December 6, 2010 (San Diego)—Brew Ha Ha, the popular comedy show featuring headline comics and rising stars, will celebrate the grand opening of its newest location near San Diego State University on Friday, December 10th at 7:30 p.m. They’ve been described as a “volcano vaporizer of crazy laughter” by San Diego CityBeat and as a “rollicking success” by East County Magazine, among other thumbs-up—or should we say, funny bones-up--reviews.
December 2, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Santa Claus will soon be getting some exercise. Instead of riding in a sleigh drawn by reindeer, Santa will utilize pedal power as he leads over150 bicyclists in the San Diego Bicycle Club’s 23rd annual “Light up a Life” holiday toy drive on December 11th.
December 2, 2010 (Lemon Grove) -- The City of Lemon Grove hosts its annual community holiday bonfire on December 3 from 6-8 p.m. at Civic Center Park, corner of Olive and Church Streets. Rain or shine, this free family-orientated event features live music, horse-drawn wagon rides, free refreshments, game booths, crafts, face painting, and more.
In addition, the Lemon Grove Historical Society will hold its traditional open house at the Parsonage Museum, 3185 Olive, and the H. Lee House Cultural Center, 3205 Olive, both in Civic Center Park, on Dec. 3 from 6 to 8 p.m.
December 2, 2010 (Alpine) – Alpine Boulevard transforms into a winter wonderland on December 3, when the town hosts its annual Alpine Village Christmas celebration.
Santa arrives at 6:30 p.m., riding in the 15th annual Parade of Lights. Afterwards, Santa and his helpers will light a holiday tree at the Alpine Community Center, 1830 Alpine Blvd., and join in a holiday sing-along. Kids and the young in heart are also invited to stay and play in a free mountain of snow, complete with sledding.
December 2, 2010 (El Cajon) -- A crowd of nearly 150 children, parents, community members and government leaders gathered Wednesday November 17 to celebrate completion of the new “Little Rascals Rooms” youth facility constructed at the Boys & Girls Clubs of East County (BGCEC) Clubhouse in El Cajon.
November 29, 2010 (San Diego's East County) -- While residents in other parts of the country are shoveling snow, and even coastal residents are contending with foggy winter days, here in East County it's been a week to savor some beautiful moments. We hope you'll enjoy a few of the best shots captured by our readers and staff this week in East County!
By Dennis Richardson
Photo by Trever Richardson
November 28, 2010 (Lakeside)--Lakeside Historical Society opens its annual Christmas Resale Shoppe on December 1st. The shoppe will be open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Christmas Eve, December 24th.
This extensive array features roomfuls of new and slightly used Christmas items for sale including Christmas trees, wreaths, garlands, angels, cookie jars, teddy bears, ornaments of every description and many wonderful items for decorating that you cannot find anywhere else. Scroll down for details on the inspiration behind this event, andiew a video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yHvYSkLSPAo
3rd annual holiday invitational art show runs through Jan. 14
November 28, 2010 (El Cajon) – The third annual Holiday Invitational Art Exhibit, featuring 32 artists and 190 pieces of artwork on exhibit, runs through January 14 at the St. Clair Gallery in El Cajon. On Sunday, December 5, an artists’ reception will be held from 3 to 6 p.m. The event, which includes wine and cheese, is free and open to the public.
By Miriam Raftery
November 26, 2010 (San Diego’s East County)—One of East County’s best-kept secrets is the cornucopia of unique shops and stores in our mountain towns. From downtown Ramona to the sleepy hamlets of Wynola and Santa Ysabel, to historic Julian and rustic Alpine, you’ll find a wealth of treasures for those on your holiday gift list—including many hand-made items unique to our region.
Here’s our guide to some of the best buys that we found:
November 24, 2010 (El Cajon) -- Enjoy a ride on the Holly Jolly Trolley in downtown El Cajon! There is no charge to ride the authentic British-style double-decker bus, which passengers can board at East Main Street and Sulzfeld Avenue, across from Prescott Promenade in downtown El Cajon.
The open-air bus travels its route every 15 minutes, providing a bird’s eye view of the sights, sounds, holiday lights, and merchant window displays. The ride features live Christmas carolers, holiday decorations, and other entertainment.
By Billy Ortiz
Flume-riding was a popular East County sport in the late 1800s. What was it like to travel via water flume from Cuyamaca to San Diego?
November 23, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – For this video adventure, I took a boat ride on El Capitan Reservoir to locate the Conejos Creek diverting dam (South Fork Feed) to the Cuyamaca Flume—once a major water source for our region. What I found was only half the dam, but still well preserved. The diverting dam is tucked away in scenic mountains 10 miles east of downtown Lakeside, accessible by boat--or a long walk on the dizzying flume trail along the east side of El Capitan Reservoir.
My reward was breath taking, to see this part of history that was once part of the Cuyamaca Flume.
November 21, 2010 (El Cajon) -- 'Tis the Season to be jolly, and you'll find a variety of fun family holiday events, promotions, prizes, shopping, and dining specials in Downtown El Cajon. Here’s a list of holiday events, starting with “After the Goose” shopping specials today. Other upcoming events include First Fridays, Cajon Classic Cruise Parade of Lights, Festive Fridays, and Christmas on the Prescott. Plus learn how you can win prizes with a “shopper passport” from Downtown El Cajon.
The following information is provided by the El Cajon Community Development Corporation:
November 21, 2010 (Spring Valley) – Cali Comfort Restaurant and Sports Bar invites you , your family and friends to celebrate Thanksgiving all day—and join a holiday crowd to cheer on your favorite team while watching NFL football. The family-owned restaurant in Spring Valley will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A loaded turkey dinner plate with all the fixings plus homemade pumpkin pie costs $15.99 – one of the best bargains in town.
If you attended East County Magazine’s holiday party last year, you'll have fond memories of the scrumptious feast served up by Cali’s cooks and catering crew. We at ECM are also thankful for Cali’s for being the major sponsor of our Sports section. Please tell them thanks if you visit—and let them know you heard about them through East County Magazine!
Also enjoy "After the Goose" shopping specials, rides and activities in downtown El Cajon
November 18, 2010 (El Cajon)--The 64th Annual Mother Goose Parade presented by Cox Communications will march down Main Street in El Cajon this Sunday, November 21 at 10:00 a.m. This San Diego favorite is the largest parade in the County and the biggest of its type west of the Mississippi. The parade features over 100 colorful entries from cities throughout the United States. Spectators will be treated to a line-up of spectacular floats, marching bands, equestrians, clowns, giant helium balloons, specialty vehicles and Santa Claus.
Story, photos and video by Billy Ortiz
November 17, 2010 (Alpine)—Far off the beaten path in the back country of east San Diego County, nestled in a hidden glen, is a special rehabilitation center for injured and orphaned birds of prey. Sky Hunters is a raptor education facility geared toward public information, preservation and rehabilitation of birds of prey. Scroll down for details and to view our video.
November 10, 2010 (El Cajon)--The Second Annual Jingle Paws Pet Walk and adoption event, sponsored by the ACES Foundation (Animal Center for Education and Services) and Camp Bow Wow, will be held on Saturday, December 4. The event runs 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Wells Park, 1153 E. Madison Avenue in El Cajon.
Following a brisk 9 a.m. walk around the park, pets and their owners can enjoy Santa's Village filled with fun pet activities, vendors, goodies, and adoptable pets--just in time for the holidays.
By: Lisa Lightfoot
November 16, 2010 (Descanso) -- Looking for something different to do this weekend? Join local artists in Descanso for an Arts Fair this Saturday, November 20t. Enjoy some free refreshments, listen to some wonderful live music, all while doing holiday shopping as you take in the fresh mountain air along with a little backcountry hospitality.
November 13, 2010 (Alpine) - The public is invited to help support birds of prey at Sky Hunters, an Alpine-based center that takes in injured birds of prey, nurses them back to health and reintroduced them into the wild.
Silpada Jewelry will be sold to raise funds for the center's work--and you can enjoy a tour of the facility to see these amazing birds up close and personal.
November 11, 2010 (Lakeside)--This Thanksgiving, Barona Resort and Casino’s chefs are preparing a delectable spread at several of their restaurants.
From the upscale Barona Steakhouse to a cornucopia of variety at the Seasons Fresh Buffet , as well as the casual ambience at Sage Café with views of Barona Creek golf course and the Barona Valley, you'll find savory holiday choices to fit every budget while enjoying a delicious Thanksgiving Meal.
November 11, 2010 (San Diego’s East County)--FBI and the East County Regional Gang Task Force are seeking the public’s assistance to find and arrest Manuel Vera, age 37, of Chula Vista, California. Vera is wanted on federal drug charges related to a methamphetamine distribution ring in East County.
November 10, 2010 (Campo) -- In association with Santa Claus, the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum in Campo announces the sixth annual North Pole Limited Christmas Trains. Rides begin Thanksgiving weekend on November 26 and run through December 18.
By Miriam Raftery
Savor stargazing, a nature scavenger hunt, community bonfire and the bounties of nature—or cozy up to watch football in the clubhouse
November 11, 2010 (Boulevard, California) -- Sacred Rocks Reserve owners Dimitri and Sharon Courmousis invite you to celebrate at their annual Thanksgiving Family Potluck Feast. “Thanksgiving is all about family and being grateful for the simple, good things in your life,” says Sharon Courmousis. “There’s no better place to connect with family than in nature, where there are few distractions.”
by Cindy Douglas
Cindy Douglas, a certified raw foods educator from Whole Raw Food Now (www.wholerawfoodnow.com), will host a free workshop on raw foods November 13 from 1-3 p.m. in Alpine. The even will feature cooking tips, the latest science, and free smoothie samples.
November 10, 2010 (Alpine)--So much of our focus on food is guided by products that are quick, easy, and advertised as nutritious and delicious. Unfortunately, our focus is often not based on what science has revealed are the most critical types of food to provide sustainable energy and healing for the human body. If we were paying attention to the science behind the food we ate, we would definitely be eating less processed and cooked food--and consuming more whole, raw, plant-based food.
November 9, 2010 (Alpine) Artists perform in period costumes and even guests are invited to attend in historical fashions at the Chamber Music Extravaganza on November 13 at 4 p.m. at Christ the King Episcopal Church, 1460 Midway Drive in Alpine.
Enjoy the music of Mozart, Brahams, & Schumann directed by Sylvia Lorraine Hartman,featuring the Alpine Chamber Players Piano Quartet with cello, vocal and flute solos, and the Christ the King Singers.
November 4, 2010 (Poway) - Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy, two of the world's most celebrated Celtic fiddlers and the power couple of the Canadian fiddling world, return to Poway for a concert at 8 p.m. on Saturday, November 6th.
Known for her flamboyant style and trademark step-dancing, MacMaster is the sweetheart superstar of the Cape Breton fiddle who packed the house in Poway in 2008. Leahy is part of the family group Leahy, which dazzled audiences in 2006 and 2008. Now these world-class talents (who are married) join forces in a whirlwind of fiddle-driven music, dance and song.
October 29, 2010 (Ramona)--What could be spookier than a haunted hike in the woods? Dos Picos CountyPark in Ramona is offering a haunted trail hike on Saturday, October 30th at 7:30 and 8 p.m.
October 28, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – East County Magazine editor Miriam Raftery is among the nominees for a Women in Leadership Award. Winners will be announced Friday, October 29 at the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce’s annual Women in Leadership luncheon at the Doubletree Hotel in Mission Valley.
For reservations, visit http://www.eastcountychamber.org/events. For a list of nominees and categories, scroll down.
October 15, 2010 (Spring Valley) – The first annual Spring Valley Tailgate & BBQ Festival will be hosted this Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 pm. In front of Cali Comfort Restaurant & Sports Bar. Troy Street will be closed down between Bancroft and Central avenues for the event, which includes BBQ samples, family activities, a children’s fun zone, street vendors, and more.
Development interests seek to make it easier to build housing projects in rural areas
October 9, 2010 (San Diego) – Work has been underway for years to update the County’s General Plan. But in August, a coalition headed by the Building Industry Association, San Diego Realtors Associations, and other pro-development interests has published a white paper calling for drastic changes. Supervisors will hear the proposal on October 20th at 9 a.m.
“The paper insists that clustering of housing into small, non-conforming lots should be a developer’s right,” said Valle de Oro Community Planning group chairman Jack Phillips, in a letter warning County residents that the result could be condominiums on Mt. Helix and in other semi-rural areas. “If this type of `anything goes’ future development is allowed, then our property values will probably go, too.”
October 5, 2010 (El Cajon) -- Artwork created by faculty members of the Grossmont College Art Department will be on display through Oct. 28 at the Hyde Art Gallery, located on campus. The public is invited to view the exhibition of approximately 55 pieces from 29 different art department instructors.