Archive for August, 2010

Introducing… The Naples Superhero!

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Naples Island

Your local Bixby Knolls superhero, The Knolls Ranger, has long known he wasn’t the only civic minded masked man in existence.  That in fact, his own frenetic heroicity was merely one consumation of a great taciturn tradition of REAL PEOPLE ducking furtively into alleyways and phone booths with garish capes and tights in hand, in order that they might do their own community some greater good.  (And make a really stunning fashion statement holus bolus).

In the past we at Knollsranger.com have sought to build public awareness of the existence of these fashionable philanthropists.  Introducing you blog-smiths to the likes of Captain Prospect and his Capital City Supersquad, Terriffica, Angel-Grinder Man, and more!  But when it came to LBC heroing the ranger thought he’d cornered the market as the old bears and bulls say.  After all, Captain Prospect is kickin’ it old skool in DC, Terriffica hangs her cape in New York, and Angle-Grinder Man is a vigilante Londoner for Kee-ripes sake!

It wasn’t until a mysterious letter was Fed Exed to the Bixby Knolls Business Office that the ranger realized not only the error in his ways, but just how capacious the hero racket had become!

Ladies and Gentlemen we bring you:  The Naples Super-hero!

An unheralded letter

Disregard the spelling snafu’s this my friends is evidence of another hero in our midst!  But who is the Naples Superhero who both writes and signs his name as simply Superhero and what are his intentions?  Is the letter meant to be received as a call for collaboration or a challenge of super-hero dominance?  Could the “grate” Mr. Huntington in fact be the late Samuel Huntington?  And if so does that mean the former Political Scientist had faked his own demise in ’08, or that he is an undead zombie?

This letter, which is noteworthy for it’s brevity as well as it’s typographical errors offers no indication.  And the accompanying photo of he and former Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neil raises more questions and relieves no answers.

Beverly O'Neil and Super-hero

Naples Superhero, if you read this, know that we received your letter and are very interested in meeting up with you to discuss future collaborations.  Might you by chance be able to attend the next Bixby Knolls First Friday?  If not, then we will continue to keep our eyes peeled for a man dressed like Mark Twain.

The Sights and Sounds of First Fridays

Saturday, August 7th, 2010

Kapn' Kula's Pyrat Party & The Knolls Ranger:  Together at Last

Howdy Ho Bixby Brethren!  The Knolls Ranger here, happy to report on the successful mounting of yet another first friday festivity!  For those of you still unawares First Fridays is a monthly art & music event occurring in Bixby Knolls!  Businesses along the northern Atlantic Cooridor extend their hours of operation, offering special deals to patrons, as well as giving local artists a venue where they can display their work.  The event is one part music festival, one part art walk, one part farmer’s market, and all parts fun!  Here’s a look at what August had to offer!

The Magic Bullet Theory

Jazz Jam band The Magic Bullet Theory injected Nino’s Italian Restaurant with pure rhythm and soul!

Mouth Painting

Averyboo Arts featured a display commemorating the work of quadriplegic Jean Cook (1932-1999) whose work was painted using her mouth.  In order to fully appreciate this difficult task FF attendees were able to use sanitary brushes to try the same thing.

The Conjugated Beliefs of Usallica

The Conjugated Beliefs of Usallica, a new world premier absurdist dystopia from the Long Beach Shakespeare Company performed to a packed house at the furniture Expo warehouse.

Former Mayor Beverly O'Neill, The Ranger, & Author Harry Saltzgaver

Former Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neill and author Harry Satlzgaver were at the Long Beach Historical Society as part of their book tour for,  “Passionately Positive: The Beverly O’Neill Story“.  We had to sneak a pic.

Timstrument

Everyone’s favorite one man band Timstrument was there!

Kaptain Kula's Pyrat Party

And Kaptain Kula’s Pyrat Party rocked the plank.

Hare Krishna Band

And Hare Krishna’s brought good cheer to Free Spirit Yoga.

Watch out Knolls Ranger!

You couldn’t miss the Big Red Bus!

Paul Forman

Some Long Beach dignitaries were pout and about such as Paul Forman…

Justin Rudd

…Justin Rudd…

And the Avon Ladies

…and the Avon ladies.

Dixieland

Big band Dixieland made big noise at The Factory.

Bixby Buckaroo's

And all of my favorite citizen’s were out.

Singing Karaoke

All in all it was a First Friday to remember.  Hope to see you in September!

The Ranger Marshals the Marshalls Grand Opening!

Saturday, August 7th, 2010

Councilwoman Gabelich, Congresswoman Richards, Bill Baker, the ranger, and more!
Get your shop on Bixby! After over a decade of decadent degradation on a plot of property in the Northern quadrant of beauteous Bixby Knolls, it was high time for a hootenanny of epic proportion when dynamite retailer Marshalls opened their ambrosial doors last Thursday to the public. The coffee and coco flowed like wine as Long Beach dignitaries and citizens alike flocked to the Grand Opening.

Can we shop yet?
To fully appreciate the grandeur of this North Long Beach victory we must understand the tremendous history behind this unveiling. So gather ‘round kiddies and travel back with me through the fogs of yesteryear to a time nearly forgotten. And as we ride the space-time continuum, I beseech you to beware of the dreaded Morlocks. (I ain’t trustin’ nothin’ that ain’t got no melanin. My regards to auld H.G.)

Gut Munching Troglodytes from Man's Future
Y’see before 4450 Atlantic was a Marshalls (holla!), it was a pigeon riddled pit of despair. Formerly a Robert’s department store, this vacant building hadn’t seen a customer in ages. But property owners at Gaska Inc. weren’t unawares of the Knolls eye sore, and in fact were working quietly night and day for the better part of six years to correct this!  Deep within their business laboratory, they labored to concoct the perfect elixer which would transform the space by the light of the full moon into the denim-jeans-and-designer-hand-bag-slinging retailer you see today! But in order to achieve this dream they needed the aide of the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency.

Amy Bodek and the Knolls Ranger
“Development of this modern Marshalls Department Store has concurrently eliminated a blighting condition at the former vacant Roberts store site and serves as a beacon for the continued revitalization of North Long Beach,” stated RDA Executive Director Amy Bodek in her now famous, “Marshalls Woot Woot!” speech. The RDA approved a $3.7 million loan (which roughly translates to ₩4,543,600,000 for our readers in South Korea) to develop the new Marshalls as well as a $500,000 façade improvement grant (614 million won, [you’re welcome Satchmojoey]). With these kind of smackaroo’s backin’ ‘em up, it was merely a matter of convincing Marshall’s parent company TJ Maxx that such a venture was a good idea. Easy peasy.

Leave it to me Gaska!
Last October Bixby Knolls residents took turns heaving bricks and boulders at the old domicile à la Shirley Jackson. (I was there y’all!) And for the better part of a year the Ed Grush Construction company had been building the beautiful Marshalls you see today.  Finally, on an unusually crisp August morning, the unveiling began…

Councilwoman Gabelich and the Ranger Remember
All of the Long beach big-wigs were at the grand opening ceremony including Congresswoman Laura Richardson, Councilwoman Rae Gabelich of the Eighth District, Chair of the Long Beach Redevelopement Agency Bill Baker, RDA director Amy Bodek, executive director of the BKBIA Blair Cohn, the Duke and Duchess of Bixby, and yours truly, the Knolls Ranger. (I raffled off a couple blow dryers.)

And the winner is...

The Ranger and the Duchess

Woo-hoo!

The Duke and Duchess

The new Marshalls is your one-stop shop for all your back to school needs.  Check them out at 4450 Atlantic!  Photos courtesy of Blair Cohn and Thomas Wasper.