El Cajon

HEAD-ON COLLISION CAUSED BY CAJON VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT DRIVER INJURES THREE

By Miriam Raftery
 
October 4, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) -- A Cajon Valley School District Ford pickup towing a trailer veered into the path of an oncoming Ford Fusion sedan this morning on Avocado Boulevard near Mount Helix, the California Highway Patrol reports. The head-on collision sent the vehicles careening into the front yard of a home, injuring both drivers and an infant in a child safety seat.  

450 RALLY AT DOWNTOWN EL CAJON PARK IN SOLIDARITY WITH PROTESTERS IN IRAQ

Dozens dead, estimates of injured range from 600 to nearly 1,200

Photo: Maryam Deuge and Mina Abdelahad want Iraq to have water, food, electricity, internet and jobs, and an end to widespread corruption

By Jonathan Goetz

October 4, 2019 (El Cajon) - “Over the last 24 hours all these people in Iraq are dying,” Mina Abdelahad told East County Magazine at an impromptu rally yesterday in downtown El Cajon following reports of brutal crackdowns on protesters in Baghdad.

Around 450 protesters gathered in El Cajon, home to tens of thousands of Iraqi immigrants and refugees. The local protesters stand in solidarity with demonstrators in Iraq and decried the violent crackdowns on protesters in Iraq that have injured between 600 and 1,200 people, killing 20 to 30 or more.

Abdelahad shows us graphic pictures on her phone: people carrying dead bodies, a child with a gunshot wound, and protesters weeping over a dead one-year-old girl. As of Thursday, Al-Jazeera put the death toll at 20, the Associated Press 33, CNN 22, Fox 31 and Reuters 27. 

FOUR RIVALS DROP OUT AND ENDORSE ISSA IN RACE TO REPLACE HUNTER; DEMAIO DISRUPTS WITH COMPETING RALLY

 

CA Senator Brian Jones, also running, chides non-resident candidates for holding press conference in “wrong district”  

Video excerpt: Darrell Issa

Video excerpt: Carl DeMaio

by Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

September 26, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The weather in El Cajon Thursday morning was cloudy and drizzly in front of City Hall. But the political rhetoric was sweltering. In the race for San Diego’s 50th Congressional District, four Republican candidates for the seat bowed out and swung their support to former 49th District Congressman Darrell Issa.

Another candidate, former San Diego City Councilman and conservative radio host Carl DeMaio, held a rival press conference some 100 feet away to attack Issa. State Senator Brian Jones, who is also running, chose to remain above the fray by staying away.

PHOTO OF THE WEEK: HOLY HALLOWEEN, BATMAN! GIANT PUMPKIN GROWN IN EAST COUNTY

East County News Service

September 27, 2019 (El Cajon) – Rebecca Jefferis-Williamson snapped this image of a Batman-themed giant pumpkin grown in a rural area of unincorporated El Cajon.

J. Jansson-Berndes says he supplied the special seeds and Vince George grew it under his tutelage. It weighs 1,036 lbs.-- more than half a ton. 

Jansson-Berndes drove up with the pumpkin to participate in the Irvine Park Railroads'  2019 Great Pumpkin Weigh - Off. But it wasn't the biggest entry!

EVACUATIONS LIFTED IN DEHESA; FIRE NOW 21% CONTAINED

 

Sign up for free East County Wildfire and Emergency Alerts:  https://www.eastcountymagazine.org/wild-fire-alerts

September 25, 2019 8 a.m. -- The Dehesa Fire is now 21% contained, Cal Fire reports. 

9 p.m. -- All evacuation orders, warnings and road closures have been lifted, County Emergency Sevices reoprts.
 
5:30 p.m.  --The  Sheriff’s Department has issued an evacuation order in the area of Dehesa Road and Sloane Canyon Road, County Emergency Services reports.  A temporary evacuation point has been designated at Los Coches Middle School located at 9669 Dunbar Lane in El Cajon. If you need emergency assistance with evacuation, call 9-1-1.  The fire has burned over 150 acres, according to Cal Fire.
 
4:25 p.m. -- CHP is preparing to shut down Sloan Canyon at Dehesa and eastbound Dehesa from  Casino Road to Japatul
 
3:50 p.m. -- The #DehesaFire is now 25 acres and burning at a rapid rate of  speed, Cal Fire reports.

East County Wildfire & Emergency Alert Service

Photo, right by Doug Stocker, taken from the gun club on Sycuan Truck Trail

September 24, 2019 (San Diego's East County) -- A brush fire reported by Cal Fire is burning east of Dehesa Road near Sloan Canyon, east of the Sycuan Casino, Cal Fire reports.  Ground crews are battling the #DehesaFire and multiple air tankers have been requested. Scanner traffic indicates additional engine crews have been requested for structure protection.

Firefighers from multiple agencies meanwhile have suppressed a small brush fire near West Main and Travelodge in El Cajon  that scorched 1.5 and burned within 50 feet of homes in Fletcher Hills.  The cause remains under investigation.

FIRE IN FLETCHER HILLS HALTED AT 1.5 ACRES

East County News Service

Photo: Heartland Fire & Rescue

September 24, 2019 (El Cajon) -- Crews from multilpe agencies held a brush fire that began in a canyon around 1:10 p.m. today in Fletcher Hills to 1.5 acres, with no property damage or injuries reported.

According to Sonny Saghera,  public information officer at Heartland Fire & Rescue, Heartland crews from El Cajon and La Mesa, assisted by crews from San Diego Fire & Rescue, Barona, Viejas, San Miguel, Cal Fire, Santee and Lakeside, assisted by El Cajon Public Work and Police were dispatched to multiple reports of a hillside on fire near the intersection of W. Main St. and S.Travelodge Dr.

MOTORCYCLIST, 20, FROM EL CAJON SUSTAINS LIFE-THREATENING INJURY ON OLDE HIGHWAY 80

By Miriam Raftery
 
September 24, 2019 (El Cajon) – A 20-year-old motorcyclist from El Cajon has been rushed by ambulance to Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego after sustaining life-threatening injuries in a collision today at 2 p.m.

EL CAJON SEEKS VOLUNTEERS FOR TEEN COALITION

Source: City of El Cajon

September 24, 2019 (El Cajon) --“Engage, educate, and empower!” These are the goals of the City’s Teen Coalition. The City is seeking members to serve on the 2019-20 Teen Coalition. With monthly meetings at Renette Recreation Center, members will develop their leadership skills, get involved through community service, and explore strategies to address youth issues. The coalition sponsors the annual “Youth of the Year” award which recognizes individuals who go above and beyond in serving their community. 

EL CAJON COUNCIL MOVES TO END COMMISSIONS ON ARTS AND CULTURE, HUMAN RELATIONS AND VETERANS

 

Update Sept. 27, 2019 -- Estela de Los Rios,  a community leader who plans to run for El Cajon City Council, sent these comments objecting to the demise of the commissions.  "I believe it our right as citizens of El Cajon to have these board commissions and have them open until we seek people to serve on them. There has to be a better way to recruit. This is a prime example of the city council's actions that need to change for the best interest of our city. It makes no sense to have a Magnolia Performing Center but no Arts Commission?"

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

September 23, 2019 (El Cajon) – The agenda for tomorrow’s El Cajon City Council meeting includes second reading and adoption of a code amendment to eliminate three city entities  The Veterans’ Commission, the Commission on Arts and Culture, and the Human Relations Commission, which advises the council on diversity issues.

HAUNTFEST BRINGS SPOOKY FAMILY FUN TO EL CAJON OCT. 25

By Miriam Raftery

September 23, 2019 (El Cajon) – The 8th annual HauntFest in downtown El Cajon is expected to draw around 40,000 visitors in Friday, October 25th from 5 to 10 p.m. 

This year, HauntFest includes live music on two stages, costume contests on the Main Street stage, expanded carnival rides and games, candy challenge activities, a Kidz Zone, face painting, performances by TNT dancers and the Arts in Motion Crew and Junior Crew. There’s also the St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center Pumpkin Patch, craft and game booths, an LED rock wall, inflatable jumps for kids, showings of the first two Harry Potter movies and more.

MS. SMARTY-PLANTS GOES BATTY OCT. 12

East County News Service

September 23, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) -- Are you ready to have fun and learn about creatures whooo go BOOOO in the night?  The Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College invites you to don your Halloween costume for “Ms. Smarty-Plants Goes Batty” on October 12 from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

EL CAJON OKTOBERFEST SEPT. 27-OCT. 6 INCLUDES DRAWING FOR TRIP TO GERMANY

East County News Service

September 20, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The German-American Club of San Diego hosts its annual Oktoberfest at its headquarters in El Cajon on the last weekend of September and the first weekend of October.  A trip for two to Germany will be the grand prize for a lucky winner in prize drawings during the event.

READER’S EDITORIAL: IT’S TIME TO STOP THE MARKETING AND SALES OF VAPING DEVICES AND FLAVORED PRODUCTS USED IN THEM

We applaud the 26 California jurisdictions that have taken these steps and encourage El Cajon to join them.” – Dana Stevens

By Dana Stevens, Community Action Service & Advocacy (CASA)

Photo: Chance Ammirata shared these photos on Twitter of his collapsed lung and lung spots, which doctors attributed to vaping. The 18-year-old Florida student underwent emergency surgery and was told he can no longer do cross country running or scuba diving.

September 20, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Hundreds of people have been hospitalized across the country, including 12 here in San Diego, by a respiratory illness linked to vaping that has claimed eight lives – sadly this number seems to increase daily. If emergency rooms were facing this rush of illness from any other source, it would have been pulled from the shelves within days. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the government agency that regulates tobacco products, describes an outbreak as when two or more people get the same illness from the same food or drink contaminant. Food producers recall their product from the marketplace when the products are mislabeled or causes illness. Vaping devices, the flavored liquid used in those devices, and the liquid form of THC are not regulated by the FDA.  

SUSPECT IN SECURITY SHIRT WANTED FOR GUNNING DOWN MAN AT POT SHOP IN EL CAJON

Suspect, a Hispanic man wearing a black security shirt, fled on a blue motorcycle and is considered armed and dangerous.
 
By Miriam Raftery

September 20, 2019 (El Cajon) – El Cajon Police are searching for a suspect who gunned down a man inside an illegal marijuana dispensary at 350 West Douglas in El Cajon Thursday night around 11:45 p.m.

WALDRON BILL WOULD REQUIRE VOTERS’ APPROVAL FOR CHANGES TO TRANSNET FUNDING ALLOCATION

By Miriam Raftery
 
September 17, 2019 (Escondido) – For months, officials in East County and North County have assailed as “highway robbery” a plan announced by the San Diego Regional Association of Governments (SANDAG)  to cancel some highway projects and instead, spend TransNet extension funds approved by voters in 2004 on transit projects such as high-speed rail and shared electric vehicles instead.

BOARD VOTES TO PRESERVE 300 ACRES OF AGRICULTURAL LAND

By Gig ConaughtonCounty of San Diego Communications Office

September 16, 2019 (San Diego) - San Diego County Supervisors voted Wednesday to pay property owners to keep roughly 300 acres of their land in agricultural production instead of possibly selling it into development, as part of a program to preserve agriculture and still support farmers and ranchers.

COUNTESS LUANN SHINES AT MAGNOLIA'S DEBUT

Review and photos by Gerald Stevenson 

 

September 15, 2019 (El Cajon) -- What can be said about the incomparable Luann de Lesseps? The sky is the limit, her fans would say. Also known as The Countess, she held the audience in the palm of her hand during the opening week of El Cajon’s newly reborn concert hall, The Magnolia.

 

Friday the 13th was Luann’s night to entertain. Bringing her cabaret show to El Cajon was a nice gift for our city, and the wider region of San Diego. My only wish was for her to remind the audience where we are:  El Cajon, not San Diego. Come on Luann, give our city some recognition! But, that’s a small thing. Maybe future stars will give us a shout out.

 

The Magnolia was a sell out on Friday. The audience was frisky and full of life, eventually clapping and chanting, "Luann! Luann! Luann!’ as encouragement, hoping their cries reached her dressing room. With phone cameras in everyone’s hands, the fans had time to take "selfies" and photos of the growing crowd.

EL CAJON POLICE CHIEF HONORED UPON RETIREMENT

By Miriam Raftery
 
Photos of Chief Davis’ walk-out ceremony by Catherine Martin.
 
September 15, 2019 (El Cajon) – After 33 years of service with the El Cajon Police Department, Chief Davis retired on Friday. He received salutes and hugs as he walked out of the station in civilian clothes, turning over the helm to his replacement, Mike Moulton.

CHALDEAN-AMERICAN FESTIVAL SEPT. 28-29 OFFERS CULTURAL CELEBRATION FOR THE COMMUNITY

By Miriam Raftery
 
September 15, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The Chaldean community invites you, your family and friends to the 8th annual Chaldean-American festival September 28-29 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Hillsdale Middle School, located at 1309 Brabham St, El Cajon.

RAY LUTZ, CITIZENS OVERSIGHT FOUNDER, IS LATEST TO WEIGH RUN FOR CONGRESS IN 53RD DISTRICT SEAT AFTER SUSAN DAVIS ANNOUNCES RETIREMENT

By Miriam Raftery

September 12, 2019 (El Cajon) – Ray Lutz, founder of the nonprofit watchdog group Citizens Oversight in El Cajon, announced today that he has formed an exploratory committee for a possible run for the 53rd Congressional district seat.  Congresswoman Susan Davis announced last week that she will not be seeking reelection.

Lutz, a Democrat, lives in the 53rd district since redistricting in 2010, though he previously ran against Rep. Duncan Hunter back in 2008.

Lutz and the organization he founded have been instrumental in attaining several landmark actions in our region ranging from a lawsuit that won $775 million for local ratepayers to a succesful fight that helped save East County's peforming arts center,as well as leading efforts to improve safety of  nuclear waste storage and battling to keep Blackwater out of the backcountry.

EL CAJON TO WEIGH VAPING RESTRICTIONS OCT. 8; FEDS ANNOUNCE BAN ON FLAVORED E-CIGARETTES

By Miriam Raftery
 
Photo: Young woman vaping, image via Pixabay
 
September 11, 2019 (El Cajon) – El Cajon’s city council will be considering a ban or other restrictions on sales of vaping products, such as banning flavored vapes, at its October 8th meeting at 3 p.m.  
 
Councilman Gary Kendrick, who asked that the issue be added to the agenda, told  ECM, “I may take some heat for this, but it’s the right thing to do.”

20TH ANNIVERSARY CONCERT NOV. 16 BENEFITS WATER CONSERVATION GARDEN

East County News Service

September 11, 2019 (El Cajon) -- Since 1999, The Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College has been at the forefront of saving water and other natural resources. To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the Garden is hosting a benefit concert on Saturday, November 16th. 

EAST COUNTY DINING CLUB INVITES YOU TO OUR MIDEAST FEAST SEPT. 26 (RSVP BY SEPT. 17)

 

This event has been cancelled due to not enough RSVPs to meet the restaurant's minimum.  Refunds will be issued to those who purchased tickets. 

September 9, 2019 (El Cajon) -- Our next East County Dining Club event is a Mideast feast at Happy Times Mediterranean Restaurant (2441 Jamacha Rd., El Cajon in the Rancho San Diego area) on Thursday, September 26 at 6:30 p.m.

Come savor the flavors of Iraq with authentic foods and a special musical performance by Fouad Sawa and the Peace Band performing on authentic Middle Eastern instruments. Meet the media and make new friends, plus we'll have opportunities win win prizes.

This restaurant requires us to RSVP no later than Sept. 17 - no exceptions  Early reservations are strongly recommended!

THE MAGNOLIA BLOOMS: REVITALIZED PERFORMING ARTS CENTER REOPENS WITH COMMUNITY CELEBRATION

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos: New magnolia tree and crowd outside; vocalist Stephanie Noriega and Mayor Bill Wells performing piano and vocal accompaniment of "Hallelujah" at grand opening of The Magnolia performing arts center

September 11, 2019 (El Cajon) – Community members from across the region flocked to the grand opening of The Magnolia performing arts center in downtown El Cajon yesterday.  More than $8 million has been spent remodeling the former East County Performing Arts Center, which had been closed for a decade but has now blossomed anew.

As the setting sun sent a starburst shining through a newly planted magnolia tree out front, visitors inside saw renovations including a new VIP viewing area, multiple bars serving up food and beverages including cocktails, backstage dressing rooms,  a shimmering new gold curtain and more.

HOW HOT WILL IT GET WHERE YOU LIVE?

By Miriam Raftery

 

Roger Coppock contributed to this story

 

September 8, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Extreme heat is poised to rise steeply in frequency and severity over the coming decades, bringing unprecedented health risks for people and communities across the country. That’s the disturbing finding of the Union of Concerned Scientists in a just-issued report titled Killer Heat in the United States: Climate Choices and the Future of Dangerously Hot Days.

CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES AT CUYAMACA COLLEGE FEATURES TOP MUSICIANS, INCLUDING JASON VIEAUX AND BACH COLLEGIUM SAN DIEGO

Source:  Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District

September 6, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) - The ECHO Chamber Music Series, now in its third year, is taking its 2019-2020 season at Cuyamaca College’s Samuel M. Ciccati Performing Arts Theatre to new heights with 14 concerts featuring performers such as Jason Vieaux, Bach Collegium, the Dalí Quartet, and members of the San Diego Symphony and other internationally acclaimed musicians who have performed across the globe.

SYCUAN POWWOW SEPT. 6-8 HONORS NATIVE AMERICAN TRADITIONS

 

The Sycuan band of the Kumeyaay nation will hold its 30th annual powwow from Friday evening, September 6 through Sunday, September 8 at the Sycuan powwow ground (5577 Dehesa Rd., El Cajon). 

 

The event features bird singing and Native American dance competitions, drumming, Native arts and crafts vendors, foods and more.

GRAND OPENING AT THE MAGNOLIA SEPT. 10: CURTAIN RISES ANEW ON PERFORMING ARTS CENTER IN EL CAJON

By Miriam Raftery

 

September 5, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The Magnolia Center, formerly known as the East County Performing Arts Center, will host its much anticipated grand reopening on September 10th from 5 to 8 p.m. The City of El Cajon and Live Nation invite the public to the event which includes food, fun, activities, prizes, tours, presentations.

WHY WAIT TO GO SOLAR? SOLAR EXPERIENCE SEPT. 7 IN RANCHO SAN DIEGO

By Megan Lacy
 
September 4, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) - Join your East County neighbors for a powerful Q&A with nationally certified energy practitioners and nonprofit experts to find out how you can go solar and secure the 30% federal tax credit in 2019 before it sunsets. Learn the latest technologies, how solar works, if solar will work for your home, battery storage and integration, available state and federal incentives and much more.

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