Friday, November 25, 2016

• Christmas Tree Lane Time Is Here Again

If it's Christmas time, it's also Christmas Tree Lane time too.
The day after Thanksgiving saw the official grand opening of The Original Christmas Tree Lane. You may have noticed that I've eschewed any further use of the hackneyed term, Black Friday. Allow me to suggest you follow suit. ☺

Did you know that in our area there are two "Christmas Tree Lane" events? 
The one at the outlets is known as The Original Christmas Tree Lane and the other one is at the Elks Lodge and is known just as Christmas Tree Lane
More about that at the bottom of the blog.
Two young shoppers, eagerly anticipating the first slice of cake celebrating the official opening of the Original Christmas Tree Lane event of 2016.

This is the 10th year of the event, and in that time they've raised $109,000 for local youth charities. According to their flyer, the 2015 event raised "a little over $10,000." With an all volunteer staff with no expenses incurred. 

The monies went to 
  • Student of the year scholarships
  • RYLA 
  • Boy Scouts
  • Wildomar Rotary Scholorships
  • OCTL Scholorships
  • Boys & Girls Club

There are 12 trees with values of at least $1000 that you can try to win. You do that by purchasing tickets and then placing them in receptacles near the display of your choice.
Cost of tickets.

The drawing will be held on Sunday December 18th at 4:00pm. 

Winners do NOT have to be present to win.

Among the 12 trees you'll find two that are cash trees. They come with $1000 as the key prize.

There are also trees from the Wildomar Chamber of Commerce and the Wildomar Rotary Club.

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Elks Lodge Christmas Tree Lane
Saturday December 3, 2016

There are 10 trees that will be at the Elks Lodge Christmas Tree Lane event. 

A key difference between the two events is that you need to be present to win for this one.

The ten trees include:

  • Be your Own Santa
  • Movie Night
  • Beautiful Patio
  • Santa's Computer Room
  • An old Fashioned Christmas
  • Man Tree
  • Christmas Candyland Toy Tree
  • Little Tree, Big Bucks
  • Tween Tree

Both groups are filled with good people, the proceeds are going to worthy causes, and they are a couple of weeks apart. Which means you have time to attend both... unless you have 30 plus people coming into town (like someone I know —me) and will not be available on the 18th.

Apparently, back on the yellow brick road (which is short for "before my time"), there was only one Christmas Tree Lane event in these here parts and it was held at the Elks Lodge. 

Thing is, on November 7th 2007 the old Elks Lodge was burned up in a fire and that interrupted a lot of things. Thankfully the Purple Pig survived... I'm not sure what that is, but ask a member of the Elks and they'll tell you.
The Purple Pig of BPOE 2591

I guess that the Outlets' event called dibs first for the distinction of Original or something, because they have it... even though logic would suggest it would've stayed with the Elks event since theirs has been going on for 18 years compared to just 10... but I'm not a math major so I'll just let that one go.

Baseball analogy time again
There once was a team called the Washington Senators that entered the American League in 1901. In 1960, after 60 years of mostly lousy play, they moved to Minnesota and became the Twins. 
Who knew how prescient he would turn out to be as the Senators stunk up the league for decades after this tongue in cheek quote hit the papers.

In the moving van they took all the records and stats with them. That means all of Walter Johnson's records are part of the Twins history, even if he never set foot in the land of 10,000 lakes.

That very year a new team came into Washington DC, and they were quickly dubbed the Senators. Thing is, they weren't the "Original" Senators, that group had up and moved to the midwest.

If that doesn't throw you for enough of a loop, in 1972 the new Washington Senators moved to Texas and changed their nickname to the Rangers (taking their paltry history with them too). 

Thankfully, when Washington finally got it's third team (the Nationals) in 2004 they chose not to resurrect the old Senators name. Still, if you google "When did the Washington Nationals start" you'll be informed: 1969, not 2004.

I almost forgot that the Nationals were the Montreal Expos for 35 years, before leaving the french portion of America's Hat (Canada) for the US capital.

What does any of that have to do with the two Christmas Tree Lane events? Probably nothing, but it was still cool to write about, and now you're better equipped the next time you play Trivial Pursuit.
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People have told me 'Betty, Facebook is a great way to keep in touch with old friends...'
.. At my age, if I wanted to keep in touch with old friends, I'd need a Ouija board.

— Betty White

Wildomar Rap has a Facebook page, and if you click this link you can visit it and join the throngs that like it.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

• Happy Thanksgiving 2016

I trust that all of you had a pleasant Thanksgiving this year. 
Hopefully, complete with some bird, beverage, family and football.
Though it's still going on, we at Casa de Dub Rap are having a splendid time. 

Just two middle aged people, that didn't get tangled up on the freeway, enjoying turkey, mashed potatoes, green beans, some vino and NO POLITICAL arguments (with delicate little snowflakes that can't handle reality).

I can imagine for some, it might have been a bit dicey if you have family members that insist on discussing partisan politics —even when it'll undoubtedly lead to a drunken brawl.
Gotta love SNL's Bobby Moynihan as "Drunk Uncle".

Next up is Christmas, then New Year's and then we get to start the whole shebang all over again in 2017. 

On the city calendar there are two events left. 

Breakfast with Santa, on December 10th at the fire station, and a holiday lights contest. 

Not really sure how the Christmas Lights contest works (see what I did there? I decided not to go all politically correct twice in a row). Voting starts December 20th according to the city's website.

There are three different categories
  1. Traditional Entries 
  2. Clark Griswold Entries
  3. Best Block Entries
They seem self explanatory enough to me, but if you've forgotten who Clark Griswold is, check the video below.

Here is a link to the city's webpage about the Holiday Lights Home Decorating Contest. LINK

Breakfast With Santa is an annual event that predates cityhood

It is now a Rotary Club/City sponsored event. If you haven't been to it before it's ideal for kids of all ages. (Don't you just hate that old cliche? Tough, I'm using it anyway! ☺)

There you'll find scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausage, hot chocolate, coffee, pictures with Santa, fire trucks and other things that are still in the works. 

The price is $5 for adults and $3 for kids 

Now that I'm a member of the Wildomar Rotary Club I thought I'd donate my time to making a promotional video for the event. 

Take a look at how well Mayor Bridgette Moore pegged her lines.  Though she did wear a bit of green in her scarf which got keyed out during production. You probably can't see if you are viewing it on a phone, but on a full size screen you can see the green sleigh and blue sky shining through her. 

The hills at the bottom of the scene are from an old photo taken by David A. Brown himself. They are the ones you see on the east side of the freeway not too far from the Baxter offramp. 
Below is a look at a production still during editing.

On the left is the Mayor in front of the green screen, and on the right what it looked like after I'd keyed out the green and added the effects. 
The program is Adobe Creative Suite 6. None of that nasty Creative Cloud garbage that Adobe is pushing these days for me.

There is actually another event that is happening in December too. It's a retirement party for our Chief of Wildomar police, Captain Leonard Hollingsworth. He's been top notch and has set the bar pretty high for his successor. 
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My mom makes something called green pie, which I thought was a delicacy that many people only had at Thanksgiving, but it turns out it was just Jell-O with whipped cream on it. And it's delicious.

— Bobby Moynihan

Wildomar Rap isn't a fan of green pie or turkey jello, but is a big proponent of live and let live, so dig into your favorite food and have a Happy Thanksgiving no matter how profound our differences may be.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

• New Business Opens In Wildomar: Boost Mobile

Saturday November 19th, the Wildomar Chamber of Commerce welcomed another new business to Wildomar: Boost Mobile by Pueblo Movil 2
The official ribbon cutting done by owner-operator Vicky Navarro.

I asked owner Vicky Navarro to tell me a bit about her store.

It's a Boost Mobile authorized retailer, we do anything related to Boost Mobile services — cell phones, promotions [...] all the commercials you see on TV. 

She told me that she likes to key in on personal attention/customer service. They carry the newest phones and accessories and also have prepaid options too. 

I asked how she chose wildomar for her business.

I used to live in Perris and am now in Fallbrook and I've always liked the little community here, I have a lot of family members that live here. 
Just north of the corner of Central and Palomar, about a mile west of the freeway.

The hours are Monday through Friday (closed on Tuesdays) 9:00am to 7:00pm. Saturdays from 10:00am to 7:00pm and Sundays from 9:00am to 6:00pm. 

Phone (951) 579-1930

Also on hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony were city councilmember Marsha Swanson,
Mayor Bridgette Moore and Mayor Pro-Tem Tim Walker.

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A celebrity is a person who works hard all his life to be well-known, then wears dark glasses to avoid being recognized.

— Fred Allen, 1894-1956

Wildomar Rap would rather drink glasses of dark beer than wear dark glasses, if given the option that is.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

• 2016 Mayor's Event

Last night Wildomar Mayor Bridgette Moore hosted an event at the VFW with the proceeds going to the local charity called Caring Hearts.

It was a wine pairing event where a level 1 sommelier matched wines with the various courses.

First was fruit and cheese, next was a plate of appetizers (or maybe we should call them hor d'oeuvres), followed by a shrimp cocktail, then the main course of tri tip and topped off with a dollop of vanilla ice cream and a homemade biscotto.
A look at the Tim Underdown signature tri tip. The veggies were good too. ☺

The entertainment had three parts to it. James Holland played acoustic guitar and sang most of the evening, but did make way for an eleven year old named Luana that sang two songs. She was amazing and is probably going to have a singing career in the future. 

James Holland in mid strum.

The third part of the entertainment was stand up comedian Rocky Osburn of 3rd Street Live comedy club in Temecula. 
Rocky Osborn poses with Mayor Bridgette Moore after his time up at the mic.

Also among the people that came were New Orleans Saints Super Bowl Champ Rodney Leisle; a gentle giant indeed. My hand was swallowed up like a sardine going into the mouth of an orca when we shook. 
Wildomar residents Nancy MacKell, Grace Morabito with Rodney Leisle.

What an amazing charitable event that will help Caring Hearts with their mission. Their key event is providing food and gifts to families at Christmas, but they also help others in need during the year. 

Most recently they helped pay for a few nights of lodging for the family of seven that was displaced when their home burned.
 Stewart and Bridgette Moore after the event was cleaned up.

So much entertainment, food and wine all for $25. Considering that it was for charity, it would have been a bargain at twice the price. 
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They say "clothes makes the man" and who can really deny it? Suppose it is true that "beauty only runs skin deep," isn't it deep enough for all practical purposes?

— EG Marshall, 1914-1998

Wildomar Rap agrees that clothes can make the man, but they never make the bed.

Friday, November 11, 2016

• Eagle Scout Project at Marna O'Brien Park

Addisun Rice, of Boy Scout Troop 90 and a senior at Elsinore High School, put the finishing touches on his Eagle Scout project this week.

The project dealt with installing shade structures on the two dugouts on the near ball field at Marna O'Brien park.

He started this project, at the concept level, back in May of this year and has spent about 150 hours on it so far. 

He estimates that more than 300 man hours have gone into this when you add in the time from the 30 plus volunteers that have helped him so far.
A look at the third base dugout after the taller fence posts were installed.

The volunteers came from his church, from the boy scouts, from the city, and the community.
Volunteers helping hoist the chainlink up to it's new home above the third base dugout.
The new structure on the first base dugout.
He raised about $2500 to complete this project. He told me that he's learned leadership, patience and how to plan a project out during this Eagle Scout project.
What the new shade structure looks like from shallow right field.
Addisun is due to go in front of the Eagle Board of Review around the 25th of November, that's when Eagle Scout status is officially conferred.
Key players on this project include Brad Evans (City of Wildomar), Addisun Rice, and Daniel Torres (City of Wildomar).

Thanks again to the hard work and diligence of the local scouts. 
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Diligence is the mother of good luck.

— Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790

Wildomar Rap eschews luck of all stripes while warmly embracing serendipity and her sisters fluke and chance.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

• Wildomar Schools Visit Murrieta Field of Honor

Murrieta's Rotary Club put on a spectacular display for Veteran's week at Town Center park. Wildomar's elementary schools had a chance to take the hour long tour, which consisted of seven stations.
A large assembly of Wildomar youth at Murrieta's Town Square Park.

Wildomar's Rotary Club was asked if they'd like to assist at the event, and as a new member I was happy to volunteer. 

There were seven groups (usually consisting of about 2 classes) and I was assigned to group 1, which was from Donald Graham Elementary. The kids were delightful as were the teachers, parents and the principal, Laura Konecni.

My job was to be an extra set of eyes, and to make sure no one wandered off during the approximate 90 minute trek around the park. 

It was a shotgun start (to use a golf term) where the seven groups each headed to one of the seven exhibits. At each spot the kids would listen to some background on the display and then were given a short assignment.

Sometimes drawing, other times writing information, thoughts or feelings based on what they'd seen or heard.

The stations included
  • Veterans Memorial Walls
  • California Medal of Honor Recipients (total of 66)
  • Chalk Art Sidewalk
  • Flag History (27 official American flags)
  • State Flags 
  • Local Heroes (120 fallen servicemen from Riverside and San Bernardino counties since 2003)
  • Veterans Memorial Obelisk
Check out the brief video that tries to capture the essence of an elementary school tour of the Murrieta Field of Honor.

Since each group started at a different station, in the video I put together I numbered them based on when Group 1 was at them.
A special treat, at least for the adults present, was listening to a veteran that had been on Iwo Jima during the same time period that the iconic photo of raising the flag was taken. 

This man is living history and though I was eager to shake his hand and thank him for his service, I was too taken aback to ask his name. 
If you can't see the video below, try this link instead.
This display will be up through Saturday November 12th. It's worth the effort to go and see.
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Memory, the ability to recall. For some, it is total. For others, a patchwork of light and fade. We can't always remember the things we want to. The things we'd like to forget, we so very often can't. The most unpleasant, we lock in some secret room of the mind. Hoping to close them away forever. Till some chance key unlocks the door, and let's the skeleton of remembrance loose to rattle its bones and haunt us again. 
― EG Marshall (CBSRMT 1981), 1914-1998

Wildomar Rap can't imagine the types of haunting memories that our veterans have locked away, yet continue on everyday. Thank you for your service.

•City Council Meeting November 2016

There was only one item on the agenda for this meeting, it was a street lighting acquisition update. Before that there was a presentation honoring new Eagle Scout Kedan Quintana, representatives from William Collier Elementary spoke about their school. 
Mayor Bridgette Moore and Eagle Scout Kaden Quintana.

Fire department update 

In the report Battalion Chief Todd Phillips mentioned the fires that displaced the Deanna Ramirez family and burned El Comal restaurant. 

The cause of fire at the Ramirez residence was undetermined. El Comal is still under investigation but he had this to say about it.
My understanding is we got a really good jump on that for several reasons. One, the business owners had come in that morning  to open up the restaurant and smelled natural gas. So they contacted the Gas Company. The Gas Company got there and smelled smoke and noticed the fire and reported it. Right about that time a sheriff's deputy also saw the smoke coming from the roof and reported it.

Battalion Chief Todd Phillips

Link to blog about El Comal fire

Chief Phillips also spoke about an accident on the freeway that involved one of the fire trucks. 
On October 2nd, Cal Fire Riverside County firefighters responded to a non injury traffic collision, on Interstate 15 southbound north of Bundy Canyon. Engine 94 from the Canyon Hills station was assisting the parties moving their vehicles to the shoulder of the freeway when the engine was struck by a vehicle traveling southbound. This collision involved another vehicle, which was struck, which resulted in two minor injuries and a moderate injury. 

Nobody was seriously injured.

Battalion Chief Todd Phillips

Public Comments
• Glenn Copple invited people to attend the Original Christmas Tree Lane ribbon cutting at the Lake Elsinore Outlets on Friday, November 25th at 10:00am.
• Kenny Mayes urged the city to get onto social media, mentioned his concerns about Measure Z not being equally applied to apartment/condo complexes and insufficient library fees on new construction.
I agree with Kenny on the social media thing. I understand that the city staffers are already being worked hard (as a taxpayer I wouldn't want it any other way) but having a facebook page would not take anymore time than sending out the emails already does. It doesn't have to be elaborate. Just an update a couple of times a week.

As far as Ken's concerns about Measure Z, I guess he has rejected the city's explanation of how those monies are being collected from apartments.

• Andy Morris invited residents to discover the Rotary Club.

3.1 Street Light Acquisition
This is one of those wonky topics that the average resident won't be too concerned with, though it's a great move that will save us all a lot of money over time.

In short, Wildomar will be buying the street light poles from SoCal Edison and retrofitting them with LED bulbs (requiring the city borrow $1.7 million). This is being done by all the surrounding cities and the cost savings will be substantial over time.

A 30 year cash flow model of costs to purchase, retrofit, maintain and finance yields a net savings to the City of $650,000 at year 15, $1.9 million at year 20 and $5.8 million at year 30. 

Below is a link to a video that was played for the city council to demonstrate the differences between the current lighting and the proposed lighting. If you can't see the video, try clicking here.
The city council members will be taking tours in a test area to see the different lighting options available. In January this item hits the council again and more will be learned then.

City Manager Report
A special city council meeting will be held on Monday December 12th to simultaneously say goodbye to Bob Cashman and swear in new councilmember Dustin Nigg.

At the meeting Bob Cashman will give a short presentation about his years working on the behalf of Wildomar. 

Added to the Community Calendar is a Holiday Lights contest. If interested in participating in this, give the city a call as at the publishing of this blog the link hasn't been created yet. 951-677-7751

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Do not say a little in many words but a great deal in a few.
― Pythagoras

Wildomar Rap often strays when trying to implement Pythagoras' wisdom.

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