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March 19, 2014 | By Teresa Watanabe
Tucked in the corner of a grimy East Hollywood strip mall is a shining hope of public education. Or so U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Wednesday in an event that showcased a comprehensive program to boost academic achievement by supporting students and their families with job training, health services, after-school tutoring and other help. The program is a collaboration of Los Angeles public and private partners led by the Youth Policy Institute, which received a $30-million federal grant in 2012 to launch the initiative in the high-poverty neighborhoods of East Hollywood and Pacoima.
March 17, 2014 | By Jessica Guynn
SAN FRANCISCO -- Twitter Chief Executive Dick Costolo is on his first trip to China. Costolo is spending three days meeting with Shanghai government officials and university administrators. He will also participate in a roundtable discussion with students at Fudan University in Shanghai, which sponsored his visa. Costolo will not visit Beijing, a Twitter spokesman said. Twitter, which has been blocked in China since 2009, tamped down speculation that it is eyeing the Chinese market, the world's most populous with 600 million Internet users.
March 14, 2014 | By Lance Pugmire
Manny Pacquiao's workouts have brought in some heavyweights of life. MGM billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant, a slew of major Hollywood actors, famed singers and others have stopped by gritty Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood to watch the famed Filipino boxer train. Thursday, Pacquiao's publicist said “the most extraordinary thing I've ever seen with Pacquiao” happened when legendary musician Bob Dylan came by. Dylan, a boxing fan who co-wrote the 1975 song “Hurricane,” protesting the imprisonment on a murder case of boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, and formerly worked out with former boxer Bruce Strauss and at the new Wild Card gym in Santa Monica, watched Pacquiao's entire workout, which included eight rounds of sparring.
March 13, 2014
In this week's video roundup of the Takeaway blog: What was President Obama doing when he appeared on the satiric Web-only talk show “Between Two Ferns,” with actor/comedian Zach Galifianakis? Turns out the president was shilling for his favorite cause of the moment: getting young adults to sign up for Obamacare. The video went viral, but Los Angeles Times video editor Ann Simmons asks columnist Robin Abcarian: Did it work? Last weekend, Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul wowed a crowd of young conservatives at the Conservative Political Action Conference, the annual gathering sponsored by the American Conservative Union.
March 12, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
Beck has added 10 dates to his 2014 tour, including an April 9 stop at the Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara ahead of his scheduled performances April 13 and 20 at Coachella. He'll also be dropping in tonight on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” and April 1 on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” Beck's new album, “Morning Phase,” remains in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 albums chart in its second week of release, having sold an additional 33,000 copies last week, bringing its two-week sales total to 120,000.
March 10, 2014 | By Hugo Martín
The partial government shutdown in October was largely to blame for a 3% drop in visitors to America's national parks in 2013, according to a report released Monday by the National Park Service. The country's 401 parks, historic sites and recreation areas drew 273.6 million visitors in 2013, about 9 million fewer than the previous year, according to the report. The 16-day government shutdown, sparked by a budget dispute in Washington, was responsible for reducing the visitation numbers by about 7.9 million, the report said.
March 8, 2014
A direct drive from politically blue Southern California to blue New York takes you through red Kansas and the curiously named town of Liberal. Don't miss it. Tour Dorothy's House & Land of Oz, a theme village, and the Mid-America Air Museum (including a tiny Air Force One that President Eisenhower piloted between Camp David and Washington, D.C.). Relax at Taste of China, where the $8.95 buffet would impress Angelenos and New Yorkers alike. Liberal Convention & Visitors Bureau, 1 Yellow Brick Road; (800)
March 6, 2014 | By David Ng
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to visit the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles on Thursday as part of his three-day California trip.  The visit is expected to cause traffic delays near the museum, which is on Pico Boulevard in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood. The delays are expected to last through the early afternoon. The Simon Wiesenthal Center, which runs the museum, has long planned to build a similar museum in Jerusalem. The project has experienced delays, partly because of a dispute over the site, which was a Muslim cemetery.  PHOTOS: Arts and culture in pictures by The Times The Jerusalem museum has an estimated price tag of about $100 million. Netanyahu has been a vocal supporter of the Jerusalem site and is a friend of Wiesenthal Center founder and dean Rabbi Marvin Hier.  On Thursday, Netanyahu is expected to address local Jewish leaders at the museum.
March 4, 2014 | By Catherine Saillant
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford paid a visit to L.A. City Hall, but Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti was nowhere to be found. Not because he was avoiding Ford, who got into a political pinch back home after admitting to crack cocaine use, but because Garcetti was in Mexico on a business trip. "Every city I go to, I go to City Hall," Ford said Monday, surrounded by his handlers on the steps of City Hall. "I just pop in to say hi. " Surprised City Hall security personnel escorted Ford and his entourage to Garcetti's office but were soon turned away.
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