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Candidate Forums Set, Ball Fields on Hold, a Mayor's Conference and Walking Audit

Walk the city from a different view with 60+ Dan Burden and get to a city council candidates forum. There's important stuff going on in Manhattan Beach.

The city is pulsing with politics, walking and biking for health, and a mayor who's out of town, again.

Here are five things you should know:

1. City Council candidate Viet Ngo, one of four vying for two open seats in the March 8 election, has a website. Patch previously listed the websites for his competitors Amy Howorth, David Lesser and Kathleen Paralusz.

2. Candidate forums are scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 8 at 1 p.m. at the Neptunian Women's Club, 920 Highland Avenue, Thursday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. in City Council chambers, 1400 Highland Avenue, and Thursday, March 3 at 6 p.m. in O'Donnell Hall at American Martyrs church. Be there, at least at one event, to hear candidates talk about their views on Manhattan Beach.

3. It's back to the drawing board for the school district, sort of. Instead of presenting a plan for the complete re-location of Mira Costa High school ball fields and tennis courts as was expected, the school district will only recommend approval of the design for the four new tennis courts adjacent to the existing four courts at the school board meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 19. 

What about the fields, you say? What's going to happen to fields for lacrosse, soccer, softball, baseball and marching band? Well, after the community workshop on Wednesday, Jan. 13, the school district will not present either of the two plans put before the public at the meeting.

Instead, they will recommend creating a board committee to discuss and explore options for the Mira Costa Athletic Facilities Master Plan. Said Dr. Michael Matthews, school district superintendent, "I think this process will allow us to create greater consensus before we move forward." See what voicing your opinions can do!

4. Mayor Richard Montgomery wasn't in town for the Tuesday, Jan. 18 City Council meeting. Instead, he's in Washington, D.C. for the 79th winter meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. More than 230 mayors are expected to attend the conference, which ends Friday. The mayor of Beverly Hills and Redondo Beach are also attending.

5. Get out your walking shoes and join a "walking audit" with national livability expert Dan Burden from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 19. Then stay for a South Bay Bicycle Coalition Community Open House from 7 to 9, all of this at the Joslyn Center, 1601 North Valley Drive.

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