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Newport Beach


Mountain caught lion Newport Beach

A Department of Fish and Wildlife biologist successfully tranquilized a mountain lion located in the side yard of a home on Port Cardigan in Newport Beach.

After being hit by the dart, the lion ran to a backyard on Port Albans where it went to sleep. Fish and Wildlife personnel have removed and loaded the cat into their truck for relocation.

The Newport Beach Police Department, Animal Control and local Fish and Wildlife officers confirmed a mountain lion sighting earlier today in the Port Streets. 

The agencies then deployed personnel to the area in an attempt to locate the mountain lion and used drones to search the area. 

The presence of the mountain lion is attributed to the recent Laguna Beach Coastal Fire, which displaced wildlife from their natural habitat, and is assumed to be the same mountain lion, M317, recently seen in Laguna Beach.


Primary Election Information for Newport Beach

Voting Center Locations

Newport Beach Civic Center, 100 Civic Center Drive

(Opens May 28: May 28-June 3, 8 a.m.-5 p.m./June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

Coastline College, 1515 Monrovia Ave.

(Opens June 4: June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.)

Marina Park Community Center, 2nd Floor, 1600 W. Balboa Blvd.

(Opens June 4: June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.)

Newport Coast Community Center, 6401 San Joaquin Hills Road

(Opens June 4: June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.)

OASIS Senior Center Event Center, 801 Narcissus Ave.

(Opens June 4: June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.)

St. Mark Presbyterian Church, 2200 San Joaquin Hills Road

(Opens June 4: June 4-6, 8 a.m.-8 p.m./June 7, 7 a.m.-8 p.m.)

Ballot Drop Box Locations

Available 24/7 beginning May 9 through June 7 (until 8 p.m.)

Bob Henry Park, 900 Dover Drive (Walk-Up only)

Newport Beach Public Library, 1000 Avocado Ave. (Drive-Thru only)

OASIS Senior Center (Auxiliary Parking Lot) Fifth Ave./Marguerite Ave. (Drive-Thru only)

Sidewalk at the corner of Avon Street & Riverside Avenue (Walk-Up only)

Dates to Remember

Monday, May 9 – Vote-by-Mail Ballot Mailing Begins

Monday, May 23 – Last Day to Register to Vote

Saturday, May 28 – Select Vote Centers Open

Saturday, June 4 – All Vote Centers Open

Tuesday, June 7 – Election Day


Exchange Club of Newport Harbor presents the 13th Annual Field of Honor

Each year, Exchange Club of Newport Harbor presents the Field of Honor recognizing the service of men and women of the American military forces and first responders. The field consists of 1,776 large American flags proudly displayed along the pathways of Castaways Park, Dover Drive and 16th Street in Newport Beach, overlooking Newport Back Bay, Newport Harbor and the Pacific Ocean.

Flags may be dedicated in honor of those who have served in any branch of the American military either currently or in the past, in peacetime or in times of combat. They have been honored to have flags dedicated to soldiers as far back as the American Revolutionary War and most periods since. First responder dedications include police, fire, paramedics, lifeguards and medical personnel.  The name of the honoree is attached to a ribbon and placed on the flagpole along with any photos or other memorabilia that the donor who dedicated the flag wishes to add.

Exchange Club flags on path

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Photo by Ken Dufour

American flags line the path in Castaways Park with a view of Newport Harbor

The flags are on display, rain or shine, for 11 days from May 20 through May 30, encompassing both Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day. At the end of the event, dedicated flags may be claimed by the donors to proudly display at their home or business. A Certificate of Authenticity is presented with each dedicated flag.

All net proceeds from the event are distributed to organizations focused on the prevention of child abuse and those providing financial assistance to our military personnel, first responders and their families, in addition to scholarships awarded to college-bound students.

Bring the whole family and friends to walk among the American flags while enjoying the scenic coastal views. It will make you proud to live in this great country and proud of our flag, which is a shining symbol of American patriotism.

Consider dedicating one of the flags to honor a loved one, to those who defend us, and to those who serve and protect us. Flag dedications are $50 per honoree. Visit www.exchangeclubofnewportharbor.com to dedicate a flag or make a donation.

Exchange Club Field of Honor

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Photo by Ken Dufour

Field of Honor in Castaways Park with the U.S. Marine memorial statue and Upper Newport Bay in sight

Two special patriotic programs will be presented at the Castaways Park memorial statue and Flag Plaza:

–Armed Forces Day on Saturday, May 21 beginning at 12 p.m.

–Memorial Day on Monday, May 30 beginning at 12 p.m.

Park entry and patriotic programs are free of charge.


Pets 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.

The shelter would like to introduce you to their newest, approximately 9-week-old sisters, Maxine and Mara. They are DARLING. They have the time of their life running around and would enjoy a loving home where they can have loads of kitten fun. If you’ve been waiting for kitten season to begin, it’s here, and they’re working diligently to provide you with an opportunity to adopt the most beloved furry family members.

Pets of the Week Maxine and Mara

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Courtesy of Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Maxine and Mara

If you’ve been waiting for sweet kittens, please feel free to contact the Newport Beach Animal Shelter at 949.718.3454, or through email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out more about Maxine and Mara.

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.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Problems with Anaheim’s elected mayor heighten community concerns

TOM MARCHHarry Sidhu is the Mayor of Anaheim. His recent actions can’t be good for the Yes on B side of the Measure on the ballot in the upcoming June Primary Election. Here’s why, Sidhu is an elected mayor that has supposedly used his power in what appears to be an attempt to leverage the Los Angeles Angels in that city’s sale of Angel Stadium.

The quick overview is that Sidhu is under federal investigation for alleged corruption, some of which is connected to the Angel Stadium sale by the City of Anaheim.

What Sidhu is accused of in an affidavit filed in federal court on May 12 is possibly sharing privileged and confidential information with the Angels concerning the city’s side of their stadium sale, and possibly attempting to leverage a sizable campaign contribution from the Angels connected with that information.

And, although the city council has asked Sidhu to resign, he has no obligation to do so. Their recourse could then be a protracted recall effort.

Here’s the difference to present day Newport Beach. If a mayor here did something similar, the city council could convene at the very next meeting and begin efforts to remove him/her from their mayoral position. 

Now, you can say, “This would never happen in Newport Beach,” but how do you know? When huge projects can result in millions of dollars changing hands, anything is possible.

Three options for residents to consider when casting their vote on B: 1) continue on and approve Measure B and assume nothing like this will ever happen in Newport Beach; 2) reject Measure B and continue on as we’ve done our business for years, or 3) if you want an elected mayor, reject measure B and then, after the election, encourage our council to open up communitywide discussions garnering input from all sides and design an elected mayor position with the necessary safeguards in place to help avoid a similar Sidhu problem here.

Several letters today in our Stu News’ Letters to the Editor also point to concerns in Anaheim and what it might mean right here for Newport Beach.

• • •

It’s always interested in the feedback we get from readers. In fact, the first thing I do when I wake up Tuesday and Friday mornings, following publication, is to check my social media inboxes and see what comments are coming in. Some days I feel like I have to duck back under the covers, while other days I can simply take a deep breath and move on with my day.

One thing I’ve learned, you have to have tough skin. People take their shots, like it or not, and when you write an opinion column such as I do with Fair Game, you set yourself up for it.

Sometimes, though, the comments are almost laughable. I’ll give you a recent example. A guy writes in calling Stu News “biased” for running more letters against Measure B than in favor of Measure B.

First off, if he wanted to take me to task for personally supporting the No on B side in this column, that’s perfectly acceptable and deserving. No problem.

But to question the mix of letters suggests that we’re not running letters in support of the Measure. We publish the letters we receive, assuming they meet publishing guidelines. We don’t write letters ourselves in an attempt to balance things out, so if people supporting B choose not to write us, that’s simply not something we can control.

So, to balance things out we’d actually have to not run letters written by the other side because they’ve become more aggressive in their letter writing. That’s simply not fair.

At the end of the day, however, I’d like to think that Stu News Newport is a lot more than a “biased” publication. Most of each edition supports so many different aspects on Newport Beach, from schools, to arts, to city activities and more, trying to keep you, our community informed.

As I’ve said before, we try and be a mix of the following: 1) We want to be the community watchdog – if somebody is drinking on the dais, we’ll let you know…if a councilmember makes statements that embarrass the city, we’ll call him/her out…and, don’t get me started if we find money missing somewhere. 2) We’re the community forum – we invite your letters, no matter what side you’re on, as long as, again, they’re acceptable to our guidelines. We also offer community leaders the opportunity to write Guest Letters. 3) We want to be the reservoir of community information – if it’s happening in town, and it’s legal, we should find a place for it. 4) We are the community cheerleader – when we see someone or something that deserves recognition, or even a boost, we’re there to help.

That doesn’t mean we’re perfect. And, I hope when we err, we’re not afraid to admit our mistakes, apologize and move forward. It’s the right thing to do.

• • •

The 2022 Hoag Summer Fest is on the horizon, planned for Wednesday, June 22 from 5-8 p.m. at the Newport Dunes

The evening, chaired by Dr. James Caillouette and Gabby White, includes tastings from more than 40 of Orange County’s finest restaurants (check them out at www.hoaghospitalfoundation.org/hoagsummerfest) and live entertainment featuring Tijuana Dogs.

To purchase tickets, go here.

• • •

The Corona del Mar Chamber has a Mix & Mingle this Tuesday, May 24, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. hosted by Engel & Völkers, 3636 E. Coast Highway.

It’ll be a casual business setting where people can share their products or services, or just socialize. Enjoy hors d’oeuvres, wine, refreshments, art and music.

It’s open to the public.

• • •

Newport Harbor High School will host the 32nd Annual Memorial Day Ceremony on Friday, May 27 from 10-11 a.m.

In honor of veterans, American Legion Post 291 Color Guard and Rifle Squad will perform a “21 Gun Salute” for our fallen veterans – the highest honor bestowed. The ceremony will take place on campus in front of the bell tower off of 15th Street.

The Newport Beach Police Department is advising the community that during the “21 Gun Salute” three brief loud noises may be audible.

• • •

Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley will host her first State of the County address next Wednesday, May 25. The address will provide updates on countywide accomplishments throughout the past year and offer a preview of future initiatives. 

The address will take place from 11 a.m.-12 p.m., followed by an old-fashioned BBQ on the historic Old Orange County Courthouse lawn, located at 211 W. Santa Ana Blvd., Santa Ana

Residents who want to attend should RSVP to bit.ly/kfsotc, as seating is limited.


Mayor’s Dinner will unveil the VEA Newport Beach, G.M. Debbie Snavely offers her insight

By GARY SHERWIN

Like a debutante emerging at her ball, the new VEA Newport Beach, a Marriott Resort and Spa, was informally introduced to the city’s business and social elite last night at the Mayor’s Dinner with hundreds gathered on her new event lawn before heading to the ballroom to hear Mayor Kevin Muldoon.

While the social aspect of the dinner an hour beforehand is sometimes the most popular part of the evening, this year that part of the program was even more noteworthy given the new hotel buzz factor.

While VEA’s official Grand Opening won’t happen until late June, this was the chance to wander around and gawk at the massive transformation of the property which has been a year in the making.

The hotel’s owners, Eagle Four and Lyon Living, did a wonderful job in reimaging the property and significantly increasing the investment to make it a standout luxury tier facility. But the person on the front lines has been General Manager Debbie Snavely who has not only navigated the construction but also kept the hotel open in the middle of it all.

Gary Sherwin

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

Now that Debbie is nearly at the finish line for the redesign of the property, I’d thought I’d ask how she has managed all of this, especially coming out of the pandemic.

Stu News: It has been a traumatic couple of years now, hasn’t it? First the pandemic and then your hotel is purchased and more than $70 million has been reinvested in it in the last year. How are you holding up?

Debbie: If someone wrote the story of this property since early 2020, no one would have believed it. During COVID, we went from over 80% occupancy to about 5% in less than two weeks. We had to furlough many of our associates, and we kept the hotel open with a very, very small staff with everyone pitching in. We stayed open but only had a small number of rooms available and many of those guests were first responders. Our team was fantastic, and they really pulled through during the toughest of times. Now with essentially a completely new hotel, we have been on a hiring spree and those dark days seem so long ago, even though they aren’t. I’m much happier being where we are today, naturally!

Stu News: Eagle Four and Lyon Living made an unsolicited offer to buy the property in late 2020. Were you surprised?

Debbie: The hotel was not on the market and HOST, our previous owner, considered this hotel to be one of its better performing assets. Initially, I think everyone was surprised but during COVID, I believed almost anything was possible. But the fact that a local ownership group with a proven track record of managing their products in a quality way purchased the resort, that got me excited.

Stu News: What intrigues you most about the project?

Debbie: Eagle Four and Lyon Living were very clear that VEA would become a premium hospitality product. When you add the Ritz-Carlton Residences to the mix, this becomes a true luxury campus. There will be no other place like it in Orange County and that is very exciting. We will be the leaders in the area for both luxury residential and hotel experiences. And the fact that we have local engaged ownership makes all of it irresistible.

Stu News: What is your favorite part of the project?

Debbie: The vision of VEA is to bring the outside in, so the design maximizes our ocean views. We also created a new Great Room area where the atrium and the large fountain was located. That gives us some dramatic new space and a bar area adjacent to the lanai and the firepits. It’s just gorgeous. But I also really like our new pool area. The old pool is gone, and we have created some wonderful social space, a reinvented pool area and a cantilevered bar over the Newport Beach Country Club golf course. 

Stu News: How different is the room product?

Debbie: Night and day. All the rooms were taken down to the studs and rebuilt including the bathrooms. In addition to the guest rooms, we added new family suites with rooms connecting with a living room and kitchen area. We have fire pits on the patios with those rooms facing the golf course. And all the rooms have luxury amenities such as Frette towels, robes, Nespresso machines and Molton Brown bath amenities.

Stu News: So, this hotel will not have a formal restaurant?

Debbie: The food and beverage operations in hotels have changed a lot in the last few years, and we are fortunate to have Fashion Island across the street with lots of options. We wanted to bring a fresh perspective to our dining options. We will have three amazing food and beverage concepts. Elan Café and Bar, a coastal mingling of a warm European Patisserie and Tapas Bar. The View that will showcase three meals. Start the day with breakfast and wind down with small bites, sharables and cocktails. The cuisine is California Coastline with a Mediterranean perspective. Edge Pool & Bar is inspired by Latin American flavors with a Coastal California focus. Of course, being a luxury property, we will have In-Room Dining. 

Stu News: I’ve heard a lot about someone called Elan. Who is that and what does she have to do with the project?

Debbie: Elan is our muse; our inspiration for the hotel. When we began designing the property, our concepting firm suggested that we humanize the project by creating a personality who would embody the essence of what the hotel is all about. Elan was born out of that process. Essentially, she is a well-traveled, professional woman with sophisticated tastes and although she is a fictional character her presence is definitely felt at the property. As you enter the lobby, you can see the various artifacts from her travels. There is even a beautiful piece of art on the resort that illustrates what we think she looks like. 

Stu News: So now that you are almost open, are you going to take a break?

Debbie: Well, not for a while. Opening what is essentially a new hotel and working out all the operational opportunities will take time. We’ve built an amazing team that will deliver outstanding service, but any new property takes some time to get its rhythm down. But I do have a trip to Asia booked for next year with my husband Ned and I’m looking forward to that!

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


NMUSD Superintendent Character Trait Awards 2022 announced

Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith recognized seven high school seniors for their exceptional character leadership traits. Since 2012, the Superintendent Character Trait Awards Program recognizes one graduating senior from each high school who exemplifies a pillar of character: caring, citizenship, courage, fairness, respect, responsibility and trustworthiness.

“We have many exceptional students in our district, some of them are recognized for success in academics, arts, athletics, or other achievements. However these Character Trait Awards recognize students for simply having good character, the foundation to any success,” according to NMUSD.

Each high school is asked to nominate one senior they believe exemplifies a designated character trait. In April, the seven nominated students received a surprise classroom visit from Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith and were recognized at the May 17 Board of Education meeting.

As part of the awards program, each student also has a banner with their name, photo, school and character trait displayed in the district office the following school year, as a reminder to all who enter to have good character.

“With students like these leading the way, the future is bright,” said Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith. “They are shining examples of the impact good character can have on a school community and the world,” he said.

Honorees at Newport Harbor High School and Corona del Mar High School:

FAIRNESS: Chase Dionio, Newport Harbor High School

Chase Dionio is recognized for her fairness, as she is known for giving classmates opportunities to share and express their opinions, consistently listening and considering other students’ points of view.

As a stand-out basketball player on the team, Dionio demonstrated fairness by asking her coach to start a fellow senior who had never started a game. She is always concerned about making sure others have the opportunity to participate and be included.

NMUSD Superintendent Chase Dionio

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of NMUSD

(L-R) 2022 NMUSD Board President Michelle Barto, Chase Dionio, Newport Harbor High School Principal Sean Boulton and NMUSD Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith

At home, Dionio also demonstrates fairness. When her family was relocating to a new home during the holidays, her parents were busy packing and she took the initiative to do the holiday shopping for her entire family, including gifts and meals, to ensure that everyone would have a special holiday.

“Chase cares about systems and structures that promote access and inclusion in our society,” said Newport Harbor High School Principal Sean Boulton. “I am thrilled to see Chase recognized for fairness, as she consistently ensures that all students are included and recognized at school,” he said.

Dionio will attend Orange Coast College next year with plans to transfer to a Division 1 basketball school the following year.

RESPONSIBILITY: Odette Ramirez, Corona del Mar High School

When Odette Ramirez enrolled at Corona del Mar High School (CdM), she was deficient in credits. However, with caring support and guidance from CdM teachers and administration, she truly epitomizes responsibility and became determined to focus on her studies and make friends that would be a positive influence in her life.

It is impressive that in two years, Ramirez made up for the credit deficiency, earned 108 credits, and is on her way to graduating this year, all while also taking care of her siblings and having a job.

NMUSD Superintendent Odette Ramirez

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of NMUSD

(L-R) 2022 NMUSD Board President Michelle Barto, Corona del Mar High School Principal Josh Hill, Odette Ramirez and NMUSD Superintendent Dr. Wesley Smith

She has taken extraordinary care to help her sister, who is newly enrolled at CdM this year, to ensure that she feels comfortable on campus and connected to other students. She can often be found helping her younger brother with math homework, grocery shopping, preparing dinner for the family, or doing laundry.

“Odette is one of the most responsible students who has ever attended our school,” said Principal Josh Hill. “We are so extremely proud of all that she has accomplished and the good role model she has become to others,” he said.

Ramirez plans to attend community college and then transfer to Chapman University majoring in occupational therapy.

The other high school students recognized in the district include: CARING: Xinhui (Angela) Gao, Cloud Campus High School; CITIZENSHIP: Sophia Catania Orozco, Costa Mesa High School; COURAGE: Uriel Rivera, Early College High School; RESPECT: Nicole Sullivan, Back Bay/Monte Vista High School; and TRUSTWORTHINESS: Lily Shandalove, Estancia High School.

Congratulations to all the 2022 Character Trait Award winners.


Mouth of the harbor

Mouth of the harbor.png SNN 5.20

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

Peninsula Point, looking out toward Corona del Mar State Beach


On the Harbor: from Harbormaster Paul Blank to fishing tournament winners

By LEN BOSE

Everything appears to be going as planned this spring season with twilight sailing starting – Balboa Angling Club’s Lily Call harbor fishing tournament. Yes, everything is going as planned until you look over City Harbormaster Paul Blank’s first year at the helm.

I am going to start off by again telling everyone just how fortunate we are to have Blank as the harbormaster. In a sailboat race when the wind changes direction, we refer to it as a wind shift, if the wind has changed direction many times during a race we will identify that race as being shifty. Harbormaster Blank’s first year has been shifty from a seat of the pants sailor as I am. This wind reference would not fit right if Blank was a politician; he is a very good sailor so it should be fitting.

On the Harbor Paul Blank sailing

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Courtesy of Paul Blank

Harbormaster Paul Blank enjoying some time on the water in his Herreshoff 12.5, named “Nate”

Harbormaster Blank took the helm back on May 3, 2021 and during his first year he worked through an oil spill. I am sure you all recall the oil spill that occurred during one of our harbor’s busiest days of the year – the Huntington Beach Air Show. That Friday, the fleet headed out and many of the vessels returned with oil clinging to their hull. The next morning, the Coast Guard called requesting the harbor be shut down. Blank sent out his crew of harbor service workers to inform boaters on what was happening on why they could not leave the harbor. The Coast Guard was also looking for a staging area to clean boats within the harbor. The harbor’s next wind shift was in the form of an earthquake off Tonga with the Coast Guard throwing up the red flag again and closing the Harbor because of a Tsunami warning. During this last year, there were three severe weather warnings producing heavy rainfall in a short period of time. This is one way for a harbormaster to learn which boats in the harbor did not have working bilge pumps, then sending his crew out again to help pump out people’s boats.

Speaking of “pumping out,” the next wind shift came in the form of a sewage spill with 4,000-5,000 gallons of unsuitable water from an upland restaurant into the harbor closing down relational swimming, diving and other water activities. Let’s not forget the unfortunate downing of the Huntington Beach police helicopter into the harbor.

The next big wind shift was a mentally unstable person borrowing a rather large yacht and then ramming it into the docks damaging four or five boats in the marina, then heading toward the Lido bridge smashing the boat bow first into the Lido bridge. Can you imagine Blank receiving these phone calls early in the morning: “What an Oil Spill, Tsunami, a down helicopter, sewage spill and a crazy guy crashing into a bunch of boats!”

Now I would call that a shifty race for the first year at the helm as harbormaster. I have to assume this next year will be more of the same with illegal immigrants storming the beaches and event promoters planning raft-ups called Floatchella on Memorial Day weekend. Like I said, we are fortunate to have a sailor at the helm of the harbor that knows to tack on the headers and gybe on the lifts. For those of you who don’t understand the meaning of the last sentence, it means “stay on course.”

• • •

In my last column, I mentioned the Balboa Angling Club’s 59th Annual Lily Call Bay Tournament. I thought I would let everyone know who brought home the pickle dishes. This is a harbor fishing tournament with 4# test lines that ran on April 29 and May 1.

–Croaker: 3rd place was Rob Meinhardt at 1.03 lbs.; 2nd, Wayne Kircher at 1.12 lbs. and 1st place, Bob Middleton at 1.79 lbs.

–Corbina: 3rd place Wayne Kircher at 3.25 lbs.; 2nd place, Greg Taite at 3.52 lbs. and 1st place, Tommy Tupman at 4.52 lbs.

–Bass: In 3rd place, Jeff Macdonald at 2.01 lbs.; 2nd place, Tracy Decker at 2.12 lbs. and 1st place, Tomas Becerine at 3.53 lbs.

–Halibut: 1st place went to Joshua Kast at 6.74 lbs.

Remember, the Balboa Angling Club junior programs are among the best values in town.

• • •

Most of you have already seen it’s been rather sporty on the harbor this first week of twilight sailing. Yes, it has been “nuking,” “breeze on,” “Victory at Sea” and “Blowing dogs off chains” the first week of twilight sailing with the breeze in the 15-20 knots range. This kept most of the fleet, me included, on the sidelines earning their first kitty pins of the season. Week two has been much more civilized with the breeze staying between eight-nine knots. The Balboa Yacht Club’s Wednesday twilights have been the most active with 34 boats attending.

Sea ya.

~~~~~~~~

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


Take Five: Meet Richard Swinney, Field of Honor chairman for 2022

By AMY SENK

Each May for the past 13 years, Newport Beach residents driving by Castaways Park on Dover Drive notice an amazing sight of a field of American flags, 1,776 of them. Known as the Field of Honor, this has been an annual tribute to the nation’s Armed Forces, and more recently also includes recognition of our First Responders. Hosted by the Exchange Club of Newport Harbor, this year the event is organized by chairman Richard Swinney, so I caught up with him to learn more. 

Take Five Swinney

Courtesy of Field of Honor/Exchange Club of Newport Harbor

Richard Swinney

Q: Can you tell me the history of the Field of Honor and if there is anything new this year that folks should be aware of?

A: Exchange Club of Newport Harbor started the Field of Honor 13 years ago. It was initially focused around Armed Forces Day, but a few years ago the event was expanded to encompass Memorial Day as well. The number of people visiting the Field of Honor has swelled over the years from a few hundred to approximately 9,000 last year. Due to the pandemic, the club was unable to stage a complete Field of Honor in 2020 and 2021. In 2020, the City of Newport Beach only permitted the installation of 30 flags. Last year, we were permitted to stand up all 1,776 flags, but were not permitted to present any ceremonies. This year, the complete Field of Honor is back.

Q: Why do you think the Field of Honor has become so meaningful to so many Newport Beach residents?

A: The Field of Honor carries significant meaning to the residents of Newport Beach and others outside the city, because it is a pure display of patriotism, bookending two significant national days of remembrance – Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day – and it’s untainted by politics. When people walk the pathways lined with the nation’s flag and view various flags along the way that have been dedicated to military personnel, or first responders, and read some of the stories and view some of the pictures attached to some of those dedications, they cannot help but be moved by all the Field of Honor represents: Devotion to our nation and gratitude for all those who sacrificed, and continue to sacrifice, so much for our freedom and security.

Q: How and when did you get involved in the Exchange Club and how would you describe that club to someone? 

A: A good friend sponsored me into the Exchange Club five years ago after I retired from a legal career. I describe the club to others by highlighting its mission and goals, which were my primary attractions, although the camaraderie among its members is a definite plus. The Exchange Club is a charitable organization that is focused on the prevention of child abuse, the welfare of the nation’s military servicemen and women and the youth in the communities we serve. The club raises money through annual fundraisers such as the Field of Honor and provides annual donations and grants to charitable organizations such as The Priority Center (formerly known as the Orange County Child Abuse Prevention Center, which, by the way, was started by the Exchange Club in 1983); the Family Support Center in Downey; the 1:1 Marines Foundation (which, in turn, supports Marines and their families at Camp Pendleton); the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation; the American Legion’s Veteran’s Emergency Assistance Fund; the Newport Beach Junior Lifeguards program; the Newport-Mesa Spirit Run and the Newport-Mesa Schools Foundation, among others. In addition, the club on an annual basis provides scholarships to deserving high school seniors in the Newport-Mesa Unified School District who have chosen to further their formal education.

Take Five flags

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Photo by Ken Dufour

American flags in the Field of Honor along a path at Castaways Park

Q: What is your favorite, or most moving, memory or story from a Field of Honor event over the years?

A: What will be my most moving memory from the Field of Honor will take place during this year’s Field of Honor. We have two special guests who will be attending the Memorial Day ceremony. They are a mother and her son who recently escaped Ukraine and made their way to the U.S. through Mexico. They are a symbol of the struggle for democracy and freedom and they are incredibly grateful for having made their way to the United States.

Q: Besides your work with the Exchange Club, how do you enjoy spending your time?

A: Since retirement, I’ve immersed myself in volunteer work. Not only am I a member of the Exchange Club, a current director of the club, its secretary and past president, but I am also on the board and various committees of The Priority Center, the board and various committees of Crystal Cove Conservancy and the board and various committees of my homeowners association. In addition, I manage the State Parks landscape plan at Crystal Cove. But while my volunteer work is incredibly fulfilling, my greatest joy is my wife of 51 years, my four children, my sons-in-law, daughter-in-law and my nine grandchildren. I’m a big fan of the outdoors. My Dad was a geologist and I, along with my two brothers, spent many memorable summers in some remote location in the states. I enjoy skiing, hiking, biking, camping and fishing – and goofing around with my grandkids. My perfect day in Newport is gathering all of my immediate family at our home for a barbecue and fun in the pool and spa. There is nothing more gratifying. 

Editor’s Note: The Exchange Club of Newport Harbor’s Field of Honor takes place from May 20 through May 30. If you are interested in dedicating an American flag or making a donation, visit www.exchangeclubofnewportharbor.com. Admission is free to walk the pathways among the flags anytime during the event.

~~~~~~~~

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


School Notes

News and notes from our colleges and universities

Tatum Rausch, of Newport Beach, has earned a degree in Elementary Education from the University of Mississippi this month. Rausch received a Bachelor of Arts in Education from the School of Education.

May 2022 graduates were invited to walk across the stage at the University of Mississippi 169th Commencement exercises, which were held by individual colleges and schools May 4-8. 

The University of Mississippi, affectionately known as Ole Miss, is the state’s flagship university and is located in Oxford.

DharaniDhar Kotlapati, of Newport Beach, has graduated from Campbellsville University.

Dr. Joseph Hopkins, the 12th president of Campbellsville University, presided over his first commencement of 1,593 students on May 6-7 in Powell Athletic Center.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 12,000 students offering more than 100 programs of studying including Ph.D., master, baccalaureate, associate, pre-professional and certification programs. 

Gary Poon of Newport Beach has been named to Southern New Hampshire University’s Winter 2022 President’s List. Full-time undergraduate students who have earned a minimum grade-point average of 3.7 and above are named to the President’s List. 

Full-time status is achieved by earning 12 credits.

SNHU is a private, nonprofit institution with an 89-year history of educating traditional-aged students and working adults. Now serving more than 165,000 learners worldwide, SNHU offers approximately 200 accredited undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs, available online and on its 300-acre campus in Manchester, NH. 

Have your son or daughter register at their respective school to have information forwarded to Stu News Newport at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Regattas and Races…

Regattas and Races 5.20

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

BYC 

2022 Twilight Series - May

May 18

Harbor 20A Fleet (3 races)

1 Ed Kimball, ALYC, Total 5

2 Kincaid/Devlin, BCYC, Total 6

3 Matt Campbell, BYC, Total 7

4 Jim Sears, BYC, Total 12

Harbor 20C Fleet (3 races)

1 Gable/Verona, BYC, Total 3

2 Allen/Brooks, BYC, Total 6

3 Kimme/Carlson, BYC, Total 9

4 Wyatt/Bennett, BYC, Total 12

ILCA Fleet (4 races)

1 Jeff Linden, BYC, Total 11

2 Brett Hemphill, BYC, Total 31

3 Siena Nichols, BYC, Total 31

4 Alan Andrews, BYC, Total 32

5 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 33

6 Gator Cook, BYC, Total 34

Nevin Elliot, BYC/NHYC, Total 38

8 Qi Yan, BYC, Total 39

9 Rich Luttrell, BYC, Total 40

Lido 14 A Fleet (4 races)

1 Don Long, BYC, Total 6

2 Papadopoulos/Ogier, WSA, Total 10

Lido 14 B Fleet (4 races)

1 Lange/Mulcaire, ALYC, Total 5

2 Long/Swan, BYC, Total 7

Adult Sabot A Fleet (2 races)

1 Scott Finkboner, MBYC, Total 3

2 Molly Lynch, BYC, Total 5

3 Mike Bartell, BYC, Total 6

4 Karen Luttrell, BYC, Total 10

5 Susan Jennings, BYC/NHYC, Total 10

6 Linda Ungerland, BYC, Total 12

7 Bob Reilly, BYC, Total 14

8 Karen Stockman, BYC, Total 15

9 Matt Foreman, BYC, Total 17

10 Gail Kalscheur, BYC, Total 18

Adult Sabot B Fleet (2 races)

1 Debbie Meany, BYC, Total 2

2 Carol Harmon, BYC, Total 4

3 Teresa Power, BYC, Total 6

4 Stacy Ware, SSC, Total 8

5 Sandra Lindsey, BYC, Total 11

6 Eva Evans, BYC, Total 11

BCYC 

2022 Taco Tuesdays

May 17

(results not available)

ALYC

2022 ALYC Sundowner Series

May 16

H20B (2 races scored)

1 Ping, Anne Wiese, Total 4T

2 Spirit, Debra Haynes, Total 4T 

3 Jublilee, Patrick Kincaid, Total 5 

4 Emoji, Andrew Tosh, Total 6 

H20C (2 races scored)

1 Freedom, Ralph Simmonds, Total 2

2 Shazam, Stephen Alfano, Total 5 

3 Whim, Hubie Laugharn, Total 6 

4 Spiritus, Roger Grable, Total 7 

J22 (2 races scored)

1 Jack, Chris Hill, Total 2

2 Red Stripe, Bill Cohen, Total 5 

3 Iconoclast, Min Choi, Total 6 

4 Jenda, Robert Bents, Total 9T

5 Marina 5, Derek Matheson, Total 9T

PHRF A (2 races scored)

1 #29, Michael Darr, Total 4

2 Violetta, Jane Hartley, Total 6 

3 XLR8, Gabriel Nistor, Total 7 

4 Stella Maris, Theodore Barry, Total 8T

5 Healer, Larry Kliger, Total 8T

6 Starfire, Dan O’Sullivan, Total 10

PHRF B (2 races scored)

1 Hayden’s Havoc, Michael Hayden, Total 5

2 Kaizen, David Camerini, Total 6T

3 Buena Vista, Berkeley Green, Total 6T

4 Holokai, Ross McElfresh, Total 6T

5 Stanley’s Cup, Stanley Tutton, Total 6T

PHRF C (2 races scored)

1 Carioca, Bob Wine, Total 2.5

2 Celia, Jim O’Connor, Total 5

3 Mystery, Any club member, Total 5.5

4 Mystery II, Any club member, Total 7

5 No Ka Oi, Lori Romano, Total 11T

6 Fairwind, Skipper Tim Bercovitz, Total 11T

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..


Perfect beachfront

Perfect beachfront.jpg SNN 5.20

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Photo by Stan Sievers (Instagram @stansievers)

At day’s end, high tide leaves the beachfront pristine


27th Annual Balboa Island Artwalk announces winners

It was a day of art, music, sun, and fun at the 27th Annual Balboa Island Artwalk presented by Mary Hardesty Realty. Eighty-five artists exhibited paintings, hand-crafted jewelry, blown glass, sculpture and photography along the South Bayfront Promenade. Hundreds of visitors enjoyed the fine art show complemented by live music on three stages along the walk.

Thank you to all of the 2022 Balboa Island Artwalk’s sponsors, artists and friends for making the show a tremendous success! They look forward to seeing you in May 2023 for the 28th Annual Balboa Island Artwalk.

For more information, visit www.balboaislandartwalk.info.

Congratulations to all these 2022 Artist Award winners.

–Mary Hardesty Realty Award of Excellence: Andrea Morales & Camille Petty, hand-crafted jewelry

27th Annual Balboa Morales and Huse

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Photos courtesy of the Balboa Island Artwalk

(L-R) Debra Huse, artist Andrea Morales and Mary Hardesty with Erika Primeau, Mary Hardesty Realty

27th Annual Balboa bracelet

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Hand-crafted Mermaid Bracelet by Andrea Morales and Camille Petty

–Mayor’s Choice Award: Jolly Kornicks, watercolor artist

27th Annual Balboa Muldoon and Kornicks

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Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon with artist Jolly Kornicks

27th Annual Balboa Kornicks Mums

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“Mums the Word,” an original watercolor by Jolly Kornicks

–Huse Skelly Gallery Art Star Award: Gia Moody, oil painter

27th Annual Balboa Moody

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(L-R) Debra Huse, artist Gia Moody and Lisa Skelly

27th Annual Balboa Moody Aliso Creek Wave

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“Aliso Creek Wave,” an original oil painting by Gia Moody 

–Randy Higbee Gallery Awards: Kat Bauer, oil painter; Denise Busony, oil painter and Karen Murphy, colored pencil artist

27th Annual Balboa Bauer

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(L-R) Terry DiLisi of Randy Higbee Gallery with artist Kat Bauer

27th Annual Balboa Bauer Beach Bonanza

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“Beach Bonanza,” an original oil painting by Kat Bauer

27th Annual Balboa Busony

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(L-R) Artist Denise Busony and Terry DiLisi

27th Annual Balboa Busony Gypsy Soul

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“Gypsy Soul,” an original oil painting by Denise Busony 

27th Annual Balboa Murphy

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(L-R) Terry DiLisi with artist Karen Murphy

27th Annual Balboa Murphy pet portrait

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Original colored pencil pet portrait by Karen Murphy


Weather is good and surf is up!

Weather is good and surf is up!.jpg SNN 5.17

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Photo by Stan Sievers (Instagram @stansievers)

On a beautiful day, surfers enter the line-up awaiting that perfect wave


Seclusion

Seclusion.png SNN 5.17

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

The drone captures this secluded piece of paradise


Regattas and Races…

Regattas and Races 5.17

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

NHYC 

Finn Fleet Measurers Cup

May 14-15

Finn (7 races, 1 discard)

c1 Bob Martin, MBYC, Total 13, Net 9

2 Chris Raab, NHYC, Total 22, Net 15

3 Phil Ramming, NHYC, Total 28, Net 21

4 Robert Kinney, NHYC, Total 33, Net 25

5 Darrell Peck, CGRA, Total 39, Net 31

6 Henry W. Sprague III, Red Wolf YC, Total 47, Net 35

7 Brady Kennedy, NHYC, Total 47, Net 36

8 Paul Marshall, NHYC, Total 58, Net 46

9 Lee Hope, SDYC, Total 56, Net 46

10 David Wood, NHYC, Total 68, Net 55

11 Steve Brown, BCYC, Total 70, Net 58

12 Keith Yonkers, NHYC, Total 74, Net 61

13 Brad Dwan, NHYC, Total 79, Net 66

14 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 89, Net 75

15 Mike Kennedy, BYC, Total 89, Net 75

BCYC

2022 Lorin Weiss Series

May 15

Harbor 20 A (5 races, 1 discard)

1 Shana’s Secret, Thompson/Conzelman, BCYC, Total 6, Series Total 31

2 Ping, K. Wiese/A. Wiese, NHYC, Total 10, Series Total 40

3 Only Child, Bose/Elliot, BCYC, Total 10, Series Total 41

4 Dragon Lady, E. Kimbell/A. Kimball, ABYC, Total 11, Series Total 49

5 Jubilee, Yates/Kincaid, NHYC, Total 18, Series Total 51

6 Downhill, Gloege/Hall, NHYC, Total 24, Series Total 71

7 Rascal II, Madigan/Kate, NHYC, Total 24, Series Total 80

8 Summer Dream, Tucker Cheadle, BYC, Total 24, Series Total 68

9 Adrenalin, Noring/Foy, SBYC, Total 24, Series Total 66

10 No Travel Required, Campbell/Barnard, NHYC, Total 24, Series Total 37

Harbor 20 B (5 races, 1 discard)

1 Sail Dates, T. Corkett/T. Corkett Jr., NHYC, Total 6, Series Total 41

2 Hula Girl, Hill/Zee, BCYC, Total 7, Series Total 23

3 Spirit, D. Haynes/P. Haynes, BCYC, Total 8, Series Total 48

4 Sailin’ Win, Win Fuller, NHYC, Total 16, Series Total 66

5 Mili’Apa, Watanabe/Sutherland, UCISA, Total 16, Series Total 56

6 Tiger, Bubb/Wiley, NHYC, Total 16, Series Total 46

7 Chloe, Campbell/Stratman, BYC, Total 16, Series Total 55

8 Aquavit, David Camerini, UCISA, Total 16, Series Total 27

Harbor 20 C (5 races, 1 discard)

1 Whatever, Hurlinan/Fischbacher, SBYC, Total 5, Series Total 15

8 Aquavit, David Camerini, UCISA, Total 6, Series Total 38

3 Kalani, Ibbetson/Thornton, SYC, Total 12, Series Total 44

2 Secondhand Smoke, Kennedy/Newman, EYC, Total 12, Series Total 28

4 Cookie Monster, S. Schock/R. Schock, BCYC, Total 12, Series Total 32

5 SkipHer, DeRosa/Paige, BYC, Total 12, Series Total 38

BYC 

2022 Beercans – Ale (May) Series

May 12

Race #1 – PHRF 1 (4.5 miles)

1 Amante, Choate 48, Richley Family, LIYC/NHYC 

   Elapsed 0:48:24, Corrected 0:45:29

2 It’s Ok, Andrews 49.9, Tom Purcell/Andy Rose, BYC 

   Elapsed 0:43:10, Corrected 0:46:46

3 Heartbeat 4, J124, Charles Brewer, NHYC 

   Elapsed 0:50:38, Corrected 0:47:43

4 Baraka, J120, Janet Mostafa, BYC 

   Elapsed 0:53:19, Corrected 0:50:24

5 Rossa, DK46, Jared Gargano, BYC

   Elapsed 0:50:38, Corrected 0:51:19

6 L30 #29, L30, Charles Ullman, BYC 

   Elapsed 1:00:28, Corrected 0:57:33

Race #1 – PHRF 2 (4.5 miles)

1 Violetta, Davidson, Jane Hartley, BCYC 

   Elapsed 1:00:17, Corrected 0:53:05

2 Cal 40, Cal 40, Vince Valdes, NHYC 

   Elapsed 1:02:37, Corrected 0:54:04

3 XLR8, Bene 36.7, Gabriel Nistor, BCYC 

   Elapsed 1:00:38, Corrected 0:53:34

4 Ralphie, Cal 40, Pillsbury Family, StFYC 

   Elapsed 1:04:59, Corrected 0:56:26

5 Buena Vista, RS21, Berkeley Green, ALYC

   Elapsed 1:06:21, Corrected 0:57:48

Race #1 – PHRF 3 (3.8 miles)

1 Silk, Harbor 25, John Hanscom, SSYC 

   Elapsed 1:09:26, Corrected 0:58:36

NHYC 

2022 Twilight Series - May

May 12

Finn (6 races, 1 discard)

1 Robert Kinney, NHYC, Total 11, Net 8

2 Sail #35, n/a, Total 16, Net 12

3 Brad Dwan, NHYC, Total 17, Net 13

4 Keith Yonkers, NHYC, Total 17, Net 13

5 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 24, Net 20

Harbor 20 A (4 races)

1 K. Wiese/A. Wiese, NHYC, Total 8

2 Bose/Elliot, BCYC, Total 8

3 Deermount/Menninger, NHYC, Total 16

4 Peter Stemler, NHYC, Total 20

5 Douglas Rastello, NHYC, Total 20

6 Conzelman/Law, NHYC, Total 21

7 Peter Kinney, NHYC, Total 23

8 Bob Yates, NHYC, Total 25

9 E. Kimball/A. Costello Kimball, ABYC, Total 25

10 Campbell/Barnard, NHYC, Total 28

11 Nick Madigan, NHYC, Total 28

12 Cheadle/Schupak, BYC, Total 28

Harbor 20 B (4 races)

1 P. Haynes/D. Haynes, BCYC, Total 6

2 Tom Fischbacher, BSSB, Total 11

3 Sail # 203, n/a, Total 11

4 Hill/Manning, BCYC, Total 12

5 Watanabe/Sutherland, UCISA, Total 19

6 Dick Somers, NHYC, Total 19

7 Thomas Corkett, NHYC, Total 22

Harbor 20 C (4 races)

1 Atkins/Thompson, LIYC, Total 5

2 Chris Jester, NHYC, Total 7

3 Bill Brooks, NHYC, Total 12

4 C. Bailey/J. Bailey, NHYC, Total 12

Lehman 12 (6 races, 1 discard)

1 La Dow/Dahl, NHYC, Total 11, Net 7

2 Carolyn Smith, NHYC, Total 23, Net 17

3 Michael Ramming, NHYC, Total 26, Net 20

4 M. Dahl/H. Dahl, NHYC, Total 27, Net 20

5 Curtiss/Moore, NHYC, Total 29, Net 21

6 Sail # 2017, NHYC, Total 35, Net 27

7 Clark/Olmstead, NHYC, Total 34, Net 27

8 La Dow/Hampton, NHYC/SDYC, Total 34, Net 27

9 Macdonald/Blackman, NHYC, Total 39, Net 32

10 Benny Benjamin, NHYC, Total 45, Net 37

11 Hause/Kraus, NHYC, Total 45, Net 37 

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..


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members:

The proposed annual budget for Fiscal Year 2022-23 is now online for public review. The proposed budget is balanced with a strong projected surplus of revenues over expenses, enhances funding for building replacement and maintenance and increases the speed of the city’s paydown of unfunded liabilities. The total operating budget is expected to be $331 million, with a record additional $71 million of funding for capital improvement projects included in the capital budget. 

Highlights of the proposed budget include: 

–A General Fund budget of $276 million, which reflects a full rebound from the pandemic and a return to the city’s historical trendline of revenue growth.

–$71 million in proposed spending for capital projects, a figure that includes $26 million from the Fiscal Year 2020-21 year-end surplus and $10 million of America Rescue Plan Act funds from the federal government. These funds will be utilized to fully fund several significant projects, including the Library Lecture Hall, Junior Lifeguard Building and phase one of the Balboa Island drainage improvement project.

–Increased property tax revenue, which is projected to grow by 6.4% to a record $131 million, primarily driven by median home prices now exceeding $3 million and higher assessed values as homes are sold.

–Stronger sales tax revenue, projected to grow by 5.3% to a record $45 million, primarily driven by auto sales, and record revenues from retail stores and restaurants.

–A rebound in hotel tax revenue, which is projected to grow by 8.7% to a record $27.8 million, reflecting higher rates and occupancy levels in hotels and short-term residential rentals.

–An increase in the budgeted payment toward the city’s unfunded pension liability from $35 million to $40 million. This puts the city on track to eliminate the liability in six years.

–The budget also funds a continuation of the Be Well OC mobile mental health services, body-worn cameras for the Police Department, new alerting and vehicle ventilation systems for the Fire Department, sand management equipment for city beaches and additional funding for building maintenance.

The City Council will discuss the budget, along with possible uses for unallocated surplus funds, at its May 24 meeting, prior to adoption in June. 

City Manager, Grace K. Leung

See the full budget proposal

City Installs Newport Harbor’s First “Human Lift” for Disabled Boaters at Marina Park

Newport Harbor’s first human lift, designed to expand access for disabled boaters, is now operational at the Marina Park public docks, 1600 W. Balboa Blvd. City officials gathered informally on Thursday, May 12 to view a demonstration of the lift and commemorate the project launch.

The equipment installation was completed in April and is now available for public use upon request, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. daily. To request use of the lift, visitors can call the Harbor Department at 949.270.8159 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The lift can be used for transferring someone from the dock at the base of the gangway at Marina Park to a variety of marine craft including a small sailboat (less than 22’), a small powerboat, or kayak. The equipment can lower or raise someone from the dock down to the water level. Click here for more information.

NBFD Provides Mutual Aid in Laguna Niguel Fire

This week, the Newport Beach Fire Department assisted with the Coastal Fire in Laguna Niguel. On Wednesday, May 11 in the late afternoon, the NBFD sent five fire engines  to assist with the growing wildland fire and protect structures. Fire crews from several other Orange County cities backfilled Newport Beach fire stations until off-duty city firefighters could arrive. 

One NBFD engine crew was removed from the incident Wednesday after a firefighter was injured; fortunately, the firefighter was released the next day from Hoag Hospital and is doing well. As of Friday (May 13), the fire was 25% contained after consuming 200 acres, destroying 20 homes and damaging 11 others. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

To help fight the Coastal Fire, the NBFD deployed one of two new fire engines that had just been put into service on Monday, May 9. These new engines are serving the community from the Lido Station No. 2 and the Fashion Island Station No. 3. 

Drought Watch: Recycled Water To Irrigate Jamboree Road Median

As part of the city’s ongoing effort to conserve water amid the California drought, recycled water will soon be used to irrigate the Jamboree Road median between Santa Barbara Drive and Back Bay Drive. As part of a larger paving and concrete replacement project, the existing potable irrigation system will be removed and a new recycled water irrigation system will be installed. The project is now underway and is expected to be completed by August.

The city will re-landscape the median with various types of drought-tolerant plants, which were selected to match the existing median landscaping between East Coast Highway and Back Bay Drive. The city is preparing to undertake additional projects in the coming months to beautify our community and save water as drought conditions worsen throughout California.

Treasury Report Available for Public Review

The March 2022 Treasury Report is available on the city’s website at www.newportbeachca.gov/treasury.

As of March, the city’s portfolio totaled about $344.8 million. Approximately $45.5 million of the portfolio was invested in very liquid investments available for day-to-day operations and major construction expenditures.

The short-term portfolio ($266.3 million) had a weighted average effective maturity of 1.78 years. The trailing 12 months’ total return was -2.57%. Our benchmark for the same period, the ICE B of A 1-3 Year Treasury index, returned -2.84%. The income-return on the portfolio, a better measure of income earned from the portfolio, was 1.31%.

Rotary, City Team up for Arroyo Park Planting

On April 30, the city partnered with the Newport-Irvine Rotary Club for a planting event at Arroyo Park. More than 60 volunteers and city staff planted approximately 450 California native plants and trees along the trailhead running along Bonita Creek to Old Ford Road. More than half of the plant material was donated by Shadetree Nursery.

City staff helped prepare for the event by removing invasive plants and weeds in the area and extending the park’s irrigation system. This project is sure to put a smile on the faces of the many hikers and mountain bikers who use the trail and park daily.

Public Works Springs Into Summer Beach Mode Part 3: Preparing for the Grunion Run

In addition to getting Newport Beach ready for an influx of summer visitors, the city Public Works crews are also preparing for the return of another seasonal visitor – the grunion.

Grunion, a species of marine fish, come up on the beaches along the peninsula to lay their eggs at the highest tide line. The grunion season will run until September 1. 

Our maintenance vehicles and grooming equipment operators stay away from the intertidal area as grunion eggs may be present under the sand. It is early in the season and grunion may run on any of the nights in our beach. Keep your eyes and hands open, as grunion may be picked up with bare hands only – no gear. A fishing license is required to gather grunion for anyone 16 years or older. More information can be found at www.Grunion.org.

Additionally, as we are switching gears from winter to summer beach area operations, a tremendous amount of time and energy is spent throughout the Public Works Department on proactive efforts to identify and address issues and potential problems ahead of time, order needed supplies and equipment, hire and add additional part-time staff, and more, in an effort to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for our residents and visitors alike.

During the summer months, Public Works and our contractors greatly increase the level of services such as the cleaning of all our public restrooms, the frequency of scheduled trash can service, litter pickup on the beaches, street and parking lots, cleaning of sidewalks, signs and street furniture and more. Routine inspections are conducted including checking for overall cleanliness, clearing sinks and floor drains, and ensuring toilets and amenities are functioning properly. There is also an increase in the volume of customer calls related to summer activities, and a corresponding increase in the amount of time and staff dedicated to responding to summer issues that arise.

Reduce Water Use Through These Simple Tips

In response to continued drought conditions, we are continuing to ask residents and businesses to reduce water wherever possible.

Future mandated drought water restrictions are very likely and we are awaiting further information from the state. 

In the meantime, the city suggests that you review your outdoor water use for landscaping.

–Do you see water running down the gutter after your sprinklers go on?

–Are your sprinklers over-spraying onto your driveway and sidewalk?

–Do you hear a “squish” sound when you walk on your grass after watering?

–Have you talked to your gardener about reducing your water use?

–Did you know if you reduce your outdoor watering time by one minute on a five-minute watering cycle, you’ll use 20% less water?

For water saving programs and rebates, visit www.ocwatersmart.com. If you would like a free inspection or review from our Utilities Department staff regarding your water use, feel free to contact us at 949.644.3011.

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team is now operating in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to mental and behavioral health crises. The mobile unit is staffed with mental health specialists and EMTs, and works closely with the city’s police and fire departments.

This past week the Be Well team: 

–Transported two people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter.

–Transported a person to a crisis stabilization unit for treatment.

–Provided First Aid to three people experiencing homelessness.

–Conducted 44 outreach interactions with residents and people experiencing homelessness.

Homelessness Update

The City of Newport Beach provides a comprehensive response to address homelessness through a coordinated effort by city staff, contractors, partner agencies and nonprofit groups.

Last week the city’s homeless outreach and response teams: 

–Reunified a woman with her family in Arizona.

–Secured permanent housing for two women who experienced homelessness in Newport Beach. One had been homeless for seven years; the other for five years.

–Transported two unsheltered people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter for temporary housing and services. As of this week, 18 people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the facility.

–Assisted five clients matched to Emergency Housing Vouchers with housing applications.

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

This Week’s Events

Monday, May 16

Board of Library Trustees Meeting

Central Library

1000 Avocado Ave. – 5 p.m.

Aviation Committee Meeting

Civic Center Community Room

100 Civic Center Drive – 5 p.m.

Tuesday, May 17

Harbor Commission Subcommittee Stakeholder Meeting on Floats and Lifts

Marina Park Community Center

1600 W. Balboa Blvd. – 5 p.m.

See Full Schedule

Editor’s Note: City Manager’s Updates was received Friday, May 13 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Police & Fire hosted Public Safety Day with fun activities, live demos and station tours

Photos by Lana Johnson

The Newport Beach Police Department and Fire Department hosted Public Safety Day on Sunday, May 15 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. in the parking lot at 870 Santa Barbara Drive. The day featured live police and fire demonstrations, along with station tours.

Police & Fire Tours at Station 3

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Tours were conducted at Newport Beach Fire Station #3

The day’s activities include presentations by the lifeguards, SWAT, the paramedics, CSI, CERT, the K9 unit, dispatch, the mounted unit, animal control and fire & crime prevention. There was also face painting, food and much more.

Police & Fire Stapleton and Boyles

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(L-R) Joe Stapleton with Newport Beach Fire Chief Jeff Boyles

Police & Fire Kid on NBPD motorcycle

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Dressed in firefighter gear, this youngster “revs it up” on a Newport Beach Police motorcycle

Police & Fire SWAT vehicle

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Checking out the SWAT vehicle

Police & Fire SWAT kids

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Newport Beach SWAT officers pose with face-painted kids

Police & Fire kid in fire engine

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This youngster is thrilled to be inside the cab of a NBFD engine

Police & Fire ladder truck

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The Newport Beach fire truck with its aerial ladder is a crowd favorite

Police & Fire Valerie and Ed

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Newport Beach Police Department Animal Control Supervisor Valerie Schomburg with Officer Bubbles and Ed Olen

Police & Fire kids at booth

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“Future firefighters” visit the Newport Beach Police Department booth

Police & Fire CERT

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This CERT representative was on hand to provide information and answer questions about disaster preparedness

Police & Fire NBJG

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The Newport Beach Junior Lifeguards manned an interactive booth and shared information on water safety


Update on the residential refuse program roll-out

By SARA HALL

City staff provided an update on the rollout of the new residential refuse organic collection program at the May 10 City Council study session.

The team has done an exceptional job for such a difficult task, said Councilmember Brad Avery.

“A roll-out like this – a city of this size, so many folks involved, a lot of moving parts – I just thought it went really well,” Avery said. “Of course it was difficult the first month or so, but it’s definitely smoothing out.”

Councilmember Diane Dixon noted that she’s heard a lot less, very few if any, concerns.

“The roll-out seems to be proceeding on a good basis,” she said.

There were several challenging route changes, noted Deputy Director of Public Works Micah Martin, but that was to optimize the fleet and minimize the number of trucks on the road.

“The route changes were painful, but it turned out to be a good result because we’ve been able to keep our fleet at a minimum,” he said.

The fleet is newer and, actually, has one less vehicle in the city, confirmed CR&R Senior Sustainability Manager Hashem Shokair.

The contract required new vehicles, so CR&R essentially bought a new fleet for the service, explained Public Works Director Dave Webb.

City Council voted 7-0 on January 11 and approved a new, eight-year agreement with the city’s trash and recycling contractor, CR&R.

The city’s residential waste collection program was modified to meet recent changes in state law. Among other requirements, the new law mandates that all jurisdictions provide organic waste collection services.

To meet this directive, the city is implementing a “three-cart, source-separated, collection program for solid waste, mixed recyclables and organic waste recycling, which includes food waste and landscaping waste items.”

As of mid-April, all residential households served by this contract – approximately 29,000 homes, now have the three-cart system, Martin noted.

The three split-body trucks are also fully deployed now, Martin noted. The new trucks are for collection in space confined areas, like the Balboa Peninsula or Balboa Island, and collect both organics and recycling in one pass. They are rear-loading with two people working it (one driving and one walking behind placing the carts on the system), he explained.

“(The three split-body trucks) are unique to the city and, actually, to all of Orange County and most of Southern California,” Martin said.

update on the residential CR&R split body truck

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

A new CR&R split-body truck in Newport Beach

The next area of focus is “right-sizing” the carts for residents, he said, to ensure they are providing the right number and size of carts for their household needs. That will take a few weeks to complete, he added.

City staff is also focusing on distributing kitchen pails, which are an enhancement to the residential organics program. It’s an optional program, Martin noted, although it’s not required, they offer it to all residents. To date, more than 1,300 pails have been distributed and hundreds more are being staged for delivery.

There are also a number of ancillary services available, Martin said.

“This was just to add an additional level of service to residents who want or desire what’s above and beyond our standard cart service,” Martin said.

Services include: An extra cart charge for additional carts beyond the city’s free allowance; non-containerization charge of a $2.47 fee for each instance after the first documented warning; and a valet service that includes picking up carts anywhere beyond the eight feet (and returning them to the same location).

If signed up for the optional valet program, it also includes picking up the carts next to the home when a resident forgets to put them out, Martin confirmed. It’s also free for disabled residents.

CR&R was originally going to start charging for the ancillary services on April 1, but due to continued service issues, supply chain delays and the need for additional communication with residents on extra charges, CR&R has agreed to extend the start date for these service charges to July 1 (without charge to the city or residents).

They’ve also worked on a comprehensive outreach and education program, Martin said, that has included multiple news stories, social media campaigns, YouTube videos, newspaper ads, utility bill inserts, direct mailers, letters and a recycling guide. Staff has also updated the website, included information in the Newport Navigator and the Week in Review.

“We’ll continue that until this roll-out is fully complete.

CR&R conducted a quarterly contamination audit in March in the Westcliff neighborhood, one of the first areas to get the three-cart system. They reviewed 1,088 households for trash, recycling and organics contamination per state regulations, Martin explained. The study found 35% contamination of trash, 35% in recyclables and 24% in organics. The state goal is less than 25% in each stream.

“We actually are doing pretty good on our numbers,” Martin said. “We still have a little bit of work to do there. But our first go-around at this, we’re happy with those numbers.”

The most common item found in the wrong cart are the “mixed material” items, Shokair said. Items that have two materials, like plastic and metal, combined in one item are very difficult to recycle and should be placed in the trash, he noted.

Another commonly misplaced item is plastic film (items wrapped in flimsy plastic like chip bags, resealable food storage bags, the plastic film that covers home dinner meals, etc.), which is not recyclable, Shokair added.

To help keep residents on track, CR&R will place a hangtag that explains how to correctly separate each stream when they find mixed materials in the same cart. It’s a reminder they can use to address the resident directly, Martin said.

Martin also reminded residents of best practices, including breaking down all boxes and putting them in the blue recycle cart and placing green waste and food scraps in the green organics cart.

Avery noted a lot of houses in his neighborhood have boxes that aren’t broken down in the cart.

The first response would be the hangtag, Martin noted. If there’s failure to correct the action after multiple reminders, the resident will get charged with a non-containerization fee. If it comes down to it, there is also an enforcement mechanism as well, he explained. The goal is to help educate people on what to do so it doesn’t come to that, he added.

Answering a council question regarding comments from residents that they’ve seen multiple carts be emptied into the same truck, Martin noted that the split-body trucks collect multiple carts. And if an organics cart is contaminated with cardboard, for example, it could look like the wrong cart is going in the wrong truck, he said.

Some of the complaints they’ve heard are in the narrow alleys, Webb added, which would be the split-body trucks.

Some residents may not be accustomed to a split-body truck, Shokair agreed.

“We do not co-mingle and it is part of our driver training,” he confirmed.

In areas that use side-loader trucks, any identified situation where the driver is collecting multiple carts is addressed directly by CR&R and there is reprimanding, Shokair added. They work closely with the city and will investigate it immediately, he confirmed.

The cart should be collected regardless of the fill level, Shokair said, answering another council question.

The goal is to ensure the drivers don’t have to get out of the truck to load the carts, Martin said. It’s ok if the lid isn’t completely flat, but the items are still contained within the cart. It’s a problem if it’s sticking out so much that when the cart is tipped up to be emptied and trash falls out, he explained.

For any refuse-related questions or comments, residents can call the dedicated Newport Beach line at 949.667.4158.

~~~~~~~~

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


City of Hope Orange County and Lowe’s invited cancer patients to plant first seeds of hope at healing garden of new cancer campus

City of Hope Orange County and Lowe’s invited patients and others impacted by cancer to help plant the gardens surrounding the Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County, opening in Irvine this year.

The May 11 planting celebration, made possible through a $1 million donation from Lowe’s, was a day of unity to honor those affected by cancer and express shared optimism about ending the disease once and for all.

City of Hope Dr. Krishnan

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Photos courtesy of City of Hope Orange County

Dr. Amrita Krishnan (left) plants with her patient Donna McNutt (right), who receives care at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island

One in three Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.  City of Hope understands the immense toll of a cancer diagnosis and has intentionally designed its Orange County campus around its patients, recognizing the need for advanced treatments, integrated therapies and compassion through each step of the cancer journey.

City of Hope Annette

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(L-R) Lori Crevda, planting for her daughter who passed away from cancer, with City of Hope Orange County President Annette Walker in the healing garden

“We are grateful to Lowe’s, a strong supporter of Orange County and communities across the country, for their generous donation that will benefit generations of patients and their families,” said Annette M. Walker, president, City of Hope Orange County. “Philanthropy holds tremendous power in speeding cancer care innovation. When we plant this garden with our partners from Lowe’s and members of our community, we show the world that we are launching new whole-person care for our patients. At City of Hope, we believe that healing the mind, soul and spirit is just as important as the world-renowned expertise, lifesaving treatments and pioneering research that heal the body.”

City of Hope Wishing Tree

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Guests hang tags on a Wishing Tree at Lennar Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County, opening in Irvine this year

All the plants, shrubs and perennials were purposely chosen with some selected based on their potential medicinal value.

To learn more about the event and the healing garden, visit www.HopeGrowsInOC.org.


School Notes

After putting in the work, CdM’s Speech, Debate and Model UN Team receives 2022 Civic Learning Award of Excellence

The Speech, Debate and Model United Nations Team from Corona del Mar High School (CdM) received the 2022 Civic Learning Award of Excellence. The award is co-sponsored by Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond and identifies models in public schools that engage youth in learning about civics.

The CdM team includes more than 80 students throughout the combined middle and high school campus and provides them greater opportunities to become involved and make change in their school and community. Part of their work is to become more politically informed and internationally conscious, as they develop their knowledge of local, regional, national and international laws and government. 

School Notes student group

Courtesy of NMUSD

CdM’s award-winning Speech, Debate and Model United Nations Team

They also work to enhance their public speaking skills and help foster civic engagement among all students on campus with an elected student executive board directing the team, members alternate being the main speaker, facilitating “thought talks” and serving as moderators.

“I am proud of our team,” said Laura Mayberry, CdM teacher and team coach. “The work they have done to elevate knowledge, increase civic engagement, and promote positive and productive discourse has had a tremendous impact on not only the team but on our campus and in our community.”

CdM has had a Speech, Debate, Model UN Team for more than 16 years with this being their first Civic Learning Award for their work on a comprehensive civic engagement program that includes:

International Civic Engagement & Participation

Students attended myriad of conferences including the Model United Nations and Junior State of America. Both conferences provided instruction in governmental processes including law making, discussions and diplomacy, as well as various governing styles. This helped students understand law, politics and contemporary issues. 

In preparation for the Model UN, students researched issues that the UN is currently working to address. They learned how international organizations like the UN operate and coordinate to reach consensus. 

During the conference, students used their knowledge and virtually acted as ambassadors at the United Nations working through pressing issues, such as child disarmament and the conflict in Myanmar. 

These experiences allowed students to learn about styles of government, policies and international relations. As a result, students learned about laws that would otherwise have been unfamiliar to them.

Notably, team members gained fundamental knowledge in the art of diplomacy through meaningful exchanges between delegates and ultimately coming to a resolution. By practicing diplomacy at Model UN, students became more knowledgeable and experienced on how to tactfully negotiate in government settings.

Local Government Participation

The CdM Speech and Debate Team hosted local and state speakers, attended conferences, and wrote letters to their representatives about topics that they valued, such as the environment, immigration, civil rights, the economy and international issues.

Students wrote school district leaders and school board trustees and spoke at board meetings in support of a hybrid learning environment during the 2020-21 school year. They advocated for families to have the choice to return to in-person instruction or remain online during the pandemic when most schools were fully distance learning. 

School board members also served as guest speakers and shared information about school operations and the reasoning behind district decisions. This prompted deeper discussions and provided feedback directly to the decision makers. The CdM team actively encouraged district leadership to consider moving the school start date earlier. 

City Government Participation

Students attended Newport Beach City Council meetings where they learned about local issues and engaged in local decision-making processes. They shared opinions about local issues that impacted them directly, such as keeping the bonfire pits open at local beaches. 

School Involvement

Team members are involved in several school-wide leadership organizations. They work to encourage all students to participate in school governance, campus clubs, and organizations that have an impact on their day-to-day lives and serve as a catalyst for future involvement in local or national government. 

The CdM team is involved in a multitude of activities on campus including Mock Trial, National Honor Society, Peer Assistance Leadership and Human Relations Council which allows for representation in diversity of thoughts, opinions, and viewpoints when team members are debating and voicing their opinions.

This is the 10th year for the Civic Learning Awards program, which includes three categories for awards including Merit, Distinction and Excellence; with Excellence being the highest honor going to the CdM team. 

Way to go Sea Kings!


City installs Newport Harbor’s first “human lift” for disabled boaters

Newport Harbor’s first human lift, designed to expand access for disabled boaters, is now operational at the Marina Park public docks, 1600 W. Balboa Blvd., Balboa.

City officials gathered informally on Thursday, May 12 to view a demonstration of the lift and commemorate the project launch. 

City installs council

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Photos courtesy of City of Newport Beach

(L-R) Newport Beach Councilmembers Joy Brenner and Diane Dixon, Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon with Harbor Department personnel

“This lift, the first of its kind in Newport Beach, will create a more inclusive and welcoming harbor for residents and visitors with disabilities,” said Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon. “It fits perfectly with our goal of making harbor activities such as boating, sailing and kayaking more accessible to everyone.” 

The equipment installation was completed in April and is now available for public use upon request, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. daily. To request use of the lift, visitors can call the Harbor Department at 949.270.8159, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

City installs lift

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The human lift can transfer a disabled person from the dock to an adjacent watercraft 

The lift can be used for transferring someone from the dock at the base of the gangway at Marina Park to a variety of marine craft including a small sailboat (less than 22’), a small powerboat, or kayak. The equipment can lower or raise someone from the dock down to the water level.

The $3,000 device, a Reliant 450 lift from Invacare Corp. required a complex custom installation by Swift Slip Dock & Pier Builders at a cost of about $5,000.

In addition to use by individual boaters, the city plans to incorporate use of the new human lift into an adaptive sailing program for disabled boaters of all ages. The city has purchased two RS Venture sailboats, which will be modified with adaptive equipment for people with disabilities.


Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach members enjoy Cinco de May cruise 

Members of the Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach celebrated Cinco de Mayo with a ferry cruise graciously sponsored by Seymour Beek. Members made merriment with food catered by Iron Catering and imbibed on beverages provided by David Beek of Island Marine Fuel. Mariachis provided entertainment from the dock before the ferry launched with 80 passengers to cruise the bay for an hour and a half.

Balboa Island Museum Ray and Pepys

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Photos courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

(L-R) Janet Ray and Shirley Pepys

Balboa Island Museum Pepys and Beek

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(L-R) Noel Pepys and David Beek

Balboa Island Museum Howard and Castanon

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(L-R) Lynn Howard and Paula Castanon

The evening was also sponsored by Museum members Barbara and Dan Abbott; Board President Paula Castanon; Museum Founder and Board Chair Shirley Pepys; Carole and Ron Cassell; Patti and Terry Janssen; United American Mortgage; Elizabeth Burns; Sue Sibley and Scott Sibley; Rick and Jo Ellen Heck; Erin and Jim Moloney; Laurie and Doug Sloan; the Allen Family; Kelly Couzens-Brooks and Michael Brooks; Georgie and Dick Fenton and Janet and Walkie Ray.

Balboa Island Museum Maloney, Ray, Maloney

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(L-R) Jim Maloney, Walkie Ray and Erin Maloney

Balboa Island Museum Cinco de Mayo buffet

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Cinco de Mayo buffet aboard the ferry


25th Annual Newport Harbor Home & Garden Tour sells out, raises $180,000 for NHHS

Photos by Lana Johnson

On Thursday, May 12, the 25th Annual Newport Harbor Home & Garden Tour took place, presented by Barclay Butera Interiors and Arbor Real Estate as the Realty sponsor – and the event sold out weeks in advance. This year’s Home Your co-chairs were Karen Taylor and Pam Hardenbergh.

25th Annual Barclay and co chairs

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(L-R) Presenting Sponsor Barclay Butera of Barclay Butera Interiors with Home Tour Co-chairs Karen Taylor and Pam Hardenbergh at the afternoon reception 

Hosted by the Newport Harbor Educational Foundation, seven beautiful homes were showcased in Newport Beach and Costa Mesa. The day kicked off with a morning reception at Greenleaf Kitchen + Cocktails, touring of the homes throughout the day, the luncheon venue at Newport Theatre Arts Center featuring a delicious catered lunch by Plums Café + Catering and 20+ specialty boutiques by local vendors along with opportunity drawings. A refreshment stop was provided at Molly Wood Garden Design, with the day culminating at an afternoon reception, sponsored by PIRCH, at Barclay Butera Interiors in Westcliff providing refreshing libations amid the lively camaraderie.

25th Annual trio

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(L-R) Home Tour Designer Liaison Gina Donald, Co-chair Karen Taylor and Newport Harbor Educational Foundation Executive Director Diana Long at the Newport Theatre Arts Center luncheon venue

25th Annual Backhouse

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(L-R) Amra Burton and Ruby Trestik with their Backhouse Fragrances homemade candles

25th Annual Blue Atlas

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 (L-R) Eleanor Bush, Brigit Morris and Liz Canady, Blue Atlas Marketplace

25th Annual Blue Skies

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Sobia Manji of Blue Skies

25th Annual Heirloom

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(L-R) Brianna Covey and Amber Hage of Heirloom, located in Westcliff 

25th Annual Pinkside

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Robin Davis of Pinkside, whose studio is located on Lido

25th Annual Social Butterfly

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Jana Anderson hosts the Social Butterfly Designs booth

25th Annual Studio SUZAN

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Suzan Zahedi of Studio SUZAN with her jewelry creations 

Homes by featured designers on this year’s tour included The PRAIRIE House by PRAIRIE (Owner Shannon McLaren), The Collector’s Modern (Homeowner and Interior Designer Nadia Barienbrock), Lido Point Home (Interior Designer Wendy Blackband, Blackband Design), New Twist on the Modern Farmhouse (Interior Designer Crista Nodland, Coastal Interiors), Splendor on the Bay (Interior Designer Colette Luesebrink, CL Design), Modern Spanish Charm (Interior Designer Rona Graf, Grace Blu Interior Design) and Napa in Newport (Interior Designer Brooke Wagner, Brooke Wagner Design).

25th Annual luncheon

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Home Tour attendees enjoying a catered lunch by Plums Café + Catering on Cliff Drive overlooking Newport Harbor

Monies raised were $180,000 for the best year ever! Proceeds from the day benefit the 2,500 students attending Newport Harbor High School for educational funding. For more information, visit www.newportharborhometour.com.

25th Annual reception

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Enjoying the afternoon reception at Barclay Butera Interiors

25th Annual bar

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Rochelle Palipchak and Steve Coto at the Barclay Butera outdoor bar

Stu News was proud to be a Media Sponsor for this year’s Newport Harbor Home & Garden Tour.


A different kind of hero: Four boats honoring Newport Harbor’s sailing history

By DUNCAN FORGEY

As young baby boomers in SoCal, we had plenty of heroes to emulate. Don Drysdale, Mickey Mantle, Wilt Chamberlain, Arnold Palmer and Billie Jean King, were just a few. We tossed the Fearsome Foursome, Big O, the Bird, Earl the Pearl, The Babe, Iron Horse, Wilma Rudolf, Jesse Owens and Duke Kahanamoku’s names around the playground like they were lifelong friends.

But when Newport’s youth entered the waters of Newport Harbor, a whole new list of heroes swirled in our heads. Burke Sawyer, Tom Shock, Don Edler, Jim Warmington, Dick Deaver, Bill Ficker, Henry Sprague, Nina Nielson, Dave Ullman, Dennis Durgan, George Twist and Tom Shock were bigger than life locals that we aspired to emulate. 

A different kind Transpac

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Courtesy of Scott Varley Photography

Transpac start from LA to Honolulu 

An even greater reverence was for the racing machines they sailed.  Whether a Snowbird with the Gold S, a Ten Meter, or Star racing in a Flight, the Beer Cans, Ensenada, or the Transpac, a boat usually got as much attention as the person at the helm. Always designated as females, masterfully designed boats lined our harbor like flowers on a lei. Sitting in front of gracious bayfront homes sleeping between regattas, the open ocean competitors looked like shaded serpents ready to attack. Cleaned and pampered daily and hidden beneath immaculately kept canvas, these ocean racers were incredibly mysterious due to the silent strength they represented. When fighting angry ocean swells and battering winds, the strength and power of these yachts was incalculable. 

Over the harbor’s history, there have been hundreds of such boats spread out from the west basin to the Peninsula Point. Their names burned into our memories like a Hank Aaron, Pancho Gonzales, or a Jerry West. Here are four such boats, honoring Newport Harbor’s great sailing history and adding grace, beauty and dominance to the city’s persona. Newport Harbor has overflowed with “gold-plated yachts” for well over a century.

A different kind Sea Drift

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Courtesy of Ayres Family Archives

“Sea Drift” below deck

For sheet luxury, Lyman H. Farwell’s 85-foot Sea Drift was a boat that commanded respect. It carried 60 feet on the waterline, a 20-foot beam and drafted 11 feet. The black-hulled, gaff-rigged club topsail schooner was designed by John Alden and built in Hull, England. Fully clothed, Sea Drift carried 11,301 square feet of sail. Built by a New York banker in 1924, nautical lore tells about the first owner outfitting it with enough illegal Scotch Whiskey, to pay for its construction. He sold it to a wealthy bachelor who lived aboard and circumnavigated the earth twice. Sea Drift was sold to Farwell in 1954 and became part of Newport’s All-Star lineup. Farwell raced and relaxed aboard this unique lady, even installing a Hammond electric organ in the main salon.

Under full sail, she delivered fabulous speeds, logging 10.5 knots for the 2,800 miles of the Honolulu race in 1955. In the same race in 1959, when the rest of the fleet was getting pounded by strong winds and heavy seas, Sea Drift’s crew was said to complain about “dominoes being knocked off the table.”

A 66-foot sloop, the Nam Sang was another hard-working beauty. Nam Sang, designed by Frank Paine was built in 1934 by James Graves of Marblehead, Massachusetts. She was originally design as a ketch.

Nam Sang’s owners were many, which typifies the old nautical adage: “The two happiest days of your life; is the day you purchase your boat and the day you sell your boat.” Nam Sang ended up in Newport Harbor with airline pilot Larry Holsinger and was also owned by actor Ray Milland and Paramount Pictures.  Milland sold it to Donald W. Spires and Spires to Louis Statham in 1955.

Converted to a sloop, Nam Sang got its chance to show off the true racing potential she possessed. Her name became known throughout the sailing circles; winning the Ensenada Race and placing well in several Honolulu races. New owner Louis Statham won Class A in the Honolulu race (third overall). In the 1961 Transpac, under owner A.B. Robbs, Nam Sang sported an additional 2,393-square-foot of sail which provided enough additional speed giving the smaller boat a moment of glory among a star-studded fleet. Nam Sang’s corrected time was the best.

A different kind Sirius ll

Courtesy of Ayres Family Archives

“Sirius ll” at Lido Shipyard

Sirius is known as the brightest star in the night sky. Appropriately, one of the shining stars of yacht racing were the Sirius and Sirius II racing yachts. The 82-ft. yacht Sirius II, previously known as Barlovento, Patalito and Simba, became one of the world’s sleekest and fastest single stick yachts in racing.  Sirius II was the first boat to finish the 1961 Honolulu Race; it too had many owners, as well as, names.

Designed by the firm of Burgess and Morgan Ltd., she was built for John Deere Wiman of Santa Barbara by the German shipyard Abeking and Rasmussen. Under the name Simba, Wiman campaigned actively on the West Coast. In 1947, she made her first appearance in the Honolulu Race under the name Patalito. He raced her in the Transpac three times. Frank Hooykaas of Los Angeles bought her and finished first in the 1957 Transpac. She was renamed Barlovento which translates as “big wind.” Her next owner, the E.R. Chilcott Family, replaced their beloved yacht Windward which went aground and was destroyed off the Mexican Coast in 1958 with Barlovento.

Savings and Loan magnet Howard Ahmanson, wanting to upgrade from his 10-meter Sirius, took advantage of Barlovento’s broken mast after slamming into a Los Angeles Harbor drawbridge. He bought it for one expressed purpose: “win the Honolulu Race.” After key alterations, Ahmanson renamed it Sirius II. She was 81 ft. 9 inches long, with a 14 ft 8-inch beam with 23 tons of lead ballast.  She was driven by 1,954 square feet of Dacron sails attached to a 98-foot mast.

For many years, the most impressive estate anywhere in the world was the Ahmanson Estate encompassing the entire west end of Harbor Island, with a stunning traditional home, massive grass yard and a lone dock housing the Sirius II. The property and boat faced directly west with brilliant sunsets showing the length of Newport’s north channel.

A different kind Kialoa ll

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Courtesy of Kilroy Family Archives

“Kialoa ll” below deck

Real estate developer John B. (Jim) Kilroy entered the racing scene with the same vengeance that he showed in the business world. He began winning local races including the 1962 Acapulco Race with Kialoa; meaning a long, light and swift canoe. In fact, Kialoa set a new converted time breaking the old record by five hours. As young bay sailors, we were told about the intensity of a crew run by Kilroy. As SoCal real estate rewarded Kilroy, his dogged personality fit well into the sport of ocean sailing. His next racing machine was the 73-foot Kialoa II designed by Sparkman and Stephens, which won the grueling Sydney-Hobart Race in 1971. And that sparked his continued determination. He would help birth the term “maxi-yachts” with Kialoa III, IV and V.

The Kilroy quotation, “Any crew member can disagree and take command as long as he pays the last three months maintenance costs – otherwise the skipper and other watch captain run the boat,” defines his dominant and extremely successful role on board his Kialoas.

Boats and skippers number in the millions and most are never known or quickly forgotten. However, if you have ever been aboard a speeding and bouncing “ragsailer” topping out in the open ocean, the experience is like the World Series, Super Bowl and Wimbledon all wrapped into one.

~~~~~~~~

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


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Voting for Measure B is underway, see who’s putting their money where their mouth is

TOM MARCHVoting is underway for the June Primary as mail ballots hit boxes last week. Of course, the biggest issue facing Newport Beach is Measure B. In essence, it will determine whether Newport Beach City Councilmembers will continue to select one of their own to serve as more of a ceremonial mayor each year, or, whether the selection, beginning in 2024, will be determined by a vote of the residents selecting an “official” mayor for a term of four years, with a second four-year term possible.

There are a number of pluses and minuses depending on which side of the issue you’re on. I encourage everyone to delve into the discussion and determine what the course of Newport Beach should be moving forward.

One old adage when it comes to politics is the saying, “follow the money.”

Obviously, Mayor Pro Tem Noah Blom has been one of the major voices for the Yes of B side and that is further proven with his $5,000 campaign donation that is listed on the Yes on B’s 497 Contribution Report

Several other local donors of note also on the list included Delta Ventures Dave Ellis, who has contributed $10,999; Fritz Duda, a real estate developer and owner of Via Lido Plaza who has given $5,000: another $5,000 from wealth adviser David Bahnsen and $1,500 from Marshall “Duffy” Duffield.

On the No on B contribution report are donations from former mayors Clarence Turner, $30,000 and Mike Henn for $4,000; city council candidate Tom Miller anteed up $25,000; Line in the Sand gave $15,000 and former Citizen of the Year Elizabeth Stahr contributed $6,000. Due to connection issues, the links to the donor contribution reports were not accessible at this time.

• • •

So, what’s it take to run a campaign for city council? Well, that depends on a number of things, but the high bar of contributions previously raised was back in 2014 when “Duffy” Duffield raised $217,431. 

That was the high number until this year. Just in from District One candidate Joe Stapleton, who announced contributions of $240,000 from nearly 500 donors, with still 5 1/2 months until go time.

“I want to make sure my message of keeping Newport, Newport is heard everywhere,” said Stapleton. “I am so grateful for each and every person who has supported my campaign to help me reach this milestone.”

Both the amount raised and the number of donors are obviously impressive. Stapleton is in a race with (Tom) Miller, who has not only raised his own money, but is also in a financial position where he can pretty much self-fund whatever is needed.

• • •

Saturday, the City hit a homerun with their Touch a Truck Day in the parking lot of the Balboa Pier. Parents, grandparents and all their little ones lined up at equipment everywhere to enjoy the day. Trust me, I know, I was there with my little grandsons.

Fair Game garbage truck with kid

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Photo by Papa

Grandson Curty, 3, finds his future dream job driving a garbage truck

Kudos to city employees for taking part and for a number of the city’s vendors, including CR&R, who brought a “trash” truck, that was an overwhelming favorite for all the kids.

Other big draws were tractors, backhoes, tree-cutting lift trucks, a forklift and so much more. Obviously, because it was on the warm side, the snow cone truck was also a must stop.

Fair Game kid at controls of backhoe

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Photo by Papa

Curty, again, here at the helm of a backhoe

• • •

What’s with the drought you ask? Are my lawns and gardens in trouble?

The Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce will hold their May Government Affairs Committee Meeting this Thursday, May 19 at 8 a.m. via Zoom. Grab yourself a glass a water and pull up a chair (feeble attempt at drought humor).

Anyway, Mark Vukojevic, the City’s Utilities Director will be the guest speaker and he’ll explain where we’re at and how local businesses and residents will potentially be affected.

Mark’s department is responsible for the maintenance and operation of the City’s water and wastewater systems, storm drain and tidal value system, oil and gas operations and streetlights.

He’s a guy that’s big on customer service, public outreach and being highly responsive to the community. If you haven’t met him, you’re in for a treat, he’s a great guy.

Even though it’s Zoom, reservations are required. Go here for more info and to reserve a spot.

• • •

This in from Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris’ office: “Do you know a woman in college deserving of a scholarship? The Women in California Leadership (WiCL) Foundation Minerva Scholarship program is now accepting online applications from eligible female students. 

The program was established to assist deserving female students by offering financial assistance to meet educational expenses. Up to 80 one-time $2,500 Minerva Scholarships and one $10,000 Golden Minerva Scholarship will be awarded this year.

Here are the requirements: full-time student in good standing at an accredited college or graduating this year from high school and already have proof of acceptance to an accredited college; must identify as female; and, a minimum GPA of 2.5.

If so, submit a completed online application with supporting documents. Find it all at http://wicl.us/scholarship-program. The deadline is May 31, 2022.

• • •

It’s time to get those running and walking shoes out for the Corona del Mar Scenic 5K coming up on Saturday, June 4. The CdM Chamber could use sponsors, volunteers and participants to make this another successful event.

Find out more at www.cdmchamber.com.

• • •

Supervisor Katrina Foley (2nd District) is running for the OC Supervisor 5th District open seat. I’ve said it before, somehow, she seems to be everywhere, and I’m not the only one.

Last week, on TV news reports of the Laguna Niguel fires, who’s in the background but none other than Katrina. And it’s not even her area.

Sunday afternoon, Katrina continued on, presenting the inaugural OC Live Concert Series through the County’s Arts-Related Grant Relief Program.

The multi-day, multi-venue event took place at both the Newport Dunes and Café Sevilla. It concluded Sunday with Flashback Heart Attack, DJ Teak Makai and the All-Star Trio performing.

Over the course of the series, Supervisor Foley presented checks to the 20+ acts performing, with each act in the concert lineup receiving a portion of the $160,000 grant curated for the series.

Fair Game group shot with 3 in red

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Courtesy of the Office of Supervisor Katrina Foley

(L-R) Flashback and the Heart Attack, Supervisor Katrina Foley, DJ Teak Makai and the All-Star Trio

• • •

A reminder, the Mayor’s Dinner, brought to the community by Speak Up Newport, takes place this Thursday night at the new VEA Newport Beach

This is usually one of those who’s who in Newport Beach events. Mayor Kevin Muldoon will be on hand to offer his State of the City, and just probably get a mention in there about his run against Foley for the 2nd District Supervisor seat.


Newport Beach – A Look Back

Photo series courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

Newport Beach A Look Back Thompson Family.png 5.17.2022

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The Thompson Family in front of their home, Aloha, in the 1920s

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..


Tickets on sale now for SL&G Newport Beach Garden Tour & Summer Garden Party

The 26th Annual Newport Beach Garden Tour, hosted by Sherman Library & Gardens’ Volunteer Association, is happening virtually again this year. Get ready to view some spectacular gardens that otherwise might not be part of a “traditional” Garden Tour.

Three Garden Tour videos will be released throughout the summer, beginning on Mother’s Day, leading up to the in-person Summer Garden Party on Saturday, Aug. 27 at Sherman Gardens.

Tickets on sale La Casa Pacifica

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Photos courtesy of Sherman Library & Gardens

The first Garden Tour video is of La Casa Pacifica, known as President Richard Nixon’s Western White House

The first Garden Tour video features La Casa Pacifica, a classic California beachfront mansion, also known as President Richard Nixon’s Western White House. Special access to this historical home was granted to Sherman Library & Gardens by the homeowners. The La Casa Pacifica video will make its debut on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 8.

Tickets on sale Balboa island

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The second Garden Tour features historic homes and gardens of Balboa Island

The next Garden Tour will feature historic homes and gardens of Balboa Island. It will be available for viewing beginning on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 19. 

Tickets on sale W. Parker Lyon House

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The W. Parker Lyon House in Pasadena was designed by master architect Thornton Ladd

The third and final Garden Tour is of the W. Parker Lyon House in Pasadena. The 1948 mid-century modern home was designed by master architect Thornton Ladd (1924-2010), who pioneered “Pasadena” or “USC style” Modernism. This video will be available for viewing beginning on Monday, Aug. 1. 

All three Garden Tour videos will be available to watch and re-watch at one’s leisure, from the comfort of your home. The Newport Beach Garden Tour grand finale is the in-person Summer Garden Party on Saturday, Aug. 27 taking place from 4-7 p.m. at Sherman Gardens.

Highlights of the Summer Garden Party include:

–Artists in the Garden painting and selling their art.

Inspired by Nature Summer Art Exhibit by mosaicist Irina Charny.

–Garden Party Hat Contest & Bouquet Bar.

–Delicious cuisine from Chef Jessica Roy at 608 Dahlia.

–Raffle & Silent Auction, Live Music and much more.

Tickets for the Virtual Garden Tour are $25 for Members and $35 for Non-Members. 

Tickets for the Virtual Garden Tour and Summer Garden Party are $60 for Members and $80 for Non-Members. Proceeds support Sherman Library & Gardens’ children’s education programs. 

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.thesherman.org, or call 949.673.2261.

Sherman Library & Gardens is located at 2647 E. Coast Highway Corona del Mar.


Packards International Membership Meet comes to the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach

The 59th Annual Packards International Membership Meet will take place on Saturday, May 14 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach. This free event that is open to the public will feature 30-40 Concours d’Elegance-quality automobiles ranging from the 1920s through the 1950s. 

Packards 1936 V 12 Convertible

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Photos courtesy of the Packards International Motor Car Club

1936 V-12 Packard Convertible 

The Packard was built by the Packard Motor Car Company in Detroit from 1899-1956. It was the leading American luxury automobile at the time, owned by presidents, kings, celebrities and titans of industry throughout the world. Known as the American Rolls Royce, their sales pitch was simple: “Ask the man who owns one.”

Packards 1940 Touring Sedan

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1940 Packard Touring Sedan

Packards continue to attract titans of industry as well as collectors and museums. Packards International Motor Car Club, headquartered in Santa Ana, is a nonprofit social club dedicated to the preservation, promotion and enjoyment of the Packard automobile. The club provides members the information and material they need to maintain their cars, and hosts events, tours and exhibitions to promote the enjoyment of their cars. Members receive the award-winning quarterly magazine, invitations to the annual Membership Meet and National Tour, access to projects and literature, and the ability to join one of their regional clubs. Regions host local events and tours where members can enjoy the camaraderie of fellow Packard enthusiasts.

Packards 1936 Gentleman's Tailback

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1936 Gentleman’s Tailback Packard Speedster

Hyatt Regency Newport Beach is located at 1107 Jamboree Road, Newport Beach.


Leadership Tomorrow Annual Guest Luncheon to be held May 19

Come learn more about the Leadership Tomorrow (LT) program by joining the Leadership Tomorrow Annual Guest Luncheon on Thursday, May 19 from 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m. at the Civic Center Community Room at Newport Beach City Hall.

Now is your opportunity to sit in on a portion of LT’s Local Government Workshop. Enjoy a delicious lunch and learn more about this dynamic community leadership program.

Leadership Tomorrow Muldoon

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Photos courtesy of NBCC

Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon

Featured luncheon speakers are Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon and Tustin Mayor Austin Lumbard.

Leadership Tomorrow Lumbard

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Tustin Mayor Austin Lumbard

If you know someone who would be a good fit for the LT program, please let them know about this annual Guest Luncheon. This is a great opportunity for them to learn more about LT and get a feel for the program by watching the mayors panel. If you are an LT alum, you are welcome to attend and mix with fellow graduates or the program. Guests and alumni are free to attend.

To make your reservations online, click here.

For more information, contact Jeff Parker at the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce at 949.729.4408, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Newport Beach City Hall is located at 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach.


Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents the 2022-2023 Broadway Series

In case you missed the big reveal, it’s official: The hottest musicals are coming straight from Broadway to Segerstrom Hall! Segerstrom Center for the Arts 2022/23 Broadway Series season is jam-packed with your favorite smash hits, and now is the time to subscribe to the nine-show Mega Broadway Package to make sure you don’t miss a single one.

Segerstrom Center Moulin Rouge

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Photo by Matthew Murphy

“Moulin Rouge! The Musical” takes the Segerstrom Hall stage on November 9-27

Beginning in September, the Broadway Series will include Center premieres of beloved shows and musicals including Moulin Rouge! The Musical (November 9-27); Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird (December 27-January 8, 2023); Disney’s Frozen (February 1-19, 2023); Hairspray (April 18-30, 2023); SIX The Musical (June 1-25, 2023) and Tina: The Tina Turner Musical (July 11-23, 2023). In addition, the return of classics featured in the Curtain Call series include Hamilton (September 23-October 16); Chicago (May 16-21, 2023) and The Book of Mormon (September 5-10, 2023). 

Experience the thrill of Broadway beginning this fall, with smaller season packages starting at $165.

To subscribe, go here.

Segerstrom Center Chicago

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Photo by Jeremy Daniel

“Chicago,” part of the Curtain Call Series, comes to Segerstrom Hall on May 16-21, 2023

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


Big trucks on display near Balboa Pier for public to explore

In celebration of National Public Works Week, the City of Newport Beach will host “Touch A Truck” in the Balboa Pier parking lot on Saturday, May 14 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

This is a hands-on event to explore heavy trucks and equipment, such as trash trucks, backhoes, loaders, street sweepers and more and to find out what they’re capable of doing.

There will also be an opportunity to meet the partners of the city’s Public Works & Utilities Department and to visit on-site learning booths.

A 9-10 a.m. “quiet hour” will begin the day with a no honking or lights period for those with sensitive ears and eyes.


Pacific Symphony’s 2022-23 Pops Season adds The Righteous Brothers 

Pacific Symphony just added a special Valentine’s Day show with blue-eyed soul pioneers, The Righteous Brothers (Feb. 10-11, 2023), to the 2022-23 Pops Season led by Principal Pops Conductor Laureate Richard Kaufman and underwritten by the Sharon and Tom Malloy Family. 

The Righteous Brothers enjoyed a string of Top 10 hits, including the most played song in radio history, “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’.” The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame duo of Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield, originally from Orange County, topped the charts for four decades. After Hatfield’s death in 2003, Medley continued to perform to sold-out crowds around the world, but fans and friends pleaded with him to keep The Righteous Brothers alive. Medley said, “No one could ever take Bobby’s place, but when I caught Bucky Heard’s show it all came together – I found the right guy to help me recreate the magic.” 

Pacific Symphony Heard and Medley

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Courtesy of Pacific Symphony

(L-R) Bucky Heard and Bill Medley will appear in The Righteous Brothers concert experience on February 10-11, 2023, as part of the upcoming Pops Season

The Righteous Brothers concert experience features their biggest hits –“Lovin’ Feelin’,” “Soul & Inspiration,” “Unchained Melody,” “Rock and Roll Heaven,” Medley’s Grammy-winning Dirty Dancing theme “The Time of My Life” and much more, all backed by the lush Hollywood sound of Pacific Symphony.

The Bill Medley/Bucky Heard pairing came as something of a happy accident. Medley said it just seemed right: “I’d been friends with Bucky for years, but when I caught his show he just killed me! The next day it hit me. That’s the guy, someone I could sing hard with, laugh hard with, love and respect – on and off stage. He fits The Righteous Brothers live performance show perfectly. And, we’ve even recorded some new material together.”

Pacific Symphony Gloria Gaynor

Courtesy of Pacific Symphony

Gloria Gaynor – The Queen of Disco takes the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall Stage on April 14-15, 2023, as part of the upcoming Pops Season 

The addition of The Righteous Brothers to Pacific Symphony’s Pops Season completes this series of seven singular sensations, which also present the Season Special Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone™ in Concert (October 28 at 8 p.m. and October 29 at 3 and 8 p.m.). The 2022-23 Pops Season officially begins November 4-5 with a tribute to legendary film composer Maestro John Williams in honor of his 90th birthday. Five other blockbuster shows in the Pops series include renowned artists across jazz, pop, disco, Broadway and rock: The Manhattan Transfer (December 16-17), Kristin Chenoweth (March 10-11, 2023), Gloria Gaynor – The Queen of Disco (April 14-15, 2023), The Music of The Rolling Stones (May 5-6, 2023) and Renée Elise Goldsberry (June 9-10, 2023). Goldsberry, a Hamilton: An American Musical alumna and Girls5eva star, closes the 2022-23 Pops Season.

Pacific Symphony Goldsberry

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Photo by Kathleen Sykes

Courtesy of Pacific Symphony

Renée Elise Goldsberry with a collection of showstoppers and Principal Pops Conductor Richard Kaufman close out the Pops Season on June 9-10, 2023

All concerts begin at 8 p.m. (unless noted) and take place at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Subscriptions for the seven-concert series are now available and start at $245. Single ticket sales begin in August and start at $35.

For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Patron Services at 714.755.5799, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., or visit www.PacificSymphony.org.

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


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.

The shelter would like to introduce everybody to 5-month-old Merlin. He’s all puppy and he loves following you everywhere you go. As a possible chihuahua mix, he prefers the company of others and he’ll find you no matter where you go. He is a totally sweet little boy who will do best going on adventures with his humans, playing with another fun dog in the home, and/or getting some play dates at a caring and well-kept doggy day care. Merlin is a fantastic puppy. He frolics with innocence and, if all goes well, his entire life will be filled with true goodness. 

Pet of the Week Meet Merlin

Courtesy of Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Merlin

If you’ve been waiting for a sweet puppy, please feel free to contact the Newport Beach Animal Shelter at 949.718.3454, or through email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out more about Spring.

A reminder about puppies – they need to learn everything – so time, patience and love are key to growing any puppy into a magnificent adult. If you have the time and pride yourself in being devoted to your furry family members, the shelter staff looks forward to hearing from you and will share all they know about Merlin.

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.


Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents the 2022-2023 Jazz Series

Bringing a wide array of musical talents, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts Jazz Series returns with Samara Joy and Veronica Swift, two of the top young jazz singers in the country.

Other jazz artists include Vijay Iyer Trio, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Mavis Staples with Kandace Springs as well as Jazz at Lincoln Center Presents Songs We Love, George Benson, Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour and The Cookers series debut.

Segerstrom Center Samara Joy 5.10

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Photos courtesy of scfta.org

Samara Joy takes the Samueli Theater stage on October 1

2022-2023 Jazz Line-up:

Samara Joy, Saturday, Oct. 1: With a voice as smooth as velvet, Samara Joy seems to rise with each performance. At only 21 years old, she has already performed in many of the great jazz venues in NYC, including Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, The Blue Note and Mezzrow, in addition to working with jazz greats such as Christian McBride, Pasquale Grasso, Jon Faddis, Kirk Lightsey, Cyrus Chestnut and NEA Jazz Master Dr. Barry Harris. Joy makes her debut at the Center and looks forward to sharing her passionate love for jazz as a uniting force and as a catalyst for change in the years to come.

Vijay Iyer Trio, Saturday, Nov. 5: By overwhelming consensus, the Vijay Iyer Trio has become one of the pivotal jazz forces of the 21st century. Described as “the best piano trio in jazz today” (Der Spiegel), “the great new jazz piano trio” (The New York Times), “truly astonishing” (NPR) and “the best band in jazz” (Pop Matters), the trio makes “cutting-edge music, but always accessible” (The Guardian) – emotionally resonant and deeply interactive, radiating groove and brimming with polyrhythmic detail, rooted in tradition yet truly innovative in style and form.

Mavis Staples with Kandace Springs, Friday, Dec. 9: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Mavis Staples, returns to Orange County with her incomparable singing and an array of her most reputable songs spanning from the Civil Rights era to some present-day classics. Kandace Springs, an artist Prince describes as “a voice that could melt snow” will open for Staples.

Segerstrom Center Monterey Jazz Penn

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Clarence Penn is among the many artists performing at the Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour coming to the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall on January 25, 2023

Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour, January 25, 2023: Starring vocalists Dee Dee Bridgewater and Kurt Elling, saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin, pianist Christian Sands, bassist Yasushi Nakamura and drummer Clarence Penn, come together to perform music, both historic and new, that will surely delight audiences far and wide. The folks at the Monterey Jazz Festival, who began mixing high-performance headliners in 1966 will return to Segerstrom Center. The world’s longest running jazz festival will bring today’s most remarkable jazz talents to Orange County.

Jazz at Lincoln Center Presents Songs We Love, February 4, 2023:

Songs We Love is a journey through the first 40 years of jazz song. Under the musical direction of Riley Mulherkar, three guest vocalists will join an all-star band made up of New York’s rising stars. Combining their distinct talents, the group will sing their way through four decades of music, beginning with the early blues and jazz of the 1920s and ending in the early 1950s. Iconic singers to be explored include Ma Rainey, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra and Judy Garland.

The Cookers, March 25, 2023: This exciting all-star group summons up an aggressive mid ‘60s spirit with a potent collection of expansive post-bop originals marked by all the requisite killer instincts and pyrotechnic playing expected of some of the heaviest hitters on the scene today.

Segerstrom Center George Benson 5.10

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George Benson comes to Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall on April 7, 2023

George Benson, April 7, 2023: Ten-time Grammy Award winner, American jazz legend and international star, iconic George Benson is getting back on the road. The 78-year-old pioneering jazz-soul guitarist and singer has scored Number One hits played with musical greats such as Miles Davis, Minnie Riperton and Stevie Wonder, and has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Veronica Swift, June 24, 2023: One of today’s brightest young jazz stars, vocalist Veronica Swift recorded her first album at the age of 9, after which she started touring professionally with her parents, jazz pianist Hod O’Brien and vocalist Stephanie Nakasian. By 19, she placed second at the Thelonius Monk Vocal Competition, launching an adult career that has seen her collaborate with such musical greats as Michael Feinstein, Chris Botti, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. Having performed at jazz clubs and festivals around the world, the 27-year-old vocal phenom returns to the Center.

For tickets, subscription renewals and new subscriptions, visit the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, or go online to www.scfta.org.

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


Capturing iconic Newport Beach and beyond: Sheep Landscape

Capturing iconic Sheep Landscape

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Artwork by Don Krotee

This transparent watercolor is an imagined landscape by the artist. The foreground pathway traditionally, in many classic landscapes, shows “a way into the painting.” Older remnants of fence posts, line part of the path.  This leads to the middle ground where dark shapes suggest several sheep being herded by a shepherd. Toward the background is an old barn from North Carolina that the artist used as reference. The media is Arches watercolor paper 300# paper.

~~~~~~~~

Don Krotee is a 35-year resident of Newport Beach, a 2000 GPAC member, a Corona del Mar Residents Association member, the founder of the Newport Heights Improvement Association, a board member of SPON and lives in Corona del Mar. He is an architect, sailor and fine artist who has been drawing and painting from an early age. He provides Stu News drawings and paintings from iconic Newport Beach, California and the world. Follow @donkrotee.art for more art by artist Don Krotee.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Newport Beach Fire Department on the front lines in Laguna Niguel…one crew member injured

TOM MARCHWednesday started like most days have recently here at Stu News. Letters filling our mailbox were discussing the pluses and minuses of Measure B. And, most everything in town was centered around the issue, with public forums at City Hall and another one planned by the Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce.

The day took a sudden turn, however, in the middle of Wednesday afternoon. Smoke began billowing into the sky south of Newport Beach as reports of a fire were reported in the canyon behind The Ranch in Laguna Beach.

On shore winds would save Laguna Beach as the flames began moving east and swept rapidly toward Laguna Niguel. In a matter of hours, some 20 or so multi-million-dollar homes would be destroyed and lives there changed forever.

And, just because the fire was 14 miles or so south of us, doesn’t mean Newport Beach Fire sat on the sidelines…quite the opposite. 

And, as it developed, I found that gameplan to step into action quite fascinating.

According to NBFD Chief Jeff Boyles, “Several off-duty firefighters saw the local smoke and drove to our headquarters station in Fashion Island knowing they would be put to work. We then put a mass text out asking for others to come in.

“When fires are local, we initially keep sending the closest resources and the dispatch computer system adjusts and fills (in) behind them. In short: Laguna Beach, Newport Beach and Costa Mesa sent the majority of their units to the fire. Our dispatch immediately (requested) fire engines from Huntington Beach, Fullerton and Anaheim to cover the stations in Newport Beach until we could re-staff with off duty personnel.”

In short, NBFD sent five of their eight fire engines to “assist with the growing wildland fire and to protect structures” in Laguna Niguel. Four of the five engines worked all night and, according to Chief Boyles, were still at it through yesterday’s morning hours.

In a bad news, good news scenario, according to the Chief, “One NBFD engine crew was removed from the incident with a firefighter injury. The firefighter was treated at Hoag and released (yesterday) morning and is in good spirits.”

According to the Chief, “It’s important to note that we are not experiencing typical Red Flag Santa Ana wind conditions which bring low humidity and high heat and blow from a different direction. With that said, OCFA crews expect to get the actual fire contained before this weekend’s pending heat wave.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

And if all that wasn’t enough for a day’s work, last night, just after midnight, a vehicle traveling southbound on Coast Highway apparently hit a curb and then crashed into construction vehicles working in the area. 

Three people were found deceased inside the vehicle and three construction workers were injured and taken to local hospitals, where they were treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Firefighters, again, had to assist with a resulting vehicle fire and with health care assistance.

As you might imagine, it was a difficult day.

I recently reported that new fire engines were being delivered to a couple of our City fire stations…it’s days and weeks like this that should give us all comfort that our city leaders understand the investment into the latest state-of-the-art equipment to protect and assist our community.

Three days after delivery, new Engine 63 was on location in Laguna Niguel. It can be seen here with its new remote control deck gun allowing it to be deployed faster, and also lets the engineer control it remotely from the ground. 

Fair Game Fire Engine 5.13

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Courtesy of NBFD

Remote control deck gun could be game changer

The older engines required a firefighter to manually adjust it from the roof and was slower to deploy.

• • •

On tap this weekend is the Touch a Truck event Saturday morning in the Balboa Pier parking lot.

Then on Sunday, May 15 is Public Safety Day in the parking lot in front of Newport Beach Police headquarters at Jamboree and Santa Barbara. Fire will also be on hand. It might be a good day to remind our public safety personnel how thankful we are as a community for what they do.

• • •

And, if that’s not enough, Sunday is also the 27th Annual Mary Hardesty Realty Balboa Island Artwalk from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 

I’m told 90 artists, a bunch of musicians and lots of other activities will be on the South Bayfront Promenade.

It’s free.

• • •

Worth noting, the Exchange Club of Newport Harbor will once again stage their Field of Honor, this year their 13th annual, in Castaways Park, running from Armed Forces Day (May 20) through Memorial Day (May 31). 

This is when the Club places 1776 American flags in the park, many of them with individual recognition honoring men and women who have served our country.

If you or someone you know would like to recognize someone, it’s easy to do, with all proceeds donated to families of our servicemen and women, other Americanism projects and youth charities in the community.

• • •

I recently wrote about the 40th Annual Gentlemen’s Haberdashery fundraiser that took place at the Balboa Bay Resort. Local resident Tony Moiso is Honorary Co-Chair of the event and Chairman & CEO of Rancho Mission Viejo.

The goal was to raise money for The Heart of Jesus Retreat Center, which is operated by the Sisters of the Society Devoted to the Sacred Heart. They “provide religious and integrity formation and avenues of faith development for children, youth, adults and families, all within the confines of a safe, secure and caring Center situated in the heart of Santa Ana.”

Well, this just in. This year’s event raised, are you ready, a record-breaking amount of more than $500,000.

“It was inspiring to see such a generous and philanthropic group of leaders and members of our community come together with a common goal to give thousands of children in Orange County and Southern California the gift of laughter, prayer and learning at the Heart of Jesus Retreat Center,” said Moiso.

The Gentlemen’s Haberdashery is a fun event where some of Orange County’s most prominent male executives and community leaders model a full range of menswear.

It returns to the Balboa Bay Resort on April 27, 2023. Mark it down!

• • •

Granted, it wasn’t the Big Game between USC and UCLA, but I recently came across a competition between students from the George L. Argyros School of Business & Economics at Chapman University and a team from the University of California, Irvine. The goal of the competition was to develop a winning land use proposal for a site in Anaheim.

The competition was brought to my attention because one of the students on the Chapman team was Newport Beach resident Isabella Zelinger.

The head-to-head real estate competition, conducted by NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, gave the students four weeks to prepare proposals determining the highest and best use of multiple parcels totaling a 6.9-acre site in North Downtown Anaheim

The proposals were then presented to property owner Bill Taormina, a panel of commercial real estate industry and public sector judges and an audience of industry guests at Chapman University. 

Chapman won the big game by introducing Pearson Village, which honored the history of the site and embraced the heritage and local businesses in the area.

In recognition of the new rivalry, Chapman and UCI competed for the Orange Cup rather than the USC/UCLA Silver Shovel.

Winner Zelinger said the Chapman team was thrilled about their victory and proud that they could bring home the Orange Cup for their school. 

“This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and we are so excited to have had the experience and mentorship that this competition afforded,” Zelinger said. “Of course, winning felt pretty good, too!”

• • •

My friend and fellow Stu News columnist Len Bose is a sailor. He’s pretty good at it.

Recently, Len told me he was branching out, including doing a harbor update on Poorman’s Morning Rush on local radio station KOCI. He’s trying to get the word out. Listen in, you can catch him at www.kociradio.com.


Sand and sea

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Photo by Stacia Stabler

Beauty as far as the eye can see at Crystal Cove


Explore Upper Newport Bay

OC Parks manages nearly 60,000 acres of parks, historical and coastal facilities and open space for the County of Orange as part of OC Community Resources. For more information, visit www.ocparks.com.

Here in your own backyard, check out these events at Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve to get you exploring the outdoors.

Explore Upper Newport Bay kayaking

Courtesy of Newport Bay Conservancy

Kayaking Upper Newport Bay

Wild Tales: Fridays, May 13, 20, 27. Wild Tales will be offered every Friday from 10-10:45 a.m. and includes a different outdoor story time in their newly renovated amphitheater, an age-appropriate hike and a craft project in their classroom. Activities are designed for ages 2-4, but all are welcome. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Global Big Day at the Bay: Saturday, May 14. The Global Big Day is an international bird-watching event sponsored by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This year, come participate at Upper Newport Bay from 8-10 a.m. Last year, more than 51,000 people from 192 countries participated and they are hoping to break that record this year. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Snakes at the Bay: Sunday, May 15. Learn about the slithery, not slimy snakes who live at Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and are a very beneficial part of the ecosystem. The program takes place from 1-3 p.m. and begins at the newly renovated Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center amphitheater where you will meet live, non-venomous native snakes up close and in person. After learning from their animal ambassadors, you will head out on the trails and see if you can find any wild snakes around the Bay. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Full Moon Hike – Total Lunar Eclipse Edition: Sunday, May 15. Meet at the Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center for a walk around the Bay from 7:30-10 p.m. You will see and hear nocturnal animals as the “night shift” clocks in for duty. As you walk, you will count down until moon rise and be greeted with a total lunar eclipse in progress when it does. If conditions are favorable, you will also examine the moon through their telescope after the hike. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Backyard Bugs: Saturday, May 21. Insects are the most diverse group of animals on planet Earth and make up 80% of all known species. There are more different kinds of bugs than all the other types of animals combined. Join a family friendly trek around Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve from 1-3 p.m. to learn all about these amazing animals who have perfected the art of ecological specialization. Insects may have a reputation for being icky, but in fact, they are essential pollinators who are needed to sustain life on our planet. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Family Walk at the Bay: Sunday, May 22. Join an easy, stroller-friendly walk along Upper Newport Bay from 10-11:30 a.m. to enjoy all the sights, sounds and smells of spring. You will stay on the paved Bayview Trail and pause frequently to observe birds, bugs, wildflowers, and any other wildlife that happens to be present. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Junior Ranger Day at the Bay: Sunday, May 22. Come earn your Junior Ranger Badge and Certificate at Upper Newport Bay from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Participants will go on a guided hike, complete the junior ranger activity book and take the junior ranger oath. Activities will be designed for learners in the 9-12 age range, but everyone is welcome. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Crafty Kids Sunday: Sunday, May 29. Come join a fun, themed craft project anytime between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Crafty Kids Sunday features free craft activities in the Muth Interpretive Center’s Discovery Classroom. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.


Not a car in sight

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

Beautiful Bay Island, the only island in Newport Beach where no cars are allowed


Pacific Life Foundation honored by American Red Cross

The American Red Cross of Orange County is honoring 10 local heroes for their outstanding acts of heroism and humanitarian service. These heroes will be celebrated at the 2022 Orange County Heroes Awards, held on Friday, May 20 at the City National Grove of Anaheim. 

Among them is the Pacific Life Foundation of Newport Beach, that is being recognized with the Corporate Hero Award.

Pacific Life check

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Photos courtesy of Pacific Life 

 Pacific Life Foundation presents a $250,000 check to the American Red Cross of Orange County, becoming an official member of the American Red Cross Disaster Responder Program

Pacific Life has been a generous partner of the American Red Cross, providing mission support through financial grants, employee giving campaigns, blood drives and volunteerism. In January 2022, the Pacific Life Foundation became an official member of the American Red Cross Disaster Responder Program by giving a gift of $250,000.

Pacific Life van

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American Red Cross Disaster Relief van at Pacific Life, Newport Beach

“We’re thrilled to recognize true heroes who are serving our communities every day,” said Becky Firey, executive director of the American Red Cross of Orange County. “It’s an honor to share their inspiring stories with the public and highlight the impact of local, everyday heroes across our region.”

Individual event tickets and sponsorships are available now. This year’s event will raise funds for Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces (SAF), which proudly serves military members, veterans and their families. A Little Help Foundation will match all event donations up to $25,000.

For more information about the Orange County Heroes Awards, or to make a donation, visit www.redcross.org/ocheroes.


Planning Commission approves Ritz-Carlton Residences to adjoin VEA Newport Beach

By GARY SHERWIN

The Newport Beach Planning Commission made some landmark tourism history last night and this is truly a huge deal even if you aren’t in the local hospitality industry.

Here’s why: The commission signed off on the Ritz-Carlton Residences which will be built next to the soon to be completed VEA Newport Beach, formerly called the Marriott (which technically it still is).

What’s interesting is that the 22-story Ritz will be residential only, meaning it won’t be used for visitor stays. But that point doesn’t negate the importance of the development, which is incredibly significant.

First is the fact that the posh Ritz-Carlton brand will have a presence in our community. Just seeing that famous logo on a sign as you drive by adds to the upscale nature of Newport Beach. But perhaps even more importantly, this project is connected to VEA with a vision to become one integrated luxury campus. That means that the Ritz will drive business to VEA as residents dine, drink and use the hotel facilities. Maybe they will also bring a meeting here.

Gary Sherwin

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Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

VEA was built with the expectation that the Ritz would be built at some point, so the hotel’s design, amenities and service standards will be fully complementary to the Ritz. Instead of just getting a refreshed hotel, Newport Beach-based Eagle Four and Lyon Living, the property’s owners, went the extra mile to create a much better experience than what would have been created without the Ritz.

VEA will now have approximately 132 rooms less than the former Marriott, “rightsizing it,” as the owners call it, given the available meeting room space. A three-story tower on the property near self-parking will be demolished and serve as the Ritz’s new location.

Prior to Eagle Four and Lyon Living buying the property in 2020, HOST, the Marriott’s prior owner, planned a $30 million renovation. It would have been a nice, somewhat conventional, updating of the property. But when it was sold, the new owners didn’t feel it was enough and invested more than twice that sum to literally reinvent it.

It’s also important to note that although Marriott’s name is not quite as prominent as it was before on VEA, the entire property will still be managed by the company since it is one campus. VEA was deliberately designed to give it a somewhat independent resort feel, but it is a Marriott through and through. Now the world’s largest hotel company, Marriott owns the Ritz-Carlton brand and is very protective of its brand assets. 

The company has had a strong influence on the VEA’s and the Ritz hotel-branded residential design and operation and perhaps most significantly, the entire campus will be overseen by Debbie Snavely, the longtime general manager and former Newport Beach Citizen of the Year. Debbie and her husband Ned, now retired, are longtime Marriott associates and literally bleed the brand.

VEA’s unofficial coming out party will be the Mayor’s Dinner next Thursday night when the city’s most influential citizens will come together to hear Kevin Muldoon give his State of the City address. Kevin will have a chance to talk about the city’s financial success during the pandemic and what better way than to give the speech in a place that would have never been built had the pandemic not happened.

As the story goes, Eagle Four partners Kevin Martin and Todd Pickup were on the front nine of the Newport Beach Country Club one day in mid 2020 and looked up and imagined owning the hotel. An unsolicited offer was made, accepted and a new vision was developed that went far beyond what HOST had planned. That’s the value of local ownership.

So, the local tourism industry wins big time by having a better-quality hotel product with VEA and the Ritz-Carlton will bring the halo of a world-class luxury brand to the city.

That’s pretty cool stuff. But what is particularly noteworthy about this project is that its impact goes beyond just tourism. This is a big deal for every resident in the city.

As covered by Tom Johnson last week, the Ritz project has been blessed by SPON (Still Protecting Our Newport) which given the scope of a project like this might be surprising. That is until you know that it includes the creation of a private, non-profit housing fund. Ask almost anyone at City Hall, and you’ll hear that perhaps the city’s biggest current challenge is to fulfill the new state mandated dwelling units for affordable housing.

Much of the talk locally has been to chop up residential lots to accommodate them or build another 11,000 to 25,000 new homes to pay for the affordable units. The great news is that the creation of this private non-profit housing trust fund will allow the city to focus on affordable housing only, and not building so many new units so we could meet the mandated 4,845-unit number. 

This amazingly creative approach will not only bring quality residential and enhanced hotel product to the city, but also help solve a huge issue that has perplexed city leaders for a couple of years now. 

Congratulations to the leaders of SPON, Jean Watt, Charles Klobe and Nancy Scarbrough for their open mindedness and working with Eagle Four’s Kory Kramer and Lyon Living’s Peter Zak to create a true win-win. Councilwoman Joy Brenner also played a big role too.

Literally everyone in the city benefits in this deal, even if you never go near the Ritz when it is completed sometime in 2025. 

And maybe the best thing of all is that this deal gives you hope that even in this polarized era, good things can still get done.

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


Project Hope Alliance holds 8th Annual Bottomless Hope event

Project Hope Alliance (PHA) held its 8th Annual Bottomless Hope gala, after a two-year hiatus, on April 24 hosting more than 180 guests as they enjoyed one-of-a-kind food and drink stations for brunch. This year’s event raised more than $280,000 to help fund PHA end the cycle of youth homelessness.

Due to events like this, which was held at the Grand Gimeno in Orange, PHA has been able to triple the number of kids served, including those in the Newport-Mesa Unified School District. PHA has achieved a high school graduation rate more than 20% above the national average and PHA’s work contributes $75,000 in savings to the community per high school graduate per year.

Project Hope Boulton

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Courtesy of Project Hope Alliance 

(L-R) Newport Harbor High School Principal Sean Boulton, CEO of Project Alliance Jennifer Friend and Huntington Beach High School Principal Dr. Danny Morris at the gala

Noteworthy, in November 2021, PHA received $1.4 million to expand into NMUSD and hire case managers. Jennifer Friend, CEO of Project Alliance, who personally experienced youth homelessness while living within the NMUSD, shared a success story of PHA working with a Newport Harbor High School senior who plans to attend college and major in art in the fall. Struggling during her sophomore year, PHA worked closely with her helping to recover her grades and by junior year, she was passing all her classes. Now she is realizing her dream to pursue a career in art.

For more than 30 years, Project Hope Alliance (PHA) has been working to end the cycle of homelessness, one child at a time. To find out more, visit www.projecthopealliance.org.


Regattas and Races…

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

BYC 

2022 Twilight Series - May

May 11

ILCA Fleet (2 races)

1 Siena Nichols, BYC, Total 3

2 Jeff Linden, BYC, Total 4

3 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 5

Nevin Elliot, BYC/NHYC, Total 18

Lido 14 A Fleet (2 races)

1 Papadopoulos/Ogier, WSA, Total 2

2 Dan Long, BYC, Total 4

3 McRae/Gorski, ABYC, Total 8

Lido 14 B Fleet (2 races)

1 Long/Swan, BYC, Total 3

2 Lange/Mulcaire, ALYC, Total 3

BCYC 

2022 Taco Tuesdays

May 10

PHRF – A Class (5.1 Miles)

1 Legacy, Bruce Cooper, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 0:49:32, Corrected Time 0:41:27

2 Amante, Richley Family

   Elapsed Time 0:47:12, Corrected Time 0:42:47

3 Destroyer, Jim Bailey Family, NHYC

   Elapsed Time 0:48:30, Corrected Time 0:43:44

4 Taurus, Russell Grant, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 0:46:01, Corrected Time 0:44:29

5 Le Refuge, Mark Jensen, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 1:07:41, Corrected Time 1:00:07

PHRF – B Class (4.4 Miles)

1 Rhythm, Roger Gooding, SBYRC

   Elapsed Time 0:53:07, Corrected Time 0:44:50

2 Buena Vista, Berkeley Greene, ALYC

   Elapsed Time 0:58:42, Corrected Time 0:48:00

3 Shadow, Steve Fink, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 1:02:46, Corrected Time 0:53:36

4 Lickity Split, Andrew Whittingham, WSAOC

   Elapsed Time 1:04:44, Corrected Time 0:55:03

PHRF – C Class (4.2 Miles)

1 Ventus, Team BCYC, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 0:48:50, Corrected Time 0:34:16

2 Horsefeathers, John Fuller, NHYC

   Elapsed Time 0:47:48, Corrected Time 0:35:58

3 Celia, Jim O’Connor, ALYC

   Elapsed Time 0:54:58, Corrected Time 0:39:47

4 Halcyon 3, Bob Kafka, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 0:58:52, Corrected Time 0:43:28

5 Mystery, Dene Stratton, BCYC

   Elapsed Time 1:03:16, Corrected Time 0:45:12

Harbor 20 A (2 races)

1 Shana’s Secret, Thompson/Conzelman, BCYC, Total 2

2 Summer Dream, Cheadle/Schupak, BYC, Total 4

3 Jubilee, Yates/Kincaid, NHYC, Total 6

4 Only Child, L. Bose/J. Bose, BCYC, Total 6

Harbor 20 B (2 races)

1 Scott Barnes, Scott Barnes, ALYC, Total 3

2 Whatever, Hurliman/Fischbacher, SBYC, Total 3

3 Mili’apa, Watanabe/Sutherland, UCISA, Total 6

4 Spirit, D. Haynes/P. Haynes, BCYC, Total 6 

Harbor 20 C (2 races)

1 Shazam, Alfano/Shinrock, ALYC, Total 2

2 Dragon Lady, Sangster/Kimball, LIYC, Total 4 

3 Rascal II, Mary Bacon, BCYC, Total 4 

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..


Take Five: Meet Liddy Paulsen, president of the Newport Beach Sister City Association

By AMY SENK

Earlier this year, I was reading a City Manager update about recent Public Works improvements at the Sister City Garden in a corner of Irvine Terrace Park, where sculptures and benches reside to commemorate the friendship between the Newport Balboa Rotary Club and the Rotary Club of Okazaki South in Japan. The “Sister City” was formalized in November 1984 through the Newport Beach Sister Cities Association (NBSCA), and according to the report, the garden includes a stone temple, three dedicated benches, a statue, a stone lantern and six memorial Japanese Black Pines dedicated to the city and its citizens. I stopped by to check it out, and then I reached out to Liddy Paulsen, president of the Newport Beach Sister City Association, to find learn more.

Take Five Meet Liddy Paulsen

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Photos by Amy Senk

Liddy Paulsen

Q: You are the president of the NBSCA. Can you tell me more about the organization’s history?

A: Dwight D. Eisenhower felt we should have people-to-people diplomacy, which is how Sister Cities International, which began in 1956. In Newport Beach, two gentlemen, Sam Tate and Wendell Fish, went to the City of Newport Beach and said they were interested in getting involved in a Sister City program with Okazaki, Japan, and the city agreed. We’re the group that runs the Sister City organization for the city, under their policies. Later, we also became a Sister City to Antibes, France and Ensenada, Mexico.

Q: What is your role with the organization?

A: I’m the president. We have a board of directors that meets once a month at OASIS. Our goal is to work with youths between the cities. We work on the student exchanges. We have three vice presidents, one for each Sister City, and we have a secretary and treasurer. We are a 501(c) organization. We plan fundraisers, although lately we’ve been pretty quiet because of COVID. Connie Skibba, who is vice president, did go over to CdM and Newport Harbor high schools to talk to them about student exchanges. We have exchanges with eighth grade students at CdM Middle School and at Ensign. And for France, we have 10th graders who travel to France. We usually have eight to 10 students, and then over in France or in Okazaki, they would choose eight to 10 students. Our students travel there during spring break, in Okazaki, and stay in the home of a family, go to school and participate in all the family activities. One year, my husband, Scott, and I were chaperones. It was great. We had a lot of fun. We stayed at a teacher’s home, and they wined and dined us while we were over there. The kids went to school with the students and stayed in their homes. And then that same student in October comes to Newport Beach and lives with our student who lived with them. We also take the students on outings when they come to visit. The visiting students are presented at a City Council meeting and present something to the council. They are also honored at one of the meetings in Japan. 

Take Five stone lantern

The garden, tucked into a corner of Irvine Terrace Park, features a statue and benches along with this stone lantern presented to the city in June 1989, celebrating the 15th anniversary of Rotary Club of Okazaki’s charter

Q: I saw a City Manager’s update that mentioned the Sister City Garden in Irvine Terrace Park. Can you tell me more about the history of that garden?

A: This was not the first garden. One of the gardens we had was in front of the old City Hall, with roses given to the City by Antibes. When that City Hall closed down, the roses were going to be taken out. I went over and looked at them, and they looked terrible, so I went to Sherman Gardens and asked, “How do you take care of roses? What do you do?” It ended up that we were able to save some of the roses, and they are now at a private home. Irvine Terrace Park’s garden began because Wendell Fish lived there. They donated pine trees and things like that, and it was a perfect place to put them, in the park near Wendell Fish. I think Wendell was involved in having it there, and then they also put the statue and \ benches in so people could sit and look out. It’s a beautiful view, sitting on that bench, looking out at the bay. We also have two statues and the Bamboo (Courtyard) garden at the library. And the Japanese Sister City participants paid to have those statues and things all shipped over and planted.

Q: What gifts have we given to the other countries?

A: This is our concern. Not very much, and this is what we’re focusing on now because we have the 40th anniversary coming up with Okazaki. We need to go to the city and say, “We need a substantial gift to send to Okazaki.” One year, when they came over here, our mayor gave them a gold pen. And at the same time, they donated this big marble statue that was worth thousands of dollars. It doesn’t need to be like that, but I think our officials aren’t as aware of how important these relationships are and what they do for us.

Q: Why are Sister City relationships important?

A: It makes our kids more aware of other cultures. It’s a more intimate appreciation of other cultures when you live it for a while and know someone who lives there and it’s a contact. A lot of friendships have spread from that, from the visits here, or their visits to their Sister City buddies over in the foreign country. It’s like Eisenhower wanted it to be. It’s a face-to-face, people-to-people experience – learning how you live in your country and what you’re like and being appreciated and then vice-versa. Building better understandings. We believe in the program and think it does a lot of good. 

Editor’s Note: For more information about the Newport Beach Sister Cities Association and student exchange program, visit www.nbsca.org/okazakistudentexchage.html.

~~~~~~~~

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


You Must Remember This: CdM aka Red Hill

By NANCY GARDNER

In the early days of our city, CdM voters were entirely ignored when it came to city politics. Why was that? At that point, CdM wasn’t part of the city, CdM residents didn’t vote in city elections, and as my father put it, “in politics, if you can’t vote, you don’t exist.” Politics 101.

This all changed in 1923 when CdM was annexed. Suddenly – and I’m sure they were very happy to know this – CdM residents actually existed. This coincided with the takeover of city politics by the Balboa sector, led by Lloyd Claire who was pretty much the boss of the city. As is the case with any successful political boss, Claire led a very well-organized machine and part of that was a very well-organized get-out-the-vote routine. At election time every single voter was contacted at least once by a city hall advocate and not by a flyer or a robocall. This was a personal contact, something possible when we were a small town. As the election neared, Claire would get his minions together and go over the voter rolls. As he read each name, there would be a nod and the assurance that the person was voting for the administration. Newport, Balboa, Balboa Island, Lido Isle, Newport Heights – as they went through the districts there was the same chorus: That person will be voting for the administration – until they got to CdM.

You’d think that as the new kids on the block, the CdM folks would want to fit in. This wasn’t the case. The administration’s man in CdM was Johnny Siegel, the assistant city engineer. As Claire called out the CdM names, there was no longer the confident assurance of each vote. Instead, time after time Siegel would shake his head in embarrassment and say he didn’t know how that person would vote. No one could question his loyalty to the effort, so there was only one logical conclusion to this lack of avowed support for the administration. CdM was full of subversives. As a result, CdM came to be known as Red Hill.

I doubt you could find an actual Communist in CdM, but there must have been something in the air or water that differentiated CdM from the rest of the city. Not only did they not march in lockstep with everyone else during the Lloyd Claire reign, it was CdM people at the forefront of the effort to overthrow Claire.  People like Braden Finch, Clyan Hall, Jay Stoddard, Andy Smith, Hanz Lorenz, O.Z. Robertson and Les Steffensen – they were leaders in creating the city charter and shepherding the city through the transition.

Today, CdM is no longer called Red Hill or viewed with any more approval or dislike than any other part of the city. Most of us will never get a personal visit about our vote, but we will be inundated by flyers and robocalls and social media postings, all of which might have made Johnny Siegel’s life a little easier, at least when it came to getting out the vote. That’s just a small part of his role in the city’s history, however. Siegel oversaw the construction of the CdM footbridge which was completed in 1928. More than that, he was instrumental in getting it approved in the first place.

You Must Remember Goldenrod Footbridge

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Photo by Amy Senk

Goldenrod Footbridge

In 1926, Coast Highway through CdM was completed, making CdM much more accessible. There were great hopes that this would boost land sales, increase visits and that sort of thing, but not much of this happened for a simple reason. What is now Bayside Drive was then Pacific Gulch which was just what the name suggests – a weed-choked gully. If you wanted to get to the beach, you had to go well out of your way from the inland side of Pacific Gulch to the sea side, or scramble through the dense, prickly undergrowth of the gully. History tells us that after much thought and discussion, the city decided that if they wanted to improve property values, boost tourism and the like, a bridge should be built across Pacific Gulch, connecting both sides of town. That is what the histories say.

According to my father, the real reason the bridge was built was because Siegel’s mother lived on the ocean side of Pacific Gulch, and she was tired of the inconvenience and travail associated with grocery shopping and whatever. She kept bugging her son to build a bridge, he kept bugging the administration and they finally went along with Siegel probably in recompense for having to deal with all those Red Hill voters. Of course they would never admit to doing favors, so they clothed it in lofty civic justifications. Thank heavens today’s politicians would scorn such doings.

~~~~~~~~

Nancy Gardner, former Mayor of Newport Beach, long-time resident and daughter of Judge Robert Gardner, is a regular contributor to Stu News Newport.


Opponents and supporters speak up about “Elect Our Mayor” measure

By SARA HALL

As election day draws nearer, campaigners on both side of the controversial “Elect Our Mayor” issue are speaking up about the hottest topic on the local ballot.

Community group Speak Up Newport hosted a meeting Wednesday (May 11) featuring presenters on each side of Measure B, which is on the June 7 ballot for Newport Beach voters. Mayor Pro Tem Noah Blom spoke in support of the proposal, while longtime resident and local lawyer Walter Stahr spoke against the measure.

More than 60 people attended the meeting in person in the community room at the NB Civic Center and about 130 people watched it streaming online, on TV, or via Zoom.

Currently, voters citywide elect one councilmember from each of the seven districts. Every year during the single December meeting, there is a “changing of the guard,” when the council selects one of its members as its presiding officer, who has the title of mayor. They also select mayor pro tem at the same meeting.

If voters approve the measure, the person elected mayor would serve a term of four years and would only be eligible to hold the office of mayor for two, four-year terms in the person’s lifetime. Also, the mayor would be ineligible to hold office as a councilmember for the term of office that immediately follows a term to which the person was elected mayor.

The change would also give the mayor the discretion to determine the order of business and set council meeting agendas; however, at any council meeting, three councilmembers would have the discretion to add an item to a future agenda. Currently, the city manager sets council agendas.

Following a contentious three-hour discussion on October 26, council voted 4-3 in support of putting the charter amendment on the June ballot. Councilmembers Brad Avery, Diane Dixon and Joy Brenner dissented. 

Prior to the October 26 meeting, Councilmember Will O’Neill headed up the “Elect Our Mayor” campaign for several months. He and other volunteers were tasked with gathering thousands of Newport Beach voter signatures in order to get the measure placed on the ballot. 

But before the process was completed, on October 12 Blom requested the proposed measure be placed on a council agenda for discussion and possible action. In a 7-0 consensus, the council agreed to agendize the issue for a future meeting (October 26), at which time a majority of the council opted to forward the proposal to the June 7 election (bypassing the need for a petition with voter signatures). 

To his knowledge, there was no discussion in the community about wanting direct election of the mayor until the petition started to circulate, Stahr noted at the Speak Up meeting this week. It was never mentioned during the recent council candidate campaigns either, he added. 

It’s not like various issues in the city’s history that develop out of a discussion here or there in the community and eventually evolves into a proposal pitched to the council, he said, it didn’t naturally come about.

“This is not an issue that bubbled up from the people,” Stahr said. “This is an issue that sort of emerged full blown in the form of petitions that were circulated briefly and then voted by city council [to move forward to an election].”

By making it an A-1 item (the city policy that allows councilmembers to ask for an item to be placed on a future agenda) he did bring it up for public discussion, Blom countered. 

“This is a question that goes back to the people. This didn’t come to me. I want the people to vote,” Blom said. “My whole goal here is to hear what Newport has to say. I’m not afraid of the outcome, yes or no, that’s wonderful. That means the people got to choose, not me. I am not here to make the decisions, I’m here to listen to the constituents that got us here.”

Opponents and supporters city hall

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Photo by Sara Hall

Newport Beach City Hall

In October and again this week, Blom emphasized that it’s about letting the people decide. 

“Give the voice back to the people, because I trust them,” Blom said. “And if they make a decision that we don’t like, then you get to make another choice again and again and again continuously.”

There are a lot of citizens that are active in city matters, many in the audience at the Speak Up Newport meeting, but the majority of residents aren’t involved at that level, Blom pointed out. 

“Their voice gets muted out for who gets to lead the city,” he said. 

The people should – and do already – choose who leads them, said Stahr, echoing Blom’s point. 

“The people choose seven members of the city council, those are the leaders of Newport Beach,” he said. 

To become the mayor of Newport Beach, the person had to have been first elected to city council by the voters, he emphasized. Each eventual mayor was already elected by the people.

The people voted in aren’t necessarily “bad,” said Blom, answering a question from the audience, but the process can be. It can create a situation where some people might be vying for their own success or ambitions in order to get a title. They might make some negotiations to get there, which isn’t what he signed up for, he said. 

“I signed up to be a representative of the community, I didn’t sign up to be part of political wheeling and dealing so that somebody gets to wear the crown for a year and then pass it on to the next person,” Blom said. 

There are backroom deals in politics to make these decisions, he said. 

“There are elements at play continuously,” he added. 

Although Stahr strongly opposed that depiction. Councilmembers are elected to make important decisions, including which one among them will serve as mayor each year.

“It’s not illegitimate or shady and it doesn’t happen in a backroom, that’s just wrong,” Stahr said. “It happens in a public meeting.” 

Residents can attend the meeting and comment, he noted. 

A discussion between two councilmembers may happen beforehand, usually to determine a person’s interest in serving as mayor or mayor pro tem. It happened as recently as 2020 when O’Neill asked Avery about transitioning during COVID (which O’Neill mentioned during his comments on the “election of mayor” item at the Dec. 8, 2020, meeting). That prior discussion led O’Neill to feel confident that Avery knows the job and responsibilities, and would “rise to the occasion.”

For Blom, after he was elected to the council in 2020, his first vote on the dais was for the next mayor. Blom was the sole dissenting vote in the 6-1 decision at the December 2020 meeting to select Avery as the city’s next mayor.

“My very first vote on City Council was one of the most disturbing that I had,” Blom said at the SUN meeting this week. “The opposition wasn’t necessarily for the person that we were choosing, it was for the process. Because I saw the way that process worked and it was probably one of the most disheartening things I’ve seen. Because it wasn’t a vote of the people. It wasn’t looking around for the best [person] for that role, it was about turn and tradition.”

That shouldn’t be why a person leads the city, he added. It shouldn’t be for power or so someone can say they got to be mayor, it should be because they love the city, Blom said.

Although at the time, Blom explained the sole dissenting vote and his nomination of O’Neill for mayor was because O’Neill had done an amazing job during the pandemic in 2020 and that they shouldn’t change it since the city was doing so well. 

O’Neill had “put forth the ideals of Newport,” Blom said at the December 2020 meeting. He was the “right choice” to keep the city strong for the next year, he added. 

“Newport Beach emphatically has asked me from all angles and all levels for this,” Blom said at the meeting, reiterating some of the praise he heard from residents about O’Neill. They need to represent and act on the views of the residents, he said, not their own opinions or aspirations, Blom said.

Opponents and supporters mayors

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Photo by Ed Olen

Former Newport Beach mayors at the 2021 Mayor’s Reception

At that same December 2020 meeting, O’Neill mentioned that some residents had reached out and supported his work as mayor. He also noted that it can be confusing that they rotate the mayoral position among themselves after being elected to the council. 

“It’s a tradition that is held, actually, in most cities around Orange County,” O’Neill said at the 2020 meeting. 

Most years, the positions of mayor and mayor pro tem are “largely ceremonial,” O’Neill said, agreeing with a public comment, but 2020 and 2021 weren’t like most years. There were very few actual ceremonies, O’Neill pointed out, and the role was a “bit beyond” that capacity during those years. 

O’Neill also commented that he supported Avery as the city’s next mayor.

In another unusual “changing of the guard” meeting, the position for second in command of mayor pro tem was contested and a bit contentious during the 2021 transition. At the Dec. 14, 2021, meeting, the vote was split 4-3 between councilmembers Blom and Brenner. Ultimately, the majority of Blom, O’Neill, Kevin Muldoon and Marshall “Duffy” Duffield backed Blom for the spot.

A number of residents passionately spoke out in support of Brenner for the position. Public speakers noted Brenner has been on council since 2018, has been a longtime community advocate and Corona del Mar resident, has done a great job and is qualified for the role. Some also mentioned that her district in CdM has not been represented by the mayor or mayor pro tem since 2012, essentially muting those residents’ voices. 

Dixon also noted that she’d like to see the council continue their tradition recognizing councilmembers by seniority in terms of years of public service. 

There doesn’t appear to be any change in how the mayor pro tem is selected mentioned in the text of the measure. 

“The proponents of Measure B say that this is a simple issue, but the text of measure B…runs for three printed pages with some fine print,” Stahr said this week at the SUN meeting “If Measure B passes, it’s that text that’s going to matter.”

There are even sections of the measure he doesn’t understand and could be argued in different ways, he added. 

“I am afraid when I look at the fine print,” Stahr said, responding to Blom’s comment about opposition based on fear. “I am concerned that if we adopt this measure that some of that fine print is going to come back – maybe not in a year, maybe in 10 years – and cause problems that we don’t need.”

A few key issues discussed at the SUN meeting this week include: Term limits; power of the mayor, councilmembers and city manager; and setting the agenda.

Currently, the charter says that the mayor serves at the pleasure of city council. By tradition, that term is typically one year, Stahr said, but there’s nothing in the charter that limits it to that timeframe. If the mayor is doing a good job, a majority of the council can vote to extend it for another year. If not, they can choose a new mayor when that year is up, Stahr said.

If Measure B passes, the term of the mayor will be four years (which a person can serve twice).

They had a choice when they drafted this measure, Stahr commented. They could have followed the approach of several other local cities with elected mayors with a two-year term, or, in another approach followed by other cities, set a term limit that combines the terms served on city council with the terms served as mayor (a combined maximum of eight years on council and/or as mayor, for example).

“But they didn’t do that,” he said. 

It seems that a person could complete eight years on city council, then be elected as mayor for a term of four years, and then possibly get re-elected as mayor for another four years, Stahr predicted, which would result in one person serving 16 years.

Currently, if the mayor were to resign or die, the remaining members would select a fellow member of the council to serve as mayor for the remainder of the year. Under Measure B, if that were to happen, a special election would need to be held unless it coincides with an already scheduled election, which are expensive and risky, Stahr said. 

Referencing the concern over term limits for the new mayoral position, Blom noted that past city managers have held their position for a decade or more. The new mayor role would be limited to four years and voters can decide to re-elect that person for a second term of four years or vote someone else in, he explained. 

“That’s an interesting thought to me, that it steals power away from our city manager,” Blom said. 

He respects current City Manager Grace Leung, Blom said, commending her talent and experience. 

“But in any great company, you also have a board of directors and you have a chairman of the board,” he added. “A powerful CEO is still great, running this city is a privilege, it’s not a problem.”

“So those arguments fall flat to me,” he added.

Addressing the counterpoint that “power is being stolen,” Blom questioned who currently held the power and how that would change if the measure passes. 

“Who has it now? All the councilmembers?” Blom asked. “I have the power to put something on the agenda, that’s why this ballot measure is here.” 

That power won’t be abandoned if the measure gets approved, councilmembers will still have the power to put items on the agenda (with the concurrence of at least three councilmembers), Blom said. 

“The difference is, right now, is that the city manager has the power to set the agenda,” Blom said. 

Setting the agenda has been a contentious point with Measure B that has been used in the opposing campaign, he said. 

“The agenda. That scary document that says what we’re going do at a meeting,” Blom joked. 

It’s just the guidelines for the meeting, he said, the city manager will still be part of that, they will still work on contracts and department heads will still discuss important issues at study sessions. 

“The difference is that there’s someone now that would be accountable to all of you, continuously,” Blom said. That “is the power that we want. We want to give it back, we don’t want it in the bureaucracy. We don’t want it in this backroom trading.”

The agenda is what they follow to move forward, Blom said. Any concerned citizen can rally an opinion and eventually get an item on the agenda. They’ll study it, discuss it and potentially take action. That’s what the system is about, he said. 

“This doesn’t give one person power to create the schedule,” Blom said. “The schedule is not power.”

Although there’s more than that to what setting the agenda actually means, Stahr noted. 

The mayor currently doesn’t typically have any special power other than to run the meeting.

“Under the language of Measure B the mayor will have sole charge of the city’s agenda with one poorly drafted exception,” Stahr said.

Quoting the measure text, Stahr read: “With the concurrence of at least three members of the city council at any public meeting, an item may be added to a future city council agenda.”

“May” is an interesting word, he noted.

“Does that mean that it may not if the mayor says ‘I don’t want it?’ I’m not sure,” Stahr said. “If I had drafted it, I would have used the word ‘shall.’”

And the word “future” is also vague, he added. 

“What if the mayor says ‘Yeah, it will go on the agenda – next year.’ Is the mayor violating the language of the charter? I’m not sure,” Stahr said. 

Even more importantly is the informal power that the mayor will have, Stahr said. 

“The mayor is going to have allies on the council because of the mayor’s power to raise funds and those allies are going to give the mayor the votes that he needs to have yet more power,” Stahr said. 

Considering the list of the donors to Measure B, about half come from addresses outside of Newport Beach, even out of state, Stahr noted. 

“Why are these people from outside of Newport Beach donating money to change our city charter?” Stahr asked. “I think it’s pretty clear. They expect the mayor to be powerful and they hope the mayor is going to use that power to help them.”

This is evident in the postcard mailed out to voters supporting the measure, said Stahr, holding up a large glossy mailer. On one side a sketch shows the mayor directly connected to the voters.

“The city council has disappeared,” Stahr said. Even if proponents argue that council still exists, “sometimes a picture is worth 1,000 words. What they’re looking for is a system in which the mayor is so important and so powerful that the city councilmembers are irrelevant.”

Blom noted that a lot of the out-of-town donors are business addresses for local residents.

“Our mayor right now is ceremonial and they don’t have a lot of that ability to make real change,” Blom said. 

An elected mayor could make a difference and in four years, if the people don’t like the changes made, they can vote again, he noted. 

This isn’t a ceremonial position, this isn’t a ceremonial city, Blom said. Newport Beach is a great city and the jewel of the West Coast, he commented, and that will be proven over the next 100 years. 

“We’ll see it grow in just the right way, but right now we can’t get bogged down with in the semantics of the contract,” Blom said. “The question really sits out there: Should the people vote for who leads us?...The real question is: Do we not like the contract that was put forth for how they lead?”

Most people probably don’t know who the current mayor is, Blom said, they might think of a former mayor or another councilmember. 

“That tells me that we don’t have the congruency in the city that we need for that figurehead,” Blom said, “for that person to lead us in the direction that the community wants.”

~~~~~~~~

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


Speak Up Newport to present discussion on Measure B

Many are calling it the most important issue ever facing the Newport Beach electorate. The question is, “Who should elect our mayor?”

Speak Up Newport will present representatives discussing both sides at their upcoming May meeting, scheduled for Wednesday, May 11 at the Civic Center Community Room. The event begins with a 5:15 p.m. reception, followed by the program at 6 p.m.

Presenting the supporting side of Measure B will be Newport Beach Mayor Pro Tem Noah Blom, while author and Newport Beach resident Walter Stahr will present the case for opposing Measure B.

Measure B is on the June 7th ballot and proposes changing the present system of the city council electing the mayor to a one-year term annually to a General Election allowing the electorate to vote for the mayor for a four-year term.

Speak Up Newport Noah Blom

Photos courtesy of Speak Up Newport

Newport Beach Mayor Pro Tem Noah Blom

Blom was born and raised in Newport Beach before leaving after high school to travel the country, first for school in San Francisco, New York and Europe, and later for business in Vermont, New York, Washington, D.C., Miami, Dallas, Las Vegas, San Francisco and Los Angeles. 

He is a chef-turned-restaurateur, returning home to Newport Beach, where he met his wife, Marin. The two have opened and operated a number of restaurants in Newport Beach and surrounding Orange County cities.

Speak Up Newport Walter Stahr

Author Walter Stahr

Stahr grew up in Arcadia, California, and then attended Stanford University, before heading back to Harvard, where he studied law and public policy.

Upon graduation, Stahr joined the Washington office of an international law firm, Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. In 1990, he joined the Securities & Exchange Commission, working for several years in the chairman’s office, writing speeches and congressional testimony, advising on enforcement cases.

In the summer of 2014, they moved to Southern California, to be closer to his parents and their children.

He is an author publishing his first book on John Jay in 2005; his second book on Seward, in 2012; his third book on Stanton, in 2017. He is now working on a fourth book, a biography of Salmon P. Chase.

His wife, Dr. Masami Miyauchi Stahr, is a mathematics teacher at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School.

There is no registration required to attend the free live event. For those choosing to watch through the free webinar, register at www.speakupnewport.com/measure-b-2022.


Explore Upper Newport Bay

OC Parks manages nearly 60,000 acres of parks, historical and coastal facilities and open space for the County of Orange as part of OC Community Resources. For more information, visit www.ocparks.com.

Here in your own backyard, check out the upcoming events at Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve to get you exploring the outdoors.

Explore Upper Newport Bay kayaking

Courtesy of Newport Bay Conservancy

Kayaking Upper Newport Bay

Wild Tales: Fridays, May 6, 13, 20, 27. Wild Tales will be offered every Friday from 10-10:45 a.m. and includes a different outdoor story time in their newly renovated amphitheater, an age-appropriate hike and a craft project in their classroom. Activities are designed for ages 2-4, but all are welcome. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Accessibility Day at the Bay: Saturday, May 7. Accessibility Day at the Bay from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. introduces deaf and hard of hearing children and their parents to the Back Bay to explore the area and engage in hands-on crafts and activities. Learn about the Bay’s ecology, habitats, plants, animals and more. Activities may include: a guided hike, a visual scavenger hunt in the Muth Center, a shell impressions activity and scat identification activity. Free. Register at www.DHHattheBay.eventbrite.com.

Second Sunday Restoration: Sunday, May 8. Join Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve staff and volunteers from 9-11:30 a.m. in enhancing the Bay’s habitat for local wildlife. Activities may include non-native plant removal, planting natives, watering, trash cleanup and butterfly garden maintenance. No experience is necessary. Please bring a hat, sunscreen, snacks, etc. Water and tools are provided. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Global Big Day at the Bay: Saturday, May 14. The Global Big Day is an international bird-watching event sponsored by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This year, come participate at Upper Newport Bay from 8-10 a.m. Last year, more than 51,000 people from 192 countries participated and they are hoping to break that record this year. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Snakes at the Bay: Sunday, May 15. Learn about the slithery, not slimy snakes who live at Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and are a very beneficial part of the ecosystem. The program takes place from 1-3 p.m. and begins at the newly renovated Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center amphitheater where you will meet live, non-venomous native snakes up close and in person. After learning from their animal ambassadors, you will head out on the trails and see if you can find any wild snakes around the Bay. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Full Moon Hike – Total Lunar Eclipse Edition: Sunday, May 15. Meet at the Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center for a walk around the Bay from 7:30-10 p.m. You will see and hear nocturnal animals as the “night shift” clocks in for duty. As you walk, you will count down until moon rise and be greeted with a total lunar eclipse in progress when it does. If conditions are favorable, you will also examine the moon through their telescope after the hike. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Backyard Bugs: Saturday, May 21. Insects are the most diverse group of animals on planet Earth and make up 80% of all known species. There are more different kinds of bugs than all the other types of animals combined. Join a family friendly trek around Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve from 1-3 p.m. to learn all about these amazing animals who have perfected the art of ecological specialization. Insects may have a reputation for being icky, but in fact, they are essential pollinators who are needed to sustain life on our planet. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Family Walk at the Bay: Sunday, May 22. Join an easy, stroller-friendly walk along Upper Newport Bay from 10-11:30 a.m. to enjoy all the sights, sounds and smells of spring. You will stay on the paved Bayview Trail and pause frequently to observe birds, bugs, wildflowers, and any other wildlife that happens to be present. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Junior Ranger Day at the Bay: Sunday, May 22. Come earn your Junior Ranger Badge and Certificate at Upper Newport Bay from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Participants will go on a guided hike, complete the junior ranger activity book and take the junior ranger oath. Activities will be designed for learners in the 9-12 age range, but everyone is welcome. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.

Crafty Kids Sunday: Sunday, May 29. Come join a fun, themed craft project anytime between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Crafty Kids Sunday features free craft activities in the Muth Interpretive Center’s Discovery Classroom. Register at www.letsgetoutside.org/ocparks/activities.


Hoag returns as title sponsor of MOMS Orange County’s Healthy Beginnings fundraiser

MOMS Orange County, the county’s largest nonprofit dedicated solely to newborn and pregnancy health, will mark 30 years of community service during its annual Healthy Beginnings, Bright Futures virtual celebration on Thursday, May 12. Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian is the title sponsor of this year’s fundraiser to stream on Facebook and YouTube @momsorangecounty at 4 p.m. and free to attend. An opportunity drawing will be held on Friday, May 13 on Facebook Live at 11:30 a.m.

Voice over artist/actor Danielle St. Germain will emcee the afternoon affair to include moving client stories, online auction, celebratory anniversary toast and a special presentation by MOMS OC founder Dottie Andrews. All proceeds will fund the nonprofit’s educational and support services that provide a strong, healthy foundation for babies and their families.

Hoag’s title sponsorship funds will specifically help provide intensive home visitation to new and expecting mothers who are vulnerable to domestic violence and maternal mental health concerns. 

Hoag returns St. Germain

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Submitted photo

(L-R) Event emcee Danielle St. Germain, Client speaker Jesi Sinner, MOMS OC founder Dottie Andrews and CEO Dave Lugo

“We are grateful to Hoag for their support of MOMS Orange County in our 30th year of helping Orange County moms and families deliver and raise healthy babies. While many things have changed since we formed 30 years ago in response to a prenatal healthcare crisis, our programs have evolved and expanded to serve more than 5,000 mothers, babies and fathers families each year,” said MOMS Orange County CEO Dave Lugo.

MOMS Orange County services are aimed at disrupting the combined dynamics of poverty, lack of health insurance, and barriers to care with core programs including home visitation and group health education for low-income participants.

Event registration is available at www.momsorangecounty.org/hbbf/. The online auction opens on May 5 through May 13 and will offer a variety of wellness, sports and luxury items.

For event or sponsorship information, contact Yazmin Dukes at 714.352.3401. For more information about MOMS Orange County, visit www.momsorangecounty.org.

MOMS Orange County formed 30 years ago in response to a crisis in access to prenatal healthcare for low-income, at-risk women. Today, MOMS Orange County serves more than 2,500 low-income families annually, directly influencing improvements in birth outcomes, maternal health and developmental indicators among infants within a highly disadvantaged population.


SCR takes a hilarious look at “tiger parenting” with Tiger Style! by Mike Lew

South Coast Repertory (David Ivers, Artistic Director and Paula Tomei, Managing Director) presents Mike Lew’s critically acclaimed look at “tiger parenting,” Tiger Style! directed by Ralph B. Peña, gracing the Julianne Argyros Stage on May 15-June 5.

Written as a witty response to Amy Chua’s 2011 New York Times best-selling memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, Tiger Style! answers the question: What happens when “tiger parenting” goes wrong?” Meet Albert and Jennifer Chen – brother and sister, once brilliant students and musicians, now epic failures leading unfulfilling lives. The problem? Their parents set unrealistic standards. The solution? Escape from Irvine and go on an “Asian Freedom Tour” to Shenzhen, China – a hilarious, eye-opening journey filled with colorful characters, intrigue and surprise.

Lew explores the siblings’ quest for self-worth and inner fulfillment, showing tiger parenting’s effects on children and subsequently, as adults. On their journeys, the Chens battle cultural stereotypes, assumptions about millennials and learn that you can go home again.

SCR takes Mike Lew

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Photos courtesy of SCR

Playwright Mike Lew

Tiger Style!  explores some of the cultural connections to being Asian, both here in the U.S. and in China. Its story about community and family resonates across generations and reminds us of the power, humor pathos and intimacy of family in its vast and varied forms,” Ivers said. “And one of the many things that I love about our production of this dynamic play is that we’ve been able to bring together two powerhouse artists with roots in Southern California to tell a story that begins here – in Irvine.”

SCR takes Ralph Pena

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Director Ralph B. Peña

An award-winning playwright, Lew loosely based some of Tiger Style’s! foundation on his own upbringing in La Jolla. Lew earned a BA in Theatre (directing) and English (writing) from Yale and an artist diploma in playwriting from Juilliard. Along with Tiger Style! Lew’s other plays include Teenage Dick, recently produced by the Pasadena Playhouse, Bike America, microcrisis, Moustache Guys and the book to the musical Bhangin’ It which earned Lew the Richard Rodgers Award. Lew’s other honors include the Kleban, PEN Emerging Playwright, Lanford Wilson, Helen Merrill, Heideman and Kendeda awards.

SCR’s production reunites Lew with Peña, who previous directed Lew’s microcrisis for the Ma-Yi Theater Company in New York.

 Founding member and current artistic director of Ma-Yi Theater Company, Peña helped build Ma-Yi into one of the country’s most prominent Asian American theatres. He received an Obie Award and Drama Desk Award for his work on The Romance of Magna Rubio by Lonnie Carter with Loy Arcenas, based on a short story by Carlos Bulosan. Peña is also a produced playwright, the author of Flipzoids, Project: Balangiga, This End Up and Loose Leaf Bindings. Peña, who grew up in Tustin, Lake Forest and Laguna Beach, makes his SCR directorial debut.

Tiger Style! features Jon Norman Schneider (Albert Chen), Amy Kim Waschke (Jennifer Chen), Derek Manson (Russ The Bus/Reggie/Customs Guy), Ryun Yu (Tzi Chuan/Melvin/Dad/General Tso) and Emily Kuroda (Therapist/Mom/Cousin Chen/Matchmaker).

Tickets are now on sale and range in price from $26-$93, with additional discounts available for educators, seniors and theatergoers ages 25 and under. Tickets may be purchased online, or by phone at 714.708.5555. 

Related Information for Tiger Style!

–Previews run Sunday, May 15 at 2 p.m. and Tuesday, May. 17-Thursday, May 19 at 7:45 p.m.

–Regular performances

Note: Friday, May 20 is an invitation-only performance.

~Evening Performances: Wednesdays and Thursdays, at 7:45 p.m.: May 25-26, June 1-2; and Fridays, Saturdays, at 7:45 p.m.: May 21, May 28, June 4.

~Matinees: Saturdays at 2 p.m.: May 21, May 28, June 4 and Sundays at 2 p.m.: May 22, May 29, June 5. ASL-interpreted: Saturday, June 4, at 2 p.m.

Special Events

Post-Show Discussions: Tuesday, May 17 (Director/Designer Conversation with Director Ralph B. Peña and members of the design team); Wednesday, May 25 (Actor Conversation with cast members); Wednesday, June 1 (Deep Dive, where audience members share their thoughts about the play in a respectful discussion hosted by SCR’s artistic staff); Thursday, June 2 (Performance Perspective discussing the theme of Tiger Style!); Friday, June 3 (Playwright/Dramaturg Conversation). All discussions take place after the play on the Segerstrom Stage.

Inside the Season: Saturday, May 28 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Led by members of SCR’s literary staff, this lively two-hour session includes in-depth interviews with cast members and artists from the production staff, revealing secrets and offering insights into SCR’s production of Tiger Style! Segerstrom Stage. Tickets are $12 and may be purchased in advance or at the door.

Upcoming Productions: Mozart & Salieri (a collaboration with the Pacific Symphony), May 19-21. Million Dollar Quartet (Outside SCR at Mission San Juan Capistrano) July 30-August 21.

 More information is available at www.scr.org.

South Coast Repertory (SCR) is located at 655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. Parking is available on Park Center Drive, off Anton Boulevard.


Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents internationally acclaimed vocalist Belinda Carlisle

Segerstrom Center for the Arts presents Grammy nominated and former lead singer of legendary girl group The Go-Go’s Belinda Carlisle, returning to the Center on November 2 at 8 p.m. in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall.

Segerstrom Center Belinda Carlisle

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Courtesy of scfta.org

Belinda Carlisle

Her solo career has marked her legendary status, and this fall she brings her multi-dimensional, internationally acclaimed recording catalog to Costa Mesa for a one-night only performance of her greatest hits. Carlisle’s talents continue to stand the test of time, remaining relevant after nearly four decades in the business. The gifted and glamorous singer-songwriter has indelibly touched the hearts of pop fans around the world with her unique blend of gutsy vocals, emotively charged melodies and picturesque lyrics. 

Single tickets for Belinda Carlisle start at $39 and are on sale now 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 Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.


Good Morning CdM! to address Ballot Measure B

Come learn more about Ballot Measure B at the upcoming Good Morning CdM! meeting taking place on Thursday, May 12 from 7:30-9:30 a.m. at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club.

The timely topic to be discussed is Ballot Measure B – City of Newport Beach Mayor Elections. Featured speakers are Newport Beach Councilmember Will O’Neill, who served as mayor in 2020 and Homer Bludau, former Newport Beach City Manager, who served 1999-2009.

Good Morning O'Neill  Good Morning Bludau

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Photo of Will O’Neill courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Photo of Homer Bludau by Bleu Cotton Photography

(L-R) Newport Beach Councilmember Will O’Neill and former Newport Beach City Manager Homer Bludau

The meeting will also feature legislative updates from the offices of local representatives including NB City Councilwoman, Joy Brenner, District 6; Congresswoman Michelle Steel, District 48; Assemblywoman, Cottie Petrie-Norris, District 74 and O.C. Supervisor, Lisa Bartlett, District 5.

The free event is open to the public and no reservation is necessary. Complimentary coffee and pastry will be available.

Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club is located at 1601 Bayside Drive, Corona del Mar.


Coastal Commission meets this week 

The California Coastal Commission meets Wednesday, May 11 through Friday, May 14 in the Fountain Terrace Room of the Hilton/Orange County Costa Mesa, 3050 Bristol St., in Costa Mesa. 

The sessions, which can be followed at www.coastal.ca.gov/mtgcurr.html, begin each day at 9 a.m. The agenda is available at www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/agenda/#/2022/5.

Only one item pertaining to Newport Beach is on the agenda and it comes up under the Consent Calendar. The item is an application by Jay and Nancy Schulman to reinforce the bulkhead by adding a new, 1’ 4.3” stem wall atop the existing bulkhead coping, and then installing two new tiebacks inserted into the bulkhead coping extending to a new, landward deadman at the property of 1615 Bay Ave.

The meeting will be conducted with public participation possible both virtually through video and teleconference, and in person. The live stream is available here.

The next meetings of the Coastal Commission will be June 8-10.


OC Live concert series culminates at Newport Dunes

OC Live, an inaugural concert series bringing the power of live music to multiple venues in Orange County with live music performances from more than 20 local artists, across six days, at multiple venues, takes place May 10-15.

OC Live Flashback

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Photo by Jeff Farsai

Flashback Heart Attack is among the headliners at OC Live

Attendees can expect performances from popular SoCal artists including Flashback Heart Attack, Matt Costal, Rebel ShakeDown, Hot Rod Trio, David Rosales, Fabulous Nomads, Rocket talk and Beaux Gris Gris, and many more.

The concert week closes out at Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina.

What makes this series special is that OC Live is presented by Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley via Orange County’s Arts-Related Grant Relief Program who used $150,000 in grants to give to the local musicians, venues and small businesses via this event. To purchase tickets, go here.

Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina is located at 1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach.


GritCycle leads Orange County to raise more than $40,000 for Autism Action Month

On Saturday, April 23, the OC fitness community rallied together in support of Autism Action month to raise more than $40,000 in support of TACA Now.

The month-long collaborative fundraising goal brought multiple industries together to take action in standing up for autism acceptance and help struggling families coping with autism. Newport Beach-based GritCycle dedicated the entire Saturday at their four locations to TACA – booking more than 850 rides for the cause with $5 for every bike booked benefitting TACA and implemented a competitive raffle sponsored by esteemed local businesses with 100% of the proceeds from raffle ticket sales donated to the cause. 

GritCycle leads trio

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(L-R) Jon Gray, owner of GritCycle, Alexandra Taylor and Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon at the GritCycle post-event party at Bosscat Kitchen & Libations

Attending the event were GritCycle owners Jon and Gail Gray, CEO of TACA now Lisa Ackerman, Newport Beach Mayor Kevin Muldoon, publicist Alexandra Taylor, Miss Mini Donuts + Bosscat Kitchen founder Leslie Nguyen, TACA ambassador Emily Grant, Gerard Widder, managing director Resort at Pelican Hill, Jessica Vilchis, NBC Universal Host and Valentina Khan of Investors Philanthropic. The audience consisted of influentials in the small business community of OC and Long Beach, avid cycling enthusiasts, fitness coaches, TACA families, local restaurant owners and autism advocates of The Autism Community in Action. 

GritCycle hosted a post-ride alfresco event celebration with an auction raffle at Bosscat Kitchen & Libations in Newport Beach, where all attendees enjoyed a signature cocktail “Let’s TACA-bout it,” Bosscat Kitchen bites and customized Miss Mini Donuts. GritCycle rider and TACA advocate Emily Grant spoke on personal experience raising her son with autism. Guests enjoyed bidding on experiences from local sponsors including Pelican Hill Resort, Newport Beach Tennis + Pickleball Club, Broadway by Amar Santana, Lido House Hotel, Arc Butcher + Baker, Boxing Lab, Mastro’s Ocean Club and Wild Goose Tavern.

For more information on TACA, visit https://tacanow.org.


Hoag introduces artificial intelligence in colonoscopy screening

Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian is the first hospital in California to offer an artificial intelligence (AI) enhancement to patients receiving a colonoscopy. Using the GI GeniusTM intelligent endoscopy module, Hoag’s physicians have begun putting the promise of AI to work in detecting polyps and other colorectal abnormalities with added confidence.

“This is a powerful new tool in our toolbox, an innovation that moves the needle in the fight against colorectal cancer,” said Robert T. Braithwaite, president and CEO of Hoag. “We are excited to be the first hospital in the state to offer this type of technology to our patients.”

GI Genius™ is a computer-aided detection (CADe) system that uses advanced AI to detect the presence of possible precancerous lesions during a colonoscopy. The colonoscopy images are processed using advanced algorithms that can identify and mark polyp abnormalities in real time, including those that could otherwise go undetected by the human eye.

Finding these small lesions helps increase the adenoma, or pre-cancerous, detection rate (ADR). Studies show that every 1% increase in ADR reduces the risk of colorectal cancer by 3%. A leader in bringing meaningful innovation to patient care, Hoag adopted the new technology to help patients prevent colorectal cancer.

Hoag introduces Paul Lee

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Courtesy of Hoag Hospital

Paul Lee, M.D., chief of service for the GI Hospitalists Program

“Colorectal cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S. and screening rates have decreased dramatically in recent years. The earlier we can detect a cancerous polyp and the more precise we can be, the better off a patient will be,” said Paul Lee, M.D., chief of service for the GI Hospitalists Program. “This technology is already making an impact, and I’m proud that we are putting innovation to work to advance patient care and save lives.”

Ranked nationally in Gastroenterology and GI Surgery by U.S. News & World Report, Hoag Digestive Health Institute offers comprehensive digestive health services in the areas of colorectal, esophagus and stomach, inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatic disease, hepatobiliary disease (biliary, liver and gallbladder) and bariatric weight loss surgery. 

For more information, visit www.hoag.org/GIGenius.


Regattas and Races…

Regattas and Races 5.10

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

NHYC 

2022 NHYC Twilights

May Series

May 5

Finn (3 races)

1 Brad Dwan, NHYC, Total 5

2 Robert Kinney, NHYC, Total 6

3 Keith Yonkers, NHYC, Total 8

4 Michael Arrigo, NHYC, Total 12

Harbor 20 A (2 races)

1 Bose/Elliot, BCYC, Total 4

2 K. Wiese/A. Wiese, NHYC, Total 4

3 Peter Stemler, NHYC, Total 4

4 Douglas Rastello, NHYC, Total 9

5 Bob Yates, NHYC, Total 9

6 Campbell/Barnard, NHYC, Total 12

7 Nick Madigan, NHYC, Total 12

8 E. Kimball/A. Costello Kimball, ABYC, Total 12

9 Cheadle/Schupak, BYC, Total 12

Harbor 20 B (2 races)

1 P. Haynes/D. Haynes, BCYC, Total 2

2 Hill/Manning, BCYC, Total 4

3 n/a, n/a, Total 6

4 Tom Fischbacher, BSSB, Total 8

5 Watanabe/Sutherland, UCISA, Total 11

6 Dick Somers, NHYC, Total 11

7 Thomas Corkett, NHYC, Total 14

Harbor 20 C (2 races)

1 Chris Jester, NHYC, Total 3

2 Atkins/Thompson, LIYC, Total 3

3 Jaime Atkins, n/a, Total 6

4 Bill Brooks, NHYC, Total 6

5 C. Bailey/J. Bailey, NHYC, Total 6

Lehman 12 (3 races)

1 J. La Dow/Dahl, NHYC, Total 4

2 Michael Ramming, NHYC, Total 10

3 Carolyn Smith, NHYC, Total 11

4 Clark/Olmstead, NHYC, Total 13

5 W. La Dow/Hampton, NHYC, Total 13

6 M. Dahl/H. Dahl, NHYC, Total 15

7 Macdonald/Blackman, NHYC, Total 18

8 Hause/Kraus, NHYC, Total 24

9 Curtiss/Moore, NHYC, Total 24

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..


There are many types of cancer – City of Hope’s focus is yours

Amrita Krishnan, M.D., FACP, knew from an early age that she wanted to be a doctor. Her mother is a physician, so spending time in hospitals and labs felt natural.

A Newport Beach resident and the director of City of Hope’s Judy and Bernard Briskin Center for Multiple Myeloma Research, Dr. Krishnan is among the noted cancer specialists practicing at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. She has been a key member of the City of Hope team since 1996.

“Along with outstanding science, we’re known for how we care for people with cancer, from diagnosis to treatment and recovery,” said Dr. Krishnan.

“City of Hope is unique in our support for you as a whole person, an individual. I learn something from every person who comes to me for care, and it is an honor to walk with them. I’m proud to be part of an organization that offers people with cancer such extraordinary expertise and delivers it with uncompromising compassion.”

There are many Krishnan

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Courtesy of City of Hope Orange County

Amrita Krishnan, M.D., FACP

Equally driven as a clinician and researcher, Dr. Krishnan is the lead investigator of a drug in a new class of therapies, bispecific antibody T cell engagers, which shows great promise against multiple myeloma. 

“Multiple myeloma (MM) is the second most commonly diagnosed blood cancer, but many people know little about it. The good news is that people are living longer with MM thanks to research centers like City of Hope. One day we’re going to be able to use that word ‘cure,’ and I strongly believe we’re getting closer to that time.”

The Future is Hope

Many innovative treatments for multiple myeloma and other forms of cancer were developed or refined at City of Hope, an advanced research and treatment center for cancer, and one of only 52 NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the U.S.

“We are a leader in targeted therapy that uses drugs or other substances to identify and attack cancer cells more precisely and are at the forefront of immunotherapy, which is reengineering the body’s immune system and making it smarter to fight cancer,” said Dr. Krishnan. “We are also an innovator in bone marrow and stem cell transplants and CAR T cell therapies. When it comes to cancer, this is truly the place to seek treatment.”

City of Hope is redefining the delivery of advanced cancer care at its four Orange County locations, including two in Newport Beach, and at Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County, nearing completion in Irvine.

The NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center offers access to highly specialized cancer care experts, nearly 1,000 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.

“All City of Hope Orange County locations are connected to the Irvine campus, which means our level of advanced cancer care and medical science is available to more people,” said Dr. Krishnan. “Cancer is not one disease, and it’s vital that you get advice from an expert who specializes in your particular kind of cancer before you get treatment.”

Visit www.cityofhope.org/OC to learn more. To make an appointment at any of the four City of Hope Orange County locations, call:

–Newport Beach Fashion Island: 949.763.2204

–Newport Beach Lido: 949.999.1400

–Irvine Sand Canyon: 949.333.7580

–Huntington Beach: 714.252.9415

This is paid content by City of Hope Orange County. For more information on City of Hope Orange County Newport Beach locations, go here.


Measure B debates and discussion go on…and on

By AMY SENK

Is it June yet? Because I for one will be happy when this election cycle is done. It’s strange, because I normally really enjoy following local political issues, and breaking them down and looking at them from all sides. Measure B, though, has exhausted me. My white flag is about to start waving and our ballots are just being mailed this week.

I’ve already sat through several presentations and discussions on the question about whether Newport Beach voters should directly elect their mayor, which is the most basic way to explain what Measure B is about. Like most things, however, especially in politics, the devil’s in the details, and when you listen to the No on B side, there are serious questions and concerns that arise. It’s actually a very important decision, and the election outcome could change Newport Beach quite dramatically.

Measure B yard sign

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Photos by Amy Senk

Yard sign shows support for Measure B

If you’ve missed the debates, or discussions, at the OASIS Senior Center last week (May 6), or at the Corona del Mar Residents Association’s Town Hall meeting the week before that, don’t fear – Speak Up Newport will host a Measure B discussion on Wednesday, May 11 with Councilmember Noah Blom and author and Corona del Mar resident Walter Stahr taking opposing sides in a discussion. On Thursday, May 12 at 7:30 a.m., the CdM Chamber of Commerce’s Good Morning CdM! event will feature another Measure B discussion featuring Councilmember Will O’Neill and former City Manager Homer Bludau.

One thing that seems a bit different to me this election season is the signs. During my drives around town, I have noticed all sorts of signs in recent weeks for different candidates as well as for and against Measure B. Some signs, as usual, were in public spaces, on light poles or in medians. The city has policies regulating this, but in other years, I’ve seen election signs everywhere, even for months after an election was over. 

Measure B yard sign and banner

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A yard sign and banner on a private home opposing Measure B

This year seems to be different, though, and it appears to have changed over the last week or so. 

I drove around this weekend and noticed many signs in private yards, but none in public spaces. I don’t know if I missed them or if the city is doing a better job removing them, but I’m grateful. If you want a sign, get one and display it on your own property. Don’t junk up parks and medians.

Meanwhile, speaking of the CdM Annual Town Hall meeting, which I mentioned previously. It took place on April 27 at Sherman Library Gardens & was a smashing success.

Measure B Stevens

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CdMRA President Debbie Stevens with NB City Council candidate Erik Weigand at the CdMRA meeting at Sherman Gardens

Measure B Svalstad

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CdM Chamber of Commerce Vice Chair Bernie Svalstad and CdMRA Vice President Sandy Haskell at the CdMRA meeting

Measure B Campbell

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(L-R) Newport Beach Community Development Deputy Director James W. Campbell and Community Development Director Simone Jurjis at the CdMRA meeting

Measure B Carlson

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(L-R) CdM resident Karen Carlson and Newport Beach Councilmember Joy Brenner at the CdMRA meeting

Measure B Scarbrough

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(L-R) Nancy Scarbrough, Charles Klobe and Newport Beach Councilmember Diane Dixon

I’ve attended many of these over the years, and this was the best one. There were about 200 people in attendance, a huge crowd, maybe the biggest ever, probably to learn more about Measure B. But I think people also were very excited to be back together at the event that had been COVID-canceled for two years previously. 

If you missed it, here is a video link to the CdMRA’s Measure B debate:

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


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members:

All of our city departments went above and beyond in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and that was especially true for the Newport Beach Fire Department. The volume of calls and demand for services for our firefighters, emergency medical personnel and lifeguards were higher than ever, and the type of response dictated by the pandemic was different than any of our staff had experienced in their careers. Department employees met these challenges at every turn, transporting patients for emergency medical care through each new wave of cases, setting up COVID testing sites and, as the first vaccines were distributed, getting quickly trained to administer vaccines, host local clinics and assist with the setup and administration of the county’s supersites.

In addition to providing emergency medical services throughout COVID, Newport Beach firefighters were deployed in a mutual aid capacity throughout the state in response to the devastating, record-breaking wildfire season that began in late 2020. The Fire Department was also closely involved in responding to the oil spill that occurred off the coast of Orange County in October 2021. 

This unique period is captured in an excellent publication developed by the Fire Department and recently released to the public, the 2020-21 Annual Report.

The report captures significant events from the pandemic years, key data points and statistics, along with an overview of the many important services provided by the department beyond emergency response, such as community outreach, public education and enforcement/inspection. I encourage you to take a look at the report for an impressive overview of how the Newport Beach Fire Department served the Newport Beach community in 2020 and 2021. And I offer my thanks and congratulations to all of our Fire Department employees for their excellent work and dedicated service to our community, especially during such extremely challenging time.

City Manager, Grace K. Leung

Permit Center Launches Text-Based Queuing

The city’s Community Development Department has introduced a new queueing system at the Permit Center. 

Customers visiting the Permit Center can now choose to receive text message notifications via mobile device, guiding them throughout the visit. Customers will be notified as they are checked in, called for service at the counter, or transferred to a different department staff member. A final text message will notify that service has been completed, including a link to our customer satisfaction survey

This new feature enables visitors to step away from the lobby while waiting for service. Future enhancements will allow the option to check-in with a mobile device or from our new stationary kiosk. Our goal is to provide a better overall experience when doing business at the Permit Center. The system also tracks the applicants’ wait times, which will help the city better serve visitors and continue to improve the Permit Center experience.

Newport Coast Elementary Awarded 2022 Youth Track & Field Meet of Champions Spirit Award

Each year following the Newport Beach Youth Track & Field Meet of Champions, the Recreation & Senior Services Department gives the Spirit Award to a Newport Beach school for overall participation and achievement during the meet. This year’s winner, for the first time in school history, was Newport Coast Elementary, led by Coach Rita Lee.

All schools with athletes who compete in the city’s meet are eligible to win the Spirit Award. The winner is determined by tallying scores for each athlete who places 1st through 6th place. This perpetual trophy has been awarded since 2006 and is held on display at the victor’s school until the following year’s event. Congratulations to the Newport Coast Coyotes Track Club!

Spring Campers Visit Knott’s, Hold Animals

Over spring break, city camp participants visited Knott’s Berry Farm for roller coasters and the boysenberry festival. Meanwhile, Newport Coast Community Center was filled with excitement and eagerness from Preschool Campers waiting to touch and hold a variety of animals, including a tarantula and a python. The fun will continue this summer with more than 400 camps to choose from. Register today at www.campnewport.com.

Public Works Springs Into Summer Beach Mode – Part II

The city’s beach maintenance crews are attending to the shoreline and grooming our beaches in preparation for the summer tourist season. Wind fencing installed in the fall to reduce windblown sand along the Oceanfront Boardwalk and many street ends are being removed to increase accessibility.

The protective sand berms at the Balboa Pier are getting a touch-up as well, since regular foot traffic and winds continually lower their height. Berms need to be monitored and maintained to keep high surf from flooding parking lots, homes and businesses.

In the Back Bay, the log trash boom installed before every winter season is being removed in preparation for summer recreational activities at the Aquatic Center and Back Bay. The log boom is placed at the San Diego Creek and is used to catch debris that flows down the river during the rainy season. On average, the log boom collects around 250 cubic yards of debris a year, an amount that would fill 22 large dump trucks.

City trash cans and fire rings removed during the winter to be cleaned, repaired and repainted were recently re-installed or replaced as needed.

Police Department Hosts Red Cross Blood Drive

On Thursday, May 28, the Newport Beach Police Department hosted an American Red Cross Blood Drive. The event included blood donations from employees as well as the public. We are grateful for the commitment of each person to help patients of all ages: accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients and those battling cancer. Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. 

You’re Invited to “Touch a Truck” at May 14 Event

Please join us for a “Touch a Truck” event on Saturday, May 14 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Balboa Pier parking lot in celebration of National Public Works Week.

It will be a hands-on opportunity to get up close to heavy trucks and equipment – and learn how they are used to keep Newport Beach maintained.

Movie Night at Marina Park: Luca, May 13

Bring your family and friends out to Marina Park to enjoy a screening of Luca on Friday, May 13. The event will begin at 6:45 p.m. with showtime at 7:45 p.m. Fun activities, free popcorn and food will be available for purchase. Bring a chair and blanket to enjoy the evening at Marina Park.

Reduce Water Use Through These Simple Tips

In response to continued drought conditions, we are continuing to ask residents and businesses to reduce water wherever possible.

Future mandated drought water restrictions are very likely and we are awaiting further information from the state. 

In the meantime, the city suggests that you review your outdoor water use for landscaping.

–Do you see water running down the gutter after your sprinklers go on?

–Are your sprinklers over-spraying onto your driveway and sidewalk?

–Do you hear a “squish” sound when you walk on your grass after watering?

–Have you talked to your gardener about reducing your water use?

–Did you know if you reduce your outdoor watering time by one minute on a five-minute watering cycle, you’ll use 20% less water?

For water saving programs and rebates visit www.ocwatersmart.com. If you would like a free inspection or review from our Utilities Department staff regarding your water use, feel free to contact us at 949.644.3011.

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team is now operating in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to mental and behavioral health crises. The mobile unit is staffed with mental health specialists and EMTs, and works closely with the city’s police and fire departments.

This week the Be Well team: 

–Transported a man experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach to a psychiatric facility. He is now housed through a conservatorship.

–Transported a man experiencing homelessness to the hospital for treatment. He is now housed through a recuperative care program.

–Provided First Aid to one person experiencing homelessness.

–Conducted 19 outreach interactions with residents and people experiencing homelessness.

Homelessness Update

The City of Newport Beach provides a comprehensive response to address homelessness through a coordinated effort by city staff, contractors, partner agencies and nonprofit groups.

This week the city’s homeless outreach and response teams: 

–Secured permanent housing for two women who experienced homelessness in Newport Beach. One had been homeless for seven years; the other for five years.

–Referred two unsheltered people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter for temporary housing and services. As of this week, 17 people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the facility.

–Provided support services for two newly housed clients.

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

Serve Your Community! Apply Now for Vacant Seats on Boards, Commissions

The City of Newport Beach is currently accepting applications to fill the following upcoming vacancies (all terms are for four years, expiring June 30, 2026):

–Board of Library Trustees (one seat)

–Building and Fire Board of Appeals (two seats)

–City Arts Commission (one seat)

–Civil Service Board (one seat)

–Harbor Commission (three seats)

–Parks, Beaches & Recreation Commission (two seats)

–Planning Commission (one seat)

All seats will become vacant when the existing terms expire on June 30, 2022.

All applicants must be qualified electors of the city, none of whom shall hold any paid office or employment in city government (Section 702 of the City Charter).

The deadline for filing applications is 12 p.m. on Wednesday, May 11, 2022. The application and additional information about the Boards and Commissions can be found at www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy or by calling 949.644.3005. The application and information about the Boards and Commissions can also be accessed through the city’s website at www.newportbeachca.gov/bcc.

For more information, contact the City Clerk’s Office at 949.644.3005.

City Council Meeting for May 10, 2022

Our next City Council meeting is Tuesday, May 10. Items of interest are highlighted below. The entire agenda and reports can be viewed here

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

–Residential refuse program update. Staff from the Public Works Department will present an update on changes to the city’s residential waste and recycling program implemented during the past several months to bring Newport Beach in compliance with new state laws mandating the recycling of organic waste. This agenda item was continued from the April 26 City Council meeting. 

–Short-term lodging permit transfers. City staff will discuss how short-term lodging permits may be transferred under the city’s municipal code when a home changes owners, the number of permit transfers that occur and how Newport Beach’s practices compare to neighboring cities. 

The regular session begins at 6 p.m.

See the full agenda

This Week’s Events

Tuesday, May 10

City Council Meeting

City Council Chambers

100 Civic Center Drive – 4 p.m.

Wednesday, May 11
Harbor Commission Meetings

City Council Chambers

100 Civic Center Drive – 5 p.m.

Thursday, May 12
Zoning Administrator Meeting

Zoom – 10 a.m.
Finance Committee Meeting
Civic Center Community Room

100 Civic Center Drive – 3 p.m.

City Arts Commission Meeting

Central Library

1000 Avocado Ave. – 5 p.m.

Planning Commission Meeting

City Council Chambers

100 Civic Center Drive – 6:30 p.m.

See the full schedule

Editor’s Note: City Manager’s Updates was received Friday, May 6 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Another on-time delivery

Another on time delivery.png SNN 5.10

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Photo by Kevin Pellon (Instagram @socalsnapz)

The Ferry arrives at Balboa


Pathway to paradise

Pathway to paradise.jpg SNN 5.10

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Photo by Stacia Stabler

A picturesque day at Crystal Cove State Park


School Notes

Preschool enrollment is open at NMUSD

The Newport-Mesa Unified School District is now enrolling preschool, 3- and 4-year-old children into the 2022-2023 programs.

The programs are designed to promote early literacy, math and hands-on play-based learning, along with structured and independent play activities to promote social, emotional, physical and cognitive development activities.

The tuition preschool programs are offered at four locations within the District: Davis Magnet, Harbor View, Newport Elementary and Newport Coast. The programs vary from five days a week (M-F), to three days a week (M, W, F) to two days a week (T, Th).

Those interested should contact Yazmin Diaz at 949.515.6622, or go to www.nmusd.us/earlylearning.

Also offered is a free state preschool at four schools: College Park, Killybrooke, Paularino and Pomona. The program choices are part day and full day for fully potty trained 3- or 4-year-olds.

The “free” portion of the program is based on income and need.

For information on these programs, contact the preschool office at 949.515.6716 or 714.424.8978.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Measure B, the much-discussed issue as to whether or not the residents of Newport Beach directly elect their mayor

TOM MARCHToday’s Fair Game column space has been offered up to each side of Newport Beach’s much-debated Measure B issue listed on the upcoming June 2022 Primary Ballot. With vote-by-mail ballots being mailed yesterday by the Orange County Registrar of Voters and potentially beginning to arrive in mailboxes as early as today, the goal is let each side offer their final thoughts on the issue.

Each side was asked to submit up to 750 words explaining their voice on the Measure. The Yes on B side utilized 727 words, while the No on B side utilized 715 words. Both sides were also offered an accompanying photo of the author, which the No on B side agreeing to forego a photo in exchange for multiple signatories.

The hope is that readers will educate themselves in order to make a fully vetted decision and, most importantly, utilize their right to cast a vote.

Why to vote Yes on B

When ballots hit mailboxes this week, the last question will be most personal to you. Fortunately, the question is simple and straightforward.

Shall “the Newport Beach City Charter be amended to provide for the direct election of the Mayor?”

Directly elected by you, the voters. This ensures that not only do you have a direct say in who leads your city, but it also means that the Mayor will be directly accountable to you.

A candidate for Mayor should have to talk to us, the voters, about their priorities for our city. And we should get to vote for the candidate of our choosing.

You currently don’t have this choice. Instead, councilmembers gather in a room once a year and pick from amongst themselves who will be Mayor. Even though Newport Beach has over 60,000 voters, the Mayor is selected by only seven people.

Fair Game Will O'Neill 5.10

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach Councilmember Will O’Neill

The power right now is with the city council. If you vote yes, the power to elect your Mayor would shift to you. Just like the ballot question itself, your vote is that simple.

Interestingly, there is opposition to this direct democracy from a Political Action Committee that has changed its name a couple of times. The PAC started out as “No Elected Mayor,” which is exactly what the group advocates. Quite literally, they don’t want you to elect your Mayor.

Once they hired a political consultant and paid him thousands of dollars, they changed their PAC’s name to “Stop The Power Grab.” Perhaps you have seen their signs littering our public sidewalks and medians. 

A number of people have asked repeatedly: “What power grab?” Which is of course fair. What power grab indeed? Right now, the power rests with the City Council. When Measure B passes, the power will be with the voters. That’s the power grab that they want to stop.

That same group sent out its first mail piece a couple of weeks ago, which has been thoroughly debunked by this point. During a recent debate, in fact, the advocate against your voting for your Mayor agreed that statements on the mailer were not technically true. He then said: “I’m sorry. It was a postcard. You only have a certain amount of space.” 

That is not an excuse for inaccuracies. Inaccuracies such as claiming that Measure B would “require a huge budget increase for the mayor that would cost Newport Beach taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars every year.” To the contrary, there is no such requirement at all of any such expenditure in Measure B.

Inaccuracies such as claiming that Measure B would create an “elected king.” Or that the Mayor would have “total control of our city government.” These claims are not just false, but provably false. 

In his impartial analysis published on our City’s website, the Newport Beach City Attorney stated clearly that the Mayor would simply be “a voting member of the Council” and that “at any Council meeting, three Councilmembers would have the discretion to add an item to a future agenda.”

This is not a “strong Mayor” system, nor does it diminish the voice or role of city councilmembers. It does, though, force the Mayor to be directly accountable to you because you are the one electing the Mayor.

Last week, the No Elected Mayor PAC set its sights on debasing a bipartisan issue by appealing to rank partisanship by sending out mail claiming that Measure B is “a Republican power grab” that would “diminish democratic representation.” Not only is such a statement false, but we should reject the No Elected Mayor opposition’s effort to devolve a unifying issue into blue-state mudslinging. 

Instead, let’s come back to the question that voters will be answering on their ballots. Shall “the Newport Beach City Charter be amended to provide for the direct election of the Mayor?”

After everything that we have seen over the past few years, should we really maintain and promote a system where you have less direct say? Of course not. 

A candidate for Mayor should be talking to all of us about their priorities, stand for a city-wide vote, and be accountable to all of us. 

We the voters should choose our Mayor. Vote Yes on B.

For more information, please visit www.ElectOurMayor.com.

Hon. Will O’Neill currently serves on the Newport Beach City Council and served as Mayor in 2020.

Why to vote No on B

Changing our City Charter to allow for an elected mayor is the single worst proposal for Newport Beach since our very inception in 1906. The elected mayor proposal is NOT simple and it is not simply electing our mayor. It contains many other provisions that will give this elected mayor more power over the city than any other mayor in Orange County. It is opposed by Republicans (The Lincoln Club) and Democrats (NBWDC) and by virtually all former mayors, city councilmembers and city managers. 

Why has this mayor change to city government suddenly been proposed? 

There is no problem with our city government that this change will solve. Proponents claim the city misses out on opportunities such as government grants under the current system of rotating the mayor position yearly, yet in our collective experience as mayors, none of us found this to be the case. We advocated very effectively for our city at all levels of government. Newport Beach is one of the best managed, most financially stable cities in California. That is why our property values steadily rise. Residential and commercial interests invest in stability, not risk. This proposal is high risk.

The only reason that the proponents want this change is to gain power over city hall and Newport Beach. 

This will bring more politics and politicians to our city. Newport Beach will become a good target for any office-seeking individual with money and name recognition. This is NOT democracy. This is an autocratic takeover of Newport Beach. We become the city that money can buy. If this seems an overstatement, why does so much of the funding in support of Measure B come from outside the city?

That is why we, the former mayors of Newport Beach, strongly oppose Measure B. 

We support the current system where residents elect seven councilmembers and in turn, they publicly and by majority vote, select one of their number to serve as mayor for a one-year term during the last council meeting of the year. We know this system works very well. 

WHY VOTE NO ON MEASURE B?

1. Power is shared among the Councilmembers. The mayor is “first among equals.” Newport’s City Charter, which is our Constitution, ensures that we work together collegially. No one person dominates. No outside interests control the Council by aligning with a single all-powerful mayor.

2. We have term limits. Our current system allows any one individual to serve up to two four-year terms. Measure B doubles that and allows one person to remain on Council for up to sixteen years (two four-year terms as a Councilmember and two four-year terms as Mayor).

3. Each Council district has one vote. By adopting a system where we have an elected mayor, the Council district where the mayor resides would have two votes, thus diluting the other districts’ decision-making authority and creating a power imbalance with a ripple effect across the city. This proposal also eliminates one council district, triggering an expensive redistricting process.

4. The elected mayor would be far too powerful, more so than any mayor of Newport Beach in our nearly 70-year City Council history and more so than any elected mayor in Orange County. The elected mayor would have near complete control over the city’s agenda – with singular decision-making power over every matter that needs Council approval. With a few friendly allies on the Council, the elected mayor would dictate all city policies, hiring decisions and budgetary actions. If the mayor doesn’t want debate on an agenda item, it disappears, never to see the light of day. There would be no checks and balances. History tells us what happens when one politician has complete authority. 

Please join us and oppose this ill-advised and damaging change to our City.  Vote NO on Measure B. Go to NoPowerGrab.com to learn more about the proposal and how you can help.

Thank you,

Evelyn Hart, mayor, 1982-1984

Clarence ‘Bus’ Turner, mayor, 1992-1994

Tom Edwards, mayor, 1997-1998

Gary Adams, mayor, 2000-2001

John Heffernan, mayor, 2005

Don Webb, mayor, 2005-2006

Steve Rosansky, mayor, 2006-2007

Mike Henn, mayor, 2010-2011

Nancy Gardner, mayor, 2011-2012

Diane Dixon, mayor, 2015-2016, 2018-2019

Brad Avery, mayor, 2020-2021

Homer Bludau, City Manager, 1999-2009


Newport Beach – A Look Back

Photo series courtesy of Balboa Island Museum Newport Beach

Newport Beach A Look Back A sailboat contest 1920s

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A sailboat contest at the Balboa Island Ferry docks, circa 1920s

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..


Gray day at the pier

Gray day at the pier.jpg SNN 5.6

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

Water swirls across the shallows on an overcast gray morning


Crystal Cove clear

Crystal Cove clear.jpg SNN 5.6

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Photo by Stacia Stabler

Crystal Cove State Park shining on a sunny spring day


Collaborative workshop offers new perspectives on California’s offshore oil predicament

On April 21, 2022, Orange County Coastkeeper hosted “Retiring Offshore Rigs: A Decommissioning Workshop to Clear the Horizon.” This hybrid event focused on clarifying the platform decommissioning process, identifying barriers, and creating actionable next steps to accelerate and improve the retirement of California’s offshore rigs. The event was held at the Balboa Pavilion in Newport Beach with a free livestream component as well.

 In total, 20 different speakers offered their expertise and opinions on offshore oil in California. The panelists included marine biology professors, elected officials, decommissioning consultants, oversight agency representatives, oil industry executives, environmental advocates and more.

Collaborative workshop panel

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Courtesy of OC Coastkeeper

OC Coastkeeper’s Dyana Peña hosts a panel on how the public can better influence offshore oil decommissioning

In the wake of the 2021 Huntington Beach oil spill and amidst the Platform Holly decommissioning conundrum in Santa Barbara, there has never been a more apparent need to reassess platform decommissioning. Offshore oil operations generate a minuscule amount of the total oil produced in California yet pose an enormous threat to our coastal ecosystem and economy. Their equipment is aging and, in some cases, neglected, which will undoubtedly result in an increase in spills in the coming years.

What’s next?

With consideration of all the event panels, public input and staff expertise, Orange County Coastkeeper has highlighted five next steps to bring about the end of offshore oil in California responsibly.

1. Decommissioning options in both state and federal waters must be streamlined and better communicated to both the public and platform leaseholders.

2. While opinions on platform removal and reefing differ, Californians must unify in our call to end offshore oil production.

3. New or modified legislation is required at the state and federal levels.

4. Approaches to decommissioning must be collaborative and address perspectives from as many stakeholders as possible and their perspectives must be respected.

5. Statewide leadership is required to continue the decommissioning conversation.

The full recording of the entire event, broken down by segment, is available on Coastkeeper’s website at www.coastkeeper.org.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

SPON and Eagle Four Partners/Lyon Living agree to establish a private non-profit housing trust fund

TOM MARCHTuesday, I was invited to attend one of those meetings that you could almost never imagine taking place. This one was with a few of the leading proponents and officers of SPON (Jean Watt, Charles Klobe and Nancy Scarbrough) sitting across the table from “developers” from Eagle Four Partners and Lyon Living (Kory Kramer and Peter Zak).

And, perhaps even more surprising was, that when I arrived, everyone was happy and had a smile on their face. I quickly found out why.

The two groups were jointly announcing an agreement that will provide for a private non-profit housing trust fund that should dramatically impact the future of Newport Beach in an extremely positive way. Said agreement will potentially protect the way the city meets the state-required 4,845 dwelling units for affordable housing. 

The state, as most residents probably know, is requiring Newport Beach to build 4,845 units through the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) numbers. That presents a difficult task.

There are several ways to make this happen. One is to start splitting up existing residential lots as defined in SB 9 and SB 10 and potentially overcrowd the neighborhoods. Another is to build enough market-priced new homes (probably somewhere between 11,000-25,000) to allot for the required number of affordable housing units.

Imagine for a second, where would 11,000-25,000 new homes in Newport Beach go?

Both of these ideas listed above also do not take into account the impacts on neighborhood parking, additional traffic on streets, additional calls requiring police and fire and the impacts on our school classroom sizes.

The great news is that the creation of this private non-profit housing trust fund will allow us to focus on affordable housing only, and not building so many that we could meet the 4,845 number. 

So, what’s the agreement? And, has something like this ever happened before?

The answer to the second part is “yes,” an agreement of this magnitude between SPON and developers dates all the way back to 1987 when a “tradeoff” agreement was made allowing the expansion of the Big Newporter theater in exchange for the land donated where the Muth Interpretive Center would be developed and still stands today.

That one was a definite win-win! And my sense is that this new agreement will also be a win-win.

First, a little background.

SPON, of course, stands for Still Protecting Our Newport. SPON is “dedicated to preserving the existing charm and beauty of our City.” Many opponents would argue that that translates to mean “no growth.” Representatives from SPON, on the other hand, would argue that it means “responsible growth.”

Jumping to the other side of the table, Eagle Four Partners owns the Balboa Bay Resort, Newport Beach Country Club, they recently purchased the Fashion Island Hotel, and, of course, they also own the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa

A point of clarification, the Marriott is actually a 50/50 partnership between Eagle Four and Lyon Living, which they’re jointly remodeling and rebranding as “VEA Newport Beach.” It’s going to be spectacular. And, it’s really the primary reason behind the joint meeting with SPON.

Interestingly enough, one of the major parts of the remodel is downsizing the hotel, or as Kramer would say, “rightsizing the hotel” from 532 rooms down to 400 rooms.

The next part includes the building of a 22-story Ritz-Carlton residential tower just behind the existing Marriott parking lot, where they presently have  multi-story buildings occupying those previously discussed 132 rooms that would be removed. 

That property is fortunately already designated in the General Plan for such use, so no General Plan amendment is required. 

What it means is at the end of the day, we’ll have a completely remodeled, rebranded hotel named VEA Newport Beach, with 400 rooms and all the terrific amenities.

Then, we’ll also have the Ritz-Carlton residential tower, next door, that will offer residents all the amenities of private living intermingled with those of hotel living.

One very important note on this is that residents will not be able to rent out these places to short-term rentals.

It’s also worthy of note that the height/sight lines would be in accordance with the gradual decline in place for the area from the existing 500 block high point.

Fair Game SNN 4 people

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Photo by Tom Johnson

(Back Row L-R) Charles Klobe, Kory Kramer, Peter Zak with Jean Watt (center front)

So, the agreement is that SPON supports this project. In exchange, Eagle Four and Lyon Living will establish with them this private non-profit housing trust fund.

This trust fund does several things. First of all, it will accept private donations that will come from the usual philanthropists, from businesses that want affordable housing within the city for their employees and, perhaps, even parents that hope their grown children might be able to move back home someday. Federal and state programs could also donate into the fund.

The trust fund would take funds and commit them 100% to building quality, community affordable housing. No longer would a developer have to build X number of market-priced homes in order to allocate just a few to affordable housing to make ends meet.

That means we could potentially return to a focus of 4,845 dwellings versus the thousands and thousands the state would force us into with no plan.

And, just so we’re all on the same page, before you say, oh no, affordable housing means “poor people” or “rundown areas,” think again.

To qualify for affordable housing, a two-person family making $98,900 would be considered low income and still only qualify for a $427,800 home. So low income doesn’t necessarily mean poor, poor…just someone currently making a lot less than most people in Newport Beach.

Eagle Four Partners, Lyon Living and SPON should be commended for taking one of the biggest issues facing Newport Beach and joining together to find a “win-win” solution for everyone.

One other face and voice that was intimately involved with all discussions was City Councilmember Joy Brenner. Said Kramer, “Joy was the bridgebuilder, doing absolutely what a council person should be doing.”

Mark your calendar…we might not see this again for another 35 years. But in reality, that’s what tells you it’s the right thing to do.

• • •

The other big news/rumor in town is that Lee Lowrey has removed himself from plans to oppose Robyn Grant for the District 4 City Council seat. When I said news/rumor, I should clarify that we attempted to contact Lee, but to no avail, that and the fact that everyone’s talking about it all around town.

The departure comes just after endorsements from police, fire and lifeguard came out supporting Grant.

• • •

Christmas is coming early to our Newport Beach Fire Department. Beginning next week, new fire engines will be going into service at Newport Fire Station 2 (Lido) and Station 3 (Fashion Island).

Whatever it takes to keep our community safe!

• • •

First of all, Happy Mother’s Day to all of those fortunate enough to belong to this wonderful club. 

For me, personally, Mother’s Day 2022 is somewhat bittersweet. On one hand I’m extremely happy that next month my mom will reach the age of 92. Unfortunately, due to the constraints of Alzheimer’s or dementia, whatever someone wants to call it, my mother is deep within its throes.

This year she is in her own little world, lost from the rest of us. Still, she’s comfortable and wakes up every day with a smile on her face. Unfortunately, no more enjoying pictures of grandchildren, talking with her kids on the telephone and truly understanding who’s there, going to church, or just happily engaging with those around her.

Although for me it’s sad, I use this as a reminder to so many of you to make certain you enjoy those times with your mother. When the end comes, it’s punishing to all involved.

• • •

Because Mother’s Day is so special, check out our Winner, Runner-Up and all the Nominees in our WORLD’S BEST MOTHER Contest today. Our Winner was Ann Baker, nominated by her daughter Avery Jolliffe. Ann is going to enjoy a luxurious spa day courtesy of Spa Gregorie’s where pampering is taken to the next level, Flowers and Chocolates, courtesy of John Stanaland and a $100 dining gift card, courtesy of OLEA/Sapphire Restaurant. Our Runner-Up, Kristen Tomlinson, nominated by her mother Carol Tomlinson, will receive a $100 gift card to Spa Gregorie’s. You will be able to view all the nominees and find out why they are all indeed, very special Moms. A huge thank you to all our contest sponsors and to those who submitted nominations.

• • •

As I’ve mentioned, Sunday, May 8 is Mother’s Day. With that comes the release of the first virtual garden in the 26th Annual Newport Beach Garden Tour, hosted by the Sherman Library & Gardens’ Volunteer Association.

As part of the Tour, three gardens will be released throughout the summer. This first one is a tour of La Casa Pacifica, also know at President Richard Nixon’s Western White House

It should be fabulous.

Permission and special access to this historical home was granted to Sherman Library & Gardens by the homeowners.

The Annual Garden Tour culminates with a Summer Garden Party on Saturday, August 27 at Sherman Gardens.

Tickets start at only $25 and can make a great Mother’s Day gift for you late shoppers. Simply go to www.thesherman.org.

Proceeds support children’s education programs.

• • •

Speaking of gardens, Ann Apeles Brunning’s Flying Flowers exhibit will open Monday, May 9 in the Art Gallery of the Central Library. The exhibit, a beautiful collection of photographs of butterflies in the garden, will be on display through July 1.

• • •

Just an FYI, the Airport Land Use Commission has canceled their May 19 meeting and will next meet on June 16 at 4 p.m.


Inaugural fire department annual report covers COVID response, 2020-21 statistics, programs

By SARA HALL

An inaugural annual report covering the Newport Beach Fire Department (NBFD) and its activities in 2020-2021 was recently published, revealing a comprehensive look at the department, challenges NBFD faced during the pandemic, and how they adapted to the ever-changing times.

Posted on the city website on April 27, the 76-page report covers a brief history and description of NBFD, information about the various departments, budget details, statistics, community programs, training, response to COVID-19, notable incidents during 2020 and 2021, personnel achievements, staffing changes, and messages from the chief, both reflecting back on the past two years and looking ahead.

The comprehensive report also provides information on grants and revenue sources, mutual aid reimbursement, accomplishments and awards, completed training and educational courses, COVID response coordination and management, staffing structures, medical transport reporting, student and community programs, wildland inspections, response to protests, beach closures, rescue events, and the oil spill.

During the last two years, NBFD responses and overall demand for services were so unlike any other period of time in the history of the fire service, said Fire Chief Jeff Boyles in an email to Stu News Newport on Wednesday (May 4).

“I found myself trying to capture all of the events, services and emergencies that we responded to in 2020 to members of the community and council,” Boyles said. “As 2021 continued with the pandemic, it occurred to me that we needed to document and journalize this unique period of time.” 

Inaugural fire department Jeff Boyles

Courtesy of NBFD

Newport Beach Fire Chief Jeff Boyles

They decided to capture the information in an annual report format, which has become more commonplace within many public safety agencies, he added. 

Work on the report began in the summer of 2021 with a small group of administrative staff writing about the various divisions and recalling significant events from 2020 and 2021. 

“We quickly realized that creating a document from scratch was a bit more labor intensive than the resources we had available in addition to our daily duties and responsibilities,” Boyles noted. 

The team looked internally to the myriad talents within the city’s seasonal lifeguard staff (which includes educators, coaches, students, etc.) and found seasonal lifeguard Kimmy Morrison, a certified substitute teacher for the Newport-Mesa Unified School District and is currently pursuing her nursing degree. Morrison joined the staff on a part-time basis and spearheaded the design and overall development of the document. 

“Overall, we had 17 revisions to the document and worked on it collectively for about eight months,” Boyles said. 

During the process, it was surprising to fully see that while lifeguards, fire operations, fire prevention, administration, EMS, training, CERT are all one team and operate under NBFD’s umbrella, they often worked independently without even realizing it.

“Quite honestly, with the pandemic, our various divisions were operating at such a rapid pace with the changing environment and often independently of each other. Creating the document and having each division recount their experiences helped pull us together as one unified team,” Boyles said. “This report gave us an opportunity to learn about each other’s various achievements, skills and areas for improvement.”

Inaugural fire department NorCal fire

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Courtesy of NBFD

A fire raging in Northern California in 2020

Some notable information in the report points out that local firefighters responded to more wildfires around the state of California in 2020 and 2021 than any other years in the history of the NBFD. 

“The 2020 fire season started with back-to-back deployments as the NBFD responded to numerous requests for mutual aid,” the report reads. “Five of the six biggest fires in California’s history burned in 2020 and Newport Beach rendered mutual aid to each one.”

In 2020 and 2021, NBFD assisted with six-major conflagrations in the state which burned more than 2.25 million acres and destroyed approximately 3,304 structures. These numbers exclude incidents when single-resource personnel were deployed to these and other fires.

NBFD deployed 17 firefighters to Northern California in areas including Santa Cruz, Napa and Vacaville. 

“Upon returning all personnel home, we re-deployed an engine to San Bernardino County and San Diego County,” the report reads. 

In late 2020, the Santa Ana winds sparked the Silverado Fire which burned more than 13,000 acres and the Blue Ridge Fire in Yorba Linda burned over 14,000 acres.

NBFD did all of this while also responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, which the report details and breaks down each division’s actions.

“Our collective response to the COVID pandemic was nothing short of awe inspiring,” Boyles said. 

The COVID-19 pandemic created new obstacles that required innovation and teamwork throughout the entire department, the report reads. 

Lifeguards and firefighters were trained in administering vaccines and responsible for hosting vaccine clinics, PODs (point of dispensing) and testing sites. 

“These efforts were unheard of from fire service professionals in years past,” Boyles noted.

On March 15, 2020, the city opened its Emergency Operations Center with Boyles serving as the incident commander and personnel from each city department filling critical roles in the EOC. Assistant Chief of Lifeguard Operations Mike Halphide served as the EOC’s planning chief and personally prepared 28 daily incident action plans.

In mid-2020, Thompson was the first EMS manager in the county to apply for state licensure with the state and federal government agencies for NBFD to serve as its own laboratory. With the laboratory license secured, NBFD procured free COVID-19 testing supplies from the county and conducted testing for city employees.

On-duty fire and lifeguard personnel tested 367 employees at 28 clinic days between November 2020 and December 2021. If this testing had been referred to an outside medical clinic, it is estimated that the city would have paid more than $91,750 for test processing alone, according to the report. The additional cost of clinic staff would have increased this cost significantly.

When Orange County received the first shipments of vaccines in December 2020, they called upon the fire agencies to handle the distribution. 

“They knew we had the ability to manage large scale events,” Boyles explained. 

Every fire agency in Orange County worked tirelessly on Christmas Eve and Christmas day 2020 to formulate a plan and began distributing the vaccines on Dec. 26, 2020, he recalled. 

“After months of vaccine distribution, the overall transmission rates, hospitalizations and deaths declined tremendously,” Boyles said. “Regardless of one’s position on vaccines, the statistics overwhelmingly show we saved lives and put our local economy back into motion. We continue to adjust and adapt to the ever-changing landscape of environmental disasters and human behaviors.”

Inaugural fire department COVID vaccine

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Courtesy of NBFD

NBFD personnel administers the COVID vaccine to a resident

Each spike of the pandemic brought additional challenges regarding the care and transport of COVID-19 patients. NBFD crews also helped with staffing and management of PODS in Orange County. 

“As COVID-19 dominated the headlines, crews adapted their tactics on medical aids to assure the safety of all involved,” Assistant Chief of Fire Operations Justin Carr wrote in the report. 

As the PODs were winding down, NBFD started to host its own vaccination clinics in April 2021. Fire department personnel safely vaccinated 1,937 community members during 28 clinics at Newport Beach facilities through December 2021. 

“NBFD is the only fire department in Orange County, and one of a handful in the state, continuing to hold clinics to vaccinate the public long past the closure of super PODs,” the report reads.

Among the challenges with COVID-19, they also dealt with multiple beach and water closures and adapted to the enforcement of a state mandated “active use only” beach environment, Halphide explained.

“Additionally, with the warmer weather and reduced recreational opportunities due to COVID-19, beach crowds and lifeguard activity increased in 2020 compared to 2019, Halphide wrote in the report. 

The estimated beach population was approximately 7.75 million in 2019 compared to just over 8 million in 2020. Last year the number dropped to about 6.5 million. 

“While summer is always a dynamic time for lifeguard operations, summer 2020 presented unique challenges in keeping beachgoers safe while providing the highest quality customer service,” Halphide said. “In the summer of 2021, there were fewer COVID-19 beach restrictions and many entertainment facilities were still closed.” 

Lifeguards prepared for a busy summer season by increasing staffing levels to meet the demand of beachgoers and visitors enjoying the city’s shoreline and beachfront.

During the pandemic, the administration division supported NBFD’s first responders by ensuring purchases for personal protective equipment (PPE) were being met and that they would continue to receive a paycheck. There were also efforts underway for immediate budget reductions and planning for the next fiscal year’s reduced budget.

These reductions limited some planned purchases, repairs and upgrades; however, there have been many large ticket items approved by the City Council over the last two years:

–Two Pierce type I fire engines with an expected delivery in spring;

–One Pierce type III wildland fire engine with an expected delivery in spring;

–Three Leader paramedic vans with an expected delivery later this year;

–One Pierce ladder truck with an expected delivery in winter 2023;

–Construction of a new fire station #2 located on 28th Street between Balboa and Newport boulevards, which is scheduled for completion in spring this year; and

–Funding committed for the Junior Lifeguard building that is expected to break ground in fall.

Life safety equipment obtained includes 90 self-contained breathing apparatus with additional face pieces, voice amplifiers and adapters for inter-agency compatibility, upgraded hose nozzles for more effective firefighting and equipment for the new type III wildland engine, the first in the department’s fleet, to meet the needs of wildland firefighting.

Inaugural fire department medical aid

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Courtesy of NBFD

NBFD paramedics render medical aid to a patient in a vehicle 

Nearly 80% of NBFD’s emergency responses include a medical aid component. The division is responsible for the quality assurance of the care delivered to every patient and measuring key EMS clinical performance indicators and skills, explained EMS Division Chief Kristin Thompson.

“The NBFD continually meets and exceeds the state and national benchmarks, even during the challenging times of a pandemic,” Thompson wrote in the report. 

An in-depth analysis is conducted on all patients who suffer a cardiac arrest. The analysis includes a review of the appropriate care and interventions performed and personnel is provided educational feedback and the patients’ outcome. 

“We submit key data points on all our cardiac arrests, approximately 140 a year, to the Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival (CARES),” Thompson explained. “Through our partnership with Hoag Hospital, patient outcome data is also provided to CARES. This measures how patients are cared for in the field and their disposition from the hospital.”

NBFD’s response to patients in cardiac arrest are benchmarked against state and national standards. In 2020 and 2021, NBFD treated 265 sudden cardiac arrest patients. 

“We are very proud of the relationship we have built with Hoag Hospital and the tremendous cardiac save rates our paramedics have posted in concert with the world-class treatment given at Hoag,” Boyles said.

A small percentage of people actually utilize NBFD services via 911, Boyles pointed out. When it does happen, it can be a traffic accident, a medical emergency or a fire.

“When those people do need us, it tends to be a very challenging and/or traumatic day in their life,” Boyles noted. “However, we want everyone to know that we stand ready as a resource for many other services than just a 911 emergency response model. Emergencies will always occur with humans and the environment, so we need to be staffed, trained and prepared, but there are many facets to prevention and educative measures we can take to mitigate some hazards.”

Among the accomplishments for the EMS division during the past two years, the team conducted the first paramedic-level EMS academy in NBFD history in 2020 and a second one in 2021, to train and evaluate newly hired paramedics.

Fire Marshal Kevin Bass oversees the fire prevention division, which increased its focus on the Wildland Urban Interface Areas within the city during 2020 and 2021.

Staff conducted annual vegetation inspections in the Buck Gully and Morning Canyon areas, previously these inspections were performed on alternating years, Bass explained in the report. 

“In addition to inspectors on the ground, the city’s information technology division supported fire prevention’s efforts with the use of drone video and photography to inspect areas that are difficult to access,” Bass said. 

The division also launched its Ready, Set, Go! program, rewrote a new fire code and an ordinance for the false alarm program for City Council’s adoption and targeted Buck Gully and other areas for wildland fuel reductions. 

In the fire administration division, staffed by civilian personnel tasked with implementing citywide policies and procedures, dealt with some staffing turnover over the past two years due to promotions and external opportunities.

Boyles took the opportunity to realign the civilian administrative personnel from being assigned to different division managers to reporting directly to the administrative manager, Mary Locey. Additionally, the division had a full-time vacancy for roughly two years, from October 2019 through August 2021, due to budgetary restrictions. 

“Now that every position is filled, and the personnel are working under one manager, the division has become streamlined toward the same department-wide goals,” Locey wrote in the report. 

Inaugural fire department junior guards

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Courtesy of NBJG

Kids and instructors kick off the 2021 NB Junior Guards summer program 

The report also goes into detail about the various community programs managed under NBFD and how each responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

When Boyles was promoted to fire chief in 2019, one of his key goals was to educate the community on the services NBFD provides. Programs like the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and the Junior Lifeguard program are extremely popular within the community, but many people may not realize that they are an extension of the fire department. 

“Our mission is to protect life and property, but that comes through many lenses such as community outreach (Fire Explorers, Public Safety Day, Fire Safety Day, Fire Medic Program) – public education (Surfer Awareness Lifesaving Techniques otherwise known as SALT, Project Wipeout, CERT, CPR training in the high schools) and even enforcement at times (wildfire/vegetation mitigation, business inspections for life safety, etc.) in addition to emergency responses,” Boyles explained. 

Planning was underway for the Newport Beach Junior Lifeguard Program enrollment to be a record year after nearly 1,500 youth passed the March 2020 swim test. 

“The week after the final swim test, the statewide stay-at-home order was issued and the future of the 2020 NBJG Program was in question,” the report reads. “After three months in limbo, contingency planning and protocol adaptation, it was determined the program could run safely with major modifications.”

Newport Beach was the first junior guard program in Orange County to offer the 2020 summer program. About 1,200 kids participated in a scaled-down program.

“The 2020 program was a huge success and there were no COVID-19-related health impacts,” the report reads. “Following the program, numerous NBJG families expressed appreciation to the lifeguards, the department and City leadership for holding the program under the challenging circumstances.”

Staff adapted again in summer 2021 and more kids signed up than ever before with a record 1,645 participants.

“This resulted in additional adjustments for increased instructors to ensure the program ran safely and efficiently,” the report reads.

As COVID-19 restrictions reduced, the program returned to its longstanding locations and adjusted protocols, allowing for the return of several events.

Due to the limitations of public gatherings, the 2020 CERT program was reimagined and provided through a virtual platform for participants to complete the required coursework and training. In May of 2021, the hands-on drill was conducted, and the participants became official members of the NBFD CERT volunteer program.

The NBFD report also mentions the fire explorer, fire medic and Ready, Set, Go! (newly adopted in 2020) programs. 

As the inaugural report, it went into details about the various programs and division responsibilities, but for future reports, Boyles plans on condensing the information.

“Now that we have a format and robust overview of our organization documented in the inaugural report, we will have a much more condensed report in years to come,” Boyles said. “I envision future reports to focus more on notable events, promotions, retirements and statistics.”

In his closing message for the report, Boyles wrote that while NBFD faced a variety of challenges and uncertainties, the department stepped up time and time again. 

“For the fire department, 2022 will be another active year filled with many long-awaited programs, delivery of new apparatus, and finalizing and implementing the updated Standards of Coverage and Strategic Plan,” Boyles wrote. 

~~~~~~~~

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


Take Five: Meet Jack Johnston, Sage Hill junior contributing to the access of justice in OC

By AMY SENK

I flipped through the April issue of Orange County Lawyer Magazine, and an article inside caught my eye: “Resources For Self-Represented Litigants In Probate Court,” co-authored by my neighbors Judge Gerald G. Johnston and his son, Jack Johnston. The article describes how our aging population has resulted in a rise in cases of elder abuse, estates disputes and conservatorship, and despite many pro bono resources, there are often people representing themselves in complicated cases. Jack Johnston, 17, a junior at Sage Hill School, saw this firsthand and decided to do something about it with a series of “how-to” videos available online through the court website. I caught up with him to learn more.

Take Five Meet Jack Johnston

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Courtesy of the Johnston family

Jack Johnston

Q: When did you become interested in law? 

A: I became interested in the law growing up with an extended family of judges and lawyers. Often, dinner discussions would revolve around current events and legal issues. My lawyer mom and judge dad both frequently brought me to court to watch different proceedings. This is why I grew up thinking of the courts as a place where people go to seek justice. 

Q: I read that it was a visit to Probate Court before COVID that made you realize that self-representing people can be vulnerable. Can you tell me more about that specific situation? 

A: Absolutely, I was at court one day and saw a self-represented woman seeking an elder-abuse restraining order against her abusive grandson. She had not filled out a necessary form correctly. The judge was sympathetic but could not grant the order for the woman and told her to try again. I was impacted by this experience and wanted to make a difference. Later, I talked to my dad about this particular situation, and he confirmed that these orders cannot be granted unless the forms are filled out completely and correctly. I also learned that the same problem exists for other protective proceedings such as guardianships of minors and conservatorships of vulnerable people.

Q: Ultimately, you created videos for self-represented litigants in Probate Court. How did your interest and desire to help culminate in those videos and how did you go about making them?

A: After the experience I last described, I started thinking about ways to help self-represented people in probate court. I thought about what I do when trying to understand something which is to go to YouTube. I learned that almost no instruction videos for self-represented people exist online for the justice system. I approached the Orange County Superior Court judges and they agreed to allow me to create videos to be posted on the Court’s website. When I started making my first set of videos, I visited the Self-Help Center at the Orange County Superior courts and met with the staff to learn more about where self-represented litigants needed the most assistance. I also worked with a specialist at the Self-Help Center and a probate judge to put together the necessary information into a video that would help someone get through this daunting process. Then, I began to write an outline of a script that would walk people step-by-step through the successful completion of these forms. Next, I finalized the script, recorded and narrated the video. I have repeated this process for many additional videos. Videos for elder and dependent adult abuse protective orders and decedents’ estates are posted now under the probate section of Self-Help on the Court’s website. As of now, I am working on completing a set of videos regarding conservatorships and, following that, I will prepare guardianship videos.

Q: Have you had any positive feedback?

A: Yes, I have had positive feedback from court officials and lawyers. The presiding judge of the Orange County Superior Court has expressed his gratitude for my project. Orange County Lawyer Magazine recently published an article I co-authored describing the project. Many judges and lawyers have positively responded about the existence of this new resource. I formatted these videos so they can be used by litigants in any court throughout California.

Q: What are your hobbies, and what are your goals for the future?

A: I am a distance runner and compete in both cross country and track. I am an avid reader, and it is my dream to one day compete on Jeopardy. My goal is to attend law school and become a lawyer to serve the underrepresented. 

~~~~~~~~

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


In Memoriam

Patricia (Pat) Lena Poss

April 12, 1928 – April 29, 2022

In Memoriam Patricia Lena Poss

Courtesy of Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Patricia (Pat) Lena Poss

It is with great sadness, Segerstrom Center for the Arts announces the passing of dedicated Board of Directors member, Patricia (Pat) Lena Poss, who passed away on Friday, April 29, 2022. Pat was an amazing individual, with a heart of gold and kindness that extended to all she knew and who helped so many in the community. She was a champion for the charitable causes she believed in. Always willing to help and always the first to volunteer for any task. For over 31 years, she volunteered her time as a Board of Directors member for Segerstrom Center for the Arts, and in that time her philanthropic achievements helped build the Center and its arts community of Orange County to where it is today.

On April 28, 2022, Pat was unanimously appointed with the honor of Director Emeritus by the Executive Committee of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. She is only the third board member, and the first female, to receive this recognition.   

Pat’s involvement with the Center began before she joined the Board of Directors. She was a patron since 1987, a Broadway subscriber since 1988 and a Dance subscriber from 1988 to 2003. In April 1991, Pat joined the Board of Directors for Segerstrom Center for the Arts, previously known as the Orange County Performing Arts, serving on multiple board committees including the Annual Center Fund, Campaign Steering, Education, Resident Companies and Support Groups. For decades she was a part of the Candlelight Concert gala committee and served two times as Candlelight Chair. Working in fundraising became natural to her, but her true love was working with kids. Her leadership in the Education Committee created Summer at the Center, a musical theater camp for disadvantaged youth.

“Pat was a people person whose charm and lovely smile made others feel welcomed wherever she went. Generous, kind, thoughtful – she will be missed and without Pat, our Center will not be the same,” shared Judy Morr, executive vice president for Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

Pat came from humble beginnings. She was one of eight children growing up in an era still recovering from the Depression before the start of World War II. After the loss of her mother at the age of 8, she spent her childhood learning all that she could in a two-room schoolhouse while her father did his best to maintain his dairy farm located in Sewickley Heights, Pennsylvania. College was not affordable for her, but she realized that a year’s worth of business school knowledge and plain old hard work just might find her a job. And it did. She loved her life but felt there was something missing. That’s when she got on an airplane and headed to California with a single suitcase in one hand and a 4-year old in the other to start a new life.

In 1958, she married Charlie Poss and not long after found herself working along with him. She was proud of the thriving family earth-moving and construction business, C.W. Poss, Inc, she helped build and run. She was hard working, whip-smart, understood people and had a keen mind for business.

Pat’s warm smile, love and devotion to her family was known to all who knew her. She loved sharing the Center with her family, bringing them with her to events such as Candlelight Concert and the Arts & Business Leadership Awards Dinner. She will be truly missed by all in our community, and we will forever remember Pat for her philanthropic dedication and service to Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

Pat is survived by her daughter Janet and her husband Dan, her daughter Robin and her husband Patrick, her son Chuck and his wife Sharlene, 9 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.


On the Harbor: Not only a harbor columnist, but now exploring a radio future

By LEN BOSE

The harbor is opening up like a spring flower this month with yacht clubs’ opening days, twilight sailing, Balboa Angling Club’s Lily Call fishing tournament, a Harbor Summer Summit, and me taking part in the “Poorman’s Morning Rush” radio show, May 12, on KOCI 101.5.

Like always, I have the cart three lengths in front of the horse when telling you this. I have been invited to do a 10-minute harbor report on “Poorman’s Morning Rush” radio show. The spot should run sometime between 8:10-8:30 a.m., and, of course, I will be talking about the harbor and doing my best to stay on the rum line. The easiest way to listen to the show is to stream it with the information all on the KOCI web page at www.koci.com. If all goes well, I will be fishing for a weekly spot on the show.

Speaking of fishing, this last weekend was the Balboa Angling Club’s 59th Annual Lily Call Tournament. I reached out to join top local fisherman Jimmy Decker. We fished Saturday from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m., which is a long day for me in the harbor. I was running the boat and Tracy, Decker’s wife, was doing most of the fishing. 

“We fished for bass between the Coast Guard Station and the harbor entrance,” said Decker. “It was pretty good for us at the harbor mouth trolling deep water crankbaits.”

On the Harbor sailing

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of Joysailing.com

With springtime we get sailing and that’s a good thing

Saturday fishing was good with plenty of sun, along with a good swing of the tides, while Sunday was a little cooler with a little breeze going across the harbor. 

I tell you this every year, the Balboa Angling Club is the best value in town. For more information, go to their website at https://balboaanglingclub.org. And, should you have kids that have a passion for fishing, make sure you sign up for the junior summer program.

Summer Twilights have started. For you old folks, do you remember the Peanuts character Snoopy doing his happy dance? Well, that’s me this time of year. 

Jennifer, my wife, just rolls her eyes and tells me “You’re so weird!” 

But, that’s how I feel this time of year with the American Legion first across the starting line last Monday night beginning their Sundowners Race Series that goes from May 2-August 29. This event is perfect for club PHRF racers looking to mix it up a little with a relaxed atmosphere along with one of our harbor’s best after race gatherings and awards. 

Newport Harbor Yacht Club is next across the starting line with their Twilights Summer Series that began on May 5 and runs into the end of September. This event attracts most of our harbor’s best one-design sailors in Lehman 12s, Finns and Harbor 20s.

Next up is BCYC Taco Tuesdays from May 10-August 23 which brings in a large PHRF and Harbor 20 fleets. This is my favorite night of the summer that features the best after racing party in our harbor. For more than a decade Ronda Tolar and her team go to great lengths to keep sailing fun with a weekly raffle, awards and, of course, good times. 

Next to start is BYC with Wednesday night Twilights which run May 11-August 31 and features a large adult Sabot fleet and very competitive Laser and Harbor 20 fleets. 

The mother of all summer series is “The Beercans” which runs on Thursday night from May 12-September 8 for PHRF boats. 

Summer sailing has always been a big part of my life, one can sail every night of the week with the Lido Isle Yacht Club’s Friday night series.

Last Sunday was the Newport Harbor Yacht Club’s Opening Day ceremonies which was preceded by Saturday’s Opening Day Race. 

The race starts up in Long Beach, out the Long Beach Gate, then down to the Newport Pier. The racers were greeted to a thin cloud cover which provided a solid 10-knot breeze. The smaller or slower boats of the 32-boat fleet start first, which are then pursued by the faster boats. Your finish is scored by the number you finished in. 

Looking through www.joysailing.com photos, this is more of a sail than a race. I know as soon as that starting horn sounds that most of the sailors ask for someone to hold their beer. 

On Sunday Opening Day ceremonies, most if not all of the club’s members felt the importance of everyone getting back on the water and Opening Day returns to normalcy. 

This weekend are the BCYC and BYC opening days, which are always events to look forward to.

I am now headed to a re-start of the Harbor Summer Summit. This will be an hours-long meeting to review how each harbor steward can contribute ideas on how to keep our harbor clean, safe and well-enjoyed. Which is a kind way of saying, let’s open a line of communication so that we all can continue to get along. I’ll be sure to report on who attended and more importantly on who did not?

Hope to sea ya on the airwaves!

~~~~~~~~

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


It’s a tax you won’t normally feel, but the impacts of it are vital

By GARY SHERWIN

If you want to get most Newport Beach people really worked up, talk about taxes.

It doesn’t matter what tax it is. People usually have a strong opinion about the subject, and they usually think whatever tax it is, be it retail, dock fees, property or whatever, they likely feel they are too high.

But there is a tax that is relatively low in town and that’s a very good thing. It’s the Transient Occupancy Tax or TOT.

TOT is the 10% charge made to just about any lodging unit here in town, be it a hotel, short-term rental and even the Crystal Cove Cottages. That fee adds up to become the city’s third largest revenue generator funding such essential services as police and fire. In other words, it’s important cash.

It’s also the way Visit Newport Beach gets funded. The agency gets 18% of the TOT leaving the remaining 82% to go to the general fund. The TOT is paid solely by the lodging properties, meaning no Newport Beach resident pays the tax unless they stay in a hotel or rental property. Prior to the pandemic, this source of revenue exceeded $30 million a year and will probably exceed that this year.

Gary Sherwin

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of Visit Newport Beach

Gary Sherwin

So, this is a pretty good deal for the City of Newport Beach. They make a lot of money, and no resident has to bear the burden of paying for it. The lodging properties pass the TOT on to their guests, so it doesn’t come off their bottom line, but they are ultimately responsible for paying it every month.

So why the lesson on this somewhat obscure revenue source? Because it’s good to know that we have one of the lowest TOT rates as cities around the country start increasing more of these taxes to fund all kinds of projects.

Take Dallas for example. Their City Council recently agreed to put a measure on the ballot in November calling for a 2% increase in their TOT to pay for a new convention center.

Currently, guests pay 7% to the City of Dallas and 6% to the state for a total of 13%. Properties with 100 rooms or more apply an extra 2% for a Tourism Business Improvement District, so now that number is up to 15%. The increase, if approved, takes that up to 17%.

Newport Beach also has a Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID) which imposes a 3% assessment on nine of the largest hotels in the city for the purpose of marketing meetings and conventions. That 3% brings the city up to 13% if you are staying at one of those hotels, but not if you stay at a small inn or a short-term rental.

Most of the largest cities in America routinely are charging 16% or more in TOT, plus special fees like a TBID. You probably never know this since the first time you’ll see this tax is when you check out of the hotel and see your bill.

Here in Orange County, there are cities with a lower TOT than Newport Beach. Places like Stanton, Westminster, Mission Viejo, Orange and Costa Mesa charge 8%. In some cases, like Costa Mesa, there is a TBID. But in all of these cities, except for Costa Mesa, these are not places where visitors tend to go and most of their lodging are motels.

And unlike some of these cities, Newport Beach charges TOT on short-term lodging which is a wonderful thing since this assessment helped the city tremendously through the pandemic. Given that a few hotels closed temporarily, and Fashion Island Hotel will remain closed for another year until the new Pendry takes its place, short-term rentals helped make up the gap in revenue. 

Newport Beach has had a conflicted relationship with these rentals for many years, but their economic contribution to the city is undeniable and COVID certainly brought that to light.

TOT is often thought of as almost secret revenue since residents don’t pay it. However, that changed a bit several years ago when New York City imposed a whopping 21% TOT, by far the highest in the nation, before reducing it because of howls of protest from visitors and businesses.

Is our TOT now too low? I would argue not. It is still nice to be way below Anaheim’s combined 17% and it is slightly lower than the combined 14% of Huntington Beach. The fact that our city also applies the tax to non-hotels gives the city a strong tax base that is dependable even during difficult times.

Some have asked whether having a low TOT rate gives us a competitive advantage. Probably not since visitors don’t decide where to go based on a city’s TOT. But it is nice to know that we can have a lower tax than other communities and still be able to pay our bills plus some.

Other cities will likely try and raise their TOT to fund pet tourism projects like convention centers in Dallas. We don’t need – or want – to and that’s one tax argument that will please residents, even if they aren’t paying the bill.

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


A place to help patients feel beautiful inside and out: Hope Boutique at Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County

The first thing visitors to the Hope Boutique will notice is the warm and welcoming environment. Tasteful design, attractive product displays and attentive service complement the boutique’s primary reason for being: to offer healing and hope.

The oncology-trained cosmetology specialists who work at the Hope Boutique will be doing more than cutting hair and fitting wigs; they will be giving people resources and helping them emotionally and psychologically.

“People with cancer often worry about wanting to look ‘normal,’ and they come to us for answers,” said Cassie Polchow, the senior cosmetology-oncology specialist at the Positive Image Center at City of Hope’s Duarte campus. The Positive Image Center, like the Hope Boutique, was established to help patients minimize appearance-related issues, in keeping with City of Hope’s philosophy of both healing the body and sustaining the spirit.

“A woman may want to talk about fingernails turning a different color or how her hair may grow back with a different texture,” said Polchow. “We listen, we get to understand how the person is feeling, and then we offer recommendations to help them achieve what’s important to them.”

Focused on support

Located on the third floor of Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County, the Hope Boutique is purposeful in its design and mission, noted Judy Rose, City of Hope Orange County’s director of supportive and integrative care programs.

A place to help Hope Boutique

Photos courtesy of City of Hope Orange County

Hope Boutique provides a warm, welcoming environment 

“Everything here is designed to focus on comfort and create a supportive environment,” Rose said. “We want the Hope Boutique to feel like you are shopping in a favorite store. The trained cosmetologist, salon station, the private fitting rooms and the retail space are here to support you wherever you are on your cancer journey.”

Helping people with cancer strengthen and nurture their self-confidence exemplifies City of Hope’s whole-person approach, which encompasses caring for the mind, body and spirit.

“Self-image can play a big part in how you think and feel about yourself when you are undergoing treatment for cancer. It can be challenging to know that you may lose your hair during chemotherapy, for example, even when knowing that the treatment could save your life,” said Wade Smith, M.D., a medical oncologist at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island specializing in breast cancer.

“What sets City of Hope apart is how we see patients as whole people – people who are much more than their illness. That’s why aesthetic services like those at Hope Boutique are so beneficial. A holistic patient experience helps the patient feel empowered, which research suggests can have positive effects on treatment.”

A place to help glimpse

A glimpse of the Hope Boutique at Lennar Foundation Cancer Center at City of Hope Orange County becoming a reality

Personalized care

A licensed, oncology-trained cosmetologist will work one-on-one with patients at the Hope Boutique to offer specialized products and services, including:

–A private salon space for complimentary head shaves.

–Two private dressing rooms where patients can try on post-op mastectomy bras and camisoles.

–Customized fittings for wigs or breast prostheses.

–A retail section that sells hats, scarves, non-toxic nail polish, aluminum-free deodorant, and other accessories and personal care items.

“I’ve had people come back after their treatment is done and say they wouldn’t have gotten through it if they hadn’t come through our doors,” said Polchow.

Emotional connections

Polchow remembers one patient who didn’t want to have stubble from a shaved head but noticed her hair would naturally fall out when combed. 

“She and I sat together for 45 minutes and carefully combed all her hair out,” Polchow said. “She loved it, and her husband said it was the best thing I could have done for her.”

Polchow said those interpersonal connections make working at City of Hope particularly meaningful. “Being able to give back to people and their families is tremendously rewarding.”

The future is hope, and it’s unfolding in Orange County.

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

To make an appointment at the Newport Beach locations, click here or call:

Newport Beach Fashion Island: 949.763.2204

Newport Beach Lido: 949.999.1400


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.

Newport Beach Animal Shelter would like to introduce you to Spring – the sweetest little, approximately, 14-week-old Terrier/Shih Tzu mix. She is part of a fantastic litter of five. Their best guesstimate is that she’ll grow to be a medium-sized dog. Her demeanor is very even keeled. She enjoys human affections and building relationships with other dogs. She displays fantastic energy with her puppy mates.

Pet of the Week Meet Spring

Courtesy of Newport Beach Animal Shelter

Meet Spring

If you’ve been waiting for a beautiful and one-of-a-kind baby that you’d like to share the world with, please feel free to contact the Newport Beach Animal Shelter at 949.718.3454, or through email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out more about Spring.

A reminder about puppies – they need to learn everything – so time, patience and love are key to growing any puppy into a magnificent adult. If you have the time and pride yourself in being devoted to your furry family members, the shelter staff looks forward to hearing from you. 

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.


Coastal Commission meets next week in Costa Mesa

The California Coastal Commission meets Wednesday, May 11 through Friday, May 14 in the Fountain Terrace Room of the Hilton/Orange County Costa Mesa, 3050 Bristol St., in Costa Mesa. 

The sessions, which can be followed at www.coastal.ca.gov/mtgcurr.html, begin each day at 9 a.m. The agenda is available at www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/agenda/#/2022/5.

Only one item pertaining to Newport Beach is on the agenda and it comes up under the Consent Calendar. The item is an application by Jay and Nancy Schulman to reinforce the bulkhead by adding a new, 1’ 4.3” stem wall atop the existing bulkhead coping, and then installing two new tiebacks inserted into the bulkhead coping extending to a new, landward deadman at the property of 1615 Bay Ave.

The meeting will be conducted with public participation possible both virtually through video and teleconference, and in person. The live stream is available here.

The next meetings of the Coastal Commission will be June 8-10.


NHHS Culinary Team travels to Washington, D.C. to compete in National ProStart Invitational

Aspiring chefs from the Newport Harbor High School Culinary Team are headed to Washington, D.C. this week to compete in the National ProStart Invitational, presented by the National Restaurant Assn. Educational Foundation taking place May 6-8. These students are enrolled in NHHS’s Culinary Arts pathway, which offers four successive years of instruction – from basic skills to science and pastry making, under the leadership of Pathway Director Sarah Pilon and ROP Chef Instructor Ashley Kingsbury.

NHHS Culinary Team Figueroa

Click on photo for a larger image

Photos courtesy of Sarah Pilon

NHHS sophomore Arletta Figueroa took home 1st Place and Best in Show trophies for her “In N Out” cake complete with fondant fries and a drink at the recent FCCLA State Leadership Conference in Riverside

Leading up to this, the team of 25 NHHS Culinary students competed in Riverside at the FCCLA State Leadership Conference where they took home multiple trophies in several areas including Creative Cakes, Advanced Breads, and Salad Preparation. First Place and Best In Show was earned by sophomore Arlette Figueroa for her “In N Out” cake complete with fondant fries and drink.

NHHS Culinary Team group

Click on photo for a larger image

The NHHS Culinary Team travels to Washington, D.C. this week joining “Team California” to compete against all the 1st Place state teams throughout the nation in the National ProStart Invitational. Right and far right are Pathway Director Sarah Pilon and ROP Chef Instructor Ashley Kingsbury

This week, Sailor Juniors Kylie Papa, Trixie Kulik, Jeffrey Dangl, Connor Morgan and Senior Pete York will travel to Washington D.C. with “Team California” to compete against all the 1st place state teams throughout the nation. They will have one hour to produce an original three-course meal with only two butane burners, no oven or refrigeration. On the menu is a Citrus Fennel Salad with Housemade Ricotta, Cherry Pistachio Pork Roulade with Browned Butter, Cauliflower Mash and Haricot Verts, and finally Ginger Almond Churros with Chocolate and Basil Syrup. Habit Burger is sponsoring their trip.

Nearly 400 student competitors will put their skills to the test in front of industry leaders, NRAEF Trustees, state restaurant associations, and family and friends – all with hopes of earning coveted scholarships from the nation’s best culinary and restaurant management programs.

After two years, the Invitational returns in person. Go get ‘em Sailors… wishing you great success with your culinary creations.

In 2019, nearly $200,000 in scholarships were awarded to winning students.


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

When good intentions go haywire, life can become more than a little frustrating

TOM MARCHThis is a personal rant. One of those we all go through at one point or another in our life where things go wrong and we’re left feeling helpless.

I got a telephone call in recent days informing me that my uncle, who was a favorite of mine, had passed away following a battle with cancer. A farmer all his life, one had the feeling that he’d be the one strong enough to beat the challenges of this insidious disease.

Wrong.

Days later I received the funeral information that it would take place in the central valley farming town of Waterford where he had worked the land over the years, growing and harvesting, for the most part, peaches and almonds.

Or as my aunt would jokingly say, “ammonds, because they had to knock the L out of ‘em to get them out of the trees.”

My uncle’s Celebration of Life was planned for this past Sunday, at 3 p.m., at the small church in town that their family regularly attended for years.

To make matters worse, because I’ve recently been in and out of the hospital, my doctors are not allowing me to drive for the next 10-12 weeks, which means no funeral attendance for me. As the alternative, I decided to order flowers.

After all, I was reminded that when my dad died years ago, I remembered going into the annex just off the church and seeing all the flowers sent in his remembrance. As I read each card, they all touched my heart.

I’ve never forgotten that day, that experience or that feeling.

Obviously, my wish, not being able to be there, was to give that same feeling to my aunt, two cousins and their families.

And so, connected to my uncle’s obit, was a link through Legacy.com to order flowers. It was simple, they had all the church and date info and regularly do this all the time, so what could go wrong?

I clicked, with plenty of lead time, and selected a beautiful arrangement to be delivered prior to the funeral, then added a thoughtful, personalized message. I felt good!

Come this past Saturday, one day before the funeral, Teleflora called and had questions concerning the order. Teleflora, I guess, were the ones connected to Legacy.com. After answering their questions and concerns, I hung up, turned to my daughter who was overhearing my conversation and said, “That can’t be good. Something tells me they’re not going to be delivered.”

We chuckled. Little did I know.

Then it happened. Sunday morning at 11:40 a.m., an email from Teleflora arrived in my inbox saying, “Regrettably, we are unable to deliver your order for the services.” 

Now, I remind you that this is just over three hours from the service time. To say I was upset would be putting it mildly. 

I called, and after exchanging pleasantries, I was left with knowing that my uncle’s funeral would come and go with no remembrance from me.

I was, how should I say this, ticked!

Well, the good news? Teleflora did offer me a 60% discount on a future order…which prompted me to say, “Well, the next time my uncle dies, I’ll call you!”

I took a deep breath and thought, maybe I should relax before I join my uncle in the next life.

And so, I did.

Checking my other options, donations were also requested (with that famous line “In Lieu of Flowers”) in his name to either Sacramento Shriner’s Children’s Hospital or Stanislaus County Farm Bureau’s Camp Sylvester.

I probably should have gone down this route in the first place.

We’ll miss you Uncle RolandGodspeed!

• • •

This just in…The Newport Beach Firefighter Association & Lifeguard Management Association have both given their key public safety endorsement to Robyn Grant in her run for Newport Beach City Council District 4.

Bobby Salerno, President of the Firefighters Association, said, “Robyn Grant has a 20 plus year legacy of service and commitment to the city, particularly as the Firefighters Association’s two-term appointee to the Civil Service Board.”   

This follows previous endorsements to Grant from the Newport Beach Police Association, Newport Beach Fire Management Association and Crime Survivors PAC.

“I am grateful for the recognition of my candidacy by the men and women comprising the Firefighters and Lifeguard Management Associations,” said Robyn Grant. “I will continue to work closely with the Departments to keep public safety a number one priority in our city.”

City Council District 1 candidate Joe Stapleton, also previously received the police and fire endorsements, the only other candidate running to do so. 

• • •

Some might say that the biggest local news over the weekend relating to quarterbacks and the National Football League was related to Mr. Irrelevant. Afterall, Irrelevant Week, which annually names the last draft pick of the NFL’s annual draft as Mr. Irrelevant, Saturday welcomed Iowa State’s Brock Purdy, who was taken by the San Francisco 49ers with the 262nd and final pick.

Purdy is the 47th Mr. Irrelevant, a Newport Beach tradition started by Paul Salata in 1976. Paul passed in October, one day shy of his 95th birthday.

All that being said, is the news on quarterback Purdy really the biggest in Newport Beach. I would argue, “No.”

Quietly, former Corona del Mar High School star quarterback Chase Garbers, a senior at Cal, went undrafted, but shortly after the final picks signed a free agent contract with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Chase started 11 of Cal’s 12 games in 2021, completing 223 of 348 passes, a 64.3% clip, for 2,531 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also rushed for 456 yards and 4 TDs.

During his time at CdM, Garbers was a record-setting slinger, passing for close to 8,000 yards, while completing 589-of-854 passes for 90 touchdowns.

His brother, Ethan, who followed Chase at CdM, is currently a redshirt-freshman at UCLA.

• • •

Measure B is the hottest issue in town. It has to do with electing a mayor directly or leaving that chore to the City Council as they’re done so forever.

If you don’t know about it, you should. And the good news is that there are several ways to do so.

First up is Speak Up Newport next Wednesday, May 11, offering two ways to hear the program. The first is in-person at the Civic Center Community Room at 100 Civic Center Drive. The second is with their simulcast Zoom presentation.

Following the reception at 5:15, program runs from 6-7 p.m. and will feature Mayor Pro Tem Noah Blom representing the “Yes” side and Walter Stahr the “No” side.

The program is free to attend or log-in to. If Zoom is your thing, go here.

If that doesn’t work, here’s another option. Also next week, on Thursday, May 12 from 7:30-9 a.m., the Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce will present the topic discussion at their Good Morning CdM meeting.

This one will feature City Councilman Will O’Neill on the “Yes” side and former City Manager Homer Bludau on the “No” side.

It’s also a free presentation and will take place at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club.

• • •

The 2022 OC Marathon is in the books. The event started early Sunday morning in the loop surrounding Fashion Island in Newport Beach, worked its way down along the coast, before heading up through Costa Mesa, eventually into Santa Ana and then back to finish at the Orange County Fairgrounds.

The winner of the Men’s Division was JJ Santana, who finished in 2:22:57, beating runner-up Dylan Mark by a full minute. Heather Huggins won the Women’s Division with a time of 3:07:29, almost five full minutes ahead of runner-up Monique Bienvenue, who finished at 3:12:06.

An OC Half-Marathon also took place with Shimeles Abebe winning in 1:07:79 for the men and Sara Lopez winning the women’s side at 1:13:53.


Oh, if pigs could fly

Oh, if pigs could fly

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Photo by Chris Crosson (Instagram @sandcastlekit)

The sandcastle says it all…thanks Chris for the positive reminder on Balboa Island this weekend


Sailing into view

Sailing into view.jpg SNN 5.3

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Photo by Jason Berry (Instagram @its_jason_berry)

Catalina and sailboats in sight


OC’S Destination Marketing Organizations celebrate the “Future of Travel” during National Travel and Tourism Week, so go explore Newport Beach…and beyond

The Destination Marketing Organizations (DMO) of Orange County, recognize the collective strength of the U.S. travel industry during National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW) from May 1-7. Tourism is a vital part of Orange County’s economy, providing jobs for hundreds of thousands of residents and making significant contributions to tax revenues that support city services and programs.

NTTW, the annual celebration of the contributions of the U.S. travel industry, spotlights the critical role that travel will play in driving economic growth and building the path forward.

OC s Destination Marketing group

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Submitted photo

Representatives from Orange County DMOs, CEOs and staff, along with elected officials, gather at a recent Angels game

From theme parks to shopping to beaches, there are plenty of developments throughout Orange County drawing travelers back and specifically to Newport Beach.

Newport Beach & Company is pleased to welcome a new era of luxury with the announcements of three major developments in the heart of Newport Beach within the next two years. Guests can look forward to two premium hotels, VEA Newport Beach, A Marriott Resort & Spa (opening this spring) and Pendry Newport Beach (opening 2023), which are both undergoing top-to-bottom reimaginations. Standing at four stories high with almost 80,000 square feet of indoor, outdoor and dining space, the all-new RH Newport Beach will be an alluring Orange County exclusive with the upscale home furnishings brand’s only Design Gallery in the region.

“Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Newport Beach is boldly embarking on a new era of luxury starting next month with the exciting opening of the new VEA Newport Beach, formerly the Marriott Newport Beach, which is a complete reimagining of the Southern California hospitality experience,” said Newport Beach & Company, President & CEO, Gary Sherwin. “Coming in summer 2023 will be the opening of Pendry Newport Beach which will bring even greater glamour and sophistication to the destination. And in 2024, the new 80,000 square foot RH Newport Beach, complete with rooftop ocean view restaurant will add a new dimension to the offerings of Fashion Island. It is the start of a dynamic new chapter, all fueled by local investor confidence in Newport Beach.”

Since 2020, Orange County tourism has increased 30 percent and in 2021, hotel occupancy throughout the county was 4% higher than predicted by CBRE. Even with strides toward the industry’s recovery, Orange County’s tourism is still 11 percent behind 2019 visitation numbers.

In 2019, Orange County welcomed 50.2 million visitors who spent $9.2 billion throughout the region (Source: CIC Research, Inc.). Looking to the future, Orange County is on pace to return to these 2019 visitation numbers by 2024 (Source: CBRE), which will be a welcome milestone for the industry.

This encouraging outlook for the Orange County tourism industry makes this year’s NTTW theme, “Future of Travel,” fitting for the region as it looks to restore the workforce, help communities recover, foster sustainability, usher in new innovations and reconnect with travelers. 

To learn more about National Travel and Tourism Week, visit www.ustravel.org/NTTW.


From COVID lockdown with Mom to finding my real first job: A college grad’s struggle to navigate the real world

By Natasha Karlin

“Don’t be ridiculous. I will see you all in class on Monday.” These were my Italian Renaissance professor’s last words during my study abroad program in Rome.

I would never see him again.

After spending six weeks taking classes in Madrid, Spain, we had just settled into our new apartment in Rome which was to be our base for the next six weeks before our eventual return to our home school, the University of Washington where I was a sophomore. I was falling in love with adventuring around Europe with my roommates. Little did we know that this distant chatter about an unknown disease emerging from China would escalate into the closing of the Italian borders, the shutdown of our school, and the instructions to pack up and leave on the next flight back to the U.S. Within a matter of hours, I went from exploring the Sistine Chapel, drinking wine, and eating the best pasta I’d ever tasted, to sitting on my couch at home in Newport Beach quarantining with my mom. I barely had time to process what had happened.

From COVID lockdown with Dad

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Photo by Erica Karlin

My dad (Charles Karlin) and me before the UW vs. Cal football game, 2021

Just as my own two-week quarantine ended, California’s official lockdown began, and I would soon discover that I had lots of time to think about how COVID had affected my experience. I realized how grateful I was for the time I did get to spend walking the ancient streets of Lisbon and riding scooters around Madrid’s city center. This was a trip I’d dreamt of ever since I was a kid. I was brokenhearted that it had ended so suddenly and that I was now learning about the Italian Renaissance, not in the streets of Rome, but through photos on a computer in my bedroom in Newport Beach. The next two years of living with COVID meant taking courses online instead of on the gorgeous UW campus, an empty Husky Stadium when there should’ve been football games roaring, socializing safely with just one tiny pod of friends and dealing with a sorority house where masks were required anywhere outside of your room. All of this only deepened my desire for adventure and reiterated the importance of life experiences.

The pandemic that many thought might last a few weeks ended up impacting a good portion of my four years at the University of Washington and has made post-grad life come quicker than I’d imagined. Now, just a few months from college graduation, I am trying to remember these feelings as I ponder what on Earth I am going to do post-grad. Up until now, my life has been pretty much laid out for me as I’ve gone from elementary school to middle school to high school to college. My Newport Beach peers and I have all been on the same path. Choosing my own life’s journey now feels daunting because my peers will start doing different things and we will no longer be on that path together. It is also exciting, however, because I can choose to do virtually anything I want to do. I am grateful that I have been taught that nothing should be taken for granted as it’s helped me prioritize and realize how important gaining real-life experiences are to me.

So now here I am weighing my options, attempting to make a smart plan for next year. The question I have been asking myself when I picture my life post-grad has boiled down to this:

Newport or New York?

Do I make the practical decision and move home, or do I follow a lifelong dream of spending my 20s exploring New York City? Do I save money and continue to apply for jobs near my family in Newport Beach, or do I embark on an adventure to one of the most exciting but expensive cities in the world with no job lined up? How do I know if I am making the right decision? Is there a right decision?

Obviously, I am not the only one feeling the weight of these choices. So many people my age are in the same boat. In fact, my five closest friends from home are asking themselves the same question.

Through Newport Harbor High School and St. Andrews Church I was able to create unbreakable bonds with these five girls. We conquered high school together and all chose to attend different colleges across the country from San Diego State to the University of New Hampshire. The distance from home and each other helped us realize how lucky we are to have been raised here in Newport Beach, together, and this has helped our friendships grow stronger than ever. Although we are studying completely different things including data analytics, elementary education, English literature and more, my friends and I have shared the dream of one day taking on the city that never sleeps. For some reason, however, it always felt impractical and unattainable. It wasn’t until COVID changed everyone’s perspectives on life that this choice to up and move somewhere out of our comfort zone seemed like the perfect opportunity for a much-needed adventure rather than a fanciful aspiration.

From COVID lockdown besties

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Courtesy of Natasha Karlin

All my high school besties at G Street in Newport Beach. Top row (L-R) Paige Nye, Paxton Bryant, Piper Hjort and Adena Rothbard. Bottom row (L-R) Ally Harano and Natasha Karlin

My generation has been through some unprecedented times, like everyone else in the world, but at a particularly crucial moment in our lives – it has instilled in us resilience and gratitude and has affected our ideas on life post-grad. I’ve discovered that it is so normal to feel lost in our 20s because the structure of our lives completely changes. No more convenient layouts. No more hand holding. Just you, your bachelor’s degree and a world of possibilities. With this, it is so hard not to compare yourself to others: Why does it feel like everyone else has a job lined up prior to graduating? Why is there this self-imposed pressure to land a job right away in your projected field to kick off your career? There is no way to measure your “success” in the way grades were always an indicator of how well you were doing in school. Now, with the rest of our lives ahead of us we get to measure our own versions of success with how we feel and how much we grow, and this is so much better than any grade.

So here I am now: a month away from graduation without a sturdy plan for my next chapter. I have no idea what my future holds, but if COVID has taught me anything, it’s this: Embracing exciting life experiences that teach me about myself may turn out to be just as beneficial as stepping right onto a planned career path. None of my friends or I truly know what we are doing, but that is the beauty of being this age. Making mistakes is part of the journey. As I continue my efforts to select and land my first real job post-grad, I am excited to see if I end up making it to New York City or if I come home to Newport Beach.

At the end of the day, and with everything going on in this crazy world, my options could be a whole lot worse. 

Natasha Karlin is a Newport Beach resident and graduate of Newport Harbor High School (class of 2018). Currently a senior at the University of Washington, Karlin will graduate in June with a degree in English Literature. She lives in Dover Shores with her parents, younger sister and her dog, Archie. She plans to pursue a career in marketing or sales with an emphasis in writing as she navigates life post-grad.

Stu News will be following Natasha’s journey, so look forward to her future submissions.


City Manager’s Updates

From the desk of Grace Leung

Grace Leung

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Courtesy of City of Newport Beach

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung

Community Members:

After nearly two years of effort that included numerous community workshops and public input opportunities, the city’s Housing Element update is nearing completion and certification by the state. The Housing Element update, part of the city’s General Plan, is a critical document to comply with a state mandate compelling Newport Beach to plan for the addition of at least 4,845 housing units over the next decade.

At a study session this week, the City Council heard an update from the city’s Community Development staff on the status of the document and response from the state Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), the agency tasked with certifying compliance among cities. After the Council adopted the Housing Element update in February, staff submitted the document to HCD for a mandatory 60-day review. The city’s response to HCD comments was discussed at the study session, and the Council provided direction to staff on the inclusion of potential development sites. Our plan is to incorporate Council direction and HCD comments into the latest revision in the next few months.

It is important to note that at this stage of the process, the city is not considering the merits of specific development projects in relation to the Housing Element update. The update identifies potential sites where housing could be developed. There are still multiple steps left in the certification process before any development identified in the Housing Element update could begin. As is the case for all development projects, any proposed projects would be noticed and subject to public review and approval by the Planning Commission and City Council. 

I would like to thank the residents who participated in the development of this document, along with members of the Housing Element Update Advisory Committee (HEUAC), and Planning Commissioners who devoted considerable time and effort to this project so far. I will keep the community updated on the progress of the Housing Element update and future opportunities for public review and comment.

City Manager, Grace K. Leung

2022 Tree-mendous Arbor Day Celebration

On April 22, Lincoln Elementary School hosted the City’s Arbor Day Celebration event. Present at the event were Councilmember Joy Brenner, PB&R Commission Chair Diane Daruty, CalFire Representative Abigail Srader, Lincoln Elementary Principal Kristin DeMicco, school staff and 3rd grade students and Public Works Department staff. The city is proud to be recognized by the National Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree City USA for the 32nd consecutive year. In addition, because of our tremendous planting efforts last year, we are proud to have received the Growth Award, which we have been awarded 19 times. Following the presentations and reading of the Arbor Day Proclamation, attendants took part in planting five trees on school grounds.

These trees will provide the 3rd graders the opportunity to watch the trees grow over the years to come.

Public Works Springs Into Summer Beach Mode

Spring Break signaled the busy summer beach season is fast approaching. In preparation for summer crowds, Public Works staff and city contractors are working full speed on necessary and desired maintenance and construction activities in popular park and beach areas. Work is planned and coordinated to be completed before the influx of summer crowds arrive, when more of the construction and maintenance activities are shifted to inland areas of the city.

Several of our facilities are included in this preparation work. For example, the Balboa Pier Restroom building had its rooftop pressure washed clean and the Port Carney restroom facility received minor repairs and a fresh coat of paint. 

City equipment maintenance crews are also preparing city fleet and equipment for the summer season ahead. Beach cleaning equipment and beach tractors are scheduled for their routine service, which includes replacement of worn and malfunctioning parts. The elements at the beach cause accelerated deterioration, which requires frequent maintenance. This also includes the city’s three Lifeguard Rescue Boats, which will be removed from the water for dry dock service. This dry dock service will include application of a coat of paint below the water line, rebuilding of the engine and running gear and new muffler installation.

Public Works Awarded ASCE Outstanding Parks and Recreation Project of the Year

The Public Works Department was recently honored to receive the award for Outstanding Parks and Recreation Project of the year from the Orange County Branch of the American Society of Civil Engineers. The awards ceremony recognized Grant Howald Park for its positive community impact, overcoming construction obstacles and environmentally friendly features.

You’re Invited to “Touch a Truck” at May 14 Event

Please join us for a “Touch a Truck’ event on Saturday, May 14 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Balboa Pier parking lot in celebration of National Public Works Week.

It will be a hands-on opportunity to get up close to heavy trucks and equipment – and learn how they are used to keep Newport Beach maintained. 

Earth Day Celebration Draws Big Crowds

On Saturday, April 23, OC Parks and the Newport Bay Conservancy celebrated Earth Day at the Peter and Mary Muth’s Interpretive Center. The event welcomed 1,000 attendees with 40 exhibitors, including a booth hosted by the Natural Resources division from the Recreation and Senior Services department. The energy of the event was reflective of the weather: sunny, warm and buzzing. Exhibitors and partnering agencies were all smiles, greeting each other with hugs after the event has been on hiatus the last two years from the pandemic. Families participated in a scavenger hunt by collecting information and free giveaways. The Natural Resources booth featured a tidepool model and information about rules to follow when visiting the Marine Protected Areas like Little Corona del Mar, as well as information about Camp Newport this summer.

Children balanced on colorful steppingstones to peer into the model (crafted from a plastic kiddy pool) to excitedly tell Marine Naturalist staff about the animals they have seen on their own explorations in the tidepools. When asked “what is the one thing you can do to help protect our tidepools” most children quickly responded, “to throw away trash and not litter.”

After 52 years of celebrating Earth Day, the event continues to bring the community together to inspire change and make the world a better place locally and globally.

Movie Night at Marina Park: Luca, May 13

Bring your family and friends out to Marina Park to enjoy a screening of Luca on Friday, May 13. The event will begin at 6:45 p.m. with showtime at 7:45 p.m. Fun activities, free popcorn and food will be available for purchase. Bring a chair and blanket to enjoy the evening at Marina Park.

Reduce Water Use Through These Simple Tips

In response to continued drought conditions, we are continuing to ask residents and businesses to reduce water wherever possible.

Future mandated drought water restrictions are very likely and we are awaiting further information from the state. 

In the meantime, the city suggests that you review your outdoor water use for landscaping.

A couple of questions we suggest you ask yourself:

–Do you see water running down the gutter after your sprinklers go on?

–Are your sprinklers over-spraying onto your driveway and sidewalk?

–Do you hear a “squish” sound when you walk on your grass after watering?

–Have you talked to your gardener about reducing your water use?

–Did you know if you reduce your outdoor watering time by 1 min. on a 5 min. watering cycle, you’ll use 20% less water?

For water saving programs and rebates, visit www.ocwatersmart.com/. If you would like a free inspection or review from our Utilities Department staff regarding your water use, feel free to contact us at 949.644.3011.

Scholarships Available for College-bound Seniors and Transfer Students: Applications Due May 2

The city is accepting scholarship applications from college-bound seniors and transfer students by Monday, May 2 at 5 p.m. to earn up to $700 for educational expenses. 

The City of Newport Beach Ackerman Scholarship Program was established to assist qualified students in obtaining a higher education. Funds for the program are provided through an endowment from the Ackerman Trust. Scholarships may be used for tuition, books, laboratory and/or academic fees.

For eligibility information and to apply, go to www.newportbeachca.gov/scholarship.

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team is now operating in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to mental and behavioral health crises. The mobile unit is staffed with mental health specialists and EMTs, and works closely with the city’s police and fire departments.

This week the Be Well team: 

–Transported two people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter.

–Transported two people to crisis stabilization facilities for care.

–Reunited an elderly man with his family after addressing a mental health crisis.

–Provided First Aid to two people experiencing homelessness.

–Conducted 31 outreach interactions with residents and people experiencing homelessness.

Homelessness Update

The City of Newport Beach provides a comprehensive response to address homelessness through a coordinated effort by city staff, contractors, partner agencies and nonprofit groups.

This week, the city’s homeless outreach and response teams: 

–Secured permanent housing for a man who experienced homelessness in Newport Beach for 11 years.

–Referred two unsheltered people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter for temporary housing and services. As of this week, 16 people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the facility.

–Visited three newly housed clients to provide supportive services.

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

Serve Your Community! Apply Now for Vacant Seats on Boards, Commissions

The City of Newport Beach is currently accepting applications to fill the following upcoming vacancies (all terms are for four years, expiring June 30, 2026):

–Board of Library Trustees (one seat)

–Building and Fire Board of Appeals (two seats)

–City Arts Commission (one seat)

–Civil Service Board (one seat)

–Harbor Commission (three seats)

–Parks, Beaches & Recreation Commission (two seats)

–Planning Commission (one seat)

All seats will become vacant when the existing terms expire on June 30, 2022.

All applicants must be qualified electors of the city, none of whom shall hold any paid office or employment in city government (Section 702 of the City Charter).

The deadline for filing applications is noon on Wednesday, May 11, 2022. The application and additional information about the Boards and Commissions can be found at www.newportbeachca.gov/vacancy or by calling 949.644.3005. The application and information about the Boards and Commissions can also be accessed through the city’s website at www.newportbeachca.gov/bcc.

For more information, contact the City Clerk’s Office at 949.644.3005.

This Week’s Events

Monday, May 2

Civil Service Board

City Council Chambers

100 Civic Center Drive – 5 p.m.

Thursday, May 5

Water Quality Coastal Tidelands Committee Meeting

Crystal Cove Conference Room, Bay 2D

100 Civic Center Drive – 3-4 p.m.

See the full schedule

Editor’s Note: City Manager’s Updates was received Friday, April 30 and is subject to editing so the information is current.


Regattas and Races…

Regattas and Races 5.3

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Photo by Bronny Daniels | Joysailing.com

NHYC 

NHYC Opening Day

April 30

Overall

1 Schooner, Richard Straman, NHYC

2 Ranger 33, Jim Madden, NHYC 

3 Andrews 38, Alan Andrews/Molly Lynch, BYC

4 Ericson 35-MK II, Avery/Benedetti/Fuller, NHYC

5 50 DH, Harinda de Silva, LAYC

6 J/105, Brian Dougherty, NHYC 

7 Yawl, Michael Sabourin, NHYC

8 J/120, Hogan family, NHYC

9 Capri 23.5, Bryan Nickel, NHYC

10 SC 52, Steve Sellinger, NHYC 

11 Andrews 50, Andy Rose/Tom Purcell, BYC 

12 Platu 25, Rosene family, BYC

13 J/120, John Snook, LBYC

14 Choate 48, Richley family, NHYC

15 Cal 40, Vince Valdes, NHYC

16 J/124, Charles Brewer, NHYC

17 J/44, Paul Stemler, NHYC

18 J/120, Janet Mostafa, BYC

19 J/99, Timothy Harmon, CRA

20 Farr 40, Steve Brown, BCYC 

21 SC 70, Commodore James O. Buckingham, NHYC

22 Ker – 51, John Raymont, BYC

23 L30, Charles Ullman, BYC

24 DK 46, Jared Gargano, BYC

25 J/29, Jaime Malm, NHYC

26 Star Boat, Chas Beek/Adam Bradley, NHYC

27 Nelson Marek 70, Craig L. Reynolds, BYC

28 Hinkley, Jim Warmington, NHYC

29 Thompson 5.90, Greg Dair, CBYC

30 SC 50, Carl W. Fuller, NHYC

31 Sloop, Ted Berry, NHYC

32 J/70, Tom Garnett, NHYC

Division 1 

1 SC 52, Steve Sellinger, NHYC 

2 Andrews 50, Andy Rose/Tom Purcell, BYC 

3 Farr 40, Steve Brown, BCYC 

4 SC 70, Commodore James O. Buckingham, NHYC

5 Ker – 51, John Raymont, BYC

6 DK 46, Jared Gargano, BYC

7 Nelson Marek 70, Craig L. Reynolds, BYC

8 SC 50, Carl W. Fuller, NHYC

Division 2 

1 Andrews 38, Alan Andrews/Molly Lynch, BYC

2 J/105, Brian Dougherty, NHYC 

3 J/120, Hogan family, NHYC

4 J/120, John Snook, LBYC

5 Choate 48, Richley family, NHYC

6 J/124, Charles Brewer, NHYC

7 J/44, Paul Stemler, NHYC

8 J/120, Janet Mostafa, BYC

9 J/99, Timothy Harmon, CRA

10 L30, Charles Ullman, BYC

11 Hinkley, Jim Warmington, NHYC

Division 3 

1 Schooner, Richard Straman, NHYC

2 Ranger 33, Jim Madden, NHYC 

3 Ericson 35-MK II, Avery/Benedetti/Fuller, NHYC

4 50 DH, Harinda de Silva, LAYC

5 Yawl, Michael Sabourin, NHYC

6 Capri 23.5, Bryan Nickel, NHYC

7 Platu 25, Rosene family, BYC

8 Cal 40, Vince Valdes, NHYC

9 J/29, Jaime Malm, NHYC

10 Star Boat, Chas Beek/Adam Bradley, NHYC

11 Thompson 5.90, Greg Dair, CBYC

12 Sloop, Ted Berry, NHYC

13 J/70, Tom Garnett, NHYC

BYC 

2022 Windependent Regatta

April 23

Adult Sabot A Fleet (4 races, 1 discard)

1 Lanny Coon, MBYC, Total 11, Net 5

2 Lynn Acosta, DPYC, Total 9, Net 6

3 Susan Jennings, BYC, Total 12, Net 8

4 Karen Luttrell, BYC, Total 12, Net 8

5 Gail Kalscheur, BYC, Total 19, Net 13

6 Dennis Allison, BYC, Total 21, Net 15

Adult Sabot B Fleet (4 races, 1 discard)

1 Sandra Lindsey, BYC, Total 6, Net 3

2 Eva Evans, BYC, Total 10, Net 6

3 Teresa Power, BYC, Total 11, Net 6

4 Stacy Ware, SSC, Total 14, Net 10

5 Daniel Pearce, SSC, Total 20, Net 14

April 23-24

Junior Sabot A Fleet (5 races)

1 Maddie Nichols, MBYC, Total 7

2 Zarrin Harvey, DPYC, Total 8

3 Landon Stahl, BYC, Total 21

4 Siena Nichols, BYC, Total 21

5 Lincoln Betz, BYC, Total 27

6 Charlotte Carmichael, BYC, Total 28

7 Oliva Norton, NHYC, Total 28

Junior Sabot B Fleet (5 races)

1 Piercen Giordani, NHYC, Total 7

2 Jack Condon, NHYC, Total 11

3 Thei Goodman, BCYC, Total 13

Junior Sabot C1 Fleet (5 races)

1 Will Ramsay, NHYC, Total 5

2 Hank Dickerson, NHYC, Total 15

3 Chloe Curtin, BCYC, Total 19

4 Camryn Homer, BCYC, Total 22

5 Jack Swartzbaugh, BYC, Total 23

6 Liam Flanagan, LIYC, Total 27

7 Claire Suplizio, LIYC, Total 36

8 Jake Good, LIYC, Total 41

Junior Sabot C2 Fleet (4 races)

1 Augie Wise, LBYC, Total 14

2 Victoria Swan, BYC, Total 16

3 Isabella Swan, BYC, Total 16

4 Jack Davis, BYC, Total 17

5 Jewel Garcia, BCYC, Total 20

6 Audrey Ingham, LIYC, Total 21

7 Molly Torres, BCYC, Total 23

8 Mira Burke-Wilding, BCYC, Total 31

9 Bradley Kosoff, BYC, Total 33

10 Benjamin Benahmed, LIYC, Total 37

11 Alley Schrock, BCYC, Total 40

12 Elizabeth Nash, LBYC, Total 46

Junior Sabot C3 Fleet (4 races)

1 Zoey Cringan, LBYC, Total 5

2 Taj Lewis, LBYC, Total 8

3 Jaron Dobkin, LIYC, Total 16

4 Lin Zhou, BYC, Total 18

5 Samantha Whitton, BYC, Total 22

6 Jill Davis, BYC, Total 22

7 Landon Earlabaugh, BYC, Total 28

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

Local initiated into Phi Kappa Phi

Lindsay Mull, of Newport Beach, was recently initiated into The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective all-discipline collegiate honor society. Mull was initiated at Westmont College.

Mull is among approximately 25,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni to be initiated into Phi Kappa Phi each year. Membership is by invitation only and requires nomination and approval by a chapter. Only the top 10 percent of seniors and 7.5 percent of juniors are eligible for membership. Graduate students in the top 10 percent of the number of candidates for graduate degrees may also qualify, as do faculty, professional staff and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction.

Phi Kappa Phi was founded in 1897 under the leadership of undergraduate student Marcus L. Urann who had a desire to create a different kind of honor society: one that recognized excellence in all academic disciplines. 

Today, the Society has chapters on more than 325 campuses in the United States, its territories and the Philippines. Its mission is “To recognize and promote academic excellence in all fields of higher education and to engage the community of scholars in service to others.”

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

The Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUD) is recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month.

The recognition includes a series of parent education sessions to be hosted each Wednesday throughout the month. The sessions will begin at 6 p.m.

They also have a Virtual 5K that is free to participate in. Participants have opportunities to win prizes.

For more information on all the above, go to www.nmusd.ca.mentalhealth.


Passenger traffic at JWA nears pre-pandemic levels of 2019

Airline passenger traffic at John Wayne Airport (JWA) increased in March 2022 as compared to March 2021. In March 2022, the airport served 916,767 passengers, an increase of 137.9% when compared with the March 2021 passenger traffic count of 385,396.

For reference sake, there were 337,981 passengers in March 2020 and 923,403 passengers in March 2019.

Commercial aircraft operations in March 2022 of 7,710 increased 45.1% and commuter aircraft operations of 484 increased 50.8% when comparing with March 2021 levels.

Passenger traffic jets

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Courtesy of JWA

Total aircraft operations increased in March 2022 as compared with the same month in 2021. In March 2022, there were 25,299 total aircraft operations (take-offs and landings), a 1.1% increase compared to 25,021 total aircraft operations in March 2021.

For the two previous years there were 17,020 (take-offs and landings) in March 2020 and 26,107 in March 2019.

General aviation activity of 17,056 accounted for 67.4% of the total aircraft operations during March 2022 but decreased 11.9% compared with March 2021.

Compared to March 2020 general aviation activity was 10,906 and 17,903 in March 2019.

The top three airlines in March 2022 based on passenger count were Southwest Airlines (336,102), American Airlines (154,412) and United Airlines (141,003).


SPON votes unanimously to oppose Measure B

The Board of Directors of SPON (Still Protecting Our Newport) voted unanimously to oppose the June ballot item known as Measure B to directly elect the Newport Beach Mayor. The board members concluded that a directly elected mayor would be a disaster for Newport Beach primarily because it will shift the current balance of power from seven equal councilmembers to one mayoral superpower and six lesser councilmembers.

In addition, the board is concerned that the cost to implement this will likely run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for the new staff positions needed to carry out the increased mayoral responsibilities.

The SPON board is especially concerned that the Measure B proposal will give the mayor the exclusive power to control what is included on the city council meeting agendas, resulting in an empowered mayor who can unilaterally decide what issues the council will – and won’t – consider. It is conceivable that this powerful mayor position could become a “one-stop shop” for developers and others who contribute to the mayor’s campaign in exchange for getting their development item on the agenda. It is equally conceivable that community and environmental groups may not be able to have their community-focused items included on the council agenda if this powerful mayor initiative is passed.

The SPON board is also concerned that this powerful mayor position will subvert the will of Newport Beach residents who voted for term limits for those serving on city council. Currently, city councilmembers are limited to serving two consecutive four-year terms – a total of eight consecutive years. Under the directly elected Mayor proposal, a City Council member could serve two consecutive four-year terms, followed by two consecutive four-year terms as mayor, for a total of 16 consecutive years in office. The SPON board believes this will attract career politicians who are looking for a step up to their next elected office, rather than encouraging civic-minded folks to run for office whose only goal is to serve the needs of the Newport Beach community.

According to SPON president, Charles Klobe, “Since 1974, SPON has worked tirelessly to protect the natural environment of Newport Beach, from saving the Back Bay from commercial development, to working out a Settlement Agreement with JWA to limit growth. The directly elected mayor initiative will give too much power to the mayor and threatens our ability to maintain the quality-of-life Newport Beach residents have always enjoyed.

“For these reasons SPON strongly urges voters to Vote ‘No’ on Measure B on the June primary ballot.”


Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council to hold National Day of Prayer breakfast

Following a couple of years of online meetings, Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council has announced they will be meeting in person to mark the National Day of Prayer while enjoying a great breakfast on Thursday, May 5 from 7-9 a.m. at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Newport Mesa Irvine Virjee

Click on photo for a large image

Courtesy of Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council

Dr. Framroze Virjee

The featured speaker is Dr. Framroze Virjee, president, CSU Fullerton. They will also have various faith leaders offering community prayers starting with individual, family and moving to the nation and the world. Music will be provided by the All American Boys Chorus.

Tickets are $25 per person or $200 for a Table for 10. Purchase tickets here.

To join via Zoom, go to https://us02web.zoom.us/j/4859758077. Meeting ID: 485 975 8077, or call +1.408.638.0968 (US Toll).

Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council holds meetings every third Wednesday of the month. Online meetings are free to join.