1 THE COOL-EVARD
El Cajon Boulevard has shifted in the last few years from being the boulevard of broken dreams to a vibrant stretch of cool new businesses. The evolution has been fostered by the El Cajon Business Improvement Association (ECBIA), which creates events that help promote the area.
The campaign continues on Friday, March 8, with Boulevard Nights, a semi-regular block party featuring art vendors, live music, good eats and an introduction to some of the highlights along the street. The upcoming installment serves as an after-party for the Latino Film Festival and, therefore, will feature awesome Latino-tinged elements.
The ECBIA's Beryl Forman tells CityBeat that the Media Arts Center will unveil its new micro-cinema and will screen two short Latino film staring at 6:30 p.m. There'll also be live sets by Tijuana bands Shantelle (8:30 p.m.) and Celofan (9:30 p.m.) along with vegan street tacos from True Kitchen Creatives and a sidewalk DJ set by Beto Perez.
"When the Media Arts Center moved to El Cajon Boulevard, it was a big win for us," Forman says. "It's such a large space and great about educating the community in media, arts and video. It's a nice place to hang out."
Since the Media Arts Center set up shop, unique businesses have moved in close by, like The Homebrewer and Coffee and Tea Collective. Together, these new establishments have aided in the overall change in the boulevard's reputation.
"I think once people come out and have good time, and walk into the businesses and really enjoy the atmosphere, they'll definitely have a different perspective on El Cajon Boulevard," Forman says. "I wanted to do something that draws in the community and showcases what's creative about the neighborhood. All in all, it's a great party!"
2 PARTY DOWN
You're currently holding in your hands the 2013 edition of CityBeat's Local Music Issue, the ultimate compendium of San Diego-centric music writing in all the land. To celebrate the release of this fantastic labor of love, we're throwing a Local Music Issue Party, and we've invited some rad local bands to play at The Griffin (1310 Morena Blvd. in Bay Park) on Thursday, March 7, starting at 8 p.m. Psych-rockers Wild Wild Wets, indie-popsters The Palace Ballroom and rock loonies Schitzophonics will perform. But don't miss Teenage Burritos, whose scruffy garage-pop tunes are so infectious that we declared them "EXTRASPECIALGOOD" in this issue's Great Demo Review. Oh, and if you got slammed in the Demo Review, don't be shy. We'd be happy to meet you. $6. thegriffinsd.com
3 STREET SCENES
Folks who've visited Tijuana and ventured beyond Avenida Revolucion know what a visually rich city it is, where street art—from simple promotional posters to elaborate graffiti— turns TJ into an evolving urban gallery. Photographer Jill Holslin captured these scenes for Tijuana Alley Art, photographing what she refers to as "that which remains"—vibrant, sometimes offthe-beaten-path graffiti that, given its transitory nature, may no longer exist as Holslin captured it with her camera (disclosure: Holslin's son is CityBeat's music editor). Check out her photographs along with wheat-paste art and paintings by Tijuana artists 1102, Panca and Spel Uno from 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, March 9, at Visual (3524 Adams Ave. in Normal Heights). TJ brewer Francisco Garcia will be serving his Teodora craft beer.