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Essential California: A day to remember the fallen

Good morning. It is Monday, May 25. The L.A. County Museum of Art has free admission today for Memorial Day. Here's what else is happening in the Golden State:


TOP STORIES

Honoring fallen troops

Memorial Day is Monteen Purdie’s 100th birthday, and she will spend the day visiting her son’s grave at the Los Angeles National Cemetery in Westwood. He was killed in Vietnam in 1968. “She rested her hand against her cheek, remembering the short stubble of David’s beard as he kissed her goodbye before boarding his flight to Vietnam with chocolate chip cookies she had baked just for him.” Los Angeles Times

Final moments

BASE jumper Dean Potter’s senses were so attuned that he could sense the smallest disturbance around him. One week after his death, footage shows just what happened when he made his final jump in Yosemite. Los Angeles Times

 

DROUGHT

Rethinking an old plan: Despite its awful nickname, it may be time for Californians to adopt “toilet to tap,”  a procedure that purifies sewage water until it’s clean enough to drink. Los Angeles Times 

Irrigating lawns: Water officials agree Californians need to cut back their water usage more than 25%, but just what is the most effective way to do that when it comes to lawns and golf courses? For starters, don’t irrigate with drinking water. Daily News

Landscaping upheaval: Ripping out more than 5 million square feet of turf in Orange County has upended the landscaping industry. “The landscape companies that make it through to the other side of this drought are likely to be the specialists that market their ability to install and maintain drought-tolerant landscapes.” Orange County Register

Ripping out turf: Demand for turf-replacement rebates has shot through the roof. The Metropolitan Water District, which budgeted $100 million for the program, has received more than $330 million in requests. Los Angeles Times

 

L.A. AT LARGE

Political relationships: The Los Angeles City Council’s newest member won by running as an outsider. Observing how the relationship between David Ryu and council President Herb Wesson, the consummate insider, will grow is likely to be one of the most intriguing storylines out of City Hall this year. Los Angeles Times 

Roman Catholics celebrate: In MacArthur Park, Salvadorans celebrated the beatification of Archbishop Oscar Romero, who was assassinated 35 years ago as he performed a Mass. Romero was known for his work with the poor. Los Angeles Times

Creating an experience: Developer Rick Caruso likes to borrow elements from Hollywood when he builds a  shopping mall, whether it’s seeking advice from studio chiefs or stocking up on studio lights. “Market share is interesting and important. But what's more important is 'heart share,' the emotional connection,” Caruso says. Hollywood Reporter

Courtroom art: As one of the last courtroom sketch artists in Los Angeles, it’s Mona Shafer Edwards’ job to capture the spirit of defendants, attorneys and judges. Los Angeles Times

 

POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT

Importing trash: Orange County imports an unusual product -- garbage. Last year, the county took in 1.37 million tons of trash from neighboring counties. The business nets $17 million a year, which is used to pay off the county’s bankruptcy debt. Daily Pilot

Airport pickups: Airport officials in San Diego believe it could be just a matter of weeks before Uber and Lyft drivers are able to pick up passengers at the airport. One hiccup, however -- drivers would have to get passengers from the short-term parking lots. Curbside pickup appears to be a non-starter. San Diego Union-Tribune

 

CRIMES AND COURTS

Made for TV: The kidnapping of San Diego County teenager Hannah Anderson was so dramatic it was made into a “Lifetime” movie. But Anderson and her family are furious that the television movie suggests there was a relationship between the teen and her abductor. San Diego Union-Tribune

Drug discovery: A cellphone stolen from Knott’s Berry Farm ultimately led sheriff’s deputies to an Inland Empire home with a cache of drugs and an illegal hash oil lab. Los Angeles Times

 

ENVIRONMENT

Oil spill cleanup: Environmental groups are urging cleanup crews not to use dispersants as they repair the damage done by an oil spill off Santa Barbara. Protesters at the site also want to see an end to fracking and “extreme oil extraction.” Los Angeles Times

Treating wounded animals: A sea lion brought to SeaWorld after he was caught in the oil spill off Refugio State Beach has died. A second sea lion and an elephant seal that were rescued from the spill are being treated. Los Angeles Times

 

CALIFORNIA CULTURE

Historic preseration: A tamale is now at the heart of a preservation battle. Or rather, a tamale-shaped building. The East Los Angeles structure represents a time when architects wanted buildings to reflect what was inside, like Randy’s Donuts or Tail o' the Pup. Los Angeles Times

 

CALIFORNIA PERSPECTIVES

Limiting political dollars: In an op-ed, Dan Schnur of the USC Unruh Institute of Politics argues state Sen. President Pro Tem Kevin de León deserves credit for a ban on fundraising during state budget negotiations and the last month of the legislative session. “Those who agree that our government works best when not drowning in campaign cash owe him our gratitude,” he writes. Sacramento Bee

 

CALIFORNIA ALMANAC

In Los Angeles, it will be cloudy through the morning with temperatures reaching a high of 73 degrees. San Diego will also be cloudy with temperatures around 67 degrees. Beachgoers in Southern California should beware of strong rip currents, long currents and elevated surf.

San Francisco will have patchy fog and clouds. Temperatures are expected to be in the low 60s.

 

AND FINALLY

Really a United States of America: On this date in 1986, people held hands to try to form a chain from California to New York. It was known as Hands Across America. How many people participated? Six and a half million.

 

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints and ideas to Alice Walton or Shelby Grad.


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