It’s playtime at the uke festival and at other weekend events in the L.A. area

Learn how to play the ukulele and watch performances by professionals Sept. 28 at the Los Angeles International Ukulele Festival in Torrance.
(Craig Chee)

Nurture passions for gelato, arcade games, history and the ukulele at weekend close-to-home events.


The Los Angeles International Ukulele Festival at the Torrance Cultural Arts Center has fun for experienced uke players and beginners alike. Take musical workshops, watch performances by ukulele greats and search the marketplace for Hawaiian snacks and goods. Bring your own instrument or buy one at the festival. (Some beginner classes will have ukuleles to lend.)

When: 9:30 a.m. Sept. 28

Cost, info: $45, $20 for students with ID, and free for children 12 and under. Family friendly. No dogs. (800) 595-4849,

Los Alamos

Travel back to the Old West at Los Alamos Valley Old Days, which takes place at Los Alamos Valley Men’s Club. The weekend includes a peddler’s market, a family fun zone with a mechanical bull, the “Greatest Little Small Town Parade” and a game called “chicken-poop bingo.”

When: 9 a.m. Sept. 28 and 29


Cost, info: Free. Family friendly. Dogs OK outdoors. (877) 327-2656,

Los Angeles

Ten competing chefs whip up Mexican chocolate gelato with sweet mole, cardamom-infused white peach sorbetto and other cool treats at the Gelato Festival West Hollywood at the Pacific Design Center. Taste as many samples as you like and vote for your favorite; the winner will compete in the Gelato Festival World Masters in 2021. You can also take gelato-making classes and compete in a scoop-stacking competition.

When: 11 a.m. Sept. 28 and 29

Cost, info: $25, with reduced costs for seniors and children. Family friendly. Dogs OK.

Los Angeles

Play “Pac-Man,” “Street Fighter” and 50 other arcade games from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s at the Retrocade Experience at Union Station. Nachos, popcorn, vintage candies and specialty cocktails plus a DJ spinning retro tunes will ease you into the proper gaming mindset.


When: 11 a.m. Sept. 28 and 29
Cost, info: $5 for a two-hour gaming session. Family friendly. No dogs.


Ventura Harbor Village’s summer Seaside Live Music series comes to an end with Latin-influenced rock by the Castillo Trio on Saturday and feel-good island tunes by the CocoKnots on Sunday. Watch the bands on the Seaside Promenade Stage, then grab dinner or rent kayaks on the harbor.

When: 1 p.m. Sept. 28 and 29

Cost, info: Free. Family friendly. Dogs OK. (805) 477-0470,


Find art, jewelry, specialty foods and other goods from 350 vendors at the 35th Abbot Kinney Festival along Abbot Kinney Boulevard. Other entertainment includes food trucks, beer gardens, four stages of live music, and the KidsQuad with obstacle courses, slides and treasure hunts.

When: 10 a.m. Sept. 29

Cost, info: Free. Family friendly. Dogs OK. (310) 904-9736

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