empire polo club

Things to Do This Week, Dec. 30 to Jan. 5

The polo season officially opens Jan. 5, and Hollywood stars come to the desert to celebrate the opening of the Palm Springs International Film Festival.

JIM POWERS Attractions, Current Digital

empire polo club
The official “Opening Day & Hat Day” at Empire Polo Club is set for Jan. 5 in Indio.
PHOTOGRAPH BY GETTY IMAGES
GO: 10 Ways to Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the Desert / DEC. 31

Here are 10 places to celebrate New Year’s Eve like Dive Palm Springs with synchronized swimmers, but we’re just scratching the surface to ring in 2020. https://bit.ly/2rVmom2

GO: AKC All-Breed Dog Shows and Obedience and Rally Trials / Jan. 2-5

“Coming and winning at the Kennel Club of Palm Springs is really considered a prestigious win,” says Trish Williamson, assistant show chair for the annual canine competition at the Empire Polo Club in Indio. Part of the reason for that clout is the show’s sheer size: “We’re usually the biggest show west of the Mississippi,” Williamson explains. Last year’s attendance count clocked in at 12,000 people, and the affair has an economic impact of about $2 million. kennelclubpalmsprings.org

GO: Palm Springs International Film Festival / Jan. 2–13

Founded in 1990 by then-mayor Sonny Bono as a tourism and cultural initiative, the film festival has grown to attract more than 135,000 attendees and screen more than 200 films annually at locations throughout Palm Springs and Cathedral City. Keep your eyes peeled for celebrities around town. psfilmfest.org

• READ NEXT: 10 Can’t Miss Films to See at the Palm Springs Film Festival.

GROOVE: The LPs / JAN. 2

The LPs founders Lisa Black and Paul Forrester perform their dance hit and rock“faves” with various local talent throughout the Hi-Desert area of the Morongo Basin, Jan. 2 at Pappy & Harriet’s. pappyandharriets.com

GO: El Paseo Art Walk / Jan. 3

With striking street art and a string of galleries that covers several blocks, renowned shopping street El Paseo is just as much an aesthete’s paradise as it is a fashionista’s. Visit more than 15 galleries and attend exhibition openings and artist receptions during the area’s monthly art walk. elpaseoartwalk.com

GO: EL Paseo Cruise Night / JAN. 3

You don’t need to own a Classic Car to enjoy all the festivities of Cruise Night on El Paseo. Car and non-car owners meet at the upper east level parking lot of The Gardens on El Paseo (behind Sammy’s) at 3:15 p.m. At 4:15 p.m. a Cruise Night Kick Off follows with a guest emcee. elpaseocruisenight.com

GO: LiveWell Festival / Jan. 4

Embrace Virgil’s adage that “the greatest health is wealth” with a festival day at Palm Desert Civic Center Park, where a kids zone, food trucks, live music, a blood drive, pet adoptions, and group fitness including yoga and Zumba provide for the whole family’s bodies, minds, and souls. livewellfestival.org

GO: Art on Main Street / Jan. 4, 18

More than 100 artists vend paintings, ceramics, jewelry, and more in Old Town La Quinta, a charming collection of restaurants and boutiques designed to reflect the lively but peaceful city centers of Europe and Northern California. oldtownlaquinta.com

GO: OFFICIAL OPENING OF POLO SEASON / jan. 5

There are two featured matches every Sunday and the first game starts at noon. Sunday Polo games are scheduled every week through March 29. The Club will be closed on Jan. 19 and again on March 8.General Admission is free with a $20 parking fee (cash only) for all Sunday afternoon polo games. VIP Admission is $30 per person and includes parking, VIP seating and a complimentary Champagne Divot Stomp. empirepolo.com

ART EXHIBITIONS
Alexander Girard: A Designer’s Universe / Through March 1

Girard wore many hats in the world of design — buildings, furniture, fabrics, and more all bear his mark. More than 400 objects, plus a replica of one of his celebrated interiors, bring the artist’s unique sense of whimsy to the galleries of the Palm Springs Art Museum. psmuseum.org

Touching History: Stonewall 50 / Through March 29

Fifty years after the uprising at the Stonewall Inn in New York City that kickstarted the fight for LGBTQ rights, the Palm Springs Art Museum presents this beautiful exhibition of photographs and collages exploring the power of queer intimacy and touch. psmuseum.org

Reach for the Sky: Tradition + Inspiration / Through June 7

A striking 30-foot-tall totem pole has greeted visitors to Walter and Leonore Annenberg’s Rancho Mirage estate, Sunnylands, since 1978. Carved by indigenous artist Henry Hunt and later restored by his son Stan and grandson Jason, the totem pole serves as the focal point for a new exhibition featuring work by the Hunts and American sculptor Herb Alpert. sunnylands.org