El Cajon, CA
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Articles by BJ Coleman

The formal grand opening of the still-under-construction, expanded Sycuan Casino-Resort is several weeks away, slated for March. But the anticipation is itself still building, especially with announcement of the “iconic” local restaurants that will have outlets within new enlarged facility’s dining corridor called the UnCommons.

Does Downtown El Cajon need a new craft beer brewery?

The answer is a big yes from patrons who crowded the initial soft-opening date for Creative Creature Brewing Company, during late afternoon and evening hours on Friday, Oct. 5, near the iconic Downtown El Cajon sign at the intersection of Main Street and Magnolia Avenue.

Scott Amos is the lieutenant who commands Lemon Grove’s substation of the County of San Diego’s Sheriff’s Department. On Tuesday evening, Oct. 9, Amos welcomed Lemon Grove residents to the first-ever evening session of “Coffee with the Community,” held at Anna’s Family Restaurant on Broadway in Lemon Grove.

The stated intentions are simple but impressive: throw a festive party that invites each attendee to dress and feel like royalty in order to provide measures that will help local homeless persons overcome their homelessness.

The fundraising event was the 5th Annual Royals Masquerade Ball on the evening of Sunday, September 16th.

The Horton Grand Hotel in downtown San Diego was the site, with its open-air central brick courtyard lighted by strands of lights that invited partygoers to mingle at stand-up cocktail tables and sample small-portion desserts.

The concept is simple and deeply compassionate: provide sufficient support to frail, low-income seniors so that they can live independently at home as they choose, rather than being relegated to skilled nursing facilities. This has been the mission guiding St. Paul’s PACE since the local program’s inception one decade ago.

The American Legion Riders are military veterans and family members who ride motorcycles. They are widely acknowledged as movers and shakers within The American Legion’s programs and organizations. At the early July installation of San Diego County’s District 22 elected officers, District 22 Commander Chris Yates asked Riders attending the ceremony to stand for recognition.

“The Riders are among the most effective programs, if not being the most effective program, in The American Legion,” said Yates.

Where will the next generation of California’s community leaders come from? The American Legion, the nation’s largest veterans service organization, has a partial answer in the Boys State program, which taps young men of talent and promise after their junior year of high school, for a weeklong exercise in participatory democracy.

Staged every year since the chamber started a decade ago, decked with sweet and savory appeal, the Annual Taste of La Mesa has again displayed how high the bar is set for food excellence in East County.

The Taste of La Mesa showcases local restaurants, with samples of featured cuisine amid a lively business mixer setting. This year’s taste-filled gathering was held at the La Mesa Community Center on Monday, June 11.

May is Military Appreciation Month, and members of the Santee American Legion Riders Chapter 364 worked to express tangible gratitude to their fellow military veterans on Saturday, May 19, staging the recently chartered group’s first fundraising event, the First Annual Poker Run. The objective was to boost both camaraderie among veterans who ride motorcycles and money available to support worthy causes benefiting military veterans.

The run began at Indian Motorcycle of El Cajon in the morning and concluded at Santee American Legion Post 364 at midday.

The Kiwanis Club of Santee has a special regard for those who protect and serve local residents in law enforcement positions. On Saturday, May 12, the club hosted the organization’s 21st Annual Law Enforcement Recognition at Lantern Crest Senior Living in Santee. The program included dinner and announcement of awards for standout members of law enforcement in East County, honoring officers who have served with particular distinction over the prior year.