Opening Day THE LEGO® MOVIE™ WORLD

My friends at LEGOLAND California in Carlsbad, CA invited me to come experience their new rides, attractions, restaurants, shops, in the new immersive world of THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD. The creative team has their hit movies come to life!

After a stressful week, it was so much fun to be a kid again, starting at an evening reception at SeaLife Aquarium. I watched jellyfish gracefully float in a clear tank, and walked through a clear tunnel to admire a variety of fish, sharks and rays glide by. One of my favorite exhibits was the bioluminescent tide and starry night in the Maldives.

Sipping wine and nibbling pulled pork sandwiches, Mac and Cheese, vegetable crudite and fresh baked cookies and vanilla ice cream, I enjoyed talking to Head of Public Relations North America at Merlin Entertainments, Julie Estrada tell me about the new LEGOLAND New York opening soon. Another familiar face was Senior Media Relations at Merlin Entertainments Group, Jake Gonzalez. He shared his excitement of the events that were going to take place the following day for the Grand Opening to the media in the morning and to the public in the afternoon.

Listening to LEGOLAND California Resort President Kurt Stocks share how the new The LEGO MOVIE WORLD is based on the blockbuster films The LEGO Movie and The LEGO Movie 2, piqued my interest even more.

We talked about how the unveiling of this new large land at the theme park, was put on hold in 2020, due to the pandemic. Finally the grand opening was happening on May 27, 2021. “THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD truly has something for everyone, and we are excited to welcome more guests to experience this new land which takes them from theater to theme park. It will play a key part in boosting tourism locally in Carlsbad and across Southern California,” shared Stocks. 

Pink and gold streamers filled the air, as the official Grand Opening took place in The LEGO MOVIE World. The colorful land is the largest addition in the Park’s history, and features six interactive attractions, including Emmet’s Flying Adventure Ride.

Families buckle in aboard Emmet’s triple decker flying couch for a thrill-seeking adventure. The couch swivels to a full-dome virtual screen, and soon guests fill the misty vapor of flying through clouds to memorable lands such as Middle Zealand, Cloud Cuckoo Land, Pirates Cove and the Sistar System.

The Grand Opening celebration at LEGOLAND California

Fans will recognize familiar faces along the way including Sweet Mayhem, a star character from THE LEGO®MOVIE 2: The Second Part. Emmet’s Flying Adventure features cutting edge technology offering a multi-sensory experience. Feel the rush of falling from Unikitty’s Disco Drop and experiencing the many personalities of the fearless feline. The new ride drops, spins and bounces guests back down to earth with pleasing smells, thrills and lot’s of fun. 

Mayor of Bricksburg with the President of LEGOLAND California Kurt Stocks

The adventure continues after the ride as young guests can climb and explore Benny’s Playship, ride Queen Watevra’s pink Carousel, create at Build Watevra You Wa’Na Build zone, and meet Emmet and all his friends in Emmet’s Super Suite.

This special area is geared for families with children between the ages of 2 and 12. Throughout LEGOLAND California, there are more than 60 rides for all ages and entertaining shows.

Fun rides for the entire family at LEGO MOVIE WORLD

Enjoy tasty themed treats such as Cloud Cuckoo Crepes, Benny’s Rocket Fuel and Everything is Ramen throughout the land. 

Afterwards go ride the newer LEGO® City: Deep Sea Adventure submarine ride. Guests step inside and look out porthole windows to experience more than 2,000 real sea animals, sharks, rays and tropical fish living and swimming in the water.

SEA LIFE aquarium is home to more than 5,000 living creatures and incorporates play zones, informative fun facts and interactive quiz trails.

Other water adventures include LEGOLAND Water Park featuring more than seven slides, sandy beaches and the unique Build-A-Raft River plus Pirate Reef and LEGO Legends of CHIMA Water Park comprising 10 acres of water fun!

Extend your stay at LEGOLAND HOTEL or LEGOLAND Castle Hotel

LEGOLAND Hotel is the nation’s first LEGOLAND Hotel featuring 250 all themed rooms, with either a pirate, adventure, kingdom, LEGO® Friends and LEGO® NINJAGO™ decorated large family guest rooms.

North America’s first LEGOLAND Castle Hotel features Royal Princess, Knights, Magic Wizards and Dragons in their 250 rooms. There are restaurants, swimming pools and interactive activities for the entire family at both hotels. 

For more information, visit http://www.LEGOLAND.com or call (760) 918-LEGO (5346).THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD is included in the price of admission to LEGOLAND California Resort. Guests can purchase tickets and reserve their spot through LEGOLAND California’s reservation system for their desired Park visit.

For more Resort information, operating schedule and to make reservations, visit: www.legoland.com/california

The Cassara Carlsbad above The Flower Fields, LEGOLAND & SEA LIFE Aquarium

Last year at this time, The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch had to close and lock it’s entrance gate due to the pandemic. It was one of the only times in over sixty years, that the public couldn’t walk next to rows of blooming colorful Giant Tecolote Ranunculus flowers. This annual event lasts for only six to eight weeks, usually starting in early March through early May.

Wear a face mask

Located in North San Diego County, a region with a history of growing flowers going back to the 1940’s, stay overnight at The Cassara Carlsbad, Tapestry Collection by Hilton. Guests can purchase admission tickets to be one of the first visiting The Flower Fields to admire acres of rainbow colored ranunculus flowers in the morning or before sunset.

Situated on 12 acres above the super bloom of bright colors, The Cassara is the only hotel in Carlsbad that offers the most spectacular view of The Flower Fields from its guest rooms, grand pool area and grounds.

See the flowers, LEGOLAND and SEA LIFE Aquarium in Carlsbad

The hotel is also across the street is LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium. The Cassarra offers a private pedestrian entrance into the family amusement parks. Families enjoy the spacious Family Karlsbad 576 sq. ft., well designed two-room suites. There is a sitting area with couch and 42-inch TV, near a King bed with luxury linens and another 42-inch TV, armoire, and work desk area. Near the entrance is a bedroom with two twin beds and another 42-inch TV.

Suites offer a king bed and separate bedroom with twin beds

The floor to ceiling sliding glass window offers lots of natural light, views of the fields and fresh coastal air with the Pacific Ocean beyond. Guests can sit outside with their morning coffee, work on their laptop, or watch the sunset. The oversized bathroom boasts a granite vanity counter top and sink, premium bathroom amenities, hair dryer, and separate powder room with combo bath/shower.

Relax by the heated pool or fire pit areas

Amenities at the property include two resort size pools, a family splash pad, and fitness center. Paved walking pathways around the resort provide views of the city, Flower Fields and ocean.

Take an antique tractor ride

Wake up and take a tractor driven wagon ride to learn about The Flower Fields. Walk into the 1500 square foot greenhouse filled with world famous Ecke poinsettias, the sweet pea maze, Santa’s playground, an orchid greenhouse, and many themed areas, including a whimsical face mask garden.  Picnic tables are on site and parking is free.

Photo spots are private at The Flower Fields

Go to the Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch for the 2021 Season: March 1 through May 9. The hours are from 9 am-6 pm daily.
Prices: $20.00 for Adults, $18.00 for Seniors 60+, $10.00 for Children ages 3 – 10,
Children ages 2 and under are Free.
Season Passes: $42.00 for Adults, $38.00 Seniors 60+,
$22.00 for Children ages 3 – 10.
Wagon Tour: $6.00 for Adults,
$3.00 for Children ages 3 – 10

All visitors must have a pre-purchased ticket available online only! No onsite tickets will be sold.

This article was featured in JustLuxe and Luxe Beat Magazine

Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort reopens

The largest Hilton in the world and Hawaii’s largest resort – Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki reopened on Dec. 15, 2020. Situated on 22 oceanfront acres of Waikiki’s widest stretch of beach, the grand reopening was a celebration. There was a Hawaiian blessing held with Hilton Hawaiian Village staff and tenants, and the first guest group to check-in received a complimentary upgrade to the Niumalu Suite in the Rainbow Tower, a gift bag and beautiful lei. Click here for current specials.

Photo Courtesy of Hilton Hawaiian Village

“We have looked forward to this day for a long time, and our team has worked tirelessly to make our reopening possible,” said Debi Bishop, managing director of the property. “Our guests and Team Members will find that we have created a resort experience that prioritizes safety while retaining the warm Aloha spirit that our islands are known for.”

Photo by Hilton Hawaiian Village

In addition to its prime location on Waikiki Beach, 5 pools, waterfalls and one of the best water slides, the world-class Mandara Spa reopened for treatments. The Waikiki Beach Activities beach concession reopened for guests to enjoy outdoor activities on the ocean or the saltwater lagoon.

Both guests and team members feel safer with the ultimate Hilton CleanStay hospitality cleaning protocols. To ensure the safety of guests and employees, Hilton CleanStay with Lysol protection delivers an industry-leading standard of cleanliness and disinfection in Hilton properties across the world.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

Hilton Hawaiian Village guests will notice the resort is cleaner and safer to stay in from check-in to check-out. Standards for Hilton CleanStay include a Hilton CleanStay Room Seal to indicate that a room has not been accessed since being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, flexible housekeeping options, and more.

Hilton EventReady with CleanStay provides curated solutions with creative food and beverage, thoughtful technology resources, elevated standards and practices with redesigned spaces for physical distancing, and reimagined ways to meet and gather to create a safe and comfortable environment for event planners and their attendees.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

All transpacific travelers who desire to bypass Hawaii’s 14-day travel quarantine are required to participate in the Safe Travels Hawaii program by furnishing a negative COVID-19 test result from one of the state’s Trusted Testing and Travel Partners 72 hours prior to departure. Travelers must have the negative result in hand prior to going through airport security. This pre- travel test is part of a multilayered screening process that also includes the mandatory State of Hawaii Travel and Health Form, and temperature screening at all Hawaii airports upon arrival. For more information visit HawaiiCOVID19.

Holiday Bite LA Drive-Thru

I brought my teenage daughter with me last Sunday to The Bite LA: Winter Holiday. It’s a drive-thru experience around Legg Lake at the spacious Whittier Narrows Recreation Area (about 20 minutes downtown LA).
We excitedly saw holiday lights and igloos in the distance reflected in one of the lakes, while following the direction signs to play, eat and enjoy the merry decorations.

Our first stop was to check in and receive a menu of ‘Naughty, Nice and Vegan/Gluten Free Bites. Think popcorn balls, holiday cookies and chocolate and caramel dipped pretzel sticks.

With a pen in hand, we put a number next to the item we wanted to taste for a total of 8 bites per person. Since we had 3 people in out car, we selected 24 bites.

Next we stopped at an igloo to receive nylon bags filled with soft fluffy “sno-balls” with instructions to throw them at dancing snowman and penguins. Some had a really good arm, and were able to throw some back right into our open window.

Our daughter thought this was great fun! We drove over a narrow bridge to Winkle-land, a Holiday Gnome Village filled with psychedelic dancing mushrooms
This Covid-safe outdoor activity is from Meyer2Meyer Entertainment, the creators of The Bite LA: Halloween Food Crawl. They put a seasonal twist on this drive-thru experience offering  immersive Winter Holiday fun appropriate for kids and adults alike!  

Next stop to pick up complimentary stockings to fill with all the goodies. They come in glittery red, green and gold.

​The most fun is stopping at each village and picking up our goodies. One stop is Father Christmas, another a prancing reindeer, a beautiful ornament and Jack Frost. The costumes are exquisite and each character has an engaging personality.

With stockings filled with treats, we finished at a beverage stand and were handed hot cocoa and hot apple cider. Next we drove to a drive-in movie setup and parked. Looking over all our bites, we tasted a few, sipped our warm beverages and watched a 20 minute film with Santa onstage entertaining passengers sitting safely in their cars.

EVENT ADDRESS: Legg Lake, 751 Santa Anita Ave, South El Monte 91733. Tickets start at $38 per person.

Dazzling Dodgers Holiday Festival

Celebrate the holidays at Dodger Stadium with lights, music and surprise appearances throughout the evening. Nightly the stadium is celebrating LA’s World Series winners.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

The drive-thru event runs through Christmas Eve from 5 to 10 p.m. Admission starts at $55 to $100+ per vehicle. The ticket cost is determined by the time and day of the timed ticket.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

Ticket holders can bring new or gently-used baseball of softball equipment to benefit Dodgers RBI. The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation is also requesting pairs of new socks to give to LA Family Housing, and a new toy for RaiseAChild. Donations are optional and must be unwrapped. A Dodgers elf is near the donation bin near the entrance gates at Stadium Way Downtown Gate E.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

Dodger fans will enjoy seeing images of their favorite players, championship trophy, ring and memorabilia. There is a waving bobblehead, replica of Elton John wearing a sparkling Dodgers uniform while playing the piano, and colorful lights synchronized to holiday music.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

The speed limit is under 5 miles an hour. Try to arrive 30 minutes before your ticket time. Guests are not allowed to exit their vehicle and must wear a mask when their car windows are down. There are no public restrooms available.

Courtesy of Dodgers Holiday Festival

Bring your own picnic dinner and non alcoholic beverage, as there is no food or drinks available at this venue.

Photo by Jill Weinlein

For all event details and guidelines please visit Dodgers.com/holidayfestivalor email holidayfestival@dodgers.com.

Holidays In Your Car in Ventura

Last Sunday, I drove through CBF Productions Holidays In Your Car at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. We lined up at sunset and waited until the the front car was allowed entrance at 5:30 p.m., then we followed behind for an immersive holiday show.

The Holiday Lights Spectacular runs from November 22 – January 2. Vehicles headlights are turned off, as couples and families drive through a sparkling mile-and-a-half display of over one million dazzling LED lights, accompanied by uplifting holiday music from radio station 96.9 tuned into each car radio.  

Along the route, cars enter into some of the Ventura Fairgrounds event buildings to see holiday-inspired holograms of Frosty and Santa, red and green laser light shows and impressive multi-colored projections casting festive images of the season.

There are two evenings where those in cars will get an extra special show. On Saturday, December 12, Holidays in Your Car is offering an outdoor live performance of The Nutcracker. This holiday classic will be performed by the Ventura County Ballet, with both world-class professional dancers and local talent.  The lead roles will be performed by Elizaveta “Leeza” Domrachev of Ballet Academy Ventura, who has danced with Russia’s prestigious Perm State Ballet, and Jack Stewart, who has danced globally with State Street Ballet.  They will be joined by a number of other professional dancers and 50 highly talented local dance students.

This is one of only a handful of outdoor Nutcrackers performed in the U.S. this year. The two performances are scheduled at 5pm and 8pm, at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. Ticket prices start at $99.00 per car.

The Santa Saves Christmas live show is on Saturday, Dec. 19. It’s produced by the creators behind Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer:  The Musical and The Price is Right Live, and is full of holiday cheer, snowy surprises and dazzling performers.  There will be two performances scheduled, one at sunset at 4:30 and the other at 7:30 pm.

For full “Holidays In Your Car” event information and to purchase tickets, please visit https://www.concertsinyourcar.com/ventura.

Covid-safe Haunt’oween LA 2020

Now at Warner Center through October 31, 2020

Experiential Supply presents Haunt’oween LA, a family-friendly drive-thru experience open nightly in Woodland Hills at The Promenade Mall parking lot.

Highlights include driving through a pumpkin tunnel of lights and a tunnel of shadows. The Jack-O-Lantern Tunnel is a 90-foot installation featuring more than 1,000 pumpkins.

Live music performing nightly.

Scenic Paths decorated to drive by and enjoy traditional Halloween decor along a mini-maze route, to see skeletons at play, giant pumpkins, headless horsemen, and numerous spider webs.

Each car receives one good size pumpkin from the “Life is Gourd” themed patch. Additional pumpkins are available for purchase.

“Door to Door” Trick or Treating – drive down two streets with live costumed actors coming out of their “homes” with enough candy for everyone.

Pricing is $70 per car, tickets on sale at the Haunt’oween website.

6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills 91367

Catalina Island Getaway 2020

Looking to get a little fresh air, after two weeks of being cooped up inside (due to the global pandemic and hazardous air quality from the California wildfires), we booked a cruise onboard Catalina Express’ Cat Express from San Pedro to Two Harbors at Catalina Island.

The 300 passenger double hull boat, only allows about 40% of capacity onboard, as a safety precaution due to the global pandemic. Passengers must wear a mask at all times.

It’s just a little over one hour boat ride to Catalina Island’s west end, known also as the Isthmus. The rustic town offers one hotel – the Banning House built in 1910. It was a summer house for the Banning Brothers, who owned the Santa Catalina Island before chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr., purchased the Santa Catalina Island Company and the Island from them in 1919. Guests look out to the Isthmus Harbor and Catalina Harbor from the main house, and two villas (Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz).

There is one general store that sells camping provisions, hand sanitizer, snacks, drinks and souvenirs. There are multiple camp grounds on the island, and many hikers and campers enjoy exploring the 37.2-mile Trans Catalina Trail from one site to another.

At the base of the pier is a dive shop to rent a locker for the day for under $3.50. You receive a tiny key for a tiny lock to keep your valuables safe and dry, while you swim, snorkel, hike, kayak, paddle board and enjoy the Harbor Reef and Harbor Sands Restaurant.

During the pandemic, Two Harbors has gained popularity for day-trippers and outdoor enthusiasts, because there is plenty of space for social distancing. 

Before lunch, we took a hike from the Isthmus to Catalina Island Harbor along a paved dirt path along the half-mile wide Isthmus. Along the way we stopped to take in the beautiful views of two bays.

Stories have been told about how Spanish explorers named the island, Santa Catalina Island to honor Saint Catherine. Pirates arrived on the island to store smuggled treasures in the nearby coves and fur traders used to visit and sell their products.

Working up an appetite, we took our shoes off to wiggle our toes in the sand at Harbor Sands Restaurant. Known for its coconut milk cocktail, stuffed quesadillas, salads, burgers and golden brownie dessert, visitors can sit at a beach front table or reserve a private cabana for up to $150 a day with a bucket of waters and food service, or $30 for two lounge chairs, umbrella and towels on soft imported sand.

Next we rented a double kayak and paddled in crystal clear water, near sandy beaches, caves and nearby coves, before jumping into the refreshing sea water to cool off.

Drying off, we returned the kayak, retrieved our packs from the locker, and boarded the open air Cyclone boat for a 40 minute cruise. Cruising near the coastline by Rippers Cove, Long Point, Toyon Bay, YMCA’s Camp Fox, and Willow Cove before arriving to scenic Avalon with a Mediterranean vibe.

The newest hotel in Avalon is the Bellanca Hotel, from the Eat, Drink, Sleep Hospitality Group. This renovated (former Portifino Hotel) harbor front property, features 40 rooms with brand four new spacious guestrooms.

The open-air, ocean view, rooftop deck is available to guests to relax and enjoy drinks and meal throughout the day. We purchased a half-bottle of rose’ and a charcuterie board from the onsite bar to take up to the rooftop to enjoy the sunset.

Staying in the brand new room #109, the comfortable king size mattress enhanced a good night’s sleep. The sliding door leads out to a street level patio. Stepping outside we looked to the right for a slice of the Avalon harbor view.

The extra large tiled shower has a peek-a-boo window looking into the room. Other amenities include a large flat screen television, mini refrigerator, and multiple charging outlets, however I could not find a safe to store our valuables.

Bellanca Hotel offers complimentary beach cruisers, beach towels and beach chairs for guests to use while sitting by the water or going for a swim.

The onsite restaurant – the Naughty Fox, has Executive Chef Russell Hayden preparing elevated beach favorites such as ahi poke nachos, lobster sushi roll, grilled fish tacos, and a tasty seafood cioppino with crunchy grilled bread. Food and beverage Manager Jose from Eat. Drink. Sleep, made sure every guest was taken care of and enjoyed their culinary experience. 

Right now the hotel is not offering breakfast due to COVID-19, hopefully they will later. Each employee is temperature scanned at the front of the hotel before entering to work. Masks are mandatory to wear in the lobby and while walking to your room and rooftop. It may be removed once you order and your drink and meal has arrived.

For a change of pace for the COVID weary, a boat ride to Catalina Island is a welcome change of scenery. (Next week read my review of 10 hotspots to see when renting a golf cart, riding a bicycle or walking around Avalon).

The Bellanca Hotel is located at 111 Crescent Ave, Avalon, CA 90704 | (310) 510-0555 | http://www.bellancahotel.com.

Bricktacular LEGOLAND CALIFORNIA RESORT Opens Oct. 2

Bring the family in costume, for a new Bricktacular fun with treats a LEGOLAND California in Carlsbad.

While the theme park is still awaiting approval to open, it has opened its outdoor Miniland every Friday, Saturday and Sunday during October (Oct. 2-4, 9-11, 16-18, 23-25, 30 & 31). Reservations are required with a purchased ticket for Fridays from 3 to 7 p.m., Saturday from 10am-2pm or 3pm-7pm, and Sunday on 11am-3pm.

The Park’s Miniland U.S.A  isn’t too spooky for little one’s to enjoy Halloween activities, tasty treats such as savory food options at Smoke House BBQ and NINJA Kitchen and satisfy sweet Granny’s Apple Fries.

Halloween in Miniland features character meet and greets, virtual costume contests, a Miniland scavenger hunt, LEGO building activities, and, of course, a goody bag filled with candy and a LEGO surprise!

Stroll through The Big Shop to find the latest must-have LEGO sets. 

LEGOLAND® Hotel and LEGOLAND® Castle Hotel will also join in on the Halloween fun with festive décor throughout the fall season! Guests visiting SEA LIFE® aquarium will be treated to special Halloween decorations and LEGO models that will be on display underwater in the aquarium’s tanks.

Purchase a ticket to Halloween in Miniland online for tickets starting at $12.99. Guests are required to purchase tickets online in advance to reserve access to Miniland for their desired dates and time to visit.

As guests and employees’ health and safety remain the top priority at LEGOLAND California Resort, guests will experience some differences in Miniland including reduced capacity, cashless payments, social distancing practices and enhanced cleaning regimes. Face coverings (PPE) are required for all guests three years old and up as well as for staff members. 

For more safety information, and to purchase tickets to Halloween at Miniland or SEA LIFE aquarium, visit www.legoland.com/california.

14 Easter Festivities & Meals #SaferAtHome

1.LEGOLAND Since egg hunts around the world have been canceled due to COVID-19,   LEGOLAND® California Resort in Carlsbad has kept the time-honored springtime traditions alive by creating different LEGO® scenes on the White House lawn in its own LEGO version of Washington, D.C. The Park’s Master Model Builders had a little fun of their own using LEGO® models to create fun, silly and entertaining scenes on the infamous lawn. Minilanders are collecting eggs from the Secret Service, chicks defending their giant colorful egg, and a bunny rolling an egg that breaks open as children rejoice.  The scenes can be found online at LEGOLAND California Resort’s #LLCBuildingChallenge site where kids are challenged to build, design and create their own springtime scenes. 

The #LLCBuildingChallenge site is filled with instructional videos and activities that promote learning, creating and play.  All activities on the site are free and available for everyone to enjoy.  For more information: https://www.legoland.com/llcbuildingchallenge/.

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2. InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown is offering an Easter Takeout Menu this Sunday, April 12, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Menu highlights include Strawberry Kale Salad, Brown Sugar Glazed Ham Steak, Woodland Mushroom, and Kale Ravioli, and Carrot Cake. Additionally, complimentary VIP access to the tallest open-air bar on the Western Hemisphere, Spire 73, will be provided throughout 2020 to those who spend $200 or more.

3. Patina Easter takeaway – Enjoy Patina’s culinary delights this Easter starting with classic deviled eggs and Farmers Market crudités with green goddess dressing. Choose either maple glazed ham or herb roasted leg of lamb. Receive fresh from the oven Parker House rolls with Vermont butter and house preserves. Accompaniments include Yukon potato gratin; spring asparagus and honey with thyme roasted carrots. Finish with a decadent carrot cake with cream cheese icing. Keep your children busy on Easter with a DIY cookie decorating kit and Easter basket. Orders are available for pick up at Ray’s + Stark Bar and Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse. Pick up is available on Saturday, April 11 or Sunday, April 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Easter by Patina costs $120 serving four people, and $190 for 8 people. Easter Baskets are $40 and filled with Chef Frania’s handmade confections and candies, including passion fruit marshmallows, Easter candies, chocolate Robin eggs and a chocolate bunny. The DIY cookies kit comes with 12 vanilla sugar cookies shaped as eggs, chicks, rabbits and flowers. Also included are assorted vanilla icings in a variety of colors, assorted sprinkles and edible glitter for $25. Celebration vanilla cheesecakes and pies are $25 each. Email ctulfo@patinagroup.com with questions. Patina’s Easter feast is conveniently packaged and available for curbside pick-up at Ray’s + Stark Bar 5905 Wilshire Blvd., (323)857-6180 and 330 S. Hope St., (213)680-0330.

4. Easter Sunday meals to-go at The  London West Hollywood at Beverly Hills. The menu features festive spring dishes tailored for two to four people for $80. Receive baked ham with brown sugar and a mustard glaze, local farmed baby beets, rainbow carrots, scalloped potato gratin, buttered green asparagus, tender lettuces greens with lemon-mustard vinaigrette, carrot cake cupcake and Hot Cross Buns.Advanced orders can be placed by emailing: boxwoodhost@thelondonweho.com.IMG_6625-25. Farmers Market LA has all the Easter brunch ingredients you need. Pick up fresh bread, pastries of carrot cake at Michelina Artisan Boulanger. Order your spiral ham for pick-up or delivery from Huntington Meats & Sausage or Marconda’s Meats. Pick up gourmet chocolates at Littlejohn’s English Toffee and “Chillin’ With My Peeps” Shake from Dylan’s Candy Bar.

6. Food For Love is delivering Passover & Easter family meals that includes a Heirloom Spring crudite board with house made Ranch, Deviled Eggs with smoked bacon & Greek yogurt and roasted asparagus, tomato & goat cheese quiche. Select a classic Caesar Salad with housemade Caesar Dressing)or Asparagus Salad with arugula, shaved zucchini, watermelon radish & organic quinoa with mint basil vinaigrette. Main Entrees include slow poached salmon with a lemon dill beurre blanc; herb roasted free-range chicken with roasted shallot gravy; roasted pork shoulder with orange marmalade sauce; tender Burgundy braised beef or black pepper Tofu. There are a variety of sides and desserts, including gluten-free options. Order from family-style Passover and Easter menus available for delivery, pick up and shipping. The holiday family-style dinners serve 4 to 6 people for $175. Go to https://www.foodlovela.com to see the menu offerings.

6. BOA Steakhouse – Enjoy an Easter Sunday celebration at home with a BOA family meal that feeds four featuring signature sides, 8 hour braised Creekstone brisket, and a Easter Fun basket. Call or email to place your order by 4 p.m. this Friday, for curbside pickup available on Saturday. (310)278-2050 or info@boasteak.com.

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7.  Jean Georges Beverly Hills Easter Brunch To-Go – Select a three course meal with a starter of broccoli & kale soft-boiled eggs, croutons and parmesan; avocado and snow pea lettuce cups, sweet chili dressing; or Peekytoe Crab Cake with sugar snap pea remoulade. Entree choices include roasted salmon, green curry, ramps and fennel;

parmesan crusted organic chicken, artichokes, lemon butter and basil; ratatouille of eggplants, zucchinis, bell pepper, tomatoes all cook with aromatic herbs; or Kurobuta Ham braised and glazed with honey. Choose two sides per order such as wild mushrooms, white wine and sage; grilled green asparagus olive oil and lemon or mash potatoes with fresh butter. Finish with a dessert of either chocolate cake with dark chocolate ganache and toasted marshmallow meringue. 9650 Wilshire Blvd. Beverly Hills, (310)860-6566.

8. Madre Torrance/Palms – Easter brunch menu includes mezcal mimosas, champagne bottles and frozé to go in addition to Oaxacan breakfast bowls, omelet’s and Oaxacan family style brunch packs. Madre’s “movers and shakers” old-fashioned with mezcal reposado, tequila reposado, agave, mole bitters, Benèdictine and lime Is now available for $10 for takeout and delivery. Madre is also now offering gift cards for purchase that are good for both locations, on their website. You can order pick-up at Palms location by calling (310) 559-4732 and at Torrance by calling (310) 974-8005, delivery is available at both locations through Chownow, Grubhub, Doordash, Postmates, Caviar, Delivery.com, and UberEats. Takeout/Delivery Hours: 12 to 9 p.m.

IMG_6605-29.Poppy + Rose Downtown LA is now offering spaghetti with meatballs and BBQ family style meals. The spaghetti meal includes 1 pound dry spaghetti pasta, 1 quart marinara sauce, 1 quart meatballs and 4 ounces of parmesan for only $28 and feeds up to 4 people. The BBQ family meal includes Half Rack Ribs Brisket, Choice of two sides, Mac n Cheese, Green Beans and Mixed Greens and also feeds 4 people. You can order ahead by calling (213)-622-0176 or you can order delivery through UberEats and Postmates. Takeout and delivery is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

10. Pasta Sister Easter  – Celebrate Easter the Italian way with the family-owned restaurant and pasta shop, Pasta Sisters. The Culver City location is offering a special bundle with an Italian Easter cake and a bottle of Moscato d’Asti or Prosecco for $45. 3280 Helms Ave., (424)603-4503.

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11. Easter take-out Marie Callender’s – Enjoy classic American dishes and freshly prepared pies for your Easter Sunday feast. The family ham dinner serves four people for $49.99, and includes oven-roasted ham, glaze, mashed potatoes and gravy, vegetables, and a whole pie of your choice. Individual ham dinners are available for $13.99 each and include ham, glaze, mashed potatoes and gravy, cornbread and vegetables. Those looking for an Easter brunch option can enjoy ham, bacon or vegetable  9-inch quiches for $14.79 each. All Easter meals must be pre-ordered over the phone. 11324 National Blvd., (310)478-0347 and other locations.

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12 Nybll Easter at Home is delivered to your door. Executive chef puts plants and lean proteins to work for your body to boost your energy, focus and immunity for “Stealth Health.” Receive roasted rosemary garlic chicken; orange roasted whole salmon; garlic green beans; sweet potatoes + tahini miso; a choice of: kugel or potato gratin; hearty winter kale salad; matzo ball soup or creamy cauliflower soup and a choice of chocolate coconut macaroons or apple tart for $99.

Spring Break LEGOLAND Challenge

As families search for fun, educational activities for their kids to do during their Spring Break, while #SaferatHome during the pandemic, LEGOLAND® California Resort has created an online site that is filled with instructional videos and activities that promote learning, creating and play. Kids and families can access the new fun-filled site called “LEGOLAND Building Challenge”: https://www.legoland.com/llcbuildingchallenge/.

Every Wednesday, the Park will announce a new theme and release a new instructional “how to build” video hosted by a Master Model Builder. On Fridays, LEGOLAND will highlight builds posted by followers on the Resort’s social media sites.

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Photo taken March 2019 for LEGOLAND’S 20th Birthday

The first instructional video on the site featured Master Model Builder PJ Catalano building a birthday cupcake in honor of the Park’s 21st birthday. “So many children are missing out on birthday parties and celebrating their birthday at the Park, so we thought a birthday theme seemed fitting as our inaugural build,” said LEGOLAND California Resort’s General Manager Kurt Stocks. In addition to the builds, the site will feature other activities including coloring pages, trivia, word games and more.

All activities on the LEGOLAND Building Challenge site are free and available for everyone to enjoy. Need some LEGO® to build new creations? Families looking for new LEGO® sets for their kids to build during this time can go online and purchase sets that aren’t usually for sale in the Park’s Big Shop, plus receive free shipping! For more information: https://www.LEGOLAND.com/LEGOretail/.

Free Tinkergarten Class in LA

Recent studies show that kids ages 8 through 12 years old spend 35% to 50% less time outdoors as compared to their parents. They are spending almost five hours a day using screen media, and are being labeled the “indoor nation” generation.

How can parents get their kids outside and play? Some of my favorite outdoor play spots are Descanso Gardens, Griffith Park, The Huntington,  LA Memorial Park and The Arboretum.

Early childhood research shows that time for outdoor play is critical for physical, cognitive, and emotional well-being for everyone. To keep families unplugged and connected – Tinkergarten has a solution. “The research is clear: two hours a week outside is all you need to start seeing wellness and learning benefits,” said TInkergarten co-founder, Meghan Fitzgerald. “We believe in the power of outdoor play; it’s the foundation on which our program is built.”

Starting March 8, Tinkergarten is having a “Spring Forward” Daylight Saving Day, offering over 1,600 complimentary classes across the nation, and continues through March 31, 2020.

Click here for Tinkergarten locations in the greater Los Angeles area.

“It’s important for the development of our children that we balance our indoor time and time with technology,” said co-founder, Brian Fitzgerald. “Spring Forward is the perfect excuse to offer families a chance to take advantage of their extra hour of daylight and experience Tinkergarten.”

Families can find information about free classes in their area at tinkergarten.com/springforward, in addition to tips on how to help their children manage the transition to daylight saving time.

Join the conversation and share experiences and ideas of how you discover fun outdoor play opportunities on Instagram and Twitter tagging @tinkergarten and #springforward. Join the #OutdoorsAll4 Facebook Group to share ideas and celebrate outdoor play all four seasons.

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