Monday, November 17, 2014

Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! Skates into the Honda Center December 16-21

Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! Skates into the Honda Center December 16-21

By Annie Rivera

Join the enchanted cast of more than 50 Disney characters from over a dozen beloved Disney stories while they create a magical montage of celebrations, holidays and festivals in a fun-filled party set to a winter wonderland of ultramodern music and Disney timeless tunes during Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! at the Honda Center (2695 E. Katella Avenue, Anaheim) December 16 to December 21. 

Kicking off the celebration along with everybody's favorite characters Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse are the Disney Villains who will dance their way through a Halloween haunt. Playing the part of Jafar, the Royal Vizier of Agrabah from Disney's Aladdin, is five-year Disney On Ice veteran Tommy Do and this year marks his fifth season. 

A Sharon, Mass. native, Do, who made his debut with Disney's High School Musical: The Ice Tour, says the best part of the show is watching the stage transform into a magical world of Disney classics. "It is very heart-warming to see the smiles on children's faces," Do said. "Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! has an amazing wizard section where Mickey [Mouse] makes a broom come to life and the glow-in-the-dark effects are not to be missed." 

The transformation continues with a Very Unbirthday Party with Alice and the Mad Hatter; Mardi Gras with Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen; a Valentine's Day Royal Ball with the Disney Princesses; a Hawaiian luau with Lilo & Stitch; a snowy dreamland with Woody, Jessie and Buzz Lightyear; globetrotting to distant exotic places including China during the Chinese New Year, Brazil for Carnival and Japan for the beautiful Cherry Blossom festival Sakura.

Ticket prices range from $22 to $30; $45/$50 (VIP) and $75/$80 (Front Row). Opening Night tickets are only $15 each for select seating (not valid for VIP or premium seating). 

For more information, visit, charge by phone at (800) 745-3000, in-person at the Honda Center Box Office; or discover more at or LIKE us Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! Minnie's Royal Ball (Photo courtesy Feld Entertainment)

Disney On Ice Presents Let's Celebrate! Finale (Photo courtesy Feld Entertainment)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Book Review: I Bring the Fire Part I: Wolves (by C. Gockel)

I Bring the Fire Part I: Wolves (A Loki Story)
Genre: Fanfiction / Science Fiction & Fantasy / Myths & Legends
Rating: B
Synopsis: In the middle of America, on Route 44, Amy Lewis has a plan — to get to her grandma’s house in time for dinner. Galaxies away Loki is waking up in a prison cell, strangely without a hangover, and with no idea what he’s done wrong — this time anyway. But he does know Thor is hiding something, Odin is up to something wicked, and there seems to be something he’s forgotten...
In this tale that is equal parts “Another Fine Myth,” “American Gods,” and “Once Upon a Time,” a very nice midwestern girl and a jaded, still very mischievous Loki must join forces to outwit gods, elves, magic sniffing cats, and nosy neighbors. If Loki can remember exactly what he’s forgotten and Amy can convince him not to be too distracted by Earthly gadgets, her boobs, or three day benders, they just might pull it off...
This first volume of "I Bring the Fire" is for anyone who suspects chaos and mischief makers might have their own redeeming qualities, and anyone who just wants a good fantasy romp through modern Earth, ancient Asgard, and beyond!  (Source:
Review: Norse mythology fans and crossover Marvel comic fans will appreciate this fan-fiction story about Loki and his quest to find his fallen family when banished to a distant planet Earth, while saving the life of one Amy Lewis from the hands of a serial killer en route to Grandma’s house with her dog, Fenrir, at her side.
Initially, I felt a familiar alien-escapee-landing-on-Earth-and-a-young-Island-girl-adopting-a-dog-like-creature-Disney movie (Lilo & Stitch) had descended upon me. Then the fast-paced story accelerated immediately with enough toggles between the real world and Loki’s world to warrant a little bit of Googling on my part to find out the back story of Loki, Thor, Odin and Asgard.
Amy, a veterinary student tries to make ends meet working two jobs, taking care of her Grandmother and caring for her man-hating dog, Fenrir. Amy has a history with attracting creepy, stalker-type guys and wonders if the idea of extending an invitation to Loki to stay in a guest room at her Grandmother’s was a bad idea (for after all he did rescue her by answering her prayer). Will her grandmother approve? To Amy's surprise, Grandma finds Loki to be charming and even enjoys an evening of dancing and laughing.
To acclimate himself on Earth and to fit in with humans, Loki, who dons retro clothing, tries to learn about computers, the Internet and Amy’s fascination with her iPhone. He learns about “borrowing” versus “stealing” and the lessons about right from wrong.
The excitement picks up when Loki, Amy, Grandma, Fenrir and Car warp into another galaxy and encounter elves in a magical world. Chaos ensues as they desperately escape back to Earth where Loki is left to revamp his plans and find other means of transporting himself onward in his mission to find his lost family.
There was plenty of comical and dreary suspense during Amy’s road trip home from spring break, action in the magical world amid the elven people, plus reckless banter among Loki, Thor and Odin, along with innuendos between Loki and Amy, concluding with a surprise ending to keep you glued to the book.
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Sunday, March 30, 2014

America’s Family Pet Expo Celebrating 25th Anniversary Returns to OC Fair & Events Center April 25-27

Orange County residents can enjoy a “petstravaganza” weekend full of favorite furry, scaled or feathered friends at the 25th Anniversary of America’s Family Pet Expo at the OC Fair & Events Center (88 Fair Dr, Costa Mesa, CA 92626) from April 25 to 27.

There will be no shortage of fun actions to include the crowd-pleasing, wet-and-wild canine competition Splash Dog; Repticon for reptile enthusiasts; show-stopping Wiener Dog Races featuring a plethora of eager and speedy Daschunds.

New this year is the high energy “Extreme Canine Dog Stunt Show” featuring border collies, cattle dogs, terriers and mutts, among others, as they flaunt high jumping stunts, jump rope tricks and agility acts.

Also returning to the Expo is Dog Training with Renee where show guests can learn from renowned Certified Professional Dog Trainer Renee Jones on how to train their four-legged friends using basic and complex commands.

Learn how K9 Officers and their pup-partners serve and protect our community at the Police and Protection Dog Demonstrations.

Cat lovers can delight in the TICA Cat Show & Presentations while bird-watchers and owners can soar into The Birdman of Las Vegas show.

“As we celebrate our 25th Anniversary,” said Doug Poindexter, President of the World Pet Association, producers of the America’s Family Pet Expo, “there is something for everyone from The Great American Petting Zoo to Tickled Pink Face Painting. We are proud to showcase exciting events and highlight our Pet Adoption program.”

General Admission is $13; seniors 60 and over are $11. Children ages 6 to 12 are $8, FREE for children 5 years and under. Active and retired military are FREE with ID.

Show hours: Friday 10am to 6pm, Saturday 10am to 7pm, and Sunday 10am to 6pm.

Parking is $7.

Kindly leave all pets at home.

For more information and to purchase tickets visit

Book Review: Stuck in the Middle by Virginia Smith

Stuck in the Middle
Genre: Contemporary / Romance
Rating: B+
Synopsis: Joan Sanderson is stuck. While her sisters are off making lives for themselves, Joan lives at home helping Mom take care of her kooky grandmother. She's been deserted by her father, dumped by her boyfriend, and God seems like a distant observer. Then a Christian guy moves in next door - a doctor, no less! If only her little sister wasn't such a flirt… (Source:
Review: This delightful Christian-based story revolves around a small-town woman, Joan, who struggled with relationships in the past. The middle sister of three, Joan, who has a degree in English, works at a furniture rental store and despite her sisters' urging to get out and enjoy life, finds joy and satisfaction living at home with her mother and caring for her elderly neurotic, compulsive grandmother who loves to organize things in alphabet order.
Ken, a young doctor and his dog, Trigger, move into the house next door and the family follies begin. Joan and younger sis, Tori, compete for Ken’s attention while older sis, Allie, plays matchmaker, hairstylist, fashionista and dating coach to Joan. Gram starts in on the action with a little flirting of her own much to Joan’s dismay!
This reader found Stuck in the Middle to be a very easy ready and a little predictable at times, but nonetheless entertaining. There is a spiritual and profound lesson to be learned for those who believe in small miracles.        

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Stuck in the Middle by Virginia Smith

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Book Review: Charis: Journey to Pandora's Jar by Nicole Y. Walters

Charis: Journey to Pandora’s Jar
By Nicole Y. Walters and illustrated by Vincent Andrew Conard
Genre: Children’s / Young Adults / Mythology / Adventure
Rating: A
Synopsis: Thirteen-year-old Charis Parks has five days to save mankind. What she thought was mere mythology has become her reality … she alone must reverse the curse of Pandora’s Jar. If Charis is to fulfill her destiny, she has to face her fears against the darker forces of Hades and the blood-thirsty Erinyes Sisters who help him. Together with the gods and her best friend Gabe, Charis takes a fantastic journey to Pandora’s Jar where she must release the only spirit that remains trapped inside – the spirit of Hope. Or else … (Source:
Review: Author Nicole Y. Walters’ knack for storytelling is evident in Charis: Journey to Pandora’s Jar using wit and a sharp, cunning writing style while taking readers on a magical voyage between the real world and folkloric mythology. Her beloved character, Charis is enamored with the likes of god-giants Zeus, Hermes, Hades, Athena and Nike, among others.
Dubbed the “chosen one,” Charis, with her trusty sidekick and best friend, Gabe, at her side, together with the help of their teacher Mr. P and a diminutive Nike, must free Hope into the world or mankind, as we know it today, will perish.
One cannot help but to fall in love with Charis, a well mannered, enthusiastic, eloquent speaker and an intelligent pre-teen girl who strives to do well in life and please her family. Charis begins to encounter a barrage of dreams. As often as they occur, each one more vivid than the previous, reveals a purpose and outlines her sense of duty, even if it means she may never see her family ever again.
This reader was very intrigued by Charis and her magnetic personality. Moreover, the way in which Walters describes the uncanny character and idiosyncrasies of Mr. Ecto is outright amusing and extremely entertaining. A must-read book to nth degree!
Could this be the beginning of a book series?            

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