El Cajon, CA
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Articles by Albert H. Fulcher

Following in his father’s footsteps, there are not many things more important to one of the toughest kids on dirt as Joaquin “Boogie” Saenz is bucking his way to the American Youth Bull Riding Finals in Ignacio, CO Nov. 16—18. Although from Valley Center, his father, professional bull rider Junior Saenz and Boogie are a staple in Lakeside, both participating in the Lakeside Rodeo and Bulls only Rodeo.

Safety and awareness was top of the list at the Second Amendment Awareness Event at the Lemon Grove Rod & Gun Club in Alpine. Around 130 people attended this annual event, collaboration between Assemblyman Randy Voepel, 71st District, the San Diego County Gun Owners Political Action Committee and the California Rifle and Pistol Association on Sept. 29.

We are so excited about the Best of East County Reader’s Poll this year. After our successful inaugural red carpet event last year at the Olaf Wieghorst Museum, we decided to start voting earlier so we can plan an even better event this year. It was wonderful to see all the winners come by, pick up their awards and get to personally congratulate each and every one of them. And we want you to be there as one of our Best of East County 2017 winners.

Talking about the arts in our community is definitely a passion of mine. This week has been a remarkable week for East County arts, and every time that I see remarkable art, the artists at work and get a chance to talk to them about the art, it enriches my life in so many ways. Although it might not be art that I do myself, I pull from the creativeness of all of the artist I meet and absorb it like a sponge.

“I often think, if more people could only take a few more minutes a day to appreciate the similarities and important differences in our humanity, perhaps a new seed of understanding would begin to germinate. This would have the potential of shaping a whole new process of evaluating and understanding the personhood of all members of our global family, including our nearest neighbor of the same color and cultural heritage.

The alley between Main Street and Rea Avenue were aflutter with businesses preparing for the comeback Alley Cat Art Walk after a four-year hiatus. By 6:00 p.m., businesses were ready, vendors in place and the alley once again turned into an event that focused solely on the downtown El Cajon businesses. With art, music, food, crafts and much more, this year’s Alley Cat Art Walk was more than successful, opening back up the alley for those who love to support the arts.

A hometown fundraiser, the Once in a Blue Moon Gala Dinner and Auction was set at the beautiful River Valley Equestrian Center in Lakeside on Oct. 16. A major fundraiser for the Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy the evening was filled with a fine BBQ dinner, live and silent auctions and opportunity raffles that ranged in prices that gave most everyone in attendance a chance to help raise money for the River Park. This year’s gala is special as it was dedicated to the kids of Lakeside and many underprivileged children in East County.

Opened in October 2016, the Hollywood Casino in Jamul is in full operation as the newest casino in San Diego County. With more than 1,700 slot machines, 40 different tables ranging from carnival games, blackjack, and roulette, business is going well for the casino owned by the Jamul Indian Village and operated by Penn National Gaming. It is very close in proximity and an easy drive. It has the latest in slot machines including The Simpsons and Kitty Glitter Classic.

I have been all over East County and though it is not something new, the disappearance of our backcountry is becoming more and more evident. I can go to one place, then return a week or two later and see something new. And most times, it is an unwelcomed sight.

When you walk into Art World Western Heritage Gallery it is overwhelming when you think about where to begin. From front to back, top to bottom the gallery is filled with one of a kind fine art collections, prints from the greatest Western artists, sculptures, and an impressive avant-garde collection. It is a museum of art history from all over the world and a collection that has taken owners Floyd Jones and his wife Helen 40 years to collect.