Hsi Lai Temple marks 25th anniversary with arts and music

As part of its 25th anniversary, the Hsi Lai Buddhist Temple will celebrate with a free music and art festival this Saturday in Hacienda Heights.

“Buddhism is the way to understand the heart,” explains the Temple’s abbot, Venerable Hui Dong. “Music and art are also means that touch the heart. By putting them together, the festival is in fact a journey to the deepest of one’s heart.”

Organizers have lined up more than a dozen bands and artists for the family event. It will be held from 4 to 8:30 p.m. in the temple courtyard at 3456 Glenmark Drive.

“We’ll have some great local bands perform this weekend,” said Mario Cee, one of the festival organizers. “It’s sort of East meets West, with indie and folk bands performing along with the Chinese drum troupe, as well as the temple’s zither and erhu bands.”

The Walnut photographer says Buddhism has had a dramatic effect on him.

“It’s totally changed my life. The meditation and teachings have taught me to live in the present and be mindful of how I treat others,” Cee said.

The Hsi Lai Temple docent has led tours of the Buddhist Temple for the past six years. He studies meditation in the Hacienda Heights shrine every Sunday.

“Meditation really helps my concentration and focus,” Cee noted. “We’re lucky to have such a beautiful Buddhist temple right here in Southern California.”

The traditional Chinese mountain monastery is built off Hacienda Boulevard in the Puente Hills. It is one of the largest temples in North America, and the American headquarters for one of Taiwan’s biggest Buddhist organizations, Fo Guang Shan.

The temple’s founder, Venerable Master Hsing Yun, built it to serve as a bridge between East and West. It teaches Buddha’s instructions on kindness and compassion, as well as joy.

For more, read Rich Irwin’s story BUDDHIST.

Helpful Honda Guys offer free car wash on Father’s Day in Covina

The helpful blue shirts are back, just in time for Father’s Day weekend! The Helpful Honda Guys from the commercials are celebrating dads this Father’s Day weekend with complimentary carwashes and valet parking all across Southern California, and are excited to spread the helpfulness this Father’s Day in Covina with complimentary washes for Honda drivers at Grand Car Wash starting at 10 a.m. at 744 N Grand Ave, Covina.

For all locals and non-Honda owners, SoCal Honda is also asking residents to send them a message at #HelpMeHonda to ask for helpfulness. Whether you would like the blue shirts to volunteer at your summer lemonade stand, need help moving into the dorms, or about to get married and could use some extra hands to setup your wedding.. the Helpful Honda Guys are real and here to help just like in the new commercials “Random Act of Helpfulness”.

For clues on what the helpful guys are up to, and to request them at your next event, visit https://www.facebook.com/SoCalHondaDealers and Twitter @HelpfulHonda.

Caltrans announces closings for work on Route 60

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will close portions of SR-60 from the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605) to the Orange Freeway (SR-57) separation, as part of a pavement rehabilitation project.  Closures are as follows and subject to change.

Monday, June 16, through Friday, June 20

Eastbound SR-60

  • ·         10 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • ·         11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane CLOSED between I-605 & Azusa Avenue

Westbound SR-60

  • ·         11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • ·         10 p.m. to 4 a.m. – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

Friday, June 20, through Sunday, June 22

Eastbound SR-60

  • ·         10 p.m. to 8 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • ·         7 p.m. to 9 a.m.     – Seventh Avenue on-ramp CLOSED
  • ·         12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between Seventh Avenue & Hacienda Boulevard
  • ·         11 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound I-605 to eastbound SR-60CLOSED

Westbound SR-60

  • ·         12 a.m. to 4 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • ·         10 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Fairway Drive and Old Brea Canyon Road on-ramps CLOSED
  • ·         12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Nogales Street
  • ·         11 p.m. to 10 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound SR-57 to westbound SR-60CLOSED
  • ·          Friday 11:59 p.m. to Saturday 5 a.m.  –FULL FREEWAY CLOSURE between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

Detours will be posted. New pavement will improve mobility and enhance safety for motorists.  Flatiron West Inc. is the contractor on this $121.5 million project which is expected to complete fall 2014.


Father’s Day fundraiser held for Walnut Relay for Life

Alamo Car Wash and Passionate Florist are hosting a “Father’s Day…Fun Day” to raise money for the Walnut Relay for Life, American Cancer Society. The fundraiser will take place on Sunday, June 15, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Alamo Car Wash, 784 North Nogales in  Walnut.

On this day, fathers who wash their cars, will receive free food and fun. A portion of all car wash sales will be donated to the Walnut Relay for Life.

Festivities will include sports channels on all Alamo Car Wash TVs, wrestling table and games available for fun. Street Tacos and Fruit Revolution, which are Walnut businesses, will provide the food. Alamo Car Wash and Passionate Florist will provide the games and treats.

Walnut Relay for Life is a 24 hour event taking place at Mt. San Antonio College, Hilmer Lodge Stadium, 1100 North Grand Avenue, Walnut, CA 91789. The relay begins on Saturday, June 21, 2014 at 9:00 a.m. and ends on Sunday, June 22, 2014 at 9:00 a.m. Participants may register online at www.relayforlife.org/walnutca or they may register onsite at 8:00 a.m.

There will be a special tent at the relay for Cancer Survivors and Caregivers. Activities include Zumba, Kidz Kamp, an inflatable obstacle course, Luminaria ceremony and MTM Band. The Walnut Relay for Life is a fun event for all ages.

For additional questions, call: Passionate Florist (626) 506-8014.

Puente Hills Habitat holds nature photography contest

The Puente Hills Preservation Habitat Authority invities residents to join a nature photography contest running through June 15th, awarding a total of $500 in cash to top entries.
The photography contest, currently accepting submissions, aims to promote interest in the unique expanse of urban wilderness and to encourage use of the trails through the canyons and wildlands of the Puente Hills.
Photos submitted must be original works taken from the Preserve, falling in one of four categories: flora, fauna, landscapes, and recreation. The top 40 works will be exhibited at Whittier City Hall this summer, and five winners will be awarded a $100 cash prize, one per category, as well as a wildcard “People’s Choice” category.
For more information please visit www.habitatauthority.com/contest.

Emergency preparedness fair on June 21 in Schabarum Park

Understanding that emergencies and disasters can happen at any moment, Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe is inviting residents to learn valuable life-saving skills at a free community emergency preparedness fair on Saturday June 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Schabarum Regional Park in Rowland Heights.

“We live in a region that is susceptible to fires and earthquakes, and residents must be prudent in ensuring they are ready in case of an emergency,” said Supervisor Knabe. “I encourage all residents to attend this free event, because in the event of a disaster, it’s critical to have a plan to get themselves and their families out of harm’s way.”

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Los Angeles County Fire Department, CHP, Office of Emergency Management, Animal Care & Control, Public Works, Public Health, Red Cross and many more organizations will be available to demonstrate life-saving techniques, like CPR, and provide informational handouts.

A representative from Cal Tech will deliver a keynote address on earthquake preparation in southern California. Fair attendees will also have the opportunity to purchase emergency equipment and supplies, including first aid kits, water, food, and generators.

Hazardous and E-Waste Roundup set for June 14 at Fairplex

A Household Hazardous and E-Waste Roundup will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on June 14 at the L.A. County Fair, Hotel & Exposition Complex at
Gate 9 on White Avenue in Pomona.

County residents will have the opportunity to safely discard of household hazardous waste such as antifreeze, unused pharmaceuticals, car batteries, used motor oil, paint, pesticides, home-generated sharps waste such as  hypodermic needles, pen needles, syringes, lancets, and intravenous needles, universal waste including household batteries, fluorescent light bulbs, and electronic waste (e-waste) such as TVs and monitors, computers, VCRs, stereos, and cell phones.

The free program is sponsored by the County of Los Angeles and presented by the Department of Public Works and the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County in cooperation with the City of Pomona and the neighboring cities of Claremont, Covina, Diamond Bar, Glendora, Industry, La Verne, San Dimas, and Walnut.

So Cal Edison, Green Home Builder plan green home in Walnut

Following the success of the award-winning original ABC (Affordable,
Buildable, Certifiable) Green Home at the Great Park in Irvine, California,
Green Home Builder magazine, Southern California Edison (SCE) and Habitat
for Humanity will break ground on a new ABC Green Home 2.0 in Walnut  on June 9.

The project demonstrates that a solar-powered, sustainable home can be built
using available materials, technology and appliances at a cost that is
competitive with conventional housing.

Implementing numerous sustainable building practices, the ABC Green Home 2.0 will continue its high-performance themes brought to life by the original project and maintain the principles of being affordable, buildable and third-party certifiable.

The high-performance home is being developed by Green Home Builder magazine, supported by SCE and built by Habitat for Humanity. Noted design team members include The KTGY Group Architecture + Planning, Urban Arena, Gouvis Engineering Consulting Company, and Ripple Creative Group-all part of the original team from the original ABC Green Home.

Hsi Lai Temple plans music and arts festival on June 21

From indie folk and atmospheric alternative to Chinese drum troupe and zither music, a diverse lineup of Los Angeles area musicians is slated to play the First Annual Hsi Lai Temple Music and Arts Festival this month.

The free family event, the first of its kind at the location, will take place Saturday, June 21, from 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the courtyard of the temple, located at 3456 Glenmark Drive in Hacienda Heights.

Also featured will be a showing and sale of works by a selection of artists and craftspeople — some working on site — along with vegetarian food booths, book sales, face painting and more. Public areas of the facility will be open during the event, which marks the temple’s 25th anniversary.

Local musicians and artists were publicly invited to submit their works for consideration for this event, whose theme is practicing compassion through music and art. More information is on the festival’s Facebook page, facebook.com/hltmusicandarts.

Among the bands will be The Zero Summers, who describe their music as “bossa garage anti-pop”; Ever In Bloom, a “new-age/old-school/ melodic-poetic” band centered on three close friends and songwriters; and Alnilam, whose music combines dreamy atmospheric sounds, vivid images and soaring harmonies. Also appearing will be Red On Strike, who will perform a semi-acoustic set of late ‘90s post-punk rock; indie retro folk-pop duo The Gypsy Lights; and The Lotus Band, whose soulful alternative music seeks to inspire listeners to contemplate a mindful, positive life.

Participating visual artists will include artist and Emmy-winning animator Donna Kay Lau, who has worked on Dora the Explorer, CatDog, Oswald the Octopus, Generator Rex and other series for Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network. She is also designer of two clothing lines, Art is On! and Surf Soup Surf Couture.
Also appearing  will be Hollywood concept artist Chris Ayres, author of the Daily Zoo books, which began as a sketchbook started as part of Ayres’ cancer healing process. Dr. Nancy Cowardin, creator of the Parade of the Buddhas and Silk Road Map triptychs for the international Buddha’s Birthday Education Project, will be showing and selling her art along with Yaya Tam. Helen Stiver will be displaying and selling her exquisitely handcrafted jewelry.
“Buddhism is the way to understand the heart,” says Venerable Hui Dong, Abbot of Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple. “Music and art are also means that touch heart. By putting them together, the festival is in fact a journey to the deepest of one’s heart.”

Jellick Elementary students raise money for Rowland Heights Library

For the past 19 years, the sixth grade students in Mrs. Buck’s class at Jellick Elementary School in Rowland Heights have kept a very special tradition going to support their local community.

Every May, her students sell colorful, plastic Rexlace strings (bracelets, key chains) after school to all the students on campus.  At the end of each May, the sixth graders walk to the Rowland Heights County Library, in order to bring their profits as a donation for the purchase of new books.

(The students take other trips during the year to learn research and study skills in the library.)

Students are eager to see how their sales stack up against previous years, where donations have ranged anywhere from $150 – $448.

Over the last 19 years, Jellick sixth graders have donated more than $7,200.00.  With those funds, the library has purchased more than 600 books.

After receiving the donation, the Children’s Librarian, Jeff Jarrett, asks the students for suggestions on how to spend the funds; such as their favorite series of books, authors or future releases.

Once the books are purchased, the library places a bookplate sticker inside the front cover, acknowledging the books as donations from Jellick Elementary students.

The most rewarding thing for the Jellick staff is seeing the 6th graders making a difference in their community and that they are helping to enrich the library’s collection of books for all ages to enjoy.