Sycamore Grove Park

Once owning a notorious reputation as a hamlet of debauchery, the Sycamore Grove area has a rich history of transformation.


At the turn of the 20th century, the Pacific Electric Railway made daily stops at this once thriving red-light district, unloading thrill seekers and miscreants. At the urging of the area's concerned neighbors, Sycamore Grove was officially designated a park when the city of Los Angeles purchased the land in 1905. Cleansed of its illicit past, the park became a popular recreational spot featuring well kept grass, picnic tables, and a bandshell that showcased a number of concerts. Sycamore Grove Park was also the site of annual State Picnics, where residents from the mid-west who had migrated to Los Angeles would gather to celebrate their home state.

Today one of the oldest parks in Los Angeles, the 15-acre Sycamore Grove Park offers the perfect setting for relaxation and recreation on the banks of the Arroyo Seco. The park is home to many Sycamore trees, children's play areas, tennis courts, outdoor gym equipment, and the historic Sousa-Hiner Bandshell. When you go, check out the colorful Haramoknga Mural at Glenmary Archway across the street from the park. For lunch, consider taking a stroll over to Taco Fiesta.

TRANSIT: Accessible by the Metro Gold Line, disembark at Southwest Museum Station. Also accessible by the 81 bus, disembark at Figueroa and Woodside.

CAR: Take the Pasadena Freeway (CA-110), west on Avenue 43 exit, right on Figueroa St. Park on the street.

Sousa-Hiner Bandshell
Edward Hiner conducted many concerts on the Sycamore Grove Park stage, located across the street from his home. The Highland Park Heritage Trust named the stage after him and his good friend, John Phillip Sousa in 2006.
Sycamore Grove Park
Los Angeles, CA 90042


Haramoknga Mural at Glenmary Archway
"Haramoknga - Place Where People Gather" is a new mural at Highland Park's historic Glen-Mary Archway. It was created by Pola Lopez, Heriberto Luna and a team of 15 youth artists.
4671 Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90042

Casa de Adobe
Modeled after the Rancho Guajome, the Casa was built by the Hispanic Society of California in 1917 and donated to the Southwest Museum in 1925.
4605 Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90042

Taco Fiesta
Because this stand has limited seating, eat your tacos outdoors at the Carlin G. Smith Recreation Center or the Montecito Heights Recreation Center.
4501 Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90065
(323) 223-5478

Chico's Mexican Restaurant
This family restaurant specializes in pupusas - a traditional Salvadoran dish. Pupusas are corn tortillas filled with either cheese, beans, or meat.
100 Avenue 50
Los Angeles, CA 90042
(323) 254-2445

Story continues below

We are dedicated to providing you with articles like this one. Show your support with a tax-deductible contribution to KCET. After all, public media is meant for the public. It belongs to all of us.

Keep Reading