Visitation Food Truck Night; Emerson Day of Service; Healthy Kids Day; Westside Voices

By Geoff Maleman

Members of the Rotary Club of Westchester and the Loyola Marymount University Rotaract Club recently volunteered their time to assist the Los Angeles County 1736 Family Crisis Center.

From cleaning and preparing walls to be painted to reorganizing the shelter’s storage area, Rotary Club President Cindy Williams said the group made a difference.

“We sorted toys and clothes according to age and put them in bins and cleaned out and reorganized the storage area where they keep all the toiletries and cleaning supplies for the facility,” she said.

“We are going back to paint the bathroom, kitchen and dining areas, repair and refinish the kitchen cabinets and do other cosmetic things that need to be done. It was a wonderful experience to help this shelter that does so much good in our community.”

Since 1972, 1736 Family Crisis Center has been responding to the needs of victims of domestic violence, runaway and homeless youth, homeless families and unemployed adults and youth. The shelter provides professional programs that are managed by licensed therapists, attorneys and experienced staff. Men, women, children and families can access life saving support 24 hours a day through five shelters, three community service centers and five crisis hotlines.

For more information,


Visitation School’s first in a series of five Food Truck Friday Nights promises to be a great event with a little something new. Five of the 18 gourmet trucks scheduled to appear are new to Westchester events, including The Lime Truck, winner of the Great Food Truck Race and the $100,000 prize award; The Slummin’ Gourmet, with its French sauces and dressings and classically trained French chef; and Bacon MANia, featuring all things bacon.

Visit the Visitation School website at to view all of the food truck menus and photos.

The event will be held from 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, April 13 at Visitation School, 8740 S. Emerson Ave. in Westchester. Free parking is available in the 8810 Emerson Adult School lot.

Food Truck Friday Night will also include rock and roll music from The Couchois Brothers, two free big-screen movies for children and “Ella” the face-painter. In addition, O’Malley’s Pub will serve beer, wine and margaritas, and the “Dessert Stop Caf/” will have ice cream sundaes and homemade baked goods.


Volunteers made their way to Orville Wright Middle School’s Emerson Avenue Community Garden March 31 to lend their time and talents to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s Day of Service site. This year’s Day of Service theme was “Good Food Day L.A.,” and the local school garden was just one of roughly 30 community projects across the city that was chosen for this distinction.

Dozens of volunteers, including students from UCLA harvested vegetables, laid rocks for circular seating and pulled weeds during the morning event. Volunteers were treated to fresh fruits and vegetables from the garden.

Although the garden is still a work in progress, when it is completed it will hold 34 plots in the student garden, a California native plant garden, butterfly garden and temporary communal garden beds, 38 plots allocated for use by families and community members, additional trees for the fruit tree mini-orchard, an outdoor circular seating area and a 1/5-mile walking path.

For more information, please email, or visit the community garden at or Good Food L.A. Day at


This year, the Westchester Family YMCA and Culver-Palms YMCA are celebrating Healthy Kids Day together from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, April 28 and 29, at Westfield Culver City.

Healthy Kids Day is a free community event that helps families enjoy active play and educational activities that lead to good health and well being. As part of the YMCA’s commitment to strengthening the community by offering improved health and education, Healthy Kids Day will encourage kids and parents to commit to keeping the body and mind active now and throughout summer.

Healthy Kids Day, the nation’s largest health day for kids, offers activities to get kids moving and thinking. Supported by the theme “Jump into Summer,” the organization says that opportunities to grow physically and mentally continue to be available during the summer months, the season when kids are traditionally less active and less involved in learning.

The event will feature a 30-foot rock climbing wall; garden planting; high-five-for summer-health, a joint creative effort in which kids add their handprint to a large mural; a basketball shoot; a scavenger hunt that involves physical exercise at each location; a podiatry clinic where a team of podiatrists of the Los Angeles County Podiatric Medical Society will scan kids’ feet and offer tips about getting the right sporting shoe for the child; and children’s Zumba, children’s line dance, and other mini classes for kids in front of the main stage.

For more information, the YMCA’s Jerry Morrow at (310) 390-3604.


The Westchester-based a-cappella group Westside Voices will present “Lullaby of Broadway,” an afternoon of music from the Great White Way, beginning at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, April 29 in the Fellowship Hall of Westchester United Methodist Church, 8065 Emerson Ave.

Westside Voices is a group comprised of top solo and choral singers from throughout the area. With a repertoire from jazz to classical, from Madrigals to world music, from Doo-Wop to holiday music, Westside Voices will perform a variety of songs made famous on Broadway.

Admission is free, though a voluntary donation of $10 per person is suggested. A dessert reception follows, and reservations are required. To reserve seats, please call Penny at (310) 670-3777.