Friends of the Park (FoP)
Friends of the Park is a committee of the LLAPA and are a group of volunteers who raise funds to help support the programs and special events at the park.
Friends of the Park as the fundraising committee for the LLAPA is independent of the County of Los Angeles and as such is recognized at a 501(c)(3).
One of the driving factors in this support is that the LLAPA represents the community of Lake Los Angeles, a community that is economically disadvantaged and the Friends of the Park provides snacks and drinks at park events at a low price and then reinvests those funds back into Park Events for the benefit of the community.
Fundraising activities include:
- Operation of a snack bar at various county activities at the Park
- Co-ordination of an annual Carnival at the Park
- Operation of a snack bar and various raffles at Movie Nights held at the Park
Funds raised by the Friends of the Park go directly back to support recreational activities at the Park.
The LLAPA Board of Directors overseas the support of activities at the Park by approving various expenditures of the funds collected with a majority vote of the Directors and has supported the following activities and programs with funds raised:
- Sparklers Cheer Program - assistance with purchase of uniforms and music
- Crocheting with a Cause - assistance with purchase of crocheting supplies
- Senior programs at the park - assistance with the purchase of supplies for raffles
- Trunk or Treat - supplies Trunkers with candy to hand out to the community during the Fall Festival
- and MANY OTHERS
Park Yarn Bombed by Crocheting for a Cause
Yarn bombing continues unchecked!
By Shirley Harriman
Lake Los Angeles – Sorensen Park – Oh my stars, leaves and pumpkins! The yarn bombing at Sorensen Park grew with beautiful stars, leaves and some pumpkins for the season. The people responsible for this act of beautification are the members of the team Crocheting for a Cause.
Erika Schwerdt, Lead with South Bay Counseling Center (SBCC) programs said, “Sometimes people are afraid to create art because they are afraid of criticism, afraid that something new may not look good, afraid to stand out. Today I achieved a new personal goal. I taught 50-90 year-olds to #YarnBomb. They learned to experiment with yarn to make something out of the ordinary. They learned that a mistake can look beautiful. They created a flower each that collectively looks like a masterpiece; something that they can be very proud of and inspire others to take the risk. I put this together for them, so they can see how amazing they are. I am a happy lady.”
During the finishing touches Saturday morning, Erika and Shirley were visited by hummingbirds attracted to the colorful flowers. To provide for these incredible creatures, a humming bird feeder is now hanging in the tree by the fence line art for all creatures to enjoy.
Some background on this group is during Parks after Dark 2018, SBCC sponsored Senior Social on Thursday evenings. The group gathered to learn how to crochet, to crochet a blanket together for a raffle, to play Bingo and socialize in general.
One of the purposes of the group Crocheting for a Cause is to give back to the community of Lake Los Angeles. Toward this goal, sponsor South Bay Counseling Center (SBCC) supplied the group with crochet hooks, looms, yarn and other materials.
The crocheting together became a charitable undertaking for the group. They decided to sponsor a blanket project for the Save the Children early education program at Wilsona School District.
There were eight blankets and eight baby’s hats crocheted to donate to Save the Children. One larger blanket was assembled by Erika Schwerdt with the squares the group crocheted.
Erika said, “I am very proud of these ladies. The group started as a social group, and then it morphed into a socially conscious group. The concept of "How can we help our community?" was echoed throughout the entire program and I hope these ladies influence others within this community.”
You do not need to be a senior to join this group. All ages are welcome and encouraged to join. The group meets each Thursday at 6:00pm in the gymnasium’s community room. It is not limited to ladies … gentlemen are welcome to join.
Don’t know how to crochet? Know how to use a loom? Want to meet new friends and connect with your neighborhood? Want to learn? Not to worry. Come and learn! Bring a neighbor or a friend with you.
The specific portion of the Bylaws of the LLAPA that reference the Friends of the Park are as follows :
ARTICLE II : INTENT AND PURPOSE
The Intent and Purpose of the Lake Los Angeles Park Association (LLAPA) is to oversee the use of the special park tax of Water, Landscaping, and Lighting District 45. This tax is to be used for the growth and development of Stephen Sorensen County Park. The Lake Los Angeles Park Association (LLAPA) shall represent the community of Lake Los Angeles in its park and recreational needs.
ARTICLE X: The Friends of Stephen Sorensen County Park shall function under the supervision of the LLAPA. The Friends committee will assist the LLAPA and Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation in the development of the Stephen Sorensen County Park – it’s programs and special events. This will be accomplished through fund raising, donations, and/or grants.