September 2018 events calendar for Los Angeles

Plan your month with our September 2018 events calendar of the best activities, including free things to do, festivals and our favorite summer concerts
Photo courtesy LA County Fair Ferris wheel at LA County Fair.
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September may signal the end of summertime, but you’d never know it with this month’s packed schedule of major events. Start wrapping up your summer playlist and get in one last visit to one of L.A.’s best beaches while the water’s still, relatively speaking, warm. If you’d rather skip town, take advantage of the long Labor Day weekend to squeeze in a weekend getaway. But don’t worry, there’s no shortage of food fests, street fairs and other fun festivals in L.A. in our September events calendar.

RECOMMENDED: Full events calendar for 2018

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Pageant of the Masters
Photograph: Courtesy Festival of Arts
Art, Painting

Pageant of the Masters

icon-location-pin Laguna Beach
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Life imitates art, literally: Classic paintings, statues and murals take on a new dimension as real people dress and pose to recreate original masterpieces—a trick popularized by vaudeville artiste Lolita Perine at the first festival in 1932. A professional orchestra, a narrator, intricate sets and theatrical lighting help bring the works to life at the Festival of Arts in Laguna Beach (650 Laguna Canyon Rd). This year’s theme, “Under the Sun,” is inspired by Laguna’s own artistic pioneers.

Toby Keith
Photograph: Courtesy Andrew Southam
Music, Music festivals

Tailgate Fest

icon-location-pin Inglewood
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Pop a top and drop a tailgate at this inaugural Labor Day weekend country music festival. Toby Keith is topping the lineup, with the rest of the performers still to be announced. Held on the grounds of the Forum, the event also includes cornhole championships, a truck show and honky tonk dancing.

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626 Night Market
Photo courtesy of 626 Night Market
Things to do

626 Night Market

icon-location-pin Arcadia
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The midnight snacker's greatest fantasy is just a car ride away. One of America's largest Asian food markets spans the course of Santa Anita Park's front Paddock Gardens (285 W Huntington Dr). Come hungry and come caffeinated—this lively market, complete with over 150 Asian street food and booze peddlers, live music, artists, films, games, and beyond, won't put itself to bed until 1am on Friday and Saturday (and midnight on Sunday). The event has also expanded its way to Orange County.

BoJack Horseman
Photograph: Courtesy Netflix
Things to do

PaleyFest Fall TV Previews

icon-location-pin Beverly Hills
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Geek out with fellow TV nerds at Paley Fest’s fall preview, the annual weeklong festival of fall pilot screenings and panel discussions with the cast and creators of the hottest TV shows. Hosted by the Paley Center for Media, highlights include first looks at BoJack Horseman, The Kids Are Alright, Charmed, Get Shorty, Castle Rock and more.

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BTS
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Jeon Han
Music, Pop

BTS

icon-location-pin Downtown
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BTS, the first K-pop boy band sensation to make a splash in America, is embarking on a massive world tour. Lucky for us Angelenos, the Bangtan Boys kick off the North American leg of the tour with three nights at the Staples Center. Tickets go on sale May 5 at 10am—and we wouldn’t be surprised if all of the seats are snatched up immediately. Keep on the lookout for any additional dates to be added on their “Love Yourself” tour (there’s currently nothing on the calendar for September 7 at the Staples Center—just sayin’).

Mario de Lopez
Things to do, Classes and workshops

Dance Downtown + DJ Nights

icon-location-pin Downtown
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The Music Center offers a free, joyous mashup of music and dancing all summer long, with different themes (90s, line dancing, cumbia, etc.) and free dance lessons plus live bands. Dance Downtown switches off every week with DJ Nights, with a late night bar menu and DJs. Head to Grand Park and join in the fun—no dance experience required.

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Photograph: Courtesy Annenberg Space for Photography
Art, Photography

Not an Ostrich: And Other Images from America’s Library

icon-location-pin Century City
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Curator Anne Wilkes Tucker has pulled 500 of the most striking portraits and obscure curiosities from the Library of Congress’ staggering collection of 14 million images.

Silver Lake Picture Show
Photograph: Courtesy Silver Lake Picture Show
Things to do

Silver Lake Picture Show

icon-location-pin Silver Lake
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What better way to liven up a Thursday night than to cruise over to Silver Lake’s new Sunset Triangle Plaza for some gratis entertainment? Every other week through September, grab a summer snack, retire your wallet for the night and relax in front of the big screen. The Silver Lake Picture Show features your ultimate favorites, but not before spotlighting a short from a local filmmaker. Bring the fan and your friends to this free sampling of Eastside talent and a classic flick—this one’s a no-brainer.

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Things to do, Walks and tours

Roaring Nights at the LA Zoo

icon-location-pin Griffith Park
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See the zoo in a whole new light at this special after-hours exploration series. Those 18 and up can roam the zoo on their own or learn from pop-up zookeeper talks and live animal encounters. Unleash your own inner animal at live shows from local bands plus a dance party at the carousel. Local food truck faves will be on hand, along with a full bar for getting zoo-boozy.

Nocturnal Wonderland
Photograph: Courtesy Insomniac
Music, Music festivals

Nocturnal Wonderland

icon-location-pin San Bernardino
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While you won’t find much Alice in the Wonderland series of festivals, you will find a whimsical, carnival-like atmosphere drenched in Day-Glo and pulsating lasers. The multiple stages at Glen Helen Regional Park are musical platforms just as much as they’re art installations, with names like the Upside-Down Room and the Temple of Om. Last year’s lineup included the likes of Dillon Francis, Mija, Excision, DJ Mustard and more.

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