Fear that Laguna Beach would become Miami West or a Waikiki wannabe drove a group of Laguna Beach residents to take on City Hall in 1971.
The City Council had approved a new zone from Broadway to Bluebird Canyon Drive that would allow 100-foot-tall hotels on the city's beaches. A group of locals, already outraged by the city approval of additional height for the Surf & Sand Resort, began fomenting a rebellion that ultimately led to a height limitation not just on the beaches, but citywide. It led to the formation of Village Laguna.
"Both were the crowning achievements of my political life," said Arnold Hano, 89, who chaired the group that became known as the Yes on Aug. 3 Committee. He also served as the first president of Village Laguna. "One fed into the other."
The 40th anniversary of the successful "yes" vote on Aug. 3, 1971, and the council's capitulation the day after, will be celebrated Aug. 29 at Village Laguna's annual picnic at Aliso Beach and proclaimed at a City Council meeting in September.