Before Echo Park Lake was drained, before the gates went up around its perimeters, the lake wasn’t just a hub for families and picnickers to enjoy. Sunday afternoons were often host to street vendors on the grass alongside the sidewalk, wrapping around the entire northern section of the park. While many enjoyed shopping for a variety of new and used items, others found the vendors to be invasive, taking over valued park space and leaving loads of litter behind.
The mass of street vendors wasn’t just an issue at Echo Park Lake, it’s all over the city. Today, the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors is reviewing a motion to strengthen the crack-down on street vendors, which are, after all, illegal. But it’s also more than just about the legality – it’s an enforcement issue, a race and class issue, a tax issue, and a business issue. At Echo Park Lake, it also became a safety/crime issue as witnesses have reported seeing armed men portioning out and selling spaces for $20-40 the night before.
The proposal wouldn’t affect the occasional yard sale, but specifically addresses illegal street vendors including those bacon-wrapped hot dogs and pushcarts.
With Echo Park Lake re-opening in mid-May, the question is: Will the street vendors return, and will the city crack down on the activity if they do?
Residents should attend a meeting on the Sunset Boulevard beautification project on Tuesday, April 9 at 6:30 pm.
This is your chance to learn about the $750,000 beautification project that stretches along the main drag in Echo Park. Plans include pocket parks, tree planting, and even hitching posts on Alvarado and Sunset.
Sunset Blvd. Streetscape Beautification Project Meeting
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
6:30 – 7:30 pm
Edendale Library – Community Room
2011 West Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90026
See you there!
The new Dodgers season is upon us!
For Echo Parkians, however, baseball season is bittersweet. It’s GREAT to be able to walk to the games and we love being Dodgers fan, but the traffic and the noise and fighting for a seat at the sports bars before the game…. Well, it can get a little hectic.
Opening Day is the worst. So prepare yourself. On Monday, April 1 the Dodgers take on the San Francisco Giants once again. Here are some details for opening day:
Report any non-emergency security concerns to our Neighborhood Focus line at (323) 224-2636.
There have been a lot of changes at the Stadium, including installation of a sophisticated wi-fi network (YES!), a new clubhouse, and new “amenities” on all levels (we think that means restrooms).
All the renovations will debut at tonight’s Exhibition Game versus the Angels, which starts at 7:10 pm.
Admittedly the most exciting rumor circulating around Twitter isn’t the renovated restrooms (although that’s awesome). It’s the BEER! Word is Golden Road Brewing will be on tap, finally introducing craft beer to the craft services at the stadium (by the way, Shock Top is not craft beer).
With the growing craft brewery scene in Los Angeles, we hope this is just a starting point for Dodger Stadium to start supporting local craft beer. We’ll toast to that!
This should be an exciting year – with all the roster changes, fans are hoping this will be a winning year and the high ticket sales are reflecting just that. See you at the stadium!
The annual Easter Egg Hunt at the Echo Park Farmers’ Market takes place on Friday, March 29.
The craft table will help the kids prepare bunny ears to wear for the egg hunt, and the Easter Bunny will be on hand to take photos (bring your cameras!).
Toddlers ages five and under will start at 5:00 pm, ages six and over at 6:00 pm.
If you’re not able to make it with the family to the hunt on Friday, check out the Saturday egg hunt with the Echo Park Rec Center.
The 4th annual Echo Park Art Walk (Public Displays of Art) is taking place on Saturday, April 20, 2013 from noon to 6:00 pm. This year is a little different – the Art Walk is collaborating with the Friends of Elysian Heights for some extra fun:
The mission behind this event is to “connect and celebrate community” and to share the neighborhood culture with locals and visitors alike. In collaboration with Friends of Elysian Heights Elementary School’s “Art & Music Festival,” this year’s event is made possible by support from local businesses, schools, artists, musicians, neighborhood organizations, community members and residents.
Explore and discover whimsical chalk art, chain link fence galleries, an art piece scavenger hunt, kids activities, driveway theaters, movie screenings, hands on crafting stations, sculptures, musical and dance performances, live art works, special store promotions and other various creative & mind stimulating public displays of ART!
Last year, over 70 venues and artists participated in the event, and it was a lot of fun! Once again this year, the organizers are looking for volunteers and vendors to participate.
Click here to learn about being a participating venue, or if you’re an artist or musician.
Contact Heather if you’re interested in volunteering at firstname.lastname@example.org
Little Joy, the former dive bar on the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Portia in Echo Park, underwent ownership changes and quite a few renovations since its closure last November. Now, it’s reopening a couple of days earlier than reported on Friday, March 29.
Owners Reyna-Donaldson (an Echo Park resident) and Don Andes have restored much of the bar’s original interior flare, according to a press release:
Little Joy has been stripped to its industrial bones and then carefully layered with a touch of Art Deco and a lick of rock’n’roll. The building’s original brick and broken plaster has been uncovered along with a number of authentic details that highlight the location’s previous lives as a 1920s auto body shop, a mid-century pharmacy and ultimately, a bar beginning in the early ‘60s.
The pool tables remain, but one of the improvements we are personally looking forward to is the introduction of several beers on tap (eight, to be exact), a “rotating menu of local and hard-to-find brews.” Wines and cocktails will also be on the menu – and you can now leave the cash at home to pay with a card.
Gone are the peeling plastic-covered chairs and sticky tables, replaced with fresh bar stools and new booths. We doubt that Corona painting made it through the changes. One thing is for sure – Little Joy is no longer a dive bar, but at least the bathrooms are MUCH improved!