About 100 people gathered at the OASIS Senior Center on Wednesday night to hear candidates for Newport Beach City Council discuss issues, including Corona del Mar concerns like Buck Gully's fire danger and leaf blower bans.
City Councilwoman Nancy Gardner, who represents Corona del Mar and is running unopposed, addressed the crowd but did not participate in answering questions presented by Corona del Mar Residents Assn. board member Michael Toerge.
Incumbent Leslie Daigle and challenger Mark Tabbert both participated, as well as Rush Hill, who is running for a District 3 seat. His challenger, Ed Reno, was scheduled to appear but did not show up, and no reason was given for his absence.
Tabbert said he was against Measure V, which revises several parts of the city's municipal code and is on the Nov. 2 ballot, because bundling the items in one measure didn't give people the chance to vote change by change for what they want. Daigle said the changes were innocuous, and that bundling them into one election item was a money-saving move. And Hill, who served on a committee that reviewed the changes, said the proposed changes are "absolutely non-controversial."
The candidates agreed that leaf blowers could be very annoying — getting a round of applause from the audience.
The Corona del Mar Residents Assn., which sponsored the forum, has conducted a survey about a possible leaf-blowing ban. The issue is expected to be on Tuesday's City Council agenda.
Harbor View holds Jog-a-Thon fundraiser
Harbor View Elementary School held its second annual Jog-a-Thon on Tuesday, moving the event indoors because of the stormy weather.
"I asked the school district to shut off the sprinklers today, but I forgot to ask them to turn off the rain," said Principal Charlene Metoyer.
The event moved from the playground to the school's multipurpose room, where instead of a parade to show off each class and the students' sea-creature-themed costumes and matching purple shirts, they took turns standing up to model them.
"Maybe next year, we'll skip the sea creature theme and switch to a land-based animal," said parent organizer Julie Means.
Last year's event was also rain-soaked, but the thunder and lightning this year required the event to be indoors.
Harbor View students spent the past few weeks seeking sponsors who would pledge money per lap. The event last year raised $50,000, including money from sponsors. Organizers didn't expect to raise as much this year, but they already brought in $14,000 from sponsors.
The money, organizers have said, is key this year because the school will not be organizing the annual Spirit Run fundraiser.
After the school-wide assembly to kick off the event, each class arrived in the multipurpose room for 10 minutes of running laps, with parents marking each lap as the students ran past.
"It's like a sea of purple urchins," said Jan Parker, the school's Parent Faculty Organization president.
Music blared as the children ran for five minutes, then took a water break, then ran for five more minutes.
Midway through the program, firefighters from the Corona del Mar fire station stopped by to give high-fives as the students ran past.
"The kids were a little disappointed because of the rain, but they are having fun," Parker said.
"They are having so much fun, they don't know the difference," added second-grade teacher Sabrina Ericastilla.
The older students were more competitive, bragging for days about how many laps they would complete.
"We'll beat everyone else," said sixth-grader Will Favreau.
Younger students like Portia Roberts were more about the fun.
"I think it's the best day — ever," she said.
Police find man passed out, revive, arrest him
A Newport Beach police officer found a man passed out with a syringe sticking out of his arm outside Javier's in Crystal Cove at 8:31 p.m. Tuesday, and after reviving him, the officer arrested him on suspicion of possession of Xanax, police said.
An officer found the man, 19, of Laguna Beach, after receiving a call about someone passed out in a 2008 Ford pickup truck, police said.
The officer arrived at the restaurant at 7832 E. Coast Hwy. and found the man, who was passed out in the truck. The officer tried to wake the man up and eventually broke a window to get to him, said Sgt. Steve Burdette.
After Newport Beach emergency crews cleared the man, he was arrested, Burdette said.
Pop Up Store pops on Coast Highway
The Pop Up Store has opened at 2747 E. Coast Hwy. at Goldenrod Avenue, selling gift items for all ages including products from local businesswomen and crafts makers.
Cards, candies, Twistbands, origami Christmas trees, candles and more are among the items, each hand selected by owner Jessica Frandson, the Corona del Mar woman who created Twistbands hair accessories. The shop will be open through the Christmas holiday season, with items priced between $5 and $50, and 5% of all retail sales going to benefit Casa of Orange County.