Friday, April 18, 2014 6:47pm

Dave Wielenga

Dave has been covering Greater Long Beach since 1972, when as a 16-year-old student at Bellflower High School he became a $2-an-hour copy boy in the sports department of the Long Beach Press-Telegram. He’s never really left home---well, not counting those mysterious years in Mexico, anyway---because during a 41-years-and-counting career he just keeps finding this place so damn fascinating. Dave’s prize-winning work has appeared in magazines as diverse as Rolling Stone, US Weekly, Modern Maturity, Sports Illustrated and Vibe and in newspapers from the Los Angeles Times to the Washington Post. He’s received awards for investigations, features, news, entertainment and sports from the Associated Press, Los Angeles Press Club, Orange County Press Club and Association of Alternative Newsweeklies. When he did leave town—the country, in fact--the university students of Tecnologico de Monterrey in Mazatlan voted him Teacher of the Year. Just sayin’. Dave spent 23 years at the Press-Telegram, covering USC, UCLA, the Rams and the Angels---as well as high schools, Rose Bowls, Super Bowls and two Olympics Games—then moving through features, entertainment, news and investigations before taking a buyout when the paper slashed its staff in 1995. Dave served on the staffs of two so-called “alternative” weeklies—New Times Los Angeles and OC Weekly … well, make that three, since he just wrapped up a stint with the late, great District Weekly. He wrote a blog---Redistricted!---while preparing to launch GreaterLongBeach.com.

Email: DaveW@greaterlongbeach.com

Articles

1ST DISTRICT’S VOTE-BY-MAIL BALLOTING HAS ALREADY REACHED 2010 LEVEL


From LBReport.com:  Registered voters in Long Beach’s 1st district, who usually have one of the lowest turnouts for elections, have already cast more vote-by-mail ballots in the Long Beach Primary Nominating Election than they did during the last citywide election in April of 2010.e ‘The increased use of the vote-by-mail option—which will be the first reported when the polls close Tuesday  at 8 p.m.—is […]

FROM THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH … TO JUSTIN RUDD’S CAREER SUMMIT!


From Turkey Trots to chalk art to photo contests to beauty pageants for women and children and dogs, Justin Rudd never seems to run out of ways to distract us from the gaping maw of financial and spiritual brokenness that is destined to become our grave. At their April 26 event, however, Rudd and his […]

GERRIE SCHIPSKE: THE LONG ROAD TO THE RIGHT PLACE AT THE RIGHT TIME


Gerrie Schipske was born into a Long Beach that is often idealized, but amid the architectural icons were major obstacles for most minorities---including women, especially lesbians. On the cusp of Long Beach elections on April 8, this encore of a 2013 OC Weekly cover story tells how a longshot arrived at the brink of becoming Mayor.

AN APOLOGY TO UDUAK NTUK AND READERS OF GREATERLONGBEACH.COM


When LBUSD School Board candidate Uduak Ntuk was endorsed by a national PAC, GreaterLongBeach.com misread a press release, failed to fact-check the story and erroneously reported that Megan Kerr, Ntuk's opponent, was not eligible for the endorsement because she is a white woman. We feel dumb.

ONE QUESTION FOR 3RD DISTRICT COUNCIL CANDIDATE STEVE BELLO …


Three weeks before Long Beach voters go to the polls on April 8, how has your six-month campaign for the 3rd district seat on the City Council confirmed or changed your perceptions of the city and the district?

BELLFLOWER FINDS A HIGHER POWER—FAIRNESS UNDER THE RULES


The Hosanna Chapel, formerly the Bellflower, Nubel and Holiday theaters, has been the centerpiece of Bellflower's downtown business district since the late 1970s.

BERNIE PEARL TAKES HIS NEW ALBUM OF OLD BLUES FOR A LIVE TEST DRIVE


Bernie Pearl, for whom life remains best described by the title of the radio show—Nothin’ But the Blues—he hosted on the old KLON-FM more than three decades ago, will test drive the material on his new album Saturday night in the intimate confines of Boulevard Music in Culver City. The collection, Take Your Time, has received […]

THE SUN ALSO RACES


Sixty-nine teams of 6th-to-12th grade students from 19 schools and organizations will gather at El Dorado Park todayh---as they did in this photo from 2013---to race solar-powered model cars they have designed from kits. The Long Beach City Council's 5th district representative Gerrie Schipske founded the event 5 years ago.

WALK THE EAST VILLAGE WALK BEFORE YOU TALK THE TALK


Perhaps you talk about downtown’s East Village Arts District  as though it’s a villagey district of artists on the east side of downtown. Do you? Don’t answer! At least, not until you’ve taken a stroll through the streets of the sunrise side of town with the smart people of Long Beach Heritage. Today they are restarting their […]

GULP! LONG BEACH DECLARES IMMINENT WATER SUPPLY SHORTAGE


It may be hard to swallow considering this week’s sogginess, but California remains in the midst of a drought that is in many ways unprecedented. That's why Long Beach Water Commissioners today imposed new restrictions on water usage.

LOWENTHAL ENDORSED FOR MAYOR BY LONG BEACH SIERRA CLUB


Citing her environmental record across two decades as an elected official, the Sierra Club’s Long Beach group is “enthusiastically” endorsing state Assemblymember Bonnie Lowenthal for Mayor of Long Beach.

ALAN LOWENTHAL REVEALS THAT REPUBLICANS PLAN TO PARTICIPATE IN 2014 ELECTIONS


In a communique with supporters that was widely interpreted as a cry for help, Congressman Alan Lowenthal, (D-Long Beach) revealed Sunday that he has been “targeted” by Republican Party operatives who are blatantly disregarding his 2012 victory over Long Beach City Councilman Gary DeLong—the victory that earned Lowenthal his first term in the House of Representatives, […]

PORT OF LONG BEACH GIVES BERTH 55 A NEW LIFE ON ITS LEASE


The Port of Long Beach says it has found a new place to construct a fireboat station and security building, meaning the tenants of Berth 55 have a new lease on life.

For Maestro Diemecke, it’s one down, three to go with LB Symphony


Maestro Enrique Arturo Diemecke began his goodbyes last Saturday (January 25), taking the podium at the Terrace Theater and leading the Long Beach Symphony through a large and eclectic program—the first of four concerts that are steadily leading him to the end of a 13-year career as the orchestra’s musical director. In other words: one […]

THE CENTER’S BLACK & WHITE GALA HONORS ICONS ON MARCH 15


Ross Mathews of E! television’s “Hello Ross” program, state Senator Ricardo Lara and local personality JEWELS will receive Icon Awards at the Long Beach LGBTQ Center’s Black & White Ball  on March 15 at The Grand events center. The evening marks the return of what has been considered the signature event for The LGBTQ Center, […]

WATCH VIDEO OF JANUARY 23 MAYORAL FORUM AT LBREPORT.COM


LBReport.com is streaming on-demand video of the Long Beach mayoral forum that it carried live Thursday evening (January 23) from The Grand events center, where about 450 people gathered to hear four of the field’s 10 candidates explain why they are best qualified to follow the two terms of Mayor Bob Foster. Long Beach City Council […]

LB SYMPHONY CONDUCTOR IS BUILDING TO A BIG GOOD-BYE


Maestro Enrique Arturo Diemecke begins his goodbyes Saturday, leading the Long Beach Symphony through the first of four concerts that are leading him to the end of a 13-year career as the orchestra’s musical director.

GUERRA NOT IN A RUSH TO CREATE JOBS OR HELP SMALL BUSINESSES IN DOWNEY


It took a couple of days longer than expected and included a little more drama than necessary, but the Downey City Council ultimately agreed to participate in a program intended to create jobs by helping small businesses. The program, offered by Gateway Cities Council of Governments and the Los Angeles Regional Small Business Development Center, […]

McKENNA’S ISN’T ON THE BAY, ANYMORE—BANCAP FORECLOSES


McKenna's restaurant, which may have had the best waterfront view in Long Beach, was repossessed today (January 2) by BANCAP Investment Group---two months after its majority owner, Nick Limer, died of pancreatic cancer.

FIRST LOOK: WE’RE ABOUT TO START LIVING IN TED LIEU’S WORLD


State Senator Ted W. Lieu, whose 28th district includes a portion of Long Beach, was a very active and effective legislator in 2013, and lots of the measures he got passed begin affecting us as new laws on New Year's Day.

SARA COZOLINO: EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY…AND MIGHT SAVE A LIFE


Sara Cozolino, whose revealing portraits of dogs and cats at Long Beach Animal Care Services have sparked an uptick in their adoptions, was honored this week with a proclamation from Mayor Bob Foster.

LB REPUBLICAN WOMEN FEDERATED CELEBRATE 60 YEARS; MEN WELCOME


Long Beach Republican Women Federated will celebrate 60 years of training activists and community leaders as well as install next year’s elected officers during a holiday brunch at The Grand this Saturday (December 14) from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. A press release from the group indicates that several previous club presents, local political candidates, […]

BIG NAMES BEHIND BIG FUNDRAISER FOR JAMES JOHNSON’S BIG JUMP FROM LB CITY COUNCIL TO CITY ATTORNEY


FROM THE POLITICAL TICKER: Among the things James Johnson has learned during his first term as the Long Beach City Council’s 7th district representative is that he would prefer to be the Long Beach City Attorney. Johnson’s early September announcement that he was withdrawing his bid for re-election—which seemed like a done deal—to make a […]

LB FOLK REVIVAL FESTIVAL: IT’S ABOUT MUCH MORE THAN MUSIC


The music will be great, but the success of Saturday's first LB Folk Revival Festival will also be measured by it's long-term impact on the revitalization of the Historic Old Pine Avenue neighborhood above 3rd Street.

POLITICAL TICKER: TODAY’S REX RICHARDSON FUNDRAISER CONNECTED TO HISTORIC NORTH LB LANDMARKS—AND THEIR HOUSE


FROM THE POLITICAL TICKER: Rex Richardson’s run for the 9th district seat on the Long Beach City Council is his first attempt at public office, but he displayed some political savvy by connecting this evening’s (November 16) fundraiser with a couple of Northtown’s historic landmarks—Dan and Holly Pressburg. Or maybe Richardson was simply smart enough to say yes when […]

WAR OR PEACE: REFLECTIONS ON A VETERAN’S DAY AT THE CEMETERY


Monday was my birthday, and for the 58th year in a row it fell on Veterans Day. For perhaps the first time ever, I spent part of my birthday observing Veterans Day in the cemetery---where many people spend it every year.

EARLY BIRDS GET TO HEAR LYNN DYMALLY AT GOOD NEIGHBORS OF NORTH LB MEETING


Water Replenishment District board director Lynn Dymally—yes, you have heard that last name before—will be the guest speaker early tomorrow (Tuesday, November 12) at the monthly breakfast meeting of the Good Neighbors of North Long Beach. Former 9th district Long Beach City Councilmember Val Lerch pulls together this quick community event, which convenes at 7 […]

VETS DAY FUNDRAISER FOR EX-MARINE RICARDO LINAREZ’ LB COUNCIL CAMPAIGN


Richardo Linarez chose today—Veterans Day—to raise money for his campaign for the Long Beach City Council’s 1st district seat to emphasize the eight years he was a sergeant in the Marines. If he wins, Linarez would occupy the seat currently warmed by Robert Garcia, who is running for mayor. The press release for this evening’s […]

POLITICAL TICKER: TALB ENDORSES MEGAN KERR FOR SCHOOL BOARD


Megan Kerr, seen here at an early-October candidates forum presented by the North Long Beach Community Action Group, has been endorsed for the Long Beach Unified Board of Education by the Teachers Union of Long Beach (TALB).

LOOKING TOWARD SOCAL’S FUTURE AMID RANCHO LOS ALAMITOS’ PAST


As Southern California enormous population threatens its beauty, resources and sustainability, Rancho Los Alamitos has assembled a panel of experts for "A Place for Us: Reimagining and Reclaiming" to discus how to draw from the past to move toward better places for people to live, work and play.

FORBES.COM: BOEING MAY BUILD ITS 777X AIRLINER IN LONG BEACH


Only weeks after Boeing announced that it would shut down most operations in Long Beach in 2015, Forbes.com reports the company may use this area's experienced workforce to build its 777x widebody commercial airliner.

WET WETLANDS, HERONS GREAT & BLUE ON AN OIL-BE-DAMNED NATURE WALK


Saturday morning's 90-minute hike through the Los Cerritos Wetlands will give you an inkling of the landscape that dominated the Greater Long Beach area. Most of it is gone, and not all that long ago.

“SPACE BETWEEN REALITY & ILLUSION” AT THE CENTER THROUGH DEC. 31


The emergence of The Center as an exhibition space for local artists continues with "The Space Between Reality and Illusion," a collection of works by seven faculty members at Cal State Long Beach. Through year's end.

F&M BANK’S EXPANSION INSPIRES HOMAGE, HAMBURGERS & HARD TRUTH


The extra-special effort and expense Farmers & Merchants Bank invested in its new Corona del Mar branch somehow makes us think about its old North Long Beach branch, a wonderful Midcentury Modern building that was demolished in 2010.

A COMMUNITY CONFERENCE WITH A QUESTION: “WHICH WAY, WESTSIDE?”


A community conference rooted in a just-the-facts account of health and academic-performance conditions on Long Beach’s Westside has attracted a caliber of public officials, private foundations, pedigreed academics, comprehensive databases—and complimentary continental breakfasts—that could empower real change in the neighborhoods that flank Santa Fe Avenue. Impressive. However, the free event—set for this Saturday (Oct. 19) […]

BLUESMAN PAYS HIS DUES & WAITS FOR A KARMIC BOOMERANG


Bluesman Bill Grisolia is proud someone admired his JBL amplifiers enough to jack them, but now he'd like to get them back. If you spot one, give him a call at 562.762.8317.

POLITICAL TICKER: SCHOOL BOARD’S CHANGE AGENTS FACE INTERROGATION SUNDAY


From the Political Ticker … No question, change is coming to the Long Beach Unified School District’s Board of Education no matter which of so-far-three candidates—Jeff Price, Uduak Ntuk and Megan Kerr—wins next April’s election for the District 1 seat that represents the North Long Beach area. Change became unavoidable when Mary Stanton announced in […]

SIERRA CLUB MEETING: YOUR GARDEN-VARIETY WILDLIFE-FRIENDLY OASIS


Time for the next step: transforming your garden into a wildlife-friendly oasis. Time for tonight's Sierra Club meeting, where wildlife-habitat steward Allan Pollock is delivering a how-to: 7:30

LONG BEACH NAACP HONORS 73 YEARS OF ACTIVISM AT FOUNDERS DINNER


The past, present and future of Long Beach's 73-year-old branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will comingle Saturday night (Oct. 5) at the 34th Founders Dinner and Awards Banquet.

WILL OWNERSHIP RIFT BE THE RUIN OF LONG BEACH DERBY GALS?


Long Beach Roller Gals management has summoned players to a 10 a.m. meeting today amid rumors that disagreement between the roller derby team’s two owners has led one to dissolve their partnership.

AFTER 5 YEARS, LOCAL NEWS RETURNS TO LONG BEACH TV SETS


NewsLongBeach, the latest venture from the young media trainees of VoiceWaves, kicked off Sept. 26 with an hour-long special, "Re-Imagining Diversity in Long Beach," and begins weekly half-hour shows on Oct. 24 at 7:30 p.m. on Charter Channel 32 and Verizon FiOS Channel 41.

GO TO GOOD NEIGHBOR FESTIVAL TODAY—IN CASE IT GOES AWAY


Hard to believe today’s Good Neighbor Festival and Picnic is the seventh incarnation of the  just-can’t-let-go-of-summer series that Gerrie Schipske started shortly after 5th district voters chose her to represent them on the Long Beach City Council. Guess that old saying is true: Time flies when you’re having your face painted, competing in pie- and watermelon-eating contests, bounce-housing ’til you lose your […]

THIS TIME VOTERS WILL DECIDE WHETHER CRAIGHEAD IS A SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER


Diana Craighead, vice president of the Long Beach Unified School District’s Board of Education, announced today that she will run for election to the District 5 seat she received through appointment in March 2012. David Barton was elected to the Board of Education by District 5 voters in 2010, but when he resigned due to […]

STATE LEGISLATORS HONOR HEWS, ECONOMY FOR THEIR JOURNALISM


Brian Hews and Randy Economy of the Hews Media Group, commended in a June 23 resolution by California legislators for their “professional leadership in the field of journalism” and for “the highest commendations of the people of California,” were presented with the honor Monday. Assemblyman Mike Gatto, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, authored Members Resolution […]

WANDA SYKES: ABOVE ALL ELSE, STANDING UP FOR HERSELF


After so many years, does Wanda Sykes look at standup as an emotional or physical need? Nope. "I look at it as my job!" Sykes says."There was a job I quit to be a standup comic, and so now standup is my job. I can't just not work. I’m not just going to sit around the house. I go back to my job. That’s standup."

WITH JOHNSON GONE, THE ROBERTO URANGA CAMPAIGN IS ON


Roberto Uranga announced his run for the City Council's 7th District seat hours after incumbent James Johnson opted to aim for City Attorney, but says his candidacy is more about keeping a promise he made to voters when he withdrew from the 2010 campaign.

LB ROLLER GALS THROWING A ROLLER DISCO AT CRAFTED THIS EVENING


With their September 14 season opener only three weeks away, the Long Beach Roller Gals are throwing a Roller Disco party this evening to put people in the mood—and perhaps get them familiar with the directions. The team has relocated from the Queen Mary Dome to a rehabilitated World War II-era warehouse in San Pedro—the […]

ONE QUESTION FOR … GARDEN OF EATIN’ EXILES PAUL & DANA BUCHANAN


Three weeks after homegrown-food activist and caterer Chef Paul Buchanan was evicted by anonymous vote of the Long Beach Community Garden Board of Directors, we've got one question for him and his partner/wife, Dana: Have they moved on?

SCHIPSKE INVITES LB RESIDENTS INTO CITY BUDGET DISCUSSION ON AUG. 14


With the rare appearance of a surplus at the bottom line of Mayor Bob Foster’s proposed budget for the City of Long Beach, the competition for spending rights has begun among various interests at City Hall. Where does that leave residents who want their voices heard on the matter? They could start at the Long […]

MERRILL CRUMP, TRANSGENDERED HIV SURVIVOR, GIVES KEYNOTE ADDRESS TONITE AT TAFESILAFA’I FESTIVAL DINNER


Merrill Crump of Unity Fellowship of Long Beach, a transgendered woman and an HIV survivor who spreads education and inspiration in LA County Jails, will deliver the keynote speech tonight at the Leaders' Dinner of the 17th Tafesilafa’i Pacific Islander Festival.

WHAT’S HAPPENING WITH FORMER RDA-OWNED PROPERTIES? CITY PRESENTING SOME ANSWERS


Mike Conway, recently appointed to the City of Long Beach’s newly created position of Business & Property Director, will be at St. Mary Medical Center on Thursday at 6 p.m. to present information about the disposition of properties owned by the former Long Beach Redevelopment Agency. He will answer questions after his presentation. Conway is […]

BE S.A.F.E. PROGRAM ADDS HOURS AND ACTIVITIES AT EIGHT LONG BEACH PARKS


Eight parks located in some of Long Beach’s most-crowded neighborhoods will stay open a few more hours and offer a special menu of services when the Be S.A.F.E program is introduced Monday (July 8) by the Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine. Be S.A.F.E. is an acronym for a slate of “Summer Activities in a […]

TERMED OUT IN DOWNEY, GUERRA JOINS RACE FOR STATE SENATE


Mario Guerra, who will be termed out as a Downey City Councilmember in 2014, has announced his candidacy for state Senate in District 32. Guerra, a Republican, joins a field that until now had included a pair of Democrats—former state assembly member Tony Mendoza and Kevin Perez-Allen, an executive in the not-for-profit sector—and will have […]

TODAY’S DOWNTOWN LB MARCH TO URGE COMPASSION FOR IMMIGRANTS


While Congress takes a break at either the halfway point—or the vanishing point—of national immigration reform, thousands of delegates to the United Church of Christ’s General Synod are taking a walk around downtown Long Beach today to urge the politicians to legislate with compassion. The march begins just before 1 o’clock this afternoon—12:45 p.m., to […]

SUPREME COURT STRIKES DOWN DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT, LETS PROP 8′S INVALIDATION STAND


Same-sex marriage is legal in California today after a pair of 5-4 decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled that the federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional and let stand a lower court’s ruling that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. The Defense of Marriage Act was signed into law in 1996 by then-President Bill […]

LIVE COVERAGE OF SUPREME COURT DECISIONS ON PROP 8 AND DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT BEGINS ON LBREPORT.COM AT 7 A.M.


Beginning shortly before 7 o’clock this morning, LBREPORT.com will have live coverage as the U.S. Supreme Court releases its opinions on the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8 and Congress’ Defense of Marriage Act. LBREPORT.com’s coverage will include the Court’s verbatim opinions as well as team coverage of local reactions and life webcast coverage of a […]

THE FRIENDSHIP NEIGHBORHOOD—A.K.A. WILLMORE CITY—DEBUTS WITH … A FRIEND FEST, OF COURSE!


Residents of the Willmore City area of Long Beach are calling their new association “The Friendship Neighborhood.” They’re calling Saturday’s inaugural community-building event at Drake Park a “Friend Fest.” It’s not difficult to see where this is coming from—not where I come from, which is  City of Bellflower … which,  while I grew up there […]

UPDATED WITH QUOTES: UDUAK NTUK ACKNOWLEDGES HE’S RUNNING FOR LBUSD BOARD OF EDUCATION


Uduak Ntuk, 34, a homegrown community and political activist, has registered the “Ntuk For School Board 2014” fundraising committee on the California Secretary of State website—apparently signaling his candidacy for a seat on the Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education. Ntuk neither confirmed nor denied his candidacy Thursday night when GreaterLongBeach.com contacted him […]

UDUAK NTUK FORMS FUNDRAISING COMMITTEE TO RUN FOR LONG BEACH SCHOOL BOARD IN 2014


Uduak Ntuk, 34, a homegrown community and political activist whose voice and presence have become increasingly public during the past couple of years, has registered the “Ntuk For School Board 2014” fundraising committee on the California Secretary of State website—apparently signaling his candidacy for a seat on the Long Beach Unified School District Board of […]

THE END OF A SWEET DREAM: SHORTNIN’ BREAD BAKERY HAS CLOSED


Shortnin’ Bread, the corner bakery which seemed foreshadow the coming true of downtown Long Beach's dreams when it opened in October 2011, has announced that it is no longer in business.

INK ‘N’ IRON FESTIVAL INVADES QUEEN MARY FOR 10TH STRAIGHT YEAR


As The Ink-N-Iron Festival swaggers onto the local waterfront for the 10th time, the annual celebration of tattoos, hot rods and ‘50s fashion is becoming a Long Beach tradition that, thankfully, still includes plenty of rough edges … right down to its incongruent location aboard and around the Queen Mary. Although … maybe it’s just […]

AFTER THREE WEEKS, IS IT TECHNICALLY CORRECT TO CALL ANNA RUBIN LBLGP’S “NEW” ADMINISTRATIVE DIRECTOR?


Anna Rubin is the new Administrative Director for Long Beach Lesbian & Gay Pride, Inc., according to a press release distributed by the organization early Wednesday afternoon. But perhaps you already knew. The same release points out that Rubin’s appointment became effective more than three weeks ago—-on May 13. If only they’d waited just a […]

AFTER 58 YEARS, DOWNEY CLO HAS FADED TO BLACK


Tonight's opening of "Paint Your Wagon," was already planned as last show of the Downey Civic Light Opera's 58th season. But executive director Marsha Moode has announced that it will also begin the countdown toward the end of the company, altogether. It all goes away on June 16.

HAV-A-GREATER WEEKEND: DRAMA QUEEN, SKA, PATCHWORK, GREAT HOMES


No matter what kind of mood you're in---cold, condemning, absurd, hyper-happy, deeply angry, wannabe hippie, house-envying ---there's something going on in Long Beach this week that's sure to exacerbate it. Take it to the limit! One more time!

SEA FESTIVAL: AN EX-EXTRAVAGANZA FINDS BEING RIGHT-SIZED IS SUPER


The Long Beach Sea Festival is underway with a summer-long schedule of simple events that has become its tradition after several failed attempts at grandiosity---including the year it was born as the Festival of the Sea in 1908. Check it out!

’100 DAYS OF SUMMER’ STARTS FRIDAY … AND WE LIKE (ALMOST) EVERY SINGLE THING ABOUT THAT


We like just about everything about 100 Days of Summer, the collaboration between Long Beach’s Parks, Recreation and Marine Department and its Convention and Visitors Bureau: • We like its name, which sounds so much like the title of a surfing movie you almost forget our coastline doesn’t have any waves. • We like its timing, which […]

GERRIE SCHIPSKE: LB’S FIRST GAY MAYOR? WE THOUGHT WE’D NEVER ASK


Although Gerrie Schipske became Long Beach's first openly gay elected official in 1992, she has rarely referenced the subject ... until now, when we asked the 5th district's City Council representative about it---two months into her campaign to be the next Mayor of Long Beach.

LONG BEACH TO HOLD “GUN BUYBACK DAY” JUNE 8 AT LBPD’S NORTH STATION


Long Beach City Councilmember Al Austin has announced that a Gun Buyback Day will be held on Saturday, June 8 at the Long Beach Police Department’s North Division Substation from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., GreaterLongBeach.com has learned. Austin, who represents the 8th district, made the revelation Wednesday at a May Day press conference at […]

O’DONNELL PLANS INFUSION OF INFRASTRUCTURE CASH


Long Beach City Councilmember Patrick O’Donnell met Saturday with supporters of the Long Beach Nature Center and indicated he plans to allocate a sizable amount of money for infrastructure projects at the venue, according to a story published this morning on LBReport.com. The story includes a summary of the meeting by Ann Cantrell, a veteran […]

A SAD STATE: DOWNEY MAYOR SLYLY PIMPS HIS PUBLIC OFFICE AT PRIVATE GROUP’S FUNDRAISER


Mario Guerra, a member of the Downey City Council doing a one-year stint as mayor, on Wednesday delivered a speech at a fundraising meeting of the Downey Chamber of Commerce that he called “The State of the City Address.” If the title of Guerra’s speech misled people into thinking this was an event that was open […]

DOWNEY MAY HIRE ANOTHER LAW FIRM TO FIGHT CIVIL SUITS AGAINST ITS COPS


Particularly uneasy over liability claims against the Downey Police Department and their potential financial impact on the city, the Downey City Council may hire an Orange County law firm to help deal with civil litigation matters at its meeting this evening. Eric Pierce, editor of The Downey Patriot, spotted the item on the meeting agenda. […]

PATCH: LB’S “RANGER RICK” SUING FOR $1 MILLION REWARD IN DORNER MANHUNT


He was born Richard Heltebrake. He grew up to become the manager of Camp Tahquitz, a rustic mountain retreat in the San Bernardino Mountains owned by the Long Beach Boy Scouts of America. He has gone on to be called “Ranger Rick” by the boys. And now, according to a story posted overnight by Nancy […]

HAVE-A-GREATER EARTH DAY WITH PEDAL, SOLAR & MUSICAL POWER


It's Earth Day, dedicated to the proposition that people really should remember not to shit where they eat---at least on one day each year, and we've come up with a short list of fun and healthy things to do, which we hope you won't poo-poo.

ONE QUESTION FOR … ASSEMBLY CANDIDATE TONIA REYES URANGA


Nearly three years after Tonia Reyes Uranga last held a public office---or ran for one---the former Long Beach City Council member has filed to run for the 70th district seat in the California Assembly in 2014. We've got one question for her ...

GREUEL BETTER AT COMING UP WITH THREATS THAN DOCUMENTS


LA Controller Wendy Greuel---a candidate for mayor---responded to the Los Cerritos Community News' pursuit of a Jan 23 request for public records held by her office with a letter denying an intentional delay and threatening to countersue if the paper took legal action.

POTENTIAL LUNATICS @ SXSW: 10 INTERESTING THINGS


The Potential Lunatics are recently returned from South By Southwest in Austin, TX, where the teenaged, the brother-and-sister teenaged band had some interesting experiences. Ten of them, to be precise.

ANOTHER RESIGNATION LEAVES EAST VILLLAGE ASSN. WITH TWO BOARD MEMBERS


Another just-elected member of the East Village Association board of directors has resigned, unhappy with the manner in which voting was conducted March 20 when the alliance of residents and businesses in the East Village Arts District of downtown Long Beach held its elections in the bar at Bliss 525 restaurant. Five of six people […]

TOLDJA SO: DOWNEY SENDS SMOKE SIGNAL TO HOOKAH LOUNGES


Downey officials seem to be tempering their enthusiasm---and the easy approval process---for hookah bars and cigar lounges in its downtown, which GreaterLongBeach.com totally predicted in February when one hookah club offered free admission to women wearing lingerie. Just sayin'.

THE ART OF HONESTY: THREE EVA ELECTION WINNERS DECLINE TO SERVE


Three women elected to the East Village Association board March 20 declined their offices, alleging the voting was fraudulent, and helped form another group---the Art District Neighborhood Association---to represent residents of the East Village Arts District.

OUR APOLOGIES FOR THE INTERRUPTION; WE’RE BACK AT WORK NOW


Greater Long Beach offers its sincere apologies for the lack of activity on the website since Mondayand its assurances that we’ll be back up to full speed in a couple of days. A worrisome medical issue rather suddenly presented itself after the “Rethinking the Power of the Press” event Monday night at McKenna’s restaurant—a standing-room-only […]

SUSTAINABLE 2ND SATURDAYS: SWEAT & INTELLECT IN A PARKING LOT


Sustainable 2nd Saturday began Saturday in the East Village Arts District with tetherball games and the screening of a documentary about urban design in the made-over parking lot on 4th Street. Admission was free and so was the movie popcorn.

WILL MOLINA HEALTHCARE CURE WHAT AILS NORTH PINE AVENUE?


After waiting some 16 months for Molina Healthcare and Millworks real estate development to marry and makeover the historic Press-Telegram block, we find out today that those darn kids went off and eloped. The place is supposed to be ready for Molina to move in this summer.

ULASZEWSKI WILL BE TALKING WALKING LOOPS THURSDAY AT LB CPAC MEETING


Brian Ulaszewski, formerly of Studio 111 and still so newly of City Fabrick—his not-for-profit urban design studio—that the website isn’t quite finished yet, will be at Thursday night’s meeting of the Long Beach Central Project Area Council (LB CPAC) to explain the Walking Loops project. The LB CPAC group, among several formed in Long Beach […]

UNPAID BUSINESS LICENSE FEES COST CITY $2.5 MILLION OVER TWO YEARS


City Auditor Laura Doud finds 87 percent of accounts are over six months old, "no consistency" in procedure, "few attempts at collection" and attributes the costly disarray to a lack of oversight by city management.

PORT COMMISSIONERS TO PRESENT “UPDATE” TO RESIDENTS OF ALAMITOS BEACH


Port of Long Beach Beach Harbor Commissioners will attend the March 14 meeting of the Alamitos Beach Neighborhood Association “to provide an update on Port projects, jobs and careers, air quality and more” according to a press release from the residents group. The announcement contained no further information, other than the fact that refreshments will […]

LINGERIE NIGHT: DOWNEY CLUB TWEAKS THE MEANING OF “COVER CHARGE”


 Giving a tweak to the meaning of “cover charge,” the Mosaik Hookah Lounge in Downey will give free admission Thursday night to women who arrive wearing lingerie. The Lingerie Night promotion seems likely to provoke the conservative forces that have established Downey’s reputation for party-poopability. This is a city with no strip clubs, no tattoo parlors, […]

KNABE ITEMIZES HIS “TOP 10 REASONS CLEAN WATER INITIATIVE SUCKS”


Supervisor Don Knabe itemized his opposition to the proposed Clean Water Initiative by including the "Top 10 Reasons This Initiative Sucks" in Wednesday's so-called "State of the County" address to the Cerritos Regional Chamber of Commerce.

OPIE’S PACIFIC-CROSSING PHOTOS AT LBMA PROVIDE DEPTH, PERCEPTION


The simplicityy of Catherine Opie's photographs account for their power. She reduced each day of her voyage across the Pacific Ocean to its two most-significant events---sunrise and sunset

BREZENOFF RESIGNS FROM GARCIA’S STAFF FOR PRIVATE-SECTOR JOB


Daniel Brezenoff, a member of Long Beach City Councilmember Robert Garcia’s 1st district staff since 2009, announced today via a 1:30 a.m. Facebook dispatch that he is resigning to become Director of Social Services at La Casa mental rehabilitation hospital in North Long Beach. Brezenoff, a licensed clinical social worker, worked as the Clinical Coordinator […]

LOS CERRITOS NEWS PUBLISHER FORMS PAC TO FIGHT CORRUPTION


Los Cerritos Community News publisher Brian Hews is escalating his paper's journalism into a high-profile crusade against government corruption. Hews has formed a Political Action Committee (PAC) called Citizens for a Clean and Honest Government.

O’DONNELL: “IT DOESN’T MEAN I’M RUNNING … IT DOESN’T MEAN I’M NOT”


Long Beach City Councilmember Patrick O’Donnell has formed the "O'Donnell for Assembly 2014," but says it "doesn’t mean I’m running for the state assembly ... and it doesn’t mean I’m not.”

UPTOWN VILLAGE MARKET RETURNS TO EXPO ARTS CENTER FRI-SAT WITH ONLY THE COOLEST ART, CRAFTS, INVENTIONS AND DOO-DADS


The EXPO Arts Center is becoming so identified as the soul of Bixby Knolls—although that identity changes constantly, depending on the occasion—that it’s easy to forget how recently the place was known only as a furniture store. EXPO Furniture Warehouse closed in 2008. This Friday and Saturday—December 7 and 8—weekend, the EXPO Arts Center will […]

SUPERVISORS’ INVESTIGATION: ANOTHER ‘PRICE OF BEING A KNABE’


The Board of Supervisors is investigating LA County’s $2 million contract with a company represented by lobbyist Matt Knabe---and approved with the vote of his father, Supervisor Don Knabe.

ALL WRITEY! OR, REDISCOVERING A MOSAIC OF READER OPINIONS


Here at GreaterLongBeach.com, we work and work and work some more to bring you the most important stories from Long Beach and its satellite cities---and this is the thanks we get. May we just say ... Thank you! Thank you ever so very, very much!

AFTER A HALF CENTURY, DOWNEY HIGH FOOTBALL TEAM STAGES QUITE AN ENCORE


The Downey High football team finally encored Saturday night, and the way the Vikings achieved their second-ever CIF football championship—a 33-25 victory over La Serna High in a steadily intensifying rainstorm at Cal State Fullerton—turned out to be worth the half-century or so that everyone had waited since they won their first. After slip-sliding to […]

LB PLAYHOUSE PRESENTS HISTORY’S SECOND-MOST-POPULAR CHRISTMAS STORY


"A Christmas Carol," contends that if a bad, hard and horse's ass like Ebenezer Scrooge can turn a night of bad dreams into happily ever ... so can we. At the LB Playhouse from Dec. 8 to Dec. 23.

ONE BEHIND A CAMERA, ONE BEHIND A BAR, BOTH LIVING DREAMS COME TRUE


CLICK HERE TO LISTEN to filmmaker Renee McClellan and 49ers Tavern owner Tracy Kittinger in conversations with Dave Wielenga on the Nov. 15 edition of Greater Long Beach Radio. We’re calling this the Dream-Come-True edition of Greater Long Beach Radio, the latest in what has become a loose series of shows that explore what we’re pretty […]

JAILED LA COUNTY ASSESSOR IN COURT SEEKING BAIL REDUCTION


LA County Assessor John R. Noguez, who doesn't like the solitary, three-showers-a-week life he's lived in the Men's Central Jail since his October 17 arrest on corruption charges, is in court today asking a judge to reduce his $1.6 million bail.

THE CLOSING OF [ OPEN ] ENDS AN ERA, BUT NOT NECESSARILY THE STORY


[ OPEN ], the used book store and cultural force founded nine years ago by Se Reed, was sometimes a beacon and other times an engine---but was always a home for Long Beach arts, music, literature and pride. The store is closing this month.

ANGELS GATE CENTER ASKS: WHERE FOR ART THOU, WILDERNESS?


With its year-long exhibition "Into The Wilderness: The Journey Within," Angels Gate Cultural Center in San Pedro continues the contemplation of vanishing wilderness and frontier that in the United States extends back at least to 1890 and historian Frederick Jackson Turner.

THE 49′RS TAVERN: COME CELEBRATE THE SURVIVAL OF A LOCAL LANDMARK


Although it’s been 54 years since The 49’rs Tavern was established, Saturday night’s anniversary party will also celebrate the two years since Tracy Kittinger became proprietor---and saved the local landmark.

JOURNALISM: IT WORKS IF YOU WORK IT—JUST ASK JOHN NOGUEZ


It wasn't fast or easy, but more than a year of relentless and painstaking investigative reporting by Los Cerritos Community News publisher Brian Hews and reporter Randy Economy finally resulted in last week's arrest of County Assessor John Noguez on charges of political corruption.

COUNTY ASSESSOR NOGUEZ ARRESTED; DA COOLEY EXPECTED TO GIVE DETAILS AT 10:30 AM


Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez has been arrested, according to news reports. Steve Cooley, the Los Angeles County District Attorney, has scheduled a press conference for 10:30 a.m. today (Oct. 17), where he is expected to announce the arrest of Noguez, as well as other persons, and likely outline the charges against them. The […]

THE FIRST LONG BEACH MARATHON WAS ALL ABOUT THE WINNING RACE


The Long Beach Marathon debuted on May 23,1931, and it was clearly a product of its time and place. It was inspired by the idealistic principles of the Olympic Movement, which within a year would be moving into Los Angeles for the 1932 Summer Games. But it was mired in a Long Beach mindset that four years earlier had welcomed Ku Klux Klan conventioneers to town and permitted 26,000 of them to march to Bixby Park. Then a Native American runner won the race--and the wait for the second Long Beach Marathon was more than 50 years.

LOWENTHAL COUNTERS RICH TV AD BLITZ BY STAGING SIMPLE POLITICAL PLAY


Facing a multi-million-dollar blitz of campaign ads for Republican congressional candidates by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Democrat Alan Lowenthal has invited specific local business owners to a Retro Row eatery today to snack and chat---and show specifically invited local reporters that he's down with business, too.

LET’S PARTY LIKE IT’S LIBRARY CARD SIGN-UP MONTH! BECAUSE IT IS!


We’re looking at a press release from Long Beach Main Library manager Darla Wegener that's titled “Long Beach Celebrates Library Card Sign-Up Month.” Who knew? And the first paragraph says Library Card Sign-Up Month has been around since 1987. Who knew?

SOMEWHERE, A LITTLE FAT BOY WITH A LONG MEMORY IS SMILING


DOWNEY– The car dealer who illegally demolished much of the historic Johnie’s Broiler  in 2007, has lost his lawsuit against the city. An appeals court last week found  that a filing by auto dealer Ardas “Alex” Yanik had no merit and that Yanik failed to prove vague claims that the City of Downey was infected […]

SAVING THE LOS CERRITOS WETLANDS HAS ONLY JUST BEGUN


We-the-people have worked hard to get the Los Cerritos Wetlands into protective custody, but their oft-degraded condition means there's much more to do. The upgrades begin tonight with a 6:30 workshop at the Aquarium of the Pacific.

SEE THE EARLY PLANS FOR RESTORING THE WETLANDS AT AQUARIUM TONIGHT


Now that we-the-people own so many more acres of the Los Cerritos Wetlands, now that we have invested so much of our effort and perseverance and emotion to save them, standing on the edge of this crucial natural resource and scanning its inscrutable surface feels so truly … different—yeah … one hell of a lot different—than […]

COUNCIL TAKES FIRST STEP TOWARD DELIVERING ON MAYOR FOSTER’S THREAT TO LONG BEACH CITY WORKERS


Following through on a threat delivered by Mayor Bob Foster when he unveiled his proposed 2013 budget, the Long Beach City Council on Tuesday ordered the preparation of a ballot measure that would cut and limit the pay and benefits of the City’s non-public safety and mainly lower-paid employees. The vote was 6-2. City Attorney […]

LB QFILM FEST EXTENDS A LOCAL TRADITION AND A MOVIEMAKING MOVEMENT


"Elliot Loves," a comedy-drama about two crucial times in a Dominican-American's life in New York---at 9, as his mother's sidekick; at 21 and looking for love---exemplifies the variety in the 2012 QFilm Festival. "Elliot Love" screens at the Art Theatre tonight at 9:30.

FLORES-GIBSON TAKES AWHILE TO WARM UP, BUT THEN PACKS A WALLOP


Martha Flores-Gibson swung through Greater Long Beach Radio for a how-dee-do Thursday, and the latest Republican challenger to never-been-beaten Democrat Bonnie Lowenthal let everybody know who she is by announcing that the Lowenthal Dynasty is ... "over."

OUR APOLOGIES: A HARD WAY TO RELEARN JOURNALISM’S FIRST LESSON


Next Friday’s community meeting at iconic Berth 55—where the Port of Long Beach is forcing out four long-standing businesses to build a fire station—is still on. It’s set for Aug. 30 at 6 p.m., exactly as GreaterLongBeach.com reported Wednesday. However, nearly every other aspect of that report was incorrect—in some aspects, profoundly so—and represented  a […]

DEAD BODY FOUND LYING OUTSIDE LB CITY HALL; INFO SLOW FROM LBPD


A dead body was lying outside Long Beach City Hall as people arrived at the downtown civic center at a bit past 7 o’clock this morning. It went publicly unmentioned by the Long Beach Police Department for more than six hours

THEY WERE DANCIN’ IN THE STREETS—AND A HARDWARE STORE PARKING LOT


Nick Waterhouse brought his geeky get-down to Saturday night's Dancin' In The Streets---held in the parking lot of a downtown hardware store---the second of four 2012 Summer And Music events.

A HOW-TO-GET-HEALTHIER FAIR IN NORTH LONG BEACH ON FRIDAY AT 4 PM


Unite The Night, a healthier-community fair filled with music, games, food, activities and fun, will be presented to North Long Beach residents Friday at the LB Police Department’s North Division Substation (Del Amo Blvd. and Atlantic Ave.) from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. It’s free. The event was conceived and organized by the We Union […]

AGRARIAN TRADITION RENEWED TWICE WEEKLY, INCLUDING FRECKLED FARM KID


The Lincoln Spring Farmstand sells near-flawless vegetables and fruits grown on 1.5 acres of urban land---and tended by 12-year-old volunteer Eric Fuson---from a shaded wooden structure at Spring & Elm on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

AL AUSTIN: A CARPETBAGGER COMES HOME A WINNER


After losing a race in another district, then the support of Long Beach's power elite, Al Austin's 8th district neighbors elected him their councilmember.

THE GREATEST WAY TO REVITALIZE BIXBY PARK—GO THERE


Editor’s Note: Claudia Schou, one of the founders of Friends of Bixby Park, was a featured guest on the Feb. 1, 2012, edition of Greater Long Beach Radio. To listen to the interview any time, click here. +++++          +++++          +++++ The process of renovating Bixby Park can sometimes feel like an eternal purchase order, a manifest for […]

LISTEN TO ALICIA MURPHY & Sé REED SING AND BE SISTERLY


A link to Greater Long Beach Radio's delightful and moving interview with singer/songwriter Alicia Murphy and her older sister, Sé Reed, is available 24/7.

HAVE-A-GREATER BIXBY PARK: ART UNDER UMBRELLAS, JAZZ ATOP BAND SHELL


With two more events this weekend---the Arts Under The Umbrellas exhibit Saturday, the Poly Jazz Combo's regular evening gig Sunday---all the talk about Bixby Park's revitalization isn't just talk.

LISTEN AS ALMOST-A-COUNCILMAN AL AUSTIN ANSWERS EVERYTHING


Days before he joins the Long Beach City Council, Al Austin answers every question thrown at him by GreaterLongBeach.com publisher Dave Wielenga during a July 5 appearance on Greater Long Beach Radio. Listen!

HAV-A-GREATER WEEKEND: FIRST FRIDAY IN THE KNOLLS AND A FIRST-THING SATURDAY STROLL


Hav-A-Greater Weekend is not a command or strategy or even a guide to packing Friday, Saturday and Sunday with enough fun to get through the rest ofthe week. It's a shared response to our spontaneous inspiration ... and a wish: Hav-A-Greater Weekend!!!

WITHOUT STARRY NIGHTS, DO PEOPLE FORGET HOW TINY THEY ARE?


As city light obscures the celestial show that has humbled people through history, filmmaker Ian Cheney's "The City Dark" suggests "we're losing this reference point, a sense of perspective ... a sense of our place in space."

ROSE PARK RESIDENTS LEFT HANGING BY VERIZON’S HIGH-WIRE ACT


Rose Park residents have a 25-year resume of restoration and beautification, but have been helpless to stop Verizon from adorning the historic neighborhoods with hanging, dangling and tangled wires and equipment. Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal wants the City Attorney to explore legal options.

SURPRISE! SURPRISE! BOMGAARS RETIRES FROM BELLFLOWER CITY COUNCIL … BUT SUGGESTS A WAY HE COULD STAY


A year after voters elected him to a sixth term, Bellflower City Council member Randy Bomgaars concluded Tuesday night’s meeting by announcing that he will retire, effective June 20, so as to coincide with his June 21 retirement as a school teacher and maximize the benefits he receives from both pensions. But near the end […]

RAY BRADBURY IS OFF TO THE GREAT ACRES OF BOOKS IN THE SKY


Ray Bradbury left this world for the Acres of Books in the sky Tuesday night, dying at age 91. The writer who influenced  the world with the expansive flights of fantasy he presented as into vivid word-pictures never lost touch with the root of his special gift—the library of mankind. During much of the 20th century, a significant portion of […]

TRANSIT OF VENUS: FREE ADMISSION AT DOWNEY SPACE MUSEUM TO CELEBRATE A COSMIC SHORTCOMING


DOWNEY—From all the fuss, you’d think this thing they are calling the Transit of Venus might be something spectacularly creative or excellent—the title of a posthumous novel by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., or maybe an a transcendent telling of the arcing life story of Venus Williams … or howzabout the announcement of a previously undiscovered Greek myth? […]

BIKETOWN, USA: HAS LONG BEACH FINALLY FOUND AN AUTHENTIC IDENTITY?


In this cover story for OC WEEKLY, GreaterLongBeach.com publisher Dave Wielenga notes that Long Beach's push for bicycle-friendliness is part of an encouraging trend in the city's long search for an identity---actually identifying with Long Beach. But a history of wacky schemes has made people suspicious.

GIVE YOUR 2 CENTS ON $7 BILLION PROPOSAL FOR AN OC-TO-LA TRAIN LINE AT WEDNESDAY MEETING IN BELLFLOWER


The public is invited to an information-and-feedback meeting Wednesday evening in Bellflower regarding the proposed Orange Line, which would connect Los Angeles and Santa Ana—along with in-between towns like Downey, Paramount, Bellflower and Artesia—by running modern trains along the Pacific Electric right-of-ways that once carried the Red Car. The meeting, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 […]

A BLOCK FROM LIQUOR STORE DEE ANDREWS DEMOLISHED, HE’S COOL WITH TWO MARKETS SELLING BEER AND WINE


Less than 10 months after City Councilmember Dee Andrews denounced a former liquor store as a community “cancer” during a public party to observe and celebrate its demolition, his staff has been advising two applicants who today will seek permission from the Planning Commission to sell beer and wine in small markets a block away. […]

PORT OF LB NEEDS A PLACE TO CRASH AWHILE—REMEMBER THOSE DAYS?


The Port's basic predicament and plea are recognizable to me, and ignite a reaction. They almost palpably reconcoct the aura of uneasy bravura that pervaded that small batch of years. Anybody was apt to need a place to stay, for reasons like a lost job, an expired lease, a discount vacation, a romantic breakup or a home that couldn't be gone home to.

DAN PRESSBURG, AKA THE VOTER’S GUY, ANALYZES ELECTION ON GREATER LB RADIO TONIGHT


As the alarmingly small fraction of eligible Long Beach voters that will actually go to the polls Tuesday assess their preferences in races for seats on the City Council and School Board, tonight’s edition of Greater Long Beach Radio will be devoted to its first-ever Greater Long Beach Voter’s Guy. Greater Long Beach Radio, hosted by […]

HOW IS PRISON REALIGNMENT WORKING AFTER 6 MONTHS? GET ANSWERS AT TONIGHT’S CORR MEETING


The Public Safety Realignment will be six months old on April 1, but please don’t feel like a fool if you’re confused. Since the California legislature put it into effect on Oct. 1, 2011, by passing  Assembly Bill 109 (AB 109), the Realignment has produced far more questions than answers, and among the most common […]

DELONG VS LOWENTHAL: THE POLITICS OF CLOWNING & COUNTERCLOWNING


The Congressional race between Republican Gary DeLong and Democrat Alan Lowenthal is a war of words---sometimes almost the same words in nearly the same order---but never, ever spoken at the same time.

LEARN TO STOP ANIMAL CRUELTY (OR EVEN CRUELTY TO ANIMALS) ON MARCH 29


Long Beach City Prosecutor Doug Haubert (above) revealed Wednesday that he is joining forces with Long Beach Animal Care Services on a March 29 conference aimed at preventing animal cruelty. It's free.

MAYOR FOSTER ENDORSES KAWASAKI OVER HIS EX-ENDORSEE AUSTIN FOR 8TH DISTRICT CITY COUNCIL SEAT


Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster has endorsed Lillian Kawasaki in her race against Al Austin to represent the 8th District on the Long Beach City Council, according to a media advisory released just before 1 p.m. today by the Kawasaki campaign. Five years ago, it was Austin who received Foster’s endorsement for City Council—”I am […]

IF GOD WON’T SAVE THE QUEEN MARY, PETITIONERS HOPE THE MAYOR WILL


Disturbed by the Queen Mary’s condition after nearly 45 years under City of Long Beach ownership, ship supporters are circulating an online petition urging Mayor Bob Foster to protect restore and preserve her.

HAS AUSTIN’S FALL FROM THE MAYOR’S GRACE MADE HIM A CANDIDATE OF THE PEOPLE?


Al Austin’s candidacy for the 8th district seat on the Long Beach City Council continues to gather grass-roots support that tends to run counter to the endorsements of prominent elected officials in the area. The roughly 3-to-1 margin by which Austin was endorsed over Lillian Kawasaki at Tuesday evening’s meeting of the Los Angeles County […]

DOWNTOWN LB BUSINESS GROUP APPROVES ITS OWN PLAN TO FINANCIALLY ASSESS DOWNTOWN RESIDENCES


The Property Based Improvement District (PBID) plan proposed by the Downtown Long Beach Associates has been unanimously approved by the Downtown Long Beach Associates’ Board of Directors, according to a media advisory released by the Downtown Long Beach Associates and received by everybody else with absolutely no surprise. The vote by the Board of Directors […]

LAWSUIT ASSERTS REALIGNED PRISON SYSTEM MEANS VOTING RIGHTS FOR 85,000


A suit filed in the Court of Appeal asserts that a law which deprives people in state prison of the right to vote should not be applied to people who are not in state prison. If the court agrees, more than 85,000 people could vote in the November election.

WHO WAS IT WHO SAID, ‘MAKING IT MORE DIFFICULT FOR A POPULACE TO BE WELL-INFORMED IS VITAL FOR THE OPERATION OF THE OPERATORS?’


City Manager Pat West’s staff is making a budget presentation to the Long Beach City Council today, an agendized item about the “Fiscal Outlook for 2013 and Beyond.” Whoa! In the context of Long Beach’s current economic crisis—or perhaps even more importantly, its traditional inability to manage money, even when times are good—this seems like […]

SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES WILLIAMS AND LINAREZ DEBATE TONIGHT AT 7


Felton Williams and Ricardo Linarez, candidates for the District 2 seat on the Board of Education for the Long Beach Unified School District, will debate tonight from 7 to 8 at VeteransMemorial Park, 101 East 28th Street, Long Beach, 90806. Williams is not only the incumbent in this race but the current president of the […]

SOMETHING BAD HAPPENS TO LBSU BASKETBALL—WILL IT LEAD TO WORSE?


Long Beach State's loss to Cal State Fullerton in its final regular -season game Saturday probably means the 49ers must win this week's Big West Conference tournament to advance to the NCAA playoffs. Don Monson's team was in the same situation last year, and stayed home after UC Santa Barbara came out of nowhwere to win the tournament.

PUT YOUR FUNDS WHERE YOUR FRIENDSHIP IS TO BENEFIT BIXBY PARK


Friends of Bixby Park, the grassroots outfit that’s slowly but steadily revitalizing one of the most-historic public spaces in Long Beach, holds its second annual fundraiser Thursday evening at the Long Beach Museum of Art. Tickets still available.

LB CITY AUDITOR DOUD ENDORSES KAWASAKI IN 8TH DISTRICT RACE


Long Beach City Auditor Laura Doud has endorsed Lillian Kawasaki for the 8th district’s seat on the City Council, according to a media advisory from the Kawasaki campaign. “Now, more than ever, we need elected representatives devoted to being caretakers of the public trust and willing to be financial watchdogs,” said Doud, according to the […]

ONE QUESTION FOR … DAVID MALMUTH, AND IT’S NOT ABOUT SECOND+PCH


David Malmuth has developed architectural icons from Hollywood to Manhattan, but he's 0-for-2 in Long Beach---most recently when the City Council rejected his Second+PCH development in December. But the Academy Awards are being held tonight at the Kodak Theatre he developed, and we're wondering how he feels about that.

A CAROUSEL OF BUDGET EXCUSES BY WHOEVER’S STRINGS THE MAYOR WAS PULLING THIS WEEK


Long Beach city management—which in our view has become basically subordinate to a mayor without a vote—on Tuesday (Feb. 21) gave the city’s taxpayers a disturbing preview of its March 6 mid-year budget report. As previously reported on LBReport.com, the City Council majority that also seems to take orders from Mayor Bob Foster has previously […]

THE QUEST–OURS AND YOURS–FOR “THE GREATEST OF LONG BEACH” BEGINS


The Greatest of Long Beach is our shared mission to track down the greatness outside ourselves---but within the Greater Long Beach area---wherever in our vast and diverse region it may be, and in whatever form it may take. Now that's what we call a search party!

THE STATES OF TWO CITIES


Bellflower and Norwalk have scheduled State of the City addresses this week. The Bellflower City Council will present its annual State of the City luncheon around the theme, “Investing in Bellflower” on Thursday (Feb. 23) beginning at 11:30 a.m. at Simms Park, 16614 S. Clark Ave. The cost is $10 per person. Many of the […]

HOW TO PICK AN OSCAR-NIGHT FIGHT: WHINE ON ABOUT ‘BRIDESMAIDS,” “POTTER”


If you wanna be starting something at the Cinematheque Oscar Party, don't stop pointing out that doubling the candidates for Best PIcture was supposed to improve the chances for "other" kinds of films. But only 9 films were nominated, and none were of the "other" kind. Above, it appears Oscar just isn't wild about Harry, either.

GUNFIRE, SCREAMING AND POLICE CARS WITH BLARING SIRENS AT BIXBY PARK


GreaterLongBeach.com contributor Kat Peterson has just reported hearing gunfire at Bixby Park—between Ocean Blvd. and Broadway, and Cherry and Junipero—where a group of 20 or 30 mostly young people had been noisily congregating in the skate park. Shortly after hearing the gunshots, followed by screaming, Peterson said that Long Beach Police Department patrol cars went […]

LINAREZ’ LBUSD BOARD RUN ENDORSED BY THREE MEMBERS OF OTHER BOARDS


Board of Education members from three Greater Long Beach-area districts—Sergio Contreras of Westminster, Jose Luis Solache of Lynwood and Skyy Fisher of Compton—have endorsed Ricardo Linarez in his campaign to unseat Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) school board president Felton Williams. “I am honored to receive the endorsement of school board members in our […]

AN ERSTWHILE ATTORNEY’S EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT OF THE ART HE SEES IN THINGS


Former Deputy City Attorney Jim McCabe presents evidence of his photographic artistry during the first-ever exhibit of his digital images. About 20 examples of his art---which transforms in-plain-sight elements of our world into precise and personal observations---are on display in the Paradise Cafe through March 7.

WE’RE COOL WITH 12,000 GALLONS OF SEWAGE, BUT NOT 1/10-INCH OF RAIN


Beachgoers, have no fear! Not about the 12,000 gallons of sewage that gushed into the Los Angeles River last Saturday, anyway. Interim Long Beach Health Department chief Dr. Mauro Torno lifted a precautionary four-day closure of the city’s shoreline Wednesday evening, announcing that that tests of the local ocean waters show no sign they were […]

SORT OF TYPICALLY, COUNCIL SORT OF DECIDES TO SORT OF BAN POT OUTLETS


LONG BEACH—Faced with proposal to ban medical marijuana outlets that—whatever else its pros and cons—would have finally established a clear City of Long Beach policy on the contentious issue, the  City Council talked for two hours Tuesday night and then voted 8-1 to ban some outlets, temporarily permit others and revisit the issue later. Some […]

WANT TO BE APPOINTED TO LBUSD SCHOOL BOARD? APPLY NOW!


Applications are now available for anyone interested in completing David Barton’s term as the District 5 representative on the Board of Education for the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD). Barton, the board’s vice-president, had been elected to a term that will expire in July 2014, but unexpectedly resigned on Jan. 25, citing concerns about […]

MEDPOT VOTE PREP: GREATER LB RADIO’S ‘FOUR GUYS TALKING ABOUT POT’


City Clerk Larry Herrera pulls the winners of Long Beach's lottery for medical marijuana permits from a blue recycling bin because the machine purchased for the event was useless when somebody bought ping-pong balls that were too big for the pneumatic tubes. The Long Beach City Council may vote to ban dispensaries tonight.

ONE QUESTION FOR … LB CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE AND $181,000-A-YEAR LA CITY PENSION BENEFICIARY, LILLIAN KAWASAKI


[ The first installment in something like the fourth or fifth attempt to make this a weekly feature of GreaterLongBeach.com. Pray for us. ] The back story: Lillian Kawasaki is running to represent the 8th district seat on the Long Beach City Council at a time when the city is facing a budget deficit that […]

ALMOST 58 PERCENT OF DONORS TO LB COUNCIL CANDIDATES FROM OUTSIDE CITY


[ Editor's note: Individuals and entities living and operating Long Beach are legally allowed to contribute to the campaigns of candidates for Long Beach political offices. However, the out-of-city donors aren't affected environmentally (that is, in terms of such things as public services, taxes, infrastructure and air and water quality) by the decisions of those they help elect. […]

DOWNEY LAYING OFF STAFF ON ONE SIDE, PAYING OFF RETIREES ON THE OTHER


DOWNEY (Via DowneyBeat.com)—While the City of Downey is laying off employees and trying to plug a multi-million budget hole, documents show it has also been writing checks for six-figure, lump-sum retirement payouts. More than $249,000 in unused vacation and sick time was recently paid to former Fire Chief and Emergency Services Coordinator Mark Sauter, who retired […]

LB SIERRA CLUB ENDORSES LOWENTHAL, KAWASAKI FOR CITY COUNCIL


The Long Beach Area Group of the Sierra Club has announced its endorsements of 2nd district City Councilmember Suja Lowenthal and 8th district council candidate Lillian Kawasaki in their campaigns for seats on the Long Beach City Council. “Our interview committee was impressed by both candidates,” said Gabrielle Weeks, chairperson of the local Sierra Club […]

AS ELON MUSK UNVEILS TESLA MODEL X, WE BURN FOR THE LOVE THAT BURNED US


If Elon Musk’s just-this-side-of-disturbingly elfin head had not been turned on that fateful May 20 of 2010---when he seemed ready to propose putting a Tesla plant in Downey after snubbing $28.3 million in incentives from Long Beach---then maybe we'd be at the big party for the Model X.

GABELICH ENDORSES AL AUSTIN TO SUCCEED HER AS 8TH DISTRICT COUNCIL REP


Eighth District City Council candidate Al Austin, shown with his wife, Daysha, in a December 2011 photo, described his endorsement Tuesday by outgoing Councilmember Rae Gabelich as "an honor," but said this is a "pivotal time" for the 8th district and Long Beach as a whole.

GABELICH CALLS PRESS CONFERENCE—WILL SHE RUN FOR 3RD COUNCIL TERM?


Rae Gabelich, who is winding up her second term as the 8th district’s representative to the Long Beach City Council, has called a press conference for this morning at 11 a.m. amid speculation that she will seek a third term as a write-in candidate. Until last summer, Gabelich laughed off any talk of a third […]

OC WEEKLY STORY ON MEDPOT A DISTURBING LOOK AT LONG BEACH OFFICIALS


After approving medpot dispensaries in 2010 and conducting a fiasco of a lottery to determine their locations, the City Council is on the verge---twice delaying its vote--of outlawing them. Meanwhile, Long Beach collects millions in pot-related fees and fines, simultaneously permitting and prosecuting various dispensaries.

IF MONEY=SPEECH, RICHARDSON AND HAHN NEED RICHER VOCABULARIES


Political campaigns released their financial statements Wednesday, and the always-insightful Kevin Roderick of LAObserved.com points out a multi-million-dollar difference in contributions between two congressional primaries at opposite ends of Los Angeles County. Both races pit current Democratic Party members of the House of Representatives whose districts were redrawn, partially combined and renumbered. Down here in […]

COUNTDOWN TO THE OSCARS WITH LB CINEMATHEQUE’S MEMBERSHIP DRIVE


Logan Crow beside the box office of the Art Theater, which is where LB Cinematheque is holding its Oscar Party on Feb 26---and which is next door to Art Du Vin, where from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. tonight you can party and participate in the film organization's membership drive.

RAINEY HIRES LAW FIRM TO REMOVE HER NAME FROM SCHOOL BOARD BALLOT


Former Board of Education candidate Naomi Rainey announced via e-mail today that she has hired a specialized law firm to “do everything legally possible” to save the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) the expense of running an election by having her name removed from the ballot. Rainey announced the withdrawal of her candidacy for […]

DON’T EXPECT DRAMA IN SCHOOL BOARD SEARCH TO REPLACE BARTON


Dr. David Barton’s resignation Wednesday from the Board of Education of the Long Beach Unified School District puts an unexpected item on the agenda—and perhaps atop the list of priorities—at the Board’s next meeting on Feb. 7: finding a replacement. Although there is a Board of Education election scheduled for April, voters will not determine […]

IS TRIAL OF MAN SHOT BY LBPD OFFICERS STRATEGY TO REDUCE CIVIL DAMAGES?


Jonathan Cabrera, still recovering from the bullet wounds he received last May 14 when Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) officers opened fire into the apartment he shared with his wife, went on trial Thursday (Jan. 26) on a felony charge of obstructing or resisting a law enforcement officer. “The only reason for this felony charge is the City […]

RAINEY: ELECTIONS SHOULDN’T BE CANCELED, EVEN WITHOUT COMPETITION


Former school board candidate Naomi Rainey asserted today in a statement released by the NAACP that the Long Beach Unified School District ought to conduct regularly scheduled elections for seats on the Board of Education even when all candidates are unopposed. “The Long Beach Unified School District should be having elections whether there is one person running or […]

UNFORTUNATELY, LBUSD DIDN’T SAVE $200,000 FOR THIS ‘RAINEY’ DAY


Ten days ago Naomi Rainey, the longtime president of Long Beach’s chapter of the NAACP, announced she was running for Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) Board of Education. Three days later, Rainey announced she was not running. On Friday, however, Rainey learned that there’s more to running for public office—or not running for it—than just […]

HAVA•GREATER•WEEKEND: SOCAL’S FIRST PARKLET OPENS TODAY AT NOON


[EDITOR'S NOTE: HaveAGreaterWeekend is your preparedness guide for the most-important days of your life---the weekend. Suggestions are welcome, so long as you send them at least three weeks before the event---and never forget who makes the final call.] If you are anywhere but Fourth Street’s Retro Row today at noon, consider yourself doomed to a […]

DELONG’S CONGRESSIONAL BID ENDORSED BY LB CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


Long Beach City Councilmember Gary DeLong announced via a press release this morning that his run for the newly formed 47th Congress District against state Senator Alan Lowenthal has been endorsed by the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce Political Action Committee. “It is an honor to have the Chamber’s endorsement,” said DeLong, according to […]

AL WILLIAMS: NOT JUST THE FACE OF LIVE JAZZ IN LB, BUT ITS HEART, TOO


Al Williams has made a name for himself--and pretty good money, too---as driving force of live jazz in Long Beach, but his support Maxie Viltz's upstart club in the Basement Lounge (where he headlines Thursday) is the true measure of his commitment to the music.

SUJA GETS CHALLENGER ON FRIDAY-THE-13TH DEADLINE FOR COUNCIL CANDIDATES


LONG BEACH (Via LBReport.com)—On Friday the 13th and, let’s hope only coincidentally, the final day for candidates for this year’s Long Beach City Council elections, the fields for races in the 2nd, 4th and 6th districts—were finalized. The biggest surprise heading into the final day was the emergence of a homeowners-group challenger to Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal in […]

POOR RICHARDSON’S ALMANAC: IN TODAY’S ENTRY, GARAMENDI ENDORSES JANICE HAHN


Poor Richardson’s Almanac—the ever-expanding catalogue of Greater Long Beach-area Congresswoman Laura Richardson’s never-ending woes—received its latest entry from RollCall.com, where Kyle Trygstad reports: Congressman John Garamendi, a Democrat from a Northern California district, has announced his support for Janice Hahn in her attempt to win the congressional seat that Richardson currently occupies. It is the second endorsement Hahn […]

HERE’S WISHING YOU HOT DOG OF A NEW YEAR—WRAPPED IN BACON, OF COURSE


DOWNEY (Via DowneyBeat.com)– There are fundamental questions one must ask oneself while trying to make sense of this mortal coil. What is the meaning of life? Do I matter? And, finally, “Got Bacon?” Papas and Dogs, a small, brightly decorated new gourmet hot dog joint at 8740Firestone Boulevard in Downey can now answer that third important query. […]

LB COUNCIL STANDS UP FOR ZONING LAWS, ENCOURAGES COLLABORATION, KILLS SECOND+PCH PROJECT


The Long Beach City Council killed the proposed Second+PCH development late Tuesday evening with a 5-3 vote that supported master planning over spot zoning, laid groundwork for long-polarized community factions to collaborate on revised development standards and bore no resemblance to the alliances that had come to characterize this panel of governing officials. After more […]

BEYOND GREATER:* CONGRESSMAN IS NUTSY FOR NAZI REFERENCES


WASHINGTON, D.C. (Via Rollcall.com)—Freshman Rep. Allen West is stirring things up by comparing the Democratic Party to Nazis again. In an interview with several reporters Thursday, the Florida Republican blamed Democratic messaging for a recent poll that showed Americans blame the GOP more for Capitol Hill gridlock. “If Joseph Goebbels was around, he’d be very […]

JOHN DIXON’S JOURNALISM: DOING YOUR BEST TO TELL THE TRUTH


The profile of John Dixon by Jim McCormack compies slices of true life that are mostly examples of Dixon's concern about the state of journalism---and Dixon's typical response: to reach into his own integrity for the right thing to do, then to reach into his own courage to put that thing into action.

TIME FOR WOULD-BE CANDIDATES TO FILE—OR THEY WON’T BE CANDIDATES


Four seats on the Long Beach City Council will be assigned by voters who live in even-numbered districts in 2012—the ones currently being warmed by Suja Lowenthal (2nd), Patrick O’Donnell (4th), Dee Andrews (6th) and Rae Gabelich (8th)—and it’s just about time for would-be candidates to stop dropping hints and start throwing hats into rings … […]

REMEMBERING DOUG ZERBY: NO WORDS TO WARN HIM, BUT PLENTY TO BLAME HIM


Tonight's candlelight vigil at the Long Beach Police Department marks one year since Doug Zerby---drunk and playing with a water nozzle at his Belmont Shore apartment complex---was gunned down without warning by officers Victor Ortiz and Jeffrey Shurtleff, who say they thought the nozzle was a pistol.

JUDGES’ NEW PARKING LOT IS A BEAUTY, BUT THE $1.156-MILLION BILL IS A BEAST


The 8,500-square-foot parking structure just built for judges at Norwalk Superior Court is beautiful—according to the Norwalk City Council/Redevelopment Agency, which has approved the finish project … and it has come in $51,000 under budget. That’s good news, although maybe not quite as indicative of financial frugality as it sounds. The new venue for the […]

GREATER LONG BEACH GIFT GUIDE: IT’S WHAT WE GOT YOU THIS YEAR


Long Beach is crawling with interesting and unique places to pick up something for everyone on your list, and holiday shopping can actually be an interesting way to explore the city in all its quirky weirdness. To get started, check out this list of unique Long Beach shops.

SECOND+PCH WILL LIKELY HAVE TO RETURN ITS HOLIDAY GIFT FROM CITY


Second+PCH developer David Malmuth may have gotten a gift from Long Beach officials who scheduled a City Council hearing on the wildly out-of-code development for five days before Christmas. But Long Beach city code and California law prohibit the City Council and Coastal Commission from approving against-zoning-law plans. Eventually, he'll probably have to return it.

LAST CHANCE TO GET YOUR ‘MERRY GENTLEMAN’ ON AT LB SYMPHONY HOLIDAY CONCERT TODAY AT 2


No, dude, I don’t know if there is a dress code for the Long Beach Symphony’s exquisite presentation of holiday music, which—and I’m guaranteeing this, without even knowing you—at several points is going to feature musical notes in combinations that will function like sonic access codes to some of the most resonant moments of your life. […]

JOHN DIXON’S DEATH SILENCES ANOTHER ECHO OF PRESS-TELEGRAM’S GLORY DAYS


John Dixon, whose 15 years as sports editor of the Independent, Press-Telegram (I,P-T) were arguably the greatest in that department’s history as well as the best of his four decades at the once-great Long Beach daily newspaper, died Tuesday afternoon at age 86. Dixon suffered a heart attack and stroke about a month ago. After […]

FIRST OCCUPY LONG BEACH PROTESTER CONVICTED FOR REFUSING TO LEAVE PARK


Jonathan Glen Davidson of Cerritos on Monday became the first protester associated with the Occupy Long Beach movement to be convicted under the city ordinance that prohibits anyone from being in a public park after its 10 p.m. closing time. According to a press release from the City Prosecutor’s office, the jury deliberated only 23 […]

‘O LITTLE TOWN OF BELLFLOWER…’ AND OTHER HOLIDAY FAVORITES


For 10 years, Bellflower's earnest December tradition of lighting the downtown Christmas tree has been the struggling city's holiday card to itself. This year, however, the Tree Lighting Ceremony is nothing less than a classic rescue-of-Christmas television special waiting to happen. Read about it in the GreaterLongBeach.com holiday calendar.

BELLFLOWER COUNCIL WILL RUBBER STAMP ITS CITY MANAGER CHOICE


The Bellflower City Council will meet Monday evening to rubber stamp the unanimous decision it has already made to appoint Jeffrey Stewart as city manager with a three-year contract—and options for two more years—that features an annual salary of $191,000, plus benefits. (For the time being, that salary is reduced to $171,000 by Bellflower’s ongoing […]

GET YOUR ‘MERRY GENTLEMAN’ ON AT LB SYMPHONY’S HOLIDAY CELEBRATION CONCERT


No, dude, I don’t know if there is a dress code for the Long Beach Symphony’s exquisite presentation of holiday music, which—and I’m guaranteeing this, without even knowing you—at several points is going to feature musical notes in combinations that will function like sonic access codes to some of the most resonant moments of your life. […]

IT’S BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE … WELL, CERTAINLY NOT THANKSGIVING


The final countdown toward Thanksgiving has begun, and the anticipation is almost palpable. Families across America will soon gather at one of their homes, eat a mid-afternoon dinner---and give thanks that it's almost December, when the really good holidays arrive.

IN THE END, TRADITION RETAINS HER CROWN AT MISS LONG BEACH PAGEANT


Kristin Bopp, a 23-year-old student at Cal State Long Beach whose extensive experience as a beauty pageant contestant includes the Miss Greater Lakewood title of 2010, was selected Miss Long Beach on Sunday evening at the Grand Events Center.  The crowning brought a dramatic—and traditional—conclusion to an event that had returned to the public’s radar this […]

‘SUJAPALOOZA’ CANCELLED VIA E-MAIL BY ITS MUM’S-THE-WORD PROMOTER … BECAUSE IT MAY RAIN


The same somebody who employed the message board of a political website Friday to announce a Sunday-night concert/demonstration/costume party to criticize and mock Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal deployed an e-mail this evening to call the whole thing off. “Event cancelled due to high chance of rain,” read the e-mail—from somebody who says his name is […]

‘SUJAPALOOZA’ PROTEST CONCERT CALLED FOR SUNDAY AT ROSE PARK, 6 PM


A free concert—dubbed “SujaPalooza” in reference to Long Beach Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal—is being planned for Sunday night from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Rose Circle Park (8th Street at Orizaba Ave), according to a notice posted by a group called Conscious Cinema on the politically progressive website Democracy For America/Orange County. “Conscious Cinema […]

HAVE A GREATER WEEKEND: GODDESSES, PAGEANTS AND REGRETS


From D.W. "El Imagenero" Gastelum's photographic tribute to Eve in the Garden of Eden at the Art Theatre ... to Greggory Moore's performance-style reading from his wonderfully titled first novel at Gatsby Books ... to Jenelle Hutcherson's bid to become the first lesbian Miss Long Beach at the Grand Long Beach Events Center --- this weekend ought to leave you feeling greater.

OCCUPYLONGBEACH BOISTEROUSLY DISRUPTS LB CITY COUNCIL MEETING


Participants in OccupyLongBeach cranked up the volume on their ongoing protest during Tuesday night’s meeting of the Long Beach City Council by calling upon city officials to permit camping in local parks and establish a so-called “free-speech zone.” When those demands were not immediately met, disrupting the meeting to the extent that it was temporarily […]

BELLFLOWER’S LATEST STAMPEDE FOR SCHOOL BOARD ENDS TODAY


Eight candidates are seeking three seats on the school board of the Bellflower Unified School District, but incumbents in the Downey and Paramount Unified School Districts are unopposed. The flurry of interest surrounding the available seats on the Bellflower Unified board is rather typical for the district, which has a history of campaign histrionics that […]

PATCHWORK IS TODAY, RAIN OR SHINE—PLEASE DON’T BE A WUSS


The Patchwork Indie Arts & Crafts Festival features about 100 booths stuffed with creative people and the stuff---clothing, accessories, art, pottery and glassware, pet items, jewelry, soaps, candles, stationary and paper goods, plushies, purses, handbags, gourmet chocolate with sea salt on it---they have created. Sure hope it doesn't rain..

PROMOTER SAYS CITY’S DEMANDS WEAKENED ZOMBIE WALK, LEFT HIM 40K IN DEBT


In an interview with Logan Crow that will be featured tonight on 'Greater Long Beach Radio with Dave Wielenga,' the promoter of last Saturday's (Oct. 29) Zombie Walk charges that incessant demands and fees by the City of Long Beach diminished the event and left him $40,000 in debt. Listen tonight at 7 p.m. on KBEACH.org

LARRY ALLISON’S DEATH AT 77 ENDS 54-YEAR-CAREER AT PRESS-TELEGRAM


Larry Allison, who at one point or another during a 54-year career with the Press-Telegram did just about every job in the newsroom, died Sunday evening. According to the Press-Telegram website, Allison died after a two-week battle with pneumonia. He was 77. Allison’s career at the Press-Telegram began in 1957 and included stints as a […]

SECOND BIXBY PARK HALLOWEEN CARNIVAL SHOWED PROMISE AND PRACTICE


The arrival of the second annual Bixby Park Halloween Carnival shows promise, not only for the event, but for efforts to revitalize the historic park. It's good practice, too, getting people back in the habit of coming to Bixby Park as it recovers from some difficult times.

TODAY’S PEACE & JUSTICE SUMMIT CONSIDERS RE-ENTRY ISSUES OF EARLY-RELEASED PRISONERS


The Long Beach Community Peace & Justice Summit convenes this morning in the Seaside Ballroom of the Convention & Entertainment Center, where challenges and opportunities presented by the early release of perhaps 30,000 prisoners in California will be identified, discussed and, perhaps, even solved. Admission is free, and not only open to the public, but […]

KNOW YOUR HISTORY: THE HALF-DOZEN GREATEST ZOMBIE HUNTERS EVER


You don't have to have brains to be a great zombie hunter. In fact, a certain empty-headed quality seems to help. And so it is that the half-dozen greatest zombie hunters, stalkers and killers in history turn out to be a motley collection. Wherever in the world they come from, they also come from the edges of society, the edges of sanity, the edges of life itself.

ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE: ONE QUESTION … FOR COUNCILMAN ROBERT GARCIA


We ask comic-book-geek and Superman fan Robert Garcia (that's him on the right) who would win if Superman and Zombie Superman (that's not him on the left ... is it?) cross paths during Zombie Walk/Comic-Con weekend and get in a fight. Of course, the Long Beach City Council member has an answer. A couple of 'em.

IF YOU’RE NOT OCCUPIED, LONG BEACH IS AVAILABLE THREE TIMES THIS WEEKEND


According to a press release, Occupy Long Beach will stage three marches this weekend—two Saturday, one Sunday—to emphasize the lopsided distribution of wealth among the people of the United States and to confirm the continuing commitment of its members in Long Beach. The first march is scheduled for Lincoln Park—part of downtown’s civic center complex—on […]

ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE: KNOW YOUR ENEMY–WATCH ZOMBIE FLICKS


The best odds of survival against any enemy or scourge---from the Mongols to the Magyars to that damn Dancing Baby---are rooted in learning as much as possible about the adversary. When facing an attack of zombies, that means watching lots of movies. For more tips, search: Zombie Survival Guide

TONIGHT! RICKY HARRIS’ COMEDY BENEFIT FOR V.I.P. RECORDS AT LAUGH FACTORY


Comedian Ricky Harris, who 20 years ago was among a crew of kids who passed through V.I.P. Records on their way to stardom, will host a benefit show at The Laugh Factory this Sunday at 8 p.m. in hopes of helping to save Long Beach’s iconic record shop.

A GREATER CALIFORNIA: MIKE EVANS SEES IT GROWING IN YOUR FRONT YARD


California native plant expert and missionary Mike Evans---a sort of Johnny Appleseed to the salvia set---will share simple instructions (and very good reasons) for replacing a grass lawn with a garden of indigenous plants at 6:30 p.m. on November at the Groundwater Treatment Plant. The free event is co-sponsored by GreaterLongBeach.com and the Water Department.

OCCUPYLONGBEACH: IN IT FOR THE LONG HAUL–THAT IS, UNTIL THE 10 PM CURFEW


OccupyLongBeach deployed its first official occupation Saturday at Lincoln Park, where approximately 300 people convened, marched, demonstrated and dispersed without any of the conflict that seemed to have been foreshadowed in prickly press releases from the social-justice movement and the Long Beach Police Department.

ONE QUESTION … FOR LAKEWOOD HIGH CIVICS TEACHER WENDY SALAYA


Last year she and Assemblymember Warren Furutani helped her senior students conceive, write and lobby a bill through the California Assembly. This year's senior were supposed to take the bill through the state Senate and the Governor's desk. But Furutani is running for LA City Council who knows if the new kids will be into it. What's Salaya going to do?

LOWENTHAL’S SPEECH LIFTED BIXBY PARK BEYOND REHAB … TO RELEVANCE


By delivering her State of the Second District address from the historic band shell at Bixby Park, Council member Suja Lowenthal gave the park's restoration movement the best kind of validation---re-establishing it as a center stage for Long Beach's most-important events.

LA PALMA COPS SUE CITY, COMPLAIN TO STATE AND TAKE THE INITIATIVE


LA PALMA (Via Los Cerritos News)—The La Palma Police Association has filed two lawsuits against the city, registered an unfair labor practices complaint with the state and is gathering signatures for an election initiative that would earmark some of the city’s utility tax for public safety—money that currently goes to the general fund. The flurry of […]

VAL LERCH FINDS LIFE AFTER CITY COUNCIL: WORKING FOR LAURA RICHARDSON


There was relief in the voice of former Long Beach City Council member Val Lerch Friday when he was hired as a field representative by Congresswoman Laura Richardson, ending well over a year without a job. "It's been a long and difficult time," said Lerch, "But politics is what I truly enjoy."

HIP-HOP COMEDIAN RICKY HARRIS TALKS ABOUT V.I.P RECORDS TONIGHT AT 7 ON GREATER LONG BEACH RADIO


Ricky Harris, who may have epitomized the wave of show-business stars that rose out of Central Long Beach in the 1990s—and is second to none in acknowledging the debt they owe Kelvin Anderson of soon-to-close V.I.P. Records—is the featured guest on tonight’s episode of Greater Long Beach with Dave Wielenga. The hour-long show goes live […]

ON THE DAY THERE IS NO MORE V.I.P., CAN WHAT’S LEFT REALLY BE THE LBC?


A few years after Kelvin Anderson built a small recording studio V.I.P. Records to keep the neighborhood kids out of trouble, those kids became some of the biggest names---Snoop Dogg, Warren G, Nate Dogg, Daz---in the world of popular music.But business has gone bad, and Anderson says he is closing V.I.P. Records.

OC DISTRICT ATTORNEY TO REVEAL OFFICIAL VERSIONS OF KELLY THOMAS’ DEATH, COPS’ INVOLVEMENT—AND …


Orange County District Attorney (OCDA) Tony Rackaukus will hold a press conference at 11 a.m. today to discuss what charges—if any—he will file against six Fullerton Police Department officers in conjunction with the death of homeless schizophrenic Kelly Thomas in July. Rackaukus received a report Tuesday from the Orange County Coroner regarding the cause of […]

AS JOHNSON FACES RECALL, A LOOK BACK AT HIS CANDIDACY


A version of this article---based on an interview with James Johnson when he was running for the 7th District seat on the Long Beach City Council---first appeared in January 2010. It is re-published to provide context to a citizens' group's attempt to recall Johnson.

RECALL JAMES JOHNSON GROUP GOES PUBLIC, IN A PRIVATE KIND OF WAY


Proponents of an effort to recall 7th district city council member James Johnson made their first public statement Wednesday during a press event outside Johnson’s field office at Admiral Kidd Park, but still kept their cards close to the vest. Mike Kowal, a longtime activist in the 8th district—in fact, the only announced candidate for […]

RECALL JAMES JOHNSON COMMITTEE TO PRESENT CHARGES THIS AFTERNOON


The Recall James Johnson Committee, which on Tuesday announced its intention to circulate recall petitions against the 7th district’s representative on the Long Beach City Council, says that it will present a list of charges this afternoon—among them “Neglected Duties; Incompetent Performance; and Misuse of his Office.” The group’s media advisory states that “community leaders […]

LB THEATRES WILL COLLABORATE…WHEN MARLON DELEON FINDS RIGHT DATE


Before the Long Beach Theatre Arts Collaborative can work together to strengthen the local theatre community, somebody's got to find a time and date and place for the group to meet---one which fits into every representative's schedule. That somebody is Marlon DeLeon. On Tuesday, he gave it a try . . .

WHAT DOES DOWNEY TASTE LIKE? I’LL PUT IT THIS WAY: YOU JUST MADE ME REEEEELLY, REEEELLY HONGRY


DOWNEY (Via The Downey Patriot) – What does Downey taste like? And don’t say “chicken” … unless we’re going to Toyitos—and you’re buying. Otherwise, it kind of depends on what you’re in the mood for. And if you can’t make up your mind, simmer down until Sept. 30, when the area around city hall will be transformed […]

BIXBY PARK NEIGHBORHOODS SAY PUBLIC-SAFETY CUTS HURTING RESTORATION


In a letter to council member Gary DeLong and Suja Lowenthal, seven neighborhod associations say cuts in public safety measures at Bixby Park are contributing to increasingly flagrant illegal behavior at Bixby Park, including public drinking and drug use, drug dealing, overnight camping, littering and loitering, and a gang fight during a children’s theater festival.

ONE QUESTION … FOR SNIPPED-FROM-HIS DISTRICT CANDIDATE MIKE KOWAL


The back story: Back in April, Mike Kowal became the first candidate in the 2012 campaign for the Long Beach City Council. Kowal filed to run in the 8th District, where Rae Gabelich faces the term-limit ordinance after serving eight years. Kowal has lived in the 8th district—in the same home—for nearly 30 years while […]

DEFENDING THE CAVEMAN—AND THE DOWNEY CIVIC THEATRE LINEUP


"Defending the Caveman"---straight from the GEICO commercials, we're assuming---is among the acts booked for the Downey Civic Theatre by a company with a $400,000 contract from the City Council to manage the long troubled facility. The other acts? America, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and two dudes from Los Lobos. That's right, $400,000.

NO MORE $100,000 RAISES: BILL WOULD LIMIT SALARIES OF CSU PRESIDENTS


Responding to the $400,000 salary recently awarded to the incoming president of San Diego State—over widespread objections led by the governor and at the same meeting where tuition was again sharply increased—state Senator Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) has introduced a bill that would limit the salaries that California State University trustees can pay to campus presidents. […]

JENSEN’S PLANE CRASH RECOVERY CONTINUES: HE’S GETTING STRONGER, GIVING THANKS


Mike Jensen, the lone survivor of a March 16 private plane crash at the Long Beach Airport that killed the five other passengers, posted an online update on his recovery Tuesday—the first one on the site in 2 ½ months. Jensen gave the new accounting of his condition on CaringBridge.org, which his family has been […]

LB COUNCIL ALLOTS 90 MINUTES FOR 5 BUDGET ISSUES, BUT MAKES TIME TO KISS KNABE’S BUNDT


LONG BEACH (via LBReport.com)—Someone inside City Hall has crammed five of the most-significant subjects in City of Long Beach budget debate—police, fire, code enforcement, libraries and parks—into a special Council meeting … that will last only 90 minutes … and begins at 3 in the afternoon.  Yes, this afternoon. Such curious scheduling obviously raises some […]

MEET THE NEW-FI … SAME AS THE LO-FI—AND THAT’S A GOOD THING


The New Fidelity remains as relevant a presence and influence on the Long Beach music scene today as it was more than 10 years ago, when Dan Perkins’ outfit was called Lo-Fi Champion and shared bills with an almost completely different cast of contemporaries.

LONG BEACH AND PARAMOUNT SEAL DEAL ON JOINT WATER-WELL PROJECT


The objective of the joint project is to reduce both cities’ reliance on the faraway---and increasingly expensive---water sources tapped by the Metropolitan Water District (MWD), which transports water from Central California via the aqueduct and from the Colorado River.

ON GREATER LONG BEACH RADIO: COUPLE WHOSE CASTLE WAS BLASTED BY LBPD


Jonathan Cabrera and Elizabeth Bustamante were just back from church and preparing for bed just before midnight on May 14 when Long Beach Police Department officers opened fire on them in their central-city home, wounding Cabrera. On this week's Greater Long Beach Radio, the couple recounts the horrific details of that night and shares their hopes for transforming it into a positive experience.

NO BUTTS ABOUT IT, CORDERO’S HARBOR COMMISSION CHAIR STILL EMPTY


Mayor Bob Foster ignored a public-access provision of state law when he appointed Doug Drummond to the Harbor Commission, and Councilmember Gerrie Schipske has postponed today's meeting of the Personnel & Civil Service Committee until he complies. Meanwhile, former Commissioner Mario Cordero's chair remains derriere-less.

A WIDE, WILD RANGE OF “STEWARDS” MAKE 2ND DISTRICT A SPECIAL PLACE


(UPDATED TO EMPHASIZE CEREMONY IS TONIGHT): A diverse assortment of more than 50 residents, groups, businesses and city staff will be honored by Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal as Stewards of the Second District this evening  at Bixby Park Band Shell. The 7 p.m. event is open to the public. Honorees range from Jewels, Long Beach’s […]

BUILDING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES/LB FIRST IS BUILDING STEERING COMMITTEE


Fourteen people have been elected to two-year terms on the steering committee of Building Healthy Communities/Long Beach, a 10-year initiative that will spend millions of dollars in the central and west parts of the city to improve health through support changes in policy and awareness of healthy foods and physical activity. Seven slots on the […]

BUILDING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES GROUP ELECTS STEERING COMMITTEE TODAY


Members of Building Healthy Communities/Long Beach are gathering downtown at St. Luke’s Church this morning to eat a continental breakfast and to elect 21 people to their steering committee—that is, to guide the group toward the best ways, places and programs to spend millions of dollars in grants during the next two years. The Building […]

RENE CASTRO RE-ELECTED UNOPPOSED TO CHAIR LB GRIP ADVISORY COMMITTEE


Rene Castro was re-elected as chair of the Long Beach Gang Reduction, Intervention and Prevention Project (LB GRIP) Advisory Committee without opposition during the group’s meeting Monday night at the Center For Working Families, located on Atlantic Avenue at 19th Street. But new faces were elected to the other offices—Claudette Powers as vice chair and […]

COUNCIL QUARTET WANTS CITY MANAGER TO DEVISE VIOLENCE PLAN IN 90 DAYS


With police numbers falling, replacements deemed unaffordable and bullets flying in his district, Long Beach City Council member Robert Garcia—Mayor Bob Foster’s choice to chair the Public Safety Committee—has come up with a proposal for dealing with the city’s violence: make City Manager Pat West solve the problem … and fast. Garcia and three colleagues—Patrick […]

THE MAN WHO SAVED THE ART … UNTIL THE MAN WHO SAVED THE ART


In the uncertain days before the row was retro, the most-constant sight on 4th Street was the Art Theatre box office, which glowed as reassuringly as a lighthouse. Inside was Howard Linn, the frail, bald man who for years nurtured the faded-glory movie house until its ultimate rescuer came along.

LB CITY MANAGER’S POST-RDA REVIEW AND ANALYSIS NAMES NAMES OF CITY’S REPRESENTATIVES IN SACRAMENTO


In the wake of the Governor Jerry Brown’s signing of budget bills that discontinued California redevelopment agencies, Long Beach City Manager Pat West sent this letter to elected officials, city management and staff, providing an early sense of what the change will mean. Despite its litany of challenges, the straightforwardness of West’s assessment is refreshing—as […]

DESPITE DENIALS, DELONG PUSHING ABC TO RESTRICT 2ND STREET BARS


GreaterLongBeach.com has obtained a March 18 letter from Long Beach City Councilmember Gary DeLong to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) that runs contrary to his repeated assertions that he has not used his office to pressure the ABC to be tougher on Belmont Shore bars. [UPDATED WITH FULL TEXT OF DELONG'S LETTER AND REQUESTED CONDITIONS.]

OUTSIDE LB POLICE AWARDS, SMALL GROUP PROTESTS COP VIOLENCE


About a dozen people from the Long Beach Campaign to Stop Police Violence demonstrated Wednesday afternoon outside the 43rd annual Long Beach Police Awards ceremony at the Carpenter Center for the Performing Arts. The group is a subsidiary of the Los Angeles-based ANSWER Coalition. In a statement on its website and e-mailed to media outlets, […]

ON FATHER’S DAY, A TRIBUTE TO MY DRIVING FORCE


My dad and I have often spoken to each other loudly and self righteously, although not always very effectively. But when it comes to driving, our perspectives seem to merge---and merging is the maneuver that tests the skills and attitudes my dad holds dearest, in driving and in life. He knows we all share the same road. He believes we can share it peacefully. Me, too.

REDESIGNING THE 710: EVERY (HIDDEN) PICTURE TELLS A STORY, DON’T IT?


Taxpayers are funding a massive expansion of the 710 Freeway, but the consultants and public employees who are designing it (their salaries also paid by taxpayers) have announced that the public (that is, taxpayers) will not be allowed to see illustrations of the project until 2012.

PROJECT ERANOS TO PERFORM AT RELAY FOR LIFE LUMINARIA CEREMONY


As if walking, jogging, skipping, running—the point is, moving—with hundreds of others toward a cure for cancer in a Relay for Life weren’t its own reward, participants in the American Cancer Society event at California High in Whittier on Saturday will be treated to a performance by the musical group, project ERANOS. The classically trained […]

FUNDRAISER TONIGHT AT PIZZA PI FOR FIRED LB HILTON HOUSEKEEPERS


A fundraiser for the Fired Hilton Five—the handful of housekeepers who allege their April 20 firing by the Long Beach Hilton was retaliation for speaking up about their working conditions—will be held this evening at Pizza Pi, 649 E. Broadway, Long Beach, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Pizza Pi will donate 15 percent of food […]

THE CHERIN GROUP ACQUIRED BY ENGLANDER KNABE & ALLEN


The Cherin Group, a law firm founded in 2010 by former City Hall and Port of Long Beach official Alex Cherin, ostensibly to facilitate the attraction of green-technology firms to Long Beach, has been acquired by he public relations and lobbying firm of Englander Knabe & Allen. According to an announcement from Englander Knabe & Allen, […]

PIECES OF A MAN: FOR GIL SCOTT-HERON, THEY WERE FRAGMENTS OF TRUTH


There was a time when, if you truly wanted the world's long-hidden to be revealed, if you were truly ready for the world's long habits to be rethought, Gil Scott-Heron could show you, provoke you, with an anger so truthful it was ultimately pure love.

SUNDAY FUNDRAISER AT CURLEY’S CAFE TO SAVE LBUSD MIDDLE SCHOOL SPORTS


A dinner to help raise the $380,000 needed to restore middle school sports programs to the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) will be held June 5—that’s this Sunday evening—at Curley’s Café in Signal Hill. The suggested donation is $35; all proceeds go to the Long Beach Education Foundation. The event is presented by Progressive […]

MARY THOITS AMONG 27 SENIORS HONORED FOR LIVES OF VOLUNTEERISM


Mary Thoits of the Long Beach City College Senior Studies Center is among 27 seniors honored by Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe on the 46th annual Older Americans Recognition Day for the contributions they make to the quality of life by volunteering.

‘WATCH THIS BOOK’: FREE SERIES STARTS SATURDAY WITH ‘TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD’


Sure, everybody always says they liked the book more than the movie, but sometimes the movie is so perfectly cast and executed that you can never read the book again without imagining the characters as anyone else but the movie actors and the scenes as anything but the Hollywood sets.

BELLFLOWER’S GOT BLUES SO BAD ITS COUNCIL WON’T LET YOU SING ‘EM


The Bellflower City Council has overturned the decision of its planning commission and unanimously rejected an application by the owners of Long Beach’s sorely missed Blue Dog Tavern to reopen in a long-empty former firehouse in the struggling city’s ghostly downtown. After a two-hour interview with the Blue Dog’s co-owners, Cheri Dessero and Robert Martinson, the council decided the blues club does […]

ON THE DAY AFTER THE END OF THE WORLD, THE PEOPLE PARADED WITH PRIDE


On the day after the end of the world, the people held a parade. A big crowd showed up, and it seemed to include just about every kind of somebody. They found happiness in the silliest of things---even stuff that was just plain stupid---and they just couldn’t seem to get enough.

WELL, I’LL BE DAMNED … THEY WERE RIGHT!


The world really ended Saturday, just as a small segment of Christians predicted. The lack of preparedness left lots of issues unresolved---the outcome of the NBA playoffs, the success of Oprah's cable channel and whether Long Beach would ever really be America's most bike-friendly city.

HOPE & FREEDOM FILM FESTIVAL IS A GOOD FIT WITH PRIDE WEEKEND


The Hope and Freedom Film Festival returns to the Art Theatre this Saturday (May 21), and in its second year it shares the same weekend as the Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Festival. That’s appropriate—according to its website, the mission of the Hope and Freedom Film Festival is “to help create a society where […]

GREATER LONG BEACH RADIO: HERE’S AN EARFUL OF WHAT YOU’VE MISSED


Did you miss Dave Wielenga's interview with Long Beach Post publisher Shaun Lumachi about the effects a media outlet owned by a city councilman and Chamber of Commerce advocate could have on local journalism? Inside is a link to that show and others on Greater Long Beach Radio.

DOES THE RISE OF THE LB POST MEAN THE FALL OF JOURNALISM IN LONG BEACH?


The Long Beach Post, the fastest-growing information outlet in town, was co-founded and is co-owned by City Councilman Robert Garcia and Chamber of Commerce government affairs consultant Shaun Lumachi. As other news organizations struggle, what does that mean for for the city?

AGAINST LONG ODDS, GARCIA GUARANTEES: ‘ARMORY PARK IS GOING TO HAPPEN’


Four years since the high-flying proposal for Armory Park had its wings clipped by a collapsing economy, a city that's amputating its way through a budget deficit and the veto of the city traffic engineer, the project has its mojo back ... ummm, "mojo" means "money," right?

COUNCIL MEMBER PATRICK O’DONNELL READS ‘ROBERT THE ROSE HORSE’


Only a few hours after 4th District Councilmember Patrick O'Donnell wrapped up another week of teaching history at Paramount High, he was back in front of a room full of children at the Dana Branch Library for the First Books segment of First Fridays in Bixby Knolls.

ARMORY PARK: ALL THESE YEARS LATER, HAS ITS TIME FINALLY ARRIVED?


Four years after it seemed to reach a stalemate, Armory Park is back---although to what extent we won't know until a press conference Monday. While you wait, here's a slightly updated version of a 2007 story that explains just how things were left at the time.

JENSEN’S RECOVERY FROM PLANE CRASH ADVANCES FROM BURN UNIT TO REHAB


Mike Jensen, the lone survivor of a March 16 private plane crash at the Long Beach Airport that killed the five other passengers, has been moved from the intensive care burn unit at the UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange to begin rehabilitation, according to a website being used by his family to provide updates on his […]

DAMN YANKEES: LB RENAISSANCE HIGH PRESENTS ‘ONLY MUSICAL WORTH SEEING’


More than 50 students of Renaissance High School for the Arts will collaborate this weekend on two performances of "Damn Yankees," the 1955 Broadway musical about baseball that a bunch of boys who grew up in Bellflower hailed as "the only musical of any kind worth seeing."

POLITICIANS, PRESS IGNORE WORKERS FIRED AFTER HELPING STATE PROBE HILTON


The Long Beach Hilton is in Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal's district and across the street from the Press-Telegram, but Lowenthal and the P-T were no-shows at Wednesday's press conference for five housekeepers fired after cooperating with a state probe into the hotel's tax and employment practices.

THE BUTLER PLAN: SPIN QUEEN MARY’S MANAGERIAL MERRY-GO-ROUND INTO ONE OF THE SHIP’S “FUN” ATTRACTIONS


As the Queen Mary looks for another manager/operator—that will make four in the past four years—a contributor to an online discussion group devoted to the historic ship believes he has found a way to transform all this instability into an attraction. Chris Butler is the blogger’s name, and he calls his game “a concept that would put some fun […]

LB HERITAGE NAMES SEAPORT MARINA HOTEL TO ITS ENDANGERED LIST


The Seaport Marina Hotel, a midcentury expression of Southern California’s informal elegance that has become an eyesore under its latest owners, is among 10 Long Beach buildings on an Endangered Properties Watch List.

PLANNING COMMISSION DENIES REQUEST TO SUBDIVIDE MARKETPLACE CENTER


The Long Beach Planning Commission denied by a 5-1 vote Thursday evening a request to subdivide a small slice of the MarketPlace shopping center, located on Pacifice Coast Highway between the proposed Second+PCH development and the Los Cerritos Wetlands. Alan Fox cast the dissenting vote against a majority that consisted of Melanie Smith, Charles Durnin, […]

ACTIVISTS WANT MORE AND CLEARER INFORMATION ABOUT SUBDIVISION OF MARKETPLACE SHOPPING CENTER


A request to subdivide a small slice of the Market Place shopping center is item No. 1 in your program—that is, the agenda—for this evening’s Long Beach Planning Commission meeting, but it’s also something like the ump-tillionth time that what appears to be a straightforward piece of land-use business is being blurred by the confusion […]

AS MARIO CORDERO DEPARTS, HIS LEGACY MAY BE THIS SMALL ACT OF HEROISM


Mario Cordero's confirmation by the Senate last week to the Federal Maritime Commission brought back memories of the moment that epitomized his tenure on the Long Beach Harbor Commission---his commitment to personal integrity when he refused to rubber-stamp a back-room deal he didn't believe in.

MARKETPLACE SUBDIVISION WOULD ACCOMODATE UA THEATER OWNER


Suspicion was aroused this morning when a proposal to subdivide the MarketPlace shopping center suddenly popped up on the April 21 agenda of the Long Beach Planning Commission. That’s the go-to reaction to any perceived shift in the landscape of southeastern Long Beach, home to the Los Cerritos Wetlands and a constant procession of suggested […]

SUBDIVISION OF MARKETPLACE POPS UP ON PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA


A proposal that would subdivide a portion of the MarketPlace shopping center will be  considered at the April 21 meeting of the Long Beach Planning Commission. The item was agendized by City of Long Beach staff, which recommends its approval. The proposed subdivision is almost surgical, snipping 1.2 acres from the MarketPlace, which currently covers 18.2 acres. […]

LEGISLATION BY LAKEWOOD HIGH STUDENTS PASSES ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE


Leaders of Lakewood High's so-called Sacramento Seven---from right to left, Terrell Snead, Assemblyman Warren Furutani, Kaitlyn Miller and Brandon Perez---testify in favor of their bill, AB 1174, Wednesday afternoon before the California Assembly's Education Committee.

LAKEWOOD HIGH’S “SACRAMENTO SEVEN” TO TESTIFY IN CAPITOL BUILDING WEDNESDAY FOR THEIR ASSEMBLY BILL


Nearly eight months after 45 students in a Lakewood High School civics began their final year at the school by batting around ideas for a worthwhile senior project, seven of them will spend Wednesday in the state Capitol Building lobbying and testifying in favor of a bill they have proposed. The Sacramento Seven, they are […]

CITIZEN POLICE INVESTIGATOR SAYS HE WAS FIRED…FOR INVESTIGATING POLICE


Tomas Gonzales says he was fired as an investigator with the Citizens Police Complaint Commission for refusing to soften his investigations into citizen claims of misconduct by Long Beach police officers. He has filed a potentially expensive and embarrassing lawsuit against the City of Long Beach.

IF GANGS DON’T GET HAUBERT’S STRONG MESSAGE, MAYBE THE NEWS MEDIA WILL


Although City Prosecutor Doug Haubert asserted Friday that sending a 20-year-old man to jail for six months on a misdemeanor vandalism conviction sends a “strong message” to gang members, he actually made his point by sending a strong message to the news media. A no-words-minced press release that was e-mailed by Haubert’s chief of staff […]

UP-AND-COMING RAPPER PAYS TRIBUTE TO DEARLY DEPARTED NATE DOGG


Clippah Duh Dam Gorilla is combining a Club Cohiba listening party for his debut album with a tribute to the late Nate Dogg, who came out of central Long Beach neighborhoods to become an international star.

POTENTIAL LUNATICS TO PLAY BLUE CAFE AND ALBUM IS ON THE WAY


The sister-and-brother punk duo of Long Beach teenagers Emma and Isaac Simons-Araya---whose music is in no way as kitschy as that description might suggest---have raised the last $400 they needed to finish their first album. Next stop: the Blue Cafe this Sunday

LOS CERRITOS WETLANDS LAND TRUST RAMPS UP OPPOSITION TO SECOND+PCH


After doing a low boil for a few years over the slick website that the 2nd+PCH development team has been using to promote its controversial multi-use proposal, environmentalists opposed to the project now have one of their own. The Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust (LCWLT) has launched the specialized site on a separate page of […]

NATE DOGG’S MEMORIAL: A LONG, EMOTIONAL FAREWELL TO LONG BEACH’S OWN


Nathaniel D. Hale, who became a hip-hop legend named Nate Dogg by birth into a family of Gospel singers and by bonds forged in the neighborhoods of center Long Beach, was memorialized Saturday during a long, emotional ceremony that intertwined those influences.

PHOTO ESSAY: SUNRISE BIKE RIDE BEGINS MEMORIAL FOR MARK BIXBY


A large contingent of cyclists pedaled out of a glorious sunrise at Alamitos Bay Friday morning on a memorial bike ride for the late Mark Bixby, who died March 16 in a private plane crash at the Long Beach Airport.

UPDATED: 1,000 TIX TO NATE DOGG MEMORIAL AVAILABLE TODAY BY PHONE


One thousand tickets to Saturday’s otherwise-private memorial service for Long Beach hip-hop pioneer Nate Dogg in the Queen Mary Dome are available by telephone today on a first-come, first-served basis. To order a ticket, you must call (562) 570-6147 before 3 p.m. today (Friday, March 25). To use it Saturday, you must have a valid […]

SECOND+PCH’S PLAN FOR THE ZONING LAWS IT VIOLATES: REWRITE ‘EM!


Second+PCH developer David Malmuth concedes that, in a perfect world, zoning laws would be rewritten first so as to permit a project that was in accordance with them. "Yeah," he says, "but it’s not gonna happen that way.”

K-BEACH RADIO TO REVIEW, DISCUSS TODAY’S 2ND+PCH MEETING TONIGHT AT 6


GreaterLongBeach.com publisher Dave Wielenga will be among the in-studio guests this evening when Long Beach State’s online radio station, K-BEACH, presents a special feature on today’s 3rd District neighborhood meeting on the proposed Second+PCH project. The program begins at 6 p.m. and is accessible online at www.KBeach.org. It will also be available as a podcast. […]

DELONG’S CONSTITUENTS LUNCH WITH SECOND+PCH DEVELOPER SO COZY THAT SOME OF THEM FEEL CROWDED OUT


It’s no wonder all tickets for Thursday’s meeting of Councilmember Gary DeLong’s 3rd District Neighborhood Association were sold out more than a week ago. The guest speaker is David Malmuth, developer of Second+PCH, the hugely controversial proposal to construct a huge hotel/residential/retail consortium on the corner of Long Beach’s most congested intersection. Also? There were […]

BEER & POLITICS RETURNS ON APRIL FOOL’S DAY IN BIXBY KNOLLS


Keeping a promise he made in a one-question interview with GreaterLongBeach.com last December, Mike Clements is reviving Beer & Politics, the monthly thirst-quenching public-issues forum he’d been hosting in taverns around town—until he became 7th district councilman James Johnson’s chief of staff. Although Clements said then that he expected Beer & Politics to be back […]

WHERE THE STREETS HAVE NEW NAMES …


The streets of Downey are suburban, almost obliged to be indistinctive, and yet driving them has begun to feel more and more … meaningful? Or maybe … inspirational? And then again, there’s always … corny? Well, at minimum, let’s hope it’s unforgettable—because committing all the new street names to memory is a challenge. Lately, the […]

BILL BY LAKEWOOD HIGH CIVICS CLASS REACHES ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE


Lakewood High students who proposed AB 1174---which would prohibit adults from soliciting minor-aged children going to and from public schools---are raising money for an April 13 trip to Sacramento to testify before the Education Committee.

“THE USE OF REGRET:” COULD IT BE A HEART-SHAPED BLOOD STAIN?


Greggory Moore will be at { open } Saturday night to read from his first novel, "The Use of Regret," which he agrees has a very intriguing title---but about which he is otherwise inscrutable. Very cagey, Mr. Moore, very cagey.

NATE DOGG, WHOSE SOULFUL HOOKS SIGNIFIED LB’S G-FUNK SOUND, DIES AT 41


Nate Dogg's unmistakeable voice was deep and soothing, but it was also sonic camouflage for personal torments that were buried even deeper within him. Although he was a warm, honest and insightful conversationalist, Nate Dogg seemed to be constantly distracted and undermined by personal issues, even as he rose to personal fame.

BULLETIN: SECOND+PCH’S PROJECT’S (SECOND) ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT TO BE RELEASED THURSDAY


The long-awaited environmental impact report (EIR) for the Second+PCH development—the second such document for this long-proposed hotel/retail/residential project—will be released Thursday, GreaterLongBeach.com has learned from lead developer David Malmuth. “My enthusiasm has been renewed,” Malmuth says. “I can finally see that we’ll formally start the comment period and hopefully be successful [in getting approval] through […]

LB CITY COUNCIL ACCEPTS $180 MILLION WORTH OF REDEVELOMENT AGENCY PROPERTIES TO SHIELD FROM STATE


The City of Long Beach acquired some 222 parcels of land worth approximately $180 million Tuesday night when the City Council voted 9-0 to accept all properties, assets and development agreements that were transferred to it in a unanimous Monday morning vote by the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Board. The actions by the two […]

ELECTION DAY BRINGS SOME CHANGE, EVEN TO GOOD, OLD BELLFLOWER


“Sonny” Santa Ines was five years old when he made his first political speech---at a campaign rally for his father, who was running for a city government office in The Philippines---made his most-recent one Tuesday night when he was elected to the Bellflower City Council.

BULLETIN: LONG BEACH RDA VOTES TO TRANSFER ITS HOLDINGS TO CITY COUNCIL


By unanimous vote, the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency has ordered that all the properties and assets it owns—as well as all agreements to develop them—be transferred to the City of Long Beach, which will put them under the control of the Long Beach City Council. The vote, held in City Council chambers this morning, comes […]

THAT ART WE THOUGHT MIGHT BE BANKSY’S? IT’S DOWNEY’S OWN BUMBLEBEE!


Bumblebee, born-and-raised in Downey (exit at Firestone, not through the gift shop), has been building such a high profile in the downlow world of street art---not only painting on walls, but sculpting in abandoned phone booths and newsracks---that he has recently brought his stuff into galleries.

THE DAY LONG BEACH BEAT WESTBORO BAPTISTS AT THEIR OWN FREE SPEECH


On the day the Supreme Court upheld the First Amendment rights of the despicable Westboro Baptist Church, it's worth remembering the way the people of Long Beach greeted the wacky Kansas hatemongers last year with more than a little free speech of our own.

WARREN FURUTANI LAYS DOWN THE LAW-MAKING FOR LAKEWOOD STUDENTS


“Who’s got a vote? That’s what counts,” Assembly member Warren Furutani told a group of Lakewood High students during a strategy session for a bill they have introduced in Sacramento. "Other questions are important only to the extent that our answers will help us secure the votes of committee members that will get our bill to the floor.”

WHAT ARE YOUR DEEPEST DESIRES FOR THE NEW LIBRARY IN NORTH LONG BEACH?


What do you like in a neighborhood public library? For me, it’s books, but I know a dude who goes just to get shhhushed by a secondarily degreed professional trained in information and library science. Anybody with other ideas and passions for libraries is welcome to suggest and confess them Saturday in North Long Beach […]

GARAGE THEATRE SETS OSCAR MOOD WITH A COEN BRO (SINGULAR) PLAY


Ethan Coen’s Almost an Evening opens at the Garage Theatre on Friday, which of course is almost the evening—two nights before the Academy Awards—which of course is where Coen and brother, Joel, will be awaiting the outcome of the 10 nominations for their latest picture, True Grit, which of course makes the show the perfect […]

WATCH HOLLYWOOD’S BIGGEST NIGHT AT LONG BEACH’S BIGGEST OSCAR PARTY


The biggest Oscar Party in Greater Long Beach this Sunday? In terms of square footage, it’s hard to enlarge uponthe bash Long Beach Cinematheque is throwing at Yankee Doodles. That ol’ sports bar is positively geographic!

DARYL SHAWN WILL BE INSTRUMENTAL TO A GOOD TIME AT VIENTO Y AGUA


If you like the music of Rodrigo y Gabriela, Tommy Emmanuel and Bill Frisell, you probably ought to be at the Viento y Agua coffee house Thursday at 8 p.m. for an instrumental show by guitarist Daryl Shawn. Shawn is based in New York, an alumnus of Boston’s Berklee College of Music and developed his […]

DOUG HAUBERT: SOMEWHERE BETWEEN WINNING UGLY AND SITTING PRETTY


The job of city prosecutor is so complex that Doug Haubert can’t precisely explain how he---or Long Beach residents—ought to determine whether he’s doing a good one. "In my opinion," says Haubert, "the best way is whether people feel the neighborhoods are getting safer.”

LBUSD BOARD UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES POTENTIAL LAYOFFS, PROGRAM CUTS


A unanimous, 5-0 vote by the Long Beach Unified School District’s Board of Education approved roughly $30 million in budget cuts—with more expected—Tuesday afternoon before an overflow crowd. The action authorized LBUSD management to send notices of potential layoffs to 777 certificate-holding employees, mainly teachers, but also including librarians, counselors, and others. The action would […]

FIFTY YEARS LATER, A BIRTH—AND A LEGACY—AT 14TH & CHESTNUT


The site of Long Beach's first great hospital has become its newest park, and many people born at Seaside Hospital came to the dedication of Seaside Park---some bearing their birth certificates---as witnesses and well-wishers to the repurposing of their sorta-sacred spot.

ALL WRITEY!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS, CRITICISMS, LOVE NOTES & WITTICISMS


YOU DON’T HAVE TO REGISTER YOUR BICYCLE IN LONG BEACH, ANYMORE [ By Dave Wielenga ] Not having this chore will give you more time to register your cat. / THE COMMISH What’s with all the shameless self promotion? Long Beach–bike lanes are good. Quit saying you are (or are becoming) the “most bicycle friendly city […]

YOU DON’T HAVE TO REGISTER YOUR BICYCLE IN LONG BEACH, ANYMORE


Bicycle registration became voluntary in Long Beach on Tuesday night by a unanimous vote of the City Council. “We are now one step closer to becoming America’s most bike-friendly city,” said Council member Robert Garcia in a statement released by his office moments after the meeting ended. Garcia introduced legislation in December that directed the […]

LB REACHES THE BOYLE-ING POINT, AND BY COINCIDENCE, HERE HE COMES


Father Greg Boyle's appearance in Bixby Knolls Wednesday night---scheduled before Saturday’s gang-related shooting---is pure coincidence ... whether you define that word as a) a sequence of accidental events that seems to have been arranged; or b) a miracle in which God chooses to remain anonymous.

SHASHIN DESAI: THOUGHTS ON A LIFE IN—AND NOW OUT OF—THE THEATER


“Whatever that passion is, whatever you call it, wherever you find it---whether there are five people in the cast or five people in the audience---it is OK, it is perfect. Nothing else is an issue. The issue is how sincere people are.” ---SHASHIN DESAI

WHEN WILL BLACKOUT BE LIFTED ON LBPD’S KILLING OF DOUG ZERBY?


Nearly six weeks after Doug Zerby was gunned down in Belmont Shore by two Long Beach police officers as he fiddled with a water nozzle on a friend's porch, nearly all the facts related to the case have become the secrets of investigating public officials and law enforcement agencies. When will the blackout be lifted?

CITY AUDITOR RUNS THE NUMBERS THAT QUALIFY HER FOR BOSTON MARATHON


City Auditor Laura Doud qualified for the Boston Marathon today, lopping 32 minutes off her personal best to finish the Phoenix Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon—that’s 26 miles, 385 yards—in 3 hours and 50 minutes. “It was just one of those days where everything lined up perfectly,” marveled Doud, 44, during a telephone interview from Phoenix […]

INTERNATIONAL CITY THEATER FOUNDER SHASHIN DESAI WILL RESIGN MARCH 15


Shashin Desai, who in 1985 founded the International City Theater in a 99-seat, black box theater on the campus of Long Beach City College, announced his resignation—effective March 15—in a press release Friday afternoon. He will be replaced by his wife and the ICT’s current general manager, caryn desai, who spells her name that way. […]

IN AFTERMATH OF ENVIRONMENTAL VICTORY COMES … BOREDOM?


The most-striking revelation to emerge from Thursday night’s meeting among environmental crusaders who last month finally saw the acquisition of 100 acres of the Los Cerritos Wetlands? Fighting for preservation of a delicate ecosystem is a lot more exciting than planning its restoration. For more than 20 years, activists had brought soulful passion, indefatigable dedication […]

BRING QUESTIONS ABOUT WETLANDS ACQUISITION TO SEAL BEACH TONIGHT


Now that an environmental battle of more than 20 years has finally concluded with 100 acres of Los Cerritos Wetlands—located on the Hellman Ranch property—in the public hands … uhhh … what’s next? Bring that question to Seal Beach tonight and ask it during the Neighborhood Meeting at the Senior Center at the Mary Wilson […]

ONE QUESTION … FOR STACIA SAMARTAN: ARE WE NEARING THE END OF THE CUPCAKE TREND?


The back story: Everywhere you look, somebody is predicting the demise of the cupcake—or at least our decade-long obsession with them. As 2010 wound down, it was one of the most-common New Year’s prophecies. Of course, that was true near the end of  2008 and 2009, too. Since Stacia Samartan and her mother opened Frosted Cupcakery in […]

THERE’S STILL TIME TO RESOLVE TO JOIN BIXBY KNOLLS LITERARY SOCIETY


Lots of New Year’s resolutions have already been trashed, but there are ways to recover—basically by resolving to do something for which, so far in 2011, there has been no opportunity to do … like, let’s saaaay … attending all 12 meetings of the Bixby Knolls Literary Society. The first one of those isn’t until […]

ONE QUESTION … FOR ROBERT GARCIA: DID YOU KEEP SERVICE-YARD PROMISE?


When he was running for re-election, Robert Garcia said he would support “restrictions” on the private use of the Public Service Yard property for trucking. But no restrictions were included in the deed or covenant. Did Garcia keep his promise? "Absolutely!" he says.

OROPEZA’S STAFF TENDING TO HER CONSTITUENTS—AND LOOKING FOR WORK


Monday would have been the day Jenny Oropeza began her second term in the California Senate. Instead, for her staff, it was simply the first day back from the holiday break, a return to tending to the needs of constituents and a resumption of the countdown to their last day on the job.

BEYOND GREATER: MUST-READ STORY WE DIDN’T WRITE–DEATH OF ‘DISNEY DREAM’


Economic equality seemed within reach in 1956, at least for the vast middle class. The sense that the American promise of social and economic mobility was attainable to anyone who sought it permeates Robbins Barstow's home movie, “Disneyland Dream,” from start to finish.

NEW DOWNEY COUNCILMAN USES VETERAN’S EXCUSE FOR NOT REPORTING CONTRIBUTION


Fernando Vasquez, the newest member of the Downey city council, is falling back upon a well-worn excuse for his failure to report a $2,500 campaign contribution from a local auto dealership before the Nov. 2 election—blaming a subordinate. “It was oversight by the campaign treasurer , who handles our reporting of expenses and campaign contributions,” said Vasquez, […]

LBPOA BLOCKS RELEASE OF LIST OF OFFICERS WHO FATALLY SHOT SUSPECTS


The December deaths of two suspects who were shot by Long Beach Police Department officers has apparently prompted an investigation by the Los Angeles Times, which is seeking the names of all LBPD officers involved in fatal shootings since 2005. But the Times reports that the Long Beach Police Officers Association (the union that represents […]

GREATEST OF THE GREATER: MOST-READ STORIES FROM OUR FIRST 6 MONTHS


It's been barely six months since Greater Long Beach was launched---June 24, 2010---but in that small time we've taken some big strides toward preserving and continuing the kind of independent and insightful journalism that Long Beach and surrounding communities not only need, but deserve. Here are the 10 stories that were most-popular with readers.

DON’T WORRY, IF FARRELL’S DOES RETURN TO DOWNEY YOU’LL HEAR IT


Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlours became a crazy-popular chain in the 1960s by dressing its employees like they were in the 1890s and making them act like they were on LSD. There used to be a Farrell's at Downey's Stonewood Center, and rumor has it there may be again.

SECOND+PCH SAYS HAPPY HOLIDAYS… OH, AND EIR WILL BE TWO MONTHS LATE


'Twas the night before Christmas, and the already paralyzed Second+PCH project took the opportunity to inform supporters that the pivotal rewrite of the Environmental Impact Report will miss its end-of-the-year deadline by two months. The bad news came in an e-mail titled "Happy Holidays."

ONE QUESTION … FOR RESTAURATEUR KAMRAN ASSADI: ARE THESE HOLIDAYS MAKING MERCHANTS HAPPY?


The question: From where you stand—on the downtown corner of First Street and Linden Avenue, where you and Amir Zee have co-owned Utopia Restaurant for 11 years—do these look like Happy Holidays for East Village businesses? Kamran Assadi’s answer: Compared to last year, it’s much, much better. It’s been a very good holiday season for […]

SIGNS OF LIFE—THAT IS, A BREAKING NEWS STORY—AT LBREPORT.COM


A pulse has been detected on the website of LBReport.com, which on Sunday began to emerge from a brief coma—publisher Bill Pearl called it a “hiatus”—in encouragingly characteristic fashion: that is, it broke a story. Acting on an independent tip, LBReporter Sharon Katchen was first with news of the Long Beach Police Department’s second fatal […]

LBREPORT.COM IS SUDDENLY GONE, BUT PUBLISHER INSISTS NOT FOR LONG


Bill Pearl, who essentially founded Internet news reporting in Long Beach when he launched LBReport.com in 2000, insists he is not through—that the website’s sudden disappearance Friday will only last a few more days. “I’m not going away,” Pearl said Saturday in a telephone conversation from his home. “This is going to be a very […]

ONE QUESTION … FOR MICHAEL CLEMENTS: WHAT HAPPENED TO BEER & POLITICS?


[ Another in a weekly series. ] The question: What happened to Beer & Politics, the thirst-quenching public-issues forum that you’d been moderating in taverns around town for the past few years on the last Tuesday of every month? Mike Clements’ answer: Beer and Politics was a casualty of real life. By end of 2009, […]

GIFT OF THE MAD GUYS: THE BUMPERS ADD A CAROL TO THE HOLIDAY CATALOGUE


From somewhere in the mixture of The Bumpers’ made and missed holiday opportunities has come forth the Newest Christmas Song on Earth … or Long Beach, anyway: "I Need My Baby By My Side (On Xmas Night)."

DO YOU MIND THIS GUY WAITING FOR KIDS OUTSIDE THEIR SCHOOL?


Some Lakewood High students want a law against adults---like this man, covering his face with the religious booklets he was foisting on children outside Rogers Middle School last month---soliciting minors within 100 feet of public schools. Assemblyman Warren Furutani has agreed to take their proposal through the legislative process.

DOG GONE, BUT WHAT A WEEKEND FOR DEE AND HER BLUETICK COONHOUND!


“This is the biggest moment in my dog-showing career,” Dee Gunter reflected quietly after her Bluetick Coonhound won Best of Breed at the AKC National Championships. “Fifty years I’ve been waiting for this. I started when I was 10½ and I’m almost 62 years old. Yes, I am.”

ONE QUESTION (ABOUT PUNCTUATION) … FOR RYAN ZUMMALLEN


[ Another in a series. ] The question: What’s the deal with the spelling of your last name—ZumMallen—that is, a double-M with the second one capitalized? Ryan ZumMallen’s answer: “That’s just the way the name has always been. I don’t know much about its history—my dad tried to trace it for awhile, but he hit a dead end. […]

LBREPORT.COM SEEKING NOMINATIONS FOR THE BEST AND WORST OF 2010


Who should be Long Beach’s Civic Superlatives and Posterior Posterities of 2010? And why? LBReport.com wants to know—especially the why—for a feature will attempt to wrap a year that is fast slipping away. Personally, one of GreaterLongBeach.com’s nominees for a Civic Superlative would be LBReport.com, itself.  Long Beach’s oldest on-line news source turned 10 years […]

CIRIVELLO’S: SPORTS SPOT BY DAY, MUSIC VENUE BY NIGHT


A guy in a ball cap and a stretched-to-the-max jersey with his belly up to the bar was staring at a hi-def TV and making small talk with his virtual clone between bites and sips of the lunch special: business as usual for a Thursday afternoon at Cirivello’s. But Friday will be another day—or, more […]

JACKSON BROWNE TO PLAY TERRACE THEATER


Tickets go on sale Saturday at noon for a concert by renowned singer-songwriter Jackson Browne, who will perform a solo acoustic show on March 8 at the Terrace Theater. Browne was raised in Orange County and his music epitomized the 1970s California sound, which soothed the wounds of the 1960s with laid-back melodies and lyrics […]

ONE QUESTION … FOR DIANE RIPLEY


Why haven't you registered as a lobbyist with the City of Long Beach, which last February instituted a Lobbyist Registration Ordinance by a unanimous vote of the City Council?

GARCIA, LOWENTHAL & DELONG PROPOSE BANNING PLASTIC BAGS IN LONG BEACH


After jetting to Sacramento for a press event supporting state legislation that would ban single-use plastic bags in California, Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal has joined with Long Beach City Council members Robert Garcia and Gary DeLong in proposing such a ban—along with a charge for recyclable paper bags—in Long Beach. The council members have placed their proposal, […]

‘ROSENCRANTZ & GUILDENSTERN’ RUN EXTENDED TO REPLACE CANCELED SHOWS


Alive Theatre has added three shows to its run of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead, which had two weekends worth of performances postponed for “unavoidable” reasons the company still has not revealed. Remaining dates are tonight (Friday) and Saturday at 8 p.m., Dec. 3 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 4 at 2 p.m. and 8 […]

SATURDAY’S CLEANUP AT BIXBY PARK MAY BE THE BEGINNING OF RESTORATION


The latest call for a community cleanup of a Long Beach public space—this one set for Saturday, from 8 a.m. to noon, at Bixby Park—is not just another call for a community cleanup of Long Beach public space. Claudia Schou, a resident who formed Friends of Bixby Park, which is co-sponsoring the event with the […]

LONG BEACH THEATRES HAVE QUITE A FEW QUESTIONS FOR THEIR AUDIENCES


“We know that theatre audience numbers are shrinking and, naturally, theatres are concerned about that,” said Victoria Bryan, a Long Beach State professor who is overseeing the survey of Long Beach theatre audiences. “Talking to people who do attend shows seems like a good place to start to understand how we can build and sustain future audiences.”

{OPEN} HAS BEEN OPEN FOR SEVEN YEARS—AND IT’S SALE-A-BRATING


{open}, the little bookstore whose brackets have become pillars of culture and commerce on Fourth Street’s Retro Row, will turn seven years old on Nov. 15 and owners Sé Reed and Shea Gauer are celebrating today and Sunday with music, treats, sales and a chance to win $77 worth of books by purchasing $7 worth. […]

ALIVE THEATRE CANCELS THIS WEEKEND’S PERFORMANCES OF ‘ROSENCRANTZ & GUILDENSTERN ARE DEAD’


The Alive Theatre has cancelled all three of this weekend’s performances of Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead due to what a spokesperson for the company called “regrettable and uncontrollable circumstances.” The cancelled shows were scheduled for tonight (Friday Nov. 12) Saturday and Sunday. Also cancelled are performances scheduled for November 26 and 27. […]

CERRITOS HONORED AS LA COUNTY’S MOST BUSINESS-FRIENDLY CITY


Cerritos was honored as Most Business-Friendly City in Los Angeles County for cities with populations under 60,000 people Wednesday night during a ceremony at the  Beverly Hilton Hotel, receiving an Eddy Award from the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC). Alhambra won the Eddy among cities with populations over 60,000, a category in which […]

CERRITOS, DOWNEY & CARSON ARE FINALISTS FOR LA COUNTY’S MOST-BUSINESS-FRIENDLY CITY AWARDS


Three cities in the Greater Long Beach area—although not Long Beach, itself, this year—are among 12 finalists for Eddy Awards in the 2010 Most Business-Friendly City competition sponsored by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC). Representatives of Cerritos, Downey and Carson will be at the Beverly Hilton Hotel tonight to await the announcement […]

MAYOR’S WIFE USES HER FACEBOOK PAGE TO PUSH LB CITY COUNCIL FOR TOUGHER MEDICAL MARIJUANA ORDINANCE


The Long Beach City Charter doesn’t give her an official voice and she isn’t registered with City Hall as a lobbyist, but Nancy Foster is the wife of Mayor Bob Foster—and on Monday night she leveraged whatever influence comes with that connection to support additional restrictions to Long Beach’s medical marijuana ordinance. Three city council […]

C’MON IN, THE WATER’S … UHH … WELL THE HEALTH DEPT SAYS IT’S FINE AGAIN


Beach weather continued its unseasonal stay in Long Beach today, and you know the old saying: Last one in the water is a rotten egg! But what about the first one in the water? What is he—or she—only three days after local beaches were closed by the arrival of 50,000 gallons of raw sewage, which […]

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APPLICATIONS FOR NEW ROUND OF LAWN-TO-GARDEN REBATES ARE UNDERWAY


On-line applications began this morning at 8 a.m. for a new round of rebates—up to $2,500 per household—offered by the Long Beach Water Department to residents who replace their water-guzzling grass lawns with easy-on-the-H20 landscapes. To apply, go to http://www.lblawntogarden.com/ Admission to the Lawn to Garden Program will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, […]

TEA PARTY STOMP? NOT HERE, WHERE DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENTS WALTZED


The Tea Party Stomp, a political dance craze that swept the nation---and lots of Democratic incumbents out of office---during Tuesday’s elections doesn’t appear to have caught on in Greater Long Beach, where voters came away from polling places doing the Same Ol’ Shuffle.

IT STINKS, AND SOMEHOW I BEAR SOME SCENTS OF RESPONSIBILITY


The latest sewage spill will close Long Beach's open coastal beaches for a few days while scientists monitor the water's bacterial levels. The good thing is, somebody warned the sea lions, birds and fish. And?When the percentages of poison drop to acceptable levels, everybody’s going to be invited back into the water!

LONG BEACH ST. MEN’S BASKETBALL TEAM PICKED SECOND IN PRE-SEASON POLL


Last year, the Long Beach State men’s basketball team came within one victory of a trip to the NCAA playoffs—a loss to UC Santa Barbara in the finals of the Big West Conference Tournament—and a 23-member panel of sports reporters expects more or less the same outcome this season. In a pre-season poll released Thursday, […]

JONATHAN JAQUES CHILDREN’S CANCER CENTER RECEIVES $50,000 GRANT


The Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Long Beach’s Miller Children’s Hospital has received a $50,000 grant from the St. Baldrick’s Foundation to help child survivors of cancer cope with the various enduring effects of their treatment. “Unfortunately, what it takes to get children cancer-free can leave them with longstanding problems,” said Jayme Palumbo of […]

OROPEZA’S FUNERAL IS THIS AFTERNOON, AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC


Funeral services for state Senator Jenny Oropeza, whose death at age 53 Wednesday night left a stunned stillness in the political circles she had enlivened with her energy for more than three decades, will be held today at 1 p.m. The ceremony will be conducted at Forest Lawn in Cypress (4471 Lincoln Ave.) in the […]

AUCTION OF MARATHON’S MILE MARKERS TO BE EXTENDED AND EXPANDED


Absolutely unsurprisingly, mile marker 26 received the most bids from Long Beach Marathon participants last weekend during a silent auction to benefit the Artful Healing program at Miller Children’s Hospital. Twenty-six miles is pretty much what marathoning is all about—although those with experience never underestimate the additional 385 yards to the finish line. A whole […]

UPDATE OCT. 19: AUCTION OF MARATHON MILE MARKERS TO BE EXTENDED AND EXPANDED


These mile markers are special. They were created and painted by young patients from Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach (MCHLB) as part of the hospital’s “Artful Healing for Our Heroes” campaign. Exactly 100 percent of the proceeds of the silent auction will benefit this program, directed by MCHLB artist in residence, Denise Clayton-Leonard.

COULD TERRY WATT PROVIDE A PATH TO WIN-WIN SOLUTION OF LOS CERRITOS WETLANDS DILEMMA?


The few open spaces that remain in Long Beach continue to dangle in the political breeze like piñatas, their fate frequently seeming to depend on nothing more than the blind swing of a lucky land developer. During the past few years, the biggest of these places—the 56-acre, so-called Sports Park site on former oil and […]

YEASTIE BOYS CONTINUE ILLOGICAL MYSTERY TOUR TONIGHT AT ALEX’S


It’s difficult to explain the attraction of the Yeastie Boys, a bunch of over-the-hill punk rockers who get on stage costumed as circus clowns … hmmm … unless the band is actually a circus whose clowns affect the music of punk so they can get on stage! Aha! But wait—the attraction of that would be […]

GOING TO THE DOG PARK? HOPE YOU AND POOCHIE HAVE READ THE FINE PRINT


Workers at Rio San Gabriel Park in Downey are putting the finishing touches on a new dog park—and hey, where do you think you and that mutt of yours are going? There’s a lot more to taking your dog to a dog park—this one, anyway—than simply taking your dog to a dog park. For instance: […]

GET BUSY ON STEINBECK’S ‘IN DUBIOUS BATTLE’ FOR BIXBY KNOLLS LITERARY SOCIETY OCT. 13


Less than two weeks remain to finish reading In Dubious Battle before the next meeting of the Bixby Knolls Literary Society on Oct. 13. That doesn’t sound like much time, until you consider the John Steinbeck classic was published in 1936. Then it sounds like a major case of procrastination. In Dubious Battle came out […]

DOES BIG SHUFFLE OF SECOND+PCH TEAM SIGNAL A BIG CHANGE IN TACTICS?


Cliff Ratkovich and Carl Kemp are out, Stephen T. Conley and Alex Cherin are in, and there is speculation that the shuffle signals a change in strategy by Second+PCH lead lead developer David Malmuth---an attempt to pull political strings rather than push for community support.

ALL WRONGY!! P-T COMMENTERS REVEAL THEIR OWN SAD SCALE


THE HEADLINE: Downey twins win by losing a combined 273 pounds THE STORY: After losing a combined 273 pounds in 20 months, identical 29-year-old twin sisters Tiffany Marie Elizalde (153-pound loss) and Tina Marie Konegni (120-pound loss) of Downey were named among 100 first-place winners nationwide in Weight Watchers 2010 “Role Models of the Year” […]

GREEN IS GREATER FESTIVAL TODAY AT GASLAMP, NOON TO 6…AND FREE!


The Green Is Greater Festival convenes today at noon—eight musical acts, dozens of environmental groups, artists and vendors—in a first-of-its kind opportunity for the often-fragmented environmental movement to unite during six hours of celebration and fundraising at The Gaslamp Restaurant. The event is free. Korey Dane heads an exciting musical lineup that also features The […]

COME FOR THE QUICHE, STAY FOR THE CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES


Dan Pressburg’s candidate brunches have become a unique and reassuring tradition in Long Beach politics, an opportunity to meet candidates for elective office over quiche, bacon, sausage and orange juice on the patio of a historic home that used to be a local dairy and creamery. Pressburg, an unflagging activist in North Long Beach, basically […]

GREEN IS GREATER LINEUP FINALIZED: EIGHT BANDS IN SIX HOURS


The best in Long Beach music will be showcased Saturday at the Green is Greater Festival, when eight acts will appear on the Gaslamp Restaurant stage during six hours of non-stop tuneage—all to benefit environmental organizations from throughout the area. The final lineup: KOREY DANE & CO. This amazing songsmith and his excellent entourage comes […]

WHEN BELLFLOWER COULDN’T AFFORD ANNUAL CAR SHOW, ANYMORE, THE NOON LIONS STEPPED IN AS SPONSOR


It’s still possible to enter a vehicle in the Bellflower Boulevard Car Show, on the very day of the 12th annual version of the event is held … well … on Bellflower Boulevard. That didn’t look very likely a couple of years ago, when a budget crisis forced the City of Bellflower to cut back […]

THE COMPTON BULLETIN LAUNCHES ITS FIRST-EVER SUBSCRIPTION DRIVE


The Compton Bulletin has become one of Southern California’s most dynamic community newspapers under the leadership of editor Allison Jean Eaton, but it isn’t immune to economic conditions that are threatening print journalism everywhere. So for the first time in its history The Bulletin is launching a subscription drive. Throughout the months of September and […]

HERE’S THE LINK TO ACRES OF BOOKS SEGMENT ON KPCC’S OFF-RAMP


Greater Long Beach contributor Theo Douglas will be among the guests Saturday when the public radio program Off Ramp examines the death of Long Beach’s iconic Acres of Books—from how it happened to whether it had to happen to why the hell it took so excruciatingly damn long … I mean, is the place actually […]

BUSKERFEST WINNER KOREY DANE TO HEADLINE GREEN IS GREATER FESTIVAL


Fresh off his win in the Summer And Music Buskerfest last weekend, singer/songwriter Korey Dane is among three more highly regarded local artists who have joined the musical lineup for the day-long Green Is Greater Festival on Sept. 18 at the Gaslamp Bar and Restaurant. Admission is free. Dane’s musical stylings can tiptoe from folk […]

ANTHONY CLARK HATED STREET-SWEEPING TICKETS SO MUCH HE WENT PRO


The Press-Telegram’s so-called special report Sunday on street sweeping in Long Beach—which contrasted the miles of roadways the machines clean against the millions in revenue the parking tickets glean, just like the many not-special reports that have preceded it over the years—made me marvel again at the enduring attraction of this topic. I wrote pretty much […]

YEASTIE BOYS BRING THEIR PUNK A-LA-CLOWN ACT


"It's a real fun time,” says … well … one of the Yeastie Boys---impossible to say which one, behind all that makeup. “We do all the classic punk rock tunes, stuff by the Ramones, the Clash, the Sex Pistols, all while dressed in clown suits.” Yep, that's what they do. Tonight at 8 at di Piazza's.

A VISION FOR LONG BEACH THAT DOESN’T INVOLVE HALLUCINATIONS?


“I want Long Beach to become the green-technology capital of California,” says Alex Cherin of The Cherin Group. “It's perfectly positioned to attract the kind of venture capital to clean technology that Silicon Valley attracted to computer startups in the 1990s.”

CITY COUNCIL TO REFUND $50K FOR 2ND+PCH PROJECT’S ‘BABY HUEY’


Item 6 on the consent calendar at Tuesday evening’s meeting of the Long Beach City Council authorizes a refund of $50,592 to Pacific Castle Long Beach LLP, which is apparently withdrawing its plan for a massive redevelopment of the MarketPlace Shopping Center—a project we dubbed Baby Huey last April, when we discovered it buried in […]

ALL WRITEY!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS / CRITICISMS / LOVE NOTES, WITTICISMS


VECTOR CONTROL: WOULD PRISON COOL LORRAINE CERVANTES’ BURNING DESIRES? [By Steve Lowery, Aug. 19] I worked as a copyreader and wrote for the Compton Bulletin during the summer of 1987, under the late great publisher, O. Ray Watkins. The paper, along with staff writers John Cordero and Ron (I forgot his last name), crusaded for […]

GREEN IS GREATER FEST: ENVIROS UNITE OVER MUSIC, ART AND A 50/50 DRAWING


Greater Long Beach is partnering with The Gaslamp restaurant and Heather Altman of the environmental blog EgretsNotRegrets.com to present the Green Is Greater Festival---an event intended to help unite the often-fragmented environmental community. It's Sept. 18 at The Gaslamp.

MOVIE SING-ALONGS AND POETRY BOXES: CAN YOU IMAGINE ANYTHING VERSE?


Participatory art can be wonderful---although I enjoy it most when the participants are really good artists. Dicier are situations like those this weekend in Bixby Knolls and on Fourth Street’s Retro Row, where everyol’body is being invited to compose poems and/or sing classic operettas by Rogers & Hammerstein.

COLORADO LAGOON: SWEET SYNCHRONICITY MAY SAVE AN ABUSED OLD SWAMP


In a sweet piece of synchronicity, the Colorado Lagoon restoration plan that is overwhelmingly preferred by the public is also the most environmentally friendly, the most likely to be funded and the least costly to the City of Long Beach.

ALL WRONGY!! THE LATEST POOR-MOUTHING BY PRESS-TELEGRAM COMMENTERS


THE HEADLINE: Californians’ income sees first decline since WWII THE STORY: The personal income of California residents declined last year for the first time since World War II, state officials said—down about 2.5 percent. PRESS-TELEGRAM COMMENTERS RESPOND: Liberal, Progressive, baby boomers, 60’s white and black scum achieving there evil design for California, The U.S. and […]

ALL WRONGY!! TODAY’S SAMPLING OF FLIGHTY P-T COMMENTERS


THE HEADLINE: Angry JetBlue flight attendant left work in most unusual way THE STORY: After being cursed by a passenger, JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater cursed back over the intercom, grabbed some beer from the plane’s galley and left the plane via the emergency slide at Kennedy Airport. P-T COMMENTERS RESPOND:  Estrogenized males are bad […]

MEETING TONIGHT TO CONSIDER RESCUE PLANS FOR COLORADO LAGOON


The Colorado Lagoon was a popular swimming hole until the late 1960s, when water quality began to diminish. It was reconfigured during plans for a cross-town freeway. Now 11 storm drains empty into it, one for every acre of its water.

MAYBE GUERRA CAN SPEND THAT $14K ON A SUPER-BITCHEN VICTORY PARTY


The $14,200 that Downey City Councilmember Mario Guerra has collected for his District 2 City Council re-election campaign will be more than enough to assure victory. Guerra learned Friday—the last day for candidates to file for the November election—that he will be running unopposed. In District 4, the seat currently occupied by termed-out mayor Anne […]

562CITYLIFE.COM HAS ITS NAME TO ITSELF AGAIN


Publisher Jeremy Zachary will still begin printing a monthly arts-and-entertainment magazine in Long Beach this fall, but it won’t be called Long Beach CityLife. Just after 6 o’clock Tuesday evening, Zachary e-mailed Matt Saunders of the local social networking website 562CityLife to say he would be calling it … well … that part he didn’t say. […]

562CITYLIFE.COM SAYS NEW MAGAZINE IS RIPPING OFF ITS NAME, AND LOTS MORE


Amid the still-settling fallout from The District Weekly’s demise in March, an updated, downscaled version of an oldtimey newspaper war may be breaking out in Long Beach—between a newsy/artsy social networking website and a monthly culture-and-entertainment magazine that hasn’t even published its first issue yet. The owners of 562CityLife.com, a three-year-old hub of information and […]

AT BIXBY PARK, A CAUTIOUS CELEBRATION OF A TENUOUS VICTORY


"As good as it feels today---and I hope all of us celebrate---this fight is going to go on a little longer," said Councilmember Robert Garcia. "Our excitement over this victory has to continue. But don’t ever forget how you felt when people stripped away our rights.”

PROP. 8 OVERTURNED BY JUDGE; RALLY FOR MARRIAGE RIGHTS AT BIXBY PARK TODAY AT 6 P.M.


 United States District Court Judge Vaughn Walker has ruled Proposition 8 unconstitutional, and supporters of marriage equality and social justice will rally at 6 o’clock this evening at Bixby Park—intersection of Broadway and Cherry Ave in Long Beach. Prop 8 (or the California Marriage Protection Act) was a ballot proposition and California constitutional amendment passed by voters in […]

PROPOSAL FOR MASSIVE FARMERS MARKET ON ‘PUMPKIN PATCH’ SITE WITHDRAWN BY THACKER


Local strawberry-stand magnate Ted Thacker—the guy behind the increasingly iconic Thackerberry Farms booths on street corners around town—has withdrawn his application to hold a massive farmers market on the so-called “Pumpkin Patch” property just south of the MarketPlace shopping center at 6701 E. Pacific Coast Highway. “He is going to pursue different plans in other […]

LOWENTHAL ANSWERS LOWERY: SHE’LL TELECOMMUTE TO COUNCIL MEETINGS FROM FAMILY WEDDINGS IN INDIA


Suja Lowenthal plans to participate in several upcoming Long Beach City Council meetings via teleconference from India, according to an e-mail her chief of staff, Broc Coward, sent this evening to Greater Long Beach columnist Steve Lowery and cc’d to LBreport.com. Lowery referenced an LBreport.com story in criticizing  Lowenthal in Friday’s edition of his weekly […]

BEVERLY O’NEILL TO SIGN AND DISCUSS HER BIOGRAPHY SATURDAY AT BORDERS


Former three-time Mayor Beverly O’Neill, who was either the most-belovedly successful politician in Long Beach history or the slickest manipulator of her own image, will be at Borders Books in Los Altos on Saturday to sign and discuss her just-published biography. The book was written by Harry Saltzgaver, executive editor of Gazette Newspapers and a Parks & Recreation commissioner who was […]

GARCIA’S GOT HIS REASONS: FIRST NATURE CALLED, THEN HIS FAMILY


Robert Garcia (center, between brother and mother) was on the phone with a family member during the Long Beach City Council's vote for vice-mayor---the second time in three months he's been out of the council chamber during a controversial vote. He insists it's coincidence, not calculation.

BILL PEARL CALLS THE BAHAMAS—THEY HADN’T HEARD ABOUT LB COUNCIL MEETING


Councilman Gary DeLong has opted not to interrupt his excellent Bahamian vacation to vote for Long Beach’s next vice mayor July 20, bending to the advice of the Long Beach City Attorney—but also to the excellent journalism of Bill Pearl at LBReport.com. Pearl phoned the Abaco Club—a timeshare at the Ritz Carlton in The Bahamas—to […]

VOLUNTEERS SOUGHT FOR LB’S HUMAN DIGNITY ASSISTANCE TEAM


The City of Long Beach Human Dignity Program is now recruiting volunteers for the 2010-2011 Assistance Team.  The program teaches volunteers how to assist victims of hate crime and bias incidents in the City of Long Beach. The effort is part of the City’s Human Dignity Program, founded in 1999 to ensure that all residents […]

CHRIS KENDZIERSKI’S DIY STUDIO CHARMER: WOODWORKS FOR ME!


Apartment Therapy just featured Chris Kendzierski's Long Beach studio---all of 450 square feet of it---which he has transformed into an apparently airy and definitely enviable home with a lot of inspiration from architect/furniture-maker George Nakashima and his own talents as a woodworker. Me? I'm proud if I can keep the dishes washed.

IT’S LB FIGHT NIGHT, AKA THE FUNKY WESTERN CIVILIZATION


Another Long Beach Fight Night comes to the Long Beach City College Hall of Champions Gym on Sunday evening beginning at 4:30 p.m., and that always puts my head to humming songs from Tonio K.’s 1978 album, Life In The Foodchain---specifically, “The Funky Western Civilization.”

THE GALWAY HOOKER BAND


The Galway Hooker Band is named after a traditional Irish fishing boat---of course … and shame on you for assuming otherwise. Also? Thank you very much, says bassist Paul Wilson. “That’s what makes the name perfect.”

IT GETS YOU THINKING ABOUT THE TEN COMMANDMENTS—AND THE BILL OF RIGHTS


Hopscotching along the line separating church and state, the Bellflower City Council on Saturday presented a private group with free use of a prime plot of public land---for an art installation created in honor of 16th-century Christian leader John Calvin to promote the Ten Commandments.

MASSIVE FARMERS MARKET PROPOSAL CREATING QUITE A PICKLE


A proposal for a massive farmers’ market on the so-called Pumpkin Patch property appears headed for a second and indefinite postponement...and considering the people involved, perhaps more than a little intrigue.

CITY HALL HEARING THIS AFTERNOON TO CONSIDER HUGE FARMER’S MARKET AT PUMPKIN PATCH


Dave and Ted Thacker, the Cottage Grove, Oregon, guys behind the Thackerberry Farms strawberry stands that bring a touch of country comfort to street corners all over Long Beach, are the guys behind an application to hold a large Farmer’s Market every Saturday and Sunday on the so-called “Pumpkin Patch” property just south of the MarketPlace […]

AT SALVATION ARMY, IT’S ON ‘N’ ON, BEAT DON’T STOP TILLA BREAKA DAWN


It’s not that the Salvation Army doesn’t have a long musical history, but the brass bands and tambourines it's famous for are nowhere to be seen at the Salvation Army Compton Corps Community Center, where a brand-new, state-of-the-art recording studio just opened.

BEER & POLITICS DEBATES SECOND+PCH PROJECT TUESDAY


The latest pivot point in the development of Long Beach—the proposed replacement of the tired, old SeaPort Marina Hotel with the high-rise Second+PCH hotel, residential and retail complex—will be the next topic of debate at Beer & Politics. Developers Cliff Ratkovich and David Malmuth, who are requesting a slew of exceptions to zoning law and traffic […]

RETURN WITH THE BLASTERS TO THE MIDDLE OF THE EARTH—RECORD STORE, THAT IS


Subject: “I don’t like music I haven’t heard before” Yeah, someone really said that. We wish we had her name so we could attribute it. But instead, we held her up to ridicule by writing the quote on the infamous felt letterboard that greeted each soul who entered the hallowed grounds of Middle Earth Records […]

‘RIDING BIKES WITH THE DUTCH’ TONIGHT AT THE ART THEATRE: IS IT BETTER THAN KOBE-HATING?


The timing of Michael Bauch’s documentary film, “Riding Bikes With The Dutch,” couldn’t have been better—unless you count the fact that tonight’s 7 o’clock encore screening at the Art Theatre coincides with Game 4 of NBA finals between the Lakers and Boston Celtics. I do. But a promise is a promise, and I invited my […]

COMPTON RESIDENTS CONSIDERING BOYCOTT, LAWSUIT TO STOP POLICE DEPT COMEBACK


BY ALLISON JEAN EATON / COMPTON BULLETIN Aftershocks continue to ripple through Compton’s 10.5 square miles following the city council’s 3-2 vote last week to re-establish a local police department a plan that no longer has the backing of the consultant on whose study the plan is based. A majority of the community appears staunchly opposed […]

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ONE WOMAN’S RESPONSE TO THE SECOND+PCH ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT—COMMENTS DUE MONDAY


EDITOR’S NOTE: The period for public comment on the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for the proposed multi-use (residential, retail, hotel) Second+PCH project closes today. Longtime resident and environmental activist Lisa Rinaldi has already submitted her comment, and has offered a copy to Redistricted! The DEIR can be read here and comments e-mailed to Long […]

TONIA REYES URANGA’S ‘ONCE-IN-A-CHANCE LIFETIME’ AND THE BALANCE OF POWER IN LONG BEACH


These are the waning days of Tonia Reyes Uranga’s run for her political life—and perhaps the darkness before the dawn of a new balance of power in Long Beach. Too heavy? Maybe not. Defeat in Reyes Uranga’s June 8 showdown with well-connected newcomer James Johnson for the 7th district seat on the Long Beach City […]

WHY IS ONE LITTLE SHOP OWNER BEING MOURNED SO DEEPLY? ONE WOMAN EXPLAINS WHAT SHE LOST WHEN PETE TOULIOS DIED


[Pete Toulios, owner of Lil' Devils boutique on 4th Street, passed away May 17 of still-undetermined causes. A reader of Redistricted! shares the light she lost when Pete passed away. For more remembrances, click here.] BY ELIZABETH BRIGNONI I met Pete Toulios at UC-Riverside, where we worked on a project for the “Healthy Families” study. […]

O’DONNELL CHARACTERIZES LAND-SWAP DEAL FOR LOS CERRITOS WETLANDS AS A QUESTION OF LOVE-’EM-OR-LEAVE-’EM


Still got questions for Long Beach government officials about the city-land-for-wetlands swap they’ve crafted with local businessman Tom Dean as the long-debated deal travels toward its latest vote before the City Council tonight? Fourth District Councilmember Patrick O’Donnell suggests you ask yourself a question, instead: Are you for the wetlands—or against them? “Tuesday night you […]

NEW SIGN IN COLLEGE PARK WEST POINTS TO ANOTHER DIFFICULT SPRING FOR COYOTE-HUMAN COHABITATION


Three weeks after a coyote alert was called in East Long Beach, officials from Long Beach and Seal Beach are about to post a warning banner at the entrance to the College Park West neighborhood (above). But coyotes are clever (right), not to mention more than a little bit deserving of our sympathy, cornered as […]

IN MEMORY OF ARNOLD’S RESTAURANT, MY 2006 OC WEEKLY REVIEW, TITLED: ‘DID YOU TAKE YOUR PILL?’


PUBLISHED DEC. 7, 2006 / OC WEEKLY Kids 12 and under eat free—one with each paying adult—on Mondays at Arnold’s Buffet Restaurant in Long Beach. It’s a marketing strategy intended to whet young appetites for the dying experience known as cafeteria dining. But today is Wednesday, and the customers sliding their trays along the rail […]

DISQUALIFIED FOR HER FRIENDSHIP BRACELET? THAT’S MY STORY (ON SPORTS ILLUSTRATED WEBSITE)–AND I’M LINKING TO IT


BY DAVE WIELENGA / SI.COM Remember the story of the college softball player who hit the game-winning homer and blew out her knee as she trotted around first base, but was carried to second, third and home by opposing players — even though she represented the decisive run in a game that determined the championship? […]

CONFIRMED: MAYOR FOSTER ENDORSES JAMES JOHNSON IN 7TH DISTRICT RACE


Mayor Bob Foster officially endorsed assistant city auditor James Johnson for the Seventh District seat on the Long Beach City Council today, confirming a report published Thursday by Redistricted! The announcement came early this afternoon in a press release from the Johnson campaign and included this prepared statement from Foster: “James Johnson has the experience […]

MAYOR FOSTER ABOUT TO ANNOUNCE HIS ENDORSEMENT OF JOHNSON OVER REYES URANGA IN 7TH DISTRICT RACE


After four years of behind-the-scenes political patronage, Mayor Bob Foster has apparently decided to bestow his official endorsement upon James Johnson for the Seventh District city council seat currently occupied by Tonia Reyes Uranga. The two candidates are facing off in a June 8 runoff election for the only undetermined spot on the Long Beach […]

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, EGRETSNOTREGRETS.COM—ONE YEAR LATER, STILL “KILLING A BUNCH OF BIRDS WITH ONE STONE”


It was one year ago today that Heather Altman—an environmentalist at both work and play—laid out the first installment of her vision for a new local order by debuting her ultimatum-y sounding blog, EgretsNotRegrets.com. Results from the first 365 days are mixed. Egrets? The great-and-snowy coastal birds are still here. Regrets? Ditto. The darkly haunting […]

CHECK OUT THIS LAKEWOOD COUPLE’S LITTLE BIT OF MID-CENTURY HEAVEN…


A Lakewood couple’s imaginative and oh-so-cool remodel of their small mid-century home is currently featured on the home design website, Apartment Therapy, as well as making me feel … ohhh, sorta lame. My home is a stucco box of about the same size and vintage as the one that Kristen James and Mike Dunn moved into a […]

ALL WRITEY!!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS/CRITICISMS/LOVE NOTES/WITTICISMS


APRIL 24, “BELLFLOWER TRYING TO REDEVELOP ITS ECONOMY WITHOUT RIPPING OUT ITS HEART” Recently, I have been talking about this issue of the dying (or should I say dead) downtown with a few of my Bellflower friends. It seems like a classic case of they don’t care so we don’t care. Unfortunately this means that […]

SECOND+PCH HAS A PLAN, E-I-R-I-O! AND IN THAT PLAN THERE’S A TALL HOTEL, E-I-R-I-O!


  (The Environmental Impact Report [EIR] for the proposed Second+PCH project was released this week, and local environmental activist Heather Altman—who also happens to read these types of documents for a living—is not impressed. “As I pick through it,” she says, “I am becoming increasingly aware that it isn’t very defensible—for a variety of reasons […]

SURPRISE! SECOND+PCH EIR REVEALS PLANS FOR AN EVEN-BIGGER MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT AT THE MARKET PLACE


The Second+PCH project may be an Odd Duck—the just-released Environmental Impact Report (EIR) reveals that its promoters have designed a residential/hotel/retail complex on the site of the Seaport Marina Hotel that is loaded with even more deleterious features than its rejected predecessor—but just wait until you get a load of its younger brother. Are you […]

BELLFLOWER TRYING TO REDEVELOP ITS ECONOMY WITHOUT RIPPING OUT ITS HEART


The City of Bellflower’s time capsule of a downtown is both heartwarmingly quaint and heartbreakingly … well without a heartbeat.  Bellflower Boulevard’s well-preserved architecture and its embalmed business district can probably both be traced to its citizens’ long opposition to creating a Redevelopment Agency, an orientation rooted in their suspicion that eminent domain might be used […]

ALL WRITEY!!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS/CRITICISMS/LOVE NOTES/WITTICISMS


Most of the this week’s reader feedback was to a pair of reports on the Long Beach City Council’s 7-1 vote to grant BANCAP  a $3,000 reduction of its monthly lease of city-owned waterfront property on the Seaport Marina because a sub-tenant, the Seal Beach Yacht Club, needs a break on its rent because of declining membership. BANCAP […]

TONIA REYES URANGA OBJECTS, BUT COUNCIL BAILS OUT BANCAP AND SEAL BEACH YACHT CLUB


Seventh District Councilmember Tonia Reyes Uranga cast the lone dissenting vote Tuesday night in the Long Beach City Council’s 7-1 decision (First District Councilmember Robert Garcia was inexplicably out of the room) to lop $3,000 a month off the rent it charges BANCAP Investment Group to lease a swath of Long Beach Marina-front property. Locals […]

WHY ARE LB TAXPAYERS BEING ASKED TO COVER THE RISK OF TWO WELL-CONNECTED MILLIONAIRES?


Why is the City Council being asked tonight to chop $3,000 a month off the rent it charges the mighty BANCAP Investment Group—headed by two of Long Beach’s most prominent and prosperous citizens, Stephen T. Conley and John W. Hancock—to lease a swath of Long Beach Marina-front property? According to city documents attached to the […]

‘UP IN SMOKE” AT ART THEATRE TONIGHT: HELP DISTRICT WEEKLY’S UNPAID FREELANCERS WITH A HAZY TRIP DOWN MEMORY LAME


How did 420—otherwise translated as April 20 or 4/20…or more to the point, today—become known internationally as the day to celebrate the healing/relaxing/inspiring/cotton-mouthing/squinty-eying/Snoop-Dogging characteristics of cannabis? Why do we so anxiously await Fatty Tuesday? Contrary to many myths, 420 has nothing to do with police code for pot-smoking, the number of active chemicals in marijuana, Hitler’s […]

TOM MARCHESE RESPONDS TO MARCH 30 REQUEST FOR HIS RESPONSE TO DON MAY’S ACCUSATIONS AT WETLANDS LAND TRUST ELECTION


Nearly three weeks after his lopsided loss in a bid for re-election to the Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust board of directors, Tom Marchese has responded to a request for comment that I left on his home telephone on March 30. Marchese, who four days ago lopsidedly lost a bid to represent the Third District on the Long Beach City […]

BLAH-BLAH-BLAH, MARIO GUERRA RUNNING FOR RE-ELECTION IN DOWNEY, YADDA-YADDA-YADDA


Downey’s chatterboxing city councilman, Mario Guerra, says he wants another term. Of course, Guerra doesn’t put it so succinctly as that. This guy’s got a mouth, and he likes to shoot it off. Guerra’s the guy who told me last Nov. 23 that Tesla Motors had selected Downey as the site of its manufacturing plant, […]

orange-sunshine link=”http://greaterlongbeach.com/08/04/2010/nick-schou-will-drop-a-little-orange-sunshine-saturday-evening-at-latitude-33-bookshop”]

NICK SCHOU TO DROP A LITTLE “ORANGE SUNSHINE” SATURDAY EVENING AT LATITUDE 33 BOOKSHOP


Nick Schou, my former colleague at OC Weekly, who has never let being a tremendous investigative reporter get in the way of being a great human being, will be at Latitude 33 bookshop in Laguna Beach on Saturday evening at 5 to read from his new book, "Orange Sunshine: The Brotherhood of Eternal Love and Its Quest to Spread Peace, Love, and Acid to the World."

KEMP INSISTS THAT THE APPEAL FOR PUBLIC SUPPORT OF SECOND+PCH PROJECT IS THE SAME AS IT EVER WAS


Carl Kemp is the man behind the impressive public-relations campaign for the proposed Second+PCH project, and he’s very up-front about his strategy—even the parts that strike some people as a little surreptitious. Consider, for example, the ready-made letter of support that Second+PCH is sending to people—and offering on its Web site—with a request that it be […]

ARTHUR J. PAUL DIED OF A WHOLE BUNCH OF STUFF, BUT THE LIST DID NOT INCLUDE REGRET


My wonderful old friend, Arthur J. Paul, died early this morning—of bone cancer, congestive heart failure, double pneumonia, some kind of enzymes thing in his kidneys or was it his liver and I think at least one other thing, and as I recite this list I can almost hear Arthur cutting me off with the […]

PRESENTING: THE DO-GOODER VIDEO AWARDS


 A friend of a friend of mine who works in fundraising at the nonprofit, The Wooden Floor, sent this to me. Great award idea, wonderful videos. Check out the one from the Wooden Floor, and vote if you’re so inclined. The winning nonprofit receives $2500 in program support.  http://www.youtube.com/user/nonprofitvideoawards 

REDISTRICTED! 101: EXPLAINING THIS SITE’S ACCOUNT OF MARCHESE’S LOSS IN LCWLT ELECTION


Redistricted! has received lots of criticism in the last couple of days about its report of the election the Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust (LCWLT) held Tuesday night to choose its Board of Directors.  Thanks for reading—and writing!  Because of the tone of most responses—disappointment, betrayal and anger; one person accused me of “using people and ruining reputations to get attention”—let’s […]

MARCHESE ACCUSED OF TRYING TO GET NON-PROFIT WETLAND GROUP’S MAILING LIST FOR HIS CITY COUNCIL CAMPAIGN


TOM MARCHESE Tom Marchese not only lopsidedly lost his battle for re-election to the Board of Directors of the Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust (LCWLT) Tuesday night, but questions raised about his ethics in a letter from the organization’s esteemed founder may have cost him any realistic chance to be elected to the Long Beach City Council on April 13. Don May, […]

QUESTION IS, WHY IS MIKE HEDGES RUNNING FOR LONG BEACH CITY COUNCIL?


Mike Hedges had three days to prepare for the question he knew was coming at Monday night’s Long Beach Press Club debate between the candidates for the city council’s 5th District seat. But when reporter Darcy Richardson of the Grunion Gazette asked Hedges about discrepancies in his campaign financing that have attracted the attention of […]

NO. 1 QUESTION AT 5TH DISTRICT DEBATE TONIGHT: WHO’S FUNDING MIKE HEDGES?


Tonight’s Long Beach Press Club debate between Fifth District city council candidates couldn’t come at a better time—as questions arise about who is funding Mike Hedges’ challenge to incumbent Gerrie Schipske. LBReport.com broke the story of the mysterious money that’s powering Hedges’ campaign on Saturday (March 27), noting that the City Clerk’s Elections Bureau had […]

JENSEN RESPONDS TO READER’S CHARGE THAT HIS TAKE ON SEADIP “SHOWS IGNORANCE”


Third District city council candidate Terry Jensen responded late Saturday night to a comment that a Redistricted! reader posted on March 25 regarding Jensen’s take on the proposed 2nd+pch mixed-used development—or at least the take Jensen expressed at last week’s candidates debate sponsored by the Long Beach Press Club. The reader, who self-identified only as “Laura,” charged that […]

{OPEN}: LONG BEACH’S ALTERNA-INSTITUTION PRESENTS NEW ART BY MATTY BYLOOS TONIGHT ON RETRO ROW


The owner/operators of {open} might not like to admit it, but the quirky bookstore/art chapel they founded in downtown’s East Village in 2003 has become a institutional pillar/load-bearing wall of Long Beach culture/cool since its 2007 move to Fourth Street/Retro Row. And by “might not like to admit it” I mean that they “might prefer […]

ABOUT FACE: CITY OFFICIALS NOW SAY DOWNEY STUDIOS WON’T CLOSE FOR TESLA


BY ERIC PIERCE / DOWNEY PATRIOT After the Downey Patriot’s story last week that Tesla Motors is seeking to lease 51 acres on the former NASA site, likely spelling the end of Downey Studios, city officials are now saying the movie studios “will remain open even after the new tenant arrives.” The Planning Commission approved an IRG […]

DELONG COMES THROUGH WITH HIS ANSWERS TO 'UNPOSED' 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE QUESTIONS


 [NOTE: A lot of questions from the audiences of Monday night's Third District debate sponsored by the Long Beach Press Club---people who gathered at the Gaslamp restaurant and those who watched the live Webcast on InstantPresenter---couldn't be asked before time ran out. After publishing those questions Tuesday morning, I e-mailed them to candidates Gary DeLong, Terry Jensen and Tom Marchese. With DeLong's responses here, all […]

TOM MARCHESE RESPONDS TO ‘UNPOSED QUESTIONS’ FROM MONDAY’S 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE


 [NOTE: A lot of questions from the audiences of Monday night's Third District debate sponsored by the Long Beach Press Club---people who gathered at the Gaslamp restaurant and those who watched the live Webcast on InstantPresenter---couldn't be asked before time ran out. After publishing those questions Tuesday morning, I e-mailed them to candidates Gary DeLong, Terry Jensen and Tom Marchese. Marchese responded about 11 p.m. […]

FIRST RESPONDER: TERRY JENSEN ANSWERS ‘UNPOSED QUESTIONS’ FROM 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE—AND WITHOUT A STUTTER!


      [NOTE: A lot of questions from the audiences of Monday night's Third District debate sponsored by the Long Beach Press Club---people who gathered at the Gaslamp restaurant and those who watched the live Webcast on InstantPresenter---couldn't be asked before time ran out. After publishing those questions Tuesday, I e-mailed them to candidates Gary DeLong, Terry Jensen and Tom Marchese. Jensen is […]

WHAT QUESTIONS WENT UNPOSED AT THE 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE? WELL, NOW THAT YOU ASK…


BY DAVE WIELENGA The three candidates running for the Third District seat on the City Council ran their mouths for more than 90 minutes Monday night during the Long Beach Press Club’s Debate At Da’ Beach. But there were still more questions than answers—a lot more. That’s what happens when constituents care enough about an […]

TONIGHT’S 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE MAY BE THE MOST IMPORTANT YET … TO THE MAYOR, ANYWAY


BY DAVE WIELENGA Tonight’s debate among candidates for the Third District seat on the City Council may be the most important of the Long Beach Press Club’s seven-part Debates At Da’ Beach series—well, to Mayor Bob Foster, anyway. He’s been telling people that he’ll “do anything” to see that incumbent Gary DeLong is re-elected over […]