empty aquarium (copy)

Monterey Bay Aquarium has been closed to the public since March 13, 2020. But now it's opening back up again to members starting on May 1 and then to the public on May 15. 

Plays? Yes, please. Drive-in movies and an Aquarium reopening? That, too. Tacos and beer and other delicious food offerings from food trucks? Of, course. This weekend and beyond, has a lot in store for Monterey County in the virtual and real world. 

Eclectic Collective Productions has a virtual showing of three short plays at 7pm on Friday-Saturday April 30-May 1 (and again at 7pm on May 7-8), experience the works of playwrights Janice Rocke, Nina Solomita and David Norum, who tackle big societal issues, including policing and sheltering the unsheltered. According to the collective, the three plays will be “woven together to tell the big story of marginalized people,” in a presentation they call Same as it Never Wasn’t. Find it streaming on YouTube. In lieu of admission–and sticking to the themes of their play–they’ll instead use the livestream as a way to raise funds for local nonprofits trying to find solutions to the problems highlighted. 

Max’s Helping Paws Foundation is capitalizing on the growing popularity of drive-in movies. From Saturday, May 1 through May 8, the organization will hold its reimagined Paws for a Cause fundraiser, kicking things off with a drive-in movie at the Monterey County Fairgrounds, 2004 Fairgrounds Road, Monterey. The drive-in movie fundraiser begins on May 1 with a special screening of Grease. Gates are open from 4:30-5pm and the film rolls from 5-7pm. Tickets are $105 and pays for vehicle entry, a deluxe snack tote and a chance to win special prizes. There are other events like a silent auction, with details coming soon. Check the website for updates and details at maxshelpingpaws.org.

Guess who is back? The Monterey Bay Aquarium (located at 886 Cannery Row, Monterey) is up and running again at 50-percent capacity, at least to its members. It'll open to the public by May 15. The reopening kicks things off with Member Days from Saturday, May 1- Friday, May 14. Hours are now limited from 10am-5pm, with the last entries accepted at 3:30pm. The Aquarium is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. But for non-members, mark your calendars for May 5, when tickets go on sale to the public. Find more information and precaution details and requirements online at montereybayaquairum.org.

The Salinas Sports Complex is officially reopening on Cinco de Mayo, perhaps not with an official festival but for the first-ever Salinas Food Truck Round-Up, from 4-10pm on Wednesday, May 5. There’s no admission fee, but definitely bring a few bucks to sample beer, tortas, tacos, hot dogs and more. Did we mention there will be live music? Follow fan favorite Tortas Al 100 on Instagram (instagram.com/tortasal100) for updates and details. Can't make it? No worries, the food-truck round-up will be a recurring weekly event. Find the Salinas Sports Complex at 1034 N. Main St., Salinas

Tune in to Monterey Peninsula College’s Guests’ Author Series with novelist Becky Chambers. Chambers is a winner of the Hugo Award for her Wayfarers series. Her talk happens from 7-8pm on Wednesday, May 5. To register, email hmarchand@mpc.edu.

Marielle Argueza is a staff writer and calendar editor for the Weekly. She covers education, immigration and culture. Additionally, she covers the areas of Marina and South County. She occasionally writes about food and runs the internship program.

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