Save the 76 Ball - los angeles en Turn Those 76 Balls On! <p>Earlier today, Nathan and I were interviewed for a new automotive-themed television series called <em>Black Top</em>, with the 76 Ball on Glendale Boulevard in Atwater Village as the backdrop. The number 76 was not quite in the shot, and Nathan suggested he might go ask the station manager to set the ball spinning. Much to our shock and delight, the manager agreed, and by throwing just one switch gave the sign a much needed jolt of kinetic energy. We reckon that one of the other switches in the panel would have illuminated the ball, though this would not have been visible in bright sunlight. <p> And it was this inspiring experience that inspired us to ask you, oh lovers of the 76 Ball, to take a moment whenever you pass a 76 station which still flies its proud orange and blue colors and ask the manager to please make the ball spin. If it's dark out, ask that they light it, too. Heck, you can even offer to buy some gas in exchange! There aren't many 76 Balls left on their poles, and we fervently believe that every one of them should enjoy however many days, weeks, months or years it has left by spinning and glowing, just like Ray Pedersen designed it to do. <p> Together we can turn those 76 Balls on. Save the 76 Ball -- it's not too late!</p> 76 ball atwater village black top los angeles Thu, 18 Jan 2007 16:34:10 -0800 kim 109 at Beverly Boulevard 76 Ball in Peril <p>An urgent message from 76 Ball pal J. Eric Freedner should have all Angelenos fuming, as one of our most charming mid-city 76 Balls stands poised to be ripped from its pole and destroyed, perhaps this weekend! Nathan and I will be driving around town giving a Crime Bus tour all weekend... will some of you kind readers take it upon yourselves to guard and protect this sphere from harm? </p> <p>"The 76 ball at Beverly Boulevard / St. Andrews Place in L.A. has yellow tape around it and signs of excavating around the base of the pole. I HAVE EVERY REASON TO BELIEVE THAT THIS SIGN WILL COME DOWN, PERHAPS THIS WEEKEND, TO BE REPLACED BY A NEW HUBCAP 76 SIGN.</p> <p>St. Andrews Place is 2 blocks west of Western Avenue, on Beverly there is Schaeffer Ambulance and the 76 station is on the south side of the street one block further on."</p> 76 ball beverly boulevard los angeles st. andrews Fri, 20 Oct 2006 20:22:43 -0700 kim 100 at Death of the Sawtelle Sphere <p>76 Ball fan Marcello Vavala reported earlier this week that there were signs that the station at Santa Monica and Sawtelle might be about to lose its ball. Sure enough, the ball was cut from its pole the next morning, and dragged away to be destroyed.</p> <p>Sean McKinley snapped this photo with his phone:<br /> <a href="" title="Photo Sharing"><img src="" width="400" height="300" alt="Death of the 76 Ball, Sawtelle and Santa Monica Blvd., LA, August 2006" /></a></p> <p>And Marcello shares some observations, to help spot 76 Balls that face immediate danger. Unfortunately, we were not able to organize a protest to try to save this particular ball, but next time we might. PLEASE, if you see a 76 Ball that fits Marcello's description, drop us a line via our contact form ASAP.</p> <p>Marcello reports: The new signage is up and the orange ball has been taken away. The replacement happened very fast, probably within 5 hours.</p> <p>There are some observations I've made which may be helpful in the future (if they haven't been made already.)</p> <p>1. The ball removal was the last phase of the remodel. If I remember correctly, the station itself received its red color scheme about a full month before the ball was removed. So perhaps that can be a signal for balls that will be removed soon--orange balls at red stations.</p> <p>2. In this case, there was some site preparation. The area surrounding the pole was taped off--it was apparant that work was going to take place there. But just one day in advance.</p> <p>3. The actual ball removal happened early in the morning. The pole was down at 8:30am so the work may have begun at 7am, maybe even 6am.</p> <p>Hope this helps.</p> <p>Marcello</p> los angeles santa monica sawtelle signage Fri, 18 Aug 2006 11:56:37 -0700 kim 94 at Tomorrow: Kim and Nathan on Indie 103.1 with Joe Escalante <p>On Wednesday, July 19, around 8:40 am Los Angeles time, please tune in to Indie 103.1-FM or stream the station online <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>. Save the 76 Ball founders Kim and Nathan will be in the studio with Joe Escalante to discuss the campaign and ask for the public's help in getting the word out and saving Ray's balls.</p> indie 103.1 interview joe escalante kim cooper los angeles nathan marsak radio Tue, 18 Jul 2006 13:13:42 -0700 kim 87 at Michael Linder Gives The Ball The Eye <p>Acclaimed KNX reporter Michael Linder has a nice feature on the Save the 76 Ball campaign in his weekend blog. <a href="" target="_blank">Click over</a> to enjoy a very clever montage of images, or just read on. Thanks, Michael! </p> <p><strong>Pinhead to the rescue of giant 76 balls!</strong> You know &mdash; those orange and blue globes being uprooted from gas stations across the Southland while Los Angeles culture aficionados howl.</p> <p>The branding switcheroo is fallout from <a target="_blank" href="">ConocoPhillips</a> purchase of Union 76. Flat signage in ConocoPhillips red is replacing the big orange balls which were designed by Ray Pederson for the 1962 Seattle World&rsquo;s Fair. The spheres have taken on urban treasure status among cultural preservationists who regard them as historic Jet Age flashbacks &mdash; like the Jetsonesque <a target="-blank" href="">theme restaurant</a> at LAX which also made its debut in &lsquo;62.</p> <p>&nbsp;This week, cartoonist <a target="_blank" href="">Bill Griffith</a> announced his <a target="_blank" href="">&ldquo;Zippy the Pinhead&rdquo;</a> comic strip is taking up the cause. Griffith&rsquo;s passion for classic signs is legendary. We recently caught Zippy in print, chatting with the <a target="_blank" href="">Felix Chevrolet sign</a> at Jefferson and Figueroa. And, he&rsquo;s got clout. Seen in over 200 newspapers, Zip&rsquo;s strip is credited with saving the Bay Area&rsquo;s <a target="_blank" href="">Doggie Diner</a> weiner dog signs from destruction.</p> <p><strong>Dogged determination by Kim Cooper and Nathan Marsak</strong> is fueling the campaign. The duo publish <a target="_blank" href="">The 1947 Project</a>, one of our all-time fave explorations into Los Angeles&rsquo; colorful past. (Our KNX news story streams <a target="_blank" href="">here</a>.) More than 2,300 signatures from motorists threatening to boycott have been gathered at their <a target="_blank" href="">Save the 76 Ball</a> site. &ldquo;If that ball goes, so does this customer!&rdquo; </p> <p>ConocoPhillips hasn&rsquo;t backed down despite a steady stream of media attention to the cause c&eacute;l&egrave;bre. Even the BBC is onto <a target="_blank" href="">gas station castration</a>. Actor Michael Madsen (&ldquo;Reservoir Dogs,&rdquo; &ldquo;Kill Bill&rdquo;) told the Beeb, &ldquo;There seems to be this driving force to tear down everything that&rsquo;s a little old. These are things that were landmarks, a symbol that I remember from childhood.&rdquo; Madsen says he tried to buy a ball but was told they are destined to be crushed. &ldquo;What&rsquo;s the point of smashing them and putting up flat signs?&rdquo; </p> <p>Indeed! Not to mention the way some of the balls magically morph into Halloween jack-o-lanterns every October. Three dollar gas, now this.</p> 76 ball knx los angeles michael linder Michael Madsen radio zippy the pinhead Sun, 18 Jun 2006 12:15:23 -0700 kim 81 at The Hermon Ball Comes Down <p>Reporter Darleene Powells, who filed a swell piece on our <a href="" target="_self">1947project</a> Crime Bus tour earlier this year, <a href="" target="_blank">was witness</a> to this sad scene as she drove to the Y this morning:</p> <p><img width="500" height="351" border="0" src="" /></p> <p>Yes, that is the wonderful spinning ball at Monterey and Avenue 60 in the tiny NE Los Angeles township of Hermon, the same ball featured on the KTLA Morning News' feature on the Save the 76 Ball campaign.</p> <p>Darleene notes: <em>I'd read about this a couple of times on Franklin Avenue (<a href="">here</a>, <a href="">here</a> and <a href="">here</a>) and later noted to myself, a little smugly, that the 76 station near my house still featured its meatball. I have to admit I was hoping that this 76 station, tucked into an area of Los Angeles doesn't feel like Los Angeles, would escape notice, but alas. There goes the ball, sitting sadly on its 6.</em> </p> <p>It's ironic, as we enter the Easter season, to see this icon of modern design pulled down from its pole... perhaps not such a huge leap to the image of the dead Christ taken down from the cross? Like Christ, we hope our beloved 76 Balls will be resurrected, as ConocoPhillips crunches the numbers and sees that since consumers do have a choice, many of them are no longer shopping where the 76 Ball doesn't fly. </p> <p>Save the 76 Ball! It's not too late!&nbsp;</p> california darleene powells hermon highland park los angeles save the 76 ball Thu, 13 Apr 2006 20:57:59 -0700 kim 65 at Save the 76 Ball on KFI LA and WLW Cincinnati today <p>Nathan and I were just interviewed by <a href="" target="_blank">Gary Burbank</a> of 50,000 watt monster station <a href="" target="_blank">WLW</a> Cincinnati about the campaign to Save the 76 Ball. (Too bad Canada made 'em pot down from half a million watts back in the '30s!) </p> <p>Gary wondered aloud if we'd been hired by ConocoPhillips to generate controversy after which they could step in and say, &quot;Hey, we didn't know how much you loved our balls. Of course we'll keep them!&quot; Nathan and I think that would be really neat, and are wondering why the ConocoPhillips payments have yet to arrive in our Swiss bank accounts.</p> <p> If you're near LA today, or like to listen to radio online, tune <a href="" target="_blank">KFI-AM 640</a> in at the top of the 4, 5 and 6 o'clock hours (we're not sure exactly which!) and you'll hear more from Nathan and myself about what you can do to help Save the 76 Ball, and what the big sunny orbs mean to Southern Californians, and the world. </p> kfi radio los angeles Thu, 09 Mar 2006 14:05:55 -0800 kim 51 at Nathan Marsak says "Save the 76 Ball!" <p> Nathan Marsak, author of the book &ldquo;Los Angeles Neon&rdquo; and co-author of the Save The 76 Ball Petition, delivers an impassioned <a href="">podcast</a> plea that the remaining 76 Balls be kept safe from harm.</p> <p>stay in touch! subscribe to the <a href="">channel</a>. </p> design history los angeles nathan marsak neon podcast preservation ray pedersen signage Wed, 15 Feb 2006 16:19:53 -0800 rss 42 at