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Ariele Johannsen hosts our popular “Destination East County”program on the East County Magazine Radio show. Our show airs  Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on KNSJ 89.1 FM.  Destination East County is heard on Wednesdays and Fridays each week.

April 1, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) –Spring is in the air this week, complete with spring festivals, baby animals, classical music, poetry and art, golf events, and more! Scroll down for details on many happenings in East County for you and your family.

For months, the Water Conservation Garden, also known as The Garden, on the campus of Cuyamaca College has been building and anticipating their newest addition: a Butterfly Pavilion. Dubbed the Dorcas E. Utter Butterfly Pavilion, the Water Conservation Garden invites the public to a Butterfly Festival for the opening of the pavilion on Saturday, April 5th from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

This festival will include tours, a “pollinator parade” and butterfly release, a butterfly habitat plant sale, butterfly experts, booths and workshops, butterfly discovery lab and kids’ crafts, plus appearances by Ms. Smarty-Plants and Miss Metamorphosis.

Admission is $5 for adults and $1 for children ages 3-17. The Water Conservation Garden is on the campus of Cuyamaca College in the Rancho San Diego area of El Cajon.  For more information, visit

St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center unveils a new vineyard and celebrates a special sneak-peek planting party on Saturday, April 5th,.  At the planting party, guests will have the opportunity to view the vineyard and support the organization by purchasing and planting vines from 9am to 1pm.

For more information about Sophie’s Vineyard and this year’s 16th Annual Morning Glory Brunch, please contact Neil Fullerton at (619) 442-5126 ext. 115 or send an email to St Madeleine Sophie’s Center is located at 2119 E. Madison Avenue in El Cajon.

Project Wildlife’s 5th Annual Wildlife Baby Shower takes place on Saturday, April 5th from 10:oo a.m. to 2:oo p.m. where baby animals will be on display, as well as other rescued wildlife. Guests can bring donations or choose a gift online for the babies through a gift registry at There will be tours of the Triage Center where many of Project Wildlife’s volunteers work with the animals, as well as a kids’ zone with games and activities for the whole family. There will also be an opportunity drawing and a wildlife bazaar for shopping. Project Wildlife’s Central Triage Center is on Sherman Road in San Diego with the party on Custer Ave.

Project Wildlife’s Central Triage Center is on 887 ½ Sherman Road in San Diego. Please visit their website at or call DeVerna Rogers at 858-866-0555 Ext. 201 for more information.

Saturday, April 5th is also the date for the 2nd Annual Lakeside Rodeo Golf Tournament to be held at Cottonwood Golf Club in El Cajon. Proceeds from the four-person scramble tournament will benefit scholarships for students in Lakeside. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. with a shotgun start at 1:oo p.m.

The entry fee is $125 per player. Entry fee includes green fee, cart, range balls, and dinner. Cottonwood Golf Club is located at 3121 Willow Glen Drive in El Cajon. Call 619-219-0346 for more information.

The Developmental Services Continuum, Inc. in Lemon Grove is holding a Pancake Breakfast and Rummage Sale fundraiser this Saturday, April 5th beginning at 8:oo a.m. Pancakes will be served during the Rummage Sale till 11:oo a.m. with the Rummage Sale continuing through 1:oo p.m. The Organization is a non-profit agency that provides support and services for adults and children with developmental disabilities and is located at 7944 Golden Avenue in Lemon Grove. Suggested donation for pancake breakfast is $5 per person.

The Lakeside Library is hosting their annual Art and Poetry Festival on Saturday, April 5th from 11:oo a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  This will be a day of art, poetry, music, and fun for the whole family! The library’s annual Art & Poetry Contest winners will be featured, and all entries will be on display, along with art from the East County Art Association. Visitors can also enjoy a singalong, free lunch, ice cream social, and a magic and bubbles show.

The Lakeside Branch of the San Diego County Library is located on  9839 Vine Street in Lakeside, CA. Their phone number is 619-443-1811.

First Saturday Nature Walks are occurring at Wright's Field Preserve in Alpine. This Saturday, April 5th from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Preserve, Herbalist Myra Bull will be leading the walk with the topic of "Plant Identification & Ethno-botany."

This walk is a free event, and you can find out more info at the Back County Land Trust website at Wright's Field Preserve is located behind Joan MacQueen Middle School at 2001 Tavern Rd in Alpine. Park at the school when you visit the preserve.

Poway's annual Spring Family Festival takes place on Sunday, April 6th from 10:00 a.m. till 4:00 p.m. Main stage bands that will perform at this annual family event include two new acts, Fusion Beat and Nathan James. In addition, back by popular demand are the Navy Band Southwest Destroyers.

This festival is free. For more info, visit

East County Youth Symphony performs a free concert in Lakeside on Sunday, April 6th at 4:00 p.m. at the Lakeside Community Presbyterian Church in Lakeside. The address for Lakeside Community Presbyterian Church is 9908 Channel Road in Lakeside, CA   Phone: 619-843-2739

A free harp concert by three advanced student members of the San Diego Chapter of the American Harp Society will be held on Sunday, April 6th from 3:oo p.m. to 4:oo p.m. at Mission Trails Regional Park.

Performers Heidi Fleischbein, Maho Morikawa and Christina Sumprer, will perform.

Mission Trails Regional Park is located at One Father Junípero Serra Trail in San Carlos.

On Sunday, April 6th from 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m., Happy Trails--a hike/walk amid sage and chaparral with a Mission Trails Regional Park trail guide--will be held for those who want to learn fun facts about the plants and critters that populate our rich and vibrant ecosystems. Hikers should meet inside the Visitor Center. This hike will repeat on several other dates in April as shown below. The MTRP website is Mission Trails Regional Park is located at

One Father Junípero Serra Trail in San Carlos.

Additional date(s):

Saturday, April 5, 2014, 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014, 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m.

Saturday, April 19, 2014, 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m.

Sunday, April 20, 2014, 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 9:30 a.m. to 11:oo a.m.

Now for a preview of upcoming events beginning with more golf:

Junior Golf Clinics for boys and girls ages 6-15 will be held at Cottonwood Golf Club in El Cajon for two consecutive weeks Monday-Thursdays on April 7th through 10th AND April 14th through 17th. Hours are 9:00 a.m. to 12:oo p.m. The clinic covers teaching, range balls, short game, golf swing, etiquette, rules, competition, sportsmanship, and fun.

Contact John Klein at Cottonwood Golf Club located at 3121 Willow Glen Drive in El Cajon. Phone: 619-980-2018. The fee is $149.00.

The Mother Goose Parade Golf Classic on April 10th will also be held at Cottonwood Golf Club in El Cajon. Proceeds will benefit the 2014 Mother Goose Parade.

Registration begins at noon with a shotgun start at 1:00 p.m. Cottonwood Golf Club is located at 3121 Willow Glen Drive in El Cajon Call 619-442-9891 x 15 for more information.

Saturday, April 12th from 9:oo a.m. to 3:oo p.m. is the date for the Jamul Kiwanis Hot Rod Show and Chili Cookoff with drawing prizes, a live band and DJ, food, and children’s play area at Pio Pico/ Thousand Trails on Otay Lakes Rd. in Jamul, CA. This is the same annual event that was held at Simpson’s Nursery on Highway 94 before the nursery closed. Information on how and where to enter your chili, as well as antique vehicle registration, T shirt orders, and more can be found on the website and our East County Magazine calendar. Proceeds for this event fund the Jamul Kiwanis Scholarship Program.

If you are purchasing tickets through the mail, please make checks payable to Jamul Kiwanis and send to P.O. Box 267, Jamul, CA 91935 

The event address is Pio Pico/ Thousand Trails, 14615 Otay Lakes Rd., Jamul. Phone: 619-421-0104

To register to enter your chili, fill out the form at the following web address and send to P.O. Box 267, Jamul, CA 91935:

A former Army base, once the last station of the famous Buffalo soldiers, is hosting a trail ride at the Camp Lockett & Equestrian Facility in Campo on Saturday, April 12th at 10:00 a.m. with sign ups at 9:00 a.m. Participants can experience a trail ride with a wine and cheese tasting at trail’s end. The ride includes a tour of Gloriosa Vineyard, heavy hors d’heuvres and wine tastings.

Camp Lockett Event & Equestrian Facility is located at 799 Forrest Gate Road in Campo. The contact is Susan Leeper at 619-478-2339. Website info is at

Also next weekend, a 16th Annual Morning Glory Brunch will be served at St. Madeleine Sophie’s campus on East Madison Avenue in El Cajon on Saturday, April 12th from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center is an East County vocational day program for more than 400 adults with developmental disabilities. The brunch features a springtime ambience at the center’s own organic garden, food and beverages from over 20 local restaurants, art work from St. Madeleine Sophie’s students and local artists, live music and entertainment, silent and Chinese auctions, and the annual great frog race. Floral arrangements inspired by St. Madeleine’s student artwork will also be displayed.

Contact Neil Fullerton or Julie Rausch at (619) 442-5129 ext. 115 or send an email to Address: St Madeleine Sophie’s Center, 2119 E. Madison Avenue, El Cajon.

That’s all for this week! All of these events and more can be found on our Calendar and in our Festivals and Events section online at




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