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LA Gyms Are Allowed To Reopen Now, But Some Members Aren't Ready To Go Back

Updated
Published
A "Cleaned and Sanitized" sign is displayed on an exercise bike at Crank Fit - Dubai Indoor Cycling & Boutique Fitness Studio on June 04, 2020 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Getty Images)

Gyms and fitness outlets can now officially reopen in Los Angeles County tomorrow, as of Friday, with restrictions and many new regulations.

Silverlake pilates studio, Avenir LA wil reopen on Monday. Owner Kate Andrews reconfigured the studio so that each student is six feet or more apart. The studio will also re-start with a reduced class schedule to make time for sanitizing pilates machines.

Screenshot from Avenir's Instagram post asking clients if they'd want to come back to in-person classes.

Andrews told KPCC/LAist that per the new regulations, class attendees will be required to line up outside, 6-feet apart and wait for an instructor to open the doors (so that no one touches them). Studio members "will be getting an email [explainig] that our bathroom, our lobby space, and our water dispenser will be temporarily unavailable," Andrews said.

Since gyms were forced to close in mid-March, Avenir has been running free classes via Instagram Live five days a week to keep their community engaged.

Andrews recently polled her clients on Instagram to gauge how many of them would want to resume in-person workouts. She found about 50 percent were eager to return to in-person classes, while the other half was hesitant.

A few blocks from Avenir, on Hyperion Avenue, owner Adrienne DiMatteo has been figuring out the logistics of reopening her spin and yoga studio, Hype Silverlake.

She decided to convert the studio's parking lot into an outdoor gym, with bikes placed 8 to 12-feet apart. Because the virus can spead more easily inside, the indoor spin, yoga and HIIT classes will require guests to stay between 8 and 15-feet away from each other. So Hype will now be running ourdoor, indoor and virtual classes, for those who'd rather workout at home.

"This has been pretty challenging," DiMatteo said. "We know the coronavirus can travel 6-feet, but if there's more exertion it might be a little farther, so in my mind that means more than 6-feet," she told LAist. "It's like, far be it for me to say 6-feet isn't far enough. It's more to make me feel comfortable coming to the studio. So hopefully it works for other people as well."

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Protesters Gather In Palmdale To Seek Justice For Robert Fuller

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Photo by Josie Huang/LAist

Protesters gathered at a park in front of Palmdale City Hall today to speak out against the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's handling of Robert Fuller's case. The 24-year-old Black man was found dead in the same park, hanging from a tree on Wednesday morning -- a frightening image reminiscent of America's history of lynchings.

The Sheriff's Department said the initial results of a coroner's investigation indicate Fuller's death was a suicide. "Without going into too much detail, it doesn't appear there was any sign of a fight or struggle," Lt. Brandon Dean told KPCC/LAist on Friday.

But protesters today asked how that conclusion could have been reached without a full investigation or an autopsy. "If you can suggest suicide, I can suggest a lynching," said Laurielle Stewart, one of the protesters, suggesting that Fuller's death was a hate crime.

At 11 a.m. more than 150 people had joined the protest to demand an independent investigation of Fuller's death by the California Attorney General. The protestors marched to the sheriff's station in Palmdale. Several told LAist reporter Josie Huang that they don't trust local law enforcement.

Members of Fuller's family, who live in Lancaster, were present at today's gathering. One protester, speaking for the family, asked others to pray for them and give them space, since they are grieving.

Demonstrators placed candles and flowers around the tree where Fuller's body was found.

A memorial at the tree where Fuller's body was found. (Josie Huang/LAist)

Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer said at a news conference on Friday afternoon that the only cameras in Poncitlán Square are low-resolution and follow traffic in real time, but don't record.

"We encourage anyone with information about this incident to call Sheriff's Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500," Hofbauer added.

The City of Palmdale announced in a press release this morning that officials support a full investigation. "We will settle for nothing less than a thorough accounting of this matter," the statement says.

This is a developing story and will be updated with new information as we receive it.

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Music For The Movement

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Recording artist Kendrick Lamar performs onstage at the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards at Madison Square Garden on January 28, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for NARAS)

Ever since the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer almost three weeks ago, songs that implicitly or explicitly call for racial justice have echoed in the streets and shown up on Spotify playlists.

Add to that new protest songs by artists responding to today's movement and there's plenty of music to match the many, many feelings you're having these days — from angry to inspired to just plain fed up.

Just this week H.E.R. shared a new song, I Can't Breathe.

Here's what she had to say about writing it:

“Just by the title, you know that it means something very, very kind of painful and very revealing. These lyrics were kind of easy to write because it came from a conversation with what’s happening right now, what’s been happening, and the change that we need to see. I think music is powerful when it comes to change and when it comes to healing, and that’s why I wrote this song, to make a mark in history. And I hope this song does that.”

Check out more protest music pics from our friends at the podcast Heat Rocks.

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Saturday's LA Protests: When And Where

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Published
Protestors raise their fists in unison. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

The protests over police brutality and systemic racism continue today throughout Southern California.

Here are some we know about (this is by no means an exhaustive list):

Mid Wilshire: 2.75-mile protest run/walk, 4625 W. Olympic Blvd., 10:30 a.m.

View this post on Instagram

Over these last couple of weeks I have had an array of emotions, but above all I am encouraged. At first I was afraid to protest, now I am organizing my own. I encourage you to join me in my community as we run/walk 2.75 miles in the Mid-Wilshire area in peace, in love, in solidarity. This is what Nipsey meant when he said “The Marathon Continues.” The fight for justice does not end here. #2wiceashard #walkgoodrungood @walkgoodproductions

A post shared by Etienne (eh-tee-en) Maurice (@walkgoodetienne) on

West Valley: Northridge Mall entrance between Tampa and Shirley, 10 a.m.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by NORTHRIDGE PROTEST (@northridgeblm) on

Downtown L.A.: Buddhists for BLM (silent march to City Hall), Japanese American Museum, 100 N. Central Ave., 10 a.m.

Boyle Heights, 726 N. Soto St., 11 a.m.

Downtown L.A.: L.A. Law School march, Loyola Law School., 919 Albany St., 11 a.m.

View this post on Instagram

Join us this Saturday in a March for solidarity to end systemic racism. #blacklivesmatter

A post shared by @ loyolalawblsa_ on

Woodland Hills: Warner Center Park, 5800 Topanga Canyon Blvd., noon

View this post on Instagram

today

A post shared by @ imkathryntaylor on

Echo Park: 751 Echo Park Ave. (at the lake), 3 p.m.

Huntington Beach: Farquhar Park, 898 12th St., 4 p.m.

Santa Monica: A Rhythm for Change, Palisades Park, Ocean Ave. & Palisades Ave., 7 p.m.

USC: Social workers in solidarity with Black Lives, Jefferson Blvd. & Hoover (march to City Hall), 9 a.m.

Downtown L.A.: More skating/less hating, The Broad, 221 S. Grand Ave. (to Staples Center), noon

Whittier: March for Latinx community in solidarity with BLM, Whittier Police Station, 13200 E. Penn St., noon

Downtown L.A.: health workers in defense of Black lives, Cesar Chavez & Lyon St., 1 p.m.

Mid City: Cochran Ave. Baptist Church, 1304. S. Cochran Ave., 9:30 a.m.

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Morning Briefing: Progress Through Self-Reflection

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Protestors march through Hollywood holding and Abolish LAPD banner. (Chava Sanchez/ LAist)

Never miss a morning briefing. Subscribe today to get our A.M. newsletter delivered to your inbox.

Today, three writers share their stories about race, solidarity and self-care. Austin Cross wrote of the messages about race he internalized from his father: "After more than 30 years of playing by the rules my father taught me, I understand just what I have inherited: an antique set of rusty shackles."

Cheryl Farrell penned a piece about the community and solidarity that allows her to manage the slights and aggressions she faces as a woman of color, and of a certain age: “The Sistahood represents a legacy of women who thrive in the face of negative racial stereotypes. We have a collective resolve that influences political outcomes, effects social change, and just as important, we manage households.”

And Erick Galindo wrote about needing to get out of L.A. to recenter and experience joy, even if only briefly: “I don't know, maybe for you it's meditation or church or going for a run. But for me, jumping in the car with no particular place to go but for a meal is my balancing force.”

Self-examination is critical for all of us if we’re going to find a path forward. Hopefully, these storytellers provide some inspiration.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

Jessica P. Ogilvie


The Past 24 Hours In LA

L.A. Protests: When L.A. Pride organizers decided to hold a Black Lives Matter solidarity march, there's one thing they forgot to do — consult with Black activists. A group of surfers headed into the ocean in Santa Monica for a "paddle out" to memorialize the life of George Floyd and other victims of police brutality.

Coronavirus Fallout: Emily Guerin followed up with some businesses on a stretch of Lincoln Blvd. in Venice to see how they're doing with reopening. An emergency rule that imposed zero bail for low-level offenses as a way to prevent COVID-19 in jails is ending, though maybe not in L.A..

Horror In The Antelope Valley: The body of an African American man in his 20s was found hanging in a square outside Palmdale City Hall. Police say it was suicide, but many residents and activists are skeptical.

Affirmative Action: Voters may be able to overturn a ban on affirmative action at state agencies and universities; it’s been a divisive issue among Asian Americans.

Homelessness: L.A. County's homeless count shows a disturbing 13% rise.

Entertainment: The Motion Picture Academy unveiled its latest inclusion initiative on Friday. AirTalk's FilmWeek reviews The King of Staten Island, Da 5 Bloods, Artemis Fowl and more.

First Person: Cheryl Farrell lived in a tree-lined suburb that was perfect for morning jogs, until she noticed people seemed uncomfortable as she approached; some even crossed the street. Austin Cross continues to reflect on the lessons he learned from his father about how to stay safe as a Black man growing up in the U.S. In need of unplugging, Erick Galindo dropped off the grid for a couple of days for a road trip – and found a little self-care can go a long way.

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Weekend Reads

There's a lot going on in the world right now, and it’s hard enough to keep our day-to-day lives in order without trying to stay current on the news. But if you have some time this weekend, these articles provide some much-needed insight into the current moment in L.A., as well as news you may have missed.

A writer ties the past two weeks’ protests to the burning down of Greenwood during the Tulsa Massacre of 1921. (LA Watts Times)

Confused about how the protests played out in L.A. over the past two weeks? Check out this timeline. (Los Angeleno)

Community activists, including clergy members, are speaking out against the purchase of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza mall by local real estate developer CIM Group. (LA Sentinel, Wave Newspapers)

From beatings to vaginal searches to verbal abuse, women and gender non-conforming folks offer first-person accounts of being arrested during L.A.’s recent protests. (LA Taco)

Culver City has an ugly history of racism, dating back to the massacre of indigenous people. (Streetsblog LA)

NPR profiled The Smell, a downtown L.A. music venue that’s been around for more than two decades. (NPR)

If you’re looking to support Black-owned local businesses, here’s a list of more than 260 to choose from. (Los Angeles Times)


Photo Of The Day

A surfer takes part in a "paddle out" in Santa Monica, honoring the life of George Floyd and others who have lost their lives to police violence.

(Photo by Nicole Gormley)

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The news cycle moves fast. Some stories don't pan out. Others get added. Consider this today's first draft, and check LAist.com for updates on these stories and more. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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