Merry Christmas – and check out Santa’s cool, new ride!

We give presents, but time and love might be treasured above all. In a year full of divisiveness, we celebrate togetherness today, whether it’s with a traditional holiday meal or a spectacular ride along Orange County’s coast.

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) lands on the sand in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) lands on the sand in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) and elf Samantha Divis, 10, get Sunshine, a Great Dane, onto a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) and elf Samantha Divis, 10, get Sunshine, a Great Dane, onto a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Sunshine, a Great Dane, rides in the sidecar of a 2001 BMW R1200C motorcycle with Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Sunshine, a Great Dane, rides in the sidecar of a 2001 BMW R1200C motorcycle with Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) elf Samantha Divis, 10, and Sunshine, a Great Dane, pose for a photo in a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) takes directions from elf Samantha Divis, 10, on a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Santa (Tim Connaghan of the Kringle Group) takes directions from elf Samantha Divis, 10, on a 2001 BMW R1200C sidecar motorcycle in Huntington Beach. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

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Credits: Art direction by Karen Kelso, Orange County Register/SCNG. Dog provided by Celestial Great Danes, motorcycle courtesy of Shawn Boeker and special thanks to the city of Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach Marine Safety division and Mark D’Ambrosio.

 

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Police ask for public’s help to find driver who struck, killed woman in Huntington Beach

HUNTINGTON BEACH >> Police Wednesday sought the public’s help in identifying the driver of a vehicle that struck and killed a 53-year-old woman in Huntington Beach.

Tina Boring of Huntington Beach was struck about 12:30 a.m. on Nov. 29 as she walked in the area of Seapoint Street and Palm Avenue, according to Huntington Beach police.

RELATED STORY: Huntington Beach police investigate hit-and-run after woman found dead in street

The vehicle, which had been heading north on Seapoint Street, initially was driven back to the location, but then left the scene, its driver failing to render or summon aid, police said.

A passing motorist saw Boring down in the roadway about 10 minutes after she was struck and called police.

The vehicle that hit her is believed to be a light-colored, possibly silver, late-model Range Rover Sport.

“The suspect vehicle possibly sustained front end/hood damage from the impact,” according to a police statement.

Anyone with information about the collision was urged to call the investigator handling the case at 714-536-5670 or jpage@hbpd.org. During non-business hours, calls should be directed to 714-960-8825.

Read more about Police ask for public’s help to find driver who struck, killed woman in Huntington Beach This post was shared via Orange County Register’s RSS Feed. Orange County Shredding Service

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Huntington Beach homebuying takes slight dip in first quarter

Homebuying in Huntington Beach in 2017’s first half could not keep pace with countywide sales activity.

Using CoreLogic data, we compared sales patterns from the six months ended in June vs. the first half of 2016.

Sales in Huntington Beach fell as 1,038 residences sold through June vs. 1,055 in 2016. That’s a loss of 1.6 percent vs. a 2.2 percent gain countywide.

Neighborhood trends in Huntington Beach from the CoreLogic report:

Huntington Beach ZIP code 92646 — 346 homes sold in the period vs. 341 a year ago. That’s a sales gain of 1.5 percent. Median selling price of $653,500 vs. $680,000 a year ago, a loss of 3.9 percent.

Huntington Beach ZIP 92647 — 193 homes sold vs. 200 a year ago. That’s a sales loss of -3.5 percent. Median of $680,750 vs. $651,000 a year ago, a gain of 4.6 percent.

Huntington Beach ZIP 92648 — 280 homes sold vs. 271 a year ago. That’s a sales gain of 3.3 percent. Median of $900,000 vs. $880,000 a year ago, a gain of 2.3 percent.

Huntington Beach ZIP 92649 — 219 homes sold vs. 243 a year ago. That’s a sales loss of -9.9 percent. Median of $755,000 vs. $730,000 a year ago, a gain of 3.4 percent.

Here are six countywide trends to ponder, first half 2017 vs. first half 2016 …

1. Prices rose in 70 of 83 Orange County ZIPs. Sales rose in 50 of the 83.

2. In the 27 least expensive ZIPs — median price at $597,500 and below -– 5,258 homes sold. That’s up 0.8 percent.

3. In the 27 priciest ZIPs — median price of $755,000-plus -– 6,431 homes sold. That’s up 5.7 percent.

4. In nine ZIPs with medians above $1 million, sales totaled 1,256 homes, up 7.8 percent.

5. In 16 beach-close ZIPs, 3,158 homes sold, up 3.27 percent.

6. There were 10 ZIPs with median prices under $500,000 with total sales of 1,799 homes. A year ago, 18 ZIPs had medians under $500,000 with 2,793 sales.

DID YOU SEE? It’s been 10 years since Orange County’s housing bubble … or … Half of us rent: L.A.-Orange County homeownership rate 2nd lowest in U.S.

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Wish You Were Here: Myanmar’s mystique

  • Moken (sea Gypsy) boys flying in unison to spear fish.

    Moken (sea Gypsy) boys flying in unison to spear fish.

  • WUWH

  • David Heath

    David Heath

  • Girl selling watermelon on moving train that circles the city of Yangon.

    Girl selling watermelon on moving train that circles the city of Yangon.

  • ThinkstockPhotos-504906360

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  • Fisherman skimming the water early one morning on Taung Tha Man Lake, Amarapura in Mandalay.

    Fisherman skimming the water early one morning on Taung Tha Man Lake, Amarapura in Mandalay.

  • David-Heath_Golden-Moment_RGB

  • Sunset over Ananda and Thabanyu Temples in Bagan.

    Sunset over Ananda and Thabanyu Temples in Bagan.

  • Monks on U Bein Bridge

    Monks on U Bein Bridge

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The images are hypnotic: fishing boats in the early-morning sun, pagodas gleaming in the afternoon light, children grinning at a window. Huntington Beach photographer David Heath captured them during 18 visits to the Southeast Asian country of Myanmar, also called Burma, an odyssey by canoe, plane, boat, train and foot. The result was his new book, “Burma, An Enchanted Spirit,” a beautiful coffee-table volume that explores the mystique of this star-crossed nation. “After decades of military rule, the civilian government has won the recent elections, and the doors are now wide open for tourists to enjoy this magical land,” he says. “But don’t wait too long as it is changing rapidly.” As told to Rosemary McClure

 

WHY MYANMAR?

Myanmar is one of the most exotic, remote cultures left on the planet. With its pristine landscapes and amazing pagodas, it’s a fascinating experience and a trip back in time. The Burmese people are gracious, friendly, resilient and humorous, and love sharing their culture with people from other countries.

BEST BITE 

Burmese cuisine includes a variety of salads, which typically have one major ingredient such as rice, wheat or rice noodles and a variety of vegetables. These salads are considered the typical fast food of Myanmar, although they look like a gourmet work of art. Some of the best restaurants in Yangon include the popular Green Elephant; the fine-dining restaurant Padonmar near the governor’s residence and Taing Yin Thar, where you’ll find authentic Burmese food. In Mandalay, try Unique Myanmar and A Little Bit of Mandalay.

 

AFTER DARK 

The best nightlife is found in major cities such as Yangon or Mandalay. There are traditional marionette shows, which are very entertaining. For late-night shoppers, there are evening markets, including the Kannar Night Market in Yangon, where you will find a large variety of local items. In Mandalay, try the Zay Cho Night Market.

SECRET TIP 

Myanmar still operates predominantly on cash, although many of the hotels now take credit cards. The availability of tourist ATMs is limited, so it is best to bring cash; the U.S. dollar is widely accepted. Proprietors prefer crisp new $100 bills and may refuse your bills if they are damaged.

BUY IN

The best shopping is from locals and tribes in the small villages, where you can find handmade textiles, beautiful wood carvings and lovely jewelry. Specific places to try include the sprawling Bogyoke Aung San Market (also known by its old British name, Scott Market) in Yangon and the Pho La Pyae Handicraft workshop in Mandalay. Myanmar is known for lacquer-ware, silver and brassware. It is also the largest exporter of jade, sapphires and rubies in
the world.

TIME IS RIGHT 

The best time to visit Myanmar is in the dry season, October to March. The hottest time of the year is between March and June when temperatures can top 104 degrees. Most visitors come between November and February, so accommodations can be in short supply then.  After being isolated for so long, the country is now starting to gear up for tourists, and new hotels are springing up.

 

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Colorado man to be arraigned for 1994 cold case murder in Huntington Beach

HUNTINGTON BEACH – A Colorado man will be arraigned Monday, May 15, for the cold case murder of two men in downtown Huntington Beach in 1994.

The Huntington Beach Police Department reopened the case last year and sought the Orange County Cold Case Homicide Task Force for assistance.

With newly developed evidence, Lamberto Ricci Castillo, 64, was arrested on April 27 in Alamosa, where he lived, and was charged with two felony counts of murder, according to a press release from the police department and Orange County District Attorney issued Sunday, May 14.

Castillo is accused of verbally confronting Chen “Cosmo” Maui Blanchard and Kenny Paul Sommer, both 23, as they were socializing near Main Street and Orange Avenue on the evening of March 31, 1994. Castillo is accused of walking away after the argument and returning to the scene around 10:15 p.m. with a handgun.

An off-duty officer only witnessed the argument. Castillo is accused of shooting Blanchard and Sommer several times and fleeing. Officers responded to multiple calls of shots fired in the area and found the victims on the ground. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

Further details on the case will be revealed at a press conference 2 p.m. Monday, May 15 at City Hall next to the city council chambers at 2000 Main St. in Huntington Beach.

Sentence enhancements for Castillo include two counts of the use of a firearm. His arraignment is scheduled at 10 a.m. Monday, May 15, at Department CJ-1, Central Jail in Santa Ana.

The maximum sentence would be life in state prison.

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