Looking back at August of past years in CL


Here are a few of the people and events reported in the month of August over the past 40 years in Canyon Lake.

40 Years Ago

In 1975, it wasn’t unusual for equestrians to ride through the community and for golfers to enjoy a day on the wide open Golf Course.

In 1975, it wasn’t unusual for equestrians to ride through the community and for golfers to enjoy a day on the wide open Golf Course.

In August 1975, a club called the Canyon Lake Riders carried out a Gymkhana event at the Equestrian Center with participants from Murrieta and Lake Elsinore joining Canyon Lake’s horse fanciers.

Ruthe Lee, president of the Woman’s Club, thanked the Canyon Lake Choraleers for singing at the group’s annual installation. Louise Pierce was installed as president of the Women’s Golf Club and was to serve with a board consisting of Louise Ohlsen, Betty Halderman, Maxine Brandt, Faith Carter and Margaret Jones.

Tom Nagle reported that the Ski Club took part in the “Speed Ski Jamboree” at the Long Beach Marine Stadium and at the Nationals at Tomahawk, Wisconsin.

What was once known as the Canyon Lake Travel Club changed its name to the Canyon Lake Roadrunners, and announced plans to conduct a trip to the Caribbean in 1976. (The current Travel Club originated in March 1978.)

Luiggi’s Restaurant, located just outside the gate in Quail Valley, advertised a roast beef dinner (including soup or salad, potato, vegetable, buttered roll, coffee and dessert) for $2.85.

The Lions Club heard from the director of Riverside County Emergency Care at their regular meeting. The Home Owners Club hosted a meeting with representatives of the General Telephone Company to review progress on the installation of telephone lines in the private community with underground cables.

The POA Board announced that additional postal boxes would be installed near the Equestrian Center and the East Gate to accommodate a growing population. A “view lot” was offered for $5,900.

35 Years Ago

By August 1980, a waterfront lot on a “quiet East Bay cove” was advertised for $53,900, and a “golf course lot on No. 3 fairway” was offered at $29,500. In addition, a three-bedroom, two-bath home overlooking a quiet cove with 73 feet on the water and a dock was sold for $158,900.

The Little League team from Canyon Lake coached by Jerry McGlothlin, playing in the Elsinore Valley Little League, won the championship. Among those playing on the “Minor B” Astros, was Brian Boswell, Scott Hayes. Tommy Jandt, Rob Larson, Jeremy McGrath, Lance Roberts, Greg Southern, Travis Sutherland, Greg Torres and Doug and Kevin Wilson.

POA General Manager Jack McLean announced that vandalism to the community’s facilities was getting out of hand with wanton destruction of Campground property, restrooms and the Golf Course, costing members “a great deal of money.”

August 2 saw the dedication of Engine Company 60, Canyon Lake’s own station, with a dinner and a variety program featuring a band and dancing. Actor Burgess Meredith and Supervisor Norton Younglove were among special guests.

An outdoor concert featuring the March Air Force Band was held in front of the Lodge. Channel catfish were planted in the lake under the auspices of the new Lake Committee, with Bill Currey, Chet Felshaw, Floyd Smarr, Dave Martin and Don Pierce in charge of the operation.

Community activities involved numerous members of Canyon Lake’s younger set, including Corky Pigeon, James Valupek, Tod Lafferty and Jeremy McGrath.

The Lions Club had another busy year with numerous local activities involving sponsoring a Cub Scout troop, conducting a Student Speaker Contest, hosting two pancake breakfasts and hosting their annual White Cane Drive.

30 Years Ago

Pictured in the August 1985 Community News, volunteer firefighters Tony Fox, Harry Pahel, Mark Thomas and Steve Fox were among the proud members of Canyon Lake Fire Company 60.

Pictured in the August 1985 Community News, volunteer firefighters Tony Fox, Harry Pahel, Mark Thomas and Steve Fox were among the proud members of Canyon Lake Fire Company 60.

August 1985 saw Canyon Lake’s Engine Company 60’s volunteer firefighters planning their annual fundraising drive under the leadership of Harry Pahel. An article in the Community News said, “Of the 240 calls responded to by the volunteers through July 24, 125 were for medical emergencies, 21 were for vehicle, vegetation or structural fires, 9 were false alarms and 6 were stand-by. With Canyon Lake homes currently numbering more than 2,370, and property values in excess of one-half billion dollars, a contribution to the fire company might well be considered an investment in the security of the company, according to Canyon Lake’s volunteers.”

The fund to help pay for a traffic signal at the Main Gate and Railroad Canyon Rd. was increased with a check for $23,898, presented to POA President John Giardinelli by S.O.S. Fund Chairman Glen Foster. POA General Manager Bill Stewart was working with the County of Riverside to expedite construction of the signal.

New policies to ensure that local POA members had greater access to the Golf Course were announced for the Canyon Lake Country Club. Wording in the new policy included the following: “While this policy, in general, gives first priority to property owners and their guests, along with organized golfing activities, it also gives the golf professional the ability to book public group and individual play, needed to offset the operating costs and decrease loss subsidies paid through property owner assessments.”

A group of residents calling themselves the “Factfinders” and complaining about local activities circulated a newsletter outlining their charges, seemingly seeing conspiracies in local government, the communications process and even Canyon Lake’s Volunteer Fire Department.

King Videocable announced the replacement of the underground cable with a new satellite dish located near the Equestrian Center and North Gate. This was said to eliminate the problems of frequent power outages and defective portions of the existing cable along Highway 74. Tom Thomas of King Videocable also reported that a new half-hour weekly feature with local host Vick Knight would begin airing, spotlighting Canyon Lakers and other interesting valley residents.

The new Canyon Lake Public Library was scheduled to open, according to co-chairs of the Library Coordinating Committee, Ardis Underwood and Virginia Householder.

More meetings were held to discuss the pros and cons of potential incorporation of Canyon Lake into a freestanding city in Riverside County.

Home Owners Club President Mike Davis announced the candidates for the club’s board of directors and said the club’s September dinner meeting would be a buffet at the Lodge for $5.

The March Air Force Band entertained residents at the fourth annual military band concert organized by Rob Caveney, who first brought the band to Canyon Lake in 1982.

25 Years Ago

In August 1990, with cityhood a possibility for Canyon Lake, a series of forums were scheduled to provide voters with answers before December 1, when the election would be held.

With homes now being built overlooking Canyon Lake in Tuscany Hills, the POA proposed tightening security at the gates as well as perimeter fencing.

Marti Norris joined The Friday Flyer staff as photographer, and a contest was announced to name the restaurant at the renovated Lodge.

Nine Canyon Lake residents filed papers for the five positions on the new Canyon Lake City Council, should the incorporation prove successful. They were Annabelle Bates, Gene Bourbonnais, Ed Fair, John Giardinelli, Al Trembly, Jack Wamsley, Don Wicen, Howard Ziff and Walt Zollinger.

For the ninth consecutive year, the March Air Force Band presented a Concert in the Park at Indian Beach, sponsored by the Canyon Lake Home Owners Club.

A 795-unit housing development known as Canyon Heights was proposed for Quail Valley, to the north of Canyon Lake and along Goetz Rd.

A new Canyon Lake Yacht Club was formed with Lee Norris the commodore.

In the monthly ACC update, it was revealed there were 3,566 total residences in Canyon Lake, with 2,484 of these owner-occupied, 383 leased and 90 rented on a month-to-month basis. There were 515 weekenders and 64 spec homes. Only 993 of the 4,805 lots were vacant, and the community was 79 percent built with 130 homes under construction.

Pardee Construction Company announced plans to develop the vacant land to the southwest of Canyon Lake known as Cottonwood Hills. Two lanes of the expanded Railroad Canyon Rd. had been closed since March but this was expected to greatly improve travel between Canyon Lake and the I-15 corridor when completed.

Judge Vic Sarydarian was scheduled to moderate a forum on possible incorporation of the community. Nine recommendations of the POA’s Security Liaison Committee were to be announced at a special meeting.

20 Years Ago

Dr. Dave Long, superintendent of the Lake Elsinore Unified School District, hosted a “Youth Summit” at Blue Bird Hall to plan for the establishment of a Youth Council to help local youngsters plan activities and programs.

The 50th anniversary of the ending of World War II was celebrated with a “Victory Party” at the Lodge with a buffet dinner, memorabilia display, trivia contests and jitterbug competition. Rum and Coca Cola cocktails, popular during the war years, were sold for a bargain 75-cents.

Local residents John and Audrey Shaw and Gigi Paddock were featured in a musical program held at Indian Beach to benefit the Canyon Lake Community Theatre and Performing Arts Association.

With the arrival of new street signs for the gated community, the POA offered for sale the old wooden street markers at $20 each to residents with a feel for nostalgia.

As of August 1, 1995, Canyon Lake was 82 percent built with a total of 3,795 residences. Of these, 2,742 were owner-occupied, 502 leased and 33 rented on a month-to-month basis. There were 19 homes under construction, 418 weekend homes and 100 spec homes. At that time, vacant lots numbered 962.

The Southern California Gas Company conducted a survey to determine interest in providing natural gas service to Canyon Lake with the finding that such service was not feasible at the time.

Figure skater Cherice Van Lancker was a big winner on the ice in Houston, Texas. Local runner Ruth Wysocki, a Coldwell Banker associate, was invited to join the U.S. in the World Track and Field Championships in Sweden.

The 9th annual Kids Fishing Derby was once again scheduled for Indian Beach. Andrew Sheets, 9, and Katie Ellis, 5, were among those winning “Big Fish” awards.

15 Years Ago

In August 2000, Annie Lush, left, president of the Jr. Women’s Club, was pleased to receive a $500 check from Margaret McCoy and Jody Regus of Coldwell Banker toward funds the club was raising to build a playground at the new Lodge.

In August 2000, Annie Lush, left, president of the Jr. Women’s Club, was pleased to receive a $500 check from Margaret McCoy and Jody Regus of Coldwell Banker toward funds the club was raising to build a playground at the new Lodge.

In August 2000, property owners were looking forward to the reopening of the Canyon Lake Country Club following a period of repainting and other improvements.

The old Community Services building near the Main Gate was being transformed into a Senior Center, thanks to the efforts of a committee chaired by Ruthe Lee and joined by Yvonne Northrup, Bob Alexander, Ellen Iacono, Ron Marano, Rosalie Perrotte and Lou Smith.

Family Night was being held each Tuesday at Holiday Harbor, with DJ Mike Shroyer providing music, games and karaoke and the Jr. Women’s Club providing food, beverages, jump house, etc.

Local officials carried out a walk-through of the almost completed Canyon Lake Lodge. It was announced the new Lodge was on schedule to open in September. The Jr. Women’s Club was busy raising money for a new playground there. One of their fundraising efforts was a program that gave residents an opportunity to paint 6×6 tiles for the wall adjacent to the future playground.

Shade structures at Gault Field were made available through the generosity of residents like Bill Fodor Sr.

Unga Bunga was an unusual and popular store in the Canyon Lake Towne Center owned by Scott Alexander. This ad appeared in an August 2000 issue of The Friday Flyer.

Unga Bunga was an unusual and popular store in the Canyon Lake Towne Center owned by Scott Alexander. This ad appeared in an August 2000 issue of The Friday Flyer.

Water-skier Bill von Zabern was a winner at the Barefoot Regional Championships held in Elk Grove, California. Lindsey Trapp, skiing in Women’s Division 1, broke the jump record at Western Regional USA Water Ski Championships with her 121-foot jump. She also placed 1st in slalom, trick, jump and overall. Her brother, Ian Trapp, jumped 127 feet to capture 1st place in Boys Division 3.

Mavis Schaffner was elected to head the Canyon Lake Woman’s Club. Canyon Lake Community Theatre was preparing for its fall production of “Annie Get Your Gun.”

It was reported that Indian Beach would soon undergo major changes as EVMWD planned to install a new lift station there to accommodate increased needs. A Lift Station Committee was headed up by Jack Wamsley to bring the community’s concerns to EVMWD, and a meeting was held in August 2000 to explain changes associated with the controversial project.

As of August 1, there were 4,007 residences in Canyon Lake, of which 3,241 were owner-occupied, 394 leased and 11 rented on a month-to-month basis. There were 275 weekend homes and 118 spec homes, with 65 homes under construction and 654 vacant lots.

Candidates who pulled papers to run for City Council in the November election were Gene Bourbonnais, Frank Kessler, Jack Wamsley, Jesse Washington and John Zaitzt.

Temescal Canyon High School’s varsity football coach, Canyon Laker Bob Burt, was honored on KABC following Monday Night Football as “Southern California Coach of the Week” for his success and motivation of young athletes.

The 14th annual Kids Fishing Derby was another major success with record participation. The Home Owners Club was making preparations to host the annual Canyon Lake 10K Classic Run.

The interim Elsinore Middle School was being readied for temporary classrooms at the corner of Railroad Canyon Rd. and Cottonwood Hills Rd. until the new totally remodeled campus in Lake Elsinore could be completed. RTA announced that there would be bus transportation available for Canyon Lake students who lived beyond the minimum transportation distance.

10 Years Ago

In August 2005, family and friends held a golf cart rally in memory of Brian and Sharon Swanson, who lost their lives in a golf cart accident on the Main Causeway.

In August 2005, family and friends held a golf cart rally in memory of Brian and Sharon Swanson, who lost their lives in a golf cart accident on the Main Causeway.

On August 7, 2005 a memorial golf cart ride was held for Brian and Sharon Swanson, who lost their lives in a rollover golf cart accident on the Main Causeway the previous week. Memories of Brian and Sharon flowed for days as family and friends gathered to comfort one another and remember good times with the Swansons in Canyon Lake.

In response to concerns regarding the proliferation of street carts in Canyon Lake and the safety issues they present, the POA approved the formation of an ad hoc committee to study golf carts – both standard and modified – and to investigate changes that might be required to forestall accidents like the one that took the lives of Sharon and Brian Swanson.

Firefighters from both Company 60 in Canyon Lake and Company 94, located on Railroad Canyon Rd., responded to a fire at the home of Corrie and Patrick Tutt on Canyon Lake Dr. South. The fire gutted the garage, destroyed a parked Hummer and caused additional damage to the lakeside home.

Residents were invited to reminisce about where they were when WWII ended for a special feature being compiled for The Friday Flyer. The article highlighted personal accounts of where residents were when they heard the news on August 14, 1945, that Japan had surrendered and WWII was over.

Canyon Lake Community Theatre held a fundraiser at the Lodge in the tradition of a WWII South Pacific USO Dance.

A total of 309 children participated in the Canyon Lake Jr. Golf Clinic at the Canyon Lake Country Club. Each child, ages 4 to 17, enjoyed instruction Monday through Thursday, then participated in a one-or two-hole tournament on Friday.

Scott Larson won the Men’s 3 slalom title at the Goode National Water Ski Championships in Florida. At age 80, Jack Honberger was the most “senior” men’s skier at Nationals and won 1st place in slalom, trick and overall. In all, Canyon Lake skiers won 10 national medals for their performances.

Lee Arth competed in the U.S. Masters National Swimming Championships in Mission Viejo where 1,100 swimmers competed in various age groups. Lee swam in the 80 to 84 age group and placed 1st in several events.

A Chevy Silverado owner learned the hard way that even the biggest and strongest of trucks is no match for algae once traction is lost on the main launch ramp. The truck and trailer had to be towed from the water after being almost completely submerged. A few days later, another truck and trailer slid under the water at the main launch ramp.

At the other end of the community, a truck was pulled out of the lake about 35 feet away from the East Port launch ramp. It was determined the Chevy Tahoe had been stolen in Temecula in December 2004 and appeared to have been purposely submerged.

City Manager Bernard Strojny was the featured speaker at the August Chamber luncheon.

Coach Phil Cohen traded a lightning bolt for a lance as he left Temescal Canyon High School to become head football coach at the new Lakeside High School.

As a result of his untiring service on behalf of children and public education, the Lake Elsinore Unified Board of Trustees named the newest high school library on the Lakeside campus in honor of Dr. Vick Knight, Jr.

In August 2005, The Friday Flyer’s Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “Stealth,” “Dukes of Hazard,” “Raid,” “March of the Penguins” and “Red Eye.”

5 Years Ago

In August 2010, the City of Canyon Lake had a picnic to celebrate the 20th anniversary of incorporation as a city – one of several celebrations planned that year. The picnic took place at the Farmers Market in the Towne Center with the sale of 20-cent hotdogs (for 20 years of cityhood). The date Canyon Lake actually became a City was December 1, 1990.

Candidates for the two positions available on City Council were introduced at the picnic. They were were Richard Beck, Randy Bonner, incumbent Mary Craton and John Zaitz.

Former WWII prisoner of war Don George donated a POA/MIA flag to the City of Canyon Lake.

As of August 2010, there were 74 bank-owned properties, 3,343 owner occupied homes, 554 lessees, 93 spec homes, 375 weekenders and 294 vacant lots.

Two 18-year-olds and two 17-year-olds, three of them from Canyon Lake, were arrested for golf cart thefts in the community.

Both the eastbound and westbound lanes on Newport Rd. were scheduled to open fully by the first weekend in August. In addition, the County Board of Supervisors approved the bid process for the Phase 2 Goetz Rd. bridge portion of the project.

On the Road Project inside the community, traffic flow successfully was switched to the opposite side of the road, with Cooley Construction grading the road from Blue Bird Dr. to Vacation Dr.

It was announced 55 percent of Canyon Lake voters approved a benefit assessment on their property taxes for the Northwest Mosquito and Vector Control District to provide comprehensive, year-round mosquito, vector and disease control services.

Golf Pro Dave Lindeman reported that 182 children participated in the annual Jr. Golf Clinic.

YMCA preschoolers were enjoying water-play activities outside, as well as games, stories and crafts inside at Blue Bird Hall.

Canyon Lake native Krista Rogers, 23, daughter of Pat and Patti Rogers of Canyon Lake, won the 2010 USA Water Ski National Jump and Overall Champion titles for her division at the 68th Goode Water Ski National Championships in Wilmington, Illinois.

Canyon Lake resident Chad Graham, an 8th grader at Canyon Lake Middle School, was the winner of the Lucas Off Road Racing Series (LOORRS) Round 9 at Glen Helen Raceway.

School buses started rolling through the community’s streets, stopping at far fewer bus stops than they had in the past. According to LEUSD Transportation Supervisor Nancy Crouse, the district eliminated 25 stops, making the remaining stops “mega bus stops.”

Street Carts of Canyon Lake held a “Show and Shine” for custom golf carts at the last Taco Tuesday of summer.

In August 2010, Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “”Dinner for Schmucks,” “Joan Rivers,” “The Other Guys,” “The Expendables” and “The Switch.”

1 Year Ago

In August 2014, it was announced that Melissa Marquardt had won the title of National Champion in women's professional wakeboarding at the Nautique WWA National Championships.

In August 2014, it was announced that Melissa Marquardt had won the title of National Champion in women’s professional wakeboarding at the Nautique WWA National Championships.

In August 2014, Council members voted 4-1 to place the “Temporary Canyon Lake 911 Emergency Response, Local Control/Fiscal Accountability Measure” on the November ballot. As a “general tax,” a majority vote by Canyon Lake’s registered voters (50%+1) would be needed to impose the tax. Council members in favor of letting citizens vote on this measure were Randy Bonner, Mary Craton, Jordan Ehrenkranz and Nancy Horton. Voting no was Tim Brown.

Six citizens qualified to run for two available seats on City Council in the November election. They were Randy Bonner (incumbent), Dawn Haggerty, Vicki Warren and John Zaitz.

Just west of Canyon Lake, off Railroad Canyon Rd., Pardee was doing rough grading for its eighth and final phase in the Canyon Hills development.

The CLPOA Board of Directors saw a presentation by WEBB engineers for the proposed Main Gate redesign. This project had been under discussion for several years; but with the new design now in place, the Board was preparing to put the project out to bid. The Association explained that the goal of the project was to make entering and exiting the community more efficient and incorporate new RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology for better access control.

Beach-goers wondered about the big piles of green stuff on Canyon Lake’s beaches but soon learned the piles were the result of a project to remove the prickly leaves of the spiny-leaf naiad, an aquatic weed, with the use of a mechanical harvester.

Taco Tuesday crowds were wowed by a ski show presented by Canyon Lake’s own ShowCal Skiers.

Melissa Marquardt won the title of National Champion in women’s professional wakeboarding at the Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships.

A number of Canyon Lake’s top water-skiers participated in two major water-skiing events. To do so, they first had to qualify with tournament score averages that were measured against all other skiers in their division from all 50 states. Canyon Lake Ski Club members Kendra Nathan, 10, and Carol Brooks, 55, both took home medals in every event they participated in at both the Regional and National tournaments.

The Street Carts’ “Drive-in Movie Night” got rained out but other community events went on as planned last August. The Jr. Women’s Club hosted “Summer Splash.” The Bassmasters hosted the Kids Fishing Derby. The Fitness and Triathlon Club hosted the Paddle & Pedal Regatta. The Ski Club hosted Learn to Ski Day. The Wakeboard Club hosted Learn to Ride Day. And the Chamber of Commerce hosted the “Canyon Lake’s Got Talent Show.”

The Tennis Club hosted a Bingo fundraising event at the Lodge for Jimmie Aguilar, who was undergoing treatment for stage 4 tongue cancer.

Shannon Perkins and Dan Flick won the Bassmasters’ August night tournament with a five-fish limit of 22.38 pounds, anchored by Shannon’s 8.54-pound “Big Fish” for the tournament.

In August 2014, Reel People Ron and Leigh Martel reviewed “Lucy,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Into the Storm” and “When the Game Stands Tall.”




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Donna Ritchie