Beach Magazine Dec 2015


December 10, 2015

Volume 46, Issue 19

John Featherstone

The Warrior Coach

A perfect right

Photo Post

Steak in Manhattan

Beach Gift Guide

December 10, 2015

Volume 46, Issue 19


310.539.6685 310.884.1870


ECC Camino Warriors carry

coach John Featherstone off the

field following his final game,

after 31 years at El Camino


Photo by Brad Jacobson










310.530.4888 310.534.0220








20 Coach Feather by Randy Angel

Coach John Featherstone gives thanks to the players and coaches

he worked with at El Camino College for over three decades. In

turn, they remember “Coach Feather” with reverence usually

reserved for legends.

26 The Right call by Ryan McDonald

Palos Verdes big wave rider Alex Gray and extreme sports photographer

Bo Bridges travel to Tahiti on the chance that the surf might

be good at a spot that almost killed Gray on two previous trips.

34 A steak in the heart of Mid-Century by Richard Foss

The Arthur J pays tribute to the Mid-Century era of strong cocktails,

thick steaks and golf shoes with steel spikes. The namesake’s well

worn golf shoes are at the front door.

38 Post panorama by Bondo Wyszpolski

Photographer John Post memorializes the beach that was,

in Our South Bay.

48 Next play focus by Randy Angel

Sea Hawk outside hitter Megan Rice credits coach Tommy Chaffins’

drills on mental focus with her team’s advancement to a second

consecutive CIF State Division 1 championship match.









10 Beach calendar

12 AMS mock trial competition

30 Gift guide

32 HBEF Wine Walk


41 Mama Liz Thanksgiving Dinner

42 Hermosa Historical Society’s

“Night at the Biltmore”

46 CSC’s Girls Night Out

51 Service Directory





PUBLISHER Kevin Cody, ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Richard Budman, EDITORS Mark McDermott, Randy Angel, David Mendez, Caroline

Anderson and Ryan McDonald, ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Bondo Wyszpolski, DINING EDITOR Richard Foss, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS

Ray Vidal, Brad Jacobson and Gloria Plascencia, CALENDAR Judy Rae, DISPLAY SALES Adrienne Slaughter, Tamar Gillotti, Amy Berg and


CONSULTANT Bob Staake,, FRONT DESK Judy Rae, INTERNS Sean Carroll

Northwest Corner of

Crenshaw Blvd. & Pacific Coast Hwy. in Torrance

~ For Information, Call 310.534.0411


EASY READER (ISSN 0194-6412) is published weekly by EASY READER, 2200 Pacific Cst. Hwy., #101, P.O. Box 427, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254-0427. Yearly domestic

mail subscription $50.00; foreign, $75.00 payable in advance. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to EASY READER, P.O. Box 427, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. The

entire contents of the EASY READER newspaper is Copyright 2015 by EASY READER, Inc. The Easy Reader/Redondo Beach Hometown News

is a legally adjudicated newspaper and the official newspaper for the city of Hermosa Beach. Easy Reader / Redondo Beach Hometown News is also distributed to homes

and on newsstands in Manhattan Beach, El Segundo, Torrance, and Palos Verdes.


n Mailing Address P.O. Box 427, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 Phone (310) 372-4611 Fax (424) 212-6780

n Website Email

n Classified Advertising see the Classified Ad Section. Phone 310.372.4611 x102. Email

n Fictitious Name Statements (DBA's) can be filed at the office during regular business hours. Phone 310.372.4611 x101.

4 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015





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Artist Renderings






Walk About

North Manhattan Beach

hosts its annual Holiday

Open House and Walk

About. Merchants will be

offering unique gifts,

refreshments, and raffle

prizes. Santa will fly in from

the North Pole, landing at

the “miracle of 34th Street.”

5 - 9 p.m., 32nd to 42nd

streets along Highland Ave.

Let's take a walk

The Sierra Club offers

free 2 hour hikes on the

hilly streets and trails of

Palos Verdes Thursdays at

6:30 p.m. Meet in the

parking lot near Rite Aid

Drugs at Hawthorne Blvd.

and Silver Spur Road. For

questions call Paul

Rosenberger (310) 545 3531



Historical Christmas

The 9th Annual Victorian

Holiday Party and Toy

Drive is hosted by the

Redondo Historical Society

and the Redondo Historical

Commission at the historic

Morrell House and Queen

Anne Museum. Entertainment,

hors d’oeuvres and

merriment. Admittance is

an unwrapped toy valued at

$10 or more. All toys will go

to Cheer for Children kids.

6 - 9 p.m. Heritage Court,

298 Flagler Lane, Redondo

Beach. (310) 465-7149 or


Boat Parade

The 24th Annual King

Harbor Holiday Boat Parade





presented by King Harbor

Yacht Club features Denise

Austin as the Grand

Marshall. Paddleboards

begin the parade at 4:30

p.m., followed by boats at

5:45. The parade makes

multiple trips up and down

the main channel and is visible

from throughout the

harbor. 280 Yacht Club

Way, Redondo Beach. (310)


Yuletide 5K

The Manhattan Beach

Yuletide 5K is run on wet

sand on the beach just after

sunset. and lit by the light

of glow sticks. This fun,

family-oriented race starts

at 5:30 p.m. on the sand

north of the Manhattan


Santa concert on

the Redondo Pier

The 5th Annual Holiday

Concert and Santa on the

Pier is presented by the

Redondo Beach Pier

Association. Free and open

to the public. Selfie photos

with Surfing Santa. Free

holiday activity book for the

first 150 kids. 3 - 5 p.m. 100

Fisherman’s Wharf,

Redondo Beach. Visit for details

about free holiday parking

at the pier.

Add a Little Light

A Hanukkah celebration

presented by Congregation

Ner Tamid includes candles,

song and food and begins at

6 p.m. Del Amo Fashion

Center, 3525 W. Carson St.,

Torrance. 1st floor courtyard

near AMC theaters.

5721 Crestridge Rd, Rancho

Palos Verdes.

(310) 377-6986.

Vistamar open

house & visit

Learning with a diverse

community is necessary for

students to thrive in a globalized

society. The Vistamar

High School curriculum has

been adapted from the best

programs in Europe, Asia,

and the United States. Open

House Registration: 8:30

a.m. Program: 9 a.m. -

noon. 737 Hawaii, El

Segundo. RSVP by calling

10 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

(310) 643-7377 or




MB Fireworks

Downtown Manhattan

Beach holiday fireworks

celebration begins at 4 p.m.

with the Skechers snow

park followed by the

Hyperion Outfall Serenaders

and MCHS Jazz

Ensemble. MBfireworks.


The gift of giving

Make good on your

Christmas spirit at

Manhattan Beach Community

Church's Alternative

Christmas Fair. Learn

about and give to a variety

of local and international

non-profit organizations,

including 1736 Family

Crisis Center, Habitat for

Humanity, St. Paul's Project

Needs, Project Learn

Guatemala, and Church

World Service. 11 a.m. 303

S. Peck, Manhattan Beach,

on the lower patio.Parking

behind the church on

Rowell. Admission is free.

(310) 372-3587 or visit




State of the region

Congresswoman Maxine

Waters and Congressman

Ted Lieu will give presentations

on national issues and

their impacts on the South

Bay. Noon to 1:30 p.m.

DoubleTree by Hilton

Torrance - South Bay, 21333

Hawthorne Blvd. Reservations:

call (310) 540-5858 or



Santa Sleigh Ride



The Hermosa Beach

Neighborhood Watch along

with the Hermosa Beach

police and fire departments

present the 9th annual

Santa Sleigh Ride. Santa will

arrive with helpers at five

stops and will spend 20

minutes at each stop.

Watch stand-up paddleboarders and then many of King Harbor’s most

beautiful boats lit up for the holidays and cruising the main channel,

beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12.

Families will be able to take

pictures of their children

with Santa. 6 - 6:20 p.m.

200 Hillcrest, 6:30 - 6:50

p.m. 1200 19th Street, 7 -

7:20 p.m. 1500 Golden, 7:30

- 7:50 p.m. 1000 9th Street,

8 - 8:20 p.m. Pier Plaza.


Toy Drive wrap up



The 23rd Annual Beach

Cities Toy Drive wrapping

party is today from 10 a.m.

- 2 p.m. Bring an

unwrapped toy and help

wrap hundreds of others.

Hermosa Beach Community

Center, 710 Pier Avenue,

Hermosa Beach.


Free to Be Me

Drum Circle



Every third Sunday of the

month, noon - 3 p.m.

Sabina facilitates a drum

circle just north of the

Hermosa Beach pier, on the

sand. Drums and percussion

instruments are provided

so that no one is left



Bring a gift, then help wrap thousands of others at the 23rd Annual

Beach Cities Toy Drive wrapping party Saturday, Dec. 19, 10 a.m. - 2

p.m. at the Hermosa Beach Community Center, 710 Pier Avenue,

Hermosa Beach.

each academics


Appears before Superior Court


by Werner Foxx

merican Martyrs School in Manhattan Beach was one of 150

schools that participated in the 38th Annual Los Angeles

County Mock Trial Competition last month. The students performed

the roles of attorneys, witnesses and court personnel in the

fictional case of the People v. Hayes. Two team members prosecuted

and two defended mock trial defendant Jamie Hayes, a college student

on a track and field scholarship accused of murdering a campus

security officer.

Each team was judged for their presentation and legal skills by 300

volunteer judges and attorneys.

The annual event takes place in the Los Angeles Superior Court

Stanley Mosk Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles. It is sponsored

by the Constitutional Rights Foundation.

“The kids have positive interactions with adults in the judicial system

while developing their presentation and critical thinking skills,”

said Lourdes Morales of the Constitutional Rights Foundation.

Attorney Pat Barrera of Barrera and Associates in Manhattan

Beach coached the AMS team. The team met on Friday afternoons to

review the case and prepare their testimony, opening statements and

closing arguments.

“They were more poised and polished than some of the attorneys

that appear in court daily,” he said.


2 3

1. The American Martyrs School’s Mock Trial Team gathers for

the start of trial.

2. Prosecutor Julia Keller and witnesses Brooke Charlton, Ryan

Torii, Micah Worner and Avery DeVore.

3. Defense attorneys Donny MacArthur and Sean Dorr go over

notes with witness Ryan Torii.

4. Witnesses Madeline Tello and Yzabella Ramirez prepare their


5. AMS Mock Trial coach Pat Barrera and American Martyrs

Principal Dr. Camryn Friel talk trial strategy.

6. American Martyrs Vice Principal Tim Bersin with Mock Trial

students Julia Keller and Brooke Charlton.

7. Mock Trial Judge Kenneth O’Brien Jr. gives instructions to clerk

Sean Dorr.

8. Mock Trial Judge Kenneth O’Brien Jr. admonishes witness

Micah Worner.

9. Prosecutor Julia Keller with witness Yzabella Ramirez and

Judge Kenneth O’Brien Jr.

10. American Martyrs Mock Trial coaches Pat Barrera and

Richard Lyman with Judge Kenneth O’Brien and the American

Martyrs Mock Trial team.

4 5


12 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015



Michael Burstein is a probate and estate planning

attorney. A graduate of the University of California,

Hastings College of the Law in 1987, he is admitted

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December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 13

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 19

Coach Feather

Players carry John Featherstone off the field after he concludes his 31-year tenure as head coach of El Camino’s football program. Photo by Brad Jacobson

There are no words that can describe what Coach Feather has done for athletics in the South Bay.”

-- Keith Ellison, former Sea Hawk, Warrior and Buffalo Bill player and current Sea Hawk defensive coordinator

by Randy Angel

Coach Feather felt odd standing on the sidelines last month,

watching Redondo battle West Torrance for the CIF-Southern

Section Western Division playoffs. He was not accustomed to

surveying the action on the field simply as a fan and not as a scout

for future El Camino College players.

The former gridiron star and coach had recently announced his

retirement, after 31 years as head coach of El Camino College’s football


“It will take some time getting used to. Old habits are hard to

break,” he said.

John Featherstone coached his final game Saturday, November 14

at Redondo Union High School, where his players came up just short

of their goal to win one last game for their admired coach. (The game

was at Redondo because a new El Camino football stadium is under

construction.) Trailing 38-23 heading into the fourth quarter, El

Camino rallied, only to lose 38-36 to Long Beach City College, the topranked

team in Southern California’s National Division.

“It’s been a great ride, but it was time,” Featherstone said.

Featherstone’s football career began at Mira Costa High School and

continued at El Camino College and then San Diego State.

Coach Feather, as he is affectionately known, finished his coaching

career at El Camino with a record of 214-119-1. His teams made three

national championship game appearances and won the title in 1987.

They also won two state titles and 11 conference championships.

Feather’s teams appeared in 19 bowl games and reached the playoffs

five straight years, from 2004 to 2008. He was inducted into the El

Camino College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005.

“The reason we coach is for our football players. Our goal is to see

they get to the next level academically,” Featherstone said during the

halftime ceremony in his honor at his final game. “We work them

hard academically and when they step on the football field during the

week, they work hard. That’s what life is all about.”

In 2008, Featherstone was voted National Coach of the Year for a

second time. He also received his eighth California State Coach of the

Year honor that year.

“The NCAA used to not recognize junior college ball at its national

convention,” Featherstone said. “The National Coach of the Year

honor was one of the neatest experiences of my life. They had a

parade and the auditorium was filled with over 1,000 people. I was

honored to represent junior college football and El Camino College. I

always accepted any type of award as a coaching staff award. I didn’t

ever want to be singled out as the main man responsible.”

Featherstone coached more than three dozen players into professional

football, including: Keith Ellison (LB, Buffalo Bills),

DeLawrence Grant (DE, Oakland Raiders), Antonio Chatman (WR,

Cincinnati Bengals), Marcel Reece (FB, Oakland Raiders, active), and

Derrick Deese (OL, San Francisco 49ers). Countless former students

20 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

from Live Oak Park.

Featherstone smiles when he thinks back on how the lessons he

learned during countless hours of playing baseball in empty dirt lots,

catching footballs and making tackles on the grassy fields of Live

Oak Park, running and jumping in the soft sands of beach volleyball

courts and surfing formed the foundation for a career that would

make him one of the most successful junior college football coaches

in the country

The skinny, little blond kid who embraced every minute of fun in

his youth is now 65. At 5-foot-8, he continues a strict fitness regimen

that keeps him at his high school playing weight of 145 pounds. The

boyish twinkle in his eyes is also still there and seems to glisten a little

brighter when he speaks of football.

Featherstone was raised in a strong athletic background. His

grandfather and father were both high school football stars. His older

brother Fred was also an exceptional athlete to whom John would

look up to. John would later pass on his knowledge to his younger

brother, Jimbo, who is eight years his junior.

At Mira Costa, Featherstone competed in track and field, baseball,

John Featherstone is surrounded by family and friends during his final appearance last month as head coach of the El Camino Warriors. Photo by Brad Jacobson

were All-American athletes and transferred to universities to continue

their education and play football.

“I have known Coach Featherstone since our elementary school

days when I had to attempt to tackle him on the playgrounds of

Manhattan Beach,” said Bill Beverly, president of the El Camino

Community College District Board of Trustees. “He has touched

thousands of lives and presided over the building of innumerable

young players into better students, athletes and men. John represents

all that is best about El Camino College."

Keith Ellison, a standout player at Redondo Union High School,

has known Featherstone since he was an 8-year-old watching his

older brother Chris play for El Camino before transferring to BYU.

Keith followed in his brother’s footsteps, playing linebacker for

Featherstone prior to two successful seasons at Oregon State

University, which led to an NFL career with the Buffalo Bills.

Keith and Chris have returned to Redondo High as coaches. Keith

is the Sea Hawk’s assistant head coach and defensive coordinator.

“Feather is one of the nicest coaches you’d ever want to meet or

play for,” Keith said. “El Camino is a special place and it has provided

a second chance for many athletes. There are no words that can

describe what Coach Feather has done for athletics in the South


“He has the right touch with players and I’ve never seen him in a

bad mood. His positive attitude rubs off on everyone around him.”

Don Morrow was inducted in the El Camino Athletic Hall of Fame

in 2003 after an exceptional football career as a quarterback for

Aviation High School, El Camino College and CSU Northridge. He is

in his 23rd year as head coach of Mira Costa’s football program and

has produced numerous players for Featherstone.

“Feather is a great alumnus of Mira Costa,” Morrow said. “He has

helped me a great deal over the years, especially with his ideas on

the passing game. He is somewhat of a legend in that regard. Our

kids who have gone to play at ECC have loved playing for him. He

is a true legend in South Bay football and will be greatly missed on

the field.”

Paving the Way

Featherstone grew up on 21st Street in Manhattan Beach, across

volleyball and football. “Sometimes during the baseball season, I

would leave between innings and go over to the track to run in a

relay event or compete in the long jump, then return to the diamond.”

In 1966, high school volleyball was more than a decade away from

becoming a CIF sanctioned sport, so Featherstone and a few friends

founded the Mira Costa Volleyball Club to compete against other

high schools.

“We weren’t very good, but we sure had a lot of fun,” Featherstone


But Featherstone’s true calling was on the gridiron where he

played quarterback, running back and wide receiver. At Mira Costa

in 1967, he earned All-CIF honors as a wide receiver.

“We were in a rebuilding process when I played there,”

Featherstone said. “I’m excited to see the Mira Costa program where

it is today. Donny Morrow has done a tremendous job.”

The Road Back Home

After earning all-conference honors at El Camino, the speedy

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 21

eceiver received a scholarship to play for legendary coach Don

Coryell at San Diego State University.

“When I played at SDSU in 1970, it was the first year that college

football went to single digit numbers on uniforms,” Featherstone said.

“I was the smallest guy on the team and Coach Coryell asked me how

I felt about wearing number 1. I said ‘Hey, I‘m just happy to wear the

uniform.’ The lockers in the stadium were in numerical order, so

mine was the first one in line, next to the coach’s office. Coryell never

dressed in the coach’s office. He wanted to be close to his players, so

he would hang up his red coat and get dressed in my cubicle. He was

very superstitious. Even on road games, he would dress in my locker,

so we formed a tight bond.”

As a junior, Featherstone’s offensive prowess helped propel SDSU

to the 1969 Pasadena Bowl and what would be the highlight of his

playing career.

“I had a dream the night before the game about playing in Pasadena

and having a good game,” Featherstone recalled. “Our star receiver,

Tommy Reynolds was injured and our second-string receiver pulled a

hamstring in warm ups, so I was thrust into the starting role.”

Featherstone scored two touchdowns in the Aztecs’ win in front of

52,000 fans and was selected as the game’s Most Valuable Player.

With an unblemished 11-0 record, SDSU finished 12th in the

National AP Poll.

Featherstone received a bachelor’s degree from SDSU in 1970,

majoring in journalism with a minor in physical education. The following

year, he began his coaching career as the Aztec’s wide receiver

coach. He said Coryell had the largest impact on his career, not just

by giving him his first coaching job, but because of his offensive


Featherstone believes Coryell never received the recognition he

deserved, though he went on to become the head coach of the St.

Louis Cardinals and the San Diego Chargers. He was the first coach

to have 100 victories at the college and professional levels.

Featherstone earned a master’s degree in physical education from

SDSU in 1973. During the next four years, he served as quarterback

and wide receiver coach for Grossmont College, helping the Griffins

win a state championship in 1974.

At Grossmont, Featherstone became hooked on coaching and

thinking of it as a career. He traced his decision chiefly to his involvement

in play calling and the opportunity to coach Player of the Year

Joe Roth. The talented quarterback would become an All-American

at UC Berkeley before cancer took his life in 1977.

“Joe was a tremendous talent,” Featherstone said. “I was the one

who discovered the mole on his temple. I would see it bleeding every

day. I asked him if he had ever had it checked? ‘Oh, it’s nothing, it

scabs over.’ he told me.

In 1975, Featherstone replaced future St. Louis Rams head coach

Mike Martz at San Diego Mesa College, where he worked as offensive

coordinator and mentored future SDSU All-American quarterback

Matt Kofler.

Returning to SDSU as wide receiver coach in 1980, Featherstone

coached under Claude Gilbert and with future NFL coaches Doug

Scovil and Brian Billick. Featherstone has also worked alongside star

coaches Rod Dowhower, Ernie Zampese and Ted Tollner.

In 1982, Featherstone joined the UC Berkeley program under head

coach and former NFL great Joe Kapp. But one year in the Bay Area

was enough for the Southern California native. Featherstone

returned the following year to become offensive coordinator at Santa

Ana College. In 1985, he returned to the South Bay, replacing future

NFL assistant coach Jack Reilly as El Camino’s head coach.

“I was so excited to return to El Camino,” Featherstone said. “We

had two good seasons when I played for the Warriors under Ken

Swearingen, who was another great influence on me. I’ve been very

fortunate to have been associated with good teams, especially good


“When you look at our offense, we have averaged more than 20

22 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

Coach Feather gives a final pep talk at halftime during his final game as

coach of the Warriors, last month against Long Beach City College. Photo

by Brad Jacobson

points per game in my tenure here,” Featherstone said. “(Assistant

coach) Gene Engle played here before playing at Stanford under

Bill Walsh. He and I have played for two of the greatest coaches

in the history of the game.”

Despite the long hours — Featherstone devoted 60-70 hours per

week during the season to football — he loved coaching at the junior

college level.

“Playing junior college football is the last time these guys can

play for fun,” Featherstone explained. “Then it becomes a business.

They’re getting paid to play at the next level. I tell the players

to approach each game as if it’s your last, stay focused and

have fun. Football is not a game for sissies. It’s a violent game and

we’re part of a chosen few who get to play at this level.”

Featherstone’s credo on the field and in the classroom is:

“Dream. Prepare. Endure. Achieve. If the first three pieces of the

puzzle fit, you will achieve.”

Although a high-energy coach, Featherstone did not believe in

using whistles on the practice field, nor did he believe in cussing.

“You don’t have to cuss to make a player successful. If we have to

yell and scream, it’s done during the week, never during the

game. We make the correction, and then give them positive reinforcement.”

With so much time spent together, players become a family

unit, with Featherstone playing the role of father.

“We get a lot of kids who haven’t had a lot of love and discipline.

One of the highlights of coaching was watching these kids grow

up to be men and productive, successful citizens.”

With players being in the program only two years, Featherstone

had to keep his eyes and ears open in the community.

He always bought game programs at high school games and

walked the sidelines, asking players who the best players were on

each team.

“I like players who never look at the clock, never look at the

score,” Featherstone said. “I looked to see if they’re still playing

hard even though they are down, or ahead by 30 points because

those are players who love the game.

“I looked for overachievers. Team guys with discipline and the

attitude to work hard in all phases of their lives. The only promises

we gave our recruits is that if you came to ECC and stayed out

of trouble and become a good role model to your younger brothers

and sisters, worked hard in the weight room and on the practice

field and played hard between the lines on Saturday night, we

would take care of you for the rest of your lives. We wrote letters,

made calls, whatever it took for players to get to the next level.

And I think we’ve been successful in that aspect.”

The Other Family

Featherstone has an equal affection for the students he has

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 23

taught in his health education classes.

“I loved teaching as much as coaching,” Featherstone said. “I’m as

involved with my 250 students each year as I am with my football

players. I send letters home to parents with tips on feeding their kids,

like I do my players.

“I tell the kids how important exercise is, to make it the same discipline

as brushing their teeth. Take a walk, ride a bike, do something

you like and don’t be afraid to try new activities. Make a

lifestyle change, which may include a change in diet. Adult diabetes

is raging and everything is super-sized. Americans eat way too much

man-made foods, laden with sugar, salt and fat.”

Featherstone lives by his 8-8-8 theory: Eight hours of sleep, eight

hours of work or school, and eight hours of play. “There has to be a

20- or 30-minute window in there to exercise. I’ve always looked at

exercise as a reward, not a punishment. In the last 40 years, we’ve

gotten into man-made foods and with natural evolution, kids are getting

bigger. Whether they’re healthier or not, I don’t know. America

still has the highest cancer and heart disease rate. Americans are

hard workers, but don’t take time to relax. If you don’t find time to

exercise, you’re too busy and need to cut something out of your life.”

Sands of time

Despite the many hours Featherstone devoted to football and

teaching he always found time to enjoy his youthful passion for the


Featherstone began playing beach volleyball at 15. He and his

brother Fred played many years on the California Beach Volleyball

Association (CBVA) tour, finishing in the top 10 in five open tournaments.

“I would get out of the water after surfing and see these guys play-

Coach Feather cont. on page 51

John Featherstone was twice named National Coach of the Year. Photo

by Dwight Ueda/El Camino Athletics

24 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

The wave gets Alex Gray’s attention.

The journey began with a weather chart showing a

“purple blob” in the South Pacific, indicating an

intense storm. The swell was headed to Tahiti.

Longtime North Shore lifeguard Dave Wassel called

Alex Gray, asking if he had seen the forecast. The prime

attraction in Tahiti is a left-breaking wave called

Teahupoo, a heaving slab that unloads deep-water swells

on to a very shallow, coral reef.

Teahupoo is one of the most critical waves in the world.

It is also one of the most photographed. Professionals and

underground chargers alike flock to the French Polynesian

break to score waves and sponsor shots.

But Wassel had another place in mind. He suggested

pursuing a nearby wave that breaks right instead of left.

It would be an opportunity to surf epic waves with little

competition. But Gray did not exactly have the best history

with the wave.

“The first time, I surfed it was with Kelly Slater,” Gray

said. “I got a concussion and took a plane ride home with

my head bleeding against the headrest. The second, I

surfed it with Shane Dorian and had one of the worst

wipeouts of my life.”

Nonetheless, Gray trusts Wassel, and decided to go for

it, despite the fact that Wassel had to back out of the trip.

Gray reached out to several photographers. But they

26 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015


Bo Bridges and

big-wave surfer

Alex Gray talk

about landing

the November

Surfer Magazine


story by

Ryan McDonald

photos by

Bo Bridges

were skeptical about passing up Teahupoo to shoot a wave

so fickle it did not even have a proper name. (“The Right”

is already claimed by a slab in Western Australia.)

Coincidentally, Bo Bridges was called off a shoot in

Colorado due to sleet at exactly the same time. He phoned

Gray and the duo set out for Tahiti within hours.

“I just love surfing more than anything,” said Bridges.

“So whenever I get the opportunity to shoot pros, I can’t

turn it down.”

Bridges and Gray set out for the wave early on the first

morning of the swell. The swell charts indicated that the

second day of the three-day swell would be the biggest.

Gray and the crew loaded into a panga and snuck past

Teahupoo, which was already crowded with surfers.

“We ducked our heads down as we were going by

Chopes,” Gray said.

“People think Tahiti, they presume it’s this pristine tropical

paradise,” Bridges said. “But storms come in fast, so

I’m looking for garbage bags, anything I can to protect the


Gray surfed alone and occasionally found himself wishing

for companions — if only to better his chances in case

any wildlife showed up.

“I’m thinking, are there tiger sharks on this side of the

reef?” Gray said.

Too late on a perfect wave.

Patience pays off with

a Surfer Magazine

cover photo.

On the second day, Gray rode a

fuller-volume board for paddling into

large, fast-moving waves. But when the

right one came, he paddled out too far

and found himself out of position.

Unlike Teahupoo, which has a predictable

paddle-in, the right’s takeoff

zone is “the size of three football fields,”

Gray said. Judging where to takeoff is

further complicated by the uniformity

of the shoreline: a mass of jungle-covered


Missing the wave left Gray crestfallen.

“As a surfer, to invite a photographer,

knowing he’s spending money and

time away from his family and miss the

wave we came for...that’s what I was

thinking,” Gray said.

Gray said he couldn’t sleep that

night. On the third morning, the final

day of the swell, Gray decided to take

out a jet ski to better cover the takeoff


The forecast predicted the third day

would be the smallest. The forecast

was wrong. Huge sets were still rolling


Yet the wave, while displaying flashes

of brilliance, suffered from interminable

waits between sets, sometimes

lasting up to 90 minutes.

Waiting was made all the more difficult

by the knowledge that a worldclass

wave was a few minutes away.

“Chopes was going off,” Gray said.

“Do you gamble on a place with 90

minute lulls?”

But each time he and Bridges got

ready to leave, another amazing wave

would appear on the horizon.

“It seemed like every time Alex paddled

over to the boat, a set would roll

through and he would head back out,”

Bridges said.

The crew intended to do a short session

and be back in camp for lunch.

Again, expectations were overturned.

They arrived 6 a.m. and did not return

‘till 4 p.m. Gray had come unprepared

for the long day and fueled his

marathon session with granola bars.

The persistence paid off. Gray

stepped off the jet ski and onto the

cover of Surfer.

But even that perfect wave had its

wrinkles. A boat with Hawaiian pro

surfer Ian Walsh, loaded with photographers,

dropped anchor directly in front

of where Bridges was stationed.

Fortunately, Walsh and his crew grew

impatient with the long lulls and left,

not a moment too soon. The departing

boat’s wake sent ripples up the face of

the wave that made the cover.

The trip convinced Gray that there is

still room for old-fashioned adventure

in the search for a great ride.

“It was perfect, why would you

leave?” Gray said, referring to those

fighting for waves at Teahupoo that day.

“Well, maybe to surf a perfect wave all

by yourself, and get a Surfer Magazine

cover.” B

Bo Bridges and Alex Gray

celebrate getting the

November Surfer Magazine cover.

28 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

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30 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

The gift of fond


This holiday season give a gift

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Vintage and Antique – Jewelry,

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December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 31

each education


for HB Ed Foundation


by Richard Foss

eople used to big charity events in the South Bay might be

forgiven for thinking they had gone to the wrong place

when they approached the site of the Hermosa Beach

Education Foundation Wine Walk on October 10. There was

plenty of parking right by the entrance and no valets in sight.

The Wine Walk has an unusual venue – two blocks of Powers


“That’s what you get for living in a small, supportive community,”

said event organizer Lynn Barr. “I’d estimate that 95 percent

of the people who attend here live in Hermosa. They’re

parents of Hermosa View or Hermosa Valley students. They

bring family and friends, and they’re the ones who get the word


Those amateur promoters are sharing news of a unique,

annual event that draws 350 people for two blocks of tables

laden food, beer and wine from dozens of area restaurants. It

was sold out as usual, when the capacity crowd gathered on the

unseasonably warm evening. Entertainment was provided by

guitarist Joe Cipolla who sang classic pop hits from the 1940s


“I’m a crossing guard at Hermosa Valley School and a noon

aide at Hermosa View school. I’ve loved music all my life, but

didn’t do it as a career. I owned clothing stores. Now, I also

teach guitar to children,” Cipolla said.

Other benefactors include the Uncorked wine store, which

has donated over a 1,000 bottles of wine over the years and has

mobilized wineries to participate.

“We don’t have kids in the schools, but we own two businesses

here,” explained co-owner Cathey Knoll-Bonafede. “The Ed

Foundation is our number one charity. To keep our little 1.3

square mile community strong, we need strong schools.”

“Not everybody on this street has kids in the schools, but

they’re incredibly tolerant and supportive,” said HBEF

President Allie Malone. “We try to do the same. Earlier today,

after the road was already blocked off, someone needed to get

out and we moved everything out of the way so they could move

their car.”

For more information, visit

1 2

3 4

1. Hermosa Beach

Education Foundation president

Allie Malone, wine

walk chair Debra Luckey

and publicist Laurie Baker.

2. Lisa Cassity and twin sister

Lauren Copelan of Hook

& Plow.

3. King Harbor Brewing’s

Tom Dunbabin forces a

brew on winemaker Doug

Burkett of Rebel Coast


4. Jennifer Oliver, Amber

Kyle, Steve Kyle, Hermosa

Beach Mayor Carolyn Petty

and Corinne Timms.

5. Uncorked owners Kathy

Knoll-Bonafede and Jeff

Bonafede with HBEF events

chair Lynn Barr and Wine

Walk chair Debra Luckey.

6. Joe Cipolla entertained

the crowd with his voice

guitar and sax.

7. Standing Room’s

Jonathan Baran, Lowell

Bakke and Skip Bakke.

8. Mediterraneo chef Pedro

Pureco and server Corey


5 6



32 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

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since 1993

2701 PCH

Hermosa Beach


December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 33


The Arthur J owner Mike Simms with a portrait of his

grandfather Arthur J. Simms. Photo by Brad Jacobson

A steak in the Mid-Century spirit

Executive chef David LeFevre brings 1950s era of

steaks and cocktails to downtown Manhattan Beach

by Richard Foss

Eating steaks has been a symbol of affluence

for hundreds of years and not just

on this side of the Atlantic. Beefsteak

clubs were established in London as early as

1705. Wealthy members dined on steaks,

baked potatoes, wine and beer, a menu that

would delight their counterparts today. It was

such a national trait that the guards at the

Tower of London were nicknamed beefeaters

and a French slang word for Englishmen was


Still, the place we associate with big steaks

is the USA and the era is not the 1750s but

the 1950s. It was an era of cool music, strong

cocktails, big steaks, and big dreams. Even

people who weren’t born yet can get nostalgic

for the era of optimism and opulence.

The place to do that today is The Arthur J.

It’s mid-century visually and the kitchen

serves up dishes in that spirit, but made

attractive to a contemporary palate.

The restaurant is an homage by the Simms

brothers to their late grandfather Arthur J.

Simms, who was a restaurateur and whose

portrait hangs by the front podium. The

grandfather is also oddly but touchingly

remembered with a pair of battered golf

shoes by the front door.

Executive chef David LeFevre taps into

nostalgic and historic veins both with what is

served and how it’s presented. Some very

modern items are served in the blue-flowered

Corningware baking dishes that were in

every kitchen when Eisenhower was president.

These and other touches show a genuine

affection for what’s going on here.

The menu is heavy on steaks, naturally, but

there is much more here. I have visited The

Arthur J twice — once with someone who is

a connoisseur of cow, the second time with

someone who hadn’t eaten beef for decades

and both visits were successful. Both times

we were served by a cheerful pro named

Rachel who was an excellent guide to the

subtleties of the menu.

The starters are mostly classics. We tried

an emmental popover, split pea soup,

Hamachi tartare and a grilled Treviso salad.

The popover and soup were on different visits,

but I wish I had ordered them together

because they would complement each other

well. The very light, savory roll with funky

cheese filling would have been great with the

soup, which had a slight peppery tang and

extra flavor from rye croutons and the

chunks of Virginia ham. A note to those who

haven’t had it before: Virginia ham is saltier

and chewier than most other hams, so adjust

your expectations when you bite into one of

those nuggets of meat in the soup. Including

it in this soup adds a rare flavor of Colonial

America in a California beach town. The

only modern element was the garnish of

smoked chicharrones, which added a rich

crunch to the mix.

The flavor of the Hamachi was another

coast and another century; marinated

chopped yellowtail with micro-greens, tomato,

radish slices, cucumber, Thai chili, peaches,

and peanuts. A puffed rice chip with

sesame on the side adds an additional texture,

if one is needed. Those items don’t

sound like they should work together but

they do. There’s a slightly different balance

34 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

The Arthur J brings a Mid-Century

style to downtown Manhattan

Beach. Photo by Brad Jacobson

in every bite.

We wavered between a classic Caesar

and the Treviso salad, but decided on the

latter because we were intrigued by the

combination of bitter lettuce with ricotta

cheese, mission figs and pine nuts with a

sherry vinaigrette. It was interesting but

not entirely successful. Our server had

mentioned that the Treviso had been

marinated and seared, both of which

usually diminish the bitterness of this

heirloom lettuce variety, but it still had a

rather sharp flavor in bites that didn’t

include the cheese. Using the velvety,

aged ricotta rather than the usual parmesan

was an inspired move, but I would

have preferred more of it, and that it be

cut in smaller pieces so it was spread

through the dish more evenly. The idea

of bitter radicchio with figs and cheese

was excellent, but at least that day the balance

was a bit off.

Unusual variations on classic cocktails are

offered, under inexplicable names. A sidecar

is renamed “Gromit’s whip,” a blood and

sand “Ultimate Degradation.” The fact that

they have any variation of blood and sand is

near miraculous — it’s a mix of scotch

whisky, vermouth, cherry liqueur and

orange juice that was invented in the 1920s

and is unjustly obscure. If you have ever

enjoyed good cocktails, you must try them

here. The booze is top shelf and the people

behind the bar are masters of their craft.

Wine is better with dinner, of course, so

we asked the sommelier to suggest something.

He suggested Champagne with the

split pea soup and a white Montrachet with

the salad. The pairings were spot on. I’m

going to want sparkling wine with pea soup

from now on.

The main courses here are served on an a

la carte basis, though you wouldn’t know

that from the menu. The vegetables and

starches that are mentioned on the same line

as the chops and seafood are mere garnishes.

On the visit with the carnivore we ordered a

ribeye and the sea bream, on the second visit

rack of lamb and a pork chop. (I had been

attracted by an artichoke and cheese dish

that someone at an adjacent table was eating

with gusto, but couldn’t resist the pork.)

The meats followed a simple formula: top

quality product minimally seasoned and

expertly cooked. The pork is from a rare

crossbreed of Hungarian and English

breeds, the meat darker, sweeter and more

richly flavored than even most heritage

breeds and the Colorado lamb will make

you forget that bland stuff from the


The sea bream was less exotic, but used an

interesting, modern preparation. It had been

dusted with fennel pollen, which lends a

delightfully sweet, spicy scent. Bream is similar

to bass but is more sustainable. The

moist, rich fish came away from the bone

easily. Scottish salmon and lobster are also

offered and based on this meal I’d like to

explore their other seafood options.

As for the steaks, the item that is the centerpiece

for most meals here, both prime

dry-aged beef and wet-aged Angus beef are

available. Supermarket beef is wet-aged and

not for very long. It has an agreeable, mild

flavor. Dry aging intensifies the flavor and

adds a funky richness that is generally associated

with lamb and game meats. Dry-aged

steaks are also more expensive because they

lose volume in the process. We decided on

the dry-aged ribeye and after dithering over

the 13 sauces and eight toppings to choose

from, decided to have none. We wanted to

experience the meat by itself. It was a

superlative steak, and as we ate it we mused

that The Arthur J is missing a bet. They

should offer small portions of both wet and

dry aged steak so that customers could learn

the difference. Offhand, I think that they’d

sell more of the dry-aged to repeat customers

because they will have a basis for comparison.

The Arthur J is at 903 Manhattan Avenue

in downtown Manhattan Beach. Open daily at 5 p.m.,

close 10:30 p.m.. Sun-Wed., 11 p.m. Thu-Sat. Street

parking, wheelchair access good, full bar. Some vegetarian

items. Reservations suggested at, phone 310-878-9620.

A variety of sides was offered and these

change with the seasons. A terrific fava

bean dish that I enjoyed on the first visit

was gone on the second, replaced by acorn

squash with candied pecans. The mustard

spaetzle was gone too, though I know of no

reason German handmade noodles would

be seasonal. Perhaps they weren’t popular

because nobody knew what they were.

A steakhouse favorite that seems to have

a perennial place on the menu is creamed

spinach. The version here is the classic –

cooked down with real cream and topped

with crisp fried onions.

Desserts were offered, but here the menu

is out of balance. With the exception of

some sherbets, everything was heavy and

rich. Had something light like a fruit tart or

other, similar pastry been offered we would

have ordered it, but on both visits we didn’t

see anything that called to us.

Dinner at The Arthur J is on the high side

by local standards. The less expensive of the

two meals ran just over $250 for two, with

two cocktails and four glasses of wine. That

could have been much less if we had

watched the wine budget. One the sommelier

suggested was almost $25 for a threeounce

pour. It was a splendid pairing, but

there were other good ones at more modest


The Arthur J is a temple to a certain kind

of dining, the mid-century modern décor

in harmony with the ideas on the menu. At

their best both are about simple ideas elegantly

executed. In one case it’s wood polished

and sculpted to show its beauty, in

the other dishes crafted to show off minimally

enhanced, excellent ingredients. One

could only wish that the patriarch of the

family could have lived to see it. B

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 35




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December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 37

Before the last

Carnival Cruise


Who we were and where we lived

by Bondo Wyszpolski

It wasn’t long ago, in 2012, that John Post published a book of his

photographs to commemorate the Manhattan Beach centennial.

The John Post Gallery has been a staple of downtown Manhattan

Beach for many years and it’s a safe guess that very few people of

Post’s caliber have taken note of the city’s physical growth and

changes as closely as he has. The 2012 book, by the way, was nicely


Afterwards, Post says, “People asked me how come I didn’t do

Hermosa. Well… it wasn’t Hermosa’s centennial.”

Which probably got him thinking about the larger picture, in every

sense of the word.

“So in 2013 I decided to do a South Bay book. These books take

anywhere from two to three years, and three months, no matter

what the book is.”

The “three months” part seems puzzling at first, until one realizes

it’s the two to three years that contains all the groundwork. “Until

you make the commitment, it’s all in your head and some notes on

paper. Then it’s crunch time; then you’ve got to come through.”

Postmodern, of course

“The original thought was Our South Bay,” Post says. “But the trick

is always what do you leave in and what do you leave out? Do you

put in every street corner in town? It kept narrowing itself down

until finally it became the coastline, strictly the coastline.”

And so, within 100 pages, Post has given us his best images of five

different cities, beginning with El Segundo to the north and curving

down around the Peninsula to the south. Not surprisingly, the bulk

of the work focuses on Hermosa, Manhattan, and Redondo Beach

and Torrance (which lays claim to a sliver of sand called Rat Beach).

Also not surprisingly, the ocean seems to be present even when it’s

not in the frame.

Post explains his approach, his basic philosophy, when it comes to

hefting a camera and venturing outdoors:

“I rarely shoot a photograph for myself; all my photographs I take

for the viewer. I get to have the experience. As I’ve told people over

the years, if I wasn’t a photographer I probably wouldn’t even have

a camera. It’s too much work. But I take my pictures to capture the

moment for other people to experience who either don’t have the

chance to make have experience, whatever that image may be.

“So, to go back to the book, it’s about sharing. Sharing where we

live with the residents.”

It may seem like an easy enough endeavor, as if any shutterbug

with a couple of weeks on their hands could go out and get enough

shots of the Beach Cities for a book, but we need to remember that

John Post has been making images of the area for 40 years. These

pictures are culled from the best of the best.

“Sunset surfer at the Cove.”

“Hermosa Beach Plaza in the rain.”

“I believe it’s the first book of its

kind,” Post says, at the same time not

failing to mention Robi Hutas, whom

Post feels was the original trailblazer.

Hutas has been documenting the

South Bay in pictures since the


“I consider myself the first one to

document the beach as art,” Post continues,

in contrast with Hutas whose

pictures range from the Redondo

Beach waterfront (before the city

ruined it) to nearly every major volleyball

tournament in Manhattan

and Hermosa Beach. Another difference

is that the vast majority of what

Hutas photographed was in black

and white whereas with Post it’s

pretty much all color, and usually a

vibrant color at that.

For our children’s children’s


Another reason for Our South Bay, Post says, is for the sake of

posterity, and not just so that we will be able to recall the various

buildings and opens spaces that define the look of an area. At the

end of the book are several pages in small print containing the

names of current residents — those who responded to ads and

announcements to submit their own names and sometimes those

of family members. There’s a reason why this was important.

“We always see photographs of our times accompanied by the

names of city officials,” Post says. “Rarely if ever are photographs

of an area (accompanied) by the names of the average citizens who

make up the communities. I wanted this book to contain a record

of those people.”

Kind of like the Titanic, I reply, kidding him. You’ll have the passenger

list; ‘cause we’re all going down with the big ship, right?

Post laughs. “I think it’ll be more like Carnival Cruises, sailing off

into the sunset.”

“Longfellow Avenue, Hermosa Beach.”

The ever-changing landscape

Although it never enters the book, there’s an underlying theme

that those who leaf through Our South Bay may not even notice and

that’s the issue of gentrification or, less politically charged, the simple

fact of change. I’m not so sure that Post was eager to discuss this,

because his pictures — with very little text; only a short introduction

— bypass the subject altogether. And yet what we see is always

accompanied by what we don’t see. The past nips at our heels no less

than the future.

But of course Post has been around long enough to witness firsthand

how the cities around us have grown and grown.

“This might be the first and only book to document the beaches

and the coastline before they go Miami Beach,” he says with a grin.

In particular, he mentions the AES Power Plant in Redondo Beach,

the site of which will one day be quite different and, you can count

on it, anything but open land.

This is yet one more reason why Our South Bay is important as a

visual document of the area. Who hasn’t come upon a suddenly

vacant lot and then wondered what had been there? “These things

just disappear,” Post says, “and you can’t go back.

“They’re always trying to keep the small town atmosphere,” he

adds, “but that train left in the ‘90s, after the first home went for over

$5 million. They want to keep the symbols, but they want everything

that made the symbols gone.” That also includes former residents.

“The people who made the place can’t afford to live here.”

As mentioned, that’s not really what the book is about, although

the topic sits quietly in the

background of every page.

Also, the photos are aesthetically

pleasing and uplifting for

the most part, paradise on

parade, with no drunks stumbling

out of bars or people

scrounging through recycling

bins. That’s a series for someone

else with a different purpose

and sensibility.

What John Post has set out to

do is give us a bit of permanence

between cardboard covers,

the Beach Cities preserved.

“This book,” he says, “is not

a cell phone, not a selfie, not a

moment you can tweet and be

done with it forever. This is

hard copy. This is not something

you keep on your phone

and thumb and thumb and

“Hermosa Beach storm surf, 1988.”

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 39

40 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

thumb and waste time. This is

something to take you away

from the cell phone, to take you

away from digital entrapments.”

Post gestures to the large format

photographs on the walls

around him. “Drama is in the

detail,” he says and he points out

the detail in his work. “Too

many pictures nowadays focus

on the drama and not the detail

and as soon as you look beyond

the drama the picture’s just an

average picture.”

John Post makes photographs

that tell us, and will tell those

who come after us, who we

were and where we lived. His

new book is a vital document of

the Beach Cities as they exist

now, today, before the last

Carnival Cruise sails into the


Our South Bay (100 pp., 114

full-color photographs) is available

online at, by phone

(310) 376-6982, or by email The current

price is $109. The John Post

Gallery is located at 808

Manhattan Ave., Manhattan

Beach. Hours, Wednesday through

Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. B




Thanksgiving Dinner


ver 400 guests enjoyed a sit down dinner

with all the fixin’s at the 33rd Annual

Mama Liz Thanksgiving dinner. The

Hermosa Beach Kiwanis and Rotary clubs donated

their halls in Valley Park and guests were

served by community volunteers. Donna Dawick

organized the volunteers and Misty Dawn gathered

up over 40 cooked turkeys from fellow

Berkshire Hathaway Realtors. Sandpipers donated

over 50 pies and Jonathan Coleman served as

music director.



Photos by Kevin Cody

1. The carving crew Mark and Evan Hamilton

and Jess Aispuro.

2. Jim Jones on banjo, Bob White on trumpet

and Jerry Rothschild on piano.

3. Chef Pascal Allaire.

4. The Harrow family Michael, Cora, Becca,

Talia and Abigail.

5. Dinner director Donna Dawick begins the

dinner with a Thanksgiving prayer.

6. Yvette Ford.

7. Dennis "The Balloonman" Forel.

8. The Bolls family Steve, Camille, Catherine

and George.

9. The kitchen crew Michael Harrow, Julie

Sherman, Michele Coleman,Tracy “The Brit”

Powelcz, and Jessie Kay Kravik.

10. Musical director Jonathan Coleman.

11. Chris Rodriquez and Mike Pinera.

12. The pie crew Tracey Coe and Kathy and

Kirra Troeger.

3 4





9 10 11


December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 41

each society




isions of ballroom dancing at the Biltmore

Hotel in the 1920s were evoked by the

Hermosa Beach Historical Society last

month with a party that began in the museum and

then moved to the upstairs ballroom (converted

earlier in the day with considerable creativity

from a basketball gymnasium).

For more information on the historical society




1. Joan Roney, Rachel Nyback, Dorothy

Courtney, Beverley Baird and Carol Reznichek.

2. Carol Reznichek with the room key from her

last night at the Biltmore Hotel.

3. Hermosa Beach Historical Museum curator

Christopher Uebelhor and his wife Stacey with

councilman Hany Fangary.

4. Lance and Christine Widman.

5. Doug Neilsen.

6. Jackie Tagliaferro, Krista Capo and Kim


7. Barbara Gunning, Janice Brittain, Annie

Seawright-Newton, Brigid Dowd and Dani Hart.

8. Jake and Trish Courtney.

9. Chris Miller and Bob Courtney.

10. Friend and Connie Roderick.

11. Kim MacMullen (right) with fellow You Can

Dance Studio dancers.

12. You Can Dance owner Irina Trebunskaya

and her husband.

13. Susan and Harold Cohen with HBHS

president Norm and Lorna Rosen.

14. Harold and Susan Cohen.

15. Betsy Ryan and Jennifer McNally.

16. Mick Felder with his 1934 Ford Roadster,

which he built from spare parts in 1962.

17. Will Watson and Brigid Dowd.

3 4





42 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

9 10


12 13

14 15

16 17

December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 43

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each charity


Comedy & Magic Club event

Cancer Support Community Redondo

Beach hosted its 13th Annual Girls

Night Out at the Comedy & Magic Club

October 6, 7 and 8 in celebration of Breast

Cancer Awareness Month and “the women

in our lives who have been touched by

breast cancer.” This 3-night affair raised

over $150,000.

Photos by Adrienne Slaughter



1. Waiting in line

before the Comedy &

Magic Club doors

open are Dolores

Jaime, Kathryn

Crookston, CSC’s Meli

Padilla, Khryste

Langlais, Laurie

Glover, Mary Lou

Giebel, Lorine Testa

and Maureen Lewis.

2. CSC’s employees

and volunteers Molly

Reichle, Meli Padilla,

LIsa Jensen, Mindy

Stogsdill and Nicole


3. Active South Bay

residents Lisa

Burkhart, Maureen

Lewis, Lisa Raymond

and Dorothy Yost.

4. CSC’s Co-founder

“Matriarch” Jean

McMillan and Theresa


5. Sponsor Macy’s

Angela Berardo, Nikki

Saffrey and Shereen


6. King Harbor

Association’s Victoria

Corradi and Joann

Turk with guest


Sarah Kirsh and End

Results’ Mudaser

Hakami and Dominic


7. CSC’s CEO Judith

Opahl with Kimberly

Caballero and Danielle


8. Emmy Award

winner and volunteer

David Plakos with

Hermosa Beach’s

Dorothy Yost and 2-

time cancer survivor

Easy Reader’s

Adrienne Slaughter.

9. Bidding on the

silent auction items

are Laura Kauls and

Jill Ashley.

10. CSC Redondo

Beach staff Pam

Martis, Paula Moore,

Amy Martinez, Molly

Reichle, Nancy

Lomibao, CEO Judith

Opdahl, Nida Padilla

and Theresa Plakos

11. CSC board

member Guido

Rietdyk with president

of the board Kyle

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many costumes during

the live auction.

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46 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

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December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 47

each sports




Powerful kills by Megan Rice have impressed spectators on both sides of the gym.

Photo by Ray Vidal

by Randy Angel

Two years ago, Redondo girls volleyball

coach Tommy Chaffins asked his players

whom they thought he was toughest on

and made the most uncomfortable. They all

pointed at sophomore Megan Rice.

Chaffins knew Rice had the athleticism and

competitiveness to become a vital cog in

Redondo’s volleyball program, but she needed

to strengthen her mental game.

“There is a process about learning mental

toughness and as far as I can tell, there isn't

any ‘nice and easy’ way to learn it,” Chaffins

said. “An athlete has to go through struggles

and learn how to respond to failure and most

importantly, how to move on to the next play. I

was tough on her as I have been on every player

I have coached. When I say tough, it isn't

yelling, but holding the athlete accountable if

they aren't moving on to the next play.”

The lesson was well learned. The hardswinging,

6-foot outside hitter has led Redondo

to a second consecutive appearance in the CIF

State Division 1 finals while enjoying an All-

CIF caliber season as the team’s leading scorer.

Chaffins is known for his credo “next play

focus” and he knew when Rice had reached

that level.

“I can pinpoint the moment when I felt she

had it. It was last season at Mira Costa,”

Chaffins recalled. “We were down 0-2, and she

led our comeback win. We wouldn't have won

state last year without Megan having superior

‘next play focus.’ After that night, I didn't have

to make her feel uncomfortable any more,

because she had it and I was so happy for her.”

Rice’s positive attitude and steady play have

been key factors in Redondo’s success. The Sea

Hawks entered the State finals with a 36-4

record, in what has been a pressure-packed


As defending State champions, Redondo has

had a bullseye on its back throughout the season

and with the graduation of stars Yaasmeen

Bedart-Ghani (Texas), Abril Bustamante (USC),

Kristen Hamlin (Cal Poly) and Hayes Honea

(Amherst), the load put on Rice’s shoulders

would have slowed most players down.

Prior to the season, Chaffins named Rice cocaptain

along with fellow senior Norene Iosia,

a four-year varsity starter who is arguably the

best setter in the nation.

“I knew the pressure was coming,” Rice said.

48 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

“Chaffins made my junior year super hard. He has always

challenged me at practice and I think the experience of

playing in so many important matches last year prepared

me for this season.”

Chaffins said most people didn’t expect the Sea Hawks

to reach the State championship after losing four talented

seniors from last year’s squad and Redondo did drop a little

bit this season. The Sea Hawks lost their bid for backto-back

CIF-SS Division 1AA titles, losing to Mater Dei in

the championship match and they finished the regular season

sharing the Bay League crown with rival Mira Costa.

“There is no secret to our team this season. We count on

Megan to do so much for us offensively: serve, receive, and

blocking,” Chaffins said. “She has had one of the best seasons

of any outside hitter since I have been at Redondo.

Before Megan Rice could play up

to her championship level potential

she had to learn ‘next play focus’

She is in the same conversation as any of the Dykstras

(Devon/Lara/Skylar) and Yazzie (Bedart-Ghani). A top

national program can't exist without an outstanding outside

hitter and we’re blessed to have one of the best in the


“Last year, teams couldn't just focus on Megan due to the

other players. This year, every team’s number one focus is

to stop Megan. No one has.”

Rice’s volleyball success developed over a relatively brief

time. She didn’t begin playing volleyball until she was a

seventh grader at Hermosa Valley School, which is late for

Megan Rice’s all-around play has helped Redondo reach the

State Championship for the second consecutive year.

Photo by Ray Vidal


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December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 49

a player in the South Bay.

She played soccer and was a star player

on her basketball team, but would often

attend the club volleyball practices of her

older brother Nathan, who subsequently

played for Redondo.

“Nathan’s coach Dale Smith got me

interested in volleyball by involving me in

his practices,” Rice said. “I was only 5-

foot- 5 in middle school and hadn’t really

thought about playing volleyball. My dad

wanted me to stick with basketball, but I

really liked volleyball because it is a noncontact

sport and truly a team sport. It

takes every player to win.”

“Megan was so good at basketball,” her

father Jeff said. “When you watch your

kid, since the age of five be the player all

the other kids would throw the ball to and

then see her shoot three-pointers as an

eight-year-old, it’s hard to make that transition.

But when she started playing volleyball,

it was obvious she would bring

that same level of athleticism to the new

game and I haven’t looked back at all.”

Rice was placed on the frosh/soph team

to give her playing time although she

could have battled for a spot on the JV


“She needed to play 100 percent of the

time since she hadn't played much volleyball,”

Chaffins said. “I knew, she would be

on varsity the following year because of

her athleticism and competitiveness.”

During her first year at Redondo she

began a friendship with Iosia who,

although also a freshman, was an assistant

coach for her father Moe on the

Frosh/Soph team.

“I still learn from Norene all the time,”

Rice said. “Even though we’re the same

age, I have always looked up to her. I’m so

lucky to have a setter like her. She plays at

a collegiate level and is a giant reason why

we are where we are.”

“Megan has come a long way and has

worked very hard the last few years,” Iosia

said. “She’s been a rock for us and our goto

player this season. She can handle any

type of pressure and always has a positive

attitude on the court. When I get a little

down, I can look at her and know that,

hey, we got this.”

Rice feels her strength is her front row

play and playing intelligently. She credits

Chaffins and assistant coach Tiffany

Rodriguez for finding new ways for her to


“Megan’s always had the ‘home run’

swing, but swinging for the fences isn't

always the right choice,” Chaffins

explained. “I have been so pleased with

her decision making and ability to score in

a variety of ways, not just with the fastball.

There are many of times when the

right play is to snap the ball in, hopefully

to an uncomfortable spot for our opponent

and give our defense a chance to extend

the point.”

Rice said last year’s five-set win over

Mater Dei to win the Southern California

Regional championship and upsetting

Torrey Pines – the top ranked team in the

state – on the road in the second round of

this year’s regional tournament as her

most memorable matches.

“The entire run to State title last year

was something I’ll never forget,” Rice said.

“That experience helped me become a better

player. Playing in front of the giant

crowd and having 32 kills at Torrey Pines

was also a huge match for me.”

She said her favorite moment came

when she killed the last point in

Redondo’s come-from-behind, 5-set victory

over rival Mira Costa to win the 2014

Bay League title.

Rice will take her talents to UC Santa

Barbara next fall but has another goal set

before she embarks on her college career.

“I really want to medal in the Junior

Olympics,” she said, who will play for the

Sunshine 18’s club team. “I’ve played for

Nike West for the last three years and we

made the Open Division at the Junior

Olympics each year. It’s been a great experience

playing against the best club teams

across the country.”

Wanting to stay in California, Rice

talked with coaches at a Loyola

Marymount and San Diego State but chose

UC Santa Barbara because of its beach setting

and its proximity to her Hermosa

Beach home.

“It’s far enough away from home but

close enough so my family can watch me

play,” Rice said. “I should be able to earn

a starting position as a freshman. Many

schools consider me too short at outside

hitter and I love the game so much, I just

want to play. I hope to help the team reach

the NCAA tournament.”

Along with Dale Smith, Rice credits

Tiffany Rodriguez as playing vital roles in

her volleyball career.

“Tiffany was my first coach at Hermosa

Valley,” Rice said. “She came to Redondo

to coach when I was a sophomore, so

we’ve been through a lot together.”

Yet it is the bond between Rice and

Chaffins that has produced yet another

player on the list of Sea Hawk greats.

“He holds the bar so high for me,” Rice

said. “I appreciate him working with me.

Other coaches might focus on players

needing more work but he gives me just as

much attention.”

Chaffins said Rice’s enthusiasm for the

success of her teammates along with her

leadership, traits are what make a champion.

“Megan always gives full effort on

every play, sacrificing her body every

practice,” Chaffins said. “It sets the tone of

a gym culture when your best athletes lay

it out in practice like Megan does.”

Megan Rice makes a block during Redondo’s 2014

Southern California Regional Championship win

against Mater Dei. Photo by Ray Vidal

They joke about it now, but every so often

Chaffins will ask Rice if she remembers how he

used to make her feel uncomfortable – usually in

front of the team when another player has to go

through the same treatment.

Rice says it made her better but admits it wasn’t

any fun.

“Credit should also go to her parents, Jeff and

Lisa, for allowing her to go through that process,”

Chaffins said. “I think many parents today are

quick to try to ‘fix’ their kid’s athletic/school

issues. They allowed Megan to go through the

process of personal growth.Young people have to

learn to advocate for themselves, go through the

learning process and figure out ways to be successful.

I knew Megan's competitiveness would help

her figure out what she needed to do so I would

get off her back." B

50 Easy Reader / Beach magazine • December 10, 2015

Coach Feather cont. from page 24

ing volleyball. It looked like fun, so I gave it a try and fell in love with

the game,” Featherstone recalled. “It turned out to be the best thing

I ever did for all my other sports. It helped my surfing and it helped

my football immensely because when the season rolled around, I

reported to practice in great shape. Because of the great workout of

running in the sand, I’ve never had problems with my lower extremities

or joints.”

During the summer of 1975, when Featherstone was taking advantage

of an off-season lull from his coaching duties in San Diego, he

joined forces with three friends to form the Mission Beach Volleyball

Clinic for adults. It was an immediate success and the program was

packed for five summers.

Just as the athletic days of his youth would prove valuable for

Featherstone later in life, the experience gained from the adult volleyball

clinic would pay dividends down the road.

Featherstone’s future would include four daughters.

“I’m very lucky with all my daughters,” Featherstone said. “They

didn’t get into the drink and drug deal. Plus, they all love football so

we support each other.”

Although athletics didn’t appeal to his oldest daughter Terre, sisters

Ivy, Keegan and Arianna all played volleyball. Keegan is the girls

volleyball head coach at Bishop Montgomery High School.

Even though the girls fall volleyball season coincides with football,

Featherstone attended as many of his daughter’s athletic events as


“I know how important it is for parents to go to back to school

nights and other school functions. Unfortunately, a lot of kids on my

football teams didn’t have that kind of support growing up and that

breaks my heart.”

After Featherstone became a parent, he saw how popular volleyball

was becoming for girls. “We had the facilities right here,” he

said. “So I started coaching and started my own club, the Manhattan

Beach Tidal Waves.”

Last summer, Featherstone celebrated the 21st year of his beach

volleyball clinic, which includes two sessions. “Kids taking Junior

Lifeguards in morning take my class in the afternoon and vice versa.

Parents can drop their kids off for an entire day at the beach. I see

how much fun kids have playing the sport. I’ve been overjoyed

teaching young kids the great sport of beach volleyball. I’ve loved

every second of it.”

If playing recreational and master’s competition in beach volleyball

along with coaching the sport wasn’t enough for Featherstone,

he found time to serve as a referee for many years.

“I refereed a lot in the ‘80s and enjoyed the high caliber of competition,”

Featherstone said. “Professional beach volleyball players are

some of the best athletes in the world and can match up with those

in any other sport.” B

Buying or Selling

Office: 310.546.3441

Cell: 310.643.6363


“Since 1992”

Don Ruane

Serving the South Bay Beach Cities and beyond



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Southern California’s Newest Marina

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Pub Date: January 14, 2016 • Deadline Date: December 31, 2015


December 10, 2015 • Easy Reader / Beach magazine 51

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