The New Rancho Caninos Dog Park In Palos Verdes

The Rancho Caninos Dog Park at Point Vicente Park/Civic Center is now open.  Located at 30940 Hawthorne Boulevard in Rancho Palos Verdes, this half acre park has separate areas for large and small dogs.  There is also seating and shaded areas where “parents” can enjoy watching their furry pets have a good time.

The park received its name and logo from the areas prior use as a cattle ranch in the 1830’s known as Rancho de los Palos Verdes.  The Ruth family graciously granted permission to the park to use their swinging heart cattle brand for the parks logo.  Several cities on the Peninsula, are pursuing a larger regional park at the former Palos Verdes Landfill site owned by Los Angeles County which is located in Rolling Hills Estates.  It could take several years to get the paperwork processed for that site and Rancho Caninos Dog Park will be a temporary solution to meet the local Palos Verdes homes owners pet’s needs.

Rancho Caninos Dog Park is open during normal park operating hours, one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset.  The area will not be staffed and rules will be posted.  For more information contact the Recreation and Parks Department at (310) 544-5260 or

Photo courtesy of Rancho Palos Verdes


Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Cherry Blossom Picnic Day

Palos Verdes homes owners are in for a special treat as the Cherry Blossoms are starting to bloom  at the South Coast Botanic Garden.  This is the closest location for us to see the beauty and color of these trees.  This yearly event reminds us that Spring is just around the corner.  On Saturday, March 3rd, from 9:00 a.m – 5:00 p.m. bring a picnic and enjoy Cherry Blossom season at the Garden.  Cherry Blossoms are said to be an omen of good fortune, and also an emblem of love and affection.  So why not enjoy nature and celebrate these gorgeous blooms.  The upper and lower meadows will be open for picnicking on this special day, March 3, 2012.  Also the tram tours will run Saturdays at 11, and 1 at the cost of $4 per person.

I am told that the Cherry Blossoms are just starting to bloom now but are not in full bloom yet.  They are only in full bloom for about a week and you can keep checking with the Garden to check their progress.

The price for admission to the South Coast Botanic Gardens is: adults $8, seniors $6, students with I.D. $6, children 5-13 $3, and children 4 and under are free.  The South Coast Botanic Garden is. located at 26300 Crenshaw Blvd, Palos Verdes Peninsula.  For more information call  (310) 544-1948.

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Abalone Cove Shoreline Park Tide Pool Walk

If you want to have some outdoor fun this weekend, here is a suggestion.  On Sunday, February 19, 2012, at 12:30 p.m., Abalone Cove Shoreline Park will be having one of their free public tide pool walks.  No matter how many times we have been to the tide pools, it is always an enjoyable visit.  I love the magic of seeing all the creatures living in the pools.  Palos Verdes homes owners are lucky to be surrounded by wonderful tide pool areas.

Abalone Cove Shoreline Park features two beaches (Abalone Cove and Sacred Cove), tide pools, and viewing areas of trails crisscrossing the area.  These hikes are a great time to enjoy nature with experts who will be discussing Palos Verdes Peninsula history, geology, plant and animal life, as well as marine mammals. You can see sea urchins, sea stars, sea hares and sea anemones in pristine tide pool settings.

The hikes are scheduled when the tide is low enough to view the marine life.  Please wear sturdy shoes while you visit the tide pools during this two hour walk.

Parking is available at Abalone Cove Shoreline Park located at 5970 Palos Verdes Drive South, Rancho Palos Verdes 90275.  There is no fee for the hike and the parking fees will be waived up to 45 minutes prior to the hike and 30 minutes after.  For more information go to www.LosSeranos.og, or call (310) 377-5370.

Photo courtesy of Los Serenos de Point Vicente 

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Visit the S.S. Lane Victory

Did you know that in 1945, here in our own Palos Verdes Peninsula backyard, the S.S. Lane Victory served during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War as well as in peace time as part of the merchant fleet?  After years of deterioration, she was restored by volunteers of the United States Merchant Marine Veterans of World War II.  Now the S.S. Lane Victory is nationally recognized as a historic landmark, and serves as a living museum and memorial to the service of all Merchant Marine sailors and Navy Armed Guardsmen. You can visit the ship which is open daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (admission price is $5.00 per adult and $2.00 per child).

During the summer, there are three  “Victory at Sea” special day cruises which depart from San Pedro at 8:30 a.m. During the day there is dancing, and after leaving the breakwater there are tours of the engine room, radio room, wheel house,  museums and gift shop.  You cruise past Avalon and will learn about all the points of interest along the way.  Mid day there will be an all you can eat buffet.  Next will be a reenactment of a spy attack along with  planes flying outside the ship if weather permits.  At the end of the day,  tug boats will assist the boat back into the main channel to its berth.  A Los Angeles fire boat provides a beautiful water display to welcome you back.  This unusual and fun cruise has limited space and is only available July 23, August 27 and September 24th.  Tickets are $130 /per adult, $80 for children 15 or younger. For more information on the summer cruise go to

The S.S. Lane Victory is located at Berth 94, in San Pedro. For more information call (310) 519-9545

Photo courtesy of S.S. Lane Victory

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Visit Founders Park

Sitting on the south side of the Trump National Golf Course Clubhouse, is Founders Park with it’s 5.5  tranquil acres with breath taking ocean views, picnic tables, a gazebo, coastal access and adjacent walking trails. In 2006, it was formally named in honor of the City’s founders who led the effort to incorporate the City of Rancho Palos Verdes more than 30 years ago.

This is a well-visited park because of its fabulous location and unbelievable ocean views.  This is one of the few parks which allow ceremonies to be held in its open area.  Planned events are limited to one event per day (3 hours max) between the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  The spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island make for a nice back drop along with the custom built gazebo. There are also optional packages such as chair rentals, and ceremony coordinators that can be arranged with the City’s Recreation and Parks staff. There are nearby restrooms and public parking is also available to visitors.

For more information about rental rates and availability, contact Marcella at (310) 544-5280.  Founders Park is located at One Ocean Trails Drive, Rancho Palos Verdes 90275.

Photo courtesy of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Point Fermin Lighthouse Historical Site

One of Palos Verdes Peninsula’s interesting architectural structures is the Point Fermin Lighthouse located in San Pedro.  Built in 1874, the Point Fermin Lighthouse was the first navigational source of light in the San Pedro Bay.  Phineas Banning had petitioned the Federal Government along with several businessmen in 1854 to place a lighthouse on the point.  After 20 years it was finally built in what is known as the Stick Victorian Style which is a simpler design than the later Victorian period.  The lighthouse did not have a fog-signalling apparatus and was a one keeper station until 1941 when all coastal lights were extinguished as protection against army attacks.  It served as an aid to safe passage between the Channel Islands and  the harbor.  After the war, the light remained off and the structure fell into disrepair.  However, in 1974 with the help of many volunteers the building was brought back to its original charm for it’s centennial celebration.  Now the building is surrounded by colorful flower gardens, and is one of the oldest lighthouses on the West Coast.

The Point Fermin Lighthouse is open Tuesday through Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.  Guided tours are offered at 1:00, 2:00 and 3:00 p.m. The admission is free, however, a donation is requested from visitors.  Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult, and no child under 40 inches tall will be admitted to the tower.  For more information contact (310) 241-0684.

The Point Fermin Lighthouse and Museum is located at 807 W. Paseo Del Mar, San Pedro.

Photo courtesy of Point Fermin Lighthouse

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Visit Fort MacArthur Military Museum

The Fort MacArthur Museum is dedicated  to the preservation of the history of Fort MacArthur, an army post which guarded the Los Angeles harbor from 1914 to 1974.  The museum was established in 1985 and is housed in corridors and galleries of the historic Battery Osgood-Farley.  The concecpt was to create a collection of historical structures which were part of the U.S. Army’s role in the defense of the continental coastline from invasion.  The structures were part of the American coastal defenses when the Los Angeles harbor was a military port for both the Army and Navy.  The rooms and galleries contain a variety of exhibits which show the history of the harbor defenses, and the activities they played in keeping the Los Angeles area safe during the World Wars.

The Fort MacArthur Museum is located in Angels Gate Park in San Pedro at 3601 S. Gaffey St.  The museum hours are Tuesday, Thursday, weekends and holidays from noon to 5:00 pm.  For more information contact (310) 548-2631.  There is no entrance fee.

Photo courtesy of Fort MacArthur Museum

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Linden H. Chandler Preserve

When many of us hear the name Chandler we immediately think of the sand and gravel pit in Rolling Hills Estates.  Linden H. Chandler, was the original owner; he moved here from Colorado when he was 9 and became an influential figure during the early growth of the Palos Verdes Peninsula.  Chandler was an active member of Los Rancheros Vistadores and rode in many Rose Parades.  Perhaps this is why he so clearly wanted  to see the land in this area preserved for horseback riding and hikers.  The Linden H. Chandler Preserve was created in 1993 through a sale and donation by the property heirs. 

The preserve is 28.5 acres and is a critical part of the natural environment in Rolling Hills Estates.  Owned by the City of Rolling Hills Estates and the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, intensive restoration has added native wildflowers, coastal sage scrub plants and shrubs to the hillsides.  Living throughout this rare habitat are many different animals, including the threatened California Gnatcatcher, so bring your binoculars. One of the easily accessible self guided nature walks begins at the little league parking lot.  The loop trail is .9 miles and is considered to be easy to moderate.  While you are walking the trail remember not to drink any water from the streams since they are not considered fit for human consumption.

The preserve hours are from dawn to dusk.  To get to the trail enter the Dapplegray School property in Rolling Hills Estates and turn left immediately.  Follow the road to the bottom and park in the ball field parking lot.  There you will see a trail map on the welcome sign.

The photo is courtesy of the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy        

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – See the “Talking Clock”

When taking a trip to our local shopping mall the Promenade on the Peninsula in Rolling Hills Estates, you can check the time by stopping to visit  the outdoor “Talking Clock“.  It sits at the front of the mall on Silver Spur Road near the steps to Ruby’s and the Ice Chalet.  Seasonal flowers make up the face of this working time piece. 

The clock plays the National Anthem at noon and tells the time each hour.  This work of art was donated to the city by the Medawar Time Corporation.  Owner Mr. Michel Medawar, who was a watch repairer in Beriut, Lebanon,  came here in 1975 and opened a store in Rancho Palos Verdes.  He wanted to express his appreciation for his adopted country; so he designed and organized the installation of the flower clock on land that was donated by Terry Cole (a local developer).   Actor Danny Thomas actually made the dedication at a formal ceremony in 1987.  The Talking Clock attracts not only children, but adults who stop and enjoy the beautiful flowers.           

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Deane Dana Friendship Park

Deane Dana Friendship Community Regional Park is a 123 acre park located on the Palos Verdes Peninsula and is one of the parks enjoyed by owners of Palos Verdes homes.  The park over looks San Pedro and has panoramic view of Catalina Island, the harbors of Long Beach and Los Angeles, and also the San Bernardino Mountain ranges.  This park has many amenities such as a natural history museum, gift shop,  indoor and outdoor classrooms and even live animal displays to educate and entertain in the 4000 square foot Nature Center.  The park is ADA accessible and there are many school field trips here.   Many hiking trails run throughout the park, some with ADA accesibility, taking you through the restored Coastal sage scrub habitat along the hillsides.  There is a sheltered picnic area with barbecues and a playground where you can stop for lunch or hold a special event. 

The Friendship Park also offers special fee programs such as a Field Trip in Nature where an animal presentation is given along with a bus ride and a hike, or Birthday N Nature  party which includes an animal presentation, a birthday message, projects,a bus ride and a hike.  For more information on these activities, fees and reservations please contact (310) 519-6048. 

The park is located at Western Avenue and West 9th Street in San Pedro (1850 West 9th St.). It is open daily from 7:00 a.m. to sunset.  The Nature Center is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The Nature Center is closed on Mondays.  There is no admission charge and parking is also free.  For more information contact (310) 519-6115.

Photo courtesy of Los Angeles County Park and Recreation