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Public invited to workshop on proposed Laguna Canyon Channel Improvements

The City of Laguna Beach Department of Public Works invites the public to attend a workshop on Wednesday, Feb 13 at 10 a.m. to review the proposed Laguna Canyon Channel Improvements project scope. 

This project will rehabilitate the deteriorated Laguna Canyon Channel between Beach Street and Main Beach to improve storm water flow in Spring 2020. The workshop will be held in the City Hall Council Chambers. 

Public invited map

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The City’s Concept Plan 

Construction duration is anticipated to be four months, with much of the work taking place in the underground channel with no visible disturbance to the general public. The two publicly visible components would include the reconstruction of the Beach Street transition structure and the Main Beach outlet structure, where the work may pose an intermittent pedestrian and/or vehicular impact. Work is expected to take approximately five weeks at each location. 

If you are unable to attend the meeting and would like to provide comments, contact Mark Trestik at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (949) 497-0300.

Laguna Beach City Council Chambers is located at 505 Forest Ave.


Applicants for committee and board seats to be vetted by council tonight

By BARBARA DIAMOND

Tonight (Tuesday), the City Council will interview applicants for seats on six city committees, the Design Review Board and the Vector Control District and make appointments.

Thirty-nine applicants will have the opportunity to make their case for appointment at the meeting, which begins at 6 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. 

The Design Review Board alone has 10 applicants.

The meeting will begin at 6 p.m., following a joint meeting with the sitting board at 5 p.m. No agenda for the joint meeting was available at deadline. 

Recreation Committee

Five seats open on the seven-member committee, with five applicants: John D. Goodkind, David Hand and incumbents Evan Pinto, Walter Bell and Anna Cathleen Greiner.

One seat is for a one-year term, beginning April 1. Four seats are for two-year terms, also to begin April 1.

Heritage Committee

Three seats open on the five-member committee, with three applicants: Mike Boone, Clark Collins and Linda Morgenlander, all incumbents. 

Two-year terms begin April 1.

View Restoration Committee

Three seats open on the five-member committee, with three applicants: incumbents Rebecca Carson, Ruben Flores and Ara Hovanesian.

Two-year terms begin April 1.

Vector Control District

Michael Morris was the lone applicant for the position of Laguna’s representative to the Vector Control District.

The term begins immediately and runs through Jan 24, 2021.

Environmental Sustainability Committee

Five seats open on the seven-member committee, with seven applicants: X Felix Desroches, Julianna Essens, Alan Flatt, Anna Marie Girtz, Judie Mancuso and incumbents Michael Beanan and Emerich Hlava.

One seat is for one year, beginning April 1. Four seats are for two-year terms, also to begin April 1.

Parking, Traffic and Circulation Committee

Four seats open on the seven-member committee, with five applicants: Carolyn R. Aufhmmer, Byron Nelson, Hamid “Tony” Rahimian, Michael Schneider and incumbent Lawrence Esten.

Two-year terms begin April 1.

Measure LL Audit Oversight Committee

One seat opens on the seven-member committee, with five applicants: Louis Carson, Glenn Gray, Robin K. Hall, Ara Hovanesian and Victoria McIntosh to fill the vacancy left when Deborah Slessinger resigned in December. 

The term begins immediately and will run through Jan 31, 2022.

Design Review Board

Three seats open on the five-member board, with 10 applicants: Alan Armbruster, Louis Carson, Chad Edgley, David G. Epstein, Gary Monroe, Dennis Myers, Spring Robinson, Kristine Thalman, Louis Weil and incumbent Deborah Neev. 

Two-year terms begin April 1. 

Applicants for city committees, boards and commissions must be residents. 

Descriptions of committee duties and applications for appointments are available for review following the staff report for each committee at www.lagunabeachcity.net.


Laguna Beach Garden Club hosts silent auction on Friday

The Laguna Beach Garden Club presents a Container Gardens & Garden Art Silent Auction on Friday, Feb 8 at 9:30 a.m. at the Laguna Presbyterian Church, located at 415 Forest Ave. Unique arrangements of all colors and sizes will be on display for all to bid on at all price points. Proceeds will go toward educational school gardens, local scholarships, and civic beautification. 

Following the auction, the garden club will present its monthly meeting and the final bidding will take place at 11 a.m. 

Laguna Beach love

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Lovely Valentine’s Day gifts will be up for auction 

The Laguna Beach Garden Club embraces school gardens throughout Laguna Beach, believing in the many educational benefits children obtain with hands-on gardening. Gardening activities engage students in a learning process not available in classrooms.

The LB Garden Club financially supports school gardens at El Morro and Top of the World Elementary Schools, Thurston Middle School, Laguna Beach Presbyterian Pre-School, and Anneliese Willowbrook Campus.

The Laguna Beach Garden Club, Laguna Beach Beautification Council, and the City of Laguna Beach have collaborated by planting around the magnificent Melaleuca Tree in Heisler Park. 

Ruben Flores has been on a mission to save this beautiful tree from the many climbers it has been supporting for too many years. Its limbs are damaged, and the over 50-year-old tree is in danger of being no more. While the plants are growing, please remind any climbers you may see to resist the temptation of using it as a bench.

For more information about the auction, contact Diane Lannon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information on Laguna Beach Garden Club, visit www.lagunabeachgardenclub.org.    

Laguna Presbyterian Church is located at 415 Forest Ave.


Laguna Ocean Foundation seeks volunteer Tidepool Docents, training on Wednesday

The Laguna Ocean Foundation is currently looking for volunteer Tidepool Docents to educate the public about the unique ecology in Laguna’s protected tidepools. The next class training will be held on Wednesday, Feb 6 from 6 - 8 p.m. at the Ocean Institute. 

Docents are required to be at least 18 years of age and volunteer at the tidepools for at least one monthly three-hour shift at Crescent Bay, Shaws Cove, Woods Cove or Goff Cove, all within the Laguna Beach Marine Protected Area. Explore the opportunity to become a Tidepool Docent and experience the excitement of sharing the marine life in the tidepools with local residents and visitors. 

Laguna Ocean starfish

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Explore Laguna’s breathtaking sea life while learning about our protected tidepools

Laguna Ocean Foundation is dedicated to sustainable ocean ecosystems protecting and preserving the intertidal zone, watersheds, and ocean waters of Laguna Beach. The nonprofit’s purpose is to engage with the public about the importance of protecting these resources through outreach and education. 

For more information regarding the Foundation, visit www.lagunaoceanfoundation.org.   

To sign up for the program or for further information, contact Suzanne Welsh, Tidewater Docent Coordinator, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (949) 522-5187.

The Ocean Institute is located at 24200 Dana Point Harbor Dr, Dana Point.


LOCA and LPAPA present Painting FUNdamentals on Saturday at TOW

On Saturday, Feb 9 from 9 - 11:30 a.m., LOCA and LPAPA invite families and adults to Painting FUNdamentals at Top of the World Elementary School. Guests can choose from beginner, intermediate or advanced work stations and learn the techniques in creating great landscapes. 

LOCA and artist

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Courtesy of LOCA

LPAPA instructors will teach the workshop

Laguna Plein Air Painters Association (LPAPA) instructors include Rick Delanty, Brandon Gonzales, and Wendy Wirth. LOCA instructors will assist the indoor painting workshop. 

The cost is $40 and includes all supplies. Advanced registration is required. 

To register, visit www.lpapa.org or call (949) 376-3635. 

Top of the World Elementary School is located at 21601 Treetop Ln.


Seasonal ocean lifeguard testing, Feb 16 and March 2

Photos by Scott Brashier

The City of Laguna Beach’s Marine Safety Department will be testing candidates for seasonal ocean lifeguard summer positions in the coming month. Tryouts will be held on Saturday, Feb 16 and Saturday, March 2. The physical events portion will begin at 9 a.m. (sign-in starts at 7:30 a.m.) at the Main Beach Lifeguard Tower (The White Tower).

Seasonal ocean paperwork

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Filling out necessary paperwork

Qualified applicants must be at least 16 years of age as of June 30, 2019.

In order to participate in the tryouts process, candidates must fill out an application available online, and read the attachment provided from the Marine Safety Lieutenant.

A waiver form is required of all candidates to participate in physical testing (tryouts) and training activities for the positions of Rookie and Seasonal Ocean Lifeguard I. If a candidate is under 18 years of age, the signature of a parent or guardian is required.

Seasonal ocean in line

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Waiting in line

The physical testing will consist of three events: (1) 1,000 meter ocean swim – candidates must complete a 1,000 meter ocean swim in less than 20 minutes to qualify for the remainder of the physical testing; (2) Run/Ocean Swim/Run; and (3) Sprint/Ocean Swim.

Swim caps will be issued on the morning of testing and are mandatory to swim. Goggles, wetsuits, and flotation devices are not allowed.

Seasonal ocean ready

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Ready, set, go

Complete and submit an application online at: www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/marine/employment_opportunities.htm.

Candidates who have not submitted a complete application online prior to the deadline will not be eligible to test.

Seasonal ocean swimming

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Physical testing

Applicants with questions should contact Captain Kai Bond at (949) 464-6663 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Where’s Maggi – the answers!

Maggi wins this round. There was one – just one – reader who knew where this photo was taken. Not just any reader, it was Shaena, our publisher and editor! She’s sharp-eyed, people.

The rest of you may be wondering where the heck this tree of CD’s is blossoming. You can find it on St. Ann’s, right across the street from the Neighborhood Congregational Church.

Thanks for following Maggi’s whereabouts, and for sending in your answers! 

Wheres Maggi 2 5 19

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A tree of CD’s, found on St. Ann’s Drive 


Local Red Cross blood drive a huge success

On Wednesday, Jan 30, the Laguna Presbyterian Church sponsored a blood drive for American Red Cross. The blood drive was a huge success, with many people donating blood to help save lives.

“Laguna Presbyterian Church and the Red Cross had one of our most successful Blood Drives [on January 30]! 37 donors signed in and 38 units of blood were collected. Three of the donors gave ‘Power Red’ – which is twice the usual amount of red cells, but they are separated from the rest of the blood components and plasma and platelets are returned to the body,” stated Sandy Grim, ARC/LPC Blood Drive Coordinator. 

“Thank you, Stu News, for putting the emergency need for blood, as well as our drive front and center. This was truly a ‘community’ drive here in north-central Laguna, as the majority of those signing in were not members of our church, and three said they ‘winter’ in here Laguna.

“The community’s support (and that of Stu News) is truly appreciated.”

The next blood drive at Laguna Presbyterian Church will be held on May 15 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Chamber keeps busy with three Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies and monthly mixer on Thursday

This Thursday, Feb 7 is going to be a busy evening for the Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce, which plans on having three Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies and its monthly mixer at the Wine Gallery all in one night. Three of the Chamber’s newest members happen to be friends and are all located next to each other, so everything is in close proximity. The Chamber invites everyone to attend a great night of celebration along with enjoyable food and company.

Chamber keeps the garage

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The Garage Collective’s ribbon cutting starts the evening at 5 p.m.

The first Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will begin at 5 p.m. at the Garage Collective (located at 1854 S Coast Hwy). Owner Kristin Lewis started from her garage and doing pop-ups in 2015 and manages a space where artists, makers, and creatives collaborate and inspire each other. The shop is a curated mix of unique local finds and artisans, and includes home goods, jewelry, and gifts. Lewis’ mission is to offer locals a place where they can always find something affordable and unique. 

Chamber keeps Blue Yoga

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Next, on to Pacific Blue Yoga across the street

Across the street beginning at 5:30 p.m., the Chamber will have its second ceremony at Pacific Blue Yoga (located directly behind the Wine Gallery at 1833 S Coast Hwy #120). Owners Brad and Marna Bright have been operating their business in Laguna Beach since 2002. They recently changed their name from Bikram Yoga (in 2015) and have been occupying their new space since 2017. 

Pacific Blue Yoga’s mission is to provide a supportive environment for people to improve the quality of their lives through authentic, passionate yoga and incredible community. Pacific Blue Yoga is the only studio in town that offers hot yoga with the additional benefit of infrared heat. They have a full menu of different yoga styles taught by some of the most experienced instructors in Orange County. They were also recently voted Best Yoga Studio by Laguna Beach Vibe.

Chamber keeps Wine Gallery

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Ribbon cutting at the Wine Gallery at 6:45 p.m.

The next stop of the trilogy is the mixer hosted by Chris Olsen from the Wine Gallery (located at 1833 S Coast Hwy). The Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Wine Gallery will be at 6:45 p.m. Chris will be offering samples from one of the best menus in town. Opened in 2012, The Wine Gallery continues to be a local favorite. The restaurant has a traditional Italian wood fired brick oven with a full food menu, over 25 wines by the glass, and a rotating craft draft beer list. Their mission is to create connections and community by engaging the senses.

RSVP to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Chabad Jewish Center focuses on mental health awareness on Friday with Glennwood House

On Friday, Feb 8 at 6 p.m., Chabad of Laguna Beach will partake in ShabbaTTogether, a global effort to promote inclusion and mental health awareness in 200 communities on six continents. 

The community is invited to join together for an evening with Glennwood House friends featuring a short, joyous Shabbat prayer service, delicious buffet, and remarks from Glennwood House parents and staff.

Chabad enjoys a beautiful relationship with Glenwood House Laguna Beach, and the residents feel a sense of belonging when they come for services, holiday events, and programs.

ShabbatTTogether will take an important step in incorporating inclusion of individuals with disabilities and mental health conditions in the synagogue and throughout Jewish life, in conjunction with Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month (JDAIM). 

A focus of the weekend will be learning how community members can better support people with disabilities so that they feel at home in the synagogue and at community events.

Admission is free and sponsorships are available.

RSVP to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.or by calling (949) 499 0770. 

Chabad is located at 30804 S. Coast Hwy.

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