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Having grown up in the Westside, I was very hesitant to initially move to Sunland. I have lived her for almost 2 years now and have really grown to love my new hometown. It reminds me of where I grew up on the Westside when it wasn't crowded and over run with yuppies. It had more of a small town vibe in the midst of LA...I never thought I would find something like it until I moved here. There is a wide variety of people that live here, but a lot of people I have come across and befriended are highly educated artists, writers, poets, etc. It is a highly creative environment. Of course the beauty of our surroundings is another draw to the area.
In regards to a comment made regarding the South Side of Sunland being more family friendly. That is the silliest comment ever made about Sunland. There are quiet a few apartments in "South" Sunland. The apartments on the "North" are limited to not even a full street and Foothill Blvd (which technically is "center" Sunland) LOL! So I am not quite sure which part of the city is being referred to but I have found my area to be extremely family oriented and friendly.
Beautiful mountains, close to trails and Angeles Forest and rural properties as well as the 210 freeway. Little shopping and less parking. Foothill Corridor a mess. Too much residential density for small lanes. Vehicles EVERYWHERE!
Im going to straight up and try my best not to be biased. Sunland is a Small town in a big city, it even has a hidden feeling even though it is not. The people of sunland on most part are great hard working people. i lived there for a good part of my life, being 31. i was born there, graduated from Our Lady of Lourdes in tujunga, which is an outstading school. Private schools are far superior to public schools in this area. When i was 15 i moved to santa clarita which is a different world. lived there for 12 yrs and then moved back sunland, and it still feels the same. Yes there seems to be a homeless community but they have never bothered me or caused me any distress.
and there is a handful of teens doing stupid teen stuff like checking car doors in a parking lot trying to find there next next come up, but they really arent violent kids. If feel safe in sunland, people arent afraid to jog or walk or even visit sunland park. But there is alot of sirens for some reason and the police helicopter always finds time to make a couple of passes everyday at very random times. I say my biggest complaint is the small streets were you are will have to wait for someone to move there doubled parked auto blocking the street once a day everyday. Oh, and the southern side of foothill, closer to the mountain that the 210 fwy follows, is more of a family feeling community.
north of foothill has more apt complexes and stuff.
As the sixth Poet Laureate of Sunland Tujunga, I wrote a poem in praise of my home where I've lived since 1997. Here it is, for your enjoyment!
What I Love in Sunland
© 2010 by Maja Trochimczyk
The strong arms of the mountains
embracing, protecting our town
Lights scattered in the night valley
during my drive to the safety of home
How clouds sit on the hilltops
squishing them with their fat bottoms
The river playing hide-and-go-seek under the bridge
to nowhere: “now you see me – now you don’t”
Towering white glory of yucca flowers in June –
we are Lilliputians in giants’ country
The mockingbird’s melodies floating above
red-roofed houses sleeping on sunny streets
Armenian fruit tarts sweeter than fresh grapefruit
and pomegranate from my trees
Hot, shimmering air, scented with sage and jasmine,
carved by the hummingbird’s wings
The rainbow of roses, always blooming
in my secret garden
We residents of Sunland love the natural surroundings visible from every vantage, like the chapparal covered San Gabriel mtns to the North and northeast, and our very steep Verdugo Mountain hillsides to the South, and the Big Tujunga River Wash that dumps into the Hansen Dam lake on our North and west boundary. Sunland is known for fresh air and a healing atmosphere just above the smog of the valley, and as such became home to several TB sanatoriums 100 years ago. The Little Landers self sufficent lifestyle homesteads were early Sunland residents, and Tujunga's Bolton Hall is a landmark stone museum housing much of their artifacts and records. The McGroarty Arts and cultural center is still offering popular classes like violin, piano, ceramics, dance and more in a beautiful setting left to us by the first california poet laureate and longtime legislator from here of the same name. Mr McGroarty loved the natural beauty and inspired many contemporary townsfolk to walk in the green verdugo hills each day after work where issues of local import were drawn out for their attention or possibly the concerted efforts of these neighbors who called themselves, and came to be known as, "The Millioniares Club of Happiness and Contentment". Altho clearly rich in many ways such as nature all around to soothe spirits seemingly free from the oppressive city just over the hills, and rewarding civic involvment with clear citizen appreciation, not one of them had even close to a milion dollars, in fact they were most dirt poor money wise!
I feel that Sunland is a great home town city. It's like being in a small Midwestern town that is close to LA. There are some downsides. It is the neighbor to Tujunga, CA which is known as Tweaker Capitol of the US. There are many homeless in the parks where children play. The local government seems to do nothing about this problem. A lot of the teenagers in the area take drugs. Especially Acid and Marijuana. It's an epidemic in our town. There are too many, nail shops, auto repair shops, coffee shops, etc. We need a Target. Kmart packed up years ago and there is a big empty store ever since. The city was able to get rid of Home Depot for fear of day laborers camping out in front of them and environmental reasons. However, we still have day laborers in the city on Foothill Blvd. The schools aren't great either. The only school that is decent is Apperson Elementary but once you get to middle school or high school, if you are not self motivated or if you are a kid that needs help. You will fall through the cracks. Don't get me wrong I like living in Sunland, I only wish the city had more resources to clean up the homeless and tweakers and to bring some mainstream stores and restaurants to our area. As for me I hope to move soon because I have a 3 year old and am hoping to move to LaCrescenta where it is clean, no homeless, no apparent tweakers, and most important excellent schools. Ciao
I think what makes Sunland great is it's a regular neighborhood with nice, friendly people. I live on a street full of homeowning families with kids who talk to each other and help each other out. I think there's a real sense of community. Another thing I've noticed here is there are a lot of families who've lived here for generations, and it gives the area a nice sense of continuity. There's also a lot of local pride and support for local organizations (churches, schools etc) I think the hidden treasure of Sunland is that it's far prettier than people think. I love waking up and seeing the morning sun on the mountains to the north; it's just lovely. The only downside I can think of is that I wish we could revitalize the Foothill Blvd commercial strip a bit more. A few more sit down restaurants, a general retailer or two -- those would be great. We've got enough fast food and vacant store fronts. I also wish there was better public transport running east to Pasadena, and south into Burbank. The two main buslines run downtown, but I spend more time traveling to closer urban cores, and hence have never used the bus.
I really like living here, and I'm glad my family made the choice to do so!
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