All About the City of Angels

I was raised in South Central Los Angeles in the Crenshaw district in the late Eighties and Nineties. I am proud to say that I am an Angeleno. From Hollywood to Van Nuys, the City of Los Angeles is my stomping grounds.

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Crenshaw Blvd in LA; Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.

Los Angeles is a diverse and large city with the second largest population in the United States. The city was founded on September 4, 1781 and was originally called “El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de Los Ángeles del Río Porciúncula” meaning “Town of Our Lady the Queen of Angels of the River Porciúncula”.

The city is all about beautiful weather and landscape with palm trees invading the skyline. I consider the palm tress to be the unofficial symbol for the city.

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Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.

My neighborhood is situated right off of Jefferson Park and Crenshaw Blvd. Growing up, my street seemed large and massive. This is the site of where many movies, television shows, and commercials were filmed. I was once paid to keep stray animals away from the production set for the chihuahua Taco Bell commercials (good times).

I attended Mount Vernon middle school which is the same school that the late Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. attended. The school was named after him in 2006. I can say that I follow in the steps of greatness (I can be a little nostalgic).

There is almost every culture represented in the city with ethnic enclaves spreading throughout the metropolitan area. You can get Salvadoran pupusas or enjoy some great Ethiopian cuisine. Each neighborhood has its own cultural and unique personality.

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Monument to celebrate the Salvadoran culture in LA. Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.
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Ethnic enclave of the Armenian community. Photo courtesy of Tony Polanco.

There is so much to do in the City of Angels that it requires you to plan ahead. That LA traffic is no joke so plan ahead and leave early. One mile can turn into a forty-five minute fit of rage on the I-5. Los Angeles has some of the worst traffic in the world. I now understand why my dad was so frustrated after those long drives.

Highway traffic in Los Angeles. Photo courtesy of http://beagreencommuter.com

A great place to visit is the Griffith Observatory. The observatory is located on the southern tip of Mount Hollywood with stunning views of Los Angeles and the Hollywood sign.

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Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.
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Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.
Views from the Observatory. Photo courtesy of Tony Polanco.

The observatory was founded by Griffith J Griffith. Griffith donated the land that it sits upon in December 1896 and envisioned an innovative facility that uses advance astrology. I use to come here and reflect on life while looking over the Los Angeles skyline.

Upon the entrance of the observatory, you are met by the Astronomers monument. The Astronomers Monument is a sculpture commemorating the greatest astronomers of all time: Hipparchus, Nicolaus Copernicus, Galileo Galilei, Johannes Kepler, Isaac Newton, and John Herschel. On the top of the monument, sits a nine-hundred pound hollow bronze armillary sphere. The Astronomers Monument was completed in November 1934 and was to include Albert Einstein but he was never added because he was still alive. As a kid, this statue used to freak me out.

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The Astronomers Monument. Photo Courtesy of Tony Polanco.

An unknown gem located in Exposition Park is the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. All USC fans know this place (my entire family are USC fans). The outdoor sports stadium serves as the stadium for the University of Southern California Trojans and a temporarily stadium for the Los Angeles Rams. The stadium will also hold the Summer Olympics of 2028.

Photo courtesy of Tony Polanco.

Angeleno Land is a must for all travelers.

Thank you for stopping by and much love!

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14 thoughts on “All About the City of Angels

  1. LA, represent! I grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles, so I didn’t often go downtown while growing up; it wasn’t until I became an adult that I’ve been more adventurous exploring the city. There’s so much to offer in terms of food and good vibes that it’s no wonder LA’s a top destination in the world! Hope to get my hands on pupusas some day…and as a UCLA grad, looks like your allegiance to USC makes us rivals!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know the feeling! I want to go explore more places that are often overlooked. Check out Santa Monica for some great pupusas. My oldest daughter is actually considering UCLA and breaking away from the family tradition of USC.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Have visited most of the spots on your post and enjoyed them all – except the traffic of course. A fond memory is hiking up and down to the observatory — very cool. Reading an interesting book right now about the major fire at the Central Library of LA. Great history of the city and interesting perspective on the fire and the city.

    Liked by 1 person

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