Friday, November 27, 2020

• Local Charity Comes Through on Thanksgiving

Here is an encouraging story for Thanksgiving weekend, of local charitable works in action... as told to me (through email) by VFW Post 1508's very own Cari Gardner. 

My name is Cari Gardner and I am the President of the VFW Auxiliary in Wildomar. I just wanted to send out a BIG Thank You to Albertsons in Wildomar on Clinton Keith. 

Cari was honored earlier this year by the MWCoC as Wilomar Citizen of the Year.

You may know about the charitable event they do for the community each year they pick a non-profit to receive what they call Turkey Bucks which essentially equals to Thanksgiving Dinner with all the trimmings. 

This year we were lucky enough to receive those dinners in the amount of OVER $8000 in dinners. 

The dinners were donated to Caring Hearts for Veterans and Community, which is a non-profit that is one of the committees in our Post at VFW Post 1508. 

Here are a few pictures that were taken of us picking up the dinners and a picture of us taking some of them to March Air Reserve Base.  


Pictured below is VFW Commander Roger Miller, VFW Life Members Curtis Gardner and Mike Sheehan, and Life member of the Auxiliary Al Castorena. 

 

Also, pictured is Albertsons Store Manager and the Front end Manager. Pictures taken by Isabella Schieffer, President of Caring Hearts for Veterans and Community.


https://www.facebook.com/VFWpost1508

 

#wildomarVFW

Saturday, October 31, 2020

• Wildomar Beautification Program Part 2

It seems that I just did a blog on this topic, on September 19th to be exact... so what could have happened since then to merit an update? 
The Halloween edition of the Wildomar Beautification Volunteers. Among them was Wildomar Elementary School principal Mr. Hoffman (far right). I asked him for his thoughts and he said, "Helping out for an hour to start your weekend... it just makes your weekend go better."
Well, I wanted to let you know how very easy it is to fill out the waiver online to get your 10 free orange bags per month. I'd been procrastinating like the rest of you. 😅

The process is very short. Thing is, you do have to give them some personal info. Super secret things like, your name and address... but if you guard those like the Coca-Cola recipe, then just buy your own bags. 

Use this link to quickly jump to the waiver page

Below you'll see the various screenshots once you get to the city's waiver page. It was easy on the phone and a laptop. 

Add caption





That was very quick to complete. 👌

Literally under five minutes. 😊

The next step was to go to the cemetery during regular business hours during the week and request the 10 large orange bags (which you can get monthly).

I asked Bridgette Moore (one of the primary movers behind the Wildomar Beautification efforts) the following: 

Assuming you get reelected next week, what kinds of things would you like to see happen with the Wildomar beautification program in 2021 and beyond?

"I'd like to see the program expand and get more volunteers, and also start a Wildomar beautification committee; staffed with volunteers from our community. They can plan clean ups, they can plan getting sponsorships. I'd also like to branch out into getting the utility boxes wrapped."       

I'd like to suggest a little friendly competition between the various city council districts in town once we get to 2021.

C'mon fellow council members, wha'tcha waitin' fer? the water's fine, come on in! 😁

If you'd like more information, please visit the Wildomar Beautification Volunteer facebook page at this link.

 •                •                •

Fairness is a matter of post positions at the race track. 

– EG Marshall (CBSRMT)

Wildomar Rap is the racetrack.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2020

• Wildomar Gets New Bus Shelter

The northern end of Wildomar, better known as Sedco, got a new bus shelter today at the corner of Elberta and Mission Trail.

Getting the shelter in place.
If you're thinking, "I can think of another 20 places in town that could use a shelter," let me give you the hitch involved first.

This whole operation took less than an hour. 

Thanks to the ADA laws, the shelters must have wheelchair access. You're probably thinking, "Sounds good to me, what's the problem?"

Once last look at the shelterless corner.

2020 RTA Chair Bridgette Moore gives the bus shelter a looking over before it's put into place.
RTA's Jim Kneepkins chats with Bridgette Moore.
Well, if you've seen other bus stops in Wildomar, you've noticed that many are just off the side of the road in the dirt. To install a modern bus shelter, there must be proper footings and wheelchair access.
This is one of dozens of examples of our rural bus stops.
That can change the cost but many dozens of thousands of dollars... which makes them cost prohibitive in much of Wildomar.
RTA Chair Bridgette Moore lends a hand to get the shelter installed... or it's a photo-op... you decide. 😁

Anywho, thanks to the tireless efforts of Bridgette Moore (who has been Wildomar's RTA representative for 10 years), 2020's RTA Chair, Wildomar has this new bus shelter.

Next on Bridgette's radar is getting that corner in better shape. 

Sunday, October 25, 2020

• Trunk or Treat 2020

Sadly the yearly Trunk or Treat event, which is one of the most popular park happenings in town, had to be cancelled along with most of 2020's events.

However, that didn't stop Wildomar parks team from coming up with an alternative: Drive In Laser Show.

One of the many decorations that adorned Marna O'Brien park.

Fun and lively tunes were played by Robert Walker of Heyday Events to lasers overhead and some videos on three different screens. 

I didn't get a lot of great photos of the event. For all the wonders a smartphone camera is capable of, capturing lasers at night (or anything else in the dark) doesn't seem to be among them. 😁

A look at the early set up. The white vacuum exhaust looking hose was where mist was made. The mist was to give the lasers something to bounce of off.

There were two shows

The first started at 7pm and the second show started at 9pm.

What may not have been apparent is that this type of show is new, a work in progress. Heyday Events has put on countless shows over the years, but drive in laser shows are a new frontier and a lot was learned from the first show to the second show.

Another great decoration... that in another pic had his purple horns sticking out of my head... just look below. 😳

I'm telling you, those purple horns are *not* part of my costume. 😁
The second show had a lot more audience participation. From horn honking, light flashing and having people do their best Halloween scary laughs, werewolf impersonations and screams. It was so much fun to be part of. 

The first show was over by 7:45pm. I didn't see any cars lining up for the second show. I was starting to think it was going to be a bust. 

Then it was like a scene out of Field of Dreams....and out of nowhere a line of cars appeared. 😁

A great ending scene from a great movie.

Not as great an angle as the movie, but still impressive.

Waiting to be checked in for the 9pm show.

Thanks again to the dedicated team that makes Wildomar's park events so much fun.

•                •                •

A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others.

– The Wizard of Oz

If Wildomar Rap were judged by that metric, forget a simple snowball, it would be one of those days that the entire Winter Olympics could be held in Hades.

This blog was produced for viewing on a desktop or a laptop. Though it's been optimized for smartphones, the formatting can look odd on a smartphone or if you get this delivered through email (such as missing video links). Link to proper format.

 


Tuesday, October 20, 2020

• Baxter Village Revised Plot Plan Hotel and MOB, Are You Down With Them?

There is only one item on the October 21, 2020 Planning Commission agenda: Baxter Village Revised Plot Plan Proposal

Before getting into this let me start off with a few housekeeping issues. 

Wildomar Rap's graphic from July 2016.

It's been determined that I live too close to this development (within 1000 feet) to participate in my elected official capacity. Therefore, since I've recused myself from it, I can still weigh in as a resident. 

The second bit of housekeeping is, due to the Brown Act, I suggest that any member of the city council click out now if you're reading this. Also, if you're too stubborn to click out, understand that I am NOT lobbying for you to vote in any particular way. 

Vote how you truly believe any development on the former Brown House property will benefit the community for generations to come. It's not about the council, it's about the community's long term needs.

With that firmly established, let's proceed. 

Back in 2016 a mixed use project was approved (the scoping meeting for this development is covered in a Jan 2015 blog). It included residential and commercial. A total of 66 single family homes, and 204 apartments on the residential side, and 70,000sf of retail. 

So why hasn't any of that been built? 

If you go back and look at every time Baxter Village is mentioned in this blog you'll see that Clinton Keith Village (where the new 7-11 is, and the soon to open Grocery Outlet) was mentioned back in 2016, and they've not been impeded. 

So what's the hang up in that field just to the north of Wildomar Trail? 

I'm sure that there are as many excuses as there are illegal mattresses dumped there, so who knows the real "why" of it all, but... speaking as a resident only... looks like bad business practices to me.

I'm not in the development business, so I probably am missing how going to the trouble of getting a project approved, to then just sit on it, is actually a wiser move than building what was approved on paper.

Best part is, this same company has more than one project in the same 'limbo' status in Wildomar. 

I've asked this before: What are they waiting for... another recession?

Seriously, imagine the profits they would have had if they'd have just developed the properties they control and got on with business. 

But, as I already pointed out, I don't understand the fine art of creating a development on paper, getting the community excited about it, then just having it languish in never-never land instead of pouring concrete and pounding nails.

So much time went by that they needed an EOT (extension of time). Now, because something is amiss in their grand scheme, they've decoupled the project into smaller pieces.

I know that it's just a concept drawing, but talk about a lack of understanding that this is what's presented to the planning commission as what their future Wildomar hotel would look like. Seriously, looks like a big Eff-U to the residents that live anywhere near it, or even those that would drive past it.

The residential portions, which were approved long ago, are NOT on the agenda. They are staying as is. The only change being sought is removing the retail (which at one time was said to include several restaurants) and instead put in a MOB (Medical Office Building) and a FIVE story hotel.

Let me digress for a moment

If you're of the mindset that suggests the land should be left in its "natural state" you're not thinking through this very well. I'm a proud American citizen, and believe in landowner's rights... presuming that they are playing by the rules, which means developing their land according to the local dictates.

The approved project would greatly alter the area. Welcome to real life. Anyone that lives in Wildomar is on land that would have been vacant 130 years ago, and to suggest that your home is ok, but others aren't ok is a waste of everyone's time.

I'm fully in favor of this land being developed. What I'm not in favor of is going off the board, away from the already approved general plan, and seeking to bring something in that is completely out of character for the area.

Do we need a hotel?

Of course we need a hotel. Anyone that suggests driving down to Murrieta, or Lake Elsinore for lodging is acceptable is being ridiculous. I have family that has had to stay in other cities when visiting, and that's embarrassing. 

Not to mention the time that my house was flooded and my choice was to take lodging in Murrieta, or hole up in one of the non flooded rooms. The obvious choice would have been to stay in a hotel in my own town. Yes, we need a hotel.

However, we don't need a hotel in that location. 

The whole point of a planning commission (and then city council review) is to have well planned development, and not some hodge-podge patchwork quilt looking community because out of town developers built willy-nilly as they pleased.

I'd like to see a show of virtual hands of all those involved that actually live in our city... or even in a neighboring city. My guess is that there are few to none that would fit that description.

Do we need a MOB in that location?

Nothing says "I love you" quite like two overly modern buildings plopped right smack dab in the heart of rural Wildomar... no matter how garish and out of place they are. 🙄

I'd like to see the original plan built as was promised back in 2016. Still, I'm a realist and if the right amount of horse trading can be accomplished (where the city feels like we've gotten an exceptional deal), I could envision accepting the MOB... but to me it would need to be pushed much closer to the freeway compared to what I've seen in the drawings.

Ditch the parking along the freeway, and push the MOB snug up against it first, then come talk to me. 

But I'd only agree to that if most of the original retail was included, and slated to be built before the MOB... or at least concurrently.

I just hope that the PC and the CC understand that they are in the driver's seat, and let the applicant come with hat in hand... and not the other way around.

To quote a friend of mine, there's a double whammy by bringing in a MOB and removing retail

Retail generates sales taxes, and with the additional 1 penny per dollar added by 2018's Measure AA that is a significant amount of money.

An MOB costs the city money in emergency services. I don't have the figures with me, and hopefully they'll be part of the staff report at the meeting, but the city saved a large amount of money when Kaiser's Urgent Care left town for Murrieta.

Removing a revenue generator for a something that will cost emergency services funds seems like an easy no vote to me.

How about the hotel?

Hotels can generate TOT (Transient Occupancy Tax), but that's only when a room is rented. I don't have any studies that include Wildomar, but have seen one from Murrieta that suggested we already have enough lodging in the general area as to not support the need for more rooms at this time.

I mentioned earlier that we do need a hotel in Wildomar. One is already approved (without a vendor that is) just north of Cornerstone Church on Monte Vista Drive.

There is another pad that's a perfect location for a hotel and it's not near residential areas. It's just south of city hall, and east of Los Reyes restaurant.

I've been hearing about this location since the day I started attending city meetings back in 2013.

I'm sorry that the developers haven't figured out how to market their approved project after all these years, but their bad business practices burden shouldn't be placed on the community of Wildomar's shoulders to carry. 

What can you do?

If you'd like to have your voice heard (pro or con) about this project I see two options for you.

First, write an email and ask that it be delivered to the city council. It will be coming to the city council in the November meeting. You can ask for it to be distributed to the planning commissioners too, but that window is closing fast.

mbassi@cityofwildomar.org

Second, you can participate with a public comment. The meetings are zoom based at the moment and that means you just need to log on and ask to speak. It's not that difficult, and don't be nervous... we're all neighbors and your views are appreciated. 

The directions for participation can be found at this link.

One last thought about the management group haphazardly piloting this ill fated development

For years they've refused to fence their property which has lead to it being perennially known as Baxter Off Road Track... plus the Baxter Village free dump.

I don't measure if a person is a nice guy by the number of teeth they display in a smile, that measurement is determined by how good of a community member they are in practice.

I've seen no demonstrable reason to categorize them as good neighbors. I get it, they're a business venture and they're there for the bottom line... I just hope the powers that be can also recognize the obvious.

If they were there for the community they wouldn't be seeking to put in a five story monstrosity hotel in that location, that will end up being the sorest thumb sticking out for miles around, and they would have fenced their property like the field immediately to the south did more than 10 years ago.

Oops, I may have gotten a bit opinionated in this blog... but I'm not done... look what's coming next. 😲


Special Bonus Segment

Below you'll find letters from the community that were sent into the planning director. They can be found in the agenda packet. 

I'll remove the letter writer's names because below is a crash course on how NOT to write to people. 

Seriously, whoever wrote this garbage should be ashamed on so many different levels that it's not even funny. 

I've copied and pasted them as they were in the agenda packet.

---

Jasmine if you don't live in wildomar. Keep you and your stupid money grubbing ideas that don't even fit this area in San Diego.i personally know several people in wildomar that are real residence here .wildomar elementary ELSINORE Jr hi .elsinore hi 46 + years born and raised .wgo would not welcome you or any of your family members HERE in this community.especially if you do not actually live hear .bug off girl .how EVER if you do live here you were actually born and raised hear you mom and dad are actually real homesteaders here then I st and corrected.BUT A.HOTEL ARE YOU SERIOUS ARE YOU SOME SORT OF ANTI GREEN FREAK WHO ENJOYS DESTROYING BEAUTIFUL OPEN LAND TO BRING MORE DRUG ADDICTS WHO LOCK THEM SELVES IN HOTEL ROOMS DO DO THEIR PERVERTED CRAP WITH UNDERAGED KIDS .YOU MUST HAVE $$$$ SIGNS ON YOU BRAIN.YOU ACTIONS THROUGH YOU IDEAS SPEAK FOR THEM SELVES.YOU HAVE NO REAL INTERESTS. IN WHATS GOOD AND FITS IN HERE

---

Hello Mathew.my comment was referring to the Baxter road medical Center and hotel .this is my home I don't mean BORN else were then moved here .this has wildomar people passed off .and I mean pissed off ...hotel bull crap medical center ..this valley has plenty of medical. So the counsel members want to invite added pour air quality .and add more undue and undeserved mental stress due to heavy traffic.some are already exasperated with the bullcrap heavy traffic as it is .when MC donaldss started to prep for their mission. Location. Way back in the day several of the residence. From grand ave and all around the lake sedco wildomar .disruped for months progress on the site .removing survey stakes bench marks elevation hubs Time after time after time popping heavy equip tires time after time.damaging cooling system and hydraulic systems time after time on the heavy equip.removing stake on foundation forms time after time untieing REBAR steel in footings time after time. The dirt work contractor pulled his heavy equipment off the job after spending thousands on tire replacement and replacing cooling system and hydraulic line and hydraulic pumps . who's pocket get lined. IV been in the construction trade well over 40 yrs many of my friends are general contractors and couple are developers .i fully and completely understand the games played pockets being lined disregard for over enveloping the community with reckless disregard for residence peace of mind by creating undue and undeserved mental stress to in tire families from young to old for the sakeOF a greedy for gain MENTALITY.there are many people with their horses and small animal farms . build an EQUESTRIAN center combo comunity center slash spots park instead of a bunch of dam strangers sleeping In a motel driving back and forth all hours of the nite disrupting what peace and quiet wildomar has left. The developer most likely live on a big peace of land .no immediate neighbors nice and peacefull no light pollution. He probably has a little machine that his nanny uses to remove the paper off the toiltel paperrolls then it replaces 100 dollar bills on it so his brat grand kids can wipe their asses with 100 dollar bills after they have a bowel movement.rich money greedy people ruining the natural environmental a DIFFERENT community other than their .people are tired of it can't y'all see the unrest in our country right now massive protests dam liters and rioters.by the hundreds of thousands.wildomar dosent want or need unrest added air pollution added undue undeserved mental stress cause by heavy traffic. I had to use rough language to get this point properly expressed hepe wildomar keep the peace

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Like we don't have enough pour air quality and traffic problems as it is .so bassi how much money is the developer want to line you and your families pocket with.screw the developer and his family members peace of mind AND I MEAN EVERY MEMBER FROM THE VERY OLDEST TO THE VERY YOUNGEST.THEY COULD CARE LESS ABOUT OUR PEACE OF MIND AND MENTAL HEALTH .MORE TRAFFIC WILL ABSOULUTLY CAUSE ADDED MENTAL STRESS TO WILDOMAR RESIDENCE.YOU WANT MAJOR PROTESTS IN OUR PEACEFULL CITY .FINDING OUT WHERE THE DEVELOPERS PRIVATE RESIDENCE IS CAN BE VERY EASY TO LOCATE FOR THE SOUL PURPOSE OF DISRUPTING HIS FAMILIES PEICE OF MIND. AND MENTAL HEALTH .WEEKLY HARASSMENT OF HIS FAMILIES PEACE AND QUIET.LET SEE HOW HE LIKES IT .HOWEILL HIS FAMILY MEMBERS LIKE THEIR PEACE OF MIND AND QUIET DISRUPTED .ASK HIM .HEAVY EQUIPMENT CONTRACTOR WOULD BE AXASTERBATED WITH THOUSANDS IN TIRE REPLACEMENT AND COOLING SYSTEM REPAIR COST AND HYDRALIC REPLACEMENT COST LEAVE THE WILDOMAR PEOPLE ALONE.MR DEVELOPER STAY HOME GO SOME WHERE ELSE

---

If I'm wrong, and you think the emails above are pretty cool and make logical and reasonable points... yikes! Seriously folks, it's not that difficult to be nice and treat each other with some dignity while making a cogent point.

If you think I'm a jerk for pointing out the obvious, then put "vote against Joseph" on your bucket list.

•                •                •

I grew up like a neglected weed - ignorant of liberty, having no experience of it.

– Harriet Tubman

Wildomar Rap pulls all weeds except purslane... that's a superfood and tastes pretty good sautéed with onions and garlic in olive oil. Wild mustard too. 


This blog was produced for viewing on a desktop or a laptop. Though it's been optimized for smartphones, the formatting can look odd on a smartphone or if you get this delivered through email (such as missing video links). Link to proper format.

Monday, October 19, 2020

• City Council Meeting October 2020

Being that I was out of town for this Zoom meeting, and didn't have time directly afterward to write a blog... this edition will be somewhat scant compared to other City Council recaps.

For some reason, Councilman Joseph Morabito appeared to be more orange than President Trump at times. 😁

TOP NEWS FROM THE MEETING

  • New Businesses Ready to Open Shortly
  • Canyon View Park Discussed Again
  • Halloween Laser Show Sold Out

The biggest news, in my estimation, was learning about all the new businesses that are coming to Wildomar.

During EDD Kimberly Davidson's presentation we learned about several new businesses that are getting ready to open. Grocery Outlet (Clinton Keith Village), Dreamy Nails (Clinton Keith Village), All-Star Physical Therapy (Renaissance Plaza), WingStop (Wildomar Square), Accelerated Urgent Care (Wildomar Square), Palm Thai Cuisine (Wildomar Square), Montague Brothers Coffee.

This ownership group is looking to be a solid member of our Wildomar community. 
Located in Clinton Keith Village (where the new 7-11 is located).
Located across from Yellow Basket.
Located between Jersey Mikes and Dunkin Donuts.
Between Angelo's Brick Oven Pizzeria and Taco Bell.
A new family run coffee shop going in next to Los Molcajetes on Palomar.
I look forward to patronizing all the above businesses... save perhaps the urgent care. 😁

Canyon View Park (Pit Park)
Councilman Ben Benoit brought this subject up again. You many remember the 11 year old girl that spoke to the city council back in February of 2019. 


During a public comment, she spoke about the need for a park in her area, and that there was already a shuttered park right there.
"A lot of kids live here and we would love a place to run around and play. It would be really great if you would consider letting us build up this abandoned park into a useable space for us kids to play."           —Indiana Purkiss, February 13, 2019
There are no promises, and all good things in a city will cost money, but the first exploratory steps are being taken to see if anything can be done with this site for the betterment of the neighborhood and community. 

Of course there were plenty of other items discussed, but I suggest that you watch the video of the meeting to take them in... other than the city's Halloween event being sold out (though the cost was gratis).

There will be two showtimes for the Halloween laser light show that will accommodate about 80 cars each... but if you didn't get your tickets already, it's too late for this year. 
Perhaps there will be a way to live stream this on the city's Facebook page?

•                •                •

“Be curious, not judgmental.”

– Walt Whitman

Wildomar Rap has mastered what the cat hasn't... not being curious, and hasn't lost the ability to be judgmental when necessary.


This blog was produced for viewing on a desktop or a laptop. Though it's been optimized for smartphones, the formatting can look odd on a smartphone or if you get this delivered through email (such as missing video links). Link to proper format.

Sunday, October 11, 2020

• Fire At Corydon and Grand

Up close look of the fire fighters soaking the premises.

The fire at the old home near the corner of Grand and Corydon was called in around quarter till 10am Sunday morning, and was witnessed by many passersby where the house was fully engulfed. 

I watched as fire crews used chainsaws to cut back the trees/shrubs that grew all over the front of this house.

Removing some of the vegetation that covered the house.
Mayor Pro-Tem Bridgette Moore was on scene within minutes since she literally lives around the corner. She alerted the city staff to lend a hand when it came to who may have lived there.

Grand was blocked from Wells to Corydon for a couple of hours.

Without getting into particulars, this property has been on code enforcement's radar for years. I imagine it was quite a sight when the Almond trees were still full of life, but when I moved here in 2001 it seemed that half were already dead. You can see in a wide angle shot that some of the long dead almond trees had been cut down and cleared away.
The masonry portion of the home remained up. 

The fire department did a secondary search for human remains and found nothing. I was told that before the fire department was finished the owner came walking up (good news) which will negate the need for RSO to return after the location once things have cooled with a cadaver dog.

A wide angle view.


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