Compiled by Messenger Mountain News Staff with Assistance from Jim Crawford
Anyone who knew “The Old Center,” by the Topanga Creek Market with its drab quonset hut businesses whose entrepreneurs often hid behind their doors to avoid the rougher side of Topanga, would be amazed at the transformation into what tenants have now dubbed the Canyon Courtyard. Bright facades, greenery, lights, and beautiful offices now open their doors to an array of essential local services, concerts, classes, and a selection of handcrafted, distinctive, shopping opportunities featuring art, apparel, crafts, herbs, teas, flowers, and Rocco’s Italian restaurant. Every shop and service is uniquely rooted in canyon culture and the Courtyard has become a place people like to visit and even stay for a while.
SHOPS, GALLERIES, CONCERTS, AND CLASSES
Be Love Apparel
During its 12 years of business, Be Love has created spirit-inspired clothing for women, men, youth, and babies, manufactured here in Los Angeles. Think your favorite and softest t-shirt, tank-top, hoodie, pullover raglan, sweatshirt, and leggings. Be Love is dedicated to service. They partner with non-profit organizations to raise money and awareness for great causes. A current example of this social enterprise is the Be Love “We Are Family” campaign, where Be Love has donated more than $13,000 to support the reunification of families separated at the border. “We continue to work in collaboration with nonprofits that are making a powerful difference in people’s lives and in our community, founders Kyle and KamGi Finch say. “We built Be Love to serve, inspire, activate, and empower and are more committed than ever to create beauty, support transformative causes, and be a force for positive change.” beloveapparel.com; (310) 593-4157.
Corazόn Performing Arts Center—A potent pulse of musical eclecticism that fosters creative expression through supporting the work of Master dancers, musicians, poets, artists, and those immersed in social and restorative justice, the healing arts, and hand-picked offerings, showcases works of Master Artists through one-of-a-kind curated concerts and experiential offerings. Save the Date: On December 19, the Aegea Ensemble, featuring Dimitris “Jimmy” Mahlis and musicians from Greece, Jordan, and Armenia, will perform world music from 9-11:30 p.m. Beverages included with $20 suggested donation. The Corazon space also offers workshop and event experiences. “We are seed holders for social uplift; fire tenders, holding space for ignited hearts and minds; bridge builders for humanity wishing for communion amongst all people. We are community.” (310) 795-1373; corazontopanga.com.
Irony Gallery—This traditional art gallery with a big-city, warehouse-district vibe hosts solo and group shows featuring all art mediums including sculpture, paintings, mixed media, multimedia and video projection, jewelry, photography, and performance art. The gallery was founded in August 2017 by Jill Hari and Glenn Fischer, professional metalsmiths, each with more than 30 years’ experience in their fields. Jill specializes in non-ferrous metals and jewelry and operates an art conservation studio adjacent to the gallery. Glenn is a structural welder and sculptor who designs and fabricates custom steel architecture and monumental sculpture at his steel shop. As a prospective 501(c) 3 nonprofit, we will be adding an eclectic educational program in 2019, including art classes, artist talks, and seminars. IronyGallery.com is under construction, but information is available at Instagram @ironygallery, and Facebook.com/IronyGallery.
Red Dragon Pottery—Jim Crawford’s Red Dragon Pottery studio is located on the back patio of Topanga Art Tile, where he teaches private classes, including Mommy & Me, and turns out bowls, vases, and other vessels. Ceramic drums are a specialty.“As my potter’s wheel gently spins, I have witnessed the resurrection of the Old Topanga Canyon Courtyard where new flowers have transformed the Courtyard into a Garden and little stores sprout new wings from real people’s hopes and dreams. Good Vibes.” Surfdaddy52@hotmail.com; (818) 917-5714
The Sassafras Shoppe
The latest addition to the center is steeped in Topanga history, taking its name from the internationally known Sassafras Nursery, owned and run by Pamela Ingram from 1984 until she died in 2000. From what was once the 131 Club dressed all in black, owners Pami Ozaki and her partner Ronny, have transformed the space into a bedazzling garden room filled with flowers, plants, gifts and light, in tribute to Ingram’s memory. (310) 455-1947.
Topanga Art Tile—Local artisans Paul and Matt Doolin of Topanga Art Tile have been in the Canyon Courtyard for 20 years. They have produced and installed tile murals throughout the world and in some of the finest houses, as well as restaurants, hotels, and public spaces. Large or small, their unique tiles are all handmade and hand-painted, bringing a spark of color to every occasion. Individual tiles featuring tropical fish, surf culture, flower and leaf motifs and geometric designs make ideal gifts. Let Topanga Art Tile brighten your holidays. firstname.lastname@example.org; (310) 455-3359.
Topanga Mercantile: Essentials For Canyon Living—From our humble beginnings as a candle company, we have grown into what has become an, “experience” for those coming through our shop. Our Zen Den has world class crystals, peace, and calm. Our Mercantile has extraordinary gifts. The Candle Bar! Oh what fun! In our Friday and Sunday candle-making classes, learn to blend and pour your own candle. Topangacandles.com; (310) 455-2876.
Wild Love Apothecary—This multi-service shop provides highest-quality organic bulk herbs, teas, tinctures, tonics, natural beauty products, oils, tools, and handcrafted products, as well as monthly workshops, wellness services, education, and special events with an emphasis on cultivating a community for people and plants to connect.“Combining modern alchemy, ancient plant wisdom, and regenerative practices, Wild Love Apothecary lovingly stirs together the highest quality, sustainably sourced, ethically crafted, organic and biodynamic plants and products with holistic practitioners and services, to support your body, mind and soul.” (310) 883-4285. email@example.com.
Animal Clinic of Topanga—Veterinarian Holly Scoren has been at the same location since 1993, long before its recent transformation into the Canyon Courtyard. This is Topanga’s comprehensive, personalized, go-to clinic for small animal medicine, preventive care, health certificates for international travel, non-anesthesia dental cleaning, and discounted vaccine and microchip clinics. Hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Closed Sunday. animalclinictopanga.com; (310) 455-1330.
Design Integration Group (DIG)/Malibu Solar—DIG and its associated business, Malibu Solar, are General Contractors specializing in green construction, historic renovations, alternative energy system integration, and comprehensive planning, design, and permit processing services. Established in 1999, husband and wife team Kevin Parkhurst and Topanga nativeHannah Wear, developed DIG while working as Chief Associates at Eric Lloyd Wright & Associates, Architecture & Planning. They are also Directors of Wright Way Organic Resource Center in Malibu. DIG’s mission is to foster and cultivate collaborative relationships and engage in projects that work to integrate concerns for social and environmental issues. Kevin and Hannah also operate Greener Empowerment Foundation, a 501 c (3) non-profit group with a focus on social and environmental programs to inform the mind, inspire the spirit, and encourage positive movement towards greater social awareness and environmental responsibility. For more information: digservices.com; malibusolar.com; (310) 455-0995.
The Vanity Room—Complete hair services for the entire family range from the man who is ready to see why a salon is better than a barbershop, to the wife who needs a quiet break from the kids, the gay couple who just moved from Venice and expects style in the canyon, to the kids who don’t deserve to walk around with a bad haircut. Extensions, earth friendly color and cuts are availa blefor everyone en suite.The Vanity Room’s owner and stylist, Tracy Burns, describes the salon as her sanctuary in L.A. (310) 801-0793; www.vanityroomcuts.com.
Maureen Ambs, MFT (mfc 46216) Licensed Psychotherapist
In my private practice I see individuals, couples, and children. In addition to my clinical training, I earned an MA from USM in Spiritual Psychology. In the therapy process, I assist clients with accessing, and aligning with their authentic selves, the place where our creativity, our heartfelt desires, and our intuition live and breathe. Often this place may be hidden for years by limiting beliefs, addictions, or having experienced a challenging or abusive family life. Together, we gracefully pull back and explore these layers and embark on a beautiful discovery that is You. Maureenambs.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; (310) 382-4022; located upstairs at 115 S. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Suite G.
Alexandra DeCleene, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Alexandra DeCleene is a licensed marriage and family therapist located in Ste K. She has 15 years experience treating diverse populations, including individuals, couples and families. She is currently taking new clients. 424-234-0128. email@example.com.