The 63 best things to do in L.A. this week (2024)

The 63 best things to do in L.A. this week (1)

Find concerts, screenings, performances and more of our critics’ picks with the best events and things to do in Los Angeles this week

Photograph: Courtesy Grettel Cortes

Edited by Michael Juliano

Editor, Los Angeles & Western USA

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If we could write the rules of living in Los Angeles this would be our No. 1, always at the top of our list: When you live in this city, there’s no excuse for boredom just because it’s a weeknight. There are hundreds of things to doin Los Angeles each week,whether you hit the beachat sunset or go for a morningbike ride, or catch aconcert or a comedy show—and that’s really only scratching the surface. Well, we don’t make the rules, but we will provide you with plenty of ideas for your next free weeknight right here. Nowgo out and tackle these things to do in L.A. this week.

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The best events in L.A. this week

Lotus Festival
  • Things to do
  • Festivals
  • Echo Park

Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Joits

Celebrate the (potential though likely just ceremonial) bloom of Echo Park Lake’s beloved floating flowers with the annual Lotus Festival. Expect plenty of food, music, dragon boat races, lantern launches and—if we’re lucky—the lotus flower beds in full bloom. The historic event celebrates the contributions of Asian-Americans to L.A., and this year, the 43rd, will honor theFilipino community.

Roaring Nights at the L.A. Zoo
  • Things to do
  • Walks and tours
  • Griffith Park

Photograph: Courtesy Jamie Pham, GLAZA

See the zoo in a whole new light at this special after-hours exploration series (back for two nights of ’80s cover bands and a silent disco). Those 21 and up can roam the zoo on their own or learn from pop-up zookeeper talks and live animal encounters. Unleash your own inner animal at live shows from local bands plus a dance party at the carousel. Local food truck faves will be on hand, along with a full bar for getting zoo-boozy.

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Maestro of the Movies: The Music of John Williams and More
  • Things to do
  • Performances
  • Hollywood

Photograph: Michael Juliano

Nobody’s film credits can compare to John Williams:Star Wars, E.T., Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, Harry Potter and literally a hundred others.David Newman conductsthe LA Phil as they tackle some of the composer’s iconic film scores set to a selection of movie clips. Williams was initially scheduled to appear, as he often does each year, but the LA Phil announced that he will no longer conduct “due to a recent health concern, from which he is expected to make a full recovery.”

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Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival
  • Shakespeare
  • Griffith Park

Photograph: Courtesy Grettel Cortes

Each summer, Bard fanatics watch their favorite works come to life at the historic Old Zoo in Griffith Park. Independent Shakespeare Co. puts on a series of lively productions each week, inviting audiences to take a seat on the grass (read: bring a picnic blanket) and enjoy performances like this season’s headliner:As You Like It.With construction resuming on the main lawn, this summer’s show will move back to the dell at the top of the Old Zoo—meaning available space is smaller and reservations are required.

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Missy Elliott Presents Party on the Plaza: An Out of This World Experience
  • Things to do
  • Performances
  • Downtown

Photograph: Rozette Rago

Before she takes the stage at the Crypto.com Arena, you can partake in a free birthday party for Missy Elliott at the Music Center. Held on the Jerry Moss Plaza, Missy herself will kick off the evening with an onstage welcome message, followed by a dance challenge led by her on-tour dancers. The evening is capped off with a to-be-announced skyward surprise (so, either fireworks or a drone show, most likely).

626 Night Market
  • Things to do
  • Arcadia

Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/mrsamisnow

The midnight snacker’s greatest fantasy is just a car ride away. One of America’s largest Asian food markets spans the course of Santa Anita Park’s front Paddock Gardens during the summer. Come hungry and come caffeinated—this lively market, complete with over 250 Asian street food and booze peddlers, live music, artists, games, and beyond, won’t put itself to bed until midnight.

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Ever Present
  • Music
  • Westside

Photograph: Michael Juliano for Time Out

Ride the tramto the Getty on selectdays for this experimental series of ephemeral performances and listening sessions. Formerly known as Friday Flights,the series takes its name from an engraving that marks the entrance to Robert Irwin’s central garden at the museum: “Ever present / Never twice the same / Ever changing / Never less than whole.”

InJulyyou’ll find a recreation of a 1960s performance piece from artist Joan Jonas. Dubbed Mirror Piece I & II, it entails 15 dancers in the museum’s tram arrival plaza moving mirrors in synchronization.

The Rolling Stones
  • Music
  • Rock and indie
  • Inglewood

Photograph: Michael Juliano for Time Out

The world’s grayest…er, greatest rock & roll band is back to get its rocks off inInglewood with a show at SoFi Stadium. The reason to hit the road is, well, because they still can. When we last saw them, they ripped, though it took a handful of songs for them to loosen their ligaments.

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Swirl Fest
  • Things to do
  • Sport events
  • Venice

Photograph: Stephanie Breijo

Skate around a pop-up track and rampand partake in a group paddle during this Venice event from the localinclusive, women-founded skate community GRLSWIRL. In addition to surf and surfskate competitions, you’ll findmusic and DJ setsunder the Venice sign.

Missy Elliott
  • Music
  • Rap, hip-hop and R&B
  • South Park

Photograph: Rozette Rago

Way back in 2017, Missy Elliott tore through her catalog of mega hits at FYF, and during her return to an L.A. stage for the first time in a decade, her songs sounded just as infectious as they were in the early aughts. Now, she’s back again for her (shockingly) first-ever headlining tour, which includes a stop at the Crypto.com Arena withBusta Rhymes, Ciara and Timbaland.

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Kate Berlant
  • Comedy
  • La Cienega

Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

Kate Berlant, who grew up in Los Angeles, started doing stand-up at 17 at Archer School for Girls—or at least, she told one-liners while wearing a kimono and sitting in a wheelchair. She no longer brings props on stage, but her definition of comedy is still expansive. Berlant doesn’t tell jokes so much as she riffs on the metaphysical, turning a set into a strange stream of consciousness that leads nowhere, and is simultaneously disarming and satisfying.

Stadiumlinks Golf at Dodger Stadium
  • Sports and fitness
  • Golf
  • Echo Park

Photograph: Larry Gibson / Shutterstock.com

So maybe you’ll never get called up to swing a bat at Dodger Stadium, but you can swing… a golf club? Or at least you can when Stadiumlinks turns the field into a par-39 golf course with nine tee shots and six “short game challenges.”

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Outdoor Movies at the Skirball
  • Movies
  • Westside

Photograph: Courtesy Timothy Norris/Zoolander (2001), directed by Ben Stiller, courtesy Paramount Pictures/Photofest

Take a seat in the Skirball Cultural Center’s courtyard for this series of outdoor screenings. The Sepulveda Pass museum is showingPan’s Labyrinthto tie in to its Wild Things Are Happening: The Art of Maurice Sendakexhibition.

Taylor Tomlinson
  • Comedy
  • Stand-up
  • La Cienega

Photograph: Courtesy Lincoln Andrew DeFer

TheAfter Midnight host and all-around excellent stand-up stops by Largo for a set.

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Sunday Afternoon Concerts in the Dome
  • Music
  • Classical and opera
  • Angeles National Forest

Photograph: Courtesy Irina Logra

Listen to classicaland jazz in a domemore than a mile above L.A. during this mountaintop concert series. The Mount Wilson Observatory is hostingmonthly concerts this summer inside the dome ofits 100-inch Hooker telescope, which was the largest telescope in the world for much of the first half of the 20th century.

Hot Tub with Kurt and Kristen
  • Comedy
  • Stand-up
  • Cypress Park

Photograph: Mandee Johnson

Kristen Schaal and Kurt Braunohler host their variety show, Hot Tub, every Wednesday night at Permanent Records Roadhouse (after years spent on Mondays at the Virgil). Expect a fresh, oddball lineup each week of stand-up comics, sketch performances and new music.

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KCRW Summer Nights
  • Music
  • Downtown

Photograph: Courtesy Brian Feinzimer

Everyone’s favorite NPR member station has a hand in aslew of summer concert slates atpublic plazas and beloved museums, and this summer’s schedule is particularly packed. Familiar KCRW DJs and local buzz bands will be providing free, open-air tunes on select nights through September at Union Station,CAAM,Descanso Gardens, Bowers Museum, Century Park, the AutryandKCRW’s Santa Monica headquarters.

Pageant of the Masters
  • Art
  • Painting
  • Laguna Beach

Photograph: Courtesy Pageant of the Masters

Life imitates art, literally: Classic paintings, statues and murals take on a new dimension as real people dress and pose to recreate original masterpieces—a trick popularized by vaudeville artiste Lolita Perine at the first festival in 1932. A professional orchestra, a narrator, intricate sets and theatrical lighting help bring the works to life at the Festival of Arts in Laguna Beach. This year’s theme, “À La Mode: The Art of Fashion”revisits grand looks through the years.

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Shakespeare by the Sea
  • Shakespeare

Expand your mind on breezy summer nights by listening to the words of the Bard for free. The program, founded in 1998, will put on two plays—Cardenioand Henry IVwith the help of talented local actors. “By the Sea” is a bit misleading; though some of the locations are ocean adjacent, and largely in the South Bay and Long Beach, the troupe takes the plays on tour all across Los Angeles, performing for audiences fromPasadenato Beverly Hills while promoting literacy.

Twilight Garden Strolls at the Huntington
  • Things to do
  • San Marino

Photograph: Courtesy Beth Coller/The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

As sunset creeps later and later into the evening, the Huntington is taking advantage ofthe extra daylight with this coveted after-hours series.Formerly openjust for members,Twilight Garden Strollsis now open to the public, too, and will extend the San Marino garden’s hours until 8pmonselect evenings in the summer. Just a heads up that you’ll need a timed ticket that’s separate from regular morning or afternoon admission.

Been there, done that? Think again, my friend.

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