The 17th annual tree-lighting ceremony at Crystal Cove State Park will take place Saturday afternoon, part of the park’s daylong “Deck the Cove” celebration of the holiday season.
The Deck the Cove activities, which are free and family-oriented, will begin at 9 a.m., according to a Crystal Cove Alliance news release.
“Throughout the day, the holiday bazaar will have hand-crafted holiday gifts for sale and the fine art show and sale will feature recognized California plein air artists with paintings featuring Crystal Cove,” the release said.
The bazaar will include free lessons on how to wire-wrap Crystal Cove sea glass to create unique jewelry and ornaments, which participants can take home free of charge, the release said.
The tree-lighting ceremony will feature strolling carolers and Santa Claus’ arrival at 4 p.m. The Beachcomber Café will provide hot cocoa and homemade cookies while guests search for a prime spot on the sand to prepare for Santa Claus’ arrival.
The main event, the release said, is the tree-lighting ceremony. Strolling carolers will be on hand, and Santa Claus will make a beachfront appearance at 4 p.m. The Beachcomber Cafe will offer hot cocoa and homemade cookies for participants waiting on the sand for Santa to arrive, the release said.
“At sunset, the Cove’s picturesque beach will be illuminated by twinkling lights and decorative ornaments on a statuesque evergreen tree,” the release said. “Décor will reflect the vintage character of the historic district’s time period between 1935 and 1955. In addition to the tree lighting, the historic district’s seaside cottages will be transformed into a seasonal display of holiday lights, vintage decorations and giant candy canes.”
“We look forward to this tradition every year because it awakens the magical history and old-fashioned holiday spirit of Crystal Cove,” said Laura Davick, founder of the Crystal Cove Alliance, in a statement. “This is an extra special time for children to get a few private beachside words with Santa about their holiday wishes.”
Parking for the ceremony is located at the Los Trancos lot on the east side of East Coast Highway. The $15 parking fee will be waived beginning at 3 p.m., and shuttles are available for $1 each way.
Proceeds from sales throughout the entire holiday season will benefit restoration, conservation and education efforts for Crystal Cove State Park and the Historic District, the release said.
The city’s Outdoor Emergency Notification System will be tested between noon and 12:15 p.m. today, according to the city’s website.
The system consists of three warning sirens connected to a control panel at the Newport Beach Police Department. The sirens have been placed so they can be heard at Big Corona Beach as well as in West Newport and along the Balboa Peninsula.
The tests will be brief and the siren will sound at a reduced level. City officials say that if an actual emergency occurs, the sirens will sound for a longer time period and at much higher levels.
The tests occur regularly at noon on the first Friday of each month.
Newport Beach firefighters responded to a report of smoke coming from the eaves of a single-family home in the 1200 block of Seadrift Drive at 12:12 p.m. today, according to a department news release.
Eight units responded, with firefighters finding signs of light smoke outside the building, the release said, and thermal imaging cameras indicated unusual heat in the attic.
“Smoke was found in the attic, although due to remodeling, some areas of the attic and roof structure were very difficult to access,” the release said. “Ceiling drywall was eventually pulled down and revealed an electrical appliance in the attic, which was producing high heat, impacting the blown insulation, which in turn caused heavy smoke.”
About 20 firefighters spent about an hour at the scene, the release said.
“They have two days to get them up,” said Linda Leonhard, president of the Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce, who attended the CdM B.I.D. meeting this morning. “What’s the deal? Usually they’re up by now.”
The B.I.D. pays about $23,000 each year with Dekra-Lite on holiday lights and decorations, which include wreathes on the clock at Marguerite Avenue and East Coast Highway as well as grapevine reindeer, lights on palm trees and a lighted tree near the dolphin topiaries.
Typically, the lights are installed after Thanksgiving but before the Christmas Walk.
Thanksgiving was so late this year, said B.I.D. board member Scott Palmer, that it likely resulted in a later installation date. B.I.D. members worried that there wouldn’t be time this year to complete the decorating before the Sunday walk.
But Stacey Jordan, an account executive at Dekra-Lite, said the lights and decorations were scheduled to be installed tonight.
“It’s on schedule,” she said. “They just took down the harvest decorations. We usually schedule to do the work before the Christmas Walk but after Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving was just really late this year.”
For the past few years, a menorah has been added in the Marguerite intersection to commemorate Chanukah. Leonhard said the B.I.D. did not add the menorah, and an email to city officials seeking who had a permit to add the menorah was not immediately returned. The last night of Chanukah was Wednesday.
Author Douglas Westfall will discuss his newest book, “Corona del Mar: My Kind of Town,” at a free event at Sherman Library and Gardens on Dec. 12.
The lecture will begin at 7 p.m. and is open to the public. Reservations are requested; call (949) 673-2261 for more information.
The event will include a discussion of the book, which tells the history of Corona del Mar.
According to an event announcement, Westfall was born in 1949 in Los Angeles and began writing history at 10 years old. He has published several historical documents over the past two decades and has lectured around the world. There will be a book signing following the lecture.
Sherman Library & Gardens is located at 2647 East Coast Highway.
The good news is that Newport Beach is a safe city. The bad news is that means residents and visitors often are so casual about security that they make themselves perfect targets for thieves — which is why the police department has launched a new crime prevention campaign aimed at making residents more aware.
At a news conference and fashion show event held Wednesday morning, the Newport Beach Police Department unveiled The Stolen Collection campaign, which features male models posing as crooks with faux stolen accessories. The tagline of each ad says “secure your valuables or lose them.”
The campaign was developed in a partnership with police and the Long Beach-based ETA advertising agency. Chief Jay Johnson said the campaign has cost $21,000 so far, with continuing costs in the future, but that taxpayers did not foot the bill. Instead, he said, the funds came from asset forfeiture procedures.
At the Wednesday news conference at the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa near Fashion Island, the police chief said that 96 percent of all crimes in the city are property crimes that cost victims $10 to $12 million a year.
“Most of the crimes are preventable,” he said. In 93 percent of cases, he said, victims have left doors unlocked and valuable items in plain sight.
“How do we get the message to the community without giving the perception we have a major crime problem?” he said. Community message boards, neighborhood watch meetings, social media campaigns and other efforts haven’t worked, police said, and some residents have been victimized again and again, never remembering to lock the doors of their cars and homes.
Last summer, the department began working with the advertising agency to create a campaign that will be used on buses, social media, at movie theaters, on door hangers and more.
The Stolen Collection campaign features six models posing as criminals, dressed in black, carrying designer purses filled with iPhones, wearing designer sunglasses. The “stolen” accessories represent the types of items typically lost in local thefts, and they are portrayed in bright, vibrants colors in each advertising spot.
At the Wednesday event, seven models were featured in a runway show, with Newport Beach Police Lt. Jon Lewis introducing each one.
“Here we have Niko,” Lewis said. “He’s mastered the runway and running away with people’s stuff…Let’s give a shout out to the owner of that sporty white import for leaving it unlocked…”
The campaign will be ongoing, with future ads possibly focusing on preventing thefts at the beach for summertime, said Jennifer Manzella, a police department spokeswoman.
City Manager Dave Kiff as well as Newport Beach Mayor Keith Curry attended the news conference/fashion show event.
Curry said that crime has dropped each year for the past four years, but working to prevent property crimes in a creative way was important.
“We love our community here and our quality of life,” he said. “We always strive to be better.”
A Las Vegas man was arrested at 11:45 p.m. Tuesday on suspicion of DUI at East Coast Highway and Newport Center Drive, according to a police report.
At the same time and location, a 42-year-old Newport Beach man was arrested on suspicion of obstructing a police officer, a report said. That man’s bail was $500.
The Las Vegas man, 38, had bail set at $2,500.
A memorial for Earl Fusselman, a longtime volunteer with the Newport Beach Police Department, will be held at 10 a.m. Friday Dec. 13, a police spokeswoman said.
The memorial will be held at Pacific View Memorial Park at 3500 Pacific View Drive in Corona del Mar. A reception will follow at the American Legion at 215 E. 15th Street in Newport Beach.
Fusselman, 96, died over the weekend; read our earlier story here. He was among the first volunteers when the department launched its volunteer program in 1998, and he logged more than 4,500 volunteer hours, working up until three weeks before his death.
Fusselman was a member of the Newport-Irvine Rotary Club and requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Rotary International.
Newport Beach police took a report of a vehicle burglary at 900 Newport Center Drive at 12:49 p.m. Sunday, according to a report. The incident, with a $700 loss, occurred between 9:30 p.m. Friday and 9:30 a.m. Saturday, the report said.
Officers also arrested a 41-year-old Newport Beach man at 1550 Avocado Ave. at 5:15 p.m. Monday on suspicion of disorderly conduct while intoxicated. His bail was $500.