The Santee Magazine - V12.2 - Summer 2023

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Summer | 2023

INSIDE: Santee’s Premier Dance St udio for Youth

Expressions Dance & Movement Center

Tips from Staump Music School on How Performing Arts Impact Childhood Education

A publication of the Santee Chamber of Commerce
9349MISSIONGORGEROAD,SUITE#114 SANTEE,CA92071 (LocatedintheSproutsMarketcenter) (619)448-2020 BOOKONLINEATYOURCONVENIENCE ComprehensiveEyeExams ContactLensFittings RedEyeTreatment OcularDiseaseManagement LASIKCo-Management RetinalImaging Broadselectionoflenses andframes Appointmentsavailable lateeveningsandSaturdays Eyecareprovidedbyafamily: Dr.Gendelman,Dr.Patel,andtheirtwodaughters FAMILY USE FLEX SPENDING HERE
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Hello Santee A message from Santee Chamber CEO, Kristen Dare Chair’s Message 7 A note from the desk of current Santee Chamber Board Chair, Melissa Dombo Cover Story 8 C ONTENT S V o l 12 // Iss ue 2 Learn why more than just great dancing exists at Expressions Dance & Movement Center with an inside look from Darcy Fagerwold Socializing Santee 15 A look back at Santee Chamber events and member activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shop Santee 17 Take a look at our winner’s of the Santee’s Favorite voting program from 2022 and Shop Santee with our Favorites . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . My Hometown 21 Meet resident and longtime General Manager of Sportsplex USA, Eddie Vandiver 5 Ways Learning Music Can Positively Impact Your Child 25 Check out some of the ways that music in your kid’s life will make positive impacts to their overall wellbeing Children’s Business Fair 28 Help a young entrepreneur register to showcase their business this summer The Santee Scoop 27 Get the inside scoop from local real estate agent and resident, John Olsen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Community Calendar 35 Take a peek at what’s on deck for some fun around town . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Community Resource Guide 36 Get connected with what you need for your home or business in Santee On The Cover Darcy Fagerwold, Owner of Expressions Dance & Movement Center, and Students 3 TSM |

2023 Chamber Officers

Melissa Dombo, Chair of the Board Raceway Electric & Solar – 619.596.1918

Daniel Buksa, Chair Elect Mission Realty Group – 619.368.8371

Mike Aiken, 1st Vice Chair Carlton Oaks Golf - 619.540.3295

Susie Parks, Secretary Coffee Corner - 619.368.5525

Richard Hatcher, Treasurer California Coast Credit Union 619.889.5981

Darcy Fagerwold, Past Chair Expressions Dance & Movement Center 619.490.7000

2023 Office Staff

Kristen Dare, ACE CEO

Jennae Gonzalez Operations Manager

Heather Bury-Charpentier Communications Coordinator

Bethany Cook Bookkeeper

Tina Firestone Retention Specialist @SanteeChamber

2023 Chamber Directors

Curtis Anderson Salon Thrive - 619.888.8407

Greg Gagnon The UPS Store - 619.249.6657

Bryan Koci Whissel Realty - 619.244.0339

Rocky Qualin Padre Dam Municipal Water District 619.258.4610

Barbara Ryan Santee School District - 619.258.2250 x1452

James Sly East County Economic Development Council 619.729.1413

Pam White City of Santee - 619.258.4100 ext 223

Sarah Wood Allegiance Heating & Air Conditioning 619.244.4584

9625 Mission Gorge Road, Suite B2-315 Santee, CA 92071 619.449.1515
@SanteeChamber @SanteeChamber | TSM 4


Youth recreation is essential for the healthy development of children and teenagers. Engaging in recreational activities not only helps young people stay physically fit, but it also provides them with opportunities to socialize, build relationships, learn new skills, and build self-confidence. When operating a business-focused organization, it may not seem obvious, but I see how these are essential to developing our children AKA our future workforce.

Several key leaders in our community also mirror my interest in youth recreation services, some focusing on it heavily in their own business. For example, owner of Expressions Dance & Movement Center, Darcy Fagerwold, recently stated, “I can’t express enough how much it means to us to be a part of this community of Santee. The fact that we were able to bounce back (after the pandemic) to have 700 kids dancing at the studio, I think that is a representation of the resilience of our community… our community was eager to rise again.” Continuing, Fagerwold also noted, “It’s because of the chamber that I’m able to connect, to have relationships… We work together to partner to support the kids in our community.”

I love that businesses see the direct correlation between a thriving and youthful community alongside a successful and impactful business community. Instilling physical and mental health in addition to social and learning skills is even linked to creating coping skills for dealing with anxiety and depression. Building self-esteem and a sense of accomplishment, directly impacting their mental wellness. Team sports and class-style recreation teaches them how to build relationships with trust, showing that these creative connections can provide a sense of community and belonging.

By encouraging young people to participate in recreational activities, we can help them develop into healthy, well-rounded adults with an emotional well-being. The future is looking bright for Santee’s next generation of employees and entrepreneurs.


Santee Chamber of Commerce


Kristen Dare

Graphic Design

Nick Ossey

Contributing Editors

Melissa Dombo

Jennae Gonzalez

Committee Members

Heather Bury-Charpentier

Kristen Dare

Jennae Gonzalez

Contributing Writers

Kristen Dare

Melissa Dombo

Jennae Gonzalez

John Olsen

Contributing Photographers

Kristen Dare

Melissa Dombo

John Olsen

Lynda Marrokal

Chad Siford, Whissel Realty

Printer Advantage, Inc.

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- Kristen Dare, ACE Chamber of Commerce, CEO


As a local business owner, I eagerly await each issue of this magazine. It's an excellent way for us to connect with our community and business partners. Our city boasts a plethora of offerings, from exciting local events to community-enriching businesses, and in this issue, we put a special spotlight on those dedicated to fostering growth and opportunity for our youth.

If you missed our recent events or photos online, I’d like to share that the Santee Business Awards and Local Heroes Event were a resounding success. We celebrated our local businesses and community heroes, and it was a chance to show our appreciation for those who have worked hard to make our city a better place. In my humble opinion, these were the best-hosted events the Chamber has had to date. Check out page 14 for the award recipients.

We're also eagerly anticipating our Santee Street Fair. This is always one to look forward to, featuring performances, music, local artisans selling their goods, delicious food, a beer garden for adults 21+, rides and games for the kids, and an opportunity for everyone to stroll through booths to browse and purchase from local businesses, ready to connect and share their good services.

Living in or around Santee, you likely know that our city is a fantastic place for our youth to grow and thrive. We have outstanding businesses that offer opportunities for our littles to teens to get involved, learn, and have fun. This magazine's theme is youth recreation and services, and Santee has so much to offer in this regard.

Looking ahead we're excited to be working on our new winter event that will close out the year with a bang. Our program, aimed at fundraising and awarding scholarships to local high school students looking to get into the construction trade industry, fits right into one of our brand pillars, Promoting Community Enhancement. This program will benefit our youth by nurturing future talent in the industry. Keep an eye out for more details on how you can support this effort.

In conclusion, let’s continue to support each other, our local businesses, and enrich our youth's lives with all that our city has to offer.

Lastly, if you're not already doing it, come hang out with us on social media-we've got all the latest updates so hit that follow button and join us.

Thank You to
our Strategic Partners
Community Catalysts Community Conveners
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Community Champions
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That may seem like a bold statement, but arts education has been shown to have a significant impact on children’s academic, social, and emotional development. Almost as soon as motor skills are developed, children begin communicating through artistic expression. Dance classes give kids an outlet to express their emotions and channel their energy into the creation of something beautiful, which then inspires and uplifts others. With guidance and training they develop strength, skill, and confidence. Exceptional dance classes don't just make great dancers, they make great humans, and caring teachers change lives forever.

How do I know this is true? Because my teachers changed my life. The whole trajectory of my life shifted because of the words of a teacher. When I was in the 4th grade, our school put on a multi-cultural fair. Our class was assigned to Ireland, and I was chosen to be in a group that would perform the Irish Jig. This would be my debut dance performance and I was ecstatic! But while I was performing, my crepe paper apron(with the shamrock on front!) fell apart. I remember how panicked and devastated I felt, but I didn't know what to do other than to keep going. As I exited the stage, I burst into tears. While being comforted by my parents, my teacher approached and said to them, “She did just what a professional dancer would do- she kept going, because the show must go on!” And in that moment my life was changed forever. I decided, I would be a dancer.

My parents enrolled me in classes and my dance studio became my home away from home. Over the years as my home life was affected by mental illness, financial instability, and substance abuse, the dance studio was an anchor, and my teacher, Suzanne Mollenhauer, a stabilizing force. In time and with her mentorship, I began to assist in classes and then teach on my own. Later, as a college student majoring in dance, I remember the moment I realized I wanted to pursue a career in teaching rather than performing. I was standing in the wings watching my students on stage and I realized that my heart was more full than it had ever been when I was the one standing in the spotlight.

After teaching in local studios for over 20 years, I finally decided to turn a dream into reality and open my own studio. The vision that drew me forward was creating a place where every child felt safe, special, and celebrated. Without money to secure a space of my own, I started looking for alternatives. I opened

Expressions Dance & Movement Center (an ambitious name with no “center” to speak of!) in January of 2011 out of the dance room at Lakeside Middle School. I offered 5 classes, 1 day a week and started with 65 students and one assistant. That summer, with the help of friends and family, we moved into Carlton Oaks Plaza. This family-friendly shopping center has been our home for the past 12 years, where our dance family has grown from 65 to 700, from 1 dance room to 6, and from that one assistant to employing 30 awesome team members.

Over the years our mission and just cause has only become more clear and more motivating. To build a world where every child feels seen and cared for and where they are supported in discovering and developing theirunique gifts. Our staff is dedicated to teaching exceptional dance classes in a way that nurtures every child so that parents breathe easier. All of our programs are built around this core goal, keeping kids and their wellbeing at the center of all that we do. We work hard to maintain a culture of continuous growth. As a team, we are dedicated to constant learning and improvement. What matters most is showing up for our students and helping them reach their goals.

Expressions offers classes in ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, lyrical, contemporary, musical theater, and acrobatics. Students can explore recreationally or dive deep into competitive teams or our intensive ballet program, East County Ballet Conservatory. Dancers give back through community performances, service projects with our chapters of the National Honor Society for Dance Arts, and by assisting in dance classes. Some of these students are buddies that help students with special needs enjoy the benefits of dance. Additionally, Expressions offers a full teacher training program and employs graduates of this program, who become Junior Faculty. These students benefit from weekly leadership classes as well as training and mentorship with senior staff members.

Every dancer has the chance to shine on stage with many performance opportunities throughout the year. Our students perform in our annual Winter and Spring Recitals, our fulllength Spring Ballet (Alice in Wonderland in 2024!), at local competitions, Disneyland, the San Diego County Fair, and of course- the Santee Street Fair! When our students reach 8th grade they become eligible for one of our regular trips to perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with the Spirit of America dance team. All of these fun experiences help our students grow in confidence and create memories that last a lifetime.

All of us have two places where we spend most of our lives, usually that’s home and either work or school. Recent studies have shown the immense benefit we can receive from having a “third place.” A third place is a place where you can connect with others and be yourself. It is my hope that Expressions Dance can be that Third Place for our students and their families.

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As a child and teen, my dance studio was my third place, and it saved my life in so many ways. The world has been an especially scary and uncertain place for the past few years and it has affected our youth most of all. They need more places where they feel safe and seen.

When being a business owner is hard; when I am glaringly aware of all my shortcomings and I feel like quitting, I think about the kids and they give me strength. When we miss the mark as a team and we want to wallow in our failings, we think about the kids and we dust ourselves off, commit to be better, and try again. I think about the countless students we have had over the years who had struggles like I had as a kid and, because of their experiences at the studio, they were able to overcome. Yes, I teach dance classes, and I love it. But it’s not about that. I want to help these kids change the world, one dance class at a time, and I believe they will!

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"From the moment that my daughter joined performing group, the dance studio became her second home away from home. Her dance family has been supportive of all of her endeavors ranging from pushing her skills as a dancer to growing her as a leader." - Isabelle's Mom 9225 Carlton Hills Blvd. Ste 28, Santee, CA 92071 Leadership Classes Assistant Training Ballet Conservatory Program Competitive Teams Performing Opportunities Classes for Special Needs Honor Society Adult Company Mentorship Program A PLACE TO GROW Grow your child's confidence and leadership experience with our elite programs & classes! Summer camps & classes available | Next season registration opens June 1st Competitive Teams and East County Ballet Conservatory auditions: June 19-23
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The Santee Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual Business Awards on Thursday March 16th at Sycuan Casino Resort, where they were also the proud title sponsor of the event. Santee Chamber President/CEO, Kristen Dare, alongside past Board Chair, Eddie Vandiver, co-hosted onstage as the organization welcomed over 200 guests. Starting out with celebrating the top contributors to the Chamber of 2022, this elite group of businesses represents the chamber's strategic partners who have made a significant annual financial investment in support of the Chamber’s initiatives, programs and events. These members are Alison Construction, Allegiance Heating & Air, California Coast Credit Union, Carlton Oaks Golf, City of Santee, Cox Communications, Excell Security, Expressions Dance & Movement Center, FURology Pet SPaw, Goodman Orthodontics, Jimmy’s Family Restaurant, Lloyd’s Collision & Paint Center, Mission Realty Group, Raceway Electric & Solar, Santee Family Optometry, Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve, Santee School District, Staump Music School, Sycuan Casino Resort, TDT Construction, The UPS Store Santee, Waste Management, Walmart - Santee, and Whissel Realty.

Some other mentionable honorees were Daniel Buksa of Mission Realty Group for the Chairman’s Award given by 2022 Chair of the Board for the Santee Chamber, Melissa Dombo, Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve for receiving the 2022 Community Impact Award, and most notably, Expressions Dance & Movement Center for receiving the 2022 Business of the Year award.

Finishing out the evening, the Chamber announced the winners of the Santee’s Favorites. Check out our “Shop Santee” feature on page 17 for a list of the winners!


The Santee Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual Santee Heroes Celebration on Thursday April 27th at Carlton Oaks Golf Course. Santee Chamber President/ CEO, Kristen Dare, hosted the ceremony alongside Miss Santee titleholders, Chamber staff, Committee Chair Susie Parks (Santee Coffee Corner) and Board Chair, Melissa Dombo (Raceway Electric & Solar), as the organization welcomed over 125 guests. This event is a gathering of Santee Service Organizations, Local Educators, First Responders, Healthcare Workers, Community Leaders, and Elected Officials to receive recognition for their personal and group impact in our region and honor their contributions over the past year.

Starting the evening on the patio overlooking the course, acoustic guitar music was provided by Junior Miss Santee’s own grandfather, Ruben Delgado, adding a special touch as guests arrived. Moving inside, the tables impressed with centerpieces from Florabella, programs printed by The UPS Store, and a dessert bar by Crumbl Cookies, NatSweets and Baklava King. We started with our organization awards from the Santee’s Favorites voting program as we honored the winners for favorite Community Organization - Lions, Tigers & Bears, Non Profit Organization - Santee Food Bank, and Place of Worship - Pathways Community Church.

Continuing on, we proudly announced each community honoree from the previous year:

Santee-Lakeside Rotary - Club 2022 Rotarian of the Year Karen Fleck

Kiwanis Club of Santee - 2022 Kiwanian of the Year Jim Holman

Santee School District - 2022 District Teacher of the Year Tara O'Connell

Santee Fire Department - 2022 Firefighter of the Year Jeremy Carroll

San Diego Sheriff’s Department - 2022 Santee Deputy of the Year Detective Damon Chandler

Sharp Grossmont Hospital - 2022 Healthcare Hero Rachel Carry

Sharp Rees-Stealy - 2022 Healthcare Hero Julie Roth, D.O.

It was a huge pleasure to honor our past Board Director, Jim Peasley, as his family accepted a special award presented by Senator Brian Jones. I was able to announce the retirement of Dustin Trotter of TDT Construction who was also the title sponsor of the event. To close out the night, Dustin announced our most prestigious honor, our Person of the Year award, which went to the most deserving individual and local resident, Charlie Plavi. Charlie’s volunteer work has benefited so many people through all of the different groups he represents - he is always cheerful, has great planning skills and does all of this without wanting or requiring any thanks or recognition, earning his obvious nickname as “Mr. Volunteer”.

300 Site Campground

Rental Cabins

Fishing | Stocked Year-Round

Event Venues

Five Miles of Trails

Reservable Picnic Areas

Pedal Boats

Six Playgrounds | Sprayground

General Store

Angry Petes Pizza Restaurant

@santeelakes 9310 Fanita Parkway, Santee, CA 92071 | TSM 16



Retail: Specialty Food & Beverage: Automotive: Contractor - General: Health & Wellness: Professional Service: Beauty & Salon: Dental & Orthodontic: Hospitality & Recreation: Property Management & Living: Brewing & Distilling Education: Insurance Services: Real Estate: Business Resources: Financial Services: Manufacturing & Production: Restaurant - Full Service: Contractor - Artisan: Government & Utilities: Medical Services: Restaurant - Quick Service: Special Promotions & Advertising: Community Organization: Place of Worship: Non-Profit Organization:
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We teach our students that anything is possible. For over 130 years Santee School District has been encouraging young minds to dream big. Launch into a world of possibilities that start right here, in Santee.


School District

Registration for the 2023-24 school year is open!

Learn more about our award-winning district at

ung minds meet o




I first met Eddie back in 2014 when I started working for the Santee Chamber. He was a Director, serving as the current Chair of the Board, and was instantly a friend. His kind demeanor and fun-loving attitude made for easy conversations as I got to know him. After serving on our Board from 2010-2016, he’s continued his chamber involvement in many ways. Keeping the Santee Sportsplex’s membership a priority, he has often been the host of networking mixers and kickball tournaments for our group and other neighboring chambers. Personally, he has also donated his time and talent to us as a regular MC at events like the Taste of Santee and our annual Business Awards Night.

For those who don’t know, managing our local Sportsplex is a big undertaking… with over 350,000 people visiting each year, this has been a premier destination in town since 2010, with Eddie serving as General Manager since their opening day. The park is owned by the City of Santee and is part of Town Center Community Park. Sportsplex USA has a long term contract to operate and maintain the 15 acres inside of the fence lines. They proudly host youth soccer leagues that serve over 700 kids ranging in age from 3-17 and all levels of play, roughly 85% of these players are Santee residents, truly showcasing a regional value as they offer four full seasons of play each year. In addition to their regular soccer leagues, they host several travel tournaments for baseball and softball throughout the year and especially on major holiday weekends.

Eddie takes great pride in calling Santee his home. His wife, Natalie, works as a Registered Dental Hygienist at a family-owned dental office in town and is a former “Queen” having held the Miss La Mesa title in 1999. It’s no surprise their daughter, Maddie, then became Junior Miss Santee in 2021, following in her mother’s footsteps. Maddie takes dance classes at Expression Dance here in Santee, and also plays soccer at the Sportsplex with her little brother, Eddie III.

– Kristen Dare, ACE Santee Chamber of Commerce

Santee parks & recreation

Your Kids • Their Summer • Our Camps



*Non Santee resident’s fee is an additional $15 per weekly rate Santee Day Camp- Youth entering 1-5 grades X-Factor Camp- Youth entering 6-9 grades

Instructional Classes

The City of Santee offers enriching instructional classes for all ages! Classes include a new floral design class, dog training, babysitting, and more! Register today, availability is limited.

For more information and to register for summer programs, visit us at www.

Still have questions? Contact Community Services at (619) 258-4100 ext. 222 or go online at

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Big Rock Park Week Date Field Trip Fees* 6/15 & 16 Partial Week (no field trip) $85 week 1 6/19-6/23 Santee Lakes $205 week 2 6/26-6/30 La Jolla Shores $205 week 3 7/5-7/7 Partial Week (no field trip) $125 week 4 7/10-7/14 Sesame Place $225 week 5 7/17-7/21 Mission Beach $205 week 6 7/24-7/28 Padres Game $205 week 7 7/31-8/4 Ice Skating $205 week 8 8/7-8/11 Rockin’ Jump $205 week 9 8/14-8/18 Back to School Bash (no field trip) $205 week 8/21 & 22 Partial Week (no field
$85 week
Days: Monday-Friday • Times: 7:00am-6:00pm Primary Location: Santee Teen
Jun 19-23 Cheerleading, Dance & Tumble Camp 1:00-4:00pm Ages 5-11 Jun 26-30 Tumbling & Gymnastics Camp 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 5-10 Skate/BMX/ Scooter Camp ** (M-Th) 9:00–10:30am Ages 5-13 Jul 10-14 Girls Volleyball Camp 1:00-3:30pm Entering 9th Grade Kids Cooking Camp 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 5-13 Musical Theater & Dance Camp: Charlie & the Chocolate Factory 1:00-4:00pm Ages 5-12 Jul 17-21 Minecraft Engineering using LEGO® Materials 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 5-8 Minecraft Master Engineering using LEGO® Materials 1:00-4:00pm Ages 7-12 July 24-28 Mad Science All-Stars 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 6-12 Hip-Hop/TikTok Dance Camp 1:00pm-4:00pm Ages 5-12 Jul 31Aug 4 Tiny Tots Preschool Playmania Camp 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 3-6 Skate/BMX/ Scooter Camp (M-Th) 9:00–10:30am Ages 5-13 Aug 7-11 Mandalorian Training using LEGO® Materials 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 5-8 Mandalorian Missions using LEGO® Materials 1:00-4:00pm Ages 7-12 Aug 14-18 Red Hot Robots 9:00am-12:00pm Ages 6-12
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The City of Santee’s Hometown Heroes Banner Program recognizes and honors Santee residents (current or past) and/or their family members and Santee business owners/ operators, who have served, are serving, or have given their lives in service in the United States Armed Forces. Honor a HERO today!

news, programs, and more. Scan the QR Code or find the list on the City’s website.

21 TSM | CITY OF SANTEE AT&T Channel 99 | Cox Channel 117 | Stream Email Us: Call us: (619) 258-4100 x162 tv Stay connected watch live or stream Connect The City of Santee uses both traditional and nontraditional communication tools to reach With Us residents, business owners, developers, and others. Peruse the list of tools the City employs where
receive City information



1. U.S. Department of Education data on more than 25,000 secondary school students found that students who report consistent high levels of involvement in instrumental music over the middle and high school years show "significantly higher levels of mathematics proficiency by grade 12."

2. Playing an instrument as a kid leads to a sharper mind in old age, according to a new study conducted by Brenda Hanna-Pladdy, a clinical neuropsychologist in Emory’s Department of neurology, and her colleagues. The researchers gave 70 people between the ages of 60 and 83 a battery of tests to measure memory and other cognitive abilities. The researchers found that those who had played an instrument for a decade or longer scored significantly higher on the tests than those with no musical background.

3. In a 2009 study in the Journal of Neuroscience, researchers used an MRI to study the brains of 31 6-year-old children, before and after they took lessons on musical instruments for 15 months. They found that the music students’ brains grew larger in the areas that control fine motor skills and hearing—and that students’ abilities in both those areas also improved. The corpus callosum, which connects the left and right sides of the brain, grew as well.

4. Certain instruments, such as percussion, help children develop coordination and motor skills; they require movement of the hands, arms, and feet. Music training not only helps children develop fine motor skills, but aids emotional and behavioral maturation as well, according to a new study, one of the largest to investigate the effects of playing an instrument on brain development.

5. Children who study a musical instrument are more likely to excel in all of their studies, work better in teams, have enhanced critical thinking skills, stay in school, and pursue further education. In fact, music and math are highly intertwined. By understanding beat, rhythm, and scales, children are learning how to divide, create fractions, and recognize patterns.

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We would like to thank our beautiful Santee royalty for representing our city so well during their reign. Miss Santee 2022, Heather Cantin, Miss Teen Santee 2022, Julianna Abrajan, and Junior Miss Santee 2022, Ezrah Collier. Despite all three of them having full schedules with school, work, and their family activities, they were sure to attend City events ready to interact with countless members of the community. We are excited to see what these young women will accomplish next!

If you would like to experience this once in a lifetime opportunity please consider applying! Win or lose you will learn, grow and develop your skills throughout the whole process.

H a v e Q u e s t i o n s ? S e n d a n e m a i l t o m i s s a n d t e e n s a n t e e @ g m a i l . c o m


Hi, I’m John Olsen, a longtime resident and business advocate of Santee. As an active member of the Santee Chamber I often showcase upcoming development projects and events around town. Be sure to follow me for more on

Summer Activities for Santee's Kids

As the weather heats up and kids are almost out of school, you may be looking for activities and programs to keep them busy and engaged this summer. Here are a few options I’ve found for things you could do with your kids this summer!

Momentum Tutoring

Santee’s Favorite winner, Momentum Tutoring, offers 6 weeks of academic workshops covering the basics (Reading, Writing, an d Math) as well as several elective workshops (Spanish, Art, Fitness, and Science).

Santee School District Summer Camp

The Best Summer Ever camp registration opened up on March 20th. They offer 3 different types of camps: YALE Preschool Camp, Traditional Camps, and Specialty Camps. If you have not enrolled by April 15th, there will be a waitlist open to apply to until the week before camp starts.

City of Santee Parks & Recreation Summer Programs

The City of Santee has such a great Parks & Rec department! On pages 10-14 of their Recreation Activity Guide, they have listed a variety of camps and programs that are available throughout this summer. It has dates, locations, and prices broken down, so be sure to give it a read and find the right program for your family this summer!

Infinity Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Infinity BJJ offer a number of different programs, including some specifically for kids. If you have been wanting to get your kid involved in martial arts for exercise, to get their energy out, or for self-defense, Infinity BJJ could be a great option for you!

Cameron Family YMCA

The Cameron Family YMCA in Santee has a plethora of activities and programs for everyone this summer. The summer day camp runs on week days from June 19th to August 18th. You can register online, in person, or over the phone. In addition to the Day Camp, they offer swim lessons, gymnastics, and more!

Summer is for Dancing at Expressions Dance & Movement Center (EDMC)

Santee’s Favorite winner, EDMC has a wide variety of classes this summer for ages ranging 1 to 12! From July 5th to July 29th, students have the opportunity to learn ballet, aero, hip hop, jazz, and even take a class where they would get to try a new style each week. Be sure to look for the performances of dancers who have been learning at EDMC at the street fair this summer!

Staump Music School

The Staump Music School offers a variety of music lessons for ages ranging from 4 to 12+. They teach Rock Band, group lessons, and private lessons in guitar, piano, ukulele, and voice. Group classes meet once a week for 45 minutes. Be sure to look for the students of the Staump Music School at the Street Fair this summer!

Art with Larisse

Art with Larisse has year round classes, but the summer offers the perfect opportunity to learn a new skill. The classes are each 1 hour 15 minute slots with an hour of instruction and allowing for clean up. You can schedule a free introductory art lesson for new students aged 5-17! Family discounts are available.

Be sure to look for the kids from these programs at the Street Fair to watch their performances and to sign up for this Summer’s programs! Stick this on your fridge so you don’t miss out on any of the fun!

As the weather heats up, so is the market. If you or someone you know has been considering a move this year, give me a call and we will find the right home for you!

Brought to you by:

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Join Us!


9:00AM - 2:00PM


Children ages 6-17 years old develop a brand, create a product or service, build a market strategy, and then open for business in this one-day marketplace.





Mentors for Young Entrepreneurs are Available Upon Request


FUNDING PROVIDED BY K-12 Community Grant


Observe the opportunity for children to launch their very own startup business! Join Momentum Tutoring as they host their first Children’s Business Fair, in partnership with the Santee Chamber of Commerce and the Santee Kiwanis Club, at West Hills High School. Kids can develop a brand, create a product or service, build a marketing strategy, and then open for customers at the one-day marketplace as K-12 students booths are hosted at this groundbreaking Santee event. The business fair will take place at West Hills High School on Saturday, August 12th from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm.

Sponsored by Acton Academy, the Acton School of Business, and supported by the generous contributions from donors and volunteers, we all believe that principled entrepreneurs are heroes and role models for the next generation as these are the people who make sacrifices to innovate, create jobs and serve their communities.

Recently we were made aware of a local Santee entrepreneur who would be a perfect candidate for participation in the fair; his name is Halo Hallas and it makes perfect sense because he sounds like an angel on earth. Halo is a 10 year old fourth grade student at Hill Creek School who earns straight A letter grades, volunteers around the community, helps out with his younger sister and still manages to take weekly drum lessons at Staump Music School, stay active on championship soccer teams, take classes at Champion Gymnastics and find time to perform in Sonrise Church’s performance of The Little Mermaid.

So in addition to all this, what makes Halo special? He’s been asking his mom if he could start his own business for several years but his mom said, “Let’s wait until you’re ten!”. He wasted no time and found a soda machine and snack machine on Offer Up, then received a second soda machine through a generous donation. He used gifted birthday money to purchase the inventory for the machines to get them up and running and is currently seeking locations to place some of them. It may be hard to read in the photo of his first “Business Plan” but it reads: Hi. I’m Halo. I’m 10 and I want to make the world a way better place. I have started a vending machine business to make people happy and support them. Anyway, I hope you come and buy from Halo’s Hospitality.

He is excited to provide excellent customer service and plans on taking his profits to help pay for his little sister’s gymnastics camp this summer. If you are interested in hosting one of his machines, reach out to Halo at 619-988-2349 or HaloHallas13@ (all accounts monitored by Halo’s mother).

And for those who also have young entrepreneurs in their lives, encourage them to participate in the Santee Children’s Business Fair this summer.

Register online at:

– Kristen Dare, ACE Santee Chamber of Commerce
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SANTEE, Calif. – More than 30,000 visitors are expected to enjoy samples from local craft breweries, live music and entertainment, crafters, artists as well as carnival rides and games for the family at the Thirteenth Annual Santee Street Fair and Craft Beer Festival on Saturday May 27.

The annual street fair will celebrate the military with a special presentation by Sycuan Casino Resort during the opening ceremonies, honoring a local Gold Star family. “We are excited to bring the community together to offer fun for the entire family.” said Kristen Dare, CEO of the Santee Chamber. “The Santee Street Fair is a great way to kick-off your Memorial Day weekend as we celebrate the freedoms given by those who have served and sacrificed.”

With one of the best craft beer gardens in East County, sponsored by Goodman Orthodontics, this 21+ area will have live entertainment from Deano’s Pub and feature local San Diego breweries,

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including Belching Beaver Brewery, Bivouac Ciderworks, BNS Brewing & Distilling, Burning Beard Brewing Co., Creative Creature Creature Brewing Co., Monster Brewing, Pacific Islander Beer Co. , Poochie’s Hooch Urban Cidery, Tap Truck San Diego and Three Frogs Beer Co. Pre-sale tickets can be purchased online for $20. Tickets include (10) ten 4-ounce tasters or for $5 more you can add a bacon-wrapped hot dog, while limited quantities last. Wristbands can be purchased online or at the door.

In addition to the beer tasting event, attendees can view over 200 vendor booths. You can purchase food and beverages, learn about home services, see your favorite local businesses and service organizations or purchase some of the many amazing products offered! There will also be an interactive kids’ area with various carnival rides, games and prizes to win.

A large community stage, sponsored by Carlton Oaks Golf, Expressions Dance & Movement Center and Staump Music School, will be at the event with continuous live music and performances. With local radio personality Clint August as the MC for the day, he will host the opening ceremonies for the day then welcome various acts performed by Staump Music School, Expressions Dance and Movement Center, performing arts groups from West Hills High School, and If N When, a youth band comprised of kids from local rock band favorite, Sonic Moonshine. Adjacent to the stage, the Santee School District Foundation will also be showcasing artwork in a sequence ranging from Transitional Kindergarten through 8th grade.

Admission to the event is free and runs from 10am-6pm. Parking will be available adjacent to the event in the Santee Trolley Square or the HD Supply parking lot.

For more information about the event, visit Contact the Santee Chamber of Commerce at (619) 449-1515 or email

– Kristen Dare, ACE Santee Chamber of Commerce
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The Santee Chamber of Commerce is the business voice in our community.

Creating opportunities for our members to build successful businesses while enhancing economic and community development.

Business Resources

Establishing relationships with outside agencies, serving as a mecca of tools for referrals and resources, and improving communication between members, public and government alike.

Legislative Advocacy

Identifying business needs and communicating to government agencies on behalf of our membership while advocating for better business opportunities in our region.

Economic Development

Connecting businesses with resources and tools to keep them developing their professional growth and competence, and referring members to portals on how to utilize benefits.

619.449.1515 CONTACT


On Tuesday May 16, the Santee School Board of Education held their regularly scheduled board meeting. However, this happens to be the most anticipated meeting of the year as they host an annual tradition of showcasing their academic achievement awards for the district’s top performing 8th grade students from the 2022-23 school year.

Two eighth grade students from each school were selected to participate in this competition by their teachers in collaboration with the school administration. The Academic Student Achievement Award is provided to eighth grade students who participate in an annual end of the year competition. This year the Academic Achievement Award Competition integrated the areas of writing, speech, and mathematics. Students completed an authentic math task with real world data and problems. The students used their mathematical solutions, combined with several informational articles to draft an informative essay, and finally, crafted a persuasive speech with visuals to inform an audience about their topic.

City of Santee Mayor John Minto, the Santee Chamber of Commerce CEO Kristen Dare, and the Santee School District Foundation President Hee-Jin Peterson presented scholarships and special honors the top recipient awards.

Congratulations to the top recipients:

Overall Winner: Ryan Nobles, Chet F. Harritt

Essay Competition Winner: Anthony Terry, Pepper Drive

Mathematics Competition Winner: Aiden Turnbloom, Cajon Park

Speech Competition Winner: Megan Messick, Rio Seco

Congratulations and job well-done to all of the Academic Achievement Participants:

Cajon Park: Alexis Buquet, Aiden Turnbloom

Chet F. Harritt: Jacob Timmerman, Ryan Nobles

PRIDE Academy: Marwan Al Qaissi, Saverna Zengilou

Carlton Hills: Jason Neal, Riley Kulak

Hill Creek: Jay Alcantara

Rio Seco: Dylan Chapelle, Megan Messick

Carlton Oaks: Marcus Baird, Lilee Roudebush

Pepper Drive: Morgan McGhee, Anthony Terry

Website Resources: Key: COMPOC = Santee Community Oriented Policing Committee ECYP = East County Young Professionals SPARC = Santee Park and Recreation Committe May 2023 2 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Center 3 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 5 SPARC Meeting City Hall 8 COMPOC Meeting City Hall 10 City Council Meeting City Hall 16 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Center 20 Special Olympics West Hills High School 24 City Council Meeting City Hall 27 Santee Street Fair Riverview Parkway Pancake Breakfast Santee Lakes Clubhouse 29 Memorial Day Santee Chamber & City Hall Closed June 2023 1 SPARC Meeting City Hall 2 ECYP Mixer (Padres vs. Cubs) Petco Park Friday Nights Live Santee Trolley Square 6 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Center 7 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 8 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 9 Friday Nights Live Santee Trolley Square 12 COMPOC Meeting City Hall 14 City Council Meeting City Hall 26 City Council Meeting City Hall 27 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East 29 Pancake Breakfast Santee Lakes Clubhouse Santee Lakes Clubhouse August 2023 1 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Centert 2 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 3 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East SPARC Meeting City Hall Night Fishing Santee Lakes 9 City Council Meeting City Hall 10 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East 14 COMPOC Meeting City Hall 15 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Centert 17 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East Night Fishing Santee Lakes 23 City Council Meeting City Hall 26 Pancake Breakfast Santee Lakes Clubhouse Santee Lakes Clubhouse 15 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East Miss Santee Coronation Santee Trolley Square 17 Santee Kiwanis Club: Experience the Renaissance Summer Concert Riverwalk Drive (Near YMCA) 20 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Center 22 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East Night Fishing Santee Lakes 24 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 Pancake Breakfast Santee Lakes Clubhouse Santee Lakes Clubhouse 28 City Council Meeting City Hall 29 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East July 2023 4 Santee Salutes Town Center Community Park East 5 Morning Buzz Santee Coffee Corner #2 6 Night Fishing Santee Lakes SPARC Meeting City Hall 10 COMPOC Meeting City Hall 12 City Council Meeting City Hall 13 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East 18 Santee School District Board Meeting Educational Resource Center 20 Santee Summer Concert Town Center Community Park East Night Fishing Santee Lakes 25 Blood Drive City Hall 35 TSM |


Animals (Dead on Public Property) City Public Services 619.258.4100 x304 Animal Services San Diego Humane Society 619.299.7012 Animals (Stray) San Diego Humane Society 619.299.7012 Barking Dogs San Diego Humane Society 619.299.7012 Bees (Private Property) Information 411 Birth/Marriage/Death Certificates County Recorder’s Office 619.401.5700 Boys & Girls Club Boys & Girls Club 619.938.2582 Business Licenses City Finance 619.258.4100 x146 Chamber of Commerce Chamber of Commerce 619.449.1515 Child Care Referrals YMCA 800.481.2151 City Council Meetings City Clerk 619.258.4100 x114 Crime Prevention Santee Sheriff’s Dept 619.956.4000 Disabled Services Independent Services 800.510.2020 Disaster Preparedness Fire Department 619.258.4100 x207 DMV (El Cajon) Dept. of Motor Vehicles 800.777.0133 Dump (Sycamore Landfill) San Diego Landfill Systems 619.449.4053 Elementary Schools Santee School District 619.258.2300 Employment City Human Resources 619.258.4100 x262 Events Info (Recorded Info) City Recreation 619.258.4100 x201 Fire Hydrants Padre Dam MWD 619.448.3111 Food Bank Santee Food Bank 619.448.2096 Garage Sales City Code Compliance 619.258.4100 x206 Graffiti City Public Services 619.258.4100 x304 High Schools Grossmont Union HSD 619.644.8000 Household Hazardous Waste Waste Management 619.596.5100 Insect, Mosquito & Rat Infestations County Vector Control 858.694.2888 Library Santee Public Library 619.448.1863 Neighborhood Watch Santee Sheriff’s Dept 619.956.4000 Noise Control City Code Compliance 619.258.4100 x206 Ordinances City Clerk 619.258.4100 x114 Park Reservations City Recreation 619.258.4100 x222 Potholes City Public Services 619.258.4100 x304 Public Records City Clerk 619.258.4100 x114 Public Transportation Metropolitan Transit Systems 800.266.6883 Rattlesnakes Heartland Non-emergency Dispatch 619.441.1621 Recreation Programs City Recreation 619.258.4100 x222 Recycling Information City Community Services 619.258.4100 x127 Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve Padre Dam MWD 619.596.3141 Senior Citizen Trips/Socials City Recreation 619.258.4100 x222 Sheriff’s Department (non-emergency) Non-Emergency Dispatch 858.565.5200 Sidewalk Repairs City Public Services 619.258.4100 x304 Storm Water City of Santee 619.258.4100 x167 Street Lights City Development Services 619.258.4100 x168 Teen Center City Recreation 619.258.4100 x210 Traffic Accident Information Santee Sheriff’s Dept. 619.956.4000 Traffic Signals City Development Services 619.258.4100 x168 Trash Pickup Waste Management 619.596.5100 Volunteers City Recreation 619.258.4100 x222 Water Service Padre Dam MWD 619.448.3111 YMCA (Cameron Family) Cameron Family YMCA 619.449.9622

















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