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FREE ice cream tomorrow

Ben & Jerry's scoop shops are doing their FREE scoop day tomorrow (3/23) from noon to 8 p.m.



Nifty SoCal now has a Facebook fan page.


Kip Fulbeck's MIXED: Portraits of Multicultural Kids is opening and this Saturday at the Japanese American National Museum (in Little Tokyo), with Fulbeck also launching his new book for it. The entire day's admission has been set to pay-what-you-can. The day's schedule can be found here.

Tomorrow is also going to be a massive anti-war protest through Hollywood put on by ANSWER.

This weekend Long Beach's El Dorado Nature Center is pleased to announce the reopening of their trails that were closed for a restoration project on the streams.

NASA reports tomorrow's night sky is going to be gorgeous.

Free Pastry Day at Starbucks with the purchase of a drink on March 23. But it's like breakfast at McDonald's: the offer runs from opening to 10:30 a.m.

And on the not-so-nifty front. The District Weekly is folding. Next week's issue will be their last.

Dinner discount in honor of St. Pat's

95.5 KLOS FM just posted a deal on some select restaurants: get a $50 gift card for $13 (normally $25).


Enter the discount code "LUCKY" at check-out to get the markdown. Offer runs until 3/21, supplies limited.

2-for-1 Museum/Theatre admission

Through April 30 Discover the Arts Los Angeles is running 2-for-1 deals on select museums and institutions around SoCal.

The list includes:
- A Noise Within
- Aquarium of the Pacific
- The Colony Theatre
- Craft and Folk Art Museum
- The Grammy Museum at LA Live
- Hammer Museum
- Heritage Square Museum
- The Huntington Library
- Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
- Los Angeles Conservancy
- Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
- Mak Center for Art & Architecture - Schindler House
- Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) - on Grand and the Geffen
- Museum of Latin American Art (MoLAA)
- The Museum of Tolerance
- Pasadena Museum of California Art
- Redcat
- Skirball Cultural Center

The site also has the list of usual haunts that are FREE, but includes coupons for museum store discounts.

Angels Flight reopened yesterday

Angels Flight resumed service yesterday after being closed down for 9 years. I hitched a ride (25 cents each way).

So, the Westboro Baptist Church, famous for their pickets at military funerals, against homosexuals and Jews and just anything and everything American, came to Long Beach this weekend to protest the Jewlicious Festival, as well as the Ragga Muffins festival, a Martin Lawrence show at the Performing Arts Center, the Golden Dragon Parade in Los Angeles, and Wilson High School in Long Beach.

Pretty much a massive network of counter-protests developed against them, causing them to actually cancel and cut short several of their planned pickets.

I wrote a story about one of them here and here.

This same weekend was also Comic Expo, Long Beach Comic Con's one-day convention. My coverage for that is here.

Everyone else keeping busy these days?

Free Krispy Kreme donuts tomorrow

Just received this e-mail:

Come celebrate our 10 sweet years in Southern California. Visit one of our stores on January 16, 2010 and receive one free doughnut of your choosing all day long! Participating locations include:

• 4760 Los Coyotes Diagnol in Long Beach
• 1199 W. Artesia Boulevard in Gardena
• 4034 Crenshaw Boulevard in Los Angeles
• 4485 Mills Circle in Ontario
• 330 City Drive South in Orange
• 1548 Azusa Avenue in City of Industry
• 1521 North Victory Place in Burbank
• 4180 Clairemont Mesa Boulevard in San Diego
• 25802 El Paseo Avenue in Mission Viejo
• 1231 Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica
• 2305 Otay Lakes Road Suite 206 in Chula Vista

Birthday question

So my birthday's coming up and I really don't know what I want to do for it, other than maybe hit up the NuArt to see "Bitch Slap" (huge fan of Hercules and Xena and exploitation films and well, it looks insanely bad. I love it!).

I tend to go to really random places on my birthday. My last birthday we went to a sea monster playground, hung around Japan Arcade in Little Tokyo eating mochi, had rattlesnake sausage at Wurstkuche, and did grave rubbings at Evergreen Cemetery. For 2008, we did action poses at Vasquez Rocks, where Star Trek and many other things had been filmed, then visited the alien-themed Fry's.

Does anyone know of any odd, interesting, or nifty places within 50 miles of L.A. or Long Beach? I'd be willing to go further if it's REALLY cool.

Cheap would be best, but a fair admission is also good. Were it not $15 a person, I'd totally hit the Museum of Death.

Thanks, and I appreciate any suggestions.

Mythbusters seeking redheads

Saw this posting that was put up a couple hours ago:

"Mythbusters needs 25 NATURAL REDHEADS. 18yrs + & avail in SF 1/21 for 4 hours. No pay, but free T-shirt. Email linda_wolkovitch@beyond.com.au"

Though it's NorCal, still nifty if you're down for the trek.

Today, the Poxy Boggards are filming a music video for "I Wear No Pants" at the Complex in Hollywood. If you're interested in being an extra it's a 3:45 p.m. call time. More details on their Web site.

January 4 is your last chance to save $10 on SoCal Renaissance Pleasure Faire tickets. Right now they're going for $15 apiece.

On January 9, the faire is having an outdoor event at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood where from noon-5 p.m. the courtyard will be turned into an Elizabethan Link!

MOCA branches FREE through Friday

Sorry, just heard about this, but both the Grand Avenue and Geffen branches of the Museum of Contemporary Art are FREE through Nov. 20.



Metro extension opening this weekend

On Sunday, they're finally opening that light rail extension that goes by Little Tokyo and East L.A.

The L.A. Times has an article about all of the food now easily-accessible to public trans-dependent diners who aren't too familiar with L.A.'s buses.

Article here: Link!

Events will be happening from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Nov. 15. A Yelp entry says, "Union Station, Little Tokyo, Mariachi Plaza and E. LA Civic Center Stations will all have music, booths, and activities!"

Holy shi—.

And while we're on the subject, R.I.P. Shel Dorf. You really left a legacy, sir.

Farrell's opening in Mission Viejo

The old timey ice cream parlor is finally re-expanding in California, starting with one in Mission Viejo, opening Nov. 4.

Finish the Trough by yourself and receive a blue ribbon saying you made a pig of yourself at Farrell's.

More info: http://www.farrellsusa.com/locations-and-menus.php

Free and cheap Rocky Horror coming soon

Midnight Insanity, formerly of Long Beach's Art Theatre, but now of the historic Warner Grand in San Pedro, will be doing a FREE performance of The Rocky Horror Picture Show at Cal State Fullerton tomorrow (Oct. 28) at 8 p.m.

Not sure if parking will still cost you. If so, a day pass is $5.

The cast will also be performing a $2 show on Nov. 13 (Friday the 13th) at their home theater in San Pedro.

Dia de los Muertos celebrations

While I have the time at the moment, I thought I'd drop on this year's Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead events), especially since a couple are happening this weekend.


Oct. 24-25: L.A. Day of the Dead
$10 admission, takes place at Hollywood Forever Cemetery from 4-11 p.m.
MANY very detailed altars, lots and lots of art, people in costumes, MANY MANY people come to this one, Aztec dancers, performers, dancers, etc.

Oct. 24: Festival de la Gente
FREE admission, takes place in L.A.

Oct.30-Nov.1: Olvera Street's Dia de los Muertos festivities
FREE admission, takes place at Olvera Street in Los Angeles off the 101 Freeway at Alameda
Several altars, LOTS of people, Aztec and Folklorico dancers
More traditional, some people don't want things filmed (like getting blessed with incense).

Nov. 1: Bowers Museum Mexican Festival
FREE admission, takes place at Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, off the 5 on Main Street, not sure what they'll have this year.

Nov. 7: Noche de Altares: http://nochedealtares.org/
FREE admission, takes place in Santa Ana.

More events:

Nov. 1, plus workshops on other days: Self-Help Graphics in Los Angeles: http://www.selfhelpgraphics.com/blog.php?id=129

Going through early November: Folktree art exhibit: http://www.folktree.com/dod09press.html
The Folktree in Pasadena has an exhibit of altars in their back gallery every October/November. FREE to attend. Store is filled with Mexican art. Really cool. No celebrations, though.

A Mythbuster and a Crusher

Adam Savage and Wil Wheaton will be at the Largo, Oct. 21 with special guests from "The Guild." $25.

Link: http://www.paulandstorm.com/gigs/w00tstock/

Star Tours overhaul

Where have you been?Collapse )

The only days I have off are Friday and Saturdays, and last week they were consumed by Disney with their D23 fan expo in the Anaheim Convention Center.

Short review of it, as it was their very first year trying to pull together a convention like this: if a panel is supposed to start at 3, DO NOT spend two hours having people check their cameras, cellphones, laptops, recorders, keys, pens, etc and then have them wanded with a metal detector, ending up with your panel starting at 5. Imagine the spectacle of 900 people trying to get their stuff back following the presentation. Ugh...

And no omg-major panels on Saturday, what's that all about? I thought it was common con sense to have your main attractions on that day. It was a valiant first attempt at a con, and there were many rookie mistakes I thought Disney would avoid, but they tragically didn't.

Anyway, at the con, they had a presentation regarding changes they'll be making to their parks around the world. The Magic Kingdom in Florida's getting its Fantasyland expanded so that you can visit the princesses in their own worlds. Disney Hong Kong's getting three new lands. Disney Cruises is getting two new ships. California Adventure is getting a huge area themed entirely after the Pixar movie "Cars."

But to finally cover what they're doing for the park that started them all... they're changing Star Tours.

No more trying to reach that moon of Endor and accidentally winding up in a battle between X-wings and TIE fighters and being there when the Death Star was destroyed. No... you're in a pod race.

Check it out:

Press release and the video: here.

Manga sale this weekend

Meltdown Comics in L.A. is having a huge manga sale this Saturday and Sunday with prices set at $1 per manga.

(Check the website for band descriptions & theatre listings or call 213.368.2728)

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 17  -   Free Concert at Hancock Park
Wine Pavilion & Yammy Mexican Food Vendors and arts on Site
7:30 PM - Conjunto Hueyapan
8:30 PM - Banda Santa Rosa

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18 - Free Concert at Hancock Park (Park located between LACMA & the Page Tarpit Museum, 5800 block of Wilshire, Parking can be accessed off S. Curson Avenue) 
Wine Pavilion & Food Vendors on Site
7:30 PM - Viola Trigo
8:30 PM - Oscar Chavez

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19 - Opera, Orchestra & Mariachi at Zipper Hall 
200 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles   
8:00 PM     Tickets $42/$36
Baja California Orchestra with Special Guests Fernando de la Mora and Olivia Gorra (plus a late addition - a surprise Mariachi band)  
Tickets  may be purchased at www.vivamexicofestla.com and will be held at Will Call.   Check Zipper website for directions & parking instructions. www.zipperhall.com

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 20 -  Free Closing Concert at California Plaza (Grand Performances) 
7:00 PM  Omar Torrez! (http://omartorrez.com)
8:15 PM  Kinky

The press release:

Viva Mexico Festival LA is sponsored by The Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles in conjunction with The Tijuana Cultural Center (CECUT) and The Baja California Cultural Institute.
In Celebration of the 199th Anniversary  of Mexican Independence, Viva Mexico Festival LA To Showcase the Very Best in True Mexican Culture; Five Day Program to Feature Classical and Contemporary Music Concerts, Theatrical Performances and Documentary Film Series

Los Angeles, August 20, 2009 -- In celebration of the 199th Bicentennial Celebration of Mexican Independence, the Viva Mexico Festival LA will introduce and showcase the rich cultural and artistic works unique to Mexico to Los Angeles audiences from September 16-20th, 2009.

A co-presentation of The Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles and The Tijuana Cultural Center (CECUT) and The Baja California Cultural Institute, the five-day festival will feature the very best of Mexico’s arts and culture in the areas of opera, classical and contemporary music, theatre and film.

“We are very proud to bring “Viva Mexico” to Los Angeles. During this weeklong celebration, the Angeleno community will be able to experience the artistic and cultural heritage that Mexico has to share in the areas of music, theater and film," said the Honorable Juan Marcos Gutiérrez-González, Consul General of Mexico in Los Angeles. "The 199th celebration of Mexico’s Independence Day is a great occasion to kick off this wonderful display of Mexican culture throughout our great city of Los Angeles."

Highlights of the elaborate, multi-faceted program,  include:

  • Classical evening featuring Olivia Gorra’s West Coast debut,  as well as performances by Fernando de la Mora and Baja California Orchestra;
  • Outdoor music concerts with performances by Kinky, Conjunto Hueyapan, Omar Torrez,  Banda Santa Rosa, Viola Trigo and Oscar Chavez  Y Los Morales; as well as 11 theatre presentations with very special celebrity guests.

Most of the events are free to the public.   Venues for the events include Zipper Hall,  Hancock Park next to LACMA, California Plaza and the LATC (Latino Theatre Center). The full schedule and updates regarding Viva Mexico Festival LA can be found at:  www.vivamexicofestla.com or call the public information # 213.368.2728.

Thursday, October 1, 2009 - 7:30 PM

The Broad Stage
1310 11th St.
Santa Monica, CA


Please join Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) for a moderated panel discussion on Chagas disease, a forgotten illness that threatens over 100 million people throughout the Americas.

Between 8 and 15 million people are already infected with Chagas, and thousands die each year from the disease.

100 years after the discovery of the disease, few of the millions of patients needing treatment for Chagas are ever diagnosed or receive treatment. When they do, they are treated with drugs that are known to be toxic. In addition, no pediatric formulation is currently available, even though the acute form of the disease primarily afflicts children.

Chagas is caused by an infection of Trypanosoma cruzi, a deadly parasite that is passed to humans through the bite of the vinchuca bug (also known as the chinche, barbiero, assassin, or kissing bug). The disease primarily afflicts poor, marginalized populations in the 21 Latin American countries where the disease is endemic, but due to population flows, Chagas is increasingly present in urban habitats, as well as in non-endemic countries in North America and Europe.

The discussion will be moderated by award-winning journalist Julio Cesar Ortiz, Univision 34 News Reporter. On stage will be three experts in the field; Dr. Tom Ellman, a physician who heads MSF’s Chagas treatment and prevention program in Bolivia; Dr. Sheba Meymandi, Director, Center of Excellence for Chagas Disease, Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, the only treatment program for Chagas disease in the United States; and Dr. Bernard Pecoul, Executive Director of DNDi, a non-profit pharmaceutical research and development organization working to develop new and improved treatments for some of the world’s most neglected illnesses, including Chagas.

Dr. Ellman will share MSF’s experience treating Chagas in Bolivia and discuss ways to scale up in endemic countries, while Dr. Meymandi will share her experience treating people in the LA-area for Chagas. Dr. Pecoul of DNDi will discuss the challenges in developing new treatments for Chagas disease.

This event is free, wheelchair accessible, and open to the public.

Auctions of interest!

Some steampunk, gothic and BPAL items for your pleasure: shop.ebay.com/scarletminded/m.html

LBC aquarium has tiger shark

First-Ever Tiger Shark at the Aquarium of the Pacific

The Aquarium of the Pacific is excited to have a tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) on display for its first-time ever. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see this amazing five-foot predator. Few aquariums have had tiger sharks, and today only two other aquariums in the U.S. are home to these awesome predators.

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ABC is doing an open casting call for Wipeout contestants.



World famous reality television producer Endemol USA (that brought you Fear Factor, and Deal or No Deal,) is casting more episodes of the television hit WIPEOUT. In each episode, 24 contestants compete to win $50,000 while conquering the world's largest obstacle course.

You don't need to be an athlete to participate.

Read more...Collapse )

More casting calls listed on the site linked above.

Camel milk ... it does a body good

Yesterday, I wrote about a camel dairy near San Diego that also made their own soap.

Today I'm amused to write that we here in California can expect to try Al Nassma, a camel milk chocolate company based out of Dubai (the only chocolate of its kind), in the near future.

The company is expanding into the United States and Japan where they are "planning to open outlets in California, New York and Tokyo in the next months."

Camel's milk is said to be very rich in vitamins B and C, contain less lactose, and consuming it helps fight and prevent diabetes.

Still nothing beats the conclusionary graf to that Gulf News article: "A sip of genuine, pure camel milk provides the taste buds a light and clear impression of freshness, then lays a breeze of pleasant mealiness on the tongue and leaves a mystical, very light bitterness at the finish."

Hehe, wow.

If only I had the cash...

If you know me, or heck if you've been following the community for enough time, you'd know I was a sucker for roadside attractions, odd but fascinating experiences, and animals of every shape and size.

What follows are several things I wish I had the time and money to visit right now. Hope these'll be fun for those of you who can go.

Albino dolphin spotted by Capt. Dave's Dolphin and Whale Safari.

All year round, Capt. Dave's Dolphin and Whale Safari takes you off the coast of Dana Point to see hundreds of dolphins and other marine mammal life, including a rare albino dolphin the crew have named Casper (photo above). This will give you an idea of what you see month by month. $55 adults, $35 for children under 12.

At San Diego Wild Animal Park, you can wake to elephant roaming by your tent or listen to the sound of African wildlife with their Roar & Snore Sleepovers. Great for the family, but they also offer Adult Only nights. Enjoy cocktails while camping. The whole program only goes until November with reservations required. Prices vary depending on the package you get.

Far too rich for your blood? For $90 a person, you can take their Photo Caravan Safari. Get up close the animals. Take pictures. Feed them. Make your friends envious.

Looking for an animal adventure of a different.. ahem.. flavor? Get a mouthful of camel's milk at Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona. Featured on Discovery Channel's Dirty Jobs, they've actually got a public tour coming up on Aug. 23. $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $7 for kids. While you're there pick up a bar of Camel milk soap.

One night with an inglorious basterd

On Aug. 20, 8 p.m., Amoeba Music in Hollywood will host a screening of Inglorious Basterds, plus signing and meet-and-greet with Quentin Tarantino.

Being among the first 300 purchasers of the $30 package, you'll get a copy of the soundtrack, a guaranteed place in line for Quentin to sign one item of your choice, and a ticket to the midnight screening of the film at the Arclight with a live intro by Quentin.

The $30 ($35 if you want to opt for a vinyl copy of the soundtrack) packages go on sale at 10:30 a.m., Aug. 18.


Looking to the weekend to save me...

OK, so here's that list of shiz for this weekend. Wish I could go. :(

It's Nisei Week in Los Angeles. Starting tomorrow, it's the Tanabata Festival in front of MOCA in Little Tokyo. The rest of the Nisei Week schedule can be found here. Parade on the 16th.

Also, Friday through Sunday
Watermelon Festival
in Sunland, $1
Vampire-Con 2009 in Los Angeles, $7 per movie, $20 all-day admission, $35 Vampirella Ball

Friday and Saturday
Planetarium show at Glendale Community College, $10 adults
Tiki Oasis 9 in San Diego, tickets available for Fri-Sat: $40

Just Friday
Brea Fest in Brea, FREE, Tasting tickets $3 each
Shock Treatment (the forgotten sequel to Rocky Horror) shadowcasted by Sins o' the Flesh in Santa Monica, $10
"H2O" opening reception at G2 in Venice, FREE (6:30-9 p.m.)

Sarah's Smash Shack's 1st year Anniversary Party, 50%off all breakables, smash your cell phone or PDA for FREE
Shaun of the Dead zombie walk in Los Angeles, $10 (Seth Grahame Smith, the author of "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" will be there)
Santiago Art District art walk in Santa Ana, FREE
Zap Mama performing in Los Angeles, FREE
L.A. Sake Fest in Hollywood, $50, $30 on Goldstar (the festival is only going from 8-11 p.m.)
Swingin' on the Promenade in Anaheim, FREE
Samoan Festival in San Diego, FREE
Abney Park (steampunk band) playing at the Knitting Factory in L.A., $20
AR+BQ Art Faire in Venice (at someone's house), FREE
Bleu Clothing Semi-Annual Sale in Los Angeles

Gnosh Pit (Vegan BBQ) in Los Angeles (pulled "pork" sandwiches, handmade curry seitan bahn mi, beer popsicles. CASH ONLY!)
Taco Day and sale at Old Road Harley- Davidson in Santa Clarita, FREE to go down there, not sure what tacos will cost
Los Angeles Comedy Festival at Theatre Asylum, $10
"Steeped in History: The Art of Tea" exhibit opening at Fowler Museum at UCLA, FREE

LACMA's putting out a call for comics

Are you a comic book artist with a superhero storyline that takes place in Los Angeles? The L.A. County Museum of Art is looking for you.

Create Your Own Superhero or Villain

"This fall LACMA will open Heroes and Villains: The Battle for Good in India’s Comics, an exhibition that will draw connections between ancient Indian epics and contemporary India’s booming comic book industry.

In conjunction with this show, we want to see your original storyline and characters for a superhero comic set in Los Angeles. Send your submissions, including a one-page synopsis of your storyline, character designs and/or storyboards to unframed@lacma.org by September 15, and we’ll post the best here on Unframed on October 19, the first week the show is open.

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Jabberwocky battle
The spectacularly nifty

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