Last Saturday’s “10 Bridges Ride” was chockfulla awesome and graduated another exceptional batch of riders into that realm of rare angelenos who’ve purposefully pedaled across all the spans over the LA River between Chinatown and Vernon for the fun and history of it (my woefully lacking Flickr set is here, my friend Kay’s much better one is here.).
For our next trek, this Saturday you’re invited to saddle up with me and venture south for what will be the fourth edition of the famed “Watts Happening Ride,” which will chart a course from Silver Lake to the awe-inspiring towers of Simon Rodia and back, with a food stop scheduled afterward at King Taco on Washington Boulevard.
Along the way to and from the Watts Towers we’ll see and hear about:
- The childhood home of Nobel Peace Prize winner Ralph Bunche
- The historic Central Avenue Jazz Quarter and its focal point the Dunbar Hotel
- Black Panther Party’s LA headquarters, site of the infamous five-hour shootout between LAPD and members in 1969
- The location of the 1974 SLA/LAPD shootout
- The location of the arrest of Marquette Frye that sparked the 1965 Watts Riots
- The home of Eula Love (who?)
- The baseball field Wrigley built before he built Wrigley Field
Same as last week the ride will gather in the parking lot of SilverSun Plaza on the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Parkman Avenue, departing at 10 a.m. State budget cuts have left it unclear if the Watts Towers will actually be open and available for tours, but if they are and you want to get up close to the landmark bring $7. If I had to guess, I’d say the total casually paced ride time will be in the neighborhood of five to six hours. If schedule or stamina doesn’t permit you doing the entire roundtrip, at least think about riding halfway (about 13 miles) with us down to the towers where you can then return downtown via the Blue Line’s nearby 103rd Street station.