Fun for Families this Summer

July 26, 2012
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Hold on to summer, families! I always panic this time of year. I’m just not ready for summer to be over. Although I haven’t had a lazy summer in decades, I still hold tight to the fantasy of three playful months dedicated to fun. This year, to make things worse, stores have been pushing back-to-school sales since July 5 because kids now go back to the classroom mid-August.

Here are some tips to help you hold on strong to summer:

Every Friday in August: Free outdoor films!

Bring your blankets, low-slung camping chairs, and popcorn to watch movies outdoors, in the park, under the stars! We worked with the Los Angeles International Children’s Film Festival to put together five nights of great animated films (Bolt, Puss in Boots, How to Train your Dragon and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs) plus some super creative shorts from Pixar and independent filmmakers from around the world. All films are kid-oriented (rated either G or PG) but are still fun for adults. And, they are free!

Video still: Jack-Jack Attack, dir. Brad Bird, 2005

Every Sunday in August: Andell Family Sundays

Riffing on "dog days of summer" we’ve got Dragon Days of summer! From 12:30 to 3:30 on Sundays in August families can make dragon puppets out of Chinese take-out boxes, design royal dragon badges, and cool down from the August heat in LACMA’s gallery dedicated to dragons! (Don’t worry: only one of the dragons is fire-breathing.) Go dragon-spotting on your own or join an interactive tour with one of our Gallery Educators to learn about these mythological beasts featured in works of art from Asia and Europe. Free for NexGen members!

Dragon Puppet Workshop
China, Badge (Lizi) of the Imperial Prince with Dragon, late Ming dynasty (1368-1644), mid-17th century

Labor Day: The Last Day of Summer!

Brighten up. We’ve planned a fun way to spend the end of summer. September 3 is Target Free Holiday Monday which means free general admission for everyone, live music, tours, and more! Be sure to check out the colorful and innovative Mola textiles from Panama either on-your-own or on an interactive tour with a gallery educator. You and your kids will love the designs featuring a mix of pop culture (Felix the Cat!), politics, and advertising slogans. Plus, the combinations of the different fabrics are stunning. And, if another summer has passed and you (still) didn’t get that Caribbean vacation, you can dance and sway to the reggae and calypso beats of Panamanian musician Rogelio Mitchell. He and his friends will perform sets at 12:30 and 2:45 pm on the museum’s plaza with tunes that will transport you, make you smile, and help you hold on to summer perhaps a bit longer!

San Blas, Kuna People, Felix the Cat, Panama, last quarter of 20th century

Karen Satzman
Director of Youth and Family Programs