Go Metro Weekends, April 18 – 20

Hello again! Here are some events over Easter weekend that should keep your pockets and weekends full!

Friday

For all of you “old school” music lovers out there, hit up the Art Laboe Block Party at The Forum! Join the likes of Evelyn “Champagne” King, ZAPP and Sugar Hill Gang. Doors open at 7:30 p.m and tickets are still on sale. Prices vary. (Metro Bus 115 or 212 to Manchester/Prairie)

Saturday

If you have a pet that you really care about, bring him or her to the Blessing of the Animals at Pueblo De Los Angeles. It’s free, with ceremonies starting at noon. Reminder: pets are only allowed to board Metro in a secured carrier. (Metro Red, Purple or Gold Line to Union Station, several Metro buses to Union Station including lines 40, 704, 733 and Metro Silver Line)

If you missed out on Coachella, use the money saved for Brokechella! Created specifically for those on a slimmer budget, this DTLA music and art showcase features some of the hottest up and coming artists in Los Angeles and beyond. Gates open at 3 p.m., with tickets ranging from $20 – $25. (Metro Bus 18 to 6th/Mateo then walk north along 6th Street to Santa Fe, or Metro Bus 60 to 7th/Santa Fe)

Sunday

Have any Easter plans? Join the Aquarium of the Pacific for a special Easter Breakfest at 8:30 a.m. Ticket prices vary. If you’d like to visit the rest of the aquarium afterwards or on any other day, use your TAP card to get a discount on admission!  (Metro Blue Line to Downtown Long Beach Station, then use free Passport bus to Aquarium entrance)

Afterwards, head to Duff’s Cakemix for some Easter cupcake decorating! Bring the kids along for some family fun. The event starts at 3 p.m., tickets are $25. (Metro Bus 217 to Fairfax/Melrose then walk 1/2 mile west along Melrose Avenue)

All Weekend

Enjoy some night shopping at the K-TOWN Night Market this weekend! The event takes place at the RFK Community Schools and starts Friday from 4 p.m to midnight and Saturday from 2 p.m. to midnight. Admission is free. Don’t forget to get your FREE drink when you show you TAP card. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Wilshire/Vermont Station, Metro Purple Line to Wilshire/Normandie Station)

Service alert: boarding change for Dodger Stadium Express at Union Station

Temporary Bus Stop Diagram

Due to construction work at Union Station’s Patsaouras Transit Plaza, the boarding location for the Dodger Stadium Express is shifting temporarily from Bay 3 to the front of the Metro headquarters building on the north side of the plaza — as shown on the above map.

The new boarding location takes effect for Friday night’s game against Arizona.

There will be Metro staff on hand on the plaza and inside Union Station to help guide passengers, as well as signs pointing the way. If coming from inside the station, please use the left escalator or stairs up to the plaza.

Click here for more information on the Dodger Stadium Express.

Our first podcast: filming over the years at Union Station

A scene from the "The Dark Knight Rises" that was filmed in the old ticket room  at Union Station. Credit: Warner Bros.

A scene from the “The Dark Knight Rises” that was filmed in the old ticket room at Union Station. Credit: Warner Bros.

Good morning, readers and listeners! Above please find our first Metro podcast. The subject: filming at Los Angeles Union Station over the decades, a subject that Kim tackled earlier this week as part of her ongoing series of posts on Union Station’s 75th anniversary.

We’re new to the podcast thing and it’s going to take a few of these to completely find our footing in the audio world. If we sound like podcast rookies, well, we are. Please bear with us!

That said, I’m really excited about this. It’s great to post articles on the blog, but I think it’s also important for our riders and taxpayers to literally hear the voice of their government. I hope you enjoy our initial offering and we should have more podcasts soon.

 

Union Station: A classic on both big screen and small

This is the fifth of a series of posts on the history of Union Station that we are running this month. The station celebrates its 75th anniversary on May 3. 

With its dramatic angles and dark corners, Union Station is a black-and-white noir fantasy. Yet like a character actor who is aging well, the building has played many types of roles over the past 75 years in hundreds of films, TV shows and commercials.

If you were watching TV during the December holidays you probably caught the Mercedes Benz commercial posted above. Shot in the beautiful Union Station Ticket Room, it’s decked out as Santa’s garage and it looks stellar. And the cars? Amazing!

A few months ago in the TV series “Agents of SHIELD,” hacker Skye (Why does everyone think she’s so hot?) is kidnapped and taken to Union Station so her abductor can escape by train. (Go to minute 35.) She emails SHIELD her longitude and latitude, although she probably could have just said she was at Union Station. No matter. The agents catch up with her in the gorgeous Ticket Room and finally all advance to the East Portal where the SHIELD crew rescues Skye so she can live to hack and be hot again.

In Paramount’s beautiful 1950 noir film “Union Station,” starring William Holden, the station doubles as Chicago Union Station. It does not look much like its Chicago namesake but it does look incredible. And it’s amusing to see a few amenities that no longer exist, like phone booths and a luggage check room in the main concourse. No more phone booths, of course, and no more baggage checking in these days of increased security. You’ll love the trailer:

All areas of Union Station have been backdrops for films but the massive Ticket Room has played significant parts in dozens. In Ridley Scott’s sci-fi thriller “Blade Runner,” set in 2019, the Ticket Room is a police station and Harrison Ford looks like Indy. “Pearl Harbor” contains a romantic farewell in the Ticket Room. In the latest Batman adventure, “The Dark Knight Rises,” the Ticket Room is site of the kangaroo court overseen by Dr. Jonathan Crane, aka the Scarecrow:

What will future roles be for this versatile performer? Stay tuned. The station is also frequently used for music videos — the subject of our next post.

For more Union Station films credits check metro.net (yes, we know the list needs updating!). For Union Station booking guidelines, click here. For more information on booking the station as a shooting location, please contact Jeff Cooper at Hollywood Locations jcooper@hollywoodlocations.com.

RELATED:

Metro Motion celebrates beautiful Union Station’s 75th anniversary

Union Station: a grand opening

Union Station’s 75th: Seymour Rosen celebrates the opening

How Harvey House restaurants changed the West

Union Station: a man worthy of respect

TAP to get a free drink at the KTOWN Night Market this weekend

Get ready for the KTOWN Night Market on Friday and Saturday, April 18 and 19, at the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools in Koreatown. Enjoy free live performances at the Kollaboration Stage, join the K-Pop Experience, or mingle at K-Pop Fan Club Meet Up.

The outdoor event will feature more than 100 food and merchandise booths. Drop by the Seoul Sausage Company booth and show your valid TAP card to receive a free soda beverage with your food purchase.

The KTOWN Night Market starts at 4 p.m. on Friday and at 2 p.m. on Saturday. Both nights end at midnight and the event is free and open to the public. Get there via the Metro Purple Line to Wilshire/Normandie Station or the Red/Purple Line to Wilshire/Vermont Station. Metro Bus 20 also stops right in front of the night market at Wilshire/Alexandria.

To get an idea of what kind of food you can expect, watch the video after the jump. Warning: it contains graphic scenes of delicious food preparation and enjoyment.

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Go Metro Weekends, April 11 − 13

Folks heading towards Festival of Books

The Expo Line is going to see a lot of action this weekend – make sure to load your TAP card before starting your trip to avoid long lines at the TAP vending machines!

Another week done, another exciting addition of Go Metro Weekends awaits! But before we get to it, just another reminder that Patsaouras Plaza will be closed this weekend, so plan ahead if you’re making connections at Union Station–buses will be picking up at Cesar Chavez/Alameda. And a second reminder: due to many popular, Metro-accessible events taking place this weekend, we recommend you load your TAP card with cash fare/passes before starting your trip!

Friday

Reward yourself for getting through the week with the best comfort food there is: a big bowl of ramen from any of Little Tokyo’s many great noodle joints. Then amble over to the nearby Blue Whale Live Jazz + Art Space on 2nd/Los Angeles, where you can further relax with a live jazz performance. Tonight’s show starts at 9 p.m. and features jazz trio The North. Tickets are $15 at the door, must be 21+. (Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station.)

Saturday

If you’re attending the free K-Pop Festival at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum today, there’s no question: Metro Expo Line is the way to go. (Metro Expo Line to Expo/Vermont or Expo Park/USC stations.)

Also off the Metro Expo Line: L.A. sports! It’s a double header at the Staples Center this Saturday. The Clippers take on the Sacramento Kings at 12:30 p.m., and our own L.A. Kings face the Ducks at 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices vary. As always, score 10% off official merch at the Clippers and Kings team stores with valid TAP card. (Metro Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station.)

Composer and producer Karsh Kale presents Classical Science Fiction, a new groundbreaking work of classical Indian fusion and electronica at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex at 8 p.m. Metro riders save 20% on tickets. Pre-discount prices are $30-40 for adults, and $20 for students with ID. (Metro Silver Line to Cal State LA.)

Sunday

Catch two Angel City Derby Girls matinee games starting at 1 p.m. at the Culver City Veterans Auditorium, and get $5 off your ticket by showing your TAP card. (Metro Expo Line to Culver City Station and then walk west on Culver Blvd, or catch any Culver Blvd or Venice Blvd bus west to Overland Ave.)

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Go Metro to the Long Beach Grand Prix!

This weekend, head to Downtown Long Beach for the 40th Annual Long Beach Grand Prix! See some of your favorite celebrities and Indy car racers compete in this weekend long event. Take the Blue Line to Downtown Long Beach and walk south down Pine Avenue to access the race and festivities.

Ticket prices vary. The event is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.

For other great event ideas for the weekend, check out our Go Metro Weekends post every Friday! And don’t forget, for more route and system information call 323.GO.METRO or use Trip Planner.

 

Take the Expo Line to L.A. K-Pop Festival on Saturday

Whether you’re planning on attending the Festival of Books (go Metro to save 10% on festival merch!) or the L.A. K-Pop Festival, there’s no question the Expo Line is the way to go.

The free K-Pop Festival takes place on Saturday, April 12 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, and both Expo/Vermont and Expo Park/USC Station will be able to drop you off at the festival’s doorstep. The festival itself–with food trucks, booths, etc.–starts at 10 a.m. and there’s a free concert in the evening. (Though free, tickets are required.) Metro will be running enhanced service on both the Blue and Expo Line to accommodate attendees to both events.

Check out videos below to see a sample of who will be performing. Don’t worry, you don’t have to understand Korean to enjoy the music!

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Metro working to improve Dodger Stadium Express after tough traffic Tuesday

As the above tweets show, the Dodger Stadium Express had a rough outing for Tuesday night’s game. A few trips before the game exceeded 75 minutes between Union Station and the ballpark.

The game, which featured a hoodie sweatshirt giveaway, drew a big crowd for a Tuesday evening with more than 53,000 in attendance according to Major League Baseball. Traffic was bad and there were two problems for the Dodger Stadium Express:

•Even with enforcement from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, many private vehicles used the bus-only lane on Sunset Boulevard — making it difficult for buses to reach the stadium in a timely manner. Even though a few citations were issued to those illegally using the lane, Metro will be working with the city of Los Angeles to improve signage and keep cars out of the bus lane. One possible solution may be to use pylons to mark off the lane.

•The other problem occurred at the Patsaouras Transit Plaza at Union Station. Crowds arrived early to take the bus to the game and ultimately — and unfortunately — two separate lines ended up forming. It was confusing and some people rightly complained. To avoid similar problems, Metro staff will be at the transit plaza two hours before game time to ensure that there is one, well-organized line for those waiting to board buses.

Please keep in mind that he Dodgers are expected to keep pulling big crowds throughout the season. Metro appreciates everyone’s patronage and the agency will try to make the bus shuttle faster and easier to use, as it has frequently been in recent seasons.

For more information on taking the Dodger Stadium Express, please click here. The bus service is free to those holding a game ticket.

Officials and a dinosaur teach drivers: How to spend less on gas

With pump prices more than $4 a gallon again and more than 50 cents a gallon higher than they were in January, Metro and the Automobile Club of Southern California today joined forces to help teach drivers how to spend less on gas. They were joined by representatives from the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, including Hunter the T. rex.

Standing on the platform of the Metro Expo/Vermont Station, with some of the finest museums in the world just steps away, Metro urged L.A. residents to maximize their spring break and summer vacation dollars by picking up a $5 Day Pass and making easy-to-reach destinations on the Metro system part of their plans.

Drivers were reminded by the Auto Club that gas prices have jumped 82 percent in the last decade while the median household income for Californians has risen just 16 percent. But the good news is that many drivers can save up to $1,000 or even $2,000 a year on fuel at today’s prices by consistently following a few good habits, including slowing down and adopting a smooth, even driving style.

For inspiration, Simon Adlam, Director of Exhibits at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, invited vacationers to explore the many new and exciting exhibits at the Natural History Museum and he brought along Hunter the T. rex to make sure everyone paid attention.