Canyon dig it! – Los Penasquitos Canyon Reserve

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It might not be Yosemite, but Los Penasquitos Canyon Reserve in San Diego has plenty of beautiful trails to explore. One of the best ways to see this 4,000 acre suburban wilderness is on a moderate 7-mile (round-trip) mountain bike ride.

Los Pensaquitos Ana Pines 1The well-marked, dog-friendly, multi-use hardpacked trail can be taken from the reserve entrance. There aren’t many elevation changes so it’s great for a leisurely walk or for beginner mountain bikers like us.

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One of the best rewards of the trail is the waterfall cascading through the volcanic rocks about 3 miles out. Well, to be accurate it’s more of a stream than a waterfall. But we loved soaking our feet in the cold water.

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Things to remember before heading out; bring plenty of water and sunblock, it is hot out there and most of the trail is not shaded. A 20 minute drive from Hillcrest makes it a great choice for a quick getaway from it all.

Great Hike or Bike! 

*The scenery of the canyon includes:

  • a waterfall cascading through volcanic rock;
  • a streamside forest of giant California live oaks;
  • groves of majestic sycamore trees;
  • a year-round stream populated by Pacific tree frogs, crayfish and largemouth bass;
  • a freshwater marsh hosting a variety of aquatic birds including great blue herons, egrets, mallard ducks and more; mule deer, bobcat, coyote and raccoon are just a few of the mammals that can be observed throughout the Preserve.

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*Info from:


Salvation Mountain – Off the Beaten Path

A few hours away from San Diego in Niland, Calif. 190 miles southeast of Los Angeles, in the lower desert of Southern California in Imperial County just east of the Salton Sea and about an hour and a half from Palm Springs, you will encounter Salvation Mountain.Salvation Mountain Ana Pines 34 The artist, Leonard Knight, an Army veteran of the Korean War, discovered God in a life-altering experience in 1967 while visiting his sister in San Diego. He visited her often and decided to settle a few hours away in Niland in 1984 when he began painting the mountain with messages of devotion to God. “I painted the mountain because I love God and I love people,” Knight’s quoted as saying in the on-site description. The first message you read upon arrival is “God is Love”. 

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The colorful mountain also includes flowers, trees, waterfalls, suns and birds and is surrounded by cars that are also painted. The mountain is approximately 40 feet high and spans about 150 feet across, made of local adobe clay and mostly donated paint.

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You don’t have to be religious to appreciate the two decades of dedication that Knight put into his art. He lived simply on a small Social Security check and slept in the back of his truck. Love is written everywhere and he believed that love expanded to everyone. He didn’t attend church because he believed you can love God from anywhere however, he always respected those that did. 

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In 2001, the Folk Art Society of America declared it a National Folk Art site worthy of protection and preservation. Knight died Feb. 10, 2014 at the age of 82. Dedicated volunteers currently preserve Salvation Mountain.

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More Photos by Ana Pines


92 and breaking records – Harriette Thompson

Harriette Thompson does it again and this time she breaks another record. On Sunday, May 31, 2015 at San Diego’s Rock N Roll Marathon at the age of 92, she became the oldest woman to finish a Marathon. She also set the world record for fastest time by a woman over 90 at 7 hours, 7 minutes and 42 seconds. She is a two-time cancer survivor and has raised over 90,000 for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. She started running at the age of 76 and missed one race when she was undergoing cancer treatment. Her husband passed away in January from cancer and she is battling a staph infection in her legs. Her determination has made her an inspiration to many.



Passes to FilmOut San Diego

FilmOutSD_2015Festival_SDCNN-GaySDBannerAd_250x250pxWe’re proud to sponsor FilmOut San Diego’s 17th year.  We’re also happy to provide tickets to our fans for this wonderful event. The mission of FilmOut San Diego is to enlighten, educate, and entertain the communities of San Diego County & beyond through the exhibition of LGBT-themed films. FilmOut San Diego seeks to recognize, promote, celebrate and support the important diverse artistic contributions LGBT filmmakers make to our community.

How to enter: 

Like our Facebook page and make a comment on the Give-Away post why you think it’s important to have an LGBT Festival. Comments with the most likes will win a ticket package that includes 2 for each of the below movies. Can’t make all of them? Pass it on to your friends.

Saturday, May 30th 

11:00 am – Best of LGBT Shorts
3:00 pm – Game Face (Festival Spotlight)
5:15 pm – BFFS
7:30 pm – Paternity Leave (Boys Centerpiece)

Sunday, May 31st

1:00 pm – In The Turn (Girls Centerpiece)



Restaurant Review: Tacos El Paisa

Address: 3096 National Ave (b/t 30th St & 31st St ), San Diego, CA 92113
Price: $
Rating: 4/5

Review: The food here is incredibly delicious; fresh, and spicy. You go up to the cashier to order your food and they bring you a platter with free chips with different types of salsa, carrots, slices of radish, and cucumbers.


I was going to order Tripa burritos until we saw this sign behind the cashier. We decided to order Molcajete and share.


We made the right decision. The asada was tender, chicken pieces were mouth watering, shrimp was tasty, nopales were great (we’re not fond of them normally but we tried a couple of strips), and the longaniza was nice and spicy. It was topped off well with queso fresco, aguacate, and salsa molcajete. I loved the longaniza the most. I have a fondness for spicy food and it satisfied my palate very well. The order comes with warm tortillas. You can choose between corn and flour tortillas. Best part? It’s only $14.99 for such a complete meal.


If you’re looking for the restroom, it’s outside in the parking lot. You need to ask for the key from the cashier.


Mama’s Day 2015: An Extraordinary Culinary Evening

Touted as San Diego’s best culinary event, Mama’s Day, never ceases to amaze us with signature dishes from over 55 top local chefs, restaurants, and caterers. It’s one of the annual fundraising that we look forward to. Now in it’s 25th year, the event is held the Friday evening before Mother’s Day. The event was held at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine and is often sprawled out around the pool area. The Hyatt staff did a wonderful job accommodating everyone indoors this year due to a couple of showers that hit San Diego throughout the day.




























Mama’s Kitchen delivers three nutritional meals a day, seven days a week at no charge to men, women and children living with AIDS or cancer. Additionally, Mama’s Kitchen provides pantry services (Mama’s Pantry) and nutrition education to people affected by AIDS. Through these services, they are able to provide food, compassion and hope to over 1,400 people annually living throughout San Diego County.

Photos below by: Ana Pines

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015

Mama's Day 2015



Tercer Grado (Day Release) Interview with Director and Lead Actor

Interview with Tercer Grado (Day Release) actor Jesús Lloveras and director Geoffrey Cowper at the 22nd San Diego Film Festival. The festival goes from March 12-22nd showcasing top talent from around the world.

Tercer Grado Director and Lead Actor

Tercer Grado (Day Release) actor Jesús Lloveras and director Geoffrey Cowper at the 22nd San Diego Film Festival.

On his first weekend of parole after 5 years in prison, Mark Rodriguez witnesses the armed robbery of a security van. His brother’s critical situation and his own feelings of remorse will lead him to take desperate measures. His only help will be a young and sexy stripper he met the night before. This electric and grungy thriller paints a picture of desperation in a world devoid of hope.

Buy tickets

Monster Jam takes over Petco Park

Monster Jam takes over Petco Park

If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush this weekend you don’t want to miss out on Monster Jam at Petco Park. This Saturday’s all-star line-up includes World Finals champion powerhouses Grave Digger®, El Toro Loco®, Captain’s Curse® and Metal Mulisha; plus the San Diego debut truck appearances of FOX Sports 1™ Cleatus, Scooby-Doo™, Dragon, Doomsday; Monster Mutt® Rottweiler; War Wagon and Incinerator.  Another special performance will take place on Saturday, Jan. 31 with the return appearance (after 7-year hiatus from San Diego) of four-time World Finals Champion and Grave Digger Icon Dennis Anderson!

Monster Jam Trucks

Anderson’s sons, Adam and Ryan are also Monster Truck drivers. We got to speak to Ryan Anderson who’s been in the business for only five years. “My dad’s been doing it for 32 years now so I was born into it, I’m only 25 years old so I was in my crib on the way to shows and stuff like that.”  He says there’s no other choice for him because it’s in his blood. “I do this for a living and I love it and so far I’ve done pretty good at it.”

Ryan Anderson

This is the first time that the trucks take over Petco Park. Being in a new place means a new track and potentially more daring tricks. “You never know what to expect but I can guarantee its gonna be insane” Anderson assured us. You don’t have to be a fan or mechanically inclined to appreciate the show. You just have to like the thought of seeing a 10,000lb truck fly up 60ft in the air and potentially lose a tire, crash or catch on fire.

Monster Jam Preparations

There’s always something new to experience so whether you’re a long time fan or a Monster Truck newbie you’ll be equally pleased. Could this be the show where San Diego sees one of these Monsters do a back flip?  “I’m pretty sure its going to be the first time there’s gonna be some back flips attempts here, not going to promise anything but they are building a ramp that I think I might be able to try it off of but not gonna guarantee nothing like I said, I might not make it that far but if I do I’ll hit it whether it backflips or crashes or whatever, I’ll do it and everyone is going to get a kick out of it” teases Anderson. One thing is for sure after talking with Anderson, it’s all about providing the fans a memorable show.

Monster Jam

The show starts at 7 p.m. Saturday, but fans can get the celebration started early with the Pit Party at 2 p.m. Tickets range from $15 to $45. For more information, visit





Nothing Is As It Seems

ILLUSION lead image

By Kim Rescate and Ana Pines

San Diego is in for a special treat as the North American premiere spot for the travel exhibition, ILLUSION, on show at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center until Jan. 19, 2015. The exhibition was created by Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin and combines techniques used by magicians and explored by neuroscientists to uncover the many ways our minds are fooled by sensory deception.

ILLUSION is curated by psychologist, author and magician Richard Wiseman, and researched by deception artist Paul Gleeson. There are more than 20 installations that will distort your senses and mystify logical thinking. One of our favorites is, “YOU. HERE. NOW.” A dynamic portrait is created representing the viewer utilizing visual imagery from select news organizations on the web. You have to pause for a bit to allow the scanning of the local news Web sites before you notice your image emerge. Your image will be constructed with several tiny fragments that are in a continuous state of flux. Snap a pic with your camera and view it after. The experience of the exhibit will remind you that not everything is as it seems. Adjacent to the exhibition is the Illusion Playground, a collection of the Fleet’s hands-on, interactive exhibits. We attended the ILLUSION VIP Premiere Party May 8 where we got exclusive access to the exhibition and treated to a special performance by an illusionist along with food, drinks and music. For more information about this mind-bending new exhibition, visit

San Diego Comic-Con 2014

San Diego Comic-Con has come and gone. No more sleeping on the sidewalk to get into Hall H. Comic book Superhero’s will no longer be at your every turn. The long lines and aching feet will be forgotten as we reminisce and look through our photos and begin to anticipate Comic-Con 2015.