Weekend: OC Fair Opens and an Indie Art Fair Returns

The Costa Mesa spectacular is ready to blink-blink-blink on again, while Jackalope: An Indie Artisan Fair is back in Pasadena with handmade goodness.

OC Fair

What to Know

  • The OC Fair opens in Costa Mesa on July 16; tickets must be purchased ahead of time
  • Jackalope Art Fair, which offers free entry, will again be an in-person event at Central Park in Pasadena (July 17 and 18)
  • Other weekend happenings include the opening of DiscOasis, the return of Ice Cream Alley, Plumeria Day, and Summer Music Strolls

OC Fair: Oh, hello again, you gorgeous goats, sweet piglets, tall Ferris wheel, and treats that have been dunked in batter, fried, and covered in powdered sugar. Glad to see you're again glowing for it, in Costa Mesa, over four festive weeks. But wait, what's this? Anyone interested in attending this venerable and much-loved county fair, which features a charming midway, adorable animals, and more, should absolutely and most definitely buy their tickets in advance, not at the gate. Cool? Cool.

Jackalope: An Indie Artisan Fair: If you've missed chatting with artisans, and strolling by sun-dappled booths, and finding the perfect woven belt for your brother or beaded earrings for your mother-in-law or funky felt hat for your cousin, here's something cheerful: The large-scale handmade festival returns as an in-person happening on July 17 and 18. As with past fairs, entry to Jackalope is free. Where to hop, hop, hop? Central Park in Pasadena.

DiscOasis: Roller skating has enjoyed a stylish moment in the sun over the last year and several months, with plenty of people returning to a pastime they loved when their were youngsters (or discovering it for the first time). With that in mind, are you fully ready to roll in a verdant setting, among pro skaters, with food, sips, and fab-tastic tunes offering you motivation to move? This sweet skate scene, imaginatively created by the legendary Nile Rodgers, is putting its glitter bumpers down in South Coast Botanic Garden, over select nights, through Labor Day Weekend.

National Ice Cream Day: Talk about your super-solid timing. The ice-creamiest holiday on the calendar lands just when we need something frosting in our mitt, a cool-down delectable to keep us moving through triple-digit days. To celebrate the icy occasion on July 18, Smorgasburg LA, "the largest weekly open-air food market in America," is bringing back its popular Ice Cream Alley, which is, yes, a row of purveyors devoted to creative scoops and picture-worthy toppings. Entry is free, but bring money for the good stuff.

Garden Goodness: Keeping close to the outdoors this weekend? Here's something ultra-fragrant and lovely to look upon: Los Angeles County Arboretum and Garden is celebrating Plumeria Day on July 17. You'll need to pay admission to the Arcadia wonderland of plants and flowers, do note, to bask in the fragrant blossoms. And at Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge? It's all about the peaceful perambulating. Enjoy a "Summer Music Stroll" on July 17 and 18 (but get those tickets ahead of time).

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