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 Volume 10, Issue 85  |  October 23, 2018                               


Police Files

Resident reports theft of No on P signs by man in Bentley

On Friday, Oct 19, at 10:31 a.m., LBPD officers responded in reference to a reported theft of political signs. 

“The reporting party observed the suspect taking the signs from in front of Ruby’s Diner and leaving in a black Bentley. The suspect was located in the 600 block of North Coast Highway in the black Bentley with several “No on P” signs in the rear passenger seat of his vehicle,” LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota said. 

The signs were returned and a police report was taken. No arrests were made although the reporting parties indicated they would be seeking further action.

Police Files Signs

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Submitted photo

LBPD responds to resident’s report of No on P signs allegedly stolen in South Laguna

“LBPD has sent the report to the District Attorney’s Office in Newport Beach. They will review the report and determine whether or not charges will be filed based on the circumstances of the incident,” said Sgt Cota.

Jennifer Zeiter, founder of STOP (Stop Taxing our Property) and organizer of the No on P campaign said, “I filed the form of complaint because I am the victim. STOP is the one who paid for the signs and I am with STOP.”

Zeiter, who received the police report on Monday, further stated, “Our concern is that we made multiple requests for a copy of the police report [over the weekend] and the identity of the [alleged] thief and we were denied it each and every time. We missed a critical window to investigate the suspect further.”

The suspect was described as a white male, 35 to 40 years old, wearing a light colored dress shirt and slacks. 

The Bentley is reportedly not registered in the suspect’s name.

Editor’s Note: Stu News Laguna has elected as a matter of policy not to run the suspect’s name until (if) charges are announced by the OCDA.

Rollover accident downs wires in the Canyon

On Monday, Oct 22, at 12:42 a.m., at the 1900 block of Laguna Canyon Road, LBPD and LBFD personnel responded to the 1900 block of Laguna Canyon Road for the report of a rollover traffic collision. 

According to Sgt Cota, “Emergency personnel arrived and found that a Toyota Prius had struck and severed a Frontier utility pole on the inbound side of Laguna Canyon Road.” 

The driver, a 45-year-old Laguna Beach resident, sustained a cut to her hand but declined transport to the hospital. Alcohol was not a factor in the collision. 

Police Files Rollover accident

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Courtesy of LBPD

Rollover accident on Laguna Canyon Road downs wires and makes a mess of traffic

“The severed utility pole was suspended by its overhanging wires, but some of the wires ended up hanging low over Laguna Canyon Road,” Sgt Cota said. “The height of the wires did not impede regular traffic, but tall vehicles such as big rigs would have to move to the outbound lane to traverse under the obstacle.”

 LBPD and LBFD were working with Frontier to get a new pole installed last night, according to Sgt Cota.

 LBPD sent out several Nixle alerts following the collision. The first alert was sent at 1:36 a.m., warning that traffic would be closed in both directions until further notice. At 5:11 a.m., a second alert read, “still closed in both directions until further notice, “due to an accident resulting in low hanging wires.” At 9:24 a.m., LBPD sent out a third alert, “expect heavy delays in both directions for the next four to six hours. Use alternate route if possible.” At 2:30 p.m., LBPD sent out a final alert reporting that the pole repair was complete and all lanes were opened.

Bicyclist busted with baggies of meth allegedly for sale

Police Files Robert CaltabianoOn Friday, Oct 19, at 12:55 a.m., an LBPD officer stopped a bicyclist in the 1700 block of Laguna Canyon Road with no front light and rear red reflectors. The bicyclist, homeless resident Robert Caltabiano, had an outstanding $5,000 warrant for his arrest.

“A search incident to arrest led to five individually packaged baggies of methamphetamine inside a small zipper bag,” Sgt Cota said. “The charges of possession of a controlled substance for sales and transportation of controlled substance for sales were added.”

Robert Lenn Caltabiano, 46, of Laguna Beach, was arrested and booked at the Laguna Beach Police Department. 

Bail was set at $25,000.

Hundreds turn out for SchoolPower’s Dodgeball IX, making tournament a hit for Laguna Beach schools

More than 420 costumed players on 55 teams ducked, dived and dodged balls at Laguna Beach High School on Wednesday, Oct 17 for SchoolPower’s 9th annual Dodgeball Tournament. The popular event raised over $13,000 for SchoolPower, the parent volunteer-based, nonprofit education foundation that has raised money for Laguna Beach public schools since 1981. 

Hundreds turn Sybirski

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Photo by Kristin Karkoska, Blue Sky’s Studio

Becker Sybirski, 6th grade, of the Holi-dodgers team cheers from the sidelines 

 “It’s all about the comradery, the community and having fun!” explains Felix Yan, coach of the Average Joes. The popular event included students from all four local schools, teachers and school staff, Laguna Beach lifeguards, and local business supporters. Adding to the energy were Dodgeball chairs Kristine Flynn and Rob Alshuler, hundreds of parent coaches, volunteer referees, and cheering spectators. 

Hundreds turn board members

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Photo by Monica Golden

SchoolPower executive board members and event chairs Kristine Flynn and Rob Alshuler pose in the gym during SchoolPower’s Dodgeball Tournament 

Competition was fierce in all three divisions, and agility and a strong arm were key. Seventh grader Jacob Cruz of Ocean’s 7 was not deterred by his team’s loss in the quarter-finals, “I like the adrenaline rush. We did better than I thought we would. I’d do it again next year.”

Hundreds turn Steris

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Photo by Kristin Karkoska, Blue Sky’s Studio

Ava Steris, 6th grade, of the Brooks Street Dodgers team makes a catch

Cruz’s enthusiasm is echoed by many long-time participants. “It has become a tradition for our team. We play because first for the cause and second, because it is just so much fun,” says Yan. 

Billy Brown, coach of winning team Lil’ Slunks, is a passionate supporter. “I have played in the past, refereed for six years, and this was my first year coaching. This was a dynasty team that I got to take over.” 

Hundreds turn Samson

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Photo by Kristin Karkoska, Blue Sky’s Studio

Jeremy Samson, parent coach of the Laguna Greeter Groms, and his team cheer on teammates

The following teams dodged their way to victory.

Division Winners: 4th/5th – The Kooks, 6th-8th – Lil’ Slunks, HS/Adult – PrescribeWellness

 Best Costume Winners: 4th/5th – Space Unicorns, 6th-8th – Holi-dodgers, HS/Adult – Rhythm Ride or Die

Hundreds turn Lil Slunks

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Photo by Elaine Brashier

6th-8th Grade Division champions Lil’ Slunks celebrate their win 

 Champions from each division won $500 in prize money to designate to a teacher or school program of their choice. Local Radio Station KX 93.5 broadcasted play-by-play coverage of the tournament, and Nick Alexander Imports served as the Terminator Sponsor. 

Hundreds turn KX 93.5

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Photo by Elaine Brashier

Tournament winners from the PrescribeWellness team are interviewed live on the radio with KX 93.5’s Tim Becwar at the conclusion of SchoolPower’s Dodgeball Tournament

SchoolPower’s mission is to enhance the educational experience of the whole student as they grow from TK through 12th grade. In 2017-18, SchoolPower contributed over $760,000 to Laguna Beach school district to help support a wide range of programs, including small class sizes, academics, athletics, visual and performing arts, music, STEM programs, and wellness and student support. 

SchoolPower’s Wave of Giving campaign is on now at

For more details about Dodgeball, visit

LBHS Boys Varsity Water Polo captured weekend tournament

Story by Will Clark

Photos by Stacie Capobianco

Over the weekend, the LBHS Boys Varsity Water Polo team captured the Steve Pal Memorial Tournament title for the second consecutive year. After victories against Malibu, Clovis North, Beckman, and Palos Verdes, the Breakers faced off against Northwood High School of Irvine in the finals.

LBHS Boys Varsity ball

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Will Clark sets up the play

Northwood jumped out to an early one-goal lead in the first quarter. Thanks to solid team defense and 13 saves from junior goalie Caden Capobianco, Northwood would only manage to find the back of the net three more times in the remainder of the match. Senior co-captains Colton Gregory and Will Clark paced the breakers with three goals apiece, followed by two goals from freshman Logan McCarroll.

LBHS Boys Varsity team

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The winning team

The Breakers (17-10) will look to follow up their tournament victory with a win against Huntington Beach (13-11) this Wednesday at the Corona del Mar Swimming Pool in their final regular season game of the year.

Bill Gross announces charity recipients to include Laguna Beach nonprofits

Following the $10 million sale of a portion of Bill Gross’s United States stamp collection on October 3, Gross announced that in addition to donating $1 million each to Doctors Without Borders USA and The New York Times Neediest Cases Fund, he will also match a $200,000 donation by Bank of America to Laguna Beach’s Friendship Shelter.

Gross, a long-time resident and supporter of Laguna Beach, said he will also donate $50,000 to the Laguna Beach Community Clinic, and $25,000 each to the Laguna Beach Senior Center, Laguna Beach Pantry, Laguna Beach Boys & Girls Club, and Sally’s Fund.

Bill Gross announces computer

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Bill Gross is matching a $200k donation to Laguna’s Friendship Shelter

Gross is the largest donor in history to Doctors Without Borders USA, with donations totaling approximately $33 million, including this contribution. The Friendship Shelter provides year-round shelter and rehabilitation to homeless adults.

“It’s thrilling to see how much good the proceeds from the stamp auctions have done over the years for the people served by nonprofits around the world,” said Gross, who has previously donated to several charities benefiting the homeless.

Gross will announce other nonprofit recipients to receive the remainder of the stamp sale proceeds following consultations with his children, with a priority on donations to Southern California organizations either directly or through the Gross Family Charitable Foundation.

What remains of Gross’s collection is the heart of it – the United States stamps and stamps on envelopes (known as “covers” by collectors). Beginning with the first sale of “United States Stamp Treasures” on October 3, all of Gross’s decades of collecting will ultimately be returned to the market through 2019.

Bill Gross announces stamp

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One of two recorded Annapolis, Maryland, postmaster’s provisional stamped envelopes (Realized $390,000, $460,200 with premium)

 “What is especially impressive is that the recent record-breaking October 3rd auction is just the tip of the iceberg of Bill’s United States Collection – the most valuable United States stamp collection ever formed,” said Charles Shreve. Valued previously at more than $40 million, Gross’s collection contains more iconic philatelic (stamp-related) rarities than any other collection, according to Shreve.

Following the successful October 3rd auction will be an additional four auctions in 2019 by the New York based Robert A. Siegel Auction firm, all featuring additional items from the Gross collection with proceeds continuing to be donated to charity.

Bill Gross is the Lead Portfolio Manager responsible for managing the Janus Global Unconstrained Bond strategy, and all related portfolios, and is a member of the Janus Global Macro Fixed Income leadership team. He is based in Newport Beach. Gross co-founded PIMCO in 1971 and served as managing director and Chief Investment Officer until joining Janus in 2014. 

For stamp questions, visit or call (214) 754-5991. For questions about the Gross Family Charitable Foundation, contact Mark Porterfield at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


David French 

November 25, 1942 - October 5, 2018

David French closeup

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David French, designer craftsman specializing in exotic hardwoods and 27-year veteran of the Festival of Arts of Laguna Beach, passed away peacefully at his home in Mission Viejo, CA on Friday, October 5, 2018. David is survived by his wife of 38 years, Denise French, and 34-year-old son, Drew French, along with Drew’s wife, Kelly, and his 3-month-old granddaughter, Brooke.

David was lot of things to a lot of people, but to all who knew him, he was hilariously funny, lacking any and all filters, oftentimes offensive and blunt, but always honest and unabashedly himself. He was the lifelong soulmate of his wife, whom he loved more than any human being could possibly love another. To his son, he was the most dedicated, engaged, and proud father for which any child could hope. To all, he was the one person that could manage to offend every single individual at a party throughout the course of an evening, but walk away more loved because of it.

David French woodworking

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Early in his career

David was born on November 25, 1942 in Bell, CA, where he was raised by his loving parents, Dudley Lynn French and Edith French, as the eldest son of four children – Dan French (brother), Don French (brother), and Dorrene French (sister). After his service in the United States Army, David moved from Bell to San Clemente, CA in the late ‘60s, where he began his 30+ year career as an artist.

David first entered the Festival of Arts of Laguna Beach as an exhibitor in 1979 at the age of 36. David’s self-stated approach to his work was straightforward:

“Does form follow function, or function follow form? Ninety percent of the time in my work, there is a function that must be fulfilled. The challenge is to put a new form on it. My life/design philosophy equates to simplicity – clean lines, simple shapes, beautiful materials.”

David French cabinet

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Underpinning this philosophy, however, was David’s iconoclastic impulse to shed light on the absurdity of what he saw as pretension in the art world, and to turn one’s eye from the self-celebrating to the self-deprecating. His approach to his art was the same as his approach to his personal life: keep things honest, simple, and irreverent.

Local artists – such as Dan Skaggs, David’s friend since kindergarten and long-time exhibitor in the Festival of Arts – would be the first to tell you that while his stated artistic focus was on exotic hardwood, irreverence was his true medium.

For example, For My Lady was one of David’s iconic pieces that he would display annually at the Festival of Arts. Masterfully cut from several different exotic hardwoods, his sculpture was designed to capture the beauty of femininity in the most minimalistic and pure form of the Madonna. Clean. Simple. Beautiful.

At least on the surface.

David French My Lady

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For My Lady sculpture

Housed inside of For My Lady was a sex toy – a vibrator that David would leave constantly running in veritable silence – expressly designed to cause people to jump back in surprise when they touched his artwork…a pet peeve of his.

This was his version of Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain. To him, celebrating an idealistic form of perfection was idolatry, and his way of challenging this modality was to recreate it in its most honest, pure form…then, quite literally, insert something primal to break it down to its unglorified, undeified – yet still beautiful – human form. Frankly, he wanted it to piss you off. Then he wanted you to think about why.

“People are too damned serious,” he would say. 

Irreverence was indeed his true medium.

David French permanent display

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Permanent cabinet on display at Festival of Arts

While he designed several enduring pieces for Road & Track magazine, custom items for San Juan Hills Golf Course, and has a cabinet on display in the permanent collection of the Festival of Arts, his most important contribution to the artist community of Laguna Beach was not his work, but rather his approach to the artistic process, his infectious humor, and his raw honesty. This is what made him such a strong presence at the Festival of Arts, and what made him so loved amongst his peers, friends, and family.

His was a love for life and a passion for laughter that will be sorely missed in the art community here in Laguna Beach. No one will ever be able to replace him, but his spirit will live on in the memories of those who loved him.

Author…Drew French

Lumberyard celebrates 10 Years this Thursday

Story and photos by DIANE ARMITAGE

On the heels of its little sister’s successful one-year anniversary last Friday (Slice Pizza and Beer), big sister Lumberyard is celebrating her 10th anniversary this Thursday, Oct 25.

To celebrate the milestone, Lumberyard is offering specials throughout the day, including a throwback return of the $10 lunch menu, special menu items throughout the day, live music, and drawings for gift cards. But that’s not why we all really need to be there. 

This is a family celebration, really. 

A Commitment to a Laguna Restaurant is a Real Commitment

Eleven years ago, Corona del Mar Restaurateur Redfearn was better known for his popular Oysters restaurant and bar. He and his wife, Suzanne, lived in Laguna Beach, though, and were ready to make that “all-in” Laguna commitment. 

This commitment for Laguna restaurateurs means crazy, hair-on-fire business three to four months of the year, depending on the weather. Beyond that, it’s exactly two spikes in business during the winter months (four weeks at the holidays and three days over President’s Holiday weekend), and a sleepy, up-and-down kind of business the remaining months of the year. 

Despite a litany of memorable tales and delays in the conversion from the vaunted Cedar Creek Inn to the new-kid-in-town Lumberyard, the Redfearns made it happen.

Lumberyard celebrates building

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10 years ago, Lumberyard joined Laguna’s family of restaurants
New Kid In Town

Initially, locals who mourned the passing of Cedar Creek took their time getting to know the new place. People worried that the City was losing its “family feel” and that the holidays would never be the same again without the usual Cedar Creek holiday décor around the old bar and fireplace. 

It was only a matter of time, though, before Lumberyard become the Laguna Playhouse go-to, one of the biggest Hospitality Night holiday gathering parties (which always feels like an amped up happy mosh pit), the annual School Power contest of amateur chefs and – perhaps, most important of all – the waiting arena as nervous folks await their scheduled time at the City Hall City Council meeting. (To help steel their nerves, Cary created a “City Hall” martini for patrons destined for the podium.)

Enthusiasm + Curiosity

Over my 10 years of covering restaurants in this town, I’ve gone from wondering how I’ll ever talk to Cary (he seemed formidable initially) to greeting him with a hearty handshake and yapping endlessly about restaurant concepts, new ideas and menu items that he and Chef Armando Ortega are always plugging into the works. (In fact, they’re tweaking the menus again in early November to reflect a larger number of healthy food items.)

Lumberyard celebrates burger

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The Lumberyard Signature Burger is a perennial best seller

This guy always has new ideas. He was bitten by the restaurateur bug in his early 20s and, rather than try to shake it off, he’s embraced it with enthusiasm and endless curiosity. 

Cary has become my go-to for restaurants to try anywhere in the L.A. basin, but – 

frankly – he’s become my go-to when it all seems overwhelming, and I just need a familiar face and place to make it right again. (Nothing better than the incomparable Crabcake Salad to put your world neatly back in place, just sayin’.) 

Congratulations, Cary and Suzanne. And thanks for becoming part of our Laguna family. 

Diane Armitage is the best-selling author of the book, The Best of Laguna Beach, and offers a cornucopia of Laguna based reviews, finds and upcoming events at her blog,

Where’s Maggi – the answers!

Is this a mural found in Mexico? No! It’s in South Laguna. 

Maggi asked, where? Several readers have indeed spied this painting on Coast Hwy, on the side of Coyote Grill. 

First with the correct answer was Traci Bowman. Coyote Grill is one of her favorite places, so she’s seen it often. Regina Hartley got it too, as did Cathy Bosko, and Bernadette Mesinas.

Thanks for knowing Maggi’s whereabouts. There will be another photo mystery coming up on Friday. Stay tuned.

Wheres Maggi 10 23 18

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A Mexican scene painted on the side of Coyote Grill 

Art Walk meets Day of the Dead at AG Vision

Adriana Guzman of AG Vision is proud to present a celebration of her culture, heritage and history for Day of the Dead (“Día de los Muertos”), which begins sundown on Wednesday, Oct 31 and ends sundown Friday, Nov 2. It is a very special day for Mexicans all over the world. 

Art Walk meets Adriana

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

“It brings us great joy to celebrate our first year of Day of the Dead here in Laguna Beach at AG Vision Gallery,” says AG Vision owner Adriana Guzman

Those who have yet to experience the celebration may be confused in thinking it is intended to be scary or morbid but in fact it’s quite the opposite. Day of the Dead is actually about the life of all of those who have passed. It’s filled with color, music, painting, dancing, offerings of wonderful food and drinks, plenty of flowers, and pictures of families.

Art Walk meets store

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

AG Vision celebrates Day of the Dead on October 31 during Art Walk

From October 31 through November 2, it is said that family members who have passed can come to visit their families, drink with them, eat and dance with them but you must create an alter, have an offering (“ofrenda”), and a picture as well as the traditional flowers known as Marigolds or (“Cempasúchil”). 

It’s a celebration that makes a graveyard a lively and family oriented place where you may hear stories or jokes and maybe even learn about your grandparents or great grandparents. 

AG Vision is located at 572 South Coast Hwy.

Local author Barbara Odanaka’s new children’s book Construction Cat published this month

Barbara Odanaka, a 20-year Laguna Beach resident and children’s book author, just had her latest project, Construction Cat, published this month by Simon & Schuster’s Margaret K. McElderry imprint. Her first children’s book Smash! Mash! Crash! There Goes the Trash! was released in 2006, followed by Skateboard Mom, and A Crazy Day at Critter Café

Odanaka is doing a children’s story time on the morning of Tuesday, Nov 27 at the Laguna Beach Library. She will be reading her books and also selling/signing them. 

Not only is Odanaka a children’s book author, she’s also a skateboarder, and founder of Skateboard Moms & Sisters of Shred, a nonprofit organization empowering women through skateboarding. Before she wrote for children, she was a sports reporter at the Los Angeles Times. She says, “I decided to switch careers after I discovered I was (unintentionally) rhyming some of the lines in my newspaper articles.” 

Construction Cat is a tale of a hardworking Mama Cat who runs the construction site…while Pa Cat stays home to mind the kittens. The book, illustrated by artist Sydney Hanson, has gotten only positive reviews thus far, including a nice one from Kirkus Reviews. Amazon dubbed it an Editor’s Choice for October, and Common Sense Media (a popular nonprofit review site for parents) recommended it with high praise.

Local author bookcover

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Odanaka will be reading her books at LB Library on November 27

An excerpt from Common Sense Media: “This simple, upbeat story about a working mom who gets the job done offers a matter-of-fact representation of a female in a job often thought of as one for males. Construction Cat also models a dad who takes care of the home and kids. It does this all naturally, never in a heavy-handed way, aided by bouncy rhyming text and appealing digital cartoon art.” 

When asked how this idea came to her, Odanaka responds, “As with most of my books, the inspiration popped into my head during my morning hike. There’s something about the rhythm of walking – and being outdoors, away from screens! – that sparks my creativity. A phrase or line pops into my head, and I slowly start turning it over in my brain, seeing where it’ll go from there. With this particular book, the opening lines (“Construction Cat wakes up at dawn, grabs her boots and tugs them on…”) popped into my head as I was headed down the trail. I am a lover of cats, so the cat aspect wasn’t a stretch, but visualizing a cat in work boots and a hardhat gave me a little tingle. And, like a lot of writers, when I feel that tingle, that spark, I know I’m probably onto something. More phrases and images started coming to me and, by the end of my walk, I was repeating the lines over and over so I wouldn’t forget.

Local author hardhat

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Photo by Ken Hada

Barbara Odanaka at A Whale Of A Tale Bookstore in Irvine

“But I’m not one of those writers who typically knows from the beginning how her book will end. I figured Construction Cat would go through a day of building – a popular theme with many children – but it wasn’t until a little later that I realized I was also creating a story about a working mother and a stay-at-home dad who minds the kittens. I like to turn stereotypes on their heads, something I did with my first book, Skateboard Mom. So having my main character be not only a female construction worker but a boss as well seemed a good idea, and a timely one, too. There’s a happy trend in children’s books now to provide girls with strong role models and to show boys that women are equally capable as men. I’m glad to contribute to that in some small way.”

Odanaka says, “As a youngster, I adored books, especially those by Dr. Seuss and Roald Dahl. I also loved creating stories and poems for my parents and siblings. These days, I consider it a great privilege to be able to create fun, playful books for all ages. Like many writers, I’ve long been fascinated by words – just like my dear mother, Dorothy, who was the family whiz at Scrabble

“As an author, I tell children that there is nothing so rewarding as a good tale told well. Whether you read it, or write it, a great book is a like a treasure chest that stays with you your whole life. And it all starts with one string of wonderful words!” 

For more information on Barbara Odanaka, go to

That special Laguna evening feel

Photo by Scott Brashier

That special Laguna moon

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Soaring into the fall night with spectacular views

LBHS Drama presents William Shakespeare’s 

Romeo & Juliet starting Nov 2

Laguna Beach High School Drama invites audiences to a performance of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet at the Laguna Beach High School Artists Theatre beginning Friday, Nov 2 at 7 p.m. A timeless tale of jealousy, prejudice, betrayal, and true love, Romeo and Juliet try to defy the circumstances that forbid their love, with heartbreaking results. 

LBHS Drama presents building

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LBHS is thrilled to perform Romeo and Juliet during the month of November

Set in modern day, in the fictional town of Verona, California, where the wealthy families of the two young lovers are locked in a bitter feud, the LBHS production of Romeo & Juliet will feature the work of guest director Michael Irish, a 1999 alumnus of Laguna Beach High School and the Park Avenue Players. 

Irish has been performing theater, film, and voice-over for over 25 years, appearing in companies such as The Laguna Playhouse, South Coast Repertory, The Chance Theater (where he was a Resident Company Member for five years), Shakespeare By The Sea, The Pearl Theatre, and Allentown Shakespeare, to name a few. 

“Watching this story unfold over the last two months has been a distinct and unforgettable privilege and joy,” said Director Michael Irish. “These students are fiercely talented and uncommonly brave. The opportunity to share my love of Shakespeare’s works and pay forward what the LBHS Drama gave me, here in my old theater with a new generation of artists, was too priceless to let pass,” he concluded.

“Something unique and special occurs when our alumni artists collaborate with our current students,” said LBHS and Thurston Middle School Drama Teacher and Director Alexis Karol. “There is a certain level of trust that falls into place immediately. We’re thrilled to have Michael on board as a guest director. As a working professional who specializes in Shakespeare and fight choreography, and an educator skilled in making the language of Shakespeare accessible to young people, I can’t imagine a better match for our production of Romeo and Juliet.”

Tickets are on sale now at Tickets are $12 for students and $17/$22 (Premium) for adults.

Pacific Marine Mammal Center happenings 

Welcome veterinarian Dr. Kristen Sakamaki

Pacific Marine Mammal Center welcomes Dr. Kristen Sakamaki, DVM. Dr. Sakamaki grew up in Plano, Texas with two older sisters and one younger sister. If you were to ask Kristen what she wanted to be when she grew up, she would have told you a horse or dolphin trainer. Dr. Sakamaki attended the University of North Texas and graduated from the College of Science with a degree in Biology. Upon graduation, she traveled to Japan to explore her love of the history and culture. After three years, she returned to Texas, speaking Japanese, and enrolled in Texas A&M University to pursue a doctorate in veterinary medicine. 

PMMC new Vet

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Dr. Sakamaki is shown with the rescued harbor seal Triscuit

During her second year of veterinary school, Dr. Sakamaki accepted an externship at the Marine Mammal Care Center in Los Angeles. She became very passionate about the rehabilitation process and wanted to dedicate her career to the field. Dr. Sakamaki met her husband at Japanese immersion classes. 

She divides her time between PMMC and Vet 4 Healthy Pet, a clinic that specializes in the care of English bulldogs and French bulldogs. In her free time, you will find Dr. Sakamaki baking, hiking, singing karaoke, riding horses, kick boxing, or cheering on her Dallas Cowboys.

PMMC Volunteer Spotlight Ashley Glenn

Ashley Glenn started volunteering in PMMC’s Treasure Trove Gift Shop in December 2017. Ocean conservation and public policy have always been big interests to Glenn. Her initial impression of PMMC was that it was a small, but the organization is doing a lot of big things.

 Glenn loves how at PMMC it isn’t just about animal care, the gift shop, or education – rather it takes all three departments to make the big picture work. She enjoys interacting with guests and informing them not only about the gift shop merchandise, but also about all of PMMC’s “green” efforts. 

PMMC Volunteer Ashley Glenn

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Submitted photo

Spotlight on PMMC volunteer Ashley Glenn and her achievements

She enjoys participating in running events, especially when the runs encourage philanthropy. When she is not running, she herself is participating in Ultimate Frisbee games. 

PMMC is the benefactor of a Girl Scout’s Silver Award

PMMC is the lucky benefactor of a Girl Scout’s Silver Award. The Silver Award is the second highest award of the Girl Scouts of the USA, and the highest award that a Girl Scout Cadette can earn.

Ashley Koenck chose the unique task of restoring whale bones for the visitor yard. She partnered with Jim Dines, a conservator at the Natural History Museum, to clean and stabilize the bones.

PMMC Girl Scout

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Submitted photo

PMMC volunteer extraordinaire Ashley Koenck

Koenck became interested in the Pacific Marine Mammal Center because she has a love, interest, and passion for all types of animals and has ambitions to one day become a veterinarian. PMMC wishes Koenck the best of luck and thanks her for all her contributions. 

PMMC is located at 20612 Laguna Canyon Rd. For more information or to make a donation, call (949) 494-3050 or visit

Autumn Pumpkin Paradise

Autumn Pumpkin pies

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Photo by Tom Berndt

That’s a lotta pumpkin pies

Upcoming Community Safety Event to commemorate 25th Anniversary of Laguna Beach Fire 

A Community Safety Event commemorating the 25th Anniversary of the 1993 Laguna Beach Fire (which burned approximately 16,000 acres and destroyed or damaged over 400 homes in the City) will be held on Saturday, Oct 27, from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at Fire Station 1 (located at 505 Forest Avenue next to City Hall).

Upcoming community fireman

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Courtesy of LB Fire Dept

Fireman on radio during 1993 fire

This community event will involve many of the City Departments that play an important role in providing emergency response to the City’s residents and visitors during and after a natural disaster. 

The event will feature informational booths, fire engine tours and tours of Fire Station 1, the Laguna Beach Fire Goats, information on the “Ready-Set-Go” home wildfire protection initiative, emergency information and resident resources, CERT program information and much more.

Dog Days of Autumn

Dog days ball

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Photo by Scott Brashier

They’ll never ever take the summer away from me

Elizabeth Turk will be the featured artist in Laguna Art Museum’s sixth annual Art & Nature 

Laguna Art Museum will present the sixth annual Art & Nature, a multidisciplinary exploration of art’s many and various engagements with the natural world, on Nov 1 - 4.

Art & Nature includes a work of art specially commissioned for the event. Elizabeth Turk’s Shoreline Project is a site-specific performance on Main Beach. The event includes a keynote lecture on Charles Darwin by Jane Munro of the Fitzwilliam Museum at the University of Cambridge. There will be a film screening, panel discussion, and a free family festival exploring art and the natural world. 

Elizabeth Turk Portrait

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Submitted Photo

Laguna Art Museum is presenting Elizabeth Turk and her artwork in Art & Nature

In addition to events at the museum, Laguna Art Museum will partner with local galleries and other organizations hosting Art & Nature-related exhibitions, making it a community-wide event.

Art & Nature serves a number of purposes to provide a festival of art and ideas for the community. The goal is to inspire artists, to find and develop connections between art and science, to raise awareness of environmental issues, and to celebrate Laguna Beach as a center for the appreciation of art and nature.

Elizabeth Turk Umbrella

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Submitted Photo

The Shoreline Project has brought together 1,000 volunteer performers 

The museum’s executive director, Malcolm Warner, explains why Laguna Art Museum is the ideal organization to conceive, develop, and present the popular program. 

“The theme of Art & Nature speaks particularly to the identity of Laguna Beach, which for over a hundred years has been a center for art, the appreciation of nature, and environmental awareness.

“In 1929, when the Laguna Beach Art Association built an art gallery to show and sell their work, they chose a commanding location on the coastline close to the natural wonders they loved to paint. 

“The present museum occupies the same site. There could be no more appropriate venue in which to explore the art-nature connection.” 

Elizabeth Turk’s Shoreline Project will bring together 1,000 volunteer performers for a site-specific performance in town. It will create a shared common experience amongst the performers and an engaging spectacle for viewers from the surrounding cliffs and buildings.

Speaker Jane Munro is the Keeper of paintings, drawings, prints and acting assistant director of collections at the University of Cambridge. 

Laguna Art Museum is located at 307 Cliff Dr. For more information on Art & Nature, call (949) 494-8971 or visit

Happiness is a Wave

Happiness is dog surfing

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Photo by Scott Brashier

Think I can catch this one?

Have a scary good time at Pageant of the Monsters

Oct 26, 27, 28 and 31 at FOA

Just when you thought it was safe to go backstage…The Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters brings a “monster” of a good time to Laguna.

Reviving an event from years past, Pageant of the Masters Director Diane Challis Davy presents the Pageant of the Monsters, transforming the Pageant’s backstage into a Haunted House with an artistic twist. 

The event will take place on October 26, 27, 28 and 31 at the Festival of Arts from 6 - 9:30 p.m. This is the 5th presentation of Pageant of the Monsters. Davy originated the haunted house idea in 1996; it was repeated in 1997 and then again in 2007 and 2013.   

This year, the Pageant of the Masters’ creative team of artists and technicians has reunited to resurrect the acclaimed Halloween Haunted House as part of the Pageant of the Masters 85th Anniversary celebration. Guests will be directed through the amphitheater, Pageant workshops and stage, which have been transformed into a series of eerie artistically presented vignettes.

Themed Raiders of the Lost Art, guests will follow the footsteps of legendary archeologist and adventurer “Cincinnati Smith” on a perilous quest to recover treasures from exotic locales across the globe. Trek through the creepy jungle empire of the Amazon to the desert tombs of the pharaohs in this whimsical and haunted spoof.

Davy reveals, “It’s not your usual haunted house. It will be a little scary and spooky, but lots of fun for the whole family.”

Pageant of the Monsters

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Submitted photo by FOA

Don’t miss the Pageant of the Monsters at the FOA: it’s a scary good time, a true treat for the community to enjoy

In addition to the haunted house, the Festival of Arts will also be holding a scarecrow competition inviting local community groups, clubs, organizations and individuals to participate. Attendees will be able to vote on their favorite from October 26 to 28 and the winners will be announced on October 31. The competition is open to the public and cash prizes will be awarded. The deadline to register is October 12. For information on entering the scarecrow contest, visit www.foapom/monsters. 

Other fiendish tricks and treats on the Festival grounds include an alien autopsy, demented chef and other spooky side shows, up close encounters with the Reptile Zoo, face painting and airbrush temporary tattoos, Halloween photo-ops and selfie stations, silent horror film movie screenings, create your own mask workshop, “Boo Bingo” and build a ghost with Laguna Art-A-Fair, draw Halloween-themed ghouls and Jack O’ Lanterns in oil pastels with Sawdust Art and Craft Festival, tissue paper roses with Laguna Playhouse inspired by the upcoming performance Beauty and the Beast, and A Christmas Rose.

Plus don’t miss the opportunity to do tile glazing with LOCA Arts Education and Festival of Mosaics for a new permanent public mural in Laguna Beach, music by KX 93.5, Laguna’s Only FM, food and drink available for purchase, art displays, games, and more “spook-tacular” activities the whole family can enjoy.

Tickets are $15 for adults in advance, $20 at the door, and $10 for children 12 and under. This event is not recommended for children under 5. Tickets are available online at or by phone at (800) 487-3378. 

Costumes may be worn by guests ages 12 and under. Guests 13 and older are not permitted to wear costumes. The event will take place at Festival of Arts, 650 Laguna Canyon Rd.

Community invited to all-ages musical by Laguna’s Literary Laureate at Boys & Girls Club

The Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach and local playwright and City of Laguna Beach Literary Laureate Lojo Simon invite the community to a free performance of Seeds of Change on Monday, Nov 5 at 5:30 pm. Seeds of Change is a new all-ages musical by Simon and is touring the country through Creede Repertory Theatre’s Young Audience Outreach Tour. 

Community invited to

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Photo by John Gary Brown

Seeds of Change is a show for all ages and explores topics in environmental science and deforestation

Inspired by myth, fairy tale and Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Seeds of Change fosters environmental literacy through the story of an ornery young girl who leaves the isolated Isle of Oro where she grew up and embarks on a journey of self-discovery. This bilingual story explores topics in environmental science, deforestation, ocean plastic, and habitat loss through wonder and empowerment. 

As part of Family Fun Night at the Boys & Girls Club, a pre-show reception will be held at 5 p.m. and pizza will be served. After the performance, each child receives an original book that reinforces the play’s themes. 

This performance is open to the community and offered free of charge, but RSVP is required. Contact Linnea at (949) 494-2535 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view RSVP.

Founded in 1966, Creede Repertory Theatre is a professional theatre company located at 9,000 feet in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. CRT’s award-winning company produces big city quality productions in this spectacular location from May through September. Each season, CRT produces 7-10 plays in rotating repertory, hosts numerous musical events and concerts, develops new works through the Headwaters New Play Program, and offers nationally recognized educational programming. USA Today called CRT “one of the 10 best places to see the lights way off Broadway” and The Denver Post hailed CRT as “legendary” and “one of the state’s top five theatre companies.” For more information, visit

Laguna Beach Methodist Church presents Messy Church on Sunday

Messy Church is back at Laguna Beach Methodist Church this Sunday. This time it offers “Dark Shadows,” a creative, interactive Halloween event for people of all ages on Sunday between 4 and 6 p.m. 

Barbara Crowley, who is leading Messy Church at LBUMC, says, “Messy Church invites the whole family for Halloween fun. It offers a meaningful spiritual experience for families looking for something outside of traditional Sunday morning worship.”

Laguna Beach Methodist outside

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Messy Church at LBUMC presents a creative interactive Halloween event for all ages

Future Messy Church experiences are scheduled as following: “Searches and Synergy” will be held Sunday, Nov 18 between 11:15 a.m. and 2 p.m. Pie and Cider will be served. On Sunday, Dec 2 between 4 and 6 p.m., “Prepare Your Heart for Christmas” will be offered. 

For additional information, contact the church at (949) 499-3088, or visit

Laguna Beach Methodist Church is located at 21632 Wesley Dr.

Cookie lovers are encouraged to enter local Holiday Cookie Recipe Contest

The community is invited to participate in the Community Services Department’s second annual Holiday Cookie Recipe Contest. Each participant is asked to submit their cookie recipe and the story behind their family’s recipe. Five finalists will be selected to bake a sample batch for a taste test on November 5. 

Cookie lovers are sweets

Submitted photo

Holiday cookie enthusiasts are invited to enter their tasty recipes

Entries may be submitted online or at the front desk of the Community and Susi Q Center, and submissions are due by October 26.

For more information, contact Adam Gufarotti, Senior Recreation Supervisor at (949) 497-0304.

Elizabeth Murphy presents Things Seen and Unseen on Oct 28

The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Laguna Beach invites the community on Sunday, Oct 28 at 10:30 a.m. for a presentation by Elizabeth Murphy titled “Things Seen and Unseen.” 

Elizabeth Murphy presents

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Murphy is a Master of Divinity student at the Claremont School of Theology

Many cultures and faith traditions will take time later this week to remember loved ones and others in the community who have passed away. Annual observations, such as All Souls Day (on November 2, 2018), Dia de Los Muertos, Samhain, and others, try to provide an answer to the age-old question: What is (or isn’t) beyond life this world? 

Elizabeth Murphy is a Master of Divinity student at the Claremont School of Theology and is an aspirant for ordination with the Unitarian Universalist Association. She’s currently working as the Interfaith Program Assistant at the University of Southern California’s Office of Religious Life, supporting undergraduates building relationships across faith traditions and creating intentional interfaith experiences for the campus community. Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Ms. Murphy moved to Los Angeles in 2017 with her wife, Hilary, a graduate student at UCLA.

For additional information, contact Oakley Frost at (949) 280-2995. 

The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of LB is located at 429 Cypress Dr.

Meet Pet of the Week Ziggy

Ziggy is currently taking the title of Pet of the Week. He is a five-year-old poodle mix, and is a neutered male. He is extremely sweet and is housebroken as well. One thing he requires is to be groomed. He is full of energy and is ready to love someone who will take him in. He loves to play outside and is excited for a new adventure. Nancy Goodwin, shelter director, hopes to see Ziggy adopted as soon as possible. 

Pet of the Week Ziggy

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Ziggy is full of smiles in hopes to get adopted soon 

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

The LB Animal Shelter is located at 20612 Laguna Canyon Rd. Call (949) 497-3552 or go to the website for information on adoption procedures:

Stu News and KX 93.5 City Council Candidate Forum Video