First up…Chevy’s Volt took the green car of the year award in a ceremony held Thursday Morning. Later I got to drive it and was impressed. Smoother ride, smoother transition back and forth between EV and gas mode, with much more time in pure EV mode than the prior version. Add in a much more refined, high end materials and fit in finish inside this car is nothing like its hard edged predecessor. I can see easily why it won “Green Car of the Year” for its technilogical and creature comfort advancements. Nice job Chevy.
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We know little of this car other than an entry on the schedule of premieres during Press Days of the L.A. Auto Show coming up in 2 short weeks. Elio is a new car company the P5 is their debut car. Little is known. Rumors abound. Its a 3 wheel car, .9liter 3 cylnder, 80+mpg, 0-60 in under 10 seconds, top speed over 100. This is either going to be the greatest thing since the Tesla to make us change how we think about cars or will will be another blip on the radar that we snicker over like the Dale. I fear the latter as with “cheap” gas again and a resurgance of guzzing SUV sales and falling hybrid sales, but we’ll see. It may just wow us.
The L. A. Auto Show is open to the public 11/20-29 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Buy your tickets now and avoid the lines at the ticket booths. While there judge for yourself if the Elio Motors P5 is the future or a blip.
Sometimes magic happens on stage. This time around it hit home at Sierra Madre Playhouse with the production of “Always…Patsy Cline”. The cast was magical and I was tickeled beyond belief to been on the sidelines watching the cast grow into their characters and bring this production to life. Some 4000 people from all over the L.A Metro and OC saw the play. You can scroll through for my review from the soft opening.
Actors Cori Cable Kidder (Patsy Cline) and Nikki D’Amico (Louise Seger) gave heartfelt thanks at the end of the show. Artistic Director Christian Lebano and Managing Director, Estelle Campbell also chimed in with their thoughts on the play. Enjoy their closing comments and consider visiting the Sierra Madre Playhouse for their next production opening later this month, A Christmas Memory.
This weekend was a terrifc weekend, if you forget the blazing heat and attended the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts 52nd Annual Celebrate the Arts and first ever ChalkFest.
Celebrate the Arts incorporated several first as I outlined the other day. What makes these events fun isn’t so much the terrific art, but the ability to see artists working on their art, demonstrating their technique. There year there were several artists doing just that. Glass blower Joshua Smilth wowed folks with his tecnhique. Metal sculpturist Bill Hyatt continued working on his horse head sculpture a painstaking process of welding dot by dot to build up the face and texture of the horse.
To learn more about ChalkFest and see those artists in their creative zone you need to make the jump. Read the rest of this entry →
This is a biggy for me. Something that I, as a board member, have been all but consumed with the last several weeks. Celebrate the Arts is in its 52nd year and its going to have quite a few firsts on top of the already terrific fine artists populating the park with their art.
Celebrate the Arts is held in Monrovia’s Library Park from 10AM – 6PM both Saturday and Sunday this weekend. There will be a lot of firsts at this show that we are really excited about on top of our usual host of Food Trucks, live music, extremely talented artists. Among our firsts this event:
- ChalkFest – a competitive street art event with Lori Escalera as our celebrity judge.
- Children’s Chalk Experience -designed for the 12 and under set to experiment with chalk
- Featured Artist Elizabeth Butterfield…her collage work is simply stunning
- The first appearance by students from Mt. Sierra College (11 fine artists and 2 chalk artists)
- The first appearance by 18 artists new to MAFA
- Glass Blowing demonstrations
- TIKI Bobbleheads from artist Rick Kess
- Authors exhibition with live book signing
- Photographer Author Stephen McCarthy will be selling his images, autographing his books including his newest “The Extra Virgin Spy Club”
To read more about this years Celebrate the Arts you need to make the jump. Read the rest of this entry →
Only 25 examples of this car will be hand crafted. Its Los Angeles showing will be at the Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance on September 20. (Full details on the car after the jump).
The Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance is one of my most favorite shows in all of Southern California. IT IS without a doubt the best curated show out there and you can’t go wrong with the location –
General Parking for Concours d’Elegance
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2015
- General Parking is Free
- Location: Promenade Shopping Center & Peninsula Center – Rolling Hills Estates
- See map, below for parking entrances
- Shuttle access is at the Peninsula Center parking area.
We are happy to be able to provide FREE general parking for this year’s Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance through the generosity of Promenade on the Peninsula and Peninsula Shopping Center. Constantly running buses, courtesy of L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe, will shuttle you to and from the Concours venue—about a 7 minute drive.
From either Hawthorne or Crenshaw Blvds., turn onto Indian Peak Road.
- Signage will direct you to parking entrances
- Volunteers will help guide you to a parking spot.
At Promenade on the Peninsula parking structure:
- Please use ONLY the parking entrance next to the Norris Theater.
- Please do not use any other parking entrance for Concours parking. These areas are reserved for shopping center patrons. Be courteous.
- After parking, walk across the street to Peninsula Shopping Center to board the Shuttle.
A detective loses his Dodge Patrol car with a hemi and cries…
I could add a few more snarks, but bottom line a few electric cars in the LAPD make sense in the right applications. No I can’t imagine them used in a high speed pursuit, but contrary to local TV that is not a constant occurrence. There’s plenty of things they do that involves just slogging around town and idling in traffic that an electric car and its zero emissions at the tail pipe make sense. Detectives cold calling witnesses and victims on follow up doesn’t need speed nor lights flaring. Parking meter slugs idling around town issuing tickets is another area that kinda makes sense.
Regardless of what you think of the EV, they make sense in some applications and if we can save some gas money swapped for electrons cheaper off the grid to power these little beasts its better for the cities bottom line.
Personally, I like the BMW i3, Drives very much like what you expect from BMW, with its aggressive regeneratvie braking systems a quick lift of the throttle feels more like downshifting a gasser than just idle coasting. My full review from a few years ago HERE that included an interview with the BMW i project manager.
Free subscription to blogging.la for the first person who captures a pic of the BMW i3 in action on the streets of L.A.
Every now and then I get stuff in my inbox thats just too cool not to share. This infographic from Sparefoot shows just how freaking BIG Griffith Park is compared to other cities of the world. At over 4000 acres its one of the biggest city park in the world. No one else comes close, heck its even larger than some national parks. But I digress, when Brian Shreckengast of Sparefoot reached out and asked if I would be interested in sharing with all of you the answer was an emphatic YES!
Click to embiggen the pic to the right to get the whole effect. Using some special mapping software Brian mapped the outlines of Griffith Park and then used that map to superimpose it over some of the worlds cities to show just how big and special Griffith Park is. Massive is an understatement. The full story on how they did it and larger maps can be seen on their WEB SITE.
I have always loved this park. When I was a valley dweller, Valley Village to be precise, this was my go to place to hike, walk, or just clear my head. I miss the road that once was open from the observatory to Travel Town as it gave excellent spots to stop and and soak in the city sights and vistas. But thats been closed at least 20 years at this point and I doubt they’ll reopen which is sad as it makes so much of the park out of reach for a quick walk on the trails.
What’s your favorite spot in the park?
Image courtesy Brian Shreckengast of Sparefoot and used with permission.
This is going to be an awesomely fun evening. Sierra Madre Playhouse and Vroman’s Books in Hasting Ranch have teamed up to bring the cast and crew from their soon to open “Always…Patsy Cline” production down the hill for a listening party. Listen to such classics as Crazy, Walking After Midnight, and I Fall To Pieces.
Learn about the singing techniques Patsy used to evoke the heartbreak and longing that have made her songs country and pop classics. Presented in tandem with the production of Always… Patsy Cline at The Sierra Madre Playhouse, playing July 31 – September 12, 2015.
I know this shopping center well. Parking is always tight and you can idle forever waiting for a spot to open. I’d suggest if you are mass transit enabled take the Gold Line to the Sierra Madre Station and walk the 4 blocks east to Vroman’s or grab an ARTS shuttle or Foothill Transit 187 “murder bus” to the center. Much easier and less stressful than dealing with tight parking.
Deets: The Patsy Cline Listening Party will take place at Vroman’s Hastings Ranch store at 3729 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107 on Friday, July 17, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. Free event. MAP HERE.
Monrovia Association of Fine Arts (MAFA) is adding a Chalk Art Festival to its already established Celebrate the Arts. The show will be held September 26 and 27 with the Chalk Art produced and judged on the 26th. Celebrate the Arts is excited about this, its 52nd annual event in Library Park in historic Old Town Monrovia.
Prizes, yes there will be prizes that are funded by your nominal entry fee and by generous sponsors in the area.
- $500 First Place Advantage Ford Lincoln (Just announced)
- $250 Second Place Monrovia Merchants
- $100 Third Place Brian Huffman Photography
- All Prize winners will also receive an 8X10 photograph of their work by Brian Huffman Photography
If you’d like to join please write me direct [email protected] and I’ll send you an application with the full details. Unlike some other festivals we like to think of ours as the friendlier, more fun Chalk Art Festival in the SGV. Yes, there are some requirements. Entry fee of $25 but that also makes you a member of MAFA. Subject matter is wide open, but because the Celebrate the Arts is a community family oriented venture so you can’t include pornographic or erotic themes and content. You need to apply early as space is limited and spaces are assigned on a first come, first served basis. As Celebrate the Arts is MAFA’s big fund raiser for the year we ask that you create a small piece of art on a 12″X12″ canvas to be included in our silent auction.
Disclosure…I’m a Board Member and Jury Chairman for the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts. I donate way too much time according to my wife as I firmly believe in their mission statement: “Enhance the lives of those within our community through interaction with the arts. Increase the opportunities of our children through art education.”. And do “like” us on Facebook.
Edit 1:57 PM our First Prize sponsor has been signed on and announced.
Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple” opened at the Sierra Madre Playhouse and it was a riotous good time. The play we know, but Alan Brooks and Artistic Director Christian Lebano twisted it up a notch and made this so much more than the bare words on the script. I can’t find a fault in the production, and neither could the audience that laughed pretty much non-stop during this examination of interpersonal relationships among friends and differing personalities.
Where to start, by now we all know the story. Oscar Madison’s wife and kids leave him and move away leaving him to grunge up an 8 room apartment. Shortly thereafter Felix Unger’s wife boots him and he shows up on Oscar’s doorstep with no place to live. Jack Sundmacher as Oscar and Brad David Reed as Felix have terrific chemistry and brought their characters to life. Even in Oscar’s most curmudgeonly moments you felt connected to him and understood him. Felix is just a nutball basket case and he too wound up capturing your heart. His sinus-clearing-ear-unplugging bit was hysterical.
As I mentioned in an earlier post the poker table, played by Richard Van Slyke, Joe Langer, Steve Bean and Vince Donvito had chemistry. It was really as funny as watching a group of guys who’ve been been playing for years, not actors who just recently met. Funny, caring, wise-cracking and FUNNY. You couldn’t help but wish you were in their circle at the table playing poker as well.
The absolute bit of genius was switching up the roles of the “Pigeon Sisters”, the dating interest and neighbors of Oscar and Felix. Played by Kari Lee and Jane Lui was a piece of sheer casting genius. The chemistry and infectious zest for living they brought to the stage really brought the play to life. Typically the two rolls are just simply cast to a couple of blonde bimbos and let the chips fall where they may, these two brought the characters of Gwendolyn and Ceciy to hyper animated life. Between the two of them they capture Felix’s heart and convince him he’s going to be ok. They even twist Oscar around to see Felix for the friend he is. Quite a task and brilliantly played by Ms Lee and Ms Lui.
Don’t forget the contest for “my worst roommate” that runs until May 31. Send the Playhouse your worst roommate story and if chosen you get dinner with this incredible cast! ENTER HERE, or simply mail your story to [email protected]
The play runs through June 27, Order tickets HERE.
DEETS: Sierra Madre Playhouse 87 W Sierra Madre Blvd. Sierra Madre CA 91024 MAP HERE Box Office 626/355-4318
All pics by me.
I remember watching Dr. George and his signature bow-tie on television until he retired from ABC and enjoyed his re-emergence KCBS in the mid-to-late 1990s.
For many Angelenos, Dr. George was more than just the weatherman. He taught us about jet streams, high and low pressures and millibars. When he was giving us his forecast for the highs and lows for the next day, he’d also remind us to be good citizens and take care of each other.
He was also an ambassador of good will both on and off the set. For years, he collected toys for children at Porterville State Hospital.
Years after he retired, he gave his support to ABC7’s Spark of Love Toy Drive.