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County to Purchase 98 Acres Adjacent to Wright’s Field in Alpine for a NEW PARK – January 8, 2019

January 8, 2018 Submitted By George Barnett

Today the County Department of Parks & Recreation advised Alpine Community Planning Group members and others that the Board of Supervisors is expected to approve tomorrow a land purchase in Alpine for a town park. The proposed land is 98 acres abutting Wright’s Field along South Grade Road.

This is good news for Alpine as the purchase preserves the land from residential development, and together with the portion of Wright’s Field owned by the Back Country Land Trust, it extends preserved passive parkland right in the middle of our town to a plot nearly 330 acres in size.

This to me is also a fitting tribute to Supervisor Dianne Jacob who is finishing her long and distinguished career in 2020 as Supervisor of the 2nd District and the Backcountry. She has been Alpine’s strongest advocate for conservation, improved roads, better law enforcement, and our local schools, and for parkland.

Below is a map of the proposed land purchase (IN YELLOW) and the Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) owned parts of Wright’s Field bounded in white. All together, this County acquisition and BCLT property provides Alpine with a wonderful, unsurpassed passive parkland of immense environmental value. How many towns anywhere have a 330 acre environmental preserve & parkland in their middle?

The public has always been invited to use BCLT’s private-owned portion of WF north of South Grade Road as a “passive parkland”. By definition that means open to the general public for hiking, horseback riding, dog walking, star gazing, and so on – all passive activities with the only requirements to stay on the trails, to leash dogs, to pickup after dogs and to not leave trash behind. The County is buying 98 acres of WF not owned by BCLT, but from a speculative Dallas-based investor LLC. My understanding is that the County will also plan on passive uses, that is – no active sports playing fields. Maybe there’ll be picnic places, a pavilion, a kiddie playground, or things of that nature that town’s people want. But we’ll find that out in due course when the County presents some plans to Alpiners. The County is also supporting plans to upgrade the playing fields at Joan MacQueen Middle School (which are deemed active parkland), and those existing facilities currently serve la cross, soccer, soft ball and limited track and field, with the softball fields possibly becoming dual use with football. The final plan is in the hands of the Alpine Union School District.

George Barnett


Community Effort is Making Alpine Boulevard GREENER!

December 5, 2018 – By the alpine Chamber of Commerce

Twelve new native drought-tolerant plants, including two oak trees, are officially growing along Alpine Boulevard!

About 15 volunteers participated in the preparation, digging and watering on Dec. 1 to replace greenery outside The Alpine Sun newspaper at 2144 Alpine Blvd. and the nearby Alpine Woman’s Club headquarters at 2156 Alpine Blvd. As curious passersby turned to watch and business people came out to praise the beautification effort, five plants and one tree were placed at each location.

“We had a fantastic turnout,” said Jon Green, Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) program and outreach director. “We got a lot of kudos.” The Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce, BCLT and the Certified Community Wildlife Habitat organized the effort to replant the boulevard after construction damage.

A Lush Handmade Cosmetics grant to the land trust has provided 500 free plants for participating businesses and property owners. Watering arrangements can be made for the first year.   Counting two plants placed unofficially in November outside Alpine Motorsports & Equipment Repair at 2435 Alpine Blvd., 14 new plants are growing so far. More are due in December and January.

During the latest planting Green provided free seminars about native planting techniques, plant selection, watering needs, mulch and erosion control. “It was amazing,” said Jennifer Tschida, The Alpine Sun’s associate publisher and Alpine’s 2018 Honorary Mayor. “Jon was super organized, ready to go.”

Tschida, who is expecting a baby soon, said she was touched by the tree selection. Green said he chose a 2-foot-tall tree for the Alpine Woman’s Club and for the newspaper “a little baby oak so it will grow up with her son.” “Fifty years from now my son will be driving on Alpine Boulevard with his family, pointing and saying ‘That’s my tree,’” Tschida said.

For more information, to be a sponsor or to volunteer to water plants, call the Chamber at (619) 445-2722 or e-mail; or


Alpine Chamber of commerce Logo Alpine Ca 91901Jo Moreland, Communications
Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce
1620 Alpine Blvd., Ste. 208
Alpine, CA 91901
(619) 445-2722

Back Country Land Trust NATIVE PLANT SALE – November 3, 2018

BCLT (Back Country Land Trust) NATIVE PLANT SALE on Saturday November 3, 2018 from 9am-1pm (Intro to Native Plants starts at 8:30am) at Joan MacQueen Middle School – 2001 Tavern Road. Expert advice will be on hand for plant selection and tips for plant care. Contact us for pre-orders and planting advice! Presented by BCLT for more info please call 619-504-8181

Meetings Encourage Alpine Boulevard Planting Movement, Volunteers Wanted for Adopt-A-Plot

By The Alpine Chamber of Commerce – October 2018

The process for creating a more attractive main street in Alpine moved ahead on two fronts on Oct. 10 during two Town Hall meetings about the project. The sessions to learn more about the mission to beautify Alpine Boulevard, the rural community’s main street, were at the Alpine Library at 1752 Alpine Blvd.

Between meetings, two more businesses agreed to join the project and another one volunteered to sign on, according to project organizers from the Back Country Land Trust (BCLT), Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce and the Certified Community Wildlife Habitat. “We have to respect property rights,” Jon Green, BCLT program and outreach director, told those at the meetings.  “We have to respect what the people want.”

Lori Bledsoe, Chamber membership and events director, outlined the boulevard’s problems and history. She was also ready to help people fill out county permit applications for planting plots that are on county right-of-way “We’re making this as easy as possible,” Bledsoe said. “The county has to be careful because of all this diagonal parking on the boulevard.”

Carlette Anderson of the Certified Community Wildlife Habitat is signing up volunteers to help maintain the plantings installed starting Dec. 1. Green said it was hoped the planting will be done by April.

The county, which requires permits for any planting on its right-of-way property, has pre-approved two types of oak trees and four types of plants, all native and drought-tolerant, for its plots. Green reminded everyone that drought-tolerant doesn’t mean drought-resistant. BCLT has a grant from Lush Cosmetics that allows the land trust to donate 500 of those types of plants to the boulevard project. “We’re getting a lot of feedback from different folks who want other plants,” but the grant received doesn’t fit with those requests, Green said.

*These BCLT maps below show the sections of Alpine Blvd. that the replanting project will cover. The top photo is of the center of town. The bottom photo is west Alpine Boulevard to the Alpine Creek area. In both photos the colored areas are bare dirt spots on the boulevard. There are 35 highlighted areas with little or no vegetation along the street in the center of town and 26 such areas in the second photo. The orange areas need county easement permits.  The green areas are private properties ready for planting

As of the first meeting, four businesses and one organization were signed up —- The Alpine Sun, Alpine Tobacco Company, Alpine Woman’s Club/Historic Town Hall, Rustic Roots Salon and KC’s Closet. Alpine property owners and residents at the meetings had questions and concerns, but many seemed to be looking forward to a better look on the boulevard. “I think it’s encouraging,” said Ken Dawson, a 50-year Alpine resident. “The approach is well thought out.”

Water was a major concern. Green said  the plots will need about 2-1/2 gallons of water a week at first but that will quickly drop off to much less in the long run. He volunteered a water truck for once a year.  “We’re working on getting water in from Padre Dam Municipal Water District and/or other possible sources,” said Bledsoe.

Families, businesses, organizations and school children who volunteer to Adopt-A-Plot are also being sought, organizers said.  “My original vision was to have trees up and down the boulevard, but many owners didn’t want them to block businesses and signs,” Green said. He said others want low plants and the County of San Diego doesn’t want anything that would affect driving or the street.

Organizers made it clear that this is an effort to make Alpine more inviting now to visitors as well as residents, rather than wait any longer for someone else to maybe do it. “Right now we need to get started, because right now all anybody sees are old trees coming down,” Green said.  “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”

For more information, call the Chamber at (619) 445-2722 or e-mail; or;


Re-Planting Alpine Boulevard: Town Hall Meeting OPEN TO THE PUBLIC – October 10, 2018

BCLT (The Back Country Land trust) and the Alpine Chamber of Commerce are leading an effort to re-plant Alpine Boulevard with native plants! Two town hall meetings have been scheduled for October 10th – afternoon and evening – so everyone has a chance to attend. We’ll be meeting at the Alpine Library from 12:30 to 1:30pm and from 6-7pm. Business owners interested in signing up for this program and volunteers wanting to participate in re-landscaping our main street are encouraged to attend. Alpine Library is located at 1752 Alpine Blvd, Alpine, CA 91901. For more information call (619) 445-4221 or email Jon Green (BCLT)


County Pre-Approves Plant Varieties for Alpine Boulevard Beautification

Six drought-tolerant native trees and plants have been pre-approved by the County of San Diego for county right-of-way planting on Alpine Boulevard.

October 2018 – Two trees, the Engelmann Oak and the Coast Live Oak, and four plants —- White Sage, Cleveland Sage, Foothill Penstemon and California Fuchsia —- are acceptable, according to Project Manager Michael Aguilar of the county’s Field Engineering/Road Maintenance. The plants are being donated by the Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) for the “I Love a Green Alpine” project to beautify the boulevard between Tavern Road into the 2500 block of Alpine Boulevard.

“Each (planting) site on county property will still need to be approved on a case by case basis with a county tree permit,” said Jon Green, BCLT program and outreach director. The Alpine Community Wildlife Habitat Program will assist with planting and watering the plots. The Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce is helping to get county permits for the boulevard planting project.

More information will be available at two town hall meetings about the project on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at the Alpine Library, 1752 Alpine Blvd.

Anyone can attend the meetings, scheduled from 12:30 -1:30 p.m. and 6-7 p.m. “Our main goal for the town hall meetings is to help the business owners fill out the county permit applications for the planting,” Green said. “And we want to answer any questions.” He said business owners and others have expressed interest in the “Adopt a Plot” part of the “I Love a Green Alpine” project.

“The community of Alpine is still smarting from the construction that affected the boulevard,” said Lori Bledsoe, Chamber membership and events director.  “However, this is the way that the community of Alpine can make it better.” Green said the community needs to be involved in order for the project to succeed. Business sponsors and volunteers are being actively recruited, he said.

“Only property owners can sign on officially to receive plants, but volunteers and sponsors can come from anywhere to help,” Green said.

Property owners interested in landscaping can call Green at (619) 504-8181. Call the Chamber at (619) 445-2722 to volunteer or to get additional information.

For more information call the Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce at (619) 445-2722.  The Chamber is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Submitted by: Jo Moreland, Communications, Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce.



Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) Upcoming Events & Volunteer Opportunities for October-December 2018

Upcoming Events & Volunteer Opportunities Hosted by: The Back Country Land Trust (BCLT)

Saturday, October 6, 2018 – Trail Workday at Wright’s Field from 9am-12pm Meet at trailhead behind Joan MacQueen Middle School | Saturday, November 3, 2018 – BCLT NATIVE PLANT SALE (Intro to Native Plants starts at 8:30am) 9am-1pm Joan MacQueen Middle School – 2001 Tavern Road. | Saturday, December 1, 2018 – Planting with Native Plants Volunteer Workshop – 9am-12pm Meet at the Alpine Sun, 2144 Alpine Blvd. Please contact us by phone or email with questions or to RSVP for any of these events. All volunteer hours may be certified for community service and student school requirements.


Back Country Land Trust (BCLT)

A New Effort is Under Way to Beautify the Commercial Heart of Alpine

By The Alpine Chamber of Commerce

Alpine is working on a community effort to plant drought-tolerant native plants along Alpine Boulevard, the town’s main commercial street.

A Planting plan growing for Alpine’s main street – A new effort is under way to beautify the commercial heart of Alpine. Two town hall meetings have been scheduled on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at the Alpine Library to talk about the proposed planting of drought-tolerant native plants along Alpine Boulevard.

The Back Country Land Trust (BCLT), the Alpine Community Wildlife Habitat Program and the Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce have been developing the project.

BCLT is donating plants and support for one-year for the “Adopt a Plot” project, the Chamber will help get county permits for it and the Alpine Community Wildlife Habitat Program will assist with planting and watering, said Jon Green, BCLT program and outreach director.

“But we really need people to get involved,” Green said. “We really need volunteers to help with this project. We’re asking people to plant and then water the plants for one year.  After that it will fall to the property owner.”

He said the plants from Tavern Road into the 2500 block of Alpine Boulevard will need about two gallons of water a week until they’re established. “After that they will need no more watering,” said Green. “Your taxes aren’t going up one penny with this project.  You’re also helping the (Alpine Union) school district with a future planting project.”

Chamber Chairman Joseph Perricone, a school board member and owner of The Canvas Makers, said the “beautification process for our town only enhances the property values for everyone.” “It’s a positive thing for everyone,” said Perricone.

The Oct. 10 town hall meetings are scheduled from 12:30-1:30 p.m. and 6-7 p.m. at the library at 1752 Alpine Blvd. “We want as many Alpine Boulevard property owners as possible to sign up that day for the program,” Green said.  ”The more property owners interested in participating, the more the County of San Diego will see the whole community is behind us.” That’s critical, he explained, because each boulevard property needs to be approved by the county on a case-by-case basis in order for the water-wise landscaping project to proceed.

“It’s going to be a door-to-door effort,” Green said.  “We’re hoping all the business owners are going to come to the meetings and anybody who wants to replant the boulevard.”

Director Carlette Anderson of the Alpine Community Wildlife Habitat Program said the idea for the beautification happened while she and Green were talking about invasive plants. “There are so many places where we could plant on Alpine Boulevard,” Anderson said. “I said we could have different organizations and families adopt one business (plot).” She pointed out that the proposed project is similar to the “Gardens on the Boulevard” project by Maureen Austin and the CHIRP (Center to Help Instill Respect and Preservation for Garden Wildlife, Inc., after the Sunrise Powerlink construction on Alpine Boulevard.

“We’re going to turn weeds into green,” Anderson said. “’I Love a Green Alpine’ —- that’s going to be the thing.’”

Green said the first planting is already scheduled from 9 a.m. to noon on Dec. 1 at The Alpine Sun, 2144 Alpine Blvd. It will be a native plant planting and a trash pickup before the big Alpine Village Christmas Parade of Lights & Snow Festival on Dec. 7, Green said. “We’re really cleaning up the town before the parade,” he said. “The initial plants will be protected during the parade.”


Alpine Chamber of commerce Logo Alpine Ca 91901Jo Moreland, Communications
Alpine Mountain Empire Chamber of Commerce
1620 Alpine Blvd., Ste. 208
Alpine, CA 91901
(619) 445-2722



Annual Coastal Clean Up in Alpine Creek Yields Less Trash Than Ever

There are few things to be optimistic about when it comes to trash, but the latest Coastal Cleanup project in Alpine brought hope.

By the Alpine Chamber of Commerce – September 2018 (Photos courtesy of Back Country Land Trust)

There’s good news on the trash front in Alpine! With more volunteers and sponsors than ever, the Annual Coastal Cleanup by the Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) picked up less trash on Sept. 15 from the Alpine Creek bed area, said Jon Green, program and outreach director for the land trust.

“It was excellent, one of our best events,” Green said. “Just all around good news. It was our smallest number of pounds that we’ve ever cleaned up.  For the first time ever, less than half of it was from the homeless camps.”

The environmental event in the rural foothills community was the farthest inland site of 106 selected by “I Love a Clean San Diego” around San Diego County.

Green said about 40 percent of the 1,800 pounds of trash collected in Alpine was from homeless camps. The rest was litter collected along Alpine Boulevard and illegal dumping from the roadside, he said.  “It’s an overall positive direction,” said Green. “There’s fewer people sleeping in the creek bed area, but there’s more people dumping trash off the road.”

Some trash collected by the 29 volunteers “has clearly been there for decades,” the BCLT official said. Green said two refrigerators, two ovens, an electric crock pot and an electric can opener were among the debris. “We did find one needle,” he said. “There were about 60 pounds of trash for recycling.”

In addition to the Back Country Land Trust —- which hosted the community event —- and “I Love a Clean San Diego, Waste Management, KEEN Footwear, the Alpine Beer Company and the American Conservation Experience (ACE) were sponsors this year.

Green noted that the annual BCLT cleanups are bringing new organizations and businesses to partner with local businesses and groups to help Alpine and the Mountain Empire.

ACE established a base last year in Dulzura. Julia Parish, ACE regional director for its Southern California branch, said they provided 13 volunteers for the Alpine cleanup. “We are a national nonprofit organization that places recent high school and college graduates into conservation internships for conservation and land management projects,” Parish said. “We were really excited about the project location because most of our people are more familiar with coastal areas. We were very successful in removing a lot of debris and trash from a very unique stream bed area.”

The ACE interns saw many native plants for the first time and Green was able to teach them about what they were encountering, she said. Parish said ACE volunteers were also pleased to meet with other people from around the county, such as Lakeside, during the event. Working at a site that funnels water down to San Diego was also interesting. “I know when we cleaned up trash in Alpine it was exactly what you see what you clean up at the beaches,” said Parish.

Alpine Chamber of commerce Logo Alpine Ca 91901Alpine Chamber of Commerce
1620 Alpine Blvd., Suite 208 Alpine, CA  91901

Open Monday – Thursday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Visit our website at


Volunteer to Help Clean Up Alpine Creek on Coastal Cleanup Day – September 15, 2018

Back Country Land Trust in Alpine is proud to once again be a part of I Love A Clean San Diego’s (ILACSD) Coastal Cleanup Day, San Diego County’s largest volunteer cleanup event of the year! As the furthest inland site, we’ll be cleaning up Alpine Creek to prevent trash and litter from washing downstream to our reservoirs and the ocean.

Join us on Saturday, September 15, 2018 from 9am to 12pm at 1620 Alpine Blvd (behind the Rite-Aid). Alpine Beer is offering 10% discount to all volunteers the day of the event, and KEEN Footwear is bringing free merchandise for our first 30 volunteers to arrive day of event.

Thousands of San Diegans will gather on this day to cleanup and beautify over 100 coastal and inland sites across the county.  Sign up for a site in your neighborhood to make a lasting impact on our entire region. Online registration for Coastal Cleanup Day is at: Contact BCLT for more info – or 619.504.8181.