The kids might be back in school, but that doesn’t mean the family fun has to stop. Make some time to enjoy life and make family memories.
Sept. 7-Nov. 2 weekends
Big Bear Oktoberfest
Big Bear Convention Center, 42900 Big Bear Blvd., Big Bear Lake
The 49th Annual Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest will be held for nine weekends and offer family-friendly fun with log sawing contests, German entertainment, authentic brats and knockwursts, game booths, vendors and exhibitors. Children’s contests are held Sundays at 3 p.m.
There will be a variety of 20+ vendors offering arts and crafts, collectibles and “must-have” trinkets. Sundays are family days with half-price adult tickets and children under 12 free. Children’s contests are held Sundays at 3 p.m.
Tall Ships Festival
Pacific Coast Highway and Selva Road and
Dana Hills High School, 33333 Golden Lantern, Dana Point, 92629
The 35th annual Ocean Institute Tall Ships and Ocean Festival will feature tours of the brig Pilgrim, Spirit of Dana Point and all visiting vessels from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
There will be educational activities, including squid dissections, gold panning, candle making and more. The festival pass includes access to the Sierra Nevada Beer Garden, main stage and Pirate Camp. There also will be food trucks and vendors. View cannon battles and have breakfast with a mermaid.
Special additional events include a mermaid swim encounter and Cap’n Jack’s Pirate School.
There is no parking at the Ocean Institute. However, free shuttles are available from Strand Vista Park.
Back-to-School Chalk Art Festival
100 Fisherman’s Wharf Redondo Beach 90277
The 13th annual Back-to-School Chalk Art Festival on the Pier will attract dozens of artists who will have free rein to turn the Redondo Beach Pier into a temporary canvas for their spectacular chalk art. Free. Noon-4 p.m.
Route 66 Cruisin’ Reunion
Euclid Avenue and surrounding streets in downtown Ontario
Route 66 Cruisin’ Reunion is a Southern California ultimate weekend celebration of America’s love affair with the automobile and its world-famous highway, Route 66. Two days of cruisin’, contests, live entertainment, food along historic, tree-shaded Euclid Avenue in Ontario.
More than 2,000 classic cruisers, convertibles, hot rods and wicked Woodies fuel this free jam-packed family-friendly jamboree near Ontario Town Square. Come as a family and bring your classic car, if you have one.
Fourth Annual Dino Fest
Natural History Museum, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, 90007
Who doesn’t love dinosaurs? This two-day festival celebrating dinosaurs, their prehistoric past and the science that brings their world back to life will be held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History.
Meet world-renowned paleontologists from the museum’s Dinosaur Institute and beyond as they discuss historic and ongoing fossil discoveries from around the world. Visit exhibitors, catch a glimpse of rare specimens from the museum’s collections, dig into hands-on activities, explore Dino Hall with the world’s only Tyrannosaurus rex growth series.
Moompetam: Native American Festival
Aquarium of the Pacific, 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach,
Traditional cultural crafts, storytelling, educational programs, live demonstrations, music and dance celebrate the indigenous Native American California maritime cultures, including Tongva, Chumash, Luiseno and Kumeyaay. Free with Aquarium admission ($30 adults, $18 ages 3-11).
L.A. County Fair
Now thru Sept. 22
Fairplex, 1101 W McKinley Ave., Pomona, 91768
Open Wednesdays-Sundays, the L.A. County Fair is the annual extravaganza of deep-fried treats, barnyard pig races, animals, carnival rides, games, Marvel character meet and greets, entertainment, art exhibits and dozens of attractions. See George Lopez, Pitbull, War, Chicago, The O’Jays, The Charlie Tucker Band and more on stage.
Hungry? Try deep-fried hot sauce, deep-fried butter, chicken and waffle on a stick, French toast bacon bombs, truffle-gouda bacon fries, bacon-wrapped baked potato, burgers, portobello kabobs, vegan burritos, tacos and nachos, deep-fried pizza, churro shakes, ice cream, shaved ice and a Cowboy Crunch Sundae, among other belly busters. Special $6.50 food items throughout the fair available.
This year, there will be increased shade covers throughout the fair.
The Shire of Idyllwild’s Renaissance Faire
Camp Emerson, 53115 Idyllbrook Drive, Idyllwild, 92549
Local and professional entertainers transform the mountain community of Idyllwild into the family-friendly Idyllwild Shire with strolling and stage performances, handcrafts, food and spirits… all recalling an English Autumn Faire in the days of William Shakespeare.
California Lemon Festival
7050 Phelps Road, Goleta, 93117
The 28th Annual California Lemon Festival in Goleta is a family-friendly event with “old time” fun including pie eating contests, food, arts and crafts vendors and a huge kids zone.
Among the activities in the Kids Zone are bubble fun, swings, Euro bungee, several bounce houses, a sport obstacle course, an inflatable obstacle course, toddler jump, slot cars, a train, miniature golf, a double slide, an interactive castle and archery tag.
The weekend includes the Goleta Fall Classic Car and Street Rod Show.