Get out your most comfortable walking shoes if you want to join this weekend’s The Big Parade, a walk-hike that covers 40 miles and 80 public stairways across Echo Park, downtown, Los Feliz and Silver Lake. Organizers stress you can walk as little or as much as you want and enjoy some live music, guest speakers and other events along the way during the urban hike on Saturday and Sunday, May 18 and 19. About 500 walkers and hikers are expected join all or parts of The Big Parade, which was started five years Dan Koeppel, a writer, walker and advocate of public stairways.
Koeppel, who lives int Mt. Washington, describes what’s new about this year’s parade:
We do have two new stops in Elysian Park, one near Barlow Respiratory Hospital, where we will talk about the effort to save the facility; and then near Grace Simons lodge for a lunchtime concert with the Ukelele Orchestra of the Western Hemisphere. The second day has substantial changes – we enter Griffith Park from the east, near Los Feliz; that allows us to stop at the gorgeous and little-known Cedar Grove, where Cypress resident Jen Hofer will read poetry for us.
If you want to prepare your calves for the weekend, a “preview walk”—led by Bob Inman, author of “A Guide to the Stairways of Los Angeles,” will be held on Friday, May 17 through parts of Atwater, Cypress Park, Elysian Valley and other nearby communities.