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Dog Paddling – Laguna Beach Style

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©Paul Harper

Dennis’ Tidbits



August 12, 2014

Nanu. Nanu. Robin Williams was the guy

Maybe I’m a tough customer, but over the years there’s only been at most a handful of people that made me laugh so hard my side hurt and my whole body went into convulsions. Robin Williams was the guy. His serious side was as brilliant as his funny side. I first realized that when I saw Good Morning Vietnam. 

You’ll make God’s side hurt too, Robin. Nanu, nanu!

1-0, 2-0, 2-1, 1-0,3-1, 2-0. No, these aren’t soccer scores, which is boring enough, but way too frequent daily box scores in Major League Baseball this year. Boring! I do admire Clayton Kershaw, the Dodger ace who looks like a lock for his third Cy Young Award and he’s only 25. Best part though; he’s very humble, which is most important to me. Look what Barry Bonds has done, but I’m not impressed ‘cause I heard he’s a real ---hole.

Of course there were waves right after the U.S. Open at Huntington Pier as a nice 3-5 foot Southern Hemi pulse arrived the very next morning and stuck around most of last week. Trouble is, that event has no waiting period like our local Annual Brooks Street Classic. The eight day event at Huntington is always scheduled for the last week of July into the first part of August

Speaking of Brooks Street, we’re still waiting and it’s almost the middle of August. It’s all coulda, woulda, shoulda. We shoulda run it during the July Fourth weekend when it was 4-6 foot plus from a combo Baja swell and healthy Southern Hemi pulse with sunny, glassy conditions both days with 74 degree water. What were they thinking?

Getting back with the epic summer of 1997 when El Niños were still legal, we left off with new heavyweight champion hurricane of the Eastern Pacific, Category 5 Linda, who was responsible for Laguna’s highest truancy numbers of all time on Monday, September 15, 1997.

Linda’s waves raged on into the next day. By Wednesday, things were pretty much back to normal so noodle armed surfers decided to pay Laguna Beach High a visit. Then on Thursday, tropical storm Nora was born just SW of Acapulco. She began to trek to the northwest kind of hugging the coast of Mainland Mexico while intensifying rapidly. Two days later she was a high end Category 4, her center only 200 miles off the coast of Manzanillo. Nora continued to creep to the northwest at a slow 6 mph. and she reached Category 5 status the next day. Her sustained winds were 158 mph with gusts up to 168. Nora was the fourth storm of the 1997 season to attain Category 5 status. This was unprecedented. 

The next day she found herself only 175 miles SW of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico with a central pressure of 922 millibars. She was now in a position to strike the southern tip of Baja in 36-48 hours as a dangerous hurricane as her forward movement was still pretty much to the northwest. Two days later, a sigh of relief as Cabo avoided a direct hit as Nora veered a bit more to the WNW as her outer bands gave the tip some heavy showers and some gale force winds as she sat only 150 miles west of Pescadero, about 50 miles up Baja’s western coast. 

Now she was barely in our swell window as she crept back to a more NNW course. Two days later, consistent 10-12 bombs were marching in at a ridiculous SSE angle. On Thursday, September 25, she veered to the northeast and made landfall near Punta Eugenia, only 400 miles south of here. Her outer bands reached Southern California and dropped over an inch of rain in Laguna. The next day she was a remnant low over Southern Arizona but not before unloading 4-6 inches of rain in that region. Not only were Nora’s mammoth waves impressive we were also on the receiving end of a huge NW groundswell from a very strong low way out by the Dateline at Latitude 42 degrees north, so Malibu and Rincon were firing at the same time on Thursday, Sept. 25. It was raining, but the air was a sultry 85 with a dew point of 72 and water temps in the mid 70’s with not a breath of wind all day! 

What school!? 

See you on Friday, ALOHA!

Festival of Arts events for this weekend

Youth Arts Education Workshops

Dates/Times: Through August 29

Mondays – Fridays 11 a.m. & 1 p.m.

Cost: $10 material fee/session

Bring out that creative spark in your young artist at the Youth Arts Classes this summer at the Festival of Arts. Kids will enjoy art classes taught by professional Festival artists in mixed-media, jewelry making, collage and more. Meanwhile, parents will have free time to view the artwork on display throughout the Festival grounds. Festival artists will also share some of their creative techniques in a fun and friendly environment that will inspire your kids to come back every week! Open to children ages 5 - 12. Reservations required. For information and a detailed schedule, call (949) 464-4234 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Friday, August 8: Wood Sculpture (11am), Encaustic/Wax Painting (1pm)

Cost: $10 material fee/session


Nightly Music Schedule Daily 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Cost: Free with Festival admission

Friday, August 8: Cinnamon and Clove

Saturday, August 9: The Girls

Sunday, August 10: Magnolia Memoir


Jazz on the Green, Saturday August 9

Time: 1 – 3 p.m. Cost: Free with Festival admission 

The Festival of Arts will sizzle Saturday, August 9 when Jeff Lorber Fusion take the stage in the final Jazz on the Green concert of the summer. The Festival’s popular music series, showcases today’s most talented and recognizable jazz performers and the Jeff Lorber Fusion are no exception. Jazz on the Green Concerts are free with Festival of Arts Admission. Limited seating is available in a reserved section for $25 per person per concert (includes Festival admission). Call (800) 487-3378 for more information on reserved seating.

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Jeff Lorber Fusion performs for final Jazz on the Green


Art of Cooking Featuring Cathy Thomas, food critic/author/on-air host 

Sunday, August 10 Time: 1 – 2 p.m. Cost: Free with Festival admission


Learn to create delicious dishes with Cathy Thomas, award-winning columnist, author and on-air host at the Festival of Arts Sunday, August 10 from 1 - 2pm. As part of the 2014 Art of Cooking series, she will demonstrate step-by-step some of her favorite recipes, and she will share samples of her finished creations with the audience.

According to Cathy Thomas, part of the fun of cooking and entertaining is creating delectable dishes without spending hours in the kitchen. That’s been the focal point of her cooking classes and award-winning newspaper features for over two decades. Her quick-to-prepare recipes showcase flavorful ingredients, relying on fresh fruits and vegetables to make each dish colorful and delicious.

Sundays at the Festival of Arts features an eclectic mix of music, from Bluegrass and Chill to Jazz/World/Classical fusion. From 2 – 4pm, Sunday in the Park will provide the perfect atmosphere to browse the art gallery, picnic on the green, or simply relax in the beautiful weather of Laguna Beach.


Sunday in the Park  Live Performance by The Beatroots with Jason Feddy and Friends
(Beatles tribute band) 

Sunday, August 3 Time: 2 – 4 p.m. Cost: Free with Festival admission

Sundays at the Festival of Arts features a new musical series with an eclectic mix of music from Bluegrass and Chill to Jazz/World/Classical fusion. From 2 – 4pm, Sunday in the Park will provide the perfect atmosphere to browse the art gallery, picnic on the green, or simply relax in the beautiful weather of Laguna Beach.

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The Beatroots perform Beatles music for Sunday in the Park

The Beatroots are a different kind of “tribute” band. They don’t dress up, they don’t wear wigs. They play the songs of The Beatles in their own, inimitable style, staying close to the original, but improvising when the feeling takes them. This makes for a truly energetic and alive experience for both the musicians and the audience. Not a dreary copycat, but a real, organic living tribute. This band clearly loves every minute!

As one of the nation’s oldest and most highly acclaimed juried fine art shows, the Festival of Arts features the artwork of 140 award-winning artists. Patrons can enjoy the work of exhibiting artists, demonstrations and art workshops, daily art tours, live music, special events, dine at on-site restaurants and much more. For a full listing of events, visit

Through August 30, 2014

Open daily from 10 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.

Early closing: August 23 at 3:30

Ticket Information

General Admission: Weekdays $7, Weekends $10

Students & Seniors: Weekdays $4, Weekends $6

Free Admission for Children 12 and under, Military, and Laguna Beach Residents.

Festival of Arts Grounds 650 Laguna Canyon Road

(800) 487-3378

Laguna Concert Band to perform on Festival of Arts grounds on August 13 as it begins celebration to honor its 15th season

The Laguna Concert Band concludes its summer performances at the Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters with a special performance on Aug 13 at 5:30 p.m. entitled “Celebrate Laguna” as it enters into its fifteenth year making music in Laguna Beach. The band also celebrates the announcements of new leadership appointments to help guide the Concert Band into the future and solidify its relationships with community leaders and organizations in and around the Laguna Beach area. 

The Concert Band has been playing a wide variety of music from marches and classics to holiday music, Swing, Jazz, Big Band and Dixieland since its humble beginnings fifteen years ago. 

Over a cup of coffee at the Zinc Café, the Laguna Beach Concert Band was formed when flutist Theresa Marino, local conductor Dr. Bill Nicholls and Laguna Beach Arts Commission member and musician Carol Reynolds nurtured the idea until it blossomed into the local treasure that it is today. 

The 65 plus member band has been busy over the last year. Laguna’s own ‘Stray Cat’ Lee Rocker performed with the band for two sold out shows in February. They performed in Segerstrom Hall in a regional band festival and collaborated with the Laguna College of Art and Design’s 2nd Annual Summer Animation Master Class scoring and recording the sound track for the Short Animated Film “The Sock Thief” and debuted local composer, Pamela Madsen’s new work, “Inside The Heart of the Earth: Crystal Cove”, during the Crystal Cove State Park Grand Opening at Crystal Cove State Park…all in a matter of a few months!

The Band is now preparing for the August 13 performance at 5:30 p.m. at the Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters, which will be held in the main pavilion area. The program will feature local and celebratory music as it ‘Celebrates Laguna’, beginning of a year of celebration to honor the 15th season of the Laguna Concert Band. 

Submitted photo

(L-R): The leadership: Dr. Bill Nichols, Ed Peterson, Craig Gordon & Pete Fournier

The band also announces several new leadership changes. Craig Gordon, a trumpet player, has been appointed President, David Anderson, an ardent supporter and past featured singer with the band, as Chairman of the Board and longtime member and director Ed Peterson, Music Director, will be taking on additional duties to interface with a new Board of Directors.

Craig Gordon brings over 30 years successful professional experience in business start-up, marketing, public relations and various other management/leadership roles to the position. He currently serves as partner for two start-up ventures, Connect 4 Healthcare, LLC and AirFlowBalance, LLC. Originally, a native of Columbus, Ohio, Mr. Gordon stated, “I’m very excited to be able to practice, play and perform music with such an exuberant, talented and devoted group of people. I hope to translate my personal and past professional experience to serve, lead and promote a truly fantastic organization…I really want everyone in Laguna Beach and surrounding communities to recognize what they have been missing all these years!”

David Anderson is the newly elected Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Laguna Concert Band. Mr. Anderson is currently the Director of Audience Development for the Fine Arts and Media Technology Division at Saddleback College. He previously served as the Director of the Emeritus Institute for the college and spent over eleven years as the Director of Extended Education Department for Irvine Valley College. It was during his time at IVC that he became a champion for the band and helped support it during the formative years. With additional experience in City Government and Recreation with the City of Irvine and his work at KLON Radio Station, Dave brings a wealth of leadership experience with him. Dave shared his enthusiasm in his new appointment by saying, “The Laguna Concert Band is a local treasure to the community, and I am so excited to see this exceptional group continue to expand their role of bringing music to those of all ages. Laguna Beach has long been known as the City of the Arts, and the Laguna Concert Band is a vital component as a contributor to art of music.”

Ed Peterson, Music Director and longtime member and head of the Laguna Concert Band’s conducting staff of Dr. Bill Nichols and Pete Fournier will be taking on additional duties to interface with the new Board. Mr. Peterson, a respected trombone player, taught instrumental music in the Garden Grove school district for more than 20 years before entering the business world where he currently heads up HR Advisors Inc., a Human Resource Outsourcing and Recruitment company. Ed was enthusiastic about the changes saying, “I am very excited with the appointment of Dave Anderson as Chairman of the Board and Craig Gordon as Band President. Both Dave and Craig bring solid leadership backgrounds to the Laguna Concert Band. This is the beginning of our 15th anniversary season and the new board will have outstanding leadership to achieve our vision for this wonderful organization”.

The Laguna Concert Band’s Aug 13 performance at the Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters is free with paid admission to the festival.

Million Dollar Raffle Early Bird deadline is August 21

Purchase tickets now for the 10th annual Laguna Beach Gold Coast Million Dollar Home Raffle and beat the Thursday, August 21 Early Bird deadline. “The earlier you enter, the more chances you have to win,” stated Dan Stetson, President of the Ocean Institute. “Purchase tickets by Thursday, August 21 and qualify to win bonus prizes, in addition to the Grand Prize.” The Grand Prize winner gets to choose between a beautiful Laguna Beach home or $1 million in cash. Last year’s winner, Nicholas Elias, elected to take the grand prize of $1 million cash over the home.

Ocean Institute board member and Laguna resident Bill Steel draws 2013 winner 

The Laguna Beach Gold Coast Million Dollar Home Raffle is the most successful home raffle in California, awarding the advertised grand prize - a home or $1 million cash - every year from 2005-2013.  “We’re proud the raffle has awarded over $11 million in prizes since 2005,” commented Susan Goggin, whose agency GCA Santa Barbara/Laguna Beach developed the raffle.

Tickets are $150 and only 21,000 tickets will be sold.  In addition to the Grand Prize, there will be over 500 prizes awarded.

The deadline to enter the first Early Bird drawing is midnight Thursday, August 21.  Early Bird ticket buyers are provided additional chances to win extra prizes and cash while still qualifying for the Grand Prize drawing held November 8 at the Ocean Institute. 

Bonus multi-ticket drawings will also be held for those who purchase two or more tickets with additional prizes awarded, including Lexus luxury car leases, dream vacations, shopping sprees and lots of cash.  For those still looking to win a Lexus car lease but only buy one ticket, refer your friends and for every friend who buys a ticket, you and your friend are entered into the Refer Your Friends drawing where you both win - top prize is 2 Lexus IS250 leases or $7,000 cash each.

Celebrating 10 years, 10 new weekly drawings called the Gold Rush drawings have been added this year. Qualified ticket holders have a chance to win $1000 and $300 prizes each week. More winners, more fun! It’s our way of saying thank you to our supporters.

“The home raffle has produced thousands of happy winners, and raised important funds benefiting more than 100,000 school children that the Ocean Institute serves every year,” remarked Greg Goggin.   An annual community event, the Laguna Beach Gold Coast Million Dollar Home Raffle raises awareness and funds for the many important non-profits it serves.  At the same time it provides raffle ticket buyers a chance to win big while supporting a cause they believe in.  Do you feel lucky?

To purchase tickets and for information on the raffle, please call (949) 542-3600 or visit

“Laguna Beach Wave”

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Cheyne Walls

The above photo was captured using a “panoramic camera rig” at Aliso Beach. Cheyne Walls’ photography, including this photo, will be on display this weekend at Forest & Ocean Gallery downtown. We thank Cheyne for “loaning” us this one.

LBPD Citizen Academy – now accepting applications

The Laguna Beach Police Department is accepting applications for the Citizen Academy. The academy starts Thursday September 4, 2014 and will meet from 6 to 9:30 p.m. for twelve consecutive weeks (the thirteenth week is graduation). Applications will be accepted until August 28.

The Citizen Academy is a twelve-week non-stress course designed to provide community members with a better understanding of the Laguna Beach Police Department and to help foster better communications between police personnel and citizens.  The Academy will include instruction in the following areas: history of the Laguna Beach Police Department, investigations, traffic enforcement, accident investigation, driving under the influence investigation, gangs, narcotics, neighborhood watch, crime prevention, crime scene investigation, police K-9 program and volunteer programs. There will also be a tour of the police facility as well as vehicles and equipment used by the department. Academy members will be given the chance to shoot at the police firing range and participate in mock scenarios. There is also a tour of the Orange County Jail. 

To obtain an application and announcement for the Citizen Academy, contact the Laguna Beach Police Department at (949) 497-0701. For questions regarding this program, contact Class Assistant Ross Fallah at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Corporal Matt Meadow at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (949) 497-0758. For inquiries pertaining to this Press Release, contact Captain Darin Lenyi at (949) 497-0375 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Applications are mailed, faxed or emailed to you upon request.

Laguna Beach Business Club’s 2014 Speaker Series

The Laguna Beach Business Club is proud to announce Bart Zandbergen as speaker for August 21. The club holds a breakfast meeting the third Thursday each month and hosts speakers that discuss topics valuable to achieving success in your personal and professional lives. 

Bart A Zandbergen, CFP, will present his Half Time Report. This informational presentation will cover:

1) Does the market have enough steam to continue this growth?

2) Will geopolitical unrest in Europe and the Middle East affect the US Stock Market?

3) Will inflation rise and what does that mean for the market and the economy?

All this and more will be discussed at this informational meeting.

Club meetings begin with a buffet breakfast and brief networking roundtable. Meetings are hosted at the Hotel Laguna. Non-members are welcome. For more information about the club or to register to attend a meeting please contact a club member or Bart Zandbergen at 949-455-0300 x218, or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The LBBC is a group of local business professionals and entrepreneurs. We meet monthly to discuss current events, business opportunities and share insights within the context of our community and our lives. Our goal is to build and maintain relationships with local professionals and businesses that we are proud to recommend to our clients and friends. To attend a meeting or for more information, please visit

Golf Camps at Ben Brown’s & The Ranch at Laguna Beach

Junior Golf Camps
Junior Players (Half Day)
Cost : $399   Ages : 7-13

Only Two Weeks remain:

August 11 -1 4

August 18 - 21
Day: Monday – Thursday 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. (Lunch included every day)
Student to Professional Golf Instructor ratio is 6 to 1
with a Maximum of 12 students per week.

Students each day will work on various aspects of the game.

Day 1: Fundamentals of the game, putting, chipping, pitching, golf etiquette & safety
Day 2: Fundamentals of the game, full swing with irons, bunker play, terminology & rules
Day 3: Fundamentals of the game, full swing with metal woods, sportsmanship & playing golf for fun
Day 4: Introduction to playing the golf course, practice and interactive activitie

Upon successful completion of this camp each participant will receive a
certificate recognizing them as a golfer in good standing with Ben Brown’s
Golf Course and The Ranch at Laguna Beach, as well as a certified golfer!

Camp Benefits:
1. 16 Hours of Professional Instruction
2.  Fitness component each day
3.  Healthy lunch provided by Executive Chef Camron Woods
4.  Fun and games, making new friends and certificate of completion
5.  Golf Amenity pack given to each Junior who completes this camp

Register early, class sizes are limited. You may register no later than the
Thursday before the class is scheduled to begin. Phone 949-499-1919 to
sign up over the phone. For Questions about this Camp and Golf Instruction:
Nick Jankowski: Head Golf Professional : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Ryan Sheffer: First Assistant Golf Professional/Director of Instruction:
Timothy Jackson : Assistant Golf Professional / Golf Instructor


Evening Ladies Clinics

Great for the Beginner or Advanced Golfer
Days : Mondays & Thursdays – 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Week 3 : Monday August 11 & Thursday August 14 - Full Swing : Learn the full swing and how to improve your ball striking

Week 4 : Monday August 18 & Thursday August 21 - Bunker Play : Never fear the bunker again
Week 5 : Monday August 25 & Thursday August 28 - Driver : Learn how to gain more accuracy & distance
Week 6 : Monday September 8 & Thursday September 11 - 3 Hole Playing Lesson : Learn how to take your “Range Game” to the Course!

Cost: Pay as you go - $25 per session Invest in the Series - $20 per session ($120 Total Investment – Savings of $30)

Call to register or with questions 949.499.1919 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Gene Kelly: The Legacy, An Evening With Patricia Ward Kelly at The Laguna Playhouse late September

Gene Kelly: The Legacy, An Evening with Patricia Ward Kelly, is an intimate, behind-the-scenes portrait of legendary star of stage and film Gene Kelly. The Legacy will be presented for two nights at The Laguna Playhouse, Monday, September 29 at 7:30 p.m., and Tuesday, September 30 at 7:30 p.m., 606 Laguna Canyon Road. 

A world-renowned dancer, director and choreographer, Gene Kelly brought astonishing grace and athleticism to the big screen. In this unique, live performance, Patricia Ward Kelly, his wife and biographer, takes audiences behind the scenes with rare and familiar film clips, previously unreleased audio recordings, personal keepsakes, and stories Kelly shared with her over their decade together. She guides us on an unforgettable journey into the life and heart of the man who changed the look and style of dance on film and became one of the world’s most beloved and iconic stars. 

“I am very happy to be bringing Gene Kelly: The Legacy to The Laguna Playhouse,” says Patricia Kelly. “It is a perfect venue for this very personal show: an intimate space with a rich tradition and an enthusiastic theater community.”

Patricia Kelly met Gene Kelly in 1985 in Washington, D.C., where she was the writer for a television special about The Smithsonian for which he was the host and narrator. Soon after, he invited her to California to write his memoir. They fell in love, married, and were together until his death in 1996. Currently, she serves as sole trustee of The Gene Kelly Image Trust and as Creative Director of Gene Kelly: The Legacy, a corporation established to celebrate Kelly’s artistry worldwide. Mrs. Kelly lives in Los Angeles where she is completing the definitive book about her late husband. 

Gene Kelly: The Legacy currently on tour in the U.S. and abroad, premiered at sold-out evenings at The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and New York City’s Lincoln Center. More details about Gene Kelly: The Legacy can be found at and at “Gene Kelly: The Legacy” on Facebook.

Gene Kelly: The Legacy, An Evening with Patricia Ward Kelly will be at the Laguna Playhouse Monday, September 29 and Tuesday, September 30. Both shows are at 7:30 p.m. 

Reserved seating tickets are $45. For group sales, please contact Kathy Bonner at (949) 497-2787 Ext. 229 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The Box Office hours are Tuesday – Sunday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., or visit

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