Parents trying to submit registration this morning for the morning Junior Guards session crashed city computers — but if they were online today before the crash, their kids will get a coveted morning slot, an official said.
“If they had been in the system any time before 10 a.m., had pre-registered with uniform size and preselected ‘a.m.’ — they are guaranteed a spot,” said Rob Williams, Newport Beach assistant lifeguard chief.
Afternoon guard registration began Monday without problems, but parents trying to sign up this morning were unable to complete the process.
“This morning the City’s computer server crashed due to the large number of people trying to register, therefore no one was able to register,” an email sent to families today said. “After learning that the system was having technical difficulties, the registration website was taken offline to repair.”
The morning registration process now will begin on Thursday, and families will receive instructions on Wednesday about how to proceed, Williams said.
“Individuals that had selected the PM session and have not registered yet will be able to register on Wednesday, April 16th,” the email said. “Non-resident registration will begin on Tuesday, April 22nd as planned.”
The Junior Guard program, which will be celebrating its 30th year this summer, will run from June 23 through August 8. About 1,400 guards passed the swim test earlier this year, Williams said.
Last year, the morning guards sessions filled up in a record-setting 4 minutes.
A crosswalk for pedestrians across Bayside Drive at Fernleaf Avenue will be striped Tuesday, a city spokeswoman confirmed.
The crosswalk was scheduled to be added as part of a Bayside Drive project that repaved the roadway and improved sidewalks, curbs and gutters; read our earlier story here.
“The temporary crosswalk striping should happen tomorrow,” Tara Finnigan, a city spokeswoman, said in an email. “They wait about two weeks before they put in the permanent crosswalk because the materials used for paving need to set for about 14 days.”
Newport Beach parents wanting to sign their kids up for the morning session of Junior Guards will have to wait after the program’s website experienced “technical difficulties” today.
Assistant Lifeguard Chief Rob Williams said the city’s service couldn’t handle the demand.
“It crashed right as everyone hit ’submit,’” he said. On Monday, 416 guards registered for the program’s afternoon session, but the morning session is historically more in demand.
Some parents said they spent nearly 30 minutes trying to sign up guards when registration opened at 10 a.m. sharp. Last year, the morning Junior Guards session filled up in a record-setting 4 minutes; read our story here.
At 10:24 a.m., Junior Guards officials sent an email to parents explaining the problem.
“We are experiencing technical difficulties with our website,” the email said. “We are going to postpone the morning session registration for today. We want to make this process as fair as possible and we are sorry for this incovenience. Your patience is appreciated.”
Once the system is fixed, officials will announce the new registration date, which will likely be later this week, the email said.
The Junior Guard program runs from June 23 through August 8. About 1,400 guards passed the swim test earlier this year, Williams said, and organizers expect that there will be a space for everyone who wishes to participate, and that they will work with families to try to accommodate as many scheduling needs as possible.
Could the Landmark restaurant at 3520 East Coast Highway become the newest El Cholo?
According to online records for the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, El Cholo, CDM, Inc. applied for a license on April 10. The pending license is for sales at a “general eating place,” the records state, and the license was transferred from Scott and Kelly Polston, owners of the Landmark restaurant.
Kelly Polston did not immediately respond to an email seeking information for this story. In January, she said that rumors that Landmark had sold were unfounded.
Carlo Divita, chief financial officer for El Cholo, said the property is in escrow, which could close in early June.
“We’re still in negotiations,” he said. “It’s not a completely done deal.”
If the deal goes through, he said, it could be an El Cholo Mexican restaurant, but “that just hasn’t been decided.” The La Habra-based company also owns The Cannery in Newport Beach.
According to El Cholo’s website, the restaurant began in Los Angeles in 1923 as the Sonora Cafe and changed its name to El Cholo two years later. There currently are six El Cholo restaurants, including one in Irvine.
Landmark opened in 2005 and was sold to its current owners in 2012; read our earlier story here.
A Los Angeles County Fire Department arson investigators used CraigsList to track illegal fireworks to a Newport Beach house over the weekend, according to a news release. Officials also detailed a 15-year-old Newport Beach boy for possession of illegal fireworks on Sunday, the release said.
“After the Los Angeles County Fire Department (LACoFD) Arson Unit arrested an illegal fireworks manufacturer in Glendora, CA, subsequent investigation lead them to a Craigslist ad showing similar illegal fireworks for sale in the Newport Beach/Costa Mesa area,” the release said. “Undercover personnel from LACoFD contacted the seller and arranged a meeting for a ‘buy-and-bust’ operation.”
The Newport Beach Police Department, the Newport Beach Fire Department and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department’s Bomb Squad assisted, the release said.
“Within hours, these public safety agencies seized over 51 pounds of illegal fireworks from a residence on King’s Road,” the release said. Investigators also found other “destructive explosive devices” that they seized from a home on Residencia. The devices included two M-80s, four M-1000s and 20 M-5000s — also known as quarter sticks and half sticks.
The 15-year-old was released to the custody of his parents.
The Corona del Mar High School’s Make-A-Wish Club is halfway to its own personal wish — to raise $5,000 to help a sick child.
On April 26, the club will host a family fair Wish Day to try to raise the last $2,500.
“The club is hosting it, and all the proceeds will go to granting a local child’s wish,” said Sabrina Froehlich, a club member and event organizer. “The whole event is being put on my CdM’s Make a Wish club, so it is entirely student run with some help from our teacher supervisor.”
The fair, which will take place by the track at the school at 2101 Eastbluff Drive, will be based around the four types of wishes — To Meet, To Have, To Be and To Go, Froehlich said.
“To Have will have a spinning wheel with prizes, To Be will have face painting, To Go will have cultural foods, and to meet will have people in costumes,” she said. There also will be a raffle, games, pie throwing and more. Tickets for the games will be sold at the event.
“We want to make the event a huge success, and our goal is the raise enough money to grant a wish,” Froehlich said. “Each wish cost $5,000 to grant, and we already have about half of that, so our hope is around $2.500. We know that will be near impossible, and very difficult though, so our focus is not merely raising money, but providing people with information on what Make A Wish is and why it is so important to support.”
Anyone who wants to help with the event, including volunteering or donating a prize, can email cdmmakeawish at gmail dot com.
The Newport Beach Bicycle Master Plan Oversight Committee’s subcommittee to consider ways to improve safety along the trails on Back Bay Drive will hold three meetings this month, a member said in an email.
The group was formed at the April 7 committee meeting after members of the Newport Bay Conservancy sent a letter seeking input about safety issues on Back Bay Drive, which is used by motorists, cyclists, joggers and pedestrians. The letter said there have been collisions between cyclists and pedestrians, and Conservancy members said they worry that a fatal collision could occur if safety is not improved.
Committee member Frank Peters asked for the subcommittee to be formed, and he requested more than 30 days for the group to meet. But City Councilman Tony Petros said the group had 30 days only to meet and come up with safety improvement ideas.
The subcommittee’s first meeting will take place at 5 p.m. Thursday at the Civic Center, when the group will define its scope and seek input, Peters said in an email. Then, there will be an 11 a.m. bicycle ride on Saturday, meeting at Bayside Drive at Coast Highway and heading to Back Bay Drive. Finally, there will be a meeting at 5 p.m. Wednesday April 30 at the Civic Center to compile the group’s findings and draft recommendations.
1. A stretch of westbound East Coast Highway was closed most of the week between Marguerite Avenue and MacArthur Boulevard for construction of a city water main transmission pipe project. The project began last summer and should end in May with some traffic disruption but no more complete road closures. Read our stories here, here and here.
2. BOOM! It felt like an explosion, or an earthquake, but what we actually felt on Wednesday afternoon was a sonic boom. Read our story here.
3. Corona del Mar will see 50 new bicycle racks throughout town; read more here.
4. Street sweeping parking limits could be fine tuned and made shorter, a City Council member has said; read more here.
5. Corona del Mar High School’s PTA will fund a television studio on campus with $20,000 in funds from the group’s Home Tour; read our story here.