Rudy Ortega, the President of the local Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians “held a ceremony” and gifted the newly elected Mayor Karen Bass with a turquoise blanket on Wed., Dec. 21 to mark the winter solstice, also known as the “shortest day and longest night of the year. It signifies the official beginning of winter. A prayer circle was held that included a blessing with Chumash elders – the descendants of the original habitats of the land.

The ceremony was held at the Chatsworth Nature Preserve, located at the northwest corner of the San Fernando Valley. The open space preserve is the only one of its kind in the city of Los Angeles and is recognized for having 200 species of birds, various species of reptiles and mammals, and an ecological pond. It is only open to the public for special occasions.

Photos Courtesy of LADWP