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AVALON AMBASSADORS LEAD YOUTH TOUR OF AVALON BLVD

AVALON AMBASSADORS LEAD YOUTH TOUR OF AVALON BLVD

Written and photographed by Rachel Lindt

On Thursday, September 3rd, Avalon Ambassadors Eric Lederhos and Osvaldo Garcia led a tour of Avalon Blvd. small businesses for the SBCC Thrive L.A. youth group. The idea to create and lead a tour geared towards the youth of Wilmington came out of a collaborative meeting between the On Avalon team and the SBCC Thrive L.A. youth group during one of their Thursday meetings. SBCC Thrive L.A. is a non-profit organization in Wilmington that works to empower communities in Los Angeles County to discover and develop tools for individual and collective well-being. As a group that is working to better the community as Wilmington youth, collaborating with SBCC Thrive L.A. seemed like a natural fit.

COMMUNITY FEEDBACK FROM PILOT 2

COMMUNITY FEEDBACK FROM PILOT 2

Written by Rachel Lindt; All images by Javi de Leon

On the evening of Thursday, August 13th over 150 Wilmington community members activated a portion of Avalon Boulevard that is often without visitors come sundown. With an outdoor movie, free catered food, and an installation of lights, the Wilmington Municipal Building parking lot became a hub of community activity. In order to capture feedback about Pilot 2 from attendees and inform the direction of Pilot 3, LA-Más created two stations for community engagement. The following is an overview of the two strategies and some highlighted results:

ON AVALON PILOT 2: LIGHTING INSTALLATION + SCREENING OF THE BOOK OF LIFE

ON AVALON PILOT 2: LIGHTING INSTALLATION + SCREENING OF THE BOOK OF LIFE
Lights, camera, action. On the evening of Thursday, August 13th, the Wilmington Municipal Building’s parking lot was fantastically transformed.

Written by Rachel Lindt; All images by Javi de Leon

One hundred chairs, eight tables, and fifteen ambient lighting pillars filled the parking lot while an animated film danced on the outside white wall. The smell of fresh watermelon and lime filled the air. Stomachs were happy and full of homemade flautas, white beans, rice, and horchata. This scene marked the launch of Pilot 2: an evening of complimentary dinner, a public screening of The Book of Life, and an opportunity to provide interactive input for the re-imagining of Avalon Boulevard. Starting at 6:30 p.m., Wilmington community members began arriving to the event with beach chairs, blankets, and excited faces.

SANTA LUNA: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

SANTA LUNA: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT
Recently, our two Avalon Ambassadors, Eric Lederhos and Osvaldo Garcia, sat down with Santa Luna’s chef and owner, Antonio, to chat about his newest restaurant endeavor on Avalon Boulevard.

Written by Osvaldo Garcia and Eric Lederhos, with support from Nikki Polizzotto, Tiffany Swift and Rachel Lindt; Images by Osvaldo Garcia

Antonio has a long history with cooking; at just 8 years old he began helping his mother and father prepare meals for the family. From there, the seed for his career as a chef was planted.

Antonio opened Santa Luna on Avalon Boulevard three years ago as a family businesses. The family connection and Antonio’s love for cooking and creative design is clear from the moment you walk into Santa Luna. The bright space is overflowing with colorful decorations and smells of garlic and fresh vegetables. His daughter helped him with the decorations of the restaurant and came with Santa Luna when they were just dreaming of starting a restaurant during financially difficult times.

DISCOTECA CASA LOZA: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

DISCOTECA CASA LOZA: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT
Highlighting businesses on Avalon Blvd.

Written by Eric Lederhos, with support by Rachel Lindt; Image by Eric Lederhos

Discoteca Loza is a wonderful music shop with great qualities. The shop has been around since 1972, for a total of 43 years, and owned by Gustavo Loza. Gustavo is an amazing person with talent all around him – Gustavo’s son made the luchador statues (Mexican wrestling) displayed in the front and back of the shop. Gustavo says it is a conversation starter and he is proud to show his son’s artwork to his customers. 

HOME + TREASURES: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

HOME + TREASURES: WILMINGTON SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT
Highlighting businesses on Avalon Blvd.

Written by Karla Monsivais, with support by Rachel Lindt; All images by Karla Monsivais

When you walk into Home + Treasures on Avalon Boulevard in Wilmington, you feel like it is a home. You are welcomed by a smiling face, interesting items, and a sweet, rustic smell.
Olga Diaz, owner of Home + Treasures thought about opening a restaurant, but felt burned out from the food industry. After having her kids, the kitchen was not her passion. Olga’s husband had a car mechanic shop, but it did not work out, so they thought of other ideas for businesses. They liked the feeling of owning their own shop. After some time they decided on a thrift store and opened Home + Treasures by initially selling their personal furniture. The store has been open for 1 year and 5 months.

Highlights from the Make-Up Tour

Highlights from the Make-Up Tour

Written by Tiffany Swift

On Thursday July 30, Avalon Ambassadors Osvaldo Garcia and Karla Mosivais led a make-up tour of the Pilot 1 installation and featured businesses on Avalon Blvd. Tour attendees included Councilmember Joe Buscaino and his staff, Wilmington business owners, community organizers, students and long time residents, who together had a lively discussion on how to revitalize Avalon Blvd. Here are some highlights:

Walking / Talking Tour highlights from Avalon Ambassadors

Walking / Talking Tour highlights from Avalon Ambassadors
Avalon Ambassadors lead walking / talking tours in an afternoon filled with rain, smiles, conversation and food!

Written by: Osvaldo Garcia and Eric Lederhos with support from Nikki Polizzoto and Tiffany Swift

After an intense day of installing Pilot 1 in front of Wilmington City Hall on Friday, LA-Más held a small business open house Saturday afternoon, which featured a variety of small businesses along Avalon Boulevard. Despite the less than ideal weather, the event had an excellent turnout with lively and thought-provoking conversation between Wilmington community members on everything from what they thought of the Pilot 1 installation to what they’d like to see on Avalon Boulevard five years into the future.

Our Avalon Ambassador and Wilmington resident, Eric Lederhos, led a small business tour that featured Vazquez Auto Repair, Design Upholstery, Santa Luna Restaurant, Home & Treasures Thrift Store, and Maya Restaurant. Along the way, participants were able to sip on juice and eat chips at Santa Luna, sample sweet treats at Design Upholstery and Home & Treasures, and try a quesadilla at Maya!

Pilot 1 Launch

Pilot 1 Launch
With the launch of On Avalon’s first pilot, small business tours introduced residents to local businesses and an installation of planters serves as a prompt to question the future of the boulevard.

On Avalon’s first pilot project was launched on Saturday, June 18. Despite the rainy weather and thunder throughout the morning, Saturday afternoon’s event continued on and attracted many interested Wilmington residents. Bright teal business markers lined the north and south ends of Avalon, coordinating with an installation of planters and seats located on the sidewalk in front of Wilmington City Hall. In collaboration with Clean Wilmington, who is sponsoring and maintaining the plantings, and the local businesses on Avalon Blvd., LA-Más was able to host a successful launch event alongside support from the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce and Councilmember Buscaino’s office.