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Boys & Girls Club announces May gala

The Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach is entering its 57th year and organizers are planning a major fundraiser, “Escape to Paradise" at the ninth annual Art of Giving Gala on May 8 at the Montage Resort & Spa. The evening will include sumptuous dining, silent and live auctions, music, and dancing in traditional tropical Laguna style.

In the past year the club served nearly 1,500 young people and their families. This was made possible through the generous support garnered at last year’s Art of Giving Gala. The success of this event has a substantial impact on the club’s ability to enrich the lives of more than 60% of Laguna Beach elementary school students and 300 Aliso Viejo students. In 2008, club statistics revealed that 56% of members live in households with incomes of less than $60,000 per year and they rely on the club for after-school and summer programs. Proceeds raised at the Art of Giving Gala will go directly toward making sure that no child is turned away from the club due to financial circumstances.

The need for the club’s services is greater now than ever before, according to the club. The downturn in the economy is driving more parents back to work making after school programs more essential than ever. This is particularly true for middle school students.


According to a recent survey by the Laguna Beach Unified School District, drug and alcohol use is on the rise among middle school students. The club expanded its partnership with the district this year and is working to increase programs at the club for middle school students.

Gala sponsorship opportunities are available now and this year packages include a room at the Montage for the night of the event. Individual tickets are also available for purchase at $450 each.

For more information about the Gala please Michelle Ray at (949) 494-2535 ext. 103 or

High school baseball fundraiser is Sunday


A fundraiser for Laguna Beach High School baseball will be Sunday at the Sandpiper on South Coast Highway.

The event will include live music by the Blues Offenders and food from La Sirena Grill and Ruby’s. Proceeds from the fundraiser will help to pay for equipment, scholarships, field maintenance and general operating cots for the baseball program.

Lumberyard hosts etiquette classes

The Lumberyard Restaurant will be the host restaurant for the fourth annual Elbows off the Table event, a dining etiquette class for children March 8.

The goal of the class is to expose young diners to the world of food and eating out, according to sponsors Suzanne Redfearn and Alan Ludloff.

Redfearn and Ludloff started the event four years ago as a way to bridge what they saw as a gap between cotillion and practical etiquette skills that would empower kids with social confidence.

The attendees learn how to greet a hostess, introduce themselves to their dining companions, make conversation, use proper table etiquette and figure out a bill and how to tip, all while enjoying a five-course dinner.

The cost of the event is $60 per diner and there are two sessions. The first is for second- to fifth-graders and the second is for sixth- to eighth- graders.


Each session accommodates approximately 30 diners.

The class is designed to replicate as authentic a dining experience as possible.

The guests order off a limited menu and confer with their dining companions about which appetizers to choose.

This year’s menu will include Lumberyard favorites such as skillet corn bread, baby back ribs, rotisserie chicken, spaghetti and meatballs, calamari, and zucchini planks.

The organizers “promise that the attendees will walk away knowing that slurping is inappropriate, and their hope is that in the future, when they care about appropriateness, the little nuggets learned at Elbows off the Table will still be with them, and they will keep the soup in their mouth and impress their date, or their boss, or their future in-laws with their wonderful manners."

To register, send a check payable to Lumberyard to: Elbows Off the Table, c/o Suzanne Redfearn, 2282 Glenneyre St., Laguna Beach, CA 92651.

Parents are welcome to dine in the restaurant during the session and will receive a 10% discount. Reservations are suggested, by calling (949) 315-7900.