Vol. 1, No. 22 • September 16, 2015 Uniting the Community with News, Features and Commentary Circulation: 14,500 • $1.00





See Page 20

Can a Fix Slow the Asilomar Slide?



Stopping a landslide from moving is an

expensive proposition, and experts

acknowledge that there is no stopping

Mother Nature—but they believe movement

can be slowed significantly on Asilomar


The street, abutting El Medio and Almar

Avenues, is built on a hillside that has two

landslides. One starts 90 feet below the surface,

extends into the Pacific Ocean, and

is considered inactive. The other, 35 feet

down, is continually moving.

The City of Los Angeles installed inclinometers

to measure ground movement

on Asilomar in 2000.

Five years later the movement of the

hill had sheared off the top of one of the

inclinometers. A year later a measurement

showed that the ground had moved more

than a foot vertically.

The street below Asilomar, Puerto del

Mar, has disappeared, all but for the

cracked asphalt and dirt that marks where

it once existed.

A 2008 geotechnical report prepared by

Ninyo and Moore estimated that the cost to

remove the landslide and repair the hillside

would run about $26 million.

With the impending threat of an El Niño

and its heavy rains, there is worry about the

bluff and hillside above two mobile home

Pacific Palisades Community Council President Chris Spitz welcomes Councilman

Mike Bonin to last Thursday’s meeting.

Photo: Shelby Pascoe

Presorted Standard

U.S. Postage


Pasadena, CA

Permit #422

Puerto del Mar, a street below Asilomar Boulevard, was destroyed by the movement of a landslide located in the hill.

Postal Customer


parks, Tahitian Terrace (156 spaces) and

Palisades Bowl (176 spaces), that are located

on Pacific Coast Highway just north of

Temescal Canyon Road.

The problem is complicated because the

hillside is owned by three different entities:

L.A. City, Eddie Biggs (Palisades Bowl) and

(Continued on Page 9)

Bonin Addresses Concerns at

Community Council Meeting



Questions ranging from backyard

beekeeping and Archer School expansion

to a pedestrian overcrossing

that would connect Potrero Canyon

Park with Will Rogers Beach were presented

to City Councilman Mike Bonin at

the September 10 Pacific Palisades Community

Council meeting.

In an opening statement to the packed

room, Bonin addressed four topics: homelessness,

hosting the Olympics, sidewalk repairs

and police/firefighter recruitment.

“For too long we have allowed the homeless

problem to fester,” Bonin said, noting

Photo: Shelby Pascoe

the City’s ongoing battle against lawsuits

and court rulings. “Our [the City’s] policy

has become ‘sidewalks first’ rather than

‘housing first.’”

Bonin said there are 17,000 to 19,000

people who sleep outside every night in Los

Angeles and that he is fighting to get resources

so there is a “menu of resources between

sidewalks and permanent housing.”

He also praised the Pacific Palisades Homeless

Task Force for its civic leadership.

“A lot of folks are excited about hosting

the Olympics,” Bonin said. “[But] I’m concerned

that L.A. would be on the hook for

any overruns,” if indeed it is selected as the

host city for 2024. He noted that the City has

(Continued on Page 9)

Friends of Library Pop-Up Book Sale

Hundreds of nearly-new fiction and nonfiction,

art, cookbooks, coffee table books,

DVDs and CDs will be sold 8:30 a.m. to 1:30

p.m., Saturday, September 19 at the Palisades

Branch Library parking lot, 861 Alma Real.

As an added convenience, credit cards,

as well as cash and checks, will now be accepted

for payment. In case of inclement

weather, book sale will be postponed until

the following Saturday.

Proceeds help purchase books, research

material and other items the branch would

not otherwise be able to offer.


Page 2 Palisades News September 16, 2015




6 Bed, 7

bath, 5,983 sq ft,

7,500 sq ft lot


5 bed, 5.5 bath


5,000 sq ft, 13,362 sq ft lot


6 Bed, 6.5

ba th,

6,650 sq ft, 7,200 sq ft lot

5 Bed, 4 bath,


3,357 sq ft, 17,019 sq ft



3 b eds,

3. 5 b aths, 3,600 sq ft on 10 a cres

5 b eds, 4 baths

, 3,200 sq ft, 7,202 sq ft



September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 3

California Incline Construction Update

Due to slope stabilization, the pedestrian overcrossing above the Incline may now be

replaced during Incline construction. Initially it was going to be place one to two years later

and require another Incline closure of four to six months. Photo courtesy of City of Santa Monica



Many people who have moved to

the Palisades in recent years

may not know about the 1978

October fire that destroyed 16 homes and

St. Matthew’s Church sanctuary as it roared

through the Santa Monica Mountains just

north of town.

According to Los Angeles firefighters, the

fire season, which typically begins in October,

is ahead of normal this year because of

the drought and persistent heat.

Hillside residents received notices asking

them to water plants and vegetation, while

still following water restrictions. L.A.

County Fire Chief Daryl Osby wrote in an

August 21 letter: “The four-year drought

has forced us all to cut back on water usage;

however, we would like to encourage those

residents in the wildland-urban interface

to continue to judiciously water plants and

ornamental vegetation in accordance with

your local water restriction ordinance.”

Additionally, all Palisades residents

should make sure brush clearance is properly


Observe Red Flag days. In 2006, LAFD

was asked to identify areas such as very narrow

roads, hairpin turns, tight curves and

key intersections that, if not cleared of vehicles,

would create a choke point during

a fire. People need to be able to evacuate

fire areas and firefighters need to be able to

access these areas. Vehicles illegally parked

will be ticketed and towed.

If a fire is close to your property, evacuate.

Leave early to avoid being caught in

fire, smoke or road congestion. Don’t wait

to be told by authorities. If it is an intense

wildfire, they may not have time to knock

on every door.

“When the wind comes up, all bets are

off,” retired Fire Station 69 Captain Mike

Ketailly told the News.

If you have an elderly neighbor, make

sure they get out, too. The evacuation center

for Pacific Palisades is Palisades High

School. For those who have large animals,

such as horses, the evacuation center is Paul

Revere Middle School.

Remember: You can replace property,

but not lives.

Be prepared. LAFD reminds residents to

keep a pair of shoes and a flashlight ready

in the event of a night evacuation and to

have the six “P’s” ready: 1.) people and pets;

2.) papers, phone numbers and important

documents; 3.) prescriptions, vitamins and

eyeglasses; 4.) pictures and irreplaceable

The California Incline bridge, which

closed in mid-April for reconstruction,

is on target for completion by

May 2016.

“It is 30 percent complete,” said Santa

Monica City Engineer Lee Swain at the

PCH Task Force meeting held in Malibu on

September 2. “All the piles have been completed

and 450 soil nails have been put into

the bluffs.”

Swain explained that the nails extend 20

to 75 feet into the bluffs and then are surrounded

by concrete, which stabilizes the

slope. One of the requirements of MCM

Construction, in addition to the bridge replacement,

was slope stabilization.

The Incline Replacement Project has

been in the planning stages since 2009,

when the 1930s-built bridge was deemed

seismically unsafe.

“By December, two of the three bridge

decks will be laid,” Swain said.

Although there were dire predictions of

traffic problems along Pacific Coast High-

Be Prepared for a Possible Wildfire

Photo taken on October 23, 1978, above Temescal Canyon. The fire destroyed 16 homes

in Pacific Palisades and St. Matthew’s Church sanctuary.

Photo: Jim Kenney

memorabilia 5.) personal computers (information

on hard drive and disks) and

6.) plastic (credit and ATM cards) and cash.

Before leaving your house: close all windows

and doors to prevent sparks from blowing

inside; close all doors inside your house

to slow the spread of fire; turn on the lights

in every room, the porch and yard, to make

your house more visible through the smoke

or darkness; and move furniture away from

windows and sliding glass doors to avoid

ignition from the radiant heat of the fire.

Help firefighters by making sure all combustible

yard furniture is away from your

home; attach garden hoses to faucets and

place them so they are accessible; place a

ladder against the house on the opposite

side of the approaching fire for access to

the roof; and shut off butane/propane or

natural gas valves.

way because of the closure, traffic is flowing

smoothly, except for evening and weekend

traffic jams at the PCH/Pier exit.

The stoplight at the Incline, which is almost

permanently green, has led to complaints

about the short timing of the light

at Chautauqua and PCH, and the resulting

backup of cars turning onto PCH and West

Channel Road. At the meeting, Caltrans officials

said they would check the timing.

Additionally, Santa Monica police asked

if the light at the Incline could be programmed

to turn red, in order to allow cars

attempting to make a left into beach parking

just north of the McClure Tunnel the

opportunity to do so safely.

On September 9, Construction Manager

Curtis Castle reported on the pedestrian

overcrossing (POC) that goes directly above

the Incline.

“The City originally planned to replace

the POC one to two years after the Incline

project. This would have required another

closure of about four to six months of the

Incline,” Castle said. “However, due to condition

of the current POC and the desire to

take advantage of the current closure and

avoid a second closure of the Incline, the

City is planning to demolish and replace

the structure as part of a change order to

the Incline contract.”

The City of Santa Monica is working

with the contractor to determine cost before


Marquez School

Hosts Food Truck

Festival Sunday

The seventh annual back-to-school

Food Truck Festival will be held from

4 to 7 p.m. on Sunday, September 20

at the Marquez Elementary School

lower yard.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit


Co-chairs Amanda Keston and

Laura Marie Salinas said, “Everyone is

welcome and we look forward to seeing

you there! It’s going to be a really

fun day of food and fun at Marquez.”

Food trucks will include Baby’s

Badass Burgers, Joe’s Pizza, The Green

Truck, Border Grill and Martin’s Ice

Cream Truck.

The Palisades High School awardwinning

marching band and the PaliHi

dance team will perform. Cheer

Mania will teach cheers and lead

other activities.

Marquez spirit clothing will be on

sale. Parents working with Marquez

Adopt A Book will be on site to allow

parents and friends to purchase a book

to celebrate a child’s birthday or honor

a teacher (or make a cash donation).

Page 4 Palisades News September 16, 2015

Councilman’s Aide Has Roots Here


Staff Writer



1172 Encinal Canyon Rd, Malibu

OFFERED AT $5,990,000

Agreat-grandchild of the founder of

Pacific Palisades has returned to

the area to help residents with

their problems.

Sharon Shapiro is the newest field dep -

uty for L.A. City Councilmember Mike

Bonin, who represents the 11th District,

which includes the Palisades, Brentwood,

Marina del Rey, West LA, Venice, Playa del

Rey, Mar Vista and Westchester. Shapiro

works with him in Brentwood and the Pal -

isades to address both broad issues like

homelessness and more personal issues,

such as helping with an individual resident’s

trash collection problems.

“Anything and everything,” said Shapiro,

29, who started working for Bonin in July.

“It ranges from day to day—that’s what

makes this job so interesting.”

Shapiro’s great-grandfather is Rev.

Charles Scott, who founded the Palisades

with the Southern California Episcopal

Methodist Church in 1922. She grew up

in Los Feliz, where she still lives, and for

the previous eight years, she worked with

Councilman Tom LaBonge as his Hollywood

area director. However, with LaBonge’s

term ending in June and former Bonin field

deputy Norm Kulla retiring, an opportu-

Sharon Shapiro is Councilman Mike

Bonin’s field deputy for Pacific Palisades.

nity emerged to join Bonin’s team.

“Working for him has been one of the

best things I’ve been able to do in my eightyear

career,” said Shapiro, who graduated

from Whittier College in 2007 with a degree

in political science. He’s “incredibly bright.

It’s amazing and humbling to work for

someone who is so smart.”

The job also came with the perk of

spending time in an area that holds a special

appeal due to her family history. “I

thought it would be a nice stepping stone

to a community that I felt personally connected

to.” Shapiro’s grandmother Martha

was Scott’s daughter.

Shapiro has found both similarities to

and differences from her previous Hollywood

post. Homelessness is also an issue

there, and she was one of the founding participants

in Hollywood 4wrd (four walls, a

roof and a door), which worked to address

homelessness in the area. Bonin also has

focused recently on homelessness, and in

July, his editorial advocating a continuum

of safe havens for the homeless was printed

in the L.A. Daily News.

She has also found that both quality of

life concerns and preservation of open

space are common interests of Hollywood

and the Palisades. However, Hollywood also

has its busy nightlife aspects and issues surrounding

the Hollywood sign, while the

Palisades has a different style, with an involved

citizenry and “small town neighborhood

feel to it.” She noted, “It’s great to have

a sense of community, and I feel that the

Palisades really has that.”

There are new issues too. Because the ocean

lies on one side of the Palisades, the Coastal

Commission has become part of her work.

Shapiro has also started attending Pacific

Palisades Community Council meet ings to

learn more about local concerns and report

back to Bonin. “I think he takes that to heart.”




16678 Via la Costa, Pacific Palisades

OFFERED AT $5,890,000

In addition, Shapiro has begun reaching

out to local leadership groups, such as the

American Legion Post 283 and the Tem es -

cal Canyon Association, to learn as much

as she can about the area, from its history

to current concerns.

Her goal is to serve “as a bridge and a

conduit,” Shapiro said. “It’s difficult to navigate

city departments . . . Sometimes you

need a little bit of personal attention.”

To contact Shapiro, call (310) 575-8461

or email her at

Blood Drive Will

Be Held Sept. 20

Dr. Mike Martini is organizing a community

blood drive, sponsored by Pacific

Palisades Optimist Club, from 9 a.m. to 3

p.m. on Sunday, September 20, at the Amer -

ican Legion Hall at 15427 La Cruz Dr. For

an appointment, call (310) 454-0527 or

visit and mention sponsor

code Post 283. Walks-in are welcome.

Donors are reminded to eat a nutritious

meal beforehand, drink plenty of fluids

and bring a photo identification. Donors

will receive a coupon for free admission to

Madam Tussaud’s Hollywood (regular admission

is $29.95) and admission for two

to the Laugh Factory Comedy Club.



965 Chattanooga Ave, Pacific Palisades

OFFERED AT $3,499,000

82 acres across Encinal Cyn from the Malibu Country

Club. Five residences; each unique to its location.

Equestrian facilities; barns, stables, pens pastures.

Breathtaking 5bd/7.5ba ocn view Med estate on

apprx ½ acre in the exclusive guard gated Enclave.

Exceptional 180 degree ocn & mtn views. Resort-like

backyard with pool. Membership in Summit Club.

Magnificent 4bd/3ba Craftsman w/ dramatic ocn & mtn

vus. Custom craftsmanship & vintage details meld

seamlessly w/ all modern conveniences. Huge private

backyard. Great end of cul-de-sac location.

Dan was recently congratulated by John Closson, Vice President and Regional Manager of Berkshire Hathaway

HomeServices, for being the “Top Producing” agent in the Pacific Palisades office for 2014, as well as one of

the “Top Ten” agents nationwide out of more than 35,000 Berkshire Hathaway sales professionals.

CalBRE #01147391


881 Alma Real Dr., Ste. 100

Pacific Palisades, CA 90272


Dan Urbach

Luxury Property


September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 5

PCH Is a Jurisdiction Nightmare;

Uber/Lyft Lowering DUI Arrests



In just 10 miles along Pacific Coast Highway,

from the McClure Tunnel to the

Malibu Pier, it would be possible to receive

a traffic ticket from four different law

enforcement entities: the California Highway

Patrol (CHP) West Valley; Los Angeles

County Sheriff’s Malibu-Lost Hills Station;

Los Angeles Police Department West L.A.;

and Santa Monica Police Department.

At the PCH Taskforce meeting on September

2, each group reported on traffic

accidents on the portion of the road they


CHP’s Leland Tang, whose jurisdiction

is from Coastline to Malibu city limits, reported

that through August there had been

seven collisions: three involved injuries and

four had property damage. By comparison,

there were nine collisions in 2014. “The primary

factor [for the accidents] was speed,”

Tang said.

Lt. James Royal with the sheriff’s department,

whose jurisdiction extends from

Malibu (where CHP’s jurisdiction ends) to

Leo Carrillo Beach, said there were 191 accidents

this year compared to 200 in 2014,

through the end of July.

Last year there were four fatalities, compared

to five at the time of the PCH meeting.

In February, Bruce Jenner’s Cadillac Escalade

slammed into two other cars and a

woman was killed. According to Reuters, the

investigation showed speed was a factor—

considering the existing traffic conditions.

The second fatality was in March. Mela -

nie Quinonez, who had pulled over to the

side of the road, was hit while standing next

to her vehicle in the early morning hours.

The hit and run resulted in the arrest of a


Deputies say PCH can be dangerous for

pedestrians, joggers and even motorists who

pull over, and warn, “When you’re on PCH,

please be aware of your surroundings. Be

careful when you exit your car and when

you’re walking on PCH.”

The third victim was a hiker from Scotland

who attempted to cross PCH. Also in June,

Dwayne Coleman, known as MC Su preme,

died when a truck slammed into Coleman’s

vehicle, which was parked along PCH.

In August, a transient on a bike attempt -

ed to cross PCH, near Zuma, at 8:30 p.m.

“He didn’t have any lights,” Royal said. The

man was airlifted to Ronald Reagan UCLA

Hospital, and died four hours later.

“Hit and runs are also up significantly,”

Royal said. There were 43 this year through

July as compared to 27 last year. Also DUIs

were up: 74 this year and 57 last year.

That DUI rise was different than the

other three law enforcement agencies,

which saw a decline.

“It is absolutely noticeable how many

“But in more affluent

areas people are taking

Uber and Lyft. It’s taking

more drunks off the road.”

— Nyamweci Samuel, LAPD

drunks are taking Uber,” said LAPD’s

Nyamweci Samuel, who said he observed at

the last DUI checkpoint that at one point—

of six cars, five were Uber drivers taking

inebriated people home.

Samuel’s area on PCH extends from

Chautauqua Boulevard to Coastline Drive.

“I cover such a small area,” he said, noting

that accidents were up slightly, but there

have been no fatalities in 2015.

“In less affluent areas, people drink and

then roll the dice and drive,” Samuel said.

“But in more affluent areas people are taking

Uber and Lyft. It’s taking more drunks

off the road.”

Other enforcement officials agreed that

DUIs were down and Tang added, “State -

wide DUI arrests are going down.”

Samuel said that more of the DUIs now

appear to be drug-related, rather than alcohol-related.

He also said that at DUI checkpoints, officers

look for unlicensed drivers because

“Those drivers are five times more likely

to get in a fatal accident.”

Santa Monica Police officials reported

there have been 21 collisions (10 involving

injuries) through August from McClure

Tunnel to Entrada. The highest frequency

of accidents is on Sunday from 3 to 7 p.m.

and the major reason is speed.

Samuel, Tang and McDonnel said that

there is an attempt to do more education,

warnings and less ticketing. “If we give you

a ticket it’s for education, not because we’re

mean,” Samuel said.

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Page 6 Palisades News September 16, 2015


About Town

Upset by Jewelry Store Letter

We have received another letter addressed

simply to “Resident,” this time from

a Westwood jewelry store. They claim they

were most upset to hear about a wellknown

Palisades jeweler and his troubled

business and claim, “At Sarah Leonard Fine

Jewelers, we are known for quality and

ethics, something Pacific Palisades could

use right now.” Sarah Leonard is probably

not known for compassion, something else

the Palisades could use right now. No, owners

of Sarah Leonard, after receiving this

letter, I would rather go to a pawn shop or

flea market before I set foot in your store.

Alcohol Tasting in Stores

I read in the Community Council minutes

that Gelson’s and Ralphs are applying

to be able to have alcohol tasting tables in

their liquor aisles. This really doesn’t seem

appropriate in such family-oriented environments,

with kids walking past the

tables and observing. This also sounds

dangerous, sending people out the door

with a buzz as they try to remember

where they parked their car.

(Editor’s note: It is a tasting and the area

will be “fenced off” from children. Stores

are restricted to one vendor and one alcohol

choice per day. The most one person will

receive in a day is 8 oz. of beer or 3 oz. of

wine—half a cup is 4 oz.)

DWP Working on Sunset

DWP have been working Sunset between

Marquez and Temescal. We understand

from the workers that they are

laying more electrical lines from Brentwood.

Has the DWP given up on the controversial

new Distribution Station?

(Editor’s note: According to DWP spokes -

person Carol Tucker, there has been no

movement on a site selection for DS 104.

The project you observed is to upgrade the

existing electrical line that goes underground

from Kenter Canyon to the ocean.

The purpose is to provide greater power reliability

in this high-voltage transmission

line, and is not related to the new DS.)

Hot Days and Burned Paws

Our sidewalks are awfully hot during

these heat waves. Please be careful not to

walk your dog on any surface you wouldn’t

want to walk barefoot on yourself.


If you’d like to share something you’ve

“heard about town,” please email it to


In the “Stop Thief!! Residents Give

Chase” story in the September 2 issue,

Bentons Sports Shop was identified as

Benton’s. Bentons has been a staple on

the Westside and a retail mainstay on

North Swarthmore for the past 33

years and we apologize for the error.



The Beauty of Diversity


Executive Director,

Chabad Jewish Community Campus

The weekly Swarthmore farmers’ market is

a colorful and vibrant place with many

enticing and diverse fruits, vegetables

and products to buy.

Strolling through the open market, I also

enjoy bumping into old friends, and making

new ones. On a recent visit, I saw more than

30 friends and acquaintances of all ages,

backgrounds and occupations. I enjoyed

conversing with them all.

One sports coach shared with me his

philosophy about success, saying “The difference

between a successful person and an unsuccessful

one is the successful person tried just one time

more than the other.”

A real estate investor I encountered told me

his greatest life lesson: “No matter how much

you make, only what is shared with family,

friends and the needy really counts.”

These “chance” meetings at the farmers’ market

got me thinking about diversity and beauty.

What is beauty? Is there a theme or rule for

what is beautiful? Why does one person find

something beautiful while another finds it

unattractive or plain?

Psychologists say symmetry plays a role. We

tend to find symmetrical faces attractive as a

sign of health. Familiarity with something also

makes it beautiful in our eyes; while new and

unfamiliar views can take our breath away.

The Bible refers to the “etrog,” a citrus fruit used

during the upcoming Sukkot holiday or Feast of

Tabernacles, as beautiful or “hadar” in Hebrew.

Its beauty is explained from the fact it “lives”

(“dar”) on the tree for four seasons, therefore

uniting each unique season within this final

fruity product.

Jewish mystical teachings of Kabbalah explain

another word for beauty in Hebrew: “tiferet,”

which also means “to weave.” This implies that

beauty comes from weaving together various

elements into a unified whole, as in sewing

pieces of fabric into a garment.

We see this in nature, too. A rainbow has bands

of color, each beautiful in its own right. But the

unique combination creates magnificence greater

than the sum of its parts. Diversity is nature’s

secret to not only beauty, but also survival.

If we define beauty this way, then Pacific

Palisades would be a prime example. Our

hometown harmonizes various landscapes—

mountains, ocean, lowlands and highlands—

into one natural paradise. Each has its own

unique beauty, but viewed as a whole, its collective

beauty surpasses it all.

Nature and her creator are teaching us an

important lesson. Diversity is beauty; diversity

is a blessing. As a community leader, I interact

with people of varied ideological, educational

and social backgrounds. I have learned from

every one of them. I am not above anyone,

nor is anyone above me.

Together, we are a community of many colors

and variations. Each of us is important. No, it’s

more—each of us is crucial and irreplaceable.

You offer something to the world that cannot

be fulfilled by someone else.

We can use this understanding to accept and

tolerate where we differ. We can also go a step

further—to see those different from us as

completing us. We can appreciate how the other

person’s differences serve our community, and

actually make us all better, more complete

and beautiful.

Wishing you a healthy, sweet and beautiful

New Year!

Thought to Ponder

“Life’s like a play: it’s not

the length, but the

excellence of the acting

that matters.”

― Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Founded November 5, 2014


15332 Antioch Street #169

Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

(310) 401-7690



Scott Wagenseller


Sue Pascoe


Laurie Rosenthal

Graphics Director

Manfred Hofer

Digital Content and Technology

Kurt Park


Jeff Ridgway

Grace Hiney

Jeff Parr


Bill Bruns

Contributing Writers

Laura Abruscato, Laurel Busby,

Libby Motika, Logan Taylor

Contributing Photographers

Bart Bartholomew, Shelby Pascoe


A bi-monthly newspaper mailed on the

first and third Wednesday of each month.

14,500 circulation includes zip code 90272

and Sullivan, Mandeville and Santa Mon -

ica Canyons.All content printed herein,

and in our digital editions, is copyrighted.


Palisades News

September 16, 2015 A forum for open discussion of community issues

Page 7


Kill the MRCA’s Stop-Sign Cameras

Astory in the Daily News (“WAZE App Blamed for

Traffic in Parks,” September 7) explained that

heavy traffic in local mountain parks, such as

Temescal Canyon, is the result of people using the trafficnavigating


“Traffic apps such as WAZE advertise routes through

parks like Franklin Canyon Park,” said Fernando Gomez,

chief ranger for the Mountains Recreation Conservatory

Authority (MRCA). “This has resulted in a substantial

increase in traffic and created a huge hazard for park users.”

Later in the story, Gomez concludes: “The park access

roads in most of our parks, such as Franklin Canyon

Park, or Temescal Gateway Park in Pacific Palisades, were

never intended to support the kind of volume that they

now do.”

Those of us who live in Pacific Palisades know the road

into Temescal soon deadends and that WAZE would not

send a driver there.

In the story, Gomez was not questioned about whether

the increase in people could be the result of hiking apps

or social media.

Palisades resident Warren Cereghino described a visit

to Temescal Gateway Park on August 27. “On the driveway

heading up into the park, about 20 yards north of the

marked crosswalk/entrance to the lower parking lot,

there are four traffic-counting cables stretched across the

Money May Not Be the Answer

I have been following the discussion of the homeless

in the Palisades and have personally communicated

with Officer Moore and written to Mayor Garcetti and

Councilman Bonin.

As a licensed psychologist, I worked in community

mental health for a number of years and am discouraged

that we seem a long way from effective solutions. Los

Angeles has a shameful and degrading problem with

homelessness, and our representatives need to learn from

other places that have been more successful.

Mr. Maceri presents a rather incomplete explanation of

the causes of and solutions to the problem of homeless

people living in public places (Palisades News, “Money

Sought for Homeless Solution,” September 2). His

advocacy that money would be well spent on hiring two

of his social workers is likely a poor investment.

The mantra “homelessness is not a crime” is off point

and leads to the failed conclusion that we all must accept

that people are free to live in very degraded conditions

and behave as they wish in the community. Mr. Maceri

would have us believe that the best we can do is cajole the

chronically homeless, who often have chronic substance

abuse and serious mental/behavior problems, into

accepting help of their choice.

A very important factor he did not mention is the

change in laws that coincided with the closing of mental

hospitals and other residential facilities.

Thanks to the misguided notion of “civil liberties,”

we are now very limited in getting anyone to accept

shelter and needed medical and psychiatric treatment.

roadway and anchored by some kind of nails and tape,

with the terminal part looped around a tree on the left

side. I thought to myself, ‘Oh, they’re counting traffic.

Hmm, I wonder why?’

“When I got up to the camera-enforced stop sign I

saw a metal pole extending about 15 to 20 feet into the

air with some kind of device on top. I surmise that it is a

signal receiver for the tire-counting cables I noted above.

The pole is connected to the stop-sign post and a metal

box is chained to the post and the pole at the bottom.”

A few days later, our editor visited the park and found

the devices gone.

Why? And why MRCA’s sudden interest in counting

cars? The Daily News story concluded: “The warning

comes as senators in Sacramento plan to discuss in

January if the nine cameras installed at stop signs

overseen by the conservation authority are justified.”

Ah ha! The Daily News story was not about WAZE or

increased car traffic, it was about stop-sign cameras.

MRCA operates photo-enforced stop sign cameras,

which generate $1.5 million annually in gross revenue.

Tickets ($100 for the first offense) are mailed to the

registered owner of the vehicle as identified from a

photo of the rear license plate. The tickets are

administrative citations, which don’t count against an

individual driving record, but are turned over to a


After the investment of considerable police and professional

time, a disturbed or disabled person can be

placed on a 72-hour hold if they are gravely disabled or

present an imminent danger to themselves or others.

After 72 hours a court hearing is required to hold

someone for up to two weeks.

This is very costly as well as ineffective with chronic

populations. Even two weeks is too short a time to begin

to help someone with multiple problems, so people are

back on the street in the same condition. As a result, the

trend has been to virtually give up on taking even the

most grievously disabled or disruptive people in for an

evaluation. What’s the point?

Another factor has been the loss of will to enforce laws

and regulations pertaining to public behavior and the

use of public facilities. Not all cities tolerate skid row,

encampments on hillsides, public intoxication, disturbing

the peace, etc. Right now Los Angeles turns a blind eye

to what used to be and should be unacceptable.

Case in point is the man who appears to be both

physically and psychiatrically gravely disabled who spends

his whole day lying on the concrete sidewalks of the

Palisades. He appears in very compromised physical

health, is often barely clothed, and almost always surrounded

by trash. He is easily agitated, rants, and

threatens people.

I find his condition as well as his impact on the

community to be dreadful. Officer Moore told me that

when asked, this man says he doesn’t want help, and

therefore nothing can be done. After recently threatening

a resident, he was finally taken in for what I assume was

collection agency if not paid.

When the cameras first appeared in Temescal in 2007,

former Beverly Hills attorney, local activist and resident

Jack Allen contended that the park deliberately ignored

state law and national standards to raise revenue: The

state Vehicle Code authorizes using automated traffic

enforcement at stop signals, not stop signs.

Many agree with his analysis, and last May Senate

Republican Leader Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar) introduced

a bill to kill the cameras.

Pacific Palisades Community Council reached out to

State Senators Fran Pavley, Huff and Ben Allen, asking

them to support SB 218 to end stop-sign photo enforcement.

The PPCC wrote: “The two photo enforcement

machines MRCA placed in Pacific Palisades’ Temescal

Canyon Gateway Park are at intersections with no history

of accidents or injury and very little traffic. As a result,

PPCC has received numerous complaints about erroneous

enforcement by these machines.”

Senate Natural Resources Committee Chair Pavley

blocked the bill in May in order to curb speeding in the

parks and save stop-sign revenue. In January 2016, SB

218 will return to the committee for a second time.

The News agrees with Huff, Allen and the PPCC, and

thinks it is time for MRCA to retire stop-sign cameras.

a 72-hour evaluation and then released with absolutely

no improvement in either his condition or behavior.

In sum, three things need to be changed. First, commitment

laws need to be such that people in need of

intervention can be held for a longer period so evaluation

and meaningful treatment become possible.

Can anyone really argue that our current approach

is compassionate to let chronically psychotic people lie

on the sidewalk all day, because they are able to say,

“I’m fine and can take of myself?”

Second, some of our taxes should be directed to provide

sufficient low-cost facilities that will house people quickly.

This will entail simplifying the many regulations associated

with putting a roof over someone’s head.

Finally, our representatives need to be serious about

not letting people live in public spaces, disturb the rest

of the community, and break laws. I suggest we spend

our money on a campaign to get Mayor Garcetti and

other representatives to very actively get going on

changing the paradigm and making this a priority.

Linda R. Friar, Ph.D.

Caruso’s Liquor License Plans

Thank you so much for the article on the Caruso plan

for liquor licenses (September 2). It sounds like he wants

to open a movie theater and surround it with a food

(Continued on Page 8)

Palisades News welcomes all letters, which may be mailed to Please include a name, address

and telephone number so we may reach you. Letters do not

necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Palisades News.

Page 8 Palisades News September 16, 2015


(Continued from Page 7)

court full of bars, and he won’t guarantee

reasonable closing and delivery hours as

evidenced with his fight over the liquor

license at the Oak Room.

I live in the Alphabet Streets, the

neighborhood most affected by Caruso

traffic. I don’t want 10 venues with liquor

licenses. I don’t want restaurants that

stay open until 2 a.m. so that Caruso can

make some more money off the bars. I

don’t want a one-way street that will

drive traffic into the Alphabet Streets.

Our neighborhood is already overrun

with cars from the village. Our streets

are less than 24 feet wide. It’s already a

dangerous situation because of the

crowded conditions. Our local fire station

wants us to have parking on one side of

the street because they can’t get their

truck through the street, but the city

won’t grant it. Now we have to deal with

drunks and workers going home after 2

a.m.? It’s not safe.

I went through Jonathan Gold’s list of

101 Best Restaurants in Los Angeles.

Only one stayed open until 2 a.m. The

rest closed at 10 or 10:30 p.m. and stayed

open a little later on weekends. It doesn’t

sound like Caruso is looking for quality,

just quantity. We have to fight this. We

don’t need 10 venues with liquor licenses

and we have to restrict the house of

operation and delivery.

Neighbors, please write to our City

Council represen tative Mike Bonin

( and

Debbie Dyner-Harris (Debbie.dynerharris

@lacity. org) in Bonin’s office. Tell them

not to approve this plan. Also write to

Mustafa Blorfroshan (zaki.mustafa

@lacity. org) at DOT and Nazario Sauceda

(, Director-City of

L.A. Bureau of Street Services, about the

one-way street. If we can’t use Swarthmore

from the Alphabet Streets, this will force

more cars onto Monument and Via de la

Paz. Thank you.

Patrice Dobrowitsky

Women’s Self-Defense Class

Our Women’s Self-Defense Course was

a smashing success. We had five women

sign up. The first hour we spent going

over a PowerPoint Presentation and

discussed how to recognize and avoid

potentially dangerous situations. The ladies

learned about anatomy and physiology,

how to use pressure points, how to

punch and kick, escape from a hold, etc.

Then we spent three hours at the park,

where we practiced various techniques.

Everyone had a good time and learned

a lot. We’re going to set up another class

on September 19. Hopefully, we can get

more people interested. Thanks for putting

a story in the paper (August 19).

Bill Shuttic

Ultimate Health



Sweet Rose Creamery, an artisanal ice

cream shop owned by Palisadians Josh Loeb

and Zoe Nathan, opened in August. Located

next to Palisades Hi-Tech on Monument

Street (at Sunset). Visit:

or call: (310) 260-2663.

Roast: The deli-style eatery, which opened

its first location in Brentwood in 2012,

opened in the Highlands Village (former site

of Chez Mimi restaurant) over Labor Day.

Chef Whitney Werner describes Roast as a

new-style deli that includes organic meats

and roasted vegetables ($12.95 to $16.95

for sandwiches and entrées with sides) that

can be eaten in the restaurant or delivered

for a home-cooked-style meal. Call (310)

230-6000 or visit:


The QT Fitness studio, which opened in

2013 in the Highlands Village by the Beach,

as a woman’s-only fitness center offering

spin, barre and yoga classes, closed in August.

Owner was Danielle Robinson.

The heavily utilized Goodwill Center

closed September 1.


ATAM (Academy of Technology, Art

and Music) celebrated its third anniversary

in August. Founded by Anthony Wamble

in 2012, this is a center for students, young

and old, to learn coding, create computer

games and stay abreast of the most modern

technology. Located at 881 Alma Real Dr.

Visit: or call (310)

573-0012 or e-mail techandmusicteacher


Pacific Palisades Chamber of Commerce

has a new website that includes a

member directory, an event calendar listing

of community resources and event photos.



Retail store-front space available at 835,

843 and 859 Via de la Paz.

(Editor’s note: For business announcements,

send an email to

Atria Offers Programs

Atria Senior Living, at 15441 Sunset

Blvd. (across from Gelson’s), offers its programs

free to Palisades residents. Please

RSVP to (310) 573-9545.

Rosh Hashana will be celebrated 10:30

a.m. on Thursday, September 17 with Ter

Liberstein. That afternoon at 3:30 p.m.

Frank Sinatra impersonator Jimmy Brewster

will perform.

Opera singer Francesca Sola performs

on Thursday, September 24 at 3:30 p.m.





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(Continued from Page 1)

been told that security costs would be covered

by the national government—but wants

assurance that this will still be true in 2024.

A $1.4 billion lawsuit, filed by disabled

residents, requires the City to spend $31

million a year for 30 years to repair business

and residential sidewalks. Once they are

fixed, maintenance will revert to property

owners. Bonin pointed out that in most

cities, sidewalks are the property owners’

responsibility. What has yet to be decided

is which streets will be fixed first.

Bonin is also pushing for more police

and firefighters. “The last 10 years LAFD

has been decimated,” he said, noting he

fought to get five recruiting classes this year,

but with the number of retirees, it won’t

mean an overall gain in firefighters. He also

promised he is fighting to restore Station

69’s Engine Company (Sunset at Carey).

“It’s high on the list for restoration.”

Council President Chris Spitz then allowed

audience members to ask questions,

but specified that once a question was asked

about a subject, a different topic had to be


One resident objected to the beekeeping

ordinance because he said it was not properly

vetted. Lawmakers tentatively approved

it on September 2 and asked City lawyers

to finalize the wording before giving it a

final approval.

“Testimony in my district is nine to one

in favor of the ordinance,” Bonin said. “It

is modeled after other cities, including

Santa Monica.”

A resident pressed Bonin about the 17000

Sunset apartment project (just west of Marquez

Avenue), which is scheduled to go before

the West L.A. Planning Commission on

December 2. Developer Arman Gabay initially

sought 49 units and some residents objected

to the size of the project. PPCC asked

that prior to an issuance of a Coastal Devel-

opment Permit, a Focused EIR be prepared.

“I am monitoring the 17000 Sunset project

closely, and I have heard the concerns

about slope instability and traffic impacts,”

Bonin said. “I understand the developer is

reworking the proposal, and will be reducing

by half the number of units, which

could reduce some of the traffic impacts.

I will be eager to hear what the community

things about the revised proposal.”

The developer is not expected to present

revised plans to the PPCC.

Another question concerned the possibility

of a pedestrian bridge over PCH at

Potrero Canyon, which would allow hikers,

bikers and beach-goers to access the beach

without detouring to Temescal Canyon

Road. Bonin said it was being considered,

but there’s currently no funding available.

A Riviera resident said, “I’m concerned

about overdevelopment, specifically the

Archer School and Caruso projects, and

the overlapping construction.”

Bonin said that a traffic impact study for

Caruso Affiliated’s Palisades Village project

had not yet been submitted to the City. He

praised Archer for its proposed traffic plan,

which will require 70 percent of all students

to use a carpool (three or more) or buses.

“There will be less traffic than there is now,”

Bonin said, noting that he wants collaboration

between all the schools along that stretch

of Sunset to see who could have the fewest

number of cars coming to campus daily.

“A lot of residents came to me and want -

ed a three-year window for [Archer] construction,”

said Bonin, who believes the

biggest traffic impact will be hauling, which

is scheduled to be done in the summer

when schools are closed.

“When will Palisades Drive be repaved?”

a Highlands resident asked.

“It is a really, really long road [more than

three miles],” Bonin said. “If I were to re -

pave the street, it would be my District’s entire

budget for a year.” But then he gave the

good news that it will be repaved in segments

over the next three to four years.


(Continued from Page 1)

John McDonald (Tahitian Terrace).

Although the City has reached out to

both owners, neither are obligated to work

with the City, because mobile home parks

are under the jurisdiction of the state.

Bureau of Engineering (BOE) geologist

Robert Hancock has spearheaded a plan

that includes dewatering wells and a massive

wall that will support vertically 65 feet

of soil.

“It won’t stop the hillside from sliding,

but it will help,” Hancock said at a meeting

at the Palisades Library on September 2.

The meeting was held to discuss environmental

concerns before the project first

goes through the City departments and

then the Coastal Commission for approval.

BOE Environmental Specialist James

Tebbetts explained that three dewatering

wells will be added to the two that are already

located under Asilomar.

When the water reaches a certain point

in a well, it will trigger a pump that takes

the water to the Asilomar drain, then to Las

Pulgas Canyon stormwater drain and on to

the Hyperion.

Nearly all of the water on the El Medio

mesa drains downward to Asilomar.

Although this is considered an emergency

project and a safety issue, the earliest construction

will likely start on the dewatering

wells is February. After the environmental

review passes the City, the project must be

approved by the Coastal Commission. “We

can’t put a spade into the ground until we

have the state permit,” Tebbetts said.

Once construction starts, it will take

about six months.

“We’ve been watching [this landslide] for

years. It keeps moving slowly,” Hancock

said. “We’ve been trying to find the money.”

Three million dollars have been raised

through the City and will be used for the

wells and the design of the wall.

Page 10 Palisades News September 16, 2015

Investigation of Student Petition Addressed


Staff Writer

The effects of last spring’s student petition

to oust Palisades Charter High

School Principal Pam Magee continued

to be addressed at the August 18 board

meeting with a new focus on whether any

teachers may have been involved.

Social studies teacher John Rauschuber

spoke during public comment about the

issue. He described first hearing about the

petition when student Isabel Kelly came to

his classroom during a break to ask for permission

to gather signatures. More than

1,200 students eventually signed the document.

Kelly, a senior, chose not to comment

on the issue to the Palisades News.

Rauschuber said he allowed her presentation,

and said she “began an impassioned

speech,” which he let extend into about a

minute of class time. He said she “personified

raw courage” and “should be celebrated

for what she saw as an injustice.” He also said

that as a social studies teacher, he felt that

this issue was not inappropriate to discuss

in class since the department “emphasizes

empowerment,” and last school year his class

discussed varied events, whether they occurred

at PaliHi or were of national interest.

During the 2014-15 school year, the administration

and the faculty had been involved

in an at-times contentious contract

negotiations and bell schedule discussions

that had eventually required mediation to


In the spring, the student petition was

presented to the board in the midst of the

evaluation process for Magee, who came

to PaliHi in 2011. The board consequently

hired an investigator to assess how much

weight to give the petition in Magee’s evaluation,

and this investigator more recently

began working to assess whether there was

any teacher misconduct involved. The results

of both investigations are confidential

due to their focus on personnel matters.

The portion of the board members who

are not faculty, staff or students, spent about

an hour in closed session discussing the

agenda item “Public Employee Discipline/

Dismissal/Release,” and the issue was also

addressed during the open meeting more


Spanish teacher and new board member

Alex Shuhgalter said he would like to discuss

ways to create a better climate on campus

by starting afresh after a difficult previous

school year. “Do we really want peace or a

cool climate on campus?” he said.

Magee, in a phone interview with the

News, said that she is seeking to create a new

positive focus for the school year. However,

both board members and parents had contacted

the administration with concerns

about potential “misuse of instructional

time or indoctrination of students.”

Last spring, the News also received two

letters from parents complaining about

these issues.

Magee added that the investigation is

not restricted to the petition, but includes

broader concerns. The idea is to develop a

“better understanding” of what occurred

and to make sure that all instructional

“time is being used appropriately.”

She said the administration is “doing our

due diligence” to ensure “that kids are getting

an education and not getting involved

in adult issues—not becoming negotiators

for the adults.”

Currently, she said the investigation is

simply gathering information, and at this

point, she did not think that its findings

would end with any teacher dismissals.

Magee also said she is working to address

the petition’s complaints. During registration,

time was set aside to teach students

about existing school ways to handle issues

during a presentation that also included

members of the Student Diversity Task Force.

Another part of the effort includes creating

a student bill of rights. About 70 students

have thus far indicated an interest in

the project, which will include researching

their current rights and creating an action

plan that will also address changes they envision.

She said Kelly, a senior stopped by

her office to talk recently and indicated an

interest in working with the group.

“We are working hard to let all students

know that they matter and that their voices

are heard,” Magee said. “If there are a large

group of students that feel like their issues

aren’t being heard, then I want them to be

heard. I think it’s important that their issues

are addressed.”

In a related issue, the L.A. District Attorney’s

office had contacted the board to address

whether a previous closed meeting to

discuss how the petition affected Magee’s

evaluation should have instead proceeded

in an open format. According to the board,

the DA’s office, after an inquiry, sent a letter

to the school stating, “After review of the

matter, we believe no violation occurred.”

Music Class For Children

Woman’s Club member Ingrid Vinje teaches a music class for children two to

four years old from 10 to 10:45 a.m. on Tuesday, September 22, at the Club, 901

Haverford Ave. A parent or caregiver is required and one adult per child, please.

The class is free for Club members and their guests.

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September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 11


Workshop Set

For Sept. 20

Awater-wise workshop will be held

from 1 to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, September

20, at the Woman’s Club,

901 Haverford Ave.

The event is sponsored by Palisades

Beautiful, the Pacific Palisades Garden Club,

Mia Lehrer + Associates, Tree People, Rain

Barrels International, Surfrider Foundation,

Theodore Payne Foundation, World

Wide Exotics and LADWP. There will be

presentations, discussions and refreshments.

Admission is free, but RSVP to

Included in the presentation will be an

overview of the climatic microenvironment

and climate reality, a landscape overview

(including plant material and trees), lawn

removal and rainwater harvesting.

After presentations, there will be a Q&A

with the experts. Closing will include a raffle

drawing for a rain barrel and a gift card

from Anawalt Lumber.

For those who preorder rain barrels, pick

up will be from 3:30 to 5:30 at Regal Cleaners

(rebates are available). The barrel has a

grass spigot for garden-hose attachment, a

screen to prevent mosquitoes from accessing

water and a side brass overflow. Cost

is $85. To order:

Chamber Hosts Annual Polo Tournament

If you do not know what a chukker is,

then head to the 23rd Annual Chamber

of Commerce Polo Tournament from

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday, October 4, at

Will Rogers State Historic Park.

Admission is free and there will be pony

rides for children. There is a $12 per-car

parking fee at the park.

Eight riders, atop galloping horses, hold

on with their left hand as they swing mallets

with the right hand at speeds of up to

35 miles per hour.

A chukker is a seven-and-half-minute

period of play, and there are six chukkers

in a match. Between matches enjoy divot

stomping: spectators come on the field

and stomp down torn-up turf.

Will Rogers was an avid polo player.

About the sport he wrote in his syndicated

column May 29, 1932: “After seeing kids

play polo against big guys, it only shows

that horses are the greatest equalizer in the

world. No matter what you weigh, the little

fellow is your equal on a horse.”

There will also be tours of the Will

Rogers’ home at 11 a.m., 1 and 2 p.m. Food

trucks will be available or bring a picnic.

This year’s major sponsor is Wells Fargo

The Private Bank. Sponsoring teams are

defending champion Amafi Estates; PerennialFinancial

Services; Pacific Palisades

Lions Club; RLB Architecture;Technology

for You!; and Wells Fargo.

Throwing in the ball before each match

will be Chamber President Adam Glazer;

Steve Ghysels (Wells Fargo); and Mr. and

Dealey to Speak September 24

Palisades Presbyterian Church will resume

its “Food for Thought” speaker series

on September 24 at 11:30 a.m. in Janes Hall,

off El Medio at Sunset. Reservations are

necessary. Call (310) 454-0366 to reserve

your seat and complimentary lunch (donation


The guest speaker will be Dave Dealey,

the son of Commander Samuel David

Dealey USN, who was the first and only

commanding officer of the submarine

USS Harder. He will speak about his father’s

naval career and the famous Harder.

Dealey will speak about the many coincidental

events and ironies which led up to

the tragic loss of the Harder, with all servicemen

aboard, on its sixth and final patrol

in August 1944.

A graduate of Santa Monica High School

and UC Berkeley, Dealey is a retired attorney.

He is a longtime active member of the

Pacific Palisades Optimist Club, American

Legion Post 283 and served on the Community


Miss Palisades Daniel Gottesman and

Danika Masi.

Al Epstein will be the play-by-play announcer.

Members of the Chamber organizing

committee are Ramis Sadrieh,

Technology for You!; Felice Densa of the Will

Rogers Polo Club and Chamber of Commerce

Executive Director Arnie Wishnick.

Call (310) 459-7963 or visit:

Art Association Speaker

To Discuss Buddhist Art

The Palisades Art Association will feature

Jason Hopper, who will lead a discussion

on the influences of Buddhism on

contemporary artists in the Himalaya region.

He will speak at 7 p.m. on Tuesday,

September 22, at the Palisades Woman’s

Club, 901 Haverford Ave.

Starting 2,500 years ago with the advent

of Buddhism in India, the sophisticated

symbolism of Buddhist art will be

explored. Then the discussion will skip

forward to look at how and why contemporary

artists in the Himalayas are using

Buddhist imagery in their artworks.

Throughout the conversation, participants

will examine images of some of the

most beautiful and exotic art from the

roof of the world.

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service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC.

Broker does not guarantee the accuracy of square footage,

lot size or other information concerning the condition or features of property provided by seller or obtained from public records or other sources,

and the buyer is advised to independently verify the accuracy of that

information through personal inspection and with appropriate professionals.

* Based on information total sales volume from California Real Estate Te echnology Services, Santa Barbara Association of REALTORS,

SANDICOR, Inc. for the period 1/1/2013 through 12/31/2013 in Los Angeles, Orange,

Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego,

Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties. Due to MLS reporting methods and allowable reporting policy,

this data is only informational and may not be completely accurate.


Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage does not guarantee the data accuracy. Data maintained by the MLS’s may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.

Palisades News

September 16, 2015 Page 13

Highlands Village

Undergoes Changes



In September 2013, PH Village Partners,

LLC purchased the former Highlands

Plaza (located at Sunset and Palisades

Drive) and renamed it Highlands Village by

the Beach.

According to Christian Irwin, VP, Commercial

Property, the locally-based owners

vowed to make the mini-mall “more neighborhood

friendly and become a center for

residents where they could have their dayto-day

needs met.”

Two years later, the transformation from

a strip-mall look and feel to a vibrant business

center is well underway.

The Village is about 25,000 sq. ft. and has

15 storefronts that offer a wide variety of

services: pharmacy, dry cleaner, nail salon,

bank, pet store, dance studio, mailbox store,

clothing store (happy L.A.), Starbucks and

three restaurants (Taste, Moku and Roast).

The original stark white frontage was repainted

in muted multi-tones. “We wanted

to make it look more ‘beach chic,’” said

Irwin, noting that new landscaping includ -

ed planting 19 palm trees. Teak benches

were added along several storefronts to

make the center more pedestrian-friendly.

Parking issues were also addressed. Although

there were 109 spaces, many were

used by store employees, and “we also had

a lot of carpools of golfers, hikers and bike

riders,” said Irwin, who grew up in Pacific

Palisades. “People would park for the entire

day, which left fewer spaces for shoppers.”

Now employees park on the street and

people are reminded if they are not shopping

or dining in the center, to park elsewhere.

One of the first store additions was a

Starbucks, which anchors the southernmost

space. A small playground and an

outside patio with shaded tables were

built so parents could enjoy a cup of coffee

while visiting with friends or watching

their children play.

Two tenants, QT Fitness and Goodwill

Industries, have recently left, but Irwin

emphasized that it was not the landlord’s


“Danielle Robinson [owner of QT] was

a valued tenant and we were sorry to see her

go,” Irwin said, noting she left to deal with

personal issues. Since PH Village Partners

believes a fitness studio is important to the

center, they are seeking a similar business

in that space.

“We’re still talking with Goodwill,”

Irwin said.

Irwin, the father of a two-year-old boy,

pointed to Ballet Conservatory West. “This

is one of my favorite places,” he said. “There

are 130 ballerinas who come here. Now

while their moms wait they can walk to

PH Village Partners’ Christian Irwin (right) welcomes new tenant Whitney Werner,

who owns Roast, to the Highlands Village by the Beach.

Photo: Wendy Price Anderson

Starbucks and have coffee.”

Moku, which specializes in sushi and

Thai food, opened recently and Roast debuted

over Labor Day weekend. A delistyle

eatery, Roast has organic meats and

Key Factors in Evaluating Palisades Properties


Special to the Palisades News

Home sellers need to determine an

asking price, and buyers need to

assess how much to offer and ultimately

what to pay for their new home.

Many rely on a professional realtor to help

with their decision, while others prefer to

do research online, and then rely on sites

such as Zillow for guidance.

It may help to understand some of the

nuances that an experienced realtor takes

into consideration when doing a comprehensive

evaluation of a Palisades home.

For example, certain neighborhoods are

generally more desirable than others, such

as the Huntington and others close to the

Village area. Similarly, homes on a heavily

trafficked street will logically be less desirable

than those on quieter locations.

Value is affected by whether a house has

a view or not, and how unobstructed and

from which rooms the view can be enjoyed.

Lots impacted by geological challenges or

other environmental issues will be of a

lesser value. How much of the property is

relatively useful, as compared with hillside

locations that may substantially limit the

usable yard, is another factor.

The legal tract a property is in can make

a significant difference in value, depending

on restrictions that may exist regarding the

height or size of a house. For example,

more than a third of the Palisades is located

in Tract 9300, which has a unique set of

conditions, covenants, and restrictions

(CC&R’s) enforced by the Civic League.

Many of the tracts in Marquez Knolls,

much of the area between El Medio and

Bien veneda, Castellammare, Pacific View

Estates and Sunset Mesa have restrictions

protecting views. CC&R’s obviously help to

preserve property values in some ways,

while imposing some limitations that to a

degree also may limit a site’s potential value.

Reliance on online evaluations systems

may be useful in many other communities

where far fewer variations exist between

and even within neighborhoods like the


As has been noted, Zillow and other similar

systems do not take into consideration

whether a house is on a 5,200 or 6,500

square foot lot in the Alphabet Streets.

They also have no way to factor in the

presence or quality of views that may exist,

nor anything about the condition of the

home or property. Moreover, those online

systems can vary as much as 10 to 20 percent

from each other on the same property.

Michael Edlen has been ranked in the top

1 percent of all agents in the country with

nearly $2 billion in sales. He has tracked

Pacific Palisades sales since 1987. Michael

can be reached at (310) 230-7373 or

roasted vegetables that can be eaten at the

restaurant or as takeout.

Taste, which recently received a full-liq -

uor license, will undergo renovations short -

ly as one of the conditions of lease renewal.

“This whole center is a project of passion,”

said Irwin, who recently appeared before

the Palisades Community Council to

seek support for an upscale convenience

store that would carry wine, cheese and

other small groceries in the 950-sq.-ft. space

next to Roast. “It would be a high-end market

and hours would follow those at the site,

9 a.m. to 10 p.m.”

Irwin, whose mother Michelle operates

the Michelle International beauty salon on

Swarthmore and whose uncle, Martin

McCrory, runs the beauty supply store on

the same street, said he has 15 relatives that

live or work in the Palisades. Even his wife

Alexana’s sister now lives near them.

“When my company bought the center,

my eyes lit up,” said the Syracuse University

graduate. “The partners who own the

property are local and care about the


The last Family Fun Day of the summer

will be held this Saturday, September 19

from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is free to

residents and includes music, pony rides,

a petting zoo, face painter and magician.


Page 14 Palisades News September 16, 2015

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September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 15

Hosting Jimmy Carter’s Book Tour


Palisades News Contributor

While watching former President

Jimmy Carter describe the details

of his recent cancer diagnosis

during a televised news conference, it

occurred to me that anyone who had ever

met him in person was not surprised by the

gracious manner in which he was now confronting

his own mortality. That congenial

style has long been his trademark.

His tireless energy has been on display

since he left the White House 35 years ago—

even now at the age of 90. His commitment

to international humanitarian work has

been well documented, particularly for his

beloved project, Habitat for Humanity.

The familiar smile he flashed often during

the press conference took me back to March

1985, when I stood on the steps of the Beverly

Wilshire Hotel anxiously awaiting his arrival.

I was to escort him during his Southern

California stop on his national book tour.

The publishing house for which I worked

had just released his most recent book, The

Blood of Abraham, a history of the ongoing

Middle East conflict in which he had become

deeply involved during his presidency.

Our company’s publicity depart ment

had planned a national tour for the book,

including major media appearances, as well

as bookstore events, which is where I came

into the picture.

As the local company rep, my job was to

select bookstores which would host events

and to accompany authors while they were

in town on their promotional tours. This

particular occasion seemed to have taken

on an even greater significance and created

quite a buzz for those in the bookselling

community. Hosting a former President

was considered quite an honor for most

Palisades resident Bob Vickrey and President Jimmy Carter during a 1985 book tour.

booksellers, no matter what their political

persuasion happened to be.

When Jimmy Carter’s limo arrived in the

Beverly Wilshire driveway under the breezeway

awning, I was almost certain that I

heard the faint sound of my knees knocking,

but remained adamant that I could

conceal my imploding anxiety.

Sure enough, when he stepped out of the

car flashing that famous grin, he said, “You

must be Bob. Are you ready to have a little

fun tomorrow?” I quickly relaxed and regained

steady footing as we retreated to

make our plans for the following day.

What I immediately observed about the

man with the well-known laid-back image,

was the noticeable urgency in his walk, as

well as his spirited manner—not exactly the

passive, sweater-wearing figure we’d seen

portrayed in his fireside chats during the

energy crisis in the late 1970s. I tried to keep

up with his pace as we approached his room

in the Presidential Suite, but I couldn’t help

but wonder why he had been unsuccessful

in conveying this contagious energy to the

nation while he was in office.

Despite the criticism he has received regarding

his perceived shortcomings during

his one-term administration, I’ve noticed

that even his harshest critics are usually

quick to acknowledge his charitable work

at home and abroad after he left office, a

concession ex-presidents rarely receive

from their adversaries.

I sat across from him in the luxurious

living room of the hotel suite and he asked,

“So, what’s on the docket for tomorrow,

and what do you need me to do?” I explained

the morning format I’d planned

with an informal breakfast for various local

booksellers that I’d invited to the downstairs

drawing room.

Carter revealed his admiration for those

who work in bookstores. He got quite a

chuckle when I told him of author Pat Conroy’s

opening line when once addressing a

breakfast gathering of booksellers, “Good

morning to all of you in the book business

who have taken the sacred vow of poverty.”

As we convened for our breakfast meeting

the following morning, he leaned toward

me and asked if I had brought my camera

along. He whispered, “People love to have

their picture taken with the President.”

By the time I returned with the camera,

he had already met every bookseller in the

room and was busily engaging each with

stories that would likely last a lifetime for

most of them. After breakfast, I took a snapshot

of each bookseller—every one of them

in virtually the same pose—with the President’s

arm draped around their shoulder.

When I took the last picture, he winked and

said, “I told you so.”

Before we adjourned, the President said,

“I think we need one more. I’d like one

taken of me with our host.”

Not surprisingly, that particular picture

still prominently resides on my bookshelf

to this very day. And I can almost hear him

say, “I told you so.”

Bob Vickrey is longtime Palisadian. His

columns appear in several Southwestern

newspapers including the Houston Chronicle.

This article was reprinted by permission

of the Waco Tribune-Herald.

Jong at Diesel

Erica Jong, who revolutionized the way

we look at love, marriage and sex in her

1973 bestseller Fear of Flying, will appear at

6:30 p.m. on Friday, September 25 at Diesel

Bookstore in the Brentwood Country Mart

to discuss her latest novel, Fear of Dying.

In the book, main character Vanessa

Wonderman watches her parents age, attends

doctor appointments with her pregnant

daughter, and sits by the hospital bed

of her husband, Asher, 15 years her senior.

With her best years as an actress behind

her, she’s discovering that beginnings are

easy, but endings can be hard.

Jong is also the author of seven awardwinning

collections of poetry and has written

several nonfiction books. She lives in

New York City and Connecticut.




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Page 16 Palisades News September 16, 2015

September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 17

Republican Speaker Series

Features Pete Peterson

Pete Peterson will lead a discussion

in the Pacific Palisades Republican

Club’s 2015 Speaker Series at 7:30

p.m. on Thursday, October 1, in the meeting

room at the Palisades Lutheran Church,

15905 Sunset Blvd. Residents are invited

and there is free parking off El Medio.

He will speak and lead a discussion titled

“‘Too Bad You’re a Republican’: Lessons

from the Trail and a Look at 2016.”

Peterson is Pepperdine’s School of Public

Policy interim dean and executive director

for the Davenport Institute. The Republican

candidate for California Secretary of State

in 2014, Peterson writes widely on public

engagement for a variety of major news

outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, Los

Angeles Times and San Francisco Chronicle.

Peterson is a leading national speaker on

issues related to civic participation and the

use of technology to make government

more responsive and transparent. He has

been a public affairs fellow at The Hoover

Institute, and he serves on the Leadership

Councils of the Public Policy Institute of

California and California Forward.

Call (310) 454-4345 or visit Pali sades

(Disclaimer: Palisades Lutheran Church

gives space for community groups to meet,

which does not imply an affiliation.)

Student Success Conference Oct. 17

Prominent L.A. independent school educators

will address “What Are the Proven

Keys to Student Success, Both in the School

and the Future?” from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

on Saturday, October 17, at the Luxe

Hotel, 11461 Sunset Blvd.

The fee is $179 per person and space is

limited. Call (818) 864-6725.

“This is going to be an extraordinary event

for parents,” said Sue Slotnick, the CEO and

co-founder of Educational Test Prep and

director of advancement at Village School.

Keynote speaker is Dr. Rob Evans, the

author of three books, including Family

Matters: How Schools Can Cope with the

Crisis in Childrearing. He will outline key

dilemmas in raising children and adolescents

today and offer concrete suggestions

for successful coping at home and school.

Following his presentation, parents can

attend different workshops, hosted by 10

experts on various topics.


Donny ‘Conn’ Claps;

Entertainer, Speaker

Donny Conn Claps, 85, passed

away September 2. He was a musician,

comedian, speaker and

creative spirit who entertained and enriched

the lives of family and friends.

He was born on January 3, 1930 in Waterbury,

Connecticut, where he attended

school and learned to play drums.

Claps graduated from the University of

Connecticut and was one of the founders

of Beta Sigma Gamma, the first intercultural

fraternity in New England.

After college in 1952, he toured the Unit -

ed States and Canada, with The Playmates,

pianist Chic Hetti and vocalist Morey Carr,

who were also from Waterbury.

The group’s song “Beep Beep,” the story

of a Nash Rambler and a Cadillac, was on

the Billboard Top 40 charts for 12 weeks. It

sold over one million copies and was award -

ed a gold disc. At the height of the song’s

popularity, the Playmates appeared on the

Milton Berle Show, December 3, 1958.

That same year, the group signed with

Roulette Records as the label’s first vocal


The Playmates followed up with a

chart-listing single in 1959, “What Is

Love,” and then again in 1960 with “Wait

for Me.” They recorded four albums for

Roulette before the group, which was

known for its between-song comedy and

banter, broke up in 1965.

Claps reinvented himself first as a

stand-up comedian, then as a professional

speaker. He later turned to comedy writing,

which opened his eyes to a career in

Donny “Conn” Claps

public speaking.

When that career took off in 1980,

Claps delivered more than 100 speeches a

year to all types of groups.

After he spoke, clients would ask him to

recommend keynote speakers for upcoming

conventions. Claps built a roster of qualified

speakers and shortly after founded Convention

Connection Speakers Bureau, one

of the first speaker bureaus to book lecturers

for conventions and business meetings.

Claps moved to Pacific Palisades in 1972.

He is survived by his wife of 58 years,

Joanne, and his children Kiela, Steven and

Koby and grandchildren Amanda and Kelly.

A memorial service will be held in October.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be

made to: HOLA (Hearts of Los Angeles

Youth), 2701 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 100, Los

Angeles, CA 90057 or visit:



The Palisades News welcomes submissions of obituary notices

for Palisadians, past and present. Notices must be 400 words or

less. A photo may be sent for possible inclusion. There is no charge

for the notice, nor the photo. For questions, or to submit, please

e-mail The desired deadline for submissions

is Thursday before the intended publication date (the

first and third Wednesday of the month).

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Palisades News

Page 18 September 16, 2015

Girls Volleyball Wants a Shot at State


Sports Writer

Under the guidance of head coach

Carlos Gray, the Palisades High

School girls volleyball team opened

its season on September 10 by defeating

defending Division II City champion Taft

High School.

The Dolphins opened Western League

play by hosting LACES yesterday, and will

remain home to play perennial City rival

Granada Hills today at 4 p.m.

Returning for his third season at PaliHi,

Gray is optimistic after having won his first

City title last year, and the 29th title overall

for the girls volleyball program.

“The expectation for this season is to

reach our full potential,” Gray told the Pali -

sades News. “This team’s ceiling is higher

than last year’s team. I really think that this

group could be special, but it will take a

long time and it is a long road to get there.”

Last year the Dophins beat Granada Hills

in four sets in the Division I City Championships,

but lost its first-round game in

the State playoffs.

The team began practicing the second

week of August, focusing on hitting drills,

passing and ball control, as well as holding


Gray is joined by assistant coach Anthony

Elizondo, who owns his own club team,

the Santa Monica Volleyball Club, and has

coached the Dolphins in previous years.

Key players to watch this season are returning

opposite Isabel Kelly, outside hitter

Sadie Gray, middle blocker Angel Echipue,

Setting ball for a teammate is co-captain Lucky Drageset.

outside hitter Bella Edwards, and the “glue”

of the team, libero Olivia Zelon.

Zelon, only a junior, has already committed

to play at the University of Texas in

Golf Tournament Winners

The L.A. Golf Academy hosted a

youth tournament on August 23 at

the Heroes Golf Course, a 9-hole,

3-par course locate on the grounds of the

West Los Angeles VA north campus.

Winners in the 5-to-7-year-old category

were Justin Tun, first, and Misha Zutler,

second. In the 8-to-10-year old category,

Peter Jen took first and Charlie Hayton

took second. In the 11-to-14-year-old

group, Gavin Loughran took first and

Rowan Jen was second.

For those who want to learn to play, a

golf development program is held for juniors,

ages 7 to 16, Monday through Thursday

from 3:30 to 5 p.m. and on Friday from

4 to 5:30 p.m. The co-ed program allows

students to come on a daily basis.

A special day of golf is planned for

Wednesday, September 23. Youth can

choose half day (9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

or 1 to 3:30 p.m.) or full day (9:30 a.m. to

3:30 p.m.).

Private lessons are available for youth

and adult, and all levels are welcome.

The Academy caters to Brentwood, Santa

Monica, Pacific Palisades, Westwood and

Beverly Hills.

All lessons are taught by PGA Teaching

Professional Carlos Rodriquez, who has

more than 20 years of experience. He previously

worked as an assistant golf pro at

Indian Spring County Club in Silver

Spring, Maryland.

Rodriquez’s philosophy centers on harmony

between the mental and physical

aspects of the golf game. He also insists all

youth learn proper golfing etiquette. A

U.S. Marine, Rodriquez is also a highlyrespected

Aikido practitioner.

Email: or call

(310) 230-2052 or visit:

Photo: Logan Taylor

2017. She will be coached by previous Pali -

sades High star volleyballer Jerritt Elliott.

“Olivia is the best defensive player that

I have ever coached in all of my 26 years

of coaching,” Gray said.

With these key players as well as returning

co-captains and setters Lucky Drageset

and Delaney Arth, the Dolphins look as

though they will be competing at an even

Co-captain Isabel Kelly prepares to spike against an opponent.

Photo: Logan Taylor

higher level of play than last year’s team.

When asked how this season will compare

to last season, Gray replied, “I hope

similar. Last year we were City champions.

We lost some key pieces, but for the most

part all of the main people are here. It is primarily

realizing our potential and understanding

that regardless of how good we

are on paper, we have to work.”

Y Fall Sports and Events

Early bird pricing is still available

through Friday, September 18 for the

Palisades-Malibu YMCA’s fall sports

at Simon Meadow that run through Saturday,

November 21.

A Punt, Pass and Kick competition for

boys and girls ages 6-13 will take place at

Simon Meadow on Saturday, September

19 from 9 a.m. to noon and will include

prizes and scrimmage games.

An 8-week cross-country clinic will have

youth ages 6 to 12 running through Tem -

escal Canyon and improving their endur -

ance on Sundays from September 27 to

November 15.

On October 3, the Palisades-Malibu

YMCA’s Simon Meadow will be filled with

the sounds of children playing flag football

and soccer as well as the bright orange colors

of the annual pumpkin patch.

Flag football is offered for ages 6 to 8 and

ages 9 to 11. The co-ed league practices

weekly and has games on Saturdays.

YMCA soccer has three co-ed divisions—ages

1.5 to almost 3, 3-4 and 5-6.

All the age groups play on Saturdays and

the 5-6 year olds have an additional practice

during the week.

Contact YMCA Sports Coordinator

Rashad Rhodes (310) 454-5591 or rashad -


September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 19

Kelly ‘Malibu’ Hayes Doesn’t Miss a Play

Former Palisades High School wide receiver

Kelly “Malibu” Hayes was sitting

next to announcer Al Michaels during

NBC’s coverage of the NFL’s season opener

between the New England Patriots and the

Pittsburgh Steelers on September 10.

Hayes, who has been Michaels’ spotter for

every football game since 1978, listened as

Michaels reported that Steeler coaches were

hearing the Patriots’ radio broadcast in their

headsets, but Hayes’ eyes were focused on

the field. The “eargate” problem persisted

most of the first half before it was fixed

(and the Patriots came out on top, 28-21).

According to a feature by L.A. Times

columnist Chris Erskine, Hayes has been

working behind the scenes for 30 NFL seasons

(and 11 Super Bowls) with Michaels.

He has been responsible for making sure

that Michaels has the right name and number

for the players making the play.

It was reported that during the football

season, Hayes spends about 10 hours a week

on his board, organizing stats and notes. He

serves as a second set of eyes in a darkened

booth, where Michaels is bombarded with

Watch Palisades NFL Players

If you follow the NFL Giants, Browns,

Buccaneers or Redskins this season,

chances are you’ll see a player from

Pacific Palisades in action.

Brothers Geoff and Mitchell Schwartz

are former PaliHi standouts. Geoff graduated

in 2004, before going to the University

of Oregon. The 6-6, 340-pound offensive

guard was drafted in 2008 and played for

the Panthers, Vikings and Chiefs before he

was traded to the Giants in 2014.

Mitchell graduated in 2007 and attended

UC Berkeley. The 6-5, 320-pound offensive

tackle was first-team All-Pac 12 his senior

year. He was drafted in the second round in

2012 by the Cleveland Browns.

Fellow Berkeley Bear Chris Conte, who

grew up in the El Medio Bluffs area, graduated

from Loyola High in 2007. The 6-2,

203-pound safety was drafted in the third

round in 2011 by the Chicago Bears. He

signed a one-year contract with Tampa

Bay last March.

Kai Forbath, who grew up in the Highlands,

played for Notre Dame High before

attending UCLA. Although he was projected

as the second-best kicker in the 2011

draft, the 5-9, 197-pound kicker was not

selected. He later signed with the Dallas

Cowboys as a rookie free agent. He played

for Tampa Bay and then joined the Washington

Redskins in 2012.

television distractions: reading promotions

and hearing countdown to ads. Within seconds,

for example, Hayes gives Michaels

the name of the intended receiver and the

defender who knocked the ball away.

Hayes grew up in Malibu and played Pop

Warner in Venice before playing at PaliHi

against future NFL stars like Warren Moon

and Wendell Tyler. After graduating PaliHi

in 1974, he attended Boston University.

During his senior year there in 1978 he went

to golf’s U.S. Open to research his thesis on

how networks covered the event. This led to

a position as a “gofer” for ABC, which is how

he heard Michaels was looking for a spotter.

Hayes called him and said he could do it.

In Erskine’s story (September 10), Hayes remembers:

“I showed up in Lincoln. Game

was Penn State versus Nebraska . . . I remember

being scared to death.”

At the beginning of his career, Hayes had

other jobs, including selling ads for magazines

(Penthouse) and then starting his own sports

production company. But on weekends, he

traveled to join Michaels in the booth.

Hayes acquired his “Malibu” nickname

from Michaels, but has since traded his

surfboard for skis and swapped the beach

lifestyle for Aspen, Colorado.

According to the Times, Hayes jogs every

day, including pregame runs around stadiums,

and pens a wine column for the Aspen

Times. Not a bad life for a PaliHi Dolphin.


Copa De Dillon Tourney This Sunday

The second annual soccer tournament, Copa de Dillon, will be held at Palisades

High School at 4 p.m. on Sunday, September 20. A minimum donation of $350

per team is sought and will be used to raise money for scholarships for the Dillon

Henry Foundation.

Henry, who played AYSO, high school and club soccer, died in a car accident

in June 2007. The idea for the tourney came from Dillon’s good friends David

Lau, Gabe Lister and Elliot Wainman to honor his birthday on September 24.

Last year’s event had eight teams and raised almost $10,000. This year there

will be 12 teams that will play in a single-elimination format.

Admission is free, and food will be offered by Café Vida, Noah’s Bagels, Tivoli Café,

Yogurt Shoppe, Juice Crafters, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Ralphs and Pearl Dragon.

For more information or to sponsor/donate, contact:

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Page 20 Palisades News September 16, 2015

Medea: A Tale of Displacement


Palisades News Contributor

The flight from persecution propels

immigrants to take extraordinary

risks. The successful ones celebrate

the end of unspeakable hardships and

fear. But this is only the beginning chapter

for refugees; what follow are the challenges

of starting a new life in a foreign

place, away from family and isolated in

cultural unknowns.

Playwright Luis Alfaro takes up this second

chapter in Mojada: A Medea in Los Angeles,

a re-imagining of Euripides’ tragedy

that focuses on a Mexican family who have

fled Michoacán to the barrio of East L.A.

Staged at the Getty Villa, the 90-minute

drama artfully and sensitively demonstrates

how the family copes with displacement

leaving Mexico with no sign, no welcome

in that “other America.”

Medea and Hason (Jason for those more

familiar with Medea), their son Acan and

Tita, a servant with healing powers, are

finding their footing. Medea, a brilliant

seamstress in Mexico, now sews men’s collars

for humiliating wages.

Hason has found promising work in

construction in the employ of Armida, a

successful Mexican developer, who intends

to make Hason part of her business. Acan

Sabina Zuniga Varela portrays Medea in

Luis Alfaro’s adaptation. Photo: Craig Schwartz

is a boy, eagerly molting into an American,

ditching his huaraches for tennies, Papa

for Dad.

Subtly, director Jessica Kubzansky

guides us toward the widening chasm between

Medea and Hason: Medea clings to

the traditions and values of Mexico;

Hason sees his path to success in America

by allying himself with Armida, compromising

his relationship to Medea. “For

me, she is a door, she’s given us a chance,

I want more,” he says.

The triangle tightens as Armida gnaws

at the nontraditional bond between Hason

and Medea by sealing her “business” pact

with Hason in marriage, and mocking

Medea for “thinking like an immigrant.”

Being childless, Armida convulses Medea

with the deepest cut a mother can imagine.

She will adopt Acan, promising that he will

inherit all she has.

“Yes, she has me by the balls,” Hason

says in pleading with Medea to accept his

alliance with Armida. “Let her flirt, let her

fall in love, it’s a small price to pay. We’ve

worked too hard for this.”

This being Medea, the inevitable tragedy

that Euripides set in motion in the 5th century

winds its way to the inexorable end.

In looking for a way to bring this classical

drama to a contemporary audience,

Alfaro says he is just a chronicler and lets

the classics talk to us. Choosing to frame

this Medea within an immigrant story, Alfaro

is turning this into a family story, a

story about love.

“Luis’ Medea lets me understand all the

participants,” says Kubzansky, who is codirector

of The Theatre @ Boston Court

in Pasadena.

“This is a painful, familiar love story

about people navigating a new world when

they don’t understand the rules.”

The Getty production beautifully comprehends

what is Mexican. “Underneath

us is Azlan, our spiritual land,” Alfaro says,

adding that the cast is an all-professional

Latino team.

Tita invites us into this deep, rich history

as she enters the stage at the outset holding

two large palm fronds. Waving them like

bird wings, she invokes the past—the calls

of the Michoacán bird—and the present—the

helicopters patrolling overhead.

In the end, Alfaro’s Medea is intimate,

not grand, which brings its tragic end

even closer to us.

Mojada: A Medea in Los Angeles continues

at the Getty Villa at 8 p.m. Thursdays

through Saturdays through October 3.

For tickets ($40-$45), call (310) 440-7300.

On Thursdays, light hors d’oeuvres and

cocktails will be served on the Villa’s

South Balcony ($40). On Fridays and Saturdays,

a prix-fixe dinner with wine pairings

will be offered in the private dining

room ($70, $90 with wine). Reservations:

(310) 440-6033.


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September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 21

The Object Lesson Chronicles Our Past


Palisades News Contributor

There used to be a popular fundraiser

at my brother’s school. For a dollar,

you could pick a shipping box, contents

unknown. You’d hope to hit the jackpot,

but were willing to part with a buck

just to see what was inside.

Curiosity, the very human drive to discover,

is at the heart of Geoff Sobelle’s latest

work, The Object Lesson, directed by David

Neumann and at the Kirk Douglas Theatre

through October 4.

Sobelle, who grew up in the Palisades,

has pursued his curiosity through performance,

which he thinks of as a metaphor for

human experience.

This experiment explodes to the full in

The Object Lesson. The Douglas auditorium

is overwhelmed with boxes, stacked to the

rafters all around. Over 3,000 shipping boxes

contain treasures from Everyman’s attic,

lovingly wrapped in paper and labeled. As

the doors open to the performance space,

audience members are free to roam, open

boxes, examine the contents and find a

perch on a box to watch the drama unfold.

Sobelle walks in and around the boxes,

mingling with the crowd as they satisfy

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The annual Las Doradas luncheon, fund -

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a.m. on Saturday, September 26 in Brentwood.

In addition to the catered lunch, there will

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The deadline to RSVP is September 19. Contact

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their curiosity.

In past performances, Sobelle amped the

proceedings with his own magic and clowning

(he studied physical theatre, such as buffoonery

and Commedia dell’arte clowning

at the L’Ecole Internationale de Theatre

Jacques Lecoq), but this piece is paced in

reverie. As he inventories the contents of

various boxes, he, and we, resurrect our own

memories. Many are familiar—the Christmas

decorations, the stuffed animals, love

letters, rotary phone, birthday party decorations.

But Sobelle is not content with the

expected, pulling out sublimely ridiculous

items: a toothbrush and toothpaste, which

he proceeds to use; miles and miles of electric

cord or tree roots; a head of lettuce, carrots

and tomatoes, which he chops into a

salad—while tap dancing on ice skates!

“I choose the stuff, I’ve collected all of it,”

Sobelle told the Palisades News in an interview.

And while some of it is personal to

him, Sobelle says it’s up to the audience to

draw their own conclusions. “I am not here

to help with the meaning. Some things are

valuable, some are crap. I was laughing about

the idea of an archeological excavation. We

go to Pompeii trying to find antiquities, but

what we’re really doing is rooting around

in somebody’s garbage, 2000 years old.”

As Sobelle moves around the space, uncovering

fragments of his past, he is uncovering

our past. “I see the piece as more about

the audience than about me,” he says. “I

think the project works empathetically and


While the pace is deliberately slow, meditative

even, Sobelle feels the point of it is to

quiet everything. “Some people can’t handle

it and they walk out.” But these moments

of pause and reflection, he says, are for us.

We keep our eye on Sobelle, remembering

that he is an entertainer, who believes comedy



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Geoff Sobelle performs his culinary task on ice skates.

is the highest order of art. “Laughter allows

an audience to open, become vulnerable and

experience the full realm of human emotion

to discover a new plane of experience.”

And he doesn’t disappoint us. The bits

with audience participation are killing. In

choosing his “victims,” he says he looks for

several things, gauging chemistry and how

much fun they’re having. Certainly the 10-

minute dinner date tops the evening. Choosing

a woman from the audience, he escorts

her to dinner, which he prepares with the

right amount of atmosphere and élan.



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Sobelle credits his first Cirque du Soleil for

his life’s passion. “I loved that first cirque

under the tent on the Santa Monica Pier. My

dream as a boy was to join the Cirque, so later

when I found the Lecoq School, I was still

bitten. I was excited by all those clowns. I was

interested in this inventive spectacle, really

live. It made me laugh and made me think.”

The Object Lesson makes us laugh and

makes us think too.

Performances continue Wednesdays

through Sundays at the Kirk Douglas Theatre

in Culver City. For tickets, call (213)

628-2772 or visit



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Palisades News

Page 22 September 16, 2015

Soboroff Collects Famous Typewriters

Story and photos by LAURIE ROSENTHAL

Staff Writer

Steve Soboroff’s entry into collecting typewriters

occurred solely by happenstance. In 2005, with

five kids in private school, the longtime Palisadian

decided to sell his Sandy Koufax glove at a Sotheby’s

auction in New York. The next item up at the auction

was columnist Jim Murray’s typewriter.

“The Dodgers were bidding on it. The Los Angeles

Times was bidding on it,” Soboroff said. “Murray won

the Sportswriter of the Year Award 14 times. Nobody

else has won it twice.”

Soboroff paid $18,000 for the typewrit er—a Remington

Model J—and an expensive new hobby was born.

Since that time, the Soboroff Typewriter Collection

has grown to 33 typewriters, all owned by prominent

people from a variety of fields, including entertainment,

literature and science.

Currently, the collection can be seen at the Paley

Center for Media in Beverly Hills. Each typewriter is

surrounded by ephem era, including magazines, letters,

books, photographs and even a Plastic Ono Band 45

(“Give Peace a Chance”).

Soboroff wrote all the text that is featured in the

exhibit on the old Royal typewriter that sits on his

desk, which is two serial numbers off from the Ernest

Hemingway typewriter that Soboroff owns. His

Jerry Siegel created Superman on this Royal Portable Quiet


Photo: Michael Bulbenko

Steve Soboroff’s Royal typewriter, similar to Ernest Hemingway’s, has a place of prominence in his memorabilia-filled office.

typewriter can be found for $250, while he was offered

$250,000 for Hemingway’s. It is one of seven that the

author owned (Soboroff owns another one), and is

the last one he wrote on before killing himself in

1961. Soboroff doesn’t let anyone touch it.

“My populist rule of thumb is if they were on

the cover of Time, Newsweek or Sports Illustrated,

I’m generally interested,” Soboroff said. This

includes a diverse group, from Dr. Maya Angelou to

Theodore Kaczynski, better known as the Unabomber.

His typewriter was taken by the FBI when he was

captured, and eventually sold via a government auction,

where Soboroff picked it up.

When he met fellow Palisadian Tom Hanks, who

is also a typewriter collector and represented in

the collection with a Hermes 3000, Soboroff

told him, “I’d take your typewriter.” It was

delivered the next day, along with two Time

magazine covers featuring the actor.

There is a major difference between the two men’s

collections. “He collects typewriters for the typewriter.

I collect typewriters for who used them,” Soboroff said.

Each typewriter in Soboroff’s collection has its own

tale. Some of the greatest art and historical documents

of the 20th century were created on them.

Scientist Samuel T. Cohen’s typewriter was used

when he worked on the Manhattan Project, the

famed atom-bomb program of the 1940s.

Orson Welles’ typewriter was his constant

companion when he visited Paris. “He would lie on

his back and he’d put the typewriter on his stomach

and type,” Soboroff said.

Jerry Siegel created Superman on his Royal Portable

Quiet DeLuxe typewriter. His daughter, Laura Siegel

Larson, sold it to Soboroff because she wanted to

celebrate what would have been her father’s

100th birthday in 2014.

Other typewriters he has bought from family

members and/or estates include those owned by

John Cheever, Marlene Diet rich, Joe DiMaggio

and Harold Robbins. The heirs are “entrusting me to

celebrate the legacy of who owned the typewriter,”

Soboroff said.

Other featured typewriters include the one that

George Bernard Shaw wrote Pygmalion on, the one that

Andy Rooney had for 60 years and was featured on

a segment on 60 Minutes and the one that John

Len non wrote songs on before Beatlemania.

The Smithsonian contacted Soboroff about

donating one of his two Shirley Temple

typewriters. “If I can donate to the Smithsonian, the

finest museum in the world, it validates my collection.

I gave them one.”

He enthusiastically explains the history of the screen

legend’s typewriter that is on view at the Paley Center.

“That typewriter is 80 years old and prob ably used

for about an hour. That’s like getting a Corvette

from 1953 that somebody sealed hermetically.

Her typewriter is in incredible condition.”

Unlike today’s computers, which offer endless

distractions, typewriters encouraged users to be

extremely focused when they sat down to write.

“Like an athlete, people got in a zone with these

(Continued on Page 23)

September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 23

Palisadian Tom Hanks is represented with his Hermes

3000 and personally typed letter to Steve Soboroff.


(Continued from Page 22)

things, and these machines were their partners in those

zones,” said Soboroff, who relishes the fact that so

many masterpieces were created on typewriters in his


He spends a lot of effort hiring people to prove that

the typewriters’ lineage is correct. “No two typewriters

type exactly alike,” Soboroff said, and he uses forensics

and copies of original manuscripts to confirm that all

his typewriters are authentic. It usually takes around

six months for the entire process.

Always looking to add to his collection, Soboroff would

love to get a typewriter that was owned by a president.

Thanks to the Paley exhibit, the Soboroff Typewriter

Collection has grown, and now includes typewriters

that belonged to Bing Crosby and Rudolph Valentino.

This is the last typewriter Ernest Hemingway used before

his suicide.

“People would come and say, ‘This is the right place for

me to put this typewriter instead of keeping it at home.’”

Soboroff originally envisioned that the exhibit would

be up for about two months— it’s now been nine. Unlike

most museum exhibits, nothing is protected, or placed

behind glass. Everything is close enough to touch, but

there are polite signs throughout the room reminding

people to look only.

The collection was previously shown at Northeastern

University’s new museum in Boston.

Soboroff loans out his typewriters to different

organizations, donating all of that income to the Jim

Murray Memorial Foun dation’s journalism scholarship


Every other year, he helps out the John Updike Society

by lending the organization the author’s typewriter.

And Siegel’s typewriter, on which Superman came to

life, will travel to New York where it will be on view for

five months at the “Superheroes in Gotham” exhibit

Andrea Bocelli has written poems and more on his Standard

Perkins Brailler.

Photo courtesy Steve Soboroff

starting October 9 at the New York Historical Society.

Soboroff has lived in the Palisades with his wife,

Patti, since they married in 1983. Their five children—

Jacob, Miles, Molly, Hannah and Leah—range in age

from 22 to 32. He has been president of the Los Angeles

Police Commission for two years, helped guide the Playa

Vista development, ran for mayor in 2001 and is involved

in many civic and business activities throughout Los

Angeles and beyond.

When asked which typewriter is his favorite, Soboroff

explains: “We have five kids. I tell every kid every time

we’re alone that they’re my favorite. Every one of those

typewriters is my favorite, for a different reason.

“The typewriters tell a story. Provenance and other

things tell a beautiful story. That’s what I wanted to tell

about each one, because they’re really important pieces

of American history.”


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Page 24 Palisades News September 16, 2015

Broadway Bound Opens at Pierson



Neil Simon’s Broadway Bound, which

opened on September 4 at Pierson

Playhouse and runs through October

11, is good, but with a few adjustments

could be a truly memorable evening.

This play, which debuted on Broadway

in late 1986 and ran for almost two years, is

the final chapter of Simon’s “Eugene Trilogy.”

The first two, Brighton Beach Memoirs

and Biloxi Blues, dealt with the adolescent

Eugene Jerome growing up in Brooklyn

and then his stint in the Army during

World War II.

The final play, which was nominated for

a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, is set in 1949.

Eugene and his older brother Stanley still

live at home and are trying to break into

comedy writing. Their grandfather, a socialist,

lives with them and refuses to move

south to Florida with his wife. Even as the

two brothers’ careers take off, their father

and mother’s marriage is crumbling—and

the tension is palpable.

When critic Frank Rich reviewed the play

for the New York Times, he wrote: “Broadway

Bound contains some of its author’s

most accomplished writing to date—passages

that dramatize the timeless, unresolvable

bloodlettings of familial existence as

Brothers Eugene (DL Corrigan) and Stanley (David Tracq) are excited after hearing

their comedy sketch on the radio.

Photo: Joy Daunis

well as the humorous conflicts one expects.

But the seamless merging of laughter, character

and emotion that ignited Biloxi Blues

is only intermittently achieved here. There

are stretches, especially in Act I, when

Broadway Bound isn’t funny or moving but

just reportorial and expository.”

This is drama, and the attempt to force

laughs in a story that needs to be told simply,

is strained. This play doesn’t need

opening and closing doors like a bawdy

English farce. The play doesn’t need actors

mugging. The play doesn’t need the constant

shuffling of a chair just to create

busywork for actors. Occasional silence or

absence of motion can be just as powerful

on stage as constant movement.

Having seen the show on Broadway with

Linda Lavin, who played the mother (and

won the 1987 Tony Award for her performance),

I remember sitting in the audience

trying not to cry as it became apparent she

would soon be alone in the house: a place

where she had devoted her life to her family.

It was a nuanced, magical performance.

As much as Broadway Bound is a semiautobiographical

play about Neil Simon

(Eugene) and his home in Brighton Beach,

Brooklyn, the fulcrum in this show is the

mother. The audience has to feel sorry for

her: it is crucial.

One would urge another examination

from the actress Georgan George (mother)

and director Sherry Coon about that role.

As the mother’s sister, Caroline Westheimer

(Blanche) is lovely. Kenneth Steven

Bernfield (Jack), who plays the dad, is nicely

restrained and the audience feels sorry for

him, even though he is blamed for breaking

up the home. The two brothers, DL Corrigan

(Eugene) and David Tracq (Stanley),

are fine in their excitement of landing a

career in radio/television. As the play progresses,

Tracq seems to find his rhythm—

and the asides, done for comedy and play

progression, start to flow smoothly.

The play is produced by Martha Hunter

and Maria O’Connor. Show times are 8

p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; Sundays at 2

p.m. Adults are $20 and seniors/students

are $18. Free parking. Call (310) 454-1970.

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September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 25


Special Section—

October 21, 2015

Place Your Ads NOW in the

Full-Color Pages, Full-Color Ads

Distribution to the entire 90272 Palisades

Community (by US Mail to 13,300 addresses

& 1,200 distribution around town)

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Ad Space Reservation Deadline: October 9

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Contact for Information:

Jeff Ridgway at (310) 401-7692

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Left to right, Kristi Temple, Kayla Anne Temple, Amy Lynn Bailey, Madelyn Ann Bailey,

Coronet Debutante Ball President Candy Beaver, Catherine Ann Bigelow, Jacqueline

Ann Bigelow, Nile Ruth Pierre and Lily Fae Pierre.

Photo courtesy Candy Beaver

Coronet Ball Board

Names 2015 Debs


Staff Writer

The Coronet Debutante Ball board

announced its newest debutantes at

an August luncheon at the Bel-Air

Country Club.

Amy Lynn Bailey, Catherine Ann Bige -

low, Nile Ruth Pierre and Kayla Anne

Temple will be presented at the 66th Ball,

which will be held at The Beverly Hilton

on November 28.

The four women were invited to debut

based on their community service involvement.

They have all worked as volunteers

in the community for at least six years.

“The girls are all accomplished high

school seniors busy with a full fall schedule,

who find the time to pursue philanthropic

activities to better the community,” said

Candy Beaver, current Coronet Debutante

Ball president. “I am confident they will

continue to inspire through their volunteer

work for the rest of their lives.”

Bailey and Pierre attend Palisades Charter,

while Temple attends New Roads School.

Bigelow lives in Northern California.

The three local women all volunteer at

Timeless Treasure Thrift Shop in Culver

City and St. Anne’s in Santa Monica. In addition,

Temple cooks for and feeds homeless

women at OPCC in Santa Monica.

Bigelow volunteers up north.

Volunteerism is a basic tenet of the

Coronet Debutante organization, and the

women who spend time helping in the

community are known as Ticktockers.

Fifteen hundred and nine women were

presented as Coronet Debutantes between

1949 and 2014.

Bigelow is a second-generation Coronet

Debutante, whose mother, former Palisadian

Jacqueline Ann Bigelow, was presented

in 1976, and served as a Ball president.Her

grandmother, Juanita Kamm, is a 70-year

resident of Pacific Palisades and a former

National Charity League (NCL) president.

Bailey is also a legacy Coronet Debutante.

Her mother, Madelyn Koll Bailey, debuted

in 1975, and is also a past president of the

NCL’s Los Angeles chapter. Amy’s sisters,

Laura Bailey Mossler (2008) and Kristin Ann

Bailey (2012), were also presented, along

with her grandmother and great-aunt.

Page 26 Palisades News September 16, 2015



11628 Santa Monica Blvd. (at Barry St.), West Los Angeles • (310) 207-5160

This amazing restaurant has been a

“find” for 10 years. Located at the

back of the Plaza West (a minimall),

look for the large NOOK sign.

The restaurant has an amazing variety

of top-quality foods and there is an exceptional

list of cocktails, beers of various

styles, as well as a consortium of ales, and

a number of wines along with a variety of

bourbons, rye, scotch, tequila and rum.

The setting is simple with an open

ceiling featuring rafters and aluminum

pipes. There is a middle table for 14

diners, along with a few booths and

banquette seating on one wall. Large

wooden framed mirrors decorate the walls. Tables are of

simple wood but with all of the proper knives, forks and

large white linen napkins found in first-rate establishments.

Not many restaurants start their small menu with a

mac and cheese, followed by shitake and gruyere bread

pudding, or roasted cauliflower with a salsa verde aioli

(each for $9). Ending this list of 10 small offerings is a

Nook dinner salad of mixed greens with a rosemarybeet

vinaigrette, dried cranberries, brandy pecans and

goat cheese.

My friend and I were torn between the crab cake with

macaque choux and Tabasco vinaigrette ($15), or the

roasted cauliflower.The latter proved to be excellent with

its green and garlic-flavored salsa as a perfect accent to

the roasted cauliflower. The shared dinner

salad was also a delight.

We had always enjoyed the Nook

Burger before a film at the Royal Theater

just down the street, but decided we

wanted something different this time.

Spicy Gulf shrimp caught my eye

while my friend was intrigued by the

chicken paillard. The spicy Gulf shrimp

were perfect—tasty and succulent but

not overwhelmingly spicy. The zesty

flavor was a great accent to the Fall’s

Mill stone-ground grits and slices of

andouille sausage ($20).

The chicken paillard composed of

organic chicken breast pounded flat with garlic-smashed

potatoes and sautéed rapini (brocoli raab), all with a

marvelous lemon caper pan sauce, was equally delicious

($19). The portions were generous and we took home


Keep the Nook burger in mind, because it comes

with gruyere cheese, red onion jam and baby arugula

on grilled rustic bread. It is served with fries or mixed

greens and a homemade pickle ($14).

For steak lovers there is steak frites with a hanger

steak, shallot and mustard butter ($22), and for veggie

lovers the squash and chickpea stew ($13) sounds tasty,

as does the sautéed brown-rice bowl ($13). The menu

is updated frequently.

The chocolate and banana bread pudding with brandy

caramel sauce and whipped cream ($7) sounded enticing

for our shared dessert. It was as delightful as it sounded.

A treat on the dessert menu for those who enjoy

after-dinner drinks includes Irish coffee ($9), Cognac

($12), special bourbons, rye and scotch. Also listed are

a quintet of loose teas.

Hours are from 5:30 to 10 p.m. daily except on Friday

and Saturday when they remain open until 10:30 p.m.

The bar’s Happy Hour is from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday

through Friday.

Parking in the Plaza West lot is free. As I said, Nook

is a “find.”



BRE #00646387



Whether you are buying or selling a home,

condominium or income property, I will produce

the results you are looking for and have the

right to expect.

We’ve Moved!



4:30-10 Sun.-Thurs.

4:30-11 Fri.-Sat.

Sunday Brunch 11-3

Early Bird Menu

Special Menu

Complete Dinners

4:30-7 Mon.-Fri.

Trish Bowe CLU, Agent

Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there. ®


170 W. Channel Road, Santa Monica Canyon



September 16, 2015 Palisades News Page 27

Page 28 Palisades News September 16, 2015

Over 1,200 homes sold and $1.5 BILLION in home sales







Offered at $4,195,000 5.5

Offered at $2,425,000 3

Offered at $2,640,000








Offered at $2,598,000


Offered at $1,475,000


Offered at $995,000


You pick the charity, we donate 10% of

net commission in your name

A Team of licensed agents with

more than 90 years

of combined real estate experience



©2015 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker® ® and the Coldwell l Banker Logo, , Coldwell l Banker Previews International® na

® and the

Coldwell l Banker Previews International Logo, , are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate te LLC. Broker does not guarantee the accuracy of square footage, lot size or

other information concerning ning the condition or features of property provided by seller or obtained from public records or other sources, and the buyer is advised to independently verify the

accuracy of that t information n through personal inspection n and with appropriate professionals. If your property is currently listed for sale, this is not intended as a solicitation. tion.

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