The area that MacArthur Park now covers was once a swampland. But during the 19th century, Mayor William H. Workman brought ... More
The area that MacArthur Park now covers was once a swampland. But during the 19th century, Mayor William H. Workman brought in topsoil and trees and created a lake in a low ravine by filling it with water. It was one of the first public gardens in Los Angeles and is named after General Douglas MacArthur. There are more than 80 species of plants. Paddleboats are available for rent on the lake and there is a snack bar and playground. Many locals come here to picnic and play. Although this is not the safest area in town, if you are here during the day, there should be no problems. Besides it is very convenient to reach this park as there are several bus stations scattered around it.
Come to think of it, my mother use to shop at many stores to get the right price and in those days distance was not a factor because it was very cheap to get on a bus and ask for a transfer, yes the transfers were free, RTD baby! El Piojito, “The Flea” was a store my mother would buy many things from, cheap but name brands. This store was right across Macarthur Park on W. 7th St. cross street S. Alvarado St. This place was really cool in the late 70's, I even remember small foot pedle boats you rented for a few dollars an hour, then. Right now, day time is the only time the beauty and history can be found in it's old veins. Much culture of buying and selling! But it was long time ago a very friendly and nice place to spend a day. It's hard to appreciate now if you don't know the history in that area. I use to live on Lake st. before and after the city blocked those street litterally, only one way in and out.
I lived near MacArthur Park for going on 6 months now and have never had a problem at all. I've even walked through this park numerous times in a suit and tie, after midnight, and have yet to be approached. Maybe it's because I look like a cop and all of the cholo's are afraid of me? Still though, the fact of the matter is i've yet to say anything bad about this place.
I have alot of young memories of MacArthur Park dating back to the late 70's especially because we lived across the street from it I remember the days when this park was the nicest park in the city from the lake to the play area where the large rocket stood, where all the senior citizens would sit and feed the pigeons, it was beautiful but something terrible went wrong in the mid 80's that changed the face of the park. Gangs,drugs and crime took over the park changing the face of it forever. As a young boy it bother me alot to see that happen to my childhood park, even though we moved up the street to South Central L.A, I never left, I always said this park would be back, now as a father i enjoy bringing my son to play at this park just like my father did I see the face of this park changing for the better, even though is not there were it used to be. Very soon it will be the park where all true Angelenos will love bringing their kids, just like our parents did at one time. I love L.A and I love MacArthur Park.
This place has totally changed over the last few years. Before, there were so many people in the fake ID trade (at least 50 outside), but I just went there yesterday after a few years, and there was only 1 guy!! That's quite a change. Also, there used to be a lot of gangs in the area (18th street), but nowadays, I do not see any at all. This area has changed completely 100% and is cool if anyone wants to visit this place.
MacArthur Park has cleaned up quite a bit in the last couple of years. I should know, I live right up the street from it. The police have really cracked down on the druggies and sketchy people hanging around the park. Generally, if you go there looking for trouble, you can find some. If you just want to chill and check out the Salvadoran vibe, it's a pretty cool scene.
McArthur Park is a must see, full of beauty and serenity. One must remember that WestLake Village was the place to be seen in the early 1900's, beatiful area in for a makeover. Support the MacArthur park renaissance.
Fun, large park, with a large man made lake. Very fun park, and historic part of Los Angeles from the golden years to today. I would say that it is not a place to go after hours, but in the mornings and afternoons it is a very fun, safe, and lively park with a lot of things to do, including as one of the reviews said, fresh handmade tamales and frequent festivals going on a few times a year, which makes for an excellent day at MacArthur Park!
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