THIS WEEK IN EAST COUNTY: DESERT IN BLOOM & MUCH MORE

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March 19, 2009 (San Diego's East County)--What's up this weekend and next week? Plenty! Flowers are still in bloom in portions of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. Stop by the visitor center for info on best viewing areas to view wildflowers; also ask for tips on where to spot bighorn sheep, including young lambs. There's lots more coming up in East County, including a vineyards party, an NCAA basketball championship, museum showings, a wind farm tour, dance and tumbling recital, a homebuyers fair, an open house for fire survivors, guided nature walks, a national healthcare presentation, and more.

Friday, the Harris Fire Recovery Team hosts an open house for fire survivors from 10 to 3 p.m. In the evening, Orfila Vineyards has brought back its popular ‘80s night. Saturday, sports fans won't want to miss watching SDSU's Aztecs compete in the NCAA women's basketball championships at Cox Arena (soon to be renamed Viejas Arena). Other choices Saturday include a League of Women Voters and Physicians for a National Healthcare Program presentation in Lemon Grove, a renewable energy seminar and wind farm tour in Campo, and a Sustainable Julian program at the Julian library. Or opt for a Saturday homebuyers fair in El Cajon, plus a book signing and historical presentation at Heritage of the Americas Museum by James E. Thomas, author of Corps of Discovery: Lewis and Clark. Guided nature walks are offered at Mission Trails Regional Park on Sunday morning, with a dance and tumbling recital Sunday afternoon in El Cajon. Next week, an SDG&E meeting on Powerlink in Jacumba will be held on Wednesday evening. Earlier in the day, Grossmont College hosts a program offering sleep advice to seniors. Thursday, you can dine out at Grossmont College for a modest fee and sample fare served up by culinary students, or visit the grand opening of O'Dunn Fine Art Gallery in La Mesa. If you're looking for networking opportunities, the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce is also hosting a mixer at Viejas this week. There's also still time to reserve space for other upcoming March events to benefit East County nonprofits, including Las Hermanas Casino Night fundraiser aboard a riverboat and Heartland Lions fashion show next weekend. For details on these and other events, visit our calendar at http://www.calendarwiz.com/calendars/calendar.php?crd=eastcountymagazine.... If you have an event to add, contact calendar@eastcountymagazine.org.