Archives for June 12, 2018

San Pedro’s Brouwerij West Third Annual Family-Friendly Father’s Day for LA Beer Week: Bands Feature Young Bands from Kids with Famous “Rock God” Fathers

Popfuji began as a free showcase of independent music highlighted by Brouwerij West’s delicious summer beer, the namesake Popfuji pilsner, handcrafted by brewmaster and owner, Brian Mercer, a native of San Pedro. This year marks the brewery’s third summer highlighting music, beer and handcrafted food from trucks. It has become one of Los Angeles’ signature outdoor events, having featured the legendary Exene and John Doe as solo acts to performances with their band, the fabled X, to indie acts such as Caught a Ghost, Hearty Har, Sadgirl, Bombón, The Gloomies and more.

For this year’s first Popfuji event, the free outdoor family-friendly concert feature four “seriously emerging” bands, most ofwhose members are still just kids. Starting at 3:00 p.m. warming up the audience is brewery favorite DJ Paul E Wog who spins every week at the tasting room. DJ Paul E Wog is known for his soulful spins of the eighties and nineties music and has been a coastal mainstay performing in the South Bay and Long Beach.


3:30: XYZPDQ: Features the evolving talent of four kids ranging from 12 – 14 years of age. Already a fixture throughout the San Pedro and Torrance area playing live rock blues sets for folks of all ages, the quartet have created quite a name for themselves. Matter of fact, the female guitarist, has already had several million YouTube views for a Guns N’ Roses performance.

4:30: ALINEA: Based out of the South Bay, the youthful act with no one over the age of 18, is a blues-oriented classic and alternative rock band. Already, they have performed throughout Southern California at a variety of events and venues including Whiskey-A-Go-Go and Hermosa Beach’s “Surf Fest.”

5:30 PM: OTTO:  Featured in a documentary, the members of OTTO – while not even of drinking age  – have made an impact as prodigies.

6:30 PMClassless Act: Comprised of childhood friends London Hudson (drums), who’s the son of Slash, and Nico Tsangaris (lead guitar), the band’s lineup consists of Derek Day (23, lead vocals), Dane Pieper (20, rhythm guitar), and Franco Gravante (21, bass). The Southern California quintet made their live debut May 6, 2018, when they took the stage at the fourth annual “Ride For Ronnie” concert and motorcycle ride presented by the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund. They have already received raves for their sound from SoCal Music Today, HighWire Daze and

Brouwerij West’s Tasting Room and courtyard are now open seven days a week: Monday – Tuesday, 4:00pm – 9:00 pm, Wednesday – Thursday, 4:00 pm – 10:00 pm; Friday – Saturday, noon – 10:00 pm and Sunday, noon – 9:00 pm, with food trucks in the courtyard providing food options each day. Follow Brouwerij West on social media for updates on beer releases, events and more:, @brouwerijwest on Instagram and Twitter.


About Brouwerij West:

Brouwerij West is a unique craft brewery and venue located in the San Pedro neighborhood of Los Angeles. Brouwerij West was founded in 2010 and opened its San Pedro brewery in February 2016 in a former Port Warehouse originally built by the U.S. Navy during World War II. Brouwerij West’s operation encompasses 26,000 sq. ft. of the Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles facility, including 8,000 sq. ft. devoted to visitor use for its Tasting Room and events, as well as a 17,000-sq. ft. outdoor courtyard / beer garden. Brouwerij West brews its beers using traditional ingredients and methods mixed with creative inspiration to produce its take on classic Belgian-style and farmhouse ales. Brouwerij West’s new facility is covered with solar panels and generates more electricity than it uses, and its mash filter-based brewhouse uses 30% less water than traditional breweries.

About San Pedro and the Los Angeles Waterfront:

The Los Angeles Waterfront district and the LA neighborhood of San Pedro are currently going through a major revitalization effort lead by the Port of Los Angeles and public and private developers.  Part of this plan includes the complex which Brouwerij West is a part of, CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles, whose first phase is a large-scale permanent craft marketplace home to hundreds of individual craft-artists, designers, and artisanal food makers that is currently open Friday-Sunday (learn more at  The classic Ports O’ Call Village will also be transforming in the coming years to become the San Pedro Public Market (more info at, and the development of AltaSea, a 35-acre campus devoted to ocean-based education and businesses ( is underway.  For more information, visit

Make A Splash & Pick Up Some Trash With Morgan Taylor!

Join Morgan Taylor Lacquer and the Surfrider Foundation for a day of giving back and cleaning up at Huntington Beach! On June 16th, which happens to be International Surfing Day, we will be hosting a beach clean-up. Find out what environmental factors are negatively impacting California’s beautiful beaches and RSVP for the cleanup now!

Date: Saturday, June 16th

Time: 8 am to 11 am

Location: Huntington Beach Pier (North Side) – 6th Street & Pacific Coast Highway.

Credit: Morgan Taylor Lacquer and the Surfrider Foundation. 

Benjamin Millepied’s L.A. Dance Project Performs at Musco Center 6.16 Musco Center for the Arts at Chapman University presents L.A. Dance Project on June 16 at 7:30pm

The world-renowned dance company pushes boundaries with its innovative choreography and creative blend of multiple disciplines – blurring the lines between the tight constraints of classical ballet and uninhibited motions of contemporary dance. Since its founding in 2012, L.A. Dance Project has toured and given master classes at renowned venues and festivals internationally, including Edinburgh International Festival, Theatre du Chatelet, New York City Center, and The Music Center’s Walt Disney Concert Hall, and has showcased notable pieces in unorthodox spaces.

Founder and Artistic Director Benjamin Millepied is considered to be one of the 21stcentury’s most notable artists, with mastery in both dance and cinematic arts. He was a soloist and principal dancer for leading ballet company New York City Ballet, and served as Director of Dance at Paris Opera Ballet, which is considered to be one of the top four ballet companies in the world. Millepied is celebrated for his work as a choreographer and dancer in the award-winning film Black Swan. Alongside composer Nicholas Britell, he founded Amoveo, a film production company and Artform, a tech start-up that promotes present-day artists and the arts.

During its Orange County debut, L.A. Dance Project will present a world premiere from Shannon Gillen, commissioned by L.A. Dance Project. Shannon Gillen is one of New York City’s most sought-after choreographers with an established and passionate audience following and who commissions her work at prestigious national and international venues. She is the founder of New York-based dance company VIM VIGOR and was championed by renowned dance critic Deborah Jowitt as ‘vastly gifted’.

The performance will also feature Benjamin Millepied’s works Bach Studies (Part 1) and Orpheus Highway. Inspired by legendary composer Johann Sebastian Bach’s dynamic compositions, Benjamin Millepied incorporates music theory into his choreography to the melodies of Partita for Violin No. 2 in D Minor. The enthralling piece will captivate the audience through the dancers’ polished movements, which interpret musical notes to fluid gestures.

Orpheus Highway debuted in 2017 at Joyce Theater, one of the U.S. dance community’s premier venues. Nine dancers portray the romantic tragedy of Orpheus and Eurydice in front of a somber cinematic backdrop. The dancers onstage alternate simultaneous and asynchronous movements with their onscreen counterparts. The live dance and film experience is performed to Steve Reich’s Triple Quartet, whose interchanging tempos guide the story to its dramatic finale.

 Tickets for June 16 are on sale now for $35-65 and may be purchased through the Musco Center online at or by calling the box office at 844-OC-MUSCO (844-626-8726). All print-at-home tickets include a no-cost parking pass. Musco Center for the Arts is located on the campus of Chapman University at 415 North Glassell, Orange, Calif.


Since it opened on March 19, 2016, Marybelle and Sebastian P. Musco Center for the Arts at Chapman University has been hailed as “an ideal opera house, potentially the best in the West and maybe even something more” by the Los Angeles Times.


Cous-Cous, June 14th Pet of the Week!

Cous-Cous is about 5 years old, with a tabby saddle about the same color as a heavily spiced dish of her namesake! But she’s more sweet than spicy—she’s mellow and approachable, and she believes everyone who meets her is approachable as well. She’d be a wonderful new friend. Meet Cous-Cous at the Companion Animal Village at 7700 East Spring St., (562) 570-PETS. Ask for ID# A607520.

(This rescue encouraged by the usual suspects.)


Credit: Courtesy of the Companion Animal Village. 

Book Gift Ideas for Father’s Day!

Looking for books for Dad this upcoming Father’s Day?

Here are some of my favorites!

Is Dad a Music Lover? He may really enjoy this one! LEO FENDER: The Quiet Giant Heard Around the World.

Leo Fender invented the electric guitar. But what made him even more special is that his guitars were used by giants ― spanning decades of music from Elvis to Eric Clapton to Jimi Hendrix to Keith Richards ― all the greats of rock and roll!  When Rolling Stone Magazine published a list of the world’s top 100 guitarists, 90 of them used one of Leo’s guitars ― and the rest used guitars that basically copied Leo’s invention.

While Fender guitars were recognized around the world, few people knew much about the man behind the legendary guitar. Leo Fender grew up in California, where an interest in electronics led him to open up a radio repair shop in 1938. But he didn’t just work on radios; his reputation earned him the respect of musicians and band leaders who trusted him to repair their equipment. As time went on he founded Fender Electric Instrument Manufacturing Company and later, G&L Musical Instruments.

Now, Leo’s wife Phyllis, along with Randall Bell, Ph.D., give music fans a memory-filled look into the remarkable world of this quiet genius in their latest book, Leo Fender: The Quiet Giant Heard Around the World. Randall Bell also grew up in Leo’s neighborhood and his father was the head of the R&D department at Fender’s company.

While this quirky genius invented the electric guitar that helped produce fist-pumping rock and roll for music icons around the world, in reality this shy, unassuming inventor was nearly deaf and wore a glass eye. Leo was a workaholic and lived very simply. In fact, when he sold his company for $300 million, he was living in a trailer and continued to do so for some time. The book does a great job of showing the private side of this iconic genius, and what made him tick!

Fender’s game-changing contributions to the music world have been widely recognized. He was presented with the Country Music Association Pioneer Award in 1981, and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Rock Walk of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His accomplishments were also acknowledged with a Technical Grammy Award in 2009.

Leo Fender died in 1991. Today, Phyllis Fender volunteers at the Fullerton Museum where she shares with visitors stories about her life with Leo. She also has held numerous positions at her church and serves as the Honorary Chairman of G&L Guitars, based in Fullerton, California.

You can find it at

Does Dad love Nature? This one will be a hit! 

National Parks of the USA
Price: $30
Discover the beauty and diversity of America’s great outdoors in this tour of its most iconic national parks. Explore Florida’s river-laced Everglades, travel down the white water rapids of the Grand Canyon, trek across the deserts of Death Valley and scale the soaring summits of the Rocky Mountains with this book that brings you up close to nature’s greatest adventures. Packed with maps and fascinating facts about the flora and fauna unique to each park, this fully-illustrated coast-to-coast journey documents the nation’s most magnificent and sacred places—and shows why they should be preserved for future generations to enjoy.
Parks include: Acadia, Badlands, Big Bend, Biscayne, Bryce Canyon, Channel Islands, Death Valley, Denali, Everglades, Glacier, Glacier Bay, Grand Canyon, Great Smoky, Mountains, Hawaii volcanoes, Isle Royal, Mesa Verde, Olympic, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, Virgin Islands, Yellowstone and Yosemite.

If Dad likes to hike then check out  Ranger Rick Kids’ Guide to Hiking
Price: $14.95
Retail link:
Description: Ranger Rick Kids’ Guide to Hiking shows you everything you need to know to have the most amazing hiking experiences! The book includes a real working compass that will help you find your way. Hiking is more than just a walk in the woods. Every outing is an adventure, and you never know what a hike will bring. By reading this book, you’ll learn where to go to hike, when to go, what to wear, and what to bring with you. You’ll also learn how to take care of nature and how to stay safe while on the trail. But best of all, this book shows you how you can have the most fun while hiking. For some kids, hiking itself might be adventure enough. But you can also bring along a nature journal or create land art. Bring a special hiking buddy with you—one who knows lots of good jokes, riddles, and games to pass the time. You can hike with your pooch, and believe it or not, you can even hike with llamas! The more you know about hiking, the more fun you can have on your adventures. So read the tips in this book at home before you go, and then head for the great outdoors and use the compass to help you find your way. Happy hiking!

Does Dad like to build things? This book is great for the Dad who likes to complete DIY projects! BLACK+DECKER has home improvement covered with the ultimate indoor/outdoor DIY book set. This handsome two-volume boxed set is a complete indoor/outdoor reference library for do-it-yourselfers in one affordable package. Boasting 1,160 pages of detailed how-to instructions and photos, this go-to information source has the answer to any home improvement question you may have, from fixing home wiring to showing you how to build a treehouse.

One of my favorite choices is The Yacht Rock Book!  Does Dad like the music of the 70’s and 80’s? The Yacht Rock Book is a must-read! I found this one an interesting read! So if Dad loves music from bands such as The Eagles and Fleetwood Mac..then this one would make the perfect gift!

Find out more here.


DUDE by Aaron Reynolds, illus. By Dan Santat (Roaring Brook Press, April 3, 2018, Ages 4-8)

This one is a simple book with only one word..Dude(s) but it is a fun book and I also love the characters and the detailed illustrations! This ingenious picture book tells a complex and hilarious story using only one word: DUDE. And there’s an amazing creative team: Caldecott honor author, Author Reynolds and Caldecott Medal author, Dan Santat.
What could be more fun than a platypus, beaver, and a shark surfing together? Kids will have a fun time figuring out all the different ways to say “dude.”

HOOKED by Tommy Greenwald; illustrated by David McPhail (Roaring Brook Press, January 9, 2018, Ages 2-6)
This is a cute story about Father and Son bonding on a fishing trip. This one would be a wonderful book for Father’s Day! I also like that it encourages children to try new things and learning to enjoy the experience completely. Author Tommy Greenwald’s gentle humor will appeal to parents and kids alike. Veteran illustrator David McPhail brings a classic feel to this book through his art.
I have featured this cute story before but this would make a great gift idea especially for new Fathers!
YOUR BABY’S FIRST WORD WILL BE DADA by Jimmy Fallon (Feiwel & Friends, June 9, 2015, Ages 1-3) #1 New York Times Bestseller! Jimmy Fallon, host of NBC’s The Tonight Show, and one of the most popular entertainers in the world, is also a father. His children’s book is funny and warm and adorable—just like he is. Illustrator Miguel Ordóñez’s art will charm readers of all ages.

I WONDER: CELEBRATING DADDIES DOIN’ WORK by Doyin Richards (Feiwel & Friends, May 3, 2016, Ages 3-5)Doyin Richards is a dad whose mission is to celebrate “how fatherhood is the coolest and most rewarding gig a man will ever have in his lifetime.” This one is perfect for Father’s Day but would also be great year-round! This is an adorable picture book and I highly recommend for children and their Dads! 

Happy Father’s Day!

Self Disclosure: I received free copies of the above books to facilitate this post.

Dads Eat Free at Grasslands Meat Market all Month Long in June

Give Dad the best gift of all this Father’s Day with Grasslands Meat Market’s irresistible selection of deliciously prepared meats. Grasslands will offer Dads a complimentary family platter—brimming with a delicious selection of meats and sides—with the purchase of one family platter. The special ‘Dad’s Eat Free’ offer will be available every date in June. On Father’s Day, treat dad to a free brunch or dinner, with the purchase of one brunch or dinner meal. The brunch menu highlights include Grasslands signature meats, such as smoked prime rib, famous BBQ ribs, pulled pork chimichurri and peel & eat shrimp, as well as brunch staples like bacon, sausage, shirred eggs and French toast.

June 2018

Dad’s Eat Free
Su-Th, 4-10 p.m., F-Sa 4 p.m.-Midnight
Father’s will receive a complimentary family platter on any day in June with purchase of one family-style platter.


Sunday, June 17, 2018

Father’s Day Brunch
10 a.m.-4 p.m. 
Father’s will receive a complimentary brunch on Father’s Day with the purchase of one brunch.


Grasslands Meat Market | BBQ & Churrasco

400 West Disney Way, Suite 199, Anaheim, CA

Free parking available at GardenWalk for the first hour, validation provided for the second hour.



For more information, please call 657-208-1133 or visit 

Credit: Grasslands Meat Market.

A Magical Competition is Brewing to Mark the Official Start of Summer at South Coast Botanic Garden Beginning Friday, June 15 and continuing through Friday, August 31 Guests of all Ages can Search for Hidden Doors and Solve a Collection of Riddles with the Fairies vs. Trolls Treasure Hunt

Are you #TeamFairy or #TeamTroll? It’s time to choose a side because these magical creatures are going head-to-head in an epic battle of wits, courage and imagination — and they need your help!
Beginning Friday, June 15 and continuing through Friday, August 31, Garden visitors are invited to use their wits, courage and imagination in this inspired treasure hunt throughout the 87-acre nature space.
Enchanted map in hand, questers will explore rustic nature trails and manicured formal gardens in a search for hidden doors that will lead to a priceless prize — a Merry Fairy Trollstone! Along the way, visitors will experience 2,500 different species of plants from around the globe and an array of active wildlife.
Fairies vs. Trolls will provide the perfect backdrop to a magical summer of fun! Elfie selfies will surely be snapped amid the blooms and a troll’s pose will be perfect in the Banyan Forest. The activity will stoke imaginations and inspire creative play. Guests may need to tip-toe quietly past a sleepy giant or challenge a fellow fairy to a dance off!
In addition to fun and adventure, parents will appreciate the opportunities for summertime learning – even if the kids are having too much fun to notice. The Fairy Flower Footpath will provide information about flowers, and the Trollish Tree Trail will give educational content about trees. Kids will also test their map reading and navigational skills.
Cosplaying enthusiasts of all ages are invited to dress for the occasion, since wings, troll hats, capes, wands and crowns will only enhance the experience. Though, be warned, costumes both real and imaginary should include sensible footwear to ensure everyone can safely traverse the trails. Those having a fairy-fashion-emergency can stop by the Garden Gift Shop for some charmed style advice.
“South Coast Botanic Garden is truly a magical nature space, and Fairies vs. Trolls helps to build on that. What better way to explore it than to use your imagination as a guide?” said Adrienne Nakashima, CEO. “We have been experimenting with ways to encourage people to really take in the wonders of our woodland habitat. In their search for the imaginary inhabitants, participants will see bunnies hopping through the trails, owls perched in the trees, and a wide array of botanicals ranging from desert plants to showy blossoms.”
For an opportunity to experience Fairies vs. Trolls after-hours, consider attending two Family Movie Night events, which will offer time to complete your hunt, a spot for picnicking, concessions for purchase, and live entertainment before the sun sets. June 29 will feature Dreamwork’s “Trolls” and a lively family dance party and July 13 will showcase Disney’s “Coco” with a mariachi performance. Family Movie Night tickets are $5 for members and $10 for non-members and can be purchased via this link general admission or at The event is free for members. To become a member, click new member registration.

Credit: South Coast Botanic Garden
South Coast Botanic Garden is a stunning public garden planted atop a former open-pit mine and subsequent garbage landfill.

Dino Dan: Trek’s Adventures: The Complete Series – Lots of Excitement, Adventures and Learning

Dino Dan: Trek’s Adventures: The Complete Series is a series for young kids with a lot of excitement, and fun adventures to go on! Kids will love this series if they have a big imagination and of course, have a love of dinosaurs.

On this DVD, there are 50 dino-filled adventures with the dinosaur expert, Trek Henderson. Trek imagines different types of dinosaurs in the real world throughout all of his experiences! While Trek’s brother, Dan is away helping his dad with something, Trek takes over and entertains himself with his dinosaur world. The goal is to finish up some of the experiments that Dan has started. Trek even meets some new dinosaurs and marine reptiles that he hasn’t seen before! Join Trek on his wonderful adventures throughout the world of dinosaurs!

One reason I really like this show is how they incorporate educational lessons into it. It’s not everyday that you see a kids TV show that includes all kinds of educational facts within the story line. This is exactly what this series does. For example, in the episode “Trek Rex,” Trek is having trouble figuring out what dinosaur he wants to dress up as for a party. Throughout the episode, he has various encounters with several dinosaurs to help him make his final decision. Trek and the dinosaurs’ encounters happen in the real world, in front of real people, so he is imagining it. I believe that creates a connection between Trek and kids in the real world, since many have big imaginations.

The overall message in this series is that it’s okay to have an imagination and even share it with others! Trek has no problem sharing his findings out loud for everyone to see and has no shame about doing that. This is what kids should feel. And, sharing their findings throughout their childhood is a cool thing to do.

I rate this show 4 out of 5 stars for its playful storyline, exciting cast, imagination and much more. I would love to see the storyline develop more, but it’s perfect for younger kids. I recommend it for ages 5 through 10. This is available on DVD now, so check it out.

Dino Dan Trek’s Adventure: The Complete Series
By Abraham Finer, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic age 13

This series is great for keeping younglings entertained over the summer. With over 500 minutes in its 50 episodes, this will keep them busy and will keep them interested. I found Trek talking to an imaginary dinosaur somewhat strange but hey, it doesn’t seem to bother his mom.

The storyline is about when Trek’s brother who goes away to dig up fossils and Trek misses him. Then, one day a package arrives in the mail with a message from Dan asking Trek to help him do some dinosaur experiments. In later episodes, he gets better and better at conducting these experiments. One of his tasks is to find out if albertosaurus hunt in packs. For this, he gets a ham sandwich and gets the albertosaurus to chase him.

Trek is played by Trek Buccino who lives in Toronto, Ontario and attended Claude Watson School for the Arts. He has also been in Pacific Rim and PJ Masks. Trek’s mom is played by Allana Harkin who has been nominated for the Primetime Emmy award for Full Frontal which she produced.

What I like about the show is that it is enjoyable to watch while you learn some facts along the way. I recommend it for ages 3 to 8 and give it 3 out of 5 stars. It is available now on Digital and DVD/Blu-ray so, check it out.