New Los Angeles friends who originally hailed from Queens, New York were interested in learning more about their new home, so I thought it would be a memorable experience for them to leave their Westside stomping grounds and head east to Olvera Street.
Since I already attended the free docent-led tour two years ago (check out my separate blog post here), I figured it would be best for us to do a more ad-hoc adventure of the vicinity since my new friend is of Hispanic descent herself. My plans to show them the Avila House, however, were thwarted since it was closed off today in preparation for a private celebration amongst the shopkeepers for later in the evening.
“No worries,” my friend exclaims, “we already visited this area during one of my son’s school field trips.” Whew!
We made the best of things by partaking in some window shopping of the local storefronts and visiting the neighboring Plaza Firehouse. We also stumbled upon the hidden jewels of the area, the Chinese American Museum and La Plaza de Cultura y Artes (more of these experiences are covered in separate blog posts).
Although this place is known by locals as a tourist destination, one has to also remember that the area was developed at the height of the displacement of ethnic groups in the early to mid-20th Century (Chavez Ravine, Union Station development, etc.). Had it not been for El Pueblo de Los Angeles, the voices of the past would have certainly been lost through modern development and the passage of time.
125 Paseo de la Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90012
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