Build a City from Scratch

LOVE IT: Seriously. It always amuses us when a venue or theater or concert hall marks a big milestone by making stuff free. It's like a thank you, to the fans, in a world short on thank yous. We're amused, yes, but we never want it to stop. And we don't think it will. Next up is the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, which is turning 25 this year. It's a major birthday, and the weekend-long party -- dates are Saturday, Oct. 1 and Sunday, Oct. 2 -- will reflect that majorness. First up on the majorness roster? Ozomatli. Hello. The band'll be rocking a free show at the Costa Mesa venue on Sunday, Oct. 2 at 5 p.m. And Cameron Carpenter, the erstwhile "bad boy of the organ world," will be working the keys madly beforehand at 1 p.m. Bad boy of the organ world? You do not need to twist our arm on that one. We're there.

PLUS: City building. We love the two musical performances on Sunday, but what is going down on both days in the Arts Plaza intrigues even a pinch more. The Center'll be setting out tons of cardboard boxes and letting kids build little urban developments out of 'em. That's neat, right? Neat. Performers will help the future architects construct and plan and deconstruct and think things through. We want to do this. If only the building of cities was such a snap. But maybe by the time the kids reach adulthood it will be? Oh, hopes. This is happening during set hours during the weekend, so check the Segerstrom schedule before heading over. Oh, and again? All free. (Well, all free out on the Plaza; the shows inside are ticketed, we'll note.) Thanks and happy 25th, Segerstrom.

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