It’s fiesta time in the Southland – three parties set the stage for family fun in the sun this
Labor Day weekend. Fiesta Hermosa in Hermosa Beach is an arts fair that also features a huge Kiddie Carnival area, plus live music and great foods. The city of San Gabriel commemorates 240 years of its beloved mission with another fiesta – this one is more historical and cultural in nature. And our very own city has a birthday to celebrate: Head to Olvera Street on Saturday evening as Los Angeles celebrates 230 years with a colorful, outdoor fiesta on the Plaza. Several more events are visit-worthy – take a look!

Los Angeles

American Indian Culture Day
The Autry’s Family Day program focuses on the American Indian sport of stick ball. Activities at the Autry’s Family Day include two American Indian-style stick ball games (1:30 pm & 3:30 pm), Navajo storytelling with Harrison Lowe, a gallery family tour led by museum teachers, hands-on exploration carts, and live American Indian music. Sun., 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Free with museum admission. 5 & up. Event details.

Happy Birthday, L.A.!
Our fair city turns 230 years old on September 4, and the families can come celebrate this impressive milestone at Olvera Street, which hosts a festive reception in the Cathedral Plaza with flags, banners, color guards, bag pipes, authentic foods, and entertainment. Sat., 6:45 pm to 9:00 pm. Free. All ages. Event details.

Beach Cities

Fiesta Hermosa
Grown-ups can take in the amazing talents of  270 featured artists, while children will want to head straight for the Kiddie Carnival, which features a 30-foot slide, mechanical rides, a rock climbing wall, bungee jump, a petting zoo, and much more. Sat-Mon., 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Free. All ages. Event Details.

West Side

Enchanted Fairy Tale Theater
Costumed actors at the Santa Monica Playhouse invite little ones and their grown-ups to  partake in story-telling, sing-a-longs, crafts, face-painting, theater games, refreshments, and re-enactments of fairytales, myths, and legends. Space is very limited, so call soon to reserve a spot! Sat-Sun., 10:30 am to 12 noon and 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm. Children $15, adults free. Ages 4-10. Event details.

Malibu Chili Cook-Off and Carnival
Grown-ups can indulge in tasty, spicy fare; kids can take in tame and wild carnival rides, and everyone can enjoy live music and dance performances during the Malibu Kiwanis Club’s Thirtieth Annual Chili Cook-Off and Carnival. Fri., 6:00 pm -10:00 pm; Sat-Sun 10:00 am to 10:00 pm; Mon 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Adults $10 per day, Children (5-11) $5 per day. All ages. Event details.


Fiesta de San Gabriel

The Mission San Gabriel celebrates its 240 anniversary – wow! – with religious, historical and cultural festivities. Families can expect historical re-enactments, free birthday cake, a Blessing of the Animals ceremony, displays and exhibits, live entertainment, and much more. Fri., 6:00 pm to 12:00am; Sat-Sun., 3:00 pm to 12:00 am. Free. All ages. Event details.

Farmer Days at Kidspace
Kidspace has a little E-I-E-I-Ohhhh in store for children, including a petting zoo with farm animals, butter churning demonstrations, and “bringing in the crops.”  Children are encouraged to wear their overalls for a this down-home, country-style affair. Sat-Mon., 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Free with museum admission. 2-8. Event details.

Boddy’s Big Backyard
Descanso Gardens hosts a Labor Day party that features live American rock and bluegrass music, picnicking on the Main Lawn, and – especially for the kiddies – two Teddy Bears Picnic storytimes in the Rose Pavilion, crafts, and a guided, toddler-centric stroll through the gardens. Mon., 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Free with Garden admission. All ages. Event details.

Worth the Drive

LA County Fair
The LA County Fair kicks off its 4-week run this weekend, offering visitors an endless assortment of agricultural exhibits and live entertainment. Our vote for best family areas? FairView Farms, Pets Ahoy, and The Land of Frogs, Princesses and Knights. Sep 3-Oct 2, hours vary. $9-$17. All ages. Event details.                                                                                

– Sarah Hilbert