Weekly Fun: Events to Guide Your Free Time

Photo: OCFair/Flickr/Creative Commons License

This week, get out there and just do you. Don't let other people tell you how you should be living your life -- create something, start a DIY project, splurge on a ticket to some seriously hard-to-find craft beers. After a holiday-shortened week, coming back to the workaday life is always a struggle, so it's important that you put yourself first when thinking about great events to make it out to this week.

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Start things off by joining one of the ongoing printmaking sessions at the Craft and Folk Art Museum on Wilshire Boulevard. The classes run about $20 and provide casual instruction on how to collograph, work with monotype and generally get your fingernails dirty. What a great way to spread your own creativity out into the world. If you'd like to get soaked up into the written word instead, get to Book Soup on Wednesday night to hear Matthew Specktor read from his latest novel "American Dream Machine". The L.A.-based author tackles a local subject: talent agencies, troubled Hollywood children and the failures of the entertainment industry. Or celebrate the animal kingdom at the L.A. Zoo in Griffith Park, all while you gaze at the stars and listen to wonderful local bands. The ongoing Roaring Nights events at the zoo bring DJs, comedians, food trucks and cash bars to the feet of the city's most nocturnal party animals -- all for your human enjoyment.

If you really need a change of pace, get out of town early on Friday to start experiencing the OC County Fair. Taking place on the expansive fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, the annual OC County Fair is a fun adventure for everyone in the family. There will be animal exhibits, rides, live music and the always outlandish fair food. This year will see bands like Alan Jackson, the Counting Crows, the Wallflowers, Weezer and more. The OC party runs Wednesdays through Sundays until August 11th. Or you can stick around town to catch Demetri Martin at Largo on La Cienega. The longtime stand up comedian / all-around funnyman is doing his Infrequent Show with Uncommon Guests, which means Martin will be asking along some of his famously interesting friends to help round out the show. This iteration of the show will feature a musician and a magician, plus whatever wonderful things Martin can cook up himself. And speaking of wonder, the annual TwentyWonder charity event is back in Echo Park on Saturday, offering uniquely absurd views on the world. There will be performers on hand, exhibits to amaze, art to mystify and plenty of Derby Dolls to make sure you stay on your best behavior. The annual event is put on by Jim Hodgson of Mystery Science Theater 3000, in conjunction with Sam Simon of The Simpsons fame.

If you'd rather stick to the drink, get down to Noble Ale Works in Anaheim on Saturday evening. That's where you'll find the OC Beer Blog 2nd Anniversary party, a beery good time that promises to deliver on the drinks. In fact, Noble Ale Works is collaborating with the popular beer blog on a special brew just for the occasion, to go along with the food truck parked outside and the raucous Rage Against the Machine cover band playing inside. And on Sunday, Studio City's outpost of Stour -- the popular beer and burger joint -- is hosting a Beer Fest for Beer Geeks. The aptly titled festival is bringing together 18 national breweries to show off their skills with sour ales, barrel-aged beers or other singular pours that you won't likely find again anywhere else. Each of the breweries, from Drake's in Oakland to Jolly Pumpkin from Michigan, will be providing two beers across two sessions for the $60 event. And if a little summer drinking doesn't sound like your personal idea of a really great time, perhaps you're beyond hope.

For more weekly events visit kcet.org/events.

About the Author

Farley Elliott is a freelance food writer and comedian. He currently writes for KCET.org, SeriousEats.com, LAist.com, and L.A. Weekly. You can catch Farley doing comedy at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in Hollywood.
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