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Westmont's Christmas tree lighting.

Westmont.edu

Westmont's Christmas tree lighting.


Tree-Lightings, Web Hackings, and Coral Casino-ings

With Internet A-Buzzing and Staurways A-Opening, Montecito Prepares for the Holidays


Westmont College will hold their sixth annual tree lighting on Wednesday, November 28, 5 p.m., on Kerrwood Lawn. The college’s Student Association determines who lights the tree and their names are kept secret, even from Montage, until that very electric moment. If you want to know who holds the spark this year, don some mittens and attend the event, which is open to the public.

In addition to lighting the natural 150-foot redwood growing on Kerrwood Lawn, the college will provide warm apple cider at the event and the Westmont Gospel Choir will sing traditional Christmas carols. Westmont does such a good job of warming up the holiday spirit, their Third Annual Christmas Festival has just sold out.



PT BARNUM WAS WRONG: According to Scott Craig, Westmont’s PR director, the Christian university has been the recipient some unwanted national publicity this week. On Tuesday, the Washington Post‘s website linked to a PC World article that reported Westmont’s website had been hacked into, along with Al Gore’s website climatecrisis.net.

Westmont University's website
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Westmont.edu

Westmont University’s website

The complex hacking plot involves an attempt to boost web traffic through spam. Craig says that the college has no reason to believe that the web hacking compromised any personal information, but nonetheless, Westmont’s IT managers are now transferring to a new content management system. Going on the P. T. Barnum theory that any publicity is good publicity, Montage asked Craig if he thought the Washington Post mention was a gift.

He responded, without humor, that the whole episode was no gift at all. “Even though we’ve been mentioned in the Washington Post through the article in PC World, this has been anything but a gift. It’s been more of a headache to our IT staff.”



STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN? Coral Casino manager Kevin Speer reported that at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, November 27, the long-lost stairs-to-the-sand at the beach club have been reopened. Approximately three years ago the beach staircase, used by members for beach access, was closed down for minor repairs.

One of the stairways near the Coral Casino.
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J'Amy Brown

One of the stairways near the Coral Casino.

What was initially thought to be an up-keeping chore turned into an extensive seawall project and the stairs have been closed ever since. As a matter of fact, it’s been closed so long, even the technology has changed. Members once had to carry a key for the back gate access, but now they can gain entry via ultramodern bio-monitored fingerprint identification.

A public beach ramp that is west of the Coral Casino is scheduled to be opened in January.



CASINO MEMBERSHIP FREEZE: Montage has been told memberships for the Coral Casino will remain frozen until the end of January. According to Erinn Lynch, a spokesperson for Ty Warner Hotels and Resorts, the long-awaited membership packages are still being streamlined.

We are seeing if there are ways to incorporate other Ty Warner properties, like the Four Seasons New York and Las Ventanas in Mexico, into the mix. We are hoping to get packets of information to the interest list by the end of January.”

The refurbished pool portion of the club reopened for members in October.



PUTTING ON THE DOG: Who puts the dog on better than Snoopy? This weekend he’s back on the ice again for five performances of It’s Christmas, Snoopy! on Ice. The professional ice-skating show is performed live on the Arlington stage and is the brainchild of Montecito resident Jill Schulz, who knows a thing or two about the Peanuts gang.

Snoopy on Ice!
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Snoopy on Ice!

Jill is the daughter of Peanut‘s creator Charles Schulz and she is the ice show’s producer, which features some Montecito residents as actors. The costumes are extravagant and the production is playful, so good grief, Montage readers, don’t miss this family fun treat.

It’s at the Arlington theater on both Saturday, December 1, and Sunday, December 2, and tickets can be obtained through Ticketmaster or snoopyiceshow.com.

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