The holidays are a wonderful to time give and finding the perfect present for your loved one is a good feeling. While in the holiday mood, it is a good time to look at the many nonprofits in the community. Volunteers are always the number-one-requested item on a nonprofit's wish list, but if time restraints are a problem for you, there are other things you can do to help these hard-working organizations. Toy drives and canned food donations are a common sight during the holiday season and residents of Santa Clarita are a giving group. The SCV Food Pantry, for example, receives 40 percent of their goods for the entire year during the months of November and December, according to Executive Director Belinda Crawford. "We have many individuals in this community who are grateful for what they have and they also realize there are those in the community who are in need," Crawford said. "You think we are an affluent community, but there are pockets of poverty."
There is plenty of holiday entertainment this season at some of Santa Clarita's local venues. Beginning with the ever-popular Nutcracker Ballet to some funny and heartwarming plays, the spirit of the season will come alive for everyone in the family.
It seems that the politicos are out in full force. Case in point: the Boy Scouts' Leaders of Character dinner sponsored by Total Financial Solutions. SCV council peeps like Bob Kellar and Cameron Smyth were there with "Last Boy Scout" Wayne Crawford (He has his own tractor!) and honoree Kevin "I've worked for the Dodgers and The Master's College and now I own a fancy car dealership with a hall of famer!" Malone (somewhere, an over-achiever feels shame).
Get a jump on the holiday season and a few inspirational ideas by wandering through four spectacularly decorated homes as the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital Home Tour League kicks off the holiday with its annual Holiday Home Tour. This year's theme, "A Holiday Renaissance," will mark the 26th anniversary of the event and the celebration of more than 100 homes that have participated over the years.
Mac's Project, Inc. has announced its "Recycle for Life" program and the collection of aluminum, plastic and glass beverage containers. Proceeds from recycling efforts will raise money to benefit area children being treated at Children's Hospital Los Angeles and their families. By donating your recyclable beverage containers to the program, businesses are not only donating for the benefit of our area children but are doing something about our environment and helping to keep California beautiful.
Perhaps the best way to describe the Boys & Girls Club's Festival of Trees is to say that spending time there is like spending time inside your favorite Christmas card. And it's accurate to say that the families who have made the festival such an endearing part of their winter celebration don't just come to sample a taste of the holidays. They come to feast. They come for a holiday immersion and that's precisely what they get. First, the eyes are overwhelmed; more than 100 trees are on display, all meticulously decorated by some of the area's most inspired and creative artists. There are wreaths and table displays, and many of the trees themselves are fashioned as part of a vignette - a unique theme bound only by the imagination of the artist.
Cliche-speaking, a picture is worth a thousand words, but on November 5, they'll be worth some quested-after ribbons and much-needed funds to boot. The Santa Clarita Valley's Photographers Association will be hosting their fifth annual Photo Expo and Fall Print Competition at the Hyatt from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and this year's event brings multiple cultural and practical learning opportunities with it.
To doctors, it's known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, ALS for short. To most people, it's known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. But to ALS patients and their loved ones, the disease is known more for what it inflicts than by what it is called. ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Over time, it robs patients of muscle coordination and physical mobility, while usually leaving their minds intact.
Is there someone in your life who could use a break, a good turn or a bit of relief? How about a little color in their world - or perhaps some new color on their house? If you do, grab a pen because you may be moments away from making a big difference in his or her life. You may be moments away from brightening someone's day, even as you brighten the color of his or her walls, window frames and moldings.
What do you get when you mix hyper-exclusive wines with public servants who like to shake their money maker? If you were a guest at the Loose Goose Festival's Golden Goose Gala, you know that the answer is the newly nicknamed Steve "I've Got a Spell on You" Sturgeon, who made like Travolta and wowed the female crowd with his smooth moves. Steve, while you may still be in swoon state over your newfound popularity, know this, you debonair darling: You had us at "Hello."
If you had told me in February that the Inside SCV Singles events would draw over 500 people to numerous local hotspots all in the name of fun, I would have laughed you out of the room. I was hoping that our first event at Wolfcreek would boast 40 people; instead, we had over 150! Nearly a dozen events later, I'm still amazed at how many awesome single folks live or work in Santa Clarita. Over the last handful of months, I have met tons of regular attendees and have made more new friends than I can count.
Every life is its own incredible story. Those words form the motto of veteran entertainment industry producer Brad Sevy's latest project known as Wonderful Lives Productions. But those words are more than a motto. They are, in a sense, the reason behind what Sevy does. They have become the recipe for the magic he creates. The ingredients, on the other hand, are regular folks like you.
Singles Night - December 7, 2006
7pm at Abbey Lane Cafe
Hang out at Santa Clarita's newest eatery while mixing with other fun singles. Live music, appetizer specials, $5 house wine, $3.75 for all beers and a chance to meet your match; what more could you ask for?
Abbey Lane Cafe
25810 W. Hemingway Avenue
Singles Night - November 16, 2006
7pm at All Corked Up
Enjoy live music and get out on the dance floor. Take advantage of the drink specials as long as you wear your nametag; $3 for selected import wine and $3.50 for selected import beers. Make sure you stick around for the special door prize drawing!
All Corked Up
26340 Diamond Place
Longtime SCV resident Cathy Duus had no idea what was coming the day she decided to hang her first hummingbird feeder in her backyard back in 1995. But there were a few clues. That first feeder - the same no-frills, 16-ounce feeder you'd find at Target or Wal-Mart - emptied fast, suspiciously fast. "I was sure it had a leak," says Duus. "I just couldn't believe it would empty that fast." But this was no leak, not literally, anyway.
Ever marveled at the handiwork of the street painters? With little more than a handful of colored chalk, a model picture and a good pair of kneepads, they can turn a patch of ordinary asphalt into a stunning work of art. In a matter of hours, these street virtuosos can take the very ground you walk on and drive over, and transform it into a platform for something beautiful. Rembrandt, Van Gogh and Chagall. Picasso, Monet and Matisse. Rivera and Renoir and Michelangelo.
Boo! What kid, or adult for that matter, wouldn't enjoy experiencing a classic Halloween night out a whole 10 days before the actual calendared event? This year, the volunteers who make up the Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society will host Heritage Haunt on Saturday, October 21. Held at Heritage Junction, located on San Fernando Road in Newhall, the event will run from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. For guests 6 years and older, the historic Pardee House will become a place of giggles and screams; the old Santa Clarita home will evolve into a haunted house for anyone who dares enter.
The eighth Annual Crawford-Fleming Breast Cancer Awareness Golf Invitational will be held at the Valencia Country Club on Monday, October 23. Together, the Crawford and Fleming families, along with more than 100 golfers, will once again make a difference through an action-packed day of fun. The event will be followed by a dinner, plus a silent and live auction, all raising funds for this important cause. And for the second year, a tea will also be held simultaneously, featuring boutique vendors, fashions and more.
It would seem that the Santa Clarita Valley has become home to a special kind of migratory bird: the Loose Goose. It made its first appearance last October, and about 2,500 valley residents turned out to witness the festival that followed in its wake. Now, with October nearly upon us, the big bird is circling again, and Loose Goose enthusiasts are starting to lick their lips. They're washing their flutes and cleansing their palettes. They may even be dieting in advance.
A Soroptimist event just isn't an event, it seems, without a dramatic thematic element. Recent memory recalls Hyatt-enclosed trips to Asia, a Shakespearian forest, the 1920s "prohibition" era (Yes, we did put "prohibition" in quotes on purpose. We're not saying that a Hyatt event and "consumption of the great social lubricator" go hand in hand, it's just that... Oh, wait. Yeah, that's what we're saying. Sorry.), and, most recently, an exotic tropical island. The auction luau was a great success that will benefit women and girls in our valley. Congrats to the gals of Sorop, especially Gail Rocco-Mack, the event chair.