Calendar: Highlights from around town

A roundup of community events throughout Orange County. To submit items, email


Vampire Queen of Mars

The Costa Mesa Playhouse will continue its 54th season with the world premiere of “Vampire Queen of Mars,” written and directed by playhouse board president, Michael Dale Brown. Performances are 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. For more information, visit

NOV. 11

Disney’s Aladdin

Tickets go on sale for Disney’s Broadway musical “Aladdin” at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. Performances will run March 6 to 23. To buy tickets, visit or the center’s box office at 600 Town Center Drive, or call the box office at (714) 556-2787.

NOV. 13

Our Brains Love Story

UC Irvine will host “Why Our Brains Love Story - A Naturalistic and Scientific Perspective on Storytelling” from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Herklotz Conference Center at the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 300 QRL, Building 506. The free event will seek to explain why human brains crave stories.

Orange County Organic Gardening Club

People can learn about organic pest control at 7:30 p.m. at an Orange County Organic Gardening Club event. The free event will feature a talk from Chris Roy of Orange County Farm Supply about pest control products. The event will be held in the Silo Building at Centennial Farm at the Orange County Fair & Events Center, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa. For more information, email

NOV. 15

Corona del Mar Residents Assn.

Newport Beach City Manager Grace Leung will speak about her vision for the city after her first two months on the job when the Corona del Mar Residents Assn. holds its monthly board meeting at 7:30 a.m. in Room 5 at the Oasis Senior Center, 801 Narcissus Ave. For more information, visit or call (949) 478-2454.

Early Thanksgiving Celebration

A Thanksgiving celebration will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Center at Founders Village Senior and Community Center, 17967 Bushard St., Fountain Valley. Guests must be 55 or older. Tickets are $7 and must be purchased at the center’s reception desk.

NOV. 16

Deadline for Newport Beach Grant

The deadline to apply for a community programs grant from the city of Newport Beach is 4:30 p.m. The city budgets $75,000 annually for grants to such programs. For more information, visit

NOV. 23

Electric Bike Demo

Electric Bike Co. will partner with HB Cycles to host an electric bike demonstration from noon to 4 p.m. at 19729 Beach Blvd., Huntington Beach.

DEC. 9 TILL 23

Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade

Angels first baseman Albert Pujols will cruise Newport Harbor as grand marshal on opening night of the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade next month. The parade, a Newport tradition celebrating its 110th anniversary, will run Dec. 19 to 23. Opening night will begin at 6:15 p.m. with a fireworks display at the Newport Pier. The parade will have a different grand marshal each night.

DEC. 31

Balboa Bay Resort

A New Year’s Eve experience will run from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Balboa Bay Resort, 1221 West Coast Highway, Newport Beach. The event will include an outdoor reception followed by a five-course meal paired by Executive Chef Rachel Haggstrom. After the meal, there will be a complimentary entry and seat in the resort’s Grand Ballroom for the Tijuana Dogs New Year’s Eve concert.


Stop the Bleed

UC Irvine trauma surgeon, Dr. Jeffry Nahmias teaches a free Stop the Bleed course on the third Saturday of each month at the UC Irvine Medical Center at 101 The City Drive South, Orange. For more information, visit

Newport Beach Walking Club

A Newport Beach walking club meets at 9 a.m. Monday through Saturday on the benches at the end of East Balboa Boulevard. For more information, call Loyda at (949) 600-0966.

Farmers’ Market

The SOCO Farmers’ Market, held at 3315 Hyland Ave., Costa Mesa, is from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays and features coffee and pastry shops, home decor, and fashion. For more information, visit

Wetlands tour

Amigos de Bolsa Chica hosts a tour of the wetlands from 9 to 10:30 a.m. the first Saturday of every month, departing every 15 minutes from the footbridge in the south parking lot of the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. The tour is led by docents and participants will learn about the birds, endangered species, history, ecology and restoration of the wetlands. For more information, call (714) 840-1575 or email

Walking Club

The Newport-Mesa Walking Club offers free walks at 9 a.m. and 7 pm. Mondays through Saturdays. For more information, call (949) 600-0966.

Monthly Beach Cleanup

Community beach cleanups are held on the first Saturday of the month from 10 a.m. to noon. In Laguna Beach, the cleanup locations with supplies are Hobie Sport, Thalia Surf, El Ranchito and United Studios of Self Defense. Participants can ask for “zero trash discounts.” For more information, email Chip McDermott at

Hortense Miller Garden

The Hortense Miller Garden covers 2 1/2 acres of the upper slopes of Boat Canyon and features a range of plants and small themed gardens. Tours through the garden and private residence are at 9:45 a.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, and must be scheduled two weeks in advance. For more information, call (949) 497-0716, ext. 6.

Preschool Stories

The Laguna Beach Public Library, 363 Glenneyre St., presents Preschool Story Time at 11 a.m. Wednesdays, followed by cookies and punch. For more information, call (949) 497-1733.

Susi Q Needle Art Guild

The Needle Art Guilt meets at the Susi Q Senior Center from 1 to 3:30 p.m. the last Friday of each month to create various items for local organizations, including Mission Hospital's oncology unit and the Friendship Shelter. All ages and levels of knitters and crocheters are welcome. In addition, a new needle art technique will be discussed each month. Yarn and monetary donations are always appreciated. This is a free activity. For more information, call (949) 497-2241.

Newland House Tour

The historic Newland House Museum, 19820 Beach Blvd., Huntington Beach, offers tours from local historians who provide information about the two-story Victorian home built in 1898. The museum is open from noon to 4 p.m. the first and third Saturday and Sunday of the month. Cost is $2 for adults, $1 for children. For information, call (714) 960-0055.

Crafty Kids Club

Huntington Beach Central Library hosts Crafty Kids Club at 2 p.m. Saturdays at the library, at 7111 Talbert Ave. Children about 5 through 9 years old are invited to enjoy stories and related crafts. Call (714) 375-5107. Press zero to speak with a librarian.

Laptime Storytime

The Huntington Beach Library presents Laptime Storytime at 9:15, 10 and 11 a.m. Tuesdays and 10 a.m. Saturdays at 7111 Talbert Ave. for children 18 months to 3 years old. The library's Preschool Storytime for children 3 to 5 are at 10 and 11 a.m. Fridays. Call (714) 375-5107.

Bolsa Chica Walking Tour

A two-hour walking tour of the Bolsa Chica mesa and wetlands is conducted at 10 a.m. on the third Sunday of every month by the Bolsa Chica Land Trust. This docent-led tour makes five stops along the walk bridge and loop trails of the wetlands. Meet in the south reserve parking lot on Pacific Coast Highway across from Bolsa Chica State Beach. Warm clothing, comfortable shoes and binoculars are recommended. Tours are free and open to the public. Call (714) 846-1001 or go to

Newport Beach Walking Club

A Newport Beach walking club meets 7 to 8.30 p.m. Monday to Friday at the Union Bank parking lot on Jamboree and Bayside Road. To join call Loyda at (949) 600-0966.


People can volunteer to tutor children each week at El Morro Elementary School at 8681 N. Coast Highway, Laguna Beach. The tutoring sessions are provided by the Learning Club, which operates two afternoons a week from January to May. For more information, visit

Photography Contest

The Newport Beach City Arts Commission is holding a photography contest through April 15. Contestants can submit pictures of a series of new sculptures at Civic Center Park at 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach. Submissions should be emailed to For more information, visit