“Love Grows By Giving” Wine Tasting Supports Youth in Crisis

"Love Grows By Giving"  Wine Tasting Supports Youth in Crisis 5

More than 500 wine lovers and Community Service Programs’ supporters gathered at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort and Spa to enjoy unique wines and food pairings from local restaurants. Event proceeds benefited CSP’s Huntington Beach Youth Shelter and its emergency and therapeutic programs.

Christmas Boat Parade Awards Dinner and Auction

Christmas Boat Parade Awards Dinner and Auction 9

The 108th Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade Awards Dinner recognized the Boat Parade and Ring of Lights winners at its 300-guest dinner at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach. Hosted by the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, the event’s proceeds were delegated for next year’s gala awards dinner.

Hope & Help for Autism

Hope & Help for Autism 5

The Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders hosted its second annual Hope & Help Gala at The Resort at Pelican Hill. The sold out event netted $347,439 to benefit the Center’s services. “It was incredible to see the continued support from families and friends,” Executive Director Catherine Brock said.

Let’s Travel!

Let's Travel!

I’ve always enjoyed traveling, whether in the U.S. or abroad. My first experience over the “big pond” (Atlantic Ocean) was a year out of college, when I decided to go to Europe (I have no idea where that came from–I was from Indiana and had never flown on a plane!). So, I flew to London and joined 48 people I had never met before and spent three weeks in eight European countries. It was a hoot and literally changed my life! I took up reading voraciously about European history and have never stopped doing so. Next came three trips to Europe over a 12-year period singing with the Master Chorale of Orange County (later the William Hall Master Chorale) in cathedrals and churches throughout Europe. A riverboat excursion down the Danube through Vienna, Budepest and Prague was informative and engaging, as was a month in Asia visiting eight countries. My husband and I never ate American food the entire time. It was a wonderful experience! And, a trip to Athens, through the Greek Isles and on to Istanbul was a standout. There were other trips as well, with many right here in the good ole USA!

Extending an Olive Branch

Extending an Olive Branch 2

Fashion Island celebrates its fiftieth anniversary this year. The open-air shopping center houses high-end boutiques and department stores. But, the real draw these days are the impressive array of restaurants housed within it. A diner can easily travel the world without leaving Newport Beach’s borders. A jaunt to Japan with an omakase at Sushi Roku, a taste of Mexico a la Rick Bayless’s Red O, or a frankfurter from the quaint Gourmet Hot Dog Cart, then return to the states with a burger from Café R&D. Then, there is Fig & Olive–an expansive Mediterranean-inspired restaurant that transports you to Founding Chef Laurent Halasz’s childhood home in the South of France.

“That’s The Spirit” Raises Funds for Vets

"That's The Spirit" Raises Funds for Vets 4

Committed to helping veterans find employment through its VetNet program, Working Wardrobes’ annual gala, themed “That’s The Spirit,” raised significant funds for the cause. Held at Mission San Juan Capistrano, the 300 guests enjoyed Spanish-themed cuisine, a professional salsa performance, tempting auctions and dancing under the stars.

Girl Scouts of Orange County’s Seventh Annual Celebrate Leadership Event

Girl Scouts of Orange County’s Seventh Annual Celebrate Leadership Event 5

Seven outstanding female leaders and Girl Scout alumnae were recognized at the Island Hotel fundraiser for more than 250 guests, netting $225,000 for local Scout programs. Each honoree was paired with a Girl Scout, who created a unique art piece illustrating the woman’s leadership characteristics. Photography Laurel Hungerford

A Safari Unlike the Others

A Safari Unlike the Others 6

A trip to South Africa is a dream for most, and, usually, that dream involves the inclusion of a safari. And, why wouldn’t it? An African safari is by far one of the most incredible experiences an adventure traveler can have in their lifetime. Nothing can compare to witnessing majestic creatures in their natural habitat, where they are free to live the way they were intended to live while those who go to see them are just temporary guests in their wild home. What a majority of travelers headed to South Africa tend to do is book a safari that is based out of Kruger National Park. Kruger is an amazing national park, located in northeastern South Africa. It is one of the biggest and most popular game reserves. The Big 5 (lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalos) can all be seen there, as well as diverse species of birds, such as vultures, eagles and storks. Beyond the wild animals, what most visitors to the park will also see are hoards of other tourists there to see the animals, taking away a bit of the authenticity of the experience and making it feel more like a circus side show, something it most definitely is not. With all the tourists zipping by in their jeeps, the specialness of being in the wild is greatly diminished.

April 2017 Around Town

April 2017 Around Town 1

Kudos to Keith Hancock, ’02 and M.A. ’04, who was recently named Grammy Music Educator of the Year, along with being presented a $10,000 honorarium, at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards. Under Hancock’s leadership, Rancho Santa Margarita’s Tesoro High School choirs grew from a single class into an award-winning program with more than 200 singers, who have toured Europe, performed at Carnegie Hall and at the 2012 and 2016 American Choral Directors Conventions. Chapman.edu

Upscale Coastal California Living

Upscale Coastal California Living 7

Looking for a property that indulges your senses, resurrects the soul and meets all your expectations of an upscale coastal California lifestyle? This property can touch both your heart and your mind.
At the exclusive guard-gated community of The Strand at Headlands, a new custom-built modern masterpiece at 43 Beachview Avenue in Dana Point is poised with approximately 7,000 square-feet of interior living. The home was constructed utilizing steel framing allowing for fewer walls, and an abundance of glass with larger windows, altogether forming an open concept to maximize the endless ocean views from every area of the home. Enjoy the best panoramic ocean, coastline, Catalina and sunset views that Orange County has to offer.

Go Deeper, Go Bigger

Go Deeper, Go Bigger 6

Since it’s inception in 1999, the Newport Beach Film Festival has remained dedicated to bringing the best in classic and contemporary film to Orange County. Now the age of a high school senior, the Newport Beach Film Festival has matured into one of the top film festivals in the country.

The Beauty of Cuba

The Beauty of Cuba 3

The best way to approach Cuba is to resist understanding it and just enjoy it. The most apparent contradiction is the juxtaposition of old and new. While most of the country has not changed in 60 years, half the buildings are in disrepair and seem uninhabitable. Yet, the grandeur of pre-Revolution Cuba is visible on the exteriors. Most of Havana’s buildings date from the 1800s, and their ornate facades recall 18th century Europe. Each building was once a vibrant color and featured grand marble staircases, intricate ironwork, high ceilings and plantation shutters. When driving through town in a mint condition crimson 1951 Buick convertible, it is easy to imagine Havana in its heyday.

April 2017 Culinary Creations

April 2017 Culinary Creations

Spice up your dinner table with this exotic, easy dish which can utilize all the vegetables from your garden or the local farmer’s market. Throughout the world, diners are embracing the “farm-to-table” movement, and restaurants are responding by modifying their menus to offer more locally grown fruits and vegetables. Termed “paddock-to-plate” in Australia, the focus remains the same, integrating more awareness on healthy, fresh menu options and sustainability. Even high-end restaurants are offering produce from their own gardens, as evidenced by the sign at Aire Valley restaurant in Victoria, where the menu reminds diners: “While you wait, your vegetables are growing.”

A World Apart

A World Apart

Everything you’ve heard about Dubai’s unbridled extravagance is true. Well, at least most of it is. (I’d been told that most taxis I’d hail would be Mercedes and with luck even Lamborghinis. Turns out, that wasn’t quite true.) However, this city–technically an Emirate–perched on the Persian Gulf is considered the most expensive in the Middle East. It is the flashiest sister of the United Arab Emirates, where the moneyed class from around the globe comes to experience the best and often brashest aspects of modernity.

A Sacred Calling

A Sacred Calling 3

They are clothed in the white habit of their order–a beautiful sign of their inner identity and consecration. The Norbertine Fathers of St. Michael’s Abbey in Silverado Canyon go about their sacred duties, as they serve in schools, hospitals, and prisons throughout southern California.

Sailing Into Spring

Sailing Into Spring

For me, Spring is indeed my most favorite time of the year. The strawberries are bursting with flavor, gardens are in bloom, the weather is warming and the days are longer.
A fun local April happening is the annual Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race, which this year will proudly celebrate its 70th year. Yes, this event began here in 1947. Each year, race participants, crews and their families arrive days ahead in preparation for the race. And, the bonus is they also can spend time in our wonderful slice of coastal heaven here in Newport Beach. The Newport Ocean Sailing Association (NOSA) is anticipating more sailors will enter the race than they’ve seen in recent history.