Autumn conjures up images from my childhood, as I grew up in Indiana. The Midwest always started getting cooler in October, and the leaves blossomed into bright yellows, oranges, browns and reds. It was always a sight to soothe the soul, and, I must admit, I do miss that glorious panorama living in California. I do know, however, the leaves are changing colors in the mountains of our state, so that’s why I felt justified showcasing a cover with pumpkins and autumn leaves.

October is also known as National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month, and John A. Giannone, DVM, medical director at Newport Animal Hospital, gives us some good advice about pet adoption. As a former chief of staff at two animal shelters and surgeon at a county shelter in New York, he knows what he is talking about.

Several of our many nonprofits in the county are observing special benchmarks this year. National Philanathropy Day Orange County, hosted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, is celebrating its 30th anniversary of recognizing some amazing philanthropists in our midst. You will get a kick out of NPD Founder Doug Freeman’s story of how he worked five years to get approval from Congress for President Ronald Reagan to declare it a national day of saying a collective ‘thank you’ to philanthropists around the country, and how that announcement actually turned out. Also commemorating an impressive 25-year mark is Working Wardrobes. Its amazing Founder Jerri Rosen’s tenacity, grit, passionate dedication and a smile that totally engages, has made the successful nonprofit what it is today.

Check out the Parting Thoughts feature. One of our famous Newport Beach icons is celebrating 50 years this year. Five Crowns opened on April 14, 1965, and was the fifth restaurant in the Lawry’s chain of restaurants at the time. The site was initially purchased in the 30s by a lady wanting to build a replica of an English country inn, which she named The Hurley Bell. Writer Deirdre Michalski tells the whole story, including her personal love of the place since her childhood.

Lastly, I hope you’re gearing up for Halloween, whether purchasing pumpkins to carve, creating or purchasing costumes for you and/or your children to wear, or just enjoying the kids coming to the door on Halloween night. Remember, you could visit any one of the many spooky attractions listed in our Halloween calendar.

So, enjoy the pumpkins and autumn leaves (if you’re in the mountains!) and do have some fun on Halloween!

Until next time,