Fairplex Snapshot: Harvest Festival Shopping

For us, the holiday season always begins with the opening of the Original Harvest Festival Art & Craft Show. Take a quick look at what is planned for this year, as shown on KTLA yesterday:

The Original Harvest Festival Art & Craft Show is a truly delightful experience. Upon entering you are greeted by twinkling holiday lights, upbeat music, the smell of tasty treats, giant hanging stockings, the bustle of other shoppers and, if you’re lucky, you might happen to see Santa walking around.

The real draw, of course, are the hundreds of vendors, all selling unique, artisan items of many kinds. From ornaments to clothing, hair accessories to dog costumes, paintings to sketches and beyond, it’s easy to get lost in a holiday shopping haze.

The fun is almost over for today, but the Harvest Festival will be open Saturday (10 a.m. – 6 p.m.) and Sunday (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) inside Expo Hall 4 at Fairplex.

For additional show information, visit harvestfestival.com.

Fairplex Snapshot: Neighborhood Halloween Party

Every year our Community team hosts a neighborhood Halloween party for the families surrounding Fairplex!

It’s always a fun time: kids in brightly colored costumes playing games, getting their faces painted, picking up pumpkins and, of course, plenty of candy to go around.

Thank you to all the parents and children who participate each year! We love spending time getting to know our neighbors.

60 Minutes with Miguel A. Santana

Miguel Santana 214x300 60 Minutes with Miguel A. Santana

When the company you work for hires a new President and CEO, you pick up your notebook as fast as you can, you walk over to his executive assistant and you schedule an interview. Sounds easy, right? Well, it would be if everyone wasn’t trying to do the exact same thing!

Fortunately for my colleague Heather and me, Miguel had an opening in his schedule so we met with him in his office where he walked us through his life, his goals and, most importantly, his passion for the work he does.

Did you always know you wanted to work in politics? If not, what inspired you?
The Rodney King riots in 1992 inspired me to work hard to make the Los Angeles general region a better and safer place for people. We have a responsibility to do everything in our power to strengthen and empower our community.

Can you tell us a bit about your experience at Harvard?
I knew what I needed to do, so I only applied to one school – which was Harvard. Packing my things and moving with my family to Cambridge, Massachusetts was truly a transformative experience. I was exposed to East Coast weather, urban living and a very diverse culture of students. That’s where I learned that school is a gift compared to working.

What motivates you to get up every morning?
My kids. I have 4 daughters, ages 19 to 28. Their creativity and their mindfulness of what they do, where they work and their beliefs. They’re courageous in that they pursue what they love and are passionate about it rather than just being practical. They write, sing, create art and have their hobbies. They are their own persons, representative of the future. They practice what they believe every day, and I think that is something Fairplex strives to be: a place where people can pursue their passions and interests. That is a core component of who we are.

Your CV is very impressive, what drew you to Fairplex? What is your vision for Fairplex?
I was drawn by the opportunity to build and expand on what we are currently doing here. From quilters to car aficionados, there are so many people who are drawn to what we have going on at Fairplex. There are so many interests and Fairplex is a place where people can develop their interests and share it with others, and hopefully even make a living off of it. Fairplex represents the best of who we are, and it revolves around the crossing of cultures and interests. The question we should be asking is how do we make this even more inclusive and how do we continue to foster and create new cultures? I look forward to transforming our work into a lifestyle, a community, and a place to live, play, learn and work. I think the Fair is the greatest expression of all of this.

What are some of your hobbies?
Exploring Los Angeles. I like to do something new every week, whether it’s trying new foods, visiting museums or historical parts of the city. In 2016, I spent a lot of time in the Westside areas from Venice to Westchester, so now I am really looking forward is to getting reacquainted with Pomona and the surrounding areas. As a food lover, my goal is to connect to places owned by real people, not chain restaurants.

During your 20+ years in government you’ve tackled some of the region’s most difficult challenges. How do you define success?
Success is what you take from something, what you discover and learn to appreciate from your experience. I’m always looking for ways to develop the potential in everyone, everything and everywhere. This can be applied to our mission at Fairplex, which is to give our guests something meaningful to take away. If we can accomplish this, we’ve succeeded.

Do you think it’s important to get to know the people working at Fairplex? Why?
Our employees are the heart and soul of what we do here. Our people are the ones who make Fairplex what it is and I aim to respect and appreciate the work of everyone here. Each person contributes something unique to the company.

In fact, I want Fairplex employees to know they can always stop by my office. I want to hear what they have to say and how they think we can best fulfill our mission and make company culture what they think it should be. Hope they stop by and say hello!   

It’s been more than 30 days since you assumed the position of President and CEO of Fairplex. What can you tell us about this milestone?
I’ve met with all of the elected representatives for Fairplex, and it’s been an interesting and educational experience.  I enjoyed discussing how we can support each other and how to make Fairplex a place to live, learn, work and play for all the residents of Los Angeles County. 

I’ve also had the opportunity to meet with the editors of the Southern California News Group, which not only includes our local paper the Daily Bulletin but the Los Angeles Daily News, the Riverside Press-Enterprise and the Orange County Register. We had a productive conversation that included discussion of the Monday, Feb. 13, Pomona City Council meeting’s study session on F-Zone land uses.

Last month, LA County Supervisor Hilda Solis toured the campus, including The Farm and the Child Development Center. We discussed how the county and Fairplex can work together. Our conversation was positive and we look forward to building our relationship with the entire board of supervisors. 

So far, we’re off to a very good start.

If someone wants to get a hold of you, how can they do so?
They can email me at ceo@fairplex.com, send me a tweet at @FairplexCEO or stop by my office. 

L.A. Weekender: 4th of July Weekend

Fourth of July weekend is upon us and that means so are the family celebrations and one of our most popular events at Fairplex! Aren’t you excited about this 3-day weekend and about everything summer has to offer? From here on out, all you have to worry about are which beaches to hit, where to eat, who to hang out with, and of course, which Fairplex events to come to! Keep reading to see what’s going on at Fairplex and L.A. this weekend:

welcomedtd 300x129 L.A. Weekender: 4th of July WeekendDiscover the Dinosaurs: Discover the Dinosaurs is a unique hands on exhibit that consists of up to 40 moving and replica museum quality dinosaurs that gives you the opportunity to actually get close and touch the dinosaurs. I know a few places that almost call security because you’ve crossed the five feet mark, but let’s not talk about that now – let’s just focus on Discover the Dinosaurs. Beyond the exhibit, additional fun activities are available for kids of all ages, which make spending the day with the dinosaurs a great experience for the entire family. There will be Dino Face painting, Mini Golf, Dinosaur Rides, Dino Theaters and Inflatables! For more information visit: http://www.discoverthedinosaurs.com/

10344196 10152508473284450 1761106455579560474 o 300x188 L.A. Weekender: 4th of July WeekendKABOOM!: Two days remain before Fairplex’s 28th annual KABOOM! celebration! Monster trucks, motocross and one of the largest fireworks displays in all of California await you. Oh, and did I mention that we buffet dinner options are also available? This event always sells out so make sure you purchase your tickets as soon as you can! To purchase tickets to KABOOM! or to check out the programming, click here.

DTLA Paint Out: If you love art or a good crowd, then you’ll love this event! Like Paris or New York but with way fewer berets, DTLA Paint Out turns the bustling sidewalks of the Historic Core into public art studios. Bring your own supplies, pick some up at the store or just follow the group and witness art come to life all around you. Event takes place at 1 pm this Sunday, July 5. For more information click here.

For other Fairplex events click here!

The Fairplex L.A. Weekender is a weekly calendar of weekend events throughout Los Angeles County, from the heart of downtown to the beach cities to the IE. Additional information about all listings can be found at the event’s official website. If you have suggestions for an event, leave a comment in the box below or email us at madrigal@fairplex.com

Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore”

Fairplex’s assistant director of development Laura Smolka-Gallardo is our guest blogger this week:

Do you remember reading the beloved limericks in Shel Silverstein’s books as a child? (Do you know where the sidewalk ends?)

Or perhaps you remember watching the Halloween episode of “The Simpsons” when Homer, Marge, and Bart recreate Edgar Allen Poe’s famous poem, “The Raven?”

Experiencing poetry goes beyond memorizing and reciting meter in front of your sixth grade class (though I still remember all of the words to “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost!).

This weekend at Fairplex, poetry will come to life through 250 student artworks in the inaugural “ArtReach” regional art exhibition.  The call for submissions challenged students to create a dialogue between two different art forms, and the response has been greater than expected!

Held at the Millard Sheets Center for the Arts, the artworks featured in the exhibition were selected thorugh a juried process.  The show represents students of 27 art teachers from 17 public high schools representing 9 local districts.  Students from the Career & Technical Education Center (CTEC), a program of The Learning Centers at Fairplex, will also be participating, displaying works from their classes held on-site at the Fairplex grounds.

In addition to the words of Silverstein, Poe, and Frost, a variety of poetry served as the students’ inspiration to create their entries (20 pieces alone were inspired by Poe’s work, including seven about “The Raven”).  Some students used lyrics from their favorite song or even composed their own poetry for the competition.  Just as varied is the range of media and content submitted, from digital media to ceramics, from cement sculpture to portraiture.

Lugene Whitley, the exhibition’s manager/curator, noted the need for such an opportunity: “Teachers have shared with me that there are very few, if any, opportunities for students to display their artistic talents.  Most student artworks are exhibited at their schools or in small gallery spaces, so to have a space like the Sheets Gallery where hundreds of students can see their work professionally framed and presented to a large audience is really very special.  It has also allowed our CTEC students the hands-on opportunity to layout and install an exhibition.”

So if you see me at the door on Friday night during the ArtReach Opening Reception, be sure to start me off with “Two roads diverged in a yellow wood…”

Friday, March 2
6 – 9 p.m.

Saturday & Sunday, March 3 & 4
noon – 5 p.m.

Parking and entrance at Gate One

Dance Crews Battle it out at Fairplex

teammillenia crew 025 150x150 Dance Crews Battle it out at Fairplex

Team Millennia - Appeared on ABDC

If you like to watch shows like America’s Best Dance Crew, So You think You Can Dance and America’s Got Talent, then you’ll love World of Dance Tour this Saturday, April 10.  It all comes together at the largest urban dance competition in the west coast featuring groups from all over the world battling-it-out, a fashion expo and performances from some of the most popular crews in the industry including Poreotics in the finale of this season’s ABDC, Hype 5-0, Blended Projekt and Royal Flush.

Cheer on local talent as they dance their hearts out to win their claim-to-fame and of course, the $1,500 grand prize.  Representing Southern California’s urban dance culture you’ll see Barkada Modern (Cal Poly Pomona), 909 (UC Riverside) and ACA (UCLA) and many more.

poreotics1 150x150 Dance Crews Battle it out at Fairplex

Poreotics - ABDC

While your here check out the latest in street wear from independant labels to top brands at the fashion expo.

World of Dance – Buy Tickets Online

Saturday, April 10
1101 W McKinley Ave. Pomona CA 91768
3 p.m. – Midnight
All ages welcome – but the little ones might have a bedtime.

Buy a car, truck, van or specialty vehicle at auction prices!

suv 300x225 Buy a car, truck, van or specialty vehicle at auction prices!Are you in the market for a car, truck or specialty vehicle? Don’t miss the US Auction at Fairplex this Saturday, March 27 in the White Ave. lot.

Admission is FREE.
Parking at Gate 9 on White Ave.
Preview: Fri. 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Auction: Sat. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Information: (909) 982-6688

Collie Club of America National Specialty Show

collie 150x150 Collie Club of America National Specialty Show

Collies have a reputation as one of the most beautiful dog breeds in the world. These four legged friends have made many families happy.  Like Lassie, possibly one of the world’s most famous dog of all time,  a collie who made our hearts melt.

This week, the Collie Club of America brings their National Specialty show to Fairplex. The show includes  a dog agility competition, a breeders education seminar, AKC Canine Good Citizen testing, and the Collie Health Foundation dinner among other great events.

So if you LOVE collies or are just plainly a declared dog lover, this show is for YOU!

March 23-27


All Aboard for Southwest Garden Railroad Show

FairplexGardenRailroad trai All Aboard for Southwest Garden Railroad ShowThe small world of garden railroads is a hobby the whole family can enjoy. Everything you need is at this show, including tools, parts, clinics and authentic railroad items, along with dioramas and displays. You’ll meet some nice garden railroad enthusiasts who will be happy to help you get started. The Fairplex Garden Railroad operates during the show. Saturday, Oct. 31-Sunday, Nov. 1, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Admission $10; age 16 and under are free.

Flat Track Motorcycle Races Sat. at Fairplex

flat track racing resized Flat Track Motorcycle Races Sat. at FairplexAMA/Gene Romero Grand National Flat Track Championship is ON for Saturday, Oct. 24 in the Grandstand infield. This is the deciding race for AMA Champion and it’s the first time in 10 years that AMA’s Pro Grand National Twin Flat Track Series has come to So Cal. Buy tickets online, at local Harley dealerships or the Fairplex box office on the 24th. Gates open and practice starts at 3:30 p.m.; first race at 6:30 p.m. Admission $10-$40; ages 5 and under free.

Harley Davidson lovers and the charities they support hope that California Bike Week and Love Ride 26, brought down by the economy, will return next year to carry on their 25-year tradition.