Guide to the Original Farmers Market and The Grove
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The Original Farmers Market
6333 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90036
Hours: Monday – Friday 9:00 am to 9:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am to 8:00 pm, Sunday 10:00 am to 7:00 pm. (Keep in mind that many merchants and restaurants keep different hours and are in fact open much earlier. Call businesses individually if you have any questions).
A Bit of History: The Farmers Market isn’t just a popular eating and shopping destination. It’s also an important historical location. It was established in 1934 and since then has grown and expanded to become a world-famous destination.
The land it sits on has been owned by the Gilmore Family since the late 1800s and remains owned and operated by the sixth-generation of the Gilmore Family. Originally the land was used as a dairy farm and oil was discovered here. The land was also used as a stadium for car races and other entertainment purposes. The first tenants arrived in 1934 and sold their products from the backs of their trucks. After that, permanent stalls were created, and over time, the Farmers Market as we know it now came to be.
What To Eat: The Farmers Market may be the perfect place for picky eaters because the choices are endless. Families can opt to eat together in a sit-down restaurant such as Du-Par’s, Buca di Beppo, and Marmalade Cafe. But if every family member seems to enjoy eating something different, than opt to eat from one of the Market’s many smaller eateries. Everyone orders what they want from where they want, and then like a mall’s food court, everyone eats together at the same time. Smaller eateries are quite diverse and include such popular spots as Deano’s Gourmet Pizza, Loteria Grill, Magee’s Kitchen (the original Market restaurant), Pampas Grill, Phil’s Deli and Grill, The French Crepe Company, and The Gumbo Pot to name just a few.
What To Do: Walk, shop, and people-watch. Take the kids into Kip’s Toyland, a family owned and operated toy store that doesn’t carry anything electronic. Stop in at Sticker Planet where you’ll find thousands of stickers before you. Browse and be tempted by handmade confections at Littlejohn’s English Toffee House, enjoy a donut from Bob’s Donuts, or enjoy some sweets from Dylan’s Candy Bar. You can shop for fresh fruits and vegetables, baked items, and meats and seafood.
Be sure to check out some of the nods to history, including a timeline of the Market, artifacts on display, and vintage memorabilia.
Special Seasonal Events: The Farmers Market hosts a number of special events throughout the year. They recently wrapped up their Friday Night Music series (usually from late May through early September). They also host a yearly Mardi Gras celebration, St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, and the annual Gilmore Heritage Auto Show.
Upcoming events include their annual Fall Festival (happening on Saturday, October 14th and Sunday, October 15th), their Hanukkah Celebration (Sunday, December 17th beginning at 2:30 pm), and their Christmas Festivities (December 17th through the 23rd).
Parking: Parking is available in two parking lots. 90 minutes free parking is offered with a free validation with purchase from a Farmers Market merchant.
189 The Grove Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90036
Hours: General hours are Sunday-Thursday 10:00 am to 9:00 pm; Friday and Saturday 10:00 am to 10:00 pm. However, many restaurants and shops keep different hours. Call businesses individually if you have any questions.
A Bit of History: The Grove has become an extremely popular destination, for both locals and tourists. It opened in 2002 and since then has become much more than a shopping destination. It serves as a community gathering-place and recreates a “main street,” where visitors feel at ease and perhaps even transported back in time.
What To Eat: Families will find many dining options including well-known restaurants such as The Cheesecake Factory, Wood Ranch BBQ and Grill, and Maggiano’s Little Italy. If you’re looking for snacks and/or sweet treats, you’ll find Sprinkles Cupcakes, Häagen-Dazs, See’s Candies, and Wetzel’s Pretzels.
What To Do: The Grove is home to a multiple of retailers including a three-level Barnes and Noble (with a large children’s section), a three-level Nike, and a two-level Apple store. You’ll also find the popular American Girl Place, Gap, Janie and Jack, Nordstrom, Pottery Barn Kids, and Pacific Theatres.
In addition, you’ll want to try to plan your visit so your family can enjoy a free ride on the Trolley. The double-decker Trolley (part of a 1950s Boston street car) travels between The Grove and the Original Farmers Market.
Children will also be enthralled by the Dancing Fountain. Each hour, the Fountain puts on a show and “dances” to songs by Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, and more.
Families will also appreciate knowing about the Family Room, a special room near the restrooms complete with changing stations, nursing rooms, and a play area for small children.
Special Seasonal Events: The Grove hosts a weekly Kids Club on Thursdays from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm (from February through October). This free event features live musical performances, storytelling, puppet shows, and more.
The Grove is also quite well-known for its yearly 100 foot tall Christmas Tree adorned with 25,000 lights and ornaments. Each November, The Grove produces a spectacular, free tree-lighting ceremony to commemorate the holiday season (complete with celebrity appearances, live performances, and fireworks). Kids can visit with Santa at Santa’s House, enjoy visits from Frosty the Snowman, and enjoy magical “snowfall” twice a night.
Each summer, the Grove is home to a free Summer Concert Series. The Grove also hosts fashion shows, outdoor movie screenings, and many more family-friendly events throughout the year.
Parking: The Grove has a large, multi-story parking structure. One hour free parking is offered. Some restaurants and retailers provide free validation with purchase, giving visitors two hours free parking.
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