SMDP is launching a new weekly feature to highlight goings on in around Santa Monica called Things to Do.

My name is Sean Besser. I am a 20+ year Santa Monica resident, a little too food obsessed, and enjoy being actively involved in our community, including serving as president of the Ocean Park Association and being a committee member for the Santa Monica Travel & Tourism Board.

I am passionate about all the great events and food in our area and am excited to be kicking off this column weekly column dedicated to sharing some of our favorites and things we’re most excited about with you.

In addition to this curated list, we encourage you to check out SMDP calendar that we have created to index all the great happenings in and around the area. If there’s ever something you think is worth highlighting, please reach out directly to me at, and feel free to submit your events to our calendar…it’s free!

Your Memorial Day weekend starts here with the return of MAINopoly on Main St, 626 Night Market Mini in downtown SaMo, and a conversation with award winning author Heather McGhee of “The Sum of Us.”

  1. MAINopoly: Taste of Main Street (Saturday 1pm): The 8th Annual event runs from 1pm – 5pm  with an after party at The Victorian from 5-7pm. More details & tickets here on the “culinary tasting tour and real-life board game adventure all-in-one!”
  2. 626 Night Market Mini Returns (Saturday & Sunday 1-10pm): The downtown SaMo snack around pop-up is back every other weekend this Spring at the corner of Arizona and 5th with three dozen rotating local food pop-ups, curated by the 626 Night Market team, merchandise & craft vendors, and a full bar. More details and FREE tickets here. Video preview here.
  3. A Conversation with Award Winning Author Heather McGhee of “The Sum of Us” (Monday 6–7pm): Join the community discussion of Heather McGhee’s nonfiction book which illustrates how racism is harmful to everyone and makes the argument that we all have an interest in fighting it. Register in advance for this meeting via Zoom.
  4. Jokes, Jazz, & Validation (Friday 8pm): The Crow at Bergamot Station is hosting “a night of sweet jazz and smooth jokes.” More details here.
  5. BTS Exhibition on 3rd St Promenade (Ongoing): This Rolling Stone article has more details on the “Immersive Fan Experience” celebrating the group’s 10th anniversary.
  6. Mothers and Sons – A Play by Terrence McNally (Friday & Saturday 8p; Sunday 2pm): Katharine Gerard, who lost her son to AIDS 20 years ago, pays a surprise visit to the NY apartment of Cal, her late son’s ex-partner. More details here.
  7. FREE Freaky Friday Movie Night on the Lawn @ Jamaica Bay Inn in Marina Del Rey (Sunday 7pm): You can bring your lawn chair or blanket every Sunday throughout the summer. More details here.
  8. FOOD: New “Infatuation Hit List” Includes Isla on Main St and Le Great Outdoor at Bergamot Station: LGO is “an order-at-the-grill dinner spot in the Bergamot Station parking lot where meat, fish, and veggies are cooked right in front of you.” More details here.
  9. Planning Ahead – Pride Weekend: More details here on all the Pride festivities around the city, including the official Pride celebration on Saturday June 3.