Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Esotouric offers San Gabriel Valley crime bus tour May 4

Esotouric's Blood & Dumplings crime bus tour of the San Gabriel Valley
WHEN: Saturday, May 4, 2013, 12pm-4pm
WHERE: Tour departs from The Daily Dose Cafe, 1820 Industrial Street, Los
Angeles, CA 90021.
COST: $63, includes dumplings (vegetarian options available on request)
INFO: http://www.esotouric.com or call 213-373-1947.

 On Saturday, May 4, the eclectic bus adventure company
Esotouric presents its bizarre true crime and cultural history tour, BLOOD &
DUMPLINGS. The tour celebrates a surprising side of Los Angeles history not
found in tour books.

Starting from the premise that the secret heart of Southern California's
eccentric lifestyle culture beats strongest in the Eastern San Gabriel
Valley, the tour introduces passengers to such fascinating local characters
as the costumed Man from Mars Bandit, legendary record producer and
convicted murderer Phil Spector, lion farming tourist magnets Charles and
Muriel Gay, and DIY filmmaking icon Timothy Carey, whose notorious "The
World's Greatest Sinner" was shot on location in 1960s El Monte.

Heading due East out of downtown, the tour explores several historic
communities that reflect the growth and eccentricity that are hallmarks of
20th century Los Angeles. Crime Bus passengers will discover notorious,
strange, fascinating and forgotten tales from the past hundred years, each
told at the scene of the crime. They'll thrill to the freakish case of the
Man from Mars Bandit who stalked area supermarkets for months in 1951 before
meeting his match in a police sharpshooter, shock to discover the deadly
infighting among El Monte's hippie-era American Nazi Party members, mourn
the Case of the Buried Bride dragged beneath her home on her wedding day by
her secret lover, gnash teeth at the famous lion farm (home to every MGM
lion) that served lion meat BBQ on special occasions, and view scenes of
notorious cases including Phil Spector's spooky hilltop castle and James
Ellroy's slain mother Geneva (the true-life inspiration for his Black Dahlia

And since no visit to the San Gabriel Valley is complete without a delicious
Chinese meal, the Crime Bus will stop at 101 Noodle Express (one of Jonathan
Gold's picks for 99 L.A. restaurants not to be missed) to pick up a dumpling
feast, which will be enjoyed picnic-style at La Laguna de San Gabriel (aka
Monster Park), a remarkable sea-themed folk art environment recently saved
from demolition and named a California state landmark. There passengers can
enjoy their snack in the mouth of a concrete whale, or under a grinning
octopus, then pose for photos with the creatures.

All this, plus wild shootouts, dope-dealing druggists, missing Salvador Dali
paintings and the original "little girl down a well" 1940s television
sensation. Don't miss the Crime Bus tour that guide Kim Cooper calls "A dark
and daffy ride into the heart of the California psyche, packed to the gills
with the offbeat history, horror, novelty and mystery that is the reason
Esotouric exists."

For more info on Esotouric, visit

Upcoming Esotouric bus tour and special event schedule (free events starred)
Sat April 27 - The Real Black Dahlia crime bus tour
Sat April 27 - LAVA Literary Salon: A Dashiell Hammett Evening (info at
Sun April 28 -  Due to Fiesta Broadway, there will be no LAVA Sunday Salon
Sat May 4 - Blood & Dumplings crime bus tour
Sat May 18 -  Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles
*Sun May 26 - LAVA's Sunday Salon (info at lavatransforms.org)
* Mon May 27 - Tour of historic Savannah Cemetery (info at
Sat June 1 - Eastside Babylon crime bus tour
Sat June 8 - Pasadena Confidential crime bus tour
Sat Jun 15 ­ Hotel Horrors & Main Street Vice crime bus tour
Sat June 22 - Weird West Adams crime bus tour
*Sun June 30 - LAVA's Sunday Salon (info at lavatransforms.org)
Sat July 13 - Charles Bukowski's LA
Sat July 20 - The Birth of Noir: James M. Cain's Southern California
Sat July 27 - The Real Black Dahlia crime bus tour
*Sun July 28 - LAVA's Sunday Salon (info at lavatransforms.org)

Esotouric's Kim Cooper and Richard Schave are proud members of LAVA - The
Los Angeles Visionaries Association. http://www.lavatransforms.org

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