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On the Town: National Night Out brings Glendale community together

Glendale  National Night Out
Felix Fey, 9, high fives firefighter Andy Galvan at Glendale’s Nibley Park party for National Night Out.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

The 35th anniversary of National Night Out was marked this past Aug. 6. In Glendale, 37 events were held in an effort to strengthen the bond between neighborhoods and the local police department.

At Nibley Park on East Mountain Avenue, board members of the Rossmoyne Mountain Homeowners Assn. went all out, bringing in the La Panini Grill truck, an ice cream vendor, movies and opportunity drawings for gift certificates to local restaurants.

Also “imported” was Glendale Police Chief Carl Povilitis, who said he was planning on dropping by five more National Night Out events.

“Every place has a different flavor to it depending on the neighborhood,” he said.


Nibley’s was top of the line.

Glendale  National Night Out
Aren Petrosian, 7, and little brother Alec Petrosian, 3, went straight for the ice cream at National Night Out in Nibley Park, one of 37 events held in Glendale neighborhoods.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

Lending additional significance to the event was an appearance by Glendale City Councilwoman Paula Devine and her ever lovin’ hubby, Art, who live in the neighborhood. Conscious about neighborhood safety at night, the councilwoman handed out glow-in-the-dark wristbands.

A hook-and-ladder fire truck drove up around the starting time for the event, 6 p.m. Kids immediately swarmed the three firefighters there.


Firefighter Andy Galvan took only 30 seconds to put on his full firefighting gear. Regulations give him one minute.

He high-fived would-be firefighter Felix Fey, 9, who lives down the street. Felix’s dad, Cort Fey, said, “We want to support the neighborhood.”

Galvan’s firefighting partners were paramedic James Rohrig and engineer Brian Williams.

Seemingly more interested in ice cream than the firefighters, though, were the Petrosian brothers, Aren, 7, and Alec, 3. Toppings were plentiful, but Aren’s favorite was the whipped cream.

Their mom, Alina Hartoonians, said she read about the event on Facebook and thought her children would like the neighborhood party.

Lorna Vartanian, president of the Rossmoyne Mountain Homeowners Assn., used a loudspeaker to be heard over the crowd of some 200 neighbors, with more expected to come during the four-hour event.

“We get out our neighbors to bond and look out for each other,” Vartanian said.

Another board member on hand was Sharon Hyder, who sold the opportunity drawing tickets for 34 restaurant certificates.


The aim of National Night Out is for residents to improve relationships with local police officers, discuss ways to make their neighborhoods safer and organize Neighborhood Watch programs.

La Crescenta Woman’s Club
The La Crescenta Woman’s Club “Paint & Sip” party brought out the Picasso in Jeanette Ruffalo and mom, club member Emma Lastina.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

Members of the La Crescenta Woman’s Club know how to work hard and play hard — all in the name of charity, of course.

Last Thursday, about 35 members and guests were as good as Picasso as they painted away on vases, decorating them with greenery and flowers. For an evening called “Paint & Sip,” they were guided by artist Marcy Ferro.

The organization’s clubhouse, bathed in light, took the place of the slightly dimmer Joselito’s restaurant in Tujunga, the scene of past fundraising painting parties.

“We can see better with more light,” said Marianne Jennings, club president. “We want to introduce more of the community to our club and have fun at the same time.”

A little wine and pizza added to the gaiety, too.


What’s a fundraiser without an opportunity drawing? Jeanette Ruffalo won the chance to drop by Lordz Flowers in Montrose for free flowers to put in her vase. Ruffalo was the guest of her mother, club member Emma Lastina. Both are La Crescenta residents.

“If I bring her to enough events, she’ll become a member,” Lastina said.

Cindy Charles, the club’s second vice president, dreamed up the painting event at the clubhouse.

Charles is curator of the club’s evening division, whose members put on smaller fundraisers. The evening’s proceeds will go toward the club’s philanthropies, one of which is “Soles4Souls.”

Club members will be collecting pairs of new or gently used shoes for “Soles4Souls” at the clubhouse, 4004 La Crescenta Ave., on Sept. 14.

Ruth Sowby Rands may be reached at

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