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Updated: April 29, 2014

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HUNTINGTON BEACH...The Orange Coast Gakuen Japanese Language School at Brethren Christian School held an earthquake and fire drill for their young students on Saturday, January, 25th. so they would know what to do if an emergency strikes. Photo:OCG


HUNTINGTON BEACH...Saturday is the final day for Hunters to play! If you haven't done so yet, tell everyone you can about the HUNT - there are tons of prizes to be won. Players can still make it to all the businesses in just one day, so it's not too late. The form drop off location is Mangiamo's Gelato at 122 Main Street. Mangiamo's closes at 10:00pm on Saturday so people have all day to play.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...At the opening of their newest Huntington Beach branch on January 23rd, 2015, Wells Fargo showed their commitment to supporting the Huntington Beach community with a $10,000 contriution to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Huntington Valley. The donation will provide much needed support for the Club’s Twilight Education Project. The Twilight Project serves more than 450 low-income English language learners each year in Huntington Beach, Fountain Valley, and the surrounding areas. Through this program, the whole family gets the help they need to succeed! Families are bused from 25 neighborhood bus stops to Golden West College. There, parents receive free English as a Second Language classes and job skills training, while children get free tutoring, homework help, and preschool instruction.

When asked why Wells Fargo’s support means so much to the Club, Club CEO Tanya Hoxsie says, “100% of the families we serve in Twilight are low-income. Many are getting by on less than $1,000 each month. Parents can’t afford to pay for language classes, tutoring or preschool on their own. To make the program accessible to the families who need it most, Twilight is completely free of charge. That means that we count on community support to help us make it all possible. We’re so thankful for Wells Fargo’s amazing generosity, so we can keep helping local families in 2015!”

Boys & Girls Clubs of Huntington Valley is one of the leading Boys & Girls Clubs both locally and nationally. With six locations in Huntington Beach and Fountain Valley, the organization makes a difference to 9,500 children and their families each year through a wide array of programs for children ages 6 weeks old through high school. Major services include: before and after school programs with bus transportation to and from 30 schools, licensed childcare for children 6 weeks to 5 years old, sports leagues, performing arts programs, and family support programs. Contributions from the local community help keep programs affordable and enable the Club to offer free programs and a sliding scale for fee-based programs so children in need have access to fantastic quality youth programs.

HUNTINGTON BEACH...The Public Works Department and All Green Electronics Recycling will host a free electronics recycling event this Friday and Saturday, January 30 and 31, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is a drive-through event in the parking lot at the Huntington Beach Library located at 7711 Talbert Ave., Huntington Beach, in the west parking lot adjacent to the Theater and Goldenwest Street.

All schools, businesses, and residents from Huntington Beach and other neighboring cities are welcome. Items to be collected and recycled include computers, monitors, televisions, cell phones, MP3 players, printers, microwaves, cables, wires, laptops--anything electronic! This is a perfect opportunity to clean out the garage or warehouse, get rid of those old dust-collectors, and help protect the environment at the same time. The non-profit Friends of the Library will receive a donation based on the total weight of TV’s and computer monitors collected.



HUNTINGTON BEACH,,,Christopher Martinez, also known as "Firefighter Chris," is used to putting on his gear to fight fires in the Fives Cities area. According to Martinez, his gear weighs about 50 to 60 pounds. In February, he will be putting on his firefighting gear to help in a different kind of fight. Martinez said, "It is exactly what I would be wearing, what I will be wearing during this marathon."

Twenty-six miles in full turnouts, to remind two young boys in the community they are not alone.

Nine year old Phinneus Mckenna was diagnosed last January with a rare stage 4 brain and spine cancer. His treatment started with 22 days of radiation followed by six 6-week cycles of intense chemotherapy. He is hospitalized at least two weekends per month. His mother, Jill Mckenna, said the community support is amazing.

"We know that people are there with us, fighting with us and that they are inspired by Finn's story," she sad. "It just gets you through."

Two year old Mateo Cota was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia 11 days before his second birthday. He is currently undergoing multiple types of chemo.

With cancer comes a great financial and emotional burden. Martinez said helping raise money would help their families, but the event symbolizes something greater.

"I wanted to think of something to do for them, because at the end of the day, they have a pretty extreme fight with their chemotherapy, so I wanted to make sure I put myself in a condition of extreme and to show them that I'll fight with them, I'll train with them, I'll stay strong with them," he said.

"When somebody just opens up their heart to you and wants to do something for your family and for Phinneus it just touches you," said Jill Mckenna.

Mateo's mom, Erika Cota, said of Martinez, "What he said and why he wants to do it is absolutely beautiful. So we are just thankful."

Martinez said completing the 26 mile marathon in full gear will be hard. He doesn't have a time goal, but he does have a finish line goal. He hopes finishing the race will help Phinneus and Mateo cross their own finish line.

Martinez will be running the Huntington Beach Marathon on February 1. His goal is to raise $10,000 to split between the two boys. Photos/Story:Krysta Stark


SOUTH ORANGE, NJ...Seton Hall University is pleased to announce that the following students qualified for the Fall 2014 Dean's List. To make Dean's List, students must have at least a 3.4 GPA and can get no grade lower than a C.

Ariana Dispalatro of Huntington Beach (92648)

Jamie Froning of Huntington Beach (92646)

One of the country's leading Catholic universities, Seton Hall University has been a catalyst for leadership - developing students in mind, heart and spirit - since 1856. Home to nearly 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students and offering more than 80 rigorous majors, Seton Hall's academic excellence has been singled out for distinction by The Princeton Review, US News & World Report and Bloomberg BusinessWeek. Seton Hall, which embraces students of all religions, prepares its graduates to be exemplary servant leaders and caring global citizens. Its attractive main campus is located in suburban South Orange, New Jersey, and is only 14 miles by train, bus or car to New York City, offering a wealth of employment, internship, cultural and entertainment opportunities. The university's nationally recognized School of Law is prominently located in downtown Newark. For more information, visit


CHARLESTON, SC...Members of The Citadel South Carolina Corps of Cadets were recognized for earning Gold Stars in the fall 2014 semester. Gold Stars are awarded by The Citadel to cadets and students who have made a grade point ratio of 3.7 or higher for their work accomplished during that semester.

Stuart Morton of Huntington Beach, CA 92648 was among 456 other Gold Star recipients including cadets, veterans and active duty students.

The Citadel, founded in 1842, is a public, coeducational military college in Charleston, S.C., that offers a classic military education for men and women seeking a college experience that is meaningful, academically strong and is focused on educating and developing principled leaders for a strong military and a global workforce.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...This year marks the 40th anniversary of Orange Coast Gakuen Japanese Language School (OCG)  in Orange County and the 5th year that OCG became an independent school.

L-R: Kiyomi Chinen, Hiroko Kataoka, Masako Douglas and Bob Uriu. Without these dedicated people Orange Coast Gakuen would not have seen its 40th year


Bob Uriu and Linda Sugiura

On Saturday, January 24, 2015 several classes were held at Brethren Christian School where OCG now meets on Saturdays, From pre-school age to pre-teens came Saturday to learn their curriculum that are given by a group of California State University Long Beach professors headed by Professor Hiroko Kataoka, nationally recognized as a leader in teaching language. Linda Sugiura has given 11 years to OCG.

Inside one of the younger student classes


Japanese Language classes:

Japanese language classes for 5 – 18 yr olds (two learning tracks: JHL – Heritage; JFL – Japanese as a Foreign Language)

Japanese language classes for high school (various levels)

Japanese language classes for adults (various levels)

Pre-school Age club (Mikan Club) for pre school children (head start program for children to learn Japanese language)

Meets Saturday mornings

Various cultural activities and events are included.


Japanese culture classes:

Japanese Calligraphy Class for Orange Coast Gakuen students (Shodo)

Flower Arrangement Class for Adults (Ikenobo) – meets Saturday mornings

Flower Arrangement Class for Orange Coast Gakuen students (Ikenobo)


Jayden and Reece play in their pre-school classroom

Students and teaching staff attended Saturday's additional open house to learn what to do during an earthquake. The Earthquake and Fire Drills help staff deal with an emergency. The school's Safety Committee and school staff regular first aid training.

Saturday's drill featured a fire drill for students, some of the younger ones, it will be their first time to take part in the drill.



HUNTINGTON BEACH,,,The Surf City Marathon will be held Sunday February 1, 2015. Pacific Coast highway will be closed from Beach Blvd to Warner Ave from 1 a.m. to 2 p.m. Other side streets listed on the attached map will be closed from 6 a.m. to approximately 9:45 a.m.


HUNTINGTON BEACH...On Saturday, January 24, 2015, local businesses and shoppers at Landmark Plaza at the corner of Atlanta and Magnolia, welcomed a new neighbor, a branch of Wells Fargo Bank.

L-R:  Wells Fargo representatives Cassidy Nguyen, Christine Vollstedt and Keith Kobata


Wells Fargo representatives Lisa Woolery, Corporate Communication specialist, Keith Kobata, President of the Greater Orange County Division and Christine Vollstedt, Store Manager, welcomed the public to the official grand opening inside the new branch.

A replica of a Wells Fargo stagecoach stands in front of the bank branch


Outside in front of the bank were several game booths for the kids and one manned by the officers of the California Highway Patrol. They were on hand to talk to parents about child safety and what to do to keep their children safe from predators. Parents and kids saw a small sized Wells Fargo stagecoach that carried passengers around the country before horseless carriages became a common sight.

Officers from California Highway Patrol speak to parents on child safety


Inside the modern decorated interior the public was able to speak to bank representatives at their desks about financial matters or receive answers about their accounts, deposit cash and checks or withdraw a few bills from their account. Along one side of the branch several trays of free food waited for the public as part of the grand opening day.

This new Wells Fargo branch is LEED-certified (green) for the environment. Special lights that dim when sun is bright and other equipment that is environmentally friendly to Mother Nature is built into this branch.

Many of the Wells Fargo branches has achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. The Landmark Plaza branch was certified under the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (EB:OM) program, and was among 91 stores certified within the company’s real estate portfolio this year. The certification of this banking store is part of the largest simultaneous certification in the history of the LEED program.

“At Wells Fargo, we’re committed to serving our local communities, and that means being good environmental stewards where we do business,” said Wells Fargo Greater Orange County Area President Keith Kobata. “We’re proud that our eighth Huntington Beach branch is part of a company-wide initiative to be environmentally minded in all we do, and we’re eager to look for more ways to become more sustainable to benefit our customers and team members.”

Specifically the Landmark Plaza Huntington Beach store provides the following environmental benefits:

  • Water saving plumbing fixtures and control devices to help cut water usage by up to 30%.*
  • Energy efficient light fixtures and HVAC system to help reduce energy use by up to 21%.*
  • Light harvesting system which helps cut energy use by automatically adjusting indoor lighting for maximum use of available daylight.
  • Bike racks to help reduce pollution impacts from automobile usage.
  • Increased use of recycled content, like porcelain tiles containing 40% recycled content and furniture containing up to 71% recycled content.
  • Fully recyclable materials such as counter surfaces comprised of recycled bottles and cement, carpet, and window shades divert these materials from the landfill at their end of life.
  • Sustainable grown, harvested and manufactured wood materials.
  • Low toxic paints and other materials and strict air quality management practices during construction contribute to a healthier environment.
  • Waste diversion during construction which kept much of our construction waste from entering the landfill.

*Benefits compared to conventional stores of the same type.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...On Thursday, January 22nd, at about 2:40 PM, the Huntington Beach Police Department responded to the area of Bolsa Chica Road and Heil Avenue regarding an injury traffic collision involving three vehicles.
Arriving officers located the involved vehicles near the intersection. One of the vehicles, a gold 2005 Nissan Altima, had driven through a chain link fence of a vacant property and collided with a storage container. The driver and sole occupant was unresponsive.

Huntington Beach Fire Department paramedics responded and used heavy rescue equipment to remove the driver. He had major injuries and was transported to UCI Medical Center where he was admitted in critical condition. HBPD officers were able to contact his family who responded to the hospital. The driver, an 89 year old male from Huntington Beach, later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital. His name is not being released at this time until next of kin can be notified.

The other involved vehicles included a silver 2006 Chevy Silverado 2500 and a white 2013 Toyota Prius. The driver of the Chevy Silverado, a 28 year old male from Glendora, was uninjured. The driver of the Toyota Prius, a 23 year old male from Norwalk, was also uninjured. None of the involved vehicles had any passengers. Both drivers were interviewed and released at the scene.

Based on the preliminary investigation, it appears the gold Nissan Altima was exiting Albertson's parking lot at 16522 Bolsa Chica (Hot off the Grill) and turning onto Bolsa Chica when it collided with the silver Chevy Silverado which was traveling northbound on Bolsa Chica. After the initial collision, it appears the silver Chevy collided with the white Toyota Prius which was stopped in the northbound left turn lane of Bolsa Chica.

The investigation is ongoing and is being conducted by the HBPD Major Incident Reconstruction Team (M.I.R.T). No citations have been issued and no arrests have been made at this time. Investigators would like to speak to anyone who might have seen the events leading up to and including the collision.

Anyone with information about this collision is asked to contact Huntington Beach Police Accident Investigator Josh Page at 714-536-5670 or Accident Investigator Robert Barr at 714-536-5666. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 714-960-8825.



CINCINNATI, OH...Nicholas Silver of Huntington Beach earned a Bachelor Of Science with a focus in Criminal Justice Management from Union Institute & University.

Union Institute & University is a non-profit, accredited, private university specializing in adult and distance education since 1964. Union strives to engage, enlighten, and empower students in a lifetime of learning and service. The university's transformational and socially relevant programs promote creative and critical thinking, and connect scholarship with real-world practice. Flexible online classes, brief residencies, classroom experiences, and hybrid models of instruction lead to undergraduate, masters, and doctoral degrees. Union graduates, including 14 college presidents, leaders in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, members of the United States Congress, and the first female prime minister of Jamaica, promote Union's legacy of utilizing education to transform lives and communities.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...Michele Burmaster, owner of Surf City Fit Club always wanted a different type of gym. Gyms can be a scary place. Pretty much every other gym in HB exists to serve people who are fit. They provide a culture which can oftentimes be very exclusionary. Everything from the decor to the equipment to the attitudes of trainers and other members is designed to appeal to people who are basically professional gym-goers, which is great- if that's what you love.

Michele Burmaster, owner of Surf City Fit Club


What these other gym owners don't know is that there is a large population of people out there who want to get in shape or stay active and mostly just feel out of place in a lot of gyms they've been to.

At Surf City Fit Club we strive to be the gym that anyone can walk into and feel safe, empowered, encouraged and happy to move their bodies, get active and have a great and effective workout. Surf City Fit Club is located at 16651 Gothard Unit G in Huntington Beach. Phone (714) 696-9348 or

"My philosophy is that fitness should be available, accessible and not intimidating or discouraging. We create a safe place for people from all walks of life to come out and get moving. Our members are consistently building strength, gaining endurance and becoming more awesome by the day in an environment completely free of extremes," said Burmaster.

"We live by the fact that all bodies are good bodies. That fitness does not look one way or another. That health can only be gauged by what your body can do and not necessarily what it looks like. If we are ever going to improve the health of our community, we need to stop the body shaming, stop the food shaming and stop the fitness shaming. We need to remove extremes from fitness and make it available for everyone," said Burmaster.

Surf City Fit Club is on a mission to change the face of fitness in Huntington Beach. It's time to move like our bodies were designed to move and let everything else fall into place. We've been doing it for a year now and it's working. Our members are incredible, strong and empowered and their results speak for themselves. We will never ask you "What's your excuse?" but we will say "Wow! Look what you did!"  Photos:HBNews/SurfCityFitClub


LITTLE ROCK, AR...Christopher Bills of Little Rock, received a Juris Doctorateduring a ceremony for December 2014 graduates of the William H. Bowen School of Law at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Parents are Craig and Mary Bills of Huntington Beach, Calif.. Bills earned an undergraduate degree from Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colo.

Bowen School of Law graduates can be found on the federal and state benches, in the halls of Congress, the General Assembly and the Attorney General's office, Fortune 50 companies, and prominent law firms.

With more than 11,000 students and 100 programs, UALR offers learning, research, service, social and career opportunities that can only be found at a metropolitan university located in Arkansas' capital city.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...At approximately 9 a.m. of Saturday, Jan. 25th. vehicle traffic was rerouted around a traffic accident at Edwards Street and Slater Avenue. Police officers directed traffic while one of the vehicles waslifted aboard a tow vehicle.



HUNTINGTON BEACH...The Fair Housing Foundation will be holding a Walk-In Clinic for housing issues at the Huntington Beach City Hall- Economic Development Conference Room – 5th Floor at 2000 Main Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92648 from 10am-12pm on January 26, 2015. This service is free and open to the public. Fair Housing Foundation will have a housing counselor present to counsel residents with housing issues or questions. This can include landlord/tenant disputes, lease agreements, discrimination, repairs, evictions, security deposits, disability modifications, rent increases, occupancy issues, etc..

The Fair Housing Foundation services residents of the city of Huntington Beach. They are contracted by the city of Huntington Beach and receive funds through the Community Development Block Grants. They educate the public about Fair Housing rights and responsibilities through workshops, trainings, and community events. FHF provides mediation and counseling services through our housing assistance hotline 1-800-446-FAIR and walk-in clinics. They also investigate issues of discrimination related to housing.




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