Tag Archive for: vendors

Walking around Echo Park Lake yesterday was an experience residents haven’t seen in quite a while on a Sunday: green grass occupied by picnickers, families, and a few necking lovebirds. The northern end of Echo Park Lake was really, really quiet with the exception of the occasional jingle from an ice cream cart bell. It seems that word got around after last week’s “crack-down” at Echo Park Lake, during which officers cited vendors for soliciting on public property. Even though just a few citations were issued, it certainly had an effect.

Residents and The Eastsider LA reported yesterday that a few Rampart Division patrol cars and officers had posted up throughout the day on various corners of the Lake. They were ready to enforce not a soliciting on public property violation like last week (which it seems may not be entirely and legally applicable), but for those who didn’t have resale licenses. Deputy City Attorney Andre Quintero seemed a bit surprised at Thursday night’s Echo Park Improvement Association meeting when told about the previous Sunday’s activity. Having worked on this issues for about a year now (in relation to the city law that was overturned when Venice Beach activists sued for free speech violations), he wasn’t sure whether or not a soliciting on public property violation applied to the Echo Park Lake vendors.

Those who have been actively working on clearing the vendors from Echo Park Lake on Sunday are relieved to “have the park back.” Other residents might have mixed feelings about losing the vendors from the Lake because, really, who cares if someone’s trying to make a buck in this economy? But arguments seem to always come down to one thing: It’s a lake, it’s a park, and that’s what it should be used for.

I recommend taking a gander through the article published yesterday by The Eastsider LA, and decide for yourself whether or not it’s a good thing to cite vendors at the lake.

Related articles:

  • “Police try a new strategy to sweep out Echo Park Lake swap meet vendors.” August 8, 2010, The Eastsider LA
  • “Vendors at Echo Park Lake get the boot.” August 1, 2010, Echo Park Now
  • “The many facets of the Echo Park Lake swap meet.” March 24, 1010, Echo Park Now

Picnickers and swap meet vendors

The Eastsider LA is reporting that Rampart Division police officers showed up at the Echo Park Lake swap meet today to “warn and educate the vendors about the law,” Sgt. Joel Miller told the Eastsider. Several vendors were also cited for “soliciting on city property.”

We have written extensively about this issue before, covering the legality vs. illegality issues and more. More recently, the main concern revolves around a small number of individuals who are reportedly selling spaces on the grass to potential vendors. One resident told everyone at the EPIA Town Hall meeting in July about a man offering those spaces for $20 and $40, and was apparently carrying a machete.

Another resident commented on the Eastsider LA article today about their experience, writing: “Well I tried to walk home several Saturdays late in the evening and when I saw the ropes, strings, plastic bags, hangars, yellow tape, and as recently as July 31 brown mailing tape marking the spots. When I approached the obvious markings I was approached by a tall man who asked me ‘Tienes en Lugar?'”

Perhaps these reports from residents, which surprised the Rampart Division officer who was present at the meeting, are the reason why police showed up earlier today to disperse the crowd.

A new round of discussions about the swap meet at the Echo Park lake is taking place on the Echo Elysian Neighborhood Council Forum, starting with a resident who drove by the Park at nearly 2:00 am last Saturday night and noticed the “whole north end of the park was already ringed with blankets.” After some discussion, Alejandra Marroquin from Garcetti’s office chimed in with an update, writing:

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