After several months of pandemic-related closures, a number of regional cultural destinations, theme parks, aquariums, and other spots are gearing up for reopening, or have already welcomed guests back.
The announcements began soon after Los Angeles County entered the less-restrictive
Red Tier on March 15, permitting visitors inside a number of places, including museums and aquariums, at a limited capacity.
Important: Do keep in mind that every place on the list below has new safety protocols in place, which could include advance timed tickets. Knowing what to expect and prepare for ahead of time is a solid plan.
Reading up on masks, social distancing, and other safety guidelines at each site, before purchasing tickets, is strongly recommended.
Take a look at some of the firm-to-expected plans of local places below; this list will be updated and possibly revised in the weeks to come.
The Ford's much-anticipated season—featuring a rich diversity of local and regional Southern California artists, including perennial favorites and national acts—will open in late July and run for 15 weeks," revealed the LA Phil on April 9. "The Ford is committed to representing Los Angeles County on its stage and in its audience and will make the first six shows of the season free to the public." Programming details will be announced on May 25.
Hollywood Bowl will reopen, with smaller audiences, for the summer of 2021. Four free concerts for healthcare workers, first responders, and essential workers will take place in May and June, with made-for-the-public concerts beginning in July. A line-up announcement is expected on May 11.
Laemmle Theatres reopened on Friday, April 9. You'll want to read up on the new guidelines and advance ticketing procedures before choosing the film you'd like to see.
Kidspace Children's Museum
Kidspace Children's Museum, a Pasadena gem devoted to educational enrichment, will reopen to members on Earth Day (April 22). The general public return date? It's slated for some time in May. Something sweet: Butterfly season is on at the museum, which is close to Rose Bowl Stadium. Also sweet: The spot is known for its airy, stretch-a-leg outdoor spaces.
Ocean Institute in Dana Point is one of our region's must-visit spots for neato knowledge related to the Big Blue. It's set to again make a splash starting on April 10, with two new exhibits in tow. One will focus on sharks, so cool, and the other will take a deep dive into the topic of marine mammals.
The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County reopened on April 1, 2021. The outdoor Butterfly Pavilion is one of the ticketed features, as well as the institution's famous dinosaur displays. Please review
all safety guidelines before purchasing your advance tickets.
David Zaitz/Petersen Automotive Museum
Petersen Automotive Museum, the auto wonderland located on the Miracle Mile in mid-city Los Angeles, reopened on March 25. Check out The Vault presented by Hagerty, where several new inductees, including a K.I.T.T. car, are on view.
Skirball Cultural Center
Skirball Cultural Center will reopen on May 15 with "Ai Weiwei: Trace." The intricate installation "... features portraits made up of thousands of plastic LEGO® bricks, each assembled by hand and laid out on the floor." Look also for "The Animal That Looks Like a Llama But Is Really an Alpaca" a colossal installation featuring a composition created from gold-hued wallpaper.
The California African American Museum reopened on Saturday, March 27. Visitors can find a quintet of exhibitions on view, including "Men of Change. Power. Triumph. Truth." Advance reservations are required, but admission? It's free:
Find your ticket now.
Annenberg PetSpace in Playa Vista again began raising the woof on March 31. There's a "specialized hour-long experience" called the PetSpace Experience that includes a visit to the brand-new Critter Corner and a nifty peek behind the scenes. You'll need to book in advance; start that process here.
Art Theatre of Long Beach
The Art Theatre of Long Beach, the beloved indie cinema, is again open. "Nomadland" and "Minari" are currently screening. For info on tickets and what to expect,
La Brea Tar Pits Museum
La Brea Tar Pits Museum reopened on April 8. Travel back in local time at the "Mammoths & Mastodons" exhibit and check out what paleontologists are studying at the Fossil Lab.
The Autry Museum of the American West reopened on March 30, 2021. The Griffith Park-based museum will feature two limited-time exhibits, with more to come: "Masters of the American West" and "When I Remember I See Red." Advance reservations are necessary.
AaronP/Bauer-Griffin / Contributor
Amoeba Music debuted in its brand-new space on April 1, 2021. There's a special with-purchase poster giveaway on opening day, and other celebratory happenings. Remember your face mask and keep in mind that capacity will be limited.
Norton Simon Museum
Norton Simon Museum is looking to "... a phased reopening beginning in mid-May," per a March 23 announcement. There are still several ways to "enjoy the museum from home" via the Pasadena institution's web site.
© The Huntington/John Sullivan
Visitors may access the flowery grounds of
The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens now, but the galleries are currently closed. That's changing on April 17, when a trio of galleries at the San Marino landmark, including the one with Thomas Gainsborough's "The Blue Boy," will open.
California Science Center
California Science Center reopened on Saturday, March 27. The pavilion where the Space Shuttle Endeavour is displayed will again be open, as well as the center's exhibits, including the one devoted to LEGO bricks. Look also for the on-site IMAX Theater to resume screenings.
Aquarium of the Pacific
Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach reopened on March 16, following an earlier opening for members. The outside areas, including the Lorikeet Forest and shark pools, had already been open, but the indoor spaces had been closed prior to mid-March.
Mario Tama/Getty Images
Six Flags Magic Mountain in Valencia reopened on April 1. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Jeff Gritchen | Orange County Register | Getty Images
Disneyland park and Disneyland California Adventure are looking to the final day of April 2021 for their big reopenings. A Touch of Disney, a food experience, opened at Disney California Adventure on March 18.
AaronP/Bauer-Griffin | GC Images | Getty Images
AMC Theatres says it will have 98% of its U.S. movie theaters open on Friday (March 19) as a bunch of theaters reopen in California. Even more theaters are expected to open by March 26 following a year when families stayed home and watched from their couches."
The Bowers Museum in Santa Ana reopened on Wednesday, March 17. Several exhibits are on view, including a large-scale show devoted to the Walt Disney archives. That exhibit, which includes movie props, costumes, and artifacts related to Disneyland, has been extended to June 20.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art reopened on April 1 with six new shows, including a Yoshitomo Nara exhibit.
Sean Teegarden Photography
Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park is looking to May for its reopening. No date has been given, but the theme park's boysenberry-focused food festival ends on May 2.