What they found at the bottom of Echo Park Lake

Photo from Above The Lake blog

We’re a few months into the Echo Park Lake rehab project, but besides the torn up sidewalks and construction vehicles, you wouldn’t really be able to tell the lake had been drained after the recent heavy rains. In addition to a few photos by Angelino Heights resident Steve (who took the above photo and posted it on his blog, Above The Lake), we have the official list from the city of what (and how many) was found in the lake after the draining. We’re not really surprised they found a couple of guns, but a telephone booth?! Check out the list below:

Park Trash Cans – 20
Construction cones – 36
Shopping Carts – 7
Portable Stereos/Boombox – 3
Pay Telephone – 1
Skateboard – 6
Parking Enforcement Boot – 1
Toilet – 1
Glass bottles – Hundreds
Model Boat – 2
Frisbee – 20
Weapons (guns) – 2
Office Chair – 6
Miscellaneous toys, Trash, Debris – Hundreds

Of course you can’t count every single thing, and once they start dredging the lake, they’ll probably find more items in the muck.

Check out more photos of the Echo Park Lake rehab project on our Flickr set.

  • Geore

    Jimmy Hoffa !!

  • YZH

    I love it. A parking enforcement boot. Ha!

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  • hmmm

    So that 65 million dollars was well spent.

  • jesse ayala

    why was there no rehab on the park ten years ago when there were no hipsters or whites living here in my neighborhood. nobody cared when the majority of our residents were of latin decent.

  • Eastsider

    @Jesse There was a rehab done on the Park in 1984. Maybe if the people in your neighborhood didn’t trash the park, it wouldn’t have needed a rehab AGAIN.


    @Jesse what you are saying is true homeboy no body gave a shit about echo park when it was predominately Latinos living here. That just goes to show that the government doesn’t care about us all they intend to do is lock up the homies and slowly take back the streets that our families have live in for many many years.

  • George

    What, no outfits, eg., needles,crack pipes,roach clips, knives,dead bodies ect.

  • Hong

    Man that lake was dirty, but man…I miss the park. Good times good times

  • becky

    i know back in the mid 80’s i left a few things there!

  • Jessy blonde

    According to the unknown source, other unreported subjects that are found are hispanic prostitutes and drug smugglers. Why you laughing!!!

  • David

    @Jessie sorry to hear you feel that way. It’s so easy to blame others. I’ve found no matter who you are you need to take your own action to solve situations that involve your neighborhood. It’s not about who you are it’s getting involved to make a difference. People seem to think that sitting back and complaining is going to solve their problems or make them feel better. I have news for you, in order to make a difference you MUST make an effort to bring change to your area through contacting your own Neighborhood Councils http://www.gepenc.org/openbd/gepnc/index.cfm?ModuleId=11 or talk with your councilman, etc. I’m doing just that with our North Hollywood Neighborhood Council. Cleaning up NoHo by volunteering time on our Beautification Team. It all begins with YOU! Make a difference for all Jessie. Hope you do just that neighbor.

    God Bless, David

  • ForeBarca

    Also found:
    1. The soul of Congress
    2. The soul of the Catholic Church
    3. Arnold Schawrznegger’s wedding ring
    4. Papa Joe’s dentures

  • OneBadVato

    @Jesse. You rite homeboy. No one did nothing when us latinos were the only ones here. Now the cops will use the new park as a reason to arrest homeboys to keep us out of the park.

  • http://abrighterhellas.blogspot.com Alois Saint-Martin

    OMG My Old Mott The Hoople Albums !

  • CrANKY

    Good, now fill the cesspool with concrete!

  • Benny Gunns

    @jesse and the others that agree with that comment, I grew up in Pico Heights and I know it’s easy to say that the government doesn’t care about the immigrant communities, but lets be honest with outselves: the government is not some magical force that will come to save us. We need to take responsibility for our neighborhoods.

    1. Learn
    2. Educate
    3. Organize
    4. Succeed

    No one is going to do it for you; and it’s no one’s job to do it for you.

  • B. B.2

    Wasn,t the lake drained some years ago when the various immigrants were eating the Lotus plants that grow here and in only one other place in the world. That does not sound like a renovation but a rescue of a beautiful species.
    Is this the same renovation mentioned and if so tell the truth about what the draining was about.

  • Jerry

    A lot of hipsters are hispanic. And a lot of those, if not all, take care of where they live.

    I don’t see it as a discrimination issue at all. It’s more of an issue of who is going to take care and clean up the area in which they live.

    Look at downtown; now that people (black people, latin people, white people, asian people) are moving there and doing things other than drugs and crime in the area, you see more police, businesses, visitors, etc.

    MacArthur Park is next. Your “vatos” and “gente” better clean it up or else these “hipsters and whites” are going to move there too and raise the rents.

    It’s nice to know I can buy a fake ID in the area but they really should do something else with the area. It’s prime real estate. If they don’t want to, and want to pay cheap rent, maybe Los Angeles isn’t the place for them.

  • Marlin Zabel

    It was a pay telephone, not a telephone booth!

  • tony

    If it appreicat4ed it will be rehabbed..If not, like it was why bother..Sorry Homeboys and Girls..take csome responsility and help maintain, not use and abuse.

  • Sam Calderon from Lynwood

    @Jesse and all you tapados,…get over that…move on and let go of all that negativity and educate yourselves…Educate/ Lead/ and maybe the next project that needs renovation in our community will be lead by you…Suckas!

  • Hal Glicksman

    The draining of MacArthur Park lake in 1974 resulted in a wonderful art exhibition of assemblages of junk saved from the lake including a miniature submarine. The assemblages were by James Woods who owned an antique store nearby. The exhibition was at Otis Art Institute and included paintings of Echo Park by Carlos Almaraz. I also remember the draining of the Venice canals and the assemblage artists who poked the mud there for treasures. Too bad the artists can’t get muddy in Echo Park Lake. Too much worry about liability today.

  • Bruce

    I walked across it in 84 amazed at what was sticking up from the dryed cracked mud. Bring back the paddle boats this time.

  • arthur

    it is a COMPLETE discrimination issue.
    people do not sit back and do nothing.. it seems as if the voice only matters if the individual behind such voice do not account for the people who have long resided in echo park.

    these “hipsters” have invaded communities and it is a sad reality they there are attemtpting to invade our communities and rid our cultural identities

    MAYBE los angeles is NOT the place for hipsters…

    first come first serve….

  • Ramos

    Why do people automatically through the race card in. Not all Hispanics are hipster, Jesse I agree with you when people actually used the
    park to play and have fun not as a place to exercise they didn’t care, now they do. Really messed up! and I been living here for 32 years tired of all these hipsters saying they lived here for ever which is 1year.

  • http://google carlos

    since i was little i played in that park i still miss it

  • Joe

    Hey Jesse. How many times have you cleaned the trash off your neighborhood streets homie?

  • T

    To all of you who say, “you should do something and take care of your own neighborhood,” you are not physically out draining the parks or whatever where you reside. The city/government does it. You aren’t out picking up trash or feeding the homeless. Whenever the city sees an opportunity to capitalize they come in with state money backing them.

    The point, which is valid, is that little attention is given to poverty stricken areas until something about it looks promising financially. And it is usually well off young white kids moving into sketchy area because it’s cheap and they think it’s cool to live in the “ghetto” that makes it that way.

    I live with someone who is capitalizing off of the gentrification. As a person they aren’t really a humanitarian at all. Every action is done with hopes to gain in mind. This attitude is on a small scale what is happening on a large scale… throughout the world.

  • Molly

    @arthur, you wanna talk about first come first serve? Echo Park, then called Edendale was founded in the 1880’s. The Hispanic population started moving to the area post WWIIl. I’m assuming that whatever country that you or your ancestors moved to America from, it was to live in a land of freedom, so please don’t start saying that Los Angeles isn’t a place for certain people and check your sense of seniority at the door.

    Now tell me that this area isn’t safer, prettier, and more economically abundant than it was 10 years ago.

    By the way, what is it that you want to be “served” anyway?

  • autonomousgerm

    This park is too beautiful and too precious of an oasis in the middle of LA to leave to people who don’t appreciate it. Every time I turn around there’s more and more graffiti being painted. Maybe if people wouldn’t tag the shit out of the place, they’d spend the money to help clean it up. You guys want to live in a f-ing dump, go ahead – but do it somewhere else. Clean up after yourselves or GTFO.

  • http://yahoo Gloria

    Its some of us hispanics that are dirty….they forgot to add all the dirty Diapers the found!!!! Thank God fpr these “Hipsters” that came in and really use the park for something positive other than tagging, prostitution, drugs, etc……why would the Goverment even waste thier time cleaning up if it will get back to Junk anyway! So sad but True and Truth hurts!

  • Di Valentine

    Just wondering if you have heard when the cuban festival is happening this year? Thanks.

  • Mimi36

    Moving forward is a beautiful thing, regardless of who pushed it into fruition. I was raised in a poor, violent, Central and South American neighborhood. It was not until the police and gang task force increased and took care of the trouble makers that my city became more beautiful. Guess what? My city is STILL dominated with central and
    South American people. Not everything is racially motivated, sometimes you just have to clean up the scum before you can see the beauty in any given place. Good for you, people of Echo Park, new and residing. Cant wait to visit your park.

  • Derek

    Well, it’s been a week since the park has reopened and it looks great. Yes, there are a lot of complex factors impacting what is going on in the neighborhood these days, the demographic is changing, business is picking up- let’s hope this improves the quality of life for EVERYONE who lives there. Let’s also hope that everyone: black, brown, yellow, or white will keep the park and the lake looking good. Because it doesn’t really matter whether one has been a resident for 50 years or 50 minutes, we all have a responsibility to keep our neighborhood up, and if it starts to look like crap, let’s start showing up at neighborhood council meetings, or even the LA City Council meeting to address the issue, because no amount of blaming is going to keep our neighborhood safe and clean.

  • Ann

    I’m glad that all the gang bangers, taggers, criminals, etc are killing off their own race by murdering each other. This is why no one wanted to live or drive by this garbage trash city. Thanks to “Gentrification” <— look it up in the dictionary if you can read, this city has cleaned up quite well.

  • Justin

    I can’t believe so many scrubs chucked all that stuff it there. That is revolting. People in LA really need to start doing there bit to help the environment and clean up the city. It is getting there… very slowly. Graffiti is not cool – never has and never will be. Rubbish belongs in a bin and not in the lake. Homeowners/landlords go and buy some paint and give your place a fresh look!, and please if you see any crims call the police.

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