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Author Astgik Khatchatryan

  • Astgik Khatchatryan

    Associate Editor

    Hailing originally from the Valley, and even more originally from Armenia, Khatchatryan joined Orange Coast after working as an editorial intern for the magazine. Armed with a degree in literary journalism from UC Irvine, her goal is to make everyone else’s job easier, thus becoming the most-loved staff member in the office. She enjoys surfing the glorious Orange County coastline, playing ukulele, and performing improvisational comedy—not all at once, though that would be something.

 

Speaker of Note: Umi Garrett

What qualifies a 13-year-old to give a TED talk? How about being globally hailed as a piano prodigy since her 2009 appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show”? Garrett, who lives in Aliso Viejo, already has released two albums, played with multiple symphonies, been named a Young Steinway Artist, and won competitions in Japan, Hungary, and New York. Read more...

Stand-Up Guy: Amir K

The 33-year-old comic is making a name for himself on the SoCal circuit after touring for several years with Maz Jobrani, a fellow Iranian-born performer well known on the scene. He has appeared on the big screen (a cameo role in the 2012 Oscar-winning film “Argo”) and the small (starring in the MTV prank show “Jerks With Cameras”). The former Orange resident first took to the stage when the housing bubble burst, ending his job as a real estate appraiser in Huntington Beach. He lost everything but his sense of humor. Read more...

Legends: Princess Charming

JoAnn Dean Killingsworth is a favorite at Capriana, a retirement community in Brea. She walks through the art room where her paintings are currently on exhibit, and then turns down the hall toward her apartment. Staff members and fellow residents who pass all have a kind word or friendly greeting for the 90-year-old. As she nears her door, two housekeepers emerge. Read more...

Person of Interest: Chalkaholic

Between teaching art classes at Newhart Middle School and working on her popular watercolor paintings, the 58-year-old Mission Viejo resident and former gallery owner puts pastel to pavement, creating massive, temporary works that easily can take as long as 20 hours to complete. Read more...

Person of Interest: Restless Rider

She has been one of the top three riders at Los Alamitos Race Course for the past four years, and is considered one of the best female jockeys in Southern California—though the 26-year-old Cypress woman says she doesn’t keep track of her stats. Still, the 5-foot-4 Charlton is competitive by nature, and says her most vivid memory of her first victory was of galloping past the finish line. Read more...

She’s Baaack! A Second Take for “Friday” YouTube Phenom Rebecca Black

Like many who watched the viral music video “Friday” in 2011, my reaction was a mix of shock, horror, and amusement. It was so hilariously bad that, years later, my husband and I sometimes ironically belt it to each other when Friday rolls around. (We we we so excited, you know?) Read more...

Devoted Bearder

When the Costa Mesa resident and a few friends founded the Gentlemen’s Beard and Mustache Coalition nearly four years ago, they had two goals: to be involved in the sport of bearding, and to create a networking group of like-minded individuals. Read more...

Orange County's Professional Princess

While everyone else at Medieval Times was staring at the jousting knights, a teenage Pellegrini spent her first visit with her eyes on the throne. Read more...

Japanese Dollar Store Adventures

I don't know what I've been doing with my life since Daiso Japan opened in Irvine's Heritage Plaza last year, but let me tell you—I've been missing out! Our art director Mindy Benham took a few of us on a field trip there a couple of weeks ago, and now we're obsessed. The variety of products is dizzying, and we could have stayed there for hours looking at each item, trying to decipher what everything was (a lot of the labels are in Japanese, and the guessing game is just part of the fun) and filling our baskets with the most random and cutest merchandise. Read more...

Quotes: Rick ‘Rockin’ Fig’ Fignetti

The 56-year-old Surf City legend, announcer to some of the sport’s biggest competitions, is preparing for his 20th year as the voice of the US Open of Surfing, July 20 through 28. Holder of several West Coast and national titles, and a Surfing Walk of Fame honoree, Fignetti still competes, while also running his Main Street board shop, Rockin’ Fig’s Surf Headquarters. Read more...

OC Guides

Guides

OC Guides
  • O.C.’s Best: Tiki Drinks

    Though some regard them as overly cloying concoctions, tiki cocktails such as mai tais and zombies are enjoying a resurgence in Orange County. Craft bartenders layer the rum-based drinks with multiple spirits and spices to create beguiling and complex potions. Here are five great places to get your tiki on. Read More
  • Neighborhood: Dana Point

    Perched above Pacific Coast Highway, Monarch Bay Plaza reflects the relaxed sophistication of its Dana Point neighborhood. In the Spanish-style mall with red tile roofs, ocean breezes blow through white stucco archways, and upscale-yet-casual boutiques and restaurants attract locals and tourists. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Vegan Breakfasts

    Veg-heads don’t just mow down bowls of granola and slam wheatgrass shots at the break of dawn. Most want to enjoy brunching on Sunday-Funday with everyone else. And because it can be hard to find tofu scrambles and dairy-free waffles, we’ve rounded up five local eateries that provide tasty vegan options to start the morning right. Read More
  • Best of 2014: Nutty Brûlée

    No one can resist breaking into the sugary crust of crème brûlée, and this one packs an extra surprise with its abundance of silky-smooth chocolate-hazelnut custard below—thanks to the addition of Nutella. This sinful dessert is incredibly rich and best shared with a friend. $8
    704 E. Balboa Blvd., Newport Beach, 949‑673‑7173, theslidingdoorcafe.com

    Read More
  • Best of 2014: Honey Bee Chicken

    You’ll fall in lust with the chicken pieces at BBQ Chicken at Diamond Jamboree in Irvine. Fried in olive oil for a crunchy exterior, they’re tossed in a sweet honey sauce making them all the more delicious. $11 to $21

    Read More

Style Stuff

  • It's a Charmed Life!

    Fashion Island's go-to beauty lounge, Blushington, is teaming up with jeweler Kendra Scott to launch her new Charm Bar Collection featuring a variety of charms, letters, symbols, and stones, on Friday, August 8 from 5:30-7:00 p.m. Read More
  • Hot Shop: Popping With Petals

    Petals and Pop would be at home in a Paris street scene. Blooms and foliage spill onto the sidewalk from old aluminum buckets and vintage German pickling jars. Inside, a floor-to-ceiling library ladder slides along the shelves of this flower and home goods store, providing access to vases, table linens, garden and kitchen tools, specialty chocolates, and cookbooks. Read More
  • Ruffle Some Feathers this Fourth of July!

    We're all familiar with the food truck craze, but now there's a new kind of truck to get excited about. Pekok Within Boutique is Orange County's first fashion truck to hit the streets. The peculiar name is intended to encourage customers to embrace the idea of peacocking, or "Pekoking": using fashion as a means to attract attention and distinguish oneself. The new business is taking part in the Fourth of July event at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort and Marina July 4th from noon to 10 p.m. and July 5th from 1 to 10 p.m. Read More
  • Here Come the Brides!

    Looking for wedding inspiration — something that will set you apart from the crowd? Then keep from 12 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 3, open. That's when Something Lovely Wedding returns to Orange County, with an impressive collection of more than 30 high-end wedding resources here in SoCal. Read More
  • Brea Mall is Home to O.C.'s Second Kiehl's Store

    In addition to getting a newly renovated mall, Brea now has bragging rights to a Kiehl's boutique. Elevating the skin and hair-care routines of loyal customers since 1851, Kiehl's chose The Brea Mall as the lucky landmark to expand the chain's presence, making it the second Orange County location (the other is at South Coast Plaza). Paying homage to Kiehl's East Village New York roots, the store brings a modern Big Apple apothecary to north county, blending antique fixtures with modern neon flair. Read More
 
 
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