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GETTING SCHOOLED By David Markland Taylor Tompkins may not be old enough to know it, but she’s a pioneer. It’s her first day as a first grader at Para Los Niños Charter Elementary School, where she’s only one of two Caucasians in a school predominately full of children from working-class Latino families. What makes this sixyear old’s entry unusual is that her parents moved from suburban Chicago to Downtown Los Angeles, deliberately, so their kids could be raised in an urban area not typically considered family-friendly. The Tompkins family was drawn to urban living while spending two years in Barcelona, Spain while Brian pursued

an MBA there. There was a sense of community that they never saw back home in the suburbs of Chicago. “Shop owners light up when they see you,” Brian says, counter to lifelong neighbors who’d they maybe only see over a fence or pulling into a garage. “There’s a loss of culture,” Aimee adds of the suburban lifestyle. Another Downtown resident, Michelle Bravo, commuted from Azusa for nearly 20 years before moving here a year ago with her son Julian, 13, and daughter Mia, 6. “Downtown was not a place you’d walk around after 5pm,” she said, adding that seeing the vibrant nightlife in the past few years had

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Leon’s Guide to Downtown DJs

LAPD Lawn Reopens





Connector Headed Underground?

Portofino Takes on 5th and Main


September 9, 2010



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Downtown’s Week in Pictures





Sunglasses worn by Best Coast’s Bethany Cosentino reflect the crowd at FYF Fest.

A hot dog cart sits alone in a sea of parking meters on an empty Fashion District street .

September 4, 2010

September 6, 2010

Cody McKenna gets serious air during the BMX Long Jump competition outside the Bicycle Film Festival. September 5, 2010

Ph oto by M ar k F ish e r




P h o to b y M i k e y Wa l ly


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Eric Richardson

News September 9, 2010



You Said . . .


Michael Shane

Commenters had plenty of opinions on transit projects when this story was posted on




Rich Alossi Mark Fisher Sommer Lawal Dawna Nolan Kathy Richardson Michael F. Robleto Pamela Rouse Jenni Simcoe Monk Turner • D IR E C TO R O F ADVE R TISIN G & MA R KETI NG

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This conceptual Metro system map shows the four new stations that would be built Downtown as part of the Regional Connector project.

C o u rte s y Me tr o

Metro Staff Recommends Underground Connector

By Eric Richardson A project designed to connect all but one of Metro’s light rail lines into a single system looks to be headed underground, but only if the transit agency can find $173 million. That’s the gap between currently identified funding sources and the $1.4 billion that just released environmental documents say it would cost to build the 1.9-mile Regional Connector between 7th/Metro and Little Tokyo. The project hit a major milestone on Thursday with the release of its Draft Environmental Impact Report, a massive document analyzing the benefits and impacts of five different build options. Metro staff recommend that the agency move forward with the fullyunderground build option, a choice only officially added back in February. That’s the choice that community members have been calling for since early project meetings two and a half years ago. New stations would be added at 5th and Flower, 2nd and Hope and

2nd and Broadway, while the Gold Line’s existing Little Tokyo / Arts District station would be replaced with a new station underneath 1st and Alameda. The document says that the Financial District station could be eliminated if new funding is not identified. According to the document, the underground connector would save transit users 20,400 hours of travel time annually by eliminating one to two transfers currently needed to get from the Blue and Gold Lines to points elsewhere on the system. Currently, all passengers on the Gold and Blue lines must transfer to the Red Line to get to points deeper into Downtown than Union Station or 7th / Metro Center. An additional transfer is required if the passenger’s final destination is on a different line. Those transfers increase congestion in those two key stations. With the Regional Connector in place, one less transfer would be required and that movement could take place at any one of the new

stations created by the project. A pair of stakeholder meetings will be held in the upcoming month, one on September 28th from 6:30 – 8pm at the Japanese American National Museum, and the other on October 4th from 11:30am - 1pm at the Police Administration Building’s Deaton Auditorium. After a 45-day comment period, Metro’s Board of Directors will vote on whether to take the staff recommendation and make the fullyunderground option its “locally preferred alternative.” Metro anticipates opening the link in 2019, but that timeline could be sped up if Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is able to convince the federal government to provide funding for his “30/10 Initiative,” which would compress 30 years of transit projects into just one decade. While the federal government has indicated its support for the effort, it has not yet committed funds.


While Downtown residents are excited about the upsides of a new transit project, the new tracks will require some serious construction. Work will involve “cut and cover” tunneling along Flower (orange) in the Financial District and the use of tunnel boring machines along 2nd Street (blue).

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C ou rt e sy Me tr o 5635

I pray they can get the additional funding. It seems such a waste to spend so much and build this system but not to it’s full potential if they eliminate the Financial District station. I have no doubt this station would be very busy. Tornadoes28 Excellent news! Congratulations to the Little Tokyo Community for pressuring the MTA to officially consider the all-underground option. Let’s hope the board of directors will agree with their staff in 45 days. Jim Shafer Who knows,.. it might even bring some bankers, lawyers, and accountants into a bit of culture: Disney Hall, Colburn, and the Broad Museum. It is much more important that this just gets built, all underground thank goodness. Whatever funds would be saved by not building this station could be used for the subway to the sea line - so that this “just gets built” too. Guest These connectors are so important along with adding of street cars. It would create less travel time and more efficiency in the metro system. John Apodaca

Everyday yday 4

September 9, 2010


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Downtown Schools Continues on Page 15

A one-car household, Aimee takes Taylor to school on the Metro bus system. With Ellie, Taylor’s four-year-old sister in tow, the trio make the commute to and from school from their home in the Historic Core to Para Los Niños Charter Elementary School in the Arts District.

turned her around. She wanted her kids to go to school somewhere close, but wanted to avoid them having to go through Skid Row to get there, and finally placed Mia at Evelyn Thurman Gratts Elementary, three blocks west of the 110 at 3rd and Lucas, and her son at John Leighty Middle School at Wilshire and Union. She says both of her children have excelled at their new Los Angeles Unified School District-managed schools. A recent transplant from Sherman Oaks, Lily Buckley, 5 1/2, will enter kindergarten at Solano Avenue Elementary after spending her formative years as a student of La Petite Academy adjacent to Union Station. Tired of the commute from Sherman Oaks, her parents Paul, a composer, and Leticia, a marketing director at the Music Center, decided to make the move Downtown where they already worked. The couple was determined that “there had to be good public schools” near their home at Packard Lofts. Leticia says they spent hours researching kindergarten programs, and after visiting a number first person, found that Solano, was on par, if not better, than local charter schools. The Tompkins, Bravo, and Buckley families may be indicative of a growing trend. Between 2006 and 2008 Downtown’s population boomed by over 10,000 new residents, a 38 percent increase largely comprised of single young adults adding to a cycle of revitalization unseen in the

area’s history. As art galleries, restaurants, and nightlife have flourished, the singles have become couples, and some, inevitably, have become parents. While the current number of children living downtown is unknown, a 2008 study by the Downtown Center Business Improvement District showed a general population of 39,537. Of this, roughly 6.5 percent had one or more children up to the age of five, and 6 percent with children aged 5-13 (another 13 percent didn’t have kids yet, but were planning to in the next few years). The same study shows that 73 percent of parents would like to send their kids to a school near where they live, but on first glance Downtown is limited on options. In the past five years the area has seen four new public high schools built to meet demand and reduce overcrowding, but LAUSD’s only elementary school in Downtown proper, 9th Street Elementary, closed last June for a three-year reconstruction. Students who lived nearby have been redirected to Betty Plasencia Elementary in Silverlake. Charter schools appear to be an all too popular option. Para Los Niños Charter Elementary has a waiting list of about 10 children per grade. Jardin de la Infancia, which only has 20 seats each for kindergarten and first grade, is also full. When 9th Street elementary reopens in 2013, the school will pair with Para Los Niños with LAUSD operating a 450-desk elementary school and PLN operating a 405-desk middle school.

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Schools Glossary Charter Schools Tuition free primary or secondary schools that are publicly funded but privately run. Admittance is open to anyone who applies, sometimes with preference to children within proximity to the school. “If there is excess demand for the number of seats available, the school must conduct a lottery to determine who will be enrolled.” Source: California Charter School Association Public Schools Public schools are funded by taxpayers. They provide basic education at the K-12 levels, also referred to as primary and secondary education. Students are assigned to a public school based on geographic borders.

Magnet Schools Public schools with specialized curriculum, such as classes for gifted students or for a particular trade or skill, or to fill a particular need. Magnet schools do not have the same geographic boundaries as public schools, but draw students from around a metropolitan area, thus, the ‘magnet’. Private schools Independent schools not administrated by state or local governments. Because they are supported through private funds (largely through student tuition) they can create their own selection requirements and teaching curriculum.


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September 9, 2010


Screenshot from Metro’s new app

Metro Releases iPhone App, but Consumers May Pass on First Version

Top right: A tent is installed on the lawn behind the Police Administration Building, part of set up for the “True Blue” gala (November 5, 2009). Middle: Grass is left matted down and rutted with tire tracks after the tent is removed nearly two weeks later (November 11, 2009). Bottom right: The lawn is again opened to the public, ten months after it was first closed for the gala (September 2, 2010).

By Eric Richardson Metro last week released a free application designed to guide iPhone users toward easier transit use, offering access to nearby bus and rail stops, trip planning and basic rider information. The program, freely available via the App Store, channels functionality available on Metro’s website into a more mobile package. That’s both a blessing and a curse. The LAMetro app, programmed for Metro by developer Usablenet, Police Foundation’s “True Blue” now-dried grass remained in place. suffers under the general lack of gala, hosted by Conan O’Brien, It took until July for insurance smarts shown by the transit agency’s then still host of NBC’s Tonight quarrels to be resolved to the point Trip Planner functionality, which Show. The event raised $900,000 where replacement work could get hasn’t seen any significant updates for Police equipment, training and underway. since its unveiling in early 2005. youth programs. The new lawn features a Bermuda At the time, the agency touted the Nearly two weeks later, the tents grass chosen to hold up to the park’s new system as a step forward from were removed to reveal matted, popularity with nearby residents the third-party software that it had brown grass rutted with tire tracks. and their dogs. Its ability to hold up previously licensed. Fast forward to The foundation was quick to to tents, though, remains to be seen. 2010, though, and its interface and admit responsibility, but as the functionality feels positively archaic. calendar turned into early 2010, the Try to use the planner to get

LAPD Lawn Reopens After Ten Months By Eric Richardson It may have a few brown spots from the recent heat wave, but the lawn outside the LAPD’s new headquarters was open and green last week for the first time in nearly ten months. Sod was installed in mid-July, but the space remained closed off for two-and-a-half months while the new grass was given time to take root.

The 2nd Street space opened to the public in September of 2009, part of a major landscaping effort around the LAPD’s new headquarters building across 1st Street from City Hall. The space was a concession to the Downtown community, which had fought to hold the city to earlier plans to use the site as a park. Just two months later the lawn was covered by a massive tent for the

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Food 6

September 9, 2010


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Dishes: Insalata di Spinachi Arugola e Pesto (left), fresh foccacia bread (center), Antipasta Italiano (right).

Portofino Opens at 5th and Main By Pamela Rouse When Diego Ortoli came to the United States some eight years ago from Naples, he had a dream of opening his own restaurant. That dream has come true a little quicker than he expected, and on one of Downtown’s most interesting corners. On Friday morning, Ortoli opened the doors to Portofino Cucina Italiana, which takes over the space briefly occupied by Cafe Bermuda at 5th and Main. As is often the case, nothing about opening the restaurant was easy. Ortoli, who had been working at Cafe Verona on Fairfax, happened upon the location on a Wednesday, and the owner encouraged him to come back the next night to see how “populated” the area was at night. It was only later that he found out the Art Walk night crowds didn’t

quite reflect a normal day at 5th and Main. The restaurant was also presented as being move-in ready, but it turned out that the length of time the restaurant had been closed and changes made inside required new inspections. During construction he also discovered some of the more seedy aspects of 5th and Main as

transients continued to occupy his patio and disturb the restaurant’s planters. Still, the experiences weren’t enough to sour Ortoli on the corner. “I have a great feeling about this place,” he says. “The place has grown on me.” Ortoli also credits Russell Brown and Brady Westwater of the Historic Downtown Business Improvement

I have a great feeling about this place,” he says. “The place has grown on me.” -Owner Diego Ortoli

P h o to S b y Pa me l a R o u s e ; LAYOUT b y E d Fu e n te s

District for helping him navigate the renovation and opening process. “They gave me a lot of psychological support,” he says. “Brady was the first one I met. I was going around the neighborhood to see if it was a good place to buy this place. He came and showed me the whole neighborhood.” “My biggest hope is that people will know I’m here,” Ortoli says. He knows he is fortunate and that there are many with the dream of ownership who have spent years in the restaurant industry never to work for themselves. Though he is not a chef, Ortoli has played a role in crafting the restaurant’s offerings. “The bread is my recipe,” he notes. “It took one year of work.” He taught himself to make bread

using the 1950s oven in his apartment, adjusting it again and again until he came out with a simple recipe. Ortoli says that it is important to let the chef create his own recipes, but to keep in mind the neighborhood. While the items on his menu have the feel of high-end dining, he wanted the prices to reflect the community. Offerings include a full assortment of salads, paninis, pastas, risottos, and appetizers, as well as a wide selection of fresh meat and seafood inspired entrees. The restaurant also has a breakfast/brunch menu that includes several “American breakfasts.” Everything is made fresh on site, including the bread that is served at the beginning of the meal: a toasted focaccia with tomato and olive oil. Desserts including a fruit torte, cheesecake, and tiramasu are made fresh in the Portofino kitchen. The tortes are baked in the morning and prepared right before serving. He says his staff loves to cook and they are so excited to be open and to be finally serving customers. Hours are still a work in progress, but expect the restaurant to be open by 9am during its soft opening, with closing times around 10pm daily. Breakfast will be served until noon, and later on Sundays. A grand opening and delivery are planned. Ortoli has a measured perspective on his new life as a restaurant owner. “I just want to give you my best,” he says. “If I succeed, maybe someone will say I’m lucky, but if I fail I can at least say I tried my best and I will not have any regrets.”

Portofino Cucina Italiana 464 S. Main 213-239-9019 DISCUSS ONLINE 5637


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September 9, 2010

P h o to b y Pa me l a R o u s e

Ph oto by Pam e la R ou se

‘Macarons’ Debut in Little Tokyo By Pamela Rouse It may not have been on the radar of most Downtowners, but for those who know their ‘macarons’ (or macaroons, for those more familiar with the Americanized spelling), the opening of Paulette in Little Tokyo is a big deal. The Beverly Hills-based French bakery, specializing in the vibrant-

developed a large following. She and award-winning Pastry Chef Chrisly colored Parisian macarons, was tophe Michalak have created their rumored to open Friday before trou- own versions of the ganache-filled ble with the phone lines postponed almond-based cookies. the grand opening one day. The soft, flavorful cookies are It didn’t really matter. After baked fresh in the Beverly Hills opening at 3pm on Saturday, the kitchen daily and come in fourteen shop sold out of its supply of gour- flavors, including: violet, rose, raspmet cookies in less than four hours. berry, milk chocolate hazelnuts, and Paulette Koumetz (the “Paulette” Earl Grey tea. for whom the shop is named) has While cookies are available for

Ph oto by R ic h A lossi

Rooftop Dining Plans for the Standard Oil By Rich Alossi If the owners of the Standard Oil Building have their way, two new restaurants would join the corner of Olympic Boulevard and Hope Street. The building, built in 1924, has long housed small professional offices, nonprofits and fashion tenants, including a FIDM design studio. According to Standard Oil Investment Group’s Steven Bohbot, nearly $3 million in improvements were undertaken for the project, which provides the infrastructure necessary for restaurant operators to take over and do a custom build-out. Currently, operators are being sought for a high-end supper club or steakhouse in the basement of the building as well as a themed rooftop dining and lounge space. A lengthy construction process started in 2007 after the building received some early interest from Beverly Hills restaurant Crustacean. The restaurant group bowed out in the midst of the recession. The ninth floor, which previously housed

dusty mechanical equipment and not much else, is now brightly lit and home to several executive offices and modern restrooms. Stairs lead to the 9,000-square-foot rooftop space, which provides unencumbered views of the Staples Center, the Financial District skyline and the building’s Italianate rooftop elevator housing. Bohbot explains that a splitlevel restaurant/lounge could make the most of those views by keeping the dining area on the rooftop with the kitchen below. The clock is ticking on the building’s hunt to find tenants. The entitlements, obtained in early August, need to be put to use within a year or will have to be extended, potentially adding to the time it would take a restaurant to open. Downtowners looking to draw comparisons to the Standard Hotel rooftop lounge may have to wait a while before sipping those mojitos. MORE PHOTOS ONLINE 5625


purchase individually, they are also sold in gift boxes of 2, 4, 6, 12 and 24. Paulette also has coffees, teas (served hot or cold) and various flavored boba teas and slushes. Paulette’s Little Tokyo shop, located inside the Little Tokyo Galleria at 3rd and Alameda, is open seven days a week. That should make downtown fans very happy.

Paulette Little Tokyo Galleria 333 S. Alameda 213.621.4457 HOURS: Mon through Saturday: 10am - 7:30pm Sunday: 1pm - 6:30pm DISCUSS ONLINE 5641

Art Walk 8


September 9, 2010

Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk Noon to 9pm Downtown Los Angeles

Two galleries are featuring artists who began art careers in European countries during strict political regimes; Welcome to the Bloc Party. Here are some of the other shows that caught our eye. For a complete list of galleries. museums, and happenings, official maps will be available at the Art Walk Lounge nesting in the lobby of the Los Angeles Theater Center. They can also be downloaded at

Online at

B Rapture of the Tiny: A Small Art Show Through Sep 18 Wed-Sat Noon to 5pm Bert Green Fine Art 102 W. 5th

Bert Green Fine Art offers a wide assortment of small art set with affordable pricing. Open during Art Walk from noon to 6pm.

C The Bigger Picture. ‘a big ART group show’ Through Sep 18, Noon to 5pm Edgar Varela Fine Arts, 105 W. 5th

A Urban Impressionism: A Miguel Paredes Retrospective Sep 08 - Sep 26 Tues to Thurs Noon-7pm Fri to Sat Noon-8pm Sun Noon-6pm Crewest 110 Winston

Miami-based pop, multimedia artist and sculptor Miguel Paredes is the subject of “Urban Impressionism: A Miguel Paredes Retrospective.” Born in New York and of Latin American descent, Paredes’ graffiti has “the skill and perceptiveness of a true exceptional artist.” Paredes is also influ-

The Vault Art Walk Lounge Thur Sep 09 6 to 9pm Los Angeles Theatre Center 514 S. Spring

The Los Angeles Theater Center’s lobby acts as the Art Walk Lounge from 6 to 9pm, offering gallery goers a place to pick up an Art Walk map. Meanwhile, LATC’s Theater 4 offers “The Vault” at 8pm. Later in the evening, the official Art Walk after party is held one block south at Exchange L.A. (618 S. Spring) at 9:30pm.

enced by pop artists like Andy Warhol and Keith Haring. The retrospective at Crewest Gallery exhibits select pieces and sculptures from Paredes.

Large site-specific works, featuring painting, sculpture, video, photography, and performances by artists including Kim Abeles, Britt Ehringer, Terrell Moore, Benjamin Pezzillo, Max Presneill, Rick Robinson and Jen Wolf. Open during Art Walk from noon to 6pm.

D Juried Exhibition

Daniel Aksten’s ‘Composite’ (GRB) is on display at CB1 Gallery.

E Material Sep 09 - Oct 10 Wed Sat Sun Noon to 6pm Thurs Fri Noon to 7:30pm CB1 Gallery 207 W. 5th

This solo show featuring the work of Los Angeles artist Daniel Aksten is part of an “ongoing series of highly finished grid paintings while adding an additional body of work focusing on vertical Juried exhibition with stripes.” With mathematiJorge Albertella, William Hayner, Eunju Jang, Barba- cal structure, chance, and ra Kolo, Linda Kunik, Jung ji craft, CB1 suggests the Lee, Cecilia Rabaudi, Erynn paintings will “challenge Richardson, Debra Sokolow, the viewer to re-examine how much one thinks they Valter Varderesian, Mark can actually see” and work Verrillo, and Hojin Yun. as a reminder that “everyPaul Chatem’s solo show opens at thing we see is surrounded Dialect during Art Walk. by the expanding and shrinking flesh visage of G our own countenance.” river, rock, bones Sep 09 - Oct 07 Mon - Fri 8am to 4pm Downtown Art Center Gallery 828 S. Main

Top: Miguel Pardes’ work at Crewest. Below: Cheech Marin and MAN ONE at a private viewing for last months “Friends with Knives.” Photos: Crewest

F 2010 Digital Art L.A. Sep 09 - Oct 02 Wed - Sat Noon - 5pm Los Angeles Center for Digital Art 107 W. 5th

Los Angeles Digital Art has a juried exhibition during this month’s Art Walk. The works are gathered from an international pool of artists working in digital media, and were selected by Peter Frank of the Riverside Art Museum.

Runs through Oct 9 Art Walk night 5 - 11pm Dialect 215 W. 6th Suite 111

“river, rock, bones” is a solo show for Paul Chatem, an artist who grew up in nearby La Crescenta. It is a city that, as he states, pushed aside nature, its own history and the impoverished for “golf courses and mini-malls.” Chatem dug into those memories to create “surreal, often nightmarish, narrative paintings.”


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September 9, 2010


2nd st





food truck court

p h o to b y e d f u e n te s

H Memories From My Youth in Communist Romania

4th st

Aug 12 - Oct 07; Gallery open Mon-Fri 9am 6pm Cotrutza Fine Art 446 S. Main /


5th st


A h

Claudia Cotrutza French’s gallery, next to The Regent, is perfect for works that talk about her previous world. Sometimes painting in reds, blues, and yellows (colors that happen to be the same as the Romanian flag), her personal experience is her subject as she looks back at living and working under the rule of Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. She has extended her show to Oct 7.



BC p h o to by e d fu e n te s


6th st

J I 7th st


Luka Krstch



Sep 09 - Oct 01

Gloria Delson Contemporary Art

215 W. 6th #115 Entrance on Spring

Abstract artists Luka Krstch and Sergei Tivetsky.

8th st


K 9th st

Brooke Shaden’s photograph series Ballet Vacate is on display at ARTY (634 S. Main). The group show also includes photography byTravis Janke.

J ALIVE Sep 09 - Oct 01 Tues-Fri 1pm to 8pm Sat 11am to 7pm Immortal Gallery 215 W. 6th #116 Entrance on Spring

Angel Acordagoitia has quietly showcased other Latino artists in his small gallery off Spring. This month he takes over the room for a solo show he calls ALIVE that has him working with light and darkness. The work, he says, is inspired by the 19th century Mexican artist Jose Guadalupe Posada and by French Electronic musical group Daft Punk.

Nightlife yda 10


September 9, 2010

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Looking Out for Downtown’s DJs Ghettoblaster at Bar 107 Every Thursday (except the night of Art Walk), 10pm - 2am FREE 107 W. 4th Gettoblaster can only be described as an eclectic mix of rock, punk, ska, soul, indie, funk, and old school all played by DJs using strictly vinyl. On this night localfavorite Bar 107 is one of the best places to hear great music in a more casual environment.

Amanda Leon is a nighthawk for nightlife and has become a local online celebrity as her followers tag along with her journey through Downtown, exploring clubs to gather intelligence for her website DTLA Tonight. Yet, it’s not all about the cocktail, says Leon: “Downtown nightlife isn’t only about drinking and dining, there are plenty of places to catch DJs playing great music as well.” “Far from simply bars looking to set a mood, there are many events in Downtown that are primarily about listening to great music, and dancing.” Leon adds. Of course, as a recent grad from CSULA with a degree in sociology, this is all extra research in case she decides to attend grad school. So where are some of her top Downtown picks for an evening beyond a happy hour? She shares a few: Jazz Tonic at Broadway Bar Every Wednesday 9pm FREE 830 S. Broadway

Culture Clash at Mountain Bar Every Friday, 9pm - 2am FREE 473 Gin Ling Way

Newly formed, this “all things jazz” night features a rotating line up of guest DJs playing jazzy hip hop, jazzy house, jazzy soul and sometimes just plain old jazz. The occasional spoken word poet and live musician playing along with the music only adds to the atmosphere, which includes vibrant visuals projected on the walls.

Always packed with people dancing, Culture Clash is first and foremost a reggae nightclub featuring plenty of roots, dub, dancehall and rock classic hits. The action takes place downstairs, with an added mix of classic hip hop and breaks in the newly remodeled upstairs.

Punky Reggae Party at La Cita Every Friday 9pm - 2am FREE before 10:30 $5 after 10:30 336 S. Hill Going strong for nearly four years, Punky Reggae Party features an all-vinyl night of punk, post–punk, reggae and dancehall with DJs from The Echo’s Dub Club and Part Time Punks.

Soul Sessions at Grand Star Jazz Club 2nd and 4th Fridays 9pm to 2am $5 before 10:30 $10 after 10:30a 943 N. Boadway Soul Sessions serves up a vibrant mix of hip hop, funky soul, Latin beats and turntablists that keeps people dancing all night long. Break dancing circles are a frequent sighting upstairs, while downstairs stays busy with a live band and lounge. DISCUSS ONLINE

For the 5th year, Grey Goose vodka was the official spirit sponsor of the Primetime Emmy Awards giving mixologists a chance to show their skills at the Governors Ball and Creative

Arts Award Ball, both held at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The specialty cocktail, simply named The Emmy, was created by Grey Goose’s Nick Mautone.

2 Parts Grey Goose L’ Orange flavored vodka

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all ingredients. Shake well until the outside of the shaker is frosted and beaded with sweat. Strain into martini cocktail glass and garnish with peach slice.

1 part peach brandy 1 part fresh lime juice 2 dashes peach bitters 1/2 part simple syrup 1 peach slice 5642

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Fashion’s Night Out Fri Sep 10 6 - 10pm

Launched in New York City in 2009, Fashion’s Night Out is an effort to celebrate and support the fashion and retail industries. The City of Los Angeles got on-board for 2010, putting together a suite of events centered around the Beverly Center. In a kickoff event earlier this month, the Mayor’s office tout-

A – Cynthia Rowley’s Fashion Truck

ed the industry’s $5.7 billion yearly contribution to the Los Angeles economy. Fashion has always been big business for Downtown, with manufacturing and showrooms occupying the area now known as the Fashion District for nearly a century. Lately, though, Downtown has also become a home for young

Parking itself on Main Street outside the Main Mercantile building (620 S. Main) will be a traveling boutique from designer Cynthia Rowley. The shop on wheels features Rowley’s full line of clothing, accessories, books and gifts. Dressing rooms are included in the converted shipping truck, so no worries about being unable to try on that potentially great find.

1 1-Man’s Trash 111 W. 7th #106 (store on Main)

5 Bliss 204 W. 6th 6 Bolt Barbers 460 S. Spring 7 Crack Gallery 204 W. 6th 8 Dialect 215 W. 6th 9 Elmer Ave. 120 W. 4th 10 Flea 548 S. Spring #112 (store on 6th) 11 Fremont 111 W. 7th #R1


13 Gather 630 S. Main 14 KAPSOUL 548 S. Spring #110 (store on 6th) 15 Local Tourist 450 S. Main 16 martinMARTIN 713 S. Los Angeles 17 Pussy & Pooch 564 S. Main 18 SK8Cafe 111 W. 7th 19 Skin.Graft 125 W. 4th #102


19 4 4TH

9 20





23 8 6TH

5 7

10 3


17 2


A 1

20 Stelladottir 430 S. Main 21 SUB(URBAN) 101 W. 5th


4 Blends 125 W. 4th

Twenty vintage retailers and private dealers will be bringing their wares to the Cooper Design Center (860 S. Los Angeles) for the pop-up vintage marketplace. Festivities run from 6 to 10pm on Friday, and then from 10am to 5pm on Saturday. $10 admission.

12 Gas’D Station 600 S. Spring

11 18


16 22


22 The Cooper Store 721 S. Los Angeles 23 ZLB 215 W. 6th #108




S. Los Angeles and the Bliss Boutique at 204 W. 6th. Downtown may not yet have the retail reputation of a Melrose Avenue or an Abbot Kinney, but the neighborhood has quietly accumulated quite the collection of oneof-a-kind offerings. That’s something worth supporting all year long.

B – A Current Affair


3 Apliiq 548 S. Spring #114 (store on 6th)

fashion retailers. On Friday, two dozen stores will be open in the Historic Core and Fashion District, offering a wide variety of styles and accessories. Several spaces will be having their soft-openings during the event, including Katie Kay’s GATHER at 639 S. Main, a new flagship showroom and retail store for martinMARTIN at 713


2 1-Man’s Trash Shoes 614 S. Main

September 9, 2010


Online at


Calendar 12


September 9, 2010

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‘Destricted’ Thur Sep 9 3pm DFFLA / LACDA Cinema Lounge 541 S Spring Loft 214

With DFFLA, The Los Angeles Center for Digital Art will have a one-day-only screening of “Destricted” (2006), a compilation of steamy short films by art filmmakers.

tary series. The documentary follows the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ creative process from writing a song to making a music video to promote it. Film producer Rocky Ziegler and director David Hausen will hold a Q&A after the screening.


The David Ashkenazy Trio Thu Sep 9 9pm Blue Whale 123 Astronaut E S Onizuka St Suite 301

2010 World Trade Center 9/11 Commemorative Ceremony Fri Sep 10

Anthony Kiedis with Director David Hausen

David Ashkenazy on drums, Larry Koonse on guitar and Dan Lutz on bass. $10 cover.

9 to 10:30am Frank Hotchkin Memorial Training Center 1700 Stadium Way


The Red Hot Chili Peppers: Untitled Documentary

Los Angeles Fire Department’s 9/11 Commemorative Ceremony will be held Friday, September 10, just outside of Downtown Los Angeles. “The men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department ask you to stand with them in memory of the lives lost on September 11, 2001, at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and on airline flights 11, 77, 93, and 175” is the simple message from LAFD.

Judith Ivey as Amanda Wingfield in “The Glass Menagerie” Photo by Craig Schwartz.


The Glass Menagerie Through Oct 17 Wed-Fri 8pm Sat 2:30pm and 8pm Sun 1pm and 6:30pm Mark Taper Forum 135 N. Grand

The Gordon Edelsteindirected production of Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie” first opened in May 2009 at the Long Wharf Theater Company in New Haven. In the spring it ran off-Broadway and was extended for the Roundabout Theater Company. The production is acclaimed for returning to the text’s dark humor and reducing the sentimentality and over-the-top drama. Many from that acclaimed cast are in the current five-week visit to the Mark Taper Forum, which, after a week of previews, begins September 12. Judith Ivey as the iconic Amanda Wingfield; Patch Darragh as Tom; Keira Keeley as Laura; and Ben McKenzie as Jim O’Connor, the Gentleman Caller.

Thu Sep 9 7:30pm The Grammy Museum

A special screening of “The Red Hot Chili Peppers: Untitled Documentary” for Downtown Film Festival’s music documenTHEATER

Leap Of Faith Sep 11 through Oct 24 Ahmanson Theater 135 N. Grand ARENA SHOW

Walking With Dinosaurs Sep 9 through Sep 11 Staples Center 1111 S. Figueroa

Based on the BBC program of the same name, Walking With Dinosaurs brings a life size herd of T Rex, Stegosaurus, Plateosaurus and Utahraptor to Staples Center for a blend of animatronics, motion contro– complete with lighting, sound effects, and original music.

Four-time Tony nominee Raúl Esparza and Golden Globe Award nominee Brooke Shields are currently rehearsing for Leap of Faith, a new musical about a flim-flam faith healer who is stranded in a small drought-stricken Kansas town. It is based on the 1992 film that starred Steve Martin as Reverend Jonas Nightengale and Debra Winger as Marva, the single mom who questions him. Directed and choreographed by Rob Ashford,


Issac Delgado; A Tribute to Nat King Cole Thu Sep 9 8pm Conga Room L.A. Live 800 W. Olympic

Cuban crooner Issac Delgado released L-O-V-E as a tribute album to Nat King the musical will feature a country-music and gospel inspired score by Alan Menken. The book is by Janus Cercone with Glenn Slater. The debut of Leap of Faith opens the 2010-2011 season for the Ahmanson Theater. Previews will begin Sep. 11, open Oct. 3 and run through Oct. 24.

Raúl Esparza and CTG Artistic Director Michael Ritchie in rehearsal for the world premiere of “Leap Of Faith.” Photo by Craig Schwartz.


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Cole. With Spanish renditions of Cole’s library–in collaboration with Nat King Cole’s brother Freddy Cole–neither Cole’s or Delgado’s style is lost in translation.



Dance Downtown: Samba

Spirit Vine

Fri Sep 10 6:30pm

Five Star Bar / 267 S. Main



Just off Turner Thu Sep 09 10pm Redwood Bar and Grill 316 W. 2nd

Melody-crafted music with Just off Turner and Micheal Hays. The night includes Loch & Key, a duet made up of American Music Club guitarist Sean Hoffman and artist Leyla Akdogan.

Music Center Plaza 135 N. Grand

The public is invited to join in the “infectious beats of live Samba music and feel the irresistible rhythms of Brazil.” No previous experience in Samba dancing is needed, nor is a partner necessary. The Music Center’s Dance Downtown series always begins with complimentary lessons for beginners at 6:30pm, and dances are held throughout the evening.


The Enough Moment Fri Sep 10 7pm Miguel Contreras Learning Complex / 322 S. Lucas COMMUNITY

2010 Latino Heritage Month Opening Ceremonies Fri Sep 10 10am City Hall South Lawn, 200 N. Spring Free

The City of LA’s Latino Heritage Month begins by honoring Placido Domingo, ASCO (the collective artists that includes Downtown’s Gronk) and actor Tony Plana (Zoot Suit, Ugly Betty) at City Hall. The ceremony on the South Lawn will include performances by Grammy Award winners Mariachi Divas and Mario Reyes of the Gipsy Kings. The morning also includes the Argentina Tango Dancers, art of flower making by Ofelia Esparza, and live painting by MAN ONE. You can also expect coffee and pan dulce to be served.

The Enough Moment is a community conversation with actor Don Cheadle and Human Rights activist John Prendergast to discuss world citizens fighting genocide, rape, and child soldierdom in Africa. Complimentary copies of the new book “The Enough Moment” will be given to the first 200 people attending. RSVPs are required, and while registration will be closed Wednesday, September 8, you can still call 213-2022811, extension 23, to try and reserve a seat.


Fri Sep 10 8pm

Pool hall with soccer on TV by day, music club by night, Five Star Bar will have Spirit Vine with Robotanists, Wet & Reckless, and Black Flamingo.


Captain Ahab Fri Sep 10 9pm The Smell / 247 S. Main

Captain Ahab; Wet Paint DMM; Totally Radd!! ; plus snowsuit*.


Margaret Chula and Cathy Erickson Sat Sep 11 2pm Japanese American National Museum 360 E. 1st


Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles Through Sep 12 Deaton Civic Auditorium 1st and Main Downtown Independent 251 S. Main The Medallion 4th and Main The Grammy Museum 800 W. Olympic / L.A. Live The 2010 Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles (DFFLA) began Sept. 8 with “American: The Bill Hicks Story,” opening a five day slate of indie films screening across Downtown. The main venue for DFFLA programming is the auditorium of LAPD’s new Police Administration Building, a 400-seat facility officially known as Ronald F. Deaton Civic Auditorium. Screenings are also being held at The Downtown Independent Theater, the Medallion loft complex, the Grammy Museum, and the


Downtown Art Walk. During Downtown Art Walk, the Spring Arcade building’s walk-through will again be a concert stage, this time for Twilight Sleep and Kissing Cousins, an after party for the screening of the Nathan Christ documentary on Austin’s music scene, “Echotone.” Earlier in the day, a loft is the hideaway for a steamy screening of “Destricted” presented by DFFLA and LACDA. DFFLA focuses on Latino filmmakers on Friday with American-Latino Shorts Program and a film with East LA’s Felipe Esparza, who is in town with NBC’s Last Comic Standing tour. On Saturday, The Medallion does another take as host of food trucks with Taco Cinema. DFFLA’s Centerpiece Gala screening is a world premiere of “Everything Happens Before You Die” at the Civic Center Auditorium. For complete screening times and tickets, go to Free

Joining poetry and quilts, Haiku poet Margaret Chula and fiber artist Cathy Erickson’s seven-year collaboration talks about the experience of life in Japanese American World War II internment camps. The two artists will also talk about their inspirations, including interviews with Japanese Americans, the collections of photographers Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams, autobiographies by internees and personal pilgrimages to the camps.


L.A. Flamenco Jazz Quartet Fri Sep 10 8pm First & Hope Supper Club 710 W. 1st

The L.A. Flamenco Jazz Quartet, with Dan Sistos on guitar, in a cabaret performance that welcomes the Downtown Los Angeles Film Festival.


Devil’s Night Drive-In Sat Sep 11 7:30pm 240 W. 4th

Fri Sep 10 7pm

Parking Lot, 2nd Level

Cafe Metropol / 923 E. 3rd

“Raiders of the Lost Ark” is the evening’s feature for the family-friendly urban drive-in.

Felipe Esparza COMEDY

Last Comic Standing Sat Sep 11 8pm


Tibetan Landscape

Mayu Wakisaka

Alternative pop jazz from singer-songwriter Mayu Wakisaka.

September 9, 2010

Sat Sep 11 7pm Bamboo Lane Gallery 410 Bamboo Lane

Opening reception for “Tibetan Landscapes — A Philosopher, Poet and Artist’s Spiritual Journey to Tibet,” featuring more than 20 paintings by Zhonggui Shi.

Club Nokia L.A. Live 800 W. Olympic

An evening of stand-up comedy that features the winner and four finalists from NBC’s “Last Comic Standing.” East L.A.’s Felipe Esparza won the 7th season competition, and the homeboy headlines a bill with Roy Wood Jr., Tommy Johnagin, Myq Kaplan, and Mike DeStefano.



September 9, 2010

Guillermo Kahlo Photography Exhibition Sep 07 - Oct 08 Mon-Fri 10am to 5pm City Hall Bridge Gallery 201 N Main, Third Floor

Photo by Guillermo Kahlo courtesy of UNAMonos Comunicándonos

In 1910, Guillermo Kahlo was invited by then President Porfirio Díaz to be the official photographer during Mexico’s Centennial celebrations. That made Kahlo, the father of the beloved Frida Kahlo, the first official photographer of Mexico’s cultural heritage. Kahlo’s photos first

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appeared in a series of publications produced by Díaz and since then the detailed collection of Mexican architecture has become a national treasure. The exhibition of Guillermo Kahlo’s legacy, presented by Mexico D.F. Sister Cities Committee, UNAM, and the City of Los Angeles, coincides with Mexico’s 2010 Bicentennial Celebrations. Off the art walk path, the gallery is located inside the pedestrian bridge connecting City Hall and City Hall East. Free.


An Evening with Chris Daughtry Wed Sep 14 7pm The Grammy Museum 800 W. Olympic

2005 American Idol finalist, Chris Daughtry, talks about his band, the Grammynominated Daughtry, and life on the road.


Los Temerarios Wed Sep 15 10:30pm Nokia Theatre L.A. Live 777 Chick Hearn Ct.





Trey Songz with Monica and Dondria

Bob Sheppard Trio Sat Sep 11 9pm

Fay Wolf and Rachael Cantu

Sep 11 10:30pm

Blue Whale

Sun Sep 12 7pm

Dunes, Stephanie, M. Women

Club Nokia L.A. Live

123 Astronaut E S Onizuka

First & Hope / 710 W. 1st

800 W. Olympic

Suite 301

With September 8 sold out, Trey Songz with Monica and Dondria add an extra night of inspirational and street smart R&B.

Sax and improvisational jazz from Bob Sheppard and his trio. $12 cover.

Indie-folk chanteuses singer songwriters Fay Wolf and Rachael Cantu.


Sara Radle Band



Mexico’s Bicentennial has AEG and Univision 34 holding their own “El Grito” ceremony at LA Live’s Nokia Plaza. It is a pre-show for Los Temerarios, the romantic band of brothers and cousins performing at Nokia Theatre. The outdoor ceremonies start at 7pm. Los Temerarios are set to hit the stage at 10:30pm.

Black Elephant

Wherever There’s a Fight


Sat Sep 11 9pm The Smell / 247 S. Main

Sat Sep 04 9:30pm

Casey’s Irish Pub

Indie punk with Black Elephant; Rare Grooves; plus The Lovely Bad Things.

613 S. Grand

Pop-folk songstress Sara Radle’s second night of a month-long Saturday night residency at Casey’s is also a release party for her new CD: FOUR. Oh Darling opens, then Sara Radle (tonight featuring The Damselles) hits the stage. No cover.


Paul Weitz Sun Sep 12 9pm Blue Whale 123 Astronaut E S Onizuka Suite 301

Bossa nova jazz.



Kevin Kanner Band

The Flash Express

Sat Sep 11 8pm

Sat Sep 11 10pm

Cafe Metropol

Redwood Bar and Grill

923 E. 3rd

316 W. 2nd

Jazz, led by drumming, with the Kevin Kanner Band.

A 10 year reunion show for rockers The Flash Express.

Sun Sep 12 9pm The Smell / 247 S. Main

Psychedelic-pop from Dunes, Stephanie, and M. Women.

Sun Sep 12 2pm

Mysterious Skin

Japanese American

Wed Sep 15 7pm

National Museum 360 E. 1st Free

Authors Elaine Elinson and Stan Yogi discuss the Patriot Act, civil liberties, and “Wherever There’s a Fight,” their book that documents the changes in equality in California. Elison, communications director of the ACLU of Northern California, and Yogi, who has overseen program development for the ACLU of Northern California, will bring a special focus to the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans. “Join the authors for a virtual tour of significant sites in Southern California’s civil rights history,” says JANM.

East West Players MUSIC

120 Judge John Aiso

Vesuvia Sonic

Sun Sep 12 10pm

Admission price for opening night of “Mysterious 316 W. 2nd Skin” includes a pre-show hosted bar and post-show Rock-soul psychedelia reception. From East West Vesuvia Sonic; alt-indie Players: “This searing The Pastilles; no nonsense drama follows the story of stiletto rock from Black a boy who believes he was Beverly Heels. once abducted by aliens. All roads lead back to a childhood classmate, now a MUSIC hustler, who holds the key Phil Alvin and Friends to the terrifying and heartMon Sep 13 8pm breaking truth.” EWP’s Redwood Bar and Grill production of “Mysterious 316 W. 2nd Skin” is written by Prince The Blasters co-founder Gomolvilas, based on the Phil Alvin returns to the novel by Scott Heim, and pirate den and brings some directed by Tim Dang. roots-rock friends. Runs through Oct 10. Redwood Bar and Grill

art, music, comedy, theater, community, block party, talk, Send your event to family, dance, sports, film


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Transit Apps for L.A.


Downtown School Options

Continued from Page 5

around Downtown, and you’re likely to get buried in a sea of similar options that lack sorting or differentiation. A search for directions to City Hall from blogdowntown’s current quarters at Pico and Hill produces 31 options, all shown quite optimistically as taking less than 15 minutes. The iPhone version doesn’t do much to improve matters. It selects one trip instead of presenting a list of options, but does so in a manner that is unlikely to make sense for Downtowners. For that trip from Pico and Hill to City Hall, the LAMetro app would have us walk a half mile to Olive and Olympic to catch Foothill Transit’s Silver Streak, paying $2.75 for the seven minute bus ride. A smarter rider would walk just a block to 12th and Hill, catching the DASH D for only $0.35. The app also misses the chance to allow the user to use his or her current location for the trip’s starting point, and doesn’t offer any saved state information if the rider happens to exit the trip midway. The extensive use of Metro’s website for data also means that a constant Internet connection is required, a downer for those who would wish to use the app in subway tunnels or

September 9, 2010

Continued from Page 4

on an iPod touch. Metro and Usablenet tout the app as “Build 1.0,” which does leave the door open for improvements, but Downtown transit riders might want to load up a few handy tools in the interim. MetrO, by Patrice Bernard & Frank Van Caenegem, is also available as a free App Store download. The application can be loaded up with data for hundreds of cities worldwide and offers locallycomputed routing information that doesn’t require the use of a network connection. The iPhone’s GPS can be used to compute a starting or ending point and the Los Angeles data offers a useful database of points of interest and nearby transit stops. While it isn’t an app, the mobile version of offers realtime information for DASH riders on the go. The site requires a general understanding of which of the system’s five Downtown lines go where, but then offers live arrival time information for each stop. Developed by Syncromatics, the company contracted to provide the GPS systems in DASH buses, the system also offers the ability to get arrival information by telephone (call 213-785-3858) or text message.

Left: MetrO is a free app for the iPhone that offers transit information for cities around the world. Right: The mobile version of offers realtime information on DASH arrivals.

On Tuesday, Para Los Niños opened the PLNGratts Primary Center, with 360 spots for kindergarten and first graders at 6th and Lucas. Currently there are 20 spots still available. Married architects Apurva Pande and Chinmaya Misra found a developmental preschool in Hope Street Friends for their daughter Anvaya, 3. Intended for children of employees of a nearby law office and investment firm, Hope Steet had several openings to outside students. As the couple look forward to the future, they plan to find an elementary school downtown for their daughter partly because, “Downtown has a sense of community lagging on the Westside,” says Chinmaya. City West residents Colleen O’Brien and Noah Butler are keeping their options open for the future for their three-year old daughter Roz. She also attends Hope Street Friends one to two days a week where Noah, a stay-at-home dad and actor volunteers. “When Roz is ready for school, we’ll make the decision between public and private based on where she’ll get the best education,” Noah says. The couple would like to see Roz attend a public school if possible so that she can be exposed to the various cultures and languages that make up the tapestry of downtown’s population. “I am actually hopeful that she is around a lot of kids from different cultures so she can pick up a second language organically, but I also want to make sure that she is getting the teachers’ attention that kids need in elementary school. So in two years, we’ll see if the public school budget crisis has been resolved, the competency rate of the teachers, and if the class sizes are small enough for her to get a good education,” adds Noah. Jardin de la Infancia, a charter school founded

in 2004 by Alice Callaghan, teaches kindergarten and first grade classes out of the Los Familias Del Pueblo community center on 7th and Wall Street. According to Callaghan, an outspoken critic of the LAUSD system, almost all of the students graduating second grade go on to attend Brentwood Science Magnet, which buses kids to and from the school throughout Los Angeles. Joaquin Cornejo, a finance executive at Lionsgate, commutes with his two-and-a-half-year old to Santa Monica, where Evergreen Community School serves as an in-house daycare with priority admissions for employees of 2600 and 2700 Colorado (including MTV Networks). He’s already researching private schools for his child, and says a public school education is out of the question because he believes the quality of public school is based on funding. “The budget of the LAUSD would determine his education...” While some parents debate the quality of elementary education available Downtown, one thing is for sure: Parents would like to see more option available in the near future. “This is the next issue in Downtown’s evolution,” says Carol Schatz, Executive Director of the Central City Association and President of the Downtown Center Business Improvement District. She says two years ago her organization was talking with a couple of “fairly tony” private schools about building a Downtown campus, “when the recession hit. We’re still plugging away at it.” She adds, “We’ve attracted young families, we want to keep them here.”


September 9, 2010


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blogdowntown Weekly — September 9, 2010  
blogdowntown Weekly — September 9, 2010  

Issue 1.6 of blogdowntown Weekly takes a look at Downtown's school scene and parents who are finding solutions for their kids.