East County

A REVIEW OF JUAN VARGAS’ FIRST YEAR IN CONGRESS

 

By Jordan Schaffner

Miriam Raftery also contributed to this article

January 21, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – What has Congressman Juan Vargas accomplished during his first year in office and how effectively is he representing his constituents?

The answer varies, with the Congressman showing strong interest in representing the interests of Latinos, seniors, and labor interests -- while largely ignoring the interests of rural constitutents and enviornmentalists concerned over the industralization of East County with large-scale energy projects.

EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE’S NOVEMBER RADIO SHOWS ARE NOW ONLINE: LISTEN NOW!

 

Our November shows are now online—including special reports on East County issues, interviews with top newsmakers, local musicians, authors, colorful characters and people making a positive difference in our community. Click here for a list of our November shows and guests with links to listen online.

You can also hear our show live when it airs on KNSJ 89.1 FM on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 5 p.m. and reruns Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 9 a.m.  Or listen live online during those hours at www.KNSJ.org.

THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS—IN EAST COUNTY

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

December 23, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- ‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through East County, not a creature was stirring, not even a coyote…

Click here to listen to  “'A Visit From St. Nicholas in East County”, our special audio presentation--including what residents  in our mountains, deserts, rural and urban areas may be asking Santa for this season:  http://k007.kiwi6.com/hotlink/00k2bvgikc/NightBeforeChristmas.mp3

VIEJAS CASINO & RESORT GIVES OVER 12,000 TOYS TO LOCAL SALVATION ARMY

 Link to video from Toy Drive “Big Reveal”: http://youtu.be/Wt6i9YqPrHM

December 12, 2013 (Alpine) – When the curtain went up on stage at the DreamCatcher Lounge last night at Viejas Casino and Resort, it revealed 12,017 toys to benefit local children this holiday season. 

Representatives of Viejas Tribal Council also presented a $15,000 check to  East County Salvation Army Captain Terry Masango on behalf of the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians, along with the largest donation of toys ever received by the local Salvation Army chapter.

READER’S EDITORIAL: AN OPEN LETTER TO SAN DIEGO INTERIM MAYOR TODD GLORIA: “HAVE A HEART”

 

By Claudia Millerbragg



I am asking you to put human life before money. If you continue with your plans to drain Lake Morena it puts the residents of rural East County at a higher fire risk.

If a fire sweeps through here and property and lives are lost because of the low water levels at Lake Morena are you prepared to live with the fact that your decision to drain the lake contributed towards the destruction?

NEED HELP FOR YOUR FAMILY THIS HOLIDAY SEASON? EAST COUNTY TOY AND FOOD DRIVE WILL ACCEPT APPLICATIONS NOV. 23 AND DEC. 7

 

To help brighten the holidays for families in need, the Salvation Army in El Cajon will be holding the 38th Annual East County Toy & Food Drive. 

To apply for help, applications will be taken on Saturday, November 23rd and on Saturday, December 7th, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Salvation Army offices, located at 1011 E. Main Street in El Cajon.  Toys are for children ages 12 and under.

WHY IS COUNTY VETERANS SERVICES DEPARTMENT IGNORING RURAL EAST COUNTY VETS?

 

 

Update September 27, 2013:  Supervisor Jacob's office has contacted us to advise that she met with County Veterans Services this week to request more equitable staffing. Her staffer advised that Jacob plans to introduce a measure asking Supervisors to approve sending veterans' service representatives to county libraries throughout our region. This is a direct result of our investigative report.

By Miriam Raftery

September 25, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – When Claudia Millerbragg, whose brother was killed in Viet Nam, decided to volunteer to help local veterans, she was shocked to discover that County Veterans Services sends representatives to a dozen different communities – but none to rural East County. 

At a Homes for Our Troops event in March honoring combat vets who each lost both legs and now live in a rural area in El Cajon, Supervisor Dianne Jacob said that San Diego has the largest military installation in the world. 

“In East County we have the highest concentration of military and veterans in San Diego County,” she added.

If East County has the most veterans, why does our region have the fewest services for them -- and no services at all in the poorest rural areas with no public transportation?

JACUMBA HOT SPRINGS CELEBRATES CENTENNIAL & NEW LOGO

 

September 1, 2013 (Jacumba Hot Springs) -- Next year marks the century milestone of the founding of Jacumba Hot Springs. Although the community of Jacumba was settled in the mid- 1800s, the first time the community appeared in an official document as Jacumba Hot Springs was in a State of California Railroad Commission document dated1914.

Four major festivals are planned for the Centennial: a third annual Blues Festival May 3, a Healing Waters and Arts Festival the weekend of May 24, a Centennial Fall Festival October 4 and a Christmas Festival December 6.  More details on the festivals will be announced at a later date.

CALIFORNIA CERTIFIED FARMERS’ MARKET NOW OPEN IN ALPINE

June 21, 2013 (Alpine) – The Alpine Certified Farmers’ Market opened earlier this month at the Alpine Creek Town Center, 1347 Tavern Rd.  The market is held every Tuesday from 3 – 7 p.m.  The Market is also a pick up location for Sage Mountain Farms’ CSA program for all of East County.

CSA is Community Supported Agriculture and it allows anyone to “partner” with a local farmer and reap the benefits of their efforts while supporting the farmer by assuring they will have a place to sell the crop.

ASSEMBLYMAN JONES AND EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE TO HOST EASTERN SAN DIEGO COUNTY PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST

 

June 20, 2013 (Santee) -- Assemblyman Jones (R-Santee) and East County Magazine announced today that they will host a photography contest that features photographs taken in San Diego’s East County. The winning photographs will be displayed in Assemblyman Brian Jones’ Capitol Office and featured in East County Magazine. 

“It’s an honor to be able to highlight the photographers and the beautiful landscapes Eastern San Diego County has to offer,” Jones said.  

Miriam Raftery, Editor of East County Magazine said, “East County Magazine appreciates this opportunity to showcase the works of talented local photographers.  East County Magazine looks forward to publishing works displaying our region’s beautiful scenery and our historic communities.”

All entries must be received by July 15, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. to be eligible. For details, scroll down.

EAST COUNTY MOVERS AND SHAKERS TURN OUT FOR PEOPLE’S BALL TO SUPPORT KNSJ RADIO

By Miriam Raftery

Photos by Melody Ponchot and Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2013 (San Diego) – Community members , activists and political leaders from across East County were among hundreds in attendance at the People’s Ball Saturday night at the World Beat Center.  The event raised over $4,000 that will be matched by an anonymous donor, leaving just $5,000 left to raise for a transmitter to put KNSJ radio on the air in East County.

Prominent East County residents in attendance included Lemon Grove Councilman George Gastil, Boulevard Planning Group member Melody Ponchot, and Ben Kalasho, who narrowly missed winning his race for El Cajon Council.  Musicians, artists, and groups ranging from human rights advocates to Green Party members also turned out to support KNSJ, which will reach portions of San Diego in addition to a vast area in East County.

STONEY'S KIDS AND COTTONWOOD GOLF CLUB HOLD TOURNAMENT BENEFITING THE EAST COUNTY FOOD DRIVE DECEMBER 12

 

 

 

 

 

December 9, 2012 (El Cajon)--Where else can you have fun, and do great things for kids at the same time? Sign up for the December 12 golf tournament at Cottonwood Golf Club, and bring an unwrapped toy for East County Toy and Food Drive. For a fee of $49.00, the tournament includes:

THE FAR EAST PROJECT: 2012 CLOSING CEREMONIES NOV. 30

November 18, 2012 (San Diego) – The Far East Project will celebrate its firs year with the 2012 Closing Ceremonies to be held at 3rd Space, 4610 Park Blvd., San Diego on November 30 at 7:00 p.m. The first year of The Far East Project draws to a close with an enormous amount of accomplishment under its belt: a conference on the future of East County arts, a photo contest, a website archiving populist submissions, events on two college campuses, and the first published volume of a people’s history of East County, “Everything Just as It Is”.

AS COUNT CONTINUES, SOME RACES NARROW WHILE OTHERS WIDEN; JUST 7 VOTES SEPARATE CANDIDATES IN ONE EAST COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT

By Bill Weaver

November 13, 2012 (San Diego)—On Election Night, several important races in San Diego and East County were too close to call.  Counting is underway of mail-in and provisional ballots at the County Registrar of Voters, where about 210,000 ballots countywide remain to be counted. 

“WORST ENVIRONMENTAL BILL EVER” IN CONGRESS SPLITS VOTES AMONG LOCAL REPRESENTATIVES

By Miriam Raftery

October 20, 2012 (Washington D.C) – H.R. 3409 has been called the worst environmental bill ever Congress by SustainableBusiness.com. Deceptively titled the “Stop the War on Coal Act”, the bill in fact repeal major public health and environmental safeguards, even overturning Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act protections. 

Duncan Hunter and Darrell  Issa, both Republicans, voted for the bill, Congresswoman Susan Davis, a Democrat, joined with Republican Brian Bilbray in voting no. Bob Filner did not vote.

“PAINT THE TOWN RED” FOR SDSU HOMECOMING WEEK- OCT. 10-12

October 5, 2012 (San Diego) -- Mid-October is Homecoming week for San Diego State University. This year’s homecoming theme is “Paint the Town Red”--something the Honorary Chair and Grand Marshall for the festivities – The Show – knows all about!

SDSU will host several events starting Sunday, Oct. 7 and leading up to the homecoming football game against the Colorado State Rams on Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 at 3:45 p.m. at Qualcomm Stadium.

HEARTLAND FIRE AND RESCUE OPEN HOUSE EVENTS OCTOBER 13, 2012

 

October 4, 2012 (East County, San Diego) -- Heartland Fire & Rescue will be hosting three Fire Open House events on Saturday, October 13, 2012 in Lemon Grove, El Cajon and La Mesa. 

This is an opportunity to receive free safety tools and important lessons for you and your children.

YMCA’S BRANDING EVENT RAISES FUNDS FOR SPECIAL PROGRAMS AND PROJECTS FOR LOCAL YOUTH AND FAMILIES SEPT. 29

September 22, 2012 (San Diego) -- On Saturday, September 29, hundreds of East County residents will shine their belt buckles and don their best pair of jeans for East County Family  YMCA’s annual fundraiser called The Branding. The event, now in its 19th year, will be held in a western setting at McGrath Family YMCA in Rancho San Diego.

Since The Branding’s inception, thanks to the generosity of community members, sponsors, donors, and dedicated volunteers, The Branding  has raised more than $1.5 million.

PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: ON THE ROCKS

 

July 23, 2012 (McCain Valley) - ECM reader Tom Lemon sent in these spectacular photos of McCain Valley, site of the proposed Tule Wind facility in San Diego's East County.

"I first visited McCain Valley around 1995 after reading Jerry Shaad's book Afoot and Afield in San Diego County. I began camping and hiking in the Valley and explored the trails and side roads to vista points where you can see the abandoned San Diego and Arizona Eastern Railroad tracks, the Salton Sea, and Castle Butte in Arizona. Yes, you can see all the way to Arizona," he wrote.

"My friend Brian getting into the spirit of McCain. Yeah, it does make you feel like that."

SAN DIEGO’S PHIL’S BBQ WINS TRAVEL CHANNEL’S BEST WEST COAST SANDWICH

 
Phil’s BBQ El Toro tri-tip sandwich takes one of ten regional titles to advance to the final round
 
July 19, 2012 (San Diego) -- On Wednesday, July 18, 2012, Phil’s BBQ was named the West Coast Regional Winner of the Travel Channel show “Adam Richman’s Best Sandwich in America.” Phil’s El Toro tri-tip sandwich is one of ten regional winners that will move on to the final round of judging, where one sandwich will be named Best Sandwich in America.  There’s good news for East County foodies:  Phil’s BBQ will be coming to Santee this fall. (Here’s a clip of the Phil’s BBQ segment.)

LA MESA CENTENNIAL “AMAZING GEOCACHE” CHALLENGE BEGINS

 
Modern Day Scavenger Hunt Uses GPS-Enabled Devices to Find City’s Historic Treasures
July 17, 2012 (La Mesa) -- The La Mesa Centennial-themed Amazing Geocache Challenge is officially on, and anyone who appreciates a fun and family-friendly modern-day scavenger hunt is encouraged to participate – and possibly win prizes along the way. Officially started on June 2 to coincide with the city’s Flag Day Parade, the Challenge concludes at 5:00 pm October 7, 2012, coinciding with the end of the La Mesa Oktoberfest. It’s not to late to participate!

SARA'S STORY: EAST COUNTY ACTIVIST LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO FREE SARA KRUZAN

 

 Carrie Christie's "Dear Kamala" Postcard Campaign Brings Attention to Sex Trafficking Victim Sara Kruzan
 
Story by Ron Logan
 
Update November 1, 2013:   Ron Logan e-mailed ECM to inform us that Sara Kruzan has been freed after 19 years in prison and is now living in a halfway house.
 
July 7, 2012 (San Diego) – This Independence Day promised the usual smell of barbecued burgers and dogs, the taste of chilled drinks, the glisten of suntan lotion, the sound of children playing, and the smoke, the lights and the crackle of pyrotechnics. Across the nation, families celebrated their independence, partied with friends, and enjoyed the freedoms that we far too often take for granted. 
 
But this Independence Day meant much more for Sara Kruzan – a woman who has never known independence, has never enjoyed freedom, and has fallen through the cracks of our society. 

 

REMEMBERING DAD: GRAVESIDE AND AT ROADSIDE MEMORIALS

 
By Rebecca J. Williamson
 
June 15, 2012 (San Diego's East County) -- Buying a round of golf for dear old dad at Carlton Oaks Golf Course for Father’s Day is not an option for many in the East County. Not even buying a tie, cologne, or brunch at Barona or Viejas casinos.
 
The stark reality for many, young and old alike, is that their father has already passed away.  What remains are memories, photos, belongings, and a graveside.

STATE AND FEDERAL RUN-OFF MATCHUPS FOR NOVEMBER

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 15, 2012 (San Diego) –Who will be squaring off in the November run-off  to represent East County and San Diego in Congress and the State Legislature?

With all but 7,000 votes counted locally, according to the Registrar, here’s a rundown on these important race--including our assessment of the odds for those vying in the November run-off election:

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