Photos courtesy of YOUTUBE.COM & FLICKR.COM
By MATTHEW BAHK & WILL WONG
As summer vacation approaches and students are excited to enjoy their free time, expansions of the Metro Rail throughout the area may offer a valuable resource for them to use.
Previously, The Gold Line was best known for offering a very multicultural experience at a variety of prices, ranging from viewing free mariachi bands at Mariachi Plaza and tasting pricy, authentic sushi in Little Tokyo.
Last March, the Metro Gold Line expanded to six more stops, including Arcadia Station, Monrovia Station and APU/Citrus College Station, extending from the already railed Chinatown, Union Station and Old Town Pasadena stops.
More recently, the Metro Expo Line had expanded its rails to Downtown Santa Monica, only two blocks away from the Santa Monica Pier and beach. This new expansion takes advantage of LA’s diverse combination of both ethic cultural neighborhoods and more modern and trendy areas.
One Way Metro trips cost $2.75 (without a prepaid Metro pass) or $1.75 (with a Metro Pass).
Below are several locations and events compiled by the Spartan Scroll entertainment team that can be accessed using both the new Metro additions and some already existing stops on the Gold and Expo lines.
(MAKE MUSIC PASADENA (6/11)
Taking place in Downtown Pasadena, Make Music Pasadena offers quality music for free.
Scheduled June 11, Make Music Pasadena presents over 25 stages for musicians to perform for the public. With over 40 groups set to perform, attendees will enjoy the variety of types of music that will be played.
The event lasts from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. in several locations in Downtown Pasadena, including the Colorado Main Stage and the Memorial Park Stage.
Make Music Pasadena was originally conceived by Josefina Mora and Kershona Mayo, members of the Playhouse District Association and the Old Pasadena Management district, respectively, as a way to raise money for their districts through the nearby restaurants and cafes.
A schedule and the full lineup of all the performers with their time-frame can be found on makemusicpasadena.org.
(DOWNTOWN SANTA MONICA (Pier, Beach, Promenade)
Ranging from a pier stocked with eateries and its own amusement park to a 3.5-mile long beach to a street recognized to be the shopping center of the area, Downtown Santa Monica caters to all types of visitors.
The Santa Monica Pier includes an aquarium, bike rental shop and bait & tackle store, as well as an arcade and a carousel for children to enjoy. Its own amusement park, Pacific Park, features the Pacific Ferris Wheel, the West Coaster (42” height requirement) and other rides. Prices per ride range from $5 – $8; however visitors can attain an unlimited ride wristband online ($27.95 ages 8 & up, $16.95 ages 7 & below) and at the park (for a dollar more).
Offering swimming, surfing, outdoor volleyball and miles of space, the Santa Monica Beach provides as both a relaxing and exciting location. A total of 28 lifeguards stands are set up around the beach, providing a safe time.
On June 11, a variety of competitions and events will be taking place. Pier Paddle, a competitive paddleboard race and the AAU Beach Santa Monica Ocean Festival Volleyball Tournament are the main events on that day. While these events are free to view, those that want to participate can sign up through santamonicapier.org/pier-paddle.
From July 7 to Sept 8, Santa Monica’s Twilight Concert series returns. Various professional musicians will perform for free every Thursday from 7-10 p.m.
Visitors can utilize Santa Monica’s Breeze Bike Share program where they can rent a bike from one of 75 different hubs for an hourly fee of $6. Payments can be made through the Metro Transit Access Pass (TAP) card, but only if the card is linked to a Breeze account with a credit card. Their mobile application, the Social Bicycles App, provides information of where bike rental locations are and how far away each station is from the next. Bikes must be returned a proper station to avoid additional fees.
The 3rd Street Promenade shopping area offers 237 stores, all street-side and public, located in of Downtown Santa Monica. All stores are in relatively close proximity to one another, making it easy for visitors to have a shopping spree or enjoy window-shopping with an ocean backdrop.
The Downtown Santa Monica area can be accessed by taking the expanded Expo Line all the way to the Santa Monica stop.
(626 NIGHT MARKET)
Celebrating its fifth year of festivities, the 626 Night Market presents Asian-themed foods and a variety of entertainment for the public to enjoy.
Located next to the Westfield Santa Anita mall, the 626 Night Market offers visitors events, games, concerts, music, trucks and stalls to enjoy in a festival setting.
The 626 Night Market venue is located at 285 W. Huntington Drive and is open July 2-3 from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. on the Fourth of July. It is also open More information can be found on 626nightmarket.com.
Its sister event, the Orange County Night Market, will take place June 17-19 on 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa. More information, including vendors and entertainers scheduled to attend OC Night Market can be found at ocnightmarket.com.