Inland Edition, May 24, 2024

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City OKs new plate readers


cos has joined other North County cities in approving the implementation of license plate reader cameras to deter and solve local crimes. The city also plans to offer residents and businesses a Safe Cities program to register their own security cameras with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.

The San Marcos City Council unanimously agreed on May 14 to execute a memorandum of understanding with the Sheriff’s Department to place 10 Flock Falcon license plate readers (LPRs) at various ingress and egress points throughout the city.

The solar-powered cameras can cover two lanes of traffic at distances of up to 65 feet and capture images of vehicles traveling up to 70 miles per hour in all weather conditions. They record the license plate number, time, date and location of each capture.

City Manager Michelle Bender said implementing these cameras will take some time as the city identifies funding and waits for it to arrive. According to a staff report, the purchase, implementation and maintenance of the cameras are anticipated to cost around $40,000 annually.

“The license plate readers, we do need to determine if we can get some grant funding… and


NEW BALLGAME: Athletes and coaches at the University of Saint Katherine were left scrambling after the San Marcos school abruptly ceased operations last month. Nearly all of the school’s 300 students were involved in the Firebirds athletic program, including freshman basketball player Kylani Rookstool, above. STORY ON 9

Music museum back with bang

Carlsbad’s extensively renovated Museum of Making Music now has even more interactive opportunities. Hit the Road on 7

Vista strike ends

Escondido seeks new operator for arts center

city is looking for a new entity to take over the operations and financial obligations of the California Center for the Arts, which would help relieve pressure on its growing budget shortfall.

The city’s $11.3 million structural budget deficit is expected to grow over the next few years without a new source of

revenue. Last year, it began exploring ways to reduce funding non-essential services while seeking fresh revenue streams.

The California Center for the Arts is a 191,000-square-foot building in downtown Escondido. The complex includes 1,500- and 400seat theaters, a conference center, an art museum, offices and outdoor space. The venue was

completed in 1994 at a cost of approximately $81 million.

The center’s intention was to provide a space for visual and performing arts events and to encourage cultural and educational opportunities for the community. However, since the facility opened, its operations have not generated effective reve-


Homelessness group also eyeing Green Oak

VISTA — The County of San Diego is facing some competition in its bid for the Green Oak Ranch property in Vista, as North County homelessness nonprofit Solutions for Change continues discussions with the landowners that they say started long before the county threw its hat in the ring.

Around 110 acres of the 142acre ranch were put up for sale almost a year after the passing of the land’s former owner, Arie de Jong, last April. The county Board of Supervisors, with strong advocacy from Supervisor Jim Desmond, announced in late April that they were entering negotiations with ranch owners to purchase the property for a sober living and behavioral health treatment facility.

For Solutions for Change president Chris Megison, whose nonprofit had already been in talks with the ranch about a private purchase for about 10 months, the announcement seemed very sudden.

“It was surprising to us, of course, when Jim Desmond and the board kind of came barrelling into this thing at the last minute,” Megison said. “There couldn’t be a bigger contrast, really, between our approach and that of the county.”

While the county proposes a

VOL. 11, N0. 11 May 24, 2024 VISTA, SAN MARCOS, ESCONDIDO T he CoasT News SAN DIEGO
County has competition for Vista site
Courtesy photo/USK
TURN TO GREEN OAK ON 5 More than 100 US Food workers reach deal after nearly two-week action. 5
CHRIS MEGISON, president of Vista-based Solutions for Change.
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Teen fatal shooting victim ID’d

The San Marcos Sheriff’s Department has identified the 17-year-old victim killed in a shooting at a shopping center last week.

Isaac Shekhayem of San Marcos was shot late in the evening on May 15 while standing with a group in a parking lot in the 900 block of Los Vallecitos Boulevard when an unknown assailant exited a vehicle and fired several shots toward the group.

Shekhayem, who suffered a gunshot injury to the upper torso, was transported by two companions to Palomar Medical Center, where he later died.

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Homicide Unit is continuing to investigate the shooting, including the motivation and circumstances. There is still no information to share about the suspect, the department said.

A GoFundMe created to raise funds for Shekhayem’s memorial has raised over $6,800 as of Tuesday. The fundraiser describes the 17-year-old as a “caring and loving person who’d always look out for the people he cared about.”

Anyone with information about this shooting is urged to call the Homicide Unit at (858) 285-6330 or after hours at (858) 5655200. Anonymous reports can be made by calling Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

Esco police warn of flasher


Authorities warned the public last week about a flasher who has victimized several women in Escondido in recent days.

The crimes occurred on Cranston Drive and South Escondido Boulevard between May 5 and May 11, according to police. The unidentified perpetrator drove up alongside victims in an older-model gray or black Volvo station wagon, made lewd comments to them and exposed himself.

Esco makes modest progress on new housing

The city has approved construction of approximately 11.3% of its state-mandated new housing stock within the last three years and only has five more years to build the rest.

Escondido is required to build 9,607 new homes by 2029 and only 1,088 units were added between 2021 and 2023, according to a staff report on the city’s Housing Element.

The City Council adopted the 2021-2029 Sixth Cycle Housing Element

in 2021 with a following amendment in 2023, when the city’s adopted Housing Element officially came into compliance with state law.

The State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is the governing body that assesses the housing stock situation throughout California every eight years to determine how many new homes are needed based on predicted population growth, job availability and infrastructure capacity.

Working with the San Diego Association of Gov-

ernments (SANDAG), the state and county government has tasked each municipality in the county with a regional housing need assessment (RHNA) – the number of new homes they have to build.

San Diego County must build 171,685 homes by 2029, and Escondido must take on 9,607 or 5.6% of that total. Broken down by household income, the city must build 1,864 very low, 1,249 low, 1,527 moderate and 4,967 above moderate units.

So far, the city has ap-

proved construction of 843 above moderate, 40 moderate, 111 low and 94 very low income units.

Associate Planner Pricila Roldan presented an update on the city’s Housing Element to the City Council on May 8. She noted most of the new homes consist of multi units and accessory dwelling units.

Council members were generally pleased with the presentation but expressed a desire to see more new homes come down the pipeline.

“It sounds like we’re on

Teen killed in motorcycle crash mourned

The Vista community is mourning the death of 19-year-old Christopher Hendrickson, a MiraCosta College student and beloved Chick-fil-A employee who was killed in a collision on May 9 while riding his motorcycle.

That day, Christopher had just gotten a motorcycle endorsement on his license and was riding back from the DMV when he fatally collided with a vehicle pulling out of a shopping center parking lot along Hacienda Drive around 1 p.m.

He would have celebrated his 20th birthday the next day. A large memorial now stands outside that parking lot, with dozens of bouquets, pictures, notes and snacks left in Christopher’s memory.

Christopher’s older



nue, forcing the city to subsidize its operations through the general fund.

The average five-year annual subsidy cost to operate the facility is nearly $4.6 million. Part of that cost is a $660,000 annual payment to the California Center for the Arts Escondido Foundation for operations and management services. This agreement is valid through June 30 of this year, with an option to extend another year.

To ease that financial burden, the city has request-

brother Noah, 24, said his younger brother could be described with one word: positivity. He was funny and caring, a proud momma’s boy, and helped the people in his life who found themselves in a dark place.

“He was just the overall light of any room he was in,” Noah said. “He was the embodiment of positivity.”

Christopher graduated from Guajome Park Academy in 2022 and was taking computer science classes at MiraCosta. He loved his two cats and was passionate about exotic cars and riding motorcycles — although they made his mom nervous — and enjoyed going to car meets with his friends.

A GoFundMe for Christopher’s family and funeral expenses has raised over $42,000 as of Friday. It was organized by Luis Gomez,

ed proposals from entities seeking to use and operate the arts center. The application process opened on May 15 and will end on Nov. 1, with a new operator expected to be chosen by April 2025.

Negotiations will also determine who will be responsible for the center’s nearly $5.8 million in additional modernization repairs. Necessary upgrades include kitchen plumping, carpet, roofing, feeder seating, sound absorption, LED lighting conversion, wiring, plant chiller and reheating system, among others.

Council members were

Christopher’s boss at the Chick-Fil-A location along Vista Village Drive, where he worked for the past two years.

The restaurant location also held a Cookies for Chris event this past week, selling six packs of cookies to raise money for his family.

“Chris is loved by many and is one of the greatest young men you’d ever have the pleasure to meet. He was a respectful, hard-working, servant-minded gentlemen [sic]. He will be missed by everyone he has interacted with, including the 100’s of friends, Chick-fil-A Team Members and 1000s of guests,” Gomez wrote.

Michelle Maier, Christopher’s mother, said she and her son were very close and he “could always make you laugh.”

Feeling all the love that

concerned about a new entity’s influence on the center’s operations and how the move would impact the city’s control.

“We could lose influence over what we’d like to see at the center,” said Deputy Mayor Christian Garcia at the May 8 council meeting.

The council will have the final say on a contract award to manage the arts center.

In the end, the City Council approved the request for proposal process in a 4-1 vote, with Councilmember Consuelo Martinez opposed.

Martinez objected to

the right track,” Mayor Dane White said, noting he’d like to see the new housing numbers “multiplied by 9.”

Deputy Mayor Christian Garcia agreed. “We’ve got to make progress,” he said. “If we could multiply that by 7 or 8, that would be great.”

Councilmember Mike Morasco lambasted the state’s housing requirements, calling them ridiculous, “nonsensical, poorly allocated or assigned,” with “zero practical application


Count shows homelessness in SD up 3%


The number of people experiencing homelessness in San Diego County in 2024 increased by an estimated 3% over the previous year, according to data released Wednesday from January's Point-in-Time Count.

The count, conducted by more than 1,700 volunteers spread across San Diego County through the Regional Task Force on Homelessness, is a oneday snapshot of the minimum number of people experiencing homelessness throughout the region.

people had for Christopher through their support has helped her as she navigates his loss.

“The whole community has just been rallying behind this kid,” Michelle said. “It’s like he made sure I was going to be okay after he left. Even though he’s not here, he’s still taking care of me, per se.”

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department is continuing to investigate the collision. After obtaining dash cam footage from a nearby vehicle at the scene, Sgt. Eric Cottrell said the motorcycle appeared to be traveling at an excessive speed when it struck the rear driver-side door of the car that was pulling out.

Along with Noah and Michelle, Christopher is survived by his older sister Krysten and father Chris.

the plan because it was different from other proposal processes. She was uncomfortable with the idea that two council members would be directly involved in proposal review.

Martinez also felt it was odd to add the $5.8 million in maintenance repairs, noting that they should be the city’s responsibility.

“It’s our building,” she said.

Director of Economic Development Jennifer Schoeneck said divulging all potential maintenance needed for a building during real estate negotiations is fairly typical, as some ten-

The volunteers found no less than 10,605 people in the count, which included 6,110 unsheltered and 4,495 people in shelters and transitional housing.

Those numbers -while nominally less than in 2023 — do include an 18% increase in unsheltered people.

In 2023, the number jumped up around 20% from the previous year.

“While a 3% increase is encouraging, we counted more people in unsheltered conditions across the region,” said RTFH CEO Tamera Kohler.

According to the count, the number of homeless people increased by around 200 in each region of the county. The numbers also reflect a 44% increase in people living in their cars and a decreased in shelter or other temporary housing options.

ants can take on such repairs.

“We’d like to include all available information to allow potential entities to take it all into account,” Schoeneck said.

Councilmember Mike Morasco was “completely behind” the process, noting that requesting proposals is another tool to help address the city’s growing budget shortfall.

“It’s not reinventing the wheel by any means,” he said. Schoeneck said one prospective tenant was interested a week before the application period opening.

May 24, 2024 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N 3
CHRISTOPHER HENDRICKSON, 19, worked at the Chick-fil-A at Highway 78 and Vista Village Drive and was known as a hardworking and friendly employee who connected with customers. At right, a memorial for Hendrickson was set up along Hacienda Drive where he was killed in a motorcycle collision May 9, the day before his 20th birthday. Courtesy photo/by Laura Place ISAAC SHEKHAYEM, 17, died at the hospital after being shot May 15 cos parking lot. Courtesy photo

The CoasT News

Opinion & Editorial







Sandy Elliott


Becky Roland








Samantha Nelson Oceanside, Carlsbad, Escondido

Laura Place

Del Mar, Solana Beach, San Marcos

Claire Strong Encinitas

Chris Ahrens (Waterspot)

David Boylan (Lick the Plate)

E’Louise Ondash (Hit the Road)

Jano Nightingale (Jano’s Garden)

Jay Paris (Sports Talk)

Scott Chambers (Cartoonist)

Frank Mangio & Rico Cassoni (Taste of Wine & Food)


Samantha Mason

Another tax debate

It’s an election year, which means time to talk about tax increases. This year we see proposals by the San Diego Association of Governments for a countywide sales tax increase as well as higher tax rates being floated by the cities of Encinitas, Escondido, Santee and San Diego. Encinitas is “exploring” the idea of adding 1% to their sales tax “to pay for much-need improvements to the city’s roadways, drainage systems and other infrastructure.”

Escondido has a “coalition of community leaders, business members, labor and public safety organizations” making an effort to add 1% to its sales tax. Because the city “revenue has not been able to keep pace with the growing costs of providing services.”

Santee is proposing a “temporary” sales tax increase. Proponents say it’s needed to “build and staff two new fire stations” and reduce response times.

And in San Diego we see a push developing to add a point onto their sales tax. The city recently took steps to cut library funding to plug a potential $220 million deficit.

All appear to be altruistic efforts to fund services we all want. The pitches are focused on funding services that are good for the community.

payments to employee pension plans.

Public agencies make two types of contributions to employee pension plans. The “normal” payment is a contribution to pension coverage based on a percentage of the employee’s pay.

Similar to private 401K employer contributions, but where it usually ends there in private plans, in public plans that normal contribution is just the starting point.

Public employees have been promised payments higher than the normal contributions can fund. To keep those promises, an unfunded actuarial liability (UAL)

Having a city claim tax increases are needed for a host of reasons that ignore the real cause ... is misleading at best.

was $322.9 million. That’s a growth rate of 4.4% per year.

All growth rates exceed inflation, and all are increases in cost that have nothing to do with maintaining streets, providing library services, or improving police and fire response.

The city of San Diego tells us it’s going to cut from the neediest residents but doesn’t mention it’s doing that to benefit its employees.

We have an obligation to keep our pension promises, but the decision is not “how do we keep pensioners from having to live in the street,” but whether the need to fund higher pensions outweighs the need to fund better services for residents.

Pension data provided by the agencies to Transparent California shows the average annual pension payment of an Encinitas employee retiring after a full career (30+ years) was $105,085. In Santee, $99,317; Escondido $95,066; San Diego, $90,828.

Maybe the residents of Encinitas and other cities feel this is inadequate and want to ensure ever-increasing pension payments are made.

Should agitation be on the syllabus?

It’s a question central to the commencement cancellations, protest encampments and building takeovers that have been significant features of college life across California and America this spring: Should taxpayers fund college classes in agitation and protest, currently offered on many campuses?

No one knows exactly how many products of these classes have populated the protests and arrest rolls this spring, but bet on there being a significant number.

Not every campus offers such classes today, and what they teach can be used anywhere in protests of almost anything, from support for Palestinians and Hamas to backing Israel and organizing insurrections that invade government buildings to disrupt key proceedings.

But since a substantial percentage of those arrested around the country this spring had no connection to the campuses where they camped out — 60% of arrestees at City University of New York, 24 of 64 at UC San Diego, 40% at MIT and 26 of 33 at the University of Pennsylvania, for just four examples — it’s a safe bet at least some of the springtime protesters were trained in agitation by public institutions.

Here’s what the catalog entry says about “Communications Studies 20, Agitation and Protest,” an offering of Santa Monica College, the community college sending more transfer students than any other to the University of California:

“Agitational and protest communication includes the strategies, tactics and communication utilized by movements to resist or provide different perspectives, including those that have been excluded or silenced.


bands during the five-day encampment on the grassy central quad there.

Classes akin to the Santa Monica College course are listed in catalogs of several California State University campuses, including those in San Marcos, Long Beach and Sacramento.

The Long Beach State catalog entry describes “Communications Studies 415 – Rhetoric of Social Movements and Protest” — as a three-unit course that “examines goals, strategies and effects of groups that form to advocate social, political and/or moral change. Focuses on how (agitator) groups communicate messages and how institutions of power respond in order to control or resist change.”

Descriptions are very similar at virtually all campuses offering this type of class.

Similar classes are spreading to other campuses, too. UCLA, for one, next fall will inaugurate a new undergraduate seminar “highlighting Asian American and Pacific Islander politics and policy advocacy” that will “allow UCLA students to put theory into practice this fall.”

A question no campus has yet addressed is whether public colleges exist in part to help unify Americans or to contribute to social unrest and racial and ethnic identity politics. Or possibly both.


Helping the disadvantaged, fixing streets, maintaining libraries, improving public safety. If we listen to the words being spoken they simply do not have enough money to provide what people need.

But let’s ignore the words for a moment and look at actual spending numbers.

President Joe Biden says, “Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget and I’ll tell you what you value,” so let’s use Joe’s rule to see what they value.

Certainly, the cost of everything has increased, but inflationary increases in the cost of services to residents are dwarfed by growth in

payment needs to be made — on top of the normal contribution — every year. Real numbers show those UAL payments are consuming an increasing amount of city budgets.

In Encinitas UAL payments grew from $2.6M in 2018 to $5.1M in 2023, up an astounding 14% per year. That’s a growth rate over four times greater than inflation during that time. And that’s not unique.

Escondido’s 2018 UAL payments went from $13.7 million to $26.3 million, also growing almost 14% each year. Santee’s UAL went from $1.8M to $4.1M in 2023, a rise of 18% per year.

San Diego’s latest data available is for 2022, which shows a contribution of $400.5 million. Five years ago in 2017, the number

But having a city claim tax increases are needed for a host of reasons that ignore the real cause of financial issues is misleading at best.

An honest discussion of tax increases should start by using data to identify the reason additional revenues are needed.

Perhaps it’s time for our cities to look at solving the root cause of the problem and finding a way to move new employees onto a more affordable program (as San Diego once tried to do), rather than slapping a taxpayer-funded band-aid over the problem?

We need to have that open discussion now if we don’t want to see these tax increase debates every few years forever.

Todd Maddison is the director of research for watchdog agency Transparent California

“Attention is given to theories, contexts and strategies…as well as numerous examples of diverse protest movements in modern and contemporary history.”

The class offers three transferable credits that count toward UC graduation. Did the protesters at UCLA who allegedly blocked the entrance to the main undergraduate library there this spring to all who lacked a yellow wristband learn that tactic in such a class?

Some UCLA students said they could not enter that library until and unless they obtained the wristband by signing a statement backing the Palestinian side in the current Middle East conflict.

UCLA officials did not return calls and emails requesting authentication for that claim, but did say some public walkways were blocked to people not wearing yellow wrist-

But there is no doubt this spring’s spate of campus encampments have blocked Jews and other “Zionists” from entering some buildings and spaces, like the UCLA encampment itself. Denizens of the encampment there erected barriers to keep out anyone not in agreement with their cause.

Some participants were videoed preventing Jewish students from walking to classes and while accosting a student wearing a Star of David necklace. Said Nicole Rosen, spokesperson for the Santa Cruz-based AMCHA Initiative, which has long tracked campus anti-Semitism nationally, “When universities don’t insist on enforcing their policies and holding students accountable, with consequences, outside agitators and extreme students will take over.”

Meanwhile, the contributions of publicly funded classes teaching how to accomplish this have so far not been officially measured this spring.

4 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N May 24, 2024
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US Foods workers end Vista strike

Over 100

workers at the Vista warehouse of national food distributor and supplier US Foods were on strike for nearly two weeks until Tuesday, when management and Teamsters Local 542, a union representing the workers, reached an agreement.

Since May 9, around 105 workers have been on a 24-hour strike outside the US Foods warehouse along Park Center Drive, demanding safe working conditions, wages that keep up with inflation, US Foods’ honoring of the collective bargaining agreement’s negotiated terms and conditions, and workers’ respect and dignity.

Representatives with US Foods and Teamsters Local 542 confirmed that a deal had been reached midday on May 21 after US Foods returned with an offer for a five-year contract term retroactive to April 1.

“We are very pleased to have reached an agreement as a result of good faith bargaining,” a US Foods spokesperson said.

Teamsters Local 542 Business Agent Shelly Allsup lauded members for their commitment to reaching a fair agreement and thanked community members who


$280 million facility with much-needed behavioral health beds, Solutions for Change hopes to use the ranch to expand its Solutions Academy for families experiencing homelessness, specifically for additional housing and workforce development training.

The organization’s twoyear vocational academy provides educational, personal and workforce development, housing, and other resources to families and individuals who are homeless or in poverty, have lost work, have struggled with addiction, are victims of domestic violence or abuse, and are formerly incarcer-

supported them on and off the picket lines.

“Our US Foods Teamsters members have demonstrated incredible strength and determination in the fight for better working conditions. Their unwavering commitment and relentless efforts have been truly inspiring,” Allsup said. “Together, we have shown that when we stand strong and support each other, we can achieve remarkable things.”

The Coast News has requested more information about the terms of the contract.

During the strike, workers in Vista worked multihour shifts to hold the picket line, which extended to the US Foods location in La Mirada.

“We’re out here for better wages, better benefits and safety,” said Daniel Humes, a lead sanitation worker who has been with US Foods for nearly 25 years, speaking from the picket line on the ninth day of the strike.

Members voted against an offer made last week, which included a 25-cent increase in the third year of the contract. A US Foods representative said at the time that the company was “disappointed” by the union’s actions.

“We are disappointed

ated individuals.

Megison and Solutions for Change have distinguished themselves from other homelessness nonprofits by vocally opposing the Housing First approach, which prohibits nonprofits receiving state funding from mandating sobriety and addiction treatment for shelter.

Solutions for Change has refused to use this model, losing millions of dollars in state funding over the years and the closure of five of its previous housing complexes in 2020. The organization now relies on donations to fund its programs.

“The state mandate is one-size-fits-all, and the county has to follow that. We are community-driv-

the union has not accepted our highly competitive offer and that they are taking these strike actions. We remain open to productive negotiations to reach a mutually beneficial agreement that recognizes the contributions of our hard-working associates. In the meantime, we have business continuity plans in place to continue serving our valued customers who rely on us every day, which includes a temporary workforce that is currently in place,” US Foods said on May 16.

Jorge Martinez, an employee of 25 years, emphasized that while it is a good company to work for, wages have not kept up with inflation, and it is difficult to make ends meet. Members voted down another offer from US Foods on Thursday, which included a 25cent raise in the third year of their contract.

“It’s hard to feed our families, rent and all. That is one of the main issues,” Martinez said.

Improvements to worker safety were one of the main demands. Regarding loading pallets onto the trucks, workers say pallets of food are stacked very high, causing them to “dig through” to find the necessary ones. There is also the

en and from the ground up, we’re people-driven, so when people come to us and say we want a place that’s drug-free, we give them that,” Megison said.

If they purchase the land, Solutions for Change would move around 70% of its operations to the ranch from its current four-acre property along California Avenue in Vista, Megison said.

“We’re talking about a multiyear development effort here. The academy has on-campus housing, so we would be talking about developing and building the academy out at the ranch with more on-campus housing,” Megison said. “It’s a beautiful piece of property with a lot there to offer, so

Campus rallies demand divestment from Israel

Over 100 students at Cal State San Marcos rallied at Kellogg Plaza this month to call on the CSU system to divest from Israel, as the calls for an end to genocide in Palestine continue at university campuses across the country.

The demonstration on May 9 was among the latest in the San Diego region, which was roiled by the arrest of 65 students, staff and other protestors at UC San Diego the same week after law enforcement dismantled a solidarity encampment at the La Jolla campus.

risk of them falling off the back of the truck.

Geraldo Reyes, who has been with US Foods for 29 years and currently works in the warehouse, said there are also areas that need repairs. Driving the trucks over large cracks in the driveway to the warehouse causes back pain after a while, he said.

“After a while, you start feeling the cracks on your back,” he said. “They come up with reasons, like ‘we don’t have the budget, but as soon as we can, we’ll fix it.’”

Several officials visited the strike line to support members, including Vista City Council members Corinna Contreras and Katie Melendez and 74th State Assembly candidate Chris Duncan.

“In the City of Vista, we believe the union is necessary for economic stability, excellence in skill, and constructive communication. I firmly believe that every working individual deserves equality, opportunity, and the chance to create a better future for themselves and their families,” Melendez said last week.

Teamsters Local 542 also represents workers at local UPS chapters, the San Diego Convention Center, and the Del Mar Turf Club, among other companies.

we’d have a lot of resources for the community there and to serve our people.”

For now, Green Oak Ranch has yet to confirm the sale to any party and is continuing negotiations with the county, Solutions for Change, and potentially other bidders. The Coast News has contacted the real estate company handling the sale for comment.

The county has paid a $300,000 earnest deposit on what they estimate will be a $12 million cost for the land. Desmond said it was Green Oak Ranch who approached the county about their land, and he emphasized that the county’s vision would greatly benefit the region.

“The owners of Green

At Cal State San Marcos, UCSD and several other universities, many students and faculty are demanding that schools cut all ties with Israel, including educational partnerships with universities in Israel and investments in companies profiting from the government’s ongoing assault in Gaza that has killed over 34,000 people.

San Marcos students said that leaders of the CSU — the nation’s largest public university system — have not been transparent about where the schools’ investments are allocated.

“We cannot stand idly by as our tax dollars, our tuition, continue to fund the destruction of an entire people,” one student said.

CSUSM students spoke out in support of those at other universities nationwide who have faced backlash from administrators and law enforcement for protesting. Zuzu, a student at CSUSM, applauded those at UCSD who faced arrests and violent pushback from police earlier this week.

“They are courageous students,” Zuzu said. “They shouldn’t have been arrested, no one should have. They shouldn’t have been maced, no religious leader should have been maced. They were chanting, they weren’t doing anything.”

Both the CSU and UC systems have made it clear that they do not intend to change their investment policies. They state that a boycott of companies relat-

Oak Ranch approached the county to ask if there was interest in purchasing the property. My vision for North County has been focused on treatment and healing, not shelters, parking lots or any Housing First proposals,” Desmond wrote in a statement. “I envision Green Oak Ranch as a sanctuary for recovery, with 24/7 staff, services, and security, providing longer-term care rather than a revolving door of temporary solutions. The facility will offer a supportive environment for individuals seeking to transform their lives, providing essential services not readily available to those in need.”

The parcel for sale currently houses a popular

ed to Israel would threaten academic freedom and the free exchange of ideas and views on campuses.

Despite this, some faculty are encouraging students to continue their fight. Jason Magabo Perez, CSUSM ethnic studies director, professor and San Diego Poet Laureate, thanked students for their advocacy.

“There are going to be voices, your own professors, that are going to be telling you and that have been telling you, that you don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said. “I would not be here as faculty, I would not be here committed to the struggles that ethnic studies is committed to, without the students.”

Another CSUSM student shared about her friend, who is currently living in Rafah with three children under the age of 10, whose husband was killed in a bombing. She played a voice message from her friends’ children, thanking her and other students for standing up for them.

“Know that even though we’re a small school, we reached Gaza,” she said. “Remember, that this is who you’re fighting for.”

summer camp and retreat center, an RV park, and a residential men’s recovery program operated by Green Oak Ranch Ministries. When the land is sold, the ministry will lose 85% of its funding for the recovery and sober living program.

Hannah Gailey, executive director of Green Oak Ranch Ministries, has stated that while the recovery program will continue to operate in another area of the ranch, the sale will still mean a huge loss for the ministry and the community at large.

“No matter who buys the ranch, the ministry loses funding, and the county loses an enormous resource in camps and retreats,” Gailey said.

May 24, 2024 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N 5
MEMBERS OF Teamsters Local 542 at the US Foods distribution center in Vista, pictured May 17, were striking in demand of better working conditions and wages. The sides reached an agreement on Tuesday. Photo by Laura Place CSUSM ETHNIC studies director and San Diego Poet Laureate Jason Magabo Perez speaks at a pro-Palestine rally on May 9 at Cal State San Marcos. Photo by Laura Place

Esco replacing play structures

— Using a combination of state and federal funds, Escondido plans to replace nearly half of its playground structures at parks throughout the city over the summer with modernized, inclusive playground equipment.

On May 8, the City Council approved using about $521,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to replace both the ages 2 to 5 and ages 5 to 12 playground equipment at Jesmond Dene, Westside and Washington Parks.

Additionally, the council also agreed to use a $892,000 grant from the San Diego County Park Improvement Project to replace similar equipment at Mountain View and Kit Carson Parks.

Both projects will replace 11 of the city’s 23 playgrounds. The city will purchase playground equipment through Sourcewell with Miracle Recreation Equipment Company.

According to staff,

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The Prebys Foundation invested $6 million in grants to 23 local organizations supporting mental and emotional well-being of youth and young adults within San Diego County. These recipients include ‘ataaxum Pomkwaan Inc., Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater San Diego, Boys to Men Mentoring Network, California State San Marcos University Foundation, Champions for Health, Father Joe’s Villages, Girl Scouts San Diego, North County LGBTQ Resource Center and Rady Children’s Hospital, among others.


The following students graduated from their respective institutions: Kai Haseyama of Encinitas from Westminster College in Pennsylvania; Ramy Saber

these parks were prioritized due to their age and the need for playground equipment replacement.

Parks Superintendent Wayne Thames said the structures have experienced a handful of aging failures over the last few years that could not be completely fixed or replaced because the original manufacturer discontinued replacement parts or went out of business altogether.

At the Kit Carson Tree Lake play structure, for example, one of the slides had to be removed and replaced with a wall panel because the manufacturer no longer made replacement slides for that model.

If the structures are left as is, the city could have to remove them completely, like the playground train for children ages 2 to 5 at the East Valley Community Center.

Thames said the new playgrounds will feature inclusive designs that enable children with disabilities to play independently.

“Inclusivity is much more than providing wheelchair access,” Thames said.

“Wheelchair and other visible mobility impairments account for a small fraction of disabilities; the majority are invisible and include a broad range of cognitive or physical impairments.”

The community also got a say in the new playground designs after staff installed signage at the parks that asked visitors which options they preferred. The city received 738 responses overall.

“I love the designs,” said Mayor Dane White. “All of these are fantastic upgrades.”

Mountain View and Kit Carson’s playground replacements are expected to be complete by July, while Jesmond Dene, Washington and Westside replacements are expected to wrap in late August.

The playgrounds at Grove Park, El Norte Park, the East Valley Community Center and the Don E. Anderson building will be replaced using CDBG funding next. The city has yet to identify funding to replace the aging structures at McLeod Park and Lake Dixon Hilltop Park.

Economic summit forecasts slower growth, soft landing

The San Diego North Economic Development Council hosted its 11th Annual North County Economic Summit on May 7 on the campus of California State University, San Marcos, featuring keynote speaker Charles Dougherty from Wells Fargo Bank.

The event brought together North County industry leaders, policymakers and experts to discuss the latest national economic trends and projections.

Dougherty, executive director and senior economist at Wells Fargo Corporate and Investment Bank, provided the audience of 380 his insights on the national economy and his forecasts for the coming months.

According to Dougherty, although a soft landing appears on the horizon, economic growth is set to slow in the second half of 2024.

While economic growth has been strong, some sectors are strained due to high interest rates — namely manufacturing, freight and real estate. Service industries are thriving, as consumers have shifted from purchasing mainly goods during COVID-19 shutdowns to leaving the house and using services again.

“The overall economy is still growing at a strong rate (around 3%) driven by strong consumer spending and a strong labor market,” Dougherty said.

Since consumer spending accounts for two-thirds of the economy, strong spending usually equates to strong economic growth. However, auto and credit loan delinquency rates are increasing, signaling that while consumers continue to spend, they are having a harder time digesting the

higher interest rates.

The strong labor market also drives high consumer spending, but the labor market has started to downshift.

April 2024 marked the first month since November to dip below 200,000 jobs added in the U.S.

While this may seem like a negative, balance in the labor market is one of the markers that the Federal Reserve looks for when determining the right time to drop interest rates. This is due to firms passing high employment costs on to the consumer, causing price pressures.

Dougherty predicted we may see slight interest rate drops in September, December, and throughout 2025.

“Last year, the consensus in economic circles was we’d need a recession to bring inflation down. It has come down from 9% to 3-4%, and all without a deterioration in economic growth,” Dougherty said.

After the keynote, local economic experts Josh Wil-


general public resource for North County’s entertainment, dining and art studio scenes. Courtesy photo

of Carlsbad and Paul Yang and Devashree Buch of San Marcos from the University of the Cumberlands in Kentucky.


The following students were named to the dean’s list at their respective institutions: Adam Walker of Oceanside at Ohio Wesleyan

University; Shauna Trujillo of Oceanside at the University of the Cumberlands in Kentucky; and Noell Leone, Austin Mills and Yolanda Hill of Carlsbad, Angie Prado of Vista, and Trace Moreland, Robert Lesniak, Douglas Wantz, Brynn Savage and Chevon Baker of Oceanside at Southern New Hampshire University.


The following students were named to the president’s list at Southern New Hampshire University: Maxwell McDaris, James Crockett, Anna Nesterenko and Stephanie Barneburg of Carlsbad; Miriam Hughes, Anna Martin, Nicholas Goyen, Chad Billings, Olivia Stone, McKenzie Ath-

erton, Sarah Glauch, Lloyd Crabtree, Sophia Vieyra, Eva Barnhardt, Sean Imler, Jerome Cruz and Cassie Correnti of Oceanside; Hal Wilson and Jasmine Barnett of San Luis Rey; Jacqueline Uruchurtu, Daniel Morse, Keith Macaulay, Steven Epperson and Annamarie Holmes of San Marcos; Mechelle Head and

liams, founder of BW Research, and Gary London, senior principal of London Moeder Advisors, joined Dougherty to provide commentary specific to North County and answer questions from the audience.

One of the hot topics of discussion was the balance between job growth and housing development, with approximately nine jobs added for every two housing units added in North County over the last 10 years.

“Over the last five to seven years, North County has done a good job balancing quality of life and quality of economic opportunity, but a continual challenge has been providing housing for the workers that we need,” Williams said. “Innovation in decarbonization, AI, machine learning, and cybersecurity will be the drivers of the future. How do we find the balance to make sure that those companies can grow here while also protecting the quality of life in North County?”

Bransun Forgione of Vista; and Westin Erdman of Escondido.


Dr. Neelab Anwar and Dr. Cyrus Aghdam, a husband-and-wife, board-certified orthodontic team, purchased Baker Orthodontics in Escondido. Both orthodontists have donated over $60,000 in braces to kids in the Escondido and San Marcos communities who need help with costs through the Smiles Change Lives program.


The Walmart store at 1330 E. Grand Ave. in Escondido is undergoing a major remodel project that includes a newly renovated pharmacy with a new private consultation room, an expanded online pickup and delivery department, a new community-focused mural and newly renovated restrooms.


The North County Transit District has hired Alex Denis to serve as the agency’s chief procurement officer.

6 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N May 24, 2024
TERI CAMPUS of Life in San Marcos recently unveiled its new $15 million Walter J. & Betty C. Zable Foundation Performing Arts Fine Arts Center, designed to create new access to programming for the special needs community and a A RENDERING of the new Jesmond Dene playground structure. The park is one of 11 municipal playgrounds slated for upgrades. Courtesy photo HUNDREDS ATTEND the San Diego North Economic Development Council’s 11th annual North County Economic Summit on May 7. Courtesy photo

Museum of Making Music renovations hit right note

Phit the road

laying a giant keyboard with your feet isn’t as easy as it looks in that famous scene from “Big,” starring Tom Hanks.

When I try it at Carlsbad’s Museum of Making Music, I jump from key to key but get nothing. A volunteer explains that I have to strike hard with my heel. I follow this advice and bang out “Mary Had a Little Lamb” on the white keys.

(After five years of piano lessons, it is sad to say that my repertoire is quite limited.)

Still, this is a fun way to make music, and there are plenty of other opportunities to experiment with real instruments — guitars, pianos, harps, drums, chimes and some bizarre electronic things that will have kids and adults testing, exploring and playing.

The NAMM Foundation, a nonprofit organization that "celebrates and promotes the intrinsic value of music education," and the National Association of Music Merchants, a trade association for musical in-

strument manufacturers, jointly opened the museum in 2000.

The foundation, among other things, provides money for community programs and research on the lifetime benefits of playing musical instruments.

In April, the museum held a grand reopening to showcase its extensive renovations that have created more interactive spaces, learning galleries and historical presentations that exemplify the “many, many ways to learn about and enjoy music.”

“No other museum tells the story of the making, distribution and use of musical instruments in this way,” says marketing manager

B. J. Morgan. “We focus on the people, families, and businesses behind the instruments. Our hope is that people discover that there are many, many ways to be involved in making music and that they find their own place within this community. We want to make music as accessible as possible.”

The museum also hosts monthly concerts — jazz, rock and classical — in its 200-seat theater, which provides “an intimate musical experience.”

The Museum of Making Music is located at 5790 Armada Drive, Carlsbad, CA, 92008. For more information, visit, or call (760) 438-5996.

Board faults insurers for axing policies

By City News Service REGION — The county Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday opposing plans by State Farm and other major insurers to reduce homeowner policies in the state.

According to Vice Chair Terra Lawson-Remer’s office, State Farm on March 20 announced that it would drop coverage for existing policyholders, “leaving 72,000 homeowners and rental property owners scrambling to find alternatives.”

County officials said local affected communities include Rancho Santa Fe, Vista, Lakeside, El Cajon, Encinitas, Normal Heights, Tierrasanta, Jamul, Ramona and Carmel Valley.

The county resolution formally opposes State Farm and other large insurance companies’ decision “to abandon homeowners, renters and small business owners” and calls on them to work “together with the state insurance commissioner in modernizing the insurance marketplace to ensure long-term availability, affordability, and sustainability of coverage,” according to Lawson-Remer.

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PETER HARRINGTON, 10, jumps on a giant keyboard at the Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad. Courtesy photo A YOUNG boy, top, plays an electronic drumset at the Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad. Above, siblings Peter and Molly Harrington, ages 10 and 6, respectively, explore the sounds of various instruments and technical equipment at the newly renovated museum, a program of the National Association of Music Merchants. Courtesy photos e’louise ondash

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Players, coaches hit restart after USK pulls plug

— On a Thursday evening in late April, the University of Saint Katherine men’s basketball team gathered at the USK Sports Complex on Los Vallecitos Boulevard for a fourth straight night of open runs.

In the middle of a pickup game, an injured player watching from the sideline raised his voice to get the court’s attention.

“Ayo, come here,” he said in an elevated tone, bringing awareness to the phone in his hand.

“This energy made us stop play,” said Jadon Amiot, a five-foot-seven redshirt guard in his first year at USK. “We immediately realized something was wrong.”

An email from the USK administration brought the gym to a halt.

“I started reading it, and it looked like one of those fake spam emails you get,” Amiot said. “It was so unreal.”

As explained in the email, the university, which opened in 2010, will close immediately and cease all operations because of financial instability, as reported by The Coast News. In a notice of termination email to staff, USK founder and president Frank Papatheofanis said the school would be “ceasing all employment” as it “can no longer meet its financial obligations because of a steep shortfall in operating cash” and is filing for bankruptcy.

The sense of shock permeating the gym broke when the team noticed head coach Kevin Williamson through a window.

“He was scratching his head, and we were making jokes because he really doesn’t have that much hair,” Amiot said with a laugh. “We were like, ‘Man, if he is touching his head, this must be real.’”

In the locker room, which was described as deafeningly silent, Williamson confirmed to the team

the realness of the situation and that he, too, had been notified of his employment termination.

At that same time, elsewhere in San Marcos, USK head baseball coach Cameron Johnson had just arrived home, intending to spend time with his wife and four children over a peaceful dinner.

Johnson ignored the first few calls coming into his cellphone.

But they didn’t stop.

“‘Why is this kid calling me right now?’ Johnson

wondered when he saw the number of Christos Tountas, an undergraduate assistant with the team.

“He was like, ‘Hey, did you get the email?’” Johnson remembered. “I pulled up the email on my phone and saw the community-wide announcement about the termination of the school –that’s how I found out.”

That evening, similar situations played out over and over for the nearly 300 students enrolled at USK and the faculty employed by the university.

“It’s an overwhelming situation,” sophomore Arion Neill, a catcher on the softball team, said. “It leaves a lot of us completely lost.”

In the weeks since, students — nearly all of whom were involved in the athletic program — have struggled with the feeling of being blindsided by the announcement and the daunting challenge of finding new teams at new schools for the upcoming fall semester on extremely short notice.

“This was the worst way the school could have gone

about [telling us],” Neill said. “A mass email at a random time on a random Thursday before finals — this isn’t how I think it should have been handled.”

“I had the ‘feel sorry for me’ mentality,” Amiot added. “I saw people breaking down; I saw people in denial; humor was a big one. The first three days, I couldn’t think straight, I didn’t have the same diction when I talked. Now, it’s acceptance. We are all athletes; we need to find somewhere else to play.”

For Devin Padua, a graduating senior outfielder in his sixth year of college, this season would always be his final in cleats, but with his senior project scuttered after months of work, there is a sense of incompletion.

“Most of the seniors had a senior project that we had been working on for the whole year,” Padua said. “That was completely canceled, too. We did all this work and research just for it to be shut off.”

Padua, second on the baseball team in hits and batting average this past season, described his experience at USK as mostly positive, highlighting the small familial environment.

“I felt like everything was going smoothly,” he said. “It’s just shocking.”

Multiple USK students share that positive sentiment, but now, with the ben-

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UNIVERSITY OF Saint Katherine student athletes Addison Alsbury, left, Chris Harper, center, and Arianna Rivas. Last month, a campuswide email notified staff and students that the school was ceasing operations immediately and filing for bankruptcy. “It’s an overwhelming situation,” said USK sophomore softball catcher Arion Neill. The Coast News graphic

76-year-old CSUSM grad: ‘I’ve wanted it for so long’

SAN MARCOS — Of the more than 4,000 students who graduated from Cal State San Marcos over the weekend, few had waited as long or were as excited as 76-year-old Kathryn Cook, the oldest member of the Class of 2024.

Cook, a San Carlos resident, completed the 16-month accelerated sociology program at CSUSM in early 2023 after completing an additional year and a half of MiraCosta College coursework.

The grandmother and avid volunteer said she always wanted to return to university for a bachelor’s but hadn’t had the chance to until now. She decided to pursue a degree for herself in honor of her late hus-

band, Ed, who passed away in 2019.

On May 17, her children and grandchildren came to watch her walk onstage at the commencement ceremony. Her graduation cap was decorated with roses, her husband’s favorite flower.

“I’m really excited. I feel like a kid,” Cook said. “It’s so important, because I’ve wanted it for so long.”

Decades before she would walk the stage at CSUSM, Cook began her secondary education in 1965 at Grossmont College’s dental assisting program. It’s also where she met Ed, whom she described as her “better half.

She worked in the dental field for 20 years until she and Ed had their children, at which point she took a step

back from full-time work to raise them while also working part-time painting houses. She later worked in a local school district in a variety of aide positions and at Sharp Healthcare, working her way up to the role of educator trainer.

Working two nights a week at the hospital and 30 hours in the school district, she fulfilled her passion for helping others.

“I absolutely loved it,” she said. “That’s one of the things that just thrills my heart — to be present, and to be where you’re meant to be, because you never know when you might change someone’s life.”



In 2007, she went back to school for her associate degree in communications at MiraCosta College, and she was looking forward to further schooling. However, Ed became sick around this time, and she committed herself to being his main caretaker after graduating in 2008.

After battling prostate cancer, seizures, open heart surgery, a stroke and diabetes that led to blindness in his left eye — with his wife there every step of the way — he passed away in 2019.

“He was the sweetest person. He had the kindest heart. He wanted to help people,” Cook said.

While losing her husband was difficult, it also made Cook examine what she wanted to do next and decide to pursue a four-

year university education. She enrolled in MiraCosta in 2021, where some of the professors also taught at CSUSM, and Cook decided to apply there to obtain a sociology degree.

“I was like, okay, I’ll give it a try. So I applied, and I was so excited when I received an acceptance email,” Cook said.

Because of her history of working and volunteering with the homeless and underprivileged children, sociology has always fascinated Cook, and she felt passionate about helping people in need, such as women affected by domestic violence.

Cook said she loved her classes in the online accelerated program, which covered topics from family and intimate relationships to race, gender and equality. She said she was the oldest in her cohort and enjoyed getting to know people from many different walks of life, including folks who were married or had kids or others who wanted to pick up a second degree.

“Even though we’re all online, we get to know one another,” Cook said.

One of the friends she made in class was 50 years her junior, and they were finally able to meet in person

at the graduation ceremony.

Now that she has graduated, Cook said she is already considering getting another bachelor’s and maybe even a master’s in social work. For now, though, she is trying to enjoy the moment and focus on giving back wherever possible.

“The thing that’s next on my bucket list, I want to take a hot air balloon ride in Temecula. I haven’t been to Disneyland in a long time. I want to do more volunteering with the homeless. I want to just make my life count and do something that will hopefully make a difference,” Cook said.


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KATHRYN COOK, 76, of San Carlos, graduated with a bachelor’s in sociology from Cal State San Marcos on May 17 as the oldest member of the Class of 2024. Photo by Alicia Lores/CSUSM

for us in Escondido.”

“From my perspective, they’re impossible to even come close to, but I appreciate the staff's diligent work in keeping us abreast of what’s going on, where we’re at, and how poorly we’re doing as far as the RHNA people are concerned,” Morasco said.

Councilmember Consuelo Martinez asked staff for an ADU update and expressed interest in streamlining the ADU construction process for property owners in the city given their impact on the city’s Housing Element progress so far.

“They’re definitely beginning to impact our

efit of hindsight, some wonder if they missed red flags.

“This came as a surprise to literally everyone,” a member of the USK women’s basketball team told The Coast News on the condition of anonymity. “The email felt insincere and cowardly, and how much this would impact our lives wasn’t taken into account. The experience at USK was positive, but it was a sketchy process, as our bills and payments were all through Venmo, which isn’t typical. We got used to it, but we

there’s a lag time on ordering those cameras,” Bender said.

License plate readers have been used for years by the police departments in multiple cities, including Carlsbad, Oceanside and Escondido, and by the Sheriff’s Department in their contract cities of Del Mar, Solana Beach, and Encinitas.

Last week, the Encinitas City Council agreed to more than triple the number of license readers in the city with 17 new cameras in addition to the seven cameras installed in 2022.

In San Marcos, several residents, including members of the San Elijo Hills Community Association board, spoke in favor of the LPRs.

“So many of the other neighboring communities in North County are already using this technology,” said association president Lindsay Smith. “I would hate to see San Marcos be the lagger in this situation, because it makes us the target.”

“I know it’s not foolproof, it’s not going to get rid of everything, but it would be an amazing peace of mind for members of our community,” said San Elijo resident and community association board member Melissa Bustarde.

Lawrence said the Flock camera stores data for 30 days before deleting it. Data can only be held longer if it is related to a current criminal investigation.

Other departments in neighboring cities would not have access to San Marcos camera footage, although

requirements,” said Councilmember Joe Garcia, who served on the Planning Commission when the city’s ADU ordinance was approved.

The city will also submit its Housing Element progress report to the county and state.


The city could lose annual funding from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development in the future if it continues to fail requirements dictating how much money is allocated to projects and how much is left over in reserves.

Each year, Escondido receives Community Development Block Grant and

were taken aback by it.”

According to Papatheofansis, in an email to The Coast News, the option to pay via Venmo was “added by student request.”

Still, there were other instances.

“It was really confusing figuring out how to pay,” Amiot said. “On top of that, I had a professor who didn’t show up for three weeks, didn’t email us and then came back on the last day of the semester, gave us a final and that counted towards our grades. How does a teacher not show up for weeks and then give us real grades?”

the Sheriff’s Station could share information acquired through the cameras, such as a vehicle’s plate number in an Amber Alert, with other agencies.

Data also cannot be shared with the federal government or agencies outside of California.

Safe Cities program

Along with LPRs, the San Marcos council also approved an initiative called the Safe San Marcos Program, allowing local residents and businesses to share the data from their own security cameras, such as Ring cameras, with the Sheriff’s Department.

According to Lawrence, this can be done in two ways. First, residents or businesses can register their own security cameras with the department so that law enforcement can request footage if there is a crime in the area.

“It essentially places the location of their camera on a Google overlay map, so our investigators are able to go in after the fact of a crime, open up the software, see where cameras are in proximity to where the actual crime occurred, and reach out to the individuals who own and operate those cameras,” Lawrence said.

The second option is for residents, businesses and other entities, such as schools, to grant the department access to a live stream of their security camera footage. This would allow greater efficiency and situational awareness in law enforcement responses.

In both options, the department would only accept cameras facing public

HOME Investment Partnership funds from HUD.

For cities nationwide that receive HUD funding, the overarching goals are to benefit low- and moderateincome households, prevent or eliminate slums or blight, and address urgent community needs.

Escondido expects to receive approximately $1.4 million in CDBG entitlement funds and $700,000 in HOME entitlement funds.

In return for the funding, HUD requires cities to complete projects using the provided funds in a timely manner. Cities cannot have more than 1.5 times its annual allocation by May of each year.

Known as a “timeliness test,” the city has had diffi-

“I didn’t connect the dots until after, which sucks,” Neill said. “A few days before the school shut down, they said they would raise tuition, which felt odd. And for fundraising, the softball coach would only accept cash.”

With students scrambling to find new homes, the level of support from USK coaches and administrators for those transferring has varied from individual to individual.

“It’s been frustrating,” said Neill. “My coaches have reached out to certain people about finding connections, but I haven’t been

streets or parking lots, according to Lawrence. Participation in the program is entirely voluntary, and in other cities with the program, such as Poway and Santee, hundreds of residents have signed up.

Council members said this would be a great option to give to residents.

Dawn Michele Mack-Adams Oceanside May 5, 2024

Richard Visciglio Oceanside May 3, 2024

culty passing the test since 2020. HUD waived the test in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but those exceptions are no longer in place.

“This is the third year in a row that the city has not met this requirement,” said Housing and Neighborhood Services Manager Danielle Lopez at the May 8 council meeting. “We’re just missing it, but we’ve been at that threshold for the last three years.”

According to Lopez, staff have met with HUD and do not expect the city’s funding to be cut this year; however, HUD will likely reprimand the city through a formal meeting or by cutting CDBG and HOME funding next year if the city fails to fix things this year.

reached out to – I’m on my own. It’s an isolating feeling and I know other teammates haven’t been reached out to as well.”

“The professors have been really accommodating about letters of recommendation,” added the women’s basketball player. “The coaches have all been reaching out day-and-night, asking, ‘Do you want to go here?’ I feel like I do have a very good support system.”

With the initial shock behind him, Amiot is now looking at the positives of his own situation.

“I’m the guy who weaseled his way into every

“I really like the program. As I’ve said, safety has always been the highest priority, and giving you all the tools to do your job,” said Mayor Rebecca Jones. “I think it does take a village. It takes a village; we all have our part in it, and sharing the cameras, I think, is a big deal. It definitely does work.”

“If we do not rectify the situation this fiscal year, we would likely face cuts to our 2025-2026 funding,” Lopez said.

According to Lopez, several challenges are behind the city’s untimeliness of spending, including staff turnover and vacancies in the Neighborhood Services Division – particularly in the CDBG area — influx of one-time COVID relief dollars and American Rescue Plan Act funding, and only partially funding projects over several years.

Still, Lopez said staff has made progress by completely funding two major upcoming projects: installing, replacing and upgrading street and walkway lights within the Old Escondido neighbor-

level of basketball,” Amiot said. “Coaches in California aren’t looking for anyone under six-foot. My former coach is now at South Dakota Wesleyan and he’s been in touch with me. Two other colleges also reached out. This might put me in a better position than I was in.”

Johnson finally realized his lifelong dream of coaching college baseball last February after serving as a police officer in Texas for 10 years.

hood, which will cost approximately $1.02 million; and the replacement and installation of new playground equipment at three existing parks for a total of $775,000. The equipment alone will cost the city approximately $521,000.

The city is also only just below the threshold. Once those two projects are completed, the city will pass its timeliness test.

The city has also accomplished hiring one CDBG and one HOME program management analyst and has already offered the remaining two vacancies to candidates.

Neighborhood Services expected to be fully staffed by mid-May, which could help the city meet its timeliness test in the future.

Stephen Joseph Kalafut Oceanside April 29, 2024

Ramon Benito Estevez Oceanside April 26, 2024

Submission Process

Please email or call (760) 436-9737. All photo attachments should be sent in jpeg format, no larger than 3MB. the photo will print 1.625” wide by 1.5” tall inh black and white.


Obituaries should be received and approved before Friday at 12 p.m. for publication in the next week Friday’s newspaper.


Text: $15 per inch Approx. 21 words per column inch


Photo: $25 Art: $15 (Dove, Heart, Flag, Rose)

A third element of the Safe San Marcos Program is the placement of overt cameras in public areas to further deter crime. Cities can record and temporarily store footage or have a live stream.

The council supported the concept and opted to allow recording.

While he understands the frustration students and faculty are feeling, he doesn’t want the negativity to be the only memory from the school’s final run.

“I understand there is a sour taste,” Johnson said. “But there was so much positive with the 10 head coaches USK had. Every coach put in extra time and several of us put in our own money with our programs to try and give those kids a college experience the best we could.”

Losing the income that he relied on to support his large family has been stressful, but Johnson is optimistic about his future, lining up a summer coaching job with an affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers in Wisconsin.

Residents or businesses interested in participating in the Safe San Marcos Program can contact the Sheriff’s Licensing Department at (858) 974-2020. The San Marcos Sheriff’s Station will also be conducting outreach to residents about the program and the option to register their cameras.

Ahhh, another three - day weekend; time for a family BBQ or a quick get - away. But, while we re all busy having fun, it is important to remember the true meaning of this holiday.

It is a day for remembering the men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Formerly known as Decoration Day, this holiday originated after the American Civil War to honor soldiers from both sides. By the 20th century, Memor ial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military

Plan your weekend of fun but please be sure to take

those who gave their lives for our country so we can enjoy the freedoms to celebrate this weekend.

May 24, 2024 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N 11
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MAY 24


Learn new things, meet new people. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at CSUSM is happy to be offering classes in person and classes online via ZOOM for adults ages 50 and better. May 4 - June 28. For more information or assistance, please contact or (760)750-4020, option 2 for Osher. CSUSM Extended Learning Building, 288 Campus Way, San Marcos.


Experience the allure of Havana with food, cocktails and rolled cigars to the rhythms of Latin band Fercho. The trio’s high-energy is nearly irresistible with Latin pop beats and salsa dancers who encourage ever. $20, 6-10 p.m. May 24 at Fairmont Grand Del Mar, 5300 Grand del Mar Ct, San Diego.


Catch Calab Synan (Comedy Central, NBC’s Last Comic Standing and Conan) and Friends for a night filled with laughter. $17, 6:30 p.m. at Grand Comedy Club, 340 E Grand Ave, Escondido.


Legoland California Resort will launch North America’s first-ever LEGO World Parade. Admission included with tickets and passes. Parade dates are May 24-27 and 31; June 1-3, 7-30; daily in July; Aug. 1-11, 16-18, 24-25 and 31; and Sept. 1-2 at Legoland California, 1 Legoland Dr, Carlsbad.


At 94, Lola Jones still looked dressed for Nordstroms when she was headed for the porch, Dementia had her deluded enough to think she was staying at a high end hotel. 4 p.m. at Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theatre, 2130 Pan American Plz, San Diego.


Don Bartletti has focused his camera on the border throughout his journalism career. Free, $10 for Bartletti’s talk. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Photographer’s Eye Gallery, 326 E Grand Ave, Escondido.

MAY 25


MiraCosta College and the Cardiff Farmer’s Market are offering a free, regulation-friendly yoga class that is open to all ages and is limited to 25 participants. 11 a.m. at Cardiff Farmer’s Market, 3333 Manchester Ave, Cardiff by the Sea.


Come meet the artists at an outdoor art show ev-

ery Saturday and Sunday. Free, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 25 at Carlsbad Inn Outdoor Art Venue, 3075 Carlsbad Blvd, Carlsbad.


Fairmont Grand Del Mar, the award-winning resort located in the coastal canyons of San Diego, is thrilled to bring Grand Cinema Under the Stars presented by Fatboy. Free-$20, 8 p.m. at Fairmont Grand Del Mar, 5300 Grand del Mar Ct, San Diego.


An Oceanside Museum of Art exhibit that features the works of César Miguel Rivera Vega Magallón and Alexa Vasquez, delving into the experiences of undocumented queer immigrants. Exhibition on display from May 25 to Oct. 6 at Oceanside Museum of Art, 704 Pier View Way, Oceanside.


Join Music Makers San Diego House Concerts for an intimate evening of live music with Jeff Berkley and StuckyLeigh. The concert will take place at a home in Harmony Grove Village in Escondido. The exact location will be provided via email upon purchasing a ticket. $20, 6-9 p.m. at Private Home, 92029, Escondido.

MAY 26


Wear strawberry-themed outfits to attend Vista’s signature event, featuring contests, kids play zone, entertainment, art, film festival, vendors and, of course, strawberries. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. May 26 at Downtown Vista, CA, Main St, Vista.


“Classical Gems” will feature noted pianist Dr.

Ching-Ming Chen as guest soloist. $15-$35, 4-6 p.m. at Poway Center for the Performing Arts, 15498 Espola Rd, Poway.


Jazz Evensong will feature a blend of Anglican prayer and American jazz. Music begins at 4 p.m. followed by church service at 4:30 p.m. Free and open to the public. 4 p.m. at St. Michael’s-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, 2775 Carlsbad Blvd, Carlsbad.

MAY 27


Join instructor Helen Shafer Garcia as inspiration and process will guide you to explore watercolor techniques in a relaxed and fun atmosphere. $130, 1 to 4 p.m. May 27 at Fallbrook School of the Arts, 310 E Alvarado St, Fallbrook.

MAY 28


Carlsbad Republican Women will host two local Republicans, Dan McAllister, San Diego County Treasurer-Tax Collector, and Aaron Byzak, candidate for Tri-City Healthcare District. $39-$44, 11 a.m. at Holiday Inn, 2725 Palomar Airport Rd, Carlsbad.

MAY 29


Chili Cook-off and Veterans Association of North County Fundraiser, aiming to bring the San Diego community together for a day of culinary delight and to raise funds for the support of local veterans. $20$25, 5-10 p.m. May 29 at Belly Up, 143 S Cedros Ave, Solana Beach.


Introducing advanced

Mar Ct, San Diego.


This presentation will discuss the sorry state of the U.S. food and drug marketplace in the 19th century, USDA Chief Chemist Harvey Wiley and others efforts. Free, 1 p.m. at MiraCosta College, 1 Barnard Dr, Oceanside.


Please submit only abstract artwork, (no AI permitted) and review the prospectus before entering, If it is not abstract please do not submit for this show. The last day to submit is May 31. Show runs from June 1 to July 7 at North Coastal Art Gallery, 300 Carlsbad Village Dr, Carlsbad.


therapies for relieving Neuropathies, numbness, pain, using Stem Cells, Class IV laser, platelet rich plasma and diet. Free, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. May 29 at Leucadia Chiropractic Regen+Med clinic, 1351 Encinitas Blvd, Encinitas.


Prepare for an evening of enchantment in “Camelot,” brilliantly adapted for intimate theatres by Lerner & Loewe. This Tony Award-winning fairy-tale musical resounds with such memorable songs as, “I Loved You Once in Silence,” “If Ever I Would Leave You,” and the title song, “Camelot.” $54, May 29-June 23 at North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Dr, Solana Beach.


Comedian James P. Connolly has appeared on Netflix, America’s Got Talent, Dry Bar Comedy, and can be heard daily on SiriusXM Comedy. $20, 7:30 p.m. at The Brooks Theatre, 217 N Coast Hwy, Oceanside.

MAY 31


Mariachi Garibaldi de Jaime Cuéllar has truly become America’s Mariachi!. Free-$30, 7 to 9 p.m. May 31 at California Center for the Arts, Escondido, Black Box Theatre - Studio 1, 340 N Escondido Blvd, Escondido.


Gilbert Castellanos and the New Latin Jazz Sextet ignite the stage at Grand Social with their Latin jazz tunes that transport guests to the heart of Latin America. General admission is free. 6 to 9 p.m. May 31 at Fairmont Grand Del Mar, 5300 Grand del

Community Connections present a workshop series that assists aspiring writers how to better tell their own stories. $20, 1:30-3:30 p.m. at Lomas Santa Fe Plaza, 931 Lomas Santa Fe Dr, Solana Beach.

PRIDE BY THE BEACH Pride By The Beach is a free and family-friendly pride festival in the heart of Oceanside—food, Music, and entertainment. Free, 12 to 6 p.m. June 1 at Oceanside Civic Center, 300 N Coast Hwy, Oceanside.


The eagerly awaited North Park Music Festival returns for its third season, promising an electrifying celebration of music and culture. Free, 4 to 10 p.m. May 31 at North Park Mini Park, 3812 29th St, San Diego.


Comedian Steve Furey, as seen on E! Network and Bert Kreischer’s Tour, performs with openers Leo Flowers and Ellen Sugarman. $17, 6:30 p.m. at Grand Comedy Club, 340 E Grand Ave, Escondido.


CAYS Community Alliance for Youth Success and the National Assistance League are producing an all-day professional Youth Success Conference for Oceanside High School’s 1,800 students. May 31 at Oceanside High School, 1 Pirates Cove Way, Oceanside.


Join us onsite for Fun Animal Friday with Happy Heart Haven on Friday, May 31, 10 to 11:30 a.m. San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum, 320 N Broadway, Escondido.



The Encinitas Guitar Orchestra, under the direction of Peter Pupping, takes center stage for “A Latin Tinge,” featuring a fusion of Spanish and Latin guitar music. 7:30 p.m. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 925 Balour Dr, Encinitas.


The Killer Dueling Pianos will take the stage for Lakehouse Resort’s final show of the Live at the Lake concert series. $25-$120, 4-8 p.m. June 1 at Lakehouse Hotel & Resort, 1105 La Bonita Dr, San Marcos.


The Solana Beach

The Friends of the Oceanside Public Library invite the public to bring their books to the sorting facility as an opportunity to declutter their home and help support the library. Free, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 1 at Oceanside Library Sorting Facility, 169 Roymar Rd, Oceanside.

‘CHANGE YOUR AURA’ Join us in the celebration of the 25th anniversary edition of the international bestseller, “Change your aura, change your life” by authors and spiritual teachers Barbara Y. Martin & Dimitri Moraitis $75, 1-4 p.m. June 1 at Spiritual Arts Institute, 527 Encinitas Blvd, Encinitas.


London born Gregory Page is an eclectic, prolific, genre-bending performing songwriter, balladeer, recording artist, film maker, art activist, music producer and published poet. $25, 8 p.m. at The Bornemann Theatre on TERI Campus of Life, 555 Deer Springs Rd, San Marcos.



Four time recipient of the San Diego Music Awards “Best Blues” award Robin Henkel performs solo and with his band the Robin Henkel Band with Horns. Free, 2-3 p.m. at Encinitas Library, 540 Cornish Dr, Encinitas.


Join our monthly fellowship as we share metaphysical insights from the Divine on a variety of topics and current affairs. $20, 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at Spiritual Arts Institute, 527 Encinitas Blvd, Encinitas.



Following its premiere during North Coast Repertory Theatre’s acclaimed streaming productions in 2021, we are thrilled to welcome back “Dr. Glas” live. $42, June 3-4 at 7 p.m. and June 4 at 2 p.m. at North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Dr, Solana Beach.

May 24, 2024 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N 13
Know something that’s going on? To post an event, visit us online at
THE VISTA Strawberry Festival returns downtown from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 26 to celebrate all things strawberry, including fresh strawberries, food vendors, entertainment, art, film festival, kids zone and the Strawberry Run 5K. Photo by Karli Cadel/Vista Strawberry Festival

FROM KING FEATURES WEEKLY SERVICE, 628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL 32803

CUSTOMER SERVICE: 800-708-7311 EXT. 257

TRIVIA TEST #12345_20240520 FOR RELEASE MAY 20, 2024

FROM KING FEATURES WEEKLY SERVICE, 628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL 32803

CUSTOMER SERVICE: 800-708-7311 EXT. 257

TRIVIA TEST #12345_20240520 FOR RELEASE MAY 20, 2024

1. ANATOMY: What does the human vestibular sense do?

1. ANATOMY: What does the human vestibular sense do?

2. MOVIES: The phrase “As you wish” is key to which 1987 movie?

3. GEOGRAPHY: What is the largest island in the Caribbean?

2. MOVIES: The phrase “As you wish” is key to which 1987 movie?

1. ANATOMY: What does the human vestibular sense do?

2. MOVIES: The phrase “As you wish” is key to which 1987 movie?

3. GEOGRAPHY: What is the largest island in the Caribbean?

4. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What are Chinese astronauts called sometimes in the West?

5. TELEVISION: Which sitcom features a character named Phoebe Buffay?

6. MEASUREMENTS: What is the square footage of an acre?

7. SCIENCE: What are the four states of matter?

8. HISTORY: Which amendment to the U.S. Constitution gave women the right to vote?

9. LITERATURE: Which 19th-century novel contains the line, “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship”?

10. MONEY: In the old British monetary system, how many pennies were equal to a pound?


4. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What are Chinese astronauts called sometimes in the West?

3. GEOGRAPHY: What is the largest island in the Caribbean?

5. TELEVISION: Which sitcom features a character named Phoebe Buffay?

4. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What are Chinese astronauts called sometimes in the West?

6. MEASUREMENTS: What is the square footage of an acre?

7. SCIENCE: What are the four states of matter?

5. TELEVISION: Which sitcom features a character named Phoebe Buffay?

1. It is the sense that deals with movement, gravity and balance.

2. “The Princess Bride.”

3. Cuba.

4. Taikonauts.

5. “Friends.”

6. 43,560 square feet.

7. Solid, liquid, gas and plasma 8. 19th.

6. MEASUREMENTS: What is the square footage of an acre?

8. HISTORY: Which amendment to the U.S. Constitution gave women the right to vote? 9. LITERATURE: Which 19th-century novel contains the line, “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to

7. SCIENCE: What are the four states of matter?

8. HISTORY: Which amendment to the U.S. Constitution gave women the right to vote?

the sense that deals with movement, gravity and balance.

9. LITERATURE: Which 19th-century novel contains the line, “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship”?

10. MONEY: In the old British monetary system, how many pennies were equal to a pound?


1. It is the sense that deals with movement, gravity and balance.

2. “The Princess Bride.”

3. Cuba.

4. Taikonauts.

5. “Friends.”

6. 43,560 square feet.

7. Solid, liquid, gas and plasma

8. 19th.

9. “Little Women.”

10. 240.

© 2024 King Features Synd., Inc.

9. “Little Women.” 10. 240. © 2024 King Features Synd., Inc.

14 T he C oas T N ews - I N la N d e d ITI o N May 24, 2024
6. 43,560
feet. 7. Solid, liquid, gas and plasma 8. 19th. 9. “Little Women.” 10. 240. © 2024 King Features Synd., Inc. FROM KING FEATURES WEEKLY SERVICE, 628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL 32803 CUSTOMER SERVICE: 800-708-7311 EXT. 257 TRIVIA TEST
FOR RELEASE MAY 20, 2024 By Fifi Rodriguez 1. ANATOMY: What does the human vestibular sense do? 2. MOVIES: The phrase “As you wish” is key to which 1987 movie? 3. GEOGRAPHY: What is the -larg est island in the Caribbean? 4. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What are Chinese astronauts called sometimes in the West? 5. TELEVISION: Which sitcom -fea tures a character named Phoebe -Buf fay? 6. MEASUREMENTS: What is the square footage of an acre? 7. SCIENCE: What are the four states of matter? 8. HISTORY: Which amendment to the U.S. Constitution gave women the right to vote? 9. LITERATURE: Which -19th-cen tury novel contains the line, “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship”? 10. MONEY: In the old British -mon etary system, how many pennies were equal to a pound? Answers 1. It is the sense that deals with movement, gravity and balance. 2.
Princess Bride.” 3. Cuba. 4. Taikonauts. 5.
6. 43,560 square feet. 7.
liquid, gas and plasma 8.
© 2024
sail my ship”?
MONEY: In the old British monetary system, how many pennies were equal to a pound? Answers 1. It is
“The Princess Bride.”
“Little Women.”
King Features Synd., Inc.

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Caring teachers to address students’ individual needs

School isn’t one size fits all. Sometimes a student needs something just a little different in order to succeed. That’s where Pivot Charter School San Diego shines — they customize education to meet each student's individual needs. The free public charter school serving grades K-12 leverages a 100% online curriculum in combination with a resource center in San Marcos where students can receive hands-on support from teachers, engage in electives and in-person activities, and connect with other students in a small setting.

Pivot's unique model pairs each student with a dedicated teacher to offer personalized support and flexibility, empowering them to master their learning and accelerate their path to graduation. Whether a student needs extra help to get back on track, seeks to work ahead of the pace of traditional educational environments or prefers to work on an alternative schedule, Pivot provides the environment for every student to succeed.

“At Pivot, we recognize that the path to educational success looks different for each student,” said San Diego Site Coordinator Adrian Heredia. “We take pride in transforming students’

Summer Fun & Learning

experiences in education by listening, adapting and supporting them through whatever challenges they may face.”

Students at Pivot have the option to choose a learning model that best suits their needs and preferences. They can fully engage in remote learning from the comfort of their homes or visit the resource center for additional support and faceto-face interactions. This flexibility ensures that each student can thrive in an environment tailored to their individual learning style and circumstances.

This model inspires independent thinking and equips students for the future, motivating them to embrace their full potential and step confidently into their next chapter.

“At Pivot, we celebrate the individuality of each student,” said San Diego Site Administrator Gail Gonzalez Coloyan. “Through personalized support and strong student-teacher relationships, we lay the foundation for long-term academic and personal triumph.”

In addition to a robust K-12 curriculum, Pivot offers high school students the opportunity to engage in college-level learning and career technical education courses. The school partners with institutions like

Palomar College and Santa Rosa Junior College, allowing students to earn college credits while completing their high school education.

Pivot Charter School San Diego is currently enrolling grades K-12 for the 2024-2025 school year. Learn more about Pivot San Diego by reaching out directly to Pivot’s site coordinator Adrian Heredia at or (760) 591-0217 to begin the enrollment process or schedule a visit to Pivot San Diego’s resource center, located at 1030 La Bonita Dr., Suite 100, San Marcos, CA 92078.

About Pivot San Diego

Pivot San Diego is a Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accredited charter public school serving students K-12 in San Diego, Orange, Riverside, and Imperial counties. At Pivot, we work hard every day so that our students struggle less and learn more. Pivot’s custom curriculum and collaborative resources define success, develop confidence, and change lives. Like students who find new opportunities here, we are focused yet flexible–with caring teachers who address students’ individual needs and cultivate academic independence in a safe environment.


Vocal Engineering Camp & Rock Band

Attention all aspiring musicians! Unleash your musical potential with Leading Note Studios’ dynamic music program.

Voted the best place for summer camps 2023, our Rock Band Camp lets you rock out with friends while learning improvisation and composition. No prior music knowledge is required. Whether a drummer, guitarist or any other musician, you’re welcome! Join us for an unforgettable experience to hone your talents and

rock the stage like never before.

Calling all aspiring music engineers and vocalists!

Dive into creativity at our Music Engineering and Vocal Camp. In Engineering Camp, amplify your skills with Pro Tools and studio equipment. In Vocal Camp, perfect harmonies and record in a professional studio.

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Leading Note Studios offer a variety of Summer Music Camps including Intro to Music, Rock Band Camp, Musical Theatre, Engineering and more.

“I would teach children music, physics and philosophy: but most importantly music; for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.” - Plato

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