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City Beat: From dates to nuts -- 50 years at Original Farmers Market

November 17, 2013|By Nita Lelyveld
  • Doris Perez, left, 78, of Hollywood serves a sample of nut butter to Lea Budge, visiting from Australia, at Magee's Nut Shop at the Original Farmers Market in Los Angeles.
Doris Perez, left, 78, of Hollywood serves a sample of nut butter to Lea Budge,… (Francine Orr / Los Angeles…)

It's not so common these days to work in the same place for 50 years, but Doris Perez recently celebrated her 50th year at the Original Farmers Market.

She works five days a week at Magee's House of Nuts — weekend mornings and Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons. Stop by sometime to say hello.

Perez, 78, started out at the Desert Date Shop on Oct. 23, 1963 — a few short years after arriving from Dublin to be a nanny to two small children.

She worked pies at Du-par's for 38 years until it changed hands and closed for a long renovation.

Perez has been dishing out nuts at Magee's since 2005.

Fifty years, think about it. Perez was still new to the market on Nov. 22, 1963, when she learned from weeping customers that President John F. Kennedy had been shot. 

She met Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1968 when the former president visited the market.

Actor Glenn Ford used to visit Perez. He called her when he was too ill to make the trip himself.

On a recent Saturday, a courtly looking man in a khaki windbreaker came by and said "Top of the morning!" just as Perez was setting up. 

It was Peter O'Malley, the former owner of the Dodgers.

"We love her. We truly love her," O'Malley said.

Read more about Doris Perez in my latest City Beat story.

Keep reading to see the photo story I sent about Perez on Twitter.

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Follow City Beat on Twitter and Facebook. Read more City Beats here.

Email ideas for future City Beats to nita.lelyveld@latimes.com

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