Strange Bedfellows: Plummer Park Activists Endorse John Duran for Supervisor

Stephanie Harker, left, and Cathy Blaivas, right, flank WeHo Councilmember John Duran in front of Plummer Park's Great Hall / Long Hall
Stephanie Harker, left, and Cathy Blaivas, right, flank WeHo Councilmember John Duran in front of Plummer Park’s Great Hall / Long Hall

imagePolitics can make for strange bedfellows. Consider the endorsement of John Duran in tomorrow’s election for the 3rd District seat on the L.A. County Board of Supervisors by two of the most outspoken opponents of city plans to redevelop Plummer Park.

Stephanie Harker sent an email to members of the Protect Plummer Park group Sunday asking them to vote for Duran.

“As you know Councilmember Duran originally supported the Plummer Park Master Plan, which included the destruction of 56 old growth trees and the demolition of Great Hall/Long Hall,” their message said.

“Things change though — and sometimes they change for the better. It was John who called off the wrecking ball at the eleventh hour and by doing so, helped save the historic Halls. He then nominated Cathy Blaivas for the East Side Working Group and recently he joined us in a walk-through of the park to discuss options and alternatives for open space. Most importantly he is now willing to re-engage the community and work on compromises for a new plan for Plummer Park.”

Harker said that Duran also said he would support the West Hollywood Preservation Alliance’s request that the city authorize its use of the Great Hall courtyard for a fundraiser.

At a City Council meeting on Jan. 20, Duran asked that the city consider the possibility of moving Great Hall / Long Hall, a WPA-structure on the National Register of Historic Places, rather than tearing it down, as is called for in the Plummer Park redevelopment plan.

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Riley
Riley
6 years ago

@Manny, welcome to politics. Just consider what both sides had to gain or lose. The Park activists have 56 trees and a historic building to lose. What would you do?

Manny
Manny
6 years ago

I don’t know who I’m more disappointed with, Duran or the “Plummer Park Activists”.

Larry Block
6 years ago

Cathy and Stephanie, Cathanie!, ..Sathy.. :).. fought for what they believed in with all their hearts and souls.. One cannot overlook a first day, walk in the park, form an organization, find members!.. talk up a storm, put effort and effort, day after day, night and day, day and night, .. they walked miles and miles, (I once passed out flyers with Cathy she can sprint to a mailbox, and stop and talk for an hour0… the patience of a saint with a laptop in hand trying to speak Russian.. and to laugh out loud.. one time with me she… Read more »

Rudolf Martin
Rudolf Martin
6 years ago

“It was John who called off the wrecking ball at the eleventh hour….”?????? No, as Shawn points out, it was the lawsuit by Protect Plummer Park that called off the wrecking ball at 11:59. John Duran had introduced the wrecking ball in a seeming fit of anger and then merely found an elegant way out of the political dead end alley he had maneuvered himself into. It’s hard to run for higher office when you just put your own backyard in disarray. Heilman/Land, not seeking higher office, were ready to let the chips fall where they may. I do not… Read more »

Virginia Gillick
Virginia Gillick
6 years ago

Oh for goodness sake. I just do not know where to start. I will start with Riley…I am with you 100%. Todd, yep a major game changer is coming and it will be an opportunity for all of us to get more involved with our City. Shawn, it is a complicated issue about the park and I do not think that Protect Plummer Park got more than about $500 of the nearly $10,000 retainer that the attorney charged. I am going to bet that “Cathanie” (I did not think that up, credit Laura B.) paid the rest of it out… Read more »

Allegra
6 years ago

I have so much respect and admiration for Cathy & Stephanie.
Their group is called Protect Plummer Park. John Duran is doing that.
Whatever reasons John Duran had, to change his vote, he did it.
Great Hall/Long Hall will live on into the future because of that.
Plummer Park will be enhanced and beautiful.
Duran also stepped in, changed his vote and saved Tara.

I support John…& Cathy and Stephanie. Bravo!

Robina Suwol
Robina Suwol
6 years ago

When we work together, great things can, and do happen! Congratulations to Stephanie Harker , Cathy Blavis, John Duran and everyone who supported their efforts to save this beautiful and historic site.

Riley
Riley
6 years ago

@Alison, If the Park is saved, maybe you will forgive them. How would you handle the politics of it? What would you do to stop the destruction? I know Cathy and Stephanie personally and I am here to tell you, they have given blood, sweat, tears, time and money to Protect Plummer Park. Too bad it has to come to this. Asking people to vote is hardly shilling for Duran. I do not see in this article where it says they are speaking for you.

Alison
Alison
6 years ago
Reply to  Riley

@Riley, I know they have. I have been in email contact with them over the email they sent out Sunday asking Protect Plummer Park members to “consider voting” for Duran tomorrow. He asked them to send out that email. He is using them and they know it. He was the one that wanted to demo Long Hall/Great Hall. This “turnaround” is all politics. If he wins tomorrow, he will be gone and we will be left with Heilman/Land who still want it gone and whatever Duran says now is mute. THIS IS ALL A POLITICAL GAME.

Alison
Alison
6 years ago

He came to them for an endorsement a while ago.
They gave them their personal endorsement but said they couldn’t speak for Protect Plummer Park members. Now they are shilling for him. I have lost all respect for them. He is saying whatever he thinks will get him votes. I just emailed Kathy and told her to take my name off the rolls of Protect Plummer Park because I have lost all respect for her and Stephanie.

Shawn Thompson
6 years ago

To me I think the core truth that seems to being lost around the future of great hall / long hall is that the only reason it had needed to be DEMO’s was to put a parking lot under neath it. It had no structural concerns with its state of physical condition. And now that many on council have said they don’t support that idea anymore, The demo to me seems to be being framed as its own project? Not to mention its place on the National Register of Historic Places. Great Hall / Long Hall was being used by… Read more »

Todd Bianco
6 years ago

Let’s see: Supervisor Duran, Assessor Prang and John Heilman, Abbe Land and John D’Amico all up for re-election next year (assuming they all run). 2015 could be a major game-changer for WeHo.

Riley
Riley
6 years ago

Wow! The historic park might actually be saved???? That’s great! Good for John Duran on coming through for his constituents and good for the Protect Plummer Park people because without them all the old trees would be gone and the historic buildings would be gone.