Trekking LA Neighborhood Docents Provide Access to Diverse Los Angeles Communities

Los Angeles, CA (May 2012)   On the heels of the anniversary of the 1992 Los Angeles Civil Unrest, a cadre of local docents will take to the streets to make their neighborhoods more accessible and to break down barriers of race, class and geography.  These neighborhood docents will be working as part of Trekking L.A., a program of LA Commons which has the mission to connect people across Los Angeles’ vast metropolis through the artistic, social and cultural projects that celebrate the unique stories of L.A.’s neighborhoods  (  During each summer season since 2006, LA Commons has been implementing 5 -6 sold out Trekking LA tours.  The addition of nine docents will enable the organization to increase offerings to 34 tours within the programming season from May through September.  The price of the tours will also decrease from $25 per tour to $10 to open up the tours to more Angelenos wishing to discover their city.


The nine docents reflect the diversity of Los Angeles in terms of ethnicity and geography.  There is Malissa Strong an African American who moved to Boyle Heights for its affordability and rich culture and community spirit.  Filipino Elson Trinidad is a community leader in East Hollywood who grew up in the area and was on the youth council under Mayor Tom Bradley.  Westwood resident Lianne Schirmer has South American roots and is fascinated by the blend of cultures in her neighborhood including the large Persian community that dominates Westwood Boulevard.  College student Edgar Morales is an active member of the Central American community around MacArthur Park .


“I am excited that so many people have stepped up to share the richness of Los Angeles,” states LA Commons Executive Director Karen Mack.  “The LA Commons programs continue to deliver on our goal of connecting people to neighborhoods often thought of in not so positive terms, but which, in reality, are some of the richest destinations in the city, full of culture, and wonderful stories and storytellers.  I love that we direct people off the freeways and into a new part of the city in a fresh way.”


Tour offerings include “Food, Fun and Farsi” in Westwood; “The Other Hollywood” in East Hollywood; “Cabrillo Beach: Beyond the Sand” in San Pedro; and “The Delights of Garvanza” in Highland Park.


All trekking tours are $10 including food tastings.  For more information about each tour and to sign up:   Trekking L.A. is supported by the California Arts Council, the Goldhirsch Foundation and The California Consumer Protection Foundation.


L.A. Commons, a project of Community Partners, works in neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles,

facilitating artistic processes, open to all, that result in highly visible public art projects that tell dynamic

neighborhood stories. L.A. Commons builds community by validating the importance of local narratives,

enhancing the sense of belonging felt by a broad range of stakeholders and encouraging stronger ties

between the people and places of Los Angeles.


For additional information, please visit or contact Karen Mack at; 213-705-4457.


For Media Inquiries—including previews, attending the tour, or interviews—please contact Karen Mack at or 213-705-4457###