People and Events

<i> From staff and wire reports</i>

Lawndale is very image conscious. Only last year, the city ripped out the artificial turf along its Hawthorne Boulevard median to silence jokes that Lawndale should be renamed Astrodale.

Now, the largely blue-collar city wants to link itself with the affluent beach communities to the west. So the Lawndale City Council has voted unanimously to change the name of its share of Compton Boulevard to Marine Avenue, even though the town is landlocked.

Of course, local developers also want to disassociate the city from Compton, which has severe crime problems. Lawndale developer Jonathan Stein, who built a condominium project a few blocks from the renamed street, noted that Compton has been called “the murder capital of the world.”

Lawndale isn’t alone. The city of Paramount has already renamed part of its stretch of Compton Boulevard, and Hawthorne and Gardena are contemplating similar moves.


But some Lawndalites told the City Council that they opposed the rechristening. Nancy Marthens said the renaming amounted to “creating facades” instead of making substantial changes to solve local problems. Noting that there are Inglewood and Manhattan Beach boulevards, Steve Mino said Lawndale should name the street for itself.

The only street named Lawndale in the county, oddly enough, is in Eagle Rock.

Well, maybe Big Bear isn’t Aspen, but at least now there’s an airline flying from Los Angeles International Airport to the San Bernardino Mountain resort. Alpha Air inaugurated the only service between the two points the other day. An airport spokesman said the last airline to try that route gave up after three weeks. Alpha is trying a low-key approach. “We’re using a nine-passenger plane,” an Alpha spokesman said. “They (the previous airline) used a 19-passenger.”

(De-)Evolution of the Language: An actress at the Hollywood Christmas Parade was identified in the program as a “title roleist” in a recent television movie.


Three alleged bandits, thirsty after commandeering a car and stealing the motorist’s money in Valencia, were determined to get a drink--even after the car owner jumped out and called for help.

The bandits fled on foot to a liquor store where they tried to buy some alcoholic refreshments, said Eric Smith, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Department. But it was 5:56 a.m.

“They were told they would have to wait until 6 a.m. to legally buy liquor,” Smith said.

They obediently waited, then purchased the hooch. Helped by the delay, sheriff’s deputies nabbed the three as they returned to the street.


The flag-flap has quieted a bit in Long Beach where a judge rejected the city’s latest attempt to have Thomas (Ski) Demski found in violation of a noise ordinance for flying a 47-by-82-foot flag in front of his home.

But in West Hollywood, a renter has sued his apartment owner for forbidding him to fly a mere 3-by-5-foot flag. However, it’s a rainbow-colored “Gay Pride” banner.

The renter, John Stout, 31, admits that Venture Property Management prohibited items from being displayed on the balconies. But he said his neighbors have exhibited bird cages, bamboo curtains, brooms and even a “Dukakis for President” placard.

Threatened with eviction, Stout has temporarily removed the flag. The “Dukakis” placard is gone, too.


A new wood-carving studio on La Brea Avenue, caught up in the holiday spirit, has decorated a wooden gunslinger and a wooden Indian with Christmas boughs and placed them out front on the sidewalk. The artist/owner, who goes by the name of Blake, was asked if he was worried about someone kidnaping the figures.

“If anyone can get a 6-foot, 300-pound wooden Indian into their car while fighting me, I’d be surprised” Blake said.

Besides, the cowboy’s wearing a holster.