Month: August 2016

Hikes & Bikes

hikesnBikesPRL

If for some reason you can’t make it out to visit one of our National Parks this weekend to celebrate our National Park’s 100th birthday, here’s a few local hikes and a intermediate bike ride you can take part in.

These guided hikes and the bike ride are all courtesy of our Orange County Parks and are all FREE – just cover the parking!

Saturday, August 27, 2106

Intermediate Bike Ride: Shoestring Canyon, Loma Ridge, to the Back Side of The Sinks – Irvine Ranch Open Space
Join a strenuous, extremely challenging early morning mountain bike ride through Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve. Riders will visit the East Sinks Viewing Deck and gain beautiful vistas of Agua Chinon Canyon and beyond.

  • Pre-registration is required.
  • Driving directions will be provided after registration.
  • For more events in Limestone Canyon,click here.


Online Registration

Date:  8/27/2016
Time:  6:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Laurel Loop Geology Hike – Laguna Coast Wilderness Park
Enjoy an afternoon of unspoiled canyon views and learn about the geology of this area.  The rocks and fossils reveal fascinating stories about the park’s ancient environments. This will be a 3.5-mile hike over steep and uneven terrain (600-ft. elevation gain).

  • Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Willow Canyon Staging Area (20101 Laguna Canyon Rd, just south of El Toro Rd intersection).
  • For questions, call (949) 497-8324 Mon-Fri & (949) 923-2235 Sat/Sun.
  • Parking: $3 per vehicle.


Online Registration

Date:  8/27/2016
Time:  8:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Walk with a Naturalist – O’Neill Regional Park
Join O’Neill Regional Park naturalists and learn about the animals and nature of Trabuco Canyon. This will be a light to moderate walk on mostly paved roads.

  • All ages welcome.
  • Fee: Free
  • Parking: $5 per vehicle

Event is conditional on the weather.

Date:  8/27/2016
Time:  9:00 AM – 10:30 AM

 

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Guided Nature Hike – Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park
Join the Park Ranger for a one mile nature hike in the beautiful Bell Canyon area of Caspers Wilderness Park. Hike lasts approximately one hour and is suitable for all ages.

  • Contact park office for hike updates.
  • Parking: $5 per vehicle (day use fee).
  • Meet at the Old Corral Day Use Area.
Date:  8/28/2016
Time:  8:00 AM – 9:15 AM
Bird Walk – Laguna Coast Wilderness Park
Spot year-round and summer resident birds with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteer naturalists on this 2-mile hike over uneven, sometimes steep terrain (up to 200-ft. elevation gain) through one of the most diverse plant communities in the United States.

  • For ages 12 and up (minors must be accompanied by an adult).
  • Wear hiking or walking shoes and bring your binoculars. Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Willow Canyon Staging Area (west side of Laguna Canyon Rd/SR-133, just south of El Toro Road).
  • For questions, call (949) 497-8324 Mon-Fri & (949) 923-2235 Sat/Sun.
  • Parking: $3 per vehicle.


Online Registration

Date:  8/28/2016
Time:  8:00 AM – 10:30 AM

Happy 100th Birthday National Park Service

Image courtesy of nps.gov
Image courtesy of nps.gov

Today marks the 100th birthday of our National Park Service and they are inviting everyone to celebrate with special events and FREE admission to all of the 412 National Parks from today through Sunday, August 28th.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

Our National Park Service is encouraging everyone to #FindYourPark and attend one of the special events they have planned.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

We’ve been pretty busy this summer with our summer exploring trips. We’ve visited Sequoia and Kings Canyon as well as two trips to Yosemite. One of which included camping inside Yosemite National Park. The parks are all surrounded with beauty and wonder at every turn.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

In Yosemite, we were able to go to sleep to the sound of Yosemite Falls in the background and wake up to look up at Half Dome. There is always so much to see and do in our National Parks and never enough time to finish exploring.

JR-Centen-Wood

In addition to their special centennial programs offered through out the country this weekend, the NPS offers their Junior Ranger Program everyday as well as  the special Girl Scout Ranger Program and the Scout Ranger Program for Boy Scouts.

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If you have other plans this weekend – break them and go FindYourPark  (EncuentraTuParque).

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

Don’t forget if you have a 4th grader – your entire family gets into the park for free for a full year with the Every Kid in a Park program.

Every Kid in a Park

Pokémon Go Hike

Image courtesy of pokemongo.com
Image courtesy of pokemongo.com

Here’s a fun hike for all you gamers out there! Get your game on at this upcoming Pokémon Go Hike. This 4 mile hike in Whiting Ranch does require reservations and there are still a few spots available, so act quick! 

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Come mingle with other like-minded gamers while you explore the great outdoors. Join us at the active Poké Stops at the Whiting Ranch trailhead with three Poké Stops waiting for you. Arrive early to grab an egg from the Poké Stops or join us with one from a previous stop.

As you incubate your egg, venture out and see Mother Nature’s own version of Beedrill, Rattata, Spearow, Ekans and the elusive Persian. Along the way, learn which plant Pikachu would have used to name the city of Hollywood, and the plant that Muk would use to cover up his obnoxious odor. Keep an eye out for poison oak and hear about nature’s remedy should you get tangled up in it during your search for Ditto, the most powerful Pokémon.

Pokémon Go is a location-based augmented reality game that allows iOS and Android users to locate, capture, train and battle virtual creatures known as Pokémon. Come with the Pokémon app downloaded on your smart phone and at least one or two Pokémon finds.  And definitely have your smart phone charged up to the max..

  • When: Sunday, August 21, 2016 from 9:00 am – 11:30 am
  • Where: Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park – Borrego Parking Area
  • Cost: FREE – parking fees will apply.

Visit Letsgooutside.org to register

Rocket Fever 2016

Images courtsey of Columbiaspacescience
Images courtsey of Columbiaspacescience

Have you ever wanted to build and launch a rocket? Come to LA’s only rocket festival at Columbia Memorial Space Center for Rocket Fever 2016! Experience a full day of great science activities, awesome food trucks, incredible demonstrations, prizes, and of course, rocket launches.

Build and decorate a rocket of your very own, then get ready to see it launch into the air. See others launch their own custom rockets* into the air, or take a look at some of the larger rockets created by hobbyists!

Whether you are new to the hobby or a veteran rocketeer, the Columbia Memorial Space Center welcomes you for a fun filled day of rocketing. *Due to safety reasons, Only rockets with A and B motors are allowed.

  • When: Saturday, August 20, 2016
  • Where: Columbia Memorial Space Center, 12400 Columbia Way
    Downey, California 90242
  • Cost: FREE (Small fee may apply for separate activities) 

How to built your own Rocket?

Step 1: Get a rocket: Bring your own rocket from home. Model rocket kits can be purchased at most hobby stores or online and are available for all skill levels.

Step 2: Buy a rocket motor: Individual rocket motors will be sold by the Southern California Rocketry Association (SCRA) on the day of the event only. Size A and Size B motors are the only motors accepted.

Step 3: Pass inspection: Pick up your “Rocket Inspection Pass” and head over to the Rocket Inspection Station along the outside of the baseball diamond. All rockets must pass inspection before flying. All launches are weather permitting.

 

The Last Bookstore

ProjetRefinedLife.com
ProjetRefinedLife.com

We’ve been pretty busy this summer with weekend getaways, camping trips, hiking, exploring National Parks and our beautiful California Coastline. This weekend we choose to take an urban adventure to explore some food, some fun and some culture!

GrandCentral Market

Our weekend included visits to The Natural History Museum, Grand Central Market, Clifton’s Cafeteria, a Farmers Market and Universal Studios but for me, the highlight was our visit to The Last Bookstore.

Downtown LAIt’s been awhile since I’ve visited Downtown L,A., I was pleasantly surprised to see so many changes. The area is being transformed with lofts, restaurants, art studios, Grand Park, a Sunday Morning Farmers Market, the U.S. Bank Glass Slide and The Last Bookstore. It has a fun and cool vibe with much to discover.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

 The Last Bookstore sits in the heart of Downtown and is the world’s largest independent bookstore! It was stated in 2005 by Josh Spencer. Josh originally opened the bookstore down the street from it’s current location in a space just over 900 sq. feet.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

The Last bookstore now resides in 22,000 sq. foot space within the Spring Arts Tower located at the corner of 5th & Spring St., within walking distance to Grand Central Market.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

The last bookstore has managed to thrive in age of  e-books and online book sales.It is regularly featured in travel guides, magazines and television.

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First, the Spring Arts Tower is gorgeous! The building holds beautiful columns, detailed high ceilings and beautiful bank vaults. The architecture of this building is something that just can’t be found in the buildings of today. Stepping inside, you know immediately this is not your typical bookstore!

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You would expect to find new books, gently used books, rare and hard to find books at a place this size but you’ll find more than that here.

ProjectRefinedLife.com
ProjectRefinedLife.com

Art is tucked into corners, on side tables on the walls and hanging from the ceiling. Even the lighting is art. The bookstore also hosts a vintage comics book, vintage records, the Spring Arts Collective Gallery, a Yarn Shop and the famous Labyrinth upstairs!

thelastbookstore5

In addition to their amazing assortment of books, they have a great children’s section. special book rooms made in the bank vaults. a stage, comfy sofa’s and chairs, a full schedule of events and workshops.

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My girls had a great time discovering vintage books, reading time on the coach and walking through the store.

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 There was a kids writing workshop taking place while we were visiting. I love seeing the community involved and taking part in their independent bookstore events.

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What was even more amazing was finding out a little bit about the owner, Josh Spencer. Josh has an outstanding view on life. In 1986 Josh suffered through a moped accident that changed his life forever. He has an amazing story of strength and the power to over come what life throws at you.

Welcome to The Last Bookstore from Chad Howitt on Vimeo.

Visiting the Last Bookstore needs to be your “Must See” list of things in LA. While your there remember to support independent book stores.

The Last Bookstore is located at 453 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013