Escondido Stories

The mystery of the famous waffles

The unlikely international intrigue of a mall kiosk

The inconsistencies started piling up. Knowing I would wind up in Escondido at the end of a long workday, I poked around online to find some convenient place to grab a snack before tackling the ...

A thief, a thief, a thief, a thief, a thief...

Our friendship is ceased and null

“I was gonna take Lyft and I wanted to check my balance. I had a negative fourteen cents. She took my very last dollar.” A woman identified as “Sharon” testified this morning that her former ...

Hyundai out raced police copter on I-15 shoulders

Woman loses use of eye, trial suspended

A mis-trial was declared this morning in the case against Eric Wilkes Durland, 27, who was accused of seriously injuring a woman when he crashed into her car while evading police, four months ago. Defense ...

One million dollar houses atop San Pasqual Valley

EIR says no problem in wildfires

When Charlie Jancic thinks about wildfire in the San Pasqual Valley, it’s from real life. In 2007, the Witch Fire and Guejito Fire took his house. “The roads aren’t great — they’re mostly two lanes, ...

The Benadryl did it

Defense claims antihistamine delirium caused killing

“This is not a whodunnit,” the defense attorney told the jury yesterday, May 10. “This was in fact a killing that was done by David McGee.” David Noel McGee Jr., 26, is facing one charge ...

How is this cold sandwich better than a hot one?

The Reader finally gets to Rock n' Jenny's Italian Subs

It looks like I've missed many opportunities to visit Rock n' Jenny's Italian Subs. The East Coast style Italian deli has been dishing up sandwiches and pasta since 1989, and I've always driven right past ...

Escondido's elderly deal with San Francisco's slick

Alarm-permit fee collectors raise ire of son

In 2004 Escondido passed an ordinance to charge an annual fee to register burglar alarms. When the program rolled out, affecting both homes and businesses, alarm owners were confused and frustrated by questions about their ...

Kit Carson Park: where organized activities meet open space

Hike includes internationally know sculpture garden

Something for everyone in Escondido (especially on weekends and holidays).

Seller is willing to accept Bitcoin

The value is in the land, 290 acres of it

“Welcome to Rancho Escondido Groves, your very own private 290.95-acre luxury mountain top estate.” So begins the sales pitch for the property at 1830 Rincon Avenue, in equal parts a development opportunity and potential paradise ...

Stone Brewing goes after MillerCoors

"The Gargoyle does not countenance such misdirection of consumers."

The battle between San Diego independent breweries and Big Beer continues, and this time the fight is going to federal Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Escondido-based Stone Brewing, long one of the most ...

Pad Thai three ways

There's more than one road to authenticity

Look near the top of any Thai restaurant menu in America, and you're sure to find one Thai dish in particular: Pad Thai. However, as chef Nattapon "Nat" Thitathan explained to me in a recent ...

Escondido accountant on probation

Caught insider trading, made over $27K, penalized over $50K

Donald Paul Jones, an Escondido accountant, has been put on probation for three years and suspended from practice for 45 days. The California Board of Accountancy announced the decision December 28 of last year. Jones ...

San Diego wort workers wanted

Brewers far and wide seek those who've run with the big dogs

Back in June, Copenhagen brewery Mikkeller introduced a new hire for its 12-foeder, wild-ale brewhouse, Baghaven: "This is Ehren Schmidt, our new Master Blender," the announcement read, "A man that knows his shit." Schmidt had ...

King Schascha of the dancehall

Trinidadian and Tobagonian toaster once a Marine, now a soccer lobbyist

Frontman Dave Wakeling is the only original member of the two-tone British ska band that moved from England to Southern California over 25 years ago. He calls all the shots. “The rest of us are ...

Home invader gets 180 days in the clink

Plea deal drops charges of stalking, battery, a count of resisting a police officer...

Noe Colimas Valladares, 28, was sentenced to 180 days in local jail on Monday, December 11th. He was arrested in August after he reportedly entered a home in Escondido and was shot by the man ...

PO'd to miss San Diego's big snow day

"I actually saw all the nuns smile, while they were playing in the snow.”

Fifty years ago yesterday, on December 13, 1967, from Borrego Springs to downtown to Oceanside, snow fell in San Diego County. Perhaps the most dramatic scene was a blanket of snow on the beaches of ...

Mobile-home owner sees water bill jump

Carefree Rancher's quixotic quest to find out what's with the doubled cost

It's one of those fuzzy numbers on a utility bill; in this case, a water-sevice fee charged by Carefree Ranch Mobile Home Park in Escondido, where 77 of its 185 spaces fall under the city's ...

Saw suffering Christians in Thailand

Won't be surprised by heaven's big circles

Membership: 400 Pastor: Tim Spivey Age: 41 Born: Long Beach Formation: Pepperdine University, Malibu; Abilene Christian University, Abilene, TX Years in ministry: 20 San Diego Reader: What is your main concern as a member of ...

Trout Derby drama at Dixon Lake

Boyfriend's fish caught near contest's closing has 1/3 oz. advantage

The City of Escondido’s 39th annual Trout Derby at Dixon Lake attracted hundreds of anglers from around Southern California on December 1–3. Even without the planting of huge Nebraska tailwalkers at this year’s opener, stringers ...

Escondido trout to come from Sierra foothills

Dixon to get 33,000 pounds, Wohlford 25,000 from Snelling trout farm

It won’t be a record-breaking trout season at Escondido’s lakes this winter, but the number of fish available for angler’s stringers will multiply greatly. Over the summer, the city received three bids from hatcheries to ...

Rent-control battle cry in Escondido

"We were supposed to have a meeting, but they locked up the tennis courts."

For years the Eagles Point apartment complex, a collection of suburban four-story buildings comprising 519 units along East Grand Avenue in eastern Escondido, has drawn harsh criticism from residents and neighbors. Negative reviews, some dating ...

Dixon Lake — small lake, huge fish

Nov. 18-19 trout opener will draw the bass

Dixon Lake, one of the smaller lakes in San Diego County, has proven itself mighty in the bass fishing realm. From April 2001 until May 2003, the little lake within the Escondido city limits produced ...

Escondido library to be run by Maryland company

Critic notes contract increases annually; council votes to save money

On October 18th, dozens of Escondido residents rallied one last time to keep their public library from being outsourced to an East Coast company. The library belongs to the community, they told the city council; ...

Food-insecure in Escondido

"I know what the pain of not eating is like — it's incredibly painful."

Mike Dolbow has grand plans to bring meals to the food-insecure, including not just the residents of his trailer park in rural Escondido but throughout the state. But first, he needs a truck. I meet ...

Nerd-Con controversy

No cred given to co-creator of annual gathering of freaks and geeks

Bridal-show planner Joel Jones wanted to host an event for local geeks who didn’t make it to Comic-Con. His first one-day Nerd-Con mixed fantasy nerd culture with live bands and drew 3000 to the California ...

Meth-troubled dad faces court dates

Repeat offender accused of kidnapping wife and child and more

A man who allegedly invaded a home in the remote eastern edges of Escondido, and was reportedly shot multiple times by the homeowner, is due in court on Wednesday, September 13. Noe Colimas Valladares, 28 ...

Thanks for the gas-price hike, Harvey (big jerk)

Predictable, even though West Coast's supply and main facility uninterrupted

Local gas prices jumped around 10 cents a gallon overnight on August 30, in response to the destruction and flooding from Hurricane Harvey. San Diego gas prices started rising slightly on August 25, the day ...

Gate-crashing repo man flees Escondido impound yard

“You can’t carjack your own car,” declares judge

On July 30, 2017, LeDarral Shakouriel Hollingsworth went to the Allied Gardens tow yard in Escondido to get some paperwork from his car, which had been impounded, according to his attorney. It was there, at ...

A snowball’s chance in Escondido

Baltimore-style shaved ice, best served with marshmallow sauce

If you’re interested in trying the sweetest, coldest treat you can get your hands on this summer, turn your attention to Escondido and a small shack called Baltimore Snowball. As its name suggests, the snowball ...

Escondido Feed & Pet Supply and Brewing Company

"It's a little less than 300 square feet. We had to be a little imaginative."

A 14-year homebrewer, Ketchen Smith has long dreamed of leaving his job in the medical device industry to start a brewery. "I wanted to go 15-barrel," he says, "and retire to brewing." Doing so would ...

Passing out food on the Pala reservation

Squash, peaches, nectarines

It's a slow Tuesday for Michelle Silva, a recreational aide at the Pala Youth Center near the northern border of San Diego County. Most of the center's charges, which number as many as 70 during ...

Homeless friend dies next to Auto Park Way

"I talked to him just yesterday and he seemed fine"

My husband came home on July 24, red-faced and on the verge of tears. "You aren't going to believe what happened," he said. "I was walking down the bike path near Auto Park Way and ...

Syrian refugees ask for money at Escondido Albertson's

Mixed response on West Valley Parkway

Customers Rage at Refugee Panhandlers in Front of Escondido Store A Syrian refugee family, panhandling in front of the Albertson's store at 1570 West Valley Parkway in Escondido, set off a firestorm of complaints from ...

Escondido mobile home owners push back against $7 rent increase

The dreaded long form

The rent hikes are small but steady. Escondido's mobilehome rent control ordinance protects seniors and disabled residents from steep monthly increases; not the $10 kind. However small, a routine bump in space rent can be ...

North County man on early release program re-arrested

Escondido police found stolen credit cards in his wallet

A man who was released from custody because of a California law that sent certain criminals from state prison to local jails and then “post-release community supervision,” was recently re-arrested in Escondido. David Charles Escovedo ...

North County Creeper wants to go directly to trial

The defendant couldn't wait to get out of the courtroom.

A man accused of being the North County Creeper admitted there is enough evidence to send him to trial, and thereby skipped public disclosure of details of his alleged child molestation crimes that would have ...

Free and not-free Fourth of July

Coronado, of course, but Mission Hills, Escondido, Mira Mesa and maybe a cruise on the Hornblower

God bless, John Adams. You can thank him for all the firework displays around the Fourth of July. In Philadelphia, July 4, 1777, 13 fireworks were set off to commemorate the 13 colonies. The colors ...

Escondido says no cell towers in your front yard — unless you live on a street like Citracado

Ben Hueso carries water for wireless guys

Like other cities, Escondido is planning for the mass deployment of fifth generation technology. As both officials and carriers see it, it's time to make the permit process for the "small cells" that can accommodate ...

Rancho La Costa Preserve was full of mines

Between Batiquitos Lagoon and Lake Hodges

The Rancho La Costa Preserve, located in the cities of Carlsbad and San Marcos, is a popular destination for both hikers and mountain bikers. Situated between Batiquitos Lagoon and Lake Hodges, the preserve serves as ...

Lake Dixon clean-up — do it for Dottie

The most famous largemouth bass in history

Dixon Lake is a smallish, 70-acre reservoir outside of Escondido on the skirts of the Daley Ranch. Even though the lake doesn’t cover much surface area, the dam, completed in 1971, holds up to 80-feet-deep ...

On the way to the “super bloom”

The first bite was reminiscent of a backyard barbecue

We didn’t know where we were going, not at first. All I knew was that it was a beautiful Saturday afternoon and I wanted to drive, ideally toward a field of flowers, as my news ...

Escondido neighbors call it sprawl

"Safari Highlands Ranch would be terrible for San Diego's wildlife."

On rugged land north of San Diego Safari Zoo Park, developers want to build a less exotic version of the park; a rich habitat for upper-income humans. The vision statement for Safari Highlands Ranch describes ...

North County has less heroin today

Forty-six gang members rounded up

Federal indictments unsealed yesterday (March 1) charge 55 drug dealers and gang members with crimes including money-laundering, robberies, vehicle thefts, burglaries, assaults, and trafficking in heroin, methamphetamine, and firearms. The gang members operated in North ...

The Würm has turned

Kid606 on the San Diego underground

“I was always under age when I lived in San Diego, so venues were mainly Ché Café, Soma, WorldBeat Center, and the occasional DIY thing,” says Miguel Trost de Pedro, aka Kid606, a 37-year-old electronic ...

The fight for a wood-burning fireplace

“It’s pretty nasty stuff. This stuff really is bad news.”

Several south coast counties restrict wood burning fireplaces, but San Diego isn’t one of them. Not yet. “Although it is not prohibited, wood burning in the home is a growing source of air pollution in ...

Who will drive the trout to Escondido next season?

Tailwalkers' trip from Nebraska no longer economically viable

Unfortunately, this may be the last year for large, record-setting Nebraska Tailwalker trout at three local lakes. The three-year contract with the Chaulk Mound Trout Ranch hatchery in Bridgeport, Nebraska, ends April 19, the last ...

Imagine eating woodrat stew in Felicita Park

Walk the site of one of the oldest and largest Native American villages in San Diego County.

Felicita Park provides a nice mix of easy-walking loop trails with negligible elevation conducive for young children in strollers and any fitness level. The ancient towering oaks provide shade, making this 53-acre fenced county park ...

Escondido residents resist water-treatment plant

Because: liquid ammonium sulfate, sulfuric acid, sodium bisulfite...

Escondido farms need affordable water. Though the city plans to build a recycled-water treatment plant, many residents drawn to a recent city-council meeting were not in favor of living near a “membrane filtration/ reverse osmosis ...

Soup scenario

Escondido gets organic vegan takeout

Driving along the main drag through downtown Escondido this week, I spotted a sign I’d never seen before: Vegan Soup Bar. I’d been planning on a burger, but it was raining and my feet were ...

Likely the first new suds center to open in 2017

That's Jacked Up (Brewery)

A new brewery in Escondido is newly licensed and ready to brew. Guided by the motto "Brew drink relax repeat," Jacked Up Brewery (800 W Grand Ave.) has a conditional use permit to operate in ...

Battery-powered in Escondido

New hardware touted as clean energy alternative

The nation's largest battery storage for energy is being constructed in Escondido — part of the shift away from fuel-burning power plants to cleaner energy, which can't be switched on when needed. San Diego Gas ...

Lake Wohlford opener angers anglers

Fishermen lose patience

Last week, the City of Escondido stocked Lake Wohlford with 6000 pounds of Nebraska Tailwalker rainbow trout for the annual trout opener on December 10. The lake had been closed since December 4, and the ...

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