Friday, August 19, 2016

A Post for Fellow Treehuggers...

Trees, trees and more South Pasadena trees!

I want to thank readers Johnny and Greenman for emailing me after yesterday's post on the library tree.  You guys asked if I had any video slideshows of my many (many!) tree pictures?  I aims to please...

But before you click on the above video, I am reminded of my very favorite South Pasadena tree story:

Thursday, August 18, 2016

South Pasadena Family Tree

Ever wonder about the history of the majestic Moreton Bay fig tree outside the South Pasadena Public Library? It certainly seems primordial -- like a remnant of our earth's distant past. My daughter  once said that she thought the tree surely must have been around when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

Even though I could imagine generations of pterodactyls making nests in that beautiful tree, I knew it wasn't that ancient. But I was genuinely surprised when it was revealed a few years ago that the tree is barely 100 years old...

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

South of Huntington

Check out the neighborhoods south of Huntington

When I first moved to South Pasadena, I thought the city's southernmost border was Huntington Drive.  It's a logical assumption: Huntington is a major thoroughfare.  It seems like some kind of line of demarcation.

As it turns out, the corner of Huntington and Fair Oaks was once the junction of the Pasadena Short Line and the Monrovia Line -- two important Big Red Car trolley routes.  After Henry E. Huntington incorporated the Pacific Electric Railway Company in 1901, he began work on what would eventually develop into the largest interurban electric rail system in the world...

Monday, August 8, 2016

Art in the City


Take a look at the public art on display in South Pasadena

I love being part of such a creative community here in South Pas.  I've already mentioned my love of the South Pasadena Arts Council.  Membership in SPARC is a great way to connect with the city's artists, writers, filmmakers, musicians and art afficianados.  But it's also fun to be reminded of South Pasadena's rich, artistic history ... and there are hints of it at every turn.  

During the Great Depression, Federal Relief agencies put many South Pasadena residents to work on projects ranging from building the control channel to constructing the high school fine arts and science buildings.  The powers-that-be realized that communities not only needed structures to have good function, they also needed them to have beautiful form.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Walking Around South Pas Neighborhoods...

So many different kinds of houses!

When I first moved to South Pasadena from the west side, I couldn't get over how beautiful it was.  It's not that my former neighborhood near the Santa Monica Airport wasn't nice.  It was great.  But South Pasadena had so many different kinds of houses nestled among so many different kinds of trees ... it was kind of overwhelming.  In a good way.  I started exploring my neighborhood on foot, and kept walking until I'd covered most of the sidewalks in town.  

Here I am, almost 9 years later, still looking around with a sense of wonder.  (My dog Rocky is always game to join me on a walk.)

Isn't it pretty here?

Want to leave a comment?  Head over to the Glimpses of South Pasadena Community Forum and start a conversation!  

Friday, July 15, 2016

South Pasadena Portrait

Take a look at the faces of South Pasadena

One of the things I love the most about my 116-year-old house is the large beveled mirror above the mahogany built-in.  There are a few dings in the frame, but the mirror is crystal clear, and the bank of nearby windows offers the kind of soft-glow lighting that makes every day a good hair day.  In the century since my home was built, a lot of people have looked at themselves in that mirror.

So how, exactly, has South Pasadena's reflection changed?

Monday, July 11, 2016

Mayberry Noir

"It seemed like a nice neighborhood to have bad habits in."
--Raymond Chandler

Come prowl around South Pasadena after dark with me...


Want to leave a comment?  Head over to the Glimpses of South Pasadena Community Forum and start a conversation!

Friday, July 8, 2016

Everyday Miracles


It's hard not to get caught up in the horrors of recent news.  I find my solace and inspiration in the ever-changing sky.  Clouds part.  Darkness turns to light.  

And for a few brief moments every day, it's magic hour.


Want to leave a comment?  (Come on.  Don't be shy.  I can see you thinking about it...) Head over to the Glimpses of South Pasadena Community Forum and start a conversation.  (Or just say hello!)

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Explore South Pasadena's Historic Buildings

Then and now...


The Los Angeles region doesn't have the greatest track record when it comes to preserving landmarks.  Despite the efforts of dedicated preservationists, many architectural wonders have been lost to the wrecking ball.  The Richfield Tower, The Brown Derby, The Garden of Allah, and The Ambassador Hotel are just a few of the historic structures that have been demolished in the name of progress.  (Many South Pasadena residents were worried that our very own Rialto Theater would meet the same fate.  Luckily, for now, that disaster seems to be averted.)

You won't find points of interest once the last art deco tile or Spanish arch has been hauled off to a landfill -- a parking lot here, a nondescript office building there.  What's left behind is a creeping blight of utilitarian sameness that has earned Los Angeles the title of "Strip Mall Capital of the World."  We've gained a lot of dry cleaners and nail salons, but we've lost a lot of our history and perhaps more than a little of our soul.

Friday, July 1, 2016

The South Pasadena Festival of Balloons Fourth of July Parade is Coming!

Buckle up, vintage car afficionados, and take a sweet ride in the South Pas 4th of July Parade

From the 7:00AM Kiwanis Club Pancake Breakfast to the 9:00PM South Pasadena High School Fireworks Show, July 4th in South Pasadena is jam-packed with all-American, small town goodness. There are many great things about the day's events, but I'm partial to the parade.  (It starts at 11:00AM downtown on Mission Street.)  Take a look at my video above for a vintage car lover's dream array of sweet rides, all gussied-up-for-the-4th.

Click here for a complete schedule of all the activities.

The only thing better than watching the parade is marching in it!



Want to leave a comment?  (I know you do.  I see you lurking.)  Head over to the Glimpses of South Pasadena Community Forum and start a conversation!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Take a Joy Ride Through South Pas

Buckle up, and go for a ride with me...

I see a lot of vintage cars cruising around South Pasadena.  They always remind me of our place in Southern California's transportation history.

I wrote all about it for Patch a few years ago.  You can read the article here.

Want to leave a comment or say hello?  Head over to the new Glimpses of South Pasadena Community Forum and start a conversation!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016