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Monrovia Beats La Canada in Football

Monrovia over La Canada, 24 to 7. Wins Rio Hondo League title.

- Brad Haugaard

100% Chance of Rain for Monrovia: Tonight After Trick-or-Treating

Chance of rain tonight starting at 40 percent at 9 p.m., rising to 100 percent by 2 a.m. Sounds like most of the trick-or-treating should be done by then.

- Brad Haugaard

Halloween at Monrovia's Library Park

Doggy dress-up for Halloween at Library Park. Lots of fun for kids, too. 

- Brad Haugaard

Lunch at Bull Taco

Lunch at The new Bull Taco, on the north side of Lemon near Myrtle. Minimalist  decor. Got a California Burrito ($8) and a Diet Coke (1.50). The burrito (I took a couple bites before snapping this picture) has carne asada, tater tots and avocado in it. Came with chips and quite spicy salsa. Satisfying burrito. 

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Construction Will Affect Traffic at Myrtle and California

- From Nov. 3 to May 2015 traffic lanes at California and Myrtle will be affected. Expect delays and use alternate routes when possible. The streets will remain open to through traffic but street parking will not be available. They will be down to one lane each way for a limited time during construction.

- The Monrovia Park & Ride Lot at the southwest corner of Myrtle and Pomona Ave will be for the most part closed starting Nov. 10 to May 2015. The contractor will be building the Monrovia Transit Plaza and Park.

Source: City of Monrovia press release

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Council: Wildfire Protection Plan; Friday Family Festival

At its November 4 meeting (agenda: ) the Monrovia City Council will ...

- consider adopting a Community Wildfire Protection Plan, to protect homes threatened by fires. "Monrovia has 1,450 homes in the very high fire zone and 3,500 homes in the ember zone, meaning there are 4,950 homes at some level of risk from wildfire."

- consider adopting an agreement to extend for 6-months Family Festival Productions' contract to produce the Friday Night Family Festival in Old Town, while at the same time asking other companies for proposals on how they would manage the festival.

- Brad Haugaard

Naked Woman Running on Foothill | Another Monrovia Football Title? | STAAR Q3 Report

~ Naked woman running on Foothill Boulevard this morning.

~ Monrovia about to wrap up another league title?

~ Monrovia's STAAR Surgical, which makes implantable eye lenses, today reported third quarter revenue of $18.2 million, a 6.3% increase over $17.1 million reported for the third quarter of 2013.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Teen Driver vs. Pedestrian; Bear on Roof; Etc.

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 27-29 2014 . - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 387 service events, resulting in 61 investigations.

Traffic Collision – Vehicle vs. Pedestrian 
On October 28 at 7:29 a.m., a traffic collision was reported in the area of Myrtle and Foothill. A teenage driver hit a pedestrian. The pedestrian was taken to a hospital for treatment.

Suspicious Noises / Bear Incident 
On October 28 at 8:47 p.m., police received a call from a resident in the 400 block of North Primrose reporting suspicious noises on their roof. An officer responded, along with the Foothill Air Support Team helicopter, and they discovered a bear on the roof of the residence. The bear was left alone and eventually left the area.

Warrant – Suspect Arrested 
On October 28 at 10:38 p.m., officers responded to a 9-1-1 hangup call involving a family disturbance in the 900 block of West Olive. An officer arrived and spoke to a male adult, who stated his 17-year-old stepson was arguing with him and took off, jumping over walls to get away from him. A computer check of the juvenile revealed he had a no-bail juvenile warrant for his arrest. Officers eventually located the subject hiding in the bed of a pickup truck in a hotel parking lot. The juvenile was arrested and taken into custody. He was taken to Eastlake Juvenile Hall.

Under the Influence of a Contolled Substance / Possession of a Controlled Substance / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspects Arrested 
On October 29 at 11:40 a.m., acting on evidence gathered from a grand theft auto incident earlier in the week, officers went to a location in the 600 block of West Palm to further the investigation. At the location, officers discovered drugs, drug paraphernalia, and a suspect under the influence of a controlled substance. Three suspects were arrested.

Mental Evaluation 
On October 29 at 11:01 p.m., an officer was dispatched to a residence in the 200 block of North Grand Avenue to keep the peace. An 18-year-old, male subject was out of control in the residence. The subject was distraught over a breakup with his girlfriend. He was taken to a hospital, where he was held for mental evaluation.

Sunrise over Monrovia

Sunrise over Monrovia. Looks like a beautiful day. 

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia California Prepares for Ebola | Rain?

~ While downplaying the possibility of Ebola hitting the Monrovia area, Fire Chief Christopher Donovan says the city is getting ready anyway. Special protective gear, ambulance and hospital procedures. Comment: Good! Better safe than sorry. Details:

~ National Weather Service predicting rain for California this Friday and Saturday, though not much for the Monrovia area.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Chamber of Commerce Annual Award Winners

The recipients of the Monrovia Chamber of Commerce is annual awards for 2014 are:

- Iris Award, Citizen of the Year, Pam Fitzpatrick.

- Monroe Award, Business Person of the Year, Ron Ross of Wendy's Monrovia.

- Dick Lord Award for outstanding contributions to the Chamber, Jason Landes.

- Military Service and Stewardship Award, Rob Hammond.

- Brad Haugaard

Sign Being Removed | Monrovia City Hall Closed for Vets Day

~ I saw this sign at the entrance to the Monrovia Hillside Preserve just off of Ridgecrest. Since this isn't Forest Service land I asked Director of Community Services Tina Cherry why it was there. She said the Forest Service "has used this access point in the past" but is no longer using it, "so the sign will be removed."

~ Monrovia City Hall will be closed for Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia World War II Vet Celebrates 90th Birthday

Antonio Sanchez Jr., a long-time Monrovian (having lived in the same house since the 1950s) and a World War II veteran, is celebrating his 90th birthday here in Monrovia on Nov. 8. His son Richard says his dad was attached to the 390th AAA [Anti Aircraft Artillery] as part of General George Patton's Third Army. Happy birthday, Antonio! And many more.

- Brad Haugaard

Statements by Candidates For 41st Assembly District

I was approached in early September by Nathaniel Tsai, who is the Republican candidate for the 41st Assembly District, of which Monrovia is a part. He asked if I would do a story about his candidacy. Instead, I offered to publish a campaign statement, with the understanding that I would make the same offer to incumbent Chris Holden. Both responded favorably, and have submitted statements. Here they are, unedited, in the order I received them. - Brad Haugaard

From Assemblyman Chris Holden's Campaign

Dear readers,

When I was elected to the Assembly in November 2012, the future of our great state was an unsteady one. Facing lagging job growth, record budget deficits and rising costs for college and post-secondary education, I joined my fellow members in the Legislature in working to make California a better place to live for millions of middle-class families.

But this work is hardly reserved for those in Sacramento. In my two years serving Assembly District 41, it has been my privilege to work with business owners and community leaders alike to create common-sense solutions and boost job growth for the Foothill communities. We have worked to expand usage of small business loans, boosted the development of 'start-up' companies and helped reduce fees for California students attending our public universities through the Middle Class Scholarship program.

In addition, I have continued to advocate for expansions of the Gold Line, a project that I first got involved with as Mayor of Pasadena, my city of lifelong residence. Connecting Pasadena to the Gold Line, coupled with the construction of the Paseo Colorado and the new convention center, helped revitalize the downtown area for both residents and business owners.

Expansion of the light rail in the San Gabriel Valley would connect the existing line from Pasadena and progressing expansion projects to Azusa with communities extending out through to La Verne, Claremont and even to Ontario Airport. This would not only provide a clean and cheap transportation alternative for commuters in our district, but it would also continue to boost local business activity.

Today in California, we've turned record deficit into budget surpluses, a first in many years for our state, which has allowed us to make investments to safeguard our state's future. Expanding our public transportation options is an investment in our businesses, communities and our environment.

It has been my honor to serve the foothill communities in the Assembly these past two years, but I chose to run again because I know there is more work to be done. I hope that you'll join me this November in working to continue to support small business growth, provide aid for job seekers and ensure the success of future Californians by improving our public schools and universities as well as preserving our precious natural resources. I have always relied on the advice of people like yourself, so I look forward to working with you to find the commonplace solutions that will keep making this state better.


Chris Holden

From  Nathaniel Tsai's Campaign

"Welcome to Our Future":  Nathaniel Tsai for California State Assembly
by Zachary Grau

As of April 9th, Nathan became an official write-in candidate for California's State Assembly in the 41st District. On June 3 Nathan marked a chapter in this journey, as he became California's youngest state nominee for State Assembly! Now Nathan has a chance to become the youngest candidate to win a state election in the entire nation later this November.

Nathan was born in Glendale, CA, and was raised in Alhambra before moving to San Marino, where he graduated from San Marino High School. Nathan is currently a freshman at CMC, where he is majoring in Government. He is a swimmer for the CMS Swim and Dive team, an active member of the Claremont College Republicans, and a cadet in CMC's ROTC program.

During our interview, it became apparent how much Nathan valued the importance of representation. As he puts it, "I'm not attracted to politics, but rather I'm attracted to serving the interests of my constituents." Following this ideal, Nathan wanted me to know how this whole campaign did not start because of his love of politics, but rather "the opportunity to serve the true interests of his constituents". He spoke about how "service above self" is an important principle he lives by, and that political office is an outlet where he could personify this principle on a grand scale.

Toward the end of our interview, one question still remained: Why start this campaign now? Nathan gave me two reasons. First, his involvement in ROTC would make it impossible for him to wait until after graduation to run because he would have at least another 4 years of service ahead of him. For his second reason, Nathan explained how he "wanted to make an impact on our generation now". Nathan plans on having a significant role in today's politics, while establishing a new mentality for other ambitious minds to adopt.

Nathan provided me with some key issues that he believes need attention. "Education" is an issue he believes needs immediate revision, "especially when taking into account the downward path of California's public education system the past decade". Having attended public institutions himself, Nathan was able to witness first-hand the many problems with our schools, including overcrowded classrooms, lack of funds, etc. Another topic Nathan wants to focus on is transportation, "specifically in the public sector". Nathan realizes that future transportation projects could lead to more job opportunities for people. At the same time, he also wants to put an end to the rising concern of over-crowded freeways that everyone can attest to. Lastly, Nathan wants to tackle the apparent drought/power crisis in California, with water consumption on an exponential rise and the controversial shut down of the Santa Onofre power plant.

To get more information on Nathaniel Tsai and his campaign, you can visit his website at or email him at

Monrovia's Everlert to Issue Its First Dividend

Monrovia's Everlert, Inc. will issue its first ever dividend, according to Darin Shaw, President and CEO. He said this "is certainly a healthy sign." The company makes ink cartridges in the U.S. postage meter industry.

- Brad Haugaard

Meet Monrovia Station Square Contractor

Meet the on-site construction contractor for the Station Square project. An opportunity to ask questions about the project. Thursday, Oct. 30, 5:30 p.m. at the Park & Ride Lot at 1601 S. Myrtle.

- Brad Haugaard

No Word on When Copper Still Grill Will Move In

Reader Darcy Roberts asks what is going on with the Copper Still Grill, which is supposed to be going in where the old Sam's Kabob used to be on Myrtle. Good question. I asked Monrovia Planning Division Manager Craig Jimenez, who says: "We have not heard anything from the business for quite a while. So I'm not sure what's going on."

- Brad Haugaard

Bond to Pay for Monrovia Infrastructure? - Maybe Not | Canyon Park | Swap Produce

~ While City Manager Oliver Chi confirms that there is a rumor that the Monrovia city government plans to ask voters to pass a bond measure to fund deferred maintenance on water, sewer, streets and related infrastructure, he said he has not heard any such proposal either from the City Council or from city staff. He added, "I don't believe we will need to go out for a bond" to fund improvements. However, he did say the Public Works Department is working on a master plan for the sewage and water systems, and curbs, gutters and sidewalks, but it hasn't reached the point of discussing how to pay for it. But when the discussion reaches that point, he said, there are options other than a bond, such as Measure R funds (from an existing countywide tax) and user fees.

~ Director of Community Services Tina Cherry reports that while the popular Haunted Hike, in Monrovia Canyon Park, is not being held this year, that decision "may be reconsidered." The problems with the hike, she said, are that it costs too much (the fees do not cover the expenses) and it is "not necessarily" aligned with preservation of the environment. She said the fishing line to hang up spooky stuff may not all get cleaned up.

~ Also, Cherry reports that Senior Park Ranger Hector Inzunza is taking a new job with Riverside County. Comment: Met him. Always seemed a very competent guy.

~ Gem City Images blog reports that the newest trail in Monrovia Canyon Park was dedicated today as the Cunningham Overlook Trail, after volunteer trail crew boss Ed Cunningham.

~ Produce in the Park, this Saturday, Nov. 1 9-11 a.m. in Library Park at the corner of Lime and Myrtle. Swap produce.

- Brad Haugaard

Update on Access to Monrovia's Hillside Wilderness Preserve

The new gate, shown here, has been temporarily removed.

I noticed the other day that the almost-new gate at the Ridgeside trailhead to the city's Hillside Wilderness Preserve, which you can see above, has been removed. This struck me as odd because it was only installed around early January of this year. The old gate, which you can see below, is now back in use, but can be swung open far enough to admit bikers and hikers, but not enough to admit cars or trucks.

In a meeting with City Manager Oliver Chi and Director of Community Services Tina Cherry, Cherry said the new gate was removed because it was crowding the space trucks need to turn around. She said a new-new gate will be installed after working out the best location for it with adjacent landowners and after redesigning it to force cyclists to slow down before they enter the narrow residential road. Also, she said, the "Road Closed" sign you see posted on the old gate has either been removed already or will be removed shortly. The road isn't closed, it's open.

Another factor, she said, is that while the city has an easement for the trail, the easement - apparently due to faulty surveying ages ago - is for a brief distance actually located alongside the road, just to the right of the road as you see it in the above pictures, over essentially impassable ground. That also needs to be resolved.

Chi said the issues with the Ridgeside trailhead should be resolved within a few months.

Cherry said homeowners at other end of the trail - which exits onto Coverleaf Drive but passes over private property which is currently blocked by a locked gate - have been working with city appraisers. She said the appraisers have completed their appraisals and the city is now ready to meet with the homeowners in an effort to come to an agreement that will open the Cloverleaf gate.

Chi said that while there may have been disagreements with those property owners in the past, "at least we're talking to one another." He added, "We need to resolve this today so people can enjoy it." Cherry added that, "We have the resources to have it done."

And if that is all a bit confusing, here's a map:

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Son Hits Dad in Face; Fake Gold Necklace Switch; Husband Locked Out - Wife Locked Out; Running Away to New York; Etc.

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 23-26 . - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Commercial Burglary / Grand Theft Auto / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspects Arrested 
On October 23 at 4:59 p.m., loss prevention from a business in the 1600 block of South Mountain called police to report a theft that had just occurred. The suspects, a male and female, took an expensive drill and other items, and fled in a vehicle with no plates. An officer observed a vehicle that matched the description in the area of Evergreen and Mountain. The vehicle was stopped without incident, and the investigation revealed the vehicle was stolen. The stolen property from the business was still in the vehicle, along with additional property that is believed to be stolen and a list of other store locations. Used hypodermic needs were also discovered. The suspects were arrested and taken into custody.

Domestic Battery – Suspect Arrested 
On October 23 at 7:55 p.m., officers were sent to a residence in the 600 block of West Foothill on the report of domestic battery. The male subject was determined to be the primary aggressor. He was arrested and taken into custody, where he was held pending his court appearance.

Battery – Suspect Arrested 
On October 23 at 8:35 p.m., an officer was dispatched to a residence in the 700 block of West Foothill on the report of a family disturbance. The investigation revealed the 15- year-old son was angry at his father and punched him in the face. The juvenile was arrested and taken into custody. The father sustained a minor injury to his face and declined medical treatment.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 23 at 10:50 p.m., an officer was on patrol in the area of California and Duarte when he observed a couple arguing in a vehicle that was stopped along the side of the road. The officer contacted the couple and found the engine was running and the driver was determined to be intoxicated. The driver was arrested and later released on a citation after sobering.

Burglary / Fraud Arrest – Suspect Arrested 
On October 24, at 4:41 p.m., police responded to a business in the 600 block of South Myrtle on the report of a burglary. Two male suspects entered a pawn shop and told the employees they wanted to sell a gold necklace. The employees confirmed it was real gold and offered to buy it. Right before they exchanged the necklace for the money, the suspects said they changed their mind and no longer wanted to sell it. The suspects briefly left the store, and then returned again stating they reconsidered the offer and now wanted to sell the necklace. The suspects handed a fake gold necklace to the clerk instead of the real one. The suspects were detained by officers and arrested for burglary and theft by false pretense.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 24 at 2:04 a.m., an officer was on patrol in the 100 block of West Olive when he stopped a motorist for a vehicle code violation. The motorist was determined to be intoxicated and was arrested. The motorist was taken to the Monrovia Jail, where she was held for sobering. She was later released on a citation.

Domestic Violence Arrest – Suspect Arrested 
On October 25 at 2:46 a.m., officers responded to a residence in the 1300 block of South Alta Vista regarding a report of domestic violence. The investigation revealed the wife locked her husband out of their apartment. The husband broke a window and climbed through it, sustaining a laceration to his arm. Upon entering the apartment, he grabbed his wife by the arms in an effort to pull her outside and lock her out. The wife sustained bruising on both of her arms. The husband was treated at the scene by Monrovia Fire Department paramedics for the laceration to his arm. He was then arrested and taken into custody. He had to be taken to a local hospital for further treatment of his arm.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 26 at 1:57 a.m., an officer on patrol in the area of Myrtle and Cherry stopped a motorist for a vehicle code violation. The motorist was determined to be driving under the influence and was arrested and taken into custody. The suspect was also found to have outstanding warrants for his arrest, which were added to his charges.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 26 at 2:14 a.m., an officer was on patrol in the area of Ivy and Cherry when he stopped a motorist for a vehicle code violation. The motorist was determined to be driving under the influence and was arrested. The motorist was taken into custody and held for sobering. She was later released on a citation. The motorist was also found to be on probation for DUI.

Runaway Juvenile 
On October 26 at 7:39 a.m., the father of a 14-year-old called police to report his son had run away. He was last seen in the home about 4:00 a.m. that morning, but was gone when his father woke up. The boy left his phone and computer behind, but took his skateboard. It is possible he is on his way to New York, but by an unknown means. A flyer was distributed and the subject was entered into the law enforcement missing persons system. The investigation is continuing.

Discussion of Ballot Propositions | McMansionization

~ A video presentation by Monrovia Rotary Club and League of Women Voters on the propositions on the 2014 ballot:

~ A group of Monrovians is petitioning to "Stop the McMansionization of Monrovia."

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Rotary, LWV on Ballot Propositions | 'McMansionization'

~ A video presentation by Monrovia Rotary Club and League of Women Voters on the propositions on the 2014 ballot:

~ A group of Monrovians is petitioning to "Stop the McMansionization of Monrovia."

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia's Helping Hands Thrift Store Celebrates First Anniversary With Sale

To celebrate its one year anniversary, Helping Hands Store and Donation Center (925 W. Foothill) is holding a celebration this Saturday, Oct. 25, from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Free food, beverages, and raffles every hour and 55% percent off everything. Source: press release

- Brad Haugaard

Confusion About Effect of Making Mountains Into a National Monument

Confusion about what it means for parts of the San Gabriel Mountains to be a National Monument ( ): Possible effect on water supplies if San Gabriel River is included in the area (and from the White House map, it appears to be included), land usage may be "altered," possible new fees.

Comment: As I've noted, it does not seem to directly affect Monrovia, as the wretchedly small-scale map released by the White House ( ) seems to indicate the south border of the National Monument is the Rincon Road ridgeline far north of the city.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting Ceremony

The annual Christmas tree lighting and parade will be held on Thursday, December 4 starting at 6 p.m. for the tree lighting at Library Park, on the corner of Myrtle and Lime. Then the parade will begin at 7 p.m., traveling north on Myrtle from Chestnut to Palm. The theme is "Home for the Holidays" and is sponsored by the Monrovia Old Town merchants.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Beats South Pas 32-6

Monrovia over South Pasadena in football.

- Brad Haugaard

Lunch at Pho on Lemon

Lunch at Pho on Lemon, just east of Myrtle on Lemon. Got the chicken curry for $8.50 and an iced tea for 99 cents. A generous amount of chicken. 

- Brad Haugaard

All Street Crossings Finished for Gold Line | Native Plant Sale

~ The Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority announced today that has completed all 14 street-level crossings for the project. The final grade crossing work, at Mountain Ave, was completed this week - three months ahead of schedule. The Construction Authority announced earlier that it had also completed all the track for the project.

~ Native Plant Sale in Library Park Nov. 15

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Backyard Bears Forum

A video report on the Bears in My Backyard event in Monrovia.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Pet Food Drive | Make a Difference Day | Delayed Graduation | Holiday Brunch | Dia de los Muertos | Miravet

~ Pet food drive this Saturday, Oct. 25, at Library Park. Unopened cans and bags of dog and cat food. Call 256-8187 for details. Hosted by Volunteer Center of San Gabriel Valley and Foothill Unity Center.

~ Make a Difference Day volunteers meeting this Saturday at Library Park for community clean-up projects in Monrovia and the valley. Contact Penny Arroyo to register:

~ Monrovian Toshio Asano finally got his Associate Degree from Citrus College. He missed graduation because he was interned during World War II.

~ Monrovia's Maryknoll Sisters will hold a holiday brunch, bake sale and boutique Nov. 9 from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.. Adults $15, children under 12, $7. 300 Norumbega Drive. For information call 358-1825.

~ Dia de los Muertos, Sunday Nov. 2 from 6 to 10 p.m. at Live Oak Memorial Park, 200 East Duarte Road.

~ Monrovia water polo player Jacob Miravet.

- Brad Haugaard

Sidewalk, Curb Work Beginning Around Monrovia's Station Square

Construction on sidewalks, curbs and gutters around new Station Square area Monday, Oct. 27, to Friday Oct. 31. Work hours 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Work is on Duarte (between California and Magnolia), Pomona (between Myrtle and Magnolia), Magnolia (between Evergreen and railroad crossing), Primrose (south of Evergreen).

All lanes are expected to remain open to traffic, but drivers may expect temporary re-routing of lanes. Street parking will be limited during construction on these streets. Pedestrian traffic will also be re-routed when necessary for safety.

Street parking restrictions and pedestrian detours are expected to begin on Myrtle Ave starting November 3.

Source: City of Monrovia press release

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: 911 Center Upgraded; Red Ribbon Week

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 20-22 2014 . - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 378 service events, During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 378 service events, resulting in 62 investigations.

Monrovia Police Department 9-1-1 Communications Center Upgrade Completed 
On October 14, 2014, the upgrade to the Monrovia Police Communications 9-1-1 Center was completed. The upgrade included a new, state-of-the-art 9-1-1 phone system and new ergonomic dispatch consoles and chairs that were funded through the California Office of Emergency Management 9-1- 1 Program Office. In addition, the radio system was also upgraded. The Monrovia Police Department would like to thank the following police department and city employees for their hard work and extra effort given to help complete this upgrade: Jim Emett, Jeff Warmuth, Tim Blackburn, Shawn Cantine, Manny Garcia, and all of the Monrovia police dispatchers for their assistance during the design and equipment selection process.

Red Ribbon Week Reminds Parents to Talk to Your Kids About Drugs 
During the week of October 23 through 31, the Monrovia Police Department will celebrate Red Ribbon Week 2014 by wearing red ribbons on their uniforms. Red Ribbon Week is a national campaign to raise awareness about substance abuse among our youth and our communities. In 1985, DEA Agent Enrique, “Kiki,” Camarena was murdered by a drug cartel. To honor his memory and to show support that we will continue the fight against illegal drugs, Monrovia Police Officers will wear red ribbons as part of our uniform. Monrovia schools have passed out red bracelets to children to encourage kids to support the fight against illegal drugs, alcohol, and tobacco use.

Monrovia-Based Upper San Gabriel Water District Declares 'Water Emergency'

The Upper San Gabriel Water District, which is based in Monrovia and serves the city, among others, yesterday declared a "water emergency" because, among other things, water levels have reached "all time historic lows." Further, it demands the Metropolitan Water District "treat the Upper District fairly, consistently, and in the same manner that it treats all other member districts." You can see the whole resolution here, starting on page 15:

- Brad Haugaard

Man Pleads Not Guilty to Strangling Girlfriend in Monrovia

Joel Velasquez, accused of strangling his girlfriend in Monrovia, pleaded not guilty in Pasadena Superior Court.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Church Moving to Make Room for Wine Village

Calvary Chapel Monrovia will be moving. A staff report at the City Council meeting Tuesday said the church - near Myrtle on Evergreen on the south side of the 210, next to the Chevron station - is leasing its property from the city and will have to move to make way for the wine village the city has planned. The church's lease expires at the end of this month.

- Brad Haugaard

Battle Creek to Film in Monrovia Canyon Park

The television show Battle Creek apparently really likes Monrovia Canyon Park. Diane Delmatoff, in the Community Development Department, reports that the show will be filming in Canyon Park again on Thursday.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Council: Wine Village; Street Fair; Outage

At its meeting tonight the Monrovia City Council ...

~ Voted to approve an wine village down near the soon-to-come train station. Several representatives of CIBA Real Estate, which represents an alternative proposal, a hotel, argued that the process was not transparent. 

~ Asked staff to see if Family Festival Productions would accept a shorter contract for putting on the Friday Night Festival so the city can get proposals from more companies about putting on the festival and other events throughout the year. 

~ Heard a spokesman for Southern California Edison say the company is sorry about a Friday night power outage that took some merchants off line at 10 p.m. instead of midnight, when it was scheduled. Miscommunication, he said.
-Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Halloween Home

One of the more dramatic Halloween homes I've seen in town. 223 N. Canyon.

Brad Haugaard

Inauthentic Mexican Restaurant Opening in Monrovia

Devon Restaurant, on the north side of Lemon near Myrtle, has closed and is being replaced with Bull Taco, "inauthentic Mexican." Love it! I think most ethnic restaurants are inauthentic, and probably better for it, but nice to see someone just come out and say it. Put my nose to the window and looks like it's just days from opening. Thanks to Doran for the tip. 

- Brad Haugaard 

Evacuation of Monrovia's Canyon Oaks HS | Police Promoted

~ An ordor in the chemistry lab at Canyon Oaks High School forced an evacuation of the building today ( ). Update: It was pepper spray:

~ Mayor Mary Ann Lutz reports that three Monrovia police have been promoted: Nick Manfredi - Lieutenant; Heath Harvey - Sergeant; Rob Wilken - Sergeant.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Tricked Out of Her Car; Meth and a BB Gun; Robbery; Etc.

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for Highlighted Activity for October 16-19 . - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Stolen Vehicle 
On October 16 at 7:32 a.m., a vehicle was reported stolen in the 400 block of Royal Oaks. The victim parked her 1985 Honda Accord in front of her residence at 6:15 a.m. She locked and secured the vehicle. When she went outside at 7:30 a.m., she found her vehicle was gone. The investigation is continuing.

Warrants - Suspect Arrested 
On October 16 at 11:47 p.m., an officer responded to a business in the 400 block of West Huntington regarding a subject causing a disturbance. The subject was located and was found to have two outstanding warrants for his arrest from the Monrovia Police Department; he was arrested taken into custody.

Grand Theft Auto / Vehicle Recovered 
On October 17 at 12:33 p.m., a vehicle was stolen from the 900 block of West Foothill. The victim is an elderly female who was attempting to park her vehicle in a handicap stall. She exited her vehicle to remove a cart that was blocking the stall. A male subject that was standing next to her vehicle eating ice cream jumped into the vehicle and drove away. Monrovia police responded along with the Foothill Air Support Team helicopter. An area check was made for the vehicle, but it was not located. The vehicle was later recovered. It was found parked on a street in Pasadena. The victim's purse was recovered, but cash was taken. The suspect in this case is described as a male Hispanic, wearing a blue shirt, jeans, and carrying a black backpack. The suspect had some facial hair. The investigation is continuing.

On October 17 at 11:22 a.m., an officer responded to a business in the 1600 block of South Mountain regarding a theft that had just occurred. Loss prevention witnessed the suspect taking items without paying. When security confronted the suspect, he returned the property, but he refused to walk back to the office. The suspect then pulled out a pair of needle-nose pliers and advanced on the security officer. The security officer was able to push the suspect away. The suspect and a female subject then fled in a white Toyota Tacoma. The suspect is described as a male Hispanic in his 30's, shaved head with tattoos. He was with a white female in her 30's. The investigation is continuing.

Possession of a Controlled Substance / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia / Exhibiting an Imitation Firearm / Driving on a Suspended License / Warrants – Suspect Arrested 
On October 17 at 6:31 p.m., a suspect motorist reportedly brandished a firearm at another motorist in the area of California and Hurstview. Police arrived and located the vehicle, and the suspect was detained. Investigation revealed the suspect brandished a BB gun at the victim in an incident of road rage. The suspect was also found to be in possession of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. He was driving on a suspended license and had three warrants. He was arrested and taken into custody.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol – Suspect Arrested 
On October 19 at 1:30 a.m., an officer was on patrol near the intersection of Chestnut and Alta Vista when he stopped a motorist for a traffic violation. The motorist was determined to be under the influence of alcohol; the driver was arrested and taken into custody.

Robbery / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspect Arrested 
On October 19 at 3:07 p.m., a business in the 500 block of West Huntington called to report a robbery that just occurred. A female suspect was attempting to hide items in her purse, return other items and pay for some items; she was detained by loss prevention. When she realized they were calling the police, she hit a store employee who was trying to keep her from leaving and attempted to get away. An officer arrived and she was arrested. A used methamphetamine pipe was located in her purse, which was added to her charges.

Residential Burglary 
On October 19 at 6:41 p.m., a residential burglary was reported in the 1600 block of South Mayflower. The victim left her residence earlier and returned to find the side door of her garage ajar and property taken. A bicycle and golf clubs were missing. The investigation is continuing.

Monrovia Power Outage - More than 6,000 Affected

Southern California Edison reports power outage in Monrovia, affecting 6,099 customers. They're analyzing the problem and estimated restoration time is still being determined. I've seen reports of outages at Monroe School, on Primrose and Lemon, West Olive, Encino south of Huntington, Scenic, Ivy, Duarte Road and Mayflower, Myrtle south of Lime, parts of Huntington Oaks Shopping Center, etc.

Update: SCE now has two outage reports for Monrovia, indicating that now only about 102 customers are affected.

Update 2: SCE hopeful most of the problem will be fixed by 5 p.m.

Update 3: It was caused by a squirrel, now deceased.

- Brad Haugaard

'Meet Me In St. Louis' at Monrovia's Taylor Performing Arts Center

The Taylor Performing Arts Center will present its fourth professional production, Meet Me in St. Louis, on Nov. 20., 21, 22, and 23 for five performances only.

Travel back to the turn of the 20th Century in St. Louis where everyone is talking about the World’s Fair coming to town! Memorable songs include "The Trolley Song," "The Boy Next Door" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas."

Patrick Garcia, Director of Performing Arts for Monrovia Unified School District and the Producing, Artistic Director, said Monrovia resident Marjory Zuk will play the lead role of Esther Smith and Bradoaks Elementary School student Samantha Rily will play Tottie Smith.

Advanced tickets may be purchased at Monrovia Travel (401 South Myrtle) or
at or by calling 800-838-3006.

General admission tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for students and children age 12 and younger. Discounts for groups of 10 or more and for seniors age 65 and older. VIP tickets, center section, rows 2 through 6 are available for $35. Rush tickets in the first row are $10 and will be sold on a first come first served basis before each performance. Tickets may also be purchased at the Taylor Performing Arts Center beginning one hour before show time.

The Taylor Performing Arts Center at Monrovia High School, at 845 West Colorado Boulevard.

- Brad Haugaard

Backyard Bears in Monrovia | Unity Center Food Drive | Job Search Workshop

~ Bears in your Backyard Public Safety Forum, Thursday, Oct. 23, 7 p.m. at the Monrovia Police Department, 140 E. Lime. Monrovia PD, California Department of Fish and Wildlife and Athens Services. Contact Assemblymember Chris Holden's office for more information: 351-1917.

~ Foothill Unity Center is seeking donations of food, turkeys, funds, food drives and volunteer time for its Thanksgiving food distribution ion Monday, Nov. 24, at Ayers Hall at the Arboretum in Arcadia, and for and its Holiday Distribution in December. Funds may be donated online at Food and checks may be dropped off weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 415 W. Chestnut Ave.

~ 21st Century Job Search Workshop, Nov. 15, 10 a.m. to noon, Monrovia Public Library Community Room. Learn best places to search, technology and the job search. Led by Angelina Pride, continuing education representative from Mt. San Antonio College. For more information contact Rebecca Elder at

- Brad Haugaard

Meet New Monrovia City Manager

Community lunch in Library Park. Bring lunch and meet the new city manager, Oliver Chi. Oct. 29, 11:30-1:30.

- Brad Haugaard

History of Monrovia Street Names | Gold Line Track Complete

~ Fascinating history of Monrovia street names from this Monrovia Library website. Did you know Hillcrest used to be Banana Avenue? Lots more here:

~ A Gold Line construction worker hammers in the final e-clip for the Gold Line track to Azusa.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Rolls Over Temple City in Football

Monrovia has big win over Temple City - 56 to 6.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Schools: More Transferring Out Than In; Declining Enrollment; Etc.

At its Oct. 22 meeting (agenda: ) the Monrovia School Board will ...

~ Hear a report that says more students asked to transfer out of the district (332 for 2014-15) compared to students asking to transfer in (220). Plymouth Elementary has been particularly hard hit this year, with 81 students transferring out compared to an average of 21.25 transferring out for the other elementary schools. It appears the "Incoming Permits" table is either messed up or I need more coffee, but it seems that there was either only 1 request to transfer in to Plymouth, or 13 requests to transfer in.

~ Hear a report that projects continued enrollment losses at least until the 2016-17 school year. Here is an enrollment summary: 2011-12, 5,970 students; 12-13, 5,947; 13-14, 5,988; 14-15, 5,903; 15-16 projected, 5,804; 16-17 projected, 5,681.

~ Hear a report on student achievement. (Unfortunately, no detail provided in this staff report: )

- Brad Haugaard

Join the Christmas Chorus at Monrovia's First Presbyterian Church

If you've ever wanted to sing Handel's Messiah, here's your chance to sing parts of Messiah and other Christmas music. Dr. Peter Green, Chair, Visual and Performing Arts Division, Professor of Music, Glendale College, will conduct the Monrovia First Presbyterian Church Chorus with orchestra on Sunday, Dec. 14, 7:30-8:30 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, corner of Foothill and Myrtle. If you want to sing, come to rehersals, every Thursday night 7:30-8:30 at the church. Bring a friend. For more information, contact Dr. Peter Green, Music Director, 358-3297 Ext. 205 or Source: press release

- Brad Haugaard

Lunch at Philly's Best

Lunch at Philly's Best at Huntington and Fifth. Got the Mushroom Steak sandwich ($6.99) and iced tea ($1.99). Simple but tasty. 

- Brad Haugaard

Duarte Road and Mountain Intersection Closed Tonight

The entire intersection at Mountain and Duarte Road will be closed tonight beginning at 9 p.m. and ending Saturday morning at 9 a.m. as part of the Gold Line light rail project. Crews will be realigning the traffic lanes to the final configuration during the closure and re-striping the pavement. No additional full closures are anticipated.

- Brad Haugaard

Creative Writing for Family, Friends of Vets at Monrovia Library

The Monrovia Public Library is offering a Creative Writing Workshop for Family and Friends of Veterans, Wednesday, Oct. 22, 6 p.m. at the Monrovia Public Library Community Room. Bring an object or picture that means something special to you in relation to the veteran in your life. Pen and paper will be provided. Workshop is open to adults and mature teens. Contact Rebecca Elder at 256-8268 for more information. The library also offers resources for vets, here ( ).

Comment: Since this program is funded by Cal Humanities, with a goal "to increase public understanding for those who have served in the U.S. Military as well as how best we can support the process of reincorporating veterans into our community," it got me thinking. As a vet, what do I think vets would like? Well, a) A job. b) An occasional thank you. c) The government fulfilling its obligations to vets (See VA hospitals as an example of how not to do this.) d) An occasional free beer. And what wouldn't vets like? Unless he's laid up in the hospital, anything that smacks of, "Oh, you poor dear! Let me help you with that." Any other vets have thoughts?

- Brad Haugaard

Investment in Monrovia's Huntington Oaks

$71 Million investment in Monrovia's Huntington Oaks Shopping Center.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Council: Wine Plaza Tuscan Village Planned; More Efficient Meetings; Veterans; Family Festival; Last Best Offer

At its next meeting (main agenda: ), on Tuesday, Oct. 21, the Monrovia City Council will ...

~ Consider approving a $2,225,000.00 sale of property located at 123 and 137 West Pomona Avenue to Wine of the Month Club for "a Wine Plaza Tuscan Village, which is a conglomerate of wine ordering, wine blending production, wine shipping, wine purchasing, wine tasting, food and beverage sales and consumption, retail related to food and beverage production, and other food and beverage related uses or other shops consistent with the atmosphere of a European village marketplace," etc.

~ Consider recommendations to make city meetings more efficient. They are: 1) Do all proclamations and presentations on first meeting of the month, begin that meeting at 6:30 p.m. 2) End meetings at 11 p.m. and carry over all other items until the next meeting unless the meeting is extended by a majority vote. 3. Enforce the current 5-minute time limit for speakers.

~ Honor local veterans:

~ Approve an agreement with Family Festival Productions, Inc., for production of the Friday Night Family Festival in Old Town through 2017, with two one-year options to renew.

~ Impose the city's "Last, Best and Final Offer" to the Monrovia Firefighters Association.

- Brad Haugaard

Street Construction Around Monrovia's Station Square

There will be work from October 22, 2014 to May 2015 on the area around Station Square (Duarte Rd., Magnolia Ave., Pomona Ave., Primrose Ave., Evergreen Ave., Myrtle Ave. and California Ave). Traffic on these streets will be reduced to one lane in each direction or closed at times. When full street closures or changes on the original lane closures are required by the construction activity, a notice will be provided to residents and businesses at least 48 hours in advance. Expect delays. City of Monrovia press release.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Casing Cars | Wallet Stolen from Unlocked Car

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 13-15 2014 . - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 376 service events, During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 376 service events, resulting in 72 investigations.

Warrant / Receiving Stolen Property / Petty Theft / Theft of Mail – Suspect Arrested 
On October 14 at 5:19 p.m., an officer on patrol in the area of Madison and Foothill observed a male subject on a bicycle acting suspicious. The officer watched as the subject was looking into parked vehicles and then looking around to see if he was being watched. The subject was contacted and found to have an outstanding warrant for his arrest. A search of the subject’s backpack revealed bank checks and identification with someone else’s name on them. The checks and identification were found to be stolen. The suspect was arrested and taken into custody.

Theft From an Unlocked Vehicle 
On October 14 at 5:48 p.m., a male subject called police to report his wallet was stolen from his unlocked car in the 600 block of West Foothill. The investigation is continuing.

Curious Facts about the Gold Line

Curious facts about the Gold Line, like: How many space shuttles would it take to carry all the concrete ties into space?

- Brad Haugaard

Opera Animata Canceled

The first two performances of the Opera Animata season, that was to have begun on Oct. 17-18 at Monrovia's St. Luke Church, have been canceled "due to unforeseen circumstances."

- Brad Haugaard

Work to Begin Soon on Improvements Around Monrovia's Station Square Project

Public improvements for the Station Square project (around the new train station) will begin in mid October and will include "modernization and beautification of medians and public right-of-ways of several streets ... as well as landscape areas east and west of Myrtle Avenue along the 210 Freeway frontages and on the underpass. Details:

- Brad Haugaard

Bone Marrow Match Test at Monrovia High

Vicki Barstow, 45-year-old wife and mother of two Monrovia High students, writes to say that she has Acute Myeloid Leukemia and needs a bone marrow transplant, but needs a match. There will be a bone marrow test sponsored by "Be the Match," this Friday, Oct. 17, at the homecoming game at Monrovia High School from 5:30-8:30 p.m. The donor test (you must be 18-44) is an easy mouth swab. Details:

- Brad Haugaard

What 'National Monument' Designation Means for Monrovia

This fact sheet from the White House ( gives a bit of detail on what it means that a big chunk of the San Gabriel Mountains is now a national monument. Here are a few points I find interesting for Monrovia:

- There is a map that is way too small to study detail, but it seems to show that the southern border of the monument is along Rincon Road, which is an east-west crestline dirt road several miles above the north edge of Monrovia.

- I had thought national monuments were all administered by the Park Service, but apparently they can be administered by a variety of federal agencies, and this one will be administered by the Forest Service, as it is now.

- Various charitable organizations have pledged about $3.5 million for the monument area.

Comment: Honestly, I'm not really sure what has changed. As part of the National Forest, all the things that will be protected now were protected before, and there doesn't seem to be a dime more in federal funds as a result of this (though it's nice some charities are chipping in), and the Forest Service, which was in charge before, is still in charge.

- Brad Haugaard

How to Lay Train Track - Gold Line Construction Video

To celebrate the near completion of track-laying for the Gold Line to Azusa, the Gold Line folks have released a video documenting the construction of the line. Gives a nice glimpse into the technical details of laying track ... in case you ever need to know ;-).

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia's World Vision Partners with Grundfos to Provide 2 Million with Clean Water

Monrovia's Christian relief and development agency, World Vision, is partnering with Grundfos, the world's leading pump manufacturer, to provide clean water to 2 million people in sub-Saharan Africa over the next five years. World Vision is the largest non-governmental provider of clean water in the developing world.

- Brad Haugaard

Opera Animata Opens Second Season in Monrovia

UPDATE: Canceled. 

Opera Animata kicks off a new season on Oct. 17-18 with a madcap mix of arias and antics spoofing the beauty pageant scene. Performances start at 8 p.m. in Swan Hall at St. Luke's Church in Monrovia. In a world where opportunities for classical singers are few, five female opera singers compete in a beauty pageant in hopes of advancing their careers. When the contestants are tested by a disgruntled accompanist, capricious judges, and fiendish backstage workers, they must persevere or go back to searching the Gigs section of Craigslist. Presale tickets $25 at and at the door for $30. Student/senior tickets for $20. For more information visit Source: press release.

- Brad Haugaard

Haunted Hikes Gone for Good? | 'Geo Listening' to Monrovia High Students | Taste of Old Town

~ Gem City Images says the Haunted Hikes in Monrovia Canyon Park have been cancelled and appear to be dead for good.

~ Monrovia High implements "Geo Listening," monitoring students' postings on public media:

~ Taste of Old Town Monrovia October 19 in Old Town from 5-8 p.m. Advance Tickets $50; $60 at the door. Food and spirits from more than 40 vendors, plus live music.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Takes the Whole Cash Register; Texting While Driving? Peeing on People; Lost and Found; Etc.

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 9-12 . - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Armed Robbery 
On October 9 at 3:36 p.m., an armed robbery occurred at a business in the 400 block of West Foothill. The suspect entered the business, brandished a knife and demanded money from the register. The suspect began hitting the register in an attempt to open it. When the register did not open, he grabbed it and ripped it away from the counter. He then ran west from the location. An extensive search was made for the suspect and items from the register were found discarded in the 700 block of West Foothill. The suspect was not located. The suspect is described as a male African American, approximately 6'5" tall, medium build, wearing multiple layers of clothing and gloves. The investigation is continuing.

Stolen Vehicle 
On October 10 at 8:06 a.m., a vehicle was reported stolen from the 300 block of South Primrose. The victim parked her white Toyota Camry in her carport the day before. When she returned to her vehicle in the morning, the car was gone. The investigation is continuing.

Stolen Vehicle Recovered 
On October 10 at 2:41 p.m., a stolen vehicle was located in the 900 block of West Walnut. The registered owner was contacted and the vehicle was released to the owner. The investigation is continuing.

Hit & Run Traffic Collision – Suspect Arrested 
On October 10 at 10:02 p.m., an officer was dispatched to the 700 block of West Colorado to a hit and run traffic collision where the suspect had hit a fence on a property. The officer arrived within minutes and stopped the suspect vehicle as it was attempting to leave the scene; the driver was detained. The suspect and his vehicle were positively identified and he was arrested. Although a fence was damaged in front of the residence, the house did not sustain any structural damage and no injuries were reported. There was no evidence of the suspect being under the influence of drugs or alcohol; the suspect was believed to have been texting on his cell phone just prior to the collision.

Battery with Urine / Urinating in Public / Resisting a Peace Officer by Means of Threats or Violence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 13 at 10:19 p.m., an officer responded to a business in the 400 block of South Myrtle regarding a subject causing a disturbance. The suspect was intoxicated and intentionally urinated on two female victims that were seated at an outdoor patio table. When the officer approached, the suspect kicked the officer and threatened to kill him. The suspect was arrested and taken into custody. The officer was not injured as a result of being kicked by the suspect.

Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspect Arrested 
On October 10 at 11:55 a.m., a disturbance was reported in the 800 block of West Walnut. An officer arrived and saw a subject throw an object down on the ground. Further investigation revealed the object was a methamphetamine pipe. The officer arrested the suspect for possession of the pipe.

Public Intoxication / Possession of a Controlled Substance – Suspect Arrested 
On October 11 at 2:11 a.m., an intoxicated subject entered the police lobby with a bloody lip and claimed he was the victim of an assault that occurred near a night club in the 300 block of South Myrtle. Further investigation revealed he was involved in a fight with his friend in the 100 block of East Lime. The officer located the friend near the front of the police station. The friend was also intoxicated and was found to be in possession of methamphetamine. Both suspects were arrested and taken into custody.

Critical Missing Person Located 
On October 11 at 3:20 p.m., the family of a fifteen-year-old, autistic boy contacted Monrovia Park Rangers about their son being missing. Their son was hiking with a group when he ran ahead to a trailhead where they were going to have lunch and went missing. He was dressed in light clothing with a hat and backpack. He had several bottles of water and some snacks, but did not have a cell phone and was not familiar with the area. The Foothill Air Support Team helicopter was immediately dispatched to the area and Sierra Madre Search and Rescue was contacted. Sierra Madre Search and Rescue located the boy about two miles from the location he was last seen. His parents were brought to him, and he was checked by paramedics and determined to be in good condition.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 12 at 1:53 a.m., an officer was on patrol near the intersection of Myrtle and Lemon when he stopped a motorist for a traffic violation. The motorist was determined to be under the influence of alcohol; the driver was arrested and taken into custody.

Gold Line Track Laying Should be Complete Later this Month

The Foothill Gold Line from Pasadena to Azusa is on schedule to complete laying all 28 miles of light rail track needed for the 11.5-mile project. There will be a Track Completion Ceremony Oct. 18 to commemorate this achievement. Source: Gold Line Construction Authority press release

- Brad Haugaard

Will Aztec Hotel Reopen in 2015? Halloween Activities

~ Will the historic Aztec Hotel reopen next year? Also, some history of recent complications regarding the hotel.

~ Halloween activities in Library Park, Friday, Oct. 31, 3-6 p.m. Costume contest and parade, dog costume contest, library stories, toddler area, activity booths, arts and crafts, parachute games, photo booths. Also, trick-or-treat in Old Town, 5-7 p.m.

~ Mayflower PTA is sponsoring a Fall Film Festival, Oct. 25, 4-8 p.m. Games, food, face painting, costume contest, pumpkins, movie and cake walk. At Mayflower School, 210 N Mayflower.

- Brad Haugaard

Free Jazz Thursdays at Monrovia's Doubletree Hotel

Drummer and leader of the jazz band, Martini Five-O, David Walker, writes to say the band plays a free concert every Thursday, 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in Monrovia. He says: "Our repertoire focuses on classic jazz standards from The Great American Songbook. The concert series at the Doubletree (which started in July and will continue indefinitely) is called 'Standards Under the Stars' (it takes place outdoors, near the pool and fireplace). The band is also putting on free jazz concerts at the Doubletree on Halloween and on the day of the Breeders Cup (10/31 and 11/01).

- Brad Haugaard

Boy Lost in Monrovia Canyon Park Found Safe

A young teen boy with autism who had been lost in Monrovia Canyon Park has been found safe.

- Brad Haugaard

Art, Music and Books in Monrovia's Library Park

Art and books for sale in Library Park, today and tomorrow, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.. Picked up a paperback for 50 cents.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Over San Marino in Football

Monrovia over San Marino in football, 48-42. Full story here.

- Brad Haugaard

Six Old Homes to be Demolished? | Books and Art | Junk Drive for Centre Stage

~ Monrovia Historic Preservation Group is concerned that at the next Historic Preservation Commission are applications for the demolition of six pre-1940s homes.

~ Friends of the Monrovia Library Annual Book Sale, and Arts Event at the Library and Library Park, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow and Sunday. Celebrate the arts with work by local artists, including Rick Kess; live art demonstrations, live music; outdoor dining and food trucks.

~ Junk Drive to benefit Centre Stage non-profit theater company. Donate household items, clothing, toys, etc. to Goodwill this Saturday, Oct. 11 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Donation point is Monrovia Presbyterian Church, Foothill and Myrtle. Donations are tax-deductible. Items will go to Goodwill Industries, which will in turn provide funds to Centre Stage for its 2015 season.

- Brad Haugaard

Obama Names San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument

Obama has named the San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument today.

Comment: As I said before, I'm not so much upset at the mountains being made a national monument as I am upset that there seemed to be almost no information disseminated about what the designation would mean, and therefore no opportunity to comment intelligently about it. Oh well, I guess we will find out now.

Also, I was curious about an advocacy group called San Gabriel Mountains Forever that has been quoted in the LA Times, Star-News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Wall Street Journal and other media (see Google News results: ). I looked up the domain name,, on (see it here: ), and it turns out it is registered to Campaign for America's W[ilderness] based in Washington D.C., and now part of the Pew Charitable Funds.

So no, it may have appeared to be so, but it is not a local group.

- Brad Haugaard

Lunch at The Burger Shack

Lunch at The Burger Shack at Foothill and Madison yesterday. Got a bacon avocado burger for $5.49 and a lemonade for $1.89. Messy good. A four-napkin meal.

- Brad Haugaard

Smart Gardening Workshop in Monrovia

Smart Gardening Workshop at Recreation Park (600 S. Shamrock), Saturday, Nov. 8 at 9:30 a.m.

- Brad Haugaard

Choral Company to Hold 'Supernatural Evening of Song' in Monrovia

San Gabriel Valley Choral Company will hold "A Supernatural Evening of Song" on Saturday, Oct. 25 at 7:30 p.m. at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, featuring Daemon Irrepit by Gyorgy Orban, Valley of Bones by Nick Strimple, and Sure on This Shining Night by Morten Lauridsen, plus solo and small ensemble performances by SGVCC members and staff, including Artistic Director Zanaida Robles. Proceeds benefit SGVCCs instrumentalist fund. Tickets $15 in advance, $20 at the door. For tickets or make a donation, go to, or mail checks, payable to "SGVCC," to 101 E. Foothill Blvd., Monrovia, CA 91016.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Bear Seminar | Running Back Lawrence Spicer

~ There will be a free "Bears in Your Backyard" safey forum this Oct. 23 from 7-8 p.m. at the Monrovia Public Library Community Room. There will be experts from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Monrovia Police, and Athens Services, along with Assembly member Chris Holden.

~ Feature story on Monrovia running back Lawrence Spicer.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Woman Not On Meds; Too Many Washing Machines; Meth

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 6-8 . - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 462 service events, During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 462 service events, resulting in 72 investigations.

Mental Evaluation 
On October 7 at 9:14 p.m., a female subject who lives in the 300 block of North Encinitas Avenue phoned police several times to report she needed assistance. As officers were on the way, a male subject at the same location phoned to report the female subject was hitting him and his face was bleeding. He reported that the female subject is supposed to be on medication that she was not taking. When officers arrived, they observed the female being very aggressive toward the male subject. The male subject had visible injuries and was treated on scene by Monrovia Fire Department paramedics. The female was taken to a hospital, where she was held for mental evaluation.

On October 8 at 3:11 p.m., an officer responded to a business in the 200 block of East Foothill regarding an assault that just occurred. The victim told the officer she was using numerous washing machines when another subject inside the location became confrontational with her over the amount of machines she was using. Several words were exchanged and both subjects started fist fighting. They were separated by other patrons in the business. Both subjects signed a refusal to prosecute.

Possession of a Controlled Substance / Warrant – Suspects Arrested 
On October 8 at 8:58 p.m., a manager of a business called to report a suspicious subject knocking on doors in the 900 block of South Fifth. The subject was looking for a person who had rented a room at the location. On our way to the location the subject went to the front desk and gave them the name of the person he was looking for and then he left. The name of the person given to management had rented two rooms that day and paid cash for both. Officers went to the rooms, at the request of management, to make sure everything was okay. Upon checking the first room none of the subjects were the person who had rented the room. However, two of the subjects had several items inside the room and appeared to be staying there. During our investigation we discovered a sizable amount of methamphetamine, packaging material and cash. Two subjects were arrested, one for possession of a controlled substance for sales and the other for a warrant.

Police Chief Says Vote No on 47 | Monrovia vs. San Marino

~ Monrovia Police Chief Jim Hunt urges voters to vote no on Proposition 47.

~ Sportswriters talk about the Monrovia vs. San Marino game. Video:

- Brad Haugaard

Representative Judy Chu Confirms Obama Will Make San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument

Representative Judy Chu confirmed today (Oct. 8) that President Obama will declare 346,000 acres of national forest land in the San Gabriel Mountains to be the nation's newest national monument.

Two days ago (Oct. 6), Chu distributed a press release titled, "Rep. Chu Continues to Invite Stakeholders to Offer Input on National Monument"

Comment: Just two days ago Chu was inviting people to submit input as if she was carefully pondering all viewpoints. But today we learn it is a done deal. Obama is going to sign it and clearly there was no intention to listen to the so-called "input" she solicited two days ago. Further, while there was detail released on her proposed National Recreation Area, I don't think there was any detail released about the scope of this National Monument. Who can tell whether it is good or bad? It was just shoved through.

- Brad Haugaard

Halloween Spiders in Old Monrovia

Halloween spiders decorate Old Town Monrovia.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia's AeroVironment Wins Contract for Navy Drone

Monrovia's AeroVironment has won a $19 million contract to develop a new carrier-based drone for the Navy.

- Brad Haugaard

Holden Reports to Monrovia Council on State of the State

Assemblyman Chris Holden, who represents Monrovia, gave a state of the state report to the City Council tonight. (I think the council is looking at a monitor on the wall, not dissing Holden.) City of Monrovia photo.

- Brad Haugaard

Will Obama Sign National Monument Order Friday in San Dimas?

According to a press release from Arturo Alas, who is running for Congress in the 32nd District (which includes most of Monrovia), "President Obama is reportedly coming to Bonelli Park in San Dimas, CA on Friday, October 10th in order to sign the National Monument proposal." This would make the San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument.

The press release adds that "Individuals and businesses from the community plan to make an appearance in order to reinforce the importance of their concerns and make known their opposition to the plan."

Comment: Hmm. That "reportedly" makes me a bit doubtful...

Update: More on Obama declaring San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument. Still unconfirmed, though.

- Brad Haugaard

Suspect Barricaded in Monrovia House

Barricaded suspect in Monrovia home. 2300 block of California Avenue. Suspected of assault.

Update: Suspect arrested

- Brad Haugaard

Tonight in Monrovia: Another Space Station Flyover, and Total Lunar Eclipse

If you missed the flyover of the International Space Station last night, Jane Houston Jones of Monrovia's Old Town Sidewalk Astronomers says you have another chance: "Tonight Tuesday the 7th, look for a 6 minute long ISS pass beginning at 7:03 p.m., reaching a height of 74 degrees, nearly overhead! It appears in the SW and disappears in the NE."

Also, she says, there will be a total lunar eclipse on Wednesday morning. If the sky is clear, the entire event should be visible to the unaided eye. "Partial eclipse begins 2:14 a.m., totality begins 3:25 a.m., greatest eclipse 3:55 a.m., totality ends 4:24 a.m., partial eclipse ends 5:34 a.m. All before sunrise!"

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Representative Invites Comment on Her Plan to Make Mountains a National Monument

Representative Judy Chu, who represents the north part of Monrovia, writes that she continues to "welcome all input" on her plan to ask President Obama to declare the San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument ( ). If you wish to do so, contact information is here:

- Brad Haugaard

Space Station Visible Tonight from Monrovia | Chamber Open House | Bear

~ Monrovia's Old Town Sidewalk Astronomers reports that just a few minutes before 8 p.m. tonight there will be a "high bright pass of the International Space Station." The station "will appear low in the southwest about 7:54, and by 7:56 it'll be very high in the sky, slightly to the west, moving from southwest to northeast. It will be very bright, looking like a moving star. Just after 7:57, it will pass into earth's shadow, and slowly fade out of sight in the northeast."

~ Monrovia Chamber of Commerce has remodeled its lobby. If you'd like to see it, stop by the Chamber office this Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. for the ribbon cutting and reception.

~ Bear du jour:

- Brad Haugaard

Protest Against Chu's Plan to Declare San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument

A protest against Representative Judy Chu's plan to have President Obama declare the San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument was held today at Chu's field office in Pasadena. Chu represents the north edge of Monrovia. The protest was promoted by the Arturo Alas for Congress campaign. Picture source: Alas' office.

Note: A reader felt this posting suggested Alas is running against Chu, who represents the 27th Congressional District. To be clear, Alas is running in the 32nd Congressional District, currently held by Grace Napolitano.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Grand Theft Bike; Security Video Leads to Arrest; Lots of Drunk Driving

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for October 2-5 . - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Grand Theft Bicycle – Suspect Arrested 
On October 2 at 7:17 p.m., police were alerted to a bicycle theft that occurred at a business in the 1600 block of South Mountain. The suspect was heading toward the city of Duarte. An officer responded to the area and located the suspect riding the stolen bicycle near Huntington and Buena Vista. The officer detained the suspect and recovered the bicycle. The suspect was arrested and taken into custody.

Residential Burglary 
On October 3 at 1:13 p.m., a residential burglary was reported in the 200 block of West Colorado. The victim left her residence at 12:00 p.m. and was gone for approximately one hour. When she returned home, she found her residence unsecured and the inside had been ransacked. The investigation is continuing.

Residential Burglary 
On October 3 at 1:39 p.m., an officer responded to the report of a residential burglary in the 200 block of North Mountain. The residents left the home at 8:00 a.m. and secured the doors. When they arrived home, they found a rear bedroom window had been smashed and jewelry was taken from two rooms. The investigation is continuing.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 3 at 11:04 p.m., an officer was patrolling the area of Magnolia and Olive when he observed a motorist committing several vehicle code violations. The officer stopped the motorist and discovered the female driver was intoxicated. The driver was arrested for DUI and taken into custody, where she was held for sobering.

Warrant – Suspect Arrested 
On October 3 at 11:14 p.m., an officer on patrol in the area of Myrtle and Huntington observed a male subject crossing the intersection against a red traffic signal. The officer contacted the subject and discovered he had an outstanding warrant issued by the Alhambra Police Department. The subject was arrested for the warrant. Alhambra officers arrived and took custody of the subject for their warrant.

Felony Hit & Run Traffic Collision 
On October 4 at 4:00 a.m., officers were dispatched to the 100 block of North Grand to a hit & run traffic collision. Upon arrival, two occupants were found trapped inside of a vehicle. The suspect vehicle had fled the scene. Monrovia Fire Department responded and used firefighter extrication tools to remove the occupants. The occupants were both male juveniles and had sustained moderate to severe injuries. The driver of the victim vehicle was possibly under the influence of alcohol at the time of the collision. The investigation is continuing.

Hit and Run Traffic Collision Follow-up 
On October 4 at 10:05 a.m., officers were flagged down by an adult male subject in the 1200 block of Encino Avenue. The subject woke up this morning and discovered his red Ford Expedition had been damaged sometime during the night. He confronted his 16- year-old daughter about the damage. She appeared to have been drinking and said she did not know anything about it. Officers contacted the daughter and she admitted to using a shaved key the night before to take the vehicle and to being involved in a hit and run accident near Grand Park. After obtaining her statement, police stored the vehicle for evidence. The investigation is continuing.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested 
On October 5 at 2:07 a.m., an officer on patrol in the area of Myrtle and Evergreen observed a vehicle traveling north on Myrtle strike a curb. He made a traffic stop on the vehicle. The female driver admitted to be intoxicated. Field sobriety tests revealed the driver was intoxicated; she was arrested and taken into custody.

Commercial Burglary 
On October 5 at 12:28 p.m., a commercial burglary was reported at a hotel in the 1400 block of Monterey. The victim was conducting a seminar at the hotel. He left his laptop computer in the seminar room and went to the lobby to meet some clients. When he returned a short time later, his computer was gone. The victim called police and an officer responded. The officer viewed security video of the room and recognized the suspect in the video. The officer located the suspect on Monterey, recovered the computer and arrested the suspect for burglary.

Six Artists at Monrovia's Segil Fine Art

Showing of the works of six artists, Oct. 11-Nov. 8, at Segil Fine Art, 110 West Lime. Artists are: Linda Brown, Marian Fortunati, Nita Harper, Debra Holladay, Sharon Weaver and Laura Wambsgans.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Preservationists Use YouTube to Object to Replacing Old Homes

Monrovia historical preservationists have taken to YouTube to object to smaller old homes being torn down to be replaced by larger modern homes. Video:

- Brad Haugaard

Protest Planned Against Making San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument

A protest against Representative Judy Chu's plan to have President Obama declare the San Gabriel Mountains a National Monument is being planned for Monday, Oct. 6, at 2 p.m. at Chu's field office at 527 S. Lake Avenue in Pasadena. According to a representative of Art Alas, who is running for Congress against Chu, local groups will speak out against the plan and deliver letters of opposition. Among those delivering letters will be the California Trail Users Coalition, Pasadena Bait Club, Public Lands for Public People, SoCal Cycling, Mt. Baldy Lodge, Off-Piste Hikers, Glendora Community Conservancy, San Gabriel Valley Regional Conservancy (SGVRC), and California Off-Road Vehicle Association (CORVA). Source: press release.

UPDATE: Monrovia Councilwoman Becky Shevlin writes to say that, "I, along with Tom Adams and other electeds did sign a letter of opposition" to having the mountains declared a national monument.

- Brad Haugaard

Literacy Fundraiser at Monrovia Library

Monrovia Public Library Foundation will hold "Team Up! Dream Up! For Literacy," a literacy fundraiser, on Sunday, Nov. 2 from 1-3:30 p.m. at the Monrovia Public Library. Team trivia, silent auction, live auction, and good food. Tickets are $40 per person and may be purchased at the Library. Form your own team of 8 to 10 people or join a team to play Team Trivia. Winning team gets a prize.

Nearly 15% of U.S. adults cannot read, and in the past few years funding for literacy programs has been reduced by 40% due to state budget cuts, so to offset cuts the Monrovia Public Library Foundation must increase its fundraising. We hope you will come to this event for fun and to support the Monrovia Public Library Literacy Program. Source: press release.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police Win 'Guns & Hoses' Competition With Fire Department

Monrovia Police officers won the "Guns & Hoses" trophy over the Monrovia Fire Department at the Boys & Girls Club of the Foothills charity golf tournament.

- Brad Haugaard