This is the time of year when special events seem to come fast and furious — especially in our neighborhood, which kicks the festive feeling into high gear at Halloween and keeps it at full throttle through New Year’s. This issue is a tribute to the creative decorations, community gatherings and good cheer that mark this season in Toluca Lake. As we look back at last month’s spooky scenes and look forward to Thanksgiving and all the winter holidays to come, one thing is clear: Toluca Lake knows how to have a good time.
That’s one of the things our cover couple, Becky and Nigel Lythgoe, love most about living here. In our exclusive interview, they reveal what drew them to the neighborhood, what they’ve learned in their first year as residents and how they celebrate this joyful season through their family theatrical tradition. We’re also bringing you our second annual holiday gift guide, packed with ideas to help you spread the spirit of Toluca Lake to everyone on your list. This is just a sampling of the wonderful wares our community has to offer, and I hope it’ll inspire you to support the neighborhood by shopping locally, not only this season but throughout the year. (And if you’re still in need of a present for that loved one who has everything except a Toluca Lake address, may I suggest a gift subscription to this magazine?)
As a follow-up to our last issue’s historical theme, we sat down with Eric Lamond to talk about his grandfather Larry Fine, who was one of the original Three Stooges. He shares the inside scoop on the Stooges’ local connections, what it was like to grow up with them and why their anarchic brand of comedy endures. In addition, we’re featuring a Toluca Lake resident’s heartwarming narrative about what happened after her landlady — a longtime local with a fascinating backstory of her own — passed away and left behind 17 cats in need of homes. The way her neighbors banded together to save the pets perfectly illustrates the power of our community, as well as the affection for animals that’s a hallmark of our neighborhood. (Speaking of which, we’re pleased to showcase our very first avian Pet of Toluca in this issue, as a reminder that our feathered friends need love, too!)
Your support is the greatest gift we can ask for this season, and I urge you to subscribe, advertise (and please support our advertisers), purchase an announcement to celebrate a life event, follow us on social media, send in your feedback and ideas, and spread the word about this magazine as we continue to highlight everything that makes our community so remarkable. We look forward to seeing you at this year’s Toluca Lake Holiday Open House on December 7 — be sure to stop by and say hello!
From all of us here at Toluca Lake Magazine, warm wishes for a merry and bright holiday season and a very happy new year.