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Uptown Briefs Feb. 1

San Diego Museum Council presents Museum Month

Now in its 24th year, the San Diego Museum brings half-off admission to 42 San Diego-area museums for February’s Museum Month. The promotion is presented by Macy’s, where participants must pick up a free Museum Month Pass to receive the discounts the entire month. “Museum Month will serve as an ideal platform for culture-seekers to discover new inspirations in 2013,” Jessica Crawford, council board president, said in a release. Museum Month was created in 1989 to promote awareness of area museums and cultural sites. Last year, over 35,000 visitors used the special passes. Participating museums, which are all listed on the pass, include the Japanese Friendship Garden, Marston House & Gardens, Museum of Photographic Arts, Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, San Diego Botanic Garden, San Diego Museum of Art, Timken Museum of Art, Whaley House Museum and Women’s Museum of California.

 

Being Alive social serves as much-needed fundraiser

Being Alive San Diego is hosting a fundraiser called “A Sweet Affair: A Dessert & Wine Social” on Friday, Feb. 8 at the Mezzanine Art Gallery, 2525 University Ave in North Park. Ten bakeries will provide desserts throughout the evening, with opportunities for attendees to vote on “best dessert of the evening.” Participating restaurants include Babycakes, San Diego Desserts, Opera Desserts, Vons, Heaven Sent Desserts, Swoon Dessert Bar, Triple Cream Bakery, Nunzi’s Café, Nothing Bundt Cakes and City Deli. The Caliph and Starbucks will be providing drinks. Organizers are anticipating more as the event approaches. Being Alive was founded in 1989 by volunteer HIV-positive individuals looking to fill the void in support services for the HIV/AIDS community. Now one of the longest, continually operating support organizations, the nonprofit serves more than 8,000 San Diegans. The event will be from 7 – 9 p.m., and the cost is $25 in advance and $35 at the door. For presale tickets call 619-291-1400.

 

Britany Statt named Bicycle Coalition Membership Coordinator

The San Diego County Bicycle Coalition announced Britany Statt as the organization’s new membership development coordinator, in an announcement released Jan. 17. The position’s responsibilities include “growing and strengthening the Coalition’s fund development” and membership. “I’m thrilled to bring Britany on board to help with the growth we saw last year and continued momentum we’ll see in 2013,” said Executive Director Andy Hanshaw in the release. “Opportunities are flourishing to make San Diego a better place for bikes and bicyclists. She’s bringing an extensive background and passion to grab hold of as many as possible.” Statt’s nonprofit experience includes time as a development and marketing coordinator for the United Food Bank in Arizona, and received national certification in nonprofit management and leadership from the Non-Profit Leadership Alliance. The Bicycle Coalition is a nonprofit advocating for and protecting the rights of bicyclists.

 

‘Pygmalion’ director new associate artist

The Old Globe Artistic Director Barry Edelstein announced Nicholas Martin as the newest associate artist of the theater company. Martin, who is directing the Globe’s current production of “Pygmalion,” is the 56th artist to receive the honor. “I, along with the entire Globe community, are truly honored to express our gratitude to the multi-talented Nicholas Martin for his contributions to The Old Globe,” Edelstein said in the announcement. “Nicky is one of our country’s finest stage directors. … His generous wit and warmth bring out the best from the artists in his charge, and he is an enthusiastic mentor to the next generation of theater makers. We adore him, and we look forward to welcoming him back to the Globe again and again.” Recipient of the Norton Award for Sustained Achievement, Martin directed  “Present Laughter,” “Butley,” “Match,” “Hedda Gabler, “The Rehearsal” and “You Never Can Tell” on Broadway, as well as numerous regional and off-Broadway productions. He served as artistic director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival and Huntington Theatre Company.

 

SOHO calls for resource directory recommendations

Save Our Heritage Organisation (SOHO) is “revising, updating and republishing” their Old House Resource Directory, and is looking to the community for input and recommendations on the listings. The listings have not been updated for six years, and SOHO representatives said they do not plan to update again for another five years. Providers of services for old home owners who wish to be listed are asked to send their business name, phone number, website, contractor license and references of work to sohosandiego@aol.com, with the subject “Resource.” Additionally, homeowners, contractors and architects who would like to refer a similar company are asked to contact them as well. Categories include, but are not limited to, archeology, bathrooms and kitchens, contractors and construction, education, landscape and garden, painters, preservation architects, publications, and tile.

 

Hillcrest Doghouse Bar and Grill has full February schedule

Marc Bragg, co-owner of Sally and Henry’s Doghouse Bar and Grill, announced a full offering of pet-friendly events in February, including a Dog TV-sponsored Chihuahua rescue event on Thursday, Feb. 7. “We embrace Dog TV’s mission in our goal to provide a relaxing and stimulating venue for dog and puppies, as well as to enhance adoption opportunities,” Bragg said in a release. Those interested in adopting a Chihuahua, as well as all dog lovers, can visit the restaurant at 3515 Fifth Ave. on Feb. 7 between 6 and 8 p.m. Other February events planned at the establishment include canine education from 6 – 8 p.m. Mondays, Karma dog training from 2 – 4 p.m. Saturdays, speed dating with your pet at 7 p.m. on Feb. 14 and dog yoga from 10 – 11 a.m. weekly, beginning Feb. 23. Images by Kara will be hosting a photo shoot for attendees and their pets on Feb. 9 from 2 – 7 p.m. Also in the announcement, Canine Education Founder Fernando Steffey said, “What I love about Sally and Henry’s is the private dog park, which promotes enhanced socialization among dogs.”

 

DA office releases podcast series to increase public safety

The office of San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis has started to release a series of short podcast recordings highlighting topics that appear in their Truancy Court, Prisoner Realignment and Domestic Violence High Risk Assessment teams. The purpose of the podcasts is to educate the public on the work the DA’s office does on a daily basis related to public safety and their mission. “Our office is made up of an extremely talented team of some 1,000 employees,” Dumanis said in the announcement. “The public may not realize the variety of issues we deal with and myriad of initiatives that have been put in place the past several years. With the click of the mouse, the public can hear about some of what we do.” Three, five-minute podcasts were uploaded in January, and listeners can listen to them at sandiegoda.com under the “Newsroom & Videos” tab.

 

Davis re-introduces bill to end absentee ballot restrictions

District 53rd District Rep. Susan Davis, representing much of Uptown, reintroduced a federal bill that would end restrictions many states impose on absentee ballot voters. Called the Universal Right to Vote by Mail Act, the bill would prohibit states from limiting absentee voting to only certain voters. California is one of a handful of states that offer “no-excuse absentee voting,” which does not include such restrictions. “There’s really no excuse for the government to demand the private details of a person’s life just so they can vote,” Davis said in a released statement. “Voters should not have to put their life on display or jump through hoops just to participate in one of the most hallowed acts of a democracy – voting. And no one should be denied the chance to vote because they don’t have the proper excuse.” Davis called the bill a matter of “privacy” and “fairness,” calling on Congress to level the voting rights across each state. Previously, the bill has twice passed the House Administration Committee and Davis said she would continue to move it through Congress.

 

Talmadge Junior Theatre student cast in new production

Mark Barahura of Talmadge is one of 10 San Diego Junior Theatre students cast in their latest production, “The Borrowers.” Directed by Michael Schwartz, the production will run Feb. 8 – 17 at Roosevelt Middle School, located at 3366 Park Blvd. Committed to encouraging the creative development of San Diego youth through the arts, the Junior Theatre company serves students of all abilities from 3 to 18 years old. “The Borrowers” is being presented through a special arrangement with The deFaria Company and Roosevelt Middle School International Baccalaureate Magnet. Tickets for the shows, which run Fridays at 7 p.m. and weekends at 2 p.m., start at $12 and can be purchased by calling 619-239-8355 or visiting juniortheatre.com.

 

CLEAN WATER ACTION CALIFORNIA RECOGNIZES TONI ATKINS

Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins was honored as a Clean Water Champion by Clean Water Action California. “Majority Leader Atkins has shown leadership on issues our members care about,” said Director Miriam Gordon in a press release. “We commend our Clean Water Champions for recognizing that protecting the environment moves California not only toward a more sustainable environment, but also toward greater economic sustainability.” Atkins was one of 13 legislators to receive an “A” on the organization’s scorecard, which tallied votes on 16 bills during the 2011-12 legislative session related to water, environmental justice and pollution prevention, among others. “I am very proud of having been recognized for my commitment to our environment with this award,” Atkins said in the release. “Protecting the water we drink and swim in, the air we breathe, and the health and diversity of our environment are critical to the outstanding way of life we enjoy here in California.”

 

Empire House celebrating two years in Hillcrest location

Empire House urban palate owners Larry Malone and Susie Baggs are celebrating their restaurant’s two-year anniversary by offering five days of specials on food and drinks. Located at 127 University Ave., the restaurant and bar’s official opening day was Feb. 4, 2001, and Malone and Baggs have created a “countdown” flier leading up to the big day. On Thursday, Jan. 31, the restaurant offered $5 drink and food specials; on Friday, Feb. 1 they will offer $4 specials, followed by $3 specials on Saturday, Feb. 2 and $2 specials on Sunday, Feb. 3. On their official anniversary, all five days of specials will apply and Malone and Baggs will offer the first drink free to patrons who make a donation to Washington Elementary.

 

Mama’s Kitchen seeking food drive hosts for Pantry service

In an effort to collect over 100 barrels of food for Mama’s Pantry, a service of Mama’s Kitchen, the nonprofit is seeking the public’s help throughout February by asking interested individuals and businesses to host a food drive. Mama’s Kitchen staff and volunteers will drop off an empty barrel to your location with a wish list of the non-perishable food items that are needed for their services. The Pantry provides a nutritional food at no cost to men, women and children in San Diego County affected by HIV or AIDS.  “Hunger is a year-round issue and especially critical during the winter months,” Executive Director Alberto Cortés said in a release. “We look to the generosity of our community to collect much-needed food for San Diegans in need.” Once a month, Pantry clients can visit the location to select items including cereal, pasta and canned goods to supplement their nutritional intake and maintain health. “We’d like to involve local businesses, school and places of worship in sponsoring one or more of our barrels,” Cortés said. “These donations will help us ensure that we can continue our mission of providing the basic necessity of life – nutritious food.” Those interested are asked to contact Bill Patten at bill@mamaskitchen.org.

 

ATKINS INTRODUCES AB 154, EXPANDING SAFE ACCESS TO ABORTION

Introduced Jan. 22 by Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins, AB 154 would broaden the types of health professionals permitted to provide abortion services in the first trimester of pregnancy. Responding to a shortage of health care professionals providing this procedure, a press release stated, the bill includes nurse practitioners, nurse midwives and physicians’ assistants. “As a former health care administrator in women’s clinics, I know from first-hand experience that safe and ready access to abortion procedures makes all the difference in the world in women’s lives,” Atkins said in the release. Barriers to safe care in rural areas in particular have been created by a lack of professionals who are able to perform abortions, and expanding this number will reduce the pressure on the health care system, resulting in “improved heath and well-being for women” and families, the release stated. “I am pleased to introduce legislation that will increase the number of trained professionals who are permitted to perform early abortions and I look forward to discussing the bill with my colleagues as the bill moves through the legislative process.” AB 154 is sponsored by the California Women’s Health Alliance.

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