This TLM issue’s cover story has been over two years in the making. It was early 2020 when we first met travel journalist Kellee Edwards and learned how thrilled she was to be a resident of the same neighborhood where one of her heroes, Amelia Earhart, once lived. Well, you know what happened next: Just as we were interviewing Kellee about her amazing adventures and planning an epic photoshoot to showcase her skills as a pilot and motorcyclist, the pandemic struck and much of the world shut down. We pivoted to a new feature detailing how local residents were weathering those challenging times, reluctantly putting Kellee’s story on hold until it seemed safe to embrace travel again. It remained on our minds throughout the difficulties of the following years until finally the time felt right.
It turns out the delay may have been a blessing in disguise. Kellee’s voice in the travel world has only grown more resonant over time, as she leads crucial conversations about representation and inclusion in the industry and keeps taking on bigger challenges. Plus, as someone whose thriving career is a testament to the power of overcoming your fears and pushing your limits, she’s the ideal guide for those of us emerging back into the world and attempting to forge another new normal. While not everyone may be ready to embark on a round-the-world voyage just yet, her sage advice applies whether you’re planning a road trip or contemplating an outing to a new place in the neighborhood: Have courage, stay curious and enjoy the spirit of adventure wherever you find it. “We really have to pay attention to who we are, our true feelings and how we go out into the world,” she reminds us. “Life is unpredictable and short, and it’s very important to make memories and to have experiences.”
I hope the story of Kellee’s explorations and achievements inspires you to try something new and memorable this summer. Besides the list of favorite nearby activities she shared, we’ve put together our own compendium of more than 40 fun ways to savor the season in and around the city, from food fests and outdoor films to concerts and sporting events. Meanwhile, because every adventurer needs a home base that’s just right for them, we’re bringing you our second annual real estate resource guide, where 10 local pros offer their expertise on the current market and tips for buyers and sellers. And, of course, this issue also features coverage of recent neighborhood events and profiles of some people who make our community special, including the dedicated volunteers of the North Hollywood Interfaith Food Pantry, who are working generously to address food insecurity among our neighbors.
We are excited to be producing a very special Toluca Lake 100th anniversary issue of TLM this fall. Our editors are working on stories of the families and events that shaped this remarkable community. I welcome all contributions of local historical lore and especially vintage photos for publication in this commemorative issue. In fact, if we use your photo, you’ll receive $50!
As always, thank you for your readership, and please remember to keep supporting our advertisers and the local business community. I wish you a summer of extraordinary experiences wherever your journey takes you.