I was thrilled to attend the kick off for the Moonlight Forest Magical Lantern Festival. The Arboretum has been transformed by magnificent lantern art into a wonderland as vividly colorful as Chihuly Gardens. The illuminated displays center on three themes – Magical China, Nature’s Treasures and Children’s World.
Magical China acquaints visitors with Asian culture. Some highlights include the stunning Terracotta Warriors, an enormous Chinese palace, and my favorite, a dazzling Chinese dragon that stretches across Baldwin Lake. Learn about Chinese opera, Chinese zodiac and other traditions.
Nature’s Treasures offers a zoo-like experience right here in Arcadia! Elephants, giraffes, zebras are among the great variety of animals artfully depicted by the lanterns. Flowers and trees round out the nature theme.
Kids and grown-ups alike will be charmed by Children’s World. A stunning color-changing frog, charming Panda Paradise and vibrant Candy Tunnel are a few of the whimsical displays. Children also have the opportunity to create crafts with paint and dough.
But that’s not all! Chinese acrobats and dancers perform nightly, and a great selection of food trucks and bars offer refreshment to round out your Moonlight Forest experience.
You’ve got to come see this amazing fantasy of light for yourself! The Moonlight Forest runs Wednesdays – Sundays now through January 6, 2019. Visit arboretum.org for tickets. Your get 15% off if you get an Arboretum membership. It pays for itself and you can enjoy the Arboretum year-round with your family. Enjoy!
Splurge on the fancy cinnamon spice tea, fresh-pressed cider for
It’s no fun to turn on the heat for the first time only to realize that the
Take a walk around the outside of your home this weekend and make
Not so in love with your laundry room? For a quick update, bring in a vase of fresh flowers and treat yourself to a new laundry basket you love. Have a few more dollars (and hours) to invest? Hang a new wall shelf to hold your laundry supplies or swap out the light fixture for one that suits your style.
With (typically) more mild weather and golden light, early fall can be
If you grew herbs in your garden this year and they’re producing more
- Wash freshly cut herbs and dry lightly with a dishcloth or paper towels.
- Tie herbs into small bundles using rubber bands, twine or twist ties.
- Hang bundles indoors, out of direct sunlight, until dry and crispy.
- Once fully dried, store your herbs in airtight containers for six to 12 months.
September is Disaster Preparedness Month, and with hurricane season
- Pack disaster kits for your home and cars. The American Red Cross has a good checklist if you need guidance on what to include.
- Plan and practice for an evacuation from your home.
- Make a plan for staying in contact and meeting up with your family.
- Be sure your pets are microchipped or wearing tags in case you get separated.
Celebrate the 4th of July
Memorial Park > Times Vary
3: Pre-parade picnic, music, kids zone & more.
4: Celebrate all day with a 5k fun run, followed by the annual parade, music, games & fireworks.
Pasadena | Americafest
Rose Bowl Stadium > 2-9:30pm
4: Don’t miss this world-renowned fireworks show & entertainment at America’s Stadium.
Lacy Park > Opens: 7am, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Celebrate with food, fun zone, parade, entertainment & fireworks.
Library Park > Entertainment: 3pm, Music: 7pm, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Monrovia celebrates with entertainment, live music & fireworks.
South Pasadena | Festival of Balloons
Locations Vary > 7am-4pm, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Parade showcasing the balloons, pancake breakfast, celebration at the park & fireworks.
Crescenta Valley High School > 4-9:30pm
4: Annual celebration with live music, food from Berlin Truck & Slammin’ Sliders & fireworks.
Music in the Park
Memorial Park > 6-8pm
1: Sierra Madre Music Co.
8: Cash Up Front
15: Sgt. Peppers
22: Alumni Acoustic
29: Tenor Daniel Rodriguez
Finkbiner Park Bandshell > 6pm
1: City Beat and the Main Street Horns
8: Kings of 88
22: Creedence Relived
29: Night Owl Jazz Orchestra
La Cañada Flintridge
Memorial Park > 6-8pm
1: FM Radio
8: The Jack Lantz Big Band
15: My Generation
22: Cold Duck
29: Past Action Heroes
Farnsworth Park > 7pm
7: Kenny Sara & the Sounds of New Orleans
14: Susie Hansen Latin Band
21: Lisa Haley & the Zydekats
28: Mary Jane’s Last Dance
Saturdays at Station Square Amphitheater
Sundays at Library Park
Parks After Dark Concerts > 5:30-7:30pm
14: Jazz it Up! (Washington Park)
21: 80’s Vibes (Central Park)
Norton Simon Museum > 5-6pm
14: Del Mar Trio
21: Marlon Martinez & the Jazz Marlonius Quartet
Movie Nights Under the Stars
Old Pasadena Summer Cinema
Across Old Pasadena > Times Vary
5-28: Movie series featuring 17 screenings in various urban locations.
Finkbiner Park Bandshell > Dusk
11: Lego Ninjago
Memoral Park > 8pm
13: Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
27: Sherlock Gnomes
21: Space Jam (Julian Fisher Park)
28: The Sandlot (Recreation Park)
Fun in the Outdoors
Classic Car Nights
Lake Avenue Church, Pasadena > 6-8pm
13 & 27: Classic car show with burgers, live music, a raffle & all ages fun.
Colorado Street Bridge Party
Colorado Street Bridge, Pasadena > 6-11:30pm
14: Music, dance, activities & more. Visit the Podley volunteers at the wine & beer bar!
Glendora Village Art Walk
Glendora Village > 5-8pm
20: Featured artists interact throughout the Village while showcasing their pieces & process.
Altadena Chalk Walk
Altadena Library > 10am-3pm
21: Twelve artists showcase their works. There is extra space to create your own chalk masterpiece.
Dancing Under the Stars
The Paseo, Pasadena
Dance Lesson: 7-7:30pm, Music: 7:30-9:30pm
22 & 29: Learn some dancing steps, then enjoy free live motown & rock.
MAFA Summer Art Walk
Old Town Monrovia > 7-10pm
28: Stroll in the cool summer air & enjoy art demos, live music & more.
1. Pick one (or more) simple earth-friendly tweaks to up your energy-efficiency game. Something as simple as remembering to always shut off lights and unplug devices when you leave a room can add up to energy savings over the course of a year. Other easy tweaks to make right away include swapping traditional bulbs for compact fluorescent or LED bulbs, sealing up holes and cracks around the house, and installing low-flow fixtures.
2. Buy nothing (new) for a day. Reduce consumption and save cash by intentionally avoiding unnecessary shopping for a day this weekend. If you do have a need for an item, opt for secondhand, thrift or antiques stores over your regular go-to shops. Want to take it a step further? Join a local Buy Nothing group and swap goods with neighbors to avoid unnecessary purchases.
3. Pare back your book collection. If the weather is looking less than springlike in your area, keep busy indoors with a decluttering project. Bolster yourself with good music and start filling a bin with books to give away or sell.
4. Find a good home for hard-to-donate items. Whether it’s a stash of leftover yarn, spare building materials or unused personal care products, when your go-to local charity won’t accept an item, it can be hard to know what to do — which usually means these things pile up in closets and cupboards. Ferret out your stashes of stuff you’ve been holding on to for far too long, and track down a good home for it.
It’s always a good idea to call a potential donation spot first, as policies vary by location. The tips below can get you started.
- Habitat for Humanity’s ReStores take building materials and furniture.
- Some homeless and women’s shelters accept unopened personal care products.
- Senior centers are often happy to accept donated yarn.
5. Set up your kitchen for a rise-and-shine Monday. Combat that case of the Mondays by doing a little extra prep on Sunday evening. Fill a blender with smoothie ingredients and store it in the fridge, fill the coffee pot with water, and make sure everything is neat and tidy. You may not have little birds helping you get dressed in the morning, but at least you’ll have something good to drink.
6. Start planning for house painting. Spring and summer are prime times for house painting, and if you’re hiring pros, it helps to get on their schedule early. Start searching for painters, checking references and scoping out paint colors so you (and your house) are ready to go when it’s painting time.
7. Help clean up a natural area. Earth Day offers lots of opportunities to pitch in and make our parks, beaches, forests and wetlands cleaner, safer places for wildlife. Search for a cleanup event happening near you, or gather with friends and family to clean up a favorite nature spot on your own. Even when cleaning up, remember to stay on marked trails and carry out everything you bring in.
Elias J. “Lucky” Baldwin was one of the greatest and most colorful pioneers of California business in the second half of the nineteenth century. He made his mark on the development of Southern California, starting with the Santa Anita Rancho.
Passing through the San Gabriel Valley on a business trip in the 1870s, Elias J. “Lucky” Baldwin was amazed by Santa Anita Rancho’s rich land, rolling contours, and great oaks. He gasped, “By Gad, this is paradise!” and he simply had to have it, even though its price was high and only increased every time he spoke to its owner. Once he purchased the Santa Anita, he planted orchards and vineyards in the lowlands and grazed livestock on the oak-dotted hillsides. On the western edge of his land were the Baldwin Stables with Lucky’s championship racehorses.
During the land boom of the 1880s, Baldwin sold 845 acres of the Santa Anita Rancho to Nathaniel Carter who formed the town of Sierra Madre, and 240 acres to William Monroe who created the town of Monrovia. When Baldwin saw how Carter and Monroe profited by selling plots to easterners arriving on the newly completed railroad, Baldwin decided he would not be left out.
Baldwin set up his own town site with beautiful tree-lined streets, including a double-drive he called Santa Anita Avenue. Lucky named his town Arcadia, or “serene countryside”. When told the prices he was charging for homesites were too high, he argued, “We’re giving the land away. We’re only selling the climate!” Baldwin put his profits into improving his home ranch with driveways, lawns and shade trees. He built a Queen Anne Style cottage by his lake for entertaining.
When he passed away in 1909, Arcadia mourned the death of its founder. The city praised his “great charity for the deserving and helpless, his great eye for the beautiful in nature, his great love for the things that grow, his adoration for our native trees, and his faculty for beautifying the land, all of which during his life, tended to the upbuilding and planting of this little city, in the midst of the most beautiful valley of the State.”
Santa Anita Derby April 7, Stepping Stone to the Kentucky Derby
If you’re excited about watching the Kentucky Derby on May 5, you wouldn’t want to miss your chance to see two of its top contenders slug it out right in our own backyard. Kentucky Derby favorites Justify and Bolt d’Oro will run in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby this Saturday. It’s a race contested by 3-year-olds at a distance of 1/18 miles or 9 furlongs.
Justify is a relatively inexperienced colt. He would need to win first or second on Saturday to become eligible to run in the Kentucky Derby. If he wins the Kentucky Derby, he would make history as the first horse since 1882 to win after not racing as a 2-year-old! “This horse is just imposing. He is big and bad and his stride is fluent. If you’re looking for a horse that is progressing perfectly at the right time to win the Derby, then this is your boy.”- Pete Monaco, The Eighth Pole.
Bolt d’Oro’s name is a tribute to sprinter Usain Bolt. He’s already qualified for the Kentucky Derby and is a favorite to win it. “Justify? I say bring him on.” says Bolt d’Oro’s trainer Mick Ruiz. “Bolt d’Oro…hasn’t had a bad race. He’s all class, shown he’s got the heart and fits well with the top contenders. He will be one of the deserving top choices come Derby day.” – Pete Monaco, The Eighth Pole.
Excitement is building in Arcadia for The Santa Anita Derby. The Derby has produced countless racing legends, and you may just get a chance to see legends in the making this Saturday! Visit santaanita.com for more details.
- E.Waldo Ward & Son
Gourmet Food Products
Tucked behind a beautifully maintained Victorian home on Highland Avenue you can fine one of Sierra Madre’s hidden treasures. E. Waldo Ward produces, among other things, some of the best marmalade you’ll ever taste!
In 1891, Edwin Waldo Ward moved to Sierra Madre from New Jersey and bought ranch land from the town’s founder, Nathaniel Carter. Ward imported Seville orange trees from Spain and created marmalade that rivaled Britain’s finest. The company is now run by E. Waldo Ward’s great-grandson Jeff Ward. Jeff has expanded their products to include everything from Acai Pomegranate Jelly to Sriracha BBQ.
Jeff can take you on a tour of the barn, canning factory, and charming little museum. Wildlife roams among the original orange trees still growing on the idyllic property. E. Waldo Ward employs twelve workers, and they consult with a food scientist when developing new products – apple salsa will be available soon! In addition to selling items under their own label, E. Waldo Ward creates items for fine food stores like Bristol Farms. They create marmalade for the Huntington Library and Arlington Gardens from their own oranges.
E. Waldo Ward is located at 273 E. Highland Avenue in Sierra Madre.Saturday tours are available by appointment, and led by Jeff Ward himself. Store hours are Monday – Friday 8:30 to 4:30, and Saturday 10:00 to 3:00.