Category Archives: Community

Laguna Niguel, Calif., native came storming back to tie the first set 5-5

Laguna Niguel, Calif – The Blue Devils were eager to close out their home slate on Senior Day with their lone honoree leading the way on court one. But Beatrice Capra did not take the court Tuesday as illness prevented her from competing.

Despite playing with a shorthanded roster, No. 8 Duke defeated N.C. State 6-1 by earning straight-set wins on all but the No. 1 singles court. Capra’s absence was felt before the match began, as her sister Pia joined the team at center court to accept flowers and an award on her behalf.

“With Beatrice not being here and missing her Senior Day stuff, it has been emotional for everybody on our team,” Duke head coach Jamie Ashworth said. “Before the match, we talked about what kind of player Beatrice is and how she is such a great competitor. Our goal for today was to have everybody play like her—not giving up anything on the court and grinding out every point.”

Without Capra as her partner at the top doubles spot, freshman Ellyse Hamlin moved down to court three to play with classmate Jessica Ho against Barbara Mancera and Amanda Rebol. The doubles point came down to the rookie duo after the Blue Devils (17-4, 10-2 in the ACC) and the Wolfpack (12-10, 4-8) split the first two matches. Samantha Harris and Kaitlyn McCarthy dispatched Martina Frantova and Tayla Stenta 6-2 at No. 1 doubles, but Chalena Scholl and Alyssa Smith lost six straight games after claiming a 3-0 lead to give N.C. State’s Joanna Nalborska and Bianca Moldovan the 6-3 win.

Capra’s substitute stepped up to put Duke on the scoreboard, hitting the match winner from the net and clinching the doubles point with a 6-4 win on court three.

“Not having Beatrice here on her senior day was an emotional day for all of us,” Hamlin said. “It’s definitely difficult coming out and not having Beatrice [as my partner], who I’ve been playing with this whole year. But Jessica and I did a good job of communicating and making adjustments to each other.”

Hamlin also clinched the match for the home squad with the third singles win of the afternoon. The Fairfield, Conn., native lost the first game but broke Moldovan’s serve and never looked back, rolling through the two-set match 6-2, 6-1.

Of her four matches before Saturday’s 6-3, 6-3 win against Boston College, Hamlin had lost three and left one unfinished. But the freshman is playing her best tennis as the regular season comes to a close, earning the fourth point to clinch the team match for the second consecutive contest.

“It has definitely been nice clinching for these past two matches,” Hamlin said. “I’ve been struggling throughout this whole year, so getting those and getting that confidence back is very helpful heading into the last two away matches and ACCs.”

Harris and Ho set Hamlin up to give the Blue Devils the win after recording the first two singles victories. Harris, competing two spots up from her usual No. 4 position for just the fourth time this season, led all players off the courts with a quick 6-1, 6-1 victory against Nalborska. Ho dropped only one game in her 6-0, 6-1 rout of Rebol.

Redshirt freshman Christina Makarova put Duke up 5-0 thanks to her 6-1, 6-2 defeat of Stenta after Hamlin’s match had finished, and all eyes turned to courts one and six to watch the end of the two closest matches of the day.

The Blue Devils were also competing without Scholl in the singles lineup as Ashworth and his coaching staff elected to give the junior rest and test his young players in a high-pressure situation. The decision brought Smith into the lineup at No. 6 singles.

Playing in just her fifth singles match of the season and first since March 20 at Louisville, Smith struggled in the opening games and trailed Mancera 2-4. But the Laguna Niguel, Calif., native came storming back to tie the first set 5-5. Smith fought through a tight tiebreaker to claim the opening frame 7-6 (9-7) and had little difficulty closing out the win, never trailing in the second set—which she won 6-3.

“Alyssa played a good match. She hasn’t had a lot of opportunities, and I think she did a great job of taking advantage of the opportunity she had today,” Ashworth said. “One thing that Alyssa does really well is bring emotion to the court. Having her out there on the court was especially good for us today.”

Without Capra to take on No. 51 Frantova, No. 41 McCarthy stepped up to fill the shoes of Duke’s top player. The freshman was frustrated by Frantova’s power in the first set, losing the frame 3-6.

But as her teammates wrapped up their singles matches and came to stand on the sidelines by court one, McCarthy found the emotion and energy to fight back. She hit a decisive winner from the net to claim her first lead of the second set 4-3 and then broke Frantova’s serve with four straight points to set up her win in the frame 6-4.

But N.C. State earned its lone point in the team contest as Frantova claimed the third-set tiebreaker 10-8.

“Kaitlyn stepped up when she needed to. I don’t think Kaitlyn lost that match—[Frantova] won that match,” Ashworth said. “When there were big points, [Frantova] hit some winners and put Kaitlyn in trouble, but Kaitlyn did a great job of fighting and competing and getting herself back into it.”

Although Capra’s timeline for return is unknown, the Blue Devils will have to stay on their game for the final two matches of the regular season to keep alive their hopes of a top-four seed and two-day bye in the ACC tournament.

Duke will hit the road to take on Georgia Tech in Atlanta Friday at 3 p.m. before heading to Clemson, S.C., for a match against the Tigers Sunday at noon.

Laguna Hills and Rancho Santa Margarita plan to pursue other options instead of contracting with the county in the new shelter

Laguna Hills, CA – 

The Orange County Board of Supervisors Tuesday approved plans for a new animal shelter that will be built on a former Marine base in Tustin.

The plans for the new shelter to replace the one built in 1941 in Orange, which has come under fire in recent years from animal rights activists, have been in the works for years, but had been held up as Navy officials weighed the proposal.

The Navy had planned to turn over the property to the county for an animal shelter, but it won’t be available until at least next year. So county officials have arranged for a land swap. The animal shelter will be built on land owned by the South Orange County Community College District, which will get the Navy property once it is available.

“Back in 1995 our predecessors determined we were getting the dirt from the Navy and Tustin was an ideal location,” said Supervisor Shawn Nelson, who was one of the main negotiators for the current deal.

“Slowly, but surely, the Navy slow-plays the whole thing, which is kind of the Navy way — they’re in no hurry,” Nelson said. “So here we are 21 years later … we made a decision we’re going to have to start looking for another site and what we realized is we could come up with a creative solution. We’ll temporarily lease the college district property to get going on this and then when we get the title for the Navy property we’ll deed that property to (the college district).”

County officials have also jump-started the process to getting the shelter ready by hiring Snyder Langston LP, which can design and build it, Nelson said.

An advisory board will solicit comments for the shelter’s design and mission, Nelson said. Officials envision a shelter that provides an array of services for cities that use the shelter, he added.

“We want to provide a Chevrolet plan, but if cities want to upgrade we can make that available if space permits,” Nelson said. “If a city wants to pay more to keep a cat or a dog alive and there’s space then fine they’ll just have to pay a little extra for it.”

Some cities, however, “just want us to handle it and keep the costs down,” and don’t want to pay extra for a no-kill shelter, Nelson said.

The project is expected to cost about $35 million for the shelter on 10 acres, and construction could begin by July. The cities that contract with the county for animal control are Anaheim, Brea, Cypress, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Laguna Hills, Lake Forest, Orange, Placentia, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Stanton, Tustin, Villa Park and Yorba Linda.

Laguna Hills and Rancho Santa Margarita plan to pursue other options instead of contracting with the county in the new shelter.

O.C. ranked as top spot for new construction jobs

Laguna Hills, CA – 

Orange County is the nation’s construction hot spot, at least by job-growth figures.

Analysis of federal jobs data by the Associated General Contractors of America shows Orange County construction bosses added 12,500 jobs in the 12 months ended in February, a 15 percent jump. That topped the national ranking for new jobs followed by New York City (up 11,900 jobs, or 9 percent); Westchester, N.Y. (up 7,800 jobs, or 23 percent); and Orlando (up 7,500 jobs, 13 percent).

While real estate was slow to recover from a painful recession, the extended economic rebound has filled various types of real estate niches, locally and nationwide, from housing to lodging to office space to factories and warehouses. The demand created a push to build new supply in many parts of the nation and make construction workers hot properties.

Construction is hugely important to Orange County, where the building industry’s $5.8 billion annual payroll ranks third among all U.S. counties. The local construction hiring spree pushed local building trades employment to 97,700 workers in February. That’s up 49 percent from the 2010 low to the highest level since December 2007.

But it’s not a trend only in Orange County: Job counts in construction grew in the past year in 234 of 358 metro areas tracked by the contractor association. Los Angeles added 6,100 jobs, or 5 percent. Inland Empire employment grew by 6,900 workers, or 9 percent.

“Many parts of the country continue to see robust construction job growth as demand for projects rises,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “Construction employment in many energy-producing areas, however, appears to be suffering as lower prices for products like coal, oil and natural gas cut into demand for construction services.”

Cheap oil might help your household budget, but it has also axed the need to develop more energy-exploration projects. Just look where construction lost the most jobs in the past year: Texas!

Fort Worth was the worst market for construction workers – down 4,100 jobs, or 6 percent, in the 12 months ended in February. Midland was down 3,200 jobs, or 12 percent, for the third-biggest dip; followed by Odessa, down 3,000 building jobs, or 15 percent.

At the state level, California was the largest construction-job creator in a building-trades expansion that saw 43 states and the District of Columbia boost construction employment in the 12 months ended in February.

California added 53,800 jobs, or 7.6 percent, in the year; Florida added 25,800 jobs, or 6.2 percent; New York added 19,100 jobs, or 5.5 percent; and Massachusetts added 14,600 jobs, or 11 percent. Conversely, energy-heavy North Dakota lost the most construction jobs in a year: 5,300 positions or 14.5 percent.

Nationwide, energy’s woes couldn’t dull a broad-based building boom. Construction firms added 253,000 workers in the 12 months ended in February – a 4 percent jump – to 6.63 million workers, the highest since December 2008. February’s unemployment rate for construction workers was 8.6 percent, a 10-year low for the month.

The heavy hiring comes with another benefit for construction workers: raises!

Average hourly earnings in construction rose by 2.4 percent in the 12 months ended in February versus 1.3 percent in the previous year, the contractor association reported. Another pay metric, average weekly wages, showed Orange County construction pay was up at a 4.6 percent annual rate in 2015’s third quarter versus raises at a 2.1 percent annual pace for all local industries.

Construction’s outlook seems rosy as building-industry spending nationwide rises at a healthy pace, according to economist Patrick Newport at IHS Global Insight.

In a recent report, he noted that a key building-expenditure metric – core construction (building of homes, apartments, state and local government projects, and private nonresidential construction) – probably grew at a swift 9 percent annualized rate in the first quarter.

“The outlook for residential construction this year is for further solid gains driven by a pickup in household formation by young adults,” Newport wrote. “Private nonresidential construction has been mixed: manufacturing, communications, and religious are slipping; office, and education and lodging are climbing; and the remaining categories are moving sideways.”

Can this momentum get the building business back to pre-recession heights? Note that Orange County, for example, is still 12,700 jobs short of its 2006 pinnacle in construction jobs.

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Ohana Music Festival to Bring World-Renowned Acts and Positive Vibes to Southern California – During the summer months, Doheny State Beach is one of the most visited shorelines in Southern California. Located just off of Dana Harbor Drive and Pacific Coast Highway, approximately one mile north of I-5, it is a celebrated surfing spot and revered as Orange County’s best camping site.

With over a mile of sandy beach, this year, Doheny will be offering something new for everyone who enjoys sunny summer days and crashing waves (as well as for those who are unable to snag a hard-to-get overnight camping spot). It’s called the Ohana Music Festival, and on Saturday, August 27, it will be making it’s grand debut — wrapping up the following evening.

The two-day festival, produced by Live Nation and SGE, will showcase world-renowned acts such as Elvis Costello, Eddie Vedder, Lana Del Rey, City and Colour, and Cat Power, plus a handful of other talented performances.

ohana music fest

Single day tickets ($99.50 + fees), weekend passes ($195 + fees), and a limited number of VIP passes ($499 + fees) are available for purchase.

There will be food options, craft beer, wine and signature cocktails available from festival partners, including Pacifico, Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, and delicious local restaurants and food trucks.

If you happen to have extra cash to dish out, a VIP pass will include “festival entry, VIP Lounge admission with expedited festival entry, a VIP laminate, an Ohana partnership swag bag, access to the Ohana VIP Lounge, inclusive of a hosted cocktail bar and complimentary hors d’oeuvres (while supplies last), a live stream of the music stage, comfortable lounge seating with shaded areas, cabanas to hang out and relax in, private restrooms, a dedicated cash bar and access to the exclusive Ohana photo booth” to capture unforgettable weekend memories.

To get the festival underway, on Friday, August 26, comedian Jeff Ross, along with Kelly Slater and Eddie Vedder, will host the Ohana Luau at The Ritz-Carlton in Laguna Niguel. The charity gala will feature dinner, cocktails, live entertainment, and a live auction.

The festival gates will open at 1:00pm on both days.

Doheny State Beach

Six-Year-Old Girl Comes to the Rescue of Trapped Ducklings

Laguna Niguel, CA – Eight ducklings separated from their mom and dad after falling down a narrow drainage pipe found their hero in a brave 6-year-old Laguna Niguel girl who came to the rescue of the fowl family.

Mia and her mother, Skye Rabii, were in Laguna Hills Saturday afternoon when they were flagged down by another family, who had come upon the mother duck with just one lone duckling. The father was nearby.

The family had located the other ducklings down a narrow pipe, but no one had arms small enough to reach down and pull them out.

Mia said “I can do it,” her mom said, and reached down the pipe all the way to her shoulders and pulled out the eight ducklings one by one, reuniting them with their anxious mother.
High on Medical Marijuana, Man Crashes Into Jack in the Box

Mia, who is going to be Student of the Week at school this week, wants to be a veterinarian.


Laguna Niguel, CA – Perched atop a seaside bluff, surrounded by panoramic views of the Pacific and the sandy shores of Salt Creek Beach below, The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel is a coastal haven of new experiences. Located halfway between LA and San Diego, along the coast of Dana Point, the resort awakens the senses with its vibrant beachfront locale and celebrated Five Diamond service. Sprawling shoreline vistas create awe-inspiring memories from the moment of arrival. Dine on Southern California coastal cuisine, explore your surfside surroundings on an eco-adventure, or soothe with a spa escape. The California coast is calling. 

  • Experience The Ultimate Family Beach Vacation
  • 396 guestrooms including 29 spacious suites and 367 guestrooms
  • Located in Dana Point, along seven miles of scenic coastline
  • The Ritz-Carlton Club Level with dedicated concierge
  • Spa with 12 treatment rooms, named among the top 100 spa resorts
  • Eco-Adventure Center for unique eco-excursions and experiences
  • Flexible venues for Meetings, Conferences and Retreats
  • Graceful settings for Weddings, Galas and Celebrations
  • Seasonal overnight packages and day packages
  • Six restaurants, bars and dining lounges
  • AAA Five Diamond status for the 31st consecutive year

The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel is a Tier 4 property in The Ritz-Carlton Rewards.


Laguna Niguel, CA – There are plenty of things to love about Apex Laguna Niguel in Laguna Niguel, California. There are the amazing and spacious floor plans. And the apartment amenities in these luxury apartments for rent are nothing to sneeze at either. However, those aren’t the only things that make these luxury apartments in Laguna Niguel appealing. There are also the amazing community amenities that are available.

The Apex community comes equipped with bike storage, controlled access gates, a dog wash, covered parking, and community recycling. Those are just the general things. The some of the best parts of the community are the media room, luxury club lounge, and business center where you can watch, relax, and handle business respectively. The secluded outdoor lounges have fire pits that can be enjoyed by residents and their company on a beautiful day. The outdoor lounges are only second to the gorgeous courtyards and barbeques. There is also a resort-style salt water pool, spa, and cabanas, and an amazing yoga/ TRX studio. The gym has a great set of free weights and a spectacular fitness center. Residents can enjoy the sky deck that overlooks the city lights and enjoy the wondrous California night sky.

Apex Laguna Niguel is the perfect community for residents that love to enjoy the outdoors or take advantage of indoor amenities as well. You can bring friends and family over or enjoy the community amenities yourself…either way you are in for a great time. Schedule a tour today and see how you can make one of the amazing luxury apartment units of Apex Laguna Niguel yours, and get yourself access to these community amenities.

SBR Coaching Announces Training for the Breath of Life Ventura Triathlon

SBR Coaching's training will take place May 14 – June 26, 2016. Training days will be on Wednesdays from 6-7:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 8-10:30 a.m. SBR Coaching will utilize Racquet Club of Irvine's pool and open water swims at local OC beaches, as well as running and cycling trails in Newport Beach, Irvine, Tustin and Laguna Niguel.

SBR Coaching, a fitness training company that specializes in preparation for triathlons, has announced a six-week program designed to prepare beginner to intermediate triathletes, of all ages, for the upcoming Breath of Life Ventura Triathlon.

The Breath of Life Ventura Triathlon is hosted by Renegade Racing, the premiere event company in Southern California. The 18th Annual Breath of Life Ventura Triathlon, to take place Sunday, June 26 at the Ventura Harbor, encourages athletes to perform their own fundraising in support of treatment facilities at local hospitals supporting children diagnosed with Primary Immunodeficiency (PI).

Coach Pam Nichol, owner of SBR Coaching, says training will include four open water swim sessions, track workouts, race prep, race strategy and also a practice race. She also added that her "clients love Renegade Racing events because they are the safest, most well-organized and enjoyable events."

E.M. Nathanson, ‘The Dirty Dozen’ Author, Dies at 87

Laguna Niguel, CA – The 1967 action-packed war movie based on the novel featured an all-star cast including Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine and Telly Savalas.

Nathanson died Tuesday of heart failure in Laguna Niguel, Calif., his longtime friend Frank McAdams told The Hollywood Reporter.E.M. Nathanson, who wrote the 1965 war novel The Dirty Dozen that was adapted for the action-packed film starring Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine, has died. He was 87.

Nathanson died Tuesday of heart failure in Laguna Niguel, Calif., his longtime friend Frank McAdams told The Hollywood Reporter.

Nathanson is best known for The Dirty Dozen, the story of 12 convicted servicemen — robbers, murderers, rapists — who are sent off on a suicide mission to blow up a chateau of German generals just before D-Day with the promise that those who survive will have their sentences commuted.

The novel was inspired by the supposedly true story of some World War II criminal soldiers who got the nickname the Dirty Dozen (or Filthy Thirteen, depending on the source) for their refusal to bathe and who were said to have been sent off on a similar mission. Nathanson heard the story from his friend, producer Russ Meyer (Beyond the Valley of the Dolls), who said he learned of the yarn while working as a combat photographer during World War II.

Nathanson got a book contract to tell the story, but even after doing more than two years of research, he was never able to verify the accuracy of Meyer’s tale. So he and his editor decided to fictionalize the story.

The best-selling novel sold more than 2 million copies, was translated into 10 languages and was made into the 1967 film of the same name that was directed by Robert Aldrich and also starred Charles Bronson, newly retired NFL star Jim Brown, John Cassavetes, George Kennedy and Donald Sutherland.

The movie was nominated for four Oscars and ranked No. 65 on the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 great suspense/thriller movies in American film. 

Nathanson wrote a sequel, A Dirty Distant War, in 1987. It picks up the story of John Reisman, the OSS officer who recruited the Dirty Dozen, three months after the first novel. Here he parachutes into French Indochina (Vietnam) to help local guerrillas against the Japanese.

Nathanson wrote four other novels: 1970's The Latecomers, 1973's It Gave Everybody Something to Do (with Louise Thoresen), 1993's Knight's Cross (with Aaron Bank) and 2003's Lovers and Schemers.

Nathanson was born in 1928 and grew up in Yonkers, N.Y. His parents separated when he was 2, and because his mother suffered from depression, she sent him when he was 7 to the Hebrew National Home, a local orphanage. He stayed at Hebrew National until he graduated high school and remained in touch with the people he befriended there for the rest of his life.

Nathanson majored in anthropology at New York University. His first job as a journalist was for Women’s Wear Daily when he was 17. He also worked for the Washington PostTheArlington SunDaring Detective magazine and as a freelance journalist.

He is survived by his partner Elizabeth Henderson and a son Michael from his marriage to Mary Ann Nathanson.