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Friday, December 19, 2014

Looking for Something to Do? Free Events Dec. 20 to 26


Here are events scheduled Saturday, Dec. 20, to Friday, Dec. 26. 

All events are free, so take a look -- and don't you dare say there's nothing to do in Pasadena!

Children's and adult choirs perform songs of the season daily now through Wednesday, Dec. 24, at 8 p.m. in the courtyard at One Colorado.
 
The Festival of Lights is commemorated for eight days beginning Dec. 17. Enjoy special displays celebrating Hanukkah now through Dec. 31 at Central Library, La Pintoresca Branch Library and Linda Vista Branch Library during regular hours.  

The annual Holiday Light Up in Upper Hastings Ranch is in full swing and will remain in all its glory now through Jan. 1.  Any evening after dark, just drive to East Sierra Madre Boulevard and head north on any street between Riviera and Cynthia. Each street in UHR has a unique theme.
 
Santa will make his way from the North Pole to Paseo Colorado Saturday, Dec. 20, from 1 to 4 p.m. to visit with children and provide special treats. 

The Old Pasadena Farmers Market now has dedicated children's activities Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. organized by community partners including Kidspace Children's Museum, Farm Style Cooking for Kids and Armory Center for the Arts. The next OPFM is scheduled Sunday, Dec. 21.

Teens are invited to make snowglobes Monday, Dec. 22, at 2 p.m. on the fourth floor at Central Library to personalize for themselves or give as gifts. Miniatures, slogans, glitter and jars will be provided.  

Children ages 5 to 12 are invited to read books to gentle, well-trained dogs at Barks and Books Monday, Dec. 22, at 3 p.m. at La Pintoresca Branch Library.

"Miracle on 34th Street" (1947) starring Edmund Gwenn, Maureen O'Hara and Natalie Wood will be shown on the big screen in the Scott Pavilion at the Pasadena Senior Center Friday, Dec. 26, at 1 p.m.  You do not have to be a member of the Senior Center to attend.



Photo credits: CNN, The Art Spot, imgkid, One Colorado, Patrick Murfin, Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA, IMDB, Los Angeles Love Affair,

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Mystery History -- Solved!


Barbara wins with her11:38 Tuesday guess "Elks Lodge after the 1987 Whittier Narrows quake; the chimney has collapsed. It's October, and that's how we know it wasn't the reindeer"

In the 1987 photo above, a portion of the stately Elks Lodge at 400 W. Colorado Boulevard, including the roof and chimney, has been severely damaged by the Whittier Narrows earthquake. There was damage to other parts of the building as well.

Here is the Elks Lodge today:


And a side-by-side comparison with the top photo:


The Elks Lodge, at the southeast corner of Colorado and Orange Grove boulevards, was designed by Myron Hunt and built in 1911. To this day it has an active membership. The property is perhaps best known by non-members as everybody's favorite parking spot for the Colorado Street Bridge Party and "media corner" during the Rose Parade.

The 5.9 Whittier Narrows quake killed eight people on Oct. 1, 1987, and caused widespread damage, especially in the San Gabriel Valley and East Los Angeles. Property damage estimates throughout the affected areas totaled $358 million. The quake was felt throughout Southern California and southern Nevada.

This article in the New York Times gives a good account of the widespread damage. Most of the buildings that collapsed had been constructed with unreinforced masonry.  

Most unreinforced masonry buildings were built before 1933, predating modern earthquake-resistant design. Bricks were not strengthened with embedded steel bars.

Miraculously, two people inside Fair Oaks Automotive at 101 S. Fair Oaks Ave. in Pasadena survived when the unreinforced masonry building collapsed as a result of the quake:


The north wall of the building fell over onto parked cars, which were flattened:


This is what the building (the yellow one) looked like before the quake:


If you're interested in what Building Code regulations say about unreinforced masonry structures, click here.


Many thanks to Chris and Kevin and the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner,

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Mystery History


Where are we? And what's happening?

The first person to answer both questions correctly will win lunch with me -- I'll buy yours and you'll buy mine. 

Remember, leave your best guess as a comment on this blog post but don't try to give the entire back story (that's my job). 

I'll have the full scoop on Thursday.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Looking for Something to Do? Free Events Dec. 6 to 12


Here are events scheduled Saturday, Dec. 6, to Friday, Dec. 12. 

All events are free, so take a look -- and don't you dare say there's nothing to do in Pasadena! 

The Festival of Lights is commemorated for eight days beginning Dec. 17. Enjoy special displays celebrating Hanukkah now through Dec. 31 at Central Library, La Pintoresca Branch Library and Linda Vista Branch Library during regular hours.


The Playhouse District's Merry, Merry Movie event Saturday, Dec. 6, beginning at 10 a.m., will include a free screening of "Arthur Christmas" (2011, PG) at the Laemmle Theater (popcorn included!) plus children's activities and photos with Santa. Be sure to click on the link for important details and instructions.

Festivities at South Lake's Holidayfest Saturday, Dec. 6, from noon to 5 p.m. will include carolers, live music, children's crafts, carriage rides, a scavenger hunt and more.  

Traditional and original music of the season by Los Angeles area songwriters will be performed Saturday, Dec. 6, from 1 to 5 p.m. in the Donald R Wright Auditorium at Central Library.
 
Celebrate the 10th anniversary of the film "The Polar Express" (2004, G) with the voices of Tom Hanks and Steven Tyler. See the movie plus enjoy a special Christmas train show Saturday, Dec. 6, at 2 p.m. at Santa Catalina Branch Library.

The holiday literary festival and Christmas tree lighting at Allendale Branch Library Saturday, Dec. 6, from 4 to 6 p.m. will include refreshments and a stellar roster of poets and authors who will explore the true meanings of the holidays in works ranging from irreverent to spiritual.

Enjoy the harmonies of indie folk rock group The Wild Reeds Saturday, Dec. 6, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the courtyard at One Colorado.There will be yummy treats and Santa will pop in for some impromptu photo opps.

Children can come for a visit with Santa and special treats Sunday, Dec. 7, from 1 to 4 p.m. at Paseo Colorado


This week's film on the big screen in the Donald R. Wright Auditorium at Central Library is "The Christmas Candle" (2013, PG) starring Hans Matheson and Samantha Barks Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 1 p.m. In an enchanting English village, legend has it that every 25 years an angel visits the village candlemaker and touches a single candle that creates a Christmas Eve miracle for whoever lights it.


Enjoy Random Acts of Music performed by a Pasadena Symphony string duo Wednesday, Dec. 10, from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at Hill Avenue Branch Library. Everyone is invited to make requests and converse with the musicians. 


See up and coming comedians perform in rapid fire (four minutes each) on open mic night at The Ice House Comedy Club Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 6 p.m. There will be no cover charge.

Enjoy a staged reading of an adaptation of "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 7 p.m. at Pasadena Museum of History followed by a Q&A.

Mayor Bill Bogaard and the United Nations Association Pasadena Chapter will host a community event in honor of International Human Rights Day Wednesday, Dec. 10, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the Donald R. Wright Auditorium at Central Library. International Day of Light and Light-based Technologies is the theme.

Help decorate the Christmas tree at Lamanda Park Branch Library Thursday, Dec. 11, at 3:30 p.m. and enjoy treats and family fun.


"The Red Shoes" (1948) starring Moira Shearer and Anton Walbrook will be shown on the big screen in the Scott Pavilion at Pasadena Senior Center Friday, Dec. 12, at 1 p.m. A young ballet dancer is torn between the man she loves and her pursuit to become a prima ballerina. You do not have to be a member of the Pasadena Senior Center to attend.

The Christmas tree lighting event at La Pintoresca Branch Library and La Pintoresca Park will include crafts, caroling, refreshments and a visit from Santa Friday, Dec. 12, from 4 to 5:30 p.m.  Festivities at Hastings Branch Library will be on the same day at the same time.


Photo credits: Time and Date, Freedown Wallpaper, South Lake Business Association, The Wild Reeds, IMDB, News 9, Noel Noel Noel, Crafts for Kids, WKVI.





Saturday, November 29, 2014

Looking for Something to Do? Free Events Dec. 1 to 5


Here are events scheduled Monday, Dec.1, to Friday, Dec. 5.


All events are free, so take a look -- and don't you dare say there's nothing to do in Pasadena!


Children's and adult choirs will perform songs of the season daily from Monday, Dec. 1, to Wednesday, Dec. 24, at 8 p.m. in the courtyard at One Colorado.


The first Tuesday of every month from 4 to 8 p.m. is Free Family Night at Kidspace Children's Museum. On Tuesday, Dec. 2, explore the art and history of puppets, make shadow puppets, learn the science behind puppetry and create a bag puppet. At 6:30 p.m. there will be a performance by the Bob Baker Marionettes.


Singers with the Pasadena Opera will perform Wednesday, Dec. 3, from 12:10 to 12:40 p.m. at Pasadena Presbyterian Church for the popular Music at Noon recital series. Feel free to bring lunch.

"Joyeux Noel" (2005, PG-13) starring Benno Furmann and Diane Kruger will be shown on the big screen in the Donald R. Wright Auditorium at Pasadena Central Library Wednesday, Dec. 3, at 1 p.m. On Christmas Eve 1914 during World War I, in a true lesson of humanity, opposing troops put down their weapons to reach out to each other on the battlefield. Based on a true story.

    Pasadena Senior Center art students will display their works in watercolors and mixed media Wednesday, Dec. 3, from 5 to 7 p.m. Complimentary wine and cheese will be provided and a harpist will play.     


The first Friday of every month from noon to 5 p.m. is Free Admission Day at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. On Friday, Dec. 5, enjoy the current exhibitions An Opening of the Field, Burning Down the House, Chimera and everything else the museum has to offer.

"Some Like It Hot" (1959) starring Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe will be shown on the big screen in the Scott Pavilion at Pasadena Senior Center Friday, Dec. 5, at 1 p.m. When two musicians witness a mob hit they disguise themselves as women and flee the state in an all female band, but further complications set in. You do not have to be a member of the Pasadena Senior Center to attend.

The first Friday of every month from 5 to 8 p.m. is Free Admission Night at the Norton Simon Museum. On Friday, Dec. 5, enjoy the exhibitions Home and Away: The Printed Works of Ruth Asawa; Lock, Stock and Barrel: Norton Simon's Purchase of Duveen Brothers Gallery; Manet's "The Railway" on loan from the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.; and everything else the museum has to offer.


Mayor Bill Bogaard will flip the switch that turns on thousands of colorful lights on the City Hall Christmas tree Friday, Dec. 5, at 6 p.m. Activities from 5 to 7 p.m. will include carolers, music by local school bands, refreshments, children's crafts, a visit from Santa and much more. Please consider bringing an unwrapped gift for the Pasadena Fire Department's Spark of Love Toy Drive that benefits local, low-income children.


The ambitious and exciting Dawn mission is one of NASA's most remarkable projects. On Friday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. in the Vosloh Forum (Building UU on this map) at Pasadena City College Dr. Mark Rayman, the Dawn project mission director at JPL, will explain the probe's venture into the asteroid belt.



Photo credits: One Colorado, Small World Entertainment, RGBStock, Admit One Film Addict, Pasadena Museum of California Art, Norton Simon Museum, the mighty Zack Stromberg, NASA

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Mystery History -- Solved!


Peter was close enough with his 3:30 p.m. Tuesday guess "The Girl Scout headquarters at the southeast corner of memorial park...making way" so he is this week's winner.

In the 1959 photo above, a demolition crew prepares to raze the headquarters of the San Gabriel Valley Council of Campfire Girls at the south end of Memorial Park.

In this photo, Holly Street is to the right of the headquarters; the buildings you see across the street are still there:




 Sadly, it was going, going, gone...


The Board of City Directors, now called the City Council, had ordered an immediate start on preparation of plans for a senior citizens center after two years of discussion.

The Pasadena Senior Center opened in 1960. It was the first independent senior center in Southern California (others were under the jurisdiction of municipalities) and one of the first independent senior centers in the nation. 

It was also the first senior center in California to receive national accreditation from the National Council on Aging.

After a significant renovation and expansion that tripled its square footage, the new and improved Pasadena Senior Center opened in 1998:


Now people 50 and older can take advantage of everything from social services to classes to field trips to competitive sports. 

 
See a more comprehensive history of the Pasadena Senior Center here

There is a long-standing agreement between the City of Pasadena and the Pasadena Senior Center that it can operate on city-owned land in exchange for providing services and programs for seniors at Jackie Robinson Center, Villa-Parke Community Center and Victory Park Center


Many thanks to Pasadena Public Library and Pasadena Senior Center.

In the interest of full disclosure, the Pasadena Senior Center is one of my clients. I write and distribute news releases, manage media relations and provide communications counsel.