Weekend: Celebrate Earth Day in SoCal

Join an Aquarium of the Pacific celebration, one that honors our planet in a host of meaningful ways.

Sarayut Thaneerat

Happy Earth Day: Our planet's heart-truest, future-forward-est party happens on April 22, but the festivities will flower throughout the weekend, in communities across Southern California. Aquarium of the Pacific will honor Earth Month with art, music, and more on April 23 and 24, there are several beach clean-ups (including one at Dockweiler) on April 23, Earth Day at the Bay will take place in Newport Beach, and Chatsworth Nature Preserve will host an April 23 Open House. Seeking a kid-fun dimension to the important occasion? Butterfly-themed fun is still fluttering at Kidspace in Pasadena. And on April 22, ground will be broken for the Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing (a livestream will be available to watch).

Festival of Books 2022: A fully in-person lit-tacular is back at the USC Campus, with celebrated authors, beloved booksellers, and a host of page-turning activities on the schedule. There are, in fact, 250+ events at the LA Times-hosted to-do, so perusing this wordly wonder before you go is recommended. Entry is free, you'll want to show with funds for books and/or snacks, and the Trojan Marching Band? They'll get the whole thing brassily off the ground. The dates are April 23 and 24, so do scan the participant roster to make sure your fave scribes will be there on the date you're thinking of attending.

Pan African Film & Arts Festival: This major multi-day event, which is scheduled through May 1, has been a centerpiece of the Southern California cinema scene for three decades. The lauded movie celebration, the "largest Black film festival" in America, will feature over 200 films from the U.S. and around the globe, including works in the John Singleton Short Story Film Competition, the "Snowfall" Season 5 finale premiere, and a Spotlight Screening of "The Man Who Fell to Earth" with Chiwetel Ejiofor. Cinemark Baldwin Hills is the hub for the PAFF screenings, while the festival's ArtFest will take place at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza.

Alexander McQueen Exhibit Opens: A fabulous frock, the sort of whimsical wearable that seems to have emerged from an especially baroque daydream? The garment just may have been designed by Alexander McQueen. The life and legacy of the Scottish superstar will be remembered in this new Los Angeles County Museum of Art exhibit, which will feature pieces from the designer's industry-changing collections, and artworks from LACMA, too, to complement the pieces. "Lee Alexander McQueen: Mind, Mythos, Muse" is on view from April 24 through Oct. 9, 2022.

Nighttime Spectaculars Return: What's that blinking merrily in the distance? It's the Main Street Electrical Parade, which returns to The Happiest Place on Earth starting on April 22. It's a celebration of the iconic procession's 50th anniversary, and guests can expect to find treats and merchandise themed to the night-bright event. Something else sweet? "Encanto" will be featured on a new grand finale float. Other after-sunset extravaganzas are also re-debuting at Disneyland Resort on April 22, including the "Disneyland Forever" fireworks show and "World of Color" at Disney California Adventure.

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