Around Town: Argyros Foundation’s $750,000 gift lifts Balboa Island Museum

The Balboa Island Museum & Historical Society opened at its current location at 210 Marine Ave. in November.
(File Photo)

Newport Beach philanthropists Julia and George Argyros donated $750,000 to help get the Balboa Island Museum & Historical Society established in its new location.

The museum, formerly in a cottage on Marine Avenue, reopened in November at 210 Marine Ave. in a space three times larger. Since then it has had close to 20,000 visitors and received $150,000 in donations and memberships in addition to the gift from the Argyros Foundation.

“With the Balboa Island Museum’s mission to share the area’s history and culture with residents and visitors, we felt overjoyed to support such a cause that touches the foundation’s values of education, arts and culture so cohesively,” Julia Argyros said in a statement. “The museum is such an important piece of Newport Beach’s history and is a truly special place that will always be near and dear to our hearts.”

The museum’s fundraising continues with its new women’s speakers series and a campaign set to launch this spring supporting educational programs and new exhibits.

Easter Bunny comes to Fashion Island

The Easter Bunny will be in Newport Beach from Friday through April 20.

Visitors can take photos with the big cottontail from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily at the Atrium Lawn at Fashion Island, 401 Newport Center Drive.

For more information, visit

Laguna Beach hosts annual children’s track meet

All children who live in Laguna Beach or attend a Laguna Beach Unified School District school are invited to join the city of Laguna Beach’s annual track meet from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday.

Anyone born in 2004 or after may sign up for as many as three events.

The meet will be held at the Laguna Beach High School track, 625 Park Ave. For more information or to sign up, visit

Art from H.B. schools to be displayed at Creative Visions Showcase

The Huntington Beach Arts Center will present the Creative Visions Showcase starting Friday and running through April 6. The event will feature visual and performing arts displays from K-12 schools all over Huntington Beach.

The opening gala Friday will feature the Huntington Beach City School District at 3:30 p.m. and the Huntington Beach Union High School District at 5 p.m.

The closing gala April 6 will feature the Ocean View School District beginning at 5 p.m.

The arts center is at 538 Main St.

Interactive car and truck show for kids set at fairgrounds

A free interactive car and truck show for children will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the OC Fair & Event Center, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa.

Touch-a-Truck will enable kids to learn about firetrucks, police vehicles and construction trucks while honking horns and interacting with drivers.

Guests can win prizes at the fairgrounds’ Orange County Market Place during the event.

For more information, visit

Interfaith town hall to discuss ‘Finding Common Ground in Divided Times’

The Interfaith Network and OC Human Relations will present a town hall Saturday featuring leaders from across the county about how to deepen understanding and build empathy.

Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach) will moderate the panel, which will include representatives of the Rose Project of Jewish Federation and Family Services, the LGBTQ Center of OC, the Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council and Christ Our Redeemer AME Church. They will discuss healing, empathy building, respect and possible legislative methods to battle messages of hate.

The town hall will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. at Christ our Redeemer AME Church, 45 Tesla Way, Irvine.

Laguna Beach students to hold yard sale to raise money for scholarships

Ten Boys Who Care, a group of eighth-graders from Thurston Middle School in Laguna Beach, will hold a yard sale from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at No Square Theatre, 384 Legion St.

People can drop off items there from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday.

The boys will use funds raised for two scholarships to be presented at the Laguna Beach High School graduation.

Archery, birds and kayaks to be featured at OC Fair & Event Center

A home and outdoor recreation expo with free archery, predatory bird shows and kayak riding will be held this weekend at the OC Fair & Event Center, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa.

The $6 program will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

For more information, visit

Free document shredding offered in Huntington Beach

A free document shredding event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Coldwell Banker, 1720 Pacific Coast Hwy., Huntington Beach.

For more information, visit

Laguna art college presents Student Art Market

The Laguna College of Art + Design will present its bi-annual Student Art Market this weekend.

Students will showcase and sell their creations, including jewelry, clothing, paintings, graphic designs and more from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 345 N. Coast Hwy. Complimentary pastries and coffee will be provided by Starbucks.

Susan G. Komen Orange County to hold breast cancer conference at UCI

Susan G. Komen Orange County will present a breast cancer conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the UC Irvine Conference Center, 311 W. Peltason Drive.

The program will bring together patients, families, caregivers, researchers and medical professionals for a forum to share new information, offer resources and support those affected by the disease.

For a conference agenda, more information and registration, visit

Bromeliad flowers to be featured at Sherman Library event

The Saddleback Bromeliad Society will hold an event featuring diverse plants at 1 p.m. Saturday at Sherman Library & Gardens, 2647 E. Coast Hwy., Corona del Mar.

Unique bromeliads, a species of flower, will be for sale.

For more information, visit

Segerstrom Center to honor creative women at event

The Segerstrom Center for the Arts will present its second annual DAMAS Celebrating Women Creators, a free event Saturday that commemorates artistic women during National Women’s Month.

The program will start at 5 p.m. at the center’s Julianne and George Argyros Plaza, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.

Female poets, painters and performers will showcase their skills with exhibits, interactive booths and demonstrations.

For more information, visit

Fit Body Boot Camp 5K set Sunday in Fountain Valley

The Fountain Valley Community Foundation will partner with its host city on a Fit Body Boot Camp 5K fun run at 8 a.m. Sunday at the Fountain Valley Recreation Center & Sports Park, 16400 Brookhurst St.

Runners of all levels are welcome. Money raised at the event will benefit the foundation.

For more information, call (714) 839-8611 or visit

GritCycle ride to raise funds for cancer research

GritCycle, an indoor spin cycling class in Costa Mesa, will present a “karma” ride at noon Sunday to raise funds for cancer research.

Seats are $50, with all proceeds going to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The class is in partnership with Team Hero, a group of Newport Harbor High School juniors who are part of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Students of the Year campaign.

GritCycle is at 1731 Santa Ana Ave. To reserve a seat, go to For details, email

Sherman Library to present annual open house

Sherman Library & Gardens will present its sixth annual open house Tuesday where guests can view historical documents and the library’s archives, which usually are closed to the public.

The event will run from 5 to 8 p.m. at Dahlia Avenue and East Coast Highway in Corona del Mar.

RSVPs are requested by Friday at (949) 673-1880.

Laguna Beach opens applications for city panels

The city of Laguna Beach is accepting applications from residents for several city committees and commissions.

The following panels have open spots:

  • Planning Commission (two)
  • Arts Commission (four)
  • Emergency/Disaster Preparedness Committee (five)
  • Housing and Human Services Committee (six)
  • Personnel Board (four)

All positions will have two-year terms beginning July 1 and running to June 30, 2021. Most of the groups meet once or twice a month.
Laguna Beach residents may apply online at or at the city clerk’s office by 5 p.m. April 25. Interviews and appointments will be held at the City Council meeting May 7.

Wild & Crazy Taco Night returning to Costa Mesa

The 26th annual Wild & Crazy Taco Night will bring 23 Orange County chefs together to make unique tacos for the public to sample from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. April 4 at Share Our Selves, 1550 Superior Ave., Costa Mesa.

For more information and tickets, visit

Wake Up Newport event to feature OCTA leader

Darrell Johnson, chief executive of the Orange County Transportation Authority, will be a featured speaker at a free Wake Up Newport event from 7:15 to 8:30 a.m. April 4 at the Newport Beach Public Library, 1000 Avocado Ave.

Johnson will discuss freeway improvement projects and the OCTA board’s plans for the next year.

For more information, visit

Newport surgeon and Daily Pilot columnist to speak about book

Author and Newport Beach surgeon Dr. Himmet Dajee and co-author Patrice Apodaca will discuss their new book, “A Boy Named Courage,” from 7 to 8:30 p.m. April 4 at the Newport Beach Public Library, 1000 Avocado Ave.

The book tells of an Indian immigrant’s journey from apartheid South Africa to successful surgeon.

Apodaca is a former Los Angeles Times staff writer who now writes a column for the Daily Pilot.

For more information, visit

H.B. academy to present ‘Gentlemen Prefer Blondes’

The Huntington Beach Academy for the Performing Arts will present “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” a play about two women searching for male companionship in 1920s Europe, from April 4 to 7 at the Huntington Beach High School Theatre, 1905 Main St.

For tickets, visit

Laguna Beach event to discuss earthquakes

The city of Laguna Beach and the Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce will present an “Open for Construction” workshop from 1 to 3 p.m. April 5 in the City Council chamber, 505 Forest Ave.

The program will feature a discussion of older homes that are not securely connected to their foundation and multi-story wood buildings that are susceptible to damage from earthquakes.

Jerry Meyers, director of the Laguna Beach Community Emergency Response Team, will speak about how residents can prepare for an earthquake.

To register, visit and click on the “Events” tab.

Newport’s American Legion post to honor Vietnam vets

American Legion Newport Harbor Post 291 will recognize Vietnam War-era veterans next weekend with a welcome-home party.

The event will start at 5 p.m. April 6 at the post, 215 15th St., Newport Beach. Highlights include food and drinks, live music, a “welcome-home wall” for vets from all branches to post photos and when and where they served, and tours of a Vietnam-era Swift Boat docked outside the clubhouse.

Tickets are $25 and are available at (949) 673-5070.

Applications being accepted for Huntington Beach Citizens Academy

The city of Huntington Beach is accepting applications for its third annual Citizens Academy, a nine-week program that introduces residents to the inner workings of government service.

Participants will meet with City Council members and various department heads and will be taken on tours of city facilities. The program runs May 1 to July 22.

Applications are due April 11. For more information, visit

Volunteers can help monitor bird nest sites at Bolsa Chica

Eyes on Nest Sites, a program that monitors bird nest sites at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, seeks volunteers to participate in weekly data collection from April through August.

For more information, call (714) 846-1114 or email

Municipal Water District accepting art entries for poster contest

The Municipal Water District of Orange County is accepting entries until April 5 for a water awareness poster contest.

The competition, with the theme “Water is Life,” is open to Orange County students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

For rules and to view examples of past artwork, visit

Newport club receives award for work with Child Abuse Prevention Center

The Exchange Club of Newport Harbor was recently presented with a Lifetime Legacy Award by the Child Abuse Prevention Center.

The award was presented at the center’s 35th annual gala, where it raised $275,500 from more than 350 guests.

The center’s new executive director, Lisa Fujimoto, presented Richard Swinney, president of the Exchange Club, with the center’s first Lifetime Legacy Award.

“With more than three decades of service in our community, the Exchange Club of Newport Harbor exemplifies what this award represents to us,” Fujimoto said in a statement. “We couldn’t be more grateful for their vision and tremendous hard work over the years.”

Festival of Arts Foundation gives $100,000 in art grants

The Festival of Arts Foundation in Laguna Beach gave a total of $100,000 to 23 community art organizations as part of its 2019 grant season.

The foundation, which operates separately from the Festival of Arts, has a five-member board of trustees that oversees the annual grant program for local arts-related nonprofits.

The winners of this year’s FOA Foundation awards:

  • Art 4 Kids
  • Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach
  • Festival of Arts Education
  • Lagunatunes
  • Laguna Art Museum
  • Laguna Beach Chamber Singers
  • Laguna Beach High School art, ceramics, drama and music departments
  • Laguna Beach Live
  • Laguna Beach Seniors
  • Laguna Community Concert Band
  • Laguna College of Art + Design
  • Laguna Dance Festival
  • Laguna Playhouse
  • Laguna Plein Air Painters Assn.
  • LOCA Arts Education
  • My Hero Project
  • No Square Theater
  • Thurston Middle School and drama department
  • Sawdust Art Enrichment Fund

Laguna to honor police at annual awards banquet

The Laguna Beach Exchange Club invites the public to an awards banquet honoring members of the Laguna Beach Police Department for their service in 2017 and 2018.

Four members of the Police Department will be honored at the banquet: 2017 Officer of the Year David Gensemer, 2017 Professional Employee of the Year Kristen Berry, 2018 Officer of the Year Mike Short and 2018 Professional Employee of the Year Jordan Villwock.

The event will be held at 11 a.m. April 11 at Seven-degrees, 891 Laguna Canyon Road. To reserve a $75 ticket to the banquet, call Sande St. John at (949) 633-9429 or email by April 8.


This article was originally published at 4:55 p.m. March 28 and was later updated with the Newport American Legion item.