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Volume 6, Issue 61  | July 30, 2021


Coming out of COVID has been “quite a ride” according to the mayor…and I agree

By AMY SENK

The Corona del Mar Residents Association met in person at the OASIS Senior Center last week for the first time since Spring 2020, and Newport Beach Mayor Brad Avery – the guest speaker – said that as mayor during and outside of COVID restrictions has been “quite a ride.”

Tourists have been flocking to the city, meaning hotel taxes and other revenue streams are strong, and city projects like the new Junior Guards headquarters building and library lecture hall are on track in partnerships with the community.

“We’re doing very well,” Avery said. “Newport Beach is an incredible destination.”

Coming Out Brad Avery

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Photos by Amy Senk

Newport Beach Mayor Brad Avery addresses the CdM Residents Association Meeting attendees at the OASIS Senior Center

The meeting also included an update from board member Ron Yeo, who described a new project that would create self-guided walking tours of Corona del Mar, possibly by teaming with the city’s existing MyNB smart phone app.

“It should be really fun,” he said.

Earlier this month, I attended another in-person meeting when Good Morning Corona del Mar held its monthly event at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club.

The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce hosts the meetings, which occur monthly and will be part of my regular routine, replacing the CdM Business Improvement District monthly meetings that have concluded with the sunsetting of that group. The Good Morning CdM meetings begin at 7:30 a.m. and feature coffee and muffins, along with a chance to hear updates from our elected leaders. Councilwoman Joy Brenner and Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley attended the July meeting, along with representatives for Congresswoman Michelle Steel, State Sen. Dave Min and Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris.

The July meeting’s guest speaker was Jacob Sanchez, public information officer for the California Highway Patrol, who discussed the danger of distracted driving, including talking or texting while behind the wheel.

Coming out Jacob Sanchez

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Jacob Sanchez, public information officer for the California Highway Patrol

He also discussed the May 21 shooting that killed 6-year-old Aiden Leos on the 55 freeway. Two people have been arrested and charged in the case, apparently the result of road rage.

Generally, he said that road rage seems to be at a higher level than ever, and he made some suggestions to avoid problems, and what to do if things escalate.

First, he said, if you cut someone off or maybe change lanes and have a close call, use the “Sorry, my bad” wave to apologize. “Ninety-five percent will flip you off and keep going,” he said.

If the person continues to drive in an aggressive or threatening way, he said, call 911 and take the first exit off the freeway. If you know of a nearby police or fire station, head there, but otherwise drive to a business that is almost always busy, like a Starbucks.

The chances are low that the person would continue to bother you at that point, he said, but if they are – don’t stop and confront them.

He added that if you can, get license plate information, even in a situation where it blows over. You can call the CHP after you get home and report the information, and officers can run the plates and get registration information and sometimes send a warning letter to the driver. 

• • •

Meanwhile, summer is in full swing in Newport Beach. The city calendar has weekend events for a movie in the park and a concert on the Civic Center Green – events that we all missed last year. I’ve been living in the Flower Streets, and this weekend I had several people ask me for advice on where to park because the Big Corona beach lot was full.

Coming out Bg Corona

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Big Corona has been crowded with a full parking lot, including this past Sunday when this photo was taken

Sure, summer traffic is as bad as it’s ever been, and it’s hard to find things like aloe vera at the local drug store, where tourists from places like Nashville are lining up for ice creams and sunscreens. But I’ll take it.

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Amy Senk has lived in Corona del Mar for 20+ years and was publisher of Corona del Mar Today, an online newspaper that ran daily for seven years. Senk, a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, is involved in the Corona del Mar Residents Association. She and her husband have two children attending college at the University of Missouri and Duke University. She is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.

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