Summer has officially begun. Well. Almost. You know what I mean. And before we ride off into the metaphorical sunset that might include getting on a plane and leaving this beautiful place we call home, I wanted to list out some of the top things happening in our own backyard that you won’t want to miss.
Summer in LA is a beautiful thing. It gives us hope. A reason to stick around. Summer Fridays. Outdoor movies. Rooftops. Suntans. Beach bods-ish. Festivals galore. Happiness at its core. And as long as we avoid the uber touristy parts of the city, this summer has the potential to feel like the whimsical vacation you’ve been dreaming of. Trust me.
OH THE POSSIBILITIES.
1. Get your butt to the top of some rooftop eatery or bar somewhere in the city and remind yourself why you love living in LA. This is EASILY my favorite summer time activity, and some of my personal favorite rooftop hangs include: Mama Shelter, The Nomad Hotel Rooftop, Terra (rooftop restaurant at Eataly), Broken Shaker, Perch, Catch LA, and Boxwood at the London.
2. Beat the 4th of July madness and go to Cinespia’s Thelma & Louise + Fireworks showing on Tuesday, July 3rd. The outdoor movie series takes place at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery and allows you to watch movies while drinking wine, eating cheese boards, and enjoying all the things that are good in life. If you haven’t seen a screening or a show at the Hollywood Forever yet, you’re seriously missing out and the time is now!
THE ORIGINAL FARMERS MARKET.
3. The Original Farmer’s Market on Fairfax is hosting Friday Night Music concerts starting THIS FRIDAY. Take a load off at the end of the work week and stop by the West Patio from 7 to 9pm to hear live music during or after your shopping trip or dinner al fresco. Did I mention these are also free?
TAKE A TRIP TO PARIS.
4. Who doesn’t love the idea of jet setting away for the summer and drinking and dining in Paris? But who maybe also just can’t really do that? (insert hand raise emoji.) Then the next best thing for us Angelenos itching for a Parisian inspired escape might just be Barbette: a new bar and bistro that has come to West Hollywood – owned by the same people who run Jones LA and The Roger Room. Expect a Parisian brasserie-style bar and dining room, while those seeking an intimate corner can escape to the *j’adorable* enclosed garden patio in the back.
FREE OUTDOOR YOGA.
5. Because exercising is fun too, why not do a free or donation based yoga class this summer. These are usually outdoors and there are more than enough happening to find a class in your local neighborhood. I personally enjoy the Runyon Canyon Yoga that takes place at the grassy end of the park near the Fuller entrance. There are normally at least two classes a day, and it’s perfect for a pre-hike stretch or post-hike cool down. But other than that there are TONS of places to get your outdoor yoga on – read up on this super helpful article from my friends at LA Mag for more.
SUMMER HAPPENINGS AT THE BROAD.
6. Get your culture on – head to The Broad. I realize this is more of an indoor activity, BUT, they have an amazing summer series that happens once a month and involves late-night music performances and art at the museum. I’m specifically looking forward to the Social Shaman Saturday on July 28 featuring Faust!
WINE TASTINGS AT BARNSDALL.
7. The one Summer activity I look forward to EVERY year in LA is Barnsdall Art Park’s wine tasting nights. Everyone and their children and mothers and cousins all come together, picnics in tow, to partake in some wine tasting on the lawn at Barnsdall. There is a DJ, there is plenty of people watching, and most importantly there is wine – curated from Silverlake Wines!
MUSEUMS AND GARDENS.
8. If you’re looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, head out to Pasadena and visit the sculpture garden at the Norton Simon Museum. The water lily dotted pond was inspired by Monet and it is absolutely transcendent to be there. Might as well make it a double and visit the Huntington Library & Gardens while you’re at it!
9. A fun free thing? Grab a group of friends and visit one of LA’s 25 parks to have a fun picnic. My favorite is Echo Park Lake because it also offers paddle boating in its beautiful lake – and lots and lots of people watching. (We love people watching.) Oh and some times ice cream trucks!! And swan pedal boats! And general overwhelming cuteness!
MONDAYS AT THE SATELLITE.
10. Every Monday night through December, check out residency acts at The Satellite, or the Echo. It’s a great way to see local music talent that’s up and coming, while also, not having to pay to see them. Fitz and the Tantrums, Local Natives and Superhumanoids have graced the local residency stage, so get to it!
11. Go to the beach! OBVIOUSLY! Or, pretend you did and visit all the cool beachside spots like Malibu Farm, The Getty Villa, the Manhattan Beach boardwalk, bike through Dockweiler, or hang around Playa Provisions. I’d love to know what your favorite beachside hangs are though!
*bonus activity – head to Arroyo Seco music festival this weekend! It easily became my favorite festival last year, it’s local (in Pasadena), and it’s produced by the same team who produces Coachella. Oh and the lineup is 💯. I’ll be there too!