Kiwaniscoop 9/9/19

We had a great time at our most recent Kiwanis meeting and were proud to host some very distinguished guests!

Anna Garalde from Mychal’s Learning Place joined us and invited us all to participate in some upcoming events to support Mychal’s. The Day of the Dead-themed Bingo Night will be on Saturday, October 26th with an after-party at Manhattan House. The Great Santa Stroll will be at the Hermosa Beach Pier on Saturday, December 14th and we hope to join (possibly with the Santa Float)!

Rick Carver, our outgoing Division 19 Lt Governor, and Phil Brock, our incoming Division 19 Lt Governor, also attended to introduce themselves and invite us to the installation brunch at the Santa Monica Elks Lodge on Sunday, September 22nd. Tickets can be purchased here; we hope you can make it!

We’ve got a lot going on, so please mark your calendar for these other important dates:

  • Wednesday, September 25th: Kiwanis Club of Manhattan Beach Social Night from 6:00pm - 7:30pm at Britt’s house with a buffet dinner at Grunion’s afterward (Uber/Lyft recommended)

  • Saturday, October 26th: Los Angeles Toy Loan Program Toy Drive at Mira Costa High School

  • Saturday, October 5th - Sunday, October 6th: Hometown Fair!

  • Sunday, December 1st: Kiwanis Holiday Pancake Breakfast at the Joslyn Center from 8:30am - 11:30am

  • Monday, December 2nd: First night of the Santa Float

Thank you for reading! See you at the next meeting (or at the social night)!

Kiwaniscoop: 8/12/19


At our August Kiwanis Meeting, we were happy to welcome a speaker from Access Books, a program that collects gently used books and donates them to school libraries in need. We hope to couple their mission with our upcoming LA Toy Loan toy drive and be a resource for them in the future. We’re so happy that they made time to join us and we hope that if you’re interested in making a positive impact on the community, you’ll join us at our next meeting!

Walk with Sally Friendship Bowl


The Kiwanis Club of Manhattan Beach was happy to participate in the Walk with Sally Friendship Bowl on March 9th. We came dressed in our wintery best to raise awareness about the Santa Float and to raise money for cancer research and treatment. The team had a great time bowling and mingling with other members of the community united in the fight against cancer. We are so proud to have been able to participate in such a fun and worth event!

By the way… we won!


Kiwaniscoop: 1/17/19


We had great meeting to kick off the new year. Our keynote speaker was Jacqueline Dolan, Founding President of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), an LA-based charity that helps children with special needs navigate a complex legal system.

CASA alleviates the feelings of abandonment and alienation that scar these young lives by harnessing the compassion and generosity of caring adults who can and do have an enormous impact on the development of the child at all ages.

Jacqueline enlightened us about all the wonderful work that CASA is doing right in our backyard and garnered support from the membership as she told compelling stories about the wonderful kids who pass through the program.

We look forward to seeing Jacqueline at future meetings and to giving CASA our support. Please join us at a meeting to hear amazing stories of philanthropy and service from outstanding, altruistic individuals.

First Annual Pancake Breakfast with Santa a Big Success

The First Annual Pancake Breakfast with Santa was a major success and we were so proud to have been a part of helping Manhattan Beach kick off the Christmas Season. We had so many great volunteers who gave their time and worked their tails off to make this happen.

Our event chair, Suzanne Karger, led a tremendous effort that saw over 300 people served breakfast and over $3,000 in proceeds raised to benefit Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. We were also able to bring the Santa Float up to the Joslyn Center to allow people to take photos for their holiday cards with enough time to send them out before Christmas.

We hope to make this an ongoing, annual tradition in the community. Thank you to the citizens of Manhattan Beach for making this event so much fun and so rewarding!

Kiwaniscoop: 9/18/18

Kaitlyn Sciarrino, Founder of Kindheartedly, joined as our keynote speaker

Kaitlyn Sciarrino, Founder of Kindheartedly, joined as our keynote speaker

New Meeting Night: We enjoyed another great meeting but this time on Tuesday night. The first big update under our new president, Cindy Carvel, is that we’re switching our meetings from the second Monday of the month to the third Tuesday of the month. Mark your calendars!

Kindheartedly Presentation: We were extremely fortunate to be joined by Kaitlyn Sciarrino, a senior at Mira Costa High School but, more importantly, the Founder and Executive Director of Kindheartedly. Kindheartedly is a 501(c)(3) charity focusing on improving the experience of female foster youths by creating “Kind Kits” (see picture above) that gives young women possessions to be proud of and to make them feel more normal in an often chaotic situation. To date, the primary beneficiary of Kindheartedly has been Maryvale Orphanage in Rosemead, CA.

Kaitlyn hopes to expand to additional orphanages as Kindheartedly grows and also begin to influence public policy. She raised over $10,000 in her most recent fundraiser and is looking for venues and volunteers for her next one, scheduled for January of 2019. Kindheartedly is off to a fast start, having won seed funding through a competition sponsored by the Young Entrepreneurs Academy. Kaitlyn shared with us her favorite quotation, which adequately sums up the mission of Kindheartedly:

We’ve had a police chief, a former fire chief, and many other impressive figures but Kaitlyn may have been our most impressive presenter to date. After she finished, our Kiwanians rushed to help her with her upcoming event, providing advice, support, and possible solutions to the resources she seeks.

Breakfast with Santa: We are confirmed for Saturday, November 24th at 8am at the Joselyn Center. We will be serving up pancakes as well as opportunities to take photos with Santa on the newly redesigned Santa Float. Tickets will be $10 each and there are sponsorship opportunities that range from $750 for bronze, $1,500 for silver, and $2,500 for gold. More info can be provided by Suzanne Karger and Doug Bermudez if you have questions. Thank you to you both for your hard work on this exciting new initiative!

Hometown Fair: The Hometown Fair is coming on October 6th and 7th and we need volunteers to help with the bike and stroller valet. We do this in an effort to provide a valuable community service, earn a few bucks through donations, and raise awareness for Kiwanis. Peter Yollin is on the Hometown Fair Board and can answer questions if you have them. A survey was just sent out to sign up for time slots, so if you didn’t receive it, please contact Michael Block.

Board Installation Party: We are planning our board installation party and dinner for October in lieu of our normal monthly meeting. We are still solidifying a date, however, October 25th is the current frontrunner. Jeff Wilson is running point and will be finding a venue that will work best for us. He’ll send an update soon, so stay tuned!

Social Night: On Friday, September 28th, Rick Block will be hosting a Social Night featuring Trivial Pursuit and adult beverages. Please bring a $10 gift certificate to a business of your choice so that we can add it to the list of prizes. The Evite went out on September 10th, so check your email to make sure you got it! Rick will information if you haven’t received it yet.

Happy Dollars/Sad Dollars: We had some great happy and sad dollars but I did a terrible job of taking notes. Suffice to say that everyone had much more happy than sad. Desiree is recovering nicely from a knee surgery, Misty was feeling a lot better after the recent car accident, Doug was celebrating being named a top 401k advisor, Michael was looking forward to his daughter’s third birthday, and DeAnn was happy to introduce Kaitlyn and Kindheartedly to us all.

See you next month at the Board Installation Party!

Kiwaniscoop: 8/13/18

Former Manhattan Beach Fire Chief, Bob Espinoza, addresses the Kiwanis Club of Manhattan Beach

Former Manhattan Beach Fire Chief, Bob Espinoza, addresses the Kiwanis Club of Manhattan Beach

For today's meeting, we were happy to welcome guests from the Kiwanis Club of Hermosa Beach. Richard and Julie joined us to tell us about their upcoming event, Taste of the Beach. We hope that you'll be able to join!

Our keynote speaker was Chief Bob Espinoza, formerly of the Manhattan Beach Fire Department. Joining him was, Mike Boyd, current Battalion Chief at MBFD. Bob shared with us some fascinating facts about the fire department. There are 3 shifts per day with 9 people per shift. 66% of the call volume is for EMS services and MBFD records over 3,400 calls/year. They also deal with ALS, advanced life support (paramedics), and BLS: basic life support (EMTs). Everyone from Captain and below are paramedics. At MBFD, they transport patients but not all depts are able to. For any house fire, MBFD needs 18-19 firefighters which often means drawing resources from other departments. With about 100 fire call/year, this means that mutual aid is a necessity. Right now, as expected, many of California's resources are tied up with fighting wild fires, where they send teams in to be relieved after they have spent time fighting the wildfires. 

After the keynote, we did our election of new officers. We'll be posting those results shortly!

Suzanne Karger then presented her ideas for the upcoming Pancake Breakfast. We are hoping to use the Joslyn Center and we're getting a discount for being a 501c3. We're hoping for over 150 people to attend and Cindy is doing a lot of the admin work. The proposed date is Sunday, November 25th. Ashley and Brandon Oates doing marketing and we'll be pitching the event on November 16th. Doug Bermudez donated $1,500 to the cause! Big thanks to Doug! Tickets will be $10 with a possible discount for city employees. 

We then went into Happy Dollars, where members give donations to speak about positive events in their life. Stan gave happy dollars because he was glad to see Tiger Woods competing again. Steve gave happy dollars to welcome the new officers and to thank Bob Espinoza for coming. Desiree gave some HDs because she was grateful that her kids were back in school. Tom gave HDs because he was happy to with all his friends at Kiwanis. Bob gave HDs for getting a free meal! Ashley gave a HD for becoming a new member. Cindy and Misty gave HDs for some new open house opportunities. Rick ($40 HDs) and Mike ($6) gave HDs to recognize their respective wedding anniversaries in August. Doug gave $25 to recognize his daughter going off to high school and not having to carry the fine pot anymore. 

We were really happy to have had such an engaging meeting and we hope to see you with us in the future!

Tour de Pier 2018 Recap

DeAnn, Rick, Suzanne, Craig, Steve, and Mike ready to rack some bikes at the 2018 Tour de Pier

DeAnn, Rick, Suzanne, Craig, Steve, and Mike ready to rack some bikes at the 2018 Tour de Pier

We were all out in force on Sunday, May 20th, participating in another great Tour de Pier at the beautiful Manhattan Beach Pier. Our club provided a great community service by parking and guarding all the bikes and strollers brought to the event, which numbered in the hundreds yet again!

The event itself raised thousands of dollars for cancer research and we were so honored to have played our role for another year. If you have interest in making an impact on your community while also having a great time with a group of civic minded individuals, we hope you'll consider coming to one of our meetings or joining the club!