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Ramona – a lot of stories

Helen Hunt Jackson, Mesa Grande Indians, San Diego Country Estates, Mt. Woodson, Ramona grasslands, Cedar Fire

The prejudice against Ramona and the bad energies of the place stem from the attempted Native repulsions of the invaders of 1769.
  • The prejudice against Ramona and the bad energies of the place stem from the attempted Native repulsions of the invaders of 1769.
  • Image by Robert Burroughs
  • Was Helen Hunt Jackson's Ramona real?

  • During late winter and early spring of every year, a bit of confusion reigns up north in the town of Ramona. The folks at the chamber of commerce there get a rash of long-distance phone calls and upwards of twenty-five letters a day — many of them with checks enclosed — from people all over the nation who want to buy tickets to the Ramona Outdoor Pageant, which they believe to be held each spring in the town of Ramona.
  • By Roger Anderson, Sept. 29, 1988

"Once I was at a dinner where I was given an award for Helen’s biography, and afterwards a woman told me she owned a chair in which the real Ramona had sat."

"Once I was at a dinner where I was given an award for Helen’s biography, and afterwards a woman told me she owned a chair in which the real Ramona had sat."

  • Ramona Then, Ramona Now

  • Monday, November 2, 1992. La Noche de las Velas. Can You Go Home Again?
  • I flew from Asheville, North Carolina, the town made famous by Thomas Wolfe's book You Can't Go Home Again and ancestral home of my maternal grandfather, Guy Clarke, of Scotslrish-Cherokee descent, to Los Angeles, then drove to Ramona, my hometown in northeastern San Diego County, arriving after 1:00 a.m., November 3, 1992 — Election Day!
  • By Sharon Doubiago, July 14, 1994

The author, Sharon Edens, 14. Out onto Main Street, against the wind, walking it like I used to, in bright light and flying eucalyptus.

The author, Sharon Edens, 14. Out onto Main Street, against the wind, walking it like I used to, in bright light and flying eucalyptus.

  • Ramona Then, Ramona Now, part 2

  • Friday, November 6, 1992 They
  • Pulling the shades to see the blue mountains. That they escaped there, into them.
  • That I didn’t know this before. That the core Mesa Grande Indians are the original Ramona Indians, that they are Iipai. That Ramona was Pamo, is “in the pamo," which means “bighorn sheep watering place.” Which means “a hole worn in the rock by water.”
  • By Sharon Doubiago, July 21, 1994

Mt. Woodson. The land set aside for the San Pasqual Indians...encompassed over 92,000 acres and included Ramona to the east. Mount Woodson to the south. Highland Valley on the west and Lake Wohlford to the north.

Mt. Woodson. The land set aside for the San Pasqual Indians...encompassed over 92,000 acres and included Ramona to the east. Mount Woodson to the south. Highland Valley on the west and Lake Wohlford to the north.

  • Ramona Then, Ramona Now, part 3

  • Monday, November 9, 1992
  • “San Diego Estates,” Mama says on the phone, “was zoned for 'second housing.’ They couldn’t zone it for regular housing because of no water — it was the only way they could get it through. It was a big laugh, building those huge homes. Ray Watts would come to the drive-in. I can see him now. Daddy and Ray had an affinity. He told him the whole story, how he was going to get San Diego Estates through lobbying.
  • By Sharon Doubiago, July 28, 1994

“I’m the one who did the deeds to Pamo Valley. The ‘No Growth’ bunch in Ramona Acres, in charge of the water, historic, and sewage district would have conniption if they knew.”

“I’m the one who did the deeds to Pamo Valley. The ‘No Growth’ bunch in Ramona Acres, in charge of the water, historic, and sewage district would have conniption if they knew.”

  • Ramona Then, Ramona Now, part 4

  • Thursday, November 12, 1992
  • The Ramona Sentinel comes out on Thursdays. Larry Littlefield’s sports page is impressive, both in the quality of writing and the depth of the coverage, but I wonder, how can he get away with some of the things he says? He reports an open rebellion of the players on the return bus from Escondido last week, after losing to “a team Ramona had beaten five straight years.”
  • By Sharon Doubiago, Aug. 4, 1994

Ramona Theater

Ramona Theater

  • Ramona Then, Ramona Now, part 5

  • Saturday, November 14, 1992. Mi hija Shawn’s 29th birthday.
  • [Ramon] traces for me the course of the underground river. It flows directly under your house he says. How can you tell? He becomes fierce like I've insulted him. I know! I know this land. I’ve slept over it. The river is enormous. I can hear water falling through granite hundreds of feet below. They shouldn’t bring water from the Colorado. It's wrong.
  • By Sharon Doubiago, Aug. 11, 1994
  • Stars gas station owner gets employees to burn his Ramona house

  • John Nesheiwat was parked in his car, a rosary on the seat beside him, about a mile from the North Woodson Drive rental home owned by James Kurtenbach, a 4000-square-foot luxury house in one of the few but posh golf-course communities next to Ramona. Minutes before, John had dropped off his younger brother Joe — an amiable 24-year-old, with short-cropped hair and an Arabic tattoo on his arm, who was about to do a big favor for Kurtenbach.
  • By Thomas Larson, Oct. 5, 2011

It took 30 firefighters several hours to put out the fire AT Kurtenbach’s home on North Woodson Drive.

It took 30 firefighters several hours to put out the fire AT Kurtenbach’s home on North Woodson Drive.

  • Roadblock History

  • San Diego — First it was a country/western restaurant and dance hall. When that failed, it became a biker restaurant called the Roadhouse. For the past year, the low white building on the west end of Ramona's main street has housed Sun Valley Charter High School. But come fall, "For Lease" signs may go up in the windows again.
  • By Ernie Grimm, June 19, 2003
  • Grassy Heaven

  • Broad, open grasslands in the topography of San Diego County are the exception to the norm, which is chaparral-covered mesas and barrancas. And most of the natural grasslands, Mission Valley for example, have been developed. Two notable exceptions are the plains northeast of Lake Henshaw and the Ramona grasslands west of the town of Ramona. And a recent purchase by the Nature Conservancy, a wildlife conservation group, will ensure that at least part of the latter stays undeveloped.
  • By Ernie Grimm, Dec. 18, 2003

Outside the Cagney ranch, the rest of the grassland is broken into plots as large as 1100 and 1600 acres possessed by only four or five longtime owners.

Outside the Cagney ranch, the rest of the grassland is broken into plots as large as 1100 and 1600 acres possessed by only four or five longtime owners.

  • Engineering a miracle

  • “I dreamed that we had a fountain on our roof,” she said. “We’d just push this button and out would come this spray of water, pssssssht, far up into the air and all over the house.” We both laughed at the idea. Ramona is a hot place, and for some reason our home’s little microclimate is a bit hotter still. We’ve seen 100 degrees in February and had highs in the 100s for a week straight.
  • By Joseph Mitchell, April 29, 2004
  • Way too many people live out here

  • Most of the countryside north of Ramona is still rugged and beautiful. Vaulting hills pull the view up toward the blue sky, wide valleys pull the view out toward the distant horizon, and a litter of boulders pops up periodically among the pervasive ground-covering green. But just outside downtown Ramona, a mile or two after Magnolia Avenue turns into Black Canyon Road, you turn left onto Stokes Road and head up into Rolling Hills Estates.
  • By Geoff Bouvier, July 23, 2008

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