Here’s what was happening in Canyon Lake in the month of March over the past 45 years.
45 Years Ago
In March 1971, Don Martin was pictured in the Lighthouse Magazine officially transferring supervision of the Canyon Lake Campground to Bob and Marilyn Buus. On behalf of the Corona Land Company, Don had supervised the 106-space campground, located at what is now Holiday Harbor, for three years, but the Village Store and Martin’s Landing were taking more of his time.
It was noted that Corona Land Company had given an additional two and half acres for a campground expansion in another location of the new development. Construction on the new campground was planned in the next year, with the hope of adding another 100 camping spaces.
A new model home was being constructed to the right of the guard gate at the main entrance to the community. O’Brien and Cathro were the builders, and Amber Realty Company’s Fred Barillaro was to be the sales agent upon completion. O’Brien and Cathro also were building the new motel going in at the Canyon Lake Shopping Center (Towne Center).
40 Years Ago
In 1976, Don Martin, building chairman of the new Canyon Lake Community Church, was overseeing the first phase of construction on the Sorrel Lane site. Members of the original church council included Fred Hyde, Jerry Lee, Karl Spradling. Gordon Buchan, Rae Simonson and Jim Keeler.
Roadrunners Wagonmaster Clyde Carter announced the next trip would be to Bubbling Springs Park at Desert Hot Springs, stopping off for dinner at the San Gorgonio Inn on the way back.
Gas pumps installed at the POA office now enabled members to purchase three grades of fuel for their boats.
Chuck Bishop, customer representative for Woodward Homes, reported that his firm would build a home with “tile roof, fireplace and a dream kitchen on any level lot for as little as $34.400.”
The Ski Club’s Tom Nagle reported in the March Lighthouse Magazine that 73 skiers were towed on Polar Bear Day in 57-degree water, with the air temperature at an unusual high of 92 degrees. Vernon Gingrich was the organizer and the location was Lord’s Landing.
The POA’s fishing committee was authorized to purchase 1,000 catfish and another 2,500 red-ear sunfish fingerlings for the lake.
One could still rent a new three-bedroom, two-bath water view home for $350 a month, or lease a three-bedroom, three-bath home on the Main Lake for $450 a month. A turnkey waterfront home with a panoramic view of the lake was for sale for $67,900. Another waterfront house furnished with boat and dock was being offered at $64,000.
35 Years Ago
By 1981, Canyon Lake was growing, and the big news was the suit against the POA by the “Canyon Lake 1st Committee” over the “Land Purchase Agreement” between the POA and the Corona Land Company.
The Lakeside Facilities Committee members included Shirley Engler, Bill Denning, Ray Lewis, Mavis Kerr, Murray Ellis and Paul Morrison, who were active in checking that those owning docks followed POA rules and regulations. The ACC was busy noting problems with metal sheds, propane tanks and TV antennas as well as “For Sale” signs and other perceived violations of the gated community’s CC&Rs.
A two-day rainstorm flooded Newport Rd. between Sun City and Canyon Lake and was blamed for a series of accidents that caused several injuries and much damage.
Installation of grass and sprinklers at Gault Field was underway, with plans for the ball field to be in full operation for local baseball and softball teams.
The Lighthouse Magazine’s featured “Home of the Month” in March was a round house belonging to Mike and Carol Augustine and son Ryan. The house was located on Vacation Dr. near the North Causeway.
Diane Restad of the Canyon Lake Jr. Women’s Club reported that the next social function of the active group would be taking part in the annual Fiesta Day celebration with a booth and float.
A vacant lot at Tract 3716-443 on Bucktail could be purchased for $15,900; another at 3718-056 on Giant Fir was listed at $16,500, and property at 3716-244 on Cruise Circle could be had for $18,500. If a Grey Fox address was of interest, Tract and Lot 3778-222 was on sale for $95,000 with terms. A waterfront rental was available, furnished with a dock for $495 a month.
For those with a desire to take in a “Day at the Races,” the Travel Club offered members a $28 package that included a bus trip to Santa Anita, admission and a buffet lunch at the clubhouse and a return to the Lodge for a chicken dinner!
30 Years Ago
In March 1986, the POA Board tabled a resolution that would ban unlicensed golf cart drivers from using the community’s private streets and requested a ruling from the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Al Blalock was named as the Lodge’s new Food and Beverage Manager and promptly announced that his goal was to make the operation a success and “a place where property owners will want to eat because of choice rather than convenience.”
Prices for homes had increased over the years, and now a waterfront home with eastern exposure was being offered at $259,000.
The “Gandy Dancer” restaurant was in operation in the Towne Center on Railroad Canyon Rd., and the 5th annual Chili Cook-0ff was planned for April 26 at Indian Beach.
Local students of middle school age would be attending classes at the new Terra Cotta campus in September, it was announced by LEUSD officials.
The Security Department of the POA reported it would no longer conduct vacation patrols for Canyon Lake homeowners, on advice of Legal Counsel.
Residents were to be required to license dogs through the POA as well as the County with pets wearing a tag imprinted with “CLPOA” so the owners of loose dogs could be identified.
The Jr. Women’s Cub planned an Easter Parade at Indian Beach with a “parade of hats” to be judged for prizes, according to president Barbara King.
The Presidents Committee was planning to raise $3,400 to finance a fireworks show on the 4th of July.
25 Years Ago
A three-day downpour brought more than four inches of rain in the first week of March 1991. The tunnel under the Main Causeway became impassable because of the high water level, water flowed over the Main Causeway and North Causeway, causing them to be closed temporarily, and water spilled over the dam for several days.
Supporting the troops in Desert Storm was very much on the minds of patriotic residents in early 1991. Community members had lighted a special tree and decorated it with yellow ribbons, while residents were continuing to attach “yellow ribbon” messages to the tree in March.
The new City Council began a process to employ a City Manager for the county’s newest municipality. In the meantime, Kathy Bennett was hired to serve as City Clerk as the City’s first employee. It also took up the problem of parking on Railroad Canyon Rd., and chose LEAF to serve the animal control needs of Canyon Lake.
Six candidates tossed their hats into the ring for three positions on the POA Board. They were Ted Emard, Rich Hefner, Don Miller, Bill Schelb, Lori Ziegler and Walt Zollinger.
The POA was considering development of a ball diamond to Little League specifications at East Port, according to Director Ed Fair.
Mark Hartman, manager of Elinor’s at the Lodge, announced that a special all-you-could-eat beef ribs dinner with coleslaw and beans would be featured at $6.95.
Golfers and interested property owners clashed at POA meetings over proposed increases of golfing fees that would help diminish the subsidies borne by the Golf Course.
Slabs were poured to accommodate the new Post Office neighborhood boxes to be installed at various sites in the community.
A developer revealed plans to build a tract of 750 single-family homes in neighboring Quail Valley.
As of March 1, 1991 there were 3,626 total residences in Canyon Lake, with 2,542 owner-occupied, 391 leased and 86 rented on a month-to-month basis. Seven houses had been approved for construction so far that year, with 74 being built and another 74 classified as spec homes.
20 Years Ago
In March 1996, it was announced the POA Board had set the annual assessment at $1,302, an increase of $7.50 each month, according to POA President Tom Wysocki. The 1995-96 assessment was $1,212 per lot. This was the first increase in three years and was designated for Operations.
Dawn Haggerty, Pete Mortensen and Doug Warr announced their candidacy for the two openings on the POA Board.
The Association announced the grand opening of the new Holiday Harbor Park, and Phase One of improvements on East Port got under way with the installation of lighted basketball courts, parking and landscaping.
The POA Board authorized General Manager Bill Hallman to approve the purchase of aluminum bleachers for the Equestrian Arena. The POA Board authorized awarding a contract to Amato’s Pizza to operate the Country Club.
An Academy Awards party was held at the Lodge with participants asked to vote on their choices for Oscar recognition with special prizes for those picking the most winners.
The Home Owners Club hosted a Meet the Candidates TV night for those hoping to succeed Riverside County Supervisor Kay Ceniceros. Those taking part included Jim Hickman, Jim Hyatt, Jan Leja and Jim Venable.
Mark Hartman, who served the Lodge as executive chef for 18 years, retired to open his own restaurant in Oak Glen.
The City Council voted to contract with the Riverside County Sheriff to provide law enforcement services for the community.
Canyon Lake Community Church celebrated its 20th anniversary with a special commemoration ceremony honoring charter members of the congregation.
Howard Ziff was serenaded by the Choraleers and joined by many friends as he observed his 75th birthday.
Canyon Lake resident Sandy Healy, with the help LEAF officer Jean Voshall, rescued a barn owl that had been trapped in Sandy’s nine-inch diameter chimney flue for four days.
A story Pat Van Dyke wrote for Guideposts magazine about the Van Dykes’ miracle daughter, Mary, was reprinted in the March 8, 1996 issue of The Friday Flyer.
Bryan and Brett Geer and Howie Strech competed in the Southern California Boys State gymnastics championships. The Canyon Lake Teen Center held study nights on Mondays and encouraged Canyon Lake students to come in for tutoring.
Former professional football star O.J. Simpson was seen playing a round of golf in Canyon Lake to the dismay of many residents. (See a humorous story about this incident on Page B-2.)
As of March 1,1996, the community was 82 percent built with three new homes approved by the ACC so far that year. Of the 3,809 total residences, 2,748 were owner-occupied and 523 leased. There were 29 homes rented on a month-to-month basis and 122 spec homes were on record. There were 21 homes under construction and 948 vacant lots remaining.
15 Years Ago
In March 2001, the Canyon Lake Chamber of Commerce’s annual Scholarship Pageant honored 33 Canyon Lakers from the age of 4 to well over 21 who competed for monetary prizes as well as tiaras and titles. The new Royal Court included Braelyn Aguilar, Jena Maxwell, Amanda Johnson, Amy Owen, Sara Rhine, Pamela Evans and Charlotte Johnson.
Heavy rains postponed the scheduled groundbreaking ceremonies for the new Canyon Lake Middle and Cottonwood Canyon Elementary Schools.
The POA Board of Directors determined that the annual assessment per Canyon Lake lot for 2001-2002 would be $1,392.
Members of the Equestrian Committee appeared before the POA Board to request a new barn to replace the 30-year-old structure that then existed.
Marty Gibson, Suzie Kessler and Walt Zollinger were the only candidates to file for the three open seats on the POA Board of Directors.
Suggestions for a new lift station to be located at Indian Beach were proposed by the EVMWD.
Plans for the the 5th annual “Sport of Speed” event at Pepe’s Mexican Restaurant attracted a lot of local interest as famous race cars were to be displayed.
As of March1, 2001, there were a total of 4,078 residences in Canyon Lake, of which 3,286 were owner-occupied. There were an additional 396 leased homes and 12 rented on a month-to-month basis. There were 250 weekend homes and 133 spec houses. There were 52 homes under construction, and vacant lots numbered 636.
10 Years Ago
During the first week of March 2006, the City of Canyon Lake posted warning signs after substantial rainfall February 28 caused potentially contaminated runoff into the lake. The San Jacinto River overflowed its banks, bringing upstream waters through the North Ski Area and the Main Lake.
Five Canyon Lakers announced they would run for the POA Board of Directors. The two top vote-getters would serve two-year terms, while the individual coming in third would fulfill the one year left in the term of Director Bill Trembly, who resigned from the Board due to relocation. The candidates were Denise Jordan, Sue Moore, Marlowe Schaffner, Roger Windeler and Travis Montgomery.
Canyon Lake property owners were told their annual assessments would rise from $1,800 a year to $2,160 with the new fiscal year that would begin May 1.
Though Canyon Lake’s dredging process had experienced one setback after another, Operations Manager Paul Johnson announced the new de-watering bins would soon be arriving and the dredge crew would catch up and meet its schedule for dredging East Bay.
The Youth Action Council threw its annual Sadie Hawkins Senior Citizens Dance. Canyon Lake Community Church hosted a World Vision 30-Hour Famine, with approximately 150 young people from CLCC and other area churches giving up food for 30 hours to raise money for World Vision, a Christian relief organization dedicated to helping children and their communities worldwide.
Work at the Canyon Hills Marketplace caused some traffic delays as workers upgraded the signal light and added turning lanes for the shopping center, located at the intersection of Railroad Canyon Rd. and Canyon Hills Rd.
During the Fine Arts for Great Kids 3rd annual “Jazz and Jewels” dinner at the Diamond Club, Canyon Lakers Tom and Debbie Plant were named the 2006 “Arts Angels” for their support of children and arts education in Lake Elsinore.
The community was invited to participate in a 5K Run for Healthy Families, followed by the 2nd annual Jr. Olympics, both spearheaded by the Jr. Women’s Club.
Inga Loy was the Women’s Golf President’s Cup overall winner for 2006.
A ceremonial groundbreaking was held at the site of the Audie Murphy Ranch development March 15 and formally marked the start of construction for the 1,113-acre master planned community. Included in the project was to be the realignment of Newport Rd. and construction of a bridge over Salt Creek.
In March 2006, The Friday Flyer’s Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “16 Blocks,” “Running Scared,” “Failure to Launch,” “V for Vendetta” and “Inside Man.”
5 Years Ago
In March 2011, Canyon Lakers learned the Board of Directors approved a budget that would increase annual assessments from $2,460 to $2,640 – an increase of $15 monthly.
President Chuck Newsom, Treasurer Michelle Gordon and General Manager David Rudat met with Detective Tom Salisbury and Lt. Daniel Hedge to inquire as to the status of the Sheriff’s Department’s lengthy investigation of allegations, by others, of embezzlement and misuse of corporate funds. Detective Salisbury confirmed that the case had been classified as “Closed Unfounded” and provided the POA a copy of the reports for its files.
Steve Libring, chair of the Facilities Review Committee, presented the executive summary of the Pavement Management Program (PMP), created by Willdan Engineering.
Eight residents announced their candidacy for the POA Board of Directors. They were Steven Salazar, Janice O’Rourke, Bruce Yarbrough, George Middle, Dawn Haggerty, Sean McDonald, Lawrence Neigel and George Irvine.
The City Council voted unanimously at its March special meeting to give citizens of Canyon Lake the opportunity to vote on a Public Safety Tax in the June election. It would cost approximately $20,000 to put the special tax on the ballot to help fund police and fire/paramedic protection in Canyon Lake.
It was announced the Girls’ Water Polo team of Temescal Canyon High School, led by Coach Damien Andrews, captured its first CIF Southern Section title in program history with an 11-10 overtime victory against Bonita High School.
Dr. Vick Knight was the spelling master at the Gordon Keifer Memorial Spelling Bee, where Canyon Lake resident Michael Asafu-Adjaye, a 7th grader at Canyon Lake Middle was runner-up.
Canyon Lake Bosom Buddies sponsored a “Girls Night Out Martini Party – Shop, Wine and Dine” fundraiser at the Lodge. The event raised funds for Bosom Buddies’ efforts to support women and men diagnosed with breast cancer.
While some people were preparing for St. Patrick’s Day, there was another little known occasion celebrated around the world on Monday, March 14, known as “Pi Day.” Julie Lessley’s 6th grade math classes at Canyon Lake Middle School were among those who celebrated.
Canyon Lake Tennis Pro Baba Soysa was officially sworn in as a United States citizen on March 11. Friends celebrated with Baba that evening to congratulate him on his achievement.
Canyon Lakers were invited to the POA’s inaugural “Tour de Canyon Lake” bike ride and the Jr. Women’s Club Charity Golf Tournament.
Parents from Cottonwood Canyon and Tuscany Hills Elementary Schools teamed up with local businesswoman Judy Randle of The Cup Above to make sure art remains a vital part of their children’s curriculum by providing ceramics classes at their schools.
In March 2011, Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “Drive Angry 3D,” “The Adjustment Bureau,” “Battle: Los Angeles” and “Limitless.”
1 Year Ago
The big news coming out of the March CLPOA Board of Directors meeting was that annual dues would decrease by $48, or $4 per month. Many people also were happy to hear that the registration fee for non-motorized watercraft had been dropped from the Fee Schedule.
The CLPOA was waiting for a response from the Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District with regard to a February 18 notification asking for the return of $6,231,134, plus interest at the legal rate, that it believed EVMWD overcharged the CLPOA on the Lake Lease. Corporate Counsel Scott Levine told members the Association would put the March 15 lease payment into an escrow account while waiting for EVMWD’s response.
EVMWD officials then sent a notice to the Association stating it was in default after failing to make the payment of $344,303 that was due March 15. EVMWD’s attorney warned that failure to pay could lead to termination of the lease, with the possibility that members “may no longer be permitted as a matter of law and public policy to make recreational use of Canyon Lake.”
After getting EVMWD’s response, the CLPOA filed a lawsuit against EVMWD that seeks to clarify the rights and responsibilities of both parties should the lease terminate.
The City Council agreed to follow through on a campaign promise made by newly elected City Councilwoman Dawn Haggerty to investigate the possibility of Canyon Lake having its own police force to replace current contracts with the Sheriff’s Perris Station and Securitas Community Patrol.
Pastor Pete Van Dyke received special recognition at the annual Chamber of Commerce Awards dinner. Other honorees were Citizen of the Year LaRue McNamara, Volunteers of the Year Jill Batinich and Mike Shroyer, Student of the Year Justin Silva, Organizations of the Year: Jr. Women’s Club and Fiesta Day Committee, and Businesses of the Year: Canyon Lake Med Spa and The Cup Above.
There was major police activity in the Canyon Lake Towne Center on March 11, when investigators from Westminster arrested a prime suspect in a March 8 murder in Westminster. The suspect (Daniel Duvall, not a Canyon Lake resident) had been under surveillance at a house in Canyon Lake. He was a passenger in a vehicle that was followed to the Towne Center, where a full felony car stop was made with guns drawn.
A few days after that incident, BBVA Compass Bank in the Towne Center was robbed. A witness who was inside the bank said a person presented a note to the teller at the window next to him. The witness did not see a weapon.
After the robber and witness left the bank, bank officials called police and locked down the bank, and deputies cordoned off the parking lot in front of the bank. The robber was apprehended the same day in a nearby city.
Mayor Jordan Ehrenkranz announced that City Manager Keith Breskin had resigned and that Ariel Hall would be the Acting City Manager.
The Fine Arts Guild brought the Gary Bonner Singers to the Lodge for a Sunday matinee performance, “Best of Broadway and the Movies.”
For the first time in Temescal Canyon High School history, Girls Soccer won the CIF-Southern Section Division 6 Championship.
The Fitness and Triathlon Club sponsored the annual Tour de Canyon Lake bicycle ride and 5K run around the community.
Austin Powers and His Lovely Fembots made an appearance at the home of Lyne Hall for a pre-party leading up to the Woman’s Club’s “Swingin’ Sixties” Fashion Show.
Canyon Lakers Sara Price and Erica Sacks, aka “Teryx Girls,” began the nine-day, 1,300 kilometer (more than 800 miles) Rallye Aïcha des Gazelles across the Morocco desert. As co-pilots for Team Kawasaki IMG Motorsports, they were the first U.S. team to compete in the Motorbike/SSV class in the all women’s race.
In March 2014, Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “Focus,” “Chappie,” “Cinderella” and “Insurgent.”