Pick of the Week is this Sunday, Fiesta Broadway celebrates Cinco de Mayo!

Pick of the Week, is Cinco de Mayo’s biggest celebration, Fiesta Broadway which is happening SUNDAY May 8th…..how can we let that get by us without celebrating? Yes the actual day, lands on a Thursday this year, but Fiesta Broadway has to be my pick of the week since it is a much bigger party. See Thursday events for more Cinco De Mayo celebrations.

But remember, wherever you decide to go, pick a designated driver or take a taxi. You can always bus it to your designation and cab it home. HAVE FUN, cause CINCO DE MAYO only happens once a year,,,ok this time it is extended till the weekend. So Party ON!!!

The FREE Fiesta Broadway Festival is celebrating the 22nd year and runs from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. This 12 block festival (on Broadway, fifth and Temple Streets) features L.A. favorites Ozomatli, the lauded and original Mexican Institute of Sound and traditional regional artists Diana Reyes and Carmen Jara. This Free event also includes traditional dancers, food and vendor booths. Come hungry, they always have great food and get there early. http://www.fiestabroadway.la/; To print out a map, for exact location, go to http://bit.ly/jAyl13.

Wednesday, May 4th

Come and support Daniel Samakow at the Land Use and Planning Committee Meeting which runs from 6:45 -9:00 pm at the Oakwood Community Center to extend the hours of his restaurant, Danny’s. Due to the history of prior occupants, Dannys has always been forced to close early….too early.

Daniel is one of Venice's biggest supporters. is the force behind the Venice Art Crawl, the Venice sign and much more. Now, you have a chance to help this guy who gives so much to the community. Come out and show you support.

What gorgeous weather, why not enjoy the beach and stop in to see The Venice Street Legends. They play every Wednesday from 5:00 pm till 10:00 pm at the Venice Bistro (323 Ocean Front Walk in Venice, 90291. These guys will keep you dancing till the sun goes down. Happy hour specials available. No cover charge.

Also remember, Santa Monica Place Mall offers the “Movies on the Deck” series. Tonight’s movie is The Breakfast Club and once again will be held on the rooftop at The Santa Monica Place Mall... Happening every Wednesday, they have started doing it on Mondays too. Check their website for more info.  Movies start at 7pm and yes it’s FREE, but come early if you want to grab a great seat. Remember, it is outdoors, so bring a sweater or your honey for warmth. There are heaters on the deck. You're welcome to bring blankets or your own chairs, but there will also be seating there. This free event and runs from 7:00 pm till 10:00 pm. http://bit.ly/kZTSlN.

Miss Jessica and The Sugar Shack Attack will be performing at Danny's Bistro & Bar by Venice Beach, located at 23 Windward Ave. Venice, 90291 from 7:00 pm till 10:30pm.
(NORTH of Venice Blvd~WEST of Pacific Ave and Windward Circle). 310-566-5610;

Thursday, May 5th, Cinco de Mayo!
What are you doing for Cinco de Mayo….? In case you don’t know, Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for the Fifth of May…duh! The day honors the Battle of Puebla, where the Mexican Army celebrated a huge victory in 1862.
Yes the actual day, lands on a Thursday this year, but so what? It’s another excuse for a party! For years I dragged myself down to Olvera Street which is still the fun and happening place to be on the actual day too. But if you live on the Westside, it is a bit of a trek. So depending on where you live check out my list and enjoy….but be safe. Pick a designated driver or take a taxi. CINCO DE MAYO only happens once a year and this year we get to celebrate it through the weekend.

We’ve got lots of choices for Cinco De Mayo parties. Be aware that the downtown party will always be hoppin….tonight but they are also having the Fiesta Broadway festival this SUNDAY celebrating Cinco de Mayo. So you may want to celebrate closer to your home depending on where you live, then spend the day downtown on Sunday.  Hey why not make a day of it?
But tonight, Olvera Street will always have a party. They are a bit behind, as of NOON on Wed, the day before, they had not yet updated their website. Guess someone started the party early. However, I did call the info number, they never called me back, perhaps you will have better luck. However, I have been to this many times and they always have mariachis, folklorico dancers, piñatas and other activities for the kids at El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Site on Olvera Street in Downtown Los Angeles. Here is the website info, maybe by today (Thursday) They will have the info up. (213) 485-8372, www.olvera-street.com/html/fiestas.html, www.elpueblo.lacity.org.

LA Plaza puts on its own Cinco de Mayo party from 4pm to 7pm with music, crafts, and free admission to exhibitions LA Starts Here! and Calle Principal. The event includes roaming mariachi LA, KPFK DJ Betto Arcos (“Global Village”) will spin a variety of French and Mexican tunes. In the garden, local artist collective LA Art Lab will lead all-ages Cinco de Mayo-themed art workshops, while the Border Grill truck serves up delectible modern Mexican fare (for purchase). http://lapca.org/cinco-de-mayo-laplaza.
Also downtown, gotta stop in the wonderful restaurant, Mas Malo, at 515 West 7th St. (1st Floor) Los Angeles, CA 90014. This place starts early at 11am to close. Really tasty cuisine. They are also having drink & Food Specials (213) 985-4332; http://malorestaurant.com/.

Are you up to a pubcrawl? If so, Cinco De Mayo is the day to do it. That's right! There will be a pubcrawl on TWO Days!!! Drink Specials: $2 Draft Cervezas; $4 Tequila Shots; $5 Margaritas. Thursday, May 5th, 2011- 12pm to 9:30pm, and Saturday, May 7th, 2011 - 12pm to 9:30pm.

Two pubcrawls in all for you and your friends to have the time of your life and go to all of Hollywood's Famous Bars without having to pay a cover. You can buy tickets on Eventbrite, where you will see a full list of the bars. But be aware some of the venues offer different times for the drink specials….so check with them. http://bit.ly/lxe87D.

Enjoy margaritas at Border Grill with two locations one downtown at 445 S. Figueroa St., LA, 90071 and one in Santa Monica (1445 4th St). There will also be an additional food truck downtown at LA Plaza (see above), depending on where you choose to spend it you are set. Border Grill specializes in modern Mexican food and have yummy specials for this historic day too such as $5.00 margaritas, $3.00 tacos and $5.00 Quesadillas. Check their website for times, because the Santa Monica location, at 1445 4th St. is doing an extended happy hour too and you can save some bucks. Santa Monica (310) 451-1655; Downtown (213) 486-5171.
If you are into the downtown scene and feel like partying into the night, check out LUCHA VaVOOM's Cinco de Mayan Party. Held at the Mayan (1038 S. Hill Street, LA 90015), it will cost you $45.00 per ticket, but don’t just show up, make sure to visit their site to purchase them as they do sell out. The event features masked luchadores, wrestling, burlesque dancers, donkey photo booth, tamales, tequila, and Mexi-Lucha-Burlesque.  http://luchavavoom.com/; http://clubmayan.com/.

Or Stay in the Venice/Santa Monica area

Cabo Cantina always has a wild scene. Located at 30 Washington Boulevard. Venice/Marina Del Rey, CA 90292, right by the beach, they offer great food and margaritas and you can take advantage of their yummy happy hour too from 4:00 pm till 8:00 pm, they are offering 99 cent coronitas (mini Coronas, as long as they last)    2 for 1 drinks 4-8 . (310) 306-2500; http://www.thecabocantina.com/.

  Baja Cantina 311 Washington Blvd., Marina del Rey, CA 90292-5129.  Charges to get in $10.00.  No specials here…boohoo. (310) 821-2252;

LA Cabana has a fun back patio and will also be having food and drink specials and music. (38 Rose Ave., Venice, corner of Lincoln & Rose). 310-392-7973; http://www.lacabanavenice.com/.

Or drop in at their sister restaurant, Casablanca 220 Lincoln Blvd., Venice, (corner of Lincoln & Rose). This place has great food and will be jumpin’ with live music. (310) 392-5751; http://www.casablancarestaurant.net/.

In case you are not feelin the Cinco De Mayo vibe, here is the one art event I have chosen for tonight.
CB Gallery (Caporale/Bleicher) presents Lizzy Waronker, from 7:00pm-10:00pm, with her new series of found-object sculptures emerges from the junk pile of day-to-day life – broken crockery, yellowed photographs, tattered mink vestments and all. CB Gallery is ocated at 355 North La Brea Avenue, LA,90036 and will also be open for this Saturday’s Miracle Mile Art Walk. 323 545 6018; http://caporalebleicher.com/.

And the weekend is here, yet again.

Friday May 6thth

What? Is it time for First Fridays on Abbot Kinney again?

In case you have never been to First Fridays on Abbot Kinney, the festivities start around 6:30 pm. Stores stay open till around 9:00 pm.….With the recent arrival of food trucks upon the boulevard, some stores have decided to close early. However, here is a list of some shops that have confirmed with me that they will indeed be open and participating in the event. So start with these, and I’m sure you will stumble on more.
You may want to start here at Joe's Restaurant, since it’s located on the North end.  Get there early and snag a table (call to reserve) while you enjoy a delicious dinner with some drinks and dancing. Or pop in later for standing room only. Still fun, but a bit crowed.

Joe's Restaurant invites you to a night of hot Jipsy jazz in their Icy Hot Club of California with some live local bands in this charming French speakeasy. 7:30 to Midnight.

Reservations are suggested. RSVP at Joe's Restaurant, Call (310) 399-5811, or email joesevent@yahoo.com. Joe's Restaurant is located at 1023 Abbot Kinney Blvd. Venice CA 90291.  http://www.joesrestaurant.com/.
Now continue on, there is a lovely shop called Altered Space Gallery 1221 Abbot Kinney Blvd will be open and serving refreshments, as well. 310-452-8121; http://www.alteredspacegallery.com/.

Mystic Journey Bookstore 1319 Abbot Kinney, a wonderful new age bookstore, is having an art opening and reception from 7:00 pm till 9:00 pm. 310.399.7070; http://www.mysticjourneybookstore.com/.

 Then across the street, stop in You Need a Sofa 1344 Abbot Kinney Blvd who will be open as well serving cheese and crackers.. 310 399-3928; http://www.youneedasofa.com/.

Back again across the street off Santa Clara, is Nitespa,1301 Abbot Kinney who will be open and offers all kinds of little treats and specials during the evening. They always create a fun festive vibe. Enjoy their handpicked spa soundtrack, rosemary water and organic teas. There will also be art and jewelry for sale. Open till 10:00 pm. mini-makeovers and specials on all treatments. The entrance is on Santa Clara. 310.396.5122; http://www.nitespa.com/.

Keep going north and on right side is Ananda 1356 Abbot Kinney Blvd is offering Cup Cup and coffee cart, tasty food for sale. in their back yard. - Skylark 1356 Abbot Kinney Blvd will also be open. (310) 399-41861356.

Right next door, is Bohemian Exchange who sells beautiful clothes and accessories. Bohemian Exchange is located at 1358 Abbot Kinney, at California 310.396.3044; http:/www.bohemianexchange.com;

Back across the street again, The G2 Gallery (1503 Abbot Kinney) presents J.J. L'Heureux: Faces from the Southern Ocean. This work is from a series of photographs of the Weddell Sea and the Continental ice of Antarctica from Atka Bay to Halley Station. Eric Hanson and Greg Downing will be showing their photography as well. Eric kuf will be performing as well. A $5 Admission at the door will directly support environmental charities. 310-452-2842; http://www.theg2gallery.com.

You'll have to stop into Zingara Trading 1507 Abbot Kinney for their Fiesta First Friday event. Now, owner, Donna Humphrey knows how to get into the spirit, offering chips and salsa and their famous S'mores…Yum! They have one of-a-kind clothing and accessories….simply gorgeous and are also have great sales too. 310 392-6424;  http://www.zingaratrading.com/

And across the street at one of my favorite furniture stores, Tumbleweed and Dandelion 1502 Abbot Kinney Blvd will be open with wine and snacks and a Furniture sale too!  310-450-4310.

Gumbo Kinney in conjunction with Robin Murez, will be having a lovely event in the beautiful glass garden known as Robin’s Sculpture Garden. There will be live music. Robin’s Sculpture Garden, is located at 1362 Abbott Kinney. This one tends to start later.

Hey, you may as well continue the evening, by jumping in the car to Silver Lake. La Luz De Jesus Gallery presents the landmark survey of Modern Era comic book art titled Pop-Sequentialism. The opening reception starts at 8:00 pm and will run till 11:00 pm.

La Luz De Jesus Gallery is located 4633 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90027
Phone 323-666-7667

Saturday, May 7th

Soooo much going on tonight….hard to pick and there is even more that I did not list. I try to give you a couple things from each neighborhood. So in case one is not working for you, there is always another.

The first annual VENICE SPRING FLING, is happening. Let’s hope they were able to get the proper permits, unlike Earth Festival, which was shut down a couple weeks ago. A free music and art festival to be held at Windward Plaza Park in Venice. Springtime is here so come out and enjoy a full day of music and art and celebrate the creative spirit of the Venice community. Live music will be performed on the Ocean Stage from 11 am-7 pm. Windward Plaza Park is at the west end of Windward Avenue, between the boardwalk and the bike trail in Venice, CA, 90291.The art show features paintings, sculpture, and photography from local and national artists www.VeniceSpringFling.com.

The Getty’s new season of Saturdays Off the 405 is here! Enjoy free outdoor music from 6:00pm-9:00 pm your soon-to-be favorite bands and DJs against the backdrop of evening views of the city. Avi Buffalo kicks off the Saturdays Off the 405 series along with DJ Kevin Bronson.

Plus, explore the galleries in Spotlight after Dark tours with a Getty Museum educator. Tours depart at 6:00 and 7:00 pm. There used to be a parking charge for the music events, but if you check the website, free parking after 5:00 pm. Amazing. However, if you want to spend the day, go early ($15.00 all day), it is definitely worth it. Grab some friends, bring a picnic (stash the wine well) NO alcohol inside, and pile in the car, $5.00 a piece and you are transported to a wonderful evening up in the hills with brilliant views. The Getty Museum is located at 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, 90049.310 440-7300; http://bit.ly/lFkpJ2.

If you have never been, Bergamot Station is a wonderful art complex which has a several openings this Saturday. Bergamot Station is located at 2525 Michigan Ave 90404. As always other galleries will be open….just make sure to fill up your wine glass and enjoy the lovely art/wine buzz.

Start off early, at Copra Gallery, (T-5) for their closing party of “'Der Wilden Mann:Thus Sprach Flotsam; Metamorphosis 3' featuring the artist, Mike Shine. An eclectic exhibit, it has received quite a bit of attention. Mike Shine’s videos will also be screened, as well as the art of Billy Norrby. Reception runs from 2:00 pm till 7:00 pm. 310 829-2156   http://www.copronason.com/.

Right next store is The Lora Schlesinger Gallery (T-3) who will be presenting "South American Paintings", a new series of works by Ann Chamberlin. The show is her second solo exhibition at Lora Schlesinger Gallery.  The opening reception is from 5pm - 7 pm and is on view through June 18, 2011. In addition, the work of Adonna Khare will also be featured at this reception.310-828-1133; www.LoraSchlesinger.com.

Then next stop should be the Richard Heller Gallery (B-5A) since it ends early at 6:00 pm. This is Hideaki Kawashima’s first U.S. solo exhibition entitled “Turning” This Tokyo based painter, Hideaki Kawashima speaks of her own images of floating ghost-like faces as a reference to herself, like self-portraits. The opening starts at 4:00 pm and will be open till 6:00 pm. 310 453-9191   http://richardhellergallery.com/.

The Samuel Freeman (B-7) is starting their opening at 5:00 pm featuring artist Margaret Nielsen in her new show, “States of Mind”. This one runs till 8:00 pm. 310.449.1479

Frank Pictures Gallery (A-5), lends its space to a guest curator, Juliet McIver who welcomes the latest abstract creations of native New Yorker, Deborah Salt. This opening reception runs from 6:00 pm till 9:00 pm. (310) 828-0211; http://www.frankpicturesgallery.com.

Since you are in Santa Monica, stop intoThe Christopher Grimes Gallery offers a group exhibition featuring Ginny Bishton, Ingrid Calame, and Scott Short. Also showing is the debut of Flashback (POV), by Marco Brambila. Reception runs from 6:00 pm till 8:00 pm. Christopher Grimes Gallery, 916 Colorado Avenue, Santa Monica, 90401 310.587.3373; http://www.cgrimes.com/.

More events to be added. Check back for the Weekend Update, Friday by noon!

Sunday May 8th,

It’s my PICK OF THE WEEK…, Come out and PARTY!

The FREE Fiesta Broadway Festival is celebrating the 22nd year and runs from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. This 12 block festival (on Broadway, fifth and Temple Streets) features L.A. favorites Ozomatli, the lauded and original Mexican Institute of Sound and traditional regional artists Diana Reyes and Carmen Jara. This Free event also includes traditional dancers, food and vendor booths. Come hungry, they always have great food and get there early. http://www.fiestabroadway.la/; To print out a map, for exact location, go to http://bit.ly/jAyl13.

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