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T h e H T N .c o m Photos by Glenn Marzano.


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A vintage 1953 fire truck makes its way down Loyola Boulevard during last year’s Fourth of July Parade.

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

This Month Brings You A look inside your HTN Wagner family named Stars of the Neighborhood 06 Farmers’ Market makes changes for 25th anniversary 08 19th Annual Fourth of July Parade Program 09

HOMETOWN STAFF/CONTRIBUTORS Stephanie Davis, Publisher, Editor Jeff Blair, Contributing Writer Fay Craton, Contributing Writer

Rebecca Hill, Secret Recipes of the Inn Kirby Israelson, Graphic Design

Advertisers’ Directory

Airport Marina Counseling AYSO Region 7 California Yacht Club Cantalini’s Salerno Beach Decron Properties Drollinger Properties 16, Five Minute Car Wash Food Pantry, LAX HHLA Inn at Playa del Rey Jane St. John Kevin and Kaz Los Angeles World Airports LAX Coastal on Parade Loyola Marymount Marina del Rey Hospital Melody Bar & Grill Music West Neighborhood Council Playa Venice Sunrise Rotary

30 26 16 18 15 24 33 08 23 14 35 02 11 09 07 36 34 22 06 18

Playa Vista/Brookfield 24 Regatta Capital Group 08 RPM Mortgage 08 Silicon Beach Parents Group 27 SoCalGas 19 SoCal Sports and Fitness 30 St. Anastasia School 33 St. Mark’s Catholic School 22 Stephanie Younger Group 25 Vergari & Napolitano 20 Visitation School 17 Westchester Arts & Music Block Party 21 Westchester Elks Lodge 31 Westchester Farmers’ Market 29 Westchester Lutheran School 03, 04, 13, 26 Westchester Rotary 20 Westchester Town Center BID 03 Westside Pacific Village 04 Zacha Homes 28

About The HomeTown News (HTN)

The HomeTown News is a monthly community newspaper dedicated to providing information about the people, events and happenings of Westchester, Playa del Rey, Marina del Rey and Playa Vista. Look for the HomeTown News the first Thursday of the month at your home or at one of our drop-off locations.

Connect with the HTN:

Mailing Address: 8939 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Ste. 110 #745 Westchester, CA 90045 • Email: • Website: • Facebook: The deadline for submissions is the 22nd of each month.

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

July 2018 • Page 3

Annual Fourth of July Parade pays tribute to “Cities Across America” and community

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Photo by Glenn Marzano.

One of the best things about Westchester is its small town community feel and almost nothing exemplifies this better than the community’s annual Fourth of July Parade. A little slice of Americana, for the last nineteen years the LAX Coastal Chamber has organized the parade, which welcomes thousands of local and international spectators who flock to Loyola Blvd. to celebrate our nation’s birthday. “Even though we’ve put on this parade for almost two decades, we’re still blown away by how many people come out to celebrate with us every year,” said Chamber President/CEO Christina Davis. “It’s great to see so many familiar faces year after year, and we love seeing guests from all over the world who hear about the parade and get to experience what it’s like to celebrate the Fourth of July in Westchester.” This year, the parade’s 50 participants were tasked with creating floats and entries with the theme “Cities Across America,” suggested by LMU’s Community Relations Director, Andy O’Reilly. What you’ll see during parade day are floats representing some of America’s best and most beloved cities from Honolulu to New York City and plenty of places inbetween.

Westchester Del Rey Little League (WDRLL) softball players march along the 2017 parade route. Members of the WDRLL, Del Rey American Little League and Westchester Little League will all be participating in this year’s event.

“Our country is made up of so many great cities, each with something unique to offer, and we’re excited to see how our participants pay tribute to them during this year’s event,” said parade chair Gwen Vuchsas. “Everyone has a favorite city, so we hope a few of those are represented on parade day!” Parade favorites like the Great Pyrenees, Westchester Lutheran and the Inglewood High School Sentinel Band are back again this year to march the .75 mile route, and the

parade committee is happy to have newcomers Kentwood Elementary School, St. Mark’s Catholic School and the Serra Drumline. As is the parade tradition, floats will be judged before the parade in the categories of “Best Overall,” “Spirit of the Parade,” “Chairman’s Award” and “Mayor’s Award.” Organizers are also honored to have WWII veterans riding in the parade as the Grand Marshals, organized by nonprofit organization Honor Flight Southland.

“These veterans are American heroes, and it’s so important that we honor them,” said Davis. “There were 16 million Americans that served in WWII, and now there are only roughly 500,000 still alive, so there’s no time left to lose to salute these brave men and women.” The 19th annual LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parade will take place on Wednesday, July 4 beginning at 11 a.m. down Loyola Blvd. from Manchester Ave. (Westchester Park) to LMU. Sidewalk seating is available along the street on a first come, first served basis, and a limited number of bleacher seating is also available at the parade’s center stage at Loyola and 83rd Street. To reserve a prime viewing spot for the approximately one and a half hour event, organizers recommend arriving with your chairs and blankets between 10 and 10:30 a.m. The most popular viewing locations along the route (Loyola Blvd.) are near the announcer booths at the parade start, 83rd St. and 80th St. This year’s announcers include Geoff Maleman, Larry Israelson and Jon Runkle. For more information on the parade, please call the LAX Coastal Chamber at (310) 645-5151 and view our parade program on page 9.

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Middle photo courtesy LMU. Photo courtesy Playa Venice Sunrise Rotary.

Photo by Jon Rou. Photo courtesy Playa Vista/Brookfield.

Clockwise from left: 1. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream will be performed on the campus at LMU on Friday, June 29 and Saturday, June 30. 2. In addition to “Shakespeare on the Bluff,” LMU will also host a movie night on Friday, July 20 in Lawton Plaza. 3. Marina del Rey will host a fireworks celebration on the Fourth of July starting at 9 p.m. 4. The Playa Venice Sunrise Rotary Club will be serving up breakfast to raise money for firefighters during its 20th annual Fire Station 5 pancake breakfast. 5. Playa Vista is home to a robust summer movie and concert schedule.

If you’re looking to have a summer schedule jam-packed with concerts, movies in the park and free (or lowcost) family-friendly events, we’ve got you covered with our list of our favorite upcoming events and activities. Mark your calendars, text your friends, and enjoy the following festive events happening in your community in July and August!

Shakespeare on the Bluff

Various dates • 8 p.m. • FREE 1 LMU Dr., Westchester (in the campus’ Lawton Plaza) LMU is expanding its summer entertainment schedule by bringing Westchester the inaugural season of “Shakespeare on the Bluff” with outdoor performances of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Othello.” The 90-minute performances feature professional actors, as well as LMU alumni, current students and staff, and will hopefully become an annual summer tradition. Presented by the College of Communication and the Fine Arts’ Theatre Arts Program, a “Midsummer Night’s Dream” will be performed on Friday, June 29 and

Saturday, June 30, while “Othello” will be performed on Friday, July 27 and Saturday, July 28. For more info, visit shakespeare.

Elks Lodge 4th of July BBQ

Wednesday, July 4 •12:30 p.m. • $5 8025 W. Manchester Ave., PDR Whether you participated in or enjoyed the Fourth of July Parade from the stands, you’ll probably be in the mood for a good, old fashioned BBQ after the event. Leave the cooking to Elks Lodge volunteers who will be serving up $5 hamburgers and hot dog meals at the Playa del Rey lodge starting at 12:30 p.m.

4th of July Fireworks Celebration

Wednesday, July 4 • 9 p.m. • FREE Marina del Rey The Marina is the place to be for the yearly fireworks spectacular courtesy of the Department of Beaches and Harbors. The twenty-minute show starts at 9 p.m., but you’ll want to get to the Marina early if you want to stake out a prime viewing location

with synchronized music at either Fisherman’s Village (13755 Fiji Way) or Burton Chace Park (13650 Mindanao Way). The Marina’s Mother’s Beach (4135 Admiralty Way) is also a popular viewing location. Streets around the Marina start to close as early as 1 p.m. on July 4 for the fireworks show, so make sure to check out the county’s website for street closure times and recommended ways to get around the Marina. For more info, please visit

LMU Outdoor Movie Nights

Friday, July 20 • 8 p.m. • FREE 1 LMU Drive, Westchester LMU is hosting one outdoor movie night this season with the screening of Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi adventure “Ready Player One,” based on the bestselling novel. The community is invited to visit the beautiful campus for this free event at Lawton Plaza, complete with popcorn courtesy of LMU. Bring your low-slung beach chairs or blankets, and enjoy the movie! Parking is free on campus weekdays

after 8 p.m. For more info, please visit

Food Truck Friday Nights

Friday, July 20 • 5 p.m. • Various $ 8740 Emerson Ave., Westchester Visitation School is celebrating summer with monthly Food Truck Friday Nights and the whole neighborhood is welcome to the Westchester campus for delicious grub and family-friendly fun. During the event, the campus is lined with a variety of food trucks with dinner ready for purchase, and the school’s sugary dessert stand serves up cookies, cupcakes, brownies and more. Plenty of tables and chairs make eating and watching the live music or DJ a breeze. There are also activities for the kids and a beer/wine garden for adults. July’s event theme is “Super Heroes.” The rest of the summer lineup includes: August 17, “Thank You First Responders;” and September 21, “Visitation Pride.” For more info, please visit (continued on page 7)

Reserve your ad space in our 7th Annual Best Of issue!

Last day to vote is Friday, June 29!

Our Best Of winners will be revealed in our favorite issue of the year published Thursday, August 2.

Reserve your ad space by emailing no later than July 16. Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

July 2018 • Page 5

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

(continued from page 5)

20th Annual Pancake Breakfast at Fire Station 5

Saturday, July 28 • 8 to 11 a.m. • $5 8900 Emerson Ave., Westchester Playa Venice Sunrise Rotarians, with the help of the Los Angeles Airport Marriott, will be serving up pancakes (traditional, blueberry and chocolate chip), sausages, OJ and coffee for a good cause during this annual feelgood breakfast. After the food, stick around for tours of the station and meet local firefighters, while the kids enjoy face painting, a bounce house and balloon animals. All proceeds from the event benefit Fire Station 5. For more info, please visit

Beach & Marina Movie Nights

Various dates • 8 p.m. • FREE Various locations Pack your picnic basket and grab your low-backed chairs and blankets for a movie under the stars at Beach and Marina Movie Nights! At Dockweiler Beach, the schedule is: • Friday, July 6– “Big Hero 6” • Friday, July 13– “Coco” • Friday, July 20– “The Incredibles” • Friday, July 27– “Cars 3” • Friday, August 3– “The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature” • Friday, August 10– “Wreck-It Ralph” • Friday, August 17– “Despicable Me” • Friday, August 24– “Up”

• Friday, August 31– “Peter Rabbit” Burton Chace Park’s Saturday movie schedule is: • Saturday, July 14– “La La Land” • Saturday, July 28– “Dirty Dancing” • Saturday, August 11– “Grease” The Dockweiler Beach Youth Center is located at 12505 Vista del Mar in Playa del Rey and Burton Chace Park is located at 13650 Mindanao Way in Marina del Rey. For more info, please visit

Music West’s “1776”

Various dates • 7 p.m. • $15 8501 Emerson Ave., Westchester Music West is back this summer to perform the prize-winning musical “1776” at the Westchester Townhouse. This star-spangled production features six performances with live musical accompaniment. Opening night is Friday, July 13 at 7 p.m. and shows continue on Saturday, July 14 at 7 p.m.; Sunday, July 15 for a matinée performance at 1 p.m; Thursday, July 19 at 7 p.m.; Friday, July 20 at 7 p.m., and Saturday, July 21 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit

Marina del Rey Summer Concert Series

Various dates • 7 p.m. • FREE 13650 Mindanao Way, MDR Burton Chace Park is home to the

popular, award-winning Annual Marina del Rey Summer Concert Series. The lineup alternates between symphonic classics and pop concerts to create a schedule that will appeal to a variety of music fans, who can enjoy the performances in a picturesque locale. This year’s concerts include: • Thursday, July 12– Opera at the Shore • Saturday, July 21– Lalah Hathaway (R&B) • Thursday, July 26– Leonard Bernstein at 100 • Saturday, August 4– Cat Power (indie) • Thursday, August 9– Katharine McPhee (pop) • Saturday, August 18– X (punk) • Thursday, August 23– Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “South Pacific” • Saturday, August 25– encore presentation of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “South Pacific” Plan on getting to the park early to reserve your spot and enjoy the lively park atmosphere. For more info, please visit

Playa Vista Summer Events

Various dates • Various times • FREE Various Playa Vista parks Playa Vista’s Concert Park and the Central Park Bandshell will host the summer’s hottest tickets, thanks to a variety of tribute bands playing 70s rock and screenings of classic family

films. Playa Vista has also partnered with Loyola Marymount University for Sunday performances of ”A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Othello.” Playa Vista’s Concerts in the Park run on select Sundays from 5 to 6:30 p.m. and this year’s lineup includes: • Sunday, July 22– Steely Jam (Steely Dan tribute band) at Central Park Bandshell • Sunday, August 12– Fleetwood Mac vs. Heart (classic rock tribute band) at Central Park Bandshell Playa Vista Movies in the Park are shown from 8 to 10 p.m., and this season’s featured films include: • Friday, July 13– “Coco” at Concert Park • Friday, August 10– “Grease” at Concert Park Shakespeare in the Park performances start at 7 p.m. and will include: • Sunday, July 1– “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at Concert Park • Sunday, July 29–”Othello” at Central Park Bandshell Concert Park is located at Concert Park Drive and Runway Road; and the Central Park Bandshell is located at Waterfront Drive between Artisans Way and Campus Center Drive. For info on parking or using Playa Vista’s shuttle service, please visit What’s on your must-do summer list? Let us know at or at thehtn!


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Farmers’ Market makes changes as it marks 25th anniversary Later this month, the Westchester Farmers’ Market will celebrate its 25th anniversary with its biggest market day yet and a few changes to its schedule. While currently the Wednesday market is held from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., organizers have decided to change the hours to 2 to 7 p.m. to better accommodate the working families of the community. Market Operator Cynthia Rogers says that the later hours will offer greater access to everyone and will allow for some exciting partnerships. “We think this will be a great opportunity to serve more people in our community,” says Rogers. “Over the last twenty-five years, the market has had a great energy, and we think shifting to an afternoon/night market will bring us new visitors and will continue to help us thrive.” Another change for the market is its location. Currently situated just off of Lincoln Blvd. across from Otis College in Westchester Park, the market is moving approximately 200 yards north. Starting July 25, the market will be held in the parking lot used by the Westchester Library, Councilmember Mike Bonin’s office and the Westchester Senior Center. The new entrance for shoppers will be on Manchester Ave. and Loyola Blvd. Rogers hopes the move will allow for greater collaborations with community groups and talks are already underway with the Emerson Ave. Community Garden Club and Otis’ Garden Club to create a community garden next to the new farmers’ market site. The goal would be to grow fruits and vegetables to be donated to the senior center. “The Westchester Farmers’ Market has always been a community hub with locals supporting locals and we want to continue expanding our programming to grow with the Westchester community,” said Rogers. “We’re excited about the opportunities our new location and time will give us.” July will also mark the second anniversary of the Sunday Farmers’ Market located in the Westchester Triangle. The market has been

growing steadily over the last two years, expanding its range of vendors and placing an emphasis on being a weekend destination for families to come together for brunch, shopping and to enjoy activities for the kids. “We are all about creating greater access to healthy local food options, while making the market a fun place to be,” says Don Duckworth, Executive Director of the Westchester Town Center BID, which sponsors the Sunday market. “We’ve really been focusing on our family programming— from face painting, petting zoos and storytelling––so that everyone can come together to enjoy a Sunday morning out in the community.” In honor of both markets’ anniversaries, special events will be held on Wednesday, July 25 from 2 to 7 p.m. and Sunday, July 29 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Each market will have robust programming to create a town fair feeling, with entertainment, lively bands, a roving magician, a flight simulator and a raffle grand prize featuring a Caribbean cruise. Free kids’ activities, including a petting zoo, face painting, balloon animals and a train ride, round out the events. The markets are held every Wednesday in Westchester Park (7000 Manchester Blvd.) and every Sunday in The Triangle (6200 W. 87th St.). The markets are sponsored by Westchester Vitalization, with the Westchester Town Center BID as a community partner for the Triangle location. For more info, please visit


Emergency Food Distribution to those in need. Sponsored by the Westchester Clergy Association

Open Tuesday & Friday, 10am-12pm 355 Beach St., Inglewood

Bring donations of non-perishable food to Covenant Presbyterian Chuch. Volunteers and money donations also welcomed and encouraged!

For more information, please call (310) 677-5597 Ad donated by the Covenant Presbyterian Church

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

4th of July Parade Program

July 2018 • Page 9


History of the LA X Coastal Fourth of July Parade It was the year 2000 and excitement was at an all-time high. The community was embracing a new century, full of bright futures and endless possibilities, and residents were coming together in celebration. The eyes of every man, woman, and child were bright as they relished the small-town feel of this big city in a new age, and local leaders were looking for an iconic event to help bring everyone together. That is where history begins for the LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parade. Westchester had already begun to celebrate the millennium, thanks to a series of events dubbed “The Gathering” and hosted by the Westchester/Playa del Rey Historical Society, but something larger was needed to commemorate such a momentous occasion. Historical Society President and longtime Westchester resident, Mary Lou Crockett, spearheaded the idea of a community parade. Needing a community partner to help bring this idea to life, the LAX Coastal Chamber of Commerce (formerly known as the Westchester/LAX Chamber of Commerce) jumped on board to help.

Then Chamber President, Gwen Vuchsas, worked with the inaugural parade committee to rally participants, volunteers, and sponsors that first year to celebrate America’s birthday under the theme, “A Community with a Kindred Spirit.” The committee worked tirelessly to produce an event worthy of this amazing community; they ensured streets were closed, signage was placed, announcer booths were set up, golf carts were rented, posters were printed, and more. On the morning of July 4th, each committee member was nervous, wondering if anyone would show up to what they believed to be Westchester’s first—and only—community parade. When thousands appeared, it was clear this was more than just a celebration of the year 2000; it was the start of a brand new Westchester tradition. This would be first of many LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parades! Over the years, the parade has seen many faces. From themes recognizing “Hometown Heroes” (2005), “America’s Moments in History” (2007), or “LMU at 100” (2011), to including more than 50 parade entries,

The Chamber and the Community

Chamber welcomes new leadership

Most people recognize chambers of commerce as business organizations that advocate on behalf of their members. While working to promote the success of their members is one part of the LAX Coastal Chamber’s mission, they also work to increase the vitality of their neighborhood. As they like to say that “we are building a better community— together.” The majority of its board of directors live and work in the community and are also committed to a number of other nonprofit boards that promote making our region a strong place to live, work and raise a family. Putting on the parade every year is a labor of love for the Chamber, its staff and committee volunteers who work for months to put together the one-and-a-half hour event. While the parade is the Chamber’s largest community event, the Chamber also hosts the ChamberFest LAeXpo, Protectors’ Luncheon and the Teacher Eddy Awards. The organization is also proud to have started its newest programs, LAX Coworking and Workforce Improvement Trainings (or WIT), both aimed at creating a stronger, and smarter, workforce. For more information on the LAX Coastal Chamber, its members, its programs and events, please visit Thank you to all of our parade volunteers! Page 10 • July 2018

The LAX Coastal Chamber is proud to throw the community’s largest Independence Day celebration each year with its Fourth of July Parade! While the chamber is an organization that advocates for business, it’s equally important to them that they support the community that most of its members call “home.” Supporting the LAX Coastal area is a priority for the chamber’s new leadership, Board Chair Ryan Gales, and Honorary Mayor Cozette Vergari. Both call the Westchester and Playa del Rey areas their “hometowns” and have a passion for helping make the area thrive. Ryan Gales is CEO of Jenkins, Gales & Martinez, an architecture, engineering and construction management firm located in Westchester. As CEO, Ryan has helped lead and oversee some of L.A.’s biggest transportation and transit projects at LAX and with Metro, all while remaining dedicated to our community. Ryan is a graduate of St. Bernard High School, and he is passionate about local education, donating his time with the school’s alumni board and the YMCA’s Youth and Government Program. Ryan was also an integral part of creating the chamber’s Young Professionals group, which cultivates and encourages new and emerging community leaders. “I’ve been a member of the chamber for a long time starting with the Young Professionals group, so I’m excited to be leading this organization for the new year,” said Gales. “We already have so many great programs, events and benefits for our members, but we’re always looking for new ideas and ways to better our organization. This year, I

4th of July Parade Program

attracting more than 10,000 spectators, and printing a robust parade program, this parade has truly grown since its inauguration. The parade committee, still spearheaded by Gwen Vuchsas and the LAX Coastal Chamber of Commerce, is honored each year to watch the LAX Coastal community come together in a sea of red, white, and blue. It is said that true hometown events are rare in large cities, but through the dedication of local residents and businesses we can truly say that the LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parade is our area’s version of a Norman Rockwell painting: proudly patriotic with community camaraderie, and a splash of happy smiles. The LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parade is a tradition—our tradition—and we cannot wait to spend another year with you celebrating both community and country. Happy Birthday, America! Yours truly, Westchester. -Kirby Israelson

Chamber Board Chair Ryan Gales and Honorary Mayor Cozette Vergari.

look forward to reconnecting with small business, as well as launching the Infrastructure, Construction and Engineering Committee to ensure the companies that are investing and active participants in our area are well aware of upcoming opportunities.” Ryan’s first duty as Chair is selecting an Honorary Mayor and choosing Cozette Vergari was an easy decision. Cozette, a family law attorney, is passionate about community service and giving back. She is the Immediate Past Governor of Rotary District 5280 and an active member of the Westchester Rotary Club. She was also named the 2018 Pioneer Woman of the Year by Council District 11 for her work helping shine a spotlight on and working on solutions to homelessness, human trafficking and domestic violence. For more info, please visit

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

4th of July Parade Program

July 2018 • Page 11

LINE OF MARCH 38. Redondo Union High Marching Band

1. LAPD Pacific Area Cadets

12. Fineman Suarez Team

25. Thaine Morris and the Calliope

2. Salute to Our Sponsors

13. Senator Ben Allen

26. Rotary Clubs on the LAFD Firetrucks

3. LA #1 Hog

14. 501st Legion

27. Knights of Columbus

4. LAX Coastal Education Foundation

15. MOMS Club of Westchester/Playa

28. Westchester Del Rey Little League

5. Congresswoman Maxine Waters

16. Westchester Elks Lodge #2050

6. Great Pyrenees Alliance of the West

17. Michelson Found Animals / Adopt & Shop

29. Wright Middle School STEAM Magnet 41. Dance It Out! & Drumline 42. St. Mark's Catholic School 30. Star of the Neighborhood - Brent & 43. Otis College of Art and Design Eli Wagner

7. Los Angeles World Airports, Airport 18. Junipero Serra High School Drumline Police & Flight Path Museum & Learning Center 19. WISH Charter Schools 8. DRALL - Del Rey American Little 20. LAUSD District 4 Nick Melvoin League 21. Westchester Little League 9. Mighty Gondolier Marching Band 22. Westchester Lutheran Church & Venice High School 10. LAPD Capt. James Setzer, Booster Board Member Jann Brauer & LAPD 23. Loyola Marymount University West Traffic Division 24. Grand Marshal - Salute to the 11. Emerson Ave. Community Garden


39. Boy Scouts of America Troop 40. Southern California Masonic Lodge #529, F & AM

31. Inglewood High School Sentinel Marching Band

44. St. Bernard High School Marching Band

32. Silicon Beach Parent's Group

45. Kentwood Elementary

33. St. Monica Catholic High School

46. St. Anastasia Catholic School

34. LAX Coastal Chamber Chair Ryan Gales

47. 1932 Bandwagon w/ Mariachis

35. Westchester Farmer's Market 36. Kentwood Players

48. Charro Horses 49. LAX Coastal Chamber of Commerce

37. Visitation Catholic School

*Final line of march as of press time

Visitation School students get decked out in red, white and blue to celebrate the Fourth of July. This year, the school’s float will pay tribute to New Orleans. Read more on page 23.

WE WANT TO SEE YOUR PARADE PHOTOS! With everyone out in full patriotic force on the Fourth of July, it’s a great place to take photos of your family, friends, the community and the parade entries! This year, we have created the #LAXCoastalParade hashtag in the hopes that you’ll share all of these great photos with us. There are three ways to participate:

1. Like the HomeTown News on Facebook at and post your photo on our wall 2. Follow the Chamber on Instagram at @laxcoastal. Take a photo and tag it with @laxcoastal and #LAXCoastalParade 3. Email your photo to To make this a little more fun, our favorite photographer will receive a $25 gift card to a local restaurant! Our favorite photos will also have the opportunity to be featured on our social media sites and in the parade recap of the August Edition of the HTN. Photos must be submitted no later than Monday, July 16. Email

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4th of July Parade Program

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

4th of July Parade Program

July 2018 • Page 13

This year’s parade participants LAPD Pacific Division Junior Cadets

schools, and we welcome your support and donations. Save the date for our Golf Tournament with LAX Kiwanis on Monday, August 27 and our 2019 Rock Roll & Run for Education 5K/1K on Saturday, March 9. Visit us online at to learn more. And thanks to local realtor, Nanci Edwards, for sponsoring our float!

Continuing our annual tradition, the LAPD Pacific Area Junior Cadets lead off our parade and proudly carry the American flag. The Cadets range from ages 14 to 20 and work in close partnership with LAPD Community Relations. They will be marching all the way to 80th Street to give everyone in attendance the chance to salute our nation’s flag.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters

“Cities Across America” Salute to our Sponsors This parade would not be possible without the generosity of our sponsors. Carrying our great flag, here are representatives of the organizations that have stepped up to the plate to ensure the success of this event. Let’s make sure to give them a big round of applause! Admiral Sponsor: Stephanie Younger Group | Compass Celebration Sponsor: Jane St. John, RE/MAX Estate Properties Flagship Sponsors: Robin Zacha/Zacha Homes, Decron Properties, Drollinger Family Charitable Foundation, HHLA and the HomeTown News Freedom Sponsors: The Neighborhood Council of Westchester/ Playa and Westchester Lutheran Church and School Patriot Sponsors: Cedars-Sinai/Marina del Rey Hospital, Councilmember Mike Bonin, Fineman Suarez Team, Loyola Marymount University, Playa Venice Sunrise Rotary Club and Star Waggons Friends of the Parade: The Calliope Man, Carousel School, Ladies of the Westchester Elks, Los Angeles Airport Marriott, Michelson Found Animals Foundation/Adopt & Shop, SoCalGas, Southbay Custom Integration, St. Anastasia School, St. Monica’s Catholic High School and the

Page 14 • July 2018

Look out for this year’s award-winning floats and entries that are bringing home special honors for excellence in the following categories: Best Overall Spirit of the Parade Chairmans Award Mayors Award Thank you to the local Girl Scouts for being the parade’s official banner carriers! Westchester Elks Lodge #2050. Firecracker Sponsors: Cantalini’s Salerno Beach Restaurant, the Smith family: Garrett, Trish and Analise, Visitation Catholic School and Tom Corte & Dana Wright

L.A. #1 HOG Chapter Harley Owners Group (or “HOG” for short), the Los Angeles Area’s #1 Chapter is sponsored by Bartel’s Harley-Davidson in Marina del Rey. L.A. #1 is celebrating its 32nd year as a chapter and has more than 150 members. These riders are active contributors to our community, serving various charities and giving back to our veterans.

4th of July Parade Program

L.A. #1 HOG has been a proud participant in the Westchester 4th of July Parade since the beginning and is glad to be here in the 19th year of the celebration!

LAX Coastal Education Foundation The LAX Coastal Education Foundation is going places! Launched last year, the foundation supports all of our local schools including public, private, parochial and charter. Just like our country has many beautiful and diverse cities, including the ones we’re representing in our float (along with planes, trains and automobiles), we have many great and diverse schools in our community! The LAX Coastal Education Foundation raises funds and awareness for all our local

Proudly representing Westchester, Playa del Rey, Playa Vista, Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lennox, Lomita, Torrance and parts of South Los Angeles in the United States Congress, Congresswoman Maxine Waters is a strong advocate for all of her constituents. She continues to fight against LAX expansion into our neighborhoods; for preservation of the Ballona Wetlands; for the growth of new technology-based industry; and for other issues of importance to Los Angeles. She is the first woman to be elected by her peers in Congress to serve as the Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, which works to rein in the fraudulent practices of banks and to ensure the fairness of our lending institutions. Congresswoman Waters is joined today by her husband, Ambassador Sidney Williams, and team members Hamilton Cloud and Nate Woodward.

Great Pyrenees Alliance of the West (GPAW) Great Pyrenees are livestock guardians, therapy and service dogs—and also movie stars and show dogs! The white dogs in “Santa Paws” and “Finding Neverland” were Great Pyrenees, and the giant white “lapdog” in the Little Caesar TV ad was a GPAW dog. A descendant of the Santa Paws dog is here today, as well as several AKC Champions including a GPAW dog who competed at the 2018 Westminster Kennel Club dog show. Today is our 18th year in this parade! GPAW Rescue places Great Pyrenees in forever homes. Ask us about a Pyr rescue. We’re with the big white dogs!

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

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This year’s parade participants Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA)

also extend heartfelt appreciation to our many volunteers, including the generous contributions of the families of Elliot and Mary Anne Stern, Dorothy and Russell Stone and Paula Cohen. For more info, visit us at

Westchester welcomes LAX as they celebrate their 90th Anniversary! Celebrating with us today are members of LAX Community Relations, airport police, cadets, fabulous comfort canines and their handlers from the LAX PUP’s program, Volunteer Information Professionals (VIPs) and LAX airline partners from American and Delta. Volunteers from the Flight Path Museum & Learning Center are wearing vintage pilot and flight attendant uniforms from the 60s and 70s! The museum is home to both aviation and aerospace exhibits. The LAX Community Relations Division’s focus is to establish programs and services that address the needs and concerns of surrounding airport communities through opportunities, including youth programs, aviation education, volunteerism and community/civic participation. For more information about LAX, please visit Congratulations on 90 years of serving our community!

Fineman Suarez Team A longtime supporter of our community and marching in our parade for the first time, here is the Fineman Suarez Team led by James and Roxanne Suarez. The team prides itself on being a strong pillar within the community and enjoys supporting the growth of this wonderful neighborhood and bringing its residents together! They’ve selected Anaheim as their theme city for the many families who travel there. The city represents wonderful values such as family, fun and togetherness! If you have real estate questions or need home improvement recommendations, don’t hesitate to call the Silicon Beach experts, your Fineman Suarez Team!

Del Rey American Little League (DRALL)

Established in 1954, Del Rey American (also known as DRALL) is little league baseball serving the Westchester and Playa del Rey communities. The league is comprised of boys and girls from 5 to 12 years of age. In 2017, Del Rey American Little League’s All-Star teams won district championships in the 8-9-10 year-old division, as well as in the Majors Division. This past year, over 300 boys and girls participated in Del Rey American Little League’s spring season! We wish you a Happy Fourth of July!

Venice High’s Mighty Gondolier Marching Band Next up is the Mighty Gondolier Marching Band! Marching for the third consecutive summer, the band is under the direction of David W. Lee, Director of Instrumental Studies at Venice High School. Venice High School cheer and dance teams are joining the Mighty Gondoliers. The cheer team is under the direction of Ms. Joanna Trocan-Garrett, and the dance team is under the direction of Valeria Rivera. Our group’s graduating seniors will attend the following colleges in the fall: UCLA, USC, UC Santa Cruz, Cal State Long Beach, San Diego State, SMC, ELAC and West L.A. We’d like to give special recognition to Abigail Barron for receiving a full-ride music scholarship to Mount St. Mary’s University! Tag and follow the band on Instagram @ venicehsband. For more info about the Venice

Senator Ben Allen

High School Music Department, please visit

LAPD Captain James Setzer and Booster Board Member Jann Brauer with LAPD West Traffic Division James Setzer is the Captain at the LAPD Pacific Area Community Police Station, located at Culver Blvd. and Centinela. Born in Asheville, North Carolina, Captain Setzer has been protecting our citizens and streets since being selected as Commanding Officer in October 2017. He would like to remind everyone to lock up their belongings and report suspicious activity, because if we all work together, we can help make our area safer! It is the mission of the Los Angeles Police Department to safeguard lives and property in the communities it serves; to reduce the incidence and fear of crime and to enhance public safety. The mandate of the men and women of the LAPD is to perform these services with honor, integrity and the highest ethical standards. Riding with Captain Setzer and the LAPD West Traffic Division is Jann Brauer, Board Member of the Pacific Area Boosters Association. Happy Fourth of July from the LAPD to you!

Emerson Avenue Community Garden

We heard it on the “grapevine” on the way to the Central Valley and the breadbasket of America, that the fertile Santa Clarita Valley lies a short hour-long drive north from LAX. Within the valley, Highway 126 runs parallel to the Santa Clara River, winding a course to meet the Pacific Coast. Along the way are the cities of Piru, Fillmore and Santa Paula. A rich agricultural heritage marks the history of these cities, which house the farmers, laborers and businesses that support the cultivation of oranges, lemons, avocados, field crops and commercial nurseries. The Emerson Avenue Community Garden celebrates the “growing community” of Fillmore alongside its sister cities and the Westchester Farmers’ Markets’ recognition of Ventura. Our renowned Wheel Barrow Drill Team leads our parade of dedicated gardeners while we showcase the bounty of the garden and our joy in sharing our community roots. The Emerson Avenue Community Garden will host the 3rd Annual Westchester Arts & Music (WAM) festival on September 15. Enjoy our regular class offerings and the grandest block party around this September! We can’t wait to see you there! The community garden thanks our neighbors, friends and generous sponsors for another great year as the club looks to kick off a capital campaign to improve access to the garden. We

California State Senator Ben Allen has proudly represented the 26th Senate District, which consists of the Westside and coastal South Bay communities of Los Angeles County stretching from Santa Monica to the Palos Verdes Peninsula since 2014. Senator Allen serves as Chair of the Senate Education Committee, as well as the legislature’s Joint Committee on the Arts. Senator Allen is a native of Santa Monica, a former board member and former Board President of the Santa MonicaMalibu Unified School District. Today, Senator Allen is riding in the parade with his wife, Melanie, and they are expecting a baby this October! This is his fourth year appearing in the parade. Senator Allen looks forward to continuing to serve you in the following years and invites you to reach out to him or his staff at their Redondo Beach office!

501st Legion--“Vader’s Fist”

Let’s welcome The 501st Legion back to this year’s parade! The 501st Legion, Rebel Legion and Mandalorian Mercs are 501(c)(3) nonprofit groups that help raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity efforts around the world every year. Each member of these three clubs made their own movie-accurate costumes, representing the rich lore of “Star Wars,” by hand. For more information, please visit

for your safety and convenience While we hope you are having fun and enjoying the parade with all of its music, floats and marching groups, safety is our number one priority! A FIRST-AID STATION is located at the eastside corner of 83rd and Loyola. Need a band aid? We have basic first-aid kits at each announcer booth, on our golf carts, and at the VIP tent at the starting line. Just ask a volunteer in a purple parade shirt for assistance. PORT-A-POTTIES are located at 85th & Loyola, 83rd & Loyola, and 80th & Loyola. Please walk your bike or scooter if you need to cross the parade route. Riders that are not with an entry in the parade will be asked to walk their bikes/scooters to ensure the safety of parade entries and to keep the parade running smoothly. Page 16 • July 2018

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

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This year’s parade participants MOMS Clubs of Westchester/Playa

Who is splashing and sailing your way? Why, it’s the MOMS Club of Westchester showing us Monterey, California! We are parents raising families in Westchester and it ain’t easy, but we keep our heads above water and help others do the same. We are just one chapter of MOMS Club, an international nonprofit organization. “MOMS” stands for “Moms Offering Moms Support.” Our goal is to bring neighborhood parents together to enrich the lives they lead, those of their children and their communities. We give our members the opportunity to participate in community-service activities, social events, moms’ night out and children’s playgroups. The MOMS Club has monthly socials during the day for moms and kids in addition to a monthly moms’ night out. We are a charity-based organization and support a variety of local charities throughout the year. If you are a Westchester or Playa mom, we would love for you to join us! For more info, visit We wish all neighbors and families a fin-tastic 4th of July!

Westchester Elks Lodge #2050 The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks is an American fraternity that donates approximately $200 million every year to make our communities better places to live. The programs involve assistance to children with disabilities, as well as support to scouting and college scholarships nationwide. A friend

of our veterans, hundreds of thousands of Elks and their families have given generously of their time, energy and resources so that the lives of our ill and aging veterans will be enhanced. All are welcome to join the Elks for their annual family-friendly Fourth of July barbecue following the parade. The Lodge is located at 8025 W. Manchester Ave. in Playa del Rey with plenty of free parking in the back.

Michelson Found Animals/Adopt & Shop

Here comes the truly one-of-a-kind Catty Wagon! The Catty Wagon is Michelson Found Animals’ mobile kitten adoption center. As the first custom-built, mobile adoption vehicle created just for kittens, the Catty Wagon makes it possible for thousands of shelter kittens to find forever homes. The Catty Wagon travels all over the Los Angeles area, matching homeless cats and kittens with local families. The Catty Wagon even has cat supplies for sale so you can get everything you need to bring your new pet home that very same day. This converted old taco truck serves up love, and you can usually find it at Adopt & Shop—a Culver City pet store and animal shelter where the pets get all the profits. Go to to learn more about the Catty Wagon and find out where it is this month! The Catty Wagon is available for farmers’ markets and all kinds of events.

Serra High School Drumline

Let’s welcome today’s National Anthem singers, an a capella group! Westchester resident, Dave Wolowic of Hey Dave! Productions LLC, is proud to have produced and provided this years’ National Anthem singers. For the past 4 years, this group of talented singers have sung together across L.A. County. Today’s singers include: • Jordan Lamoureux (Bass) not only sings bass, but plays one too. Jordan has played in numerous orchestra pits for musicals, and he

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Junipero Serra High School Drumline is

comprised of 13 youngsters from 9th through 11th grade (and one 8th grader). They have marched in the Gardena Martin Luther King Parade and the Gardena Cinco de Mayo Parade. They have also performed with the Catholic High School Combine Band, marching in the Hollywood Lane Christmas Parade and more. They also provide entertainment for football and basketball games and for other civic events under the leadership of Principal Jeff Guzman and Vice Principal Nadia Wissa. They are proud and honored to be a part of this great parade. On behalf of the Serra family, we thank you!

WISH Charter Schools

WISH Charter has participated in the Fourth of July Parade for the past 7 years and is proud to have received the 2017 Chairman’s Award and the Spirit Award in 2014! This year, WISH celebrates the theme of “Cities Across America” by showcasing the work of our high school student artists in a presentation paying tribute to the Big Apple—New York City! The incredibly talented scholars of the WISH Academy High School Public Arts class, taught by local artist Steve O’Loughlin, hand built this float using recycled cardboard and other repurposed materials. The float is a montage of the major icons in New York City, including the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, Broadway, Times Square, and the Empire State Building. Students, teachers and parents from WISH Community

currently is playing with the American Vocal Academy Rob Staley Band. and in Germany. • Mandy Aceves (Soprano) • Justine Woodford (Alto), is a recent graduate of UC another CSUN graduate, can Santa Cruz and performs in be found performing in clubs her girl duo, Mosaia, at the around the L.A. area. From a Chevy Chase Country Club. very young age she knew she • Curt Winterhalter wanted to be a singer/tap (Tenor) is a graduate of California State dancer and even had her father build a stage in University Northridge and has also studied and the backyard where she would hone her craft! performed on stages in France with the Franco • Matt Cordon (Beatboxer) has performed at

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School (TK-8) also worked on this float and are proudly marching alongside, representing WISH and our Westchester community! For more information on WISH Charter Schools, please visit Thank you, LAX Coastal Chamber, for this amazing annual event!

LAUSD District 4 Nick Melvoin

Riding in our parade for the second year in a row is LAUSD School Board Vice President Nick Melvoin. Nick represents the dynamic communities of Board District 4, from West Los Angeles to the West San Fernando Valley, including all of our public Westchester/ Playa schools. Nick’s election to the Board in May of 2017 follows a career fighting for our city’s school children as a teacher, attorney and advocate. He has spent his first year on the board focused on increasing parent and community engagement, making the district more transparent and accountable, directing more resources to schools and bringing a new spirit of partnership and collaboration to L.A.’s public schools. Nick believes that together, with the right leadership, we can ensure that every student in Los Angeles has the opportunity to succeed! To learn more about Nick and to stay up-todate on LAUSD news, follow @nickmelvoin on Twitter or @boardmembermelvoin on Facebook and Instagram. Sign-up for his newsletter at signup-for-our-newsletter.

Walt Disney World, Universal Studios Florida and can be seen almost every day beatboxing and singing at Universal Studios Hollywood. • Halley Kim (Alto) was born and raised in Maryland and is a graduate of the University of Michigan. Wolowic is very proud of his singers and is excited to share their talents with the community by being part of the Fourth of July Parade! The group is available for corporate events and can be reached at

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

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This year’s parade participants Westchester Little League

produces sound by sending gas, steam or compressed air through large whistles— originally, locomotive whistles. Today, the calliope is played by Andrew Barrett. The calliope is owned and driven by Westchester resident Thaine Morris. Thank you, Thaine, for celebrating our nation’s birthday with us!

Westchester Little League (WLL) has provided youth baseball for the children residing or attending school in our community since 1954. Carl E. Nielsen Youth Park is the home of our little league. Each season, they average more than 200 boys and girls baseball players from ages 5-12 years spread throughout four divisions. The 2016 10U All-Star team made it to the state sub-division, and they finished 3rd in all of California. The 2017 11U All-Star team won district. Come support our four All-Star teams this summer! For more info, please visit

Rotary Clubs on the LAFD Firetrucks

Westchester Lutheran Church & School

In accordance with this year’s parade float theme, Westchester Lutheran Church and School is proud to introduce their entry representing the City of Los Angeles. The fantastic “Cities Across America” are what make up this great nation. All cities are expanding in diversity, technology, and—of course— entertainment! Los Angeles has its roots deeply-seated in the entertainment industry, so it only seemed fair to realize a float that carried this theme and present to Westchester its first Oscar for being such a great neighborhood in Los Angeles! The Academy Awards are always here in Los Angeles, along with some of the most prominent film and entertainment companies in the world. Westchester is the home of hundreds of great film and entertainment professionals, not to mention great families, so this is only too fitting. As you can see on this float, the many great icons of Los Angeles are shown around the Oscar and in the filmstrip that encompasses the float. From the Hollywood sign to our very local Randy’s Donuts, Los Angeles is filled with many things that make a great city, which almost makes our world-class traffic tolerable! This float is dedicated to Westchester Lutheran’s own Pastor Fred and Head of School Sandra Masted for their outstanding performance at Westchester Lutheran Church and School for the past 50-plus years. They have made this last

decade of floats possible by encouraging the skills and talents of Westchester Lutheran families to help make our entire community stronger. Together, they have been dedicated to building great heart and spirit into all of their students at Westchester Lutheran Church and School. The Masted’s commitment has been an amazing blessing, and we are all so thankful! On behalf of Westchester Lutheran School, we wish all the families of this great neighborhood a wonderful, fun and safe 4th of July! And, as you look upon the fireworks this evening, make sure to hug your parents and thank them for allowing you to grow up in Los Angeles, and enjoy the opportunity to be the next generation that will keep L.A. the great city that it is. Happy 4th of July!

Loyola Marymount University LMU is proud to once again participate in Westchester’s 4th of July Parade. This year’s float celebrates LMU’s Jesuit tradition and the 27 other Jesuit universities and colleges that are scattered in “Cities Across America.” Joining us today are members of the LMU Men’s and Women’s basketball teams. Go Lions and Happy 4th!

Grand Marshal: Salute to our WWII Veterans The Parade Committee is honored to have WWII Veterans riding in the parade as our Grand Marshals this year. The Veterans riding with us today are from Honor Flight Southland, a 100% volunteer nonprofit organization created solely to honor America’s Veterans for all of their sacrifices. They safely transport these heroes to Washington DC to visit and reflect at their memorials, with top priority given to the senior veterans of World War II. According to the US Department of Veterans Affairs statistics, only 558,000 of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II were alive in 2017, so our time to express our thanks to these brave men and women is running out. Thank you to our WWII Veterans riding in the parade today, and all of our veterans and troops for your service to our country!

Thaine Morris and the Calliope

We are proud to once again have the Calliope Car in our parade! A calliope is a musical instrument that

Give a warm welcome to the Playa Venice Sunrise and Westchester Rotarians, LAX Coastal Chamber representatives and the Los Angeles City Fire Department! These community leaders and their families are riding on a 1953 restored Mack fire truck owned by longtime Westchester resident, Pat Carey! Providing music is violinist Kiev Morales, a recent graduate of Venice High School. Rotary is a service group made up of dedicated men and women who use their “time, talent and treasure” to give back to our community, supporting such projects as the teacher mini-grants, the Teacher Eddy Awards and today’s parade. The Playa Venice Sunrise Rotary hopes to see you at their Saturday, July 28 pancake breakfast at Fire Station 5. Visit for more info! Let’s show our appreciation for these great volunteers!

Knights of Columbus The Westchester Knights of Columbus Council #3744 is representing the city of Wichita, Kansas, the home of its namesake Fr. Emil Kapaun. Fr. Emil was an ordained Catholic priest in the diocese of Wichita and served as Chaplain during the Korean conflict. He was taken as a prisoner of war in 1950 and is known to have risked his life countless times for other soldiers before he died in captivity on May 23, 1951. Fr. Kapaun was awarded the Medal of Honor (posthumously) on April 11, 2013. The Westchester Knights of Columbus are proud to bear his name and proud to recognize our members who have served our country.

All parade photos by Glenn Marzano.

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

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This year’s parade participants

Westchester Del Rey Little League Westchester Del Rey Little League was founded by Mary Ann and Kent Mace in 1974 and had approximately 50 girls playing the first season. Today, the league has grown to over 300 players on 25 teams ranging from ages 4 to 16. We have players from a variety of divisions participating in the parade today. The season runs from the beginning of March through July. Please contact wdrllreg@gmail. com or visit for more info.

Wright Middle School STEAM Magnet + Drumline

Wright Middle School STEAM Magnet opened in 2013 as a full magnet school offering 6-8th grade students the opportunity to explore arts, engineering and design. Wright has participated in this hometown parade for many years and is always proud to feature its student-built floats. Today, we are proud to present “The Wright Flier” featuring Orville and Wilbur Wright puppeteers. “Wright First in Flight” from the city of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina is a replica of the Kitty Hawk plane that the Wright Brothers flew. The school’s mascot, the Sea Hawk, is piloting the plane and represents our community’s unwavering belief in our “Be R.E.A.L” values: Respect, Empathy, Ambition and Leadership! Design, build and learn at Wright, where STEAM fuels the future! Along with our exciting float entry is our Beat

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Hawk drumline under the direction of Wright music teacher, Eleni Maureas, student banner carriers and our dancing Sea Hawk student mascot. Wright is a successful nationally-recognized magnet school. Last year, it was selected as a model school for the Magnet Schools of America Conference, serving as a tour site and a presenting school at the convention. Wright offers Project Lead the Way classes, including flight & space, automation & robotics, green architecture, energy in the environment and design & modeling. In addition to these electives, all students learn 21st century skills through project based learning and STEAM integrated lessons.

Star of the Neighborhood A Star of the Neighborhood is someone who quietly makes a difference in our community. They are the unsung heroes, but are well-known by the lives they touch. Each Star of the Neighborhood, proudly picked by the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa (NCWP) every year, helps to better the lives of so many in our neighborhood. This year the NCWP is proud to recognize Brent and Eli Wagner as our Stars of the Neighborhood! These Westchester residents were looking to create a park closer to their home that everyone could also enjoy. They worked hard to raise money and find a location to turn this dream into a reality. In December 2017,

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with the help of Holy Nativity Church, they opened a community pocket park with play equipment on the corner of Dunbarton and 83rd Street. Read more about the Wagners on page 6 of the HomeTown News. Thank you, Brent and Eli!

Inglewood High School Sentinel Marching Band

The Inglewood High School Sentinel Marching Band is making its fourth appearance in the parade today! The Sentinel Marching Band’s reputation for being a great musical force is growing. They have been featured in Teachers Rock on CBS, Cartoon Network’s Hall of Game Show and on a recent commercial for Beats by Dre called No Strings Attached. They were also featured in the half-time shows of the NFLPA Bowl Games at the Stub Hub Center in Carson and have won countless sweepstakes and first place awards in parades and marching competitions over the years.

Silicon Beach Parents Group

Joining us for the second consecutive year is the Silicon Beach Parents Group (SBPG) led by founding parent Gabrielle D’Addario! Joined by local families marching, rolling or strolling, this entry is representing Las Vegas. SBPG was created as an inclusive group

providing community outreach, support and education through community events like the Playa Vista Fun Run and the Silicon Beach Fashion Show. SBPG is still accepting volunteers to model in their upcoming fashion show, which takes place on August 4 in Playa Vista at the newly renovated Concert Park. You can learn more about the Silicon Beach Parents Group by visiting siliconbeachparents. com. Happy Fourth of July!

St. Monica Catholic High School

Join us in welcoming St. Monica Catholic High School for the third year! Representing the beautiful city of Santa Monica, St. Monica is currently the high school of more than 125 students from the Westchester/Playa del Rey area. The St. Monica family is proud to have so many valuable ties to the community and is happy to be part of this American tradition. St. Monica Catholic High School fields 25 athletic teams, an award-winning performing arts program and offers an interactive STEM program. This year, our seniors celebrated a 100% 4-year college acceptance rate. In helping to grow intrepid and curious minds, any one of our two dozen clubs and organizations offer students the opportunity to expand their interests. At St. Monica we are thoroughly invested as educators, and strive to give our students the confidence and skills to take their place in the modern, fast-moving world.

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

This year’s parade participants LAX Coastal Chamber Chair Ryan Gales Please give a warm welcome to LAX Coastal Chamber Chair, Ryan Gales! Ryan began his career under former Mayor James Hahn after graduating from UCLA. He has over 15 years of experience providing outreach, training and development services within Los Angeles. Today, he leverages those relationships as the CEO for Jenkins, Gales & Martinez, a prominent design and construction management firm specializing in transportation for LAWA and Metro. Riding with Ryan today are his nieces Sung Hee and Min Jee. On behalf of the leadership of the LAX Coastal Chamber, we wish everyone a safe and happy Fourth of July!

Westchester Farmers’ Market

Westchester Farmers’ Market is representing our sister farming city, Ventura—the land of small farms and California dreaming! You can find local produce from Ventura each and every week at your farmers’ markets’ two locations: Sundays in the Westchester Triangle from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Wednesdays, which will have new hours, 2 to 7 p.m. starting July 25. The market will also be moving locations to the north end of Westchester Park in the Council/ Library lot, right here off Loyola Blvd. Join your local farmers’ market on Wednesday, July 25 and Sunday, July 29 to celebrate the market’s 25th anniversary with free kids’ activities, big bands, dance floors, raffles, a magic show and so much more. Here’s to 25 years of farm fresh produce and community! The Westchester Farmers’ Market is sponsored by Westchester Vitalization and the Westchester Town Center BID district, two nonprofits that have served the Westchester community for over 20 years. For more info, please visit or visit facebook. com/westchesterfarmersmarket.

Kentwood Players

Members of the Kentwood Players, Westchester’s favorite community theater, are

celebrating “Cities Across America” by choosing Atlantic City and the famous boardwalk of the early 1900s. The Kentwood Players has been providing quality live entertainment to the community for more than 67 years! Its next production is the very funny “Daddy’s Dyin’ Who’s Got the Will” opening next Friday, July 13, and running for six weekends. Kentwood Players performs at the Westchester Playhouse and is a completely volunteer, member-run organization. Producing six shows each year, the group is always looking for new members, technicians, designers and performers. Check us out at

Visitation Catholic School

Visitation School is proud to represent the city of New Orleans and to once again have a float that is 100% designed and built by the parents of the school representing the “Big Easy,” baby! Our float is a scaled replica of a traditional riverboat that steams up and down the Mississippi. As you can see, we have our own students waving from the 3 stories of our New Orleans-style riverboat. Following our float is a traditional New Orleans “second line” jazz band that is playing some of the classic jazz tunes that helped put New Orleans on the map and made the Big Easy one of the most iconic and culturally-rich cities in our amazing country. Following our float, we have a classic car with our outstanding teacher of the year, Jose Murillo, and a second car with more Visitation families who are alive with pride for the U.S.A. and their school. Happy 4th of July, Westchester! Visitation Catholic School has had a history of excellence in the community since 1947. We are proud to offer the best in educational, athletic and other youth programs in Westchester. Visitation school educates close to 300 amazing students in grades JK through 8th grade and is served by an outstanding and dedicated faculty, staff and administration. Visitation is led by Pastor Fr. Jim Forsen and Principal Chris Watson. For more info, please visit visitationschool. org. Go Bulldogs!

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This year’s parade participants Redondo Union High School Marching Band Welcome to the Redondo Union Band! The Redondo Union Band and Guard is under the direction of Ray Vizcarra, the Dance Guard is led by Sammie Dobson and the percussion is led by Alan Han. The band and guard have been finalists for three years in a row in the California State Grand Championships, where only 12 of the top schools, out of all entries, are chosen. In 2015, they won the division 4A state championships, and in 2016, they were crowned the bronze state champion in the grand championship final! The students in this organization also branch off into other performing ensembles, which also earn high accolades throughout the state. They have even performed on stage at Carnegie Hall in New York.

Boy Scouts of America The Westchester Boy Scouts have participated in the parade since its beginning, and this year’s Boy Scout float celebrates the city of Irving, Texas, home to the headquarters of the Boy Scouts of America. Cub, Boy and Venture Scouting develops character through outdoor experiences, leadership opportunities and service to one’s community. Scouting’s most recognizable contributions to Westchester are the numerous Eagle Scout Projects around the city, demonstrating the leadership and service skills scouting promotes in each level of the program. Westchester Scouting represents a network of responsible, hard working and dedicated youth who consider service to the community as their primary objective. Boy Scout Troop 927 meets the first three Mondays of each month at 7 p.m. at Covenant Presbyterian Church. Check out for more info on joining!

Southern California Masonic Lodge #529, F & AM

The Southern California Lodge is representing Minneapolis, Minnesota and its Scandinavian heritage. The masons and members

Please join us in singing: “We are the world We are the children We are the ones who make a brighter day So let’s start giving There’s a choice we’re making We’re saving our own lives It’s true we’ll make a brighter day Just you and me” (Michael Jackson’s “We Are The World”)

St. Bernard High School of the De Molay masonic youth organization are “rowing” a replica Viking ship down the parade route. The Southern California Masonic Lodge has been a part of this community for over 60 years, beginning as the Westchester Lodge, before being joined by Westgate, Menorah, Loyalty and several other lodges over the years. Our core mission remains the same: a place for men to meet and do their best to become better men. We have many events in and out of the lodge, located in Playa del Rey, every year and we are always looking for men to join us. If you are interested in joining, just ask! Members meet the first Thursday of every month and there is an open house the third Thursday of each month.

Dance It Out!

Dancing in the parade for the second time is Dance It Out!, led by longtime Westchester resident and dance fitness instructor Sheri Weitz. In the spirit of freedom embodied by the city of Philadelphia, where the Declaration of Independence was signed, Sheri and her troupe dance to Elton John’s “Philadelphia Freedom,” performed by the newly-formed Westchester classic rock band, Wayback Daddies. Sheri Weitz teaches Dance It Out! every Thursday night at 7 p.m. at L.A. Arts Collective in Westchester. Learn more at DIOsheri. Let’s also give a warm welcome to the Wayback Daddies as they make their debut today! Learn more at

St. Mark’s Catholic School

St. Marks Catholic School, “The Pride of Venice!,” is taking part in the parade for the very first time this year and is representing Honolulu, Hawaii! They are led by Father Paul Spellman and Principal Mary Ann McQueen. St. Mark’s Elementary School offers classes starting at Transitional Kindergarten through 8th grade. St. Mark’s 8th grade graduates are marching in the parade today, and they will all be attending their “first choice” high school in the fall. Congratulations to the class of 2018! The St. Mark Music Program, led by Music Director Christian Robinson, is marching today with their ukuleles. Also marching are some of the cast and crew of this year’s theater program presentation of the “Little Mermaid.” Look out for the production of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” next year. Many of the school’s sports team members from football, track & field, crosscountry, basketball, volleyball and soccer are marching today as well! We wish you all a blessed Independence Day! For more information, please contact St. Mark’s School at (310) 821-6612 or at Join us for our prospective parent tour on October 9 at 10 a.m.

Otis College of Art and Design The Creative Action Moving Art class of Otis College of Art and Design invites us all to share our love and support with U.S. cities, which have recently experienced unthinkable tragedies.

Celebrating 61 years of Catholic High School Education, here is St. Bernard High School, your local community high school serving Westchester, Playa del Rey and surrounding areas. St. Bernard High School offers a singlegender STEM Program, the only one of its kind within a Catholic co-educational school setting in Los Angeles. All other classes at St. Bernard are co-ed, providing “the best of both worlds,” and a well-rounded high school experience for their students. The Transfiguration drum line and SBHS alumnus, Chris Nuno, is leading St. Bernard today. On the count of three, please join St. Bernard High School and say, “Hail All, Hail!”

Kentwood Elementary School Kentwood Elementary is very excited to be marching in the LAX Coastal Fourth of July Parade this year! Kentwood is an awardwinning, true community school in the heart of Westchester. The students who attend are challenged each day and exposed to many special programs including: music, dance, theater, computer lab, science lab, yoga and a Wonder of Reading Library. They have just launched a robotics program and are leading the charge for a new Westside Robotics League at LMU starting next school year. We invite you to be a part of the dynamic Kentwood family and experience our outstanding school for yourself. Tours are the first Thursday of each month starting at 9 a.m. For more info, please visit Happy 4th of July!

All parade photos by Glenn Marzano. Thank you Glenn for being our parade photographer!

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4th of July Parade Program

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

4th of July Parade Program

July 2018 • Page 25

This year’s parade participants

St. Anastasia Catholic School

LAX Coastal Chamber & Thank Yous!

St. Anastasia Catholic School and Parish have lovingly served the Westchester and Playa del Rey community for more than 60 years. Our students, ranging from Junior Kindergarten to 8th grade, experience an environment that is rich in a tradition of academic excellence and service to others. During the past year, our students shined in mock trial, academic decathlon, robotics, championship athletics and our school musical, “Shrek.” Our one-to-one ChromeBook and iPad programs help our students use 21st century tools to become community leaders in the future. A diverse arts program includes fine arts, music, dance and drama, and our athletics program features such varied sports as archery, golf, track and field and cross-country. St. Anastasia students thrive in high school and college, and often return to give back to the community in many ways. The St. Anastasia School family is thrilled to participate in this joyous celebration and we wish everyone a happy and healthy Fourth of July!

On behalf of the LAX Coastal Chamber of Commerce, Chair Ryan Gales, Honorary Mayor Cozette Vergari and the 2018 Parade Committee, have a happy and safe Fourth of July! The Chamber staff--Judith Ciancimino, Christina Davis, Kirby Israelson and Kelli Trombley--want to thank you for coming out today to celebrate “Cities Across America!” The Fourth of July Parade wouldn’t be possible without the help of a lot of people! So many individuals, organizations and sponsors deserve our gratitude, but here are a few special “thank yous” for making today such a spectacular celebration: The Parade Committee and key volunteers including, chair Gwen Vuchsas, Jim Vuchsas, Sean Corrigan, Courtney & Brendan O’Donoghue, Liz Hall, Jerry Jen, Stephanie Davis, Rob Nelson, Juliet Oman, Kayla Friedman-Barb, Garrett Smith, Playa Venice Sunrise Rotarians and the Gooden Center Team. We truly appreciate your assistance! Also, a big thank you to April Hirt for getting the streets closed! Thank you to LMU for the use of the campus and setting up the bleachers. We couldn’t do this without you! And, of course, thank you to our wonderful announcers along the parade route: Jon Runkle, Geoff Maleman and Larry Israelson! Remember, if you want to stay up-to-date on the latest community news, “like” the LAX Coastal Chamber on Facebook and Instagram or visit Thank you all for coming, and we’ll see you again next year! Happy Fourth of July!

1932 LAFD Bandwagon with Mariachis Let’s hear it for the Mariachis riding on a parade favorite, the 1932 LAFD bandwagon!

Charro Horses The Chamber is pleased to welcome the Charro International de Compton to today’s parade. A charro is a skilled Mexican horseman, part of a tradition with origins in the 17th century. The charros are seen today in traditional costumes and riding their famous dancing horses.

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4th of July Parade Program

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

4th of July Parade Program

July 2018 • Page 27

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4th of July Parade Program

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Secret recipes from the Inn: Tomato Feta Dip By Rebecca Hill Summer’s here, and there are so many fun things to do in our community! First up on my social calendar is Westchester’s fantastic 4th of July parade. Don’t be surprised if you see me wipe a tear or two away as old fashioned fire trucks, rotary clubs, service groups, dance troops, floats and our local schools’ marching bands parade by. I love the vibrant pulse of Los Angeles as a whole, but there is something intensely moving, wholesome, comforting and uplifting about this small town parade. The feeling of connection and community pride is palpable and moves me to tears every time. I tried to hold it together last year but was overcome by the amazing talent of Inglewood High School’s marching band–these young people are the epitome of excellence! Next up, I’m trying to convince my co-workers to dust off their “Pink Ladies” jackets and join me for a screening of “Grease” at Playa Vista’s “Movie in the Park” on Friday, August 10. “Grease” is one of my alltime favorite films, and I am beyond excited that Playa Vista chose it as part of their summer lineup! Others in our community are excited about the summer too.

This dip works with a variety of sides including veggies, cheese, chips and bread.

Janet Zaldua of the Marina del Rey Convention & Visitors Bureau says she’s “looking forward to the awardwinning Marina del Rey Summer Concert Series at Burton Chace Park in July and August. On Thursdays it’s Symphonic music like South Pacific and Katherine McPhee and Saturdays include Pop music by artists such as Cat Power and Lalah Hathaway. The concerts are relaxing and fun. Bring

a blanket and a picnic, and you’re all set!” If you do decide to pack a picnic, you may want to make our tomato feta dip. We’ve found it’s delicious and a real crowd pleaser! Well, Happy 4th of July y’all! We hope to see you at a summer concert, a movie in the park or maybe even on the parade route!

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Tomato Feta Dip Ingredients: • 3 tablespoons butter • 1 cup chopped tomatoes • 1 1/2 cup Feta cheese • 1 TSP. garlic powder • 2 TSP. dried oregano (or Italian seasoning) Directions: 1. Cut tomatoes in small pieces (about the size of a dime). 2. Sauté tomatoes in butter. 3. Let the tomatoes simmer down for about 10 minutes. 4. Add feta cheese and spices and take off the stove. 5. Serve hot or cold with crackers or homemade bread. 6. Enjoy! Innsider tip: Play with the amount of spice; some people like more, some people like less. Consider adding a clove of garlic when you are sautéing the tomatoes in the butter for extra flavor. The Inn’s recipes have been lovingly collected over the past 20 years. Some are original recipes, others are well- known recipes that have been adapted, and some are recipes that have been handed down by our innkeeper’s mothers and grandmothers over the years. Rebecca Hill is an innkeeper at the Inn at Playa del Rey and a published writer. Her stories have appeared in Redbook magazine and in over a dozen Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies.

July 2018 • Page 29

Random Notes/Opinion Making time to exercise makes stress more manageable

By Jeff Blair

usually too tight. That wasn’t a good feeling. He tried a few diets but never stuck with them long. They made him feel deprived and left out at parties and family events. When he went off a diet, his eating seemed worse than ever. He knew his nutrition was inconsistent, but wasn’t really sure what the answer was. Every week a new study seemed to contradict last week’s study. Bob also noticed how sitting all day was impacting his body. His muscles always felt tight and sometimes his back ached. He also experienced a few minor injuries: tweaks to the knee, ankle and shoulder. They were frustrating and slowed his already inconsistent running program. Bob got married at 31 and had two kids over the next 5 years. His law practice grew. He was having financial success. Bob thought he was busy and stressed before, but the “B.K.”(before kids) era was a cakewalk by comparison. By age 40, Bob was consistently 20 pounds over his college weight. He couldn’t deny that any longer. After a routine doctor’s visit, the doctor put Bob on a statin. On one hand, Bob was doing well.

Opinion: Bob* is a lawyer and owns his own firm. He works about 55 hours per week. He takes two weeks of vacation each year. Bob was a high school athlete and ran, lifted weights and played intramural sports in college. When Bob started law school, his activity dropped, but he was still pretty active. He exercised about 3-4 times per week. His eating has never been perfect (he has a sweet tooth), but he mostly managed to keep his weight under control with exercise and by occasionally cutting back on alcohol and sweets. Once Bob finished law school, everything changed. His mostly flexible student schedule suddenly became a mostly inflexible lawyer schedule. As he developed his law practice, stress became consistent for the first time in his life. Bob still ran a couple times each week. He rarely lifted weights since he was mostly concerned about controlling his weight rather than building muscle. After law school, Bob found it harder to maintain a steady weight. He had always fluctuated 10 pounds, but now his weight consistently trended up about 10 pounds. His pants were

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His law practice was successful. He had even hired a couple of attorneys to work under him. His marriage was good. His kids were healthy and doing well in good schools. But Bob also struggled with carrying the extra weight. His work as a lawyer, business owner and now employer was very stressful. He hated the idea of being on medication at 40 although he did what his doctor said. Technically, he had time to work out but his energy was gone by the end of the day. Modern life was frankly beating him up. He wasn’t happy about that, but he knew it was real. Bob distracted himself with fantasy football and by following the Lakers and Dodgers, but he seemed further away from a healthy life more than ever. He needed to do something. He wasn’t looking to become a huge bodybuilder or a super athlete. He just wanted to get back to a comfortable weight, get off medication and increase his energy. He wasn’t looking for “hardcore.” He mostly just wanted to get moving in the right direction. One morning a thought struck him: “My career is good and my marriage and kids are good. My number one problem right now is taking care of my

body and my health. Every day that becomes more undeniable. “ Bob wasn’t sure how to solve his problem. Although he hadn’t yet experienced any serious health problems, he also understood that could become an issue at some point. He stood at a crossroads. I have seen and mentored dozens of people like Bob. They have slowly turned the tide and built a happier and healthier lifestyle. In as little as 2 hours per week, Bob can increase his energy and strength. Weight loss can come as nutrition is improved. Over time, I would encourage him to increase exercise to 3-4 hours per week. Following this blueprint, Bob can transform into a lean, healthy and happy person without sacrificing the good things in his life. This transformation won’t completely eliminate all his stress or solve all of life’s problems, but it makes everything much more manageable. *The same ideas apply to women. Before you start any fitness or nutrition plan, consult your doctor. Jeff Blair (M.S., C.S.C.S) is a fitness author, award-winning personal trainer and five time winner of Hometown News “Best Of” personal trainer. Contact him at

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

You are valuable and can make choices By Fay Craton

Opinion: Happy Birthday, America! Our founding fathers, both those who signed the Declaration of Independence and those who dedicated their lives to bring our country into existence, were dynamic, opinionated and were strong believers in the idea that people have the right to decide the content of the laws governing their own lives. While, they might not have all agreed on everything, they all believed in the right of self-direction. They purposely lived lives of meaning, forged significant relationships and, although they understood personal value, they also shared a commitment to a purpose greater than the individual person. In modern times it is easy for our eyes to glaze over and our minds to wander when ideas of living lives of meaning, purpose, self-direction and commitment are placed in front of us. Our lives are so busy with day-to-day activities, often doing things others want us to do, working in order to get a paycheck or hanging out with friends so life doesn’t feel so lonely. In all the activity of living, are you thriving? Can you say you are content? Are you enjoying or satisfied with your life? Do you have meaning in your life? For many people, unfortunately, the answer is “no.” To thrive in life it may be important to have a role model. It can be helpful to look at the words and behaviors

of someone who has accomplished something of meaning. On our nation’s birthday, let’s look at the people who gave of themselves so that the United States could be formed. In my imagination, I see the founding fathers looking at conditions which were unacceptable. Picking up a cell phone to text dissatisfaction was not possible. Nor could they get onto a plane to visit people with whom they needed to form collaborations. They had to write letters which were sent slowly by messenger on horseback or in a ship. If the people in power had discovered these letters, the founding fathers could have been considered criminals and punished by torture and death. These were men fully committed, placing their lives and fortunes on the line, to make a difference in how the land they called home was governed. Their purpose was not tied to what other people thought of them. It is very different in today’s world in which we turn on our cell, tablet or TV and get colorful bits of information about how what you own or how you look will make you happy. The message in these “sound bites” is often that your worth is tied to having possessions better than others and/or having power over other people. If you are not worthy, you are not good enough. The pain of feeling inadequate may lead to the belief you are not “good enough.” Inside you may begin to feel alone and hollow. Many people, today, are seeking

ways to fill emptiness. This feeling of being worthless often leads to damaged relationships, misuse of substances, food disorders, gambling or other addictions. Reacting to life from our hurts results in a life without meaning. Internal wounds often keep people from connecting with parts of themselves which can guide them to a sense of value. Meaning, self-worth, and connection to a purpose “greater than you” are important components to thriving. The signers of the Declaration of Independence were not perfect people, however, they are good models for living lives which make a difference in our world. Our founding fathers risked their lives and prosperity because they believed in the right of self-direction. Some of the signers lost their lives during the birth of the nation. Others willingly gave up their homes and financial security in their commitment to a higher purpose. We honor them on our nation’s birthday because through their efforts, the course of history changed and our government, which includes a component of self-direction, came into being. Perhaps you know people living today who are also good role models. Think about people who give their time and resources to make a positive difference. You might know someone who you can ask to mentor you in using your skills to improve your life. Embracing the concept of self-

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

direction includes the idea that you are worthy. People should not be oppressed. When you are oppressed, options which could be available to you are not possible. This means you may not be able to make a healthy choice. Oppression can come in many forms. In can come from a form of government. It can also come from dominant thinking within a community, such as ideas about what constitutes a “person of worth.” Self-direction is not about possessions, power or influence, it is about the right to choose. The founding fathers had a clear sense of purpose, which they valued over life or personal belongings. I want you to know within you is a unique, intelligent and precious being. My wish is for you to experience the value you bring to this world. Each day, you have opportunities to choose what you wish to say and how you decide to behave. You have the right of self-direction. Perhaps, one way to bring value into this world is making Independence Day about sharing from your heart an act of kindness towards another person who is struggling with his or her sense of self-worth. Fay Craton, M.A. is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (mfc40011), which is the psychology license specializing in relationships (with ourselves or with others) and she has an office in Westchester. For more info, visit or contact her at (310) 645-6762.

July 2018 • Page 31

Business & Nonprofit News

Otis College of Art & Design instructors and alumni pose in front of “Alternative Transportation” by Charlie Kendall, one of 10 alumni works that will be featured throughout LAX terminals. The artwork will be showcased thanks to a new partnership between LAWA and Otis designed to increase art at the airport and celebrate Otis’ 100th anniversary.

New Westchester Mural pays tribute to community. Otis instructor, David Russell, in a collaboration with Karen Dial of Drollinger Properties, is busy transforming the Westchester Business District with colorful murals that pay homage to the community. Russell, who painted the 5-story mural on the Drollinger Office Building (located on the north west corner of Sepulveda and Westchester Parkway), recently completed a new mural on the wall of Spring Cleaners. The mural, which is located facing the parking lot at 8636 S. Sepulveda Blvd., features three panels. According to Russell, the first panel represents a day scene of Sepulveda, with the Loyola Theater and the San Gabriel Mountains in the background. The two lanes of cars represent Sepulveda as a busy thoroughfare in and out of LAX. The middle panel features an abstract bird negotiating its natural habitat, as the city continues to expand. For the last panel picturing Sepulveda at night, Russell gave a nod to Westchester High School and Spring Cleaners’ owner, Issa Gharibeh, an alumni of the school. Comets are the school’s mascot and a sign-post marking Sepulveda and “61st” is a tribute to Gharibeh’s high school football number. He was on the team in 1988 when Westchester High had its only championship season. The mural was completed with help from students from Russell’s Murals and Civic Engagement in the Public Realm class, which he teaches at Otis. Both Dial and Russell are working Page 32 • July 2018

Otis Instructor and mural artist, David Russell, poses in front of his latest creation with Drollinger Properties President, Karen Dial. The two have teamed up to bring more art to Westchester.

on bringing more murals and artwork to the community, and they even hope to transform a bland corridor between storefronts along Sepulveda into a “mural alley.” “It is one of my passions to bring more public art and beauty to Westchester,” said Dial. “It’s all about cultural development and partnering with David has opened that up. We’re going to keep adding new artwork, so stay tuned!” 100percentLA Campaign showcases Otis alumni artwork at LAX. Westchester’s Otis College of Art and Design is turning 100 on September 30, and the college is kicking-off a number of community collaborations to help celebrate its centennial. One of these

first partnerships is with Los Angeles World Airports, which recently held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to unveil artwork from 2018 Otis graduates. The artwork, located in terminals throughout LAX, is part of the airport’s “100percentLA” campaign, designed to use art to highlight Los Angeles’ unique aesthetic and encourage visitors to take photos to post on social media. “LAX is excited to partner with Otis College of Art and Design for the ‘100percentLA’ campaign, which highlights the creativity and vibrancy of our city as seen through the eyes of young local artists and designers,” said Keith Wilschetz, Deputy Executive Director for Emergency Management and Operations at LAX. “These exciting works of art, which will be installed throughout

our LAX terminals this summer, help create a uniquely L.A. experience for our guests and provide an opportunity for them to engage in the campaign and share their own LA stories.” The “100percentLA” campaign currently features “Paradise” by Alice Hur, “Journey” by Zehan Sheng and “Alternative Transportation” by Charlie Kendall, all located in Terminal 6. Additional artwork will be unveiled throughout the summer for guests to take pictures with and post on social media with hashtags: #100percentLA, #FlyLAX and #OtisCollege. “It’s really exciting to work at Otis and be able to see art and design every day. Now to be able to bring that out into the world, the travelers are going to be able to experience what I get to do and get to see every day--it’s really exciting,” said Otis’ Vice President of Communications and Marketing Jeffrey Perkins. “This project will help bring our recent graduates artwork to even more people.” Marina del Rey Boat Parade asks for community’s help to pick theme. Marina del Rey Boat Parade organizers are holding a contest to choose the theme for their 56th annual event. Those interested can submit their ideas to mdrboatparade@gmail. com by July 31, and the person with the winning theme will receive an invitation to the pre-parade VIP party, a gift card and swag bag. The Marina del Rey Boat Parade is scheduled for Saturday, December 8. For more info, visit

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Photo by Angela Clouse.

The 2018 LAX Coastal Chamber board, led by Ryan Gales (center), poses on the roof-top deck of the Marina del Rey Marriott during the Installation Gala in June.

Local businesses recognized at Installation Gala. Supervisor Janice Hahn and hundreds of local business leaders celebrated the installation of longtime Playa del Rey resident and CEO of Jenkins, Gales & Martinez, Ryan Gales, as the new chair of the LAX Coastal Chamber at the organization’s Installation Gala. The June 15 event, held at the Marina del Rey Marriott, also recognized outgoing chair and General Manager of the Inn at Playa del Rey, Liz Hall, for her work in helping lead the organization over the past 12-months, in its most successful year to date. At the gala, more than a dozen businesses were recognized with

awards for being an integral part of the success of the chamber, including: • Distinguished Partner, Southwest Airlines • Outstanding Small Business, Benny’s Tacos & Chicken Rotisserie • Volunteer of the Year, Robert Montjoy, Montjoy Enterprises • Helmsman Leadership Award, Jane St. John, RE/MAX Estate Properties • Honorary Mayor’s Award, Miki Payne, Drollinger Properties For more info on the chamber, please visit Have something to celebrate? We want to hear about your business or nonprofit! Email us at


5 Minutes 5 Bucks FREE AIRGUNS






125 N. Pacific Coast Hwy., El Segundo (1 Mile South of LAX, between Grand Ave. and El Segundo Blvd.)

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

July 2018 • Page 33

Annenberg PetSpace Annenberg PetSpace Annenberg PetSpace

One Year One Year Anniversary Celebration One Year Anniversary Anniversary

Celebration Celebration

O Animal enthusiasts and their four-legged friends flocked to the Wallis Annenberg PetSpace on Sunday, June 24 to celebrate the organization’s one year anniversary or anniFURsary. PetSpace, located in Playa Vista, is a multi-use community space that combines pet adoption,

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educational workshops and training in an interactive and family-friendly environment. Created to help strengthen the human-animal bond, the center has dogs, cats and rabbits available for adoption that are housed in adoption suites that help people seamlessly connect with their future

pets. Adoption fees are only $80. During the event, guests were treated to performances from talented canines, free food trucks, behind-thescenes tours and the opportunity to meet adoptable pets waiting for their “furever” homes. PetSpace is open to the public

Wednesday through Sunday, and regularly hosts free special events, talks and educational workshops. For more info about PetSpace’s programs or adopting a pet, please visit PetSpace is located at 12005 Bluff Creek Dr. in Playa Vista.

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

July 2018 • Page 35

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Westchester • Playa del Rey • Marina del Rey • Playa Vista HomeTown News

Westchester/Playa HomeTown News July 2018 edition  

Please enjoy the July 2018 edition of the Westchester/Playa HomeTown News.

Westchester/Playa HomeTown News July 2018 edition  

Please enjoy the July 2018 edition of the Westchester/Playa HomeTown News.