Model buses now available from Metro online store!

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Model buses are now available for purchase in Metro’s online store — you can chose between an Orange Line bus or Metro 40-foot buses used on local and rapid routes.

One note: we’re aware of complaints from some readers about shipping fees. This is due to an exclusive contract that Metro’s vendor has with FedEx. Those interested in more than one item in the store should purchase them at the same time to help lower the shipping fee. We appreciate the business from those who have made purchases from the store and hope to bring you additional ways to purchase Metro items in the future!

Go Metro Weekends, August 22 – 24

Delicious pancakes and more to be had at the LA Weekly Pancake Breakfast this Sunday--a short walk from Westlake/MacArthur Park Station. Image by Janine/Flickr CC

Delicious pancakes and more to be had at the LA Weekly Pancake Breakfast this Sunday–a short walk from Westlake/MacArthur Park Station. Image by Janine/Flickr CC

From music fests to bike rides, theater, and the ultimate pancake breakfast, here’s a sampling of events to fill your weekend with fun and transit!

Friday

Foodies take note! Grand Central Market and KCRW present “Good Food’s Night Out” this Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. Good Food hostess Evan Kleiman will be there to talk with guests as they explore the market, recently named one of “America’s Best New Restaurants” by Bon Appétit. The free event includes games, music by KCRW, and expanded menus from vendors such as Horse Thief BBQ, Sticky Rice, DTLA Cheese and more. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Pershing Square Station or various Metro Rapid and local buses serving Hill Street and Broadway.)

The Young Dubliners bring their energetic, Celtic-rock sound to the Levitt Pavilion at 8 p.m. in MacArthur Park. The concert is free and seating is open on lawn chairs or blankets. Bring a picnic or enjoy concessions for purchase. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Westlake/MacArthur Park Station.)

Want to see some seriously good dancing? Look no further than the J.U.i.C.E Hip Hop Dance Festival, happening this Friday at 8:30 p.m. at the Ford Amphitheatre. This annual event celebrates the vibrancy of the urban arts landscape with a range of hip hop dance styles, spoken word, graffiti art, multimedia, film and live DJs. Arrive early for a pre-show dance battle and meet-and-greet with Mari Koda of the Step Up movie series. Tickets are $30 for adults, $12 children, and $15 students. Go Metro and save 10%. (Metro Red Line to Universal City/Studio City Station, then catch the free Ford Shuttle to the amphitheater.)

Sunday

Take your brunch plans to the next level this Sunday with the LA Weekly Pancake Breakfast 2014! Held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Legendary Park Plaza Hotel, $35 will get you 40-plus food samples and beverages from these L.A. brunch spots. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Westlake/MacArthur Park Station.)

Learn about Santa Monica’s bike infrastructure and creative centers at Tour da Arts vol. 6, sponsored by C.I.C.L.E and the Santa Monica Museum of Art. This 9-mile bike tour starts at 12 p.m. at SMMoA and includes art and performances at each stop. The ride is free, but preregistration is required. Present your TAP card at the SMMoA gift store for 10% off merchandise. (Metro Rapid 704 to Santa Monica/26th, then walk 10 minutes south on 26th Street, or Big Blue Bus 5 to Olympic EB/26th.)

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Go Metro to Tour da Arts for car free fun and save on gifts with TAP card

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Enjoy Santa Monica’s sights and sounds at Santa Monica Museum of Art’s (SMMoA) sixth annual Tour da Arts on Sunday, August 24 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. SMMoA’s cultural bicycle festival and tour is a car-free community event for riders of all ages.

The free all-day event offers art, music, performances, and sustainable transportation advocacy. The festival kicks off with a 9-mile bike ride that will stop for screenings and performances by local artists. Registration is required at SMMoA.org.

Show your valid TAP card at reception and save 10% on purchases at the SMMoA’s gift store GRACIE.

To get to SMMoA, take Metro Rapid 704 and exit at Santa Monica Boulevard and 26th Street. Enter Bergamot Station from 26th Street (the south east side of 26th Street and Olympic Boulevard). For more routes and connections, use Trip Planner.

Save up to 50 percent on any-day Los Angeles County Fair tickets with Metro

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Discover the Los Angeles County Fair–the largest county fair in the country–with Metro and Metrolink. The fair takes place from August 29 through September 28 at the Fairplex in Pomona. You’ll be able to enjoy Luminasia, a larger-than-life Chinese lantern festival, Grinding Gears dance club, live animals, a carnival with more than 70 thrilling rides and more!

Discounted tickets to the Los Angeles County Fair are available for Metro riders. Use the exclusive promo code when buying tickets online and save up to 50% on any-day fair tickets.

To get to the fair on weekends, take the Metrolink San Bernadino Line to Fairplex Station. A free shuttle will take you from there to the Yellow Gate Entrance. Metrolink is offering a late-night train service back to Los Angeles Union Station on Saturdays and Sundays while the fair is in session so you can stay and enjoy the concerts, nightclub and evening entertainment.

All San Bernardino Line weekend trains will stop at the Fairplex Station except for trains 351, 352 and 353 on Saturday and train 351 on Sunday. Take advantage of the special Metrolink weekend pass discount for trains that run to and from Union Station.

For weekday service to the fair, use the Pomona (North) Station and transfer to Foothill Transit Bus 197.

Metro will send a speaker to your class or organization this fall

Members of the Metro Speakers Bureau are available this fall to talk to your group or classroom.

Whether it’s about bike paths or rail lines, clean air or jobs at Metro, the Metro Speakers’ Bureau has it covered.

Where future jobs are concerned, Metro employs a vast array of professions and specialties, including bus and train operators, mechanics and maintenance people, clerks, bus and rail transportation and maintenance supervisors and security guards. Speakers can also address issues such as Measure R, rail construction around Los Angeles, bus lines, urban planning, security aboard buses and rail and even marketing and media relations.

If you have questions or would like to request a speaker for your organization or school, contact us at metrospeaks@metro.net.

Go Metro to FYF Fest this weekend

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FYF Fest returns to rock L.A. this Saturday and Sunday, August 23 and 24. Nearly 60 artists are scheduled to perform, including The Strokes, Phoenix, and Haim, as well as Interpol, Kalela, and Blood Orange (favorites of yours truly).

With Los Angeles Historic State Park near Chinatown now out of commission, the L.A. Sports Arena and Exposition Park are hosting the festival this time around. Luckily, getting to FYF’s new home via Metro Rail is just as easy as before. The event entrance, at 39th Street between Vermont Avenue and Bill Robertson Lane, is steps away from the Expo Line’s Expo/Vermont Station. Forget the hassle of driving and parking and go Metro for a stress-free ride to and from the concert. Show your TAP card at the FYF Info booth and you’ll receive a free water and gift while supplies last!

FYF Fest lasts from 2:30 p.m. to 12 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, August 23, Metro Rail, Orange, and Silver Lines will follow their normal, late-night Saturday schedules with service until 2 a.m. On Sunday, August 24, Metro will again run a late-night Saturday schedule for Metro Rail, Orange, and Silver Lines, extending its normal service hours so that everyone can enjoy the show and have a safe ride home. Longer, full-platform trains will be running on the Expo Line for extra capacity.

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Back to school on Metro: info on getting around, student fares and safety

The Metro System map showing all the agencies' bus and rail lines. Click above for a pdf version that allows you to zoom in on different areas.

The Metro System map showing all the agencies’ bus and rail lines. Click above for a pdf version that allows you to zoom in on different areas.

 

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The Metro Rail and Transitway map. Click above to see larger.

When I was a wee lad, no one went back to school until Labor Day had passed. These days are a different story with some kids headed back to school beginning this week.

Metro serves many schools and colleges in Los Angeles County with its 177 bus lines and nearly 16,000 bus stop locations. Metro also has five rail lines — the Red/Purple Line subway, the Blue Line, Expo Line, Gold Line and Green Line — and runs both the Orange Line busway in the San Fernando Valley and the Silver Line bus that runs between El Monte Station, downtown Los Angeles and the Harbor Gateway Transit Center in Gardena via the 10 and 110 freeways.

In other words, there are a lot of ways to get around the county for kids who both live close to school or who have their own hefty commutes. Here is some information on reduced fares, getting around the Metro system and safety:

Maps and timetables for all Metro bus and rail lines can be found here. The basic system map and rail maps are above.

•There are two online trip planners that can help you plan a transit trip: the trip planner on Metro’s home page and Google Transit.

•If you have a smartphone, go to nextbus.com for real-time bus and train arrival information. The website easily allows you to see when the next bus or train is arriving at stops/stations near your current location.

•Safety tips for all riders can be found by clicking here, including tips on how to prevent theft of cell phones and electronic devices.

•All riders — including students — should have the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department number saved in their cell phones. The number is 1.888.950.SAFE (7233).

•Metro puts out a lot of information on social media, including service alerts. Click here to subscribe to Metro’s general Twitter feed and click here to follow Metro on Facebook. Metro also has a Twitter feed that includes only service alerts. And this Metro Twitter feed has alerts on elevators that are out of service.

Here’s a nice post by one of my colleagues from last fall on the benefits of students using transit to travel to school.

FARES FOR STUDENTS K THROUGH 12

Now students can obtain a special TAP card and use it to ride at special reduced rates. These prices, which are not impacted by the Sept. 15 fare increases and changes:

30-Day Pass – $24

Single One-Way Fare – $1

The 30-Day Pass allow for unlimited rides. It’s the best deal for students who use Metro to go to school every day and for those who use Metro to travel around the area.

To apply for a Metro Student TAP Card (K-8 or 9-12), download an application: EnglishSpanish. Submit it along with all required documentation at one of Metro’s four Customer Centers (listed below). Students in grades 9-12 are required to have a valid photo ID or school ID to purchase the fares or ride with a Student TAP card.

Once you receive your new Student TAP card in the mail, you have three fare payment options:

  • If you ride every day, load your card with a Student 30-Day Pass ($24) at selected schools or any Metro Pass Sales locations (there are about 400 in Los Angeles County). You’ll get unlimited rides for 30 consecutive days.
  • If you ride occasionally, load your card with some cash; each time you board and tap, it will deduct a reduced one-way fare of $1 (bus or rail) from your card balance.
  • If you prefer, just tap your unloaded card on the farebox when you board (bus only) and pay the reduced one-way cash fare of $1.

For more information about reduced fare programs, call the Metro Reduced Fare Office at 213.680.0054.

FARES FOR COLLEGE/VOCATIONAL STUDENTS

The College/Vocational Monthly Pass is $36 currently and will be $43 when Metro’s new fares begin on Sept. 15.

To qualify for a College/Vocational discount, you must complete the College/Vocational TAP application available at select schools and Metro Customer Centers. Submit the completed application at any Metro Customer Center or mail it to the Metro Reduced Fare Office, One Gateway Plaza, MS 99-PL-4, Los Angeles, CA, 90012-2952.

Upon receipt of your college/Vocational TAP card, you can load a reduced-rate pass every month at any Metro Customer Center or area pass vendors. Undergraduate and graduate students must provide proof of enrollment in an accredited school in Los Angeles County. Undergraduate students must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 units or 12 hours of in-classroom study per week for a minimum of 3 consecutive months. Graduate students must be enrolled in a minimum of 8 units of in-classroom study per week for a minimum of 3 consecutive months.

If you are enrolled in a summer program that meets for less than 3 months and/or 12 units, you can still qualify only if you met the eligibility requirements in the preceding spring term. Download an application: English Spanish | Armenian | Cambodian Chinese | Japanese | Korean | Russian | Thai | Vietnamese

Qualified applicants may submit applications for a College/Vocational TAP card at any time during their current school term. Applications received after August 10 will receive a card that expires in March of the following year. Applications received after February 10 will receive a card that expires in October of the same year.

For questions call: Metro Reduced Fare Office 213.680.0054 Monday – Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

METRO CUSTOMER CENTERS

Union Station/Gateway Transit Center – East Portal
Gateway Plaza
Los Angeles
Monday – Friday, 6 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Photo booth Available
See Map

Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Center
3650 w. Martin Luther King Blvd., Ste 189
Los Angeles
Tuesday – Saturday , 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Photo booth Available
See Map

East Los Angeles Center
4501 B Whittier Blvd.
Los Angeles
Tuesday – Saturday , 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Photo booth Available
See Map

Wilshire/Vermont Center
3183 Wilshire Bl, Ste 174

Los Angeles
Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
(Now Open)
See Map