This handsome guy is Jax, a 1 ½ year old Great Dane mix looking for a new start in life. Before coming to the shelter, Jax was shuffled through multiple short-term homes and never quite got the chance to truly belong anywhere. Now, he’s ready to become a permanent fixture in an active household where he can really thrive. Could Jax be the match for you?
One year old Fondue is a happy little guy with a quirky personality to match. He enjoys outdoor activities and playing with his canine pals. Full of energy, Fondue is looking to find someone who loves to have as much fun as he does!
Mitsy is a big kitty with an even bigger personality. Her general hobbies include sunbathing, playing with toys, and ruling over everything in her cat domain. Mitsy would make a great companion and would do best as the only cat in a home where she can be the center of attention.
Five year old Matzo is a well-mannered canine who would make great addition to the family! Matzo loves to go for walks and run around and play in the yard with his other dog friends. He has a friendly personality, is well potty-trained, and would be good in a home with other dogs or kids.
If you would like to know more about the animals listed here, please call the San Clemente/Dana Point Animal Shelter at (949)492-1617, or visit with them at 221 Avenida Fabricante, San Clemente.
Call me old fashioned, but I believe that physical photos are a medium worth preserving. When I recently sat down to put together my daughter’s baby book, I thought of how printed images might at times seem like a thing of the past. But then I can’t imagine showing off my family photos by scrolling through all the images I posted to Facebook once upon a time.
Diana Schmitt of the San Juan Capistrano-based Accents Portraits by Diana understands the desire for individuals and families to preserve their most precious memories in more than merely a digital format. She has spent the better part of 30 years specializing in family portraits, wedding photos and capturing the most priceless of moments in all types of life celebrations.
With nearly 30 years of experience, Diana’s focus is families, and she always aims to deliver “extraordinary customer service.”
“Diana is amazing,” says Heidi Hitt. “She has taken so many special pictures over the years for me and my family. They all turn out so beautifully. I am so blessed to have someone I can trust to help me capture special moments in time. Everybody loves when we send out our Christmas cards; they can’t believe how beautiful the pictures are. Thank you Diana for all the beautiful memories.”
Accent Portraits by Diana and San Juan Photo and Digital is located at 32281 Camino Capistrano,
Suite C-104 in SJC. They can be reached at (949) 661-6465 or online at
April 3, 2017 in Segerstrom Hall
Segerstrom Center for the Arts welcomes back legendary composer and performer YANNI in a special appearance during An Evening In Conversation With Yanni and his Piano on Monday, April 3, 2017 in Segerstrom Hall. On his upcoming tour, YANNI, one of the most celebrated composers and multi-gold and platinum-selling artists of our time will provide fans with the unprecedented opportunity to talk with him directly. For decades, YANNI has thrilled audiences worldwide with his dynamic live performances.
Now, for the first time, he is stepping off the concert stage to give his fans the chance to interact with him on a more intimate and personal level. Rather than having the backing of an orchestra, this tour will feature YANNI and his piano, which he will play from time to time throughout the show. YANNI will share his experiences traveling the globe, insight into his creative process, his understanding and interaction with cultures from around the world, and his experience planning and performing in mega shows in some of the most revered places on earth. Fans will be encouraged to ask any question that is on their mind.
Single tickets start at $59 and are available online at SCFTA.org, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa or by calling (714) 556-2787. For inquiries about group ticket savings for 10 or more, call the Group Services office at (714) 755-0236.
Boots is a 10 year old kitty looking for a new lease on life. Don’t let her age fool you; This little lady is full of life and just loves having company! While she does get along well with other cats, Boots’ favorite pastime is spending the afternoon in the lap of a friendly human. She would make a spectacular companion for someone looking for some real one-on-one time.
Seven year old Cindy is quite the little sweetheart. She absolutely loves to be around people and will happily climb into your lap if given the chance. With a mellow personality and lovable charm, Cindy is sure to win your heart!
Merlin is a blue-eyed Dutch neutered male rabbit. One of several hundred rabbits brought into the OC Shelter from a single residence, Merlin was transferred to the San Clemente Dana Point Animal Shelter as part of A Rescue Mission program. Though he can sometimes be a bit shy to start, he’s actually a very sweet bunny who loves getting pets and cuddles. Merlin is a well-mannered rabbit with excellent litter box habits and would be a great bunny for a first-time owner!
This little cutie is Caviar, a 2 year old Miniature Pinscher mix ready to be your very best friend! She is very friendly and always on the lookout for a comfy lap to sit in. With her happy mild-mannered personality, Caviar would make a great pet for family members of all ages.
If you would like to know more about the animals listed here, please call the San Clemente/Dana Point Animal Shelter at (949)492-1617, or visit with them at 221 Avenida Fabricante, San Clemente.
If you’ve got a nagging ache in your neck, or persistent back pain that makes you twinge when you move – you’re not alone.
Nearly 40 million people in America deal with chronic, severe pain, and sometimes medication isn’t enough to treat it. About 30 percent to 40 percent of these people use drug-free, complementary medicine treatments during any given year, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. The government agency recently analyzed 105 clinical trials on alternative pain treatments. They found that certain treatments may help ease common aches and pains as part of an overall wellness plan.
Dr. Samuel Bederman, an orthopedic spine surgeon at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, spotlights the following five drug-free treatments:
Yoga: Promoting flexibility, strength and deep relaxation, yoga can ease pain by building a supple body and easing stress. If you have chronic pain, consider signing up for a yoga class. Let your yoga teacher know, as some poses may be more beneficial for you than others. Yoga is also good for back pain.
Acupuncture: This ancient Chinese treatment relieves pain when needles are stuck into points throughout the body; the location of the needles depends on where the pain is originating. Treatment may require multiple, ongoing session. Acupuncture is good for knee pain caused by osteoarthritis and back pain.
Tai chi: Like acupuncture, tai chi also comes to us by way of China. It’s an exercise that consists of low-impact, slow and deliberate movements paired with focused breathing. As with yoga, you should make sure your chronic pain doesn’t contradict any tai chi moves. Tai chi is good for knee osteoarthritis.
Massage therapy: It’s hard not to feel good after a message, thanks to its pain- and stress-relief powers. There are many types of massage out there so you can pick one that will most benefit your particular pain problem. Ideally, find a state-licensed massage therapist. Massage therapy can also help with neck pain.
Relaxation techniques. Living with chronic pain can be stressful, so relaxation techniques are a valuable way to manage that while instilling a positive mindset. Try deep breathing, meditation, progressive muscle relations, positive visualization or art therapy. Relaxation techniques are also good for headaches.
Dr. Bederman is a double fellowship-trained orthopedic spine surgeon at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, part of the St. Joseph Hoag Health network of care.
The Beach Boys
MARCH 3 – 4, 2017, 8:00 P.M.
In the pantheon of pop, few groups have enjoyed the success of The Beach Boys. Their close vocal harmonies and “Good Vibrations” conjure timeless memories of surf, sun and endless summers. Known for such irresistible chart-topping hits as “Surfin’,” “Fun, Fun, Fun,” “I Get Around,” “Kokomo,” “Help Me Rhonda” and “California Girls,” these Rock and Roll Hall of Famers have performed more concerts than any major rock band in history.
Pacific Coast Wine Festival
MARCH 11, 2017, 5:00 P.M.
The 10th Anniversary Pacific Coast Wine Festival will be a sensational wine auction and dinner, featuring extraordinary wine tasting of exceptional wines from the premier wine producing regions of the world, imaginative silent-auction offerings including fine wines that range from cult and storied artisanal wines to wines that need no introduction, a gourmet dinner with exquisite wine pairing and a live auction of rare and exceptional wines and extraordinary travel opportunities. The 2016 event featured: Aubert Wines, BOND Estates, Château Cos d’Estournel, Château Mouton Rothschild, Château Margaux, Herb Lamb Vineyards, Hundred Acre, Marcassin, Peter Michael Winery, Scarecrow and Vega-Sicilia.
Fritz Lang’s Metropolis
MARCH 12, 2017, 3:00 P.M.
Fritz Lang’s sci-fi masterpiece influenced such films as “Star Wars” and “Blade Runner.” Experience this cinematic tour de force projected on the big screen while organ virtuoso Peter Richard Conte performs the unforgettable soundtrack live.
Piano Masterclass with Zhang Zuo
MARCH 22, 2017, 7:00 P.M.
World-class pianist Zhang Zho hosts a multi-generational masterclass in the intimate Samueli Theater. Participants will include a high school student, a college student and an adult pianist from the community. All will prepare their own performance for Zhang Zuo, who will then work with each to continue to refine and develop their musicianship. Tickets to observe are $10 and there is limited seating, so get yours soon! Learn how to ENTER THE COMPETITION to be one of the 3 masterclass participants!
For information, visit www.pacificsymphony.org or call (714) 755-5799.
April 23, 2017 in Segerstrom Hall
Segerstrom Center for the Arts welcomes the return of Mexican American singer and songwriter Lila Downs and the Center debut of one of Colombia’s leading bands Monsieur Periné in a special double bill concert on April 23 that will feature an array of global music and genres all while incorporating Latin influence into the mix.
Multiple Grammy Award-winning artist, Lila Downs, has one of the world’s most singular voices and innovative approaches to music. Reinterpreting the roots of music, she weaves various musical forms such as blues, jazz, soul, cumbia, bolero, rock, even rap and klezmer music, with traditional Mexican and native Mesoamerican music, creating an exciting fusion of international sounds. Singing in both Spanish and English, and sometimes the indigenous languages of the Mixtec, Zapotec, Maya and Nahuatl, she eloquently reflects the diverse cultures of Oaxaca, Mexico and the U.S., in which she grew up. Backed by her long time band, La Misteriosa, comprised of international multi-instrumentalist musicians, Downs’ offering will include new songs from her forthcoming album, and favorites from the vast repertoire cultivated throughout her illustrious career.
Single tickets start at $29 and are available online at SCFTA.org, by calling (714) 556-2787 and at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa. For inquiries about group ticket savings for 10 or more, call the Group Services office at (714) 755-0236.
In the 5th century BC, Sun Tzu compiled thirteen chapters worth of military strategy and tactics. At a great many business schools today, The Art of War is required reading for those looking to conquer the corporate ladder, or succeed in courtrooms across America.
What is missing from the classic text however, is the ever necessary treatise regarding the age old battle that rages in those homes of our American tycoons of industry and their corporate lawyers. That classic skirmish against cracked, aged, moldy grout in bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms.
And the war cry? Care. How to care for something that seems to so easily wear away, discolor, or become damaged. Luckily for you, a field medic exists on the battlefront, and the doctor is in.
Elvin Jenkins has been in the business since 1992, and as part of a nationally supported network, is bringing The Grout Doctor to your front door. Specializing in tile, stone care, and yes, grout, Elvin and his team can renew, restore, and protect your home -- or change the look of it dramatically!
“We want you to love your tile and stone areas every day, not just the day they were installed. While tile is a non-porous material, the grout between the tiles absorbs everyday spills and dirt, almost like a sponge. If not cared for, over time, you’re going to have a problem.”
Offering free evaluations and a written estimate, The Grout Doctor would like the chance to take a look at each option open to you as a homeowner. If you’re on a budget, “restoration is less expensive, can often be completed in one day, and is good ‘green’ karma for you.”
Repair, regrouting and recoloring are also options. Locally owned and operated, Elvin and his team use their own proprietary products to ensure the highest level of quality care for your home environment.
If you were to search “grout” on Pinterest, there greets you an endless scroll of advice from home improvement bloggers, 5,467 photos of subway tile, and a healthy handful of posts regarding the newest trend on the housing market: bold, colorful grout.
(Including but not limited to glitter grout. Look it up, it exists.) Clearly the battle is raging -- choose to attack on the home front by letting the Grout Doctor fight for you.
For a FREE estimate, call Elvin and his team at (949) 336-1893 or visit www.GroutDoctor.com
My husband and I are huge fans of mixing our family’s travels with historic adventure, always mindful of creating wonderful memories while crafting an itinerary that blends fun with a bit of education. When we recently decided to trek to the Grand Canyon, we discovered what we believe to be the very best way to experience the majesty and magnificence of what is considered to be one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World (and a trip that required very little “planning” on our part): An all-inclusive package that encompassed accommodation at the warm and welcoming Grand Canyon Railway Hotel and scenic (and entertaining) train travel to the South Rim.
Chartered in 1866 to build west from Springfield, Missouri, the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway ran along the 35th parallel, eventually connecting Amarillo to Pecos, Pecos to New Mexico, Barstow to San Diego. Along this 7,500 miles of track was the unwavering line between Williams, Arizona and the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. First afforded status as a Forest Reserve in 1893, the park did not receive national status until three years after the creation of the National Park Service itself, in 1919. Today, the park receives nearly five million visitors. Roughly one hundred times more than the 44,000 visitors it averaged from 1919-1920, and right around the time that the Santa Fe became famous for its passenger trains.
Known for covering long distances of line without access to water, the Santa Fe was one of the first rail companies to purchase diesel locomotives for freight service, which housed on-line eating houses and dining cars operated by Fred Harvey. Harvey’s legacy is vast in Williams and the Grand Canyon for his gem of architectural elegance placed directly on the rim of the crevasse: El Tovar.
Between the historic town of Williams and Grand Canyon National Park lies the Grand Canyon Railway and Hotel. Built in 1908 by Harvey House Corp., the hotel had a variety of guest rooms, a formal dining room, cafe, bar, and a news room. A perfect compliment to the Williams Depot, the hotel still stands today. The Railway itself has been taking guests into the heart of the canyon for over a century, and riding it has become much more than just a way to get from point A to point B: it is a time machine and a postcard - a wonderful way to experience the romance of travel by train.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the oldest poured-concrete structure in the state of Arizona, the Williams Depot is and has been an oasis for visitors travelling to and from California along the main line for decades. En route to the canyon are varied landscapes, including pine forests and sprawling prairies with ample opportunity to spot antelope, the California condor, fox, deer, bald eagles and wild horses. Onboard, colorful railway characters bring history to life with mock train robberies and strolling cowboy musicians with a keen sense of humor lead passengers in old-time sing-alongs. Our kids were particularly enthralled by a Western gunfight portrayed by authentically raucous actors prior to boarding and a train robbery on the return trip.
Once we arrived at the log-cabin style Grand Canyon Depot in the South Rim, we found ourselves within easy walking distance of many popular scenic overlooks and most of the village’s historical buildings, which we had plenty of time to explore at our leisure during the four hour “layover” before boarding the train once again for the journey back to Williams.
After the two-hour ride to the northern terminus of the line, experience the luxury of a bygone era at the newly refurbished Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. Standing just next to the historic depot and a skip, hop and jump away from downtown Williams, those looking for an easy way to see the grandeur of the park can purchase a getaway bundle, including everything from train travel to a hotel suite or spot in the Grand Canyon RV Park. With a variety of amenities, the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel features 298 rooms, complimentary wi-fi, an indoor pool, hot tub, and delicious dining options at the Grand Depot Cafe and Spenser’s Pub. Open year-round, the hotel and train operate under the unpredictable weather of the Canyon, and guests can find comfort and refuge any time of year - from late-summer thunderstorms to winter’s snow and ice (aboard the Railroad’s Polar Express). For more information, and to book your adventure today, visit www.thetrain.com.
A friend warned me that if our family spent a weekend at Alisal Guest Ranch and Resort, we’d end up booking our next trip before we even left the property.
Nestled in the scenic rolling hills of the lush Santa Ynez Valley, Alisal is a full-service 10,000-acre, all-inclusive resort/dude ranch experience that combines the elegance and comfort of the western lifestyle with a working cattle ranch where 2,000 head of cattle and 100-quarter horses leisurely graze.
Beautifully manicured lawns characterize the grounds of the main “resort” - connecting 73 California ranch-style cottage studios and suites to restaurants and recreational facilities.
Since 1843 when conquistador Raimundo Carrillo received a land grant and became the first cattle rancher of the Santa Ynez Valley, the Alisal (meaning “grove of sycamores” in Chumash, a Native American language) established itself as a working cattle ranch. In 1943, the property was purchased by The Jackson Family and evolved into a guest ranch. The exclusive hideaway opened its doors to summer vacationers with 30 initial guestrooms converted into bungalows.
The Alisal’s rich heritage and idyllic setting make it a haven for rest and relaxation and one of American’s most prestigious properties boasting a well preserved civilized past. Couples honeymoon here, families enjoy reunions and executives find a welcome respite from urban life.
In our case, we were looking for a brief respite from the day-to-day without having to travel too far from home. While Alisal is only a three to four hour drive from Orange County, it feels worlds away – the property is blessed with an abundance of wildlife and hiking trails meander around the resort’s rich flora and fauna (nature lovers can take a self-guided hike through Deer Canyon where some 64 different animals including deer, possums, bobcats, mountain lions, wild boar and black bears reside).
Back at the ranch, children as well as adults can participate in the caring of the ponies, bottle-feeding the goats, calves, exotic miniature horses and sheep seven days a week at The Alisal Barn Yard. Because our kids (ages 8 and 9) were to be first-time horseback riders up to the historic Adobe Camp for pancake breakfast the morning after our arrival, we “practiced” riding around a corral atop a gentle horse that spends a few hours each day tethered to a tree so the resort’s youngest guests can have their parents lead them around the corral at their leisure). Kids can also participate in egg gathering, grooming and exercising the animals in the corral.
A recreation center unto itself, the 100-acre spring fed Alisal Lake, filled with bass; trout; and bluegill, offers “catch-and-release” fishing. You can rent a boat or fish off the dock – our son caught his first fish (a Bigmouth Bass reeled in with Daddy’s help) by casting (also with Daddy’s help) from the dock. This sportsman’s paradise attracts bird watchers and guests with canoes, rowboats, peddle boats, kayaks or sail boats. As one of two California properties to be an Orvis-endorsed fly-fishing operation, Alisal offers fly-fishing and boating lessons for children and adults.
Visitors rarely leave the Alisal during their stay and for good reason. Leaving at dawn, guests enjoy more than 50 miles of equestrian trails on horseback circling the magnificent hills and sycamore groves. Twice daily group rides, private rides and breakfast rides to the historicAdobe Camp round out a stay.
Aspiring equestrians can hone their riding skills at the corral with private lessons. Children delight in the Alisal Rodeo with stick horse and gunny sack races and boot relays in an authentic western arena.
Wranglers show off with quick draw demonstrations, calf roping and barrel racing. Following the rodeo is an extravagant western barbecue with live entertainment and traditional line dancing.
For those seeking more civilized pursuits, two 18-hole championship golf courses – the par 72, 6,500-yard Ranch Course and the par 72, 6,800-yard River Course with four lakes - provide impeccably manicured fairways and greens with spectacular views of the Santa Ynez River and nearby Santa Ynez Mountains. A full range of facilities and services are offered at both courses including a clubhouse, driving range, putting green and pro shop. Private and group lessons by PGA and LPGA professionals are also available.
A full-service Tennis Center with a well-equipped pro tennis shop is situated on a scenic area of the Ranch. Tennis buffs can choose from seven hard courts. Tennis professionals, one of whom is nationally ranked, offer both clinics and private lessons by appointment.
After a lengthy day of horseback riding, the Alisal’s outdoor heated swimming pool and adjacent eight-seat spa are the perfect way to unwind.
The Ranch Room, the resort’s restaurant, serves American and western style favorites. Guests enjoy a choice of a hearty a la carte American breakfast menu items that include Linguisa scrambled eggs over a Grilled Portobello Mushroom, savory Huevos Rancheros and the Alisal’s own Buttermilk Pancakes. A lavish Ranch Room breakfast buffet of Eggs Benedict and Corn Beef Hash is also served with freshly squeezed orange juice and homemade baked muffins, pastries and breads.
Dinner is formal (dinner jackets are required for the men - and a great excuse to get gussied up for the girls) and frontier-size portions of juicy barbecued steaks, tender prime rib of beef and the fresh catch of the day including swordfish, John Dory and Seabass are guest favorites. Specialty dishes such as Osso Bucco, Hickory Smoked Briskett and slow roasted Farm Raised Wild Boar are prepared with the freshest ingredients for the guests’ dining pleasure. The Alisal features a Modified American Plan. Menus are rotated seven days a week, year round.
At the historic Adobe Camp, the resort treats guests to a full ranch breakfast including buttermilk flapjacks, scramble eggs, bacon, sausage, ham and more complete with a whimsical performance by Jake Copass, resident wrangler and cowboy poet, accompanied by Dave Stamey, the Alisal’s award-winning singing cowboy on guitar.
Alisal’s 73 guest units are decorated in classic California ranch design and configured as either comfortable studios or spacious one-bedroom suites. Each unit, designed for maximum privacy and comfort, includes a wood-burning fireplace with complimentary firewood; high-beamed ceilings; Western art; refrigerator; coffee maker (coffee and tea supplied in rooms), and filtered water dispenser. To maintain the cozy, quiet atmosphere, there are no in-room televisions or telephones; however, complimentary wireless Internet is available throughout the ranch.