Wednesday, July 31, 2013

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Foothill Extension E-News 
July 31, 2013

Celebrating 10 Years of Passenger Service Between Union Station and Pasadena on the Gold Line

Last Friday, July 26, 2013, the Construction Authority hosted a celebration to mark the 10th anniversary of passenger service between Union Station and Pasadena on the Gold Line. More than 100 people attended the event, which took place at the Del Mar Station.

Congresswoman Judy Chu, State Assemblyman Chris Holden, Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard, Claremont Councilman Sam Pedroza, and former Los Angeles Councilman Ed Reyes were among the numerous speakers during the event, which was emceed by Construction Authority board chairman Doug Tessitor. A statement was also read by Congressman Adam Schiff.

Each speaker discussed the many benefits the Gold Line has brought to the region, including economic development, jobs, long-term changes to the framework of the cities it connects, and most importantly changes to the way people travel. County Supervisor Michael Antonovich noted that ridership now exceeds 44,000 boardings each weekday, surpassing ridership on the Green Line which opened for service in 1995 (eight years ahead of the Gold Line). Additionally, Metro board members Michael Antonovich, Glendale Councilman Ara Najarian and Duarte Councilman John Fasana discussed the importance of completing the line to Montclair and then Ontario Airport. The three committed themselves to working together to get the funding for the next half of the Foothill Extension.

It was a wonderful event that highlighted the continuing support and consensus found throughout this corridor for the Gold Line and its future extensions. We would like to thank all of the officials, their staffs, the Construction Authority board members and the many community members that took time out of their day to help us celebrate this important achievement for the region.

If you missed it,
here is a story that ran in the Pasadena Star-News. We encourage you to look at the photo gallery (there is a link in the story). Here are links to other stories written about the event on The Source, Glendora Patch, South Gold Line 10th Anniversary VideoPasadena Review, and Curbed LA.

We also encourage you to take three minutes to watch a video of Gold Line users discussing what the line has meant to them over the last decade and what they have to say to future riders from the Foothill Extension cities. It will certainly put a smile on your face and remind you why we are all working so hard to continue this line further east (just click on the image to the right or link above):

Construction Highlights: Azusa Ave Reopened to Traffic on Monday, July 29   
Work is underway throughout the 11.5-mile corridor. Below is just a quick highlight of some current construction activities:
Extensive work on the at-grade street crossing (pictured above) at Azusa Avenue is now substantially complete and the street re-opened for pedestrian and vehicular traffic earlier this week. Additionally, crews continue work on the at-grade street crossings at Pasadena Avenue and are beginning work at San Gabriel Avenue.

Earlier this month, the freight track was relocated to its new placement over Citrus Avenue. In August, the same will occur at Palm Drive. Once completed at Palm Drive, the freight track will have been successfully relocated between downtown Azusa and the city of Glendora. An important achievement.
Over the last several months, crews have made significant progress on the longest of the two dozen bridges being built or modified as part of the Foothill Extension project - the 700-foot long San Gabriel River Bridge. The new bridge will accommodate the dual-track light rail system, which must cross the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area in Irwindale to connect the future Duarte and Irwindale stations.

Earlier this month, crews completed installation of 21, 100-foot-long concrete girders atop the recently completed piers and abutments. It took several days to place the 100,000 pound girders, as shown in the progress shots below:   
With this important milestone now complete, the bridge structure is on schedule to be completed during the dry season, as is required by the United States Army Corp of Engineers and Los Angeles County Flood Control District. The next step will be to install the bridge deck.

Monrovia and Duarte
Work at the Monrovia and Duarte Gold Line Stations continues; as does construction of a number of at-grade street crossing. The first phase of the Buena Vista Street crossing work will be complete later this week, and the street will re-open to traffic. Partial lane closures on Buena Vista Street and Duarte Road will be in place until the end of August when the work at the intersection and crossing will be complete.

Additionally, work continues at the California Avenue grade crossing, and is anticipated to be completed by the end of September. Third party utility companies are out on Mountain Avenue relocating utilities over the next several months.

Work on the Santa Anita Bridge is on schedule and progressing well. The abutment walls are nearing completion, and at the end of August crews will transition to the second phase of work. Additionally, work on the Arcadia Gold Line Station platform is underway.

How can you stay updated, with so much going on? Check our interactive construction activity maps regularly:
Here are a few other easy ways to stay updated:     
Drop by one of our three public information offices:

400 N Santa Anita Ave, Suite 101-B, Arcadia, CA 91006
(Northeast corner of Santa Anita Ave. and La Porte St.)
Hours: Mondays and Wednesdays ONLY:  8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

406 E. Huntington Drive, Suite 202, Monrovia, CA 91016
(Construction Authority Offices)
Hours: Mondays through Friday:  8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

1300 W. Optical Drive, Suite 500, Azusa, CA 91702
Hours: Mondays through Friday:  8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Other Community Resources Include: 

Other Community Resources Include:

Shot Fired at Car Repo Team in Unincorporated Monrovia, Two Arrests Made

A shot was fired at a team of people who were trying to repossess a vehicle on California Avenue.

Sheriff's deputies have arrested two men and are searching for a third after they were allegedly involved in a shooting in unincorporated Monrovia on Tuesday.

A two-man car repossession team was fired upon while they attempted to take possession of a car in the 2100 block of California Avenue at about 2:53 p.m., Los Angeles County Sheriff's Lt. Edward Godfrey said.

Three men exited a home near where the car was parked while the repo men were trying to take the car, Godfrey said. One of the men was carrying a "long gun" and fired a round at the repo men, he said.

"When the repo team ran away, there were three suspects that chased him," Godfrey said.

Two unidentified men have been taken into custody and a third remains outstanding, Godfrey said. A search warrant was served at the residence but a gun was not recovered, he said.

San Gabriel Valley to Get Dunkin' Donuts

Dunkin' Donuts will be coming again  to Southern California and the San Gabriel Valley should get some of the sweet stuff.

The San Gabriel Valley will get some of the 45 Dunkin' Donuts stores to open in Los Angeles and Orange counties in 2015.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Danny and Coby Sonenshine of the Prell Restaurant Group will open 16 stores in central Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley.

Dunkin' Donuts also announced it will be setting up stands in other convenient places as well by the end of this year.

Earlier this year, the popular donut chain announced that it would be opening up about 350 new restaurants nationwide in 2013.

Amazon On Hiring Spree, Adding 5,000 Jobs, Many in SoCal

Amazon's recent hiring push hopes to fill full-time job positions for their warehouses, one of which is here in Southern California
Amazon said it is looking to fill more than 5,000 new full-time jobs at 17 of its fulfillment centers across the United States. That's roughly a 25 percent increase in full-time fulfillment center staff, which currently number more than 20,000 in the country.

According to the company, one of those 17 fulfillment centers is right here in Southern California, in San Bernardino.  The company's career page also indicates dozens of jobs are available in Irvine.

"The more than 5,000 jobs now available across the fulfillment network include picking, packing and shipping customer orders while engaging with high-end, state of the art technology," an Amazon press release about the hiring spree states.  "The jobs offer competitive pay, a comprehensive benefits package, company stock awards and bonuses."

Amazon has been building new fulfillment centers closer to customers in recent years as the company tries to speed up delivery of online orders and reduce shipping costs.

[Looking for a job in Diamond Bar or Walnut? Check our jobs page.]

Last year, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos used the front page of the company's website to announce a Career Choice program that pays thousands of dollars for warehouse employees to take technical and vocational courses in high-demand areas including engineering, information technology, transportation and accounting.

Amazon made its latest hiring push as President Obama is due to visit a company fulfillment center in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Tuesday to speak about jobs in the United States.

The President will discuss proposals to jumpstart private sector job growth and make America more competitive, according to a White House spokeswoman.

Westbound 60 in Walnut to be Closed Longer

An injury rollover crash stopped traffic in three lanes on the 60 Freeway in Diamond Bar July 31, 2013.

The carpool and far left lanes were going to be shut down until 4 p.m., the CHP reported.
Westbound traffic was reduced to three lanes in the Walnut/ Diamond Bar area, according to Caltrans.

A SigAlert was issued Wednesday afternoon following a rollover crash in which an eastbound truck crashed and overturned into the westbound 60 (Pomona) Freeway in Diamond Bar, ending up on its side and injuring someone, authorities said.

The crash near Grand Avenue was reported at about 12:45 p.m., prompting closure of the carpool and two left lanes, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Authorities reported that the center divider wall was damaged when the red pickup truck overturned.

At least one person suffered injuries, the CHP reported.

The SigAlert was to remain in effect for about an hour, or until about 1:50 p.m.



Aug 03, 2013 - 04, 2013

B.R.A.K.E.S Driving School

Location: Fairplex

FREE advanced driving training for teens that improves skills and confidence behind the wheel!
Training teenagers in 5 hands-on driving courses:
Wet Skid Pad
Panic Stop
Accident Avoidence

Sessions available:
8 a.m. - 12 p.m. & 1 - 5 p.m.

Visit for more information or to sign up


Aug 01, 2013

05:30 PM - 08:30 PM

Food Truck Thursdays

Location: Fairplex

Food Truck Thursdays at Fairplex
Put the frying pan away and join us for dinner on Thursdays. Enjoy a variety of the region’s most popular food trucks at Food Truck Thursdays at Fairplex. Food trucks roll in every Thursday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the lower admin parking lot next to the NHRA Museum, bringing the trendiest dishes on four wheels. Stop by and stay or grab a bite to take home. Don’t forget to pick up some fresh produce at the Farmers Market!
Now every Thursday through August 15, we have added a jumper for the kids!
FREE Parking
FREE Admission

Lower Administration Lot on McKinley Ave. Gate 1
Click here to download an application for a Farmer's Market booth space.
This week's trucks:

Time for a little train ride at "Ren's Garden Railroad"

Suicide Victim's Parents Sue Glendale School District

Parents of a 15-year-old boy who committed suicide at Crescenta Valley High School in February 2012 have filed a lawsuit against the Glendale Unified School District.
Parents of Drew Ferraro--a 15-year-old boy who took his own life at nearby Crescenta Valley High School--are alleging that Glendale Unified School District did not protect their son against bullying and harassment, according to The Glendale News-Press

The Ferraro family filed a $2-million claim against the district in July.
Drew Ferraro, 15, climbed the roof of a CVHS building and took a running jump to his death before his peers and school staff on Feb. 10, 2012.
According to the child's autopsy report, the student had a history of mental health problems. Medical examiners found traces of marijuana and Citalopram detected in the toxicology report. Citalopram, an anti-depressant, was found in Drew's system in amounts "consistent with therapeutic use.
His parents, John and Deana Ferraro, confirmed that their son was treated for depression and say that their son was bullied, The News-Press reported.
Sheriff's Homicide investigators told Patch in February 2012 that four suicide notes were left by Drew and these notes did not show evidence of bullying.
Click HERE to read the full News-Press report about the ongoing lawsuit.

Rescued Motorist in Angeles Crest Crash Was Dangling on Side of Mountain, Police Say

A vehicle drives about 450 feet over the side of the highway.

Two deputies from the Crescenta Valley Station rescued a motorist hanging on the side of a mountain in the Angeles National Forest Tuesday.
The deputies were flagged down by a group of motorists at 1:10 a.m. who said their friend's black Honda had possibly gone over the side of Angeles Crest Highway at mile marker 42, according to Sgt. Burton Brink of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

Organizing a search party, the deputies found the vehicle about 450 feet over the side of the highway, and both the driver and passenger had been ejected, according to Brink. The passenger was able to crawl to safety at a nearby gas station but the driver was dangling, according to Brink.
The Montrose Search and Rescue Team and the California Highway Patrol arrived to appraise the driver's condition. Deputies held onto the man for nearly 45 minutes before search and rescue team members were able to rappel down and save him, according to Brink.
The driver, a 21 year old Highland Park resident, suffered trauma and internal injuries and was airlifted to a hospital, and the passenger, also 21 from Los Angeles, was taken for treatment of possible internal injuries, according to Brink.
The deputies were treated for minor cuts and scrapes, according to Brink.

"Tea and Talk" at Greystone Mansion

Tea and Talk" is on the menu this summer at Greystone Mansion.

The monthly series, sponsored by the "Friends of Greystone," will feature tea and refreshments on the mansion's terrace and talks on the subject of interior design.
The topic for the month of August is "So Much to Pick from...Oh, my."

Victoria Reitz, co-founder of Design International, is scheduled to moderate the talk.
Vicky Swartz, a member of the Friends of Greystone’s Board of Directors, said the goal of the monthly series is "to introduce and share this magnificent gem as well as to raise funds to be utilized through the restoration and preservation of this historical property."
The organization aims to complete a remodeling project of the mansion’s kitchen in time for the Designer Showcase House, featuring the work of local interior designers, that will take place in November.
The topic for the September “Tea and Talk” event is "The Role of the Royal Mistress in the Design of Great French Palaces."
The next "Tea and Talk" will take place at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 25. The cost is $60 for non-members and $50 for members.
To make a reservation, call (310)286-0119, or send an email to

Farmer's Kitchen Provides Healthy, Local Alternative

The restaurant uses the produce from the Sunday Hollywood Farmer's Market.

The Farmer's Kitchen is a part of Sustainable Economic Enterprises of Los Angeles (SEE-LA), a producer of farmer's markets in LA County. The Farmer's Kitchen, at 1555 Vine St., opened in 2009 and uses the produce and artisanal foods from the Sunday Hollywood farmer's market.

L.A. Considering 2 Opposing Mural Ordinances

One would allow, and one would prohibit, murals on single-family homes.

The City Council's Planning and Land Use Management Committee advanced a mural ordinance to the full council Tuesday, bringing the city a step closer to lifting a ban on murals on private property.
The full council is scheduled to hash out the long-debated mural ordinance at an Aug. 20 meeting. The proposed ordinance defines murals as non-commercial works of art, distinguishing them from signs -- advertising goods and services -- that are subject to different rules.

City attorneys presented the committee with two versions of the ordinance -- one that would allow and one that would prohibit murals on single-family homes. The committee did not arrive at any recommendations on the issue, forwarding reports from the city attorney, planning commission and Cultural Affairs Commission to the City Council for further discussion.
City officials will also report back on a process for allowing individual communities to decide whether it wants to legalize murals for single-family homes.
Councilman Jose Huizar, who chairs the PLUM Committee, said the final ordinance would help restore Los Angeles' reputation as the "mural capital of the world."
-- City News Service

Actress Eileen Brennan, 80, Dies in Burbank

Funeral services were pending today for Eileen Brennan, the husky-voiced actress known for her Oscar-nominated role as a tough-talking drill instructor opposite Goldie Hawn in "Private Benjamin."
Brennan, 80, died Sunday in Burbank. Her publicist told The Hollywood Reporter the actress had been battling bladder cancer.

Her longtime local friend Sally Kirkland said, "She was my co-star in 'The Sting.' She was beautiful and brilliant. We pray for your soul's journey home to God and for your family."

A Los Angeles native, Brennan was a regular on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh- In" in 1968 before moving on to a series of guest appearances on shows including "All in the Family" and "McMillan & Wife."
In 1971, she appeared as Texas waitress Genevieve in "The Last Picture Show." Director Peter Bogdanovich went on to cast her three more of his films, including "Texasville" and "Daisy Miller."
Her other film credits included "The Sting," "Murder By Death," "Clue" and "The Cheap Detective."
In 1980, she portrayed Capt. Doreen Lewis, a hard-nosed drill instructor, opposite Hawn, who played an aloof society woman who joins the Army and finds it a more daunting challenge than she expected. Brennan earned an Oscar nomination for best supporting actress for her work in the film.
She reprised the role in a television series that lasted three years.
Brennan continued making sporadic television and film appearances, showing up on shows such as "The Love Boat," "Magnum P.I.," "Newhart," "Blossom," "thirtysomething" and "Home Improvement." She had recurring roles on "7th Heaven" and "Will & Grace." She earned Emmy nominations for her guest appearances on "Will & Grace," "thirtysomething" and "Newhart."
Her only Emmy win was in 1981 for "Private Benjamin."
Brennan was severely injured in 1982 when she was hit by a car in Venice after dining with Hawn. She broke multiple bones, and wound up with an addition to prescription pain pills that led her to undergo treatment at the Betty Ford Center.
"We have lost my old friend Eileen Brennan," Hawn wrote on her Twitter page today. "No one ever made me laugh more. Now I cry. Please keep singing darling from on high."

Studio City House Heralds Back to Mack Sennett Days

See a video from Joann Deutch's new book about Studio City. The official Los Angeles city records show that this thick-walled adobe house in Studio City, California was built in 1938. It is still used as a private residence. In the spring and summer the garden is a riot of colors. Early maps of Mack Sennett Studios show that this house was just outside the boundary lines of the 800 acres he bought to relocate his movie studio from Silver Lake to Studio City in 1927. It is possible that the house, and the property's ownership goes back to the Davis family who owned a ranch in this area before the 1900s. "Studio City - A Mile of Style, What's History, What's Gossip" is available on Amazon in paperback and ebook. Take a tour of Studio City when you plan your next visit to Universal CityWalk Hollywood. Bring your ebook version of my book and blaze your own adventure. We're 2.8 mile away. See more at:

Studio City's Mike Farrell Announces Call for Justice for Trayvon and State Prisoners

Actors Danny Glover and Mike Farrell will take part in a news conference in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday announcing their support of  "Hunger for Justice."
Farrell, a longtime Studio City resident and outspoken activist, will also be issuing a call for justice for Trayvon Martin and solidarity with state prisoners who are hunger striking in protest of solitary confinement.
The press conference will be in front of the downtown Federal Building, 300 N. Los Angeles St. at about noon.

Who Was Margaret Collier Graham

If the banners around town saluting Margaret Collier Graham have piqued your interest, here's just a taste of her remarkable life:

Margaret Collier Graham, whose books and stories of Southern California were nationally acclaimed in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, was considered “first lady of the foothills.”  She and her husband, Donald Graham, the first mayor of South Pasadena, were active in the cultural, social, and educational life of the new community. --Beverly Biber

Many of her books are not only still in print, but also available on Kindle, including "Stories of the Foot-hills," and "The Wizard's Daughter."

A woman of many talents, during the real estate boom of the 1880s (you remember that bubble, don't you?), she helped found and develop Wildomar and Lake Elsinore.

You can see this painting of Graham, up close and personal, at The Huntington Library.

Arcadia Middle Schoolers Launch Weather Balloon into Near-Earth Orbit

Students at Dana Middle School launched a weather balloon Tuesday that teachers expect to rise 80,000 feet high before popping and descending on a parachute.

The 6th, 7th and 8th graders built the balloon as part of the school's "Space Race" class, which is designed to challenge students interested in math, science, and engineering. Kids in th class have also built rockets, catapults and space suits, according to assistant principal David Paszkiewicz, who helped design the curriculum.

"The goal was to get kids really interested in science and technology to really take some risks," Paszkiewicz said.

The balloon is outfitted with two cameras and a GPS tracking device. It is expected to be airborne for about two hours.

"As soon as school is over a teacher and I are hopping in my car and driving over the hill hoping we can find it," Paszkiewicz said.

Students and teachers have been watching wind patterns for weeks and Paszkiewicz said they predict the balloon will land somewhere near Edwards Air Force Base.

Community Block Party and Resource Fair Happening Saturday

Food, classic cars, live music, kids entertainment, a giant slide and more will be at the 14th annual Pasadena event on Aug. 3

The Pasadena community, including local institutions and non-profits, will gather for the 14th Annual Community Block Party and Resource Fair Saturday.
Hosted by the City of Pasadena, Jacobs Engineering Group and Assemblyman Chris Holden, the event will have exhibitors like the Altadena Farmers’ Market, JPL Mars Rover, Humane Society and more.

Entertainment for all ages is planned, including a giant slide, puppet theater, reggae band, drum group, video game truck, classic cars and more.
See the flyer attached to this post for more details.
The block party and fair will take place Saturday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. in the 500 block of Jackson Street, Pasadena.

Local Officer Wants Thursday Blood Drive to Raise Awareness

Inspired by his father's fight against cancer, Lt. Mike Ciszek is helping to raise awareness about the need cancer patients have for blood donations by co-organizing a blood drive.

Often times, it takes a new experience to spark awareness of something you never had before, said Claremont Police Lt. Mike Ciszek said.
Over the course of the year, while watching his father undergo treatment for cancer, the lieutenant says he and his family became very aware of the need for blood.

“Cancer was always a word that if you don’t have anybody who is affected by it doesn’t necessarily mean a whole lot because it does not impact your life,” Ciszek said.

And the thought crossed his mind, how many others do not know about the need for blood. The realization spurred action. The Ciszek’s, with the support of family and friends in Claremont and surrounding cities, are hosting a blood drive to benefit the Cedar’s Sinai Medical Center Blood Bank.
Nurses and staffers with that hospital’s blood bank will set up inside Taylor Hall, 1717 N. Indian Hill, which is next to Claremont High School. Donors will be given a questionnaire as part of the procedure.
Donations will go to patients being treated at the facility. But more importantly, Ciszek hopes the blood drive will wake people up to the reality a lot of cancer patients face, he said.
His father, Walter Ciszek, a retired captain with Upland Police, successfully battled a first bout with cancer several years back. No blood was needed then, his son said.
But it returned this year with more ferocity and now, the family watches as he and other patients deal with regular blood transfusions or the need for platelets.
“We see with my father what a difference there is before and after,” Mike Ciszek said. His energy returns as does the color to his face, he said.
It’s life saving, Ciszek said. And there are dozens of people who need this that life saving blood everday, he emphasized.
“It would be great to see people come out like they did after 9-11,” he said. “They were lined up. But many people only come out after a disaster.
Anyone interested in donating blood is welcome to visit Taylor Hall from noon to 5:30 Thursday, Aug. 1. For more information, visit Keeping the GOOD in Our Neighborhood's Facebook page.

Citrus College President Named 27th Congressional District Educator of the Year

Courtesy of Citrus College
U.S. Representative Judy Chu of the 27th Congressional District has selected Dr. Geraldine M. Perri, superintendent/president of Citrus College, as Educator the Year. 
Dr. Perri recently received the award at Congresswoman Chu’s fourth annual DiverCities celebration, an event honoring the people, organizations, and businesses that foster and support cultural diversity in the cities and communities of the 27th District.

“I am profoundly grateful to Congresswoman Chu for choosing me to receive a DiverCities award,” said Dr. Perri.  “It is a privilege to be included among these outstanding community leaders who have dedicated their careers and their lives to serving others.”
DiverCities is a very special occasion to recognize the diverse leadership and volunteerism in the cities that make up the 27th District,” stated Congresswoman Chu.  “This event provides an opportunity to honor some of the outstanding and diverse businesses, volunteers and non-profit organizations in the San Gabriel Valley.”
Under Dr. Perri’s leadership, which began in 2008, Citrus College has witnessed the highest number of graduates in its 98-year history. The college has been recognized nationally in Community College Week’s annual “Top 100 Associate Degree Producers” and The Hispanic Outlook in Education’s “Top 50 Community Colleges” for awarding degrees. In addition, Dr. Perri led the college in its reaffirmation of accreditation.

“All the awardees were carefully selected from nominations that were submitted by members of the community,” Congresswoman Chu noted.  “The selected groups and individuals received this honor because of the amazing work they have done in their field as well as their dedication to the community and the San Gabriel Valley as a whole.”
Dr. Perri’s has worked in higher education her entire professional career. She served as president of Cuyamaca College in San Diego, vice president of instruction at San Diego Mesa College, and dean at Mt. San Jacinto College in Riverside County.  Dr. Perri began her career as a professor and later served as associate dean of academic affairs at her alma mater, Hostos Community College, City University of New York, where she earned an associate degree in dental hygiene.
She has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in health education from New York University, a master’s degree in organizational development, and a doctorate in human and organizational development from the Fielding Graduate University.
“The Citrus College community was thrilled to learn of Dr. Perri’s honor from Congresswoman Chu,” said Susan M. Keith, president of the Citrus Community College District Board of Trustees.  “Dr. Perri is a tireless advocate for higher education and student success—not only at Citrus College, but also at the regional, state and national levels.  I am very proud of how the college has thrived under her leadership.”

Stowaway Cat Survives Trip from Philippines to Industry With No Food, Water

Animal care officials say Pinay the cat is doing well, having survived without food or water on a sea journey across the world. Now, she needs a loving home.

A resilient kitty who survived a sea journey from the Philippines to the City of Industry with no food or water is said to be doing well at a nearby animal care centery and will be available for adoption soon, officials said.
County officials are looking for a home the 4-year-old domestic short-haired cat that survived an estimated three weeks without anything to eat or drink inside a shipping container on the 6,400 mile nautical journey.
"Pinay is doing well at the County of Los Angeles - Baldwin Park Animal Care Center and will be in the Department's care until she is ready for adoption," animal care officials said on Facebook Tuesday.
Workers who opened the container on July 16, which was shipped from Manila to a business in the 100 block of South Grand Avenue in the City of Industry, found the feline and called the Department of Animal Care and Control.

"The cat was very weak and frail," said Marcia Mayeda, the department's director. "It is amazing that this cat could survive the almost 6,400 nautical-mile journey by sea without food or water."    
The orange and white female has been named Pinay (pronounced "Pin- eye") by staffers at the Baldwin Park Animal Care Center's medical unit. Pinay is a common term for a female Filipino, according to DACC's senior veterinarian Dr. Maria Sabio-Solacito, a native Filipino.    
"We wanted to give her a name which kept her close to her roots," Sabio-Solacito said.    
Pinay has been getting stronger and putting on weight since she was discovered two weeks ago, and has just cleared her quarantine, Mayeda said.    
Animal care officials are reaching out to possible adopters, but warn that Pinay may be a bit skittish after all she's been through.
"It is important that potential adopters or foster families have considerable experience dealing with skittish cats," Mayeda said. "Pinay has been though a lot and needs a calm, loving family to help her transition."  
Interested adopters may email

– City News Service contributed to this report.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

This is a photograph of John Quincy Adams, the sixth US president, and the first to have his picture taken. I found it interesting.

                                 Sure enough, around 1843, John Quincy sat for a photo-op.

John Quincy Adams, Sixth President
                       This picture can date earlier, but no later than 1848, because that's when he died.

Unemployment fund depleted: State needs fix

Ren's Wayback


                                                        Pomona, CA Police

                                 Old Pomona Police Building, early 1950 era and before.
                           Police on the right side of the building as you look at the photo.
                                                It was located on Mission Blvd.    

NASA Releases Images of Earth by Distant Spacecraft

The Day the Earth Smiled
In this rare image taken on July 19, 2013, the wide-angle camera on NASA's Cassini spacecraft has captured Saturn's rings and our planet Earth and its moon in the same frame. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Claremont Council Members to Host Neighborhood Forum Tuesday

Two council members will meet with residents to discuss issue affecting neighborhoods and share information on city projects.

Have a question you want to ask a City Council representative or a concern you need to share?

Well, Claremont residents will get a chance to do just that at an informal question and answer session planned to Tuesday.  Two council members will meet with residents to discuss issues affecting the community and provide updates on city projects.

The Neighborhood Forum will be from 6 to 8 p.m. at the City Yard, 1616 Monte Vista.

RailGiants Train Museum Hours


RailGiants Train Museum is open on the second full weekend of each month. Our hours of operation are from approximately 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., during the summer months. RailGiants is located on the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona. During open days at RailGiants, visitors can walk around all locomotives and railcars and buy train souvenirs in our Depot Gift Shop. By walking up stairways into each giant locomotive, you can see into the cabs where engineers and firemen operated these large engines down the tracks of the nation’s rail network. Visitors are welcome to join us while maintenance and rehabilitation work is in-progress and ask our volunteer museum staff members any questions.
Admission to RailGiants Train Museum is always free. During the Los Angeles County Fair event, RailGiants is part of The County Fair and there is no additional cost to enter RailGiants after purchasing an admission ticket to The County Fair. Any donation to help maintain our equipment is optional, but always welcome. The excellent conditional of our historic railroad equipment is achieved by the generous donations of past visitors and the help of our volunteer members.
Please note: when the scheduled Sunday falls on Mother's Day or Easter, the museum will be closed on that Sunday.
Check the Event Schedule page for our current schedule of days and hours.
If you need to make arrangements to see RailGiants Train Museum on a day when we are not normally open, or for filming for television and motion pictures, please send us a message on our Contact Us page, or call the Museum Depot on 909-623-0190.

Rail Meetings

Join us monthly for updates, programs and visiting with your fellow members. Meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of the month at 7:30pm, except during the summer months. For the most up-to-date information about our schedule of meetings, please refer to our Event Schedule page, or our monthly newsletter, the Observation Platform (O.P.). Any questions, comments, or suggestions about our meetings? Sent us a message on our Contact Us page.
Our meetings are held in The Cowan’s Room, St. Edmund's Church in San Marino, near Huntington Drive and San Gabriel Boulevard.
Throughout the year, we educate and entertain our members, the rail-fan community, and anyone who is rail-curious about railroad history, rail transportation of today, and the plans for the future. Admission is free

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 – Rail Meeting 7:30pm

St. Edmund's Church – Cowan’s Room
1175 San Gabriel Blvd
San Marino CA
History of Railroad Passenger Advocacy
Presented by Paul Dyson

Tuesday night, Paul Dyson, president of Rail Passenger Association of California (RailPAC) will explain what role rail passenger advocacy groups perform in the development and improvements in passenger trains during the last 40 years.
Paul is also Chairman of the City of Burbank Transportation Commission.
Directions to St. Edmund's Church
From Interstate 210:
Take the San Gabriel Boulevard/Sierra Madre Boulevard exit. Go south (away from the mountains). The church is just over a mile south of the freeway on the right-hand side, just before Huntington Drive.
From Interstate 10:
Take the San Gabriel Boulevard Exit. Go north (towards the mountains). The church is 4 miles north of the freeway. Cross Huntington Drive and turn left into the parking lots.
The Cowan's Room is in a smaller building behind the main church and chapel buildings from the San Gabriel Blvd side.

2013 Meeting Topics

September 10, 2013
History of Railroad Passenger Advocacy
October  1, 2013
Vintage “stereographic” railroad photos
November  5, 2013
The Last Union Pacific Passenger Trains in Los Angeles
December  3, 2013
To be announced


SACRAMENTO--A resolution establishing August 6, 2013 as National Night Out in California was unanimously approved by the State Senate on Monday.  SCR 56 by Senator Norma Torres (D-Pomona) encourages Californians to participate in local National Night Out events.
“National Night Out fosters community involvement and gets citizens working together to build safer communities,” said Senator Torres. “As a former organizer, council member and mayor, I witnessed firsthand the power this event has on creating the collaboration necessary to improve neighborhoods.  I encourage all neighborhoods in California to participate in these activities.”
National Night Out began in 1984 as an effort to promote civic engagement and involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and to send a message to criminals that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.  National Night Out takes place annually on the first Tuesday of August.  Neighbors traditionally celebrate the occasion by hosting community BBQ’s or social events that are attended by fellow residents and law enforcement.
National Night Out has proven to be an effective, inexpensive, and enjoyable way to promote neighborhood unity and enhance community safety partnerships between community members and law enforcement.
Contact: Alex Barrios (916) 651-4757
- See more at:

Paul Krekorian Remembers Art Ginsburg of Art's Deli

Art Ginsburg, founder of Art's Deli in Studio City and a longtime supporter of L.A. Valley College and the entire community, passed away this week. The L.A. City Council adjourned its meeting in honor of Art's passing, with Councilmember Paul Krekorian leading the memoriam.

K-Rail Installation to Deliniate Expo Line Begins in Santa Monica

Once complete, the Expo Light Rail Line will travel along the center of Colorado Avenue in Santa Monica, according to Metro.

Major work of the Expo Light Rail Line is underway along Colorado Avenue in Santa Monica.
During construction, Colorado Avenue will be reduced to one eastbound and one westbound lane between 5th Street and 17th Street, according to Metro. The work is part of Phase 2 of the Expo Light Rail Line.
As part of the work, K-Rail will be placed along the center of Colorado Avenue to show the future route of the Expo and the work zones.
Once complete, the Expo Light Rail Line will travel along the center of Colorado Avenue, according to Metro. The route from Culver City to Santa Monica will stretch 6.6 miles with seven stations. The cost is estimated at $1.5 billion.

Hiking Group Learns About Native Plants at Rosemont Preserve

Attendees at a guided hike at the Rosemont Preserve learned about the food and medical value of local plants in Native American cultures from a La Crescenta resident and USC professor, according to the Glendale News-Press.
James Adams, the professor taught the group about various plants including yerba santa, mugwort and prickly pear.  From the story:

Leading them was James Adams, a La Crescenta resident who is an associate professor of pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences at USC and co-author of "Healing with Medicinal Plants of the West."
Adams' family traces back to 17th-century Virginia where they lived among the Native Americans, absorbing knowledge from traditional healers.
"The Indians kept my family alive," he said.
Last month marked the one-year anniversary of the purchase of the Rosemont Preserve, by the Arroyos & Foothills Conservancy, a local non-profit that works to secure land in the San Gabriel Mountains to protest it from development.  The group has held several guided hikes and trail restoration events in the last month in honor of the anniversary.

Spitz's Döner Kebab Headquarters Gets Top Marks

Southern California blog confirms that Spitz is king of the döner kebab.

A relatively new blog about food and travel in Southern California is the latest in a string of publications to confirm what many of have known for years—that Spitz, the restaurant on 2506 Colorado Blvd. started by two Oxy grads, really is king of the döner kebab.

Titled "Is It Any Good?" the blog offers this florid description of the "street cart döner," a lamb-based wrap: "It was, really, really good. It hit my mouth like a ray of spicy sunshine."

Click here to read more.

Court Overturns Murder Conviction Due to Unreliable Police Dog

Gilbert Aguilar was convicted of the 2001 murder of John Guerrero in La Puente.

A federal appeals court today overturned the conviction of Southland man found guilty of 2001 La Puente murder based largely on evidence detected by a police dog with a low success rate.
A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena ordered a Los Angeles federal judge to either release Gilbert Aguilar or grant him a new trial in the murder of John Guerrero.

According to the appellate panel, the prosecution's case largely hinged on evidence that Reilly, a Los Angeles Police dog, had "alerted" to Aguilar's scent on a stolen white Volkswagen that was found shortly after the murder.
Although Aguilar's fingerprints were not found in the car, Reilly's alert apparently confirmed the presence of the defendant's scent in the passenger seat, leading to his conviction, according to the appeals court.
However, the panel determined the verdict was unfair because prosecutors had failed to reveal to the defense Reilly's long history of questionable results.
Aguilar was convicted in 2006 of first-degree murder and sentenced to 50 years to life in prison in the death of Guerrero in La Puente.
"Reilly's scent evidence was the only evidence at trial linking Aguilar to the getaway car, as well as the only evidence corroborating strikingly weak eyewitness identifications," according to the opinion.
--City News Service

Senior Lunch Program

Join us for a healthy and delicious lunch! Seniors 60+ and spouse of any age. Suggested Donation: $1.75 For further information call (909) 620-2324

August 2013 Menu

National Night Out 2013


On Tuesday, August 6th, neighborhoods throughout the City of Pomona are being invited to join forces with thousands of communities nationwide for the “30th Annual National Night Out” crime and drug prevention event. National Night Out is sponsored by the Pomona Police Department, Community Programs Unit and the City of Pomona. We will join in the celebration with over 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases around the world. In all, over 37 million people are expected to participate in America’s Night out against Crime.
National Night Out is designed to: (1) Heighten Crime and drug prevention awareness; (2) Generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime efforts; (3) Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police community partnerships; and (4) send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.
Join us from 5:00 P.M. - 8:00 P.M. at 400 Civic Center Plaza (in front of the Library) in a FREE celebration that will include raffle prizes, entertainment, kid's games and crafts. All Pomona residents are encouraged to attend.
“This is a night for all of America to stand together to promote awareness, safety and neighborhood unity.”
Please contact out Community Programs Unit for any questions; (909) 620-2318.

Download the Flyer here

SCE Warns Customers of Scams

By City News Service

Southern California Edison warned its customers Thursday to be aware of a telephone-based scam in which the caller asks for immediate payment for supposedly past-due bills.
Impostors have been calling SCE customers and telling them they must pay past due bills immediately or have their electric service disconnected, according to the utility.

The callers demand payment via a prepaid cash card to cover their tracks.
Other forms of fraud involve customers being asked to buy prepaid debit cards. Callers ask for the debit card number and collect the value deposited on the card.

SCE customers have reported about 800 instances of phone scams this year. About 150 residential, and commercial customers have been victimized by some form of bill scam, with the incidents costing them an average of $800 to $1,000.
"We ask our customers to be alert to these calls that demand immediate payment and threaten service disconnection," said Marlyn Denter, SCE's manager of consumer affairs.
Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said her office and SCE have a common interest in protecting residents from financial crimes.
SCE, which provides electricity for 4.9 million Southern Californians not served by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, advises customers who suspect they are being targeted to ask for the caller's name, department and business phone number. If the caller refuses to give the information, customers should end the call and report what happened to police or SCE by calling (800) 655-4555.
SCE suggested the following tips for avoiding scams:
--  Never reveal credit card, ATM or calling card numbers (or PIN numbers) to anyone.
-- If someone calls and asks you to leave your home at a specific time for a utility-related cause, call the police. This could be a burglary attempt set up by the caller.
-- Be suspicious of anyone who arrives at your house without an appointment, asking to check an appliance, wiring or suggesting that there may be some other electrical problem inside or outside your residence.

Ballona Creek Bike Incident Downs Manhattan Beach Man

Manhattan Beach school board member Bill Fournell is home from the hospital recovering from wounds suffered when three men attempted to steal his bike in Culver City on the Ballona Creek Bike Path on July 19.
The incident left Fournell with a broken collarbone, broken ribs and punctured lungs and required five days in the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

Fournell's assailants, one of whom started the incident by throwing a bike into his front wheel, causing him to crash, have not been caught, according to Culver City Police. When Fournell crashed, one of the three assailants, described as juvenile male Hispanics, tried to steal his Litespeed road bike, he said. They engaged in a tug of war and the assailant relented.
Fournell told Patch he was grateful for the help of passersby who called 911 and stayed with him "as I could not talk and was barely able to breath due to the broken ribs and punctured lung," he wrote in an email.
Fournell rides his bike to and from his Farmer’s Insurance office in Mid-Wilshire two times a week, he said.
Though the incident has taken him off his feet, Fournell is looking at the brighter side. "I am pretty active and especially as a cyclist so being off my feet has kept me off the bike and missing time at the beach," he wrote. "Not sure when I'll be able to ride again. But all in all I am lucky as things could have been much much worse."
In his note, Fournell thanks the "friends, co-workers, and the community" who have been "so kind and generous to us during this time. Really makes you feel so grateful to live in a community like Manhattan Beach."
Fournell said he intends to return to work when his doctors clear him to do so, perhaps as soon as next week.

Venice’s Café Gratitude Gets Some FunnyOrDie Attitude

FunnyOrDie’s parody on the life-affirming café looks at what happens when you accidentally head for a meal at Café Attitude.

Cafe Gratitude, which has several restaurants across L.A., including one in Venice, boasts proudly on its website that it “does business through a practice we call “Sacred Commerce.” We view our restaurants as environments to not only serve healthy food, but also training grounds to practice seeing our lives from a perspective of gratitude.”

Now,  has created a spoof on the café, with its offering of Café Attitude.
Check out the video, and watch for an appearance by Chef Ludo Lefebvre, whom the Huffington Post points out, pokes fun at Red Medicine, another controversial restaurant in Los Angeles.

Bonin Helps Paint Facility for Veterans Organization

Westside City Councilman Mike Bonin visits New Directions in West L.A. to help promote the organization's mission in aiding homeless veterans.

City Councilman Mike Bonin visited veterans service organization New Directions in West Los Angeles Sunday morning to help paint the main gathering room at the organization’s facility.

“We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to our nation’s veterans,” said Bonin, adding that we may never be able to fully repay that debt, but he wants to help.

Bonin, who spoke frequently on his campaign about efforts to “move Los Angeles forward, do good and get things done,” sent an email to supporters last week, requesting they join him to volunteer on Sunday.

“This is the part where we do good,” Bonin wrote.  “I hope you can join me to support New Directions in its mission to help homeless military veterans.”

Since 1992, New Directions for Veterans has provided comprehensive services to thousands of veterans in Los Angeles County.

More than 600 men and women seek assistance from the agency each year, and as many as 220 veterans receive round-the-clock care at the organization’s five different residential treatment centers, including the West L.A. center.

For more information on New Directions, visit its website.