Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Dear community,

The events below go far in showing why Los Angeles is such an amazing city. ;) There are a bunch of interesting, stimulating, world and mind changing events coming up and they are mostly free, though some have suggested donations.

Events include talks (through American Friends Service Committee and Zocalo Public Square), Earth Day events, CicLAvia, free tomato growing class, a play inspired by Homegirl Cafe homegirls, info on preparing a toxic free funeral for your loved ones, and more.

Events listed run through the end of the month. Enjoy!


What: Friends Peace Dialogue - "The Transition Movement: From Oil Dependency to Local Resiliency"

Hosted by: American Friends Service Committee

When: Thursday, April 12, 7:00 - 8:00 pm

Where: AFSC Office, 634 S. Spring St., 3rd Flr., Downtown Los Angeles, 90014

Join the AFSC in Los Angeles for a timely discussion on the Transition Movement. The Transition movement is a grassroots response to a number of global changes including peak oil, climate change, and economic stability. The movement recognizes that change must happen within every aspect of our society. Here in Los Angeles, there are various local groups creating and participating in a wide variety of Transition movement activities, including organizing workshops on repurposing old clothing, chicken hutch building, bicycle repair, designing solar cookers and building community gardens. The Transition Movement goes far beyond "going green" but into root level and local change based on individual empowerment.

Notes: (Event occurs during downtown Artwalk night. Parking available at Joe's Parking lot on Spring and 5th St., or take public transit -- Pershing Square exit off of the Red Line is 2 blocks away.)

Cost: free!


What: Free tomato growing class! 'Tis the season!

When: Saturday, April 14, 9-11 am

Where: At all Armstrong's Garden Center locations

Grow your own tomatoes! They taste way better than store bought, contain more nutrients (you can pluck them when they are ripe, not weeks before like store bought), they won't have pesticides, they won't be shipped from some far away place like China, and they are YOUR beautiful babies! Head out to this class if you can, it is free and depending on where you go, they will teach you organic growing methods. It doesn't matter if you don't have a garden - you can grow in a container on a patio, or anywhere that you get good sun.

Cost: free!


What: CicLAvia

When: Sunday, April 15, 10 am - 3 pm

Where: Along over 10 miles of Los Angeles streets! From east of the LA bridge to Little Tokyo to City Hall, down Spring St. to 7th, all the way to Melrose and Heliotrope! For a map, click HERE.

Ciclovías started in Bogotá, Colombia, over thirty years ago as a response to the congestion and pollution of city streets. Now they happen throughout Latin America and the United States. Connecting communities and giving people a break from the stress of car traffic. The health benefits are immense. Ciclovías bring families outside of their homes to enjoy the streets, our largest public space. In Los Angeles we need CicLAvia more than ever. Our streets are congested with traffic, our air is polluted with toxic fumes, our children suffer from obesity and other health conditions caused by the scarcity of public space and safe, healthy transportation options. CicLAvia creates a temporary park for free, simply by removing cars from city streets. It creates a network of connections between our neighborhoods and businesses and parks with corridors filled with fun. You can walk, bike, skate, skateboard, dance, rollerblade, anything goes except automobiles!

Cost: free!


What: Sacred Crossings: Bringing Funerals Home -- Integrating death into the cycle of life with joy! with Rev. Olivia Barham

When: Friday, April 13, 2012 at 7:30 pm

Where: L.A. Eco-Village - 117 Bimini Place, Los Angeles, CA 90004

Did you Know?

*You can delegate a family member to act as your funeral director?
*Embalming is not required by law?
*The body of your loved one can lie in honor at home for a 3-day vigil?
*You can create, decorate and transport a casket to the place of disposition?

Are you, or someone you love preparing to make their final transition? Or would you like to opt out of the toxic funeral industry by planning ahead, no matter what your age is or the condition of your health? Or make sure that your loved ones know what your wishes are about your final journey? If you would like to learn more about your options for creating a deeply meaningful, Green and affordable wake and funeral in the comfort and privacy of your own home, then join our intimate gathering as we discuss the legalities and logistics of Home Funerals and our options for Cremation, Burial and Green Burials. Sacred Crossings educates, inspires and empowers families to reclaim the lost art and ancient ritual of a Home Funeral.

We will view films of home funerals and Green burials - your discretion is advised.

Notes: Reservations required: email crsp [at] igc [dot] org or call 213-738-1254

Cost: Fee: $10 - $15 (sliding scale)

What: Zocalo lecture - Can Diverse Societies Cohere?

When: Friday, April 13 at 7:30 pm

Where: Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), 250 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA

Although the world is getting smaller, our divisions are increasing. Communities that used to be alike in religion, ethnicity, language, or income have begun to diverge along these lines. Because people naturally avoid engaging with those unlike themselves, modern society has become increasingly fragmented. And yet some communities manage to bridge the divides, to cohere despite the odds. It’s through cooperation that such achievements are possible, and cooperation, argues Cambridge University sociologist Richard Sennett, is a craft. Sennett, author of Together: The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation, visits Zócalo to discuss why, in a diverse society, cooperation is a craft that can—and must—be learned.

Notes: RSVP online to attend.

Parking $9 at the Walt Disney Concert Hall garage. Enter from Second St., just west of Grand Ave. Or take public transit - exit Civic Center off of the Metro Red Line.

Cost: free!


What: Zocalo lecture - Is Eating Well Just for the Rich?

Sponsored by: KCRW

When: Thursday, April 19 at 7:30 pm

Where: Goethe-Institut Los Angeles, 5750 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA

Some of us are eating better than ever. But most Americans still live in a fast food nation. The number of U.S. farmers’ markets has nearly doubled, but at least 88 percent of Americans fail to consume the recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables. Over 1 million people tune into the Food Network each night, yet 14 million people live in food deserts at least a mile from a supermarket. What would it take for us all to eat well? Journalist Tracie McMillan, author of The American Way of Eating: Undercover at Walmart, Applebee’s, Farm Fields and the Dinner Table, spent a year working and eating with the people at the bottom rung of the food service industry to try to find out. She visits Zócalo to discuss what’s keeping Americans from getting the food they want and what we can do about it.

Notes: RSVP online at: http://zocalopublicsquare.org/rsvp/index.php?event_id=524

Cost: free!


What: Cafe Vida -- a theatrical play!

Sponsored by: Produced in partnership between Cornerstone Theater, Homeboy Industries and Homegirl Café. Community partners include Hunger Action LA, Solano Canyon Community Garden, and the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute at Occidental College.

Where: The Los Angeles Theater Center, 514 S. Spring. St., Los Angeles 90013

When: Thursdays - Sundays from April 26 - May 20. From Thu-Sat it takes place at 8pm, with Sunday matinee at 2 pm

Acclaimed playwright Lisa Loomer pens the first production in Cornerstone Theater Company’s Hunger Cycle with an original work, Café Vida. Chabela and Luz are two rival homegirls ready to leave the gang life and begin anew at Café Vida, the only place in the city that gives young women and their shady pasts a genuine second chance to start a new life free of violence. It’s here that these former enemies pull themselves up by their shoelaces, maintain a steady diet of self-respect, learn to compost, tend a garden, julienne an onion and take your lunch order with a smile and a heaping side of transformation.

Notes: Café Vida is the first play in Cornerstone Theater’s recently launched Hunger Cycle, a series of nine world premiere plays investigating the universal and urgent need for food and how filling that need has the power to transform individuals and communities.

Cost: $20 advanced purchase online, pay what you can at the door (accessible to all).


What: Earth Day South LA

Sponsored by: Community Services Ltd., Normandie Avenue Elementary School, Los Angeles Conservation Corps, City Year, Guerilla Food Not Bombs, Earlez Grille, Steel Deck, VegFund, WORKS USA, Offices of Mark Ridley-Thomas, USC Office of Civic Engagement/University Neighbor Outreach and others. Booths featuring: Hunger Action LA, Community Build, Community Coalition, LA Community Action Network, Garden Gateway, TreePeople.

When: Saturday, April 14, 11am to 4pm

Where: Normandie Avenue Elementary School, 4505 S. Raymond Ave, LA, CA 90037. At the corner of Normandie and Vernon.

Community Services Unlimited and numerous partners and sponsors will hold the 4th annual Earth Day South LA Festival, an educational, fun and safe event for the whole family. Join us as we celebrate our collective vision for a more vibrant and earth-friendly South Los Angeles with this year's theme - air - visible throughout the event. Participate in service projects, all day activities for kids, cooking demos and workshops including gardening with natives, recycled art and yoga.

Cost: Free, though there is a suggested donation of $5 or more. No one turned away for lack of funds


What: Topanga Earth Day Festival

When: April 21st and 22nd, 10 am til sundown

Where: At the Topanga Community House Fair Grounds, 1440 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga, CA 90290

Authentic musical performances, guest speakers, ecological artists, innovative environmental demonstrations, non-profit organizations, yoga, biodegradable & sustainable solutions, products and services, alternative energy, healing arts, primitive skills & living by example workshops, organic food & beverages, a free bio-diesel shuttle, composting, water conservation, and native planting for all ages and all cultures.

Notes: The Love and Haiti Project, Kids Make A Difference

Cost: $12 suggested donation

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