L.A. City Council votes to limit e-cigarette use in public spaces

Earlier today, the Los Angeles City Council voted to ban the use of e-cigarettes in bars, nightclubs, restaurants and other public places where conventional smoking is prohibited. This means – whether you agree with the ban or not – “vaping” or use of electronic smoking devices would also be prohibited on Metro.

There’s a lot of back and forth on whether second-hand vapor is harmful to others, and if so, to what degree. Personally, I’m not a fan of e-cigarettes — just because you’re not breathing out smoke doesn’t mean you’re not blowing smells at me. (And Metro’s Code of Conduct also has a section on odors.)

If signed into law by Mayor Eric Garcetti, the measure would take effect in 30 days. In the meantime, vaping is not encouraged on board Metro or inside Metro stations. You may not be cited by LASD (or you might if the odor is strong enough) but at a minimum you will be asked to be mindful of the other passengers around you and kindly asked to stop. j

Metro Rail gate latching continues this week

Gate latching on the Metro Rail system continues this week as the Mariposa, Aviation and Hawthorne stations on the Green Line are schedule to be latched on Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 6 a.m. Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies are providing advance notification and patron assistance at the three stations beginning today through Friday, March 7 between the hours of 6 to 9 a.m. and 4 to 6 p.m.

Metro plans to latch the remaining Green Line stations by the end of May. On January 29, the Marine, Douglas and El Segundo Green Line stations were latched. All Metro Red/Purple, Blue and Gold Line stations equipped with gates are now latched. Once all latching is complete, 41 of 80 Metro Rail stations will be latched and turnstiles will not allow entry unless a TAP card with appropriate fare has been tapped at the gate.

TAP is a universal fare media that allows passengers to seamlessly transfer between rail and bus without having to dig into pockets or purses for change. Twelve agencies are currently part of the TAP network including Metro, Metrolink, Los Angeles Department of Transportation (including DASH buses), Access, Antelope Valley, Culver City, Foothill, Gardena, Montebello, Norwalk, Santa Clarita and Torrance.  By the end of 2014, a total of 26 agencies will be part of the TAP network including Long Beach Transit and Santa Monica Big Blue Bus.

Go Metro to the Abilities Expo this weekend

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The annual Abilities Expo began today and despite the adverse weather conditions, plenty of folks still showed to check out the products and services available for the community of people with disabilities, their families, caregivers, seniors and healthcare professionals.

The Abilities Expo takes place in the West Hall of the L.A. Convention Center and is open today until 5 p.m. Hours on Saturday are 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and on Sunday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. The expo is free to the public. To get to the convention center, take the Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station or the Silver Line to Figueroa/Pico. Check Trip Planner for more routes and connections.

Metro is participating with an information booth, and bus operators who scored high in the wheelchair securement competition of the Metro Bus Roadeo will be there to meet people and answer questions. There are also wheelchair experts ready to attach straps and pre-mark wheelchairs for bus securement, all free of charge.

All of Metro’s buses and trains are ADA accessible and Metro currently boards more than 80,000 wheelchair passengers per month. Metro offers reduced fares to passengers with disabilities. Riders with current Access Service ID cards may ride Metro Bus and Rail at no cost.

Go Metro Weekends Feb 28 − Mar 2

"The Agility and Audacity of Juanito Apinani in the Ring at Madrid," Francisco Goya, plate 20 of The Bullfight series.

“The Agility and Audacity of Juanito Apinani in the Ring at Madrid,” by Francisco Goya, print 20 of The Bullfight series. Unflinching Vision: Goya’s Rare Prints is at the Norton Simon for one final weekend. Get there on Metro Gold Line.

We made it to Friday Source Readers!

Whether your plans involve sports, arts and culture, delicious food, good music, Oscar glory, or letting loose for Carnival, Metro can get you there without the hassles of traffic, parking, or a trip to the pump. So have fun and Go Metro this weekend! Just remember the Red Line Hollywood/Highland Station will be closed this Sunday; trains will be bypassing the station due to Oscar event security. (We still love you little gold guy!)

Friday

You’ve seen the Best Picture nominees, now’s your chance to see the Oscar-nominated, live-action and animated short films of 2014 at the Egyptian Theatre. Live-action films begin at 7:30 p.m., animated at 9:30 p.m. Tickets range from $7-11. (Metro Red Line to Hollywood/Highland Station, Metro Rapid 780 or Bus 156/656 to Hollywood/Highland, or Bus 212/312, 217, or 222 to Hollywood/Las Palmas.)

Join 94.7 The WAVE’s Smooth Night Out at the Nokia Theatre. Concert lineup includes Toni Braxton, Eric Benet, and SWV. Shows starts 7:30 p.m., tickets start at $49. (Metro Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station.)

Saturday

Rain or shine, the Chinese American Museum presents the 13th Annual Lantern Festival at El Pueblo de Los Angeles, featuring performers, lion dancers, martial artists, entertainers, arts and crafts specialists, museum tours, and food trucks offering Chinese and Taiwanese snacks and beverages. The festival lasts from 12 p.m. – 10 p.m. and is free to all. Save 10% on museum memberships and/or your museum store purchase with valid TAP card. (Metro Red/Purple/Gold Line to Union Station, Metro Bus 96 to Spring/Cesar Chavez.)

In the world of L.A. sports, the Kings take on the Carolina Hurricanes at 1 p.m. while the Clippers play the New Orleans Pelicans at 7:30 p.m. at the Staples Center. Ticket prices vary. As always, save 10% on official merchandise at the L.A. Clippers Team Store and the L.A. Kings Team Store with valid TAP card. (Metro Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station.)

Celebrate the beginning of Carnival in Brazil and around the world at The 14th Annual Brazilian Carnaval party at Club Nokia. This year’s celebration is futbol themed in honor of the 2014 World Cup! Party from 8 p.m. – 2 a.m., all ages welcome, tickets range from $45-67 (if bought online in advance). (Metro Red/Purple Line to 7th/Metro, Metro Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station, Metro Silver Line to Figueroa/12th.)

The Wild Honey Orchestra Beatles Tribute at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre is not your average Beatles tribute. That’s because the “orchestra” is made up of power-pop potentates, including The Bangles, Matthew Sweet, Denny Laine, Jody Stephens, The Muffs, Colin Hay, The Three O’Clock, Louise Goffin, Tommy Keene, Keith Allison, John Wicks, Rob Laufer, Darian Sahanaja, Kristian Hoffman and others, who will perform full-length renditions of Revolver and Abbey Road. Show starts 8 p.m., tickets start at $25. (Metro Purple Line to Wilshire/Western Station and walk about 20 minutes west on Wilshire Blvd., Metro Bus 20 to Wilshire/Lucerne, or Metro Rapid 720 to Wilshire/Crenshaw and walk about 10 minutes west on Wilshire.)

Sunday

Dress to impress and celebrate the Academy Awards in style at the first ever Oscar-viewing party: “Hollywood’s Biggest Night” at the Million Dollar Theatre. Event starts 4 p.m., tickets are $20 – pre-order tickets online to ensure a spot! (Metro Red/Purple Line to Pershing Square Station, or various downtown Metro Rapid and local buses.)

Yemen Blues plays the Sephardic Music Festival at Cal State LA’s Luckman Fine Arts Complex. Fronted by acclaimed vocalist Ravid Kahalani, the group performs the music of Yemen and West Africa with funk, mambo, soul, and ancient chanting styles. Performance begins 7 p.m., tickets start at $15, but Metro riders can save 20% with valid TAP card. (Metro Silver Line to Cal State LA Busway Station.)

All Weekend

It’s the last weekend to see Unflinching Vision: Goya’s Rare Prints at the Norton Simon Museum. Go see why historians call him the world’s first truly modern artist. Exhibition hours are 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., general admission is $10, seniors $7, students free. (Metro Gold Line to Memorial Park Station.)

Friday Five: Insta-roundup, Feb. 21

Welcome to Friday Five, a weekly roundup of five transit pics we’re loving on Instagram. Want to be featured? Tag @MetroLosAngeles on Instagram to get our attention and follow us for more fun transit photos.

[View the story "Friday Five: Insta-roundup, Feb. 21" on Storify]

Go Metro Weekends, Feb. 21 – 23

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From last year’s Firecracker 5/10K in Chinatown. Don’t miss out on this great event! Photo: experienceLA

Welcome to another edition of Go Metro Weekends, where as always we try to keep your bellies, wallets and weekends full.

Friday

MADTv Stand Up will be taking place at I.O West! Some of the show’s alums will be hitting the stage at 8 p.m. to perform original stand up sets. Tickets start at $10. (Metro Red Line to Hollywood/Vine Station, walk a block and a half west on Hollywood Blvd.)

Old school hip hop fans rejoice! Big Daddy Kane will be live at House Of Blues Sunset and he’s bring some friends along. Show starts at 10 p.m. and is 18+. Tickets are $30. (Metro Bus 2 to Sunset/Kings)

Saturday

The Kibbutz Dance Company will be performing at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex located at Cal State LA. Use your TAP card to save 20% on tickets! Show starts at 8 p.m  with tickets ranging from $44 to $64.50 (Metro Silver Line to Cal State LA Station)

International Space Station Day is taking place at the California Science Center. The event is free and you can use your TAP Card to receive $2 off adult tickets to IMAX showings! The Science Center is open daily from 10 a.m to 5 p.m. (Metro Expo Line to Expo Park/USC Station)

Sunday

Crossoads Kitchen hosts chef Adam Fleischman of Umami Burger for Sunday Supper. There are three seatings: 5, 7 and 9 p.m. The menu is $45 per person. Reservations are recommended. (Metro Bus 10 to Melrose/Harper)

The USC School of Cinematic Arts is hosting a “Freaks and Greeks” series retrospective. This week, they’re up to episodes 5-9. Admission is free and open to the public. There’s also going to be a panel discussion with some of the cast and crew, and free refreshments! The event takes place in the Eileen Norris Cinematic theater in Frank Sinatra Hall at 2 p.m. (Metro Expo Line to Expo Park/USC Station)

Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre/Frank Sinatra Hall  2 p.mFree admission (Expo Line to USC/Expo Park)

All Weekend

What better way to get out of the house and get active than the annual Chinatown Firecracker 5/10K! The 5K takes place both Saturday and Sunday. Register online and save $3 on registration when you enter the promotional code GOMETRO. Registered participants who show their valid TAP card can receive free bag check-in service.(Metro Gold Line to Chinatown Station)

Go Metro to the Long Live LA screening and panel discussion

FORM OF ABUSE by Yoshua Okón from Freewaves on Vimeo.

It’s no secret that public transportation helps people live healthier, longer lives. Use of public transit encourages a more active and fit lifestyle that includes walking or bicycling, and it can also link a community to fresh food.

And now there’s another connection between public transportation and health as the Los Angeles media arts organization Freewaves launches “Long Live LA,” a program that harnesses the creativity of artists to engage, educate, and inspire people to live healthier lifestyles with videos addressing critical public health issues that will air on Transit TV. A total of 35 videos will air on Transit TV now through March 31, covering topics ranging from obesity to mental health to lead exposure.

If you’d like to view the collection of short films all in one go, you can attend the free screening of “Live Long LA” on Thursday, Feb. 20 at ForYourArt on 6020 Wilshire Boulevard. The evening will feature a panel discussion about how artists can contribute to the public dialogue about health and inspire people to embrace healthier lifestyles. All are welcome to attend. To get to ForYourArt, hop on the Metro Rapid 720 to Wilshire/Fairfax.

Speed Dating on the Red Line: the photos and the video!

First, a huge thank you from everyone at Metro to those who participated in today’s first-ever (first annual?) Speed Dating on the Red Line event!

Above are some of the photos I grabbed while riding back and forth between DTLA and NoHo. Hope you enjoy. Click on a photo to see a larger version. Thanks go to Mark Clifford for the color photos. And thanks to Rich Morallo of Metro for the video that is below.

There was a lot of media on hand; I’ll add links to the videos and stories as they go online.

To those who speedily dated today, how was the event? Meet anyone interesting? Meet anyone not so interesting? Feedback please, people!

Happy Anna Howard Shaw Day…now show how you LoveMetroLA!

Whether you hope to find love while Speed Dating on the Red Line or you’ve already got your Valentine’s weekend planned, you can all participate in the LoveMetroLA Instagram Photo Contest!


Participate in LoveMetroLA Instagram photo contest for a chance to win great prizes from some of Metro’s Destination Discounts partners! The contest will be open from 8 a.m. today to 8 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 16. Here’s how to play:

  1. Follow @metrolosangeles on Instagram
  2. Take a selfie of you + your Val/Pal/Galentine on a Metro bus, train or station
  3. Post it to your Instagram (make sure your profile is public!)
  4. Tag @metrolosangeles and #LoveMetroLA

Multiple submissions are allowed. Contest closes at 8 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 16; submissions posted after 8 p.m. will not be accepted.

A total of five winners – first through fifth place – will be selected by a panel ofMetro employee judges. Photos will be judged on the following criteria: inclusion of Metro space (showing the bus, train or station), composition, and application of LoveMetroLA theme. Please be mindful of Metro’s customer code of conductand photo guidelines.

Winners will be announced the week following the contest. For the official contest rules, click here.

PRIZES

  • Grand Prize: Two (2) tickets to Paul Taylor Dance Company performance at The Music Center for either April 11, 12 OR 13, valued at $250.
  • 1st Runner Up: Two (2) Amtrak tickets from Los Angeles to either San Diego OR Santa Barbara, valued at $184 and $152 respectively.
  • 2nd Runner Up: Two (2) VIP tickets to Angel City Derby Girls, valued at $47.
  • 3rd Runner Up: $22 gift certificate to Primera Taza Coffee House.
  • 4th Runner Up: $15 gift certificate to Flour+Tea.

Go Metro Weekends, Feb 14 − 16

This weekend, so much is happening around Los Angeles that the question really isn’t “What to do this weekend?” but “How to do it all?” or, more realistically, “What to leave OFF the list?”

Japan's remote Koi-Yamagata station, recently redesigned in the name of love

Japan’s remote Koi-Yamagata station, recently redesigned in the name of love

Some questions you won’t have to ask: “How am I getting there?” and “How much time will I spend driving around in circles looking for parking until I completely lose it?” If you’re going to any of the following events, Metro’s got you covered. No circling. We promise.

Friday

Grand Park’s Gotta Funky Sole: Lover’s Edition. Friday from 8 p.m. – 1 a.m. Saturday, FREE. Whether out on a date or out with friends, dancing is a great bet for a happy Valentine’s Day. Enjoy live and DJed funk and soul music, and bring some cash for food trucks, flowers, sweets, or drinks. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Civic Center/Grand Park Station, or Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station.)

Casablanca at the Egyptian Theatre. Movie starts 7:30 p.m., tickets $7-11. Catch this oft-quoted, classic film that speaks to the lovestruck and lovelorn alike on the big screen. (Metro Red Line to Hollywood/Highland Station, Metro Rapid 780 or Bus 156/656 to Hollywood/Highland, or Bus 212/312, 217, or 222 to Hollywood/Las Palmas.)

David Leibman, John Beasley, Dave Robaire, and Jonathan Pinson at the Blue Whale live jazz + art space. Music starts 9 p.m., $20. This quartet of contemporary jazz masters in the Blue Whale’s intimate bar/lounge will give you that tingle down your spine only great jazz can produce. Tickets are first come first served, and doors open at 8 p.m., so arrive early to ensure a spot–especially given this Friday is Valentine’s Day! (Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station.)

Valentine’s Day Special at NerdMelt Showroom, Meltdown Comics. Event begins 7:45 p.m., $8 in advance, $10 at door. This outrageous storytelling show will feature tales by Andy Dick, Guy Branum, Alice Wetterlund, Lauren Ashley Bishop, Bryan Cook, and Ian Karmel. Free drinks and Valentine’s Day mixer after event. Plus, your TAP card saves you 10% on store purchases! (Metro Bus 2/302 to Sunset/Gardner, or walk approximately 20 minutes from Metro Red Line Hollywood/Highland Station.)

Saturday

“Ride for Love” with the East Side Riders Bike Club, supported by Metro and C.I.C.L.E. Ride meets 9:30 a.m., FREE. Meet at the Watts Labor Community Action Committee center (10950 S. Central Avenue, Los Angeles); the ride will leave promptly at 10 a.m. (Metro Blue Line to 103rd Street/Watts Towers Station, Metro Green Line to Avalon Station, or Metro Bus 53, 55, 117, 120, 202, 355, or Dash Watts.)

Sunday

L.A. Zine Fest 2014 at Helms Bakery. Event from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., FREE. Get a free Zine when you show your TAP card at the information table while supplies last. (Metro Expo Line to Culver City Station, then walk approximately seven minutes east on Venice Blvd.)

Tom Zoellner signs and discusses Train: Riding the Rails That Created the Modern World–From the Trans-Siberian to the Southwest Chief at Book Soup. Event begins 4 p.m., FREE. “From the frigid trans-Siberian railroad to the antiquated Indian Railways to the futuristic MagLev trains, Train presents both an entertaining history of railway travel around the world while offering a serious and impassioned case for the future of train travel.”–Yup, we like! (Metro Bus 2/302, 30/330, or 105 to San Vicente/Sunset, or Metro Bus 4 to Santa Monica/Hancock, then walk approximately eight minutes north on Hancock and three minutes west on Holloway Drive to Sunset Blvd.)

Harlem Globetrotters “Fans Rule” Tour at the Staples Center. Performances at 12:30 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. Show your valid TAP card or use promo code METRO when purchasing tickets online and save $5. (Metro Blue/Expo Line to Pico Station.)

All Weekend

Thomas Woodruff “Legends of the Mysterious Rocks” at Mark Moore Gallery. Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. both days, FREE. This Friday and Saturday are the last days to see new paintings by this amazing New York-based artist known for his scientific precision and fantastical storytelling. Woodruff’s website gives a taste of his exquisite style and magical subject matter, but don’t miss it in person! (Metro Expo Line to La Cienega/Jefferson Station, then walk approximately 12 minutes north on Fairfax to W. Washington Blvd.)

Pasadena International Film Festival. If you’re planning on attending the festival this weekend, why not Go Metro and save on parking? For information about films, venues, and tickets check out the festival website. (Metro Gold Line to Memorial Park Station.)

Big Screen Olympic coverage at the Paley Center for Media. Do the Sochi games currently have you glued to the T.V.? Watch the 2104 Winter Olympics larger than life at the Paley Center for Media. Coverage starts at 12 p.m. on various days through Sun, Feb. 23. Free with general admission ticket. (Metro Rapid 704, Metro Bus 4 or 14/37 to Santa Monica/Canon, Metro Bus 16/316 to S. Santa Monica/Canon, or Metro Rapid 720 to Wilshire/Beverly and walk northwest about 8 minutes to destination.)

“James Brown: Get on the Good Foot, a Celebration in Dance” at the L.A. Music Center. Shows at 7:30 p.m. Friday – Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. Show your valid TAP card and save 20% on select seats. You can also purchase your tickets online and use promo code 23713. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Civic Center/Grand Park Station.)