Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

“Walk in No Shoes” Charity Event set for 4/7/2103 in Woodley Park.

March 8, 2013 at 1:41 pm in Events, Politics, Social issues, The Valley

Yes, I know that this post for a  charity event is early, but registration is now open and there is a discounted admission if you enroll to help by March 15, 2013.  Walk in No Shoes is a charity walk run event to benefit the poor and persecuted in  South Sudan.  The event funds will go to the Sudan Relief Fund to help them raise awareness, generate funds and support relief efforts that provide food, safe drinking water, clothing, shelter, medical attention, education and hope to the people of the region regardless of nationality, religion, ethnicity or what tribe they belong to.  You can get more information on the Sudan Relief Fund HERE.

The event will take place in Woodley Park.  The event will have 3 different categories of  running/walking.  There will be a 10K walk/run, a 5K walk/run and a 1K barefoot walk.  The latter is a sort of kinship exercise as the Sudanese often walk miles barefoot for water, food and medical attention.  There is a fee to enter these raises that will generate the funds.  The fees range from $25-45, and go up after 3/15 to $25-55.    There are also opportunities to volunteer to help them that day.  All the information you could want on the event can be found on their web site HERE.  These donations are tax deductible as the fund is a 501 c(3) charitable organization.

Deets: Sunday, April 7, 2013 8:00am to 1:00PM, Woodley Park / Lake Balboa 6350 Woodley Ave., Van Nuys CA MAP HERE


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

Drive Carbon Free for 2 years with a New Car

March 8, 2013 at 7:41 am in Driving, environment, Events, News, Social issues, Transportation

No, I’m not talking a short term lease on an electric car, its on a gasser.  Suburban Simi Valley Ford is buying carbon offsets on any new car/truck you buy from them now through Earth Day (April 22, 2013).  They will purchase a 2 year carbon offset in your name from Carbonfund.org who in turn sends you a certificate for this purchase.

I talked with Mike Shell the leasing manager at Simi Valley Ford yesterday getting details on this program.  SVF is doing this because they want to leave a legacy and be a leader in helping to bring about an end to climate change.  So far since the Drive to Save the Environment Campaign started they have offset 1 Million, yes 1,000,000 pounds of carbon going into the air.  They hope that other dealers, including other brands will follow suit with this project in coming years. Read the rest of this entry →


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

Irish Fair and Music Festival at Fairplex this weekend.

March 7, 2013 at 7:40 am in Entertainment, Events, Music, Shopping

With St Patty’s right around the corner its time for the annual Irish Fair and Music Festival at the Pomona Fairplex.  The event includes food, bands, storytellers, dancers, variety (whatever that is) and demonstrations.  The Irish Fair runs March 9 & 10th 2013, 10AM – 6PM.

This isn’t free and a complete breakdown of the admission for the event can be found on their web site HERE.  You can purchase tickets HERE.

All the details about the Festival that you could ever want are on their site HERE.  Just in case you don’t know how to make out to the nether regions of L.A for the event the MAP IS HERE.


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

626 Night Market returns this summer in Arcadia

March 6, 2013 at 12:11 pm in Art, Crafts, Entertainment, Events, Food & Drink, San Gabriel Valley, Seasonal, Shopping

Yup, it was such a success last time around at Santa Anita Park they are returning this summer.  If you made it to the Pasadena locations last year you were probably put off by the density of the crowds and difficulties with parking and stuff.  The move to Santa Anita Park alleviated those obstacles and made the event really fun.  Of course, if you made the ones after the move to Santa Anita you are well aware of how much fun the place was.

The folks at 626 Night Market are so happy with the change of venue they are looking to increase their crowds.  They are having a contest on facebook and are giving away 5 passes to each of the 10 winners.  To enter all you gotta do is like their page and share it with your friends.

626 Night Market is also looking for artists, food trucks and other vendors to pack the place with and add to the fun and enjoyment.  If you are interested visit their web page HERE.  Yes, the prices seem steep, but it includes your canopy, lights, outlets and most importantly your permits.

I’ll post more on the dates as we get closer to the event.  If you want more deets visit the main 626 Night Market site when you have time.


‘Paperman’ Producer Kicked Out of Oscars for Throwing Paper Airplanes

February 26, 2013 at 3:31 am in Entertainment, Hollywood, LA, Movies, People

Congratulations go out to Kristina Reed, also known as wife of long-time blogging.LA’s Mack Reed not (just) for producing the Academy Award-winning Animated Short Paperman, but for getting kicked out of (and getting let back into) the 2013 Oscars.

According to The Hollywood Reporter:

After Disney’s Paperman won the Academy Award for best animated short Sunday, producer Kristina Reed began throwing paper airplanes, about three or four — with kisses on them, like the ones seen in the film — from her seat in the mezzanine.

The paper planes were nowhere near the stage, instead shooting straight down from the balcony. It went largely unnoticed by the crowd, but security didn’t think the act was very sweet, kicking her out of the Dolby Theatre auditorium.

It would turn out to be temporary. After a short protest, security brought her back to her seat about five to 10 minutes later.

The story has been picked up by Gawker, HuffPo, ABC, MSN, and more.

(Photo lifted from Mack’s Facebook feed… thanks, Mack!)


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

Help a 15-19 year old driver not have a critical accident with #DSFL

February 23, 2013 at 8:16 am in Driving, Events, Social issues, Transportation

Having survived one teen driver I’m getting ready to add another soon. The biggest fear for a parent is what if the kid makes a critical mistake driving that hurts themselves or someone else. Only so much a parent can do alone.  There are a lot of resources a parent can access to help them keep their kids out of harms way and DSFL-Driving Skills For Life is one such resource.

The program will be in L.A next weekend, March 2nd and 3rd at the Hollywood Park race track.  All the details you could want are HERE on the DSFL web site.  You can register your 15-19 year old HERE.

As if the links don’t answer all of your questions you can read the press release after the jump. Read the rest of this entry →


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

A little vintage Valley for the morning

February 23, 2013 at 8:00 am in Driving, Movies, The Valley

I can’t take credit for finding this, spotted on facebook on a friend of a friends liking it chain of posts.  None the less it is a great view of Burbank to Toluca Lake in 1958.  Isn’t that sound track something else?  The turds at the Getty images won’t allow embedding, but you can view it HERE.


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

4 Local Bands make it to the 2014 Rose Parade

February 22, 2013 at 11:23 am in Entertainment, Events, News, Seasonal, Which Side?

Just got the press release.  Congrats to the 4 local marching bands that made it into the 2014 Tournament of Roses Parade.

They are:
Glendora Tartan Band and Pageantry, Glendora
Los Angeles Unified School District All District High School Honor Band, Los Angeles
Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band & Herald Trumpets, Pasadena
The Salvation Army Tournament of Roses Band

 


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

Metro cans more carpool lanes for Lexus Lanes – SGV hit this time around

February 22, 2013 at 8:00 am in Driving, Law, Law Enforcement, News, San Gabriel Valley, Transportation

lexus lane transponder

Yup, as I mentioned in a post a while back, the HOV to HOT lane conversion is coming to me in the San Gabriel Valley.  The 10 from Alameda/Union Station to the 605 will be the affected area.  The change becomes effective 2-23-2013 at 12:01AM.

The transponders aren’t cheap, and then again using the lanes isn’t cheap if you are not in a carpool either.  Yes, you are required to have a transponder in your car if you use the lane.  There is no $3.00 service fee charged if you use it at least 3 times a month.

Metro is so “convinced” you will love it they are running a contest that ends today to get you to sign up.  Enter HERE.

AAA offers discounts on the transponders if you purchase it through them. This deal is open only to AAA members. The offer is as follows: Receive 20% off the initial pre-paid toll deposit of $40. AAA members will pay $32 for $40 worth of toll credits. Maximum discount is $8 per new account set-up.

My question is why hasn’t the 10 from DTLA to SaMo or the 405 from say the 101 to the 10 not been hit with the Lexus Lanes as well?  Certainly they are as congested as bad or worse than the freeways chosen so far.


Profile photo of frazgo

by frazgo

Fund Raiser for families of fallen officers due to ex-LAPD Dorner shootings

February 21, 2013 at 9:03 am in Crime, Food & Drink, Law Enforcement, Social issues

CPK voucher

Hat tip to my friends at Arcadia PD  for this tip regarding a fund raiser for the fallen officers due to shoot outs or outright assassination by Chris Dorner last week.   (You remember Chris Dorner, the ex-LAPD officer on a bizarre vendetta to prove he was wrongfully terminated by LAPD )

20% of your total bill will be donated to the respective police associations for Officer Crain and Detective McKay who wound up dying as a result of shooting by McKay.

To participate all you need to do is print out the flyer to the right of this post and present it to your server at the time you order at California Pizza Kitchen February 25-28 2013.


Elisa Lam: Body of Missing Canadian Tourist Discovered in Downtown Hotel Water Tank

February 21, 2013 at 2:56 am in Downtown, LA, News, Obituaries, People


The body of missing Canadian tourist, Elisa Lam of Vancouver, British Columbia, was found in the water tank of the Cecil Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. Lam had traveled to California by herself on January 27, en route to Santa Cruz, and was last seen by workers at the hotel on January 31.

Although Lam was scheduled to check out of the hotel on February 1, she had disappeared, despite being in daily contact with her family up until this point. By February 6, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) had released details about the suspicious disappearance of Lam and on February 7, a press conference was held about the case.

A week later, on February 14, the LAPD released a disturbing surveillance video of the 21 year old University of British Columbia (UBC) student darting in and out of the hotel’s elevators.

Earlier this week, on February 19, guests at the Cecil Hotel complain about low water pressure and a worker checks the hotel’s water tanks and discovers Lam’s body. Guests staying at the hotel had likely been bathing, brushing their teeth and drinking water from a tank in which Lam’s body had been likely decomposing for more than two weeks.

Photo courtesy: LAPD


George Tetsuo Aratani, Nisei Entrepreneur and Philanthropist, Passes Away at Age 95

February 20, 2013 at 12:55 am in Downtown, LA, Obituaries, People

George Aratani, a survivor of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, and later successful businessman and philanthropist who founded Mikasa and Kenwood, passed away Tuesday, February 19, 2013 at the age of 95.

His legacy in philanthropy through The Aratani Foundation has supported many Japanese American organizations, but especially in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo. One literally cannot walk a block in Little Tokyo without passing by a space endowed by George and Sakaye Aratani: Japanese American Cultural and Community Center’s Aratani Japan America Theatre; the Japanese American National Museum’s George and Sakaye Central Hall; and the Union Center for the Arts’s Aratani Courtyard.

From The Nisei Week Foundation Facebook page:

The Nisei Week Foundation mourns the passing of George Aratani who passed away peacefully today [Tuesday, February 19, 2013].

Aratani successfully launched post-World War II international trade enterprises. His first was Mikasa, a tableware company which was doing $400 million in annual sales when it was sold in 2000.

Influenced by his late father and motivated by the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, Aratani and his wife Sakaye have donated a sizable amount of their wealth to Japanese American organizations and causes.

For More Information:
Hirahara, Naomi. An American Son: The Story of George Aratani, Founder of Mikasa and Kenwood. Los Angeles, CA: Japanese American National Museum, 2001.

Photo credit: CalPoly Pomona, The George and Sakaye Aratani Japanese Garden


This Is The Hollenbeck Burrito

February 14, 2013 at 9:11 am in East Side, Food & Drink, LA, News, People

The quarter seen next to the plate is for scale. The Hollenbeck Burrito is the creation of a singular master by the name of Manuel Rojas who owned the famed Manuel’s Original El Tepeyac Cafe in Boyle Heights. But the Hollenbeck is hardly the largest burrito he makes — or I should say made, since sad news came yesterday that Señor Rojas has died at the age of 79 after a half-century of  serving them up.

That distinction belongs to any variety of Manuel’s Special burritos, each of which roughly calculates out to being about 250 cubic inches of gut-busting deliciousness (here’s an example with the unknown patron exhibiting the appropriate level of shock and awe). Simply laying my eyes on such massiveness the one and only time I ordered a Manuel’s Special was almost enough to stave off my worst hunger pangs. Since then, it’s been Hollenbecks for me and they’re pleeeeeenty! But if the previously mentioned dimensional quantification is hard to wrap your head around, try this alternative: it weighs in at five pounds.

I’m having trouble wrapping my head around Rojas no longer overseeing the construction of his classics, but I take solace that they live on, and I will most certainly be paying a visit in the near future to honor him by digging into one — and taking the inevitable leftovers home.


Profile photo of Jeff

by Jeff

Chinese Air Pollution Reaches Los Angeles

January 28, 2013 at 9:15 pm in environment, Science

This article was originally published at 8Asians.com and has been reposted here with permission.

While smog is yet one of the many problems afflicting Los Angeles, this blog entry points out that some of LA’s famous air pollution comes all the way from China.   According to this report, some days have a third of the air over San Francisco and Los Angeles coming from Asia, and along with it, up to three fourths of black carbon particulate air pollution, among other pollutants.  Just how does Chinese pollution get to the US?  Is it just the fault of the Chinese?

Some of this pollution begins as naturally occurring dust plumes from the Gobi desert, whipped up by storms every spring and summer.  As the dust travels west, it picks ups pollutants as it travels through heavily industrialized parts of China.  Those pollutants include the end products of coal burning, a common source of power in China.

While the US may complain about the pollution, it does contribute to the problem.  Various loopholes and subsidies are driving up the export of coal from the US and Canada to China, which gets burned and exported back through the atmosphere.   The US demand also drives production in some of those Chinese factories.

To me this shows how much the world is shrinking – what happens in one part of the world can unintentionally affect other parts.  Our atmosphere is something we all share.  While Beijing’s “airpocalypse” may seem far away, it really isn’t.  Not only can that pollution reach my family and me here in the Bay Area, but conditions were not much different here some 50 to 60 years ago.

(Photo Credit: Norman Kuring, SeaWiFS Project, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center)


Kylan Arianna Wenzel Is First Transgender Woman Allowed To Compete In Miss California Pageant

January 12, 2013 at 1:00 pm in People

Regardless of the outcome of the 2013 Miss California USA pageant, when Kylan Arianna Wenzel takes the stage at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium representing Century City, she will make history as the first transgender woman to compete in the U.S. pageant since a rule change in 2012 allowed transgender competitors. In order to compete in this year’s pageant, Kylan moved up her gender reassignment surgery my six months, quit her job, and has been preparing for the pageant.

According to her webpage:

Kylan Arianna Wenzel was born on October 14, 1986 in Daegu, South Korea. She was born to a German-American father, and a South Korean mother. She has a twin brother, and was primarily raised by her father and step-mother.

At the age of 2, her family was stationed at Clark Air Base, on the island of Luzon in the Philippines. In June of 1991 the air force base was evacuated when the volcano, Mount Pinatubo erupted. She arrived in the United States for the very first time that summer.

Being in a military family, she moved often. She has lived in towns and cities throughout multiple states. Thatcher, Arizona is where she finished her last months of middle school before heading back to Seoul, South Korea to attend high school. Although being somewhat isolated in another country, her high school offered unique opportunities. She was able to visit surrounding countries numerous of times through school events. Upon graduating high school, she relunctantly[sic] accepted admission to the University of Washington in Seattle despite her heart being set on an education in London.

After Seattle, she moved to California to pursue a career in entertainment.

She finally had her gender reassignment surgery in August of 2013[sic]. She hopes to eventually become a TV Host/Journalist. Kylan is currently pursuing her dream in winning the Miss Universe title.

In addition to standing for equal rights– she believes that same-sex couples should have the right to marry– she is also a supporter of LiNK, which brings awareness to the Human Right Crisis in North Korea.