As the Los Angeles teachers strike enters its third day, parents not sending their kids to school (and most of us aren't: Recent stats indicate about 82 percent support the teachers' cause) may find themselves at an impasse in terms of how to keep the kids entertained and hopefully, in some small way, educated. This is not a vacation for our kids, and they should know that. Here are some options to keep them occupied.
Last month, 55 years to the day that Bob Baker opened the country's oldest continuously operating puppet theater, its landmark home on First Street downtown was closed to the public for good. Its pretty chandeliers were packed with care, its archives preserved and its enchanting puppets put to rest — but not for too long.
The current installation of about 50 ofrendas and Día de los Muertos–themed sculptural installations at downtown’s Grand Park is a heartfelt and homegrown public garden of flowers and art, altars and tributes, and monumental cultural stagings with the flair of the season and the relaxed vibe of a block party.
In collaboration with Self-Help Graphics & Art and Lore Media & Art, Grand Park between Grand Avenue and Spring Street now is home to some 50 altars and art installations created by local artists and community groups that reflect the theme "Looking to the Past to Build the Future." On view daily now through Sunday, Nov. 4, and absolutely free, the park will offer free guided lunchtime tours, which will highlight the artwork and discuss the traditions of the holiday.
An opening-night festival on Saturday, Oct. 27, not only showcased the art installations but also featured a music stage, food trucks (of course) and a huge, eclectic crowd of partygoers ranging from stroller-pushing families to rowdy hipsters in skinny jeans. A huge contingent of folks dressed both in general Halloween randomness and impeccable traditionalist attire enjoyed the works of artists, organizations and real families building altars side by side — from the intimate to the monumental.
There was no mistaking the profusion of signature orange marigolds, beloved for their spicy scent and luminous color. And there was even an unrelated but adjacent appearance by the Baby Trump balloon outside City Hall, courtesy of the Backbone Campaign, and also bright orange.
At least 700 marches, rallies and sit-ins are planned across the country on Saturday, June 30, to protest the ongoing illegal separation of children from parents. Currently more than 2,000 children are sequestered in prisonlike containment facilities (with less oversight then we give to the facilities housing the chickens that produce California eggs,) with no answer to when they might, if ever, see their parents again.
To kick off the Saturday protests, a rally and toy/clothing/basic necessities drive, organized by the nonprofit Women's March Los Angeles, was held outside City Hall on Thursday, June 28. Over and over again the speakers repeated the necessity to VOTE this November.
If you're interested in helping flip the House, go to the webpage firstname.lastname@example.org. This website helps people to volunteer, donate or otherwise work to flip vulnerable congressional seats, so if you live in a firmly blue area, you can help the cause elsewhere in the nation.
Currently on June 30 there are protests planned in Long Beach, downtown Los Angeles, Burbank, Pasadena, WeHo, Redondo Beach, Malibu, Claremont and Valencia. To get more information on a rally or march near you, go to moveon.org or click here.
All photos by Star Foreman
Follow her on instagram @starforeman
The confectionary pop-up attraction created by TLC’s Candy Queen Jackie Sorkin and fellow sweets fabricator Zac Hartog, now at the Santa Monica Place mall, has been extended through July 22. Sweet!
Culture Editor Lina Lecaro asked her dad to share his experiences and challenges as an immigrant boy growing up in L.A. and a Latino man raising a family in the City of Angels.