4 April 28, 2011
Contributing Writers & Staff
What’s Inside From the Publishers it’s lA for Me, baby!
Our Man stan The Miracle Mile
by ChrIS erSkIne
From the bullpen
by brIan boyé
Jay sanderson: searching for the Good life page 12
99 Cans of Ajax on the Wall Pink’s
Tommy lasorda: For the love of Dodger blue page 14 by rafael Guerrero
by JoSe martInez
herb Alpert: sounds of the City
by edWIn folven
by JoSe martInez
by meGan o’neIl
Wolfgang Puck Canter’s: 80 Years of Pastrami on rye
page 42 page 44
Griffith Observatory page 20 by rafael Guerrero
susan Feniger: Taking it To the streets page 48 by JoSe martInez
by edWIn folven
lorri Jean’s Westward Journey page 24
by JoSe martInez
by rafael Guerrero
by madeleIne Shaner
laCma, GeorGe C. PaGe,
by rafael Guerrero
The TAO of MAD
lAs Dining Adventures page 55 by JIll WeInleIn
the PeterSen, Cafam
Farmers Market’s Native sons
Brian Boyé is the Fashion Director for Men’s Health, an internationally distributed magazine with over 11 million circulation. Brian was the first editor hired by Michael and Karen Villalpando when they purchased the newspaper back in 1990. We welcome his “words of wisdom” and are lucky to call him our dear friend. Megan O’Neil earned her chops as a newspaper reporter at the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press. She is now a staff writer with the Los Angeles Times Community Newspapers. Megan returned to her roots to provide us with a comprehensive profile of The Grove developer, Rick Caruso.
by edWIn folven
by JoSe martInez
los Tres Mustachios
Chris Erskine is a columnist for the Los Angeles Times. His “Man of the House” and “Fan of the House” columns appear in the Home and Sports sections. We are grateful to Chris for lending his insight and humor to this very special issue.
by edWIn folven
by rafael Guerrero
by JoSe martInez
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
Jerry snyder page 30
by edWIn folven
The road to hollywood boulevard page 33
by edWIn folven
Vintage Park labrea News
by tIm PoSada
Tim Posada is our weekly movie critic, but he also wears additional hats at the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press. He wrote an outstanding piece on the history of theatre in Los Angeles, and he designed many of the pages in this magazine. Tim also lends a hand to the production of the newspaper and served as a page designer for the 65th Anniversary issue. Madeleine Shaner has been the theatre critic for the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press for the past 25 years. In addition, she writes “Mad Musings” when the muse moves her, and she is our dependable proofreader every Wednesday. Her quick wit and British humor bring joy to our readers. “Mad”, as we affectionately call her, is a wonderful asset to the newspaper. Jill Weinlein has served as our restaurant writer for the past year. Her vivacious personality comes through in her weekly reviews, and her Restaurant News column is chock full of dining specials, new restaurants, and fun, food-related activities. For the 65th Anniversary Issue, Jill highlights some of Los Angeles’ best and oldest restaurants. Staff writer Rafael Guerrero interviewed the irrepressible Tommy Lasorda of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. He also profiled such notable Angelenos as Jay Sanderson of the Jewish Federation, and Lorri Jean, the CEO of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center.
Jose Martinez, also a staff writer for the newspaper, landed interviews with Herb Alpert, Stan Chambers, Wolfgang Puck, Susan Feniger and the Pink family of Pink’s Hot Dogs for the 65th Anniversary Issue. We are sure you will find the stories interesting and entertaining.
Founded 1946 Michael Villalpando Karen Villalpando Publishers 6720 MeLrOSe Ave. LOS ANgeLeS, CA 90038 MAiLiNg ADDreSS: P.O. BOx 36036 LOS ANgeLeS, CA 90036 PhONe: (323)933-5518 www.PArkLABreANewS.COM www.BeverLyPreSS.COM The Park Labrea News and Beverly Press are published every Thursday. Decreed newspapers of general circulation, entitled to publish legal advertising, Feb. 10, 1960 by Superior Court Order No 736637.
Edwin Folven has been on staff at the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press since 1996. Currently serving as the editor, Ed profiled “Los tres Moustachios” - three local politicians and friends: Heny Waxman, Zev Yaroslavsky and Mike Feuer. This indepth interview provides a closer look at how the men work together to get things done for our city. Max Rowe, our webmaster extraordinnaire, contributed his amazing artistic talents and designed the front cover of the 65th Anniversary Issue, showcasing iconic Los Angeles landmarks, like The Grove, the Farmers Market, the Hollywood Bowl, and the Griffith Observatory.
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
5 April 28, 2011
Thank You For 65 Years of Outstanding Public Service in Our Fairfax and Miracle Mile Community!
ZEV YAROSLAVSKY Los Angeles County Supervisor, 3rd District
MIKE FEUER Member of the California Assembly 42 District
HENRY A. WAXMAN U.S. Representative, 30th District
6 April 28, 2011
From the Publishers
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
t is with great pride that we dedicate our 65th Anniversary Issue today, April 28, 2011 to the readers and community we serve. “Our People, Our Places” is a snapshot of some of the names and noteworthy places that have shaped our neighborhood for the past 65 years. Since we took ownership in 1990, we’ve made significant improvements to the newspaper. We are now delivered with the Los Angeles Times to more than 13,000 subscribers every week. We strive to provide our readers with the best local news possible, and keep our features fresh and entertaining. Some of our former writers have moved on to prestigious publications, like Brian Boyé , our first editor, who is now the Fashion Director at Men’s Health magazine. He has written a special column for the 65th Anniversary Issue we are sure you’ll find enlightening. Another “graduate” is former reporter Ian Lovett, who gave us a solid year of investigative reporting from 2009 to October 2010. He is now on staff at the New York Times. Megan O’Neil worked as a staff writer for us before moving on to the Los Angeles Times Community Newspapers. She returned to provide us with a great profile of Rick Caruso. (page 16). We proudly announce a very special contributor, Chris Erskine. Thanks to “The Man of the House” Los Angeles Times columnist for providing us with an entertaining and humorous look at the city of the Angels. (page 8). Hanging in our office are three framed quotes, one by Mr. Erskine himself – “Newspapers are the Acoustic Guitars of Journalism.” Another quote, penned by an unknown author, is “Never Argue with Someone who Buys Ink by the Gallon.” And one that we frequently remind ourselves of, is “I Think it would be Fun to Run a Newspaper,” Charles Foster Kane. It is fun, in fact we like to say it’s an everyday adventure. After 21 years of working together, churning out a pertinent weekly newspaper, we’re happy to report we’re ready to do it for another 65 years. Thanks to our editors, staff writers and contributors – all trained journalists – who make it happen every week. And lastly, thank you to our wonderful daughters. Emily, who is currently studying journalism at the prestigious University of Missouri, and Rebecca, who is already a very talented writer and frequent contributor to the newspapers, you are the best two daughters any parents could ever hope for. We love you! We hope you enjoy our 65th Anniversary Issue, “Our People, Our Places.” Michael and Karen Villalpando Publishers
Tim's 65th_Layout 1 4/23/11 12:06 PM Page 8
8 April 28, 2011
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
There’s Chicago, new Orleans, and Miami, but for me
It’s L.A. Baby By Chris ErskinE
haven’t lived everywhere — just seems like it – but I’ve never found anything that quite compares to the urban neighborhoods in these parts. Quiet streets. Cape Cod mansions. Little ’50s-era apartment complexes with those exterior decorations that always look like swizzle sticks. Those units right behind Canter’s come to mind – so Old Hollywood that you expect Rita Hayworth to come trotting out and somersault into a millionaire’s convertible, legs and hair everywhere. There is a sense of place here – on Wilshire, in West Hollywood, Park Labrea. Sometimes you have to hunt for it a little, but there is a sense of place – a patina sorely lacking in other parts of town. Most important, there’s the throaty growl of street life. People live here. And sometimes, they actually leave their cars and walk. vvvv
haven’t lived everywhere, but I’m working on it. Chicago, Miami, New Orleans. Sure, I’ve bogged down in Los Angeles for two decades, but that’s only because I can’t seem to find anyplace better. I’m attracted to the littlest things about a city: easy conversation, whether strangers generally hold a door. Other parts of the nation seem so perpetually teed off, about the weather, or the sameness of the food, that they seem to take it out on one another, a form of urban warfare. Not so much Los Angeles, though we’ll make an exception for the barbarians who prowl our stadium parking lots and studio boardrooms. Like I said, easy conversation is one of those things that never registers in the quality-of-life surveys. A random chat at the coffee shop. An unsolicited “nice day, huh?” from the cafe table next to you. Maybe it’s the gentleness of the weather. Or maybe it’s just the realization that we’re at the edge of the country, the ocean licking at our toes. No place left to flee...let’s make the best of it. Whatever the reason, it works. vvvv
Rick Caruso, somewhat of a friend, would’ve turned the Farmers Market into parking or condos had the neighborhood folk not been willing to lie down in front of bulldozers. Maybe it’s just me, but the market always seems to draw a bigger crowd than the Grove. And why not? At the Grove, I see women who look like the Botox needle went a little too deep and maybe punctured the cerebral hemisphere (basically, the brain’s bonnet). Such a thing would be a delightful nirvana, one I shall never achieve. If I seem a little bitter, so be it. But at the Farmers Market, I see real people, from every corner of the globe – some of whom I’d like to send back. But these are people, real people, more attracted to the
At the Grove, I see women who look like the Botox needle went a little too deep and maybe punctured the cerebral hemisphere.
gritty old market than the sickly-slick Grove. They can smell a phony from 50 feet. As people watching goes, the market can’t be beat. There are the Midwesterners with the prom hair (the men). Or the Easterners with their windbreakers (the women). Over there, a table of teens. Like any teens, all they do is goof on each other and steal food off their neighbor’s plate. In this case, they are speaking Chinese. The Farmer’s Market — bread basket to the world.
very mile of Wilshire is a miracle, some more than others. This might be America’s most diverse street. There’s the Academy of Motion Pictures on one stretch, a 99-Cent Only Store on the next. L.A. has almost made a cottage industry of odd marriages. Monroe and Miller. Martin and vvvv Lewis. Vodka and vermouth. Nowhere, though, is the disparity more apparent than at ’ve always dreamed of a restaurant that 3rd and Fairfax. Look, let’s all admit it: The had one thing on the menu. Farmers Market, forever wed to the Grove, “What’ll you have?” the waitress will say. married sooooo beneath itself. “Think I’ll have the brisket,” I’ll say. Do opposites attract? Apparently, these “Good choice,” she’ll say and dart off for do, though left to his own devices I suspect the kitchen.
Yeah, a restaurant with just brisket on the menu is what I long to discover. That way, I have no remorse when my lunch companion orders something better. One thing. Brisket. That’s nirvana. Till then, I have Canter’s. This isn’t a menu, it’s a Magna Carta. I’ve seen complicated real estate deals with less boilerplate. It’s like reading the Bible – but with ads. The other day I was slurping down a starter of matzo ball soup at Canter’s, with a cup of coffee on the side — real coffee, almost nuclear. This particular pot was brewed in 1947. You can’t rush coffee like this. It needs to sit a while. Like oil.
Across from me is my daughter, my pride and joy, who works in West Hollywood these days and resides on the Westside. “You know,” I tell her, “I’d come all the way down here to have lunch with you.” “Dad, you just did,” she says. “Oh,” I say. “So what’ll you have,” asks the waitress. “Think I’ll have the brisket.” Chris Erskine is a columnist for the Los Angeles Times. His “Man of the House” and “Fan of the House” appear in the Home and Sports sections.
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
9 April 28, 2011
Tim's 65 round 2_Layout 1 4/22/11 3:06 PM Page 10
10 April 28, 2011
Former editor, now Men’s Health magazine fashion director, reflects on a few things he’s learned By Brian Boyé
n 1990, Michael and Karen Villalpando left the corporate newspaper world and took a chance on this weekly newspaper. A few months later, they took another chance, hiring me as the editor. I was a journalism grad a month out of school with nothing more than a few internships under my belt. They were a young couple searching for an entrepreneurial adventure. I was looking for a job and a reason to move to L.A. I learned as much during my years at the Park Labrea News/Beverly Press as I did earning my undergraduate degree. We were scrappy. We worked long hours. It was a great — sometimes dysfunctional — family. I flew by the seat of my pants (and made a few mistakes along the way). But I wouldn’t change a thing. It’s been two decades since I started my career at the Park Labrea News/Beverly Press. I’ve worked for a few other magazines since, both in L.A. and now in New York City. For the past 10 years, I’ve been an editor at Men’s Health magazine. With 12 million monthly readers in the U.S. and 44 international editions, it’s the largest, most successful men’s title in the world. There isn’t a day that I don’t reflect on where I started, and what I learned. To mark the 65th anniversary of the Park Labrea News/Beverly Press, I thought I’d look back at the three most important lessons I learned while working there. I try to remind myself of them often.
photo by Michael Villalpando
A younger Brian Boyé and publisher Karen Villalpando enjoy a glass of chardonnay at a star-studded event at Susan Feniger’s City restaurant in 1990.
RELATIONSHIPS MATTER Thanks to a dad in the oil business and a missionary mom, I’d bounced around a lot as a kid: Dallas, London, the Marshall Islands, Houston, Switzerland, New Orleans. I never lived more than a few years in one place. I considered that an advantage. Meeting new people and finding my way came easy to me. But I was transient at heart. I first understood the value of building relationships when I went to work there. Sure, I had to prove myself to my new bosses. But they had to prove themselves to the community. Michael and Karen had big plans. How could we make the paper more interesting and timely? What could we do to help local retailers drive business? Time to meet the neighbors.
We were scrappy. We worked long hours. It was a great — sometimes dysfunctional — family. I flew by the seat of my pants (and made a few mistakes along the way). But I wouldn’t change a thing.
One of the first sections they added was the Police Blotter. Michael and Karen told me simply, “Make it happen.” I had to convince the chief of the LAPD’s Wilshire Division to let me sit in his office once a week and rifle through crime reports. Over time, he became a great source for news (and I grew less nervous about starting my Mondays in the police station). I had to form relationships with all sorts of people I never imagined myself dealing with. I met with city councilmen and religious leaders. I talked to businessmen and community activists about on the controversial plans to expand the Farmers Market into what it is today. I had the opportunity to work with great writers, including Madeleine Shaner, who is still the publication’s theater critic. When we launched the Beverly Press, I quickly had to get to know a new set of business owners and city leaders. You take
photo courtesy of Men’s Health magazine
Brian Boyé, former editor for the Park Labrea News / Beverly Press, is currently fashion director of Men’s Health magazine.
the quotes you read in newspaper stories for granted, but they’re the result of nurturing contacts and building relationships. My work today requires knowledge and a little talent, but without strong relationships, none of that would matter. I learned that at the Park Labrea News and Beverly Press.
brushed Twitter and Facebook off as fun diversions. It’s easy enough to update your status or post photos from your vacation. But learning how to harness these tools to help create interest in a global brand like Men’s Health is more complex. Time to learn how. I’ll figure it out, like I did then. LEND A HAND
ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE Don’t know something? Learn it. Want something? Ask for it. It sounds simple but it’s the easiest thing to lose sight of. When I interviewed with Michael and Karen, they said the job would require a lot more than writing stories. Among other things, I’d also have to design the newspaper. I don’t remember if I lied and said I could do it, or confessed my ignorance and promised to learn. Either way, I had a month before my first day on the job. I went home, purchased the necessary computer program and studied like mad. Thirty days later I designed my first issue. At the time, technology was still somewhat of a curio-sity. Computers in the workplace were the exception. We were excited about our new fax machine. And I knew exactly one person with a cell phone: Michael Villalpando. Fast-forward to today and the business model of magazines and newspapers has changed. The stories we create for the print version of Men’s Health are just a fraction of the content we produce. I’ve spent the past several years learning how to translate what I do in print for television and the online version of our magazine. There’s new lingo, new tools, lots of video and a new way of thinking. With the advent of social media, business is changing again. A few years ago, I
In 1990, I was a just kid who needed an opportunity. Now I’m in a position to actually help young people get their start. Students and young professionals who want advice on how to get into publishing often contact me. It would be easy to ignore them. There’s never enough time in the day. I’m barraged with hundreds of pitches daily. I’m always facing a deadline and constantly traveling for work. But I never forget that Michael and Karen answered my letter. Because they did, an entire world was opened up to me. So, I respond to every one of those letters and phone calls. I offer advice, an informational interview or share contacts of others who might be able to help. I’ve had a few achievements in my career, but I’m most proud of being a mentor to people who are starting out in theirs. So – a special thank you to Michael and Karen for nurturing these wellrespected publications, and a lot of young talent. They started out as my employers and mentors. Now, I’m happy to call them my friends. The newspaper you’re reading now is a testament to their sheer tenacity and passion for this vibrant community. It’s also where I picked up a few lessons that have served me well.
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
11 April 28, 2011
12 April 28, 2011
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
A Century of
Searching for the GooD lIfe Jewish Federation’s Jay Sanderson looks back on his heritage in the city and abroad By RAfAel GueRReRo
ay Sanderson has experienced loss, anguish, pride and joy throughout his life on his way to becoming president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles. He was born in Boston and grew up in Rainbow Terrace, a public housing project in Salem and home to one of the most anti-semitic neighborhoods at the time. He was routinely threatened and beaten up because of his Jewish heritage. His father passed away when he was five years old and was raised by a single mother. He credits those hardships for helping him become who he is today. “I think we connect to our identity in times of crisis and success,” Sanderson said. “My life was filled with loss and it made me understand and connect with my heritage in a very powerful way.” Sanderson was very involved with his synagogue during his youth and was the president of a number of Jewish groups in high school and college. He even went on a trip to Israel with his high school. “It was the pluses and minuses of being Jewish,” Sanderson said. “I was beaten up and I walked the streets of Jerusalem as a teenager. The Jewish-American experience is my experience and I’ve seen every element of Jewish life; good, bad and indifferent.” After high school, Sanderson went to Syracuse University and attended the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. He graduated in 1979 and decided to move to Los Angeles in pursuit of a career in the television industry. He worked as an independent writer and producer of documentaries early on, but also did a lot of non-profit work. He operated what is now known as Phoenix House in Venice, one of the largest drug rehab programs in the country. During his time there, he met a psychoanalyst who would later become his wife. “I was running the program and she came to work there,” Sanderson recalled. He and his wife, Laura, have been married nearly 30 years and have two children, Jonah and Isabelle. In 1989, Sanderson began to work at the Jewish Television Network (JTN). He became the CEO and, under his direction, JTN substantially increased its audience and expanded its distribution. Two of JTN’s biggest projects were released while Sanderson had the reins of the company. “I’m one of the luckiest people you will ever meet,” Sanderson said. “I’ve been able to do projects that I care about and have made a tremendous impact. They are projects that have a Jewish soul but a universal appeal.”
agencies, such as Jewish Family Services, Jewish Vocational Services, Jewish Free Loan, and Jewish Big Brothers and Sisters. But Sanderson felt it was time for the Jewish Federation to grow and reach out to the community. “We had many central relationships with these agencies but they did not allow us to really forge new ones,” Sanderson said. “The agencies were like our children, but now our children are off to law school and in some cases doing better than we are.” One of the programs the Jewish Federation has foucused on to reach out to the community is Koreh L.A., one of the city’s largest literaphoto by Rafael Guerrero cy programs. It has trained The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles president Jay Sanderson is preparing for the more than 10,000 volunteers organization’s centennial anniversary celebration. and worked with more than Sanderson served as an executive pro- Network.com. The site was the only fully 22,000 students at 150 Los Angeles ducer and helped raise $4 million for “The Jewish video website on the Internet and Unified School District schools. Jewish Americans”. The miniseries was attracted more than 1.75 million unique “Thousands of young people are learndirected by David Grubin and narrated by visitors. ing how to read and how to love to read Liev Schreiber. It traced American Jewish Sanderson also helped produce “Worse because of Koreh L.A.” Sanderson said. history back 354 years to when Jewish than War”, a documentary that was broadThe Jewish Federation is also celebratimmigrants first arrived in New cast on PBS in 2010, based on Daniel ing its centennial anniversary. Sanderson Amsterdam, which later became New Goldhagen’s book that gave an said the organization is working hard to York. Sanderson said the project took analyses of the genocides during keep with its tradition of looking out for five years to develop and the six-hour the Holocaust, but also in other both the Jewish community and the comfinal product premiered on places like Rwanda, munity as a whole. PBS in 2008 with three Guatemala and “When you’re an organization that has two-hour episodes. The Cambodia. raised and contributed hundreds of milminiseries was one of “For years people lions of dollars to the community over Sanderson’s proudest brought Holocaust one-hundred years, it’s a testimony to the achievements at related projects to leadership,” Sanderson said. “We look JTN. me,” Sanderson said. back to the last hundred years of success “It’s very hard to “If I was going to do and impact, but more importantly look beat ‘The Jewish something, it needed forward to the next hundred years.” Americans’,” Santo be different. On Oct. 23, the Jewish Federation will derson said. “It told ‘Worse than War’ attempt to take more than 1,000 Jewish the story of an immiused the Holocaust and non-Jewish community members on “The Jewish-American grant group that a starting point, its Centennial Mission to Israel. Travelers experience is my experience as came to this country but it was really will visit Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Beit and I’ve seen every element and the tension of about genocide as a Shemesh and Caesaria and will meet with what it means to be a whole.” local leaders to see much of the work the of Jewish life; good, bad member of any Almost a year Jewish Federation has done with Israel. and indifferent.” immigrant group and before “Worse than There will also be other activities planned to be an American.” War” aired, to match each visitor’s interests and will -Jay Sanderson He recalled going Sanderson was culminate with a Community Gala. President of the Jewish Federation of to a sushi restaurant selected as the new Sanderson’s accomplishments are many after the miniseries president of the since he started out in that Salem housing Greater Los Angeles premiered and overJewish Federation. project, but he remains humble. He said he hearing a family He was selected in is the guy in the elevator who says hello talking and arguing 2009 after the Jewish and strikes up a conversation and has about the series and turning around to dis- Federation had conducted a national made sure his children have seen that side cover it was an Italian-American family. search. of him. “That was the idea,” Sanderson said. “At one point I wasn’t sure I was going “You can make a living or you can make “To tell the Jewish story, but really tell the to get the job,” Sanderson said. a life,” Sanderson said. “I hope, through immigrant story. It really was the ability But he did get the job and has been at my work and my role modeling, my chilto tell a story that resonates with every- the helm for 14 months. One of the first dren will learn that it’s important to make body but comes from a place that is major things Sanderson wanted to do at a life. To do meaningful work and be a uniquely mine.” the Jewish Federation was to get it away part of the community is as important as Sanderson’s other accomplishments from being an “umbrella” agency and recognizing that just because you have while at JTN included leading the net- more involved with the community. food on the table doesn’t mean you can work’s broadband initiative, JewishTV The Jewish Federation funded several forget those who don’t.”
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
13 April 28, 2011
Hollywood Toyota was the First Toyota Dealership in the USA and is a leader in green technology as one of the first dealers in LA to install charging stations. The Prius has surpassed the 2 million mark in sales and is celebrating 10 years as the number one selling hybrid vehicle.
6000 Hollywood Blvd. â€˘ Hollywood, CA 90028 1-800-293-3527 www.hollywoodtoyota.com
14 April 28, 2011
For the Love of Dodger
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
Former manager, Tommy Lasorda, reflects on coaching, Dodgers, and life at the plate By Rafael GueRReRo
f the living legends of the Los Angeles Dodgers, there are two names synonymous with the team: Vin Scully and Tommy Lasorda. Who can forget the visual image of Lasorda, the man who coined the phrase, “I bleed Dodger blue,” leaping from the dugout wearing his number 2 jersey with arms raised and fists clenched after Kirk Gibson hit the iconic game-winning homerun in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series. It was Lasorda, whose exuberant displays of affection, made it okay for grown men and professional athletes to hug one another. The former manager led the boys in blue for 20 years and compiled a record of 1,599-1,439, good enough for the 13th most wins by a manager in Major League Baseball (MLB) history, no small feat in a league that has been around since 1869. He managed in 61 postseason games, fifth all-time behind other greats like Joe Torre (138), Bobby Cox (132), Tony LaRussa (110) and Casey Stengel (63). Lasorda led the Dodgers to four National League pennants, eight division titles and World Series wins in 1981 and 1988. Lasorda’s love for baseball started early on, while growing up in Pennsylvania. He recalled the first moment he fell in love with the game and the idea of becoming a major league ballplayer while listening to them on the radio. “When I was a little guy, I always cherished the players,” Lasorda said. “When we used to walk down the streets people would have the games on the radio and I thought that was something special to be a baseball player.” Lasorda enjoyed playing the game at the local ballpark and routinely risked his neck for a chance to do so. “When I had chores at home, I’d go upstairs and sneak out of the window and go to the ballpark to play baseball all day long,” Lasorda said. “I knew my father would be upset and what would happen when I got home, but to me it was worth it to be able to play baseball all day.” Lasorda cashed in his dream to play baseball when he was 16 years old, signing a minor league contract to pitch for the Philadelphia Phillies. It was an interesting and anxious time for Lasorda. “I didn’t know what was going to happen to me when I signed the contract,” Lasorda said. “I was a 16-year-old kid who had never been away from home for that long of a time.” Before Lasorda ever made his pitching debut, the seeds for his future were planted during a 1950 bus ride in Vero Beach while Lasorda was in spring training with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Al Campanis, who later became the general manager for the Dodgers from 1968 to 1987, was working as a scout for the team and also riding on
photos courtesy of Colin Gunderson, LA Dodgers PR
Tommy Lasorda sends Kirk Gibson home.
photos courtesy of Colin Gunderson, LA Dodgers PR
“When I was a little guy, I always cherished the players,” said Tommy Lasorda legendary former manager of the Dodgers.
the bus. “He called me over and said, ‘I like your attitude. Someday I will be in a position to hire you,’” Lasorda recalled. “I said, ‘okay.’ I mean this guy was just a scout but, wouldn’t you know it, years later that’s exactly what he did.” Lasorda made his MLB debut in 1954 for the Dodgers, but that proved to be the highlight of his playing career. He compiled an 0-4 record with a 6.52 ERA in parts of three MLB seasons with the Dodgers and the Kansas City Athletics. He was part of the 1955 Dodgers World Championship that took home Brooklyn’s only World Series title in six tries. After his playing career was over, Lasorda was not ready to walk off into the sunset. “I wanted to stay in baseball,” Lasorda said. He became a scout with the team in 1961 and four years later got his first managerial job managing the team’s minor league team in Pocatello, Idaho. He moved on to Ogden, Utah the next year
and led that team to three Pioneer League championships before moving on to the team’s Triple A team in Spokane in 1969, managing there for three years and one more when the team switched their farm club to Albuquerque in 1972. Lasorda won the Pacific Coast League championship that year and he would go on to manage 75 players who went on to play in the Majors during his time as a minor league manager. “I loved every minute of it,” Lasorda said. “I wasn’t making much money but I really enjoyed managing. I got an opportunity to prepare these young men to pitch in the Major Leagues right out of high school.” In 1973, Lasorda made the move to the big club to become the Dodgers third base coach, a position he would hold until 1976 when longtime manager Walter Alston retired after 22 seasons with the team. It was now Lasorda’s turn to take the reins and lead the team, a position he was more than comfortable taking, helped by the fact
that 17 of the 25 players on the 1977 roster played for Lasorda when he managed in the minor leagues. As for filling the shoes of one of the greatest managers in the history of the game, Lasorda took a different approach to dealing with the expectations. He recalled one of the first interviews he conducted after taking the manager job with the Dodgers and being asked how he would fill the shoes vacated by Alston’s departure. “I said, ‘I’m worried about the guy who is going to have to replace me,’” Lasorda said. “That’s how I looked at it. I chose to look ahead at the guy who would follow me and all of a sudden I felt superior. If I had looked behind me, I may have been intimidated and it probably would have had a negative effect.” In his first year as the Dodgers skipper, Lasorda led the 1977 team to a 98-64 record and the N.L. Pennant. Lasorda won the AP and UPI Manager of the Year Award that year. In the World Series, the Dodgers fell to the New York Yankees in six games, a series famous for Reggie Jackson’s threehomerun performance in Game 6 to clinch the title for the Yankees and pen his nickname, “Mr. October.” During his 20 years with the team, Lasorda coached more than 3,000 games and countless more players. While he would not pick a favorite team, there was one player he called his favorite. “When I took over the team, I told Reggie Smith that I needed him,” Lasorda said. “He was a giant of a player and so full of talent. I really enjoyed watching him play.” Smith hit .307 with 32 homeruns and 87 RBIs in 1977. He also hit three homeruns in the World Series. During his five years with the Dodgers, Smith hit 97 of his 314 career homeruns and 331 of his 1,092 career RBIs. The 1988 season is one season nearly all Dodgers fans will never forget. While most will remember the epic Kirk Gibson home-
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The man behind The Grove continues to build and develop at his own pace By Megan O’neil
ew work harder than Rick Caruso. The rock-star real estate developer – who in some circles generates as much excitement as the A-list celebrities who frequent his signature properties – is synonymous with the complex commercial projects he has designed over the last two decades. Perhaps he inherited that work ethic from his father. “The man is 89 years old and he goes to work every day,” Caruso said of entrepreneur Henry Caruso, who continues to manage several car dealerships in Long Beach. “He taught us to do what we believe in, what we are passionate about. I am a big believer in that. I try and stress that with my kids.” Similarly, the 52-year-old Caruso has no intention of slowing down. He recently broke ground on a new mix-use development at Burton Way and La Cienega Boulevard, while simultaneously announcing plans to expand The Americana at Brand in Glendale by 140,000 square feet. However, the success Caruso enjoys is only part of the story – the Los Angeles Business Journal named him to its 2010 list of 50 Wealthiest Angelenos. He is transforming the local retail scene while also putting his stamp on civic life through his work with several city commissions and philanthropic organizations. With his name bandied about as a possible 2012 mayoral candidate, Caruso’s most important public role may be yet to come. One of three siblings, Caruso was raised in west Los Angeles where he attended Good Shepherd Catholic School in Beverly Hills and Harvard School (now known as Harvard-Westlake) in Studio City. His father, Henry Caruso, in the 1960s founded Dollar Rent-A-Car, growing it into one of the largest rental car companies in the world. The younger Caruso’s first job involved a bucket and a squeegee. “It was good learning experience,” Caruso said. “I don’t remember getting paid a whole lot but I worked washing cars every summer.” After earning a business degree from the University of Southern California in 1980, and a law degree from Pepperdine University in 1983, Caruso went on to practice corporate finance law at Finley Kumble Wagner. In 1988, he made his leap into real estate. Caruso’s two-person team – which consisted of himself and an assistant – cobbled together their maiden venture, a duplex at 1700 Midvale Ave. in Westwood. “At the time, I was the gardener and the painter and the maintenance man and everything else,” Caruso said. “I sort of learned how to fix up properties.”
photo by Raul Roa/Los Angeles Times
“I operate very hungry. I don’t ever…sit around and think, ‘Now I have made it, life is easier,’” Caruso said. “We work really hard around here and we try to be really creative.”
His first major retail development was the Loehmann’s store, just south of the Beverly Center at the corner of La Cienega and San Vicente boulevards. The project launched Caruso Affiliates as a force in the commercial retail side of the business, and a dozen more followed. “It just went from one project to another,” Caruso said. “I operate very hungry. I don’t ever…sit around and think, ‘Now I have made it, life is easier.’ We work
“At the time, I was the gardener and the painter and the maintenance man and everything else. I sort of learned how to fix up properties.” -Rick Caruso
really hard around here and we try to be really creative.” The Commons at Calabasas, Promenade at Westlake, Encino Marketplace and The Americana at Brand in Glendale are all Caruso Affiliated properties. But perhaps no neighborhood in Los Angeles bears the Caruso mark more than the Fairfax district. When planning for The Grove began in the late 1990s, critics derided it for what they described as a contrived aesthetic reminiscent of an amusement park. They were also concerned about the future of
the Famers Market, which has occupied the site at Third Avenue and Fairfax for 7 decades. How would the 1930’s landmark survive next to the shiny, new The Grove? Now, ten years later, the two properties are not just surviving, but thriving off one another’s attractions. The Grove teems with edgy restaurants and hip boutiques, while the Farmers Market continues to be a bustling meeting place. With the support of then-City Councilman John Ferraro, Caruso navigated the development through City Hall, and in 2002 it opened to great fanfare. Now, The Grove is woven into the fabric of the neighborhood, Caruso said. “The Grove has become part of the vocabulary of Los Angeles,” Caruso said. “When you say you are going to The Grove, [people] know where you are going. There are very few places that have that kind of brand, and impact. It is a place where people meet and dine and hang out and spend time with their kids and go shopping. It has effectively become a little mini-downtown for this area.” The complex is one of the most productive shopping centers in the country, according to Caruso Affiliated, drawing 17 million annual visitors. While the comparisons to the happiest place on earth are ubiquitous, they are not unwelcome. “I am always happy to be compared to Disneyland,” Caruso said. “They are a phenomenal operator, it is a global brand. They have had incredible success. They provide a family atmosphere.”
Now, with the economy taking an upturn, new projects are on the horizon. Named 8500 Burton Way, the mix-use complex at Burton Way and La Cienega Boulevard will feature 88 apartments and a Trader Joe’s store. The density and the highly educated demographic is what continues to draw him back to the area, Caruso said. “It is just a very, very productive area,” Caruso said. “We understand the people who are living here, so the residential [component] we feel strongly about because we know the area is very desirable to live in. And it is going to be desirable particularly for young professionals to live in.” Civic responsibility and a mayoral run? Caruso may not have had anything to do with the construction of the new Los Angeles Police Department headquarters downtown, but he certainly had a hand in shaping the nearly 10,000-strong force inside. He served on the Los Angeles Police Commission from 2001 to 2005, during which time he played an instrumental role in cleaning up the department in the wake of the Rampart scandal. Most notably, Caruso recruited Chief William Bratton, who went on the reduce crime to levels not seen in decades. It was one of several civic roles Caruso would take on, starting at the age of 25. Others included stints as a Department of Water and Power commissioner, and as a Los Angeles Coliseum commissioner, a title he still holds. Caruso is also known for his generosity to his alma mater, USC. He and his
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photo courtesy of The Grove
Developer Rick Caruso stands at The Grove, just one of several successful development projects he has built over the years.
wife Tina – parents of four children – have committed $6 million toward a $35-million Catholic center currently under construction at the university. “I think public service is a great, honorable thing to do,” Caruso said. “And I think everybody has an obligation to give back. And you get to choose the forum you want to do it through – whether you are giving your money, whether you are giving your time, or whether you are giving your talent. I try to do all three. I just think it is something responsible residents should be doing.” A run for mayor is a real possibility. “It is something I am seriously considering,” Caruso said. This isn’t the first time the developer has flirted with City Hall. Political watchdogs also tossed around his name during the 2008 campaign cycle. The potential candidate described a current “void of leadership.” “There really hasn’t been a leader that has set down a vision of priorities,” Caruso said. “You can’t run any organization, public or private, unless somebody is saying, ‘This is where we are going and follow me.’” If he were to run, at the top of his to-do list would be fostering economic growth and a higher quality of life, Caruso said. “You’ve got to ask what are the priorities,” Caruso said. “It certainly is creating
17 April 28, 2011 more jobs. It is creating more revenue. You have to get the city’s budget in balance, improve parks for kids. A lot of it has to do with making the city more livable, more vibrant.” In the meantime, he is focused on, among other things, expanding The Americana on Brand, and planning a year’s worth of celebrations to mark the 10th anniversary of The Grove. “We are very grateful for the community as a whole for adopting us and making us part of their town,” Caruso said. “We really appreciate it.”
Discover Now at the L.A. Zoo
Hours: 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. daily • Location: Griffith Park, Intersection of Ventura (134) and Golden State (5) freeways Telephone: 323-644-4200 • Tickets and Information: Visit our website at www.lazoo.org
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I love Los Angeles,” Alpert declared. “I was born here, I’m a native. Unfortunately, I’ve seen us ruin it a bit in the name of progress. We’ve taken a lot of the memories away.
photo by Andreas Neumann
of “The Lonely Bull” on the air. “It was one of those moments where it was out of control,” Albert said. And just like that, the Herb Alpert juggernaut was off and running. Jazz legend, Miles “Going Places”. Davis once said of Alpert’s playing and of his As a record mogul, Albert and business signature sound, “You don’t have to hear but partner Jerry Moss founded A&M Records in three notes before you know it’s Herb 1962, which recorded such artists as Liza Alpert.” Minelli, Janet Jackson, George Benson, When asked what his life might have been Chuck Mangione, Chet Baker, The like without that fateful trip to Mexico, Alpert Carpenters, The Police, Joe Cocker, Sheryl joked he might have become an architect. Crow, Peter Frampton, and others. The great Louis Armstrong, whom Before Alpert set his sights on a Alpert deemed as not only a great musimusic career, he was drafted into the cian, but also a great innovator, influarmy, and there he was able to polish enced the classically trained Alpert, his chops in the army band. who confesses to being a jazz musician “That was a real eye opener for me,” at heart. Alpert said. “I was the first trumpet Other influences included Miles player in the junior high school orchesDavis, Charlie Parker and Clifford tra, and then we had a little trio and got Brown. a lot of attention. But when I was draft“There are only twelve notes so you ed in the army, I was sent to band try to scramble up those notes and try to school in Fort Knox, Kentucky and I personalize the music,” Alpert said. met twelve trumpet players from all “For a moment, I did try to emulate over the United States, and they were Louis Armstrong, but then I didn’t all, for the most part, better than I was. think anybody would be interested in They played higher, faster, louder. [I listening to that because he could do it realized] that if I was ever going to be much better. When I heard Les Paul’s a professional musician, I had to come “How High the Moon”, it was a numup with my own identity.” ber one record and he took his guitar After his time in the service, Alpert and overdubbed on top of it several album cover by A&M Records tried his hand at acting, but eventually settled on pursuing a career in music. Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass’ most popular times and had this very unique sound. While attending the University of release, the fourth album, “Whipped Cream and And I tried doing that with the trumpet and came up with this sound, which Southern California in the 1950s, he Other Delights”, debuted in 1965. was the genesis of the Tijuana Brass was a member of the USC Trojan Sound.” Marching Band for two years. In Alpert and Moss formed their own record 1956, he was credited as one of the trumpet song “The Lonely Bull“. He personally fundplayers in the film “The Ten ed the production of the record as a single, company to release and control his own and it immediately became a Top Ten hit in music. Commandments”. “When we formed A&M, we didn’t have “I was earning a pretty good living playing 1962. He put together his debut album, “The on weekends, [playing] parties and wed- Lonely Bull” by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana any big aspirations other than to put out a record,” Alpert stated. “The name A&M was dings,” Alpert stated. “I didn’t have my sights Brass. “It was a matter of three or four days and our third choice. Our first choice for the comset on being a professional musician yet. That that record was on the charts,” Alpert pany was Carnival Records, but there was came later when I met Lou Adler and we started writing songs together. We were recalled. “We were getting calls from distrib- prior usage of that. We submitted five other working for a record company and I had the utors from all over the world wanting to han- names and I think A&M was our third choice and that was the only one that cleared, so that pleasure of meeting and working with Sam dle it. All of a sudden, my life changed.” People were so infatuated by the Alpert was the name that we stuck with.” Cooke. I learned a lot from him. At that point In 1966, the company’s headquarters were it really piqued my interest about making sound that in Washington, DC, the single’s Brecords and recording and seeing if I could side, “Acapulco 1922”, became a smash moved to the historic Charlie Chaplin Studios come up with something that was worth lis- when the station accidentally played it instead at 1416 North La Brea Ave in Hollywood.
With multiple number-one hits, Grammies and platinum albums, Herb Alpert knows his music and reflects on life in the Fairfax Area BY JOSE MARTINEZ
usic legend Herb Alpert, who grew up in the neighborhood, knew at a very early age his destiny was to become a musician. As a shy eight year old, he found solace in his trusty trumpet. “I felt that passion when I first got a good sound out of the trumpet,” Alpert said. “I was very shy at the time and it was making a lot of noise and I liked that. It was speaking for me. It took a long time before I made any sense of it, but I was very fortunate that I stuck with it.” Born in Los Angeles on March 31, 1935, Alpert’s father was a tailor and an amateur mandolin player. His mother played the violin and his brother David, the drums. The youngest of three children, Alpert’s roots are firmly planted in the Fairfax District. A graduate of Fairfax High School, Alpert also attended USC and co-founded A&M Records, headquartered for years on La Brea Avenue near Sunset Boulevard. While Alpert admits he hasn’t been back to Fairfax High School in years, he does get nostalgic about his old stomping grounds. “I love Los Angeles,” Alpert said. “I was born here, I’m a native. Unfortunately, I’ve seen us ruin it a bit in the name of progress. We’ve taken a lot of the memories away. When I was growing up, there was Gilmore Stadium and Gilmore Field, and the old Pan Pacific where they had rodeos. It has turned into another place. [Back then] it was comfortable with friendly people. You didn’t have to lock your door all the time. It was nice and clear, pre-smog. You could see the mountains all around the city, every day. It was beautiful.” A music industry luminary, Alpert has scored five No. 1 hits, released nearly 50 records, won eight Grammys, and earned 14 platinum and 15 gold albums. In the 1960s, only The Beatles and Elvis Presley had greater album sales than Alpert’s Tijuana Brass, which sold 13 million records in 1966 alone. Some memorable releases included “Whipped Cream (and Other Delights)” and
tening to.” It was during a trip to Tijuana, Mexico that Alpert’s life would forever change. While attending a bullfight, he happened to hear a mariachi band play. Taken by the unique sound, Alpert was inspired to find a way to musically express what he felt while watching the crowd roar with rousing fanfare upon hearing the musicians wail on their brass instruments. Alpert adapted his trumpet style to the mariachi sound, mixed in crowd cheers and other noises for ambiance, and named his
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press “We felt like we overstepped our bounds because we only had a few employees,” Alpert recalled, “but as it turned out, we actually ran out of space.” Over the years, A&M Records was home to a who’s who of music greats, but ask Alpert for a favorite and he doesn’t hesitate. “I guess The Carpenters because they had so much success,” Alpert said. “I signed them in 1970. For the first year they didn’t really do too much. They put out an album and a few singles, but they weren’t really accepted by the public. And I had this song that I was going to record called “Close To You” and I gave it to Richard Carpenter. He loved it and recorded it, and that was their breakthrough record.” And just like that Alpert was heralded as a music genius. “I went from ‘why did you sign them?’ to somebody who was brilliant,” Alpert recalled. “But they had the goods. She had an amazing voice and really communicated with people. And Richard had the ability to pick the right songs and had a flair for arranging. You put those elements together and you have something special.” In 1987, Alpert and Moss agreed to sell A&M Records to PolyGram Records for a reported $500 million. Alpert is very low-key about the sale and his monumental payday. “We were just trying to put out good records and give the public their money’s worth,” Alpert said. “In the period that we started, there were a lot of companies that would have one-hit singles and then fill an album with a bunch of duds. We didn’t do that. We tried to make every cut important. We were music people that were passionate about music.” And that passion continues to drive Alpert today. He never goes a day without playing his trumpet. “There is a certain satisfaction and energy that comes from playing the horn, a feeling that comes when I am really in my element,” Alpert said. “I am passionate about what I am doing. I am just playing what comes out. I try to stay conscious of things that are happening in the spontaneity of the moment.” And the power of the moment extends to other modes of
65th Anniversary expression as well for Alpert. A prolific painter, sculptor, philanthropist and theatrical producer, Alpert has helped bring to Broadway Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer prize-winning “Angels in America,” as well as plays by Arthur Miller, David Mamet, August Wilson and others. “It’s the same with any creative form of self expression,” Alpert said. “If it isn’t feeling good, I feel all stuffed up and not satisfied with it. But when it resolves itself, bang! I get that good feeling again.” Alpert also gets that good feeling through the Herb Alpert Foundation that focuses on arts and education. “We like to help worthy organizations that inspire kids without prejudice. It feels like the powers-that-be don’t really recognize the arts. They think of it as extra-curricular activity, but it is a key ingredient in developing total human beings and in bringing the world closer together.” Teaming up with his wife, Grammy-winning singer Lani Hall, whom he married in 1973, the duo recently released “I Feel You”, which features several reinterpreted pop classics spanning four decades, likeVan Morrison’s “Moondance”, Peggy Lee’s “Fever”, as well as The Beatles “Here Comes the Sun” and “Blackbird”. For Alpert, who also owns jazz restaurant Vibrato Grill Jazz in Bel Air, the secret to his success is simple. “The running theme of artists making music worth listening to is honesty,” Alpert said. “I play for the pleasure of playing. It’s something I have been doing since the age of eight. It’s not a chore. It’s something I look forward to do, and there’s always something to learn. You never get to the place where you’re totally satisfied as a musician.” Still touring, Alpert admits while he loves playing, he’s not crazy about packing and unpacking. Yet, whether it’s through his music, painting or sculpting, he relishes the connection with the public. “I think it’s an individual thing, that’s what makes art so beautiful,” Alpert said. “What you receive is a gift. I can’t talk anybody into liking my music or piece of art. It’s a very personal experience.”
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photo by Andreas Neumann
Music legend, Herb Alpert, and his wife, Grammy winning singer Lani Hall, recently released a new album, “I Feel You”, which is the couples first studio album in ten years.
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& STaR GaZe Griffith Observatory A Shining Star On the Hill By Rafael GueRReRO
hat began as Griffith J. Griffith’s dream to make science and astronomy more accessible to the public became the iconic observatory that still serves that purpose to this day. Plans for the fundamental exhibits began in 1933 and included a 38-foot diameter model of a section of the moon and the 12-inch Zeiss refracting telescope that remains in place today. The dedication of the Griffith Observatory took place on May 14, 1935, at which time the Griffith Trust transferred ownership of the building to the City of Los Angeles’ Department of Parks and Recreation, which has operated the park to this day. When Dr. Ed C. Krupp became the director of the Griffith Observatory in 1974, it was still a great place for people to gather, but it had begun to show its age. “If you had experienced the observatory in the 60s or 70s, you would realize that it was still a wonderful building,” Krupp said. “But by then it was starting to wear down.” The process of upgrading the observatory had very modest beginnings. Krupp started by overhauling the Hall of Science exhibits during the 70s. He would eventually introduce the first personal computers and first website for a city-owned property. “We thought about improvements on a relatively small scale back then,” Krupp said.
photo by Justin Daniels
The Mural room at the Observatory leads into the new Samuel Oschin Planetarium.
“You would just look around and say, ‘What do we really need here?’” Krupp said. He worked closely with Debra Griffith, wife of Griffith’s grandson Harold, to form the Friends of the Observatory (FOTO) in 1978. FOTO, a non-profit, membership photo courtesy of the City Employees Club of Los Angeles based organization that supports the observatory, became a means to gain direct pub- Dr. E.C. Krupp, director of the Griffith Observatory, oversees the renovation. lic support to improve the observatory. A master plan was completed in 1990 that laid out details on the renovation and expansion of the Griffith Observatory. They secured $18.6 million in bond money to help with the renovation and the ball started rolling. “It wasn’t nearly enough to cover the cost of the renovation,” Krupp said. “But once there was real money on the table, others began taking notice.” The cost of the renovation came to $93 million with FOTO raising more than $30 million and playing a major role in securing the rest of the money. Planning for the actual work that would go into the renovation of the observatory spanned seven years with a primary focus on historic preservation and restoration. All of the historic spaces were to be retained and the exterior and interior materials and features were to be restored. This included the copper domes, exterior concrete, windows and exhibits. The biggest project was updating the 67-year old planetarium. The new design called for the state-of-the-art Samuel Oschin Planetarium. The observatory officially closed down for the renovations on Jan. 6, 2002 even though construction would not begin until October. “We had to empty the building before the construction could start,” Krupp said. Staff and movers removed the old sound system, control panel and other equipment. They removed the 600 seats in the planetarium theater that were installed in 1964, which was followed by the demolition of the interior projection dome. During the construction, all of the exhibits were moved to the east side of the observatory near the zoo. “You could see things happening and taking shape before your eyes during the construction,” Krupp said. Three years later, the 300-seat Samuel Oschin Planetarium theater was finished. After other additions like the Gravity Staircase and renovations to improve access to the features of the observatory, it reopened to the public in November 2006. “Seeing it all happen so elegantly and the public’s response to it was great,” Krupp said. “The things available here are not available anywhere elsewhere.” The new planetarium features an see “Observatory” on page 61
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Park Labrea News/Beverly Press state and federal levels,” Feuer added. “On transportation, [Congressman Waxman] has been very instrumental in effectuating Measure R. Whenever there is a significant issue where the federal government can play a meaningful role, Congressman Waxman is always there to make sure it happens.” Waxman said another accomplishment he is very proud of is the reduction in air pollution in Los Angeles. “Air pollution issues have always been very important to me,” Waxman said.
“Henry is our ‘go to guy’ whenever there is a problem. On community issues, such as transportation and especially healthcare issues, he has been a real partner with me and the County of Los Angeles.” photo by Edwin Folven
Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, Congressman Henry Waxman and State Assemblymember Mike Feuer show solidarity.
Los Tres Moustachios The three political musketeers join forces to govern the county, country and state
By Edwin FolvEn
ver the last three decades, Congressman Henry Waxman, Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and State Assemblymember Mike Feuer have come to symbolize the face of leadership in the local area. The three legislators have been friends for years and share many commonalities, including their Jewish heritage and the fact that they are all longtime residents of the community. While Feuer attended Harvard, both Yaroslavsky and Waxman are graduates of the University of California, Los Angeles. In addition, they are instantly recognizable for their distinctive mustaches. When they get together, the conversation turns to past trips to Israel and a common love of classical music — all three are big fans of the L.A. Philharmonic. As longtime residents, they reminisce about places like Canter’s Deli and other business that have been located on Fairfax Avenue for decades. All three also share a strong desire to improve life for their constituents, which is why they became public servants. The fact that they have a close working relationship has directly benefitted the people who live and work here, and a look at some of their accomplishments shows their passion and the impact they have had on the community. Waxman, who represents the 30th Congressional District, splits most of his time between Los Angeles and Washington D.C. Waxman has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 1974, and has championed many causes at the national level, including healthcare reform, environmental protection, tobacco regulation, and assistance for people with HIV and AIDS.
He said transportation, air pollution and universal access to healthcare are among the most important issues facing people today, and added that he is extremely proud of his accomplishments in those areas. Waxman works closely with Feuer and Yaroslavsky on many issues, and said that cohesiveness enables many things to be accomplished. One of the main priorities for the legislators is the Westside Subway Extension, which, when completed, will run underneath Wilshire Boulevard to Santa Monica. They agree that the subway will be one of the most significant developments affecting people for decades to come. In the 1980s, Waxman said he supported the original subway line that now ends at Western Avenue, but did not intitially support a subway running farther west underneath Wilshire Boulevard following a methane gas explosion in the Fairfax District in 1985. “I have always supported public transportation and mass transit to meet the requirement that people drive wherever they want to go,” Waxman said. “In the mid-1980s, I supported a plan by thenmayor Tom Bradley, but became concerned about safety in the area around Park La Brea because of heavy methane gas concentrations. That concern has been allayed by an independent commission, and we made sure the federal law would allow the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to design their plan.” Yaroslavsky, who is a staunch supporter of the subway, passionately campaigned for Measure R, the half-cent countywide sales tax that is generating money for transportation projects such as the subway. At the state level, Feuer built coalitions and authored legislation that allowed Measure
R to be placed on the ballot in 2008. Together, the legislators cleared many of the hurdles, but many remain, such as identifying funding for the project. They are committed to doing whatever they can to ensure the subway becomes a reality. Yaroslavsky and Feuer credited Waxman for his efforts. “Henry is our ‘go to guy’ whenever there is a problem,” Yaroslavsky said. “On community issues, such as transportation and especially healthcare issues, he has been a real partner with me and the County of Los Angeles. He is a very influential member of Congress, people in the White House listen to him, people in the legislature listen to him, and he has been a huge resource for us on many issues.” Feuer added that the partnership that exists between the legislators is critical to getting problems solved. “We work very closely at the county,
Zev Yaroslavsky Los Angeles County Supervisor
“From my very first time in Congress, I was on the committee dealing with the Clean Air Act, and was concerned about providing the greatest opportunity for L.A. and California to clean up the heavy pollution that we have had for some period of time. The Clean Air Act did a lot to keep the pressure on and reduce the air pollution in places like Los Angeles.” Waxman also said healthcare issues are of dire importance to Los Angeles residents. He strongly supported the Affordable Care Act, which was passed last year, and previously helped establish the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Act, which provides funding and other support for programs that help people with HIV and AIDS. “I have been a strong advocate of healthcare, especially to prevent diseases,” Waxman said. “I support the public healthcare program for seniors, and laws that ensure more people are covered. I am proud we passed the national healthcare bill, which is supposed to be fully activated by 2014. We have an opportunity to provide healthcare to millions of people who otherwise may not be covered.” Waxman said the local neighborhood’s
photo by Edwin Folven/photo art by Tim Posada
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Park Labrea News/Beverly Press vibrancy and diversity are what make it the heart of the city. He said he is encouraged by growth in the Fairfax District and along the Miracle Mile, and added that he believes the economic growth will continue into the future. “This area is always what I considered to be my base,” Waxman added. “The area has changed a lot. We now have a large Iranian-Jewish community; a large Russian-Jewish community; West Hollywood has become a center for the gay community. When I was first elected, Fairfax was heavily populated by seniors, but now it is much more diverse. It really is a dynamic place, and it is an honor to represent the area.” Yaroslavsky, who has lived in the Fairfax District since 1956 and is a graduate of Fairfax High School, said it is one of the most diverse communities anywhere. Since 1994, Yaroslavsky has represented the 3rd Supervisorial District — which stretches from the Wilshire and Fairfax areas west to the Ventura County border and north to the upper portions of the San Fernando Valley.From 1975 to 1994, he represented the area as Los Angeles City Councilmember for the 5th District. He said some of his biggest accomplishments have included authoring legislation to protect open space in the Santa Monica Mountains and the Hollywood Hills, spearheading the renovation of the Hollywood Bowl, and providing support for institutions such as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Walt Disney Concert Hall places he frequents regularly in his personal time. Yaroslavsky said he also loves the mountains and the areas around the ocean within his district, but added that he has remained in his home in the Fairfax District because everything can be found in one place. “It is strategically located. You are twenty minutes away from downtown or the Westside, the people are wonderful, and it is a relatively modest neighborhood with diverse land-use,” Yaroslavsky said. “You have Park La Brea and the Farmers Market, which has been one of my haunts since I have lived in the neighborhood. Pink’s Hot Dog stand is a favorite of mine. Some of the most beautiful apartments in town are in the Fairfax area. Overall, it’s just a great place to live.” Yaroslavsky said he definitely has seen the area change for the better over the years, and credited developments such as the Beverly Center and The Grove for driving that change. The area is now considered one of the most desirable places to live in the city, he added, and Yaroslavsky said he is proud to have been part of the process of change. “I think the change has been obvious. The development of the Beverly Center brought a huge change when it was built in the late ‘70s after Proposition 13,” Yaroslavsky said. “This neighborhood was at a crossroads. Nobody knew if there was going to be gentrification or whether it was going to get run down. The Beverly Center was a huge infusion of investment in the neighborhood and brought a huge injection of confidence in the area. It propelled the Fairfax area to what it is today, a very desirable place. The Grove is in the same vein. It’s a huge project that attracts people from all over the area.”
“We came back to L.A., and I found myself smack dab in the middle of the neighborhood again, which was very poignant for me. The Farmers Market, Canter’s, Diamond Bakery were all familiar stomping grounds.” Mike Feuer State Assemblymember Yaroslavsky added that new growth in the area can be expected within the coming years once the economy improves. He also said he wouldn’t think about living anywhere else.
“If you like the city, this is as nice a place as possible,” Yaroslavsky said. “We like the hustle and bustle, and I think the area has got all the up sides. As the population in Southern California increases, I think the Beverly-Fairfax area is going to become even more desirable.” Feuer, who grew up in San Bernardino but has lived in the local area since the mid-1980s, said he has been coming to the neighborhood since he was a child because his grandparents used to live near 5th Street and Crescent Heights. He said many of the local landmarks that he remembers as a kid are still here, and the neighborhood is more desirable than ever. “We came back to L.A., and I found myself smack dab in the middle of the neighborhood again, which was very poignant for me,” Feuer said. “The Farmers Market, Canter’s, Diamond
23 April 28, 2011 Bakery were all familiar stomping grounds.” Feuer moved to the area after graduating from Harvard Law School and became director of Bet Tzedek, a non-profit organization located on Fairfax Avenue that assists senior citizens with legal issues. He said helping people who otherwise could not help themselves inspired him to seek public office. Since 2006, he has represented the 42nd State Assembly District, which includes the Melrose and Fairfax Districts, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica, as well as portions of Hollywood and the San Fernando Valley. Prior to being elected to the State Assembly, he represented the area as Los Angeles City Councilmember for the 5th District from 1995 through 2001. Feuer said some of his proudest accomSee page 63
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From an Idaho Farm to LGBT Leader
lorri l. Jean’s Westward Journey
Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center’s Lorri L. Jean discusses finding love and providing aid amidst continuning changes By Rafael GueRReRo
orri L. Jean, CEO of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center (LAGLC), is one of the 50 most powerful gay and lesbian people in the nation as named by OUT Magazine in 2007. But her story starts with humble beginnings as a farmer’s daughter and she had many tumultuous and interesting experiences, both personal and professional, on her way to the the top job at the LAGLC. Jean was born in Boise, Idaho where her father worked the farm. He would spend winters in Arizona and eventually moved the family there when Jean was five years old. She learned to do many things that other girls her age would never dream of, including learning to drive a tractor and how to care for farm animals. “When you grow up on a farm you have to do a lot of work to keep the family going,” Jean said. “The family really relies on you at a very early age. I was driving a tractor by the time I was in fifth grade.” Jean helped her father do various chores on the farm like raising livestock and irrigating the fields. “I would be driving down one end of the field and my dad would be at the other end,” Jean recalled. “If the water made it to the end of the corrugate, I would wave a handkerchief so he would see it and pull out the irrigation tube.” By the time Jean hit her early teens, she wanted to be veterinarian, one of her many early ambitions. But her father disapproved. “Suddenly, my dad wanted me to be a more traditional girl,” Jean said. “It was too late by then.” Her father’s objections to her dreams of becoming a veterinarian eventually became a moot point as she shifted gears and had aspirations to go into politics while at Arizona State University (ASU). It was at ASU where she had a revelation that promised to change her future. “I was a late bloomer,” Jean said. “I did not realize [I was gay] until my last semester in college.” Jean had boyfriends throughout her adolescence, but she said it “never really felt right.” “I fell in love with all my girlfriends and female teachers but it wasn’t until my senior year that I came to the realization and understood why it was I had never felt right with my boyfriends.” Jean returned home for Christmas before her senior year was over, and came out to her mother, who asked that Jean refrain
photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center
The Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center consists of four buildings, one of which is the McDonald building (pictured).
from telling her father and not to reveal her sexuality on television. Jean had led a movement at ASU to have birth control made available to students at the health center. “It was big news in Arizona at that time,” Jean said. Jean agreed to her mother’s terms and then her mother began to cry. “She didn’t think anything was wrong
until Reverend Timothy Healy, president of the university, vetoed the group. “Oh come on, we’ll sue,” Jean recalled her reaction. They did sue but lost at the trial level. They appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court and the case was finally settled nine years later. “I was a practicing attorney by then,” Jean said. “But it was an interesting time
“I fell in love with all my girlfriends and female teachers but it wasn’t until my senior year that I came to the realization and understood why it was I had never felt right with my boyfriends.” Lorri L. Jean, CEO of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center
with me,” Jean said. “She was sad for me because she felt society would be tough on me. She knew I wanted to go into politics and thought it would be harder for me, and I thought that, too.” Jean decided to become an attorney and attended law school at Georgetown University. During her freshman year, she was approached by another gay student who asked her if she would help him form a gay and lesbian law students group. Although Jean was more involved with women’s rights groups at the time, she agreed to help. “We thought it would be easy since Washington D.C. had the Human Rights Act,” Jean said. The two got all the necessary approvals
because Father Healy threatened to blackball me. We sat at a table one day alone and, waving his finger at me said, ‘If you persist with this lawsuit you will never get a job in D.C. I will see to it.’ But as far as I could tell, he never did.” After graduating from Georgetown in 1983, Jean accepted a position at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). “It was a brand new federal agency back then and I figured I would be able to get a lot more experience, a lot more quickly,” Jean said. During her time at FEMA, Jean gained top secret security clearance, making her the first openly LGBT individual to receive that clearance according to the LAGLC.
Jean was sent to remote locations with other government organizations to perform various exercises. “We would be practicing this terrible scenario of 3,000 nukes having hit the U.S.,” Jean recalled. “My role was to advise people of the legalities of the things they wanted to do and whether it violated the constitution. It was all very interesting stuff.” Jean was appointed as FEMA’s deputy regional director in 1989, making her the highest-ranking openly gay or lesbian person in the federal government at the time, according to the LAGLC. While Jean’s career was skyrocketing, her relationship with her father remained stagnant. Jean came out to her father a couple of years after she told her mother. “He immediately went into denial,” Jean said. “I’d bring over my girlfriends and everybody else knew they were my partners but my dad just wouldn’t address it.” Jean and her family allowed him to live in denial, but when Jean took the CEO position at the LAGLC in 1992, she knew it was time for him to come to terms. She went back and told her father that he could not live in denial anymore and would have to accept that his daughter was a lesbian, but he just hoped it would go away. “He felt this job was a mistake,” Jean said. Ultimately though, Jean’s father came around. He visited her at the center after a year and met all her friends and colleagues. Soon he was visiting all the time, attending social events and fundraisers at the center. “Before he died, he had decided that gay people were superior to straight people,” Jean said. “All my friends were successful and had good educations which were very important to him. I had to explain to him that we had our share of bums just like every other community. But he eventually became my staunchest advocate.” When Jean began working at the LAGLC in 1992, it was an $8 million organization and in bad financial shape. “Part of my contract negotiations when I was first hired was how long I would have to repay the center’s deficits,” Jean said. “It was hard at first because finances were tough and we were only raising $1 million privately back then.” Jean recruited a few trusted colleagues and they got to work. Perhaps the biggest project at that time was the construction of the center’s state-of-the-art medical facility to help care for people dealing with HIV and AIDS. “It was the height of the AIDS epidemic,” Jean said. “People were dying left and right and we began to expand.” Soon the center required a new facility and Jean ran a capital campaign to build the Village at Ed Gould Plaza. The center raised $7 million for the building and $15 million for endowment.
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After the campaign was over, Jean learned her father was sick and decided to leave her position at the LAGLC. “I had been working 80 hours a week for six years and dad was sick so I quit and spent a year with my folks,” Jean said. She and her partner, Ginna Calvelli, took Jean’s parents on a trip around the world. Jean said her father really enjoyed the trip. Doctors gave Jean’s father a little more than a year to live after he was diagnosed, but he fought the cancer for eight more years before he passed away in 2007. As for Jean, she went back to work in 2001, serving as the executive director at the Gay and Lesbian Task Force (GLTF). The organization was in deep financial trouble when Jean arrived, but she worked her magic again and increased annual revenues to an all-time high of $5 million. Jean stayed with the GLTF until her contract expired in 2003. That’s when the LAGLC came calling again. Representatives from the LAGLC had approached Jean during her time at the GLTF and asked her to return photo by Rafael Guerrero as CEO, but Jean would not break Lorri L. Jean, CEO of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center, says of her position, “It’s the most her contract. The LAGLC searched rewarding job in the world.” for other candidates but decided to wait for Jean’s contract to expire. Jean was happy to take the job. “I realized that the work of the center had become so meaningful to me The LAGLC’s medical center will also undergo a remodel this year to add four new and nothing that I experienced afterwards, even the really wonderful work, could com- exam rooms and should be done by the end of the year. But the medical center is also near pare,” Jean said. “It’s the most rewarding job in the world.” capacity and the LAGLC applied in December to become a federally qualified health cenThere is still plenty of work to be done at the LAGLC. The center’s youth programs ter, which would provide federal money and allow the center to hire more medical staff. are nearing or at capacity. The Emergency Shelter program, which provides 10 beds to The ruling on the center’s application is expected to come this summer. homeless LGBT youth, is at capacity. The LAGLC’s Transitional Living program is also Jean’s contract is set to expire next summer, but the board of directors has already at capacity with a long waiting list. approached her to renew the contract. “I expect that’s what we’ll do,” Jean said. “I’m not “We are having to turn youth away,” Jean said. leaving anytime soon.”
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useum Row LACMA by edwin foLven And rAfAeL guerrero
he Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has seen its share of blockbuster exhibitions, from “Van Gogh’s Van Goghs” in 1999, to “Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs” in 2005 and “Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico” in 2010. Visitors also flock to the world-renowned museum to view the thousands of works of art in the permanent collection, which range from masterpieces by famous European artists such as Cézanne, Monet and Rembrandt, to works by the classic American painters Winslow Homer, John Singleton Copley and John Singer Sargent. LACMA’s collection is not limited to any genre, and includes works that span centuries and cultures. The museum has a large collection of ancient Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Etruscan art, as well as works from the ancient Americas, Near East and Asia. It also has one of the largest collections in the world of oceanic art from Polynesia, Melanesia, Micronesia and New Zealand, as well as vast holdings from Africa, China, Japan, Korea, Germany and the Middle East. Upcoming major special exhibitions include a retrospective of works
by filmmaker Tim Burton, opening on May 29, and “Gifts of the Sultan: The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts”, opening in June. “We want to make sure we throw out a wide net to attract everyone to the museum,” said Barbara Pflaumer, LACMA’s associate vice president of communications and marketing. The LACMA experience is not confined to the galleries. Visitors begin viewing the art before they get through the front door with installations like Chris Burden’s “Urban Light”, a collection of streetlights grouped together on the museum’s BP Grand Entrance near Wilshire Boulevard. Much of the art is interspersed through many different galleries on the LACMA campus, including modern works by artists such as John Baldessari, David Hockney and Bruce Nauman inside the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM), rotating exhibitions such as “David Smith: Cubes and Anarchy” in the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Pavilion, and temporary displays that include “The Way of the Elders: The Buddha in Modern Theravada Traditions” in the Ahmanson Building. Thousands of additional permanent works can be found in the Hammer Building, the Pavilion for Japanese Art, and the Art of the Americas Building. Just as expansive as the museum’s vast collection is the museum itself, which has expanded significantly over the years.
LACMA originated in 1913 as part of the Museum of Science, History and Art, and in 1961, the museum was established as an independent institution exclusively devoted to the visual arts. LACMA moved to Museum Row on the Miracle Mile in 1965. In 1983, it underwent the first major expansion, which increased gallery space by one-third. In 1986, the Robert O. Anderson Building for Modern and Contemporary Art was added, and the Pavilion for Japanese Art was completed two years later. In 1994, the seeds were planted for LACMA’s current “Transformation” when the former May Company building at Wilshire Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue was purchased. Over the next several years, LACMA steadily moved forward on its expansion and renovations. “It took us a long time to figure out a plan on how to incorporate the space,” Pflaumer said. BCAM, which opened in
photo courtesy of LACMA’
Elizbeth Taylor wearing a chador at the Shah Cheragh Shrine, in 1976, is part of the “Elizabeth Taylor in Iran:Photographs by Firooz Zahedi” on display through June 12.
“We want to make sure we throw out a wide net to attract everyone to the museum,” Barbara Pflaumer, LACMA associate vice president of communications and marketing
photo by Rafael Guerrero
The iconic Ahmanson building on LACMA’s campus is the centerpiece of the museum, which now encompasses nine buildings.
February 2008, and the Resnick Pavilion, which debuted last fall, are part of the multiphase “Transformation”, which began with a $60 million gift from Eli and Edythe Broad, founders of the Broad Foundation. The broad’s contribution covered the $50 million cost of BCAM and provided $10 million for art acquisitions. Renowned architect Renzo Piano created the master plan and designed both BCAM and the Resnick Pavilion. The transformation also includes the Dona S. and Dwight M. Kendall Concourse, which enables visitors to easily navigate the galleries across LACMA’s campus.
The extra space has allowed LACMA to display an array of artworks that appeal to a variety of demographics, something that is very important considering the diverse audience visiting the museum. Pflaumer added that the Korean and Latin American galleries have been reinstalled in new spaces, and have become big hits with visitors. LACMA also offers attractions that reach out to the local community, such as the NextGen Program, geared towards children and adolescents under 17, primarily students in public schools. NexGen offers students free membership and allows them to bring a guest for free. LACMA also has two 18wheelers — the Mayan Mobile and the Ancient World Mobile — that visit local schools. “They are fully enclosed classrooms,” Pflaumer said. “It’s like bringing the museum to you.” The museum also offers all residents of Los Angeles County free admission every night after 5 p.m., as well as free entry on the second Tuesday of every month. Adele Family Sundays, a promotion aimed at children and their parents, draws more than 300 participants every weekend. “We have positioned ourselves over the last twenty-two years as an active particiSee LACMA page 60
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George C. Page Musuem by jose martinez
ong before the formation of the good,” Page told the Los Angeles Times in Miracle Mile, the surrounding neigh- 1981, “was that they said, ‘George , we have borhood was one of the most danger- never been in a museum with things disous areas imaginable. Stalked by predators played so well.’” and savage beasts, what is now known as the The Page Museum is located in the area La Brea Tar Pits was home to fierce saber- originally known as Rancho La Brea (“the toothed cats, dire wolves and mastodons. tar ranch” in Spanish) in the heart of the Perhaps most deadly of all were the ooz- Miracle Mile. The La Brea Tar Pits is one of ing pools of asphalt that seeped out of the the world’s most famous fossil sites, recogground trapping all the animals that were nized for having the largest and most diverse unfortunate enough to step into the sticky assemblage of extinct Ice Age plants and substance. Once the animals were trapped, animals in the world. Visitors can learn they would either die of hunger and thirst, or about Los Angeles as it was between 10,000 be torn apart by the saber-toothed cats or and 40,000 years ago. Since 1913, more dire wolves coming to feed on them. But than one million bones have been recovered, then, they too would often get stuck. And representing over 231 species of vertebrates. down would come the birds of prey and they Recently, during the 2006 construction of would get stuck as well, proving that there is the Los Angeles County Museum of Art no such thing as a free lunch. (LACMA) parking structure next door to the Scientifically speaking, the La Brea Tar Page Museum, 16 asphaltic deposits were Pits, according to Aisling Farrell, collections recovered from the construction site. In manager at the George C. Page Museum, 2008, 23 enormous intact blocks were lifted should really be named the “asphalt seeps.” out of the earth and crated with wooden Asphalt is a naturally occurring crude oil, planks into “tree” boxes. The name, Project which is what is found at the pits, while tar 23: New Discoveries at Rancho La Brea, is is actually a man-made product. a reference to the 23 extracted crates. Museum founder, George C. Page, was So that scientists may focus fully on born in Fremont, Nebraska in 1901. At age Project 23, the Page Museum temporarily 16 he made his way to halted excavations at Pit California with his 91, one of the world’s thumb, and $2.30 in his most plentiful urban “Usually, digs are so pocket. Page went on to excavation sites. far away from civilization, make his fortune with Fossils found in his Mission Pak holiProject 23 include juvethat it really is amazing day fruit gift boxes, and nile mastodon, saberto have something like this toothed cats, multiple land development. He later became a major dire wolf elements, sloth in the heart benefactor of ribs, bison sacrums, of the city.” Children’s Hospital Los juvenile coyote sacrums, John Harris small to giant birds, turAngeles, Pepperdine Chief Curator tles, horses and camels. University and other Page Museum A tree branch dated at institutions that aid young people. 29,000 years old was Page founded the also unearthed. George C. Page Museum at the La Brea Tar According to chief curator of the Page Pits as a place to showcase local archeolog- Museum for the last 30 years, Dr. John ical findings. Harris, the Project 23 discovery was the Upon the museum’s opening, which saw ultimate find. five million visitors in its first decade, many “I was absolutely thrilled because of the professional curators came to see what Page potential it has to tell us of the environment had created. of the past,” Harris said. “When they exca“The thing that made me feel awfully vated the tar pits in the early part of the
twentieth century, they didn’t collect all the fossils, they just collected the bigger bones. They ignored the tiny fossils and we now know, of course, it’s the tiny fossils that tell you about the environment. So that’s why the museum started Pit 91 in 1969 to collect all the fossils. In Pit 91, we added over three hundred species of animals and plants, and most of what we know about insects and plants and snail shells came from Pit 91. It gave us a very detailed insight into what life was like in Los Angeles 27,000 years ago.”
27 April 28, 2011 The Counter, or Callender’s. “Usually, digs are so far away from civilization, that it really is amazing to have something like this in the heart of the city,” Harris said. “I think the Page Museum’s research is very relevant to life today,” Harris said. “Because what happened with the fossils from the tar pits, and particularly from Project 23, we have the potential to document what happened locally when the world went through a global cooling phase to the height of the last Ice Age 20,000 years ago, and when it went through global warming afterwards. Today, we’re faced with global warming, and you can’t predict what is going to happen, but if you look back at the fossil records that are provided by the La Brea Tar Pits, [they have] the potential to tell you what happened locally when you did have global warming.” While Harris’ focus will soon shift to the Natural History Museum, which will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2013, the Page Museum will plow right along with its current groundbreaking projects, offering museum visitors a chance to see firsthand just how exciting and dangerous life in the Miracle Mile was 20,000 years ago.
photos by Jose Martinez
Archaeologists work on Project 23, which was unearthed during construction on a new parking structure for LACMA.
With so much to learn apparently buried just underneath the Miracle Mile property, it’s hard for staff to resist the temptation to dig up all around them. “Well, you never know what you’re going to find,” Harris said. “The last time they redid Hancock Park, about ten years ago, we found a dozen new fossil deposits that we didn’t know were there. We thought when we finish Pit 91 we can start on one of those fossil deposits, but then along came the LACMA underground parking structure and we would never have known those fossils were there because they were between ten and twenty five feet below the surface. It was very fortunate for us.” The museum hopes to finish Project 23 over the next five years and then get back to Pit 91. Because of the findings and research done at the Page Museum, fossils from the La Brea Tar Pits are used as the standard of comparison for what life was like in North America during the last Ice Age. For Harris, who has worked on digs as far away as Kenya, there is nothing like getting his hands dirty at the Miracle Mile site and then crossing the street for a bite to eat at
“Visitors can see the fantastic diversity of life living in Los Angeles until about 11,000 years ago,” Harris said. “I would hope they would then wonder why it changed, why did these big animals become extinct? It seems clear that humans were involved in the extinction of these big animals. We’re going through another extinction phase now. We’re losing a lot of animals and plants because of the growth of human populations. We’ve already seen 11,000 years ago the diversity of life in North America diminish very rapidly because of the arrival of humans, and today we have to take a lot of care to make sure the species we still have left in North America don’t also become extinct.” Harris reflects on the advantages of working and living in the heart of the city. “It’s not many places where you can spend all day in the field and then go home, clean up and have a beer,” Harris said. “It’s so convenient, there isn’t any place as good as this. By the same token, people from the neighborhood can come in and see us do our work. That is not possible anywhere else.”
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LA’s Love Affair with Cars showcased at
Petersen Automotive Museum by edwin folven
os Angeles is known as the “Automotive Capital of the World” because of its extensive network of freeways and roads, millions of drivers and Angelenos’ love affair with their cars. Robert Petersen, a publishing magnate with magazines such as “Hot Rod” and “Motor Trend”, shared in that love affair, owning 125 vehicles, including a one-of-akind 1925 Rolls Royce Phantom I, a 1939 Bugati, and a 1937 Delahaye Teardrop Roadster. To pay homage to the automobile and to preserve its legacy, Petersen established the Petersen Automotive Museum. “L.A. is not like any other Twentieth Century city, we grew out instead of up. Everybody had cars…and wanted to proclaim their individuality with their cars,” said Leslie Kendall, curator for the Petersen Automotive Museum. “We document that culture, we preserve the tangible artifacts spawned by that culture, and that includes cars. We preserve that history and interpret it in a local context. We are very lucky in L.A., because L.A. is at the center of where a lot of the history happened.” The Petersen Automotive Museum opened in 1994 and has since grown to feature approximately 150 vehicles at any one time. Petersen, who was a board member of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, envisioned the museum as a place where he could display his vast collection of vehicles, including the 1925 Rolls Royce and other unique vehicles such as a 1956 Jaguar XKSS once owned by actor Steve McQueen, and a 1952 Ferrari Barchetta. Petersen and his wife Margie provided $5 million initially to get the project off the ground as a satellite of the Natural History Museum, and in 2000 gave $24.8 million to pay off the initial loans and transfer ownership to the Petersen Museum Foundation. Petersen helped create a car culture in Los Angeles through his magazine empire. The legacy of the publishing magnate, who passed away in 2007, is exemplified throughout the museum, which features vehicles from his personal collection, as well as many that have been acquired, donated or loaned to the institution over the years. “He wanted to give the community some
thing to celebrate car culture,” Kendall said. “Our mission is to present and explore the automobile and its impact on life and culture, with Los Angeles as the focus.” Kendall said the idea was not just to have people look at the vehicles, but to feel and experience the automobile. In some cases, visitors can get behind the wheel, or feel what it was like to be a spectator at an early Indianapolis 500, even inhale that new car smell. Guests can view classic cars that were owned by celebrities such as McQueen, Elvis Presley, Clark Gable and Jane Mansfield. Vehicles featured in films, including “Batman” and the “The Green Hornet”, Maseratis, Lamborghinis, Ferraris and Porsches are currently on display, as well as an exhibit paying tribute to the history of drag racing. Alternative vehicles, from the earliest steam-powered cars to modern electric and solar-powered vehicles round out the exhibit. Kendall said the museum welcomes between 150,000 and 180,000 visitors each year, and it is a major destination for school field trips. The displays are created to show
cars in the context of history, with photographs, furniture and automotive artifacts placed next to the cars to establish a scene. “There is more to cars than just the physical attributes, they touch our lives. Cars are engineering, cars are sociology, cars are entertainment,” Kendall added. “They are really everything, and can be used to explain so much about our lives.” Timeline dioramas on the museum’s first floor illustrate a vehicle stuck in the mud in Malibu in the early part of the 20th Century
“Cars are engineering, cars are sociology, cars are entertainment. They are really everything, and can be used to explain so much about our lives.” Leslie Kendall, curator for the Petersen Automotive Museum when there were few paved roads. A replica of a dealership showroom from the 1920s; a garage that exemplifies the typical suburban residence in the 1960s; and a workshop that
contrasts how cars were designed in the 1940s with clay, through the present where designers use computers and plastics, are part of the history of cars. Visitors who remember playing with toy cars as children will enjoy the “Hot Wheels Hall of Fame” permanent exhibit, which includes life-sized versions of classic Hot Wheels Cars, in addition to more than 1,000 toy vehicles that represent the brand’s 40year history. Kids can climb into a racecar or a Model-T, sit on a police motorcycle, or become a human spark plug in a giant combustible engine in the 6,500-square-foot May Family Discovery Center located on the third floor. Buddy Pepp, the museum’s executive director who was appointed last June, said he shares in Petersen’s vision of providing a place to showcase the history of the automobile. “We have a city block and 300,000 square feet of space, so we are already a very substantial facility,” Pepp said. “I think we are going to improve the look of the facility and make it a lot nicer. I am excited about the future. In the last seventeen years we have grown into one of the most highly regarded automotive museums in the country.”
useum Row is the hub of art, history and cultural institutions in Los Angeles, and one of the world-class venues is the Craft and Folk Art Museum (CAFAM), which has been open since 1973. CAFAM was the brainchild of Edith R. Wyle, who opened the Egg and the Eye restaurant by edwin folven in 1965, which featured a variety of egg dishes and a gallery where local folk artists displayed their works. The restaurant closed in 1973, when Wyle converted the space at 5814 Wilshire Blvd. into CAFAM, which allowed her to indulge in her love for art, according to Susan Isken, the museum’s director. “She was one of the key advocates for folk art in the Southern California area, and she helped put California Folk Art on the map,” Isken said. “Although she was a painter, she is not known as an artist, but as the woman who set the stage for design and folk arts and crafts in Southern California.” Wyle, who passed away in 1999, was known as the “High Priestess of Folk Art” and was famous for founding the International Festival of Masks. She built the museum into a venue that today attracts some of the top artists from the local area, as well as many international artists. The museum has carried on her tradition, organizing exhibits on the legendary designer Eva Zeisel, sculptor Dora De Larios, and a collection titled “Celestial Ash” featuring works by numerous Los Angeles-based artists. Currently, the museum features an exhibit on designers Evelyn and Jerome Ackerman, and an installation utilizing hanging strings by artist Tanya Aguiñ iga. Isken said CAFAM plans to remain focused on Wyle’s vision, and will present an exhibition in September titled “The Golden State of Craft: 19601985” which will include highlights of exhibits displayed over the years. “There is no other place in Los Angeles that emphasizes the importance of folk art and craft,” Isken added. “We are located in an amazing community here on Museum Row, and we want to continue to give people a place where they can connect with the best in craft and folk art.”
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he spirit of Arthur Fremont “A.F.” Gilmore, the visionary who founded the A.F. Gilmore Company, and his son, Earl Bell “E.B.” Gilmore, who founded the Original Farmers Market at the corner of 3rd and Fairfax, is alive and well in the Gilmore family of today. The A.F. Gilmore Company, which operates the Farmers Market, remains a family-run business, and Hank Hilty, the current president of the company, is the great grandson of A.F. Gilmore, who purchased the land in the 1880s. Stan Savage Jr., The story of how 3rd and who started with the Fairfax’s iconic outdoor company in 2002 and is now Market Manager, market and restaurants began is the great, great grandmore than 75 years ago son of A.F. Gilmore. Hilty said that sense of family cohesion has made the Market, and the Gilmore Company’s many other endeavors, so successful over the years. “I am really proud of the family. There are not many multi-generational family businesses that have been successful in keeping the family involved in the business,” Hilty said.
65th Anniversary [Gilmore] Adobe. They were really fond memories for me.” Savage said the Market is still like home to him. He moved to Los Angeles in 1998 and was married at the Adobe in 2005. Savage, who has two children, also said he regularly gathers with his family and friends at the Market. “We still meet here on Friday nights with family and friends to have a few beers or dinner,” Savage said. “It’s a great place where we bring our kids now like our parents bought us.” The history of the Farmers Market, and the A.F. Gilmore Company, is as unique as the individual stories of the people who visit. The Market has been a fixture in the neighborhood since 1934, when a group of farmers began selling fresh produce on vacant land at the corner of 3rd Street and Fairfax Avenue that was owned by the Gilmore Company. Over the past 76 years, the Farmers Market has grown into the vibrant family of merchants that it is today. “Meet Me at 3rd and Fairfax” has become an iconic slogan known to countless customers who travel to the Market from all over the United States, and around the world.
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press products under the Gilmore Oil brand. The company’s success was driven by Gilmore’s flair for marketing. “It was the Burma Shave of the petroleum industry,” Hilty said. “They had a huge network of gas stations up and down the West Coast. If anything got smeared with oil or used oil products, they sponsored it, from airplanes to hydrofoils, Indy races and endurance racing.” During the early 1930s, Gilmore became heavily invested in auto racing, and built the Gilmore Stadium in 1934, where CBS television City is currently located. A natural progression of his flair for marketing, the stadium was initially used for racing midget cars, and promoting the oil company. Many drivers used the midget car series as a springboard to the Indy car circuit. In addition to racing, the stadium was used for many other functions, including as the home of Los Angeles’ first professional football team — the Bulldogs — as well as circuses, boxing, rodeos and political speeches. Harry S. Truman made his famous “Stiff Upper Lip” speech at the stadium in 1948. It was also in 1934 that the Farmers Market
By Edwin FolvEn
FarmErs markEt’s nativE sons “The employees we have and the businesses are another thing I am very proud of. Our merchants are the backbone of the Market, and we have had some very creative and innovative long time merchants, which are like a family. Since A.F. Gilmore in the 1880s, it has always been a family business.” Savage, who grew up in Seattle, said he fondly remembers visiting the market as a child when he would visit with his family during summers. “I remember coming down as a kid. It was an entirely different layout then. The Dell section was there with many shops and there was the bookstore. I remember it had a lot of comics, and I was really into comics. I was probably six or seven years old,” Savage said. “I also remember smelling the food, and remember having the Mexican food, which wasn’t as common in Seattle. We would stay at the
While the Farmers Market is the main component of the Gilmore Company, the Gilmore family has embarked on many ventures on the property over the years. A.F. Gilmore primarily used the parcel as a dairy farm until around the turn of the 20th Century, when he struck oil while drilling a water well. A short time later, the cows were gone, and oilrigs dotted the landscape. The Gilmore Company initially produced petroleum products used for making asphalt roads. E.B. Gilmore, became head of the company after his father’s death in 1918. During the decades prior to World War II, the Gilmore Company transformed into the largest oil company west of the Mississippi River. E.B. Gilmore was a master of marketing, and developed an extensive network of gasoline filling stations and petroleum
began in the area near 3rd and Fairfax that was used for overflow parking from the stadium. Two businessmen, Roger Dahljelm and Fred Beck, came to Gilmore with the idea of creating a place where local farmers sold their fresh produce. Gilmore gave permission for Dahljelm and Beck to cultivate their idea, and the rest is history. Dahljelm was a stickler for quality, and made sure all of the merchants were offering the best fruits and vegetables available, while Beck, like Gilmore, was an expert in promotion. Within a few years, the trucks made way for permanent structures, and the Market began taking the familiar shape it retains today. Gilmore had always envisioned the property as an entertainment attraction, and during the 1950s, he also created Gilmore Field, which became home to the Hollywood Stars baseball team. Other ven-
photos by Edwin Folven
Hank Hilty, left, is the great grandson of A.F. Gilmore, who created the Original Farmers Market at 3rd and Fairfax. Stan Savage Jr., right, has been with the market since 2002 and is currently market manager.
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press tures includes a drive-in movie theatre, which operated from the late ‘40s through the ‘70s. The Gilmore Bank was built in 1955 and was housed in a memorable brick building. The bank has been rebuilt in a different location with similar architecture. The Original Farmers Market, however, continues to be the centerpiece of the Gilmore legacy.
“The company believes in supporting its community, and we make a major effort in getting involved in a number of community groups.” -Hank Hilty great grandson of A.F. Gilmore. Hilty said the construction of The Grove in the early 2000s was a continuation of that legacy and the Gilmore family’s desire to offer a quality attraction. The Grove was built by developer Rick Caruso, of Caruso Affiliated, in partnership with the Gilmore Company. Hilty added that the company’s future plans include the development of a retail center across the street from the Market on the northwest corner of 3rd and Fairfax. Hilty added that he still has proud ties to the glory days of the Gilmore Oil Company, which come in the form of a midget racing car, a sprint car and some other vintage vehicles that he owns. Visitors to the Farmers Market can view a
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replica of a Gilmore filling station, located next to the Farmers Market, and each year the company pays tribute to the past with the Gilmore Auto Show. Hilty added that the Gilmore family has always been involved in helping others, and has close ties to the Salvation Army going back to E.B. Gilmore. Each year, the Market hosts the “Kettle Kick-Off” in November, which launches the Salvation Army’s holiday fundraising season. “The company believes in supporting its community, and we make a major effort in getting involved in a number of community groups,” Hilty said. “We have always been actively involved, whether it’s the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce or the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce, or the Greenway Theatre or Fairfax High School, it’s part of our community.” Savage said he plans to continue the heritage A.F. and E.B. Gilmore began, and added that he is always looking for ways to improve the Market. Two additional members of the company’s administrative staff, Michael Hilty and Matthew Stayton, are also descendants of Gilmore. Savage, said he hopes the next generation of Gilmores will take the same amount of pride in the family business that the current generation does. “It’s very rare to see a fifth generationrun company. It’s an anomaly, and I hope it continues,” Savage said. “We are a very healthy company, and we want to maintain that and grow it. I hope it continues to be a photo courtesy of Farmers Market meaningful experience for the people who The Farmers Market continues to attract Angelenos and tourists, just as it did in the 1960s. come and visit the property.”
8908 Santa Monica Blvd. at San Vicente • (310)652-7407
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the road to E FROM TH AGE TO GOLEDN ERN THE MOD HE ERA OF T ALACE MOVIE P
by Tim Posada
hen it comes to action films, Los Angeles is the number-one setting for chases and shoot outs. And L.A. has its share of instantly recognizeable landmarks that regularly appear on the silver screen. So what are the familiar landmarks of the area, besides the Hollywood sign? In fact, Los Angeles is peppered with quite a few, with more than 145 Los Angeles HistoricCultural Monuments in Hollywood alone. Among those protected pieces of architecture are multiple historic theatres that make up one of the most important collections of buildings in the city –– a collection that serves as the central metaphor for understanding Los Angeles’ cinematic role that need not be defined by skyscrapers, but the central role of the reel. After all, show business and the city are involved in a very committed union that could never be divorced — a union that begins on Broadway, before the movie theatre boom. “The culture and history of Broadway is very important to L.A. history,” said Marc Wanamaker, co-author of “Theatres in Los Angeles”. “Before cinema grew, we had many theaters from the nineteenth century until now. Thomas Tally opened the first nickelodeon theatre in 1902 on Broadway and then more on other streets. In other, words, downtown is the birth place of movie theaters.” Wanamaker has lists of more than 1,000 theatres in the Los Angeles area –– theatres like the Idle Hour Theatre, the theatre on Santa Monica’s pier or another five in the small area that would become West Hollywood. For him, the rise of theatres parallels the increased popularity of the afternoon matinee and the double feature. “With the coming of the studios to Los Angeles in the 1908 period, we have the theatre following almost at the same time,” Wanamaker said. “Every nook and cranny
photo courtesy of The Disney Company
El Capitan Theatre is known for stage shows and interactive events before film screenings, like “The Nightmare Before Christmas” in 4-D, adding physical effects.
had a movie theatre. Legitimate (or stage) theaters were here and there, but not as many as movie theaters in Los Angeles.” Over the last century, many theatres couldn’t survive the test of Los Angeles business and economy, leading to demolition or transition into rental space, like the Cameo Theatre on 528 S. Broadway, which is now home to several businesses; the lobby has been converted into shops and the auditorium serves as storage space. Still, some smaller venues survived. With a recession-proof resolve, New Beverly Cinema remains a nightlife, cinematic voice. AMC Theatres may rake in the blockbusters, and the Laemmle Theatres get the more prominent independent films, while New Beverly made a niche for itself as the home of foreign, indie and,
especially cult films, anything from blaxploitation to grindhouse. This caught the eye of filmmaker, Quentin Tarantino, who bought the venue last year, insuring its continued role as the Los Angeles voice of double features presented on 35-millimeter reel prints. Even bigger names, like Grauman’s Chinese, El Capitan and the Egyptian theatres, have had trouble staying afloat, though Jonathan Kuntz, professor of film history at the University of California Los Angeles, commends the Chinese Theatre for its longstanding role in the city and a refusal to close its doors during 84 years of operation. “Single screen theaters in general have struggled, but the Chinese has been able to handle that problem by becoming a tourist location and teaming with another com-
plex,” Kuntz said. When it comes to Los Angeles theatre history, entertainment godfather, Sid Grauman (1879-1950), is one of the major names in the business. Kuntz describes the construction of nickelodeons in the 1910s and the boom of deluxe theaters in the ’20s, highlighting the substantial role of the theatre mogul behind many of Los Angeles’ most well-known theatres, including the Egyptian Theatre, the Chinese Theatre and El Capitan, along with the Million Dollar Theater at 307 S. Broadway. “Sid Grauman was a showman in the old sense of the term, with live shows at his premieres,” Kuntz said. Levi Tinker, historian for the Chinese Theatre, further discusses how Grauman laid the groundwork for making Hollywood Boulevard what it is today through a strategic land development plan, along with a few tales about his appreciation of the fans. “Legend goes, Grauman went outside the Chinese Theatre and asked what he could do to better promote Hollywood,” Tinker said. “He then saw a group of people looking at the handprints. Next, he had his limo driver pick everyone up and showed them around the different celebrities’ homes. From here, we really start to see tourism grow.” Historic theatres have a long list of supporters and developers, but five theatres on Hollywood Boulevard set the stage for understanding the relationship between Los Angeles and the picture business.
Egyptian thEatEr Since 1922 / Seats 616 6712 Hollywood Blvd. Fun Fact: Location of the first Hollywood film premiere
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photos courtesy of Broadway L.A.
“Wicked” is one of the most successful shows to staged at the Pantages Theatre (inset image), and it will return in the fall for a brief run as well.
While many theatres found homes in “It’s not the only Egyptian Theater in the Superman and Catwoman to Chewie and various areas of Los Angeles, nothing as country, but it’s probably the most spectac- Shrek, roaming the boulevard out front. lavish is as this one. The introduction of ular,” Kuntz said. “Fortunately it was Besides Comic Con, it’s the only place the Egyptian Theater to Hollywood picked up by American Cinematheque and where beloved characters can move about Boulevard in 1922 paved the way for protected with the help of such people as without being scolded for donning inapmany other first-rate venues to accompa- Steven Spielberg.” propriate attire. Like the Egyptian and the ny the eventual tourist hotspot, after real Richard Adkins, president of Hollywood Mayan, beneath the recognizable banner estate developer, Charles E. Toberman, Heritage, adds that the Egyptian’s most lies a theatre that employs recognizable pitched a substantial development idea to recent renovation bodes well for the cultur- global iconography in order to boast the Sid Grauman that would turn the reputation of Hollywood. boulevard into an A-list locale. “It’s built in a style called ‘pro“If there was hype around anygrammatic’, meaning it’s meant thing, people would say, ‘Oh, it’s for one purpose, but looks like going to the Egyptian,’” said something else,” Adkins said. Margot Gerber, founder of the “The idea was that the moviegoEgyptian Theater tour program. ing experience is complete from “The Egyptian was the location the moment you leave your street of the first Hollywood film precar to when you sit down for the miere since New York used to be movie, from architectural style where it all happened.” and musical prologue before the “Robin Hood”, starring film. It was an entire experiDouglas Fairbanks, debuted first ence.” in 1922, and over the next five The theatre continues its prophoto courtesy of Bison Archives years, the silent films of grammatic motif for special preSid Grauman built the Chinese Theatre to be his main Fairbanks and Mary Pickford mieres, like recreating the dreamtheatre palace for premieres. would dominate the premiere list land Dorothy fell upon in “The as well. Wizard of Oz” or transforming it Accompanying each premiere, into the arctic for “The Polar Grauman was known for acquiring props al climate of the area. Express”. As Tinker puts, the premieres to accent the internal and external of the “The restoration reemphasizes have always been a grand event, ever since Egyptian. Gerber lists multiple examples, Hollywood Boulevard’s original role as a the first — Cecil B. DeMille’s “King of like a pirate ship placed in the courtyard pedestrian area with a ceremonial long Kings”, in 1927. for the premiere of “The Black Pirate”, entrance,” Adkins said. “It was a huge event with thousands of another Fairbanks film. Before “The Ten fans out there,” Tinker said. “Sid Grauman Commandments” in 1923, he even conbuilt the Chinese to be his main theatre ChinEsE thEatrE cocted a live biblical epic on stage. Years palace for premieres. Over the years, ‘King later, film star, Myrna Loy, would write a Kong’, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and others both Since 1927 / Seats 1152 note to Grauman next to her handprints at premiered or were featured there. It’s 6925 Hollywood Blvd. the Chinese Theatre thanking him for diswhere the biggest of the big went.” Fun Fact: Never had to close its covering her when she was a dancer at the And how exactly did the idea for the doors due to funding or restoration Egyptian. infamous hand and foot prints come about? Year laters, Fox West Coast Theatre pur“The general idea is that silent film star, chased the theatre, MGM funded a masWhere to begin with a theatre now Norma Talmadge, fell and her hands got sive renovation and, finally, United Artists famous for the cement hand and footprints stuck in wet concrete and Sid Grauman got became the owner until it closed in 1992. of more than 200 celebrities? Of all the the idea,” Tinker said. “One of the great American Cinematheque then purchased theatres in Los Angeles, the Chinese just things about it, beside immortalizing the theater from the City of Los Angeles might bring the most tourists, between the celebrities, is that people can place their for $1 and they embarked on a $15 million up-and-running theatre, celebrity imprints hand and footprints in the same place as renovation that finished in 1998. and a wide array of classic characters, from people like Clark Gable or Marilyn
Monroe.” Unlike other historic theatres, the Chinese continues to release scheduled theatrical films and premieres several each year, connecting the golden age of silent films and talkies with contemporary cinema. “For all 84 years, we’ve been a first-run commercial theater,” Tinker said. “It’s been open all 84 years, and, throughout those years, every big actor, actress, producer or director has been through those doors.”
El Capitan thEatrE Since 1926 / Seats 1,000 6838 Hollywood Blvd. Fun Fact: Features “The Nightmare Before Christmas” every year since the film premiered in 1993 One of Grauman’s big three, next to the Egyptian and the Chinese, is the El Capitan Theatre, which became a Los Angeles hotspot for more than 120 plays, and served as the location of the world premiere of Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane” in 1941. Unable to get the taste of popcorn out of its system, El Capitan closed its doors to stage shows, and became the Hollywood Paramount movie house. The Walt Disney Company entered the story in the third act of El Capitan’s history, implementing a two-year restoration project, coming to a climax in 1991 with the return of El Capitan, again as a movie house, and the world premiere of Disney’s “The Rocketeer”. Since then, it’s become the premiere location for Disney properties, like “Beauty and the Beast”, “Aladdin” and more recently “Toy Story 3”, as well as live dance performances to complement feature films and various other spectacles, like a laser show before “Tron: Legacy”. For Ed Collins, general manager of El Capitan, the relationship with owner Disney requires the theatre to remain up to date, creating a top-tier viewing experience. “It’s like our own little theme park here and we try to preserve the moviegoing experience of the golden era,” Collins said. “Part of seeing the movie here is seeing things that aren’t available elsewhere. Because we’re a part of the Disney studio, we’re able to get props and costumes from films and display them in the lobby, mak-
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Our Man Stan The Venerable KTLA Reporter Saw and Covered It All for 63 Years by jose martinez
s a television news reporter, Stan Chambers was no stranger to danger and tragedy. From fires, floods, riots and assassinations, he covered it all. For over 60 years, whenever local breaking news happened, KTLA viewers could always count on Chambers to be at the scene. A native of Los Angeles, Chambers was raised in the Wilshire / Western area of town. Growing up, Chambers and his chums would take over vacant lots near 8th and Western Avenues and create their own games. “We’d have our own private football, baseball and kickthe-can games,” Chambers said. “It was lots of fun.” Chambers first job was working for a neighbor who had a concession stand at nearby Westlake Park (now MacArthur Park). A teenaged Chambers worked the soda fountain and the popcorn machine, as well as the boats. “Sunday afternoon was a big day and lots of people came out,” Chambers said. “At the time, I couldn’t think of a better job in the world.” After serving in the Navy, Chambers attended USC, and began working at KTLA in December of 1947, shortly after it became the first commercially licensed television station in the western United States. He started as a stagehand, but was quickly promoted to operations, then sales and at the same time, began reporting and working on live variety programs. “In those days, everyone did a little of everything,” Chambers noted. Over his illustrious career, Chambers reported on approximately 22,000 stories, including every major natural disaster in Los Angeles since 1947, including the 1961 Bel Air fire; the 1963 Baldwin Hills dam break; and the 1994 Northridge earthquake. He also covered national news events, including the Robert Kennedy assassination; the Frank Sinatra, Jr. kidnapping; the Manson family murders; and the Hillside Strangler case. Chambers broke the 1991 Rodney King beating when amateur photographer George Holiday handed over his videotape to the trusted newsman. Chambers first big news story was the Kathy Fiscus tragedy that occurred in April 1949. While playing in a vacant lot near her San Marino home, three-year-old Kathy stumbled into an abandoned well. For over 27 hours, Chambers reported live from the scene with nonstop coverage. “It was the first time that a television station went to a scene and actually televised the entire event,” Chambers pointed out. “We didn’t leave for one second the whole time. People tuned in hoping and praying that they’d rescue this little girl. And then, when the word came out that she was dead, we continued the broadcast until they brought the body out. And the thing that was so unique is that here was a heart-wrenching visual, and everybody who had a set turned it on. Then, there were only a few thousand sets, but nothing like that had happened before. People invited their neighbors in so you had dozens of people watching these little television sets. It was a very powerful and emo-
tional loss for the whole city.” The story set a precedent in TV news reporting and helped build KTLA’s reputation for live news coverage. It also made Chambers an instantly recognizable personality. “Overnight, I was a television celebrity,” Chambers said. Dedicated to covering breaking news, Chambers photo by Jose Martinez confesses he never took a Stan Chambers came into our living rooms every night at ten, reporting on the news vacation. He and his late and events occurring in the City of Angels for 63 years. His “straight-arm” interviewwife Beverly raised their ing tactics enabled him to report just the facts without becoming emotionally involved, family in the Larchmont Chambers recalled. area to be close to the station. “It took me less than 10 minutes to get dressed and get to story he was covering, Chambers admits he never let his the station,” Chambers noted. “For years, I never took a emotions get the best of him, thanks in part to what he calls vacation. I would work during the day, then went home for his ‘straight arm’ approach to broadcasting. “I have what I call the ‘straight arm,’” Chambers said. dinner and then went back to the station to be on the nightshift with the breaking news stories. I was in seventh heav- “I’m here and all the agony is at the end of the arm. I’m reporting it, but I’m not involved in it. I can’t be hurt or en.” Chambers relished his time in the Larchmont area, enjoy- touched. I’m just telling what’s going on. I remember during the small town atmosphere. “We had the benefits of “For years, I never took a vacation. I would work during the day, then a small town,” Chambers said. “Schools and church went home for dinner and then went back to the station to be on the and parks were close. Our nightshift with the breaking news stories. I was in seventh heaven.” home and neighborhood Stan Chambers could have been in any small town USA. You didn’t get the feeling of being in a big city. We had ing the riots, being over one of the scenes where everybody Larchmont Village to do our shopping. I drove down from the street was going into the markets and drugstores and coming out with packages of things they were ‘borrowLarchmont recently, and it was still just like that.” A nearby favorite haunt of Chambers was the ing.’ We had half a dozen of these major events, at least, Nickodell Restaurant on Melrose Avenue, a classic over the years, and the helicopter brought the scene to the martini and steak joint that closed in 1993, which whole city. In some ways, it was good, and in some ways it stood next to the old KTLA station before it moved was bad, but people really saw what was happening. You actually saw someone running in with a torch and then runto its current location on Sunset Boulevard. “It was filled with your typical Hollywood ning out.” An award-winning journalist, some of Chambers’ honors working types,” Chambers recalled. “Lots of studio people. Day and night it seemed it was open. include several Emmy and Golden Mike awards; the Sigma You knew all the staff. It was home away from Delta Chi Broadcaster of the Year award; the Governor’s Award from the Television Academy; the Lifetime home.” As a newsman, Chambers reveled in the Achievement Award from the Society of Professional Journalists; a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; an L.A. excitement of chasing developing stories. “My introduction to television news Press Club Award; L.A. City and County proclamations; and was exhilaration and deadlines and pres- from his alma mater, the USC Alumni Association Award. Now retired at age 87, Chambers enjoys golfing with his sure,” Chambers recalled. “The thrill of getting the camera working and talk- wife Gege, even though she always gets the better of him. “She always wins,” Chambers said. “Usually, it’ll just be ing to the people involved, you’re exhausted, but you’re just elated to the two of us and that’s a lot of fun.” But the groundbreaking newsman confesses that he does be a part of something like that. I learned early on that there was miss being in the middle of all the action. “When a breaking story hits and I’m not included, it’s a no way I was going to do anyreal blow, Chambers admitted. “To this day I still want to get thing but work in television.” involved.” Yet, no matter what news
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A Miracle on Wilshire Blvd. Developer A.W. Ross’ Dream is Realized BY Edwin FolvEn
nly on the Miracle Mile can you tour world-class museums and view priceless art, explore a pre-historic tar-pit, take a walking tour of some of the city’s best examples of art deco architecture, enjoy dinner and catch a show at a landmark historic theater, all within a 17-block stretch. Wilshire Boulevard has reinvented itself many times since the late 1880s, from its beginnings as vacant pastures between downtown Los Angeles and Beverly Hills, to the creation of a premiere shopping destination in the 1920s through ‘60s, into one of the largest business and tourism centers in the city. After the turn of the 20th Century, Wilshire Boulevard became a vital link between the city’s core and the coastline. Developer A. W. Ross looked out at the sparsely populated residential neighborhoods and saw a bustling boulevard dotted with department stores and commercial buildings. Around 1920, Ross purchased parcels and planned his commercial center, but it remained to be seen whether it would ever take shape, according to Marcello Vavala, a preservation associate with the Los Angeles Conservancy, who has extensively studied the Miracle Mile. “Mr. Ross’ plan was to have an outlying
commercial district. It would be very easy for motorists to travel down there. Department stores could have their parking lots behind the stores. They saw the Miracle Mile as a destination that could link all other important parts of the city,” Vavala said. “It took a while for the Miracle Mile to take off as he envisioned. It wasn’t considered a ‘miracle’ right away. Around 1928, one of Mr. Ross’ friends, Foster Stewart, dubbed the strip the Miracle Mile. The miracle was that Ross believed he could create this commercial strip that was not connected to anything at the time, and it could end up being successful.” One of the reasons Ross would need a miracle to make his vision a reality was that the neighborhoods around Wilshire Boulevard were zoned as residential. He was never successful in persuading the city to change the area’s zoning to commercial, but business development was allowed adjacent to Wilshire Boulevard at the time, and Ross was able to get approval for projects on a parcel-by-parcel basis. It allowed Ross to plan businesses and stores the way he envisioned, with art deco storefronts, and parking lots allowing for easy access to the rear. Vavala said one of the early milestones on the Miracle Mile was the completion in 1928 of the Wilshire Center Building at
photo by Edwin Folven
Visitors to the Miracle Mile are greeted by the official sign near Fairfax Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard. An additional sign was installed at La Brea and Wilshire last week.
5514 Wilshire Blvd., which housed the Desmond’s Department store. The art deco design became a model for future buildings in the area, and the opening of Desmond’s showed other retailers that a department store could succeed in the neighborhood. Vavala said Desmond’s moved from its downtown location and made the Miracle Mile its headquarters, and soon after, Silverwood’s Men’s Store also rented space in the building. “It was among the first multi-story office towers in the area,” Vavala said. “It was a new breed of building and its design was a great way to advertise as well, and other
retailers started to take notice.” Other art deco buildings began taking shape around the same time, including the E. Clem building, completed in 1930 at the northeast corner of Wilshire Boulevard and La Brea Avenue, and the Dominguez Wilshire Building, built at 5410 Wilshire Blvd. It featured clothing stores such as C.H. Baker Shoes and Benson Hoisery, and all of the units were constructed around Ross’ original concept of having separate entrances to the rear, and display windows facing the commercial strip. The art deco El Rey Theater, at 5515 Wilshire Blvd., was completed in 1936, and
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has been designated a cultural historic monument by the City of Los Angeles. Originally a like the May Company building.” movie theatre, the venue has now been converted into a nightclub and concert venue. Lyn Cohen, the president of the Miracle Mile Civic Coalition, said her group is directly Vavala said one of the historically significant buildings that is no longer on the Miracle involved in improvement projects on the Miracle Mile, and recently replaced the historic Mile housed the Coulter’s Department store at Wilshire and Hauser Boulevards. Completed Miracle Mile sign near La Brea Avenue, which was knocked over by a car several years ago. in 1938, the building was “a monument to streamline moderne architecture,” according to Cohen also said the group is looking into organizing the restaurants in the area, and creating a Vavala. The building was demolished in the 1980s and the lot sat vacant until housing was “Miracle Mile Restaurant Row.” completed at the site in the 2000s. “The Civic Coalition is interested in continuing the revitalization of the Miracle Mile, and Another major department store came to the area in 1939, when the May Co. was com- looking at the area as a home town,” Cohen added. “It’s about building on the concept of pleted at 6067 Wilshire Blvd., at the corner with Fairfax Avenue. The store featured a repli- Museum Row, and the museums working together, and contemporary concepts like creatca of a 1930’s era perfume bottle, and it remains one of the most recognizable buildings on ing a restaurant row. We want to preserve the area and work on mutually beneficial things, the Miracle Mile. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art purchased the building in the establish a network of community late 1990s and converted it into museum space known as LACMA West. members to work on the image of Vavala said the Miracle Mile began its transformation into the business center it is today the Miracle Mile and educate the in the 1950s and ’60s. The department stores closed, and more office towers started spring- community about what is going ing up. Also in the 1960s, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art opened in the Miracle on here.” Mile, followed by the George C. Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits. Vavala said the Los Angeles Conservancy continues to study buildings and fight for the preservation of the Miracle Mile as a historic center of Los Angeles. The area has undergone a new renaissance over the past decade, as new housing developments have been completed, many utilizing the familiar art deco facades that originally made the area famous. “The Miracle Mile has a large number of historic sites and important architecture, and it would be great to have these buildings remain for future generations,” Vavala added. “We photo by Edwin Folven A statue of the visionary Miracle Mile want to see the historic photo by Edwin Folven developer A.W. Ross is located at structures revitalized, and the The Wilshire Center Building was one of the first art deco landmarks on the Miracle Mile, and was key might be adaptive reuse, home to the Desmond’s and Silverwoods department stores. Wilshire and Curson Avenue.
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Cansof Ajax ontheWall by edwin folven
he window displays at the 99 Cents Only Stores, with the deliberate and symmetrically arranged boxes of detergent, kids’ cereal and colorful cans of peaches, create a hypnotic art form, drawing customers into the store for a bargain under a buck. Eric Schiffer, the CEO of the 99 Cents Only stores, said the window displays were instituted by David Gold, the company’s founder, who wanted customers to see the stores’ quality and diversity before they entered. “It is one of our trademarks,” Schiffer said. “The idea behind it was the window displays are advertising to get people into the store. [Gold] thought about how the old department stores brought people into the stores by having colorful window displays, and he thought putting products in order next to other pretty products, with a lot of colors that contrast, would make the stores very attractive. It takes a lot of labor to do it, but we feel it is worth it.” Gold, a longtime Carthay Circle resident, opened the first 99 Cents Only Store on La Tijera Boulevard in the Westchester area in 1982. The idea of offering national name brand products, dairy and fresh produce for under $1 quickly caught on with shoppers, many of whom were families who found the stores were a great place to stretch their money. The basic philosophy continues today, and the chain has expanded to include 284 stores in California, Arizona, Nevada and Texas. The company is committed to being a family run organization. As chairman, Gold continues to provide valuable input and ideas about how to make the stores more appealing to customers. The day-to-day operations are overseen by Schiffer, who is Gold’s son-in-law. Other family members active in the company include Jeff Gold, the president and chief operating officer; Howard Gold, the executive vice president of special projects; and Schiffer’s wife, Karen, who is a buyer for the company. Schiffer, who married his wife in 1991 after meeting her on a blind date, joined the 99 Cents Only Stores later that year, starting out in finance administration. He served in different managerial positions until becoming president in 2000, and CEO in 2005. A Harvard Graduate, Schiffer worked as a venture capitalist prior to joining the 99 Cents Store team. “The great thing about the family was that
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
99 Cents Only Stores CEO Eric Schiffer Walks Us Down the Aisles photo by Edwin Folven
The window displays at the 99¢ Only Stores create dazzling pop art exhibits.
they allowed me to get involved in other areas,” Schiffer said. “Over time, the company grew, and we took on new responsibilities.” Schiffer added that the company’s employees, who are referred to as “99ers”, are also considered part of the family and are extremely important to the company’s success. “We all work very closely together as a team,” Schiffer said. “We have a lot of great employees, and a lot have been with us for many years. We have a great mix of old and new, and we try to retain that family feel.” Schiffer said one of his primary jobs is ensuring the company continues to operate under the original ideas and core values instituted by Gold in the beginning, that the stores would look like retail markets and not discount outlets, and that as many name brands as possible would be offered, primarily items that people need day-to-day, all for 99 cents. “The basic philosophy, that everything in the store be a great value, is a founding principle for us. We have not varied from that, and will never vary from that,” Schiffer said. “The fact that everything is a great value has kept people coming back in droves.” The 99 Cents Only Stores have been staples in the local area for more than two decades, since the store at Fairfax Avenue and 6th Street opened in 1989. The store on Wilshire Boulevard just west of Fairfax opened in 1994, and is the chain’s busiest, with $12 million a year in sales, according to Schiffer. Additional stores serving the community are located at La Brea and Willoughby Avenue, and on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. Schiffer said he does not know exactly why the Wilshire Boulevard store is the most popular, but said it may be because of the diversity of the community. He added that many customers come over from Beverly Hills, because “rich people like bargains too.” “It’s a special area. Being located there is very important for us,” Schiffer said. “There is so much going on, it’s a thriving area, and we are delighted to be there.” The stores have held fun promotions over the years, like awarding 99-second shopping sprees, and a promotion held on September 9, 2009, where the company paid for nine couples to get married at 9:19 a.m. on aisle 9 in the Sunset Boulevard store. Schiffer said they are always considering new promotions, and a future event may be speed dating held in the store for 99 seconds per
person. Numerous milestones have been marked in the company’s history, including opening the 99th store in 2001 in Montebello. One of the biggest milestones, according to Schiffer, was when the company went public on the New York Stock Exchange in 1996. A move is currently underway for the Schiffer-Gold family to purchase the company back from shareholders and take it private again, but Schiffer said he could not comment on the proposal. The CEO said that the 99 Cents Only Stores are able to offer great deals because of connections established with major manufacturers. “Almost every major name brand company in the country, we buy from,” Schiffer
said. “We just got in the store the finest name in chocolate, and it is a one time special deal. I am not allowed to say the name, but it is shaped like a triangle. We also have the best-priced reading glasses in the business.” Schiffer added that it is the great deals that will propel the company forward in the future. He said 99 Cents Only Stores is always redefining its inventory, which is one of the reasons the store is such a fun place to shop. “We are always getting great deals in, so if you are here one week, you may find something totally different the next,” Schiffer said. “There is always a wonderful selection throughout the store, but it always changes over time.”
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Park Labrea News/Beverly Press
41 April 28, 2011
French Bakery Builds Loyal Clientele in Los Angeles Normandie Bakery Itâ€™s a petite slice of France (*0. -0%/
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L.A.’s Top Dog Since 1939 BY JOSE MARTINEZ
f you’re driving down La Brea Avenue between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 a.m., you will come upon a strange sight. Scores of people waiting in line. Waiting in line for what? A Pink’s hot dog, of course. Established on the corner of La Brea and Melrose Avenues in 1939 as a large-wheeled pushcart, the depression-era prices at Pink’s Famous Chili Dogs garnered you a chili dog complete with a large bun, oversized hot dog, mustard, onions and thick chili for 10 cents. Entrepreneurial couple Paul and Betty Pink, unemployed at the time, borrowed $50 from Betty’s mother and purchased their hot dog cart. All these years later, anyone in Los Angeles with a craving for a tasty hot dog, still knows only one destination, Pink’s. Hungry noshers will wait in line for up to 45 minutes to get their fill of a variety of hot dogs and hamburgers. In 1946, the Pinks opened a permanent restaurant, the bustling kitchen that still stands in the same location today, using the original chili recipe from 1939. Paul and Betty have both passed away and now, the stand is run by the Pink children, Beverly
“Their background was in flowers,” Richard Pink pointed out. “That was their main business.” The flower shop lasted until 1958 when the Pinks converted the space into a clothing store that remained open until they retired in 1961. But through the years, Pink’s has been a constant neighborhood favorite that really solidified a relationship with the community. “Everybody that went to school to either Melrose, Bancroft, John Burroughs, Marshall, La Conte, Rosewood, or played ball at Poinsettia playground would come here,” Richard Pink said. “We were totally
photo by Jose Martinez
Gloria Pink and her husband Richard, now operate the family-run hot dog stand with sister Beverly Pink Wolfe.
Pink Wolfe, Richard Pink and his wife Gloria. “Our parents started Pink’s with a pushcart,” Beverly Pink Wolfe said. “They were happy with it just as a mom and pop business, but through the years, we have expanded.” Locals immediately gravitated to Pink’s, serving your basic, hearty comfort food, although its founders believed their flower shop, which opened next door in 1948, would be the family’s real means of support.
connected to the neighborhood. There are a lot of restaurants that we grew up with in this neighborhood that are no longer here. When people want to return to their neighborhood they want something that is familiar, and not just houses on a street. Pink’s is part of the culture and fabric of the neighborhood.” “When Pink’s first opened, it was just a hot dog, hamburger and tamale on the menu,” Gloria Pink added. “Then Richard got really creative and expanded the menu
because that would give people more reasons to keep coming back. Now we have about 25 different kinds of hot dogs. The lines have gotten longer and longer, but people don’t mind at all, they think of it as part of the experience. In L.A., you don’t talk to strangers very often, and here you have that 30-minute or 40-minute or longer wait and people develop a relationship.” Some of the creative and one-of-a-kind hot dogs on the menu include the Mulholland Drive Dog, Lord of the Rings Dog, Harry Potter Dog, as well as creations by Rosie O’Donnell, Huell Howser, and Martha Stewart. And then there’s the Dudamel Dog, named after conductor Gustavo Dudamel that the Pinks point out as the strangest menu item. Consisting of a stretch hot dog, guacamole, American and Swiss cheese, fajitas mix, and jalapeno slices topped with tortilla chips, this spicy dog was even featured on “60 Minutes”. “I didn’t want a customer to say there’s no reason to go back,” Richard Pink said of his menu additions. “We wanted to give people variety to come back and try another dog. You can’t get these hot dogs anywhere else.” With additional locations at City Walk, LAX, Las Vegas, San Diego, and the Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky, Ohio opening May 15, the mighty, little stand on La Brea Avenue is special to the Pinks. “This one is near and dear,” Richard Pink said. “The fact of the matter is people want to license us because this one is so successful. This one has to stay successful.”
Over the years, countless celebrities have become regulars at Pink’s. Over 200 photos of stars decorate the dining room area. Orson Welles still holds the record for the most hot dogs eaten in one sitting at 18. It was also at Pink’s where Bruce Willis reportedly proposed to Demi Moore. Each member of the Pink family has his and her own favorite memory. For Gloria Pink, it’s making friends with composer Bill Conti, a longtime customer. Beverly Pink Wolfe recalls the time Michelle Obama visited last summer. “She came with her two daughters and her mother and it was very exciting,” Pink Wolfe recalled. “She walked in and sat down and we served her. No one approached her, which was very nice, and when she was ready to leave everyone got up and clapped.” For Richard Pink, it’s the weeklong anniversary celebrations called Chili Dogs for Charity when celebrities come, one a night, and Pink’s donates the gross proceeds from the sales for a full hour to charity that Pink cherishes the most. “For the 70th anniversary, we sold our hot dogs for 70 cents for 70 minutes for seven days and we had a celebrity each night,” Pink explained. “And they would either serve dogs, like Henry Winkler or Jason Alexander did, or they would sign autographs. That was phenomenal.” With no signs of slowing down, Pink’s aims to be a landmark satisfying local and tourist appetites for as long as possible. “I want people to take away the experience of great food so they want to come back, with friendly service with a smile that can’t be duplicated somewhere else,” Richard Pink said. “There’s a real feeling of community and people come here to see a familiar face, like family,” Gloria Pink added. “This is a family-run business.”
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WOLFGANG PUCK LA’s Renowned Chef Who
Took California Cuisine Global
BY JOSE MARTINEZ
he name Wolfgang Puck is synonymous with fine dining, a brand that stands for quality and innovation. Nearly 30 years ago, Puck opened his Spago restaurant above the Sunset Strip, forever changing the Los Angeles culinary landscape. Opened in 1982, Spago pioneered what is now known as “California cuisine” and became famous for designer pizzas and pasta. “I think it’s really amazing to think we’ve been open thirty years, whereas
most of the restaurants when we opened are all gone, from Ma Maison to Le Dome to L’Orangerie, and Chasen’s,” Puck pointed out. “When I look back now, to see the change of restaurants, what is now chic or hot and how it has changed over the years. What proves success is staying power. It’s easy to be married for a year or two, but it’s hard to be married for twenty years. You have to have quality, you have to serve good food and offer good hospitality in a nice environment, and be consistent.” Seventies disco musician Giorgio Moroder, who was planning to create a musical called “Spago”, suggested Puck use the name for his restaurant. Although Moroder and Puck never could agree to terms to become partners in the restaurant, the name stuck nonetheless. Puck’s little pizza joint included some of today’s
biggest known chefs working together in cramped quarters. “When I opened the restaurant up on Sunset Boulevard I wanted it to be a neighborhood restaurant, really, with music,” Puck explained. “I wanted people to go late at night. I thought if I had music, people would come and have a glass of wine or champagne, and pizza and hangout. The first night I had made space for the music, but by the second night we put tables there because it was so busy. In the kitchen, Kazuto [Matsusaka] was on pantry; Mark Peel (Campanile Restaurant) was on pasta; I did the grill; Ed LaDou (Caioti, California Pizza Kitchen) did pizzas; and Nancy Silverton (La Brea Bakery, Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza) did desserts. It’s amazing it all started there.” Puck originally trained as an apprentice under Raymond Thuilier at L’Oustau de Baumaniere in Provence, at Hotel de Paris in Monaco, and at Maxim’s Paris before moving to the United States in 1973 at age 25. After two years at La Tour in Indianapolis, Puck moved to Los Angeles and began creating “California cuisine.” “I really thought a cuisine should reflect where you are, but it should also reflect the culture,” Puck said. “I loved to go to Chinatown and Little Tokyo. I felt the way it looked here was more like the South of France or the Riviera, it’s on the sea and the weather is nice so the restaurant should be relaxing and not like a restaurant in New York or Paris. I wanted a relaxed atmosphere and used local ingredients as much as possible and cooked in a multicultural way. Then, we had tuna sashimi on the menu. Now, you can find it in every restaurant in the world, but ours was the first one.” “I tried to make [plates] like Peking Duck; and spring rolls; and we made pizza with duck sausage, Santa Barbara shrimp, and smoked salmon. Here on the West Coast, we don’t really have a history of food. We have different influences, but it’s not like every Sunday we’re going to eat roast beef and potatoes like the English do. Here, since there’s such a mixture of people… [California cuisine] caught on pretty fast because people wanted something different and they were ready for something
different.” Puck was one of the first celebrity chefs and Spago immediately caught the attention of the jet-set crowd. A-list actors, world photo by Jose Martinez famous musicians and studio Wolfgang Puck first introduced LA Diners to heads were regulars at Spago, and tuna tartare, and shrimp topped pizzas in the still are at his award-winning 1980s at his West Hollywood restaurant, Spago in Beverly Hills, which Spago. His culinary empire now includes Spago opened in 1997. Beverly Hills, Spago Las Vegas, Spago Maui, Some of Puck’s favorite cusCUT Beverly Hills, Chinois on Main, and tomers over the years include Wolfgang Bar and Grille. Orson Welles with whom he would eat lunch and drink champagne, as well as filmmaker Billy Wilder, actors Sidney Poitier and Tom quality, but it’s not consistent, and some Cruise, and musicians Jay-Z, Roger people make quality food but have bad service or aren’t in a nice place. Had I Waters, Elton John and Rod Stewart. Puck’s other local restaurants include opened Spago in East L.A., or South Cut in Beverly Hills, Chinois in Santa Central, it might have been different.” Another fine Puck touch is the music he Monica, WP24 in downtown, Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill at L.A. Live, and Red / selects at his restaurants. You won’t hear classical at a Wolfgang Puck restaurant. He’s more at ease blasting tunes from the Rolling Stones and U2. “We don’t want to be an old fashioned “Bruce Willis called me over restaurant,” Puck said. “Why play boring one time and asked, music? Bruce Willis called me over one time and asked, ‘Wolfgang, who’s in ‘Wolfgang, who’s in charge charge of the music here?’ And I said it was of the music here?’ And I me, and he said there’s nothing better than having my favorite steak and listening to said it was me, and he said Pink Floyd.” there’s nothing better than When Puck teamed up with famed having my favorite steak and Hollywood agent Swifty Lazar to cater and house the exclusive Oscar dinner at Spago, listening to Pink Floyd.” Puck’s ‘hot’ meter went up several degrees. He has been catering the post-Oscar Wolfgang Puck Governor’s Ball for 17 years. Considering Restaurateur that Puck actually dreamed of moving to San Francisco when he left Indianapolis, he has absolutely no regrets. “I think L.A. is a great city to live in,” Seven in West Hollywood. Puck declared. “I wouldn’t live anywhere A meal at one of Puck’s restaurants is an experience. The attention to detail, from else. I could move to New York for a little the kitchen to the meticulous way the staff bit and I can move to London for a little bit, but I really think L.A. is home. I started my folds a napkin is impressive. “I think we stand for quality, and in the business here, my family is here; my kids end, if you do quality it always rises to the go to school here. L.A. is really a great top,” Puck said. “There are people who do place to live.”
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Canter’s 80 years of Pastrami on Rye and ‘Matzo’ More! by edwin folven
anter’s Deli on Fairfax Avenue is the kind of place where if you eat there once, you will become a lifelong customer. The food, history, vibrant atmosphere and friendly staff make Canter’s Deli one of the icons of Los Angeles. This year, Canter’s Deli is celebrating its 80th anniversary, after being founded in 1931 in Boyle Heights by Ben Canter and his brothers. The deli moved to Fairfax Avenue in 1948, and into its current location at 419 N. Fairfax Ave. in 1953. The deli is one of those places people remember from when they were children, and years later bring their children back for the same experience. It is not uncommon to see three or four generations of families sitting around one of the many tables, enjoying a corned beef or pastrami on rye, according to Jacqueline and Marc Canter, who are among an extended family that runs the deli today. It is also not uncommon to see some of the same people eating at the deli every day, Marc added. Canter’s closes only on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, and is a mainstay among the breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late-night crowds. “One thing is the atmosphere. We are open 24-hours, and we are dependable,” Marc said. “No matter what time of day, you can come here and get comfort food. The food is good, and you get a good feeling coming here. The corned beef and pastrami sandwiches are the most popular, and a lot of people like the Reuben. The matzo ball soup is also very popular.” Jacqueline and Marc Canter are among the third generation of the family carrying on the Canter’s tradition. Both can be found at the deli on most days, taking care of day-to-day operations. Marc is a “jack of all trades” who repairs equipment or tends to problems when they come up. Jacqueline takes care of the hiring and personnel matters, and is always working in the dining room seating customers and ensuring their meals are being served promptly. Both have longtime ties to the Fairfax District. Marc continues to live in the local area, while Jacqueline now calls Westwood home. A graduate of Fairfax High School,
Jacqueline is also committed to the neighborhood. As the founder and former president of the Fairfax Business Association, she has helped bring about improvements such as graffiti removal, sidewalk cleanup, tree trimming and trash removal. “It’s an ongoing process, keeping Fairfax clean and graffiti free and looking nice,” Jacqueline Canter said. “I take it upon myself to take care of the street and make it look presentable. It’s part of what I do every single day. I walk the street and look for graffiti, look for trash and then call the graffiti removal companies or the city to make sure it is cleaned up.” While many local residents visit Canter’s regularly, the deli is also a destination for tourists and visitors from the East Coast. Marc said many people tell him Canter’s is the only place in town to get real East Coast-style deli food. “We get a lot of people who get off the plane and the first place they come is to Canter’s,” Marc said. “When people come in from out of town, you take them to Disneyland, or you take them to Venice Beach, and then you take them to Canter’s.” Not only is Canter’s a favorite of visitors and L.A. residents, it has been and still is a destination for celebrities. Over the years, some of Hollywood’s elite have dined at the deli, including Marilyn Monroe, Cary Grant, Gregory Peck, Elizabeth Taylor and Danny Thomas. Some of the legends of rock ‘n’ roll who have enjoyed the food include Elvis Presley, Mick Jagger, and the members of The Beatles. Stars who have visited recently include Johnny Depp, Seth Rogan and Leonardo Di Caprio. KROQ DJ Rodney Bingenheimer has his own table that he frequently reserves. Slash, the guitarist from Guns N’
Roses, once worked at the restaurant and is a longtime friend of Marc. Marc said he has known Slash, whose real name is Saul Hudson, since the 5th grade when they both attended 3rd Street Elementary School. Marc has written a book titled “Reckless Road: Guns N’ Roses”, which documents the band’s rise to popularity. The band members describe Marc as another “member of the band” because he meticulously documented the group during the 1980s on film, photo-
photo by Edwin Folven
Brother and sister, Marc and Jaqueline Canter, are third generation family members running the 24-hour deli on Fairfax Avenue.
graphs and recordings. “I was big rock ‘n’ roll fan when I was a teenager. We (Marc and Slash) were both into BMX bikes, and we shared a lot of the same interests,” Marc added. “Slash was always into drawing and was a great artist. Later, he started playing guitar, and you could tell there was something there. I saw a ‘Led Zeppelin’ in the making. I documented every single show they did in Los Angeles, approximately 50 gigs.” Marc’s book contains hundreds of photos, narratives, information on the band, and rare items such as backstage passes and concert flyers. While Guns N’ Roses was one of the major bands that is part of the Canter’s history, there are many notable others. The Kibitz Room, a lounge at Canter’s that opened in 1961, has featured many big name bands of today when they were in their formative years, like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Wallflowers, which was once the house band at the Kibitz Room. Jacqueline said the bar remains a popular place for young people who come to Canter’s to enjoy new music. Much about Canter’s has stayed the same over the years, but Jacqueline and Marc said they are always keeping an eye on the future. Canter’s now has a food
truck that visits other neighborhoods, and the deli has a satellite location at the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Jacqueline said one of her biggest passions is helping others, and said donations are made daily to social service organizations such as the SOVA food pantry. She added that she routinely helps with functions at Fairfax High, Hancock Park Elementary and other local schools. She said one of the best things about the local area is that it has remained much as it was over the past five decades. “Fairfax is very much like New York, like The Village, and what makes Fairfax unique is you have the old and the new. You have tattoo parlors and skateboard shops, and then you have Canter’s. Fairfax is very eclectic.” Marc said they are beginning plans for the 80th anniversary, and a celebration will be held in July. The deli’s classic sandwiches will be sold for 80 cents. Customers can count on coming to Canter’s for the same experience they had on their first visit for years to come. “Our goal is to keep it as good as it has been, and to keep improving, because there are always ways to improve,” Marc added.
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Susan Feniger Takes it to the STREETS by jose martinez
early 30 years ago, young up-and-coming chefs Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken were making a name for themselves cooking on a hibachi on a Melrose Avenue alley at their first joint venture restaurant, City Café . Since then, the dynamic duo, later known as “Two Hot Tamales” from their Food Network series, have been fixtures of the local culinary scene, with successful restaurants around town like City, formerly on La Brea Avenue, Border Grill, with locations in Santa Monica, downtown L.A., LAX, and Las Vegas, and most recently, Feniger’s first self-opened restaurant, Street on Highland Avenue. Feniger decided to come back to the neighborhood where her career first took off when opening Street, which is celebrating its one-year anniversary this month. “This is my old stomping grounds,” Feniger pointed out. “Thirty years ago in 1981, I opened City Café on Melrose next to l.a. Eyeworks. That was my very first restaurant here, and Mary Sue and I partnered on that. I lived in a duplex on Mansfield and Beverly. Then Mary Sue and I opened City on La Brea, so I feel this neighborhood is where I started my restaurant career. When I was looking to do Street, I wanted to go where I had my roots and a connection with the neighborhood.” Further cementing her relationship to the area is the fact that Feniger sits on the board of the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center. “This board of powerful leaders in our community is fantastic,” Feniger said. “The work we get accomplished continues to blow me away each and every time we are
all together. To be a part of an organization that is making such big steps in every way is an honor. I would like to think I do more than I do, but I co-chair the event called Simply Divine each year, a food and wine event in Beverly Hills. I try to attend board meetings and retreats, and open my restaurants to business meetings for committees, and for cocktail parties for fundraisers. It’s a center that takes pride in everything we are.” An award-winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and radio and TV personality, Feniger is a classically trained graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. She was raised in Toledo, Ohio and found influence in her mother’s home cooking, as well as savory dishes from around the world. “My mom was a fantastic cook, and part of being a good cook is seasoning things well,” Feniger said. “When she’d grill a steak she’d use paprika, Worcestershire, and just season it perfectly, which is no different than what I do now. I may turn to Latin, Indian or Asian flavors, but it’s all the same. In high school my parents let me live in Holland and Israel for a little while and I think that really opened my eyes to other cultures and their food.” Upon her arrival in Los Angeles, Feniger, who had been working in Chicago’s famed Le Perroquet, began her local career working alongside Wolfgang Puck and immediately felt comfortable in his kitchen. “I came from Chicago and interviewed with Wolf, L’Ermitage, Ken Frank at La Toque, and L’Orangerie, those were the four restaurants I was looking at,” Feniger recalled. “And I really wanted to get into Ma Maison. It was the least stuffy and Wolf was the least stuffy and the friendliest. I had all my training in French restaurants, but I was
drawn to the food that Wolf was doing. It big City there was something really wonderwas more California cuisine and I remember ful connecting with people. The customers calling Mary Sue and saying, ‘You’re not needed a connection to the kitchen, to see going to believe this, you can wear tennis what’s happening. I think the restaurant shoes in this business is about peokitchen.’ Ma Maison ple, whether it’s the “I was a Midwest girl and had people that work for felt so much looser and so much worked in Upstate New York and you, from the dishyounger. And I was a washer to the general Midwest girl and had Kansas City and the tickets would manager, to the cusworked in Upstate tomers, and the percome in [at Ma Maison] and New York and son who gets a Coke they’d be orders from Jane Fonda, at the bar is just as Kansas City and the tickets would come important as the perRaquel Welch, Paul Newman, in [at Ma Maison] who’s sitting and Orson Welles. It was the place son and they’d be orders spending $100. It’s a where everybody went. from Jane Fonda, service-oriented busiRaquel Welch, Paul ness.” I’m still totally star struck.” Newman, Orson Over the years, Welles. It was the Feniger has seen the place where everybody went. I’m still total- Los Angeles food scene rise from the shadly star struck.” ows of culinary cities such as New York and Feniger teamed up with Milliken and San Francisco, and is proud of the level of founded City Café , without a stove in their success and recognition she and her adopted kitchen. They eventually expanded and city have reached. opened City on the corner of La Brea and Looking at the future of the Los Angeles Second Avenues. food landscape, the sky is the limit accord“I’ve always been drawn to areas that ing to Feniger. Just as she started from humaren’t developed,” Feniger noted. “I was on ble beginnings, Feniger believes new chefs my moped riding up and down the streets can do the same, thanks to the current food and saw this old carpet warehouse on truck phenomenon. Second and La Brea. It was owned by two “The great thing about the trucks is that it brothers and you literally couldn’t find them, brings the streets out there to life, because they were in the very back at their little desk. L.A. isn’t a walking city, so you don’t have And I talked to them and eventually con- the great street carts that many cities have,” vinced them to let us take over and they Feniger noted. “I love it! I’ve always been moved their business to the Valley. I loved drawn to street food. I loved the taco trucks that building! It was on the corner and close even before the craze.” to City Café on Melrose Avenue. I just With her heart buried deep in the Hancock loved where it was.” Park and Miracle Mile communities, City became a hot spot and was highlight- Feniger loves every savory morsel that Los ed by its live camera feed of all the action in Angeles embodies. the kitchen displayed on monitors above the “I see L.A. more ahead of its time than bar. any city in the states, even New York. It’s “That was fun,” Feniger recalled. “At City more progressive and edgy. There’s a youthCafé, to go to the bathroom you had to go ful culture about L.A. I see our restaurants as through the kitchen, so when we opened the that too, not too serious, not too fancy.”
photo by Jose Martinez
After 30 years of operating several renowned LA restaurants, Susan Feniger, owner and chef of Street, is still one hot tamale.
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grab your Picnic basket
LA’s Superbowl Turns 90 I by rafael guerrero
n 1919, the Theatre Arts Alliance incorporated and purchased 59 acres in Bolton Canyon for $47,500 to build a community park and art center. Three years later, the Hollywood Bowl was born. The iconic venue has hosted some of the most notable acts in history, ranging from Frank Sinatra becoming the first pop singer to perform at the Bowl in 1945 to hosting the debut of a then unknown tenor named Luciano Pavarotti making his debut as “Rodolfo” in “La Boheme.” The bowl had humble beginnings, with some of the early shows being small community events. It was during those early years when the venue was first referred to as the “Hollywood Bowl.” In 1920, the Hollywood May Festival was the first event where the Bowl charged admission. The first official season of programming at the Hollywood Bowl began in July 1922 with “Symphonies Under the Stars,” with Alfred Hertz conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic. For ninety years, the bowl has lit up summer nights with memorable acts, such as Frank Sinatra in 1943, and “The Beatles”, who made their first appearance in 1964. The Hollywood Bowl will be tantalizing guests now until the 2011 opening on June 17. “Each day until the opening, we will be posting historical facts about the bowl on the website, Facebook and Twitter,” said Sophie Jefferies, spokesperson for the Hollywood Bowl. The “90 Stories in 90 Days” campaign will offer both performance highlights at the Hollywood Bowl and structural improvements done during the venue’s long history. Another campaign designed to promote the Hollywood Bowl’s 90th season will be the “Story in Every Seat” campaign. People are encouraged to submit their personal stories involving the bowl, whether it be a proposal or just a great show they saw at the venue. Opening night will be true to bowl form and feature a variety of great acts. “There will be something for everyone,” Jefferies said. “It’s really difficult to pick one highlight coming up this season.” Some of the early events of the upcoming season include the Mariachi USA Festival on June 18 and a “Grease” Sing-A-Long on June 24. Other events scheduled for the 90th season include the Jazz Festival, an 80s night and a production of Westside Story. The Hollywood Bowl traditionally holds a musical every season and this year “Hairspray” will have a run at the venue. Events in July include Sarah McLachlan performing with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra on July 15 and 16 and Dolly Parton will perform the following week. Eddie Izzard’s “Stripped to the Bowl” show will be held July 20 and will make history as the first solo comedy show ever held at the Hollywood Bowl. Along with those attractions, the Bowl will continue to offer its classical music offerings every Tuesday and Thursday as well as its annual July 4th Fireworks Spectacular, with Daryl Hall and John Oates as this season’s special guests. “It’s always great at the Hollywood Bowl,” Jefferies said.
photo courtesy of the Hollywood Bowl
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Father Greg Boyle, a.k.a. ‘Homeboy-in-Charge’ Founder of Homeboy Industries Changes Lives, One at a Time by jose martinez
a line of tortilla chips and salsa that are sold at 256 Ralphs stores throughout Southern California. In 2007, Father Boyle was able to open the $8.5 million Fran and Ray Stark Homeboy Industries headquarters through gifts and philanthropic contributions. Today, Homeboy Industries is the only intervention program of its kind. Father Boyle’s motto, “nothing stops a bullet like a
job” is his constant mantra to motivate gang members to work. No job development center in Los Angeles County draws more at-risk, gang impacted youth seeking to redirect their lives. Even during a financial and budget crisis in 2010, Father Boyle would not waver. “[Our businesses] represent the backbone of the work we do, and we are committed to keeping them up and running,” Father Boyle stated. “We are committed to keeping our doors open, even if we are unable to hire people in our job readiness program. Core support services, will remain open and available to those who want to use them.” One of eight children to parents Kathleen and Bernie Boyle, Father Boyle graduated from Loyola High School, received his Bachelors degree at Gonzaga University, and earned Masters degrees from Loyola
ome people see a community in need and sympathize, others are willing to make a donation or sign a petition, but a select few jump right in and get their hands dirty. Father Gregory Boyle, a Jesuit priest, is just such a person. For more than 20 years he has relentlessly worked to find jobs and improve lives for former gang members in Los Angeles. As pastor at Dolores Mission in Boyle Heights, Father Boyle became involved with the parish and the surrounding community. He soon began developing different programs to help the working poor: building a shelter for homeless immigrants; a cooperative daycare; a school; and a jobs program for gang members. This early interest with gang members eventually led Father Boyle, dubbed “Father G” by the homies he calls family, to create Jobs for a Future in 1988 to help kids “plan for their futures instead of their funerals.” To further this effort, Father Boyle launched Homeboy Bakery in 1992 to provide a place for employment for rival gang members. The bakery proved so successful that Homeboy Industries was created in 2001, which now includes Homegirl Cafe, a silk screening busiphoto courtesy of Homeboy Industries ness, tatoo removal, among other employment opportunities for at-risk young people. Michael and Karen Villalpando, publishers of the Park Labrea News and Beverly Most recently, Homeboy Industries launched Press, have been strong supporters of Father Greg Boyle and Homeboy Industries.
51 April 28, 2011 Marymount University, the Weston School of Theology, and the Jesuit School of Theology. A big supporter of Father Boyle’s is Councilmember Tom LaBonge, 4th District. “Father Boyle is a very special human being,” LaBonge said. “He came from the community I represent, and he crossed the Fourth Street Bridge into the heart of Boyle Heights. Often on my way home, I will go by and the only light on in the place is Greg’s, and he’s still working. More people like him are needed. There are no boundaries to the respect people have for him.” Father Boyle has another ardent advocate in Park Labrea News/Beverly Press Publisher Michael Villalpando, who grew up in La Puente. He first heard of Boyle during an NPR interview nearly ten years ago, and was immediately inspired by the man. “He was involved in gang intervention through jobs and I resolved to meet him,” Villalpando said. “We have since become good friends, and he has deeply influenced my life. It is my desire to do everything I possibly can to promote all of Father Boyle’s good work through the resources that I’ve been so fortunate to have.” In 2010, Father Boyle wrote “Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion”, a book recollecting his 20+ years in the barrio. Now putting former gang members through a solar panel training program, Boyle is always looking one step ahead, and acknowledges those who help him. “We remain tremendously grateful to those who have and continue to stand with us, who have continued to believe in the transformation power of hope, and who are committed to standing with the demonized until the demonizing stops,” Boyle said.
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The TAO of MAD A Trip Across the Pond Leads to a Long Career and a Happy Family By MAdeLeine SHAner
hen our lovely publisher, Karen, asked me to write something for the 65th Anniversary Issue of Parklabrea News/Beverly Press, I drew a blank. I didn’t have the slightest idea what to write. Finally, with the deadline for submission fast approaching, I decided the best I could come up with was a straightforward ‘Show and Tell’ of my experiences since I swam across the pond from England in 1956, specifically to be in show business, even more specifically, to be a movie star. Doesn’t everyone? And, to be honest, even more specifically, I came to get out of a job teaching bored teenagers how to parse sentences, do the math, and speak the poetry of our greatest writers. Since my math was limited by my inability to add, subtract, multiply and divide (forget geometry, algebra and calculus), and my love of poetry, drama and the spoken and written word didn’t extend to seeing and hearing it garbled and desecrated by vitally uninterested girls and boys whose only desire was to get out of school and swing with the real world of other boys and girls, and clubs and bars , I manufactured an excuse about having to join my family who needed me in California, where most of them had already moved to avoid the British weather. As a kind of side-bar here – after all, this is a tell-all newspaper – my parents had preceded me to California when I was in college, a budding actress/future movie star nevertheless electing to teach speech and drama first, before I was ‘discovered’. My mother had called me at school to tell me they were emigrating to America with my younger sister, and invited me to go with them. “Absolutely not”, I had responded, “I can’t even imagine teaching Shakespeare to children with American accents. My gawd!” Methinks I was a bit of a culture snob, and not a very nice person. But, if we want to get really specific, I had just broken up with a serious boyfriend and had decided my life was virtually over anyway, so how could it be any worse under sunny skies? Well, I came and I saw, but didn’t exactly conquer right away (there were some lean years), but here I am, fifty-plus years later, in love with a wonderful guy, married with children (well, they’re both men now), a semi-responsible adult with a lovely home, a pool, a car, a mortgage, and a job in the show and tell business which is almost as good as my target occupation, show business. Think about it –I see
SHOWS, and my BUSINESS is to write about them every week in Parklabrea News/Beverly Press. And then it got better. For the last few years, as well as writing reviews, I have been Copy Editing here at my home away from home, above Hollywood Lutheran Church, with my lovely extended family –
Karen and Michael and their beautiful daughters, whom I’ve watched grow up before my very eyes, and who are following closely in their parents’ footsteps – Emily at her mother’s Alma Mater in Columbia, Mo, studying – what else – journalism, and Rebecca, who already writes beautifully (she’s done some very wellinformed movie reviews), occasionally
coming in during vacations to lend a hand on the computers. It couldn’t get much better. Just think, if I’d stayed in England, teaching disinterested girls and boys, and marrying my then boyfriend, I’d never’ve gotten into showbiz. Or met Karen and Michael…or be exploiting my Tao now. What a loss that would have been!
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Our Theatre Critic, Madeleine Shaner, and her husband, John, frequently attend film premieres, theatrical productions and special events in Hollywood.
Rosalie Klein a purveyor of the American Dream
â€œWe have advertised in the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press for the past 15 years, and look forward to the next 15.â€?
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L.A. Zoo Stays Wet andWild
By Edwin FolvEn
he plains of Africa, the jungles of South America or the outback of Australia are exotic locales many Angelenos may not have the opportunity to visit. But you don’t have to be an armchair traveler to enjoy these far-away places. You can experience them all just a short trip away at the Los Angeles Zoo. The 132-acre zoo has one of the top collections in the country of wildlife and plants from around the world. The recentlyopened “Elephants of Asia” highlights the history and culture surrounding the Elephants of Thailand, India, China and Cambodia, while offering five public viewing stations. The “Campo Gorilla Reserve” is home to seven western lowland gorillas. The zoo opened in 1966 and is owned and operated by the City of Los Angeles. It features more than 1,100 animals representing over 250 species, many of them endan-
photos courtesy of the Los Angeles Zoo
Various exhibits at the Los Angeles Zoo feature animals like those pictured here.
gered. Open every day except Christmas, the zoo is one of the only places in the country to view a Sumatran tiger, mountain tapir or an okapi. Some of the signature permanent exhibits are the “Dragons of Komodo”, which showcases the world’s largest lizards in a habitat simulating their native environment in Indonesia, and the “Chimpanzees of Mahale Mountain”, home to one of the largest groups of those primates in country. Koalas, kangaroos, walla-
Congratulations to the Park La Brea News Beverly Press on your 65th Anniversary Issue.
“I am so honored to represent the communities of Park La Brea, Hollywood, and the Miracle Mile in the U.S. House of Representatives, and I am proud to take part in this celebration of the people and places that make our community so special.”
bies and echidnas can be found in the zoo’s sprawling Australian exhibit.` Species native to California inhabit the “Sea Life Cliffs”, a replica of the state’s rocky coastline that is home to a variety of seals. The zoo is supported by the non-profit Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association, which has more than 72,000 members and frequently hosts special educational programs and events, such as the annual “Beastly Ball” fundraiser. GLAZA is also
K R A M E R L a w
at the forefront of the zoo’s conservation efforts, which involves work on boosting populations of the endangered California condor. New exhibits and programs will open at the zoo in the near future, such as the Moss Family Conservation Carousel, a children’s ride set to debut in late spring. The Lair Center is scheduled to open this fall, and will be home to the zoo’s living reptiles and amphibians, arranged in one building that will showcase species from around the world, and another that will house specimens from the United States and Mexico. The zoo’s expansive gardens with more than 7,400 plants and over 800 species, is also a huge attraction. With more than 1.5 million visitors each year, the zoo is one of the city’s top entertainment destinations, and a favorite of tourists and generations of Angelenos.
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lA’s Unique Dining Adventures by jill weinlein
os Angeles is a melting pot, and for L.A. foodies, this bodes very well. Every type of cuisine imaginable is available in the City of Angels. Some are new, but many have withstood the the ever-changing times, landscape and trends. It’s amazing how many restaurants are still going strong with a huge following because of some simple elements: fresh food, fun atmosphere, reasonable prices, and a management that treats employees like family. Some establishments in Los Angeles have had employees working for them for over 50 years. For the 65th anniversary issue, we salute these longstanding establishments.
El Coyote Mexican Cafe 80 Years in Los Angeles Craving Mexican food, Grace Kelly and the Prince of Monaco walked into El Coyote years ago while on a visit to Los Angeles. The host in front didn’t recognize them and asked for their name to be added to the waiting list. At prime hours, El Coyote always has a waiting list. The royal Prince Rainier III was patient and waited for his name to be called before escorting his beautiful wife to dinner. Family owned and operated since 1931, this friendly California style Mexican restaurant is filled with people of all ages ordering huge burritos covered with their special Mexican sauce and drinking El Coyote’s world famous house margarita. With 90 employees, the average staff has
been with the family for 15 to 20 years. The last server hired was over 10 years ago. Manager Maria Garcia just celebrated 53 years of employment at El Coyote and waitress Lucy Borjas has been there 44 years. 7312 Beverly Blvd., (323)939-7766
Musso & Franks Going strong for 92 years Charlie Chaplin and Rudolf Valentino used to race their horses down Hollywood Blvd. and tie up their steeds in front of Musso & Franks. The first one to step inside the restaurant would be treated to lunch by the loser. Charlie Chaplin was such a regular at the restaurant that he had his own booth by the window. Frank Sinatra enjoyed a filet mignon while drinking a martini. The bar has three bar-
tenders who combined, have over 100 years of experience in the restaurant. Some of their employees have worked at the iconic place for over 40 years. Luis Cortez has been there for the past 54 years. Ruben Rueda has been working at Musso & Franks for 46 years, while Gil Chaves has been there for 43 years, and Fredericka Kaye for 41 years. 6667 Hollywood Blvd. (323)467-7788.
Antonio’s 55 Years of Fiesta Fun Walking into this Mexican Hacienda, guests are welcomed by the handsome Antonio himself. Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and Gregory Peck frequently sat in the La Bodega private room that seats 20. They came to Antonio’s for the delectable margaritas with Antonio’s own tequila,
photo by Jill Weinlein
Manuel Felix has been a waiter at Musso & Franks for 37 years.
while enjoying the Chile rellenos, huevos rancheros and chicken mole. All over the restaurant are Antonio’s Hall of Fame photos with pictures of John Wayne, Tom Hanks and Jack Nicholson sitting next to Antonio. Bob Barker used to come in after hosting the popular Price is Right game show. “I bring actors and actresses good luck. Once their photo is on my wall their careers take off,“ shared Antonio. “My restaurant offers a strong and positive energy.” Come celebrate Cinco de Mayo at Antonio’s. 7470 Melrose Ave., (323)658-9060 see Restaurants page 56
Congratulates the Park Labrea News & Beverly Press for 65 Years of Spreading the News with Relish The Pink Famiy
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65th Anniversary family. Mr. Dan Tana and owner Sonja Perenecevic have created and maintained an environment where everyone, from the busboys to the acclaimed Chef Neno Mladenovic, are treated with the same level of respect. 9071 Santa Monica Blvd. (310)275-9444.
Philippe’s The Original One of the oldest Restaurants in LA Philippe’s started as a sandwich-stand on a corner. In 1918, a policeman stepped up to order a beef sandwich. The carver accidentally dropped a piece of French bread into a hot roasting pan of au jus. In a hurry, the policeman told the server to just slap the bread on the meat and wrap it up. The next day, he brought other policemen to Philippe’s and told the server to dip the bread in the jus again. That was how their famous French dipped sandwich was created. Plilippe’s is a hot spot during a Dodgers, Lakers or Kings game. Faithful patrons call in their orders and pick them up without having to wait in a long line. Groups of fans sit together while eating roast beef sandwiches served on a freshly baked French roll with tangy cole slaw, homemade potato and macaroni salads.
Pig ‘N Whistle 1920s Venue Restored to Hollywood Glamour Judy Garland celebrated her 16th birthday here. It was a fun hangout for Mickey Rooney, Spencer Tracy and Shirley Temple. The pub closed in 1950, but reopened after getting a $1.5 million makeover in 2001. The late Dennis Hopper often frequented Pig ‘N Whistle with friend Jack Nicholson, and Quentin Tarantino enjoys the traditional English bistro selections, such as shepherds’ pie and fish ‘n chips, in addition to steaks, seafood, pasta and salads. The Pig ‘N Whistle offers a terrific classic martini list and a signature bottle of wine and ten draft beer selections. British actors, Emma Thompson and Colin Firth were tickled to receive their stars at the front entrance to the Pig ‘N Whistle. Emma arrived with a real pig and enjoyed a pint of cold beer during the reception. Last year, The Iron Man 2 premiere party was held at the Pig ‘N Whistle with Mickey Rourke and Sylvestor Stallone in attendance. 6714 Hollywood Blvd., (323)463-0000.
Dan Tana’s Celebrating 47 Years this October The ‘70s rock group, The Eagles, often sat at table #4 to share beers and plates of spaghetti. While sitting in the restaurant drinking tequila, they were inspired to write their hit song “Tequila Sunrise”, and others. Dan Tana’s is one of the few restaurants where “stars” are treated as “regular” people. George Clooney, Ryan Phillipe, Jimmy Fallon, Larry King, Demi Lovato, Nicole Richie and Joel Madden frequent this ultimate Hollywood hideout. It’s known for oversized plates of classic Italian spaghetti and meatballs, chicken parmigiana, hand-made gnocchi and New York steak. Ask for bartender, Mike, he makes a terrific Ketel One vodka martini, straight up, and has been serving and entertaining the crowd for 44 years. Dan Tana’s is unique among other restaurants because every member of the staff is considered as
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press Their meats – roast beef, lamb, pork, turkey and ham – are cooked every three hours to maintain freshness and flavor. One of the carvers, Juanita, has been working at Philippe’s for over 40 years. She has sent all of her children to college and bought her own home while working at Philippe’s. 1001 N. Alameda St., (213)628-3781.
The Original Pantry Café 87 years Strong Since 1924, The Pantry has never closed and is never without a customer. They are open 24 hours a day and seven days a week. Craving pancakes at 2 a.m.? They serve them up hot anytime of the day. Don’t expect fancy, but the service is quick and the prices are reasonable. Most steaks and chops are under $20. Owned by the former Mayor of Los Angeles, Richard Riordan, the restaurant serves traditional American fare to fans going to the nearby Staples Center and Los Angeles Convention Center. Don’t be surprised to see a politician or a movie or TV star sitting at the counter or a table nearby. Cash is king here. They don’t take credit cards or checks. 877 S. Figueroa St. (213)972-9279.
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Frolic Room Historic Bar celebrates 80 years Many stories surround the history of the Frolic Room, including the rumor that Elizabeth Short, “The Black Dahlia”, was seen sipping a drink before her untimely demise. The bar was featured in a scene from the movie, “The Black Dahlia”, and “LA Confidential”. Known for their martinis, wine and beer, the Frolic Room was a home away from home for Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland and John Belushi. Ask for Reuben when you go to the Frolic Room, he has been at this cocktail lounge for over 20 years. Put some coins in the jukebox, pop some jiffy pop, sit down with a cocktail and melt back in time, while looking at the old 30s mural on the wall. There is a subway stop across the street. 6245 Hollywood Blvd., (323)462-5890.
Monday-Friday 3pm-7pm & 9pm-Close Wines by the Glass• Draft Beers Specialty Cocktails • Mojitos • Hand-Shaken Margaritas • Martinis
Join us for Sunday Brunch! Featuring Live Piano & Vocals Wed-Sun 6:30-9:30pm
of the Miracle Mile
5773 Wilshire Blvd. (323)937-7952 in the Museum Square • www.mariecallenders.com
Barney’s Beanery 91 Years Along Route 66 Westbound travelers driving from Chicago to Los Angeles would stop at Barney’s Beanery to trade in their out of state license plate for a a free pint of beer. This iconic establishment has been a “home-away-from-home” for many folks in our city. In the 60s and 70s, Barney’s was the epicenter for rock stars. Janis Joplin parked her psychedelic painted Porche in front and was known for throwing a few back at the bar. They say Jack Daniels was her friend. It’s been said Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison were shown the door for untold indiscretions. Years ago, Quentin Tarantino wrote one of his most of his successful films, “Pulp Fiction”, at his favorite booth at Barney’s. One of the managers, AJ, shared that an 82-year-old city worker recently came into see Restaurants page 58
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photo courtesy of TK Vodrey, Tom Bergin’s Tavern
Chris Doyle,the senior mixologist at Tom Bergin’s Tavern on Fairfax, hails from Waterford, Ireland and, now at 80 years old, has been bartending at the tavern since 1976.
Barney’s and reminisced about how his father brought him to Barney’s when he was 7 years old. Guests feel a sense of comfort and familiarity coming to Barney’s. “There is no pretense at Barney’s. You don’t have to know someone to get in and sit at a table,” AJ said. Server/manager, Dominique, has kept the restaurant running smoothly for years. For over 30 years, she has been the go-to-gal for
all the employees and is admired by all. 8447 Santa Monica Blvd., (323)654-2287.
Tom Bergin’s Tavern Oldest Irish Establishment in LA Walking through the Kelly green wood doors into the bar area, one can’t help but look up and glance around the walls to see
thousands of signed paper shamrocks. The names are of the regulars who have frequented this Irish establishment throughout the years. Founded in 1936, Tom Bergin, a lawyer who became a politician, offered a place where patrons can dine on authentic Irish entrees such as bangers & mash, Gaelic beef stew simmered in Guinness stout, and chicken Erin simmered in cream and cider with bacon, leeks and mushrooms. Bing Crosby and Pat O’Brien frequently dined here. In 1973, the tavern was sold to T.K Vodrey and his wife, Margaret Kathleen O’Hara. They kept the renowned horseshoe bar, which was the inspiration for the successful television show, “Cheers”. For those who want to live it up, they offer a “Tavern’s Treat for Two” nightly. You receive four Irish spring rolls, two Berginburgers with the works, and a chilled bottle of Dom Perignon for $159.95. Try some of their secret homemade musnuto. It’s a unique mustard and peanut butter sauce with quite a zip. 840 S. Fairfax Ave., (323)936-7151.
Miceli’s Singing Fun for 62 years While dining at Miceli’s don’t be surprised if your server belts out a musical show tune or serenades you with an Italian aria. Not only do they serve with a smile, but also many are musically trained and extremely talented. Be prepared to clap often. Located in the heart of Hollywood,
Park Labrea News/Beverly Press Miceli’s has been owned and operated by the Miceli family since 1949. They use Sicilian recipes passed down through their family to feed hungry tourists and locals. Some of their most popular dishes include chicken cacciatore served with a side of pasta marinara, cannelloni filled with sausage, spinach and cheese, or one of their famous pizzas. Throughout the multi-level restaurants are straw-wrapped Chianti bottles with names and dates. They cover the walls and hang from the ceiling. You too can be a part of the history. Share a bottle with a loved one, sign it, and your server will add it to the thousands of other bottles. 1646 N. Las Palmas Ave. (323)466-3438.
Lucy's El AdobeServing it up Hot & Spicy for 47 Years Our newly elected Governor of California, Jerry Brown first walked into Lucy’s El Adobe after graduating from Yale Law School in the early ‘70s. It’s where the budding politician fell in love with a mega rock/pop star, Linda Ronstadt. “Jerry had a meeting across the street at Paramount Studios. Afterwards, he walked into our restaurant and past a booth where Linda was sitting. My mom, Lucy, introduced Jerry to the [Grammy award winning]singer. He joined her at her table and the two talked for hours,” said Lucy’s daughter, Patricia. “As their relationship blossomed, they visited Lucy’s El Adobe often and became part of our family,” Patricia said. “Jerry is
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like an older brother to me and Linda a sister.” Lucy and her daughter were invited to Brown’s recent inaugural party. They don’t serve fancy Mexican fare, yet the food is made fresh by hand without any microwaves. It’s a great local place where patrons are treated like family. 5536 Melrose Ave., (323)462-9421.
We’re a one-of-a-kind shop selling thousands of stickers for crafters, parents, teachers and kids.
Du-par’s Back to the Basics Founded in 1938 at the Farmers Market, Du-pars has been flipping their famous hotcakes for generations. Known for their freshly baked fruit pies and savory chicken pot pies, people flock to Du-par’s from all over the city for their down-home cooking. “You can’t make a great meal without great raw ingredients with great people to serve it,” said Biff Naylor (pictured), owner of Du-par’s. “We went back to old school cooking.” Biff offers a “Beat the Clock” menu. Guests choose from four entrées; gourmet meatloaf, fish and chips, mushroom and tomato pasta and country fried chicken, and pay whatever the time is between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Recently voted “Best pancakes in Los Angeles,” it takes hours to make the “perfect” pancake mix. They use all fresh ingredients, whip up the batter and let it rest for hours. The result is the fluffiest and tastiest pancakes in town. Biff’s daughter Jennifer is the Executive Chef at Du-par’s. With her experience working with Wolfgang Puck, she has added specialty items to the Du-par’s menu such as crab cakes and oatmeal brulée. 6333 W. Third St., (323)933-8446.
Marconda’s Meats 6333 W. Third St. • Farmers Market • 323.938.5131
Serving Prime Beef, Lamb and Pork to loyal customers for 70 Years Family Owned at the Farmers Market since 1941
A Farmers Market Tradition Since 1934
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LACMA’s Art Collection Continues to Amaze from page 26
pant in the community,” LACMA president Melody Kanschat said. Of the many blockbuster exhibits held over the years, Kanschat said her favorite came in 1996, when impressionist painter Gustave Caillebate’s works were shown at LACMA, particularly his “Rainy Day in Paris” painting. “When I went to the Art Institute of Chicago, we had that painting there,” Kanschat recalled. “I connect with that painting because that’s when I fell in love with art.” LACMA tries to establish that love of art in all visitors, offering a diverse array of works that offers something for everyone. Current exhibitions such as David Smith’s “Cubes and Anarchy” brings together more than 100 works, including the largest grouping of the artist’s monumental “Cubis” and “Zigs”. “Elizabeth Taylor in Iran: Photographs by Firooz Zahedi” will be on display until June 12, and includes 32 images taken in 1976 during Taylor’s first and only visit to Iran. It is the first time the images have all been shown together. Kanschat added that the Tim Burton exhibit in particular may appeal to the Hollywood audience. It will include more than 700 of Burton’s works, including approximately 30 objects and sculptures. A film series featur-
“We have positioned ourselved over the last 22 years as an active participant in the community.” Melody Kanschat LACMA President ing some of Burton’s notable works is also planned. With new expansion and exciting exhibitions coming in the future — including a Stanley Kubrick exhibit in 2012 — LACMA is poised to remain at the center of the arts community, and will be an important part of Museum Row for years to come.
photo courtesy of LACMA
Right, Miguel Cabrera’s “The Divine Shepherdress” (La divina pastora), circa 1760, was purchased with funds provided by the Bernard and Edith Lewin Collection of Mexican Art Deaccession Fund and is currently on public view in the Art of the Americas Building.
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Griffith Observatory From page 20
The new planetarium features an improved Zeiss star projector, laser digital projection system, state-of-the-art aluminum dome and more comfortable seats. Some of the shows running at the planetarium theater include “Light of the Valkyries,” which explores the true nature of the aurora borealis, or northern lights. “Water is Life” takes visitors through the solar system in search of water, including trips to Mars and a trek through the ice of Jupiter’s moon, Europa. Each show is presented by staff member, something that Krupp said is unique to the observatory. “All of these programs are still presented by a live person and that does not happen anywhere else,” Krupp said. “Our emphasis is on storytelling.” Other exhibits at the new and improved Griffith Observatory include the “Wilder Hall of the Eye,” which illustrates the nature and progress of human observation of the sky and the tools used for that purpose. The Ahmanson “Hall of Sky” features one of the largest public solar telescopes that allows the public to examine in detail the moon and the sun. Aside from the physical additions to the observatory, new programs to reach out to the local community have also drawn more
photo Courtesy of Griffith Observatory
The Griffith Observatory (photographed here at dusk on the north end) remains one of the most iconic sites in L.A.
people to the observatory. One of the most popular programs is the observatory’s School Field Trip Program. It began in 2007 and is specifically aimed toward 5th grade classes. It is a two-and-a-half hour program that includes exhibit, building and theater experiences that incorporates elements of 5th grade curriculum. “When I first started here, I was always appalled when 600 school children were let loose in the observatory,” Krupp said.
He added that there were no programs in place and there was no real guided tour aimed toward young people, resulting in the children wandering aimlessly around the observatory. The current field trip program has helped educate more than 85,000 students since its inception and has lecturers who guide the students to help them learn, using the observatory’s unique facilities. “Space gets booked very quickly and we end up running out of dates,” Krupp said.
“Schools really love this program.” The Griffith Observatory celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2010 and Krupp said the observatory will always be an iconic piece of the landscape in Los Angeles. It will always be a beacon of innovation. “The future of the observatory is to remain an anchor in the community and in the cosmos,” Krupp said. “I expect more innovation and creativity to occur right here at the Griffith Observatory.”
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Developer Makes His Mark on the Miracle Mile J.H. Snyder is a Driving Force on Wilshire Boulevard Guild, as well as retail space that includes Marie Callender’s flagship restaurant. hen Developer J.H. “Jerry” Snyder also built and owns the Wilshire Snyder came to the Miracle Courtyard buildings, located at 5700-5750 Mile, he saw a neighborhood Wilshire Blvd., which are instantly recogripe with potential, and set out a plan to nizable for their red granite faç ades and renovate existing buildings and create new pyramid shape. CBS Radio and Infinity projects that would make Broadcasting are in the 27the area shine. story Snyder building at “When a neighborhood 5670 Wilshire Blvd. The starts to go the wrong Wilshire Hauser Center, way, people start to put which houses a Ralphs grobars on their windows and cery store, was the first give up. I came to the supermarket building in neighborhood in 1978 Los Angeles to have subwhen businesses were terranean parking. closing down and everySnyder also constructed one was leaving. Now, it’s the West Hollywood the place to be,” Snyder Gateway project at the corsaid. “I think we had a lot ner of La Brea Avenue and photo courtesy of J.H. Snyder Co. Santa Monica Boulevard, to do with that, by revitalizing Museum Square, J.H. Jerry Snyder sees a lot of which brought Target and and by redoing the Cal potential in the Miracle Mile. Best Buy stores to the Fed Building [5670 neighborhood. The Wilshire Blvd.], it gave us the nucleus, Hollywood Office Campus, a 245,000 then it just spread down the street.” square foot office building, and 900 N. The J.H. Snyder Company is housed in Cahuenga, a 45,000 square foot office the Museum Square Building, which building, are both located in the heart of Snyder bought in 1978 and completely Hollywood. renovated by 1983. The building features Snyder said the Miracle Mile and 530,000 square feet of high-end office Wilshire Boulevard are special because space and is home to the Screen Actors they represent the core of the business BY EDWIN FOLVEN
Providing the Community with Personal Service for 22 Years •Notary Public •Express Mail •UPS •FedEx •Fax Service •Packaging Supplies •Business Cards/Stationery
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community in Los Angeles. Snyder is currently involved in developing a project on a long vacant lot at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Vermont Avenue that will include 464 apartments and new retail space. The project is considered to be a key economic catalyst for that part of Wilshire Boulevard, and is expected to create 2,000 construction jobs and 270 permanent jobs once it is completed. Snyder, who lives in Bel Air, still believes Wilshire Boulevard is the heart of Los Angeles because of its proximity to downtown, the coast and other portions of the region. “This location is perfect for me. I have to go downtown a lot, and you go down 6th Street or 3rd Street and you’re down-
town in fifteen to thirty minutes,” Snyder said. “I can also get to my home in fifteen minutes, and it is quick out to the Valley. This area is very close to everything.” Snyder added that although the economy has been sluggish during the past couple of years, he said he believes it is on the rebound. Snyder said the demand for office space is growing, and the Miracle Mile will be at the forefront of that need. “We had a horrible recession and there has been no new office spaced built lately,” Snyder said. “The residential market is picking up, and the office market is filling up. When it is used up, we will have to build some new buildings. Things are moving forward, moving up.”
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ne of the regular features in the Park Labrea News showcases some of the interesting ads and photographs that have appeared in the newspaper over the years. A collection is featured here, illustrating how dramatically the times have changed.
Hairstyles for Cheap Meet the May Co. hairstyles in this ad from the December 8, 1949 issue of the Park Labrea News.
The ‘Moustachios’ of California politics represent L.A. Interests From page 23
plishments in public office have included his work on Measure R, and legislation protecting children and senior citizens. In his youth, the neighborhood was primarily populated by members of the Jewish community, and while they remain today, Feuer said there are now many more ethnic groups that call the neighborhood home. He said one of the best examples of that can be found at Pan Pacific Park, where he often helps with his daughter’s softball training. “At Pan Pacific Park, you see people of every background in Los Angeles coming together, and everyone gets along. I have never felt any tension there, I always felt a sense of belonging that really emphasizes what we need to be as a city,” Feuer said. “People of all backgrounds take their families there; their kids play in the playground together. There aren’t too many neighborhoods in the world, let alone L.A., that have so much to offer.” Waxman, Feuer and Yaroslavsky said they remain highly optimistic about the future, and added that the same cohesiveness that has enabled them to solve past problems will help them address new challenges as they come up. Being represented by legislators who are both friends and allies at the local, state and national level, as well as lawmakers who have the experience of living in the area for many years, is a major benefit for the people who live, work in and visit Los Angeles.
photo by Edwin Folven
State Assemblymember Mike Feuer, Congressman Henry Waxman and Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky share a laugh.
63 April 28, 2011
The Original Hope for Change in Local Politics Before posters of President Obama papered the city with the catchphrase “Hope,” actor and performer, Bob Hope, used his celebrity and memorbable name to endorse Proposition 6, in the Oct. 26, 1960 issue of the Park Labrea News. The new law would preserve land and recreation facilities to help maintain the high level of tourist traffic Los Angeles now considers the norm.
The Torch Passes on Wilshire In the Aug. 2, 1984 issue of the Park Labrea News, the Olympic Torch is hoisted high above runner, Chuck Richardson, as the flame is carried down Wilshire Boulevard a few days before Saturday’s kickoff of the 23rd Olympiad.
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Store Offered Thrifty Deals
The Staff is Always Hard at Work The staff of the Park Labrea News was introduced on the cover of the March 22, 1951 issue of the Park Labrea News, and included (clockwise from top left) photographer Auburn Graves, editor and publisher Lu Weare, society editor Terri Bowman, and advertising salesperson Marian Peltason.
Thrifty Drugstore at Wilshire and Fairfax had great deals on many items, including ones not usually associated with a drugstore — “piping hot” fish & chips for 39 cents.
Football and Fun on Fairfax Tom Bergin’s has been a staple on Fairfax Avenue for decades. In this ad from Sept. 7, 1950, football fans were encouraged to stop by the restaurant and tavern before L.A. Rams football games. Tom Bergin’s arranged for the tickets, and offered rides aboard special buses to the games.
Eatery Had Real Value Menu An All You Can Eat smorgasbord with dessert and drink was only $1.50 in October 1951 at the Hickory House on Wilshire Boulevard. An extra 50 cents got you a complete prime rib dinner, with an extra-thick cut of meat.
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A Stepping Stone to the White House Ronald Reagan was making his first foray into politics in 1966, and was pictured in a Nov. 3, 1966 ad running for California governor. He was joined on the ticket by Robert H. Finch. It turned out that the governorâ€™s mansion was just a stop on the way to the White House for Reagan, who was elected president in 1980. After serving as Lt. Governor, Finch was appointed as Secretary of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare under President Richard Nixon.
The Beginning of a Legacy An ad for John F. Kennedy ran on Oct. 27, 1960, marking the start of one of the 20th Centuryâ€™s most famous political dynasties.
Ferraro Makes a Run L.A. City Council President John Ferraro ran for the first time in this March 23, 1967 ad. He had been appointed to the council in 1966, and went on to be reelected nine times.
Greenway Arts Alliance believes in the power of the arts to inspire and stimulate. We are dedicated to nurturing students at Fairfax High School through art, education, and enterprise.
The Melrose Trading Post is held every Sunday, 9am-5pm on the campus of Fairfax High School.
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