Arts & Entertainment

Free weekend? Free outdoor music, Thai Fest and Beer Week

Chef Kris Yenbamroong's summer dish - koi tuna or Thai ceviche.
Chef Kris Yenbamroong's summer dish - koi tuna or Thai ceviche.
Jacob Margolis

Beer week kicks off Saturday, and we can't think of a better way to celebrate the start of summer. But that's not all. Free outdoor music, a Thai Fest (at the beach!) and a pool party round out the weekend. Oh, and don't forget: Sunday is Father's Day. Here's everything you need to know. 


1. Live jazz at LACMA 

Watch him in action

Make it a classy date night and head over to LACMA Friday for an evening of live jazz. This week's free music is brought to you by Otmaro Ruiz, a native Venezuelan and a super talented keyboardist. For five years, he served as musical director for jazz singer Dianne Reeves; he's also worked with artists such as John McLaughlin, Tito Puente and Arturo Sandoval. 

When: 6 p.m. Friday 

Where: LACMA, BP Grand Entrance | MAP

Price: Free 


2. Grand Performances

The outdoor music series Grand Performances is back with two great shows this weekend. If you missed him at Coachella, now is your time: Gaslamp Killer will perform a DJ set with a 10-piece band Friday night. Then on Saturday, it's WATTSTAX Revisited, where the 1972 Wattstax music festival is recreated for a night of funk, soul and dancing. Before the show, join KPCC's Joanne Griffith for a chat with Tim Watson of the Watts Labor Community Action Committee and Lucien Fiiyer-Smith from the camera crew who worked on the influential 1973 documentary, "Wattstax." Hear our interview with Gaslamp Killer on Take Two here.

When: 8 p.m. Friday; 8 p.m. Saturday 

Where: California Plaza | MAP

Price: Free 


3. Thai Fest in Santa Monica  

Video: Get excited for this food

Thai food at the beach? It's hard to say "no" to that. You can expect noodles, curry, egg rolls and papaya salad at the pier this weekend for Santa Monica's Thai Fest. There will also be cooking shows, a live band and Thai dance. More at the festival's Facebook page. 

When: Noon to 9 p.m. 

Where: Santa Monica Pier | MAP

Price: Free


4. Party at The Roosevelt 

This band will be thereIt's going to be a hot one. That's why we're really excited about this free pool party at the Tropicana, The Roosevelt's poolside lounge. Music acts will include Mr. Little Jeans and Black Gatsby, among others. Bring a swimsuit and a sweater — it's likely to cool down at night. 

When: 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday

Where: The Roosevelt | MAP

Price: Free | RSVP here


5. 300 Years of Nature in LA

(Photo: Roberta Romero/Flickr/Creative Commons)

A group of L.A. professors will converge at The Autry for a panel on the history of the Griffith Observatory. Following the discussion, stick around for a walking tour of Griffith Park’s Old Zoo to explore native trees and urban wildlife. Pro tip: Tickets include museum admission.

When: Panel starts at 2 p.m.; walking tour begins at 4:30 p.m.

Where: The Autry | MAP

Price: $10 general admission, $6 for students and seniors | Purchase tix here


6. Chili at the Beach 

Yum!It's not just Pad Thai coming to a beach near you. This weekend is Huntington Beach's Eighth Annual Chili at the Beach. The weirdly delicious event will have a chili cook-off and salsa tasting competition. Plus, there'll be vendors, live music and activities for the kids. 

When: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday 

Where: Downtown Huntington Beach | MAP

Price: $10 in advance; $15 at the door | Purchase tickets here


7. Chalk Festival 

Chalk murals on Facebook

Don't forget: Sunday is Father's Day. If you're looking for a last-minute family-friendly event, this is it. Every year, Pasadena's Chalk Festival brings togethers dozens of artists to create a collection of impressive chalk murals. See animation art at "Animation Alley" and let the kids get their hands dirty at "Kids Chalkland." More on that here. Pro tip: Stop by Cold Stone Creamery to cool off. 

When: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

Where: Paseo Colorado | MAP

Price: Free


8. Beer Week Hangover Brunch 

Instagram: Beer Week!In case you forgot, Beer Week starts Saturday. The kick-off party at Exposition Park will cost you $45, but there are tons of other cheap events happening around the city all week long. The best part: Brunch on Sunday. Far Bar in Little Tokyo is hosting the event, with a special brunch menu, craft beer Micheladas and Bloody Marys. Pro tip: The beer menu is also promising. 

When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday 

Where: Far Bar | MAP

Price: Free entry; food and drink prices vary


9. Skateboard with Dad at Venice Beach 

skate shoes

This year, Go Skateboarding Day and Father's Day both land on June 21. What better way to celebrate than by riding ramps with dad? Head over to Venice Skatepark where vendors, family activities and skate competitions will take over the shore. The beach view is just the cherry on top. 

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Where: Venice Skatepark | MAP

Price: Free 

What'd we miss? Let me know on Twitter @kristenlepore.