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Author: The Mesa Maven

Sharon Hurd: A Walk Through Fairview Park

When we use the term ‘city’ to describe Costa Mesa, it’s easy to mentally mistake it for a singular, finite entity. An object. A thing. But if I Heart Costa Mesa has taught us anything, it’s that ‘city’ is just a word trying very hard to wrap its arms around a much more complex and undulating aggregate of ideas, concepts and characters. That the true, tangible ‘realness’ of Costa Mesa does not begin and end along the edges of her borders – but with the living, breathing individuals that move about her middle.

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Listen: Podcast “Starlight Theatre Opera Star”

On this episode of The I Heart Costa Mesa Show, we talk to Deborah Hayes, Founder and Director of family-owned-and-operated Starlight Theatre in Westside Costa Mesa. Starlight offers acting opportunities and singing lessons for kids and adults. Go take a class, see a show or check them out on the weekends for Improv, too! Be sure to listen to the end, when Mrs. Hayes sings us out of the episode with her beautiful opera voice…

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Listen: Podcast “Volcom to KOZM”

On this episode of The I Heart Costa Mesa Show, we talk to local surfer, yogi, entrepreneur, professor, self-proclaimed hustler and Costa Mesa family-man – Derek Sabori – about his almost-20 years at Volcom, finding sustainability, starting his own brand, and how yoga can change anyone’s life (especially men.)

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Listen: Podcast “Mental Health On The Mesa”

In this episode of The I Heart Costa Mesa Show, we talk to local psychotherapist, Carrie Cueto, all about mental health, addiction, meditation, motherhood and dealing with change. No Fast Final Fives in this one. (Cueto was one of our very first episodes ever recorded and we didn’t come up with that idea until we had a few in the can.) Here is a link to information about her local, therapy practice…

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Listen: Podcast “Michael Recycle”

In this episode of The I Heart Costa Mesa Show, we talk to Michael “Recycle” Carey, Sustainability Coordinator for the OCC Recycling Center. We talk about Carey’s background, the epic new recycling center at Orange Coast College – and we try to stump the expert with a “Can You Recycle This Item?” game. Will we stump him? Listen and find out!

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The Next Chapter For Church’s

Living in this city in 2018 sometimes feels like “A Tale of Two Costa Mesas.” There’s the first city, the original city, the city of years past. This version of the city is fueled by fond memories, cherished memorabilia, deep family roots and historical significance. It mattered, and matters, to lots of residents – it is home, after all. Yet it finds itself increasingly out-of-place in a relentlessly-modernizing Orange County. The second city, the new city, is the Costa Mesa of opportunity and renewal…

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Bocce Me, Bambino

We don’t just love Costa Mesa for the beautiful weather, beach-close location and endless options for fun, food and festivities – but for the kinds of people this city attracts. Our neighbors have got to be the very best thing about this community and what make it such a unique place. And today’s featured Costa Mesans are nothing if not unique, having created a local, after-work, social league putting a fresh, modern spin on an ancient sport. The game is bocce ball. The place is Gunwhale Ales. The night is Tuesday and the Costa Mesans are Rachel Wong and Corey Walker, co-owners of Left Coast Sports.

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Cultivating Our Cultural Canvas

The well-known British sculptor, Antony Gormley, is often quoted as saying: “I believe in the city as a natural human environment, but we must humanize it. It’s art that will re-define public space in the 21st Century. We can make our cities diverse, inspirational places by putting art, dance and performance in all its forms into the matrix of street life.” He should know. He’s spent a lifetime creating sculpture designed to adorn public spaces.

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Lisa Albert: Art From The Heart

Hearting Costa Mesa is such an adventure! There’s a discovery behind every door, artwork down every alley and something truly notable tucked in every nook and cranny. No matter how much we cover Costa Mesa, we still make new discoveries on the daily. Today’s feature is a perfect example. We had no idea they existed, let alone for over 25 years. But now that we’ve become acquainted with Lisa Albert Art Studio, we can’t imagine 17th Street without this charming, makerspace oasis.

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Of Pets And Vets

Our local bipeds aren’t the only wonderful and important residents of beautiful Costa Mesa. This city also has a strong contingent of purrrr-fectly fabulous and furry Costa Mesans for whom life is enjoyed on all fours. We’re talking, of course, about local pets: pooches, mousers, fur babies! Those cuddly companions who make life worth living and are as much a part of the family as any human. But sometimes our domesticated darlings get sick, or require expert help to overcome life’s bumps and bruises.

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The State Of Gray

“What makes Costa Mesa different from other places in Orange County?” It’s the question we ask in every, single interview we do. And while the answers have varied from, “independent spirit,” to “lack of that cookie-cutter vibe,” to “blue-collar history,” to “the Segerstrom family” – one theme keeps coming up over and over again: passion. That thankless, penniless, knuckle-down, bootstrappy kind of passion that’s so much a part of who you are, it takes more effort to reign it in than it does to go out and act on it.

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Camp Lila: Behind The Garden Gate

It’s no secret we think Costa Mesa is a pretty magical place. There’s just something about this city – an energy, a scene, a gravitational pull – that inspires creativity, courage and independence. People want to be a part of it. Or as today’s featured Costa Mesan, Katie Sherouse, more eloquently puts it: “Our vibe attracts our tribe.”

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Thunderking: Taking Cold Brew By Storm

Nothing brings more joy to the I Heart Costa Mesa team than connecting with fellow Costa Mesa Superfans. So imagine our jubilation when we unearthed Costa Mesa brother-in-hearts, Rexford “Dean” Tompkins of Thunderking Brewing Company. Tompkins is a “local boy” who – since April 2015 – has been quietly (and then not-so-quietly) killing it in the cold-brewed coffee space. If you trip and fall anywhere in Costa Mesa, it will likely be straight into a keg of Thunderking cold brew.

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Farm It Out: SOCO Farmers’ Market

The beauty of living in a city as diverse and eclectic as Costa Mesa is the panoply of pastimes laid before us. From social clubs to health clubs, escape rooms to spring blooms – and everything in between – this town is truly replete with recreation. Lucky us! Luckier still every Saturday morning from 9am – 2pm, when the charming, community-minded SOCO Farmers’ Market comes to South Coast Collection, in the parking lot adjacent to The OC Mix.

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Go For Broke: Brokedown Clothing

We all know Costa Mesa as the “City of the Arts” – but it could just as easily be “The City of the Side Hustle” for all the scrappy creativity and bootstrapping going on behind the scenes. Costa Mesans have been side-hustling long before it was ever a meme. With so much “garage hobbying” going on, it’s no surprise some of our best-received, locally-born brands started out that way. This trajectory is one that’s all too familiar for Jodi Benavidez.

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The (Mexi)Cool Kids: Vient Studios

The summertime Costa Mesa Concerts In The Park series at Fairview Park, in Westside Costa Mesa, is one of the best annual events in our city. Live music from great bands, yummy food trucks, free activities for the kiddos (like face-painting and balloon animals), adult beverages for the 21-and-over crowd, dancing, singing, socializing – and a general coming together with thousands of Costa Mesans of every age and persuasion. It’s excellent in every way!

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Soirée Mainstay: Baker Party Rentals

Here at I Heart Costa Mesa, we think every day spent in our beautiful city is reason to celebrate – and we’re in good company! Today’s featured Costa Mesans are truly the life of the party… as in, you’d be hard-pressed to throw one without them. They are so interwoven into the festivity fabric of our city, chances are you’ve already attended at least one party (and likely many, many more) outfitted by Baker Party Rentals…

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Fall Into The Trap

One of the best things about Costa Mesa is there’s always something fun to do. Golfing, mushing, felting, sweating, rocking out – the list goes on and on! Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something new comes to town and the thrill of discovery begins all over again. So we were thrilled to discover a fun, Costa Mesa first, recently, when we popped in on TrapZone Escape Rooms in the SoBeCa District.

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The School Of Art

As another school year wraps up in The City Of The Arts – and Costa Mesa students count down the days until summer break – I Heart Costa Mesa headed down to the campus of Orange Coast College to learn more about their popular Visual & Performing Arts program.

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Hit The Trail

This city is made great by all the people “just quietly doing their thing.” By and large, Costa Mesans aren’t big on bragging or self-promotion. They don’t necessarily want or need praise…

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At The Chamber Door

Costa Mesans are a giving people. There’s a pulse of generosity that beats through this city, powered by neighbors as likely to give you the shirt off their back as a pat on yours. Groups, committees, associations, teams, volunteers…

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Contain Yourself

Every once in a while we stumble upon a “costamazing” little find with a “je ne said quoi” that really bates our breath. And this week’s feature brings the magic in the all the best, most-antiquey and frenchiest ways possible. We’re talking about the lovely, little-corner, quonset hut….

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