Though fiercely independent, Venice also boasts one of the strongest communities of any neighborhood in Los Angeles. In no other place can you find such an array of not-for-profit organizations in just a few square miles. Venice has the longest run and most successful community clinic in the Unites States, as well as one of the most important literary organizations in the country. The old Venice jail now houses SPARC, the Social and Public Art Resource Center and down the block, a community theater whose repertoire includes resident Venetian actor Orson Bean and many others. Venice’s city council is a boisterous bunch who understand the role, purpose and importance of their community. In a place where everyone has an opinion (with a platform to voice it) it is refreshing to find so many organizations sharing goals that are based on the common good of the neighborhood.