Nestled in the historic Rancho Santa Anita?a homestead originally inhabited by the Gabrieleno Tongva tribe?Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden houses wildlife and plants from all over the globe on 127 acres. Its creators opened the Arboretum in 1947 to promote environmental awareness in a sanctuary that reflects the distinct history, flora, and culture of southern California. The grounds reflect the founders' aim?hummingbirds flutter among the colorful blooms in the Grace Kallam Perennial Garden, and wildflowers, herbs, and veggies spring to life at the hands of community volunteers in the educational Garden for All Seasons. Tropical and temperate blossoms embellish the Meyberg waterfall's sun-drenched stone face and blue-gum trees stand guard in front of the Queen Anne cottage, one of several historic sites that was constructed in 1885 to encapsulate Victorian opulence. Peacocks and great egrets strut among living plant collections, which explode into flowery canopies whenever the right garden sprites are available to aid in pollination.
Members often gain exclusive access to the Arboretum's slate of events, which includes workshops, tours, Yoga in the Garden, and live music performances in the summer months. The Arboretum Summer Nights series kicks off with David Correa and Cascada on July 11, followed by Sour Mash Hug Band on July 25, Ooks of Hazzard on August 1, and closes out with Steve Rushingwind on August 8. Summer camps reawaken brains that usually hibernate until September, and Bookworms Story Time captures attention year-round. Members can also take advantage of free tram rides during SpringTopia on May 3?4.
Move playtime out of the sizzling summer heat and into the climate-controlled Little Tykes Playground at Kids Island, where children as old as eight can safely crawl, climb, and explore across a variety of pint-sized equipment. Outside food is allowed in the separate snack room, so come for playtime and stay for a picnic. Likewise, while loading up on snacks, load your children's minds with stories using Kids Island's children's library, or read a story out of Mother Nature's library (the Internet) with the available free Wi-Fi. Playing parents and supervising children are allowed leave and come back during the same day for free.
When Sunny Williamson’s son couldn’t find a satisfactory airsoft facility, his father decided to create one for him. Opened in 2006, Tac City Airsoft has since expanded to two indoor airsoft facilities totaling more than 60,000-square feet. Under the watchful eye of refs, players duke it out in the Fullerton field’s fully enclosed quarters filled with wooden walls and labyrinthine hallways or the semi-outdoor space in El Monte littered with barrels and haystacks. Personnel update the fields every few months to keep repeat guests on their toes as they compete in scenarios such as capture the flag and follow-up games of set the flag free. In lieu of combatting with Tac City Airsoft’s fully automatic M4 rentals, visitors can purchase their own weapons and gear at the pro-shop.
In 2004, four friends who happened to be bowling aficionados lamented the absence of a nearby bowling center. Rather than complain, petition, or stage a protest that involved a cosmic-bowl laser show on the mayor's front yard at 3 a.m., they simply opened their own. Thus Action Lanes was born out of need, but its 32 lanes transcend necessity and border on luxury. To wit, players keep track of each roll on animated scoreboards while jamming to the beat of tunes playing on the sound system. This modern bowling center features all the amenities?a pro shop for gear, a snack bar for eats, and a sports bar to celebrate a win or lament a loss with a drink and a toast. Action Lanes also houses an arcade and separate rooms that can accommodate parties and events.
Blast tactically into a beam-blasting fantasy emitting infrared beams with today's Groupon. You get unlimited laser-tag play at Ultrazone Laser Tag, the largest laser-tag arena in the LA area. All you can play passes at Ultrazone are normally $22 with an extra $5 charge for late-night blasting; although all-day play on Wednesdays and Thursdays is available for $12, use today's deal to spend a weekend hitting your loved ones with painless lasers.In his words, Tad is known for “having the hottest girlfriend in town, driving a 1998 Chevy Cavalier, dressing like the dude from The Matrix way before that movie even came out, and never, ever losing a match.” He’s also the world’s foremost expert on laser-tag strategy, having penned the 2004 bestseller LaserTad’s LaserRad Laser-Tag LaserTactics For Laser-Tag LaserFanatics.
In 1976, Joan Barnes—a Californian mom frustrated with the lack of spaces where she could take her kids for safe and age-appropriate play time—took matters into her own hands and founded Gymboree Play & Music. In the decades since Gymboree’s founding, Joan’s vision of a safe place where youngsters could build confidence and creativity has come to fruition and spread to 30 countries around the globe. Staffed by attentive and expertly trained instructors, each Gymboree outpost adheres to a curriculum of activities designed by experts to foster the development of children’s’ cognitive, physical, and social skills through structured play and close readings of Goodnight Moon. The staffers also conduct entertaining classes that cover subjects ranging from music to sports, imparting valuable lessons of imagination and physical activity to developing minds. To further set apart her business, Barnes employed nationally renowned playground designer Jay Beck to design the proprietary play equipment at her centers.