La Mesa

STORM DUMPS NEARLY 6 INCHES OF RAIN, 10 INCHES OF SNOW IN EAST COUNTY: FLOODING PROMPTS RESCUES

 

Story and photo by Miriam Raftery

Photo: University Avenue in La Mesa between Olive and Parks

January 21, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – From Thursday through Saturday, storms doused our region.  Mount Laguna received over 10 inches of snow.

Julian got 5.97 inches of precipitation, the most in San Diego County.  Lake Cuyamaca, Descanso, and Pine Hills all got over 5 inches of rain.

40,000 JOIN WOMEN’S MARCH IN SAN DIEGO, MILLIONS MORE NATIONWIDE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, right:  Cathy and Kayla Lechien at La Mesa trolley stop

Photo, left:  Women's marchers at the embarcadero in San Diego 

January 21, 2017 (San  Diego) – At the Spring Street trolley station in La Mesa, hundreds of East County residents converged to ride downtown and join this morning’s  Women’s March.

Major media outlets estimate some 40,000 marchers in San Diego joined millions more across the U.S. in what CBS reports was the largest protest in U.S. history.  Some participants estimate there were over 100,000 marching in San Diego; another 10,000 marched in North County. Other cities around the globe also drew huge crowds.

 Women and men,  young and old, straight and gay, white, black and Latino –and all shared one common goal:  forging a resistance coalition opposed to policies of President Donald Trump that would weaken rights and freedoms for  women, minorities, and many other American.

EAST COUNTY RESIDENTS HIT BY DEBIT, CREDIT CARD SKIMMING SCAMS AT CONVENIENCE STORES

 

By Miriam Raftery; Thea Skinner contributed to this report

January 12, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Numerous local residents say that after using their debit cards inside a Circle K store in La Mesa, thieves attempted to withdraw money from their bank accounts.  Similar scams have been used recently at other local gas stations and convenience stores. 

ROAD HAZARDS ACROSS REGION, SNOW IN MOUNTAINS, FROST WARNING TONIGHT IN URBAN AREAS

 

East County Wildfire & Emergency Alerts

December 24, 2016 (San Diego's East County)--Heavy snow is blanketing Mt. Laguna, with several inches reported in Boulevard.  Snow could dip to 3,000 feet tonight, with frost possible even in urban and suburban areas such as El Cajon and La Mesa tonight and tomorrow, according to forecaster Alex Tardy with the National Weather Service.

The storm, combined with accidents, has resulted in numerous accidents and other road hazards across our region.

JOIN US SUNDAY AT OUR FEASTING AND MERRYMAKING HOLIDAY PARTY!

 

 

December 16, 2016 (La Mesa) -- Join us for East County Magazine's annual "Feasting and Merrymaking"  holiday party this Sunday, December 18 from 3-7 p.m. at our editor's home on Mt. Helix!  Our elves have been busy preparing a fabulous feast,  plus we'll have live music provided by singer/guitarist Paul Nichols and pianist Andrea Ladmer,  wines from San Pasqual Winery and a wealth of prizes,  holiday games and surprises!

Our party is open to our subscribers, donors and friends by invitation. Subscriptions are free!  Subscribe here to our newsletter and/or wildfire alerts or donate here

RSVP is required.  Call 619-698-7617 or e-mail editor@eastcountymagazine.org to reserve space and get the address to join the fun at our fabulous event--and support award-winning community journalism!

MISS LA MESA AND MISS SANTEE PAGEANT APPLICATIONS AVAILABLE NOW THROUGH MARCH 4

East County News Service

December 16, 2016 (La Mesa and Santee)--The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce announces that applications are now available for the 2017 Miss La Mesa and Miss Santee Scholarship Pageants. Next year’s pageant will be held on Saturday, March 4th, 2017 at the beautiful new theater at Helix Charter High School.

 Each year the two cities seek young women between the ages of 12-26 to participate in a program that has become a tradition in the cities since the late 1960s and is an outstanding mentoring program for young women.

PUBLIC SQUARE COFFEE HOUSE IN LA MESA: UNIQUE SCONES AND VEGAN FARE

 

By Robin Norris Kendall

December 13, 2016 (La Mesa) -- The Coffee House Revolution has come to East County. Move over Starbucks—we can now choose to drink global, but sip local. Take, for example, Public Square Coffee House in the Village of La Mesa.

CORVETTE CRASH IN SPRING VALLEY KILLS DRIVER

 

East County News Service

December 12, 2016 (Spring Valley) — A 24-year-old man died Monday night when the Corvette he was driving at a high speed struck an Oldsmobile on Highway 94 in Spring Valley, then plunged over the side of the freeway. 

The Corvette fell 70 feet onto Spring Street below, according to California Highway Patrol Officer Kevin Pearlstein.

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW: KATIE HALVIN SHARES DETAILS ON LA MESA'S HOLIDAY IN THE VILLAGE EVENT THIS SATURDAY

 

 

December 9, 2016 (La Mesa)-- The new Holiday in the Village event will be bringing back some of La Mesa's most cherished holiday traditions--including chestnuts roasting on open fires,  holiday music and carnival rides for kids,  plus creating some new memories for all including booths with over 80 artisans.  Santa Claus will also be at the event slated for this Saturday,  December10th from 10 a.m.to 10 p.m. There's also a holiday card drive to brighten the holidays for U.S. troops overseas.

This is the first year that the new  La MesaVillage Association has been in charge of the event.  East County Magazine interviewed  Katie Halvin,  an organizer of the event,  on our radio show originally aired on KNSJ 89.1  FM.  You can listen now by clicking the orange link above.

Audio: 

LIGHTING UP THE NIGHT AT LA MESA SHIMMER DECEMBER 1

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 29, 2016 (La Mesa) – You’re invited to enjoy the magic of the holiday season at La Mesa Shimmer on Thursday, December 1st from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.   A lighting ceremony will be held at 5 p.m.at Legacy Park in the heart of the city’s historic downtown village, where you can also enjoy a hot chocolate bar, live music, and holiday window displays, shopping and dining.  For more information, visit www.cityoflamesa.us/shimmer.

HOLIDAY IN THE VILLAGE, A LA MESA TRADITION, DEC. 10

 

East County News Service

November 29, 2016 (La Mesa) - The La Mesa Village Association's new event, Holiday in the Village, will be held on December 10th from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., following a long history of Christmas in the Village events.

“As it is a new association sponsoring the event and the city is working to be more inclusive of all the holiday festivities at this time of year we have changed the name to reflect that,” the LMVA website states. Rest assured we will still have fire pits, caroling, lots of events for kids, and craft vendors to get everyone in the mood of the season!"

WITNESSES SOUGHT TO FATAL HIT AND RUN IN LAKE MURRAY AREA

 

East County News Service

November 29, 2016 (La Mesa) — Ronald Barrios, a 51-year-old father of four, has died of injuries caused by a hit-and-run driver who was struck by a hit-and-run driver while walking on Blue Lake Drive near Jackson Street in the Lake Murray area on Saturday at around 5:45 a.m.

YOU'RE INVITED TO OUR HALLOWEEN EVE MASQUERADE PARTY OCT. 30!

 

October 21, 2016 (La Mesa) -- East County Magazine invites you to our Halloween Eve Masquerade Party! 

On Sunday, October 30, 4-8 p.m. our party at a private home in La Mesa will be the “happening haunt” complete with Halloween Eve feast,  costume contest, live music with the "Bad Randies" string band & Paul Nichols' variety music (Monster Mash and more!) local ghost stories, a trove of prizes, spooky surprises, & a frightfully good time!

This party is open to our weekly newsletter subscribers, our wildfire alert subscribers, and invited guests age 21 and up.  Subscriptions are free!  Click here to subscribe

Cost: $12 and bring a dish to share  ($10 for Editor’s Club members/sustaining donors)

MISSING LA MESA WOMAN AT RISK MAY HAVE DRIVEN TO RURAL EAST COUNTY

 

Update:  KNSD reports Teresa Hudson has been found and is safe.  Authorities have not provided further details.

East County News Service

October 23, 2016 (La Mesa)—The family of missing La Mesa woman Teresa Hudson is pleading for help to find her.  She left home near  Dallas  Street and Lubbock  Avenue Saturday morning shortly after midnight and is believed to have driven her daughter’s car, a gray Kia Sportage, license plate 6RQX374.  She suffers from a psychiatric condition and left without her medication,  money, cell phone, food, or water.  She was last seen wearing a pink nightgown.

On Sunday, her husband, John, asked people to check back roads in East County. “We’ll be looking in the Dehesa area ourselves,  believing she went for a joy ride and got lost and ran out of gas with no way to get help.” The car was low on gas, the family has indicated.

LA MESA COUNCIL CANDIDATES SET FOR FORUM TUESDAY, OCT. 18

 

East County News Service

October 15, 2016 (La Mesa)—Three candidates vying for two seats on the  La Mesa City Council are slated to appear in a forum  on Tuesday, October 18 at 6 p.m.in the La Mesa Police Department’s community room.

This forum will be sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the  American Association of University Women.

Candidates are incumbents Ruth Sterling and Kristine Alessio,  as well as challenger Colin Parent.

TONIGHT: JOIN US AT THE HILLS! $2500 IN PRIZES--CHARGERS AUTOGRAPHED FOOTBALL, GULLS & AZTECS TICKETS, PADRES GEAR & MORE--BENEFITS OUR LOCAL SPORTS & NEWS REPORTING

October 12, 2016 (La Mesa) -- Bring you friends, family or favorite team to  East County Magazine's  "Good Sports" night out at the Hills Local Pub in La Mesa (8753 La Mesa Blvd.,  near Jackson Drive and La  Mesa Blvd) this Wednesday, October 12 between 5 p.m. and  9 p.m.!  There's no cover charge, but the Hills wil donate a percentage of all food and drinks sold to benefit East CountyMagazine and our coverage of  East County youth and high school sports, as well as Aztecs and pro sports.

JOIN US OCT. 12 AT THE HILLS PUB IN LA MESA! BENEFIT SUPPORTS EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE & OUR COVERAGE OF LOCAL YOUTH SPORTS

 

 

 

 

Win autographed Chargers and Padres memorabilia,Aztecs tickets, a pizza party package and much more!

October 7, 2016 (La Mesa) -- Bring you friends, family or favorite team to  East County Magazine's  "Good Sports" night out at the Hills Local Pub in La Mesa (8753 La Mesa Blvd.,  near Jackson Drive and La  Mesa Blvd) this Wednesday, October 12 between 5 p.m. and  9 p.m.!  There's no cover charge, but the Hills wil donate a percentage of all food and drinks sold to benefit East CountyMagazine and our coverage of  East County youth and high school sports, as well as Aztecs and pro sports.

EAST COUNTY CHAMBER TO RECONSIDER ITS ENDORSEMENT OF MARIJUANA INITIATIVES IN LA MESA AND LEMON GROVE AFTER BACKLASH FROM CIVIC LEADERS

 

Update Oct. 12: The Chamber has rescinded its endorsement of Measures U and V after receiving more information from the cities of La Mesa and  Lemon Grove.

By Miriam Raftery

October 6, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) –Community leaders in La Mesa and Lemon Grove are reacting with shock and outrage over endorsement by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce (ECC) of Measures U and V, which would legalize medical marijuana dispensaries in the two cities.   Voters in both La Mesa and Lemon Grove rejected similar ballot measures in the last general election.

“The City of Lemon Grove is a dues-paying member of the ECC. Our tax dollars pay for those dues,” states an e-mail sent to  Lemon Grove’s mayor and others  from  Helen Ofield,  President of the Lemon Grove  Historical Society, and her husband, Jack.  “We urge the Lemon Grove City Council and City Manager to oppose the ECC’s action in the strongest possible terms and to cancel its membership in the ECC.”

BIG CROWD TURNS OUT FOR OPENING NIGHT FESTIVITIES AT LA MESA'S OKTOBERFEST

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

October 1, 2016 (La Mesa)-- Crowds thronged the streets of  La Mesa last night for the opening of Oktoberfest , savoring an array of international foods,  Bavarian beer, root beer, arts and crafts vendors, and dancing the night away in the beer garden to the strains of a German band.

View video of La Mesans and visitors partying hearty:

 

LA MESA COUNCIL CANDIDATES OFFER DIFFERING VIEWS ON HOMELESSNESS, HOUSING, TRANSIT, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT AND MORE

 

By Janis Russell

Hear audio of candidates' response on homelessness by clicking the orange link above

September 16, 2016 (La Mesa)-Last night, the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce hosted a forum for La Mesa City Council candidates at the La Mesa Community Center.  Councilmember Kristine Alessio and newcomer Colin Parent participated; Councilmember Ruth Sterling was unable to attend due to surgery on a broken arm.The candidates agreed on some issues, such as helping local businesses thrive, but offered divergent views on others, such as how to address homelessness and transit funding.

Mary England, President/CEO of the Chamber, welcomed attendees. Bill Hammett, a Chamber board member, was moderator for the forum.

Audio: 

LA MESA CANDIDATES’ FORUM SEPT. 28 ALSO INCLUDES KEY INITIATIVES AND ISSUES

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 16, 2016 (La Mesa) - The La Mesa First United Methodist Church will host a public forum for Mesa City Council candidates and important ballot initiatives.  The forum will be held on September 28th, with a candidates’ meet and greet at 6:30 and the forum beginning at 7 p.m.

DEAN DEFENDS FOUNDING MEMBERS OF NEW MERCHANTS GROUP

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 15,2016 (La Mesa) – After receiving a reader’s editorial and a call from another local businessperson critical of the new La Mesa Village Association (LMVA), which ECM recently profiled, ECM reached out to Aaron Dean, LMVA  Chair, to respond.

READER’S EDITORIAL: IS THE LMVA REALLY A FRESH START?





Regarding your article "new La Mesa Village Association has big ideas for revitalizing city's historic heart"

By Peter Carzis, Owner, Peter’s Gentlemen’s Apparel

Editor's note: Aaron Dean, chair of the new LMVA, spoke with ECM and provided his responses to concerns raised by Carzis and others.  You can read his remarks here.

October 14,2016 (La Mesa)--I attended the first meeting of this new group. They said they want this group to be a "fresh start" in the village, but yet they boast four Founding Members who are officers and directors of the "old" group that owes the taxpayers and the City of La Mesa $47,900.50.  (Per the city clerk, this amount was turned over to collection and none of the debt has been repaid as of today.)

HAVE YOU SEEN OUR NEWSLETTER?

 

September 2, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- Our latest newsletter just came out --with all the hottest news and events impacting you in East County all in one single-page newsletter.  You can view the latest edition here.   

To get a free subscription to our weekly newsletter-- and also the option to get free wildfire and emergency alerts, click here

Tell your friends and family!

FROM POT SHOPS TO SCHOOL BONDS TO A BUILDER’S BONANZA: INITIATIVES ON EAST COUNTY BALLOTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 1,2016  (San Diego’s East County) – Beyond the blizzard of ballot measures statewide and candidates on your November ballot, East County voters will be asked to weigh in on a variety of local initiatives with big impacts.

Those include countywide measures:  one a tax to fund transportation, the other  a measure that would set a precedent for developers to  evade environmental reviews by taking projects directly to voters.   There are also medical marijuana dispensary measures on the ballots in Lemon Grove and La Mesa, a redistricting proposal in El Cajon, and school bond measures in the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College, Grossmont Union High School, and Cajon Valley  Union school districts.  Here are details:

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW WITH COLIN PARENT: ATTORNEY, ENVIRONMENTALIST AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING ADVOCATE RUNS FOR LA MESA CITY COUNCIL

 

By Miriam Raftery

Hear our interview originally aired on on KNSJ Radio: Click the orange arrow above; scroll down to read highlights.

August 25,2016 (La Mesa) – Recently,  we  sat down for an in-depth interview with Colin Parent, a lawyer with extensive experience as an affordable housing expert in the Governor’s administration. Currently he’s the policy counsel/attorney for Circulate San Diego, an nonprofit that advocates for public transit, safe and pedestrian-friendly streets, safe routes to school, and smart growth issues.  He’s also cofounder of La Mesa Conversations, a civic discussion group.

Now he’s running for the La Mesa City Council in a three-way race for two seats currently held by incumbents Ruth Sterling and Kristine Alessio.

“I’m running to improve La Mesa,” says Parent, who calls La Mesa a great place, but adds that it can be even better.  Here are the ideas he discussed:

Audio: 

FILING DEADLINE EXTENDED TO WEDNESDAY IN THESE RACES WHERE INCUMBENTS ARE NOT SEEKING REELECTION

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

August 16,2016  (San Diego’s East County)—The deadline for candidates to file, submit signatures and run for local offices has been extended to 5 p.m. tomorrow in  races where incumbents  did not file ot seek reelection. This includes key city council and mayor races in East County, as well as many school boards and special districts such as fire and water boards,as well as community planning boards.

LA MESA COUNCIL REFUSES GRAND JURY REQUST TO CREATE CITIZENS’ POLICE OVERSIGHT BOARD, ACCEPTS RECOMMENDATIONS ON HOMELESSNESS

By Tasha Matthews

ECM Editor Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report

August 4, 2016 (La Mesa)--Councilmember Guy McWhirter opened the La Mesa City Council meeting on Tuesday, July 26th by expressing concern for our country in the wake of recent shootings of police officers. He thanked police for their brave work helping to protect citizens—two days before two San Diego Police officers were shot, one fatally.

But the Council rejected a Grand Jury recommendation to create a police oversight board aimed at assuring that citizens’ rights are protected if officer misconduct is alleged. The Grand Jury made its recommendations to La Mesa and other local cities in a report on Citizens Oversight Boards of Police Behavior.

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