In honor of Bookfest this weekend downtown at Grand Park, why don’t you imitate a favorite character from a book?  Make like Huck Finn and take a fishing weekend.  Be Dr. Doolittle and talk with the animals at the teaching zoo.  Explore native American stories at the Satwiwa Center, see a show by Wind in the Willows author, or enter into Alice’s world with the Mad Hatter.  Choose your own adventure!



Taste of Dance
Does your little one like to move it, move it?  From the Singin’ in the Rain dance, to Pulp Fiction‘s groovy twist to Kevin Bacon’s Footloose moves, learn iconic steps from your favorite flick. Taste-test a variety of styles for just a buck a lesson. Sat., 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Downtown. $1/lesson. All ages. Event details.

Bookfest at Grand Park
Read your heart out at Grand Park.  There will be loads of book-ish activities as well as music from Birdie’s Playhouse, the Story Pirates will be telling a Yarrrrrn or two, and there will be tasty snacks and time to play in the fountain. Fri. – Sat., 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. Downtown. Free. All ages. Event details.


Celebrate César Chávez
Head to the Zimmer to honor Latino labor leader César E. Chávez and his life of community organizing and activism with arts & crafts.  There will also be a special performance by an Aztec Dance group from East Los Angeles.  Sun., 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Miracle Mile. $5-$8. Ages 2-8. Event details.

Pasadena Area

Free Family Festival at The Pacific Asia Museum
Celebrate the art of calligraphy, from ancient brush work to contemporary interpretations with hands-on crafts, demonstrations and more. Sun., 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. Pasadena. Free. All ages. Event details.

The Huck Finn Fishing Derby and Campout
Take part in outdoor family fun however you like – you can spend a night under the stars at the campout, get up early in the morning to catch rainbow trout at the fishing derby or just come hang out and be part of the celebration. Fri. – Sun., Various times. Sierra Madre. $10-$65. All ages. Event details.


Happy Birthday, Little Tramp
Charlie Chaplin’s Little Tramp turns 100! If you’ve never seen a Chaplin film with your kids, this is the perfect reason and time to do so. Shorts featuring the beloved character have recently been restored and they’re coming to the big screen at the Aero. Fri., 7:30 p.m. Santa Monica. $9-$11. Ages 4 and up. Event details.

The Reluctant Dragon
The Reluctant Dragon is a charming tale about a shy, peaceful dragon that explores the themes of bullying, self-confidence, and self-esteem with a positive, empowering message. See this lesser known work by the author of “The Wind in the Willows.” Sat. & Sun., 11 a.m. Santa Monica. $10 – $35. Ages 4 and up. Event details.

Mad Hatter Tea Party
The mad hatter in Wonderland was inspired by the true crazy and imaginative hats made by milliners of the 19th century.  Today kids can make their own mad hat and then partake in a festive tea party. Sun., 11 a.m. Westwood. Free. Ages 5 and up. Event details.


Native American Campfire Stories
Enjoy the sunset and a roaring campfire while listening to tales of native culture and the songs of the Satwiwa. Sun., 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m. Newbury Park. Free. All ages. Event details.

Worth the Drive

Spring Spectacular at the Teaching Zoo
Swing, slither or soar on over to this wild event. Watch entertaining animal shows, get a sneak peek behind the scenes, interact with wild animal trainers and their furry friends and more. Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Moorpark. $7-$10. All ages. Event details.

If you’ve got a kiddo in a LAUSD school, you’ve got Monday off, in honor of César Chávez.  Be sure to check out what fun activities are happening all over town on this spring holiday.

-Meghan Rose

Photo credits: Meghan Rose and the Pacific Asia Museum