Category: Mar Vista/Del Rey

Mar Vista’s Christmas House

Each December, David and Carol Gusman bring Santa to hundreds of local kids By Jessica Koslow Sitting comfortably one Saturday afternoon in mid-December in his Mar Vista home, David Gusman doesn’t look like Santa Claus. But in a few hours, that’s exactly who he’ll be representin’ — as he told one nine-year-old boy who questioned his authenticity. That was obviously the right thing to say, because the tough kid revealed to “Santa” what he wanted for Christmas, and his mom, who was standing to his side, gave Gusman a big thumbs up. Each December for the past four years,...

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Enterprising Teen Rallies Support for Safer Bike Routes in Del Rey and Playa Vista

Thanks in part to the work of one local student, more than 100 people recently joined L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin for an exploratory community bike ride around Del Rey and Playa Vista. As part of her sixth-grade Environmental Stewards Project earlier this year, 12-year-old Westside Neighborhood School (WNS) student Stella Vaughan-Verk wrote to Bonin about challenges for bicycle and pedestrian access in the area. The project, developed by WNS sixth-grade dean and science teacher Kaitlin Lester, has two guiding questions for students:  (1) How can I make a difference in my community? (2) What impact do my actions...

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Good News for Great Streets

City finally gets control of Venice Boulevard, paving the way for a pedestrian-friendly makeover By Gary Walker Mar Vista residents can expect to see a little more movement along Venice Boulevard next year — not increased vehicle traffic, but progress on streetscape improvements designed to get people out of their cars. The mile-long stretch of roadway between Inglewood Boulevard and Beethoven Street is part of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Great Streets Initiative to revitalize neighborhood commercial centers. Great Streets launched in 2014, but until recently the boulevard fell under the authority of Caltrans, not L.A. City Hall. Following...

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Fall for Mar Vista

The Mar Vista Community Council’s Fall Festival celebrates pets and families By Shanee Edwards The community of Mar Vista, nestled in the sweet spot between Palms and Venice, will hold its annual Fall Festival on Saturday, Oct. 22, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Mar Vista Recreation Center. Sponsored by the Mar Vista Community Council and the Festival Planning Committee, the event will focus on the people and pets that help to strengthen and inspire our Westside families. The festival provides opportunities for families to get active starting with a Family Yoga class at 10 a.m. led...

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Winning at the Game of Life

The Del Rey Cup makes community happen one goal at a time By Gary Walker Standing on a playing field in Mar Vista Gardens, Enrique Fernandez allowed himself to dream that a neighborhood soccer tournament could become a beacon for unity and revitalization. “I can remember thinking that if we could just get people to come and play soccer, that would be the start,” recalled Fernandez, who grew up in the public housing complex and now serves on the Del Rey Neighborhood Council. “If we could get people interested in coming to Mar Vista Gardens, we could get the...

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