Metro to launch Eat Shop Play Crenshaw campaign at Taste of Soul

Metro will launch the Eat Shop Play Crenshaw campaign at tomorrow’s Taste of Soul, a free, family-friendly event on Crenshaw Boulevard between Stocker Street and Rodeo Road. Eat Shop Play Crenshaw will encourage the public to take a pledge to support local businesses.

Go Metro to the soul food, live entertainment and great shopping at Taste of Soul via the Metro Expo Line. The festival is accessible from the Expo/Crenshaw Station. And make sure to visit Metro’s Eat Shop Play Crenshaw pavilion, where businesses impacted by Crenshaw/LAX Line construction will be highlighted. Taste of Soul will take place from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Here’s the press release from Metro:

L.A. County Supervisor and Metro Board 1st Vice Chair Mark Ridley-Thomas, Metro Board member Jackie Dupont-Walker, Metro CEO Art Leahy and Taste of Soul Founder Danny Bakewell Sr. today encouraged the public to Go Metro to the Taste of Soul festival this Saturday, Oct. 18, using the Metro rail and Metro bus system. The Metro Rail Expo Line Expo/Crenshaw Station is within sight and scent of the festival’s savory delights.

At the festival, Metro will unveil a new campaign called Eat, Shop, Play Crenshaw where the public will be encouraged to take a pledge to support local businesses. The campaign will launch at the Taste of Soul in Metro’s Eat, Shop, Play Crenshaw pavilion, located at Crenshaw Boulevard and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard where merchants from the Crenshaw District who are impacted by construction of the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project will be highlighted.

“Every year, this event grows in size and popularity, building new and stronger bonds within the community. The Taste of Soul encourages hundreds and thousands of SoCal residents to support small businesses that truly are the backbone of our local economy and promotes public transit ridership to improve traffic flow,” said Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Eric Garcetti.

“Taste of Soul provides an opportunity to celebrate the rich culture and diversity in the Crenshaw District and I am pleased that this year Metro will celebrate many of the local businesses on the Boulevard who have bravely endured the challenges associated with construction of the Crenshaw Line,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas. “This event kicks off our campaign to celebrate and help these businesses through our “Eat, Shop, Play Crenshaw Campaign”.

“We all know that once the Crenshaw/LAX Project is completed, the light-rail line is going to benefit our community, in a big way, but right now it is hard on the local shops and stores,” said Metro Board member Dupont-Walker. “It’s particularly hard on the small businesses that traditionally operate on small margins. These are the mom and pop places we can turn to for the sorts of goods and services chain stores can no longer provide. It’s often where we find great deals and personal service.”

Metro also is establishing a $10 million business interruption fund that would provide eligible businesses up to $50,000 annually, not to exceed 60 percent of business revenue loss to address construction impacts along on the project alignment. However, details still are being work out. Here it’s a link to the Metro Board report:

The 9th annual Taste of Soul festival will run from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 18, on Crenshaw Boulevard between Rodeo Road and Stocker Street. It will highlight almost two miles of entertainment and delicious food. The public can also check out works by local artists all day long. The festival is expected to draw more than 300,000 people from throughout Southern California.

Metro can take you to the Crenshaw district from all over L.A. County. From the San Fernando Valley take the Orange Line to the Red Line to the Expo Line. From Long Beach travel to downtown Los Angeles on the Blue Line and transfer to the Expo Line at Pico Station. From Pasadena or East Los Angeles ride the Gold Line to Union Station and transfer to the Red/Purple Line to 7th St/Metro Center and then hop on the Expo Line. Or take the Green Line to the Blue Line to the Expo Line to the festival.

Metro will have a booth on Crenshaw Boulevard between Rodeo Place and Coliseum Street to provide information about the Crenshaw/LAX light-rail line project, which is underway and getting ready to begin excavation of the first of three underground stations along Crenshaw Boulevard. The three are on Crenshaw Boulevard at Exposition Boulevard, Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Vernon Avenue

Metro staff will be available all day Saturday to respond to questions and provide construction project information. The public is encouraged to stop by and learn more about the new light-rail project.

Representatives of Metro’s Project Labor Agreement and Construction Careers Policy will be available at the same location to provide information on how to enter the Trade Unions to work on Metro capital projects that are under construction in the region. Information on careers at Metro from bus operators to executive officers will be available, as well.

The following restaurants provided advance tastes of the Taste of Soul at Friday’s press event: Dulan’s on Crenshaw, Southern Girl Desserts, Post & Beam restaurant, Crenshaw Denny’s, Delicious Southern Cuisine, Yo Halal’s Popcorn and Crenshaw Buffalo Wild Wings.

Metro Bus Service Detours

Metro Bus lines that will be detoured during the Taste of Soul Festival include: 40, 105, 210, 705, 710 and 740. Signs in English and Spanish will be posted at bus stops regarding the temporary routes or check Metro’s Service Advisories for the latest changes.

The 8.5-mile Crenshaw/LAX Line is a $2.058 billion light-rail line that will connect the Green Line and the Expo Line. It will have eight new stations. It is expected to open in 2019.

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