City Blood Drive Scheduled for Monday

posted: January 25th, 2015 06:06 am | 0No Comments

The City of Newport Beach and the American Red Cross will host a blood drive from 9 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. Monday in the Civic Center Community Room, according to the city’s website. Community members are welcome.

Walk-ins are welcome, or you can schedule an appointment online, using the sponsor code NBCivicCenter. You also can call (949) 439-0551.

The Civic Center is located at 100 Civic Center Drive.


CdM Today’s Top Stories This Week

posted: January 24th, 2015 12:40 pm | 0No Comments

1. The Corona del Mar dolphin topiaries’ replacements are delayed and won’t be ready for another year; read our story here.

2. The Newport-Mesa Unified School District’s website stated this week that no measles cases have been reported in the district so far; read our story here.

3. Wood fires returned to beaches this week, although the Corona del Mar Residents Association sent a letter to the mayor asking for the Council to reconsider its vote; read our stories here and here.

4. The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce held its annual Mayor’s Luncheon mixer on Tuesday; read our story here.

5. An artist who creates patterns in the sand at beaches including Big Corona State Beach said he’s been injured but will return soon; read our story here.


Chamber Mixer Scheduled for Tuesday

posted: January 24th, 2015 05:51 am | 0No Comments

The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce will host a mixer at the Pedego Electric Bikes shop on Tuesday.

The event is free for chamber members and $20 for guests and includes a ticket for a complimentary first drink and appetizers. The mixer will run from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Pedego is located at 2515 East Coast Highway, and there is parking behind the building.


High Wind Warning Issued

posted: January 23rd, 2015 06:31 pm | 0No Comments

The National Weather Service has issued a High Wind Warning that will remain in effect until 10 p.m. Saturday, according to the agency’s website.

North to northeast winds of 25 to 35 mph with gusts from 55 to 65 mph can be expected, with isolated gusts of up to 75 mph, the warning said. The winds will strengthen tonight with the strongest and most widespread winds Saturday, weakening late Saturday night.

The agency also issued a High Surf Advisory today, which will be in effect until 6 p.m. Saturday.

“A large westerly swell of 7 to 8 feet with a 17 to 20 second period will result in high surf and strong rip currents mainly along the west facing beaches of Orange and San Diego counties through Saturday evening,” the advisory states. “The swell period will lower through the beginning of next week with surf decreasing as well.”

The surf is expected to peak on Saturday, with sets up to 10 feet possible.

High tide late Saturday morning is expected to be 5.2 feet. Strong rips currents also are expected, creating hazardous swimming conditions.


CdM This Weekend: Five Great Things For Your To-Do List

posted: January 23rd, 2015 01:49 pm | 0No Comments

1. Restaurant Week — now extended to Restaurant Two Weeks — continues this weekend, with special prix-fixe menus, with lunches available for $10, $15, $20 or $25 and dinners for $20, $30, $40 or $50 at participating restaurants. Corona del Mar restaurants include El Ranchito, Cafe Jardin at Sherman Gardens, Five Crowns, Mayur, Port Restaurant, Rothschild’s, Summer House, the Bungalow (a Corona del Mar Today advertiser) and the Crow Bar & Kitchen. For a complete citywide list, including links to menus, click here.

2. Tired of winter already? Think spring! Roger’s Gardens will host “Five Design Recipes for a Colorful Spring Garden with Tracy Wankner & Kimberly Sterling” from 9 to 10 a.m. Saturday, where the horticulturists will explain and demonstrate five design choices including Low Water Garden, Butterfly and Hummingbird Garden and California Cottage Garden. Participants will get handouts with step-by-step instructions, plant names, qualities, spacing, soil prep, timing and everything you need to plan a spring garden. From 10 to 11 a.m. Sunday, Roger’s will host “Confessions of a Gardener” at the Disneyland Gazebo. The lecture is part of a monthly series of roundtable discussions about season garden topics, where you can ask questions or join a conversation about gardening issues. Muffins and coffee will be provided. Roger’s Gardens is located at 2301 San Joaquin Hills Road.

3. Crystal Cove State Park will host a guided 3-mile hike into Moro Canyon, where you can learn about plants and animals native to the park. Meet at 9 a.m. at the flagpole at the Moro Ranger Station, located inland at the School-State Park entrance. On Sunday, from 3:30 p.m. until sunset, there will be a docent-led Photography Walk that will teach how to take photos of some iconic park sites including the tunnel, cottages, waves, reflections, rocks and the sunset, with information on camera setups and compositions. Meet at the Los Trancos parking lot by the trailer. The events are free, but there is a $15 day-use fee at park lots, with a $5 hourly fee available at Los Trancos.

4. The Back Bay Science Center will host a free Community Day event at 10 a.m. Sunday, where you can tour the facility, tour the loop trail and check out the marine life, learn about education programs and public involvement opportunities, and kids can participate in hands-on activities. The center is located off Back Bay Drive on Shellmaker Island. No reservations are required.

5. Recycled Rags will host its monthly parking lot party from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, featuring refreshments throughout the day as well as discounted items on racks in the back lot. The first 25 customers will receive a coupon for $5 off any purchase of $25 or more to be used the day of the sale, and there will be a chance to win a $100 gift certificate. Recycled Rags is located at 2731 East Coast Highway. For more information call (949) 675-5553.


SCAPE Gallery to Host Artist Reception on Saturday

posted: January 23rd, 2015 11:18 am | 0No Comments

The SCAPE Gallery will host an artist reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday for Wolfgang Bloch, whose exhibition opened this week.

The exhibition, called Against the Tide, will run through Feb. 28.

SCAPE is located at 2859 East Coast Highway. For more information, call (949) 723-3406.


“Wetlands in Southern California” Program Scheduled For Jan. 31

posted: January 23rd, 2015 05:30 am | 0No Comments

The Newport Bay Conservancy will celebrate Word Wetlands Day with a symposium called “Wetlands in Southern California: Their importance, status, threats and opportunities” from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday Jan. 31 at the Back Bay Science Center.

The program costs $15 for students and members, $20 for the public and $25 at the door; for more information or to register, click here. The cost includes lunch and optional field trips.

The program will include presentations from Travis Longcore, an associate professor with the University of Southern California Spatial Sciences Institute; Dick Zembal, natural resources director for the Orange County Water District; Ian Swift, supervising wetlands biologist with the Irvine Ranch Water District; Jeff Crooks, research coordinator with the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve; Tara Faud, education director for the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy; and Shirley Detloff, past president of Amigos de Bolsa Chica.

The center is located off Back Bay Drive on Shellmaker Island in Newport Beach.


Reader Photo By Julie Garn: CdM Sunset, 1/22/2015

posted: January 22nd, 2015 05:48 pm | 1Comment


Crews Rearrange the Big Corona Fire Rings

posted: January 22nd, 2015 04:50 pm | 3Comments

Crews were moving some of the 27 fire rings at Big Corona State Beach today, part of an interim plan to bring back wood fires in Newport Beach.

The City Council voted 5-2 on Jan. 13 to allow wood to be burned in beach fire rings, first with an interim plan to return wood to 30 rings and ultimately, in a permanent plan. However, city staff said it would take about 10 days to realign the rings, or paint them, to show which rings are designated for wood and which ones for charcoal. Staff gave Friday as a deadline for burning wood, although City Councilman Scott Peotter said recently that he had enjoyed a beach bonfire already.

The rings need to be spaced more than 50 feet apart to comply with South Coast Air Quality Management District rules, and the rings had been placed more closely.

Staff asked that anyone burning wood in the rings use unpainted firewood without nails.

Read our earlier stories here, here, here, here and here.

Photo courtesy of Frank Peters


Sand Artist Vows to Return To CdM After Injury

posted: January 22nd, 2015 09:21 am | 0No Comments

An artist who creates masterpieces in the sand at Big Corona State Beach said that the circles that appeared earlier this month were indeed his work, the last pieces he created before an injury sidelined him.

Christopher Owens has been creating sand artwork for more than a decade, and Big Corona is one of his favorite beach “canvases.”

“Corona is my favorite because the view from the bluffs is phenomenal, and the sun hits it perfectly,” he said in an interview this week. “I usually show up in the late afternoon. It’s all about patterns — smooth sand versus grooved sand. It’s all about the shadows and the way the sun sets. I get into my work, and it’s really relaxing, and I look up and see a crowd taking pictures, and it makes me happy.”

On Jan. 5, Owns visited Big Corona and created circle patterns in the sand; read our story here.

A few days later, he said, he was at Crystal Cove State Park, working out plans for a new design, when he sprained his ankle.

“I was looking at the stars and stepped off a curb and rolled my ankle and landed on my knee,” he said. “It was a week and a half long setback. Hopefully, I’ll get out a couple nights this week. I’m going to be OK, and I’ll be back.”

Owens said he likes to move from beach to beach, referring to himself as a “guerrilla artist” who likes to surprise people with his work rather than announcing where and when he’ll appear.

He’s created hearts, shooting stars, snuggles, even a portrait of a woman in the sand.

“And maybe a shamrock for St. Patrick’s Day,” he said.

Read our earlier story about Owens here, and follow him on Facebook here.

File photos from February 2014