Another crime bus tour of the eccentric SGV

Lions, Nazis, millionaire music producers, hard-boiled crime fiction authors and dead brides.

The SGV’s got it all apparently, just ask Esotouric. They’re putting together another blood and dumplings tour. Press release on the jump:


LOS ANGELES- On Saturday, September 13 (repeating 11/29), offbeat bus tour
company Esotouric presents its most bizarre true crime and cultural history
tour, BLOOD & DUMPLINGS. Starting from the premise that the secret heart of
Southern California’s weirdo culture beats strongest in the Eastern San
Gabriel Valley, the tour introduces passengers to such fascinating local
characters as the Man from Mars Bandit, record producer Phil Spector, lion
tamers Charles and Muriel Gay, and indie filmmaking icon Timothy Carey,
whose notorious “The World’s Greatest Sinner” was shot on location in 1960s
El Monte.

Heading due East out of downtown, the tour explores several historic
communities that reflect the growth and eccentricity that are hallmarks of
20th century L.A. Crime Bus passengers will be explore notorious, strange
and fascinating forgotten tales from the past hundred years, each told at
the scene of the crime. They’ll thrill to the freakish case of the Man from
Mars Bandit who stalked area supermarkets for months in 1951 before meeting
his match in a police sharpshooter, shock to discover the deadly infighting
among El Monte’s American Nazi Party members, mourn the Case of the Buried
Bride dragged beneath her home on her wedding day by her secret lover, gnash
teeth at the weird lion farm (home to every MGM lion) that served lion meat
barbecues on special occasions, and view scenes of notorious cases including
Phil Spector’s spooky hilltop castle and James Ellroy’s slain mother Geneva
(the true-life inspiration for his Black Dahlia novel).

And since no visit to the San Gabriel Valley is complete without a delicious
Chinese meal, the Crime Bus will stop at 101 Noodle Express (one of L.A.
Weekly critic Jonathan Gold’s picks for 99 L.A. restaurants not to be
missed) to pick up a dumpling feast, which will be enjoyed picnic-style at
Monster Park, a remarkable sea-themed folk art environment recently saved
from demolition. There passengers can enjoy their snack in the mouth of a
concrete whale, or under a grinning octopus, then pose for photos with the

All this, plus wild shootouts, dope-dealing druggists, missing Salvador Dali
paintings, the original “little girl down a well” 1940s television
sensation, and a very strange story about ducks. Don’t miss the Crime Bus
tour that guide Kim Cooper calls “My personal favorite of all our tours,
packed with more offbeat history, horror, roadside architecture and fabulous
Route 66 vistas than any other.”

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