from the desk of the publisher

A Montrose Weekend

Robin Goldsworthy is the publisher of the Crescenta  Valley Weekly. She can be  reached at  or (818) 248-2740.
Robin Goldsworthy is the publisher of the Crescenta
Valley Weekly. She can be
reached at
or (818) 248-2740.

Turkey soup – the remnants of Thursday’s Thanksgiving meal – is in the fridge.

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I did, spending every minute of Thanksgiving cooking, eating and enjoying the day with family. Unlike the scores of folks around the nation, I did not (nor do I ever plan to) rush to the stores after dinner to get the best deals on Christmas gifts. Call me foolish, but I chose instead to postpone the madness and just enjoy the day.

But I ended up not having to endure the craziness of Black Friday at all but instead indulged in the joy of White Friday, hosted by the Montrose Shopping Park.

White Friday for the merchants achieves the same goals as Black Friday – putting the books into the “black” (rather than the red) – but the White Friday attitude is the antithesis of Black Friday. Whereas Black Friday shopping is noted for its over-the-top crowds that are typically surly and grumpy, White Friday shoppers are much more peaceful and content to stroll rather than shove.

What I saw were the sidewalks of the 2200 through the 2400 blocks of Honolulu Avenue busy with holiday shoppers, taking their time, checking out the store windows and stopping into those shops that caught their interest.

After I popped into Merle Norman Cosmetics (which had “whited out” the sales tax), I checked my parking meter to make sure it was well fed. Then I too made my way along Honolulu.

Like many, too often I’m in a rush to get what I came for, then hurry onto another errand. But not this past weekend.

I went by Victori-Ana’s whose window was beautifully dressed. Stepping into Victori-Ana’s there is one word that immediately comes to mind: genteel. Lace tablecloths, finely milled soaps, decorative items are all on display. I was warmly greeted, but then left to my own wanderings.

Continuing down Honolulu, I overheard a couple of ladies talking outside Tom’s Toys. They were looking at the windows full of goodies.

“Wow, an old fashioned toy store,” one of them said. “We need to support this kind of store.”

Down the street, I stopped by Lara’s Gifts that was literally bursting with merchandise. Every time I go to Lara’s the sales lady is friendly and always seems to have a smile on her lips. This past weekend was no different as she told me how busy they were.

After skirting the diners outside Black Cow, Star Café and Zeke’s (the warm temperatures were perfect for dining al fresco), I made my way to Once Upon A Time.

The store was packed. People of all ages were checking out books, eReaders and all the other interesting items for sale. It was obvious that owner Maureen Palacios was busy behind the counter, but she always took time to greet her customers. Santa even came by with candy canes.

It was getting late, so I had to quickly make my way to my car.

But my day in Montrose wasn’t over. At 7 p.m. I was back for the tree and town lighting. With the kids from the CVHS Prom Plus Club, I plugged in the lights that lit up the town at the same time the giant tree on Honolulu and Oceanview was illuminated. It was so pretty. I also watched the kids (and some adults) play in the 20 tons of snow that had been brought in.

The day ended with dinner at Pepe’s.

I’ll be back – you can count on it. Steve and I want to see the horse-drawn carriage and listen to the live bands playing along Honolulu.

And of course I can be found this Saturday along Honolulu Avenue in the CV Weekly “float” (I use the term loosely) for the parade. I hope to see you there, waving at the CVW crew.

Stop by our office window in the 2700 block of Honolulu at La Crescenta for some hot apple cider and cookies before.