El Cajon

CAJON VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT SPENDS OVER A HALF MILLION DOLLARS ON PROMOTIONAL VIDEOS

Superintendent and school board president refuse to answer questions on videos; recent flash mob video cost over $21,500

Photo: Superintendent David Miyashiro in CVUSD flash mob video

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

Miriam Raftery, Editor, also contributed to this report.

October 16, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The internet has revolutionized video marketing. From small businesses to government agencies, organizations can now harness resources at YouTube and other online portals to directly market messages to a target audience.

The Cajon Valley Union School District (CVUSD) has utilized its Youtube channel and other social media portals to disseminate professionally produced video marketing and promotional messages for its school projects and World of Work career path program.

Utilizing taxpayer money, the district has produced and promoted impressive videos such as “A Day in the Life of a Cajon Valley Bus Driver,” “Education and business leaders from Vista and Colorado tour Cajon Valley,” an invitation to a Grandparents Day event, Fall Festivals, Madison Avenue Elementary Lemonade Fundraiser, and numerous WoW (World of Work) videos. The District also produces a monthly “broadcast” with news and events directed to school personnel and staff.

Hefty costs

But critics say the CVUSD is making too much of a good thing, since these videos produced by the district have come with a high price tag.

According to information provided to East County Magazine by the CVUSD in response to a public records request, from July 2014 through June 30, 2019, the district has spent over half a million dollars -- $576,289.60 to be exact -- on marketing and promotional videos.

DESERTED AMUSEMENT PARK IS HOME TO SCARE TRAIL FOR HALLOWEEN

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

October 17, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The Scare Trail at The Haunted Amusement Park, located in the long-deserted Marshal Scotty’s Playland Park in El Cajon, is the perfect setting for chilling thrills during this Halloween season. You have until Oct. 31 to scare yourself silly before they close.

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THE SALVATION ARMY'S EL CAJON RED SHIELD CENTER OPENS TO SERVE EAST COUNTY

East County News Service

(October 17, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The Salvation Army of San Diego announces the opening of the newly completed Red Shield Center at 1025 E. Main Street in El Cajon.

Located on the property adjacent to the current El Cajon Corps, the 29,540-square foot facility will offer more opportunity to positively impact the lives of those in need in the East County. The facility will open Saturday November 2nd. There will be a ribbon cutting with dignitaries at 10am. The public is invited to enjoy the space starting at 11:00am with free tours, games and food.

EAST COUNTY MULTICULTURAL FESTIVAL NOVEMBER 2 AIMS TO DOUBLE ITS NUMBERS IN THIRD YEAR

East County News Service

October 12, 2019 (El Cajon) – The Welcome Newcomer Network will host its third Multicultural Festival on November 2 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at EJE Academies, 851 Johnson Ave. in El Cajon.

The event will include multicultural food, cultural dance, a show of traditional costumes, story-telling, games and raffle drawings. Organizers say that they anticipate close to 1,500 attendees this year. 

ACCUSED MURDERER OF POPULAR EAST COUNTY DENTIST REMAINS IN CUSTODY

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

October 11, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) -- A 65-year-old man accused of murdering his husband, Dr. Blake Synowski, will be facing an El Cajon Superior Court judge on Friday to determine whether he will be granted bail.

EL CAJON ARTIST SKI TORZESKI WINS AWARD

Source: San Diego Watercolor Society

 

Photo: Ski Torzeski with his painting “Above the Timber Line”

 

October 10, 2019 (El Cajon) --  “Above the Timber Line” by nationally recognized artist Ski Torzeski of El Cajon is one of 95 paintings selected by juror Jeannie McGuire for the 2019 San Diego Watercolor Society International Exhibition. The work also received The Jess and Ann Walker Family Award. 

MARRIOTT HOSTS CULTURAL ART EXPO NOVEMBER 9 IN EL CAJON

Advance tickets now on sale:  earlybird rates through Oct. 31

By Miriam Raftery

October 7, 2019 (El Cajon) –You’re invited to discover local and international artists at the 2019 Cultural Art Expo on Saturday, November 9 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Marriott (141 N. Magnolia Ave.) in El Cajon. Proceeds will benefit the East County Arts Association.

Enjoy live music by the Jazilla Band, a local Latin jazz legend, savor food samples from 12-2 p.m., visit a wine and beer garden, and enjoy artworks including adobe sculptures by Enrieque Avilez form Mexico City, fish carving sculptures by award winner Bob Berry, local artist Grace Schleisher, workshops by local artist Barbara Young and more.

Stop by East County Magazine’s booth at the Cultural Art Expo to meet local authors, artists and our editor!

PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE: THE ART OF CONVERSATION

Play continues through Oct. 12 at Grossmont College’s Stagehouse Theatre 

Review by Kathy Carpenter

October 7, 2019 (El Cajon) - Grossmont College presents Picasso at the Lapin Agile at the Stagehouse Theatre, the opening show for the 2019 - 2020 season. Picasso and the Lapin Agile takes place at a bar in Paris in 1904. The play is the exploration of the creative process, centered around a discussion between two geniuses when they meet at a bar--Pablo Picasso, man of art and Albert Einstein, man of science.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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!

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.

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.

EAST COUNTY BRINGS MANUFACTURING TO MAIN STREET WITH EXPO OCT. 1 IN EL CAJON

San Diego’s largest manufacturing expo is a unique opportunity to inspire students 

 

August 28, 2019 (El Cajon) – The East County Economic Development Council’s (EDC) Manufacturing Expo is right around the corner, and more manufacturers are registering by the day to exhibit their companies and products. On October 1, the fourth annual event will bring manufacturing to Main Street. The Expo will be held in downtown El Cajon at Prescott Promenade from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. and expects to bring in over 500 attendees. 

NEWS HELICOPTER HAS FIERY LANDING IN EL CAJON, INJURING PASSENGER

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine
 
Photo by Jill Barto
 
August 27, 2019 (El Cajon) – A news helicopter rolled over during a landing at Gillespie Field in El Cajon and caught fire this afternoon,  Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) spokesman Ian McGregor told ECM news partner 10 News.

EAST COUNTY CHAMBER HOSTS “TASTE OF PARKWAY PLAZA” MIXER AUG. 22

East County News Service

 

August 21, 2019 (El Cajon) - San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce and Alpine Chamber of Commerce are joining together for an end to summer Business After Hours for a "Taste of Parkway Plaza" on Thursday, August 22 at 5:30 p.m.

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