Photos By Sandra Small Photographer.

The Del Mar race track has fast horses, great crowds and lots of action, but it did not have anything on the August 15th open house, mixer and ribbon cutting at the new Courtyard by Marriot San Diego El Cajon located at 141 North Magnolia Avenue in El Cajon. The crowd entered and were greeted by our volunteers who escorted them to the “first turn” so they could register and begin their fast and furious “race.” This evening event was complete with delicious food items prepared and served by the Marriott staff. In addition to those offerings, Little Roma prepared their delicious lasagna and garlic bread to add to the evening fare. Mike of Little Roma was a gracious host as he served their famous lasagna and talked to our guests. Mike was joined by Chris Cather, owner of the Golden Spoon who was quite popular as he made fresh ice cream floats and served sundaes to the delight of all of the guests. What is better on a warm evening than fresh ice cream? The answer is – nothing!

Guests were treated to a silent auction that offered unique items that was added to the evening’s popular raffle. The lucky winner was Mireya Valdez of Dignity Memorial and the screams of joy were heard as her number was called. Congratulations Mireya! Guests were treated to tours of this new hotel and were thrilled at the room amenities featuring refrigerators and microwaves with complimentary wireless internet access, with 32-inch LCD televisions with cable programming and more. The pool area is gorgeous, along with the area downstairs which can hold a small gathering or meetings complete with Wi-Fi hook ups. The Chamber thanks the beverage partners for the evening: Cali Comfort BBQ, Curbside Eatery & Drinkery, Riviera Supper Club, Samuel Adams and Valley Farm Market. The ribbon cutting was a “Trifecta” as our photographer, Sandy Small “herded” attendees in front of the hotel for the memorable photo, thanks Sandy! Senator Joel Anderson sent his representative, Amy Daly to present a certificate of recognition to the hotel staff, which was joined by certificates from Congressman Duncan Hunter’s office, the City of La Mesa and the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce to commemorate this special occasion.

The La Mesa Chamber thanks the hospitality of this new hotel in east county and especially thanks the capable staff of the hotel. A “warm” thank you to the excellent staff of the Marriott, Rachel Lynch and Medina Poulain who made the evening so special – you ladies are wonderful! The Chamber would also like to thank the evening volunteers: Steve Browne, Laurel Cruz, Sandy Eggleton, Hope Hadsell, Athena Hernandez, Aaron Landeau, Renee Levine, Dave Lemox, Araceli Medina, David Smyle and Kerri-Ann Stidum.