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LBHS Drama & Park Avenue Players will presents All Shook Up, opening Friday March 16, inspired by Elvis

Get ready for a rock ‘n roll musical comedy presented by LBHS Drama & Park Avenue Players. This show is inspired by and features the songs of Elvis Presley, and is based on the book by Joe DiPietro. The show will open Friday, March 16, 17, 23, and 24 with all performances taking place at 7 p.m. Two additional shows on March 18 and 25 will take place at 2:30 p.m at the Artist Theater. 

This man needs no introduction

The story is all new, the hits are all Elvis. It’s 1955, and into a square little town in a square little state rides a guitar-playing young man who changes everything and everyone he meets in this hip-swiveling, lip-curling musical fantasy that’ll have you jumpin’ out of your blue suede shoes with such classics as “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Jailhouse Rock,” and “Don’t Be Cruel.”

Tickets are on sale now: students $12, adults $17, and premium tickets $22. For more information or to purchase tickets, log onto www.lbhs.booktix.com.


SchoolPower’s Chef Challenge – one of the community’s most fun events – takes place March 26

It’s going to be a throwdown! SchoolPower’s Chef Challenge IX, hosted by Suzanne and Cary Redfearn at The Lumberyard, is coming up Monday, March 26.

Come enjoy a fabulous three-course dinner prepared by Lumberyard chefs and a friendly competition between the menu selections of LBUSD principals -- with attendees choosing the winner. 

Will it be the menu selections of elementary school principals Chris Duddy and Michael Conlon, or upper school principals Jenny Salberg and Jason Allemann?

Whoever takes home the trophy, event guests will be the real winners -- and, of course, Laguna Beach schools.   

Buy your tickets now at www.lbschoolpower.org/chefs-challenge.


Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach received $6,000 grant from the Festival of Arts Foundation

Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach is thrilled to announce the receipt of a $6,000 grant from the Festival of Arts Foundation to fund its Arts-For-All program, available to all members during their time after school. The organization believes that play and art create a healthy role in the learning and development of every child, as imagination and creativity are vital components of increasing their full potential as adults. 

The Club’s arts programing provide members with opportunities that generate ideas and enhance their ability to transform vision into a reality while navigating the world around them.

Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach is dedicated in providing a diverse array of art programs, in which each area serves our youth through exposure, education and enriching experiences. Not only do children have the opportunity to learn how to create art, but also experience the thrill of seeing their pieces displayed in onsite exhibits while entering their art into local and national art competitions.

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Boys & Girls Club members enjoying art activities at Crystal Cove

Caitlin Reller, Art Director of Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, is building fun and exciting activities related to all aspects of art and youth development, all thanks to the assistance of funding from the Festival of Art Foundation. 

As an example, during the recent Laguna Beach Unified School District’s Ski Week, Ms. Reller organized a field trip to Crystal Cove with 18 members. In collaboration with the Crystal Cove Conservancy Club, members took a tour of the park and participated in a Plein Air watercolor activity and a photographic scavenger hunt. The resulting art from these activities are on display at the Crystal Cove Gallery during Crystal Cove’s Art in the Park festival. The opening of the art exhibit is March 31 and members’ pieces will be on display for the duration of April. The Club invites the entire community to come and view the artistic talents of the participants.

The Art of Healing event on March 28 at the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, Canyon Branch, from 5 to 7 p.m. is yet another exciting event that the Festival of Arts Foundation is helping make possible. The event will be a collaborative experience where parents and children have the opportunity to come together and create art as a shared, joyful experience. Activities will include visual art, the art of cooking, creating essential oils for healing and much, much more.  The Club invites the entire community to this special event.

Without the continuing support of the Festival of Arts Foundation, these wonderful opportunities for families within the community would not be possible. For more information about the activities, please contact Michelle Ray Fortezzo at (949) 494-2535 ext. 7584 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit the Club website at www.bgclagunabeach.org.


LBHS Boys Golf wins a close one against Marina High School

LBHS Boys Golf scored a big win on the road Monday against Marina High School at Meadowlark Golf Club, besting the Vikings by three strokes. Junior Chase Gioffredi was a medalist for the first time in a high school match, shooting an even par 35.

While the top of the team’s line-up played well enough to put them in position to win (Chase Gioffredi – 35, Kyle Sharp – 35, Ben Sharp – 35, Gus Morck – 42), it was senior Miles Stripling who stepped up and made the difference. Stripling stepped in to start because Dante Fornaro, the team’s #3 player, was out with an injury. 

Initially struggling off the tee with his driver, Stripling got creative and started using his hybrids and long irons off the tee. This kept him out of trouble and resulted in a score of 44, one of his better finishes. This proved to be the difference and gave the team the win in a very close, non-league match. 

Team morale is high as the Breakers look to their first league match against Calvary Chapel on Wednesday.


LBHS Tennis in match-up today: Go Beach!

Today the high school boy’s tennis team will face off against St. Margaret’s at our home court beginning at 2:45 p.m. 

The players set to crush it at the home match include Andrew Johnson, Sammy Reynolds, Mason Lebby, Taylor Tran, Blake Hawkins, Francis Pillsbury, Kyle Herkins, Diego Tellez, Mohammad Berri, Matthew Duong, Andrew Duong, Matt Berk, and Casey Boehn.

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Photo by Rob Lebby

Mohammad Berri serves it up

Coach Rick Conkey said that the team has had four matches so far, and is doing well – especially the younger players. 

“The younger players have really improved,” he said. “Last year I scheduled matches against the top teams, and it really challenges them and inspires them.” 

The JV has an away game on Tuesday, and includes Warren Ingersoll, Jack Moran, Scott Yoder, Alex Chang, Jake Rasmussen, Arturo Vidaurri, Zachary Koster, Miles Riehle, Jack Lubin, Liam Rafary, Juilius Heide, and Taro Sakai.

On Thursday there will be a game vs. J Serra.

Go Beach!


LBUSD School Board meeting tonight to address Local Control Accountability Plan

A study session on the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) and stakeholder engagement will begin in open session at 6 p.m. tonight (Tues, March 13). The regular meeting will follow the study session. Regular meeting agenda items for Board consideration include a resolution on school safety and supporting the social and emotional needs of LBUSD students, approval of positive certification of the second interim financial report, and approval of the course of study for the 2018-19 school year.

The agenda for Tuesday’s regular Board meeting has been posted here: www.lbusd.org/uploaded/1-District/Board/Documents/2017-2018/Agendas/March_13,_2018_Board_Meeting_Agenda.pdf

The meeting begins at 6 p.m., March 13 at the District offices, 550 Blumont, and is open to the public.


SchoolPower’s Chef Challenge – one of the community’s most fun events – takes place March 26

It’s going to be a throwdown! SchoolPower’s Chef Challenge IX, hosted by Suzanne and Cary Redfearn at The Lumberyard, is coming up Monday, March 26.

Come enjoy a fabulous three-course dinner prepared by Lumberyard chefs and a friendly competition between the menu selections of LBUSD principals – with attendees choosing the winner. 

Click on photo for a larger image

Submitted photo

El Morro Principal Chris Duddy (left) will team up with TOW Principal Michael Conlon to take on LBHS Principal Jason Allemann and TMS Principal Jenny Salberg in this year’s SchoolPower Chef Challenge

Will it be the menu selections of elementary school principals Chris Duddy and Michael Conlon, or upper school principals Jenny Salberg and Jason Allemann?

Whoever takes home the trophy, event guests will be the real winners – and, of course, Laguna Beach schools.   

Buy your tickets now at www.lbschoolpower.org/chefs-challenge.


Help Thurston Middle School students go to the Global Finals

Six Thurston Middle School students, part of a Destination Imagination (DI) team, recently competed in the regional tournament and earned third place in the Scientific category. They need your vote for a chance to go to the Global Finals and compete with their scientific solution.

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Submitted photos

Thurston Middle School students who competed in the recent regional tournament, earning third place

Unfortunately, only the top two teams advance to the next level. However, there’s still a chance for them to go, but they need your support!

A member of the team, Colette (Coco) Reed, was selected as a finalist in a Pin Design competition and voting is taking place online through the end of the day on Sunday, March 18. 

Submitted photos

Colette (Coco) Reed’s pin design

The prize for Reed is $500 and, perhaps more importantly, their DI team would have the opportunity to go and compete in the Global DI Finals.

Vote online at www.tinyurl.com/send-us-di2018. Be sure to vote for “Colette” in the Middle School level.


Morgan, Lochner lead Breakers baseball to victory

Grady Morgan homered for the second straight game and Jack Loechner threw 5 innings, allowing only one run to lead Laguna Beach Breakers Varsity baseball to its second straight win, 7-1 over San Juan Hills. The win evened the Breakers record at 4-4 on the season.

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Photo by Sheri Morgan

Grady Morgan slides to the plate: Breakers give it their best every game

Laguna took the lead in the first after a walk by Morgan, who eventually came around to score on a wild pitch. The Stallions tied it in the top of the third at 1-1, but Morgan’s two-run homer to straight away center in the bottom half put the Breakers ahead for good 3-1. Kolton Freeman’s single later in the inning put Laguna up 4-1.

Meanwhile, Lochner cruised through the Stallions lineup, giving up only one run on four hits, while striking out six. Remy Mackel and Cutter Clawson each pitched a scoreless inning of relief to complete the Breakers dominance on the mound.

The Breakers added three more runs in the sixth. Loechner and Eric Silva both singled and then Michael Kerner followed with an RBI single, his third hit of the day. 

Morgan followed with a two RBI double to complete the scoring for Laguna and giving Morgan four RBI’s on the day.  

If it doesn’t rain, Breakers battle Calvary Chapel on Friday for the League Opener.


Six LBUSD teams advance to State competition in Destination Imagination® Tournament

Six teams, of four to seven students each, representing Laguna Beach High School, Thurston Middle School, and Top of the World Elementary have qualified to move on to the Destination Imagination (DI) state competition in Clovis on April 7. 

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Photo courtesy LBUSD

Destination Imagination proves that education is often great fun

Destination Imagination is an international educational program that enhances the growth and learning students receive in the classroom. Teams of students, ranging from third grade through university level, solve one of six open-ended Challenges in the fields of STEM, fine arts, and service learning and present their solutions at tournaments.

For Laguna Beach, three teams competed in the Scientific Challenge: Unlikely Attraction. Their challenge was to explore scientific concepts used in amusement park attractions, design and build an attraction that uses scientific concepts during its operation, create and present a story that features the attraction operating in an unlikely location, and portray the unlikely location using sights and sounds.

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Photo courtesy LBUSD

(L-R) Jacob Cruz, Hannah Kaiser, Sebastian Otterholt, Keira Hundhausen, Lucas Durant

Two teams competed in the Technical Challenge. The challenge asked them to design and build a device to navigate a tournament-provided maze, design and build a prop that transforms in the maze, design and build a way to remove an object from the maze, and create and present a story about a journey through the maze.

Finally, two teams competed in the Improvisational Challenge where they were asked to research different cultures and famous explorers, create and present an improvisational skit about a quest to return a lost cultural treasure to its owner, integrate two explorers and a prop into the quest, and show how characters work together to overcome a setback.

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Photo courtesy LBUSD

(L-R) James Dechary, Tyler Palino, Dylan Newburry, Chris Herkins

 “Thurston Middle School DI teams represented Thurston with great intelligence, creativity, and humor,” said Ina Inouye Wu and Bjorn Avila, Destination Imagination club advisors at Thurston Middle School. They continued, “We are so proud of all the students for their months of hard work, perseverance, and out-of-the-box thinking to solve DI challenges.”

Winners of the State competition compete at the global competition in Knoxville, Tennessee in May.

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