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Stories by Mike Madriaga

Baby clams ashore on Silver Strand cause excitement, discussion

Don't eat them

"[There were] thousands of clams under the shallow surf just below the sand," said Shawn, "never have I seen something like this on our beaches." Shawn, from Chula Vista has been fishing for 20 years. ...

Sand One bursts into San Diego and gets crowd to North Park dental office

“Badass muralist with a unique doll style,”

“[Do] you guys know the Reader?” Sand One asked. The crowd then cheered. One girl from her entourage said “that’s the one I was telling you about.” On July 1, Sand One, an East Los ...

At last, an easy way to get to Mission Valley

Safer for a bike than Fairmount Ave. or Texas St.

“The bikeway is almost done” said Miguel, as he walked out by the freeway exit. On June 29, Miguel walked up the State Route 15 Commuter Bikeway (northbound) towards Adams Avenue. “The pavement, walls and ...

Canyon fires in mid-city San Diego started by homeless

Home dwellers at rim take things into their own hands

“I heard a man yell ‘Fire!'” said Sandra Brooks. “Fires are not allowed in the canyon.” Brooks, like many of her surrounding neighbors, is concerned for the safety of their homes that sit above Manzanita ...

Fire prevention goats draw crowds in Encanto

Selfie takers distract animals from steep hillside work

“I told him not to touch the fence,” said Kimberly Keo, “you will get shocked.” Keo was referring to the electric fence that separated the parents and kids from the many goats grazing on an ...

Oakland artist chosen to decorate San Diego airport

Sentiments from the Chargers’ and Raiders’ fan-beef?

“An Oakland-based artist was commissioned to create a massive piece for the San Diego International Airport,” Joshua Alcala said, “shouldn’t you give it to San Diego artists?” On June 16 and 17, The Aja Project ...

Oh, the stories these walls have heard

Ohio Street probation department shut, ex-perps shunted downtown

“If they don’t check in, they might have to go back in [jail],” Nick said. On June 15, while walking his dog Bentley, Nick saw a couple of guys panicking in front of the San ...

Tijuana-Ensenada toll road near Salsipuedes under repair

Father's Day gringos react

“It was a lot of traffic [and] I got stuck [for] like two hours there,” said Luis A. Corona, a 24-year-old college student from Ensenada. He was referring to the traffic that stopped on the ...

Baja governor opens bidding on Ensenada airport

In Ojos Negros — 40 miles east of port town

“[Ensenada] has potential to be well known on a global level, but it’s not easily accessed,” said Roberto De La Peña, “the airport would attract more people and put Ensenada on the map.” On June ...

Succulent thief in North Park and University Heights

“Who steals plants?”

Yesterday, a woman parked her white Prius right there [in front of my house],” said Steve from University Heights, “then started to cut my succulents (with a pruner), and left. That’s stealing!” Steve, 67, is ...

What is someone's junk is now everyone's junk

Alley-pickers are pickier in North Park and Normal Heights

In the last day (June 6), Mike G. has seen a desk and three mattresses dumped in plain sight around his Normal Heights’ streets. “….and all sorts of cabinets, bookcases, etc. will appear on the ...

Baja's Highway 1 tested in 160 mph race

Honda, Ford Mustang, Studebaker crap out before Cabo

“I always thought that it would be a wonderful road to race on,” said Richard Bailey from Washington, “I mean [look at] the backdrop right now — we are sitting on the highways at [Bahia] ...

Mixed feelings on campers at Shadow Hill Park

Sheriffs rip up $100 tent in Santee

“Just an FYI … there was a homeless camp in the drainage ditch (by the bridge) at Shadow Hill Park, they were evicted about a week ago,” posted a Santee resident on the Nextdoor app ...

"Let's have them do it in La Jolla next year...."

Rock 'n' Roll Marathon nay-sayers

“I didn’t miss church [because] I’m the choir director – so it’s essential that I get there,” said Nina Gilbert. Gilbert was one of the prepared ones for the detours and roadblocks brought about by ...

No money allowed at food swaps

Surfeit of oranges, lemons, and eggs in Spring Valley and North Park right now

“The only rule of the [food] swap is that there is no exchange of money,” said Marianne West. On Saturday (May 27), she met with about forty other San Diegans at the Spring Valley East ...

Bees swarm Kensington

"Seek shelter immediately inside a car or building."

“[I] drove right through the [bee] swarm with the windows rolled down,” said Mike Glosson, from Normal Heights.” Glosson, 54, who is a systems analyst, estimated that there was a “swarm of thousands of bees” ...

Low planes over North Park start buzz

Flashes of 1978 PSA accident

“I didn’t see the plane,” said Jean, “but I heard it and noted how incredibly low it was.” Jean, 61, is a yoga instructor from the Montclair area of North Park (by Commonwealth Avenue and ...

Female City College student punches attacker. He runs away.

There's an app for that

“I would’ve went for his nuts instead,” said Raquel Calderon regarding her schoolmate “that got rushed by some dude.” On May 22, the San Diego Community College School District sent out a mass email regarding ...

Reader writer backup dancer for Vanilla Ice at Waterfront Park

The emoticons and selfies

“Last Nite! #SquadGoals #TacoFest2017 #VanillaIce” were a part of HipHopTrooper‘s descriptors which garnered him 1,231 likes on Instagram. The photo was of him in red Star Wars-esque gear, and his cosplaying-squad dressed as two ninja ...

San Diego graffiti meet at 50th and Market — a cease to all beefs

Techies spreading the mural and tags on social media

“I witnessed a few guys make amends with each other,” said Spek One, 44, “as well as myself with one of the guys that I actually got into a fist-fight [with] back in the day.” ...

Slurry helps skateboarders on 37th and 38th streets

“These kids, they need to be careful.”

Last Thursday (May 18), Jonathan Santoyo power-slid his skateboard with much more finesse — “thanks to the city of San Diego.” “It was harder for sure before they paved this street,” he said. Santoyo is ...

Neighbors take sides in Normal Heights dog dispute

How soon does owner need to respond?

“[Regarding] the neighbor who threw dog poop on another neighbor’s windshield for not cleaning up after their dog,” said Melissa Popovich, “I can understand why a person would get frustrated enough about it.” Popovich, 43, ...

University Ave. Radio Shack closing brings out comments

Local electronics users tell what went wrong

“Some of their sales reps and their corporate buyers had a lack of knowledge,” said Bob Mulz, regarding the soon to be closings of the RadioShack stores in his Cherokee Point/City Heights neighborhood. Mulz, 72, ...

What about people who sleep in their cars?

They can park at New Life Church and Jewish Family Services

“Hey guys why do you need like 12 squad cars,” asked Konrad Czerwinski to the police officers that blocked off his auto shop. At approximately 8:00 a.m., on May 5, Czerwinski, the owner of Adams ...

City Heights feral cat rescuer and birth control agent

50 people showed interest in Anne Joseph's May 17 session of cat-trapping.

“Being that it’s springtime in San Diego, it didn’t take long to figure out that it’s [cat] mating season,” said Anne Joseph, “thus the howling and the roaming behaviors.” Joseph, a yoga personal trainer, recently ...

San Diego quinceañeras vendors at Del Mar Marriott worried

Hispanic glitz slow-down — Trump blamed

“This year we expect a slow quinceañera season, it’s going to be tough,” said Marco Salcedo from Chula Vista. Salcedo said that there were about 300 visitors at his Quinceañeras Magazine Expo event on Sunday ...

The chola look comes out at Chicano Park Day

The pompadour, the feathered look, the copete in photos at Mesheeka on Logan Ave.

“I seen about 15 to 20 [cholas] in the park that day,” said Jesse Amaro, after he posted a photo of four girls wearing men-fitted khaki pants walk past him, “you don’t see the chola ...

A crow sanctuary in North Park

After her neighbor killed five of them, she befriended Gomez

“So her macho boyfriend took it upon himself to run out, get a gun of some kind,” said Kay Marsik, “and then he bragged to me that he had killed five of them [crows].” Since ...

6000 lumpias a day, 12,000 if Pacquiao fights

One every five seconds on 38th St. in Cherokee Point

Fredcel is located in the oddest place for a Filipino restaurant — in Cherokee Point, at 3876 38th St., behind the Family Dollar store. “Pare (dude in tagalog), we made [and sold] about 6,000 lumpias ...

San Diego Mopar group swarms The Fate of the Furious at the South Bay Triple Drive-In

And confronts San Diego Audi owners, who got there two hours earlier.

“The word ‘Mopar’ to many might mean ‘motor parts’ which is what it really stands for,” said Carlos Diaz, “but for me Mopar means more than that … it means a well-built muscle machine built ...

Sidewalk danger from South San Diego to Normal Heights

New metal base for signs part of the problem

“I’ve tripped over that metal piece so many times [that] I stopped counting,” said Sharon, as she walked back to her car that was parked on C Street under the Interstate 5 overpass. “I’ve only ...

Geezer RVs rally at Mission Bay's Campland

Pismo South says old camper trailers used to suffer discrimination

On April 1, approximately 120 vintage camper trailers and recreational vehicles parked inside Campland on the Bay. This was the 4th Annual Pismo South, a camper trailer rally which originated up in the central coast. ...

Goodguys omits L-word at Del Mar car show

Rods, customs, classics, muscle cars and trucks - but not lowriders

“Man I think that lowriders should have their own category here,” said Steve Polen, “they got restomod, 100% original, and others – but not lowrider.” On the first weekend of the month, the Del Mar ...

Visitors bend rules at Carlsbad's Flower Fields

Enforcement staff wearing dark glasses doubled

“This day (April 8) that you are here,” said Fred Clarke, “is the best absolute day of color right now.” Clarke is the general manager of The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch. “The color is ...

Hit and run crash into Cal Uniforms on Park Blvd.

Sales manager stays up all night to guard uniform stock

“Everybody thought it was us, huh,” said L. Dee Kiser, the owner of Millard’s Fur Service. Kiser referred to the high-speed pursuit that ended with a white Honda Civic crashing into her next door neighbor, ...

Drone flies low over Kensington and Channel 39 comes knocking

Neighbors on Nextdoor warn that downing a drone is a federal offense

“Tonight (April 5) I had a man [reporter] … actually come to my door from KNSD regarding my (drone flyover) comments on Nextdoor,” said Suzanne from Kensington, “completely uninvited and unannounced, and while he was ...

Dog search south of City Heights by social media

From Hollywood Park to Azalea Park canyon

She was last seen on Sumac Drive and Laurel Street – next to Hollywood Park. She weighs about 12 lbs., and is black and brown in color and should be wearing a purple collar with ...

The challenge of Highway 79 between I-8 and Julian

The uneven section on the side of the road might pull your car

“The Caltrans guy said that they were fixing the edges of the freeway where the pavement ended on each side (by the shoulders).”

Lightsaber fighters spar at Balboa Park’s fountain — and cast wary eye on Disney

“I’ll strike a deal with them.”

“I feel that if I ask Lucasfilm or Walt Disney [Company] for permission (to use the lightsaber word in the company name),” said Nick Murico, “that might be my Achilles heel.” When the sun set ...

Kensington bicyclist ticketed for not stopping at Meade and 39th

No Idaho stops in Calif. yet

“The policeman told me, ‘You are (riding) a bike and need to follow the rules of the road, and you did not stop at this four-way,'” said Anna Grace Carter. She received a ticket that ...

Parking meters with eyes in Hillcrest

Do sensors signal the end of the free or discounted spot?

“I think it’s weird and foreign-looking,” said LeeAnn Donan. Donan, 49, from Mission Hills, was referring to the two grayish boxes that appeared to have cameras inside of them mounted on the pole underneath the ...

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