Monday, December 1, 2014

A Long Beach Holiday 2014!

Time to plan your holiday calendar!

Until December 23:  Marionette show - free - 7pm - 3314 Country Club Drive, Lakewood

December 4: Artist in Residence - Stefan Meyer 11am-8pm - Free

Experience Stefan Meyer's fully immersive room size installation that explores the natural world in a whole new light. Come learn about the possibilities of digital fabrication in the Ralston Family Learning Center, LB Museum of Art

December 6: Winter Wonderland - Snow play! - Los Alamitos - Free

This winter season the Los Alamitos Recreation and Community Services Department and the Los Alamitos Area Chamber of Commerce invite you to attend Winter Wonderland at the Plaza. Held on Saturday, December 6th from 4:00 to 7:30pm at St. Isidore Historical Plaza, Winter Wonderland at the Plaza will feature an area to play in the snow, activities, Santa’s Village, a tree lighting ceremony, refreshments, and entertainment. The event is FREE, so be sure to bundle up and bring your family and friends along to join in the fun!

December 6-7: Victorian Christmas at the Banning Museum - Wilmington - Free

Join us on Saturday, December 6 and Sunday, December 7  from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. as we kick off the  holiday season in grand style at the Banning Museum’s Annual Victorian Christmas Celebration and Open House!  Due to the generosity of our sponsors, event admission is FREE! Visitors will enjoy period entertainment, tours of the Museum decorated in holiday splendor, refreshments, a children’s craft, a horse-drawn trolley ride between The Banning Museum and Drum Barracks Civil War Museum as well as local food and craft vendors. As a special treat, a Queen Victoria re-enactor will receive guests for the two days and Jolly St. Nick himself will pose for photos with the kids. This year’s event is even more special as we will unveil for the first time a full-size replica of the first Stagecoach Phineas Banning ever built. Imagine posing in front of an actual Banning Coach for your holiday greeting cards! Don’t miss out on the event of the season. No reservations needed.

December 11: Artist in Residence - Stefan Meyer 11am-8pm - Free - LBMA

Experience Stefan Meyer's fully immersive room size installation that explores the natural world in a whole new light. Come learn about the possibilities of digital fabrication in the Ralston Family Learning Center, LB Museum of Art
December 11: Holiday Sing - Cypress - 6pm - Civic Center - Free

Festival style seating, blankets and lawn chairs encouraged. $3 meal provided by YAC (cash only). Visits with Santa, Cookie decorating, Train rides.  In case of rain, event will be held at Cypress Community Center.

December 12-14: Prince of Peace Pageant - Wardlow Blvd between Bellflower & Spring - Free - 7:30pm

Enjoy the true story of Christmas with a candlelit outdoor walk.  Come follow the path through many scenes, complete with actors and animals.  Enjoy the choirs, musical groups, and refreshments provided by the churches. This 5-church pageant route begins at St. Cornelius Catholic Church, continues to the Neighborhood church, back along Wardlow and St. Luke's and our church, and ends at University Baptist.  Each church has additional music performances in their sanctuary.


December 13: Naples Island Holiday Boat Parade 6pm 

There will be three "groups of carolers" walking around the Island and singing holiday songs by the bridges.  Most of the homes in Naples have been decorated for the holidays in accompaniment of the Boat Parade theme. (we have a local competition for best decorated house).  Alamitos Bay Marina off 2 Street and Marina Drive offers substantial free parking just over the Davies Bridge from Naples. Mothers Beach off Revenna and Appian Way has some metered parking as well as Beach parking at Bayshore and Ocean Boulevard.

December 13: Holiday Living History - Dominguez Adobe - Carson - 3pm - Suggested donation $4/person

This holiday season the Adobe is adorned with lights and holiday decorations. This beautiful event offers fun holiday activities. The event includes tours led by the Dominguez sisters and their friends (no better way to spend the day than learning about the rich history of the area), holiday craft making (perfect gifts to give to loved ones), and music and dancing! Treat yourself to the appetizers and desserts from Mexico and Spain then of course, visit SANTA! Ask him for whatever your heart desires! But don’t forget the holidays are the perfect opportunity to give to those less fortunate, that’s why there will be a toy drive to help our local community. We hope to see everyone there to celebrate this wonderful time of year!

December 16: Free day at South Coast Botanical Garden - Rancho Palos Verdes

The South Coast Botanic Garden, "The Jewel of the Peninsula", is located on the beautiful Palos Verdes Peninsula, located 10 miles south of the Los Angeles Airport in California. Conveniently located to many South Bay communities, this 87-acre Botanic Garden has more than 2,500 different species of plants from as far away as Australia, the Mediterranean, and southern Africa. Popular features include a small lake, Mediterranean Garden, AARS Rose Garden, Water-Wise Garden, Garden for the Senses, Cactus Garden, Children's Garden, Fuchsia Garden, Dahlia Garden, Herb Garden, and Japanese Garden. There is a picnic area located outside of the Garden gates. Free abundant parking available.

December 18-19: Holiday Open House at Rancho Los Alamitos - Free 4-7pm

Enjoy the Yuletide sparkle of the ranch house, the magnificently trimmed tree, mantles and hearths festooned with greens, holiday treats and strolling carolers.
The Ranch house will be decorated and ready for regular tours by Saturday, November 29 and decorations will remain up through Sunday, December 21.

December 21: Family Artmaking Workshop - LB Museum of Art - Free 11am-3pm

Artist in Residence Stefan Meyer will lead this many faceted workshop. Participants will be able to create their own rings using the 3D printer. There will be demonstrations on how to use a 3D scanner, and a table of materials you can use to create your own jewelry from found objects.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Ticket Giveaway for LA Opera's Family Program!

Domingo Family Program welcomes all ages to an exotic adventure with "Florencia en el Amazonas"

Scenes from Florencia en el Amazonas

All aboard for an operatic adventure, as LA Opera's Domingo Family Program welcomes families to explore an exciting river journey along the Amazon River!

On Sunday, November 30, the matinee performance of Daniel Catán's Florencia en el Amazonas will feature themed activities for the whole family to enjoy while learning more about the opera and its fascinating Amazonian setting. The dynamic staging of the opera features a flying river spirit, intoxicating choreography, colorful projected animation and a 42-foot long steamship that rotates on the stage. Domingo Family Program activities are free with ticket purchases, with half-price tickets available for children from 9 to 17 when purchased with an adult ticket.   

"I love to see parents and grandparents with their children at the opera," said Plácido Domingo, the General Director of LA Opera. "It’s so important to introduce them early to the joy of the classical arts. From my own experience, I know that when families come to the opera together, it creates a special bond, with beautiful memories that last a lifetime."
Scenes from Florencia en el Amazonas

Scenes from Florencia en el Amazonas
 
Pre-show activities begin at 12:30pm in the Fifth Floor Salons of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (located at 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012). Teaching artist Peter Kors will lead enjoyable and inspiring acting workshops that explore themes from the opera and help youngsters understand the elements of theater. Exhibit interpreters from the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles will showcase specimens of flora and fauna relating to the opera's setting on the Amazon River. The performance itself will begin at 2pm and will last until approximately 4:10pm.

After the performance, participants will have the opportunity to meet the cast at a special Domingo Family Program reception in the Fifth Floor Salons.

Booster seats are available to help small children get a better view of the performance. Booster seats can be picked up from the coat check stand located on the Grand Avenue side of the main lobby. You can also reserve booster seats in advance to have them waiting in your seating locations when you arrive. To reserve booster seats, simply email Garrett Collins with your seating location at GCollins@LAOpera.org.

Tickets for the November 30 Domingo Family Program performance of Florencia en el Amazonas start at $17 for adults, and are now available for sale in person at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion box office or by phone at 213.972.8001. (No online orders.) Tickets can also be purchased for LA Opera's next Domingo Family Program performance: Rossini's rollicking comedy The Barber of Seville on March 8, 2015.
 
Scenes from Florencia en el Amazonas

To enter the giveaway for 2 adult tickets and two child tickets for the November 30th show, please send an email to hijola AT yahoo DOT com with your name & cell phone.  Winner will be chosen Tuesday, November 25 at midnight.  Good luck!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Logan's Candies - Ontario

I have heard folks raving about this candy cane making demo for ages, so I was determined to go this year.  We went with a homeschool field trip, but families can join a demo in November & December.  The calendar is at http://www.loganscandies.com/candydemos.php .


If you want to make an evening of it (and try to avoid the traffic) consider going to Vince's Spaghetti for dinner.  It is reasonably priced and can seat large parties with no problem. (Photo by Kohl Tabori)



The demo begins outside the store with the candy maker pouring the hot liquid candy onto marble.


Both colors of the candy cane start out the same, then color is added to the red part.


To make the white part, the candy is pulled over and over again.  It's amazing how it turns white when air is mixed in. (Photo by Kohl Tabori)


After the colors are arranged on the candy, the puller cuts off a small length to be bent into shape.

Freshly made candy canes!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Holiday Events 2013!

Local holiday events that you don't want to miss!
Cut a virtual snowflake!

Until December 6: Holiday Mail for Heroes - send a card to a soldier
Until December 23:  Marionette show - free - 7pm - 3314 Country Club Drive, Lakewood
Until December 24: Have Santa send a personal greeting to your child! - free
Until December 24: Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish for every stamped letter to Santa that is dropped off at special letterboxes in their stores
Until December 25:  ABC Family's 25 Days of Christmas movies
Until January 4: Festival of Lights, Mission Inn, Riverside - ice skating
Until January 5: CHILL at the Queen Mary - $40/adults, $20/kids
Until February 15: Monarch butterflies in Goleta, CA 

December 5: Sound of Music Live - NBC
December 6: Tree Lighting at Nino's - First Fridays Bixby Knolls - 6pm
December 6: Shark Lagoon Nights - Aquarium of the Pacific - free
December 6: Free admission to the Grammy Museum
December 7: Winter Wonderland - St. Isadore, Los Alamitos - free - 4pm to 8pm
December 7: Belmont Shore Christmas Parade - Long Beach
December 7: Snow Day at Drake Park - please donate a canned food to Food Finders - 1pm-5pm
December 7: Yule Ball & Toy Drive - St. Luke's, LB - admission $10 toy/family
December 7: Rancho Los Cerritos - Creation Station: Christmas crafts 1pm-4pm  - free
December 7-8: Victorian Christmas - Banning Museum - Wilmington - free
December 8: Winterfest & Christmas Musicals - First Baptist Church, 5336 E. Arbor, LB - free
December 12: Family Art Workshops - LB Museum of Art - free
December 12: Holiday Sing - Cypress - 6pm - free, $3 dinner
December 13: Snow Night! Good Neighbor Park, 2800 Studebaker, LB 5pm-9pm - free
December 13: Shark Lagoon Nights - Aquarium of the Pacific - free
December 13-15: Prince of Peace Christmas pagaent - Long Beach - 7:30pm-9pm free
December 14: Snow Day! Good Neighbor Park, 2800 Studebaker, LB 10am-8pm - free
December 14: Daisy Lane Holiday Parade - 5pm - free
December 14-15: Goodyear Blimp Open House - Carson - suggested donation: toy for Toys For Tots
December 14-15: Dickens Holiday Celebration - Int'l Printing Museum, Carson $18/person, includes lunch
December 14: Free picture with Santa - Shops at Rossmoor, Seal Beach - 2pm to 4pm
December 14: Snow Day! (weather permitting) Balearic Community Center- 1975 Balearic Drive, Costa Mesa 9am-12p – FREE for all!
December 17: Free day at South Coast Botanical Garden, RPV
December 18: Mary Poppins - ABC Family channel 8pm
December 18: Free Shipping Day
December 21: Naples Boat Parade & Caroling - 6pm - free
December 21: Astronomer's Club - Columbia Space Center, Downey - $2, free for members
December 24: LA County Holiday Celebration - downtown LA - free
December 24: Track Santa - NORAD
December 27: Shark Lagoon Nights - Aquarium of the Pacific - free

Where to see lights/decorations:
  • Naples
  • Sleepy Hollow, Torrance
  • Bass Pro Shops, Rancho Cucamonga


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Exploring Your Universe - UCLA

Sunday, November 17, Noon-5pm
Rain or Shine! (In case of rain, all outdoor activities will be moved indoors)
Free & Family Friendly!

http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~outreach/eyu2013.html

This is the most exciting day of science all year in Southern California.  They have many activities and demonstrations open to the general public, including outside groups like STAR Eco Station.  Activities for all ages include workshops, faculty and graduate student talks, planetarium shows, solar telescope viewing, comet making, weather tours, dinosaur fossils, physics demos, and more!

This event includes participation from Astronomy Live!, the Departments of Physics and Astronomy, Earth and Space Sciences, and Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, the Center for Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology, and IEEE.  The program was developed by graduate students, faculty, and staff in each of these departments.

DAYTIME ACTIVITIES

Astronomy (12:00 - 5:00 pm) (Court of Sciences unless otherwise noted):
- How the Sun works and solar telescope viewing
- Stellar Evolution
- Bottle Rockets
- Comet Making Demo
- Pocket Solar System and Asteroids
- Constellation Detectives
- Discovery methods for finding new worlds beyond our solar system
- Planetarium Shows (Mathematical Sciences 8th floor): Every half hour starting 12:30 pm! Pick up tickets to planetarium at the Information Booth.

Physics (12:00 - 5:00 pm) (Physics and Astronomy Building - PAB):
- Physics Demonstrations
- Lasers and Optics
- Waves and Vibrations
- Rotational Motion
- Electricity and Magnetism

Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (12:00-5:00) (Court of Sciences):
- Exploding Marshmallows--Expand marshmallows using a vacuum pump!
- Can Crushing--See how pressure can crush soda cans!
- Tornado-in-a-bottle--See and create your own vortexes!
- Cloud-in-a-bottle--See clouds being made right before your eyes!
- Portable Weather Station--Talk with experts about conditions and get an updated forecast for the day!

Chemistry (12:00-5:00 pm) (Court of Sciences):
- Find out how to make a bubble bomb for baths
- Find out what floats on top of what... and what floats on top of that!
- Watch food get frozen with liquid nitrogen
- Eat liquid nitrogen ice cream

 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Summer 2013

Most of this info is from last year, but I just found out about open swim time at CSULB (thanks RMT!).

Lakewood residents are so lucky.  They have six parks with wading pools.  Good thing LB'ers can join in.
Open 11am-4pm for kids 3-7 years old
Open everyday: Mayfair, Palms
Open Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, & Sunday: Del Valle & San Martin
Open Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, & Sunday: Bloomfield, Boyar
Wednesdays: Boyar, Del Valle, Mayfair, San Martin will be open 5pm-7:30pm

Weekends: all pools open 11am-4pm
http://www.lakewoodcity.org/services/recreation/aquatics/default.asp

In Cerritos, Liberty Park has a great little splash pad for the toddler set.
You can also cool off at the water play areas at Long Beach Towne Center and the Cerritos Library.

Splash Pad at Sigler Park in Westminster is free and open every day from Noon-5pm starting June 18 to September 3.  7200 Plaza St., Westminister.

And apparently the water was turned back on at Dotson Park in Stanton.  Free.
10350 Fern Avenue, Stanton

Atlantis Park in Garden Grove. $2 admission.  13630 Atlantis Way, Garden Grove, CA 92844

A little bit further is the Lemon Park Spray Pool. 701 S. Lemon, Fullerton 

For the older kids, CSULB has open swim hours during the summer: 11am-6pm; $2/person

Buccaneer Bay in La Mirada.  The family-fun “Buccaneer Bay” combines the excitement of a water park with pirate themed features throughout. Buccaneer Bay features a flowing river channel, three water slides, a children’s interactive play structure, zero-depth beach entry and two spray pad areas. Pirate themed elements include: a marooned ship, a dramatic skull rock, shade canopies that resemble sails, cannon walls, wharf plank benches, and crow’s nests.  Open daily in summer 10:30am-5:30pm.  $17.95/person, under 48" $12.95.  Family Friday Nights 4pm-8pm. $14.95/person, under 48" $10.95.  Parents do not need to pay if not going in the water.
13806 La Mirada Blvd.
La Mirada, CA 90638
Phone: (562) 902-3191

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Art of the Brick - Glendale

 
We checked out the new LEGO exhibit at Forest Lawn Glendale.  It might seem like a strange place to have an art exhibit, but Forest Lawn has a long tradition of offering educational programs.  FL-Glendale also has an art museum where the LEGO exhibit is housed.

Urn

Art of the Brick by Nathan Sawaya
http://brickartist.com/ 
May 21, 2013-July 21, 2013
Forest Lawn Glendale
1712 S Glendale Ave, Glendale, CA
http://www.forestlawn.com/EventDetails.aspx?ID=245&Park_id=3
Free admission and free parking
Museum is open Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm



Nathan Sawaya has specialized in creating sculptures out of LEGO bricks.  Sawaya’s ability to transform this common toy into something meaningful, his devotion to spatial perfection and the way he conceptualizes action, enables him to elevate what almost every child has played with into the status of contemporary art.

There are about 25 sculptures in this exhibit, ranging from a multicolor peace sign to large crayons with the paper coming off of one.  Most of the sculptures are of the human form.  A bust removing his face from his head, a boy looking at his reflection in water, a figure in despair.

This is a small exhibit, so don't drive an hour to just see this program.  Like I said this location also has an art gallery and the current display "Light and Color" is a collection of remarkable stained glass.  There is also an impressive display of bronze statues.  And in the Hall of The Crucifixion-Resurrection next door are hourly showings of The Crucifixion and The Resurrection paintings.  Walk out the back of the museum for restrooms and an amazing view of Glendale.

But don't stop there.  Forest Lawn Glendale is 300 acres and has its own sights.  Check out the mosaic of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence and the 13ft tall statue of George Washington.  There are, also, white swans on the lake.  Of course, many famous people are interned at Forest Lawn.  The mega famous like Michael Jackson are behind locked gates, but you can see the final resting places of such stars as Jimmy Stewart and Elizabeth Taylor.

And since you're already in Glendale, perhaps get a bite to eat at Americana at Brand.  This is a mall designed by the same firm as the Grove in LA.  I recommend the Granville Cafe on Brand Blvd outside of the mall proper.

Is someone in your family a science fiction fan or loves old bookstores?  Remember those old bookstores that used to be in every city?  Well, there's still one left in Glendale.  Mystery & Imagination is at 238 N Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91203. http://www.yelp.com/biz/bookfellows-mystery-and-imagination-glendale


If you're not tired, yet, you can end the day at the Griffith Observatory which is about 10 minutes away.