Potential Deal Averts Water Rate Increase

It’s Election Season: Meet the Candidates

Stallions Football Hits 3-0

S E P T E M B E R 24 – O C TO B E R 7, 2 0 1 0

Changes At and Around San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station
SONGS has new plant supervisor, is getting new steam generators and has a new reef offshore E Y E O N S J C / PAG E 4

A new steam generator slowly made its way to San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station earlier this month. Photo courtesy Southern California Edison


The proposed Playa del Norte project will again be included on the ballot in a special election on March 8, 2011 following a decision by San Clemente’s City Council on Tuesday, September 21. City Council initially approved the approximately 49,000square foot commercial development during a meeting last July, but opponents of the project recently garnered enough qualified signatures for a ballot referendum. Council then opted for stand-alone election, which could cost San Clemente $151,500 to $168,500 in election fees. Even though the March date is the most expensive, compared to a general election date in November 2012, which would have cost $8,500, other cities in the county could also choose to set a special election at that time, possibly bringing down the overall cost.

What’s Up With...
…No Water Rate Increase?
THE LATEST: Residents flocking to the San Juan Capistrano City Council Chambers September 21 to protest a proposed water-rate increase to cover increased costs because of a MtBE spill instead heard a potential settlement with the oil company has eliminated the need for the rate hike. The city, which operates a groundwater recovery plant to provide residents drinking water, estimates it has lost nearly $5 million because it had to shut down its primary well and buy imported water when MtBE that leaked from a Chevron station was discovered in the system. Additionally, a system to remove the MtBE will cost $1.6 million to build and $1.3 million to operate annually, city officials said. Those costs, the city said, spurred the need for a MtBE surcharge for water customers. WHAT’S NEXT: “Chevron agreed in concept to settlement points,” Mayor Lon Uso said. “The result of this action means no additional water rate increase will be imposed on San Juan Capistrano residents.” The additional water treatment could be in place by the end of the year, he said. FIND OUT MORE: See more at www. —Jonathan Volzke and median markings. Some of the streets, particularly on the east side of town, have been finished for months, but as more asphalt goes down, there’s still no lines. “There is a nationwide shortage of ‘thermoplastic paint’ and the City of San Juan Capistrano, along with many other agencies, is faced with lack of traffic stripes on its newly paved streets,” Capistrano spokeswoman Kelly Tokarski said. “Staff has been told that the situation was supposed to be remedied by the end of September, but a recent communication by the manufacturer shows the delay is likely to last another five or six weeks.” In the meantime, Tokarski said, the city asked the contractor to put down more reflective tags to create lanes on streets, as well as use ordinary paint. Tokarski said city contractors told Capistrano officials the lack of paint is because of a “severe shortage” of domestic paint resin and imported resin not arriving and clearing customs at US ports in a timely fashion. That is causing delays in production of thermoplastic paint, she said. Councilmembers on Tuesday were not so satisfied when City Engineer Nasser Abbaszadeh told them “there’s no paint to be found.” “I know these streets pretty well and I keep getting confused,” Councilwoman Laura Freese said. “Leaving these streets unpainted is asking for trouble... we need to get these things done as soon as possible.” WHAT’S NEXT: It could be more than a month before the proper paint is procured. Councilman Mark Nielsen asked the City Attorney to look into the details of the city’s $2.6 million contract with Copp Contracting to see if the city can collect fines. FIND OUT MORE: See —JV

San Juan Capistrano’s Top 5 Hottest Topics




The City of Dana Point will present Star Spangled Spectacular, a free picnic concert in Lantern Bay Park on September 26 at 3 p.m. The Capistrano Valley Symphony lead by conductor John Santana will present all-American music including works by Bernstein, Copland, Ellington, Gershwin, Foster and Sousa. Special guests, the 1st Marine Division Band from Camp Pendleton, will also play a set of patriotic favorites. In the hopes of sparking an interest in music in local youngsters, the event will include, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., a musician-hosted, handson activity for kids called an “Instrument Petting Zoo” where children will be able to hear, touch and play various orchestra instruments. Lantern Bay Park is located at 25111 Park Lantern Road. For more information call 949.248.3530 or send an email to


…Home Depot?

THE LATEST: A city-owned parcel owned by the city on Stonehill Drive is worth about $9 million, representatives of The Home Depot told officials in a September 9 letter. The city and The Home Depot are discussing a home-improvement store on the parcel, which is just west of Camino Capistrano. The Home Depot wants to enter an exclusive negotiating period with Capistrano officials. “A definitive purchase price will be developed during the exclusive negotiation period when the development costs have been developed,” says the letter, from Beverly Metz, senior real estate manager for The Home Depot. Ironically, The Home Depot was rejected for the same parcel in an advisory measure put before San Juan voters four years ago. Now, City Council members—including some who led the fight against the store then—say they need the sales-tax revenue The Home Depot could generate. WHAT’S NEXT: The council will decide October 5 whether to enter exclusive negotiations with The Home Depot. FIND OUT MORE: See the letter at The Capistrano Insider blog at —JV

settlement does not call for any money to change hands, and mostly sets up regular meetings between the agencies and formalizes traffic-control measures already in place on campuses. Trustees also voted to drop out of the California School Boards Association, which provides policy and other support for districts. The non-profit agency, however, has been hit by salary-related scandals. CUSD will save $17,000 a year in dues with its withdrawal. WHAT’S NEXT: Trustees next meet at 7 p.m. on September 28 at CUSD headquarters, 33122 Valle Road. FIND OUT MORE: See the Beyond the Blackboard blog at —JV


…Ed Laurie’s Passing?


THE LATEST: Ed Laurie, the longtime owner of Stitcheree in San Juan Capistrano, has lost a battle with cancer. He passed away at 12:30 p.m. September 16, surrounded by family and close friends. He died in the arms of his son, Bob. Laurie had bright blue eyes and a smile that was just as bright. “Ed was a wonderful man and a dear friend to so many,” said Scott Schmitt of San Juan Photo & Digital. “He will be missed.” Stitcheree, on Paseo Adelanto, provided monogrammed clothing and promotional materials. WHAT’S NEXT: A continental style breakfast at the Dana West Yacht Club (24601 Dana Drive, Dana Point ) is set for 9 a.m. Saturday, October 25, followed by boats leaving the harbor at 10 a.m. for a ceremony at sea, where Laurie’s ashes will be spread. FIND OUT MORE: See http://www. —JV

…Lots Happening in CUSD?


…A Street-Paint Shortage?

THE LATEST: Traffic is weaving and residents are buzzing after a nationwide paint shortage has left San Juan Capistrano’s newly-asphalted streets without lane

THE LATEST: Capistrano Unified School District trustees this month settled a two-year-old lawsuit filed against CUSD by the cities of Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita after the district cut most of its bus routes. Those cities alleged the district did not complete proper environmental studies. The

September 24–October 7, 2010 • The Capistrano Dispatch • Page 3

EyE on SJC

Changes At and Around San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station
SONGS has new plant supervisor, is getting new steam generators and a new reef offshore
The Capistrano Dispatch


itting just south of the Orange County border, the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station provides power to San Juan Capistrano residents and businesses, making it just as much a part of the community as the city’s historic architecture, open spaces and equestrian lifestyle. And while the plant’s been under increasing pressure from regulators, and some members of the public, changes have been underway in how it is managed, how it operates and even in the waters near the ocean-front plant. A New LeAder He talks clearly and calmly and doesn’t hesitate to mix in sports analogies, but James “Joe” Sheppard doesn’t mince words when it comes to the performance of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. “SONGS doesn’t meet the standards set in our industry,” Sheppard said. “That doesn’t mean the plant is unsafe. That doesn’t mean the plant is staffed by bad people. Our standards are very, very high. There are things at SONGS that we do better than anyone else in the industry… and there are things we have to learn.” Sheppard’s words also don’t leave any question whose job it is to see that those lessons are learned. “I am not going to be a caretaker,” said Sheppard, 61, who was appointed San Onofre’s interim Chief Nuclear Officer on September 2. “I will do what I think necessary to move the organization in the right direction.” Sheppard, who had been consulting with SONGS operator, Southern California Edison, since January, took the helm a day after the Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued another letter critical of operations of the plant. SONGS has been under increasing pressure for two years to address issues of quickly identifying and addressing most minor problems. He takes over for Ross T. Ridenoure, who held the position for two-and-a-half years before stepping down for what he said were “the best interests of the station.” Sheppard is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and Duke University. He previously was President and CEO of the South Texas Project Nuclear Operating Company—which had been shut down by the NRC just before he took the reins in 1993. Sheppard is credited with addressing a list of 16 items the NRC said needed correcting before the plant could restart. It was operating again by 2004. Sheppard is confident he can find similar success at SONGS. The keys, he said, are setting the standards of

San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. Photo by Andrea Swayne

success, ensuring all employees share the same definition of that success and that managers know how to send the message down the line. Despite years of bad headlines, Sheppard said morale at SONGS is good. “Every employee workgroup I have met with has said without fail ‘I want to make SONGS better,’” Sheppard said. “So I have enlisted them in the cause to make SONGS better.” He likens procedures to a good golf swing—repetition brings about the desired results. He doesn’t admit to being as much a sports fan as one who recognizes the natural analogy between coaches getting players to do the best on the field and managers getting employees to do their best at work. “Everybody wants to be a winner,” he said. “No one likes derogatory things said about them … It’s how we use that going forward, as a motivational tool: Here’s how we win, by going forward every day using the right procedures.” Sheppard, who is taking an apartment in San Clemente, has a wife, Linda, two daughters, three granddaughters and his first grandson on the way. He enjoys reading military history, learning lessons he also brings to SONGS. “I like to see how great military leaders could get ordinary people to do extraordinary things,” Sheppard said. He excused himself from the interview to go meet with NRC officials, then the public, at a recent SONGS update community meeting. —Jonathan Volzke New 640-tON SteAm GeNerAtOrS Southern California Edison will be replacing two 640-ton steam generators in its Unit 3 reactor beginning October 10.

Built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Japan, the first steam generator made its way from Camp Pendleton’s Del Mar Boat Basin to the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station beginning September 9, but had to reach its ultimate destination at a slow rate. SCE even requested that California Highway Patrol briefly shut down the southbound Interstate-5, September 16 to transport the generator via a heavy hauling transporter often referred to as a crawler. Traveling at 1.5 mph, the entire trip will take between one and two weeks. And the second of the new Unit 3 steam generators is expected to start the same transport process on September 24, Edison spokesman Gil Alexander said. SONGS replaced the Unit 2 reactor earlier this year—a process that took about six months and was completed last April. All went according to plan. Essentially, the Unit 3 reactor at San Onofre will be shut down from three to four months, which will include the replacement of the old steam generators with the new, a refueling of the reactor along with further maintenance, all while adding about 1,000 temporary workers at SONGS, Alexander said. To replace the steam generators, workers will create an opening at the top of Unit 3’s dome. The project should be completed by the end of the year. —David Zimmerle A New reef The Wheeler North Reef, a 174-acre artificial reef, built approximately one mile off the coast of San Clemente by Southern California Edison in the

summer of 2008 is flourishing. The reef, a requirement of the California Coastal Commission, was designed as a mitigation project to address environmental impacts thought to be caused by the ocean-water cooling system at SONGS, produced its first full-canopied kelp forest this summer and studies show that sea life is flourishing. The $46 million project, named after Caltech scientist and kelp-restoration expert Wheeler J. North, is the result of a 15-year study dating back to the ’80s. “When the permits were first sought to build SONGS the state agreed to grant conditional permits as long as we study the impact of the plant on marine life,” said SCE spokesman Gil Alexander. “The Coastal Commission-ordered study came with a condition that if we found any adverse impact we would have to deal with it. So we built the plant and started a 15-year study by independent scientists that determined the oceanwater cooling system used at the plant had an effect on the natural San Onofre kelp reef, perhaps reducing the size of it somewhat by stirring up the sand at the bottom and preventing sunlight from reaching the kelp.” Not only are the scientific studies demonstrating the reef’s success, but local anglers have noticed its impact on marine life as well. “The fish are attracted to the new structure and the abundant kelp growth acts almost like a roof on their house making it very attractive as a rookery for many species including calico bass, sand bass and sculpin,” said Dana Wharf Sportfishing Captain Michael Hansen. “We usually fish along the old, natural structure for more mature fish but it is nice to know that new generations of fish are spawning at Wheeler North.” Scientists are continuing to study the number and size of fish and making estimates of how many tons of fish are on the reef. The multiple levels of data are being collected so that they can make an accurate determination of the increase in fish offshore that can be attributed to the man-made reef. “What we saw in 2009, just a year after placing the rocks (making up the reef) on the ocean floor was an immediate response of juvenile fish moving into the area,” said Tennant. “What we’re expecting in this last round of surveys completed just last month is that all of those young fish are now going to be adult fish resulting in a very dramatic addition in weight and numbers of fish offshore. A scientific advisory panel looks at the data and ensures that everything that we expect out of the reef is occurring and that it is doing everything we thought it would do.” —Andrea Swayne CD

Page 4 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010

CUSD: Stay on Course or a Pendulum Swing?
The Capistrano Dispatch



oters go to the polls on November 2 with the option to keep the current Capistrano Unified School District Board of Trustees, usher in a new majority or really mix things up. Five of the board’s seven seats are on the ballot—two by recall—and five incumbents that ran as a team are being challenged by a slate of five challengers. Here are their ballot statements: TRUSTEE AREA 3, SHORT TERM JOHN ALPAY, San Clemente Commissioner/ Businessman, CUSD has forgotten that its primary purpose is providing the best possible education for our children while responsibly managing taxpayer dollars. I will work to restore quality education and operate a fiscally sound school district. Due to Sacramento’s never-ending incompetence, revenue to CUSD continues to decline. Raising taxes is simply not an option. As your next Trustee, I will work responsibly to cut spending by reducing expenses unrelated to the classroom, including decreasing the number of attorneys utilized by CUSD. In these difficult times we need integrity and honest leadership. I am seeking office independent of special interests. No one can accuse me of accepting support from the unions or any trial attorney organizations. I earned my law and business degrees from UCLA and my undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley. From there I became a corporate executive at international and Fortune 500 companies, responsible for multi-million dollar budgets. I also serve in the community on non-profit boards and as a San Clemente Commissioner. As a father of three children under six years, I want them to have the best education possible. Let’s rebuild our district together. Vote John Alpay CUSD Board of Trustees, Area 3. MIKE WINSTEN, Attorney/ Independent Businessman, You elected me by a landslide margin of victory 2 years ago to restore honesty, integrity and accountability to CUSD—and we’ve accomplished much. Bringing reform and positive change is difficult in a district which spends approximately 85% of its budget on salaries/benefits for public employees—most who are represented by powerful union leaders and special interests fighting to preserve an unsustainable financial status quo for themselves, instead of putting our children’s education first. Despite continuous union opposition, I’ve successfully: Balanced the budget; Stopped deficit spending; Refused increased taxes; Slashed administration expenses; Promoted conservative fiscal policies; Fought to save teachers’ jobs; Fought for smaller classes. This year, CUSD was the State’s highest achieving large District! I earned my undergraduate degree from Cornell, law degree from USC, and MBA from UCI. As a business and real estate lawyer operating my own business, I’m a proven, results-oriented leader. My wife and I are proud parents of four children in CUSD schools and 1 in pre-school. As your Trustee, I discharge my duties with as much care for your family as my own. My job is not done. I’m working to bring positive change and accountability. Vote No Recall. TRUSTEE AREA 5 GARY PRITCHARD, Community College Professor, When it comes to education, I think like a dad. I want to know our children are learning in safe, wellmaintained neighborhood schools with the support of first-rate teachers. CUSD needs true leadership from parents who understand what’s best for our kids. I teach at Cerritos College, where I have served as department chair and in other leadership positions. I have successfully brought additional money into my college district and partnered with local

high schools to promote career opportunities. I recognize that our schools are in crisis. I have the commitment and experience necessary to be part of the solution. As a CUSD trustee, I’ll bring expertise in budgeting, music education, career education, and integrating our schools with colleges. I am a native Californian. My daughter attends a CUSD elementary school. My wife and I own a home in my trustee area. I’m a dad who wants local control and the removal of outside political forces from our schools. I have the educational and administrative experience to do this. I look forward to serving the families and taxpayers of CUSD. Let’s rebuild our district together. Vote Gary Pritchard CUSD Board of Trustees, Area 5. GARY V. MILLER, Retired Teacher Declined to submit statement. PAUL HEBBARD, Certified Public Accountant, As the only independent voice running for CUSD Trustee, I want to appeal to your senses in bringing stability back into your school district. Instead of the fighting between the two main factions, I will seek to build bridges between all groups who are involved in CUSD, from the teachers and administrators to the parents who have lost faith in their educational system. I will also fight for our hard earned tax dollars to be returned from Sacramento back to where the money is needed most, in the classrooms. We can ill afford to have our state spend money lavishly on special interest boondoggles, while at the same time letting our state educational system rot away. I urge you to consider an alternative and give me your consideration on November 2nd. Thank you very much. KEN LOPEZ MADDOX, Businessman/ Tax Consultant, I am honored to serve on our school board. With your support, I will continue the reforms now underway. But I can’t do it without you. I need your help to fight powerful special interests and public employee union leaders. As a former member of the California State Legislature, I served on the State Assembly’s Education Committee—educating and protecting children is my top priority. While in the legislature, I authored California’s Amber Alert system, the “Safe Surrender” bill to protect newborns, was co-author of legislation requiring class size reduction and led efforts to protect children from toxins on campus. As a 17-year police officer, I proudly served as a DARE officer in nearby schools—I am committed to making our schools safe and drug free. I have a Master’s Degree in Management and was a Senior Fellow at the UCLA School of Public Policy and Social Research. Despite fierce opposition, I have: Balanced the budget, Refused demands for a parcel tax, Slashed a bloated administration, Oversaw a top to bottom facilities assessment, and Held the line on wasteful spending. This year we were the State’s highest achieving large District! Vote no on the recall. TRUSTEE AREA 4 ANNA BRYSON, Capistrano Unified School District Governing Board Member, You elected me four years ago to restore integrity, accountability, and conservative fiscal policy—and we’ve accomplished much: Balanced the budget; Stopped deficit spending; Refused to increase taxes; Reduced bloated administration; Posted checkbook, budget online; Fought to keep smaller class sizes; Repaired buildings and removed old portables; Promoted classroom discipline and parental rights. Currently, we are among the State’s highestachieving large Districts! Having been CEO of a software technology firm, I’m a careful steward of your tax dollars. I watch every penny to improve student learning— and promise voters to keep our District solvent.

Salaries and benefits are 85 percent of our budget. Hit by the state’s budget crisis, we reduced administrative salary expenses 10 percent last year—this year, we needed to reduce similarly the costs of our union contract. Sadly, union leaders refused to be a part of the solution. They called a union strike. This unnecessary strike deprived our children of three days of normal classes, disrupted lives, and needlessly destroyed goodwill—for no positive purpose. Nonetheless, my words throughout the strike sought to bring us all back together. With your vote, I will continue working tirelessly to guard against tax hikes and to advance student learning. SAAM ALIKHANI, University Student, We need strong leadership to restore educational excellence and accountability in CUSD. I will jettison the partisan politics and reject outside interests that have plagued this district. I have been a lifelong resident and active participant in the district. I attended CUSD schools, and have seen the problems as well as the solutions, from both a student’s and taxpayer’s perspective. As site council president at a CUSD high school, I managed a large budget and worked with all stakeholders to create educational plans for students to learn and excel. I served as the student trustee to the CUSD board. I have successfully represented the taxpayers and the students’ best interests at all times. I have advocated the importance of education to multiple state legislators in Sacramento to gain additional funding for our schools. I will work with local businesses, community colleges, and universities to create the best opportunity for our children. Partisan politics and special outside interests have no role in educating CUSD students. I will focus on education. I ask for your support so that together we can restore the integrity and reputation of CUSD. Let’s rebuild our district together. Vote for Saam Alikhani, CUSD Board of Trustees. TRUSTEE AREA 6 MARTHA MCNICHOLAS, Engineering Entrepreneur, In this budget crisis, it is critical that fiscal decisions made by Trustees be based on what is best for our children and their educational success. As a parent of a recent graduate and a high school student, I know the impact on students of the recent budget cuts. Local school boards are limited by Sacramento’s complicated system of financing public education. As a Trustee, I will work to make sure CUSD’s needs are communicated to our legislators, and will promote increased local control of education dollars and fiscal responsibility. Parent involvement in public education is essential not only to the individual student’s success, but for our schools and communities to thrive. I am proud of my 15 years of successful experience and service on and off campus. I will encourage ongoing parent and community participation. I will bring the strengths of technical analysis and a logical approach to problem solving from my engineering education at Stanford University, and 35 years of experience as a real-world practicing engineer (engineering manager, project leader, quality assurance manager, designer, failure analyst, etc.) towards achieving excellence in CUSD. Let’s rebuild our district together. Vote for Martha McNicholas, CUSD Board of Trustees. ELLEN ADDONIZIO, Certified Public Accountant Learn more: You elected me by a landslide margin of victory four years ago, to restore honesty, integrity and accountability to CUSD—and we’ve accomplished much. Bringing reform and improvements is a

challenge in a district which spends approximately 85 percent of its budget on salaries/benefits for public employees—most of whom are represented by powerful union leaders fighting to preserve an unsustainable status quo. Despite union opposition, I’ve successfully: Balanced the budget; Refused to increase taxes; Reduced administration expenses; Reduced union contract expenses by 10.1 percent; Enacted strong anti-nepotism policies; Created a district-wide facilities assessment; Promoted conservative fiscal policies and family values. As an experienced certified public accountant, I commit to you my 26 years of auditing, investigative accounting and tax services experience. My expertise in long range capital and operational budgeting and cost accounting will allow me to ensure that scarce education dollars meant for our children actually reach them. With your vote, I will continue working tirelessly to bring positive change and accountability to CUSD. TRUSTEE AREA 7 LARRY CHRISTENSEN, Capistrano Unified School District, Governing Board Member, Four years ago I was fortunate to be elected to restore honesty, integrity and accountability to CUSD—a continuing mission that is achieving success. Bringing reform and positive change is especially difficult in a district which spends approximately 85 percent of its budget on salaries/benefits for public employees – most of whom are represented by powerful union leaders fighting to preserve an unsustainable status quo. Despite continuous union opposition, I’ve successfully: Balanced the budget and stopped deficit spending; Refused to increase taxes; Reduced bloated administration; Enacted strong antinepotism policies; Created a district-wide facilities assessment; Promoted conservative fiscal policies; Fought to save teachers’ jobs to keep smaller class sizes. This year, student achievement in CUSD soared to its highest levels! Having owned an engineering firm as well as being blessed with a loving family, I am impassioned to complete a renovation of CUSD’s facility department in order that the needed upgrades to classrooms can be provided for all of the communities’ children. My job is not yet done. With your vote, I’ll continue working tirelessly to bring positive change and accountability to CUSD. LYNN HATTON, Small Business Owner, We need to rebuild our district and restore our focus on our children and their educational future. I believe that we need people on our Board of Trustees who care about and have a vested interest in the students of our community. We need people who understand education and will not waste our precious CUSD resources on out of court settlements. We need people who will put first the best interests of our children. My entire life has been dedicated to education in California. My children attend middle school in our district, my husband teaches at Cal. State Fullerton, I have held parent leadership positions at our schools and my professional career entails supporting students, families, teachers and administrators to ensure success. With the right leadership and working with all stakeholders we can rebuild our district. If elected, I will be committed to: Ensuring success in college and career for all students, Building mutually beneficial relationships with local universities and businesses, Developing and retaining our best and brightest faculty, Transparency in decision making Fiscal and systemic accountability. Let’s rebuild our district together. Vote Lynn Hatton, CUSD Board of Trustees, Area 7.

Page 6 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010


Council Candidates Weigh In on Proposed Projects
The Capistrano Dispatch


e asked candidates: “The city is considering several developments that have generated discussion in the community. Do you support Distrito La Novia and the Continuing Life Communities proposal and how do you balance that decision with property-owners’ rights and what’s best for the community?” Here are the responses, unedited in the order in which the candidates will appear on the November ballot: DEREK REEVE Constitutional Attorney/Historian As a principled conservative, I shall respect private property rights. However, our city is governed by the General Plan that applies to all property owners equally. The City has been advocating one interest over the others and this must end. I do not support the Distrito La Novia/ Meadows plan as currently proposed. It does not violate property rights to refuse a change of zoning from residential to mixed use. The property owner purchased the property knowing it was zoned residential as were neighboring property owners. In fact, it does violate neighboring property owners of their rights since they relied on the zoning before they purchased their properties. The City Council has erroneously translated density for residences into retail space, falsely claiming density has been reduced from the original plan. The current City Council wants us to focus our attention on the reduction of homes and proposed horse stables in the meadows project, yet not pay attention to the Distrito La Novia where the density of the combined project has been concentrated. Regarding CLC, I will consider proposals that conserve SJC rural heritage, does not lead to double tracking, and does not have City financial involvement. JIM REARDON Technology Executive As a Republican, I stand for private property rights. My commitment is equally applicable to developers as to residential property owners and even tenants in a mobile home park. Our city has a General Plan that governs land-use in the area of Distrito La Novia. An existing Specific Plan also exists for these properties. The City Council should not advocate one interest over those of the community. Members of our City Council have been personally involved in creating the new DLN plan and now cannot fairly represent us in this matter. For this reason, I oppose further consideration of the DLN plan. I oppose the use of government power to remove a mobile home park to make way for a commercial development. The Continuing Life Communities project is different. It is mostly consistent with the General Plan. I oppose any City financial participation in the CLC development and invite CLC to submit their Development Application for fair and impartial consideration.

JOHN TAYLOR Businessman Distrito La Novia -Meadows: The reduced number of homes from 440 to 234 is a good idea and fair to the neighbors. The addition of a world class equestrian center would be outstanding and I would phase in the number of horses on the property. The project brings much needed retail opportunities to the east side, hopefully we could get a Trader Joe’s or Whole foods Market. With the widening of San Juan Creek Road at Valle and the re-alignment of the off ramp, traffic flow will be greatly improved. As a condition of approval I would require this roadwork be completed before any building permits were issued. Continuing Life Communities: The CLC project is on private property and zoned for this use, a seniors housing development. CLC would bring our city a high quality retirement community. It would be the single largest employer in our city and would bring much needed tax revenue to our city coffers as well. It is a low impact use and leaves most of the land as open space for our citizens to enjoy. Consider the possible alternative, a U.S. Postal Service Annex, trucks, smog, concrete and asphalt. CLINT WORTHINGTON Locomotive Engineer I do not support the Distrito La Novia. The City does have a General Plan that applies to all property owners. This project requires a change to the General Plan that is not agreeable to nearby homeowners. By the City Council having two members meeting and providing input to the development of the project, it has subtracted the ability of the City Council members ability to be impartial when discussing and voting on this property. The CLC project is too dense for our rural town. I am unable to support this project as it is presented. LARRY KRAMER Retired Naval Officer Distrito La Novia/ Meadows. The Distrito La Novia/Meadows project is currently zoned for 440 homes, institutional use and a hotel. The proposal to change the Master Plan and zoning to approve 94 homes and a stable on the Meadows area is a significant improvement although the number of horses should be reduced significantly. Retail, apartments and condos seem reasonable although I do not see the need for more office space. The important thing is that the traffic impacts of this development should all be completed before the first building permit is issued. In particular the intersection of the I-5 off-ramp, Valle Road and La Novia should be improved immediately. The widening of Valle Road should be accomplished with a stepped set back instead of an ugly tall wall. Continuing Life Communities (CLC)

CLC has a reputation of building high quality retirement communities. They have my support. There are two proposals for setting aside more open space. I favor the one wherein CLC retrains title to and liability for the open space land and the city residents would have access to soccer fields, to a staging area and to the trails all of which CLC would build and maintain. JESS LOPEZ Retired Police Sergeant I oppose the Distrito La Novia-Meadows project. I oppose the projects excavation of the landfill that has been closed since 1976 because of the potential health risk to the surrounding community property owners in Loma Vista, Mesa Vista and Capo Terrace Mobile Home Park. I also oppose a General Plan Amendment and rezone to accommodate the developers. The present 2 incumbents up for reelection seem poised to approve all or any development plans with out considering our communities mounting opposition. Maybe because both incumbents sat on the subcommittee to support a General plan rezoning change. Another concern is how many half baked projects does this developer have ties to? This project also closes the Capo Terrace Mobile home park and displaces over 100 labor force, low income and senior citizen families from affordable housing. Remember our planning Commission declined the project, citing traffic and building massing. I like the new CLC proposal at the cost of $10 million. CLC gift of 113 free open space acres, continued use of soccer fields and keeping taxes to use downtown. Conceptual planning challenges will need the railroad crossing approval to complete the project. VICTOR J. SCHNEIDER Geologist I do not support the proposed Distrito La Novia project based on information provided within the Environmental Impact Report (EIR), Traffic Impact Analysis Report, and concerns from adjacent residents. The EIR clearly lists many negative environmental impacts with this project. Although mitigation measures are presented, they are inadequate to protect the health & welfare of adjacent residents. My decision is balanced by my belief that public safety is paramount, not economics. Our current City Council’s support for this project does not reflect a similar attitude. The EIR states “…construction-related NOx emissions and PM10 concentrations will remain significant and unavoidable.” and recognizes that “potentially significant odors” emanating from the equine will exist. Additionally, unearthing the former landfill is very risky to public health. Fugitive dust can become deadly when inhaled. Landfills inherently have dangerous environmental issues (e.g. Ascon, Stringfellow, and BKK Landfills). I fail to see how this project protects current and future site receptors. Regarding the Continuing Life Communities proposal, I support the proposed project for our seniors, but not the OCTA (and

PUC) holding us hostage for a public crossing leading to double-tracking, noise, air-quality, and congestion. Once again, the current City Council is placing revenue over safety. MARK NIELSEN Businessman/ Councilman I look at development based on the benefits to the City as well as what the landowner may be entitled to build under current rules. If landowners are looking to change the rules, the alternative should provide more benefits to the City overall. Ultimately, development must enhance our City. As to the Distrito project, a previous City Council approved 440 residences around the old landfill. We cannot rescind this development. 440 homes would long-term cost the City more than it would generate and disrupt more landfill. I’d rather see a project generate ongoing revenues to the City, reduce landfill impacts and enhance the character and quality of our community. The proposed horse numbers are too high and traffic improvements must be made prior to the project’s completion. We don’t want 24 foot retaining walls. The State controls the landfill closure and a final solution should avoid negative impacts to surrounding neighbors to the greatest extent feasible. The CLC project will also generate millions of dollars of revenue to the City while preserving over 110 acres of open space in perpetuity, potentially at no cost to the City under their latest proposal. Since the property is zoned for this development, and only 34 acres developed would be much less than allowed under the General Plan, it seems a reasonable tradeoff. DR. LONDRES USO Councilman/Dentist I have been against CLC almost from the beginning. Because of my public objections to many seriously flawed terms in the option agreement with the City, it is a much improved project but still not the ideal for that location. I am concerned that foot dragging has left us few viable options beyond this project and the developer has now offered to build a small hotel on the site making it less objectionable, I am still not a great fan. I will still fight any double tracking of the railroad attached to this. I am in favor of a modified version of the La Novia/ Meadows project with a reduced equestrian component that is phased in to insure the welfare of adjacent neighborhoods. The residential portion has been greatly diminished, the retail portion and open space expanded. Traffic improvements that are under the authority of the City should be completed before occupancy to insure the least negative impact on residents. Balancing the rights of residents and the developer must include willingness from both sides to compromise. It also requires that we consider the benefits of this project to our City which positively impacts all of the residents of San Juan.

September 24–October 7, 2010 • The Capistrano Dispatch • Page 7



34932 Calle del Sol, Suite B, Capistrano Beach, CA 92624 phone 949.388.7700 fax 949.388.9977
The Capistrano Dispatch, Vol. 8, Issue 18. The Dispatch (www.thecapistranodispatch ) is published twice monthly by Picket Fence Media, publishers of the DP Times ( and the SC Times ( Copyright: No articles, illustrations, photographs, or other editorial matter or advertisements herein may be reproduced without written permission of the publisher. The publisher assumes no responsibility for return of unsolicited manuscripts, art, photos or negatives. Copyright 2010. All rights reserved. Printed in the USA.

Letters to the Community
—Art Hasselbrink, San Juan Capistrano I don’t make it a habit to write to newspapers, but I have to get this one off my chest. It seems that the leaders of CREER, a SJC Latino empowerment group, have not learned that it is not only wrong and deceptive, but very divisive to continue their practice to use other group(s) names to help promote their event or agenda. I am not interested in the politics of CREER. But, I am interested in asking CREER to please stop using other people or group’s names without their consent or authorization to promote CREER events or agenda. I am VFW life member and also an American Legion member. When I read in The Capistrano Dispatch and the Orange County Register that the VFW and the American Legion were supporters of CREER’s recent Indigenous Peoples Day Festival and 09/11 Remembrance event, I knew something was amiss. First of all, as a WWII and Korean War veteran, I could not believe that my fellow VFW and Legionnaires would support a 09/11 remembrance event, only to be followed by a “festival” with music, food and vendor booths, along with a bounce house for the children to enjoy. What is all that about? If that was not enough to get my dander up, I also learned that CREER had used the good names of the VFW and American Legion without either group’s knowledge or consent to promote their “festival,” and that it was only after criticisms from citizens in the community that they threw in the 09/11 tribute. Earlier this year, CREER pulled a similar stunt. The group named the city as a sponsor for its Dia de Los Ninos event. But, the facts revealed that the city was never a sponsor, and had no knowledge that CREER was using the city’s name to promote their (CREER) event, until a group of citizens informed city leaders of their findings. In my world, the practice of using other people or groups names is unacceptable and deceitful at best. CREER needs to stop antagonizing others by their duplicitous dealings. Mr. Soto and Mr. Ybarra, I hope you both read this and think about what you are doing here. been holding the Indigenous People Day celebration every September for the past six years. Reasonable people will understand that because of the size of this event, and the numerous groups involved, several months of planning and preparation is necessary. Now Mr. Brown is labeling CREER “terrorists,” because CREER had reserved the park ahead of his group and telling the City Council that CREER “hijacked” 9-11 (see The Capistrano Dispatch, Sept. 10-13 “What’s Up With” section)! As was reiterated on “Face the Nation” on Sunday, this nation is not about hate. But Orrie Brown and his likes continue to try to fan the flames of ethnic hatred in our community by now linking CREER to the 9-11 terrorist hijackers. San Juan doesn’t need another Pastor Jones. In the aftermath of the Koran burning debacle, the press questioned its own roll in fanning the flames of hatred. I too question The Dispatch’s rational for devoting so many column inches to the criticism of the event and Orrie Brown’s own personal comments. Hopefully, CREER’s efforts to bring our community together will continue to bear fruit. In the words of one “Common Sense” member who did attend the event, “It was well done.”


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CEO > Norb Garrett EDITORIAL Group Editor, Editor, The Dispatch > Jonathan Volzke City Editor, DP Times > Andrea Swayne ART/DESIGN Senior Designer > Jasmine Smith Graphic Designer > Heidi Mefferd ADVERTISING Associate Publisher > Lauralyn Loynes > Michele Reddick (San Clemente) > Sergio Sanchez (San Juan Capistrano) Sales Associates > Angela Edwards > Buddy Purel OPERATIONS Finance Director > Mike Reed Billing/Collections Manager > Alyssa Garrett Distribution Manager > Andrea Swayne INTERNS Chris Bashaw, Kirsten Amavisca Sacher, Madi Swayne SPECIAL THANKS Robert Miller, George Mackin CONTRIBUTORS Tawnee Prazak, David Zimmerle

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Andrea Swayne, 949.388.7700, x113 BILLING Alyssa Garrett, 949.388.7700, x100


Time for Change on OS Committee
t the conclusion of the last City Council meeting, Mark Nielsen made a short but powerful statement: It’s time to consider the end of the Open Space Committee as we know it. Without question, the 14 or so members of that committee, formed five years ago as an ad hoc panel, have made a last and indelible impact on the city. But it’s also without question that few thought the committee would last so long or pick up so much power along the way. What power? A group wanting to build an arts center in town was first directed to meet with a sub-committee of the Open Space panel—whose meetings are private. The Open Space Committee, where members have not had to reapply, unlike other commissioners, or file conflict-ofinterest forms, unlike other commissioners and even top city staff, has become part of the development-approval process. Nielsen suggests transitioning this committee into some sort of regular standing panel, but maybe there’s already enough of those. Besides, we already have a Parks, Recreation and Equestrian Commission, and there’s a separate, private Open Space Foundation, which has a membership nearly identical to the Open Space Committee. We owe the Open Space Committee members a debt of gratitude. We owe it to good governance to move forward with the effort in a well defined, open effort.


—Lisa Wilhelm, San Juan Capistrano Well, it’s election time again and it appears as though residents of San Juan need to have a “Come to Jesus” meeting about what they really want and hope for in our beloved town! As I look around and compare our wonderful town to others, here are the positives I note: 1.) No hilltop development—there’s something special about dropping down the 5 freeway, seeing all of that open space to the entrance of our city and raw land up ahead. 2.) Equestrian and agrarian community and rodeo— LOVE our association to a time which had a slower and simpler pace. One of the best rodeos in the nation that donates $1 million to local charities in our city. 3.) Complex trail system—what a treasure! SO grateful for all of those riding, walking and biking opportunities right here in our backyard. Still so much potential there! 4.) Great downtown and Mission—lots of great community and multicultural events to bring people together; great restaurants, movie theater, Depot. 5.) Fantastic schools, affordable homes, low property taxes—great for families! These are but a few of the many reasons to live,

—Ron Senkbeil Is there no end to the ongoing and needless verbal attacks on CREER by Orrie Brown and the “Common Sense” group? In an effort to bring people together, CREER has

work and play in San Juan Capistrano. What we have here is very special. I hope everyone will really do some “soul-searching” about what made them come to SJC and get involved more in the community; including researching and voting in the upcoming November election.
To submit a letter to the editor for possible inclusion in the paper, e-mail us at or send it to 34932 Calle del Sol, Suite B, Capistrano Beach, CA 92624. The Capistrano Dispatch reserves the right to edit reader-submitted letters for length and is not responsible for the claims made or the information written by the writers.

Page 8 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010


Building the Meadows, What’s Right for San Juan


s many developers and city planners will tell you, developers don’t usually voluntarily cut down the size of their projects once it has been entitled. That’s one thing that makes the proposed Meadows development so exceptional. As I told you in my last column, I’m a longtime resident of San Juan who deeply cares about the community, the way our city operates and how the land in the community is used. As a company we have always been and always will be community focused, striving to create great projects that benefit the cities and residents that live in and around them. When we purchased the land off of La Novia years ago, we did so with the existing entitlements and the intentions of building what was already approved and could still very easily be built with the pre-approved 440 homes. As we moved forward with the project, the City Council asked us to reconsider our approved plans and come up with a better, less dense plan that offered more to the city. We re-visited the plans and after more than three years, over 20 public meetings and numerous discussions with city leaders and local community members, we felt the community would be better served with a project that resulted in over 60 percent of the land area down zoned to open space, nearly 50 percent of the housing units removed, a unique retail destination and living area as well as a world-class equestrian facility. Thus the Meadows was conceptualized and presented to the City Council. As presented, the council wanted to see a few tweaks and changes to the basic design of the project and we obliged in making this an even better fit for San Juan. Here is an overview of some of the changes we’ve made to the project LeSS HORSeS - We’ve heard questions as to whether a 775-horse facility is going to be acceptable to our neighbors. We have listened to these concerns and have agreed with city staff assessment of 536 horses for our project. The city’s code allows close to 1,100 horses on a property as large as ours. We are at half of

Courtesy rendering

what code allows and the number of horses per acre is significantly less than the other facilities in town. Stand-aLOne PaRking fOR diStRitO- We have listened to the residents and the City Council’s concern over the parking structure. We have taken these comments to heart and have been able to reduce the height and footprint of the parking structure by one level. This new design will provide for stand-alone parking for the condominiums and mixed use residential units as well. As our project is heading to council again on October 6 we feel that with your input and that of the City Council this has become an even better project that will truly meet the needs of the community. This project will be a welcome sight for young families that would love to call San Juan home as well as longtime residents that will shop and enjoy the Distrito. The improved access to the city’s open space and expanded trail network will

benefit all residents eager to explore hillsides as well as equestrian lovers that will visit the new stables and arenas. With the council meeting coming up on October 6 I ask that you continue to send us your support and encourage the City Council to choose this lower density plan versus the higher density project of 440 homes and a 300-room hotel that is currently approved to be built. This land will be utilized for either of the two projects and it is our desire to build the community focused and less dense development we have proposed. Thank you for your continued support and input to make this project the best it can be for San Juan Capistrano. Please send your comments to me at rcerruti@ Robb Cerruti is vice president of Advanced Real Estate Services.

Approved Development on the left and the proposed development is on the right. The dark area represents buildings and the lighter area represents open space. The proposed development allows for more than 60 percent open space.

Page 10 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010

Ridgewalk, 10K and Poker Ride

T Annual hird


Different Ways to Enjoy Capistrano’s Trails
Most of Capistrano’s 42 miles of trails are multi-use, meaning they are shared by walkers, runners, cyclists and equestrians. This year’s Rotary Ridgewalk will incorporate three possible ways to explore the city’s trail system: A walk, a run and a bicycle ride. The event kicks off from the southern open space off Camino Las Ramblas as a fundraiser and a way to encourage people to use San Juan’s open space. About 44 percent of the city’s 8,942 acres are open space. Just as Capistrano has expanded its open space this year with key purchases, the Rotary has expanded its October 2 Ridgewalk. For more information, see
For information about the city’s trails, see For information about the Capistrano Rotary Club, see

San Juan CapiStrano open SpaCe

Ridgewalk, 10k and Poker Ride Course Map





Homefront America, which supports the families of troops in the military, holds its second annual chili cookoff on Sunday, September 26. While the location has changed to St. Margaret’s Episcopal School on La Novia, the event promises the same great fun—and great chili—as last year’s inaugural event. In addition to teams vying to create the best chili, the day offers family fun including pie-eating contests, auctions, an old-west shootout, country western music by the popular band Swing Shift and more. There’s even a dunk tank where you can take your best shot at dropping local folks—including Mayor Lon Uso, Chief of Police Services Lt. Dan Dwyer and even Dispatch editor Jonathan Volzke—into the drink. As far as the chili, two awards will be given, one for best military team and for the best civilian team. Attendees get to sample. The day is also a tribute to service members and their families. The admission charge is $5. Net proceeds from the event will go to support on-going Homefront America programs such as scholarships, Easter baskets, school backpacks & supplies, holiday gifts, toys and meals, plus much more for our troops and their families, especially the children. Gates open at 10:30 a.m., with the open ceremonies at 11 a.m. Wear your western attire, and look out—even you might be tossed in the pokey until you can raise bail for charity. For more information, see

Photo by Sarah Borman

A day-by-day guide to what’s happening in and around town the next two weeks.


2:30-6:30 p.m. Live music at Swallow’s Inn; continues into the night starting at 8:30 p.m. with Rob Staley Band. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,


9 p.m. Live music at BeachFire Ladera. 25682 Crown Valley, Ladera Ranch, 949.542.7700,




9 p.m. Live music at BeachFire Ladera. 25682 Crown Valley, Ladera Ranch, 949.542.7700,

8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. On Wednesdays, SJC residents with a valid photo ID may pay for one adult admission and bring in a guest for free. Admission $5-$9. 26801 Ortega Hwy., SJC, 949.234.1300,

11 a.m.-5 p.m. A Western Themed family oriented, communitywide, amateur chili cookoff to benefit our troops and military families. Tickets $5 each. St. Margaret Episcopal School, Gateway Field 31641 La Novia, SJC, 949.248.9468,

8 p.m. Multi-talented musician/instrumentalist plays at The Coach House also with Toulouse Engelhardt / Agent 22. Tickets $22.50. 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano, 949.496.8930,


3 p.m.-7 p.m. Every Wednesday at El Camino Real and Yorba; 949.493.4700. 7 p.m. Popular musician performs everything at Ruby’s Sky Ranch every Wednesday. 31781 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.496.7829,


7:30 p.m.-11 p.m. Live music at The Vintage. 26701 B Verdugo St., SJC, 949.661.3400, 8:30 p.m. Swallow’s Inn. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,


10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Lively and harmonious bluegrass music during brunch at San Clemente’s newest bar and kitchen The Next Door. Every Saturday. 647 Camino de los Mares, San Clemente, 949.940.8845,


8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Mission San Juan Capistrano participates in the 6th Annual Museum Day by offering free admission to Smithsonian Magazine readers and visitors. 26801 Ortega Hwy., SJC, 949.234.1300,


2:30 p.m. Swallow’s Inn. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,

7 p.m.-8 p.m. Self-defense class for women also with exercises for improving health and fitness. Drop-ins $10. First class free. Zax Studios of Martial Arts, 33155 Camino Capistrano Suite B, 949.388.5802,


7 p.m. Hit band plays at The Coach House also with Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad / Kinetix / Jahrootsalem. Tickets $15. 33157 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.496.8930,

10 a.m.-5 p.m. Exhibit at the Discovery Science Center designed for kids (and kids at heart) who love space and want to learn about the science of space, rockets and engineering. Adults $12.95, kids $9.95. 2500 N. Main Street, Santa Ana, 714.542.2823,


10 a.m. Special screening of the movie Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps for parents of infants at the Krikorian, tickets $6.75. 641 Camino de los Mares, San Clemente, 949.661.7469,

8 a.m.-12 p.m. Help remove trash and debris from local creeks at Descanso Park, near City Hall. Volunteers get a free T-shirt and lunch. 32400 Paseo Adelanto, SJC, 949.493.1171,


8:30 p.m. Up-and-coming country band at Swallow’s Inn. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188, 7 p.m. The library hosts a showing of Na Kamalei: The Men of Hula that explores the art of hula dancing. Donation of $2. 31495 El Camino Real, SJC, 949.248.5132,

12 p.m.-2 p.m. Try your luck at finding the gold in a customdesigned trough at Mission SJC. Free with admission $5-$9. 26801 Ortega Hwy., SJC, 949.234.1300,



10 a.m. The San Juan Chamber celebrates the grand opening of SeaFit Studios. Free event. 31654 Rancho Viejo Road, Suite A, SJC, 949.388.0002,

6:30 p.m. Free dance lessons and DJ Bubba at Swallow’s Inn. Free popcorn. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,


10 a.m.-2 p.m. The Ark of San Juan hosts a pet adoption at PetCo on Camino Capistrano in the Von’s Plaza. 949.388.0034,

8 p.m. Singer/songwriter at The Coach House. Tickets $22.50. 33157 Camino Capistrano, 949.496.8930,



6 p.m.-9 p.m. The solo mariachi guitarist plays at El Adobe every Friday and Saturday night. 31891 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.1163,

4 p.m.-10:30 p.m. Traditional fundraising event includes a barbecue dinner from Claim Jumper Restaurants, rider demonstrations, country carnival games and prizes, silent and live auctions, live music and dancing. Tickets available. 26284 Oso Road, 949.240.8441 ext. 101,



8 p.m. Mellow band performs at Swallow’s Inn as part of the NEW beach-themed Tuesday evenings. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,

9 p.m. Live ’80s music at BeachFire Ladera Ranch; wear island attire to get specials. 25682 Crown Valley, Ladera Ranch, 949.542.7700, (Cont. on page 20) September 24–October 7, 2010 • The Capistrano Dispatch • Page 19


Dispatch Restaurant Spotlight

By Madi Swayne

Have you eaten at this restaurant? Go to www.thecapistranodispatch. com and rate your overall experience. We’ll post the results in next week’s issue of The Dispatch.

Mario’s by the Sea

32545 Golden Lantern, Suite F, Dana Point, 949.240.1967, BEST KNOWN FOR: Large portions and a warm, friendly environment MOST POPULAR ITEM: Mostaccioli alla vodka Mario’s by the Sea is an Italian-style family restaurant that has been serving Orange County since 1989. The restaurant was opened 21 years ago by the original Mario. Mike Perakis was next in line, then, in 2007 current owner and operator, Hooshar Perakis (Mike’s son) took over the business. During that time their craveable fare has earned them a loyal following. Mario’s by the Sea’s most popular item, mostaccioli alla vodka, combines mostaccioli— prepared perfectly al denté—with a garlic, mushroom and vodka sauce. Chicken and seafood pair quite nicely with this entrée. Mario’s by the Sea is participating in Orange County Restaurant Week—September 26 through October 2—and will feature a $30 three-course meal that allows customers to select from four delicious entrees. In addition, Mario’s by the Sea has an e-club, which you can sign up for online to receive special offers and coupons. Though Mario’s offers an extensive wine list, there is no corkage fee for your first bottle of your favorite wine brought from home. PRICE RANGE: $5-$20 PAYMENT: Cash, credit card RESERVATIONS: Online or by phone HOURS: Mon.-Thurs. 5 p.m. – 9 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 5 p.m.-10 p.m. and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Web Extra: Online voters gave

The Next Door

647 Camino de los Mares, San Clemente, 949.940.8845
(Rated on a scale of 1–5 stars)

Last issue online voters gave

The Hot Lunch Lady

San Clemente residents and Mario’s by the Sea regulars, Charise (left) and Teresa Erickson enjoy their favorite dish, Chicken alla vodka and a glass of the house wine, which both described as “Fantastic!” Photo by Madi Swayne

31115 Rancho Viejo Road, San Juan Capistrano, 949.218.4300
(Rated on a scale of 1–5 stars)

ABOUT OUR REVIEWS: In each issue we’ll highlight universally critical points including “Most Popular Dish,” “Best Known For” and “Price Range.” But most importantly, we’re inviting you to participate each week and rate the restaurant based on your experiences. Go to and under “Restaurant Guide,” rate it from 1 to 5, then share your thoughts on the Dispatch forums.
(Cont. from page 19)


7:30a.m.-5 p.m. Join SJC Chamber members for the business event at the Long Beach Convention Center. Free admission. 300 Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, winningstrategies/index.html,


Self-Titled Musings
Pete Yorn set for first-ever show at The Coach House
ete Yorn’s fifth solo studio effort and Vagrant Records debut, sees the Los Angelesbased singer/songwriter peeling away the baroque orchestrations of his critically acclaimed previous work to expose a beating rock ‘n’ roll heart. Much of the self-titled album’s raw power comes courtesy of producer Frank Black, who in 2008 invited Yorn up to a Salem, Courtesy photo Ore. studio for some spontaneous sessions. The result is exuberant and edgy, with songs like The Chase and the album-opening Precious Stone ringing out loud and strong with chiming guitars, soaring harmonies and Yorn’s soul-wrenchingly wrecked vocals. “It just makes me want to put my fist in the air,” Yorn says of the new album. “There’s something about it that’s really empowering. It’s a minimalist record for me, all of the instrumentation is distilled down to a more simple form.” Your fifth studio album is set to release on September 28, 2010, the same day as your show at the Coach House. I’m excited. It will be like a record-release celebration. I’m looking forward to playing live at the Coach House as I’ve never played there but I’ve heard about it for many years. What kind of set will the audience be in store for at the Coach House? I will certainly be focusing on my latest material but will also be including older songs from previous records. There are some great rock riffs on the new album that are reminiscent of a combination of Ramones, The Pixies and so on. Who are you inspired by? Who has influenced your sound the most? I began playing the drums and guitar when I was 13 or 14 and at that time I was into The Smiths, REM and The Cure. As I got older, I listened to Neil Young, The Who, Springsteen and so on. I like to go with the flow and whatever feels good. How was it working with Frank Black, of Pixies fame, on the new album? Frank was instrumental on this record. It’s my most rockin’ record yet. He produced it and got me to bring out the rock in me. For a free download of the latest single off Pete’s new album, go to Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m. Advanced tickets are $22.50 and can be purchased at The Coach House or online at www.thecoachhouse. com. For more information call 949.496.7935. CD —A.J. Bardzilowski/ David Zimmerle


7:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Celebrate healthy outdoor living with the community by running a 10k or walking on the Ridge Trail. Kicks off in the parking lot at the end of Camino Las Ramblas. Cost $15 for the walk; $35 for the 10K. 949.493.5911,




11 a.m. the library hosts a free showing of the animated feature Monsters, Inc. for the whole family to enjoy. Includes free popcorn! 31495 El Camino Real, SJC, 949.493.1752,

9 p.m. Live music at BeachFire Ladera Ranch. 25682 Crown Valley, 949.542.7700,


10 a.m. Discover 200 years of San Juan Capistrano architecture on a 90-minute guided walk that includes adobes, Spanish-era dwellings and modern buildings. Meet at Verdugo Street. Occurs every Saturday. $5 donation. 949.489.0736.

11 a.m. Children of all ages are invited for stories and crafts in Spanish and English. No registration required.31495 El Camino Real, SJC, 949.493.1752,


12 p.m.-4 p.m. Capo Animal Rescue Effort hosts a pet adoption every Saturday at PetSmart. A gallery of available pets is online. 33963 Doheny Park Road, 949.240.1735,



8 p.m.-9 p.m. An hour of learning, games and fun around the campfire at Caspers Wilderness Park. Free; parking $5. 33401 Ortega Hwy., SJC, 949.923.2207,

9 p.m. Soulful Originals at BeachFire Ladera Ranch. 25682 Crown Valley, 949.542.7700, 8 p.m. Frontman from ’80s band, Men at Work, performs at The Coach House. Tickets $20. 33157 Camino Capistrano, 949.496.8930,

2 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Old World in Huntington Beach celebrates German style with beer, bratwurst and more. 7561 Center Ave #49 Huntington Beach, 714.895.8020,

7 p.m. League of Women Voters will conduct a Candidate’s Forum for San Juan Capistrano City Council Candidates in Marco Forester School. 25601 Camino Del Avion, 949.492.7675.


8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Children and adults can listen to Spanish-speaking audio tours at the Mission daily. Admission of $5-$9. 26801 Ortega Hwy., SJC, 949.234.1300,



7 p.m. Contemporary jazz concert at The Coach House. Tickets $20. 33157 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.496.8930,

8 p.m. Eclectic singer/songwriter at The Coach House. $25. 33157 Camino Capistrano, 949.496.8930,


6 p.m. Get your steaks made-to-order at Swallow’s Inn and enjoy drink specials and more. 31786 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 949.493.3188,

9 p.m. Acoustic guitar music at BeachFire Ladera Ranch. 25682 Crown Valley, 949.542.7700,

*For our full calendar, visit the “Event Calendar” at
Have an event? Send your listing to

Page 20 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010

B u s i nfeaturing s Juan Capistrano businesseso r y e s San D i r e c t exclusively The only directory
Air Conditioning
DC Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning 949.365.9044

Locals Only
PHArMACy rooF MAnAgeMent ServiCeS
949.212.0499 The Medicine Shoppe 949.661.9141 Bryan Krueger Enterprises, Inc. 31952 del obispo #270, 33208 Paseo de Cerveza, Ste. B




eLeCtriC ContrACtorS
Four-A Electric 949.240.8844 32432 Alipaz, Ste. C,

Air Conditioning & HeAting
Oasis Air Conditioning & Heating 949.420.1321 31648 rancho viejo rd., Ste. A,


PHoto & digitAL LAB
San Juan Photo & Digital 949.661.5668 32301 Camino Capistrano,

Capistrano Valley Christian Schools 949.493.5683 32032 del obispo Street,

Antique reStorAtion
Sarah Whitcomb Antique Restoration 949.234.9740 32432 Alipaz, Ste. B,

A to Z Leak Detection 949.499.4464 Pronto Plumbing (El Plomero) 949.246.3589 31878 del obispo Ste. 118-227, SCP Plumbing/ CuraFlo of O.C. 949.493.2426 27126 Paseo espada Ste. 705, DC Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning 949.365.9044

Senior HoMe CAre
Alerra Home Health Services 949.545.6646 32332 Camino Capistrano #205,

SLAB LeAk rePAir
SCP Plumbing/ CuraFlo of O.C. 949.493.2426 27126 Paseo espada Ste. 705,

ASSiSted Living
Del Obispo Terrace 949.496.8802 32200 del obispo Street,

Proudly Serving South Orange County Since 1975
Lic# 310654

Reeltime Sight and Sound 26381 via de Anza, 949-240-0555

Law Office of Skinner & Skinner 31461 rancho viejo rd., Ste. 103 949.248.0260

Mission Parish School 949.234.1385 31641 el Camino real,

WAter dAMAge
Jarvis Restoration 949.362.5388 31942 Paseo Sagrado,

Auto rePAir
Star Motors 32959 Calle Perfecto 949.443.1970

Printing OC 949.388.4888 27134 Paseo espada #B 203,

BAndS / entertAinMent
Evergrove 949.661.2054


WoMen’S CLotHing
Blu:Echo 949.496.4810 31878 del obispo (Marshalls Center)

Comerica Bank 949.234.9683 32022 Camino Capistrano, Suite F3, Independence Bank 949.373.1570 Marbella Plaza 31107 rancho viejo rd., Pacific Mercantile Bank 949.487.4200 31601 Avenida Los Cerritos, Ste 100,

EmbroidMe – SJC 949.276.7910 Las Golandrinas Mexican Food 949.240.3440 32241 Camino Capistrano , A102 27124 Paseo espada #803, Skimmer’s Panini Café 949.276.6300 exPerienCe tHe MiSSion 31451 rancho viejo rd. #103, Historic Mission San Juan Capistrano Exciting New Audio Tour 949.234.1300 26801 ortega Highway,


Adelanto Studio Yoga & Life Arts 32118 Paseo Adelanto, Ste.9, 949.705.7344

Mother Earth Flowers 949.493.4400 32158 Camino Capistrano, Ste. 105

HoMe tHeAter
Reeltime Sight and Sound 949.240.0555 26381 via de Anza,

BeAuty SALon
Charisma Salon & Supply 32301-F Camino Capistrano Curtis Michaels Hair Salon 31882 del obispo, Ste. 150, 949.240.1200 949.240.9240

Jennifer Wong, Cht - Certified Hypnotherapist & Meditation Instructor 949.878.6870 30320 rancho viejo rd. Ste. #103,

this handy, cost-friendly, go-to reference tool keeps your business in front of potential customers 24/7.

BuSineSS CoMPuter ServiCeS
Lightning Technology, Inc. 949.488.0029 32963 Calle Perfecto,

Capistrano Health & Life 949.697.9454

CoMMunity ServiCeS
CHEC Family Resource Center 31411 La Matanza Street, Suite B 949.489.7742

Abby’s Fine Jewelry Design 949.493.3632 32382 del obispo, Ste. C-3,

CoMPuter trAining

Orange Coast Database Association 949-489-1472 32422 Allipaz St., Ste. B, Kitchen & Bath Designs 27231 ortega Hwy., unit B

kitCHen deSign


Get your Business listeD toDay.
Call Angela edwards at 949.682.1667 or email

CoMPuter ServiCeS

San Clemente Computer & Network Services Sparklean Laundry 949.276.1581 31952 del obispo



ConStruCtion ServiCeS
Tony Brown Design & Build e-mail

MoLd reMovAL

949.661.2054 Jarvis Restoration 949.362.5388 31942 Paseo Sagrado,



Friess Electric 949.248.4222 Capistrano Health & Life 32332 Camino Capistrano, Suite 102

Business Directory
Garage sale listings are FREE!
Call 949.388.7700, ext. 103 Submit your ad online at

garage Sale
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO LOMA VISTA COMMUNITY SALE Saturday Oct. 2nd, 7:30am-2pm. La Novia, Cerro Rebal streets.

NOTARY PUBLIC I’ll come to you - serving SJC, Dana Point San Clemente. Call Karen at (949) 842-6932.

HelP WaNteD
OFFICE ASST FOR SJC CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. p/t, Tues/Fri, 9-4. $10 per hr. Other days as need. Must be highly organized, professional, proficient in customer service, data entry and filing. Excellent phone etiquette and computer skills required. Email resume to or fax (949) 489-2695.

MiSC. eDUCatiON ServiCeS
IN-HOME TEACHER I am credentialed and have a Masters Degree in Education. I will develop lessons for students based on their current needs. I have 10 years experience in all grade levels and a high success rate with student grade improvement even with the most reluctant learner. Excellent references upon request. Call 949-363-8414.

MiSC. HealtH ServiCeS
FREE PREGNANCY TESTS Confidential services & help when you need it most. Call 218-5777; walk-ins welcome. 1450-B N. El Camino Real, SC. Pregnancy Resource Center

OtHer iNtereStiNg StUff
VENDORS NEEDED! For Dana Point church craft fair, Oct 23. $25/ booth. 949-493-3414. Email:

Do you want to reach 11,500+ people in the San Juan Capistrano area? Then you need to be in the Capistrano Dispatch. Call us today!

PlaCe YOUr BUSiNeSS CarD Here

949.388.7700 ext. 104

September 24–October 7, 2010 • The Capistrano Dispatch • Page 23


By Chris Bashaw The Capistrano Dispatch

friday 9.24
Coffee Chat 8 a.m. The Capistrano Dispatch hosts a spirited town hall forum on community issues. All are welcome. Camino Real Playhouse, on El Camino Real, just south of Ortega Highway. Occurs every Friday.

tuesday 9.28
CUSD Board of Education Meeting 7 p.m. CUSD Headquarters, 33122 Valle Road,

Saturday 10.09
Barn Dance and Equestrian Fair 6 p.m.–10 p.m. Organizers have added a few perks for the general admission (aka Vaqueros) this year that include complimentary appetizers, picnic-style seating and for all party goers over 21, beer tasting compliments of Capistrano Brewery and complimentary Wine Tasting sponsored by Trader Joe’s. Swing Shift returns and the Kelly Boyz will lead the dancing. The Vintage and Bad to the Bone will cater the event, held at Blenheim Farms off Ortega Highway. General Admission $35, VIP available. See www.

tuesday 10.05
City Council Meeting 6:30 p.m. City Hall, 32400 Paseo Adelanto.

saturday 9.25
Annual Creek Cleanup 8 a.m.–noon. Los Rios Historical Park. Volunteers scour Capistrano’s creeks for trash, then enjoy a free Rotary barbecue. Volunteers also get free T-shirts. See

Friday 10.08
Next regular issue of The Dispatch publishes.

Darnold Honored for Leadership
The Capistrano Dispatch

Capo Habitat Project Nearly Complete
Left to Right: Lizzie Evers, Hailey Chisholm, Shea O’Reilly, Father Damien Giap, Max Champion, Chase Coyle. Photo by Chris Bashaw


nspired by their faith and a call to charity, several students at Junipero Serra Catholic High School have recently launched the campus’ first Habitat for Humanity Club. “I always preach to students about ‘Love thy neighbor,’ and this gives them a concrete way to do it,” said faculty advisor Father Damien Giap. “Giving time is the most valuable thing you can do; being Catholic, it’s the most effective way to show one’s love of neighbor.” The club was conceptualized by President Max Champion last February when he came to Secretary Hailey Chisholm with the idea of creating a chapter of the organization, which builds houses for homeless and low-income families worldwide. High schools in the Capistrano Unified School District, like Dana Hills and San Clemente, have their own Habitat for Humanity clubs. “Other schools have pretty well-established chapters,” said Champion, “We have the resources [to make it work].” Added Chisholm, “[Habitat for Humanity] is a world renowned, non-profit organization and it’s hands-on; you’re actually doing something where you can feel gratification… you get what you put in twofold.” Chisholm’s sentiment is one that is most evident in the group. “It’s more rewarding than giving people your cash,” said Lizzie Evers, the club’s public relations representative. The first project for JSerra’s Habitat for Humanity Club involves gathering housewarming gifts in baskets that will be given to families receiving a home from Habitat for Humanity. Items inside of the basket include popcorn, movies and other assorted items to help

residents transition into their new lives. The baskets will be delivered to residents on September 25 as part of a dedication process of 18 new homes off Calle Rolando. Sharon Ellis, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Orange County said she’s “always impressed with schools whose students reach out to the community to make the lives of others better. “I’m delighted that the students of JSerra Catholic High School were touched by Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, we look forward to working with them,” she added. But creating a Habitat for Humanity chapter isn’t as easy as simply saying you’re going to do it. Champion and the rest of his executive board had to draft their own constitution, bylaws and mission statement, as required by the organization’s headquarters in Atlanta. They must also file annual reports of their budget and the progress of any projects they take on. Even with State Farm Insurance sponsoring Habitat for Humanity’s youth programs, Treasurer Shea O’Reilly said the club had to take out a $250 loan from JSerra to pay an initial fee to the national organization. Other than that, she said, “[we] rely on club members to bring what they can.” Chisholm clarified that anyone can donate to JSerra’s Habitat for Humanity Club, but said only JSerra students could join it. “We are very open to donations,” Champion chimed in. Habitat for Humanity of Orange County spokeswoman Gladys Hernandez said San Juan Capistrano is the first city in Southern Orange County to have homes built by Habitat for Humanity. To learn more about JSerra’s chapter, search their page on or go to www.jserrahabitat. CD

apistrano resident and Rotarian Mike Darnold, who does student intervention and family support at Dana Hills High School under a city contract, has received Rotary District 5320’s 2010-2011 Award for Leadership Excellence. The award was announced and presented by Rotarian District Governor Johrita Solari at the district’s annual luncheon on September 10 honoring the top Rotarian in three areas—Business Leadership, Business Ethics, and Servant Leadership. Initially, 46 clubs in Orange and Los Angeles counties selected the honorees. From those the final winners were selected by district-level judges. Darnold’s history of leadership in supporting South County youth and his current activities as founder and director of Mike Darnold accepts his recent Early Intervention Team award. Courtesy photo prompted his San Juan Capistrano club’s nomination for the District honor. Early Intervention Team is a non-profit alcohol and drug awareness program that reaches out to educate and support struggling teens and families throughout Orange County. As his award states, he has been helping kids get healthy and succeed for over 20 years and is highly respected by his professional peers in education, city and state government, and law enforcement. He is a pioneer in his field, a leading authority on what leads to drug abuse, and a facilitator and advisor on escaping a life anchored by prescription and illegal drugs. One of Darnold’s longest running and most valued contributions to young people, and one for which he is most proud, is that of being founder and current director of District 5320’s RYLA Camp in Idyllwild. RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) go annually to selected high school juniors from over 65 area schools, who meet for an extended weekend in the mountains. There they build on their self-confidence, leadership, social and fellowship skills and interact with a wide range of fellow campers from different backgrounds and cultures. The next camp is May 2011. See http:/ / for more information. CD

Page 24 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7, 2010



Underdogs No More
By Andrea Swayne The Capistrano Dispatch



Mustangs vs. Lions Saddleback College September 24, 7 p.m.,
The Lions look to add another win to its 2-0 record as they are set to face a tough stampede of Mustang players from Trabuco Hills High.

White Sox vs. Angels Angel Stadium September 24, 7:05 p.m.
Get out there and support the Angles as they host a series with the Chicago White Sox before wrapping up their home schedule against Oakland on Monday. Info: www.

Red Bulls vs. LA Galaxy, Home Depot Center September 24, 8 p.m.
This is a crucial match for the Western Conference leading Galaxy as they host a New York Red Bulls squad that is making a case for first place out east. Info: www.

Dana Hills InvitaTrojans vs. Stallions tional, Dana Hills Tesoro High School High School September 30, 7 p.m. September 25, 8 a.m.
The best of the best collide on the course at Dana Hills High School in this annual meet that draws top schools and its athletes. Info: www.

The Stallions host University High School in a key game as San Juan Hills looks to continue its trek for respect in 2010.

San Juan residents are part of champion Dana Point Co-ed Softball team
grew up in the area and we had a great time this season.” In the Wednesday Night Softball League, Ricardo’s Place was runner up behind champions Where My Pitches At? The season playoffs also crowned champion teams in adult co-ed kickball. CD


our-year underdogs, Dr. Eckl’s Green Team, became the champions of the Dana Point Co-ed Monday Night Softball League at the finals on Sept. 20. The Green Team—who are all about helping the environment—is sponsored by Lawrence E. Eckl II D.D.S of San Clemente and includes players from Dana Point, San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano. The lineup includes: Lawrence Eckl, Matthew Eckl, Brittany Eckl, Sean Kelly, Natalie Kelly, Claire Kelly, Mike Kelly, Ryan Kelly, Michelle Hribar, Theresa Fraijo, Daniel Evans, Elizabeth Evans, Jodie Duke, Jeff Duke, Christopher Linville, Stephanie Gast, and Nick Buskirk and (not pictured) Natalie Hribar. The photo also includes team mascots Heidi Eckl, Emma Eckl, Charlie Eckl and Vance Fraijo. “We tend to be a ‘Bad News Bears’ kind of team, but really stepped it up this year, so we’re extremely proud of ourselves,” said team member Michelle Hribar. “We’re a group of good friends (and siblings) that

City of Dana Point Adult Softball and Kickball Championship Results
MONDAY NIGHT LEAGUE: Softball champions: Dr. Eckl’s Green Team (9); Softball runner up: Feel The Heat (5). Kickball champions: Cobra Kai (2); Kickball runner up: Skills That Kill (1). WEDNESDAY NIGHT LEAGUE: Softball champions: Where My Pitches At? (14); Softball runner up: Ricardo’s Place (6). Kickball champions: Absolut Ballers (8); Kickball runner up: Dirtbags (1).

Four-year underdogs, Dr. Eckl’s Green Team, became the champions of the Dana Point Co-ed Monday Night Softball League. Courtesy photo

The San Juan Hills Stallions varsity football team has moved to 3-0 in pre-league action. San Juan Hills varsity football beat El Modena 24-14 to move to 3-0. The game featured a touchdown run by Connor O’Modhrain, a blocked punt-touchdown by Kyle Bauer, a touchdown pass from Wil Acromite to Michael Perryman and a 36-yard field goal by George Winckel. A week earlier, the Stallions rolled over Yorba Linda 42-14. That game included Bauer returning a kick off for a touchdown for the Stallions. TAILGATE PARTY SET: The Stallions game against University High on Thursday, September 30 will feature a tailgate party from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Food will be catered by Bad to the Bone, and include pulled pork, BBQ chicken, beans, coleslaw, roll and a drink. The cost is $5 per person for Stallion booster members and $12 for adult non-members. Students and Stallions staff are $8. Reservations for the tailgate, at Tesoro High, where San Juan Hills plays its home games, are due by September 28. See for more details.

Photo courtesy Greg Hawkins/

Page 26 • The Capistrano Dispatch • September 24–October 7