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Volume 9, Issue 50  |  June 21, 2024



Morphing the Resort at Pelican Hill to the Marriott brand is a win all the way around

The big news that the fabled Resort at Pelican Hill will be run by Marriott as a St. Regis starting July 1 has been some of the buzziest news not only here in town but across the tourism industry. Columnist Gary Sherwin fills us in on this exciting development…

They’re hitting the beach!

On Tuesday, June 18, the Newport Beach Lifeguard Department began their 40th year of the Junior Lifeguard Program, with 1,450 participants ranging in age from 9-15 years old enrolled in the program. Opening day attended by Junior Guard families, city staff and a throng of community members was “epic”…


Maddie Musselman, Kaleigh Gilchrist make Team USA water polo roster for Summer Olympic Games

Maddie Musselman and Kaleigh Gilchirst, both Newport Beach natives, have officially qualified to represent Team USA as part of the USA Water Polo team at the Olympic Games Paris 2024. They will make Newport proud…

Arrest made in death of Newport Beach man caused by traffic collision

Through NBPD traffic division’s extensive investigation alongside the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, it has been determined that the driver Andrew Awad, 35, of Costa Mesa, had engaged in a street race prior to the collision on Sept. 30, 2023…

Morphing the Resort at Pelican Hill to the Marriott brand is a win all the way around


The big news that the fabled Resort at Pelican Hill will be run by Marriott as a St. Regis starting July 1 has been some of the buzziest news not only here in town but across the tourism industry. I received dozens of calls and inquiries from colleagues around the country asking about it.

While the change seems surprising to some, it really wasn’t to me, and here’s why.

The pandemic, which was convulsive to just about everyone, was especially disruptive to the tourism industry, which was ground zero for economic dislocation. No one escaped unscathed.

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Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

Because of that, the Irvine Company, which owns Pelican, as well as the former Fashion Island Hotel and Hotel Irvine, seriously reevaluated their business models in the hotel space. Fashion Island Hotel closed at the start of COVID as well as Hotel Irvine. Pelican Hill stayed open, but at slightly reduced capacity.

Internally, there was much discussion as to what to do with all three properties, and rumors were rampant, especially about Fashion Island Hotel and whether it would turn into condos or be sold. Of course, we now know that they did a deal with locally owned Eagle Four Partners, which purchased the building and reimagined it as the new Pendry Newport Beach that opened last September.

Hotel Irvine was sold to the Hyatt Corporation and, after a significant renovation, opened as the Hyatt Regency Irvine.

That left Pelican Hill, which is the jewel in Irvine Company Chairman Donald Bren’s crown. He spent years not only getting approvals to build the 504-acre luxury property but also actively selecting the materials and décor that ultimately made it an uber-luxurious destination resort.

While there were rumors of a sale, I never thought he would part with it since it was a particularly significant passion project for him. But that didn’t mean Bren would have to operate it.

After an extensive vetting process with several luxury hotel brands, the decision to work with Marriott seemed an obvious one. Marriott is the largest hotel operator in the world, with 31 different brands. They already operate three properties in town, including Lido House Hotel, Newport Beach Bayview and VEA Newport Beach, which is also owned by Eagle Four Partners.

More importantly, affiliating with Marriott connects the formerly independent Pelican with Bonvoy rewards. This program entitles you to free nights and other upgrades if you visit enough times a year at any Marriott hotel. This program has huge value for hotels as it incentivizes many people to stay at a property so they can rack up points. Meeting planners also often choose hotels based on reward programs, especially Bonvoy.

But here is what is most noteworthy about this deal: The Irvine Company made this arrangement with Marriott on the condition that it take care of its existing employees.

Often, when new management takes over, many employees are laid off, and staff is replaced with people of the operating company’s choosing. Not so in this case. What is most extraordinary is that the Irvine Company mandated that all employees be guaranteed a two-year deal at their existing salaries and benefits.

But what really sweetened the deal is that all existing Pelican employees are absorbed into the Marriott system as tenured staff. That means if you worked at Pelican for 10 years, you are now considered a 10-year Marriott employee. That’s huge since it entitles you to eventually get stock options and retirement perks like free hotel rooms for life. It’s a massive concession for Marriott and one you must applaud the Irvine Company for insisting upon. They really protected their team and showed loyalty in this process which could have easily gone the other way.

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Junior Lifeguard program kicked off June 18 at their new headquarters

On Tuesday, June 18, the Newport Beach Lifeguard Department began their 40th year of the Junior Lifeguard Program, with 1,450 participants ranging in age from 9-15 years old enrolled in the program this year in both the morning (9 a.m.) and afternoon (1 p.m.) sessions. The program is located on the south side of the Balboa Pier. This is the first year of the program at the new Junior Lifeguard Building located at 901 E. Ocean Front, Newport Beach.

The event was heavily attended by Junior Guard families and city staff. Guest speakers Included Mayor Will O’Neill, Councilmember Erik Weigand and Lifeguard Captain Gary Conwell.

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Photos courtesy of NBFD

Chief Lifeguard Brian O’Rourke addresses the Junior Lifeguards on Opening Day

According to Chief Lifeguard Brian O’Rourke said, “The atmosphere of opening day was fun and full of energy and excitement!” The Junior Guard were anxiously awaiting to meet their Newport Beach Ocean Lifeguard Instructors and get started on their 7-week epic summer journey.

“Our Newport Beach Ocean Lifeguards who are the Junior Guard Instructors are the ones who work hard in making this program a huge success,” said Chief O’Rourke. “They instill the knowledge, skill, experience and leadership values to safely enjoy our beaches. This is the Junior Guards and their family’s home and backyard. The beach is a healthy environment, but the ocean demands respect, and that is what we get out of this amazing program.

“The Newport Beach Junior Lifeguard Program is this community, and it is super epic!”

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Newport Beach Mayor Will O’Neill, Mayor Pro Tem Joe Stapleton and Councilmembers Erik Weigand and Lauren Kleiman join Newport Beach Fire Chief Jeff Boyles, Chief Lifeguard Brian O’Rourke and firefighter personnel on Opening Day

The Junior Lifeguard Program teaches participants beach and ocean awareness in an effort to increase their overall ocean skills and experience. The program content consists of ocean safety, physical and personal development, emergency response skills and competition. The program also emphasizes that junior lifeguards: 1. Respect each other, their community and themselves; 2. Represent their community, the City of Newport Beach and the Newport Beach Lifeguards in a positive way and 3. Exhibit responsibility for their actions and set a good example for others.

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Reenie Boyer (Jr. Lifeguard founder) and Mayor Will O’Neill (center left and right) are joined by City Councilmembers Erik Weigand and Robyn Grant, Newport Beach Fire Chief Jeff Boyles, Chief Lifeguard Brian O’Rourke and firefighter personnel on Opening Day

For further information on the Newport Beach Junior Lifeguard Program, call 949.644.3170, or email, or visit You can also follow the program them on Facebook at Newport Beach Junior Lifeguard Program or on Instagram @NBJG.

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Newport Beach Police Foundation Golf Classic – a day of friendly competition, food and fun…all for a great cause

The Newport Beach Police Foundation (NBPF) Golf Classic was held on June 17 at the Newport Beach Country Club. Local area supporters of the Newport Beach Police Department were joined by Police Chief Joe Cartwright, police officers and city officials, along with sponsors for a beautiful day of golf, good food and fun.

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Photos by Justin Daniels

Newport Beach Police Chief Joe Cartwright (third from left) with some of the NBPF board members – (L-R): Jen McDonald, Ruth Kobayashi, Karen Yelsey, Stephanie Simpson, Lorie Swatsek and Dan Hess

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 (L-R): Officer Mark Hamilton, Mayor Pro Tem Joe Stapleton, Police Chief Joe Cartwright, Fire Chief Jeff Boyles and Police Association President Joe De Julio

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Newport Beach Police Department Color Guard

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Golfers heading out to the course

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Congratulations to the winning team – XComp Tires with a score of 57 (L-R): Blake Wilkey, Ben Shur, Dan Cohen and Jeff Kreitzman. The winners took home inflatable paddle boards donated by Kap7.

Tournament Co-chairs Lorie Swatsek and Dan Hess announced that this was the most successful event in the foundation’s history.

According to Swatsek, “Our community has deep respect for our amazing police department, and they showed it today. We are so fortunate to have the protection of the NBPD and are thrilled to host such a fun event where our citizens can show their appreciation.”

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The Sterling BMW, hole-in-one contest hole at picturesque Newport Beach Country Club

Funds raised from this event will be directed toward initiatives including a peer support dog, scholarships for NBPD children, support of the police mounted unit, holiday meals for on-duty officers, emergency assistance for NBPD families and other impactful programs.

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Ben Maggard, Opportunity Drawing winner

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Several of the NBPF board members – (L-R): Jock Marlow, Matt Wiley, Jen McDonald, Lorie Swatsek, Dan Hess, Karen Yelsey, Ruth Kobayashi and Stephanie Simpson. Swatsek and Hess were the tournament co-chairs.

The Newport Beach Police Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit run by 12 community volunteer board members who work with the Police Chief and the Police Association. For anyone interested in donating to this foundation or learning more about the organization, visit the website at

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Historical Society to debut new museum next week in Fun Zone

Representatives for the Newport Beach Historical Society (NBHS) have announced plans for the grand opening of their new museum which will be located at the iconic Balboa Fun Zone. The grand opening event will take place on Friday, June 28 starting at 5 p.m., with a ribbon-cutting ceremony scheduled for 6 p.m.

The Historical Society, in partnership with the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, will feature a DJ, sweet treats and light refreshments, along with a cash bar to celebrate the occasion.

The new museum will offer visitors a journey through Newport Beach’s rich history, showcasing a diverse array of historical memorabilia and artifacts. From its origins as a coastal gem to its evolution into a vast and vibrant community, the Newport Beach Historical Society’s museum promises to be an educational and entertaining experience for all ages.

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Courtesy of Newport Beach Historical Society

Historical artifacts and memorabilia from days gone by to be exhibited throughout the new museum

“We are beyond honored to call the Balboa Fun Zone our new home,” said Bernie Svalstad, president of the Newport Beach Historical Society. “This fresh space is a modern twist on our rich local history. Our board members have been working hard over the last few months to bring this museum to life and we are so very proud of it. We can’t wait to officially open the doors to the community.”

The grand opening event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact the Newport Beach Historical Society at

The Newport Beach Historical Society was formed by Bill Grundy in 1967, later led by his son Gordon Grundy. It was incorporated as a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation in December 2014.

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NBPD lieutenant receives city’s Dorothy Palen Employee of the Year Award

This week, Newport Beach Police Lieutenant Gary Clemente was awarded the 2024 Dorothy Palen Employee of the Year Award for the City of Newport Beach.

According to the NBPD, “Lieutenant Clemente’s dedication and hard work have made a significant impact on (the) department and community. His unwavering commitment to excellence sets a standard for all. Congratulations, Lt. Clemente, on this well-deserved recognition!”

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Courtesy of NBPB

Fellow NBPD officers, including Chief Joe Cartwright, surround Lieutenant Gary Clemente (center) as he displays the Dorothy Palen Employee of the Year Award

The award is named after former Newport Beach City employee Dorothy Louise Palen, whose 47-year career saw her thrive in the city’s finance department.

Palen retired from the city in 1993. The award recognizes excellence in the job exemplifying the characteristics of Palen – Cooperation, Dependability, Integrity and Judgment.

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American Legion Post 291 Newport Harbor to hold July 4th Weekend Celebration with exciting festivities planned

American Legion Post 291, a stalwart pillar of community service and support for veterans in Newport Beach and surrounding areas, has announced their centennial celebration in honor of 100 years of unwavering dedication to enriching the lives of local veterans.

Established on April 24, 1924, American Legion Post 291 has stood as a beacon of camaraderie, advocacy for veterans’ rights and provision of essential resources to those who have bravely served our nation. Over the past century, the Post has played a vital role in fostering a sense of belonging among veterans, advocating tirelessly for their rights at all levels of government, and raising awareness about the unique challenges those have served.

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Photos courtesy of American Legion Post 291/ALYC

“Fairwind,” skippered by Tim Bercovitz, won for Best Wooden Classic in a previous Old Glory Boat Parade

This monumental milestone will be celebrated over the July 4th holiday weekend, from July 4-6, with a diverse range of activities and events for the community to participate in.

Schedule of Events:

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Young Guns, an acclaimed international country rock band, are the headliners

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M Street, a high-energy cover/dance will be playing your favorite tunes from the ‘60s to current numbers

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The Beat 5 will deliver the revered music of the Fab Four

July 4th: Pancakes/Bands and Boat Parade

The festivities kick off on Thursday, July 4th, with various offerings open to the public. From 7:30-11 a.m., attendees can enjoy a hearty Pancake Breakfast featuring pancakes, sausage, bacon, hashbrowns, toast, coffee, orange juice and a refreshing Mimosa for $12. Throughout the day, there will be live music performances from renowned bands, including M Street, The Beat 5 and headliner Young Guns, an acclaimed international country rock band.

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Best Dinghy award went to “T/T Tomasndrus Too!” owned by Tom Mallard at a previous Old Glory Boat Parade

The Old Glory Boat Parade with Mayor Will O’Neill as Grand Marshal aboard Valor will begin at 1 p.m. with the theme, “Stars, Stripes and Sails.” A silent auction will feature various items, including sports, Hollywood, celebrity memorabilia, local and international travel experiences, limited-edition art and fashion jewelry. Food and drink prices have been adjusted to $5 for 2 tacos, $5 for 2 hot dogs, $5 for a hamburger and $5 for beer and wine. Boaters are encouraged to participate in the parade.

July 5th: Family Day and Gala

On Friday, July 5th, the celebration continues with a Family Day from 11 a.m.-4 p.m., featuring live entertainment and a variety of family-friendly activities.

In the evening, the American Legion Post 291 Gala, a black-tie event, will take place from 5-10 p.m. Invited guests, including local and state government officials, will deliver proclamations and resolutions, and a Time Capsule ceremony and a post-history presentation video will be showcased. RSVP for the Gala by calling 949.673.5070, ext. 1100.

July 6th: Food, Music and Auction

The celebration concludes on Saturday, July 6th with a day filled with live music, delicious food and a continuation of the silent auction. From 7-11 a.m., attendees can enjoy breakfast for $10, and then from 12-8 p.m., food and drink prices will be adjusted to $5 for 2 tacos, $5 for 2 hot dogs, $5 for a hamburger, and $5 for beer and wine. A silent auction will feature various items, including sports, Hollywood, celebrity memorabilia, local and international travel experiences, limited edition art and fashion jewelry.

Throughout the celebration, commemorative items such as T-shirts, cups and posters will be available for purchase, allowing attendees to take home a piece of this historic event.

For more information about American Legion Post 291 and their centennial celebration, including event details and programs, visit

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Newport Beach Sister City delegation spreads international joy

As part of the 40th sister city anniversary celebration between Newport Beach and Okazaki, Japan, a delegation of five students and two chaperones from Newport Beach traveled Monday, June 17 to Japan as part of the Wendell Fish Exchange Program, sponsored by the Newport Beach Sister City Association and the Newport Balboa Rotary Club.

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Courtesy of NB Sister Cities

The delegation standing next to the Friendship Statue (a gift from Okazaki, Japan) before heading off to Japan – (L-R): Baylor Boring, chaperone; Skylar Foster; Adrianna Bezrukov; Matt Jones, chaperone; Bentley Mott; Charlie Hilgeman and Jadyn Yankauskas

The delegation will visit Tokyo and then travel the bullet train to Okazaki, where the students will be welcomed by Mayor Nakane, attend school and live with a Japanese family. In turn, the Japanese
delegation will visit Newport Beach in late July and be hosted by the families of the Newport Beach delegation.

The beautiful stone friendship statue which resides at the Crean Mariners Library Branch was a gift to Newport Beach from Okazaki. The larger friendship statue which sits in front of the Central Library was also a gift from the city of Okazaki. Okazaki is known for its beautiful stone and stone carvers.

For more information on the Newport Beach Sister City Association, go here.

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Council to consider commission, committee appointments, fee collection through tax roll, art donation, public safety helicopter services agreement


The Newport Beach City Council will hear a variety of items at their meeting next week.

At the Tuesday (June 25) meeting, council will make a number of appointments to various city commissions and committees; collection of certain sewer and recycling fees and charges through the property tax roll; donation of a mixed media piece of artwork for placement in the central library; contract for helicopter services and an inter-agency instructional services agreement.

During current business, council will consider a number of applicants for open seats on various city commissions, committees and boards.

Per city policy, a council ad hoc committee interviewed applications and made nomination recommendations (with the exception of the Civil Service Board which, pursuant to city charter, were nominated by the police and fire associations). Some nominees applied for more than one group.

On the Board of Library Trustees, Meghan Murray and Jenny Williams have both applied for the single vacant seat.

The city received only one application, from Kenneth Kasdan, for the Building and Fire Code Board of Appeals, which has two open spots.

There are also two vacancies on the City Arts Commission and the council will choose between four applicants: Shireen Amin, David Anastos, Heather Ignatin and Vanessa Moore.

Police and fire associations provided five nominees for the two seats available on the Civil Service Board: Incumbents Howard Herzog and Brian Moore; as well as Matthew Parisi, Zoë Tapie and Amy Waunch.

Councilmembers will consider three nominees for the one open seat on the Harbor Commission: Kevin Kramer, John (Jock) Marlo III and Gary Williams (incumbent).

Parks, Beaches & Recreation Commission also has one vacant spot, with the applicants Robin MacGillivray, Drew Teicheira and Amy Waunch.

The Planning Commission has two vacancies and four nominees: Thomas Downes, Curtis Ellmore (incumbent), Jonathan Langford (incumbent) and Ekta Naik.

Earlier on Tuesday, during the only public hearing of the night, council will consider the collection of certain sewer and recycling fees and charges through the property tax roll.

The city provides water, sewer and recycling to most residents and businesses in Newport Beach. However, certain areas of the city are provided one or more of these services by other surrounding cities or special districts. According to the staff report, there are approximately 5,600 sewer and/or recycling customer accounts that do not currently receive a water bill from the City of Newport Beach. State code allows local agencies to collect certain annual fees and charges, including sewer and recycling fees, through the property tax roll.

“Enrolling these types of charges on the property tax roll is a common practice, particularly in instances where a customer is not receiving water service from the billing agency,” the report reads. “Because these customers do not receive a utility service from the city that can be disconnected for nonpayment, the collection rate can be significantly increased by collecting these fees on the property tax roll. Such charges are billed as part of the normal property tax billing process as an add-on charge.”

In 2022, Newport Beach began collecting certain sewer and recycling fees through the Orange County tax roll for these accounts. To ensure the city continues to receive timely payment for services rendered, staff proposes to again place these fees on the county tax roll for fiscal year 2024-25.

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Art by Pierce Meehan/Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Council will consider donation of the mixed media artwork “Indivisible” by Pierce Meehan from the Newport Beach Sister City Association

Earlier in Tuesday’s meeting, on the consent calendar (items considered routine and usually voted in one motion without discussion unless a councilmember pulls the item), council will consider donation of the artwork Indivisible to the City of Newport Beach.

If approved, the action will accept the donation from the Newport Beach Sister City Association into the city art inventory, and approve the placement of the piece in Central Library.

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Newport Beach Art Exhibition and Phase IX Sculpture Dedication Ceremony and Celebration scheduled for June 29

The Newport Beach Art Exhibition and Phase IX Sculpture Dedication Ceremony and Celebration is scheduled for Saturday, June 29 from 1-6 p.m.

Photos courtesy of Newport Beach Cultural Arts

“Les Bouquinistes” by artist Mariette Artine is among the artworks on display at the Arts Exhibition

“Sunset Dahlias” by artist Natalie Kornicks is among the artworks on display at the Arts Exhibition

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“Millefolium” by artist Catherine Daley is among the sculptures in Phase IX at Civic Center Park

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“Duality” by artist Giuseppe Palumbo is among the sculptures in Phase IX at Civic Center Park

Come mingle with the artists, participate in children’s activities, and enjoy an afternoon of fine art, music, food and fun. Artwork is available for purchase. Free admission and parking.

For more information, go here.

The ceremony takes place at Newport Beach Civic Center, 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach.

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Old Glory Boat Parade is once again setting sail on July 4th

The American Legion Yacht Club (ALYC) in Newport Beach is once again setting sail around Newport Harbor for their annual Old Glory Boat Parade on Thursday, July 4 beginning at 1 p.m. This is part of the three-day American Legion Newport Harbor Post 291 Centennial event, celebrating their 100th year anniversary.

Themed “Stars, Stripes and Sails,” entrants are encouraged to decorate their boats to celebrate this theme.

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Photo and map courtesy of ALYC

All decked out in red, white and blue for the ALYC’s Old Glory Boat Parade, “My Way” owned by Les and Marilyn Davidson was a previous Sweepstakes award winner

Leading the parade will be the ALYC boat Valor with their Grand Marshal Newport Beach Mayor Will O’Neill, followed by VIP boats that will be filled with active duty servicemembers and veterans. They are pleased to recognize Mayor O’Neill for his service to the community and his service to our county. Participation in this all-volunteer boat parade is an extension of his celebration of volunteers and community members programs for the betterment of Newport Beach and surrounding communities.

The parade will begin at 1 p.m. off the east end of Lido Isle and follow a course throughout the harbor between the hours of 1-3:30 p.m., offering everyone a chance to enjoy the parade. Viewing maps can be downloaded from ALYC website at

All boaters are invited to decorate their vessels and participate in the parade. Registration is free with additional information also at the ALYC website ( including a map of the parade route and approximate viewing times. Participants will compete for class awards such as Best Decorated, Finest Costumes, Most Creative and the Commodore’s Award, with class winners to be announced at an Awards Banquet on Sunday, July 16 at 5:30 p.m.

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2024 Parade Map with estimated viewing times around Newport Harbor

“We are encouraging local boaters to join us for the parade,” said Commodore David Campagna. “It’s a lot of fun, and a very fulfilling event to see the community appreciate the effort to decorate your boat and celebrate our nation’s independence in style. For the general public, we hope you include the parade as part of your day. It’s a can’t-miss opportunity to celebrate with your friends and family.”

Celebrating almost 70 years, the Old Glory Parade began very casually in the 1950s as the Character Boat Parade and as the years passed, the Newport Harbor Chamber of Commerce took the helm, changed the theme and built her into a grand parade. Today, hailed as one of California’s largest longest-running patriotic boat parades, this annual happening is sponsored by the ALYC, and is free to watch from most public beaches, docks and boardwalks throughout the scenic harbor area.

Visit for more information about the Old Glory Boat Parade and for information about the three-day Centennial Celebration.

American Legion Yacht Club is located at 215 15th St., Newport Beach. Call 949.673.5002.

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Nostalgia in Newport

Photo series courtesy of Newport Beach Historical Society

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Photo donated by Mrs. F. L. Lindeman/Courtesy of NBHS

This is one of at least five of Newport Beach’s Rose Parade float entries, lined up on Orange Grove Boulevard, ready for the 1948 Pasadena parade. It depicts the Flight of the Snowbirds which started in 1936 and is now Newport Harbor’s oldest continuous annual sailboat race. It began with Snowbird class boats and in 1975 as they became less popular it became the Flight of Lasers, and then in 2017 it added the Harbor 20 Class and was named the Flight of Newport. In 1938, the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce entered a float featuring Newport-Balboa Queen Marilyn Hill. This century, the city’s floats appeared in 2006, “Sailing Through the Century” and in 2024, “Jingle on the Waves,” which set the record for the longest float entry ever.

Newport Beach Historical Society is located at the Balboa Branch Library, 100 E. Balboa Ave., Newport Beach, Calif. 92661. Hours are Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Both the library and museum are closed on Sundays. Free admission. For more information, visit, or email

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Aram Saroyan – A writer revisits his love of art


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Photos courtesy of Aram Saroyan

Aram Saroyan, 2023

Aram Saroyan, who resides in Newport Beach, is the son of the late Armenian writer William Saroyan, who in this country in the early ‘30s literally placed Armenia on the map. We might as well get any curiosity about the name behind us. At least Aram would like to do that. As he puts it in his short story “The Musician” from Artists in Trouble, “There is a specific gravity known by children of the famous that I’m certain is quite different from the gravity that holds most people to the planet. It is, I would say, a more horizontal force.”

Aram, like his father, was a writer, and occasionally still is, although these days he thinks more about his art. (Arguably, do writers ever stop writing? Actors stop acting? Artists stop art-ing?)

Which brings us full circle. We can’t ignore what Saroyan-the-Younger indeed wrote: Trio, a portrait of an intimate friendship between his mother Carol Matthau, and her closest friends Oona Chaplin and Gloria Vanderbilt; Last Rites, the Death of William Saroyan; Still Night in L.A, a detective story packed with beautiful people and murder; and Day and Night: Bolinas Poems, to name a few. His concrete poems have received numerous honors (suggest googling “crickets”) and invited, shall we say, confusion (“lighght”). If asked, he explains, “Yes, horribly misspelled and on purpose for a word that comes off as either verb or noun. Lights are lights, whether lit or not. The spelling is to suggest just that.”

But it is his art he wants to talk about, and for good reason. He has a solo show Writing with Colors at the Francis Gallery on Melrose in L.A., from June 28 (opening reception 6:30-8:30 p.m., RSVP 323.413.2327) through August 31. Coincidentally, if alive, his father would be 116 on closing day.

Two well-dressed Saroyans

Or maybe not. Saroyan Senior was a writer who hobnobbed with his closest contemporary Steinbeck, was a contemporary of Hemmingway and Faulkner, those alliances providing Saroyan Junior with a heavy dose of exceptional literature. Yet it was father who introduced son to the world of visual art.

As Aram explains it, his parents divorced before he was 8, giving him not only a bicoastal childhood, but placing him overseas for summer vacations with his father. It’s 1959 and his father, whom he called Pop, was working in Paris on a script for Darryl Zanuck. Aram was just shy of 16n and about to live on the Right Bank with his younger sister Lucy, which, for most mortals, sounds exotic. But they were teenagers often left on their own during the day in a place with a language neither spoke nor a culture they understood.

“Today I wonder whether during that summer my father instinctively allowed us to be a little bored, for that situation yielded an unexpected dividend for me.”

Pop had met the Russian painter Serge Poliakoff who’d gave him a book of reproductions that he placed on a coffee table in the apartment, there to be opened by bored teens. As Aram remembers, the paintings seemed to him “simple-minded.” Yet when he routinely denounced them, his father remained uncharacteristically quiet.

Then, a transformation. “It happened, I don’t doubt, because Pop chose not to argue or mediate my experience.” Over time the work began to engage him and he saw a visual serenity he gradually found “deeply satisfying.”

This was a contrast to an earlier exposure to the absoluteness of photography when at age 14 he apprenticed under Richard Avedon at his New York studio. Unwavering photographs are the polar opposite of unencumbered abstracts.

During that year in New York, Saroyan got in the habit of photographing reflections in puddles left by rain. Seeing the images was one experience. But, for example, rotate an upside-down red Third Avenue bus in the original print to right-side-up and an abstract appears.

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When ink meets up with water, no controlling what happens

There were more enticements in the Paris apartment. “Pop had watercolors and old-fashioned pens that were filled from an ink well,” he explained. “At some point I noticed that water affected the consistency of the different colors in a variety of random ways.”

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These drawings and paintings make for an impressive collection of his earliest work. Yet he returned to writing, published a magazine in the early sixties (“One way to get published is become the publisher.”), and for a dozen years from 1972 to 1984 lived in Bolinas, north of San Francisco, a haven for American poets. Two of his three children were born there, along with many of his literary works. Bolinas recently made front-page news as a town without a post office for 15 months and counting. Does the absence of a P.O. make for a sanctuary?

Writing meshing with art

Where does the written word stop and art start, and why make the leap?

“I got tired of the minute scrutiny involved in writing and wanted a field where I was essentially untutored so I could be free. Rather than being dictated by my mind I could simply go into impulses with color and line.” He paused for a few seconds. “I wanted to be freed of my mind.”

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Art can be playful and provocative

Question: Are you saying that visual art is easier than writing?

Answer: It can be easier. Less can be more. But in writing, the less has to be very precise.

Art gave him a freedom to make mistakes with a sole objective to see if he could correct them. Not by cutting them, but by following his own instincts. “Relative to writing, I didn’t know what I was doing. I know a whole generation of writers. Do I know a whole generation of painters? No.”

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Untitled from that summer in Paris, 1959

Back to that 1959 summer in Paris and a little store of miscellaneous items where he found an original pencil drawing of a man’s head, signed “HM” for Henri Matisse, and for the unthinkable price of $150, a lot more money back in the day. Aram described it as a “bad drawing” in a series that were published in a book that came with the drawing. “Matisse of course was a master draftsman who could render any subject perfectly, so he must have made the decision to do this for whatever reason. It came framed and I put it my room back at home in New York, and I saw it every day for years. It wasn’t a realism, but it was alive. It engaged me in one way or another. So that was a green light for me when I decided to do a more intensive dive into art than I’d ever done.”

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Michillinda Park in Pasadena gives a new meaning to Concrete Poetry

When asked how he feels about today’s art scene, Saroyan acknowledged there are always wonderful artists who work in different idioms from realist to abstract, and all stops in between. He describes himself as a great fan of many of them. Writing communities and art communities share common ground – a supportive environment for celebrating success and venting frustration. But what he has gained from the art world is different. For example, “For me, with art, I proceed by instinct, so that when I make a line on a canvas or blank sheet, I really don’t know where I’m going. Even if I do a portrait I don’t necessarily work with a model or photograph, but proceed by instinct.”

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The world around us an inspiration, sometimes in ways we would rather not experience

What is inspiring? Where does it come from?

“The world that I live in gets into the work in some way.” Still, inspiration can be illusive, even for those who inhabit a world dependent on it. Saroyan started a series of drawings around the time Putin invaded Russia. While not necessarily his intent, the drawings grew in density and intensity. Soon, faces emerged. A good artist knows when to step back and let the feelings and images emerge.

His works are larger now, still linear, still minimalist, although he recently started a series of dense drawings reminiscent of stained glass. “I like the idea of the material, the colors, and the density of the application dominating the canvas in ways. The work immerses me.”

That said, these new canvases are not without challenges. “There’s a bit of an aloof relationship with the work when it becomes very dense. The work immerses me.” This is new for him, and he is uncertain if he is going to continue with this. “The challenge is to make it alive and not just a wash. Still, I like that the material dominates.”

Sixty-five years later and another summer in another city, this time the centerpiece of a show celebrating a lifetime of creativity.

Francis Gallery is located at 8323 Melrose in Los Angeles.

For more information about Francis Gallery, go to


Nancy Carpenter is a regular contributor to Stu News.

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OC Waste & Recycling to host Marine Flare Collection event

OC Waste & Recycling (OCWR) has announced a one-day collection event for boaters and residents to safely dispose of marine flares at no cost on Saturday, June 22 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at 592 Superior Ave., Newport Beach. The disposal of expired flares is crucial to mitigate health and safety risks associated with their presence. OC residents and boat owners are encouraged to participate in this important public service initiative.

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Courtesy of OCWR

OC Waste & Recycling is hosting a drive-through marine flare disposal event on June 22

According to the Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW), an estimated 174,000 outdated flares are generated each year by recreational vessels in California. With this large number of unneeded flares generated annually in California, there is a strong need for public education and awareness about proper disposal as well as good disposal options. Marine flares and signal devices are categorized as explosives, posing challenges in their proper disposal. Currently there are no permitted facilities in California that can accept, treat and/or dispose of non-military explosive waste streams.

OCWR welcomes boaters to utilize this limited special opportunity. Participants are invited to transport expired flares in their vehicle trunks. Upon arrival at the drive-through event, designated staff will efficiently collect items from vehicles and securely store them for disposal.

“I invite Orange County residents and boaters to help us keep our oceans clean and safely dispose of your marine flares at our convenient drive-through event hosted by OC Waste & Recycling,” said Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley, Fifth District. “With 32 miles of coastline in the Fifth District, we must serve as excellent stewards of our coast to protect our oceans, vital marine ecosystems and coastal way of life here in Orange County. I hope residents and boaters do their part and take advantage of this special opportunity to properly dispose of marine flares this month.”

“We are excited to organize this free collection event, contributing to the safe removal of hazardous flares from boats and preventing their entry into landfills, having the expired and unspent flares disposed of properly,” said Tom Koutroulis, director of OC Waste & Recycling. “The disposal of marine flares often involves significant costs and regulatory hurdles. We are glad to offer this essential service to boaters across the county, to continue protecting public health and the environment.”

It’s important to note that only marine flares will be accepted at this disposal event. Items such as electronic flares, military-grade flares and household hazardous waste such as paint, oil, e-waste, or batteries will not be accepted. For guidance on the proper disposal of household hazardous waste, visitors are encouraged to visit General recycling inquiries can be addressed at

The marine flare disposal event aligns with OCWR’s mission to ensure the safe and proper disposal of hazardous waste.

Partner Dockwalkers, who are seasoned boating safety experts will be distributing complimentary boater kit coupons and flare discount coupons, courtesy of the Coastal Commission. OC Healthcare Agency will also be present onsite to provide information on their free Bilge Pad Exchange program. For additional information, including resource recovery and waste disposal details, visit

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American Legion Auxiliary Unit 291 holds Salute to Service event

The American Legion Auxiliary Unit 291 Newport Harbor announced the launch of a new program, Salute to Service, honoring our local high school seniors who are joining the military upon graduation.

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Photos by John Araganda, American Legion Newport Harbor Unit 291 historian

Army Recruiters Jose Peralta and Jake Rodriguez, Army Recruits Garrett Marlin, Daniela Rocha and Samuel Decasa with Army Recruiter Anthony Carter

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Army Recruit Aaron Letwin (center) with parents Bennett (left) and Lauren Letwin (right)

The inaugural event took place June 3 at the American Legion Newport Harbor Post 291 starting with a Duffy harbor cruise partially sponsored by the Duffy Electric Boat Sales and Rentals, a buffet dinner sponsored by The Segerstrom Foundation, and a program filled with speakers, music and opportunity drawings.

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Air Force Recruit Nathanael Cho (center) with parents Jon (right) and Anna Cho (left)

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Veronica Ruvalcaba, Navy Recruiter Tara Montgomery, Navy Recruit Makeyla Janny Zamarripa and Tony Zamarripa

They recognize the dedication and commitment required for such a significant decision, and the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 291 Newport Harbor is dedicated to providing comprehensive support and mentorship to their future service personnel.

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Salute to Service guests enjoy a video presentation titled “What I Wish I Had Known Before Boot Camp,” created by John Araganda, American Legion Newport Harbor Unit 291 historian

If you have any questions or would like to express your interest in supporting this initiative in 2025, reach out to

The American Legion Auxiliary Unit 291 thanks you for your support in their mission to empower and assist the next generation of military leaders.

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Local 8th graders to host Sidewalk Art Sale on June 26 to benefit Assistance League of Newport-Mesa

On Wednesday, June 26 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., local 8th grade Assisteen volunteers will host a Sidewalk Art Sale at the Assistance League of Newport-Mesa parking lot to raise money for the nonprofit organization.

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Local 8th graders to host Sidewalk Art Sale benefiting Assistance League of Newport-Mesa on June 26

Assistance League of Newport-Mesa was founded as a chartered chapter of National Assistance League in 1940. In 1962, the chapter’s Assisteens Auxiliary was formed, adding young adults from 7th through 12th grade to their volunteer ranks. Today, with close to 400 members, the organization continues to support children and families throughout the Newport-Mesa community with the mission of transforming lives and strengthening community.

The Sidewalk Art Sale will feature a varied collection of beautiful artwork that was received by donors, consignors, as well as from local estate sales. The collection of artwork has something for everyone at great prices. The proceeds from this event will go toward funding Assistance League of Newport-Mesa’s philanthropic programs.

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Assistance League of Newport-Mesa has been serving our community for 84 years

Assisteen volunteers will earn community service hours for overseeing the sale, including setting up and displaying the artwork that will be sold. They will gain experience interacting with customers, working a cash register, packaging the artwork and helping to carry purchases to customers’ cars. The Art Sale will provide an opportunity for local 8th graders to participate directly in raising money for the Assistance League’s philanthropic programs.

The Assistance League of Newport-Mesa’s major philanthropic programs include Operation School Bell, The Cheri Harris Dental Center and the organization’s Scholarship Program. Proceeds from the Thrift Store and Consignment Shop, fundraising events, grants and endowments provide the major financial support for the group’s philanthropic programs.

The beautiful collection of artwork offered has something for everyone at great prices

Please come out to help support the Class of 2029 sell artwork to raise money for the Assistance League of Newport-Mesa’s philanthropic programs on Wednesday, June 26 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Assistance League of Newport-Mesa is located at 2220 Fairview Road, Costa Mesa.

For more information, call the Assistance League of Newport-Mesa’s offices at (949) 645-6929 or visit

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Visit Newport Beach launches new campaign “Newport Beach is Calling”

Launched yesterday (Thursday, June 20), Visit Newport Beach is dialing up the nostalgia with the launch of its new campaign, “Newport Beach is Calling.” Debuting on the first day of summer, the campaign transports travelers back to the iconic ‘90s, blending retro fun with modern luxury as it follows two friends on a glamorous adventure around Newport Beach. With vintage fashion, nostalgic phones and the introduction of Visit Newport Beach’s new innovative AI concierge, Marina, the campaign offers a fun and interactive way to plan the perfect summer getaway. With breathtaking views, chic hotels, thrilling coastal activities and gourmet dining, Newport Beach guarantees an unforgettable experience where every moment celebrates the good life. This summer, put your worries on hold and answer the call to luxury, relaxation and unforgettable memories. Newport Beach is on standby to connect you with the ultimate summer vacation. Newport Beach is calling – will you answer?

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Photos courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Campaign commercial showcases the modern luxury of Newport Beach, harkening back to the 1990s

The “Newport Beach is Calling” campaign visuals and commercial brilliantly captures the spirit of the ‘90s while showcasing the modern luxury of Newport Beach. The new campaign commercial follows two friends as they embark on a nostalgic journey filled with vintage phones, bold ‘90s fashion, and a retro aesthetic that captures the era’s charm and allure. The commercial brings this vibe to life, capturing the friends’ glamorous adventures as they dial up the excitement exploring the best of Newport Beach – from world-class beaches and luxurious resorts to captivating harbor-related activities. With every frame, the campaign merges the fun and familiarity of the ‘90s with the sophisticated allure of a luxury vacation destination, resonating with both Gen X and Millennials who lived through the era; and Gen Z who enthusiastically answer the call of its trendy revival.

Meet Marina, Your AI Concierge Extraordinaire:

As part of the summer campaign, Visit Newport Beach is making your vacation planning a breeze with Marina, their new cutting-edge AI concierge. With a playful nod to ‘90s technology, Marina is here to answer your calls about planning the perfect summer getaway to Newport Beach. Just dial 1.800.94.COAST to connect with the AI concierge and let the fun begin! Marina is your personal vacation guru! Whether you’re a culinary enthusiast, an adventure seeker, or someone who just wants to lounge on the beach, they’ve got you covered.

Here’s how the Newport Beach Vacation Hotline can help:

Tailor-Made Itineraries: The AI concierge will ask you a few fun questions to get to know you and your preferences. Are you a thrill-seeker? Do you love gourmet dining? Marina will then whip up a custom Newport Beach itinerary that’s perfect for you. From sunrise yoga sessions to sunset yacht cruises, your personalized vacation awaits!

Get Your Newport-Beach Related Questions Answered: The AI concierge has all the answers you’re looking for. Wondering where to find the best fish tacos? Looking for the top spots to catch a sunset? Just ask! Marina’s extensive knowledge of Newport Beach ensures you get the insider tips and hidden gems that will make your trip unforgettable.

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Ultimate Summer Vacation

“The launch of ‘Newport Beach is Calling’ is an exciting moment for us, as it brings a fresh, nostalgic energy to our summer offerings,” said Gary Sherwin, president & CEO of Visit Newport Beach. “This campaign not only highlights the luxurious experiences Newport Beach is known for, but also adds a fun, playful twist that we believe will captivate both new and returning visitors. We’re thrilled to invite everyone to explore the unique blend of glamour and relaxation that defines a Newport Beach summer.”

Dial into the epitome of summer luxury with the “Newport Beach is Calling” landing page – an interactive hub unveiling exclusive delights that ring in the essence of Newport Beach’s allure. Whether you crave rejuvenating wellness escapes, culinary adventures curated by renowned chefs, thrilling recreational escapades, or indulgent shopping excursions, the campaign landing page serves as your gateway to opulence in Newport Beach. With a plethora of thoughtfully crafted itineraries at your disposal, this digital hotline promises to lead you on an unforgettable journey through the finer aspects of life, ensuring a summer vacation like no other.

For more information about the “Newport Beach is Calling” campaign, visit and follow Visit Newport Beach on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and LinkedIn. Seeking vacation recommendations? Dial 1.800.94.COAST for the exclusive vacation hotline that will be your personal concierge for tailored recommendations, information and inspiration crafted just for you.

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CLUE coming to Segerstrom Center for the Arts for eight performances only from July 23-28

CLUE, the hilarious murder mystery comedy inspired by the board game and adapted from the fan-favorite film, is coming to Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa for a limited eight performance engagement from Tuesday, July 23 through Sunday, July 28. Tickets and information are available by clicking here.

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Photos by Evan Zimmerman for MurphyMade

The Company of the North American tour of “CLUE”

On Wednesday, July 24 at 6:30 p.m., Segerstrom Center hosts a fun and free to the public CLUE Cosplay Contest with prizes for the best individual and group personifications of some of the most famous characters in board game history: Colonel Mustard, Miss Scarlet, Mrs. Peacock, Mrs. White, Mr. Green and Professor Plum. The first 100 people to arrive in costume waill receive a complimentary appetizer voucher for a savory treat at Claim Jumper Steakhouse & Bar. If you ever played the game Clue, now is your chance to dress up and be one of the famous characters! Don’t miss out on this fun opportunity to become a part of the mystery. To register for Segerstrom Center for the Arts’ CLUE Character Costume Contest, click here.

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The Company of the North American tour of “CLUE”

In the play CLUE on stage, led by Broadway Director Casey Hushion (associate director of Mean Girls and The Prom, associate resident director of Aladdin, choreography for the Netflix series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), murder and blackmail are on the menu when six mysterious guests assemble at Boddy Manor for a night they’ll never forget! Was it Mrs. Peacock in the study with the knife? Or was it Colonel Mustard in the library with the wrench? Based on the fan-favorite 1985 Paramount Pictures movie and inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, CLUE is the ultimate whodunit that will leave you dying of laughter and keep you guessing until the final twist.

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The Company of the North American tour of “CLUE”

The cast of CLUE includes Mariah Burks as the Cook, John Treacy Egan as Colonel Mustard, Michelle Elaine as Miss Scarlet, Joanna Glushak as Mrs. Peacock, Tari Kelly as Mrs. White, Mark Price as Wadsworth, John Shartzer as Mr. Green, Jonathan Spivey as Professor Plum, Alex Syiek as Mr. Boddy, Teddy Trice as the Cop and Elisabeth Yancey as Yvette. The understudies are Greg Balla, Alison Ewing, Mary McNulty and James Taylor Odom.

CLUE is based on the screenplay by Jonathan Lynn and written by Sandy Rustin with additional material by Hunter Foster and Eric Price. It features original music by Michael Holland.

The production also features scenic design by Lee Savage, costume design by Jen Caprio, lighting design by Ryan O’Gara and sound design by Jeff Human.

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(L-R) Tari Kelly and Mark Price from North American Tour of “CLUE”

The CLUE franchise began in 1949 with the manufacture of the Cluedo board game. Currently owned and published by Hasbro, the game has since sold more than 200 million copies worldwide. A murder-mystery comedy film by Paramount Pictures based on the board game was released in 1985 and went on to achieve cult classic status with a passionate fanbase.

The North American tour of CLUE is produced by The Araca Group, Work Light Productions, Lively McCabe Entertainment and Aged in Wood.

Hayley Levitt said in Theatermania, “Reminds you what a breezy night of pure entertainment feels like. Synchronized door slams, pratfalls, and wide-eyed gasps should all be on your murder mystery bingo card…happily hums along with no sign of the exertion it takes to make this brand of comedy look utterly effortless. They all roam through set designer Lee Savage’s luscious rendering of Boddy Manor, with surprise portals to more iconic CLUE rooms than you would ever think could fit onstage.”

Tickets for CLUE start at $39 and are available for purchase online at, in person at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa, or by calling 714. 556.2787. For inquiries about group ticket discounts for 10 or more, call the Group Services offices at 714.755.0236.

Performances: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. The Box Office, located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa is open Monday 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Tuesday through Friday 12-5 p.m. and closed on Saturday and Sunday.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. For more information, visit

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Summer Reading Program awaits at the Library

Join the Newport Beach Public Library (NBPL) for a summer of free family activities, entertaining performances and a fun reading challenge for kids, teens and adults.

The Summer Reading Program launched on June 8 and runs through July 27.

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Courtesy of NBPL

Summer reading fun awaits at your local library branch

To get started, sign up for a free Beanstack account and participate in your age group’s online Summer Reading Program. Then stop by your local branch to pick up your prize book (while supplies last!). Participants will log reading and activities to earn digital badges and prizes. Complete the program by earning all required digital badges and be entered into a grand prize drawing!

Online registration via Beanstack is available now. Offline participation is available at any Library Branch.

For more information, go here.

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Wine Walk returns to Environmental Nature Center

The Environmental Nature Center (ENC) is presenting its sixth Wine Walk on Saturday, Aug. 10 from 4-7 p.m. The ENC is collaborating with Hi-Time Wine Cellars to provide guests with a fabulous afternoon of wine tasting, while helping to raise funds for environmental education. Guests will walk through ENC and stop at wine tasting stations along the trails to taste wines from several wineries.

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Courtesy of ENC

Enjoy a fabulous afternoon of wine tasting, while helping to raise funds for environmental education

Small bites will be provided. Live pop/jazz music will be provided by SideNote Keys/Bass near the ENC’s stream. Guests will end their walk with Kean Coffee and dessert. An online auction from August 5-10 will feature a number of items. View the auction at

Most wines being poured will be available for purchase through Hi-Time Wine Cellars with pick-up at Hi-Time at a later date.

“Our annual Wine Walk is a great way to bring the community together to celebrate the ENC, enjoy wine, food, music, nature and friends, and raise funds for our environmental education programs,” said ENC Executive Director Bo Glover. “Funds raised will assist us in continuing to provide transformative experiences at the Environmental Nature Center, ENC Nature Preschool and ENC Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary.”

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

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Celebrate Black Music Month with Summer Sounds on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza

Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents the return of their highly anticipated Summer Sounds concert series on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza on Fridays throughout the months of June and July. Featuring a line-up of Southern California’s most eclectic artists and DJs, audiences can spend the warm summer nights alongside family and friends supporting local artists at this free, all-ages event. From salsa to soul, and everything in between, their line-up promises a musical journey that caters to every taste.

Throughout the Center continues celebrating Black Music Month, showcasing the immense talent and cultural contributions of Black artists. Experience the rich diversity, influence and creativity of Black musicians and be inspired by their dynamic performances.

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Photos courtesy of

South Side Symphony

All events are free with the new Plaza Pass and will take place on Friday evenings July 12-26 from 6:30-9 p.m.

Plaza Pass is a free digital pass for individuals over 18 years old to access free events on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza. No additional tickets or RSVPs are required. Just pull up your Plaza Pass from your Apple Wallet or Google Wallet when you arrive at the entrance, and their ushers will scan you in. Sign up once and gain access to tons of concerts, dance classes and cultural festivals all year long.

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Enjoying the music

This is a casual outdoor concert in an open plaza with limited seating. Don’t forget to grab your lawn chairs, blankets and sweaters to enjoy the show comfortably. Seating location is unassigned and first come, first served.

Indulge your taste buds with delicious offerings from local food trucks and their outdoor restaurant George’s Café, serving up a variety of dinner and drink options from gourmet bites to refreshing beverages. Guests are also welcome to pack picnic baskets with their favorite snacks and refreshments, however no outside alcohol, glass containers, tables, barbecues and food preparation are permitted on the Plaza.

Summer Sounds 2024 Lineup:

Undecided Future on Friday, July 12

Undecided Future – July 12

Based in Southern California, Undecided Future is a revolutionary Pop-Soul group re-paving the way for live entertainment. With their musical influences ranging across the board, UF puts on a show like no other. Gaining the trust and knowledge from many people in the industry, UF has worked with some of the greats, including Jason Derulo, Dr. Dre and Dem Jointz.

Maria Sanchez & The Midnight Groove on Friday, July 19

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Maria Sanchez & The Midnight Groove – July 19

Maria Sanchez, also known as Groovy MS, is a Chicana artist from Riverside, Calif. Her sound perfectly encapsulates “That Soulful Love Type of Music” with a blend of her favorite genres: oldies, soul and funk. Through her music as a singer-songwriter, she aims to create a sense of tranquility and nostalgia that allows one to reminisce. In late 2022, Sanche formed her live band, The Midnight Groove, which consists of the following talented musicians: Jasmine Sanchez (vocals), Esteban Reynaga (guitar), Robert Acosta (drums), Vincent Stevens (bass) and Jacob Sahagun (keys).

Tropa Magica on Friday, July 26

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Tropa Magica – July 26

Invigorating, brilliant and charismatic are just a slew of the adjectives used to describe Tropa Magica. “The East L.A. duo made a name for themselves by combining alternative, grunge and psychedelic rock with cumbia,” said Spin magazine. In late 2019, brothers David and Rene Pacheco self-released a limited-edition seven-inch vinyl EP titled Smells Like Cumbia, featuring cumbia renditions of Nirvana songs.

Summer Sounds 2024: Segerstrom Center for the Arts,

Julianne and George Argyros Plaza, Friday evenings throughout June & July, Doors open at 6:30 p.m., Free with Plaza Pass.

For tickets, go to, or purchase in person at The Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, or call 714.556.2878. For Group sales, call 714.755.0236.

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School Notes

News and notes from our colleges and universities

Rachel Haft, of Newport Beach, has graduated in spring 2024 from the University of Iowa (UA).

Haft was a student in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences whose academic program of study was Communication Studies. She was awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree.

As a top global university, Iowa is the ideal destination for learning, discovery and innovation. It brings art and science together to create a truly unique interdisciplinary education. With more than 200 areas of study to choose from, students are encouraged to mix and match majors, minors and certificates to earn a degree that reflects their unique interests.

The campus seamlessly blends into the heart of downtown Iowa City, making it easy to access academic resources and belong to a larger, welcoming community. With more than 500 student organizations, clubs and communities on campus, and countless in-town events scheduled throughout the year, Iowa makes it easy to build a network of friendships and connections that last a lifetime.

Ryan Ha, of Newport Coast, has earned a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering with Highest Honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta.

Ha was among more than 5,700 undergraduate and graduate students to be presented Georgia Tech degrees during the Institute’s 266th Commencement exercises, held May 2-4 at McCamish Pavilion.

The Georgia Institute of Technology, or Georgia Tech, is one of the top public research universities in the U.S., developing leaders who advance technology and improve the human condition. As a leading technological university, Georgia Tech is an engine of economic development for Georgia, the Southeast, and the nation, conducting more than $1 billion in research annually for government, industry and society.

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A glimpse at Crystal Cove in June

“Summertime at Crystal Cove is magical – and our programs team has been working all year to create new opportunities for folks to explore the park and to reimagine old favorites,” said Crystal Cove Conservancy President & CEO Kate Wheeler. “Our team has been testing new ideas like science hikes and rethinking and expanding classics like the Historic District Walking Tours and movies on the beach to create a menu of programs to help parkgoers deepen their connection with the park and become part of protecting it.”

From hands-on explorations of history and nature to art classes and conservation stewardship, there is something for everyone to explore during the summer at Crystal Cove. The Conservancy’s summer programs will also take place during the third annual California State Parks Week happening June 12-16.

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Sign up to spend a relaxing day capturing the beauty of the Cove on canvas with Crystal Cove plein air artist, Debbie Morines

The Great Plein Air Art Experience every Monday and Wednesday through October, except July 1, July 3 and September 2 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Registration is required. Celebrate more than 100 years of plein air art at Crystal Cove State Park and spend a relaxing day capturing the beauty of the Cove on canvas with Crystal Cove plein air artist, Debbie Morines. During these four-hour classes, you’ll take part in living history while learning the step-by-step process of creating your very own plein air painting from beginning to end. Each class will have a break for lunch, but lunch is not provided. Classes are for ages 18 and up. Register here.

Tuesdays in the Commons, through Sept. 10: Hands-on Educational Activities from 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Stop by the Education Commons in the Crystal Cove State Park Historic District each week on Tuesday for new hands-on educational activities that will help participants learn about ongoing conservation work at the park, the critical habitats at Crystal Cove, and how it all connects with landscape scale efforts to protect and preserve the natural world. Park at the Los Trancos lot near the trailer then walk through the tunnel to the Education Commons (PCH inland at stoplight Los Trancos). $15 day use fee.

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Join a fun, family-friendly nature hike through Crystal Cove State Park’s Moro Canyon

Native Plants: The Key to Climate Resilience, Friday, June 14 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. (Part of California State Parks Week).

Join a fun, family-friendly nature hike through Crystal Cove State Park’s Moro Canyon as you learn about the coastal sage scrub plant community and how native plants are resilient in our changing climate. This three-mile trek, which includes a short incline, will wind through the canyon to visit a current habitat restoration project. Participants will meet restoration team members and participate in stewardship activities.

Celebrate Crystal Cove State Park’s Natural & Cultural History, Saturday, June 15 from 4-8 p.m. (Part of California State Parks Week). Registration is required for this event.

Join Crystal Cove State Park and Crystal Cove Conservancy for an afternoon filled with fun and learning, as you celebrate the cultural history of the park. Participants will take part in a variety of activities exploring the indigenous history of the area, learning about the Acjachemen and Tongva People who have been here from time immemorial, and continue to call Crystal Cove and surrounding areas their home. Parking can be found in the Los Trancos Parking Lot. Event is free after the $15 day-use fee. For more information and to register, go here.

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Sign up to spend a relaxing day capturing the beauty of the Cove

Historic Beach Cottages & Coastline Restoration Tour, Sunday, June 16 from 5-6:30 p.m. (Part of California State Parks Week). Registration is required for this event.

Step back in time for a guided walking tour of the restored Crystal Cove Beach Cottages in Crystal Cove State Park’s Historic District, as Crystal Cove Conservancy expert staff share stories of how each cottage was lovingly and painstakingly restored to preserve the architectural charms and details of the original structures. Participants will also learn about the extraordinary coastal engineering measures taken to ensure the cottages remain resilient to sea level rise. For more information and to register, go here.

Explore the Cove Science Hikes, Fourth Saturday each month: June 22, July 27, August 24 and September 28 from 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Registration is required for this event. Take a hike with a Conservancy educator to explore Crystal Cove State Park’s geological and ecological systems. Explore the impacts and challenges of climate change including fire ecology, ecological restoration, coastal engineering and marine conservation, as well as native versus non-native species and their impact on natural communities and ecosystem functions. Registration is required for these events.

Historic District Walking Tours, Fourth Saturday each month: June 22, July 27, August 24 and September 28 from 2-3 p.m. Historic District Walking Tours return to Crystal Cove State Park. During this 60-minute tour led by Conservancy educators and former cottage residents, participants will step back in time to explore the history of Crystal Cove and the Historic District’s rescue and restoration.

Movies on the Beach, monthly from July through September. Click here for upcoming events.

Cove Talks, Ongoing. Click here for upcoming events. Registration is required for these events.

Grunion Run, One night only. Click here for details. Registration is required for this event.

For more information about summer programming at Crystl Cove and to register for upcoming programs, go here.

For a complete calendar of events, go to

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Summer Nature Camps at ENC

The Environmental Nature Center (ENC) and the ENC Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary have engaging opportunities in June – something for everyone. If you’re not looking for a structured activity, come join a quiet walk on the trails or bring a sustainably packed picnic. They’re open for everyone on Saturdays and Sundays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Visit to register for a scheduled program.

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Summer Nature Camps are being held June 17 through August 9

June 17-August 9: Summer Nature Camps

Summer Nature Camps are being offered at the ENC in Newport Beach and at the ENC Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary in Modjeska Canyon from June 17 through August 9 in one-week sessions. The ENC has offered Nature Camps since 1977. Nature Camp provides nature play and quality science education in an outdoor, hands-on setting. ENC Nature Camp emphasizes experiential learning. Campers spend their time outside, having a great time observing nature up close using tools like binoculars, magnifying lenses and microscopes. For more information and to register, go here.

Environmental Nature Center is located at 1601 E. 16th St., Newport Beach.

For more information, visit

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It’s a kids’ world at Newport Beach Public Library this summer

Hey kids! Newport Beach Public Library (NBPL) announces a summer of free family activities, entertaining performances and an interactive reading challenge. From high-energy dance to interactive science programs, family crafts, prizes, books and much more. Stop by any location or check out their website to learn how you can join the fun! The program runs through July 27.

Summer Reading Program events are generously funded by the Friends of the Library. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Space is first-come, first-seated and limited by room capacity. Registration is not required.

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Photos courtesy of NBPL

Engage in the NBPL Summer Reading Program taking place through July 27

Summer Reading Challenge Opening Day

Start your summer of fun at any Newport Beach Public library location with a day of activities and crafts to kick off their annual Summer Reading Program.

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From the desert to the sea – lets get crafty

Desert Habitat Crafts

Mariners Branch: Saturday, June 22 at 11 a.m.

Desert crafts will be in bloom at Mariners Branch Library. From critters to cacti, sand to sunshine, come and create your very own desert-themed crafts.

Dig Dug and Dino-mites

Central Library: Tuesday, June 25 at 11 a.m.

Balboa Branch: Wednesday, June 26 at 3 p.m.

Corona del Mar Branch: Thursday, June 27 at 3 p.m.

Mariners Branch: Saturday, June 29 at 11 a.m.

Meet Dig Dug and his Dino-friends as they go on a fun dinosaur adventure after awaking from a 65-million-year nap! Enjoy this interactive and engaging puppet show all about dinosaurs.

Under the Sea Crafts

Central Library: Tuesday, July 2 at 11 a.m.

Balboa Branch: Wednesday, July 3 at 3 p.m.

Corona del Mar Branch: Friday, July 5 at 3 p.m.

Mariners Branch: Saturday, July 6 at 11 a.m.

Dive into your creativity with crafts inspired by deep-sea creatures and the majestic depths of the ocean.

Let’s Go Crazy for Chemistry

Central Library: Tuesday, July 9 at 11 a.m.

Balboa Branch: Wednesday, July 10 at 3 p.m.

Corona del Mar Branch: Thursday, July 11 at 3 p.m.

Mariners Branch: Saturday, July 13 at 11 a.m.

Explore the gooey, slippery, slimy world of chemistry with a zany professor of fun! Kids will be guided through experiments that change everyday household items using the principles of chemistry.

Forest Animal Crafts

Central Library: Tuesday, July 16 at 11 a.m.

Balboa Branch: Wednesday, July 17 at 3 p.m.

Corona del Mar Branch: Thursday, July 18 at 3 p.m.

Mariners Branch: Saturday, July 20 at 11 a.m.

Who lives in the forest? Make crafts that explore this diverse habitat and its many adorable creatures!

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Discover tricks and illusions with the Magic of Tony Daniels at all library branches

Magic Show: Reading is Magic

Central Library: Tuesday, July 23 at 11 a.m.

Balboa Branch: Wednesday, July 24 at 3 p.m.

Corona del Mar Branch: Thursday, July 25 at 3 p.m.

Mariners Branch: Saturday, July 27 at 11 a.m.

Experience exciting displays of tricks and illusions with the Magic of Tony Daniels. Join this fun-filled show of magic and comedy.

Library branches:

–Central Library, 1000 Avocado Ave., Newport Beach

–Balboa Branch, 100 E. Balboa Blvd., Balboa

–Corona del Mar Branch, 410 Marigold Ave., Corona del Mar

–Crean Mariners Branch, 1300 Irvine Ave., Newport Beach

For more information and a complete listing of events, visit the NBPL calendar here.

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Look what’s happening at Upper Newport Bay in June

June at Upper Newport Bay welcomes you to the outdoors with Sow and Grow Fridays, kayaking, Community Day, Restoration in Big Canyon Restoration and Nature Journaling: Insects. Come discover this ecological reserve (coastal wetland) that spans 752 acres.

Fridays, June 21, 28 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.: Sow and Grow Fridays

On Friday mornings, bring a friend and join Sow and Grow Fridays in Upper Newport Bay’s native plant nursery for three hours of hands-on volunteer-driven fun. Each week, you will have the opportunity to assist in seasonal activities like seed collection, sowing seed flats, transplanting seedlings, pruning, processing cuttings, composting, pot washing, weeding, and maintaining nursery space. Minimum age: 13 years old. Minors must have a legal guardian present at all times. For group requests, contact Although most of the work will be conducted under shade, volunteers should be prepared to stand and be exposed to changing weather for various lengths of time. Please bring sturdy closed-toe shoes, hiking or outdoor working attire, a reusable water bottle, sunscreen and a hat. Free parking and public restrooms are available on site. No experience is necessary. Training and tools will be provided. Takes place at Back Bay Science Center located at 600 Shellmaker Road, Newport Beach. Register for Sow and Grow here.

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Photos courtesy of Upper Newport Bay

Kayaking is one of the best ways to appreciate the beauty and tranquility of Upper Newport Bay

Fridays, June 22, 29 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.: Discover Upper Newport Bay Kayak Tour

On Fridays, join a public group to kayak in the ecological reserve of Upper Newport Bay. Kayaking is one of the best ways to appreciate the beauty and tranquility of Upper Newport Bay and to see skimmers, terns and egrets flying by you. If your eyes are quick, catch a glimpse of a silver mullet (fish) jumping out of the water or a stingray gliding beneath you. Each tour is unique with startling differences in the birds and other wildlife depending on the season and the state of the tide. In summer, black skimmers and terns that come here to nest predominate. Tours are guided by certified volunteer naturalists. Ages 8+ are welcome. Takes place at Newport Aquatic Center located at 1 Whitecliffs Drive, Newport Beach. Cost: $25. Register for kayaking here.

Sundays, June 23, 30 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.: Community Days

On Sundays, join UNB as you tour the facility, including Shellmaker trail, and the teaching lab and aquatic lab. Learn about the Back Bay Science Center’s Educational Programs and how you can get more involved. There are fun, hands-on activities for kids. Pets are not allowed due to nesting season. You can also join by bike. There are bike racks in the back of the building by the touch tanks. Please do not ride your bike on the trails on the island.

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Help protect the more than 25,000 plants from invasive flora at UNB’s Big Canyon restoration site

Thursdays, June 27 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.: Community Days

More than 25,000 plants have been installed at UNB’s Big Canyon restoration site, and they would love your help protecting the new plantings from invasive plants. Invasive plants pose a huge threat to displacing native plant communities and wildlife at the Bay, second only to habitat loss. By removing invasive weeds, you will ensure the Big Canyon project site thrives with native plants for years to come. No prior plant ID/weeding experience is necessary. Minimum age: 14 years old. Minors must have a legal guardian present at all times. If you are interested in bringing out a large group of 15 or more, contact Chris Fabela at for more information on how to sign up. Meet at 9 a.m. at the project site entrance. Google Maps will lead you astray, so look out for the map with directions that will be included in your confirmation email. From the parking location, the project site is a short five-minute walk into the canyon. Note: There are no restrooms at this location. Be sure to bring sunscreen, a hat and plenty of water. They also recommend wearing breathable clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty. Hand tools, shovels and gloves will be provided. All volunteers not yet fully vaccinated must wear a face mask while on the project site. Face masks are optional for fully vaccinated volunteers.

Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve is located at 2301 University Drive, Newport Beach. The Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center is located here. For more information, call 949.923.2290, or email Visit

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Get out and explore Buck Gully with three stunning hikes, assist with habitat restoration, learn about plant life

Taking a trek in the Buck Gully Reserve, which connects Corona del Mar and Newport Coast, is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the cooler autumn weather. Explore this 300-acre natural habitat on foot, with three hikes led by the Irvine Ranch Conservancy staff and an opportunity to assist in habitat restoration.

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Photos by Emily Spain

The stream is running, making for a memorable late afternoon/early evening hike

Buck Gully Upper Loop Evening Hike: Explore the richness of Buck Gully Reserve as you hike during the beautiful early evening hours on Tuesdays, July 9 and Aug. 20 from 4-6:30 p.m. The stream is running, and the rich plant and animal life are enjoying the cool, shady canyon making for an evening hike in a natural oasis amid the suburban surroundings. Walk along San Joaquin Hills Road, which overlooks Buck Gully for the first mile, then drop down into the canyon on the Bobcat Trail, looping back through the upper end of the gully along the Buck Gully Trail. This activity is conducted at a walking pace, approximately 3 miles per hour. The distance is 4 miles; duration, 2.5 hours with moderate difficulty. This hike is open to those 12+ years and older. This hike is free, but registration is required. Staging area is the Newport Coast Community Center at 6401 San Joaquin Hills Road. Register at

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Enjoy panoramic views as you take in the canyon’s natural beauty

Bridges of Buck Gully Hike: Buck Gully is a natural, coastal canyon which opened up to the public in 2012 with the installation of four bridges to allow for safe public access. Discover the bridges on Tuesdays, July 23 and Sept. 10 from 8-11:30 a.m., which facilitate exploration of the Buck Gully Reserve, and also provide viewing platforms from which to pause and observe the abundant life in and around the stream. The guided program starts with a short walk from the OASIS Senior Center to the beginning of the Buck Gully trail, offering a visually dramatic entrance into this special canyon. Open to those 16+ years and older. Conducted at a walking pace at approximately 3 miles per hour. Distance is 5 miles; duration is 3.5 hours with moderate difficulty. This hike is free, but registration is required. Meet at the OASIS Senior Center auxiliary lot at 5th and Marguerite in Corona del Mar. Register at

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Several bridges provide vantage points for taking in reserve vistas

Buck Gully Loop Hike: Come and explore the entire Buck Gully Reserve trail system on Tuesdays, Aug. 6 and Sept. 24 from 8-11:30 a.m. Beginning from the OASIS Senior Center, you’ll hike up through the almost three-mile length of the canyon, then along San Joaquin Hills Road for about a mile, stopping at Canyon Watch Park, where you will take in the panoramic view of the reserve and the Pacific coastline before descending back into the canyon along the Bobcat Trail. This hike is 6 miles; duration, 3.5 hours with high-moderate difficulty and conducted at a walking pace, approximately three miles per hour. It is geared to those 16+ years of age. This hike is free, but registration is required. Meet at the OASIS Senior Center auxiliary lot at 5th and Marguerite in Corona del Mar. Register at

Fourth Friday Habitat Restoration in Buck Gully on Fridays, June 28, July 26, Aug. 23 and Sept. 17 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Birds and other wildlife need healthy habitat to thrive. Simple things like planting native plants or removing non-native plants can greatly improve habitat for wildlife. You can be part of that positive impact while enjoying the beauty of Buck Gully. Come help with a variety of activities ranging from seed collection to weeding invasive plants. This activity takes place on sloped terrain and sturdy hiking boots are highly recommended. All training, tools and gloves will be provided to ensure your safety and comfort. Rattlesnakes are occasionally seen here and generally avoid people, but protective gear will be provided. Walking pace is approximately 3 mph with a distance of one to five miles and a duration of three hours. The difficulty is moderate. This is geared to 18 years+. Meet at the OASIS Senior Center auxiliary lot at 5th and Marguerite in Corona del Mar. Register at

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Newport Beach Master Community Calendar

The following are calendar links for regularly scheduled meetings and events in Newport Beach:

City of Newport Beach meetings & events calendar

Newport Beach Public Library – everything at the library calendar

Newport-Mesa Unified School District news & events calendar

Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce community events calendar

Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce community events calendar

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NB Foundation to host Fentanyl Education Round Table on June 24 featuring Mayor Will O’Neill and OC Sheriff Don Barnes

Newport Beach Mayor Will O’Neill and Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes, in partnership with the Newport Beach Foundation, will lead a Fentanyl Education Round Table on Monday, June 24, discussing data on fentanyl overdoses in our community, the current efforts by law enforcement to combat the spread and distribution of the drug, and the latest information on Narcan and other programs that have been implemented to curb drug overdoses.

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Photos courtesy of NB Foundation

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Mayor Will O’Neill (top) and OC Sheriff Don Barnes (bottom) will lead Fentanyl Education Round Table, presented by the Newport Beach Foundation, on June 24

The round table will be held from 6-8 p.m. in the Newport Beach City Hall Community Room, 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach. There will be light bites and refreshments provided.

Why attend? The fentanyl epidemic is a serious threat to our community’s health and safety. Join OC Sheriff Don Barnes and Mayor Will O’Neill as they share vital insights and updates on this critical issue. Your participation is crucial in spreading awareness and knowledge about this pressing community issue.

RSVP: Register yourself and any guests through this link.

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Check out what’s being checked out from the Newport Beach Public Library this week! Grab some great spring reads in hardcover, eBook, or audio either in person or online at

Top 10 Nonfiction

1. Elon Musk by Walter Isaacson

2. The Kingdom, The Power and The Glory: American Evangelicals in an Age of Extremism by Tim Alberta

3. Burn Book: A Tech Love Story by Kara Swisher

4. Outlive: The Science & Art of Longevity by Peter Attia

5. Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear

6. Education: A Memoir by Tara Westover

7. How to Know a Person: The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Deeply Seen by David Brooks

8. Sociopath: A Memoir by Patric Gagne

9. An Unfinished Live Story: A Personal History of the 1960 by Doris Kearns Goodwin

10. Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life by Arnold Schwarzenegger

Top 10 Fiction

1. The Women by Kristin Hannah

2. First Lie Wins: A Novel by Ashley Elston

3. The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store by James McBride

4. Camino Ghosts by John Grisham

5. Funny Story by Emily Henry

6. Resurrection Walk by Michael Connelly

7. Table for Two: Fictions by Amor Towles

8. The Exchange: After the Firm by John Grisham

9. The Secret by Lee Child

10. Toxic Prey by John Sandford

Top 10 Children’s

1. Dog Man by Dav Pilkey

2. The Baby-Sitters Club: A Graphic Novel by Ann M. Martin

3 Baby-Sitters Little Sister by Katy Farina

4. Cat Kid Comic Club by Dav Pilkey

5. Phoebe and Her Unicorn by Dana Simpson

6. Amulet by Kazu Kibuishi

7. Nat Enough by Maria Scrivan

8. Guts by Raina Telgemeier

9. Investigators by John Patrick Green

10. Narwhal and Jelly by Ben Clanton

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This is as close as we can come to actually singing to our readers on their birthdays!

We’d love to include yours – and/or your children’s birthdays here.

Just email to:

Celebrate and enjoy your birthday!

June 18: Rich Fischbeck, Steve Mattoon, Teri Williams

June 19: Chase Rief, Garrett Weston, Jennifer McLemore Orellana, Scott Saito

June 20: Andy Youngmark, Austin Stovall, Carsten Ball, Dave Marzinke, Diane Harkey, JJ Mazzo, Steve Bone

June 21: Charles Larry Hoffman, Christine White, Katie Anne Baker

June 22: Andrea Arguello-Coulson, Christopher Gialanella, Eileen Santora, Kristi Carieri, Monica Venzlaff, Sally Herdman

June 23: Andrew Harris, Caleb Asher, David Cloud, Donald Pfaff, Emmeline Hong, Vicki Partridge Johnson, Walter Schindler

June 24: Chad D. Rutan, Dale Hite, Don Leach, Jon Lansner, Lacy Schoen, Chad D. Rutan, Nancy Palmer

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NB Public Library Foundation to host Kids’ Marketplace

The Newport Beach Public Library Foundation (NBPLF) invites the community to join together for their upcoming Kids’ Marketplace, to be held on Sunday, June 23 from 2-4 p.m. at the Newport Beach Public Library’s Friends Room.

The marketplace will be highlighted by children selling a variety of items like beverages, snacks, homemade jewelry and games. Let your imagination run wild!

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Courtesy of NBPLF

NBPLF’s Kids’ Marketplace will be a treat for the whole family

With the event, kids will have a unique opportunity to help raise funds for Newport Beach Public Library’s new Witte Hall. Everyone is welcome to enjoy delicious treats, entertainment and to explore the event.

The event is suitable for ages preschool and up. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

The Newport Beach Public Library is located at 1000 Avocado Ave., Newport Beach.

For more information about NBPLF and its Beyond Books campaign for Witte Hall, go to

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Pet of the Week

Stu News Newport is delighted to be working with the Newport Beach Animal Shelter to help get the word out in search of loving homes for pets that deserve a warm, nurturing environment and a place to call “home.”

The shelter is delighted to announce that Stormy, a sweet 1-year-old chihuahua, is now available for adoption. This charming little girl is ready to find her forever home.

Courtesy of the Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Stormy

Stormy adores belly rubs and is always eager to play with other small, young dogs. While Stormy may take a minute to warm up to new people, her gentle nature and loving personality quickly shine through. She is a true sweetheart who will bring joy and warmth to your home. She is spayed, microchipped and up to date on vaccinations.

Potential adopters are invited to schedule a meet and greet with Stormy. To make an appointment, contact the shelter at 949.718.3454, or email

The shelter does require completed application forms for their animals, so simply print one up from their non-profit’s webpage at After it is completed, you can email it to, and upon review, they’ll call you to schedule an appointment. If you have any questions, call 949.718.3454.

On their wish list of needs is poop bags.

Also, consider becoming a member of an incredible nonprofit that supports the city’s efforts with providing wonderful opportunities to stray, injured, ill and owner-surrendered domestic pets. Visit

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Segerstrom Center for the Arts hosts Fifth Annual All Abilities Celebration

Segerstrom Center for the Arts and Orange County Arts & Disability has announced the 5th Annual All Abilities Celebration, set to take place on Saturday, July 27 on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza. The Center’s All Abilities Celebration is a culmination of the Center’s Disability Pride Month celebration happening throughout July with a focus on amplifying people with disabilities’ voices and influence.

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Photo by Brian Gomez

The Center’s All Abilities Celebration showcases the talents and perspectives of each member of our community

Every year, the Center’s All Abilities Celebration proves to be a vibrant, inspiring and inclusive event, showcasing the talents and perspectives of each member of our community. Attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy live performances from artists who showcase the power of diversity in the arts and engage in interactive workshops that cater to various interests and abilities. Guests can also explore a variety of informational booths that highlight local community organizations that offer resources and opportunities for individuals with disabilities. American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation will be available throughout the event.

This event is presented in partnership with Orange County Arts & Disability whose mission is to provide arts, education and cultural opportunities by, with, and for people with disabilities, making the arts accessible to people of all abilities. A performance schedule is coming soon.

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Courtesy of

The Center’s All Abilities Celebration is a culmination of their Disability Pride Month celebration happening throughout July

In addition to the All Abilities Celebration, Segerstrom Center’s Disability Pride Month events feature a range of activities designed to engage and inspire. For Tuesday Night Dance in July, join the Center’s Studio D: Arts School for All Abilities faculty as they teach the fundamentals of ballet, all with a Studio D spin and accompanied by a live pianist. Dive into Swan Lake, waltz in Sleeping Beauty, or march in the Nutcracker as you learn choreography from classical story ballets.

Another exciting event is Silent Disco, taking place on Saturday, July 13. Silent Disco offers a fun opportunity where attendees can dance the night away with light-up headphones to a variety of music genres, including pop, hip-hop and electronic tunes. This unique experience is perfect for everyone – just bring your best dance moves.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is committed to fostering an inclusive environment where every individual feels welcomed and celebrated. They believe that the arts are a powerful tool for bringing people together and that everyone deserves the opportunity to experience the joy and inspiration that the arts provide.

Their annual All Abilities Celebration is a wonderful opportunity for our community to come together, learn and appreciate the special talents and perspectives that each individual brings. They invite everyone to join them in celebrating the remarkable diversity and creativity throughout Orange County.

For more information on Disability Pride Month events, visit

Julianne and George Argyros Plaza at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. For more information, visit

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Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar embraces “All the Pleasures” at 2024 Festival, continues through June 23

The Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar, Newport Beach’s only professional classical music performing organization, returns with a pleasurable 44th season. The 2024 Festival, themed “All the Pleasures” (named after the Purcell Ode featured in the series’ finale), focuses on music by a wide range of Baroque-era English composers, juxtaposed with pieces by their continental European predecessors and contemporaries. A highly enjoyable, as well as educational, boutique summer festival of accessible, smaller-scale concerts awaits. Specialist musicians present five concerts over eight days, at beautiful venues in Corona del Mar and Newport Beach.

Esteemed Baroque violinist Elizabeth Blumenstock directs the season, curating and leading all but one (the Monday recital) of the performances. She maintains a busy international schedule performing on the 17th century Guarneri violin, generously loaned by the Philharmonia Baroque Period Instrument Trust. In addition to her role as artistic director of the Baroque Music Festival since 2011, she serves as a concertmaster and soloist of Baroque orchestras nationwide and in Germany. Blumenstock’s choice of Baroque masterpieces for the 2024 Festival is as eclectic and entertaining as ever, ranging from Italian violin duos to a grand Handel choral work.

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Photo by Gary Payne Photography

Festival Orchestra led by Elizabeth Blumenstock

This 44th Festival – “All the Pleasures! The Italian Influence in London and Beyond” – is anchored by two Sunday afternoon concerts with the Festival Orchestra, joined for the finale by the Festival Chorus. For the opener, London Fog, Italian Sunshine, soloists from the ensemble bring out the southern sun (the influence of Italian music on London-based composers) in J.C. (“The London”) Bach’s Sinfonia Concertante for violin and cello, concerti grossi by Arcangelo Corelli, Francesco Geminiani (“La Follia” variations, after Corelli) and Charles Avison (inspired by Scarlatti), an overture by Handel’s close friend Dr. Maurice Greene, and a Handel organ concerto endearingly nicknamed “Cuckoo and Nightingale.”

Chamber ensembles and further soloists give three evening concerts between the larger-scale Sunday events. Monday evening’s intimate Time Stands Still: English Lute Songs recital highlights the excellent acoustics of St. Michael & All Angels Church, Corona del Mar. Then, the Festival presents two concerts at Corona del Mar’s Sherman Library & Gardens, a beloved venue since the first series in 1981. This year, musicians gather there on the Wednesday and Friday evenings for Nightingales in the Gardens (music for three violin soloists, and more) and Galante in the Gardens (Bach and late Baroque chamber music by Telemann and others), respectively.

The season will close with Handel & Purcell Choral Odes, showcasing each composer’s stunning vocal music, alongside instrumental selections. Countertenor Clifton Massey returns to the Festival (he last appeared in Bach’s Magnificat in 2019) for the familiar opening aria of Handel’s Ode for the Birthday of Queen Anne, “Eternal Source of Light Divine” (trumpet Kathryn Adduci) – a piece featured at many British royal weddings. Joining Clifton Massey are debuting soloists Nola Richardson (soprano), Gregório Taniguchi (tenor) and Jesse Blumberg (baritone).

Schedule of performances:

Wednesday, June 19, 7:30 p.m. – Sherman Library & Gardens, Corona del Mar

Nightingales in the Gardens

Gates open at 6:45 p.m. for complimentary wine in the Gardens, intermission with coffee & cookies and meet the musicians after the concert.

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NBFF announces their Automotive Short Film Competition

The Newport Beach Film Festival (NBFF) has announced their Automotive Short Film Competition. With the growing strength of the creator community online, there is a remarkable level of quality being achieved by passionate filmmakers all over the world who love cars, and the festival will be the first to celebrate this burgeoning shift in the sector.

NBFF has partnered with renowned creator Ant Anstead, who shares the same passion for great films. Anstead has hosted more than 25 TV shows with more than a decade in the industry. As an expert within the automotive space, he has written, produced and directed content that inspires fellow enthusiasts.

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Photos courtesy of NBFF

NBFF Automotive Short Film Competition judges – (L-R): Sung Kang, Emilia Hartford, Ant Anstead and Dan Mace

“We are thrilled to partner with Ant (Anstead),” said Gregg Schwenk, CEO and executive director of NBFF. “His vast array of knowledge and expertise of the automotive landscape is a great addition to this segment of the festival.”

“Cars remain a mainstay in great films, and it’s no coincidence that a consistent number of car movies are made,” said Anstead. “Films with iconic car scenes are ones you just never forget.”

NBFF, together with Anstead, challenges filmmakers to create and submit their short films using the inspiration “For The Love Of Driving.” The rules are designed for creativity; your film can take any direction you wish. It can be documentary style or scripted, shot on film or phone. Each film must be at least one minute long, but no longer than six minutes. Exclusively for the automotive competition, content that has been previously shared can also be submitted. All content must be royalty-free for usage, including music.

The deadline for submissions is July 14, 2024, and a reduced submission fee has been applied to this category for $25.*

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“Films with iconic car scenes are ones you never forget,” said Ant Anstead, who is partnering with NBFF on this film competition

All content submitted is done so in the knowledge it may be used in a television show and online to help share and promote the artists. The 10 finalists must be able to attend the Film Festival in person on October 18, 2024, where the festival will showcase those 10 films along with a Q&A session with each creator and a panel of notable judges.

Automotive short films “For the Love of Driving” can be submitted here *A limited number of fee waivers are available based on economic hardship.

Recognized as one of the largest luxury lifestyle film festivals in the U.S., the Newport Beach Film Festival brings an internationally curated collection of films and vibrant cultural gatherings to the beautiful Southern California coast. Committed to championing the work of original storytellers from around the globe, the festival celebrates contemporary screen culture and cinematic excellence, engaging the community in compelling conversations with filmmakers and artists. The Newport Beach Film Festival is sponsored in part by UCI Health, Los Angeles Times, Visit Newport Beach, Fashion Island, KIA and the City of Newport Beach. For festival passes and tickets, visit

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Irrelevant Week returns to Newport Beach, Wortmanns to be honored at Lowsman Banquet

The 257th pick in the 2024 National Football League (NFL) Draft, Jaylen Key, will be lauded with a week of attention, congratulations, and well-wishes by the NFL-sponsored Irrelevant Week Committee in Newport Beach. Led by Melanie Salata Fitch, daughter of the late former San Francisco 49ers football great Paul Salata, founder of the week-long celebration recognizing the last man standing in the annual draft, the event draws national attention.

Key will be feted with a week-long roster of events, tours, toasts and travel experiences throughout the week on the California Riviera, originally created by the late Salata under his well-known philosophy, “Do Something Nice For Somebody For No Reason.” Concluding the week, the traditional Lowsman Banquet brings together hundreds of sports personalities and lovers of the game for a lavish dinner hosted for many years by restaurateur Ron Salisbury at his legendary Cannery Restaurant on Newport Harbor. The big event takes place on June 25.

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Courtesy of Girls Inc.

John and Anne Wortmann will be honored at the Irrelevant Week’s Lowsman Banquet

This year, the Irrelevant Week Committee will honor Newport Beach locals John and Anne Wortmann with the Paul Salata “Hero Beyond The Hashmarks” Award, which will be presented at the banquet. The award was spearheaded by the league as a way to honor the legacy of Paul Salata with honorees selected based on their active association with community-based programs benefiting others, and advancing positive development for many diverse causes assisting the underserved. “Most important, the honorees selected must be “plain old good guys (and gals),” said Melanie Salata Fitch.

John and Anne Wortmann fit the bill. They are among Newport’s most visible and active community cheerleaders. John Wortmann, chairman of the board of Balboa Bay Club Governors, and member of the Newport Beach Commodores, along with wife Anne, 1976 Rose Queen and former Rams Cheerleader, function as a team working in support of many community endeavors. According to John Wortman, “Our litmus test has always been what is best for our family and our community of Newport Beach.”

To that end, the Wortmanns have supported Irrelevant Week with the Salata family for some 30 years. Additionally, they have shared their time, talent and treasure with nonprofits including Serving People In Need (SPIN), The Lifesavers Foundation of Newport Beach, The Ben Carlson Scholarship program and Newport Beach Jr. Guards, The Newport El Foundation and the Balboa Performing Arts Theatre Foundation. Most recently, they fronted the annual Balboa Bay Club 1221 Student Scholarship program, which has donated $1.7 million to date in grants for local Newport-Mesa Unified School District seniors heading to university.

To attend the Lowsman Banquet and support the Irrelevant Week mission, visit for more information on tickets and sponsorship availabilities.

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Outside SCR returns to Mission San Juan Capistrano for The Old Man and the Old Moon

Take a theatrical journey this summer when South Coast Repertory returns for a final summer at Mission San Juan Capistrano with The Old Man and The Old Moon, book, music and lyrics by PigPen Theatre Co. The Outside SCR offering, which performs outdoors under the stars, runs July 20 through August 11.

Directed by SCR Associate Artistic Director Kim Martin-Cotten, The Old Man and The Old Moon takes audiences on an epic adventure across land, sea and sky – all in the name of love. Indie-folk music and ingenious staging transform this tall tale into a thrilling theatrical event like no other.

The Old Man who keeps the moon filled with light wakes up one morning to find his wife has gone, lured away by a mysterious melody. In his quest to find her, he encounters colorful characters, gets caught in an apocalyptic storm and is swallowed by a giant fish. Can he find her before the moon runs out of light and the world plunges into darkness?

The Old Man and the Old Moon is recommended for ages 7 and older.

Photos courtesy of SCR

Director and SCR Associate Artistic Director Kim Martin-Cotton

“Audiences are in for a terrific adventure in the best traditions of a transformational experience this summer. It’s amazing to think Outside SCR is moving into its fourth season in partnership with Mission San Juan Capistrano,” Artistic Director David Ivers said.

The Old Man and the Old Moon is a beautiful, family-friendly, music-filled journey offering the finest of what has become so special about a night of theater under the stars. I’m thrilled Associate Artistic Director Kim Martin-Cotten is making her SCR directorial debut and I am confident her artistry will elevate the experience into an unforgettable gathering.”

The Old Man and The Old Moon came from the minds of seven budding theater artists when they were still students at Carnegie Mellon University. The seven – Alex Falberg, Ben Ferguson, Curtis Gillen, Ryan Melia, Matt Nuernberger, Arya Shahi and Dan Weschler – later founded PigPen Theatre Co. The second play the group wrote, The Old Man and The Old Moon, premiered off-Broadway in 2012. It later played the Williamstown Theatre Festival, Writers Theatre outside Chicago, The Old Globe, Kansas City Repertory and the Wallis Annenberg Center in Beverly Hills.

At each stop, it played to sold-out audiences, bringing critical acclaim for its folk music, innovative, use of low-tech materials, puppetry and storytelling combining wit and whimsy. In his New York Times review, Ben Brantley wrote, “This is a story of time and tides and quests, the sort of fable on which mythologies and religions are founded.”

The Old Man and the Old Moon is a magical adventure told by a shapeshifting indie-folk band that sails us across the sea, flies us into the stars and dives us into the belly of a giant fish – all in the pursuit of love,” Martin-Cotten said. “I am delighted we will be sharing this transformational tale in the gorgeous Mission setting for audiences of all ages.”

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Arya Shahi, one of the seven members of PigPen Theatre Co., which wrote “The Old Man and The Old Moon”

Martin-Cotten joined SCR in 2021 as associate artistic director and is the co-director of the Pacific Playwrights Festival. A producer, director, actor and educator who held the positions of artistic producer and associate director of New Works for Kansas City Repertory Theatre before coming to SCR, Martin-Cotten has directed The Moors, an eight-person Twelfth Night and a solo adaptation of Othello for Kansas City Repertory Theatre’s young company. Her other directing projects include The Dumbwaiter, Cabaret, Death of a Salesman, Proof and The Taming of the Shrew, among others. Martin-Cotten also served as project assistant to Anna Deavere Smith on her initial production of House Arrest First Edition at Arena Stage.

The cast features several SCR veterans, including Jess Andrews (Appropriate and The Little Foxes), Tommy Beck (A Christmas Carol), Huntington Beach native Armando Gutierrez (Million Dollar Quartet), Matt MacNelly (music director for Cambodian Rock Band and understudy for Million Dollar Quartet) and Joe Ngo (Cambodian Rock Band). It also features SCR newcomers Alex Lydon and Ana Marcu.

The design and creative team include Efren Delgadillo Jr. and Stephanie Bernardini, set design; Kish Finnegan, costume design; Lonnie Rafael Alcaraz, lighting design; Jeff Polunas, sound design; Michael Arden Larsen, associate director and movement coordinator and Matt Cotten, puppet designer and assistant director. Joanne DeNaut, CSA, is the casting director. Maisie Chan is the production manager, Kathryn Davies is the production stage manager, and Natalie Figaredo is the assistant stage manager.

Born out of the pandemic, Outside SCR began in 2021 as a way to safely return to live performances. It opened that summer with two plays – American Mariachi and You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown – alternating performances. Million Dollar Quartet followed in 2022 and La Havana Madrid last summer. It brings SCR’s productions to new communities and audiences.

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Be in Newport Beach this summer

Dive into summer fun in Newport Beach! The City of Newport Beach Recreation & Senior Services Department has everything to make a splash from exciting classes and camps to epic leagues and community events.

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Photos courtesy of Sherman Library

Take to the water

Kids of all ages can elevate their summer break with action-packed camps and classes:

–Score with local faves: Stay active with sports by EPC Playtime or soar through the air with Tumble-N-Kids gymnastics.

–Namaste with your mini-me: Bond in a Baby & Me Yoga class.

–Get messy and make memories: Unleash the inner artist in Messy, Messy Fun.

–Find their beat: Jam out with South Coast Music Together.

There’s plenty for adults to escape the heat or embrace the waves:

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Over the net?

–Brush up on your lingo: Learn a new language to impress your travel buddies.

–Find your groove: Keep your dance moves sizzling in a fun class.

–Catch a wave (or two): Shred the gnar with a killer surf camp.

Ready to register for a class? Click here for a full list of summer classes. Craving an unforgettable camp experience? There’s still time to snag a spot at

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Movie Mondays returns to the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza with favorite films under the stars

Segerstrom Center for the Arts has announced the return of Movie Mondays this summer on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza, providing free Movie Mondays 2024 opportunities for families to get together on Monday nights and enjoy a fabulous line-up of cinematic classics.

This year’s line-up will include The Muppet Movie on July 8, Pitch Perfect on July 15, Jurassic Park on July 22, 13 Going on 30 on July 29 and Back to the Future on August 5. So, grab your friends, family and popcorn, and enjoy a reel good time!

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Photo by Joesan Diche

Movie Monday, 2018

For more than 16 years, one of Segerstrom Center’s standout summer attractions has been the beloved Movie Mondays series. Taking place outdoors on Monday evenings throughout the summer season, these complimentary screenings under the starry sky have been delighting audiences since 2007. Whether you’re a devoted movie aficionado or simply seeking a lively evening out, Movie Mondays guarantees a diverse line-up of films that cater to patrons of all ages.

Movie showings begin at dusk (approx. 8 p.m.) on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza.

Guests are welcome to arrive at 5:30 p.m., with the movie starting at dusk (approximately 8 p.m.). Pre-show activities are available from 6-7:30 p.m. Seating will be first-come, first-served. Attendees are welcome to bring their own snacks, chairs, blankets or picnics. However, tables, BBQs, or large food set-ups are not permitted. Food trucks will be on site for meal purchases and George’’ Café will be open for beverage service. Outside alcohol is prohibited, but alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase at George’s Café for those ages 21 and above.

Closed captioning will be included at all showings.

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Courtesy of SCFTA

“The Muppet Movie”

July 8 – The Muppet Movie

Movie: The Muppet Movie (1979) Rating: G

Runtime: 97 minutes

Kermit and his newfound friends trek across America to find success in Hollywood, but a frog legs merchant is after Kermit.

Starring Jim Henson and Frank Oz

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Courtesy of SCFTA

“Pitch Perfect”

July 15 – Pitch Perfect

Movie: Pitch Perfect (2012) Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 112 minutes

Beca, a freshman at Barden University, is cajoled into joining the a cappella group, The Bellas, as they take on their male rivals in a campus competition.

Starring Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson and Britney Snow

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Courtesy of SCFTA

“Jurassic Park”

July 22 – Jurassic Park

Movie: Jurassic Park (1993) Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 127 minutes

A paleontologist touring an almost complete theme park is tasked with protecting a couple of kids after a power failure causes the park’s cloned dinosaurs to run loose.

Starring Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum

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Courtesy of SCFTA

“13 Going on 30”

July 29 – 13 Going on 30

Movie: 13 Going on 30 (2004) Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 98 minutes

Unpopular schoolgirl Jenna Rink makes an unusual wish on her birthday. Miraculously, her wish comes true, and the 13-year-old Jenna wakes up the next day as a 30-year-old woman.

Starring Jennifer Garner and Mark Ruffalo

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Courtesy of SCFTA

“Back to the Future”

August 5 – Back to the Future

Movie: Back to the Future (1985) Rating: PG

Runtime: 116 minutes

Marty McFly, a 17-year-old high school student, is accidentally sent 30 years into the past in a time-traveling DeLorean invented by his close friend, Doc Brown.

Starring Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd and Lea Thompson

Free Event – No RSVP; No reservation is required.

 Julianne and George Argyros Plaza is located at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. For more information, visit

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Compiled by Tom Johnson 

Police Beat derives from information in the log maintained at the front counter by the Newport Beach Police Department and required under CA Government Code Section 6254 (f). The press does not have access to written police reports.

Information in the police department log is deemed reliable and StuNewsNewport is not responsible for mistakes made available as public record by the Newport Beach Police Department.

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

Abbreviations sometimes used in Police Beat:

647f – Public Intoxication; DUI – Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs; NFA – No fixed address; RP – Reporting/Responsible Party; UTL – Unable to locate