High Fire Threat

A number of major fires raged through northern San Diego County in mid-May. On Wednesday, May 14, a fire broke out in a canyon near Hoyt Park and behind homes on Canyon Lake Drive (above). It happened quickly, and families had just minutes to evacuate.

San Diego police responded first, followed quickly by eight fire engines from San Diego, Poway, and Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar. Two water-dropping helicopters also helped douse the flames. The fire was out within 1½ hours. No one was hurt and no homes were damaged or destroyed. Scripps Ranch schools closed for two days due to the poor air quality from the other fires around the county, as well as an “abundance of caution,” as the district superintendent stated.

In those other areas, fire crews fought valiantly to save homes. Unfortunately, some were lost. However, officials say that lessons learned in the 2003 and 2007 fires led to changes that saved so many others. There was better coordination between law enforcement agencies, and more homes had defensible space, giving firefighters a chance to protect them.

The week prior to the fires, an emergency meeting was held at CALFIRE’s San Diego office to discuss this year’s wildfire threat. The following points were made:

  • CALFIRE had already suppressed more than 1,200 fires this year.
  • That’s triple the normal number for this time of the year.
  • California’s water bank, the Sierra snowpack, is at 18% of normal.
  • Hot, dry, high-velocity Santa Ana winds have already hit our county.
  • 95% of our wildfires were started by people, meaning, potentially 95% could have been prevented.

This year’s heat, humidity, wind, and vegetation-moisture levels are predictable but beyond our control. There are, however, things we can do to mitigate the danger to our neighborhoods, homes, and lives!

As the Scripps Ranch Fire Safe Council (SRFSC) has recommended for years, avoid accidentally igniting a brush fire. Create defensible space to give firefighters a chance. Have your own evacuation plan. Have your Grab and Go Bags ready. Go to pages 8 and 9 in this Newsletter for an “Advanced Preparation” checklist and a “Get Ready to Go” step-by-step plan. For the complete SRCA/SRFSC brochure “Your Evacuation Plan,” visit the SRFSC website at [srfiresafecouncil.org]. For questions or to reach us, call 945-6303.

Jerry Mitchell, SRFSC Director

Scripps Ranch Post Office Rally

As of press time, the only official U.S. Postal Service post office in Scripps Ranch was scheduled to close on Saturday, May 31. It’s at 9842 Hibert Street, in the Trader Joe’s shopping center. Many residents did not want the post office to close, and earlier in May, about 50 Scripps Ranch residents attended a rally at the Carmel Mountain Ranch regional postal facility to protest the scheduled closing (below).

The residents had been alerted to the issue via Scripps Ranch Civic Association (SRCA) emails used to inform the community of events affecting residents. The facility is a privately run USPS-contracted post office and has provided services for more than eight years. The owner was informed by the USPS that his contract would be terminated at the end of May, and no reason was given.

More than 2,500 Scripps Ranch residents, alerted through the SRCA email, signed a petition to keep the post office open. The petition was forwarded to Congressman Scott Peters. As of press time, we had not heard from his office. If there are updates, we will post them on the SRCA website at [www.scrippsranch.org].

Easy Way to Get to Middle School

Information about next year’s Marshall Middle School (MMS) Parent-Paid Bus Program is on the MMS website [www.marshallmiddle.org] now. This popular program not only gets kids to school—and back home again—safely and on time, but also helps ease traffic on busy Pomerado Road. Registration for next year’s program is open. Registration forms and process documentation can be obtained from the MMS website. Sign up now!

New Community Park and Council Office News

Scripps Ranch residents have a lot to look forward to this summer. We have a beautiful new six-acre public park that is now open in the StoneBridge Estates community. It has ball fields, a kid’s play area, and picnic tables that are perfect for warm summer evening barbecues.

Of course, what would summer in Scripps Ranch be without the annual 4th of July parade? I am proud to help support the parade with a $9,000 contribution from my Community Projects, Programs and Services fund. I hope you join me in attending this annual event. Bring a lawn chair and the kids, and we’ll celebrate the holiday as a community.

Finally, the new budget is out and I’m happy to report that there are some Scripps Ranch projects being funded this year, including street repairs and improvements, new library programs, and more. I will have more details on those once the final budget is approved. All the best,

Councilmember Mark Kersey

First Concert of the Season Featuring Caliber

We are excited about the first Symphony in the Park concert of the season! Caliber plays on Sunday, June 8, starting at 6 pm in Hoyt Park. This band provides an impressive performance of hit dance music from the ’60s to the ’90s, plus Top 40. Caliber will have you singing and dancing and, possibly, becoming part of the show!

This concert is generously hosted by Marrokal Design and Remodeling. Marrokal is an award-winning design and build team that you can trust to revive the heart of your home. Marrokal has been a dedicated concert host for Symphony in the Park for years, and we thank them for their support. We also will have face painting sponsored by the Scripps Ranch Old Pros.

Symphony in the Park is a not-for-profit organization that brings live music to the community and gives back to Scripps Ranch schools with donations to their music programs. The concerts are a great time to get together with your family and friends and enjoy the atmosphere.

Please consider donating if you haven’t done so. The concerts rely on your generosity. Visit [www.symphonyinthepark.org] for details. Become a concert host for next year, and “Like” us on Facebook.

All concerts are on Sundays at 6 pm in Hoyt Park. Here’s this year’s schedule with some of your favorite bands:

  • June 8—Caliber
  • July 13—The Heroes, with a 5:30 pm warm-up by another Scripps Ranch band Ballast
  • Aug. 10—Gary Seiler and the Coast Riders
  • Sept. 7—Rockola
  • Dec. 7—Holiday concert, 5 pm

Bring your blankets—no tarps please as they ruin the grass—low-back chairs, and picnics, but please leave your dogs at home. We look forward to seeing you all at our first concert!

Kate Northcote

Comic-ConCERT is Coming!

Can’t wait for Comic-Con? Want to show off your costume and see other fans in theirs? Channel your inner Zombie, Tinkerbell, Darth Vader, Spiderman, and join the party at Scripps Ranch High School on Friday, June 6! Watch the award-winning band, orchestra, choir, and percussion sections perform in costume to theme music from your favorite movies and shows: Superman, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, and more.

Get creative and come as your favorite character! Light sabers are okay, but please leave your realistic guns and knives at home. You’ll get to show off your costume and creativity during the show—and let the audience cheer for its favorites!

Enjoy the live entertainment by the talented SRHS musicians while you feast on dinner at this fundraiser to benefit the SRHS music programs. Food trucks and gates open at 4 pm, with performances starting at 5 pm. Tickets are $10 at the door or by advance purchase at the SRHS finance office. Bring your low-beach chairs and blankets. For more details, visit and “Like” our Facebook page at [www.facebook.com/SRHSComicConcert2014].

Join Us to Fight Back Against Cancer

The third annual Relay For Life of Scripps Ranch is on Saturday and Sunday, June 28–29, at the Scripps Ranch Community Park. This 24-hour walking and fundraising event benefits the American Cancer Society. More than 250 registered participants of all ages are expected to walk in shifts throughout the 24-hour period, fitting with the slogan, “Cancer doesn’t sleep, so neither do we.” Also, hundreds of friends, family, and community members will join in the celebration and support the “relayers” as they walk.

The festivities begin on Saturday, June 28, at 9 am with a “Celebration” ceremony to honor cancer survivors and their caregivers. At dusk a “Remembrance” ceremony will solemnly honor those lost to cancer and includes the lighting of the luminaria. The event concludes with a “Fight Back” ceremony on Sunday at 8 am, with a vow to “finish the fight.”

Daytime entertainment will feature Breez’n and Walking Water bands, and activities such as Boot Camp, Zumba, Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, and an all-day kids camp. Food, beverages, and souvenir items will be available. Cancer survivors are invited to participate in the opening ceremony by registering—free of charge—online. Team registration, donations and sponsorship, and luminaria dedications also may be done at [www.RelayForLife.org/ScrippsRanchCA]. For more information, email Prima Bernabe, event chair, at [[email protected]].

A Ride to Remember

Five Scripps Ranch 5th graders rode their bikes across California during a week in April as part of the YMCA Ride Across California. They began in Yuma where they dipped their back tires in the Colorado River. They biked for seven days, 267 miles, then dipped their front tires in the ocean in Encinitas.

They faced strong winds and one of the hottest weeks we’ve had this spring. A total of 60 5th graders completed the ride. It was a tremendous accomplishment for these amazing kids and their families!

Scripps Ranch Farmers Market New Hours

We had many requests to extend our hours, so we are now open from 9 am to 1:30 pm. Families who attend kids’ sports on Saturdays, those who work out, and those who like to sleep in now will have an extra half hour to eat and shop.

Thank you to all of our loyal shoppers. If you are a first timer, please go to the information booth and ask for your “Shopper Loyalty Card,” worth $5 when it’s full. Father’s Day gifts are available, and gift certificates make a great present.

Our farmers market benefits children’s education and our community in many ways. We offer free spaces to schools, sports, clubs, and organizations to fundraise or advertise events. Visit [www.SRFM.org] for more information. For questions, contact us at 586-7933 or [[email protected]].