Friday, September 25, 2009

At Woodley Park in Van Nuys

Los Angeles - In celebration of Deaf Awareness Month, the 6th annual DEAFestival Los Angeles will be held Saturday, September 26, 2009 from noon to 5 pm at Woodley Park in Van Nuys.

The FREE event will include talent and fashion shows, activities for teens, art workshops, fire safety and women's defense demonstrations, information booths, FREE food (while supplies last) and more. There will be a special appearance by motorcross champion Ashley Fiolek.

The event is sponsored by the City's Department of Recreation and Parks, Department of Cultural Affairs and Department on Disability. Councilmembers Dennis P. Zine (3rd District), Tony Cardenas (6th District), Richard Alarcon (7th District), Bernard C. Parks (8th District), Greig Smith (12th District) and Jose Huizar (14th District).

Additional sponsors include California State Senator Alex Padilla (D-San Fernando Valley, 20th District), California State Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes (D-Sylmar, 39th District), the Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, the California State University Northridge National Center on Deafness, the California Association of the Deaf, the California Resource Center Sign Language Interpreter Service, Friends of the Family and the Family Focus Resource & Empowerment Center.

For more information on this event go to Woodley Park is located at 6350 Woodley Avenue in Van Nuys 91436. Volunteers are needed and signing is not mandatory; if interested call Bertha Velazquez at (213) 473-7006.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694
Harvey Drut: (213) 202-2696
World Water Monitoring Day at Cabrillo Aquarium and Ken Malloy Park

Los Angeles - Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in San Pedro and Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park in Harbor City - two City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks facilities - will participate in the 8th annual World Water Monitoring Day on Saturday, September 26, 2009, from 10 am to noon.

Samples will be collected from the beach, a salt marsh, and lake and information will be given on how people can conserve and prevent pollution of this essential natural resource. No experience is necessary for this event that is open to anyone who wants to volunteer, although children age 14 or younger must be accompanied by an adult. Hats and comfortable shoes for walking on sand or similar surfaces are recommended.

Coordinated by the Water Environment Federation and the International Water Association, the program is designed to build public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world by encouraging communities to monitor the condition of local rivers, streams, estuaries and other water bodies between March 22 and December 31.

In addition to the Department of Recreation and Parks facilities, Huntington Beach, Compton Creek and Arroyo Seco in Pasedena will be involved. The results will be added to an international database at

Participating organizations include Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, the Southern California Marine Institute, TreePeople, the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers Watershed Council, Heal the Bay, El Nido Family Center, the Clean Water Team (part of the California State Water Control Board), Arroyo Seco Foundation, Santa Monica Baykeeper and DIVERS.

For more information on World Water Monitoring Day or to make group reservations at Cabrillo Aquarium call (310) 548-7562. Cabrillo Aquarium is located at 3720 Stephen M. White Drive, San Pedro 90731. To inquire about the activities at Ken Malloy Park call (310) 548-7728. Ken Malloy Park is located at 25820 Vermont Avenue, Harbor City 90710.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694
Harvey Drut: (213) 202-2696

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Events and activities for the weekend of September 18-20

Los Angeles – Are you looking for something to do this weekend? Check out the list below to find out what the Department of Recreation and Parks has going on this week.

Saturday, September 19:

Coastweeks: Coastal Clean-up at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium (CMA). You can make a difference! Adopt Cabrillo Beach and the Point Fermin State Marine Park by joining a coastal clean-up from 9 am – 12 noon. Spend the morning with CMA and others who care to improve our environment. Cabrillo Marine Aquarium is located at 3720 Stephen M. White Drive in San Pedro. For more information call (310) 548-7562.

Salt Marsh Open House: Help celebrate caring for the coast as you learn about the Salinas de San Pedro wetlands habitat at Cabrillo Beach by using binoculars and microscopes to observe live animals. Examine plant and animal specimens from the CMA collection. This event is FREE but registration is required, please call (310) 548-7562 for more information. Event starts at 12 noon and ends at 2 pm.

Walk Cabrillo: Pack a lunch and join a walk guided by CMA’s Education Staff. Start at the Aquarium courtyard, go to the tide pools, then to the beaches and salt marsh and end back at the Aquarium. Explore each habitat and discover signs of the current season and examine fossils, native plants and beach wrack! This event is from 2 pm – 4 pm and has a $3 charge. For more information call (310) 548-7562.

Community Yard Sale: Elysian Valley Recreation Center is hosting a Community Yard Sale from 9 am – 4 pm. Come and check out the merchandise! Remember one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!! For more information call the Recreation Center at (323) 666-5058.

Light @ the Lighthouse Concert: A FREE music concert and family festival at Point Fermin Park in San Pedro. There will be three stages for all ages, including over 30 different acts. Local churches, businesses and non-profit groups are putting on this day-long family celebration from 10 am – 6 pm. There will be a “Kids Kingdom Stage” that will feature puppet shows, dancers, crafts, storytelling, face painting, a climbing wall, inflatable obstacle course and more. For more information visit the event’s website at

Sunday, September 20:

Constitution Day Celebration: The Point Vicente Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) will host a celebration of the U.S. Constitution Day by ringing the Korean Friendship Bell at Angels Gate Park. The FREE event will be from 11 am – 3 pm. The United States Constitution was signed 222 years ago. Public law 915, signed by President Eisenhower designates September 17 through the 23 as Constitution Week. At 4:00 pm (Eastern Time) bells across America will ring to commemorate the signing of this important document. For more information on this event call (310) 548-5663.

Target Feria de la Familia: Target and the Plaza de la Raza Organization are hosting a family festival at Lincoln Park aka Plaza de la Raza from 12 noon - 6 pm. The FREE event will feature art activities (dough and tin art demonstrations, murals and face painting), youth art workshops (mask making, pinata making, recycled art, tin art and puppets) and youth performance workshops (aztec dance, folk dance and music exploration). There will also be entertainment throughout the day (salsa band, flamenco performance, mariachi and more). For more information on the Feria del la Familia call (323) 223-2475 or visit

Weekend Tidepool Walk: Cabrillo Marine Aquarium’s Education Staff will conduct a tour of the Point Fermin Marine Life Refuge from 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm. First attend an informative slide show in the auditorium then go along on the naturalist-led ramble on the rocks to see animals in their natural habitat. Outdoor clothing and sneakers are recommended. For more information on this FREE event call (310) 548-7562.

For more information on Department events or activities visit our website at or call (213) 202-2700.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Dedication Ceremony at MacArthur Park

Los Angeles - The Department of Recreation and Parks celebrated the completion of the MacArthur Park Improvement Project on Saturday, September 12, 2009. Councilmember Ed P. Reyes and hundreds of local community members were on hand to cut the ceremonial ribbon and join in the festivities.

The MacArthur Park Improvement Project transformed a dusty and flat dirt field into a green meadow that features a 37,000-square-foot synthetic turf, play area, picnic tables and outdoor exercise equipment. New lighting, an irrigation system and landscaping were also part of the improvements.

The new synthetic multipurpose field will provide a much needed soccer space for local youth and adults. Over 10,000 youth participate in soccer leagues at the park yearly.

The $2.4 million project was built by Park West Landscape, Inc. Public Works' Bureau of Engineering designed and managed the project. Funding was provided by Propositions K (specified) and the Capital Improvement Expenditure Program.

Dedicated and opened in 1887, MacArthur Park is one of the oldest and most popular parks run by the Department. Located just west of the Downtown Los Angeles, MacArthur Park lies in one of the most densely-populated areas in the City. The 40-acre parkland provides recreational opportunities to hundreds of local residents and visitors daily.

MacArthur Park is located at 2230 West 6th Street 90057. For more information on this project of the Department, please visit our website at or call (213) 202-2700.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694

Dedication of a Soccer Stadium at Boyle Heights Sports Center's

Los Angeles - Dozens of community members joined the Department of Recreation and Parks and Councilmember Huizar (14th District) in dedicating the a new synthetic soccer field at Boyle Heights Sports Center on Tuesday, September 8, 2009.

After a ceremonial ribbon cutting, attendees were invited onto the field where CHIVAS USA's power forward Gerson Mayen was showing of his foot skills and signing autographs. The new field will join a dozen other synthetic playing grounds run by the Department. With over 500 youth already signed up to play in soccer leagues at the Sports Center, the new field is sure to get plenty of use.

The $1.5 million project included the installation of a stadium sized soccer field and the refurbishment of the baseball/softball field. The project also included new permanent soccer goals, bleachers, remote controlled score boards at each field, lighting and landscaping.

The 103,910-square-foot soccer field boasts a synthetic surface which requires neither fertilizer nor water and is not only eco-friendly but also allows for more play with far less maintenance. The new field creates a significant increase in playing time, providing the community with more opportunities for recreational experiences.

The Architectural Division in the Bureau of Engineering (BOE) of the City's Department of Public Works designed the project, which the BOE's Recreational and Cultural Facilities Program managed. Park West Landscaping, Inc., of Pacoima served as the general contractor. Project funding came from Propositions K and 12.

Boyle Heights Sports Center is located at 933 South Mott Street, Los Angeles 90023. For more information on this location or the Department in general, please visit our website at or call (213) 202-2700.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694

End of Summer Celebration at Jackie Tatum/Harvard RC

Los Angeles - Thousands of youth and families came together at Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center to say farewell to the Summer Night Lights (SNL) 2009 season on Saturday, September 5. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, General Manager Jon Kirk Mukri, Commission President Barry A. Sanders and many other dignitaries were also on hand to celebrate the end of the summer program.

The End of Summer Celebration brought together youth from all 16 sites for a culminating event that emphasized friendship and healthy competition. Participating athletes took part in citywide basketball, soccer, skateboarding, handball and softball tournaments. Each winning team received trophies and shoes donated by VANS in collaboration with Soles4Souls, Inc.

Attendees were treated to FREE entertainment which included dance crew performances and live music. A moonbounce, climbing wall and classes/workshops in aviation, culinary arts, drama, mosaic art and hip-hop kept the fun going while The Hungry Hog kept bellies full by serving thousands of free meals.

This summer, SNL provided extended park hours at 15 City Recreation and Park facilities (plus one high school campus) in the City’s Gang Reduction and Youth Development (GRYD) zones. The gang reduction program offered expanded programming, after-school activities, athletic leagues, arts and family programs. This year, SNL ran from July 8 through Sept 5 and operated Wednesday though Saturday from 7 p.m. to midnight. All sites served free BBQ dinner.

Congratulations to all the Tournament Winners for a job well done!
*Imperial Courts Rec Center: Junior Basketball Division Champions
*Jackie Tatum/Harvard Rec Center: Adult Basketball Division Champions
*Jackie Tatum/Harvard Rec Center: Adult Co-Ed Softball Champions
*Ross Snyder Rec Center: Soccer Champions (5-7 year olds)
*Hubert Humphrey Park: Soccer Champions (8-10 year olds)
*Ross Snyder Rec Center: Soccer Champions (11-12 year olds)
*Jim Gilliam Rec Center: Soccer Champions (18 & up)

The Department would like to thank everyone for another successful SNL summer! We thank you for your support and participation and we hope to see you next SUMMER!!

The celebration of Buzz Aldrin Day in Los Angeles

Los Angeles - At 6:00 pm on Thursday, August 27, 2009, Councilmember Tom LaBonge stood at the front of the Griffith Observatory and declared it to be "Buzz Aldrin Day in Los Angeles". The famous Astronaut, who was one of the first humans to land and walk on the moon, joined Councilmember LaBonge, General Manager Jon Kirk Mukri, Dr. E.C. Krupp (Observatory Director) and over 100 hundred Angelenos.

Dr. Aldrin spoke about some of his experiences from his famous Apollo 11 voyage, which is part of his new autobiography, Magnificent Desolation. Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon with Neil Armstrong on July 20, 1969. The two astronauts spent 21 hours on the moon's surface and returned to Earth with 46 lbs of lunar rocks. Dr. Aldrin recounted his experiences in preparing for his trip to the moon, standing on the lunar surface and his bumpy return to Earth. After his speech, Dr. Aldrin greeted visitors and signed copies of his book.
Multiple telescopes were also set up along sidewalk of the Observatory's front lawn for free public viewing of the first quarter Moon. There are four major moon phases; new, first quarter, full and last/third quarter. The first quarter moon phase occurs a week after the new moon, when the Moon has completed about a quarter of its turn around the Earth. During this phase half of the illuminated part of the moon is visible.
For more information about this special event or the Department in general, please call (213) 202-2700 or visit our website at
Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

At Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center in South L.A.

Los Angeles - It's hard to believe that summer is already ending and it's even harder to believe that the Summer Night Lights program will be over too! But there will be one more chance to have some summer fun at the "End of Summer Celebration" at Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center on Saturday, September 5, 2009.

The culminating event will include basketball, soccer, softball, tennis, handball and skate tournaments, classes and/or workshops in aviation, culinary arts, drama, mosaic art, mechanics and hip-hop. There will also be FREE entertainment and food, a moon bounce, climbing wall and dance crew performances. The Jackie Tatum/Harvard Aquatic Facility will also be open, so don't forget your bathing suits!

The daylong event will begin at 10 am and is open to EVERYONE looking for a fun and safe way to spend the last Saturday of summer. Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center is located at 1535 West 62nd Street, Los Angeles 90047. For more information call (213) 202-2700.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2700
A festive birthday celebration at El Pueblo Plaza on September 5

Los Angeles - Can you believe Los Angeles is turning 228 years old? She looks pretty good for her age, doesn't she? She can't wait to celebrate her birthday and she wants everyone to join her in the festivities! The celebration starts at 6 am on Saturday, September 5, 2009 with Los Pobladores' "Walk to Los Angeles" and continues at El Pueblo Plaza.

The "Walk to Los Angeles" will follow in the footsteps of the original settlers whose walk 228 years ago led to the establishment of the City of Los Angeles. During the first week in September 1781, 44 people from 11 different families and four soldiers left Mission San Gabriel and proceeded nine miles to a river. There, on September 4, 1781, they established El Pueblo de la Reina de Los Angeles (The town of the Queen of Angels). Over 200 years later, Los Angeles is the largest city in the state of California and the second largest in the United States.

The walk is approximately nine miles and should take about three hours. It begins at San Gabriel Mission and proceeds west along Mission Road to Alhambra Avenue, then to Valley Blvd to Cesar Chavez then over the bridge to Alameda. For those who cannot make the entire trip, there is an option to meet at Lincoln Park to walk the last three miles. Concluding the nine-mile trek from San Gabriel, walkers will be greeted with a warm L.A. welcome at Los Angeles' 228th birthday celebration at El Pueblo Plaza (Olvera Street).

The celebration at El Pueblo Plaza will include free entertainment which will feature traditional dancing, dramatic presentations, a pinata and birthday cake. There are also various restaurants, historic tours and shops to visit on Olvera Street.

For more information or to register for the "Walk to Los Angeles" please call (213) 485-8376. Registered walkers will receive a wrist band, t-shirt and a fact sheet. Remember the event is FREE and is open to everyone!

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694
Seven seasonal pools will remain open until September 13

Los Angeles - With Los Angeles temperatures expecting to remain above 80 degrees for the next two weeks, the Department of Recreation and Parks has some cool news. Thanks to financial support from Kaiser Permanente, seven of our seasonal pools will remain open for an extra six days beyond their traditional Labor Day closing.

Jackie Tatum/Harvard Aquatic Facility, Griffith Park Pool, Northridge, Ritchie Valens, Ross Snyder, Stoner and Sun Valley pools will all be available for use from September 8 through September 13. Hours will be from 3:30 pm to 7:00 pm September 8-11; and noon to 5 pm September 12-13. Four of the seven locations have fun waterslides for kids to enjoy (Jackie Tatum/Harvard, Northridge, Stoner and Sun Valley pools).

Children age 17 or younger, seniors 65 or older and the disabled can continue to swim for FREE. Adults with a Library Card can swim for $2; otherwise, the charge for patrons ages 18-64 is $2.50. Children age 6 or younger must be accompanied by an adult at all times. In addition, kids ages 3-6 must be potty-trained and those younger than 3 must wear a swim diaper.

To find a pool near you, please contact the Department's Aquatics Division at (323) 906-7953. Individual pool brochures can be viewed and downloaded at www.laparks/dos/aquatic/aquatic.htm.

Jane Kolb: (213) 202-2694