News from the City of Carlsbad | Nov. 22, 2023
Joining you a day early this week to share tips for the upcoming holiday weekend along with some precautions you can take to stay healthy, safe and secure all season long:
- Slow down, watch for crowds
- Shopping safely in Carlsbad
- Small Business Saturday
- Introducing: Hike of the week
- A fresh start for old stuff at the Fixit Clinic
- Local animal shelters need your help
- Road construction projects around the city
- COVID-19 tests available for no charge
- City holiday schedule
Slow down, watch for crowds
Holiday weekends require extra caution for everyone using our roads. In addition to more people, there could also be more distractions, along with people visiting who are unfamiliar with local streets. Please model the kind of safe behaviors we have come to expect here in Carlsbad:
- Slow down. Even a 5 mph decrease in speed can reduce the chances of severe injuries and deaths on our roads.
- Stay focused. Put away the phone and be extra aware of your surroundings, especially in areas with lots of pedestrians.
- Share the road. More people may be out enjoying a bike ride over the holiday weekend. Please give them extra space and make sure to check twice before merging into a bike lane to make a turn.
- Do the Dutch reach. Parking will be at a premium this weekend, so if you’re parking along the street, check behind you before opening your car door.
Shopping safely in Carlsbad
This Friday marks the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season, so expect more traffic around our popular shopping areas. And, even though Carlsbad is one of the safest communities in the region, you still need to take common sense precautions, so you don’t inadvertently create an opportunity for crime:
5 ways to prevent crime if you’re shopping in person:
- Park in well-lit areas to minimize the risk of theft or vandalism.
- Avoid leaving valuable items visible in your car. Lock them in the trunk or take them with you.
- Always lock your car and take the keys. Check twice that it is locked — even if you’re planning to “just run into the store” quickly.
- Stay alert. Be aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded areas. Stay mindful of suspicious behavior and keep your belongings close.
- Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Use credit or debit cards, and only carry the cash you need. This minimizes losses if your wallet is lost or stolen.
3 ways to protect yourself if you’re shopping online:
- Check to see that the URLs start with “https,” meaning your personal information will be encrypted.
- Use a credit card, not a debit card.
- Check your credit card statements and bank statements regularly for unauthorized purchases.
Support Carlsbad businesses
Speaking of shopping, please support Carlsbad’s small business community on Small Business Saturday, Nov. 25, and every day.
- Shopping local is good for our economy, better for the environment and a great way to find unique holiday gifts.
- When you shop at small businesses, your money stays in the community, recirculating and fueling economic growth.
- Small businesses are the primary job creators in Carlsbad, employing a significant portion of our workforce.
- Small business owners take pride in providing exceptional customer service, offering a high level of attention and expertise.
- Small businesses often offer unique products and services that you won’t find elsewhere, adding to the diversity and vibrancy of our community.
- By supporting small businesses, you invest in the future of Carlsbad, creating a thriving and sustainable local economy.
The Village and other popular shopping areas are featuring special incentives, live music and other promotions to celebrate Small Business Saturday and get the holiday shopping season off to a festive start.
New feature: Trail of the week
Two of our community’s core values here in Carlsbad are a healthy outdoor lifestyle and natural open spaces. You can experience both on our 67+miles of trails. That’s why I am kicking off a new “trail of the week” feature, highlighting some of our lesser-known hikes and how to find them.
Whether you are having a staycation or welcoming friends and family from out of town this holiday weekend, you will enjoy the Rancho Carrillo Trail, nestled in and around the city’s Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park.
- I’m starting with this one because it’s a two-for-one-deal.
- That’s because it will also expose you to the gem of our parks system, a historical old California ranch once owned by actor and conservationist Leo Carrillo.
- Note, the park is closed Thursday and Friday for the holiday.
In this video you can hear a trail captain talk about some of the unique features of this trail, including the high likelihood of running across one of the many peafowl that call Carrillo Ranch home.
The trail is split into two parts, one loop on each side of Melrose Drive. The west part goes through the park. The trail surface is paved and unpaved, but the unpaved parts are still wheelchair and stroller friendly.
The terrain includes riparian woodland, freshwater marsh, Baccharis scrub and non-native grasslands. A seasonal creek within the drainage area of the open space corridor supports nesting habitat for birds like the California Gnatcatcher, and protective cover from predators like hawks, which you have a good chance of spotting overhead. Here is a guide with photos so you can identify plants and animals in Carlsbad.
To find out about other day hikes in Carlsbad, visit our GoHike Carlsbad Portal.
A fresh start for old stuff at the Fixit Clinic
Give new life to old clothes, bikes and non-working electronics at our holiday-themed Fixit Clinic set for Dec. 2.
This special clinic will include seasonal activities and demonstrations, along with two screenings of a documentary about a group of college students who banded together in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic to reduce food waste and address food insecurity.
Fixit Clinic – Saturday, Dec. 2 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Cole Library, 1250 Carlsbad Village Drive Register
The short documentary, “Abundance: The Farmlink Story,” will be screened at 10:30 and noon in the library’s community room. And as an added bonus, film director and Farmlink co-founder Owen Dubeck will be hosting a Q&A between the two screenings at 11:30 a.m.
At this holiday Fixit Clinic, you can also:
- Recycle holiday light strands and used household batteries
- Learn sustainable gift-wrapping techniques using repurposed fabric
- Create craft felt star decorations
The Fixit clinics are part of our effort to encourage sustainable practices, one of Carlsbad’s core community values and an important part of the City Council’s 5-Year Strategic Plan. ICYMI, in last week’s newsletter I shared some tips on how to reduce food waste this holiday season.
More COVID-19 tests available for no charge
As we all have learned by now, a few extra precautions can help keep everyone healthy during the holiday season, when cases of the flu, COVID and other contagious illnesses tend to increase.
- The federal government is making four additional COVID-19 tests available, per household.
- This is in addition to the four that were made available starting in September.
- If you haven’t claimed those first four, you’ll be prompted to do that when you make your order.
- Order online at COVIDTests.gov or call 1-800-232-0233 (TTY 1-888-720-7489)
The County of San Diego has also provided the city with free at-home COVID-19 tests, which we will begin to distribute Monday at Dove Library and the Senior Center. Test kits are limited to one per person while supplies last.
Local shelters need your help
The city partners with the San Diego Humane Society for animal control services, and they’ve asked us to share some information about illnesses spreading at its shelters and an urgent need for foster families.
- San Diego Humane Society is pausing owner surrenders of dogs, except in emergencies that threaten the health of the pet, due to occurrences of a respiratory disease called Streptococcus Equi subspecies Zooepidemicus (also known as Strep zoo) as well as a bacterial infection called Mycoplasma.
- The illness affecting dogs at the San Diego Humane Society is not the same illness that has been reported as a “mystery illness” affecting several states in recent weeks. Although that mystery illness was just recently discovered in California.
Because shelters are already operating over capacity, and to prevent the spread of disease, San Diego Humane Society campuses are:
- Limiting dog intake to stray animals through Dec. 1, 2023.
- Requesting that all relinquishments of other species be made by appointment only.
- Waiving reclaim fees for anyone picking up their lost dog through Dec. 1, 2023.
- Waiving adoption fees for all puppies and dogs through Dec. 1, 2023.
- Pleading with the community to temporarily foster a dog in hopes of getting at least 100 dogs out of the shelter as soon as possible.
Get more information by contacting the main San Diego Humane Society office in San Diego.
Construction projects around the city
Our crews don’t have any road work scheduled from now until Sunday night, but I wanted to remind you about our new map of major city construction projects that could impact traffic along your route next week.
The map shows major city construction projects that are planned. Utilities not run by the city, like electric and cable companies, also do construction on city streets, as do some private developers. So, while this isn’t everything, I hope it helps you know some of the major areas to be aware of, so you don’t get caught in construction traffic or detours.
Holiday city service schedule -City offices will be closed Thursday and Friday, in observance of Thanksgiving. A full holiday schedule for city services is listed below:
- Trash pick-up: Delayed one day, if your normal trash day is Thursday or Friday
- Emergency services: Regular service
- Alga Norte Aquatic Center: Closed Thursday and Friday (Instructional pool remains closed for repair)
- Monroe Street Pool (closed for maintenance)
- City libraries: Closed Thursday and Friday
- Cannon Art Gallery: Closed Thursday and Friday
- City sculpture garden: Closed Thursday and Friday
- Community centers: Closed Thursday and Friday
- Senior Center: Closed Thursday and Friday
- Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park: Closed Thursday and Friday
- No street sweeping on Thursday or Friday
- Transit: please visit gonctd.com or call 5-1-1.
Next City Council meeting
The next City Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 5. We’ll have the full agenda and staff reports available on the city’s website the Friday before.
Until then, on behalf of our entire team here at the City of Carlsbad, I wish you a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday.
I’ll be back next week with more updates as we head into the last month of 2023.
Scott Chadwick, City Manager
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