SELA Arts Festival at the L.A. River

A Project to Revive Southeast L.A. by the River Draws a Line Between Development and Gentrification

SOURCE: Ruth GuerreroRuth Guerrero - L.A. Taco

It’s a scorching hot, dry summer day in South Gate and the Los Angeles River is roaring with the kind of exuberant music-making perhaps not seen since the Tongva built life along the L.A. basin. More than 5,000 people are in attendance at the “first annual” SELA Art Festival to witness the likes of Buyepongo, Quetzal, The Altons, Culture Clash, and Weapons of Mass Creation.

People from all over Los Angeles endured traffic on the 710 to witness the collection of Chicano performers, browse the vendors displaying skincare products sourced from mercados in Mexico, Instagram clothing brands with embroidered phrases like “sin miedo” and “chingona,” shop for bilingual children’s books about Selena and Cantinflas, and of course, eat tamales, tacos, and tortas.

On this July day, the river, once a source of fertile sustenance, is the setting of a mini revival of cultural and literal nourishment for Southeast Los Angeles. But can life along the paved arroyo endure?

The state’s most powerful legislator is really hoping so.

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The "SELA Arts Festival at The L.A. River" is a special event that highlights the arts and activities that make this region great! The L.A. River in the Southeast is underutilized, and festival organizers hope to recognize this unique area as a growing Arts District in California, and welcome everyone from the surrounding neighborhoods to come together to celebrate culture and community.

“I’ve advocated for restoring the L.A. River...for the river to become the vibrant space so many of us imagine.”

— Assemblymember Anthony Rendon

SELA Arts Festival at the L.A. River

Come celebrate the arts and culture of the Southeast with local artists, L.A. River stakeholders, and our community! Participants include Molcajete Dominguero, SELA artists and vendors, L.A. River organizations and local food trucks. There will also be plenty of family-friendly activities, theater, dance, music and more!

Saturday, July 21
5 p.m. - 10 p.m.

In the L.A. River channel
5400 Monroe Ave.
South Gate, CA 90280
**No alcohol, no smoking and no glass allowed!

Bike, walk or drive to the site.
Parking available at Hollydale Park.