Arts & Entertainment

7 fun ways to spend your weekend in SoCal

File: A butterfly is seen at the Los Angeles Natural History Museum on April 8, 2011 during the opening day for members at the Butterfly Pavilion.
File: A butterfly is seen at the Los Angeles Natural History Museum on April 8, 2011 during the opening day for members at the Butterfly Pavilion.
Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Hang out with butterflies, get a henna tattoo or dance to Daft Punk on the Santa Monica Pier. The weekend train awaits, are you hopping aboard?


1. Butterfly Pavilion at NHM

Overall numbers of the black-and-orange butterflies have dropped from 1 billion to fewer than 60 million over the past two decades as milkweed nationwide has fallen prey to development and pesticides.
Overall numbers of the black-and-orange butterflies have dropped from 1 billion to fewer than 60 million over the past two decades as milkweed nationwide has fallen prey to development and pesticides.
Axel Foley/Flickr Creative Commons

Butterflies are getting a new permanent home at the Natural History Museum of L.A. County. Twenty California-native species of butterfly including monarchs, mourning cloaks and buckeyes, along with 10 subtropical varieties like the grey cracker and malachite, will all be in the pavilion. The new space for these gentle creatures means more flight space, resting spots and natural light. Pro tip: Timed tickets to get into the butterfly pavilion are required, so buy in advance. 

When: Opens Friday at 9 a.m. and runs through Oct. 16

Where: Natural History Museum of L.A. County | MAP

Price: General admission plus the butterfly pavilion $17 | Get Tickets


2. Savor Santa Ana 2016

https://www.instagram.com/p/BKQ8dMijEjN/?taken-by=dtsantaana

Get to know downtown Santa Ana, while tasting fare from a variety of restaurants. More than 40 restaurants are participating, including Yojie Japanese Fondue, Portola and Chapter One: TML. There's also live entertainment from Santa Ana High School's mariachis, plus a pop-up karaoke station for the late legend Juan Gabriel. Pro tip: You can stroll as you choose which spots you'd like to try, or hop on the trolley that will transport you around for free. 

When: Friday, 5 p.m.

Where: Downtown Santa Ana Farmers' Market | MAP

Price: $10 for five tastings | Get Tickets


3. L.A. Green Festival

Courtesy Green Festival Expo

All about that healthy lifestyle? This is your alternative to festivals packed with fried foods. There will be 250 exhibitors filling the giant space in DTLA for three days of lectures, demonstrations and, of course, merchandise — all revolving around a green and eco-friendly theme. Hit up any of the organic cooking demonstrations, get your weekly yoga session in or just eat and shop some seriously green products. Check out the full program here

When: Friday, noon-6 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Where: Los Angeles Convention Center | MAP 

Price: Tickets are $12-$35 | Get tickets  


4. Pokémon GO Gym Battles and Lure Fest 

File: People playing Pokemon Go.
File: People playing Pokemon Go.
Ruby Wallau/NPR

We know it's been a while since the game flooded the streets with aspiring Pokémon trainers, but while the hype may have dwindled away for some, the goal of becoming a master is still real for others. The Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks is setting up lures at various parks this month to aid in your quest to be the very best — food, music and other activities are just an added bonus. Visit the website for other event dates. 

When and where: Saturday 2 p.m.- 6p.m. at the Hansen Dam & Aquatics Center | MAP 

Sunday 9 a.m.-1 p. m. at Griffith Park (near Shane's Inspiration Walk & Roll) | MAP 

Price: Free 


5. Downey International Food and Music Festival

You can get henna tattoos this weekend at the Downey International Food and Music Festival.
You can get henna tattoos this weekend at the Downey International Food and Music Festival.
Kannan B via Flickr

Weekends can never go wrong with free street festivals jam packed with music, food and good company. Here's another chance to catch as many rays of sun as you can before summer is over for good, complete with face painters, photo booths and henna artists. 

When: Saturday 4 p.m.-11 p.m.

Where: Downtown Downey | MAP  

Price: Free


6. Chinatown Moon Festival

https://www.instagram.com/p/BKW51XQjdTS/?taken-by=lachinatown

Roam under the countless red lanterns scattered across Chinatown and indulge in craft beer gardens, mooncake tastings and bites from food trucks. Squeeze this and as many DIY workshops in before the 7 p.m. Saturn and Moon Harvest viewing. Telescopes will be provided by the Griffith Observatory so you can get the best view, to be followed by more food and live music. Apart from the food trucks and vendors, yes, it's really all free. 

When: Saturday 5 p.m.-11 p.m.

Where: Central Plaza | MAP 

Price: Free


7. HUSHFest: Santa Monica Pier

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gghh5byBETs

A silent concert might sound like an oxymoron, but for HUSHconcerts, it's the norm. At this end of summer show, DJs will be spinning Radiohead and Daft Punk — not blasted through giant speakers, but through headphones that everyone in attendance will be wearing. To people sans headphones, the sight of people dancing to seeming silence might be a bit ridiculous – but then again, they aren't the ones listening to "One More Time." 

When: Saturday 7 p.m.

Where: Santa Monica Pier | MAP

Price: General admission is $10 | Get Tickets


What'd we miss? Let us know on Twitter @kellie_gal, @lizmoonyoz and @LeoHasACat.