Archive for July, 2014

The 5th Annual Los Angeles Renegade Craft Fair returned for its semi-annual Summer Market this past weekend at its new home of Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles. This free and all-ages event sees thousands of visitors all coming to see over 250 select independent artists, crafters, and vendors all exhibiting and selling their wares. Among all the possible merchandise, visitors could purchase anything from clothing, accessories, home goods (candles, soap, wind chimes, etc), kitchen supplies, artisanal eats (candy, preserves, etc), music records, pet supplies, and so much more. What makes Renegade Craft appealing revolves around every single vendor, all independently crafting their own handmade goods as opposed to manufacturing them in a factory. In addition to the multitude of aisles filled with vendors, Renegade Craft also offers various hands-on workshops, art installations, live DJ’s, a photo booth, gourmet food trucks, and more.

With the change in location came a change in the lineup of vendors. This past weekend’s event appeared to have the most amount of new vendors compared to the past couple of years. Of particular note, I did not find MNKR or Bad Pickle Tees. Some familiar faces showed up, such as Maya Brigadeiro, Commuter Collection, and Bunny Butt Apothecary. This does not denote a bad thing, since variety makes an event more lively and interesting year after year instead of bringing on the same vendors each time. Renegade Craft exists to introduce the locals to new vendors that they would have never heard of, and this past weekend’s event certainly did that for me.

If you attended Renegade LA this past weekend, I would love to know what you purchased. Please share your items by commenting on this post, or by posting on my Facebook page. Keep in mind that Renegade runs twice a year in Los Angeles – the holiday show will occur on the weekend of December 13-14 later this year. As a free event open to the public that lasts two days, Renegade Craft Fair can easily fit into anyone’s schedule. Shop local, and support local business – doing so drives the local economy and greatly benefits your local community.

The 24th Annual Taste of Yorba Linda took place last Friday evening at the Yorba Linda Community Center. This functioned just like any other food tasting event – for a flat price, guests could enter and taste as much food as they can for the allotted time. Restaurants from all over Yorba Linda, plus a few from around Orange County, arrived at this tasting gala to serve their delicious eats to any visitor that would visit their booth. Admission cost $45 presale or $55 at the door, and included unlimited food tastings plus two drink tickets good for beer or wine. Guests started their tour of the event inside the community center, which featured a large hall of multiple tables to receive food from or to explore services, and other rooms that housed silent auctions.

Too many people crowded up the inside tasting area, while the outside remained fairly spacious. Plenty more vendors existed outside, with most of the alcohol pouring out here. Besides all the food and drinks, guests would find the stage for the live music, and cars on display in case anybody wanted to buy a new car.

What would a tasting event do without the food? As stated above, most of the food vendors present resides in Yorba Linda, while a select few commuted from elsewhere. From private caterers to public restaurants, all sorts of businesses brought different types of food to the table. For the most part, the food samples remained traditional in the culinary sense. For example, more than enough vendors made pulled pork sliders, at least three vendors brought pizza, and too many vendors made tacos. After tasting all the food outside, it perplexes me that the food that stood out the most came from private vendors, or non-restaurant vendors, such as senior citizen centers. Capriana made lamb sliders and mandarin orange tiramisu, Sunrise made chorizo-stuffed bacon-wrapped dates, and Emeritus made BBQ spare ribs. No one else’s quality could come close to the food brought forth by these senior citizen communities. Man, old people get the best food!

Most people tend to not regard Yorba Linda as a city for nightlife or for visiting destinations. Yorba Linda represents a homely, peaceful community with little volatility. As a result, one should not expect to see glamorous foods or find exotic tastes around the corner. The citizens here prefer what they have familiarity with – foods that they grew up with. This explains the lack of truly creative foods at this tasting, and why guests would find foods like tacos, pizza, and pulled pork everywhere. This may also explain the drinking trend – most of the guests opted to go for wine, since wine styles bear universality no matter what. Most of the guests did not understand craft beer, so the microbreweries did not see as much action as the few booths serving mass-produced beer. Thankfully, unlike some tasting events in other cities, this event minimized the corporate businesses and focused more on the local businesses. Other than Rubio’s and Albertson’s, all the other vendors could call Orange County their home. I would recommend returning to this next year for the 25th Annual Taste of Yorba Linda, especially if you do not reside near Yorba Linda. This would give you a chance to explore a city that otherwise would go unnoticed.

Not one to shy away from anything food-related (and free), I decided to visit the 1st Annual Vegan Faire at Center Street Promenade in Downtown Anaheim this past Saturday afternoon. Hosted by The Healthy Junk, this free and all-ages outdoor event brought the vegan community together for a day of vegan eats, vegan drinks, music, activities, and more. Visitors could snag samples of various things, especially drinks. Visitors could also view demos of crossfit, karate, and zumba. Other than that, this fair mainly set out to spread the vegan propaganda, what with the signs attempting to dispel myths about veganism. Non-vegan visitors would likely not find much to do here, other than try all the samples around. At 5pm, the event organizers got over a hundred people in one long line down Center Street in an attempt to form the world’s longest yoga line for the warrior pose. However, the pose lasted no more than five seconds, and by the time anyone could lock in the pose, the actual posing had ended. While a Vegan Faire has all the right tools to end up a successful hit, it falls short with lack of content.

US Open of Surfing
July 25 – August 3
Huntington Beach, south of the pier

This week-long competition takes place on the shore south of Huntington Beach Pier. Come see professional and amateur surfers compete to take a spot for the ASP World Tour. Visitors will also find skateboarding demos and live music all week. Completely free to attend, this weekend will see thousands of spectators on the beach for the US Open. Expect heavy traffic all week. Try to find parking in the neighborhoods, but prepare to walk a long distance if choosing to park in neighborhoods, since the neighborhoods closer to the beach will remain full all week.

Mocha Machine Release
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, July 29
Beachwood Brewing, Long Beach

Dark-beer fans rejoice – Beachwood Brewing will release Mocha Machine this Tuesday. Enjoy this coffee porter on draft at Beachwood Brewing, or buy bottles to take elsewhere to enjoy.

8Kalacas @ House of Blues Sunset – Free Show
7:30 pm – 12:30 am, July 29
House of Blues, West Hollywood

Catch a FREE ska show this Tuesday night in West Hollywood. Click the link above for more information on how to obtain free tickets. No one under 18 may attend the show.

2014 International Surf Festival
9:00 am – 12:00 pm, July 30
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm, July 31
7:00 pm – 10:00 pm, August 1
6:45 am – 10:00 pm, August 2
7:30 am – 3:00 pm, August 3
Various beaches, Hermosa/Manhattan/Redondo Beach

Celebrate beach life with the 2014 International Surf Festival that spans five days starting Wednesday morning. The festival comes chock-full of events and activities – see the website for a complete schedule. Actual surfing competitions start Saturday morning, while visitors can catch other activities on all the other times, such as beach volleyball, lifeguard demos, beach runs, and more.

Ska Revival Tour
7:00 pm – 1:00 am, July 30
Dipiazzas, Long Beach

This collective group of ska bands from across the country will stop by Long Beach on their tour this Wednesday night. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $10.

GOGO13 @ Irvine Regional Park
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, July 31
Irvine Regional Park, Orange

Various parks around Orange County will host FREE and all-ages concerts this summer. This Thursday night, see local ska band GOGO13 perform an unforgettable set. Food trucks will arrive to keep guests fed too.

61st Annual Kids Fishing Rodeo
8:00 am – 12:00 pm, August 1
Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier, Long Beach

This FREE kids’ fishing contest will provide a safe environment for kids to learn how to fish, about fishing equipment, and about the environment. All participants must supply their own rod and reel – the event will provide bait and tackle.

First Fridays
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, August 1
Various locations
Long Beach:

This monthly artwalk occurs on the first Friday of every month. Each location offers different activities, but most will contain food & drink specials, art exhibits & displays, street performers, and more. Venice and Long Beach have the two largest gatherings of all First Fridays. Other locations include Westchester, Fullerton, and City of Industry. Most First Fridays locations cost nothing to attend, while the local businesses uphold their standard rules (e.g. bars 21+ only).

The Rusty Monk: 1st Anniversary Art Show
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, August 1
The Rusty Monk, Uptown Whittier

Celebrate The Rusty Monk’s 1st anniversary this Friday night with an art show, special dinner menu, special beer tappings, glass giveaways, and more.

66th Annual La Habra Corn Festival
5:30 pm – 11:00 pm, August 1
11:00 am – 11:00 pm, August 2
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm, August 3
El Centro Park, La Habra

This city fair celebrates corn with food, rides, games, drinks, vendors, merchandise, raffles, entertainment, and more. This fair will have a parade on Saturday afternoon too. Free to attend for all ages, visitors can also participate in a corn-eating contest, cutest baby contest, dog costume contest, apple pie contest, and more.

Whitekaps @ Little Louie’s Hemet
7:00 pm – 11:00 pm, August 1
Little Louie’s, Hemet

Local punk bands will play a show this Friday night in Hemet. The cover for this all-ages show costs $10.

Wet Hot Skamerican Summer
7:00 pm – 1:00 am, August 1
House of Blues, Anaheim

A bunch of great local ska bands will play an all-ages show this Friday night at the House of Blues in Downtown Disney in Anaheim. You can obtain free tickets by directly contacting any of the bands via their Facebook page. Guests can park for free for up to five hours with the wristband from this show, so plan your arrival accordingly.

Punk Night @ The World Famous Doll Hut
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, August 1
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim

Enjoy some local punk/ska music this Friday night at the Doll Hut in Anaheim. The cover for this show costs $5. No one under 21 may attend.

The Secret Affair – 60’s Night
9:00 pm – 1:00 am, August 1
Alex’s Bar, Long Beach

Occurring on every month’s first Friday, this 60’s night at Alex’s Bar will play all vinyl music of motown, northern soul, boogaloo, 60’s pop, and more. Feel free to dress up too, as the bar staff will hold costume contests and dance contests. No one under 21 may enter.

The Dirty Little Secrets @ Whisky A Go Go
11:00 pm – 12:00 am, August 1
Whisky A Go Go, West Hollywood

The sexy vixens from the Dirty Little Secrets return this Friday night for a raunchy show at the Whisky. This bar requires a variable cover charge. When entering, mention that you want to see the Dirty Little Secrets.

25th Annual Clairemont Family Day
8:00 am – 5:00 pm, August 2
South Clairemont Park, San Diego

Bring the entire family over to the park this Saturday for a FREE fair at the park. This fair will feature a pancake breakfast, arts & crafts, live entertainment, food, drinks, games, rides, a car show, and more. Visitors can swim for FREE in the park’s pool from 12pm until 3pm.

2014 Lucas Oil Long Beach Sprint Nationals
8:00 am – 5:00 pm, August 2-3
Marine Stadium, Long Beach

Powerboat racers from across the country will congregate in Long Beach this weekend for this annual competition. Admission costs $15 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under.

21st Annual Long Beach Crawfish Festival
12:00 pm – 11:00 pm, August 2
12:00 pm – 10:00 pm, August 3
Rainbow Lagoon Park, Long Beach

Indulge in crawfish, beignets, drinks, and other New Orleans eats this weekend in Long Beach. In addition to all the food, attendees will find a TV lounge, dance contests, live music, souvenir photos, and more. Entry to this all-ages festival cost $13 presale and $15 at the gate for adults, while kids 12 and under get in free with a paid adult admission. Adding a two-pound crawfish feast will cost $28 presale and $38 at the gate. Adding a three-pound crawfish feast will cost $35 presale and $48 at the gate. The parking lots across the street charge for use – park for free in the neighborhood east of Alamitos Avenue.

HARD Summer Music Festival
12:00 pm – 12:00 am, August 2-3
Whittier Narrows Recreation Area, South El Monte

Electronic Dance Music (EDM) has always remained a popular genre in our recent history. Since the early 1990’s, people have jammed and danced to EDM through various forms, such as rave, techno, trance, dubstep, and more. Due to this genre’s lack of lyrics, EDM sounds the same to everyone around the world. This international appeal reaches every corner in the world, especially at Electric Daisy Carnival. This weekend, Los Angeles will see its own EDM concert with Hard Summer, a two-day outdoor concert taking place at the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area in South El Monte. Tickets start at $85 for one-day general admission, and go up as high as $270 for a two-day VIP pass. No one under 18 may attend.

Bicycle Drive-In
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, August 2
7th & Pine, Long Beach

Ride your bikes to this FREE all-ages event and enjoy an evening of film and music. Visitors may bring blankets, chairs, and picnics to set up to enjoy the movies and/or music.

Yeastie Boys @ The World Famous Doll Hut
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, August 2
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim

Get crazy this Saturday night at this local punk show at the Doll Hut. The cover for this show costs $5. No one under 21 may enter.

OC Fair Fun Run 5K
8:00 am – 12:00 pm, August 3
OC Fair & Event Center, Costa Mesa

The OC Fair hosts a 5K at the fairgrounds this Sunday morning. Registration costs $40 presale and $45 on the day of the race, if any spots remain. Children ages 6-12 register for $25 presale and $30 on the day of the race, if any spots remain. Online registration closes this Thursday. All participants receive a goodie bag, which includes a T-shirt, a medal for participating, and one admission into the OC Fair.

Lakewood Family Sunday Funday Ride
9:30 am – 1:00 pm, August 3
Del Valle Park, Lakewood

Bring out your family for a bike ride around Lakewood and Long Beach. The course runs up to 18 miles, but participants may choose to ride for a lesser duration.

18th Annual Chula Vista Lemon Festival
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, August 3
Third Avenue Village, Chula Vista

This street fair in Chula Vista will have food, arts & crafts, live music, dance, entertainment, and lemons everywhere. Completely free to attend for all ages, visitors should park in the neighborhoods south of 3rd Avenue.

2nd Annual North Pacific Beach Sip ‘N Stroll
11:30 am – 4:30 pm, August 3
Cass St, Pacific Beach, San Diego

Discover all the local shops and restaurants in North Pacific beach at this free street fair this Sunday afternoon. Cass St will close to traffic to allow visitors to roam the street and check out all of the booths, vendors, food, drinks, merchandise, games, rides, and more.

Every year, various parks around Orange County host FREE and all-ages concerts in the summer. Two years ago, they set the bar high with a free Aquabats show. Last night, OC Parks returned again with a free show featuring Orange County natives Suburban Legends. Looking at the list of bands playing in this series, Suburban Legends may have the greatest following, so this year’s concert series may live up to 2012’s Aquabats show. At all of this summer’s concerts at Orange County Parks, expect the show to last about two hours, and expect a few food trucks and maybe a vendor or two. Since these shows tend to take place on a weekday, they will remain light on content, focusing on the headlining band and the bountiful parks in Orange County.

Opening the evening, Papafish from Los Angeles shifted away from their meta to play a two-person acoustic set. This band that normally rolls with five members plays ska rock music. Without any explanation, these two members of the band played a half-hour acoustic set instead. The crowd still enjoyed it, as the kids all danced away during the songs. If you would like to see Papafish in their full glory, they will perform at House of Blues Anaheim next Friday night with tons of other local ska bands. You can get tickets to this show for free – simply contact any of the performing bands directly via their Facebook page, and request tickets.

Once Suburban Legends got onto the stage, all the ska kids got up from their seats and crowded the front area. With an energizing and triumphant set, Suburban Legends got everyone up on their feet dancing and grooving to the music. In addition to the fun peppy music, the band members do not simply stand there and play their music – they entertain by dancing, acting, and moving around to put on a true show. By adding these elements to the show, they add value to the performance, leaving the audience wanting more. Suburban Legends definitely delivered more, especially when they played ska covers of the Duck Tales Theme Song and I Just Can’t Wait To Be King. Their set lasted a good hour, a solid hour of nonstop energy with plenty of antics to keep the audience alert and on their feet. The songs they played:

  • Just Be Happy
  • My Friend
  • You Got A Friend In Me
  • Bright Spring Morning
  • Arigato
  • Autumn In The Park
  • Hey, DJ
  • Beauty And The Beast
  • Kiss The Girl
  • Sweet Caroline
  • Duck Tales
  • Just Can’t Wait To Be King
  • Whoa
  • High Fives

They returned for an encore, but I cannot remember the name of the song, unfortunately 😦

Want more of Suburban Legends? They will go on a brief tour in the Southwest starting on Saturday, August 9th. Until then, pay close attention to their Facebook page, as they may still play some shows at Disneyland! Come back to Irvine Regional Park next Thursday evening to see another local ska band, GOGO13, perform a FREE and all-ages show, same place and time!

As part of the annual Long Beach Sea Festival, a series of events taking place during the summer in Long Beach, the 1st Annual Love Long Beach Festival took place at the Granada Launch Ramp near Belmont Shore this past weekend. This FREE and all-ages event featured a plethora of family-fun things to do at the beach, such as sports competitions, a kids zone, arts & crafts, food, drinks, a beer & wine garden, art displays, vendors, and more. Plenty of activities occurred over the weekend to give visitors something to see, from a skating demo to communal yoga to sporting tournaments to live music and more. A handful of the vendors call Long Beach their home, so this festival gave back to the locals in multiple ways. Some of the vendors even gave away free samples over the weekend, such as Chia Pod. For the visitors looking for meals, Chef Paul Buchanan handled the majority of the food court area. Over at the music stage, many art exhibitors set up over to the side, providing a somewhat large open area in front of the stage for a makeshift dance floor. Between bands, a DJ would play dance hits, which eventually turned into EDM once the sun started setting.

Many more events will occur in Long Beach through October, so check out the Long Beach Sea Festival page linked above. Also check out the Facebook page for Alfredo’s Beach Club, as they host a handful of events on the beach too.

Underneath their tough exteriors, bikers have a sense of family and pride. This past Saturday at Harley Davidson of Huntington Beach, the charity Bikers Against Child Abuse International arrived to help host a fundraising event called All For The Kids. At this free and (sort of) all-ages event, visitors would find a massive display of motorcycles in the parking lot, motorcycle-themed vendors all around, live music in the afternoon, and a beer tent serving Hangar 24 and Einstök beer. Although advertised as no age restrictions, kids would not find much to do here, considering the amount of smokers and beer drinkers. Speaking of beer, all visitors could receive beer for FREE. The beer tent simply had a tip/donation box that allowed visitors to essentially pay their price for the beer. All of the money in this box went towards the Bikers Against Child Abuse charity, so visitors did not hesitate to donate towards the cause.

Huntington Beach Harley Davidson routinely holds varying events at their location in Westminster. Check out their website above for a full list of upcoming events. Also, give them a Like on Facebook to get updates about their event pages.

Much of the United States has this fixation about their local fair, whether the city or the state fair. From a narrow perspective, nothing changes year after year at the fair – if you attended previously, you would receive the same experience again the next time. This largely remains true persistently, but the experience generally changes based on who you attend the fair with, not which fair you attend. If you visit various fairs within the same region, you would see most of the same things: fair food, carnival rides, animals, and tons of vendors. For example, the San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles fairs all have the same basic outline of the aforementioned features. Once you have gone to one fair, you have basically experienced it all. So what can you do to continue to enjoy fair life without wading through the hoards of people in the hot sun? If you enjoy fair food, you would have wanted to go to Beachwood BBQ last week for their rendition of fair foods with a twist.

Nestled in a small space in historic old-town Seal Beach, Beachwood BBQ has garnered an outstanding reputation not only among the locals, but across the nation for their influence on the craft beer industry. Sure they revolutionized the idea of rotating taps, but Beachwood BBQ churns out some stellar eats above and beyond standard bar food quality. For the most part, one can see Beachwood BBQ’s menu as mostly bar food, since most, if not all, of the menu pairs really well with whatever beer they have on tap. Folks in the area last Thursday evening could truly immerse themselves in the bar food experience when Beachwood BBQ hosted a dinner night aptly entitled Beachwood On A Stick. On this night, Beachwood BBQ took a good look at common fair foods, and re-envisioned a more gourmet version of each of their ideas. In addition, each food item received its own beer pairing to go with it. Some of the pairings matched well, while a few lost me in the mix. You can peek at the menu above, or scroll down to read the descriptions plus my review.

  • Lamb Kofta, $5: smoked lamb, mint BBQ sauce | Pairs w/ Duvel Single Belgian Pale Ale

I will call this my favorite out of all of the menu. This looks small, but the sheer meatiness of it plus the unique minty BBQ sauce makes for a divine bite.

  • Poutine, $4: mashed potato, mozzarella, sage gravy | Pairs w/ Avery Samael’s Oak Aged Ale, an English Barleywine
  • Chicken Gumbo, $4: diced chicken, onions, bell peppers, okra, sassafras cream, fried rice | Pairs w/ Brouwerij Malheur 12° Belgian Strong Dark Ale

The Poutine basically represents a mozzarella stick, but with mashed potatoes in it as well. The gravy made it soggy, so it crumbled right off the stick. This did not contain meat, which made me sad 😦 Also this beer pairing sorely did not work out for me. On its own, this barleywine would taste great as a sipper. However, due to its strength, it badly damaged my palate.
The Chicken Gumbo basically represents a shish kabob, with no fancy tricks other than the fried (literally) rice.

  • Funnel Cake Dog, $4: smoked andouille sausage, powdered sugar | Pairs w/ Firestone Walker Easy Jack IPA

Take a really spicy sausage, batter it with funnel cake batter, dust some powdered sugar on it, and you have this… Emphasis on really spicy. The beer pairing, for as much IBU’s as it contains, could not douse the fire raging in my mouth.

  • Liver & Onions, $4: grilled chicken livers, roasted pearl onions, red wine demi glace | Pairs w/ Tahoe Mountain Bright Moments Pale Ale

Once you get over the fact that you have liver on a plate in front of you, the flavor comes up remarkably well. The texture of the liver may make some people queasy, so turn off your mind when you eat liver.

  • Chocolate Dipped Frozen Banana, $3: rolled in pork rinds | Pairs w/ Almanac Biere de Chocolat Porter

My favorite dessert, since it does not taste that sweet, and it also has pork rinds to give it a salty taste. Imagine a frozen chocolate banana with sea salt, and you have this amazing dessert seemingly easy to make at home.

  • Twinkie, $4: sorrel marshmallow filling, funnel cake fried | Pairs w/ New Belgium Wild² Dubbel

If they could tone down the sweetness, this would have turned out as the most demanded item. The funnel cake batter and the filling’s overbearing sweetness makes this large enough to split with another person.

Miss out on Beachwood On A Stick? Pay attention to their Facebook page, as they always announce events like this in advance there. Even if you cannot make it to a special dinner night, head on over to check out their ever-changing beer selection, plus their menu of great eats.

LA Restaurant Week
July 14-27
Greater Los Angeles Area

Hundreds of restaurants in the Greater Los Angeles Area will participate in this 12-day feast. All participating restaurants will offer either discounts on select items, or prix-fixe menus.

World Series of Beach Volleyball
July 22-27
Alamitos Beach, Long Beach

This unprecedented event brings the world’s greatest beach volleyball players and their fans together for a week-long celebration of the summer. Festivities will include including sports, music, local culture, food, drinks, activities, and more. Visitors may attend any of the events for free, while premium seating for the broadcast events comes with a price.

Suburban Legends @ Irvine Regional Park
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, July 24
Irvine Regional Park, Orange

Various parks around Orange County will host FREE and all-ages concerts this summer. This Thursday night, see local ska band Suburban Legends perform an unforgettable set. Food trucks will arrive to keep guests fed too.

The Aquabats: 20th Anniversary Tour
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, July 24
House of Blues, San Diego

The Aquabats continue their 20th Anniversary Tour, which sweeps through San Diego this week. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $22.

Naked Aggression @ Dipiazzas
7:00 pm – 1:00 am, July 24
Dipiazzas, Long Beach

Local hardcore punk bands invade Dipiazzas this Thursday night for an all-ages show. Nobody has posted the cover charge, so have some cash available for that. Guests can find plenty of free parking in the neighborhood behind Dipiazzas.

Sarah’s Birthday Extravaganza
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 24
Blacklight District Lounge, Long Beach

Local punk bands will tear it up this Thursday night in Long Beach. The cover for this show costs $8. No one under 21 may attend.

US Open of Surfing
July 25 – August 3
Huntington Beach, south of the pier

This week-long competition takes place on the shore south of Huntington Beach Pier. Come see professional and amateur surfers compete to take a spot for the ASP World Tour. Visitors will also find skateboarding demos and live music all week. Completely free to attend, this weekend will see thousands of spectators on the beach for the US Open. Expect heavy traffic all week. Try to find parking in the neighborhoods, but prepare to walk a long distance if choosing to park in neighborhoods, since the neighborhoods closer to the beach will remain full all week.

2014 Body Art Expo
2:00 pm – 11:00 pm, July 25
11:00 am – 11:00 pm, July 26
11:00 am – 8:00 pm, July 27
Fairplex, Pomona

Check out this all-ages tattoo expo running all weekend at the Fairplex in Pomona. Hundreds of tattoo artists from across the nation will fly in this weekend to deliver their works of art onto willing bodies. The expo will also feature live tribute bands, freak shows, a beer garden, hot body contests, tattoo contests, plenty of merchandise vendors, and more. Attendees interested in receiving ink should book an appointment with an artist – walking up to the artist may result in nothing if the artist fills up his or her schedule early. One-day admission costs $20, while a 3-day admission costs $45. Children under 10 enter for free with a paid adult admission, but note that no vendor will provide a tattoo or piercing to children. Please bring cash for parking, which may range from $5 to $10.

Summer Take Over
4:00 pm – 12:00 am, July 25
Toxic Youth Productions, Hemet

Tons of great Southern California punk bands will play a show this Friday evening in Hemet. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $12 presale or $15 at the door.

Monterey Park Night Market
5:00 pm – 10:30 pm, July 25
Barnes Park, Monterey Park

The popularity of night markets has surged within the past year. This Friday, Monterey Park gets their very own night market, complete with free admission. Come to this all-ages outdoor fair this Friday night, and check out all the food, drinks, desserts, merchandise, live entertainment, and more. Expect heavy traffic approaching this area, especially for a Friday night, so plan your commute accordingly.

24th Annual Taste of Yorba Linda
6:00 pm – 10:30 pm, July 25
Yorba Linda Community Center, Yorba Linda

Sample the best of food & drinks in Yorba Linda this Friday evening. For $45 presale or $55 at the door, guests get treated to a night of unlimited food tastings plus two drink tickets good for beer or wine. Guests may reserve a table for ten for $100.

A Little Bit of Chemical X – Chicks That Rock
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 25
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim

See some great local female-fronted bands at The World Famous Doll Hut this Friday night. The cover for this show costs $5. No one under 21 may attend.

33rd Annual Cypress 5K & 10K Run + 34th Annual Cypress Community Festival
6:00 am – 5:00 pm, July 26
Oak Knoll Park, Cypress

Two events occur back-to-back this Saturday in Cypress. Starting early in the morning, participate in a 5K or 10K run through the streets of Cypress. Following the run, a FREE all-ages & all-day festival will take place at the nearby park. Bring the family out to enjoy this fair with a car show, food, drinks, games, rides, arts & crafts, live entertainment, vendors, and more.

9th Annual Dog Days of Summer
9:00 am – 4:00 pm, July 26
The Park, La Habra Heights

Want a little exercise, socialization, and bonding with your dog? Come enjoy dog contests, custom pet products and animal adoptions. Completely free to attend for all ages, vendors will display the latest dog products and much more. Expect to see over 50 vendors, dog contests, live music, food, an agility course, a doggie photo booth, doggie crafts and more.

Long Beach Dragonboat Fest
9:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Marine Stadium, Long Beach

Come watch numerous teams race Dragonboats in Marine Stadium, with the finals on Sunday. Expect to see Chinese traditional art demonstrations, Chinese Acrobats, traditional dance, hip hop, music and martial arts performances. Spectators may attend and watch for free.

Belmont Shore Summer Sidewalk Sale
10:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Along 2nd Street, Long Beach

Various shops in Belmont Shore will offer sales on their items. Many shops will also place their items out on the sidewalk for people to browse as they walk by.

6th Annual Venice Beach Summer Fest
10:00 am – 7:00 pm, July 26-27
Venice Beach

See arts, crafts, music, food, drinks, and more at Venice Beach this weekend, free admission. Keep in mind the heavy traffic near this area this weekend. Expect to park somewhere near Abbot Kinney and walk to the beach from there.

Renegade Craft Fair
11:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Grand Park, Los Angeles

This free and all-ages fair at Grand Park will have arts, crafts, music, foodtrucks, drinks, and more. Come see the alternative side of arts & crafts this weekend.

Polycot Release Day
11:00 am – 12:00 am, July 26
Hangar 24 Brewery, Redlands

Hangar 24 Brewery will release their annual local summer brew this Saturday at their tasting room in Redlands. Visitors to the tasting room can enjoy this apricot beer at the tasting room, or they can take home bottles or growlers of it. Visitors will get treated to live music throughout the day, as well as food from a local vendor (at a separate cost). Those who cannot make it out to the tasting room can find Polycot at local grocery stores after this weekend.

1st Annual Vegan Faire
12:00 pm – 6:00 pm, July 26
Healthy Junk, Anaheim

This Saturday, check out this FREE and all-ages all-day festival showcasing the full spectrum of healthy lifestyle goods & services with booths & workshops focusing on food, environment, clothing and fitness. Catch live music on the promenade all day too.

Bottle Share #14
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, July 26
38 Degrees Ale House, Alhambra

Brew your own beer? Got an interesting craft beer to share? Bring it to 38 Degrees’ monthly bottle share event, taking place this Saturday afternoon, and discover other great beers too. Free to attend, guests should bring approximately 40-50 ounce’s worth of beer. The restaurant has its own free parking lot.

Punk Rock Luau #3
1:00 pm – 9:00 pm, July 26
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim

Don your flip-flops and Hawaiian shirts to this daytime punk rock show at the World Famous Doll Hut this Saturday. The cover for this show costs $7, or $5 if you wear a Hawaiian shirt. No one under 21 may enter.

Taps Summer Luau
3:00 pm – 6:00 pm, July 26
Taps Fish House, Brea

Enjoy five Polynesian craft cocktails, hula dancers, shave ice, and Polynesian food all for one price. Taps will even have a banana leaf-wrapped whole-roasted pig on site! Tickets to this tasting event costs $60. No one under 21 may attend.

Taps & Tapas: Craft Beer & Food Festival
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm, July 26
Whittier Community Center, Whittier

Come enjoy food from 18 restaurants and beer from 22 breweries at this local food & beer festival this Saturday evening in Whittier. General admission costs $45 at starts at 5pm, while VIP admission costs $60 and starts at 4pm.

The Crowd @ Alex’s Bar
9:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 26
Alex’s Bar, Long Beach

Local punk bands will hit up Long Beach this Saturday night. Tickets to this show cost $8 presale or $10 at the door. No one under 21 may attend.

Swiss Fair
11:00 am – 7:00 pm, July 27
Swiss Park, Whittier

The Annual Swiss Fair returns to Swiss Park in Whittier this Sunday. Guests of all ages will find Swiss food, drinks, desserts, vendors, dance, music, cheese tastings, games, and more. Entry costs $5, which includes parking.

Just Like Before performing Las Payasas Me Quieren Cojer at Dipiazzas in Long Beach, CA. Filmed on February 28, 2013.