Monday, March 31, 2008

Media Advisory March 31, 2008 Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

LOS ANGELES DEMONSTRATION SET AT AIG TOWER
Tuesday, April 1st – 12:30 pm (No April Fools)
Will Appeal to AIG CEO to Help Reopen Landmark Gay Bar

LAGUNA BEACH, CA -- Supporters of the historic Boom Boom Room in Laguna Beach will appeal to Martin J. Sullivan, President and CEO of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) tomorrow Tuesday, April 1, 2008 at 12:30 pm. Demonstrators from Laguna Beach and Los Angeles will gather in front of the AIG / SunAmerica Tower, 1999 Avenue of the Stars (corner of Avenue of the Stars & Constellation Blvd.), Los Angeles, CA 90067. The demonstration is expected to last from approximately 12:30 to 1:00 pm.



SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com has been working for nearly two years to try and convince property owner, Steven Udvar-Hazy to save the landmark gay bar. Udvar-Hazy heads up International Lease Finance Corporation, a division of AIG and is the 83rd richest American, according to the latest Forbes Magazine. His net worth is listed at $3.1 billion. Udvar-Hazy bought the Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn in which it is housed in the fall of 2005. The Boom Boom Room closed after 61 years last September. It had been the oldest gay bar in the Western United States.

“We will be releasing a letter to Martin J. Sullivan, the CEO of Mr. Udvar-Hazy’s parent company asking him to help resolve this situation,” said Fred Karger, Founder of SAVE the BOOM!!! “As the head of AIG, the world’s largest insurance and financial services company, Mr. Sullivan has the absolute power to conciliate this situation. We are extremely hopeful that he will help save our gay landmark in Laguna Beach.”

-- end --
VOLUNTEER ALERT March 31, 2008 Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

Los Angeles Demonstration Set Tomorrow, April 1st
Supporters of SAVE the BOOM!!! – WE NEED YOU!!!

** REMINDER REMINDER REMINDER REMINDER REMINDER **

We need your help from 12:00 noon to 1:00 pm tomorrow to appeal to Martin J. Sullivan, the President and CEO of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) to help convince Steven Udvar-Hazy, the Boom Boom Room owner to give us back out landmark gay bar.

We have already received lots of media coverage all over the world (see below). Please join us for only 1 hour to help preserve over 100 years of gay heritage in Laguna Beach.

Thank you!!!

PLEASE FORWARD THIS TO YOUR EMAIL LIST!!!

***Special Appearance by world famous bagpiper Lorne Cousin, who just returned from a world tour with Madonna! http://www.lornecousin.com/index.html

LOOK AT ALL THE PRESS COVERAGE THAT THE DEMONSTRATION HAS ALREADY RECEIVED!!!

AOL Money News
15,635,000 Visitors/day
http://money.aol.com/news/articles/_a/los-angeles-demonstration-set-at-aig/n20080328140309990026?cid=2369

Bizjournals.com, Inc.
111,000 Visitors/day
http://www.bizjournals.com/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2008/03/28/DC17887


Bolsamania (Web Financial Group)

http://www.bolsamania.com/internacional/noticia.php?origen=feed_prnews.noticias&id=DC1788728032008-1&isin=

Breitbart.com

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=prnw.20080328.DC17887&show_article=1

Earth Times

http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/los-angeles-demonstration-set-at-aig,330425.shtml

East Bay Business Times
111,000 Visitors/day
http://www.bizjournals.com/eastbay/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2008/03/28/DC17887


Forbes.com
256,000 Visitors/day
http://www.forbes.com/prnewswire/feeds/prnewswire/2008/03/28/prnewswire200803281359PR_NEWS_USPR_____DC17887.html

Houston Chronicle

http://markets.chron.com/chron?GUID=5026392&Page=MediaViewer&ChannelID=3197

Los Angeles Times
53,000 Visitors/day
http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=LATENT.story&STORY=/www/story/03-28-2008/0004782037&EDATE=FRI+Mar+28+2008,+01:59+PM

MarketWatch

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/los-angeles-demonstration-set-aig/story.aspx?guid=%7B9E0C2E6D%2D6722%2D4A4E%2D9CFF%2D483596554095%7D

PR Newswire
53,000 Visitors/day
http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-28-2008/0004782037&EDATE=

RBC Dain Rauscher Inc. (fka Dain Rausche

https://sites.stockpoint.com/dain/newspaper.asp?site=D&Mode=Insurance&Story=20080328/088p0436.xml

RCR Wireless News

http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/crain?Account=rcrnews&GUID=5026392&Page=MediaViewer&ChannelID=3197

Sacramento Business Journal
111,000 Visitors/day
http://www.bizjournals.com/sacramento/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2008/03/28/DC17887

San Francisco Business Times
111,000 Visitors/day
http://www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2008/03/28/DC17887

San Jose Business Journal
111,000 Visitors/day
http://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/prnewswire/press_releases/California/2008/03/28/DC17887

Soapdom.com
53,000 Visitors/day
http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=SOAPDOMENT.story&STORY=/www/story/03-28-2008/0004782037&EDATE=FRI+Mar+28+2008,+01:59+PM

State House News Service (Affiliated New
53,000 Visitors/day
http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=SHNSPOL.story&STORY=/www/story/03-28-2008/0004782037&EDATE=FRI+Mar+28+2008,+01:59+PM

US Politics Today
53,000 Visitors/day
http://prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=ind_focus.story&STORY=/www/story/03-28-2008/0004782037&EDATE=FRI+Mar+28+2008,+01:59+PM

Friday, March 28, 2008

Media Advisory March 27, 2008 Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

DEMONSTRATION SET AT AIG TOWER
Century City Demonstration -- Tuesday, April 1st – 12:30
Will Appeal to AIG CEO to Help Reopen Landmark Gay Bar

LAGUNA BEACH, CA -- Supporters of the historic Boom Boom Room in Laguna Beach will appeal to Martin J. Sullivan, President and CEO of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) on Tuesday, April 1, 2008 at 12:30 pm. Several dozen demonstrators from Laguna Beach and Los Angeles will gather in front of the AIG / SunAmerica Tower, 1999 Avenue of the Stars (corner of Avenue of the Stars & Constellation Blvd.), Los Angeles, CA 90067 on Tuesday, April 1, 2008
(3 hour free parking in the Century City Mall directly behind AIG). The demonstration is expected to last from approximately 12:30 to 1:00 pm.
SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com has been working for nearly two years to try and convince property owner, Steven Udvar-Hazy to save the landmark gay bar. Udvar-Hazy heads up International Lease Finance Corporation, a division of AIG and is the 83rd richest American, according to the latest Forbes Magazine. His net worth is listed at $3.1 billion. Udvar-Hazy bought the Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn in which it is housed in the fall of 2005. The Boom Boom Room closed after 61 years last September. It had been the oldest gay bar in the Western United States.
“We will be releasing a letter to Martin J. Sullivan, the CEO of Mr. Udvar-Hazy’s parent company asking him to help resolve this situation,” said Fred Karger, Founder of SAVE the BOOM!!! “As the head of AIG, the world’s largest insurance and financial services company, Mr. Sullivan has the absolute power to conciliate this situation. We are extremely hopeful that he will help save our gay landmark in Laguna Beach.”
VOLUNTEER ALERT March 27, 2008 Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

Los Angeles Demonstration Set for Tuesday, April 1st
Supporters of SAVE the BOOM!!! – WE NEED YOU!!!

We need your help next week to appeal to the President and CEO of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) to help convince the Boom Boom Room owner to give us back out landmark gay bar.

SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com has been working for nearly two years to try and convince property owner, Steven Udvar-Hazy to save the landmark gay bar. Mr. Udvar-Hazy heads up International Lease Finance Corporation, a division of AIG. He bought the Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn in which it is located in the fall of 2005. The Boom Boom Room closed after 61 years last September. It had been the oldest gay bar in the Western United States.

We will be releasing a letter to Martin J. Sullivan, the CEO of Mr. Udvar-Hazy’s parent company to ask him to help resolve this situation. As the head of AIG, the world’s largest insurance and financial services company, Mr. Sullivan has the absolute power to conciliate this situation. We are extremely hopeful that he will help save our gay landmark in Laguna Beach.

This will be a fun, friendly, lunch-time demonstration in Century City. We will all meet at 12:00 noon in front of the AIG Tower, 1999 Avenue of the Stars (corner of Avenue of the Stars & Constellation Blvd. -- see flyer attached and below). Plenty of free parking in the Westfield Mall right behind the AIG Tower.

We will have music, food and surprises. Thank you very much!

PLEASE FORWARD THIS TO YOUR EMAIL LIST!!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

NEWS UPDATE March 19, 2008

Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

West Hollywood Mayor and City Councilman Urge Owner to Save Laguna Beach Gay Landmark
750th Post Card Mailed in to Steven Udvar-Hazy


LAGUNA BEACH – SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com today announced that West Hollywood Mayor John Duran and City Councilman John Heilman became the 749th and 750th signers to mail yellow post cards to Mr. Udvar-Hazy.

“We are overwhelmed with the amount of support for our effort to save the landmark Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn in which it is housed,” said SAVE the BOOM!!! Founder, Fred Karger. “These two highly respected political leaders and great men who live 60miles to the north know the importance of historic preservation and we are very grateful for their support.”

Lots of men and women gay and straight have sent these yellow cards off to Mr. Udvar-Hazy asking him to either dramatically reduce his sale price or consider donating the building to the city of Laguna Beach or a newly created trust.

At the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Dinner in Los Angeles last weekend, two other supporters come up with an innovative way to sign their post cards when there is not a table in sight.


SAVE the DATE

We will be announcing an important SAVE the BOOM!!! event that will occur in Los Angeles on Tuesday, April 1, 2008 – and this is no April Fools. We will send you the details early next week. The event will start at 12 noon for about an hour. It will be fun and interesting and will greatly help our fight to SAVE the BOOM – Forever!!!

Thank you for all your help and support.

Best regards,

Fred Karger
Founder
www.savetheboom.com

©SAVEtheBOOM,Inc® 2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

NEWS UPDATE March 12, 2008

Fred Karger 949-494-4750

Hundreds of News Stories Worldwide on SAVE the BOOM!!!
New Bloomberg.com Story Leads the List

Laguna Beach, CA – what a week, and it’s barely half over. Bloomberg News, the world’s leading business news organization, came out with a really comprehensive story by Daniel Taub on Monday. I wanted to send it out then, but I have been scouring the internet the past two days and have literally found hundreds of major news outlets from Shanghai, China to Montgomery, Alabama that have covered our David vs. Goliath efforts as well. We are trying to persuade multi-billionaire property owner, Steven Udvar-Hazy to lower the asking price or even consider donating the landmark Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn to a trust for the benefit and use of the gay community.

Thanks to Bloomberg and so many other news organizations, plus all the blogs and individuals the story of our nearly 2 year old campaign to SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com is spreading worldwide, and support for our cause is growing. Our Post Card campaign to Mr. Udvar-Hazy has generated over 600 hundred of the yellow cards into his Century City office.

Scroll down the list below to view just some of the regional, national and international coverage that we have received in the past week.

And finally a great letter to the editors of the Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot and the Laguna Beach Independent by Thomas Miller, a real estate agent, questioning Mr. Udvar-Hazy’s new plan which appears to make no economic sense.

Happy reading and thanks to one and all for all your help and support as we work to SAVE the BOOM – Forever!!!

Best regards,

Fred Karger
Founder
www.savetheboom


Bloomberg.com
Billionaire Udvar-Hazy Is Urged to Revive Gay Hollywood Getaway
By [bn:PRSN=1] Daniel Taub []


March 10 (Bloomberg) -- Supporters of a beachside nightclub that catered for half a century to Hollywood's gay stars are hitting its owner with a blizzard of yellow postcards urging that the shuttered bar be reopened.
The Boom Boom Room in Laguna Beach, California, closed in September when its lease expired. Supporters are trying to sway the development plans of owner Steven F. Udvar-Hazy, chief executive of International Lease Finance Corp., after he aborted a nine-month effort in February to sell the oceanfront Coast Inn that houses it for $14.9 million.
For decades, the Boom Boom Room served as a getaway where Hollywood gays could mingle discreetly, away from photographers and gossip columnists. Actors Rock Hudson and Robert Reed, star of the television show ``The Brady Bunch,'' were among stars who would drive an hour south from Los Angeles to relax at the Boom Boom Room in the '70s and '80s, said Laguna Beach resident Fred Karger.
``This really is a gay community going back to the 1930s and 1940s,'' said Karger, 58, who had frequented the club since 1973 and is leading the campaign to reopen it. ``That is what we're fighting to preserve.''
The inn no longer is for sale and the plan is to redevelop the building ``as an upscale small boutique hotel,'' Udvar-Hazy wrote in an e-mail. He gave no further details. Real estate agent Joe Smith of Monarch Beach Realty said last month that he had three potential buyers for the property.
The hotel opened in 1927. By the mid-1970s, the Boom Boom Room had become an exclusively gay bar, Karger said. Udvar-Hazy bought the Boom Boom Room and the Coast Inn in 2005 for about $13 million.
Save the Boom
``There was a little more freedom than there would have been in Los Angeles,'' said Robert Hofler, author of ``The Man Who Invented Rock Hudson: The Pretty Boys and Dirty Deals of Henry Willson,'' a 2005 book about gay actors of the 1950s and 1960s. (Carroll & Graf, 325 pages, $26.95).
Save the Boom, a group Karger formed before the bar closed, is urging Udvar-Hazy to preserve the Boom Boom Room ``or donate it to the city or to a trust that will continue to operate it as a gay establishment.''
Supporters, including ``Brady Bunch'' co-star Florence Henderson and former National Basketball Association player Dennis Rodman, have sent about 500 yellow postcards emblazoned ``SAVE the BOOM!!!'' to Udvar-Hazy's Los Angeles office, Karger said.
Laguna Beach has had a reputation as being gay-friendly since the late 1930s, Karger said. Former Laguna Beach Mayor Robert Gentry was one of the first openly gay U.S. mayors.
Hudson's Manager
``There was a pianist, and we all sat around and sang,'' said Mark Miller, 81, who was Hudson's manager, recalling a visit to the Boom Boom Room in the 1970s with Hudson and singer- comedian Martha Raye. ``Lots of show business people came down there.''
Forbes Magazine ranked Udvar-Hazy 79th on last year's list of the U.S.'s richest people, with a net worth of $4.1 billion. A Hungarian immigrant, he sold his company, the world's largest purchaser of commercial aircraft, to American International Group Inc. for $1.3 billion in 1990.
The pink-and-white Coast Inn is perched along the Pacific Coast Highway, spilling down a cliff to the beach. Its 25 rooms are being rented on a month-to-month basis, Karger said. Brown paper covers the windows of the Boom Boom Room, which sits empty.
Morris Skenderian, an architect who has worked with Udvar- Hazy, said a redevelopment plan may include restoring the inn's fa├žade and turning the Boom Boom Room into an art gallery, the Orange County Register reported. Skenderian didn't return telephone calls seeking comment.
Mayor's Backing
A boutique hotel worries Karger, who said that might be a difficult fit alongside an occasionally rowdy bar, ``unless you had incredibly understanding guests, because you have a fair amount of noise coming from there.''
Boom Boom Room supporters have approached Laguna Beach officials to help keep a gay bar at the property. The city will consider any proposed building permit it receives, said Mayor Jane Egly.
``Everyone on the council would love to see a Boom return,'' Egly said. ``There's nothing we can do except encourage the developer to consider that.''
To contact the reporter on this story: Daniel Taub in Los Angeles at dtaub@bloomberg.net.
Last Updated: March 10, 2008 01:00 EDT


MORE COVERAGE

http://en.ce.cn/World/biz/200803/11/t20080311_14794870.shtml
Battling for the Boom Boom Room
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2008-03-11 13:36

http://www.aviationtoday.com/pressreleases/19944.html

EDGE MAGAZINE BOSTON: http://www.edgeboston.com/index.php?ch=news&sc=glbt&sc2=news&sc3=&id=71471

GAY TRAVEL BLOG: http://travel.gaynewsblog.net/2008/03/billionaire-udvar-hazy-is-urged-to.html

DIGITAL NEWS DIRECT: http://digital50.com/news/items/PR/2008/03/05/DC15887/basketball-stars-urge-billionaire-steven-udvar-hazy-to-save-laguna-beach-gay-bar.html

EXAMINER.COM: http://www.examiner.com/p-126587~Basketball_Stars_Urge_Billionaire_Steven_Udvar_Hazy_to_Save_Laguna_Beach_Gay_Bar.html

YAHOO NEWS: http://news.yahoo.com/s/usnw/20080305/pl_usnw/basketball_stars_urge_billionaire_steven_udvar_hazy_to_save_laguna_beach_gay_bar

MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23381886/

GAY BUSINESS NEWS: http://www.gaybusinessworld.com/page.cfm?Sectionid=3&typeofsite=snippetdetail&ID=2441&snippetset=yes®ion=5

BOSTON HERALD: http://markets.kiplinger.com/kiplinger?GUID=4515718&Page=MediaViewer&Ticker=aig

EARTH TIMES: http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/basketball-stars-urge-billionaire-steven-udvar-hazy-to-save-laguna-beach,304281.shtml

ABC TV BOSTON: http://finance.abc7chicago.com/abclocal?Account=wls&GUID=4515718&Page=MediaViewer&Ticker=aig

Greg Hernandez’s Out in Hollywood: http://www.insidesocal.com/outinhollywood/2008/03/john_amaechi_lends_his_name_to.html

KIPLINGER NEWS: http://markets.kiplinger.com/kiplinger?GUID=4515718&Page=MediaViewer&Ticker=aig

GAY TRAVEL NEWS: http://gaytravelnews.com/news08.cfm?id=85

AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL GROUP WIRE: http://www.topix.com/wire/com/aig

QUEENSPEACH: http://queensspeech.com/conversations/out-in-hollywood/john_amaechi_lends_his_name_to_save_the_boom_

WSFA TV (NBC) MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA: http://www.wsfa.com/Global/story.asp?S=7820241

MONTANA’S NEWS STATION (CBS): http://www.montanasnewsstation.com/global/story.asp?s=7820241&ClientType=Printable

Letter to the Editors
Laguna Beach Independent March 7, 2008

Is Udvar-Hazy crazy?

Editor:
I read with great interest a story in the OC Register re: the Coast Inn in Laguna Beach. I was very curious because I am a licensed real estate agent pretty familiar with the commercial market here in Southern California.
Now, I am sure the Mr. Udvar-Hazy is a very smart man. You don’t become a multibillionaire unless you are a smart businessman, but I have to tell you that his plan for the Coast Inn and the Boom does not make any sense to me.
He is trying to sell the building for $14 million and let’s say will spend another $6 million to fix it up. And he is going to cut the number of rooms in half to make them bigger, so that will leave about 11 or 12 hotel rooms.
12 rooms at $20 million equals close to $1.7 million per hotel room. This would make Mr. Udvar-Hazy’s hotel about the most expensive price per room of any hotel in the world. Seems like he would have to charge $5,000 per night per room if he ever wants to get his money back. Makes the Montage at $800 a night seem like a bargain.
And then, I read that there won’t be a restaurant on the ground floor, but instead an art gallery or a salon. Well, the rent for this space will have to be $100,000 per month and that is a lot of haircuts. I have never seen a successful hotel big or small without a bar or restaurant as an anchor.
It appears to me that Mr. Udvar-Hazy is just proceeding with this poorly thought out new plan to spite the gay community and all our friends in Laguna Beach who used to so love the Boom Boom Room.
Why not make everybody happy and donate the building back. If I had $3.1 billion that is what I would do!! We can redo the bar in airplane theme in his honor. We could use the wings of a plane for the bars, a landing strip on the dance floor, space drinks -- it would be amazing!!
Thomas Miller
Los Angeles
-- end --

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

NEWS RELEASE March 4, 2008

Contact: Fred Karger 949-494-4750

Basketball Stars Send Post Cards to Steven Udvar-Hazy
Hope to Get Billionaire to Help SAVE the BOOM!!!


LAGUNA BEACH, CA – SAVE the BOOM!!! www.savetheboom.com today announced that it mailed off its 500th yellow post card to Coast Inn and Boom Boom Room property owner Steven Udvar-Hazy.

Two of the yellow cards were signed by basketball greats Dennis Rodman and John Amaechi. They are the latest celebrities to voice their support to save the landmark gay bar in Laguna Beach. Actresses Florence Henderson and Fran Drescher earlier had signed and mailed in post cards to help save the landmark gay bar.

Fred Karger, Founder of SAVE the BOOM!!! said, “we are incredibly excited about the outpouring of support for our cause. On behalf of all of us involved in the effort, I want to thank Dennis Rodman and John Amaechi for their help. They are two of professional basketball’s greatest players ever, and we are so happy to mail in our 499th and 500th post cards to Mr. Udvar-Hazy signed by these two American Heroes. “

Rodman led the NBA in rebounds for a record seven consecutive years. He played for the Detroit Pistons, San Antonio Spurs, Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks. He was a 5 time NBA Champion (1989 & 1990 -- Detroit, 1996, 1997, 1998 -- Chicago) and now lives in Newport Beach, CA.

Amaechi, 6 ft 10 in, 270 lb played for the Cleveland Cavaliers and then played in Europe before signing with the Orlando Magic, Chicago Bulls, Utah Jazz, New York Knicks and the Houston Rockets. In February 2007, Amaechi publicly announced that he is gay and became the first player associated with the NBA to come out. Since then he has been very active in many gay organizations and causes. Amaechi lives in Los Angeles, CA.

“We will fight for our 61 year old landmark and hope that Mr. Udvar-Hazy do the right thing and reopen these businesses. The postcards are addressed to the Airplane Tycoon at in Los Angeles office and ask him to help us by either reducing his asking price or consider donating the building that he owns to the City of Laguna Beach or to a newly created trust,” said Karger. The Coast Inn and the Boom Boom Room are located at 1401 S. Coast Highway in Laguna Beach, CA. “He could donate the property and we could keep it as a gay bar, hotel and restaurant and even include a gay and lesbian community center in the historic building. We have an operator all lined up if Mr. Udvar-Hazy is willing to do this. And If the building were remodeled it could become the finest gay resort destination in the world and become a huge money maker for its owner,” said Karger.

Steven Udvar-Hazy is the CEO of International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) in Los Angeles, and he was ranked the 83rd richest American on the 2007 Forbes list with a net worth of $3.1 billion. ILFC is a wholly-owned division of American International Group, Inc. (NYSE: AIG), the world's largest Insurance and Financial Services Company.

The yellow SAVE the BOOM Post Cards are in stores around Laguna Beach and have been signed by hundreds of people both gay and straight from all over the world. Anyone interested in getting post cards should email savetheboom@aol.com or call 949-494-4750

“We are going to keep up our campaign to save our landmark bar for as long as it takes,” concluded Karger.

-- end --

Saturday, March 01, 2008


NEWS UPDATE February 29, 2008

Dear Friends – well, it has been a crazy week and you can see why by all of the media coverage. There was an in depth story about our continuing fight to save our landmark Coast Inn and the Boom by Candice Baker in the Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot.

Coast Inn owner, Mr. Udvar-Hazy finally met the press for the first time in the 2 years of our campaign to SAVE the BOOM!!! this week. I have included the story which is a revised version of the one that I sent you last Saturday by Christa Woodall of the Orange County Register.

Also, a wonderful story by Margaret Foster with well respected Preservation Magazine based in Washington, DC about our preservation fight right here in Laguna Beach.

And more national coverage about the Boom and our Post Card Campaign to Mr. Udvar-Hazy on MSNBC and the Wall Street Journal Online!

If you have time, try and read these stories, you will see that there are still many opportunities to save our landmark bar and over 100 years of gay history in Laguna Beach along with it.

Thank you so much for all or your interest and support as we work to SAVE the BOOM – Forever!!!

Best regards,
Fred Karger
Founder
www.savetheboom.com

Updated: Feb 28,
http://www.coastlinepilot.com/articles/2008/02/29/news/cpt-boom022908.txt

Fight for Boom not over, activist says
Despite reports that redevelopment of site is imminent, Fred Karger is still campaigning to save iconic gay bar.
By Candice BakerReader Feedback - Currently No comments posted. Comments
Whether the Boom Boom Room and Coast Inn are heading into redevelopment or not, Fred Karger isn’t giving up the fight to keep Laguna’s gay center from disappearing.The owner of the emblematic center of Laguna Beach’s gay community has reportedly reverted back to his original plan to turn the site into a boutique hotel, following its quiet withdrawal from the real estate market Feb. 1.“It’s not over,” said Karger, founder of Save the Boom, who has been waging a highly public campaign to keep the 80-year-old bar afloat.Karger said “for sale” signs remained in the windows as of Sunday and that prospective buyers were recently touring the property.The nearly 19,000-square-foot property was pulled from the market by billionaire Steven Udvar-Hazy less than six months after the “for sale” signs went up, according to real estate agent Joseph Smith.“He doesn’t want to be bothered with [the sale],” Smith said.Smith said the property wasn’t posted on a listing service, but was made available on a more informal, informational basis from September 2007 through January 2008, with an asking price of $20 million to $20.9 million.He added that aviation tycoon Udvar-Hazy has retained Laguna architect Morris Skenderian to resurrect an original plan to bring the Coast Inn, built in 1924, back to its historic heyday.Udvar-Hazy is working with Skenderian on the project in order to prevent the investment from staying “stagnant,” Smith said.Udvar-Hazy’s Emerald Financial LLC paid nearly $13 million for the 24-room hotel, its restaurant and bar in April 2005.He also bought a beachfront house and the Coast Liquor store, as well as the nearby Gay Mart, in the shopping spree for a reported grand total of $25 million.Thought by many to be the oldest gay bar in the western United States, the Boom catered to movie star celebrities like Rock Hudson and everyday patrons alike.Bar operators were given a one-year reprieve in August 2006; the establishment closed last year on Labor Day.The closure echoed that of Woody’s at the Beach, a gay restaurant, formerly the Little Shrimp piano bar. Woody’s closed last February.The Boom’s threatened closure sparked grassroots efforts by local resident Karger and his Save the Boom campaign, including petition collection and the sale of a Men of Laguna Beach calendar.Karger’s mission was fueled by celebrity gossip from the beginning.Rumors that Udvar-Hazy was in cahoots with actors George Clooney and Brad Pitt to renovate the property took wing as quickly as they were shot down.Most recently, Karger recruited celebrities including Florence Henderson of “The Brady Bunch” and “The Nanny” Fran Drescher in a postcard-writing campaign.But despite continued publicity, many viewings and proclamations of interest, the property never changed hands.“Obviously, if there was anyone serious, it would be sold,” Smith said.“These are not the easiest of times when it comes to real estate.”

http://www.ocregister.com/news/boom-skenderian-gay-1986041-property-hazy

Thursday, February 28, 2008
Restoration planned for Boom Boom Room property
Former home of landmark Laguna Beach gay bar to be renovated to 1940s-style boutique hotel.
By CHRISTA WOODALL
The Orange County Register
Comments 5 Recommend 17
LAGUNA BEACH - The Coast Inn, which housed longtime gay landmark the Boom Boom Room, will be restored to its 1940s style under a plan by the inn's owners.
The restoration plans virtually dash hopes in the gay community that their longtime watering hole will reopen in its location within the Coast Inn.
Emerald Financial LLC, of which aviation mogul Steven Udvar-Hazy is a partner, took down the for sale sign Feb. 1.
"We're trying to restore it back to what it looked like in the early '40s," said architect Morris Skenderian.
Despite Hazy's offer of an extended, month-to-month lease, Boom owners Patrick O'Loughlin and James Marchese opted to close the bar in September 2007.
In the face of strong opposition from the gay community, Emerald Financial had put the land and two nearby parcels for sale after its April 2005 purchase with an asking price of more than $20 million.
Emerald Financial had entertained offers to sell the properties, but August's subprime real estate crisis became a roadblock for interested buyers who couldn't get loans or afford the down payment.
When no good offers had surfaced by January, Hazy decided to move ahead preserving the inn.
"They've (prospective buyers) had a window of opportunity to present alternate plans, and those didn't come forth," Hazy said. "I don't want to let it sit there as a dilapidated building – I think it's better for the community and the city if we develop it, bring in tax revenue and upgrade the safety of the neighborhood."
Save the Boom activist Fred Karger, who continues to work toward reviving the bar, said he's hopeful that Hazy might reconsider his plans and donate the property to the gay community or reduce the price.
"There's so much history that we're not prepared to walk away from," Karger said. "There's a tremendous amount of gay money out there that I'm hoping to tap to take over his property, but in the meantime, I'll do everything in my power to hold onto what was ours for 61 years."
With Coast Inn's four beach-facing levels, razing and rebuilding a new structure was never an option, Hazy said.
"We wouldn't be able to replicate that today," he said. "It creates a lot of intrinsic value. If we tore that down, we would never replace four levels, even with the best of intentions."
Spanish-style arches and balconies would return to the building's entrance as it had been before a '60s-era fire.
Facing Coast Highway, what was once the Boom Boom Room could be an art gallery or a salon, Skenderian said.
Across Mountain Street, the liquor store nicknamed the Gaymart would become a market and deli that caters to locals, tourists and beach-goers.
A food facility within the hotel was considered but likely will be elminated.
"Right now it's so dilapidated in there and there's so much work to bring it up to code," Skenderian said. "There are so many restaurants in that area now ... "
Construction for the project may take a year and a half after getting approval, which likely would take another year and a half, Skenderian said.
All groups will be welcomed to the inn, Hazy said.
"It's a big project, but I feel the end result will be a high-quality structure with desirable accommodations," he said. "Once we're open, we're open to all people who can afford that type of upscale accommodation."
Meanwhile, Karger is working to flood Hazy's Los Angeles office with yellow "Save the Boom" protest cards. To date, he knows of at least 200 cards that have been sent, including ones signed by "The Brady Bunch" actress Florence Henderson and Fran Drescher of "The Nanny" fame.
Contact the writer: cwoodall@ocregister.com or 949-454-7391

http://www.nationaltrust.org/magazine/archives/arc_news_2008/022508.htm

Group Asks Billionaire To Spare 1920s InnStory by Margaret Foster / Feb. 25, 2008
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(savetheboom.com)
Supporters of what's being called the oldest gay bar in the country—the oceanfront "Boom Boom Room," which opened in Laguna Beach, Calif., in the 1940s—have hope this month that the building's new owner might want to offload the controversial property rather than raze it for a new hotel.
Steven Udvar-Hazy, who bought the building in 2005 for $12.9 million, took it off the market on Feb. 1, worrying some locals. But the "for sale" signs are still posted, and two potential sellers viewed it last week, according to Fred Karger, who is leading a grassroots effort to save the club.
"Some people are discouraged, but a lot of people have new hope that good will will prevail, that he will come around and do the right thing," says Karger, who last month launched "Operation Postcard," a asking Hazy to lower his price of $20 million or donate the building to the city. "I'm not suggesting he'd take a loss, but I'm hoping he'll be more reasonable in light of the history of this bar."
Hazy bought the 24-room inn and two nearby properties, planning to bulldoze them and build an 11-room boutique hotel on the site. In 2006, he extended the Boom Boom Room's lease for one year, but it finally closed last September.
"This is a commercial property and not a trophy for one group," Hazy told the Laguna Beach Independent.
Opened as the Coast Inn in the 1920s, the bar was a military hangout and later, in the 1970s, a gay bar. Now known as "the Boom," the building is now the city's second-oldest hotel.
"It needs work. The previous owners did not main it at all," Karger says. "It could be a very beautiful place to restore."
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