Tuesday, December 18, 2007


An educational workshop for teachers encompassing the history, geography and culture of Northeast Los Angeles will be presented in conjunction with the third annual "Lummis Day: The Festival of Northeast Los Angeles" on two consecutive Saturdays in February, (2/2 and 2/9).

Titled “A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT: Charles Lummis and the Culture of the Arroyo Seco,” the workshop will be presented as an LAUSD-approved one-point credit class and the curriculum will include seminars and presentations by poets, authors, naturalists, a Native American storyteller, and historians. A broad cross-section of Arroyo locations will serve as classrooms for the program, which will include docent tours of the area’s museums, field studies and nature walks through urban wilderness areas.

Carmela Gomes, a retired LAUSD teacher who serves as Educational Director for the Lummis Day Community Foundation, has designed the 15-hour course in cooperation with the Los Angeles Unified School District and will lead eight additional presenters representing a broad cross section of disciplines and interests for this uniquely multi-disciplinary curriculum. The course is aimed at allowing teachers to impart a sense of “place,” community pride and unity among Los Angeles students.

Participants will join field studies and nature walks in the restored Lower Arroyo, and will attend sessions at some of Northeast Los Angeles’ most historically and culturally significant locations, including Heritage Square Museum, Lummis Home and Gardens, the Casa de Adobe, the Southwest Museum’s Braun Library and Judson Studios. The course will emphasize the geography of the Arroyo Seco watershed, its modes of transportation, the urban wilderness, and the diverse heritage of its inhabitants.

A central theme of the workshop will be the life and work of Northeast Los Angeles’ larger-than- life pioneering spirit, Charles Fletcher Lummis, first city editor of the Los Angeles Times, a city librarian, founder of the Southwest Museum, and an early proponent of Native American Rights.

Presenters for the educational workshop will include poet Suzanne Lummis, Arroyo Seco Foundation Director Tim Brick, native plants expert Christopher Nyerges, author and artist Don Newton, artists Deborah Thomas, instructor and Gabrielino/Tongva tribal council member Julia Bogany, Arroyo Scenic Byway founder Nicole Possert and Highland Park Heritage Trust member and raconteur Virginia Neely.

Participating teachers will be able to create meaningful, standards-based curriculum-relevant projects for use with students, projects that can be shared through community presentations in their own school environments. Teachers will be asked to encourage their students to return with their projects on June 1, for presentation at the Lummis Day Festival.

The program is limited to 40 participants and the fee is $65, which covers materials, museum entries, tours, and speaker fees. Registration and fees are due January 25. The complete schedule and registration forms may be accessed at www.lummisday. org. Online payment is limited to Paypal account holders. Checks may be mailed to Carmela Gomes at 1326 N. Avenue 54, Los Angeles CA 90042.

Lummis Day: The Festival of Northeast Los Angeles will take place on Sunday June 1 and will be preceded by a month-long series of events at libraries and schools throughout Northeast L.A. Lummis Day information can be found at www.lummisday.org. Lummis Day is presented by the Annenberg Foundation and the Autry National Center and is sponsored by the Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, the Historic Highland Park Neighborhood Council, the Greater Cypress Park Neighborhood Council, the Arroyo Seco Neighborhood Council with support from public radio station KPFK 90.7 and City Council Districts 1 and 14.

For further information, contact: call or email Carmela Gomes at 323-257-1900 or carmela.gomes@ lausd.net.

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