In Touch With Nature at Augustus F. Hawkins Natural Park | KCET
In Touch With Nature at Augustus F. Hawkins Natural Park
But even a place that many deride as "The Hood" or "The Ghetto" can still yield the most pleasant surprises.
On the northeast corner of Slauson and Compton avenues lies a dense, green oasis known as Augustus F. Hawkins Natural Park, an 8.5-acre open space designed to bring the chaparral to the concrete in every way possible.
The park was built in 2000 by the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy on the site of a former DWP pipe storage facility, and was transferred to the city of Los Angeles five years later. The park was named after the late U.S. congressman, who, in 1963, became the first African American member of congress elected west of the Mississippi. He represented the southern Los Angeles County area for nearly 30 years.
True, this is a man-made re-creation of a native wilderness, but the beauty of a native wilderness is that it's largely low-maintenance and pretty much runs on its own once the ecosystem is set into motion. Perhaps it's not much a re-creation, but way for nature, in a confined space, and initiated by human intervention, to resume itself after a long hiatus.
Upon leaving the park, I headed north on Compton Avenue. Just mere yards past the exit, and right outside the park's gates was a sobering reminder of the dangers of the human world: A makeshift memorial shrine, comprised of photo frames, flowers and candles, that marked the location where a child was killed.
That only underscored the value of the natural park environment to this community -- as a respite from the modern world, and as a way to soften the rough edges of city life.
For ongoing environmental coverage in March 2017 and afterward, please visit our show Earth Focus, or browse Redefine for historic material.
KCET's award-winning environment news project Redefine ran from July 2012 through February 2017.
What truly matters? Ali Behdad, professor of literature; Kristy Edmunds, artist and curator; and Michael Eselun, chaplain for the Simms-Mann/UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology discuss the important things in life.
‘Bombshell’ Exposes Media Mogul’s Toxic Sexual Harassment Culture at Fox News on Screen at the KCET Cinema Series
After the screening, KCET Cinema Series host Pete Hammond sat down with director Jay Roach.
The U.S. currently incarcerates more people per capita than any other nation in the world. Police forces and school systems are beginning to use diversion tactics to redirect young people away from criminal records.
- 1 of 225
- next ›