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People & Places

2014: An Icon of Surf and Sea

Hobie Alter will forever be celebrated not only as a pioneer in the surfing and sailing industries, but also for his enduring kindness and generosity. By Sharael Kolberg Hobie Alter, pioneer of foam-core surfboard production, began shaping boards as a teenager in the garage of his parents’ Laguna Beach summer home....

2013: Where Locals Gather

The Marine Room Tavern may have changed hands, but music and memories continue to be the main items on the menu. By Bruce Porter Modest almost to a fault, the Marine Room Tavern is a cherished chapter in Laguna’s storied history. The second bar in town to get a liquor license,...

2012: Decades at the Dirty Bird

The legendary Sandpiper Lounge is turning 70, and we’ve got the dirt on the Bird. By Debbie Lavdas The legendary Dirty Bird bar and local institution turns 70 this year. Chances are you’ve ended up there many a night, whether you meant to or not. We celebrate its classic dive ways...

2010: Zen & The Art of Motorcycle Helmets

Troy Lee has transformed his lifelong passion of art and motorcycle racing into an impressive international business empire. By Bruce Porter On paper Laguna Beach resident Troy Lee’s rise to the upper echelon of the business world appears unlikely. As a youngster he had an unstable family life, whimsically moving from...

2009: Q&A With Mark Christy: My Kind of Town

Lifelong Laguna Beach resident and entrepreneur Mark Christy shares his passion and his vision for the city with which he's enjoyed an enduring and steadfast love affair. By Lauren Simon If Forest Avenue is the heart of Laguna Beach, then certainly Mark Christy lives his life in sync with the rhythm...

2007: Riding the Wave of Success

Why guitarist and surfer Donavon Frankenreiter has the coolest life ever. By Moira C. Reeve Donavon Frankenreiter’s fingers sweep along the fingerboard of the ancient Slingerland acoustic, bending notes like a bluesman twice his age. He’s just noodling on the guitar, but the little riffs and patterns sing out clear and...

Seal of Approval

Over the last 50 years, the Pacific Marine Mammal Center has rescued thousands of pinnipeds, taken part in important research and educated countless schoolchildren. By Sharon Stello   It all started five decades ago with a harbor seal, stranded on the shore in Newport Beach. A little girl told lifeguard Jim Stauffer...

A Novel Adventure

Take a look back at John Steinbeck’s sojourn in Laguna Beach. By Joe Yogerst   Between the world wars, Laguna Beach evolved into a small but thriving West Coast version of Paris—a gathering place for artists, writers and actors searching for both a literal and metaphorical place in the sun. One of them...

Helping the Helpers

Laguna couple Norman Rest and Debra Kottke started Lido Paddle Project to provide a healing experience for veterans and front-line workers. By Sharon Stello   Norman Rest and Debra Kottke understand the restorative aspect of time spent out on the water, whether gliding across the sea in a kayak or keeping balanced...

10 Minutes With … Heidi Miller

The owner of Tight Assets and World Newsstand reflects on the journey that brought her to Laguna and what she loves about life in this town. By Sharon Stello   A Laguna resident for more than 40 years, Heidi Miller wears many hats in town, from running the Tight Assets boutique and...