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EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE COLUMNISTS

MOUNTAIN CHILD MUSINGS: SHOCK AND PAUSE

By Jake Zawlacki
File photo: Peter Carzis, speaking at a 2015 La Mesa City Council meeting
 
January 23, 2020 (La Mesa) -- The night I heard of Peter Carzis’ arrest, I was shocked. I was shocked because I had often gone to Peter’s Men’s Apparel, his eponymous men’s clothing store in La Mesa, and had always known him to be a kind man. He had reminded me of the old Hollywood-type black and white movies with their pressed suits and greased hair and salesman type of smile. He was cool in the old sense of the word.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JAN. 25-FEB. 29

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features East County Dining Club’s Flamenco music and Spanish tapas night at the Spacebar Café and Winebar in La Mesa– benefitting our own East County Magazine. 

Other events coming up include a powwow at Cuyamaca College, Hawk Watch in Ramona, well known performers at the Magnolia Center in El Cajon, Restaurant Month in Julian, birdwatching in Lakeside, a Chapman Stick concert at Mission Trails Church, Trivia Nights at Wine Works in La Mesa, and Agatha Christie’s murder mystery “The Hollow” onstage at Lamplighters in La Mesa.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

GET "FIRED UP" THE SAFE WAY!

CHIEF'S CORNER : FIREPLACE SAFETY

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

 

January 20, 2020 (San Diego) -- It’s been pretty chilly lately and nothing beats a nice fire in the fireplace during winter months. Though fires may keep us warm, there are hazards that need to be addressed.

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) encourages you to practice the following fire safety steps to keep those home fires safely burning says DiGiovanna. Remember, fire safety is your personal responsibility as fire prevention starts with you!

Here are some fireplace safety tips to help keep you safe:

MOUNTAIN CHILD MUSINGS: AN ASTRAL NEW YEAR

By Jake Zawlacki
 
January 14, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- You may have spent your New Year’s Eve getting drinks, watching a big plastic ball drop, or looking at fireworks. I didn’t. I brought my New Year in a little early, on December 29th. And it arrived in three steps, in a separate dimension.
 
First, my astral body walked through blue flames, my many negative life experiences burning like kindling.
 
Next, my body walked through yellow flames, the many positive attributes cultivated over a millennia of past lives rejoining my earthly self.

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE (OUT OF) CONTROL

By David R. Shorey
East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies
Photos: Creative Commons
 
January 9, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- If you are looking for an alcoholic drink in East County, you’re in luck. It doesn’t matter if it’s a local watering hole where you can belly up to a bar and wet your whistle, or a retailer, where you can grab a bottle and take it home. The East County has plenty of options.
 
Perhaps too many.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JAN. 10-FEB. 28

By Miriam Raftery

January 9, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features Hawk Watch in Ramona, concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon, the silent movie Passion of Joan of Arc in Borrego Springs, and Open Farm Day at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona.

Plus we’ll have a preview of coming events including San Diego restaurant week and Julian’s restaurant month, trivia nights at Wine Works in La Mesa, tapas and a flamenco show at Spacebar Café in La Mesa, and a Lamplighter’s Theater production of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery play, The Hollow.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

REAL ESTATE REALITY: INSPECTION WOES--IT’S GOOD TO KNOW

By Maryanne Jackson Real Estate Broker

January 9, 2020 (San Diego’s East County)  

Dear Maryanne,

My wife and I are considering selling our home in Spring Valley and purchasing 

a larger home in the same area. We will need to use the proceeds from the sale to UPSIZE.

Is it recommended to hire a home inspector prior to putting our home up for sale? 

If so, what is the advantage of us putting the 450.00 out to do this. Will the buyer still need to get their own home inspection during the escrow investigation process?

Eric J. Spring Valley, CA

CHIEF’S CORNER: GAS LEAKS IN THE HOME

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

January 5, 2020 (San Diego) -- Got Gas?  As temperatures cool down, home heating use goes up. Additionally firefighters respond to more reports of gas inside a structure call. It’s important for homeowners and renters to inspect their home-heating appliances and perform any maintenance necessary to avoid any health or safety hazards.

If you smell gas in your home or your carbon monoxide detector goes off, immediately evacuate the house and call 911.

BEST OF EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JAN. 4-FEB. 28

By Miriam Raftery,
 
January 4, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features live music at San Pasqual Winery in La Mesa, a full moon walk in Anza-Borrego, and concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon. 
 
Plus we’ll have a preview of coming events including the silent movie Passion of Joan of Arc in Borrego, Open Farm Weekend at Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona, trivia nights at Wine Works in La Mesa, tapas and a flamenco show at Spacebar Café in La Mesa, and a Lamplighter’s Theater production of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery play, The Hollow.
 
So click Read More for all of these events and many more!

MOUNTAIN CHILD MUSINGS: A MAGICAL PLACE

By Jake Zawlacki

December 30, 2019 (Santee) -- As we are all in the thick of holiday magic, I‘d like to write about the most magical place in East County: The Santee Swap Meet. I’ve been swap-meeting since my youth, and I’ve never spent a dull morning walking the wide aisles of other people’s junk. For the uninitiated, the Santee Swap Meet is located on the same premises as the Santee Drive In. Cost of entry for buyers is $2 and the cost for a space to sell is $28 on Saturday and $35 on Sunday. 

The Swap Meet is a relic of a forgotten era. Sure, there’s still Spring Valley and Kobey’s going strong, but most sellers there are vendors importing crap from China or India or Mexico and selling it for profit. It’s a full-time job. The Santee Swap Meet is not that place.

It’s the only time in East County I heard a gunshot, but wasn’t worried. Somebody was just testing it out. It’s the only public place where I’ve seen Nazi regalia for sale without hearing a single protest. And it’s the only place I’ve ever seen ancient Chinese erotic paraphernalia made of jade and serpentine. It’s an unusual kind of place.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS DEC. 21-FEB. 4

East County News Service

December 19, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County features North Pole Limited train rides in Campo, Julian Victorian Christmas teas, and the Waits live at  San Pasqual Winery’s tasting room in La Mesa. 

Plus we’ll have a preview of coming events including concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon, a Boogie Woogie New Year’s Party at the Courtyard Marriott in El Cajon, a Roaring 20s New Year’s Eve bash at Viejas, and open farm weekend at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona,

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

REAL ESTATE REALITY: WHO PAYS WHAT ON A REAL ESTATE PURCHASE IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA?

By Maryanne Jackson Real Estate Broker

December 10, 2019 (San Diego’s East County)

Dear Maryanne,

Can you clarify for us whom pays for what on a property purchase/sale in Southern California?

Joel B and Jessica M.

POLITICAL WRANGLING: FLAME WARS IN ALPINE, SOCIAL MEDIA RESPONSES TO SANTEE SLOGAN AND MORE

By Buck Schott
 
December 12, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – This week, we bring you sizzling barbs lobbed by East County public officials, ouster of a local school board president off the state school boards association, and snarky responses on social media to Santee’s new city slogan and logo. 

MOUNTAIN CHILD MUSINGS: AN ANALOG MIND

By Jake Zawlacki

Photo by Toby A. Cox

 

December 9, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- I would like to jump into some crazy stuff, but I feel like you’re just getting to know me; the satire and controversy can wait. I want  to build a foundation, but I first need to define my mind. I have an analog mind, and the only way to really define it is against a digital one. The best way to understand the difference between analog and digital is that analog is based on infinite gradation whereas digital is all 0s and 1s. A wave can have an infinite amount of unique points. A 0 or 1 cannot. They are either 0 or 1. There is no in between.

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: DECEMBER IS NATIONAL IMPAIRED DRIVING PREVENTION MONTH

By David R. Shorey

East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies

December 5, 2019  (San Diego’s East County) -- Holiday time in the East County is marked with tree lightings, trips to the snowcapped peaks, and the sound of holiday music floating in the air. It is also the most popular time of year for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), this time of year has the highest rate of driving under the influence incidents, injuries and deaths. In fact, preventable alcohol-related deaths account for almost one-third of all traffic fatalities, according to NHTSA.

That’s why each year, December is declared National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. Law enforcement officials in the East County participate by annually increasing patrols and DUI checkpoints in the region. We observe Impaired Driving Prevention Month to highlight steps we can take to improve safety on our streets and raise awareness of these preventable dangers.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS DEC. 6-31

By Miriam Raftery

December 3, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features two Christmas plays at Lamplighters Theatre in La Mesa, upcoming concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon, North Pole Limited holiday train rides in Campo, a Holiday Gift Shoppe at the Water Conservation Garden, Alpine's Parade of Lights and Snow Festival, a Brotherhood of Man dance program in La Mesa, and Lakeside’s Spirit of Christmas on Maine.

Plus we’ll have a preview of events later on this month including East County Magazine’s Feasting & Merrymaking Holiday Party, Ramona’s Christmas tree lighting, a European Christmas market and caroling atop Mt. Helix, Santa at Santee Lakes, Julian Victorian Christmas teas,  La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village, Carols by Candlelight in Escondido, and a Paris Holiday Tea in El Cajon, a Boogie Woogie New Year’s Party at the Courtyard Marriott in El Cajon, and a Roaring 20s New Year’s Eve bash at Viejas.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: AVOID THE BLACK FRIDAY BLUES BY BEING PREPARED

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

November 25, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- People camped out in line for hours, anticipating the release of the latest gaming system. Shoppers storming store doors as they open, trampling over others in their excitement. Punches thrown over the last $300 flat screen TV. That's right, folks.  This Friday is Black Friday. And it can get nasty.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 29-DEC. 31

By Miriam Raftery

November 25, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features El Cajon's Holiday on Main, upcoming concerts at the Magnolia, North Pole Limited holiday train rides in Campo, a Holiday Gift Shoppe at the Water Conservation Garden, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona and a Julian Country Christmas.

Plus, we have a preview of December events including Alpine's Parade of Lights and Snow Festival, a Brotherhood of Man dance program in La Mesa, Lakeside’s Spirit of Christmas on Maine, Ramona’s Christmas tree lighting, a European Christmas market and caroling atop Mt. Helix, Santa at Santee Lakes, La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village, Carols by Candlelight, and a Paris Holiday Tea in El Cajon and a Roaring 20s New Year’s Eve bash at Viejas.

 

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

MOUNTAIN CHILD MUSINGS: WHAT IS A MOUNTAIN CHILD?







By Jake Zawlacki

Photo Credit Fern Bowen, 1947

November 25, 2019 (Jamul) -- “Mountain child” is a term I first heard when looking at a class photo of my grandfather. In the small Lyons Valley elementary school of 1947, he stood amongst two of his sisters, he and the youngest with a particularly stern face.

“Look at them. They’re like wild mountain children,” my Dad said, smiling at the black and white photo. It was true; they looked more like children of the corn than civilization standing in the dirt, some with bare feet. But most looked happy.

EARTHTALK®: DO LAWN CHEMICALS CAUSE CANCER IN DOGS?

From the Editors of E - The Environmental Magazine
 
November 24, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that lawn chemicals can cause canine cancer, and if so, how can I protect my dog? --Bill W., Ithaca, NY
 
Unfortunately, the answer may very well be yes. A 2012 study published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal, Environmental Research, found that exposure to certain lawn care products, such as the nearly ubiquitous herbicide 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2 4-D for short), increases dogs’ chances of developing Canine Malignant Lymphoma (CML) by 70 percent. When ingested repeatedly, 2 4-D acts as an endocrine disruptor, mutating a dog’s white blood cell count allowing malignant tumor cells to replicate unchecked. While obviously worrisome for dogs and those of us who love them, the implications for people aren’t good either, given the similarities between the onset of CML in canines and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in humans.

CHIEF’S CORNER: LET’S TALK TURKEY – THE SAFE WAY

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

November 18, 2019 (San Diego) -- Thanksgiving signifies the beginning of the holiday season and many of us will be spending more time in the kitchen preparing for the holidays. Thanksgiving Day is the leading day for home cooking fires, with three times as many occurring on Thanksgiving as any other day of the year.  

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 22 - DEC. 24

East County News Service

November 17, 2019 (San Diego's East County) - This week’s Destination East County features pianorama in La Mesa, the Mother Goose Parade in El Cajon, a Thanksgiving feast at a historic lodge in Julian.

Plus, we have a preview of coming events including upcoming concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon, North Pole Limited holiday train rides in Campo, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona, a Julian Country Christmas, Alpine's Parade of Lights and Snow Festival, a Brotherhood of Man dance program in La Mesa, Lakeside’s Spirit of Christmas on Maine, Ramona’s Christmas tree lighting, a European Christmas market and caroling atop Mt. Helix, Santa at Santee Lakes,  La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village, and a Paris Holiday Tea in El Cajon to benefit local arts.

 

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: EAST COUNTY YOUTH COALITION IS THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD

By David R. Shorey, East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies

 

Photo:  East County Youth Coalition members hold up the blankets they are making to help families in need who have been affected by domestic violence, substance abuse in the home, and children in foster care. The blankets will be completed in time for the holidays. Photo courtesy IPS

 

November 13, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Youth in East County are making an important positive impact on health and safety in their communities and are acquiring leadership skills in the process. Through the East County Youth Coalition, high school students advocate against underage alcohol and drug use and focus on activities that promote healthy schools, neighborhoods, and families. Coalition members are especially concerned about adults who make it easy to obtain alcohol and marijuana, both in the home and through retail stores. 

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 9 - DEC. 14

East County News Service

 

November 5, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County features a fall festival in Casa de Oro, a Cultural Arts Expo in El Cajon a Multicultural Diversity Event in Lemon Grove.

 

Plus, we have a preview of coming events including concerts at the Magnolia Center, 

the Mother Goose Parade in El Cajon, Pianorama in La Mesa, a Thanksgiving Feast at Pine Hills Lodge in Julian, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona, a Julian Country Christmas, Lakeside’s Spirit of Christmas on Maine, a Christmas celebration on Mt. Helix, Ramona’s Christmas Tree lighting, Santa at Santee Lakes, and La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village. 

 

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

REAL ESTATE REALITY: HOME SHOWING TIPS, MAKING A STRONG FIRST IMPRESSION

By Maryanne Jackson, Real estate broker, CNE, CPRES.

November 3, 2019 (San Diego's East County)

Dear Maryanne,

My mother is selling her home soon. Are there any important steps she should know about when people come to look at her property?

Is it acceptable for her and her cats to be there?

Lorie B., Spring Valley

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 31-NOV. 30

By Miriam Raftery

October 30, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features a Halloween bash at Parkway Plaza and trick-or-treating at Grossmont Center and in the La Mesa Village.

Plus, we have a preview of coming events I November including the Ramona Art and Wine Festival, concerts at the Magnolia Center, a fall festival in Casa de Oro, a Cultural Arts Expo in El Cajon, a Multicultural Diversity Event in Lemon Grove, the Mother Goose Parade, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona, and a Julian Country Christmas.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 25 - NOV. 30

By Miriam Raftery

October 16, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features our own haunting Halloween Party, Matilda the Musical in Spring Valley, On Golden Pond in La Mesa, a Chamber music series at Cuyamaca College, Fall at the farm in Julian, a pumpkin patch at Summers Past Farms, headliner concerts at the Magnolia Center in El Cajon, trick or treating in the La Mesa Village, the Julian Autumn Jubilee, Borrego Days Festival and Parade, Pints 4 the Park, and a Green Homes Tour.

Plus, we have a preview of coming events including HauntFest on Main in El Cajon, the Ramona Art & Wine Festival, costume contests for people and pets at Bates Nut Farm, spooky campovers at Lake Jennings, a Halloween Bash at Parkway Plaza, trick or treating at Grossmont Center, a Cultural Arts Expo in El Cajon, the Mother Goose Parade, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy, and Julian’s Country Christmas.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

REAL ESTATE REALITY: STAYING PUT; EXPERIENCING CONTENTMENT

By Maryanne Jackson 

Photo: Creative Commons

October 14, 2019 (San Diego’s East County)

Dear Maryanne,

My husband and I own a home in La Mesa. We really do not plan on selling or moving any time soon.

However, we are planning on fixing up the place just for us.

I am curious what type of improvements tend to induce homeowners to stay put?

Lesley M.

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: CASA DE ORO DISPLAYS ITS GOLDEN BOUNTY

 

By David R. Shorey, East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies

Photo, left: Casa de Oro Fall Festival 2018, courtesy IPS

 

October 10, 2019 (Spring Valley) - There is no better way to celebrate autumn than Casa de Oro Alliance’s Fourth Annual Fall Festival Nov. 9 at the Spring Valley Academy. The festival is a signature event for the community and highlights a neighborhood alliance that has been successful in tackling alcohol, drug, crime and neighborhood blight issues.

The free family event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. will feature shopping, vendors, games, prizes, entertainment and food trucks. The campus is located at 3900 Conrad Dr., just up the hill from the Campo Road business corridor. More information about the Fall Festival can be found at www.casadeoroalliance.org

The annual Fall Festival is part of a bigger plan by the Alliance to create a historically rich, culturally diverse and thriving community that is attractive, safe, pedestrian friendly and a popular destination for dining, entertainment and shopping.

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