Viejas

LOCAL TRIBES SEND CARAVANS TO AID STANDING ROCK SIOUX OPPOSED TO DAKOTA PIPELINE

Videos on social media show heavily armed police  arresting “water protectors” today; San Diego rally planned Oct. 30

Update Oct. 7, 2016: Hear our interview on KNSJ Radio with Bobby Wallace by clicking the audio link

By Miriam Raftery

September 28,2016 (San Diego)—“We must, we will, bring more supplies. Our number one goal is to help the people,”  Barona tribal member Bobby Wallace told East County Magazine.

Winter will soon bring bitter cold to the Standing Rock Sioux encampment in Cannnonball,North Dakota, where “hundreds of tribes” have sent thousands of people camp out and take a stand against the Dakota access oil pipeline.  Wallace has been organizing relief supplies gathered by local tribes to support  the effort.

Speaking last week at an Activist San Diego meeting in San Diego,  Wallace told of the reactions when he arrived with the first caravan of supplies for the three camps.”Men, people, had tears in their eyes.  People hugged us…just knowing people far away cared.”

Audio: 

COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION RELEASES EMF SURVEY RESULTS FOR ALPINE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

 

Viejas announces funding for EMF measurements at school

By Miriam Raftery

February 29, 2016 (Alpine) -- The San Diego County Office of Education on Friday released a draft Survey and Exposure Assessment  or electrmagnetic fields (EMF) for Alpine Elementary School.  The study concludes that  the Sunrise Powerlink transmisison line buried on Alpine Blvd.does not pose a significant safety or health risk to the school site." The study further finds that readings in and around buildings at Alpine Elementary "while not representative of a pristine EMF environment, were within a normal range of exposures one could expect in a society with electric power."

The County study examines 94 measurements taken inside and outside the school and  cites several reasons for concluding the site is safe.

VIEJAS TOY DRIVE RUNS THROUGH NOV. 30

Party Dec. 9 for all toy donors

November 25, 2015 (Alpine)—For every toy donated to this year’s toy drive, Viejas Casino & Resort will match it one-for-one.  “We have a very ambitious goal and we need your support to achieve success,” a press release states.

Since the Toy Drive in partnership with The Salvation Army in 2010, Viejas has donated over 30,000 toys, giving back to our community and helping to make the holiday season brighter for children in need.

READER'S EDITORIAL: ROY COOK FAREWELL

 

By Grey Feathers

March 12th, 2015 (Viejas) - A huge throng of people from all over came to say goodbye to Roy Cook in the gym at the heart of the Viejas Reservation on Saturday.  Roy died suddenly and we are overwhelmed with a sense of loss.  It was comforting to hear from so many friends how they were touched by his magic.  The prayers, the songs, the Honor Guard, the Soaring Eagles, the drums building up to heaven and the wailing releasing our anguish.  We cried in each other's arms.

The first day I met Roy Cook was at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Jamul Casino in 2005.  I was proud and happy for the Jamul Indian Village and perplexed by the angry faces marching with signs on the street.  Roy sensed the vicious opposition would eventually delay the project and he was right.  He told me some of the history of the Jamul Band.  He said they were the poorest of the poor.  Their little village had dirt roads, their homes had dirt floors.

That encounter changed my life because Roy spoke with such certainty and compassion I began reading everything he wrote.  The words lifted off the pages like they were written in my heart.  Being indigenous became more than a card I carried in my wallet.

FEDERAL AGENCY POSITIONS FIREFIGHTING HELICOPTERS AT VIEJAS AS SANTA ANA WINDS, DROUGHT INCREASE FIRE RISK

 

 

View video:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B3c8rQTaZqUCa3pHNUZJaUdNQkk/view

Source: Viejas

October 5, 2014 (Alpine)--The Bureau of Indian Affairs (B.I.A) has moved two of its firefighting helicopters from northern California to the Viejas Indian Reservation in San Diego County to position them for quick response as the wildfire threat increases across Southern California.

The continued drought conditions, extreme heat and Santa Ana winds forecast over the weekend have made San Diego County, and Southern California, ripe for wildfires and have prompted multiple agencies to be on high alert.

BEST HAPPY HOURS IN EAST COUNTY!

 

 

 

 

Part 1 in a series

By the very happy East County Eaters at East County Magazine

Week 1: Terra American Bistro (San Diego/La Mesa area) and Viejas Resort & Casino (Alpine)

September 4, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)—Our intrepid team of East County Eaters have been on the road in search of the best Happy Hours across our inland region. (It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it!) Each week, we’ll be featuring two locales offering diverse experiences. Whether your tastes run to sushi bars or cowboy bars, wine bistros or craft brew pubs, urban eateries or mountain taverns, you’ll find plenty to whet your appetite!

To kick off our series, we start by featuring two of our favorites:  Terra American Bistro, a bistro and bar that prides itself on farm-to-table fresh cuisine--right down to the fresh-squeeze passionfruits in our cocktails and the refreshingly tasty and affordable appetizers, plus we tried our luck at Viejas Casino and Resort -- a four-star vacation destination hotel with some great specials sure to make you happy. Cheers!

HAVE A BLAST: VIEJAS AIMS TO SET WORLD RECORD FOR FIREWORKS SEPT. 12

 

August 30, 2014 (Alpine) – Viejas Casino & Resort will attempt to launch the world’s longest chain of fireworks—more than 10,000 – to celebrates its 23rd anniversary on Friday, September 12th at 8 p.m. You’re invited to the festivities near the Viejas Hotel pool to witness the sky come alive with fireworks during this Guinness Book of World Records setting attempt.

FIREFIGHTERS’ CHILI COOK-OFF: JUNE 26 IN ALPINE

 

June 7, 2014 (Alpine) – Firefighters from the Alpine, Viejas and Sycuan Fire Departments will be cooking up their hottest dishes for a chili-tasting challenge during the fourth annual Firehouse Cook-Off. 

Who’s got the tastiest chili in town? You be the judge on Thursday, June 26 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Alpine Library, 2130 Arnold Way in Alpine.

THE THRILL IS BACK: MOVIES IN THE PARK AT VIEJAS

 

 

May 29,2014 (Alpine)- Movies in the park return at the Viejas Outlet Center in Alpine, where you can enjoy watching the latest action thrillers and other blockbuster films while lounging under the stars in a serene park setting. 

Admission is  $5, which includes a regular-size popcorn, plus a 12oz. soda and preferred seating. Children 12 and under are free but must be accompanied by an adult. Movies start at 8 p.m. Movies run from late May through August 22.

To download and print the 2014 schedule, please click HERE or click "read more" and scroll down. 

WAS IT FRAUD? EXPERTS RAISE SERIOUS QUESTIONS AFTER LOW FIRST-YEAR ENERGY PRODUCTION AT OCOTILLO WIND PROJECT

 

Elected officials suppressed key report, failed to halt project or recover taxpayer dollars

“It was heartbreaking to see this project desecrate such a historically and culturally significant landscape, and it’s even worse when you find out that it was built on false claims by the developer, and with the assistance of the BLM. "-- Anthony Pico, Chairman, Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians

An East County Magazine special investigation

By Miriam Raftery

April 30, 2014 (Ocotillo) – An international wind energy expert has concluded that Pattern Energy appears to have defrauded the federal government in order to obtain lucrative tax subsidies for a wind energy development in southern California that has failed to live up to the developer’s claims.

“I believe we have a clear case for the False Claims Act,” Nicolas Boccard told East County Magazine, after reviewing full first-year wind production data for the Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility on U..S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) public land.  The project produced only about half of the energy that Pattern claimed it would produce—far below levels deemed viable for a wind project, a second expert confirms. 

These dismal results are no surprise to Boccard, who predicted in a report written before construction of the project was  completed that Ocotillo lacks sufficient wind speeds to sustain a viable wind energy project.

So were Pattern's lofty wind speed claims nothing more than spin?

EAST COUNTY COMMUNITY LEADERS TURN OUT TO HONOR BRADYS AT BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS ANNUAL CHILDRENS’ BALL

 

 

 

Photo, left:  Guests at Viejas Band of the Kumeyaay Indians table at the Children's Ball

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

April 2004 (San Diego)--More than 400 people from throughout San Diego and East County attended the 48th annual Children’s Ball.  Held at the U.S. Grant Hotel in downtown San Diego, this elegant gathering benefitted the Boys and Girls Clubs of East County. 

 

This year, the event honored Mary Alice and Ron Brady (photo, right), founders of the Brady Companies which recently donated $3 million to the Boys and Girls Clubs of East County. A new  Brady Family Clubhouse on the campus of La Mesa Middle School will be named in their honor.  The Boys and Girls Clubs of East County serve over 3,000 children every year.

BINGO HALL OPENS AT VIEJAS OUTLETS IN ALPINE

 

Believed to be the first bingo hall located in a shopping center in California

 

April 5, 2014 (Alpine)--What is believed to be California’s first-ever bingo hall to be located in a shopping center opened to the public today at Viejas Outlets, following a sneak preview and ribbon cutting yesterday. To celebrate the opening of the new Viejas Bingo at Viejas Outlets, there will be more than $45,000 awarded in April and a chance to win one of two new FIAT 500s.

CHILDREN’S BALL MARCH 29 TO BENEFIT BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF EAST COUNTY

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 19, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)—The elegant U.S. Grant Hotel will be the site of the 48th annual Children’s Ball on March 29 at 6 p.m. This event benefits more than 3,000 children served each year by Boys & Girls Clubs of East County—and you’re invited.

Guests will enjoy the ambiance of the cocktail lounge complete with combo, designer drinks, silent auction, three grand drawing prizes and the ever famous seafood buffet.  In addition admission includes dinner, a live auction, dancing and an opportunity to meet some very special Club members. 

This special event honors Ron & Mary Alice Brady for their commitment to build The Brady Family Clubhouse & Teen Center and improving the lives of the children in La Mesa. “It’s better to build kids than try to mend adults” is not only Mr. Brady’s mantra, but has inspired the theme of this year’s Children’s Ball; Building a Better Future.

ALPINE MOUNTAIN EMPIRE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE SEEKS NOMINATIONS FOR LEADERSHIP AND PUBLIC SERVICE AWARDS

 

 

 

January 28, 2014 (Alpine)—February 5 is the deadline to submit nominations for the 2014 Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce Leadership & Public Service Award. You can phone, e-mail, fax, go online or mail the names of the Alpine and Mountain Empire people, organizations or businesses you think deserve to be recognized for outstanding leadership or public service last year. Hosted by the Chamber, the awards will be presented on Thursday, Feb. 13, at the Viejas DreamCatcher Lounge in Alpine.

VIEJAS CASINO & RESORT GIVES OVER 12,000 TOYS TO LOCAL SALVATION ARMY

 Link to video from Toy Drive “Big Reveal”: http://youtu.be/Wt6i9YqPrHM

December 12, 2013 (Alpine) – When the curtain went up on stage at the DreamCatcher Lounge last night at Viejas Casino and Resort, it revealed 12,017 toys to benefit local children this holiday season. 

Representatives of Viejas Tribal Council also presented a $15,000 check to  East County Salvation Army Captain Terry Masango on behalf of the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians, along with the largest donation of toys ever received by the local Salvation Army chapter.

"THE BIG REVEAL" DEC. 11 AT VIEJAS TO UNVEIL HOLIDAY TOYS

 

December 7, 2013 (Alpine) – On December 11th at 6 p.m., the curtain will rise at the Viejas Dreamcatchers Lounge to reveal results of this year’s Viejas Holiday Toy Drive. The goal is to bring in donations of 10,000 toys to brighten the holidays for East County families in need.

The Viejas band of the Kumeyaay Indians joins in the 39th annual East County Toy Drive to support Stoney’s Kids and Salvation Army of East County. 

HOLIDAY SEASON KICKS OFF WITH TREE LIGHTING AND FREE ICE SKATING PERFORMANCE AT VIEJAS OUTLETS DEC. 7

 

December 6, 2013 (Alpine) – Viejas Outlets officially kicks off the holiday season this weekend with the lighting of one of Southern California’s largest trees and a free ice skating performance by regional, national and international ice skating competitors.

A massive 60-foot holiday tree will be illuminated at 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 7 at the Viejas Outlets ice rink followed by free ice skating performances by some of the world’s best ice skaters. The ice rink will be open to the public immediately before and after the event, with special pricing for kids, seniors and military.

VIEJAS OPENS PARKING GARAGE AND SKYWALK, PRIVATE DINING ROOM, AND NEW BAR

 

November 27, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Viejas Casino & Resort officially opened their new 4-story parking structure on Friday, with a Native American Blessing and traditional Birdsongs.

After the ribbon was cut and the parking structure opened to the public, KUSI’s David Davis was among those who drove a brand new Porsche into the parking structure.

VIEJAS ICE RINK OPENS FOR HOLIDAY SEASONS

 

November 13, 2013 (Alpine) – A little known secret in East County is that each winter, you can enjoy outdoor ice skating at a rink larger than the famed Rockefeller Center rink in New York.   Viejas Outlet Center’s rink is also the largest in Southern California.  You can enjoy shopping, holiday décor and entertainment, sip hot cocoa or order off a rink-side menu.

The rink is now open through the holiday season. If you bring a new, unwrapped toy worth $5 or more by December 4, you can also get a $3 discount on skating prices (see rates below).

VIEJAS LAUNCHES HOLIDAY TOY DRIVE

 

October 24, 2013 (Alpine) -- Viejas Casino & Resort has launched its annual Holiday Toy Drive to support the local Salvation Army. With the help of Viejas Team Members and guests, the goal is to provide 10,000 toys to deserving families in San Diego and Imperial Counties. That’s up from a target of 5,000 toys last year.

TRIPLE WIN: VIEJAS BREAKS THREE WORLD RECORDS

September 19,2013 (Alpine)—Friday the 13th proved lucky at Viejas Casino & Resort, where three  Guinness world records were set on September 13 th in celebration of the casino’s 22nd anniversary.

“It’s a challenge, a difficult,” Guinness Book of World Records adjudicator Philip Roberts said after Viejas employees and guests teamed up to open 639 bottles of wine simultaneously.  This broke the old record set in Las Vegas of 474. 

Those gathered went to set another world record for most people giving high fives in one place:  684.  The former record (405) was held by the United Arab Emirates, Roberts announced as the crowd cheered.

VIEJAS DOUBLES DOWN, TRIES TO SET 2 WORLD RECORDS ON SEPT. 13

 

September 5, 2013 (Alpine) – To celebrate its 22nd anniversary, Viejas Casino and Resort is aiming to break two Guiness World Records  on September 13—playing blackjack with the world’s largest deck of cards and later, opening the most bottles of wine at one time.

RECYCLE YOUR ELECTRONICS ITEMS FREE JULY 27 IN ALPINE TO BENEFIT U.N.I.T.Y.

 

On July 27, the United Indian Tribal Youth Council (U.N.I.T.Y.)  is hosting an electronics recycling event in Alpine. You can bring your old computers, laptops, TVs, monitors or anything else electronic to recycle free of charge. That includes everything that plugs in or that is battery operated.

The event takes place at the Viejas Recreation Center, 1B Viejas Grade Road in Alpine on Saturday, July 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

VIEJAS ANNOUNCES FULL WEEKEND OF INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATIONS JULY 4-7

 

July 3, 2013 (Alpine) – Viejas is planning four full days and nights of activities, all free, to celebration Independence Day this weekend. Activities include fireworks on the 4th, as well as music, outdoor movies, and the new ICONS show in the Viejas Outlets Show Court throughout the weekend. For a schedule of events, scroll down.

NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE COMMISSION HEARING ON OCOTILLO ISSUES SET FOR APRIL 22 IN SAN DIEGO

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 12, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – The California Native American Heritage (CNAH) Commission will hold a hearing in San Diego on Monday, April 22 at 11 a.m. The hearing will focus on results of an NAHC investigation into local tribes' allegations that the federal government failed to protect Native American cultural resources at the Ocotillo Express Wind Facility site.

The hearing will be in the State of California Building, 1350 Front Street, San Diego 92101 (between A and Ash Streets).  

A hearing previously set for February was cancelled without explanation. The CNAH had issued a  draft report in support of claims by the Viejas Band of the Kumeyaay Indians and Quechan Indian Nation that the Bureau of Land Management failed in its duty to protect cultural resources, including human remains and sacred sites, at the Ocotillo project.  The draft staff report detailed a disturbing pattern by the BLM, Pattern Energy and a project archaeology consultant of ignoring tribal concerns and failing in its duty to protect cultural resources. 

DINNER SHOW WITH THE LEGENDS APRIL 13 TO BENEFIT MOTHER GOOSE PARADE

 

April 12, 2013 (Alpine) --The public , is invited to a dinner and performance by The Legends to benefit the Mother Goose Parade.  The event will be held in the Viejas Dreamcatcher Lounge on Saturday, April 13 from 4-7 p.m.  The show costs $30 per person, or two for $50.

Viejas Dreamcatcher Lounge is located at the Viejas Casino, 5000 Willows Road in Alpine.  This show is for ages 21 and up.  For tickets, call (619)444-5774.

VIEJAS CELEBRATES GRAND OPENING OF “WORLD CLASS RESORT” HOTEL

 

 

Story and photos by Miriam Raftery, video by Paul Kruze

March 22, 2013 (Alpine) – “This truly is a game changer for East County,” said Joe Terzi, Chief Executive Officer of the San Diego Tourism Authority, at a VIP grand opening last night of the $36 million, five-story hotel at Viejas Casino & Resort in Alpine.  He hailed the new resort as a “great new addition to the San Diego region” that will help East County benefit from tourism that drives San Diego’s economy.

Dignitaries and community leaders from across our region turned out for last night’s occasion.  A second opening for the public, including a free world premier performance of the Cirque-style show “Rise”, will be held on Saturday night, March 23 along with fireworks to celebrate East County’s landmark new  addition.

View our exclusive video, see our photo gallery and read details of this landmark occasion below.

 

VIEJAS CASINO HOTEL HOSTS GRAND OPENING PARTY AND DEBUT OF CIRQUE SHOW "RISE" ON MARCH 23



March 17, 2013 (Alpine)--You're invited to the Viejas Casino Hotel Grand Opening  on March 23 at 8 p.m.  Join the grand opening weekend VIP party and the world premiere of "Rise." A 30-minute cirque experience specially commissioned for the occasion, this breathtaking exhibition of artistry and acrobatics could only be followed by one thing-fireworks.

Stick around after the show and take in an incredible display that will literally ring in Viejas Hotel's Grand Opening with a bang.

CA NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE COMMISSION ISSUES REPORT BACKING VIEJAS AND QUECHAN CLAIMS OF OCOTOILLO WIND SITE HARM TO SACRED SITES

 

Commission urges CA Attorney General to file suit if mitigation requests not met

Update February 12, 2013: A hearing set for February 15 in San Diego has been postponed.

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2013 (Ocotillo ) – The California Native American Heritage Commission (CNAH) has issued a report in support of the Viejas Band of the Kumeyaay Indians and the Quechan Indian Nation claims that the Bureau of Land Management failed in its duty to protect cultural resources including human remains and sacred sites at the Ocotillo Express Wind Facility.  The draf staff report details a disturbing pattern by the BLM, Pattern Energy and a project archaeology consultant of ignoring tribal concerns and failing in its duty to protect cultural resources.

The tribes petitioned the NAHC to investigate and conduct a public hearing to consider tribal requests to declare the entire 12,500 acre site a ‘sanctified cemetery’.  Tribes also seek to have the project halted to assess damage and want agencies to consult with tribes to agree on mitigation measures to prevent further harm to a broader region. The case has broad national significance, with hundreds of millions of acres of public lands slated for renewable energy projects.

The NAHC has cancelled a Public Hearing that had been scheduled at the State of California Building on Front Street in Downtown San Diego for February 15, offering no explanation for the indefinite postponement.

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