Town Crier: Week of May 19


Memorial Day Ceremony at Monument Point

On Monday, May 29, Laguna Beach American Legion Post 222 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5868 will conduct a Memorial Day ceremony in remembrance of their comrades who died protecting our country in all wars and conflicts. The ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at Monument Point in Heisler Park. The keynote speaker will be Vietnam veteran Colonel Robert Seitz, U.S. Army (RET).

Memorial Day is set aside by Presidential Proclamation as a day to honor all the brave men and women who have given their lives in service to our country.

Your organization is invited to join these veterans’ groups in showing your appreciation for those who have given all so that we may continue to enjoy our American way of life.

During the ceremony, many organizations place floral offerings at the Heisler Park Memorial Monument. If sending or bringing floral arrangements, please be sure the organization’s name is attached and have the flowers delivered by 9:30 a.m. No glass containers are allowed.

If planning to present a floral offering during the program, call Auxiliary member Sandi Werthe at (949) 494-6016 or [email protected]. 

Conversations with LCAD President Steven Brittan at St. Mary’s

St. Mary’s is inviting the community to a complimentary event hosting Steven Brittan, the President of Laguna College of Art + Design. The event is being held at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church on Saturday, May 27, at 4 p.m. Complimentary wine, cheese, and fellowship will be served before Brittan’s presentation.

Brittan’s discussion topic will focus on art and spirituality and how art and creativity can address global issues. We look forward to getting to know Steven Brittan better and hearing about all the exciting things LCAD has going on.

“We are at a critical moment in human history where creativity and ingenuity are needed most. It is a moral imperative for each and every one of us to rise to the occasion, to problem-solve, constructively disrupt, and innovate with the collective purpose of making the world a better place,” says Brittan in his message to LCAD.

Brittan has taught art and architecture at prestigious institutions including Columbia University, RISD, Boston Architectural College, and Harvard University, where he earned his master’s in architecture. Brittan is passionate about practice-based learning and has established multi-disciplinary collaborations with design industry partners and private art institutions for students and faculty.

All are welcome to attend. Please RSVP the total number of guests to; St. Mary’s Parish Office, [email protected], or call (949) 494-3542

Abalone Presentation at the Susi Q

In collaboration with the Laguna Bluebelt Coalition, the Susi Q is pleased to host an important presentation on the disappearance of abalone along our coastlines, including suggestions as to what we can do locally to restore the numbers of these beautiful mollusks.

Award-winning author Ann Vileisis, whose books explore our human relationship with nature, food, and the environment through history, will headline the event. Nancy Caruso of the marine education and restoration group Get Inspired will provide an update about local abalone.

“With their iconic appeal, abalone capture our attention and help us to see the crucial importance of healthy kelp forest ecosystems to all of marine life –and to the wellbeing of our planet,” Vileisis said.

The free event will take place on Tuesday, May 30, between 4 and 5 p.m. at the Susi Q Center, 380 Third Street, in downtown Laguna.

A limited number of signed copies of Vileisis’s book will be available for purchase from the author. Light refreshments will be served. Free parking underground. Register online at and click on Classes & Registration. To register by phone, call (949) 715-8105.

Historical Society’s Murphy Smith Bungalow turns 100

The Laguna Beach Historical Society invites the community to celebrate the 100-year birthday of The Murphy Smith Bungalow on Saturday, May 20, from 10 to 1 p.m. at the Laguna Beach Historical Society Headquarters, 278 Ocean Avenue (between Whole Foods and Wells Fargo). The celebration will include guided tours, freebies, birthday cake and refreshments. In addition, new members will have a choice of a free gift. 

Upcoming Laguna Bluebelt Coalition events

Laguna’s Abalone will be the central theme for several upcoming events coordinated by the Laguna Bluebelt Coalition. Acclaimed marine biologist and author Ann Vileisis will discuss her recent research and book at the Suzi Q Laguna Beach Community Center at 4 p.m. on May 30. Joining the lecture, Laguna’s “Kelp lady” Nancy Caruso, will share her ten years of abalone research and surveys. Abalone and sea life will also be prominent stars in the 12th Annual Laguna Bluebelt Photo Contest and upcoming Laguna KelpFest 2023. Register for the free event at [email protected]. More information is available on the Susi Q website.

The 12th Annual Laguna Bluebelt Photo Contest is open for submissions of images captured over the past year. The submission deadline is July 7, with an artist reception later at the Laguna College Art & Design Gallery. 

The Bluebelt Photo Contest highlights and celebrates Laguna’s Citywide network of marine protected areas connected together as a Bluebelt for sea life restoration serving as a nursery supporting regional fisheries from Dana Point and Newport Beach. Photo contest rules for submission can be found at

On June 3 at Main Beach, the 13th Annual Laguna KelpFest, sponsored by the Laguna Ocean Foundation, will celebrate and educate visitors about the important contributions Laguna’s Kelp Forests play in providing a home for sea life and mitigating the effects of climate change by sequestering carbon and shading the sea floor to cool rising sea temperatures – a necessary step in addressing sea level rise. More information about KelpFest is available at


American Legion Auxiliary Poppies Available by Donation 

The American Legion Auxiliary supports veterans organizations with donations received in exchange for the red paper poppies they distribute at this time of year. The poppy was made the Legion’s official memorial flower in 1920 and that of the American Legion Auxiliary in 1921. 

Last year, nearly $2 million was collected nationally from poppy distributions and allocated to disabled or hospitalized veterans. Your donation to American Legion Auxiliary Unit 222 makes it possible for them to continue to support veterans’ projects including those at V.A. Hospitals, the Bob Hope U.S.O. at John Wayne Airport, as well as helping Camp Pendleton families and our troops overseas. Those who would like to receive poppies can mail a donation to ALA Unit 222, P.O. Box 517, Laguna Beach, CA 92652 or contact Sandi Werthe at [email protected] or phone (949) 494-6016.


Laguna Charm House Tour to be held May 21

The 48th Charm House Tour starts in front of the Festival of the Arts at noon. It offers an opportunity to tour four historic homes and a church, most in historic North Laguna. This area grew from an empty 1906 subdivision to a quiet neighborhood of tree-lined streets and gracious, charming homes. Ranging from early California Monterey Revival, summer cottage, early 20th Century Bungalow, Period Revival, and Midcentury Modern. These homes offer a tableau of Laguna Lifestyle and history. More information can be found at


Catmosphere Laguna Foundation At Gelson’s Laguna Beach On May 27

On Saturday, May 27, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Catmosphere Laguna cats and kittens will be featured for adoption at Gelson’s Laguna Beach location, 30922 Pacific Coast Highway.

Catmosphere Laguna Foundation introduced Orange County’s first Cat Café & Lounge. 

Catmosphere Laguna Rescue is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit feline rescue that serves Laguna Beach and the surrounding communities every day of the week dedicated to finding forever homes for homeless, relinquished, abandoned and special-needs cats and kittens. Laguna Beach has long been known and loved for its artistic community and embrace of nature in all its forms. Catmosphere Laguna Foundation enhances and strengthens that reputation in its mission to prevent cruelty to animals by rescuing, fostering, and assisting in public adoptions and awareness of the plight of homeless felines. 

Details can be found by contacting Catmosphere Laguna Foundation at (949) 619-MEOW (6369) or [email protected].

Laguna Beach Animal Shelter and Catmosphere Laguna Adoption Event Dates 2023: June 17, Aug 19, Oct. 21, and year-end holiday events. Gelson’s Laguna Beach and Catmosphere Laguna Adoption Event Dates 2023: May 27, Aug. 26, Oct. 28, and yearend holiday events.

Gelson’s Laguna Beach and Catmosphere Laguna Adoption Event Dates 2023: May 27, Aug. 26, Oct. 28, and year end holiday events.

AAUW Laguna Beach Awards $44,000 in Local Scholarships in 2023

The mission of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) is to advance gender equity for women and girls through research, education, and advocacy. AAUW Laguna Beach Branch’s 150 members hail from 15 nearby communities, extending from Huntington Beach to San Clemente. Every year, AAUWLB awards scholarships to support the education of girls and women from middle school through college graduation in these communities. In 2023, the group will award scholarships amounting to over $44,000.

Middle school girls from Laguna Beach, Irvine and Tustin are awarded scholarships to attend Tech Trek, a week-long residential STEM camp.  

High school girls from Laguna Beach High, Dana Hills High and Estancia High in Costa Mesa are eligible for AAUW Laguna Beach scholarships to assist their matriculation to community college or university.  

Undergraduate women at Saddleback College, Orange Coast College, UC Irvine and Laguna College of Art + Design (LCAD) receive AAUW scholarships to help with tuition, books and sometimes basic food and shelter needs.

AAUW Laguna Beach also supports college women students interested in leadership to attend the National College Conference for Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL), held each year at the University of Maryland, just outside Washington DC. This year AAUW Laguna Beach sponsored two students from LCAD to attend this conference, the only national conference focused on women student leaders.

AAUW Laguna Beach raises funds for these scholarships and other outreach educational activities through annual fundraisers, such as our spring Literary Luncheon, and individual donations. More about scholarships and other activities at


The Chakra Shack Plans to Celebrate the Summer Solstice With OC Locals

Metaphysical shop and spiritual community center the Chakra Shack has officially posted its sign-up roster for its annual Summer Solstice Celebration on June 21 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 976 S. Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach. This free event will be comprised of live music, a sound bath ceremony, intention setting, a solstice blessing, games, prizes, food and drink. The Chakra Shack strives to create a safe, positive experience at all of the events hosted in store for those who are part of and want to be part of the local spiritual community.

The Summer Solstice Celebration has been the Chakra Shack’s most popular and sought-after event for three consecutive years, filling the store with individuals from all walks of life.

“In beautiful Laguna Beach, California, the Chakra Shack resides in a large storefront on Pacific Coast Highway. Our motto is: Adventures in Energy Awareness and Soulful Living. And we carry these values with us as we assist the community in finding spiritual products and services to promote growth,” founder and owner Jill Templin shared.

The Chakra Shack’s experienced staff has mindfully curated all of the in-store events, including the Summer Solstice Celebration and Winter Solstice Event. This small business aims to continue creating a positive, eye-opening and community bonding experience for everyone who chooses to participate in the events and browse the shop.

More information can be found by visiting


Laguna Art Museum Programs

May 20 at 6 p.m. – Artist Panel: 2023 LCAD MFAsˆ

Join the 2023 Master of Fine Art graduates from the Laguna College of Art + Design for a panel discussion about their work and group show, Outlook/Insight: The LCAD Effect. Become acquainted with these up-and-coming artists as they complete this milestone in their education and present a selection of their work to the public. Artists include Erika Bradberry, Xinchen “Jack” Cai, Chapman Hamborg, Kayla Janes, Rupy Kaloti, Amanda Kazemi, Sumire Kudo, Jackie Nagel, Kelly Jane Smith-Fatten, Olivia Stude, Emma Yervandyan, and Kacy Yu. The panel will be moderated by Peter Zokosky, Chair of MFA Drawing/Painting at LCAD.

May 21 at 1 p.m. – LCAD Workshop: Erika Bradberry

Join recent MFA graduate from LCAD, Erika Bradberry, as she leads a workshop on contemporary landscape. Taking inspiration from the California Impressionist on view in the museum and LAM’s proximity to breathtaking views of the ocean, this workshop will let you express your creativity by teaching you the basics of landscape art. After a quick tour of the museum’s exhibitions and a trip outside, participants will learn how to simplify landscapes into basic shapes and colors. Supplies included with purchase of ticket. Children must be accompanied by at least one paying adult.

May 27 at 11 a.m. – Storytime Saturday

Bring your little ones to Laguna Art Museum for an interactive Storytime and art-making experience. Read-alouds will be supplemented with mindfulness exercises, art-making projects, or in-gallery activities that promote meaningful connections with caregivers and others. In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, this month’s session will feature a read aloud of “I Am Golden,” written by Eva Chen and illustrated by Sophie Diao, followed by a kid-friendly arts and crafts activity.

May 28 at 11 a.m. – LCAD Workshop: Amanda Kazemi

Join recent MFA graduate from LCAD, Amanda Kazemi as she leads a workshop on needle-felting. During the workshop, participants learn the basics of needle-felting while creating your very own seal. Supplies included with purchase of ticket. The workshop is intended for guests aged eight and older: all children must be accompanied by at least one paying adult.


‘Groove for Good’ at The Drake Restaurant in Laguna Beach 

The Drake Restaurant will host an elevated culinary and entertainment experience on June 6, benefiting The Drake Gives and Save The Music Foundation. The evening will feature a three-course meal curated by The Drake, complete with wine pairings, plus entertainment provided by Cueva Entertainment. The bordeaux and gold-themed evening, produced by Elite O.C. Productions, will fuse together community leaders and difference makers who are committed to making an impact locally. Immersive fundraising opportunities will be available alongside a silent auction and live auction led by auctioneer extraordinaire Zack Krone. The experience will offer valuable sponsorship opportunities that include VIP perks from table-side butler service to promotional exposure. Capacity is limited due to the Drake Restaurant’s unique footprint, and sponsorships, including tickets for the evening, are expected to sell out. Sponsorship and attendance details can be found at 


Mad Scientist of Music Coming to Laguna

Elvis Schoenberg’s Orchestre Surreal is coming to the Artist’s Theater at Laguna Beach High School on June 18, starring the Mad Scientist of Music, Ross Wright (aka Elvis Schoenberg) and featuring classical guitarist Eric Henderson. Free parking is available.

A wild and seductive orchestral ride that pushes against the boundaries of genre and dares to suggest a world stripped of those borders, the Orchestre Surreal presents radically different artistic expressions that, in Elvis Schoenberg’s world, have every obligation to collide. The result is a celebratory deconstructing of known and unknown songs with the wit and whimsy of Spike Jones and the musical complexities of Frank Zappa and a showcasing of the wackiest wacky-savant orchestra of twenty-five musicians in recent history. Local musician Phil Goff will also be featured. The doors open at 7 p.m. for VIP ticket holders and 7:30 p.m. for general admission. Tickets can be purchased here

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