What's Happening This Week: October 18, 2021

Los Angeles Greater Area

Diabolical dozen Halloween haunts

Forget those amateur scare fests of childhood. (Peeled grape “eyeballs” in the dark? Please.) You’re in Hollywood now, where the top Halloween productions are vast and terrifying works of art. From Knott’s Scary Farm to Zombie Joe’s, the undead here aren’t playing around.


Academy Museum opens with Japanese animation master

My Neighbor Totoro. Princess Mononoke. Spirited Away. Just a few of the many worlds born in the mind of auteur/philosopher Hayao Miyazaki. Now an immersive retrospective of his works for Studio Ghibli and more is inaugurating the Academy Museum. Much of this enchanting exhibition is on view for the first time outside Tokyo.

Courtesy of Academy Museum

SoCal’s prettiest scenic drives

You so need to get out of the house. And preferably out of the city. Time for a long ramble on the picturesque side. From rural mountain routes and ocean sweeps to country vistas and scenic overlooks, every one is deeply renewing and as close as your car keys.

Monarchs: just passing through

Monarch butterflies have always been part of the 87-acre South Coast Botanic Garden. Starting this month, they also star in a glorious exhibit at its new Butterfly Pavilion. Learn the fascinating tale of why, how and where they travel …. and find out how you can help repopulate their dwindling population.

San Francisco Bay Area

Halloween treats for adults

From an Old Fashioned with Mexican maize to a “Count Chocula”-inspired vodka concoction, Bay Area bartenders are getting into the Halloween spirit this year with special seasonal cocktails. Check out these five drinks available in San Francisco and Oakland that kick off the holiday time of year by incorporating ingredients such as maple, turmeric, chocolate milk, roasted corn, and more. Salúd!  

Courtesy of Calavera

A legendary culinary destination turns 50

Unfortunately, Berkeley’s slow food trailblazer Chez Panisse will not be reopening this fall as originally planned. While the launch has been delayed until at least next year, you can reminisce on 50 years of fresh, seasonal, and delicious meals via this compilation of San Francisco Chronicle readers’ favorite memories of dining at Alice Water’s iconic eatery on its Golden Anniversary. 

Courtesy of Chez Panisse

Bjork gets dramatic in S.F.

This promises to be … interesting. Famously experimental Icelandic pop star Bjork is bringing “Cornucopia,” her debut theatrical production, to San Francisco early next year. Co-directed by Bjork, the multimedia show will be staged at the city’s Chase Center on Feb. 5 and 8 as part of a limited run of shows that will also include events in Los Angeles and the singer’s hometown of Reykjavík. 

Photo: Santiago Felipe

Celebrate San Jose’s San Pedro market

It was one of the Bay Area first urban food halls and two decades on it remains one of the region’s most popular. In honor of San Pedro Square Market’s 20th anniversary, Eater put together a list of the eight best things to eat and drink at this enduring San Jose destination, including California-style crepes, real-deal Peruvian eats, Nepalese momos, a Tokyo-inspired espresso drink, and more.  

San Pedro Square Market