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also inside


november 2009



Local Fun and Dining with

Friends and Family Wine Tasting Among Friends

Affordable Family Dining Food and Drink Activities PRE-SORT STD U.S. POSTAGE PAID PERMIT #95 92056


Hot Soup for You

business hiGhliGht: MY GYM EASTLAKE | resident sPotliGht: THE SunDAHL FAMILY


november 2009




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FROM THE EDITOR... The holidays have arrived. I’m sure you’ve felt it. In our house, the decorations have been pulled out of their boxes from the garage and now traditional seasonal trinkets and family treasures have regained their rightful place around the living room, family room and front yard. My kids, like many youngsters, were eager to alter the material state of our home as soon as Halloween appeared on the calendar and have easily made the transition to preparing for Thanksgiving. And next month, well, it will be back to the garage for the big boxes. Yes, the holidays are here. In this month’s My Hometown, we have taken a bit of a turn away from the expected. For november, our readers will find us not so much focused inward as anxious to spotlight the many ways to get out and enjoy our community. Family no doubt remains the focus of this time for many, but time off from work and school breaks for our kids, also represent wonderful opportunities to explore the finer aspects of our local area. We invite you to think about dining out, entertaining with friends and getting a jump on shopping. The incredibly talented chef Joe Busalacchi from Via Lago Trattoria highlights our feature section by sharing two of his family recipes for the enjoyment of My Hometown readers. Through years of running successful restaurants, Joe has amassed a collection of outstanding dishes. But the EastLake business owner returned to his family roots for these gems. Contributing writer Sarah Van Boerum has scoured the community to find ways that a family can dine out without a lot of expense. She shares her recommendations with all of us. We also detail a great way for friends to gather together to mix and mingle, while sharing ideas about what makes for a good-tasting wine. We also welcome a special advertising feature from the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce. Since the beginning, the staff and members of our city’s Chamber have been supportive of My Hometown.That support continues with a four-page ad spotlighting the organization’s efforts to encourage shopping, dining, staying and investing in Chula Vista. We hope you’ll consider doing just that this holiday season. With all we have here, who needs to go anywhere else? Happy Thanksgiving! Michael Minjares, Editor of My Hometown

noVeMber 2009



Local Dining Wine Tasting Among Friends


Affordable Family Dining


Food and Drink Activities


Hot Soup for You


Dine | Shop | Stay in Chula Vista


Special section brought to you by the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce

community news Gala and Golf Tourney to Benefit Local YMCA


community calendar 20

Local Events and Activities

resident spotlight 21

The Sundahl Family

on topic new Cancer Treatment Arrives in South Bay


school news CVESD Welcomes Program To Address Bullying


Eastlake High Robotics Expanding Its Outreach


Olympian High Senior Class Keeping Tradition Alive


business highlight My Gym Eastlake


november 2009 my hometown 3



To Betty Waznis on being selected as the Director of Library Services by the City of Chula Vista. For the past three years, Waznis held the title of Assistant Library Director at the San Diego County Library. She has 30 years of library experience. Waznis’s areas of expertise include strategic planning, budget, policy and human resources. City Manager Jim Sandoval said in a release, “Betty is an enthusiastic, well-liked leader who is looking forward to helping Chula Vista reach out to its library patrons and provide them with their needs in a fastchanging world.” To Jerome’s for the thousands of dollars worth of new furniture that was donated to the South Bay Family YMCA’s Goodrich Teen Center. A ribbon-cutting ceremony on October 3 helped to showcase the new furniture and kicked-off the center’s e-waste recycling event. To Dr. Mark Salt and Dora Veternski on being voted Gold Star Winners in the Star News Best of South County Poll. Dr. Salt was recognized for his chiropractic care and Veternski as a massage therapist. To Via Lago Trattoria for being voted Silver Star winners of best Happy Hour in the same Best of South County Poll. Congratulations to the staff at the EastLake fine eatery as well on their upcoming second anniversary.

Photo courtesy of: Lyndsey Marie Photography

Look what great things your community is up to...

To the winners of the Eastlake High School Art Competition at Pack and Bianes Vision Care: Kris Rocha (1st place), Nayli Ramirez (2nd place) and Monica Tello (3rd place). Patients, family, friends and visitors all voted on the exhibited pieces. Doctors John Pack and Beverly Bianes announced the winners at a special reception. To the Chula Vista Elementary School District on being chosen by the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports as a regional winner of the “District of the Year” awards program. The “Spotlight” award recognized CVESD for its leadership in the region covering San Diego and Imperial counties. According to district spokesperson Anthony Millican, the District’s Wellness Policy summarizes its strong commitment to students and community: “Chula Vista Elementary School District recognizes the link between student health and learning and is committed to providing a school environment that promotes student wellness, proper nutrition, nutrition education and regular physical activity for all District students.”

To the Van Boerum family on the arrival of a new baby girl. Grace Marie Van Boerum was born on October 3. Mom Sarah is a frequent contributor to My Hometown and even provided a story in this month’s issue despite giving birth to her new daughter. Congratulations!

If you would like to contribute to Bravo, send a quick note to My Hometown’s editor at and we’ll do our best to put your good-news announcement in an upcoming issue. Submissions should be sent by the 10th of the month.

Published by Fountain Media Group, Inc PO Box 2122, San Marcos, CA 92079 (800) 497-1309 x710

4 my hometown november 2009

Publishers Karen Smith

Editorial/Sales Mike Minjares

Tim Minjares

Copyright 2009. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any form, in whole or part, without written permission is prohibited. Fountain Media Group, Inc. is not responsible for the views of contributing writers and assumes no responsibility for errors appearing within. Opinions expressed are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the Publisher or advertisers.

on your doorstep Gala and Golf Tourney To Benefit Local YMCA

Eastlake High alumnus and current San Diego Padres All-Star Adrian Gonzalez has once again teamed up with local sportscaster Jim Stone to help our community. The two prominent San Diegans will be part of a special gala and golf tournament to benefit the South Bay Family YMCA. The “Suits and Sneakers Gala” will be held Friday evening, November 13 at the Sheraton Hotel and Marina, while the golf tournament takes place Monday, November 16 at the San Diego Country Club in Chula Vista. According to Tina Williams, South Bay Family YMCA’s Executive Director, the proceeds from these events will assist the YMCA in continuing to serve local families.

“These events are huge for the YMCA,” Williams said. “The funds we raise help us to keep our promise to not turn anyone away. Our community has been hit hard and the need has continued to rise. These events are critical to our success this year.” Rebecca Kelley, Community Relations Director at the local YMCA, said the popular community organization is grateful to both Gonzalez and Stone for their involvement. Each of them will be on hand at both events and have been very generous in helping to make these activities successful every year. Kelley added that the theme of the gala speaks to the YMCA’s attempt to make the event more affordable this year. At $100 a person, she hopes that many of the YMCA’s members will be able to attend and enjoy dinner, silent and live auctions, entertainment and the awards ceremony. “I’m really looking forward to seeing our members at the events this year,” she said. “Many of our members have donated items for the silent auction and are planning to attend with their families. We hope that they enjoy themselves and, along with everyone in attendance, also see how for 50 years our branch has done everything to serve the people in the South Bay to the best of our abilities.” To participate in the gala or golf tournament or make a donation, contact the South Bay Family YMCA at (619) 421-8805 or go online at

Adult Education Classes Available Nearby

“Remembering Our Heroes” Walk

Juan Diego Adult Education at Mater Dei Catholic High School offers free adult evening classes in ESL and GED. For a minimal fee, students can also register for Introduction to Computers or the Computer Programs class. Juan Diego Adult Education is located just west of Otay Ranch Town Center. For more information, contact Raquel Lopez at (619) 621-5711 or visit the

On November 7, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2111 Chula Vista hosts the 8th Annual “Remembering Our Heroes” 5K fun walk. Day of the walk registration starts at 7:30 a.m. at the California Veterans Home Chula Vista, 711 East Naples Court. The walk begins at 8:30 heading west to Hilltop Drive and ends at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2111, 299 I Street. Funds raised from this event will go to improve the quality of life for residents at the Veterans Home. Register on or before November 5 and the cost is $20 and includes a T-shirt and refreshments at the finish. More information can be found on the calendar page of the group’s website,

Steve Miesen (center) with Jim Stone and Adrian Gonzalez at last year’s tournament

Sharp Offering Free Community Flu Vaccination Clinic Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center will offer free flu vaccinations (no H1N1) and FluMist while supplies last at a free Community Flu Vaccination Clinic on Saturday, November 14. The clinic will be open from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at Sharp’s medical office building behind the main hospital at 765 Medical Center Court. Optional $2 donations are requested and will benefit the Sharp Chula Vista Auxiliary. More information can be found on or by calling (619) 502-5929. Registration is not required.

november 2009 my hometown 5

on your doorstep Get Involved! Get Published!


november 2009

My Hometown is always looking for contributors, articles and stories. It’s a great way to get more involved in your community. We welcome stories about neighborhood events, human interest and community building for all of our sections. hometown

You can contact us by calling (800) 497-1309 x710 with your idea or send us an email at

Moments by


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The 3rd Annual Santa Parade and Tree Lighting takes place at 6 p.m. on Saturday, November 21 at Otay Ranch Town Center. The event features a parade, live entertainment and tree lighting. Join family, friends and neighbors at this wonderful holiday celebration. For local residents, organizations or bands looking to participate in the festivities, applications are available on the shopping center’s website, Events, and are due by November 13. For more information, check out the website or call (619) 656-9100.

Family, Children, Newborn, Maternity, High School Seniors, Engagement, Weddings, and more...







6 my hometown november 2009

Junior Theatre Camp Offered During Thanksgiving Break San Diego Junior Theatre will hold a Thanksgiving Break Camp at Balboa Park from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day, November 23-25. For $90, campers will have the opportunity to participate in singing, dancing and acting classes and activities. The camp is for children in kindergarten through eighth grade, with no experience required. Space is limited to 125 students. Registration materials and more information can be found at or by calling (619) 239-1311.

Mathnasium kids get


and develop A


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$35 School Registration is FREE when you present this coupon at time of registration.

Offer applies to new students only. No cash value. Offer expires 12/09.


Now enrolling for the 2009-2010 program

Local Fun and Dining with

Friends and Family W

ith the holiday season fast approaching, the pace of life seems to quicken for many of us. There seems to be more and more items popping up on the to-do list and even less time to get through them all. But even though we have lost an hour of daylight, we will soon gain numerous opportunities for re-connecting with family, socializing with friends and spending quality time in our community. As you begin to think about how you will make the most of the time ahead, My Hometown presents several ideas for entertaining and increasing the enjoyment of fall events. Our goal with the articles contained in our feature section is to provide you with something that inspires you to enhance your quality of life – whether that’s a new recipe, an inviting community event, a suggestion for taking your family out for dinner or an interesting way of hosting a party for friends. We have also worked with our city’s Chamber of Commerce to offer information that we expect our readers will find of value, especially at this time of year. Cheers!

november 2009 my hometown 9

local fun & Dining

by Mike Minjares

A Wine Tasting


n a beautiful, warm summer evening earlier this year, my friends John and Mary held their annual wine-tasting party. Each year the event includes tasty food, good conversation and a wide-ranging selection of good and not-so-good wines. Since my wife and I don’t drink, we’ve attended the event in the past, but more for the socializing than to learn about different wines. This year, in the spirit of “participant journalism” we fully experienced it. It cost us, but it was well worth it. Guests began arriving at the Cajigas residence around six. Each person or couple brought a bottle or two of wine. Once all the guests had arrived, the wines were uncorked and stripped of

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10 my hometown november 2009

their labels by the host and some trusted friends. Each wine was assigned a number and placed in a brown bag with the corresponding number. Once the wines were set out, along with cheese, crackers and chocolate, guests made their way through the various stations, rating sheets in hand. In all, 30 bottles of wine were available for guests to blindly taste and rate from zero to four or “yuck” to “excellent.” “It’s a nice outdoor summer event, away from all the holiday activities,” John said about why he and his wife started hosting this activity for their friends. “We can get a lot of our friends together for a fun experience where everyone gets to catch up with people

local fun & Dining

Among Friends they don’t see that often, and maybe make some new friends, even some friends in glass bottles. What makes it especially great is every year it’s different because people bring different wines.” Otay Ranch residents Mark and Patty Caro agree that the opportunity to sample a variety of wines represents a highlight of the evening’s events. “It was good for me to get a chance to taste different kinds of wines,” Mark said. “I don’t drink wine very often. This event made me realize that some of the wines I buy are pretty bad. There are much better and smoother wines here.” Mark’s experience is one John hopes others share. He says there are three things he would like his guests to experience by coming to this wine-tasting event. First, he wants people to see that wine doesn’t need to be intimidating or snobby. Secondly, he’d like his friends to be able to find a wine that they could enjoy on a regular occasion like a favorite beer or soda. “The third aspect of this for me is having a great time with a bunch of friends enjoying the San Diego summer and a new beverage,” he said. As the evening moves along, I notice subtle, and in some cases, not-so-subtle attempts at influencing ratings begin to take place. But, without question, it is all done in good fun. Once everyone has had a chance to taste and rate the wines, rating sheets get turned in and the results calculated. Using a simple spreadsheet, John runs the numbers to determine individual rankings of each wine and the top and bottom finishers. While the SDSU accounting graduate works out the final figures, guests continue to enjoy dinner and conversation. What sets this wine-tasting event apart from others is not just the use of guests’ ratings to determine the most

and least popular wines. Nor does it succeed because guests bringing the top-rated wines receive certificates and the admiration of invited guests for their wine-selecting prowess. No, like John says, the attraction of this winetasting event is the competition to avoid being the “owner” of the wines in the bottom of the rankings. “Loser buys!” John said about what makes this party such a fun event. “Competition brings out the best in all of us, especially when you can do it anonymously. Even you don’t know which numbered wine you brought. We like to keep the wines reasonably

priced and dinner simple. But, whoever brought the wines rated in the bottom 20 percent picks up the dinner tab.” Finishing in the top three at this year’s event were The Prisoner 2007 (cost $32); Rancho Sisquoc Tre Vini 2006 ($30); and Blackstone Cabernet 2007 ($8). In no great surprise, the wines that my wife and I brought came in at the very bottom as well as third from the bottom, 28th and 30th place to be exact. At the end, we left our share of the dinner tab and walked away with an enhanced appreciation for good wine and the contentment of having enjoyed a great evening with friends. my.

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9/11/2009 3:13:40 PM

november 2009 my hometown 11

local fun & Dining by Sarah Van Boerum

Affordable Family Dining in CV As a busy mother to three young children, I am always on the lookout for a deal, especially when it comes to food. Like other parents out there, I do not always feel like cooking, but I do not want to spend a fortune to feed my family either. With the abundance of places to eat around our community, it seems like there is always a restaurant offering deals to families. And as more people choose to eat at home, more restaurants are offering familyfriendly menus at wallet-friendly prices. I have to admit that I do love eating out and here are just a few of my local favorites that keep me coming back with their free kids meals:

Romano’s Macaroni Grill, The Cheesecake Factory, Chili’s and California Pizza Kitchen (located in the Otay Ranch Town Center at 2015 Birch Road) all offer kids deals that won’t break the bank. These restaurants offer curbside pick-up making it easy to pick up your food and bring it right home. Romano’s Macaroni Grill and Cheesecake Factory offer larger quantities of food so you pay less, but get more! My Hometown readers can also find a special coupon for Romano’s Macaroni Grill in this issue of the magazine in the Mercado


The Shops At San Miguel Ranch


(2089 Olympic Pkwy) Offers “Milkshake Mondays” where you get a free order of chicken nuggets with the purchase of a milkshake and “Tuesday Family Night” where you can get a free kids meal with the purchase of a

(Intersection of Proctor Valley Road & Mt. Miguel Road) Kids eat free Wednesdays from 5pm-7pm. Restaurants include Figaro’s Pizza, Great Steak & Potato Co., Villa Capri Italian and Kyoto Sushi.

Little Caesar’s (728 Otay Lakes Road) & Domino’s Pizza (943 Otay Lakes Road) offer whole pizzas for

combo meal.

Islands (2255 Otay Lakes Road) Kids eat free on Tuesday nights.

IHOP (2258 Otay Lakes Road) Kids eat free every day of the week from 4pm-8pm.

Boston Market (770 Otay Lakes Road)

Pat & Oscars (872 Eastlake Parkway) Kids eat free on Tuesdays.

In addition, there are a few other local favorites that offer family-friendly deals and specials: Pick-Up Stix (2127 Olympic Pkwy) offers great

Get two free kids meals every day with

deals on a variety of menu items. If you sign up for their emails, you receive buy-

one adult purchase.

one get-one coupons throughout the year.

• Go to a restaurant’s website and sign up for their emails. They will almost always send you coupons and updates with their latest specials. • Do a web search for kids-eat-free meals and find local kids deals quickly.

• Some restaurants offer happy-hour specials that include full meals for half of the price during late afternoon and early evening hours. • Remember, at most restaurants you have to buy a meal in order to get the free kids meal.

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Based on experience, our family has found a couple of tips for securing a good deal:

• Check out your local paper, magazines and coupon mailers for more discounts, specials and coupons for restaurants all over our county.

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Don’t Miss the Twice Yearly Sale November 21 & 22

These are just a few of the local places and ways that our family enjoys a dinner out in our community, but the list could go on and on. Make sure that when choosing a restaurant for your family, you choose affordably and pick a place you and your family will enjoy. There is definitely no shortage of places to choose from in our community…Happy Eating!!! my.

local fun & Dining

Food and Drink Activities Around Town W

ith several great food and drink events lined up in November and a local restaurant breaking out loads of new menu items, now is the time to get out and enjoy fall in style. Whether you enjoy a good wine, a tasty brew or some familiar dishes done a new way, you’ll find no shortage of activities to satisfy your palate. The San Diego Bay Wine and Food Festival, billed as the largest wine and food festival in Southern California, returns on November 18-22. Now in its sixth year, the event features 170 world-class wineries and spirit producers, 70 San Diego fine-dining restaurants, celebrity chefs, wine dinners, cooking classes, wine tasting classes, live and silent auctions, personalities, wine tastings, and unlimited food samples. Throughout the week, various events around town provide participants the opportunity to increase their enjoyment of fine food and drink. A complete schedule and line up of activities can be found online at www.worldofwineevents. com or by calling (619) 342-7337. Local residents who can’t make it out to the festival, can still enjoy the opportunity to sample new wines. Winestyles in Otay Ranch Town Center offers wine tastings every Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6 to 8 p.m. With 100 to 125 world-class wines under $25, residents won’t need to break the family budget to take home a great tasting bottle of their favorite. To find out more, call Winestyles at (619) 397-5533 or visit them online at www. Based on a model successfully implemented in other major U.S. cities, the San Diego Brewer’s Guild welcomes the first San Diego Beer Week, November 6-15. The 10-day celebration will highlight San Diego’s thriving brewing culture. Home to more than 33 brew houses, our county is

becoming one of the top premier craft beer destinations in the country. According to Melody Daversa from Karl Strauss Brewing Company, in addition to promoting local craft beer, San Diego Beer Week will also be promoting the craft beer industry as a whole, with several prominent breweries from across the country participating in the festivities. Various San Diego bars, restaurants and hotels will be teaming up with local and regional craft breweries to host a wide variety of events, including beer and cheese tastings, “Meet The Brewers” nights, homebrewing classes and brewery tours. Beer Week kicks off with the San Diego Brewer’s Guild’s Beer Festival, where more than 80 beers brewed in San Diego County will be poured, and local restaurants will serve small bites to pair with select beers. A number of San Diego breweries will be producing special, one-

off releases for Beer Week. For more information on the many activities going on during San Diego Beer Week visit the event website at On the local front, Chili’s Otay Ranch has new menu items. According to General Manager Mike Brooks, the popular restaurant chain has launched an extensive new menu. The Otay Ranch Town Center restaurant is one of only three Chili’s locations to serve as a test location for the new items. The Otay Ranch location was hand selected from 1,300 restaurants and has been testing the new menu items for a couple of months. “The company thought this was a market that had to serve as a test for the new menu,” Brooks said. “It speaks to the loyalty of our guests and our overall guest satisfaction that we were selected.” Brooks says the highlights of the new menu include mini tacos, Santa Fe chicken wraps, new burgers, new sauces and a new slower cooking process for the restaurant’s famous ribs. So far, the response has been extremely positive. my.

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november 2009 my hometown 17

local fun & Dining

Hot Soup For You I

t’s that time of year…when the days become shorter, there’s a little chill in the air and pumpkins pop up on front porches. It reminds me of when I was a kid coming home from football practice and walking into our house. From the sidewalk you could see “steamed up” windows and you would immediately catch the aroma of something cooking in the kitchen. Inside, a large pot of soup would be simmering on the back burner under the watchful eye of my mom. There is nothing better to bring a family together at the dinner table than a pot of homemade soup. It’s also a great way to feed a large group or, in my case, a large family- as I’m one of seven children. Combined with a green salad, a crusty loaf of Italian bread, and a little vino for mom and dad – the entire family is set for a healthy culinary treat. Two of my family favorites have always been meatball soup and a zucchini soup called “Cuccuza.” This zucchini soup is a great way to get kids to enjoy a healthy vegetable. Most kids really like to eat anything with spaghetti in it. I know this was true with my three boys when they were young. We have featured both of these soups at our monthly cooking class at Busalacchi’s Via Lago Trattoria in EastLake. We always receive a lot of requests for these recipes. To celebrate the season, I thought they would be great to share with you. I hope your family enjoys them! And, if your schedule becomes too hectic to cook, I hope you’ll stop by on a cool fall evening and enjoy a bowl of soup and some dinner with us. Our restaurant windows will be a little “steamed up” as there is always a large pot of soup being cooked up under this chef ’s watchful eye. my.

Pasta with Zucchini - “Cucuzza” ½ onion-chopped 1 shallot-chopped ¼ lb. spaghetti pasta ¼ cup of chopped parmesan cheese 1 whole tomato-chopped 2 tbls flat leaf parsley-chopped 1 Italian long style zucchini cut in large cubes (Remove skin) Salt and pepper to taste 3/4 cup of chicken broth or water Optional: You may add cooked Italian sausage or pancetta Sauté onions and shallots in extra virgin olive oil. Add chopped tomato and zucchini cubes. Sauté together and add broth, salt, pepper and parsley. As soon as sauce begins to bubble, slowly add broken pasta to broth. Add cubed cheese and stir. Cook until pasta is al dente, serve hot. You may finish with some grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

By Chef Joe Busalacchi

Meatball Soup 1 lb. ground veal ½ c. finely chopped onions ½ c. grated pecorino cheese ¼ c. finely chopped parsley 1 egg 1 tsp. finely chopped garlic Pinch of salt and pepper Mix meat with onions, egg, garlic, parsley and cheese and form in small balls (thumb-sized meatballs). Dust meatballs with flour. Fry gently in oil. Set aside. Soup Broth: ½ diced carrots ½ c. finely chopped onion 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil 2 c. homemade beef stock ½ c. green peas ½ c. pastina 1 chopped tomato 3 c. water Salt and pepper to taste Sauté onion until translucent. Add beef stock - gently add meatballs. Cook together for ½ hour with low heat. Add ¼ c. peas and ½ c. pastina and cook until al dente. May be necessary to add more water if broth is too thick. Serve with chopped parsley and parmesan cheese.

Bon Appettito, Chef Joe Busalacchi - Via Lago Trattoria

18 my hometown november 2009


Join Otay Ranch Town Center this Holiday Season! November 21st: 3rd Annual Santa Parade and Tree Lighting. November 27th: Shop early the day after Thanksgiving and enjoy giveaways starting at 6am. November 27th-29th: Hybrid “Ice” Rink! Carriage rides and holiday entertainment every weekend!

What brings you today? bebe • Guess • Coach • Aeropostale • REI • Macy’s • Apple • H&M • Banana Republic Coldwater Creek Spa • Gymboree • Cheesecake Factory • California Pizza Kitchen P.F. Chang’s China Bistro • Frida Mexican Cuisine • Nico’s Steak & Chop House and so much more!

For extended holiday hours, sales and event information visit Located at the corner of Eastlake Parkway and Olympic Parkway. GGOR909-01 Otay Ranch.indd 1

10/9/09 8:36:01 AM

on your doorstep November 2009

out and about November 1

November 7

November 8

November 11

Daylight Savings Time ends; set clocks (fall) back one hour

“Snow White” by Chula Vista

“Snow White” by Chula Vista

Snow Camping 101 Clinic

Ballet – at Ruth Chapman

Ballet – at Ruth Chapman

Performing Arts Center at Eastlake High School; Tickets $14, available at Neisha’s Dance & Music Academy, 870 Jetty Lane, (619) 585-1133

Performing Arts Center at Eastlake High School; Tickets $14, available at Neisha’s Dance & Music Academy, 870 Jetty Lane, (619) 5851133

– 7pm at REI Chula Vista; before you head out on your next winter excursion, get some expert tips on making your trip safe and enjoyable; (619) 591-4924

November 12 Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce Mixer – 5:307:30pm; Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, 765 Medical Center Ct.; (619) 420-6603 or

November 16

Fairytale Fundraising

November 13 South Bay Family YMCA’s “Suits & Sneakers Gala” at

Sheraton Hotel and Marina; $100 adult/$75 youth; www.

Dinner with Chula Vista Ballet Company – 6:30pm at Via Lago Trattoria, 866 Eastlake Parkway; $70 and includes dining, entertainment and ticket to 4pm Nov. 8 performance of “Snow White”; Kathy at (619) 5652955

The Adrian GonzalezJim Stone Annual Golf Tournament at San Diego

November 21

Country Club to benefit the South Bay Family YMCA; 11am Shotgun start; $250 or $950 for foursome; www.

Otay Ranch Town Center Farmer’s Market – every Tuesday 4-8pm

3rd Annual Santa Parade & Tree Lighting -- 6pm at Otay Ranch Town Center; (619) 656-9100

“Diabetes & Nutrition:

November 14 MOR-FIT Club Bootcamp –

9-10am; 872 Starboard St.; Join Morlett Fitness for a free bootcamp-style workout; limited to 15 people, reservations (619) 781-2131 or Special Needs Run Chula Vista Live Steamers; The train’s operational pace will be at a much slower pace in order to facilitate loading our friends that have special needs;

Healthy Holiday Eating”

seminar – 6-7:30pm at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center – Nellie Barrington Room; free seminar on prevention, diagnosis and living or caring for someone with diabetes; www. Chula Vista Firefighter’s 1st Annual Charity Golf Tournament at Salt Creek

Free Community Flu Vaccination Clinic – 9am-

November 26 Thanksgiving My Hometown wishes everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. We hope you create some fun memories with family and friends.

Golf Club, 525 Hunte Parkway; 11am Shotgun start; $125 or $500 for foursome; Contact Matt D’Amico (805) 729-0195

20 my hometown november 2009

Save the Date December 5 47th Annual Chula Vista Starlight Parade, Third Avenue between H and E Streets; 6pm. This year’s theme – “Holidays Around the World.”

noon; Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, (619) 5025929 or chulavista Westwind Brass Presents “This Land Is Your Land” –

7pm at Kassebaum Theatre, Mater Dei High School; Adult tickets $20 and $5 students; www.sandiegoperformingarts. org

Please note events and times are subject to change.

neighbor spotlight

The Sundahl Family T

he wooden sign outside the Sundahl Family’s Rolling Hills Ranch home says it all: “If We’re Not Home, Check The Field.” For a family that lives, breathes and works baseball and softball, no more accurate description is available. Starting with Mackie, a 10-year-old All-Star for Bonita Valley Girls Softball, continuing with son Spencer, a 13-year-old switchhitting catcher who loves to gun out base stealers, to mom Lisa who willingly shuttles her family members to practices, clinics and games, and finally to dad Jay, a former college baseball player and current owner of the Bullpen Baseball Academy, the Sundahl’s are a baseball and softball family. However, baseball and softball do not represent just recreation and athletic competitions for this close-knit family. Both sports provide a direct connection to their community. My Hometown readers may recall seeing Jay and his baseball academy on television as he was one of the first local business owners to hold a fundraising event on behalf of the Park View Little League team. Since several of the Park View players had come up through his camps and taken swings in his batting cages, Jay says it was a natural to want to help them and their families. “I’ve been working with some of the Park View players since T-ball,” Jay said. “Giving back to this community is something we’ve done for years. In every camp we hold we set aside spots for kids whose families are financially challenged.

Photo Courtesy of: Jessica Fraser (619) 339-1847

We even take donations of cleats and bats to provide these items to kids in need.” Both Sundahl children have also benefitted from their dad’s tutelage. Spencer, a student at EastLake Middle School, has grown into a talented player, making All-Stars every year since age nine, with aspirations of having a major league career. Before last season, Mackie had never played softball. But she picked it up quickly enough to become an All-Star, too. “She has tried everything – soccer, dance, gymnastics, track,” Jay said about his daughter who would like to earn a college athletic scholarship and become a hairdresser like her mom. “A year ago, she came up to me and said, ‘Dad, I want to play softball.’ She was five years behind some of the other girls. When I told this to her, she said, ‘It’s okay Dad. I’ve been watching all these years.’ She learned from watching, working the counter and coming to the camps.” According to Jay, his wife Lisa is the glue that keeps things together in the Sundahl home. Lisa grew up in Chula Vista and graduated from Hilltop High. She has worked as a hairdresser for 27 years and says she was the one in high school doing everyone’s hair. Lisa says the connection she feels to this community is what she enjoys about her neighborhood. “It has felt like a small town since we started here,” Lisa said. “We have our friends and a sense of community. I can’t imagine it getting any better.” my. november 2009 my hometown 21

on topic on TOPIC: community ADVERTORIAL

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school news

School News November 2009

CVESD Welcomes Program to Address Bullying

Starting this school year, students in the Chula Vista Elementary School District may have noticed a change in how their school is addressing negative social behaviors. “No Place for Hate,” the Anti-Defamation League’s model program for reducing bias, bullying and name-calling, has come to our local schools. “No Place for Hate” was developed to organize schools to work together and develop projects that enhance the appreciation of diversity and foster harmony among diverse groups. The “No Place for Hate” campaign empowers schools to promote respect for individual and group differences while challenging prejudice and bigotry. According to Maty Adato, a board member with the EastLake Educational Foundation and Chairperson for the “No Place for Hate” program, Dr. Lowell Billings, Superintendent of CVESD,

and Nancy Kerwin, Executive Director for Student, Family and Community Services, have been wonderful partners in working with the Anti-Defamation League in bringing “No Place for Hate” to the district. In her role, Adato works with a dedicated group of volunteers. As part of its involvement with the “No Place for Hate’ program, the Chula Vista Elementary School District’s schools are going to be designing three school-wide activities for their students that explore differences and teach students to more effectively deal with bullying on their campuses. Through the Chula Vista Elementary School District’s choice to confront and educate their students in this way, the district might serve as an example to other San Diego students that Chula Vista is “No Place for Hate.”

Eastlake High Robotics Expanding Its Outreach For several years, Eastlake High teacher Leo Ulloa has wanted to expand the number of local schools offering robotic programs for students. As a result of the ongoing success of the Eastlake High TitanBOT program, the former professional engineer now has the resources and support to meet this goal. With the help of the EastLake Educational Foundation, Ulloa and his team have been out motivating and mentoring neighboring EastLake elementary and middle schools. They are also in the process of recruiting at least two more high schools to start a robotics program at their schools. On November 15, Ulloa and his TitanBOT crew of students and volunteers will partner with SPAWAR to host an FLL Robotics Competition for elementary level teams. The event will take place on the Eastlake High campus and will offer local students the opportunity to showcase what they have learned. Ulloa says his team is excited to host their biggest endeavor to date.

Olympian High Senior Class Keeping Tradition Alive The inaugural graduating class at Olympian High last year worked hard to establish a spirit of giving back through their Common Senior Experience. That willingness to make a difference continues with the senior class of 2010. According to Olympian High senior Aaron Lau, this year’s class will focus on Human Rights. The local student said the goal this year will be to raise awareness of human rights that are often neglected. The Common Senior Experience committee has chosen to support the organization WorldConcern, a group dedicated to helping those in need. My Hometown is confident this year’s project will be something the graduating seniors will long remember.

november 2009 my hometown 23





Now meeting on Sundays at 10:00am at Olympian High School in Otay Ranch, 1925 Magdalena Ave., 91913. Listen and preview us online.

If the formalities of traditional churches aren’t your thing, Rancho Vista is the place for you. Services are relevant, casual and fun, with live inspirational music, amazing kids’ programs and a commitment to serve our community. Sundays 9:00 & 10:30 at Otay Ranch HS (1250 Olympic Parkway).

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Bonita Country Day School is a highly acclaimed private school teaching students how to think, not what to think. Small classes allow individual attention in Montessori Preschool & Kindergarten – Grade 5. Bilingual Program, Art & Music are included with a superior academic curriculum.

We at Salt Family Chiropractic are honored to serve the EastLake Community. Drs. Mark and Celeste Salt along with Dr. Greg Kaye bring 30 years combined experience. We specialize in being a wellness clinic addressing your chiropractic needs, along with offering nutritional programs and products. Massage is also available Massage therapy is alsoWednesdays, available. Fridays and Saturdays

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For the past 17 years, Pack & Bianes Vision Care has offered state-of-theart eyecare for adults, children and infants. Look to us for the latest in contact lenses, eyewear, vision therapy or Lasik. We are providers for several insurance plans such as VSP & Tricare. Dr. Pack habla español.

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Mention this ad and you can choose any of the following for just $65.00!! 1 Laser Hair Removal Treatment Upper Lip 1 Laser Hair Removal Treatment Underarms 1 IPL Hand Treatment 1 Microdermabrasion Facial Treatment 1 Rejuvenation Facial 1 East/West Massage a 5 minute Laser Vein Treatment Become a “Holiday Hottie”!! Ask us how!!!

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Great dental care is one of the most important investments you will make in your life. At Dental Art Designs at EastLake you can have a healthier and more attractive smile. Dr. Gomes and Dr. Vasquez, along with their caring staff, strive to provide patients of all ages with a relaxed and comfortable experience. Call us at .....

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The GameTruck is a complete video game birthday party brought to your doorstep. Play the most popular video games in the air-conditioned comfort of the GameTruck’s mobile game room. Self powered and self contained, all we need is a place to park and people to play. We’ll help you throw a great video game party.

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Save the Date and Make Plans to Celebrate a “White Christmas” at Village Walk. You’ll find snow, falling from the sky, each evening in the courtyard area near the Koi Pond at 6 & 7 pm from December 1-24

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My Gym EastLake W

hen opportunity knocked, Arnold Embuido, eager to return to his hometown, answered immediately. Embuido, who grew up in the South Bay and attended Montgomery High School before moving to Los Angeles for college, knew he would return to the place he calls home one day and has done just that as the new owner of My Gym in EastLake. “I’ve had a goal to improve the health and well-being of the children in the community where I grew up,” Embuido shared. “Now I have the opportunity to bring fitness and fun to the families of EastLake. There was nothing like My Gymn when I was growing up here.” Embuido got his start with My Gym as a part-time instructor while a college student at Cal State Northridge. He worked his way up the company ladder until becoming a partner in the corporation. His responsibilities included supporting gyms and helping with the opening of new franchises. He said his love of children is what brought him back as owner of My Gym EastLake. “I really missed the hands-on connection with children,” he said. “Words cannot express how I feel about my new business because I see My Gym as a gift to each child who enters our doors. I love to help youngsters learn how much fun physical activity can be as they build healthy habits to last a lifetime.” Originally developed in 1983, the unique My Gym program helps children 6 weeks thru 13 years develop physically, cognitively and emotionally. With almost 200 locations worldwide, My Gym offers structured, age-appropriate, noncompetitive weekly classes that incorporate music, dance, relays, games, spe26 my hometown november 2009

Photo Courtesy of: Susanne Pedro (619) 952-3678

cial rides, gymnastics, sports and more. Children gain strength, balance, coordination, agility and flexibility while developing social skills, confidence and self-esteem. The program and configuration of equipment changes weekly so that each class is a new adventure. “Our programs are constructive so that children will succeed, and our instructors shower our members with positive reinforcement,” Embuido said. “There’s no such thing as failure in the My Gym curriculum.” My Gym offers birthday parties and Parents’ Night Out events where children are dropped off for a fun evening with My Gym teachers. Summer and winter break camps are also available. The local facility has two classes in Spanish led by Lizeth Andrade, the Director at My Gym EastLake. To join, members pay a onetime registration fee honored in every location throughout the world. There is a monthly tuition for classes. “I jumped at the chance to purchase this business,” Embuido said. “The community is growing with many young families in the area. What has been great is seeing many old friends come in with their children. I’m so glad I’m doing this because I’m giving back to the community I love. I’m confident we will be successful because we have truly wonderful programs and just the right people leading them.” my.

My Gym EastLake, 868 Starboard St., Chula Vista, 91914; (619) 397-0003;





UC San Diego Radiation Oncology South Bay A revolutionary new outpatient cancer facility bringing the latest in radiation therapy technology to your community UC San Diego Radiation Oncology South Bay is a new 11,500 square-foot state-of-the-art facility that provides the South Bay region with a wide range of breakthrough cancer treatment options and technologies in a comfortable, convenient setting. We are equipped with the Trilogy™ Stereotactic System that is enhanced with RapidArc™, the latest innovation in cancer care. Along with UCSD Moores Cancer Center, we are the first to offer RapidArc, which reduces treatment times by up to 60%, while maintaining the same level of precision and therapeutic efficacy. Our Medical Director, Dr. Ramez Farah, a board certified radiation oncologist, has over 20 years of experience in both the university and community settings. UC San Diego Radiation Oncology South Bay is operated by Cancer Treatment Services San Diego, a subsidiary of Cancer Treatment Services International.

We invite you to visit our center to learn more about what we offer and to meet our physician and staff.

Ramez Farah, MD Medical Director

UC San Diego Radiation Oncology South Bay 959 Lane Avenue Chula Vista, California 91914 p. 619-502-7730 f. 619-502-7740

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My Hometown magazine - November 2009  

Community news and events for Otay Ranch and Eastlake

My Hometown magazine - November 2009  

Community news and events for Otay Ranch and Eastlake