JOIN US SATURDAY, NOV. 18, 2017

For the 12th year we're walking across Los Angeles!

Save the date: Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017 at 9 a.m. Details to come!

To join in, just EMAIL US at greatlawalk@mail.com or check out our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/greatlawalk

Make sure you're on the email list! And check back here in the coming months for more details!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

The Great Los Angeles Walk 2017 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


[Click on map for closer view]

OK, you know the drill by now: Is walking 17 miles even humanly possible? (When you're taking your time on an all-day leisurely stroll, sure!) "Can I bike it? (Yes!) Take the Metro? (Of course!) Bring a dog? (Sure!) Quit half way through? (Whatever you want!) Are you personally driving me back to my car? (Well, no.)

Here it is, the unofficial Frequently Asked Questions roundup for the GREAT LOS ANGELES WALK 2017! (This will be updated with new information as it comes available!)

1. WHEN/WHERE? Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017 -- the Saturday before Thanksgiving, like we do every year. We're meeting in the Japanese American National Museum courtyard.

Feel free to get there early and grab breakfast (there's plenty of great spots in Little Tokyo). At 9 am we'll gather for a pep talk and some 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.)

Also: there are no restroom facilities available at the start point, as the museum doesn't open until 11. So make sure you do what you gotta do before you arrive.

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 the Japanese American National Museum, we'll make our way down 1st, through downtown, to where it morphs into Beverly Blvd. Then we'll stroll down Beverly -- through East Hollywood, Hollywood, the Fairfax District, and Beverly Hills  until we get to the end, at Santa Monica Boulevard. Then we hike down Santa Monica Blvd. to the ocean.

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

We strictly walk down sidewalks. As for bathroom breaks along the way, it's up to you to find businesses that will let you go. Coffee shops like Starbucks and The Coffee Bean are usually pretty good for that.

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? Explore! The whole excitement of exploring L.A. by foot is to get up close and personal with sites you might normally miss while cruising down the street in your car. And there's a lot to see this year, as downtown we pass through Little Tokyo, the L.A. Times building, City Hall and more; later, on Beverly, we'll see the Original Tommy's, CBS Television City, Cedars-Sinai and much more. Beverly is one of the oldest boulevards in Los Angeles.

6. HOW LONG IS THE HIKE? Around 17 miles.

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 by grabbing food and drinks between 4 and 8 pm at a location TBD.

12. HOW DO I GET THERE, OR GET HOME? Either plan with a friend and get to Santa Monica early morning, parking one car, then carpool to downtown (where you'll park the other car). OR: Park at downtown, walk to Santa Monica, then eventually take Metro back to downtown. OR: Park at Santa Monica at 7 a.m., allowing yourself enough time to board a Metro bus to downtown. Traffic's light that time of morning, so the bus ride is relatively quick. And that way, when you arrive in Santa Monica, your car is waiting for you. Check out LA Metro for bus or train 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 http://greatlawalk.spreadshirt.com (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; in 2015, it was Olympic Boulevard; and in 2016, we returned to Pico.

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 2017 page on Flickr for you to upload your pics. And check out www.greatlawalk.com 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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