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NEIGHBORS / SHORT TAKES : Kids on Record : KinderPASSPORT books are going out to area parents. They hold photos and information about a child to be used in emergencies.


East county children are now more easily identifiable.

On Monday, about 9,500 Conejo Valley elementary school students received free KinderPASSPORT record books to take home to their moms and dads, courtesy of Los Robles Medical Center.

The books, developed in 1989 by a Wisconsin man, provide an orderly way for parents to store their kids' vital statistics, emergency phone numbers and updated photos. Agoura Hills businessman Peter Arkin is marketing the books in Southern California and is trying to get sponsorship from local businesses.

Suzanne Odegaard Turner, assistant vice president of marketing and development at Los Robles, said the hospital will likely pay for books to be distributed to elementary schools throughout the hospital's service area. That would include Simi Valley, Moorpark, Camarillo and Westlake.

In promoting the record books, Arkin cites this U. S. Department of Justice statistic: Current photographs exist for only 20% of children reported missing.

"It's a very scary number," he said. "I think people have always taken it for granted. If somebody walks up to you and asks you to identify yourself, you show your driver's license. But we don't have any identification for our children."

Arkin said his goal is to distribute the record books nationally. "There are 54 million children age (less than a year) to 12 in the United States," he said.


Diane Angle was skeptical 13 years ago when a friend suggested that she check out the egg art exhibit at the Ventura County Fair. She didn't believe that it would be all that it was cracked up to be.

Angle was pleasantly surprised.

"There was an absolutely gorgeous display of crystals and rhinestones; the eggs played music and turned," Angle said. "I went crazy. I said, 'I want to do that.' "

And she has. Angle, an assistant to the Ventura city clerk, has twice won Best of Show at the annual California Egg Artistry Show. She'll be involved again this weekend when egg artists (or eggers, officially) from across the country scramble to the Hyatt Westlake Plaza Hotel.

After 13 years, Angle still retains her enthusiasm for egg art. She said it's a craft that is consistently innovative, with intricate decoration and automation. "The only thing we can't do is embroidery, and we're working on it," she said. "The imagination just goes crazy."


While we're on the subject of egg art, let's talk suede.

Camarillo egger Ann Copeland said there's a liquid suede paint that is popular in the field. Just paint on several coats, she said, "and hold it up to the steam of a steam kettle." Presto. Suede eggs.


Return of the Bumps: A couple of weeks ago, we told you about the benefit concert that the Ventura-based band known as the Bumps was going to stage for Aaron Clement. Clement, of course, is the Ojai boy who recently received a long-awaited liver transplant.

Well, we wanted you to know that the concert was a major success. According to Terrie Longo, wife of Bumps member Chris Longo, the band's performance attracted 200 people--including Clement's parents, aunt, uncle, sisters and brothers--and brought in $3,300.

It also attracted the mother of L. A. Dodger pitcher Kevin Gross (a former Ventura County baseball standout), who presented Clement with an autographed baseball card of her son.

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