From the Cover

The ultimate chili challenge

By Ken Williams | Editor

The oh-so-popular SoNo Fest and Chili Cook-Off has rapidly morphed into a spicy smackdown for local chefs seeking big-time bragging rights.

Organizers expect up to 20,000 people will turn out for the seventh annual chili fest from 11 a.m.–5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 4, at the intersection of 32nd and Thorn streets.

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Artistic flair

Community-inspired murals to enliven Barons Market décor

By Lucia Viti

Barons Market is gearing up to open its North Park store by Thanksgiving, and will be treating shoppers to organic, natural and specialty food along with the pride of local artwork.

Amy Baca Lopez of North Park is one of five local artists chosen by Barons to create custom murals in the grocery store and parking garage. Baca Lopez is showcasing a color fest painted on a four-sided, 9-foot-wide, 20-foot-high column towering inside the store.

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Chris Ward

Posted: October 21st, 2016 | Feature, From the Cover, Top Story | 1 Comment

District 3 councilmember-elect reflects on homelessness and affordable housing

Ken Williams | Editor

(Editor’s note: First of a two-part series)

Councilmember-elect Chris Ward knows he has some really big shoes to fill in District 3, following in the footsteps of Todd Gloria, Toni G. Atkins and Christine Kehoe. But he is also confident that his public service as chief of staff to state Sen. Marty Block has prepared him well for the challenging task of helping to lead America’s eighth-largest city in its ambitious quest to become a world-class destination.

Ward won an outright victory in the June 7 primary against fellow Democrat Anthony Bernal and a third candidate who barely campaigned. As a result of his landslide win, Ward does not have to face a runoff on Election Day, Nov. 8, and he will be sworn into office on Dec. 12 when the new City Council takes over.

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When San Diego inspires artists

By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Sarah Stieber paints life in San Diego as she sees it. She sees a colorful brilliance at a bus stop in North Park that others might miss, were it not for her painting, “Life Is Whatever.”

“I call my painting style ‘electric realism,’” Stieber said. “I think I invented that term to explain my vibrant use of color and the emotional energy in my paintings. Growing up in Southern California, there’s a lot of vibrant social energy here. There’s a sort of sun-soaked plasticy feel to a lot of social encounters — it’s so Hollywood. So I really wanted to heighten people’s emotional experiences.”

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A South Park tradition

Posted: June 17th, 2016 | Feature, From the Cover, Top Story | No Comments

Community celebrates with Old House Fair, walking tours

By Margie M. Palmer

South Park’s annual Old House Fair may be best known for its Historical Home Tour, but organizers want people to know that this is just one feature of the family-friendly event.

“We’re very excited about this year. Not only will the street fair be bigger and better than ever before, we’ve also added a lot of new elements,” said Marsha Smelkinson, acting executive director of the South Park Business Group, the sponsor. “We will also have more exhibitors and vendors than ever before.”

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