Father's Day in LA: 20 Things Dads Actually Want To Do

Take Dad out to the ballgame. Photo courtesy of Angels Baseball
Take Dad out to the ballgame. Photo courtesy of Angels Baseball

There are lots of ways to celebrate Father's Day around LA; the trick is figuring out what the dad at your house really wants. It's his day—you want to surprise him with something special and unexpected, like flying through the treetops, driving his dream car, watching Indy, or climbing aboard Air Force One. If you want this Father's Day weekend to revolve around something more exciting than a new tie, check out our ideas for dad-friendly, kid-friendly activities that he just might not see coming. We guarantee there are some Father's Day ideas on our list you hadn't thought of (and some you hadn't even heard of!).

Happy Father's Day from all of us at Mommy Poppins!

1. Take Dad Out To the Ball Game

Why avoid the obvious? Mom loves brunch, and Dad loves a ball game. While the Boys in Blue are playing in Arizona for Father’s Day, the Angels are hosting the Detroit Tigers three times over the weekend. And the stadium returns to full capacity just in time for Father's Day, so tickets are actually available!

2. High Adventure: Go Ziplining

If the dad in your life is a bit of a thrill-seeker, he might enjoy getting everyone to scream along with him as he flies through the treetops. We know of several great places to go ziplining in SoCal.

3. Go Camping

There are wonderful campgrounds near LA. There are even some where you can book a campsite last minute. Or perhaps your kids give you a little more time to relax when you stay at one of these campgrounds that have extra entertainment for kids!

Father's Day in LA: Go Camping

Spend time together (and away from Wi-Fi) when you go camping. Photo by Jeff Dow courtesy of KOA Kampgrounds of America

4. Explore Area Hiking Trails

Outdoor-loving dads are always up for a great hike. Check out our list of favorite hikes for the whole family – or if you’ve got a small child in tow, our favorite toddler-friendly hikes and nature walks.

5. Rock Out at the Grammy Museum

The Grammy Museum is finally open again with timed, advanced tickets, so take your big bad voodoo daddy and get a unique look at music history. This spot is a treat for the Mamas and the Papas.

6. Rodeo Drive Tour d’Elegance

After being canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19, this year Concours d’Elegance is back with a special spin. To encourage social distancing, the event will transform to the Tour d'Elegance, showcasing a 50 car parade traveling from Petersen Automotive Museum through the city of Beverly Hills along Wilshire Boulevard and Beverly Drive. You may not be able to buy Dad a vintage Alfa Romeo, but it's free to look! 

Father's Day in LA: Beverly Hills Car Show

Check out the new Tours D'Elegance car parade. Photo by Ted7

7. See the Real Batmobile at Petersen Automotive Museum

Speaking of the Petersen Automotive Museum, it’s open again and is perfect for the gearhead dad. The museum’s current exhibit features movie cars like the Batmobile and the DeLorean from Back to the Future. Just don’t be surprised when he starts acting like a 12-year-old again.

8. Get Him in the Passenger’s Seat of a Porsche

Simply looking at cars isn’t quite enough of a thrill for your car-loving papa? The Porsche Experience Center Los Angeles hosts a Father’s Day brunch that adds some adrenaline to his day. Start him off with brunch that includes prime rib, snow crab legs, and more and then let him get in the passenger’s seat of a Porsche for demonstration laps at the Handling Circuit with a Porsche Drive Coach.

9. How About a Kid-Friendly Beer Garden?

If what Daddy really loves is knocking back a brewski, take him to his favorite brewery or beer garden, or find a new favorite with our list of LA's family-friendly beer gardens?

10. A Winery Weekend

This is nothing to whine about: SoCal has some great family-friendly wineries in Temecula, plus wineries kids can enjoy in Santa Ynez Valley, too. Drive in either direction for a welcome surprise!

11. Take in a Dad-Themed Drive-In Movie

If dad loves the movies, take in a drive-in movie with Rooftop Cinema Club. Choose from a variety of movies that are perfect for Father’s Day, including The Goofy Movie and Taken.

12. Tee Time!

Maybe your kids aren’t quite old enough for a full-fledged round of golf, but The Point in El Segundo is hosting a Father’s Day Mini Golf pop-up the day before Father’s Day.

13. Head To the Harbor

If you’re up for a drive to Oxnard, the Channel Islands Maritime Museum is hosting its free Father’s Day Classics By The Sea. The event has vintage boats, classic cars like the iconic Woodie, plus live music, a maritime treasures sale with used books and tools, plus models and art.

14. Explore the Santa Monica Pier

Take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the Santa Monica Pier and Pacific Park. If dad’s an angler, he can even drop a line into the water!

Father's Day in LA: Paradise Cove

Relax on a private beach. Photo courtesy of Paradise Cove Beach Cafe

15. Lounge at Malibu’s Paradise Cove

Dads love to relax, too! Rent a palapa for the day so you can soak up the sun at Paradise Cove in Malibu.

16. Relax in Town with a Resort Pass

If you don't feel like making the drive out to Malibu, you can always rent a cabana or buy day passes for a relaxing afternoon at a luxury hotel pool. Resortpass offers a variety of hotel day passes at hotels around Los Angeles. 

17. Reconnect with Nature

Take your animal-loving dad to the grand opening of Kindred Spirits Care Farm in Chatsworth, which just happens to coincide with Father's Day. Popular in Europe, Kindred Spirits is one of only two care farms in the United States. If the dad in your life is an earthy kind of guy, he’ll love the chance to connect with the natural world.

18. Go To Italy, Er, the Getty Villa

If dad is an art-lover, then take him to the Getty Villa. The recently reopened museum is home to many ancient works of art and has a gorgeous outdoor patio for dining on Mediterranean-inspired fare.

19. Seek Thrills at Magic Mountain

If art's not really dad's thing, but exhilaration is, then head to Six Flags Magic Mountain, which is now fully reopened. Six Flags is home to dozens of the most thrilling roller coasters in the country, plus has enough attractions that the entire family can find a ride that's just their speed.

20. Buy Dad a Steak

Dad works hard all year, so encourage him to splurge on Father’s Day at one of LA’s many upscale steakhouses. From STK in Westwood to The Castaway in Burbank and the appropriately-named Meat on Ocean in Santa Monica, let dad bring out his inner carnivore in style.

Free Day at the Arboretum
Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden - 9:00 AM Pick
Tuesday Night Dance
Argyros Plaza at Segerstrom Center for the Arts - 6:30 PM Pick
Meet the Grunion
Cabrillo Marine Aquarium - 9:00 PM Pick
Kids Club at the Americana
Americana at Brand - 10:00 AM
Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides