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It’s February, which means it’s Humpback Whale Appreciation Month in Palm Springs!

Okay, so that’s a bit misleading. Yes, February is Humpback Whale Appreciation Month, but we’re not celebrating this year (we never have). So whales, you’re on your own (but please do live long and prosper.)

What we do have are Modernism Week and two national celebrations: Valentine’s Day and Black History Month. And there’s enough to fill two blogs on the whos, whats, and wheres on those last two, so that’s what we’re going to do.

This blog entry is about you coming to Palm Springs during the month of February and whatever event/holiday/getaway/vacation you’d like to plan during the shortest month of the year.

Side note: Ever wonder why there are 12 months, and some have 30 days, others 31, and poor old February gets a deficit of three? According to “math” and some random dude on Quora: “There are 13 lunations, each with 28 days — that is the moon’s phases around the Earth, but it doesn’t fit exactly in the rotation of the Earth around the sun, which is 365 days, not 364, so calendars have never matched.” Thanks, random dude. No wiser.

Let’s move on to all the things to do in Palm Springs in February 2023, and let’s show some appreciation for the city’s fabulous mascot, Mister Splashy Pants, the humpback whale. (It’s not. But there is a humpback by that name!)

One and done-ish

Feb. 3, 4, and 5: 7th Annual Taste of Jalisco Festival: Cathedral City

Feb. 4: Gregory Douglass, one of our very own bloggers, will be appearing at Palm Springs Cultural Center, joined by some very special guests. $20 (includes your two-drink minimum). Tickets here.

Feb. 5 and 19: Palm Springs Vintage Market. One of the kitschiest and crazy fun retro markets you’ll ever have the delight of shopping. And it’s twice this month! Yay! It’s mostly mid-mod, with everything from clothes to furniture to home furnishings, a.k.a. tchotchkes.

Items for sale at the Palm Springs Vintage Market. Photo by Katy Carrier

Feb. 9-12: Intersect Palm Springs Art and Design Show, Palm Springs Convention Center. An art and design fair that brings together a dynamic mix of modern and contemporary galleries, activated by timely and original programming.

Feb. 15: Different Drum: The Music of Linda Ronstadt, Palm Canyon Theatre. My favorite cabaret performer Francesca Amari sings the story of the life of Linda Ronstadt. I’ve seen this show and it’s terrific! Francesca won the 2022 BroadwayWorld Palm Springs Award for Best Streaming Concert/Cabaret for her Gilda Radner tribute show, and was nominated Vocalist of the Decade by BroadwayWorld Palm Springs in 2020 and Best Jazz Vocalist in the 2020 & 2018 Coachella Valley Music Awards.

Feb. 16-26: Modernism Week. Event tickets.

Feb. 18: Party Gras — New Orleans-inspired celebration on President’s Day weekend at Agua Caliente Palm Springs.

Feb. 18: Desert Woman’s Show & Greater Palm Springs Food and Wine Festival, presented by the Desert Vein and Vascular Institute. Now in its 15th year, the indoor Woman’s Show offers daily fashion shows by local boutiques and shopping. The Greater Palm Springs Food & Wine outdoor event offers a cornucopia of tasty bites, wines, craft beers and spirits from the Valley’s best. Limited free general admission tickets are available courtesy of Desert Care Network (available online at Desert Woman’s Show only) and are valid for one ticket per person. DOES NOT include the food and wine tasting area. Tickets here for the food and adult beverages.

Feb. 25: The L-Fund Gala 10th Anniversary — 5 to 9 p.m. at the Margaritaville Resort. This red carpet event supports cis and trans lesbians in the Coachella Valley.

Feb. 25: Boots on Arenas — Join Bella da Ball and Nancy Sinatra for These Boots are Made for Walkin’, Modernism Week’s penultimate night street party. Wear your big hair and miniskirts and go-go down to Arenas Road to join the party. Details and tickets here. Prize for Best Dressed provided by Nancy’s family. Free, all ages. 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Get those boots on and get ready to party! Photo courtesy of Boots on Arenas

Theater

Feb. 10-26: Scarlet Pimpernel, Palm Canyon Theatre.

Feb. 17-19: South Pacific, RM Amphitheater — Desert Theatricals puts on near-perfect productions of musicals from all eras. Always a great time, with many local entertainers stepping into various roles. Dinner show tickets are available, but go fast. General admission available as well. (Maybe there’ll be a humpback whale!)

Feb.21-March 5: Once at CV Rep. A love story reminding us of how the language of music is universal. Winner of eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Tickets here.

Feb. 21 and 22:  Mid Century Moderns returns to Oscar’s.

PS Underground is a dinner theater, musical hybrid with unique shows and delicious food. Check out their schedule for something completely different.

Fridays from 4:30-7:30 p.m., DJ ModGirl at the Rowan Kimpton lobby bar. Always a good time and a great start to your Friday night.

Clubs with entertainment:

Oscar’s — Home of the T Dance also has name entertainment.

Palm Canyon Cultural Center — List of performers for weekly entertainment. February brings The Mod Squad on Wednesdays, a very fun “audience participation” show with local entertainers Wayne Abravanel, Francesca Amari, and Jeff Stewart.

PS Air Bar calendar — So many fun shows, including in-flight movies.

Cascade Lounge at Agua Caliente Palm Springs — Home of Jazzville and additional music and comedy shows.

Illusions Drag Queen Brunch, Pete’s Hideaway — Saturdays and Sundays

The Purple Room — Rat Pack feel, a variety of entertainers, big names in jazz, cabaret and Broadway on the weekend, and The Judy Show is back!

“The Judy Show” is back! Courtesy of The Purple Room

V Wine Lounge — Very Mad Men with a multitude of seating options in a variety of set pieces, nice sized bar for cross talk, great wine and cocktail selections, and a lot of entertainment options, including karaoke night.

Fridays: Ranch Dance — DJs spin country music for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, and its friends.

Restaurant news

El Patio — I haven’t talked about it before, so I am now. Owned by the same family that gave us local favorites Felipe’s and Salsa Restaurants in DT PS. About a year old, so it’s ready.

Low Desert — Modern Mexican on the south end of Palm Springs. Brand new. Replaces the BBQ restaurant in the Smoketree Plaza.

For the first time ever, the Michelin Guide has included Palm Springs restaurants. Those in the “first” category are: Bar Cecil, Boozehounds, Workshop Kitchen and Bar, Cheeky’s, 4 Saints, The Barn at Sparrows Lodge, Colony Club, and Tac/Quila.

Breakfast to go from Cheeky’s. Photo by Mary Farah

Reforma Nightclub is now open for dinner and dancing

The Heyday (best burger and mushroom burger in town) is leaving their space at the Hilton and moving to a new spot at 1550 N. Palm Canyon. This was once occupied by JJ’s Mexican Oasis, now permanently closed.

Oscar’s Privado opening soon. 127 E. Tahquitz, #108.

And sadly, downtown’s Brickworks American Bistro + Pizza has closed.

Coming soon

Dave & Buster’s at The River in Rancho Mirage.

Have fun in our desert playground, and don’t forget to shop and stay local so we can invite you back again! See you next time.

I hope you all made it through 2022 as unscathed as possible. No matter the reason, you absolutely deserve a getaway vacation to Palm Springs. The late night temps are in the low 50s, while it’s in the mid-70s by noon and the sun is warm on your skin. Perfect tanning weather, and a heated pool will bring all of the aaahhhs.

Whether you want to keep the party going, or you’re looking to unwind from party season, Palm Springs is a cure. Have a look at our boutique resorts to find your particular jam. There are A LOT to choose from, each one unique in its own way — on the Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels website, you can use a filter to narrow down the choices. I’d do it for you, but you didn’t tell me what you were looking for, so I’m stumped. It’s pretty easy to navigate, so unless you’re a single cell organism, you’ll do fine.

The biggest thing going on this month is the Palm Springs International Film Festival, and I’m going to tell you about that in a different post, but you should get tickets yesterday if you want to attend. Other than that, we’ve got a lot of the usual suspects, a few one-offs, and a brand new nightclub. I’ll do a post about my favorite restaurants before Valentine’s Day so you can make a plan. But first, January 2023. Ready? Let’s go.

One and done

Jan 1: Vintage Market at the Palm Springs Cultural Center — First hour is $10 to get in (first pick!), $5 after 9 a.m. Vendors from all over the country.

Jan. 4: Leslie Jordan: Gone Too Soon. At Quadz Palm Springs, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Jan 5-16: Palm Springs International Film Festival Cruise the website yourself, or you can read about it here.

Jan 19-22: Palm Springs Winter Break — Line dance party.

Items for sale at the Vintage Market. Photo by Katy Carrier

Recurring tours

Historical Society Walking Tours — 14 different tour options, all spectacular.

Architectural Bike Tours — Your guide, Brennan, is all about mid-century modern. He is also a bus tour guide during Modernism Week. Many of our resorts have bikes available, so snag one for a few hours and book the tour.

Desert Tasty Tours — Get a taste of downtown Palm Springs with this fun walking tour. You get some great history, some adult beverages, and some delicious food from our locally owned spots. It’s a great mid-day adventure. Get $5 off when purchasing your tickets by using promo code “PSPHotel.”

MOGO Silent Disco — Get your boogie on with this dance tour. To be clear, you are the dancer. Curated music is pumped through your headset as you disco down Palm Canyon Boulevard. You won’t look weird — you’ll bring friends and make new ones. Use code “pspsh10” at checkout for a 10 percent discount for our readers!

Dance your way through downtown Palm Springs. Photo courtesy of MOGO Silent Disco Tour

Clubs with entertainment

Caliente Comedy at the Cascade Lounge on Fridays

Jazzville at the Cascade Lounge on Thursdays

The Purple Room — Rat Pack styled club with top notch entertainment from all over the country.

PS Underground — If you’ve read this blog before, you know I love this experience. Everything is spectacular, from the venue to the entertainment and the food. One of the most creative and fun events you will ever witness. Everyone becomes BFFs forever, including your hosts and creative team, Michael and Chef Dave.

Oscar’s — There’s a lot going on here, so peep the calendar. If you’re gay (or wanna hang with your gays), the T Dance is the best recurring party in town. If you’re straight, stay away from the bathrooms.

Oscar’s. Courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

PS Air — One-of-a-kind “speakeasy” masquerading as an airplane; it may even have a cockpit, I’m not sure (I mean, it is Palm Springs). But there is in-flight entertainment, and often a naughty stewardess.

Toucan’s — A drag queen institution and dance club on the north end of town near the very popular Boozehounds.

Come On Up Palm Springs Cultural Center (formerly known as — or concurrently, I’m unclear — the Camelot Theater) is stepping it up. They still show movies, and there are two theater companies during season (which is now), as well as Come On Up, featuring recurring musical acts on different weekdays. There’s a lot of parking, so you can bring a crowd.

Nightclubs

Reforma (brand new) — Right next to BevMo. It just opened, and I mean just, like yesterday.

Pretty Faces (fairly new) — I haven’t checked it out yet. LMK if you go.

Theater

Jan 20-29: Palm Canyon Theater: Palm Springs Getaway

Jan 13-22: Dezart Performs: A Bright New Boise

Jan 17-29: CVRep: Dirty Blonde

Jan 27-29: Desert Ensemble Theater: Kill the Editor

There’s a new theater company in town, The Bent. I’m not sure if they’re doing anything in January yet, but peek their website. There are rumors that their very popular show, The Lincoln Debate, will be back in February. For those of you not in the know, Lincoln shared a single bed with another man for four years. The show uses that information as a jumping off point.

If you’re new to PS and you are a gay man looking for the action, you’re looking for East Arenas Road (fun article), two blocks of gay Shangri-La. Pair that with a men’s clothing optional boutique resort, and you’ve reached nirvana.

Okay, that’s it for January. Hope to see you around town enjoying our delicious weather. And as always, please shop and stay local, have a blast, and I’ll see you next month.

“There are three good reasons to be a teacher — June, July, and August.” — Unknown

It’s June, and that means it’s National Accordion Awareness Month. If you’re not familiar with an accordion, it sounds like someone attached a keyboard to a bagpipe and powered it with a leaf blower. At least it did when I played it.

So, I’m here to tell you how to avoid them in the wilds of Palm Springs, all bona fide events/locations almost surely accordion-free zones. That’s right, I care about you. So, read on, my friends. I’ve got you.

June 1: Rock The Park free concert featuring Mirage, a Fleetwood Mac cover band. They do not, to my knowledge, have accordions in any Fleetwood Mac track, so you’re safe. Go downtown before the concert and explore; maybe figure out where you want to have dinner, make a reservation for later, then head on back by Marilyn to rock out. After the concert, go back to said restaurant and you’ll skip all the lines. (Why yes, I have been called an evil genius before. Thank you.)

June 2: Fresh off a sold-out Vegas run, TikTok sensation Broadway Barbara is playing Oscar’s. If you know you know. (And that’s the only time I have ever “known” when someone uses that phrase. I don’t get it, but I know how to use it. Which means I’m evolving.)

June 3-12 is Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week. This is the week when you can try all of the delicious cuisine Palm Springs has to offer on the cheap. Check out the participating restaurants at the link above. (Highest risk of an accordion, but if you avoid Italian and Hungarian, you should be safe. However, then you’ll be missing out on great Italian and Hungarian food, so…your call.)

June 10-12: Splash House is back. You can get tickets here. (The lack of accordions is astounding.)

Courtesy of Splash House

PS Cultural Center

Sundays: Keisha D — One of the best set of pipes in Palm Springs.

Mondays: Mon Petite Salon

Tuesdays: Leanna & Jazz Collective

Upcoming movie events: Mostly camp, often sing-a-longs, and generally a good old blast from the past. Just recently they did John Waters’ Serial Mom, the epitome of classic campy fun.

PS Underground Creativity with zero flaws. Shows sell out in a hot Palm Springs second, so find your level of fun and get’er booked.

June 3-11: Starstruck (part of Restaurant Week)

June 12: Dirty Bingo

June 24: Game Show

June 26: Ovation Brunch

The Purple Room — World class acts and local phenoms. Always an eclectic mix of music in this great Rat Pack location. Note: The Purple Room is closed for the summer starting June 24.

Tuesdays: Rose Mallett

Wednesdays: Charles Herrera, Michael Holmes & Darci Daniels

Thursdays: Sharon Sills

June 3 and 4: Billy Stritch — Cy Coleman Revisted

June 10 and 11: John Lloyd Young

June 17: Jeff Harnar

June 18: Jonathan Karrant

June 24: Kevin Tokarz, Danny Flahive and Andy Fraga — Three of the desert’s finest musicians playing all the music. This is listed as The Purple Room’s season finale, but the website offers one more…

June 25: Elvis the Early Years w/Scot Bruce

Note: The Judy Show is on hiatus while Michael is recovering from a pretty serious medical issue. That’s also probably why they’re closing up a little early this year. We wish him a speedy recovery and look forward to more Judy next season!

Courtesy of The Purple Room

The Alibi had shows all through May, and have not announced anything for June. If they do, you’ll find it at the link above. It’s a great indie music spot, and I’m giving this one an accordion warning on account of those crazy indie artist kidz.

Copa — It’s not your Barry Manilow version. This one has drag shows and late night dancing. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only (unless a private party).

AsiaSF is still having dinner shows. The food is good and the show is splashy.

We’ve got one theater company that’s still giving us all the entertainment through the summer months, and that’s Desert Rose Playhouse, the only Alphabet Mafia theater in Palm Springs. Every show is a celebration, whether it’s a stage show, comedy show, or musical review. It’s in the space that once housed Zelda’s nightclub, and of course there’s a bar, silly. If you’re in town early June, go see their double-header: Sex, and The Drag. Both written by Mae West, and both with a very naughty history. Always good — sometimes risqué — fun.

Courtesy of Desert Rose Playhouse

Open mic: Neuro Center on Wednesdays with Joel Baker — This is on Alejo, and a few major streets east. However, if you love singing with a real live piano player, Joel’s the guy. Local performers stop by and sing, so if you’re resting your vocal cords, you can enjoy an impromptu show — if you’re not, join in. Bring your accordion! (Kidding, leave that packed in the garage.)

Don’t forget to shop and stay local! And let’s meet back here again next month, k?

Did you know that the Latin root for October is “octo” which means … yep, eight. So, why is it the 10th month? Who cares, let’s get going on what’s happening in Palm Springs this month!

Ya Get One Chance This Year, And This Is It

Oct. 6-8: Power Trip featuring Metallica, Iron Maiden, Guns N’ Roses, Tool, AC/DC, and Judas Priest. The festival is being described as the “sequel to Desert Trip.” Ozzy Osbourne was scheduled to perform on Oct. 7, but canceled his appearance less than three months prior to the event due to ongoing health issues.

Oct. 13: Wine & Dine Around The World. Yes, it’s a fundraiser, however Wine & Dine Around the World is a wine-tasting event featuring hundreds of wines from multiple countries, paired with regional hors d’oeuvres. The culmination of “Wine Down Wednesday,” general admission for the event is 6 to 9 p.m.; VIP has early entry at 5 p.m. with an after party ’til 11 p.m. A portion of the proceeds benefits your choice of one charity per ticket. The dress code is desert casual.

Oct. 15: Alohana at Palm Springs Cultural Center. All things tiki — market, movies, and mai tais.

Oct. 19-22: Modernism Week October. 50+ events. See article posted here.

Sunnylands tours. These are part of Modernism Week, but I’m putting them here because if you’re gonna spend some $$ on something, think about a Sunnylands tour.

Oct. 28-29: Taste of On The Mark Fall 2023. A variety of delicious foods and drinks from our favorite vendors — savory to sweet, and everything in between. 111 N. Palm Canyon Drive (at On The Mark). $70-95

Oct. 29: Halloween is such a big deal in Palm Springs it has its own website. From 4 to 9 p.m., if you’re into Halloween, it should be on your bucket list. It’s a scare with flare.

Recurring

A man hikes on a mountain in Palm Springs

There are trails everywhere to explore in Palm Springs. Courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Hiking with T. If you’re an enthusiast, she has the scoop about what’s going on with all the hiking trails.

Mid-Century Moderns, last year’s hit show, will be playing at a brand new theater, The Revolution Stage Company. Besides it being a fun and funny jukebox musical, the theater itself has a full bar, 128 gorgeous blue cushioned theater seats, and an ice cream bar!

Sunday Tea N’ Shade with Sabryna Williams and the Luchettes. “Prepare to sashay into the most fabulous Sunday afternoon experience in Palm Springs!” Every Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Boozehounds dining room, Sabryna Williams and The Lunchettes will host a drag lunch extravaganza, with two guest queens joining in on the fun every week. If that’s not enough, know this: you can order bottomless drinks!

Desert Tasty Tours. There are six restaurants on this terrific tour of Palm Springs that touches on all things iconic along downtown’s three most buzzy blocks. There’s a little booze, a lot of food, and some fun facts to take home with you.

MOGO Silent Disco is back! All you need to know is in their motto: “Shut up and dance!” I’m definitely going this year.

Jazzville. Always a great time with an eclectic mix of music from around the world.

PS Underground. Truly an experience to remember. The food, the entertainment, and the sheer creativity in the heads of Producer Michael and Chef Dave is nothing short of astounding.

The Purple Room. A classic Palm Springs experience, the ambiance at the Purple Room is Rat Pack heaven. During the week you can expect to be entertained by some of Palm Springs’ finest performers and musicians, and the ticketed shows on the weekend are worth way more than the price of admission. The food and drinks are also superb. And lordamercy book a ticket for The Judy Show and do it well in advance. What a show!

VIP Lounge at the Palm Springs Cultural Center. Formerly known as “Come On Up,” they’ve got the same terrific acts as they had when it was Come On Up and some new things too!

Reforma. Modeled after a supper club, guests enjoy their dinner in a dramatic environment. After dinner, the space is transformed into a large dance floor with a state-of-the-art sound system and light show. A private lounge and bar offer additional environments to have a meal or late-night bites with a unique craft cocktail. Entertainment will include DJs and live performances. (They had very cool drag show themes this past summer, but that seems to have fallen off the schedule. Hope it’s back soon because a Taylor Swift Drag Brunch? Yes please.)

Three In The Pink. Drag show at Trixie Motel. This is brand new.

New Restaurant/Bar Alert

A row of chairs lined up at the bar at Maleza in Drift Palm Springs

Share a toast with friends at the Maleza bar. Photo courtesy of Drift Palm Springs

Maleza — In the new Drift hotel. That hotel has got it going on!

Sol Agave — I’m seeing rustic yet fancy Mexican. Looks divine.

Mickey’s Mexican Cuisine — Located in Shamrock’s Irish Pub.

Low Desert — In the Smoke Tree Village shopping center. Not far from downtown, and if you’re staying in one of our boutique hotels on the south end, you can probably walk.

Impala Bar and Grill — Next to Reforma, it’s more of a bar that serves Mexican fare, but it’s cool.

Zadie Cafe — Not named after one of my local heroes, Zadie Bunker, the flying grandma. But it is actually the Yiddish word for grandma.

Cafe Mon Amour — I hear it’s very French. They don’t have a website. Make your own joke.

The Evening Citizen — Easily the most fun website entrance; click on “subscribe” to get it. I also can’t tell you where it is. You’ll have to make a reservation at the 30-seat bar to find out. I have a hunch it is on or near Arenas, as it seems to be owned by the former head bartender from Blackbook.

Coming soon: Play Lounge with games, a bar, and food. I hear they’re going to have a pool table too!  

November Alerts

Participants in a Pride parade in Palm Springs

Pride is right around the corner. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Nov. 3-5 is Pride! 

Starting Nov. 8, Cabaret6: Desert Stars will take place every Wednesday for six weeks at the Revolution Stage. Full bar and ice cream station. All of Palm Springs’ favorite performers — Keisha D., Francesca Amari, Tod Macofsky, Brian Scott, and Rose Mallett — will be doing shows they’ve performed in the bigger cities and rarely in town.

And finally, from timeanddate.com: As we established earlier, the meaning of October comes from the Latin word octo meaning eight. The old Roman calendar started in March, so October was the eighth month. When the Roman senate changed the calendar in 153 BCE, the new year started in January, and October became the 10th month.

Which reminds me, the latest trend on TikTok is to ask a man how often he thinks about the Roman Empire and see what happens. Tell me about it when I see you.

Ciao!

Without a doubt, Christmas in Palm Springs is bright and gay in a variety of ways. And variety is the spice of life, non?

The mornings yield a crisp temp of the low 40s, while the days are sunny and warm, in the 70s — light sweater weather. The spirit and spirits flow freely here, and if you’re not into the boozy side, there are a bunch of fun, family-oriented things to do. There are also some events that are not — family oriented, that is. Read on for all of the naughty and nice awaiting you in Palm Springs’ bright, open, and welcoming arms.

Courtesy of Palm Springs Air Museum

Palm Springs Air Museum Events

Santa Fly-In and Winter Light Show
Dec. 18-22, 6 p.m.

Each evening Santa Claus will arrive at the Air Museum in his helicopter to greet all the good little girls and boys who have come to see him. In addition to sitting for photographs and having a special gift for each child, Santa will open the museum to reveal a Christmas light spectacular for children young and old to enjoy. Details on cost per car or person TBD. 

Men Of The Desert Fashion Show & Luncheon
Dec. 5, 11 a.m.

Now in its 12th year, the Men of the Desert Fashion Show and Luncheon brings together dudes, dogs, and designer duds at the Palm Springs Air Museum. This fashionable event is held in conjunction with Animal Samaritans.

Desert Air
Dec. 10-11

Desert Air, a 21+ event that requires ID and vaccination card, debuts a dance weekend getaway under the desert sky – hosting two intimate days of world class underground dance music amongst the historic aircrafts of the Palm Springs Air Museum. No parking is available at the venue – a shuttle pass is highly encouraged for the best and easiest way to get to and from the Air Museum.

The Air Museum still has their warbird rides, too.

Miscellaneous Fun

Desert Tasty Tours
Available for most of December — check out their calendar for dates

This three hour, $85 walking tour of downtown Palm Springs features food tastings along the way. As Desert Tasty Tours puts it, “Eating your way through the tour is just one of the tasty ingredients — add a dash of history, a cup of culture, and a dollop of famous resident name dropping, and you get a delicious day of fun!” Open to guests 13 and older.

Drink, Dance, and Dine
Dec. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30, 4 p.m.

Enjoy professional and educational performances and community dance lessons, plus hang out with the dancers at Persimmon Bistro & Wine Bar and under the sky in the gorgeous Meyerman Sculpture Garden. Presented by Nickerson-Rossi Dance.

Greentank and Friendly Farms Hall of Flowers (Cannabis Event)
Dec. 8, 5 to 9 p.m.

Eat, drink and vape your way through three specially crafted pairings that will take your tastebuds on a journey into the future of cannabis consumption. This event at Flannery Exchange features special flower sponsor guests Ball Family Farms and Humboldt’s Finest and special guest chef Jonathan Leiva from Oakland. This is a NO SMOKING event. All activations provided will be vapor only.

The Palm Springs Art Museum offers complimentary museum admission from 5 to 7 p.m. during Free Thursdays — be sure to make a reservation online ahead of time

Tours

Red Jeep Tours

Palm Springs Tram

Windmilll Tours

Dinner Theater/Shows (food is involved, okay?)

Oscar’s presents Gunhild Carling
Dec. 3 and 4

This was a HUGE hit last time around.

Purple Room
Dec. 3 and 4
The Skivvies — Say It Ain’t Snow
This troupe of entertainers dazzle with their alt-cabaret, new burlesque show.

Dec. 5,12, and 19
Judy’s Old Fashioned Christmas
Dinner starts at 5 p.m., followed by the show at 7.

Dec. 17 and 18
Diane Schuur

Courtesy of PS Underground

PS Underground

There’s so much going on — first we have Spy on Dec. 4, followed by Gospel Brunch on Dec. 5; Holiday Havoc (the elves have taken over!) on Dec. 11; Sounds of the Season on Dec. 12; Sparkle (international holiday traditions) on Dec. 17; and Rouge (1920s Speakeasy) on Dec. 30.

Theater/Movies

Palm Springs Cultural Center

Classic musical movies on the big screen again. 

Dec. 4: Victor/Victoria

Dec. 18: Best Little Whorehouse In Texas

Dec. 25: White Christmas

Palm Canyon Theater 

The Sound of Music

Dec. 3, 10, 11, 17, 18 at 8 p.m.

Dec. 5, 12, 19 at 2 p.m.

Dec. 9, 16 at 7 p.m.

Holiday Sparkle Christmas pageant

Dec. 15

Desert Rose Playhouse

Christmas With The Crawfords
Dec. 9, 16, 23 at 7 p.m.
Dec. 10, 11 17, 18, 24 at 8 p.m.
Dec 12, 19, 26 at 2 p.m.

We find Ms. (Joan) Crawford prepping for her infamous 1940s Christmas Eve radio broadcast, with Christina and Christopher in tow. The show is a 90-minute parade of famous movie stars dropping by unannounced to sing, dance, and generally toss each other around. You know the gang: Hedda Hopper, Ann Miller, Baby Jane Hudson, Judy Garland, Gloria Swanson, Ethel Merman, Carmen Miranda, Mae West. and even the Andrew Sisters.

Brian Justin Crum Holiday in the Desert
Dec. 3 and 4
Brian Justin Crum is an American singer and actor from San Diego. In 2016, he came to national attention competing on the 11th season of America’s Got Talent, taking fourth place.

The Nutcracker, presented by CK Dance Company
Dec. 21 and 22
CK Dance, Palm Springs’ award-winning dance company, returns to the beautiful Annenberg Theater at the Palm Springs Art Museum for its 25th Anniversary performances of the quintessential holiday ballet The Nutcracker.

Music

Jazzville Wednesdays — see calendar for information on shows

Oscar’s — lots of fun recurring events

Martinis and Moxie – A Desert Society Social
Dec. 12 at 6 p.m.
Celebrating the music and life of Frank Sinatra.

Purple Room

You don’t have to have dinner to listen to some great music during the week, but the food’s pretty fab and they have a great happy hour.

Mondays: Charles Herrera and Keisha D’ perform timeless classics that inspire the soul.

Tuesdays: Rose Mallett, jazz legend, sings the music of Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughn, Duke Ellington, and more.

Wednesdays: Michael Holmes and Darci Daniels swing to the music of the Rat Pack era.

Thursdays: Sharon Sills, Sass, Sex and Song. One of the desert’s most popular performers.

Drag and Nekked Men

A May Zing Sundays at Chill

Andy Santiago presents a drag brunch with no compromises. RuPaul’s Drag Race‘s Honey Davenport hosts Drag Race‘s Mariah Paris Balenciaga. Featuring Jazmyn Simone and Lauren Banall.

PS Drag Brunch
Roly China Fusion presents the only Sunday Dim Sum drag brunch in Palm Springs. Multiple dates, with tickets starting at $15.

Savage Men Male Revue
Dec. 3 at 9 p.m. Tickets start at $20.

Hunk-O-Mania Male Revue Strippers Show or is it Illusions? If you figure it out, let me know…
Dec. at 9 p.m. Pete’s Hideaway. Tickets start at $30.

AirOtic Soirée: An open air burlesque cirque style cabaret
Hunters Palm Springs. Tickets start at $48.

New Years Eve, Rock & Roll Bash at the World Famous Palm Canyon Roadhouse
Dec. 31 at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $20.

Cheers in the new year at the Light It Up New Year’s Eve Block Party at Agua Caliente Palm Springs’ Cascade Lounge. Dance the night away while DJ Lady Kate takes the stage starting at 8 p.m. From food trucks to fireworks and all in between, bring the family out for a great evening!

I’m sure there are more NYE events, but getting that info seems to require selling my first-born cat, and I am not sure which one it is…

Also, coming up on Jan. 6 is the Palm Springs International Film Festival, so book your rooms and get your tickets now.

As always, stay safe, wear your mask, and carry your vaccination card or recent negative test with you at all times. You can still have fun following these rules — I’ve had some wildly fun times since they let me out of my house.

When it comes to 2022, here are some wise words from the grand dame of words, Dorothy Parker: Let the past die, my child, and go gaily on from its unmarked grave. 

Happy everything, everyone!

By Susan Montgomery

My daughter (who is 40-something) is a busy surgeon in San Diego.  I love to travel with her, but she does not have much time to get away. The challenge is: Where can we enjoy a weekend getaway that is not too far away and still feels like a real retreat? Fortunately, we have a lot in common when it comes to our travel preferences. We both love nice hotels with all the amenities (including a fabulous pool of course), wonderful restaurants and cocktails, unique shopping, and lovely weather in the great outdoors.

We have taken a few trips to Palm Springs together and found everything we want in a getaway, including beautiful weather almost any time of year. This article highlights a few of our wonderful experiences on several trips. If you would like to visit Palm Springs with your daughter (or your mother or your sister or your best friend), you might like to stop at some of these spots too.

Stay at The Weekend

We love staying at the small boutique hotels in Palm Springs where we find privacy and serenity in lush settings. While we’ve had relaxing stays at several delightful hotels, I think The Weekend Palm Springs is an ideal choice for a mother/daughter getaway because it offers stylishly furnished two-bedroom suites. My daughter and I prefer our own rooms so this works well for us. At The Weekend, we can stay together but have our own separate rooms for sleeping. (I’ve heard that I snore, but that can’t possibly be true.)

A classic example of mid-century modern architecture, this sleek, luxurious hotel in the lovely Old Las Palmas neighborhood was once a retreat for many of the “rat pack” Hollywood celebrities. The structure has recently undergone a stunning, multi-million dollar renovation but still retains its historical character. These suites surround a beautiful, inviting pool with lounge chairs and benches. (I can just imagine Marilyn Monroe languidly lounging by the pool.) The Weekend is a peaceful getaway but still within easy walking distance of hip bars, restaurants, and shops. Included with each stay is a delicious, ample continental breakfast delivered right to your room every morning. We both love savoring early morning coffee and really looked forward to the delectable breakfast trays.

Eat and drink

There are so many special spots in Palm Springs for great food and cocktails. Here are just a few suggestions for places my daughter and I love.

Azucar is the restaurant at La Serena Villas and is a perfect stop for lunch or dinner. The setting is modish and open with an upstairs deck overlooking the mountains and the pool. The cocktails are innovative and the food is equally tantalizing. We loved the fish tacos and watermelon salad with feta, but there are many other enticing choices.

Cocktails at Azucar in La Serena Villas

Holiday House is another chic restaurant in a small hotel. Its bar focuses on creative cocktails (such as the Aperol Spritz or the Club 55 martini (made with gin, elder flower liqueur, lemon, and rosemary-infused syrup). For lunch, if you are really hungry, you will love the juicy Pantry Cheeseburger or for a healthier option, try the Baby Kale Salad topped with salmon.

Cheeky’s (adjacent to the Alcazar Hotel) is the perfect place for a tasty breakfast or lunch before exploring Palm Springs. We love their cheesy eggs and unique bacon flight accompanied by great coffee or a spicy bloody mary. (Start the day with a zing!)

Wexler’s Deli at another small hotel, Arrive, attracts a lively youngish crowd, but this older babe loved it too. The vibe is rocking and the drinks are refreshing. We tried the savory smoked fish platter that paired well with some unique cocktails, including one that looked just like a snow cone (but was infused with vodka)

For Late Night Fun

When traveling with your daughter, you can’t go to bed too early. After dinner, the night has just begun and there is lots to do in Palm Springs.

My daughter particularly enjoyed the cozy speakeasy, Seymour’s, which is hidden away in the famous steakhouse Mr. Lyons (also an excellent dining choice). Its secret location and dimly lit atmosphere capture the ambiance of prohibition days. Creative cocktails are imaginative and delicious.

The Purple Room in the Trinidad Hotel is an iconic supper club with live entertainment Tuesdays through Sundays and vintage cocktails like Old Blue Eyes, the signature old-fashioned that was evidently Frank’s favorite drink. The dinner menu also offers traditional, nicely prepared steak, fish and pasta options. When we were there most recently, the talented owner, Michael Holmes, was performing a special show with nostalgic rat pack songs that carried us back to a bygone era. I almost expected Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin to stroll out on stage to soothe us with their old favorites.

Also harking back to the Hollywood era is the Casablanca Lounge in Melvyn’s Restaurant at the Ingleside Inn. (Melvyn’s is also a romantic spot for classic dishes like Steak Diane and Bananas Foster prepared flambè at your table.) Guests sip cocktails and dance to live music most nights, making this a perfect stop for an after dinner drink.

To do:

Besides eating and drinking, there is lots to do in Palm Springs—all activities that appeal to both my daughter and me. Most of the small hotels have bikes for guests and plenty of tours are available from celebrity home bus tours to walking tours around various neighborhoods. We love the entrancing Palm Springs Art Museum. The impressive collections focus on art of the Americas and California, including Native American artifacts and contemporary glass art, highlighted by a stunning Chihuly sculpture. My daughter and I have also really enjoyed the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway. In ten minutes, you can ride in a unique tramcar (with a rotating floor) from the Coachella Valley desert up 8,500 feet to a top peak of the San Jacinto Mountains. At the top you can savor the gorgeous views, hike around, and then have lunch. And of course once you are back from your tram ride, you can shop, shop, shop in the many small boutiques with unique items you can’t find anywhere else. We particularly like the shops with mid-century furnishings and décor.

We never get tired of visiting Palm Springs. There is so much to see and do — and eat and drink — and it’s so special to share the experience with your daughter — or your mother. I hope to go back with my daughter for my birthday soon.

Well, we made it. We got a good scrub down from Tropical Storm Hilary, and some scattered palm tree exfoliation in yards and streets that will be gone by the time you read this.

September is just the warm up — maybe it’s the cool down — to season, so bargains are still in the offing. Consider booking a getaway and take advantage of those pre-season rates. The weather is being a real mensch.

Here’s what’s going on to help you decide when you’re coming, but first, some reminders: Modernism Week October is in … you guessed it, October; Halloween in Palm Springs, specifically on Arenas, needs to be experienced; and Pride is in November. This just in: Adele Dazeem will be headlining! (That’s a John Travolta Oscar joke, folks … for those of you who don’t do the Oscars, in 2014 that’s how Travolta intro’d Idina Menzel singing “Let It Go.“) 

Let’s go!

Looking for something to do over Labor Day weekend? Check out DJ ModGirl pumping out the party at various venues over the weekend and dance the day and night away.

The Dinah is the largest lesbian/queer/non-binary party in the world, and it’s happening Sept. 20-24. I’ve got all the places to stay neatly offered here. DJs and dancers not yet announced, but they ask that you follow their Instagram for all the deets.

Hundreds of women in the audience at a concert at The Dinah in Palm Springs

The crowd at The Dinah. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Acrisure events in September include Cirque du Soleil Corteo and monster trucks.

Reforma has a lot of fun events on top of dining and dancing. Saturdays they have (IMHO) the most creative drag shows around. Beyoncé, Barbie, Taylor Swift, and Britney Spears have all had their drag moments here.

Pretty Faces Nightclub is described by owner Michael as a Pee Wee’s Playhouse kind of club, due to the decor of fairies and mushrooms. Dancing and events.

Cinema Diverse at Palm Springs Cultural Center is in its 16th year. You can read all about the LGBT+ film festival here. That first link gets you tickets. As of this post, the films have not yet been announced.

Mondays are for PS ukulele club @ Hits. It’s a local get together, but I happen to know some out-of-town enthusiasts. Plus, it’s a weed shop, so …

Chill Bar — Not Your Grandma’s Bingo on Saturdays, Varsity Fridays.

Mondays: King’s Highway & Amigo Room give us a double feature with Bella da Ball’s Drag Bingo, followed by her Trivia Night in the Amigo. $30

Sept. 17: Into old Hollywood and new plays? Confessions of a Starmaker is happening at 2 p.m. on the Palm Springs Art Museum’s Annenberg stage. Tickets are $100 with a cocktail reception to follow.

PS Underground is back and coming in hot with Light. Check out all their shows, including returning favorites like Dirty Bingo.

The Purple Room has reopened after its summer hiatus with Debby Boone and The Judy Show. There’s free entertainment on weeknights from local favorites Rose Mallett, Sharon Sills, Michael Holmes, Charles Herrera and Darcy Daniels. 6:30 to 9 p.m. Check the website for future ticketed shows.

PS Air Bar — Even if they didn’t have great entertainment, and they do, it’s worth going just for the ambiance. And their California Caesar is unlike any other you’ve had. Delish!

Old airplane seats inside the PS Air bar in Palm Springs, California

Welcome to PS Air. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

V Wine Lounge is a great place to have a glass of wine, beer, or craft cocktail. I had the  specialty blueberry mocktail invented by the lounge’s owner, James, and it was so good! Also, we learned it’s become a lesbian hangout on Mondays and Tuesdays when Leanna and Keisha D take the stage (respectively). It was a learning bonanza for this blogger, because karaoke nights are big with the lesbian crowd, and those ladies can sing! Minimal cover of $10. Check schedule for mo’info mo’events (In Living Color, anyone?).

One of our desert’s most talented and philanthropically inclined songbirds, Keisha D, has four residencies right now. We’ve got V Wine on Tuesdays with her full band of phenomenal players, PS Air Bar on Wednesdays, The Roost (with band) on Thursdays, and Sundays are an intimate evening at Palm Springs Cultural Center (her band will be back with her come October). I cannot encourage you enough — GO! And if you see that she’s doing her Tina Turner show? Grab that ticket ASAP. You don’t want to miss it.

If I don’t see you on the street, I’ll see you in October!

Did you know that Palm Springs is internationally famous? Well, it is. Since 2006, people from all over the planet have been coming to Palm Springs during the month of February for the banging party we call Modernism Week. It’s like the United Nations all up in here.  

Before the big event, Modernism Week holds a four-day preview in October called Modernism Fall Preview (a.k.a. Mini-Mod Week), running from October 14 through 17. It’s jam-packed with loads to do — over 50 events!  

Modernism Week and Mini-Mod Week are so popular the best events sell out the same day they go on sale. So unless some fabulous bit of wizardry transpires (it might, Palm Springs is magical), forget about Sunnylands and Frank Sinatra’s Twin Palms Estate Tour. There’s plenty left to see though, from significant mid-century modern home tours to architectural double decker bus tours. 

You can dress as you like, but a lot of people choose to pull out their pedal pushers and fedoras — whatever it takes to achieve that retro look. During Mini-Mod Week, the town takes on that old-timey feel of the ’50s and ’60s.

There are some cool cocktail-style events, but those sell out pretty fast. One of my very favorite supper clubs, PS Underground, has a brand new show for this year called Beatnik. Hurry and book, their shows are always outstanding. 

Even if you miss out on your favorite events, there’s still the main event at the Palm Springs Convention Center where you can browse everything mid-century modern, including art, furniture, and lighting. You can find a list of exhibitors here. 

If you’re the curious type like me, or a little iffy on modernism, this article breaks down mid-century modern art for you. The same with architecture here. 

Friday night is the big opening night party for the Modernism Show and Sale. Tickets are $75 in advance and $85 at the door. A purchase to the opening night party gives you access to the show on Saturday and Sunday. 

Skipping the party? (You’re gonna say “no” to a party?!) You can still buy a ticket for Saturday and Sunday that will cost you one Jackson (soon to be Tubman!) and gets you in both days so you can shop ‘til you bop later on that evening. 

Whether you do or don’t plan on going to the Modernism Week preview, but love the vibe of the mid-mod experience, we have mid-century modern hotels for the complete experience. There are 25 of them, all with great amenities — learn more about these fabulous spots here. 


The Purple Room, a Rat Pack-inspired supper club, has some of the finest entertainment in town. Here are the weekend shows during Modernism Preview:  

October 14: Sharon Sills (every Thursday) 

October 15: Branden and James — vocals and cello performing the Lady Gaga songbook 

October 16: Branden and James  — vocals and cello performing the Lady Gaga songbook 

October 17: The Judy Show (my favorite show in town! Every Sunday.) 

Also, check out V Wine Lounge, where the vibe is so retro you’ll squee. 

By the way, the bus tours are hella fun. I am a tour guide assistant and even from my view (I sit in the bottom of the bus, you’ll be on top — bring sunscreen and hold onto your hats!) it’s a fun and informative 2-and-a-half hour ride. 

Hope to see you there, and let’s go retro! 

Kay Kudukis Paints Palm Springs Red

Glorious September in Palm Springs, often offering the perfect balance between sun worshipers and those preferring a more sun-kissed look. With the lower temps and evenings cooling down substantially, the nights are delightfully dreamy. Leisurely strolls down Palm Canyon are back in style, and dining al fresco is de rigueur.

VillageFest courtesy of VillageFest

With the evenings cooling off, the VillageFest is definitely heating up! Our Thursday night street fair/party partially closes Palm Canyon Drive to traffic. Vendors are usually scattered from Amado to Baristo. Palm Canyon Drive is filled with buskers; pop-up restaurants and stores; and artisans of every ilk. Palm Springs is home to a ton of incredibly talented artists and crafters. Downtown businesses remain open, so it’s scads of fun. Even though it’s outdoors, it’s a large event and masks are required. More about that at the end.

And now, onto some most excellent adventures. Some big, some small– you can have it all in Palm Springs:

Dinah Weekend

This is for all the Sappho Sisters who have been waiting for their turn to throw a party. And this is a great one. I will talk more about it in my article All Gay, All Day. It has been my observation that lesbians are underserved in Palm Springs. Although everywhere is all-inclusive, gay bars mean mostly for men. I’ll tell you more about it in the next blog. But

If you’d like to skip my next article, you can go straight (“Never!” said every lesbian) to their website here.

Desert Rose Theater Upcoming Shows and Venue

Theater

Desert Rose Playhouse is just off its massively successful run of The Great American Trailer Park Musical (TGATPM). I saw it, and I laughed uncontrollably throughout the whole show. Those who hadn’t stopped at a dispensary prior laughed just as hard. The Rocky Horror Show will be up on stage until September 12th. Trust me when I say that this LGBTQ+ friendly theater company is full of surprises (the leads of TGATPM were in drag) so I’m looking forward to meeting their Dr. Frank-N-Furter.

Latin Nights at The Cascade Lounge courtesy of Cascade Lounge

Entertainment

Jazzville is back at The Cascade Lounge. If you wear the name jazzbo proudly (as you should) this is where you want to be on Thursdays. Book in advance. Their shows sell out pretty quickly and start at 7:00 PM.

Sunday nights get steamy at Cascade with Nacho Bustillos and Quinto Menguante’s Latin Nights. Their music ranges from salsa, cumbia, banda, bachata, reggaeton to pop. Dancing shoes are highly encouraged.

Melvyn’s Sunday Jams at the famous Ingleside Inn begin at 3pm on Sundays and go until the musicians get tired, aka dinner time. Led by Mikael Healey, it’s a lineup of the best of the best players in PS and beyond. It’s a $30 cover, it’s in Melyvn’s Casablanca Lounge, and – oh no! It’s only running through 9/26! Once again, calling all jazzbos. Also, it’s a pretty fun experience. You get to do a little bit of dress up, and drink martinis just like in the Rat Pack days.

Oscars has some special shows coming up, including evenings with Linsday Wagner and Sandra Bernardt – not together, that would be a bit “too too” even for Palm Springs. Heads would explode from nostalgia overload if the Bionic Woman and Madonna’s ex-bestie shared a stage.

Me and some of my favorite Queens

Drag Shows

Toucans – OM Stars, far too many shows to list. Check the website, prepare to stay out late, and prepare to dance your “katushies” off.

Roly China Fusion Sadly, the Drag Brunch ends on 9/5 (as of this typing). HOWEVER they have a great party planned for Pride, so give it a look-see. More in my next blog.

Bitchies Brunch at Oscars – Like you need me to tell you anything at all about this event.

PS Air Saturday Night Flight – Naughty stewardess, drinks, while you “fly” the friendly skies. Special experience.

The Judy Show starring Michael Holmes at The Purple Room

Dinner Shows

Guys– The Purple Room is back! That means The Judy Show is back! I may have just peed a little. Upcoming guests are Jane Monheit, and Lee Squared: Liberace and Ms. Peggy Lee Coming Out (of covid). Keep checking the website for updated acts, and if you’ve never been, go to The Judy Show. If you’re like me and gained the COVID ten-ish, you’ll laugh a few pounds off.

There are some returning shows and some new forms of musical and culinary insanity from the wildly creative minds of Michael Fietsam and David Horgen of PS Underground. They, too, keep adding shows, and sell-out fast, so you’ve gotta be fast on the click.

Fun and Games

Monday nights Wilma and Frieda’s turns into Ethyl’s Place and Atomic Bingo! Doors open 5:30pm, Bingo! Starts at 6:30pm.

420 Bank and Dispensary Lounge has some events coming up, so check out their events. They also have a sort of “Palm Springs’ Got Talent” show with a recording contract at Melrose Recording Studio here in PS. Hosted by Derek Jordan Gregg, you can email JayBirdBookings@yahoo.com for more info and to sign up. Every Thursday, 5:30pm-8:00pm.

Summer Sing Along is still happening at the PS Cultural Center.

Don’t forget about The PS Tramway. Super fun ride to the top of the mountain with plenty of trails to hike. Speaking of hiking, don’t forget to check out our great preserves at Indian Canyons. Tons of trails and they’re all absolutely GORGEOUS. Take water, and wear hiking shoes and socks. We got rattlers.

Scavenger hunts. I know. You were not expecting that. But what fun! It’s a bit more of a group activity, so if you don’t work and play well with others, earbuds by the pool! There are two here in Palm Springs, Viator and Let’s Roam. They are a fun addition to a walking tour, so you get to stroll through history and Palm Springs landmarks while playing a game.

In October, there’s one to support our fantastic, no-kill, Palm Springs Animal Shelter. Here’s the info on the Scavenger Hunt. If you can’t play, a small donation goes a long way. I was going to put a team together, but I only have one friend–and they’re mad at me.

Comedy

Oscars is bringing Last Laugh Comedy to the last Wednesday of every month. Comedian and host Max Mitchell is bringing his funniest friends to entertain us. I’m a comedy ho, so – see ya there.

Upping their Friday game, Cascade Lounge has Cascade Comedy. Presented by Comedy Madness, each show is 90 minutes and features a roster of comedians with past appearances on Tonight Show, Conan, Netflix, America’s Got Talent, Comedy Central, Showtime and more.

One-Off Event

Dîner en Blanc – COMING IN OCTOBER

You really need to do some planning for this one. Everything except your skin color needs to be white. Your outfit, your table and chairs (which you bring) – and your picnic basket (which you also bring…with food in it). You will not know where you will be dining until you get there, but you will be eating your own food – so no allergy issues there. You can learn all about it on their website (which I believe might also be white) where you can also sign up,

Now that our lights are back on, we’re doing our best to keep them that way. The City of Palm Springs requires that all of the clubs require proof of vaccination, so you can either whip out your card, or show them your QR code from the State of California. And, at the time of this writing, masks are required indoors, so when you put on your shoes and your shirt, stick a mask in your pocket. And then–you know what? I’m not your mom, and you’re a responsible adult, right? You know what to do.

Viva Palm Springs!

In Palm Springs during the summer months, we sing a little ditty, and it goes like this: “Lord help the sister, who comes between me and my mister,” but we’re not talking boyfriends like Rosemary Clooney and Vera Allen are in White Christmas no. It’s those wonderful inventions that are de rigueur in downtown Palm Springs, the ones that provide a light zhuzh of moisture to your skin. And while the first part isn’t true in any sense of the word, we do have fabulous water misters cooling everyone down while they walk down the street. We just don’t sing about it.

Now that we’ve cleared that up, how about a little humblebrag on the weather so far this year? It’s been damn near perfect, that’s what it’s been. A better season has not been had. The ratio of cool to heat, and dry to wet, produced a gorgeous array of desert flowers, and gave everyone a chance to wear a cute vintage jacket or a treasured designer sweater, and what girl doesn’t love fashion?

Now we’re moving into another season (more fashion!!) and if you compare Palm Springs to the peppers on the Scoville scale we’re going to be nearing Scotch Bonnet by the end of June. But right now, we’re at a very do-able Thai pepper.

So, now’s a great time — day or evening — to stroll down Palm Canyon and pop into local watering holes and eateries for a well-earned cocktail and a nosh. If it’s hot, those misters we talked about earlier will be zhuzhing. Caveat: this is not a good time for any hairstyle that requires a hold. That will not happen with misters, so leave the hairspray at home. You look gorgeous au natural.

A beautiful aerial view of Palm Springs. Photo by Chris Miller

For those that would prefer eating rather than drinking their sugar, you must try some of our award-winning toffee at Brandini’s (they give out samples). They’ve also got a great variety of items including popcorn, milkshakes, and ice cream, and can even make you an espresso, with toffee. Enjoy it outside while you check out details for the restoration they’ve got planned on the historic Plaza Theater located next to and slightly behind Brandini.

My favorite date shake is at Tutti Frutti, made entirely with local ingredients. It is heavenly, and I am not usually a fan of dates unless they’re stuffed with goat cheese and wrapped in bacon. If you’re not willing to risk your status as a disliker of dates, try the yogurt. It is also made entirely from local ingredients. I am particularly fond of the sorbets (sour apple ZOMG) and of the non-produce options, the salted caramel runs a good race against the chocolate. I have never had a loser here, and I may have tried them all.

If you are a fan of pizza there is only one place and you must go there, I insist. Bill’s Pizza is in La Plaza on the Indian Canyon side, next to Tyler’s (great burger joint, closes for summer). The crust is award-winning sourdough, house recipe, and I am partial to the all-veggie Elton John pizza. They’re all incredibly good though. The pizzeria is super busy all the time, but they’re friendly and efficient. The bathroom is a trip. It’s located outside, then through a coded door, and down a couple of hallways in what feels like a basement. Outside of that, they’re fine. They work.

Back on Palm Canyon, right next to Sonny Bono’s statue, is Maracas Restaurant, and not only do they serve one helluva margarita, the street tacos and salsa are outstanding. The fajitas smell so good they might as well have a smoky cartoon aroma finger wafting out of them leading you inside. The staff is magnifico, and if you see a tall blonde-ish guy with a beard hanging around, drinking a beer, that’s the owner. Todd. Nice guy — say hello.

A luxurious evening dip at your boutique hotel’s sparkling blue pool is a great way to end an evening outside your room. That’s where my involvement ends. You’re pretty much guaranteed that there’s never going to be a mob at your pool like there can be at the larger hotels, so at the end of the day you won’t be hanging around with strangers, but possibly new friends.

For those with grander aspirations than eating, relaxing, and shopping, see the list of events and clubs below and get cracking on a plan. Or just make a plan to come and wing it from there. There’s plenty to keep you happy. Read on…

June 1-4 and June 6-14: Scavenger Hunt (June 2, 3, 8, 9, and 10 are for lovebirds), departing at various locations. 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. Read all about it in the link.

June 2-11: Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week. Participating restaurants valley-wide. Menus are often set, as are the prices. It’s a great way to get to know the Coachella Valley! Mangia!

The entrance to Melvyn's

Melvyn’s at the Ingleside Inn is participating in Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

June 9-11: Splash House: Passes, Lineup. Might I suggest a hotel room away from the bustle? Then just use a rideshare to venue hop. If you’re done for the night, but the party’s still going, you’ll get a good night’s sleep because you were smart enough to book a room at a locally-owned resort or hotel.

June 10: Diana Ross at The Show (SOLD OUT — I just put this in here because I am humblebragging again. Our little valley got Diana Ross!! #sorrynotsorry)

June 2: Lizzo at Acrisure. Our little valley got Lizzo! But unless you’ve already got tickets… (see parentheses above)

June 19-24: Native American Arts Festival, Idyllwild. It’s art in the mountains!

June 20-26: Short Fest. Great option for people who love movies but have short attention spans. I’m kidding (am I? Isn’t that why we like cartoons?). Sometimes a story can be told succinctly and with an impact in a shorter span of time. They know when to stop writing, which is on my list of things to learn.

Clubs

Reforma – Ticketed events, great dancing, and some very fun Saturday brunch shows like Disney Villains Drag Brunch on June 3. Regular menus here.

Cascade Lounge — Located in the Agua Caliente Casino, they have comedy nights, Jazzville, blues reviews, and Latin nights. They occasionally have late night concerts too, so check the website, and definitely check out the new Séc-he spa. It’s pricey but I’m told it’s worth it.

P.S. Underground — No longer underground, they’ve had their own fabulous space since 2019. Highly original, themed dinner theater (or brunch) where the food is as big a draw as the entertainment.

The Purple Room — Weekends are ticketed events with traditional music acts that lean more toward jazz, but they’ve got a mix. The Judy Show is my favorite show in town.

Palm Springs Cultural Center — This space has so much going on, it’s crazypants! They’ve got movies, concerts, plays, weeknight entertainment with snacks and adult libations, and film festivals galore. They’ve always got something cool going on, so make sure to check back often.

PS Air Bar — Like no other bar in Palm Springs, it’s decorated as the inside of an airplane complete with airplane windows. It’s a must see, for sure. The place has a terrific sense of humor about itself, and the entertainment always flies first class local, and so will you. The wine shop below not only has terrific choices in beer and wine, there’s a small “deli” serving delicious salads and sandwiches.

A bar cart at PS Air Bar

All aboard PS Air Bar. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

If you’re planning on a hike, please go early early early, and take a lot of water with you. The best hike right now is Tahquitz Canyon. The waterfall is flowing merrily down the stream, and it’s about 45 in and 30 out (I don’t know why it is, stop asking me!).

And lastly, we have a brand spankin’ new hotel in town called Drift Palm Springs, and it has a restaurant called Maleza.

That’s it for June, everyone. Don’t forget the sunscreen and the hat, or even an umbrella or a parasol if you’re fancy (and we are!).

See you under the misters!