July 2, 2012
Orange County's Great Park balloon has been grounded for inspection after a giant balloon in Hong Kong made by the same manufacturer sprang a leak and dropped from the sky last week, injuring five people. Great Park officials shut down the ride for an immediate inspection Friday after learning about the Hong Kong incident, said Great Park spokesman Marcus Ginnaty. Crews didn't discover any issues with the balloon, but Ginnaty said it will remain grounded until inspectors sent by the manufacturer - Paris-based Aerophile - arrive in Irvine to conduct their own investigation.
February 10, 2007
Costa Mesa Newport Harbor Lions Club members are working on plans for the 2007 Lions Club Fish Fry being held June 2 and 3 at Lions Park in Costa Mesa. It's a wonderful family event with carnival rides, homemade pies, corn dogs, deep fried fish and chips, and a baby contest. Visiting the Fish Fry website, www.cmnhlions.com/fishfry , this week, I came across the story of the balloon caper. "The Fish Fry has its roots in the Scarecrow Festival, which was held from 1941 to 1945.
October 28, 2007
With a quick but solid swig of air, Todd C. Baron puffed into a long green balloon, creating the stem to a fragile but mystifying flower. The balloon artist and longtime Costa Mesa resident just spent the last three hours twisting and turning balloons of all shapes, lengths and colors into almost any item an child could imagine for the 16th Annual Pumpkins and Pancakes breakfast at South Coast Plaza Sunday. For the last five years, Baron has taken charge of decorations for the event, although his heart will always be in balloon art. Whether for weddings, proms, or special events, Baron uses the thin pieces of expandable rubber as the focal point of all his jobs.
February 28, 2008
As I write this, I’ve just returned from the annual meeting and dinner of the Airport Working Group, where the featured speaker was Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach. In my column last week, I urged local citizens to attend the meeting, which was public, and suggested that Moorlach — who has consistently supported our efforts to check the expansion of John Wayne airport — would give us “marching orders” to that end. Well, that isn’t exactly what happened.
October 3, 2002
It was an evening with Brian Jones, world-renowned pilot of the Breitling Orbiter 3, a hot-air balloon that traveled around the world in 20 days. Lula and Marion Halfacre, owners of Traditional Jewelers in Fashion Island, joined with Breitling, the family-owned, century-old Swiss watch-making firm, to host the Newport-Mesa crowd at an elegant evening at the Palm Gardens. The recent mid-week cocktail and dinner event introduced Jones to the crowd, which included David Muller, Karen Fleming, Russell and Kathy Lowe, Mary Petersen, John Rossi, John and Ursula Braeger, Eve and Clarence Barker, Tom Casey, Beth Kania, Ann and Viji Sadasivam, and Vera Oxblood of Dover Shores.
June 26, 2003
Enormous balloon art sculptures swam in the pool of the Hyatt Newporter. Balloon palm trees, jumping dolphins and more set the festive tone for the sixth annual Crean Lobster Clambake to benefit the kids assisted by the Children's Bureau. It was an evening of summer fun without the sun. Hundreds of locals dressed in tropical tones converged on the resort as the music of a steel drum band blended with icy mai tai cocktails. It was a recipe for a summer blast that raised big dollars to make a big difference for kids lost in a world that can be as cold and tough and miserable in unimaginable ways.
April 7, 2010
As he sat in his wheelchair outside the Mother’s Market in Costa Mesa on Wednesday morning, Willie Boyd’s calloused hands twisted long, skinny party balloons into the shapes of dogs, butterflies and flowers. “You’re a ray of sunshine,” said Irvine resident June McGucken as she slipped Boyd $5 for making her a red balloon dog. Like many people who see Boyd on the street, McGucken pulled her car over on 17th Street to chat with the toothless, homeless man without legs and a bag of balloons.
February 19, 2000
Jenifer Ragland NEWPORT BEACH -- The Newport Dunes' revised proposal for a resort hotel that debuted at Thursday's Planning Commission meeting has, not surprisingly, received mixed reactions. While commissioners seemed impressed with the proponents' effort to address some of the project's critical issues, one opponent compared it to a bad experience at a used car lot. "It's like asking an insane amount of money for a car so the lowered price seems reasonable," said Bob Caustin, a local environmentalist and Dover Shores resident.
July 13, 2006
UC IRVINE ? More than 100 yellow balloons filled the Bren Events Center's lunch room at noon on Wednesday, tied around the back of each chair. Servers carted cupcakes around the room, and a graduate from the Claire Trevor School of the Arts sang a solo. It may not have been a kid's birthday party, but to many of the UC Irvine leaders present, it probably felt like one. For an hour at the Bren center, Chancellor Michael Drake, Provost Michael Gottfredson and other campus officials gathered to celebrate a singular moment in the history of UCI. Over the past year, the university set a record by garnering more than $101 million in private donations.
May 11, 2007
Forget about diamonds from Tiffany's or a trip around the world. Time after time, moms everywhere say the one thing they really want for their special day is time with their family. With that in mind, here are some very special gifts for Mother's Day. A Grape Escape Let mom experience peace and serenity — something she may not get a lot of at home — while drifting over vineyards as the sun rises over the mountains in Temecula. Take flight with the birds and observe wildlife marveling at the sight of a beautiful hot air balloon floating overhead.