Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

The Week Ahead – Events for August 6-13, 2021

Big Sunday is looking for local volunteers to help fill 3,000 backpacks for underserved kids this week.


I tried finding something spooky to do for Friday the 13th in August, but to no avail. What I did find was a plethora of ways to support emerging artists, from showroom openings to competition winners to an art fair with a free pancakes incentive (hey, you can’t go wrong with that). Or you can put on your charity hat and help Big Sunday fill backpacks for disadvantaged youth. Whatever you choose to do, I approve.


Arts & Culture


Come support local artist and Art Center graduate Nathanael “Tito” Gonzalez, as he celebrates the grand opening of TITO Art and Design, his DTLA showroom and workshop, Saturday, August 7 from 4-10 p.m. There will be art, furniture, music, giveaways, discounts, and possible UFO sightings. “All life forms are welcome.” This is a free event, but an RSVP is appreciated and it’ll get you free drinks. Located in the Arts District at 1855 Industrial Street, Suite 107.

And to keep up the flow of support for emerging artists, head over to TAG Gallery this weekend and gaze upon the contemporary creations of this year’s chosen artists from the California Open art competition. All awards will be announced at the opening reception this Saturday, August 7 from 7-10 p.m., with works on display from August 4-21. Complimentary wine will be served; masks may be required. Gallery hours are 1-7 p.m., Wed-Sun.

Moving on to live music…the 35th season of Grand Performances returned to (the newly made over) California Plaza back in June, but there are still plenty of shows to be seen. Like this Saturday’s Dilla Fest, commemorating 15 years of J Dilla’s 2006 album Donuts, with special guest DJs and live performances, featuring Talib Kweli, on Saturday, August 7 from 7-10 p.m. California Plaza is located at 300 S. Grand Ave (between Olive and Grand, off 4th street) – RSVP here. And on Friday, August 13 from 7-9 p.m., enjoy contemporary soul music from Jacque Hammond and Qur’an Shaheed – RSVP here. Grand Performances are fun for all ages and always free.

Next we’re back with more emerging artists at the 10th annual Pancakes and Booze Art Fair, next Friday and Saturday, August 13-14, starting at 8 p.m.  Come one, come all people age 21 and over down to Lot 613 to “one of the largest pop-up art movements to hit North America over the past decade.” This is a super chill art show with booze, body painting, and free pancakes for all!

And finally in the arts realm, Cinespia movie nights at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery are sold out until their last screening of the season, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. It’s a few weeks in the future yet, on Saturday, August 28, but tickets are still available, so we’re letting you know well ahead of time – get ’em while they last! Gates at 6:45 p.m., movie at 8:30 p.m.

Food & Fun


After being brought back (again) by popular demand, Summer Sounds on the Plaza at the Original Farmers Market will come to a close next Thursday and Friday, August 12-13, from 6-8 p.m. Enjoy Doo Wop and R&B with Lil Mo & The Dynaflos on Thursday, and Samba with Katia Moraes and Brazilian Hearts on Friday.

Then head over to Bistro 1759 to impress your family, friends, or date with a unique private dining experience. Bistro 1759 opened at The Grove in May of this year and runs through August 31, so if you haven’t yet dined atop a double-decker trolley, while it cruises around The Grove, you ain’t livin’! A lavish 4-course meal with cocktails and wine pairings from Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill will be served. The cost starts at $1000 and is available for up to 10 guests.

Perhaps the biggest culinary event this week, however, is Black Restaurant Week, which kicks off today (Friday, August 6) and runs through August 15.  There are more than 60 LA-area restaurants participating this year, including several very local favorites ( Pips on La Brea and Sky’s Gourmet Tacos)…and many others within an easy drive (e.g. Post & Beam, Mel’s Fish Shack, Harold & Belle’s, Honey’s Kettle Fried Chicken, and more).  And yes, there are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options, too!


History & Community


Back to school season is upon us and, luckily, so is the 12th annual Back to School charity event hosted by Big Sunday. This coming week, August 9-13, Big Sunday and local volunteers will fill 3,000 backpacks with supplies for disadvantaged kids all around Los Angeles. The packing party is usually just one night, but this year, social distancing will stretch it out for a whole week. There will be a limit of 50 volunteers per session and, per tradition, a community meal will follow. Packing sessions will be from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 6-8 p.m., with school reps on site to talk about their schools and why the help is so needed and appreciated. You can also sponsor backpacks for $25 each, buy supplies and drop them off, donate through the Target Wishlist, or if you’re feeling extra generous and would like to become an event sponsor, you can do that, too. Sponsors can be corporations, faith groups, foundations, schools, clubs, families and individuals. Drop off dates are Monday and Tuesday, August 9-10 from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. at Big Sunday headquarters, 6111 Melrose Ave.

Switching gears now to architectural history, come explore The Legacy of Millard Sheets with an LA Conservancy virtual tour on Wednesday, August 11 from 6-7 p.m. Sheets was a highly influential artist, architect, educator, and Southern California native, who had a passion for integrated arts. He was also mindful that the beautiful mosaic murals on his buildings connected to the history of the community in some way. The cost is $8 for Conservancy members and $12 for non-members.


Kids & Family


Makers Mess Mini Makers Summer Art Camps at ROW DTLA are back this week, August 9-13, with Spots, Stripes & Roar-some Art. Campers will get to channel their inner spirit animal and create some animal-inspired art. Each week has a different theme, with the option do the whole week at $475 or camp a la carte at $95 a day. Hours are M-F from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., with early drop off at 9:30 a.m. for an additional $25 and late pick up for $65 until 4 p.m. Mini Makers is for kids ages 4-12, with a limit of 14 kids per day; masks required. Be sure to pack your kiddos a lunch and water, too. Located at 777 S. Alameda St., Space 124, Los Angeles.


Local Government


If you weren’t already in the know, Livable California’s weekly teleconference will be cancelled this Saturday, August 7, so you can tune in to a 10 a.m.  Statewide Town Hall on SB 9 and SB 10 instead. These bills will affect thousands of single-family neighborhoods all around California, allowing new construction of multi-unit buildings without any input from the affected communities.  Registration is required.

Moving on to more local politics, the Mid City West Neighborhood Council will hold its monthly board meeting on Tuesday, August 10, starting at 6:30 p.m.

Greater Wilshire Neighborhood CouncilAnd the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council will hold two meetings this week: the Outreach Committee meeting  will be held on Saturday, August 7 from 9:30-11:00 a.m. (Click here for details and supporting documents.) And the General Board Meeting will be held on Wednesday, August 11 from 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. Click here for details and supporting documents.


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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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