It’s not every day that you can witness 30 million dollars all in one room. But at Marconi Automotive Museum & Special Events Venue, visitors move through an extensive array of rare roadsters, muscle cars, and Formula cars valued at eight figures. After a successful, self-made career in business, founder Dick Marconi decided to give back, donating his personal collection of automobiles to create the museum. Each specimen reflects a piece of racing lore; you'll find historic racecars piloted by Keke Rosberg, Mario Andretti, and Michael Schumacher.
The museum serves a multi-purpose—to share Marconi’s glittering display of high-performance vehicles with the public, and to support local charities. Proceeds from admissions and special events at the museum go toward the Marconi Foundation for Kids, which supports Big Brothers Big Sisters and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, among other children's groups. The museum’s yearly Fight Night fundraising event draws stars such as Oscar de la Hoya and the dashboard hula dancer.
The brainchild of three wine- and beer-loving friends, The Wine Bar cultivates a refined palate with an intimate bar area serving 22 wines sourced from around the world and a menu of small, sharable plates. Tasting duos recline in cushy couches as they work through a sampling flight of wines, sniffing selections such as the Rusack ’08 chardonnay and tossing glasses of Filus ’09 malbec over their shoulders for good luck. A hardwood bar and tables polished to a mirror sheen cradle palate-cleansing appetizers, such as smoked salmon served with capers, sour cream, and crackers, and creamy spinach dip flanked by dunkable strips of warm pita. Tall, arched windows give a light-streaked view of the outdoor patio seating, lined with assorted greenery and bushes trimmed in the shape of yearning, while works by local artists and eclectic music include eyes and ears in the sensory cavalcade.
Nestled in the historic Rancho Santa Anita—a homestead originally inhabited by the Gabrieleno Tongva tribe—Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden houses wildlife and plants from all over the globe on 127 acres. Its creators opened the Arboretum in 1947 to promote environmental awareness in a sanctuary that reflects the distinct history, flora, and culture of southern California. The grounds reflect the founders' aim—hummingbirds flutter among the colorful blooms in the Grace Kallam Perennial Garden, and wildflowers, herbs, and veggies spring to life at the hands of community volunteers in the educational Garden for All Seasons. Tropical and temperate blossoms embellish the Meyberg waterfall's sun-drenched stone face and blue-gum trees stand guard in front of the Queen Anne cottage, one of several historic sites that was constructed in 1885 to encapsulate Victorian opulence. Peacocks and great egrets strut among living plant collections, which explode into flowery canopies whenever the right garden sprites are available to aid in pollination.
Members often gain exclusive access to the Arboretum's slate of events, which includes workshops, tours, and Yoga in the Garden. Summer camps reawaken brains that usually hibernate until September, and Bookworms Story Time captures attention year-round.
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The SEA Lab is a hands-on coastal science education center in Redondo Beach that offers educational field trips throughout the year to explorers of all ages.
The SEA Lab extends its learning opportunities through fun summer camp programs that highlight the local marine environment.
Art Center for Kids' imaginative programs foster creativity, problem solving, and freedom of expression in young students with a number of hands-on animation, architecture, and sculpting activities. For three hours on seven consecutive Sundays, kiddies learn the intricacies of printmaking, robot creation, T-shirt design, or building toy cars to practice nascent parallel parking skills. Sessions challenge young artists to finish pieces using the same resources available to undergraduate art students while working alongside fellow students to complete more complex projects, such as a room-wide giant doodle masterpiece in the Big Draw class. Upon completion of the course, artists take home their works to hang on the fridge or in the family Louvre.
If Seuss blew balloons, they'd look something like the creations at Balloon Celebration. Complete with starbursts, tubes, and balloons twisting inside of balloons with bright latex blossoms, every sculptured balloon bouquet is customized to the client's liking. Mix and match 50 different species of balloon in 80 different shades of color to convey any message of your choosing.