September is a month of beginnings. School begins, concert seasons commence, and the charity season launches its fundraising efforts for the fall. Several of our nonprofits in the community are celebrating significant benchmarks. Segerstrom Center for the Arts is claiming its 30th season, beginning with the appearance of the legendary Mariinsky Ballet and Orchestra, formerly the Kirov Ballet, from St. Petersburg, Russia. Share Our Selves (SOS), the nonprofit that provides compassionate service to the needy, is celebrating its 45th anniversary.

Our Giving Back feature this month lauds the efforts of Barry Hoeven, who founded Kure It Cancer Research to raise funds for underfunded cancers. Having been diagnosed with stage four kidney cancer 17 years ago, he felt raising money for research would help him as well as others suffering with the disease.

We are also featuring a group in our Hometown Heroes column, whose members display acts of heroism every day–the Newport Beach Fire Department. They are being recognized at the 18th Annual Newport Beach Fire and Lifeguard Appreciation Dinner on September 17, hosted by the Commodore’s Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce.

In case you weren’t aware, there is a new innovative natural lifestyle and treatment destination in our midst. Hälth Spa is open in Eastbluff Village in Newport, and is offering a percentage of product purchases toward a charitable cause, thanks to its philanthropic owner Heather Joseph. And, speaking of living a healthy lifestyle, take a gander of What’s Cooking and Suzette Zara’s take on healthy snacks for kids’ lunch boxes. Believe me, adults will be interested in those recipes, too!

You mustn’t miss our Good Times section, which features a variety of charity events around the county that are helping young children and adults as well. And, if you’re thinking of traveling, our feature on Peru and its Sacred Valley is interesting and intriguing. Machu Picchu is in the mix, as you might surmise, but so are some other breathtaking sites.

Happy travels, whether here or afar!

Until next time,