Demolition of North Park LGBTQ Historical Site… a Clerical Error?

Paisley Abbey gargoyle 6

Doug Porter recently wrote about the after hours demolition of one of San Diego’s two remaining historic Saltbox houses. The Bernie Michels-Thom Carey house at the corner of Florida Street and El Cajon Blvd was bulldozed by contractors working for developer HG Fenton this past Friday, May 29.

San Diego 6News has reported that the demolition permit may have been issued in error and that the city’s Development Services Department is conducting a “forensic review.” If that is the case, it is one helluva oops. A dozen red roses and a Hallmark card won’t put humpty dumpty back together again.   [Read more…]

Barrio Bits: Barrio Logan Planning Group Begins, SD Workers Center to Open, Break Down Borders Run, La Bodega’s Anniversary y más!

By Brent E. Beltrán

This is the first in what I hope will be a bi-weekly column within my Desde la Logan column that will highlight the various happenings in the barrios of San Diego. I can’t cover everything but I can highlight those things that I feel deserve to be seen and read about. It’s a work in progress so bear with me.

Barrio Logan Planning Group Holds First Meeting
Barrio Logan finally has a planning group! And I’m on it!

On January 20 the Barrio Logan Planning Group held its first meeting ever at Woodbury University School of Architecture. The meeting was attended by more than 65 people plus the fifteen appointed planning group members that were able to make it. The large crowd was a good start and shows the interest that community members have in getting involved in Barrio Logan.

Maritime industry made it very clear that they were upset with David Alvarez not appointing anybody of their liking to the group. Well boohoo! Elections have consequences and the consequences for their B & C referendum is them not (yet) having a seat on the planning group. There’ll be plenty of opportunities in the future for them to worm their way onto the group. Until then they can give public comment.   [Read more…]

SDFP Street Beat: Sherman Heights Streets, SDG&E’s High Pressure Gas Lines in the Mid-City, Artificial Turf in Pacific Beach Schools

By Staff

The San Diego Free Press receives emails about quality of life issues from residents across the city and county. These issues receive little if any media coverage and inadequate attention from policy makers and enforcement agencies.  We have decided to provide a civic forum for those issues in our weekly Street Beat column.

Sherman Heights Street Conditions

Sherman Heights resident Remy Bermúdez sent the following email to Councilman Alvarez, Mayor Faulkner and Council President Gloria:   [Read more…]

Support Local Artists, Artisans and Small Businesses, Buy Independent for the Holidays

By Brent E. Beltrán

The holidays are upon us and the time for gift giving is here. Instead of shopping at the malls and giving your hard earned cash to a corporation why not purchase items from local artists and artisans?

Here is a short list of holiday art bazaars and small businesses that deserve to be patronized this holiday season.   [Read more…]

Commemorate Día de los Muertos throughout San Diego – Long Live the Dead!

Día de los Muertos Commemorated for Thousands of Years in the Americas

By Brent E. Beltrán

Los días de los muertos have been commemorated for thousands of years in the Americas. It started in what is now México and has spread throughout the United States and the world. Today these days are celebrated by people of many different colors and cultures.

November 1 is Día de los Inocentes (Day of the Innocents) when deceased children are honored and November 2 is known as Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) where we pay tribute to adults who have passed away. These dates correspond with the Christian holidays of All Saints’ Day and All Soul’s Day.   [Read more…]

Language Interpreters Are California’s Lifeline

Lack of Interpreters is a Life and Death Situation for Many

By Lorena Gonzalez

There are more than 50 languages spoken more comfortable and proficiently than English by the residents in the South Bay and Mid-City San Diego neighborhoods I represent. Throughout California, this challenge is shared by more than 6.5 million Californians, according to the 2010 U.S. Census.

Ordering food. Asking for directions. Attending school. Interviewing for a job. Filling prescriptions. Rescheduling appointments.

No situation involving a language barrier is as frightening, though, as one that risks the life of a loved one.   [Read more…]

Las Monthly Ondas June Edition: Taco Shop Poets Dream of Sugar Skulls

Read Tacos. Eat Poetry.

By Brent E. Beltrán

Has it already been twenty years since a band of guerrilla word slingers thought to share poetry with taco shop patrons? Apparently so, as the Taco Shop Poets are back in poetic motion for a gig at The Front in San Ysidro.

Founding Taco Shop Poets member Adolfo Guzman Lopez told me “it’s been 20 years since the idea for taco shop poetry was put in motion. We’re presenting the group’s 2011 book Sugarskull Sueños at the Tijuana book fair and what better place to reflect on our personal journeys as Mexican Americans, Chicanos, Latinos, cuarentones, border vatos, and fathers than a homegrown community space in San Ysidro.”

Originally started as a large, loose knit group of mostly Chicano and Latino raconteurs the Taco Shop Poets almost singlehandedly helped recreate the California spoken word poetry scene. They eventually whittled themselves down into a tight collective of border bards that have toured the nation and beyond. Their influence on the Chicano poetry world can still be felt today even though they’ve been relatively dormant the past few years.   [Read more…]

The Starting Line – Whoa! Stop that Walmart! UFCW President Calls for ‘Extreme Measures’ in Wake of State Audit

By Doug Porter

So much news, so little time… Here is today’s roundup.

A fifty eight page report from State Auditor Elaine Howle examining the City of San Diego’s practices regarding permitting for construction projects has raised serious ethical and legal questions about a Walmart location under construction in Sherman Heights.

Community groups opposed to the destruction of the Historic Farmer’s Market building in Sherman Heights were joined by organized labor in protests and lawsuits aimed at halting Walmart. But their complaints fell of deaf ears as city officials claimed all appropriate reviews had been conducted and touted the mega-retailers plans to create jobs in business-friendly San Diego.

Now it’s come out that the City didn’t even issue permits until after construction was underway, even after the lawsuits were filed.   [Read more…]

What’s in a Name? Five San Diego Neighborhoods in Search of an Identity

By Avital Aboody 

About one year ago I moved from Los Angeles to San Diego and began working as the Project Coordinator for the Greater Logan Heights Community Partnership (GLHCP), a collaborative of community-based organizations serving Logan Heights, Memorial, Sherman Heights, Grant Hill and Stockton. These five neighborhoods are bounded by Route 94 to the north, 1-15 to the east, and 1-5 the south and west.

The GLHCP is an outgrowth of the Neighborhood First Initiative piloted by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) in 2008. The group formed as an earnest effort to unite community-based organizations and empower residents to take action to create sustainable change in their neighborhood. Before taking this job, I had never heard of any of these neighborhoods, let alone the varying names that are used to refer to them collectively. But as I launched into my work, I quickly learned the significance of names in this community.   [Read more…]

Desde la Logan: Casa Galería Brings Art and Culture to the Historic Barrio District

In an old Victorian house located on Island St. in the barrio of Sherman Heights sits San Diego’s newest art gallery. Casa Galería, located at the historic Founders’ House, is managed by the Historic Barrio District Community Development Corporation (HBD CDC). The HBD CDC is a nonprofit organization committed to addressing the needs of the communities of Sherman Heights, Logan Heights, Grant Hill, Memorial and Stockton. The Historic Barrio District presents itself as a Mecca of art, culture, history and activism that promotes community pride, economic opportunities and a healthy environment for all of its residents.

The HBD CDC’s latest project, among their many, is Casa Galería. Casa Galería is a community space dedicated to cultivating and celebrating Chicano/Latino arts and culture in San Diego’s historic barrios. The gallery will provide a space for local and international Chicano/Latino artists to showcase their art and will embrace visual, literary, musical, textile and craft artists by presenting quality work that will engage the residents, neighbors and the San Diego community at large.   [Read more…]

Eyewitness Account: Man Dies After Fatal Stabbing in Sherman Heights

by Remigia (Remy) Bermúdez

According to witnesses, passers-by and police officers, at approximately 5:30pm on Monday (October 1st) an altercation that started in Logan Heights at 22nd Street and the southern side of Imperial Avenue resulted on a man stumbling down at the corner of 22nd and L Streets in Sherman Heights bleeding from repeated stab wounds. According to a SDPD press release, sent to this San Diego Free Press’s (SDFP) contributing writer, the man died en route to the hospital.  Homicide detective Lt. Duran added, “The deceased victim has been identified, but his name will be withheld until his family can be notified.”

 It was like a scene from a movie, as the SDPD corded off the area with yellow plastic tape, topping fences of surrounding properties in the eastern and western sides was 22nd Street from L Street heading southerly through what appeared to be Commercial Avenue. The area remained cordoned off from around 6pm Monday evening through Tuesday’s morning hours of October 2nd to protect evidence from being disturbed, according to SDPD officers.

The first media on the scene was the San Diego Free Press, as this contributing writer lives nearby.    [Read more…]

Sherman Heights March Highlights Poor Working Conditions at WalMart Warehouses

By Nadin Abbott

The rally started at the Golden Hill park and made its way to the Sherman Heights Farmer’s Market — the future site of a new Walmart.

As the marchers came down the street, chants could be heard: “Walmart escucha, estamos en la lucha.” (Walmart listen, we are in the fight). “One, 2, 3, 4, we don’t want your Walmart store. Five, 6, 7, 8, Walmart discriminates. “¡El pueblo unido, jamás será vencido!” (The people united, will never be defeated.)

Nearly 1,000 people attended the demonstration, according to Lorena Gonzales, Secretary-Treasurer/CEO of the San Diego and Imperial Labor Councils. They came together from local unions and a long list of community groups to demand that Walmart treat its workers fairly.   [Read more…]

The Starting Line — Study Paints a Stark Picture of Economic Reality in San Diego

An analysis released yesterday by the Center for Policy Initiatives based on recently released census data shows more than a third of San Diego County residents are living with economic hardships. The report says that across most industries in San Diego County, the spending power of the average paycheck is dropping, with inflation-adjusted earnings decreasing in 10 of the region’s 15 largest industries, compared to 2007, and more people falling into poverty in last year.
Other Stories in Starting Line Today: The Art of Park(ing) Day, San Diego’s Largest Rally Ever Against WalMart , Lim(p)baugh Blames Shrinking Penis on ‘Feminazis’, Imperial Beach MediPot Supporters Beat the Bushes, Quail Brush Power Plant Foes to Rally, North Park Officially Hip Now and so much more! Come on inside and catch up!   [Read more…]

The Starting Line – NY Times 9/11 Revelation: Bush had even more warnings about Al Qaeda

According to a report published in New York Times today, President George W, Bush received numerous intelligence reports well in advance of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the US, but failed to react to them based on advice from neo-conservative Pentagon advisers.

  [Read more…]