Almost 300 people spent time in Simon Meadow on September 30, as the Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC) celebrated its 50th birthday.
Almost every organization in the Palisades was represented by a booth on the meadow, adjacent to the Palisades-Malibu YMCA pumpkin patch.
PPCC President Maryam Zar said, “I was thrilled to see the community come together so beautifully and prove that all the wonderful organizations that do an immense amount of volunteer work in this community are connected by one common thread, to benefit Pacific Palisades.”
Zar first became involved in the PPCC in 2014, as an educational representative. When that body formed the first homeless task force, Zar was the first president. She said that she was impressed by the tapestry of organizations that make the Palisades a truly unique community in Los Angeles.
“I was glad to be PPCC President during this milestone year, and to have this wonderful board and a fabulous (newly formed) ‘outreach committee’ to help envision and implement a true community celebration for our 50th year,” she said.
Long-time resident and voice the the L.A. Rams, Sam Lagana served as the event emcee.
The food was tasty and free, sponsored by Palisades PRIDE and several other benefactors, which included Councilwoman Traci Park (CD11), Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, American Legion Post 283, The Li, Siimon and Zar families, Michael Edlen, Sue Kohl, Haldis Toppel, Beth Holden-Garland, Chris Spitz, Shirley Haggstrom, Cindi Young, Joanna Spak and the PaliBu Chamber of Commerce.
Also donating to the event were Courtney Macker, Kimberly Bloom and The Palisades Garden Cafe.
Robert Flutie, the owner of Flour pizza on Via de la Paz served 130 sandwiches and pizza slices from 60 large pies.
There were long lines for the pizza and also for dessert from K’s Bakery.
K Bakery owner Kim Kedeshian, who won the Bob Sage Business Person of the Year Award from the Palisades Rotary Club in 2018, offered slices of pumpkin pie, sugar and gingerbread cookies and mini-pumpkin scones.
This editor joined the long lines to get a cup of joe from Goodhart Coffee, which was offering lattes, mochas, cappuccinos and hot chocolates.
Then a second dessert was absolutely needed, and luckily The Yogurt Shoppe was on hand with free yogurt.
At the Palisades Y booth there were boxes of candy and water, so that participants, who were enjoying the sunny weather would stay hydrated.
One of the oldest organizations in town, the Rustic Canyon/Uplifters has been here for 100 years. Randy (Thomas Randall) Young spoke about the history of the town and the history of many of the clubs.
Palisades Americanism Parade Association, which celebrated its 75th anniversary this past Fourth of July were represented by Matt Rodman and Dr. Kimi Petrick. They were giving away programs and encouraging people to sign up to volunteer next year. “There are not enough young people who want to be involved and we’re encouraging them to reach out,” Rodman said.
Resilient Palisades, a neighbor-led community group devoted to the environment, was passing out packets of native seeds.
That group honored Gail Wirth, Susan Fairbain, Sheda Morshed and Janice Goldfinger for their efforts to remove gas blowers from neighborhoods. They have helped gardeners replace gas with electric models.
The American Legion, which was founded in Pacific Palisades in 1928, honored Joseph McCann (Jay) for his work for the organization.
Afterwards, Commander Jim Cragg told CTN that a haunted house is being planned for the Legion Hall, as a stop-over place, when people are out trick-n-treating.
Shirley Haggstrom, who was honored for her efforts with the Temescal Canyon Association, also sits on the Community Council. The TCA was founded in 1972, and President James Alexakis, said that the monthly hikes will resume shortly https://temcanyon.org/
The Historical Society also celebrated its Jubilee celebration this year and honored town historian Randy Young.
Pacific Palisades Optimist Club honored long-time members Tom McKiernan, Don Haselkorn and Lee Calvert, 99, for their long involvement with the club.
Lou Kamer was recognized by the PPCC for his efforts in transportation problems and solutions for this area.
The Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness honored Carol Sanborn for her fundraising efforts. Sanborn also leads the effort to make brown bag lunches that are distributed to the homeless on Monday and Wednesday.
The Theatre Palisades, which is celebrating 60 years of community theater, honored a long- time volunteer Martha Hunter, member Maria O’Conner, who had volunteered for about 10 years and a young high school volunteer Clayton Collins.
On hand were Councilmember Traci Park, who stayed the entire celebration, and who was joined by L.A. County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, in recognizing outstanding residents.
Also participating in the PPCC celebration were Senator Ben Allen and Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin.
Afterwards Zar said, “The work of the PPCC is broad and encompassing of many community interests, so I was truly thrilled to have this town square atmosphere for our Jubilee. I hope we can continue some sort of fall celebration tradition in years to come.”