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EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE COLUMNISTS

 

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Animal Tales

Ask an Author

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Bird Talk

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Dan's Tax Tips

Destination East County

Earth Talk ®

East County Eater

From the Chief's Corner

Left Hook

Marketing Matters

Media Watch

Medical Minute

On the Silver Screen

Political Wrangling

Produce Picks

Retirement Concierge

SD Trails

Smokin' Hot Places

Voter’s Watchdog

Vines and Wines

What Works

 

ARCHIVED COLUMNS (Columnists no longer active.)

Scroll down to see the most recent column entries by all columnists, or click your favorite columnist's link above to see all current and past columns.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS

 

East County News Service

January 12, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) --This week’s Destination East County includes a writer’s conference, a British comedy, a Casablanca film showing in Alpine, and Ben Vereen onstage in Poway.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including cabaret nights, a Celtic guitarist, and a Powwow.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: INSTILLING PRIDE FOR CITY AND COUNTRY (PATRIOTS DAY)

 

By Liz Alper

Photo via patch.com

January 10, 2017 (San Diego) - As a New England native, I felt I had an obligation to see this film.  As someone whose mother’s friend was running in the Boston Marathon at the time of the bombings, I had to see this film.  As someone who has family in Massachusetts, I had to see this film.  

I still remember the watching first Boston Bruins game after the bombing.  During the anthems, the entire TD Garden was silent.  Rene Rancourt began to sing and after "were so gallantly streaming," he stopped.  The crowd took it from there.  They carried Boston Strong flags as the American flag danced on the ice and on the junbotron.  I'm from New Hampshire, but I've spent a lot of my life in Boston and I call it my city too and I've never been more proud of my city than I have in that moment.

To this day, four years later, my cousin, who lives in Merrimac, Massachusetts, says she’s afraid to go into Boston.  Not to take her son to a Red Sox game or anything.  Her story and so many others are why I feel it was an excellent idea for Mark Wahlberg (a Boston native) to put this event on film.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JAN. 7-FEB. 11

 

East County News Service

January 4, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes an artists’ reception, a family fun fest, train rides, a walk up Mount Helix, a Lore of the Kumeyaay class, and an international music and arts festival.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including theatrical performances, a writers’ conference, a Hawaiian and Celtic guitarist and song writer, outdoor ice skating, an author’s book signing, and a Native American powwow at Cuyamaca College.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

CHIEF’S CORNER: MUD FLOW/EROSION SAFETY TIPS—STORMS COMING!

 

By Sam DiGiovanna

January 2, 2017 (San Diego) -- The National Weather Service (NWS) is forecasting the possibility of significant storm beginning next Saturday. The NWS is reporting that an Atmospheric River (a narrow corridor of concentrated moisture in the atmosphere) may reach southern California Saturday.

This may produce more rain than we have seen in decades. Start thinking ahead to prepare.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS. DEC. 31-JAN. 29

 

East County News Service

December 27, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes a New Year’s Eve Party, New Year’s day hikes in local state parks, a Joe Rathburn concert, and trivia nights at a winery!

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including a family fun fest, vintage train rides, a classic movie night, a writers’ conference, and a stage production of “What the Butler Saw.”

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

Audio: 

CHIEF’S CORNER: NEW YEAR’S EVE SAFETY TIPS—WHEN THE CLOCK STRIKES MIDNIGHT

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

December 26, 2016 (San Diego) -- New Year’s Eve is a night to have fun and celebrate the coming year, says Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna. However, safety is a must when participating in the festivities.

Following a few safety tips will ensure that you’re safe and sound when the clock strikes midnight, ringing in the New Year!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: DEC. 24-JAN. 29

 

East County News Service

December 20, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes a cribbage tournament, a brass band concert and off-road excursions into the Anza-Borrego desert.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including New Year’s Eve bashes in Alpine and La Mesa, an International Music & Art Festival in Poway, a library concert, ice skating, a hike up Mt. Helix and a performance by Ben Vereen.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: DEC. 17-JAN. 29

 

East County News Service

December 17, 2016 (San Diego’s East County)--This week’s Destination East County includes full moon fishing at Lake Jennings, a concert of many strings, Santa’s reindeer at Grossmont Center, a winter solstice hike up Cowles Mountain, a holiday homes tour and more.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions  including excursions to Split Mountain in the Anza Borrego desert, a New Year’s Eve party at Viejas, and a wintertime walk up Mt. Helix.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY DEC. 8-22

 

 

Listen now:  Hear  this week's Destination East County by clicking the orange audio link.

East County News Service

December 7, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County includes several Christmas theatrical productions, La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village celebration, Victorian teas in Julian, and a holiday wine trail in Ramona.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including Santa’s reindeer at Grossmont Center, a singing and clogging fiddler at Parkway Plaza, full moon fishing at Santee Lakes, a Jingle Concert by the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus at Sycuan, an excursion to Split Mountain in the Anza Borrego Desert, and a winter solstice hike to the top of Cowles Mountain.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

Audio: 

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS DEC. 1-23

 

East County News Service

November 30, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County includes a parade of lights and snow festival, a murder mystery theatre, a pottery studios tour, a holiday concert by the San Diego Festival Chorus and Orchestra, and a Christmas festival at Lions, Tigers and Bears.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including La Mesa’s Holiday in the Village celebration, a holiday wine trail in Ramona, Victorian Christmas teas, and a production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in Julian.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

CHIEF’S CORNER: KEEPING YOU WARM--HEATER AND GAS SAFETY TIPS

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

November 28, 2016 (San Diego) -- This cold front and much needed rain are prompting people to turn on their heaters/furnaces for the first time in a long time. This time of year fire departments respond increasingly to calls of “odor of gas inside.”

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: FIND WHO YOU ARE ON A HAWAIIAN JOURNEY (MOANA)

 

By Liz Alper

November 21, 2016 (San Diego) - I, like most little girls in the 90s, ate, slept and breathed Disney movies.  I was never a princess for Halloween--I was too tomboyish for that--but Belle was my favorite Disney princess and Beauty and the Beast was my favorite Disney movie.  I watched it all the time.  That and Toy Story.  That honor eventually went to 101 Dalmatians (seriously, I was obsessed with that movie.  I played the computer game all the time too).  Tonight I had the privilege of reliving my childhood as an almost 25-year-old.  I attended a pre-screening of the new Disney film Moana, directed by Ron Clements, Don Hall, John Musker and Chris Williams. 

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 19-DEC. 3

 

East County News Service

November 16, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County a Turkey Bowl in Spring Valley, the Casa de Oro Fall Festival, the Mother Goose Parade, ice skating at Viejas, and the annual tree lighting in downtown El Cajon.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Dairy, Jesus Christ Superstar at San Diego State, breakfast with Santa in Santee, a Jingle Paws walk for pets, Lakeside’s Spirit on Maine, holiday concerts, and a Country Christmas in Julian.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

CHIEF’S CORNER: THANKSGIVING COOKING TIPS

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

Now You’re Cooking – With Safety!

November 14, 2016 (San Diego)--Thanks giving is quickly approaching and did you know Thanksgiving Day is the leading day for home cooking fires, with three times as many occurring on Thanksgiving as any other day of the year? “Thanksgiving is a fun, festive holiday, but it’s also very hectic says Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna. “All the entertaining and distractions make it easy to forget about what’s cooking on the stovetop.”

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 11-DEC. 3

 

East County News Service

November 7, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes a Veterans Day commemoration, breakfast with firefighters, Kidz Dance Kompany’s production of 1968, a Wieghorst Museum Holiday Lunch, a wine and painting gathering in La Mesa, and the Spinners live in concert at Sycuan.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including a Turkey Bowl in Spring Valley, Casa de Oro’s first Fall Festival, the Mother Goose Parade, Pomegranate Days at the Oasis Camel Farm in Ramona, Jesus Christ Superstar at San Diego State, breakfast with Santa in Santee, a Jingle Paws walk for pets, Lakeside’s Spirit on Maine, and a Country Christmas in Julian.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: NOV. 4-DEC. 24

November 4, 2016 - This week’s Destination East County include live music at La Mesa’s newest wine tasting room, a fall Planstravaganza, the Ramona Art and Wine Festival, and the opening of trout fishing season in Santee.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including a holiday open house at Summers Past Farms, a  Paint-a-Holic program in La Mesa,  a Veterans Day commemoration in El Cajon, the Casa de Oro Fall Festival,  the Mother Goose Parade, holiday concerts at Parkway Plaza and more.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 29-NOV. 20

 

East County News Service

October 26, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County includes the college area Boo! Parade and a HallowScream extravaganza.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including La Mesa’s Historical Home Tour, a fall plantstravaganza, the Ramona Art & Wine Festival, the Trout Opener at Santee Lakes, a Veterans Day commemoration in El Cajon, the Wieghorst Museum’s holiday lunch and the Mother Goose parade celebrates its 70th year of ushering in the holiday season in East County.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

PRODUCE PICKS: APPLES AND FALL SEASON CHOICES

 

Apple recipes included

By Greg Dunne

October 26, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – Let’s compare apples to apples. The change of the season from summer fruits, to fall and winter apples is under way. The start of the new crop apples begins the middle of October and will run through early May. The variety of apples we see in the markets are increasing all the time. Some of the relatively new varieties include Opal Apples, Sweetie Apples, Envy Apples, Ambrosia Apples, Ginger Gold Apples, Autumn Glory Apples, and Sweet Tango Apples.

EARTHTALK®: HOW TO GREEN UP YOUR HALLOWEEN

 

From the Editors of E - The Environmental Magazine

Caption: Green Halloween encourages parents to organize costume swaps & give out healthy snacks or treasures instead of candy this year at Halloween. Credit: Cascadian Farms, FlickrCC.

Dear EarthTalk: Any tips for how to green up my Halloween this year? -- Jason Falcone, Bern,NC

 

October 22, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - Halloween may be fun, but...this most ghoulish of holidays is also cause for lots of waste, given the preponderance of one-time use costumes that end up in a box or in the trash come November 1. And sustainability proponents also decry Halloween for promoting unhealthy eating habits, as obesity and diabetes rates among American kids continue to skyrocket. So what’s a green Halloween reveler to do?

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS

 

East County News Service

October 19,2016 (San Diego's East County)--This week’s Destination East County includes Borrego Days, a Toast to East County,  a production of Annie Jr.,Lakeside Heritage Day, Haunt Fest on Main, haunted trails and more.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including Trunk or Treat, Stoney’s Boo Bash,  the Boo Parade, Halloscream, the La Mesa Historical Homes Tour,  the Art and Wine Fest in Ramona, a  Fall Plantstravaganza, and the Trout Opener at Santee Lakes.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

Audio: 

CHIEF’S CORNER: A DEDICATION AND REMINDER THAT SANTA ANA WINDS ARE COMING!

 

 

Dedicated to the Men of Engine Company 57

“I can’t believe it’s been 10 years. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was home in Orange County leaving for work in Los Angeles. I could see the large plume of smoke to the east. In a matter of moments it intensified. The plumb expanded and rose quickly into the atmosphere. I knew something went bad. I didn’t think it was this bad… Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna”

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

October 17, 2016 (San Diego) -- October 26th 2006, 1:11 a.m. Santa Ana winds stirred across the southland.

A Red Flag warning had been identified and was in effect. A high probability for large fire growth was in effect as conditions were high temperatures, low humidity, and Santa Ana winds.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 15-31

 

East County News Service

October 11, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes an air show, a haunted trail, howl-o-ween hounds, fair-trade shopping, a barbecue cook-off, and a pumpkin patch with activities galore.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including Haunt Fest on Main, Stoney’s Boo Bash, and the College Area Boo Parade.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

CHIFE’S CORNER: FIRE PREVENTION WEEK

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

October 11, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- Fire Prevention Week was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, the tragic 1871 conflagration that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres. The fire began on October 8, but continued into and did most of its damage on October 9, 1871.

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 5-31

 

East County News Service

October 4, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) --This week’s Destination East County includes the 60th annual melodrama in Julian, the German-American Club Oktoberfest and a Grammy award-winning country music star in El Cajon.

Plus, we’ll tell you about coming attractions including a barbecue competition in Spring Valley, a fair trade shopping event in La Mesa, a Howl-o-ween pet adoption event at Grossmont Center and a spooky array of Halloween events from the College Area Boo Parade to Night of the Jack-o-lanterns in Alpine, Hauntfest on Main in El Cajon, and a Halloscream Extravaganza in Spring Valley.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

CHIEF’S CORNER: SAVING SOME WINERIES—THANK YOU, FIREFIGHTERS!

 

Wine Awareness Month

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna October 1,  2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- To date, some of this year’s most destructive fires were dangerously close to the Napa, Paso and Santa Barbara Wine Regions. Our hearts go out to the victims of these dangerous wildfires. Ask any Firefighter - they take any loss personally. Sometimes were just outnumbered, many times mother nature and the fires fury is too much. Especially with these drought conditions.

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