Orange County

Best Things to Do This Weekend with LA Kids: Dinosaurs, Color Queen, and Happy Birthday Marion, Jan 10 - 11

Whoo hoo, we live for nothing if not celebrating; and lucky us, yet another holiday weekend is upon us! We've had mistletoe and candy corn and champagne glasses and things made with pumpkin, but the best is yet to come because this weekend is...  it is... I know it's January and, um, for sure there's a Saturday and a Sunday, and...oh, man. I don't know how to break this to you, but I think it's just a normal weekend. No holiday. No fancy shindigs. No gifts to buy or traditional treats to bake - just you and the kids doing your everyday thing.

And that's good. We live in Southern California, so unlike the rest of the country, we can actually go outside without freezing our chimichangas off. You can explore the coastline, do a little bird watching, take a trek Into the Woods...  You can even freeze your chimmichangas off, if you’re into that sort of thing. There are also dinosaurs, Hot Wheels, and monster trucks and queens, a royal tea and a master juggler, really, something for just about everyone.

So settle back, get back in the swing of “winter” in the Southland, and enjoy life as we know it, until the next time another one of those pesky holiday things comes along to shake things up. But that won’t be until next weekend.

Keep reading for some of our most normal picks for this weekend...

Best Weekend Activities with LA Kids: Disney on Ice, Boat Parades, and Fireworks Dec 13 - 14

You can do no wrong this weekend.  There’s fun and frivolity at every turn, much of it free, and all of it fabulous. A lot of the festivities center around some guy named Kringle, but boats are big this weekend too, as are Nutcrackers and “winter” (as in snow).  And we may have dodged a Thanksgivvikah bullet this year, but that means it’s full-on dreidel time this week. (Let me hear you say men-orah).

But here’s where I’ve got to warn you: there’s just too much. We can’t fit it all in this post; even our calendar is bursting at the seams.  What we’ve got here is a highlights reel, but I guarantee you if you read the whole events calendar, you’ll find something you think we’re crazy for not including here. (And you’d be right!)

You may not be able to do it all, but we're confident that you will nonetheless find something awesome, something inspiring, something spectacular to fill your days. And remember, as always, the best is yet to come!

Keep reading for our some of our favorite picks for the weekend. 

Fun & Free Things to Do This Weekend with LA Kids: CicLAvia, Sand Snowmen, and Scuba Santa Dec 6- 7

Oh, it's here all right. De one and only December, with nonstop boat-parading, breakfasting, nutcracking, bright-lighting goodness. There's only one story this month, and whether it's told with a ho ho ho, a bah humbug, or a "pass the latkes," it's all about raking in the gift-wrapped goodies. (And helping our fellow man. That's in there, too.)

Mother Nature has been doing her part to set the seasonal tone. If you call soggy "seasonal." (I don't.) Luckily, Los Angeles offers plenty of ways to feel the true chill of Winter (snow and everything!).

Not everything is Santa this weekend: there's a Special Needs Resources Fair that comes with a free day at the Zimmer, the Grand Re-Opening of Kidseum, CicLAvia in South LA, a Sand Snowman contest, Santa in a firetruck, Santa in scuba gear, Santa swimming with the sharks... Ah, who am I kidding?  It's Santa Santa Santa.  And one Duck.

Keep reading for our most seasonal picks for the weekend. 

Fun & Free Things to Do This Weekend with LA Kids: Chill, Yo Gabba, and Mariachi Nov 22 - 23

It's beginning to feel a lot like winter, what with the Arctic chill, the record snow fall; I think there's another Polar Vortex on the way and.... oh, not here of course. Here we have our standard 72 and sunny. Kind of hard to get in the holiday spirit when you look outside and all you see is... snowSnow in Los Angeles - that can't be right...  I mean, check out the thermometer, it's a balmy...

...9 degrees Fahrenheit?!?! What kind of insane Bizarro World, SoCal ice wonderland are we talking about? (I bet that Elsa chick had something to do with it!) What am I going to do? I'll have to put on a sweater, or one of those coat things I've heard people talk about...

No. No, it's just not right. I'm going to go to my happy place, chill hang out at the beach and watch the waves come in, and sunshine and butterflies...  And Santa Claus surfing to shore. If anyone needs me I'll be hibernating 'til spring.

Keep reading for our most chilling picks for the weekend. 

Fun & Free Things to Do This Weekend with LA Kids: Discovery Cube LA, S.T.E.A.M, and Doo Dah,Nov 15 - 16

Science science science! We are going to fill you with the smarts this weekend, as LA becomes the most sciency town this side of that comet that ESA just landed on. (And that's 300 million miles away, so not so good for weekend plans.) We have a S.T.E.A.M. Festival on Santa Monica Pier to thrill and inspire your kids. The science-heads at UCLA share their enthusiasm for our universe and all things in it at the annual Exploring Your Universe event. (Do you think anyone told them about the comet?)

But perhaps the biggest science news we've got is the opening of the new Discovery Cube LA. That's right, Orange County, you don't own discovering any more. (Don't worry, we still love you, never change.) We got a sneak peek at the new Discovery Cube over the weekend, and let me tell you, it is kid heaven. Just the right mix of techno-gadgety interfaces, attractions that keep kids actively engaged, and the sheer exhilaration of natural and engineered wonders. This is no gimmick: true science is taking center stage here.

Some science is best left to the parents, though. Specifically, coffee, and the mystical timey-wimey alchemy that turns caffeine into pure happiness. Starbucks Holiday BOGO is back. Keep your paws of my chestnut praline latte and no one gets hurt.

Keep reading for our favorite picks for the weekend. 

Fun & Free Things to Do Veterans Day Weekend with LA Kids: Nov 8 - 9

Well done, parents. We made it through the season's first challenge (and hopefully got rewarded with our share of the Snickersy, Kit Katty goodness). Now is a good time to take a moment to reflect, and what better time than Veterans' Day, as we honor those who have served our country. Unlike most holidays, this one isn't all about the kids, but Veterans' Day is a school holiday, and we've got the scoop to help you commemorate the holiday with your kids.

Soon enough, we'll be feeling winter's first chill and stuffing stockings with figgy pudding (that's a tradition somewhere, isn't it?), but luckily none of that's started yet. I mean, it's barely November.  It's not like you can already go ice skating at outdoor rinks across LA (gasp!). No one's putting up any Christmas trees (zoinks!) or inviting you to come see Santa (ho ho ...seriously?).

But. But. We haven't even done Thanksgiving yet! (At least this year T-Day doesn't coincide with Hanukkah .. but Christmas Eve does!)

Keep reading for our favorite picks for the weekend. (99.9% yuletide free!)

Walking with Dinosaurs: A Roaring Good Time

I can still remember the thrill when I first saw Jurassic Park, the whole new world that first time that Steven Spielberg brought dinosaurs out of the past and moved them around on a screen for us in a way that did not look remotely animated. It was breathtaking and would have been an amazing thing to show a child - if not for all of the violent death and destruction brought on by Spielberg's intensely PG-13 plot. If only there were a way to bring dinos to life with that same impact, but in a way that little ones could better handle - perhaps even learn from. And with that, we bring you Walking with Dinosaurs.

Mini Golf in LA: Where to Play Miniature Golf or Have a Golf Birthday Party

Whether you're looking for an interesting place to have a birthday party or just something to do to keep idle hands from emptying the toy chest onto the living room floor, mini golf can be a real crowd pleaser for kids of all ages. Like the big version of the sport, the miniature version can be a great way to spend time outdoors (without inspiring the critical looks one would collect letting little ones run free on an 18-hole course), and there's little chance of getting bored with all the other entertainment these places pack in. From purists to adrenaline junkies, mini golf courses can keep the whole family entertained.

Living History Events for LA and OC Kids

Kids sometimes find history boring. And, really, who doesn't find memorizing lists of dates and names to be a bit dull? Kids love learning by doing, so the way to learn history is to go back in time! At a living history event, actors are in period costume, crafts relate to the time period, music and dancing are time-specific, and kids and their adults can hear the noises and smell the smells of the era. Actors dressed as historic figures talk about themselves in character, and traditional food is often available.

Family-friendly living history events occur all over greater Los Angeles (not just at that annual Renaissance Faire), and many events offer special activities for young ones. Some are completely free; others have free admission but charge for parking or pay-as-you-go activities. All of them offer an opportunity for a time-traveling weekend.


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