Summer Goal: Attend Outdoor Concerts

During the summer, outdoor concerts are great opportunities to enjoy music outside for low cost or even free. There are still many scheduled outdoor concerts in our area.

outdoor concerts janss
Janss Marketplace Summer Concerts – Wednesdays 6PM through August 24

In summer, we’re more relaxed, less busy, and in my case, a little bored. We traveled a lot early in the summer but now we’re in the home stretch between trips and back-to-school, so I look around for stuff to do with the family, hoping to spark my kids’ imagination and get their bodies moving. Otherwise? Video games and YouTube (gag me). I mean I love a good YouTube video, but not all day long. Can you feel me, parents?

So I rallied the kids and husband and we went out to Janss Marketplace (you know, the one with Toys R Us and the newly redone movie theater and that awesome fountain) for their Summer Concert night. It happens every Wednesday at 6PM through August 24. The concerts are outdoors, free, and feature great local cover bands.

outdoor concerts radio rebels band 80's covers

On the evening we first went, Radio Rebels played 80’s tunes, and not just the ones you hear on Flashback Friday on the radio all the time. They played Def Leppard and Cyndi Lauper and Billy Idol and Men at Work and they sounded great.

There’s plenty of seating on the lawn in chairs that the staff sets up beforehand, and people brought blankets and their own chairs and food for picnics. Kids and adults were dancing near the stage, or in the fountain, as my kids did:

outdoor concerts kids fountain play

We had a great time just chilling at a table and watching both the band and the kids. It was so easy! I won’t be slacking off and skipping these anymore. Next time we’ll bring snacks or grab some dinner or a beer at the new Dudes’ Brewing Company first and then mosey over to watch the music.

outdoor concerts big bang television skirball

Skirball Cultural Center Family Amphitheater Performances – Saturdays and Sundays 12PM and 2PM through September 4

Since it’s been so hot the last few weeks, we’ve stayed inside during the worst hours, but at Skirball Cultural Center (you know, that place you pass when you’re leaving the Valley on the 405 and you think “I should check that place out someday”) the concerts are held in a covered amphitheater right outside the popular Noah’s Ark exhibit. Seating is shaded, so when we visited to watch Big Bang Television, a band that describes itself as “Hollywood Garage Pop,” we were comfortable and entertained.

noahs ark

Since I had never been to the Center, we got timed entry for Noah’s Ark (as guests of the Center) and explored that exhibit before heading outside. Even my big kids enjoyed the interactive artwork and climbing opportunities. Everything used to make this multi-staged exhibit, arranged by rooms to tell the story of Noah’s Ark, was something else in its previous life. Sunglasses became butterflies. Car seats and gloves became a gorilla. Forks became the majestic fur around a lion’s neck.

outdoor concerts big bang television skirball audience

There was music inside, too, as two energetic performers led the children in Noah’s Ark in drum circle activities. It was a great prelude to the outdoor concert, which was lots of fun. Big Bang Television isn’t a kid’s band, but their original songs had upbeat spirit and the lead singer’s high pitched voice commanded the attention of even the little kids in attendance.

skirball baseball

The Skirball Center is a great place to spend a day with your kids. Besides Noah’s Ark, they currently have a baseball exhibit complete with a Dugout – a room filled with kids’ activities and even a wardrobe with a baseball uniforms you can wear for a photo opp! In the art studio, kids can make anything they want, but they can also follow the guided activity (on this visit, my son made a board game). Snacks and lunch are available in the cafe. Tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for children 2-12.

Where are your favorite outdoor concerts in the area? Here are few that I want to check out:

Outdoor Concerts Near Agoura Hills

Agoura Hills Concerts in the Park – August 7 and 21, 6PM
Chumash Park
5550 Medea Valley Dr
Agoura Hills, CA 91301

Saturday Concerts in the Park – Platinum Groove, August 20, 7PM
Berniece Bennett Park
31800 Village Center Road
Westlake Village, CA

Sun Sets Concert Series – August 7 and 28, 6PM
Calabasas Lake
enter at Calabasas Tennis & Swim Center
23400 Park Sorrento
Calabasas, CA 91302
Free and open to the public

Malibu Wines – live music on weekends (21 and over only)
31740 Mulholland Hwy
Malibu, CA 90265
Free Admission, wine purchase suggested (and I recommend!)

Summer Jazz Concert Series – Sundays through August 28, 5:00-6:30PM
Gardens of the World
2001 Thousand Oaks Boulevard
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

Summer Concerts in the Park – August 15 and September 5, 5PM
Conejo Community Park
1175 Hendrix Ave
Thousand Oaks, CA

Concert in the Park – Led Zepagain, August 20, 6:30PM
Rancho Simi Community Park
1765 Royal Ave
Simi Valley, CA

Concerts on the Green – Sundays through August 28, 6PM
Warner Park
5800 Topanga Canyon Blvd.
Woodland Hills, CA
Free (but the most convenient parking is $15)

The Village Unplugged – Acoustic sets on Sundays at 3PM and occasionally during the week
The Village at Topanga
6600 Topanga Canyon Boulevard
Canoga Park CA 91303
Free (there is a charge for parking in the Village’s lots and garage)

Summer Movie Series at Malibu Country Mart

Great news! Malibu Country Mart’s Summer Movie Series begins tomorrow! 

mcm movie night banner
I don’t spend enough time at Malibu Country Mart. Every time I go there, I am reminded of how beautiful the location is, not to mention the people you see when you’re people watching there.

This weekend, Malibu Country Mart’s Summer Movie Series begins! The shopping center encourages families, shoppers, Malibu locals and movie fans to grab their beach blankets and picnic baskets to watch fun, family movies projected onto a giant outdoor screen.

malibu country mart movies

Saturday, June 11th: Pee Wee’s Big Adventure

Saturday, June 25th: Troop Beverly Hills

Saturday, July 2nd: Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure

This is a beautiful, calm place to bring your children. Swings and a sandbox are nearby if they somehow get bored! Parking is available all around Malibu Country Mart.

The movies chosen should appeal to children who are a little bit older. I watched Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure last summer with my kids who were 8 and 10 at the time. They laughed their little heads off, even if every other joke was a little too…mature…and didn’t register with them. On the other hand, they weren’t big fans of Pee Wee Herman. It wasn’t personal – they just hated his laugh. Blasphemy, I say. Your kids will probably appreciate him more…

Movies will begin at approximately 7:45 PM. Taverna Tony’s, Mr. Chow Malibu and Tra di Noi will also be open for guests to order menu items to enjoy during the films.

Malibu Country Mart
3835 Cross Creek Rd.
Malibu, CA 90265

Malibu Country Mart’s Annual Winter Wonderland

malibu country mart christmas tree

Starting this Saturday, December 6, and running through December 20, the Malibu Country Mart will be transformed into a winter wonderland, SoCal style. There will be the usual suspects: Christmas tree, menorah, and twinkling lights. But on each of the December Saturdays before Christmas there will also be special activities.

Victorian carolers will stroll through the Mart, singing holiday favorites while children participate in holiday-themed activities such as stocking and dreidel decorating, face painting, and homemade cookie decorating.

malibu country mart holiday events

And for the older kids and parents, the stores in Malibu Country Mart will be running holiday specials. If you’ve never bothered to stop at the Mart on your way to somewhere else, trust me. It’s worth it. In fact, it’s a great destination in itself!

See their website for additional information.