L.A. Weekly readers have nominated their favorite things in 100 categories, and the frontrunners have emerged, but tight races have developed and voting is still under way. You can vote now, online, for the shops, services, sports facilities and outdoor and recreational activities that will prevail as this year's Best of L.A. winners.
All you need to do is go to the L.A. Weekly Readers Choice page and start voting. And you still have time to add to the ballot your favorite spot, shop or service if you don't see it among the nominees — by creating an entirely new category and writing in your favorite. But do it now! Voting closes at 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 9, after which all saved ballots — the ones you choose to save — will be automatically submitted and tallied.
It's pretty fun, because we aren't talking about choosing between favorite dentists at L.A. Weekly when we say "Shopping and Services."
Which is your favorite bike shop? Right now, the bike category competition is fierce between Helen's Cycles, Golden Saddle Cyclery and Flying Pigeon L.A.
And let's be serious. Favorite dispensary category. Grace Medical Marijuana Pharmacy? Daddy's Collective? TreeTop L.A.? Hell, there are said to be several hundred, if not 1,000, dispensaries in Los Angeles. You have a very short window of time in which to have your say about which of these three is the best weed dispensary around.
And there's one category competition that could lead to violence — at least if you spout off about your preference on the wrong SoCal beach. Which kind of surfer are you? Val Surf? ET Surf? Mollusk Surf Shop? Rider Shack Surf & Skate Shop? Or ZJ Boarding House?
And are you going to be satisfied if the Best of L.A. bookshop, a struggle between the Last Bookstore, Skylight Books and Chevalier's Books, doesn't go to your hands-down favorite?
There's obviously a lot of regional and neighborhood rivalry for the 100 Best of L.A. categories, with the spa category fight unfolding between two firmly Westside locales versus much farther inland Larchmont. It's a battle between Burke Williams Day Spa, Larchmont Sanctuary Spa and SoSPA at Sofitel.
Another area of hot dispute in the Readers Choice voting for Best of L.A. is in the "Sports and Recreation" section of our category nominations.
We're not even sure what definitions you'd apply to choose the best dog park in all of Los Angeles. The one with the kindest, most helpful large dogs? With the most water dishes set out? The least airborne fecal matter?
Whatever your yardstick, if you have a dog, you probably have a dog park opinion. If so, please weigh in. The three top contenders are heavily weighted toward the more easterly side of town: Silver Lake Dog Park, Runyon Canyon Dog Park and Griffith Dog Park.
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Bicyclists grouse about everything, but they also celebrate a lot of things, including the best places to ride in Los Angeles. So which will it be? What's the absolute greatest route to ride your bike in Los Angeles?
The top choices are scattered from the Pacific Ocean to the San Fernando Valley to the Eastside, including L.A. River, Venice Beach, Ballona Creek Bike Path, Chandler Bikeway and the Metro Orange Line Bike Path.
But let's say the scientists are right, and a prodigious El Niño is soon going to turn Los Angeles into a watery hell. Think roof over your head. Think calming influence. What's the best yoga class in town? The leaders for Best of L.A. yoga studio are a study in cross-town rivalries, including YogaWorks, AuraYoga, Namaste Highland Park, One Down Dog and The Springs.
So jump in, everyone. That's just a small sample of favorite things to buy and do in Los Angeles. No reason your favorite things can't win.