Tom Iovino from Tom’s Workbench started this thing called Get Woodworking week, which is a nice initiative to get people to do more (or get started in) woodworking.
I live in Los Angeles and when I got started a few years ago, I had no idea where to learn and didn’t have a place to do woodworking, in fact I still don’t have my own shop. But do not fret!, it seems there is an over abundance of places in the area, If you are looking for a place to get started, I hope you find this information helpful.
First let me mention the ones I am familiar with:
- Cerritos College, cerritos college has 2 options, weekday classes are part of their furniture and/or cabinet making program, they have very qualified instructors, huge shop and a great program. If you can attend classes during the week, this is the place to go. Their other option is via the Community Education program, which is offered during the weekends, these classes are non-credit. I have taken classes from both programs, and you can usually find me there on Sundays.
- William Ng’s Woodworking School (and club), Mr Ng has his own school, I have not taken any of his classes, but I am a member of his club, the club is a 2000+ sq feet shop with a nice compliment of machines, the club offers great flexibility in terms of work hours, (you can only go to Cerritos during your class hours). This paid club is located in Santa Ana, CA
- Scott’s Community Woodshop in eagle rock, the space is not huge, but he has what it seems like a full compliment of brand new Laguna Tools (and a Saw Stop table saw), and a few workbenches. This is also a paid club.
- Woodcraft in Santa Ana, friendly staff, nice selection of tools, and they offer short classes too.
- Rockler Pasadena and Rockler Orange, I am not sure if they offer classes, I know they do demos, go check them out!
Now the places I know about, but have never visited:
- Palomar College, close to San Diego,they have furniture making program as well as several classes related to instrument making.
- Fullerton College, in Fullerton CA, I don’t know much about this place other than it has a woodworking program.
- American School of French Marquetry, this is located in San Diego, and I believe the person that runs this school has been involved in the translation of Mr Andre Roubo’s tomes soon to be published by Lost Art Press, not a place to learn woodworking really, this is a very specialized school, but something to keep in your radar nonetheless.
If you live in LA; I hope this posts helps you to Get Woodworking!