Business and Labor

MARRIOTT COURTYARD HOTEL, CORNERSTONE OF EL CAJON’S DOWNTOWN REDEVELOPMENT, CELEBRATES GRAND OPENING

  

 

 

 

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor, and Miriam Raftery, Editor

June 21, 2018 (El Cajon) — The seeds of El Cajon’s Herculean downtown redevelopment plans for the city's historic heart bore fruit at Thursday's grand opening of the Courtyard-by-Marriott El Cajon hotel, drawing an enthusiastic crowd.

The four-story, 88,000-square foot hotel is located on Magnolia Street just off Main Street near the city's “superblock”, which also includes the East County Performing Arts Center set to reopen in spring under management of international concert promoter and producer Live Nation.

Numerous restaurants, sidewalk cafes, shops, galleries, and civic festivals  are all within a couple of blocks of the hotel in the revitalized heart of El Cajon, a city that celebrated its centennial in 2013. Located just off Interstate 8 in San Diego's East County,  the hotel is 20 to 30 minutes from downtown San Diego and beach areas, also close to attractions in the region's backcountry. 

But there's plenty to do right here in downtown El Cajon, where major community events include Friday night outdoor concerts at Prescott Promenade Park and Wedneday night classic car shows (photo, below right)on Main Street all summer long. Visitors can also enjoy seasonal celebrations such as America on Main Street, Hauntfest on Main, and holiday festivities. The superblock also includes city hall, the courthouse, library, and police headquarters.

BUSINESS EVENT HIGHLIGHTS IMMIGRANT ENTREPRENEURS : TONIGHT AT SYRIAN-OWNED RESTAURANT ON WORLD REFUGEE DAY

 

Local business owners celebrate refugees’ positive economic contributions: over 64,000 foreign-born residents add $1.4 billion in business income to San Diego County

Source: Business For Good

June 20, 2018 (El Cajon) – On June 20, small business owners will gather at an immigrant-owned restaurant to honor the positive economic impact of immigrants and refugees on the San Diego economy. The event will take place on World Refugee Day, observed annually to honor the courage, strength and determination of people who are forced to flee their homeland under threat of persecution, conflict and violence.

The event will begin at 5 p.m. at Suri Restaurant, 461 El Cajon Blvd, El Cajon, CA 92020. If you’d like to attend, check out the event link.

Business for Good San Diego, a local nonprofit that unites small business owners to drive policy that improves the community, works to support policies that recognize the importance of immigrants to our local economy. Staying true to this perspective, Business for Good partnered with International Rescue Committee San Diego to bring this summer mixer to Suri Restaurant, a Syrian restaurant in El Cajon.

PASSPORT THROUGH TIME FUN RIDE JUNE 23 ALONG HISTORIC HIGHWAYS IN EAST COUNTY

 

 

Click here to listen to our interview on Passport Through Time with Eric Lund, president of the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce, recorded in May and originally aired on KNSJ radio.

By Miriam Raftery

June 12, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce invites you to join in the Passport Through Time fun ride on Saturday, June 23 along Historic Highways 67, 78, 79 and 80 in San Diego’s East County.  Cars, motorcycles and other vehicles are welcome to participate.

The ride begins at 8:30 a.m. at Indian Motorcycle in El Cajon.  First stop is the Lakeside Rodeo grounds. Next, you’ll head north into the mountains through Ramona with a stop at the Oasis Camel Dairy, into Julian and a visit to the Julian Mining Company, down to Descanso and the Perkins Market, then on to Dana's Boutique, followed by the beautiful Summers Past Farms in Flinn Springs before ending up at Por Favor for lunch in El Cajon at noon.

Audio: 

HOME START NAMES RICK ROARK AS CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER

 

East County News Service

June 11, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) -- Home Start, a non-profit child abuse prevention and treatment agency that has strengthened and developed San Diego’s families and communities since 1972, has named East County resident Rick Roark as its Chief Financial Officer.

CALIFORNIA COAST CREDIT UNION IT CHIEF RECEIVES TOP TECH EXEC AWARD

 

Angela Moran recognized among local IT technology leaders

Source:  Cal Coast Credit Union

June 4, 2018 (San Diego) - Angela Moran, Chief Information Officer at California Coast Credit Union, which has several branches in East County, is among 13 leading IT professionals recognized with a 2018 Top Tech Exec Award for “forward-thinking and innovative approaches and programs” involving information technology.

SENTRE SELLS FLETCHER HILLS CENTER IN EL CAJON FOR $7.8 MILLION

 

East County News Service

May 31, 2018 (Fletcher Hills)  –  Fletcher Hills Properties LLC has acquired The Shops at Fletcher Hills Center in El Cajon for $7.8 million.  San Diego based commercial real estate investment firm SENTRE has advised selling entity Peckham Properties Inc. in the deal to acquire the property built in 1959.

FBI: RUSSIAN HACKERS HAVE INFECTED HOME ROUTERS

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 30, 2018 (San Diego) – The FBI has issued a warning of Russian hackers infecting computer routers. The hack is linked to an espionage group loading malware that has already caused major attacks in the Ukraine and has now been found on home and office computer routers in the U.S.

CASTLE MIXER ENCHANTS ALPINE CHAMBER AND GUESTS

 

Alpine-Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce

Who knew Alpine had a castle?

May 29, 2019 (Alpine) -- Guests were treated like royalty May 23 at the Alpine Castle! The first of the “It’s After 5 Somewhere” mixers by the Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce was delightfully medieval with all the modern amenities at the palatial home in the Alpine foothills.

SYCUAN TOPS OFF HIGHRISE HOTEL RESORT

 

 

Backcountry hidden pleasures:   Our guide to unique lodging adventures in San Diego’s beautiful backcountry

By Miriam Raftery

May 24, 2018 (Sycuan) – The Sycuan Casino held a topping off ceremony on Tuesday to celebrate placement of the final beam at the 12-story, 300-room hotel and resort slated to open in March 2019.

Sycuan Tribal Chairman Cody Martinez thanked tribal elders and members, the executive team, and Swinerton builders.  “It really is a collaboration,” he said, calling the tribe’s achievement “a family effort--everybody bringing together the vision of what it is going to take to bring Sycuan to the next level.”

The hotel will create 700 new jobs for the community, Chairman Martinez said.

UNEMPLOYMENT DROPS IN STATE AND REGION

 

East County News Service

May 21, 2018 (San Diego) -- Unemployment in California has fallen to 4.2% statewide—a new record and the lowest rate since 1976.

In San Diego County, the news is even better.  Countywide, unemployment in April dropped to just 2.9 percent as our region’s labor market continues to tighten, according to the State Employment Development Department.  Our local unemployment rate is one percent lower than April of last year, and the lowest that it’s been since January 2000, over 18 years ago.

FIESTA TIME! HACIENDA CASA BLANCA IN EL CAJON OPENS NEW OUTDOOR PATIO

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 18, 2018 (El Cajon) – Just in time for Cinco de Mayo, Hacienda Casa Blanco opened up its new outdoor patio earlier this month.  The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony for the occasion, where  Chamber members savored margaritas, festive music and authentic Mexican dishes.

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW: FINANCIAL TIPS FROM JONATHAN ZIDE, CABRILLO CREDIT UNION VICE PRESIDENT

 


 

By Miriam Raftery

May 18, 2018 (San Diego) – What should consumers know about saving money and choosing a financial institution?  What’s the difference between credit unions and big banks?  When does a home equity line of credit make sense, and what are new options when shopping and financing a car?

These are among the questions East County Magazine asked Jonathan Zide, vice president of Cabrillo Credit Union, which has branches in La Mesa, San Diego and Carlsbad. The local company has been serving our region since 1955, starting out helping federal Border Patrol agents. Today, it’s open to everyone.

Audio: 

SANTA YSABEL TRIBE’S MARIJUANA PRODUCTION INDUSTRY POISED TO GO UP IN SMOKE

 

Lawsuit alleges tribal development corporation breached contract in cannabis operation

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

May 16, 2018 (Santa Ysabel) – The Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel has had a troubled history achieving its goal of gaining financial stability and independence for its 300-member tribe near Julian, some 40 miles east of Escondido.  Now, the Santa Ysabel Tribal Development Corporation is in hot water.

CALIFORNIA NOW FIFTH LARGEST ECONOMY IN WORLD

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 9, 2018 (San Diego) -- California now has the fifth largest economy in the world, surpassing Great Britain to rank above all other nations on earth except the United States, China, Japan and Germany.

The state’s economic production last year topped $2.7 trillion, fueled in large part by California’s high-tech industry.

SANTEE GYM HOSTS OPEN HOUSE FOR ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION

 

East County News Service

May 8, 2018 (Santee) – Champion Gymnastics and Cheer (10580 Prospect Ave., Santee) will host a free open house Saturday, May 19 from 2-5 p.m. to celebrate its anniversary. 

The public is invited for tours of the facility offering lessons in gymnastics, cheer, tumbling, parkour, and dance plus laser tag, birthday parties, summer camp and a CHAMPS meetup group. There will be free use of the gym, a bounce house, foam pit, hotdogs, popcorn and beverages, plus karaoke and prizes.

For more information, call (619) 449-7717 or visit www.cgcchamps.com. If you sign up for a class, you can also get 50% off the first month’s tuition.

EAT YOUR “HEART OUT” AT THE TASTE OF LA MESA JUNE 11TH: TICKETS ARE NOW AVAILABLE

 

East County News Service

May 6, 2018 (La Mesa) - The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce announces that the 10th annual “Taste of La Mesa” will be held on Monday, June 11 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the La Mesa Community Center (4975 Memorial Drive) in La Mesa.  The event features samples of foods, wines, and beers from dozens of local restaurants, wineries and breweries.

FARMER’S MARKET DEBUTS IN LA MESA’S DOWNTOWN VILLAGE

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 4, 2018 (La Mesa) --  I took a trip into La Mesa’s downtown village today to check out opening day of the new Farmer’s Market, which has moved to downtown La Mesa along La Mesa Village.  The market is now operated by the La Mesa Village Association instead of the city, with a new farmer’s market company.

MERCHANTS CRY FOUL OVER FARMER’S MARKET SURVEY AND VOICE CONCERNS OVER DEBTS OWED BY EVENT'S PROMOTER, AARON DEAN

 

 

 

Updated April 30, 2018:  The city has rescinded $3,400 in fines and administrative citations on Depot Springs after finding the property in "substantial compliance" April 26, for violations and citations dating from 11/30/17 through 4/11/18.

Also comments from city manager Yvonne Garrett on availability of the existing Farmer's Market site have been added.

By Miriam Raftery

April 29, 2018 (La Mesa) – Numerous merchants in La Mesa’s downtown village are calling for the City Council to reconsider its vote to move the Farmer’s Market to the heart of the village on Friday nights. Some say they were never contacted, while others contend they were deceived  in a survey sent around by the La Mesa Village Association (LMVA) about which night of the week the market would be held, and/or about the inclusion of food trucks. One says that her survey was forged—with even her name misspelled.

 Several long-time merchants are also raising concerns over the financial stability of Aaron Dean, president of the La Mesa Village Merchants Association which is currently set to takeover management of the Farmer’s Market from the City of La Mesa starting the first Friday in May, on a six-month trial basis.

“GOODBYE, EL CAJON SEARS. IT’S BEEN GOOD TO KNOW YOU.” STORE LIQUIDATION SALE TO START APRIL 27TH

 

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

April 23, 2018 (El Cajon) -- An iconic mainstay of El Cajon retail shopping is closing with the sudden announced closing of the Sears store at Parkway Plaza.

The official announcement of the El Cajon store’s closing came earlier this week as part of the latest round of eight store closures by the wounded national retailer that plans to close 166 stores this year.

COUNCIL BREWING CO. TAKES OVER FINEST MADE ALES SPOT IN SANTEE

 

By Mike Allen

Photo:  Liz Chism, Curtis Chism and daughter Olivia (8 months).

April 21, 2018 (Santee) -- The shifting tides of San Diego’s still-expanding craft brewing industry claimed another victim recently when Santee’s Finest Made Ales closed, but another growing brewery quickly took over the spot.

LA MESA CHAMBER HOSTS SPRING FLING BUSINESS EXPO APRIL 26

 

 

East County News Service 

 

April 7, 2018 (La Mesa) – On Thursday, April 26, La Mesa Chamber of Commerce invites you to join them for a unique evening and opportunity to meet some of the local businesses within our community. The 4th Annual “Spring Fling - Business Expo” has been requested by local businesses to provide them an opportunity to showcase their goods and services.

KENWOOD LIQUOR ADDS U-HAUL SERVICE

 

Source: U-Haul

April 6, 2018 (Spring Valley) -- U-Haul Company of California announces that Kenwood Liquor in Spring Valley has signed on as a U-Haul® neighborhood dealer to serve the Spring Valley community. Kenwood Liquor at 9612 Dale Ave. Suite 1 will offer U-Haul trucks, trailers, towing equipment, moving supplies and in-store pick-up for boxes.

EAST COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE MEMBERS TO DIALOGUE WITH ERNEST DRONENBURG ON APRIL 10

 

East County News Service

April 2, 2018 (El Cajon) – The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce’s next “Dine and Dialogue with Elected Officials” event on Tuesday, April 10 will feature Ernest J. Dronenburg Jr., San Diego County Assessor-Recorder-County Clerk.

EAST COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE HOSTS FREE HEALTH FAIR AT GROSSMONT CENTER APRIL 7

 

East County News Service

April 2, 2018 (La Mesa) – The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce will present Health Fair Saturday, one of the largest annual free health fairs in San Diego’s East County Region, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 7, in the promenade area near the movie theaters at the Grossmont Center mall, 5500 Grossmont Center Drive, La Mesa.

LA MESA CITY COUNCIL VOTES TO MOVE FARMER’S MARKET TO DOWNTOWN VILLAGE

 

 

 

Updated with revised start date of May 5th for the Farmer's Market

 By Jonathan Goetz

Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report

 March 30, 2018 (La Mesa) – La Mesa residents will soon be able to stroll the heart of the downtown village to shop for fresh produce, crafts and other items on Friday afternoons and evenings.  The  La Mesa City Council voted 4-1 at Tuesday’s meeting to move the Farmer’s Market to the downtown village on a six-month trial basis.  It will be run by the La Mesa Village Association instead of the city as a special event each Friday  from 3 to 7 p.m. starting May 5th, with street closures from 1 to 8 .p.m.

 The change has drawn support from many shoppers and some businesses, but has also engendered opposition from restaurants concerned about losing regular patrons on their busiest night of the week and neighbors with noise and parking concerns.

 The new market is projected to be approximately double in size of the current Friday night farmer’s market near the civic center, which must  ultimately move due to redevelopment plans.

EDCO HOSTS EVENING MIXER AT BJ’S ON MAY 16TH

 

Source: La Mesa Chamber of Commerce

March 25, 2018 (La Mesa) – On Wednesday, May 16th, the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce encourages you to join them and enjoy great food, good conversation and an evening in La Mesa hosted by EDCO.

EDCO is a family-owned and locally operated waste collection and recycling company serving numerous communities in Southern Californian since 1967. EDCO specializes in offering integrated, user-friendly waste removal and recycling programs to serve residential homes, multi-family properties, commercial businesses multi-tenant buildings, industrial centers, construction sites, and community events.

KEY FARMING ISSUES HIGHLIGHTED AT COMMUNITY EVENT SPONSORED BY INDIVISIBLE RAMONA

 

By Joyce Strand

Photo from left to right: Democratic candidate for Congress Ammar Campa-Najjar, Republican candidate for Congress Shamus Sayed, Luawanna Hallstrom and Warren Bacon.

March 15, 2018 (Ramona) - The topics of water, farm labor, and NAFTA dominated presentations at Indivisible Ramona’s second community meeting to understand issues of importance to San Diego County, held at the Ramona Library Community Room on February 27th.

TRUMP BLOCKS QUALCOMM TAKEOVER

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 13, 2018 (San Diego) – President Donald Trump has blocked a takeover of Qualcomm by Singapore-based Broadcom, which would have been the biggest technology merger in history.

In a a presidential order, Trump cited “credible evidence” that if Broadcom acquired Qualcomm, the foreign corporation “might take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States.”

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