Sunday, April 26, 2015

A Visit to Discovery Cube Los Angeles, the Valley's New Children's Museum

Discovery Cube

A few years ago we took the kids to the Discovery Cube in Orange County; now we have an outpost of the children's science museum right here in Los Angeles. The Discovery Cube Los Angeles is now open, up in Sylmar, and now is the time to visit: For a limited time, entry is only $10 a person.

The Discovery Cube L.A. is smaller than the Orange County original, but has enough activities and exhibits to keep your little ones engaged and interested for several hours. (There's also room to expand, and there indeed are more attractions to come). Plus, it's located in the Hansen Dam recreation area, with a playground right next door -- so you can absolutely make a day of it.

Among the highlights:

"Aquavator": Descend deep into the earth’s crust in a specialized elevator and view the geological layers while learning the science behind underground water aquifers. Make sure to keep an eye out for the mythical Megalodon on your trip!
"Inspector Training Course": Is your house earthquake proof and energy efficient? Find out when you strap on an inspector belt and master the skills of a home inspector using a touch screen tablet. This competitive scavenger-hunt game takes you inside a California home and puts you to the test!

Discovery Cube

Rock climbing wall


Discovery Cube

Thomas and Friends Explore the Rails: "A hands-on STEM exhibit based on the adventures of everyone’s favorite blue engine, Thomas, his engine friends and the Island of Sodor’s iconic locations: Knapford Station, Sodor Steamworks and much more. Help Thomas and his friends solve a variety of challenges, from simple sorting and shape identification to more complex engineering obstacles."

Discovery Cube

Exhibit about the Los Angeles River

Discovery Cube

Race to Zero Waste: "The first one to zero wins! Zero waste, that is. Race against others to correctly sort recyclables and other waste to divert trash from our landfills."

Discovery Cube

Discovery Market: "Grab your cart, aim your scanner and zoom through the aisles in this exciting grocery store game. Learn the importance of making healthy and Earth-friendly choices when you shop. Are you up for the challenge?"

Discovery Cube

More inside the grocery store game

Discovery Cube

Science of Hockey: "The Science of Hockey, created in association with the LA Kings, is one of the most technically advanced sports-themed exhibits in the world. The permanent destination attraction provides science and hockey fans with exclusive access to the sport and the team, while exploring the fascinating math and science behind the game."

Discovery Cube

"Designers worked closely with LA Kings representatives and BaAM Productions to create an exhibit that is as interactive, compelling and realistic as possible – a commitment to authenticity."

Discovery Cube

Blogger Kid 2.0 loved the zamboni.

Discovery Cube

Discovery Cube is located at the intersection of Foothill Boulevard and Osborne Street, right off the 210 freeway.

Friday, April 24, 2015

KCRW's THE SPIN-OFF: Listen to TV Guide Magazine's Showrunners Panel from Wondercon



Following up on my post about this year's TV Guide Magazine Showrunners Fan Favorites panel at Wondercon Anaheim, we've taken the audio and posted it as a bonus edition of KCRW's "The Spin-Off" podcast!

The panel included:

Brannon Braga (Star Trek: TNG/Voyager/Enterprise; 24; Cosmos and Salem)
Kerry Ehrin (Moonlighting, Friday Night Lights, Parenthood, Bates Motel)
Adam F. Goldberg (Still Standing, Breaking In, The Goldbergs)
Dan Harmon (Sarah Silverman Program, Rick and Morty, Community)
Alex Hirsch (Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, Fish Hooks, Gravity Falls)
Peter Horton (actor; Grey’s Anatomy, Brimstone, The Philanthropist, American Odyssey)
Graeme Manson (Flashpoint, Being Erica, Orphan Black)

The discussion kicked off with an attempt to get the panelists to answer that always tricky question: What exactly does a showrunner do?

Listen below!

KCRW

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

We Went to Palm Springs and Got Stuck in a Snowstorm

Palm Desert

Yes, it's true. A few weeks ago we spent a few days in Palm Springs for spring break, and just like we did in 2012, we took the famed Aerial Tramway from Palm Springs' Chino Canyon (elevation 2,643 feet) to the San Jacinto mountains (8,516 feet).

Down below, the temperature was in the 80s. Up there, it was chilly. Upper 30s, low 40s. Cold enough for snow. And it was there that we experienced our first "thundersnow" -- a downpour of chunky snowflakes, accompanied by some thunder and lightning. We hiked a bit, until we decided it was safer to go back and get some hot chocolate at the Aerial Tramway station. But it was pretty cool experiencing real heat and a blizzard, all in one afternoon. Some more pics:

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Palm Desert

Monday, April 20, 2015

Scenes from This Year's Festival of Books

Book festival

Target wasn't a sponsor of this year's Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC -- and although I'm sure that was a financial blow to the festival organizers, it was likely a nice boon to independent bookstores like Montrose's Once Upon a Time (above). I happily shelled out money to support the store (one of the gems of Montrose's shopping district) and buy the Blogger Kids some fresh books (many of which were autographed by the authors) at the same time.

I also stopped by Angel City Press (by far my favorite booth every year at the festival), where I picked up a few new L.A.-centric books for my collection and also caught up with LA Observed's Kevin Roderick, and we both marveled at how we've now been doing this blogging thing for 12 years. Is there an end game? Or can we keep this up as a hobby forever? Good question!

I had Blogger Kid 2.0 in tow, so there was no time to really listen to any speakers, although we did stop for a bit to hear Billy Idol interviewed about his career. Some pics of our Saturday at the Festival of Books:

Book festival
Music at the USC stage

Book festival
Kind of hard to make out, but yes, that's Billy Idol

Book festival
Always a crowd at the Festival of Books!

Book festival
I think this character has something to do with a Trader Joe's cookbook.

Book festival
C-SPAN's Book TV

Friday, April 17, 2015

Video: Kevin and Bean Choke Up at Their NAB Hall of Fame Induction

NAB Kevin and Bean

One more item on the Kevin and Bean NAB Hall of Fame induction on Tuesday (see my post here). I took a few quick videos of portions of both hosts' acceptance speeches (mostly the ends, when things got emotional). A few tidbits:



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