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WHERE WE LIVE

VENTURABLVD.GOLDENSTATE.IS

SIX DOLLARS

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APRIL 2018

VENTURA BLVD | APRIL 2018

Calabasas | Encino | Sherman Oaks | Studio City | Tarzana | Toluca Lake | Woodland Hills


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APRIL 2018

where we live

34 DATEBOOK Fun Stuff To Do

20 Q & A Educational Consultant Jamie Bakal

44 WEEKENDER The Chileno Bay Resort

24 CHILDHOOD 2.0 Four Cutting-Edge Local Companies

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53 CAMPING IT FORWARD Camp Helping Hands 86 SEEN Faces Spotted Around Town

24 78

features 28 VALLEY VOGUE Have a peek at what is au courant in teen fashion. 36 NO TEENAGE WASTELAND Remembering the 80s, when you could club hop across the Valley to see some of the biggest names in the biz. 55 TOP TEENS: 10 TO WATCH Meet 10 Valley teenagers in our annual ode to excellence. 74 REMEMBER FOR US Three local Holocaust survivors share reflections for the next generation. 78 HOME ON THE RANCH Step inside an idyllic dwelling for a family of four in Studio City. COVER Photographed by Monica Orozco; Rendered by Christine Georgiades

the sauce 68 GLOBAL FUSION Wood & Water in Sherman Oaks 70 LOVE ME TENDER The Valley’s Best Chicken Tenders 72 SWEET ART Art-Inspired Cake Making

and then some... 46 KIDS CAMPS & SUMMER PROGRAMS A Guide to All Things Summer 87 PROFILES Top-Notch Schools and Child Service Providers 110 REAL ESTATE Spectacular Local Listings 130 CONFESSIONS OF A HELICOPTER PARENT A mom makes no apologies.


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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

PUBLISHER

Linda Grasso

Robin Sanders 818-427-2050 | robin@goldenstate.is

ART DIRECTOR Michelle Villas

ADVERTISING Senior Media Solutions Manager | Sue Williams

EDITORIAL

818-625-3515 | sue@goldenstate.is

Editorial Director | Darren Elms Media Solutions Manager | Erika Carrion Copy Editors | Peggy Jo Abraham,

310-897-2424 | erika@goldenstate.is

Laura Watts Media Solutions Manager | Marcie Gutierrez Graphic Designer | Christine Georgiades

424-220-6337 | marcie@goldenstate.is

VB’s The Sauce eNewsletter Editor

Media Solutions Manager | Amy Tetherow

Joshua Lurie

424-220-6338 | amy@goldenstate.is

CONTRIBUTORS

GROUP PUBLISHER

Heather David, Lissa Kapstrom, Kathleen

Jared Sayers

Laccinole, Allison Rae Marsh, Kara Mickelson, Cat Sherwin, Susan Spillman, Rachel Heller Zaimont PHOTOGRAPHERS Michael Becker, Annie Deptula, Tameka Jacobs, Shane O’Donnell, Monica Orozco

MANAGING PARTNERS Charles C. Koones

Todd Klawin

MARKETING & OPERATIONS Partner/Brand Publisher | Emily Stewart Partner/Managing Director, Media & Analytics | Warren Schaffer Brand Publisher | Hannah Lee Director of Marketing & Business Development | Cherice Tatum Director of Digital | Charles Simmons Director of Film & Video | Bryce Lowe-White Art Director | Angela Akers Digital Marketing Manager | Mike Sayers Operations Director | Allison Jeackjuntra Marketing Manager | Rachel Gotko Director of Events | Danielle Price Accounting | Janet De La Cruz No part of this periodical may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior written consent from The Golden State Company, LLC. Any and all submissions to this or any of The Golden State Company, LLC publications become the property of The Golden State Company, LLC and may be used in any media. We reserve the right to edit. TO OUR READERS Ventura Blvd welcomes your feedback. Please send letters to: Reader Response Department, Ventura Blvd PO Box 3760, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266. Please include your name, address and email. Edited letters may be published. SUBSCRIPTIONS Email: info@moontidemedia.com or phone: 310-376-7800. Subscriptions are $29 per year.

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200 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite. 110, El Segundo, CA 90245 Tel 310-376-7800 | Fax 310-376-0200 | venturablvd.goldenstate.is


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editor’s letter | LINDA GRASSO

PHOTOGRAPEHD BY MONICA OROZCO

With Top Teen Darrion Sellman at the photo shoot

Harder Than It Looks The start-to-finish cycle of an issue of Ventura Blvd is typically three months. But the April issue, with its cornerstone VB Top Teen: 10 to Watch article (page 55), is a yearlong endeavor. I start my Top Teen file for the next year the day after we go to press with the April issue—and I continue to fill it with prospects throughout the year. I discover some candidates in newspaper articles and on websites; others are shared with me via email. In December, we start sending out the official email blast asking the community to for submissions—and then for the next six weeks, the floodgates burst wide open. The kids I read about always blow me away. And each year, the ante seems to be raised. So what do we look for in a VB Top Teen? The starting point is academic excellence. Secondly, they all exhibit good character. The third thing is kind of subjective. It can involve an endeavor that has a number or award attached to it—but it doesn’t have to. There could be an astounding achievement—or not. It is simply something about the person that, when I read the submission aloud to our team of six, they shout, “That’s a VB Top Teen!” We highlight a couple dozen and then we shift into (a somewhat heated) debate mode to narrow it down. We try to have the finalists be an accurate representation of the best and brightest youth in the Valley—and this year’s group is no exception. Don’t miss writer Rachel Heller Zaimont’s touching Remember For Us article (page 74). Rachel shares the stories of three local Holocaust survivors—keying in on what they’d like the next generation to share with their children. And finally a quick thank you to Olivia Marsh, a student at Notre Dame High School. Olivia is the daughter of our stylist for the Valley Vogue fashion feature (page 28), Allison Rae Marsh. When our professional female model had to cancel the morning of the shoot due to illness, Olivia stepped in and saved the day! Top Teen, indeed.

Linda Grasso Editor-in-Chief

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Follow me on Instagram @linda.grasso and my podcast @she_sez




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april SPRING FEVER

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 | VENTURA BLVD

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School Matchmaker

Navigating the private school admissions process with educational consultant Jamie Bakal PHOTOGRAPH BY SHANE O’DONNELL

As a former educator and native Angeleno, Jamie Bakal has had her finger on the pulse of the city’s ever-changing educational environment for nearly two decades. An alumna of Oakwood School, Jamie is a former elementary school teacher. For the past 12 years, she has worked as an educational consultant with her firm, LA School Mates, guiding families toward private schools where their children can thrive. Here VB editor Linda Grasso queries Jamie on how to pinpoint the right school and how to keep stress in check during the admissions process.

Should one get suggestions on elementary schools from preschool teachers? Preschool teachers as well as directors tend to understand the ins and outs of the independent schools. They can be a valuable resource in helping parents understand which schools and communities will be a good fit.

Beginning the search process for a private school can be overwhelming. Advice? Go see the schools in person. You will have that “ah-ha” moment where your gut tells you that is where your child belongs. And trust your gut. What are some key things to think about? The most important is the idea of “fit.” Just because a school is great for someone else, does not mean it is great for you and your family. Secondly, it is important to be realistic about how many spots there are for new families (siblings, alumni and faculty kids can take up much of what’s available). Because there are often few spots, parents should apply to a handful of schools. At the same time, don’t shy away from fighting for a spot at a school with limited space, for fear of not being accepted.



What factors—outside academics—should be taken into consideration? Parents should think about how many classes per grade, the student-to-teacher ratio, how often kids get P.E., the competitive sports, art and music programs. Other things to consider: Are the kids taught a foreign language? How much structure is there? Do they help develop the whole child? What is the community like and how involved do parents get? Private high schools often get labels. Harvard Westlake is labeled the school for brainiacs. Oakwood, the school for smart, creative kids. Notre Dame, for athletes, etc. Thoughts? I believe that these labels are just that … labels. They were created by parents, not educators. Many of these schools will meet the needs of different types of kids. Most of the independent schools appreciate not just socioeconomic and ethnic diversity, but also diversity of personalities and interests.

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No school wants a student body that is homogeneous. What are private elementary schools looking for these days from a family? Above all else, schools want kind, inclusive families who seek to be productive members of their community. Obviously everyone’s ability to donate or volunteer time varies. That said, schools expect parents to participate both with giving and participation to the best of their capabilities.

Some parents today are looking for private institutions that are focused on educating the whole child. Are there schools here in the Valley that share that socially conscious goal? Absolutely. Almost all of them aim to focus on the whole child, particularly in elementary school. I believe the schools share a common goal of not just educating children, but turning them into thoughtful, inclusive, productive members of society.

I’m not a big fan of all the memorization they make kids do in school these days—particularly in high school. I feel like it goes in one ear and out the other. Thoughts? Many schools, even traditional schools, now incorporate projectbased learning. In the past few years, the schools on the whole have been modernizing their curriculum based on current research of best practice. With the goal of long-term retention of information, many schools have moved toward block schedules and trimesters.

How important is it that parents make charitable contributions? Very. As expensive as tuitions are, they do not entirely cover the cost of running the school. All of the great educators, programs, supplies, technology and campus upgrades are entirely because of parent giving. It also helps support each school’s endowment, which supports financial aid. Schools seek to have 100% giving. What if a kid is particularly athletic and is leaning toward a private school because of a sports program. Good idea? That is fine, so long as the school offers the right academic program for that child as well. How do you view the progressive versus traditional elementary school education? Does it make any difference when applying to college? Many of the private schools have now become a good balance of many different pedagogies. Don’t get stuck on the label of “progressive” or “traditional.” If a school does not have letter grades and you cannot wrap your head around that, then it is not the right school for you. When evaluating progressive versus traditional, it is only relevant to the placement of your own children. There is not a best school or practice. It is about what is best for your child and family.

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fun and then share their own thoughts on the teachers and the school. Try to avoid making your child feel like they are getting judged or tested. For older kids, I find it helpful for kids to make a list of their questions in advance. I also encourage them to reread their application prior to the interview. This will help relax them and make them feel prepared.

Go see the schools in person. You will have that “ah-ha” moment where your gut tells you that is where your child belongs. And trust your gut.”

What kind of advice can you offer parents with a child who is a great kid but clams up during an interview? Most schools don’t actually interview kindergarten applicants. They have “play dates” to assess the child’s kindergarten readiness. But for kids who have a hard time separating, I recommend parents empower their child by encouraging them to go have

I’m also not a big fan of hours of homework. My feeling is that kids should not come home at 7 p.m. after a full day of school and extracurricular activities and have to stay up late doing dozens of math problems. There has been a recent pushback against excessive homework. While each school varies, it does seem that teachers and schools are working more collaboratively to not only give less homework, but to teach time management skills and provide time during the school day to complete homework. That said, there are still some schools where students have three to five hours of homework per night. Final word? Above all else, make this process about your child and your family only. It is completely irrelevant to your process what school your friends’ kids attend. Or what they think of any school. See the schools and form your own opinions … your opinion of each school is the only opinion that matters. ■


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FORWARD THINKING Clockwise from top left: class at Organic Kids L.A.; a WonderTent event; kids at WeVillage; a Tummy Thyme cube

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Childhood 2.0

What four innovative companies are doing to enhance the lives of kids and parents

CHILDCARE REINVENTED As anyone with children knows, getting childcare can be a challenge. WeVillage Childcare Center in Sherman Oaks aims to change that. With a flexible drop-off program and extended hours, the center caters to the needs of busy parents. Spur-of-the-moment appointment? No problem—the center is fully staffed with certified caregivers and teachers and ready to accept your kid. Last-minute Saturday night sitter cancellation? WeVillage to the rescue. Gotta work late? Not an issue— the center is open. WeVillage’s nontraditional approach extends to the space. The well-crafted, 3,000-square-foot structure is state-of-theart, with designated play areas for each age. There are toddler, transition, preschool and after-school programs. Enrichment classes, weekend care and camps are also offered. And even the smallest of tots are welcome. The center accepts infants as young as 6 weeks old. Main attraction: A climbing net—essentially a Tarzan-style indoors play area—which kids of all ages go bonkers over. wevillage.com THE ULTIMATE SLEEPOVER When Trish Healy’s newly adopted daughter—a 12-year-old foster child—asked to have her first sleepover party, the former Korn Ferry executive went all out—crafting a large, hand-sewn tent filled with mattresses and lush bedding where the girls could bond over a magical, shared experience. When guests raved afterwards, Trish was inspired to found WonderTent Parties. There is a full range of tented sleepover experiences to choose from in just about any theme. For the Slumber Under (ages 3+), a



tented experience is created for kids not yet ready for the full overnighter. The SleepOver caters to ages 7+. For the SleepOut (ages 12+), a ginormous outdoor tent is fabricated and stocked with comfy mattresses, lush blankets, bedside tables and lanterns. Trish and her team provide everything needed: delivery, setup and styling, as well as breakdown and pickup the next day. New attractions: WonderTent is now doing experiences for adults. The company recently did a “boho chic” 50th birthday party as well as a Dodger-themed surprise soiree that provided 10 female guests with sleeping quarters in a “WonderDome.” wondertentparties.com ADVENTURE IN A CUBE Start your child’s love affair with food early. That’s one of the goals of Tummy Thyme, which combines food groups in striking color combinations in a fist-sized cube—all aimed at stimulating your baby’s palate and visual curiosity. The online company is the brainchild of a Valley couple who came up with an innovative way of preparing food for their own daughter. Their signature product is a vibrant, fresh-frozen cube for babies and toddlers. The 4-ounce, preservative-free cubes—which layer ingredients in an attractive palette—are made with locally sourced (when possible) organic fruits and vegetables, legumes, grains and non-GMO proteins. Immediately after cooking, the various meals are frozen into cubes, locking in important vitamins and minerals without the need for preservatives. For infants, dishes include Roasted Pear & Ginger with Greek Yoghurt, Japanese Sweet Potato with Coconut & Cilantro and Baked Atlantic Salmon with Asian Greens. Toddlers

can choose from items like Baked Grass-fed Beef Spaghetti Bolognese, Savory Corn and Zucchini Muffins and Quinoa Mac n’ Peas. New on the menu: a ready-to-serve line. The “grab and go” meals in a jar are refrigerator safe for up to three days and don’t require any preparation. tummy-thyme.com LET’S DO LUNCH In 2011, when her child was nearly a year old, Lisa Rotondi began making baby food for friends. The operation turned into a home/ frozen meal delivery service for families, who then started asking for homemade, healthy, delivered meals for their children’s lunches. And Organic Kids L.A. was born. Operating out of a commercial kitchen in North Hollywood (a nut-free facility), the company now delivers meals to schools across the city, including 15 private institutions here in the Valley. Lunches are available in three different sizes: small, medium or large. The company gets 99% of its fresh fruits and veggies, as well as much of its frozen produce for smoothies, from a certified organic farmer. There are no pesticides or GMOs in any of the dishes. Red meat is mostly grass-fed and chicken is free roaming with non-GMO/pesticide-free feed. The company works with the La Crescenta-based Harmony Farms, which sells the Mary’s Free Range Chicken brand. Vegan and gluten-free options are available. Bonus: Organic Kids L.A. now has classes and summer camps for young cooking enthusiasts, and it recently started offering family take-home dinners as well. organickidsla.com ■

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y e l l a v gue o v Bold colors and whimsical patterns dominate teen fashion this spring— strong looks that are meant to be combined. Here are some of the most fun, fashion-forward styles that can take kids from the classroom to the Friday night dance.

PHOTOGRAPHED BY ANNIE DEPTULA | STYLED BY ALLISON RAE MARSH | MAKEUP BY CAT SHERWIN JACKSON OLLER, COURTESY OF LA MODELS SHOT ON LOCATION AT BEVERLY PARK, THE OUTDOOR EVENTS SPACE AT THE GARLAND IN NORTH HOLLYWOOD. FOR MORE GO TO THEGARLAND.COM.


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Yellow bomber jacket by Elwood, elwoodclothing.com, $38; newspaper button-up shirt by Elwood, $34; Ben Sherman chambray pants, Macy’s, $70; yellow suede Vans, Urban Outfitters, $60



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Indigo denim parka jacket by Elwood, elwoodclothing.com, $54; olive cuffed track pant by Elwood, $34; black & white striped T-shirt by Elwood, $18; blue Golden Goose sneakers, Sy Devore in Studio City, $415 Jungle print Barbarella top, $176 and shorts, $148, lykkewullf.com; gold necklace with diamond, safiaday.com, $300; gold ball bracelets, lovearoundtheneck.com, $45; Golden Goose sneakers, Barneys, $490

Black & white gingham top, lykkewullfcom, $130; diamond gold lightning bolt necklace, safiaday.com,  $600; gold hoop earrings, lovearoundtheneck.com, $175

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Jackson Oller, 16, Crespi Carmelite High School Olivia Marsh, 17, Notre Dame High School




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Pink denim jacket by Nobody, Bloomingdale’s, $229; red floral print bodysuit, shopafrm.com, $44; denim skirt by Sandro, Bloomingdale’s, $250; silver multi-chain necklace, cam-jewelry.com, $75

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Spectator Event

Going on Now Rembrandt and the Inspiration of India

23 surviving drawings made in the style of artists serving the Mughal court in India. Through June 24. getty.edu

Very Eric Carle Exhibit

Children are invited to step into the pages of Eric Carle’s colorful picture books in this play-and-learn exhibit. Geared for ages 2 to 6. Through May 13. la.discoverycube.org

March 16 – 18 Tomatomania

The popular seedling sale hits the Tapia Brothers Farm Stand in Encino, showcasing nearly 300 varieties. New this year: classes to learn how to grow like a pro. tomatomania.com

25 Vegan Street Fair

Local restaurants and vendors come together to serve vegan eats in NoHo. vegansgtreetfair.com.

April 19 Native Son

Leonard Bernstein at 100

On the centennial of his birth, the Skirball presents a celebration of the life and work of American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein (West Side Story, On the Waterfront). Organized by the GRAMMY Museum and curated by its director and renowned music historian, Robert Santelli, the exhibition is the most comprehensive retrospective of Bernstein’s life and career ever staged in a museum setting. April 26 – September 2. skirball.org

21 Not an Ostrich: And Other Images from America’s Library

A curated excavation of nearly 500 images—out of a collection of over 14 million—housed at the Library of Congress, which vividly portray America across time. Through September 9. annenbergphotospace.org

24 & 25 Shen Yun

A peformance featuring one of the world’s oldest art forms— classical Chinese dance—accompanied by special effects and a full orchestra. valleyperformingartscenter.org 28

Autism Speaks Walk

Register for this annual event at the Rose Bowl, which raises money for autism research. act.autismspeaks.org

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CREDIT: LEONARD BERNSTEIN, C. 1940S, COURTESY OF THE LEONARD BERNSTEIN OFFICE

Richard Wright’s iconic novel comes to life in this adaptation from the Antaeus Theatre Company. Through June 3. antaeus.org


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Remembering the ‘80s, when the Valley was the epicenter of the rock club scene WRITTEN BY KATHLEEN LACCINOLE

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CLUBBING IT Tom Petty with Del Shannon at the Country Club in Reseda; crooner Jackson Browne at the Country Club; Rikki Rocket from the band Poison. Top two photos by Sal Guitarez, the official photographer for the Country Club back in the day.

W

hen I was 10 and fancied myself a blossoming classical pianist, my parents took me to my first “rock” concert: Chicago at The Forum. It was crowded and hot. The air smelled strange. I wondered if it was marijuana. It scared me. April was the first of us to get a driver’s license. This meant that at 15, I’d see my first real concert—sans parents—again at The Forum: Supertramp. This time I definitely smelled pot. It still frightened me, but I didn’t let April know. It was packed … and loud—so loud that the music vibrated in my chest like a heartbeat. I was hooked. It was a 20-minute drive back to Calabasas and $1 for gas. From then on, Sunday mornings brought a race to the Los Angeles Times Calendar section. Who was coming to The Forum? What about The Palomino Club in North Hollywood and Wolf & Rismiller’s Country Club in Reseda? At the time, those two were considered some of the best live clubs not just in LA but in the country. I wasn’t old enough to go. I didn’t have the money but still … Elvis Costello, The Pretenders, Emmylou Harris—so many great acts just miles from my house. Thankfully, there was disco—and the Valley was the zenith of teen discothèques, where you had to show ID to prove you were under 18. The Calabasas High School crew hit The Ozone for dancing, sweating and watching— i.e. ascertaining who was doing what with whom. There I was, in spandex and red platforms, 2 inches taller than anyone else (my height being an attribute that generally left me standing on the sidelines or dancing with a girl). But after a car struck the captain of the football team in the parking lot, leaving him a quadriplegic, we never went back; too young for the tragic indoctrination into the real world outside our bubble. We moved to Phazes in Canoga Park, its New Wave music pulling teens from the Westside fave, The Odyssey. I was happy to stay local. With its rumors of sex in the



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parking lot, the Odyssey was intimidating. The Tapestry in Northridge was home to the avant-garde. Guys danced with guys and girls kissed girls—an androgynous clump of confused hormones. I wore fishnets with tight skirts, lace gloves and shellac-sprayed hair. The kids took drugs. I just wanted to look like Madonna. If you were edgy, there was the Sugar Shack, the epicenter of teen nightclubs where the wild ones hung … and lots of adults. Rumors of KROQ’s celebrity deejay Rodney Bingenheimer’s presence continuously floated, but I never saw him. I didn’t know what he looked like, but decked in black velvet scrunchie and Krystle Carrington-inspired shoulder pads, I felt cool anyhow. Then came the magical summer between high school and college, a holding pattern until the rest of my life began, unsure if my glass was half empty or half full, but with the freedom to explore. We started venturing “over the hill” to the ultimate club scene: The Starwood, Gazzarri’s, The Whisky, The Roxy and The Rainbow—a bar where we’d eat lousy food, hoping to spot a rock star. Rumor had it Rodney hung out there, too. I’d eventually move to West Hollywood, get a music degree from UCLA and land at Epic Records. And so, the rest of my life began. Disco went away, so did New Wave, Glam and Metal. They’d all come back and leave again. The constant waves and changing tides of art and style were a metaphor for my life, as my love for live music rolled in and out through marriage, childbirth, divorce and all that came after. It wasn’t until the late ‘80s that I’d finally make it to the Palomino for a Long Riders’ show. Changing demographics eventually stopped drawing big acts here. The Country Club closed in 1995; the Palomino soon after. Its neon sign now hangs in the Valley Relics Museum in Chatsworth. I finally did see Rodney Bingenheimer. He was small—from age, stature or perhaps just the weight of his big, burgundy velvet coat. The other day I drove past the spot on Lankershim where the Palomino once stood—home now to a nondescript banquet facility. I could see ghosts of so many young me’s, in my Jordache jeans, heart beating to the music, dreaming of things that ultimately would never be. But now who cares? I’m lucky just to have been a music-loving teen growing up in the Valley. ■

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BOSS IN THE HOUSE Bruce Springsteen backstage during a Smokey Robinson concert at the Country Club in 1982.


BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN, JAMES BROWN AND COUNTRY CLUB EXTERIOR PHOTOGRAPHED BY SAL GUITAREZ



TWIST & SHOUT Clockwise from top left: Wolf & Rissmillers Country Club in Reseda; Poison’s Brett Michaels at The Whiskey; The Rainbow Bar and Grill on the Sunset Strip; James Brown at the Country APRIL 2018 | VENTURA Club BLVD in 391981.


From left to right: Max Cameron, Loss Prevention Officer; Brandon Chhea, Banquet Houseman; Efren Ruano, In-Room Dining Sous Chef; Terri Haack, President; Claudia Molera, Captain Server and Trainer at mar’sel; Yuka Obayashi, Nail Technician; Penelope Bankwitz, Room Attendant

TERRANEA: ABOVE & BEYOND You know the resort, but how well do you know the people who make Terranea one of LA’s favorite destinations? From the concierge to the restaurants to The Spa and everywhere in between, Terranea Resort’s associates offer that personal touch to each visit and experience. Here we introduce you to a few of those individuals and share some of their most memorable guest moments. So when you come by the resort next time for dinner, a spa treatment or a special event, you just might run into a familiar face. PHOTOGRAPHED BY SHANE O’DONNELL


CLAUDIA MOLERA Server and Trainer at mar’sel Hometown: Berlin, Germany “I feel very blessed getting to look at the ocean and experience the peacefulness of the hotel. Not being stuck in traffic on the 405 doesn’t hurt either. I get to see whales and dolphins passing by and feel very connected to nature when I am here.”

MAX CAMERON Loss Prevention Officer

Hometown: Hollywood, California “I received a phone call from a guest—a father of a young girl. I could hear the child sobbing in the background. The reason for the call? The little girl’s treasured stuffed frog, which had faithfully been by her side through two dental surgeries, had gone missing. This call resonated with me because as a child, I too had a stuffed animal that I treasured. I scoured every inch of the property for this stuffed companion. Just when I was thinking all hope was lost, I discovered the stuffed frog in the bushes near the Beach Cove. The stuffed critter had become dirty due to the rain, and I immediately rushed to the laundry department, where he was cleaned up. I called the father with the news, and within minutes the father and little girl were in the lobby. As I turned the corner, the little girl’s face lit up with a glow that I will never forget as she saw her friend in my arms. She ran to me as I kneeled down to give the frog back and gave me a hug of pure joy. I will never, ever forget that moment.”

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

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PENELOPE BANKWITZ

EFREN RUANO

Hometown: Phoenix, Arizona

Hometown: Long Beach, California

“My first Christmas working at the resort I was able to see many of our guests complimenting our service as well as the resort in general, and it was truly amazing.”

“My most memorable interaction with a guest on property was when one of our guests asked me who made the mole in a dish. I told my story of how my mother showed me how to cook mole when I was a teenager and mentioned this was one of my family’s recipes. She seemed so delighted with my response and to really enjoy and appreciate her meal a little more in that moment.”

Room Attendant

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In-Room Dining Sous Chef

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION


BRANDON CHHEA Banquet House Attendant

Hometown: Phnom Penh, Cambodia “When an elderly couple on crutches and a wheelchair asked me how to get to Nelson’s, I told them I would call the valet to assist in providing a ride there via our Lexus fleet. The couple insisted that it was unnecessary and they could walk. I called the valet regardless, and they were so grateful to receive the extra attention and care.”

YUKA OBAYASHI Nail Technician

Hometown: Tokyo, Japan “I get to meet guests from all over the world and hear all kinds of beautiful stories every day. Our goal is for every guest to walk out of the salon with a smile; it is the best feeling when they let us know what a great time they had. I met a guest from Germany who visits Terranea three to four times a year. We became very good friends. Terranea definitely created this wonderful friendship. I am actually visiting her in Germany, and we are going to Japan together!”

For more information and to experience all that Terranea has to offer, please call 855.416.3928.

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

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Getting Away… with Kids

The new Chileno Bay Resort is the rare 5-star property that pampers parents and kids. WRITTEN BY LINDA GRASSO

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My mom always said travel without kids is a vacation; with kids, it is a trip. But every blue moon, we need time with our children, and we don’t want to give up luxuries. While at first glance, the Chileno Bay Resort seems like an idyllic couples spot, the property is also geared toward families—offering a variety of amenities to let parents feel relaxed while keeping children fully entertained. Owned by Auberge Resorts, The Chileno Bay Resort opened in early 2017. The company also owns the nearby Esperanza Resort as well as Auberge du Soleil in Napa. During our three-day visit, the service was among the best of any luxury property I’ve visited. From the eateries to the housekeeping, the service has the consistency of a more established resort—one with a seasoned staff that has learned the art of being intuitive. For example, at one point I was in the spa steam room and I felt a bit overwhelmed by the heat. As if reading my mind, an attendant suddenly stepped in with a bottle of water and a cold towel. While some poolside waiters feel compelled to interrupt you every 30 minutes— regardless of whether you are deep in conversation or snoozing—the Chileno staff seems to know when you want to be left alone. Sixty rooms and 32 villas are set amid the 1,200-acre property, which fronts Cabo’s largest swimmable beach. The resort is located on the Sea of Cortez side of the peninsula (not the ocean side) and


snorkeling is delightful. Décor throughout is modern and sophisticated, but unpretentious and comfortable. Rooms and villas have amply sized, artfully tiled bathrooms and outdoor showers. The resort is built around a dazzling infinity pool, positioned on three levels. There’s a children’s pool at the top, a family pool in the middle and an adults-only pool at the bottom that “spills” into the sea. A noise buffering waterfall is strategically placed at the edge of the children’s pool. The Spa at Chileno Bay is also exceptional. The serene space includes eucalyptus steam and salt inhalation rooms, sauna whirlpools and cold water plunges. My husband and I both decided to go for the signature “Auberge Head to Toe.” It is a 90-minute treatment which includes—hands down–the best massage I’ve ever had. My husband concurred. Little ones can be checked into the Kids Club for the day; there’s also a large lawn adjacent to the kid’s pool that is filled with sports equipment, games and mini trampolines. For the older set, there is a Teens Club that offers foosball, Xbox and other games. A movie screening room—complete with classic theatre snacks—is available for a three-hour rental. There is a large fitness center, and guests can play golf at a nearby 18-hole Jack



Nicklaus-designed course. While we typically like to explore Cabo’s dining scene, at Chileno we had a hard time tearing ourselves away from Comal, the resort’s open-air restaurant, which boasts a large circular fire pit, perfectly positioned for sunsets. Cuisine is a blend of Mexican and Latin American-inspired dishes, accented by farm-fresh produce. We stayed with local fresh fish entrées (excellent), ordering meat only once with the signature “Chileno Grill” entree; a hibachi filled with seafood, ribeye steak and grilled veggies is placed on the table. We ventured off campus only once to go to Esperanza’s open-air eatery, Cocina del Mar. The best tables are out on the rocks (reserve in advance) above the waves. I ordered one of the best fish dishes I’ve ever had: a salt-crusted Totoaba with confit tomato, onion, corn and kale. The coup de grace: a perfectly cooked banana soufflé. On our final day, we lunched at Chileno’s poolside grill, TnT (short for tacos and tequila). We were fully immersed in tasty shrimp tacos and a crisp yellowtail salad when we saw a whale and her baby breaching on the horizon. They jumped up out of the water more than a dozen times. It was the perfect bookend to a magical getaway. I hope to return to Chileno someday with husband—and kids. For more go to chilenobay.aubergeresorts.com. Rooms from $675; villas from $1275. ■

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kids camps

kids camps & summer programs

&

S U M M E R

P R O G R A M S

Camp

Type

Gender

Ages

Location

Buckley School

Sports, Various

M/F

Grades K-8

Sherman Oaks

Camp Funtime Various M/F Ages 3-13 Encino Camp Helping Hands

Various

M/F

Ages 6-14

Northridge, Thousand Oaks

Camp Kinneret Various M/F Grades K-12 Agoura Hills Camp Los Encinos Enrichment M/F Grades 1-6 Encino Camp Summertime Various M/F Ages 4-14 Agoura Hills

Campbell Hall School

Creative Arts, Sports, Various

M/F

Grades K-9

Studio City

De Toledo High School Various M/F Grades 6-9 West Hills Kids Like Me Camps

Special Needs, Autism Spectrum Disorder and other Developmental Challenges M/F Ages 3-21 Culver City, Sherman Oaks

Los Angeles Ballet Academy

Dance

M/F

Ages 8-18

Encino

Mad Science Camp

Science

M/F

Ages 6-12

Van Nuys

Notre Dame Sports Camp Sports, Various M/F Ages 6+ Sherman Oaks Notre Dame Summer Knights Various M/F Ages 6+ Sherman Oaks Rustic Pathways

Travel, Community Service

M/F

Grades 9-12

Worldwide

Saken Sports Camp

Sports, Various

M/F

Ages 4-14

Los Angeles

Second City Improv Camp Comedy M/F Ages 8-18 Hollywood STEM3 Academy Various M/F Grades 3-12 Culver City/Valley Glen Steve and Kate’s Camp

Various

M/F

Ages 4-12

Altadena/Los Angeles/Valley Village

Stratford Schools

Various

M/F

Grades K-8

Altadena/Los Angeles

Summer at Viewpoint Various M/F Grades K-12 Calabasas Summer S.M.A.R.T.S. Academic Program Academic M/F Grades 1-12 Encino WeVillage Summer Camp

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VENTURA BLVD | APRIL 2018

Various

M/F

Ages 5-12

Sherman Oaks


field trips

arts

sports

academics

kids camps & summer programs

Specialties Website Phone Swimming, basketball, soccer, robotics, science, art and dance

X X X

buckley.org/summercamp

818-783-1610

Swimming, Art, Rock Wall, Archery, Dance, Sports, Science, Drama, Music, Gymnastics, Nature, Karate, Yoga, GaGa

X X X X

campfuntime.org

818-789-8405

Service-learning field trips and activities

X X X X

camphelpinghands.com

805-244-5071

X X X

www.campkinneret.com

818-706-8255

X X X X

losencinosschool.org/summercamp

818-990-1006

Swimming, Active Play, Creative Play, Arts & Nature, Adventure, Special Events Music, art, dance, sports, technology, science, robotics, enrichment, field trips and more

Sports, swimming, boating, fishing, arts and crafts, Nature and Reptile Center, Marine Science live animal touch tank, Rock Climbing Wall, Zip Line, Archery, Go Karts, Horseback Riding, Dunk Tank, Water Slides, Special Theme Days

X X X campsummertime.com

818-706-7335

Creative arts, sports, dance, robotics, chess and cheer, STEM/STEAM

X X X

campbellhall.org/summer

818-505-2415

Academic courses, skills-based enrichment courses, camp eco-biotics, all level sports

X X X

dths.org

818-348-0048

kidslikemela.org

818-778-7136

X

laballet.com

818-382-2500

Interactive and hands-on science activities

X

madscience.org

818-909-6777

4 x 1 Week Day camps and Advanced Sports Camps (baseball, basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, beach volleyball, water polo)

X X X X

NDHS.org/SportsCamps

818-933-3661

Academic Courses (advancement & remediation), Enrichment Courses, and Sports Camps

X X X X

NDHS.org/SummerKnights

818-933-3677

Travel and service programs in more than 20 countries

X X X X

rusticpathways.com

800-321-4354

sakensportscamp.com

310-266-7168

Social skills, recreational programs, language development and teen travel

X X X

Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, Conditioning for dance

Sports, themed days, water park day

X

Improv, sketch comedy, musical improv X secondcity.com/classes/hollywood/ summer-comedy-camps/ 323-464-8542 Game Design, Robotics, Coding, Cybersecurity and Crytography, and 3D Design and Printing

X

Sports, music, games, fashion and more



X X

stem3academy.org

818-778-7136

steveandkatescamp.com/

323-205-2308

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) curriculum

X X X X

StratfordSchools.com/summer-camps

323-962-3075

Day camps, field trips, science, robotics, technology, sports, music and visual/performing arts

X X X X

viewpoint.org/summer

818-591-6597

Specialized curriculum for students with language-based learning differences; Open to Westmark and non-Westmark students

X

westmarkschool.org

818-986-5045

Crafts, art projects, games, and more

X X X X

wevillage.com

818-233-8218

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kids camps & summer programs

GRADESCampers K-6 GRADES 7-9 CIT Program

CAMP HOURS (SUMMER): 8:45 - 3:15 (FREE extended care 8-4) Seven Weekly Sessions Begin June 18, 2018 REGISTER ONLINE: www.losencinosschool.org/camp or call (818) 990-1006

• Sports • Science • Arts & Crafts • Cooking • Drone Flying

• Moviemaking • Robotics • Yoga • Field Trips • and so much more!!

Make summer sensational

!

Los Encinos School • 17100 Ventura Blvd. • Encino, CA 91316 • (818) 990-1006 48 VENTURA BLVD | APRIL 2018 www.LosEncinosSchool.org/camp • camp@losencinosschool.org


2018-2019 SCHOOL YEAR

kids camps & summer programs

SPRING OPEN HOUSE

Sunday, April 22 11 AM - 1 PM SUMMER DAY CAMP

JUNE 18 - AUGUST 10

RSVP NOW:

westmarkschool.org/OpenHouseRSVP

Summer at

SUMMER ACADEMIC PROGRAM

JUNE 25- JULY 20

Summer S M A RTS 2018

• • • • •

Strategies Math Active Learning Reading & Writing Technology Skills for Success Ages 3-13 | 25+ Activities | Field Trips | Extended Care

Grades 1-12 Academic Skills Classes Reading Programs Electives

OPEN HOUSES



March 11, April 15, May 6 | 1-4pm

818.789.8405 | www.campfuntime.org

APRIL 2018 | VENTURA BLVD 49 818.986.5045 | westmarkschool.org

©2018 Westmark School. All Rights Reserved.


kids camps & summer programs

KINGERGARTEN THROUGH TWELFTH GRADE Join us for a memorable summer filled with...

new adventures and lasting friendships!

Register Online Today! Mobile Device Compatible! www.viewpoint.org/summer 818-591-6591

DAY CAMPS - SPORTS CAMPS - ACADEMIC PROGRAMS - FOR CREDIT CLASSES

ALL NEW! Discover where the Extraordinary begins Stratford School infuses its STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) curriculum into an innovative and enriching summer camp experience for children in Preschool through Middle School.

Camp Sessions: June 25 – August 10 Explore Summer@Stratford StratfordSchools.com/summer-camp Los Angeles Campus 1200 N. Cahuenga Blvd. (323) 962-3075

Altadena Campus 2046 Allen Avenue (626) 794-1000

We deliver the extraordinary.

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WE S LS

S

GE

O

LE

Accrediting Commission for Schools

O

50

ASSOCIAT I

OF

SCH

Preschool State License: 198018875, 198018949. Enrollment in Preschool at the new campus is subject to obtaining a state license. Copyright © 2018 Stratford Schools, Inc.

RN

ON

Mission Viejo | West Los Angeles (Opening Fall 2018)

TE

Our other Southern California campuses AND CO

L

Summer @Stratford


kids camps & summer programs

VenturaBLVD-SP-2018.qxp_VenturaBLVD 2/12/18 10:12 AM Page 1

SUMMER PROGRAMS at CA M P B E L L H A L L

campbellhall.org/summer Register Now!

GR ADES K-9

CR E AT IVE ARTS ACADE M Y



J UN E 11 – AUG UST 3

plus

S PRIN G BREAK CA MPS

CHA MPI ON SHIP + E LIT E SP O RTS CA MP S

MARCH 26 – A PRIL 6

STE AM P ROGR AMS

DAN CE + M O RE !

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kids camps & summer programs

Classic summer FUN paired with futuristic tinkering in our high-tech MakerSpace and organic garden

CAMP e

c

o botics FOR STUDENTS ENTERING

GRADES 6-9

PLAY. INVENT. EXPLORE.

Register by April 15 for $100 off! dTHS.org/summer2018

JUNE 19-JULY 19

For middle school and high school students from any school. Also offering: For students entering grades 9-12

For students entering grades 8-12

For students entering grades 6-12

SUMMER SCHOOL

SUMMER SPARK

SUMMER SPORTS

Academic courses and lab sciences for acceleration or remediation

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VENTURA BLVD | APRIL 2018

Skills-based enrichment courses for leadership, math, and studying

All levels & co-ed—strengthen your game

22622 Vanowent Street West Hills, CA 91307 818-348-0048 | dTHS.org


Camping it Forward At a unique summer camp, kids learn the value of volunteering—giving back to their community and making memories to last a lifetime. WRITTEN BY RACHEL HELLER ZAIMONT

Meredith Madnick’s daughter, Shea, was 6 years old when the mom had a jarring epiphany. “We were living an affluent lifestyle and everything was picture-perfect. I realized



that as a result, she was growing up spoiled,” Meredith recalls. “I felt like Shea could benefit greatly from service to the community.” She searched for a volunteering program, but there were few options available for children so young. So she decided to create one. In 2011, the Northridge mom founded Camp Helping Hands, a summer camp centered around community service. Geared for ages 6 to 14, the innovative day camp now serves about 130 campers per week at locations in Northridge and Thousand Oaks. Each summer, the programming reflects a theme: “Serving what serves us” will be this year’s focus, split into specific weekly topics. Meredith partners with local organizations to immerse kids in a variety of ways to volunteer. During Earth Week, campers will learn about the environment and conservation, tending a neighborhood garden with the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust and getting a taste of nutritious food with Imperfect Produce. People Week will bring campers face to face with firefighters, first responders and soldiers, as kids tour a fire station and work with the nonprofit For the Troops. Animal Week’s field trips will include

experiential learning with Guide Dogs of America and therapy horses. Kids do participate in traditional camp pastimes like swimming, sports and games, but the giving theme is woven into most of the activities. A crafting session, for example, might involve children making items for donation. Kids have made blankets for My Stuff Bags, dog biscuits for puppies at the shelter and tissue cozies for local senior centers. “Campers may sew one day, paint the next and then cook the following week,” Meredith explains. “It’s fantastic for families who want a camp that inspires kids to be empathetic and compassionate, while also learning about new topics and trying new activities,” says Adina Nack of Thousand Oaks, whose daughter, Hana, 13, has attended since she was 8. She also likes that the camp empowers her daughter to “engage with real-world civic issues.” As a mother, Meredith is grateful she could create the opportunity she wanted for her daughter. “After all, children have to keep busy during the summer,” she says. “Why not put them somewhere you can feel good about?” ■

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MOMENT <your>

CREATE

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818.995.5799 • PRESENCEFINEPAPER.COM • HELLO@PRESENCEFINEPAPER.COM 13812 VENTURA BOULEVARD • SHERMAN OAKS • CALIFORNIA 91423

VENTURA BLVD | APRIL 2018


Meet 10 extraordinary teenagers who are striving for excellence—and achieving it—in areas ranging from technology to philanthropy. For each one of this year’s esteemed Top Teens, ironclad drive and awe-inspiring passion are key components of their DNA and critical to their success. PHOTOGRAPHED BY MONICA OROZCO ILLUSTRATED BY CHRISTINE GEORGIADES

PRESENTED BY



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(previous page)

Michael Wilson, 17

Madison Stein, 14

Chaminade High School

Notre Dame High School

Football Player; nationally ranked receiver

Philanthropist; developing innovative ways to inspire youth to give back

Proudest Accomplishment Receiving a scholarship offer, committing and being admitted into Stanford University.

Proudest Accomplishment At 7 years old, I became a founding member of LemonAID Warriors, a nonprofit created to give youth a platform to make social good a part of their social lives. I recently took over as President and have already expanded our reach by starting the first LemonAID Warriors School Club and creating curriculum to share with schools nationwide.

Why? I set this goal at the age of 10 and to achieve this dream—being admitted into one of the most prestigious schools in the world—tells me I can accomplish anything I set my mind to. What was the biggest challenge? The hard work that went into it was draining. Sometimes you wanted to give up and not study for a test, not go work out, not watch film, etc. But something deep down never let me quit, never let me cheat the grind and process. Who inspires you? My three brothers inspire me to become a better person, leader and athlete/student. I hope I am as good of a brother as they are to me. What drives you? Seeing my parents work so hard every day inspires me. I work hard because I never want to let them down. They’ve sacrificed so much for me, so it’s only right for me to make those sacrifices pay off. Person you feel grateful for? I am grateful for my trainer, Jerome Riley, because he has pushed me to be the best. He helped craft my game and has taught me to become a better, more confident man. How do you stay focused? By surrounding myself with people who are hungry for success—like me.

Second proudest accomplishment? Last year, my friend and I founded an organization called Believe Year Round. It is a 100% youth-run organization that partners with schools and businesses to collect books, shoes and school supplies for underprivileged communities. We recently collected over 6,500 books to donate to families at LA Family Housing. What drives you? Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve had internal motivation. I have always been one to go out and get things done. Adults often assume that age determines our capability, and I want to prove them wrong. How do you stay focused? I’ve always felt like I lived in a bubble, sheltered from the harsh realities of the real world. Yet I know that there are so many people in the world who don’t have the same opportunities as I do.




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Ryan Iwata, 17 North Hollywood High High Achiever; headed to Bucknell University Proudest Accomplishment? My acceptance to the LA Posse Foundation as a scholar. [The foundation identifies public high school students who have extraordinary academic and leadership potential, matches them to a college and provides a full-tuition scholarship.] There were multiple interviews and applications. Who inspires you? [Philanthropist and LA native] Linda Duttenhaver, who has provided so many people with life-altering experiences, thanks to her belief in the “pay it forward” ideology. Person you feel grateful for? My mother who, through ups and downs in my life, has always been there to support me. Biggest challenge you’ve faced? Maintaining a balanced life as president of ASB [on-campus leadership group], as coordinator of the Colfax Tutoring Club and being part of Cross Country/ Track & Field for all four years. Pivotal moment in your life? My two-week expedition to Kenya to study elephants. The experience made me appreciate the beauty of our planet and why we need to work to protect it. That’s why I’m pursuing environmental engineering, so that I can be a part of the changes we make. We need to be able to coexist with our environment.

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Lily Rowe, 16 Campbell Hall School All-Around Doer Proudest Accomplishment Creating Cleanup Encino, a community-wide litter pickup event that the Encino Chamber of Commerce agreed to co-sponsor with me. I had to generate volunteers and get local schools involved and get sponsors like the McDonald’s in Encino. What inspired you to create the Cleanup? Litter isn’t only an eyesore, it can also clog storm-water drains and cause flooding, and it can travel through drains and pollute our ocean. Second proudest accomplishment? Last summer I had two jobs. I worked at Brandy Melville in the mall at Westfield Topanga and at Campbell Hall’s volleyball camp. Often I worked both jobs on the same day. Who or what inspires you? My parents. My mom was the first in her family to graduate college. My dad grew up on a farm and went on to work in media in NY and LA. What drives you? Why do you work so hard? I’ve been given a lot of advantages and want to use those to make a difference. Person you feel grateful for? My grandma. Though she lives in Minnesota, she always shows great interest in whatever I’m doing. What do you do for fun? Volleyball tournaments. I compete on Campbell Hall’s varsity volleyball team and the Sunshine 17 Elite club team.



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Matthew Navarro, 18 Viewpoint School Nonprofit Founder; National Hispanic Merit Scholar

Proudest Accomplishment My nonprofit, Pass It On 4 Eyesight. It’s collected $228,250 worth of used prescription eyewear to be recycled and repurposed for those who can’t afford it. When I started this in middle school, I had no clue I’d get this far, especially considering that I was kind of just figuring it out on my own. Other endeavors? I volunteer at Hope Gardens, a nonprofit organization supporting homeless women and children. Last year, I helped coordinate a Mother’s Day photo shoot for nearly 70 families at the center. I also photographed their graduation ceremony and delivered the pictures to each graduate as a gift.

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What makes you so philanthropic? I think that this drive to give back isn’t something that is unique to my character or experience, but it is something that exists within everyone. The key is to build the bridges that awaken the drive. I’m just fortunate in that I discovered this at an early stage in my life. What’s next? I don’t know yet where I’ll be going to college next year, but I want to study physics. What do you do for fun? I really love to cook. It’s what I do to relax. I’m really into fermentation right now.


Eva Yguico, 17 UCLA Passionate Learner; graduates ULCA in May; nationally ranked competitive Alpine skier OK to call you a “brainiac?” I prefer to be called a thinker or learner. When I was younger, I had a normal progression, getting A’s and B’s. Then at one point I decided to really throw myself into learning. I figure why should I waste anyone’s time? Pivotal moment in your life? When I was 13 years old, I was temporarily banned from skiing at my home mountain, Mammoth. So, in a fit of rage—and not having anything better to do—I decided to take a test that might get me into college [It did]. Who inspires you? Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Simone de Beauvoir, Bertrand Russell, David Foster Wallace. I really like people who are brilliant and still manage (or at least try) to be decent. What drives you? Time. I want to spend mine well. Person you feel grateful for? Anyone who puts up with me long enough to make me notice the world outside myself. My grandfather especially fits that bill. What’s next? Competing in the USCSSA Nationals to be held at Lake Placid in March. I’ll represent UCLA as the lone Alpine ski racer.



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Darrion Sellman, 13 Opportunities for Learning Charter School Ballet Dancer

Proudest Accomplishment? Being invited to become a part of the Royal Ballet School International Scholars Programme. It accepts no more than 10 students worldwide per academic year to come to London. I am currently the only male American dancer participating. Second proudest accomplishment? Winning a bronze medal in the Junior Men’s division in the 2017 Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) Finals held in New York. What drives you? I love the challenge of ballet—the precision and detail of it. It’s the fine art of making something that is difficult look easy and beautiful. What are you grateful for? My mom. She’s been there with me every step of the way. And for my training at Los Angeles Ballet Academy. It has opened up doors I never thought possible. Aspirations? To become a principal dancer with the Royal Ballet. Biggest challenge you’ve faced? I started dance at 6, and I was teased a lot. No one wanted to eat with me at lunch, and other boys wouldn’t let me play sports with them because I wasn’t “athletic.” At one point, I had to make a decision. I could let these kids take my dream away or I could follow it. I think I made the right choice.

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Sophia Latessa, 17 Campbell Hall School Tech Entrepreneur; developed and sold her first app, MemeStream, at age 15



Who or what inspires you? Changemakers—individuals who devote their energy and make it their mission to improve the lives of others. To what do you attribute your success, thus far? Campbell Hall. As a student, I’m able to take risks, push boundaries and make my mark in the field of technology. From my dean to all of my teachers, I have an incredible support system that has made the

impossible, possible. Something most people don’t know about you? Living in a culturally rich environment at home, I am closely connected to my Mexican heritage. My passion for literature, combined with my cultural background, has inspired me to study Mexican contemporary authors. I’m also currently studying Japanese, with the determination to be trilingual.

How do you stay focused? I am solution-driven. I’m not deterred by failure, but rather failure is a motivator that keeps me driven. What else should we know about you? I am the daughter of a Mexican immigrant. It’s important to me that I represent dreamers in the DACA program. I am a good representation of why this legislation is so important.

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Chloe Kuelbs, 17 Viewpoint School Engineer; award-winning robot designer

Proudest Accomplishment Starting my school’s “Eco-friendly Club” and growing it into a changemaking Environmental Sustainability Council that now includes sixth through 12th graders.

Biggest challenge you’ve faced? Walking onto the shop floor as a Controls Engineering Intern at an aerospace company this past summer—as the youngest person there with A LOT to learn.

Second proudest accomplishment? Winning the Vex Robotics Excellence Award at the 2016 Clash in the Canyon Robotics Competition with my novice, all-girl team.

To what or whom do you attribute your success, thus far? My parents. They are supportive, but have allowed me to blaze my own path, make mistakes and discover aspirations that are truly my own.

Who or what inspires you? My aunt Haifaa Al-Mansour, the first female Saudi filmmaker. She fights cultural barriers to create great films that examine oppression of women and other injustices. Person you feel grateful for? Viewpoint robotics instructor and physics teacher, Mr. Rush, and science teacher, Mr. Yates—both dedicated mentors who’ve taught me about engineering and sustainability.

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Pivotal moment in your life? Sophomore year, I attended a science conference at Stanford. Watching students present inventions for aiding amputees and cleaning drinking water inspired me to start inventing.


Aron Saliman, 18 Milken Community Schools Writer; three-time gold medal recipient from Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

Proudest Accomplishment? Attending the Iowa Young Writers’ Studio at The University of Iowa [considered the most prestigious writing program for high school students in the country]. I was the first person from Milken to ever get in. Through that experience, I grew as a writer and became more empathetic and mature. Biggest challenge while attending? Allowing myself to jump feet first, not hesitating because I feared not being a good enough writer or the new social environment. Second proudest accomplishment? Running my school’s literary magazine as editor in chief. Who or what inspires you? Nature and its grandeur, its beauty. I’m reminded of how big this world is and how much I still have to experience. Aspirations? Working for a nonprofit that educates about climate change. One of the biggest problems facing environmental groups is the public’s general lack of knowledge, which leads to apathy. Writing builds empathy like no other method of communication. I believe that if I can communicate effectively the plight of our Earth, I’ll be able to help galvanize action that will pressure leaders to focus more time, money and energy on the fight for a healthy planet. ■



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14015 VENTURA BLVD SHERMAN OAKS

13539 VENTURA BLVD SHERMAN OAKS

818-301-4300

818-906-7427

AARON ROBINS VETERAN LA RESTAURATEUR AND EXECUTIVE CHEF OWNER OF SOCA & BONEYARD BISTRO


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YES, PLEASE

At the new Wood & Water—expect fused flavors that you’ve never experienced, and that goes for cocktails too. More on page 68...


the sauce

Global Fusion

A father and son team combines talents to open the globally inspired Wood & Water WRITTEN BY JOSHUA LURIE

Valley dining shifted into high gear with the opening of restaurants like The Bellwether, Scratch|Bar & Kitchen and SOCA, spread out along the Boulevard. The next wave seems to be centered on Sherman Oaks, with Bluebird Brasserie and Petit Trois scheduled to open early this year. In the meantime, diners can check out the globally inspired Wood & Water, which opened in March. The eatery, the latest concept from longtime Conejo Valley restaurateur Moez Megji and son Karim features a seasonal, sustainable, international menu that is share-friendly and tilts more toward the sea. Moez, who grew up in Kenya, has lived around the world, soaking up culinary influences along the way. The self-taught chef created restaurants like Fins Creekside in Calabasas, Zin Bistro Americana in Westlake Village and The Gallery in Westlake Village. With Wood & Water, Moez continues to make Fins fan favorites like Cajun gumbo and bouillabaisse, plus some popular dishes from The Gallery. New plates are the result of his collaboration with Karim, a chef who has been contributing to the family business since age 4, when he would fold napkins at Fins for a dime apiece. Karim describes the concept as “New American, which kind of means we can do anything.” Father and son are Indian-American, but they deftly blend elements from many cuisines. For instance, atypical surf and turf pairs shredded duck and seared scallops with potato pancake, blueberry and Cassis reduction. For a lamb sirloin set, Moez developed the marinade, and Karim contributed chorizo and ricotta ravioli, roasted bell pepper sauce and basil. Creativity extends to pastry chef Julie Kim’s desserts—and to cocktails. Instead of a classic cocktail, perhaps consider more unique drinks like the New Fashion, an Old Fashioned variation with bourbon, cherries marinated in brandy bourbon and cinnamon, orange bitters, and an orange wedge. Craft beer and wines lean heavily on California. Karim describes interiors as “industrial mid-century.” A framed patio leads to a dining room with tufted, brown leather booths, stone fireplace and sloped Brazilian teak roof. Karim envisions Wood & Water as a versatile neighborhood hangout, a place where diners can feel comfortable simply grabbing a drink and burger or enjoying a five-course anniversary dinner. His father says he is confident Wood & Water will catch on, concluding, “We’re a new kid on the block, but we’re not new.” ■ 13359 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, 805-573-1111

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Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just like home If home was perfectly decorated, the bar was fully stocked, and Mom was a better cook.

BAR I DINING ROOM I PATIO I PRIVATE ROOM (818) 855-1203 I 16120 Ventura Blvd. Encino, CA I davenportsrestaurant.com


the sauce WILD & FREE 4550 Van Nuys Blvd, Sherman Oaks | eatwildandfree.com

winner!

Valley newcomer Wild & Free offers free range, organic chicken and farm-totable side dishes in a casual environment. Our culinary crew concurred: their chicken tender reigns supreme.   M: It tastes pretty good. I like the regular chicken flavor. I would give it a 10 with ketchup.  B: It has what I like ... a crunch with good flavor and soft chicken. I could eat two of these.  J: Nice even brown coloring. A little too much chicken for me. I like more fried breading, but the flavor is really good.   SCORE: 8.6 

Love Me Tender Whether you call ‘em tenders, fingers or strips, kids are always on the hunt for tasty, breaded, deep-fried chicken. We asked a few 7-year-olds to weigh in on tenders from three local eateries.  

FAT SAL’S 16901 Ventura Boulevard, Encino | fatsalsdeli.com Fat Sal’s in Encino celebrates diner-food decadence with a modern twist. Their version uses a generous amount of chicken, making it the plumpest of the pack. M: It looks like a big chicken nugget. I like it with their barbecue sauce because it’s sweet and tangy. B: Yummy flavor and good seasoning. I don’t like to dip my tenders into anything, and this one definitely doesn’t need a sauce.   J: The chicken is really moist, and this one is more meaty. It tastes even better when I dip it in the ranch dressing.  

WRITTEN BY HEATHER DAVID

SCORE: 8 

JERRY’S DELI 12655 Ventura Boulevard, Studio City | jerrysdeli.com This Studio City institution has been serving locals since the 70s. Their take on the tender features lots of fried breading goodness with minimal meat.  M: This one is so-so. It’s better with ketchup.   B: Very crusty, and it doesn’t look like it has much chicken. Tastes really salty and not much meat. J: A lot of crunchiness, and that’s what I like most. Tastes really good. SCORE: 6.5

PANEL: JORDAN BARUH, BENJAMIN LIEBERMAN, MADISON NOVACK Our judges are decked out courtesy of Grey and Ray—a new kids’ clothing line created by two local moms.

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T R A D I T I O N A L J A PA N E S E C U I S I N E

LUNCH SPECIALS STARTING AT $6.95  HAPPY HOUR 5-7PM

747-998-5244 SUSHISAZANAMI.COM 12918 RIVERSIDE DRIVE SHERMAN OAKS

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T H E D E S T I N AT I O N F O R VA L L E Y F O O D I E S

S I G N U P & E AT W E L L O U RV E N T U R A B LV D.C O M



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the sauce

Sweet Art

Inspired by her favorite artists, VB food stylist, Kara Mickelson, designs some stunning, picturesque cakes. Here she shares some of the baking and icing “how-to”, if you dare... PRODUCED, STYLED & PHOTOGRAPHED BY KARA MICKELSON

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SCULPTURED BUTTERFLY APPLE CAKE Fondant cake and insects on “painted” tiles INSPIRATION: Surrealist Vladimir Kush’s Butterfly Apple painting TECHNIQUE: Custom cake sculpturing and painting HOW TO DO IT: To recreate an artist’s work, source any accent props that will help create the visual story. For this project, adding the knife and “painting” two surface tiles with colored frosting helped set the scene. Make two copies of what you’d like to create—one for reference and another to make a pattern and use as a guide. Make a printout that is the same size as the cake you want to create. Create cake layers and secure pieces together with buttercream in order to get the right size base to carve. Refrigerate to set frosting. Once the cake is chilled, use a paring knife to hand carve the butterfly apple. Toothpicks can help set the shape before carving. Use your fingers to help form the cake shape. Pound cake will be easy to mold with light pressure. Crumb coat the cake with buttercream and chill to set. Add colored fondant and food coloring gels to get the correct shade for the apple exterior. Roll out fondant or marzipan to ¼ inch or slightly less for the front of the apple. Marzipan is a little sticky and harder to work with than fondant, but it has a nice almond flavor. Whether you use that or a mix of product (fondant/marzipan), the covering should be thin and pliable enough to drape over the cake but thick enough not to tear. Mold and smooth round shapes with clean hands and trim excess product as needed with culinary scissors or a paring knife. Use a cake smoother to work out bubbles or imperfections. Add any accent lines for the butterfly wings with an edible sketch pen. Use fondant to create the butterfly body, insects and floral cake stems for the butterfly antennas, and the feelers on the caterpillar and fly legs. Color stems with black edible ink before using. Add edible marker and cake paint to add dimension to fondant pieces and create a painted look. Secure accent pieces with edible glue, royal icing or frosting.

HEART-SHAPED CAKE WITH RED MIRROR GLAZE Colored frosting on canvas with iced sugar cookies and royal icing INSPIRATION: Surrealist Joan Miró’s Ballerina II painting TECHNIQUE: Mirror Glazing HOW TO DO IT: Savour Chocolate & Patisserie School on YouTube has great video tutorials. One of them focuses on pastry chef Kirsten Tibballs’ recipe for marble glaze. For this heart cake, I eliminated the other colors and only used red. Order hard-to-find items online such as sheet gelatin, neutral glaze (if using), high-quality coverture white chocolate, glucose and flexible silicon mold. SUCCESS TIPS: • Be mindful of temperatures. Gelatin’s setting power will diminish if overheated (above 140º). Use the type of gelatin suggested in the recipe. • Plan to have extra glaze to cover the whole, completely smooth cake. • The glaze temp should be between 95º and 98º.

SUCCESS TIPS: • Use a cake with a tender but dense crumb, such as pound cake. It is easier to manage and shape. • Fondant cakes can be refrigerated, although some fondant is temperamental and will get sticky or sweat once removed. Just let the condensation dry a bit before handling.



• A mousse-base cake or cake covered with marzipan or fondant works best for shaped cakes. • Freeze cake before glazing. • Set up pouring station. Don’t use a grate or cooling rack if you don’t have any support under your cake.

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“CONCENTRATE ON THE GOOD, NOT THE BAD. WE MUST NOT LOSE FAITH IN HUMANITY BECAUSE OF SOME ROTTEN APPLES IN THE WORLD.” — SIDONIA LAX

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Remember For Us To commemorate this month’s Holocaust Remembrance Day, we highlight the stories of three Holocaust survivors living here in the Valley. As the last generation of survivors, they are committed to making sure the atrocities are not forgotten by future generations. WRITTEN BY RACHEL HELLER ZAIMONT | PHOTOGRAPHED BY MICHAEL BECKER

By the time she was 11 years old, Dorothy Greenstein had lost more than most of us can imagine: her home, her winter clothes and shoes, her hopes of learning to play the piano—and finally, her parents and brother, all killed at Treblinka, the infamous Nazi death camp. Dorothy spent her preteen years as a fugitive in the Germanoccupied Polish countryside, hiding in infested cellars and barns to evade Nazi dogs trained to sniff out Jewish escapees. The youngest of 10 siblings, she saw her family torn apart by prejudice, violence and war. But there are some things Dorothy held onto through the Holocaust. To this day, at her core she is a moral woman—and she has a positive outlook. When the 87-year-old tells her story to young audiences now, she implores children never to use the word “hate.” After everything she has lived through, she tries to “always be optimistic, never pessimistic.” “My father said, ‘You can always find something good about a person,’” recalls the spritely Valley Village great-grandmother. As one of the last generation of Holocaust survivors, Dorothy feels a responsibility to educate the younger generation and pass on lessons she has gleaned from her experiences. Many other survivors—a large number of whom live in the Valley—share this sentiment. Survivors view Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day on April 11, as an opportunity to share the stories of aging Holocaust survivors firsthand. “Survivors are dying out,” says Sidonia Lax, 90, a survivor and prolific speaker who lives in Sherman Oaks. “I believe you have to touch before you can teach, so that is my mission.” For the past 10 years, Sidonia has participated in March of the Living, sharing her story with audiences from around the world at Holocaust sites in Poland. At Auschwitz, she showed astonished students the bunk bed where she used to sleep. “When I face teenagers



who know nothing about the Holocaust and are thirsty to learn, I realize what a great gift I can give them,” she says. “They lean to me like a plant toward light and I share my experiences with them.” Sidonia was born in 1927 in Przemysl, Poland, the privileged only child of well-to-do parents. Despite growing up with maids and a governess, she and her family lived in squalor in the Jewish ghetto after the war started. In a forced labor roundup, the Nazis conscripted her to break rocks for construction. Fourteen-year-old Sidonia was ashamed of the bulky muscles she built with her sledgehammer, but later on her strength saved her life. Her parents and neighbors dug a bunker underground where they hid for three months, unable to bathe or change clothes. Her mother plotted an escape from the ghetto, but she was caught and taken away. A short time later, her father heard a rumor that someone had smuggled apples into the ghetto. Determined to get one for his malnourished daughter, he left the bunker. He, too, never came back. “I lost my Daddy because of an apple,” Sidonia recounts. Eventually captured and jailed, Sidonia was packed onto a cattle car and sent to a series of labor and concentration camps. She arrived at Auschwitz in 1944, where her head was shaved and she was tattooed on her left forearm. The numbers are still visible today. Weeks later, still strong from her boulder-smashing job, she was selected to aid the German war effort. She helped build BergenBelsen and then worked in an ammunition factory, filling grenade shells. But as Allied forces closed in, she and the other prisoners were evacuated by train. The train—assumed to be carrying ammunition— was bombed. Her clothes on fire, Sidonia jumped from the burning car and rolled to safety in the grass. The war ended two days later, but Sidonia had no one to return

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“THE HOLOCAUST IS SOMETHING YOU CANNOT EXPLAIN. TALKING BRINGS BACK MEMORIES OF MISERY YOU WANT TO FORGET.” — ABE TEITMAN

home to. In time she made her way to an uncle in Los Angeles, where she finished her education, worked as a medical lab technician and started a family. She now speaks about the Holocaust to politicians, veterans and students. “When you listen to a survivor, you become a survivor and you can teach the next generation,” she says. Abe Teitman believes in the same principle. The Tarzana resident was 6 when the Nazis arrived in his hometown of Lodz, Poland. As a child, he remembers wearing the mandatory gold star on his arm and seeing sacred torah parchment dyed and fashioned into clothing. Abe’s parents fled the ghetto and took him on the run. They hid in the forest, eating leaves and grass. They sheltered in spare rooms and cellars. One day his father disappeared. He and his pregnant mother were forced to keep moving alone. “We had no idea where we would be from one day to the next,” he recalls. The pair eventually arrived at the Russian border, where hundreds of Jewish refugees were camped out, hoping to evade the advancing Nazis. After a week the border was opened, and refugees streamed into Russia. But there was no relief for Abe and his mother. The duo wandered from village to village, traveling as far as Uzbekistan before they settled. There, Abe’s mother gave birth to a baby girl and died of typhus two months later. Sent to a dangerous orphanage, Abe ran away and hitchhiked to Samarkand. He was 8 years old, starving and entirely alone. A Jewish stranger took him in and ushered him into a network of foster homes that sustained him through the end of the war. In 1948, Abe was sent to Israel with other orphaned children. Miraculously, he reunited with

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his little sister. After marrying and moving to the U.S., Abe became a history teacher. Last year, at age 83, he finally had his bar mitzvah at Encino’s Nachshon Minyan congregation—finishing a chapter interrupted by the war seven decades earlier. “The Holocaust is something you cannot explain,” says Abe. “Talking brings back memories of misery you want to forget.” But when he told his story to an audience of teenagers at Nachshon Minyan, he found the words pouring out. “It helped them. It opens up their vision to learn what went on. It’s not easy to talk about, but they won’t know if I don’t tell them.” Dorothy speaks for that very same reason. “There are too many Holocaust deniers; kids need to hear it from the horse’s mouth,” she says. She has donated her time to the Museum of Tolerance and the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust—in addition to her 31-year career teaching grade school students at Emek Hebrew Academy in Sherman Oaks. Education holds special importance for Dorothy. When the German army swept into her hometown of Otwock, Poland, they decreed that Jewish children could no longer attend school. But Dorothy was a quick study and attributes her survival to her language skills and plucky bravery—she spoke perfect Polish (along with the Yiddish spoken at home) and snuck out of the ghetto to buy her family food right under the Nazis’ noses. When she speaks to children now, “Kids are amazed that I was so smart when I was their age,” she says. “I tell them they can also use


“THERE ARE TOO MANY HOLOCAUST DENIERS; KIDS NEED TO HEAR IT FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH.” — DOROTHY GREENSTEIN



PHOTOGRAPHED BY PIXIE VISION

their brains. I leave them feeling good and capable. They too can study, they can learn, they can remember things.” Keeping the memory of the Holocaust alive is Dorothy’s greatest wish for teens. But she also wants them to grow up to be kind people. “I teach them to be courteous and do good things—to spread goodness all over. You’re responsible for your deeds.” Sidonia, too, lives by principles forged during the Holocaust: Don’t waste food. Fight racism and reject discrimination. Enthusiasm and optimism can overcome any obstacle. And finally, “Concentrate on the good, not the bad,” the great-grandmother says. “We must not lose faith in humanity because of some rotten apples in the world.” ■

A Lesson for the Ages An innovative program is aimed at facilitating communication about the Holocaust between young and old. When 13-year-old Emma Blankstein met Dorothy Greenstein at a Holocaust Remembrance Day event at her synagogue last year, she formed a “life-changing” connection with the 87-year-old survivor. “After listening to her story of how she survived one of the darkest times in our world’s history, I wanted to know more,” Emma recalls. “Dorothy is kind and generous—and funny—and we began meeting to talk about her life and my Jewish studies. I realized that my generation would be the last to have the opportunity to personally know a Holocaust survivor.” Emma wanted to share the moving experience with other kids her age. In honor of her bat mitzvah, the Oakwood School eighth grader partnered with the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust to expand an innovative program called L’Dough V’Dough, which gives students and survivors a chance to bond over the experience of baking challah together. After attending several L’Dough V’Dough events (the program’s name is a play on a Hebrew phrase meaning “from generation to generation”), Emma realized although kids were interested in hearing about the Holocaust, they weren’t always sure how to start a dialogue with survivors. So she created a box of conversation prompts to get the ball rolling: “What is a quote or phrase that you live by?” “What is your earliest childhood memory?” “Have you ever saved someone’s life, or has anyone saved yours?” “Being surrounded by survivors is breathtaking,” says the Sherman Oaks teen, who is working to bring L’Dough V’Dough to more schools and religious institutions in the Valley. “It’s a piece of history that you get to personally hear from a witness. It’s inspiring to know how resilient and hopeful they were.” And Emma is thankful for the encounter that started it all. “Dorothy always has a smile on her face. She has taught me so much.” APRIL 2018 | VENTURA BLVD

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HOME ON THE RANCH A family of four trades the vistas of the Hollywood Hills for an idyllic lifestyle in exclusive Fryman Canyon. WRITTEN BY SUSAN S. SPILLMAN PHOTOGRAPHED BY SHANE Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;DONNELL


K

ristine Paige and Adam Kamenstein had all but given up on moving from the Hollywood Hills to the Valley until a few years ago, when Adam visited a friend at a Studio City ranch-style home that she’d been renting. “I said if I could get this house, we’ll move,” recalls Adam, CEO of the food company IPS Snacks. Despite its pea-green exterior, grassy gully

of a front yard and dated scalloped moldings, the home, tucked at the end of a cul-de-sac, had everything the Kamensteins were looking for and more. That included proximity to their twins’ school, a classic kidney bean-shaped swimming pool and a flat, third-acre lot perfect for nerf gun fights, the family’s two dogs and the chickens that Adam had always wanted. The 3,000-foot structure had three bedrooms,

ARTISTIC TOUCHES In the family room, a vibrant abstract by Frank Stella and needlepoint throw pillows provide punches of color, while the dark grey Angela Adams rug is “good for hiding dogs’ and kids’ dirt,” says Kristine. Opposite: Animal print pillows and fun wallpaper personalize the kitchen.

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four baths and a guesthouse. Plus there was a detached studio that Kristine, a partner in the design firm, Jackson Paige Interiors, could use as her office. Add to that an old-fashion neighborhood where gaggles of kids can be seen riding bikes and playing basketball, and every Halloween there’s a block party featuring a taco truck and outdoor movie. So how did the family end up getting the


“WHEN I DESIGN, I WANT TO MAKE PEOPLE COME INSIDE THEIR HOUSE AND JUST BE SO HAPPY TO BE HOME.”



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“ITS IDYLLIC FOR THE KIDS.” 82

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house? When Adam made his casual quip about the property, the friend who’d been renting the home took note. Turns out that friend, Stephanie Nahai, was also their real estate agent. Stephanie reached out to the owners. They were willing to sell, and she brokered a deal. For the Kamensteins, it was a dream come true. “Its idyllic for the kids,” says Adam. “We literally have chain texts with parents asking, ‘Are they at your house now?’” When it came to the home’s aesthetic, Kristine took the same approach she uses with clients. “When I design, I want to make



people come inside their house and just be so happy to be home,” she says. The exteriors were more of a challenge. The front yard needed a total overhaul. With its low-pitched roof and narrow footprint, the house is set luxuriously back on the property, but the grass was lackluster due to mandatory water rationing. Also the brick walkway to the front door was awkwardly situated off to the side. Cheryl Kellough of Sage Garden Design was tasked with the facelift. She traded out the grass for a lush assortment of droughttolerant plants, including Lavenders,

Salvias, Iceberg Rosa, Sweet Myrtle, Lemon Geranium and Ceanothus (California Lilacs). A clever touch: adding intersecting gravel paths throughout the greenery so the twins, Kate and Van, 11, could still run through the front yard. The brick walkway was rerouted and extended, a pergola was added over the entrance area, and a fresh coat (actually several coats) of bright white paint sealed the transformation to storybook, picture-perfect. Inside, the home boasts a classic, open ranch floor plan and large windows that welcome in the outdoors. Kristine artfully

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blended the best of the era’s signature charm with a clean, contemporary look. The plentiful scalloped molding was removed, the honeycolored wood floors stained a rich espresso and the walls all bathed in shades of light grey, creating a bright and airy feel. The designer’s passion for unique light fixtures, playful pops of wallpaper and whimsical animal prints are evident throughout the home. “Animal prints are classic and chic,” says Kristine. “A subtle palette lends to a natural and timeless feel, while pairing louder animal prints together creates a fun and cohesive look.” Contemporary and antique furniture and accents also mingle throughout. Delicate glass French sconces, a leather, black sectional sofa and a starburst-patterned wool area rug by Angela Adams harmoniously

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cohabitate in the living room. Though wall space is limited, black and white photography and eclectic art play a key role. Among the standout pieces is an oversized abstract grey and turquoise acrylic on a wood panel by Robert Standish, that hangs outside the master bedroom. The kids’ rooms, which each have their own baths, are to-die-for charming but sophisticated enough to last through high school. The centerpiece of Van’s room is world map wallpaper over the bed, that offers both color and conversation. “Adam and Van are always looking at it and having discussions about what’s going on in the world,” says Kristine. Additional pizzazz comes from a huge grey and white geometric-print area rug and Van’s arsenal of nerf guns prominently

displayed on the wall. His favorite spot though is the cozy window seat that overlooks the front yard. Kate’s 17-by-18 foot room is large enough to practice volleyball bumps and comfortably host a sleepover for half a dozen guests. Her favorite piece is a sand-washed grey wood canopy bed from Restoration Hardware, a gift for her 11th birthday last summer. Rustic chandeliers and grey and pink bedding, also from Restoration Hardware, complete the look. To visitors, the home seems completely done, but Kristine admits the kitchen and master still need to be tackled. “With clients you do the whole house at once, but for us it’s a little at a time,” she says. It’s definitely not a problem though— the Kamensteins plan to stay put for years to come. ■


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seen

Femme Fest The fourth annual Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Entrepreneurship Day was held at the Encino home of Shannon Dellimore. The event, which included a panel discussion, was co-hosted by Katie Chin, Janki Lalani Gandhi, Katy Spillers and Carol Cheng-Mayer. The eveningâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s festivities raised $10,000 for the Rape Foundation.

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seen

Garden Party The Garland in NoHo debuted its new healthy cocktail line, Wellness Elixirs, at The Front Yard restaurant. The event included a workout at Beverly Park, the hotel’s outdoor space. The class was led by yogi Jordan Younger of The Balanced Blonde and Orangetheory’s Jonathan Albrecht.

THOUSAND OAKS

Distinctive Residential Settings | Chef-Prepared Dining and Bistro Premier Health and Wellness Programs | Award-Winning Memory Care Professionally Supervised Therapy and Rehabilitation Services

The Community Built for Life.® 805-496-9301 • belmontvillage.com/thousandoaks RCFE Lic. 565802433 © 2018 Belmont Village, L.P.

VenturaBlvd_Dining_2018.indd 1



2/22/18 5:03 AM

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PRO FILES

all about kids From academics to athletics to the arts, it is truly astounding what kids are doing these days. Our children are striving and achieving like never before. Fact of the matter: They don’t get there alone. It takes a village to help kids become healthy, smart, happy adults. This All About Kids profiles section is a showcase of some of the people, schools and child service providers that are helping us cultivate the next generation. Think of this special section as a resource list that you can go back to and utilize all year long.

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STRATFORD SCHOOL

101 LOS ENCINOS SCHOOL

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NACHSHON MINYAN B’NEI MITZVAH JOURNEY

102 GEM EDUCARE

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THE INDUSTRY DANCE ACADEMY

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BRIGHTON HALL

103 WISE SCHOOL 104 VALLEY BETH SHALOM HAROLD M. SCHULWEIS DAY SCHOOL

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CAMPBELL HALL

105 THE WESLEY SCHOOL

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DE TOLEDO HIGH SCHOOL

106 ADAT ARI EL DAY SCHOOL

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CHAMINADE COLLEGE PREPARATORY

107 BRIDGES ACADEMY

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STEM3 ACADEMY

108 LAURENCE SCHOOL

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VIEWPOINT SCHOOL

108 BETH HILLEL DAY SCHOOL

100 PROVIDENCE HIGH SCHOOL

WRITTEN BY LAURA WATTS PHOTOGRAPHED BY TAMEKA JACOBS & MONICA OROZCO

109 BERKELEY HALL SCHOOL


all about kids

Stratford School 1200 N. Cahuenga Blvd. Los Angeles 323-962-3075 StratfordSchools.com/melrose 2046 Allen Ave. Altadena 626-794-1000 StratfordSchools.com/altadena

“Stratford was founded on the belief that education is a significant influence in the life of a child.”

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tratford School is an independent private school with three southern California campuses (Los Angeles, Altadena and Mission Viejo) and a fourth—West Los Angeles—opening this fall. Founded in 1999 by educator Sherry Adams, Stratford School has a total enrollment of 318 students at all of the campuses. Tell us about the history of your school. “Stratford School began with a passion for learning and a desire to bring back excellence in education through a balanced approach. Educator Sherry Adams opened the first Stratford campus in Danville, California, in 1999. Word spread quickly, and the Stratford dream of offering a better way to educate students grew to many communities throughout the Bay Area and in Southern California, where we opened our first three campuses in 2016. Stratford was founded on the belief that education is a significant influence in the life of a child. We understand every child has his or her own interests and passions and contributes in his or her own way. Our goal is to prepare and mentor students for admission to competitive high schools and colleges.” What makes Stratford School outstanding? “We believe high expectations lead to extraordinary results. We begin early, starting in preschool, to apply our innovative and intentionally balanced curriculum in order to inspire and nurture the minds and hearts of every student. We infuse this curriculum with sequential instruction in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics—or STEAM—to help students develop the diverse set of problemsolving skills and talents they’ll need in our changing world. Our passionate teachers also cultivate a physically and emotionally secure classroom environment where children feel safe and eager to try new things without the fear of failing. This carefully designed approach challenges students, accelerates achievement and prepares them to become tomorrow’s creative problem-solvers, innovators and visionary, confident leaders.” What are your school’s strengths? “We build our academic curriculum in a way that intentionally instills STEAM principles through a unique, cross-disciplinary approach that enhances critical thinking, integrates ideas from multiple subjects and ultimately expands student learning.

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We also incorporate both fine arts and performing arts as essential components of our STEAM curriculum.” What do kids love most about your school? “Our students love that we balance learning with fun to spark their curiosity, challenge their mind, prepare them for their future and ultimately instill a lifetime love of learning. Vardhaan Ambati, a Stratford School alumnus, says, ‘My time at Stratford helped shape the person I am today. Academically, Stratford’s preparation was second to none. As I finish up my last semester of high school and prepare for college, I am able to reflect back and appreciate the monumental impact Stratford had on my growth as a student and as a productive member of society.’ And a parent commented on Yelp: ‘Stratford has been a delightful experience for our child and for us as parents. The kindergarten program is stellar. I would go so far as saying it may be the best in the Pasadena area right now. After talking to many friends with children spread across the private and public schools around Pasadena and Altadena, I can say we are getting a unique experience.’” How does your team make students feel welcome and cared for? “Balanced learning requires a nurturing environment—one that both challenges student intellect and encourages creativity. Our passionate teachers cultivate a fun classroom atmosphere where children feel safe and have the confidence to participate and try new things.” What is the #1 way your school helps children become productive adults? “Our curriculum is innovative, challenging and ever-evolving. We focus on core academic subjects and the fundamental skills of collaboration, creativity, communication and critical thinking to inspire children. At the middle school level, we offer advanced instruction and projectbased learning. We want our students to not only consume technology but to also understand how it works and question how it could work better. At this stage our teachers take on a mentor role, cultivating strong relationships with students that last far beyond their time together at Stratford. Our unique approach empowers students to be self-reliant and to take responsibility for their own learning. In short, we prepare students for life beyond Stratford.”

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Stratford teacher and students

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“Our goal is to inspire and guide families to a place where they are proud to stand among those who share their Jewish heritage.”

Nachshon Minyan B’nei Mitzvah Journey

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Rabbi/Cantor Judy Greenfeld 17046 Ventura Blvd. Encino 818-789-7314 nachshonminyan.org

abbi/Cantor Judy Greenfeld is the spiritual leader of Nachshon Minyan and oversees the B’nei Mitzvah Journey program. She is the co-author of two books, has released two music CDs and has officiated hundreds of bar and bat mitzvot.

mitzvah projects and attend monthly morning Shabbat services where their children participate in reading and singing the musical and meaningful prayers. Parents and students have the opportunity to engage in discussions with the rabbi throughout the program.”

success of Judaism. Our goal is for the students to experience the meaningful process as the remarkable transformation that it was meant to be. We do this by uniquely personalizing each ceremony and by going above and beyond for each student and family.”

How do you encourage family involvement in your B’nei Mitzvah Journey program? “We customize our B’nei Mitzvah program to fit each family and honor where they are in their unique Jewish journey. Our goal is to inspire and guide families to a place where they are proud to stand among those who share their Jewish heritage. Our families participate in our special tallit ceremony with their extended family, attend several of our special Pre B’nei Mitzvah classes, help with meaningful

In what ways does your program stand out? “Our innovative B’nei Mitzvah Journey stands out because of our personal, spiritual, transformational touch. We approach every bar/bat mitzvah with the same love, respect and care. We see the B’nei Mitzvah experience as a window of opportunity to imprint the souls of our students and infuse them with the love of Judaism. We believe our B’nei Mitzvah program is a link to their personal lineage, to our Jewish heritage and to the future

Why should we make the children of our community a priority? “The future of Judaism depends on these children. We want our young adults to love Judaism. Our philosophy is that we only have a small period of time to plant the seeds of our Jewish legacy in them. By connecting the B’nei Mitzvah with the values of Torah, the seeds and wisdom of scripture and mitzvot, they begin to flourish. We encourage our students to ask the questions so that Judaism becomes relevant to their lives today.”

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“Dance provides an outlet for children to be creative, physical and musical all while developing meaningful friendships.”

THE INDUSTRY Dance Academy

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HE INDUSTRY Dance Academy is a new, multi-studio, 10,000-squarefoot facility where children of all ages and abilities can train with leading choreographers. Owners Maia Suckle and Rhonda Notary started the business in 2017 and have both performed professionally since they were teens. Maia has performed on stage (Kennedy Center, Pasadena Playhouse) and in many film and TV productions. Rhonda was a Radio City Rockette and toured with The Will Rogers Follies. Their partners (and husbands), Richard Suckle and Terry Notary, are entertainment industry professionals. How does your business stand out? “We saw a need for a high-caliber dance facility in L.A. with great training (for children ages 2–18) and top-tier choreographers teaching the best of every dance genre all under one roof. Parents were driving all

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Maia Suckle & Rhonda Notary Owners 15040 Oxnard Street, Sherman Oaks 818-616-4010 theindustrydanceacademy.com

over the city for various dance classes; THE INDUSTRY now brings the best of everything in one stop.”

their groove on. At THE INDUSTRY you can explore all the latest and traditional dance options available.”

Which activities do you provide for kids? “THE INDUSTRY provides joyful, nurturing and exceptional dance training for every child. Dance provides an outlet for children to be creative, physical and musical all while developing meaningful friendships.”

Tell us about your business name. “Los Angeles is clearly the mecca for show business, so it’s no surprise the term ‘the industry’ has become synonymous with all things connected with the entertainment industry. We wanted a name that encapsulates this.”

What trends are children interested in these days? “Dance has exploded and permeates our culture, whether it be live or on the small or large screen. From a Broadway musical like Hamilton becoming a cultural phenomenon to the massive success of such TV shows as Dancing with the Stars or So You Think You Can Dance to last summer’s big hit by Jennifer Lopez, World of Dance, there isn’t a child who isn’t looking to get

Is your business family-friendly? “This state-of-the-art dance facility has full internet and Wi-Fi access, closed circuit TVs, a study/conference room, a kitchen and a changing room with lockers. We know school is a priority for our students, and we wanted to make THE INDUSTRY a space for them to be able to do homework, have a snack and stay connected with all of the tools they need as students.”

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“For more than 20 years, Brighton Hall has been serving generations of working performers and young professionals who want a strong academic education and the time to pursue their creative goals.”

Brighton Hall

What makes Brighton Hall outstanding? “A huge emphasis is placed on creativity— from our unique lesson plans and inventive teaching approaches to our school’s unwavering support of students’ creative pursuits outside school, which we make possible by offering flexible scheduling and a shortened school day that still prepares students academically for the road ahead. Even our extracurricular activities are creative! Whether they’re huddled around a picnic table for an after-school screen-

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writing class or building a paper tent for a cardboard carnival, our students always find creative inspiration at Brighton Hall.” Tell us about the history of your school. “For more than 20 years, Brighton Hall has been serving generations of working performers and young professionals who want a strong academic education and the time to pursue their creative goals. Many of our students go on to very prestigious universities and win sizeable scholarships, while others continue to build on their professional pursuits.” What do kids love most about Brighton Hall? “Kids love the sense of community that only a school the size of Brighton Hall can provide. They get the intimacy of home school without missing out on the social experiences and lifelong bonds that get

forged at a larger school. We have all the typical traditional events: field trips, proms, banquets and graduations. But at Brighton Hall the kids actually share them with each other! Big kids play with little kids; high schoolers socialize with middle schoolers. The artificial walls that separate kids at other schools just don’t exist here. At Brighton Hall everyone bands together and learns from one another.” What’s a common question people ask? “Prospective parents often ask us, ‘Is Brighton Hall open to more than just performers?” And the answer, of course, is ‘Yes!’ Kids from all kinds of different backgrounds thrive at Brighton Hall. You’ll find athletes, writers, photographers, computer programmers, visual artists, musicians and even world travelers—all trading stories at the picnic table or enjoying some quiet time in the reading nook.”

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY BRIGHTON HALL

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righton Hall is a private preparatory school designed for young professionals in the entertainment industry. The school enrolls students in grades 4–12, with a student-teacher ratio of 8:1. Extracurricular activities that students can choose from include chess, fitness training, screenwriting classes, art and design, dance, band and cooking.

755 N. Whitnall Hwy., Burbank 818-985-9485 | brightonhallschool.org


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“Our classrooms are rich with studentcentered, cross-curricular, inquiry-based problem-solving activities designed to allow students to explore their own potential and learn and grow in a challenging yet supportive environment.”

Campbell Hall

C PHOTOGRAPHED BY DANNY BAKER/EPIC IMAGERY

ampbell Hall is an independent college preparatory school that serves 1,132 students in grades K–12. Next year the school will celebrate its 75th year. What special features do you offer? “We offer a later start to the school day, which we introduced seven years ago, in support of the growing research indicating the many benefits of allowing more sleep for adolescents. In addition, our high school has committed to eliminating roughly half of our 25 Advanced Placement courses and will replace them with Campbell Hall Advanced Inquiry (CHAI) classes beginning this fall. The goal is to expand students’ curiosity through the pursuit of inquiry wherever it leads and to give students an experience of the transformative power of essential questions. These courses demand a great deal of independence, a strong work ethic and highly developed time management skills.”

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4533 Laurel Canyon Boulevard Studio City 818-980-7280 | campbellhall.org What are your school’s academic strengths? “We are open to a variety of instructional methodologies to help our students make stronger curricular connections. Our teaching approaches often deviate from traditional forms of instruction through the use of technology and hands-on activities to present concepts and guide activities. Our classrooms are rich with studentcentered, cross-curricular, inquiry-based problem-solving activities designed to allow students to explore their own potential and learn and grow in a challenging yet supportive environment.” How does Campbell Hall help children become productive adults? “We prepare students for the larger world by nurturing their critical thinking skills within a supportive community; they learn how to work with others with grace, focus, intelligence and optimism.”

Does your school provide support for students’ emotional health? “Spiritual development is at the heart of everything we do at Campbell Hall. We honor the Episcopalian tradition as a place of open inquiry and spiritual formation. Our mission is to nurture the soul and character of our students. We believe that the pursuit of academic excellence flourishes most alongside an equal commitment to nurturing loving, responsible, healthy children. We emphasize the importance of healthy living and mindfulness for all students .” What do kids love most about your school? “Students value the powerful sense of community at Campbell Hall and the relationships they have with their teachers. Students are valued for what they bring to the community in the most full sense; they don’t feel pigeonholed in any way. Balance is encouraged in students’ lives, giving them the opportunity to pursue a wide variety of interests.”

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“We pair academic rigor with a culture of kindness.”

de Toledo High School

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ormerly named New Community Jewish High School, de Toledo High School is an independent Jewish co-ed college preparatory high school founded in 2002. The school offers honors and Advanced Placement courses, performing arts, athletics, STEAM, robotics, a speech and debate team, senior internships, extracurricular activities, a four-year college counseling program and global education opportunities. What are de Toledo High School’s academic strengths? “We pair academic rigor with a culture of kindness. Teachers present opportunities for students to build resilience and grit in a supportive school community. Curriculum is built to encourage teamwork and help push students out of their comfort zone to learn how to grapple with complex issues. We value project-based learning, experiential education and entrepreneurial spirit.”

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22622 Vanowen Street West Hills 818-348-0048 dths.org What special features does your campus offer? “Our beautiful 6-acre campus prepares students for academic and professional success. Abronson/Lainer MakerSpace is home to stagecraft, robotics, digital fabrication, engineering and more. Students tackle challenging science courses in our dedicated labs; compete in our gym, pool and athletic fields; stir their imagination in our indoor and outdoor art spaces; and dance in our awardwinning team’s studios. Daily hot lunch is served from the Hirsch Family Kitchen. Fresh produce is grown in our garden and spirulina in the greenhouse.” What do students love most about de Toledo High School? “Students love that they are valued for who they are in a community that inspires each student to discover his or her unique gifts and use them to better the world.”

How does your team make students feel welcome and cared for? “We build community, one mind at a time. Faculty members care deeply about their students and develop meaningful relationships with them. We guide each student, understanding that students have unique abilities. Teachers love teaching their subjects and are experts in their fields, demonstrating a profound depth of knowledge, wisdom and empathy. They are always willing to help and collaborate eagerly with one another.” What is the #1 way your school helps children become productive adults? “Simply, we build personal character at this important developmental age. At de Toledo High School, students become inspired leaders who, in the best of Jewish tradition, will seek social justice and peace in the world. We raise up students who conduct themselves in accordance with ethical standards.”

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“Our students consider Chaminade more than just a school community; it is a home away from home … a family.”

Chaminade College Preparatory

C PHOTOGRAPHED BY PATRICIA FERNANDEZ

haminade College Preparatory is a coeducational Catholic school in the Marianist tradition, serving nearly 2,000 students in grades 6–12. What makes Chaminade College Preparatory school outstanding? “Our students are actively engaged in their studies through a curriculum that emphasizes student-centered learning. Collaboration among students is facilitated through project-based learning and the use of our 1-to-1 tablet-based technology enabling students to take an active role in their learning. Chaminade also offers The College Board’s AP Capstone program for high school students. It immerses students in the practice of critical thinking skills, encourages a passion for learning and transforms students into curious, collaborative and independent thinkers with skills that are valued and sought after by col-

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leges and universities. Our dedicated faculty take pride in nurturing, mentoring and preparing students for academic success. We encourage leadership and creativity by offering students a multitude of clubs and organizations, a vibrant visual and performing arts program, and outstanding athletics.” How does your school make our community a better place? “Students find multiple opportunities to explore their innate desire to lead. Whether it is through Campus Ministry or other leadership programs such as Diversity Team, Link, Ambassadors or Web Leaders, our students learn to lead.” What is the Marianist tradition? “With Mary, the mother of Jesus, as our model, we work toward deepening the faith of our students from all religious traditions. Campus ministry offers spiritual retreats and community service opportuni-

19800 Devonshire Street | Chatsworth 818-363-8127 7500 Chaminade Avenue | West Hills 818-347-8300 chaminade.org

ties at each grade level to foster relationship-building with God, self and others. Our Marianist characteristics are formation in faith; integral, quality education; family spirit; service justice and peace; and adaption and change.” How do you encourage family involvement at your school? “We welcome, encourage and need parent involvement to make the Chaminade experience an excellent one. When parents share their time, their talents and their resources, they become an integral part of our dynamic Chaminade family and make a real difference in their child’s education.” What do kids love most about your school? “Family spirit is strong at Chaminade. Our students consider Chaminade more than just a school community; it is a home away from home … a family.”

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“While we are paving the way to success for students with special needs, we are also filling the growing gap for skilled STEM workers nationwide.” 6455 Coldwater Canyon Ave., Valley Glen 12095 West Washington Blvd., Los Angeles 13130 Burbank Blvd., Sherman Oaks

STEM3 Academy

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TEM3 Academy provides a curriculum based on science, technology, engineering and mathematics for students with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder, ADHD and other social and learning differences. The school grew out of a pilot program at The Help Group in 2013 and today offers year-round rolling admissions. More than 150 students are enrolled across three campuses. What makes your school outstanding? “While we are paving the way to success for students with special needs, we are also filling the growing gap for skilled STEM workers nationwide. With a 28% increase in the number of students with neuro-developmental differences enrolled in undergraduate STEM fields, we know there is a place for STEM³ Academy graduates in tomorrow’s workforce. Our school is designed to help students find pathways to meaningful work after they graduate from high school or college.”

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818-623-6386 stem3academy.org How does your school make our community a better place? “The school fosters partnerships with parents, the community, universities and enterprise. Partnerships include City of Hope, Northrop Grumman, Rainforest Connection, Raytheon and the W.M. Keck Foundation.” What special features does your school offer? “An Innovation Lab for prototyping and hands-on projects building; small classes led by teachers who are passionate about their field of expertise; an award-winning robotics team; a curriculum rich with opportunities for independent projects and individual expressions of interest; and a variety of Advanced Placement classes.” Does your school provide support for students’ emotional health? “We offer in-house services, such as counseling, speech and language, and occupa-

tional therapy. Our teachers are trained in mindfulness techniques to reduce stress and help children be more aware of their surroundings and each other.” What do kids love most about your school? “The opportunity to explore their interests and passions. Students enjoy internships, mentorships and guest speakers; competitions and challenges both individually and in teams; a variety of after-school classes; and other resources such as drones, 3-D printers and pens, the CNC machine, digital cameras and a virtual reality platform.” How important is play during a school day? “Play is an integral part of learning about the world. It is central to our students’ socialization. Play and PE activities such as table tennis, yoga and athletics are a part of their education at every grade level.”

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“Viewpoint prepares our graduates to live happy and fulfilled lives as lifelong learners and productive, active citizens who serve their communities.”

Viewpoint School

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ounded in 1961, Viewpoint School offers an enriched college preparatory program on its 40-acre campus located in the scenic foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains. Head of school Mark McKee oversees 1,215 students in grades kindergarten through 12. Viewpoint also offers extracurricular activities such as music, filmmaking, robotics, more than 130 athletic teams, arts, computer animation and oceanography. What would you like kids and parents to know about your school? “Serving 1,215 students allows us to go beyond the boundaries of a traditional independent school. We offer a wide breadth of courses and abundant opportunities for our students to stretch themselves in their academics, in athletics, in the arts, in service

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23620 Mulholland Highway Calabasas 818-591-6500 viewpoint.org to the community, and to shape their own unique paths in life. As a K–12 school, the culture of extraordinary learning and compassion begins with our youngest students and sets a warm, intellectually vibrant tone for the entire community. Whether a student’s passion is for oceanography, documentary filmmaking, ancient languages, designing self-driving cars or community service, Viewpoint’s expert teachers challenge their students to pursue their interests to the greatest possible extent, thus discovering their capacity for curiosity and hard work. This approach instills within the students a lifelong love of learning and a confidence in their own abilities.” How does your school prepare students for life in the 21st century?  “In order to prepare our students for success

in the 21st century and careers that have yet to be invented, Viewpoint offers a program with an emphasis on collaboration, creativity, critical thinking and communication. With an understanding of the latest developments in neuroscience, child development and the brain, we offer learning environments equipped with the technology, tools and space needed for students to create and to explore in all areas of the curriculum. As global citizens it is imperative for our students to be engaged with the world— locally, nationally and internationally—and our teachers are dedicated to making these connections at every opportunity. Whether in film or orchestra, team sports or Model UN, AP physics or world literature, Viewpoint prepares our graduates to live happy and fulfilled lives as lifelong learners and productive, active citizens who serve their communities.”

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“Providence is particularly dedicated to fostering our students’ physical, intellectual and emotional health.”

Providence High School

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rovidence High School is a private, co-educational, independent, collegepreparatory Catholic school founded in 1955 that offers its 450+ students three focus programs (Medical, Cinema Arts and Technology) as well as award-winning Performing Arts and numerous academic and co-curricular clubs and activities. What makes your school outstanding? “Providence High School’s Pioneers make it outstanding. A school’s academic and co-curricular programs are only as good as the individuals running them, and the Pioneer spirit runs deep in our faculty and staff as well as our students. We involve our students in decision-making processes about the things that directly affect them: uniforms, school lunch menu, spirit events, faculty hiring and how to engage more of

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511 S. Buena Vista St. Burbank 818-846-8141 providencehigh.org our school community in and out of the classroom. Our Pioneers are never satisfied with the status quo and are continually seeking innovative ways to improve as individuals and as a school community.” What do kids love most about your school? “There is a sincere sense of belonging at Providence that allows students to be their authentic selves. The tagline ‘You Belong Here’ is more than a catchy phrase; it’s truly lived and experienced by students on a daily basis.” What is your school’s mission and vision? “Our mission is to reveal God’s love to all— especially the poor and vulnerable—through compassionate service. Our vision for our students is to cultivate the Pioneer spirit within them to find out what inspires them and empower them to pursue it with gusto.”

How do you encourage healthy habits? “As the only school in the nation owned by a health care organization, Providence is particularly dedicated to fostering our students’ physical, intellectual and emotional health. We kicked off our Healthy Communities initiative this year by ridding our vending machines and lunch line of high-fat and high-sugar snacks and drinks. Every freshman in the class of 2021 was gifted with a fitness tracker to help them personalize fitness goals in our PE classes and to encourage movement throughout the day. Minds on the move learn better, and bodies in motion feel better! We are committed to having the important conversations about healthy habits when it comes to social media, balancing healthy outlets with commitments, and embracing our roles as our brothers’ keepers.”

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“Our students make our school outstanding.”

Los Encinos School

L PHOTOGRAPHED BY LES COMMUNICATIONS

os Encinos School offers a K–6 elementary program that includes academics integrated with a comprehensive arts, humanities, technology, science, drama and P.E. curricula. Service learning and character education are woven throughout the program. Los Encinos School has one class each for kindergarten through sixth grade students—each with two credentialed teachers and an assistant. What makes your school outstanding? “Los Encinos School students feel safe to accept challenges, take risks and learn from mistakes; they listen thoughtfully to diverse perspectives and communicate with intelligence and creativity; they exhibit curiosity and seek innovative solutions to complex problems; and they have the confidence to collaborate and effect positive change. Our students make our school outstanding.”

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How do you encourage family involvement at Los Encinos School? “Our Parent Association is an example of unbridled devotion. The parent volunteers know how necessary it is to be involved, so they require little in terms of encouragement. Many parents comment how rewarding it can be, citing the deep friendships that are made and maintained each year.” What do kids love most about your school? “At the weekly tours for prospective parents, our sixth graders field questions including this one. Answers have included: ‘Everybody’s friendly and helpful,’ ‘The art class is amazing, and they let you try anything,’ ‘Science is so fun,’ and the slightly less specific, ‘It’s just awesome.’” How do you support your teachers and ensure their happiness? “We reward teachers both monetarily and

17100 Ventura Blvd., Encino 818-990-1006 | LosEncinosSchool.org emotionally. Communication and collaborative thinking are key to showing teachers they are appreciated, that they are not alone and that they are a critical part of a supportive team. We are fortunate to have the resources to be able to provide teachers with nearly any teaching tool they request— be it classroom supplies or professional development conferences. We love our teachers, and it shows!” What is your motto? “Our motto ‘Think big, start small’ says it all. With a school population small enough (175 students) to bring everyone together for many all-school activities throughout the year, the result is a diverse community that knows each other by name, learns from one another, looks out for one another, and provides an atmosphere of comfort and familiarity for effective learning.”

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Gem Educare

Eileen Manoukian Founder & Director 5536 Tampa Ave., Tarzana 818-858-5955 | GemEducare.com

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em Educare is a multicultural, educational setting for children ages 0 to 5. This home-based environment gives children the opportunity to play and learn with developmentally appropriate toys and activities that help expand their physical, emotional, cognitive and mental growth. The owner, Eileen Manoukian, realized her passion for working with children after volunteering in South Africa. She opened Gem Educare in 2016 and is a doctoral candidate in the field of early childhood education. In what ways does your business stand out? “Gem Educare is the first and only daycare/preschool that implements the Awareness Integration Model, which is focused on children’s emotional intelligence and well-being. We use a play-based, child-directed philosophy to teach children how to distinguish between their emotions, thoughts and behaviors and realize the impact of their behavior on themselves and others. We teach them how to alter the behavior to get a desirable impact by talking to them and creating a safe space for them to express their thoughts and feelings. We help them release negative feelings and calm down by applying specific techniques, which changes their mood and behavior. We hold meetings with parents where we train them to use these methods at home.” Do you provide enrichment activities for kids? “Yes. Children learn by experimenting and using their imagination, creativity and skills in a fun and joyful environment. We provide a unique environment especially designed with children’s developmental needs in mind, and they are encouraged to express themselves the way they choose.” What does it take to run a kid-related business? “Passion and love for kids and of course a lot of patience, caring and compassion.” What feedback do you get from your youngest customers? “Well, they love being here so much they don’t want to go home at the end of the day.”

“If we pay attention to kids, we will learn a lot from them.” 102

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How did you come up with your business’ name? “Children are the most precious beings. Gem represents that. Educare is a combination of the words Education and Caring, which is what we are doing.”

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“Our size means we’re big enough that there’s something for everybody but small enough that everyone knows your name.”

Wise School

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ounded in 1977, Wise School is a Jewish day school serving 600 students from Parenting Center classes through sixth grade. The California Association for the Gifted awarded Wise School the 5-Star Award for gifted education—one of just four schools, and the only Jewish day school, to receive this prestigious award. What sets your school apart from the rest? “In a first-of-its-kind partnership, we are proud to collaborate with the USC Rossier School of Education to provide students an individualized approach to gifted education curriculum. Our teachers receive high-level professional development incorporating the gifted and talented education standards as defined by the National Association for Gifted Children. We inspire our students to imagine limitless possibilities, and then we give them the skills they need to realize their dreams.”

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15500 Stephen S. Wise Drive Los Angeles 310-889-2300 wise-school.org What do your students love most about Wise School? “The vibe from our students is overwhelmingly positive! Our size means we’re big enough that there’s something for everybody but small enough that everyone knows your name.” How do you encourage families to get involved at your school? “Under the umbrella of our Wise Parents Association, parents can choose a variety of ways to get involved. Their guidance, leadership and feedback are invaluable to our school.” How do you encourage healthy habits? “Wise School actively encourages all stakeholders to live a healthy lifestyle. We help children experience wholeness through our mindfulness program in partnership with the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center. Wise School students

reported a 43% improvement in classroom focus and a 78% improvement in their ability to calm themselves when upset. Our PAWS Program (Positive Appreciative Wise Safe) focuses on values such as integrity, perseverance, kindness, respect and courage, and our advisory program focuses on self-awareness, selfmanagement, relationship skills, social awareness and responsible decisionmaking for sixth graders.” Tell us about your school’s mission. “The vision of Wise School is to inspire and empower our students and their families to learn deeply about our world and Jewish heritage, to be creative and to experience wholeness so that we can make great happen in our community, our nation, Israel and the world. Our school’s goal is that every child will feel a profound connection to their Judaism as well as the incredible world around them.”

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all about kids

“VBS Day School is a community that supports each child and provides a home for the entire family.”

E

stablished in 1978, Valley Beth Shalom Harold M. Schulweis Day School is a K–6 Jewish school that serves 241 students and offers afterschool enrichment clubs, athletics and social action opportunities. VBS Day School is approaching its 40th-year anniversary. What makes your school outstanding? “VBS Day School is a community that supports each child and provides a home for the entire family. We truly partner with our families to help cultivate students to become deep thinkers with compassionate hearts, prepared to be the leaders of tomorrow. It’s the 360º approach, including strong academics in both general and Judaic studies and a commitment to enabling students in developing self-esteem and social-emotional skills in a nurturing environment. We are setting the stage for future success for our students

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by giving them tools to think creatively and make a difference in our world, Tikkun Olam.” What are your school’s academic strengths? “We meet each child where he/she is as a learner by offering differentiated learning and small group instruction focused on each child’s learning style. Our specialized Design Thinking model focuses on empathy, problemsolving and creating—allowing our students to innovate while making a difference.” Does your school provide support for students’ emotional health? “VBS Day School teachers and administrators traveled to Yale University’s Center for Emotional Intelligence to train in their socialemotional learning approach called RULER, where they learned to recognize and regulate emotions. There are core anchor tools used by our staff, including a class charter

15739 Ventura Boulevard Encino 818-788-2199 VBSDS.org and mood meter, and each day teachers in both general and Judaic studies incorporate the self-reflection into their curriculum through SEL (social-emotional learning) check-in points. Students at our school learn to become self-aware of their emotions, problem-solve with others, and build strong and healthy friendships and relationships.” What do kids love most about your school? “In kindergarten, each student has a sixthgrade buddy for mentorship and support. In third grade our students get their own iPads and get to work in our community garden with their parents. We have an entire delegation of sixth-grade students who travel to Israel as part of our LA Tel Aviv Twinning Program with a partner school in Tel Aviv. Aside from our strong, innovative approach, our students love our inspiring and caring teachers!”

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

PHOTOGRAPHED BY DIANA GERMAN TAGLE

Valley Beth Shalom Harold M. Schulweis Day School


all about kids

“Our students realize that mindfulness isn’t a stand-alone part of the day but rather a way of thinking, acting and believing.”

The Wesley School

T

he Wesley School is a K-8 co-educational independent day school established in 1999. The school serves more than 300 students in grades K–8 and offers after-school enrichment classes, such as chess, robotics, sewing, yoga and dance, and an athletic program including flag football, basketball, soccer, swimming, volleyball, cross country and track. What is your school’s motto? “Academic Excellence and Character Development Within the Circle of Family. The Wesley School builds confidence and encourages independence through a challenging academic program that stretches each student to reach the highest level of individual achievement within a supportive, nurturing environment. Wesley cultivates in students strong creative, physical and spiritual foundations to prepare them to be productive and respectful contributors to a global society.”

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Why do you believe the K-8 school model is the best choice for students? “It provides a safe space for children to come of age at an appropriate pace, and a place where they can avoid some of the social pressures found in a secondary school environment. As middle schoolers, our students have the opportunity to be mentors to their younger peers and to be the leaders on and around campus. Our students are more mature and better equipped to handle the rigors of their next educational chapters, thanks to the extra two years we give them to blossom and prepare.” Tell us about your parents’ association. “The Wesley School Parents’ Association plays an integral role in our school’s daily life. This body—composed of every family at Wesley—allows parents to experience firsthand the family feeling that makes Wesley so special. All parents are strongly encouraged to become involved.”

4832 Tujunga Avenue, North Hollywood 818-508-4542 | wesleyschool.org How important is play during a school day? “Imaginative play—both structured and unstructured—is woven into the Wesley experience, building creativity, ingenuity and happiness. Our students learn to master important skills from their teachers while having fun, resulting in increased retention and cognitive functioning. Wesley students are joyous, and thus the memories they are making at school are positive and happy ones.” Does your school offer a mindfulness program? “Yes, at Wesley mindfulness is a fully integrated part of our daily lives and curriculum. Mindfulness might be a deepbreathing exercise, a calming body movement, a story about peace or a community circle discussion on current thoughts, emotions and feelings. Our students realize that mindfulness isn’t a stand-alone part of the day but rather a way of thinking, acting and believing.”

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all about kids

“Making our world a better place is deeply woven into the fabric of Adat Ari El Day School.”

Adat Ari El Day School

What makes your school outstanding? “There are so many facets that make our school outstanding: our exciting collaboration with Stanford University’s d.school; our school values; our innovative Design Lab; our teachers who love coming to work and love their students; the amazing, creative minds of our students; and the way we are preparing them to be the mensches the future needs. But what makes us truly unique from any other school is that we are the first Jewish

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day school in Los Angeles to adopt Design Thinking as its guiding methodology for elementary school education.” How does your school make our community a better place? “‘Start with the Heart’—empathy—is at the center of our Design Thinking philosophy. Making our world a better place is deeply woven into the fabric of Adat Ari El Day School. Student activities and projects use the Design Thinking process to gain a deeper understanding of the world around us and challenge us to make a difference.” What special features does your school offer? “This year we established a collaboration with Stanford University’s d.school K12 Lab Network—the foremost institution in the field of Design Thinking. They bring Design

Thinking to schools through professional training and ongoing consulting services, so our administrators and teachers—and thereby our students—are consistently learning from the best in this field.” What do kids love most about Adat Ari El Day School? “We interview all of our sixth-grade students every year, and they say the top two aspects of our school that have impacted them the most are our teachers and our Design Lab. Our students consistently reference how supportive and welcoming our teachers are; they challenge their thinking while making learning fun. They also love using our Design Lab because it allows them to understand that there is a process to solving any problem and that they have the space, materials and structure in which to do so at ADAT.”

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

PHOTOGRAPHED BY RAUL RINCON

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ounded in 1979, Adat Ari El Day School is a Jewish elementary school that offers a curriculum rooted in project-based learning and Design Thinking methodologies. In addition to general academic classes, the school offers Hebrew/Judaic studies, physical education and performing arts, as well as a wide variety of extracurricular activities.

12020 Burbank Blvd. Valley Village 818-766-4992 aaedayschool.org


all about kids

“Students come to us defined by their challenges and labels but leave defined by their abilities and accomplishments.”

Bridges Academy

B

ridges Academy is a college prep school (grades 4–12) educating twice-exceptional (2e) students who are gifted/highly gifted and learn differently. Founded in 1994, Bridges Academy also operates The 2e Center for Research & Professional Development. What special features does your school offer? “Bridges is a strength-based, talent-focused school. In core classes, electives, talentdevelopment courses, enrichment clusters and large-scale intersession projects, students have the opportunity to increase their knowledge and hands-on experiences and practice the technical, planning and collaborative skills necessary to achieve success.” What do kids love most about your school? “They belong! Bridges students are free to be themselves among friends and teachers who know and understand them as individuals with unique strengths, challenges and personalities. Students have active roles in

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

3921 Laurel Canyon Blvd. Studio City 818-506-1091 bridges.edu their own education as they explore their interests and passions.” In your hiring process, what are your priority considerations? “First and foremost, our faculty must have the ability to see potential and guide students in achieving academic, social and creative excellence. They must demonstrate respect for the unique intellectual and social journey of 2e students. They must have a sophisticated and passionate grasp of their subject, a desire to share their knowledge and enthusiasm to guide students in selfdiscovery and discovery of the world around them. Oftentimes a shared intellectual passion will create a student-teacher relationship that extends far beyond the student’s school years.” Does your school provide support for students’ emotional health? “We recognize that the social-emotional needs of 2e students often are profoundly different from those of their neurotypical

peers. We foster an environment that values empathy, compassion, perspective-taking and an appreciation of differences. Each division has dedicated counselors who work with students and teachers and are instrumental in the development of our socialemotional learning curriculum. Parents are vital partners in our team approach, meeting frequently with the faculty to discuss and continually develop each student’s socialemotional maturity.” How does your school help children become productive adults? “Our program shapes, guides and inspires the development of ‘successful intelligence.’ Students learn who they are and come to understand their strengths and weaknesses. They learn to recognize where they are most successful and become confident in what they have to offer. Students come to us defined by their challenges and labels but leave defined by their abilities and accomplishments. Our graduates are prepared for the new demands of the future.”

APRIL 2018 | VENTURA BLVD

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all about kids

Laurence School “We nurture the joy of learning in every child.”

How does Laurence provide a 21stcentury education? “‘Preparing our students for success in the 21st century requires a balance between teaching traditional academics and devel-

oping skills in critical thinking, communications, collaboration, creativity and technology,’ says head of school Laurie Wolke. ‘It also requires helping students develop life and career skills, such as resilience, public speaking, leadership and the ability to see the world through multiple perspectives. We are very deliberate in designing our curriculum to ensure that any given project, beginning in kindergarten, incorporates multiple types of learning. Most importantly, we nurture the joy of learning in every child.’” In what ways are Laurence students learning life lessons? “This year’s character education pro-

gram theme is Solve and Evolve, which emphasizes the importance of taking risks, accepting responsibility, and coming up with solutions and goals. ‘In fourth grade, we studied how Famous Failures—like Steve Jobs—learned from mistakes and pushed through challenges to grow and succeed,’ says teacher Keegan Nordan. ‘During math, a student was struggling with a problem, and another student offered encouragement by reminding him that we learn from our mistakes,’ says first grade teacher Brittany Geller. ‘It was a wonderful example of our students learning to Solve and Evolve!’”

Beth Hillel Day School “Beth Hillel Day School is a warm and inviting community.”

I

n 2013 the Early Childhood and Elementary School merged to form Beth Hillel Day School. Both schools had well-established programs in the Temple Beth Hillel community since the early 1990s. How does Beth Hillel Day School make our community a better place? ”From the moment you walk through our doors, the love of learning is palpable. Through our joyful, hands-on approach, children develop their natural curiosity and become active participants in the learning process. You will see our teachers celebrating the successes

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12326 Riverside Drive, Valley Village 818-763-8308 | tbhla.org of each child. We endeavor to meet the individual needs of every learner, differentiating their learning experience to help them realize their fullest potential. Throughout the year, students have opportunities to participate in tzedakah (righteous giving) projects that enrich our local community and the world.” What would you like potential students and parents to know about your school? “Beth Hillel Day School is a warm and inviting community. The Parent & Me, Early Childhood and Elementary School programs engage children in rich and creative learning oppor-

tunities, where teachers nurture every child’s confidence and sense of self and where children receive strong and enduring Jewish values. Our caring educators immerse students in critical thinking, problem-solving, creative expression and collaborative learning.” What about individual learning styles? “Different children have different learning styles. If your child would rather figure out a math problem at a standing desk—or perhaps do their reading on a giant bean bag chair in a quiet corner of the room—that’s what we want them to do.” SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

PHOTOGRAPHED BY TRACY GITNICK PHOTOGRAPHY

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ounded in 1953, Laurence School’s five-acre campus serves 300 students in grades K–6. Laurence offers a traditional academic curriculum, experiential learning and character education, focusing on social and emotional development, as well as the promotion of inclusivity and diversity. Providing a variety of arts, athletics and enrichment opportunities, Laurence focuses on the development of the “Total Child.”

13639 Victory Blvd., Valley Glen 818-782-4001 | laurenceschool.com


all about kids

“We understand that in order to improve student learning, teaching must continually improve.”

Berkeley Hall School

B

erkeley Hall School (BHS) was founded in 1911 by sisters Mabel Cooper and Leila Cooper and is the oldest coed independent school in Los Angeles. With an enrollment of 260 from nursery through eighth grade, the school offers a wide variety of visual and performing arts, team sports and enrichment classes, in addition to a rigorous academic program. What makes teaching at Berkeley Hall uniquely effective? “At Berkeley Hall, we understand that in order to improve student learning, teaching must continuously improve. Our Depth of Study program provides regular, structured opportunities for teachers and administrators to study student data, collaborate to improve lesson plans and create a common and aligned set of standards for student achievement across all subject matters.”

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

16000 Mulholland Drive Los Angeles 310-476-6421 berkeleyhall.org How does Berkeley Hall School make our community a better place? “At Berkeley Hall the emphasis on character development is just as strong as academic development. The school’s core values of respect, responsibility, honesty and compassion are taught and lived daily. Students learn to be kind and caring toward one another—and to themselves—and they develop skills of collaboration and leadership. The result is a future generation of conscientious citizens.” How do you encourage the involvement of families at Berkeley Hall? “A child’s education and life experience primarily happen at home and at school. It’s important that parents as well as the faculty and staff of the school are all supporting the same moral values, personal ethics and academic goals. The result is 100% parent participation in our school.”

How do your students embody the school’s mission? “Students embrace fearless scholarship through being willing to ask tough questions, tackle complex problems and stretch beyond their comfort zones— to try, (sometimes) fail and try again. This learned resiliency results in students thinking and saying, ‘I can’t solve this problem yet’ rather than ‘I can’t solve this problem.’” What do kids love most about your school? “Students share that they feel actively loved by their teachers, school staff and their fellow students. As one graduate put it, ‘Berkeley Hall isn’t my second home; it’s just another part of home.’”

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1 sold

AGOURA HILLS

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19

8

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RESEDA

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VAN NUYS

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CALABASAS

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4 sold

36

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3421 Wrightwood Dr - SC - $2,995,0004Br+2.5Ba in 3,672 SqFt on a 15,607 SqFt lot- Amazing Views in this private gated Mid-Century Modern in the hills of Studio City. Features a formal living room w/ soaring exposed beam ceilings, fireplace, lots of natural light. Master suite has a spacious spa-style bathroom. The backyard has a covered patio, pool, outside shower, and a chinese garden with matured fruit trees.

3727 Meadville Dr. – SO - $2,150,000 – 4Br+3.5Ba in 4,877 SqFt on a 10,732 Lot – S. of the blvd contemporary home in highly sought after SO area. Living room w/ walls of glass & FP. Updated kitchen w/ wood floors & stainless appliances. Master suite w FP + huge BA w spa tub. Backyard has amazing views, pool & spa & covered patios.

10633 Chiquita St.–TL- $1,250,000 -3Br+3Ba in 2,000 SqFt on a 7,145 SqFt Lot –Charming Craftsman Bungalow stle home with old world charm on a cul de sac. It features 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, a deck, spacious master suite, and wood flooring throughout. The backyard features a guesthouse with a kitchenette and bathroom.

3942 Deer Ave – SO- $1,250,000– 2Br+2Ba in 1,735 SqFt on a 14,338 SqFt Lot- S. of the Blvd. Mid Century gated estate with amazing tree top, panoramic mountain, valley and canyon views from almost every room. It features vaulted ceilings, skylights, fireplace and much more. Amazing, backyard perfect for outdoor living and entertaining.

Call for your FREE market analysis! ©2016 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties (BHHSCP) is a member of the franchise system of BHH Affiliates LLC. BHH Affiliates LLC and BHHSCP do not guarantee accuracy of all data including measurements, conditions, and features of property. Properties may or may not be listed by the office/agent presenting this information. Based on information obtained from the MLS as of (11/1/2016). Display of MLS data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the MLS. CalBRE 1317331


a better way

REAL ESTATE WITH A SOCIAL PURPOSE We help YOU save tens of thousands of dollars, save valuable time, and create social impact by providing benefits to the charities and causes YOU have a passion for. Whether YOU are buying or selling YOUR home, when YOU partner with SRM Real Estate Group, YOU will save money, save time, and together we can save lives. I offer 30-years of experience in the real estate and mortgage industry, with a transaction volume exceeding one billion dollars. My purpose-driven model will give YOU a custom plan to achieve YOUR unique real estate goals and promote social good. Call me today to begin saving.

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Nobody does it better...

sold

4121 Longridge Ave., Sherman Oaks $7,350,000 www.NewLongridgeEstate.com

coming soon

17428 Oak Creek Ct., Encino $2,499,000 www.OakSpringsEstate.com

sold

17437 Palora St., Encino $4,495,000 www.PaloraEstate.com

sold

5421 Amestoy Ave., Encino $2,350,000 www.AmestoyAvenueEstate.com

sold

3833 Hayvenhurst Dr., Encino $3,799,000 www.RoyalOaksColony.com

sold

4811 Encino Ter., Encino $2,199,000 www.EncinoTerraceEstate.com

in escrow

3856 Vista Linda Dr., Encino $1,599,000 www.VistaLindaEstate.com

sold

sold

16716 Alginet Pl., Encino $1,532,500 Encino Hills

16214 Morrison St., Encino $1,539,660 www.HomeOnMorrison.com

sold

coming soon

17038 Adlon Rd., Encino Price: TBD www.AdlonRoad.com

in escrow

3550 Ballina Canyon Rd., Encino $1,699,000 www.BallinaCanyon.com

14839 Round Valley Dr., Sherman Oaks $1,520,000 www.RoundValleyDrive.com

just listed

5317 Amestoy Ave., Encino $2,699,000 www.AmestoyEstateEncino.com

818.285.3688 www.CarolWolfe.com CalDRE #00477745

#1 Agent Rodeo Realty San Fernando Valley

in escrow

19660 Greenbriar Dr., Tarzana $1,299,000 www.HouseOnGreenbriar.com


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PERSONAL GUIDANCE / SATISFIED HOMEBUYERS

Integrity. Experience. Service. Every home is different, and so is every homebuyer. That’s why I’ve spent 24 years focusing on meeting the unique needs of every home loan client. As your lending specialist, I’ll take the time to understand your priorities and help you find the best possible financing solution.

Trust your home loan to

As a Bank of America lending specialist, I can offer you: • Low, competitive rates, with personalized quotes available by phone • Integrity, experience and personalized service so you can feel confident throughout the home loan process • Jumbo loans up to $5 million on owner-occupied properties, up to $3 million on second homes, and up to $1 million on investment homes1

John Musso Wealth Management Lending Officer, VP

Enjoy the peace of mind of working with a dedicated mortgage professional. I’m looking forward to helping you get started.

NMLS ID: 448606

Contact me today.

johnmusso@bankofamerica.com

818.518.1008 Office mortgage.bankofamerica.com/johnmusso Presidents Club

LIFE / BETTER CONNECTED 1

TM

Minimum down payment requirements vary by property type and location. Loan amount, interest-only payment option, loan-to-value percentage, property and/or occupancy type may require a higher level of reserves and/or post-closing liquidity. For loan amounts greater than $3 million, certain minimum reserve amounts are required to be held in a Bank of America and/or its affiliates (Merrill Lynch and/or U.S. Trust) account. Two separate full appraisals may be required. Excellent credit required, including proof of recent consistent housing payment history. Not available on all loan programs. Other restrictions apply, ask for details. Credit and collateral are subject to approval. Terms and conditions apply. This is not a commitment to lend. Programs, rates, terms and conditions are subject to change without notice. Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender. ©2017 Bank of America Corporation. AD-11-17-0020 ARJV5S5G 12/2017


last word

Confessions of a Helicopter Parent WRITTEN BY LISSA KAPSTROM ILLUSTRATED BY CHRISTINE GEORGIADES

I’m a helicopter parent. At least that’s how the dictionary defines me: a parent who takes an overprotective or excessive interest in the life of their child. Is that a bad thing? I know my boss would be very happy to know that I take an excessive interest in my job. There’s no shame in giving 100% ... OK, 110% ... 115% tops. Full disclosure, I’m a type A personality, and I only have one kid. I was raised very differently from my own child. I came from a house of five kids, three dogs, a hamster, a parakeet, fish and a snake. It was chaos. If my little brother wasn’t dying the dog blue or accidentally shaving his own eyebrows off, my three sisters and I, smeared in our mother’s makeup and wearing ballet tutus on our heads, were jumping on the bed to a Disney soundtrack until one of us was catapulted off. All this inevitably ended in tears. My parents were so tired and distracted that they didn’t know where I was half the time. They never asked me about my grades or worried about my future. It was a different time. Parenting wasn’t a verb. The streets were safe, everyone went to public school, and college was easy to get into. We all could live in the messy moment. Did I mention we kept a small sailboat in the middle of our living room? Growing up like this, I knew all the things that could go wrong. The memory of my brother riding his Big Wheel into the pool and sinking to the bottom because he wouldn’t let go of his beloved ride while the babysitter screamed was all the parental instruction I needed. He was fine. But with my son, we had

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a pool cover, swim lessons at 2, and a “no swimming with the babysitter” rule. And I always knew his whereabouts. I didn’t let him play in the street because our neighborhood had no sidewalks, and the kids were strangers because they all went to different private schools. Not to mention the occasional windowless van I saw cruising around. Okay, maybe it was an Amazon delivery, but I couldn’t take a chance. My son had scheduled activities: playdates, piano lessons, karate. And then—due to the fact that it’s become a Herculean challenge to get into college—there was SAT tutoring, piano competitions, chorus, play and jazz band performances, community service, and AP tests. And I was there making sure he arrived on time, met deadlines and practiced. I also had him download the Find Friends app on his phone so in case he flipped his car into a ditch, I would know which ditch. Some would call me neurotic or overprotective. They’re right. Compared to my parents, I’m not better or worse, I’m just different. My son may not have had the reckless freedom of my youth, but he can come to me with a problem and I’ll listen. He can express an opinion that I don’t agree with and I’ll respect it. He will always know that I’m his biggest cheerleader. If I hover a little that’s because the world these days needs closer watch. And I must’ve done something right because he’s back east in college—happy, thriving, figuring life out. Now it’s me I have to worry about as I miss him and try to find somewhere else to put my 110% … 115% tops. ■


Andrew & Harriet

Results That Will Move You! JU

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19245 Casa Place, Tarzana $2,250,000

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5116 Libbit Ave, Encino $1,695,000

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16924 Mooncrest Dr, Encino $1,329,000

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5345 White Oak Ave Unit B, Encino $699,900

Andrew & Harriet Did It Again! Recent Sales 4529 Gloria Ave, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $4,225,000 5450 Topeka Dr, Tarzana. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,753,750 16998 Encino Hills Dr, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,710,000 5128 Libbit Ave, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,700,000 4101 Witzel Dr. Sherman Oaks. . . . . . . . . $2,435,000 16341 Meadowridge Rd, Encino. . . . . . . . . $2,392,500 17149 McCormick St, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,273,880 4441 Densmore Ave, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,225,000 4356 Empress Ave. Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,220,00 16634 Oak View Dr, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $2,137,200 4483 Estrondo Dr. Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . $1,985,000 14540 Valley Vista Bl, Sherman Oaks. . . . . . $1,970,000 3531 Alana Dr, Sherman Oaks. . . . . . . . . . . . $1,860,000

16055 Meadowcrest Rd, Sherman Oaks. . . . $1,720,000 4156 Hazeltine Ave. Sherman Oaks. . . . . . $1,700,000 3619 Cananea Dr, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $1,650,000 15459 Dickens St, Sherman Oaks. . . . . . . . . . $1,630,000 3668 Willowcrest Ave, Studio City. . . . . . $1,599,000 14825 Sutton St, Sherman Oaks. . . . . . . . . . . $1,500,000 13019 Bloomfield St, Studio City. . . . . . . . . . . . In Escrow Represented Both Buyer & Seller 16067 Valley Wood Rd, Sherman Oaks. . . . $3,500,000 4701 Hayvenhurst Ave, Encino. . . . . . . . . . $3,425,000 3932 Vantage Ave, Studio City. . . . . . . . . . . $2,300,000 16618 Oak View Court, Encino. . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 1,560,000 12942 Bloomfield St, Studio City. . . . . . . . . . In Escrow

AndrewSpitz.com

HarrietCameron.com

BRE#924610 Realtor®

BRE#675971 Realtor®

818-817-4284

818-380-2151

2017 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties (BHHSCP) is a member of the franchise system of BHH Affiliates LLC. BHH Affiliates LLC and BHHSCP do not guarantee accuracy of all data including measurements, conditions, and features of property. Information is obtained from various sources and will not be vafified by broker or MLS. CalBRE 01317331

ED


Not every choice is complicated.

Choosing a Facey doctor for your care is easy.

Picking the right thing to eat when there’s chocolate closeby? Not so easy. But if you’re looking for convenient pediatric care that goes above and beyond, we’re your team. And here’s an even better reason: People love our doctors. Daily News readers have voted us L.A.’s best medical group 9 years in a row. We accept most PPO and HMO health plans. And thanks to our affiliation with Providence, chosing a Facey doctor means a seamless experience at our clinics and Providence’s award-winning hospitals. Ask your insurance company or broker how you can switch today. For a list of the health plans we currently accept, give us a call or visit our website at: facey.com/insurance

Mina Moussavian-Assadi, M.D. Board-Certified Pediatrician Facey Tarzana

Tarzana Primary Care & Women’s Health 18133 Ventura Blvd • Tarzana, CA 91505 • 818-466-7700 FA C E Y. C O M/T A R Z A N A

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Ventura Blvd April 2018  
Ventura Blvd April 2018