This weekend the toughest thing will be deciding which amazing events you’ll have to miss. You could bring the kids to Shark Week. Or to see what happens when Harry Potter meets Hamlet. Bike on empty streets, see Sumos wrestle, visit a summer star fest, or plunge into a dive in movie. And that’s not taking into account the Children’s Festival on the lot or the Funkiest Punks in town.

The day long Children's Festival of the Arts has become a widely anticipated community event created by the Hollywood Arts Council. It is a day of fun for the whole family, filled with cultural arts performances, music and activities for children of all ages. For many, this annual festival is one of the few outlets in which families with young children can be exposed to the arts and multi-cultural performances. This festival not only introduces young children to art, but involves them with performances and art workshops representing the rich and diverse cultural fabric which comprises Hollywood and Los Angeles.


Natsumatsuri Family Festival
It’s the annual summer celebration featuring Japanese and Japanese American performances, crafts, and activities. There will be face painting, origami folding, a scavenger hunt, karaoke, bon odori, screen printing, taiko drumming and loads more. Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Little Tokyo. Free. All ages. Event details.

Griffith Park

World Elephant Day at the Zoo
Celebrate all things elephants at the LA Zoo for World Elephant Day with the real elephants and activities for kids that include story time, a “medical clinic” for budding veterinarians, and craft & art stations. Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Griffith Park. $15-$20. All ages. Event details.

Hollywood & Mid-City

Crafting Care Packages for Military Families
Learn to make paracord survival bracelets to send in care packages to active military and first responders. Teach kids the art of giving back. Sun., 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. Miracle Mile. $5-$7. All ages. Event details.

Hollywood Children’s Festival of Arts
This family day is filled with cultural arts performances, music, and activities for kids like making wands, dream catchers, masks, puppets, calligraphy and improv, all on the Paramount lot. Sun., noon-4:30 p.m. Hollywood. Free. All ages. Event details.


CicLAvia: Culver Meets Venice
Bike from Scarlett O’Hara’s Tara to Muscle Beach! Get your bikes, trikes, skates, strollers and sneakers ready for LA’s biggest block party on a route that stretches from downtown Culver City all the way to Venice Beach. Sun., 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Culver City to Venice Beach. Free. All ages. Event details.

Harry Potter Hamlet
Brought to you by the brilliant Actors’ Gang, this production crosses two beloved stories to create a magical and suspenseful journey of family, friendship, justice, and coming of age. To cast a spell or not to cast a spell, that is the question… Sat. & Sun., 11 a.m. Culver City. Free. Ages 3 & up. Event details.

South LA

The Funky Punks
This interactive, physical comedy clown troupe dazzles with spectacular yet silly circus feats using puppets, stilts, juggling clubs, dancing, trampoline tricks, a super slippery slide table, the human body and even a plunger. Sun., 1 p.m. & 3:30 p.m. La Mirada. $10-$15. All ages. Event details.

South Bay

Shark Week Attacks
Shark fin-atics get ready! Shark Week is back at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium where you can catch special presentations, amazing shark specimens and lots more. Fri. & Sat., noon-4 p.m. San Pedro. $1-$5. All ages. Event details.

San Fernando Valley

Summer Star Festival
Bring ‘em in their jammies to meet astronomers who talk about about our solar system and beyond. Peek through telescopes and learn about nocturnal animals and ecology from naturalists. Sat., 7:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m. Agoura Hills. Free. All ages. Event details.

Santa Clarita Valley

Dive In Movie Night
See a movie from the pool! Bring bathing suits and inter-tubes and splash and swim until it gets dark enough to see Planes: Fire & Rescue. Fri., 7 p.m. Santa Clarita. $7. All ages. Event details.

Long Beach

Sumo USA Championships
See men and women, heavyweights and lightweights all compete in the US Sumo Championships.  One match will make your kids fans for life. Sat., 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Long Beach. $30-$75. All ages. Event details.

Super Speedy Sprint Boat Races
Grab a spot on the beach and prepare to watch some of the fastest Sprint boats in the country race. Sat. & Sun., 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Long Beach. $5-$20. All ages. Event details.

Well? How did you decide to #RockTheWeekend? Share the pictures of your awesome adventures with us on instagram when you tag them #rockedtheweekend.

—Meghan Rose

Photo credits: Children’s Festival of the Arts