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Doing a World of Good Locally

NELA bicycle enthusiasts gather for CicLAVia fundraiser in Atwater Village.

At a time when much journalism is tinged with pessimism, a few good media organizations consistently point to an optimistic future by illuminating the trends and ideas that are likely to unify people across social and cultural boundaries.

Among these messengers of good news is GOOD, the Los Angeles-based media platform that produces a quarterly magazine as well as videos and events for “people who give a damn,” as the company puts it. And on Saturday, this remarkable enterprise hosted an afternoon of food, drink, music and fun aimed at raising funds for CicLAvia, one of L.A.’s most innovative and active community organizations whose goal is to dramatically increase pedestrian and bicycle traffic in the nation’s second-largest city.

CicLAvia also hosts an annual bike ride, during which the center of the city is shut down and cyclists from Highland Park to San Pedro to Santa Monica to Sylmar are invited to make the trek downtown and experience Los Angeles on two wheels.

The goal of Saturday's fundraiser, in addition to hosting a smashing good party for community members, was to raise about $10,000 to put toward that downtown ride.

According to Linton, CicLAvia and GOOD magazine were about three-quarters of the way toward reaching that goal at 4 p.m.—around the time that the five-member Colombian band Very Be Careful regaled the crowds with its robust music.

 Held at Atwater Crossing, a community and events space in Atwater Village, the fundraiser attracted hundreds of people of all ages, many of whom arrived on bicycles, indicating that did appear to give a damn—about the environment. Besides a string of food trucks and free refreshments, not to mention free beer and wine, plus a free yoga class, the event offered a dodgeball game hosted by the Eagle Rock Yacht Club and a family bike ride to the Los Angeles River with local author Joe Linton, who writes the environmental blog L.A. Creek Freak.

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