If it’s fall, that means it’s time for the ever-awesome Fairview Community Church in Costa Mesa to honor another round of awesome activists with its annual “Beacon of Light” celebration. Last year, the church decided to shout-out Orange County Human Relations Committee secular saint Rusty Kennedy, CIVIC (Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement)…and me. This year, Fairview has decided to get three deserving winners instead of two, and will honor Costa Mesa-based nonprofit MIKA, and two longtime friends of the show for the Weekly: SanTana teacher Benjamin Vazquez and Everychingona Felicity Figueroa.
Vazquez—Valley High profe, Centro Cultural de México member, Noche de Altares hustler—needs little intro to Weekly readers. I profiled him in our inaugural People issue, and he most recently is making the rounds with Rida Hamida in doing “Taco Trucks at Every Mosque” across Southern California. I’ll introduce him, and expect the hombre to make those in attendance laugh, cry, and inspire them to transform their respective communities.
Figueroa doesn’t have as wide a public persona as Vasquez, but she’s a legend in OC progressive circles. She’s done a little bit of everything: DREAM Act advocacy, Orange County Equality Coalition membership chair, Great American Write-In leader, and eternal peacemaker between the OC Left’s eternally squabbling factions. For me, she’s as constant as a sea breeze: wait long enough, and Felicity’s beaming smile, calm demeanor, and indefatigable enthusiasm will eventually show up to make everything all right.
As usual, the Rev. Sarah Halverson-Cano will be mistress of ceremonies. Tickets are $45 pre-event, $55 at the door, and all proceeds go to help out Fairview’s ministry of doing what the Nazarene deemed. Fun starts at 5 p.m. at 2525 Fairview Rd, Costa Mesa, (714) 545-4610, and Fairview’s website is ocfairviewchurch.org. See you there!