July 14, 2022
Happy birthday! To us! This weekend is the City of Carlsbad’s 70th birthday and as you read in our stories today, the city has much to celebrate as we reflect on a rich history full of arts and culture, exemplary leaders, programs and more. I look forward to what the next several decades hold, knowing we have an amazing and engaged community like you. Get all the details about:
- Supporting the arts downtown
- Honoring a Dove Library visionary
- Celebrating Carlsbad’s history (and our birthday!)
- TGIF Concert tips
- A superstar swimmer at 84
- A new city attorney
- How to save water and money
- Agricultural committee openings
- Teen Art Contest
- Upcoming city meetings
Partnering to grow the arts
As I mentioned last week, a unique partnership between the City of Carlsbad and New Village Arts that began more than 14 years ago and transformed an underutilized city building into an award-winning arts center has entered an exciting new phase.
On Thursday, city leaders joined New Village Arts to mark the official launch of a major renovation project for the downtown theater at 2787 State Street that will include exterior improvements, a larger lobby and gathering spaces, a new box office, safety upgrades, new lighting, new classroom space and more.
The project is another example of how promoting arts and culture is not just part of Carlsbad’s Community Vision, but it’s part of the city’s history, too.
Many longtime residents remember the downtown building as the old Bauer Lumber Store, which closed when the North County Transit District took over the surrounding land to build the Carlsbad Transit District. The city purchased the building and has leased it to New Village Arts since 2006, providing a low-cost home that allowed the nonprofit theater group to grow and thrive.
- Last year, the city awarded New Village Arts a 10-year lease, with up to two five-year extensions, paving the way for the theater group to launch a fundraising campaign and invest in upgrading the facility.
- The city is contributing nearly $900,000 to cover the exterior renovations, including the cost of rebuilding the outside walls, upgrading to a new HVAC system, and installing new solar panels, in keeping with our commitment to sustainability.
- Once the renovations are complete, the city’s Cultural Arts Department will commission a 97-foot wide by 16-foot-tall mural for the west-facing side of the building’s exterior. Everyone who visits the arts center or passes through the downtown Coaster station will be greeted by the new mural and be reminded of the pivotal role the arts play in Carlsbad.
- The mural and the New Village Arts renovation also support the city’s vision for identifying downtown as a dynamic arts and culture district.
Dove Library courtyard gets a new name
The courtyard at the Carlsbad City Library on Dove Lane will be named in honor of former Carlsbad City Council Member Ann Kulchin, the Carlsbad City Council decided Tuesday.
Kulchin, who served on the City Council for 32 years – from 1980 to 2012 – was a driving force behind the creation of the library, which opened in 1999. A former teacher, she was passionate about expanding library services and promoting the library as a hub for community gatherings, education and entertainment in south Carlsbad.
In her years on the council, Kulchin was also a leader in developing the city’s first growth management plan and the Carlsbad seawall, just a few of her many accomplishments. Still, she counts the library as her favorite project.
Kulchin’s family approached the city earlier this year with the naming proposal. A city policy allows naming city facilities after individuals who have made a significant contribution to the City of Carlsbad by enhancing the quality of life and well-being of the city and the people who live here.
Kulchin, who will celebrate her 90th birthday this month, attended Tuesday’s meeting and spoke briefly about the joy she found in serving the Carlsbad community. “You were my family for 32-and-a-half years, and I loved every minute of it,” she said. “Thank you for this honor.”
A sign will be installed in the courtyard in the coming months designating it as the Ann Kulchin Courtyard. Learn more.
Celebrating Carlsbad’s history
Speaking of people and events that helped shape our city, history is one of the core values that make up Carlsbad’s Community Vision. We have some great city resources devoted to preserving our city’s history and, with Carlsbad’s 70th birthday coming up Saturday, July 16, it’s the perfect time to check them out and learn more about our journey as a city.
- The Carlsbad History Collection at the Georgina Cole Library is a treasure trove of personal papers, city records, government reports and oral histories about the City of Carlsbad, as well as old high school yearbooks and newspaper archives on microfilm.
- You can also take a virtual historic tour of Carlsbad with our nifty map that highlights two dozen historic locations around town and gives a synopsis of each spot.
- The city’s Historic Preservation Commission advises the City Council and Planning Commission on anything related to identifying and protecting historic areas in the city. Meetings are streamed live on the city’s website.
- This video from our 50th birthday is full of historical photos and interviews with long-time city residents and former city officials who talk about:
- The dramatic events leading up to incorporation, including a competing effort by Oceanside to annex coastal Carlsbad that nearly passed. (It ended in a tie.)
- The narrow vote to incorporate, which was held on June 24, 1952. Carlsbad officially became a city on July 16, 1952, when the paperwork was filed with the California secretary of state.
- The formation of the city’s police department, fire department and Carlsbad Municipal Water District and other early challenges.
- Part 2 of the video covers the early growth and expansion of the city from the 1960s onward, including the creation of the city’s first library in 1967, the opening of the Plaza Camino Real mall and Car Country Carlsbad, the annexation of La Costa in 1972 and the city’s dynamic approach to planning and managing growth.
TGIF Concert reminders
Our TGIF Concerts in the Parks series continues this week at Poinsettia Community Park with a performance by Phat Cat Swinger, a fun swing band that brings a retro vibe to a wide variety of musical styles. We want everyone to have a great time, so if you’re planning to attend, please note this important info:
- Field will open at 4 p.m. Concert starts at 6 p.m.
- Consider getting dropped off or carpooling to ease traffic.
- You can park offsite at North Coast Calvary Chapel, 1330 Poinsettia Lane, and take our free shuttle to and from the concert location.
- The shuttle runs from 4:15 to 9:15 p.m.
- Don’t forget to pack a picnic – no food and drink vendors this season.
- Please leave your furry friends at home.
- Bring bug spray, just in case.
See the full TGIF schedule.
An inspiring Parks & Rec success story
As Parks & Recreation Month continues, we’re proud to share another inspiring story taking place right in our city. Anne Williams said she was the slowest swimmer in the slowest lane when she started doing laps at a City of Carlsbad pool 22 years ago. Today, at 84, she’s not only leading the lane, but setting national records.
Five days a week, Anne swims in the Masters Program at the city’s Alga Norte Aquatic Center. We’re excited to share Anne’s story as just one example of the thousands whose lives have been touched by our Parks & Rec programs.Watch our video about Anne and find the Parks & Rec program that speaks to you.
Carlsbad’s new City Attorney
The Carlsbad City Council announced Tuesday that Cindie McMahon will be Carlsbad’s next City Attorney, effective Aug. 2. McMahon, who currently serves as Assistant City Attorney, succeeds Celia Brewer, who announced her retirement in April.
The City Council voted to appoint McMahon in a closed session meeting July 12. The City Attorney is one of two positions appointed directly by the City Council. (The City Manager is the other.)
McMahon first joined the City of Carlsbad in 2000 as Deputy City Attorney, after having that same position in the City of Escondido from 1998 to 1999. From 2005 to 2019, she worked for the state of California’s appellate court, in the division covering San Diego and Imperial counties.
She returned to Carlsbad in 2019 as our Assistant City Attorney and for the past three years has worked with city departments and leadership on a variety of legal issues. She has also served as our Acting City Attorney when needed and has managed the city’s civil litigation, including determining legal strategies and representing the city in mediations and settlement conferences.
We’re thrilled to see her continue her excellent work as our next City Attorney. Congratulations, Cindie!
Saving on your water bills
July is Smart Irrigation Month! The Carlsbad Municipal Water District has compiled resources to make it easier for residents and businesses to save water, lower their water bills, prevent runoff and earn rebates.
- Residents can earn rebates by replacing their grass lawns with water wise plants or switching to a smart irrigation controller.
- Free water saving checkups are available to receive site-specific recommendations.
- A new outdoor watering schedule is in place.
- Even numbered addresses water on Monday, Thursday and Saturday.
- Odd-numbered addresses water on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.
- Apartments, condos and businesses water on Monday, Thursday and Saturday.
- Water between 6 p.m. and 10 a.m. on assigned days, for 10 minutes per station. Tip: Split that time to 5 minutes twice a day.
- Preventing runoff can save water and protect our stormwater system from pollutants. Fixing broken or blocked irrigation fixtures can help ensure sprinklers are watering the yard, not the sidewalk.
Serve on our agricultural advisory committee
If you’re looking for a simple way to serve our community, please consider applying for one of six open seats on a Carlsbad citizens advisory committee, which helps the city reinvest in its agricultural heritage.
The agricultural mitigation fee committee makes recommendations to the City Council on how to spend grant money that comes from fees the city collects when agricultural land is developed for other uses in the coastal zone. The grants support certain types of agricultural, coastal or wetland restoration projects that enhance quality of life in Carlsbad.
The committee typically meets once a year, so it’s a great option for people who have always wanted to serve on a city board or commission but don’t have a lot of time available.
How to apply
- The application process is easy; just fill out and submit the application on the city’s website.
- Members are appointed by the mayor, with input from the City Council.
- All members must be Carlsbad residents who are registered to vote in the city. They must also file a statement of economic interest with the City Clerk’s Office.
- Terms run through August 2025, or until all the grant funds have been allocated, whichever comes first.
- Applications are due by noon Friday, August 5.
Teen art contest
Know a teen artist who is feeling inspired this summer? From now until July 31, teens entering grades 7 to 12 are invited to participate in the library’s first ever Teen Art Show. The theme is “Read Beyond the Beaten Path” or “Outdoors.” Teens are welcome to submit up to two pieces that are no larger than 8.5″ x 11″.
- Submissions can include photographs, digital art, drawings, sketches, paintings, sculptures, etc.
- Art can be turned into the Information Desk at all three library locations. The art will be displayed and judged on Saturday, Aug. 6.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Get involved: Upcoming meetings
The next City Council meeting will take place Tuesday, July 19, starting at 5 p.m. in the City Council chamber. Topics scheduled to be discussed include:
- An update on the city’s investments
- Putting the second phase of the city’s street light replacement program out to bid
- Formally adopting a regional water management plan so that the Carlsbad Municipal Water District can apply for state grants
- Buying two apartments to continue to provide them as affordable housing units
- Accepting a state grant that will pay for specialized training for Police and Fire personnel
- Officially certifying the city’s June 2022 election results
- Giving up the city’s rights to public utilities easements on two residential properties
- Updating the city lifeguard and swimming instructor positions in the city’s contract with the state pension system
- An annual update from the organization that operates Carlsbad’s Sister City Program
- The results of a city employee-satisfaction survey
A link to the full agenda and staff reports will be available on the city’s website no later than Friday. You can watch the meeting live on the city’s website or cable TV channel.
These city meetings are also scheduled for next week.
- July 18, 5:30 p.m. – Parks & Recreation Commission
- July 20, 5 p.m. – Planning Commission
That wraps up this week’s news. Thanks for staying engaged and being a part of what makes Carlsbad such a great community!
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