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Los Angeles, CA  —  Organizer: scody

Los Angeles Planning Thread
May 6, 2009 2:09 PM   RSS feed for this thread Subscribe

We need to pick a date and time between July 17 and July 19 and a location.

My vote is for Saturday the 18th, but of course the floor is wide open.

Also, please let me know if you're interested in co-organizing!
posted by scody to Los Angeles, CA at 2:09 PM (167 comments total)

Let the Westside vs. ? battle begin!
posted by Argyle at 2:12 PM on May 6, 2009

If this happens on the 18th or 19th, there's no Westside v. ? battle needed. I'm perfectly happy to drive over the hill on a weekend to hang out with some MeFites.

Eh, who am I kidding. For the MeFi 10th anniversary I'm even willing to brave that hill on a Friday after work.

(though Saturday/Sunday would be awesomer)
posted by eyeballkid at 2:37 PM on May 6, 2009

And I in no way mean that the decision somehow hinges on me. I just mean that I'd have no dog in that particular fight. Whatever configuration of date/location means the largest turnout I'm totally down with.
posted by eyeballkid at 2:43 PM on May 6, 2009

Yeah, I feel like location may matter less on a Saturday in terms of people being willing to drive hither and yon... but possibly more in terms of the nightmare of parking.
posted by scody at 3:20 PM on May 6, 2009

I don't have any problems with the westside on a weekend. In July the best place to be in LA is probably going to be at the beach, how 'bout someplace in Santa Monica?
posted by mullingitover at 4:05 PM on May 6, 2009

Santa Monica would be nice, if anyone has any suggestions?

I'll also throw out the very non-Westside suggestion of going back to Wurstküche. Great beer/cider selection, and yummy frites and sausages (including vegetarian ones, though I will defer to our vegetarian mefites in terms of their quality). If we had enough people confirmed, maybe we could reserve a couple of big tables there? (Since it appeared that someone had reserved half of the table we commandeered ourselves when we were there.)
posted by scody at 6:16 PM on May 6, 2009

I pine for minglage space, and "frank"ly I'd worry that we couldn't get a table big eNOUGH at Worst Cooch. (I mean, how many are we going to have - - 24ish?)
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 7:24 PM on May 6, 2009

I really like the idea of a beach bonfire/barbecue. It can roll over from a late lunch into an evening thing so people with different schedules can come and go, it should be pretty low cost so the hard-up among us won't stay home because they feel like they can't afford it, and we don't have to worry about getting an exact headcount. I'm not sure how we'd go about reserving a spot, or if there's someplace to go where we wouldn't need to. Any locals have experience?

(plus we can get some hot dogs and toothpick them together in the shape of a "WTF," and then we can bbq it! Get it? It'll be a blast!)
posted by contraption at 8:58 PM on May 6, 2009

I'm pretty sure the only beach in L.A. where bonfires are allowed is Dockweiler (located basically just due west from LAX, between El Segundo and Playa Del Rey). If people don't mind the jet noise overhead, that could be great. Keep in mind that alcohol is technically not allowed on beaches, though.
posted by scody at 9:17 PM on May 6, 2009

I can hardly wait!

Considering drive times, we may well be committed to Saturday. The only problem with Saturdays in Los Angeles is the 'shiny shirt' factor. My only gripe with Wurstküche is that it was LOUD AS FUCK. I do have some alternatives, let me know what you think -

Ye Rustic Inn - Los Feliz dive bar, with awesome cheap beer & wing specials. Lots of free lot parking, more or less centrally located, no fedora sightings. Good juke box, not crazy loud. Caveats: limited veggie options, on the small side, not sure if they do reservations.

Loteria Grill - Surprisingly good, cheap Mexican food - ($3.75 tacos/$9.00 burritos) great veggie options, jalapeno margaritas, open til 3 am. Large space, reservations available. Difficulty: Loud, Saturday night parking in Hollywood... and it's in Hollywood.

Baby Blues BBQ - Brand new BBQ place in WeHo. Holy God, the food. Aaand the drinks. Nary a hipster in sight. Reservations available and there's plenty of room. Downside: Spendy, but the portions are enormous. Street parking a bit tricky but doable. Vegetarians not devoted to side dishes kind of screwed. (That being said, the mac & cheese is a religious experience)

There's always the Golden Gopher downtown and The Daily Pint in Santa Monica, home of previous meetups, but I thought on account of the occasion we might want to branch out.

Wow, that got long.
posted by Space Kitty at 10:08 PM on May 6, 2009

I like the idea of a picnic somewhere. It'd be an excuse to finally purchase a bocce ball set.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 12:25 AM on May 7, 2009

I have one extra bocce ball.

I like the idea of beach. Aren't alcohol permits allowed? (No idea of LA County bureaucracy.)
posted by klangklangston at 12:32 AM on May 7, 2009

We have bocce AND badminton. I know, the boonies, we picnic here.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:15 AM on May 7, 2009

If you wanna be insane, we can camp, btw. Beer is allowed or completely functionally allowed at McGrath State Beach at least. That's up here. It's a blast. contraption and me love camping, obvs. But probably if you wanna camp just memail me and come camp Santa Cruz Island. Meetups are better when they're more casual than that, eh what?

Can you tell I had 48 oz of beer in the last three hours? Oy.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:19 AM on May 7, 2009

I like the idea of doing it on a Saturday, as I should be in a work frenzy around then. Is there any place with a reservable outdoor deck? We should be running up enough of a tab to justify it.
posted by Bookhouse at 11:01 AM on May 7, 2009

I'll throw out a big idea: booze cruise. Can we charter a yacht, and if so, how much? We'd buy our own booze, and include the yacht rental on our grand total. Take that, people who don't live near the ocean (or other large bodies of water)!
posted by filthy light thief at 11:25 AM on May 7, 2009

Can we charter a yacht, and if so, how much?

I truly don't mean this as sharply as it's probably going to come off, but I didn't sign up to charter a yacht. If you want to look into it, please feel free; if it turns out to be the general consensus that folks would like to do so, I'm happy to hand over the organizing reins to you or anyone else who's up for the task.

I like the idea of beach. Aren't alcohol permits allowed?

Doesn't appear to be such a thing, from what I've been able to find -- there seems to be a blanket rule of no alcohol (and no glass containers) at beaches in general, whether they're state or county-run. But a beach thang could still be great (and, you know, isn't this the point of flasks?).

Of space kitty's suggestions, I'd be most up for Loteria in Hollywood (chicken mole...mmmm). (I like the Rustic in Los Feliz, too, but I fear that on a Saturday its small size will work against us. On the other hand, we might have a Kiefer Sutherland bar fight to look forward to.) In terms of parking, I guess we could all suck it up and just pay to park at one of the lots in the neighborhood. If other folks are interested in Loteria, I could call to see if they'd do a reservation for a large group.

Is there any place with a reservable outdoor deck?

This is also a good idea. Anyone have any specific suggestions? Maybe in Santa Monica, so we could get a nice ocean breeze?

Anyway, as we continue to hash out location, I'm getting the sense that Saturday the 18th is (so far) OK for everyone, yes?
posted by scody at 12:00 PM on May 7, 2009

You can get an alcohol permit for Dockweiler, but that also involves insurance policies.
posted by hwyengr at 2:37 PM on May 7, 2009

Correction: No booze at Dockweiler, Manhattan, Redondo, Torrance, or Venice.

All alcohol must be provided by a caterer, and 1 security guard needs to be supplied for every 50 guests.

So, about that outdoor deck....
posted by hwyengr at 2:43 PM on May 7, 2009

I like the idea of beach. Aren't alcohol permits allowed?

As long as you're in three feet of navigable water at low tide, then you're under maritime law, and can do pretty much whatever you want with rather wide latitude.
posted by StickyCarpet at 3:03 PM on May 7, 2009

Is there any place with a reservable outdoor deck?

This is also a good idea. Anyone have any specific suggestions?

Barragan's in Echo Park has an outdoor private deck for parties!
posted by carsonb at 3:16 PM on May 7, 2009

I didn't sign up to charter a yacht.

I didn't imagine you would, or intend that you take on this burden. I was wondering if anyone had a decent-sized boat, or had previously rented a boat. I selected yacht for the sound of it (boat party doesn't sound as lavish as a yacht party).

As long as you're in three feet of navigable water at low tide, then you're under maritime law, and can do pretty much whatever you want with rather wide latitude.

First one to the beach charts the safe zone! (That, or we fill a raft full of booze, and require that anyone who wants to drink must be willing to wade/swim.)

It should be noted that I'm actually a light-weight, and not generally in favor of drunken mayhem. Please take all my suggestions with a grain of salt, or a drinky-umbrella of disbelief.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:45 PM on May 7, 2009

Well, if we can't have booze on the beach, we could all just take an assload of mushrooms.


My pal Rustin was dating this chick that had a swimming pool on the roof of her Mid City high rise, and would have parties up there, but he's managed to get dumped before I even got up there once.

Anyone know someone else bourgie enough to have one of those? I would buy them an account for a party on a roof with a pool.
posted by klangklangston at 3:56 PM on May 7, 2009

(I'm brainstorming.)
posted by klangklangston at 3:57 PM on May 7, 2009

I'm not pretty enough, so they won't let me in, but The Standard downtown has a very bourgie rooftop pool bar. I've been there with a group of 15 or so people with no problems (except for my aforementioned problem of not being pretty or thin enough for The Standard). And it has "vibrating waterbed pods." So there's that. Might be tough to do on a Saturday. But maybe not.
posted by The World Famous at 4:50 PM on May 7, 2009

Leaving aside the question of The World Famous's prettiness (and really, how can someone be world famous and not be at least a little pretty?), his mention of the Standard reminds me that I've been to private out-by-the-pool parties downtown at Hotel Figueroa. So I'll call them and Barragan's (thanks, carsonb) to see what kind of rates we might be looking at. While I'm at it, I can see if the Standard does private parties as well.
posted by scody at 5:10 PM on May 7, 2009

Just to throw it out there, Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica is pretty cool and right on the beach as it says on the tin. Pricey for dinner, but not bad for a lunchtime/brunchtime meetup followed by a short walk to the Pier and Promenade.
posted by eyeballkid at 5:47 PM on May 7, 2009

Shutters Google map.
posted by eyeballkid at 5:50 PM on May 7, 2009

Does anyone know if alcohol is allowed in the Griffith Park picnic areas? I can't seem to find any info other than for the observatory (where it is prohibited). We were at a bday picnic there last weekend that had alcohol, but I have no idea if it was legal. The area we were at near the carousel had a lot of nice shaded areas.

My vote is for something simple and on the cheap like a picnic where everyone brings stuff that they can share (if they want, no pressure!). I'd even volunteer to be the one to show up early enough to snag a picnic table, if that's what it takes.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 6:27 PM on May 7, 2009

My vote is for something simple and on the cheap

posted by The World Famous at 6:39 PM on May 7, 2009

Does anyone know if alcohol is allowed in the Griffith Park picnic areas?

No, and the park cops can be pretty strict about it, bordering on sort of dickish. For my b-day party last year, one of them actually asked to sniff one of our cups. We said no and he went away.

That said, Griffith is a great spot -- though I'm reasonably sure you can't reserve spots there.
posted by hifiparasol at 7:22 PM on May 7, 2009

OK, as is usually the case with me, I totally spaced on the end of mandyman's comment. I'd be happy to share early picnic-table-snagging duties, as I live within walking distance.

Though I'd be just as happy to go somewhere else. I don't think anyone has mentioned The Cat and Fiddle on Sunset yet, which has a great patio and spacious inside, and for some reason is hardly ever very crowded.
posted by hifiparasol at 7:29 PM on May 7, 2009

I grew up attending beach barbecues and tiki parties in San Diego, so that is where my next sentence is coming from. WHAT THE F**K KIND OF DAY AT THE BEACH DOESN'T INVOLVE ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION?

I... I... just can't imagine such a thing.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:12 PM on May 7, 2009

There is Wokcano which is a pretty good Pan-Asian restaurant with a large patio that takes reservations for groups. It is at 5th and Santa Monica, so it is in easy walking distance of both the Promenade and the Santa Monica Pier.
posted by skewedoracle at 11:25 PM on May 7, 2009

Griffith Park is awesome. Picnics are excellent as well. I have vague memories of birthday keggers there years past, so in my experience alcohol hasn't been a problem. No glass, red cups, piñata, etc, I'd be there in a flash.
posted by carsonb at 12:46 AM on May 8, 2009

I'm all about Saturday the 18th. And I'm also all about Griffith Park. Additionally, I'm all about being all about.
posted by katillathehun at 8:58 AM on May 8, 2009

TED: July the 19th...why does that strike me as important?
DOUGAL: I wouldn't know, Ted, you big bollocks.

While they're not taking reservations for big groups, the new Annenberg Beach House just opened to the general public. Maybe a day poolside, followed by an evening of metabauching.

Whatever you do, have fun. I'll be stuck in Oxnard all weekend.
posted by RakDaddy at 9:38 AM on May 8, 2009

RakDaddy, Ambrosia Voyeur and I will be driving through Oxnard on our way down and can offer a ride if that would help.
posted by contraption at 10:27 AM on May 8, 2009

OK, I called the Figueroa to see about their poolside bar/patio. They don't really do completely private parties, but you can arrange ahead of time to have a sort of semi-private party thing... they'll set up appetizers and a cash bar for invited guests (with wristbands to distinguish us from the rest of the rabble!). Appetizers for a party of 25-35 (which is the number I just sort of pulled out of my hat) run about $300. So assuming we receive $50-100 from The Meta Powers That Be and at least 25 people attend, we're looking at a cost of $8-10 per person, not counting drinks or parking.

I keep playing phone tag with the woman from Barragan's re: their outdoor patio, but will update once I talk to her. The Standard's website is so unbearably hipper-than-thou that I'm refusing on principle to contact them.

The Cat & Fiddle is also an excellent suggestion. I know they do reservations for large groups inside, but don't know if that extends to the patio. As hifiparsol points out, though, the patio doesn't tend to get packed till later in the evening, so if enough of us show up on the early-evening side of things, we could most likely hold down a decent number of tables.

The simple Griffith Park option also sounds great to me, as does the beach. I suspect that if people who want to drink alcohol bring modest amounts in non-glass containers, we could probably get away with it.

OK, there are just too many dang options. At least there sounds like consensus for July 18. Is it completely bossy of me to ask that responders from this point give a kind of ranking of their GENERAL preferences, so I can get a better feel of options to pursue? For example, your preferences may run as follows:

1. Gathering at bar or restaurant (you can give a specific one, or just leave as the general option)
2. Picnic in park
3. Marauding croquet match/orgy
4. Beach bonfire
posted by scody at 2:13 PM on May 8, 2009

Will do, chief.

1. Picnic in the Park
2. Beach bonfire
3. Bar/restaurant
4. Reenact Eyes Wide Shut
posted by katillathehun at 3:57 PM on May 8, 2009

1. Bar/Restaurant - I thought Barragan's was a good idea
2. A distant, reluctant second - picnic in park (flask, anyone?)
8972. Beach bonfire
8973. Anything involving me wearing a swimsuit in public.
posted by Space Kitty at 4:07 PM on May 8, 2009

I am useless for providing direction in this case. Well, mostly useless:

1. somewhere we can carry a proper conversation, without the need to shout to be heard.

I'm no good at conversing in noisy places. And allowing photographs would be ideal, though I might carry my pocket camera all the same.
posted by filthy light thief at 5:03 PM on May 8, 2009

And have we decided on Saturday, or is that still up in the air also?
posted by filthy light thief at 5:04 PM on May 8, 2009

1. Picnic @ Griffith
2. Bar/Restaurant (I'm already on record in favor of Cat & Fiddle)
3. Seconding filthy light thief's rec re: loud places
4. Space Kitty swimwear fashion show

I love you Space Kitty
posted by hifiparasol at 8:02 PM on May 8, 2009

1. Bar/Restaurant - preferably one where our group can sit aside from the rest of the dinner crowd/noise.
posted by invisible ink at 8:29 PM on May 8, 2009

1. picnic in the park (if it's Griffith or Elysian, my offer to show up early enough to claim a good table stands)
2. beach bonfire/picnic
3. bar/restaurant

This may be a bad idea, but part of me wants to find out how much it costs for a bouncy castle permit in Griffith Park.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 10:56 PM on May 8, 2009

Yeah, I"m down for sure. Agreed on no loud places.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 12:03 AM on May 9, 2009

1). Picnic in the park. But I don't have to worry about the man taking my soda pop.

2). A bar or restaurant. I might add that I had the worst meal of my entire life at Brannigans, because my party was seated next to a party of twelve who had an entire mariachi band including a healthy horn section serenading them the entire fucking time I was there. That probably won't happen twice, but I still might be suffering from PTSD.

3). Fight Club

4). Blowing sand out of my nose for a week
posted by Bookhouse at 9:11 AM on May 9, 2009

Bookhouse: I'm allergic to mariachi bands too. You've convinced me to rescind my vote for Barragans. We're all agreed on avoiding the loud and it seems we have consensus on Saturday.

But to be honest, (and I realize it's not all about me) I hear everybody on the budget issue: but this is An Occasion.

Metafilter! 10 years!! It's been such a big part of how I see the world & socialize for so long that it feels wrong not to go all out. We're in LA and we can't find anything better to do than go to the park?

Maybe I've just never been invited to the right kind of picnics.

/done bitching
posted by Space Kitty at 11:46 AM on May 9, 2009

Ooh, I was just informed that the legendary Formosa will rent out its rooftop deck. The Formosa is centrally located and renting out the deck would take care of the noise issue.

Could be sweet.
posted by Bookhouse at 12:11 PM on May 9, 2009

The Formosa has a rooftop deck? Ooooh, that sounds awesome! I'll look into it.
posted by scody at 1:00 PM on May 9, 2009

July 18th is my birthday, it is by far the best day ever.
posted by sweetmarie at 2:18 PM on May 9, 2009

It would be surreal to go to a meetup at the Formosa, cuz my first real singing gig was there. (And the owner is the only person I've ever taken to small claims.)

So even though I love the place history & space-wise, I have mixed feelings.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:10 PM on May 9, 2009

Regarding preference: Well, for me, it comes down to ideal versus practical. Ideally, we're drinking on a beach or at a pool, maybe on a rooftop or some other louche location, with an open bar and a helicopter to ferry us around while celebrities gape at how awesome we are for being members of a website that's ten years old.

Given the unfortunate problems of budget (I'm broke) and planning (I don't even know if these places exist), my priorities are:

1) A place with good drinks
2) A place with good food (brought or bought)
3) A place that doesn't run me more than, say, $40 total

After that, well, it'd be lovely to be outside, to have a nice view, to have some sort of sweet entertainment (laser tag?)… There are parks with public pools around here that seem to allow drinking, and the pools are only $2 to get into. (I understand the reluctance over the swimsuits, but c'mon, if you've been on MeFi long enough to go to one of these parties, we've already seen you stupid, we might as well see you ugly).

I'll double check on the pools and the drinking thing.
posted by klangklangston at 11:11 AM on May 10, 2009

Metafilter: We've already seen you stupid, we might as well see you ugly.
posted by Space Kitty at 11:28 AM on May 10, 2009

I wanna have a pool party so I can bring little square post-its with plus signs on them and slap them on everybody's asses. I'ma be like tehloki up in there.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:56 PM on May 10, 2009

Klang, if you could check on the pubic park/pools near you, that would be great!

I'm going to call the Formosa tomorrow, as it appears they don't answer the phones in the main office on the weekend. I'll also call a couple of the other places that have been thrown out as ideas (Wokano, Cat & Fiddle, etc.) so we can compare some prices.

Maybe we could have a sort of two-parter meetup -- outdoor fun during the day (e.g., park, pool, or beach) and a bar/restaurant shindig (preferably where we can reserve a patio or something) in the evening? That way, people can go to either, or both, depending on budget, preferences, etc. Is this a good solution to ye olde BEACH VS. BAR conundrum? (Which is really just a substitute for our usual East Side vs. West Side battle.)
posted by scody at 2:03 PM on May 10, 2009

Klang, if you could check on the pubic park/pools near you...

Oh, ho! I'm sure he can.
posted by katillathehun at 2:48 PM on May 10, 2009

HAH! Excellent! He'll be right on it, I'm sure.

Before I started working at LACMA, there was a museum map/brochure that was printed showing our visitors where they could find Pubic Parking. Since there was something like 50,000 of them and no money to reprint them, a gaggle of volunteers had to be recruited to place little stickers that said "Public" over the offending parking lot.
posted by scody at 3:13 PM on May 10, 2009

God damn it, why can't I favorite comments? I don't want to flag "pubic park/pools" and move on.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 11:04 PM on May 10, 2009

TED: July the 19th...why does that strike me as important?

Because it's my birthday!

I had no idea that mefi would be turning 10 the day I turn 30. How odd. Also odd is that I was semi planning on spending the day at Dockweiler.

I have nothing particular to add, since I imagine my birthday festivities will likely preclude me joining metafilters.

Unless we both happen to be at the same beach anyway.
posted by flaterik at 1:02 AM on May 11, 2009

The pubic parks allow booze. Unfortunately, the public parks do not. Which goes against the folks I see drinking there every weekend, but I just got a flat no from the parks folks.
posted by klangklangston at 2:57 PM on May 11, 2009

Hmm. Maybe there can still be a non-alcohol (or at least covert alcohol) daytime meetup at a park or pool, pubic or otherwise, before the official meetup that night at a bar-type place. What do the pro-picnic/pool/beach/etc. folks think of that as an option?

Regarding bar-type places: man, a surprising number of establishments are bad about answering phones during business hours or -- for those who actually do answer their phones -- having anyone available to explain what their private party policies/costs actually are.

So far, I've only gotten any useful info out of the Cat & Fiddle (in addition to the guy I talked to at the Hotel Figueroa last week about their patio bar). They do not take reservations for the patio after 5:00. They do reserve a private room for parties, but they require a $25 per person minimum in drinks/food, not counting tax and tip, which seems a little on the pricey side to me. (I know some people will certainly spend that amount on food and drink, but others won't, so I hate to basically require everyone to commit that kind of money, even factoring in the Mefi underwriting.)

The alternative plan for the Cat & Fiddle is for the majority of us assemble early enough that we could snag several large tables on the patio, and just go from there. This has the advantage of allowing people to spend what they want, but the disadvantage of not knowing how crowded/loud it's going to get later on.

I'll post more as I talk to some other venues.
posted by scody at 3:57 PM on May 11, 2009

I've been to the Cat & Fiddle often enough that I feel pretty comfortable there, so I'd be up for showing up early (with a large enough group of other follks) to claim some tables.

It's fairly unpredictable in terms of loudness and crowds, though, as scody points out. Usually it's a moderately sedate place, and it's never so crowded that everyone's ass to ass, but I'm sure we'll have a crowd of our own.
posted by hifiparasol at 3:28 PM on May 12, 2009

I think the daytime meetup followed by bar-type meetup is genius. Thanks for doing the heavy lifting, scody!
posted by Space Kitty at 4:39 PM on May 12, 2009

Ditto Space Kitty. I'll talk my wife into a day of fun with Internet People, and it will be grand.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:28 AM on May 13, 2009

Metafilter: We've already seen you stupid, we might as well see you ugly.

And with that comment, I go from "no" to "maybe." Hah!
posted by davejay at 11:08 PM on May 14, 2009

I had a dream last night that this thread got sidebarred as 'how not to plan a meetup' and I've been feeling strangely responsible every since.
posted by Space Kitty at 2:27 PM on May 17, 2009

Nah. Blame the people at the Formosa's main office who don't answer their phone or return messages. I'm thinking I'll just have to stop by one night on my way home from work this week and see if I can talk to someone in person.

As for daytime outdoorsy plans for swimwear portion of our competition part one of the Amazing Two-Part Meetup, I'll leave that to the folks who seem to know more about park/picnic planning than I do.
posted by scody at 2:40 PM on May 17, 2009

This is the picnic area that I've been to in Griffith Park. Is that cool? You can even ride the carousel if so inclined. Noon o'clock for picnicky lunchy sorts of things?
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 10:18 AM on May 18, 2009

Has anyone considered Cinespia? I am not sure what film is playing that date but it's sorta picnicish, you can bring alcohol and the movie is usually AMC fare.

Other than that bar/restaurant would be acceptable.
posted by zinc saucier at 3:14 PM on May 18, 2009

Has anyone considered Cinespia?

Yes, and it's fantastic, but it's still a movie, which means talking is frowned upon, and that's not so great for a meetup of this nature. (Not that we shouldn't do it one of these days.)
posted by katillathehun at 6:07 PM on May 18, 2009

My idea was to actually sit way in the back so as not to diminish anyone's viewing experience. I probably should have said so in my previous comment.
posted by zinc saucier at 7:37 PM on May 18, 2009

I like the idea of cinespia for a regular meetup, but I don't think it'd be cool if ~20-40 of us showed up there to hang out and chat while a movie plays, even if we are in the back. There's also that whole $10 "donation" for entrance thing.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 1:32 PM on May 19, 2009

I would also like to point out that the last Cinespia was PACKED. And sold out. Not the best place to try to find people.
posted by flaterik at 3:24 PM on May 19, 2009

mandymanwasregistered - thanks for the google maps! That looks fantastic to me! The burnt area is rather stunning/tragic, which is an additional point of appeal. I really like the idea of a two-partk Meetup!
posted by filthy light thief at 11:37 AM on May 20, 2009

If we find a decent place without too much extraneous noise (debauchery not included), I would be happy to kick down $50 to $100, or possibly more, to help offset costs. I might have to figure out how to print my firm name on beer mats or keg cups so the feds don't get pissed when I write it off, but hey...
posted by Hylas at 1:28 PM on May 22, 2009

I just ordered my shirt (not MeFi-specific, but I thought it fitting, given there is a MeFi version of the original), any news or new ideas on potential venues?
posted by filthy light thief at 11:12 AM on June 2, 2009

Not a yacht, but if anyone would like to go the Party Bus route, it would be around $500 for the evening.

Upstairs at Clifton's is a great spot for groups, huge tables and cafeteria service, but no booze. Philippe's also has space upstairs, cafeteria service, and they serve beer and wine.
posted by Scram at 10:39 AM on June 3, 2009

I've failed in my mission to pop round to the Formosa and successfully talk to a manager, despite the fact that I live less than a block away. I can only blame my new job and, more truthfully, my miscreant nature. I will try to get there this weekend unless someone else wishes to lift this burden from my puny shoulders.
posted by Bookhouse at 11:28 AM on June 3, 2009

Yikes, friends annual Huntington Beach bonfire/bbq is on the 18th. I pray the traffic gods grant a miracle for me to appear at both.
posted by liquoredonlife at 5:22 PM on June 6, 2009

How busy does Griffith Park get? Should we be claiming a number of tables or a set amount of space? It looks pretty big and rather fantastic.

Philippes sounds like a keen place, they're open until 10pm, and we can reserve space.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:56 PM on June 11, 2009

Also: how big is Griffith Park? How could we find each-other, beyond MeFi-colored balloons, or lots of odd signs?

As for potential evening meetup locations: could we go with a hierarchy, should the first location not work out for some reason? And/or set up a phone tree/list?
posted by filthy light thief at 3:31 PM on June 16, 2009

Hi all,

Sorry for being MIA -- I had some health problems in May that put me out of commission for awhile, and have been catching up with craziness at work since then, so haven't had much planning time. I did finally manage to speak to an actual human at the Formosa, who gave me the manager's office #, so I was at least able to leave a message. Hopefully I'll hear back in the next day or two. I also have a call out to the Culver Hotel (suggested at the meetup by skewedoracle and known for hosting the entire munchkin cast during the filming of The Wizard of Oz) to see about one of their private lounge/bars.

Also, skewedoracle has awesomely offered to help with some organizational stuff (haha, my nefarious plan to get someone drunk and pliant at the meetup last week is coming to fruition). The suggestion of having the 10th Party at a bowling alley also came up during last week's meetup (though I totally forget who originally offered the idea!), so I think he's looking into some possibilities there.

Phillipe's sounds like a good possibility, though I wonder if the fact that it closes at 10:00 is a problem.

Just to return to an idea that was floated earlier: any interest in the sort of semi-private party option at the Hotel Figueroa poolside bar?
posted by scody at 3:52 PM on June 16, 2009

HEY! I actually have something concrete to report about the Formosa -- their very friendly manager called me right back. He said that the rooftop is already reserved for that night, but that they would be able to reserve the patio bar for us. Here's the details:

- There's no fee to reserve, assuming a turnout of around 50 (which is what I am eyeballing based on the current numbers: 29 attending, 41 maybe).
- Cash bar.
- For food, we can order some appetizer platters ahead of time; people can also order individual dishes if they want during the evening.
- Parking: valet ($5), lot parking at the Target complex around the corner, or street parking
- Patio is OK to smoke.
posted by scody at 4:51 PM on June 16, 2009

OoOOOOo! A vote for Formosa, right here...
posted by Space Kitty at 11:09 PM on June 16, 2009

Formosa sounds perfect. And three cheers for scody!!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:16 PM on June 16, 2009

I like the Hotel Figueroa idea, but we would be dealing with the traffic from this at the Staples Center.

The Formosa is a cool spot. I'm down.

I had some health problems in May that put me out of commission for awhile

Stigmatic eyes or acute bourbon poisoning?
posted by zinc saucier at 12:39 AM on June 17, 2009

Is this the right Formosa? If so, it's a mere 7 minutes from the Griffith Park, according to Google. This all sounds fantastic to me.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:00 AM on June 17, 2009

Yeah, a mere seven minutes on your flying horse.

Yay, scody. I happily vote for the Formosa.
posted by Bookhouse at 11:23 AM on June 17, 2009

Count me as a yea vote on Formosa as well.
posted by eyeballkid at 2:34 PM on June 17, 2009

Stigmatic eyes or acute bourbon poisoning?

Heh. Actually, I was bleeding whiskey out of my side. (Damn Romans piercing me with their spears. I'm all, I'M NOT THE MESSIAH, and they're all, BUT WE'RE ROMANS AND WE'VE GOT SPEARS)

Anyhow, sounds like the Formosa is the winning option indeed -- many thanks to Bookhouse for the original suggestion. (And many thanks to mandyman as well for nailing down the details of the Griffith Park picnic.)
posted by scody at 2:43 PM on June 17, 2009

My pegasus seats 3, maybe 4 if we all hold on really tightly.

And I had that information backwards: 7.1 miles, traveled in 18 minutes.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:10 PM on June 17, 2009

Also: did the preview mapping fail, or is it just me? The bonus meet-up location (Griffith Park) is mapped in the middle of Los Angeles, instead of in the hills.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:13 PM on June 17, 2009

Yay, we can haz a meetup!
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 4:20 PM on June 17, 2009

Yeah, the preview map for the picnic is wonky. I had to email the mods to post the bonus meetup at all, because I kept getting an error message (since the "address" isn't really an address). I think the link to the google map of the picnic works OK though.
posted by scody at 4:51 PM on June 17, 2009

[ok, the bonus meetup should be in the correct spot on the map.]
posted by pb at 7:25 PM on June 17, 2009

thanks, pb!!
posted by scody at 8:19 PM on June 17, 2009

Thanks scody and pb!
posted by filthy light thief at 8:19 PM on June 17, 2009

Thanks filthy light thief, scody and pb!
posted by davejay at 4:54 PM on June 18, 2009

I have met filthy light thief already and he's awesome. But for the rest of you, just look for the guy in the Abercrombie and Fitch underwear! :O
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:03 PM on June 18, 2009

I am not one to flaunt my undies, thank you very much.

Well, beyond talking about them in a public forum.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:19 AM on June 19, 2009

Hip hop hooray for Scody et al!
posted by dhammond at 5:13 PM on June 23, 2009

Scody, marvelous! Well done! Since I can't remember anyone's name 5 seconds after meeting them, I intend to bring nametag stickers and pens. Compliance will be mandatory. You will be stickered.
posted by Dilemma at 10:19 PM on June 23, 2009

I'm tempted to buy Hello Wars stickers in bulk for this purpose. I think it'll remain as a temptation, not a reality.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:47 AM on June 24, 2009

You will be stickered.

Just bring enough for my sockpuppets too, ok? Spartacus, Ishmael, and Cornelius aren't nice argyles. (Nice Argyle works for Disney.)
posted by carsonb at 1:06 AM on June 25, 2009

Hey, awesome.

I am going to be in LA for this meetup, instead of PDX, cause otherwise I would be traveling for like the nth weekend in a row.

Do since it appears we have a location, do we want to post the "this is the location" thread?
posted by mrzarquon at 8:03 PM on July 1, 2009

We have the locations and times pegged on the front page of this section, and it seems the discussion has died down. I expect it'll pick up the week before, which is already NEXT WEEK. My, how time slips by and all that.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:50 AM on July 2, 2009

9 days and counting!

Should we bring food-like stuff to the picnic? Can we cook things in a BBQ pit/structure? Should we bring party favors or games for grassy spaces? Or to each their own, and we'll sort it when we get there?
posted by filthy light thief at 12:48 PM on July 9, 2009

What about a cake? What's a tenth birthday party without a cake?
posted by Asparagirl at 10:18 PM on July 9, 2009

My plan for the picnic is to get there early (definitely by 11am, but likely earlier) and claim a table. I can twitter my precise location once I'm there and will do my best to make a sign. Balloons would probably help people find the table too. My ideal is that everyone brings their own stuff (blankets, food, plates, cups etc) and then those so inclined can share. As for grilling, I'm not sure how many are bbqs available, but I can twitter about that once I'm there with a table. The last picnic I was at didn't have a one super nearby. Maybe I'll bike over to the park tomorrow to scope out ideal spots.

It would be awesome if people brought picnicky fun stuff and maybe we can just use the thread for coordination. For example, I have a kite I will bring.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 12:22 AM on July 11, 2009

I'll be bringing bocce and badminton and probably some chow.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:29 AM on July 11, 2009

I've got the cake thing covered.
posted by Thin Lizzy at 11:37 AM on July 11, 2009

Am I correct that Griffith Park doesn't allow alcohol so I should go ahead and bring crack instead?
posted by Justinian at 9:51 AM on July 14, 2009

What should we do for potential car/van/buspooling? I'll be driving down from San Luis Obispo for the picnic, and leaving around 9am. We should be there a bit after noon (Google maps says the drive will be 3 hrs 20 minutes, we'll see). I'm not sure of my whole plans for the day, as my wife has some friends in the area, and I don't think we'll be at the park for 8 hours.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:23 AM on July 14, 2009

... and we'll be leaving Saturday night to get back to Santa Barbara to spend time with my family. Our car seats 5, though that can be a cozy ride.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:24 AM on July 14, 2009

OMG, yay bocce!

This god forsaken heat has caused me to not yet bike over to check out our options, but I promise I will take care of that today. As for BBQ, you definitely can't bring your own grill (they're a little sensitive about that what with the park going up in flames a few years ago), but I will check for the public ones.

Yes, alcohol is not permitted in the park, so leave the keg at home and bring a flask, if that's your thing.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 2:47 PM on July 14, 2009

I checked out the picnic grounds today and this is my assessment.

I will try to nab some of the tables in one of the bbq areas (where they have official grills cemented into the ground). Once I have nabbed such things, I will update on my abandoned twitter feed. If you want my cell to contact me, mefi mail me and I'll give it to you--just don't go leaving it on bathroom walls or anything. I would bring balloons, but they won't really help much under the trees of the picnic area, so look for a blue sign of some sort. If anyone else wants to show up early and keep me company as I hold down the fort, that would be most excellent.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 5:24 PM on July 14, 2009

ooh, birthday cake for the picnic! I am working on bringing Mr. Scody with me to Griffith Park, as he has to work Saturday night and thus can't make it to the Formosa.

Speaking of which: I just got off the phone with the Formosa and ordered a big round of appetizer platters (fries, chicken satay, calamari, vegetable tempura, vegetable spring rolls). With tax and tip, I'm estimating it will be about $250-300 going on my credit card. I'll be reimbursed $100 from Matt, so if everyone who attends could kick in $5 to me for the remainder, that should cover it (unless something weird happens and, like, only 15 people show up. In which case, we're going to all be enjoying a lot of pricey appetizers).

I'll aim to be there right around 8:00; if anyone gets there before I do, the manager who is working with us is named Chao. Remember: we're back on the patio. Parking is street, valet ($5), or in the Target lot. Be there or be a member of Fark!
posted by scody at 5:39 PM on July 14, 2009

I would bring balloons...

I have a latex balloon phobia. x2 if they're outdoors. Srsly. Signs are better.

posted by Thin Lizzy at 6:54 PM on July 14, 2009

Damn, I was just informed of the Wiener Nationals at the Los Alamitos Race Course, starting at 6pm. If not for the $300 of appetizers, I'd offer that we postpone the dinner/eating part of the night until later.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:40 PM on July 14, 2009

Got the formal okay from soon-to-be-ex-wife to bring the kids. I'll be at Griffith Park at noonish tomorrow, Saturday the 18th. We are coming from Ventura/Ojai.

I am planning on bringing punch, ice, BBQ stuff and I insist on sharing it, so don't be shy. My plan is to grab some ribs and garlic bread as well, and I will bring more than me and the kids can eat, so bring your appetite. I'll throw together something veggie related too. I think/know we have some picnic stuff at home, paper plates and all; I'll bring whatever I can find.

I'd be a little better prepared, but I didn't get an okay till late.

If you are in the Ventura area, and were going to put this off because of the distance, we have three spaces available to car pool. We won't be staying late; I'd love to go to the evening deal, but with the kids, not feasible for me, so we'll be coming back in the late afternoon/early evening.
posted by Xoebe at 8:37 AM on July 17, 2009

I plan on making banana bread muffins tonight, and I can bring a bunch of chicken breasts (bought a bunch at CostCo). Also, I'll bring some park-appropriate games (not sure what all is hiding in storage).
posted by filthy light thief at 9:05 AM on July 17, 2009

I'm bringing my daughter as well. I'll bring some chips & snacks.
posted by mogget at 9:18 AM on July 17, 2009

If you are in the Ventura area, and were going to put this off because of the distance

LOL I'd carpool from Vta but I'll be staying late, ye grownups!

Hey I'll also bring my little boombox, so bring CDs and iPods, DJ types!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:59 AM on July 17, 2009

I teach a class Saturday afternoon, so I will be at the Formosa only.
posted by effluvia at 12:37 PM on July 17, 2009

I'll bring some pesto pasta to share as well, I forgot to say. Yay picnic!
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 3:13 PM on July 17, 2009

This is my first day without having to run around in about a month. I wont make it to the park, but will be at Formosa.

Anyone driving from west of the 405 want to give me a ride there or back?
posted by mrzarquon at 10:23 AM on July 18, 2009

In a tragic turn of events, I will be missing mandyman(wasregistred)'s fabulous pesto pasta, but I will see you all at the Formosa. WOO-HOO!
posted by Space Kitty at 10:52 AM on July 18, 2009

Ditto - not arriving at the park, but we'll be at The Formosa.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:15 PM on July 18, 2009

It's obviously too late for the picnic, but is it too late to RSVP for the Formosa?
posted by betweenthebars at 12:25 PM on July 18, 2009

I'm on my way! Can someone post up GPS coordinates?
posted by liquoredonlife at 12:38 PM on July 18, 2009

Yeah, I'm not making it to the park, either, but I'm still on for the Formosa.
posted by katillathehun at 1:17 PM on July 18, 2009

I'm bailing on the park, feel like a schmuck, but too much to do. See y'all tonight!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:18 PM on July 18, 2009

We're near the tennis courts if anyone is looking for us.
posted by Bookhouse at 2:04 PM on July 18, 2009

N34 7'59" W118 16'55"
posted by liquoredonlife at 2:04 PM on July 18, 2009

I'm coming late to the park... just finished making the potato salad. God, remind me never to boil potatoes AND fry bacon in this kind of heat again.
posted by scody at 2:08 PM on July 18, 2009

D'oh! I went toward the merry-go-round instead of toward the tennis courts. Oh well, at least my daughter got to ride the merry-go-round and play in the park for a while. Have fun tonight, everyone!
posted by mogget at 3:19 PM on July 18, 2009

Considering I woke up at noon I didn't have much chance at the park but I'm hoping to be at Formosa as well. Now to decide if I want to be That Guy who wears the metafilter shirt to a metafilter meetup.
posted by Justinian at 4:34 PM on July 18, 2009

oh gads, the heat really took it out of me... I've been headachey and dizzy all afternoon. It looks like we'll be eating potato salad for a few days at casa scody. See everyone tonight at the Formosa!
posted by scody at 4:48 PM on July 18, 2009

I'll be there tonight too. Look for the doofus asking all the drunk people if they're from the Internets.
posted by chicainthecity at 6:03 PM on July 18, 2009

Formosa, tonight, bitches!
posted by Asparagirl at 6:27 PM on July 18, 2009

After doing Algebra homework all afternoon, I'm ready for some fun!
See you all tonight!
posted by ApathyGirl at 6:28 PM on July 18, 2009

Now to decide if I want to be That Guy who wears the metafilter shirt to a metafilter meetup.

I suppose if you wanna be That Suave, Debonair, and Worldly fellow you can wear your MeFi shirt to a MeFi meetup. We missed those of you who bitched out of the park meetup; it was a gentle, warm good time. Looking forward to the Formosa!
posted by carsonb at 6:36 PM on July 18, 2009

Good times. Good times, folks.
posted by katillathehun at 12:31 AM on July 19, 2009

The cupcakes were made of win.
posted by ApathyGirl at 1:44 AM on July 19, 2009

Great meetup people even if a lot of you slunk out quite early. It's Saturday!
posted by Justinian at 2:26 AM on July 19, 2009

I'm not even home yet and I've heard from ColdChef that my dress is cute, so I take it there are pix??? Link?!?
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 2:41 AM on July 19, 2009

Top of the previous page! Or here. :]
posted by liquoredonlife at 8:02 AM on July 19, 2009

I just want to say that this photo is made of so much awesome. So brazen... so bold.
posted by katillathehun at 9:31 AM on July 19, 2009

Also, Scody is a million times fantastic for pulling this whole thing together!
posted by katillathehun at 9:54 AM on July 19, 2009

Yes, she is. :)
posted by miss lynnster at 10:08 AM on July 19, 2009

And for those of you who wanted me to e-mail you with Smokehouse details, I'm gonna forget. Sorry. So here they are: *this* Wednesday, 8:30pm jazz jam session@the Smokehouse in Burbank. I'll sing the first 4 songs or so, then host the evening. Maybe sing another one later, I dunno. Depends on who shows up to play/sing.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:12 AM on July 19, 2009

I say we start planning our next meetup now while the hangover is still fresh in our minds.
posted by zinc saucier at 10:16 AM on July 19, 2009

Here are my photos.

If folks are interested, I'd be up for organizing a west side meetup at some point in the near future. There is a horrible / awesome venue that has turtle racing near me, but also lots of space to move about, and an outdoor seating area and parking.
posted by mrzarquon at 11:03 AM on July 19, 2009

Thanks to Scody and the person who provided the incredible edible cup cakes. Best black flag that could be had in Los Angeles.

And thanks to Matt nth for bringing his awesome friend Sarah. She's a gem, sorry she's leaving the Left Coast for Red Bank.
posted by effluvia at 12:01 PM on July 19, 2009

Photos - actually by my wife, not me (the "link here" doesn't give an option for non-members spouses). Note: these are all with no flash, in deference to those who may not like flash (OK, actually because we despise flash). So, somewhat darkish; that you see anything at all is thanks to the combo of the D300 chip and the heroically fast Sigma 28 mm lens.
posted by VikingSword at 1:02 PM on July 19, 2009

There is a horrible / awesome venue that has turtle racing near me

Make that double-plus awesome. Mr. Scody and I wound up there on our first date when we got lost going to some gallery opening we had originally planned on attending. Turtle racing + bourbon = LOVE
posted by scody at 1:14 PM on July 19, 2009

The venue you describe is Brennan's Pub.

The guy who runs the turtle races is a complete jagoff. He tried to badass me one night, accusing my friend of pointing at the turtles. He drags the owner over to me and my friend.

Me: Hey, Steve.

Owner(Steve): What's up?

Jagoff: This guy pointed at the turtles!

Owner(Steve): Did you?


Steve turns around and leaves. Jagoff fumes.
posted by zinc saucier at 2:00 PM on July 19, 2009

Totally sweet, though I kinda wish that I'd introduced myself to the folks I didn't know.
posted by klangklangston at 2:39 PM on July 19, 2009

Scody- that was a seriously awesome meet-up. Many real-life favorites to you for setting it up.
posted by Thin Lizzy at 2:39 PM on July 19, 2009

Still recovering. Best meetup ever!
posted by Space Kitty at 4:14 PM on July 19, 2009

1. thank you to scody for organizing.
2. it was fantastic to meet so many folks, and my apologies for not remembering names well enough that I could tag more people in the albums (reminder: please add mefite name tags to the Flickr photos, for posterity).
3. thank you to all the photographers - my dinky camera is only good for so much in the way of night pictures (I have more of the vicinity of The Formosa, but no pictures with MeFites)
4. sorry I ducked out early, but the drive back to Santa Barbara wouldn't have been a good one if I stayed much later.
5. turtle racing sounds awesome, even if the turtle racer is a jerk.
6. wine tasting + camping also sounds awesome, partially because that means less driving for me and Mrs. filthy light thief, assuming it happens in the Santa Ynez area (suggested meetup by contraption)
posted by filthy light thief at 7:52 AM on July 20, 2009

Had a great time. Also wish I talked to more people I didn't know. Peace to all y'all who came out, in particular scody for her organizational prowess and Thin Lizzy for the fantastic cupcakes.

Keep watching the skis!
posted by dhammond at 9:10 PM on July 20, 2009

I rather wish I could've been there, because the LA mefites I have met so far were awesome.

But it was also a birthday for me and I was busy having an awesome time at a hot springs. I will come to another meetup soon because you people are great!
posted by flaterik at 12:38 AM on July 21, 2009

p.s. thanks for not laughing at me after my fifth drink. Next time I think maybe 4 would be good :)
posted by Justinian at 12:02 PM on July 22, 2009

We were laughing WITH you.
posted by miss lynnster at 6:04 PM on July 27, 2009

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