by City Manager Ken Striplin
One thing that makes our community so special is that our City councilmembers have made it a priority to retain the Western charm and heritage our City is known for, while blending in the modern amenities which contribute to the high quality of life our residents enjoy. This is most evident in the recent revitalization of Old Town Newhall. Taking a stroll down Main Street is like taking a trip back in time. It is easy to imagine the smooth asphalt is a dusty roadway where horse drawn carriages rolled through and cowboys sauntered by. Nowadays, you can listen to the echo of your footsteps on the wooden planks lining the street as you mosey along taking in the famous names that grace the Walk of Western Stars, while appreciating the historic sites and iconic film locations that make the area feel like a journey back in time.
This historic location is not only a celebration of days gone by, but it is also a bright spot for the future. Thanks to our City Council, the revitalization of Old Town Newhall has transformed the area into the City’s premier Arts and Entertainment District. It is an eclectic shopping, dining and entertainment destination that mixes rustic charm with cosmopolitan appeal.
There are several new businesses that just opened or will be opening in the next few months. So if you are looking for a hot spot for dinner, a gourmet cup of coffee or a great craft beer – come see what is new! And soon it will be easier than ever to shop or dine in the area as a new parking structure is in the works. Once completed next year, the parking structure will offer a total of 372 parking spots, plus a roof top area that will be available for special events! Sure to be the perfect location to take in the sunset and enjoy the best view of Main Street—this area will be ideal for corporate events and celebrations.
One of the mainstays on Main Street has a new name and a new look. The MAIN, which stands for Municipal Arts in Newhall, is the venue formerly known as the Repertory East Playhouse. Now under City management, The MAIN is the spot for music, comedy, film, theatre, visual art, meetings, classes and workshops, and serves as a welcome center for visitors to Old Town Newhall. It is also host to events as part of the free monthly Thursdays@Newhall series, with the 1st Thursday continuing the 10 by 10 variety night, the 2nd Thursday hosting the Note by Note singer/songwriter night, the 3rd Thursday hosting art receptions and other visual art events in conjunction with the SENSES events that take place outside the venue, and the 4th Thursday hosting the ARTree Artist Speaker Series, which was previously hosted at the Old Town Newhall Library.
In the coming months, construction will begin on the Laemmle Theatre and Newhall Crossings. Laemmle Theatre will be a seven screen art house cinema with 2,300 square feet of retail/restaurant space and an outdoor event space. Newhall Crossings includes 47 residential units, over 20,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space, a public plaza area and subterranean residential parking. These two private projects are on schedule to be completed and open to the public in early 2019.
Whether you are looking for a new eatery for date night, wanting to experience the work of our creative community, are shopping for that perfect gift or are looking to explore the history of our valley, Old Town Newhall has something for everyone. I’ll see you on Main Street.