International Women’s Day is Sunday March 8 and L.A. has many special events planned to bring awareness, recognition, solidarity and a call to action for women’s issues. March is also Women’s History Month, and this year commemorates the 100th anniversary of a woman’s right to vote in the United States. Forward-thinking California was instrumental in making it happen too — in 1911 this state was the sixth to allow women the vote and in doing so essentially doubled the number of eligible women voters, bringing momentum to the suffrage movement and helping to assure women’s opinions were represented in American politics. Just nine years later (1920) the 19th Amendment became law.
A few decades later, advertisers targeting women celebrated the passing of the 1972 Equal Rights Amendment by telling us You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby to sell cigarettes and recognizing that women can “bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan” while pimping perfume, but even with this kind of consumer-based marketing, women continued to get the short end of the stick. A hit song of the same era told us, “I am woman, hear me roar in numbers too big to ignore, “but equal opportunity, fair pay and safety are still elusive for many and continue to be serious topics in America and the rest of the world nearly fifty years later. International Women’s Day celebrations remind us that we are all in this together, both men and women, and that respect and equality are human rights that should never be withheld or taken for granted. Here, our picks for women-driven events through next week.
The W Hotel celebrates International Women’s Day with two What She Said panel discussions at each of its L.A. locations, gathering wisdom from the minds of some of Los Angeles’ inspiring women entrepreneurs in the fields of beauty, fashion, wellness, skincare, television hosting and talent relations. Both events are open to the public and the March 4 panel includes complimentary cocktails by Belvedere Rye and a Kendra Scott Pop-Up Bar. The Living Room Bar at W Hotel, West L.A., 930 Hilgard Ave., Westwood; Wed., March 4, 7 p.m.; free. RSVP: wlosangeleswss.eventbrite.com/. (Second event takes place at The Loft at W Hotel Hollywood, 6250 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Mon., March 16, 7 p.m.; free. RSVP: whatshesaid2020.eventbrite.com/ ).
Known for her fearless activism, actress Jane Fonda will be honored by the L.A. women’s empowerment group Visionary Women, at a public event sponsored by designers and philanthropists Maurice and Paul Marciano. Featuring performances by the Debbie Allen Dance Troupe, live DJ music, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, proceeds will go to the Los Angeles’ Downtown Women’s Center. The event will also launch the first annual Chara Schreyer Arts Initiative with the intention to foster women’s expression through art and social issues. Studio at Beverly Hills, 407 North Maple Drive, Beverly Hills; Thu., March 5, 7-11 p.m.; $50-$70. visionarywomen.com/events/.
To celebrate International Women’s Day and the premiere issue of the Keds Hand-Book for Women, Keds brand is sponsoring a panel talk called Made for Women, Whatever that Means, bringing together several women journalists, poets and writers for a moderated discussion. The AllBright, 8472 Melrose Place, West Hollywood; Thu., March 5, 6-8 p.m.; free. RSVP to RSVP@ledecompany.com. More info here.
Focusing on family, finance and entrepreneurship, Women Dominating the Decade is an empowerment workshop organized for International Women’s Day to inspire women to become stronger in their financial and professional choices. Along with light refreshments and raffle prizes, motivational guest speakers will include Olympic track and field 2004 gold medalist Joanna Hayes. 18425 Burbank Blvd., Penthouse Ste. 706, Tarzana; Thu., March 5, 6:30-9:30 p.m.; free. Registration: eventbrite.com/e/celebrating-womens-international-day-women-dominating-the-decade-tickets-95909775721.
Commemorating 100 years of the 19th Amendment and the American woman’s right to vote, All Is Possible: Women’s Suffrage in California at the Santa Monica History Museum opens just in time for International Women’s Day. Exploring our city and state’s role in the national suffrage movement, the exhibit was inspired by a quote from L.A. activist Caroline Severance (1820-1914), “Nothing is impossible for organized womanhood.” Artifacts, photos and letters regarding women’s suffrage will be displayed, along with replicas of banners, ribbons and sashes. Santa Monica History Museum, 1350 7th St., Santa Monica; opening celebration Thu., March 5, 6-8 p.m.; runs March 7 to June 16; $5-$10. santamonicahistory.org/all-is-possible-womens- suffrage-in-califronia/
Wellness is a perfect way to celebrate International Woman’s Day and POPSUGAR’s Grounded event aims to do just that, offering fitness villages and showcasing the latest exercise trends and health workshops. Activities throughout the day will include electric workouts, self-care gatherings and panel discussions exploring self-care and body goals. Tone It Up’s Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott headline the event’s “Body Garage” (fitness studio) with high energy classes and other fitness experts are scheduled to lead instruction as well. Shopping, snacks and socializing round out the day. Goya Studios, 1541 N. Cahuenga Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., March 7, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; tickets at popsugargrounded.com.
Wear your red wardrobe to the International Women’s Strike Los Angeles and stand in awe of iconic 90-year-old civil rights activist and labor leader Dolores Huerta, who partnered with Cesar Chavez in 1962 to found the National Farmworkers Association. Huerta will take the stage to give out Women Warrior Awards to deserving humanitarians. This outdoor rally brings together live music, art and performance pieces to call for a national women’s strike on March 9 for awareness to the plight of women worldwide. 800 W. Martin Luther King Blvd. (MLK & Hoover), Vermont Square; Sat., March 7, noon-4 p.m.; free. eventbrite.com/e/international-womens-day-los-angeles-tickets-96382810581
International Women’s Day at Mercado La Paloma, sponsored by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and the Department of Arts and Culture, takes place outdoors and features live music, spoken word and a poster exhibition highlighting women’s topics. A string quartet and choir will perform along with performance pieces by multimedia artist and community activist Sandy Navarro. Mercado La Paloma, 3655 S. Grand Ave., downtown; Sun., March 8, noon-2 p.m.; free. mercadolapaloma.com/events.
WiSTEM L.A. was created by Mayor Eric Garcetti to insure that Los Angeles women are presented with opportunities in the cutting edge technology and engineering fields. Now in its second year, the WiSTEM L.A. mentorship program helps to open doors for women in tech through education and building a networking system. The International Women’s Day 2020 and Beyond: WiSTEM L.A. Panel Discussion brings together highly regarded women from L.A.’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) careers in three panel discussions: Community and Women in STEM, Higher Education & Women in STEM, and Leadership & Women in STEM. Lunch will be provided to all guests. Annenberg Community Beach House, 415 Pacific Coast Highway, Santa Monica; Sun., March 8, 9:30 a.m.- 3 p.m.; free with advance registration. community.anitab.org/event/anitab-org-la-and-wistem- international-womens-day-event.
An all-female lineup is promised in Venice on International Women’s Day as part of Sofar Sounds Celebrates Women Musicians event taking place in 24 American cities and many other countries worldwide. A Sofar event is kind of like a small house party and generally features three eclectic musical acts, held at a secret venue announced the day before the show. Performers are also shrouded in secrecy, so there is always the chance that a well-known singer or group might show up to play for the small crowd. Sofar also encourages ticket-holders to bring their own refreshments, making this an intriguing and fairly inexpensive afternoon celebrating women in music. A secret location in Venice to be announced prior to event. Sun., March 8, 2-4:30 p.m.; $18. sofarsounds.com/cities/la/events/33364.
Celebrate International Women’s Day with Girls Goat Together Chef Collaboration, featuring a four-course feast prepared by three women celebrity chefs, Antonia Lofaso (Dama), Brooke Williamson (Playa Provisions) and Stephanie Izard (opening Girl & the Goat), all of whom successfully competed on the reality TV show Top Chef. Along with a remarkable dinner, the evening includes wine pairings, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. Dama, 612 E. 11th St., downtown; Sun., March 8, 6:30 p.m.; $135+ tax and tip. resy.com/cities/la/dama?date=2020-03-08&seats=2
The Feminine Now Exhibit by Amber Vittoria at Hotel Figueroa A full year of highlighting local independent female artists kicks off at Hotel Figueroa just in time for International Women’s Day. With a new exhibit premiering each quarter at the historic hotel — which fittingly was first opened in 1926 by the YMCA as an all women’s hostelry — the debut installation will be The Feminine Now, consisting of 14 original works by painter Amber Vittoria. Each exhibit promises relevant art and special event programming. Hotel Figueroa, 939 S. Figueroa St., downtown; through April 1.; free. s6.co/hotelfigueria.
Honoring International Women’s Day by focusing on Latin American women and their roles in activism, art and literature, Long’s Beach’s Museum of Latin American Art has arranged a full day of activities to celebrate feminism in all of its forms. Besides art, the event’s schedule includes poetry, a lecture on Latin American Women Writers & Feminism, a dramatized reading from a play, a panel discussion on Women, Art & Activism and an interactive wall where all attendees can comment on the changing roles of woman. Museum Of Latin American Art, 628 Alamitos Ave., Long Beach; 12:30-4:30 p.m.; free. molaa.org.