Silence at Sunset Junction

For the first time in many years, the last weekend in August did not find Sunset Junction, where Sunset and Santa Monica boulevard meet, blocked off for the Sunset Junction festival. With the festival canceled after being denied city permits this week, the only sounds this morning at Sunset Junction were those of rumbling buses, the clatter of dishes at Cafe Stella  and workers yelling to each other at the Jiffy Lube. Even Intelligentisa Coffee, which is mobbed most of the week, was quiet as it was closed for a day of training.  For those seeking crowds and music, the No Function Junction, organized by Silver Lake merchants, and Echo Park Rising, sponsored by stores and restaurants, will be hosting some of the bands that were scheduled to play at Sunset Junction as well as offering sales and special offers during the weekend.


  1. The “No Function Junction” is exactly what should be happening. A small FREE get together for and by the community. Hearing about people flying into LA just for sunset junction is ridiculous. Maybe this experience will wake some people up and make them realize that not every form of entertainment needs to be profitable. This is a city full of artists and musicians that would gladly come support and give back to the community that made them. Bring back the OLD small, warm and FREE Sunset Junction.

  2. The jury is still out on the “No Function Junction” It was a ghost town there this morning. Anyone get their tix refunded?

  3. i agree 100% with hb.

  4. The SJNA website is down.
    The phone calls are not being returned.
    The vendors are freaking out.
    Ticket buyers are upset and have way to reach the SJNA.

    Interestingly, although the SJNA is not reachable for refunds, they were SOMEHOW able to organize and put up the Silver Lake Farmer’s Market today (Saturday). Normally, the market is closed for the fair which begs the question, how did they get it together in a few days – while hiding from all the vendors & ticket buyers who want answers about refunds? (Especially since the SJNA testified at City Hall that profits from the Street Fair went to running the Farmer’s Market!)

    Best bet for a refund is to go to the Silver Lake Farmer’s Market – ask for Edwin who is Michael McKinley’s right hand man.

  5. Ok so let me get this straight Micheal McKinley received $142,000.00 exclusively from LIVE NATION to pay off this years permit. Then Micheal McKinley said he didnt have time to deposit $142,000.00 .. C’mon if the sunset Junction was so important you would find time to drop off 142k . I mean seeing how it was urgent to get the permits. Now this is where it gets kinda fishy . What is the plan for the 142k ? Has it been returned to LIVE NATION ? or has it been sent to pay off last years permit ? Also another thing that bugs me is what is going to go on with refunds for vendors , and Ticket sales ? it sounds to me like we need a new promoter/ organizer . I don’t trust none of these people , especially ones that arn’t very clear or truthful about money , and certain expenses . Heck let me throw the junction next year bet ill have left over money to donate to a local SilverLake School , and make sure local residents get in for me with local bands . As a matter of fact im going to launch a website , and a petition stating “WE WANT A BETTEr & CLEANER SILVERLAKE JUNCTION”

  6. Shhhhhhhhunset Junction

  7. Re the $142,000, it is my understanding it WAS deposited. But the check would not be cleared immediately — and thus, they could not pass a check, or cash, to the city the same day.

    This turned into a disaster, and a catastrophe. But the accusations being aired are wildly misguided and even libelous.

    All that happened here was that the fair got away from its roots, got too big and great and excluded the neighbors it was supposed to serve. Then the city came in and wanted a huge cut — which apparently was much bigger than for other similar functions. Then the Sunset Junction organizers sought to negotiate that down to something more reasonable, but the city took a hardnosed stance and brought things to the very last second. And the organizers just were not organized enough to come up with the money up front and timely.

    Meanwhile, a huge affair like this takes many, many months of full time work by a staff. Michael McKinley headed that — and yes, it was a full time job, and he got paid for a full time job — nothing wrong with that, and there is just about no non-profit out there that doesn’t operate the same. Exactly what his pay level was I don’t know, but I do know it was a BIG job he undertook, even if misguided in moving the fair away from its roots.

    To my mind, these scurrilous allegations of criminality and more are just plain libel worthy of the Tea Party.

  8. I received a refund for my Sunset Junction tickets tonight. I went to the Silver Lake Farmers Market (held on Tuesdays and Saturdays) and got my money back from Edwin Gomez, the manager of the Silver Lake Farmers Market. Anyone with tickets should try to do the same thing.

  9. @Mark
    Once again, the city made him pay larger permit fees than other events (Abbot Kinney, Eagle Rock) because he was charging a mandatory fee. I don’t know how many times that needs to be said, but I fully support that decision. The city is broke and can’t afford to foot the bill for this type of event (not all-inclusive). As a tax payer I fully support that.

    Yes planning it must be a huge job, but obviously McKinley wasn’t quite up to the task in recent years if he had to resort to these unfair and divisive tactics to keep the event afloat. Working at a non-profit myself, I certainly understand that those who keep the organization afloat need to be compensated, but good financial planning is essential, as is accountability.

  10. Joyce Azelton Cimino

    It is 1:15 am and on a fluke I decided to Google the Sunset Junction Street Fair as I now live in Seattle and have since 1989. I had no idea that the fair had come to such an abrupt end due to lack of payment of fee and permits. As you can tell by my name I am one of the founders of the Sunset Neighborhood Alliance and the women who gave birth to the first Street Fair along with Diane Clark the Director of El Centro Del Pueblo. I cannot tell you how much it saddens me to hear what has become of the event. El Centro Del Pueblo headed at that time by Diane Clark (now deceased) and the Sunset Junction Neighborhood Alliance built a bridge of understanding that at that time in history, was ground breaking! It was an event grown out of love, hard work and the belief that once we got to know and understand each other we could, and would, find common ground that would enable us to learn to live together side by side in a community which fostered understanding, acceptance and respect. A few years back when I attended Diane’s memorial service I spoke with several of the gang members who came to pay their respects to the women who at that time had the courage to lead her community down a different path. They were all grown men now with families of their own. Of course the conversation came around to the street fair and what they told me was that El Centro no longer even participated in the event for it no long stood for anything other than making money.
    I could go on and on about how the event was stolen away from those who cared by those who saw it as a way to pad their own pockets. But I won’t! I won’t because what I have read here in comment after comment is that the community already feels a sense of loss and betrayal. I don’t see any reason to kick up old wounds.
    I would say this however, I believe that the community should demand and deserves, and an open accounting of what has taken place over the years under the direction of the events leaders and/or directors. As a community you should do whatever is necessary to see that whatever the issues are, that they are brought to light. After all, it is you, your friends, your neighbors, and community businesses that have been held up by the events directors as the heart and soul of the event. If as a community you believe that it is in your name, individuals have profited for their own benefit, then as a community you have no other choice but to bring those individuals to task!
    I don’t really know what else to add at this point, it has come as such a surprise; I was as I said earlier just goggling around! I never expected to step into all of this anger and sadness, but honestly even though I am taken a back I can’t say as I am surprised. My love and heart to you, a community I so fiercely loved, Joyce Azelton Cimino

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