cast from the opera

January is over, and this is the week where families can take a little breather before the Valentine’s Day/President’s Day rush. But if you’re looking for ways to get out of the house, we still found plenty of activities in the Southland this week.

(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

Monday, Jan. 31

Behind the Scenes With the Lakers

Crowell Public Library, City of San Marino

1890 Huntington Dr.
San Marino, CA 91108
(626) 300-0777
More Info

While Angelenos look forward to the SuperBowl as much as anyone else in the country, the fact that there is no NFL team here means that we’ve become more of a basketball town. Lakers fans will thrill to “Journey to the Ring: Behind the Scenes with the 2010 NBA Champion Lakers,” by the team’s official photographer, Andrew D. Bernstein.

Bernstein, a San Marino resident, will be at the Crowell Library, sharing photos and telling tales (as well as signing books). The event is free; proceeds from book sales will go to the Performing Arts Department at San Marino High School.

Time: 7:00 p.m.
Admission: Free

(credit: P. Harrington (U. MD) NASA)

Tuesday, February 1

Air and Space Permanent Exhibit

California Science Center
Exposition Park

39th Street & Figueroa Street
Los Angeles, CA 90037
(323) 724-3623
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The California Science Center is one of our city’s great educational resources, and its collection of hands-on exhibits make learning fun. The Air and Space Exhibit includes some cool aeronautic artifacts, from a full-scale flying replica of the glider the Wright Brothers flew in 1902 on to a copy of Chuck Yeager’s sound-barrier busting Bell X-1 (used in the movie, “The Right Stuff”).

Time: The California Science Center is open daily from 10:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.
Admission: Free to the permanent exhibition galleries. Parking at the Center is $8 per car ($10 for buses; $25 for oversize vehicles).


Wednesday, Feb. 2

DineLA Restaurant Week

Los Angeles and environs
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Foodie parents can delight in the second week of this event, where diners can sample dishes from their choice of hundreds of participating restaurants, all at a special price. (I suppose calling it “LA Restaurant Fortnight” didn’t have the same appeal).

This is a rare occasion when you can enjoy a three-course, prix fixe dinner at BOA or Lucques for just $44 (sans drinks and tips). The cost to dine at more casual restaurants is even lower.
While reservations are not necessary, some of the participating restaurants may require them – and they may not all be accommodating of children, so do call ahead.


Thursday, Feb. 3

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

South Coast Repertory

655 Town Center Dr.
Costa Mesa, CA 92628
(714) 708-5500
More Info

Before Disney brought us animated fairy princesses, William Shakespeare delighted audiences of all ages with this fantasy tale of love, fairies and magic. As the folks at South Coast Repertory say, this play is “the perfect introduction to Shakespeare for everyone.”

January 21 – February 20
Time: 8:00 PM
Ticket information:


Friday, Feb. 4

Equine Affair

Pomona Fairplex

1101 W. Mckinley Ave.
Pomona, CA 91769
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If you’ve got a kid who loves horses, be sure to visit the Youth Pavilion (sponsored by the Arabian Horse Association), where he or she can get the low-down on different breeds. Organizers promise lots of kids’ activities, and the whole family will enjoy Saturday night’s Craig Cameron’s Extreme Cowboy Race, a competition in which horses and riders work through an obstacle course while being timed and judged on their abilities. This should balance out some of the science and business offerings at this big expo for horse owners and aficionados.

Time: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
February 3 – 6
Admission: Daily Pass – Adult $16, Youth (7-12) $10.00,
Children 6 under Free.

(credit: Robert Millard /”

Saturday, Feb. 4

Who Wants to Be an Opera Singer?

Los Angeles Music Center

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
135 N. Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 972-8001
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It’s like a cross between “Wheel of Fortune” and “American Idol.” With the spin of an “opera wheel,” singers compete for the coveted Golden Throat Award, singing some of opera’s “greatest hits” and telling us a little about the works from which they spring.
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Admission: $15

(credit: Eagle Glen Golf Club)

Sunday, Feb. 6

NFL Legends Game Day Event

Eagle Glen Golf Club

1800 Eagle Glen Parkway
Corona, CA 92883
(951) 688-5581 ext 1005
More Info

This may be the area’s best Superbowl party. Watch the game with 14 former NFL greats: Jesse Sapolu, Dwight Hicks, Dana Hall, Craig “Mac” McEwen, Dokie Williams, Anthony Smith, Mike Lansford, Leonard Russell, Efren Herrera, Cedrick Hardman, Reggie Doss and five time Superbowl Champ Marv Fleming are all scheduled guests at this benefit for Prevent Child Abuse Riverside County.

Ticket price includes food, beverages and raffle entries.
Time: 2:00 p.m.
Admission: Adults $45; Family Pass for $100 includes two adults and two children under 16.

Donna Schwartz Mills put the Cal in SoCal Mom.