One on One with the Legends

Gatinho —  December 11, 2007

Indulge me on an off day (for Kurt and the boys), so I can burden you with a little City of Los Angeles history. It’s for a good cause, and it does involve the Forum Blue and Gold.

Los Angeles mayor James R. Toberman holds the distinction of switching on the city’s first electric streetlights. He served from 1872 to 1874 and again from 1878 to 1882 and was originally one of President Abraham Lincoln’s revenue assessors.

After helping to create the “Hollywood Holding Company”, he would have a part in the building of key Hollywood landmarks including the Roosevelt Hotel, the El Capitan Theatre, the Max Factor building and, Grauman’s Chinese Theater.

However, in the early 1900’s, his 29 year-old son Homer passed away. To honor their son, Toberman and his wife Emma established $25,000 in memoriam to the city of Los Angeles. The organization that was built from Toberman’s original donation still stands to this day in memory of his son.

Toberman Neighborhood Center, then the Homer Toberman Mission, was built in Echo Park in 1903 and by 1937 the mission had moved to its current location in San Pedro. It is one of the oldest charities in Los Angeles.

Their services are vital to the Harbor community and include after-school tutoring and mentoring, family counseling, and gang prevention and intervention. And their mission has been a successful one, as Toberman was named “Non-Profit of the Year” by the United Way of Greater Los Angeles in 2006.

So how does this involve the Lakers? Well…

What do you get the Laker fan who has everything? Or how about the Bruin fan? or any fan of the history of the game? How about a chance to be in the presence of some of the greatest players and coaches the game has ever seen?

Emceed by Stu Lantz, on January 12th, 2008 at the newly built Toberman Gym will be a live auction, lunch, photo opportunities, and a panel Q and A with these legendary guests:

John Wooden: the Wizard of Westwood
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 6 time MVP and NBA champ
Jamal Wilkes NCAA and NBA champion
Keith Erickson NCAA and NBA champion
Bill Walton NCAA and NBA champion
A.C. Green NBA champion
Tex Winter: Originator of the Triangle offense
Ann Meyers Drysdale FIBA Hall of Famer and Phoenix Mercury GM
Marge Hearn wife of the Voice of the Lakers Francis “Chick” Hearn
and Bill Sharman of USC, the Celtics teams of Russell and Cousy, and coach of the ’72 championship team

So, if you’re interested call 310-832-1145 x120 to reserve your seat today. Seating is limited to 300 people and tickets are $250 each. Those looking for a truly once in a lifetime event can purchase the Green Room experience for a more private audience with the legends for $5,000.

Thanks for your support, Happy Holidays, and Go Lakers!

-S. Thompson aka Gatinho