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“Waves of Freedom” named as theme of 52nd Patriots Day Parade: note deadlines for entries and ads 

On Sat, March 3, 2018, the 52nd Laguna Beach Patriots Day Parade will fill the parade route with “Waves of Freedom,” the newly announced theme. This theme applies to the Laguna Beach community on many levels. Laguna is located on the Pacific coast, so waves have always been a part of residents’ lives.  

Additionally, the flag waving above the shore at Monument Point is an iconic image of LB. That image reminds all how freedom has grown in the nation since its founding in 1776. 

Click on photo for larger image

Photo by Mary Hurlbut

“Waves of Freedom” theme of 2018 Patriots Day Parade

Beginning with the Bill of Rights in our Constitution, citizens can trace ‘waves of freedom’ through its amendments, for example, the right to due process, the abolition of slavery, and the granting of voting rights to women and minorities.  

Waves ebb and flow and that is why the organizers of the parade believe that the many freedoms in the republic should be treasured and never taken for granted.

The Laguna Beach Patriots Day Parade is funded by program advertising and donations. The advertising deadline is January 8, 2018 and the entry deadline is January 12.

For further information, phone Sandi Werthe at (949) 494-6016 or email

Diane Armitage

Where To Buy Gifts For The Most Difficult Person on Your List

If you’re one of those gift-buying people who buys socks and coffee grinders for people at the holidays, this column is not for you. You’ll have absolutely no interest in going to Laguna Beach’s annual “Winter Fantasy Festival” on the Sawdust Festival grounds because you would find too many creative, one-of-a-kind gift ideas for the people you love. 

Time to Ho-Ho-Holiday Shop!

The Laguna Beach Winter Fantasy Festival is underway this coming weekend with 170 artists’ booths. It runs officially Nov. 18, and 19, Nov. 24, 25 and 26, and then each weekend in December through the 17th. 

Pricing continues to be extremely reasonable: $8 adults, $6 seniors, $4 for kids ages 6-12, and FREE for kids 5 and under. If you’re planning to drop in more than once, pick up the “season pass” for just $10. It’s easier to get the tickets online, but you can also stand in line for on-site purchase. 

Your Entire Holiday in a Single Visit

I love the Winter “Sawdust” more than our summer affair, the Sawdust Art Festival (which I happen to like a lot). Aside from 170 artists’ booths in this cool outdoor setting, you have a “Towne Square” (sorry grownups, this is kid-size only), live bands and chorales, wandering carolers, plenty of hot, steamy drinks (along with quality beer and wine) and, of course, Santa for all those last-minute requests. 

Photo by Diane Armitage

Baubles, bangles, bright shiny beads…

For me, the Winter Fantasy Festival is most memorable because the majority of artists focus on gift-giving items.You’ll still have gargantuan paintings and sculptures here and there, but you’ll see a greater supply of handmade jewelry, scarves, reasonably priced framed photos and paintings, pottery and Raku, garden accessories and everything else gifty-minded. 

Favorite Gift Ideas

I, for one, go to the Winter Sawdust to purchase beautiful hand-blown Christmas ornaments for my clients and friends – they make great hostess gifts, too. Chris Jeffries, my favorite tree ornament artist there, sends out email notices when the baubles have “discount days,” too. 

Photo by Diane Armitage

Music and much more

I’ve also purchased many Raku pots from Mike Brennan as gifts for delighted clients and close friends. (In fact., after about 12 or so purchases, I finally purchased my own Raku pot this summer!) They are spectacular bonuses for any lucky recipient on your list. 

Regardless of the number of years I’ve lived here, I make a habit of visiting the Winter Fantasy Festival every year. It simply offers new and always-evolving solutions for your gift-buying list. I’ll see you there this weekend! 

Diane Armitage is the best-selling author of the book,

The Best of Laguna Beach, and offers a cornucopia of ideas and upcoming events at her blog,

Something for everyone in our wilderness parks

Reservations required

Sign-up online:

949-923-2235. Parking: $3 


Laguna Coast

Wilderness Park


California Native Plants and Uses

Tues, Nov 14

8:30 a.m.- 11 a.m.

Learn about the many fascinating uses of California native plants during the pre-mission period, on this 2-mile hike (490-ft. elevation gain) over steep and uneven terrain. This hike will focus on plants used historically for tools, food and building materials. For ages 12 and up. Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, James Dilley Preserve (I-5 or 405 south to 133 south to stoplight at 73 toll road; make a U-turn, go 1 block. Dilley is on the right.) For questions call: 949-497-8324 Mon-Fri & 949-923-2235 Sat/Sun. Parking: $3/vehicle.


Fitness Hike at Ridge Park

Thurs, Nov 16

8:30 a.m.- 11 a.m.

Raise your heart rate and your spirits on this moderate, fast-paced, 6.5-mile hike (700-ft. elevation gain) over very steep, uneven terrain with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteers. Ages 15 and up. Please assess your fitness level as this is a very strenuous hike. Be sure you can maintain a 16 minute mile. Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Ridge Park Staging Area (Newport Coast Drive to Ridge Park Rd. east to end; meet at the gate.) For questions call: 949-497-8324 Mon-Fri, 949-923-2235 Sat/Sun.

Parking: Free


Keep It Wild Volunteer Day

Sat, Nov 18

8 a.m.- 11 a.m.

Come on out and help restore the wild lands we so enjoy! There’s no better way to start a Saturday morning than by joining OC Parks and Laguna Canyon Foundation staff in an invigorating project of non-native plant removal and/or planting native plants. Help us make a healthier environment for the native wildlife and for ourselves. Little Sycamore Canyon Staging Area/Nix Nature Center (west side of Laguna Canyon Rd/SR-133, approximately 3.5 miles south of I-5/405). For questions call: 949-497-8324 Mon-Fri & 949-923-2235 Sat/Sun. Parking: Free for Keep it Wild volunteers!


Bird Walk

Sun, Nov 19

8 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Spot local native and winter resident birds with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteer naturalists on this two-mile hike over uneven terrain (up to 200-ft. elevation gain) through one of the most diverse plant communities in the United States. No experience necessary! Ages 12 and up. Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, James Dilley Preserve (I-5 or 405 south to 133 south to stoplight at 73 toll road; and make a U-turn, go 1 block. Dilley is on the right.)

For questions call: 949-497-8324 Mon-Fri & 949-923-2235 Sat/Sun.

Parking: $3/vehicle.



City Hall

Committee Meetings - Etc.

. . . 

Mon, Nov 20

Heritage Committee

6 p.m.

City Council Chambers 


Tues, Nov 21

Environmental Sustainability Committee Meeting

6 p.m.

Community & Susi Q Center

Off-season transit hours 

Laguna Beach Transit off-season hours are as follows:  

Coastal Trolley: Friday, 4 to 11 p.m.; Sat, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

Neighborhood Trolleys in Top of the World, Arch Beach Heights and Bluebird Canyon: Monday through Thursday 6:40 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; and Sunday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Neighborhood Service to North and South Laguna: Monday through Friday 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. 

For more information visit the City’s website at


Volume 9, Issue 92                                                                        November 17, 2017

Neighborhood Church 081514

Neighborhood Church will bless Eagle Scout member’s benches

Click on photo for a larger image

Submitted photos

The skimboard bench by Brantlee Griffith at NCC

Brantlee Griffith, a recent graduate of Dana Hills High School and a member of Neighborhood Congregational Church designed, crafted, and built three unique benches for the church courtyard for his Eagle Scout Service Project last January.  This Sunday, Neighborhood Congregational Church (NCC) will honor Brantlee’s important work as they bless the three benches during their 10 a.m. worship service, where Brantlee will also be performing as a solo violist. All are invited and welcome to attend.

Last winter, Neighborhood Church removed grass to install a low-water, sustainable garden on the corner of Glenneyre and St. Ann’s. Brantlee designed the benches to complement that effort and to mirror the unique, artistic community in Laguna. Each bench is different. 

Click on photo for a larger image

Griffith and his team at the Neighborhood Church

“I wanted the benches to reflect the community:  One uses skimboards for the back of the bench to recognize the surf culture, and another has a sunburst to show the beautiful sunsets we have in Laguna,” said Brantlee. He and his team of youth and adults put in over 250 volunteer hours designing and building the benches.

Earning Eagle Scout requires commitment over a period of years to learn outdoor skills, earn at least 21 merit badges in different areas of interest, do community service projects, and learn leadership by holding various troop positions. Brantlee surpassed the requirements, demonstrated he lives by the principals of the Scout Oath and Law, and proved he has the character of an Eagle Scout.  

Click on photo for a larger image


Carrie Pohlhammer & Vicky Wilson relax on another of Griffith’s unique designs

Griffith has been a member of Troop 772 in Laguna Niguel since seventh grade. He’s held the positions of Quartermaster, Leave No Trace Trainer, Patrol Leader, and Instructor. He’s also Vice President of Venturing Crew 772, a co-ed high adventure group for youth 14-21 years old. He’s done extensive backpacking in the Sierras, canoed the Colorado River, experienced Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, and climbed Mt. Whitney--twice. He’s an AP Scholar with Honors, Varsity Letterman on the Cross Country team, Varsity Hurdler on the Track team, Orchestra Viola Section Leader, and President of the Junior Achievement Club.

I am proud of the way our community helps homeless people.
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Events, programs at Susi Q

Events require advance registration by calling (949) 464-6645

Parking is Free!

Laguna Beach Seniors is on Facebook! Sign up to receive our newsletter:


Hearing Screenings

2nd Thurs | 1:30-3:30pm | Free

Hearing screening and consultationwith audiologist Dr. Rose-Marie Davisincludes complimentary hearing aid cleaningand minor repairs. Call 949-464-6645to schedule an appointment.

Family Caregiver

Support Group

2nd & 4th Wed | 3- 4:30pm | Free

Sharing confidential, emotional support and resources among caregivers.

Club Q Laguna

1st and 3rd Friday | 3-5pm

Join Laguna’s LGBT seniors for seasonal potlucks, free movies and snacks, speakers, and outside group events. In good company, the club also enjoys working on community service projects.

Ted Talks

1st & 3rd Tuesday | 10-12 p.m.

Limited Space

TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, in the form of short, powerful talks. Contact Al Gumb if you’d like to join: 

Computer Assistance

Thursdays Noon-3pm. Please call ahead. One-on-one help with your laptop, smart phone, or tablet, PC & Mac/Apple, Windows 7&8.

Benefits Enrollment Center

Council on Aging and Laguna Beach Seniors introduce the Benefits Enrollment Center at The Susi Q to assist seniors and persons with disabilities find and apply for benefit programs.

Enrollment Available every first Monday 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. Free 

Call to register: 949-464-6645

Social Services Support

Feeling the Blues Counseling

One-on-one sessions for men and women.Schedule an appointment with a mental health professional. 10 free sessions. Call for more information (949) 715-8104

More Susi Q events below

More events, programs at the Susi Q

Events require advance registration by calling (949) 464-6645

Parking is Free!

Laguna Beach Seniors is on Facebook! Sign up to receive our newsletter:


*NEW* Living Well with Cancer Support Group

2nd & 4th Tue | 10-11:30am | Free

A caring support group open to individuals over 50 touched by any type of cancer. For more information, reach out to facilitator Sandra Weiss at 949-499-5293 or email her at 

*NEW* Ties That Bind Men’s Group

Fridays | 11am-12:30pm | Free

For men 50+, get support from the general stress of everyday living and any other issues affecting your well-being. Open group, drop-ins welcome. Contact facilitator Clint Christie, M.A. at 949-715-8104 for details.

Care Management

Mon – Fri | 9am- 5pm |

Saturday (apt. only) | 9am – 1pm


Providing linkage to resources that promote safety and quality of life. Call for appt.

Small Circle Standing Yoga

Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9-10am. $4 per class. The overall benefits will affect every aspect of your health and the quality of your daily life. Exercises can be performed while standing or while sitting in a chair. No floor or mat exercises are performed. Instructor: Wayne Lawrence

Adult Hula Lessons

Fridays from 1:30-2:30pm

$3 suggested donation per class. Come and dance the hula with us! The gentle and graceful movements will make you forget your troubles and mentally transport you to the islands. 

Take the bus to the Susi Q

The city’s blue buses now stop right in front of the Susi Q Monday – Saturday all day. 

Schedules will be posted at all bus stops, so getting here is easier than ever. You won’t have to deal with traffic or parking!

Interpreting Current Events 

Tuesday and Friday | 9:30- 11:30am

Join this discussion of newsworthy events, and topics of special interest.


Join us for Bingo every Monday and Thursday from 10:30-11:30am. Try your luck to win prizes and gift cards. National Charity League sponsors “Birthday Celebration Bingo” on the 3rd Wednesday of every month, from 10:30-11:30am. Free!

Monday Movie and Popcorn

Free every Monday from 12:30-3pm. See movie schedule at

Intermediate Ballroom Dancing

Mon | 2- 3pm | Intermediate | $7 per class – Drop-ins welcome! Waltz, Rumba, Swing, Watusi, ChaCha, Country two-step, Fox Trot. No partner required.  Instructor: Candis Davis

Health Insurance Counseling (HICAP)

1st & 3rd Mon | 9am- Noon | Free

Providing assistance and objective information to help seniors and disabled persons make informed decisions about health care coverage, Medicare benefits and supplemental insurance plan options.  Sponsored by the Council on Aging.  Call 949-464-6645 for an appointment.

More Susi Q events below

More events, programs at the Susi Q

Events require advance registration by calling (949) 464-6645

Parking is Free!

Laguna Beach Seniors is on Facebook! Sign up to receive our newsletter:


Free Legal Clinic

Seaside Legal Services

Providing professional legal assistance to seniors age 55+ who cannot afford counsel. Attorney’s Jane Fulton and Leslie Lindgren provide help and/or referrals for family law; health-related issues; consumer problems; conservatorships; housing; elder abuse; bankruptcy; wills and power of attorney. Must be an OC resident with proof of residency. Call first to make an appointment, 949-715-8104. No walk-ins.

Contemporary Short Story Seminar

2nd & 4th Tuesdays | 2 – 4 pm

Members will take turns leading discussions of selected stories. Contact Alison King, Ph. D. for more information: (714) 608-1322 or email her at:

Free Estate Planning Legal Advice

3rd Thursday of each month from 12-2 p.m. Local Attorney Leslie Daff is available to answer questions pertaining to estate planning, probate, and trust administration and to prepare and notarize financial powers of attorney, advanced health care directives, and HIPAA authorizations at no charge.

We have Bridge for all levels!

Call to find out about classes!


Bridge Group needs fourths

The Round Robin Bridge group is looking for new players and substitute players. The group meets the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month from 11:30am-2:30pm at the Susi Q. If interested, please contact Penny Joseph at

Tabletop Treasures

Every other Monday | 9am – Noon (check the front desk for schedule)

Fabulous recycled and second time around treasures for sale at bargain prices. Small donated items are always appreciated for drop off from 9am-3pm. No clothing please. Proceeds benefit weekly Bingo and fund the Laguna Beach High School Scholarship from LBS.

Heart to Heart

Join Laguna residents and facilitator Kay Wenger, LMFT, in a supportive atmosphere where concerns, coping skills, and helping tips are shared. This free ongoing group meets every Monday 10-11:30 a.m.

Open Game Room

Wednesdays | 12:30-4:30pm 

Game day fun including Scrabble, Mahjongg and other board games .

Needle Arts Guild 

The Susi Q Community Needle Arts Guild meets on the last Friday of every month at 1 pm creating handmade items for local organizations. 

Alzheimer’s & Dementia Caregiver Support Group

Join us the first Wednesday of every month from 1-3 p.m. for an informational meeting and informal discussion.  Strategies will be shared for dealing with loved ones who are affected by the disease.

Table Tennis every week

Tabletop tennis, or ping pong as some might label it, is offered every Mon & Wed | 12:30 – 4pm

Friday | 12:30 – 2:30pm

Saturday times vary

There is a $25 annual fee. 

Bring your own paddle or borrow one of ours.  All we ask is that you wear non-skidding shoes. 

All levels of play are welcome!

Crystal Cove State Park


Sea Glass Jewelry 

Wed, Nov 15, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

Learn the art of wire-wrapping sea glass in the Education Commons in Crystal Cove State Park Historic District. Turn a found item into a beautiful
piece of jewelry. Park in the Los Trancos lot (PCH inland at stoplight Los Trancos then
walk across the street or take the shuttle.) $15 day use fee.


Spider Hike

Fri, Nov 17, 9 a.m.

Autumn is an exciting time to learn about our local nature. Join park naturalists on a family nature hike at Crystal Cove
State Park to learn about the plants and animals living in the park. Meet at the Berns Amphitheater (PCH inland at stoplight School-State Park follow the signs to the Campground/Moro day use.) $15 day-use fee.


Seaweeds & Sea Creatures of Crystal 

Sat, Nov 18, 12 p.m.

There are countless species of marine algae; green, red, and brown found on the beach. Learn about the biology, ecology, and even human uses of seaweeds. Meet at Pelican Point parking lot #2, at the top of the boardwalk near the parking lot (PCH coastward at Newport Coast, right at kiosk to first lot.) $15 day-use fee.


Family Hike

Sun, Nov 19, 9 a.m.

Autumn is an exciting time to learn about our local nature. Join park naturalists on a family nature hike at Crystal Cove
State Park to learn about the plants and animals living in the park. Meet at the Berns Amphitheater (PCH inland at stoplight School-State Park follow the signs to the Campground/Moro day use.) $15 day-use fee.


Historic District 

Sun, Nov 19, 12 - 2 p.m.

Former life-long resident
Laura Davick will share stories about the colorful past of the Cove including the history, its rescue, and the plans for restoring the remaining 17 cottages. Park at Los Trancos parking lot then cross PCH at the signaled intersection and walk across the marked pathways and meet at the bluff top deck of the overnight rental check-in cottage. Day-use fee: $5/per hour (max. $15).

Shaena Stabler is the Owner and Publisher.

Lynette Brasfield is our Editor.

Dianne Russell is our Associate Editor.

The Webmaster is Michael Sterling.

Katie Ford is our in-house ad designer.

Alexis Amaradio, Cameron Gillepsie  Allison Rael, Barbara Diamond, Diane Armitage, Laura Buckle, Maggi Henrikson, Marrie Stone, Samantha Washer and Suzie Harrison are staff writers.

Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Laura Buckle and Suzie Harrison are columnists.

Mary Hurlbut, Scott Brashier, and Aga Stuchlik are the staff photographers.

We all love Laguna and we love what we do.

Email: for questions about advertising


Email: with news releases, letters, etc