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Arts & Recreation

Los Angeles County residents and visitors have access to a vast array of cultural and recreational opportunities. In addition to all the attractions offered by the private sector, the County has a number of world-class facilities that it oversees, including the Music Center  (Walt Disney Concert Hall, Ahmanson Theatre, Mark Taper Forum, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion) ,  Hollywood Bowl, Museum of Art, Museum of Natural History, John Anson Ford Theatre and Marina del Rey. The County's gardens include the Arboretum and Botanic Garden, the South Coast Botanic Garden, Descanso Gardens, and Virginia Robinson Gardens. Under County management are 65,528 acres of parks, gardens, lakes, trails, natural areas and the world's largest public golf course system. These include 87 regional and local parks, 344 miles of horse and hiking trails, 19 golf courses and 31 public swimming pools. The County also manages 25 miles of beaches along the 75-mile mainland coast.



Highlights



First Fridays at Natural History Museum
The seventh season of “First Fridays” at the Natural History Museum launches Jan. 7 and will extend through June. The after-hours events (from 5 to 10 p.m.) are held on the first Friday of each month and include live music, discussion on how science affects the future, and curatorial tours.

Online Reservations Available for Parks, Dockweiler Beach Online Reservations Available for Parks, Dockweiler Beach
The public may now go online to make and pay for reservations at four Los Angeles County parks and Dockweiler Beach. Residents may access, review, schedule and reserve facilities and services, including swim lessons, picnic areas, RV park spaces, community rooms and conference quarters at Castaic Lake State Recreation Area, Arcadia County Park, Alondra Park, Charles S. Farnsworth Park and Dockweiler.
Reservations
  |   Press Release

Children Can Borrow Toys Free
The County’s Toy Loan Program, celebrating its 75th anniversary, allows children to borrow toys for free. There are 53 toy loan centers throughout the County.

Master Plan to be Developed for Ford Theatres Master Plan to be Developed for Ford Theatres
A master plan is being developed for the John Anson Ford Theatres to make recommendations on site expansion, preservation of historic elements, improvements in parking and traffic flow, improved visibility, and expansion and/or upgrade of the theaters. The plan is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Murals to be Created for Renovated Patriotic Hall Murals to be Created for Renovated Patriotic Hall
Famed Los Angeles muralist Kent Twitchell has been selected to paint three murals on the interior of Bob Hope Patriotic Hall, a downtown Los Angeles landmark built in 1926 currently under renovation. Twitchell’s artworks will celebrate the lost murals by Helen Lundeberg painted in Patriotic Hall during the Works Progress Administration in 1942.


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Did You Know?

  • Raging Waters in San Dimas is the state’s largest water park.
  • Descanso Gardens has the largest collection of camellias in North America -- 34,000 on 20 acres.
  • Walt Disney Concert Hall is designed to be one of the most acoustically sophisticated concert halls in the world.
  • Only a handful of concerts during Hollywood Bowl's history have had to be postponed due to rain.
  • There are more than 2,800 arts organizations and 150,000 working artists in Los Angeles County, creating the largest concentration of arts activity in the U.S.
  • The County manages the world’s largest public golf course system
  • The County operates 19 golf courses.
  • Golf tournaments must be reserved by Sept. 1 of prior year.
  • Golf reservations may be canceled up to 24 hours prior to tee time without penalty.
  • Golf reservations may be made up to seven days in advance for 2-5 member groups.
  • The musicians roster maintained by the Arts Commission is the only Internet database of vetted musicians in the County.
  • The County Holiday Celebration has been broadcast nationally on PBS since 2002.
  • Wireless fidelity (WiFi) is available at all County libraries.
  • Walt Disney Concert Hall's exterior is 22 million pounds of primary steel joined out of 12,500 individual pieces, none of which is identical.
  • Tourism is the third largest industry.
  • There are three horseracing tracks: Hollywood Park, Pomona Fairplex Park and Santa Anita Park (Arcadia).
  • There are 87 regional and local parks in the county system.
  • There are 238 public libraries in the County.
  • Theme parks include Universal Studios, Magic Mountain and Raging Waters.
  • The steel pieces of Walt Disney Concert Hall, placed end to end, would stretch 49 miles.
  • The organ in Walt Disney Concert Hall has 6,125 pipes.
  • The fountain statues at the Highland entrance of the Hollywood Bowl are the Muses of Music, Drama, and Dance.
  • The cruise-line industry in Los Angeles/Long Beach is the nation's fourth busiest arrival and departure point for vacations at sea.
  • The average temperature is 70 degrees.
  • The Walt Disney Concert Hall resembles a ship because architect Frank Gehry wanted to create the feeling of traveling along a ceremonial barge to music.
  • The Natural History Museum in 1913 was the first cultural institution to open the doors in Los Angeles.
  • The Natural History Museum houses the second largest natural history collection in the U.S. (33 million artifacts).
  • The Music Center includes the Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Mark Taper Forum and the Ahmanson Theatre.
  • The Museum of Natural History includes the Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits and the William S. Hart Museum.
  • The Museum of Art is the premier encyclopedic art museum in the Western United States
  • The La Brea Tar Pits is the world's only active urban excavation site of Ice Age fossils.
  • The John Anson Ford Amphitheatre is one of the oldest performing arts venues in Los Angeles still in use.
  • The Ford Amphitheatre was built in 1920 as the site of the Pilgrimage Play. A 1964 lawsuit forced the closure of the play due to its religious nature.
  • The County-owned Marina del Rey is the largest man-made small craft harbor in the U.S.
  • The County operates 31 public swimming pools.
  • The County operates 19 golf courses.
  • The County manages the world's largest public golf course system.
  • The County manages 63,000 acres of parks, lakes, trails, natural areas, and gardens.
  • The County manages 344 miles of horse and hiking trails.
  • The County manages 25 miles of beaches along the 75-mile mainland coast.
  • The County Library provides services to residents of unincorporated areas and 51 cities.
  • The County Library offers online reference help 24/7.
  • The County Library offers free online tutor homework assistance.
  • The County Library offers Family Place programs for parents and children ages 0-5.
  • The County Library is building five new libraries.
  • The County Library has its full catalog online.
  • The County Library has four ethnic resource centers with specialized historical and cultural materials.
  • The County Library has 84 libraries and four bookmobiles.
  • The County Library has 2.6 million registered borrowers.
  • The County Library circulates 14 million items annually.
  • The Arts Commission, in conjunction with the Getty Trust, funds the largest arts internship program in the world.
  • The Art Museum is undergoing a 10-year renovation project called Transformation.
  • The 1,241-seat outdoor Ford Amphitheatre is set against a backdrop of cypresses and chaparral. No patron is more than 96 feet away from the stage.
  • Sample career and SAT tests may be taken and scored online on the County Library website.
  • Only a handful of concerts during Hollywood Bowl's history have had to be postponed due to rain.
  • Marina del Rey is homeport to more than 5,000 pleasure boats.
  • LAX is the largest international gateway airport in California.
  • LAX is the No. 1 airport in the world for origins and destinations.
  • L.A. County has eight major professional sports teams: Dodgers, Lakers, Clippers, Sparks, Avengers, Galaxy, Chivas USA and Kings.
  • Hollywood Bowl is the largest natural outdoor amphitheater in the U.S.
  • County Library users may place a hold or renew materials online.
  • County Library staff answer 10 million informational questions annually.
  • Car racing fans can have fun at Irwindale Speedway, Pomona Raceway, Los Angeles County Raceway, Long Beach Grand Prix and the NHRA Winternationals.
  • Books can be downloaded to a computer or personal digital assistant from the County Library website.
  • Beaches, mountains, deserts; all within an hour's drive.
  • At the first concert at Hollywood Bowl on July 11, 1922, the audience sat on simple wooden benches placed on the natural hillsides of Bolton Canyon.
 
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