More Commercial Developments in the Works

An article published today in the San Diego Daily Transcript describes Menifee as offering "peaceful living, quality schools and the comforts of small-town living combined with the convenience of growing commercial services".

It goes on to describe some new commercial developments in the works...

Currently, Menifee-Sun City area is courting several major developers, including Rancon, a leader in the real estate industry. Recent commercial developments completed or under construction include: The Salt Creek Plaza, a new Albertson's center, the Automotive Plaza Center, La Masters Jewelry and the Menifee Valley Athletic Club.

"The Menifee Valley Athletic Club is a stunning, state-of-the-art facility that looks like it could be located on Rodeo Drive. It's absolutely beautiful," said Ferrulli. The first of its kind, the athletic club is the brainchild of local resident John Walker.

"Another local venture is a Morton's type steakhouse, which will hopefully break ground in the next 60 days," said Ferrulli. "It will be owned and operated by the owner of Boston Billy's, known to everyone as Abe."

Menifee Man Commits Suicide

The Southwest Station of the Riverside County Sheriff released the following press release concerning a Menifee resident that committed suicide this morning...

Details: On Thursday, August 31, 2006, at about 3:19 am, officers from the Temecula Police Department observed a white pick-up driving in the area of Rancho California and Meadows Parkway. The officers attempted to conduct a traffic stop for a vehicle code violation.

The truck failed to yield and a pursuit ensued. At about 3:33 am, the driver drove to a residence on the 33000 block of Sweetwater Canyon in the unincorporated area of the County of Riverside known as Menifee. The driver exited the vehicle and entered the residence. Arriving officers and deputies heard a gunshot coming from the house and called for additional deputies.

The Riverside County Sheriff's Department Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB) and the Riverside County Sheriff's Department Hostage Negotiation Team (HNT) were called to the location to assist. The deputies attempted to communicate with the subject inside of the residence using a bullhorn and by telephone.

At about 9:00 am, SEB team members made entry into the house and located the subject deceased. The Temecula Police Department investigators arrived and assisted the investigation. The name of the individual will not be released until the next of kin is notified.

Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to call the Southwest Station at 951-696-3000.

Cityhood for Menifee Valley

The Menifee Valley Incorporation Committee (MVIC) has recently been reorganized with several new members. The incorporation process requires the accumulation of signatures equating to 25% of the registered voters. This has been accomplished and the next task is developing a plan that will complete a successful fiscal analysis, complete certain studies and maps and get cityhood on the ballot. The committee is in need of more interested people who can attend meetings, contribute positive ideas and take on assignments in support of our future city.

Cityhood means many things to different people but I feel that the two keys reasons for becoming a city are home rule and our taxes stay here to help us grow. Right now we are a "ward" of the County and as such have people in Riverside making decisions for us. Supervisor Jeff Stone is very supportive of this effort and will continue to have our best interests in mind. However we need people who live here, children go to school here, attend church here to make the daily decisions for our community.

You may have heard about Assembly Bill 1602 that would provide our new community with additional tax income in the early years of our city. This provision is not new but was deleted in the recent State financial upheavel. That bill has passed both the Assembly and the Senate and is awaiting the Govenor's signature. This will give us additional Vehicle License Fee (VLF) for the first five years.

I invite you to the regularly scheduled MVIC meetings. We meet the first and third Wednesday in the Rural Community Center on Haun Road at 7:00pm. Come join this group of concerned citizens as they push toward cityhood.

Christmas In Menifee - Vendors Wanted

Vendors are needed for the Christmas in Menifee event held at San Jacinto college November 18, 2006, from 7:00am to 3:00pm.

Christmas in Menifee is being planned to help create "branding" for the entire Menifee Valley. It's meant to be a showcase of Menifee & Sun City area businesses, organizations, and clubs for the purpose of introducing the entire Menifee Valley to the Southwest California region. Cost of one vendor space is priced at $65.00.

The event will also take place in tandem with the swap meet and the San Jacinto College's scholarship awards ceremony. A large crowd of attendees is expected.

Christmas in Menifee is not a fundraising event, rather a stage for Menifee Valley businesses and organizations to showcase themselves to the public. Money raised from the event goes towards paying for the cost of the facilities.

For more information, or to reserve a vendor space, please contact the Menifee Sun City Chamber of Commerce at (951) 723-8511.

New Town-Home Communities Underway in Menifee

Cheryl Ferrulli, CEO of the Menifee Sun City Chamber of Commerce, wrote the following article regarding some new communities under way in Menifee...

Affording a home is tough, especially when it's your first purchase. The median home price in Riverside County is $422,000, up $9,000 from the previous quarter, according to DataQuick real estate tracking system. Fortunately, builders are bringing new types of housing that will help keep the American Dream within reach.

Brenson Communities is planning to build two luxury town-home communities in Menifee. Christensen Ranch is planned along Antelope Road, just north of the golf driving range, and The Bridge At Menifee is slated for Haun Road, just west of I-215. Each town-home community will have a pool, sports courts, playgrounds, spas and community centers.

However, there are a few features that make these two neighborhoods unique. Most the town-homes at Christensen Ranch and The Bridge at Menifee will have backywards and their own garages. The two communities are being designed for the working professionals, families that are looking to make their first purchase, and seniors who want to downsize into a town-home but still want a small backyard for gardening.

Each neighborhood will have a homeowners association to maintain the landscaped grounds, community areas and ample open space. Units are expected to range from 1,100 sq. ft to 2,180 sq. ft, with 2-4 bedrooms.

The 30-acre Christensen Ranch and the 17-acre The Bridge at Menifee are expected to generate more than $3 million in fees to improve local roads and about $2 million for local schools. Brenson Communities - a family owned, award willing development company based in San Diego - will also install traffic signals, improve the flood control system and widen the roads around the two communities.

For more information about the two communities, please call the Christensen Ranch hotline toll free at 800-995-6867 or The Bridge at Menifee hotline toll free at 800-896-6308.

-- Cheryl L. Ferrulli
To contact Cheryl, or the Chamber of Commerce, visit their website:

Wheatfield Park Needs More Park Benches

Whanda Madrid, a Menifee 24/7 readers, asked me to publish her opinion on needing more park benches at Wheatfield Park...

I was wondering who we would need to contact to get park benches installed at Wheatfield Park. I have taken my kids their numerous times but theirs no place for the adults to sit and watch their kids. Unless we sit on a swing, slide or on a step near the woodchips. I see lots of parents doing this and it’s very uncomfortable. We also need a running water fountain and more shade for the adults and kids. I’m not sure who designed the concept of Wheatfield Park but parents need to have somewhere to put their things down so they can enjoy watching their kids play.

In addition, I have noticed a lot of graffiti on the play set out there and my eight year old is old enough to read these comments. Some of the comments are very foul... So who keeps these parks in accordance?

Whanda Madrid, BSHA
This is just a matter of attending a Menifee MAC meeting, and voicing your opinion. You can also contact Supervisor Stone's Menifee field office, and talk to his assistants there.

In every budget year, there is a fixed amount of money for the County to spend. A lot of it goes to law enforcement, the judicial system, penions of retired employees, libraries, animal shelters, etc. Upgrading park facilities is probably furthest down the list of priorities, AND, Riverside County is a pretty big county, stretching all the way out to the Arizona border.

The Home Owners Association there ought to be able to help out. Perhaps this can be discussed at your next HOA meeting.

Also check out La Ladera Park, at the west side of town. Lots of benches, tables, and shade there.

More Crossing Guards Wanted on Menifee Road

Whanda Madrid, a Menifee 24/7 reader, submitted the following e-mail to me regarding how to get more crossing guards on Menifee Rd...

I wanted to know what I can or the community can do to get more crossing guards or crossing walks. I live in the Shadow Ridge Community across from Abbey Lane and we need a crossing guard on Menifee Rd and 1st Star Court and Menifee Rd. and Holland. The two new Shadow Ridge developments have increased the ratio of kids in Menifee. A lot of the kids in that community need to cross the street from the left side to the right towards Wheatfield Park. The traffic on Menifee Rd is horrible and cars are speeding and rushing to get their kids to school in the morning.

As a result, I see kids waiting and waiting to cross so they can walk or ride their bike to school. Especially, at the stop sign on Holland and Menifee Rd, people stop real quickly and keep going without letting the kids cross. This is so dangerous and someone's kid is going to get HIT. People really need to slow down, get off their cell phones, and let the kids pass. It's really ridiculous...

I spoke with Mrs. Hanke the principle at Callie Kirkpatrick Elementary about getting more crossing guards. She stated that it's difficult because Menifee is not a city and it took her several years to get a 2nd crossing guard near the school. She stated that contacting Jeff Stone would be the way to go. I was wondering if anybody else had any information or contacts to get this passed, immediately.

I hoping we as a community can work together to get at least two more crossing guards and a cross walk sooner than later. Menifee is a rapidly growing community with lots of precious kids wondering around and we need to step up to the plate and protect our kids. I have two boys ages 5 and 8 and I'm too scared to let them walk or ride their bike to school because of this hazard.

Whanda Madrid, BSHA
Ultimately, it's the parents responsibility of getting their kids to school safely and on time. If you're frightened for your kids safety, don't wait for the County to do something.

As for getting more crossing guards, it'll probably have to be a team of volunteers. But someone has to be willing to organize this team. I'm sure the County and the school district would love nothing more than to have folks in the community willing to volunteer themselves. The question is "who" wants to organize this, and get this sanctioned by the County or school district.

The State of California has the "Adopt a Highway" program, where businesses can adopt a stretch of highway, and clean up the litter. In return, they get a sign posted on the highway with their name and logo on it. Why not also have, "Adopt a Corner", where businesses can designate an employee to act as a crossing guard, and in exchange also get their name and logo posted on a sign.

There is supposedly another Menifee MAC meeting coming up, but I don't have the specifics on the date yet. This is Menifee's official means of talking to Supervisor Stone. You should bring it up at the meeting.

Stone also has a Menifee field office, and you can contact his assistants there.

If anyone would like to comment, please click on "Post a Comment" below.

Introduction / Observation

I am Mac, the newest staff writer on the ever evolving Menifee 24-7 site.

A big thanks to Steve for giving me a chance to share a few words with you all.
Introductions are great and I am really glad to meet you but you know what? I came here to say a few things so lets move on to that.

Menifee is a great place. Not a bad area at all, in fact it is probably a hundred times better then a lot of other places I have lived. In general there aren't many complaints discussed when I take the time to visit with my neighbors. Nothing out of the ordinary. "Sometimes people drive too fast..." "People leave trash around..." etc...

Small time stuff.

Something different has been mentioned recently though, and after I took a moment to investigate I found it to be true. (This story could probably be more elaborate but for the sake of length I will cut to the chase) There is a certain amount of drug dealing going on at the fast food establishments off of the corner of Newport and Antelope. Namely inbetween Taco Bell and Jack in the Box.

It is a nightly thing and our local police have been notified but have yet to act on it. (This is starting to sound like the previous post)

These kids are underage, out at 12AM and later, and just sitting on the tail gate of their truck in between the two restaurants for hours at a time dealing and our local law enforcement has yet to get them to move on.

This is bad enough, but I happen to believe in live and let live. I don't agree but I don't force beliefs on anyone either.

Mind your own business and all that.

Where my opinion starts to change is recently these kids have turned to a certain level of violence against some rival kids. (Including threats on their life)

One night this escolated in my own neighborhood and caused me and a few other local homeowners to call the police when the fight came to my yard. (Did I fail to mention they had baseball bats?) The police came, talked to the boys and let them all go.

Wow. What does it take to get these things looked in to? I just don't know.

I hope you have a clue because I am starting to think the local law enforcement does not.

Gang Activity in Menifee Hills

An anonymous commenter wrote a response to one of Eric's previous posts, concerning what he/she perceives as increased gang activity in Menifee Hills, along La Ladera Road.

I'm posting it here as a new article because it deserves separate discussion...

Hello fellow Menifee residents:

I am extremely concerned with alot of bad activity occurring in the La Ladera residential area. I have been noticing an increase in off road vehicles, dirt bikes, mini bikes, lifted golf carts, dune buggy's etc. in the area. Mainly around the residential tracks and the La Ladera race strip that runs in between them.

This occurs on a regular basis. These off road vehicles are zipping up and down the 25 MPH zones, where our children play, couples are walking and vehicles travel in and out of driveways. These vehicles are exceeding the speeed limit, exceeding the maximum paasnger occupancy on the off road vehicle and usually has a drunk behind the wheel. I've seen guys drinking in golf carts, doing donuts, speeding and driving through home front lawns.

I have also noticed an increase in graffitti, gang activity and some really strange kids in the area. Itis a mix of gang banger types and punk rocker types. I watched a gathering of approximatley 10-20 thugs at the La Ladera Park after 10 p.m. wearing bandannas, baggy pants, sunglasses at night and low rider cars. I have also watched kids walking with mohawks, shaved heads, military boots, tight pants with jackets that have metal spikes on them. These kids were hitting mail boxes in the area with sticks and shouting profanity and anti-government slander as they did it.

What the heck is happening to our neighborhood? What have we created or allowed to polute our nice family oriented small town? I have peronnaly encountered several near accidents involving small children and vehicles with these off road vehicles. We as a community need to work together and not be afraid of these things. CALL THE POLICE when you see this happening! This is uncalled for and not nessasary. It is making our property value go down and endangering the life of our families and property. Stand Up and take action as a community! Who wants to be the one who has a child get hit by a dirt bike or golf cart? Or the one, who's house got tagged? Or the one who's vehicle gets stolen? Lets get this trouble out of here!

In my response to this person, I've seen the people described above. I don't think there is anything that we've done as a community to invite gangs. I think gangs are always looking for new places to call home, and the Menifee Hills community is a new community, having begun construction only five years ago.

I recall reading about new gangs moving into Menifee in the newspaper, but in the older communities. Now that Menifee Hills is pretty well established, it's perhaps no surprise we're now seeing them here.

Moreover, just because people have mohawks and wear bandanas doesn't mean they're gang members. Most of these people are just youths looking for an identity. Teenage-troublemakers have been around for as long as there have been teenagers.

As a solution, I propose homeowners in Menifee Hills (of which I am one), spend more time outdoors, in the community, making yourselves known. What troublemakers do not like, are lots of people watching them. Take your dog for a walk every day, or ride your bicycle around the neighborhood, take your kids to La Ladera Park, or just sit on the front porch and relax. The more people we have outdoors in the neighborhood, the less gang activity we're going to have.

I do agree that we should call the Sheriff's office to report all such illegal behavior, even though we know they're not going to respond. The Sheriff needs to see the calls in order to know that he can't ignore this community.