Community Spotlight — Our Inglewood Pardee Picks
Home to iconic spots such as The Forum, Randy’s Donuts, and a brand new NFL stadium, Inglewood is a South Los Angeles City to watch. The neighborhood is rife with history and oozing with things to eat, see, and do. The best part: It’s only going to keep getting better and better. Here are some highlights of the best things to see and do in Inglewood, plus some fun facts to know about it.
Inglewood Community Highlights + Fun Facts
Opened in 1967, the “Fabulous” Forum is one of Inglewood’s most noteworthy sites. Back in its heyday, it was the spot for concerts and sporting events. The Los Angeles Lakers and Kings once called it home. Once the teams moved to the Staples Center, the venue was neglected for a few years before it was acquired by Madison Square Garden Company in 2012. It has since been completely restored to its former glory and once again serves as one of LA’s top entertainment hotspots.
The original Randy’s Donuts is by far one of Inglewood’s most beloved spots for locals and visitors alike. The flagship location has been around for almost 60 years. It’s impossible to drive by the famous 32-foot donut on West Manchester Boulevard and not crave one of their handmade donuts. The location has even made cameos in many television shows, music videos, and movies including “Iron Man 2.”
The Baseball Connection
If you have little ones who want to learn how to play baseball or you just want to brush up on your batting skills, head to The Baseball Connection. They have premium hitting cages, monthly memberships, training, and technology that helps track speed and agility. It’s open to all levels and they also offer yoga and core strengthening classes.
This raved-about Mexican restaurant has been around since 1987. Their specialty is—you guessed it—seafood but not just seafood. It has a Mexican flair to it. The restaurant imports its seafood from Sinaloa and Nayarit so it’s as authentic as it gets. There are ceviche and fish on the menu as well as a variety of tasty shrimp dishes. It’s a great brunch option when you’re tired of the same old waffles and Eggs Benedict routine.
Inglewood is about to get a lot more popular. Los Angeles is getting a brand new NFL stadium which will be home to the Los Angeles Rams and Chargers. The stadium sits atop the former Hollywood Park Racetrack. It’s currently under construction and is slated to make its debut during summer 2020. There are also plans for new shops, restaurants, a hotel, parks, and even an artificial lake that will surround the stadium.
Hollywood Park Racetrack
The Hollywood Park Racetrack was the place to be when it opened in 1938. It was beautiful complete with artificial ponds and waterfalls. Celebrities like Mickey Rooney, Walt Disney, and Cary Grant were regulars during its glory days. Over time, horse racing lost its allure and the racetrack officially closed down in 2013.
Stars Were Born
Inglewood is also the birthplace of many stars we know and love including supermodel and television host Tyra Banks, pop sensation Becky G., “How to Get Away With Murder” star Billy Brown, rapper Omarian, Beach Boys co-founder Brian Wilson, and actress Vicki Lawrence.
Stuff I Eat
Health-conscious folks like to flock to Stuff I Eat. Open since 2008, the restaurant is all about organic, fresh, vegan food. The menu offers a variety of entrees including wild rice tacos, enchilada pies, and nut burgers. There’s even a transitional menu for those that are switching to a plant-based diet.
Designed by architects Simeon Charles Lee and Carl G. Moeller, Fox Theatre was a movie palace that exuded Hollywood glamour back in its day. It opened in 1949 and hosted many premieres over the years including “Mr. Belvedere Goes to College” starring Shirley Temple. It closed down in 1988 and is now on the National Register of Historic Places.
Edward Vincent Jr. Park
The 55-acre Edward Vincent Jr. Park is the largest park in Inglewood. Built in 1934, the park features trees, a pool, a community playhouse, and an outdoor amphitheater. It’s also home to the Veteran’s Memorial Building which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is also where Centinela Springs originated which enabled the town to become an agricultural area.
Inglewood Public Art
If you love art, consider taking a self-guided tour and explore the different public art pieces sprinkled throughout the neighborhood. Inglewood Stories by local artist Michael Massenburg, for example, is a colorful mural in the lobby of the Inglewood Public Library that pays homage to the city’s past and present. Visit inglewoodpublicart.org for the detailed self-guided tour map.
Centinela Valley Adobe
The Historical Society of Centinela Valley runs a few landmarks in Inglewood including the Centinela Valley Adobe which was built in 1834 as a ranch house and is said to be the oldest building in Inglewood. Visit to peruse photographs, books, and memorabilia that capture the history of the Centinela Valley. It’s open Sundays from 2 to 4pm.
The Serving Spoon
Serving the best breakfast in town since 1983, The Serving Spoon is a staple in Inglewood. Even famous faces like Magic Johnson and Shaquille O’Neal have enjoyed a meal here. The menu has all of the breakfast classics you’d expect (chicken and waffles, French toast, omelets) as well as other entrees like oxtails and meatloaf and gravy.
Although the city of Inglewood only stretches nine square miles, it is full of architectural landmarks. There’s the nine-story Inglewood City Hall which featured a state-of-the-art design when it was born in 1973. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The Forum’s unique circular design and 60-foot-tall arches were inspired by Roman coliseums. The retro, futuristic design called Googie is also seen throughout the city namely via the umbrella-shaped hamburger restaurant Brolly Hut.
Moreton Bay Figs
In 1875, Moreton Bay fig trees were shipped here from Australia and plated throughout LA including some right here in Inglewood. The city then passed the Tree Preservation Ordinance to protect the trees which are now some of the largest and oldest trees in the neighborhood.
Inglewood Civic Center
Located in the heart of the city, Inglewood’s sprawling Civic Center spans 29 acres. It encompasses City Hall, Grevillea Park, the Inglewood Public Library, Inglewood High School, the Inglewood War Memorial, and Cafetales Restaurant. You can spend an entire day just perusing the different sites and admiring the public art pieces showcased throughout.