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Holiday Happenings, AI, and More: Events for November 25-December 1, 2023

A panel of artists and experts will discuss this much debated question at the ASU California Center on Tues, Nov 28.

As we nurse our food comas (and hangovers – let’s be real – nana pours a stiff drink) and continue eating leftovers, why not get our event calendar’s in order while we’re at it. The last few days of the LA Auto Show should make the cut, along with an intriguing discussion about the future of AI (see above and below), a screening or two at the Academy Museum, and a staged play reading at The Ebell. There’s also the beloved annual Hollywood Christmas Parade, plus a bunch of on-going seasonal fun to be had, like ice-skating and never-ending light displays. 

Arts, Culture, and Technology

And the epic 10-day car fest carries on this week, but only until Sunday, so why not treat yourself to a post-Thanksgiving feast for your eyes and imagination at the 2023 LA Auto Show. Through Sun, Nov 26, the who’s who of the auto industry will be at the LA Convention Center unveiling the future of mobility in the car culture capital of the world – sunny Cali-forn-i-a! Founded in 1907, the LA Auto Show is one of the biggest and most influential auto shows in the world, and with more than 1,000,000 sf of event space to show it off, there’s more than enough room for a little bit of everything. Providing a platform for the convergence of technology and the automobile, you’ll be able to experience it up close with Indoor and Outdoor Test Drives and Rides, Cool Collectibles and Exclusive Merch, Vintage Car Displays, Activations, Special Exhibits, Food Trucks, and much more! Ticket prices and packages range from $10-$110. 

And switching gears, if you will, the Ebell of Los Angeles is back in the event lineup again with Clothes Make The Woman: Staged Play Reading on the evening of Mon, Nov 27. Join The Ebell for the reading “premieres” of eight ten-minute plays inspired by the institution’s wondrous historic costume collection. In collaboration with graduate student artists in the USC Master of Fine Arts Dramatic Writing program, the plays explore “how clothing may act as a marker of our identity and reflection of ages gone by.” Come discover more about the rich history of the 800+ artifacts in the The Ebell’s Costume Collection. With items from the elegant 1870s to present-day flair, the collection is “a time capsule that captures the tales of generations.” Readings begin at 7 p.m. with a dessert reception to follow. Entry is FREE; Kindly RSVP.

Next up, on Tues, Nov 28, at the ASU California Center at the Herald Examiner, a panel of artists and experts will discuss the relevant and much debated question – Is AI the End of Creativity—Or a New Beginning? As AI tools like ChatGPT promise to revolutionize the way we think and work, artists across disciplines have harnessed generative AI as mind-extenders, expanding the possibilities of their work, and unleashing new ways to see the world. But as bots get more adept at human-like thoughts – where do we draw the line? The event is FREE; RSVP required. The evening is co-presented by Zócalo Public Square, Arts for LA, ASU Narrative and Emerging Media Program, and LACMA, and will be moderated by Art Curator and Author, Anuradha Vikram. Discussion takes place in-person and online from 7-9 p.m. @ 1111 S. Broadway in DTLA.

On Wednesday, November 30, it’s back to the Ebell, for a discussion with best-selling author Ann Patchett, about her latest novel, Tom Lake, in which a mother recounts her younger years to her adult daughters, including a whirlwind romance with a guy who is now a world-famous movie star.  The conversation, hosted by award-winning actress Kathy Baker, will start at 7:30 p.m.  Tickets are $25 (or $50 with a copy of the book), with a discount available for Ebell members.

On the occasion of World AIDS Day and Day Without Art, the Academy Museum and its neighbor LACMA are co-presenting multidisciplinary artist Derek Jarman’s final feature, Blue (1993), completed just months before his death in 1994. Premiered at the Venice Biennale, Blue was made after an AIDS-related infection rendered Jarman temporarily blind; causing a condition where vivid flashes of blue light would disrupt his vision. “Blue not only recounts Jarman’s corporeal experiences with the virus, but also demands that viewers meditate viscerally on color, the void, and the somatic experience of living with AIDS.” Derek Jarman (1942–1994) was a prominent figure in avant-garde London circles from the 70s to the 90s, an AIDS activist, filmmaker, painter, writer, stage and costume designer, and gardener. Tickets range from $5-$10. Screening takes place at the Academy Museum on Friday, Dec 1 from 7:30-10 p.m.

Seasonal Entertainment (New and On-Going)

And you know it’s officially the hap-happiest time of the year when the annual Hollywood Christmas Parade rolls around. And on Sun, Nov 26, the 91st edition will be parading down Hollywood Blvd. promoting kindness and the thought of giving and helping others. Each year, the Parade features Toys For Tots, as well as other important organizations and charities that help underprivileged people during this important giving season. There will be marching bands, pageantry, floats, celebrities, live performances, Santa, and all that one can expect from a Hollywood parade! Bleacher tickets are still available and range from $35-$120. Parade route starts near the Chinese Theater on Hollywood Blvd. and Orange Dr. and heads east towards Vine, down to Sunset and back to Orange. The fun begins at 6 p.m. Please keep in mind that there will be street closures. Public transit is encouraged.

Next up is the newly opened annual LA Kings Holiday Ice at L.A. LIVE!! Bring your friends, plan your date night, or enjoy the ice rink before and after a game or concert. General Admission tickets are only available for purchase on-site at the ice rink box office during hours of operation. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for kids, seniors, and military. A limited quantity of Fast Pass tickets will be also available, but online only for $45 per person. Open now open through Dec 31. Pricing includes skate rental. Hours now – Dec 18: Daily 5 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. (4 sessions); Dec 18-31: Daily 4 p.m. – midnight (4 sessions).

And more ice skating! Get in your favorite form of seasonal exercise/making a fool of yourself at the Holiday Ice Skating Rink in DTLA’s Pershing Square. Now – Jan 7, get as close to a winter wonderland in LA as you can, cruising along the ice among skyscrapers, while you picture yourself surrounded by trees, on a lake, in a forest, somewhere far far away. Anyhoo, back to reality now, be sure to lookout for special events happening throughout the month as well. Skate rentals are included in admission ($20 per hour). Lockers and skating aids for the kiddos are $5 extra. Rink opens at 11:30 a.m. daily; closing times vary. And will be open on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve/Day, and New Years Eve/Day.

Ice skating, holiday lights, Christmas parades – It’s all happening so fast!! The L.A. Zoo Lights: Animals Aglow experience is back for another season of lighting up your world. Come explore an immersive landscape filled with dazzling new lantern sculptures of animals among blooming flowers, towering trees, and more, for a nature-focused holiday celebration! Ticket prices vary depending on day of the week, check website for deets. Zoo Lights on display now – Jan 7. 

Also lighting up our lives this season, is the third edition of Lightscape at the L.A. County Arboretum. Located a little east of LA in Arcadia, the Aboretum’s uplit trees and illuminated installations will once again dot the roughly mile-long pathway for the 2023 season, which has been “reimagined” this with an expanded trail. The light cathedral will, of course, make its return, as will the fire garden, one of events favorite highlights. Santa will also be there on select dates! Tickets range from $29-$35 and $14-$18 for kids (under 3 are free).  Lightscape will be yours to behold from now – Jan 2

And even more magical light displays for your sight to see! Now – Jan 7, you’ll have the chance to immerse yourself in a shimmering nocturnal wonderland at Descanso Gardens Enchanted Forest of Light; an interactive, nighttime experience, featuring a one-mile magical route through the garden. There will be returning favorites, including an entire town of “stained glass” creations by contemporary sculptor Tom Fruin; sparkling geometric installations from HYBYCOZO; Flower Power on the Promenade; and exquisite lighting effects in the Ancient Forest, as well as fresh delights to keep you in awe (click here for a preview). Advance tickets are required for entry and will NOT be sold on-site. Entry times start at 5:30 p.m. and end at 8:30 p.m. Gardens close at 10 p.m. Tickets are $35-$45 for adults and $25-$30 for kids ages 2-12. Please note that DG will be closed on Nov 23 and Dec. 24-25.

Local Government 

Your local NC, the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council (GWNC), is back in action on Tues, Nov 28 with an in-person Land Use Committee meeting at 6:30 p.m. LUC meetings will continue to take place at the Marlborough School at 250 S. Rossmore Ave. (Rm C115) until further notice.

And their friends across town, the Mid City West Neighborhood Council, have two meetings on the sched, for the Transportation & Sustainability Committee (via Zoom) on Tues, Nov 28. Followed by an Executive Committee Meeting on Thurs, Nov 30. Check Mid City’s website for details, agendas, and full schedule. Unless otherwise specified, all MCW meetings will still be held at the Pan Pacific Park Senior Center (lunch room) located at 141 S. Gardner St.


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Julia Christiansen
Julia Christiansen
Julia is a native Angeleno and jack of all trades, having worked in television, visual effects, professional sports, health and wellness, and custom design. She currently resides in El Segundo.

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