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Stories by Ken Harrison

Oh, say, can you play the better "Star Spangled Banner"?

Kensington music man says inferior version of anthem plays at Olympics

Former Kensington resident Jason DeBord, a 1988 graduate of San Diego’s O’Farrell High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, did a 17-year stint on Broadway as a conductor, arranger, and musician. According to DeBord, ...

Gas-tax repeal campaign prompts motorists to drive

Cars back up for miles to queue up for Shell station's $1.99/gal. fuel

News Radio 600 KOGO held a petition-signing event on February 5 as part of afternoon talk-show host Carl DeMaio’s Reform California campaign — an attempt to roll back the new 12-cent-per-gallon gas tax and up ...

Rancho Bernardo gas at $4.19 a gallon

Still under $3 in Otay Mesa

In the last month, gas prices have unexpectedly risen in San Diego County, up to 75 cents a gallon. Ten local stations hit $4.00 a gallon on January 30, with the Chevron station at 16998 ...

So much for the bull penis tacos

San Elijo State Beach to get new food vendor

One of North County’s most unique restaurant chains, has closed its last, and original location, inside Cardiff by the Sea’s San Elijo State Beach campground. “People drive up here everyday. They’re disappointed and heartbroken it’s ...

Contenders list is long for Rocky's seat

New blood for North County's 76th Assembly District

Election season is heating up in coastal North County with incumbent Rocky Chávez (R-Oceanside) not running for re-election in the 76th Assembly District. He was elected to the seat in 2012. The district runs from ...

Encinitas enclave resists hole in wall

“Even with signs, Siri and Google Maps still takes them down our streets.”

Cardiff by the Sea residents to Mayor Blakespear: “Don’t tear down this wall!” That’s the battle cry from 40 neighbors on the private streets of Caretta Way and Starlight Drive, and a public street, Warwick ...

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 ...

Recreational fishing under attack?

“We get blamed for a lot of what the commercial guys have caused.”

“Recreational fishing in California is under attack every day,” says Wayne Kotow, executive director of the Coastal Conservation Association – California. In a year-end report to the Oceanside Senior Anglers on December 5th, he reported ...

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 ...

One of the Kings Men down

Car-club members remember drag-strip buddy John Scheunemann

In the 1950s and ’60s, the Kings Men Car Club of Solana Beach dominated the Southern California drag-racing scene. Most of the club’s members, at one time numbering up to 30, caught the racing bug ...

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 ...

Okay, California Pacific Airlines ready again

FAA-certified, but start dates out of Carlsbad airport uncertain (psst, April)

Ninety-six-year-old Rancho Santa Fe millionaire Ted Vallas held a meeting of the stockholders and supporters of his-yet-to fly California Pacific Airlines on November 16. His announcement was the first piece of good news since 2013 ...

Oceanside council finalizes harbor plan

“Visitors expect more. We’re going to give it to them.”

The battle for Oceanside Harbor’s sportfishing landing is over. After an open bid process concluded in 2016, it’s been over a year since the new Oceanside Sea Center was granted the right to negotiate the ...

Breeders' Cup bettors' brouhaha

Something went rotten in Del Mar, say seasoned horseplayers

Just after the Del Mar Racetrack showed off its beauty to the sport’s largest worldwide horse-racing audience, a controversy has developed over one betting aspect of the Breeders’ Cup. With over 400 bettors ponying up ...

Amazon Go in Encinitas no forgone conclusion

“I suspect it’s a left hand/right hand communication issue."

Last week, downtown Encinitas was all aflutter with news that the now-closed Whole Foods market in the Pacific Station Center would soon be occupied by an Amazon Go store. Made sense, considering Amazon recently purchased ...

Feel the spike in California gas prices

Coincides with introduction of undetectably cheaper "winter blend"

The spike in gas prices on November 1st should have been no surprise to motorists. The increase comes from the state legislature’s 12-cent-per-gallon gas tax passed on April 28. The tax also raised diesel prices ...

Breeders Cup horses know what they're doing

“It may look like chaos out there, but it’s well choreographed.”

With a worldwide audience larger than America’s Triple Crown (the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes), international racehorse breeders show off their finest on November 3 and 4. Over 45,000 fans, owners, and trainers will ...

Peñasquitos Boy Scouts dropped by Greyhound at 2:00 a.m.

Fake itinerary to San Diego-area beaches

In 1978, three 14-year-old Rancho Peñasquitos Boy Scouts from Troop 662 planned an outing of a lifetime. On their own, the boys planned a 21-day fishing trip to the Eastern Sierra. They bought supplies, food, ...

More lobster advice for locals

Keepable-sized bugs off the Oceanside Pier

The local lobster pursuit is in full swing. Just prior to the September 30 opener, over 100 recreational anglers attended a pre-season seminar given by lobster hoop trap expert, Jimmie Salazar. Salazar said the bugs ...

Cardiff's trashy neighborhood

“If you challenge her, she will leave trash in your front yard.”

Residents of the Poinsettia Heights neighborhood in Cardiff by the Sea have a trash problem. Often residents will wake up in the morning to find trash strewn on their street. The problem has been going ...

Amtrak won’t stop in Encinitas or South Carlsbad

Agreement with North County Transit District to end October 9

Encinitas and South Carlsbad will be losing Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train service. Both stations receive six daily Amtrak train stops — three northbound and three southbound. The move, effective October 9, ends a four-year “Rail-2-Rail” ...

Encinitas council votes under legal pressure

“It’s with a heavy heart that I support the district process."

The City of Encinitas will probably be switching to district elections for its council seats — not because it’s a good idea for democracy or to better represent the five communities that make up the ...

Del Mar's race season ends with a look forward

The Kardashians visited, horses died, and Breeder's Cup anticipation

As the 78th season of the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club came to a close, I talked with two highly visible track personalities. They took a look back on the season and the future as Del ...

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 ...

Tantalizing chance to fish in Encinitas forbidden zone

From Moonlight to Seaside beach

Recreational anglers, along with a scientist from Scripps Institute of Oceanography at UCSD, got to fish where the rest of us can’t — in the Marine Protected Area of Encinitas — a no-take area for ...

American Vandal mockumentary of Oceanside High doesn't ring a bell

Except that Lukas Gage went to San Dieguito

Former Encinitas resident, Lukas Gage, credits his past as a local surfer with helping him land a leading role in the upcoming Netflix series, American Vandal. The eight-episode show uploads to the online network on ...

Cardiff’s lifeguard tower project is bumping campers

“The last thing they want is to hear a jack hammer all day.”

Since the 1970s, Mira Mesa’s Dave Timms has been camping for a week, once a year at the San Elijo State Beach campground. Recently when he tried to make his usual reservation, he found his ...

Garden State Bagels in Encinitas sees nit-picking by County Health

"We get blamed"

Steve Amster, the owner of Garden State Bagels got his Encinitas restaurant’s health rating dropped from a long-term “A” to a less-than-90% “B” rating. He was cited for what county health inspector, Diego Velasquez, reported ...

Speed limits to be lowered on La Costa Avenue, Quail Gardens Drive

But increased on El Camino Real

Some major streets in Encinitas are scheduled for speed limit changes, mostly downward by five miles per hour, but some will be increased, based on a little-known California law. Last week, although some residents protested ...

Rancho Peñasquitos' Andy Wiess reviving Crown Books

Used books on trial in Encinitas, Horton Plaza, and Chula Vista

A long gone, but once familiar nationwide business has reappeared in Encinitas. Back in the 1980s, a lanky Robert Haft went on TV with the his three-piece suit and heavy New Jersey accent, to tell ...

VG's is not leaving

San Diego North Coast real estate churning pushes the rumor mill

When it opened in 1968, Joe Mettee started working in his dad’s Cardiff-by-the-Sea donut shop when he was 14. VG’s, with its morning customers lining up out the door, has grown to become an icon ...

Dems pass retroactive bill to block recall of state senator Newman

Jerry Brown transfers $100K to help intimidate signature gatherers

San Diego’s AM 600 KOGO’s radio talk show host, Carl DeMaio, appears to have Governor Brown and the Democratic-controlled state legislature nervous. DeMaio’s Reform California campaign, and his attempt to recall State Senator Josh Newman ...

Del Mar's parking fail

Revenue-generating idea may have backfired

Over the winter, the city of Del Mar widened and repaved its northern boundary, the busy Via de La Valle, between Coast Highway and Jimmy Durante Boulevard. They also added a bike lane and a ...

Del Mar Fair opening — here for the piggies

Deviled eggs with roasted salmon, smoked Brie, hummus cucumber dip, Portobello tortas.

The iconic bronze statue of Don Diego, dressed up in cowboy garb, overlooked the main gate of the San Diego County Fair, as hundreds lined up for opening night on June 2. And like the ...

Eastern Sierra trout can go at it again

Breeders set free in Owens River and Mono basin

After six years of stocking non-breeding trout, next spring the state Department of Fish and Wildlife will begin raising and stocking little breeders in the Owens River and Mono Lake basins. Stopped in 2011, lawsuits ...

San Dieguito High honors classmates killed in battle

Twenty names read on Saturday, most by someone who knew them

During the Vietnam War, Del Mar resident 1st Lt. Jimmy Mitchell, a member of the 1st Battalion, 4th Marines, landed at Chu Lai in South Vietnam. On an August 31, 1965 patrol, the Marine from ...

16 acres of coastal bluff above Del Mar's dog beach finally sold

Public allowed behind locked gates to vote on design for housing, landscaping

For the first time in almost 100 years, the public recently got a look at 16 acres of coastal bluff top, probably the largest piece of undeveloped beachfront property in private ownership in San Diego ...

16- and 17-year-olds to get a fishing license break?

New bill gets through Assembly committee

In an effort to increase interest in fishing, 75th District assemblymember Marie Waldron (R – Escondido) has written AB478, which would eliminate fishing licenses for those teen anglers age 16 or 17. Last month her ...

DeMaio faces off against Jerry Brown

Says governor sending thugs to supermarkets — Vons and Ralphs forbid signature gathering

Late last week, San Diego’s AM 600 KOGO talk host, Carl DeMaio, along with John & Ken from L.A.’s KFI AM 640, joined forces for a live broadcast from a Fullerton ARCO AM/PM gas station. ...

Coastal Commission to Encinitas — No!

Bike trail must go east of the tracks

After a 13-hour meeting, the City of Encinitas’ attempt to increase bike and pedestrian safety and mobility along the Highway 101 corridor was dealt a big blow. Despite unanimous city council support for a proposed ...

Oceanside McDonald's uncovers electrical outlets

“We realized people need to do work occasionally.”

The Oceanside McDonald’s at 3794 Plaza Drive just went through a 76-day complete remodel. The old play structure was completely removed; a new interior, signage, and outside façade were added, along with redesigned drive-thru lanes. ...

Two more nonstop flights to Europe from San Diego

Condor to Frankfurt starting May 8, Edelweiss to Zurich starting June 9

As most major U.S. airlines are making money for the first time in decades, and the U.S. dollar's strength is adding value overseas to Americans, two foreign carriers are welcoming San Diegans aboard. Starting May ...

A wider road from Bonsall to I-15

Beneficiaries: new Palomar campus, five new neighborhoods, four casinos

Caltrans has quietly opened up the four finished lanes of the long awaited, and final leg, of the Highway 76 widening project. The last 4.3-mile stretch from Mission Road in Bonsall, to I-15, completes the ...

Eastern Sierra opening day: no snowstorm, few fish

Hundreds of San Diegans fish Convict, Lundy, Silver, and Crowley Lakes. Mammoth, Tioga Pass iced over.

For the first time in four years, anglers attending Merry Fishmas – opening day of trout season in the Eastern Sierra were not greeted with an early spring snowstorm. But while by the afternoon of ...

Finally for Calif. - a 12-month from-date-purchase fishing license

Berryhill bill get unanimous nod from state senate committee

Many San Diego anglers are rejoicing that California appears to finally be moving towards a 12-month from-date-purchase fishing license. Senate Bill 187, written by Sen. Tom Berryhill (R-Twain Harte) unanimously passed the senate’s Natural Resources ...

Chargers now on KFI AM 640

Spanos and Rivers gave hints.

Los Angeles’ KFI AM 640 radio announced on April 26, it will be the flagship radio home of the Los Angeles Chargers. The 50,000-watt powerhouse station can be heard throughout San Diego County. The afternoon ...

Decision on sportfishing landing at Oceanside Harbor postponed

Sea Center and Helgren's won't occupy same space.

After stalling for almost eight months, on April 19, the Oceanside city council has kicked the can down the road for another six months regarding which firm will operate the sportfishing landing at Oceanside Harbor. ...

DeMaio enlists KFI’s John and Ken in recall of Josh Newman

KOGO’s talk jock hopes to use Gazelle Plan against gas tax increase

Upset over the legislature’s imposed 12 cents per gallon gas tax (20 cents for diesel) passed on April 5, Carl DeMaio, on his April 10 talk show on AM 600 KOGO, announced his “Gazelle Plan” ...

Solana Beach Antique Warehouse ceding ground to Williams Sonoma's West Elm

Until 1977 it was Tri-City Roller Rink

With the recent closure of Solana Beach’s Antique Warehouse, in the Cedros Design District, the 35-year old business brings up memories of years gone by. Not necessarily from only the customers and renters of the ...

Oceanside’s fountain, turned back on, comes into view

City eyes Camp Pendleton front gate for water source

A five-foot high, decorative wrought iron fence erected around the Oceanside Civic Center’s large plaza’s fountains has finally come down. The 400-foot of temporary blue fence was first erected in April of 2015 to help ...

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