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Stories written by karenbilling

Celebratory 5K in Carmel Valley wraps up successful family summer running club season

The Solana Highlands School summer running club raced a 5K on Aug. 22. Photos/Karen Billing

The summer running club consisted of more than just Solana Highlands students — it included moms, dads, younger and older siblings, aunts and even one inspiring grandma, Alicia Gutierrez, a stage IV breast cancer survivor who barely missed a club session with her grandson Ryan Vincent.

Carmel Valley mom and panini food blogger’s first cookbook to be published in September

A panini press is one of the most common wedding registry gift items — a machine also known as a sandwich maker or griddle that heats food from the top and bottom.

Local resident to lead Summit 4 Stem Cell group on Himalayas hike to help fund Parkinson’s study

The Summit 4 Stem Cell group will conquer Mount Everest Base Camp to raise awareness and funds for a Parkinson’s disease study. Courtesy photo

The study is being done locally in San Diego, using non-embryonic stem cells and turning them into dopamine-producing neurons. The loss of dopamine production in the brain is the driving cause behind Parkinson’s disease.

Casa de Amistad program in Solana Beach needs volunteer tutors and mentors for upcoming school year

Students in Casa de Amistad’s summer program make zucchini bread. The Solana Beach program is now seeking volunteers for the school year. Photo/Karen Billing

Adults and high school students welcome

Carmel Valley photographer helping young women through Eating Disorder Project

Hanna Kluner 1: Photographer Hanna Kluner is working on a new project empowering women with eating disorders through photography. Courtesy photo

With her ED (Eating Disorder) Project, Kluner has photographed a group of young women she has worked with as a holistic health professional at the Eating Disorders Center of San Diego and helped them see themselves in a way they have never been able to before.

Carmel Valley planning board hears Grand Del Mar progress report on development violations

Initial violations occurred 10 years ago in 2003 with the construction of unauthorized golf course tee boxes in sensitive habitat. Last year more land-use violations were uncovered, including unauthorized grading, unathorized equestrian stable and trails, parking lots, a nightclub that operated without an alcohol permit, and constructing a helicopter-landing pad that was in violation of state, city and Federal Aviation Administration regulations.

Carmel Valley board asks for installation of VCalm sign on Via de la Valle

A VCalm sign is an electronic sign that flashes the speed a car is traveling.

Durante’s Menswear still going strong after three decades in Del Mar

Durante’s is celebrating 30 years in business in the Del Mar Village. Photo/Karen Billing

After 30 successful years in the menswear boutique business, one of the most common question Yvonne DiChiara fields is “Why did you pick men’s?”

Carmel Valley student wins title of Miss Pre-teen Majorette of North San Diego County 2013

Ashley Falls student Shireen Heidari was recently named Miss Pre-teen Majorette of North San Diego County 2013. Courtesy photo

Shireen, an 11-year-old fifth-grader at Ashley Falls, is talented and poised with a baton in hand, having started practicing the art of twirling when she was just 5 years old.

Local students receive Children’s Challenge awards from Del Mar-Solana Beach Optimist Club

Children’s Challenge Awards winners (back row): Yolanda Sun, Maxine Lacher, Katie Sheng, Avalon Moore; (front row): Chase Anichini, Maxwell Yao, Pranaya Malkani, Asher Petkevich, Tess Maretz and Faith Choe. Photo/Karen Billing

The 31st annual awards are named in honor of Optimist Vic Kops, who passed away in 2007. Kops developed the awards as a way to honor “kids in a league all their own” who are not honored enough for the good things that they do.

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