Events and Activities 11-18-2021

Written by Theresa-Marie Wilson

Theresa-Maria Wilson has been a journalist covering the North Coast and South County area for over 20 years. She is also the founder of Cat Noir CC and is currently working on a novel.

November 21, 2021

Tomorrow, Nov. 19 at 1 p.m. is the next Central Coast State Parks Association’s Virtual Mind Walk lecture series, “Whale, ho!”
Did you know that whaling occurred along the shores of the Central Coast? While this topic might conjure images of the brutal hunting of marine mammals, to appreciate the full story requires people to explore international politics, global economic trends, border disputes, immigration, and long-term environmental degradation. The history of the whaling industry is often less familiar to students of California history than some of the better-known stories of the Spanish missions, homesteaders, or gold rush miners. This is a local story that also reveals broader historical trends occurring on a global scale in the 19th century, which led to the exponential and ultimately unsustainable growth of this age-old hunting practice. Register at

Coalesce Bookstore will hold a book-signing event featuring local author Kevin Carroll with his debut time-travel thriller, “Left in the Stygian Shadows” on Saturday, November 27 from 1-3 p.m.
The book follows biologist Sebastian Bufflehead in April of 2001. Sleepless and racked with guilt, Sebastian mulls over his life’s nightmares. As he does, a mysterious tale unfolds: a tale between worlds and across time, of betrayal and thievery, and of mutiny and murder. Meanwhile, Maria MacDonald arrives in Kuwait International Airport, and she must confront her past and protect her son, Charleton. During the fight for his life, little Charleton learns a timeless truth: vengeance never dies.
Carroll lives in Morro Bay with his family. He is married with a son in college. After studying English and linguistics at universities in California, Carroll became an English language teacher. He taught for six years in the Middle East — four years in Kuwait and two years in the United Arab Emirates. His experiences throughout the region, and in South Asia, are reflected in “Left in the Stygian Shadows.”
Carroll works for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. He has taught at several instutitions, and his students have been both youth and adult offenders. Currently, Carroll is helping adult inmate students earn their GED certificates.

The December General Meeting of CalRTA (California Retired Teachers Association) Division 23 takes place in person at the Madonna Inn on Thursday, December 9. All attendees must follow COVID-19 safety protocols by wearing a mask and being vaccinated (bring proof of vaccination). The guest speaker is Santa Claus, aka Cecil Johnson (see photo), who will share his storytelling skills as well as surprises from his Santa’s bag. Santa Cecil is a real-bearded Santa who has been involved in the local SLO community for 50 years with almost 40 years of experience in many capacities of education, mostly as an elementary classroom teacher. Santa Cecil is a member of the Worldwide Santa Claus Network, as well as various Santa communities, and has received professional Santa training at the Northern Lights Santa Academy. Santa Cecil, professionally known as “SLO Santa,” believes that part of his role is to bring the spirit of Christmas by encouraging empathy, kindness and generosity.
The meeting from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. and includes lunch, choice of either salmon or vegetarian entrée for $20. Make checks payable to Joan Peterson, 515 Acacia St., Morro Bay, CA 93442-2705. All reservations with checks must be received by December 1. For more information email All retired educators are welcome.

The JCC-Federation of SLO presents Hanukkah Downtown 2021 on Sunday, November 28 – Sunday, December 5 at 5 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo Mission Plaza, 989 Chorro Street, San Luis Obispo. The SLO Jewish community will continue its annual tradition of lighting the public menorah each night of Hanukkah at 5 p.m. All members of the SLO community are invited to join us to celebrate. The menorah lighting will be a COVID-19 responsible event following all County Health Department guidelines.
The first night’s candle will be lit by San Luis Obispo Mayor Erica Stewart. First night of Hanukkah festivities at the Mission will include making candy menorahs, Hanukkah sweets and treats, dreidel spinning contests, prayers, songs, and fun.
Nights two through eight will be led by various area congregations and Jewish organizations and representatives. A schedule will be made public with the leaders for each night’s candle lighting. The sixth night is “Youth Night” and area families are encouraged to attend and be together with other local youths.
For those who cannot attend the candle lighting ceremony, the JCC will live-stream the event on the JCC-Federation of SLO Facebook page each night. For more information, contact the JCC at or 805-426-5465 or got to

The traveling exhibit “Bear in Mind: The Story of the California Grizzly” runs Nov. 21 – Jan. 16 at the Morro Bay Museum of Natural History, 20 State Park Road. There is a launch party from 4 to 6 p.m. on Nov. 30. Regular museum and gift shop hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This exhibition tells the story of one of California’s most beloved and feared animals – the grizzly bear. The relationship that Californians have had with the grizzly bear over the centuries is one of dualities, expressed in fear and fascination. Now extinct in the state, the grizzly has been a central character in California’s history.
The exhibition presents scientifically accurate information about grizzly bear biology, dispelling some of the myths about this top predator. It includes special sections for children and interactive elements to engage visitors of all ages.
The exhibit also shows how the grizzly was:

•Seen as the embodiment of California’s “untamed” wilderness
•Used as a symbol of freedom and power by the Bear Flag Rebellion and later the state itself (that’s a grizzly on the state flag)
•Driven to extinction as California was settled
•Used in advertising and propaganda to sell products and ideas

Morro Bay Art Association, presents a workshop in ceramics with ceramic artists Shell Voorhees and Aimee Brantley Mondays Nov. 22, 29, Dec. 6, 13 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The first two Monday’s will be hand-building your gnome and planter. The pieces will be bisque fired and ready for glazing on the third and fourth Mondays. Connect with other artists and learn the love of working with clay. This workshop is designed for beginners over 16 to adults and is appropriate for intermediate artists as well. Each participant will take home two completed (glazed) pieces (gnome and planter) in time for the holidays. The cost is $150 for members and $165 for non-members for the 4-day workshop. All materials are included. It all takes place at Art Center Morro Bay, 835 Main Street, Morro Bay. Reserve your space online at
Join local artist and illustrator Judy Maynard for a book signing of her new Zen Colorbook, “From My Brain to Yours,” on Nov 20 from 12- 2 p.m. The book is hand illustrated and full of beautiful illustrations for folks to color just in time for the holiday. Judy will be on hand at her studio gallery in Cambria to greet and sign her book where you can also see more of her whimsical alcohol ink paintings.. Enjoy lite snacks while enjoying the garden setting located at 2024 Main St. in the back of the Garden Shed Shops. For more information, go to
The Morro Bay White Caps Community Band has two more concerts planned in which they will perform with the SLO County Community Band to finish off 2021. The Santa’s Arrival concert is on Friday, Nov. 26 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the SLO Mission Plaza steps. The music continues at the Morro Bay Lighted Boat Parade on Saturday, Dec. 4 from 5:30 – 8 p.m. at the Morro Bay South T-Pier at 1185 Embarcadero. Photo credit: Frances Gaul Photography

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