Local News

South/East County Happenings, Feb. 11

Chula Vista online store now open

Chula Vista residents are proud of their city, and now they can show their pride with a variety of merchandise bearing the city’s logo. First came face masks branded with the city logo, followed by variations of the logo spotted on hats, T-shirts and tattoos. So the city opened an online store at The store is accessible 24/7 from anywhere in the world to buy items such as T-shirts, face masks, baby onesies, stickers, skateboards and more with a blue or white version of the logo. Proceeds from all sales benefit Chula Vista public entities that support the community, including programs offered by the Chula Vista Animal Care Facility, the Chula Vista Public Library Foundation, and Friends of Chula Vista Parks and Recreation. Funding to these nonprofits provides free and reduced programming, materials and supplies, benefiting people and animals.

Upcoming meetings

City councils: Chula Vista, 5 p.m. Tuesday; Coronado, 4 p.m. Tuesday; Imperial Beach, 5 p.m. Wednesday; National City, 6 p.m. Tuesday
School boards: Coronado Unified School District, 4 p.m. Feb. 18; Lakeside Union Elementary School District: 6 p.m. today ; Lemon Grove School District, 6 p.m. Tuesday; Santee School District, 7 p.m. Tuesday; South Bay Union School District (Imperial Beach), 6 p.m. today

Valentine’s Day cooking class Sunday

Couples can celebrate Valentine’s Day by creating a three-course brunch meal in their homes, taught through a virtual livestream by professional chef Christina Ng of Chinita’s Pies and Berry Good Food. The live class, which starts at 11 a.m. Sunday 2/14, is sponsored by Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center in National City and will be interactive for participants to ask questions and engage with Chef Christina. On the menu: Winter Inspired Caprese Salad with Herb Pesto Shakshuka with Handmade Flatbread Lemon & Berry Fool for Dessert. Cost is $35 for the class; some add-ons are available. Proceeds support Olivewood’s health equity, food access, and community building programs. Register at Visit

Diaper distribution coming Saturday

Miracle Babies, a nonprofit that seeks to unite families with their critically ill newborns in the neonatal intensive care unit by providing transportation and support services, is hosting drive-through diaper distributions from 9-11 a.m. Saturday and March 13 at the National City Public Library, 1401 National City Blvd. Free diapers will be available on a first-come, first-registration basis to all San Diego families in need. Diapers will be loaded directly into vehicles. Registration for each distribution closes at noon the day before, or until supplies last. Diaper donations are welcome and accepted at all distributions, which are sponsored by Frank Toyota. To register for a diaper distribution or to donate, visit:

Free heart-healthy classes next week

To celebrate February as Heart Month, many of the fitness tenants at Otay Ranch Town Center are offering free classes and promotions between Saturday and Feb. 20. All classes and programs are outdoor, socially distant activities following public health mandates. Classes include Salsa Dance at Deseo Dance Studios, full-body circuit at OrangeTheory Fitness, San Diego Gymnastics sessions, HIIT for Your Heart and Heart Yoga at Namaste Fitness, and a free one-week membership at Title Boxing. Find a full schedule at; scroll down to find the “Heart Healthy Workouts.” Otay Ranch Town Center is at 2015 Birch Road, Chula Vista.

Santee offers help with paying rent

The Santee City Council has approved a Rental Assistance Grant Program to help residents who are struggling to pay rent because of the coronavirus pandemic. Interested residents will be asked to complete an application and provide documentation to show how they have been affected by the pandemic. The rental assistance application period is open now and will close at midnight Sunday. The city has selected Home Start and Interfaith Shelter Network to administer the program. Both organizations are local nonprofits that have experience with helping families in need. To apply, visit Visit or email; visit or email The city of Santee can also answer questions emailed to

Sign up to become a La Mesa Tree Steward

Tree San Diego joins the city of La Mesa in helping implement its tree planting initiative by showing residents how to become certified Tree Stewards. A Tree Steward is a volunteer who has completed the Tree San Diego Tree Steward Certification Program. Tree Stewards are trained and certified in various skills that they can use to preserve and enhance their neighborhood trees. The city will be planting 350 trees throughout La Mesa. Sign up for the online program and learn how to properly plant, care for, monitor and share trees in your neighborhood. Certification includes training in tree stewardship and urban forest benefits, as well as tree species selection, planting, watering and tree health; tree removal and reuse; landscape water conservation and community leadership. Instruction modules will be made available weekends in February 2021. Register at

FSD opens mobile pantry site in Santa Ysabel

Feeding San Diego has established a new mobile pantry in rural San Diego County that will provide much-needed assistance to the Iipay Nation and surrounding communities, including many low-income households, farmers, migrant workers and seniors. The Mobile Pantry Program will hold regular distributions in Santa Ysabel in partnership with Indian Health Council from 10-11 a.m. every second and fourth Tuesday at 110 1/2 School House Canyon Road. Each distribution will serve 100 households. For the past several years, San Diego Gas & Electric has been a major supporter of Feeding San Diego’s Mobile Pantry Program. It recently introduced Feeding San Diego to the Indian Health Council to start disaster distributions associated with the wildfires. SDG&E funded the Mobile Pantry Program, which includes disaster response distributions, at $25,000. Visit

School district seeks committee members

The La Mesa-Spring Valley School District is seeking volunteers to serve on its inaugural Citizens Bond Oversight Committee, as required by state law after the passage of Measure V, a $136 million construction bond. The committee will inform the public about the district’s spending of bond proceeds and present an annual report to the school boardy. Find the application at; application deadline is Feb. 19. Contact Measure V Communications and Outreach Coordinator Ursula Leimbach at

El Cajon seeks ‘Youth of Year’ nominees

The El Cajon Teen Coalition is accepting nominations for its 2020 “Youth of the Year” award, which recognizes outstanding students who went above and beyond to serve the El Cajon community this past year. The city council will honor a middle school student and a high school student. The award is based on leadership, community service, commitment, and the value and impact of the community service done in 2020. Nominees must live in El Cajon and/or attend an El Cajon school. Find applications at or at recreation centers. Application deadline is March 26. Call Fa’amalo “Malo” Lutu at (619) 441-1555 or email

Blood drives

The San Diego Blood Bank hosts these blood drives:

8 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Saturday, Alpine Women’s Club parking lot, 2156 Alpine Blvd., Alpine. Cosponsored by Kiwanis Club of Alpine, Alpine Women’s Club, Queen of Angels Catholic Church and VFW. Antibody testing of each blood donation.

Those 17 and older, weighing at least 114 pounds and in good health, may be eligible to donate blood. A good meal and plenty of fluids are recommended before donating. Appointment and photo ID required. Call (800) 469-7322 or visit

Virtual resource fair for older adults

As part of the Livable La Mesa Age Friendly project, La Mesa’s Community Relations and Veterans Commission will host a free virtual resource fair for older adults and their families and caregivers at 6 p.m. Feb. 24. The 90-minute virtual event will discuss the effects of COVID-19 on older adults’ daily lives. Experts from the county’s Health and Human Services Agency, Oasis and the San Diego County Library will offer tips and resources including food access, transportation, fitness, technology and combating social isolation. Watch on Zoom at or listen by phone by calling (669) 900-6833, webinar ID: 938 7268 8513. To submit questions for speakers or for help accessing Zoom, contact Megan Howell at by noon Feb. 22.

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