Spring is in the air, and L.A. is blooming with special events, activities, and more to help you and your family enjoy the season. We’ve put together a list of our fun-filled favorites, making sure there’s something for everyone. Grab your planner and pencil and get ready to scroll through all the fantastic weekend outings March has to offer.

Have a Whale of a Time

Each March, 40-50 whales pass by Dana Point each day, earning its reputation as the “Whale Capital of the West.” Take in the city’s annual Festival of Whales, which includes whale watching boat tours and a whole host of other activities for kids of all ages. Browse art shows featuring works from local award-winning artists and high school art students or watch the 3rd annual Cardboard Classic & Dinghy Dash featuring a beach of captains racing in the harbor with nothing but a paddle and their cardboard ships.  Budding artists can help to paint a life-sized whale, and if you’re feeling lucky, compete in the Diamond Dig and to search for buried treasure ranging from toys and prizes to one beautiful piece of diamond jewelry. Don’t forget about the Festival of Whales Parade, which kicks off the whole event with sea-themed floats and more.

Good to Know: The festival encompasses two weekends, multiple locations and individual events. Be sure to plan your visit in advance with the help of the website. Mar. 3-4, Mar. 10-11. Event Details.

photo: Philippe Bourseiller/Getty Images Reportage

Walk Like an Egyptian

Celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the discovery of King Tut’s tomb with the brand-new exhibit KING TUT: Treasures of the Golden Pharoah. Little historians will marvel at golden jewelry and elaborate carvings making up the largest assembly of artifacts and gold from Tutankhamun’s tomb ever on public display outside of Egypt. It’s a rare opportunity to see these storied treasures; forty percent of these artifacts will be leaving Egypt for the first and last time before returning home following the tour for permanent display at the new Grand Egyptian Museum currently under construction.

The exhibit includes nine distinct experiential galleries with 3D visuals, digital content, 360-degree theatrical manifestations, custom soundscapes and more.  As you might expect from an exhibit at the California Science Center, families can expect to learn how science helped to reveal information about King Tut’s health and lineage and how modern technology is assisting in discovering tombs and analyzing existing ones in new ways.

Good to Know: Want to make a day of it? Purchase tickets to Mysteries of Egypt starring Omar Sharif and playing on a 7-story IMAX® screen. Opens Mar. 24. Event Details.

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Fly a Kite

Send the whole family’s spirit soaring at the Festival of the Kite on the Redondo Beach Pier. Celebrating its 44th year, the longest-running kite festival in Southern California plays host to both expert kite flyers and novices alike. If your little one has ever asked you to fly a kite, this is the perfect place to do it while picking up some pro tips along the way. But getting your own kite airborne isn’t a must to enjoy the fun – get artistic creating your own kite or simply enjoy the view and the sand beneath your toes. Mar. 11.  Event Details.

Good to Know: There’s lots more to enjoy at the Pier; check out our guide to family fun along the Redondo Beach Pier.

 

Go for the Gold

What kid hasn’t dreamed of finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? Pack up your four-leaf clover hunters for a morning of St. Patrick’s Day fun in Malibu that includes a search for a pot of gold. This event will delight the littlest leprechauns who can take in a story, craft an art activity and nibble on snacks. There’s also a special surprise guest and giveaway planned. Two gold hunt times are available (10 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.); sign-ups will be offered at the check-in booth at 9:45 a.m. Mar. 16. Event Details.

photo: Big City Moms

Browse Baby Gear

Expecting and new moms will want to check out everything that Big City Moms’ Biggest Baby Shower Ever (held at The Skirball Center) has to offer. Feeling overwhelmed about building that baby registry? Test drive gear including strollers from brands like Bugaboo and Uppababy and carriers from Ergobaby and Tula. In addition to browsing the latest in baby products, attendees can take in seminars from top parenting experts and are eligible to win prizes including car seats, diaper bags and more.

Good to Know: There are a variety of ticket options, many of which come with freebies like a carrier, gift bag and more. Mar. 7. Event Details.

 

photo: Descanso Gardens

Flower Power

Celebrate Cherry Blossom Month at Descanso Gardens. Different than their usual annual Cherry Blossom Festival, they’ll be hosting individual events that families can enjoy all month long. Skip your morning treadmill and take the kids on a spring bloom walk where you can learn about cherry blossoms, flowering trees, and other seasonal favorites. Budding artists will be delighted to take in one of the origami hands-on demonstrations where they can even try their hand at it with the help of seasoned pros.

Good to Know: While you’re there, be sure to take a ride on the Enchanted Railroad, a 1/8th replica of a diesel train. Throughout Mar. Event Details.

 

Run for It

With 24,000 participants, thousands of volunteers, hundreds of thousands of spectators (and numerous road closures), the Los Angeles Marathon is hard to miss. The scenic “Stadium to the Sea” course spans the city, starting at Dodger Stadium and finishing near the Santa Monica Pier. While 26.2 miles isn't something to tackle on the fly, consider walking the kids down to the route to cheer on participants as they run. You might also be lucky enough to see one of the dozens of bands that play along the course, or lift your spirits at Cheer Alley, near Mile 18 and home to over 600 local cheerleaders encouraging runners to the finish line.

Good to Know: Download the event app to track the course and more. Mar. 18. Event Details.

 

photo: Meghan Rose

Make Tea Disappear

Imagine Queen Elizabeth meeting Harry Houdini and that, in a nutshell, is the best way to describe the Langham Hotel’s Imagine Tea. Aspiring mini magicians will enjoy close-up magic courtesy of famed Magic Castle junior performers as they sip on pink lemonade and fruit-infused caffeine-free tea while nibbling on tea sandwiches and whimsical desserts. Presented quarterly, this spellbinding tea party benefits local children’s non-profit organizations with The Langham Huntington, Pasadena donating a portion of each tea party’s proceeds to such charities. Mar. 4. Event Details.

photo: Smorgasburg via flickr

Chow Down

Westside foodie families, rejoice! Downtown L.A.’s legendary Smorgasburg is popping up at the Santa Monica Pier. Sample delicious delights from over 70 vendors including goa-taco, Amazebowls, Shrimp Daddy, Lobsterdamus, Big Mozz and more. Once your bellies are full, browse special popup vendors, experience unique shopping and take in all that the pier has to offer. Mar. 10. Event Details.

What’s your favorite spring activity? Let us know in the comments below! 

—Jenny Heller

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