I saw this poster on an Expo Line train last weekend in L.A. The MTA has posters for many, maybe all, of the county’s cities, which are displayed at various subway and train stations. The one for Pomona is, or at least was, at the Civic Center stop. This Claremont poster, with art by Jessica Polzin McCoy, is relatively new, as is the Expo Line itself. (it currently runs from Seventh Street downtown to Culver City. A second phase, to Santa Monica, is due in 2015.)
“Delicate watercolors depict a college town that flourishes within the creative environment of The Claremont University Consortium,” the text reads, “and opens an informal invitation to visit a backyard, ride a bike, step into a shady grove and attend school.”
I was a judge, one of 16, at the Claremont Pie Festival on Saturday. I describe the experience in my Wednesday column.
Above, I’m hard at work, a moment captured by impish Claremont Councilman Sam Pedroza, who wasn’t a judge (Corey Calaycay was) but kibitzed with us. Below, a typical serving, of which we generally ate half, and below that, the scene afterward in which bakers served free tastes of their entries.
And you can watch a 45-second video — my first, and it shows — of a portion of the pie-eating contest here.
The house at 1105 N. College Ave. in Claremont, subject of a column last July, may have a surprise purchaser: the University of La Verne. Friday’s column has the scoop.
Careful readers of the book “World War Z” have noted one incident in the war against zombies takes place at the Claremont Colleges. In full:
“Just outside of Greater Los Angeles, in a town called Claremont, are five colleges – Pomona, Pitzer, Scripps, Harvey Mudd and Claremont McKenna College. At the start of the Great Panic, when everyone else was literally running for the hills, three hundred college students chose to make a stand. They turned the Women’s College at Scripps into something resembling a medieval city. They got their supplies from the other campuses; their weapons were a mix of gardening tools and ROTC rifles. They planted gardens, dug wells, fortified an already existing wall. While the mountains burned behind them, and the surrounding suburbs descended into violence, those 300 kids held off 10,000 zombies! Ten thousand over the course of four months, until the Inland Empire could finally be purified. We were lucky to get there just at the tail end, just in time to see the last of the undead fall, as cheering students and soldiers linked up under the oversized, homemade Old Glory fluttering from the Pomona bell tower.”
Max Brooks, author of the 2006 novel, is a 1994 Pitzer graduate, and he gave the college’s 2011 commencement. A Claremont McKenna College writeup tells the whole story and links to a video of his speech.
The movie version, starring Brad Pitt (presumably not as a zombie) and probably not featuring the Claremont Colleges, is due in theaters Friday.
Wednesday’s column tells the history of a long-lived Claremont gift shop, Raku, that closed earlier this year.
And let me say, without my blog, this column might not exist. I posted news of Raku’s closure here, several of you commented (Meredith Evans and George Goad’s comments made the column), and Doug Lawrie, the store’s co-founder, saw the post somehow and emailed me. Then he put me in touch with Jerry and Peggy Miller, the other co-founders.
Seemed like a piece of Claremont history that ought to be told. Rather belatedly, here it is.
Friday’s column is about a comic shop, the cleverly named A Shop Called Quest, that opened recently in Claremont. It’s downtown, a rarity for a (these days) niche product like comic books, meaning that plenty of people who aren’t looking for comics are passing by and, in some cases, walking in.
Saturday, not coincidentally to the timing of today’s column, is Free Comic Book Day, a national promotion in which you can walk into a comic shop and get a free comic book. The FCBD website lists all the free comics and has a store locator. My column also gives the names and addresses of our handful of local comic shops.
The Peppertree Square shopping center in Claremont, which occupies the southeast corner of Indian Hill Boulevard and Arrow Highway, is undergoing a makeover. In this view looking east from Indian Hill, you can see the original look at the far right and a new roofline in various stages of completion along the rest of the center.
I don’t know much about the center but I believe the current look was installed in 1980 and that the center predates that. Can anyone fill us in on that and on past stores at that corner?
Google Street View now in some cases allows interior views of shops, as in the case of Some Crust Bakery in Claremont. And as reader Gavin alerted me, to my astonishment, the panoramic view of the otherwise-unpopulated shop reveals a familiar face seated at his favorite table outside: Ray Collins, the singer, Mothers of Invention co-founder and Village habitue who died in December.
The fine print on the image says it was shot in August. For those of us who miss him, it’s nice to think that in cyberspace, at least, Collins is still parked outside Some Crust with a cup of coffee.