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Go Metro on Spring Break and Teach Your Children Well

Monday March 19, 2007

It’s spring break and the kids are ready for fun. Help them enjoy a vacation that is a learning experience while exploring Los Angeles in an economical and eco-conscious way.

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A $3 day pass can take older students and adults all over town. Children under 5 can travel free – two to each fare-paying adult.

When riding one of Metro’s buses, tell the kids they are traveling on the largest clean-air fleet in North America. Metro buses run on air-friendly natural gas, rather than diesel. Tell them they are contributing to the quality of the air we breathe by taking the bus, rather than the car.

Teach the kids about history, science, art and even cars at LA’s diverse museums. Three lines – Metro’s Red and Gold lines and Metro Rapid Line 720 – offer access to museums in downtown Los Angeles and along Wilshire Boulevard.

Travel downtown via Metro Rail and see if you can spot the cool new security cameras in every station that are so finely tuned, they can read the grades on a report card. Get off the Metro Red Line at Civic Center Station or the Metro Gold Line at Union Station and visit the Children’s Museum, the Japanese American National Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art or the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. All are within a 10-minute walk of the stations. (And don’t forget that the Metro Gold Line starts in Pasadena, which is home to the world-famous Norton Simon Museum and the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens.)

Or hop on Metro Rapid Line 720 for a bus ride down Wilshire Boulevard. Explain to the children that the world-famous Metro Rapids travel 25 percent faster than other buses because someone right here in Los Angeles invented the technology to make it happen. While you are traveling, look down at the street and see the loop antennas that send signals to make the lights stay green so the buses can pass through.

Check out the Page Museum and La Brea Tar Pits (5801 Wilshire Boulevard), the adjacent Los Angeles County Museum of Art and its Boone Children’s Gallery, one block west, or the Peterson Automotive Museum (6060 Wilshire). That same Metro Rapid Line 720 will take you to the Hammer Museum and its pretty paintings (10899 Wilshire) in Westwood.

Sure, there are plenty of other learning experiences in Los Angeles. Perfect for vacationing kids, the J. Paul Getty Museum (Metro Rapid Line 761) has programs just for children, the California Science Center at Exposition Boulevard and Figueroa (Metro Line 381) likewise, has special programs for kids and even an IMAX theater. The nearby Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is home to all sorts for dinosaur bones, which, of course, are fuel for all imaginations under 10.

Maybe on the way home you can stop at the Los Angeles Central Public Library (Metro Red Line Pershing Square Station) or at any of the other 60 plus branch locations and pick up a book to learn something more about the topic just explored.

For more travel information call 1-800-COMMUTE or go to www.metro.net. And this spring go Metro. It’s a learning experience. And maybe not just for the kids.


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