February 11, 2022

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FEBRUARY 11-24, 2022 | VOLUME 20, ISSUE 3



In-N-Out Burger Gets Conditional Approval for Downtown Drive-Through Spot E Y E O N S J C / PAG E 3

If In-N-Out Burger meets certain project design conditions requested by councilmembers, the company has the approval to open a new location on Del Obispo Street. Photo: Collin Breaux


Davies Legislation Targets Education Issues

Editor’s Pick: Kids’ Pet Parade

Siegel: New City Hall Is Coming





The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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Photo: Courtesy of Jacob Baltierra/Unsplash

What’s Up With...

to decide whether In-N-Out Burger can come here—which is a highly successful restaurant chain—or another restaurant chain that might be less successful and, therefore, generate less traffic.” The project came before the council for approval, because the drive-through component required discretionary and conditional-use permits. A mere sit-down restaurant, or other business with no drive-through lane, could have opened without council purview. Taylor, who has lived in the downtown area for 31 years and represents the district, said he is “very aware” of the traffic problems that residents endure every day. Taylor voted against doing the traffic study in October 2020. “It’s frightening how fast cars come off that area of the freeway. They just want to come home,” Taylor said. “Given what I’ve heard over the year and the tremendous amount of emails, it’s no reflection on this company. It’s a fantastic company. It’s well-run. I just see that it does not fit the vision that I have for our downtown. It’s been a long process, and I’m sure a lot of money, but I will continue to be a no vote on this.” Numerous residents at the meeting spoke against the project due to various concerns, including those related to traffic. Some against the new Del Obispo restaurant said they were not necessarily opposed to In-N-Out itself and actually liked the company and food, but didn’t feel the downtown location was a good fit. “We suffer severe gridlock trying to get through town, particularly in that location. And don’t forget the fire station is just there. How is it going to be impact-


Council Approves In-N-Out Restaurant on Del Obispo Street BY COLLIN BREAUX

Amid public outcry, the San Juan Capistrano City Council decided by a split vote to approve staff recommendations for discretionary and conditional-use permits for an In-N-Out Burger drivethrough restaurant on Del Obispo Street, on the condition that the company tweak design details for the project based on council feedback. The approval effectively means In-NOut can open a new restaurant at the current downtown Marie Callender’s site. The current building will be demolished, and a new one will be built in its place. The city’s Planning Commission, Cultural Heritage Committee, and Design Review Committee all recommended the project be denied for various reasons, including issues with proposed landscaping details. The vote at the special council meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 8, was 3-2. Councilmembers Troy Bourne and Sergio Farias, and Mayor Pro Tem Howard Hart voted yes. Mayor Derek Reeve and Councilmember John Taylor voted no. The city decided to The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

hold a special meeting just for discussion on the project due to the expected high level of public comment. A traffic analysis report done on the project before the vote—based on observations made at current In-N-Out locations in Rancho Mission Viejo and Laguna Niguel—said there would be not be significant traffic impact from the project, a finding some residents against the project disagreed with due to their concerns that the new restaurant will worsen traffic gridlock on Del Obispo Street. Councilmembers who voted in favor of the project said it would be unethical to deny the new restaurant after going through the study and that they trusted the data. Bourne emphasized that the issue was one of property rights, as he has done in the past. The site of the proposed restaurant, as well as other properties along Del Obispo Street, are owned by the Stroscher family, which has long-established roots in the area. “We’ve received many emails that said, ‘Guys, just keep Marie Callender’s. We love it.’ There’s some chuckles out here, but I want you to appreciate that those emails aren’t coming in jest,” Bourne said. “There is a little bit of a misunderstanding throughout the city of what the City Council controls and what they don’t control. We do not control users. We don’t get Page 3

ed?” said Rosa Hribar, who has lived in town since 1966 and previously spoken against the project. “Number two (concern), pollution. Carbon monoxide emissions from all the cars going through the drive-through, as well as the gridlocked cars on the road, will affect all of us.” Former Councilmember Laura Freese said “noxious fumes” from the restaurant traffic could negatively impact nearby historic buildings. “The second thing that really concerns me is the right-turn-only lane when you come out of that location. The Historical Town Center Master Plan identified Ortega (Highway) and Camino Capistrano to be a route for people who want to experience the historic downtown,” Freese said. “Through traffic was to go on Del Obispo, but the plan of the In-NOut takes it from Del Obispo to Camino Capistrano and back to Ortega, so all those three major streets will be highly impacted by the 1,500 cars. I just don’t think that’s acceptable.” City Manager Ben Siegel said he spoke with the Orange County Fire Authority division chief, who did not express concern with the traffic study. Some councilmembers who voted for the project said traffic was already an issue before this project and is a problem they can’t fix. “One of the things I learned from one of my colleagues was that these are self-metering enterprises. Drive-through restaurants admit a car every 35 to 40 seconds,” Hart said. “A car drives up to the window, takes 35 to 40 seconds on average to pay their money, collect their fries and a ‘Double-Double’, and then they go back on the road. It’s not as if you have 28 cars waiting to get back onto Del Obispo.” Cassie Ruiz, the development manager for In-N-Out and project applicant on behalf of the company, said the application does not require any variances or code changes and that the company has not been dismissive of feedback from the city’s advisory boards. “(Eliminating the drive-through lane) is not an option here. Less than 2% of all of our In-N-Out Burger restaurants do not have drive-through service. In 74 years, we’ve opened just a handful of stores that do not offer this,” Ruiz said. “Especially now, in a post-COVID world, omitting our drive-through service for our restaurant is not a possibility.” Property owner Andrew Stroscher said every city staff report has recommended approval and every third-party report has been “glowing.” “We have to make sure this project works right and doesn’t maladaptively affect the community,” Stroscher said. Conditions of the approval include a request from Bourne for the In-N-Out logo design on the building be made more “classy” and for the white background on the design to be less luminous. thecapistranodispatch.com


Affordable Housing Needs Come into Focus as City Works Through State Requirements BY COLLIN BREAUX

The San Juan Capistrano City Council heard from local affordable housing advocates loudly and clearly during a meeting on Feb. 1. Councilmembers amended an update to the city’s Housing Element—regulations that are required to be updated every eight years by the state—to specify that residents who live and work in San Juan Capistrano will be prioritized for future affordable housing developments. While those preferences were already included in the proposed Housing Element Update, councilmembers decided to emphasize them further when the new regulations go into effect. The overall update was approved by the council during the meeting, after months of rezoning considerations and public hearings. The update will now go to the state for final certification. Members of the Community Leader Coalition, a citizen advocacy group that works with the city and is comprised of members of the Hispanic community, spoke during the meeting—as they have at other council meetings throughout the year—in favor of more affordable housing for San Juan residents. “The CLC is centered in the neighborhood of the Capistrano Villas, a neighborhood that consists of many hard-working, loving, and caring people who not only contribute to the city’s

economy but also to the city spirit,” Miriam Zuñiga said. “(The) neighborhood also faces challenges that impact many low-income families. Some of these challenges include a lack of a stable home, frequent movements, overcrowding, and poor living conditions, along with other health issues.” The availability of affordable housing has been a challenge in Orange County and throughout California, where the cost of living is high—particularly when compared with other areas, and as the country is currently dealing with economic inflation. In San Juan Capistrano, an 1,870-square-foot home with three bedrooms and two bathrooms can command as much as $4,300 a month in rent, according to an online listing. The annual median income in Orange County is $106,700, an informational presentation presented to the council said. Under a Regional Housing Needs Allocation requirement set by the state—also known as RHNA—the City of San Juan Capistrano must demonstrate it can provide 1,266 housing units until 2029. That does not automatically mean such a number of homes or apartments must be built, but rather that the city can merely demonstrate the capacity for such a number by then.

Updated housing regulations in San Juan Capistrano are being sent to the State Department of Housing and Community Development for their review and certification, as required by state law. The city and state are dealing with providing enough affordable housing for residents. Photo: Collin Breaux

Approximately 1.3 million housing units are required throughout the state. Housing Element Updates are set by the state on a recurring basis to accommodate anticipated growth. The required housing in San Juan and California must also be for various income levels, including low-income and very low-income—which is anywhere from 80% to less than 50% of the county’s annual median income. More than 500 low-income and very low-income housing units are required under San Juan’s RHNA mandate.

Assemblymember Davies Introduces Legislation Targeting Education Issues BY COLLIN BREAUX

Opposition to mask and vaccine requirements for students, allegations of critical race theory being taught in K-12 schools, and other controversial educational discussions are continuing in South Orange County—this time from State Assemblymember Laurie Davies (R-Laguna Niguel). Davies held a news conference at her San Juan Capistrano office on Monday, Feb. 7, to express her opposition to school pandemic restrictions and discuss her newly introduced legislation, the California Parents’ Bill of Rights Act. “We are here to fight for the rights of our children,” Davies said. “During these last two years, Sacramento politicians have ignored the needs of our children and used our kids as a political pawn. As a result, our children are suffering. They have been forced to endure many The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

unnecessary challenges.” Davies’ new measure, Assembly Bill 1785, calls for parents to be able to “advise on the moral or religious training of their minor child,” by requiring schools to give parents more opportunities to be involved in their children’s education. According to the bill, school districts would be required to provide parents an opportunity each quarter to learn about their child’s coursework, “including the source of any supplemental educational materials.” AB 1785 also calls for districts to inform parents and guardians in advance of any teachings related to comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education, as well as the procedure that would enable their child to opt out of that education. Language in the legislation also pro-

State Assemblymember Laurie Davies (R-Laguna Niguel) has introduced new legislation intended to give parents more rights when it comes to their children’s education. Davies and other local officials spoke against student mask and vaccine requirements, current school curricula, and other education issues during a news conference on Monday, Feb. 7. Photo: Courtesy of the Office of Assemblymember Laurie Davies

poses a requirement for districts to send out an annual newsletter for parents to learn about the nature and purpose Page 4

Rezoning decisions previously approved by the council included considering allowing high-density housing developments on four parcels of Doheny Park Road, including where Petsmart and Staples currently are located. Previously approved and potential housing developments are also being factored into satisfying San Juan Capistrano’s RHNA requirements, including The Farm residential community currently under construction on Del Obispo Street and potential apartments that could be built on Forster Street.

of clubs and activities offered at their child’s school. Though AB 1785 does not mention masks or vaccines, Davies addressed those topics at Monday’s news conference. Davies said her office has fought “damaging policies” and will continue to oppose all student mask and vaccine mandates. The general consensus among medical experts is that masks and vaccines are effective tools to limit the spread of COVID-19. Masks have been required indoors for students and adults on school campuses throughout the pandemic by the California Department of Public Health. Gov. Gavin Newsom has called for a vaccine requirement for students once the Food and Drug Administration fully approves all COVID-19 vaccines. Additionally, State Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) has introduced legislation, the Keep Schools Open and Safe Act, that would also require students be vaccinated to continue attending classes in person. thecapistranodispatch.com


Capo Unified Grapples with Substitute Teacher Shortage The Capistrano Unified School District saw its existing substitute teacher shortage become even more acute after the Thanksgiving break, San Clemente High School Principal Chris Carter said. The first three weeks at the start of 2022 were particularly rough, Carter recalled. “January hits, and it got ugly,” he said. CUSD has been dealing with a general shortage of substitute teachers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic—a shortage that Carter said was extremely difficult in 2021. “We struggled all last year,” Carter said. The shortage has been bad enough to warrant action by the CUSD Board of Trustees at a recent meeting—specifically, a resolution approved on Jan. 19 intended to address the shortage. Among provisions approved by the board included allowing student teachers to be assigned to a classroom without the supervision of a credentialed teacher and issuing temporary certificates to individuals with a bachelor’s degree and a background check. The district easing regulations to address staffing needs follows an executive order issued by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Jan. 11 that also allowed flexibility with school staffing. A staff report for the Jan. 19 meeting outlined the dilemma, noting that the shortage has been a result of the surge in COVID-19 cases from the omicron variant, as well as the district having an insufficient number of employed substitutes available to cover staff absences. From Jan. 3-12 of this year, instructional programs in CUSD needed to fill 2,064 substitute teaching assignments for in-person instruction at an average of 258 assignments per day for eight work-

ing days, according to the report. “Due to extreme substitute shortages caused by the omicron-driven rise in COVID-19 cases, the instructional programs were unable to fill daily substitute assignments at an average of 22% per instructional day,” the report said. The recent shortage is said by local education officials to be easing up now, but it was pronounced in January during the recent labor shortage, driven, in part, by a spike in cases following widespread holiday traveling and gatherings. “Quite often, we rely on retired people,” Carter said. “COVID hit, and some of them didn’t want to put themselves in that situation.” An “enormous” number of teachers did not report to class after the recent holiday break, Carter said. The current pay rate for substitute teachers in CUSD is $175 a day. CUSD Trustee Gila Jones said while people might “push through” illnesses in normal times, “responsible people” are no longer doing that during the COVID-19 pandemic—hence, the reason there might be fewer instructors in the classrooms on a given day. Joy Schnapper, head of the Capistrano Unified Education Association—the local teachers union—said the shortage has been difficult for teachers, students, and the district as a whole. While the district has done a lot to increase the number of people in the “pool” of substitutes, potential substitutes might not feel comfortable venturing out, considering the various strains of COVID-19 circulating, Schnapper said. “It’s really (been) quite a task, but I think people have been coming together on a wing and a prayer until the numbers subside,” Schnapper said. “My experience has always been that subs have been welcomed on campus.” Some teachers are taking extra students into their classrooms, and special education teachers have been tasked at times with covering open classrooms that need an instructor, Schnapper said.

Davies said she sent a letter to Orange County Health Officer Clayton Chau urging the removal of all mask mandates on Feb. 15, concurrent with the upcoming expiration of the current statewide indoor mask mandate. Davies further said parents should be told about different educational opportunities available for their kids, should be allowed to view their child’s academic records at any time, and be able to review course materials taught to children in advance. “Too often, state regulations make it hard to transfer students from poor-performing schools,” Davies said.“Even worse,

some districts don’t even tell parents all the hoops they have to jump through just to begin the transfer process.” Orange County Board of Education member Mari Barke also spoke at the press conference in favor of AB 1785, advocating for school and parental choice. No child should be constrained by their zip code, Barke said. Barke also addressed critical race theory, which numerous local parents have said has been taught in K-12 schools and is detrimental. Two forums on CRT were held over the summer, Barke said. Education officials and experts, including in the Capistrano Unified School


The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

A lack of available substitute teachers has caused some student teachers and administrators to handle extra classroom instruction, as well as prompted state and local education officials to relax requirements in an attempt to widen the pool of available substitutes. Photo: Courtesy of Pexels

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The shortage is not unique to CUSD and is a statewide and even national issue—and represents a decline that has been steadily happening “for a while,” Schnapper said. Reasons given by Schnapper for the gradual decline included the increasing specialized and accelerating needs in education that can be difficult to cover, including those related to math and foreign languages. More job security for substitutes—who are not unionized in CUSD—could further help, Schnapper said. At Dana Hills High School, current teachers have sometimes given up their preparation time to fill in for open classes when substitutes aren’t available, Principal Brad Baker said. Even administrators, including Baker, have had to pull double duty. “It is getting better,” Baker said. Baker said he is proud of the way his school staff has overcome absences and

that the school district has done a fantastic job in recruiting substitutes. Every morning is a puzzle that everyone at Dana Hills puts together, Baker said. “At Dana Hills, we’ve been able to get by. We’ve always been able to overcome,” Baker said. “I’m really impressed with the effort everyone’s put in.” Dana Hills staff and faculty could use patience and grace from the public as they deal with the shortage, Baker said. Being a substitute teacher is a difficult role and one that requires the right skill set and temperament, Carter said, adding that CUSD in general is understaffed. Anyone who is qualified for a substitute teacher position and wants to apply is welcome to do so with the district, Carter said—particularly if they’re looking for part-time work. “Substitute teachers are an important commodity in our district,” he said. “We absolutely cherish their time and efforts.”

District, have denied CRT is being taught in schools and instead said cultural diversity and awareness is what’s being discussed with students. “Even if we can’t have a say in what you’re learning, we want you to know what it is and educate you so you can take action,” Barke said. The OCBE has been a vocal opponent of pandemic school restrictions as well, and previously sued the state over the restrictions, though without success. CUSD Trustee Lisa Davis—who represents San Clemente on the CUSD Board and is a frequent voice against mask and vaccine requirements—fur-

ther praised Davies’ legislation at the conference, also speaking against what she sees as a “biased curriculum” and “explicit sex education.” All medical decisions for kids need to be made by parents, Davis said. “We have to be vigilant as parents, as community members, in being aware of what’s happening and call out things that are not right,” Davis said. AB 1785 may first be heard in a committee starting on March 6. It would need to be approved by both the State Assembly and Senate, and it would then need to be signed by the governor to become law. thecapistranodispatch.com






Citizens’ Climate Education 10:45 a.m.-noon. This nonpartisan climate action group holds monthly meetings on the second Saturday of the month through Zoom video conferences. Email larrykramerccl@ gmail.com to receive a link to join.

CD | City Removes Historic

Tree Due to Safety Concerns A falling limb from a large and ancient sycamore tree recently damaged several cars in the JSerra Catholic High School parking lot, necessitating the tree’s removal by the City of San Juan Capistrano. The tree—which is said to be over 200 years old—reportedly fell in the JSerra parking lot during high winds on Jan. 25. No one was injured from the fall. An arborist sent by the city to inspect the tree determined it was not structurally sound and at risk of complete failure due to damage that occurred when the limb was shed. The tree was then removed due to safety concerns.


City Council 5 p.m. The San Juan Capistrano City Council will hold a regular meeting open to the public. People can attend in person or watch online through the city website. City Hall, 32400 Paseo Adelanto. sanjuancapistrano.org. FRIDAY, FEB. 18

CD | Camino Real Playhouse

Founder BJ Scott Passes Away Barbara Jean (“BJ”) Scott, founder of the Camino Real Playhouse, died on Feb. 2 at age 79. She passed away peacefully and without pain in the company of loved ones, her husband, Tom Scott, said. BJ Scott was born on December 7, 1942 in Kansas City, Kansas, and was one of six children. “In 1989, BJ signed a lease to what would become the Camino Real Playhouse in San Juan Capistrano,” a biography provided by Tom Scott said. “The theatre has been a central figure in San Juan Capistrano for the last 30 years, producing 6 shows a year on the main stage and 3-4 shows in the Black Box theatre. BJ was also instrumental in starting the Shakespeare in the Park events during the summers.” BJ Scott suffered a series of strokes five years after founding the theatre. She continued to work at the theatre as the director of the Youth Conservatory, teaching classes for youngsters 1st-through-12th grade and enrichment classes for local schools, producing a major children’s production each year. After resigning from the venue, she concentrated on her granddaughters and great-grandchildren and her favorite activities, including cooking and reading.

CD | Community Mourns

Death of Former Parks and Rec Commissioner Ron Denman Former longtime Parks and Recreation Commissioner Ron Denman recently passed away, drawing tributes from current city officials. The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

Camino Real Playhouse founder Barbara Jean (“BJ”) Scott recently passed away at the age of 79. Photo: Courtesy of Tom Scott

Coffee Chat 8:30 a.m. A spirited town hall forum on community issues. The forum will likely be back in person at Hennessey’s Tavern in San Juan Capistrano, 31761 Camino Capistrano. Follow Coffee Chat SJC on Facebook for information. TUESDAY, FEB. 22

The recent Feb. 8 City Council meeting was dedicated in his honor. “Ron lived in San Juan Capistrano for 47 years. He moved to San Juan Capistrano with his late wife, Eileen, in 1975 and raised their two daughters, Laura and Jennifer,” Mayor Derek Reeve said.“He retired from the pharmaceutical industry as a national account manager after 35 years.” Denman grew up in Wisconsin and was a skilled musician, Reeve said. Denman is on the city’s Wall of Recognition—intended to spotlight residents who have made a notably beneficial impact on the community—after being nominated by Mayor Pro Tem Howard Hart last year. “Rest in Peace to Commissioner Ron Denman,” Hart said in a post on his official Facebook page. “Thank you for raising such an amazing daughter, who would eventually become my bride; for welcoming me into your family; for serving as a friend, confidant, and advisor; and, for your long record of service to San Juan Capistrano. You will be dearly missed.”

The historic site will host live entertainment, bell ringing, local food and craft vendors, and a virtual presentation by swallows expert Dr. Charles Brown that day. “Mission San Juan Capistrano opens its doors to the faithful, the weary, the families, the students and the birds this year on St. Joseph’s Day after having significantly reduced or canceled festivities over the past two years,” Mission San Juan Executive Director Mechelle Lawrence Adams said in a news release. “The historic bells will ring at noon on March 19 to celebrate Saint Joseph and welcome everyone home, including the swallows.” Tickets are on sale now. Visit missionsjc.com for more information.

CD | San Juan Capistrano

Teachers Receive CUSD Teacher of the Year Awards The Capistrano Unified School District has announced Teacher of the Year Awards for different grade levels, including two in San Juan Capistrano. San Juan Hills’ Marie Finman is the High School Teacher of the Year, and Marco Forster Middle School’s Sergio Sanabria is the Middle School Teacher of the Year. District representatives recently visited the winners at their schools to congratulate them. “I feel humbled because everyone here is so great, and that I would be selected by them is humbling. I just come and do my job,” Finman said in a story by CUSD Insider, the district’s news outlet.

CD | Mission San Juan

Capistrano Gears Up for Swallows Return, St. Joseph’s Day in March The annual return of the swallows to San Juan Capistrano and St. Joseph’s Day are set for March 19—and Mission San Juan Capistrano is prepared to celebrate the occasions again. Page 6

Cultural Heritage Commission 4:30 p.m. The San Juan Capistrano Cultural Heritage Commission will hold a public meeting. City Hall, 32400 Paseo Adelanto. sanjuancapistrano.org. WEDNESDAY, FEB. 23

Planning Commission 5 p.m. The San Juan Capistrano Planning Commission will hold a public meeting. City Hall, 32400 Paseo Adelanto. sanjuancapistrano.org. THURSDAY, FEB. 24

Design Review Committee 4:30 p.m. The San Juan Capistrano Design Review Committee will hold a public meeting. City Hall, 32400 Paseo Adelanto. sanjuancapistrano.org. FRIDAY, FEB. 25

The next print issue of The Capistrano Dispatch publishes.

“I’m super elated that I am able to represent such a wonderful community,” CUSD Insider quoted Sanabria as saying. “The (community) means everything.” Sanabria has taught a variety of subjects in CUSD since 2013 and is noted for the level of care he has for students. Finman teaches Spanish and English language development and has been teaching at San Juan Hills for eight years. Karen Kauo of Castille Elementary School in Mission Viejo was named the Elementary School Teacher of the Year. thecapistranodispatch.com

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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EVOLUTION SWIM ACADEMY TEACHES KIDS LIFE-SAVING SKILLS to clients in RMV, since residents of The Ranch have responded well to the new swimming opportunities. Evolution Swim teaches kids to be safe when out in the water and how to become more confident swimmers. Learning to swim can help kids develop, because it may take them out their comfort zone and has physical and mental benefits, Delgado said. The students they work with range in age, from 3 months to 12 years old. Opening a swim training center in South Orange County makes sense because there are so many areas in coastal Southern California where kids can be at risk for drowning, Delgado said. Evolution Swim is open year-round. “Learning to swim has to go yearround,” Delgado said. “Offering a child the



fter struggling to start a second location in Rancho Mission Viejo, Evolution Swim Academy finally opened in the community’s Los Patrones Business Park in October 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic, of course, was behind the delay for the swimming school, which features an indoor pool and offers lessons to kids. “We started the process in what was probably the worst timing ever in 2019,” Evolution Swim founder and former Olympic swimmer Felipe Delgado said. “We got it open, man. I doubted it would ever happen, but the entrepreneurial spirit is to keep going.” Evolution Swim’s first location is nearby in Mission Viejo. Delgado decided

Kids and adults can go swimming and learn to be safe in the water at Evolution Swim Academy, a new business in Los Patrones Business Park. Photo: Courtesy of Evolution Swim Academy

to open a second spot in RMV since he’s been giving swimming lessons at the community’s homeowner association pools for the past several years. After climbing up the proverbial hill to open the second site, Delgado feels good about offering swimming services

ability to protect themselves is one of the greatest gifts you can give to a kid.” The indoor pool water and air temperatures are always set to warm levels. The academy’s management team has done a good job since the opening, and the ongoing communication with customers has paid dividends, Delgado said. Asked for his take on the overall layout of Los Patrones Business Park—an industrial center in the community with a bevy of businesses—Delgado said it’s a wellthought-out concept and “great” mix of tenants. Delgado noted the center has a jiu-jitsu gym, a pet spa, and a wine and brewery spot, among other tenants. “We’re so happy to be in the Rancho Mission Viejo community,” Delgado said. “We can’t wait to continue to grow.” CD

San Clemente Council Open to Initiating Talks with The Ranch over Incoming Neighborhoods BY C. JAYDEN SMITH, THE CAPISTRANO DISPATCH


here’s no opportunity for the City of San Clemente to annex one of Rancho Mission Viejo’s next planning areas at this time, Jennifer Savage, assistant to the city manager, told councilmembers during their Feb. 1 meeting. In her agenda report to the council regarding the feasibility of incorporating Planning Area 5, Savage explained that the city would need RMV’s consent for an annexation application, but that it “does not wish to annex until complete buildout of the Ranch Plan, which is several years out.” The City Council’s discussion comes months after Mayor Gene James asked city staff to come back with a report on the feasibility of annexing RMV’s Planning Area 5—where roughly 2,400 new homes are planned to be built within the 1,350acre area near San Clemente’s northeastern border in the coming decade. James explained that annexation was not a priority of his, but he stressed the importance of having a dialogue between the city and RMV—colloquially referred to as The Ranch. He also reaffirmed his belief that the eventual PA5 residents would use San Clemente’s public facilities, which necessitated the city’s preparation. “I want to open a dialogue with RMV, understand what they’re doing, (and) when they’re going to do it,” James said. “The other thing that makes it unatThe Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

tractive for me—to annex Planning Area 5—would be (that) there’s no retail there, so there would be no sales tax (revenue). There will only be property taxes.” When complete, The Ranch, a master-planned community and unincorporated area comprising 23,000 acres, will have added roughly 14,000 new homes to South Orange County. PA5 is one of six total planning areas, or villages, that is years away from development. So far, The Ranch has opened the Villages of Sendero and Esencia, and is constructing the Village of Rienda, or Planning Area 3, which is slated to begin selling homes this year. PA5 is expected to include about 2,440 housing units, including senior housing, commercial centers, public facilities and 159 acres of open space, as well as a 200-acre golf course. The Orange County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) was represented during last week’s discussion by Executive Officer Carolyn Emery. Emery said that LAFCO continues to keep an eye on what future governance for unincorporated communities such as The Ranch will look like, in that the issue is included on the agency’s current work plan. “We continue to make ourselves available to the communities if they want to explore governance options, but in terms of a strategic approach, our commission has decided to look at South Orange

County as a whole, as opposed to individual areas,” Emery said. She affirmed James’ suggestion that LAFCO’s mission is to transition unincorporated areas into cities, or look into other options at the very least, and said it believes cities can provide better services to an area than the county can. “I don’t think it’s any secret, either, that the county also has worked with LAFCO to transition unincorporated areas,” Emery added. “In addition to that, one of our jobs is to make sure that any type of governance is feasible, and as you all know, that also includes community resident support, as well as landowners.” While Councilmember Steve Knoblock commented that it would be impossible to begin the process of annexation without RMV’s cooperation, he emphasized the importance of understanding what is coming toward the city’s borders. He suggested the council invite representatives from The Ranch to speak with them, possibly in a public setting, as they plan to build out the remaining thousands of homes within its planning areas. “It’d be nice to know what exactly those impacts are going to be and how we’re going to incorporate that in the future,” Knoblock said. With RMV’s knowledge that the council would discuss the feasibility on Feb. 1, James said that could be the start of conversations between the two entities. “Again, I just want to make it clear, I Page 8

am not particularly fond of the idea of annexation, and I don’t think RMV is, either,” he said. In an email to The Capistrano Dispatch, Mike Balsamo, senior vice president of governmental relations for RMV, said The Ranch’s primary focus is opening the new Village of Rienda “and delivering much-needed attainable housing in the coming year.” “As we have done historically, we look forward to maintaining an open line of communication with the City (of San Clemente) regarding our development plans within the County,” he said. Councilmember Kathy Ward said she was still concerned about Planning Area 8, which is located near the southeast part of San Clemente, and stressed that The Ranch has a “great degree” of flexibility to construct any number of homes in each area that it desires to build. Ward also supported the potential meeting and the chance to hear updates from RMV, as that would allow the city to create ideas for how to adjust within its own borders. “I’m not saying we’re changing Rancho Mission Viejo; I’m just saying that how we connect everything, where all these homes go, we need to understand how that’s going to work in our city,” she said. “That’s how we plan. We have to plan for (Avenida) Pico and (Avenida) Vista Hermosa, and (Avenida) La Pata.” The council voted to receive and file the staff report. CD thecapistranodispatch.com

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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GUEST OPINION | Health and Nutrition 101 by Gina Cousineau

Prioritizing Heart Health N

ationally, we observe “American Heart Month” in February to raise awareness to the importance of a healthy heart and encourage healthy habits meant to reduce our risk of heart disease. This campaign encourages individuals to take up a healthy habit, educate themselves, and get their cholesterol tested. When clients reach out to me, they usually do so with the goal of weight loss, but as an integrative nutritionist, I cannot in good conscience help them reach their weight-loss goals without addressing what might be happening under the hood. This then leads to a conversation about their family’s medical history, as well as their own personal medical history, lifestyle behaviors of past and present, along with looking at basic blood work and preventative screening tests to assess their situation. What I come to find out is that most are unaware of the significance of this information, and for those who were told of an area of concern, some are minimized by their medical providers, and others choose to ignore the facts. Given that heart disease is the leading cause of death for Americans, I take this opportunity to help you advocate for your heart health, prioritizing the information provided below, especially as we age. 1. Understanding Your Risk While there are many “heart disease calculators” that claim to assess our risk, I am going to suggest the following based on my client population and what I have seen anecdotally.

Family history of cardiovascular disease (especially early disease), paired with your blood lipid profile, smoking history, and kidney health status, are a good starting place. If your total cholesterol, low density lipoproteins (LDL), HEALTH AND and/or triglycerides NUTRITION 101 are out of range, BY GINA COUSINEAU even just a little bit, even if your high-density lipoproteins (HDL) are high, you could be laying down plaque. If you are at risk, asking your provider about a calcium score (a CT of the arteries around your heart) and carotid ultrasound allows for a look “inside” to understand your plaque risk. Another important blood test, indicating a genetic predisposition toward CVD, is lipoprotein a (LPa). Because this affects 20% of the population, you should consider asking for this test with your yearly blood work. This information, paired with shared decision-making, allows you and your provider to decide on a course of action, if needed. 2. Eating a Healthy Diet Choosing a mostly plant-based diet, including lean proteins (animal and/ or plant), nonfat/lowfat dairy and other protein-rich calcium sources, as well as healthy fats, is highly encouraged, while limiting saturated fats, added sugars and sodium. Remember that “plants” comprise a wide variety of foods, including whole grains, legumes, nuts/seeds, vegetables, fruit, and tofu products.

This doesn’t mean you need to count calories—though given our obesity epidemic and the fact that losing 5-10% of your weight can improve your health dramatically—but just eating more wholesome food, in general, can be a lifesaver. 3. Getting Physically Active The thought of starting an exercise program is often as daunting as the concept of adjusting one’s diet. While I understand the fear of change, neither needs to be a scary proposition. Given where we live, beautiful South Orange County, all one needs to do is step outside their door and allow their feet to do the walking. That’s it! While I always suggest starting with a “walking program,” this is simply to make this fitness routine part of your daily life, like toothbrushing. You need it to be healthy. For more information on how to understand your risk of heart disease, visit nationaltoday.com and heart.org. Gina Cousineau sees clients virtually and in person out of her San Clemente office. Her extensive education—a BS in dietetics and MS in integrative and functional nutrition—chef training, and 30-plus years as a fitness professional allow her to help clients lose weight and improve their health. You can reach her at mamag@ mamagslifestyle.com, 949.842.9975, and on Instagram and Facebook @mamagslifestyle. Register for her complimentary weekly newsletter at mamagslifestyle.com. CD PLEASE NOTE: In an effort to provide our readers with a wide variety of opinions from our community, The Capistrano Dispatch provides Guest Opinion opportunities in which selected columnists’ opinions are shared. The opinions expressed in these columns are entirely those of the columnist alone and do not reflect those of The Capistrano Dispatch or Picket Fence Media. If you would like to respond to this column, please email us at editorial@thecapistranodispatch .com.

34932 Calle del Sol, Suite B, Capistrano Beach, CA 92624 phone 949.388.7700 fax 949.388.9977 thecapistranodispatch.com

HOW TO REACH US CITY EDITOR Collin Breaux • 949.388.7700, x109 cbreaux@picketfencemedia.com SPORTS Zach Cavanagh • 949.388.7700, x110 zcavanagh@picketfencemedia.com ADVERTISING Debra Wells • 949.388.7700, x104 debra@wellsadsolutions.com DISTRIBUTION Racks, Driveways, Subscriptions Inna Cazares • 949.388.7700, x111 icazares@picketfencemedia.com GENERAL MANAGER Alyssa Garrett • 949.388.7700, x100 agarrett@picketfencemedia.com

PICKET FENCE MEDIA CEO/FOUNDER Norb Garrett EDITORIAL Managing Editor Shawn Raymundo City Reporter, SC Times C. Jayden Smith City Reporter, DP Times Breeana Greenberg City Editor, Capo Dispatch Collin Breaux Sports Editor Zach Cavanagh Columnists Fred Swegles Tom Blake Special Projects Editor Andrea Papagianis-Camacho Copy Editor Randy Youngman

Letter to The Editor NO TO IN-N-OUT ON DEL OBISPO RUTH A. CLARK, Capistrano Beach I agree with Larry North and Marilyn Witt. Besides the traffic problems, we have enough fast food in that location. Marie Callender’s has a very attractive building, and we need more of this type of restaurant there. I happen to like The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

Marie Callender’s. It could stand a few upgrades to be more competitive with some of our other marvelous restaurants. Plus, their pies are great. Maybe more local support would help. My household shops locally. We have great shops . . . DeNault’s, Vons, Asian and Mexican restaurants and groceries, Cedar Creek, Trevor’s at the Tracks, Bad to the Bone and Heritage Barbecue, Sundried Tomato, and more. We don’t need to go to Dana Point or Ocean Ranch. How about an In-N-Out on the east side of the freeway? There are no drivethrough restaurants over there, and I would like one, now and then. For in-

stance, at the corner of La Novia and San Juan Creek Road. Plus, many other sites.

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR POLICY The Capistrano Dispatch reserves the right to edit reader-submitted letters for length and is not responsible for the claims made or information written by the writers. Have something you’d like to say? Email your letter to cbreaux@picketfencemedia.com no later than 8 a.m. on Monday morning. Limit your letters to 350 words or less. Please send with your valid email, phone number and address for verification by staff. Your address and phone number will not be published.

ADVERTISING Associate Publisher Lauralyn Loynes (DP) Advertising Sales Debra Wells (CD) Laura Gaffney (SC) ART + DESIGN Art Director Jasmine Smith Graphic Designer Chelsie Rex OPERATIONS General Manager Alyssa Garrett Group Operations & Production Coordinator Inna Cazares FINANCE Accounting & Finance Manager Tricia Zines CONTRIBUTORS Megan Bianco, Jake Howard

The Capistrano Dispatch, Vol. 20, Issue 3. The Dispatch (thecapistranodispatch) is published twice monthly by Picket Fence Media, publishers of the DP Times (danapointtimes.com) and the SC Times (sanclementetimes. com). Copyright: No articles, illustrations, photographs, or other editorial matter or advertisements herein may be reproduced without written permission of the publisher. The publisher assumes no responsibility for return of unsolicited manuscripts, art, photos or negatives. Copyright 2022. All rights reserved. Printed in the USA.




The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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6:30-8:30 p.m. The BrewHouse hosts a trivia night every Wednesday. Test your knowledge with friends, or show up solo and join a team. The BrewHouse, 31896 Plaza Drive, Suite D3, San Juan Capistrano. 949.481.6181. brewhousesjc.com.

Editor’s Pick

The List

THURSDAY | 17 LIVE MUSIC AT TREVOR’S 6 p.m. Eat some food, grab a drink and unwind while listening to live music at Trevor’s at the Tracks. Troy Ritchie will perform. Trevor’s at the Tracks, 26701 Verdugo Street, San Juan Capistrano. 949.493.9593. trevorsatthetracks.com.

What’s going on in and around town this week



FRIDAY | 11 LIVE THEATER AT CAMINO REAL PLAYHOUSE 7:30 p.m. Camino Real Playhouse is continuing with live theater shows. Come see Blithe Spirt, a comedy that deals with a séance and writer’s block. The show runs through Feb. 20. Current health guidelines will be in place. All staff members and actors are fully vaccinated. Camino Real Playhouse, 31776 El Camino Real, San Juan Capistrano. 949.489.8082. caminorealplayhouse.org.

The Fiesta Association’s Kids’ Pet Parade returns this year to Los Rios Park. Photo: Collin Breaux

SATURDAY | 19 KIDS’ PET PARADE Noon. The Fiesta de Las Golondrinas events hosted by the San Juan Capistrano Fiesta Association continue. Come watch a variety of pets displayed by their owners. Children ages 5-12 are welcome to enter. Entries have a chance to win in various categories: best team costume with owner and pet, best domestic/household pet, best exotic pet, best barnyard/farm animal, and best bird. Los Rios Park, 31747 Los Rios Street, San Juan Capistrano. 949.615.1920. swallowsparade.com.


County. Rancho Mission Viejo Riding Park, 30753 La Pata Road, San Juan Capistrano. 949.299.7219. theridingpark.com.

what happens at the space—including events, programs, and other educational and fun stuff. The Ecology Center, 32701 Alipaz Street, San Juan Capistrano. 949.443.4223. theecologycenter.org.

WOMEN’S HORSEBACK RIDING CLUB 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Las Vaqueras, an all-women’s horseback riding club, will meet. Come hang out with fellow equestrians and ride the open space of South Orange

COMMUNITY FARM TOUR 2-3 p.m. Come take a look at The Ecology Center, a local farm and community center. A staff member will guide you through the 28-acre land and go over



fired early into filming and cited as an alleged legal liability. Save for catching a random episode here and there on TV when I was in middle school, Forever is actually my first-ever full viewing of anything Jackass-related. And let me tell you, I was not prepared for so many of these elaborate, absurd pranks to include full-frontal close-ups of male nudity. I think I’ve now seen enough male genitals and bodily fluids on the big screen to last me a lifetime. This, on top of the general grotesque and pain-tolerating gags, make for what might be the most I’ve winced and closed my eyes during a movie. I guess it’s a testament to the guys’ judgment that one of the new pranksters this time, Rachel Wolfson, is a woman and completely clothed throughout the feature. Whether you enjoy watching these wild and crazy antics, or are just completely ap-

palled and grossed out, you can’t accuse the Jackass team of false advertising. It’s nearly impossible to enter one of these films and claim you were misled on the content. I was disgusted, impressed, enlightened, amused and entertained by how far this group of old and new friends was willing to go to pull off the dangerous stunts in Jackass Forever. One thing did go through my mind a couple of times while watching the new movie, or really any staged prank/stunt on YouTube, Vine or TikTok. It’s the age-old question: why is our natural reaction to laugh when we see someone fall, crash or get hit in the crotch? It’s been a stock gag for humor since the beginning of time and seems to still work no matter what year or visual medium. I don’t really have an answer to the question, but if you like this kind of overly elaborate slapstick comedy, Jackass Forever is right up your alley. CD

‘Jackass Forever’ Makes No False Pretenses BY MEGAN BIANCO, THE CAPISTRANO DISPATCH


ackass Forever is now the fourth theatrical release under the brand name since Jackass 3D (2010), this time with the mood of a swan song. Spike Jonze is back as producer, Jeff Tremaine as director, Johnny Knoxville as host and leader of the crew. All of the usual faces from the original show and past movies also return with the exception of Ryan Dunn, who died in 2011, and Bam Margera, who was

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022


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ON-SITE SKETCH TOUR AT THE MISSION 2 p.m. Take a tour of Mission San Juan Capistrano and sketch what you see during the trip. The tours will go over basic techniques, including how to draw architecture, shapes, one- and two-point perspective, and shading. Guests are welcome to bring a small folding stool to sit on during the tour, though art materials will be provided. The sketch tours will be held on the third Friday of the month. Cost is $5 for the general public and $3 for Mission members. Mission San Juan Capistrano, 26801 Ortega Highway, San Juan Capistrano. 949.234.1300. missionsjc.com.

SATURDAY | 19 LIVE MUSIC AT PADDY’S STATION 8-11 p.m. Grab a pint, order some fish and chips, and spend the night at a downtown Irish pub. U2 tribute band U2 Experience will perform. Paddy’s Station, 26701 Verdugo Street, Suite B, San Juan Capistrano. 949.661.3400. paddysstation.com.

SUNDAY | 20 LIVE MUSIC AT SWALLOW’S INN 2-6 p.m. Come enjoy a drink and enjoy some live music at this famous downtown bar. Big City Hillbillies will perform. Swallow’s Inn, 31786 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano. 949.493.3188. swallowsinn.com. CONCERT AT THE COACH HOUSE 7 p.m. Live music is featured at this popular South Orange County venue. Folk singer David Wilcox will perform. Tickets are $30. Doors open at 5 p.m. The Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano. 949.496.8930. thecoachhouse.com. thecapistranodispatch.com

PUBLIC NOTICES TO ADVERTISE: 949.388.7700, EXT. 111 LEGALS@PICKETFENCEMEDIA.COM PUBLIC NOTICE 2022 REDISTRICTING Every 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau revises census blocks, and local governments are required to use the new census data to draw their district lines to reflect how populations have changed. The City of San Juan Capistrano is beginning this process now, and we want your input. Schedule of Redistricting Public Hearings and Workshops • Thursday, January 20, 2022, 6:00 p.m. Community Center, 25925 Camino Del Avion • Saturday, January 22, 2022, 10:00 a.m. La Sala Auditorium, 31495 El Camino Real • Tuesday, February 1, 2022, 6:00 p.m. City Council Chamber, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Tuesday, February 15, 2022, 6:00 p.m. City Council Chamber, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Tuesday, March 1, 2022, 6:00 p.m. City Council Chamber, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Tuesday, March 8, 2022, 6:00 p.m. City Council Chamber, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Tuesday, March 15, 2022, 6:00 p.m. City Council Chamber, 32400 Paseo Adelanto

visa los bloques del censo, y los gobiernos locales tienen la obligación de utilizar la nueva información del censo para trazar las divisiones de los distritos para reflejar los cambios en la población. La ciudad de San Juan Capistrano está iniciando este proceso ahora, y queremos su opinión. Horario de las Audiencias Públicas y Talleres de Redistribución de Distritos Electorales • Jueves, 20 de enero del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Centro Comunitario, 25925 Camino Del Avión • Sábado, 22 de enero del 2022, 10:00 a.m. La Sala Auditorium, 31495 El Camino Real • Martes, 1o de febrero del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Sala del Ayuntamiento, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Martes, 15 de febrero del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Sala del Ayuntamiento, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Martes, 1o de marzo del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Sala del Ayuntamiento, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Martes, 8 de marzo del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Sala del Ayuntamiento, 32400 Paseo Adelanto • Martes, 15 de marzo del 2022, 6:00 p.m. Sala del Ayuntamiento, 32400 Paseo Adelanto Para mayor información y mapas interactivos, por favor, ingrese a sanjuancapistrano.org/Redistricting2021 949.493.1171, redistricting@sanjuancapistrano.org

For More Information and interactive maps please visit sanjuancapistrano.org/Redistricting2021 949. 493.1171, redistricting@sanjuancapistrano.org.

PUBLIC NOTICE Redistribución de Distritos Electorales 2022

Complete your required legal or public notice advertising in The Capistrano Dispatch. EMAIL legals@picketfencemedia.com CALL 949.388.7700, ext. 111

Cada 10 años, la Oficina del Censo de EE.UU. re-

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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Submit your classified ad online at thecapistranodispatch.com


E-mail your garage sale to info@thecapistranodispatch.com DEADLINE 12PM MONDAY. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

MOVING SALE - SATURDAY, FEB. 19TH Lots of Upscale Coastal & Beach Décor – Lamps, coral, shells, decorative pillows, artwork, rugs and much more. Saturday 02/19 @ 8:00am. 508 Avenida La Costa, San Clemente CA 92672. CASH ONLY!

PLACE YOUR BUSINESS CARD HERE Call Debra Wells at 949.388.7700, ext. 104 or debra@wellsadsolutions.com

HELP WANTED HELP WANTED: SHIPPING & RECEIVING TECH – STREUTER TECHNOLOGIES Streuter Technologies seeks a full time Shipping & Receiving Technician for its facility based in San Clemente, CA. Interested candidates email Samuel Salazar at samuel@stretech.com

PLACE YOUR BUSINESS CARD HERE Call Debra Wells at 949.388.7700, ext. 104 or debra@wellsadsolutions.com

Do you want to reach 24,150+ people in the SJC & RMV area? Then you need to be in The Capo Dispatch! Call us today! Call Debra at 949.388.7700 ext. 104 or debra@wellsadsolutions.com

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

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GUEST OPINION | Moments in Time by Jan Siegel

The ‘Temporary’ City Hall Is Poised to Get an Upgrade


s we all know, nothing in San Juan Capistrano ever happens quickly. For at least the past 30 years, there has been talk of replacing the “temporary” City Hall on Adelanto. But the big problem has always been money. And, of course, each year, the cost became higher and higher—so the “temporary” City Hall has been around for almost 50 years! But maybe there is light at the end of this “temporary” tunnel. City reports state, “Jamboree Housing Corporation, a full-service real estate development company with more than 30 years of experience, specializing in the construction, acquisition, and management of affordable housing for lower-income households, has submitted plans to the City to demolish the existing City Hall buildings and construct a new two-story City Hall and an adjoining three-story, 50-unit apartment building of affordable housing, which would be owned and maintained by Jamboree Housing.” In exchange for giving Jamboree Housing the right to build a City Hall and apartment complex on the cityowned property, there is no exchange of

money. Jamboree builds its units, and the city gets a new City Hall. Jamboree is a nonprofit organization that has grown into a community development leader. As the State of California keeps pushing municipalMOMENTS IN TIME ities to build more BY JAN SIEGEL affordable housing, the need for this type of cooperation between government and the private sector becomes more important. Jamboree not only addresses the affordable and low-cost housing concerns, but the homeless as well. All of their developments have on-site people to help those with mental and drug-related problems. And a certain percentage of their apartments go to veterans. Their corporate strategy “generates jobs, promotes healthy living and supportive housing.” I always say everything has a San Juan Capistrano connection. And it is true! Roger Kinoshita, Business Development Director for Jamboree, is the grandson/ grandnephew of the Kinoshita brothers who farmed the area that is now The

Ecology Center and City Community Center. One of the cost-saving features for the new City Hall is not having Council Chambers, which is space that is not continually in use. The council and the meetings needed to meet in a chamber would move to the Community Center. The city would update the sound system, add a movable dais, and upgrade the large room to accommodate more people than the current chamber. This all sounds like a win-win for the city. But like all things in San Juan Capistrano, the process is just beginning. Commissions are weighing in on all aspects of this new project. While the Design Review Committee, the Cultural Heritage Commission, and Planning Commission are in general agreement about the development, there are some concerns about parking and City Hall design—among others—that need to be addressed. But the process is moving on. And, hopefully, it will not take another 30 years to get a permanent City Hall. This is your city. This will be your City Hall. Spend a “Moment in Time” and let the City Council know how you feel about this changing project in San Juan


Capistrano. Oversight: Oops! Last month, I left off the walking tours in town by the San Juan Historical Guides. The guides meet on the train platform on Verdugo Street every Sunday at 1 p.m. The one-hour walk through the Historic District also visits the Montanez Adobe. Donations are appreciated. For further information, call 949.503.1632. You can also reach them at sanjuanhistoricalguides@gmail.com. Jan Siegel was a 33-year resident of San Juan Capistrano and now resides in the neighboring town of Rancho Mission Viejo. She served on the city’s Cultural Heritage Commission for 13 years, has been a volunteer guide for the San Juan Capistrano Friends of the Library’s architectural walking tour for 26 years and is currently the museum curator for the San Juan Capistrano Historical Society. She was named Woman of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce in 2005, Volunteer of the Year in 2011 and was inducted into the city’s Wall of Recognition in 2007. CD PLEASE NOTE: In an effort to provide our readers with a wide variety of opinions from our community, The Capistrano Dispatch provides Guest Opinion opportunities in which selected columnists’ opinions are shared. The opinions expressed in these columns are entirely those of the columnist alone and do not reflect those of The Capistrano Dispatch or Picket Fence Media. If you would like to respond to this column, please email us at editorial@thecapistranodispatch .com.





Each Sudoku puzzle consists of a 9x9 grid that has been subdivided into nine smaller grids of 3x3 squares. To solve the puzzle, each row, column and box must contain each of the numbers 1 to 9. Puzzles come in three grades: easy, medium and difficult. Level: Medium


Meet Mocha, a 6-year-old sweetie now available for adoption. Arriving at the shelter after her owner passed away, Mocha was initially very reserved. After having a chance to settle in, her true personality has begun to shine through. Mocha is quite gentle and affectionate and just loves to be petted. She would make a wonderful companion in a quieter home. If you are interested in adopting Mocha, please visit petprojectfoundation.org to download an adoption application form. Completed forms can be emailed to animalservices@scdpanimalshelter.org, and you will be contacted about making an interaction appointment.

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

Photo: Collin Breaux


JSerra Catholic High School students got to throw snowballs at each other and slide down an ice hill during a “snow day” on February 3, when more than 50 tons of ice and snow were brought into the school’s quad as a way for students to have fun. View more photos from the event at thecapistranodispatch.com. Page 16




Plenty of people ate, drank, and celebrated during the 2022 Taste of San Juan at San Juan Hills Golf Club on February 3. The event is an annual showcase for San Juan Capistrano restaurants, which offer samples and compete to win food awards for the night. Tacos, vegetarian curry, and carrot cake bites were among the available dishes. Taste of San Juan is hosted by the San Juan Capistrano Fiesta Association, which organizes the annual Swallows Day Parade, to kick off the Fiesta de las Golondrinas.



Five Vines Wine Bar


Nothing Bundt Cake



Il Sole Cucina


Sol Agave

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

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For in-game updates, news and more for all of the San Juan Capistrano high school sports programs, follow us on Twitter @SouthOCSports.

Capistrano Valley Christian, San Juan Hills Boys Basketball Earn No. 1 Seeds The CIF-SS basketball brackets were released on Tuesday, Feb. 8, and three San Juan Capistrano boys teams received playoff berths into their respective divisions. In Division 2AA, the Capistrano Valley Christian boys basketball team continued its climb in the hoops ranks and earned a No. 1 seed. The Eagles host Downey in the first round on Friday, Feb. 11, at 7 p.m. CVC went 18-7 overall this season and finished second in the increasingly tough San Joaquin League with a 6-2 league record. The Eagles’ only two league losses came by five points and nine points to league champion Fairmont Prep of Anaheim, which is in the Division 1 playoff field. Capistrano Valley Christian lost in the Division 2A quarterfinals last season and in the Division 2AA quarterfinals in 2020. The Eagles won the Division 3A championship in 2019. In Division 2A, San Juan Hills added another accolade to its best season in program history with the No. 1 seed. The Stallions were given a first-round bye and host the Aquinas-Citrus Valley winner in the second round on Tuesday, Feb. 15. San Juan Hills set a school record in wins with an overall record of 23-4 and went undefeated in league play for the first time at 6-0. The Stallions defended their first-ever league title with a back-to-back title performance in the Sea View League. In Division 1, JSerra earned an at-large berth. The Lions will travel to Oak Park, champion of the Coastal Canyon League, and play on Friday, Feb. 11, at 7 p.m. JSerra posted a 15-9 overall record and finished fourth in the Trinity League at 4-6. All six teams in the Trinity League qualified for the playoffs in their respective divisions, including league champion Mater Dei being selected as the No. 6 seed in the eight-team Open Division. The basketball second round will be played on Tuesday, Feb. 15, with the quarterfinals on Friday, Feb. 18. Semifinals are Feb. 22, and finals are Feb. 26. The Capistrano Dispatch February 11-24, 2022

Capistrano Valley Christian and San Juan Hills boys basketball both earned No. 1 seeds in their respective CIF-SS divisions to highlight the wide field of San Juan Capistrano playoff teams. Photo: Zach Cavanagh

San Juan Hills, JSerra, St. Margaret’s, CVC Soccer Teams Qualify for Both Boys, Girls Playoffs Four San Juan Capistrano soccer programs qualified their boys and girls soccer teams for the CIF-SS playoffs. On the boys side, JSerra earned its spot in the Division 1 playoffs. The Lions play at Valencia of Placentia in the first round on Friday, Feb. 11, at 5 p.m. JSerra finished 13-3-1 overall, second in the Trinity League (8-2) and No. 6 in the final Division 1 rankings. San Juan Hills’ boys, fresh off their first South Coast League championship, get a home game in Division 2. The Stallions host Beckman in the first round on Friday, Feb. 11, at 5 p.m. San Juan Hills finished 7-2-7 overall and went unbeaten in league play (4-0-4). St. Margaret’s boys team won the San Joaquin League title, and the Tartans host Cornerstone Christian in the Division 5 first round on Friday, Feb. 11, at 3:45 p.m. The Capistrano Valley Christian boys soccer team earned a wild-card spot in Division 7, but the Eagles couldn’t make the most of their home game in a 4-0 loss to El Monte on Wednesday, Feb. 9. On the girls side, both San Juan Hills and JSerra qualified for the Division 1 field. San Juan Hills repeated as South Coast League champions with a share of the league title, and the Stallions will

host Santa Margarita in a South County clash on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 5 p.m. JSerra, which finished third in the Trinity League, goes on the road for its own South County showdown at Capistrano Valley on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 5 p.m. St. Margaret’s girls team goes on the road in Division 4 to face St. Joseph of Lakewood in the first round on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 1 p.m. The Capistrano Valley Christian girls team earned a seeding in the Division 7 bracket. The No. 4 Eagles will host San Gabriel in the first round at Vista Hermosa Sports Park in San Clemente on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 1:30 p.m. The finals for boys and girls soccer will be played on Feb. 26.

Capistrano Valley Christian Highlights Girls Basketball with No. 1 Seed Two city teams made the CIF-SS girls basketball playoff field. Capistrano Valley Christian earned top marks as the No. 1 seed in Division 5AA. The Eagles will host the Academy for Academic Excellence in the first round on Friday, Feb. 11 at 5 p.m. CVC went 12-6 overall and finished second in the Academy League with a 6-2 record. In Division 2A, San Juan Hills claimed its spot with its first-ever South Coast League championship. The Stallions will

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host Beckman on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 7 p.m. San Juan Hills had previously earned three league championships in the Sea View League. The Stallions had a combined 11-29 record over five previous seasons in the South Coast League, with its best finish at 4-4. This season, San Juan Hills posted the program’s fourth 20-win season with a 20-8 overall record and went 7-1 in the South Coast League.

San Juan Hills, JSerra Girls Water Polo Win in First Round San Juan Capistrano had only two girls water polo teams in the CIF-SS playoff ranks, but both earned seedings in their respective divisions and dominant first-round victories. San Juan Hills, the No. 3 seed in Division 2, defeated Canyon of Anaheim, 16-5, at home on Wednesday, Feb. 9. The Stallions next host Downey in the quarterfinals on Saturday, Feb. 12. Downey beat Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks, 8-6. JSerra, the No. 2 seed in Division 5, went on the road and beat Pacifica of Garden Grove, 13-4, on Tuesday, Feb. 8. The Lions next traveled to Fontana for the second round on Thursday, Feb. 10. Results were not available at press time, but if JSerra won, the Lions would host the Fountain Valley-Cerritos winner in the quarterfinals on Saturday, Feb. 12. CD thecapistranodispatch.com

The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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The Capistrano Dispatch February 11–24, 2022

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