3 Things To Do on a Rainy Weekend in L.A. (L.A. Weekender)

rainy day leaf 3 Things To Do on a Rainy Weekend in L.A. (L.A. Weekender)

It’s going to be a rainy weekend in Los Angeles which means less hiking and tanning and more naps and dinner by the fireplace.

Photo courtesy of dan from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

We recommend staying in for the weekend and playing some board games or catching up on your Netflix queue but for those of you who still want to venture during the rainy weather we have a weekender’s worth of things to do on a rainy weekend in L.A. Personally, we are looking forward to clear skies as soon as possible.

Mythical Playground – Celtic Myths & Heroes: We can’t not suggest something relating to IrishFest! Visit The Broad Stage in Santa Monica and learn about the dynamic music and culture of Ireland, Scotland and Wales through Gulu Monteiro’s creation. Check it out on Saturday, March 1. Admission is $20. For more information click here.

Rainy Evening at the Movies: If you’re a fan of Hayao Miyazaki animated films, head over to the Egyptian Theatre on Saturday evening for a double feature of his most light-hearted films: My Neighbor Totoro and My Neighbors The Yamadas. My Neighbor Totoro tells the tale of two young girls and their father as they move into a new neighborhood filled with cute, mythical creatures. My Neighbors The Yamadas is a collection of cartoon shorts all centered around the antics of the lazy Yamada clan. The event begins at 7:30 p.m.

Pomona Swap Meet & Classic Car Show: The rain should be gone by Sunday morning which is perfect for the Pomona Swap Meet & Classic Car Show at Fairplex. Browse tons of hard to find car parts and accessories at low swap meet prices and ogle thousands of original and restores classic vehicles on display. General admission is $10 and children 12 and under are free. For more information visit www.fairplex.com.

What is your favorite thing to do when it’s raining? Tell us in the comment section below. 

The Fairplex L.A. Weekender is a weekly calendar of weekend events throughout Los Angeles County, from the heart of downtown to the beach cities to the IE. Additional information about all listings can be found at the event’s official website. If you have suggestions for an event, leave a comment in the box below or email us at tanji@fairplex.com

 

Introducing IrishFest 2014 + Giveaway

IrishFest giveaway 1024x477 Introducing IrishFest 2014 + Giveaway

What is IrishFest? IrishFest at Fairplex is our version of a St. Patrick’s Day party and we start the celebrations a week earlier than most. IrishFest is a blend of Irish culture and festival fun. It’s a weekend full of food, games, contests, prizes, live entertainment, crafts, kiddie carnival rides and family bonding. It’s a chance to git yer green on and have some fun with your loved ones.

In that spirit, we are giving away a prize package with all the essentials you’ll need for a good time at IrishFest at Fairplex.

IrishFest Family Four-Pack

Includes… 

  • Four admission tickets to IrishFest 
  • Four buffet meals 
  • Two 16-oz. beers 
  • Two IrishFest souvenir glasses 
  • IrishFest memorabilia 

To enter, just leave a comment in the box below with a contact email address and a comment telling us your favorite part of St. Patrick’s Day.

The winner will be announced on Tuesday, March 4th at 11 a.m. PST on our blog. Be sure to check your email to see if you won! For more information on IrishFest, visit www.irishfestatfairplex.com.

St. Patrick’s Day Party Food Ideas

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with these appetizers, entrees and desserts! You don’t have to resign yourself to corned beef and cabbage to get in the spirit of IrishFest and St. Patrick’s Day. There are dozens of St. Patrick’s Day party food ideas to try.

Last year we gave you a collection of ideas for drinks, food and decor for throwing your own St. Patrick’s Day party. We’re replenishing that list with a few recipes collected from the most creative chefs in the blogosphere.

Appetizers

Fruit Rainbow 

fruitrainbow 1024x685 St. Patricks Day Party Food Ideas San Diego Cooks

This clever idea (via San Diego Cooks) is as simple as it sounds. Slice up strawberries, mandarin oranges, pineapple, red and green grapes and blackberries to create a colorful spread of rainbow fruit. Just arrange all of your fruit on a white plate and create rainbow arcs. Cut up some banana slices and grab a handful of marshmallows to create the “clouds” of your rainbow and you have a creative and delicious treat for your guests to enjoy throughout the evening. If you’re feeling particularly festive, consider placing gold coins in two small bowls and placing them at the end of the rainbow.

Homemade Shamrock Chips & A Pot o’ Gold Dip

Southern blogger Shannon O’Neil wrote a fun post on how to make St. Patrick’s Day chips & dip using just a few simple ingredients. See how she did it below:

shamrock chips and dip St. Patricks Day Party Food Ideas Shannon O’Neil

Shannon’s Shamrock Chips 

Make your shamrock chips using spinach tortillas and a cookie cutter. Just cut shamrocks out of the tortilla using a 3″ shamrock cookie cutter, coat them in olive oil and salt and bake them in the oven at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes for an extra crispy snack. Make sure you flip the chips over at the 8 minute mark for best results.

Shannon’s Pot o’ Gold Dip 

Making the Pot o’ Gold is even easier than the shamrock chips. Pour a can of Rotel into a pot on medium heat. While the sauce is heating up. chop a block of Velveeta cheese into small squares and drop it into the pot. Stir the mixture for 5-6 minutes or until all the ingredients have blended together into a gooey, cheesy mess.

Pour the dip into a bowl and place next to your shamrock chips and you have yourself a green and gold appetizer that will please everyone.

Main Course

IrishFest Shepherd’s Pie 

shepherds pie St. Patricks Day Party Food Ideas Photo courtesy of Steven Depolo 

Coming straight from our kitchen is this delicious recipe for Shepherd’s Pie! You can taste it for yourself at IrishFest or you can try and make it yourself. Enjoy!

Ingredients 

  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 large Onion finely diced
  • 3 -4 large carrots, finely diced
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 3 -4 sprigs fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 glass Guinness Beer
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • mashed potatoes (estimating 1L or 6 cups, fresh or leftover)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • grated parmesan cheese

Directions

1. Pre-heat oven to 200C/400°F.
2. Sauté carrots in the olive oil until starting to get tender.
3. Add in the onions and sauté for a minute or two then add the meat.
4. Season with black pepper and thyme.
5. Cook until browned then drain fat.
6. Add the butter and peas.
7. Sprinkle with flour and stir through.
8. Add tomato paste, wine and Worcestershire sauce.
9. Let this reduce slightly then add the chicken stock. Allow to reduce down until you have thick meaty gravy. Season to your taste.
10. Remove from heat. Grease an oven proof dish (9×13 works for me, as does an oval baker) with butter and add the sauce.
11. Spoon or pipe the mashed potatoes over top. Brush with egg and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if using.
12. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the potato is nice and browned on top.

Pot of Gold Irish Potato Soup 

Mary from Home Is Where The Boat Is shared a clever way to incorporate St. Patrick’s Day into a potato soup bread bowl:

breadbowl St. Patricks Day Party Food Ideas Mary used a recipe from an old Southern Living magazine (see original ingredients and cooking instructions here) and swapped some of the traditional potato soup ingredients for Yukon Gold Potatoes, Kerrygold Irish Butter and a scoop of Kerrygold cheddar cheese. The result is a tantalizing, hearty Irish Potato Soup! To add that St. Patrick’s Day flair, simply use a shamrock cookie cutter and cut out a shamrock shape on the lid of the bread bowl.

Desserts


Mint Chocolate Push Pops 

Liz from Hoosier’s Homemade published a fun, quick-to-make dessert that will have your guests seeing green stars as they sink into sugary heaven. Purchase push pop containers at your local craft store, then follow Liz’s instructions below to get baking!

Irish Cream Push Pops.close 1 St. Patricks Day Party Food Ideas Hoosier’s Homemade Irish Cream Push Pop Recipe

Liz created a recipe that can be used for push pops or for a classic trifle dish. To see the full recipe and list of ingredients, click here.

These St. Patrick’s Day party food ideas are sure to delight all of your guests, whether they have a penchant for the savory or sweet. IrishFest will feature a wide array of delicious foods including baked potato salad with Irish cheddar, Irish soda bread and chocolate Irish cream cake. We can’t wait to tuck in and enjoy platefuls of each and every dish! To view the full menu visit www.irishfestatfairplex.com.

Do you have any fun St. Patrick’s Day party foods you like to make? Tell us in the comments below! 

Fairplex Snapshot: IrishFest TimeLapse Cameras

Presentation1 225x300 Fairplex Snapshot: IrishFest TimeLapse Cameras

Fairplex is a dynamic campus that is always molding to fit the needs of different events. This week we are preparing for IrishFest and thought we would capture the process using our new timelapse cameras.

We are transforming Fairplex into a land of green and gold this week. It’s amazing to think that one day you could be sitting in the middle of an empty building and return the next day to find stages, tables, lights, beer and food filling the whole room.

 

It might seem like there are little fairies who create these fantastic events overnight, but it’s really the talents of our facilities and creative teams who do the real magic. 

tlc6 300x260 Fairplex Snapshot: IrishFest TimeLapse Cameras Setting up one of our TLC200s 

We thought we would try to catch some of their whirlwind activity on tape so we set up a couple TimeLapse cameras to watch some of the action. We set them up today and will share what we see once IrishFest starts.

It’s going to be a fun couple of weeks! Can’t wait to see what our cameras capture.

L.A. Weekender: 4 Things To Do In Los Angeles This Weekend

ID 10099344 L.A. Weekender: 4 Things To Do In Los Angeles This Weekend Photo courtesy of pat138241 freedigitalphotos.net  

TGIF! We are ready to enjoy a couple afternoons in the California sun. Here are some fun things to do in L.A. this weekend:

Icona Pop: If you’re feeling particularly spontaneous, drive down to Universal City Walk for a free performance by Icona Pop (best known for their hit “I Love It”) today at 1 p.m. at the 5 Towers stage. Other acts include EDM DJ Mystery Skulls, pop band My Crazy Girlfriend and Disney Channel star Blake Michael. Why not take a half-day and start the weekend early?

Santa Monica Pier Aquarium: The Santa Monica Pier Aquarium is offering free admission on Fridays throughout February. The aquarium recently opened the remodeled Dorothy Green Room which features interactive displays and two new live animal exhibits. There is no better place to learn about conservation than a visit to an aquarium followed by a walk along the ocean. Today’s hours are 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Pomona Art Walk: Be a part of the growing Pomona art community at the Pomona Art Walk. Hundreds of local artists display their works along the streets and in more than two dozen galleries in the city. Elements include paintings, photography, ceramics and jewelry. Many shops, studios and restaurants are open late as part of the festivities. Visit the Art Walk on Saturday from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Quinceañera Expo: The Quinceañera Expo is coming to Fairplex this Sunday for a full day of ball gowns, makeup, tiaras and party planning. More than 100 trade professionals will be here presenting the latest trends for gowns, tuxedos, beauty products, hair, decorations, photography, dance, music, limousines, cakes and other Quince essentials. Admission is only $7; kids 12 and under are free. For more information visit www.fairplex.com.

The Fairplex L.A. Weekender is a weekly calendar of weekend events throughout Los Angeles County, from the heart of downtown to the beach cities to the IE. Additional information about all listings can be found at the event’s official website. If you have suggestions for an event, leave a comment in the box below or email us at tanji@fairplex.com

3 St. Patrick’s Day Craft Ideas for Kids

St. Patrick’s Day is always a fun excuse to be crafty and spend some creative quality time with your kids. Here are 3 St. Patrick’s Day craft ideas collected from Pinterest:

1. Blarney Stones 

blarney stone craft 3 St. Patricks Day Craft Ideas for Kids Visit SheKnows.com for this and other craft ideas

Kori Ellis from SheKnows wrote a fun post on making your own Blarney Stone. Irish legend says that if you kiss the Blarney Stone of Blarney Castle in Ireland you will receive the gift of eloquence. Transform a smooth river rock into a Blarney Stone with the kids.

Materials:

  • smooth, clean rock
  • paint brush
  • green paint
  • glue
  • googly eyes
  • markers
  • yarn
  • sequins, glitter (optional)
Instructions: 
  1. Wash and dry the rock, and then paint the entire rock with green paint.
  2. After the paint is completely dry, use glue to attach googly eyes and draw a face with markers.
  3. Add yarn to make hair and other embellishments to decorate the Blarney Stone.
  4. Tell your child the story of the Blarney Stone while they are creating their craft project.

You can make your own blarney stone at IrishFest in the kids section!

2. Make Your Own Rainbow 

Amy from One Artsy Mama shared a post on how to make your own rainbow. All you need is a piece of paper, glue, Fruit Loops and cotton balls. Now that’s a good way to put all that sugar to use!

st patricks day craft ideas for kids 3 St. Patricks Day Craft Ideas for Kids Find other fun craft ideas at One Artsy Mama 

3. Stained Glass Shamrock

Tammy from Housing a Forest wrote an easy-to-follow blog post on making your own stained glass shamrock sun catchers.

Stained Glass Shamrocks 4 3 St. Patricks Day Craft Ideas for Kids Stained Glass Shamrocks by Housing A Forest 

Materials: 

  • Cardboard template of a shamrock (just use a piece of an old cereal box and trace the outline of a shamrock before cutting. Click here for an example.)
  • Basic paint brushes
  • Black tempera paint
  • Large Coffee Filter
  • Green and Yellow Liquid Water Colors
  • Pipette (infant medication droppers work great too)
  • Glue stick

Instructions: 

1. Paint the template black. (Make sure the kids are painting on a protective surface!) Set       the template aside to dry.
2. Place your coffee filter onto a shallow tray to help contain the mess (a Styrofoam meat       tray works great).  Use the Medicine dropper or pipette to squeeze up the liquid                   watercolor and then squirt it onto the coffee filter.
3. Once everything is dry, glue the colorful filter onto the backside of the cardboard using        your glue stick.
4.  Hang up your new shamrock sun catchers and enjoy their beauty!

For step-by-step instructions and photos read the original post by Housing A Forest.

IrishFest has us breathing shamrocks and pots of (faux) gold at Fairplex and we cannot wait to open our doors to you. If you plan on bringing the kids to IrishFest make sure to stop by the games and crafts sections for a full day of Irish fun!

For more information on IrishFest, visit www.irishfestatfairplex.com.

 

L.A. Weekender: Valentine’s Day for Singles and Couples in L.A.

Valentine’s Day. Single Awareness Day. It’s an overload of red, pink, chocolate and flowers for everyone. Whether you’re happily in love or contentedly single, we have a full list of fun ideas for singles and couples in this L.A. Weekender. Happy Valentine’s Day!

ID 10019720 L.A. Weekender: Valentines Day for Singles and Couples in L.A.

 

Photo courtesy of  renjith krishnan from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you’re taken… 

Classic Romance: If you’re looking for dinner & a movie but Endless Love and Winter’s Tale sound nauseatingly unoriginal and cheesy, opt for the classics: Breakfast at Tiffany’s at the Aero and Casablanca at the Egyptian Theatre. The first few dozen attendees at both theatres receive Godiva chocolate. Here’s looking at you kid.

The Queen of Hearts Ball: Downtown LA can be pretty quiet on the weekends but that’s all the more reason to do the Edison’s Queen of Hearts Ball as your  Valentine’s venue of choice. The venue that takes you back to the days of fedoras and flappers is providing a classic romantic date including live music, champagne and culinary dishes inspired by Valentine’s Day. Dinner for two costs $115 and includes dinner and champagne.

Farm-to-table: McKinley’s Grille is offering a prix-fixe Valentine’s Day menu featuring fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs from the Farm at Fairplex. Dine in a cozy enclave for two and feast on farm-to-table dishes including pan-seared diver scallops, Jidori chicken, Niman Ranch beef strip loin and finish with a delicious dessert of chocolate mousse, glazed strawberries, salted caramel lava cake or Dr. Bob’s sorbet. Is your mouth watering yet? A full menu is available here.

If you’re single… 

I Heart Santa Monica: So there’s a Valentine’s Day party going down at Santa Monica Wokcano tonight and it’s going to be pretty fun. There will be free hors d’oeuvres for the first hour, themed cocktails and complimentary “man”icures all night long. If you enjoy sushi, dancing, photobooths and free stuff, you might want to think about heading over. The party goes from 9 p.m. – 2 a.m.

Speed-Dating: All the single people, all the single people… now put your hands up! Ditch your couples friends at McKinley’s Grille and head over to the other side of Fairplex for Finish Line Sports Grill’s speed dating tonight, 7 – 8 p.m. Happy hour drink specials will run through the duration of the event so grab a couple drinks and relax while meeting new people. For more information click here. Good luck!

Imagine Dragons: Who cares if you’re in a relationship? A good concert is a good concert and Imagine Dragons more than delivers. They are performing tonight at The Forum in Inglewood and there might be a few tickets left for grabs if you’re still looking for something to do. High energy, great vocals/instrumentals and chart-topping songs will make it a night to remember.

The Fairplex L.A. Weekender highlights events throughout Los Angeles County, from the heart of downtown to the beach cities to the IE. Additional information about all listings can be found at the event’s official website. If you have suggestions for an event, leave a comment in the box below or email us at tanji@fairplex.com

Thoughtful Thursday: ArtReach Volunteers

ArtReach: The Art of Pop Culture is coming to the Millard Sheets Arts Center at Fairplex next month. ArtReach features the artistic talents of regional high school students and brings the community together to celebrate the accomplishments of each individual artist.

Claremont students share their ArtReach submissions

Sculptures, paintings, film, photography and myriad other art forms are displayed throughout the gallery, all commenting on the various aspects of pop culture.

As a part of The Learning Centers at Fairplex, ArtReach relies heavily on volunteers to make the show a success. For this week’s Thoughtful Thursday we wanted to give a huge shout-out to all of the people in our community who have taken time out of their busy lives to help with this endeavor.

Our volunteers do everything from installing art pieces to greeting visitors and leading discussions about artworks during student field trips. They are an essential part of this project and we couldn’t do it without them!

If you are interested in volunteering with ArtReach: The Art of Pop Culture, please call us at (909) 865-4075. We would love to have you join the Fairplex family!

Fairplex Snapshot: The Farm at Fairplex expansion

Do you ever wish you could have fresh produce plucked straight from your backyard? When you eat with us, that is exactly the experience you get. The Farm at Fairplex is one of the largest urban farms in Los Angeles and is host to dozens of fruits, vegetables and herbs year-round.

Today’s snapshot is a glimpse of our farm during the winter months:

Our winter crops are flourishing at the Farm at Fairplex. Lettuce, grapefruit mint, Valencia oranges, fennel, lemons, beets, carrots, spinach and strawberries are just a few of the crops currently thriving here. McKinley’s Grille incorporates our freshest produce into their seasonal menus.

It is always peaceful to take a stroll through the Farm at Fairplex, and we are about to expand the number of crops! The Fairplex farm expansion is expected to start this month, making room for more than 100 specialty crops. We can’t wait to see what it will look like!

Event Industry News: Fairplex Weekend Recap

horse expo 1 225x300 Event Industry News: Fairplex Weekend Recap Fairplex weekend recap: Fairplex was buzzing with activity this weekend. The annual Horse Expo filled the FairView Farms stables and paddocks with dozens of horses, and vendors, artists and authors settled into our expo halls.

Thousands of horse enthusiasts flocked to the campus to hear from industry experts, watch breeding demonstrations and shop for saddles, buckles, riding attire and countless other goods.

On the other side of campus the NHRA Winternationals took over our speedway kicking off the 2014 drag racing season.

Sochi Olympics: The 2014 Winter Olympics have been interesting, to say the least. Regardless of various hotel floops and the now-infamous Olympic Ring mishap, the Opening Ceremony was a beautiful tribute to the cultural history of Russia, ending with a glorious 30-minute fireworks show. Not a bad way to start one of the largest events in the world. As of this morning, Team USA has taken a total of five medals–two gold and three bronze.

Facebook Paper

Social media: Facebook had a busy week, creating “Look Back” videos for each of its’ billion users to celebrate its 10th anniversary and launching the new Paper app. The Paper app allows users to organize their news feed based on categories, much like an online newspaper. Options include health, entertainment, crafts, sports, friends, home & garden and numerous other niche categories. Each category is composed of daily top news stories for that category with links to the original story in each post. Visually pleasing, well-organized and easy to use, Paper may be the saving grace of a falling empire.

flappybird 300x241 Event Industry News: Fairplex Weekend Recap

Technology: Flappy Bird, the wildly popular smartphone/tablet game, ended almost as soon as it began. Despite more than 50 million downloads, game creator Dong Nguyen decided to remove the game from the App Store and Google Play Store today.

“I can’t take it anymore,” Nguyen tweeted on Sunday. Looks like we’ll have to wait awhile for the next latest-and-greatest time waster. Goodbye, Flappy Bird. You were maddeningly addicting while you lasted. Photo taken from Mashable

Our bi-weekly Event Industry News post includes event trends, social media and technology industry updates and events news from Los Angeles County.