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ORANGE COUNTY NEWSWATCH

October 22, 1994|Jerry Hicks and Mark I. Pinsky

REDWOOD CHRISTMAS? It's hard to get too much California sunshine--unless you're a Christmas tree. The stately 20-foot spruce in Crown Valley Community Park, which Laguna Niguel residents have lit and decorated for six years, has died. Officials say its natural habitat was snow and cold--it just had too much sunshine. . . . Laguna Niguel now has its eye on an 18-foot coast redwood, and hopes some organization will come forward to buy and install it in time for a late November decoration ceremony.

FOND REMEMBRANCE: Actor Burt Lancaster, who died Friday, is remembered fondly at the Los Alamitos Center. He stayed there for two weeks in 1990 after suffering a debilitating stroke while visiting in that city. . . . Lancaster received so many flowers he had them distributed to other patients. Says its spokeswoman Kay Koford: "He was very gracious. His family was wonderful; they kept a low profile, but were here night and day."

MODEL MENTOR: Larry Paul hires lots of people in his county job in charge of harbors, beaches, and trails. Most of them lately happen to be women. . . . "I'm not gender focused, but some people with great ideas just need someone to give them an opportunity," says Paul. Someone has noticed his efforts. The county this week awarded Paul with its "Mentor Award," an adjunct to its Women of Achievement awards series. . . . Adds Paul: "I was surprised, getting an award just for doing what it is you're supposed to do."

WIN BY DESIGN: If you're in the building management business, the Oscars, Emmys or Grammys don't have near the impact as the annual Tobys. That's "The Office Building of the Year" award from the local building and managers association. . . . Recent winners: Lakeshore Towers and Palm Court, both in Irvine, and 3 Imperial Promenade at MacArthur Place in Santa Ana. Says Lakeshore Towers manager Diane Scott: "Our job is not just to get tenants, but to keep them happy. Our volleyball tournaments help."

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