VIA Presents ‘The Truth about Your Company Culture’

| Community | June 14, 2019

The Valley Industry Association will be presenting “The Truth About Your Company Culture… and what it’s really costing your business” at their monthly business luncheon on Tuesday, June 18, 2019 at 11:45 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Valencia, located at 24500 Town Center Drive in Valencia. Celebrated speaker Jorge Lopez of J&M Entertainment will present information designed to help business leaders evaluate their company culture and provide tools for improvement.

“One question business leaders should ask themselves is how engaged or disengaged are their employees, and what is that costing them,” said Lopez, a seasoned professional in the events and entertainment industry. “More importantly, what can they do about it?”

“In a period of low unemployment, it’s important to not only retain your best employees, but to also attract and recruit new employees,” Lopez said. “In the VIA presentation I’ll also share how to retain your best customers.”

Corporate culture refers to the shared values, attitudes, standards, and beliefs that characterize members of an organization and define its nature, according to Inc. magazine. It is rooted in an organization’s goals, strategies, structure, and approaches to labor, customers, investors, and the greater community.

“While every company has a culture, not all cultures help a company reach its goals,” said VIA Board Chairwoman Teresa Todd. “VIA members can realize a competitive advantage in developing and growing their business by recognizing their own culture and how it may or may not contribute to the bottom line. The information provided in this month’s Speaker Series luncheon promises to have actionable takeaways.”

“VIA is known for its timely and relevant programming,” said Kathy Norris, VIA CEO. “Each month we develop programs around topics that are relevant to our local business community.” Future programs include the second annual State of the State on Tuesday, July 23 featuring California State Senator Scott Wilk and Assemblymember Christy Smith, and the return of the VIA CEO Forum on Tuesday, August 20, 2019.

Reservations are required. Tickets are available at www.VIA.org/calendar or by calling 661-294-8088. For more information, contact the VIA office at admin@via.org.

About the Valley Industry Association (VIA)

The Valley Industry Association of Santa Clarita represents business interests throughout the Santa Clarita Valley. VIA provides its members – industrial, commercial and service companies – the opportunity to collaborate on a broad range of business issues. In addition to being a legislative advocate, VIA serves as a one-stop shop for relevant business information, supports local educational initiatives, professional development, and provides networking opportunities. Visit www.VIA.org for more information.

New Art Exhibit At City Hall To Showcase  ‘Quilts For All’

| Community | June 14, 2019

Works created by various artists from The Santa Clarita Valley Quilt Guild will soon grace the walls of the First Floor Gallery at City Hall in the newest exhibit starting this week called “Quilts for All.” The exhibit will be on display through October 10. The community is invited to celebrate the new exhibit at a free art reception being held on Wednesday, June 26, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at City Hall. Come enjoy light refreshments, live music, meet the artists and discuss art.

This Santa Clarita Valley Quilt Guild promotes the art of quilting through sharing, friendship, education and meaningful service to the community. In 2018, the Guild developed several projects for the residents of Santa Clarita, including the donation of 27-bed quilts for Habitat for Heroes, 78 quilts to Home4Families (one for each new homeowner that closed escrow), 350 placemats for seniors who receive home food delivery and much more.

The First Floor Gallery in City Hall is located at 23920 Valencia Boulevard. City Hall business hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

For more information regarding the art exhibit, contact Jeff Barber at jbarber@santa-clarita.com or call (661) 290-2256. For details regarding other city art exhibits, visit SantaClaritaArts.com.

City Launches Community Survey To Inform Parks And Recreation Work Plan

| Community | June 13, 2019

In an effort to update the Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan to a fluid Work Plan, the City of Santa Clarita has partnered with True North Research, Inc., to conduct a community survey soliciting feedback and information about the programs and services the city offers. The results of the survey will inform the Parks and Recreation Work Plan, which will then be integrated into the city’s next comprehensive strategic plan.

The community survey will measure residents’ satisfaction, priorities and concerns as they relate to parks and recreation opportunities in the City of Santa Clarita. A random sample of city residents will be invited to participate in the survey via mailed information, email invitation or telephone call. Residents who may be selected to participate are asked to please complete the survey at their earliest convenience.

Some residents may have already received an emailed link to participate in the community survey. This email, from SantaClarita@surveynetwork.com, was sent from a trusted source and should be treated as legitimate.

For more information about the City of Santa Clarita’s Parks and Recreation Work Plan or the ongoing community survey, contact (661) 284-1407.

Valencia Nanoscience Students Take 2nd in ‘Shark Tank’ Competition

| Community | June 13, 2019

Two different teams from Valencia High School’s Honors Nanoscience class competed in the finals of the California NanoSystems Institute’s third annual Nanosystems Competition, with one team awarded second place.

In what was a “Shark Tank” style of competition, middle and high school students from across Southern California pitched their cutting-edge nanoscience-based business ideas to a panel of judges who were venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and UCLA faculty and staff. The students were required to not only explain the science behind their idea but to also present their business plan to bring their idea to market.

Valencia students Brock Bowers, Lauren Chen, Isabelle Goralsky and Nicholas Lottermoser claimed second place and $1,000 with their idea “UltraClear,” a microplastic filter for drinking water marketed to millennial parents and health conscious consumers.

The second team of Cody Aung, Andre Baghdassarian, Noah Besina and Makayla Vicente pitched their idea called “CellShock,” a sheer thickening fluid case to better protect valuable electronics like phones, laptops, and medical devices.

“This competition provides a unique opportunity for my Nanoscience students to apply their imagination, scientific knowledge, communication skills, and business principles in a high stakes real world context,” said Daniella Duran, teacher of the Honors Nanscience class from which the teams were created. “To prepare we partnered with Mr. Mifflin’s entrepreneurship class to get feedback on the business aspects before the final pitch which helped students see the value in cross curricular collaboration. The chance to pitch an idea to a venture capitalist is an opportunity most of us adults never get, which makes it so exciting.”

Teams began this process back in January when they submitted a 450-word abstract summarizing the need that was being filled, the current state of the art for the need, and their new nanotechnology-based solution idea. Ten teams were then selected to participate in a kickoff event the following month at UCLA to meet their graduate student mentors and get a crash course in Design Thinking.

Carousel Ranch to Host 23rd Annual Dinner, Auction, and Children’s Riding Demonstration August 24

| Community | June 13, 2019

With the general invitation mailing for Carousel Ranch 23rd Annual Dinner, Auction, and Children’s Riding Demonstration set to hit mailboxes this week, organizers confirmed they are already two-thirds of the way to a sold-out event. The event, presented by Princess Cruises Community Foundation, will be held on Saturday, August 24, 2019 starting at 6 p.m. on the grounds of Carousel Ranch located at 34289 Rocking Horse Road in Agua Dulce.

“It is both amazing and overwhelming how this event has grown to what it has become today, and especially for the support we receive from the community for our kids and the work that we do,” said Denise Redmond, executive director of Carousel Ranch. “Each year we sell out earlier than previous years, which is testimony to the support and encouragement we are so fortunate to receive toward fulfilling our mission.”

Since 1997, the Ranch has provided equestrian therapy for children with disabilities. The nonprofit added its Ready-to-Work vocational training program three years ago for young adults with special needs.

For this year’s Heart of the West event, over 420 seats have been reserved to date, out of a maximum 650 seat capacity. “Our sponsor list continues to grow,” said Redmond.

“This is where the magic happens,” Carousel Ranch Board President Marianne Cederlind said, referring to the Ranch property that hosts the annual event on its vast grounds. “The camaraderies of the people who attend create a unique opportunity for the community to gather, witness first-hand the transformative potential of equestrian therapy, and empower guests with the capacity to open their hearts to the children of Carousel Ranch.”

The evening begins by showcasing four student horseback demonstrations in the outside arena area. “Our students inspire me to be a better person,” said Cederlind. “To witness the sheer joy equestrian therapy brings to their lives despite the incredible personal challenges they face puts my own life into perspective.”

“Heart of the West is a magical evening with the excitement of fabulous live and silent auctions, great food, music, line-dancing and, most important, a demonstration by the kids that we have all come together to support,” Cederlind said. “These beautiful children serve to remind us all that anything is possible.”

A dinner catered by Salt Creek Grille will be served during a live auction, and more than 250 silent auction items will be available for bid. The festivities continue after dinner as guests experience “Heart of the West After Dark” in the Western Town, which features a live band, dancing and casino games.

Sponsorship opportunities range from $375 to $8,000; individual tickets are priced at $100 for general seating and $200 for VIP seating. Guests are encouraged to reserve early. Visit www.carouselranch.org for more information or call 661-268-8010.

Summer Beach Bus Service Returns

| Community | June 13, 2019

With the summer season right around the corner, residents can board Santa Clarita Transit’s annual Summer Beach Bus with service to Santa Monica on Saturdays and Sundays. Santa Clarita Transit is excited to bring back the popular service that allows residents to visit the beach using the city’s air-conditioned commuter express buses through Sunday, September 1.

Summer Beach Bus fares are $3.00 each way for children and adults and $1.50 each way for Senior Citizens and persons with disabilities. Riders may pay using the Token Transit mobile app, stored value on their TAP card or exact cash. Monthly passes will not be accepted.

Buses will depart at approximately 8:40 a.m. and return at 4:30 p.m., ensuring a full day of beach activities without the stress of driving on the freeway and finding parking.

Two bus routes will depart each Saturday and Sunday from various stops in Santa Clarita and take residents to the Santa Monica Pier. Shuttle departure stops include:

Canyon Country Park
Soledad Canyon Road and Solamint Drive
Soledad Canyon Road and Shangri-La Drive
Via Princessa Metrolink Station
McBean Regional Transit Center
Railroad Avenue and 15th Street
Newhall Metrolink Station
Newhall Avenue and Valle Del Oro
Newhall Avenue and Sierra Highway

Travelers may bring their beach chairs, coolers and surfboards. For more information on Summer Beach Bus routes and times, visit SantaClaritaTransit.com.

Explore Santa Clarita Aboard The Summer Trolley

| Community | June 13, 2019

The City of Santa Clarita’s Summer Trolley, which takes guests to and from Six Flags Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor each day for free, is now offering evening service from local hotels to Town Center Drive. Thanks to the city’s partnership with participating hotels and tourist destinations, the Summer Trolley gives tourists a great way to explore Santa Clarita and gives residents the opportunity to get around town without having to worry about driving or parking.

The free Summer Trolley runs each morning from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., picking up riders from four locations: Hyatt Regency Valencia, Westfield Valencia Town Center, Courtyard by Marriott/Embassy Suites and the Holiday Inn Express. Return trips to those locations depart once every hour from Six Flags each evening beginning at 6:00 p.m. with the last trolley leaving at 10:07 p.m.

The new nighttime service is a great way to shop, eat and play at the Westfield Valencia Town Center (Hyatt Regency Valencia stop). Some of the popular attractions at Westfield include The Canyon Santa Clarita, Saddle Ranch Chop House, The Dudes Brewing Company and The Cheesecake Factory, plus satisfy that sweet tooth with delectable desserts at Crepes de Paris and Paradis Ice Cream.

“We are fortunate to live in a city which prioritizes efficient public transportation options,” said Mayor Marsha McLean. “Whether it’s our new PACE Bike Share program or the returning Summer Trolley service, Santa Clarita continues to offer unique ways to explore our city for visitors and residents.”

See the full Summer Trolley schedule at VisitSantaClarita.com. For more information about the Summer Trolley service, contact Evan Thomason at (661) 286-4167 or by email at ethomason@santa-clarita.com.

Dial-A-Ride Transit Service Now Offers Real-Time Alerts

| Community | June 7, 2019

The days of wondering when your bus will arrive are over. Santa Clarita’s Dial-A-Ride and Access services now provide trip reminders and alerts to patrons via text, email or phone call in real-time through the new Ripple service. This new program further enhances the service that operates over 400 trips a day.

Patrons can now opt into the Ripple program the next time they schedule a trip, by simply mentioning it by name to their Customer Service Representative and choosing any combination of notifications including automated voice call, text or email. By using Ripple, patrons can receive reminders the day before their trip including the pick-up and drop-off location, scheduled pick-up time and trip status. Then, on the day of their trip, patrons will get a notification when their ride is approaching. This aims to provide a more efficient service for residents by reducing wait times and preventing missed trips.

Dial-A-Ride serves as a curb-to-curb paratransit service for qualified elderly or special needs customers, in addition to the general public. Patrons may schedule a trip for any purpose within the Santa Clarita Valley, including visiting a friend or relative, going to a movie or visiting the doctor.

Those interested in taking advantage of the city’s Dial-A-Ride service can make a reservation one to seven days in advance by calling (661) 294-9327. Visit SantaClaritaTransit.com for more information about Dial-A-Ride and Access Services.

Why the Busiest People are the Most Productive

| Community | June 6, 2019

If you want someone to help you with something, ask the busiest person you know. This is true for several reasons:

  • The busiest person has built a reputation around getting things done
  • A busy person who is successful has developed systems for everything they do
  • Busy people take responsibility for their actions and that leads to productivity.

Of course, there are exceptions. Some people are “crazy busy” and run around in circles. Others have mastered the art of looking busy and avoid being asked to help. And then there is the person who honestly believes everything they are engaged in has merit, while the truth is that they could use the 80/20 Rule to spend 80 percent of their time on the 20 percent of their activities that are the most important and meaningful.

Time Management
Time is allotted to all of us in equal servings. We all have the same 24 hours in each day. Yet how we choose to spend these hours will mean the difference between living the life we choose and constantly chasing the freedom that having enough time may bring. What follows here is a five part system I have created to ensure your time is well spent on every task and activity you engage in. These five parts include:

  • Prioritizing
  • Evaluation
  • Scheduling
  • Delegation
  • Follow Through


By taking the time to prioritize what we wish to accomplish each day, we set ourselves up for success. Take a look at the to-do list you created or updated last evening. What one or two things are the most important ones for you to complete today? Move them to the top of your list. What can be moved to the bottom of your list or carried over until tomorrow or later in the week? Which items can be delegated to others or eliminated completely?

Once your to-do list is categorized by level of importance, you will take the next step in this process. This is the time to evaluate each item on your list for today in terms of how long it may take you to see it through to completion, the people and resources that will be needed, and how you will approach it so that you can do your best possible work in the time you have allotted.

Scheduling Your Time
Scheduling your time is an important step often omitted by business owners. Think back to a time when you worked at a job or were involved in a project that depended on everything happening within a stringent time frame. I highly recommend embracing this concept as you work towards your goals. Make appointments with yourself to ensure completion of important tasks and projects. Keeping a schedule honors your time and allows you to give each task and activity the respect it deserves.

Delegation involves outsourcing work to others. We must embrace this concept in our lives and businesses to achieve our goals in a timely manner. Most of the time, those helping me are able to complete the tasks much better than I could do myself, and definitely more quickly. In other cases my helpers are working on things I have no idea how to do, like various aspects of technology. If it is technical or clerical, it makes no sense at all for me to get involved. What can you delegate and to whom, beginning today?

Follow Through
Putting the first four of the strategies in the system I am sharing with you here will not be as effective as they could be unless you follow through with everything you do. This takes time and effort that I find most people are not willing to implement and include in their personal and business life plan. You will be different because you will believe what I am telling you here. You understand that becoming a high performer and achiever in life requires more than the basics.

The busiest people are the most productive, not by accident, but due to the fact they are more purposeful with everything they do. You may want to cut out this article and post it in your office or even on your refrigerator to remind you of how simple it can be to level up your productivity this summer.

Connie Ragen Green lives in Saugus and has been working exclusively on the internet since 2006. Local Business Marketing: Making the Phone Ring for Businesses Everywhere is her latest book and was released by Hunter’s Moon Publishing in June of 2019. All of Connie’s titles are available in paperback at Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, at your local bookstore by request, and also for Kindle. Find out more by visiting http://HugeProfitsTinyList.com and download an audio recording for 2019 at http://NewRulesforOnlineMarketing.com.

Questions? Email Connie at crgreencrgreen@yahoo.com and be sure to put Home Business Question in the subject line. Your question and answer will be included in a future article.

Graduated Student Navigates Language Barriers, Loss

| Community | June 6, 2019

Two years ago, on the day after Thanksgiving, Almira Javier and her family were joking around during breakfast when her grandfather had a heart attack at the table.

His sudden passing was a devastating blow to Javier and her family, whose move to Valencia in 2014 was made possible thanks to his family-based immigration petition.

“He was my inspiration,” said the 19-year-old who was born and raised outside of Manila in the Philippines.

During the brief time Javier lived with her grandfather, the two became very close.

“He was diabetic and weak,” said Javier, who administered his insulin shots because her mother was afraid of needles. “He would say, ‘Oh my gosh, you have very soft hands. You are a natural!’”

Javier, who had always been interested in healthcare, took every chance to ask questions to the nurses who cared for her grandfather.

Losing her grandfather was especially challenging for Javier, who was also struggling with adapting to her new life in America.

“Making friends was hard,” said Javier. She was 14 when she started attending Hart High School.

“I thought being a new kid in an American school would be just like in ‘Mean Girls’ and it was.”

Although she had studied English in the Philippines, Javier hardly had the chance to practice and spoke with an accent.

“I was bullied,” she said. “I realized people were using me to do homework and errands. It was a bummer.”
Javier also had to learn how to navigate the American education system by herself.

“My parents didn’t know the system,” said Javier, who is the oldest of two. “I couldn’t ask anyone. All of that helped me become independent.”

Fortunately, Javier started making friends and things started clicking into place. Javier started thinking about going to college.

“I felt a lot of pressure as the first person in my family to go to college in America,” said Javier.

The main reason Javier’s parents decided to leave the Philippines was so that she and her younger sister would have more opportunities.

“My parents saw potential in us and wanted a better future for us,” said Javier. “I love my country, but there isn’t much progress.”

It was a Hart counselor who introduced her to the First-Year Promise (FYP) program at College of the Canyons that waives tuition and fees for new full-time college students during their first year of study.

After taking the college’s assessment test and FYP summer counseling class, Javier enrolled in six classes for her first semester in fall 2018.

“During my first week, I was freaking out and overwhelmed,” recalled Javier, who sought the help and guidance of her FYP counselor, Tony Law.

“I went to him every week,” said Javier. “He was so patient with me and gave me reassurance and told me about great on-campus resources like The Learning Center.”

Javier also credits COC English professor Alexandra Dimakos with helping her transition to college life as a first-generation American.

“She taught me that it’s ok to ask questions and make mistakes,” said Javier, who was enrolled in Dimakos’s First-Year Experience 100 class. “She recommended I watch TV shows with closed captioning so I can improve my English and listen to podcasts.”

Javier took her advice and began progressing in her English coursework.

“Almira stood out to me because she was the only student in class who took the initiative to speak to me frequently after class and ask me for guidance on a variety of topics like how she can improve her English skills, study strategies for earning a high grade in her biology class, creating course schedules for future semesters, and getting more involved on campus,” said Dimakos. “It was clear she was genuinely invested in her education and her own success and she was willing to go above and beyond to reach her goals. The maturity, insight, and dedication Almira demonstrated impressed me a great deal and I wish I had more students like her!”

While attending COC, Javier worked the evening shift at Marshalls and volunteered more than 200 hours at the Definitive Observation Unit at Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital.

When asked how she managed to juggle it all, Javier laughs.

“I don’t know, but I had lots of support from my parents,” said Javier, who graduated on Friday, May 31 with an associate degree in liberal arts with an emphasis in social and behavioral sciences.

This summer, Javier will be applying for a coveted spot in the college’s competitive nursing program. She has already received a $500 LaVerne Harris Memorial scholarship, which she hopes to apply to her nursing studies.

Her goal is to become a registered nurse in gerontology, a decision inspired by her grandfather.

“Everything I do,” said Javier, “I do it for him.”

Portions Of Central Park To Be Closed During Boots & Brews

| Community | June 6, 2019

To enhance the attendee experience and increase security during the Boots & Brews Country Music Festival at Central Park on Saturday, June 15, the City of Santa Clarita will temporarily close Central Bark dog park. Additionally, the Central Park trail, which takes residents through Central Park and connects to Newhall Ranch Road, will be closed for trail maintenance on June 15.

The closures for Central Bark and the Central Park Trail will begin on Friday, June 14, at sunrise. Both will be reopened to the public on the morning of Sunday, June 16.

Residents are asked to adjust their trail and park usage during this closure. The Five Barks dog park at Golden Valley Park (27227 Five Knolls Drive) and Canine Country, located near the Santa Clarita Skate Park (20840 Centre Pointe Parkway) will be open for public use during the Central Bark closure.

For questions or concerns, contact the city’s Arts and Events division at (661) 250-3785.

Canyon Country Library ‘Lunch at the Library’ Program

| Community | May 31, 2019

This summer, kids and teens under the age of 18 can enjoy free summer meals and fun activities at the Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Library, as part of the Santa Clarita Public Library’s Lunch at the Library program. The program will be held each week from June 10 to July 26, Monday through Friday, between noon and 1 p.m. The Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Library is located at 18601 Soledad Canyon Road. Children under 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult. No registration is required.

The city encourages community members to take part in this program that will nourish the bodies and minds of local youth. While children are at the library eating lunch, they can also participate in other fun activities the library puts on throughout the summer such as story time, crafts and the Summer Reading Program.

Lunch at the Library is made possible by a grant from the California State Library and a partnership with the SCV School Food Services Agency. For more information about the Lunch at the Library program, visit santaclaritalibrary.com or call (661) 259-0750.

In the Presence of Giants

| Community | May 30, 2019

by Harry Parmenter

I did not serve my country as did my father and grandfather. Regardless, I felt compelled to attend the Memorial Day Tribute at Eternal Valley on May 27, 2019. I had been once years ago when the ceremony was held near the entrance gate. This time the ceremony was held atop the hill boasting a glorious view of the SCV on a spectacular holiday morning. What a special, moving event this was, commemorating those who played a pivotal role in making America the greatest instrument of liberty in human history. Looking around, I found myself in the presence of giants.

Vets were from the Vietnam War, Korean War and the big one, WW II, the great generation who saved the world from the tyranny of a German madman and the threat to the east. It occurred to me as I sat there that without the iron will of American forces 75 years ago, we’d be speaking another language and living a life without freedom.

Presiding as master of ceremonies that day was Bob Kellar, Mr. Santa Clarita in every way, shape and form. A flyover of four WWII AT6 aircraft kicked things off, three of the planes continuing straight after passing overhead, the fourth veering off to the north trailing a beautiful white plume of smoke. Following a powerful invocation by Pastor Elaine Cho came the posting of the colors. On paper, this may sound dull, but watching it, experiencing it, and again at the conclusion of the ceremony when the colors were retired, a palpable sense of power, glory and greatness filled the air. Greatness not of a jingoistic nature, but that of the quiet behemoth our country is, never the aggressor but ready, willing and able to fight—and prevail—when pushed to the limit.

Following the Pledge of Allegiance led by Korean vet John Coleman and a haunting bagpipe played by a fair-haired young lass came our always stirring National Anthem sung by West Ranch High’s Savannah Burrows. An emotional presentation of flags to grave markers highlighted the work of local Girl and Boy Scout chapters who had spent the previous day planting over 6,000 flags across the cemetery on the remains of the dead, including those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Bill Reynolds, one of the “Boys of ’67,” Charlie Company, delivered his message before segueing to keynote speaker Mike Garcia, an Iraq vet for the U.S. Navy. The 350+ of us present—soldiers who were “over there” wherever “there” was depending on when human life and freedom was at stake; families, friends, children too young to yet take the measure of Memorial Day’s meaning and magnitude; local dignitaries, including all City Council members; delegates sent by our recently elected representatives Ms. Hill and Ms. Smith, who were somehow unable to attend; these people and more, many of whom worked hard to ensure the day’s success, as well as random local citizens like myself were drawn to the tribute as to a close encounter with history.

Lieutenant Commander (and Saugus High grad) Garcia’s speech expanded a theme quoting John Stuart Mill: “War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth a war, is much worse…A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.”

As I let that quote sink in, I found it more relevant than ever. Many people’s lives revolve around the me-all as end-all, personal identity and the rights of the individual trumping all. I sat in a back row watching, listening and just feeling Memorial Day’s import, surrounded by people whose simple, understated lives do the talking. People who shun the spotlight, seek only a peaceful life of fulfillment achieved by giving unto others, working collectively towards the greater good of a nation indivisible by the cult of personality glamorized by the media megaphone and those who diminish the fact that we are secure only due to the efforts of generations of quiet Americans comprising the military now and then.

Following a rifle corps salute, the mournful notes of “Taps” filled the air and the crowd united in silent contemplation. A benediction and the strains of the bagpipe encoring with “Amazing Grace” closed the proceedings.

As speaker Garcia articulated, and a pair of Vietnam vets I spoke with afterward amplified, Memorial Day isn’t really about barbecues and mattress sales, it’s about remembering fallen comrades and honoring these great Americans of character, integrity and action who serve, and served. They go about their business without ego or vanity, every race, creed, color and gender, bonded by the values symbolized by the stars and stripes.


Gary Peterson: COC’s Wildly Successful Golf Coach

| Community, Sports | May 30, 2019

No California junior college coach has been more successful than Gary Peterson. He has guided College of the Canyons golf teams to 12 state titles (nine men, three women) in his 35 years. On the men’s side, that includes four in the last seven years and includes 2019, when the Cougars beat the field by 18 strokes. That matches what the women did last fall.

That’s not all. The men haven’t finished lower than second in seven years.

“We’ve had a pretty good run,” Peterson said.

Like any wildly successful coach, there is a method to his genius. John Wooden had his pyramid of success. Peterson has a three-pronged approach. Without giving away any trade secrets, Peterson said golf is a metaphor for life.

“You have to be honest, work hard and practice to be good,” he said.

A look at the three points:


“It’s easy to cheat in golf,” Peterson said. “Look at our president. He cheats all the time.”

But at Canyons, as is often the case on in golf, it is up to the individual to keep his or her own score, not drop a ball or kick it back into bounds. The honor system is in effect.

That doesn’t mean there isn’t any cheating going on. From time to time, a player will confidentially tell Peterson he or she saw a teammate do something outside the rules. Peterson will investigate by closely watching that player. He also will tell him/her that the behavior has been brought to his attention. If Peterson catches it, one of two things happen. If it’s during a practice, he will “rip them a new one, and if it happens again, they’re off the team.” If it’s during a match, the termination is immediate.

Peterson has kicked one player off a squad – not for cheating but for burying a putter on a green. The termination was still immediate.


Once, Peterson’s rosters were almost entirely made of local golfers. That was the case when the Cougars won their first men’s state title, in 1993. Four of the six that carded 792 at Monterey Peninsula Club were from Hart or Saugus high schools.

Earlier this month, none of the golfers were local; the winner was from Japan, two were Frenchmen, one was Australian and one was from Lancaster. There was only one Santa Clarita player on the roster.

“If I didn’t have to go international, I wouldn’t go international,” Peterson said. “If I could be assured of a local team, I wouldn’t go outside the neighborhood.”

The reason is simple: As the valley got bigger and golfers got better, they started receiving NCAA Division I and II scholarships. This makes Peterson have to work harder to fill a roster.

Not that he’s having too much trouble. He carried 23 this year, although not everyone played (more on that later).

Peterson also has to figure out where to play. Very few courses let the golfers tee off for free, meaning Peterson have to figure out how to stretch his $10,000 green-fee budget across two programs. He said golfers typically are charged between $10 and $18 per round, a deep discount to be sure, but if each player typically is on a course three to four days a week, fundraising is a must.

Of the 10 courses Peterson said the teams frequent, only Sand Canyon and Valencia country clubs allow free rounds. He said Sand Canyon has granted 10-12 days of free rounds, but Valencia only twice a month for a maximum six players.

“We have to watch it carefully,” he said. “I smile a lot and say, ‘Thank you, sir.’ ”

Players also are expected to volunteer at various events and tournaments, often at Valencia. Peterson said the men’s team typically engages in long-drive and beat-the-pro competitions but also might act as witnesses on certain holes or fill groups that have no-shows.


With 23 on the men’s roster but only six on the course for any tournament, the competition to actually play is fierce. Only the toughest can play, and only 12 played in tournaments this season.

It really is a survival of the fittest. In Peterson’s system, all the golfers play five days a week for four weeks, and every score is counted. The golfers with the six lowest scores play in the first tournament, which for the men is often COC’s lone home contest, the start of February at Valencia. Of the six, the three with the lowest scores automatically compete in the next match; the other three go back into what Peterson calls “the pit,” which is made up of all the golfers who averaged 76 strokes or better.

For the rest of the season, rounds on Wednesday and Friday are counted toward which six will play the next tournament. Again, the top three play the following match and the bottom three go back into the pit.

“You start out and go bogey-bogey-bogey, a young man’s inclination is to just give up,” Peterson said. “But to say, ‘I’m not going to give up. I’m going to focus. I don’t want to go into the pit,’ it hardens them. It will make them aware of their ability to recover. It makes them a strong individual because they don’t give up.”

This year, only four golfers competed in every match, but the competitiveness had its intended effect. By the time the state tournament came around, they were so battle-tested that the pressure of a state tournament was just another leisurely stroll around the course.

It also makes champions. Four times has a COC golfer won an individual state title (one woman, three men, including Nobuhiko Wakaari this year), and COC has become like a breeding ground for Division I and II schools.

It’s normal now for Peterson to recruit an international player who will come for one or two years – or in the case of Jones Comerford last year, one semester – and move on to a larger school. Comerford is now at South Dakota State, but Peterson said he has sent numerous players to San Diego State, San Jose State, Cal State Northridge, Cal State East Bay and Cal Poly.

“D-I coaches know we have an extremely internal competitive team,” Peterson said. “They have to compete against themselves to compete in a match. That’s why we’re so good.”

Creativity Advocacy – Creativity and Mother’s Day

| Community | May 23, 2019

Creativity expressed through childbirth reveals the nature of Creativity in its purest form. Human beings have been reproducing for millennia, yet not one child has ever managed to exactly mimic another, not in thoughts, or genes, or mannerisms, or feelings, or life experience. Most parents find it amazing that their children are so diverse in spite of the fact that they derived from the same DNA pool. This is novelty at its best! The formula for making babies has been simple, unchanged, untampered with. That there is no end to this resource of Creativity suggests that there is also no end to the inventions and artistry that we Create. As a species, we continually master our Creativity through the cycle of life itself.

Scientists can pinpoint the moment an embryo’s fingernails sprout; ultrasound can observe the twitch of an eyelash; scales can measure the intake of nutrients to the newborn’s body; genes can be split to the chromosome and analyzed down to the molecule, but no one can explain the life force itself. Similarly, experts on Creativity can research the artists, interview the scientists, run brain scans on highly productive creatives, trace childhood histories, but no one can reach into the depth of what Jung calls the collective unconscious and determine its make-up or discern the Might which incites Creation. It is as profound as childbirth, an activity which once we are fully engaged in, eliminates our own will, providing a channel, like the birthing canal, for an idea to emerge, for insight to inspire, for beauty to be felt.

Once I experienced the overwhelming phenomenon called motherhood, I felt a deep satisfaction with my life. I had to wade through 13 daily dirty diapers and dustpans full of cheerios to find it, but contentment breathed in between the stacks of dishes and layers of snot. My crazy aspirations for artistic productivity seemed to disappear as each day managed to offer a fulfillment of its own. It’s as if I was content to connect with a higher Creativity, and abide in the kind of significance that reaches beyond time, generations, cultures, symbols.

When appreciating a great work of art, or piece of literature, one must take into account the historical references and cultural metaphors in order to properly interpret the work. But everyone recognizes the divinity of a baby and everyone reaches out in the supermarket or at the park to reflect on and recommence with that which has gotten lost in the shuffle of adult life. Babies, toddlers and children follow the heartbeat of Creativity—the imagination, and it isn’t until they grow up that they replace it with logic, systemized thinking, and safety. Only brave creative spirits break through the adult bondage of society’s sleepy train-rides to pioneer their own way. But babies remind us of what we once were, each one of us, and their slobbery reminiscence comforts us in the world of reason and daily grind, confirming that at our very core, our essence, we are them. If we don’t have the courage to become artists, or inventors, or writers, we can bear children. We can experience the enormity of inspiration and the grandest level of Creativity, and so we do.

Immediately following my fourth child’s first birthday, which punctuated the flow of my creative juices by way of human reproduction, I went out and bought a potter’s wheel.

“Why?” my partner inquired, lugging the enormous kick wheel from the truck with the help of two men. “You’ve never done ceramics a day in your life!”

“They gave me a good deal.” I justified. “And they threw in the kiln for fifty bucks.”

It was just my way of keeping the channel open.

~An exceprt from Maternallyours, a boutique book for Mother’s Day

College of the Canyons Offers Summer Camps

| Community | May 23, 2019

Youth Summer Soccer Camp

The College of the Canyons men’s and women’s soccer programs are inviting boys and girls in kindergarten through eighth grade to participate in the 2019 Youth Summer Soccer Camp, with two sessions running this summer.

Staffed by coaches, players and alumni from the men’s and women’s soccer programs, the camp offers a high-caliber curriculum that will create a uniquely fun learning environment for players wanting to build and improve their soccer skills.

By combining skill-emphasized training sessions, player-centered drills, scrimmages and small-sided games, the camp’s focus is on player skill development, balance, coordination and endurance, with an emphasis on building confidence in young soccer players.

All participants will receive a COC Soccer Camp T-shirt and soccer ball. Players should bring their shirt and soccer ball to practice each day, while also providing their own cleats, shin guards, soccer socks, sunscreen and water.

Camp sessions will be jointly led by COC men’s soccer head coach Phil Marcellin, COC women’s soccer coach Justin Lundin, as well as a staff of coaches from local high school and club teams.

The 2019 COC Youth Summer Soccer Camp will run during the following dates and times:

Session 1 — June 24-27 – 5 to 8 p.m. (Monday through Thursday)
Session 2 — July 15-18 – 5 to 8 p.m. (Monday through Thursday)

All camp sessions will be held at the state-of-the-art COC soccer facility located on the college’s Valencia campus.

Registration for individual players is priced at $125. Families with more than one camper can receive a discount of $25 for each additional child that registers. Campers registering as part of a team (minimum of five players) will be charged $100 per player, but will be required to register together.

All proceeds directly support the COC men’s and women’s soccer programs. To register for the 2019 COC Youth Summer Soccer Camp, visit COCsoccercamps.com and complete the online registration form.

Swim Camp Registration Open

The College of the Canyons swim & dive program invites swimmers ages 8 to 18 to participate in the 2019 COC Swim Camp with two sessions running this summer.

The camp is open to swimmers who can perform all four competitive strokes (freestyle, back, breast, butterfly) in a group workout environment. Sessions will be led by COC swim & dive head coach Sean Kakumu, his staff of assistant coaches and student-athletes from the college’s record-setting swim & dive program.

Each four-day camp session will provide attendees with an opportunity to learn new techniques, strengthen current skills, and meet new friends. The philosophy of the camp is to create a fun-filled atmosphere that promotes the development of the total swimmer.

The Session 1 camp is open to children ages 8-14 and will introduce the fundamentals necessary for future swim competition and/or a lifetime of recreational swimming.

The Session 2 camp is open to high school swimmers ages 15-18 and will reinforce fundamentals while emphasizing performance, speed, and race strategy, with a goal to push the swimmer to the next level of competition.

Taking grade and age into account, each camper will be evaluated on the first day of camp and placed into a group that will allow them to maximize their opportunity to improve.

Both sessions will involve two workouts a day plus classroom instruction. Session 2 will feature more intense workouts. Each camp session will conclude with an intra-squad meet on the last day where swimmers can apply the knowledge they have learned over the previous week.

The 2019 COC Swim Camp will run during the following dates and times:

Session 1 — June 17-20 – 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Monday through Thursday)
Session 2 — June 24-27 – 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Monday through Thursday)

All meetings will take place in the college’s West P.E. natatorium, located adjacent to the baseball field on the COC Valencia campus. A $175 per player registration fee applies to each session. Campers who register prior to the May 26 early registration date will save $25 per camper (registration must be received by 5 p.m. PST Sunday May 26).

Families with more than one camper can receive a discount of $25 for each additional child that registers by entering the promo code “Cougar2” at registration checkout. All campers will receive a camp T-shirt. A camp photo will also be provided at the end of the weekly session. Swimmers are encouraged to bring a refillable water bottle and a snack/light lunch every day.

All proceeds directly support the COC swim & dive program. To register for the 2019 COC Swim Camp, visit the COC Athletics website and complete the online registration form.

Space for this year’s camp is limited. For more information, contact COC swim & dive head coach Sean Kakumu at (661) 362-5894 or sean.kakumu@canyons.edu.

City Accepting Names for 2019 Additions to the Youth Grove

| Community | May 23, 2019

The City of Santa Clarita is accepting names to be included as part of the 2019 additions to the Youth Grove in Central Park, located at 27150 Bouquet Canyon Road. Those interested have the opportunity to fill out a release form, which is due by Sunday, June 30, in order to be included in this year’s additions.

The Youth Grove is a grassroots effort supported by the city and the Blue Ribbon Task Force. It is a memorial that consists of tree stumps adorned with plaques, and a central stone platform. The Youth Grove, which currently includes 107 names, is dedicated to Santa Clarita youth aged 24 and younger who have lost their lives in traffic-related incidents.

The memorial is a way for the Santa Clarita community to remember the young lives that have been lost, and also to reflect upon the tragic consequences that can result from drinking and driving, and reckless and distracted driving.

By providing a place for commemoration and reflection, the city hopes to raise awareness about the importance of safe driving and encourage a more mindful and responsible thought process before getting behind the wheel.

This year, the city will host the annual Evening of Remembrance event at the Youth Grove on Tuesday, September 17. The evening will include a Walk of Remembrance, beginning at 6:45 p.m. The names that are submitted by June 30 will be included in the grove in time for the event.

For more information about adding a name to the Youth Grove, and to access the release form, visit santa-clarita.com/YouthGrove or contact Tess Simgen at tsimgen@santa-clarita.com.

City to Host Ribbon Cutting for New Archery Range

| Community | May 16, 2019

Hikers, equestrians and cyclists love to visit Santa Clarita’s picturesque open spaces for a day of fun in nature, and now archers can also do the same thanks to a new archery range in the Haskell Canyon Open Space. The Santa Clarita City Council will be hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Santa Clarita Archery Range on Thursday, May 23 at 10 a.m. The community is invited to attend the event to celebrate the grand opening.

The Archery Range is located in the northernmost canyon in the Haskell Canyon Open Space, located north of Copper Hill Drive and east of Haskell Canyon Road. To access the archery range, follow the signage along the road off Copper Hill Drive. The path to the archery range is a 1.3 mile dirt road. Closed-toed shoes are recommended. To attend, RSVP to Kathleen Herrera at kherrera@santa-clarita.com or call (661) 255-4939.

The one-acre Santa Clarita Archery Range was developed by the city in partnership with local nonprofit organization Santa Clarita Valley (SCV) Archery. The Haskell Canyon Open Space was chosen as its location because of the amount of space needed for archery practice, keeping archers and trail users alike at a safe distance from practice targets.

The archery range is available and open to the public seven days a week, from dusk till dawn. On select dates and times, the SCV Archery hosts free and low cost introductory classes, including one-on-one coaching and group events. More information on the local nonprofit SCV Archery and their classes can be found on their website at SCVArchery.com.

Learn About Spousal Support, Child Custody and Child Support at Zonta’s Lifeforward Workshop

| Community | May 16, 2019

A workshop to help participants with important concerns regarding divorce and family law issues is scheduled for the May LifeForward workshop hosted by Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley. This free workshop is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday, May 18 at the Child & Development Center Education Building, located at 21545 Center Pointe Parkway in Santa Clarita.

Al Lustgarten, Esq., a local family law practitioner, will present the workshop designed to help participants understand and learn about rights during a divorce and after a divorce is final – including spousal support and modification, child custody and modification and child support and modification. Any clarifications about the divorce process or obligations of the parties involved can be provided.

Previous workshops in the series have helped attendees understand elements of managing money, select career options and pursue meaningful employment, deal with anger management, relationships and communication, file taxes, deal with drug and cyber bullying issues, overcoming life’s challenges, and maintain healthy eating and exercise habits. Workshops are designed to help participants believe in their unlimited power and potential, build the skills necessary to succeed, and be the powerful women they are meant to be.

Zonta offers the free LifeForward workshop series for women, usually on a monthly basis (excluding June, July and December), in collaboration with Single Mothers Outreach, Domestic Violence Program at Child & Family Center, Returning Women Veterans and Veterans’ Wives, and the Los Angeles County Department of Child & Family Services serving foster mothers. KHTS AM-1220 is a co-sponsor of the series with Zonta. All are welcome.

Workshops are organized by topics in which women express interest. A schedule of upcoming workshops is posted on www.scvzonta.org for women who are interested in a particular topic. Pre-registration is not required, but those who wish to hold a space for the more popular workshops or obtain further information on the upcoming workshop can call Single Mothers Outreach at (661) 288-0117.

COC Men’s Golf Wins State Competition

| Community, News, Sports | May 16, 2019

College of the Canyons won the 2019 California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) State Championship by a whopping 18 strokes at the Silverado Resort & Spa on May 13.

The Cougars completed the day with a five-man, 36-hole score of (734-371/363) to finish 14-over-par. Canyons topped the eight-team field followed by runner-up Santa Barbara City College (752-381/371), third place Cypress (766-383/383) and fourth place Folsom Lake College (768-384/384).

The state championship is the program’s ninth overall (1993, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2008, 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019), all coming under head coach Gary Peterson. COC has now won four state titles in the last seven years. The Cougars also finished runner-up at the state tourney in 2018, 2016 and 2014.

“This was not a year I expected to win a state championship,” said Peterson, about his team which featured four freshmen and two sophomores with limited tourney experience. “With six new guys it was surprising. I thought we would be building for next year, now I’m hoping we get some of these guys back.”

COC Freshman Nobuhiko Wakaari (142-73/69) won the individual state title after finishing two-under par for the tourney. His final round of 69 came after back-to-back bogeys on the final two holes but still represented the low score of the day.

“Nobu came into the clubhouse with a big smile on his face,” said Peterson, about the golfer from Niigata, Japan who he also described as a humble hard worker that always puts the team first.

His final round score capped a season in which Wakaari was named the Western State Conference (WSC) Player of the Year before finishing fourth at the Southern California regional tourney.
Wakaari becomes the third individual state champion in program history joining former Cougars Sidney Wolf (2014) and Ben Campbell (2016). Prior to Monday’s championship run Canyons had never won team and individual state titles in the same season.

Freshmen Jules Lavigne (146-72/74) and Anguerrand Voisin (146-75/71) finish third and fourth, respectively, in the final standings, with Lavigne’s opening round of 72 serving as the difference maker. Lavigne and Voisin both hail from France.

Wakaari, Lavigne and Voisin all earned All-State team honors. Sophomore Tom Sims (150-75/75) placed 12th and sophomore Matthew Mansholt (150-76/74) was 13th in the field of 60. Freshman Jack Greene (158-78/80) finished 40th overall.

“I can’t recall another state championship event where we had so many high individual finishes,” commented Peterson. “But this team has the ability to play all aspects of the game. They’re a great example of what we’ve tried to do here for a long time.”

The Cougars’ nine state titles are the most of any program in CCCAA history. The college has also won seven Southern California regional titles and 25 Western State Conference (WSC) championships.

Last fall, COC’s women’s golf program, also led by Peterson, won its third state championship. The Lady Cougars also have two individual state titles to their credit.

“We’ve had a really good run,” Peterson added, “I think the last 10 or 12 years have been a great success.”

The College of the Canyons Athletics department now boasts a combined 34 state championships (18 team and 16 individual) across 17 intercollegiate sports programs.

2019 CCCAA State Championship Final Scores:

1. Canyons (734-371/363) 2. SBCC (752-381/371) 3. Cypress (766-383/383) 4. Folsom Lake (768-384/384) T5. Mt. SAC (771-382/389) T5. Reedley (771-381/390) 7. San Jose City (788-398/390) 8. Fresno City (794-402/392)

Canyons Individual Scores:

Nobuhiko Wakaari (142-73/69); Jules Lavigne (146-72/74); Anguerrand Voisin (146-75/71); Tom Sims (150-75/75); Matthew Mansholt (150-76/74); Jack Greene (158-78/80).

Stay up to date on all this season’s action by following the College of the Canyons Athletic department on social media at @COCathletics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.

Celebrate Memorial Day at Eternal Valley

| Canyon Country Magazine, Community | May 14, 2019

The community will gather at Eternal Valley Memorial Park and Mortuary on Monday, May 27 to recognize the memory of those who served in the American military forces. Each year Eternal Valley hosts a Memorial Day celebration including patriotic music, speakers and an airplane flyover.

Last year Eternal Valley featured the memory of individuals who served in WWII and this year they will highlight the military who served in the Korean War.

“It’s a great way to honor the spirit of the day,” said Richard Nunally, Eternal Valley general manager. “The spirit of the day is to remember the reason we have freedom.”

Jerry Rhodes, secretary of SCV Veterans Memorial, Inc., wrote an explanation of the meaning behind Memorial Day:

Memorial Day began after the Civil War and was originally called Decoration Day, a day to place flowers on the graves of those who perished in that war. Following World War I, the day expanded to honor all those who have died in service to their country. It was commonly celebrated in May partly because of the abundance of spring flowers used to decorate the graves of servicemen. The Uniform Monday Holiday Act moved its date to the last Monday of May.

Each year the SCV Veterans Memorial committee and Eternal Valley Memorial Park and Mortuary present Santa Clarita’s Memorial Day ceremony. Beginning at 10:00 a.m., the ceremony will include a WWII vintage airplane flyover by the Van Nuys Condor Squadron and music by the SCV Concert Band under the direction of Tim Durand. Santa Clarita City Councilman Bob Kellar will be master of ceremonies and our keynote speaker is Iraq War combat pilot Mike Garcia.

Each year we emphasize one of America’s conflicts and this year we highlight the Korean War, often called “the forgotten war.” Korean War veteran John Coleman will be featured, along with bagpiper James Gilmore and vocalist Savannah Burrows. The Ronald Reagan Marine Corps League will be posting the Colors; Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 355 will be posting Military Branch flags; and the SCV Young Marines will place flags on symbolic grave markers.

Following the one-hour ceremony, local high school students will read the names of SCV deceased veterans engraved on our Veterans Memorial Wall.

Eternal Valley Memorial Park and Mortuary is located at 23287 North Sierra Hwy. in Newhall. There will be light refreshments following the ceremony.

American Legion Post 507 is hosting a mid-day lunch at their facility in Newhall. For more information about the ceremony or luncheon, call 661-259-0800.

Graduation, Drinking and Teen Statistics

| Canyon Country Magazine, Community | May 14, 2019

According to a report from the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, research completed last year studied drinking patterns for eighth, 10th and 12th grade students across the United States which showed the following:
12th graders
30 percent drank in the past month
18 percent had been drunk
14 percent were binge drinkers
1 percent drank daily

10th graders
19 percent drank in the past month
8 percent had been drunk
9 percent were binge drinkers
1 percent drank alcohol daily

8th grade
8 percent drank in the past month
2 percent had been drunk
4 percent were binge drinkers
0 drank daily

Youth Obtaining Alcohol
The 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health website has some other facts and figures about underage drinking:

Among underage drinkers ages 12 to 20, there were 37 percent who said they drank at home and 49 percent who reported drinking alcohol at someone else’s house. And 73 percent of them said they were drinking with more than one other person the last time they drank.

Among underage drinkers who did not pay for the alcohol they consumed the last time they drank (which was 71 percent of underage drinkers), one-third said the source was an unrelated person aged 21 or older. Fifty-four percent reported family and friends as the source of alcohol they consumed – parents/guardians were 27 percent, while another family member provided alcohol in 27 percent of cases. Another underage individual gave them alcohol said 17 percent of reports, and 7 percent took it from home, while 3 percent took it from someone else’s home.
Regardless of the source of alcohol, additional research from the Centers for Disease Control’s 2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey reported that a survey showed that 87 percent of 12th graders, 72 percent of 10th graders, and 53 percent of 8th graders describe it as ‘fairly easy’ or ‘very easy’ for them to get alcohol. On a positive note, despite reported ease of obtaining alcohol, there’s a high rate of disapproval of binge drinking at all three grade levels: 87 percent of eighth graders; 80 percent of 10th graders; and 73 percent of 12th graders.

Legal Results of DUI
According to an online law and government website, HG.org:

It is illegal for underage individuals to consume alcohol while driving, and if found with a blood alcohol content of .01 percent or higher, he or she may face charges from California’s zero tolerance law. The resulting fine is up to $250 and the motorist loses his/her driving privileges for at least one year.

An underage DUI charge stems from an individual under 21 who is found driving with a blood alcohol content of .05 percent or higher. This can result in a license suspension of one year, a fine between $100 and $300, and the driver may be required to complete an alcohol education program.

A minor convicted of the Open Container Law means that the underage individual is found in possession of an open container of alcohol while in a motor vehicle. If he/she is accompanied by a parent and the transportation was necessary for the parent’s work, or the minor was instructed by his/her employer, parent or guardian to transport the alcohol, charges are different. But an Open Container conviction may mean jail time of up to six months, a fine of up to $1,000, plus the vehicle is impounded and the driver’s license suspended.

Responsibility.org; HG.org; CDC.gov

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Yoga Kula Fest Promotes Community

| Community | May 10, 2019

Grab your yoga mat and join Yoga Yoga and the Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation to support those in need. The second annual Yoga Kula Fest will take place at Hart Park on June 1. Proceeds from this event will go towards Bridge to Home, William S. Hart Park and the SCV Youth Project.

Attendees can expect to connect with nature and sunshine, get to know heart-filled community members (Kula means community), and experience guided tours of the William S. Hart Museum and Barnyard. Festivities also include a Mindful Meditation Ceremony, Community Yoga Flow, live music, poetry, art and more.

The event is accepting charitable donations, including small painting canvases for children, canvas paint and brushes, and monetary donations.

The event begins at 7:45 a.m. on June 1, and will end at 12:30 p.m. The cost to attend is a suggested donation of $25. William S. Hart Park is located at 24151 Newhall Avenue in Newhall, 91321.

For those who are interested in becoming a vendor, visit https://www.yogayogaonline.com/yoga-kula-fest/ for more details. For Pre-Registration or Vendor Booth questions, or to volunteer, call Danica at 661-993-2602 or mail grow@yogayogaonline.com. Visit www.yogayogaonline.com to learn more about community yoga options.

SCV Veterans Services Collaborative Memorial Day Backpack Walk

| Community | May 10, 2019

On Saturday, May 25, the SCV veterans Services Collaborative will be hosting a Memorial Day Backpack Walk.

A ticket purchase of $30 includes a full meal from the Tommy’s Hamburgers, a dessert from the ice cream truck and a gift bag. For those who simply want to attend and cheer on the walkers, the cost of admission is $12 for food. Prizes will be given out in several categories, so wear your military uniform or backpack and join the fun. Tickets will also available on the morning of the event at 7:30 a.m.

To purchase tickets, visit The Veteran Center, located at 23222 Lyons Avenue in Newhall. The organization’s membership is growing, and for those who wish to help out local veterans, drop by the Veteran’s Center and request to join for free.

For more information about the SCV Veterans Services Collaborative, visit www.scv-vets.org.

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