Menifee Offers Free Shuttle Service to Parade

The City of Menifee will provide free shuttle service from the Sun City community to the 21st Annual Independence Day Celebration Event on Saturday at Wheatfield Park.

Vehicles from a private transport company will pick up passengers at the Sun City Civic Association north parking lot, corner of Cherry Hills Blvd. and Sun City Blvd. The white 17-passenger Sprinter Van will also take passengers from Wheatfield Park back to the Sun City Civic Association after or during the event.

Originally the idea of City Manager Bill Rawlings, the free shuttle service is to insure transportation to the event for those who may not be able to get to the park on their own. The shuttle service will operate continuously from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

City officials hope to expand services such as this to other events throughout the year.

The celebration begins with a parade down La Piedra Road from Antelope Road to Menifee Road, beginning at 5 p.m. The parade concludes at Wheatfield Park, where guests can enjoy a kids fun zone, craft and food booths and fireworks at approximately 9 p.m.

Brian Plus Amanda Photography, Wedded Bliss

Married couple Brian and Amanda have built themselves a successful photography business in under a year. Their list of satisfied clients continues to grow by the day, and at this rate they’ll soon be booked up months in advance.

What began as a venture to specialize in newborn and maternity photography has blossomed into the ability to shoot those settings and so much more. Not only are Brian and Amanda happily married, but they have began the daunting task of capturing other happy couples on the markedly most important day of their lives, their wedding day.

Working together, this powerhouse team simultaneously memorializes multiple one-time-only moments with the utmost creativity and beauty. The advantage to having two wedding day photographers as opposed to one is that they can capture the same moment from different angles.

Amanda says, “We see things through different eyes. Brian looks at the artistic composition of a frame, and I see the minute details.” These two visions come together in one exquisite photograph.

In addition, they can also photograph two monumental happenings at once. Picture the bride walking down the aisle, her face full of excitement and love, without missing the look on the grooms face as he watches his beautiful bride walking towards him.

While weddings are far more labor and time intensive, the reward is that at the end of the day Brian and Amanda know they have eternally captured one of the best and most important days in two people’s life. And that in itself, is a priceless gift they are able to give.

Of initial importance is ensuring the clients absolutely adore the outcome of their pictures. But what makes them so successful as photographers is that they take pictures they know everyone will like, no matter the individual style of the couple.

Taking all things into consideration, namely optimum composition and lighting, the product is an immaculately composed picture that is aesthetically appealing to any eye.

Editing and retouching are included in all of their offerings, in which they focus on quality of an individual picture over quantity. Because a glowing bride would happily take one perfect wedding day picture over a thousand forgettable ones.

Website: Brian Plus Amanda
Like them on Facebook!
Phone: (951) 520-5541

Menifee 24/7 Adoptable Pet of the Week: Cisco

If you are looking for a new furry friend to add to you home, look no further! Cisco is a simply adorable little pup just looking for a family to love and call his own.

Adoptable pet of the week, Cisco.

Name: Cisco

Breed: Yorkie/ Jack Russel Terrier mix

Age: 2 years

Gender: Male, neutered

Temperament: Cisco is a sweet boy with a shy disposition. He is very friendly with people but a little timid at first. He plays well with the other small dogs at Sun City K9 and would do well in a home with or without other small dogs.

Cisco’s story: Cisco was a stray who was luckily found alive and brought into Sun City K9 Adoptions, so there is not too much information on him. He is a gentle little guy and would love to go home forever.

Sun City K9 Adoptions is conveniently open seven days a week. Or you can visit them at Menifee’s Petco in Countryside Marketplace every Saturday and Sunday to take a peek at some of their smaller adoptable dogs.

Sun City K9 Adoptions
26510 Murrieta Road
Sun City, CA 92586

Open Monday-Sunday
9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Closed from 12:00 to 1:00 for lunch
Website: Sun City K9 Adoptions

EMWD Announces Water Rate Increase

The Eastern Municipal Water District has announced a 4.5 percent increase in water rates for Menifee area residents as of January 2013. The increase will be applied to all four rate tiers equally and will result in monthly bills that are approximately $2.13 higher for typical customers who use approximately 20 billing units per month.

Cost-saving efforts successfully kept water rate increases to a minimum over the past three years, according to EMWD. However, EMWD is unable to fully absorb the impact of the latest 5 percent increase in rates from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD), which adds $4 million in expenses to EMWD over the next year for imported water purchases. The EMWD rate increase was announced to address the higher costs of water supply.

Existing conservation programs such as high-efficiency washer rebates, turf buy-back and large landscape audits will continue until the existing funds are exhausted. In addition, EMWD announced that sewer rates will increase 60 cents per month in order to meet debt repayment obligations for replacement and upgrade projects at EMWD’s four operating sewer treatment facilities.

For more information, visit the EMWD website.

Menifee 24/7 Favorite 5: 4th of July Edition

The 4th day of July, originally deemed Independence Day, annually celebrates the official adoption of the Declaration of Independence affirming freedom for America.

In today's world we proclaim our patriotic pride with barbecues, carnivals, festivities, and of course, fireworks. So for this red, white, and blue favorite five we pinpointed 5 local spots to celebrate the Fourth in true American style, with food and fire(works).

Annual Independence Day Celebration: Menifee

Menifee is celebrating a little early with one big party in Wheatfield park on Saturday evening, June 30th. Starting at 5:00 PM the Grand Marshall Mayor Denver will lead the parade along La Piedra Road, followed by live musical performances, craft and food booths, a fun zone for the kids, demonstrations, and more. The grand finale Fireworks Show starts at 9:00 PM.

Click here for more info and location.

4th of July Extravaganza: Temecula

Start your July fourth with a Parade through Old Town Temecula beginning at 10:00 AM. Then head over to Ronald Regan Park for festivities starting at 2:00 PM including a Kids Fun Zone, food vendors, and main stage entertainment. The community center pool will be open from 11 AM to 3 PM. End the day with a dazzling fireworks display starting at 9 PM.

Click here for more info and location.

4th of July Fireworks Show: Lake Elsinore

Beginning at 9 PM, which seems to be the officially agreed upon firework start time, on the 4th the City of Lake Elsinore is set to host a Firework Show over the Lake. So launch your boat, and layout under the stars to watch the sparkling spectacle. Free public viewing locations include Lakepoint Park, Elm Grove Beach, Davis Fishing Beach, Whiskers Fishing Beach and a portion of the levee system.

Click here for more info and location.

United We Stand Funfest: Moreno Valley

Like most good 4th of July celebrations, Moreno Valley will start theirs bright and early with a patriotic parade at 9:30 AM. Family Funfest kicks off from 2 PM to 9 PM, with all day tribute band entertainment, a wine and beer garden, food vendors, arts and crafts booths, bouncy houses, petting zoo, pony rides, and more! Fireworks will round out the festival beginning at 9 PM.

Click here for more info and location.

The Grand Tradition: Fallbrook

Pack up your lawn chairs and blankets and head to Fallbrook for their annual 4th of July party hosted by the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance. The gates open at 4:00 PM to a festival of live entertainment, dancing, children's activities, silent auction, a big ol BBQ dinner, beer and wine, and a military tribute. The night will end with a Firework show starting at 8:45 PM.

Click here for more info and location.

Image via

If you happen to have a Spiderman costume lying around, you might want to stop by Menifee (or any) Carls Jr. location on July 4th for a free Amazing Grilled Cheese Bacon Burger.

And if you’re still wondering where to watch the fireworks on the Fourth of July, we’ve got a list of every sparkling show from here to San Diego, courtesy of our friends at SWRNN.

Menifee Independence Day Parade Still Seeking Entries

The Lake Menifee Women's Club is still anxious for last minute entries in this year's parade. New entries are still being accepted! All community members are welcome and encouraged to join by decorating bikes, scooters, cars, trucks or creating floats to participate. Bring your scout troop, your staff, your neighborhood or your church choir and join the fun! For information about participating in this year's Parade please contact - Marcy Riehm (951) 377-6089 or email : For more information about the parade and other festivities visit

July 3 City Council Meeting Cancelled

The City of Menifee posted a public announcement Wednesday stating that the City Council meeting originally scheduled for Tuesday, July 3 has been cancelled.

The next City Council meeting will take place on Tuesday, July 17 at City Hall, 29714 Haun Road. City Hall will be closed July 4 in observance of the Independence Day Holiday.

10 Day Summer Fitness Blast at Elevate

For more information call 951.301.4499

Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce Installs Board of Directors for Coming Year

The Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce honored outstanding individuals in the business community and introduced its incoming Board of Directors Friday night at the annual Installation and Awards Tailgate Party held at the Orchard in Menifee.

Cyndi Lemke of the Ramona Humane Society was installed as Chair of the Chamber of Commerce for the coming year. Chair Elect is Robbie Motter of NAFE and Vice Chair is Tony Amatulli of Amatulli Auto Parts. Aaron Rachman of Feeling Lucky Entertainment was installed as Secretary and Bob Duistermars of Central County United Way is the Treasurer.

Other board members installed were:

Roxanne Rountree, Eastern Municipal Water District
Yanik Gozlan, Menifee Buzz
Jaime Sanchez, North Golf Course
JoAnna Quejada, Mt. San Jacinto College
Jim Diaz, Lake Chevrolet
Tracey Rose, Hospice of the Valleys
Pam Wagstaff, Mediacom
Brian Walker, Farmers Insurance
Dr. Jonathan Greenberg, Perris Union High School District
Zuberi Shakir, The Californian

Several outstanding individuals and businesses were also honored:

Feeling Lucky Entertainment, Home Based Business of the Year

Breakfast Club of Menifee, Restaurant of the Year

Menifee Valley Community Cupboard, Non-Profit Organization of the Year

Brian Walker Farmers Insurance, Small Business of the Year

Castillo Heating and Air Conditioning, Medium Business of the Year

Miller-Jones Mortuary and Menifee Lakes Country Club (tie), Big Business of the Year

Mike Castillejos, MVP (Individual of the Year)

Castillejos also was honored for his service as Chair of the Chamber of Commerce during the past year,

Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce Coffee Mixer, Wednesday, July 18, 7:30 am

Menifee’s Newport Beautification Project Has Finally Begun

The City of Menifee has had plans to landscape the median on Newport Road, located to the west of Haun Road between the Circle K and Regent Property, for quite some time.

With the I’s dotted and the T’s crossed, the time has finally come to commence the planned construction. That is to say, all permits are in place and the logistics of the construction process and the actual landscaping itself is as ready as it will ever be.

In talking with Rob Johnson, Senior Manager for the Community Improvement Department, he said as far as planning, “ The main issue was getting water and electric services to the median.” Once that was in place, the project was all set to start.

This segment of the Newport Median Landscape Improvement Project along Newport Road will be the first of several median landscape improvement projects planned throughout the City. The first landscaping and monument signage has a price tag of $60,000.

This City Council approved project is set to improve and enhance one of our beloved City’s most highly trafficked main corridors using lush trees and water efficient plant life.

Over the course of the installation construction crews will add; 36-inch box Fruitless Olive trees, 24-inch box Crape Myrtle trees, drought tolerant California friendly shrubs, boulders, river rock, and decomposed granite areas to the median.

A new point-to-point drip irrigation system will maintain the foliage and will be the first part of the project to be installed. The plants will then be planted, and lastly the Menifee monuments will be erected toward the end of the project.

The two monuments welcoming all to the City of Menifee will stand proud at each end of this particular median landscape. Adame Landscape, Inc. is working on the beautification and plans to have it completed in two to three weeks.

With an official start date of June 26, 2012, construction crews actually began the installation yesterday. The City kindly asks motorists to remember to go slow for the cone zone to ensure both driver and construction crew safety.

Construction times are set for 9 AM to 3 PM daily until completion. Thank you, from the City of Menifee for your patience during this project.

For more information, please contact Rob Johnson, Senior Manager, Community Improvement Department ( or (951) 672-6777).

Beer Hunter Introduces New Menu of Midweek Specials, Summer Cocktail List

Summer is upon us, and The Beer Hunter is welcoming in the season with a new menu of midweek food specials and a list of tantalizing summer cocktails.

Menifee's popular sports pub and grill, located in the Countryside Marketplace, now features some of its top food items in a standardized daily specials menu, Monday through Thursday. Each month, the most popular meals will be rotated as weekly specials every Friday.

Texas BBQ Burger

Cost of all midweek specials is $9.99. General Manager Chris Engstrom says the decision to switch to a set schedule of midweek specials was made for the convenience of customers.

"The specials were rotating and people were not seeing their favorites enough," Engstrom said. "For people who do want something different, we will still rotate specials on Fridays. The cost of all specials is the same, so people will always know what it costs and budget for it.

"This is all geared toward streamlining things for the customers. We want this place to have the feel of a friendly hometown neighborhood joint."

The new midweek specials are:

Monday -- Bacon cheddar sliders: Three mini burgers topped with bacon, cheddar cheese, grilled onions and herbed mayonnaise, served with crispy fries and cole saw.

Tuesday -- Chimichangas: Tender pulled pork, deep fried in a flour tortilla with creamy nacho cheese and fresh pico de gallo, served with chips and salsa.

Wednesday -- Chicken fried steak: Juicy steak, hand breaded and fried before being covered in rich pepper gravy, served with mashed potatoes and grilled vegetables.

Thursday -- Golden fried chicken: Crispy, hand breaded chicken, deep fried until golden, served with mashed potatoes, pepper gravy and grilled vegetables.

In addition, a food item and drink will be featured each month. The monthly food special for June is a BLT Melt. The June drink special is a Redneck Margarita, made with Budweiser beer to balance out the sweetness of the drink.

The summer cocktail list, which should be ready next week, features original cocktail mixes created by The Beer Hunter's bartenders.

"They range from sweet cocktails to shooters to just about everything else," Engstrom said. "There will be a drink for pretty much everyone."

Customers can enjoy all this while watching major sports events on the pub's 32 flat screen TVs. The bar also features 36 beers on draft.

The Beer Hunter
30080 Haun Road
Menifee, CA 92586

Spider-Man Eats Free at Carl's Jr. on July 4

Customers who come to any Carl's Jr. or Hardee's restaurant dressed as Spider-Man on July 4 will receive a free Amazing Grilled Cheese Bacon Burger, while supplies last. This includes the Carl's Jr. locations in the Menifee area -- 28023 Scott Road (at Antelope Road) and 26100 Newport Road.

The special offer is part of Carl's Jr.'s promotion with Columbia Pictures' release of The Amazing Spider-Man, coming to theaters in 3D July 3. Guests may come wearing an official store-bought Spider-Man costume or a homemade Spider-Man creation to be eligible. No masks, please.

The Amazing Grilled Cheese Bacon Burger features a charbroiled beef patty, bacon, melted American and Swiss cheeses and mayo, all on grilled bread. For customers without costumes, prices start at $3.29 and may vary by location.

Skate Park to Come to Menifee

Skateboard enthusiasts throughout Menifee can breathe a sigh of relief – a skate park is coming to Menifee.

Having been rumored to open since Menifee’s official conception, a location has now been set in the Audie Murphy Ranch development off of Newport Road.

The skate park will be a part of the Audie Murphy Ranch
development off of Newport Road.
Set to open in March of 2013, the fully equipped skate park will be accompanied by a public Sports Park. This area will also include basketball courts, soccer fields, playgrounds, and 11 acres of fun for the community.

Councilmember Darcy Kuenzi, who spearheaded the committee that jumpstarted the project, knew that this idea would be beneficial for Menifee from the start. 

“There have been inquires about the lack of activity in Menifee," she states. "We need more healthy activities for our youth to participate in and there is a high demand for a skate park, and that is my overall goal with this committee.”

A campaign group called the “Menifee Skate ParkProject” turned toward Facebook last year in hopes of getting the community involved in the crusade for the construction of a skate park. With hundreds of “likes” on their page, the plea is clear – Menifee is tired of trekking to other cities to skate.

Although it is still in the process of being built, the highly anticipated skate park is already being supported on a larger scale.

Professional skater Justin Gordon is part of Hurst Industriez, which will be sponsoring the new park. 

Justin Gordon, a professional skateboarder and soon to be Menifee citizen, is a part of the Hurst Industriez team that is sponsoring the grand opening of the park. He intends to play a hand in the construction of the park and ensure that “they will cater to the needs of the skaters while still remaining cost effective.”

Justin has also found that community’s with skate parks flourish.  “You see it all the time in communities that have skate parks, the kids are much more active and involved,” he observes. “It’s a great way to get kids off the streets and get them moving. The crime rate also tends to be much lower in these areas.”

Dennis Chapman, head of the Audie Murphy development with Brookfield Homes, has been quoted saying “He feels that while it is not a 'world class park' that the Skate Park Project had been dreaming of, it will be a very nice skate park with elements for skaters of all skill levels.”

This sign awaits eager skaters at the new location for the park.
To find out more about the Audie Murphy Ranch neighborhood visit their site here.

For more information about Justin Gordon and Hurst Industriez, visit the company website.

Watch UFC 147 Silva vs. Franklin at The Pitstop Pub Tonight

Make plans to be at the Pitstop Pub Sports Bar & Grill tonight June 23 for the UFC Heavyweight line up card Silva vs. Franklin. The prefights start at 6pm.

Pitstop Pub
26900 Newport Rd. Menifee, Ca 92584

For more information visit Pitstop Pub Facebook Page

Bill Zimmerman Announces Run for Menifee City Council

Having lived in Menifee for 23 years, Planning Commission Chairman Bill Zimmerman has a sense of the community's past and present, but his primary focus now is the city's future.

This afternoon, Zimmerman announced his candidacy for city council, running in District 3, which lies in south east quarter of Menifee (see map).

District 3 encompasses the Menifee Lakes and Menifee Greens communities in the north, all the way south to the Murrieta City limits, and the communities along Haun Rd.

The announcement came while city leaders recently submerged themselves in the process of updating its general plan, having completed a draft land use map, and now contemplating the state-required housing element, setting the tone for how the city will grow in the coming years.

bill zimmerman menifee

"We have so many opportunities right here in Menifee", the 48 year old Zimmerman said in his announcement.  "With creative planning, effective partnerships and resource sharing, we can be the most vibrant and attractive city in Southwest Riverside County".

Zimmerman has been married for 18 years, and has a 16 year old daughter.  He is currently a founding member of the Arts Council Menifee and the Menifee Valley Historical Association.

In addition, Zimmerman was recently appointed to the MSJC Foundation Board of Directors, whose mission is to promote student success by enhancing the quality of higher education through securing private support through community alliances.

"The college is a jewel in our crown", Zimmerman stated, who went on to explain that the campus plans to build an athletic stadium and performing arts center.  "It's exciting to know that we will grow together".

Accommodating for the anticipated growth means ensuring roadway infrastructure is in place.  Last Tuesday evening, the city council held a Capital Improvement Program workshop where council member Darcy Kuenzi stressed the importance of completing studies, preliminary plans, and right-of-way acquisition for the Holland Road overpass.

"These tasks will qualify the project with WRCOG (Western Regional Council of Governments), and better position it for funding allocation", Zimmerman said.  "Efficient traffic circulation is the key to ensuring our quality of life".

City council elections will be held November 6, 2012.

Menifee 24/7 Adoptable Pet of the Week: Joey

Today’s little pup was left tied to the Sun City K9 fence during the night, only to be discovered by the wonderful staff in the morning. It is not known why he was relinquished but he is just as happy and healthy as can be.

Adoptable pet of the week, Joey.

Name: Joey

Breed: Chihuahua mix

Age: 9 months

Gender: Male/ neutered

Temperament: Joey is a sweet little guy with a lot of love to give. He is very affectionate and shy. He plays well with other dogs and is gentle enough to be around children.

He came to Sun City K9 Adoptions as a puppy so he is not yet housetrained, but he is young enough to train and learn new cues.

Joey’s Story: Joey was left at Sun City K9 Adoptions along with two other small dogs with no information or reason. He was only a couple months old at the time and very scared. He is now well adjusted to life in his safe kennel at SCK9 and is just waiting to find his forever home.

Sun City K9 Adoptions
26510 Murrieta Road
Sun City, CA 92586

Open Monday-Sunday
9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Closed from 12:00 to 1:00 for lunch
Website: Sun City K9 Adoptions

Menifee Widcats Football Registration Tomorrow June 23rd

For more information please visit

Menifee 24/7 Favorite 5: Photographers

Summer is not only officially deemed wedding season, but also the time for graduation, family reunions, vacations, pregnancies, new babies, and everything in between worth remembering.

These special events deserve extra special attention and preservation. We wanted to ensure you have access to the very best photographers so as to capture your memorable moments in true style.

Courtney Chebat Photography: Senior Portraits

Courtney Chebat is an on location photographer who travels throughout Southern California. She specializes in high school senior portraits and also beautiful engagement, maternity, family, and children sessions. Courtney has created a business that doesn't just photograph clients or customers, but builds lifelong friendships.

(951) 852-8129
Like her on Facebook!

Brian Plus Amanda Photography: Newborns and Maternity

Brian and Amanda are a married team of photographers who enjoy capturing the most memorable moments of their client's lives. From the love and anticipation of an expectant mother to the pure innocence of a brand new human being, this duo has perfected the art of shooting with purpose to provide absolutely honest photographs.

(951) 520-5541
Website: Brian Plus Amanda
Like them on Facebook!

The Stache: Life Style Shoots

A premiere lifestyle photo and cinematographer, specializing in the niche markets of documentary style capture of music, fashion and portraiture, Bryan Giardinelli has shot everything from big name performers, all the way up to a Nestle™ Hot Pockets series of commercials, and more than a dozen weddings. With a Bachelors degree in Advertising from the Art Institute of California, this Menifee resident has a vivid imagination to pair with his amazing resume and wealth of experience and training.

"I believe that my photography speaks for itself."

(951) 694-2081
Website: Not A Portfolio
Like him on Facebook!

Janet Rayne Photography: Creative Photos and Editing

Janet is an energetic, hands-on photographer specializing in natural light lifestyle photography in creative locations for the perfect photograph every time. Her main mission is to capture not only big milestones but also everyday moments, and make beautiful photos more accessible and affordable for everyone. She says, “At the end of the day to know that I captured the sentiment and created the perfect memory for my customers makes my job so joyful and fulfilling.”

(951) 473-4111
Website: Janet Rayne Photography
Like her on Facebook!

Captivating Moments by Jenn Photography: Family Portraits

Jennifer O’Neal specializes in photographing families, but also loves to capture all of life’s special occasions as well. She has dedicated her efforts to providing each client with a custom portrait session that suits the family’s needs. Jenn says, “My clients allow me to live out my creative passion by inviting me to take part in some of the most wonderful moments of their lives.”

(951) 775-4441
Website: Captivating Moments by Jenn
Like her on Facebook!

Newport Road Repair Work Set for June 26

Road crews will perform repair work on Newport Road in the westbound direction from Winterhawk Road to a point 300 feet west of Evans Road on Tuesday, June 26 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. All businesses will be open during construction and motorists will have full access to them on Newport Road.

Traffic control will be provided for motorists through the construction zone. City of Menifee officials are telling motorists to expect minor delays during this construction period and suggest they use alternate routes. Every effort will be made to minimize the road construction duration.

newport road menifee

Menifee Residents Seek Help in Making a Pitch for a Trader Joe's Store in Town

City officials aren't the only ones trying to attract new businesses to Menifee. A group of residents have started a campaign to bring to town a Trader Joe's market.

Trader Joe's, which provides specialty food items in addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, is popular with shoppers seeking healthy alternatives to processed foods. The nearest Trader Joe's story is in Temecula, which isn't close enough for some Menifee residents, including Mandy DeMuth.

DeMuth and several of her friends and co-workers have gone on the Trader Joe's website to request a store location in Menifee. She hopes that by getting enough local residents to request a Trader Joe's location here, it may one day become reality.

"The nearest three stores -- Winchester Road in Temecula, Corona and Riverside -- are too far for my 77-year-old mom to drive," DeMuth said in an email. "My mom shared with her fellow citizens this link to try to let Trader Joe's know that we're here and want a store built locally -- but most of the senior community are not computer savvy. Please help me spread the potential of bringing Trader Joe's locally."

DeMuth said she and her mother prefer to shop at Trader Joe's "because of the quality products, pre-prepared portions and customer service for the value ... We like the choice of fresh items that are quick for me or easy for her. Gluten free, fat free and low sodium products are simple for us to identify there."

She says the parking lot at the Temecula store is small and crowded and that even that drive is sometimes too much for her mother. She urges residents to request a Menifee location for Trader Joe's by visiting the store's webpage here...

Menifee city council member Sue Kristjansson is also a proponent of a Trader Joe's store in Menifee.

"Trader Joe's would be a great addition to our city," Kristjansson said. "It's a great specialty store that has products not necessarily available in traditional grocery stores.

"We absolutely need to encourage businesses to come to Menifee. We have a fantastic city and these businesses are sure to thrive in this environment."

The Trader Joe's "location request" page listed through the above link allows residents to list their name, contact information, city for which a Trader Joe's is requested and any comments the person would like to make.

Menifee City Council Ad Hoc Committee Will Study Issues Regarding Dog, Cat Breeding

The Menifee City Council voted 4-1 Tuesday night to conduct an ad hoc committee study of dog and cat breeding and puppy mills within the city.

This action was the result of a discussion item introduced by council member Wallace Edgerton to consider banning the sale of dogs and cats in the city. Edgerton explained that the focus of his proposal was animal abuse that in some cases appears to be the result of neglect by breeders in the area.

"Council member (Tom) Fuhrman and I have both had previous experience where dogs have been abused, and we're concerned about the response of the Animal Friends of the Valleys," Edgerton said, referring to the agency with which the city contracts. "When I lived in a rural area of the city, dogs were dumped, abused, and many were hit and killed on Scott Road."

Edgerton cited a recent ordinance adopted by Aliso Viejo banning the sale of animals from commercial breeders at local stores. This ordinance, designed to reduce inhumane treatment of animals by regulating pet sales, is the latest of several such ordinances adopted by Orange County cities.

Carmen Cave, Menifee's planning director, is a member of the Aliso Viejo City Council that unanimously approved that ordinance in May. Edgerton's request was that the City Council use the Aliso Viejo ordinance as a resource in referring the matter to Menifee city staff for review and possible recommendation.

Several residents, reacting to prior announcement of this agenda discussion item and previous media coverage of the issue, spoke Tuesday night in opposition of an outright ban.

"This could affect people who have legitimate pet shops," said Sun City resident Ann Pica during the public comments section of the meeting. "We're supposed to be business friendly, and I don't think we should take away revenue by telling people they can't sell dogs or cats."

Edgerton said his primary concern was the mistreatment of animals that are bred but not sold or are later abandoned.

"I'm more concerned with the breeding," he said. "It's a concern when animals are euthanized because they have more animals than they know what to do with."

Mayor John Denver, who voted against the motion to send the matter to the council's ad hoc committee, said he believes in the system of code violations that already is in place for such offenders.

"This is a solution without a problem," Denver said. "We have a code for this. I think we have a consensus that we need to work with the present code enforcement on this issue."

After several minutes of discussion, Council member Darcy Kuenzi made the motion to send the matter to the council's ad hoc committee -- composed of herself and Fuhrman.

"I'm not familiar with how this issue affects Menifee directly," she said. "I'm willing, as a member of the ad hoc committee, to do some research on this and report back to council."

That report will be given to the City Council at its next meeting on July 17. Council members voted Tuesday to cancel the July 3 meeting.

Approval by the City Council of its budget for the upcoming fiscal year was simply a formality during the consent calendar portion of the meeting. The $37 million budget proposal originally presented by city staff and discussed by the council on June 5 was approved unanimously.

Council Considers Budget Approval Tonight

The Menifee City Council will consider final approval of its budget for the fiscal year 2012-13 at its regular meeting tonight at City Hall.

The proceedings will begin with a 6 p.m. workshop in which further details of the budget will be discussed. The proposed budget totals just over $37 million in expenditures, including $23.8 million from the general fund. This budget proposal reflects the loss of an estimated $3.9 million in vehicle license fees, which now goes to the state as the result of Senate Bill 89.

Budget approval is an agenda item for the regular meeting, which begins at 7 p.m.

Free Nutrition Seminar at The Sweat Shop on Tuesday, June 26th

Click on picture for larger size

For more information visit or
to register call 951-246-2369

Oasis Maids Makes Cleaning Convenient for Everyone

Cleaning is one of those things that usually takes the back seat in the whirlwind of daily activities. Between feeding the family, doing laundry, helping with homework, walking the dog, taking a shower, going to work, somehow cleaning the house becomes more and more time consuming.

So Oasis Maids came up with the concept to make residential cleaning affordable for anyone that finds themself short on time. Housekeepers and cleaning crews are no longer only for the wealthy, because in all honesty everyone deserves a clean home to return to at the end of the day, but nobody really has the time.

Oasis Maids has taken training its employees in stride and has a constantly growing team of experts to tend to everything from your dusty frames to those sticky kitchen floors.

With a professional background in commercial cleaning, Oasis Maids founder Eric Juarez decided to bring his skills into the homes of many Southern California residents at more than affordable rates - and as an active United States Marine, Eric has passed along his training in time management and efficiency to his employees.

With strong ideals and morals at the center of the company, Eric strives to provide top service by hiring the best possible candidates, and to make his services available to everyone.

When running his business, Eric puts forth his best effort, and he fully expects the same from each of his employees. Upon hiring, each individual is put through an extensive training, and until they are prepared to go above and beyond average service, they remain in training.

Actual homes of different sizes and levels of cleanliness are used for trainees to practice while Eric teaches the company standards and observes his employee’s technique. All personnel have an extensive knowledge of the cleaning products used and are required to maintain a professional appearance and attitude at all times.

Oasis Maids specializes in cleaning homes of all sizes, from apartment to large square footage, as well as various states of cleanliness and disarray. Before your cleaning session, a phone consultation will evaluate the condition of your home and specify the number of cleaning personnel and time needed to properly clean your home.

One to three trained technicians clean your home in one to four hour increments, depending on the cleaning required.

Another unique aspect of Oasis Maids is the five levels of service offered to customers.

1. One time deep clean: For homes necessitating a super in depth cleaning.

2. Signature service, reoccurring clean: For maintenance housework, clients can schedule regular monthly, weekly, or bi-weekly cleaning services

3. Ready to rent/ Ready to sell: This service deep cleans a home so it is ready for a renter or buyer to view the property and potentially move in.

4. Before and after party clean: Can get your home ready for company, and will even come back and clean after the fun is done.

5. Move in/ Move out: In order to reclaim your cleaning deposit and get ready to sell, let Oasis Maids detail your empty house. Or clean a home before you move in if the landlord/ previous sellers have not already done so.

Oasis Maids prides themselves in providing Menifee and the surrounding area with high quality reliable cleaning services. Licensed, bonded, and insured you can feel confident that your home is in excellent hands.

41593 Winchester Road, Suite 200
Temecula, CA 92590

Office: (855) 581-0745
Website: Oasis Maids

A Weekend of Remembrance for Donovan Adams

This past weekend several events were held across Menifee in order to raise money for the family of 19 year old Donovan Adams, who passed away in a car accident June 6th.

Due to Donovan’s love for football, a pickup game was held on Friday, June 15th in his honor. Hundreds of student came to Patriot Park in Perris to play the game or cheer on their peers.

A moment of silence was held at the Heritage High graduation on June 9th for Donovan, as well as the two seniors who missed the ceremony and are still recovering from the accident in the hospital.

On Saturday, June 16th a hike was held to travel up Heritage Hill. Friends and family members who embarked on this trip carried a cross up the hill to place in Donovan’s memory.

Later that evening, a public memorial was held at Heritage High School. This gave a sense of finality to the remembrance events and allowed Donovan’s loved ones to share their stories and memories, as well as donate to the Adam’s family through t-shirts, Henna tattoos of his name, and a bake sale.

If you missed these events and would still like to donate to Donovan’s family, you can do so through this website.

There will also be a car wash at Heritage High School on Saturday, June 23rd from 7am-12pm for $5 per car. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated.

Menifee Director of Public Works Explains Priority Given to Newport Road Interchange

Traffic congestion heading westbound over the Newport Road bridge will be reduced by the new design.

Story updated with additional information at 4:10 p.m.

Editor's note: Menifee 24/7 and City Hall have received many comments and inquiries since our June 6 story about the city's plan for road improvements -- especially the prioritizing of projects designed to alleviate traffic congestion. In an effort to clarify the situation, Director of Public Works and Engineering Don Allison sat down with Menifee 24/7 this week.

As part of the city staff's budget proposal to the Menifee City Council, a capital improvement project listed top priorities for road improvements. All are contingent on additional funding the city is seeking through grants and other revenue sources. The top three projects that were presented to the City Council for consideration, in priority order, are:

-- Reconstruction and expansion of the Interstate 215 interchange at Newport Road
-- Reconstruction and expansion of the 215 interchange at Scott Road
-- Construction of a freeway overpass at Holland Road

These projects are being considered while the city continues to attract additional businesses, including a Wal-Mart planned for Scott Road near Haun Road.

Recognizing the current traffic congestion crossing the freeway at Newport and at Scott and realizing the additional traffic jams that would be caused during construction on these interchanges, many residents are asking the same question:

Why won't the city build the Holland overpass first?

"We all understand Holland is an important project," said Don Allison, Director of Public Works and Engineering for the city. "Ultimately, the city council sets these priorities. It's their decision if they want to change them. But we believe they're concurrent with this plan."

Here's why:

According to Allison, the Newport Road interchange was given top priority by the county long before Menifee became a city. County officials designated it as a regional corridor from east to west. Drivers use this route from Hemet, where it was expanded by county work crews as Domenigoni Parkway, some 20 miles to the west to Lake Elsinore, where it is Railroad Canyon Road. Thousands of vehicles use this important artery every day, encountering one major bottleneck -- at Newport Road and the 215.

Design renderings show the configuration of the proposed Newport on-ramps and off-ramps.

For this reason, Riverside County has been involved in the design and funding of the Newport Road interchange project from the beginning. The Holland Road overpass also was identified by the county as a priority, but it has not yet been given the same priority as a major regional corridor, Allison said.

"A big design team has been working on this," Allison said about the Newport project. "The design project is just about completed. Now we're trying to line up all the financing."

The project already has received $17 million in funding through the state's Total Road Improvement Program (TRIP). In working to acquire the remaining $20 million needed to fund the $37.3 million project, City of Menifee officials have the opportunity to receive financing through other county and regional sources. These include the Transportation Uniform Mitigation Fee (TUMF), which is administered through the Western Riverside Council of Governments (WRCOG); the Regional County Transportation Commission (RCTC); and other state and federal sources.

The TUMF ordinance, approved by the Riverside County Board of Supervisors, generates funding for regional highway improvements by charging a fee to developers of new construction in the area. The Newport interchange qualifies for TUMF funding because it has been identified as a regional transportation project. The Scott Road interchange -- another regional highway project -- also is on track to qualify for TUMF funding.

The proposed Holland Road overpass is also eligible for TUMF funding, Allison said, but that funding has not been pursued at this time. Sources of funding identified so far are low-cost loans and grant opportunities.

"We just have to identify it (TUMF funding for Holland) as something we have to pursue," Allison said. "Even if we started the Holland project today, it would not get built before the Newport project. It would need a preliminary design, environmental report, funding, and acquisition of the right of way."

When the Newport Road bridge was expanded previously, a new section of the bridge was added on the north side of the existing bridge, Currently, the section with the north lanes is slightly higher than the section on the south side, with K rail in the median. Each side has two traffic lanes plus a left-turn lane -- one leading drivers from westbound Newport onto the 215 South on-ramp and the other taking drivers from eastbound Newport onto the 215 North on-ramp.

In the new design, Allison explained, each side would have four through lanes and no left-turn lanes, thus minimizing traffic stops at each end of the bridge. Freeway on-ramps would begin in the outside lane and loop around onto the 215. Motorists heading across the bridge would be stopped at a red light only when drivers coming off the freeway are given a green light to turn left onto Newport.

Looking eastbound on Holland Road at Antelope Road, the Holland overpass would give motorists a clear path over Interstate 215.

Allison said that during construction -- which is expected to begin some time in 2013, if funding needs are met -- two through lanes will be open each way, with one left-turn lane. The older, south portion of the bridge will be removed and the newer portion will be widened, effectively doubling the traffic capacity once completed.

The Scott Road interchange will have a similar design. When funding is acquired and designs completed for the Holland Road overpass, the bridge will extend from Haun Road on the west to Hanover Lane on the east, passing over Antelope Road and "landing" in an area which is now vacant land east of the Cantabria Apartments.

"That grass area is to accomodate earth work as the bridge comes downhill," Allison explained. "That area has been set aside specifically for the Holland project."

That, apparently, is probably two or three years off. Meanwhile, working with county officials, Allison and his staff are intent on seeing the Newport project through to completion as soon as possible.

Coming westbound off the Holland overpass, motorists would return to ground level at Hanover Lane.

Pitstop Pub Offers Fine Food, Drink, Music and Entertainment to Menifee Residents

Big things are happening at Pitstop Pub Sports Bar and Grill, where an expanded menu and a full schedule of entertainment opportunities appeal to customers.

Pitstop Pub, located on Newport Road just west of Bradley Road, offers a full bar, daily food specials and 14 big TV screens showing the most popular sports events. The pub is decorated with banners saluting many sports teams, including local favorites such as the San Diego Chargers and Padres, the Dodgers and Angels and the Raiders.

Live bands perform every Friday night from 9 p.m. until closing. Tuesday is an open microphone night. Another popular feature is the pub's Karaoke nights, which are Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.

"The turnout for the Karaoke is really good," owner John Geer said. "The Karaoke host has a following, and we've drawn in a lot of new people, too."

An expanded kitchen will enable Pitstop Pub to serve pizza in addition to its current menu, which features hot wings, tacos, burgers, fish and chips, beef dips and more. Customers can enjoy the food and drink in the pub's 3,200-square-foot facility, which is more than double the original space when Geer took over the business.

"Our lunch crowd is building," said Geer, who added that the pub offers Happy Hour from 3-7 p.m. and from 9 p.m. until closing Sunday through Thursday.

"The late night Happy Hour draws a lot of people from the businesses around here," Geer said. "We get people from Texas Roadhouse after they close, Lowe's, Red Robin, places like that. We'll make them burgers, chicken sandwiches ... anything you can grill."

Special events such as UFC fights are shown on the big screens, and of course the place is hopping during football season. The pub also includes four pool tables, which are in constant use. Pool leagues are held Monday through Thursday and an open tournament is held each Saturday.

"We have something going all the time," Geer said. "A guy called the other day asking if we have a ping pong table. We might have to get one so when the demand is there, we roll it out."

Pitstop Pub
26900 Newport Road
Menifee, CA 92584
(951) 679-0869

Luau Tomorrow For Ramona Animal Shelter

Public Invited

The Ramona Animal Shelter is pleased to serve the residents of Menifee and they are inviting the public to join them in this fundraising celebration. Buy tickets today by contacting 951.654.8002 or visiting

Menifee 24/7 Adoptable Pet of the Week: Amy

We usually feature furry canine friends, but today we have the sweetest little kitty who is looking for a forever home. Animal Friends of the Valleys is offering half price cat adoptions for the entire month of June, so stop by and pick out a pretty feline friend.

Adoptable pet of the week, Amy.

Breed: Maine Coon Mix

Age: 3 years

Gender: Female, spayed

Shelter: Animal Friends of the Valleys

Intake number: 162745

Temperament: Amy is a brown and tabby cat with a gentle disposition. She gets along well with other cats, but would prefer a home with no other pets. She loves to be cuddled and held and would do well with someone who can show her attention and affection.

Animal Friends of The Valleys
33751 Mission Trail
Wildomar CA 92595

Website: Animal Friends of the Valleys