Baker’s three dozen years celebrated Oct 13


Friday the 13th was a lucky day for Laguna.

Ron Reno celebrated 36 years as pastry baker, sandwich maker and collector of Bray pottery at Andree’s Patisserie in back of the Art Center on Oct 13.

The tiny shop tucked in the back of the Art Center is off the beaten track and can be overlooked by tourists, but local are Reno’s bread and butter. They often come to the shop via the alley between Pacific Coast Highway and Glenneyre Street. 

“We practically have beaten a path between our shop and Andree’s,” said Nanci Nielsen, a stylist at Thomas David Salon in the Hobbit Shops.

Andree’s seats five, on brightly cushioned stools next to an L-shaped counter along the window that parallels the walkway to the front door.    

The door was first opened for business by Andree Davis in 1962.  

Photo credit: LagunaBeachBest/Diane Armitage

Reno went to school to learn his craft that keeps customers coming back for more. After all these years, he knows what customers will order before they open their mouths. 

“Well, I’m in here every day,” said Melanie Gustaphson, who works at the nearby V Salon.

Andree’s is open Tuesday through Saturday, 7:45 a.m. until 3 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. Among the most popular items in the bakery cases are almond croissants and bear claws, not to mention muffins and cheese danishes, Reno also makes sandwiches every day. 

Specialties include seasonal cookies.

“Right now it’s Halloween cookies; next month it will be turkeys and then comes Christmas,” Reno said. 

But what would a pastry be without a hot drink? Reno offers coffee---some say the best in town, espresso, cappuccino, latte, and steamers. Steamers?  

“It’s just flavored warm milk,” said Reno. “Could put you right to sleep.”  

Reno is happy to talk about his pottery collection that lines the shelf in back of the counter. He is particularly proud of the rare display tile created to market Brayton Pottery, which was located on a five-acre lot between South Coast Highway and Glenneyre Street, since divided. 

The buildings now house a restaurant and art galleries, as well as Andree’s.

Barbara’s Column

Hurtful words can have dire consequences


Photos by Mary Hurlbut

“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” 


“You are fat, nobody likes you, you don’t belong here” can be as painful as a punch. 

A fist can cause tears and a bloody nose. Hurtful words can cause suicide, according Ability Awareness Project, a program that provides anti-bullying education. 

“Words matter,” said Councilman Steve Dicterow on Sunday.  

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150 white images represent those lost to youthful suicide

The councilman was surrounded by some 150 plastic figures, displayed by the anti-bullying organization from 8 a.m. to sunset on the Cobblestones at Main Beach. 

Each figure had a photograph and the story of a youthful suicide. The figures represented a fraction of the thousands of children who have found death preferable to bullying.

“If you are not being bullied, you are a target for it,” Dicterow said. “Targets can fight back and if a target can’t fight back, they can tell someone. Be your own hero.”

Dicterow told an interested crowd that he was wearing a bright orange shirt for a reason.

He said it was his banner against bullying and a challenge to bullies: “Bring it on.”

Both on Sunday and at Tuesday’s City Council meeting, Dicterow expressed gratitude that council members Rob Zur Schmiede and Bob Whalen showed up at Main Beach to support the effort to curb bullying, if not end it.

“It was quite moving,” said Zur Schmiede. “I wish the problem would go away.” 

However, he doubts t it will ever be eradicated.

Doesn’t mean we should stop trying. 

“Bullying will always happen,” said Dicterow. “We should always fight it.”

He would have like to have seen a Laguna Beach Unified School District representative show up for the event. 

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Shadi Pourkashef played Chopin’s Funeral march every hour on the hour

Shadi Pourkashef, founder of the Awareness Project, said she has been invited to speak at schools in the Capistrano School District, and to Anaheim and Santa Ana middle school students, but not in Laguna. 

“I am surprised at the lack of interest by the School Board,” said Pourkashef.

Pastor Jay Grant also spoke on Sunday. 

“There is no pain quite like the pain of being called names,” Grant said. “I was in tears as a child when teased about being a redhead.”

One Laguna Beach Girl (unnamed at the request of Pourkashef) was ready to shed more than tears. She confided that she had been suicidal.

“I had it planned,” she said. “I went upstairs and my dog came up with me. I looked at him and thought I don’t want to never see him again---so I ran downstairs and talked to my mom.” 

They talked and the girl got the help she needed. She is the heroine of her own story.  

“We owe it to our kids to address this grave issue,” said Laguna Beach resident Steve Baker

Pourkashef made her statement by playing Chopin’s Funeral March, every hour-on-the-hour on a grand piano, hauled onto the cobblestones.

Her priorities are working with schools, increasing public awareness of the ghastly consequences of ignoring bullying and promoting, an on-line educational platform. 

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The images of lost children were heartbraeaking

“Our goal is reach as many schools as we can,” said board member Pooneh Khazei.”We can change the environment and teach kids to understand kindness and see differences as an asset.”

Sunday was the second such event sponsored by the Awareness Project, according to Pourkashef. 

“We are just starting to make an impression in town,” she said.

Sandy Thornton, an old hand at arranging events, lent her expertise to help Pourkashef make more of an impression. 

Thornton was driving past Main Beach last year when she spotted the figures. 

“I thought, how the hell could there be an event I don’t know about,” said Thornton. 

So she parked her car and asked Pourkashef to go for coffee.

Thornton offered to ask Dicterow to speak at Sunday’s event.  

“He immediately put the date in his cell phone,” said Thornton.” I have never seen him so passionate.”

Local girl scouts (also unnamed) participated, bestowing red roses at the foot of figurines, honoring unsolicited cash donors.

Bullying is the third leading cause of death among children and teens. It has to stop.

But wait---There’s more. You will find advance notice of all the fun and interesting stuff for visitors or residents to do in Laguna by reading

Stu News welcomes Letters to the Editor with readers’ opinions on matters of interest to Lagunans. Share your thoughts on Barbara’s column today by sending a letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

The Annual Girls’ Night Out sold out and raised $160,000 for the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach

The 9th Annual Girls’ Night Out was a sold-out affair with more than 300 women attending on Sept 28. This year’s event was presented by Wilson Automotive Group, Montage Laguna Beach, Newport Lexus, Starfish, PIMCO, State Street and Winston’s Crown Jewelers who donated two jewel and diamond-loaded set of earrings and strand of pearls -- all worth over $13,000 for this year’s opportunity drawing. 

Chaired by Club Event Committee and Board Member, Celeste McCarthy, this Girls’ Night Out raised $160,000 in direct support of the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach’s Club Programs. 

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Michelle Fortezzo, Chief Development officer at BGCLB & daughter Sarah Benson, LBHS Teacher

As guests arrived at the event they were greeted by Winston’s Crown Jewelers’ models bedecked in their magnificent jewelry. During the event, the models posed in black cat suits and encouraged guests to try on the many exquisite pieces of jewelry. As the ladies made their way down the stairs they got to enjoy delectable cuisine from Starfish, Laguna Beach and participated in the silent auction. 

“This was another successful Girls’ Night Out in terms of enthusiasm and revenue,” said Pam Estes, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach. “We rely on the generosity of the community and our sponsors to help support the out-of-school programs that we provide for over 300 children and counting. Every dollar of support counts towards making a difference in the lives of a child.” 

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Pam Estes, CEO at BGCLB & Event Chair Celeste McCarthy

The Club would like to give gratitude to long-time Club supporter Holly Wilson for another year of opening the doors to her incredible home for the Club. Every day children rely on the nationally recognized, award winning and character-enhancing programs offered by the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach. 

At the Boys & Girls Club, socially sound experiences designed to keep children healthy, active, and “thinking” are all provided thanks to supportive efforts like this one. Anyone interested in sponsorship opportunities or more information about the Laguna Beach Boys & Girls Club should contact Michelle Ray-Fortezzo, Development Director, at (949)494-2535x7584 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

South Laguna Community Park hosts Fall Potluck Festival Oct 22 from 2 – 5 p.m.

South Laguna Community Garden Park is hosting its annual Fall Potluck Festival October 22 from 2-5 p.m.

This year will be special since the firefighters of Station 4 will be invited and recognized for their service to our community.

Activities will include face painting, pumpkin decorating, prizes, fun family games, and live music from the Garden Band.  

Submitted photo

Lots of fun awaits attendees of this year’s Festival

The public is invited. Attendees are asked to bring drinks and a dish or snack to share. Reusable dinnerware will be provided—and washed by Garden volunteers to reduce waste.

Donations to the Garden Park are welcome.  The Garden Park is located on Coast Highway at Eagle Rock Way.

For more information go to or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Run with a mission

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Women’s Health Magazine is sponsoring a nationwide “Run 10 Feed 10” event to help feed those in need in Laguna Beach. The 10k run (or walk) will take place on Sat, Oct 28 at 8 a.m. at Crystal Cove - meet at Los Trancos parking lot. Proceeds from the $35 registration fee will benefit the Laguna Food Pantry. Register or donate at

Prof Katherine Manthorne will speak on California Mexicana: Mission to Murals on Oct 15 at LAM

On Sun, Oct 15, at the Laguna Art Museum, Professor Katherine Manthorne, guest curator of California Mexicana: Mission to Murals, will give a presentation on the themes of the exhibition. 

Professor Manthorne, a specialist in modern art of the Americas, earned her Ph.D. from Columbia University. She was director of the Research Center at the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum, where she also served as executive editor of the journal American Art. 

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Ferdinand Deppe, San Gabriel Mission, oil on canvas, 27” x 37” – gift of Nancy Dustin Wall Moure

Earlier Prof Manthorne was professor and chairperson of art history at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her fellowships and awards include the Tyson Scholarship at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art; Terra Foundation Professor, Free University, Berlin; Baird Library Fellow, Smithsonian Institution; and Senior Fulbright Research Fellow, University of Venice. 

rofessor Manthorne curated California Mexicana: Missions to Murals, 1820-1930 (assisted by Professor Alberto Nulman, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México), and edited and contributed to the accompanying publication.

Advance tickets are recommended. Visit, or call 949.494.8971 x203. The Art Museum is located at 307 Cliff Drive.

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