The 15th edition of the Great Los Angeles Walk is coming on Saturday, November 21! (Always the Saturday before Thanksgiving.) We'll know later this year if it's safe to meet up, or if we come up with an alternative in these uncertain times. Check back for details!

To join in, just EMAIL US at or check out our Facebook page:

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Saturday, November 5, 2016

The Great Los Angeles Walk 2016 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

"Wait, you're doing what?"

"Is walking 14 miles even humanly possible?"

"Can I bike it? (Yes!) Take the Metro (Yes! Thanks to the Expo Line this year!) Bring a dog? (Sure!) Quit half way through? (Whatever you want!) Are you personally driving me back to my car? (Well, except for that one.)"

Here it is, the unofficial Frequently Asked Questions roundup for the GREAT LOS ANGELES WALK 2016! (This will be updated with new information as it comes available!)

1. WHEN/WHERE? Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016 -- the Saturday before Thanksgiving, like we do every year. We're meeting at GRAND HOPE PARK in Downtown Los Angeles (corner of 9th and Hope). Under the clock tower. NOTE: Pets are not allowed in the park, but no worries: We'll be right at the edge of the park, so you can simply stand with your dog on the other side of the fence.

Feel free to get there early and grab breakfast (there's a Ralphs right across the street). At 9 am we'll gather for a pep talk andsome info about the day. Then, we're off, some time after 9 am! THE WALK HAPPENS, RAIN OR SHINE! (We had light rain one year, but it cleared up by mid day.)

2. WHO? We're expecting 300 or so urban hikers this year. We're taking RSVPs at greatlawalk(at)mail(dot)com (yes, "mail," not "gmail") and on Facebook, but RSVPs are not necessary. We'll take anyone who shows up too!

3. HOW MUCH DOES IT COST? C'mon, it's completely free! But you're on your own when it comes to lunch, dinner, water, etc. So don't forget to plan accordingly.

4. WHAT'S THE PATH? From Grand Hope Park, we'll make our way down Hope to Pico. And then we'll head down Pico, and keep walking west to the ocean!

After hitting the ocean and taking celebratory photos, we'll then celebrate nearby at an after party (Location TBD).

5. WHAT IF I CAN'T GET THERE THAT EARLY, OR DON'T WANT TO START THAT FAR WEST? Just wait for us somewhere on the path and join in once we pass by. Several hikers will be Twittering as well -- including us, at @greatlawalk. Check one of those Twitter accounts to figure out where we are.

6. WHAT DO WE DO ALONG THE WAY? Pico is the famed street that Pulitzer Prize-winning food writer Jonathan Gold once ate his way down. We're going to follow Gold's lead. Stop and eat along the way at some of his favorite spots. You'll also take your time and look at some of the other sites along the way: the Convention Center (at that point, home to the Auto Show); the Central American-dominated Byzantine-Latino Quarter; the city's shortest street (Powers Place); the beautiful old homes of Alvarado Terrace; a slice of Koreatown; the gut-busting food of spots like Oki-Dog and Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles; the closed (for the Sabbath) Jewish shops and restaurants west of Fairfax; the Fox lot; the Rancho Park golf course; the cool ocean breeze once we hit Santa Monica; and much more.

6. HOW LONG IS THE HIKE? Around 14 and a half miles. This is the shortest Great Los Angeles Walk we've ever done, but there's a reason for it: We want folks to STOP and enjoy some of the food and sites that the Walk has to offer.

IMPORTANT: This is not a race. Sure, you can sprint all the way to the end, but where's the fun in that? There's no prize for who gets there first. Instead, take a breath, and join the bulk of us as we leisurely stroll toward the end and stop frequently to take in the sights.

7. WHEN WILL WE GET TO THE END? With so many hikers, people will eventually start to space out. Impatient, faster walkers might get there soon after lunch. But the bulk of the walkers will get there around 4.

8. CAN WE BIKE IT? BRING KIDS? PETS? Because you're walking on your own accord -- remember, this is an unofficial gathering of passionate Angelenos walking the streets of their favorite city -- you can do whatever you want. Use your best judgement, of course. We're not responsible for you.

9. WHAT ABOUT INJURIES? Again, there is no infrastructure to our Walk, so you need to take care of yourself just like you would whenever you walk anywhere. Be careful, stay safe and stick with a group of walkers!

10. WHAT ABOUT LUNCH? We'll be taking a lunch break -- probably around an hour or so -- around the halfway point. 

11. WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE WALK IS DONE? We'll take group photos at the end... and then celebrate at an after party between 4 and 8 pm at a location TBD.

12. HOW DO I GET THERE, OR GET HOME? Quite simple this year: THE METRO EXPO LINE! We've been waiting a decade for the downtown-to-the-ocean train, and now you'll never again have to worry about how to get back and forth!

Also, if the train's not your thang, check out LA Metro for bus times!

13. WHAT SHOULD I WEAR/BRING? Loose, comfy clothing. I'd wear shorts, a t-shirt (and perhaps a sweatshirt, depending on the temperature). Also, tennis shoes... sunglasses... a hat... sunscreen... extra socks... a blister kit (optional, of course -- I haven't brought one, although Band-Aids  are a good idea)... and most importantly, a camera! We'll all be documenting it and posting pics later.

14. HOW CAN I GET A T-SHIRT? T-shirts are now for sale at (we don't make any money off of these). But order fast, in order get the shirts in time for the Walk.

15. HOW SHOULD I TRAIN FOR THIS? It's not a marathon, so training isn't really necessary. I suppose you could walk around your neighborhood in the days before hand... but I'd avoid any big gym routine the day before, so you're not sore the day you're hiking. But other than that... I didn't train at all for any of the previous nine walks, and have turned out just fine.

16. WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS? Why not? There's no special reason, no charity, no protest, no issue we're promoting -- other than a passion for Los Angeles. In 2006, I organized our walk down Wilshire to mark my 10th anniversary in Los Angeles. But it was so much fun, and it was a chance to meet so many new people, that we did it again in 2007, down Pico; in 2008, via Sunset and Santa Monica Blvd.; and in 2009, we hit West Adams as we walked down Adams and Washington to Venice Beach. In 2010, we returned to Wilshire for the fifth walk; in 2011, we hit Hollywood; in 2012, it was Melrose's turn; in 2013, it was all about Sunset Boulevard; in 2014, we hit the Valley via Ventura Boulevard; and in 2015, it was Olympic Boulevard.

It's the Saturday before Thanksgiving as well, so somehow I don't feel as bad gorging on sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie a few days later. And hey, it'll be a cool conversation piece at your holiday party.

17. CAN I SEND IN PHOTOS? READ A RECAP LATER? Of course! We'll have an official GREAT LOS ANGELES WALK 2016 page on Flickr for you to upload your pics. And check out the Monday after the Walk to read a full recap! Send us links to your own recaps, YouTube videos, etc.

18. IMPORTANT: You are walking on your own volition. The Great Los Angeles Walk is just a casual opportunity to walk with other Angelenos through the city. It's not an official organization of any sort -- and is therefore not responsible for your conduct or anything that may happen during your hike. Be careful, and be respectful of others and of your city.

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