Weekend: Welcoming Lunar New Year

The Americana at Brand will say hello to the Year of the Rat, while a celebration in Beverly Hills will get the festivities started.

Americana at Brand

The Year of the Rat: Finding a place to see performances, traditions, and other touchstones of the Lunar New Year? The next few weeks will be full of festivities, for sure, but there's no need to wait if you want to raise the celebratory spirit. The Americana at Brand will have both "gourmet food and cultural activities" on the afternoon of Sunday, Jan. 19, while Beverly Hills begins its Chinese New Year observation at the Saban Theatre on Saturday, Jan. 18.

dineL.A. Restaurant Week begins: No needs to tell you, or anyone who has spent nine seconds in Southern California, that the region is on the large side. So its Restaurant Week? Also notably colossal. In fact, it runs for far longer than a week, though it is termed a "Restaurant Week." Hundreds of eateries are involved in the Jan. 17-31 event, over 400, in fact, covering all sorts of price points and cuisines. And can you find lunch or dinner at most places and pay a flat prix fixe price to enjoy your meal? You bet.

"VOLTA" opens: Thrilling to the comical antics and whizbang acrobatics of Cirque du Soleil is easy to do, all while understanding that the performers train for years to reach a place where all of their exquisite acting and athleticism looks so effortless. This spectacular show, which opens under the big top at Dodger Stadium on Jan. 18, will put a spotlight on street sports, with BMX skills, balancing feats, and even ballet playing a role.

Goat Yoga at LA Arboretum: If you've called upon the glorious and story-filled spread of plants, flowers, and historic buildings in Arcadia, you know it is home to some interesting animals. But a few other interesting animals will visit on Sunday, Jan. 19. For that's when Hello Critter will call upon the Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanical Garden for a morning of breathwork, mat stretches, and utterly adorable goat interactions. Yep, you can take a photo with a goat or two after class, too.

Winter Wonderland: Any person with a heart, and imagination, and a love of fun pursuits — so that's all of us, we do think — knows that Santa doesn't just fold up his village and call it a day after Christmas. In fact, Santa's Village, near Lake Arrowhead, is keeping the wintry whimsy strong, each and every weekend through March. That means ice skating and the train and other kid-pleasing pastimes are still ringing like so many jingle bells around the property. Heading up for some mountain snow? Swing by for some gingerbread-scented sweetness.

Seasonal Ice Rinks Say Farewell: There's still time to get a few frosty spins in, in the sunshine, before the pop-up holiday rinks take their final bow. Both Bai Holiday Rink Pershing Square and ICE Presented by the Plaza Santa Monica will keep the cold high jinks on the twirl through Monday, Jan. 2020, so you'll need to don your blades before then. Can you rent skates at both spots? You can, so no worries if your own pair is currently getting re-bladed.

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