Southern Californians celebrated the Easter weekend with prayers, blessings, charity and frivolity.
Thousands of worshipers dressed warmly for showers and gray clouds Sunday at the traditional Easter Sunrise service at the Hollywood Bowl, but were rewarded with blue skies. Dedicated to the victims of December's earthquake in Armenia, the ceremony featured an appearance by Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian of the Armenian Church of North America--the first time in the event's 69 years that an Armenian churchman delivered the sermon.
Volunteers gathered on Skid Row to serve Easter meals to the homeless at shelters and missions. At the downtown Los Angeles Midnight Mission, more than 3,000 homeless people were expected to partake in a meal of ham, candied yams, punch and apple pie.
Some people cavorted in local parks or covered their heads in all manner of hats and bonnets. Penny Rubbert, 88, showed up for a party at St. Vincent's Hospital wearing a massive wheel topped with an assortment of food items.
"I'm a modern girl in a bonnet too hot to handle," said Rubbert, whose unusual headgear represented the hospital's Meals-On-Wheels program for the elderly.