A $13 million project to install solar structures at 32 sites throughout the Newport-Mesa Unified School District will be the topic of a community meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday Oct. 30 at the Corona del Mar Middle School enclave.
The district’s Board of Education approved the installation of “solar photovoltaic structures in the form of carports and lunch shelters” on Sept. 9, according to an event announcement. The district is finalizing the design and location where the structures are feasible and cost effective, with the first phase the project schedule to begin at four high schools over winter break.
The community meeting will take place in room 414, the tech room, of the enclave at the campus at 2101 Eastbluff Drive. Parking is available in the enclave lot by the baseball and softball fields.
Borrego Solar Systems, Inc. will install the district-owned structures. Funding for the project includes $3 million from a no interest loan from the California Energy Commission, $5 million from Proposition 39 funds and $5 million from the district’s Special Reserve Funds for Capital Outlay.
“The savings from the photovoltaic installations will pay back the District its investment and provide an income stream over the twenty-five (25) year life of the system,” according to an email announcing the event. “No general funds which could have been used in classrooms will be employed in the projects.”
1. Corona del Mar High School’s production of “Noises Off” will continue its run this weekend, with shows at 7 p.m. tonight and Saturday at Newport Harbor High School’s Loats Theater at 600 Irvine Ave. “This is a crazy, fun show with a revolving two story set and all sorts of antics and chaos will have you laughing all the way through,” a school announcement said. Tickets are $10 for students and $15 for the general public and can be purchased at the door or online. There will be a final performance at 2 p.m. Oct. 26.
2. Everything will be coming up mums this weekend as Sherman Library & Gardens and the Orange County Chrysanthemum Society host a chrysanthemum show, featuring hundreds of mums on display including single stem mums, container-grown mums, baskets of mums, bonsai-style mums and more. Certified national judges will be judging the flowers, and single-stem and container-grown mums will be available for sale. There also will be children’s activities, horticulture lectures, docent-led garden tours and more. The event will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Sherman Library & Gardens is located at 2647 East Coast Highway.
3. And at Roger’s Gardens, everything’s coming up roses! The Orange County Rose Show will be held at Roger’s Gardens this weekend as the Orange County Rose Society presents its annual Bounty of Roses show, one of the largest rose shows in the state. Hundreds of blooms from some of the top rosarians in the country will be entered into the accredited show, which is sanctioned by the American Rose Society. Novices are encouraged to enter their roses, and the show is free and open to the public. For details, visit Roger’s Gardens’ website, and to view the schedule, click here. The show will be open from 1:30 to 5 p.m. Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Roger’s Gardens is located at 2301 San Joaquin Hills Road.
4. Happy 45th birthday, Recycled Rags! The shop will host its monthly parking lot party from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. The first 25 customers will receive a coupon for $5 off any purchase of more than $25, there will be a chance to win a $100 gift certificate, and special refreshments will be served through the day. Recycled Rags is located at 2731 East Coast Highway. For more information call (949) 675-5553.
5. Crystal Cove State Park will host a low tide, guided tidepool walk to Pelican Point at 4 p.m. Saturday, where a volunteer will help identify animals. Meet at Pelican Point parking lot #2, which is at the top of the boardwalk near the parking lot on the coastward side of Newport Coast. There also will be a naturalist-led family hike at 9 a.m. Sunday, where you can learn about plants and animals living in the park. Meet at the Berns Amphitheatre , which is inland at the School-State Park entrance. The park has a $15 day-use parking fee.
“He appears to be of Caucasian, Asian, or middle-eastern descent, 15-25 years old, 5’9” tall, 130 pounds, with long black hair and brown eyes,” a news release said. “He has a small healed surgical scar on the right side of his neck. He was wearing orange and white Hawaiian print swim trunks and a black button up dress shirt with faint vertical lines.”
Authorities released a sketch of the man, and his photograph is available online.
Anyone with information is asked to call Orange County Sheriff’s Coroner Division at (714) 647-7411 and reference case number 14-03965-MM.
Newport Beach police took a report of a shoplifting at 6 p.m. Thursday in the 3100 block of East Coast Highway. The loss was $400, a report said.
Officers also took a report of a burglary from a motor vehicle in the 3300 block of East Coast Highway on Wednesday. The burglary occurred between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, and the loss was $400, a report said.
Harbor Day School will host Make a Difference Day on Saturday, where families can participate in a variety of service projects or stop by to make a donation to one of several local charities.
The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the school at 3443 Pacific View Drive, and the public is invited to participate, according to a news release.
Make a Difference Day began in 1992, created by the USA Weekend magazine, and has included millions of volunteers in the largest single-day of volunteering in the country, the news release said.
At Harbor Day’s event, participants can work with the school’s Girl Scouts to make sack lunches for Lighthouse Ministries’ local soup kitchen, create bookmarks for Project Education and Hope in Guatemala, make blankets for Project Linus, create pictures for Color a Smile and more.
Organizers also are asking for donations of gently used books for Orange County schools, business clothing, in wearable condition and on hangers, for Working Wardrobes, and bicycles in any condition for all ages for the SW Community Center/Santa Ana. There also will be baked goods, lemonade and hot dogs for purchase to raise money for Room to Read and nuts or magazines for U.S. military troops that you can purchase through a Care to Share program, the release said.
Police investigating a car stopped on the road early Tuesday on San Miguel Drive near MacArthur Boulevard ended with six arrests — the driver on suspicion of DUI and five passengers for other alcohol-related offenses, police said.
A seventh man was arrested the same day at the same location in an unconnected case, said police spokeswoman Jennifer Manzella.
Online police records state that police responded to the location at 12:09 a.m. Tuesday to investigate a report of a suspicious, occupied vehicle.
An officer found a silver Chevrolet sedan stopped along the south curb on San Miguel with several men congregating outside it, said police spokeswoman Jennifer Manzella.
“The subjects indicated that the driver had stopped the car and walked away,” she said, apparently after fighting with one of the passengers. The officer found the driver, who said he owned the car, nearby, and the man returned to the vehicle.
“There were several open containers of alcohol visible in the car and a majority of the subjects at the scene appeared to be intoxicated,” Manzella said. “Additional officers responded to the scene to assist in the investigation.”
The driver, a 19-year-old Lakewood man, was arrested on suspicion of DUI at 1:45 a.m., and bail was $2,500.
Police reports state that at 12:53 a.m., officers arrested a 24-year-old Los Angeles man on suspicion of obstructing an officer an appropriation of lost property. The man had possession of a credit card with someone else’s name on it, Manzella said, and repeatedly refused to comply with officers’ orders and attempted to leave the scene, she said. His bail was $500.
Between 1:28 a.m. and 2:46 a.m., police also arrested four others — a man, 21, of Santa Ana, a man 28, of Anaheim, a man, 21, of Anaheim, and a man, 19, of Lakewood, all on suspicion of disorderly conduct while intoxicated, and all with bail set at $500, reports state.
The men, Manzella said, “were intoxicated and unable to care for their own safety or the safety of others. They were taken into custody for being drunk in public.”
In a separate incident in the same location at 9:44 p.m. Tuesday, a 42-year-old Costa Mesa man also was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct while intoxicated, with bail at $500.
In other police news, a 43-year-old Westminster man was arrested at 4:15 p.m. Wednesday at East Coast Highway and Poinsettia Avenue on suspicion of driving with a suspended license; bail was $500. A 42-year-old Anaheim Hills woman was arrested at 9:19 p.m. Tuesday in the 7800 block of East Coast Highway on suspicion of DUI; her bail was $2,500.
Police took report of a burglary from a motor vehicle in the 400 block of Jasmine Avenue on Wednesday. The burglary, with no reported loss available, occurred between 8 p.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday. Police also took a report of a grand theft in the 400 block of Newport Center Drive on Wednesday. The theft, with a loss of $1,139, occurred between 4:25 and 4:45 p.m. Wednesday, according to a report.
What began as a common theme in her college application essays back in 2012 became a father-daughter partnership for a Corona del Mar family, who published a book this fall aimed at educating citizens about the Constitution, the U.S. government and how to save America.
“Vigilance: The Price of Liberty” was released nationally in late September, but co-author Megan Zwerling said the book began two years ago when she was a senior at Corona del Mar High School.
“I had this newfound love of history,” she said, after taking an Advanced Placement U.S. History class. “I knew I wanted to work in the healthcare industry.”
When two college applications asked for essays about the biggest issues she’d face her future, she began to write about how the government has affected the healthcare industry and the impact of government regulations on advances in that industry.
“I was looking forward to working for this dream about how I might own a biotech company some day, but has government become too large and too opaque for me to do any good?” she said.
The essays turned into a senior project with the same theme, and as she and her father, Robert Zwerling, discussed her research.
“I had my parents read the essays so many times to make sure the grammar was all correct,” she said. “He said we should write a book, and I said, ‘Ha ha.’”
He didn’t let go of the idea, however. By the time they were driving cross-country to the University of South Carolina, where she currently is a junior studying biomedical engineering, Zwerling figured out that he was serious.
“We talked about it the entire trip,” she said. “By the end, we had a schedule and I thought, ‘We’re really doing this.’”
In the beginning, Zwerling said, they each took a turn writing a chapter, comparing notes and talking every Sunday morning about their progress. Eventually, she said, they reorganized the book, combining their work.
According to the Holt Publishing website, the book “is about liberty and how it is tied to our prosperity.”
“Unless we become vigilant, know the Constitution, and demand a well-managed government, then the American dream will die with the next generation,” the website states. “This book guides the reader through a working knowledge of the Constitution, analyzes the social and economic problems that stem from political corruption, and provides seven solutions to save America.”
Zwerling said that the book’s ideal audience is high school students heading to college. In fact, she said, she is working with officials at her university to introduce the book into the curriculum, perhaps as a summer book requirement for incoming freshman as part of the school’s “First-Year Reading Experience” program.
“This impacts everyone, no matter your major,” she said. “If you live in the United States, if you’re American, this is for you. If you’re 18 to 25, you’re the ones who are going to fix this. If you’re older, you can understand how things have changed.”
CdMHS history teacher Laura Mayberry said she was “over the moon” at Zwerling’s success.
“She has had a strong sense of purpose and community,” Mayberry said. “She cares a great deal about the future of the United States and its continued success.”
Zwerling said she has been in contact with Newport Beach library officials to organize a book event when she is home from school, and that she’s arranged a book signing at a coffee shop in Columbia, South Carolina.
The book is also available online.
Cover image courtesy of Megan Zwerling.
A Corona del Mar teenager, driving home after a water polo practice at Mater Dei High School, rescued a man from an overturned car Monday evening after three vehicles crashed on the 73 toll road near Bear Street, just above the 55 freeway.
“I have a good habit of looking through cars to see what they’re doing ahead,” said Jeff Delaney, 17, a senior at the school in Santa Ana. “And I noticed a car in front of me moving to the left, into the shoulder, and that was kind of weird to me so I slowed down and moved left, too.”
California Highway Patrol Officer Justin Cox said the initial crash involved two cars and no injuries, but a 79-year-old Newport Beach man driving a Jeep Grand Cherokee then hit those cars and overturned about 7:15 p.m.
“I saw it sliding upside down, and sparks were flying,” Delaney said.
He jumped from his car, he said, and sprinted across three lanes of traffic to the overturned Jeep.
“There was one man in the car, upside down, and I went around to see if he was OK,” Delaney said. “I was stepping over gas and stuff on the ground, and I couldn’t open the front door — it was stuck against the asphalt. And he’s just hanging upside down.”
The sparks, smoke from an airbag and gasoline caused Delaney to worry about an explosion, he said, so he went through a rear door and told the man to brace himself while he worked to unfasten the seatbelt.
“Finally it gave in, and I slowly set him down and then pulled him out,” he said. By then, an off-duty police officer had stopped and helped them sit down on the side of the road on some cushions.
“I kind of sat there thinking, ‘What the heck just happened?’ as help came,” he said. Eventually, he drove home.
“I kind of went home and hugged my mom and dumbed down the whole story because she would have had a heart attack,” he said.
“He was overwhelmed with being in the moment,” said his mother, Linda Delaney. “I think this experience has helped him to appreciate life a bit more. This moment will last him a lifetime.”
CHP Officer Cox said the man was taken to a hospital for his injuries. The man declined to comment for this story.
Cox added that he told Delaney at the scene that it would have been safer to pull in front of the wreckage instead of dashing across the road.
“Some people get hurt trying to help,” he said.
Cox said he was impressed that Delaney stopped and helped.
“It’s a lot more than most people do,” he said.
Photos courtesy of Jeff Delaney. Bottom photo shows Delaney, right, and teammate Nick Silvers.
A year ago, 18-year-old Brian Goldstone was a senior at Corona del Mar High School. Today, he’s a history major on the premed track at Emory University in Atlanta, working with a partner on a new, faster way to test for the Ebola virus.
“The first day of biology class, the first Ebola patient (in the United States) was transferred here and was driven right past campus,” Goldstone said. “It all felt very close.”
The next day, his biology professor offered extra credit on her first quiz of the semester to any student who came up with an idea for a better Ebola test.
Goldstone and his friend, freshman Rostam Zafari, worked together and ultimately came up with the concept of REDS — Rapid Ebola Detection Strips. The strips, analogous to those commonly used in urine tests, would allow for testing outside of hospitals and in theory could lead to quicker diagnoses.
“Anyone could use them,” Goldstone said. “You could test them on someone on board a plane and know before it landed if the person was positive.”
The two students talked to other professors and went to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, located in Atlanta near the Emory campus. There, they connected with immunologist Justine Liepkalns, who is working on the project, although not in an official CDC capacity.
To take their idea further, they launched an online fundraiser that ran from Sept. 12 to Oct. 12, raising $14,605, $105 over their goal.
“This kit is intended to be portable and user-friendly, allowing African families to receive EVD (Ebola virus disease) detection screening in the village setting,” their fundraising page states. “Additionally, REDS is designed to test for EVD before symptoms even occur, which would allow for the identification, separation, and treatment of the infected, thereby containing the virus.”
Current testing procedures, the page states, “include Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) which can run (repeated) assays for small cost.”
However, initial PCR quipment costs range from $10,000 to $100,000, the page states, and since “Ebola is most concentrated in areas of the lowest socio-economic climate, these costs are significant obstacles for detection of the virus.”
“Furthermore, these machines cement the process of detection to the hospital, as they are expensive and require electricity,” the page states. “Many people infected with Ebola die before reaching these hospitals. Some even refuse to go since hospitals are often associated with death in Western Africa.”
Having raised more than $15,000, Goldstone said, the team is ready to create a strip prototype. The team will obtain deactivated viral proteins, Goldstone said, and perform their own work in a lab to look for “certain key characteristics.”
The next step would be to send the prototype to agencies that work with Ebola, Goldstone said.
“We plan on licensing it to a biochemical company, so it can be used most effectively and efficiently,” Goldstone said.
They hope ultimately to make a profit from the project, he said.
“But we’re mainly doing this to help people,” Goldstone said, adding that he and zafari are social entrepreneurs and live in a dorm focused on social entrepreneurship.
Goldstone said he plans to be a doctor, like his father, and that he’s had medical internships. Currently, however, he’s a history major.
“I like to mix it up a little,” he said. “I also believe if you know history, you can avoid making the same mistakes as those in the past.”
Goldstone said Advanced Placement U.S. History, taught by Laura Mayberry, was his favorite class at CdMHS, and Mayberry said she was thrilled when he told her he would major in history.
“Brian has always dreamed of being a doctor and serving others,” Mayberry said. “Despite his love for medicine, he has always been interested in and had a talent for history. He’s never been the type of young person to wait for things to happen but rather to jump in, roll up his sleeves and make the changes happen.”
CdMHS Principal Kathy Scott said she too was proud of Goldstone’s accomplishments.
“His willingness to do this intensive research during such a critical time in our world and at such a young age is a testament to his maturity and intellect,” she said in an email.
As for the extra credit on that first biology quiz?
“Yes,” Goldstone said. “We got extra credit for it. And then we took it further.”
Photo courtesy of Goldstone and Zafari.