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Newport Beach


What’s opened, what’s closed for Presidents’ Day?

City Hall and most City facilities will be closed in observance of the Presidents’ Day holiday on Monday, Feb. 21.

Street Sweeping: There will be no street sweeping on Monday, Feb. 21. For the remainder of the week, street sweeping will be on its regular schedule.

Residential Trash Collection: Trash collection will remain on its regular schedule, Monday through Friday. Please set your carts curbside on your regular collection day.

Other closures include libraries, schools, banks and post offices. Stores, restaurants and malls, for the most part, will remain open.


School Notes

No changes to masking requirements, but OC Superintendents united in their efforts

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly announced earlier this week that while there are no changes to school masking requirements, it’s not a question of if, but when. Masking requirements for schools will be reassessed on February 28.

Dr. Ghaly did not identify a specific threshold for lifting the requirement but did say that the state will reassess case rates, positivity percentages, hospitalizations and vaccine rates.

Last week a coalition of Orange County superintendents, including Newport-Mesa Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith, issued a statement asking Gov. Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Public Health to announce a criteria for easing school masking requirements and other COVID-19 protocols based on countywide health data.

Here is the full statement from Orange County superintendents:

From the earliest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, Orange County’s 29 school districts banded together and coordinated closely with the OC Health Care Agency (HCA) to ensure the highest levels of safety for our students, staff and communities. This unified approach allowed us to rapidly share information and best practices as we endured four waves of the virus, multiple variants and a steady stream of new guidance from local, state and national agencies. It also positioned our schools as models for how to safely reopen – and stay open – for in-person instruction. Now, with two years of data points from which to draw, it is time to have a conversation about what comes next.

In Orange County and across the United States, COVID-19 case rates and hospitalizations are falling rapidly in the wake of the recent Omicron spike. Outcomes in other countries that have experienced Omicron suggest the worst of the pandemic is behind us, with many nations lifting restrictions. Even California has announced that it will allow its broad indoor mask mandate to expire after Feb. 15, and numerous experts believe we are now headed toward an endemic stage, in which we live with a diminished version of the virus. Based on these trends, and following discussions with our HCA partners, our coalition of Orange County superintendents is asking Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to publicly announce a reasonable timeline for easing school masking requirements and other restrictive protocols, using well-established countywide health metrics as the basis.

As school district leaders, we are legally required to follow public health directives set forth by the governor, the state’s public health department and the OC Health Care Agency. Any actions to the contrary risk school closures. Moreover, we believe that safety protocols such as face coverings, while sometimes polarizing, have proven effective in reducing school-based transmission, which in turn allowed our campuses to remain open. Yet these steps, including the masking rules, were not intended to be permanent adaptations to our environment. These policies were introduced to blunt waves of infections that threatened to overrun our health care systems and close our schools. Students and staff did their part – to extraordinary degrees. Now, we must acknowledge that changing circumstances and clear data trends warrant a re-examination of our approach to school safety, if not a full exit strategy and a return to more normal school operations.

We believe overall hospitalization rates and ICU capacities represent an accurate picture of the threat this virus poses to schools and communities, but we would defer to the expertise of the HCA and the CDPH to establish reliable benchmarks that can be used as the basis for easing restrictions. We also understand that there always exists the potential for new variants or viruses that may renew calls to flatten the curve.

From the onset of this public health crisis, the superintendents of Orange County have been clear-eyed and united behind the goal of providing safe, welcoming and equitable learning environments for students. Two years later, that remains unchanged, as does our commitment to working with our families, employees, public health partners and community members to move our county forward together.

Dual Immersion program for Spanish and Mandarin for incoming kindergartners

Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) offers Spanish and Mandarin Dual Immersion Programs to prepare the next generation of bilingual and biliterate global citizens. 

Applications for 2022-2023 incoming kindergarteners are open. Interested families should complete the online Dual Immersion Program application available on the Dual Immersion website

The Mandarin Immersion at College Park Elementary and Spanish Immersion at Whittier Elementary include everything a traditional class offers, but in both languages.

There are multiple educational and career benefits that multilingual students accrue, including:

–Academic achievement: Students attain high levels of academic achievement in both languages due to increased cognitive skills and problem-solving abilities.

–Bilingualism & biliteracy: Students acquire strategic thinking, listening,

speaking, reading and writing proficiency in both languages.

–Sociocultural competence: Students develop positive attitudes and

appreciation of world languages and cultures in our global society.

Applicants will be notified after May 1, 2022 of their child’s acceptance or waitlist placement.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

The landscape for luxury accommodations in town is changing as we speak, introducing the Pendry Newport Beach

Fair Game Toms new headshotEagle Four Partners has single-handedly changed the luxury resort make-up of Newport Beach in just the last 30 days. 

Already the proud owners of the Balboa Bay Resort, Eagle Four last month acquired the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa, with the promise of a sizable investment towards a re-brand to the all-new VEA Newport Beach. And then, this week, Eagle Four double-downed with their purchase of the Fashion Island Hotel and the announcement of a planned re-brand to the Pendry Newport Beach.

Those three properties, when fully operational, along with The Pelican Hill Resort, will arguably make Newport Beach the top millennial tourist destination on the West Coast.

Quite frankly, those in the know in tourism have to be excited.

Let’s review. First the VEA Newport Beach. According to Visit Newport Beach, the VEA property will “undergo a total top-to-bottom reimagination. Guests can look forward to new coastal-chic guest rooms, new suite categories, newly imagined dining concepts, a wellness-focused spa, a high-performance fitness center, expansive indoor and outdoor event spaces and a vibrant pool scene featuring regular live music performances, designer fashion.”

That will all be designed around the spectacular ocean views, as it sits atop the beautiful Newport Beach Country Club (also an Eagle Four property).

Now the Pendry Newport Beach. This off-shoot of Montage Hotels & Resorts caters to the luxury traveler with the promise of a unique boutique property that elevates design and service.

Fair Game Pendry SNN 2.18

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Courtesy of Pendry Hotels & Resorts

A rendering of the Fashion Island Hotel reimagined with the Pendry flag atop

Here, that means “approximately 295 guestrooms, including 82 suites, each with floor-to-ceiling windows that open to step-out balconies or private patios with ocean, harbor and bay views. The hotel will deliver three unique lounge, restaurant and bar experiences – including a pool, sundeck and cabanas, in addition to a private membership club focused on creating community, delivering bespoke experiences, and connecting a diverse group of people from different backgrounds and industries.” 

And if you want to see and understand the unique visions and concepts behind the designs going into the Pendry Newport Beach, I invite you to visit Studio Munge, who will handle the interior designing; WATG, the company behind the overall architecture; and Burton Studio, the landscape architect.

You’ll begin to understand just how impressive it should be.

Timing: VEA Newport Beach is planned to open in Spring 2022, while Pendry Newport Beach will open in Summer 2023.

And finally, for you naysayers who might argue, “oh no, not more tourism!” Let me remind you, TOT (Transient Occupancy Tax) is the third largest tax generator in Newport Beach. It pays for things like public safety and potholes, etc. It’s collected from the guests who stay in our resorts. The tax is calculated on room rate, so that means when all of these rooms come online, the City of Newport Beach coffers are in for some very good years.

And for that, we can thank Eagle Four Partners (Kevin Martin, Todd Pickup, Kory Kramer, Rick Weiner and Joe Moody) for their vision and for their investment! 

• • •

This won’t show up in today’s Police Files, but a truly spectacular piece of police work between Newport Beach PD and the LA County Sheriffs took place Tuesday night in the Port Streets.

As is commonplace these days, a burglary gang/group had been organized and hitting various cities throughout Southern California in recent weeks and perhaps months.

The LA Sheriffs had established a tail on them and little did they know it, but they were being watched from 7,000’ above from an LA Sheriff’s airplane. The group had moved into Newport Beach with the intent to commit crime.

NBPD officers and Sheriffs’ members were notified of a burglary in progress and responded. The gang of suspects fled in two vehicles, both under pursuit, with one abandoning their vehicle a short ways away. 

The first car’s passengers were all tracked down and captured by police, while the second vehicle shortly thereafter was apprehended in Huntington Beach.

Everyone was arrested, booked and taken off the street.

This, incidentally, was the second burglary gang busted in Newport Beach within days of each other, as NBPD officers, with the help of a dog, arrested four South Americans in the act last Saturday. The four had broken into a Newport Coast home and attempted to also flee.

Again, all arrested and jailed.

Kudos to our men and women in blue. They continue to work our streets, keeping our city safe and our crime figures down.

• • •

WAKE UP! Newport has breakfast with Mayor Kevin Muldoon planned for the Thursday, March 3 meeting at the Newport Beach Public Library, beginning with a 7:15 a.m. Continental breakfast, followed by the program from 7:45-8:30 a.m.

Kevin will offer his State of the City and discuss goals and projects planned for the city this year.

Muldoon was elected to City Council in 2014 to represent District 4 and reelected in 2018 for a second term. He’s currently serving as mayor for the second time. He’s also termed-out and is expected to be a candidate for the OC Supervisor District 5 seat primary race in June.

WAKE UP! Newport is free, but attendees are asked to make reservations at www.newportbeach.com for seating and food considerations.

• • •

The Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce is less than a week out for their 2022 Economic and Financial Update. Christopher Schwarz, Ph.D., the Associate Professor of Finance and Faculty Director for the Center of Investment and Wealth Management at UCI’s Paul Merage School of Business, will be the keynote.

The meeting takes place via Zoom at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 23. It will be broadcast to some 20+ chambers and business-member groups throughout Orange County.

For more info or to make reservations, go to www.newportbeach.com. The update is free.

• • •

Clarification: A story last Friday by Sara Hall contained the following: “During a straw vote to maintain Banning Ranch in the Housing Element Update inventory and not count it towards RHNA, there was a vote of 6-1 with Council Member (Joy) Brenner voting no; however, during the Closed Session Report, it was noted that she changed her vote to affirmative.” 

Councilperson Brenner offered the following for changing her dissent to unanimous approval: “In this case, there were no other good options to keep our city from receiving huge penalties from the State of California.”


Take Five: Meet Walter Stahr, bestselling author and Newport Beach resident

By AMY SENK

Bestselling and award-winning author Walter Stahr’s latest book, to be released next week, is a biography of Salmon Chase, Lincoln’s rival for the Republican nomination in 1860 who was in the center of the fight for racial justice in the Civil War era. Stahr’s previous historical biographies also have examined the lives of important but lesser understood subjects, like William Henry Seward and John Jay and have received praise from historians like Doris Kearns Goodwin. He also lives in Newport Beach, has strong family ties to the community – especially our library, where he will speak about his new book on February 24. I caught up with him to learn more. 

Take Five Walter Stahr

Courtesy of https://walterstahr.com/media-room/

Walter Stahr

Q: How do you go about finding the subjects of your books, and then how to you go about researching? Can you describe your writing process?

A: In choosing subjects, I look for important Americans who need better biographies. Before I tackled John Jay, for example, the most recent biography of Jay was from 1935; it was out of print and had serious gaps. My research process involves lots and lots of reading, both primary and secondary sources. I use secondary sources to point me to primary sources that I might otherwise have missed. To some extent I can do research through the internet. The Salmon Chase papers at the Library of Congress, for example, are available on the library’s website. But to some extent, research involves travel. For the Seward book, for example, I spent time in small libraries in upstate New York to look at family letters and local newspapers. When I turn to writing chapters, I try to stick close to the person and to the primary sources. Too many biographies, in my view, are too ready to accept memoirs, written years later. I am much more interested in the letters and newspapers from the time of the events.

Q: If you could spend an evening hanging out with three historical figures, who would you pick and why?

A: I would love to spend a few hours with Lincoln, Seward and Chase. Many of those who knew Lincoln best, wrote that however hard one tried to capture him on paper, it was impossible. His stories on paper are pale reflections, I think, of what it would have been like to see and hear him tell one of his stories in person. Lincoln and Seward spent much time together, one on one, for Lincoln was a frequent visitor to Seward’s house, just across the street from the White House. Lincoln and Chase were not as close – Chase was not as gregarious or sociable. Yet the more time I spent with Chase, reading his diaries and letters, the more I liked him; and I realized that he and Lincoln did like and respect one another, although they sometimes disagreed.

Take Five Salmon P. Chase book cover

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Courtesy of https://walterstahr.com/media-room/

“Salmon P. Chase: Lincoln’s Vital Rival” is Walter Stahr’s most recent historical biography

Q: Can you tell me more about your new book coming out in February?

A: My new book is a biography of Salmon P. Chase, Secretary of the Treasury during the Civil War and then Chief Justice of the United States. Although his work in those two positions was important, I argue that his MOST important contribution to American history was BEFORE the Civil War, for Chase was a key figure, perhaps THE key figure, in turning anti-slavery into a powerful political party. Abraham Lincoln could never have been elected president, in 1860, without the groundwork that Chase did in creating the Republican Party, and before that the Liberty and Free Soil parties.

Q: Your reviews are very impressive. Can you tell me about one that stands out or meant the most to you?

A: Perhaps the review that meant the most was right at the start. I talked with Ron Chernow after a book event for his Hamilton book, asked whether he would be willing to write something short for the cover of my forthcoming Jay book. At that time, I was utterly unknown as an author, and I was publishing with a small British firm, not a major American firm. He read the Jay book and wrote a beautiful short comment, saying that I had written a book in the spirit of Jay, fair and thorough.

Q: I’ve seen your letters to the editor in various publications. Do you read and write all the time?

A: I am active, right now, in opposing the proposed change to the Newport Beach charter, to create a more powerful mayor, so I will be writing and speaking against that. I am also writing a proposal for a new biography, subject to be revealed in due course. I have not been active in city politics before, but I strongly oppose the proposed charter change, to create a far more powerful mayor in Newport Beach. Our current system, with seven members of the city council, one of whom serves each year as the ceremonial mayor, works quite well. A mayor elected for four years, who could run again and serve eight years, with essentially complete control over the council’s agenda, would turn us into a mayor-dominated city. 

~~~~~~~~

Amy Senk is a long-time resident of Corona del Mar and a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.

Editor’s Note: For information on the February 24 Library Live event, presented by the Newport Beach Public Library Foundation, visit www.nbplf.foundation/programs/library-live/.


Love is in the air

Love is in the air

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Photo by Chris Crosson (Instagram @thesandcasltekit) 

Chris Crosson does it again during Valentine’s Week


Golden glow

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

The beauty of the golden California coast


BREAKING: Fashion Island Hotel purchased, to be rebranded Pendry Newport Beach

By GARY SHERWIN

Local investment firm Eagle Four Partners today announced that they have purchased the former Fashion Island Hotel and will rebrand it as the Pendry Newport Beach, part of the Montage International chain.

It will open in Summer 2023 after a significant renovation.

The acquisition is one of the most remarkable tourism stories to have hit Newport Beach given that Eagle Four, with offices in Newport Center, now owns three of the most exclusive hotel properties in the city as well as the Newport Beach Country Club. The company also has other holdings as well, including the Denver Sheraton, one of that city’s largest hotels.

Earlier this year, the company announced the purchase of the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa with Lyon Living and launched a significant multi-million luxury repositioning of the property which is now called VEA Newport Beach. It is currently under construction with a completion date scheduled for this Spring.

Pendry is a relatively new brand with six other properties in the country, two of which are in San Diego and West Hollywood. It is a part of the same brand that flags the Montage Laguna Beach, one of the most fashionable luxury properties in Orange County and is well known for their exceptional service standards.

“We have had incredible growth with Pendry this past year, opening hotels from coast to coast in some of America’s most vibrant destinations,” said Alan J. Fuerstman, founder, chairman and CEO of Montage International. “Now we have an irreplaceable location for Pendry Newport Beach and an opportunity to bring the Pendry experience ‘home’ to Orange County where both the Montage and Pendry brands originated.”

The Pendry brand brings the service and luxury standards originated in Montage to a more urban hotel setting. The new Newport Beach property will remain as a hotel retaining its 295 rooms including 82 suites, many with ocean views.

The hotel was sold by the Irvine Company which built the property originally as a Four Seasons before going independent more than a decade ago. It closed in Spring 2020 at the start of the pandemic.

The new Pendry will offer three unique lounge, restaurant and bar experiences including a pool, sundeck and cabanas, in addition to a new exclusive private club focused on creating community, delivering bespoke experiences.

It will also continue to be a major player in the city’s meetings and events industry with 14,000 square feet of meeting space.

But make no mistake, this is a remarkable story of a group of local Newport Beach business leaders who in the midst of the pandemic believed in the future of the city and doubled down on its hospitality investment. One major hotel purchase with the Marriott is significant. Buying a second local luxury property less than a year later is utterly amazing.

Led by Kevin Martin, Todd Pickup, Kory Kramer, Rick Weiner and Joe Moody, Eagle Four Partners are now clearly the major hospitality players in the city with not only two Newport Center hotels, but also the Balboa Bay Resort and Balboa Bay Club and the rebuilt Newport Beach Country Club.

“As local owners, we are thrilled to be the new stewards of the former Fashion Island Hotel at the heart of Newport Beach. We are dedicated to continually investing in Newport Beach and elevating the hospitality experience of our neighbors and guests,” said Martin.

“We are grateful to the Irvine Company for entrusting us with this responsibility and sharing our vision as we collaborate with Montage International to create something extraordinary,” said Kramer.

With the recent investment in VEA, the Balboa Bay Resort and now Pendry, Newport Beach will be an even stronger Southern California destination market leader in luxury hospitality, along with Pelican Hill which remains with the Irvine Company.

Over the last couple of years, Eagle Four has single handedly reinvented the Newport Beach luxury hotel experience and instead of fearing COVID and its impacts, the firm stayed local and made a real substantial commitment in its future. 

It’s a remarkable entrepreneurial story that could only happen in Newport Beach.

Gary Sherwin is President & CEO of Visit Newport Beach and Newport Beach & Company.


ENC to hold Composting 101 program

Join the Environmental Nature Center (ENC) on Saturday, Feb. 26 at 1 p.m. for a composting discussion and demonstration. Master Gardener Kelly Christensen will lead the program and provide handouts.

A new state law, Senate Bill 1383 requires all California residents and businesses to recycle organic waste, including food waste and green waste, in addition to standard recycling materials. The rules aim to reduce organic waste sent to landfills by 75% by 2025, as a strategy to address climate change and reduce the impacts on landfills. As organic waste decomposes in landfills it emits methane, a highly polluting greenhouse gas.

ENC to hold Composting pail

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Courtesy of ENC

Learn how to compost your own green waste and create your own compost

In Newport Beach, the Landscape and Food Waste Recycling Cart Rollout has begun. Residents are receiving new, green-lid carts for recycling yard waste, food waste and other biodegradable materials. The newly expanded recycling program includes an optional two-gallon pail to collect organic materials (food scraps) in the kitchen.

Learn how to compost your own green waste, and create your own compost which can be utilized in your yard to do the following:

–enrich the soil.

–help your soil retain moisture.

–suppress plant diseases and pests.

–reduce the need for chemical fertilizers.

–encourage the production of beneficial bacteria and fungi that break down organic matter to create humus, a rich nutrient-filled material.

This program is for adults. Register at

https://encenter.org/events/composting-101/.

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


New library planned for Peninsula, trustees seeking input through survey

The City of Newport Beach is planning to replace the Balboa Branch Library with a new facility in 2025, and the Board of Library Trustees is seeking input from members of the community to help shape the plan for the new Branch Library.

The online survey can be viewed here or on the NBPL website at www.newportbeachlibrary.org.

Printed versions of the survey will be available at the Balboa Branch, as well as the Central Library, Mariners Branch Library and Corona del Mar Branch Library for those who cannot participate online. Once completed, print surveys can be submitted to library staff or dropped in any library book return.

The Newport Beach Public Library is the cultural heart of the community, serving more than one million patrons each year. They are an essential provider of books, information and technology, through the Central Library and their three branches: Mariners, Balboa and Corona del Mar. The library is a place for reading, researching, studying, meeting friends, enjoying cultural arts programs, attending lectures, community meetings, writing workshops, book clubs, children’s programs and much more. Their services are available both in person and online at www.newportbeachlibrary.org.


City of Hope Orange County congratulates 2022 Physicians of Excellence

City of Hope is answering a call to provide highly specialized cancer care to Orange County, delivering innovative clinical trials, pioneering treatments, nationally recognized compassionate care and top clinical experts to treat even the most aggressive cancers. Because when you have cancer, you want everything possible to treat it, especially hope.

Among City of Hope’s extraordinary cancer experts are the physicians recognized by the Orange County Medical Association (OCMA) as Physicians of Excellence for 2022.

City of Hope physicians

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Photos courtesy of City of Hope Orange County

(L-R) Nishan Tchekmedyian M.D; Hang T. Dang, D.O., FACOS, FACS and Wade Smith, M.D.

Nishan Tchekmedyian, M.D. – Recently named Regional Medical Director for City of Hope Orange County, Dr. Tchekmedyian is a board-certified medical oncologist and hematologist who has led innovative research in immunotherapy for advanced prostate cancer and a new targeted therapy for a rare mutation seen in lung and other cancers. Dr. Tchekmedyian has received numerous honors for his research and high-quality, patient-focused care. He practices at City of Hope Huntington Beach and City of Hope Irvine Sand Canyon.

Hang T. Dang, D.O., FACOS, FACS – Dr. Dang is a fellowship-trained breast surgical oncologist with aesthetic fellowship experience who focuses on the treatment of benign and malignant breast diseases at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. Dr. Dang provides high-quality, patient-focused and personalized cancer care. She has significant experience educating women about breast cancer and is active in numerous professional organizations. She practices at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island.

Wade Smith, M.D. – Dr. Smith is a board-certified medical oncologist who specializes in breast cancer treatment and is the Director of Clinical Research at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. He is an expert in immunotherapy, especially for the treatment of chemotherapy-resistant breast and other cancers. Dr. Smith is a frequent speaker on metastatic breast cancer and remains heavily involved in educating his community on breast cancer awareness/early detection. He practices at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. 

Thank you, OCMA, for recognizing physicians who bring a higher level of advanced cancer care to Orange County. They are the future of hope.

City of Hope is redefining the delivery of advanced cancer care as its Irvine cancer center nears completion. Lennar Foundation Cancer Center will be a focal point for innovation, providing patients access to the expertise of more than 400 physicians and 1,000 researchers and scientists who are focused on one thing – ending cancer.

The comprehensive cancer center and academic center will offer unmatched expertise in treatment and research. Distinguishing services include access to highly specialized cancer care experts, Phase I-IIl clinical trials, an array of treatment options for eradicating the most aggressive cancers, highly targeted genomics, precision medicine and nationally recognized supportive care programs.

Orange County’s only specialty cancer hospital exclusively focused on treating and curing cancer will open at the Irvine site in 2025. 

In addition to the cancer campus, City of Hope is developing a care network that expands access to its services. City of Hope’s four current clinical locations – two in Newport Beach, Huntington Beach and Irvine, already deliver many advanced treatments to Orange County residents.

Visit www.CityofHope.org/OC to learn more.


Now that’s what I call a Jog-a-Thon! Annual fundraising run returns to Harbor View Elementary

By AMY SENK

Harbor View Elementary School held its Jog-a-Thon fundraiser last Tuesday, Feb. 8, marking the first time the entire school body and parents were on campus together for an event since before COVID.

“The sense of community and togetherness – we’ve missed it for so long,” said Parent Faculty Organization Co-president Ashley Carlton. “It’s the first time we’ve all been together on campus in two years. It’s special to watch this one.”

Jog-a-Thons raise money through sponsorships and by having the participants collect pledges – lump sums or a specific amount for each lap the students run during their 20-minute slots. Youth participate by grade level, running in two circular tracks in the grass by the Goldenrod Avenue’s school’s upper playground. This year’s goal was $70,000.

Now that's what firefighters

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Photos courtesy of Anne Kittleson

Newport Beach Firefighters come out to support Harbor View’s Jog-a-Thon

The school’s first Jog-a-Thon was held in 2009, when I was a PFO member with a sixth grader and a kindergartner at the school. Back then, volunteers raised about $60,000, kids had fun, and the event became a school standard, ultimately popping up on other elementary school campuses. By the second year, firefighters from the Corona del Mar station stopped by and gave high-fives, and a few weeks later, the school’s principal honored her promise to be doused with Gatorade to celebrate the kids’ efforts.

The Gatorade thing was a big deal. Not long after, a new principal was being recruited, and parents gathered with district officials and wrote on posters what characteristics they sought for this new hire. Being willing to be dunked after the Jog-a-Thon was at the top of the list.

I decided I was long overdue to pop in on a Jog-a-Thon, and I immediately saw some changes. The kids were wearing racing bibs, and their laps were being tracked electronically, like they were running a professional race. We used to use sharpies and make marks as they rushed past. Mother’s Market was there as a sponsor, along with several other businesses. There was a step-and-repeat style backdrop for photo ops and the sound system blaring pop music was top notch. It was impressive.

Now that s what joggers

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Harbor View’s joggers running laps

But some things were the same. The CdM firefighters were there, and the kids boasted about who would run the most laps. I looked back at my CdM Today archives of Jog-a-Thon coverage, and I found two students bragging about running more laps than anyone in the whole school. “One hundred,” one said. “Twenty million,” his friend countered.

This year, the same.

“I’m faster than him,” James Gabriel, 7, a first grader said, pointing to his classmate, Jakey Okun, also 7.

“No, no, no, no, no, no!” Jakey replied. Then they began discussing who had more sprays with a water bottle during their laps.

It was great to see everyone, from Board Trustee Karen Yelsey to Principal Gabriel Del Real to parent volunteers, including PFO Co-president Moriya Bodie. I caught up with old friends, chatted with the firefighters, saw some of the same teachers who taught my kids, and enjoyed the sunshine and exuberance. 

Now that s what Del Real

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Harbor View Principal Gabriel Del Real showing his school spirit

The Jog-a-Thon has always been fun. This year’s somehow seemed bigger and better in so many ways.

• • •

Other CdM observations – now that Chipotle has opened, many of us were surprised that the mural they’d painted on the building’s side had been painted over. Why the whitewash? Why no mural? I’ve written in the past about CdM residents’ love of the mural and this seemed odd.

I reached out to a company spokeswoman who didn’t explain why one version was painted over, but said they were in the process of “making adjustments to this location including the final artwork for the mural.

“You’ll see the complete aesthetic within the next 30 days,” she said. 

~~~~~~~~

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.


Register with your love and save

Spirit Run is celebrating Valentine’s Day with a limited time event called “Sweetheart Deal” with discounted pricing for adults. Two adults who register together for the “Sweetheart Deal” by Friday, Feb. 18 each save 25% off the regular entry fees.

Register with your love couple

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Courtesy of Spirit Run

Register as a couple for the Spirit Run and receive a “Sweetheart Deal”

Here are the steps to register for the “Sweetheart Deal”:

1. Click on the Register Now button at www.newportspiritrun.org/registration.

2. Enter the data fields (e.g., name, email, date of birth, etc.) for yourself.

3. Scroll down and select “Add Another Registrant.”

4. Enter the data fields for the second adult.

5. Scroll down to find “Multi Person Pricing.”

6. Select Sweetheart Deal from the drop-down menu.

This is the largest discount Spirit Run offers. So, celebrate love and fitness with your sweetheart with Spirit Run!

This year’s Spirit Run takes place on Sunday, March 27. For event details, visit www.newportspiritrun.org.

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Spirit Run.


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members: 

I’d like to recognize the great work from our local fire agencies to bring the brush fire under control that broke out Thursday, Feb. 10 in Laguna Beach near the Emerald Bay area. The Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) was the lead agency responding to the fire, assisted by the Newport Beach Fire Department, which dispatched five engines, along with other teams from nearby cities and agencies who battled the 150-acre blaze. 

Thankfully there was no loss of life or property damage from the Emerald Fire, but it did serve as a reminder of the fire dangers present in our region after another relatively dry winter. While this week’s unseasonably hot weather and Santa Ana winds were factors in the quick spread of the fire, the underlying dry brush conditions remain. As OCFA Chief Brian Fennessy said to the news media on Thursday, “We no longer have a fire season, we have a fire year.”

I encourage all our residents, and especially those in fire-prone areas of the city, to review the Ready Newport Beach emergency preparedness guide published by the Newport Beach Fire Department. The guide includes information on how to prepare for a variety of natural and man-made disasters, including the three main steps to prepare for a wildfire: creating a family evacuation plan, assembling an emergency supply kit and completing a family communication plan. The guide also offers tips on how to create a fire-resistant buffer around your home by using less-flammable construction materials and fire-safe landscaping techniques. 

To receive emergency alert notifications in the event of a fire or other disaster, sign up for the Alert OC notification system and Newport Beach’s Nixle alerts, where you can customize the type of alerts you would like to receive, including voicemail, text or email. 

And for those who would like hands-on training to help yourself, your family, and your neighbors in the event of a crisis or disaster, I invite you to sign up for the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program offered in the spring by the Newport Beach Fire Department. 

Rollout of Expanded Recycling Program Continues 

The distribution of new, green-lid carts for recycling organic materials (yard waste, food waste and other biodegradable items) is underway through the end of March. Pickup of organic recycling will begin the week after the organics carts are delivered on the same day as trash and standard recycling are collected.

For information on the state-mandated organics recycling program, utilize the following resources: 

Click here for a short video on how to separate and recycle organic waste. 

–Visit www.newportbeachca.gov/recycle to find out when the organics recycling carts will arrive in your neighborhood (use the search function at the top of the page). 

–Read through our Frequently Asked Questions document for answers to common questions and concerns. 

–Collection days have changed for about 14,000 households. To find out your trash and recycling pickup day, go to www.newportbeachca.gov/findmycollectionday.

–Street sweeping days have also been adjusted in the neighborhoods with collection day changes. These neighborhoods include portions of the Balboa Peninsula (21st Street to G Street) and Corona del Mar (north of Coast Highway), Irvine Terrance, the Port Streets and the north tip of Newport Heights. These changes will avoid conflicts, address parking conditions and maintain street sweeping effectiveness. For maps and information, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/2022sweeping or call the city’s Utilities Department at 949.644.3011. 

Council Planning Session Outlines Goals, Priorities 

On January 29, the City Council conducted its annual planning session to outline city goals and priorities for the coming fiscal year. This is an important workshop, held every year in January, which kicks off preparation of the new fiscal year budget and sets spending priorities for new programs and facilities, neighborhood improvements and more. The planning session covered the current fiscal year budget, projections for the 2022-2023 fiscal year, expenditures, infrastructure and capital improvements such as the planned Library Lecture Hall and Jr. Lifeguard Headquarters. The planning session can be viewed at this link

Fortunately, there are several positive financial trends in Newport Beach, including higher-than-expected revenues in property tax, sales tax and hotel tax, which have generated a surplus that we will use to pay down debt, expand our efforts to address homelessness, and fund additional infrastructure maintenance and improvement projects. I had the pleasure of giving a summary of the planning session to Speak Up Newport on February 9, and you can watch a video of that presentation at this link

Residents Encouraged to Apply for Aviation, General Plan Committees 

Aviation Committee. The city is seeking community representatives from Council District 1 to fill an unscheduled vacancy on the Aviation Committee. If you are a resident of District 1 and are interested in applying, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy for more information. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. 

General Plan Update Steering Committee. The city is seeking community representatives for three open seats on the reestablished General Plan Update Steering Committee. If you are interested in applying, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy for more information. The deadline to apply is 12 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 16. 

COVID-19 Cases in Newport Beach 

As of February 10, the total cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Newport Beach was 8,706, an increase of 105 cases since February 3. The total number of cases in Orange County as of February 10 was 530,036, an increase of 8,605 cases since February 3. The number of recovered COVID-19 patients countywide as of February 10 was 461,222. These figures are provided to Orange County by the California Department of Public Health. 

Homelessness Update 

–City Net, Newport Beach’s contract social services agency, assisted a couple with their move into permanent supportive housing in Costa Mesa. The couple lived in their vehicle for a year in Newport Beach before they enrolled into City Net’s services. City Net provided a new mattress and other household items for their new home. The couple now has access to on-site, supportive senior care services. 

–City Net toured a senior apartment building with a woman who was awarded an Emergency Housing Voucher. Emergency Housing Vouchers are funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and allow people to pay affordable rent based on their fixed incomes. Nine people experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach have been awarded vouchers. The voucher program is administered by the Orange County Housing Authority. City Net is assisting Newport Beach clients with completing the necessary paperwork, obtaining bank statements, touring potential rental apartments and more. 

–Seventeen people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter. 

–City Net enrolled a person into their services and completed a Vulnerability Index Assessment and a Housing Assessment. City Net utilizes the Vulnerability Index Assessment to screen clients on a number of factors to determine proper placement in the county’s Continuum of Care system. Assessment factors include age, health issues and length of time being unsheltered. 

–City Net transported a client to the DMV to obtain a new photo ID.

To donate to those experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach, visit our Good Giving Program web page.

Volunteers Needed for Homeless Point in Time Count 

Sign up to help shape homeless services in Orange County for the next several years as part of the Point in Time Count, February 22 through February 24. Point in Time is a biennial count of people experiencing homelessness on a given night. The count provides vital information that helps the county better understand homelessness in the community and guides the way the county and its partners respond to homelessness in Orange County. 

Volunteer opportunities are available leading up to the event and during the Point in Time Count event. Sign up at www.everyonecountsoc.org/.

Testing and Vaccination Resources 

Self-collection, at-home COVID-19 Test Kits are available at no cost to people who work or live in Orange County and can be ordered online at https://ochealthinfo.com/covidtest. In addition, free tests are now available from the federal government through www.COVIDtests.gov or by calling 800.232.0233. You can order up to four rapid tests to be sent to your home address, which will be mailed at no cost through the U.S. Postal Service within seven-12 days. 

Vaccines continue to be widely available throughout Orange County for walk-in, same day and future appointments. Individuals who are not yet vaccinated or boosted against COVID-19 or are eligible for a third dose (due to immunocompromise conditions) are encouraged to visit a local pharmacy or healthcare provider, or go online to www.Vaccines.gov, https://MyTurn.ca.gov, or https://Othena.com, to schedule a vaccination appointment. For more information on COVID-19 information and resources, including case counts, vaccination and testing in Orange County, visit https://ochealthinfo.com/covid

City Bridge Maintenance 

A city contractor will be conducting routine maintenance on Newport Beach bridges starting this week. Bridges at Jamboree Road, 38th Street, Lido Island, Balboa Island, Bonita Canyon, and Bison Avenue and the Goldenrod Footbridge will be targeted for repairs over the next two months. Work primarily consists of sealing and repairing concrete. Most of the work will be occurring under the bridges and in the sidewalk areas but brief traffic interruptions may be required.

Beginning February 14, the contractor will be working under the Balboa Island Bridge to seal and repair concrete. No vehicle traffic interruptions will be needed for this portion of the work, but boaters are urged to use extra caution when navigating under the bridge. 

Sports Field Renovations 

The city’s Public Works Department performs athletic field renovation work twice a year, in the summer and winter, to keep fields looking new and performing well prior to the busy youth sports recreation season. This work includes dethatching, aeration, leveling, organic fertilization, seeding and topdressing and sod work for selected fields. Recently, two major athletic field renovations were completed at Irvine Terrace Park and Bonita Creek Park. The renovations involved cutting and removal of the damaged turf, grading and installation of sod, and seeding and topdressing the balance of the fields. Crews installed 40,000 square feet of sod at Irvine Terrace and 10,000 square feet of sod at Bonita Creek. On average, the city renovates 26 fields (1.8 million square feet) bi-annually. The city appreciates the patience of our residents as we create and maintain world-class athletic fields. 

Editor’s Note: Stu News received City Manager’s Updates on Friday, Feb. 11 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha’ gonna do when they come for YOU!

Fair Game Toms new headshotTwice a week, we here at Stu News diligently travel over to the Newport Beach Police Department to see our friends at the front desk and pick up the arrest records.

Listing the arrests is something so many of our readers tell us they love about Stu News.

But, to be honest, in the recent times of COVID, with many people staying home and I guess providing unintended security to their domain, it seems like arrest records have been much quieter. And that seems, without any scientific studies on our part, to be across the board with most categories of arrests.

That seemed to change this past week. 

In Sunday’s records, three arrests carried bails of $1M, with two related to the manufacturing of drugs and one for grand theft. Ten others had bails of $50,000 or more. That’s a lot of big crime.

Now don’t get me wrong, our City remains tremendously safe. So, no need to worry about going out.

But as I bring this up, it might be worth reminding everyone that once a year the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce puts on the Police Appreciation Breakfast as a thank you to our men and women in blue.

This year is the 49th Annual and will be held at the Hyatt Regency John Wayne Airport on March 31 from 7:15-9 a.m.

I know it’s a ways off, but here’s something to consider, Dateline’s Keith Morrison, that’s right, the one with the distinctive voice, is the special emcee. 

It’ll sell out, so if you want in, now’s the time. Go to www.newportbeach.com.

• • •

It’s that time in high school sports when the sports programs segue from Winter to Spring sports. However, before we fully get there, there are multiple local teams that have moved on to the CIF-SS Playoffs. Here’s a recap:

Girls Soccer playoffs Division 1 first round games kicked off last Saturday with Newport Harbor beating Chaminade, 1-0; they’ll play Capistrano Valley at home tomorrow.

In Division 2, Corona del Mar beat Crescenta Valley, 2-1; they’ll host Redondo tomorrow.

In Division 6, Sage Hill beat Anaheim, 4-2, and plays at Santa Clara tomorrow.

On the Boys Soccer side, the first-round of Division 1 playoffs were not kind to local teams, with Newport Harbor losing 3-1 to Fullerton and CdM losing 2-0 to Mira Costa.

Boys Basketball had a winner in the first round of the Division 2A playoffs, as Pacifica Christian rolled to at 71-34 victory over La Serna. They’ll host Lakewood tonight at 7 p.m.

Meanwhile, Sage Hill lost to St. Monica, 62-49.

In Girls Basketball, Sage Hill easily got past Tesoro, 71-44, in Division 2AA. They’ll play Santa Barbara tomorrow.

CdM Girls squeaked by Ridgecrest Burroughs, 45-43, in Division 2A basketball, while Newport Harbor lost to Brentwood, 61-40. The Sea Queens host Ontario Christian tomorrow in second round play.

In Division 4A, Pacifica Christian will meet Ramona tomorrow in the second round, after enjoying a first-round bye.

• • •

The Airport Land Use Commission meets Thursday, Feb. 17 in the Eddie Martin Building at 3160 Airway Ave., in Costa Mesa.

The agenda is here.

• • •

The good news/bad news of the week. I received messaging concerning some residential trash pickups that failed to happen. The good news is that it appeared to be few and far between. The bad news is that it happened at all.

The report is that some bins put curbside last week in Corona del Mar did not get picked up that day, the next day or even through the weekend.

Calls of complaints seemed to hit some dead ends.

Several things came to mind. One, trash days have changed for some, but the city seemed to do a good job communicating those.

Two, COVID! It seems when something goes wrong, just blame it on COVID. However, my calls to CR&R, our “trash” company, reported that employment is strong and they’re past any COVID driver issues.

A CR&R spokesperson said they absolutely want to hear and quickly resolve any issues. And, that if someone runs into difficulty at CR&R getting through, that they also have representation that resides in the City’s Public Works Department that can assist.

• • •

The beachfront Super Panga Taqueria, Mario Marovic and his team’s latest entry into the Newport Beach restaurant scene, is now open.

Burritos, tacos, quesadillas, nachos, salads and more are on the menu. Try their different protein choices of salmon, shrimp, mahi, fried cod and fried calamari…enjoy a cold one, margaritas and more. 

The location is 2110 W. Oceanfront, in the area of the Newport Pier.

• • •

“Twosday,” 2/22/22, at 22nd Street Pizza, located at 2200 West Oceanfront is planned to be a special day, as you might imagine. Every order will give guests, yup, 22% off! 

According to owner Jerry Marroquin, the day will also offer giveaways, contests and more. 22nd Street Pizza is open 11 a.m.-10 p.m. daily and orders can be placed either online or in-person.

If you didn’t know it, Jerry married into the Ursini family to wife Laura. The family also owns Newport Rib and Pipeline Snack Shop. 22nd Street Pizza was inspired by Laura’s grandfather, Nick Ursini, who immigrated into the country in the early 1900s and subsequently fell in love with Newport Beach.

22nd Street Pizza specializes in pizza, wings and salads. Check them out at www.22ndstreetpizza.com.

• • •

Everyone gets the Navigator magazine here in Newport Beach. It’s the guide that tell us all about classes, recreation, special events, camps, OASIS and more.

But something caught my attention in this week’s edition in particular. If you said, “Who’s that on the cover?” The answer would be my family and me.

In the top photo, I’m the ogre among three princesses – my daughters Victoria (green) and Ashley and my granddaughter Kate.

 I absolutely remember the day that photo was taken. It’s a reminder to me, as we enjoyed an Eastertime celebration complete with train, of just what great stuff happens courtesy of our great city.


CdM Home Tour is just two weeks away…so get your tickets soon

With just two weeks to go until the CdM Home Tour, there is excitement as the team finalizes the details and puts the finishing touches on the homes to ensure you have a memorable and enjoyable day.

The 48th Annual Corona del Mar Home Tour, scheduled for Tuesday, March 1, is a wonderful opportunity to connect with friends and enjoy some of the most stunning homes in Newport Beach and Corona del Mar. Tickets include a tour of seven unique residences that will inspire and amaze attendees.

CdM Home Tour residence

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Courtesy of CdM Home Tour

One of the seven stunning residences on the CdM Home Tour

The breakfast and luncheon event will be held at the Newport Beach Civic Center. Breakfast will be served beginning at 8 a.m., where you can check-in, enjoy some tasty bites and meet with friends. Return at 12 p.m. to savor a delicious lunch, browse the boutique and purchase opportunity drawing tickets. Continue your tour of the homes before heading to Bliss Home & Design for the fun after-party.

If you haven’t already purchased a ticket for the Home Tour, there is still time. Visit www.cdmhometour.com to buy tickets, and remember that all funds raised support CdM Middle & High schools.

Follow the CdM Home Tour on social media to keep up to date with all the news – Instagram: @cdmhometour2022 and Facebook: Corona del Mar Home Tour.

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

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Corona del Mar Home Tour.


Mesa Water management team members appointed to board of directors for the Association of California Water Agencies

Mesa Water District (Mesa Water®) has announced the appointments of Marwan Khalifa, chief financial officer, to serve as chair of the finance committee and Stacy Taylor, water policy manager, to serve as chair of the business development Committee for the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA). As committee chairs, Khalifa and Taylor also serve on the ACWA board of directors. Their two-year terms began on January 1.

Mesa Water Khalifa and Taylor

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Courtesy of Mesa Water District

Marwan Khalifa and Stacy Taylor

“We are incredibly proud to have two of our management team members leading ACWA’s Finance and Business Development committees. Marwan Khalifa and Stacy Taylor bring valuable expertise and experience to help ACWA advocate for safe, affordable and reliable water for all Californians,” said Marice H. DePasquale, Mesa Water board president. 

As the largest statewide coalition of public water agencies in the country, ACWA provides comprehensive leadership, advocacy and resources for California water agencies to ensure a high quality and reliable water supply in an environmentally sustainable and fiscally responsible manner.

Khalifa, chief financial officer, has led Mesa Water’s financial services department since 2017. Taylor has worked for Mesa Water since 2010 in a variety of communications, public, government and external affairs roles. She currently serves as water policy manager.

Mesa Water District, a local independent special district, manages its finances and water infrastructure, and advocates water policy, while reliably providing an abundance of clean, safe water to benefit the public’s quality of life. Founded on January 1, 1960 and governed by a publicly-elected, five-member board of directors, Mesa Water provides 100% local groundwater to 110,000 residents in an 18-square-mile service area that includes most of the City of Costa Mesa, parts of Newport Beach and unincorporated Orange County including John Wayne Airport.


Regattas and Races…

Regattas and Races 2.15

Click on photo for a larger image

Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

BCYC

2022 Angelman Series 

February 12

PHRF A

1 Amante, Richely Family, LIYC

Elapsed Time 1:08:14, Corrected Time 1:05:47

2 Problem Child, Dan Rossen, BCYC

Elapsed Time 1:12:35, Corrected Time 1:08:26

3 Heartbeat 4, Charles Brewer, NHYC

Elapsed Time 1:19:01, Corrected Time 1:16:38

4 Mr. Pongs, CK Hwang, NHYC

Elapsed Time #######, Corrected Time #######

PHRF B

1 Violetta, Jane Hartley, BCYC

Elapsed Time 0:53:11, Corrected Time 0:48:50

2 Magoo, Gabriel Nistor, BCYC

Elapsed Time 0:59:47, Corrected Time 0:56:07

3 Healer, Larry Kliger, BCYC

Elapsed Time 1:05:07, Corrected Time 1:00:46

4 Shadow, Steve Fink, BCYC

Elapsed Time #######, Corrected Time #######

PHRF C

1 Altheris, Ray Booth, BYC

Elapsed Time 0:55:35, Corrected Time 0:50:09

2 Kaizen, Camerini/Logan, BYC

Elapsed Time 0:59:08, Corrected Time 0:53:42

3 Radical Departure, Dennis Rosene, BYC

Elapsed Time 1:00:55, Corrected Time 0:55:45

4 Miss Informed, Jeff Tighe, BYC

Elapsed Time #######, Corrected Time #######

5 Halcyon 3, Bob Kafka, BCYC

Elapsed Time #######, Corrected Time #######

News relating to racing in or around Newport Harbor should be forwarded to Tom Johnson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Quiet ebb and flow

Quiet ebb and flow.jpg SNN 2.15

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

The calmness of a Balboa morning


School Notes

Rules for Governor’s new announcement

Face Masks

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced last week that effective tomorrow, February 16, there will no longer be a mask mandate for indoor public spaces, but face coverings will remain a state requirement for students and staff (when students are present) while indoors at school. 

Indoors

–Face masks are required indoors regardless of vaccination status, such as in classrooms.

–Staff is required to wear masks while sharing indoor space with students.

–Masks provided, if needed.

Outdoors

–Masks are not required for students or staff while outdoors.

School Bus

–Masks are required for students and staff, regardless of vaccination status.

Exemptions

–Student face mask exemptions are permitted with an approved mask exemption application.

COVID-19 test kits available to students

Parents are reminded to keep children home from school if they are sick, have tested positive for COVID-19, or are awaiting COVID-19 test results. 

In an effort to maintain healthy schools, the Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) is offering optional, no-cost, at-home COVID-19 test kits for students to use prior to returning to school following Presidents’ Recess week on February 28. 

Elementary Schools

–Will communicate the process for obtaining the COVID-19 test kits, which will include parent consent to obtain a test kit, if you want a test kit sent home with your child. 

Secondary Schools

School will provide specific information about how the test kit can be obtained by students or parents/guardians.


Ripple effect

Ripple effect.jpg 2.15

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

A shimmer of sunlight


OC couple holds 11th Super Bowl party for 500 active-duty Camp Pendleton Marines, veterans at Legion Hall Post 291

Gary and Julie Crisp, owners of Costa Mesa-based Crisp Imaging, threw their 11th spectacular Super Bowl party for 500 members of the military and other guests at Legion Hall Post 291 in Newport Beach. In addition to 300 active-duty Camp Pendleton Marines bused from Camp Pendleton, the Crisps hosted dozens of veterans of conflicts dating to WWII. It was a day of fun, football and personal connections. Young recruits were excited to chat with veterans of past wars; the elders were equally eager for conversation. 

OC couple USC band

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Photos by Barbara McMurray

The USC Marching Band amped up the energy shortly after the arrival of four buses filled with Camp Pendleton Marines

“We wanted to give our men and women in uniform a joyous day they would never forget,” said Gary Crisp, CEO of Crisp Imaging, Inc. “It gives Julie and me so much happiness to see everyone laughing, talking, eating, playing games and enjoying the day. It is our humble honor to throw them this event to recognize their service and sacrifice.”

OC couple Crisps

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Julie and Gary Crisp sponsored an unforgettable Super Bowl party

OC couple Marines

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Young Marines from Camp Pendleton enjoyed the Super Bowl party at Legion Hall Post 291

As they watched the Rams best the Bengals on seven jumbo flat-screen TVs, guests were treated to chicken, tacos, pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs and drinks. They could arm-wrestle, smoke cigars, play video games, ping pong and cornhole and take part in Las Vegas-style games of chance. In addition, the military guests were invited to meet professional athletes and cruise the harbor on electric boats, as well as being pampered with therapeutic massages, chiropractic adjustments and haircuts.

OC couple Chiono

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Super Bowl party sponsor Victor Chiono (right) of Coca-Cola miraculously won an arm-wrestling challenge

The entertainment was nonstop: the USC Marching Band, dancing Raiderettes, gospel, blues, jazz and reggae music, an over-the-top lucha libre Mexican wrestling show, a magician, and, as guests departed with thousands of dollars’ worth of raffle prizes, Polynesian fire dancers performed, twirling flaming batons. 

OC couple helmet

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A young Marine raffle prize winner beamed when she won a signed football helmet

OC couple Behrens

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WWII Veteran Stanley Behrens, 99, hanging out with models from the casino company that provided Vegas-style games for guests

Event sponsors included the Stanley W. Ekstrom Foundation, R.D. Olson, Architects Orange, Burnham USA, Coca-Cola, Monster Energy Cares, Godes & Preis LLP, Tangram, Kent Valley, Chris and Monica Furman, 2003 Eagle Foundation, Trevor Terrill, Newport Harbor Post 291, Santa Margarita High School, Honeybaked Ham Co., Lear Boats, Balboa Bay Club, Salt, Schwab Charitable, Paul Folino, Knock Family Foundation, Bowermaster, Bill Milligan, McCarthy, Bank of the West, Hathaway Dinwiddie, Advanced Office, Richard and Bryn Debeikes, MK Electric, VCA Code Group, Daum Commercial Real Estate Group, Challenge Sales, DeLillo Chevrolet, Lawrence and Nancy Sigler, Mark Hulme, Mardek Enterprises, Paul and June Lange, Brian and Tracey Crisp and CBE Solutions. 

This event benefited the Dana Point 5th Marine Regiment Support Group, whose mission is to provide support and outreach to the 5th Marines and Sailors deployed from and stationed at Camp Pendleton and to their families.


Esme Quartet makes debut at Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents the Esme Quartet on Friday, March 18 at the Samueli Theater beginning at 8 p.m. The Esme Quartet features Wonhee Bae, violin; Yuna Ha, violin; Jiwon Kim, viola and Ye-Eun Heo, cello. They will be joined for their Center debut by composer Soo Yeon Lyuh playing the haegeum. The program includes Lyuh’s Yessori: A Fantasia for Haegeum; Debussy String Quartet and Beethoven: String Quartet, Op. 59, No. 2.

Esme Quartet makes debut quartet

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Courtesy of scfta.org

Esme Quartet

Based in Germany, the award-winning Esme Quartet has rapidly gained a worldwide reputation as a chamber ensemble of exceptional artistry and achievement. Formed in 2016 at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne, Germany by four Korean musicians, friends since their youth, the ensemble has been praised for its warm sound and powerful stage presence. With shared common interests and passions in music, the arts and life, the quartet brings together the performers’ brilliant and distinct musical personalities to form a cohesive, close-knit group that is passionately dedicated to the string quartet repertoire. 

Single tickets start at $29 and are now available online at www.scfta.org, at the Box Office 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 office at 714.755.0236. 

Samueli Theater at Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Meet artist Guy Buffet at Lahaina Galleries

Lahaina Galleries in Fashion Island presents the “Guy Buffet Art Show” on Saturday, Feb. 12 from 4-7 p.m.

Guy Buffet’s whimsical rendition of sommeliers, chefs and waiters and other images grace such everyday items as dinner plates, napkins, tablecloths, men’s dress shirts, ties and women’s fashion. His famous images depict restaurants, people and animals from Hawaii to France.

Meet artist Guy Buffet

Click on photo for a larger image

Photos courtesy of Lahaina Galleries

Artist Guy Buffet to appear at Lahaina Galleries on February 12

Buffet has been commissioned by corporations worldwide including Grand Marnier, Absolut Vodka, Ventura Foods, Westin and Ritz Carlton Hotels. He is the signature artist for Champagne Perrier Jouet.

Meet artist Perrier Jouet

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“Perrier Jouet Quartet Suite” by Guy Buffet 

Come meet Buffet and see some of his newest original works created just for this show, which is open to the public. 

The artwork will remain in the gallery throughout the month.

To kindly RSVP, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call 949.721.9117.

Lahaina Galleries is located in Fashion Island at 1173 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach. www.lahainagalleries.com.


SCE distributing $205 million in relief to help customers with past-due balances

Southern California Edison (SCE) is distributing $205 million in relief to help customers with past-due balances accrued between March 4, 2020 – the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic – through June 15, 2021. About 260,000 eligible SCE residential customers, including those enrolled in Community Choice Aggregators, will receive one-time credits on their February or March bills to partially reduce their past-due balances. No customer action is required.

The funds being distributed to customers represent SCE’s allocation from the California Arrearage Payment Program (CAPP), which is providing about $1 billion in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to help with past-due energy bills. The program is administered by the state’s Department of Community Services and Development (CSD).

SCE customers receiving the debt relief have balances 60 or more days past due that were accrued fully or partly during the CSD’s designated COVID-19 pandemic bill relief period. Bill credit amounts differ for each recipient and were determined using CSD guidelines.

“We are pleased to provide this help for SCE customers struggling with their electric bills,” said Lisa D. Cagnolatti, SCE’s senior vice president of customer service. “Many of our customers and communities continue to face hardships during the pandemic. SCE is here to help them with a range of programs and services, whether they need short-term or longer-term assistance.”

Since September 30, SCE’s Pandemic Debt Relief Program automatically enrolls residential customers with balances 60 or more days past due into 24-month payment arrangements, so they can pay off their balances over time.

CAPP-funded debt relief and SCE’s Pandemic Debt Relief Program are among the many ways SCE customers can get help with their bills. 

Customers receiving a CAPP benefit will get a notification letter from SCE by U.S. mail and a printed message will appear on their billing statement indicating the payment was applied to their account.

For more information on SCE’s pandemic debt relief and other payment assistance options, go here. For more information about CAPP, go here.

Southern California Edison, an Edison International (NYSE: EIX) company, is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of approximately 15 million via five million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.


Pet of the Week Dog and Cat print

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.

Ok, who’s the cutest? If you make us pick, we’ll pick Romeo. As an 8-year-old chihuahua mix, he’s totally got the art of Cupid down. If this sweet pup could recite any poem, it definitely would be “Roses are red…” A totally happy guy that will follow you through every season of your heart, he’s great with everyone, but he probably shouldn’t live in a home with rabbits or other small mammals. Romeo really is the kind of guy that brightens up a room. He always looks forward to seeing you and makes sure that you know that you are, absolutely, the most important one to him. If you’ve been looking for a really happy relationship, Romeo would love to meet you. 

Pet of the Week Romeo 2.8

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Courtesy of Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Romeo

The shelter is available to schedule his meet and greets, during the mid-day hours, seven days a week. There are two easy-to-use direct contact methods. One is by phone at 949.718.3454 and the other is through email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. They’ll be in touch just as soon as they’re done with their pet guests shelter chores.

The shelter does require completed application forms for their animals, so simply print one up from their non-profit’s webpage at www.FONBAS.org. After it is completed, you can email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and upon review, they’ll call you to schedule an appointment. They truly look forward to speaking with you and thank you for sharing in their joys of being the best pet parents ever.

Newport Beach Animal Shelter adoption fees:

–Adult Dogs - $150

–Puppies - $225

–Adult Cats - $90

–Kittens - $110

–Rabbits - $45

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.


Newport Beach – A Look Back

Photo series courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

Newport Beach A Look Back 100 Block South Bay Front.JPG 2.8

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1000 Block of South Bay Front, Balboa Island, circa 1940s

Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach and the Museum Store are located at 210 B Marine Ave., Balboa Island. They are open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free general admission on all days. Two-hour parking is available on Marine Avenue. For more information, call 949.675.3952, visit www.balboaislandmuseum.org or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Businesses and families…register to support Spirit Run and its youth causes, receive benefits in return

Are you looking to market your business to residents from Newport-Mesa and beyond? Consider becoming a vendor at Spirit Run’s Youth, Fitness & Dog Expo at this year’s Spirit Run taking place on Sunday, March 27.

Vendors have a captive audience as participants and spectators flock to the expo before and after their races.

Athletic shoes and apparel, health and fitness information, and youth and dog products and services are obvious fits for the expo. However, the expo is a great place for any business to meet locals as well as people from Southern California and beyond.

Businesses and families blaze wheel

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Courtesy of Spirit Run

Trying her luck at the Blaze Pizza wheel at a previous Spirit Run’s Youth, Fitness & Dog Expo

Learn more about the expo at www.newportspiritrun.org/expo-vendors.

Businesses, as well as families and individuals, can support Spirit Run and its beneficiaries as event sponsors and receive benefits in return. Benefits for businesses include logo placement on the event website, print materials, T-shirts and more. Businesses may also appreciate race day recognition by placing company banners at the start line, hosting an expo booth, making announcements and more. Families and individuals enjoy name recognition, free event entries and gift cards. Each can choose to direct 25% of their donation to a participating school or youth cause. 

For sponsorship details, visit www.newportspiritrun.org/sponsor.


COVID-19: 123 new cases and one new death reported in Newport Beach this past week

(Due to State reporting issues over the weekend, new cases are lower than expected)

Stu News Newport is reporting COVID-19 numbers on a weekly basis, as reported by the OC Health Care Agency.

This week, February 2-8, there have been 123 new cases in Newport Beach and one new death, bringing the overall totals to 8,665 cases reported to date and 115 deaths. 

During the past week, the county reported a total of 8,742 new cases, raising the total to 527,380 to date. The death totals for the county were 95 for the week, bringing the overall total number of deaths to 6,205.

As of Tuesday, Feb. 8, Orange County has performed a cumulative of 7,417,642 tests to date. There are 619 current cases of hospitalized patients in Orange County, of which 125 are in ICU.

For questions about the data presented by the county, call 714.834.2000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To view the county’s data dashboard, click here.

COVID-19 numbers are updated weekly by Stu News Newport in Friday’s edition. 

SNN COVID 19 2 11 22 1

SNN COVID 19 2 11 22 2

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Data courtesy of OC Health Care Agency


On the Harbor: If it’s a Yamaha outboard, you need to know West Coast Marine Services

By LEN BOSE

Over the last 10 years, it’s been no secret who the go-to person is around town to service your Yamaha outboards. That one is Nick Kelly, the owner of West Coast Marine Service, located at 1555 Newport Blvd. in Costa Mesa.

Kelly was born in Newport Beach at Hoag Hospital and recalls his father introducing him to a dinghy with an outboard at a very young age, allowing him free access to the harbor as soon as he was able to start the outboard himself. 

On the Harbor Nick and Tate

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Photos courtesy of Nick Kelly

Nick Kelly, owner of West Coast Marine Service, showing son Tate the tricks of the trade

As a kid, “I recall jumping into the dinghy with two of my friends and spending the entire day on the harbor. I have another fond memory of one Halloween when my father made an outboard motor costume for me,” said Kelly. 

Later, while away at college, Kelly took a diesel mechanics class, “just for fun,” at a local community college. “This is when the puzzle all came together for me deciding that I wanted to become a mechanic,” he added. Shortly after college, he opened West Coast Marine Service and has not looked back. 

I asked him about the parts shortages most industries are facing these days. “I placed my order in for new engines during mid-summer of last year and I’m hoping to receive them before March. However, the odds of me adding on to that order appears to be rather challenging at this point. In regard to finding parts for our customers, we have become very efficient at rebuilding parts. It’s not how I like to do things, but I have to keep my clients running and on the water over this next year,” said Kelly.

Regarding maintenance, Kelly could not emphasize enough that every 100 hours, or annually at least, owners should haul out their engine to allow for the changing of the lower end oil, to check the spark plugs and the filters. As with most boats, owners also need to make sure there is no fishing line wrapped around the props that could cause larger problems.

On the Harbor store front

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Where the work gets done

I also didn’t realize that West Coast Marine Service has its own boat trailers that allows them to pick up customers’ boats, then to bring them back to the shop for engine service along with other maintenance items, such as bottom painting. And, if the boats are too big for the trailers, well, the shipyards in town know that their first call is to West Coast Marine anytime a Yamaha outboard is involved.

While walking the docks, it is quite obvious that most of the marine manufacturers today are offering boats driven by outboard motors. Companies like Hunt, Mag Bay and Hinckley, all your upper-end yachts, are offering outboards while expanding to larger vessels each year. 

Outboards makes sense now having fewer acoustical problems, better engine accessibility, while at the same time allowing more usable space aboard, better fuel economy and the list goes on. 

Still, we all know that joke about walking down the dock and asking your friend, why does that boat only have four outboards on it? The reply is, five wouldn’t fit! 

If I’m to speculate on the all-purpose vessels moving forward, I think we’ll continue to see one or two outboards on each, but each with an increase in horsepower. This will allow these boats to have larger swim platforms.

What about electric outboards in the near future? “That’s a good question,” said Kelly. “The marine industry will always follow the car and other industries, but maybe not as fast. The first couple of tries have not caught on yet, but I feel it’s safe to say we’ll see the change soon.”

Kelly was also excited to tell me about his new fishing charter business. If I recall correctly, he picked up a Parker 28 and is outfitting it with all the newest features that Yamaha has to offer, including the new XTO phase charging systems. This way he can demonstrate the new systems to prospective buyers along with a platform to take out fishing charters.

My last question to him was how do you enjoy boating? “I do it all, from sailboat cruising with my whole family, to taking the kids to Moonstone, or just going fishing with the gang; yachting has always been a big part of my life. I’ve also done many deliveries down the California coast, along with a Hawaii delivery after a Transpac. So, I enjoy it all, including now with the kids entered in junior sailing.”

Finally, I can say without hesitation, that every one of my customers from Dana Point to Cabrillo Beach with Yamaha outboards tells me that Nick Kelly at West Coast Marine is the go-to person. 

Sea ya.

~~~~~~~~

Len Bose is a yachting enthusiast, yacht broker and harbor columnist for Stu News Newport.


There are still tickets available to the CdM Home Tour, scheduled for March 1

With less than three weeks to go until the CdM Home Tour, there is excitement as the team finalizes the details and puts the finishing touches on the homes to ensure you have a memorable and enjoyable day.

The 48th Annual Corona del Mar Home Tour, scheduled for Tuesday, March 1, is a wonderful opportunity to connect with friends and enjoy some of the most stunning homes in Newport Beach and Corona del Mar. Tickets include a tour of six unique residences that will inspire and amaze attendees.

There are still tickets residence

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Courtesy of CdM Home Tour

One of the stunning residences on this year’s CdM Home Tour

The breakfast and luncheon event will be held at the Newport Beach Civic Center. Breakfast will be served beginning at 8 a.m., where you can check-in, enjoy some tasty bites and meet with friends. Return at 12 p.m. to savor a delicious lunch, browse the boutique and purchase opportunity drawing tickets. Continue your tour of the homes before heading to Bliss Home & Design for the fun after-party.

If you haven’t already purchased a ticket for the Home Tour, there is still time. Visit www.cdmhometour.com to buy tickets, and remember that all funds raised support CdM Middle & High schools.

Follow the CdM Home Tour on social media to keep up to date with all the news – Instagram: @cdmhometour2022 and Facebook: Corona del Mar Home Tour.

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

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Corona del Mar Home Tour.


Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents Matthew Whitaker

Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents Matthew Whitaker in his Center debut for two performances on Sunday, March 27 at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the Jazz Club in Samueli Theatre. After demonstrating his prodigious talent while still a young child, 20-year-old composer and pianist Whitaker has established himself as one of the hottest new names in jazz.

At age 10, he was the opening performer for Stevie Wonder’s induction into the Apollo Theater’s Hall of Fame. At 15, he was named a Yamaha Artist, becoming the youngest musician to join the stellar group of jazz pianists. He has toured extensively, both in the U.S. and abroad, performing on many world-renowned stages. He has recorded two acclaimed albums and his story was recently featured on CBS’s 60 Minutes.

Segerstrom Center Whitaker

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Photo by Jacob Blickenstaf

Courtesy of scfta.org

Matthew Whitaker

Whitaker has toured both in the U.S. and abroad, performing before The Youth Assembly at the United Nations headquarters in NYC, and on other world renowned stages, including Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Apollo Theater, Carnegie Hall and Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC; SFJAZZ Center in San Francisco; the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC; The Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts; Monterey Jazz Festival; Newport Jazz Festival and at international venues in France, Italy, Germany, Indonesia, UK, Australia, Switzerland, Portugal, Japan, Spain and Morocco.

Whitaker has performed with an array of outstanding musicians including Ray Chew, Christian McBride, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Rhoda Scott, Cameron Carpenter, Regina Carter, Jason Moran, Jon Batiste, Cory Henry, Marc Cary, Arturo O’Farrill, James Carter, Roy Ayers, D.D. Jackson, The New York Pops Orchestra, and with Hamiet Bluiett and his Bio-Electric Ensemble.

In 2010, he was a winning participant in the “Child Stars of Tomorrow” competition, as part of Amateur Night at the Apollo. After performing with Stevie Wonder, he returned to the Apollo for FOX TV’s revival of “Showtime at the Apollo in 2016,” where he won the audience over with his rendition of Stevie Wonder’s classic “I Wish.” Whitaker has been on national and international radio and television, including The Today Show’s documentary series “Boys Changing The World,” the Harry Connick Jr. Show and an appearance on the syndicated TV talk show Ellen.

Single tickets for Matthew Whitaker at Segerstrom Center for the Arts start at $59 and are now available online at www.scfta.org, at the Box Office 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 office at 714.755.0236. 

Samueli Theatre at Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Take Five: Meet Marlis Fyke, owner of The White Dress and wedding dress aficionado

By AMY SENK

Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and for some of us, it means helping our kids choose cards to distribute at school, for others it means buying flowers or making a reservation at a fancy restaurant. And for others, it could mean someone popping the question, which in turn means thinking about wedding dresses – and that’s where Marlis Fyke comes in. Fyke owns The White Dress in Corona del Mar, owns wedding gown boutiques in Los Angeles and Miami and is opening a second White Dress shop in Bozeman. She personally bought seven dresses for her own wedding before narrowing it down. When it comes to bridal couture, she’s our local expert, so I caught up with her to learn more.

Take Five Meet Marlis 

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Photos courtesy of Marlis Fyke

Marlis Fyke

Q: I know you have an amazing story about how you started your business. Can you share it with our readers?

A: I worked at Nordstrom through high school and college and Nordstrom is that customer service, all-in establishment. Coming from there, and having shopped where I shopped, I saw room for improvement. I told my fiancé, “I’ve always thought about the name The White Dress…” I used to own the domain name, The White Dress, but I had given up (the idea of a business.) I thought, “You know what, this is a great change for where I am in technology and something I want to do and pursue.” So I did it. Three months later, I had a business plan and leased space in Corona del Mar. We were engaged for three years because we just enjoyed being engaged. It was so much fun. I wore multiple dresses from my store for our wedding. I was one of my own first customers. I bought seven, and I wore three. I wore one for the rehearsal, one for the ceremony and one for the reception. The first one was a beaded sheath dress for the rehearsal dinner. The ceremony dress was more conservative. It was Sex and the City days back then, with the flower on the neck, you know, the halter neckline with the flower on it. And then a corset, mermaid gown with a blue ribbon in the back for the reception. 

Q: What are the biggest wedding dress trends for 2022, and who are some of your favorite designers?

A: Trends – long sleeves and high necklines. If you look at Paris Hilton’s wedding dress, Galia Lahav did one of hers. That high neckline, that old-school traditional, that’s in style right now, which is so amazing. We have lots of those coming in. We worked with Paris; she was wonderful. So friendly and lovely. She came into our store in L.A. multiple times. She got a Galia Lahav dress from the L.A. store. Other trends – I would say even detachable sleeves off the shoulder. That sexy look was in, that really sexy, low back look. And it’s not like it’s gone. It’s just that people are now becoming a little more traditional with these exquisite laces that are really hard to find. It’s all about that. We we have a lot of colorful dresses coming in. The Bella dress by Galia Lahav – that’s what I mean. Galia Lahav is my ultimate favorite. I own the store in L.A. and Miami for that designer as well. Rivini is also amazing. It’s got clean lines, really well made, minimalist. They also have lots of beautiful lace gowns, too. But more of that simple, strapless gown with lace, that type of look. With Galia Lahav, they have the long sleeves and the dramatic trains and the different blush colors with different layers of tulle underneath that make them frothy. Every one of their designs is a piece of art, really. They are made to measure if you want them to be. We take 20 measurements of the body, so they come in fitting really well. Also, another designer is Ines Di Santo. She is just a beautiful woman from Colombia who is now in Canada and her dresses are exquisite. You can go online and see any of these gowns. If I were getting married today, I would want the long sleeves. I would want a really long veil and long sleeves, but I would want to be young again. I want to go back to 25 years old, not in my 40s. And definitely, Galia Lahav. I know the designer so well, and the gowns fit the body so well. Also, short dresses are making a comeback.

Take Five Meet dress

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“Renata,” an Ines Di Santo creation, features a high neckline, long sleeves and a full skirt with layers of tulle

Q: What tips can you offer a newly engaged woman when it comes to dress shopping? What do you wish brides knew before they walked through your door?

A: Sometimes they will bring like 10 people with them. It’s not really helpful. I know it’s so much fun, but bring the core, special people that you want with you. It shouldn’t be just a party. It should be really your core group. You will want to focus. The budget. You have to always add in alterations because alterations are an additional fee, and they’ve gone up. Alterations used to be $300-$500. Now they are $800-$1,000. And if you want to do custom measurements – let’s say you are a different-shaped body, like you have a bigger cup size or just a different body shape –there’s special things you can do to tweak the dress versus buying a standard-size 8 and spending all that money altering it. You can open the cut, you can do a petite cut, if you’re shorter, you can do different things…you should ask your stylist if the designer you have does those different things. The designers I have mentioned all do those special cuts for different sizes. Petite cut is really important. Normal sizes are 13 inches from the hollow of your neck to your waistline, but if you’re 11 inches and you’re getting the 13-inch dress, it’s not going to look perfect on you. Sometimes we know a perfect dress the moment a woman walks in the shop. My employee, Cait, my manager in CdM, she is so good at that. She is so spot on that people just relish how she does it. She has a long detailed conversation with people about what they want before they come in and we take good notes. She gets an idea and she puts it all together. All the girls are very good stylists.

Q: What is the most memorable thing that’s happened at your shop with a bride-to-be?

A: This fiancé came in, and he had a bottle of Champagne that he delivered on ice along with roses and he gave us his credit card. He said his fiancée was coming in, and he said, “Whatever she wants. She can spend as much as she wants. Please don’t let her know, and when she decides on the dress, please give her this note, these flowers and pop open the bottle of beautiful Champagne.” I think it was Cristal. She found a dress, we did the whole thing, we gave her the note. She read it. She started bawling. It was really special. What a great guy to think of all that. It was so sweet. 

Q: How has the pandemic changed the wedding industry and specifically the wedding dress business?

A: The venues have changed. Many wedding venues closed during the shutdown and left brides without a wedding location. We’ve seen more backyard weddings. But they still need the perfect dress – or two!

~~~~~~~~

Amy Senk is a long-time resident of Corona del Mar and a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

He’ll be flying high at this Sunday’s Super Bowl

Fair Game Toms new headshotTrivia question for you Super Bowl know-it-alls. Name a performer participating in this year’s Super Bowl from Newport Beach? 

Give up? 

How about Steve Hinton Sr., president of Planes of Fame Museum in Chino and an Air Force Heritage flight pilot. Steve will fly a P-51 WWII “Mustang” fighter plane, from the museum, in a group of aircraft over SoFi Stadium during Sunday’s national anthem. 

Pretty cool!

Planes of Fame Museum is “known throughout the world for its collection of mainly military aircraft, many of which are in flying condition.” Check them out at https://planesoffame.org.

Just an fyi, Steve’s wife, Karen Maloney Hinton, was a Corona del Mar High School Class of 1975 graduate and rumored to have possibly been their Valedictorian. Whether she was or wasn’t, it sounds good. And, it’s always nice to know the brains of the family.

Fair Game SNN Steve Hinton

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Courtesy of Planes of Fame Museum

Super Bowl bound Steve Hinton

• • •

Fire struck our neighbors to the south (Laguna Beach) yesterday in the early morning hours. Newport Beach Fire was part of the effort to knock down a fire which could have had a devastating outcome.

According to Newport Beach Fire Chief Jeff Boyles, “the Emerald Fire started just after 4 a.m. NBFD sent five fire engines as part of an initial, aggressive attack in the beginning phases of the fire along with units from Laguna Beach and the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA). The OCFA had jurisdiction and assumed overall incident command with assistance from LBFD. 

“Although the high sustained winds, low humidity and relatively warm temperatures proved to aid in spreading the fire, we were fortunate in that the Emerald Fire was the only major fire burning throughout the State of California giving us a deep pool of aerial resources to draw from.”

 Chief Boyles said the fire burned some 150 acres, with 375 firefighters being deployed, including 10 strike teams from regional agencies and five helicopters (from OCFA, Los Angeles County and Cal Fire.) 

Additionally, fixed wing aircraft, specialized firefighting equipment, hand crews and bulldozers were brought in to navigate the difficult terrain of Laguna Beach.

 The good news, no injuries and no structure damage.

Can the news get any better than that?

• • •

Monday is Valentine’s Day. Perhaps you’re seriously in love and you’re looking for that magical place to propose? 

Well, did you know that Yelp named the Top 10 places in the U.S. to do so? Any guesses of what or where in Newport Beach made the list?

If you said Gondola Adventures, get the ring out and drop to one knee!

To check them out, go to https://gondola.com.

If you want to see some of the others that made the list, perhaps for future ideas, go here.

• • •

Perhaps you’re not ready to propose…maybe you just want a good photo with that loved one. Here’s an idea, head over to Sherman Library & Gardens, mention Stu News to get into the Central Garden for free and take a photo in front of their wonderful red ribbon display. 

It works for Lunar New Year photos, too.

• • •

Mark it down, the 2022 Economic and Financial Update, presented by the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, will feature Christopher G. Schwarz, Ph.D. via Zoom at 11:30 a.m. on February 23. Schwarz is the Associate Professor of Finance and Faculty Director at the Center for Investment and Wealth Management at UCI’s Paul Merage School of Business.

It’s free with a reservation through the Chamber at www.newportbeach.com.

• • •

A year or two ago I walked into the little Ralphs, as I call it, on Westcliff. No sooner had I walked through the automatic doors when I was forced to jump out of the way of several young teens bolting to the same doors, with bottles of liquor in their hands.

Oh to be young! And stupid, for that matter.

It dawned on me that the kids had just pulled off a grab and run. The interesting thing was that no one from the store moved to do anything about it. So, I walked up to the manager or supervisor on duty and told them what had happened and they said that it frequently did, but that they were told by management to stand down.

No yelling, no chase, no confrontation.

If I wasn’t so old, heck, I might try it. What a great way to save money.

Anyway, this past Saturday, I arrived home to an email from an irate resident from Eastbluff that had just witnessed something similar. As he entered the Ralphs there, another patron indicated to him that “the store was just robbed of alcohol.” So, he gave chase and ran out to the parking lot in an attempt to intervene but the suspects were already gone.

The man said that he then reported the incident to the store manager, but got the feeling that they didn’t care and would do nothing about it. 

Not being happy, the witness finally offered up this, “I called the NBPD but they would not take my report unless Ralphs pursued it. This is absurd. This is my neighborhood and I do not want to sit idly by and say, oh what the heck, this is happening all over. No, it should not happen anywhere, but especially not in my neighborhood.” 

Well, like it or not, it’s a different world out there. We, Ralphs, the police, we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t.

Somedays, it’s a sad state of affairs.


City manager: Funds surplus focuses on infrastructure, capital improvement projects, neighborhood enhancements

By SARA HALL

A community forum this week summarized the city’s goals and priorities for 2022.

During Speak Up Newport’s monthly meeting held via a Zoom livestream on Wednesday (Feb. 9), City Manager Grace Leung condensed the City Council’s annual goal setting session held January 29.

Council’s planning session was about three hours and Leung highlighted some of the important topics from the meeting, including this fiscal year’s surplus funds and how staff is recommending using them for several important future capital improvement projects.

She also provided a revenue update and projections, and discussed expenditures and infrastructure.

At the annual planning session, council reviews the recommended budget, which ensures that the priorities of the city are implemented through the budget, Leung explained. The big focus this year is the surplus funds that have gone to long-term liabilities and come for capital improvements.

“It’s great for the city in making sure that we keep long-term infrastructure and long-term needs met,” Leung said. “I’m very excited about this next budget program and over the next year to have some of these key capital projects.”

This year’s adopted budget was for $234.1 million, but the most recent projection comes in at $249.2 million.

“After the first three months, we already saw it ticking upward,” Leung said.

It’s very healthy, she added. They weren’t sure where things would be financially during the COVID-19 pandemic, but as the city heads into more normal operations they’re seeing a “strong recovery” happening, Leung said.

The major revenue sources from property taxes, sales tax and Transient Occupancy Tax are all seeing solid growth, she said.

“These are critical for us,” Leung said. “These top three sources account for 75% of our general fund revenue. So really, where these revenues go is where we’re going to be going as a city.”

Property tax revenue is projected at $123 million for the 2021-22 FY. Newport Beach assessed values are continuing to increase, Leung noted. For 2022-23, growth is projected to be 6.5%, the strongest since 2018.

This year’s sales tax revenue is projected to hit $43 million. The growth in sales tax was a little bit of a surprise, she said. There have been very strong sales across the board, in all of the categories.

“Particularly, you’re seeing a lot more...goods rather than services,” Leung said. “People are purchasing things and we’re seeing the impact of that.”

When the pandemic first hit and a number of hotels closed, there was a big drop off in TOT revenue, Leung pointed out, but there’s been really strong growth recently and the 2021-22 FY is projected at $26 million in revenue.

“In 2021, it’s really popped back up,” she said.

While the hotels are coming back, they’re not at the pre-COVID numbers yet, Leung added. What is really making that revenue go back up is the residential TOT, or short-term lodging like Airbnb and vacation rentals, she noted.

The number of permits aren’t expanding, it’s the length of stay and room rates, Leung said.

“We’re seeing higher revenue from the existing permits,” she said.

So, with the recovery, growth and strong projections for 2021-22 FY, the preliminary revenue outlook for 2022-23 is very healthy, Leung noted. While there will probably be some more adjustments before heading to council, 2022-23 is projected to reach $264.7 million.

“Having this nice recovery on our revenue side really gives us an opportunity to look and make sure that our funding is set appropriately,” said Leung, who has recently been meeting with departments for their budget requests.

A big focus is long-term sustainability, she said.

“Where are areas that, if we have long-term liabilities, are we taking care of them? Are we addressing and putting money toward those things?” she asked.

In Newport Beach, the big priorities are the unfunded pension and infrastructure, Leung said.

Regarding the pension, Leung mentioned that the city has been paying more than required and it’s anticipated to be 100% funded in the next 10-15 years. It’s still challenging, considering the impact that CalPERS can have on their plan, she added, but they are dedicated to continuing that funding level.

Under infrastructure funding, Leung explained the three areas it breaks down into: Facilities Financing Plan, Harbor and Beaches Capital Plan and the Facilities Maintenance Plan.

It’s not the most fun topic, but it’s really critical to be maintained, she said. Financially, it’s good to ensure that the city’s infrastructure needs are being met for the long-term.

“We continue to look into these, this is going to be a focus area of this budget cycle: Do we have these funded at the right level? And do we need to put more funding on these? Because I think it’s important that we make sure the infrastructure is funded before we go and add any enhancements or any additional operating services,” Leung said. “You want to make sure what you have now is taken care of over the long-term.”

City manager Funds surplus city hall

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Photo by Sara Hall

Newport Beach City Hall

Although the budget is still in development, two areas of service needs were highlighted at the planning session: Police and homeless services.

For the Newport Beach Police Department, the city is looking at incorporating body-worn cameras for officers. There is an approximate $450,000 initial cost and about $105,000 annual ongoing staff and $195,000 annual system costs, Leung explained. A big part of the cost comes from storing the data and maintaining it as public records, she noted, and that will likely require one full-time employee.

Homeless services was probably the longest discussion item at the planning meeting, Leung said.

“This is an important topic, we know, that’s high on the community’s mind and high on the council…priorities,” Leung said.

This is an issue they’ve been tackling since she first started three years ago, she noted. Although they’ve committed a lot of effort and resources, there is still more that needs to be done. It’s a complex issue, she added, long-term solutions aren’t easy and are very individualized.

The city has partnered with City Net, Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter, Trellis International, and Be Well OC, which has a mobile mental health van launching in Newport Beach next week.

They’re very excited to put this year’s surplus funds into capital improvements, Leung said. At the council planning session, city staff recommended using $10.5 million of the surplus for facilities maintenance and improvements and using $15.5 million for neighborhood enhancements.

Facilities projects for 2022-23 FY include: Balboa Peninsula fire station and branch library, a project they are hoping to model – in a way that makes sense – after the recently constructed similar “fibrary” in Corona del Mar; the central library lecture hall, a project being funded by a public-private partnership; and the junior lifeguard program and parking lot improvements, another public-private project.

Other future projects budgeted through the surplus funds include: About $1.7 million for Bonita Creek Park synthetic turf replacement in 2025; $64.6 million for police facility replacement by 2033 (the new facility’s land purchase timeline, which may be earlier than 2033, and cost are to be determined and not factored in); and $14.7 million for the Santa Barbara fire station replacement by 2035.

Neighborhood enhancements include: Balboa Island drainage, street pavement; Arroyo Park synthetic turf; landscaping; Peninsula Point street ends; storm drains; General Plan update; street lights and a city park assessment study.

Many of these items are street or infrastructure related, which Leung noted is always more cost-effective to do maintenance now rather than a major re-do later.

The city park assessment will review all parks in Newport Beach and analyze future needs.

Another future need is the Newport Pier-McFadden Plaza rehabilitation, Leung said. There is already some funding for a circulation project that was in the works, she noted, but after discussing it, council wanted to look at it more holistically and the needs of the pier itself.

“Essentially, we have money budgeted where we (can) replace pilings or replace pieces of the pier, but would it make sense, actually, to look at it in a bigger way, in a bigger redesign?

There’s a lot of services down there and circulation issues and conflicts happening, so they can look at the project creatively, Leung said.

There will be a lot of public input during the process, she confirmed.

“I’m sure a lot of people will be interested in (that project) and have a lot of input on such an iconic piece of our city,” Leung said.

During the Speak Up meeting, Leung also answered a number of questions related to crime, the boardwalk, pickleball, state mandates and more.

~~~~~~~~

Sara Hall covers City Hall and is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


Rock on

Rock on

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

Sea foam at Little Corona


The kingdom

The kingdom

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

A look down on the splendor that is Newport Beach


Council favors outdoor dining on Balboa Island, few months remaining on Peninsula due to state jurisdiction

By SARA HALL

City Council held a study session this week to discuss outdoor dining on public right-of-way areas on Balboa Island and around Newport Pier on the Balboa Peninsula.

Council unanimously agreed in two bifurcated discussions on Tuesday (Feb. 8) to work with a state agency on allowing outdoor dining in public parking spaces on the peninsula until about mid-May this year; and directed staff to look into making the current city policy work or updating it to allow outdoor dining on sidewalks on Marine Avenue on Balboa Island, with consideration for the Americans with Disabilities Act, pedestrian access issues, safety and working with the local community.

Just after the COVID-19 pandemic started, council granted emergency temporary use permits to allow outdoor dining, explained Community Development Director Seimone Jurjis.

The permits waived city code and allowed outdoor dining in private and public parking lots and public rights-of-way areas. ETUPs for the approximately 120 establishments expired on December 31 and city code is now applicable.

“It was highly successful,” Jurjis said.

For private property, the city is granting limited term permits, which allow outdoor dining for up to 12 months, Jurjis said. Staff has issued about 30 LTPs to local restaurants.

But city policy restrictions apply when it comes to public property.

Council favors outdoor Balboa Island

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Outdoor dining along Marine Avenue on Balboa Island

On Marine Avenue on Balboa Island, the outdoor dining is on the sidewalk, which can get a little tight, noted Public Works Director Dave Webb.

“Marine Avenue…is a little more challenging,” he said. “You’ve got a lot more street furniture, trees, lights, trash cans, food racks and things like that.”

The challenge is the city policy restrictions on public right-of-way clearance, he said. City policy requires an eight-foot clearance for busy areas like Marine Avenue.

“That’s just to deal with the masses of crowds,” and ADA access, Webb explained.

The sidewalk is typically 10 feet wide, he added. Some table and chair options on the sidewalk aren’t “too obtrusive,” but they wouldn’t meet the guidelines as they are laid out in the city code.

The policy does allow the businesses to utilize street furniture, like a public bench, as long as that clearance requirement is still met.

If alcohol is served, there are fencing/barrier and other state requirements to consider as well, Webb added. Most councilmembers agreed that the state requirement of fencing/barrier for serving alcohol doesn’t seem feasible for the area.

They could explore utilizing parking on Balboa Island for outdoor dining, but parking is very difficult as it is, Webb said.

“Everything is tight on that island,” he said.

Using parking spaces could actually hurt the local businesses since so many customers are out-of-town visitors, noted Councilmember Joy Brenner. There needs to be a balance, she added.

“I would want to hear more from them (BI business owners) about that before we ever thought about removing any parking on the island,” Brenner said.

Some other councilmembers commented and agreed that using the parking doesn’t seem like a good idea.

Staff isn’t suggesting using parking spaces, it’s just an option council can consider, if they choose to, Webb clarified, but parking is already extremely tight and removing any could hurt other merchants.

Webb also noted that there are fees for outdoor dining. If it’s less than 100 square feet, the establishment pays $166 annually for the use of the public right-of-way. If it’s more than that the business pays $313 annually.

Overall, councilmembers were in support of continuing the outdoor dining in this location.

“This has been awesome. It’s re-energized Marine Avenue in a great way,” said Councilmember Will O’Neill. “We should do everything we can to try to keep this going because people loved it and I do too.”

He was “all in” on updating the city policy to take into account Marine Avenue specifically. They should continue to work with the Balboa Island Improvement Association on the project, he added.

“It’s been a big deal and I hear from residents all the time,” about the positive impact it’s had, O’Neill said. “If you’re going to try to find silver linings that came out of 2020, this is one of them.”

Councilmember Diane Dixon also supported allowing outdoor dining on the sidewalk.

“It’s wonderful for our restaurants on Balboa Island. It makes it fun,” Dixon said. “It really is an enjoyable community vibe that’s been created down there.

Brenner noted all the emails they received, people were “thrilled” with the outdoor dining on the island.

Council received more than 60 emails in support of continuing the outdoor dining, many from longtime local residents and business owners on Balboa Island. Several noted that it’s best to keep allowing the outdoor option considering the COVID-19 pandemic.

There wasn’t a single letter opposing outdoor dining on Balboa Island, Dixon added.

“It’s a home run,” agreed Councilmember Brad Avery, who also noted the importance of maintaining the ADA clearance.

It can be particularly challenging for someone in a wheelchair during a busy summer weekend, he said.

The minimum for a wheelchair would be four feet, Webb said, but that wouldn’t be recommended in certain areas because it would really be too tight if two people were next to each other or if there was pedestrian cross-traffic.

“That access is absolutely critical,” Dixon said. “I would want to make sure we allow for that.”

They don’t want to open the city up for potential liability, noted resident Nancy Scarbrough. ADA is a law, not a city building code that can be waived, and a person can sue the city if they feel they don’t have access, she said.

Webb also noted that the minimum clearance guidelines could be different for the off-season. Summer is so congested on Marine Avenue, it could be more restrictive. It also depends on the site and if there is a lot of existing sidewalk furniture. It’s a case-by-case basis, he added.

During the emergency TUP period, the city allowed four- and six-foot clearance areas to help businesses out, Webb said.

Dixon also suggested some minimal design recommendations to ensure the encroachment onto the public right-of-way isn’t extending out too far in certain places, which could make walking by difficult.

“Just so that tables aren’t jutting out,” she said. “We should have some standards.”

She also suggested looking into relocating possible structural impediments, like empty newspaper racks, to free up some sidewalk real estate.

“They’re an eyesore,” she said.

Both Dixon and Webb noted there is some difficulty regarding moving or removing newspaper racks, as they saw when the issue was raised in Corona del Mar a few years ago.

“We want everybody to have access to news and information, but I think we could look at areas where we can straighten up the sidewalks,” Dixon said.

Maintaining the sidewalk with outdoor dining is important, she noted, including ensuring that dirty dishes are removed from tables. It’s included in the permit and they can work on the details of what that entails, Webb said, some restaurants have more issues than others.

Dixon emphasized the importance of keeping the area clean and that it’s the responsibility of the store owner.

Council favors outdoor Helmsman

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Photo by Amy Senk

Outdoor dining at the Helmsman Ale House on the peninsula

On the Balboa Peninsula, a lot of the outdoor dining space using public parking has “shrunk down,” Jurjis said. Currently, only about five establishments using approximately a combined 18 parking spaces are being utilized.

They spoke with California Coastal Commission staff about their stance on outdoor dining when it falls within CCC jurisdiction, as it does in some areas on the peninsula.

“They were mildly ok for a few more months,” during the slow season, Jurjis said.

CCC will allow temporary use of public parking until about mid-May, he said, and then they want all that parking restored for the public.

“This is public access,” he summarized. “Parking is for the beach visitors, it’s not meant for private use.”

Answering a council question about the CCC’s position on continuing the program in the off-season, Jurjis explained that the city would have to submit a Coastal Development Permit application to the CCC. Timing-wise, it takes a year or two to process the application. They would also have to show how the city would mitigate the lost spaces, he added.

It would be difficult to make those findings regarding public access during the peak season, Jurjis noted.

Regarding possible lost revenue, staff reviewed parking revenue for this area of West Oceanfront and the average is about $441 per month, per space over a 12-month period. Last year was a record year for parking revenue, Jurjis noted.

That totals approximately $100,000 that did not go into the general fund due to those 18 parking spaces being utilized, he confirmed.

The $441 average encompasses 12 months of paid parking, including the peak season, O’Neill pointed out. So, if they were to charge based on that figure it would be artificially high, he said.

O’Neill visited the area where most of the outdoor dining on public parking is located on the peninsula and “every seat” was taken, he said.

“The amount of sales tax that this has generated maybe didn’t offset it completely, but sure offset a lot of the parking revenue,” O’Neill said. “People are using it, people love it. It’s unfortunate to lose it, but if the Coastal Commission’s not going to allow us to even issue a permit on it I guess at some point it has to go away.”

Mayor Kevin Muldoon also went by the area recently and the tables were pretty full, but the parking lot was still fairly open.

“So, I think we’re still collecting that revenue,” he said.

Unless it’s a crammed weekend with no parking availability at all, people are still finding a space and the city is still capturing that revenue, he noted.

Some people are still not comfortable inside a restaurant, Muldoon noted, so he supported leaving for the outdoor dining on public parking spaces until mid-May for the sake of wider accessibility to the restaurants.

Muldoon supported working with CCC on continuing to allow the use for the next few months and, by a show of hands, the rest of council unanimously agreed.

~~~~~~~~

Sara Hall covers City Hall and is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


Tickets go on sale February 11 for The Australian Pink Floyd Show

Segerstrom Center for the Arts welcomes the biggest and most spectacular Pink Floyd tribute band on the planet: The Australian Pink Floyd Show performing one night only, Saturday, Aug. 6 in Segerstrom Hall. Having sold more than four million tickets to concerts that have taken place in 35 countries, The Australian Pink Floyd Show has been hailed by The Times as “The Gold Standard” and Sunday Times Culture as “the most popular tribute band in the world.” The Australian Pink Floyd Show gave their first ever concert in Adelaide, Australia in 1988 and since then have performed concerts all over the world, played at David Gilmour’s 50th birthday celebration and were even joined on stage by original Pink Floyd member Rick Wright. TAPFS is the leading and biggest show of its kind in the world. The Australian Pink Floyd show is one of the most in demand touring entities currently operating.

Tickets go on sale Australian

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Photo by Mark F. Gibson

Courtesy of scfta.org

Australian Pink Floyd

After celebrating nearly 35 years of playing Pink Floyd songs, the whole world stopped in 2020 while the global pandemic caused the postponement or cancellation of live music. Now, it is time to shine on again as The Australian Pink Floyd Show returns with a new tour for 2022.

Often described as the best tribute band in the world, the show strives to reproduce the classic music of Pink Floyd with note-to-note perfection while bringing the music to new audiences worldwide. The band has worked with musicians Guy Pratt, and Durga and Lorelei McBroom, who have toured with Pink Floyd, as well as Colin Norfield, Pink Floyd’s sound engineer during their “Division Bell” tour and David Gilmour’s solo tours. The show includes many special effects including a light and laser show, video animations, and state-of-the-art high resolution LED screen technology coupled with a 10-piece band of superb musicians and vocalists.

During the late 1980s, the tribute band scene was a new concept and few tribute bands were in existence at the time. The prospect of a group devoted to reproducing the music of Pink Floyd, seemed to be such an ambitious venture that few people believed could be done. When a group of five young guys from Adelaide got together to play Pink Floyd songs for their own enjoyment in a rented school room in 1988, little did they suspect that this little project would turn into a worldwide phenomenon. Thirty years later, The Australian Pink Floyd Band has filled arenas throughout Europe, UK, America, Canada, South America, and Russia. They have grown to be one of the oldest and longest running tribute shows in the world and, certainly, the most famous. It’s a must see experience for Pink Floyd fans and lovers of music in general.

The Australian Pink Floyd Show is on its tour called “All That’s To Come,” bringing to the stage the songs that mean so much to Pink Floyd fans all over the world. Replicating music from every phase of Pink Floyd’s journey, from Ummagumma to The Division Bell and all albums in between, this tour reinforces TAPFS’s dedication to the heritage of Barrett, Waters, Gilmour, Wright & Mason with a show that pays sincere and genuine tribute to those legendary Pink Floyd productions.

Tickets starting at $39 are available online beginning February 11 at www.scfta.org, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa, or by calling 714.556.2787. For inquiries about group ticket savings of 10 or more, call the Group Services office at 714.755.0236.

Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Line ‘em up!

Line 'em up!

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

A drone captures the beauty of the Newport Coast hills


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

The Lincoln Club enters the OC Supervisor fray and names Pat Bates as their candidate

Fair Game Toms new headshotOkay conservatives, get your seat belts on. This weekend, the race for one side of the Orange County Board of Supervisors 5th District underwent a major upheaval.

But before we go there, let’s review.

Several months ago, Newport Beach City Councilmember and former two-time Mayor Diane Dixon was the announced candidate to battle for the Supervisor spot, then the 2nd District, opposite incumbent Democrat Katrina Foley

Republican Diane Harkey, a longtime politician from South County, was at the same time in the race for the 5th District.

Then, District lines were redrawn, moving Newport Beach from the 2nd District into the 5th. It also pulled the rug out from under incumbent Foley and forced her to also move to the 5th and run as not truly an incumbent.

At that time, Dixon was approached by the OC GOP to jump out of the Supervisor race, in order to clear the field for Harkey and put up a united front against Foley. So, Dixon moved over to run for the also newly redrawn 72nd Assembly seat, where the OC GOP figured she’d be the best candidate, with the best chance to win.

But before Dixon made the move, she reportedly did some polling of her own and let the party know that the numbers didn’t look good for Harkey and that she probably couldn’t beat Foley.

Still, the OC GOP encouraged the move. 

Then, lo and behold, John Moorlach, you remember him, former Supervisor and State Senator from Costa Mesa? Well, the story goes that John mentioned that he, too, wanted to run, again, and his polling showed he could beat both Harkey and Foley.

Oh, and did I also mention that Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon was also in the race all along? Kevin, if you remember, had been pretty much ostracized by the OC GOP since not getting out of Moorlach’s way in the last Supervisor election, perhaps allowing Foley to cruise in.

Okay, deep breath, now here’s where it gets interesting. Over the last few days, enter the Lincoln Club. You know them, the conservative/elite arm of the GOP? So, the Lincoln Club summons both Harkey and Muldoon and asks them both to exit the race so that they could, wait, not go with Moorlach, but instead recruit longtime party favorite Pat Bates, the current State Senator from the 36th District and a former OC Supervisor (2007-2014), to run for the office.

Both Harkey and Muldoon, however, told them that they’re not going anywhere.

In the meantime, nobody bothered to tell the OC GOP leadership that this was all going on, so they were caught off-guard, after previously endorsing Harkey.

But Bates, who unsuccessfully requested up front, when approached, to have the GOP slate for Supervisor cleared for her effort, reportedly raised some $100,000 just over the weekend, with another reported $100,000 coming her way from the Lincoln Club.

For those counting that’s $200,000 in just a couple of days. It sounds like they mean business.

So, what happens from here?

Does the OC GOP stay with their endorsement to Harkey, or perhaps attempt to reconvene their 60-member committee to somehow change their support to align with the Lincoln Club? What about the all-important OC Sheriff’s union that has also previously endorsed Harkey, along with OC Sheriff Don Barnes?

In the meantime, Foley continues to fly under the radar, unscathed, on the other side of the card with a party totally united behind her.

Assuming things stay the same, Harkey, Bates and Muldoon will have to spend big in their efforts to get out of the June primary, with the hopes of earning one of two spots for the November runoff. 

The only way November goes away is if one candidate gets 50%+1 of the vote in June. One would have to assume that the GOP will just split their party, with the winner facing Foley come November…assuming Foley somehow doesn’t get the 50%+1.

Meanwhile, Harkey, Muldoon and Bates, after spending all their money battling for June, and possibly beating each other up, will then send their winning, battled-and-bruised candidate off to challenge Foley…and then have to replenish their war chest at the same time. 

• • •

Reminds me of my old high school days. Three Newport-Mesa Unified School District students earned perfect ACT scores and one also went perfect on the SAT. Oh, no, I never came close to perfect, but I knew kids who did.

Anyway.

Newport Harbor High School junior Kent Wanlass is the one with the perfect ACT and SAT. He also runs cross country and track, and someday plans to study engineering.

Hey Kent, I love trains, too!

Schoolmate Zak Robertson, a senior, also got a perfect ACT. He’s been playing boys’ basketball at NHHS for four years, he’s president of the Lion’s Heart Club and is the campus lead for the Assistance League. He, too, plans to pursue a degree in engineering.

Across town, Alexandra Law, a junior from Corona del Mar High School, earned a perfect ACT, too. She’s been a competitive swimmer since she was young and will pursue a business degree at the next level.

Impressive stuff. Congrats to all of you!

• • •

Still on schools, the NMUSD Board of Education meets this afternoon/evening. It begins with a 3:30 p.m. Closed Session, followed by the Regular Meeting at 6 p.m. You can check out the full agenda here.

There’s a lot of good stuff on the agenda about a variety of interesting issues, but one that caught my attention was the adoption of re-drawn trustee area boundaries that follows the most recent census figures.

It seems that four maps are up for consideration. Area 6 Trustee Krista Weigand said, “I like the maps that get us into compliance with minimal disruption to the current boundaries.”

Area 4 Trustee Karen Yelsey seemed to concur, “I would prefer making as few changes as possible based on the new census information.”

While Board President and Area 5 Trustee Michelle Barto added, “I think the demographer did a great job with the first map submitted at balancing the original intent of representing neighborhoods and attendance areas.”

I agree, so I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest that they will adopt the proposed map below, which is titled Conceptual Trustee Areas Scenario 1.

However, to check out all four, you can go here

Fair Game Conceptual District Map Scenario 1

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Courtesy of NMUSD


A magical CdM morning

A magical CdM morning Wild Art SNN 2.8

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

It almost seems mystical


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members: 

Some of you have already received new, green-lid carts for recycling yard waste, food waste and other biodegradable materials as part of a state-mandated organic waste recycling program that took effect January 1. The cart rollout began last week and will continue through the end of March. Pickup of organic recycling will begin the week after the carts are delivered, on the same day as trash and standard recycling are collected. 

The organic waste recycling cart delivery includes educational materials explaining how to recycle properly to meet the state’s environmental goals. I encourage you to read through the booklet and consult the following resources for more information: 

Click here for a short video on how to separate and recycle organic waste.

–Visit www.newportbeachca.gov/recycle to find out when the organic recycling carts will arrive in your neighborhood (use the search function at the top of the page). 

–Read through our Frequently Asked Questions document for answers to common questions and concerns. 

–Collection days have changed for about 14,000 households. To find out your trash and recycling pickup day, go to www.newportbeachca.gov/findmycollectionday.

–Street sweeping days have also been adjusted in the neighborhoods with collection day changes. These neighborhoods include portions of the Balboa Peninsula (21st Street to G Street) and Corona del Mar (north of Coast Highway), Irvine Terrance, the Port Streets and the north tip of Newport Heights. These changes will avoid conflicts, address parking conditions and maintain street sweeping effectiveness. For maps and information, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/2022sweeping or call the City’s Utilities Department at 949.644.3011. 

Residents Encouraged to Apply for Aviation, General Plan Committees

Aviation Committee. The city is seeking community representatives from Council District 1 to fill an unscheduled vacancy on the Aviation Committee. If you are a resident of District 1 and are interested in applying, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy for more information. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. 

General Plan Update Steering Committee. The city is seeking community representatives for three open seats on the reestablished General Plan Update Steering Committee. If you are interested in applying, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy for more information. The deadline to apply is 12 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 16. 

JWA General Aviation Update Meeting February 10 

John Wayne Airport staff (JWA) will host a community meeting on February 10 with two sessions, 4-5 p.m. and 5-6 p.m., at the airport’s Community Room, 3160 Airway Ave., Costa Mesa to provide an update on the General Aviation Improvement Program (GAIP). The public is invited to attend in person or via webstream or phone. For more information, see this flier, or visit the airport’s GAIP website

Ocean Piers Maintenance Project Underway 

Maintenance work has begun at the Balboa and Newport piers. During the next few months, Associated Pacific Constructors, Inc., a city contractor, will be performing inspections and routine maintenance repairs underwater and underneath the decks of the city’s ocean piers. The Balboa and Newport piers were originally built in 1940. While the decks are constructed of relatively low-maintenance concrete, the timber support structures below the decks are continuously impacted by the ocean waves, tides and the harsh marine environment. For the duration of the maintenance work, both piers will remain open to the public, restaurant patrons and small delivery/trash trucks. Please exercise caution when walking next to the construction zones and contact Public Works at 949.644.3311 with any questions or concerns. 

COVID-19 Cases in Newport Beach 

As of February 3, the total cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Newport Beach was 8,601 (a decrease after the number was adjusted downward on January 31 because of an earlier reporting error). The total number of cases in Orange County as of February 3 was 521,431, an increase of 18,139 cases since January 27. The number of recovered COVID-19 patients countywide as of February 3 was 410,516. These figures are provided to Orange County by the California Department of Public Health. 

Homelessness Update 

–City Net, Newport Beach’s contract social services agency, toured senior apartment buildings with two men who were awarded Emergency Housing Vouchers. Emergency Housing Vouchers are funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and allow people to pay affordable rent based on their fixed incomes. Nine people experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach have been awarded vouchers. The voucher program is administered by the Orange County Housing Authority. City Net is assisting Newport Beach clients with completing the necessary paperwork, obtaining bank statements, touring potential rental apartments and more. 

–Seventeen (17) people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter. 

–City Net enrolled two people into its services and completed a Vulnerability Index Assessment. City Net utilizes the Vulnerability Index Assessment to screen clients on a number of factors to determine proper placement in the county’s Continuum of Care system. Factors include age, health issues and length of time being unsheltered. 

–To donate to those experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach, visit our Good Giving Program web page

Volunteers Needed for Homeless Point in Time Count 

Sign up to help shape homeless services in Orange County for the next several years as part of the Point in Time Count, February 22 through February 24. Point in Time is a biennial count of people experiencing homelessness on a given night. The count provides vital information that helps the county better understand homelessness in the community and guides the way the county and its partners respond to homelessness in Orange County. 

Volunteer opportunities are available leading up to the event and during the Point in Time Count event. Sign up at www.everyonecountsoc.org/.

Testing and Vaccination Resources 

Self-collection, at-home COVID-19 Test Kits are available at no cost to people who work or live in Orange County and can be ordered online at https://ochealthinfo.com/covidtest. In addition, free tests are now available from the federal government through www.COVIDtests.gov or by calling 800.232.0233. You can order up to four rapid tests to be sent to your home address, which will be mailed at no cost through the U.S. Postal Service within seven-12 days.

Vaccines continue to be widely available throughout Orange County for walk-in, same day and future appointments. Individuals who are not yet vaccinated or boosted against COVID-19, or are eligible for a third dose (due to immunocompromise conditions) are encouraged to visit a local pharmacy or healthcare provider, or go online to www.Vaccines.gov, https://MyTurn.ca.gov, or https://Othena.com to schedule a vaccination appointment. For more information on COVID-19 information and resources, including case counts, vaccination and testing in Orange County, visit https://ochealthinfo.com/covid

Insider’s Guide for the Newport Beach City Council Meeting on February 8, 2022 

Our next City Council meeting is Tuesday, Feb. 8. Items that may be of interest are highlighted below. The entire agenda, and all reports, can be viewed here

A study session will begin at 4 p.m. Agenda items include: 

–The council will hear an update on activities by the City Council Ad Hoc Redistricting Committee. The Ad Hoc Redistricting Committee has been reviewing proposed changes to the council district maps based on 2020 Census data, in compliance with federal and state laws and the City Charter, to ensure equal population distribution among the city’s seven districts. Staff will present a recommendation from the committee on proposed Council redistricting maps for input. An updated map with revised districts may be considered by the City Council in March. 

–City staff will discuss and seek council direction on the continued use of public rights-of-way for outdoor dining by restaurants on Balboa Island and in the Newport Pier area. 

–Be Well OC will provide an update on the implementation of its Newport Beach Mobile Crisis Response Unit. The Be Well OC team will be present in the community 12 hours a day, seven days a week, and will provide in-community assessment and stabilization of individuals experiencing mental health or substance use challenges. The team will also be responsible for providing information and referrals, and support and case management. The new service will work in concert with the city’s Police and Fire Departments and its homeless outreach team. 

–Staff and representatives from Trellis International will present an update on the Community Impact Team Program. Trellis is working under a city grant to support community beautification projects within Newport Beach while closing the employment gap associated with homeless individuals. Trellis works with those experiencing homelessness and housing insecurity to develop the job skills necessary to re-enter the job market. During the past several months, Trellis’ Community Impact Teams (CIT) have been conducting various volunteer work projects within the city. Staff, as well as Trellis representatives, will present an update on the CIT program and some of the many volunteer projects completed to date. 

The regular session begins at 6 p.m., with the following items of note:

Consent Calendar: 

–Award of a construction contract of $241,000 to Escondido-based Western State Builders for refurbishment of the Civic Center Dog Park. If approved, the project would replace worn-out synthetic turf, uneven sidewalks and fence screening and add a new shade structure to the small-dog area. 

Public Hearings: 

–The council will consider a resolution to adopt the city’s Housing Element update for 2021-2029, which amends the Newport Beach General Plan. The proposed update will serve as a guide for implementation of city housing policies through 2029. As required by state law, the update examines current housing needs, estimates future housing needs, and establishes goals, policies and programs while demonstrating capacity to accommodate the Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) allocation of 4,845 new housing units. The Housing Element update has been in development for more than two years, a process that includes nearly 50 public workshops, meetings and opportunities for community input. The public is invited to review the latest draft of the Housing Element update at www.newportbeachca.gov/DraftHEUpdate.

–Potential approval of 10 outdoor sculptures and four alternates for Phase VII of the temporary sculpture exhibit at Civic Center Park. In January, the city’s Arts Commission formally recommended the 10 sculptures and four alternates, which were selected through a survey of Newport Beach residents. If approved, the Phase VII sculptures will be installed this summer and remain on display for two years. 

Editor’s Note: Stu News received City Manager’s Updates on Friday, Feb. 4 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Regattas and Races…

Regattas & Races 2.8

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

NHYC

Harbor 20 Winter Series 

February 6

Finn (17 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Michael Downing, NHYC, Total 66, Net 41

2 Brad Dwan, NHYC, Total 64, Net 48

3 Bob Martin, NHYC, Total 74, Net 49

4 Paul Marshall, NHYC, Total 72, Net 51

5 Phil Ramming, NHYC, Total 80, Net 55

6 James Lawson, YCE, Total 83, Net 61

7 Bob Martin, MBYC, Total 83, Net 61

8 Brady Kennedy, NHYC, Total 88, Net 66

9 David Wood, NHYC, Total 93, Net 68

10 Keith Yonkers, NHYC, Total 94, Net 69

11 David Wood, NHYC, Total 93, Net 71

12 Peter Connally, NHYC, Total 100, Net 76

13 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 102, Net 77

14 Glenn Selvin, ABYC, Total 102, Net 79

Harbor 20 A (15 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Thompson/Conzelman, NHYC/BCYC/LIYC, Total 47, Net 28

2 McDowell/Weightman, BYC, Total 60, Net 37

3 Gloege/Hall, NHYC, Total 84, Net 56

4 Yates/Kincaid, NHYC, Total 82, Net 57

5 Bose/Elliot, BCYC, Total 88, Net 62

6 Allen/Pinckney, NHYC, Total 93, Net 65

7 David Camerini, UCISA, Total 100, Net 73

8 Novak/Leach, BYC, Total 112, Net 82

9 K. Wiese/A. Wiese, NHYC, Total 120, Net 87

10 Nick Madigan, NHYC, Total 121, Net 88

11 Thorne/Trebler, BYC, Total 118, Net 88

12 M. Moosman/J. Moosman, BYC, Total 126, Net 93

13 A. Campbell/T. Campbell, NHYC, Total 123, Net 93

14 Adam Deermount, NHYC, Total 127, Net 94

Harbor 20 B (15 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Cheadle/Schupak, BYC, Total 75, Net 43

2 Kathryn Reed, ABYC, Total 71, Net 43

3 E. Kimball/A. Costello-Kimball, ABYC, Total 66, Net 47

4 John Whitney, NHYC, Total 76, Net 50

5 Tom Fischbacher, BSSB, Total 88, Net 57

6 Buckingham/Aschieris, NHYC, Total 101, Net 69

7 Watanabe/Sutherland, UCISA, Total 112, Net 78

8 Corkett/Corkett Jr., NHYC, Total 122, Net 80

9 Tad Springer, NHYC, Total 110, Net 80

10 H. Duncan/W. Duncan, NHYC, Total 124, Net 82

11 Win Fuller, NHYC, Total 132, Net 93

12 James Malm, NHYC, Total 127, Net 95

13 Chan/Logan, NHYC, Total 140, Net 110

14 McDonald/Hambleton, NHYC, Total 148, Net 113

15 Andrew Tosh, SBYC, Total 149, Net 115

Harbor 20 C (15 sailed, 3 discards)

1 D. Haynes/P. Haynes, BCYC, Total 40, Net 22

2 Foy/Noring, Scuttlebutt, Total 53, Net 36

3 Bill Brooks, NHYC, Total 60, Net 42

4 Dick Somers, NHYC, Total 66, Net 44

5 C. Harrison/B. Harrison, NHYC, Total 62, Net 45

6 DeLis/T. Fischbeck, BYC, Total 70, Net 48

7 Leach/Novak, NHYC, Total 84, Net 57

8 C. Kovacevic/D. Kovacevic, NHYC, Total 78, Net 57

9 Alfano/Beam, ALYC, Total 87, Net 64

10 M. Morgan/L. Morgan, NHYC, Total 95, Net 68

BYC

2021-2022 Sunkist Series 

February 6

Race #4 – PHRF A Division (Distance 2.8)

1 It’s OK, Andrews 49.9, Purcell/Rose, BYC, -48

Elapsed: 1:10:55, Corrected: 1:13:09

2 Destroyer’s Kite 35, OD35, Jim Bailey, NHYC, 39

Elapsed: 1:16:12, Corrected: 1:14:23

3 Heartbeat 4, J125, Charles Brewer, NHYC, 35 

Elapsed: 1:26:26, Corrected: 1:24:48

Race #4 – PHRF B Division (Distance 3.3)

1 Doubletime, Andrews 38, Andrews/Lynch, BYC, 63

Elapsed: 1:22:01, Corrected: 1:18:33

2 Legacy, J105, Brian Dougherty, NHYC/LIYC, 72

Elapsed: 1:22:33, Corrected: 1:18:35

3 Problem Child, B32, Dan Rossen, BCYC, 61 

Elapsed: 1:21:58, Corrected: 1:18:37

4 Magoo, Bene 36.7, Thornley/Nistor, BCYC, 81

Elapsed: 1:38:38, Corrected: 1:34:11

5 Mr. Pongs, Columbia 30, CW Hwang, BYC, 59 

Elapsed: 1:39:35, Corrected: 1:36:20

Race #4 – PHRF C Division (Distance 2.8)

1 Violetta, Davidson 34, Jane Hartley, BCYC, 96

Elapsed: 1:18:47, Corrected: 1:14:18

2 Radical Departure, Platu 25, Mark Rosene, BYC, 114

Elapsed: 1:34:48, Corrected: 1:29:29

3 Stella Maris, C&C38, Theodore Barry, NHYC, 112 

Elapsed: 1:51.56, Corrected: 1:46:42

Race #4 – PHRF D Division (Distance 1.47)

1 Campaign II, C&C34, Mark Glackin, BYC, 150

Elapsed: 1:08:48, Corrected: 1:05:08

2 Silk, Harbor 25, John Hanscom, SSYC, 171

Elapsed: 1:20:20, Corrected: 1:16:09

3 Whisper, RDS29-4, Bob Dodds, ALYC, 150 

Elapsed: 1:21:50, Corrected: 1:18:10

4 Daydreams, Pearson, Rich Fischbeck, BYC, 190

Elapsed: DNF

BYC

2021-2022 Sunkist Series 

February 5

Harbor 20 A Fleet (12 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Shana’s Secret, Conzelman/Thompson, NHYC/LIYC, Total 55, Net 19

2 Aquavit, David Camerini, UCISA, Total 43, Net 23

3 Only Child, Bose/Elliot, BCYC, Total 44, Net 25

4 Jubilee, Yates/Kincaid, NHYC, Total 68, Net 32

5 Zephyr, Helias/Allen, NHYC, Total 75, Net 39

6 No Travel Required, A. Campbell/B. Campbell, NHYC, Total 118, Net 82

7 Bay Bird, Jon Novak, BYC, Total 120, Net 84

8 Fortunatelee, Walter Johnson, BYC, Total 121, Net 85

9 Amazing Grace, McDowell/Weightman, BYC, Total 122, Net 86

10 Blue Skies, G. Thorne/K. Thorne, BYC, Total 124, Net 88

11 Moose & Squirrel, Max Moosman, BYC, Total 135, Net 99

Harbor 20 B Fleet (12 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Summer Dream, Cheadle/Schypak, BYC, Total 36, Net 20

2 Wood In It Be Nice, Reed/Heavrin, ABYC, Total 54, Net 33

3 n/a, Greg Newman, BYC, Total 83, Net 38

4 Dragon Lady, E. Kimball/A. Kimball/Sangster, ALYC, Total 88, Net 43

5 Spirit, P. Haynes/D. Haynes, BCYC, Total 97, Net 52

6 Salt N’ Win, Win Fuller, NHYC, Total 79, Net 22

7 Sail Dates, T. Corkett/T. Corkett Jr., NHYC, Total 116, Net 71

8 Chloe, Campbell/Stratman, BYC, Total 118, Net 73

9 12, McDonald, NHYC, Total 118, Net 73

10 Hula Girl, Hill/Manning, BCYC/Oasis, Total 120, Net 75

11 Rhapsody in Blue, C. Killian/P. Killian, BYC/BCYC, Total 123, Net 78

12 Tryst, James Malm, NHYC, Total 147, Net 102

13 Emoji, A. Tosh/T. Tosh, SBYC, Total 155, Net 110

14 First in Class, Roxanne Chan, NHYC, Total 155, Net 110

Harbor 20 C Fleet (12 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Whatever, Hurlimann/Fischbacher, SSC, Total 44, Net 22

2 n/a, P. Bretschger/K. Bretschger, BYC, Total 48, Net 28

3 Spiritus, Grable/Trebler, BYC, Total 105, Net 57

4 Ping, A. Wiese/K. Wiese, NHYC, Total 109, Net 61

5 Wiggit, M. Morgan/L. Morgan, NHYC, Total 112, Net 64

6 Undecided, C. Kovacevic/D. Kovacevic, NHYC, Total 116, Net 68

7 Bula, Watson/Karjala, BYC, Total 124, Net 76

8 Kalani II, Ibbetson/Thimton, SYC, Total 128, Net 80

9 Ruthless, Emil Pilafidis, BCYC, Total 151, Net 103

10 Salute, Rob Hambleton , NHYC/Oasis, Total 154, Net 106

11 Dulce Viento, Ogier/Drake, BYC, Total 156, Net 108

12 n/a, Rossen/Jack M, BCYC, Total 156, Net 108

13 Dragon Lady, Sangster/Kimball, LIYC, Total 158, Net 110

14 SkipHer, Wolk/Hayden, BYC, Total 162, Net 114

15 SkipHer, Tighe/Lenhart, BYC, Total 177, Net 129

Thistle Fleet (9 sailed, 2 discards)

1 Simmons/Ullman, BYC, Total 26, Net 10

2 Larzelere/McDaniel, BYC, Total 29, Net 13

3 R. Maxwell/M. Maxwell, BYC, Total 27, Net 18

4 Meyer/White, LMVYC, Total 43, Net 27

5 S. Smith/J. Smith, VYC, Total 61, Net 45

6 Mason/Hite, SCCYC, Total 63, Net 47

7 Poltorak/Smith, MBYC, Total 63, Net 47

Laser Fleet (12 sailed, 3 discards)

1 Martin Bonsager, BYC, Total 54, Net 18

2 Gator Cook, BYC, Total 38, Net 22

3 Brett Hemphill, BYC, Total 44, Net 25

4 Rob Vandervort, BYC, Total 45, Net 27

5 Alan Andrews, BYC, Total 66, Net 30

6 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 82, Net 46

7 Rich Luttrell, BYC, Total 94, Net 61

8 Mark Rosene, BYC, Total 101, Net 65

9 Jeff Linden, BYC, Total 111, Net 75

10 Matt Forman, BYC, Total 135, Net 99

11 Glen Tilly, SSC, Total 144, Net 108

Lido 14 A Fleet (9 sailed, 2 discards)

1 K. McRae/J. McRae, ABYC, Total 19, Net 9

2 Papadopoulos/Foley, WORSA, Total 14, Net 10

3 Long/Biram, BYC, Total 35, Net 25

4 O. Eichhorn/M. Eichhorn, WLYC, Total 45, Net 35

Lido 14 B Fleet (9 sailed, 2 discards)

1 Lange/Mulcaire, ALYC, Total 9, Net 7

2 Boudreaux/Massey, BYC, Total 30, Net 18

3 Fischbeck/Stipe, BYC, Total 31, Net 19

4 Long/Swan, BYC, Total 46, Net 34

5 A. Waniek/M.B. Waniek, BYC, Total 49, Net 37

Adult Sabot A Fleet (11 sailed, 2 discards)

1 Scott Finkboner, MBYC, Total 16, Net 11

2 Lanny Coon, MBYC, Total 34, Net 24

3 Molly Lynch, BYC, Total 69, Net 33

4 Lynn Acosta, DPYC, Total 56, Net 40

5 Karen Luttell, BYC, Total 77, Net 41

6 Susan K. Jennings, BYC/NHYC, Total 105, Net 69

7 Gail Kalscheur, BYC, Total 94, Net 70

8 Bob Reilly, BYC, Total 100, Net 77

9 Dana Fischbeck, BYC, Total 124, Net 88

10 Dennis Allison, BYC, Total 145, Net 109

11 Karen Stockman, BYC, Total 152, Net 116

12 Mike Bartell, BYC, Total 169, Net 133

13 Paul Blank, BYC, Total 169, Net 133

14 Matt Forman, BYC, Total 169, Net 133

15 Erika Foy, SSC, Total 170, Net 134

16 Susan D. Jennings, BYC, Total 173, Net 137

17 Cindy Heavrin, ABYC, Total 198, Net 162

Adult Sabot B Fleet (11 sailed, 2 discards)

1 Teresa Power, BYC, Total 34, Net 18

2 Carol Harmon, BYC, Total 39, Net 23

3 Eva Evans, BYC, Total 66, Net 50

4 Sandra Lindsey, BYC, Total 71, Net 55

5 Debbie Meany, BYC, Total 77, Net 61

6 Linda Underland, BYC, Total 77, Net 61

7 Elaine Linhoff, BYC, Total 79, Net 63

News relating to racing in or around Newport Harbor should be forwarded to Tom Johnson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


School Notes

NMUSD to hold virtual parent education webinar

Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) is holding a virtual parent education webinar addressing, “Stressed Out Students & What to Do About It.” It will be held via Zoom on Wednesday, Feb. 16 from 6-7 p.m.

The session will focus on identifying and supporting student with high stress levels, depression and anxiety.

The featured presenter is Dr. Lucy Vezzuto, renowned and revered in the field of student mental health, social emotional learning and restorative practices. Using her compassionate nature, she draws on her extensive training, studies and experiences to improve the lives of all who she reaches. Her impressive list of accolades includes teacher, Fulbright Scholar, meditation leader, professor and recipient of the Ambassador of Peace Award. 

For this special event, Dr. Vezzuto will focus on supporting students who are experiencing high levels of stress and facing issues with depression and anxiety.

To register for the webinar, go here.


Mile events for every age, even your dog

Spirit Run provides running and walking events for all ages. It hosts competitive races and celebrates winners with an array of prizes. It also offers walking events for individual adults and families to enjoy together. In this “spirit,” Spirit Run presents multiple mile events for adults, kids, families and dogs.

Mile events Elite finish tape

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Photos courtesy of Spirit Run

Elite Mile Women at the finish tape in the 2019 Spirit Run

Mile options for adults

Individual adults choose whether to race, jog, or walk a mile at Spirit Run. Spirit Run’s adult mile offerings are organized by age and anticipated finishing time as follows:

~Family Mile: All ages, finish in 10 or more minutes.

~Open Mile: Age 18-39, finish in 10 minutes or less.

~Masters Mile: Age 40 & older, finish in 10 minutes or less.

~Elite Mile: All ages, men finish in 4:15 minutes or less; women, 4:50 minutes or less.

~Dog Mile: All ages, finish in 15 minutes or less (Humans with their dogs on leashes.).

For further details on these mile events, and when and where they take place, visit the Adult Events and Schedule and Maps pages at www.newportspiritrun.org.

Mile events Youth Mile

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Youth Mile start line in the 2019 Spirit Run

Mile options for kids

For children, Spirit Run offers six 1/4- to one-mile races, and a dog mile race, broken down by age groups:

~Mile: Age 7-18 (4 separate races).

~1/2 Mile: Ages 5-6.

~1/4 Mile: Age 4.

~Dog Mile: Age 13 & older (Kids with their dogs on leashes.).

For further details on these mile events, and when and where they take place, visit the Youth Events and Schedule and Maps pages at www.newportspiritrun.org.

Mile events dog milers

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Dog Milers taking off in the 2019 Spirit Run

Mile options for families

Spirit Run hosts the Family Mile for parents and children to run or walk together. Fortunately, by participating together, families save on entry fees. Rather than paying the individual entry fee for each family member, a family who registers for the Family Mile pays a single, discounted price. For example, the Family Mile entry fee for a family of five is 40% less than if each member registered separately. For details about the Family Mile and where and when it takes place, visit the Family Events and Schedule and Maps pages at www.newportspiritrun.org.

Mile events Elite Mile Women

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Elite Mile Women compete in Elite Mile during the 2020 Spirit Run

~Mile discount

Spirit Run is currently offering a discount on all mile entries. Use promotional code MILE at checkout by February 13 to save 15%. Registration is available at www.newportspiritrun.org/registration

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Spirit Run.


CdM Chamber to hold ribbon cutting to welcome RE/MAX Fine Homes

CdM Chamber RE MAX office

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The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce is holding a ribbon cutting to celebrate the grand opening of RE/MAX Fine Homes/Canaday Group on Thursday, Feb. 10 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Come join the community festivities! In addition to the ribbon cutting ceremony, there will be a photo shoot, catered appetizers, Champagne/refreshments and networking. RE/MAX Fine Homes is located at 2801 E. Coast Highway, Corona del Mar.


Five-time Grammy winner Jacob Collier makes debut at Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents five-time Grammy winner, Jacob Collier, making his Segerstrom Center debut on April 10 at 8 p.m. in Segerstrom Hall. The London-based Collier has been dubbed by many as one of the most innovative musicians of his generation.

Five time Grammy winner Collier

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Courtesy of scfta.org

Jacob Collier

The DJESSE World Tour concert experience will include selections from his highly celebrated quadruple album called DJESSE: 50 songs, divided between four volumes, with each operating within a separate musical universe of sound, style and genre. 

At the age of 17, London-based crossover jazz musician Collier gained an international following thanks to his uploads of multi-track, one-man covers of classic songwriters like Bacharach, Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson as well as experimental originals. The inspiring young YouTube prodigy graduated to veteran performer with stints on the stages of prestigious venues all around the world and for one-night-only he’ll be gracing the stage of Segerstrom Hall.

Single tickets start at $39 and are now available online at www.scfta.org, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa, or by calling 714.556.2787. For inquiries about group ticket savings of 10 or more, call the Group Services office at 714.755.0236.

Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Not sure what all the buzz is about? Find out on March 1

The CdM Home Tour preparations are well underway for the 48th Annual CdM Home Tour; the PTA’s only fundraiser of the year to benefit students at CdM Middle & High schools.

The CdM Home Tour is an annual event that takes place on Tuesday, March 1. Parents, residents, local businesses and community members support the school by purchasing tickets, advertising, underwriting, or volunteering for this one-day community event. Proceeds provide teacher training, classroom supplies, student enrichment programs, technology and campus improvements.

Not sure what residence 2.4

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Courtesy of CdM Home Tour

One of the residences on the 48th Annual CdM Home Tour

Tickets are on sale now and include a breakfast reception, in-person tours of several stunning homes in the Newport Beach/Corona del Mar area, a delicious luncheon, a variety of beautiful boutiques during lunch and a fun After Party at Bliss Home & Design in Corona del Mar. This year’s breakfast, luncheon and boutique takes place at the Newport Beach Civic Center for the first time. The venue boasts an abundance of outdoor space, convenient location and great facilities for dining and browsing the boutique. 

For families or local residents that are unable to attend the day’s festivities or want to show additional support, underwriting packages, “neighborhood ads” or “pet ads” from just $50 are also available.

Tickets can be purchased along with more details on the Home Tour at www.cdmhometour.com, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Follow CdM Home Tour on social media to keep up to date with all the news – Instagram: @cdmhometour2022 and Facebook: Corona del Mar Home Tour.

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the CdM Mar Home Tour.


Garbage time includes new recycling carts and changes to collection days

Newport Beach residents will begin receiving new green-lid carts this week that are designed for recycling yard waste, food waste and other biodegradable materials as part of a state-mandated organic waste recycling program that took effect January 1.

The green-lid carts will be delivered by the city’s contractor, CR&R Environmental Services, sometime between February 1 and March 31, accompanied by educational materials explaining how to recycle properly to meet the state’s environmental goals. 

The newly expanded recycling program will utilize three separate carts: a green-lid cart for organic waste recycling, which includes food waste and landscaping waste items; a blue-lid cart for mixed recyclables (cans, metal, glass, paper, plastics); and a black-lid cart (anything not recyclable) for remaining solid waste to be disposed of in landfills. 

An optional two-gallon pail to collect organic materials (food scraps) in the kitchen is also available.

Garbage time recycling carts and pail

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

CR&R’s recycling carts and pail for city residents to comply with the state-mandated organic waste recycling program

For other residents’ needs, including those with space constraints, smaller carts will be provided upon request, and for disabled residents, free assistance continues to help place their carts curbside each week. This service is also available to other residents for an additional fee.

The new state law, Senate Bill 1383 requires all California residents and businesses to recycle organic waste, including food waste and green waste, in addition to standard recycling materials. The rules aim to reduce organic waste sent to landfills by 75% by 2025, as a strategy to address climate change and reduce the impacts on landfills. As organic waste decomposes in landfills it emits methane, a highly polluting greenhouse gas. 

Residents can visit www.newportbeachca.gov/recycle to find out when the new carts will arrive in their neighborhood. 

Additionally, some collection days and street sweeping days have also changed to accommodate the expanded recycling program. Residents can visit www.newportbeachca.gov/findmycollectionday and www.newportbeachca.gov/2022sweeping for more information on collection day and street sweeping changes. 

As part of the new contract, CR&R is updating its collection routes to provide greater efficiency, cost savings and safety, as well as reducing truck traffic and emissions. As a result, about 14,000 residences will have their collection days changed, beginning in February. 

One final note, residents will also be required to put all materials inside the proper carts. Waste cannot be left in bags or loose on the street.


The beginnings of Balboa

By DUNCAN FORGEY

In 1905, the Palmer kids jumped off the very first Red Car from Los Angeles and ran to the sandy beach as fast as they could. Their parents knew this day was to become part of Southern California history. Mom, Dad and their three children had left Pasadena less than two hours ago and now found themselves in a totally new and exciting land. Rapid transit had come to Newport’s Balboa Peninsula. 

The beginnings of Balboa

Courtesy of Orange County Archives

Balboa, 1900

The vast ocean lay on one side and a swampy harbor on the other. All was backdropped by beautiful snowcapped mountains to the east. How unique this Balboa was to these landlubbers from LA County. The kids had heard about Newport because their father and his business associates traveled here to fish and hunt duck. But now electric Red Cars, ran from LA to McFadden’s Wharf.  Soon it would go all the way to Balboa when the next leg opened up. The trip took a little over an hour and along the way they got to see parts of Long Beach, Huntington Beach and vast agricultural lands of turn-of-the-century Southern California. 

After the trolley bridged the Santa Ana River it turned right and clattered down the peninsula to the depot near McFadden’s Wharf. This was the end of the line until Balboa was opened shortly. Legitimate discussions among the powerful took place regarding a bridge over the harbor entrance so the Red Cars could reach Corona del Mar. This was not to happen.   

The City of Los Angeles had a population of 102,479 and in business circles of the city, there were discussions about investing in this new resort [Balboa]. Many in LA and Pasadena had watched Santa Monica and Redondo grow, but this Balboa/Newport area was different. Plus, it now had the Red Car. 

The beginnings of electric red cars

Courtesy of Orange County Archives

Pacific Electric Red Cars

The beginnings of modern-day Balboa, however, started over two decades earlier. Brothers by the name of Abbott settled near Tustin in the late 1800s. In these early days, ranchers and farmers were searching for ways to get their products to the larger markets of LA, San Francisco and San Diego.

One of these brothers, Edward J. Abbott, a world traveler and adventurer, saw opportunity. He had traveled throughout Europe and experienced Egypt, where he climbed atop the Cheops Pyramid at the impressive age of 60. 

Enthralled by the Pacific Ocean for a lifetime, he began collecting shells as a hobby, while studying the many critters that lived along the shoreline. During a trip to the Hawaiian Islands, he brought back 10 large barrels of tropical shells.  This catapulted his hobby into a business and made him the first conchologist in Southern California. 

Initiated by this love of seashells, Abbott figured others might want to return home with beautiful reminders of the seaside. It was not yet 1900, and this introduction of shell collecting would eventually denude local beaches. Within two generations, Newport’s coastline and beaches were no longer scattered with some of the prettiest aspects of the ocean.

In 1891, his natural curiosity and love of the ocean secured Abbott to the peninsula permanently. He bought a swamp and overflow land which was a portion of Section 35. It lay between today’s 9th and L streets which is all of the current township of Balboa. Abbott built his white house between B and C streets and immediately set out to beautify his newly acquired land. He planted the peninsula’s first trees near Palm Street. He also planted Monterey cypress trees along a knoll near Bay Island. The sandy soil was so poor that trees struggled, so Abbott buried large Newport Bay sharks beneath each tree to provide nourishment. Additionally, he built small shallow trenches to assist in collecting the little fresh water that was available. The trees took root and lasted until decades later when street upgrades forced their removal.    

Abbott took in partner Joseph Ferguson and established the Bayside Tract of land. This encompassed most of what is today’s Balboa Village. They encouraged the purchase of sandy lots for homes and businesses which created the town of Balboa. 

The beginnings of Balboa Hotel

Courtesy of Orange County Archives

Balboa Hotel, 1906

Turn-of-the-19th-century Newport Bay was a hunter’s and fisherman’s paradise. Local kids told stories of being surrounded in natural abundance.  Large schools of fish of every type swam in the ocean and the bay. Lobsters, clams and abalones were accessible with little effort. Plus, the skies teemed with ducks, resulting in Rufus Sanborn and a group of wealthy LA businessmen buying Bay Island for $350 and opening up a private duck club. 

Life was simple. Roads were rough, mail was unreliable, and supplies came in by ship, wagons and eventually cars. There were little improvements for the residents and structures were self-made. Vast open space surrounded the hamlet offering no real infrastructure. Case in point: Dr. Seeber was hunting and accidently got shot. The wounded man was taken to Abbott’s shell shack for first aid. The decision was made that the only place for proper medical support was Santa Ana. By the time word got to Dr. C.D. Ball and he hitched up his horse and buggy, rode to McFadden’s Landing, met a boat and was rowed across the bay, it had been hours. Dr. Seeber died of his wound before Dr. Ball’s arrival. 

Spread over the large beaches, like crosses on a battlefield graveyard, were thousands of intricate shells once home to living organisms. Mollusk, clam, mussel and abalone shells littered the beaches. Abbott sensed something special about this place, with its vast beaches, pounding waves, long peninsula, marshy bay and of course, a seemingly endless supply of seashells. Finding such a fertile habitat, he immediately started to mine his newly found treasure.  Abbott collected barrel after barrel of abalone shells, which he polished and sold.

Abbott’s conch shack was located where Palm and the Ferry Landing is today, giving the area the name of Abbott’s Landing. This name oftentimes became confused with another important person in Newport’s early development, Captain Moses Abbott. He was the captain and master of the side wheel steamer Vaquero; a vitally important ship shipping out of the first McFadden’s Landing located at the Castaways. 

The beginnings of Peninsula Point

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of Orange County Archives

Peninsula Point, 1923

In his later years, Edward J. Abbott built a small steamboat intended for excursions and ocean trips for visitors. The federal government refused to issue the necessary permit to operate, so he was forced to take the vessel to Lake Elsinore. When loading the boat on a railway car, Abbott was seriously injured which was believed to have led to his death in 1885. 

His Balboa land holdings were transferred to a brother-in-law, Clinton Andre.  Much of the peninsula was now the property of Andre, who began subdividing the land. He sold the first home to Santa Ana attorney E.E. Keech, which was the beginning of a 135-year process of growth and development that we can see in today’s Newport Beach.   

The beginnings of Robins garage

Courtesy of Bob Robins

Theodore Robins’ Balboa garage

By 1904, many future founders of Newport Beach believing in the potential of the peninsula and harbor made Balboa their home. W.S. Collins, J.P. Greely, Joe Ferguson, Joseph Beek, Frank Vallely, Theodore Robins and F.W. Harding and others hopscotched over to the peninsula making efforts to establish businesses and sell lots to new residents. By the end of 1905 with the arrival of the Pacific Electric Railway Company (Red Cars), the construction of the Balboa Pavilion and the opening of the Balboa Hotel, an ever-increasing number of tourists and investors came to Newport Harbor. These accomplishments led to the City of Newport Beach being incorporated in 1906 with a population of 206 citizens. Because of these pioneers, Newport Beach was well on its way to becoming one of the most well-known resort cities on the West Coast. 

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Duncan Forgey, a lifelong resident of Newport Beach, now makes his home in Hawaii. He is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport. Forgey’s book “Flyin’ Kai: A Pelican’s Tale,” is scheduled to be released in February 2022. It is a tale of a rebellious adolescent brown pelican that leaves his home on Anacapa Island to explore the mainland. He arrives in Newport Beach and his adventures begin. He is immediately confronted with an intense conflict between humans and nature. This novel will be enjoyed by young adults, friends of the environment and aging baby boomers.


Take Five: Meet Anne Parzick, CdM resident with a passion for helping Guatemalan kids

By AMY SENK

I was talking to a few friends of mine who are elementary school teachers in Corona del Mar, asking them about interesting people in the community, people I should interview for columns, people who are making a difference in the world in positive ways. One name kept coming up – Anne Parzick, a woman in town with two kids who has a passion for the Central American country of Guatemala and the families and kids who live there. For years, she’s been shipping or bringing them books and sports gear and toys, paying for tuition and offering support. I reached out to learn more.

Take Five Meet Anne Parzick

Photos courtesy of Anne Parzick

Anne Parzick

Q: When did you begin your love affair with Guatemala, and how did that morph into charitable work? 

A: We first went in the summer of 2014, when Calvin and Wade [her sons] were 6 and 8. We primarily went down there for language classes for the boys – Guatemala has the cheapest one-on-one language schools and also offers living with a family. They were too young for more than three hours a day, so I had to look around for ways to occupy them. We eventually hooked up with a local kids’ soccer coach and started going to some of their practices. I also met an American who had started a small program to sponsor local kids to attend school, since in Guatemala it costs money to attend school after sixth grade. Many families can’t afford it, which essentially sentences them to subsistence farming. We started sponsoring a student through this program, and I managed to talk some friends and family members into doing the same. I still do both today – sponsoring and recruiting sponsors. Every time I return, I visit my sponsored student as well as the students sponsored by my friends and family. I take pictures and videos to show them upon my return home and they love it. The next time we went, a year later, I brought down a huge duffel bag full of donated soccer equipment. After returning home, I found out about, through our dry cleaners, a company in Santa Ana that ships huge boxes via boat only to Guatemala, anywhere in Guatemala, for a reasonable price. So, I started shipping donations and also expanded to sending books, regular clothes and shoes, educational toys and games, etc. In 2017, I took the boys out of Harbor View when they were in third and fifth grade during Christmas break, and we spent the first half of the year in Guatemala; they attended local public school there. Spending so much time there, I got to know almost all of the coaches and teachers in the area, as well as many non-profits, both local and foreign, and I keep in touch with them year-round. We’ve been back a couple of times since then. Now that the boys are older, they’re starting to take some more initiative. When we were there last summer, we sponsored and participated in an open-water swim. We also brought some new equipment – a couple of backyard water polo goals, balls, caps, etc. and Calvin put on a water polo game in the lake after providing some basic training. Wade held a wrestling tournament, also after teaching them some moves. We also brought down with us a few sets of Spikeball, and the boys taught a big group of kids how to play. That was hilarious! It was such a blast for these poor kids who haven’t had in-person school in more than a year, and I think the boys felt good about having led and taught something. It was also nice for me.

Take Five Meet Parzick family

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The Parzick family (Back row L-R) Bob Parzick, Anne Parzick, Calvin Parzick and Wade Parzick (Front row L-R) Parzick’s sponsored student Jhennifer Johanna Chumil Quiacain, her little brother and her mother

Q: I’ve read that Guatemala has one of the strongest economies in Central America but a disproportionate poverty rate. Do you have any thoughts on what causes this situation or what the reality is in the places you’ve spent time?

A: I’m no expert on Central American politics, but corruption is always a safe bet as at least part of the answer. The indigenous Mayan highlands – which is where we go – have always gotten the shaft from the government. Guatemala has the fourth highest rate of chronic child malnutrition in the world, and it’s even higher if you restrict it to the Mayans. The poverty is staggering, especially farther into the outskirts of the towns we visit. Many of these families don’t even speak Spanish – several indigenous languages are spoken in the area – which prevents them from being able to do anything other than subsistence farming as a means of survival. They suffer from the effects of climate change – drought, brutal storms. To the Americans who are upset about Central Americans trying to come here for a better life: Should these people just simply watch as their families slowly starve to death? What would you do?

Take Five Meet Parzick with donations

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Parzick recently spent about six hours in Santa Ana, organizing and packing boxes of supplies to send to Guatemala. “It’s always exhausting but so exhilarating once I’m done,” she said. “While I pack, I make a list of everything I put in there, which I then translate and e-mail to my friend/contact/recipient in Guatemala so he can prep himself for what’s coming.” The boxes usually take six to seven weeks to arrive; once they showed up in a month, and another time it took 4.5 months.

Q: How do you go about collecting items and then delivering them?

A: My approach to collecting has been very haphazard, though I’m attempting to change that. For donations of sports gear and clothing, there are a handful of people here who regularly contact me to let me know that they have something for me, and sometimes I post on Facebook that I’m about to travel or send. For new equipment that my Guatemalan contacts have requested, I have an Amazon Wish List that I post on my Facebook page as I’m getting ready to send a box or travel. There are two angels here who simply donate money to me from time to time, which really helps with both sending the boxes and with getting a hold of items that I don’t get from Amazon. For delivering, I have several Guatemalan contacts – mostly coaches and teachers – to whom I send the boxes themselves or certain items in them. It’s a small community, so for the most part everyone knows each other, so it’s easy for me to label which items go to whom. This is better than my handing out items myself, because although I know a lot of people in the community, I don’t know who needs what the most – especially in the most needy outskirts. It’s very rewarding when we bring the donations with us when we travel there, because of course we get to see most of the distribution in person. To be honest, although I love being able to send and give needed items, I find the education sponsorship the most meaningful and rewarding. Education can be literally the difference between life or death for many of these families. There is one young man whose college tuition I sponsored last year whom I’m particularly proud of. Luis and his 10 siblings and parents owned several horses and would take tourists on horseback rides as a means of income, and he would often take my younger son, who was 8 or 9 years old at the time and had some challenges while we were there, out solo for hours. Well, during the pandemic, when tourism completely shut down, Luis’ family was forced to sell most of the horses and just grow vegetables to sell in the market. And they were just barely making it beforehand. I offered to pay for him to finish the college accounting courses that he had started but hadn’t been able to afford to finish and he took me up on it. Well, he has graduated and has been interviewing with accounting firms in the capital and I’m so proud of him. This education will change that family’s life.

Take Five Meet Parzick with kids books

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Along with sports gear, Parzick’s favorite donation to send or bring is books. She is pictured here with sons Calvin and Wade (left) after bringing a load of books to an after-school program in 2017

Q: How do you think your teenage sons have been impacted by the time your family has spent in Guatemala?

A: Sometimes I think not at all, lol. The most immediately noticeable impact is their language proficiency, but of course that’s the most superficial. Their exposure to a very different culture and a very different standard of living will stay with them – consciously or not – for the rest of their lives. When we lived there, there was no dishwasher, dryer, washing machine, or many other conveniences that we take for granted here. Water comes only three times a week – inconsistently at that – so they had to limit their showers, for instance. Attending a public school with very few resources was an eye-opener, too. Daily life there in general was an eye-opener. The town is small – and since most of the roads are cobblestone, there are hardly any cars – so I let the boys walk around by themselves at an early age. My younger son loved atole, a hot corn drink that the Mayans have been drinking for millennia, and he would often go by himself to the very crowded Sunday market to get his atole. My older son told me last year that he knows the town better than he knows Corona del Mar, because he walks everywhere there. Our trip last year had another impact on them: the boys teamed up with a local coach to hold a water polo event, a wrestling tournament and a Spikeball tournament. We had brought down the necessary equipment with us. I left the planning, coaching and production of the events completely to my boys and it was fun to see them take charge.

Take Five Meet Parzick basketball team

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Girls basketball team donation recipients

Q: I saw on your social media that you have worked in the past for FEMA and for the CDC. What work did you do with those agencies and what’s your next dream job?

A: I had assumed that after getting my master’s in Foreign Service from Georgetown, I’d go into the actual Foreign Service, but I was intrigued by the CDC and ended up there. I worked first in the Office of the Director and then in the International Emergency and Refugee Health Branch at the CDC’s Center for Environmental Health, which involved writing federal budget requests for various CDC programs and managing grants. I was lucky enough to spend a few months in Uganda with the CDC’s HIV/AIDS center there, also managing grants. After 9/11 and the subsequent bioterrorism attacks, I worked with a CDC E.R. doc to help our Pacific territories – Guam, American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, etc. – develop emergency response plans. After meeting my future husband and moving to San Francisco to be with him, I joined FEMA’s office there and continued helping these territories and Native American tribes develop their emergency response plans. That job was interesting until Hurricane Katrina. But by then I was pregnant with my older son and left FEMA soon after he was born, because I was no longer willing or able to travel for up to nine months to disaster-stricken western states or territories, all part of the FEMA contract. I’m not currently working, but I’ve toyed with the idea of going back – either rejoining the federal workforce or maybe going the NGO/non-profit route. Right now, I’m keeping busy with my family and the Guatemala work!

Take Five Meet Parzick duffel bag

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During Parzick’s trip in 2016, she and her son Calvin were invited to bring their huge duffel bag of donations to a school. The principal at the time (in the white shirt) now works with physically and cognitively disabled kids. Parzick has been working with him to send appropriate educational games and gear, since he gets literally zero resources from the government.

Take Five Meet Parzick jog a thon

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Youngsters don Harbor View Elementary School jog-a-thon T-shirts they received four or five years ago from Parzick

Editor’s Note: Currently, there is no formal organization or website for Anne Parzick’s Guatemala efforts, but anyone interested in donating items, funds, providing a small storage space, or sponsoring a student can message her on Facebook or Nextdoor.

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Amy Senk is a long-time resident of Corona del Mar and a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


School Notes

Transitional kindergarten programs expanding in the coming years

Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) is in the process of expanding the age range of students eligible for transitional kindergarten (TK) through the 2024-25 school year, when every 4 year old will be eligible to attend TK. 

For the 2022-2023 school year, NMUSD will be offering the following Early Learning options:

–A child with a birthdate between September 2, 2016 through September 1, 2017 will have the opportunity for kindergarten (only).

–Parents of a child with a birthdate between September 2, 2017 and February 2, 2018, may choose between transitional kindergarten or one NMUSD preschool program (state part day preschool, state full day preschool and tuition preschool).

–A child with a birthdate between February 3, 2018 and December 1, 2019, has the choice of transitional kindergarten or one NMUSD preschool program (state part day preschool, state full day preschool and tuition preschool).


Surfin’ at sunset

Surfin' at sunset.jpg SNN 2.4

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Photo by Stan Sievers (Instagram @stansievers)

Local surfer Tyler Gunter enjoying some air


It’s a whale of a good time

It's a whale of a good time SNN 2.4

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Photo by Emily Frangie (Instagram @thedroneangel)

A drone captures this beauty enjoying the majestic waters…check out the local charters and make a day of it


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Stapleton adds police and fire endorsements to candidate resume

Fair Game Toms new headshotLast issue we reported financial disclosures for a number of local candidates. No surprise to most was that District 1 City Council candidate Joe Stapleton led all in number of donors (more than 300) and amount raised ($150,000+). 

What we didn’t report at that time was the fact that Stapleton also received the endorsements of the Newport Beach Police Officers’ Association and the Newport Beach Firefighters’ Association.

Both are huge and carry a tremendous amount of weight.

In their announcement, Mark Fasano, President of the Newport Beach Police Association, said, “We know Joe Stapleton is going to do what’s best for Newport Beach because he has already put in the work. He went through our Police Citizen Academy. He’s going to support our cops, keep Newport Beach safe and represent the best of citizen leadership in our community.”

The same was echoed by Newport Beach Firefighters’ Association President Bobby Salerno, who said, “Our firefighters want to show up for people who’ve shown up for them. Joe Stapleton went through our Fire Ops 101 training. He’s invested the time to get to know us. We know we’re backing someone who has our back and that means a lot to us.”

Joe’s council race is the only one in town so far that has multiple candidates, as Tom Miller has also announced. And although Miller seems like a great guy and has the money to fund his own campaign if he so desires, he’s going to find Stapleton’s record as something almost unsurpassed from previous local candidates.

His involvement led him to be named the 2020 Newport Beach Citizen of the Year; he’s served on the Harbor Commission and the City’s Finance Committee, as well as another dozen or so other charitable organizations.

Joe’s so accomplished, it almost makes me wish that Miller had another spot to land in, because he, too, represents good things for the community. 

Miller pointed out to me this week that although the recent disclosure statement didn’t report it, that he’s “hired a very strong fundraising team in early December.”

He added, “During our initial meeting to discuss a game plan, I told them I DO NOT intend on holding fundraising events during the month of December while everyone is focused on spending their hard-earned money on Christmas. I actually had people ask me how they can donate and I suggested they hold off until I start holding events in the spring. I am certain to have hundreds of donors over the next several months.”

• • •

Speaking of City Council candidates, I also caught up this week with Erik Weigand. Erik announced his intentions to run for office shortly before the end of 2021 for termed-out Duffy Duffield’s District 3 seat come November. 

On the first go-around of financial disclosure statements, truth be told, Erik, too, was pretty quiet. However, he told me that it was by design, choosing instead to focus on endorsements, versus also bugging people for donations during the holiday season when their financial focus might be on other things, and rightfully so.

He added that now that the holidays are behind us, the kids are back in school and people are back to work, he says he’ll get busy in the next few months seeking ample financial support.

Two things to note, first, he has no other announced candidate as of yet, so it’s not like he’s playing catch-up to anyone; and second, there are still nine months until Election Day giving him more than ample time.

And let’s be honest, as Miller reminded me, “The campaign isn’t won in December or January.”

• • •

Elsewhere in Stu News today we review new issues pertaining to what I call, “good old fashion garbage.” It pertains to trash collection, recycling and more.

Besides preparing for the arrival of new recycling carts, with green lids, the story also notes that 14,000 residences will have the trash collection day changed. Go to www.newportbeachca.gov/findmycollectionday to see if and how you might be affected.

• • •

According to the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce news note, Lido Bottle Works has been named one of the Top 100 Places to Eat in America for 2022 by Yelp.

According to the Chamber, Lido Bottle Works is a gem of the Newport Harbor dining scene specializing in locally sourced cuisine, craft beer and California wines.

The restaurant, listed at No. 58, is located in Lido Marina Village. It was only one of four California restaurants that made the list.

• • •

How about a new idea for a pet for those little ones at home? Worms! Okay, maybe not. However, Sherman Library & Gardens is offering an upcoming Family Workshop titled Worm Composting. It’s planned for Saturday, Feb. 26 at 9:30 a.m.

Here’s what you’ll learn: how to compost with worms (imagine getting rid of those leftover strawberry tops, veggie trimmings, or paper and napkins). You’ll even leave the workshop with your own beginners kit to take home. Yes, and that means worms.

I just found out the class is currently sold out, however, there may be another class added, so if you are interested please add your name to the waitlist.

This class is just one of a number that Sherman Library & Gardens conducts each and every month. Others include painting classes, planting activities, tours, story time and more.

You can find out about these and others when you go to https://thesherman.org.

• • •

Perhaps you’ve noticed that the 2022 Winter Olympics are underway in Beijing.

The question posed to me the other day, “Does Newport Beach have anyone on the team?”

The answer is yes. Carlo Valdes has made the team in both the 2-man and 4-man bobsled. 

Carlo was born and raised in Newport Beach and then went on to UCLA where he played football, before moving over to track and field as a decathlete and then a javelin thrower.

He previously made the 2018 Olympic team in the 4-man bobsled, finishing 20th as a member of pilot Justin Olsen’s team.


More than your typical 5K event

Spirit Run is a unique road racing event because it hosts running and walking events for all ages and fitness levels. On the one hand, it presents races for serious runners to compete to win an array of prizes, including a cash prize purse in the Elite Mile. On the other, it holds non-competitive events for casual adult runners and families to jog or walk. In this “spirit,” Spirit Run offers several ways for children, adults and families to complete a 5k.

More than a typical adult 5K pack

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Photos courtesy of Spirit Run

Adult 5K pack at a previous Spirit Run

5K options for children

More than a typical Martinez

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Youth 5K winner 2019 Hector Martinez breaks tape

At other road racing events, children and adults race a single 5K race. To honor young competitors, Spirit Run hosts a separate 5K for them, the Youth 5K. This unique race allows children to compete without adult interference and for a child to break the finish line tape. Visit the Schedule and Maps and the Awards and Results pages at www.nmspiritrun.org to learn where and when the Youth 5K occurs and how and what prizes children can win.

Spirit Run understands parents might want to accompany their children when they race. Parents or guardians of youth in the Youth 5K may register for the Adult 5K and run with their children in the Youth 5K. However, they must start in the back of the pack and later catch up with their children and they are not eligible to win prizes. No other adults are allowed in the Youth 5K.

More than a typical adult 5K start

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Start of Adult 5K race

5K options for adults

Individual adults choose whether to run or walk a 5K at Spirit Run. They compete in the Adult 5K for prizes, or enjoy the 5K Family Walk. For further details on these 5K events, and when and where they take place, visit the Adult Events and Schedule and Maps pages at www.newportspiritrun.org.

5K options for families

More than a typical Rasmussen

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The Rasmussen family at a previous Spirit Run 5K Family Walk

Spirit Run hosts the 5K Family Walk for infants, grandparents and all ages in between to enjoy together. Fortunately, by participating together, families save on entry fees. Rather than paying the individual entry fee for each family member, a family who registers for the 5K Family Walk pays a single, discounted price. For example, the 5K Family Walk entry fee for a family of five is 40% less than if each member registered separately. For details about the 5K Family Walk and where and when it takes place, visit the Family Events and Schedule and Maps pages at www.newportspiritrun.org.

5K discount

Spirit Run is currently offering a discount on all 5K entries. Use promotional code ATYPICAL at checkout by Sunday, Feb. 6 to save 15%. Registration is available at www.newportspiritrun.org/registration.

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Spirit Run.


The pandemic might change the way planners handle meetings & conferences moving forward

By GARY SHERWIN

This certainly wasn’t the year that we imagined as 2022 began.

With COVID fatigue in full force, we were supposed to begin seeing meetings and conferences again in Newport Beach – a significant part of our tourism economy – after nearly two years of coma-like conditions. Bookings at area hotels were rebounding as of late last year. We were coming back, baby!

Well, Omicron had a different idea and that was to give us more of the same. Despite vaccination rates and safety protocols in place, many meeting planners chose to postpone their gatherings.

And that is actually good news.

Instead of cancelling outright, most planners pushed many of their meetings to later in the year. We’ve also seen that play out with high profile local events like the Mayor’s Dinner and the Christmas Boat Parade Dinner which are being rescheduled to the Spring.

Gary Sherwin

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Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

Unbelievably, that is the silver lining in this latest COVID outbreak. Planners, who have endured a start/stop event cycle for the last two years, aren’t for the most part panicking. In fact, most of them are seeing this latest variant as a temporary bump in the road that will be short-lived.

The first three months of the year are usually reserved for meetings and conferences in Newport Beach as the leisure visitor is still recovering from their holiday financial hangovers. While a few vacation seeking people show up during holiday weekends like Valentine’s or President’s Day, most of the money is made from these previously booked groups.

Planners are cautious people by nature. There is often a lot of money on the line and if word gets out that someone attended a conference and got sick, that setback could cost them in the future. So invariably they err on the side of caution.

A recent industry report said that nearly two-thirds of meeting planners have cancelled, postponed, or moved in-person events over the past six weeks. This mirrors the wave of cancellations and changes in late summer when the Delta variant was nearing its peak. 

This time, however, the slump should be temporary: Nearly 80% of the 668 respondents in a recent industry survey, fielded from January 15-25, intend to produce their next in-person meeting in the first half of 2022. We’ve seen that same trend locally with meeting clients.

And those who paused their live events in December and January won’t be waiting long to resume their plans. Forty-four percent of respondents will hold their next in-person meeting this quarter, and another 34% will meet this Spring or Summer. Only 4% will hold off until 2023 or later. 

Have you been on too many Zoom calls and are sick and tired of the whole thing? You are not alone. The other good news is that people are moving on from virtual meetings and planners are increasingly committed to doing live, in-person gatherings. Fewer than 20% of planners said most of their upcoming events will be digital-only, another indication that planners remain committed to returning to in-person events.

All of this is really important because Newport Beach cannot truly recover its tourism business without robust meetings and conventions. It is a massive cash flow stream for our largest hotels accounting for as much as 60% of their annual revenue or more. With new hotel products coming online soon with VEA (the Marriott Newport Beach) and the new alliteration of Fashion Island Hotel to be announced shortly, meetings will be critical to their economic success as well as our city’s other properties.

As meetings return, there will be some challenges, however. More than half of the planners said they will now require masks indoors, a significant increase since the end of last year. That won’t be popular for many people and compliance will certainly be an issue.

Nearly 20% of all meetings will require both proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test prior to in-person events. As in the political arena, the range of COVID protocols reveals a huge difference of opinion: 56% of respondents in an industry survey will adhere to state and local mandates and nothing further. 

Another precautionary measure that doesn’t bode well for Newport Beach is that 40% of planners said they will or might avoid holding live events in the winter (December through March), specifically due to health and safety concerns. Since our city needs group business during that time, that trend could be problematic. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen.

2022 has been forecast by the U.S. Travel Association as the year of recovery and I still buy that prediction. As Omicron wanes and people get adjusted to living with COVID, people are eager to get out and see people in the flesh. Meetings are a vital part of that.

Gatherings are also critical because we are humans. Zoom helped get us through the pandemic but we are social creatures who crave connection. There’s nothing like seeing an old industry friend in person at a conference after only viewing them on a screen for the last two years.

It’s time to get together again. We need it as people as well as our city’s economy.

Gary Sherwin is President & CEO of Visit Newport Beach and Newport Beach & Company.


You Must Remember This: How Collins Radio moved its western division to Newport Beach

By NANCY GARDNER

I got a query from Dennis Baker after the column on Joe Collins appeared:  Was Joe involved with Collins Radio? I told him no, but it reminded me of my own connection with the company – and my role in transforming our city.

As a little background, the company was formed in 1933 and became a leader in avionics and radio communications. Having graduated from college with an English major, you can be sure that I had nothing to do with the basics of the company’s business. However…

It was summer. There was the usual guerilla warfare between me and my parents about me seeking summer employment, they for, me against. We were in a temporary truce when my mother noticed an ad in the local paper. A film was being made here, and they wanted to cast a local. Since I “wasn’t doing anything,” she said, ignoring the fact that I was improving my surfing skills, why didn’t I apply. This seemed an easy way to placate her, so I sent in a brief bio and a headshot my mother took and didn’t think anything more about it until a few weeks later I got a letter announcing I had been selected. Suddenly, surfing faded into the background. I was going to star in a movie. It would come out and – I tried not to get too far ahead of myself. Okay, I did practice my Oscar acceptance speech, but otherwise I kept it under control. The first thing was to meet with the director. Would he wear a beret? Jodhpur pants? Carry a swagger stick? No. Bill Deming looked like one of my parents’ friends in his khakis and a polo shirt. Still – he was a director. He sat me down and explained the scenario.  A company called Collins Radio was planning to establish its western division in Newport Beach. However, the executives were concerned that none of their employees would want to leave the east coast and come here. This may seem unbelievable, but remember, there was a time when Newport was not NEWPORT, when it was a beach town with not a lot of commerce, not a lot of culture, not a lot of things to attract people from places that had a lot of those things except…the weather. To someone who had grown up here, I never thought much about the weather, but this was to be the focus of the film. My role – well, Norma Desmond would have been delighted. This was not a talkie. I had no lines. My job was to provide a human element as we highlighted the weather.   Oh, and did I know of another kid, preferably a boy, to augment things. I immediately thought of Rex Mechling, full of freckles and personality. Rex agreed, and then Deming recruited our two mothers to round out the cast and off we went for a week of standing and pointing and smiling at various sun-saturated vistas. After that, Deming went off and cut the film, it was delivered, shown – and to my amazement MGM never called.

Despite that, I have always thought I must have been exceptionally good at my standing, pointing, smiling because how else do you explain Collins’ success in luring its employees out here? And I don’t want to hear about the weather.

Anyway, the company arrived, and although we didn’t realize it at the time, it was a harbinger of the immense changes coming. What I had thought of as if not a step to stardom at least an excuse not to get a real summer job was actually the beginning of the end – or the end of the beginning, I suppose, depending on your perspective. A whole bunch of companies took note of the Collins move and decided to move here themselves, bringing their employees, attracting new employees and the result? New development everywhere you looked. Cars, cars, cars clogging our streets – and all because of the film I made for Collins Radio.   Mea culpa. 

~~~~~~~~

Nancy Gardner, former Mayor of Newport Beach, longtime resident and daughter of Judge Robert Gardner, is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


COVID-19: 231 new cases and three new deaths reported in Newport Beach this past week

Stu News Newport is reporting COVID-19 numbers on a weekly basis, as reported by the OC Health Care Agency.

This week, January 26-February 1, there have been 231 new cases in Newport Beach and three new deaths, while at the same time having a number of previously reported numbers adjusted, bringing the overall totals to 8,542 cases reported to date and 114 deaths. 

During the past week, the county reported a total of 19,720 new cases, raising the total to 518,638 to date. The death totals for the county were 132 for the week, bringing the overall total number of deaths to 6,110.

As of Tuesday, Feb. 1, Orange County has performed a cumulative of 7,143,647 tests to date. There are 872 current cases of hospitalized patients in Orange County, of which 164 are in ICU.

For questions about the data presented by the county, call 714.834.2000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To view the county’s data dashboard, click here.

COVID-19 numbers are updated weekly by Stu News Newport in Friday’s edition. 

SNN COVID 19 2 4 22 1

SNN COVID 19 2 4 22 2

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Data courtesy of OC Health Care Agency


Fire Files

Three-alarm fire hits Park Newport apartments on windy Wednesday evening

Fire Files apartment fire

Photo by Jaril Tudio

At 8:29 p.m. on a blustery Wednesday evening (Feb. 2), the Newport Beach Fire Department was dispatched to a reported structure fire at the Park Newport Apartment complex at Jamboree and San Joaquin Hills roads. NBFD initially responded with six engines.

While en route, the call was upgraded to a second alarm fire requesting additional Newport engines, along with support from Huntington Beach, Costa Mesa and Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA).

Upon arrival, it was observed that the fire involved multiple units on multiple floors and it was possibly burning through the roof. A third alarm was requested adding additional apparatus from OCFA and Costa Mesa.

Initial crews were able to contain the fire and stop progress with exterior hose lines. Other crews were able to get hose lines in place from the interior on the third and fourth floors to attack and extinguish the fire from the inside. 

The fire was knocked down in about 15 minutes from time of dispatch and fully extinguished in about 30 minutes. Crews remained on scene for an additional two hours completing overhaul.

A total of 21 units ended up responding, including 61 personnel from Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Costa Mesa and OCFA. 

Newport Beach Police Department Officers and Supervisors were also on scene assisting with traffic and crowd control.

It was determined that the fire originated from a second-floor apartment and extended up to two units on the third floor and two units on the fourth floor. A total of six units were damaged by the fire.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation and there were no injuries reported of occupants or responders.

The fire was located in the 1200 Building of Park Newport.


Garrett Collins named VP of marketing and communications for Pacific Symphony

Pacific Symphony President and Chief Executive Officer John Forsyte announced the appointment of Garrett Collins to the position of vice president of marketing and communications. Collins joins Pacific Symphony from Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit theatre companies, where he was marketing strategy director. 

“We’re very excited to welcome Garrett to Pacific Symphony,” commented John Forsyte. “His passion for orchestral music, extensive experience in planning and execution in the areas of advertising, sales, communications, audience stewardship and visitor experience ideally qualify him to lead the Symphony’s integrated marketing and communications team. He will lead efforts to engage current supporters and develop new audiences for the orchestra during this time of recovery and renewal.”

Garrett Collins named vp collins

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Photo by Allison Maginn Photography

Courtesy of Pacific Symphony

Garrett Collins

Collins assumed his new position on January 31. His responsibilities include the leadership and management of all marketing, communications and sales operations for the organization, reporting to Forsyte. 

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to the ongoing success of Pacific Symphony, a dynamic and ambitious organization,” said Collins. “I’m especially excited to support and guide strategies that make the orchestra accessible to as many people as possible through marketing and communications campaigns that energize an appreciation of orchestral music and are relevant to communities throughout Orange County and Southern California. Collaborating with the musicians, staff, board and, of course, Music Director Carl St.Clair will be a great honor.” 

Collins has been with Center Theatre Group, where he was responsible for leading marketing initiatives, since 2014. He has a proven track record for shaping organizational and marketing strategies to achieve $45M+ in annual ticket sales. He has also been recognized for his work in patron retention strategies, digital innovation and initiatives that deepen diversity, equity, inclusion and access.

Prior to his tenure with Center Theatre Group, Collins held marketing and community engagement positions at LA Opera and UCLA and was a 2013 fellow in OPERA America’s Leadership Intensive program. A native of Gilroy, Calif., Collins holds a Master of Arts in Arts Management from Claremont Graduate University and a Bachelor of Arts in Music (flute performance) from University of California, Los Angeles (magna cum laude).


Pet of the Week Dog and Cat print

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.

Let’s talk golden teddy bears…That’s incredible Angus. What a total love bug. At 2 years in age, one pretty much knows what they are adopting in a dog. Angus is sweet, funny, loves to play, love, relax and hang out. He’s smart, listens, goes along with the program and absolutely shines! He could be your pillow while you’re watching movies and he really pays no mind to other dogs around him. He is an easy-going guy. He’s a shedder, but that absolutely shouldn’t make anyone think twice, because bathing and grooming will definitely be on the to-do list to care for his wonderful fur coat. Angus would also like a yard. He seems to be potty trained to go outside, but that’s also something that any new adopter needs to work on at the beginning stages of adopting and loving a new pup. 

Pet of the Week Angus 1.21 JPG

Courtesy of Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Angus

Staff is available to talk during “normal” business hours, so Angus hopes to see you soon.

The shelter does require completed application forms for their animals, so simply print one up from their non-profit’s webpage at www.FONBAS.org. After it is completed, you can email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and upon review, they’ll call you to schedule an appointment. They truly look forward to speaking with you and thank you for sharing in their joys of being the best pet parents ever.

Newport Beach Animal Shelter adoption fees:

–Adult Dogs - $150

–Puppies - $225

–Adult Cats - $90

–Kittens - $110

–Rabbits - $45

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.


CdM Home Tour announces Cover Art Contest winner

The CdM Home Tour team is delighted to announce Isabella Juarez-Padilla as the winner of the Cover Art Contest for the CdM Home Tour Resource Guide. Students were invited to submit their designs and the Home Tour committee was pleased to receive such amazing creations from CdM Middle and High School students. 

Cover Art Winner Isabella

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Photos courtesy of CdM Home Tour

Isabella Juarez-Padilla, a 13-year-old seventh grader at CdM Middle School

Isabella Juarez-Padilla, also known as Bella, is a 13-year-old seventh grader at CdM Middle School. It took her a day to sketch and paint the winning artwork. She worked on it meticulously, taking time to detail and add light and shadows, resulting in a beautiful, elegant and exquisite design. Juarez-Padilla was inspired by the colorful style of the Tuscan doors in Italy. She chose bright colors and started by sketching the door, using real doors and architectural plans as her references. While working, she listened to her favorite classical music. She loves to create drawings, sculptures and paintings with different mediums.

Juarez-Padilla has special needs and attends the special education program at CdM. Art is a form of therapy for her, as she has autism, anxiety and struggles to socialize. Her mom encouraged her to give the contest a try, hoping that she would start painting again to help her improve her mental health. Luckily, she loved the challenge and has said she feels happy again when painting! 

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Photos courtesy of CdM Home Tour

The winning cover art for this year’s CdM Home Tour brochure, by student artist Isabella Juarez-Padilla

Juarez-Padilla is an inspiration to us all, as she also learned to play the piano by herself during the 2020 quarantine, is currently learning how to play an electric guitar and also likes to sing opera. Two of her artworks are part of the collection at the UNESCO in Troyes, France. 

Congratulations to all the entrants for their wonderful and inspiring creations and a particular thanks to Juarez-Padilla for her inspirational story and remarkable achievements.

Tickets are now on sale for the 48th Annual Corona del Mar Home Tour at www.cdmhometour.com, so be sure to take advantage of the Early Bird price of $93 until January 31. Follow CdM Home Tour on social media to keep up to date with all the news – Instagram: @cdmhometour2022 and Facebook: Corona del Mar Home Tour.

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

Stu News Newport is once again a Media Sponsor of the Corona del Mar Home Tour.


Good Morning CdM to talk “trash” at February meeting 

The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce will present their “Good Morning CdM!” monthly meeting on Thursday, Feb. 10 from 7:30-9 a.m. at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club. 

Good Morning CdM Carey

Courtesy of CdM Chamber of Commerce

Mike Carey, senior sustainability coordinator, CR&R

The free meeting, with complimentary coffee and pastries, will feature Mike Carey, senior sustainability coordinator, CR&R. The topic, “Let’s Talk Trash,” will present how Newport Beach under state law will be implementing a mandatory residential and business recycling program for all households and businesses beginning February 1. Learn from Carey what requirements will be heading our way.

The gathering will also provide updates from local legislative office representatives, including Newport Beach City Councilmember Joy Brenner, District 6; Congresswoman Michelle Steel, 48th District; Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris, District 74 and O.C Supervisor Katrina Foley, District 2.

The meeting is open to the community at large and no RSVP is necessary. 

The Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club is located at 1601 Bayside Drive, Corona del Mar. 

For more information, visit www.CdmChamber.com.


Make a difference – participate in this Spring’s NBFD’s CERT program

The Newport Beach Fire Department (NBFD) invites residents to join the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program to learn how to help their neighborhoods following unexpected disasters. The CERT program is available free to Newport Beach residents and $40 for non-residents.

This Spring, the NBFD will hold one CERT program series starting on Friday evening, March 25 (6-10 p.m.) and continuing all day Saturday, March 26 (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.) and Sunday, March 27 (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.).

Participants must pre-register to attend the program. The class will be held at Newport Beach Fire Station #7 located at 20401 SW Acacia in the Santa Ana Heights area. To register, complete a CERT program application at www.nbcert.org or call 949.644.3112.


Pop opera superstar Katherine Jenkins performs with Pacific Symphony for Valentine’s Day weekend

Welsh superstar Katherine Jenkins received her OBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) from Prince Charles at The Queen’s residence Buckingham Palace in 2014 and in June of this year, she sings at The Queen’s much-loved country retreat Sandringham Estate to mark the monarch’s historic Platinum Jubilee.

But first, the celebrated mezzo sings for Orange County audiences in an exclusive engagement with Pacific Symphony for Valentine’s Day weekend, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 11-12 at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in the Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

Cherished as one of Britain’s all-time favorite singers, in 2017 Jenkins was officially crowned “the biggest selling artist of the century” by Classic FM and made chart history when her last album Cinema Paradiso became her 14th UK Classical No.1 album, further cementing her position as the world’s most prolific artist in UK Classical chart history.

Pop opera superstar Jenkins

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Courtesy of Pacific Symphony

Katherine Jenkins

As one of the UK’s greatest musical exports, the multi-award-winning Jenkins has performed all over the world, for the Pope, for presidents and is a favorite of the Royal Family, having been invited to sing “God Save The Queen” at Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee, perform at Her Majesty’s Coronation concerts at Buckingham Palace and by special request at Her Majesty’s 90th birthday celebrations at Windsor Castle. She has embarked upon numerous sold-out tours and duetted with such names as Andrea Bocelli, José Carreras, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Bryn Terfel, Rolando Villazón and Il Divo, among others. She has wowed audiences and critics alike with her stellar performance as Julie Jordan in Lonny Price’s semi-staged production of Carousel at the London Coliseum in 2017 and has been featured on Dancing with the Stars. Pacific Symphony Pops favorite, David Foster commented: “The incredibly beautiful, incredibly talented and gorgeous Katharine Jenkins has a voice like an angel.”

For her Pacific Symphony debut, Jenkins has curated a program that includes favorite selections from her new studio album, Cinema Paradiso, which she describes as “all the best film musical themes that we know and love, all together on one recording.”

This Valentine’s Day weekend, treat your significant other, family members, friends and yourself to an evening with Britain’s most exciting crossover pop star. Pacific Symphony will be led by guest conductor Albert-George Schram (Resident Conductor of the Nashville Symphony). Tickets start at $35. To learn more about the show and buy tickets, click here, or call 714.755.5799.

Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in the Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. www.pacificsymphony.org.


Planning underway for summer’s 55th GovCup International Youth Match Racing Championships at BYC

The Balboa Yacht Club’s 55th Governor’s Cup International Youth Match Racing Championships is set to sail on July 25-30. Earlier this week the BYC began accepting Requests for Invitation (RIF), which is the first step towards filling the elite field.

Complicating matters this year is that the World Youth Match Racing Championships will be held in Pornichet, France the week prior from July 17-23. The good news is that the U.S. Youth Match Racing World Championship and Yacht Club Apcc Voile Sportive (FRA) worked together to ensure that the two championships did not conflict, allowing teams invited to both events the ability to compete.

Planning underway GovCup sailing

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Courtesy of GovCup

55th Governor’s Cup International Youth Match Racing Championships is set to sail on July 25-30

The GovCup is presented by Disc Sports & Spine Center and is an invitational event for sailors that have not reached their 23rd birthday by the last day of the regatta. 

It is the world’s oldest international youth match racing regatta and “alumni” have competed in, and won the America’s Cup, the Congressional Cup, Olympic medals, the World Match Racing Tour Championship and – perhaps most surprisingly given the difference in the sport’s disciplines – the Round the World Race.

“While COVID is still unfortunately with us, we hope that significant improvement in the situation will occur before the July dates and that this year we will be again be joined by teams from New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom which was not possible in 2021,” said Christine Gribben, chair of the event. “They will face tough competition from 2021 GovCup winner Jeffrey Petersen (USA) and World Youth Match Racing Champion David Wood (USA) –both of whom are committed to attend – as well as European teams expected to seek invitations from Denmark, France and Italy.”

“To a certain extent, this year will be a ‘changing of the guard’ as a number of young match racing champions like former GovCup winner Nick Egnot-Johnson (NZL) and 2019 Youth World Champion Tom Grimes (AUS) have ‘aged out’ of the Cup this year,” said Selection Committee member Andy Rose. “But, with the rankings of Petersen and Wood and the other potential age-eligible invitees, we still could end up with a Grade 2 quality fleet, or even Grade 1 as we were in 2018.”

The grading of events by World Sailing is based primarily on the “Open” (non-age-limited) rankings of the skippers. In 2018, the Governor’s Cup was retroactively regraded to Grade 1, the first youth match racing regatta to ever achieve that level, normally reserved for events with most, or all, professional sailors. 

The 2022 Governor’s Cup has initially applied as a Grade 3 regatta so if an upgrade is appropriate after the RIF and selection process, it would be retroactive as was the case in 2018.

The Cup is sailed in identical “Governor’s Cup 22” sloops provided by the Newport Balboa Sailing & Seamanship Association and BYC to the competitors. They were designed by famed yacht designer and BYC Staff Commodore Alan Andrews and feature fractional rigs, flat top mains and masthead spinnakers. They have proved perfectly suited to racing in wind speeds of as little as four to five knots, but also perform well and are exciting to sail in the 18-20 knot conditions prevalent in the 2021 Cup.


WICKED to return to Segerstrom Center for the Arts

WICKED, Costa Mesa’s most popular musical, will return to Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts on February 9 through March 6. This will be the first area engagement of WICKED in three years.

The Broadway sensation WICKED looks at what happened in the Land of Oz…but from a different angle. Long before Dorothy arrives, there is another young woman, born with emerald-green skin, who is smart, fiery, misunderstood and possessing an extraordinary talent. When she meets a bubbly blonde who is exceptionally popular, their initial rivalry turns into the unlikeliest of friendships…until the world decides to call one “good,” and the other one “wicked.” 

WICKED to return Allison Bailey

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Photo by Joan Marcus

Courtesy of scfta.org

(L-R) Allison Bailey and Talia Suskauer in the North American Tour of WICKED

With a thrilling score that includes the hits “Defying Gravity,” “Popular” and “For Good,” WICKED has been hailed by The New York Times as “the defining musical of the decade,” and by Time Magazine as “a magical Broadway musical with brains, heart and courage.” NBC Nightly News calls the hit musical “the most successful Broadway show ever.”

Now the fifth longest-running show in Broadway history, WICKED is the winner of more than 100 international awards including the Grammy Award and three Tony Awards. Since opening in 2003, WICKED has been performed in more than 100 cities in 16 countries around the world (U.S., Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Japan, Germany, Holland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, The Philippines, Mexico, Brazil, Switzerland and China) and has thus far been translated into six languages: Japanese, German, Dutch, Spanish, Korean and Portuguese. WICKED has been seen by more than 60 million people worldwide and has amassed more than $5 billion in global sales. 

Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, WICKED has music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, and a book by Winnie Holzman. The production is directed by Tony Award winner Joe Mantello with musical staging by Tony Award winner Wayne Cilento. WICKED is produced by Marc Platt, Universal Stage Productions, The Araca Group, Jon B. Platt and David Stone.

WICKED Performances – February 9 through March 6:

–Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday Evenings 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.

–Special Thursday matinee on February 10 at 2 p.m.

Single tickets for WICKED start at $44.75 and are available at www.SCFTA.org, or at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive, 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.

For more information about WICKED, visit www.WickedTheMusical.com.

Segerstrom Hall at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts’ updated COVID-19 policy requires ticket holders to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 to attend all indoor performances and events. “Fully vaccinated” means your performance is at least 14 days after your final vaccine dose. To enter the theater, please bring a photo ID (for guests over 18 years old) and proof of vaccination, either your physical vaccination card, a picture of your vaccination card, or a digital vaccination record. Most California residents may request a digital vaccination record at myvaccinerecord.cdph.ca.gov.

Any ticket holders (including those under age 12) without proof of being fully vaccinated can present a negative COVID-19 test (PCR taken within 48 hours or antigen taken within six hours) of the performance. Along with their ticket, attendees will need to bring either documentation of a negative COVID-19 test result, emailed result, or picture of results showing a negative diagnosis as well as the date and their name. At-home tests will not be accepted.

Masks are required at all times for all patrons and visitors regardless of vaccination status in all indoor spaces at Segerstrom Center. Performance ticket holders who do not comply with these policies will not be admitted.


Adults and families get off your couch and train for Spirit Run’s 5K

If you have never run a 5K or need a tune up, Spirit Run’s Couch to 5K program is perfect for you. Spirit Run’s coaches will slowly build your endurance to move you off the couch to running a 5K.

Training will take place Mondays and Wednesdays from 6-7 p.m. at Newport Harbor High beginning January 31 and culminating in participating in Spirit Run on March 27th.

Adults and families Coach Ashton

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Photos courtesy of Spirit Run

Coach Ashton competing for UCI’s Cross Country and Track Team

Spirit Run’s Couch to 5K coaches are excited to meet you. This is Coach Ashton’s third year with the program. He competed for UCI’s Cross Country and Track Team where he made the Big West All-Academic Team three consecutive years. Coach Ashton wants to let you know, “Being able to come back and rejoin the program is exhilarating and amazing. I am so happy to help those that join us and get others to fall in love with such a great sport!”

Adult and families Coach Thomas

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Coach Thomas breaking tape at the Surf City Marathon

Newport Beach native Coach Thomas is proud to join the program. He placed first in the Surf City Marathon in 2020 and is a USA Olympic Trials Qualifier in the Half Marathon. He competed for Princeton and Corona del Mar High School. He’s delighted to support Spirit Run and you, explaining, “I am excited to coach because it will be gratifying to introduce others to the sport and watch them achieve their goals.”

Couch to 5K registration is open to adults and families. The modest registration fee covers your entry into Spirit Run’s 5K. As an extra incentive for Stu News readers, for today only, Spirit Run is offering a 20% discount with code “STUNEWS.” Registration is available at www.newportspiritrun.org.


Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach has a full menu for 2022

By Peter Weitzner

Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach is coming off a highly successful 2021, when it brought back its live events, and added one new annual celebration – the “Fun Zone Festival,” which drew 300 guests to an amusement park-themed evening at the Pyle family’s newly owned venue on Balboa Peninsula.

“Great way to end the year…great turnout…terrific venue,” said Museum President Emeritus, Shirley Pepys. But now, on to the new year.

The Museum celebrates its fourth year in 2022 at its prominent Marine Avenue location.

Pepys & Co. are preparing a full menu of onsite and offsite events as well as new exhibits at 210B Marine Ave. and satellite locations including the Newport Beach Public Library and John Wayne Airport.

Here’s what’s on tap for the beginning of the year.

Balboa Island Museum Lam family

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Photos courtesy of Balboa Island Museum of Newport Beach

(L-R) Wing Lam with his parents Lee Cheong Kwong (Cheong Lee) and Lee So Ching, who opened Shanghai Pine Gardens on Balboa Island in 1969. 

–February rings in the Year of the Tiger with a Lunar New Year Exhibit and members event honoring restaurateurs Wing Lam (Wahoo’s Fish Taco) and Cheong Lee and family (Shanghai Pine Gardens). The exhibition, on display throughout the month, will showcase the history of the Lam family, who immigrated to Balboa Island from Mainland China.

–The first Sunday Supper of 2022 is February 20 at 5 p.m. Cost is $30 which includes dinner and wine (courtesy of Ciao) with desserts by Christine. There will also be a raffle. Tickets are available online and at the Museum Store. Go here to register.

Balboa Island Museum veterans

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Balboa Island Veteran Bill Stewart (back row, left) and fellow WW II vets at an OC Fair & Event Center’s Heroes Hall recent event

Vietnam Veterans Day is Tuesday, March 29. The Museum’s “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans” invites all veterans, family and friends for coffee and donuts at 9 a.m. It is providing Vietnam Veteran lapel pinning celebrating the day. The museum, led by WW II Vet Bill Stewart, continues its project to recognize every Balboa Island Vet. The registry of close to 200 Veterans can be found at https://www.balboaislandmuseum.org/veterans/.

–A new AirCal Exhibit is coming in March. The airline had a storied 20-year run from 1967-1987, ultimately sold by General William Lyon and businessman George Argyros to American Airlines. AirCal introduced the first regular, nonstop flights to San Francisco International from John Wayne Airport.

–Spring will bring an update to the Kids Exhibit.

Visit the store at the Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach or shop online at https://balboaislandmuseum-shop.square.site/.

Balboa Island Museum Umbrellas

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“Celebrating Our Local Artists” – Umbrella Art Installation at Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach. The gallery changes out about every quarter.

Balboa Island Museum is open daily and located at 210B Marine Ave., Balboa Island. For more information, visit https://balboaislandmuseum.org

Peter Weitzner is the co-producer of “The Golden Age of Newport Harbor.”


Year-over-year passenger counts show dramatic increase, but still shy of pre-pandemic numbers

Airline passenger traffic at John Wayne Airport (JWA) increased in December 2021 as compared to December 2020 dramatically. In December 2021, the JWA served 847,671 passengers, an increase of 266.9% when compared with the December 2020 passenger traffic count of 231,033. 

The 2021 numbers were still a decrease of 4.9% when compared to December 2019 of 891,492 passengers.

Commercial aircraft operations increased 86.9% and commuter aircraft operations increased 9.5% when compared with December 2020 levels.

Comparing December 2021 to 2019 levels, commercial aircraft operations of 7,170 decreased 5.0% and commuter aircraft operations of 508 increased 23.6%.

Total aircraft operations increased in December 2021 as compared with the same month in 2020. In December 2021, there were 22,410 total aircraft operations (take-offs and landings), a 24.1% increase compared to 18,061 total aircraft operations in December 2020 and increased 8.2% compared to December 2019 of 20,718 total aircraft operations.

General aviation activity, which accounted for 65.6% of the total aircraft operations during December 2021, increased 7.0% when compared with December 2020, and increased 15.6% when compared to general aviation activity of 12,731 in December 2019, which accounted for 61.4% of total aircraft operations.

The top three airlines in December 2021 based on passenger count were Southwest Airlines (315,770), American Airlines (142,915) and United Airlines (120,831).


Coastline College President to speak at WAKE UP! Newport Thursday Zoom meeting

The community is invited to come hear an overview of Coastline College’s Newport campus and On-Demand Education at Coastline at the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce’s WAKE UP! Newport February 3 Zoom program.

Vince Rodriguez, President of Coastline College, will be the featured speaker Thursday from 8-9 a.m. on the Chamber’s free program.

Coastline College President Rodriguez

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Courtesy of Coastline College

Dr. Vince Rodriguez, President of Coastline College

Dr. Rodriguez was born and raised in Orange. He graduated from Orange Coast College with an Associate degree and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Technology and a Master of Arts in Education at the University of Phoenix in Tempe, AZ, with an emphasis in Distance Learning and Adult Education. In 2011 he earned his doctorate in Educational Leadership from California State University, Long Beach. Dr.

Rodriguez has been a member of the Coast Community College District since 1998 and has worked as a classified employee, instructor, and administrator. Over his 20-plus years at Coastline, he has provided leadership at each of Coastline’s learning centers and spent many years overseeing a Distance Learning Program that accounted for nearly 75% of the enrollments at the college. 

In June 2021, he became the new President.

To participate, reservations are required through the Chamber here.


Happy February – the month I thought would never get here

By AMY SENK

Raise your hand if you, like me, are glad to see January in the rearview mirror. What a long month, full of falls and canceled plans and disappointments on all fronts. 

Today, we can start fresh with hope for a better month, including in Corona del Mar, where rumor has it that Chipotle will be opening soon at 3050 E. Coast Highway.

Happy February Chipotle

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Courtesy of Ron Yeo

Chipotle is expected to open this week

We first heard about Chipotle replacing the Baja Fresh more than a year ago, when company officials thought they would be open by autumn. Recently, they said a February opening. Then over the past week, workers painted a mural on the side of the building and late in the day on Saturday, there were people inside – were they workers training? One friend told me he spoke to the manager, and that staff training had indeed begun and that a Thursday opening is possible.

Happy February Chipotle mural

Photo by Amy Senk

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The mural being painted on the side of the Chipotle building

The location apparently has had a restaurant for decades. Before Baja Fresh, and before my time in CdM, there was a Boston Market restaurant. City Councilmember Joy Brenner, who grew up in CdM, said there was a Denny’s there in the 1960s, followed by a place called Puffins, according to CdM resident and artist Ron Yeo. In any case, soon we’ll be able to grab Chipotle, and I know tons of people who will be very glad about that.

Happy February roadwork

Photo by Amy Senk

Click on photo for a larger image

Roadwork improvements through CdM should take approximately eight weeks

Crews also have begun the sidewalk and roadway improvements through town, an eight-week or so project that will start in the west/north part of town and will move east and south. No parking zones and lane closures have already begun, and full road closures with detours will happen at some point, affecting East Coast Highway between MacArthur Boulevard and Newport Coast Drive and Marguerite Avenue from Bayside Drive up to Fifth Avenue.

When I first heard about this project, I felt super put-upon. There wasn’t even a precise schedule of which work would be done which days. Sheesh!

Then a few things happened. A Flower Street neighbor reached out to Councilmember Brenner with concerns about traffic safety if motorists begin to speed down alternate routes, like our street, Seaview Avenue. She reached out to city staff, and we planned a meeting to discuss our concerns and share ideas.

Then, I noticed traffic backed up heading into CdM from West Newport, where the lane closed near Goldenrod Avenue. I decided not to take a side street and just see how long I sat there while two lanes merged to one.

Two minutes.

Finally, I watched the City Council’s annual planning session meeting on Saturday, when the councilmembers heard reports about expensive future projects that they should begin thinking about. One was the need for road improvements before we see potholes and other problems, and how scheduling this work before its needed, rather than constantly making emergency repairs, is cost effective. I realized CdM is lucky to be getting their work done now. It’s not fun, but so far not horrible, and it will no doubt be totally worth it. 

That meeting also included discussion of the need to find a location for a new police headquarters building and plans for a new fire station on the Peninsula, an update on how we are dealing with our homeless issues and information on the city’s economic health. 

Meanwhile, speaking of road closures – the city’s website states that beginning Sunday (Feb. 6), construction work will close northbound Jamboree Road from Bayside Drive to East Coast Highway for about eight weeks. The northbound lanes will be closed from 8:30 p.m.-6 a.m. Sunday through Thursday; southbound lanes will remain open. The work will replace a large, nearly 100-year-old water main that serves the entire city.

And finally, a recent column took a look at how massive improvements at Fashion Island’s RH (formerly Restoration Hardware) store will affect other businesses. I wrote about how the project will convert the old Forever 21 space into a four-story, 80,0000-square-foot shop that will include in-house designers and a rooftop wine bar and restaurant when in opens, scheduled for May 2024. 

As part of this, California Pizza Kitchen decided to close instead of move within the center. Victoria’s Secret will move, and its sister retailer, Pink, will close, and the Apple Store with lose some non-public space but will remain in the same spot. 

A reader reached out to me to find out about specific other businesses, and here’s what I learned: No news on Le Pain Quotidien at the moment. PF Chang’s, Soul Cycle and Pressed will remain as is.

Happy February VALIA

Photo by Amy Senk

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Decorating for Valentine’s Day begins in town with VALIA Properties putting up a large red heart

Have a wonderful week everyone – and be kind. We can make February a truly great month.

~~~~~~~~

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.


Regattas and Races…

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

NHYC

Lehman 12 Winter Series 3

January 30

Lehman 12 (7 sailed, 1 discard)

1 Jake Reynolds, SDYC, Total 22, Net 16

2 J. La Dow/Dahl, NHYC, Total 24, Net 17

3 Segerblom/Megarry, NHYC, Total 31, Net 22

4 Curtiss/Moore, NHYC, Total 33, Net 22

5 Macdonald/Dapp, NHYC, Total 35, Net 24

6 Michael Ramming, NHYC, Total 45, Net 32

7 Peter Stemler, NHYC, Total 57, Net 37

8 Killian/Newman, NHYC, Total 53, Net 43

9 Smith/Davidson, NHYC/BYC, Total 56, Net 44

10 Michael Dahl, NHYC, Total 57, Net 47

11 Hause/Olmstead, NHYC, Total 75, Net 55

12 Chuck Beek, NHYC, Total 82, Net 70

13 A. Clemens/R. Clemens, NHYC, Total 128, Net 108

14 W. La Dow/Hampton, SDYC/NHYC, Total 130, Net 110

15 Clark/Aschieris, NHYC, Total 131, Net 111

16 n/a, n/a, Total 134, Net 114

17 C. Beek/H. Beek, Total 140, Net 120

18 Don Ayres 3, NHYC, Total 140, Net 120

19 Person/Hampton, NHYC, Total 140, Net 120

News relating to racing in or around Newport Harbor should be forwarded to Tom Johnson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


World Cancer Day: The importance of expanding access to cancer research and treatment

By Tingting Tan, M.D., Ph.D.

February 4th marks World Cancer Day, a day dedicated to raising global awareness of the importance of equal access to lifesaving cancer treatment and research. This year’s theme is “Close the Care Gap,” and it’s focused on what we can do together to remove barriers to care.

The organization I’m privileged to work for, City of Hope, has long understood the vital need to expand access to highly specialized cancer care and pioneering treatments.

We’re working to reimagine a world where access to advanced cancer care is equitable for all – no matter who you are or where you live.

World Cancer Day Tan

Courtesy of City of Hope

Dr. Tingting Tan

Here are some of the ways we’re doing that:

City of Hope is redefining the delivery of advanced cancer care as our NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center nears completion in Irvine. Opening this year, Lennar Foundation Cancer Center will be a focal point for innovation, providing patients access to the expertise of more than 400 physicians and 1,000 researchers and scientists who are focused on one thing – ending cancer. 

In addition to the cancer campus, City of Hope is developing a care network that expands access to our services. City of Hope’s four current clinical locations – City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island, City of Hope Newport Beach Lido, City of Hope Huntington Beach and City of Hope Irvine Sand Canyon, are delivering many advanced treatments to Orange County residents. That means advanced cancer care for you in your community.

As an academic research and treatment organization for cancer, City of Hope understands the importance of increasing access to lifesaving clinical trials. Our organization offers access to 1,000 trials. We know clinical trials lead to groundbreaking treatment for cancer and other serious illness. However, some research centers limit access to trial opportunities based on selection criteria that City of Hope regards as outmoded and potentially limiting to study outcomes.

People of different races, ethnicities, ages and sexual orientations have varying physical, genetic and environmental factors and vulnerabilities that come into play with diseases. An estimated 17%-21% of patients cannot enroll in clinical trials due to restrictive and exclusionary criteria. Our leadership and scientists aim to change that.

At the end of the day, patients with cancer want access to experts who specialize in their particular type of cancer, ideally located close to where they live. They want access to clinical trials of advanced therapies, and they want to be treated with compassion, dignity and respect. I’m excited about how City of Hope is providing more access for more patients and more families across Orange County.

We are working hard on the all-important goal of ending the disease, in every form.

On this World Cancer Day – and every day – that’s a future all of us want. 

Tingting Tan, M.D., Ph.D., is a medical oncologist who specializes in lung cancer at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. Visit www.CityofHope.org/OC to learn more.


Top five things to do at the ENC in February

Environmental Nature Center (ENC) offers a variety of opportunities to spend time enjoying nature in the month of in February.

Top five things Nature Play Club

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Photos courtesy of ENC

After School Nature Play Club offers an outdoor, hands-on learning experience for youngsters

1. This winter, the ENC is continuing to offer After School Nature Play Club to enhance the education of children in our community. After School Nature Play Club is offered on Wednesdays, February 2, 9, 26 and March 2 from 2-5 p.m., in four-week sessions. After School Nature Play Club will provide a learning experience while also giving campers the opportunity to get outside for fresh air, physical activity and a chance to hang out socially with their peers. Campers will spend time at the ENC with friends and mentors for hands-on learning, creative enrichment and expression, a chance to explore without stress. Age/Grade: Students enrolled in kindergarten through third grade (at least 5 years old by September 1). For more information and to register, go here.

Top five things Indarra

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Discover the delicious and nutritious plant-based dishes of India

2. Plant-Based Eating Series: Indian Food with Indarra on Sunday, Feb. 20. Join ENC and their friends from Indarra Modern Indian Cuisine for a fun and informative Indian Food Cooking Demo at 1 p.m. You’ll gather around as Savitur Badhwar from Indarra Indian Cuisine demonstrates how to create delicious and nutritious plant-based dishes with the unique flavors of India. For more information and to register, go here.

Top five things camp

Nature Camp is filled with interactive outdoor activities

3. Presidents Week Nature Camp on February 21-25. 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 most of their time outside, having a great time observing nature up close using tools like binoculars, magnifying lenses and microscopes. Science concepts are introduced in a fun environment, with crafts, games and hands-on activities. Presidents Week Nature Camp will provide a learning experience while also giving campers the opportunity to get outside for fresh air, physical activity and a chance to hang out socially with their peers. For more information and to register, go here.

Top five things volunteers

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High school volunteers will attend the “Leaders in Training” class on February 16

4. High School Volunteers Needed for Presidents Week Camp on February 21-25. “Leaders in Training” (LiT) are amazing high school students that help with Nature Camps during school breaks. This is a perfect opportunity for volunteers who enjoy working with children and it provides an excellent experience to include on a resume or college application. Although it is a volunteer position, applicants must interview to be eligible. Students, not parents, are responsible for communicating with ENC staff regarding the Leaders in Training opportunity. Training will occur on February 16 from 3-5 p.m. and attendance at training is required for all LiTs and those hours are considered volunteer hours. For more information and to register, go here.

Top five things teachers

Educators gather around the campfire to exchange ideas during “Teachers Night Out”

5. Teachers Night Out: Gardening on Thursday, Feb. 24 from 4-7 p.m. The Teachers Night Out series brings all kinds of educators together for fun afternoons of learning exciting hands-on ways to teach children about science and nature. Join ENC to walk through the Center, after hours, to discover some fun hands-on ways to incorporate science and nature across your curricula. This month’s theme is “How Does your Garden Grow?” Tis the season for planting. Come brainstorm ways to incorporate school gardens, potted classroom plants, edible projects and more in this fun evening with colleagues and friends. Afterwards you’ll enjoy a light meal together and share some wine by the campfire before breaking out the marshmallows and skewers to make some s’mores. For more information and to register, go here.

Environmental Nature Center is located at 1601 E. 16th St., Newport Beach. For more information, visit www.encenter.org.


Spinnaker Investment Group launches independent tax consultancy

Spinnaker Investment Group, a full-service independent investment services firm, has announced the formation of a tax preparation and consulting company, Spinnaker Tax Group. Under the experienced leadership of its CEO Jessica Estrada, the new tax company will operate as a standalone entity and provide value-added services to Spinnaker Investment Group clients and other individuals and businesses, said Morgan Christen, co-founder and CEO/CIO.

Spinnaker Investment Group has always strived to offer the same level of capabilities of a large institution within a boutique organization with a more personalized approach to service,” said Christen. “Launching Spinnaker Tax Group is an extension of this mission and vision, offering our clients more capabilities and convenience.”

Spinnaker Estrada

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Courtesy of Spinnaker Investment Group

Jessica Estrada, CEO, Spinnaker Tax Group

Spinnaker Tax Group is led by Jessica Estrada, a licensed U.S. tax practitioner with more than 15 years of professional experience. Estrada began her career at Deloitte Tax and has provided compliance and consulting services to individuals, business owners and their related entities (S Corporations, LLCs, Partnerships, C Corporations, Trusts).

Estrada said that Spinnaker Tax Group will be focused on individual and business tax planning, consulting and tax return preparation. Her prior experience also includes managing small to large Global Mobility (international/mobile employees) programs providing tax consulting for multinational companies, including income tax matters for international expatriates and US business travelers.

“We work with our clients’ financial advisers to ensure their tax strategy is in lockstep with an overall plan and objectives, not unlike having a full-time CFO and Big-3 team on your side,” Estrada said. “Because we stay current on the latest tax law changes, we can help businesses in a variety of industries including real estate, high tech, retail, manufacturing and medical.”

Spinnaker Tax Group has launched a website at https://www.spinntax.com

and Estrada can be reached at 949.396.6700 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Hoag physician named president of the American College of Nuclear Medicine

Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian announced that the American College of Nuclear Medicine (ACNM) has selected Gary Ulaner, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.N.M., James & Pamela Muzzy endowed chair in Molecular Imaging and Therapy and director of Molecular Imaging and Therapy for the Hoag Family Cancer Institute, as its 2022-2023 president. He began his role on January 29.

During his presidency, Dr. Ulaner will lead the renowned organization, whose mission is to provide education, training and advocacy for the most sought-after and trusted experts in nuclear medicine. 

Hoag physician named Ulaner

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Courtesy of Hoag Hospital

Dr. Gary Ulaner

“I’m looking forward to serving the needs of nuclear medicine physicians across the country and working with an outstanding ACNM board of directors,” said Dr. Ulaner. “As president, I will be developing accreditation programs to encourage optimal technical methods for molecular cancer therapies, as well as establishing a webinar series for radiologists and nuclear medicine physicians to gain knowledge of novel molecular imaging methods. These methods include PSMA-targeted imaging and therapy for patients with prostate cancer, estrogen receptor-targeted imaging for patients with breast cancer and rare pediatric oncologic imaging.

 As incoming president, Dr. Ulaner has further distinguished himself and Hoag as a leader and innovator in the field of nuclear medicine. Before joining Hoag, Dr. Ulaner served as the PET/CT expert on the Breast Cancer Disease Management Team at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Dual board-certified in radiology and nuclear medicine, Dr. Ulaner is a nationally recognized expert in the use of targeted imaging to help direct focused cancer therapies. He leads several National Institutes of Health (NIH) clinical trials in molecular imaging and therapeutics, including two active NIH R01 grants, and has received more than $8 million in extramural funding, including generous philanthropic support from Hoag Hospital Foundation donors. In addition to the James & Pamela Muzzy Endowed Chair in Molecular Imaging and Therapy, a second endowment recently established the Muzzy Family Endowed Fellowship in Molecular Imaging and Therapy. Through this fellowship, Dr. Ulaner will be training the next generation of molecular imaging and therapy experts at Hoag.   

“It’s an honor to congratulate Dr. Ulaner for his well-deserved role as the new ACNM president,” said Robert T. Braithwaite, president and CEO of Hoag. “The Hoag Family Cancer Institute is at the forefront of cancer innovation and we are proud to have a respected leader such as Dr. Ulaner continuing to advance the level of care provided to our community.” 

The ACNM is a 50-year-old institution comprised of physicians and other nuclear medicine professionals dedicated to enhancing the practice of nuclear medicine through study, education and improvement of clinical practice. Its goal is to assure a legislative, legal, regulatory and economic framework that encourages and makes practicable the safe, appropriate use of nuclear medicine procedures to improve the quality of healthcare service available to patients.

To learn more about Dr. Ulaner’s role at Hoag, visit www.hoag.org/cancer.


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members: 

As the number of new COVID-19 cases begins to decline throughout Orange County, Newport Beach’s permit counter, revenue operations and community centers reopened to the public on Monday, Jan. 31. These services had been limited to virtual and drop-off only on January 3 in response to the recent COVID surge. However, because community transmission remains high, the public is encouraged to conduct business remotely whenever possible. The state’s mask mandate remains in effect for the city’s public facilities. 

With the City Council approval last week of a General Plan Update Steering Committee, we are inviting residents to apply. This three-member committee is critical to the success of the city’s comprehensive General Plan update, which was last conducted in 2006. The Steering Committee will lead the overall General Plan update effort and make recommendations to the City Council, provide oversight of a larger policy advisory committee and provide periodic reports to the City Council. Any Newport Beach resident who is a registered voter may apply at this link. The deadline is February 16. 

On January 29, from 9 a.m. to noon the City Council’s annual planning session occurred, which informed budget priorities for the coming year. City directors presented current finances, capital improvement projects and homeless outreach and the Council provided direction that will shape the next fiscal year budget. Residents were able to attend in person at the City Council chambers or watch the live webstream at www.newportbeachca.gov/nbtvlive.

Organic Waste Recycling Rollout to Begin Next Week 

Beginning in the first week of February, Newport Beach residents will begin to receive green-top carts for state-mandated organic waste recycling, which includes yard waste and food scraps. To find out when your organic cart will be delivered, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/recycle and enter your address in the search function at the top of the page. 

The new program will utilize three separate carts: one for solid waste, one for mixed recyclables and a third for organic waste recycling, which includes food waste and landscaping waste items. Between February 1 and March 31, residents will begin receiving new, green-top recycling containers for organic waste, an optional two-gallon bucket for kitchen scraps and educational materials on how to recycle properly. 

Organic waste recycling is now mandatory under state law, to reduce the impact on landfills and reduce greenhouse gases produced by the decomposition of organic waste. For more information on the new program, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/recycle. To find out if your collection day has changed, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/findmycollectionday.

Click here for a short video on how to recycle organic waste.

Street Sweeping Changes Start This Week in Some Neighborhoods 

Starting February 1, the city’s street sweeping program will switch days of the week on portions of Balboa Peninsula (21st Street to G Street) and Corona del Mar (north of Coast Highway). Also, the neighborhoods of Irvine Terrance, the Port Streets and the north tip of Newport Heights are being changed. This will accommodate the changes in the new trash and recycling collection days. These changes will avoid conflicts, address parking conditions and maintain street sweeping effectiveness. Updated signage was installed this week and there will be a two-week parking enforcement transitional grace period. For more information on the changes to street sweeping, visit www.newportbeachca.gov/2022sweeping or call the city’s Utilities Department regarding any Street Sweeping inquiries at 949.644.3011. 

COVID-19 Cases in Newport Beach 

As of January 27, the total cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Newport Beach was 8,883, an increase of 409 cases since January 20. The total number of cases in Orange County as of January 27 was 503,292, an increase of 37,185 cases since January 20. The number of recovered COVID-19 patients countywide as of January 20 was 357,191. These figures are provided to Orange County by the California Department of Public Health. 

Testing and Vaccination Resources 

Self-collection, at-home COVID-19 Test Kits are available at no cost to people who work or live in Orange County and can be ordered online at https://ochealthinfo.com/covidtest. In addition, free tests are now available from the federal government through www.COVIDtests.gov or by calling 800.232.0233. You can order up to four rapid tests to be sent to your home address, which will be mailed at no cost through the U.S. Postal Service within seven to 12 days. 

Vaccines continue to be widely available throughout Orange County for walk-in, same day and future appointments. Individuals who are not yet vaccinated or boosted against COVID-19 or are eligible for a third dose (due to immunocompromise conditions) are encouraged to visit a local pharmacy or healthcare provider, or go online to www.Vaccines.gov, https://MyTurn.ca.gov or https://Othena.com, to schedule a vaccination appointment. For more information on COVID-19 information and resources, including case counts, vaccination and testing in Orange County, visit https://ochealthinfo.com/covid.

CDBG Notice of Funding Availability 

The Notice of Funding Availability for fiscal year 2022-2023 was published on January 15 for the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. The city receives funding each year from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development to benefit persons of low- and moderate- income (households earning less than 80 percent of the median income in Orange County). The Community Development Department will be accepting applications from non-profit organizations seeking to provide CDBG eligible programs and public services, including fair housing services. Additional information can be found on the city’s website. Completed applications will be accepted until 2 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 18. 

Homelessness Update 

–City Net, Newport Beach’s contract social services agency, processed an application and security deposit for a senior apartment for a woman who was awarded an Emergency Housing Voucher. Emergency Housing Vouchers are funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and allow people to pay affordable rent based on their fixed incomes. Nine people experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach have been awarded vouchers. The voucher program is administered by the Orange County Housing Authority. City Net is assisting Newport Beach clients with completing the necessary paperwork, obtaining bank statements, touring potential rental apartments and more. 

–Seventeen (17) people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter. 

–City Net referred a man to a sober living program. 

–City Net enrolled one person into their services and completed a Vulnerability Index Assessment. City Net utilizes the Vulnerability Index Assessment to screen clients on a number of factors to determine proper placement in the county’s Continuum of Care system. Some factors include age, health issues and length of time being unsheltered. 

–City Net enrolled a man into Telehealth mental health counseling.
To donate to those experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach, visit our Good Giving Program web page.

Volunteers Needed for Homeless Point in Time Count 

Sign up to help shape homeless services in Orange County for the next several years as part of the Point in Time Count, February 22 through February 24. Point in Time is a biennial count of people experiencing homelessness on a given night. The count provides vital information that helps the county better understand homelessness in the community and guides the way the county and its partners respond to homelessness in Orange County. 

Volunteer opportunities are available leading up to the event and during the Point in Time Count event. Sign up at www.everyonecountsoc.org/.

West Balboa Island Utility Undergrounding Nearly Complete 

Utility undergrounding work on West Balboa Island continues to progress. The contractor is currently busy wrapping up work on Agate Avenue. Last week, the contractor was able to set a vault adjacent to the Carol Beek Center and finish all conduit installation on Agate Avenue. Pavement restoration was addressed last week as the contractor prepared to have Agate Avenue open to all traffic by end of the day Friday, Jan. 28. 

Jamboree Construction to Begin February 6 with Nighttime Closures 

Beginning on Sunday, Feb. 6, construction work will require nightly closures of northbound Jamboree Road between Bayside Drive and East Coast Highway for about eight weeks. Southbound lanes will remain open, and northbound traffic will be directed to Bayside Drive as an alternate route. 

The northbound lanes in this area will be closed from 8:30 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sundays through Thursdays. Please see this map for details. The project, to replace a large, nearly 100-year-old water main that serves the entire city, is being done at night to minimize traffic disruption during the day. 

For questions, contact Alfred Castanon at 949.644.3314 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Michael Sinacori at 949.644.3342 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. from the city’s Public Works Department. 

Editor’s Note: Stu News received City Manager’s Updates on Friday, Jan. 28 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Local politics are taking shape and the money begins telling the story

Fair Game Toms new headshotPolitical contribution totals for local candidates were reported over the last few days as the filing period ended yesterday, January 31. The monies reported were campaign contributions given during the last six months of 2021. 

Perhaps the biggest news was the $141,079 in total contributions received by City Council candidate Joe Stapleton, bringing his calendar year war chest to over $156,000 to date.

Couple that with just $15,600 of reported expenses, leaves Stapleton sitting on an ending cash balance of $140,483, so far, with nine months left until Election Day.

Perhaps as equally impressive as the money Stapleton raised is that it came from some 300+ individual donations. Both the amount raised and the number of donors were record-setting numbers for an initial filing period for a Newport Beach City Council candidate.

Stapleton is running for the District 1 seat to be vacated by Diane Dixon, who herself is running for a State Assembly seat. More on Dixon a little later.

First, though, is a look at Stapleton’s announced opposition for the District 1 seat, namely Tom Miller.

Miller is a Newport Beach resident, obviously. He’s an extremely successful self-made businessman who sold his company in 2021, for let’s just say, a lot of money!

As Tom told me over lunch recently, he’s worked hard and has done “well enough” to make certain that his children and their children are well-taken care of. That’s certainly success in my mind.

Miller also pointed out that although he’s new to the election game, he’s confident he has what it takes to win, saying it’s what he’s done all his life.

His campaign disclosure statement, however, was almost the complete opposite of Stapleton’s at this point. Miller reported just $1,530 raised from two donors, along with a $125,000 personal loan to his campaign.

Additionally, Miller reported expenditures of $28,186, which was mostly comprised of two very impressive holiday messages to the community, one at Thanksgiving and one during the Christmas holiday season.

Stapleton and Miller make up the only contested council race to date for 2022.

Other campaign reports included Robyn Grant, the council candidate hoping to replace the District 4 seat being vacated by Kevin Muldoon. She reported donations of $59,239 from just under 50 donors. Both numbers are also impressive at this early date.

Joy Brenner, running for re-election in Corona del Mar for District 6, reported donations of $18,554 for the recent period, leaving her with an ending cash balance of nearly $21,000.

Lastly, Erik Weigand, actively running for Duffy Duffield’s District 3 seat, had no form FPPC 460 available for review prior to publication time.

Just to reiterate, Grant, Brenner and Weigand have no announced opposition to this point, but the formal filing period for Council does not officially open until summer.

There’s a lot to still happen on that local scene!

Several other races with strong local interest include Diane Dixon’s bid for the 72nd Assembly District. Dixon, who currently serves on the Newport Beach City Council, but is termed out, reported contributions of $210,000 when combining totals raised in both her Assembly and prior OC Supervisor accounts.

She’s also received major endorsements along the way from the Lincoln Club, the Republican Party of Orange County and from a number of top OC Republicans.

On a different front, the campaign of Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon, who is actively raising money for a run at the District 5 OC Supervisor seat, appears to be in some potential turmoil. 

His recent filing shows just over $50,000 in recent contributions, to bring his calendar year-to-date contributions to $176,907. That sounds impressive, until you see off-setting total expenditures of $389,486.

His reported Current Cash Statement still reports an ending balance of $32,875, with a remaining outstanding debt of $45,212.

Still, though, Muldoon appears to be actively seeking donations.

Muldoon is expected to face Katrina Foley, who is OC Supervisor for the 2nd District, but because of re-drawn district lines will now move over to the 5th District.

Foley’s big announcement this week is that she has hired Alyssa Napuri, formerly Congressman Harley Rouda’s Campaign Manager for the same role.

• • •

The Vincent D. Mulroy Scholarship Award was presented late last month to Newport Harbor High School senior and star football quarterback AJ Guitron-Moore at the Tars season-ending football banquet.

The award is presented annually to the NHHS graduating offensive football player who has demonstrated the highest level of athleticism, citizenship and academics. 

Guitron-Moore quarterbacked the Sailors to the 2021 CIF Division 6 Championship.

Vincent Mulroy, the award’s namesake, was an accomplished athlete and student leader at NHHS who graduated in 1975. He then headed on to Stanford University, where he was an Academic All-American wide receiver under coach Bill Walsh and continued to excel in life.

After his untimely death in 2009, teammates and friends created the award in his honor, which also includes $1,500 towards the recipient’s college tuition.

Mulroy’s former teammate and long-time Newport Beach resident Rick John presented the award to Guitron-Moore, adding, “With Vince Mulroy, you knew you were in the presence of greatness.”

Congratulations AJ.

• • •

It’s baaackkk! After a one-year hiatus while the world was fighting through the COVID-19 pandemic, the Hoag Classic returns to Newport Beach Country Club March 2-6. The tournament, formerly known as the Toshiba Classic, is presented by Konica Minolta and City National Bank.

During the history of the tournament, the Hoag Classic has become one of the most philanthropic events in PGA TOUR Champions history, raising more than $20 million for Hoag and a number of other local charities.

Although the week is about great professional golf, there’s so much more to it. Events throughout the week include multiple pro-ams, an always great Tuesday Breakfast with a Champion, presented by Allergan, a Saturday Military Appreciation Day, presented by CoreLogic, along with a Sunday Student Day, presented by Kingston Technology.

With thousands of locals who attend the event, add in 250+ corporate sponsors who spend the week entertaining customers and clients, along with some 800 community volunteers and it truly is Newport Beach at its best!

• • •

And just as an aside, anyone wondering how the Newport Beach Country Club course is playing these days, no worries, it’s great! 

I played there yesterday with member Doug Forde in a NBCC Employee Scholarship Fund Tournament. The tournament was designed by several members and supported by ownership with the express intent to raise money to support a healthy club employee scholarship fund.

Members supported it with a sold-out field.

So, with just a little over a month until the pros arrive, I can tell you the course is in near perfect condition, with some subtle changes that has made the course better, and from what I hear, more of those are coming later in the year.


Canyon view

Canyon View.jpg 2.1

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Photo by Joel Goldstein

Wispy high clouds gather on the horizon off the coast of El Moro


City Manager Grace Leung to present at next month’s Speak Up Newport

City Manager Grace Leung

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Courtesy of Speak Up Newport

Speak Up Newport’s February Zoom meeting will feature Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung who will review this year’s City Council annual goal setting meeting. Through this, Leung will take three to four hours of discussion and condense it down into a concise presentation, followed by a Q&A. The meeting is set for Wednesday, Feb. 9 from 5-6 p.m. To join in on this free event, registration is required here.


Newport Beach – A Look Back

Photo series courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

Newport Beach A Look Back fishing catch 2.1.2022

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A man with his fishing catch on the Ruby Street public dock off North Bay Front, Balboa Island, 1930s

Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach and the Museum Store are located at 210 B Marine Ave., Balboa Island. They are open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free general admission on all days. Two-hour parking is available on Marine Avenue. For more information, call 949.675.3952, visit www.balboaislandmuseum.org or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Towering inferno

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

The lighthouse at Marina Park appears to be aglow with the late afternoon sunlight


Newport Bay Conservancy co-hosts World Wetlands Day celebration

Newport Bay Conservancy is co-hosting the two-day World Wetlands Day celebration for the public, along with the Sea & Sage Audubon Society, Amigos de Bolsa Chica and Huntington Beach Wetlands Conservancy. The event takes place on January 29 and 30.

The theme for this celebration is Migratory Birds of the Pacific Flyway. Saturday, Jan. 29 will feature online symposium talks by eight migratory bird experts. Then return on Sunday, Jan. 30 for optional behind-the-scenes tours of the wetlands of Orange County to observe some migratory and resident birds. The speakers will cover everything from new technologies used to track migrating birds to conservation issues regarding wetlands of California’s Central Valley. All talks take place via Zoom and the link will be emailed to attendees before the event.

The symposium is free, but you are welcome to make a voluntary donation, which will be split equally between the four sponsoring organizations.

Among the five scheduled tours on Sunday, Jan. 30, two provide you with an experience at Upper Newport Bay.

–Tour 4: Big Canyon Bird Tour with Newport Bay Conservancy from 8-11:30 a.m. Meet at Big Canyon Parking Lot located on Back Bay Drive (turn right on Back Bay Drive from San Joaquin Hills Road). The maximum number of participants is 20.

Note: True rain will cancel this event, but the threat of rain or a light drizzle will not.

–Tour 5: Kayak Tour of Upper Newport Bay with the Newport Bay Conservancy from 12-2 p.m. Meet at the Newport Aquatic Center, 1 Whitecliffs Drive, Newport Beach. The maximum number of participants is 20. Cost: $10/kayaker, which supports the maintenance of their kayak equipment.

For tickets, the speaker line-up and more information, go here.


SCR announces cast, creative team for What I Learned in Paris

South Coast Repertory (SCR) with David Ivers, artistic director and Paula Tomei, managing director announcing the cast and creative team for What I Learned in Paris by Pearl Cleage and directed by Lou Bellamy. The play runs February 19 through March 19 on the Segerstrom Stage.

Originally scheduled to start February 12, What I Learned In Paris will now begin one week later with the same number of performances as originally planned. The decision to delay rehearsals and performances was made in the interest of protecting the health and safety of SCR’s artists, audiences, staff and volunteers.

The cast features Erika LaVonn (Eve Madison), Celeste M. Cooper (Lena Jefferson), James T. Alfred (John Nelson), Russell Andrews (J.P. Madison) and Kaye Winks (Ann Madison). LaVonn and Cooper are no stranger to Cleage’s work. LaVonn played Eve in Indiana Repertory Theatre’s 2015 production of What I Learned in Paris and Cooper played Delia in Court Theatre’s production of Blues for an Alabama Sky.

The creative team includes Macelle Mahala, dramaturg; Vicki Smith, set designer; Dana Rebecca Woods, costume design; Don Darnutzer, lighting design; Jesse Mandapat, sound design; Joanne DeNaut, CSA, casting and Kathryn Davies, production stage manager.

SCR announces Bellamy and Fireflies cast

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Courtesy of SCR

(L-R) “Fireflies” cast members Christiana Clark and Lester Purry with Lou Bellamy, who previously directed “Fireflies” in January 2020 on the Julianne Argyros Stage at SCR. He is now directing “What I Learned in Paris,” which comes to Segerstrom Stage, February 19 through March 19.

“Pearl Cleage is a playwright I’ve admired for a long time and I’m thrilled we’re bringing her important work to SCR for the first time,” Ivers said. “What I Learned in Paris is a clever, funny romantic comedy that makes us laugh as it teaches us about a pivotal time in American history. And having worked with and studied under Lou Bellamy, I can’t put into words how incredibly fortunate we are to welcome him back to SCR. If you saw his masterful direction of Fireflies, you understand why he is the perfect person to direct this work, along with the rest of this talented cast and creative team.”

Cleage had a front-row seat for that pivotal time in American history. She worked as Maynard Jackson’s [first black mayor of Atlanta, GA] press secretary and speechwriter before becoming – as Ivers described her – “one of America’s most important playwrights.” Plays like Flyin’ West, Blues for an Alabama Sky and Bourbon at the Border illustrated Cleage’s mastery addressing issues of race, gender and domestic violence. Her 1997 debut novel, What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day, was a New York Times best-seller and Oprah Book Club Selection. It drew critical praise for Cleage’s approach of empowering women undergoing obstacles in their lives. 

Bellamy returns to SCR for the first time since directing Fireflies by Donja R. Love in January 2020. This is the latest stop on an accomplished directorial journey that took Bellamy to Arizona Theatre Company, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Cleveland Play House, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Guthrie Theater, The Kennedy Center and Hartford Stage Company, among others. The founder and artistic director emeritus of Penumbra Theatre Company in St. Paul, MN., Bellamy built Penumbra into one of the country’s premier theatres dedicated to exploring the African-American experience.

A 2007 Obie Award winner for directing August Wilson’s Two Trains Running, Bellamy established Penumbra into one of the leading theatres of Wilson’s work. One of Penumbra’s 39 world premieres was Wilson’s first professional production: Black Bart and the Sacred Hills (1977).

Set in 1973 Atlanta in the wake of Maynard Jackson’s election as the first African-American mayor of a major Southern City, What I Learned in Paris takes you behind the scenes to the campaign operatives who helped make Atlanta into the “new Black capital of America.” Love triangles mix with office politics to create a fast-paced romantic comedy that addresses the intersection of race, class and gender.

Jackson is not a character in What I Learned in Paris. But Cleage’s snapshot of Jackson’s impact on this time in history and its enduring legacy across many dynamics provides a valuable lens into issues that remain important 50 years later.

Tickets are now on sale and range in price from $26-$93, with additional discounts available for educators, seniors and theatregoers ages 25 and under. Tickets can be purchased online or by phone at 714.708.5555. More information is available at www.scr.org

“We want to stress that we’re taking every measure to ensure our audiences can enjoy our wonderful performances with this incredible cast and creative team in a safe environment,” Tomei said. 

South Coast Repertory is located at 655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Celebrate Lunar New Year with Wing Lam and family at Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

Celebrate Lunar New Year with Wing Lam, Youlen Chan (Phoenix Bakery and friend of Lam’s) and the Lee family at Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach on Tuesday, Feb. 8 beginning at 6 p.m.

Museum members are invited to join the reception with tea, desserts and wine. Sweet treats are provided by Phoenix Bakery. RSVP to 949.675.3952.

Celebrate Lunar New Year Lams

Courtesy of Balboa Island Museum of Newport Beach

(L-R) Wing Lam’s parents Lee Cheong Kwong and Lee So Ching with Wing Lam

Throughout the month of February, the Museum will display the Lunar New Year Exhibit, honoring restaurateurs Wing Lam, Cheong Lee and their family. Cheong Lee opened Shanghai Pine Gardens on Balboa Island in 1969; Wing and his brothers founded the Wahoo’s Fish Taco chain.

The Lunar New Year Exhibit will showcase the history of the family, who immigrated to Balboa Island from Mainland China.

Wing was born in Brazil, one of five sons of Lee Cheong Kwong (Cheong Lee) and Lee So Ching, where his father and mother ran a Chinese restaurant in the 1950s. In 1964, his father and eldest brother Yong Lee (now deceased) immigrated to America, and the rest of the family – Lee So Ching, and brothers Yong, Wing, Ed and Mingo – followed in 1975. They opened a restaurant in Newport Beach, Shanghai Pine Garden, where everyone in the family helped. 

Wing’s parents wanted their children to go to college to become a doctor, lawyer, or engineer. Although Wing majored in engineering at San Diego State University, he preferred the party atmosphere and chose a different direction, eventually majoring in finance. 

In 1988, he and his two younger brothers, Ed and Mingo, co-founded Wahoo’s Fish Taco in Costa Mesa, and the rest is history. The entrepreneurial spirit and restaurant savvy garnered from their father and mother proved to be the recipe for success. The flavors of Wahoo’s incorporated a mixture of traditional Chinese and Brazilian flavors with the tastes of Mexican cuisine experienced during their travels to Mexico. 

Wing is a dedicated family man, a community philanthropist, a frequent guest speaker and an avid surfer. According to Wing, “With 60 locations across the U.S. and Japan, we hope to continue our mission to nourish our communities with food and experiences and contribute to charitable initiatives focused on ending hunger, caring for the environment and educational opportunities for children.”


Civic Center hosts special blood drive for former mayor’s son in law

The Newport Beach Civic Center is hosting a special blood drive in partnership with the Southern California Blood Bank, a division of San Diego Blood Bank, on Tuesday, Feb. 1 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Donors can donate on behalf of Eric Proul, former Newport Beach Mayor Dennis O’Neil’s son in law, noting patient code EP21. Proud was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia which requires him to receive regular red blood and platelet transfusions. He is grateful to the blood donors who keep him healthy while he waits for a bone marrow transplant. Proul’s mother-in-law Thais O’Neil, who resides in Newport Beach, asked for a blood drive to be held here.

If donors are unable to donate on this day, they can go to the new, permanent Southern California Blood Bank donation location at the Irvine Business District, 7 Corporate Park, Suite 130, Irvine.

Anyone 17 and older, who weighs at least 114 pounds and is in good health may be eligible to donate blood. A good meal and plenty of fluids are recommended prior to donation. Appointments are strongly encouraged. Photo identification is required.

For more information, visit www.scbloodbank.org or call 1.844.380.5220.

The Civic Center is located at 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach. The Bloodmobile will be parked by the Community Room.


ENC continues After School Nature Play Club this winter…so sign up now

This winter, the Environmental Nature Center (ENC) is continuing to offer After School Nature Play Club to enhance the education of children in our community.

ENC continues Play Club

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Courtesy of ENC

After School Nature Play Club is geared for youngsters in grades K-3. The children here enjoy gardening together.

After School Nature Play Club is being offered on Wednesdays, Feb. 2, 9 and 16 and March 2 from 2-5 p.m., in four-week sessions. Nature Play Club will provide a learning experience while also giving campers the opportunity to get outside for fresh air, physical activity and a chance to hang out socially with their peers.

Campers will spend time at the ENC with friends and mentors for hands-on learning, creative enrichment and expression and a chance to explore without stress. Open to age/grade: Students enrolled in kindergarten through third grade (at least 5 years old by September 1).

For more information and to register, go here.


Capturing iconic Newport Beach and beyond: Palm Desert Civic Center Park

Capturing iconic Newport Beach Palm Desert

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Artwork by Don Krotee

Palm Desert is right in the center of Coachella Valley, Calif. and was the ancestral homeland of the Cahuilla Native Americans. Since the first date palms were planted, the area became one of the fastest growing, during the 1980s-1990s. Currently, Palm Desert offers a wide range of recreational activities and 12 major parks including the Civic Center Park (pictured) spanning 70 acres. This piece was painted on site, Plein air, using 16” x 20” on 300-pound Fabriano paper.

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Don Krotee is a 35-year resident of Newport Beach, a Corona del Mar Residents Association member, a board member of SPON and lives in Corona del Mar. He is an architect and a fine artist who has been drawing and painting from an early age. He provides Stu News drawings and paintings from iconic Newport Beach and the world. Follow @donkrotee.art for more from this artist.


Newport Beach – A Look Back

Photo series courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

'Mac' McCormICK Fire Station 1.25

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“Mac” McCormick in front of the Balboa Island Fire Station with the station’s truck, circa 1931

Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach and the Museum Store are located at 210 B Marine Ave., Balboa Island. They are open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free general admission on all days. Two-hour parking is available on Marine Avenue. For more information, call 949.675.3952, visit www.balboaislandmuseum.org or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


City Manager Grace Leung to present at next month’s Speak Up Newport

City Manager Grace Leung

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Courtesy of Speak Up Newport

Speak Up Newport’s February Zoom meeting will feature Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung who will review this year’s City Council annual goal setting meeting. Through this, Grace will take three to four hours of discussion and condense it down into a concise presentation, followed by a Q&A. The meeting is set for Wednesday, Feb. 9 from 5-6 p.m. To join in on this free event, registration is required here.


For Orange County, 2022 is the Year of Hope: City of Hope’s NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center is opening in Irvine this year

City of Hope has a prediction for the new year: The future is going to be filled with hope for Orange County. Our National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and academic center is opening this year. More world-renowned specialists will be accessible for our patients, and first-in-the-region breakthrough treatments will be available without leaving home. We’ll be closer than ever to ending cancer, and it’s all happening right here in the OC. 

Not long from now, we’ll make history when we open Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County. It will be followed by Orange County’s only hospital exclusively focused on treating and curing cancer, opening in 2025.

For Orange County Walker

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Photos courtesy of City of Hope

Annette M. Walker, president, City of Hope Orange County

Our comprehensive cancer center at FivePoint Gateway in Irvine will provide access to more than 400 physicians and 1,000 researchers and scientists focused on curing cancer. Patients will benefit from access to nearly 1,000 clinical trials each year and breakthrough treatment options, all delivered by a compassionate team of experts who take our patients’ hands and never let go.

Lennar Foundation Cancer Center is not only the most advanced cancer center in the county, it’s the region’s only standalone cancer center. At 190,000 square feet, it’s four football fields worth of cancer treatment and research. Distinguishing services include a clinical research center offering access to phase 1-3 trials, an outpatient center offering diagnostic imaging and screenings, medical oncology, radiation oncology, surgical oncology and much more. 

For Orange County Lennar

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Rendering of Lennar Foundation Cancer Center

Additionally, the center offers a range of treatment options – from chemotherapy to immunotherapy and more – for even the most aggressive cancer. New prevention and diagnostic programs will also be explored as we unlock the potential of genomics and precision medicine.

Staffed by clinicians and scientists at the top of their field, the center is also a focal point for medical innovation. Here, many of the world’s most distinguished experts in cancer care will continue City of Hope’s legacy for groundbreaking work that has led to discoveries that touch millions of lives worldwide. City of Hope – where research led to four of the world’s most-used cancer drugs – will bring this level of extraordinary expertise to the Orange County campus. We will quickly transform research breakthroughs into lifesaving treatments for the patients who need them today.

But there is even more to our care. At City of Hope, science – combined with compassion – is a proven combination that leads to the absolute best outcomes.

Our network of advanced cancer care is growing, too. City of Hope now has four locations throughout Orange County. These locations, in Irvine, Newport Beach and Huntington Beach, are ensuring our patients can access City of Hope’s renowned physicians and services closer to where they live.

As we are growing, so are our teams. Yes, Orange County, we are hiring. City of Hope is recruiting the most outstanding health care professionals and clinical experts – people who were called to help us deliver on our mission. We are eager to welcome new colleagues to the team and contribute to our region’s health and economy. 

We believe the outlook for 2022 is not just bright – it’s hopeful. Our patients will get the most advanced treatments for their cancer types. More world-class services will be available. And, with our groundbreaking discoveries, we will reverse the course of cancer in our nation. It will all happen in the year ahead, right here in Orange County.

This is paid content by City of Hope Orange County. For more information on the City of Hope Orange County Newport Beach location, visit https://www.cityofhope.org/orange-county/locations/newport-beach/cancer-care.


On the Harbor: My friends at NOVMAR are going to insure you’re doing things right

By LEN BOSE

Last May I received a call from my good friend Craig Chamberlain, “Hey Len, work is getting in the way and I have to drop off the crew list for Trans Pac.” He went on to explain how the marine insurance business that he works in has been turned upside down, and he needed to stay in town to keep his company on a straight course. 

Chamberlain has owned his own marine insurance business for 38 years, now under the name NOVMAR. You probably have noticed their sign and office along Mariners’ Mile on Pacific Coast Highway. His wife, Julie, and I were both in the same second-grade class, although we did not know each other that well. She sat at the front of the class while I was in the back corner facing the opposite wall.

Now that the Chamberlains have their company back on the foils, I thought I would reach out to him again for an update on what’s doing in the marine insurance business. 

On the Harbor My friends West Coast Marine

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Courtesy of West Coast Marine

West Coast Marine on Newport Boulevard

Chamberlain explained the changes in the marketplace as simply as he could, but remember, I sat in the back of the class. 

“With over a dozen marine insurance companies leaving the market, things have gotten tighter, with fewer companies participating, making underwriting even more difficult, as the remaining companies become more selective with reduced capacity and higher prices. 

“They say no more often now than they used to. We’re challenged to submit complete underwriting packages to provide the best terms for our clients. However, if an agent sends in an incomplete package and the client is turned down as a result, it’s extremely difficult to provide additional information and try to then turn that no into a yes. 

“With fewer marine insurance agencies available, the remaining companies just can’t write billions and billions of yacht insurance. They have their capacity limits, because if they write billions of dollars of insurance on boats say sitting in Fort Lauderdale and a hurricane comes through, they’re done. That lack of capacity has really affected the market.”

I then asked him how a customer should complete their due diligence before purchasing a boat?

“Buyers should have a clear understanding of their insurance requirements before they even start shopping, similar to getting prequalified for a loan. One doesn’t want to learn the fine details of their policy the day before the deal closes. 

“In today’s world it’s easy for owners to overbuy and not have the experience to run a 35’ or larger boat. So, many companies will just say no, while other companies will require a skipper for the boat the first year. And others might have the owner receive training, and then be signed off by their skippers,” Chamberlain added. 

He went on to explain what underwriters are looking for today. “There are variables, for example, let’s say the vessel is under 10 years old, it’s a production boat that is used in our local waters with an experienced owner. This will take two days to get a couple of quotes. 

“But, if a boat is over 10 years old, the underwriter is looking for a clean survey with a resume of the owner’s experience owning vessels of a similar type and size. A clean survey is then very important, because, up until a couple of years ago, underwriters had a better understanding that 25-year-old boats would have a larger recommendation list. Today, vessels need to have a clean survey, along with the owner having the experience for that type of vessel,” said Chamberlain.

Boat owners have to also keep in mind that the information they give about their experience can be easily proven, or that if they have a claim, say due to lack of maintenance, the insurance companies will not pay or they’ll rescind the policy. 

Chamberlain and I have the same opinion, that sellers should take the time to get their boats ready for sale and get a survey beforehand. The insurance agency’s largest concern will be if that boat sinks or burns. 

So, if there are bad thru-hulls, broken hoses, missing hose clamps, bilge pumps issues, leaky shaft logs, or unused wiring that has never been removed, these items will alarm underwriters and they will probably just say no. 

In the past, brokers would work out a survey allowance with the buyer to allow for some time to make the recommended fixes. That option is now becoming a thing of the past. This could lead to problems for some sellers if they place a damaged boat back in the water and then they don’t have insurance. 

And to make matters worse, with today’s shipyards being weeks out before they can fit repairs into their scheduling, this can lead to a volcanic eruption for most sellers.

I next asked Chamberlain what the best ways were for boat owners to maintain their insurance policies. “If something changes, and/or you leave your navigation area, you will need to update your policy. Likewise, if you purchase a new dingy, update your fishing or diving equipment, get new jet skis, foil boards, or deck slides, simply make certain your agent knows. 

“If any type of charter occurs, one will need to update their policy with a special endorsement. If there is any significant change, for example, if you re-power the boat, it never hurts to give updates to your insurance agent on what you are doing with your vessel. If you go cruising, advise your agent six months ahead of time, they’ll want crew resumes and a general outline of your plans.”

The Chamberlains are not paying me to write this story, but we all know how closely knit this marine industry is. I have worked with them for more than 32 years myself and there are many reasons why I refer my clients to NOVMAR for marine insurance. All of their agents are boaters with tons of experience and they have offices all over the country to help their clients. 

Also, their Mexico company started 12 years ago and is licensed in Mexico with a staff of 15. If there is a problem while down there, it’s an advantage to their clients to have local representation. Having an agent who can speak to the local authorities or Port Captain can always be helpful.

The Chamberlains have cruised Mexico, so I had to ask them which was their favorite destination?

“Playa La Ropa, off of Zihuatanejo, is pretty darn nice. We spent a month there. And, the whole Sea of Cortez is like one big anchorage, you’re always only a short distance from the next one. I think it’s a pretty magical place,” said Chamberlain.

Sea ya.

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Len Bose is a yachting enthusiast, yacht broker and harbor columnist for Stu News Newport.


Supervisor Foley receives new county committee assignments

Supervisor Katrina Foley was appointed to serve on various OC committees at the recent January meeting of the Orange County Board of Supervisors. 

She was appointed to CalOptima; the Emergency Management Council; First 5 Orange County, Children & Families Commission; Law Library Board of Trustees; Newport Bay Watershed Executive Committee; One Water, One Watershed; OC Community Corrections Partnership; OC Juvenile Justice Coordinating Council; OC Transportation Authority; Santa Ana River Flood Control Protection Agency; South OC Watershed Management Area Executive Committee and Southern California Association of Governments. 

“I look forward to having the opportunity to continue to work on issues that impact all Orange County residents,” said Supervisor Foley. “My priorities remain COVID-19 Relief, Homelessness & Housing, Sustainability & Transportation, Serving our Veterans, Workforce & Economic Development and Transparency in Governance.” 

“I would like to thank Chairman Chaffee for listening to and entrusting me with the opportunity to address these important issues. I am committed to innovative solutions and will work hard alongside my colleagues throughout the coming year,” said Supervisory Foley. 

Supervisor Foley was elected to represent the communities of Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, Cypress, Huntington Beach, La Palma, Los Alamitos, Seal Beach, Stanton, the unincorporated area of Rossmoor, and portions of Buena Park and Fountain Valley. However, under new redistricting maps, she was assigned the balance of her term to represent Orange County’s new central Second District, which includes Santa Ana and portions of Anaheim, Garden Grove, Orange, Tustin and unincorporated North Tustin.


Take Five: Meet Richard Julian, developer/resident of the AERIE condo project in CdM

By AMY SENK

A decade or so ago, as a journalist covering all things Corona del Mar, the Aerie condominium project was my bread and butter. For years, I covered the proposed project, which aimed to replace a 50-year-old apartment complex with high-end luxury condos, as it wound through the city Planning Commission and later the California Coastal Commission. The project broke ground in 2015, and eight months ago, developer Richard Julian and his wife, Karen, moved to the top floor, to one of seven units. I watched it go through the approval process, I watched it being constructed, and last December, I watched the new residents enjoy the boat parade from a terrace near the pool and spa. After such a long journey, I decided I needed to catch up with Julian to learn more.

Take Five Ricahrd Julian

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Courtesy of Richard Julian

Richard Julian

Q: You’ve been living in Aerie for eight months now. What is the best part so far?

A: The view and sunsets. Waking up each morning and going to bed looking at the vibrant lights in the harbor are mesmerizing. Although there are several other benefits of living here, those are priceless and impossible to match. Especially after waiting six months, living on a boat, waiting for it to be finished, looking up at it and thinking, “Oh, we could be there….” Not that that was that bad, but….The first night we stayed here, (a neighbor) happened to be walking past and said she wanted to see it. We took her up, and we sat there looking out. It was fun talking to her. And the next morning, I had shoulder surgery, shoulder replacement. I got to be there one night and then I was in the hospital recovering.

Q: What were some of the biggest challenges in getting the project built?

A: Permitting took over 10 years. And…when a builder builds a tract of houses, there are no real neighbors around. He’s building a big tract. When you are building like we did, you’re trying to be sensitive to and careful with the neighbors, but every day is an expense. At the height of this, it was costing almost $40,000 a day to carry costs, because it’s seven homes in one. Every day there was a surprise. A lot of it went smoothly, but at the end, when we were waiting for a transformer that was bigger than originally planned, mostly because of the electric company, that was frustrating. The finishing touches take way longer than you think. Generally, it was a challenge, working in such a beautiful and longstanding neighborhood in an environment where our design needed to pass muster with all neighbors. There were many ideas of what would or wouldn’t be fitting in this neighborhood. We wanted to address all of those concerns.

Q: What other projects are you working on now?

A: My main business is joining forces with long-time partners and purchasing apartment communities here in Southern California. At present, our investors and Advanced (Real Estate Services) own more than 10,000 apartments in Southern California, all within an hour of here. We have about 1,600 units in Santa Ana, a similar number in Anaheim, Bellflower, Lakewood, some out in the Inland Empire. We’re a long-term holder, so we keep them forever. We don’t buy-sell, buy-sell. We’re a different landlord with how we renovate things and fix them up, probably more sensitive to our tenants. We have our own crews. Our employment base is more than 420 devoted employees. We are devoted to preserving these properties as beautiful communities. It’s a lot of headaches, but it’s pretty rewarding. I like to think we’re really sensitive to the needs of our tenants and sensitive to our investors and sensitive to our employees. We’re always trying to think of what makes life better for tenants without spending a fortune of your investor dollars, so there’s a balance there.

Take Five Richard with Aerie

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Photo by Amy Senk

Richard Julian with AERIE in the background

Q: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to build a home in Newport Beach?

A: Study the neighborhood. Talk with your neighbors. Be patient and appreciate that everyone has their own opinions. When building, respect that your neighbors are being burdened by the construction. Supervise your construction crews to be mindful of your neighbors’ needs. Control noise and dust. Instruct your workers to park responsibly. Check in with your neighbors to make sure that they are not being inconvenienced.

Take Five Aerie on bluffs

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Courtesy of Richard Julian

AERIE, located on the bluffs (at Carnation and Ocean), provides unparalleled sunset and water views

Q: What are your thoughts on housing in Newport Beach and government requirements when it comes to housing?

A: As in all of the state, housing is short, and prices are at a premium. Life in our area is unlike most of the world. We are blessed to be able to live in one of the most beautiful and stable places in the world. Government requirements…what is really complicated about it is why the government has to be involved with it to begin with. I mean, we are a free country, right? We were built on freedom of speech, freedom, supply and demand. If a builder wanted to build a 300-unit apartment building, he’ll probably be saddled with 20 percent of the units being affordable. How do you calculate what affordable means? Is it based on median income in the City of Newport Beach? Is it based on the income of the county, the state? What says what median income is, and why does a builder have to provide that within his development, his apartment building? If he has a 300-unit apartment building, and 60 of the units have to rent for $1,200 a month, and the others are $3,000 a month. Why is the government really involved with that? Versus maybe the government allowing, and when I say government, I mean city or whatever it is, allowing the right density, higher density, in a certain location within the city, or in a different city even within the county. Should Newport Beach even have affordable units versus another city? I’m not running for office. We buy buildings, and we live with whatever the rules are. But we’re seeing an owner of a piece of property, to provide affordable housing within his development, means he’s charging more for the other units. 

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Amy Senk is a long-time resident of Corona del Mar and a regular contributor to Stu News Newport


The new VEA raises the game, but there’s still something for everyone visiting Newport Beach

By GARY SHERWIN

I was asked an interesting question last week during the quarterly board meeting of Newport Beach and Company by former city councilman Tony Petros. It was an important one, too.

With the opening this Spring of VEA (pronounced VAY-Ah and the soon to be new name of the Marriott Newport Beach Hotel & Spa) and its increased focus on luxury, where does that leave the average visitor who doesn’t have the means to stay there?

It’s a valid point because VEA won’t be alone in that upscale category. Other exciting hospitality projects will be announced soon that will likely follow that same strategy including some in the retail sector.

Does that mean that Newport Beach only cares about affluent visitors? Are we saying that if you don’t have the big cash to spend, choose another city to visit?

The answer is an emphatic no!

The new VEA Gary Sherwin

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Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

No one is saying that you need to be millionaire to come visit. But it’s also important to note that the essential ingredient that brings the wealthy and the budget conscious to town is very much the same. It is in fact our secret sauce.

That is, regardless of where the visitor stays, the main draw is our aspirational lifestyle. We’ve always been more than a city. We are a way of life that is desirable no matter what size your bank balance. With our superb Mediterranean climate, beaches, harbor and numerous recreational opportunities, they all create an envious attraction for people of all financial means.

You can stay and play here at many affordable accommodations including Short Term Lodging options. You don’t have to dine at Mastro’s and can enjoy some pretty awesome seafood at the decidedly more affordable Bear Flag. But you still get the benefits of our sunshine and the amenities of living in a city that embodies the ultimate Southern California lifestyle.

Even those people choosing hotels farther from the water and watching their vacation dollars can enjoy a pretty good time especially since it is only about 15 minutes to get to and from anywhere in town.

But why properties like VEA or Pelican Hill are important is that they elevate the game and our product throughout the city. It’s often called the Halo Effect which means that when one luxury property opens, everyone in town, regardless of price point, sees a benefit. When Newport Beach is increasingly seen as more of a luxury destination, that creates a greater aspirational appeal for all properties. Just having a Newport Beach address is enough for most hotels to increase their nightly rate over many neighboring cities.

Younger visitors are often aspirational in nature. They may stay at more affordable hotels right now, but they often desire to eventually stay at more luxurious ones in a few years. In the meantime, they want that coveted aspirational experience now. Retail has known this point for years. That’s why many stores, like H&M, sell trendy designer-like clothes at lower price points aimed at younger buyers. That doesn’t mean they won’t shop at Neiman Marcus in a few years.

The goal of Visit Newport Beach is to market to people who can benefit the community through their visitor spending at restaurants, shops, attractions and hotels. They don’t have to be millionaires, just people who are willing to stay a few days and visit some places in town while opening their wallet.

And those who can’t afford that premium experience now have plenty of other ways to enjoy themselves. Despite our community’s wealth, we are not an elitist destination. Newport Beach has always been open to surfers in vans, middle class families and yes, people of means.

Having a luxury hotel is one thing. Having a luxury destination that is accessible to all is another. No matter someone’s income, it is important for everyone to be invited to enjoy our special way of life.

Those who can do it at an impressive hotel with water views are certainly welcome. But if a visitor comes to town and wants a suite at Pelican Hill but it seems a bit out of reach right now, well, that’s OK because that’s what dreams are for. There is always next time.

Gary Sherwin is President & CEO of Visit Newport Beach and Newport Beach & Company.


City struggles with “impossible task” of meeting housing requirements after state rejects Banning Ranch as an RHNA option

By SARA HALL

During a study session this week, City Council agreed to keep Banning Ranch in the housing inventory – despite a state agency rejecting it – as an additional option to pursue, but not include in the city’s mandated housing numbers. 

Newport Beach community development staff presented an update on Tuesday (Jan. 25) on the draft Housing Element, including input recently received in a comment letter from the California Department of Housing and Community Development. 

The effort to update the 2021-2029 Housing Element is required by HCD in response to the 6th Cycle Regional Housing Needs Assessment allocation of 4,845 new housing units assigned to the city.

In the draft Housing Element, the city indicated a potential for 591 affordable units and 1,475 total units on Banning Ranch. 

The primary takeaway from the letter is that HCD is not going to accept the proposed units at Banning Ranch, explained Deputy Community Development Director Jim Campbell.

“So, if we keep it in there and we count it toward satisfying our RHNA, we believe that we will not have a certified Housing Element,” Campbell said. 

The challenge is how the city addresses that issue, he noted. Staff presented two options: Remove Banning Ranch from the inventory entirely and redistribute those units in other housing study areas in the city; or keep Banning Ranch in the inventory as an additional backup option to pursue, but not count it towards the city’s RHNA, and still redistribute those units elsewhere.

“If we can’t count this toward our RHNA, we need to move them elsewhere,” Campbell said. 

Their first thought was to move them to the other housing study areas (Airport area, Coyote Canyon, Newport Center, Dover-Westcliff and West Newport-Mesa) and proportionately distribute them. Under this plan, increases in affordable units would range from an additional 24 in Dover-Westcliff to as many as 228 in the airport area. 

Staff believes they have substantial evidence of the sites to accommodate the small increase for each area, Campbell noted. 

“We feel that this is a prudent approach,” he said. 

Another idea (which the council ultimately supported in a straw vote) is to still redistribute the units, but keep Banning Ranch in the inventory as an option to pursue as a possible back up, just in case they can get any housing opportunity sites approved, but not count it towards RHNA.

“To the extent that we’re successful in getting housing authorized and getting zoning opportunities on Banning Ranch, that would relieve the pressure to do it elsewhere in the community,” Campbell said. “If we fail miserably on getting it in there, then obviously we have sites elsewhere in the community.”

In the old draft the city suggests adding 10,053 total units. By redistributing those units but still keeping Banning Ranch in the plan as a possible option to pursue, the new proposal results in a 11,588 total.

City struggles with Dover Westcliff

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Photo by Sara Hall

Houses in the Dover-Westcliff neighborhood

If they leave the 1,475 units in Banning Ranch and also disperse units across the other sites, the city is essentially over-planning for affordable units, Councilmember Diane Dixon pointed out. 

“Do we get any bonus points for that?” she asked, slightly joking.

“I wish,” replied Community Development Director Seimone Jurjis, “but they just looked at Banning Ranch as a zero and they’re not going to give us any additional credit.”

When they start addressing the overlays to plan for the housing, they can include language that clarifies when they reach the affordable housing thresholds to cease the additional housing beyond that, Jurjis explained.

“We can definitely put some triggers in there, if that’s what the future committees and community would like to see,” he said. 

Including Banning Ranch isn’t violating any law or “sticking a finger in anybody’s eye,” Dixon said.

“We’re just saying, ‘We want to consider this as an additional location for affordable housing. We want to go over and above what we’re required,’” Dixon said. “It’s our city and it’s within our sphere of influence and if we want to put X number of units there or think about planning for them, we can, right? And we’re complying with their draconian orders.”

Both goals of meeting the housing needs and preserving open space are possible, she added.

In a 6-1 straw vote, council majority supported directing staff to keep Banning Ranch in the inventory, but not counting it toward the city’s RHNA. Councilmember Joy Brenner dissented. 

With council’s latest feedback, city staff will revise the Housing Element one more time before returning to council for approval at the February 8 meeting. They will then forward it to HCD “hopefully for the last time,” Jurjis said.

“There’s a high probability that they will not accept it and they’re going to come back with another round of comments,” Jurjis said. “We’re going to do this back and forth until we can get approval from HCD.”

Neither option was ideal and councilmembers expressed frustration of the difficult position the city is in based on state mandates and requirements. 

They’ve been put between a rock and a hard place with Banning Ranch essentially being taken away as a potential option for housing, said Councilmember Will O’Neill. 

“If you want open space: Great, just reduce the housing requirements,” O’Neill said. “If you want the housing requirements: Ok, but then you can’t take away our large, last remaining open space (where we would) be able to put some housing.” 

They’ve been struggling for years on how to navigate the requirements, he said, and they always anticipated they’d be able to use Banning Ranch. They didn’t expect the state to simultaneously mandate a Housing Element with this much required housing while also helping fund the acquisition of Banning Ranch as open space.

“This is a frustrating end to a difficult process,” O’Neill said. “And it might not even be the end if this doesn’t get approved.”

They tried to ask the state for relief on the requirements if the Banning Ranch land was taken away as a potential housing option, Dixon noted. 

“We’re hemmed in by the ocean, by open space, by a wildfire area, by an airport,” she said. “Give us some relief, (but) we all know that there is no relief coming…We want to comply, just help us find the space to do it in.”

As pointed out by city staff, Newport Beach is not the only agency struggling with the HCD’s requirements. 

The city received HCD’s comment letter on January 14, Jurjis said. It’s the city’s second round of comments and is about nine pages long, which is average for most jurisdictions in the Southern California Association of Governments region. 

In the SCAG region there are 197 agencies and only two have been certified so far, Campbell pointed out, and none in Orange County.

“I guess we’re in good company,” he said. “Everyone is struggling to make this work.”

They met with HCD staff, who summarized the points in the comment letters, Campbell said. While HCD does essentially just have a checklist they run through, there is some thought put into it, he added. 

“But they clearly have state law behind them that makes us do what we have to do,” Campbell said. 

“HCD is not a well-oiled machine,” Jurjis added, sometimes what’s said during the meeting is different than the letter officially issued to the city. “So we’re dealing with an agency that is trying to understand their laws and trying to implement their laws, and they’re struggling to do that too.”

Noting that only two plans for agencies in the SCAG area have been approved, Dixon asked what staff has heard from other jurisdictions about possible legal action, challenges, or resistance.

“I think right now everybody feels (they’re all) in the same boat, that this has gotten out of control, this is the impossible task, this is a futile effort,” Jurjis answered. “Those cities that have been through the housing process before (say) it was easier in the past to get certified, everybody is saying is that this is ridiculous.”

City struggles with rooftops

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Photo by Sara Hall

Houses in Newport Beach

Another side to consider is that the state has formed a housing compliance group or task force as the enforcement arm, Jurjis said. In a recent statewide Zoom meeting, they actually talked specifically about Orange County cities, he noted. 

“So Orange County has a target on its back,” Jurjis said. 

Assembly Bill 1398 that states if the city cannot get certified, HCD requires they implement their adopted Housing Element, Jurjis said, “which is impossible for us because we have Greenlight, we can’t do it.” 

It’s unknown what that would mean in regards to the compliance enforcement arm of HCD and potential consequences.

“This is all unchartered territory for us,” Jurjis said. 

The task force will likely start out with a letter campaign of notices of violation and request a plan for compliance, Jurjis predicted. Ultimately, there are fines under state law up to $600,000, he added, but that is not likely to be the first step in the process. The attorney general could also get involved with litigation.

O’Neill struggled with the idea of removing Banning Ranch because, if faced with an enforcement action, he doesn’t want the state to claim they took it out of the inventory “voluntarily.” Even if the council opted to remove it now, it wouldn’t be voluntary, O’Neill pointed out.

“The threat of what we’re looking at, in terms of the enforcement mechanisms, are draconian and aggressive,” he said. “They did it on purpose, which I understand, but at the same time…we can’t realistically take it out and then put ourselves in a binding position down the road.”

They also can’t keep it in and solely rely on it, he added. 

Other councilmembers mentioned that keeping most of Banning Ranch as open space is still possible even with some plans for housing.

Banning Ranch is about 400 acres and this number of housing units would need roughly about 30 to 40 acres, Campbell said. Approximately 10% of the land is all they would need to make this happen, he added. 

That leaves a lot of great park land and, if done correctly and sensitively, a development like that is not going to be detrimental to the public’s enjoyment of that open space, said Councilmember Brad Avery. Housing is not going to completely cover the land, he added. 

“To be held up like this, after all the effort with no compromise whatsoever, is disappointing,” Avery said. 

The housing units taken away from Banning Ranch are going to negatively impact all the other parts of the city with more development and more affordable housing, added Councilmember Joy Brenner. 

She’s not sure everyone advocating for open space fully understood the counter-consequences of removing the potential for housing from the Banning Ranch area.

“We all love the idea of open space,” Brenner said. “But now that we’ve got this mandate (from the state), it’s going to negatively impact our quality of life in the rest of the city.”

Although resident and president of Still Protecting Our Newport, Charles Klobe, noted that the owner of Banning Ranch has no interest in remediating the property for residential development.

“You all have to know that there aren’t going to be homes built on Banning Ranch for the simple reason that the owner is not interested in developing them,” Klobe said. “So placing those there continuing this idea, seems to me to be giving a gesture to the HCD which begs them to come back to us in a harsh way.”

Klobe agreed with staff’s idea of distributing the units to the other focus areas. He also suggested adding a 20% inclusionary policy, so there won’t be a “run on the bank” while it gets figured out.

“That kicks the can down the road and gives us the potential for HCD to approve it, so that we don’t get fined and we don’t get made an example of,” Klobe said. 

Other key highlights from HCD’s comment letter include: Request for additional information about Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, related to trends, patterns and developing an action plan; general comments about the site analysis and whether the city has enough substantial evidence to support all the housing opportunities sites, specifically with concerns regarding Banning Ranch; and clarification, milestones and timing about the city’s Housing Element programs, which will be implemented over the next three years once adopted. 

“There’s a lot of clean-up work to do,” Campbell said. 

They’re fairly subjective, so it’s challenging to understand exactly what HCD is looking for, he said, although it’s very clear to city staff they are not going to accept Banning Ranch. 

~~~~~~~~

Sara Hall covers City Hall and is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

City’s annual planning session is tomorrow…it’s the thing future budgets are made of

Fair Game Toms new headshotTomorrow from 9 a.m. to 12 noon is the City Council Planning Session – Special Meeting, and the community is most certainly welcome and encouraged to participate.

Here ‘s the plan: after roll call and the traditional items (invocation and pledge), the meeting moves into public comments for non-agenda items. Although it’s important for the public to be able to speak, hopefully this piece of business is short, so they can move quickly into the meat of the morning.

That begins with the Update on Financial Status. Here, under the lead of City Manager Grace Leung and Finance Director Scott Catlett, will be an update on the city’s fiscal picture, including challenges faced in the current fiscal year and in developing next year’s budget. 

Next up is Budget Development/Operating Budget. Here, city staff will discuss development of the next year’s recommended budget and priorities. Topics will include an update on pension funding, proper funding levels for long-term infrastructure maintenance and replacement, and service needs including homeless initiatives and staffing strategies. 

Finally, Budget Development/Capital Improvement Program, where city staff will discuss the upcoming capital improvement program; present recommended projects for the surplus and federal funds; and facilitate a discussion on potential neighborhood enhancement projects. 

At the end of the session, City Council and staff should have the makings of budget items to focus on in the coming months. 

There are several ways to be involved: the first being the good old-fashioned way by showing up and sitting in the Council Chambers. However, you can also watch at home via NBTV, either on your computer or through your TV cable company.

• • •

If you’re heading through Corona del Mar in the next couple of months, you might want to add just a little more time for unexpected traffic delays. Construction began earlier this week to rehabilitate the concrete sidewalks, curbs and access ramps on E. Coast Highway and Marguerite Avenue. 

The construction will require temporary, intermittent lane closures at the work locations. “No parking” signs will also be posted at various locations during the project. 

The areas impacted will be E. Coast Highway between MacArthur Boulevard and Newport Coast Drive, and Marguerite Avenue between Bayside Drive and 5th Avenue.

The improvements are expected to be completed by the end of March and will then be followed in April by street repaving, which will be completed by the end of May. 

 Questions should be directed to Ben Davis at 949.644.3317 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Andy Tran at 949.644.3315 at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., both from the city’s Public Works Department.

• • •

We’re approaching the deadline (Monday) for financial disclosure statements to be filed by political candidates raising money seeking an upcoming elected office. It’s that kickoff of the year that really gives us our first look at who’s serious and maybe who isn’t.

One statement came across my desk early from Robyn Grant, who’s definitely “in it to win it” as the saying goes. Robyn’s announcing that she’s already raised more than $60,000, but perhaps even more important is her impressive list of local endorsements. 

We’ll take a look next week into everyone who’s running and see where they stand.

B-t-w, Robyn to this point is unopposed, but that’s something that’s also subject to change.

• • •

Granted, this next item is still two months out and planned at the Hyatt Regency John Wayne Airport Newport Beach on Thursday, March 31, from 7:17-9 a.m. The event is the 49th Annual Police Appreciation Breakfast.

But, but, but…besides our wonderful men and women in blue whom we celebrate that morning, what makes this event even more special is that Keith Morrison, from the TV newsmagazine Dateline, is the guest emcee. Keith is a Newport Beach resident and possesses that unmistakable voice that brings crime stories alive into our living rooms each week on NBC.

Morrison will join in the honoring of the Officer of the Year, Reserve Officer of the Year, Civilian of the Year, Supervisor of the Year and Volunteer of the Year.

Tickets and sponsorships are available now.

• • •

Then, there’s the 40th Annual Mayor’s Dinner that has announced a new date. Speak Up Newport, the host organization, postponed the previous dinner date scheduled for February because of Omicron issues and now has selected May 19 at the new VEA Newport Beach as the replacement date.

The dinner will feature Mayor Kevin Muldoon, who will offer his State of the City, and be emceed by KCAL 9 and KCBS 2 Orange County reporter and Newport Beach resident Michele Gile.

Another enjoyable feature of the evening is the gathering and presentation of the past mayors. Always good for another picture or two.

To purchase tickets, go here.

• • •

If you’ve never been to the Super Bowl, this just could be the year. Sure, it’s gonna cost you, but you have a shot.

First things first, the game will be played in Inglewood at SoFi Stadium on Sunday, Feb. 13. If you’re a Rams fan, they could be there…if you like the 49ers, it might be them.

Here’s how the opportunity works. The Hoag Foundation is offering two packages at auction. Yup, I told you it might cost you, after all, they raise funds! 

The first package includes four tickets and a $500 Visa gift card to be used at the game and includes ground transportation to and from the game. Face value…gulp…$21,700.

Package 2 includes two tickets, a $250 Visa gift card and also covers ground transportation. Face value on this one is $11,450. 

Just be prepared, bids already exceed that second amount.

Check it out.

• • •

Speaking of auctions, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce through its Christmas Boat Parade Dinner & Auction puts together one of this community’s best annual auctions.

Unfortunately, this year Omicron canceled the dinner, but the auction is about to go live online for all to enjoy. You have until this Monday, Jan. 31 to donate and get your company name, and perhaps your product, involved.

Donations can be a lot of things, including tickets to events, rounds of golf, dinner, wine, etc., etc. But, be creative, and do something to get your company noticed.

Then when the Chamber goes live, you’ll have the chance to be center stage. And besides, any money raised supports the efforts of the chamber in hosting the annual Christmas Boat Parade.

Donate here.

• • •

And finally, sometimes we get frustrated or angry and perhaps feel like hitting someone or something. Fortunately, we don’t do that!

Who does, however, are the fighters in Roy Englebrecht’s Fight Club OC who hosts their next card of fights on Thursday, Feb. 17 in The Hangar at the OC Fair & Event Center.

Roy’s February event, the kickoff to his 13th season, is a seven-bout card, featuring a mix of MMA and boxing.

As Roy says, “It’s the most fun you can have on a Thursday Night in Orange County.”

For ticket information, go to www.socafights.com.


Mirror finish

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Photo by Stan Sievers (Instagram @stansievers)

The outgoing tide leaves a mirror-like finish across the sand


Reflecting on a good time

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Photo by Stacia Stabler 

As the setting sun reflects off a distant bay residence, boaters enjoy their final hours on the water


COVID-19: 465 new cases and one new death reported in Newport Beach this past week

Stu News Newport is reporting COVID-19 numbers on a weekly basis, as reported by the OC Health Care Agency.

This week, January 19-25, there have been 465 new cases in Newport Beach and one new death, bringing the overall totals to 8,820 cases reported to date and 111 deaths. 

During the past week, the county reported a total of 43,604 new cases, raising the total to 498,918 to date. The death totals for the county were 40 for the week, bringing the overall total number of deaths to 5,978.

As of Tuesday, Jan. 25, Orange County has performed a cumulative of 6,903,923 tests to date. There are 1,114 current cases of hospitalized patients in Orange County, of which 191 are in ICU.

For questions about the data presented by the county, call 714.834.2000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To view the county’s data dashboard, click here.

COVID-19 numbers are updated weekly by Stu News Newport in Friday’s edition. 

SNN COVID 19 1 28 22 1

SNN COVID 19 1 28 22 2

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Data courtesy of OC Health Care Agency


Passenger counts finally back, exceed pre-COVID times in 2019

Airline passenger traffic at John Wayne Airport (JWA) increased in November 2021 as compared to November 2020. In November 2021, JWA served 854,393 passengers, an increase of 208.4% when compared with the November 2020 passenger traffic count of 277,020 and an increase of 3.3% when compared to November 2019 of 827,140 passengers.

Commercial aircraft operations increased 98.5% and commuter aircraft operations decreased 8.7% when compared with November 2020 levels. Comparing November 2021 to 2019 levels, commercial aircraft operations of 7,244 increased 1.6% and commuter aircraft operations of 504 increased 9.1%.

Passenger counts jets

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 Courtesy of JWA

Total aircraft operations increased in November 2021 as compared with the same month in 2020. In November 2021, there were 24,643 total aircraft operations (take-offs and landings), a 29.1% increase compared to 19,088 total aircraft operations in November 2020 and increased 11.9% compared to November 2019 of 22,014 total aircraft operations.

General aviation activity, which accounted for 68.4% of the total aircraft operations during November 2021, increased 13.3% when compared with November 2020, and increased 17.5% when compared to general aviation activity of 14,342 in November 2019, which accounted for 65.1% of total aircraft operations.

The top three airlines in November 2021 based on passenger count were Southwest Airlines (317,679), American Airlines (137,651) and United Airlines (120,418).


Windswept wave

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Photo by Stan Sievers (Instagram @stansievers)

Recent Santa Ana winds created this mist off the top of an incoming wave


Segerstrom Center for the Arts names Dr. Natalie Graham, vp of community engagement

Segerstrom Center for the Arts has announced Dr. Natalie Graham has been appointed as vice president of Community Engagement for the Center, effective January 31. In her new role, Dr. Graham will advance the vision and reach of Community Engagement’s current programs including the expansion of Studio D’s inclusive arts curriculum; introducing new artistic and cultural programming at the Center, including Julianne and George Argyros Plaza and throughout Orange County and strengthening community partnerships. She will be a key member of the Center’s senior leadership and will lead a team that includes three full-time employees and 15 Studio D faculty members. 

Segerstrom Center names Dr. Graham

Courtesy of scfta.org

Dr. Natalie Graham

Dr. Graham comes to Segerstrom after an accomplished tenure as a faculty member in the Department of African American Studies at California State University, Fullerton where she served as chair of the department and co-founded the Institute of Black Intellectual Innovation. She worked with the Center’s Community Engagement department as artistic curator and consultant for “Freedom in Full Bloom: A Juneteenth Celebration,” the Center’s first Juneteenth Celebration (June 2021). Her work on the project included curating a Friday evening outdoor performance with J.Mike and Friends as part of the Center’s new Summer Sounds concert series, and a full day of activities on the Plaza on June 19, 2021 including African dance and drumming, poetry and gardening activities. Additionally, through KayJo Creatives, the artistic event planning and management company she co-founded, Dr. Graham led art activities for the Rock, Paper, Scissors: 80s! event on the Plaza in October 2021. She is currently working with the Community Engagement team on a series of performances and discussion for Black History Month. 

“I first met Natalie when she worked with the Center and our Community Engagement team to create the first ever Juneteenth celebration at the Center. I was blown away by her passion, intelligence and commitment to the work and our mission. She immediately created excitement and trust with our current fantastic staff and, specifically, community engagement team. She has incredible taste and an innate sense of how the Center can positively impact our home in Orange County. She will achieve this not only by expanding our reach but by using the arts to touch the hearts and create meaningful dialogue with those who are new as well as those already familiar with the Center. On top of all that, she is warm, kind and very funny. I look forward to working with her,” said Casey Reitz, Center president.

Dr. Graham’s role at Segerstrom Center for the Arts will be pivotal in ensuring the Center implements new artistic initiatives and strengthens its relationships with local communities. As a leading cultural organization, the Center’s active engagement in Orange County is essential to the continued relevance of its artistic and educational programs. 

“I am thrilled to be joining such a dynamic team that is committed to engaging our rich and diverse communities,” said Dr. Graham. “I look forward to amplifying voices that haven’t been heard and creating new space for the songs yet to be sung. The arts allow us to be mesmerized and transported, but they also allow new ways of seeing and transforming the communities we live in. This is the beauty and power at the core of the arts. We inspire one another with our performances and create space for those around us to dream a bit deeper and wider.”


School Notes

Visitors and volunteers remain out of schools until end of month

Despite hopes that the COVID-19 surge would subside, it continues to impact Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSF) employees and district operations. Because of this, the temporary suspension of visitors and volunteers to NMUSD campuses will continue until January 31. 

NMUSD and many other school districts throughout the nation, continue to work through the current COVID-19 surge. Although this has impacted local operations, NMUSD officials are confident that they continue offering quality in-person instruction to students. 

In anticipation of volunteers resuming on campus on January 31, volunteers may begin to apply through the Raptor system. Those who have already been approved as a volunteer this school year will NOT need to reapply. Please visit the Volunteer Webpage for additional information.

Board to study middle school electives this afternoon

This evening (Jan. 25), NMUSD will conduct a Board of Education Study Session from 3:30-6 p.m. to discuss middle school electives. As part of the board and district priorities of improving academic achievement and expansion of learning opportunities, the board will work with district leadership and site principals to review middle school course and elective offerings. 

Over time, the board has received input from members of the community and has continued to welcome feedback from parents, students and staff in advance of this study session. 

As COVID case numbers decline, they will be scheduling parent meetings at school sites to provide further opportunities for feedback on this topic in each zone. 

If you have a specific concern or recommendation related to the middle school electives or programs, you may reach out to Superintendent Wesley Smith at any time.


Missing our Golden Girl

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Photo by Chris Crosson (Instagram @thesandcastlekit) 

This remembrance of the beloved Betty White was created on the shore of Balboa Island


Community-focused paid summer internships available for high school juniors, seniors

 Civic-minded Orange County teens can apply now through January 28 for Bank of America’s 2022 Student Leaders program, which places high school juniors and seniors in paid summer internships at an Orange County nonprofit. 

Since 2004, Bank of America has selected 300 students each year to participate in the nationwide program. The young adults are paired with local organizations to work on special projects and learn firsthand how to collaborate and support community-driven goals.

Student Leaders is part of Bank of America’s investment in education and workforce development for high schoolers to gain job and leadership experience while making a difference in their communities.

Students who are interested can apply at www.bankofamerica.com/studentleaders.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Walter Stahr adds to his Lincoln Club message voiced against Elect Our Mayor

Fair Game Toms new headshotThe Elect Our Mayor charter amendment appears to be the biggest issue in Newport Beach politics, perhaps ever. The attempt to advance the amendment was in the midst of a somewhat difficult signature gathering effort when the City Council took it upon themselves last October to circumvent the process and vote 4-3 to just put it on the June ballot for local voters to decide.

All along the way the issue has been controversial. Some say it’s the solution to a problem that never was. Others say it gives Newport Beach voters the opportunity to directly elect their mayor, a process presently handled by the fellow councilmembers, and gives that someone, in essence, the power to control local agendas and to push back on state and federal government mandates. 

The naysayers say it’s potentially too much power, for too long a period of time for one candidate.

If the amendment passes, Newport Beach would elect their mayor in 2024 to a term of four years, with the possibility of another term four years later.

Last issue I wrote about charter amendment author/City Councilman Will O’Neill having his efforts rejected by the Lincoln Club; first by their Legislative Committee, then their Executive Committee and finally by their Board of Directors.

As O’Neill made the case for why it should be adopted, Newport Beach resident Walter Stahr made the case against.

I pointed out that Stahr’s major concern was that the system could allow for an unwanted candidate to possibly sneak in and grab the office, particularly if a number of candidates ran, thus watering down the number of votes needed to win.

Stahr wrote me this week correcting my comment:

“Thanks for mentioning the charter change in your latest issue. Will O’Neill and I did discuss the question at the Lincoln Club, but I would not say that my “main” point was that it might result in the election of a liberal mayor.

“My main concern is that the charter change would give too much power to the mayor. The mayor would be elected for at least a four-year term, perhaps elected for a second such term. The mayor would have essentially complete control over the city council agenda. The city staff would answer to the mayor, not, as at present, to the whole city council. Within the city, the mayor would be more powerful than any other mayor in Orange County.

“The charter change would essentially gut the term limit system in Newport Beach. One person could serve eight years on the city council and then another eight years as mayor. Sixteen years is too long for one person to be in power.

“I am not opposed to democracy: far from it. But the present Newport Beach system, in which the mayor is selected from among the councilmembers, by the councilmembers, for one year, works well. The present system is similar to that of many other cities and governments, such as the county itself, where the supervisors choose their chair. There is no problem that needs to be fixed by this ill-advised change.

“I disagree with Mr. O’Neill’s suggestion that the Lincoln Club was wasting its time in considering this issue. This is the most important change in decades to the structure of our city government. So, it was right for the Lincoln Club to consider this issue, and I am glad they agree that this charter change does not make any sense.”

It was signed by Walter Stahr.

And, you might be asking yourself, well who is Walter Stahr?

Good question, he’s a graduate of Stanford University, then Harvard Law School, a multi-decade lawyer and an accomplished author of biographies on American leaders, including John Jay, William Henry Seward and Edwin Stanton.

Thus, we find ourselves in an extremely interesting time in Newport Beach politics, including issues other than Elect Our Mayor. For example, there still seems to be a strong concern over the remaining remnants of Team Newport enforcing their politics with little regard for the citizen’s voice.

Obviously, the election of Noah Blom to Mayor Pro Tem would seem to fit this bill. Now there’s a lingering concern of an unsubstantiated ploy to alter councilmanic district boundaries as they’re finalized, that could potentially force a previously announced candidate to the sidelines and that would take a base of supporters away from another sitting councilperson.

That last issue will play out over the course of the next month as council will discuss those district boundaries and the associated ma