North County mayors, supervisors vs. SANDAG’s new proposed tax on driving

With I-15 traffic moving at a crawl in the background, North County leaders Wednesday morning gathered in the patio outside of the Ventana restaurant atop Escondido’s Lexus dealership to condemn a proposal that surfaced last Friday at the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG): to adopt a new form of taxation  that would charge drivers for using busy streets and […]

Renovation begins on new Ritz Theater

Renovation has begun on the corner building of the Ritz theater on Grand Avenue, and scaffolding is up throughout the interior of the Ritz. Demolition and construction is being done by Erickson-Hall Construction Co,, which is based in Escondido.  According to Pastor Tim Spivey of the New Vintage Church, which owns the property and is renovating and repurposing the 80-year-old […]

Sam Abed: “My goal is to keep the 50th District Republican”

Note: This is part of a series of articles about candidates for local office. Candidates who would like to be interviewed are invited to contact the editor at editor@times-advocate.com. “I got out of politics and I thought I’d enjoy my real estate business very well and making good money, but things have changed in the last few months on the […]

“Moon Landing Celebration” concert will celebrate the 50th anniversary

The world premiere of the choral work “One Small Step”  by local composer Stephen Sturk and lyricist Charles Anthony Silvestri and conducted by John LoPiccolo will be performed by Escondido Choral Arts Saturday at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido Concert Hall. The concert begins at 7 p.m.  This week I sat down with composer Stephen Sturk, who lives […]

Channel cat planting scheduled for July 19

Lake Wohlford Park hours: 6 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. (open seven days a week) dock closes: 7 p.m. Last Plant:  1,000 lbs. of Channel Catfish Wednesday July 3. Next Plant:  1,000 lbs. of Channel Catfish Friday July 19. Water temperature: At surface 72.86 f., 4.57 D.O. @ 10’ 73.76 f., 4.27 D.O. Water level:  Low level, private water craft are […]

Emergency Response

California is no stranger to natural and man-made emergencies. The recent quakes in Kern and San Bernardino Counties are another reminder that living in the Golden State has a price. The State Constitution grants immense power to the Governor to deal with emergencies. The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (OES), which began as the State War Council in 1943, coordinates […]


The other day I received an email that referenced my ‘opinion’ piece. I probably should have noted in my first column that my comments will be more of a collage of opinion, commentary and anecdotes from my 46 years as an Escondido resident. So, here goes issue three. Last time I said I would talk briefly about a comment received […]

Lord save me from oddball spellings: or a modicum of monikers


A few decades or so ago we entered the age of the oddball spelling of names. So that now it is actually unusual to find that women’s names are spelled the way we would have found them traditionally.  I guess “tradition” is the key word here. We must avoid tradition at all costs. No Mabels, Abigails or Ethels for us! […]

Writing a profile of a candidate is not an endorsement

I would think it isn’t necessary to say this, but here it is: When The Times-Advocate publishes a profile of a candidate for public office, like, say, the Board of Supervisors, or U.S. Congress or the city council, that is not an endorsement of that particular candidate. In the case of the 50th Congressional district, for instance, it is our […]


Editor, Times-Advocate:  Re: “Retired Navy Seal Larry Wilske: ‘right fit’ for conservative 50th Congressional seat. That was a nice political boost for Chief Larry Wilske—front page with a color photo no less.  Unfortunately, the effect was lost on some of us by his apparent thought that a hoped-for Congressional run would be enhanced by a Western stance holding a rifle.  […]