Sanchez to Host Housing Summit

Sanchez to Host Housing Summit

Lakewood~Congresswoman Linda Sanchez will be hosting a Housing Summit this Saturday,  August 29th at The Centre at Sycamore Plaza, 5000 Clark Avenue in Lakewood.Linda Sanchez

If you have questions about the current housing market, incentives for home improvements, or projections for the future housing climate, you are invited to attend. This free event is designed to help if you are: thinking of purchasing your first home; interested in tax credits for energy efficiency; having financial difficulties with mortgage.

Representatives from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Federal Housing Administration, non-profit organizations, and major housing associations will be on hand to give presentations and answer questions. Experts will be on site to talk about the state of housing in Los Angeles County and hold workshops that will help you achieve your personal goals.

No reservation is necessary for this free public event. Light refreshments will be served.

For more information contact Congesswoman Sanchez's office at (562) 860-5050.


New Group Forming in La Mirada

New Group Forming in La Mirada

La Mirada~A new Community Action Committee is forming in La Mirada.

The inagural meeting of the still unnamed group will be this Thursday August 27th, 6:30 p.m. at Foster Road Elementary School, 13930 Foster Road in La Mirada. The meeting will be in the school's quad area and attendees are encouraged to bring their own chairs.

One of the initial projects the group hopes to work on is transforming Milan Creek into a walking/biking trail from Valley View Avenue to Marquardt Avenue; providing an additional free, fitness option in La Mirada. Also, the group will be discussing an issue in La Mirada involving placement of a reader sign in front of a church.

For more information call 562-921-5864.


Urquidi Gets Jump on Competition

Urquidi Gets Jump on Competition

Photo Courtesy Andres Delfin

La Mirada~Wasting no time, Norwalk-La Mirada School Board Candidate, Jesse Urquidi, had a campaign kick-off & mixer at the Holiday Inn Thursday night.

Around a hundred people showed up-including some La Mirada Kiwanians-for a night of food, conversation and fun.

Numerous local dignitaries were spotted in the crowd including, Norwalk Mayor Cheri Kelly (whom I had a lenghty conversation with); NLMUSD Board Member Lorraine Neal; former NLMUSD Board member and current President of the La Mirada Symphony, Pat Ruiz; former NLMUSD Board Member and new La Mirada High School teacher, Leonard Shryock; and current Tanla President, Laura Williams.

Urquidi faces five other challengers for four spots in this November's election.

Field Set for Norwalk-La Mirada School Board

Field Set for Norwalk-La Mirada School Board

Norwalk~With the filing deadline having passed, there will be six candidates vying for four spots on the Norwalk-La Mirada School Board of Education this November 3rd.

Incumbent John Johnson, an unexpected winner four years ago, has not filed for re-election.

Of the six candidates, three incumbents have filed: Daryl Adams, Ed Hengler, and Ana Valencia.

The three challengers are Jesse Urquidi (Engineering Project Manager), Chris Pflanzer (Parent/Business Owner), and Margarita Rios (Police Detective/Parent).

Look for the La Mirada Blog to endorse four candidates in October.



Around the area, high school athletes are getting ready for a tremendously grueling two-week period in which their bodies will be put to the test.

It's the start of football season, and every team has the same chance to be a league champion, make the playoffs, and earn a Division Championship!

However, the fact remains that everyone's chances really, are not the same. So let's get right into it, I am going to break down each team in the Suburban League, and give you a prediction for each of their first games of the season. At the end of this column I will predict the expected order of finish.

Mayfair: The perennial favorite, they have been league champions or had a piece of the league title for the last nine years. They are always a tough team to contend with; and this year they are loaded at the running back position with two 1000-yard rushers coming back from last season.

Keith Harvey is the smaller of the two backs but don't let the size fool you he has good quickness; Dominique Small is the bigger of the two backs. Both of these backs fit the traditional Mayfair running back in the mold of past running backs Jimmy Manley and Derek Driscoll. They are quick to hit the hole and in a blink, can cut it back and go to the house.

There are questions in the secondary this year for Mayfair. They lost two of the areas more talented DB's from last year's team to graduation. They will be guided by Evan Hunko, a big QB who was able to win the starting job his freshman year and was poised for a break-out year last year, before an injury curtailed his season.

In pre-league, they play Pac-5 members Los Alamitos, and Lakewood who are led by super talented QB Jesse Scroggins who has orally committed to USC.

Prediction: Look for Mayfair to repeat as league champs, but it's going to be a close race. They will be looking over their shoulder at Norwalk and La Mirada. I look for them to start the year off 1-3 as they play one of the toughest pre-league schedules

Norwalk: Coach Jesse Ceniceros walked into a dream job last season. He returned a 1000-yard rusher and a good group on defense, and a team that had the experience, size, and speed.

This season looks to be a little of an enigma. They no longer have the services of powerful pint sized RB Jose Guzman; he graduated leaving many on the campus wishing he had one more year.

They return two all-league members on the offensive line including #24 Adrian Gonzales. At one of the wingback spots, he saw extensive action last year in the Paramount game when Guzman was suspended. He does not have breakaway speed, but the kid, minus his 150 lb. frame, runs hard.

Norwalk also returns Senior QB Dominique Diaz who took over last season before their deep run into the playoffs.

The person that I am most anxious to see line up in that purple and gold is a former RB from La Mirada, Davion Edwards. This kid is a hoss. We are talking 5'10'' and probably 225lbs. He is going to line up at the FB spot for them and can really balance that double wing attack that they run. Don't be surprised if they ride his enormous shoulders past Mayfair for a league title.

Prediction: I think that of all the other teams in the Suburban League, Norwalk is going to be able to challenge Mayfair. They should start the season 2-2 and end up 4-2 or 5-1 in league. They will make the playoffs.

Derrick Williams Update

Derrick Williams Update

La Mirada~Recently the La Mirada Blog spoke with Derrick Williams, La Mirada basketball star now attending the University of Arizona.

Williams told us that he finished up a little summer school activity, has returned home to La Mirada, and is getting ready for the first day of school, August 24th.

Williams, who originally signed a letter-of-intent to play with USC, decided not to play there when the team began to unravel after the Tim Floyd front-office situation.

Of course, Floyd was seen on the LM campus as early as Williams' junior year in high school, and was directed here by someone in the La Mirada hierarchy.

Bottom line, we don't get to see Williams play just up the freeway this season, something that disappoints him very much.

Of course, being in the PAC-10, he will make visits when UOA comes to play USC and UCLA. Besides, Arizona is not that far away.

Phantom Projects’ 3rd Annual Young Artists Project Unites Seven Performers for a Unique Evening of Original Music, Theatre, Film, and Dance at the La Mirada Theatre, August 8th at 7 P.M.
Arts & Entertainment

Phantom Projects’ 3rd Annual Young Artists Project Unites Seven Performers for a Unique Evening of Original Music, Theatre, Film, and Dance at the La Mirada Theatre, August 8th at 7 P.M.

La Mirada~ Put seven promising young artists in a workshop environment with no creative limits, stir with the guidance of a veteran director, and cook under the pressure of a public performance within weeks and what do you get? You get a theatrical event that blends drama, poetry, comedy, dance, film, and spoke word.

Phantom Projects Educational Theatre Group's Third Young Artist Project is currently providing this kind of crucible for a talented troupe of former strangers who are suddenly experiencing the joy and pressure of creating professional theatre.

They will perform their evening program at 7 p.m. on August 8 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts. For tickets ($6 to $20) or additional information, call 714-994-6310 or visit

The Young Artists Project is the brainchild of Steve Cisneros, Phantom Projects Founder and Artistic Director, who launched the program in 2007 as part of his company's 10th Anniversary.

The group had never met before their first rehearsal, and rehearsed every day for 14 days including one unique rehearsal that began at 12-midnight and ran until 8AM. The participating artists are Marnin Grace Abad (18, Anaheim), Gennesis Lopez (18, Los Angeles), Emily Lappi (16, Las Flores), Caitlin Selitrennikoff (19, Anaheim Hills), Emily Walker (18, Huntington Beach), Jon Wayne (19, La Habra), Kelley Williams (20, Alta Dena).

High School Football Season Just Around the Corner

High School Football Season Just Around the Corner

La Mirada~A touch of Autumn in the evenings indicates football season is almost here.

The 2009 La Mirada Matadores begin play September 4 against rival St. Paul of Santa Fe Springs.

Follow the Mat's progress all season long right here and look for an exclusive team-by-team Suburban League preview here on the La Mirada Blog the week of August 17th. Check for La Mirada game times on our community calendar.

Also, check out the cool 2009 LM Football web-site at The link has also been added to our La Mirada Links page. Go Matadores!

A 3rd of July I Will Never Forget; Dog is Killed as Fireworks Explode

A 3rd of July I Will Never Forget; Dog is Killed as Fireworks Explode


The following is a re-post from a story I wrote in 2009 after witnessing a dog get killed on July 3rd of that year at La Mirada Blvd and Foster Road after the very young dog ran frightened from the fireworks show at Regional Park after the family had brought the dog to the event earlier in the day.

The La Mirada Blog is recommending dogs not to be taken to the annual celebration at Regional Park.

We all know parks and dogs go hand in hand, but this is one exception. The crowd is to large and dogs simply don't like fireworks.

Please do NOT take your dogs to Regional Park for the 3rd of July celebration, there are simply to many things that can wrong.

If you are worried about your dog staying home alone, you simply can't go the event.

Read this story I wrote six years ago, and I hope it makes you and others aware of the increased possibility of mishap.

Story originally written July 26th, 2009

Frustration, Joy, Despair; All in One Day

La Mirada~A friend, we'll call him MP, recently told me, "Tony, you have to write a La Mirada book someday."

Well, add another chapter.

An opinion piece, me? I don't do these any more, but I absolutely feel compelled in this instance.

Finally after over two weeks, I am able to write this story. As I said, over two weeks has passed now, and this year's 3rd of July event is now fading into distant memory for most.

Not so fast.

I worked the Kiwanis of La Mirada booth during the middle of the day; helping the club barbeque and prepare tri-tip sandwiches to be sold to the crowd. It was the most pleasant part of my day. What a line we had around 6 p.m. What a blast!

I had some interesting thoughts and observations throughout the day, but one that kept bothering me was the fact that many people had brought their dogs to this event.

People, I know dogs love parks, but this is simply an event you cannot bring your dogs to. During the day maybe, but still, there were way too many people to have your dog there, even during the day. And I had to wonder how many of those people were going to bring their dogs home for the evening. This worried me.

As a general rule dogs don't like fireworks. This is common knowledge. Sure, there are some exceptions, but for the most part they dislike fireworks and loud noises. In fact special precautions must be taken for your dog during the 4th of July, even at your own home. Guess what? You can't have both. You can't own a dog and go see the fireworks show. Someone needs to monitor the dog at home. It's a simple as that.

This bothered me all day after seeing dog after dog nervously looking around at the overwhelming crowd.

After finishing up at the booth I wandered over to the family's blanket to relax and watch the fireworks show. Fireworks really don't do much for me, but it's that family, quality factor thing.

At 9:07 p.m. the lights went out in the park and the show was about to begun. Just as the first projectile exploded, a little black dog went frantically racing by our blanket; leash still attached. You could barely see him because of his color and because of the darkness of the night.

I heard people laughing and it sickened me. This dog was obviously traumatized and bolted from its owners grasp. How did this happen? Who would be so irresponsible to let this happen? My worst fear was coming true.

Our blanket was located behind one of the softball diamonds, with our backs to the parking lot and Foster Road. The dog ran towards the lot and Foster Road. It was running so fast in the dark, and I immediately gave chase. I ran as fast as I could. I just wanted to get to the dog and let him/her know, it was OK.

McCoy Rigby Conservatory of the Arts Announces “National Youth Summer Stock” for Talented Young Singers and Dancers from So.California and Across the Nation
Arts & Entertainment

McCoy Rigby Conservatory of the Arts Announces “National Youth Summer Stock” for Talented Young Singers and Dancers from So.California and Across the Nation

Yorba Linda~The McCoy Rigby Conservatory of the Arts (MRCA) will launch the nation's only "Summer Stock" for talented young musical theatre performers, selected by audition from Southern California and throughout the United States, to be held in Orange County, California from July 13 through August 15, 2009.