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100 reasons to raise kids in Los Angeles
To celebrate the 100th issue of StrollerTraffic LA (today!) we’ve rounded up 100 of our favorite reasons to raise a family in Los Angeles—starting with . . . can you guess?.
1. The weather.
2. Farmers’ markets every day of the week.
3. The 50-mile stretch of beach from Malibu to Laguna.
4. Noah’s Ark at the Skirball.
5. The 24-hour cupcake vending machine (with ATM) at Sprinkles.
6. Splash pads.
8. The spellbinding Metropolis exhibit at LACMA.
9. Petting sea jellies and stingrays at the Aquarium of the Pacific.
10. Laid-back mom friends.
11. Collecting seashells on play dates.
12. Spring blooms at the Getty Center’s gardens.
13. Endless picnic venues.
14. The carousel at the Santa Monica Pier.
15. Harry’s Berries’ Gaviota strawberries.
16. Canyon hikes with the Ergo.
17. Family meals at Pitfire Pizza. (Specifically, the wine and beer selection.)
19. The trolley and fountain at the Grove.
20. Hiking to the Griffith Park Observatory.
21. Lunch at Trails Café afterward.
22. Photo ops with the wooly mammoth at the La Brea Tarpits.
23. French toast at Brentwood Country Mart’s Farmshop.
24. Access to 177 parks.
25. The onesie selection at Kitson.
26. Street performers along the Third Street Promenade.
28. Spring babies at the Los Angeles Zoo.
29. Donut holes at Milo and Olive.
30. Pumpkin picking at Underwood Family Farms.
31. The vine-covered playhouse at Pasadena’s Huntington Botanical Gardens.
32. Drinking amazing (and affordable) local wines after the kids are down.
33. At least a few nursery schools without waitlists.
34. Lakeshore Learning in Culver City.
35. Swinging next to Jennifer Garner’s kids.
36. Preschool playgrounds that are open year-round.
37. Piccolo Chef’s cooking classes for tots.
38. The lemon-ricotta pancakes at Shutters.
39. Sanity-saving parenting classes at the Pump Station & Nurtury.
40. Easy access for the grandparents.
41. Books and Cookies on Main.
42. Biking along The Strand.
43. Baguette sandwiches at Proof Bakery in Atwater Village.
44. Catching butterflies on your finger at the Natural History Museum.
45. Caramels from the Little Flower Candy Co. in Pasadena.
46. The six-hour hop to Hawaii.
47. The kids’ menu at Tavern.
48. Erewhon Natural Foods store.
49. Little Royals Tea at the Hotel Bel-Air.
50. Multi-cultural friendships.
51. Bilingual nannies.
52. Hundreds of postpartum fitness options.
53. Sample sales at Splendid Littles.
54. The Space Shuttle.
55. Waffle cones at Sweet Rose Creamery.
56. Sunning in the meadow at the Silver Lake Reservoir.
57. Ice cream sandwiches from Manhattan Beach Creamery.
58. Surf lessons.
59. SummerSounds Kids’ Music Festival at the Hollywood Bowl.
60. Pediatricians with holistic overtones.
61. The Harry Potter exhibit at the Warner Bros. Studio.
62. Concerts at the Frank Gehry-designed Walt Disney Concert Hall.
63. Universal Studios.
64. Family breakfast on the outdoor patio at Sycamore Kitchen.
65. Open gym time at Kidville in Brentwood.
66. Outdoor birthday parties, year-round.
67. La Bella Cosa. The Little Seed. Bel Bambini. Green Cradle. Juvenile Shop.
68. The gargantuan Whole Foods on Lincoln in Venice.
69. Running the bases after a Sunday ball game at Dodger Stadium.
70. The annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.
71. 21 Choices in Pasadena.
72. Kid Firefly along Abbot Kinney.
73. WAHM ‘office space’ at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf.
74. Taking a ride on the Angel’s Flight funicular downtown.
75. Eek! at the Greek Theatre.
76. The Rose Parade floats.
77. Acorn Toy Store in Santa Monica.
78. Mommy and me yoga classes on the beach.
79. See’s Candies.
80. The whale at the Santa Monica Place mall.
81. In-state tuition at UC colleges.
82. Descanso Gardens’ summer concert series for families.
83. Sending holiday cards with the ocean as the backdrop.
84. Crafting with origami paper from Marukai market.
85. Acting classes for kids. Really good ones.
86. Weekend tripping to the San Diego Zoo and Sea World.
87. In-N-Out burgers for lunch.
88. In-N-Out burgers for dinner.
89. A downtown with a 12-acre civic park.
90. Driving a baby to sleep along the Pacific Coast Highway.
91. Jackie Rosenberg’s Mommy and Me class in Sherman Oaks.
92. Donna Holloran’s Babygroup in Santa Monica.
93. Downtown LA flower market.
94. Gondola rides at Belmont Shore in Long Beach.
95. Hot chocolate from the Casbah Café in Silverlake.
96. Trick-or-treating without coats.
97. Easy road trips to the mountains.
98. Easy road trips to the desert.
99. Easy road trips to the forest.
100. Did we mention the weather?