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Pumpkin trail at Carved
Photograph: Time Out/Michael Juliano

October 2023 events calendar for Los Angeles

Plan your month with our October 2023 events calendar of the best activities, including free things to do, Halloween festivals and our favorite fall concerts

Michael Juliano
Edited by
Michael Juliano
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While fall foliage is sparse in L.A., the there’s no shortage of Halloween spirit. It’s October, so there are precious few weeks left to secure your haunted house and spooky screenings tickets. If Halloween isn’t really your holiday, then celebrate the end of summertime and enjoy one of the best hikes in L.A. sans the seasonal crowds. Regardless, you’ll find something to do in L.A. in our October events calendar.

RECOMMENDED: Full events calendar for 2023

This October’s best events

  • Music
  • Rock and indie
  • Hollywood

Aughts indie fans, you might want to have a fainting couch ready: Ben Gibbard will be pulling double duty to play through two of 2003’s—and possibly the decade’s—most indelible albums. For one night at the Hollywood Bowl, you can see Gibbard front Death Cab for Cutie to play through Transatlanticism, as well as the Postal Service (with Jimmy Tamborello and Jenny Lewis) to perform Give Up.

  • Things to do
  • Markets and fairs
  • price 0 of 4
  • Downtown Arts District

Every Sunday you can find dozens of food vendors at this market at ROW DTLA, with a mix of much-loved pop-ups and future foodie stars. Look out for this year’s new vendors, including The Golden Skewer, Shlap Muan and Thai Town's Rad Na Silom.

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  • Things to do
  • price 0 of 4

The term CicLAvia stems from a similar Spanish word for “bike way,” and in L.A. it’s become a shorthand for the temporary, festival-like closing of L.A.’s streets. The event (inspired by the first Ciclovías in Bogotá, Colombia) welcomes bikes, tricycles, skateboards, strollers and basically anything else without an engine to ride a rotating cast of car-free routes. You’ll inevitably always find a route each year around Downtown, but past events have taken it anywhere from the harbor to the San Gabriel Valley. For 2023, CicLAvia makes its return with a five-mile route along Sherman Way, though Canoga Park, Winnetka and Reseda, on February 26. The rest of the year’s lineup includes Mid-City Meets Pico Union (Apr 15), South L.A.: Vermont Avenue (June 18), Koreatown Meets Hollywood (Aug 20), Heart of L.A. (Oct 15) and South L.A.: Leimert Parks Meets Historic South Central (Dec 3). This year will also see the introduction of CicLAmini, a pair of one-to-two–mile pedestrian-focused events in Watts (May 21) and North Hollywood (Sept 17). Expect music, street performances and food trucks, as well as general whimsy and shenanigans along the way. Shop owners and restaurants along the CicLAvia route also tend to host specials. It goes without saying that you should bike or take the Metro to your desired spot along the route.

  • Music
  • Pop
  • Pasadena

Chris Martin and his galaxy-conquering pop-rockers are back, with a new album Music of the Spheres. Whatever your thoughts on whether you ever want to hear “Yellow” ever again in your entire life (like, ever) Coldplay can always be counted on to put on a spectacular and impressively staged live show. H.E.R. and 070 Shake open during this show at the Rose Bowl.

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  • Art
  • Street art
  • Downtown

Keith Haring’s colorful, energetic designs—like his barking dogs or crawling stick figure-like radiant baby—have moved well beyond the world of street art over the past four decades and ingrained themselves as instantly recognizable pieces of pop art. Now, the Broad will examine that body of work in a museum setting with this display of over 120 artworks and archival materials. The specially ticketed “Keith Haring: Art is for Everybody” will explore the late New York artist’s artistic practices as well as his activism, including his work centered on nuclear disarmament, anti-Apartheid movements and the HIV/AIDS crisis. Tickets for the exhibition will go on sale in the spring of 2023. In conjunction with the show, the free-to-visit permanent galleries upstairs at the Broad will display works from Haring’s contemporaries, including Jean-Michel Basquiat, George Condo, Jenny Holzer, Kenny Scharf and Andy Warhol; and the gift shop will transform into a space inspired by Haring’s own 1980s New York retail space.

  • Music
  • Music festivals
  • price 3 of 4

When We Were Young’s 2022 debut hasn’t even gone down yet, but the Las Vegas festival has already announced a second outing that shifts ever so slightly from emo-pop toward the sort of “shut up, mom” style of pop-punk that dominated the turn of the millennium. Green Day and a freshly reunited Blink-182 will headline the next edition of the fest, with additional sets from the Offspring, Good Charlotte, Yellowcard, Sum 41, Simple Plan, New Found Glory, Rise Against, Something Corporate, Motion City Soundtrack, Saves the Day and 30 Seconds to Mars (yep, the Jared Leto band). That’s not even half the lineup set to play the Las Vegas Festival Grounds on October 21, 2023 (for reference, the sold-out 2022 event eventually added two extra dates). Presale starts Friday, October 14 at 10am. Check out the full lineup below. Courtesy Live Nation

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  • Music
  • Pop
  • price 4 of 4
  • South Park

When last she played L.A., Madonna spent nearly two weeks at the Wiltern. This time around, the patron saint of pop is scaling up a bit with shows at the Crypto.com Arena at Kia Forum, part of her 40th anniversary Celebration Tour.

  • Things to do
  • Exhibitions
  • price 2 of 4
  • Miracle Mile

Before it became synonymous with soaring stock prices and sound bites from the now-Chief Twit, Tesla was just a car company blending automotive design and technology in a way that was truly ahead of the curve. The Petersen Automotive Museum is looking back on the electric car company’s two-decade history and into its future with this display of concept and prototype vehicles, including the Roadster and the maybe-it’ll-come-out-next-year Cybertruck.

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  • Art
  • Sculpture
  • price 2 of 4
  • Miracle Mile

We’re all kind of obsessed with the lighting in Southern California, but the local progenitors of the 1960s Light and Space movement really love it. (Fun fact: The glossy, slick style that ties these industrial-inspired pieces together is often referred to as “finish fetish.”) LACMA is digging into its collections to pull out all sorts of reflective and refractive works from the likes of Peter Alexander, Larry Bell, Judy Chicago, Mary Corse, Fred Eversley and Robert Irwin, among others (though one notable name missing: James Turrell).

  • Music
  • Pop
  • price 3 of 4
  • Inglewood

Everyone's favorite snarly pop songstress brings her vast collection of female empowerment and kiss-off anthems to SoFi Stadium. Dubbed the Summer Carnival (despite taking place in October), the stadium-sized show includes support from Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo, Grouplove and KidCutUp.

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