Summer is here! We were celebrating Christmas just six months ago, and now we’re gearing up for summer and all it brings. For some, it means planting a vegetable garden, or if you’re not an urban farmer, you are looking forward to enjoying the wonderful produce this time of year offers.

The Manassero family has been farming in Orange County since 1922, with Dan Manassero, grandson of founder James Manassero, carrying on the family’s farming legacy through The Original Manassero Farms that he launched 40 years ago. With his wife and partner Anne, the couple works hard to provide the best in certified organic and conventional crops, plus offering the public the Manassero Farms Market in Irvine, a one-of-kind event space, produce market and gift shop. Also, along with our green theme is our story on Urban Produce’s High Density Vertical Farming, which offers an efficient, sustainable alternative to traditional agriculture, harnessing the latest hydroponic technologies in a controlled environment. Our story on UCI’s Vital Link Energy Invitational and Race4Your Future Car Show tells us how students are encouraged to create a performance engineering car model with the criteria based on how far and how fast the car can go in one hour and on $1 worth of energy, i.e. compressed gas, electric, solar, gasoline, etc.

Since July 4th is upon us, enjoy our feature story on your star spangled options to celebrate our nation’s founding, and I know you will appreciate our story on the City of Newport Beach officially adopting the 1st Battalion, 1st Marines Combat Unit based at Camp Pendleton in 2003. Assisting the troops and their families with emergency needs, community programs and social activities has established lasting friendships. And, if you’re thinking of taking a trip to our nation’s capital, our travel story on Washington, D.C. will give you some good pointers.

As to summer entertainment, the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters, both around for 80-plus years, are always a treat. And, if you looking for hidden gems to explore in the area this summer, Deirdre Michalski’s Parting Thoughts column offers some fun options.

In closing, enjoy your fresh vegetables, celebrating July 4th, Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters, and exploring your favorite spots in this lovely paradise we call home.

Until next time,

Donna Bunce, Editor