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 Volume 11, Issue 23  |  March 19, 2019                                  


Creature Features

Winged migration: painted lady butterflies 


Granted, it’s not the same phenomenon as frogs falling from the sky, but the sight of countless butterflies fluttering past my car on Laguna Canyon Road sparked the same “end of the world” apprehension.

However, these painted ladies don’t signal annihilation, just the opposite, they are merely a reaction to the super bloom. Rain brings wildflowers, wildflowers attract painted lady butterflies, and they bring enchantment and wonder, lots of it. Scientists estimate the painted ladies number in the millions.

No doom, only super bloom

As quoted in the LA Times, “Substantial rainfall in the deserts near the Mexican border, where the North American painted ladies lay their eggs, is the reason for the unusually large swarms. The rain caused plants to thrive, giving the painted lady caterpillars plenty of food to fuel their transformation,” said Arthur M. Shapiro, a professor of evolution and ecology at the University of California, Davis. 

The entire North American population of painted lady butterflies migrates to west Texas and northern Mexico during the winter. As caterpillars, they feed on desert annual plants – their favorites are the families of mallows, borages, and thistles and their relatives – and then once butterflies, they begin traveling north. 

Although they reside only in the warmer climates, they (often) migrate into colder regions in spring and fall, making it the butterfly with the widest distribution of any species.

Winged migration sunflower

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

Nourishment from California Bush Sunflower in Laguna

California hasn’t experienced such a remarkable migration of these butterflies since 2005, when nearly a billion painted ladies attempted the trek from near Mexico to the Northwest. Most don’t complete the journey; the offspring of the first generation usually picks up where the others left off. 

It’s not because they’re slow. According to, painted ladies fly fast and far. These medium-sized butterflies can cover a lot of ground, up to 100 miles per day during their migration. A painted lady is capable of reaching a speed of nearly 30 miles per hour and reach northern areas well ahead of some of their more famous migrating cousins, like monarch butterflies. 

Painted ladies love fiddlenecks

Because they get such an early start to their spring travel, migrating painted ladies are able to feed on spring annuals, like fiddlenecks (Amsinckia), which are plentiful in Laguna Canyon Wilderness. Thanks to the super bloom, it’s a lot easier this time around, as their favorite plant is readily available. 

Painted ladies have unusual migration patterns and are referred to as an irruptive migrant, meaning that they migrate independent of any seasonal or geographic patterns. Some evidence suggests that painted lady migrations may be linked to the El Nino climate pattern. In Mexico and some other regions, it appears that migration is sometimes related to overpopulation. 

Winged migration Thornton

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Photo by Louise Thornton

Another local variety of flower to feast on

“They can live up to six weeks, but most don’t live that long. There will be waves of migration as the first generation makes it to northern California, they breed and then the next generation makes the trip to the Pacific Northwest,” Shapiro said.

In spring, painted ladies fly low when migrating, usually only six to 12 feet above the ground. This makes them highly visible to butterfly watchers, but also rather susceptible to colliding with cars. At other times, evidence suggests that painted ladies migrate at such high altitudes that they are not observed at all, simply appearing in a new region unexpectedly.

World travelers

Painted ladies – Venessa cardui – are also called the thistle (they are its favorite nectar plant for food) or cosmopolitan butterfly (because of its global distribution). They

inhabit every continent except Australia and Antarctica. The migrating populations that move from North Africa to Europe may include millions of butterflies, and migrating populations numbering hundreds of thousands of individuals are common. 

Surprisingly, these butterflies do have a downside. For you tofu lovers, the painted ladies can sometimes damage soybean crops when they are found in large numbers. The damage occurs during the larval stages when caterpillars eat soybean foliage after hatching from eggs. 

Although they’re called painted “ladies,” of course, there must be male painted ladies as well. Otherwise, no eggs. To this end, males appear to have a romantic side. During the afternoons, they use a perch and patrol method for finding mates, and although that sounds methodical, once they find a mate, the male whisks her up to a treetop (the amorous part), where they will mate overnight.

To go along with the glamorous title of painted lady, lady caterpillars weave silk tents. Who wouldn’t want a silk cocoon? Unlike other caterpillars in the genus Vanessa, painted lady larvae construct their tents from silk, which are fluffy shelters usually found on thistle plants. 

Hopefully, the migration won’t soon be over. Laguna has fallen in love with the spectacular sight of these incredible butterflies. It is reported that a few have already been spotted in the Northwest, but they appear to be staying a while in Southern California, and that makes residents happy.


Reservations now open for April 3 grand opening at The Royal Hawaiian

Chef Maro Molteni is back in Laguna Beach as the new owner/operator of The Royal Hawaiian Fire Grill and the grand opening is on Wednesday, April 3. 

Maro Molteni, the former owner of popular Maro Wood Grill, moved back to Laguna last summer in search of a new restaurant he could call his own. In late January, Maro and his brother, Martin, took over as 100 percent operators of the grand dame Royal Hawaiian, and have been renovating interiors and menus for a fresh new Polynesian take.

Reservations now outside

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Courtesy of Diane Armitage

Chef Maro Molteni

Visitors will find familiar Laguna local faces at the Royal Hawaiian, too. For starters, longtime Laguna mixologist Sean Melia is taking over the renowned Royal Hawaiian bar program and returning with the original Lapu-Lapu recipe.

Guests will experience a warm and breezy blend of the past, a beautiful present celebrating a new, masterful menu that marries the restaurants original Polynesian vibe with global coastal culinary, and a soon-to-be memorable future. 

The Molteni brothers are all about making our locals and traveling neighbors the Royal Hawaiian’s “ohana” family, so be sure to stop at The Royal Hawaiian in its own “island paradise” of beautiful Laguna Beach. 

To make dining reservations and be one of the first to experience the iconic Royal Hawaiian in a whole new way, visit

The Royal Hawaiian is located at 331 North Coast Hwy.

Council to hear Fire Chief’s proposed strategic plan


The City Council will hold a special hearing at 3:30 p.m. today to learn what strategies Fire Chief Mike Garcia proposes for his department for the next three years.

Garcia, 53, was appointed chief in April of 2018, after 28 years in the Long Beach Fire Department. He beat out 36 other applicants for the job. His priority since being hired was to review department operations, personnel and budget to come up with the city’s first Fire Department Strategic Plan, which he will introduce this afternoon. 

“For the past several months, I have met with all fire department personnel and reviewed all previous department consultation/strategic reports to assist with determining the framework for this plan,” Garcia wrote in the summary of the item.

The department he runs is the third largest in the city, with 43 employees and a budget of $9.5 million.

Besides interviewing fire department employees, the planning process for the proposed strategies also included identifying previous department needs and opportunities through various reports, a department wide all-hands meeting and a workshop. 

The department’s vision and values were developed and documented and its mission statement was rewritten at the workshop.

It now reads: “Our mission is to protect lives, the environment, and property from the threat of fire, explosion and other disasters, through emergency action, fire prevention, public education and to provide emergency medical treatment, physical rescues and transportation to a medical facility for the sick and injured.” 

Garcia took his findings to Jan Perkins, senior partner of Management Partners, to develop the plan that he describes as a road map for where the department is going and how it will get there.

The proposed plan will help the department make informed decisions about where to best align department resources with its responsibilities in the most efficient and effective manner, according to Garcia.

Along with developing implementation of the plan, Garcia is working with City Manager John Pietig to identify funding via the current budget process.

Council Consent Calendar includes six public arts proposals


Six of the 14 items on tonight’s Consent Calendar deal with Art in Public Places.

All six items are endorsed by the Arts Commission and all will be approved without comment unless pulled by a member of the council or the audience. The items range from temporary projects, to the development of public art in the Village Entrance to deaccession of Holiday Palettes. 

“This was the first date we could get for [commission] items,” said Cultural Arts Manager Sian Poeschl. “They have been piling up, but it is a good use of staff time to have them all on one agenda.”

If approved, Scott and Naomi Schoenherr’s installation at the Heisler amphitheater will be extended. The “Lunar Tides” will be inlaid into the existing stage area. A previously approved $25,000 donation from John Wolf would need to be augmented by an additional $14,000 from the city’s Art-in-Lieu Fund to meet the $54,000 cost of the 11-foot around, 2 inches deep installation.

The Schoenherrs also created the façade of the restrooms in the city parking lot between Ocean and Forest Avenues.

Temporary Installations

--Street artist Davis Zinn proposes to install up to 16 chalk works around downtown and Heisler Park from March 25 to March 29. Sites for “Hide and Seek” will not block the public right-of-way or business entrances. The cost of the temporary installation is $10,453, available in the Arts Commission’s Special Programs budget of the Business Improvement District, which is funded by a percentage of bed taxes.

--The commission also recommended approval of the temporary installation of three laser-cut steel figures measuring six feet tall on the City Hall lawn. The sculptures by the Hybycozo team of Yelena Filipchuck and Serge Bealieu will be internally lighted to cast shadows at night but may be dimmed or turned off when necessary. The installation will be up for three months, starting in April, at a cost of $20,000.

--Twenty-five proposals were received from artists who wanted to create a new look for the red phone booth on Forest Ave. The Arts Commission is recommending “Super Heroes Changing Room,” by Laguna Beach artist Robert Holton. The mixed media installation will consist of a 20-inch plastic fist mounted on the phone both, super hero costumes hanging inside and quotes from the characters.

Holton will retain ownership of the items and be paid $5,000 for their use. 

The commission unanimously endorsed proposals by Marc Fornes to fulfil the Art in Public Places requirement for the city’s Village Entrance project. 

Fornes will develop proposals for a pavilion-style space for meetings, a piazza for gatherings and a canopied space for small art events. 

The recommendation complies with the goals of the Cultural Arts Plan that supports the provision of more easily accessible, informal and year-round arts activities downtown and in the community.

Fornes will be paid $25,000 to develop the proposals.

--A purge of the city’s collection of Holiday Palettes that have been damaged by weather or trucks is recommended by the Arts Commission. Artists or their families may pick up the palettes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., May 18. 

Artist Work/Live Report

Tonight’s agenda also includes in the regular order of business, a feasibility report and market survey by Artspace on the need, available sites and funding for long-term affordable work-live accommodations for local artists.

Artspace concluded that the development of an artist work/live facility lacked financial feasibility and public support.

That said, the study also showed the need for creative space and recommended steps to take accomplish the goal, according to the staff report.

The Arts Commission is recommending the council approve the report and direct the City Manager to identify options to support implementation of the proposals by Artspace.

Village Entrance update

Photos by Mary Hurlbut

Village Entrance tractor

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Hard at work

Village Entrance Deere

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Clearing a pathway

Maintaining order

Photos by Mary Hurlbut

Maintaining order girl

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Hardworking Police Cadet on Saturday morning

Maintaining order traffic

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Thank heavens for the Police Cadets

LB Trophy Invitational 2019

Photos by Scott Brashier

LB Trophy track

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The Laguna Beach Trophy Invitational, which took place on Saturday and drew an estimated 5,000 spectators, started in 1937 so smaller high schools could participate in a track and field competition

LB Trophy high jump

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Presented by Asics

LB Trophy long jump

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Today the Laguna Beach Trophy Invitational accepts schools of all sizes to compete in this all-day event

More memorable photos from Saturday’s track meet by Scott Brashier below

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Dennis’ Tidbits


March 22, 2019

Super spring and super bloom 

Dennis 5Although the Vernal (Spring) Equinox and Autumnal Equinox occur on the 21st of March and the 21st of September, the twelve hours of sun time actually occur on or about March 16th and on or about September 25th or 26th of each year. Last Saturday, the 16th had a sunrise at 7:01 a.m. and sunset at 7:01 p.m. By the 21st, sunrise will occur at 6:57 a.m. and sunset will happen at 7:04 p.m.

After many weeks of frequent rain (much needed) and cold, sunny and warm weather has made a welcome comeback here in Southern California. For the first time in ages, the entire Pacific West Coast WAS under bright sunshine here on St. Patty’s Day and Palm Springs saw its very first 80-degree day of 2019. 

Even the Pacific Northwest got in on the warmth with places like Portland seeing their first 70-degree temps of the year. It’s been a long winter here in the West so people are savoring the warmth we thought would never show up again. Laguna Canyon is brimming with green not seen in years and the mustard is going off! 

With our local deserts getting generous moisture too, desert flowers are going to be nothing short of spectacular this spring. Suddenly a ten-mile long lake has come to life in of all places, Death Valley! It’s only a few inches deep, but it’s the first time in over a generation that this lake has come into existence as Death Valley, which only collects about three inches of rain annually. It has amassed nearly double that since December thanks to several atmospheric rivers that bring plentiful moisture because that rain source is coming from a different direction. Even Las Vegas, which averages only four inches a year, has doubled that since December as well.

On the 21st, fall begins on the other side of the equator, so the Roaring 40s storm machine comes to life. Just like the North Pacific storm belt in our hemisphere, the Roaring 40s crank out intense lows that travel from west to east. Unlike our hemisphere, where land masses stand in the way, the other hemisphere can pop out storms that can occasionally travel the entire globe and come full circle. 

It is these intense lows that are responsible for much of our south and southwest ground swells that travel as much as 7,000 miles and take over a week to reach our shores. One such low is going to send us our first Southern hemisphere swell of the new season this upcoming week with possible waves of four to six feet at premier Orange County south facing breaks. Stay tuned on that one.

Local ocean temps here in Orange County are at their chilliest in four years, running at 54-57 degrees.

And finally, fifty years ago on this date, I lost my Pop to alcohol when his liver cried no more. He was only 54. I still miss him dearly. 

I’m proud to say I’ve only been drunk once in my entire life and that was when I was about 17. I woke up the next day with my head in the toilet. Never drank again to this day! That’s probably why I’m still above ground with a very healthy liver to boot. 

Nuff said, ALOHA!

Global youth movement of climate strikes spurs on Student Climate Strike at Main Beach on Friday

Spurred on by the growing youth movement of climate strikes across the globe, a group of students staged a strike at Main Beach on Friday afternoon. Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish girl, has been striking every Friday for about 26 weeks now. Her message for urgent climate action is compelling, “Imagine what we could all do together, if you wanted to.”

Nazish Mir reports, “We had a much better turn out this time! I believe we had about 50 youth and adults. Anneliese, Thurston, and LBHS were represented. We also had some college students from Soka University in Aliso Viejo. There was a lovely young woman from Santa Cruz, visiting her grandmother who lives here in Laguna. There were some adults who also came out to support the youth.” 

While they cannot strike every Friday, a lot of people have reached out, so the kids are planning more strikes.

Global youth respect

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Submitted photo

LBHS student Charlie in middle

Laguna Beach families are working together to raise their voices and create more awareness locally. They are striking based on these facts:

--Last year was Earth’s 4th-warmest year on record, coming in behind 2016, the planet’s warmest recorded year, as well as 2015 and 2017, according to information released earlier this month by NOAA, NASA, and the U.K. Met Office.

Global youth grandmother

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Submitted photo

Local grandmother and granddaughter from Santa Cruz

--”Nine of the 10 warmest years on record since reliable data began in 1880 have occurred since 2005. At the same time, greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels – as well as deforestation and intensive agriculture – have skyrocketed to levels not seen in more than 800,000 years.” (Axios)

--“The impacts of long-term global warming are already being felt – in coastal flooding, heat waves, intense precipitation, and ecosystem change,” says Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA GISS.

Global youth help

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Submitted photo

Nils Dahle, Ha-Jin Attenborough, Ji-Dan Attenborough, Zen with the skimboard sign

--In August of last year, Scripps researchers logged the warmest sea-surface temperature at Scripps Pier since records began in August 1916. The record temp – 78.6°F – is the highest in 102 years of measurements. The entire ocean ecosystem is impacted by the warmer weather, and very relevant to us as a coastal community.

LBPD announces important Laguna Beach rideshare pickup locations

The City of Laguna Beach boasts a vibrant nightlife and arts community. The Laguna Beach Police Department encourages people to have a good time, but public safety remains a priority.

Officers Shar Hariri and Fred Yeilding, who are assigned to the Laguna Beach Police Department Business Liaison Unit, observed that Uber and Lyft drivers often stop on Coast Highway to pick up or drop off passengers. The drivers stopping in the roadway presents a safety concern for other motorists and pedestrians.

LBPD announces signsThe officers worked with Uber and Lyft to find a solution to this safety concern. The two companies were able to leverage their geolocation technology on their apps, which allows the companies to set specific pickup locations, and by doing so, move passenger pickup locations onto side streets with less traffic. The change has helped to increase awareness and provide safer rideshare pickup locations.

The designated pickup and recommended drop-off locations are located in the following areas: 200 Ocean Avenue, 200 Laguna Avenue, and 100 Brooks Street. 

The officers are working with city staff to develop specific signage identifying the pickup locations. They are also working with local businesses and encouraging them to inform their patrons about the safe pickup areas.

The Business Liaison Unit strives to find modern ways of improving public safety by using new technologies to adapt to changing environments. Laguna Beach was the second city on the west coast to have implemented this partnership with these rideshare companies. As we continue to move forward into the modern world, the Laguna Beach Police Department is continually seeking new ways to integrate creative solutions aimed at improving public safety.

For further information, contact Captain Jeff Calvert at (949) 497-0375 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Laguna Print Ad

Laguna’s hidden gem Hortense Miller Garden hosts open house on March 30

On Saturday, March 30 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Hortense Miller Garden will host an open house. This hidden gem features a 2.5-acre garden with over a dozen unique trails and a pristine Mid-Century Modern home built by Knowlton Fernald in 1958 on the slope of Boat Canyon. 

Tucked under towering Torrey Pines, planted from one-gallon saplings in 1959, there are over 600 plant species in the garden of which about 150 are California natives. The wondrous variety of plantings gives the garden color and texture during every season. 

Laguna's hidden outside

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Submitted photo

Garden tours will be offered during the free open house on March 30

The walls of glass of this home offer breathtaking ocean views. The original furnishings give the home a rare authenticity, fitting of a true Laguna artist. The Aviary Gallery features an exhibit of the original renderings of the home drawn by the architect in 1958. 

Continuous shuttle bus service and parking will be available from First Church of Christ Scientist at 635 High Dr starting at 10 a.m. The last bus departs for the garden at 3:20 p.m. There will be a free art workshop for children. Sack lunches are permitted and walking shoes are recommended. 

Lagunas hidden inside

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Submitted photo

The house offers breathtaking ocean views and original furnishings 

Garden tours will be offered every hour and books on Hortense Miller, container gardens, and garden art will be available for sale.

No reservations are necessary for the open house and admission is free. Donations are gratefully accepted. 

For more information, visit or call (949) 244-2010.

Must see, FOA Fresh Faces 2019 exhibit runs
through May 24 

Summer is just around the corner and the Festival of Arts is excited to announce its newest exhibit, Fresh Faces 2019. Presenting the works of the 23 newly juried Festival artists, the exhibit showcases a wide range of mediums including painting, sculpture, photography, mixed media and more. 

Fresh Faces 2019 runs through May 24 at the Festival of Arts Third Floor Gallery at Wells Fargo Bank. The opening artist reception was a big hit for art enthusiasts last Saturday, March 9.

“We’re welcoming a larger number of first year exhibitors than in recent years and their exceptional work, along with our longtime exhibitors, will help create one of the most exciting years the Festival has ever seen,” Festival of Arts Marketing Director Sharbie Higuchi said.

Must see FOA Carrie Zeller

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Submitted photo

Carrie Zeller is a new artist and is posing next to one of her pieces of work titled “Girl on Bus”

Fresh Faces 2019 showcases a fascinating look into the world of the innovative and fresh new artwork of 23 prestigious artists from Orange County. The artists and mediums being presented are Duncan Asper (Mixed Media), Echo Baker (Oils), Peggy Chang (Oils), Monica Edwards (Oils), Victor Fisher (Sculpture), Hugh Foster (Photography), Alice Gamez (Oils), JP Greenwood (Photography), Carol Heiman-Greene (Oils), Ricky Hill (Sculpture), Lyn Hiner (Acrylics), Baruch Kaufman (Jewelry), Lisa Kijak (Fiber Arts), Peter Levshin (Photography), Dana Lewis (Oils), Gemma Park (Jewelry), Bree Poort (Mixed Media), Janine Salzman (Mixed Media), Pegah Samaie (Oils), Christopher Paul Scardino (Mixed Media), Ken Sugimoto (Sculpture), Chifumi Uehara (Sculpture), and Carrie Zeller (Photography).

Must see FOA Group Photo

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Submitted photo

(L-R) Phyllis Fisher, Scott Albert, Dana Lewis, Pegah Samaie, Carol Heiman-Green, Shakiba Hashemi, Christopher Scardino, and Victor Fisher

 “It is so very rewarding to witness the new artists, docents, long time exhibiting artists, Festival Board members, and the general public enthusiastically involved in a variety of discussions, a testament to the camaraderie that can develop in the local art culture,” said Pat Sparkuhl, Art Collection Specialist/Curator for Festival of Arts.

These exhibitors were recently juried into the Festival of Arts by a panel of six knowledgeable artists and/or art experts which included Scott Albert, watercolorist; Cathy Cobb, Art Director for Automobile Club of Southern California - Texas Journey and New Mexico Journey magazines; Jordan Dimitrov, sculptor; Mark Jacobucci, painter (alternate); Sarah Jesse, Deputy Director for Orange County Museum of Art; and Evan Senn, Gallery Curator at Golden West College and Art/Art History Instructor at Cal State University Fullerton, Golden West College, and Laguna College of Art and Design.

Must see FOA onlookers

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Onlookers enjoying a first glance at the FOA’s new artists show Fresh Faces

Fresh Faces 2019 is on exhibit through May 24 is at the Festival of Arts Third Floor Gallery at Wells Fargo Bank located at 260 Ocean Ave. It is part of an ongoing series of shows that the Festival of Arts will be holding at Wells Fargo. The building is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Admission is free. 

The Festival of Arts is a nonprofit organization whose proceeds support the arts in and about Laguna Beach. For more information call (949) 494-1145 or visit

Mares’ tails in the sky

Mares tails clouds

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Photo by Carole Boller

These cirrus clouds occur at very high altitudes, at a temperature of about -50° to -40°C. They are commonly known as mares’ tails because of their likeness to horses’ tails.

Laguna Beach Democratic Club invites residents to meet next leader of the California Democratic Party

Laguna Beach Democratic Club invites residents to join together to meet and hear from the next leader of the California Democratic Party on Tuesday, March 26 at Aliso Viejo Country Club. The forum is from 7 - 9 p.m., with doors opening at 5:30 p.m. and a VIP reception from 6 - 7 p.m.

DemocrOC will present a debate, interview, and Q&A with CDP Chair candidates Kimberly Ellis and Daraka Larimore-Hall, moderated by Aliso Viejo Council member Tiffany Ackley.

The forum is preceded by a VIP Reception where guests can mingle with the candidates and elected officials in an intimate setting with refreshments (there is limited availability).

Forum tickets are $20. Seating is first come first serve at the event. Standing room only is allowed for a limited number of guests.

The VIP Reception is $100. Mingle with Kimberly Ellis, Daraka Larimore-Hall, and elected officials in an intimate setting from 6 - 7 p.m. before the candidate forum. Appetizers and refreshments will be served. A cash bar is available for your enjoyment. Includes one ticket to the candidate forum and priority seating.

Sponsorship opportunities are also available for $100 and include one ticket to the candidate forum, recognition on stage, and priority seating. The deadline for brochure printing is March 19, 2019. Tables will be provided for co-sponsors who wish to promote their organizations/causes.

The objective of the forum is to promote community engagement in the California Democratic Party. Laguna Beach Democratic Club encourages not only participation from the local Party and Dem clubs and delegates, but also activists and interested community members. It is an opportunity to encourage grassroots participation in the local and state Party.

By attending this event, you agree to allow LBDC the right to use your image and/or likeness for advertising and/or other promotional purposes. You also agree not to take pictures or videos where posted or announced as prohibited and agree that any permitted photos or videos will not be used for any commercial purposes.

Laguna Beach Democratic Club would like to thank all patrons for attending the event, and ask that all in attendance abide by all local, state, and federal laws and policies and guidelines set forth by the Old Ranch Country Club. LBDC also asks that you be courteous and respectful of all other patrons, moderators, and speakers at the event. Facility/event management reserves the right to deny entry or eject patrons for displaying inappropriate behavior (as determined by facility/event management) to other patrons or to speakers during panels, debates or other events during the course of the event. Should a patron be denied entry or ejected for the above reasons, they will not receive a refund for their tickets or be compensated in any way.

For tickets and more information, click here.

Aliso Viejo Country Club is located at 33 Santa Barbara Drive, Aliso Viejo.

Laguna Beach Books to host event with author David Gardner on April 14

On Sunday, April 14 at 4 p.m., Laguna Beach Books is pleased to welcome author David Gardner. David will be discussing his new book, Duncan’s Boots and the Field of Broken Dreams.

Sitting on an ice-bound plane in Munich with his Manchester United teammates on February 6, 1958, Duncan Edwards had the world at his feet. At the age of 21, he’d already played 151 matches for his club and had 18 caps for his country. Tragically, the player Sir Bobby Charlton called the best he’d ever seen never made it home from that trip, dying as one of the fabled Busby Babes.

Fast forward to modern day and a middle-aged British expat living in America who has lost his way in life but still gets a kick out of playing soccer with his friends. Back home in Dudley in the West Midlands for the funeral of his father, Jimmy Keen finds an ancient pair of boots in the attic that he is told once belonged to Duncan, the pride of Dudley and an old school teammate of his dad’s.

Laguna Beach soccer

Author David Gardner will discuss his new book at Laguna Beach Books on April 14

The find allows Jimmy a glimpse into the human side of his cold, distant father through his special relationship with the legendary footballer. Much later, back at home in California, Jimmy tries on the crumbling boots and wears them for his weekly pick-up game in Laguna Beach.

Suddenly he turns into a player capable of unbelievable skills. His extraordinary abilities propel the protagonist all the way to the Major League Soccer Cup Final in the US at the age of 47, but is his late blooming success down to finally fulfilling his potential...or is it just the boots?

The novel is about the enduring wonder of playing soccer, and also examines the issues we all face dealing with the demons in our past and remaining relevant as we grow older.

David Gardner is the London Evening Standard US Correspondent, an ex-Daily Mail Foreign Correspondent and Head of Content at,, and 

He has had several books published, including The Last of the Hitlers, about his search to find Adolf Hitler’s last living descendants in the United States; The Tom Hanks Enigma; and LEGENDS: Murder, Lies and Cover-Ups, which was published in the US by Skyhorse Publishing in May 2018. His first novel, The iCandidate, written with his wife Michelle, won a 2017 Independent Publisher Book award for national contemporary fiction. He is a regular player at the Field of Broken Dreams in Laguna Beach at age 58.

For more information, call (949) 494-4779 or visit

Laguna Beach Books is located at 1200 South Coast Hwy.

LBUMC presents “Messy Church” on March 24

“Build labyrinths and prepare to be ‘A-maze-D,” says Barbara Crowley, as she invites people of all ages to attend Messy Church at Laguna Beach United Methodist Church. The monthly event will be held between 4 and 6 p.m. on Sunday, March 24. 

Crowley continues, “Lent is a time for personal journeys. Where have you been? Where are you going? What signs and milestones have you recognized or overlooked? Do you need a compass?  Explore paths less traveled to Messy Church and experience joyful worship for all ages.”

LBUMC presents sign

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Courtesy of Facebook

The community is invited to LBUMC for “Messy Church” on Sunday

Messy Church welcomes individuals and families who are not comfortable in a conventional church setting. In addition to the “a-maze-ing” activities, a meal will be served. 

A RSVP is appreciated, but not required. To RSVP or for more information, contact the church at (949) 499-3088 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

LBUMC is located at 21632 Wesley Dr, up the hill from Gelson’s Shopping Center.

Locals invited to participate in annual low-cost spay/neuter program throughout April

Residents of Laguna Beach and Laguna Woods can purchase low-cost vouchers to have their dog or cat spayed or neutered at three veterinary hospitals located in Laguna Beach from April 1 to April 30. 

Spaying or neutering your pet has numerous health benefits for the animal and is essential in controlling pet overpopulation. 

The voucher cost is $15 to $40 for neuters and $25 to $75 for spays. The cost is based on the weight of the pet. A veterinarian evaluates each pet, and in the event your pet requires additional medical attention, you will be responsible for additional costs. 

Locals invited dogs

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Photo by Dianne Russell

Three Laguna Beach Veterinary Hospitals will offer vouchers to purchase through March 31

Protecting your pets (PUP) will cover the majority of the costs to spay or neuter your pet during this event. 

Residents can purchase the low-cost spay/neuter vouchers at the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter until March 31, 2019. 

There is a maximum of two vouchers per household. 

Participating vets are: Dr. Gershon Alaluf, Canyon Animal Hospital; Dr. James Levin, Laguna Beach Animal Hospital; and Dr. Randall Bondurant, Laguna Beach Veterinary Medical Center. 

For additional information, residents may contact the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter at (949) 497-3552.

Laguna Craft Guild presents local art show on Sunday at Main Beach

On Sunday, March 24, from 9 a.m. - sundown, the Laguna Craft Guild will hold an art show at Main Beach featuring local artists. There are always many treasures to be found at the show, you won’t want to miss it.

Laguna Craft umbrella

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

Stroll along Main Beach while visiting local artists 

Laguna Craft Guild is a small group of local Laguna Beach artists that sell their handmade goods on the cobblestones at Main Beach one to two times a month. Many of them are also Sawdust Festival artists.

The show is very special and a fun way to spend a Sunday strolling along the boardwalk with friends, family, and pets while gazing at the ocean. The art show is kind of like looking for that perfect seashell along the shoreline. 

For more information, visit or follow on Instagram at @lagunacraftguild.

South Laguna Community Garden Park hosts Laguna County Fair on Saturday

The community is invited to take part in the upcoming festive County Fair at South Laguna Community Garden Park on Saturday, March 23 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

In among the rain-nourished garden beds, local crafts people will offer their unique handcrafted art. Adding to the fun will be raffled prizes donated by Laguna businesses and live music from the Garden Band. 

South Laguna jewelry

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Submitted photo

Handmade jewelry at last year’s fair

All funds raised will support the acquisition and operation of the Garden Park. Donations of non-perishable food for the Laguna Beach Food Pantry are welcome. 

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

The garden is located at 31610 Coast Hwy, on the corner of Coast Highway and Eagle Rock Way.

Explore Laguna Art Museum’s family friendly “Open Studio” event this Saturday

Open Studio at Laguna Art Museum is free with museum admission and held on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Families are invited to create artwork inspired by the exhibitions on view and collaborate with the community and each other by adding on to evolving art installations. Everyone is encouraged to experiment and create.

Explore Laguna paint

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Submitted photo

Families are invited to create artwork on Saturdays at LAM

For more information, email Caitlin Reller or call (949) 494-8971 x221.

The studio will be closed on Saturday, April 27, for Imagination Celebration.

Laguna Art Museum is located at 307 Cliff Dr.

Laguna Beach Library presents author Gregory Benford on March 27

On Wednesday, March 27 at 5:30 p.m., the Laguna Beach Library invites the community to an author talk featuring bestselling author Gregory Benford, who will be discussing his book Rewrite: Loops in the Timescape. 

In this sequel to Benford’s award-winning bestseller Timescape, a professor learns he can travel back in time to when he was sixteen and becomes a Hollywood screenwriter with great success.

Laguna Beach green

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Submitted photo

Bestselling author Gregory Benford 

Gregory Benford is a local Nebula Award-winning science fiction writer and astrophysicist who is on the faculty of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of California, Irvine. 

For more information, call (949) 497-1733. 

The Laguna Beach Library is located at 363 Glenneyre St.

Enjoy great vibes with Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook at Laguna Playhouse, only six shows

Laguna Playhouse presents an unforgettable evening of music from one of the greatest songwriters of this generation, Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook. Tapestry will perform six performances only, Wednesday, April 17, Thursday, April 18, and Friday, April 19 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, April 20 at 2 and 7:30 p.m.; and a Special Easter Show on Sunday, April 21 at 3 p.m. 

Be transported back to the sound and vibe of a 1970s concert experience with Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook, North America’s premier musical tribute to Carole King. Suzanne O Davis gives an energetic and heartfelt performance along with the Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook band and takes audiences on a journey into those great recordings. 

Playhouse Tapestry

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Submitted photo

Don’t miss “Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook,” opening April 17 

This show not only performs songs from the record-breaking, Grammy winning album of the same name, but also King’s follow-up hits that continued throughout the free-spirited 70s. 

Impeccable attention to detail is taken in recreating a respectful and accurate musical presentation of King’s piano vocals, just as they were. Tapestry, The Carole King Songbook brings back a beautiful flood of music memories with every song an unforgettable hit for audiences to experience.

Tickets range from $56 to $71 and can be purchased online at or by calling (949) 497-ARTS (2787). Group discounts are available by calling (949) 497-2787 ext. 229.

Laguna Playhouse is located at 606 Laguna Canyon Rd.

Saint Catherine of Siena Parish School presents 61st anniversary “Havana Nights Gala” on March 29

On Friday, March 29 at 6 p.m., St. Catherine of Siena Parish School invites the community to attend its 61st anniversary gala. The evening will include a live and silent auction, light fare, live music, and other fun entertainment throughout the night.

The auction will feature an Angels “Once In A Lifetime VIP Experience” for the May 25th Angels vs. Texans Game. The prize includes four front row tickets at the Angels Dugout, with the attending child getting to deliver the game balls to the pitcher’s mound, throw out the “First Pitch”, kick off the game with “Play Ball”, be the honorary “Bat Kid” for the game, and “steal and keep third base”.

Saint Catherine Angels

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A previous auction winner enjoying the game and perks with her family

To watch the video for more information, click here.

Gala tickets are $150 per individual or $250 per couple. You can also sponsor a teacher to attend the gala and show how much you appreciate them as well!

 Donations are still being accepted from local businesses for the live and silent auction through Friday, March 15. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

Saint Catherine group

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Submitted photo

Tickets to the gala will raise funds for the school

To purchase your tickets or sponsor a table, visit 

Saint Catherine of Siena Parish School is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Catholic elementary (TK-8) school. The school offers a faith-based high school preparatory curriculum in a unique small school environment.

Saint Catherine of Siena Parish School is located at 30516 S. Coast Hwy.

Board of Supervisors approves countywide suicide prevention initiative

The Orange County Board of Supervisors announced that it has committed $600,000 of Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) Prevention and Early Intervention (PEI) monies for the creation of a countywide suicide prevention program. 

This funding will be given to MindOC, the fiscal entity of Be Well Orange County, an initiative bringing together public, private, academic, and faith-based organizations, as well as others, to create a coordinated system of mental healthcare and support for all Orange County residents.

“As Chairwoman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors, it is my duty and responsibility to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of all Orange County residents. My heart goes out to families who feel they don’t have resources to help their loved ones. I want to let our constituents know that they are not alone and there is hope,” said Chairwoman Lisa Bartlett, Fifth District Supervisor.

In recent years, suicide rates and mental health related hospitalizations have increased throughout Orange County. The County’s per-capita rate of suicide increased 45 percent between the three-year periods of 1999 to 2001 and 2011 to 2013. This compares to an average increase of 22 percent nationwide during the same time frame, and was the largest increase in any metropolitan county in the U.S. 

“Addressing mental health in our county has never been more important than right now. We need to expand our mental health services and make our community aware that there is help, and where there is help, there is hope,” said Supervisor Andrew Do, First District.

During fiscal year 2018/19, the Orange County MHSA Steering Committee supported the recommendation to expand school-based suicide prevention campaigns and activities for students in grades K-12, as well as for transitional-age youth in higher educational and other settings. The Committee also supported several other recommendations targeting underserved individuals throughout the life span, including strategies to increase timely access to services and to promote recovery and resilience, thereby preventing suicide.

“It is my hope that MindOC helps make a greater difference in the lives of our residents. There are three words to remember: Every life matters,” said Supervisor Doug Chaffee, Fourth District.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for children and youth between the ages of 10 and 24. In Orange County, teen suicides averaged 13.3 deaths per year over the past 10-year period. Suicide is a leading cause of non-natural death for youth and teenagers between the ages of 10 and 19 years old. In Orange County, suicides accounted for 29 percent of non-natural deaths, making it the second leading cause of non-natural death behind motor vehicle collisions.  This is higher than the statewide average in California, in which 22 percent of deaths among teens were due to suicides.

For more information about suicide prevention, visit OC Health Care Agency at,

Meet Pet of the Week Jessie

Jessie is currently taking the title of Pet of the Week. He is a six-year-old short orange haired tabby who is neutered. He is very shy and quiet since his senior owner recently passed away. Therefore, Jesse will do best in a quiet home or environment. Although, once he gets to know you, he opens up greatly. In addition, Jesse will love to lie in your lap all day long once he feels comfortable. Nancy Goodwin, shelter director, hopes to see Jesse adopted as soon as possible. 

Pet of the Week Jesse

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Submitted photo

Jesse is a great lap cat once he gets to know you

The Laguna Beach Animal Shelter adoption procedures are designed to make sure that both the potential family and the animal adopted are in the very best situation possible. Due to their approach to adoption, the shelter’s return rate is five percent as compared to the national return rate of 50 percent.

The LB Animal Shelter is located at 20612 Laguna Canyon Rd. For information on adoption procedures, call (949) 497-3552 or go to

Police Beat Primer

Compiled by Suzie Harrison

Police Beat derives from information in the daily police and arrest logs published on the City of Laguna Beach’s website and required under CA Government Code Section 6254 (f). Additional information is obtained through communication with the Laguna Beach Police Department’s Public Information Officer.

Information in the logs is deemed reliable and Stu News Laguna is not responsible for any mistakes made available as public record by the Laguna Beach Police Department.

Any person arrested is innocent until found guilty in a court of law.

Incident Reports

Saturday, March 16

Cleo St | 100 Block | DUI

11:24 p.m. A 30-year-old San Clemente man was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Bail was set at $2,500.

Glenneyre St & Pearl St | Information Only

4:57 p.m. According to the RP, a skateboarder ran into their vehicle the day prior after the RP tried to swerve, because he was skateboarding aggressively.

Cliff Drive | 300 Block | Warrant, Possession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia

11:18 a.m. Shane Christopher Hardin, 43, Laguna Beach, was arrested on an undisclosed warrant (bail was set at $10,000) and for possession of controlled substance paraphernalia (bail was set at $500). 

N Coast Hwy | 100 Block | Found Property

10:16 a.m. LBPD received a report in reference to found property. According to police records, the RP found a pipe inside the bathrooms with residue inside. The RP was advised to it throw away.

Broadway St | 200 Block | Possession of a Controlled Substance, Possession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia

8:26 a.m. Kelly Russlee Smith, 35, Laguna Beach, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance (bail was set at $500) and for possession of controlled substance paraphernalia (bail was set at $500). 

S Coast Hwy | 300 Block | Robbery and Battery

12:14 a.m. Zachary Steven Wheeler, 27, Laguna Beach, was arrested for felony robbery (bail was set at $2,500) and for battery (bail was set at $1,500). 

Friday, March 15

S Coast Hwy | 30800 Block | DUI with 1 prior

10:04 p.m. John Paul Hunt, 29, Trabuco Canyon, was arrested on suspicion of DUI with one prior. Bail was set at $10,000.

Broadway St | 200 Block | Possession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia, Destroying/Concealing Evidence, False Identification, Warrants

7:21 p.m. Darren Lawrence Gallagher, 50, Costa Mesa, was arrested for possession of controlled substance paraphernalia (bail was set at $500), destroying/concealing evidence (bail was set at $500), providing false identification to a specific peace officers (bail was set at $2,500), and warrants for possession of controlled substance paraphernalia (bail was set at $10,000) and sleeping outdoors (bail was set at $2,500).

Morningside Drive | 1500 Block | Check On

3:15 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to orange cones placed in front of a residence. The cones were removed from the roadway.

El Paseo | 300 Block | Warrant, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Possession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia

2:08 p.m. Michael Fiscina, 51, Irvine, was arrested on an undisclosed warrant (bail was set at $10,000), possession of a controlled substance without a prescription (bail was set at $500), and possession of controlled substance paraphernalia (bail was set at $500). 

Glenneyre St | 800 Block | DUI with 1 prior

11:28 a.m. William Aroldo Goody Escobar, 36, Santa Ana, was arrested on suspicion of DUI with one prior. Bail was set at $10,000.

N Coast Hwy & Broadway St | Warrant

1:20 a.m. Tam Hoang Le, 40, Baldwin Park, was arrested on an undisclosed warrant. Bail was set at $30,000.

Laguna Canyon Road | 600 Block | DUI

12:41 a.m. A 40-year-old Laguna Beach woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Bail was set at $2,500.

S Coast Hwy | 30600 Block | Warrants

12:25 a.m. Raul Olivares Garcia, 25, Santa Ana, was arrested on three warrants, for driving with a suspended license, driving without a valid license (bail was set at $40,000), and on an undisclosed warrant (bail was set at $100). 

Thursday, March 14

S Coast Hwy | 100 Block | Check On

7:36 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to someone releasing approximately six Chinese lanterns with an open flame into the air.

Morningside Drive | 1500 Block | Check On

6:20 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to orange cones at a residence. LBPD went to the location and the cones were removed.

N Coast Hwy & Emerald Bay Drive | Patrol Check

8:36 a.m. LBPD received a report in reference to an alleged incident involving an aggressive driver. According to the RP, the driver was exiting El Morro Elementary School and turning left toward town when they flipped the RP off after being cut off. The car was described as a white compact vehicle with an Uber sticker in the front side of the vehicle.

S Coast Hwy | 31100 Block | Card Fraud, Identity Theft, Burglary

3:08 a.m. Carl Douglas Whaley, 29, Artesia, was arrested for credit card fraud (bail was set at $500), identity theft (bail was set at $500) and burglary (bail was set at $20,000). 

Laguna Canyon Road | 600 Block | DUI

12:41 a.m. A 21-year-old Diamond Bar man was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Bail was set at $2,500.

Wednesday, March 13

Holly St | 400 Block | Soliciting

6:20 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to an unwanted solicitor. According to police records, the subject came to the RP’s door attempting to sell something.

Anita St & Wilson St | Soliciting

3:16 p.m. LBPD received a report regarding unwanted solicitors. According to police records, the RP stated that there was a group of males going door-to-door asking for money. According to police records, LBPD had received multiple calls regarding the same subjects over the last couple of days. The caller stated that a vehicle drops them off.

Nyes Place | 400 Block | Disturbance

3:13 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to loud music. According to police records, the RP stated that loud music was coming from the construction site at the location.

Catalina St | 2000 Block | Check On

3:01 p.m. LBPD received a report in reference to orange cones at a residence.

S Coast Hwy | 100 Block | DUI

1:24 a.m. A 38-year-old Aliso Viejo man was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Bail was set at $2,500.