Instagram Contest Winners 2018

Saturday May 26

Best Shot That Captures Topanga Days

Shot With Most Likes:
Posted by @lilybleuandrew Taken by @cassandrabriskman

Best video That Captures Topanga Days
@arentyoucooperolsen (winner second year in a row)

Best video With Most Likes

Sunday May 27

Best Shot That Captures Topanga Days

Shot With Most Likes:
Posted by @clairebryettandrew Taken by @cassandrabriskman

Best video That Captures Topanga Days

Best video With Most Likes

Posted by @clairebryettandrew Taken by @beautyandthebeasties

Monday May 28

Best Shot That Captures Topanga Days

Shot With Most Likes :
@beautyandthebeasties (winner second year in a row)

Best video That Captures Topanga Days

Best video With Most Likes

A Messenger Sponsored Podcast – “The Chat with Claire Fordham”

Journalist and broadcaster Claire Fordham introduces her latest creative project, a podcast: “The Chat with Claire Fordham.”

Interesting people. Regular contributor to the Messenger Mountain News, Claire Fordham loves writing and reading about them, but hearing them speak with their own unique voices is an even better way to understand their stories and what makes them tick.

Considering her extensive experience as a freelance journalist—she worked for the BBC, ITN and Sky News in the UK and wrote a weekly anecdotal column for Britain’s biggest-selling newspaper, The Sun and currently writes regularly for Huffington Post, The Malibu Times and us, she is an author as well.

In “The Chat with Claire Fordham,” that launched October 9, she shares extended interviews with people she wrote about in the Messenger— the “Good Witch” Coco Blignaut, musical warrior Tony Selvage, creative visionary Kathy Eldon and death midwife Olivia Bareham.

She asks readers to put on their headphones, click on the link and give “The Chat” a listen. “If you like it, share it.”

This post is an excerpt of an article on Fordham’s new podcast; for the full article go to Issue 20, October 22, 2017, page 25

Take a listen of The Chat here on our Podcasts page. You can also listen on Fordham’s website:

Mysteries, Ghosts and Sightings

After the wonderful response to our request for dog interviews (see pages 14 – 19 of Issue 15, “Dog Days of Summer”) we’ve decided we’d like to solicit some extra special stories from our readers for our October 20 issue “Spooks in the Hood”. In 300 words or less tell us your experience with the unexplained.

Deadline is: October 9, 2017. Please send to:

Things for the Kids to Do!

Be sure to check out the schedule for Kids Koncerts at the Theatricum Botanicum. Here’s a link to a short video by Peter Alsop, the series creator.

And here is a link to their schedule online

Another activity coming up SONG CAMP!
Forte Poesy Music announces dates for 2017 SONG CAMPS

Shevy Smith, founder of Forte Poesy Music, a boutique music group, will be hosting two local Song Camp sessions this summer in Topanga Canyon.
Forte Poesy instructors have employed original curricula to teach musicianship through songwriting and self-expression since 2009.
“We have carefully constructed what we deem the “dream week” for campers to experience music making it a simple and rewarding adventure, available to anyone with curiosity and passion. Song Camp is great for beginners just dipping their toes in the water of songwriting and playing, as well as for those who already have some experience in creating tunes,” says Smith.
Two camp sessions——will take advantage of inherent inspiration found in local nature with light hikes, group songwriting, individual composing, beginning recording, crafting personal songwriting journals, and mock-radio interviews.
Camp is suitable for both girls and boys, ages 6-18, with much individual instruction available.

“Music should be, above all things, a rewarding and fun experience. We kind of fancy ourselves the alternative to strict, scary piano teachers and love to see students have creative breakthroughs,” Smith says. “We strive to foster an atmosphere of endless possibility and work hard to structure a camp that we would have enjoyed as kids. My staff and I are super excited to hear the songs that will come out of these summer sessions!”
Sessions are July 17-21 and July 31-August 4, from 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Ages: 6-18, at FP Studios, 21745 Entrado Drive Topanga CA 90290. Cost: $350. Pay online at
For more information and to register: e-mail; or (210) 557-1612.

Locals Bruce and Teresa Royer are celebrated March 19!

Locals Bruce and Teresa Royer are celebrated at the 3rd Annual Operation Hope Award Luncheon March 19!
Esteemed local non-profit, Operation Project HOPE (Helping Other People Everyday) will host the 3rd annual Operation HOPE Awards luncheon at the Brookside Golf Club, located in Pasadena, on Sunday, March 19, 2016, where 100-200 are expected in attendance.

For the last 3 years, OPH has honored the committed passionate individuals and corporations that went above and beyond the call of duty, giving so much more of themselves for the sake of the children in need. Its annual awards program recognizes the outstanding achievements of their dedicated volunteers and donors who make OPH projects and programs a success. OPH is pleased to honor those who demonstrate high ethical standards and exemplify the philanthropic spirit of their organization.

Amongst the honorees are local Topanga Canyon residents, Bruce Royer and Teresa Rosati-Royer, who will receive the ‘Distinguished Heroes’ award. Royer, who is an active member of his local business community where he served as Executive Producer for the Topanga Film Festival and as Media Chair, Vice President and President of the Topanga Chamber of Commerce. Bruce focuses much of his time working with youth and providing meaningful and rigorous engagement in storytelling through media arts.

Teresa co-chairs the Topanga Women’s Circle, a non-profit, committed to making a difference in the lives of the homeless families and veterans as they move into transitional housing. By providing household items and enhancing their bare bone apartments, Teresa ensures they are given a sense of dignity and self-worth at a critical time.
The Distinguished Heroes Award, given to those who’ve demonstrated exemplary volunteerism through the dedication of personal time, which is something Bruce and Teresa are consistent with and honored to do.

The mission of Operation Project HOPE is to refurbish and revitalize Los Angeles school campuses as well as revamp the school’s landscaping, making the learning environment more aesthetically pleasing and conducive to creating safe, supportive spaces where deserving students, staff and teachers alike can create and live their biggest dreams.
“The love and care brought to these schools, facilitates love and care for the children; which translates into educational success for all,” says founder Edward Robles.

To attend the 3rd annual Operation Project HOPE Awards luncheon and to learn more about Operation Project HOPE and previous events, visit

Operation Project HOPE (OPH), a 501 (c3) nonprofit, was founded on the principles that a small group of dedicated and loving people can make a difference in enhancing the learning experience of people, especially children, by providing a better learning environment by beautifying of schools and sharing positive affirmations through school beautification projects.

Our Inaugural Issue

We are very happy to announce that our inaugural issue has been produced, printed and delivered!

It has been mailed to every business, household and P.O Box in the 90290 area. If you are outside of this area, please let us know if you would like to receive and we will arrange (for a yet to be determined shipping and handling cost) but other than that, this paper is free to everyone.

Our vision is to bring local news to more people in our community (our distribution is presently 3500 issues) but also to provide canyon-wide distribution and more to our local businesses. We believe that this model will support a bi-weekly newspaper.

We are in awe of the outpouring love and support we have received, but this is indeed, a business in the making. We will always strive to have a 60/40 split between advertising and editorial–or news–content–this inaugural issue was 57/42, which was great considering we grew the paper from 24 pages to 32 because of demand for space!

Enjoy our inaugural issue and tell us what else you would like to see. As we get our ducks in a row–future schedules, correct ad rate packages and ad specifications, to name a few–remember that we will also be online, in the near future, with breaking news capabilities and other interactive aspects to further inform, delight and challenge our readers and followers.

Best regards,

Bonnie & Flavia