May 31, 2021

Photo Essay: The Former Fox Movie Palace in UCLA's Backyard

It's one of those LA places I'd passed by all the time—but never made enough of an effort to go inside. 


May 26, 2021

What's the Fate of L.A.'s First Major Flower Market, Now Located in the Biggest Floral District in the U.S.?

Just over two blocks away from Downtown Los Angeles' Santee Alley in the Fashion District is a wholesale flower market known as the Southern California Flower Market—which takes up nearly 4 acres between Wall Street and Maple Avenue and East 7th and 8th Streets. 

As of October 2019, the plan was to rebuild a good chunk of it as part of a mixed-use complex right in the middle of the Los Angeles Flower District—the largest and most successful wholesale floral district in the country.

What's the plan for the independent wholesaler and retailers that are housed there—not only florists, but also floral suppliers, floral related retail shops, and small flower malls?

No one has made any public promises. 

But since 2020 happened, the developer has been silent about its plans for the historic market. 

May 23, 2021

Photo Essay: Twice Around the 105-Year-Old #1 Special at the Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum

Despite having grown up in Syracuse, New York, I hadn't been to the Buffalo area since I was 5 years old, when my family visited my uncle in the town of Lockport and crossed the border into Canada to visit Niagara Falls and Marineland. 

So, last week, after having flown in an airplane for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic to visit Syracuse for the first time in years, I decided to avoid a layover at JFK Airport and fly direct into Buffalo-Niagara Airport—conveniently located near a bucket-list attraction for me, the Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum in the town of North Tonawanda. 

May 10, 2021

Photo Essay: Carhopping the Sunset Strip at Mel's (Formerly Ben Frank's)

During pandemic lockdowns, Mel's Drive-In on the Sunset Strip was a godsend...

 circa 2020

May 08, 2021

The Radiance of Judson Studios' Art Glass Lights Up Forest Lawn Museum

The coffee table book Judson: Innovation in Stained Glass was published on March 17, 2020—less than a week after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. 

Its release was supposed to coincide with "Judson Studios: Stained Glass from Gothic to Street Style," an exhibit at Forest Lawn Museum in Glendale, California that was scheduled to open on April 23, 2020. 

May 06, 2021

Citizen Public Market Serves New Food Hall Fare In Historic Digs

One of the first landmarked buildings of Culver City, California has just gotten new life as a trendy new food hall. 

May 05, 2021

Photo Essay: Hollywood's Newest Historic Movie Theatre, at the American Legion (Updated)

[Last updated 6/12/21 9:40 PM PT—projection booth photos added at bottom]

The American Legion Hollywood Post 43 has been nicknamed the "Post of the Stars." 

That's not just because of its current Tinseltown location—but also because it was originally chartered in 1919 by Hollywood luminaries who'd returned from World War I. 

Past post members have included stars like Clark GableGene Autry, Mickey Rooney, Ronald Reagan, Charlton Heston, and more.

May 04, 2021

From Sunset Boulevard to Deepwell Estates: William Holden's Modernist Palm Springs Home

In the song "Tom's Diner," Suzanne Vega sings of reading a newspaper in which "There's a story/Of an actor/Who had died/While he was drinking/He was no one/I had heard of." 

Vega confirmed later she'd written those lines about actor William Holden—the Oscar-winning star of Sunset BoulevardStalag 17Network—who died in 1981 from bleeding to death after falling while drunk. 

He was living in Santa Monica then—but before that, he was a denizen of Palm Springs. 

And last month, Modernism Week opened up the former "William Holden Estate" for tours.*

*no photos were permitted inside   

May 03, 2021

Photo Essay: Dining and Drinking with Snow White on Hollywood Boulevard [Updated for 2024]

[Last updated 6/23/24 3:07 PM PT—Photos posted to Facebook on 6/22 show the interior of the Snow White Cafe being gutted. 

Have the murals been removed to be preserved? Will they be returned? Or have they been/will they be destroyed? I have an email out to the business to find out, but it doesn't look good.

A search via the Los Angeles Department of Buildings and Safety online database of records shows a permit for "Change of use from Restaurant to Candy Store. Interior tenant improvement in existing shell building." A zoning plan check was completed on 6/10/24.

Here's my photo essay from 2021, below.]

In the middle of Hollywood Boulevard... the "center of it all" at Hollywood and Highland, next to the Hollywood Wax Museum...

...there's the unassuming storefront of the Snow White Cafe, "where your problems dwarf."