Essential California: Righting wrongs in Manhattan Beach?

People on a grassy area overlooking the ocean at sunset
People gather on different levels of historic Bruce’s Beach at 26th Street and Highland Avenue in Manhattan Beach in July 2020.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Monday, March 29, and here’s a quick look at the week ahead:

With jury selection complete, the trial of Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer charged in George Floyd’s death, begins Monday in Minneapolis.

[Previously: “Minneapolis on edge as the first officer charged in killing of George Floyd goes on trial” in the Los Angeles Times]

Also Monday: With San Francisco in the orange tier, Uber will open its new San Francisco headquarters for office workers at 20% capacity on a voluntary basis. The ride-hailing company is the city’s first major office employer to return to in-person work since restrictions were loosened, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. (Many Uber drivers, however, have worked in person throughout the pandemic.)


Wednesday is Cesar Chavez Day — the birthday of the late civil rights leader and labor organizer and a state holiday in California. First Lady Jill Biden plans to visit the Forty Acres monument in Delano, which once served as the headquarters for the United Farm Workers, for a “day of action” on Wednesday.

The Major League Baseball season begins on Thursday.

Friday is Good Friday.

The NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four games are on Saturday.

Sunday is Easter.

And now, here’s what’s happening across California:

A tale of two reckonings: How should Manhattan Beach atone for its racist past? For months, Manhattan Beach has wrestled with an uncomfortable truth: The city once seized a Black family’s oceanfront resort and ran an entire community of Black beachgoers out of town. Residents have pushed back on the notion that they must atone for injustices committed almost a century ago, but a county official seeks to make restitution. Los Angeles Times


Note: Some of the sites we link to may limit the number of stories you can access without subscribing.


Hundreds of demonstrators gathered Saturday in Koreatown as part of “Stop Asian Hate” rallies held across the country. Los Angeles Times

The Echo Park homeless camp is gone. What does it mean for L.A.? Los Angeles Times

Support our journalism

Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.


The things migrants carried — and dropped — as they crossed the border. A beautiful and wrenching dispatch from the Rio Grande Valley. Los Angeles Times (Note: Times subscribers get early access to this article.)

A grid of six pictures of objects (a brush, a kid's hat, etc) photographed on desert dirt
Pieces of migrants’ lives are left behind as they cross the Rio Grande into Texas in search of U.S. asylum.
(Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)


Can California’s first Latino senator break Washington’s gridlock on immigration reform? “No state has more at stake in it than California, and that’s who I represent, so it is a top priority. I come with urgency,” Sen. Alex Padilla told The Times in an interview. Los Angeles Times

California attorney general-designee Rob Bonta is already gearing up for the 2022 election: Bonta, a Democrat from Alameda who would be California’s first Filipino attorney general, said that he is focused on campaigning for election to the post if the Legislature confirms his appointment to fill out the rest of Xavier Becerra’s term. Los Angeles Times

Dianne Feinstein becomes California’s longest-serving U.S. senator: Feinstein has been in office for 10,373 days, breaking the record set by Hiram Johnson, a former governor who took office in the Senate in March 1917 and served until his death in August 1945. Los Angeles Times


Plans for the future of Sierra and Sequoia national forests are being decided now. Here’s how last year’s Creek fire figures into those plans. Fresno Bee

“Mad rush” for COVID-19 vaccine is on for Californians ages 50 to 64 as expansion nears. All Californians ages 50 and over become eligible for vaccinations on April 1, meaning that group will have a two-week window of eligibility before all Californians 16 and over also become eligible. Los Angeles Times


A poem to start your week: “This Bridge Across” by Christopher Gilbert.


Free online games

Get our free daily crossword puzzle, sudoku, word search and arcade games in our new game center at


Los Angeles: downright summery, 81. San Diego: partly cloudy, 72. San Francisco: mainly sunny, 63. San Jose: sunny, 63. Fresno: sunny, 72. Sacramento: sunny with some strong winds, 81.


Rep. Ted Lieu (March 29, 1969), singer Tracy Chapman (March 30, 1964), L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn (March 30, 1952), Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (March 31, 1952), Rep. Tony Cárdenas (March 31, 1963) and L.A. City Councilman Paul Koretz (April 3, 1955).

If you have a memory or story about the Golden State, share it with us. (Please keep your story to 100 words.)

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints, ideas and unrelated book recommendations to Julia Wick. Follow her on Twitter @Sherlyholmes.