Pan African Film and Arts Festival Was Awesome!


The 22nd annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival came to a close this weekend but definitely saw a large influx of foot traffic throughout the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. The festival brought in more than 35,000 people from around the world to view films and showcases on display throughout the mall.

As the centerpiece of Baldwin Hills Crenshaw’s Black History Month programming, the event has a long-established history at the mall: in 1996, the Magic Johnson Theaters first hosted the Pan African Film Festival as part of its annual Celebration of African American Heritage. The festival has grown over the years to its current prominence, featuring screenings of globally acclaimed films, crafts produced by hundreds of fine artists and shows by award-winning comedians and spoken word performers.

This year’s Pan African Film Festival (PAFF) ran from Thursday, February 6 through Monday, February 17 with a lineup that included 179 movies from 46 countries. A culmination of PAFF took place in the form of Filmmakers’ Award Brunch at close of the festival, including Best Documentary Feature, Best Documentary Short, Best Narrative Short, Best Narrative Feature and Best First Feature Film, as well as audience favorite awards.

 22nd annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival Recap


Soccer Team Coming To Inglewood


There was so much heated speculation about the 60-acre Inglewood site (now a parking lot) just between the recently redone Forum and the shuttered Hollywood Park complex (soon to be a ginormous mixed-user) when it was revealed that Rams owner Stan Kroenke was behind the purchase. Many hoped the purchase pointed toward Los Angeles finally getting an NFL team back in town. Now it seems that the land might indeed be seeing some football—the European kind. LA Business Journal says that tabloids in England have been reporting that Kroenke is interested in buying a license for a soccer team that will be called LA Gunners, bringing them to the States and having them play in a stadium on the parcel. The Gunners would be a “sister team” to the London team Arsenal, in which Kroenke is a major stakeholder. LA already has two soccer teams; do we really need a third? Really?

LA Gunners

The Pan African Film Festival Going On NOW!


This year, the Pan African Film Festival celebrates its 22nd year with a 12-day movie marathon featuring movies from around the globe. Movies will be shown daily at Rave Cinemas Baldwin Hills 15, in the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza – home to the event.

The festival kicks off with the South African film, Of Good Report, directed by Jahmil X.T. Qubeka, a film about an obsessive teacher-pupil affair, which was banned in that country. A slew of movies will follow, including the world premiere of the much anticipated comedy About Last Night starring comedian Kevin Hart along with international screenings representing 46 countries including Argentina, Brazil, Bahamas, Canada, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Italy, Jamaica, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa and the United States.

Widely regarded as the largest and most prestigious black film festival in the nation, each year the Pan African Film Festival screens more than 150 films made by or about people of African descent. As in years past, this year’s festival is expected to draw thousands of movie goers.

Pan African Film Festival Feb. 6 thru Feb. 17

Magic Just Bought The Sparks


An investment group led by Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson and Mark Walter, founder and the chief executive officer of Guggenheim Partners and chairman of the Los Angeles Dodgers, announced Wednesday that they have purchased The Sparks, Los Angeles’ financially struggling WNBA team.

On the court the Sparks have been a winner, taking home championships in 2001 and 2002 and tying for second best record in the league last year. But money-wise the team’s been a loser. Sparks CEO Paula Madison said her family firm has lost nearly $12 million on the team since 2007, and was projected to lose another million this year.

Sparks Under New Management

‘A Night At The Forum’

untitledThe Forum in Inglewood had not officially reopened on Monday evening, January 13. Yet, the iconic venue has already helped raise millions of dollars to fight pancreatic cancer.  The Forum in Inglewood hosted “A Night At The Forum” to benefit The Lustgarten Foundation, the nation’s largest nonprofit funder of pancreatic cancer research.

It was the Inaugural West Coast fundraising gala for the Lustgarten Foundation, marking the first event held at the reinvented “Fabulous” Forum.

The sold-out gala fundraiser raised more than $12.5 million. This included nearly $2.5 million that will go directly to supporting The Lustgarten Foundation’s efforts to detect the disease earlier, develop better treatments, and ultimately, find a cure.

Stand Up To Cancer also announced that one of its funding partners would commit an additional $10 million to help support the ongoing fight to beat this lethal disease.  And because Cablevision Systems Corporation, The Madison Square Garden Company and AMC Networks agreed to underwrite the event, all proceeds raised from ‘A Night at The Forum’ are going directly to pancreatic cancer research.

$12.5 Million Raised For Pancreatic Cancer at the Newly Renovated Forum

A Night At The Forum

Largest Obersavtion Wheel In The World Craig!

Link Las Vegas Aug 26 2013 Link Las Vegas Nevada USA Photos By Denise TruscelloRemember I told you Las Vegas was building a big @$$ ferris wheel.  I ain’t lie, check out the progress on The Linq and High Roller.  The Linq is Development between the Quad Hotel and  The Flamingo Hotel set to take on the shape of The Grove in West LA.  Featured to be the biggest observational wheel in the world at 550 feet, The High Roller will cost $550 million (a million per foot lol) and easily become the home to an exciting, new attraction for all ages. At 550 feet, the High Roller will serve as a focal point of the $550 million open-air retail dining and entertainment district, which sits on the half-acre of land between The Flamingo and The Quad. The Linq is slated to open in part by December 2013 with a grand opening in February 2014.  This along with Las Vegas new Super Arena Coming will make a great addition to Sin City.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Vegas Big @$$ Wheel Nearly Done

The Linq

LA Zoo Turning Up For Halloween!!


This year, for the first time ever, the L.A. Zoo is presenting two spooktacular programs for Halloween – the annual family-friendly celebration “Boo at the Zoo,” happening over two weekends, Saturday, Oct. 19 – Sunday, Oct. 20 and Saturday Oct. 26 – Sunday, Oct. 27, plus the Zoo’s new nighttime event, “Night of the Living Zoo,” a 21-and-up frightful fete of truly monstrous proportions, taking place on Friday, Oct. 25. Following are the details for both of these exciting programs.

The 24th Annual “Boo at the Zoo”

 Due to its popularity in years past, “Boo at the Zoo” will take place over two weekends this year. Visitors are invited to wear their wildest costumes and enjoy trick-or-treating throughout the Zoo. Additional activities include pumpkin carving demonstrations, arts and crafts, creepy-crawly animal encounters, chomp n’ stomp animal feedings, and interactive storytelling and music with Campfire Cathy.

WHEN:           Saturday, Oct. 19 and Sunday, Oct. 20, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 26 and Sunday, Oct. 27, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Members’ preview: Saturday, Oct. 19 and Sunday, Oct. 27, 8:30 – 10 a.m.

COST:             Zoo Admission is $18 for adults; $13 for children 2-12; $15 for seniors 62 and up. Admission is free for GLAZA members and children under two.

INFO:             For more information, visit

Boo at the L.A. Zoo is proudly sponsored by 99 Cents Only Stores.

First-ever “Night of the Living Zoo”

A one-of-a-kind, 21-and-over Halloween celebration, “Night of the Living Zoo” will transform the Zoo into a theater of mysterious and macabre delights: enjoy the spine-chilling stunts of the Sideshow SirensDJ Johnny Hawkes spinning at the Tom Mankiewicz Conservation Carousel, and live musical performances by Batwings Catwings and Edgar Allan Poets, as well as a costume contest, hair-raising decorations and special effects, fortune tellers, creepy cocktails, and food truck favorites.

WHEN:           Friday, Oct. 25, 7 p.m. -12 a.m.

COST:             The event is $45 for pre-sale general admissions, and $40 for members of GLAZA. On the night of the event, tickets are at the door $50 for general admission and $45 for members.

INFO:             For more information and complete lineup of the Night of the Living Zoo activities, or to purchase tickets online, please visit The Night of the Living Zoo is 21 and over. No outside food or drink is permitted. No refunds. 

Halloween Children’s Celebration At Del Amo Mall

Kidgits Halloween Logo

Families can join Simon Kidgits Club for a special Halloween event, presented by Twentieth Century Fox, that focuses on fun fall festivities for kids

With nearly 158 million consumers participating in Halloween activities this year1, Simon Property Group, Inc. (NYSE:SPG), a leading global retail real estate company, is helping communities make the most of the exciting, eerie seasonal occasion. Del Amo Fashion Centerwill host its annual Simon Kidgits Club® Halloween Spooktacular event on Saturday, October 26 from 10 a.m. to noon in JoAnn’s Court, providing children the chance to enjoy the fall holiday with a special spooky experience that’s close to home.

In celebration of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment’s Blu-ray/DVD releases of children’s movies The Croods (Oct. 1), Monsters vs. Aliens: Cloning Around (Oct. 15), Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness: The Scorpion Sting (Oct. 15) and Dragons Riders of Berk Part 1 and Part 2 (July 23), kids can partake in even more activities inspired by the films:

  • Creepy, cool crafts: Make a mask from The Croods, try out Monsters vs. Aliens: Cloning Around temporary tattoos or design a flying dragon to mirror the character Hiccup from Dragons Riders of Berk, all in the spirit getting creative for Halloween.
  • Engaging games & photo opportunities: Get in on the Kung Fu Panda chopstick game and snap a photo with a life-sized TheCroods standee to capture the terrific, terrifying experience.
  • Trick-or-treat take-homes: Walk away with The Croods treat bag, Kidgits member-exclusive Halloween goodie, chance to win one of these popular DVD titles, coupons for parents and other surprises for families.

In addition, parents and costumed kids can enjoy traditional seasonal offerings during the family-friendly special celebration, including face painting by Magic Brush and Halloween-inspired crafts. Children will have the chance to make pumpkin face crafts, photo frame magnets, masks, ghost door hangers and can also participate in Halloween coloring. Simon Kidgits Club members will receive The Croods Halloween Trick-or-Treat Goody Bags filled with giveaways and a mini pumpkin, while supplies last.

“We know people come to Simon Malls to shop for décor, costumes and candy, plus we recognize our property serves as a community gathering place for social experiences and more,” said Lindsay Hermance, director of marketing and business development at Del Amo Fashion Center. “That’s why Simon Kidgits Club is delivering parents a platform to let their little ones truly experience a holiday they look forward to – Halloween.”

While you’re celebrating, pick out a special gourd at the Bob and Joanne Cottone and Sons Pumpkin Patch, open now through October 30 at 21573 Madrona Avenue, located at Del Amo Fashion Center next to Black Angus Restaurant. The pumpkin patch also features bounce houses, a petting zoo, pony rides and, of course, pumpkins of all shapes and sizes. They also carry straw bales, corn stalks, Indian corn, gourds, handmade crafts and all your different colored squash for harvest decorating. It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Visit for more information.

The Simon Kidgits Club is a fun and informative program that focuses on health, wellness, education, safety and entertainment for children ages 3-8. Since 2003, the Simon Kidgits Club has kept children and parents alike amused with various events and activities while providing incentives for club members, such as special offers, rewards and games.

Kidgits Club members receive a variety of perks and goodies, including a Kidgits Club T-shirt, membership card, birthday gift, chance to spin the prize wheel each visit to the mall, discounts and scheduled activities. For more information about the Simon Kidgits Club, visit or Del Amo Fashion Center on Facebook at, Twitter at or Instagram at

Supervisor Supports Bid To Host Olympic Marathon Trials In LA For 2016


Hoping to continue the push to host the 2024 Olympic Games, on Tuesday the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to support the LA Marathon, LLC’s  bid to host the 2016 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials for selection of both the Men’s and Women’s teams to compete in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The trials will be held on Saturday, March 12, 2016, the day before the 31st Annual ASICS LA Marathon. The course option for the trials will take runners throughout the City of Los Angeles, including Dodger Stadium, LA Live, the Coliseum, and various iconic areas in Hollywood.

The bid for the trials could bring Los Angeles one step closer toward hosting the Olympic Games in 2024. Los Angeles would be in competition with other U.S. cities, such as Philadelphia, Dallas and Washington, which are also hoping to host the games. Earlier this year, the U.S. Olympic Committee began outreach efforts to 35 cities about their interest in hosting the 2024 competition. The U.S. has not hosted the summer games since 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia.

While other cities have struggled with expenses, the 1984 Summer Olympics held Los Angeles has been considered the “most financially successful” in the history of the modern Olympics. This serves as a testament to Los Angeles’ ability to coordinate events of this logistic size and capacity, including the stellar coordination and cooperation between law enforcement, businesses, and private industry.

“The marathon course, which will wind its way throughout many of Los Angeles’ most iconic areas, is a splendid showcase of all that this county has to offer,” said Chairman Ridley-Thomas. “Using Los Angeles as the venue for the U.S. Olympic trails will be an excellent way to promote international competition, world peace and our Olympic bid.”

8th Annual Taste of Soul Is Back Upon Us!


Taste of Soul is back upon us!  This Saturday, October 19, 2013 one of the largest street festival, if not the largest in Los Angeles, will descend upon South Los Angeles.  Last years turnout exceeded  300,000! Taste of Soul brings out over 400 vendors supplied with good food and a variety of other merchandise along a 1.1 mile radius of the Crenshaw Blvd.  From 10am to 7pm ‘TOS’ will be in full swing.  Taste of Soul is FREE and so are all the performances!  Just be sure to bring plenty of spending money for all the great FOOD and get to the stages earlier to see your favorite performers!  Avant, Mario, RaVaughn, and Glenn Lewis are just a few of the  many performers set to grace the stage.

7th Annual ‘Taste Of Soul’