Thursday, September 25, 2008

What do we want? Rec Center!

Back in the mid-90s, I was part of a younger adult-oriented charrette sponsored by the LA Community Redevelopment Agency to brainstorm and help create a vision for the future of Little Tokyo. I wasn't very active in the meetings, but our group of mostly 20-somethings focused on the need for a gym in Little Tokyo that would bring young people (back) to Little Tokyo for things like basketball and martial arts.

Then, in 2000, Tony and I joined the about 500 community folks in a march and rally through Little Tokyo to support the Rec Center in Little Tokyo. I think the chant went something like...

What do we want? Rec Center!
When do we want it? Now!
Where do we want it?
Little Tokyo!

I even wrote a few articles myself when I was a columnist for the Rafu Shimpo: Then in 2004, when Tony was designing the Little Tokyo Mural, he included the Rec Center in the design. Here's a picture in our garage in July 2005 with Maiya when she was just barely 5 months old.

Fast Forward to Tuesday, 9/23. Great news! The LA City Council voted unanimously to approve a Memorandum of Understanding for Little Tokyo Service Center to build the Little Tokyo Rec Center near St. Vibiana's Church and the Little Tokyo Public Library. Here is an article in the LA Times yesterday.

All I have to say is, it's about time!! Let's get this party started!


mamalife said...

It is amazing how many years these things take. You can feel proud to have been a part of this as future kids enjoy the fruits of your hard labors. The town I live in has a kids splash fountain which opened a couple of years ago. It was 10-years in the making and the work of a local mom really just continually pushing away for something for the kids in our town which has one of the most elderly populations in the nation. Her own kids are now too old to enjoy it. But my daughter loves it and I really appreciate that she gave so much of her own time to help see this happen.

Jenni said...

Thanks MamaL! I love hearing stories like that, thanks for sharing. we love those splash fountains.