Foothills Sentry August 2021

NEWS INSIDE East Orange • Old Towne Orange • Orange Park Acres • Villa Park • Silverado/Modjeska Canyons • North Tustin A Monthly Community Newspaper August 2021 *********ECRWSSEDDM**** Residential Customer Letters To The Editor Page 5 Canyon Beat Page 7 Service Directory Pages 11-13 Prof. Directory Page 13 Classifieds Page 13 Obituaries Page 15 The Best News In Town Since 1969 LOST IN THE OZONING AGAIN Land-use decisions made by locals and state legislators require residents' eternal vigilance. See Commentary, page 4 FOLLOW US at Foothills Sentry URBAN INTERFACE Canyonites juggle the natural world with the intrusions of city living. See Canyon Beat, page 7 ALL POLITICS IS LOCAL Elected state and federal representatives come to our town. See Min, Porter, page 2 HORSE POWER The OPA parade returns to the streets with the requisite garnish of red, white and blue. See 4th of July, page 14 THE EAGLES HAVE LANDED Boy Scouts honored for hard work and high achievements. See pages 9 and 10 See "Notice" continued on page 6 Mary's Kitchen 11th hour notice falls on few ears By Tina Richards The news that the City of Or- ange would not renew its license agreement with Mary’s Kitchen drew scores of the charity’s sup- porters to the council meeting, July 13. Many of them held homemade “Save Mary’s Kitch- en” signs, and many others spoke publicly on behalf of the facil- ity that has served meals to the homeless for decades. Some 25 volunteers, clients, homeless advocates, and two of Kitchen founder Mary McAn- ena’s grandchildren implored the city council to allow Mary’s Kitchen to remain at its Struck Avenue location. They addressed the council during the public comments portion of the meet- ing, the time set aside for resi- dents to speak on topics that don’t appear on the agenda. Because those comments do not relate to a specific agenda item, the coun- cil cannot respond to them. It can only listen. Each speaker was thanked for his comments by Mayor Mark Murphy, but nothing more could be said at that time. Conflicts with county course The city explained its posi- tion in a June 18 letter to Mary’s Kitchen CEO Gloria Suess. The letter applauded the kitchen’s history of service and its excel- lent partnership with the city. It referred to the county’s regional focus on “continuum of care,” in- tended to get people off the streets and into housing, and noted that Mary’s Kitchen was not in synch with that. The kitchen’s mission statement, “Those who do not care to improve their standard of living will be provided food and personal care support” only serves to enable homelessness, the city said. The letter also cited a change in clientele, “making the site an attractive nuisance with an increase in crime and calls for service from the police depart- ment.” Several speakers disputed the city’s characterization of the clientele, noting that it was a “community” where people with nowhere to go felt safe and ac- cepted. Several described Mary’s Kitchen as a lifeline, a corner- stone, an incredible place. Life on the streets “I’m one of the criminals that came out of Chino,” Bert Steensma told the council. “I had nothing. Someone told me about Mary’s Kitchen. You can eat, you can shower, you can have an ad- dress.” His experience there, he said, turned his life around. Orange Paseo saved the day during pandemic, city now ponders saving it By Tina Richards The Orange Paseo, the 100 blocks of north and south Glas- sell, will be shut down to accom- modate the International Street Fair and reopened in late Septem- ber, while its ultimate fate is yet to be determined. The Aug. 25 closure of the Paseo satisfies the city’s contract with the fair organizers to provide a “footprint” around the Plaza over the Labor Day weekend for food booths and entertainment. The street fair, shut down last year by the coronavirus, is a ma- jor fundraiser for local nonprofits who sell food and beer on inter- nationally themed streets in the center of Old Towne Orange. The Paseo was closed to traf- fic in July 2020, and opened for outdoor dining as an emergency measure during the heart of the pandemic. The goal was to keep restaurants open and people em- ployed. It was a runaway suc- cess. City Manager Rick Otto reported that sales tax revenue increased by 3.6 to 4%, based on a two-block business boom that, he said, was on track to gross some $60 million. Aside from voting to close the Paseo to accommodate the street fair, the council weighed the op- tions of closing it completely, leaving it open permanently or reopening it on a seasonal basis. The council discussed those op- tions at length, but chose to defer a final decision. Peace and prosperity Restaurants and retailers that border the Paseo reported in- creased foot traffic, higher sales and happy customers who love the walkable environment. The manager of an antique mall on Glassell told the council, “It is easier for customers when the street is closed. Our business is better. Customers like the food, no buses and no smog. It’s a fun place to work again.” “We have the community back,” resident Bill Masters ob- served. “People are talking to each other. The Paseo is bringing in people from the outside.” Chamber of Commerce Presi- dent Al Ricci noted that, “The best thing that came out of the virus was the Paseo. Instead of declining sales, we had increased sales.” Boom and bust While most speakers at the July 13 council meeting supported a permanent Paseo, not every busi- ness benefited. The owner of an antique furniture store, located just beyond the closure, reported her business suffered beyond what the pandemic wrought. “We used to be on a thoroughfare,” she said. “It’s killing our business. Now we’re in what is essentially an alley, with no cars driving by and no parking. We don’t sell $5 ice cream cones. We have expen- sive items. Our clients are un- able to park or drop in. They just stopped coming.” Old Towne Preservation Asso- ciation President Tony Trabuco applauded the council’s action to put the Paseo in place and provide a “lifeline.” But, he explained, the concept was not in keeping See "Paseo" continued on page 2 Jack Williams of Mabury Ranch is representing the United States in the Tokyo Olympics as a member of the U.S. Archery Team. See story, page 6. The City of Orange received a state grant to create a Specific Plan for the Tustin Street corridor. Concep- tual ideas were presented to the public at a workshop, July 20. One concept is a “soft” transition on Canal Street between residences and the reimagined Village Mall property. See page 8.