January 1, 2009 Archives
New year, new fares for the buses L.A. World Airports operates from downtown Los Angeles, Van Nuys, and Westwood. KPCC’s Cheryl Devall has the details.
Cheryl Devall: The blue FlyAway buses whisk passengers from remote points to L.A. International Airport terminals for far less than taxis or shared-ride shuttles. That’s part of the problem, airport officials say.
Years after the service launched, it doesn’t come close to covering its costs. The buses lost $9.5 million last fiscal year - even as they boarded more passengers than ever.
So from now on, the one-way fare between Van Nuys or L.A. Union Station and the airport will be $6 instead of 4 for most passengers. A trip on the Westwood FlyAway will cost $5, up from 4 bucks.
The chief at L.A. World Airports - the agency that runs the buses - says she hopes the fare increase will move the FlyAway closer to paying its own way.
- January 1, 2009 2:15 PM
- Categories: Transportation
Dancers paid tribute to Broadway and sari-clad models honored India’s Bollywood films in this morning’s 120th annual Rose Parade. Its theme was “Hats Off to Entertainment.”
The parade also featured 21 marching bands. That wasn’t enough for spectator Betty Phelps.
Betty Phelps: “I think that they should have more high school than they do. The floats are pretty and nice but they should give other high schools here all over the world a chance to march in it. But if they do that the parade probably last like five hours.”
The parade’s grand marshal was actress Cloris Leachman.
Police arrested 36 people along the parade route, mostly for public intoxication. One man was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon after he allegedly threw beer bottles into the crowd.
Along the route of the Tournament of Roses parade, all kinds of people tend to enjoy the spectacle and set aside their differences - except when it comes to college football.
Kim Anderson: “I’m for UCLA and anybody who’s playing SC. So go Penn State, boo Trojans.”
[“She’s a traitor in our midst.” (laughs)]
That’s Kim Anderson of Pasadena and a guy in the crowd next to her during this morning’s Rose Parade. The USC Trojans are playing their fourth Rose Bowl game in as many years today against the Nittany Lions of Penn State.
- January 1, 2009 2:07 PM
- Categories: Sports/Recreation
Nearly two dozen marching bands and 18 equestrian units marched along Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena this morning for the 120th annual Rose Parade.
Among the people who staked out spots along Colorado were two bus drivers.
Betty Phelps: “Hi my name is Betty and my girlfriend is Suzie. She’s another bus driver and she don’t like the parade. Something have to be wrong with her. She don’t like the parade.”
Suzie Vuenas: “It’s not that I don’t like it - it’s that I am sleeping by this time.”
Phelps: “Well she need to wake up and see what’s going on around her.”
Vuenas: “OK, yeah, I’ll do that.”
Those were bus drivers Betty Phelps and Suzie Vuenas.
The floats commanded plenty of attention. One by Honda featured a 49-foot-tall mechanical man that shot fireworks and streamers out of its top hat. At one point, the robot snapped an overhead cable that held a street sign, but no one was injured.
For the second straight year, the irrigation company Rain Bird won the sweepstakes trophy - it entered a safari-themed float in today’s parade.
- January 1, 2009 2:04 PM
- Categories: Society/Culture
Days of warnings might have worked - Southland law enforcement reported very few incidents of celebratory gunfire this New Year’s Eve. But KPCC’s Cheryl Devall says it wasn’t a completely quiet night.
Cheryl Devall: Someone in Santa Ana fired a shot into the air shortly before midnight, and the bullet struck a man in the ankle. Santa Ana Police say they found out about the incident a couple of hours into the new year when hospital personnel let them know. Doctors expect the wounded man to recover.
Authorities in various parts of the Southland say they’ve fielded far fewer reports of random shooting this holiday than in previous years. The Santa Ana wounding was the only one reported overnight in Orange County, and sheriff’s deputies in Los Angeles County reported no fatalities and made no arrests for New Year’s gunshots between 10 last night and 4 this morning.
In an unrelated incident early this morning, three LAPD officers fired at a Panorama City man after he reportedly threatened his family during a party. Police evacuated the house where the 41-year-old man was armed with a handgun. The standoff ended when police determined the man had died; no one else was hurt.
Note: Police have not released the man’s identity.
- January 1, 2009 1:52 PM
- Categories: Criminal Justice
Different highlights appeal to different people at today’s Tournament of Roses Parade. For Roy Allen Hunt of Pasadena, it’s not the fancy floats or the high-stepping bands.
Roy Allen Hunt: “No, I love the bomber, the stealth bomber that, it just ripples me with some, some kind of feeling - I don’t know, pride, I don’t know. Futuristic. I just love that kind of thing.”
Two B-2 stealth bombers flew over the parade route this morning; they’re scheduled to make another pass over this afternoon’s Rose Bowl game.
In downtown Los Angeles, there’s a Japanese-style New Year’s celebration today. KPCC’s Molly Peterson has more on the Little Tokyo bash.
Molly Peterson: The Japanese Chamber of Commerce sponsors Oshogatsu. Until the end of the 19th century, it was a Lunar New Year; now it’s tied to the Gregorian calendar. The chamber’s Jeffrey Yamazaki says the event in Los Angeles is based on traditions in Japan.
Jeffrey Yamazaki: Everybody close the shops for around one week to celebrate. Especially for three days to get together with their families and to celebrate prosperity for the New Year’s.
Two stages fill with music and performance. Organizers distribute mochi - rice pounded into sticky cakes - and treasure bags to the first 300 children at the event.
Yamazaki says Little Tokyo’s party is meant to promote friendship among all the people of Asian descent who live and work in the neighborhood - it’s open and free to everyone.
- January 1, 2009 1:46 PM
- Categories: Society/Culture
Some of the new laws that take effect today may sound obscure, says Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Weintraub, who keeps track of lots of them. But, he told KPCC’s “Patt Morrison,” one of these laws could affect your next restaurant meal.
Dan Weintraub: One of my other favorites is this bill that allows chefs to buy restaurant fare directly from farmers and allows farmers to sell their products at their own farms, which begs the question, why did we have a law prohibiting chefs–
Patt Morrison: Yeah…
Weintraub: – from buying food from farmers. (laughs)
Morrison: Sounds like a no-brainer.
Weintraub: It’s amazing some of the stuff that is on the books.
Amazing but true – and as of today, that prohibition falls in California.
For many people, the New Year is a time for resolutions and new possibilities. Some people, though, can feel low, lonely, and stuck over past failures. That’s why it’s especially important at this time of year to connect with one another, Robert Mendelsohn of the Southern California Counseling Center told KPCC’s “AirTalk.”
Robert Mendelsohn: “Our message really is to people who are experiencing this kind of stress to reach out. If you see signs that someone in your family, or someone that you love, is increasing substance use, or is beginning to isolate, or is beginning to feel really down, we just encourage everyone to really – either us, or some other resource, or family and friends. Just relationship connection, looking for the resources around you to support each other.”
Mendelsohn is clinical director of the counseling center. His organization runs a toll-free, 24-hour suicide prevention hotline – 877-7-CRISIS.
- January 1, 2009 1:30 PM
- Categories: Health
Joining the throngs of visitors to today’s Tournament of Roses in Pasadena is the crew of the city’s seagoing namesake. US Navy Captain Doug Perry, commanding officer of the nuclear-powered submarine - the USS Pasadena - spoke with KPCC’s “Patt Morrison.”
Patt Morrison: So where did you park it?
Doug Perry: We, well, we left the ship. I wish we could bring the ship here but–
Morrison: So, 360 feet long, I don’t think you can make the turn at Colorado and Orange Grove.
Perry: It would be tough, but it’s downhill, so we might be able to make it.
The fast-attack submarine did not leave its home port of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. But the entire crew is in the Southland for the Rose Parade and the faceoff between USC and Penn State in the Rose Bowl. The Pasadena is the third Navy vessel named after the city of roses.
- January 1, 2009 10:35 AM
- Categories: Society/Culture