The Gold Line serves at least four visit-worthy educational sites from the Memorial Park Gold Line station alone. The city of roses is part of the San Gabriel Valley, but it deserves its own page.
Some East L.A. groups may find it easier to journey here aboard the 260/361; the ride from Atlantic and Whittier to Fair Oaks and Colorado is about forty minutes. Likewise, Hollywood groups may opt for a ride on the 180/181 or 780 lines, which serves the Hollywood/Vine, Hollywood/Western and Sunset/Vermont Red Line stations en route to Pasadena.
- Norton Simon Museum
- The Norton Simon isn't exactly an easy walk from the Gold Line's Memorial Park stop, but it's certainly do-able; allow about twenty minutes. The late Norton Simon parlayed a business fortune into one of the largest art collections ever amassed by an individual. His tastes ranged from Degas to 17th century Romanelli tapestry cartoons to Asian religious sculpture. You'll see it all here, and audio guides help make the collection accessible to children.
- Pacific Asia Museum
- Exit the Memorial Park station, turn east on Holly and you'll pass directly through the grounds of Pasadena's spectacular City Hall en route to this jewel-like museum, which specializes in the arts of Asia and the Pacific islands. The museum lives inside a Chinese Imperial Palace courtyard-style building -- complete with upturned roof to ward off pesky evil spirits -- and includes a Chinese courtyard garden. Don't miss the museum's regularly scheduled Saturday afternoon Family Festival days. (And while you're walking there, keep an eye peeled for the huge Jackie Robinson sculpture at Holly and Garfield.)
- Pasadena Museum of History
- If you had a Bill Gates-sized fortune here a hundred years ago, the Fenyes mansion on Pasadena's old Millionaire's Row is where you might expect to do your socializing. Today the mansion is part of the Pasadena Museum of History. They offer regular tours of the eighteen room Beaux Arts mansion; sign up for one and you can step back to a forgotten era of tailcoats, lace doilies and corsets. Like the Norton Simon, this attraction is a twenty minute hike from the Memorial Park station.
- Gamble House
- The Fenyes mansion's next door neighbor on Millionaire's Row, the Gamble House was built as a retirement residence in 1908 for a scion of the Gamble clan. (Gamble as in Procter and Gamble.) This is a great visiting spot for architecture buffs, and a less likely destination for small children. But it's hollering distance from the Fenyes mansion; if you're taking in one, why not swing by the other and see for yourself?
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