Food Styling 101: Cook It Like a Chef

 Article and Photography Jessica Roy  Creating a beautiful dish that will please a crowd or your family and friends is achievable with just a few quick tips and easy-to-follow steps. One of my beliefs is that people eat first with their eyes; therefore, I love to create food that is vibrant, fresh and, of course, delicious. Taste to me is…

Monsters Among Us

 Article Dawn Bonker  Monsters aren’t just the stuff of Halloween, swooping onto the scene in the trappings of their breed–capes, fangs, flying brooms and all the rest–then exiting stage left until next season.  “People can conjure them up like soup, with fear of the unknown a key ingredient,” says John Benitz, chair of Chapman University’s Department of Theatre in the…

2018-19 College Football Playoff Favorites

 Article Rick Gaeth  The 2018-19 college football season is fast approaching. The NCAA playoff committee has made it clear for this season that only Power Five conference teams (SEC, Big 10, ACC, PAC 12, and BIG 12) will be allowed a spot in the College Football Playoff. That leaves only a handful of teams that realistically have a chance to make…

Master Thespian Lets Loose in Irvine

 Article Helena Danovich  With 21 plays under his belt, Lovitz graduated from UC Irvine in 1979.  Inspired by his comic idols, Al Jolson and the Marx Brothers, Jon Lovitz came to UCI in the mid-70s to study acting. In September, he’ll be back in Irvine at the Barclay to offer up his personal brand of stand-up.

The Performing Arts are Flourishing!

I always love this issue, since I have an arts background and am tuned in to what is happening here in our lovely community. I have a degree in music and taught vocal music in Indiana, where I’m from, and in Fountain Valley, California for six years before, sadly, the music program was severely cut … Continued

Pacific Symphony: A 40-Year Journey

 Article Timothy Mangan  Jimmy Carter was president, “All in the Family” won big at the Emmys, disco was still popular and the Yankees beat the Dodgers in the World Series. There was no cable or cell phones or personal computers. People read newspapers, on paper, delivered by kids on bicycles. We’re talking 1978, 40 years ago.  That was also the…

Athens Culture is Intoxicating

 Article Andrea Poe  Athens is a cultured European hub. The city gets a bad rap as a place to fly into before departing as fast as possible. Perhaps that’s because the gorgeous Greek islands beckon like sirens, but, in fact, the city has an undeniably artistic soul. Here, even the shops, cafes and vibrant bustling street life have a poetic…

September 2018 Around Town

Whittier Trust Hosts Reception at Hilbert Museum Following Chapman University’s 40th anniversary of its Economic Forecast on campus at Musco Center for the Arts, Whittier Trust hosted a private reception and tour for their clients at Chapman’s Hilbert Museum, where Chapman President Emeritus Jim Doti (Forecast presenter) and his wife Lynne were presented a certificate of gratitude … Continued

TMS Opens Offices for Treatment of Depression

NewEra TMS celebrated its grand opening with a reception at its new office located at Bella Terra Medical Building in Huntington Beach. In addition, the company is opening another office in Newport Beach/Costa Mesa. The practice offers safe and effective transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) for the treatment of depression. The innovative solution represents an alternative … Continued

Sensational Offerings from our Community’s Performing Arts Titans

 Article Donna Bunce | Photography Photos Provided  The Orange County community is fortunate to be blessed with three performing arts venues that offer an amazing array of cultural offerings.  The oldest, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, was launched in 1986, and is today one of the country’s major performing arts centers. Celebrating its 32nd season, audiences will enjoy everything from…

Sixth Annual “Priceless” Luncheon Addresses Human Trafficking

 Article Donna Bunce  Dr. Sandra Morgan, Vanguard University’s Global Center for Women and Justice (GCWF) director, is on a mission. Her passion is to eradicate human trafficking. With a pediatric nursing background, Morgan began her anti-trafficking work in Athens, Greece in 1994 by serving on the board of the Athens International Nurses Association. After returning to the U.S., she volunteered…

WHW Celebrates 25 Iconic Years

WHW, which provides the unemployed and underemployed the skills and resources they need to get and keep a good job, celebrated 25 years at its annual luncheon and fashion show (by WHW’s retail store, Deja New) at Pasea Hotel in Huntington Beach. With an “old Hollywood” theme, many of the 400 guests participated, with $197,000 … Continued

Serious Fun Gala Honors Longtime Supporter

Kate Duchene was presented the Dove Award for her dedication to breaking the cycle of domestic violence by Human Options, a nonprofit dedicated to that mission. Held at the Balboa Bay Resort, 325 supporters enjoyed a Tahitian Nights-themed evening, which featured a performance by the Muana Neui School of Polynesian Dance and helped net $328,000 … Continued

Rivals Cup Inaugural Golf Tournament a Sell-Out

Kure It Cancer Research's inaugural golf tournament drew a full contingent of golfers to Pelican Hill Golf Club for a great day of golfing followed by an awards banquet and auction. Competitive UCLA and USC alums vied for the trophy, which went to USC. The effort netted more than $135,000 for underfunded cancer research. Photography … Continued

Tennis Classic Brings Out Record Crowds

The 57th Annual Roy Emerson Adoption Guild Tennis Classic, held at multiple venues over Memorial Day weekend, drew record crowds and raised monies for Holy Family Services’ foster and adoption services. Australian-born tennis champion Roy Emerson shared a bit of tennis history and of his lifelong love of the sport during the winners’ presentations. Photography … Continued

Community Leaders Excel in Raising Awareness and Money for LLS

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Orange County Inland Empire Chapter held its Grand Finale gala at the Irvine Marriott for 300 guests to announce the winners of the 2018 Man & Woman of the Year. Six exceptional community leaders raised money and awareness for and about blood cancers, helping raise $533,224 for the cause. Photography … Continued

Women’s Philanthropy Fund Breakfast Welcomes Basketball Great

More than 920 guests attended the 15th Annual Women’s Philanthropy Fund Breakfast at Hotel Irvine, raising funds to support initiatives targeting education, health, housing and income challenges facing women and children in Orange County. With Earvin “Magic” Johnson as keynote speaker and students from Paul Revere Elementary dancing, it was an event to cherish. Photography Steven … Continued

Rolling on the Rhine

 Article David Duran  U by Uniworld is the first river cruise dedicated to a new generation of adult travelers, with a hip, stylish look and feel that offers immersive experiences along the world’s most popular rivers. Itineraries focus on longer stays in destinations, allowing guests to connect with local people, experiences and each city’s vibrant nightlife. The U fleet offers…

Bringing the Doggies Out

 Article Jessica Roy | Photography Jessica Roy, Ana Launes  Stepping out into the California sun to enjoy great food is a must. Being able to make it a family outing by bringing your kids and pets could make it even better. Newport Beach houses three particular kid-and-pet-friendly locations we must mention. These restaurants not only offer delectable California fare, they…

Dr. Peter Smrecek, DDS Welcomes Daughter to Practice

 Article Randy Harding | Photography Ana Launes  Dr. Peter Smrecek, DDS, graduated from dental school in 1977. He spent three years in the Navy Dental Corps and has practiced dentistry in the Irvine/Newport Beach area of Orange County for the past 38 years.  Looking to follow in her father’s footsteps, Dr. Smrecek’s daughter Jaclyn, graduated from University of the Pacific,…

Giving Back Through Education

 Article and Photography Ana Launes  There are many ways to give back to the community by contributing to various causes, but one of the most powerful ways is through education. Educating your family, especially your children, with regard to pet care is an integral part of that education. Our pet experts agree that a family who disciplines and cares for…

Footloose on Campus…and in the Streets

 Article Donna Bunce  It was a unique opportunity for Chapman University dance students to blur the lines between performer and viewer as they executed brief high-energy numbers around campus and in a nearby intersection during an afternoon flurry of performances.  The dancers’ stages were a crosswalk, an art museum and an outdoor sculpture. Motorists, pedestrians and onlookers became instant audiences. The…

Icons and Rising Stars

 Article Helena Danovich  The Barclay's 2018-2019 season with artists who have collectively amassed such a great number of high caliber awards and nominations is a fabulous feat.  Procuring award-winning artists is a challenging task for any performing arts venue; curating a single season with artists who have collectively amassed such a great number of high caliber awards and nominations is indeed…

Pets Rule!

 Article Donna Bunce | Photography Ana Launes  We’ve included some community people in our feature on pets and kids to show how important pets are to family life. Whether dogs or cats - canaries or turtles - it is evident that their addition brings joy to the families who take them in.    

‘Living the Life of Riley’

 Article and Photography Deirdre Michalski  I didn’t really plan it this way when I first got our puppy 12 years ago. Like motherhood, I started out with the best of intentions. I cuddled our new bundle of joy and took him to behavior classes and slowly introduced him to other dogs. It all started out so well. I am of Irish…

Welcome to our Pets and Kids Issue!

Can I tell you how much I love our kitties? Doug and I have two adorable cats, both rescues, who are the delight of our lives. Katie, an orange and white long-hair (see her pictured), and Frankie, a beige tomcat with blue, blue eyes (that’s why he’s called Frankie, after Sinatra!). Unfortunately, he wouldn’t sit still … Continued

August 2018 Around Town

Comedy Pet Theater Coming to The Barclay Comedy Pet Theater Coming to The Barclay Popovich Comedy Pet Theater is a blend of the unique comedy of Gregory Popovich, award-winning star of the Moscow Circus and champion juggler, and the extraordinary talents of his performing pets. Popovich and his cast of over 30 gifted animals, all … Continued

Latin-Inspired ‘Life Without Limits’ Gala

United Cerebral Palsy of Orange County held its annual "Life Without Limits" gala with Tarek El Moussa of HGTV's popular Flip or Flop as guest host and with 2018 American Idol finalist Effie Passero entertaining. The 300-guest, Latin-themed benefit honored longtime supporter Scott Pievac as the individual Impact Award recipient and loanDepot as the Corporate Impact recipient. 

“Brighter Futures Luncheon” Brings Awareness

Laura's House held its third annual "Brighter Futures Luncheon," with 220 guests helping net $86,000 to help with domestic violence-related services. The keynote speaker was Cyber Cop, Clayton Cranford, who spoke on cyber safety. The Girl Scouts of Orange County and budding advocate and philanthropist Ali Shimabuku were honored for their support of the Laura's House mission. Photographer … Continued

Prominent Film Industry Women Featured

Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts held its 19th Annual "Women in Focus" luncheon and conference at Dodge with five??? of the film industry's most prominent women leading a panel discussion for 400 luncheon attendees and Chapman students. Featured were Dorothy Fortenberry, Amanda Barclay, Bonnie Pan, Rachel Skidmore, and Winnie Kemp. Photography Tony Lattimore, Olivia Dom

“Women of the Year Awards”

The 24th Annual "Women of the Year Awards" luncheon, hosted by Orange County Business Journal at Hotel Irvine, honored five remarkable women: Patty Avielo, President, New American Funding; Sheng Wang, Chief Technology Officer, AutoGravity; Shelly Hoss, President, Orange County Community Foundation; Nicole Suydam, CEO, Second Harvest Food Bank; Joni Rogers-Kante, Founder/CEO/Chairwoman, SeneGence International, Inc. Photography Laurel … Continued

Special Olympics Orange County Celebrates 50 Years

The "Heart of a Champion" gala celebrated Special Olympics Orange County's 50th anniversary and lauded its late Founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver. Honorees included NFL Hall of Famer and longtime Special Olympics supporter Vince Ferragamo, who was awarded the nonprofit's inaugural Hall of Fame Award, and Rebecca Nerney, honored as Outstanding Athlete, with the Betty Belden Palmer Award. Photography … Continued

Art Shines at Balboa Island Artwalk

The 24th Annual Balboa Island Artwalk, held on a beautiful sunny day in May, showcased talented artists and marked the start of Balboa Island's summer season. Held along the South Bayfront Promenade, 100 artists were featured exhibiting paintings, sculpture, blown glass, fine and fashion jewelry, and photography, with performing musicians entertaining along the way. 

“Hamilton” Finale for Arts & Business Leadership Awards Dinner

Segerstrom Center for the Arts' Fifth Annual Arts & Business Leadership Awards Dinner served the carrot on the stick as its finale – tickets to the Tony Award-winning "Hamitlon" at Segerstrom Center. The dinner, held at Samueli Theater, honored Samuel Tang with the Rising Star Award and Moti Ferder with the Distinguished Leader Award. Photography Doug Gifford, … Continued

Hot Summer Happenings

 Article Donna Bunce  There are no lack of options for fun summer happenings in our community. Whether enjoying the 2018 Vans US Open of Surfing competition in Huntington Beach, the world-renowned Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters in Laguna Beach or celebrating our nation's founding on July 4th through planned events at Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina or watching…

Mixology Renaissance

 Article Chef Jessica Roy  Cucumber Orange Cooler  A perfect summertime recipe calls for sunglasses, great weather, and, of course, a great cocktail. Here at the Renaissance, we have an amazing beverage program that showcases “hand crafted cocktails made with freshly squeezed juices and house made syrups,” says Kevin Goodchild, our Director of Beverage and Food. Our cocktails are a reflection of…

Making a Difference

 Article Dawn Bonker  At Chapman, graduates don’t just earn diplomas, they also leave legacies big and small on campus and beyond.  At Chapman, graduates don’t just earn diplomas, they also leave legacies big and small on campus and beyond. Here, we introduce a few of the many from the Class of 2018, whose contributions made the world a little bit…

Royal Hen: A Local Seaside Gem

 Article Jessica Roy  The Royal Hen, nestled into the idyllic village-esque location on Balboa Island, offers vivid red iron gates that draw you into a stylish bistro-like space that has the feel of a classic English countryside. A perfect spot for a night out, Royal Hen greets you with hospitality and welcoming service as soon as you walk through the door.…

A True VIP Experience

 Article Randy Harding  One of the great things about being a VIP at The Gardens is that you might have the chance to play for a while with one of your favorite celebrities or an Academy Award-winning producer like John Landau.  There’s a new place to hang out and have some fun in Orange County. The Gardens Casino, located in…

America’s Patriot City

 Article Andrea Poe  Long before Tom Brady’s winning team became synonymous with Boston patriots, this city on the banks of the Charles River was a hub for men and women of action. In 1630, Puritans established a foothold along the harbor and 150 years later the American Revolution was launched. Our country's history is wrapped up in this remarkable city along…

July 2018 Around Town

Gingers Honored at Guilds Fundraiser The Guilds of Segerstrom Center for the Arts took their annual fundraiser to Balboa Bay Resort for an “Afternoon on the Bay: Celebrating Creativity and Arts.” Toni and John Ginger were honored for their heartfelt support of the Center, as John recently completed his term as Board Chairman, and an Inspiration … Continued

Kudos to Reader’s in the Outfield

 Article Ana Launes | Photography Tony Lattimore, Ana Launes  The Literacy Project (TLP), founded by Sue Grant, is a non-profit organization which provides a solid foundation of English skills to second grade students suffering from a “literacy gap,” as the organization calls it. The non-profit offers a reading program used in classrooms across Orange County, Long Beach County, Los Angeles and Coachella school districts.…

Iconic Newport Estates Available This Summer

 Article and Photography  Writer  Carol Lee

Twenty-Five Years of Wild & Crazy Tacos

Share Our Selves' (SOS) 25th Annual Wild & Crazy Taco Night drew 650 guests to its Costa Mesa campus to sample delicious tacos from 23 local chefs. The popular fundraiser netted $82,800 to support the SOS Food Pantry to help feed Orange County residents at risk of going hungry. Photography Andy Templeton

Newport Beach Film Festival Celebrates 19 Years

Featuring more than 350 films from 50 countries, the 19th Newport Beach Film Festival opened with the West Coast Premiere of Sundance hit, "American Animals," and proceeded during its eight-day run to also present nightly special events, red carpet galas, conversations with renowned filmmakers and international spotlight events and seminars. Celebrity attendess and festival honorees were the … Continued

A Salute to Barry Hoeven

A reception in Newport Coast was held celebrating the vision of the late Barry Hoeven, who founded Kure It Cancer Research 10 years ago to raise funds for research for underfunded cancers. More than 130 friends and supporters gathered to honor Hoeven's legacy and commit to his goal of donating $1 million a year to cancer research. Photography Reggie Ige

The Follies Fun Continues

CHOC Follies' 21st annual original musical production featuring 85 volunteer cast members showcased a toe-tapping "Footloose Follies" theme this year. The four performances, held at the Robert B. Moore Theater in Costa Mesa drew 2,150 attendees and netted more than $710,000 for CHOC Children's KidsCare Fund. Photography Michael Munson and Robert Rooks

The Literacy Project’s Fourth Annual “Readers in the Outfield”

The Literacy Project (TLP) and Angels Baseball came together to honor 100 students from schools in Anaheim and Santa Ana, who recently graduated from TLP's reading program. The kids enjoyed a hot dog lunch at Angel Stadium's Lexus Diamond Club, where they showed off their new reading skills to volunteers, sponsors and Angels Baseball alumni. Photography Tony … Continued

Summer Is Here!!

I always love the lazy, and sometimes hazy, days of summer! Sometimes it takes getting into July to get those warm, sunny days, but they always come. The summer brings some amazing events to our doorstep. Four of them are featured in our Hot Summer Happenings feature. You may have guessed that the Festival of Arts and … Continued

OC Fair On Stage

 Article Ana Launes | Photography Provided  Another fantastic summer at the OC Fair is upon us and with it the opportunity to enjoy the great performances of the 2018 Toyota Summer Concert Series at Pacific Amphitheatre.  Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, Thursday, July 12, 8:00 p.m.