Walk for HIV / AIDS awareness and visit an actress’ home at weekend events near LA

Free this weekend? You can pick your perfect pumpkin, feast on Japanese street food, and walk for HIV / AIDS awareness in Southern California.

Throughout the Santa Ynez Valley

Six wine-focused towns host events during the four days of Taste of the Santa Ynez Valley, an excuse to spend the weekend in the wine country. Highlights include the Solvang Grape Stomp, Los Alamos Day in the Country family festival, and cooking classes in Ballard, Buellton, and Santa Ynez.

When: Oct 17-20. Check website for dates and times of events.

Cost, info: Events $ 25- $ 150. Check event websites for child and pet policies. Taste of the Santa Ynez Valley

Costa Mesa

Bring an appetite for sushi, ramen, and Japanese fried chicken to the 10th OC Japan Fair at the OC Fair and Event Center. Anime fans can catch the cosplay show on Saturday, while Mario Kart experts can take part in a gaming tournament all weekend. Other entertainment includes performances by Japanese artists and cultural demonstrations on sake, calligraphy, and kimonos.

When: 5:18 p.m. Oct., noon Oct. 19, 10:20 a.m. Oct.

Cost, info: $ 8, or free for children 6 and under and adults 65 and over. Friendly and family. Only assistance dogs are allowed. OC Japan Fair


Explore the historic Helena Modjeska house for free to celebrate the actress’s birthday. The tour includes Shakespearean performances, samples of Modjeska’s favorite marshmallow candy, and tales of his journey from Poland to California in the late 1800s. Telephone registration required.

When: noon 19 Oct

Cost, info: To free. Friendly and family. No dogs. (949) 923-2230


The 25th Brookside Park Pumpkin Festival features a pumpkin patch, fall crafts, carnival games, food trucks, and interactive performances by local dancers and bands. Profits go to the Kidspace Children’s Museum, which offers half-price admission to the museum for $ 7 per person during the event.

When: 9:30 a.m. Oct. 19 and 20.

Cost, info: Free entry to the festival; tickets for food and activities are $ 1 each. Friendly and family. No dogs. Pumpkin festival

Los Angeles

Walk to raise funds and raise awareness about HIV / AIDS at the 35th AIDS Walk in Los Angeles. The morning begins in front of City Hall with an aerobic warm-up and ceremony featuring activists, celebrities and musicians. Celebrate the end of the four mile walk with live music, food trucks, and free ice cream at the starting point.

When: 9:20 a.m. Oct.

Cost, info: Free participation; donations can be made online or at the event. Friendly and family. Dogs OK, but pet owners should be careful of potentially hot asphalt. Los Angeles AIDS Walk

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