Weekend: LA Marathon

Mile 18 has the cheering, but there are lots of good spots to watch.

LA MARATHON: Whether you run in our city's mondo hoof-it extravaganza or you find some curb to root for a pal, let this be said: Running events don't come much larger. Meaning a little planning, from where to park (it kicks off at Dodger Stadium) to where to meet loved ones (the 26.2er finishes in Santa Monica) to when to visit the NutriBullet Health & Fitness Expo is in order. Oh, and there's entertainment all along the route, to boot. Or to athletic shoe, rather. Want to be near Cheer Alley? That's around mile 18, spectactors. The run wends its way on Sunday, March 9.

LA WEEKLY FOOD FEST: If you know publications around town, interesting restaurants, or being in the know, you know about the annual Essentials round-up from LA Weekly. It lists the eateries an Angeleno should know, so, yep, it is way helpful. Like, way way. But how to celebrate such a suptastic issue? Throw a food party, with a few dozen of our region's favorite cooks doing dishes that regulars rave over. The spot's LA Mart, and the date? It's Sunday, March 9, so best look into marathon workarounds, gourmandistas.

DANA POINT WHALE FESTIVAL: There are quite a few whale-focusted festivities in the world, and thank goodness, but not all that many go for two weekends. One exception? Dana Point. They have so much whale-y goodness at heart that they spread out their many, many mammoth-mammal-lovin' activities over four full days. Most are on land, a few head out for the water, and the dates? There's a weekend to go: March 8 and 9. If you skipped weekend #1, because of the rain, consider this your make-good, whale lover.

HOLI FESTIVAL: One of the most colorful and festive occasions in India unfurls in Norwalk on Saturday, March 8. Tunes, yoga, and food fill the grounds, and the hues drenching the participants? They're bright, picturesque, and beautiful. Head for Excelsior High School from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

CHARLES BUKOWSKI TRIBUTE: Writers and cities have long been linked, but few scribes and few metros are as pea-in-a-pod-y as the author of "Ham on Rye" and Los Angeles, California. Fans will gather at the King Eddy Saloon downtown to remember the writer on the 20th anniversary of his death. The event? Free. The readings? Plentiful. The date and time? Sunday, March 9 at 6 p.m.

FESTIVAL OF THE KITE: If you're somewhere in the neck of Redondo Pier on Sunday, March 9, and you see a mess of colorful, streamer-laden kites in the sky, here's why: It's the 40th anniversary of the free kite party. It's one of the state's biggest string flings, and it's free to see. Want to stay and nosh? Taste of the Pier, and other outside-sweet festival-y to-dos, go on during the day.

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