Descanso

PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: BOBCAT ON THE PROWL

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 15, 2013 (Descanso) – Debbie Ekhaml had just finished a horseback ride near Descanso and was eating lunch shortly after noon recently when a surprise visitor emerged. 

“This beautiful male Bobcat appeared and caught a gopher while we quietly sat under an oak and watched,” she told ECM. “ He hung around for about 50 minutes and tried to get a second one (unsuccessfully).  We were amazed not only to get to watch him, but to see him hunt in the middle of the day!”


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50 RANCHERS GATHER TO "BRAND" DESCANSO JUNCTION REMODEL

 

 

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

October  6, 2013 (Descanso) –The aroma of burning wood filled the air as ranchers pulled their iron brands out of a flaming pit at the Buckel Ranch in Descanso. Old-timers said it was the only time ever that ranchers from all of East County’s historic ranches gathered  in one place. The occasion?  Tammy Cooker, owner of the Descanso Junction Restaurant, invited these seasoned cowhands to burn their brands into tabletops for her popular eatery now undergoing a remodel. 

Cooker has earned the community’s loyalty, having opened her restaurant just before the Cedar Fire, then keeping it open to serve up firefighters, displaced residents and stranded motorists.  Located in a century-old building, her restaurant closes down tomorrow and will hold a grand reopening celebration October 10-12. The revamped interior will celebrate our region’s historic roots.


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SELL-OUT CROWD SAVORED OUR BBQ AND WILD WEST FEST IN DESCANSO

 

By Miriam Raftery; photos by Miriam Raftery, Tom and Nadin Abbott

August 29, 2013 (Descanso) – More than 150 people turned out for East County Magazine’s BBQ and Wild West Fest at the Descanso Town Hall earlier this month.   

In addition to delicious barbecue-grilled tri-tip and chicken served up by Descanso Junction, guests enjoyed lively entertainment by the Pine Creek Posse Band, Western reenactors Gaskill Brothers Gunfighters and the Hole in the Wall Gang, as well as music by Wind Wind Spirit Drum, winners of the national Native American Music Awards.

“We’re delighted at the success and hope to hold a similar event at this historic setting in the future,” said ECM editor and founder Miriam Raftery.  The benefit raised funds to support wildfire reporting to supplement the Viejas Wildfire & Emergency Alerts provided by East County Magazine via e-mail, Twitter, and on KNSJ 89.1 FM radio.


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OUR WILD WEST FEST JUST KEEPS GETTING WILDER! COME JOIN THE FUN SAT. AUG. 10 & BENEFIT WILDFIRE REPORTING

EARLY BIRD RATES EXTENDED THROUGH FRIDAY: $15 INCLUDES WILD WEST SHOW, BBQ DINNER, LIVE MUSIC, DANCING & THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN PRIZES!

Late breaking news: Wind Spirit Drum, winner of the Native American Music Awards, to perform

 

Our "Wild West Fest" this Saturday, August 10 from 4-7 p.m. is shaping up to be our wildest event ever with some amazing prizes. entertainment and great food!

Want to be a cowboy for a day (or cowgirl) and ride the range at a working cattle ranch?  We're giving away this experience---for two--thanks to Campo Creek Ranch. (view video) Or win a stay at the new Viejas Resort, plus steakhouse dinner and outlet center shopping spree?

How about $165 in hay bales? Gift certificates to restaurants, salons, markets, major stores and shops?  Wine baskets? Leather bag from McClintock Saddleworks? Event tickets to "Magic in the Mountains" in Julian? Wine baskets? And much more? All to benefit wildfire reporting in this severe fire season.

Don't miss the fun - we still have tickets left so we've extended the early bird rates through Friday.  We've also added kid rates - $10 for kids ages 4-12. The fun takes place this Saturday, August 10 from 4-7 p.m. at the historic Descanso Town Hall, 24536 Viejas Grade Road in Descanso (Please note corrected address of event).

Western wear is encouraged - channel your inner cowboy (or cowgirl), round up the family and head on out! 


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EARLY BIRD RATES EXTENDED! WESTERN REENACTMENTS TO BRING OLD WEST ALIVE AT WILD WEST FEST AUGUST 10--ALL TO BENEFIT WILDFIRE REPORTING FOR ECM

 

 

Thousands of dollars in fabulous prizes--and a wild west show!

Listen to our audio preview for this exciting event 

July 12, 2013 (Descanso) --Descanso Junction is firing up the BBQ to help us celebrate East County's western heritage at our Wild West Fest and BBQ on Saturday, August 10 from 4-7 p.m. at the historic Descanso Town Hall (24536 Viejas Grade Road, Descanso).  Prince includes BBQ feast, wild west show, dancing, live music, and prizes galore!

Your ticket ($15 at early-bird rates, $20 at the door) includes a delicious tri-tip and chicken barbecue feast,  Wild West show, live music, dancing, and a chance to win thousands of dollars in prizes.The Hole in the Wall Gang and  Gaskill Brothers Gunfighters will provide live western reenactments with a full half-hour wild west show. Author Bryon Harrington will be there with his book, Campo, the Forgotten Gunfight. Plus we'll have a Doc Holliday reenactor. Pine Creek Posse Band will provide live music- so bring your dancing shoes (or your cowboy boots!)

THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN PRIZES: Prizes include a vacation at the Viejas Resort, "cowboy for a day" at Campo Creek Ranch, gift certificates from delicious restaurants, $165 in hay bales, gifts from feed stores, retail shops, salons, leather bag from MCClintock Saddleworks, hay bales, winery gift baskets, bowling, buffets, event tickets and even a free rental at Descanso Town Hall! and more. Descanso Junction will serve up the barbecue feast. KNSJ 89.1 FM radio will be on hand to record YOUR stories, too.


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MOUNTAIN EMPIRE MEN’S CLUB SCHOLARSHIP FUNDRAISER SHOWS REGION WHAT IT TAKES TO GIVE BACK

 

By Ariele Johannson

July 21, 2013 (Descanso) Efforts of the Mountain Empire Men’s Club culminated in a demonstration of the maxim “It takes a village to raise a child.”

An outpouring of volunteer effort, donations, and pitching-in from the mountain community of Descanso made this year’s scholarship fundraiser on June 28 event another success. Tammy Cooker and her crew from Descanso Junction and Catering served up a fabulous barbecue dinner of Jack Daniels tri-tip and chicken, while the Blue Mountain Band performed live music onstage at the historic Descanso Town Hall.


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BACK TO THE OLD WEST: DESCANSO DAYS JULY 13 PACKS PLENTY OF FAMILY FUN

 

 

July 5, 2013 (Descanso)--You’re invited to come “Back to the Old West” at Descanso Days on July 13, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and join in some good old-fashioned backcountry fun at the historic Descanso Town Hall including live music, deep-pit barbecue, a parade, booths, prizes and more.

Guests can also cheer on entries in the Descanso Days Parade – Aussie, the Australian shepherd, on his motorcycle; a variety of unique and antique tractors; Eric Runningpath and Daughter (professional Native American dancers); and several mounted groups including the Grand Ladies of the Old West, the Winchester Widows, the Hole in the Wall Gang, and the Escondido Mounted Patrol. For excitement in the sky, members of the El Cajon Classic Hangar Club will fly over the Parade route in their WWII airplanes.


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PANCAKE BREAKFASTS ANNOUNCED

 

July 8, 2013 (Descanso) -- The public is invited to support a historic building and enjoy all the pancakes you can eat at the Descanso Town Hall’s monthly Pancake Breakfast.  The second Sunday of every month (except July and December), from 8:30-11:30am, the Descanso Town Hall Association hosts a  Pancake Breakfast cooked by local residents. The menu includes pancakes, eggs, sausages, fruit, orange juice, and coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.


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MOUNTAIN EMPIRE MEN'S CLUB HOSTS SCHOLARSHIP FUNDRAISER JUNE 28 AT DESCANSO TOWN HALL

                       

By Ariele Johannson

June 26, 2013 (Descanso) -- Get ready to kick up your heels, because there will be live music and dancing in Descanso on Friday evening, June 28, 2013. Mountain Empire Men’s Club presents their 5th Annual Scholarship Fundraiser at the Descanso Town Hall. The newly designated “historical” town hall is located at 24536 Viejas Blvd. in Descanso. The event is from 5-10 p.m.

Descanso Junction Catering is hosting the event and cooking up a delicious smoked barbecue dinner. This special event also features a silent auction and raffle prizes. All funds collected will go directly to the Scholarship Fund for students in the Mountain Empire School District, of which Descanso is a  part.


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DESCANSO MAN FOUND IN FIRE DIED OF HEART ATTACK

 

May 22, 2013 (Descanso) – The Medical Examiner has determined that Robert Sean Gibbons died of natural causes  from a heart attack related to coronary artery disease.   The body of Gibbons, 46, was found by firefighters who responded to a fire at his trailer, which was fully engulfed in flames.


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DESCANSO JUNCTION: A RESTAURANT WITH COUNTRY FLAIR


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HISTORIC DESCANSO TOWN HALL TO BE HONORED ON APRIL 20

April 18, 2013 (Descanso) – The Descanso Town Hall will be honored on Saturday, April 20 at 10 a.m. and you are invited to join in the festivities.  The historic Town Hall has been selected by E Clampus Vitus, a national primer historical society, to be honored with a monument and plaque.

This historical preservation society, under the leadership of Descanso’s own Warren Geiske, will be unveiling the monument on April 20.

What determines a structure as a historical building includes age, era in which it was built and style. Descanso’s Town Hall was built in 1898, during the time when town halls were being built across the United States.  The purpose for town halls was to build a meeting place where one could get married, have a wake, enjoy a square dance, a pot luck, or even attend church—much the same ways in which Descanso’s town hall continues to be utilized to this day.


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HISTORIC DESCANSO TOWN HALL TO BE HONORED ON APRIL 20

 

The Descanso Town Hall will be honored on Saturday, April 20 at 9 a.m. and you are invited to join in the festivities.  The historic Town Hall has been selected by E Clampus Vitus, a national primer historical society, to be honored with a monument and plaque. 

This historical preservation society, under the leadership of Descanso’s own Warren Geiske, will be unveiling the monument on April 20.


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WANT TO BE ON THE RADIO? KNSJ HOSTS TRAININGS IN DESCANSO STARTING MARCH 28

March 21, 2013 (Descanso) -- Descanso will soon be the home of a new non-commercial community radio station, KNSJ, which will broadcast on 89.1 FM from Monument Peak, Mt. Laguna.  The station aims to begin broadcasting in April, once a transmitter is built.

The station is actively soliciting community members to broadcast their own shows, stories, events listings and items of local information, and to join with and guide the station as it grows into a real 24/7 media outlet by and for the people.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: DESCANSO SNOW

February 26, 2013 (Descanso) -- Julie Salmons shot these photos after this week’s heavy snowfall  blanketed her community in Descanso.  


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SNOW BLANKETS LOCAL MOUNTAINS

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) ---Heavy snowfall has transformed our local mountains into winter wonderlands.  Mount Laguna received 10 inches of snowfall in the past 24 hours, followed by Palomar Mountain with 7 to 8 inches.  Cuyamaca also received significant snowfall, as this image sent in by reader Grace Schlesier shows. Frost and freezing temperatures are expected through Monday in inland valleys.

Other areas dusted in white include Julian (3-6 inches), Ranchita (5 inches), Santa  Ysabel (2 inches) and Pine Valley (2 inches) .  Snow even dipped down to Descanso and Campo, which received less than a half inch each.


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PINE VALLEY SHERIFF'S SUBSTATION OPENS IN TEMPORARY LOCATION

 

January 27, 2013 (Pine Valley)--Beginning Friday, February 1, the Pine Valley Sheriff's Substation can be found at a new location as construction on a new substation gets underway. The temporary address of the substation is 28914 Old Highway 80 Suite 106, Pine Valley, CA 91962 with the same telephone number at (619) 473‐8774.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: WINTER WONDERLAND

 

December 31, 2012 (San Diego's East County) -- A blanket of snow envelops our local mountains and rural areas this New Year's Eve. Melody Ponchot arose early to snap sunrise photos as the morning's first rays illuminate snow dusting trees across her ranch in Boulevard (left, right, and below, right)

Julie Salmons also sent in an image of the Laguna mountains (below, left), viewed from Descanso, wearing a crown of winter white.


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ATTENTION HOLIDAY SHOPPERS: DESCANSO ARTS & CRAFTS FAIR ON NOVEMBER 17

November 13, 2012 (Descanso) – Looking for some hand-crafted, locally made gifts this holiday season? Visit the Descanso Town Hall at 24536 Viejas Grade on November 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the Arts & Crafts Fair. 

Many local artists and craftspeople will be displaying their wares for sale.  Items include paintings, photography, jewelry, decorative gourds, custom embroidery, leather goods and much more.


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HIKER DIES ON TRAIL AFTER FINDING THREE SISTERS FALLS DRY

By Miriam Raftery

September 30, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – A 27-year-old Coronado man collapsed and died yesterday on the return hike from Three Sisters Falls.  According to the San Diego Medical Examiner’s office, the man was hiking with three friends on the trail in the Descanso/Julian area when he collapsed.

“It was a hot day and the falls apparently were dried up,” the Medical Examiner’s website reports.  Temperatures were in the 80s, with an excessive heat warning from the National Weather Service in effect.


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DESCANSO DAYS: PARADE AND FAIR JULY 14

July 12, 2012 (Descanso) – Help fund preservation of Descanso’s historic town hall, built in 1899, by joining in this vintage Americana celebration in East County. Descanso Days fun begins with the “Proud to be an American” parade on Saturday, July 14 at 10 a.m. The parade route starts at Viejas Grade Road in Descanso and ends at the town’s elementary school. 

Later, enjoy live music by Pine Creek Posse Band as well as a bluegrass band and a “tin” band. The fair, held at the Descanso Town Hall, 24536 Viejas Grade Road in Descanso, also features arts and crafts, games, rides for kids, food and beverages.


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2 LIVE COMEDY EVENTS TO RAISE FUNDS FOR KNSJ RADIO JULY 15 AND 22

July 5, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)—Brew Ha HA comedians will host two live comedy events aimed at raising money to help a new radio station get on the air in East County.  KNSJ Radio, FM 89.1, has been approved for an FM license to broadcast from Descanso and also streaming live broadcasts online.  The network will focus on social justice issues while also providing an on-air forum to showcase community news, highlight local musicians’ works, and air local emergency alerts.   


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CAMP OLIVER HELPS KIDS OF ALL INCOME LEVELS ENJOY SUMMER CAMP IN EAST COUNTY’S MOUNTAINS

 

Open House set for July 1

By Sierra Robinson

June 18, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) --Nestled in the mountains of Descanso within Cleveland National Forest, Camp Oliver offers all children an outdoor experience and has been in operation since 1949, when Lawrence and Mary Oliver donated a portion of their ranch along the Sweetwater River to the Sisters of Social Service. 


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PHOTO OF THE WEEK: ONCE UPON A TIME IN EAST COUNTY....

 

March 19, 2012 (Descanso) - Nancy Manning shot this picturesque night time image of snow falling along a country bridge in Descanso, where four inches have blanketed the ground thus far. 

Doesn't it resemble a scene straight out of a fairy tale?


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WEATHER CAUSES PROJECTED 16-HOUR POWER OUTAGE IN MOUNTAIN COMMUNITIES

Fallen trees block roads in Pine Valley and Rancho San Diego

March 19, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – A weather-related problem with a power pole has left 38 utility customers without power in the East Descanso, Green Valley Falls and Cuyamaca areas. 


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LOVE SNOW? VALENTINE’S STORM BLANKETS EAST COUNTY—WITH MORE YET TO COME

Story by Miriam Raftery, photos by Billy Ortiz

February 14, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – A late season storm left a dusting of snow across rural and mountain areas in East County, dipping as low as Descanso along I-8. 


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NEW DISTRICT RANGER REPORTS TO THE DESCANSO RANGER DISTRICT

 
January 29, 2012, San Diego, CA….The Cleveland National Forest welcomes Donn Christiansen as the new District Ranger on the Descanso Ranger District in Alpine, CA. 
Christiansen started his Forest Service career in 1991 as the Counseling Program Manager at the Timber Lake Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center on the Mt. Hood National Forest in Oregon.

 


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MAN'S BODY FOUND INSIDE BURNED HOME IN DESCANSO

 

December 11, 2011 (Descanso) – Firefighters have found a body inside a residence in the 24000 block of Los Terrinitos Road, after dousing a fire that engulfed the structure.  According to the San Diego Medical Examiner’s office, the deceased man is believed to be the 53-year-old resident of the home.


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FATAL ACCIDENT ON I-8 IN DESCANSO

December 5, 2011 (Descanso) -- The Medical Examiner's office has identified Gabrial A. Edwards, 40, as the victim in a fatality accident that occurred late last night in Descanso. Edwards was the driver and sole occupant of a pickup truck which struck the rear of a parked truck tractor semi-trailer on the Japatul Valley Road offramp from westbound I-8. 


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FIND SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE AT THE DESCANSO ARTS AND CRAFTS FAIR NOV. 19

November 11, 2011 (Descanso)  -- Want to start your holiday shopping early?  Check out one the many unique gift items while welcoming in the winter season at the Descanso Arts and Crafts Fair. The event takes place Saturday, November 19 at the Descanso Town Hall, 24536 Viejas Grade, in the mountain town of Descanso from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

 
The event is free and open to the public.
 
  

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