News Briefs

Louise Rishoff

Venue changed for former Chamber head’s memorial service

The location of the memorial service for former Chamber of Commerce President Chris Hasselquist has been changed to Bluffs Park. The service will begin at 2 p.m. and the family has invited the public to attend.

Bluffs Park is located at 24250 Pacific Coast Highway. More information can be obtained by calling Jeanne Hasselquist at 398.0309 or Gus Hasselquist at 457.7733

Calvin Nursery closes

The Calvin Nursery, Malibu’s first garden center, has gone out of business after half a century. The property on Pacific Coast Highway, north of Pepperdine, has been sold to a builder.

From the beginning, the nursery’s clientele included the first Hollywood celebrities to move to Malibu and, more recently, a number of rock and roll stars.

The business was started in 1953 by Joe and Patty Calvin and has been run by the family continuously ever since. Joe Calvin was the lead trombonist with the Les Brown and Jimmy Dorsey bands before joining Spike Jones and the City Slickers, where he met Patty Calvin. She and her identical twin sister, Gloria, danced and sang with the zany troupe, one of the most popular touring bands of the ’40s and early ’50s.

When the group broke up, the Calvins went into the nursery business in Malibu. The sisters were in charge for a number of years, but after Patty Calvin’s death, Gloria and an adopted sister, Polly, took over. With their retirement, Casey Calvin, the daughter of Joe and Patty Calvin, became the owner and manager.

In the early days, the garden center and Wylie’s bait shop on Pacific Coast Highway near Topanga Canyon, were the favorite hangouts of locals. But Calvin’s was also the haunt of many cats of uncertain pedigree that the family adopted over the years.

Nothing remains on the site today, except a scattering of empty sheds and a trailer in which Joe Calvin lived for many years after his wife’s death.

Industry members return to Malibu for award season screenings for film

The tradition of film screenings in Malibu for members of the film industry who reside here or in nearby locations, an annual rite of January at the New Malibu Theatre, was scrubbed for the current award season by the movie house’s destruction by fire last year. But the tradition resumes on Thursday (Jan. 5) at Pepperdine’s Smothers Theatre with a showing of Director Rob Marshall’s “Memoirs Of A Geisha” at 7:30 p.m., with admission by presentation of Guild or other film industry membership cards.

A second screening will be held at half past noon on Jan. 11 at the Elkins Theatre on the Pepperdine campus adjacent to the Smothers Theatre.

Rishoff drops out of Assembly race

The battle to replace outgoing 41st District Assemblymember Fran Pavley, who represents Malibu, has gotten a little smaller. Louise Rishoff, who works on Pavley’s staff, announced last week she was withdrawing from the race.

Rishoff wrote in a letter that she would not be able to fully commit to a campaign and maintain her job on Pavley’s staff. She said her decision was made easier by the fact that Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District President Julia Brownley was also running for the seat.

“Julia is motivated by service, not by ego or ambition,” Rishoff wrote. “She is honorable and decent, and I endorse her with enthusiasm and without reservation.”

Rishoff had been endorsed by Pavley and Sen. Sheila Kuehl has supported Brownley. There were some who believed the endorsements could cancel each other out, benefiting other candidates.

Brownley is a Democrat. She is running against three others from her party. The primary election is in June. The other candidates are Calabasas Mayor Barry Groveman and Santa Monica residents Jonathan Levey and Kelly Hayes-Raitt.

Pavley is being forced out by term limits. She said she will run for the state Senate seat being vacated by Kuehl in 2008.

City offers free emergency response training

The city of Malibu will be offering free Community Emergency Response Team training classes that will begin on Tuesday.

Those attending the classes will learn disaster preparedness, fire suppression, medical techniques, light search and rescue and how to respond to terrorism.

The classes will take place at City Hall from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and last through Feb. 28. For more information, call Brad Davis at 456.2489 ext. 260 or send an e-mail to

Program to inform on Medicare Part D

The Los Angeles Department of Aging will provide a program on Jan. 11 at the Malibu Senior Citizens Club to help people understand Medicare Part D, the new prescription drug plan.

The speakers will provide information and education about the new prescription benefit offered by Medicare as of Jan. 1. Also, there will also be the opportunity to enroll in a Part D plan.

There will be a pizza lunch at 12:30 p.m. The program will begin at 1 p.m. The club is located at the Point Dume Clubhouse, located at 29500 Heathercliff Road. The event is free for club members and caregivers and costs $5 for non-members, but they can join the club at the meeting.

The food is free, but reservations must be made by calling 457.2895.

-Jonathan Friedman