This week in Los Angeles, take part in one of the Public Art Biennial’s workshops, catch a riveting dance performance, or take a stab at making your own version of the current “it” beverage. If you must get away from the city, head south to Coronado, where the beach and ocean beckon. Or stay glued to the TVs at Public School, which will be showing the Olympics (with a twist!) all week long.
AFAR Local is our weekly insider guide to the best of what’s happening in cities around the U.S.
August 11 | Art
Current:LA Olla Workshop
Los Angeles’s Department of Cultural Affairs was created to promote the diverse cultures and backgrounds of the city’s residents, as well as the economic, social, and political changes they must make together. Part of that initiative is Current:LA, L.A.’s Public Art Biennial going on now through August 14. This year, the biennial focuses on water—the resource Southern California is perpetually lacking. As part of the citywide event, artist Lauren Bon’s Metabolic Studio will be hosting a workshop using the clay from the L.A. River in which they are currently working. The class will leave you with an olla jar that can be buried in the ground, filled with water, and—since the water can easily pass through unglazed olla clay—used to irrigate plants.
10:30 a.m.–4 p.m.| Metabolic Studio, 1745 N. Spring St., Los Angeles | Free with RSVP | website
August 12 | Dance
Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre presents Fish Eyes
Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre is not afraid to conquer untraditional venues in its quest to bring larger-than-life choreography to a wider audience. The troupe is most well-known for site-specific installations and instilling creative energy in unlikely places like the L.A. River, public jails, vintage Cadillacs, and Airstream trailers. The company’s newest installation is a 15-foot stainless steel fish sculpture constructed by architect Alex Ward for the show Fish Eyes. Dancers maneuver through the fish in a series of performances focusing on water and drought (a big L.A. theme all the time—and especially this week, it seems).
8 p.m. | California Plaza, 350 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles | Free with RSVP | website
August 13 | Cooking class
Adventures in Kombucha
Kombucha is having a moment right now, but the drink has been around for centuries. Made by fermenting tea, the beverage is touted by many for its health benefits, especially when it comes to probiotics. Buying a bottle from the store will cost you around $4, so it makes sense to learn how to make your own if you’re going to be consuming the stuff regularly. The Springs, an eatery and juice bar that also offers yoga classes, is hosting master brewers from Kombucha Hunter to lead a class on all the aspects of making your own kombucha. This is part one of two; the second lesson will happen in October and is intended for intermediate to advanced brewers.
2–3:30 p.m. | The Springs, 608 Mateo St., Los Angeles | From $30 | website
August 13–14 | Escape the city
Coronado is just 10 minutes from downtown San Diego, but the town looks and feels like St. Bart’s. Stay at Hotel del Coronado, a lovely Victorian estate from the late 1800s that offers guestrooms as well as villas. The hotel is full of history—the first state dinner outside of the White House took place here under President Nixon—and it has its own guided tour to prove it. You can fill your days with activities: Coronado is right on the water, and boating, kayaking, surfing, and swimming are all local activities. On land, biking is popular, and the ferry landing area is home to art galleries, boutiques, and sweets shops like the don’t-miss Choco Amore.
Hotel del Coronado, 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado
Through August 21 | Olympic special
Gold Medal Nights
All Public School gastropub locations are making the Rio Olympic Games even more fun with viewing parties that include bar specials, bingo, and prizes. With outposts in downtown L.A., Culver City, and Thousand Oaks, there’s a Public School relatively near wherever you are in the city. And from now until the closing ceremony, every location is hosting Gold Medal Nights, during which you can watch the games on big-screen TVs, cheer on athletes, indulge in a special Gold Medal Cocktail, and play Olympic Bingo for prizes. It’s a serious win-win-win. When you get hungry, order the buffalo cauliflower and bacon cheddar tots; after all, Olympic watching is a serious sport.
Locations vary | website
Eva Glettner is a writer and a native Angeleno. She loves art, travel, coffee, and skateboarding.
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