A galaxy far, far away and some new Friends took center stage as LEGOLAND® California Resort announced two major additions for 2015 at the annual press conference

Permalink 11/21/14 10:34, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings, Business

Light speed ahead! LEGOLAND® California Resort continues moving upward into 2015
Record Year Leads to NEW LEGO® Friends Area and LEGO Star Wars™ Miniland Expansion

A galaxy far, far away and some new Friends took center stage as LEGOLAND® California Resort announced two major additions for 2015 at the annual press conference. General Manager Peter Ronchetti shared  the family theme park’s 2014 successes before announcing  the LEGO® Star Wars™ Miniland Death Star is arriving in time for spring break and an entirely new area, Heartlake City, based on the popular LEGO® Friends product, is opening before summer.


Holiday Snow Days + Winter Nights

“This is our tenth straight year of continuous attendance growth and much of this can be attributed to providing our guests with a fun, family environment to enjoy unique interactive experiences and create family memories,” said Ronchetti.

“In 2011 we were the first LEGOLAND in the world to open LEGO Star Wars Miniland and the success and popularity that it has had throughout the years is out of this world,” said Ronchetti. “Our guests have asked us to bring the Death Star to the experience, and we’re excited to be able to do that next year!”

Opening March 5, 2015, LEGO Star Wars Miniland Death Star spans 6-feet across and offers guests the chance to view iconic film scenes made of LEGO bricks that were filmed inside the Galactic Empire’s space station. This includes the famous trench run scene where Luke Skywalker maneuvered his X-wing fighter through the combat zone and trench to blow-up the station and its planet destroying super laser. LEGO models of Stormtroopers, a Rebel X-wing fighter pilot and an Imperial Star Ship pilot will be on display. Guests can also use their imaginations to construct their own LEGO spaceships at building stations.  LEGO Star Wars Miniland Death Star is opening just before the Park’s annual LEGO Star Wars Days happening March 7 and 8, 2015.

“With all the success we’ve had over the years, we continue to work harder than ever to outdo ourselves each year by creating attractions that immerse guests into LEGO Group’s popular intellectual properties,” said Ronchetti. “Last year we made a huge splash with the addition of the LEGO Legends of Chima Water Park presented by Cartoon Network and this year we are excited to continue that trend with the addition of LEGO Friends Heartlake City.”

LEGOLAND California is making a significant investment in LEGO Friends Heartlake City, opening summer 2015. The new area is based on one of the LEGO Group’s hottest toy lines “LEGO Friends”, which focuses on the lives and personalities of five girls: Mia, Olivia, Andrea, Stephanie and Emma. The new area invites guests to sing along with Andrea at her tour bus, stroll through LEGO horse stables, enjoy a building activity at one of the LEGO brick tables and go for a horseback ride on the carousel in Mia’s family ranch.  The adventures are endless for guests as they enjoy living like LEGO Friends for a day in Heartlake City.

The LEGO® Star Wars™ Miniland Death Star and the new LEGO® Friends Heartlake City are included in the cost of admission to LEGOLAND California Resort. For ticket prices, operating schedule and additional information, visit www.LEGOLAND.com or call 760-918-LEGO (5346).

LEGOLAND® California Resort includes LEGOLAND® California

Holiday Snow Days tickets now available! - LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium

Permalink 11/21/14 10:27, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings

Our Gift to You

November 1, 2014 - January 4, 2015!

Receive a FREE ticket to return when you visit LEGOLAND between November 1, 2014 and January 4, 2015.  Present any paid admission ticket at the Our Gift To You kiosk inside the Park, and receive a ticket to return to LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium between January 5 - March 1, 2015.*

* You must request your free return ticket on the day of your paid visit. Free tickets valid only between January 5 - March 1, 2015. Additional restrictions may apply.


Don't forget to join us for our holiday events.

Holiday Snow Days tickets now available!

As we prepare to welcome Shabbat, our hearts and minds are with our brothers and sisters in Jerusalem - Chabad Jewish Center of Laguna Niguel

Permalink 11/21/14 10:21, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Religions, Commentary

Chabad Jewish Center of Laguna Niguel

Email: chabadln@sbcglobal.net

Phone: 949-831-8475



A word from the Rabbi


Dear friend,

This weekend, Chabad rabbis (Shluchim) from around the world gather in Brooklyn for the annual international convention at the Lubavitch World Headquarters.

It is incredibly uplifting and heartwarming to see the thousands of Chabad Rabbis from around the globe representing their communities worldwide.

The energy is infectious, one can readily feel how the Rebbe's work is alive and increasing rapidly throughout the world.

The annual banquet culminating the convention will be streaming live on our website this Sunday - Click here to tune in at 2:00 PM (Pacific Time) to be a part of an extraordinary evening like none other!

With thousands of Chabad Rabbis along with hundreds of friends, partners and supporters of Chabad worldwide - the energy in the room is electrifying. It's worth the watch!

As we prepare to welcome Shabbat, our hearts and minds are with our brothers and sisters in Jerusalem.

What happened this past week in Jerusalem is beyond our understanding. Innocent fathers with large families, brutally butchered by terrorists as they were in Shul praying with their Talis and Tefilin.

For what? Simply for being Jew.

Congregants have asked me "what can I do?” I don't have all the answers, but what I do know is that we need to show ourselves and the world how proud we are to be Jewish.

We know that a little light has the power to dispel great darkness. This Friday night, thousands of Women across the globe will light the Shabbat candle.

A candle for the souls that have left their families too soon. A candle to flicker and show the world that Am Yisroel Chai. The time for candle lighting this week is 4:27pm. When you light your candle tonight, recite a prayer.

Pray for the safety of our Brothers and Sisters in the holy land. Pray for the 26 orphans and their Mothers (living on one block) that need a lot of strength to continue.

Most of all, pray for the ultimate time of peace, for the coming of Moshiach ,when there will be no war, hunger, pain and suffering anymore.

Our tears will turn to joy as we will dance together in the streets of Jerusalem, may it be speedily now!!

Wishing you a good shabbos and a happier week ahead.

Shabbat Shalom!
Rabbi Mendy Paltiel

P.S. Join us on for Shabbat prayers beginning at 10am, followed by Kiddush lunch at 12:30.



Permalink 11/21/14 10:04, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Charitable

Vets hospital 012.jpg

Elk Vickey Long, Vet Rick Rodriguez and Elk Sandie McClure



November 10, 2014, Nine members from Mission Viejo Elks Lodge brought smiles, refreshments, clothing, toiletries, lap robes and a good time to those vets who could make it down to the assembly room to share in Bingo and friendship.  The Elks Orange Coast District shares this visitation with its ten lodges, two each going to the event once a month.

Vets hospital 060.jpg

Vickey Long, Vet Romulo Torres and Vets Chairman Dennis Lumley


The veterans appreciate needed clothing and toiletries that are donated, but probably enjoy  most the company and contact of visitors that care for their well being and are willing to share time and companionship with them.

Veterans Chairman, Dennis Lumley, said that several of the veterans stopped them to say thank you for caring, thank you for coming, which is all that is needed for the Elks to come together again for the next visitation. “Elks Care, Elks Share”

Members in attendance November 10th were: Mission Viejo residents Dennis Lumley, Sandie McClure, Lloyd  & Carole Bryan, and Mark Sherling, Mike & Vicki Long of Dove Canyon, Kathy Andrews, and Daniel Hernandez of Lake Forest. Also attending was Orange Coast District Veterans Chairman Harvey Langham.


Mission Viejo/Saddleback Valley Elks Lodge #2444 is celebrating 44 years of service to Saddleback Valley Communities. It is one of 10 lodges in the Orange Coast District of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) whose headquarters is in Chicago, Illinois. The BPOE is a charitable organization with a 146 history of giving. "Elks Care Elks Share."


Andy Costello
2014-15 CHEA Public Relations Chairman
Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley Lodge #2444





The producers of DR. SEUSS’ HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS! THE MUSICAL have announced that Stefan Karl will star as The Grinch at Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Permalink 11/21/14 09:06, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: The Arts

Casting Announced for the Holiday Classic

December 10 – 14, 2014 
at Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Hailed by The New York Times as “100 times better than any bedside story,” this classic holiday musical will enchant adults and children alike when it makes its Orange County premiere December 10 – 14, 2014.

Bob Lauder returns for his fifth GRINCH tour as Old Max, and Andreas Wyder shares the stage as Young Max.

The holiday-loving Whos are played by Isabella Burke (Annie Who), Vincent DiPeri (Papa Who), Riley Glick (Annie Who), Raleigh Shuck/Aviva Winick (Cindy-Lou Who), David Thornton (Grandpa Who), Katy Vaughn (Grandma Who) and Melissa Weisbach (Mama Who).



Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Nuclear Comics & Skate Shop Celebrates 20th Anniversary at Grand Opening of New Location

Permalink 11/21/14 09:03, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings, Business

Nuclear Comics & Skate Shop is celebrating the Grand Opening of their new location in Laguna Hills with a big sale on December 5, 6, and 7.

This event will feature some big name comic artists doing signings and sketches throughout the weekend.

Artists who have appeared at past events include Drew Johnson (DC Comics), Dave Johnson (Batman), Amy Mebberson (Disney), ROCOM and Tio Lavranos. The new shop is located at 24741 Alicia Parkway, Suite J., in Laguna Hills.


December 1 marks the 20th anniversary of the opening of Nuclear Comics & Skate Shop, which just completed the move from its original location in Laguna Niguel.

In honor of the anniversary, free comics will be given out throughout the day on Saturday, December 6.

The shop boasts the widest selection of comics in all of Orange County and has regular customers coming from San Diego to Los Angeles. The shop also is a full service skateboard shop.


“We are excited to bring this unique blend of comics and skateboarding to the Laguna Hills community,’ reports owner Kenny Jacobs. “Comics have permeated so many aspects of our daily lives, from movies and television shows, and they offer something for all ages. We sell comics to everyone from business executives to families who enjoy the visual appeal of the graphic images.”


Nuclear Comics & Skate Shop also has a significant web presence on Facebook through Instagram & Twitter @nuclearcomics.


Kenny Jacobs

Fun concert features unique arrangements of holiday favorites - Laguna Woods Saturday, December 13th, 7p.m. Clubhouse 3 Theater

Permalink 11/21/14 09:00, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Schools, The Arts

Feast of Lights 2014.jpg


Big Band Holiday Jazz Concert at Laguna Woods

Laguna Woods, CA  -- The Jazz Studies program at Saddleback College is pleased to bring a new holiday tradition to Laguna Woods. On Saturday, December 13th at 7p.m., in the Clubhouse 3 Theater, the Saddleback College Big Band, under the direction of Joey Sellers, presents their Holiday Jazz Concert. This fun concert features unique arrangements of holiday favorites, and it’s a wonderful opportunity to introduce those of all ages to the great American music called jazz. This lively concert for the whole family features a sing-along, some humor, and music that will lighten the hearts for all in the theater.


Tickets are $10, $8 and $5.  Call the Laguna Woods Village Clubhouse 3 ticket office at 949-597-4288 to order tickets.


The Saddleback Big Band is a standard size big band that explores wide stylistic territory. From the great Swing Era music of Earl Fatha Hines, Duke Ellington, Fletcher Henderson through the exotic voyages of Sun Ra, the rich textures of Gil Evans to music penned moments prior to performance, this engaging ensemble always thrills. Most concerts feature a world premier combined with music of swinging historical importance. Guest artists have included Bill Holman, Ron Stout, James Moody, Jerry Pinter, Tony Malaby, Mark Helias, and Roberta Piket among others. Though the Big Band enjoys playing at its home in the beautiful McKinney Theatre at Saddleback College, they are also frequently the featured ensemble at jazz festivals and jazz venues throughout the Southland.


Located in Mission Viejo, Saddleback College provides quality higher education and training to the greater south Orange County community.  Having served more than 500,000 students since 1968, Saddleback College offers over 300 degree and certificate programs to help students reach their personal, career, and educational goals.  For more information, please visit www.saddleback.edu and for Fine Arts information, please visit www.saddleback.edu/arts.




David E. Anderson, Jr.

Director, Audience Development

Division of Fine Arts & Media Technology

Saddleback College

One lucky child selected each night through LEGOLAND California Resort’s Facebook Page will light the LEGO Christmas tree Dec. 4 through Dec. 24

Permalink 11/20/14 16:24, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings

Shine up your skates and grab your mittens! LEGOLAND® California Resort is getting its outdoor gear ready for its annual winter celebration, Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights.


Save up to $15 + 2nd Day FREE - the earlier you book online the less you pay.

The winter fun kicks off November 22, 2014 and runs through January 4, 2015 with more than 50 tons of real snow, a new ice rink, festive treats, holiday entertainment and family fun activities.

During Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights, the Park’s Fun Town transforms into a winter wonderland featuring 7-foot tall snow-covered tube runs for children to slide down and a snow-play area where families can throw snowballs at LEGO® themed targets and build snowmen using LEGO accessories.

Plus, new this year, guests can enjoy gliding on ice at the Resort’s ice rink located in front of the ticket plaza for additional fee. Park guests can also sing along with holiday entertainment including live music featuring LEGO Friends Live, Jingle Jammers, the Big Test Holiday show and the Holiday Character Dance Party.

Holiday Snow Days continues with the annual LEGO Christmas tree lighting event and concludes with San Diego’s biggest Kids’ New Year’s Eve Party on Dec. 31.

On Dec. 1, with the of help Santa and special celebrity guests, the Resort’s LEGO Christmas tree will officially light-up the night during the 12th annual Tree Lighting Ceremony.  The 30-foot tall Christmas tree is created out of more than 245,000 forest green DUPLO® bricks and is adorned with more than 400 LEGO ornaments.

One lucky child selected each night through LEGOLAND California Resort’s Facebook Page will light the LEGO Christmas tree Dec. 4 through Dec. 24.

Fireworks spark each night Dec. 26 through Dec. 31 at 7 p.m. The best view to see the festive fireworks display is in the Park’s Fun Town. Don’t miss a stroll through Miniland U.S.A which is decorated for the season with LEGO holiday scenes including Santa arriving on top of the White House in Washington, D.C.

LEGOLAND California Resort is also featuring holiday treats including hot chocolate, warm spiced apple cider, churros, holiday cookies, Bratwurst and Knockwurst baguettes, and buttery mash potatoes.

Also new this year, guests can enjoy s’more kits to roast their own s’mores over fire pits while watching everyone ice skate. All delicious treats are available for purchase throughout the celebration and s’more’s can be found by the ice rink in front of the Park’s ticket plaza.

SEA LIFE® Aquarium joins in the holiday fun with an underwater LEGO Christmas tree, holiday-themed Daily Dive Show and a ‘green’ crafting event. The LEGOLAND® Hotel is also getting in the holiday spirit with nightly entertainment, daily holiday-themed LEGO model build contests and holiday décor exclusive to Hotel guests.

New this year, guests can enjoy a paid Ultimate Snow Days VIP Experience from Nov. 22, 2014 – Jan. 4, 2015 or a VIP Holiday Breakfast Experience every Saturday and Sunday in December and every day from Dec. 21, 2014 – Jan. 3, 2015.

The celebration concludes on Dec. 31, 2014 with Kids’ New Year’s Eve, the biggest annual family-friendly party allowing kids to ring in 2014 without missing their bedtime! Like the famous ball dropping in Times Square, Kids’ New Year’s Eve rocks the night with special musical performances by Grammy-nominated artists who will count down the seconds until a huge LEGO brick drops from 22-feet in the air launching a spectacular fireworks display at 6 p.m.

LEGOLAND California Resort is extending its Park hours for the winter holiday during these dates: Nov. 28, 29, 30, Dec. 6, 13, 20 - 23 and 26 - 31.

LEGOLAND California Resort is offering a gift for holiday guests; From Nov. 1 through Jan. 4, 2015, buy a one day admission to LEGOLAND California and return a second day to LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium for free between Jan. 5, 2015 and March 1, 2015.

All Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights activities located inside the Park are included in the price of a LEGOLAND California admission ticket. Tickets for the ice rink, located between the ticket booths and LEGOLAND Hotel, are sold separately. Both VIP Experiences must be purchased separately by calling (760)-918-5398.  

For more Holiday Snow Days information, visit www.LEGOLAND.com or call (760) 918-LEGO (5346).

Adopt-A-Family program makes holidays brighter

Permalink 11/20/14 14:18, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Charitable

Photo of gifts for kidsMake the holidays merrier for some families of the City’s adopted Headquarters Battalion of the 1st Marine Division through the “Adopt-A-Marine Family” program.

The program provides holiday gifts and cheer for a specific Marine family at Camp Pendleton. The Adopt-A-Marine program is a great way for individuals, schools, organizations, businesses and churches to give back to those who serve and protect our country.

For more information, call 949-470-3061 or e-mailrecreation@cityofmissionviejo.org by December 8.




Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist



Behind-the-scenes excursion to Camp Pendleton Dec. 2

Permalink 11/20/14 14:13, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings

Marines1Marines on baseIf you’ve ever wanted to experience the life of a Marine behind the scenes, register today for a special excursion to Camp Pendleton on Tuesday, December 2.



The City’s Marine Adoption Committee is offering the public a once-in-a-lifetime adventure to Camp Pendleton for an up-close and personal look at Marine life. The excursion is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.



Cost is $20 and includes the round-trip bus ride and lunch. Space is limited, so early registration is encouraged.

For more information and to register, call Bruce Hunt at 949-457-2357.



Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist


Abandoned kitty is ready for his forever home

Permalink 11/20/14 14:11, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Charitable

hefeweizen croppedHefeweizen, a.k.a. “Hef,” was abandoned  in a cat carrier at the door of a local business.  When Mission Viejo Animal Services picked him up, he was not a happy camper but who could blame him?

After a few days at the Animal Services Center, this 2-year-old tabby began to warm up to staff.  Now, Hef is friendly and affectionate.  He loves attention and will wrap himself around your legs to get it.  He is also very active and enjoys playing with his catnip mice and pretending to be a  hunter.

Hef is ready to find a forever home, so drop by the Mission Viejo Animal Services Center at 28095 Hillcrest to meet Hef today.

For more information, visit www.cmvas.org or call 949-470-3045.

Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

Longtime library assistant set to retire next month

Permalink 11/20/14 14:08, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings

Janet SeavyLongtime library assistant Janet Seavey is set to retire next month after more than a decade working at the Mission Viejo Library.

Janet started working here in 2001 as an assistant library clerk. In that role, she worked at the front desk handling library patrons’ check out, library cards and fielding questions about services.  A year later, she began working as a passport services agent.

“Janet’s attention to detail was the perfect fit to work as a passport acceptance agent,” said supervisor Kathleen Kelton.

In 2004, Janet was promoted to mailings and transmittal duties of passports, and four years later she moved up to library assistant/passports.  Janet has been responsible for overseeing agents, training volunteers, keeping Mission Viejo’s passport office in compliance each year with the Los Angeles office, and monitoring the process and mailings of passport applications.

“At last count, since the program’s inception in 1998, the library and its agents have brought in more than $2.4 million in passport acceptance fees and $480,600 from photography services,” Kelton said. ”So far, revenue totaling $3 million has been collected by the agents.”

Along with being an exceptional employee, Janet is known by co-workers as a generous, kind and conscientious person. She also makes the best cookies and pot of coffee on the planet.

After she retires, Janet will spend time researching her family’s genealogy, making cookies for friends, volunteering and reading.


Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

Save the date for Chamber of Commerce holiday mixer Dec. 18

Permalink 11/20/14 14:05, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Business

Chamber MixerThe Mission Viejo Chamber of Commerce will host a casino-themed holiday mixer on Thursday, December 18 at the Norman P. Murray Community and Senior Center, 24932 Veterans Way.

Guests to the 5:30 p.m. mixer can enjoy blackjack, craps and roulette with play money and chips along with free refreshments from Mountain Mike’s, Paradise Cafe and Bakery and Coldstone Creamery.  Beer and wine will be available for purchase from the High Park Tap House.

In the spirit of the holidays, the chamber has teamed up with the nonprofit California Elder Care Referral Service to support needy seniors.  An angel tree will be on display for folks to select an ornament with a specific wish list item needed by a local senior.  Donors will be rewarded with extra gambling chips in exchange for each $20 donation made to the California Elder Care Referral Service.

Mixers are free for chamber members; $10 general admission.  Visit www.missionviejochamber.com to RSVP or call 949-470-8409 for more information.


Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

‘R. HERO’ Dalmatian sculpture dedication Saturday, Nov. 22

Permalink 11/20/14 14:03, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Charitable

R Hero dogThe City of Mission Viejo will host a special public dedication and unveiling of the new “R. HERO” sculpture at La Paws Dog Park on Saturday, November 22. The dedication is from 10 a.m. to noon at 25100 Felipe Road.

The 6-foot high, 150-pound purple “R. HERO” Dalmatian aluminum sculpture now sits at the entry to La Paws Park.

The sculpture is a donation from Bunni and Rick Benaron as part of The Hero In You Foundation, which honors first responders and will serve as a reminder of the sacrifices firefighters, police officers, paramedics and military service personnel make, while inspiring future generations to become heroes.

The City of Mission Viejo is home to one of 20 unique “R.HERO” sculptures across the country. The sculptures serve as public art displays at fire and police stations, children’s hospitals, children’s museums and other public venues.

Hosted by the Mission Viejo Cultural Arts Committee and Mission Viejo Friends of the Arts, the dedication ceremony will feature pet vendors, representatives from the Orange County Fire Authority and Orange County Sheriff’s Department, free refreshments and crafts for families. The public is invited.

Firefighters, police officers, paramedics and military members should RSVP to Dru Maurer atdmaurer@cityofmissionviejo.org.


Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

City business workshops offered in December

Permalink 11/20/14 14:01, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Business

Business workshop croppedBusiness workshops are held each month in the Saddleback Room at Mission Viejo City Hall through a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, SCORE, Employment Development Department (EDD), Internal Revenue Service, OC Small Business Development Center and the California Board of Equalization.  The free or low-cost business workshops in December include:

  • Hiring People Who Live in the U.S. but Are Not U. S. Citizens (SCORE/IRS) on Wednesday, December 3 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. (FREE).  Register at http://www.score114.org or call 714-550-7369.
  • What Your Banker Needs to Know (SCORE) on Wednesday, December 10 from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ($35 on-line registration / $45 at the door).  Register at http://www.score114.org or call 714-550-7369.

For more information about upcoming workshops and to register for any of the upcoming business workshops, visit www.missionviejomeansbusiness.com.


Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

New Smart & Final Extra! store planned for Marguerite Shopping Center

Permalink 11/20/14 13:59, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Business

newstoreThe Planning & Transportation Commission recently gave the green light for a 25,580-square-foot Smart & Final Extra! store in the Marguerite Shopping Center at Trabuco Road.

The Smart and Final Extra! grocery store will feature fresh meats, produce, frozen foods, dairy, deli, bread and snacks along with beer, wine and distilled spirits.  The commission’s approval makes way for exterior building and site improvements as well as an ABC license for the store at 24021 Marguerite Parkway, Suites A-C.

The shopping center improvement project includes a building façade renovation, site landscaping enhancements, wall and monument signage, and new cart corrals and trash enclosures. It also calls for a 2,100-square-foot addition to the back of the building for Leslie’s Pool Supply and to restore the loading dock previously used by Safeway.

Along with the shopping center improvements and work for Smart & Final Extra!, three of the existing tenants will relocate within the shopping center.  Leslie’s Pool Supply will move to a new suite, just south of its current location.  Mission Viejo Florist and Vista Cleaners will move to new suites north of the new Smart & Final Extra! store.  The relocations are expected to be finished this year with the opening of Smart & Final Extra! anticipated in March 2015.

Headquartered in Los Angeles, where it started 140 years ago, Smart & Final Stores, Inc. operates about 250 grocery and food service stores under the “Smart & Final”; “Smart & Final Extra!”; and “Cash & Carry Smart Foodservice” banners in California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho and northern Mexico.


Kelly Tokarski

City of Mission Viejo

Public Information Specialist

Puttin’ the “Glitz” into “Puttin on the Glitz” - On November 29, San Clemente celebrates the holidays with the annual event on Ave. Del Mar in the heart of town

Permalink 11/20/14 13:50, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings, Business


The beauty of hand-crafted jewelry is always the perfect gift for a loved one, or for yourself.


On November 29, San Clemente celebrates the holidays with the annual “Puttin’ on the Glitz” event on Ave. Del Mar in the heart of town.

The Jewelry Artists of the San Clemente Artists Association will open up their gallery from 5PM to 9PM on Saturday and 10:00 AM to 2:30 PM on Sunday Nov. 30, for a special showing and sale of their exquisite, hand created jewelry.

It’s the perfect time to enjoy some refreshments as you choose which beautiful pieces  to purchase.


The San Clemente CommunityArt Gallery is at 100 North Seville. Only jewelry made personally by the artist is on display and for sale.


Visit  the San Clemente Art Association at their website at www.scartassociation.com for more information.


Donia Moore

iwrite words

Flags are honored at Elks solemn ritual of Flag Retirement

Permalink 11/19/14 16:07, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings, Charitable

Flag retirement 036(2).jpg

Marines of USMC Recruiting Station in Orange CA folding of the Flag


Mission Viejo, November 15, 2014. Officers and members of the Elks lodges of Orange County gathered at the Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley Elks lodge #2444 for a dinner and to participate in the Elks solemn ritual of Flag Retirement.

Thousands of service worn Flags of our country, ready to be retired were collected throughout the year. They were all properly folded and displayed on long tables lining the Elks lodge room.

The event takes place each year in November, when officers and members representing the ten Elks lodges of the Orange Coast District meet in a respectful ceremony to pay one last honor to the service worn Flags before they are taken away and properly incinerated.

Following a dinner, distinguished members and guests were introduced by Norm Jones, Past District Deputy Grand Exalted Ruler and lodge secretary. The United States Marine Corps color guard from the USMC Recruiting Station in Orange CA. presented the colors.

A musical presentation by the Mission Viejo High School Coral group, singing “America the Beautiful” and “The Star Spangled Banner,” drew a thunderous applause from the appreciative audience. The “March of Flags” was presented by Boy Scouts of Troop #1273. Greg Neneman, President of the Huntington Beach Elks lodge #1959 conducted the Retirement Ritual with assistance from the Orange Coast District lodge officers.

An impressive folding of the Flag was performed by the United States Marines and narrated by Elk lodge presidents Philip Moore of the Orange Elks lodge #1475 and Mike Hobbs of the Santa Ana lodge #794. The inspirational keynote address was given by Staff Sergeant Freddie Real USMC. This year’s event was hosted by the Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley lodge and chaired by Harvey Boelts, Past State Vice President of the Orange Coast District and this year’s Americanism Chairman.

Mission Viejo/Saddleback Valley Elks Lodge #2444 is celebrating 44 years of service to Saddleback Valley Communities. It is one of 10 lodges in the Orange Coast District of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) whose headquarters is in Chicago, Illinois. The BPOE is a charitable organization with a 146 history of giving. "Elks Care Elks Share."


Andy Costello
2014-15 CHEA Public Relations Chairman
Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley Lodge #2444

Do you want to make a difference in someone’s life?

Permalink 11/19/14 15:56, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Happenings, Charitable

If you have a desire to be a friend and add to the quality of life to someone  who is terminally ill,  consider volunteering for HOSPICE CARE OF CALIFORNIA


Volunteer Orientation

January 13, 20, and 27, 2015

At Las Palmas: Vintage Senior Living

24962 Calle Aragon

Laguna Woods, CA 92637


Lunch will be provided


If you would like more information or to attend, please contact:


Kelsi Garcia

Volunteer Coordinator








Permalink 11/19/14 15:53, by Susan Espenschied, Categories: Pacific Symphony


Also, Beethoven’s Mighty Seventh Symphony and world premiere tribute to
Music Director Carl St.Clair by Composer-in-Residence Narong Prangcharoen


Savor two giant works of the repertoire for Pacific Symphony’s first concert in December, beginning with Beethoven’s masterful and rhythmic Seventh Symphony, which the composer himself called “one of my best works.”

Then, the program turns to perhaps the world’s most lyrical, popular and critically admired piano concerto—Rachmaninoff’s Second—performed by keyboard wonder and longtime Symphony friend, Alain Lefèvre.

The concert, led by Music Director Carl St.Clair, opens with a world premiere by the Symphony’s Composer-in-Residence Narong Prangcharoen, who offers a musical tribute to the maestro with his piece, “Illuminating Journey,” which honors St.Clair’s 25th anniversary with the orchestra, as well as his commitment to new music.

Taking place Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 11-13, at 8 p.m. in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, “Beethoven & Rachmaninoff” continues the 2014-15 Hal and Jeanette Segerstrom Family Foundation Classical Series. Tickets for this concert are $25-$99. A preview talk with Alan Chapman begins at 7 p.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (714) 755-5799 or visit PacificSymphony.org.


Jayce Keane

Director of Public Relations

Pacific Symphony

3631 S. Harbor Blvd. Suite 100

Santa Ana, CA 92704

Direct: 714/ 876-2383 │Tickets: 714/ 755-5799

:: Next >>

©2014 by Mark Espenschied

Contact | Help | Blog theme by Asevo | blog software | webhost | monetize blog