Latest News
Showing posts with label Featured Stories. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Featured Stories. Show all posts

News from The Friends and Ballona Wetlands Conservancy:

Last Monday, several City of Los Angeles departments and agencies came together for a long-awaited comprehensive cleanup to remove debris and hazardous materials on Jefferson Blvd at the Freshwater Marsh.

More than 19 tons of debris was removed, including 200 + lbs of toxic and hazardous materials and dozens of needles. LAHSA and St Joseph’s offered housing to every person dwelling in the encampment.

This effort was no small feat. The Friends and Ballona Wetlands Conservancy invested thousands of hours to find solutions to protect and repair the Freshwater Marsh.

Special thanks to Councilwoman Traci Park and her team. We look forward to the day when wildlife will not be endangered, and public access can return to the Ballona Freshwater Marsh. To read more about the comprehensive cleanup, see thier latest blog post: The Freshwater Marsh Comprehensive Cleanup - A Step In The Right Direction

The absolutely insane back story of Grind King Trucks. It's a story of success, failure, wealth, power, drug dealers, murder, and so much more.

The 29th Annual Venice surf-A-Thon was a great success!

We had over 60 athletes signed up, and we completed our event in perfect conditions but small waves!

After everything was all said and done, we had a surplus that we are donating to 2 charities, the first charity we have dontated to is Casa Del Pastor.

Casa Del Pastor is a home in Baja California, Mexico for women and their children who are abandoned and abused. Its goal is to minister to their spiritual needs while helping with their physical needs.

These was an online donation, but we decided to create this checks to commemorate this day!

The Venice Surf-A-Thon would not have been possible with out everyone's help. Our contest sponsor's are a huge part of making the Venice Surf-A-Thon possible, please check out our list of sponsors below. Follow their Instagrams, visit their shops, buy from them, use their services, recommend them to friends, or just thank them for helping out with the Venice Surf-A-Thon.

Anderson Surfboards


Baja Wey Mexican Blanket Surfboard Bags

Cow's End Cafe


Durable Goods 

Fat Sal’s - Venice Beach 

Hecho En Venice

Interiors Made Eezzy



Krillyz Backyard BBQ


Naybor Hoodiez

Rodeo Show

Sandborn Swim 

Santa Monica Pride Plumbing

Shacked Mag 

Sister Betsy's Surf Wax 

Six12 Media


Venice Brand

Venice Cannabiz

Venice Pier Project

Venice Street Wear

Venice Surf Shack

The Venice Whaler

Yoga Nest Venice

And a huge thanks again to Ger-I Lewis for trusting us with your contest!

For more info, visit the Casa Del Pastor website.

Integrity. The first of LA County Lifeguard Departments Core Values. Lifeguard Captain, Julio Rodriguez has exemplified integrity throughout his career. In this video he shares how he views integrity and why it remains so central to having a long successful career.

I was there, saw the whole thing.

A couple of things to dispel and set straight. First off myself and about 100 other people ran towards the plane as we saw it going down. So the idea no one went to help is false, we all went to help.

The landing attempt was excellent, but as soon as it touched down on the sand the front wheel dug into the sand and the plane flipped over and slammed into the ground, this all happened in about 3 seconds.

As everyone was running towards the plane the lifeguard truck blew past us and was first on the scene. The lifeguards extracted the unconscious man in about four minuets and then the other man. The unconscious man was placed in the back of a lifeguard truck and transported to the boardwalk where an ambulance was waiting. As he was being transported CPR was attempted and continued for a few minuets at the ambulance but there was no luck and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

I imagine this wasn’t reported instantly as the authorities had to inform the family of the victim. As this has now been publicly reported I am posting this now.

The other man was conscious but in total shock. That had him sitting In the back of another lifeguard truck. Once they did a preliminary check of him he was transported.

Myself and all the other bystanders that were close were pushed back by the police who arrived about 2 minuets after the lifeguards.

The whole thing was crazy (surreal seeing a plane come down in front of me), amazing (the pilot landing on a spot where there were no people on a fairly crowded beach) and very sad (a man lost his life). I imagine his general age had the most to do with it. The plane slammed down extremely hard.

Radio transmission from the pilot of the airplane to Santa Monica Airport tower right before the plane crash landed on the beach.

About 6 minutes in take-off clearance (they changed from requesting special flight rules to right turn shoreline).

12:53 frequency change approved but 32X elects to “keep ears on” as they’re just going to Malibu and back.

14 minutes in, 32X calls up wanting to return. Tower clears them for right traffic 21, asks if they need assistance, 32X responds: “Not at this time.”

Tower is routing traffic around the Cessna as it’s inbound at 900, abeam the Palisades (around 15 minutes).

15:45: “Emergency.”Tower: Can you make the field?

“I’m going to try.

”Tower solicits and the Cessna states: Two souls on board, the engine is running very very rough.

Tower clears him left base for 3, gets traffic TF out of the way.

Comms with the Cessna drop off after about 16:30.Comes back, 17:20.

Tower: “Can you make runway 3?”

32X: “I don’t think so, I think I may have to put it on the beach.”

Tower: “Roger, landing on the beach will be at your own risk.”32X: “I wish I had another choice.”

Tower: “Wind 230 at 4.”

Starts coordinating with Police 29.19:45 FD, EMT, PD already on scene where the Cessna stopped, 400' south of the pier.

From Santa Monica Close Up:

"A single-engine Cessna airplane crash landed at Santa Monica Beach on Thursday, December 22, 2022. Los Angeles Lifeguards and Santa Monica Firefighters extricated the two occupants and transported both to a local hospital. Their condition is unknown. The plane took off from Santa Monica Airport. "

Santa Monica Close Up is a photo blog by Santa Monica based Photojournalist/Press photographer Fabian Lewkowicz. Fabian is the former staff photographer for the Santa Monica Daily Observer Press, Santa Monica Mirror, Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Corsair.

Support Santa Monica Closeup/Fabian Lewkowicz with Venmo or PayPal to help earn money to make these videos:

This weekend a "SAVE THE VENICE LIFEGUARD TOWER" petition started being share on Twitter and Facebook. Here is what the petition says:

"Without notice to the Venice community, LA County lifeguards, ocean ecologists or beachgoers, the LA County Department of Beaches and Harbors plans to demolish the iconic Venice Lifeguard Tower and leave our beach with the surrounding nondescript eyesore single story building.

The Tower provides a phenomenal and unmatched expansive view of the entire Santa Monica Bay. If destroyed, it could never be replaced. It has been the pride of our lifeguards for the past 50 years. The County has disregarded the Tower's unique outstanding qualities, its history, the scarcity of public buildings in Venice and has failed to consider alternative uses.

We are asking for the opportunity to evaluate repurposing the Tower for use as a public venue such as a Lifeguard Oceans Museum. Private not-for-profit funds are available.

Repurposing the Lifeguard Tower as a community asset would create an exceptional cultural, environmental and educational venue for everyone, young and old, residents and visitors, to enjoy.

Initiative of: Adjacent neighbors, LA County lifeguards, Venice Oceanarium, Dept of Historic Resources, and Venice Neighborhood Council Preserving Public Places Committee."

No other information about this is avalaible. The petition closes with this statement:


Which is good. Due to one of the above mentioned organizations having a current board member who was previously caught stealing donated funds of over $9,000. So please be careful of any donatations you make to causes like this.

To visit the petition page or to sign the petition, Click Here

You can now register online for the 29th Annual Venice Surfathon!

Save $5 on the contest entry by registering online. It is going to be $30 to register at the beach on the day of the contest. It is just $25 to register online, plus you get to reserve a contest t-shirt in the size you want!

For more info and to register, Click Here

In October 2022, The Ocean Cleanup deployed the USA's first Interceptor in Ballona Creek, LA County. Here’s a look behind the scenes at how this deployment was brought to life as crew members, municipal leaders, and partners share their reactions.

See how Interceptor 007 came to be stationed in California and hear first-hand the hopes of residents for how The Ocean Cleanup’s intervention can improve their environment.

The Ocean Cleanup's Interceptor 007 is up and running in Ballona Creek. Facing the first major rain event of its deployment, Interceptor 007 successfully extracted plastic and other debris to full capacity - all waste that would otherwise be heading for the Pacific Ocean right now.

The Ocean Cleanup will continue to optimize Interceptor 007 during its pilot project over the next two storm seasons. The first steps deal with minor leakage and catch management issues to increase efficiency and keep even more plastic out of the Pacific.

For more info, Click Here

Video recap of the 2022 Haunted Heats, featuring all the costume performance, some surfing, and the awards ceremony.

Held by ZJ Boarding House, this Halloween contest is part surfing, part costume performance.

Check out the all the photos in our 2022 Haunted Heats Photo Gallery, this Halloween contest

Here's our photo coverage of the Haunted Heats Surf COntest.

This set of surf photos was shot by Six12 Media.

These are just a few of the 300+ photos from the contest. If you were in it, you probably got some shots, probably multiple photos, they will be in the complete contest photo gallery, check them out, the link to the complete gallery is down below.

As always wijth the Haunted Heats. the costume performance portion is first. Every contestant has 30 seconds to act out their costume.

Then comes the surfing portion of the contest.

You can find all the photos from the contest, all full size and in high-resolution, in this photo gallery:

ZJ Boarding House Haunted Heats 2022 Photo Gallery

If you were out there, we probably got some cool surfing shots of you, go check them out!

Wanna see photos from previous days at this and other local surf spots from this photographer?
Click Surf Spot Galleries and look for the spot and then the date.