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Trailblazing Social Ecologist Changed Treatment of Juvenile Delinquents

  Margot R. Carlson, a long-time Laguna Beach resident, died July 23, 2015, after a brief illness. Carlson, 85, held the role of executive director of Community Service Programs since 1986 and continued to support victims, shelter children, counsel families, and educate...

Fire Code Thwarts Dream Home

Five years after purchasing what he had been assured was a buildable lot in Canyon Acres, Jae “Randy” Song finds he must either give up his dream of building a home on the property or risk his family’s financial stability by suing the city of Laguna Beach. The...

Residents Explore Changing Downtown

“Do you think this preliminary idea for Cliff Drive merits further exploration?” reads a poster taped to a wall. Hand-written yesses filled the relevant column underneath the query, while the “no” and “maybe” columns remained pristine. The...

School Hiring Sets a Record, Yields Complaints

Hiring a record 10 new teachers was approved by the Laguna Beach Unified School District board in a special meeting and has prompted a flood of disgruntled calls, said board members. Considered one of the largest one-time hires in district history, all of the new teachers come...

Stand Up Paddle Rules Under Scrutiny

A year-old ordinance regulating commercial stand-up paddleboard operators has yielded frustrations for city enforcement officials and SUP operators alike. The former complain of overtaxed lifeguards and legion code violations, while the latter claim persecution by overzealous...

‘Orange Sunshine’ Explores an Often Forgotten Era

By Richard Chang, Special to the Independent Books lead to movies all the time, but it’s rare when a book inspires an art exhibition. That appears to be the case with the newest group show at Coastline Art Gallery in Newport Beach. “Orange Sunshine and the Mystic Artists,...

Art, Surf Lovers Suffer Storm Losses

Tropical moisture from Hurricane Delores that drenched Laguna Beach over the weekend rained out the Sunday production of the Pageant of the Masters, only the third cancellation since 1933. City rain gauges at Main Beach and Top of the World estimate the storm dropped between a...

Special Olympics Torch Lights Up the Town

A relay team of more than 40 people bearing a torch lit in Athens made its way through a mile of Laguna Beach on Monday. The runners – four athletes and 37 law enforcement personnel drawn from all points — received a warm reception from Mayor Bob Whalen and police Chief...

Biking at 10,000 Feet

Laguna local Hans Rey and Austrian champion trail biker Tom Oehler explored the rough and remote Guatemalan Highlands riding trails at an elevation of 10,000 feet in January. The hut-to-hut trip took the adventurers to the homes of some previous recipients of bicycles distributed...

Retrospective Revels in Local Lore of a Certain Era

Bill Ogden has often been labeled a “surf artist,” but judging by a current exhibition of his works at the Laguna College of Art and Design gallery, that oversimplifies an artist skilled in many mediums and genres. Titled “The Art of Bill Ogden,” this first solo exhibition...

Horse Lovers Sponsor Stable Tour

Laguna Beach Horse Lovers hosts a behind-the-scenes tour Sunday, July 26, from 3-5 p.m. of stables in San Juan Capistrano. “We put together a fun, free event for families and individuals to spend time appreciating each other, horses and the outdoors. Laguna Beach Horse Lovers’...

Council Opens Tap on Water Reuse

With residents hauling buckets to their yards with water captured in warming showers and state parks and beaches this week turning off their outdoor showers, the City Council Tuesday approved more citywide water conservation measures, including a temporary moratorium on new pool...

Young Teacher Learns Their Language

  Not far from the town’s center, men waiting for work congregate at the day labor hiring area on Laguna Canyon Road. This summer, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 17-year-old Shira Alcouloumre also joins them. Shira and her brother, Aaron, began involvement with the center...

Braving a Catalina Crossing

  Tom Hale aims to swim from Avalon on Catalina Island to Laguna Beach next month alongside his daughter Faith, gaining a little recognition for his adopted hometown and accomplishing an unusual father-daughter feat. Hale and his daughter call the their relay team 33.5 Miles...
Posted On 12 Jul 2015

Human Error Led to Sea Lion Poisoning

Investigators determined that an employee’s unintentional mistake accidentally over-chlorinated a Pacific Marine Mammal Center pool in April that injured 17 sea lions and have dropped their criminal investigation, police said Thursday. Police initially suspected someone with...