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Downtown's Piñata District Will Remain A Local Secret For Now

It doesn't have FIDM students scurrying around, like the Fashion District, or the Flower District's Westside bridezillas, but Downtown's Piñata District, or Piñata Alley, near Central and Olympic, is at least as lively and entertaining. The half-mile area encompassing two dozen piñata stores has blossomed in the past few decades, even if it lacks any neighborhood designation in the way of signage or branding. What started out as a place to buy cheap produce changed when party supply stores cropped up in the '90s, catering to the growing hunger for papier-mâché figures to pummel with sticks. The growing patronage attracted food vendors, pony rentals, and Warner Bros. party poopers, who, in 2005, sued shops and sellers building piñatas resembling their characters (everyone eventually settled). An effort a few years back to get neighborhood recognition for the tiny area—which would help the district get on tourist maps—fizzled out thanks to the daunting task of obtaining hundreds of signatures and the close proximity of the Fashion and Produce districts.

· Piñata district in L.A. produces hit after hit [LA Times]