Firefighters make animal rescues in PetCo fire

More than 80 Los Angeles city firefighters responding to a fire at the Westchester PetCo on Sepulveda Boulevard rescued 12 dogs, more than 15 hamsters and several snakes last week.

No people or animals were injured in the fire, which broke out at about 5:15 a.m. on April 30, said Los Angeles Fire Dept. spokesman Brian Humphrey.

Property damage was estimated at $55,000 and the cause of the fire remains under investigation, Humphrey said.

Boat ramp upgrades underway

The entrance to the Marina del Rey Public Boat Launch Ramp on Fiji Way will be closed through May as county officials make paving and landscape improvements intended to allow vehicles with boat trailers to make easier turns.

The ramp will remain open for launching boats from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily via an alternate entrance in the P-77 lot at 13560 Mindanao Way, according to the Los Angeles County Dept. of Beaches and Harbors.

The project is funded by a grant from the California Department of Boating and Waterways.

Call (310) 301-9152 for more information.

Venice chamber celebrates teachers

The Venice Chamber of Commerce is hosting its fourth annual Wave Awards tonight at the Rose Café, 220 Rose Ave., Venice.

The ceremony, sponsored by Google and organized by the chamber’s education committee, will recognize innovative and exceptional educators selected by their peers at 17 Venice schools or organizations.

The event is from 6 to 9 p.m. and tickets are $45. Call (310) 314-9976 or visit for more information.

Mark Abramson honored with environmental award

Bay Foundation Senior Watershed Advisor Mark Abramson will be feted with the Environmental Law Institute’s 2014 National Wetlands Award for Conservation and Restoration.

Abramson and five other award recipients are being honored today in a ceremony at the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C.

The nonprofit Bay Foundation is based at Loyola Marymount University.

One of Abramson’s most significant accomplishments is the 10-year effort to restore the Malibu Lagoon, completed in 2013. Abramson volunteered hundreds of hours to ensure the project’s success, said UCLA Professor Richard Ambrose, who also worked on the project.

“What differentiates [Mark] is the breadth of his talents, including the rare combination of technical expertise with the ability to lead and inspire people and to do the in-the-mud restoration work,” said former Bay Foundation Executive Director Shelly Luce.