Happy Memorial Day Weekend! Forget the solstice, or end of school or return or warm weather (it never left!)—for us, Memorial Day weekend is the official start of summer. It’s time to hit the beach, the pool, the BBQs and picnics and embrace all the family fun that a summer in LA has to offer. There are baseball games and odd nights, rubber ducky races and fiestas, Cajun music & Clifford and even a Harry Potter Marathon.

annenberg

Downtown

Kids Run the Bases
In a Dodger year when up is down, injuries abound and we’re off to a wild start, it’s nice to know some things never change. On Sundays, kids can always run the bases, and we always love our boys in blue! Sun., 1:10 p.m. Elysian Park. $20 & up. All ages. Event details.

Griffith Park

Odd Nights at the Autry
Odd Nights brings live music, foods, crafts and fashions for sale and there’s arts & crafts, bounce houses, slides and face painting for kids. Bring a blanket, discover the artisans in the area or just join in a big community music and food fest. Fri., 6 p.m.-11 p.m. Griffith Park. Free admission. All ages. Event details.

Mid-City

Free Day, Free Concerts at LACMA for Memorial Day
Another Monday off, another free day at LACMA with the perfect way to entertain and enlighten the whole family!  Entry to the museum, bilingual tours, programs, art-making activities, and live music are all free on Monday. You can also come Friday for Jazz, Sat for Latin Sounds (both free concerts!) and Sunday afternoon for family art. Mon., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Miracle Mile. Free. All ages. Event details.

San Gabriel Valley

How Fast is Your Ducky?
Head out to Kidspace for the annual Rubber Ducky race that’s as photogenic is it is fun! Sat.-Mon., 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Pasadena. $11. Ages 2 & up. Event details.

Westside

Harry Potter Marathon
If your little wizard can’t get enough Potter, this weekend long event (4 movies Saturday and 4 on Sunday) should tide them for a spell! Sat. & Sun., Noon. Santa Monica. $15-$30. Ages 6 & up. Event details.

Topanga Days
This weekend-long bash includes live music, a Kid’s Zone, music, food and loads of old fashioned games like sack races, a baby derby, a bat spinning relay, 3 legged races, pie eating contests, egg tosses, a water balloon way, watermelon seed spitting and more.  Sat.-Mon., 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Topanga. $15-$25. All ages. Event details.

Annenberg Pool Opens
With spectacular views, splash pad, children’s play area, gallery, historic pool, and Marion Davies Guest House there’s something for everyone to enjoy at the Beach House, and it’s now open weekends through September. (It opens weekdays, too, starting June 8.) Sat.-Mon., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Santa Monica. $4-$10. All ages. Event details.

San Fernando Valley

Clifford, The Big Red Dog
See Clifford and all the bone-ifide hands-on interactive fun at the new exhibit that opens this weekend at the Discovery Cube LA. Learn to drive a ferry, work at the fish and chips shack, play music, work at the post office and library and even visit Clifford’s Big Red Doghouse. Sat.-Mon., 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Los Angeles. $10. Ages 2-6. Event details.

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Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade
It’s not a holiday without a home town parade with all the expected trimmings: marching groups, food, music, and local vendors. Mon.,11 a.m. Canoga Park. Free. All ages. Event details.

South Bay

Fiesta Hermosa
Enjoy the seaside fest filled with art, music (two live stages) and amazing food, like the Hermosa Beach Lifeguards’ famous fish tacos. At the Kiddie Carnival there’s a 30 foot slide, mechanical rides, rock climbing wall and bungee jump, pony rides, a petting zoo, and face painters—all sure to delight the little ones. Sat.-Mon., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Hermosa Beach. Free admission. All ages. Event details.

Got Gamer? Gamex 2015
Gamex 2015 features dozens of events designed especially for pint size gamers, from role-playing game sessions to clay-miniature strategy games and spaceship bridge simulations. Fri.-Mon., Noon-6 p.m. El Segundo. $15 & up. Ages 6 & up. Event details.

Simi Valley

The Bayou Comes to the Valley With the Cajun Festival
The Cajun & Zydeco stage features international and award winning music like Big Bad Voo Doo Daddy, Guitar Shorty, Big Brother and the Holding Company, the Creole Cowboys and plenty of kids perform on the Kids Stage. Plus, this family friendly event has a giant kids area and loads of food that will make you think you’re in New Orleans! Sat. & Sun., 10:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Simi Valley. Free-$25. All ages. Event details.

Pool or BBQ? What Memorial Day traditions signal the start of summer to you?

—Meghan Rose

photo credits: Meghan Rose and Andrew Butitta via Creative Commons