MB Weekly 12/01/2022


Take A Look Below For 20 Obscure
And Interesting Facts About Manhattan Beach

1. As of the 2010 census, the population was 35,135, and in 2019 the population was estimated to be 35,183.
2. Manhattan Beach is one of the three Beach Cities, along with Hermosa Beach and Redondo Beach within the South Bay region of Los Angeles County.
3. The community is known for a long beach stretching approximately 2.1 miles (3.4 km) and roughly 450 feet (140 m) wide.
4. The climate is unusually moderate because of Manhattan Beach’s proximity to the Pacific Ocean, with an average year-round high temperature of 69.1 °F (20.6 °C) and an average year-round low of 56.4 °F (13.6 °C).
5. The sandy coastal area was likely inhabited by the Tongva tribe of Native Americans. Archeological work in the nearby Chowigna excavation show evidence of inhabitants as far back as 7,100 years ago.
6. The Tongva Village of Ongovanga was located near neighbouring Redondo Beach.
7. It has been mentioned at the Historical Society that the location of a portion of current day Manhattan Beach may have been used as a Native American burial ground.
8. In the mid-18th century, the Portolá expedition was the first European land exploration of present-day California. It traveled north from San Diego to the San Gabriel Valley, Los Angeles Basin, San Fernando Valley, Monterey Bay, and San Francisco Bay.
9. In 1784, the Spanish Crown deeded Rancho San Pedro, a tract of over 75,000 acres (300 km2), to soldier Juan José Domínguez. It included what is today the entire Port of Los Angeles; San Pedro, Los Angeles; Harbor City, Los Angeles; Wilmington, Los Angeles; Carson; Compton; the Dominguez Hills; Lomita; the Palos Verdes Peninsula; Redondo Beach; Hermosa Beach; Manhattan Beach; and Torrance.
10. In 1863, a Scottish immigrant, Sir Robert Burnett, purchased Rancho Sausal Redondo and Rancho Aguaje de la Centinela from Avila’s heirs for $33,000. Ten years later in 1873, Burnett leased the ranch to a Canadian, Daniel Freeman (not the American of the same name, who was the first to file a claim under the Homestead Act of 1862).
11. Burnett returned to Scotland. Freeman moved his wife and three children onto the ranch and started growing various crops. On May 4, 1885, Freeman bought the ranch from Burnett for $140,000. At some point after this the location was informally called “Shore Acres.”
12. George H. Peck owned the land that became part of the north section of Manhattan Beach. A coin flip decided the town’s name. Around 1902, the beach suburb was named “Manhattan” after developer Stewart Merrill’s home, the New York City borough of Manhattan.
13. “Beach” was appended to the city’s name, in 1927, at the behest of the postmaster.
14. Upon the city’s incorporation in 1912, Peck divided out a two-block area for minority residents on the beachfront. The Bruce family bought some of the area and developed it into the first beach resort for Black Americans in southern California, Bruce’s Beach.
15. In the 1920s, the Ku Klux Klan began violently harassing the resort’s visitors, the Bruce family, and four other Black families that bought lots. In 1924, the city used eminent domain to seize the land from the Black property owners under the pretense of building a park.
16. In 2021 California Governor Gavin Newsom, ordered by law to begin procedures for immediate restitution of property to descendants of the family.
17. The land in Manhattan Beach was formerly sand dunes. During the 1920s and 1930s, Kuhn Brothers Construction Company leveled uneven sandy sites and some excess sand was sold and shipped to Waikiki, Hawaii, to convert their reef and rock beach into a sandy beach.
18. The sand was also used to build the Los Angeles Coliseum and portions of the Pacific Coast Highway.
19. The McMartin preschool trials, allegedly an example of day care sex abuse hysteria, started with investigations of a Manhattan Beach preschool in 1983. The trials ran from 1987 to 1990 and resulted in no convictions. HBO dramatized this case in the Emmy-winning Indictment: The McMartin Trial, which was partially filmed in Manhattan Beach.
20. The Manhattan Beach Historical Society is now in charge of preserving the history of the city.

The Faces of Manhattan Beach
Meet Andrew Lautenbach-DeMeter

General Manager Of Mercado

–We opened in September 2019.

–Attention to detail and hospitality focus.




86% of MB Weekly readers feel that there should be some level of immunity for crimes by people while being trafficked. Do you agree or disagree?

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by Steve Revel

Nando Trattoria in Manhattan Beach is an actual family-run small business. With a dedication to guests and community, they seek to deliver quality cuisine using natural ingredients and to provide an exceptional dining experience via its experienced and attentive staff. The food at Nando is both inspiring and original. It reminds me that if I never, ever go into another chain restaurant for the rest of my life, I would be pretty happy.


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A cool living room in Manhattan Beach. Share your photos with thousands and thousands of your Manhattan Beach neighbors.

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The Faces of Manhattan Beach
Meet Andrew Weir

Stroyke Properties Group


Do you have a secret talent?
–Hand Flute, aka Hand Whistle or Hand Ocarina
Do you believe that we evolved from animals?
Have you ever had a bad breakup that you haven’t shared with anybody?
Do you enjoy drinking black coffee?
Are you afraid of the dark?
Are you a picky eater?
Do you have any hobbies?
Can you speak another language?
Have you smoked at least one cigarette in the last year?



Manhattan Beach Guided Walking Tour: WATCH

People From Manhattan Beach

Notable Business People

Pictured Jordan Belfort

Jordan Belfort: author of The Wolf of Wall Street.
John Bollinger: financial author, developer of the Bollinger Bands analysis method.
The McMartin Family: operators of a pre-school in the city, were falsely accused of sexual child abuse in the longest and most expensive criminal trial in American history.

Reader Questions To
MB Mayor Steve Napolitano

Q: Dear Mayor, I’m told that you were opposed to a proposal made by one of the City Council to hire private security guards in the downtown area while the Police Department is finally trying to staff up fully. Why have you opposed, Mayor? —- Darren T., Manhattan Beach

A: It wasn’t just me who opposed it, it was opposed by all but one Councilmember and our Police Chief as well. As explained by the Chief at our last council meeting, Beverly Hills is the only city doing this due to several circumstances unique to that city that we don’t have here. It’s also very expensive and raises a number of liability issues and they would have no authority to issue citations or make arrests like police do. And don’t forget that we currently have private security folks downtown to act as added eyes and ears for our police – they’re the folks you typically see at our big public events and we’ve contracted for a number of them to act as roving “ambassadors” downtown and the north end. The only real difference between our “ambassadors” and armed private security is that the latter can carry a gun. That’s nice, but as Mayor Pro Tem Montgomery pointed out, plenty of banks have private armed security and they still get robbed. And as much as I want added security, I’m not looking for a shootout in the middle of our downtown, especially with folks with less training than police officers have for that situation. Instead, we’ve increased our bike and foot patrols downtown with real police who can issue citations and make arrests when needed. And that’s where I’d rather spend the money – on real police instead of armed security with who knows what kind of background or training. In fact, recently I brought forward and Council agreed to add 5 additional police over hires to increase our force. And as we search for those officers, which does take time, I made the suggestion the other night that instead of private armed guards, we should contact the Sheriff’s Department and see about contracting with them for additional officers for the next several months until we fill our own positions. It could be more cost effective than private armed security and more effective overall given that they can make arrests and issue citations too. We’re waiting for a report back from staff on that and hopefully we can move forward with what I consider a much better solution than private armed security.

Send Your Questions To
The Mayor Of Manhattan Beach

The Mayor of Manhattan Beach, Steve Napolitano, has generously agreed to write an “Ask the Mayor” monthly column exclusively for MB Weekly. Please send your questions to: MBWeekly@TimeWire.net

By Darby Winston


I visited a burger joint called Smashburger in the Manhattan Village mall for the second time, and honestly, I don’t know how this place can remain in business. Both times I have visited, there has been no one there. In my opinion, the Turkey burger was good but overpriced; at over $8, the French fries were extraordinarily forgettable, and they wanted to charge $7 for a slight chocolate shake which I passed on. The staff was pathetic, even by fast food standards. They seem apathetic and inhospitable. If this business is there in six months, I’ll be surprised.

Food: B  •  Service: F  •  Value: C


Russ Lesser

Russ Lesser was a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve’s Finance Corps from 1964-70. While attending college, he worked for the U.S. Post Office from 1960-64. Lesser’s ties to Manhattan Beach are strong, having served in the City Council (1978-1986), including two terms as mayor (1981 and 1984-85).


Manhattan Beach Unified School District will be the region’s first “No Place for Hate” school district. The district will join the four No Place for Hate elementary schools. Upon completion of program requirements, Pennekamp Elementary, Manhattan Beach Middle School, and Mira Costa High School will get the same recognition from the ADL of Los Angeles, making MBUSD the first school district in the ADL region to have all schools execute the program. ADL LA encompasses Riverside, San Bernardino, and Kern counties.


Veteran Financial Planner Dave Harris.

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Corrie Zupo in front of her El Segundo home. USC’s Environmental Justice Research Lab is studying the impacts of hydrogen sulfide exposure among El Segundo residents after the July 2021 Hyperion spill, starting with a survey. The goal, per the resident who initiated this with USC, Corrie Zupo, is not just about El Segundo and Hyperion, but to urge the California Air Resources Board to update its standard for safe H2S exposure of 3 parts per million for one hour that hasn’t been changed since 1969.


** “Since our elections are now held in November with the general elections, I believe our hometown elections are a bygone relic of yesteryear with our City Council elections taking on the characteristics of partisan elections including Political Action Committees, Independent Expenditures, Union Endorsements and, of course, local or regional party endorsements. I do think we will continue to see qualified candidates being elected to our City Council. Hopefully, we will see greater community engagement in City matters.” —- Mark Burton, former MB Mayor

** I haven’t been a candidate in the last two City Council elections. However, here is my most important lesson learned as a former two-term MB Councilmember/Mayor: As a two-term Councilmember/Mayor the most important campaign lesson learned was to go door to door (knock on as many doors as possible) and listen to our residents’ concerns. This is essential not only to be successful in the election, but also when elected and serving. Our residents’ input is imperative in improving the quality of life and public safety of our community, and in fostering open, inclusive and transparent government. —- Wayne Powell, former MB Mayor

** Running in this election was a tremendous learning experience, far above anything you can learn in a class. Hands-on, upfront exposure with no safety net while people judge your knowledge, sincerity, and leadership qualities is what you sign up for. The responsibility you share in meeting the public’s expectations based on the time they are willing to listen to you weighs heavily on your delivery. It’s exhilarating. A vote is such a sacred instrument for Americans. The most challenging part of this election was the need for more focus on new ideas. The political infighting overwhelmed the tone given the new well-organized, funded voices of partisan groups. As a result, most forums needed to address or provide more time to expose the facts facing our community today comprehensively. It was frustrating not to be able to address many issues foundationally, given my decades of experience. This election was about telling your base what they wanted to hear rather than what needed to be said. I didn’t do that and paid dearly for it. Nonetheless, the voters got it right, and our authentic modern beach culture prevailed against the pedantic worn-out themes of partisanship. I pledge my part to keep that alive. —- Stewart Fournier, MB city council candidate

** The best person doesn’t always run. The best person doesn’t always get elected. —- Phil Cook, veteran financial advisor


“Parental burnout in Manhattan Beach.”



Please share your reply with thousands and thousands of your neighbors in Manhattan Beach and surrounding South Bay communities.

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1. ** Legal Essentials Workshop for NEW and ESTABLISHED Businesses being hosted by DeAnn Chase, long-time resident and founder of Chase Law Group, on December 9, 2022, at the Manhattan Beach Library from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Early Bird registration is $47 and ends on December 5. Bring your questions and your legal documents for DeAnn to discuss. Topics will include the right business entity, whether or not to trademark, independent contractors and employees, and much more! Register Today: bit.ly/bizowners2023

2. ** Yes! Daylight saving time should be made permanent. —- Gary T. Morton, Manhattan Beach

3. ** Anyone looking for a housekeeper? Ana has been with us doing weekly service for years. She is available now, so call or text if you are searching. The phone number is +1 (310) 910-2459. —- Mandy Bullard, Manhattan Beach

4. ** Does anyone have a wonderful handyman? Right now, we need someone to help us with some wind damage; the antenna falling off the roof, and patio heater needs to be removed from the patio to the front for trash pickup. Thank you! Call Sheila (310)741-6699 —- Sheila Ennis

5. ** November 3rd, between 11 pm and midnight, a coyote jumped a backyard fence and attacked a small dog (John and 10th Street MB). The dog was able to get away from the coyote and enter the home through a doggy door. Animal control and the vet have confirmed that it was a coyote. —- Vikki McMahon, Manhattan Beach

6. ** Audi cruises by to fill our recycle bins to the brim with HIS TRASH. This is about as trashy (yes, pun intended) as it gets. At 10 pm last night, a man in an Audi stopped by our walk street alley to pile an entire trunk full of his “recycling” (in trash bags) in our newly emptied recycling containers. This is just SO RUDE. Going to hope that someone recognizes him and lets him know how un-cool (and beyond that ILLEGAL) this is. If you know him, please send him my way to reclaim his belongings. —- Alex Powers, Manhattan Beach

7. ** I went to vote yesterday at Jocelyn center and pulled out my driver’s license at the initial check-in. The check-in lady said, “oh, you don’t need that; we don’t look at IDs.” I was shocked. Then I went to check in and register, and the person checking me in said, “they were not given directions to ask for voter ID.” —- Linda B., Manhattan Beach

8. ** The Kale salad at Slay Italian is inspiring! —- Renee P., Manhattan Beach

9. ** It’s truly disappointing to see the EasyReader lose the trust of the community, and its focus on providing news to the community. —- Lee Phillips, Manhattan Beach

10. ** Wow! Multiple pages of type used to smear candidates for the Manhattan Beach school board running as the “Trifecta.” I assume that Easy Reader also spent hours combing through the backgrounds of the other three candidates, and they are incredibly squeaky-clean, therefore no story on them? —- Duane Plank, El Segundo

11. ** Cafe Rio Engagement Ring Theft Thursday Night, my engagement ring was stolen at Cafe Rio in Manhattan Beach. They have video footage of who did it and have tracked that person’s name down by their credit card they paid with and have turned this over to MBPD. A police report has been filed, and their department will pursue this. If you or someone you know is responsible for this theft, turn it in the MB Police Department, no questions asked. —- Sierra Power, Hermosa Beach

12. ** Shame on Easy Reader for once again publishing false information in your crappy newspaper. I stopped reading your newspaper after you published the Black Man Avenue article which was totally false (“Bruce family representative ticketed on ‘BLK MAN AVE,’” ER May 20, 2021) —- Julie Watts, Manhattan Beach

13. ** The Easy Reader article about the “Troubled Trifecta” is so one sided it doesn’t qualify as journalism —- Debra Geist, Manhattan Beach

14. ** I love the Kettle, but I’m not a big fan of restaurants being open on holidays like this. Servers, cooks, and staff miss at least a part of the day with family. I’ve worked all 3 of those jobs in that industry. I know some employees aren’t of the same opinion, so to each their own, I guess. —- Brendan Lenehan, Manhattan Beach

15. ** Are you ready for your Last Waltz? Amazon.com

16. ** Some years ago, I had a difficult surgery that left me with a permanent limp. As a result, I use a walking stick to help my posture. So often, as I am approaching a doorway, I am delighted by the kindness of strangers (of all ages) who rush to open the door for me. It’s a simple thing, but each time it happens, I am filled with gratitude and it brightens my day. —- Clyde W., Manhattan Beach

17. ** Mail-in ballots. I don’t like them. There is too much opportunity for fraud. The registrars are NOT equipped to count them. I wish they had never started it! —- Barb Woodward, Manhattan Beach

18. ** Does anyone know why the Chase Bank at Manhattan Village Mall is temporarily closed? I need to access my Safety Deposit box, and when I went today, it just said that they were temp closed and gave no reason or opening date. —- Carina Luwisch, Manhattan Beach

19. ** Congratulations to all the winning candidates. My faith in the tone of the message gives me so much pride as a Manhattan Beach citizen. This town sets the tone for the adaptation of class and distinction. —- Stewart Fournier, Manhattan Beach

20. ** Alarming! According to exit polls, 63% of voters ages 18 to 29 voted for the left in the 2022 midterm elections. That means a majority of Gen Z support destructive left-wing policies, such as socialism, open borders, student loan forgiveness, higher taxes, and late-term abortion. —- Carly P., Manhattan Beach

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