Got a kid? LA can still be your playground, and we're not talkin' about the park or those germy indoor jungle gyms. Whether you're a music lover, an art tart or a scenester who simply likes to be out and about, there are options that don't require a sitter or sitting out on grown-up fun. Read on for five of the coolest family-friendly happenings in town, Nightranger (and Ranger Jr!) approved.
5. La Luz de Jesus Art Openings- Free booze, colorful art and a toy store in one? La Luz and Wacko's monthly bashes are no-brainers when it comes to fete-ing with la familia. Of course, you should check ahead to make sure the art is appropriate for innocent eyes (if it isn't, it's usually above their heads, ie, the cartoony "Henry & Glenn Forever" show up now). 4633 Hollywood Blvd. (323) 666-7667.
4. The Messaround- LA Weekly contributor Jonny Whiteside just celebrated the one year anniversary of his monthly Sunday afternoon dance party at Viva Cantina in Burbank, a bash that always has a few 5-10 year-olds boogie-ing in front of the stage. This past Sunday offered a noisier line-up (LA Punk legends The Gears, garage grinders The Hangmen) so the young-uns were mostly teens slamming about in a makeshift pit. Moshing in a Mexican restaurant... with kids. Only in LA. 900 W. Riverside Dr., Burbank. (818) 845-2425.
3. The Redwood Bar & Grill- We wouldn't bring the little ones here for a late rock gig, but noshing on fish and chips in the front room during an early band set (they play in the back so it's not too loud) or during the bar's brunch shows is a blast for the li'l ones. Two words: pirate décor. Arrrrgh! The owners have kids so they are always welcoming. 316 West 2nd St., dwntwn. (213) 680-2600.
2. The Bootleg Theatre- This all ages venue is great place to take teens to see bands and smaller ones will enjoy some of the dance offerings. For the preschooler scene, they just added Adam Shenkman (a staple at Silver Lake Lounge for his crazy comedy shows). Shenkman's "Breakfast Show" for children, features singing, dancing and cereal eating! Next show is on March 27 and we'll be there! 2220 Beverly Blvd. (213) 389-3856.
1. FYF Kids- FYF, has ironically, thrown some of the best kiddie events we've been to. We say ironically, because, well, let's face it, the name does reference the one word nobody wants their kid to say. Still, F-Yeah's day events at the Eagle Rock Center for the Arts feature live music acts that even kidless rockers want to go to (all attendees must have a tyke with 'em to get in) and free ice cream for all. Plus, the awesome kid book writer Dallas Clayton does readings and gives out free books. See hiswebsite to see why he really is awesome. Ted Leo supported Glass Candy at the Echo the night before his FYF kids show this past Sunday, but apparently the kiddie set was more fun. "This is the coolest crowd I've ever played for!," he said smiling, before tearing into a giddy acoustic set. What made it even cooler? Keith Morris deejaying a mix of Mary Poppins, The Beach Boys and The Ramones (not "Beat On the Brat")2225 Colorado Blvd. (323) 226-1617.
More photos in this week's Nightranger slideshow.