By Miriam Raftery
July 2, 2014 (Mt. Helix) – It was a very important date for guests at the Mad Hatter wine tasting party hosted by vintner Stephanie Young and Laurie Delaney at the Manor Vineyard on Mt. Helix.
Prizes were awarded for best costumes as guests mixed, mingled, munched appetizers and savored vintages brought by guests. Vineyard consultant Greg Maness poured wines and spoke about our region’s fast-growing wine industry at the May 18 event.
April 14, 2014 (Mt. Helix) -- On Saturday, May 17, from 10:30 am to 11:30 am, part two of Mt. Helix Park’s Nature/Sustainable Living lecture series will be held in the ampitheater atop Mt. Helix.This free, one-hour lecture on landscaping with California native plants will feature guest speaker, Greg Rubin, President of California’s Own Native Landscape Design, Inc. and co-author of "The California Native Landscape: The Homeowner's Guide to Restoring Its Beauty and Balance.”
February 10, 2014 (Rancho San Diego)--A new Sheriff’s Station opened Monday on Campo Road in Rancho San Diego, near the intersection of Highways 54 and 94.
READER'S EDITORIAL: REFLECTIONS ON THE MEANING OF CHRISTIANITY AND RELIGIOUS SYMBOLS - A REACTION TO THE MT. SOLEDAD CROSS CONTROVERSY
“…devote your time, energy, passion, and money to making sure that everyone has decent shelter, food, education, and medical care. That will be the true monument to Christianity.” – Joel A. Harrison
By Joel A. Harrison
January 8, 2014 (San Diego) -- In a 20-year saga that never ends, on December 12 U.S. District Judge Larry Burns ruled that the cross atop Mount Soledad was unconstitutional. Burns ordered the cross removed within 90 days; but then stayed that order until all appeals have been exhausted. And on December 19 an article in the San Diego U-TA reported an appeal is underway.
A similar controversy in East County several years ago was resolved when a cross atop Mt. Helix was transferred from public ownership to a private group of area homeowners. (Privatization is not an appropriate option for Soledad, since the site is a U.S. military memorial.) Instead of rehashing the Constitutional pros and cons, I would like to reflect a moment on my view of the meaning of Christianity—and the most appropriate monuments to faith and humanity.
November 23, 2013 (Mt. Helix)--Sounds of the season will emanate from the Mt. Helix Park Amphitheatre on Sunday, December 15 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. during the annual Sing-along Christmas Caroling Party, a free family event.
Gina Seashore, known locally as That Music Lady, will be leading the caroling supported by a group of musicians. Free, hot coffee and cocoa will be available and SPRITES (a local mother-daughter philanthropic group) will provide free, baked goods. Santa will be visiting from the North Pole to hear the wishes of the younger carolers. Donations of canned goods will be accepted for distribution through the Journey Church food pantry.
Mother misled investigators about location of drownings, authorities say
May 13, 2013 (Mt. Helix) --A one-year-old girl is dead and her two-year-old brother have died after their mother awoke this morning and found both children unconscious in a swimming pool. The family had been staying at the residence on Mt. Helix at 10011 Sunset Avenue in unincorporated La Mesa.
The mother pulled the children from the pool with help from her friend and drove to La Mesa Fire Station #13 for assistance. “After arrival at the fire station, the friend ran away and has not been located,” Lt Gle,n Giannantonio with the San Diego Sheriff’s Homicide Detail reported.
Honors to be presented to “pioneering women” in local wine industry at Maness Vineyards’ event
May 27, 2013 (Mt. Helix) – East County Magazine Editor Miriam Raftery is among three honorees slated to receive an “Award of Merit” on June 15 from 12 to 4 p.m. at the 5th annual Maness Vineyards; Food & Wine Mixer. This year’s event will be held at Stephanie Young’s Manor Vineyard on Mt. Helix. Other honorees are Supervisor Dianne Jacob and Teri Kerns, Executive Editor of the Ramona Valley Wine Region Magazine.
Guests are invited to bring two bottles of wine to share and enjoy a barbecue luncheon and wine-tasting. An opportunity drawing will also be held, with proceeds benefitting St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center for developmentally disabled adults.
By Miriam Raftery
Photos courtesy ECM news partner 10 News and Heartland Fire
April 26, 2013 (La Mesa)—Jackson Pavlicek of La Mesa is under arrest for reckless burning of property. According to La Mesa Police, Pavlicek extinguished a cigarette in the backyard of a home in the 9600 block Dillon Drive on the Grossmont Knoll, igniting dry brush. The fire quickly spread to the house and also damaged the roof of a neighboring home, as well as trees and fences.
Heartland Fire & Rescue crews from La Mesa, Lemon Grove and El Cajon, as well as units from Santee, San Diego and Cal Fire, had the fire fully contained in about one hour. The blaze sent smoke billowing forth that was visible from State Route 125.
April 12, 2013 (Mt. Helix) – The Fourth Annual East County Earth Day, a free, family-fun event, will be held at Mt. Helix Park and Amphitheater on April 14 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Co-hosted by The Jarrett Meeker and Mt. Helix Park Foundations, East County Earth Day will feature eco-friendly vendors, live music, speakers, an art contest, wildlife presentations, an Earth Day scavenger hunt and games for children.
Vendors include Birch Aquarium, The California Wolf Center and I Love A Clean San Diego with interactive environmental and wildlife presentations.
March 30, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- For nearly a century, Easter sunrise service has been an annual tradition atop Mt. Helix.
This year's service will be held at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday, March 31 and will be hosted by Christ Luthern Church of La Mesa. Free shuttle service will be provided starting at 5:30 a.m. from three locations: the Brigantine Restaurant on Fuerte, the San Miguel Fire Station on Vivera, and the Grossmont Center parking lot near Walmart.
November 25, 2012 (La Mesa) – Sounds of the season will emanate from the Mt. Helix Park Amphitheatre on December 16 from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. during the annual Sing-along Christmas Caroling event. Gina Seashore, known locally as That Music Lady, will be leading the caroling with her regular group of musicians.
November 1, 2011 (Mt. Helix) --As part of a larger cast iron pipeline replacement project, Helix Water District crews will replace two 60-year-old valves at Mt. Helix Drive and Vivera Drive and install a new valve at Mt. Helix Drive and Alto Drive on Thursday, November 17.
Much of Mt. Helix is served by a single pipeline. As a result, construction activity will create a 10-hour water shutdown between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 242 customers on 20 streets in the vicinity.
November 13, 2011 (San Diego County) -- The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Rancho San Diego Station on Friday, November 18t at 10:00 a.m. Sheriff Bill Gore, Supervisor Dianne Jacob, community leaders and local law enforcement agencies in the East County will be in attendance.
August 26, 2011 (Mt. Helix)--East County’s most recognizable landmark, the cross memorial and amphitheater atop Mt. Helix, will be the site of the Fourth Annual heART of Mt. Helix. The event will be held on August 27 from 5:30 to 10 p.m. and will feature vignettes by local performing and visual artists.
Proposal that could halt Alpine high school construction will also be heard by board
July 11, 2011 (El Cajon) – The Boundary Committee for the Grossmont Union High School District has adopted recommendations for shifting high school boundaries throughout the distirct. The recommendations will be presented Thursday, to the GUHSD Boardat 6 p.m. in the East County Regional Education Center, 924 East Main Street in El Cajon.
Lines will be changing across East County. For example, on Mt. Helix many students now in the Grossmont High School district are proposed to shift to Monte Vista, a school with a far poorer academic record, to ease overcrowding at Grossmont. In Blossom Valley, proposed new lines would similarly shift some students to a poorer performing school, in Lakeside sparking protests from parents.
May 20, 2011 (Mt. Helix) – The East County Youth Symphony will present a free concert at the Mt. Helix Park ampitheater on Sunday, May 22 at 4 p.m. An 85 piece orchestra will play a trumpet concerto followed by pops music.
April 18, 2011 (San Diego's East County) -- While beach denizens are contending with coastal fog, the sun is shining out here in East County--where it's just another day in paradise this time of year.
We hope you'll enjoy our local photographers' images of springtime in East County!
April 15, 2011 (Mt. Helix) -- Don't want to fight the crowds at Earth Day in Balboa Park? Now there's a local alternative. Earth Day is coming to East San Diego County on Sunday, May 1 from 11 am – 3 pm.
This free family-fun event will be held in the Mt. Helix Amphitheater, 4901 Mt. Helix Drive in La Mesa. Co-sponsored by the Jarrett Meeker Foundation and Mt. Helix Park in partnership with the La Mesa- Spring Valley School District, East County Earth Day will feature vendors whose missions are environmentally friendly along with live music and a variety of speakers.
January 6, 2011(LMt. Helix)--Kick off the New Year with a January 8 neighborhood walk from the San Miguel Fire Station, at 10105 Vivera in La Mesa, up to the amphitheater in Mt. Helix Park starting at 10 a.m.
The walk, co-sponsored by the Grossmont-Mt. Helix Improvement Association and the Mt. Helix Park Foundation, is a chance for neighbors to get to know each other.
December 30, 2010 (San Diego) – Across the County, emergency crews are busy repairing roads and assessing other damage from the most recent storm.
Following on the heels of last week’s heavy storms which saturated soils and overflowed numerous waterways, the most recent downpour caused additional rock and mudslides, undermined roads and caused potholes and sinkholes.
November 29, 2010 (San Diego's East County) -- While residents in other parts of the country are shoveling snow, and even coastal residents are contending with foggy winter days, here in East County it's been a week to savor some beautiful moments. We hope you'll enjoy a few of the best shots captured by our readers and staff this week in East County!
Development interests seek to make it easier to build housing projects in rural areas
October 9, 2010 (San Diego) – Work has been underway for years to update the County’s General Plan. But in August, a coalition headed by the Building Industry Association, San Diego Realtors Associations, and other pro-development interests has published a white paper calling for drastic changes. Supervisors will hear the proposal on October 20th at 9 a.m.
“The paper insists that clustering of housing into small, non-conforming lots should be a developer’s right,” said Valle de Oro Community Planning group chairman Jack Phillips, in a letter warning County residents that the result could be condominiums on Mt. Helix and in other semi-rural areas. “If this type of `anything goes’ future development is allowed, then our property values will probably go, too.”
Part IV in a five-part series featuring gardens on the Grossmont-Mt. Helix Improvement Association (www.gmia.net) spring garden tour.
By Miriam Raftery
September 21, 2010 (Mt. Helix) -- The turreted home of Ron and Mary Alice Brady sits atop a 1 ¾ acre hilltop on Resmar Road, with stunning 360-degree views. Reminiscent of a Mediterranean villa, the residence features clay tile roofs with staggered heights, mosaic-tiled chimneys, octagonal skylights and a three-story glazed, leaded glass stair enclosure.
East County News Service
September 13, 2010 (Mt. Helix) – The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency is conducting an enforcement operation in the Mt. Helix area of La Mesa, East County Magazine has learned.
“We have served four search warrants and seized approximately 500 marijuana plants and two rifles,” Amy Roderick, public information officer with the DEA’s San Diego field division, informed ECM at 10:55 a.m.
Part 3 in a 5-part series on gardens featured in the 2010 Grossmont-Mt. Helix Association garden tour.
August 27, 2010 (Mt. Helix) -- Dick and Cynthia Jackson have made the most of seemingly every inch in the front and back yards of their modest-sized home on Bonnie Vista. A courtyard of bricks set in sand welcomes guests to this charming garden, where classic boxwood hedges define a patriotic garden of red, white and blue blooms including hollyhocks, roses, silver sheen and razzleberry.
Part 1: English Tudor's country gardens are fit for royalty
By Miriam Raftery
July 19, 2010 (Mt. Helix) – Ever wonder what lies behind those gated estates on Mt. Helix? Each spring, Grossmont-Mt. Helix Improvement Association (GMIA) hosts an art and garden tour open to members only, showcasing amazingly elaborate landscapes (as well as works by local artists).
Some tour gardens are lavish, located on large lots where results are limited only by well-heeled owners’ imaginations. These range from an English country garden at a manor fit for a queen to a private jungle that Indiana Jones would envy. Others are at more modest properties where creative homeowners have made the most of limited space and water conservation practices. This week, we feature the first of five spectacular gardens from this year’s tour.
Update May 20: Supervisors approved the Fuerte Ranch Estates project.
May 14, 2010 (Mt. Helix) – County Supervisors will vote Wednesday on whether or not to approve Reynolds Communities proposed Fuerte Ranch Estates development on the site of a former chicken ranch. Reynolds has scaled back initial plans from 76 to 36 homes on the 27-acre parcel adjacent to Damon Lane County Park at Fuerte Drive and Damon Lane.
The plan has ruffled feathers among many area residents, also raising hackles of East County planners.
May 7, 2010 (Mt. Helix) –This Sunday, docents at Mt. Helix Park will give free carnations to the first 36 mothers who visit the park starting at 10:30 a.m.
“Mt. Helix Park is actually a memorial to Mary Yawkey. Mrs. Yawkey had loved the peace and natural beauty of Mt. Helix so her children, Mary Yawkey White and Cyrus Yawkey, created a memorial park and amphitheater with the support of land owner Ed Fletcher,” said Tracey Stotz, executive director of the Mt. Helix Park Foundation. “The memorial park opened in the 1920s and here we are in 2010 still enjoying this lovely facility."
April 13, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – The first annual East County Earth Day will be held on Sunday, April 25 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the ampitheater on the top of Mt. Helix. In addition to learning about sustainability and eco-friendly practices, visitors can enjoy live music and presentations ranging from falconry to aquatic animals.
East County Earth Day Entertainment Schedule:
December 28, 2009 (Mt. Helix) – Need to get in shape after all that holiday feasting? Join members of the Grossmont Mount Helix Improvement Association (GMIA) for a 1.3 round-trip walk up Mt. Helix on January 2nd at 10 a.m.