LEFT HANDED GUITARIST MAKES MUSIC RIGHT
LEFT HANDED GUITARIST MAKES MUSIC RIGHT
Business & Product Development
As the chill of winter fades away, the arrival of spring brings with it a burst of color and life. Trees and flowers once bare and lifeless suddenly burst forth with new growth and beautiful blossoms. The beauty of spring is a subtle yet powerful reminder that the world we live in is constantly changing.
Change is often seen as a daunting and sometimes frightening prospect. Recent times and events have shown us just how true this is. However, the blossoms of spring show us that change can also be beautiful and uplifting. Just as the world around us changes, so too do we change and grow as individuals.
This idea is explored in the stories found in this issue. They encourage us to keep our eyes open to the beauty in the world and to make the best of every moment possible. Life is short and unpredictable, and we never know when we may be presented with an opportunity to experience something truly beautiful.
The blossoms of spring are a reminder that life is always in a state of flux. While this can be unsettling, it is also what makes life so exciting and full of possibility. Each new day brings with it the opportunity for growth and change, and the chance to experience the beauty of the world around us.
So as we welcome in the season of spring, let us take a moment to appreciate the subtle yet beautiful reminder it provides. Let us keep our eyes open to the beauty around us, and let us make the most of every moment we are given. Here's wishing you a happy and fun-filled spring!
Britt moved to Hidden Hills in 2008 and quickly became involved in community activities like CERT, the Valentines Musicale, and as a Calabasas Library Commissioner. She practices yoga and meditation daily and loves living adjacent to the Santa Monica mountains where she can be found when she is not walking the bridle trails in the neighborhood.
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Hidden Hills Magazine is published four times a year by 13 Stars Media. It is mailed to residents of the city of Hidden Hills, and surrounding neighborhoods in California as well as targeted distribution at commercial and retail locations in the greater Los Angeles and Ventura County areas.
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Elyse's work as a journalist and editor spans the globe andtopics including gastronomy, wine and spirits, wellness, business profiles, interior design and fashion. She served as a Senior Editor for business/executive lifestyle magazine C-Suite Quarterly (CSQ)magazine, covering food and travel.
ADDITIONAL CONTRIBUTORS: ALLIE LEBOS, ELLE RAMA, AND SAM LENKOV
"The beautiful spring came; and when Nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also."
Harriet Ann Jacobs
2023 28 42 46
20 ELLIOT EASTON
Trainer Dedicates His Life to Helping Dogs and People
ON A CLEAR DAY
Point Dume Nature Preserve New Staircase
46 CARRIE DAWN
Local Artist Finds the Light
ISRAEL: SACRED GROUND REVISTED
Time to Revisit this Eternally Fascinating Destination
Mouth-Watering Experience With Non-Alcoholic Cocktails
SPANKY'S PET PIC
Learn Major and Elizabeth's Story of Mystery and Love
ON THE COVER Elliot Easton
Photographed by Sam Lenkov
16 | HIDD EN HILLS MAGAZINE
byBRITT AARONSON AND SPENCER CARR
Photographed by SAM LENKOV
Historical Photos Provided by ELLIOT EASTON
I’ve never identified to be a guitar hero or any of that kind of stuff. You know, that’s not who I am but I fought real hard for what I believed in with that band. As with any creative process, sometimes it was really a struggle. It’s like a dream. I mean sometimes I feel like I’m watching a movie about someone else’s life. That’s how grateful I am and that’s how fortunate I’ve been and how amazed I am that it all worked out. ’Cause I could easily play in a corner bar every weekend and I’d still be playing, but you know, I am so blessed.”
For over sixty years, Elliot Easton has gone to work with a guitar case instead of a briefcase. His initial love of music came from a childhood home filled with the exquisite crooning of popular jazz classics by his Juillard trained mother in a voice matching Rosemary Clooney’s. Without her encouragement, a three year old Elliot might not have strummed his toy guitar upside down along with Mouseketeer Jimmie Dodd as he sang the well known theme song from the Mickey Mouse Club. Inspired further by television performances from Elvis Presley and the Beatles on Ed Sullivan’s stage, he committed early to his instrument. Perhaps Easton was moved to be more creative since the world is full of things that aren’t standard designs for left handed people.
Growing up on Long Island, New York, Easton believed all “cowboys played guitar” spurring him to blend a unique sound mixing a bit of a hard rock style with rockabilly, jazz, blues, country, surf, punk, folk, and British music. After studying jazz at the Berklee College of Music, Easton joined Cap’n Swing, a local Boston band with Ric Ocasek and Benjamin Orr. That band transitioned into The Cars and by the time he was 23 years old, they were signed to Elektra Records.
Who can forget hearing the moody rhythm of the opening guitar riff for the popular song “Good Times Roll”? Roy Thomas Baker produced Easton’s collaboration alongside Ocasek’s hit songwriting and lead vocals with David Robinson on electronic drums, Greg Hawkes on keyboards, and Benjamin Orr on bass and vocals. The Cars were destined for greatness, and the band’s debut was released to much success in June 1978. Recording their club set in twelve days at Sir George Martin’s Air Studios in London, with only nine additional days needed for mixing, the synthesizer oriented pop album went on to sell more than six million copies.
The Cars proved they were not a one hit album band, and on and off spent over three decades recording seven albums, touring, performing at festivals such as Live Aid and Lollapalooza, winning the 1st (of many) MTV Video of the Year Awards, producing and influencing new bands, before permanently going on hiatus in 2011. In April 2018, the band had their final performance when inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Cars have sold over 23 million albums and had 13 singles that reached the Top 40. Known for singing backing vocals and playing iconic guitar solos that are an integral part of music mythology, Easton has also recorded as a solo artist, and played in bands The New Cars, Creedence Clearwater Revisited, The Tiki Gods, and The Empty Hearts.
Arguably, some of the best rock, blues, surf and metal guitarists have all been left handed and Elliot Easton is at the top of that list. The Hidden Hills Quarterly was able to connect this guitar hero to a 21 year old named Spencer Carr who is the lead guitarist of the up and coming band Violet Saturn. With his sister and lead singer Lauren, Spencer creates an alternative rock sound so seamless that it could only be the product of siblings who have been playing and writing music together for as long as they can remember. The young up and coming artist and the legendary artist met for a insightful discussion about the fundamental principles of music.
Growing up on Long Island, New York, Easton believed all
“cowboys played guitar”
Spencer Carr: My mom raised me listening to all rock music and I grew up a huge fan of The Cars. What is your creative process because the solo’s speak to me but also I love how your riff’s bring up the song in what seems like a simple way.
Elliot Easton: Yeah, that’s their job. Those simple things are called hooks and the whole idea is to hook you in. Usually a hook is something you’re constructive about and you wait for it to come back around in the song. Growing up on AM radio in the 1960s and all those songs are so concise, two and a half, three minute songs. So I grew up with that concept of having to say a lot in a small amount of time. They give me 12, 16 bars and I try not to waste one note. It was surgical; the way I would work on parts is, if you listen to The Cars records, they have those massive background vocals like Bohemian Rhapsody since we had the same producer, Roy Thomas Baker.
In the case of trying to come up with a solo, the first logical thing I do is figure out what’s my door in? How do I get into the solo and take off from the lead vocal in some kind of graceful way? Once I get that door in, I add bit by bit. So when you figure it out on guitar, it’s
like, hey, that’s different. And then you bring in all your influences, the whole stew of all those ingredients that is your own little recipe and the way you combine them. Another thing I cue off of is the melody of the song because there’s nothing more beautiful than just playing and phrasing a beautiful melody in a nice way to make it your own. Whatever you’ve learned up to that moment, you try to call on it.
Carr: I hear a lot of your playing and sound in a lot of new cool bands like the Yeah, Yeah, Yeah’s, and in Brandon Flowers of the Killers. How do you see that evolving?
Easton: I hear our sound but I don’t go over the top and flatter myself to think that they got it all from The Cars, you know what I mean? Anybody can play eighth notes. If you have the technique to express what’s in your brain then it comes out. The guitar is my voice. I didn’t get my mothers voice, but the guitar is my voice to bend and it is almost like a fingerprint; nobody has the same vibrato. People trying to copy their heroes never get it 100% because everybody’s wired differently.
Carr: You could give someone the same guitar, same amp, same everything, everyone’s going to sound completely different.
Easton: Yeah. There’s so much emphasis on what kind of guitar do you play? What kind of pedals? And what kind of amp do you use? I’ve had more than one band tell me, “No matter what guitar you play, you sound the same.” Whatever I play, they recognize me. It’s such a blessing to have a sound and a voice. That’s my voice. The Cars had such an unusual chemistry because we were a combination of elements from such disparate backgrounds so I had to fight for what I believed in that band. We made something different than anybody expected ’cause it was like “one plus one equals four.” Those influences bouncing off each other made something else that was original. There was a combination of unusual elements you wouldn’t necessarily think of putting together that created a sound recognizable within seconds on the radio. That’s all I ever wanted.
senior year in high school and as a matter of fact, I couldn’t get the money together to go to Berklee right out of high school. I went one year to a State University in New York, and then I went to Berklee for two years in an accelerated program. I didn’t go there to become a jazz guitarist. I went there to learn about music and to not have to live at home [laughs]. Boston was a fun town. It was cool and it was definitely a good decision for me. Nothing would have happened if I never went to Boston. Well something might have happened, but not with The Cars.
Carr: What would you choose if you could have only one guitar, amp, and pedals for recording everything and playing live?
Easton: I’ll take a Fender Telecaster (guitar) & Deluxe (amp) because I can get anything I need out of it. I grew up loving telecaster plays because of the chicken pickin’ and the country stuff. My heroes all played that kind of guitar: James Burton and Robbie Robertson. I was a Band fanatic; also listening to Taj Mahal and King Curtis.
Carr: How have your music experiences changed over the years with new technology and older technology?
Carr: How did your life change after your first record?
Easton: My life changed in every way imaginable because the record was selling right out of the box and was a hit. That said, I thought when I was 23 that if I could get a record out, it would fix everything in my life. And then when it didn’t, it was a little bit of an anti-climactic feeling, kind of like, is that all there is? Because you’d still go home alone every night to still be with your thoughts or have good and bad days. I thought once that came out, I would just shoot off in a rocket or something. Nobody knew what would happen.
Carr: So kind of a lot of it was blending experimental, like super new stuff.
Easton: Dude, you can’t even imagine it. Growing up on the East Coast, I always dreamed of the West Coast. I’m a 60s kid thinking about the Beach Boys, Corvette StingRays, cars, girls, Fender guitars, and it all said California to me. I got into it at an early age and it was like a spiritual homeland. I had a great love of West Coast music and even though I was stuck in Long Island, I loved it anyway.
Carr: So did you kind of always want to study music at the Berklee College of Music?
Easton: No, that was something that I decided around junior or
Easton: In a creative sense, bouncing off someone else is enjoyable to me. To me, music is a shared experience and when a new record came out we would get together at someone’s house, turn the lights down, not talk, and listen to the whole record, first side, then the second side, stare at the album cover, read everything on the back, including all the notes about who produced and played. It was a shared experience to talk about. Now everyone is buried under Airpods, in their own world, and you don’t even know what song they’re listening to. I think there is something beautiful when you share it; you get something bigger than the two parts. You get a third thing. The sound of the room with people playing together and all that vibe, you’re not going to get that sitting here.
Aaronson: How has living in the equestrian community of Hidden Hills influenced your outlook on music and life?
Easton: I’ve lived out here since ’93, first in Bell Canyon and for years in Hidden Hills with my wife, Jill. What I love about living out here is the pool of great musicians, and I have so many great friends who are so good at what they do, and over the years, it’s been fun to work with people like Brian Wilson or the Creedence Clearwater Revival. Two weeks ago, we were invited to do the red carpet; my involvement in the Wild Honey Orchestra and concerts at the Grammy Museum are things that could only happen by living here. I told you when I was a suburban kid how I’d looked to LA for music, hot rods, and all that kind of culture. When I got here in ’93, of course, it wasn’t 1965 anymore, but if you squinted, you could see a little left of the old LA. I love LA.
Welcoming a new furry family member is incredibly exciting, but it comes with substantial responsibility. Setting your dog up for success looks different for each and every dog and is crucial to their longevity and happiness. Training your pup not only builds a trusting relationship but serves in keeping your dog safe as they look to you for guidance in uncertain situations. Just over the hill in Thousand Oaks, trainer Matan Shaibi has dedicated his life to helping dogs and people alike and has spent the past several years building an environment conducive to growth for both his employees and the dogs in their care.
Finding stray dogs as a boy in his small farming community in Israel is where Matan first discovered his passion for helping animals in need. After serving in the Israeli army, he worked in security and became a handler of the protective dogs at his agency. He began studying animal communication, animal body language, and working dogs for two years under renowned trainer Amos Shiboli, focusing his efforts on training protection dogs for the army and police force. In 2013 he moved to the United States, fearful his language barrier would leave him unable to continue his work. After working for a short time with a training facility nearby, he found that his shared language with animals was all he needed.
Matan offers a robust training program that he tailors to each individual dog. He explained that “training begins with knowing and understanding the animal’s nature, needs, and essence” so he can best serve the dogs under his care. He does not subscribe to any specific category of training but combines all the techniques he has learned in his lifetime in order to optimize results and maximize his resources. Much of his training practices are rooted in his experience with working dogs where he concentrated on the intense relationships between dogs and handlers.
In this environment, it is crucial for the dogs to have high confidence levels so the handler can have the trust and therefore complete control of the dog. From puppy training to basic obedience to addressing aggressive behavior, Matan teaches dogs of all ages, sizes, and temperaments and is dedicated to ensuring each pup he guides develops healthy habits that foster growth and stability. His facility offers private sessions to teach the most basic and important tools and encourages owners to show off their skills in group sessions that also serve as a form of socialization.
Matan now offers dog grooming and day camp. His groomers and technicians are great professionals that put the well being of the dog first. His training experience comes in handy when working with a variety of challenges, such as fearful or reactive dogs. His day camp is designed to go hand in hand with the training programs where they have small groups of dogs socializing so each dog receives lots of one on one time with the handler to go over the basic commands, in addition to having treadmill and agility course runs. The small pack walks stimulates their body and mind.
Matan’s determination and faith in his practice have even saved the lives of many suffering animals. Known for his generosity and spirit, he said that strangers would abandon dogs in front of his home for him to rescue. While Matan is confident he can overcome any challenge as a trainer, the last piece of the puzzle lies with the owner. Commitment to the long-term structure is the best indication of whether the animal will thrive and pet parents should be prepared to have an open mind, willing to learn and maintain the tools they learn in training. Matan believes the reason he was put on this earth is to create harmony in the homes of other animal lovers so that dogs and their parents can make the most of the amazing connection that comes with having a dog.
“training begins with knowing and understanding the animal’s nature, needs, and essence.”
You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy chocolate, proof of why people are lined up out the door of Tifa Chocolate and Gelato. The newest franchise in the Vineyards at Porter Ranch is conveniently open Sundays through Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. The premier entertainment, shopping, and dining destination is an upscale mixed-use project at the base of a scenic hillside on Rinaldi Street a few blocks north of the 118 Freeway.
Tifa Chocolate and Gelato is a family business owned by Helen Erskine and Tony Ettaro. From the moment one enters their unique dessert café, they are greeted by welcoming servers scooping fresh waffle cones with blends of classic and traditional gelatos with hand crafted recipes created by Candace Orr, one of Tifa’s chefs and founders. The 24 flavors are made in-house and include non dairy sorbettos, vegan, and sugar free favorites such as vanilla, chocolate, pistachio, stracciatella, strawberry balsamic, mint chip, peanut butter, espresso chip, and Helen’s personal favorites: dark chocolate and lemon cookie. The seasonal options rotate four times per year with a variety of experimental components to create yummy concoctions like cookie monster, strawberry rose, honey lavender, almond orange, black sesame, cherry chip, lemon rosemary, and ricotta, fig and almond.
The shelves are lined with tasty bags of candies, along with artisanal chocolate bars like Cluizel, Askinosie, Ritual, and Pralus. Truffles, bonbons, caramels, and nut clusters are handmade using only the highest quality ingredients and shipped from chocolatiers in Vermont and Paris. The aroma of hot brewed Groundwork espressos, lattes, pour over coffees, and cold drinks accompany fresh delivered pastries and Duverger macarons. Did you know the delicate sandwich cookies are gluten free and taste like rose, raspberry, birthday cake, green tea, salted caramel, chocolate, and cookies and cream?
Helen, Tony, and their five children, Slade, Briseis, Jill, and twins Cristina and Magnus, invite everyone to Tifa Chocolate and Gelato to test any combination of flavors to choose the perfect scoop or two to share with your preferred dessert lover. Even if you are not a gelato fan, there are many mouth watering reasons to pay a visit, and being yummy to the last bite is the justification needed to return.
“Life is uncertain, eat dessert first!”
Enhancing Your Landscape in Calabasas, Hidden Hills, Westlake Village, and Malibu
Calabasas, located in the heart of Los Angeles County, is a beautiful area known for its luxurious homes and scenic hillside views. However, the unique topography presents a number of challenges for homeowners, particularly when it comes to retaining walls, sloped terrains, and pool construction on non-leveled residences. This is where Vitoli Builders, a qualified local contractor specializing in hillside construction, comes in.
One of the most pressing concerns for homeowners in Calabasas is erosion control. After heavy rains, many properties experience issues with soil erosion, which can cause damage to homes, gardens, and outdoor living spaces. Vitoli Builders understands the unique challenges of hillside construction and has the expertise to tackle erosion control issues head-on. Their team includes an in-house engineer, project management, and labor team, each qualified and experienced in working with sloped terrain.
One of the key areas where Vitoli Builders excels is in the construction of retaining walls. Retaining walls are critical for maintaining the stability of a hillside property, and Vitoli Builders has the skills and experience to design and construct retaining walls that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. They use only the highest-quality materials, and their team of experts is dedicated to ensuring that every retaining wall they build is strong, durable, and built to last.
Vitoli Builders also shines in pool construction on non-leveled residences. Building a pool on a sloped terrain is no easy feat, but Vitoli Builders has the expertise to design and construct pools that look great and are safe and functional. Their team of experts understands the unique challenges of working with sloped terrain and has the skills and experience to overcome them.
In addition to their expertise in hillside construction, Vitoli Builders is also a qualified local contractor. They understand the unique needs and concerns of homeowners in Calabasas and are dedicated to providing the highest level of service and support to their clients. Whether you need help with erosion control, retaining walls, or pool construction, Vitoli Builders is the team to call.
In conclusion, if you are a homeowner in Calabasas and facing challenges with hillside construction, Vitoli Builders is the team to turn to. With their in-house engineer, project management, and labor team, they have the expertise and experience to tackle even the most complex projects. So, whether you are dealing with erosion control issues, need a retaining wall constructed, or want to build a pool on a sloped terrain, Vitoli Builders is the contractor you can trust.Oz Tzalalihin Cornell Graduate and Project Manager Vitoli Builders
Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned real estate investor, Inspo Realty & Mortgage Company specializes in residential luxury properties and financing. This women-owned and operated company uses a personalized approach to represent clients with the utmost care, quality, and efficiency. Upon recognizing each other's strengths and professional skills, Maryam Kazemi, Nicole Vaziri, Elika Fierro, and Nicole Dozier decided to join forces and serve the local community. This talented team of realtors and a mortgage broker collaborate to bring their expertise to each step of the buying and selling process, ensuring that Inspo Realty is a full-service solution for all of your LA real estate needs.
Another key characteristic that sets Inspo Realty apart from others is its relationship-driven approach, allowing clients to feel a sense of trust and comfort through each step of their real estate journey. Within their very first year as a team they were recognized and awarded as top producers at KW Calabasas. No matter how tough a challenge, the team at Inspo Realty is strategic and skillful at creating solutions. Most importantly, each member of the team is highly skilled at negotiating the best terms for their clients.
Maryam Kazemi has been in the industry since 2004. After being introduced to real estate through her successful broker and investor mother, Kazemi followed in her footsteps and found her ideal career. Having lived in the valley for more than 20 years, she has an immense amount of knowledge of the Encino, Tarzana, Calabasas, Studio City, and West Hills areas of LA County. Kazemi can provide valuable insight into the schools, social circuits, and other important information for prospective clients looking to move or make the valley their home.
Nicole Vaziri is an LA native who knows the ins and outs of the city's most diverse neighborhoods. As a licensed Realtor and Mortgage Broker, clients of Inspo Realty gain expert knowledge and access to a multitude of loan programs through her vast network of lenders. Knowing which loan to put you in, giving you options to choose from, and ultimately closing on the one perfectly fit for you is what she does best. She is excited to bring her passion, creativity and her professional knowledge to each client experience.
Elika Fierro grew up in a family of developers, making her no stranger to the world of real estate. She lived in Calabasas for 20 years and Hidden Hills for eight, allowing her to know the ins and outs of the local scene and lifestyle. Fierro has her Master's Degree in Psychology due to her love of connection and working with others. However, this skill set truly shines when it comes to understanding the psychology of luxury marketing.
Nicole Dozier grew up in Northern California and has been involved with the mortgage and finance side of real estate for 20 years. Her ability to analyze market trends in the industry and get clients an optimal rate of return is virtually unmatched. Thanks to her degree in Public Relations, Dozier is also great at creating experiential events that showcase gorgeous estates based on each client's needs. Building relationships and connecting with various clientele is her ultimate passion as she helps each buyer or seller on their journey.
Since opening Courtyard Pharmacy in 2017, Greta Goldshtein, an Advanced Practice Pharmacist, has perfected the art of personalized care and hands-on help. Rather than simply dispensing medication, Courtyard Pharmacy takes a clinical approach to work with patients and their doctors to be more proactive in obtaining optimal health. “My education and training have shown that the knowledge and point of view of a pharmacist is unique, powerful, and can positively impact a patient’s health and contribute to their overall care,” explained Goldshtein. “This care model is extensively used in large educational centers such as teaching hospitals and clinics, but is not generally available to patients in the community. The focus of my pharmacy career has been to figure out how to bring this to the community, and through Courtyard Pharmacy, I have been able to deliver that to Calabasas.” Clients are able to get the most out of their experience thanks to this patient-focused, personalized approach.
From on-site testing with same-day results to vaccinations, Courtyard Pharmacy is a one-stop shop for people looking to stay on top of their healthcare and well-being. In addition to standard pharmaceutical services, Courtyard Pharmacy specializes in Comprehensive Medication Management. After receiving authorization to reach out to a patient's doctors and review various lab results and progress notes, the experts at Courtyard Pharmacy curate a personalized care plan that can be utilized by the patient and their doctors. “Most of our clients in this area have incredible physicians, but our lens as pharmacists comes from a different perspective. We might see something the doctor doesn’t, or the patient might tell us something that they haven’t told the doctor, ensuring that we are able to add another layer to the overall healthcare experience and treatment for the patient,” said Goldshtein. While comprehensive medication management is in no way meant to replace your primary physician or doctor, it can help tremendously when used in tandem. Courtyard Pharmacy is also able to assist with any and all travel health services, including travel-related health risk evaluations, vaccinations, and treatments.
This level of consideration and attention sets Courtyard Pharmacy apart from big-name pharmacies like CVS and Rite Aid, as well as other independent pharmacies. Goldshtein started off in Beverly Hills and then relocated to Calabasas when she moved to the area. She felt that Calabasas was a perfect community for the more personalized and in-depth approach. During the Covid-19 pandemic, this idea was proven true as Courtyard Pharmacy became an important resource to locals for everything from testing to vaccinations. That said, it is no surprise that Courtyard has developed such a wonderful reputation, as evidenced by social media. Rebecca G. on Yelp wrote,” If you are reading this, just pick up the phone and call Courtyard or stop by. You'll never go to any other pharmacy, seriously! Everyone is amazing. Greta and her team are thoughtful, patient, knowledgeable, compassionate and their customer service is outstanding.” The thoughtful staff, proactive approach, and nimble nature of Courtyard Pharmacy allow this caring business to meet the needs of the community as they arise.
“As a resident of Hidden Hills for more
40 years, I
a unique understanding of how our community, and
in it, has evolved into something almost beyond imagination. There is an intangible here within our gates that ads value
ongoing story. I love telling that story, and helping
what it means being able
The long-awaited renovated staircase at Point Dume Nature Preserve has reopened a panoramic outlook encompassing the entire Santa Monica Bay, north Malibu Coast, inland Santa Monica Mountains, and distant Catalina Island. The more than one hundred steps that flow down the side of a cliff onto the rugged beach and rocky coves are an engineering feat as the project is supported on massive caissons interspersed with a series of landings with some of the most expansive and expensive views of Malibu.
Construction began in 2020 to replace the older stairway built in the 1990s that became unsafe after years of punishing environmental conditions and high levels of use. This is an unstable and environmentally sensitive area, making this $3.3 million project a challenge to build. There are several options to reach the stairs, with the easiest at the newly named Poppy Trail at the intersection of Cliffside Drive and Birdview Avenue in Malibu. An accessible 0.06-mile boardwalk extends along the coastal scrub landscape to a platform designed to hang over the edge of the bluff.
Point Dume is a perfect place to watch for California gray whales during the December to mid-April migration period. Low tide is definitely the time to visit the pristine tide pools. Keep an eye out for the creatures that make this area so special, including peregrine falcons, ospreys, pelicans, Western snowy plovers, sea lions, and the much-loved bottlenose dolphins.
Take care at this scenic and potentially dangerous stretch of coast
because at high tide, there is no place to go except back up the stairs. Trekking the steep stairs to the secluded location isn’t recommended for people who suffer from fear of heights, hip or knee problems, or other mobility disabilities. It’s perfect for walkers and experienced surfers, but with many submerged rocks and no lifeguard, the better and safer options for swimming, surfing, and scuba diving can be found at the adjacent Westward and Zuma Beaches.
Hikers find a fork at the 0.12-mile Coreopsis Loop Trail with a side route going up to the highest point to offer 360-degree vistas of the ocean and mountains. There is a historical marker with an inscription dedicating this landmark to the Spanish friar Father Francisco Dumetz. Unfortunately, his name was misspelled in perpetuity by the explorer George Vancouver when he designated this promontory “Point Dume.”
Part of the park remains closed for restoration and revegetation, yet there is an offshoot along Birdview Avenue that leads down to the parking lot at Westward Beach. This dramatic portion runs about a mile and is under construction due to its extremely rocky and unstable topography. Sturdy shoes are recommended as well as staying a safe distance from the cliffs edge of the incredibly fragile ecosystem.
Street parking on Cliffside Drive near the Point Dume Natural Preserve is extremely limited. There is ample free parking on Westward Beach Road and pay parking, including ADA parking, is available at the main Westward Beach parking lot.
She may be known as Carrie Dawn in the art and literary worlds but to her students at Round Meadow Elementary School, she is called Miss Carrie. Born in the Bronx in 1961, her family moved to Southern California when she was sixteen years old. She enrolled as a junior at Granada Hills High School following their cross country move, and later received a Bachelor of Arts degree from California State University at Northridge.
Throughout her life, Carrie has been creatively moved by experiences that materialized in good times and bad. A few years ago, she had an epiphany during a challenging transition while living with and taking care of her aging parents. Noticing how artfully natural sunlight streamed through the bathroom blinds to create different geometric shapes and patterns, she began to place reflective objects from around the house at the bottom of the bathtub. She found “the light” photographing different compositions made by the glow streaming through the window onto items like rose petals, crystals, glasses, and prisms. Her palette was established, the camera became her brush, and the textured bottom of the tub became a unique canvas for the light paintings to organically develop like the ups and downs of her own life.
Her last series of compositions appear to be gem-like images. They are not photo manipulated, instead the colorful photographs are the result of light shooting through crystal. Featured in many newspapers and magazines such as the Ventura County Star, Santa Barbara News Press, and the Canyon Country Magazine, Carrie was awarded second place at the COAL Gallery in Carlsbad, Honorable Mention for her photography in the Santa Clarita Artist Association Art Classic, and she won the City’s Choice Award for her piece called “A Reflection Of Me” in the Santa Clarita Rose Show. Currently inspired to revisit her Apple series, she is excited that her piece “Surf’s Up” is now hanging at the Thousand Oaks Community Gallery.
Besides photography, Carrie writes poetry and is the author of two books with events that keep her busy. Her first book “When Lily Speaks” contains inspirational poetry with colorful drawings that guide the reader to a sense of greater fulfillment in many philosophical areas regarding life, love and the pursuit of happiness. Her second book “Tales From Wiggleberry” is a beautifully illustrated children’s collection of rhyming tales about a zany town and the people that live within it.
In between raising her two adult daughters, Carrie has been an early childhood educator on and off for thirty five years. She created a phonics program that teaches pre reading by playing games, and found a calling preparing preschoolers for kindergarten when she was working in the LAUSD as a paraeducator. Following Covid, she found placement as a substitute teacher at the Round Meadow Elementary School.
One of Carrie’s first artistic memories is a poem she wrote to a friend’s mother when she was only ten years old. The woman recently passed away at 94, at which time the meaningful composition was surprisingly returned with a message of how the lyrical words decorated the wall of her friend’s family home for over five decades, captivating all who visited. Carrie Dawn proves art is everywhere if one has the vision to hang out to see what can develop.
“Each place I go to, I find the light.”
“Even in this place one can survive, and therefore one must want to survive, to tell the story, to bear witness; and that to survive we must force ourselves to save at least the skeleton, the scaffolding, the form of civilization. We are slaves, deprived of every right, exposed to every insult, condemned to certain death, but we still possess one power, and we must defend it with all our strength for it is the last — the power to refuse our consent.”— Primo Levi, Survival in Auschwitz
More than 70 years after its liberation, Auschwitz is an everlasting symbol of the Holocaust, one of the darkest chapters of history in which Hitler’s Nazi Germany killed 6,000,000. “Auschwitz. Not Long Ago. Not Far Away” is the only traveling exhibition on the concentration camp and its historical and human consequences. Beginning on March 24 at the Reagan Library, the exhibition will continue touring the world to show its complex reality to millions of people and illuminate how such a place could come into being and how its existence influences our worldview even today.
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library is the first stop in North America with more than 700 original objects and many unpublished photographic and audio-visual materials created by Musealia, the Spanish large scale exhibition creator and producer firm, in cooperation with the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum and more than twenty other renowned international institutions, private collectors and Shoah survivors.
The Auschwitz exhibition will be at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library for a limited time and pre-purchased tickets are recommended to ensure availability. The exhibition is for ages 12+ and care has been taken to ensure that there are no gratuitous depictions of violence. Every effort has been made to consider the emotional impact this story might have on visitors, so they can safely explore this history, seek to understand it better, and to make meaning for themselves.Exhibition at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley
Interactive innovations, new twists on time-honored foods, creative hotels, and rethinking timeless traditions make Israel worth rediscovering in 2023Written and Photographed by Elyse Glickman
This year is a particularly auspicious time to visit Israel, as it celebrates 75 years of nationhood in 2023. Beyond that, Angelenos should feel a particular affinity with Israel, especially as Israelis call Southern California home and their culture has left its mark on Los Angeles’ culture, cuisine, and lifestyle on both sides of Mulholland Drive. Furthermore, many local Jewish families have sent their kids on “birthright trips'' or visited family in Israel, while those from other religious backgrounds have taken their own Holy Land pilgrimages.
Those who have previously visited Israel in the past may compare Tel Aviv’s beachfront to the boardwalks of Venice Beach, Santa Monica, and beach cities near LAX. Jerusalem’s modern areas may remind some of Fairfax and Pico Robertson, while the Negev has much in common with the Coachella Valley. While Angelinos will feel right at home as they explore Israel’s cities, towns, and natural wonders, there will also be only-inIsrael experiences—from the ancient to the futuristic—that are inspirational, aspirational, and unforgettable.
is a prime example of an essential activity with its monumental vistas and ties to thousands of years worth of history. However, during the pandemic, smartphone apps, QR codes, and 3-D printed “bronze” statues were introduced to the walk in a subtle, tasteful way that transforms it into a time travel adventure with “accounts” from Crusaders, Turks, Jordanians, Arabs, and Jews who occupied the city over the course of 2,000 years. The Western Wall Heritage Foundation has added a new “Bridge Route” on its Western Wall Tunnel Tour, which expands upon its Great Stone Route. Each stairway down takes visitors deeper into the ancient world. This tour can be further enriched at the Chain of Generations Center, a state-of-the-art virtual journey presenting the Jewish history, from the time of Abraham through the modern State of Israel.
While the Dead Sea is a one-of-a-kind natural wonder, it wouldn’t be the destination it is without industrial pioneer Moshe Novomeysky. The Moshe Novomeysky Dead Sea Visitor Center, opened in late 2021, consists of restored industrial facilities, a commercial building, a dining room, and living compound. In each building, virtual reality technology allows visitors to be a witness to history as Novomyeski and others brought the Dead Sea and the foundation of Israel’s nationhood to fruition.
For 40 years, ANU – Museum of the Jewish People at Tel Aviv University has been a beloved institution for Jewish visitors exploring their cultural and religious roots. However, interactive installations, cutting edge animation, and Hollywood-caliber video productions introduced in 2021 will further deepen every visitor’s perspective on Jewish multiculturalism and contributions to world history regardless of religious affiliation.
Tel Aviv boasts a vibrant art scene, from high-end galleries to craft fairs (Jerusalem’s The Bezalel Arts Fair; Tel Aviv’s Nachalat Binyamin) and hip enclaves like Tel Aviv’s Old Jaffa awash with antique shops, jewelry ateliers, and artist studios. Be Tel Aviv Tours’ Street Art & Graffiti ventures into the world of street art in the Florentin neighborhood. What makes this tour more fun, however, is that participants can leave their mark in Florentin with an interactive graffiti art activity and use of apps the guide recommends that bring some of the murals to life.
In Yerucham, a residential Negev Desert town, two galleries stage workshops allowing one to create conversation-starting pieces to take home. At Studio Zuak, people of all ages can paint tiles and other ceramic pieces while developing a greater appreciation for Morocco’s cultural imprint on Israel. Sustainability-oriented Studio Suit-Case (suit-case.co/en/ workshops) offers workshops and take-home kits allowing anybody to craft practical (clocks, lamps, planters) and whimsical pieces with found items from the area.
The Isrotel Nevo Dead Sea Hotel and Spa makes international visitors feel welcome and comfortable in this geographically and geologically distinctive area, with Mid-Century modern decor in whites, blues, seafoam greens, and sand hues that play upon the distinctive landscape. Its private beachfront is nicely maintained, making a dip and float on the Dead Sea’s nourishing waters a real pleasure. Isrotel followed “suite” in late 2022 with KEDMA, combining the best features of its sprawling five-star Beersheet Resort (opened in 2011) with architecture inspired by Avdat, an archaeological park that was once a campground for second- and third century B.C. Nabataean caravans traveling along the early Petra–Gaza road.
The David Kempinski Tel Aviv, opened last fall, is one of the latest “modern luxury properties'' to boast restaurants, bars and surroundings frequented by Tel Aviv residents. However, several small “boutique” properties embodying the “stay like a local'' mindset are having a moment. The Bezalel Hotel in Jerusalem combines attributes of an art gallery with a thoughtfully run bed-and-breakfast. The Savoy Seaside in Tel Aviv (a five minute stroll from the David Kempinski), meanwhile, has a similar minimalist-chic feel, but with a beach house vibe as the Mediterranean Sea and beach promenade are right across the street. Both properties feature surprisingly excellent breakfasts with Israeli staples and fresh local produce that are on a par with many five-star properties just a few blocks away.
Bezalel and the Savoy Seaside are both less than a 15 minute walk to their respective city’s fabled food markets. In Jerusalem, the Machane Yehuda Market is home to incredible edible finds, including Yemenite “Laffa'' wraps at Jahnun Bar, Georgian breakfast fare at Hachapuria, excellent craft beers and ciders at Beer Bazaar, and Marzipan Bakery’s world-famous pastries. Tel Aviv’ Carmel, Hatikva, and Levinsky markets are also worth a look. Some of the raw materials sold here end up in the kitchens of Sarona Market, a glossy emporium with everything from Italian and French bistro cuisine to Moroccan sandwiches and Portuguese-style chicken. Those venturing into the Negev for outdoor activities or craft classes in Yerucham (which bears an uncanny resemblance to Palm Desert) will want to seek out Inti Hummusia for its silky-smooth hummus, baba ganoush, fluffy pita, and addictive fried cauliflower.
Both cities are also awash with high-end restaurants taking Israeli and Mediterranean cooking to new places. North Abraxas, one of the newest Eyal Shani restaurants in Tel Aviv features a witty menu describing dishes that deliver on the chef’s reputation. Seafood restaurant Manta Ray, beloved locally for its lavish breakfasts, serves up a similarly wonderful balance of simplicity and innovation with seafood. Jerusalem is home to Adom, with its stellar appetizers and cocktails, and HaMotzi, where chef Avy Levy blends his Israeli-Algerian roots through his rethinking of family recipes.
Whether you visit Israel to explore ancient civilizations, pursue an unforgettable adrenaline rush, sample classic and modern expressions of Middle Eastern cuisine, spend time reflecting in sacred spaces, or do a little of everything, it is time for a deeper look into this eternally fascinating destination.
While the “craft cocktail” movement was in progress over the past couple of decades, there was a counter-revolution extolling the virtues of “Dry January.” As far as advertising and marketing goes, it seemed like the perfect thing for brands, restaurants, and retailers to tout after the free-flowing celebratory excess of the winter holiday season. However, connoisseurs and the general public are recognizing that concerns like weight management, quality sleep, better skin, and digestion don’t go away—even after New Year’s resolutions have been forgotten.Written by Elyse Glickman
While “Dry January” provides a great start for some to ease into healthier habits, any time is a good time to dry out. Better still, thanks to the craft cocktail movement, going dry can be a mouth-watering experience with the same artistry associated with craft cocktails. Several top Los Angeles bartenders agree, and have made it a point to add a selection of mocktails to their menus. Some top L.A. restaurants offering non-alcoholic signature drinks include Soulmate, Gracias Madre, Boa Steakhouse, and Sushi Roku. And it’s not just happening here. Paris-based Matthias Giroud, who has created signature drinks for Paris bars and top hotels around the globe, is addressing the uptick in demand for non-alcoholic cocktails with recipe development for bars and home cocktail kits.
“Every generation seems to be embracing the mocktail movement, and I’ve seen guests of all ages requesting non-alcoholic drinks,” says Chris Chernock, Beverage Director at asterid, the hot new restaurant adjoining the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown L.A. “The interest for mocktails has been increasing for the past five years and has
been really heating up over the last two. There are so many reasons why people would choose to go alcohol free…. Sometimes it’s personal and sometimes people just think the flavor combinations sound good.”
Natalie Bovis, a bartending mainstay on the Los Angeles cocktail scene for 17 years and a brand ambassador for a number of cocktail-related products, is a pioneer in the high-quality/no alcohol end of the craft cocktail movement, thanks to her authoring and publishing Preggatinis: Mixology for the Mom-to-Be in 2008. The 15 year-old title has been such a success beyond its original intended audience that an updated version of the book will be released in late 2023 or early 2024.
“I prefer the term’ non-alcoholic cocktails’ rather than ‘mocktails’ since the release of that book because a craft cocktail approach to mocktails has only helped build interest,” explains Bovis. “As GenX hits middle age and Millennials mature, I definitely see interest in slowing down the alcohol intake and incorporating non-alc alternatives. I also see younger folks, the Gen Z-Zoomer generation, having a focus on health over hedonism. This booze-free-yet-fun trend is only growing as the years go by.
Furthermore, the health benefits of some mocktails go beyond physical health, as some booze-free ingredients bolster mental health, too. As alcohol is a depressant, the acts of making, serving, and sipping nonalcoholic cocktails can boost one’s state of mind as well as fitness.”
Some medical experts point out additional pitfalls about alcohol consumption: Our livers cannot process alcohol as efficiently, and the calorie count in cocktails is typically quite high. When you swap in healthier alternatives that look and taste just as good, the non-alcoholic cocktail is made that much more enjoyable. New York Times bestselling author (Bone Broth Breakthrough) and digestive health expert Dr. Kellyann Petrucci (a.k.a. Dr. Kellyann ‘the queen of bone broth’) points out that alcohol also affects gut health by irritating and overwhelming the gut lining. The good news is that drinking less alcohol now can further solidify good habits.
“Research suggests that many people drink less after they give up alcohol for a month and some people never go back,” says Dr. Petrucci, an avid advocate for “Dry January” who hopes people can take on the challenge at any time of year. She adds that mocktails
can be as functional as they are fashionable, sharing recipes that support immunity (“Cucumber Melon Cooler”), boost energy (“Kombucha Moscow Mule”), and better sleep (“Banana Daiquiri with crushed cocoa nibs rim”). “Cutting out alcoholic cocktails has many benefits including improved sleep, weight loss, and an overall better skin appearance. Drinking for nutrition should be as important as drinking for enjoyment.”
Although Chernock can’t speak to the added health benefits of mocktails, he will speak to the benefit of lowering one’s alcohol intake. “I’m hoping we can get to the point where it’s completely normal to (request) a non-alcoholic cocktail in between regular cocktails with alcohol or instead of to slow down consumption and to drink more responsibly over the course of time,” he says candidly.
Although there are numerous brands of non-alcoholic gin, rum, and whiskey on the market, Bovis notes using a bit of spice in the recipe can mimic the “burn” of alcohol without the booze. Sometimes that little kick adds a subconscious substitution for a boozy drink. However, she also insists that you are only as limited as your imagination or supplies when it comes to making non-alcoholic drinks that promise to generate a healthy buzz among one’s friends and family.
“In my book Preggatinis: Mixology for the Mom-to-Be, I have a whole chapter dedicated to stocking one’s home bar with fresh fruits, tea-based syrups, shrubs, flavored sparkling water, gorgeous glassware, and flavored and decorative ice cubes,” she says. “By serving a non-alcoholic cocktail in a fancy glass with a fun garnish and layers of flavor, it is every bit as satisfying as a cocktail, and the person still gets the glamorous feeling of cocktail culture.”
A good example of a drink that hits these high points is the Sumo Citrus Orange Grapefruit Mocktail with thyme and lemon is a refreshingly delicious mocktail with an acidity and sweetness that when mixed mimic the flavor and punch of their cocktail cousins. While sweet Sumo Citrus Mandarins bring a rich, sweet body to the drink, fresh grapefruit juice blends in a wonderful, tart depth of flavor.
And speaking of produce, Chernock notes that your local farmers market is one of the best places to find produce and other artisanal ingredients that will help you build a home bar. While he touts high-end sparkling water and sodas with and without flavors to expand your creative options, one of his personal favorite mixers is hop water. The refreshing beverage is made by infusing soda water with fresh hops primarily used in beer production. The result is a refreshing, clean, and floral bubbly beverage that is fun to bounce flavors off of.
“In California, we’re lucky to have some amazing citrus, which is crucial to balancing a cocktail,” he says. “With citrus, I usually add a sweetener to balance, which can be adjusted according to what is in season and available near you. For example, a standard simple syrup is equal parts sugar and water, but you can substitute the water for pureed strawberries or juiced pomegranate to add a fruity layer to the drink. Lastly, a quick tip to lengthen your non-alcoholic beverage is to add soda. This can be anything from soda water to a grapefruit soda, ginger beer, tonic, or your favorite La Croix. This is a good opportunity to mix and match flavors you might be interested in.”
The number of retail “bottle” shops selling only non alcoholic beverage and zero proof spirits alternatives has also increased, along with bars specializing in zero-proof cocktails (research this at home). Chernock points to several products, including Kin Euphorics, said to elevate one’s mood with adaptogens and nootropics (to help lower stress and support brain cognition. In a way, it’s hoping to elevate your mood to match that of socially drinking alcohol with friends. Other attractive alternatives making the rounds online, in store and on social media include Ritual Zero-Proof Whiskey Alternative, Monday Zero-Alcohol Gin, Ronsin Non-Alcoholic Rum, and Ghia Non-Alcoholic Aperitif.
“There are a ton out there now and many brands offering a straight up alternative for spirits such as Lyre’s, a UK brand making alcoholfree alternatives to rum, bourbon, gin, vermouth, orange liqueur, and even aperitifs,” says Chernock. “Another one I like is French Bloom Blanc, a de- alcoholised sparkling wine made with French grapes with notes of grape and apple and a significant effervescence. It’s a surprisingly close alternative to sparkling wine.”
Matthias Giroud, l'Alchimiste, Paris, France
Makes 1 Cocktail
6 to 8 large ice cubes
1 2/3 oz apricot nectar
½ oz homemade rooibos-vanilla syrup
1 tbsp. teaspoon orange blossom
3 oz ginger kombucha
Place a few ice cubes in the glass and add all the ingredients except the kombucha, then stir. Stir in the kombucha and add the rest of the ice cubes.
Garnish and serve.
To make the rooibos-vanilla syrup:
3 oz powdered white sugar
3 oz mineral water -
1 tsp rooibos tea
Mix the sugar with the water in a saucepan and bring to the boil until you obtain a syrup. Remove the pan from the heat and add the rooibos.
Cover and let infuse for 2 hours at room temperature.
Filter before use.
Store at room temperature for approximately 2 weeks.
Matthias Giroud, l'Alchimiste, Paris, France
Makes 1 Cocktail
Bartender note: You surely know the gin and tonic! Here, I suggest a smoother version with a preparation that I particularly like: Seedlip, a distilled spirit without alcohol.
1 2/3 oz ml Seedlip Groove 42
1/3 oz lemon juice with homemade juniper berries
1/3 oz timur berry cordial (from the Monin-Paragon brand)
3 oz tonic
4 to 6 large ice cubes
Fill the glass with ice cubes, then pour the lemon juice with juniper berries. Add the timur berry cordial and tonic. Mix and garnish.
Chris Chernock, Beverage Director: asterid, Los Angeles
½ oz meyer lemon juice
½ oz oro blanco juice
½ oz pomegranate syrup (grenadine)
¼ oz ginger syrup
1 ½ oz persimmon infused Lyre’s Dry Vermouth
3 oz French Bloom N/A Sparkling Wine
Add all ingredients except the n/a sparkling wine to a shaker with ice and briefly shake.
Add the non-alcoholic sparkling wine to the shaker tin after shaking and strain over fresh ice into a Collins glass.
Garnish with a dehydrated blood orange wheel.
Makes 2-3 cocktails
½ cup filtered water
¼ cup agave nectar
4 fresh thyme sprigs
3 Sumo Citrus Mandarins
2/3 cup fresh grapefruit juice (1 to 2 grapefruits)
2 to 3 tbsp pure organic cane sugar
2 cups sparkling water
Cut Sumo Citrus Mandarins across the middle and squeeze all juice out of 2 of them into a measuring jug with a spout, or cocktail shaker, for easy serving.
Peel remaining mandarins and cut into chunks for garnish.
Add fresh grapefruit juice to the jug.
Add juice of ½ the lemon into the jug and stir. To rim glasses with sugar, cut remaining lemon in half and squeeze juice onto a small plate. On a second small plate, spread out the sugar. Dip rim of glasses into lemon juice, then into sugar.
Cut remaining quarter of the lemon into chunks for garnish.
Fill glasses ¾ full with ice cubes and divide juice mixture equally between glasses. Add 1 to 3 tbsp agave mixture, to taste, into each glass.
Top with up to 2 cups total sparkling water, dividing the sparkling water equally among glasses.
Garnish with orange and lemon, and any remaining grapefruit can be sliced to garnish also.
Add a sprig of thyme into each glass for garnish.
To make thyme simple syrup for this recipe:
In a small saucepan, add filtered water. Bring to boil, then turn off heat. Stir in agave nectar until combined.
Add 1 full sprig of thyme, including all the secondary smaller branches and stem. Stir and let cool completely.
To use the thyme in this recipe, we steep it in some water and agave nectar, to infuse the liquid. This gets added to the orange, grapefruit, and lemon juices, along with sparkling water to top things off. The sugar rim for the glasses is an optional but tasty step, for a touch of extra sweetness with each sip. Then more fresh thyme sprigs finish off these mocktails, as a fun garnish for serving!
We will never know what happened to cause two beautiful German Shepherds to run loose through the streets in a raging storm in early January. Since then, the pups have stolen the hearts of every person who has worked to save them, and now they are ready to find their forever home together.
Major and Elizabeth are full of personality. Major is about four years old and quite simply is a love bug, steady and sweet and always ready for a kiss. Elizabeth is about two years old and is full of joy. She’s an active girl who never met a toy she didn’t like, and is always ready to fetch and play. Not only are they sweet and fun, they are also a well-behaved pair. They both recently took a trip to the veterinarian to get vaccinated, and Elizabeth was a perfect lady.
This two-some loves each other and shouldn’t be separated. They’ve been through a lot and deserve to have their very own family. Please contact their foster mom Melissa if you can give Major and Elizabeth a place to call home: cell: (310) 309-0099 or email: email@example.com.