Beach curfew should be lifted

Re: “Bonin draws line in the sand over Venice Beach boardwalk chaos,” news, Aug. 7

Councilman Mike Bonin only presents half the story to make his case about Venice Beach. The hard and strong language regarding law enforcement could be better phrased. Robust, prepared, or resilient are all better words to describe those who protect us all. Or, understanding and kind, as was the case when state troopers in Ferguson, Mo., brought peace to a chaotic situation.

The city is violating the state Coastal Act by preventing access to the beach at night. The act implements and mirrors the U.S. Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, which governs access. The City Council has abused the general plan for the beach/park for decades. Only the director of that agency can implement a curfew there — temporally, and only for juveniles pursuant to agency regulations.

Article X of the state Constitution guarantees access to public trust lands at night. Yet, Mike Bonin supports the Los Angeles Municipal Code Section 63.44(B)(14)(b). Any law abiding citizen can be arrested, fined and jailed in this city for simply accessing the beach at night for a peaceful walk under the moonlight. The beach belongs to all of us.

John Davis
Westchester

Crowd control lacking at Flack concert

Re: “Love is a song,” this week, Aug. 14

The Roberta Flack concert on Saturday night was awful in that there was zero crowd control. Even those in uniform kept saying they couldn’t do anything about it. It was so unfair to those of us who waited hours to see Roberta, only to have a sea of people stepping right in front of us to “take pictures” until we screamed loud enough that they might move. More likely we got the finger.

We left mid-concert — the five of us couldn’t stand it anymore.

The sidewalk should be blocked off from the bottom of the hill and also at the top of the hill closest to the water. People can just take the back side around.

Our charming Marina is gone and the traffic-jammed, impolite and rowdy throngs have taken over. So sad.

Mary Jo Durand
Marina del Rey

MdR Symphony is a local treasure

He did it again! Maestro Frank Fetta conducted another unforgettable performance at Burton Chace Park. A program highlight was “Rhapsody in Blue” withy the gorgeous Russian pianist Yana Reznik as soloist. The audience would not let her go and twice she played encores.

The park is magical: a flaming sunset, boats gliding past with seagull “passengers” hitching a ride for a free cruise, the early arrivals spreading their picnic suppers on the grass. I love to see the wide-eyed children enchanted by the music, and the sprinkling of family pets are perfectly behaved (not one bark).

There are often some whimsical surprises: the good-humored maestro circling stagehands wrestling with the huge piano, loyal emcee Rich Capparela’s familiar voice broadcast in from a distant location, a surprise guest appearance by a “Star Wars” celebrity (now there’s a “selfie”) and, at the end, the chance to mingle with — even hug — these gifted musicians.

Every summer these concerts are a gift to the Marina del Rey community and I am so grateful to the network of wonderful people who provide it.

Tonight’s program features mega-star Bernadette Peters. Who needs the Hollywood Bowl?

Eileen E. Porch
Del Rey

READER COMMENTS AT ARGONAUTNEWS.COM:

Re: “Venice Beach lightning strikes prompt beach safety review,” news, Aug. 14

What type of weather info is available to the lifeguards along the beach? A public announcement system would allow lifeguards to warn beachgoers of approaching weather.

L. Scott

I was on the beach that day, July 31, and no one left the beach because no one was informed as to what was actually happening. I did not witness a single lifeguard notify anyone to get out of the water and, even if they tried, they are ill-equipped to do so effectively. The handheld PA system they use to direct swimmers and surfers is as much use as a chocolate fireguard. Lifeguards need better equipment and they need a better PA system. However, they should also be there to warn people to get out of the water if a possible lightning storm is imminent.

As for having a full-time employee to man a PA system, you have a lifeguard operation center at Venice — why can’t they do it in conjunction with each lifeguard tower and the eyes and ears of each lifeguard on the beach? Why add another variable? Just expand lifeguard duties.

As far as the firefighters having trouble getting to the beach because of traffic, there was an ATV fire patrol unit on the beach and there were also lifeguard paramedics. That should be able to do just as much.

Steve

Re: “Bring back Bar Harbor walking path,” letters, Aug. 7

We miss the Bar Harbor walking path now blocked by fences covered with blue plastic. Closing it is bad for business at the restaurants close to Mother’s Beach and, of course, the Thursday farmers market at Mother’s Beach. Will public access continue to be denied once the construction is finished, whenever that may be? Is there anything anybody can do about it? If the redevelopers spent a little time and money to provide a temporary access, it would be a start in improving their public image.

Brian Cashion, Marina del Rey

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