These next few weeks are leading up to one of the most important elections in modern times.

I certainly would not tell anyone how to vote, although I would be happy to share my opinions if asked, of course.

But I hope that readers all appreciate how lucky we are to be given the opportunity to vote.

VIDEOS FOR OUR TROOPS — Keeping with our patriotic frame of mind, I recently learned of a project called Videos from HomeFront.

This volunteer community group of friends and family are asking anyone who has someone in the military overseas to contact Xena Erickson at (310) 862-1704.

She will direct them on how to proceed to record a message to their loved ones that would then be edited to include messages from 100 other families.

The final DVD would be returned in time to send the DVD to loved ones as an early holiday gift from our community showing how proud the community is of the contributions being made by our military and how much we miss them.

In addition to sending this message to all of the contributing families, Videos from HomeFront also wants to make the holidays a little bit friendlier for everyone by sending this DVD to all of the divisions in the four branches of the military.

Videos from HomeFront has targeted Tuesday, November 30th, as the deadline date for completion of the DVDs, so please get in touch today.

CORNERSTONE OPENING — At 9 a.m. Wednesday, November 3rd, Venice Chamber will assist Cornerstone Prep Middle School to “cut the ribbon” on a new school year at the Boys & Girls Club of Venice, 2232 Lincoln Blvd.

Cornerstone Prep Middle School is an extension of Cornerstone Prep Elementary School, a not-for-profit charter school approved by the Los Angeles Unified School District in 2002.

The middle school serves sixth and seventh grades and will be expanding to eighth grade next September.

Using the ocean to integrate its traditional curriculum, Cornerstone representatives say their innovative approach improves academic performance, makes learning fun, and deepens its sense of community within the school.

In support of its ocean theme, Cornerstone has a close academic alliance with the joint UCLA-USC, National Science Foundation-supported Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE)-West.

The Cornerstone program is tuition-free and uses the nationally-recognized “Success for All” program, developed by Johns Hopkins University, which is among the top research-based reading curricula available.

Cornerstone has small, culturally and economically diverse classes, where students receive individual attention.

Information, Peter Schoenfeld, principal, (310) 636-2774 or

VENICE CHAMBER MIXER — The Venice Chamber monthly mixer will be hosted by the Rose CafÈ, 220 Rose Avenue, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 27th.

At the Rose CafÈ, the food is terrific and the atmosphere is warm and friendly and you always run into someone that you know.

We hope you will come and bring all of your friends.

MURAL DEDICATION — A mural of a larger-than-life portrait of Venice founder Abbot Kinney will be dedicated by Councilwoman Cindy Miscikowski on North Venice Boulevard, west of the Canal Club, in conjunction with the Venice Centennial, Tuesday, November 9th.

The newly renovated Canal Club is at 2025 Pacific Ave., and its towering presence is easily visible from the street.

As part of the dedication, a patrons’ reception will be held, honoring Werner Scharf for funding the mural and for his various contributions to the life and culture of Venice.

Local artist Stephen Douglas will also be honored for his donation to the Venice Centennial efforts. Douglas has given the rights to a limited edition print of “Rose to Windward,” an original art piece depicting a panoramic view of Venice Beach from an ocean-based perspective.

The reception, co-sponsored by the Canal Club and James Beach restaurants, will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Reception tickets are a $50 donation per person and include a signed copy of “Rose to Windward” for every two tickets purchased.

Information or event tickets, David Buchanan, Venice Centennial co-chair, (310) 822-0024 or

LIONS GOLF TOURNEY — The Venice-Marina Lions Club will hold its 21st Annual Golf Tournament Monday, October 25th, at Seal Beach Naval Course in Cypress.

Information, Jann Brauer, (310) 822-0074 or

LAPD PROMOTION — Los Angeles Police Department deputy chief Michel Moore was promoted at a badge ceremony Tuesday, October 5th, at the Museum of Tolerance and assigned to head LAPD Operations-West Bureau.

It was very moving to hear from so many of his supporters and friends, including LAPD chief Bill Bratton.

We will miss LAPD deputy chief Lee Carter but know that Moore will bring his own special leadership style to keep Pacific Area one of the safest communities in Los Angeles.

NIKE SPONSORS — Nike, Inc., sponsored Nike Community Involvement Day Friday, October 15th.

Nike staff assisted the Venice Family Clinic with cleanup, landscaping, and other much-needed activities.

We would like to thank Celeste Alleyne, Nike director of community relations, and all of the Nike staff for their generosity and continued support of the clinic and our community.

PLAYWRIGHT SOUGHT — A group of residents in the Oakwood area of Venice is looking for a playwright and a videographer to help them put together a performance on the “History of Oakwood” as part of the Venice Centennial.

Anyone interested in volunteering, with a possibility of a stipend, and great exposure, should e-mail his or her biography to

This is your chance to bring attention to the strong cultural background of our community and to showcase your talents.

KAREN LAMP HONORED —Venice Family Clinic assistant medical director Karen Lamp was honored for her work in women’s health by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation at a Wednesday, October 6th, reception sponsored by Lladro Center and Maserati of Beverly Hills

She is clinical director for the clinic Women’s Health Programs, including its prenatal program, family planning program, and women’s cancer detection program.