Community braves wet weather to take part in historic road run

In continued celebration of Culver City’s Centennial, 3, 450 guests participated in the Screenland 5K last Sunday.

“City residents joined guests from nine states and Canada to participate in the Screenland 5K on a rain-swept morning with skies clearing and a rainbow showing,” Mike Cohen, Mr. Culver City, said. “We saw all smiles along the course and the finish line.”

Undeterred by the threat of rain, city residents and guests showed up in throngs, highlighting the city’s strong sense of community.

With live music, a presentation of colors by Boy Scout Troop 50, notable speakers including Grand Marshall Laszlo Tabori– former middle and long-distance runner most renowned for matching the 1,500 meter world record in the 1956 Summer Olympics– city officials and guests donned movie-themed costumes, Captain Rhett Butler and Scarlet O’Hara greeted guests and many a sneakered-foot hit the ground running.

“This is another great opportunity to bring people together,” Mayor Jim B. Clarke said. “It’s also an opportunity to bring people from outside Culver City to come and see everything that’s here and discover Culver City.”

And discover the city they did, as they traversed 3 miles of downtown Culver, utilizing portions of Culver and Washington boulevards.

Guests were even given the once-in-a-century experience of running, walking or jogging straight through Culver and Sony Studios.

“It brings the community together, but being on the lots and seeing where Gone With the Wind was filmed…and getting to run through the studios–that was a big thing,” Sharon Burack, catcher for Culver City’s Senior Soft Ball League, said.

Replete with milestones denoting 100 points of Culver City lore, which included public art sites, locations where many a famous film was shot, as well as general historical tidbits of information concerning the area, many participants were stopped dead in their tracks, soaking in the scenes of the sound stages or taking selfies under the famous rainbow.

“It’s good to take a little time to recognize the rich history of this whole area,” Jerry Caldwell, Santa Monica resident, said. “It is pretty amazing.”

Finishing in first place, coming in at 16 minutes and 13 seconds, Terence Galasco was the Screenland 5K champion: “Going into the studios and passing by the entertainment and attractions made the run a breeze,” Galasco said.

Harley Richards came in second at 16 minutes and 45 seconds, and Stevie Steinberg finished third, at 16 minutes and 52 seconds.

A community effort, the event was sponsored by the City of Culver City, Culver City Downtown Business Association and the Culver City Centennial Celebration Committee, among several others.

“[Cohen] had a whole bunch of us get together, and I went to a meeting and said, ‘this sounds really good…and I like to volunteer’,” Carmela Raack, volunteer and Culver City Rotary Club member, said. “In such a big city like Los Angeles, to have so many people feel so attached and want to do good for their community is really important.”

Part of a series of events centered on celebrating the city’s 100th birthday, residents may expect even more events and are invited to participate and offer input into planning.

“We’re doing a year-long celebration, so this is sort of smack-dab in the middle of it,” Clarke said. “We’re very excited because we want to keep people interested in celebrating our centennial the whole year long.”

To better amass community participation, Paul Jacobs, president of the Centennial Celebration Committee, says: “we’re going to be doing an outreach to home-owners, letting them know that there are ways that they can participate in the Centennial.”

Jacobs also agrees that the sense of community is heightened by events such as these.

“You can tell by the smiles and laughter that people are here to just have some fun,” he said. “Our community is already pretty tight, but this is just another way of us enjoying each other and having fun.”

Former School Board president and general lover of Culver City, Laura Chardiet accredits much of the event’s success to Cohen.

“This is a wonderful event for Culver City and we really appreciate all the work [Cohen] put into this. He’s really the visionary for this event,” she said.

Residents and interested persons may obtain more information about the city’s upcoming birthday festivities by visiting

“I hope every one of the 3, 450 guests had an extraordinary experience,” Cohen said. “the Screenland 5K committee is grateful for the support of the City of Culver and community organizations and businesses.”