New Year's Eve: The parties are plentiful, with hotels, restaurants, bars, and bevies of other spots getting into the paper hat-wearing, noisemaker-twirling high jinks. As for the mondo reveleries? Grand Park's N.Y.E.L.A. will once again serve as "the West Coast's flagship New Year's Eve Celebration," while EVE at Universal Studios Hollywood will bring the fireworks and dance areas. It's the Roaring Twenties again at Union Station's Prohibition NYE, while the Queen Mary and Long Beach enjoy a sky show over the water. The earlier NYE kid fun on Sunday, Dec. 31? Look to the LA Zoo and Kidspace Children's Museum.
The 129th Rose Parade Prep: Southern Californians know that rosy happenings around the region start well ahead of New Year's Day, and so it is with the 2018 event. The horse-beautiful Equestfest trots on Friday, Dec. 29 in Burbank, Bandfest gets musical on Dec. 29 and 30 at Pasadena City College, and loads of spots are busily decorating all of those giganto floats with the help of so many dutiful and diligent volunteers. If you're in Pasadena, or nearby, you're probably seeing oodles of prep, but you can get closer to the parade, before the parade, at the events mentioned above. Hoorah!
Polar Bear Swim: Dash into the Pacific Ocean, then dash back to the Annenberg Community Beach House pool, at this first-ever around-New-Year's-y cold dunk event. It's ticketed, do note — an adult ticket is $10 — and lively stuff'll weave through, like s'mores and games and the all-important "warm beverages." The morningtime event means the ocean will be dang chilly, so ponder that before deciding you'd like to play a part in this brrrful outing. It's on Saturday, Dec. 30, keep in mind, and not New Year's Day, which is the usual day for Polar Bear Swims around the nation.
Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors: Tickets sold out twice, in lickety-split fashion, for this beyond-talked-about art exhibit at The Broad. But good news arrived for those eager to go the stand-by ticket route: It would happen each day of the esoteric, mirror-room'd show, and there'd be extended hours, too. If you're jumping to go stand-by, or you have one of the final tickets to the exhibit at the downtown museum, take note: This is the final final last and final weekend, with a closing date of Monday, Jan. 1.
What to do, where to go and what to see
The Marx Brothers at The Aero: New Year's Weekend is traditionally a time of movie amazingness for many cinephiles, and while a caboodle of new movies'll see big audiences, there are those vintage flicks that'll also get the love. As is tradition, American Cinematheque will screen two classic Marx Brothers flicks on the first day of the year, all to put people in a laughing mood for the next 364. "Horse Feathers" and "Animal Crackers" are the films on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018, so if you need to launch '18 with some guffaws and chortles, you've got it made, Marx-style.