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Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Rams reportedly roaming ‘round Newport Beach

Fair Game Tom NewKeep your eyes peeled for your Los Angeles Rams. Rumors abound that the Rams are staying in one of the major hotels in Newport Center for the next few weeks while in training camp at UCI.

That means you may be seeing them moseying about in the Fashion Island area catching a movie or visiting a restaurant or two during their downtime.

Kudos to the sales department at Visit Newport Beach for helping to secure that big piece of business. 

Remember, “heads in beds” supports the city through TOT taxes, fills our restaurants, stores and other venues with paying customers. Think of it this way, it’s money that residents would otherwise have to make up for needed city services.

And, in case you don’t know what kind of a job Visit Newport Beach does on an annual basis, here are a couple of numbers for your consideration. It wasn’t too long ago (maybe a decade or so ago) that a good year in room nights sold by VNB was 6,000-8,000 annually. In their just completed fiscal year, ending June 2019, that number has climbed to 111,000. That team is led by Michelle Donahue. Congrats to them.

And that my friends, is success!

• • •

It’s The Ultimate Cocktail War for the Literacy Project next Tuesday evening, July 30, at The Winery. Two sets of bartenders will pour for an hour each, the team filling the biggest tip jar wins.

In the blue corner (7-8 p.m.) are real estate agent Devon Wortmann, from Arbor Real Estate, and Joe Stapleton, the President of Spinnaker Investment Group.

In the red corner (6-7 p.m.) are Stark CEO Todd Vande Hei and Stark Head Trainer Nick Peralta.

All proceeds benefit the Literacy Project. The Winery is located at 3131 West Coast Highway.

Who knows if Joe can even pour, since he doesn’t even drink? The good news is that Devon’s father is John Wortmann, of Balboa Bay Club fame, so we know she knows her way around a bar or two.

Here’s the way it works, you buy a drink and then you tip, BIG, for the team you want to win.

• • •

The Friends of the Library Used Book Sale begins next Friday, August 2, for “Members Only” on the first day, from 1-4 p.m. It’s one of four sales the Friends hold throughout the year.

Day two, Saturday, August 3, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., doors open to the public and it’s “2 Bucks a Bag” all day.

It all takes place in the Friends Meeting Room at the Central Library.

• • •

Tomorrow morning, some three dozen paddlers will leave Catalina Island paddling toward Newport Beach in the invite-only “Ben Did Go 4.0” Paddle.”

The crossing is some 30 miles.

The event hopes to raise $40,000 for the Ben Carlson Memorial and Scholarship Foundation.

The plan is to head east around 5 a.m., hoping to arrive somewhere in the mid-afternoon range at the Ben Carlson statue next to the Newport Pier.

• • •

Huntington Beach City Councilman Mike Posey has announced his intentions to run for a seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors in, wait for it, 2022.

No reason not to be early.

Posey will run in District 2 which represents Huntington Beach, Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, Fountain Valley, Seal Beach, Los Alamitos, Stanton, Buena Park, La Palma and Cypress.

Mike stands for “fighting to stop all new county taxes, paying down debt, making County services more efficient and attracting private-sector jobs.”

He’s already gathering endorsements and running an active campaign. For more info, go to mikeposeyforsupervisor2022.com.

• • •

Gerardo Mouet, a member of the OC Fair & Event Center Board of Directors, will step down from his position on August 31.

He has served for the last eight years.