Plus, more ways to support people doing good in Long Beach
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Hi, I'm Tess Kazenoff from the Long Beach Post. I love Long Beach and I’m betting you do too.

Welcome to Doing Good in the LBC, a weekly newsletter where we’ll share how you can volunteer or give in our city. We’ll also share the latest goings-on of nonprofit organizations in Long Beach.
Long Beach Ballet’s production of "Don Quixote" will be at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center on June 4 and 5 at 2 p.m. Photo by Katie Ging.
Nonprofit news: 'It should really move you.' Long Beach Ballet reimagines 'Don Quixote'

When audiences attend a performance at the Long Beach Ballet, they can expect a spectacle.

There will be huge sets, expansive scenery, top-grade costumes and a full symphony orchestra, but for artistic director David Wilcox, most importantly, there needs to be a story that will resonate.

"You want it to move you, you want it to affect you emotionally," said Wilcox.

On June 4 and June 5, the ballet academy returns with a production of "Don Quixote," one of the five full-length ballets that Wilcox rotates for his students’ yearly June performance.

The ballet, based on segments from the novel "Don Quixote de la Macha" by Miguel de Cervantes, follows Don Quixote and his servant, Sancho Panza, who set out to have a chivalrous adventure.

Wilcox wasn’t initially thrilled by the idea of performing "Don Quixote"—in fact, he completely refused when an associate first suggested the ballet seven years ago.

"Every time I tried to watch it, I was lost," said Wilcox. "There was no emotional connection with the ballet. The music was pretty, but I'm confused the whole time watching, so I'd never wanted to do it."

After his associate suggested he change it, Wilcox decided to give it a try.

After trimming down and rearranging some scenes and condensing the three-act production into two acts, Wilcox was left with a simple, easy-to-follow rendition—still with elaborate elements, such as a functioning windmill and a real horse.

"Between the combination of the spectacle and the amazing music and ballet dancers floating magically through the air ... it should combine to bring you to tears, it should really move you," said Wilcox. "And that's what I think classical ballet is best at."

Read more here
Places to volunteer in Long Beach
  • The South Coast Interfaith Council is looking for volunteers who are able to assist with uploading videos to YouTube, editing Zoom videos, making phone calls or performing website maintenance. Volunteers can work from home or in the office. Email or call 562-983-1665 for more information. The council is at 525 E. Seventh St. Suite A202.

  • The Museum of Latin American Art’s most popular volunteer opportunities include welcoming guests, ushering and assisting visitors to events, and assisting with educational and outreach opportunities. Please fill out an application form to get started and email with any questions. The museum is at 626 Alamitos Ave.

  • The Children’s Clinic has a variety of volunteer roles at its numerous Long Beach locations. Positions include reading to children in waiting rooms, working on health fairs, or working with special events such as its year-round book drive or other seasonal events. Requirements include passing a background check and proof of a yearly flu shot. Fill out an application and call 562-264-4646 to find out about the next volunteer informational session that is required of all volunteers.
Ways to give in Long Beach
  • Celebrate Memorial Day while supporting Rock for Vets, an organization dedicated to improving the lives of veterans through music. For the first time in two years, the organization is hosting its live concert and fundraiser on Monday, May 30 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The free event will include live performers, a wine pull, raffles, and silent and live auctions. Join Rock for Vets at Jimmy E’s Bar and Grill, 2951 Cherry Ave. Signal Hill.

  • Support the Hearing Loss Association of America during the Walk4Hearing event on June 5 from 9:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Donate to a walker or make a general donation here. The walk is at Shoreline Park, 200 Aquarium Way.

  • The LGBTQ Center Long Beach is hosting its Black and White Ball and fundraiser on Saturday, June 25. This year’s theme is Wonderland, and guests are encouraged to dress up in the traditional black-tie attire with sparkles and embellishments. All proceeds will support the many programs and services offered at the center. Separate tickets to attend the after-party only are also available. Purchase your tickets here.
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