Communities & Clubs: Bringing all faiths together in thanks

The Newport-Mesa-Irvine Interfaith Council invites your family to the 15th annual Community Celebration of Thanksgiving Counting our Blessings at 7 p.m. Nov. 21 at St. Mark Presbyterian Church, 2200 San Joaquin Hills Road at MacArthur Boulevard in Newport Beach.

"The whole family will enjoy this Interfaith Celebration of Thanksgiving," said Rev. Julie Elkins, council president and pastor at Costa Mesa First United Methodist Church.

A reception sponsored by St. Mark Presbyterian Church will follow the celebration with cookies, coffee and punch, according to St. Mark Pastor Rev. Gary Collins.

Participating choirs are from Orange Coast Unitarian Universalist, Mesa Verde United Methodist Church, Baha'i Light of Unity, OC Glee for Kids and Marshall Island. The event will include scripture readings from the Christian, Islamic, Jewish and other faiths.

Admission is a donation of two cans of food per person that are to be donated for to Share Our Selves (SOS) and Families Forward. For more information, visit


Lions are Santa's helpers

The Harbor Mesa Lions Club is busy preparing for the holiday season with several projects. They will be donating gifts for parents and wrapping gifts for the children at the Westside's Boys & Girls Club Dec. 18. Various organizations donate toys and articles for the kids to purchase with points they have earned throughout the year. Lions wrap the presents the children have picked for their family members and, in some cases, for themselves.

The club is also sponsoring two families for the holidays by fulfilling wish lists and giving them gift certificates for food. Along with that, they are also collecting non-perishable food and donating turkeys to the American Family Housing organization, which assists the homeless and destitute families, and to the Second Harvest Food Bank program. For further information, visit please check the website:


Don't forget hearts and hands

The community is invited to join in Saturday at the 10th annual Hearts and Hands, a day of service at the LDS church, 801 Dover Drive, Newport Beach from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and sponsored by the Newport-Mesa-Irvine Interfaith Council. More than 600 volunteers from faith and community groups will work on service projects for local and international charities as well as our armed services. No experience necessary, according to the organizers. Students can earn service credit hours for their participation. Lunch will be available for $5 from Newport Beach firefighters. For more information, visit or e-mail


Turkeys and eagles next week

In next week's Community & Clubs column, I take a break on writing about service clubs and community groups to announce the Newport Mesa Turkey of the Year — the person or persons who in Newport Mesa have behaved like a turkey and a person or persons who have soared like an eagle in 2010.


Thought for the day

"I admire individuals with character, and I judge character not by how a person deals with their superiors, but mostly how they deal with their subordinates, and that, to me, is where you find out what the character of a person is."

—Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf



You are invited to attend a service club meeting this coming week to learn more about opportunities for service. Most clubs will buy your first meal for you as you get acquainted with them.


5:15 p.m.: The Rotary Club of Costa Mesa meets at the Ramada Inn & Suites, 1680 Superior Ave., Costa Mesa. Visit

5:30 p.m.: The Soroptimist International of Newport Harbor Area meets at the Zonta Clubhouse, 245 Fischer Ave., Suite A/C, to hear Mona Ruiz discuss her book "Two Badges, The Lives of Mona Ruiz."

6 p.m.: The Rotary Club of Newport Balboa meets at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club, 1601 Bayside Drive, Corona del Mar, for an informal night of camaraderie, games and fellowship. Visit



7 a.m.: The Costa Mesa Orange Coast Lions Club meets at Mimi's Café, Newport and Harbor boulevards.

11 a.m.: The Exchange Club of Newport Harbor meets at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club, for a program by Julie Chambers of the Child Abuse Prevention Center on "Infant Home Visits." For more information, visit

Noon: The Kiwanis Club of Newport Beach-Corona del Mar meets at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club. For more information, visit

The Rotary Club of Newport Irvine meets at the University Club, 801 E. Peltason Drive, Irvine. For more information, visit

The Kiwanis Club of Costa Mesa meets at the Costa Mesa Golf and Country Club, . For information, visit



7:15 a.m.: The Newport Beach Sunrise Rotary Club meets at the Five Crowns, 3801 E. Coast Hwy. , Corona del Mar, to hear from Newport Beach Mayor Keith Curry on the State of the City. For information, visit

COMMUNITY & CLUBS is published Wednesdays. Send your service club's meeting information by fax to (714) 921-8655, or by e-mail to

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