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Isabel in San Dimas

Isabel in San Dimas

By Isabel Ebiner
Isabel in San Dimas is a podcast to spark conversations among neighbors about happenings in and around San Dimas. I am Isabel in San Dimas, and I am happy to be one of your neighbors.
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Local Author Dave Milbrandt Spills the Tea

Isabel in San Dimas

Mr. Gee Rocks a New Album
Known as Mr. G to his middle school students, teacher Steven Guiles is also an artist and musician, and he is creating a new album in his San Dimas home studio. Inspired and challenged by recent events, both global and personal, Steven has spent a lot of time reflecting, chatting, listening - and now making music - to make sense of it all. In this episode, we dive deep into Steven's musical background, his inspirations, and his latest project Transitions: A new album by Steven Wesley Guiles. Take a listen to this episode, and enjoy our first ever live musical recording on the show! Links + resources for this episode: New Cool Now Steven Wesley Guiles Kickstarter campaign for Transitions: A new album by Steven Wesley Guiles "Waiting For You" by New Cool Now "I Got to Go Pee" by Mr. Gee "Get Happy Lucky  Hearts" by Dove Pilot (featured on The Babysitters Club)
November 08, 2021
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at McKinley
McKinley is a local nonprofit organization based in San Dimas. Founded over 100 years ago as a residential facility for orphaned children, McKinley has grown in size and scope. The organization now serves diverse populations through a variety of services and programs. Listen to my interview with McKinley's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Liaison Bria Mason to learn more about the nonprofit and the good work that they do. Links for this episode: McKinley McKinley on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Bria Mason's contact information: Halloween Spooktacular: October 22-23, 2021 | Civic Center Park Nature Crawl: October 23, 2021| 3-6pm | San Dimas Canyon Nature Center, 1628 Sycamore Canyon Road, San Dimas
October 17, 2021
Secrets of the Masons
Dating back to Europe in the Middle Ages, freemasonry has a long history, seemingly shrouded in secrecy. And while you might find references to the masons in pop culture, they are very much a real organization, with a historical building right here in Old Town San Dimas. Past Master of the San Dimas Masonic Lodge and longtime San Dimas resident Raymond Foster joins me in this episode to explore the origins of the freemasons and their history in the city. If you're interested in learning about the masons, including how the organization originated and if they really do have a secret handshake, take a listen to this episode!
September 07, 2021
San Dimas Chamber of Commerce
The San Dimas Chamber of Commerce is the economic and business hub of our community. A nonprofit organization, the San Dimas Chamber started back in 1909 as the Board of Trade and served as the foundation for today's city of San Dimas. Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Chair Marilyn Sparks and CEO Silvia Melendez join me in this episode to talk all about the Chamber, including what services they offer, how they are a resource for local businesses, and what they do to enrich the community at large. Links + resources for this episode: San Dimas Chamber of Commerce Music in the Park: Wednesdays through July 28 | 7-9pm | Civic Center Park City of San Dimas 61st Birthday BBQ: August 7 | 5-9pm | Civic Center Park
July 26, 2021
Local Author Dave Milbrandt Spills the Tea
While I love to read, I do NOT like to write. Naturally, I admire anyone who has the creativity and the patience to put pen to paper and author an entire book! When I learned that Dave Milbrandt--a local resident, teacher, and author--had a new book, Fool's Luck, coming out in July, I invited him to chat. In this episode, Dave shares a little bit about his newest protagonist Myles Bradford as well as some thoughts about his writing process, inspiration, and more. Links + resources for this episode: San Dimas Music in the Park 2021: Wednesdays, June 16-July 28 | 7pm| Register here
June 14, 2021
Take Me Out to the Little League Game
San Dimas Little League President Geoff Charpentier and I discuss all things Little League in this episode. As a prospective parent and newbie to Little League, I ask Geoff how the league works, who can join, and how the community can support their efforts. If you played Little League or have kids who want to play in the not-too-distant future, take a listen to this episode and ball!
May 18, 2021
Water Bill Increases - Coming Soon
In a standard process that occurs every three years, Golden State Water Company proposed rate increases for 2022 through 2024. If approved, consumers in Region 3--which includes San Dimas-- would see an increase of approximately 23.5% to their monthly water bill over the next three years. In this episode, I explain Golden State's rationale for the rate increases, if the increases seem fair, and what you can do to make your voice heard. Information about water rates: Submit Public Comments for Golden State Rate Case No. 20-07-012 before May 25, 2021 2022-24 General Rate Case Fact Sheet, Golden State Water Company Golden State Water Company: 2016 General Rate Case, Public Advocates Office Golden State, city attorneys to go head-to-head in court, Claremont Courier 4/23/2015 Judge favors Golden State Water Company in fight for water system, Claremont Courier 11/11/2016 Water Issues in the City of Claremont, The League of Women Voters of the Claremont Area, 2005 California Alternate Rates for Water Program, Golden State Water Company San Dimas Customer Service Area Rebates and Programs, Golden State Water Company Additional links for this episode: City Council Passes Anti-Nepotism Policy, San Dimas Community Post 4/10/2021 Locations to pick up a copy of the San Dimas Community Post
May 04, 2021
Back to School for BUSD
After more than a year of distance learning, Bonita Unified School District elementary students will finally have the option to return to school for in-person learning two days per week starting April 5. Middle and high school students can return to campus on April 12. There is a lot to unpack and understand about school re-openings, so I invited Bonita Superintendent Carl Coles to talk about the ins and outs with me. I asked a lot of questions, and the Superintendent answered. Listen to this episode to learn more about what on-campus learning means for your family and children. Links + resources for this episode: State of the School District Address and Career and Technical Education Presentation School District Addresses COVID-19, Career and Technical Education Programs, San Dimas Community Post 3/15/21 City Manager Releases Statement Regarding Suspect in Park Stabbing, San Dimas Community Post 4/1/21 San Dimas City Council Study Session: April 8, 2021 | 6pm | Watch here | Join via Zoom | Call in (909) 394-6206
April 03, 2021
Building a More Bikeable San Dimas
A founding member of the La Verne Bicycle Coalition and local bike advocate, Doug Strange talks with me about cycling culture in San Dimas and surrounding areas, what a more bike-friendly city could look like, and what it would take to get more people out of their cars and on their bikes. As someone who loves biking but isn't the most confident rider around, this interview gave me a lot of hope and inspiration for riding my bike more in 2021. Biking resources: Four Types of Cyclists, Jennifer Dill, PhD Level of Traffic Stress - What It Means for Building Better Bike Networks Cycling Around La Verne Facebook group La Verne Bicycle Coalition website, Facebook page + Instagram page Gold Line Foothill Extension 2B First/Last Mile Plan, 6/20/2019 Arrow Highway Multimodal Regional Corridor Plan Additional links for this episode: San Dimas City Council Study Session: March, 23, 2021 | 5:30pm | Watch here | Join via Zoom San Dimas City Council Meeting: March 23, 2021 | 7pm | Watch here | Join via Zoom Isabel in San Dimas: Why Civic Engagement Matters Isabel in San Dimas: Should San Dimas Break Up with the Public Health Department? Isabel in San Dimas: Pioneer Square
March 21, 2021
How Changes in Via Verde Could Impact All of San Dimas (Again)
At the City Council meeting on March 9, the Council will--once again--consider changes to Via Verde could have potential impacts on all of San Dimas. The conversation hinges around increasing the amount of grading (or excavating or moving dirt around) allowed in Specific Plan 11, which comprises properties in the Via Verde Ridge Homeowners Association. The concerns from residents range from aesthetic, to environmental, to ethical. And the impacts of the Council's decision has the potential to impact communities all over San Dimas. Listen to this episode to hear how this issue could affect you. Resources + links for this episode: San Dimas City Council Meeting: March 9, 2021 | 7pm | Join via Zoom | Call in (909) 394-6206 | Watch here Grading Restrictions Stir Tensions between Via Verde Ridge Homeowners Association and Residents, San Dimas Community Post 1/19/2021 Isabel in San Dimas: Why Civic Engagement Matters San Dimas candidates spend moderately on March 3 election--so far, Daily Bulletin 2/25/2020 City of San Dimas Public Portal for Campaign Finance Disclosure Video of July 14, 2020 City Council Meeting (Grading discussion begins around 01:55:30) Video of September 22, 2020 City Council and Planning Commission Joint Study Session Bunny Trail Drive-Through: March 25-27
March 06, 2021
Should San Dimas Break Up with the Public Health Depatrment?
San Dimas has been exploring what it would take for the city to break off from the LA County Public Health Department to start our own or partner with other cities to establish a new health department. Despite the great expense associated with breaking away from the county, San Dimas is watching closely as the city of West Covina considers creating a regional health department from the ground up. In this episode, Shawn Granger sheds light on why West Covina is embarking on this monumental undertaking as well as what the potential benefits and costs would be. As a San Dimas resident, public administration doctoral student at the University of La Verne, and IT Manager for West Covina, Shawn's personal, professional, and academic interests intersect around this important topic. Links + resources for this episode: How much would a new L.A. city health department cost? $330 million, says budget analyst, Los Angeles Daily News 6/17/2013
February 22, 2021
True Way Cult, Circa 1997
Forensic psychologist Dr. Shiloh of the podcast L.A. Not So Confidential joins me as we uncover the story of God's Salvation Church, also known as Chen Tao or the True Way Cult, which called San Dimas home for a short time in the mid-1990's. The cult originated in Taiwan, and congregants believed they would be saved by God aboard a spaceship. As we explore this interesting bit of San Dimas history, Dr. Shiloh and I discuss what makes a cult, explore how cults work, and touch on some modern-day cults and conspiracy theories. Related media recommended by Dr. Shiloh: L.A. Not So Confidential: QAnon and the Psychology of Conspiracy Theories L.A. Not So Confidential: California Cults Die-Alogue: Rick Alan Ross | Cult Expert, Part 1 Die-Alogue: Rick Alan Ross | Cult Expert, Part 2 Die-Alogue: Janja Lalich, Cult Expert, Sociologist, Author Die-Alogue: Frank Lyford, Heaven's Gate Cult Survivor Die-Alogue: Female Persuasion: Women and Cults HBO's The Vow Links + resources for this episode Congregants Wait for Spaceship, Associated Press 12/23/1997 Chen Tao (True Way Cult), Wikipedia Taiwanese Group Prepares to Meet God--In Texas, The New York Times 3/4/1998 San Dimas City Council Study Session: February 9, 2021 | 5:30pm | Watch here San Dimas City Council Meeting: February 9, 2021 | 7pm | Watch here
February 07, 2021
Why Civic Engagement Matters
In this episode, I have a little "soapbox" moment and share my thoughts about why civic engagement matters--especially on the local level. Whether you volunteer with seniors, join a commission or advocate to improve the parking situation in your neighborhood, there are countless ways for you to get involved and make San Dimas an even better place to live! Links + resources for this episode Isabel in San Dimas: No Big Hotel Isabel in San Dimas: Pioneer Square City of San Dimas Agendas & Minutes Page Isabel in San Dimas: How to Speak at a City Council Meeting San Dimas Community Post San Dimas City Council Meeting: January 26, 2021 | 7pm | Watch here
January 25, 2021
Stay Well San Dimas
In this first episode of the new year, Angelica Hernandez of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence joins me to talk about the work her non-profit organization does to promote healthy living and prevent alcohol and drug use in communities. We talk about Stay Well San Dimas, a health-oriented coalition for local residents, and we dive into one of their current campaigns to reduce second-hand smoke and tobacco use in San Dimas and neighboring cities. Links + resources for this episode: Stay Well San Dimas Facebook page + Instagram page Angelica Hernandez's contact information: Stay Well San Dimas Community Coalition meeting: January 26 | 3pm State of Tobacco Control 2020, California Local Grades, American Lung Association San Dimas City Council Meeting: January 12, 2021 | 7pm | Watch here | Join via Zoom Isabel in San Dimas: What is the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium? San Dimas Community Post
January 11, 2021
Wish Upon a Toy
We all need a little bit of hope this 2020 holiday season, so I decided to do a series featuring local non-profit organizations doing good work. For this first episode, I interview Ryan Russek, founder of Wish Upon a Toy, a non-profit that delivers gifts on Christmas Day to cancer patients at the City of Hope. The idea for Wish Upon a Toy started when Ryan and his father, a cancer patient himself, decided to deliver Christmas gifts to the pediatric patients at City of Hope. Ryan's dad lost his battle to cancer on Christmas Day 2005, but his legacy lives on in the joy that Wish Upon a Toy delivers every year. Links + resources for this episode Wish Upon a Toy 12 Days of San Dimas San Dimas City Council Meeting: December 8, 2020 | 7pm | Watch here Parks and Recreation Commission Vacancy Isabel in San Dimas: What is the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium? Isabel in San Dimas: "Crown of the Citrus Belt" GoFundMe: Support Andrea, Lizzie and Ernest Spark of Joy: Accepting donations at Los Angeles County Fire Department Station 64 | 164 S. Walnut Ave.
December 07, 2020
Will San Dimas Build Low-Income Housing?
My husband Phil Ebiner joins me on the show today to talk about his participation in the City of San Dimas Housing Element Subcommittee. San Dimas is going through a Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA), a state-mandated process to zone for additional housing. Because of RHNA, you may have heard rumors that low-income and high-density housing are coming to town. My husband Phil Ebiner, who is a member of the Housing Element Subcommittee as part of the RHNA process, joins me to confirm some facts and dispel some myths around housing in San Dimas. Listen to this episode to learn more about what the Subcommittee is working on and what housing may look like in San Dimas in the not-too-distant future. And don’t forget to complete the City’s Housing Element Survey to make sure your voice is heard! Links + resources for this episode: San Dimas Housing Element Survey California Department of Housing and Community Development Southern California Association of Governments City of San Dimas Demographics City of San Dimas Housing Element 2014-2021
November 23, 2020
"Skatepark Mom" Talks San Dimas Skate Culture
A lifelong San Dimas resident, 23-year-old Savannah Spillman discovered San Dimas's very own skatepark just three years ago when she started learning how to skateboard. In that short time, Savannah fostered a sense of community among the skating youth, became known as "Skatepark Mom," and submitted a proposal to the City Council and Parks and Recreation Commission to improve lighting and safety at the skatepark. Listen to this episode to learn more about skate culture in San Dimas and hear some sage advice that may even inspire you to pick up a skateboard.
November 09, 2020
How Via Verde Zoning Changes Could Impact All of San Dimas
At a joint study session on October 13, 2020, the City Council and Planning Commission will consider zoning changes in Via Verde that could have potential impacts on all of San Dimas. The conversation hinges around increasing the amount of grading (or excavating) allowed in Specific Plan 11, which comprises properties in the Via Verde Ridge Homeowners Association. The concerns from residents range from aesthetic, to environmental, to ethical. Listen to this episode to hear how this issue could affect you.
October 12, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: Peter Hidalgo
Peter Hidalgo is running for the Mt. San Antonio College Board of Trustee position for Area 1, which covers San Dimas. Born in Ecuador and raised by a single mother, a young Peter had aspirations to manage a KFC location until a $100 scholarship to attend Mt. SAC changed the trajectory of his life. Listen to my interview with Peter, get a sense of what his vision for the community college is, and learn why this race should matter to San Dimas. Learn more about Peter Hidalgo by visiting his official campaign website.
October 05, 2020
The Urban Forest
I recently became a member of the City of San Dimas's Urban Forest Sub-Committee. Part of my role as a Sub-Committee member is to help provide education and outreach about San Dimas's Urban Forest, which is basically all of the public and community trees that you see here in our city. In this episode, I provide information about the overall benefits of trees in any community, details about San Dimas's trees in particular, and tips about how to take care of your trees.   Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
September 21, 2020
Gilead and the Price of Life-Saving Drugs
When COVID-19 first hit in early 2020, I was intrigued that several big companies working to fight the pandemic had offices here in sleepy San Dimas. I reached out to Gilead Sciences for a podcast interview but never heard back. Later on in July, I learned that San Dimas resident Keith Buck had been conducting a one-man protest at Gilead over their sky-high prices for remdesivir, a life-saving drug used to treat the novel coronavirus. In today's episode, I interview my neighbor Keith about Gilead's exorbitant profit margins and why Keith felt it was important to take a stand on this issue.   Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
September 07, 2020
Bill & Ted's Excellent Finale
Bill & Ted Face the Music, the third movie in the Bill & Ted series, is set to come out in August 2020. With all the hype around this newest installment--set in none other than our small town of San Dimas--I thought it would be fun to revisit the original Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure and explore what's to come in the new film later this year. I ask experts Kelly Bolick and Jason Meares, hosts of the most excellent Bill & Ted podcast San Dimas Today, to shed light on this iconic trilogy. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
August 24, 2020
Bonelli Park R11 Parkway Closure
When the Covid-19 closures began back in March 2020, the County of Los Angeles required Bonelli Bluffs RV Park to close as well. This led to a temporary closure of what is known as the R11 Walkway, which allowed members of the public to complete an uninterrupted loop around Puddingstone Lake at Bonelli Park. Since March, that temporary closure became permanent, upsetting hundreds of local residents and users of the path. In this episode, I speak with Crystal DeMott, a San Dimas resident who reached out to Bonelli Bluffs and the County. Listen to this episode to learn how she used her voice and how the necessary stakeholders are now working toward a resolution to benefit all parties involved.
August 10, 2020
The Power of Local Journalism
In this episode, I talk with San Dimas resident and design director for TheLAnd Magazine Evan Solano. A former page designer for the Southern California News Group and Editor-in-Chief of the Citrus College Clarion newspaper, Evan has a background in journalism. We chat about our mutual love for local news as well as the recent struggles of local journalism. Listen to the episode now to hear more about the important role local journalism plays in communities everywhere.
July 27, 2020
Black Lives Matter: A Family Affair
In this episode, I talk with Crystal Jones Bacon and Chloe Jones, San Dimas residents who organized a rally in front of City Hall on June 23, in support of Councilmember Ebiner's resolution denouncing George Floyd's death, systemic racism, and police brutality. This mother-daughter duo share about what Black Lives Matter means to them, why they got involved in San Dimas, and what they learned about civic engagement locally.
July 13, 2020
Why I Am Still Hopeful
At the San Dimas City Council meeting on June 23, 2020, members of the community showed up in large numbers to support a resolution by Councilmember Ebiner condemning the death of George Floyd, racism, and injustice. Despite this overwhelming support, Councilmember Ebiner's resolution failed, and a resolution that the public had no opportunity to comment on was adopted. What's more: Councilmember Vienna, visibly disappointed in the entire process, publicly berated Councilmember Ebiner, me, our family, and other engaged members of the community. In this episode, I reflect on what happened at this most recent City Council meeting, how it affected me, and why I am still hopeful that change for the better is possible. Nos quisieron enterrar, pero no sabían que éramos semillas.
June 29, 2020
Locally Owned: United Yoga Studio
In this episode, I speak with United Yoga Studio founder and owner Michelle Pasos. Michelle talks about the origin and mission of the studio, which aims to be inclusive of all people in their yoga journey. She also speaks to the importance of practicing self-care, especially when times are tough, and yoga is one way to take care of one's mind, body, and heart. Michelle reaches out to the United Yoga family and local community to support local businesses like hers as they struggle to stay open due to the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more about and support United Yoga Studio by visiting their website and YouTube channel.
June 15, 2020
Graduating Class of Covid-19
In a time when a global pandemic has impacted all aspects of life around the world, students everywhere have had to adapt to school closures and online learning. This time has been particularly challenging for graduates, who deserve to be acknowledged and celebrated, but are unable to commemorate this special time with traditional graduation ceremonies. In this week's show, San Dimas residents and high school seniors Andrea and Chris reflect with me on their final semester and how the community around them is rallying to celebrate this major accomplishment.
June 01, 2020
How to Speak at a City Council Meeting
Since launching the No Big Hotel effort and this podcast, I have encouraged friends, neighbors, and listeners to speak at City Council meetings to have their voice heard. But public speaking does not come easily for everyone--sometimes people tell me they feel shy or intimidated or simply unsure of what to say. In this episode, I give you some tips from my own experience of speaking at City Council meetings that will hopefully give you the knowledge and confidence you need to stand up for what matters to you. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
May 18, 2020
A Conversation with Isabel
My husband Phil and I may have had a little too much fun making this episode. Today, the tables are turned, and I am the one being interviewed! Get to know me--your neighbor Isabel--and what I love about San Dimas. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
May 04, 2020
True Crime San Dimas: Constable Funkhouser's Unsolved Murder, 1922
In this episode, I collaborate with Dr. Shiloh--a forensic psychologist, podcast host of L.A. Not So Confidential, and San Dimas native--to share the story and honor the memory of Constable W.E. Funkhouser, an old-time San Dimas hero. Constable Funkhouser gave his life while attempting to apprehend a burglar along the Santa Fe railroad in 1922. Join us as we uncover this interesting piece of San Dimas history. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
April 20, 2020
San Dimas Experimental Forest
Established in 1933, the San Dimas Experimental Forest, which consists of 17,000 acres just north of Glendora, San Dimas, La Verne, and Claremont, seems to be a mystery to most local residents. Thanks to my conversation with US Forest Service Physical Scientist Pete Wohlgemuth, this episode attempts to shed light on the history of the forest as well as some of the important research that has been conducted right here in our own backyard. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
April 06, 2020
Locally Owned: Palermo Cafe and Bakery
Listen to this episode, featuring an interview with Le Cordon Bleu-trained baker and co-owner of Palermo Cafe and Bakery Joseph Durkan. Joseph shares the story of why he and his fiancé Nhancye D'Angelo came to revive the original D'Angelo family-owned bakery and how they came to find a new "home" for the bakery in Via Verde in 2019. Using old traditional recipes infused with modern techniques, the Palermo Cafe and Bakery reboot in San Dimas is a modern twist on traditions of the past. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
March 23, 2020
A Moment of Pause
In light of recent events, I made a last-minute change to my plans for today's episode to say a word about the current coronavirus pandemic. As you know, I am not a medical professional nor am I an expert. I am simply a member of the community sharing my thoughts on how the threat of the virus impacts my family and how I witness the kindness and resilience of the human spirit during this challenging time. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
March 16, 2020
"Crown of the Citrus Belt"
The 1900's through the 1920's was the peak of the citrus industry in San Dimas. The city produced massive amounts of citrus and supposedly housed the largest lemon packing house in the world. San Dimas was nicknamed the "Crown of the Citrus Belt" and was considered the world's citrus capital. In this episode, I share some of my research and an enlightening conversation with lifelong San Dimas resident Dave Harbin. Dave recalls some childhood memories of the packing houses and family stories of the hard work of smudging, and we talk about the early citrus industry that put San Dimas on the map. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
March 09, 2020
San Dimas March 2020 Election: A Recap
When most of the candidates for City Council and Mayor share the same priorities of "public safety" and "quality of life", it can be hard to tell what really sets each person apart. In this last week before the election, I thought it would be helpful to do a quick summary of all the candidates, recapping the major issues and characteristics that I believe make each one stand out. I also briefly review the arguments for and against the sales tax Measure SD. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
February 24, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: John Ebiner
In this fifth and final interview of my candidate series, I talk with incumbent Councilmember John Ebiner. John talks about his accomplishments during his time on the City Council, as well as his goals and ideas for the future direction of San Dimas. The Councilmember reiterates his priorities of maintaining a high quality of life for residents, protecting historic neighborhoods from overdevelopment, and preserving open space. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
February 17, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: Emma Ramirez
The next episode in my series of interviews features Emma Ramirez, a retired LAPD detective sergeant and current San Dimas Public Safety Commissioner. Emma is a long-time resident, small business owner, and single mom who raised her two sons in San Dimas. Emma describes her campaign for City Council as part of her lifelong commitment to public service. Issues important to Emma include preparing for the Gold Line station, revitalizing downtown, and bringing City Hall to the community. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
February 10, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: Nichole Gonzales
In today's episode, I interview San Dimas City Council candidate Nichole Gonzales. Nichole is a married, working mother holding a senior role at a global humanitarian nonprofit. Her motivation to run for City Council comes from her desire to listen to and be a voice for the community. With the impending Gold Line station and recent state legislation, Nichole believes in historical preservation, responsible development, and community revitalization. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
February 03, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: David Estrada
I interview David Estrada as part of my series of interviews with candidates for San Dimas City Council and Mayor. David has been a proud labor leader his entire professional career and a strong advocate for mental health issues. David expresses his concerns about California's state government limiting local control and his hope that San Dimas can collaborate with our neighbors to stand up to Sacramento. He also shares his views on local issues like public safety, revitalizing business in town, and the upcoming sales tax on the ballot. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
January 27, 2020
Candidate Spotlight: Eric Weber
Starting this week, I launch a series of interviews with candidates for San Dimas City Council and Mayor. In this episode, I interview Eric Weber, a San Dimas Public Safety Commissioner and Police Detective with over 12 years of law enforcement experience. He shares how his desire to be involved in the community and interest in public safety led him to run for City Council. Eric believes his professional expertise will be an asset when planning for the new Gold Line station. He also shares about his ideas for downtown San Dimas, as well as his views about the sales tax measure on the ballot. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
January 20, 2020
What is the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium?
If you live in downtown San Dimas, you may have received information about a community meeting on January 15 regarding the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium. But--what exactly is the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium, and why should you care? In the fall of 2019, the San Dimas City Council approved an emergency moratorium, or pause, on any new or existing developments for three commercial properties, which have the potential to significantly impact (either positively or negatively) the nearby neighborhoods and downtown. In this week's episode, I attempt to simplify this extremely important issue for downtown San Dimas residents, property owners, prospective buyers, and anyone else who cares about our historic downtown. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
January 13, 2020
Traffic Safety Around Schools
Have you ever driven by a school during peak pick-up or drop-off times? Try living near one! For this first episode of the new year, I meet with San Dimas resident Lysa Takacs, who lives walking distance from Allen Avenue Elementary, and Allen Avenue Elementary Principal Debbie Grenier. While Lysa knew living close to the school might bring some unique challenges, Lysa shares about how the problem has worsened over time and some potential solutions she has in mind. Both Lysa and Principal Grenier agree that safety for the students, parents, and neighbors needs to be a priority. And perhaps, as a New Year's resolution, we could all be a little more respectful and considerate of our neighbors. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
January 06, 2020
The Historic Walker House
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!! As a little holiday gift to you, this week's episode explores the history and charm behind San Dimas's iconic Walker House. I chat with Susan Davis, the archivist and museum manager for the Historical Society, who shares some little-known stories and fun facts about the historic home. If you haven't been to the Walker House, I highly recommend a visit! If you are interested in visiting, volunteering, or becoming a member, check out the San Dimas Historical Society website for more information. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
December 23, 2019
New Graffiti Hotline
As of October 1, 2019, the new San Dimas Graffiti Hotline is (909) 542-2500. The City is working with a new company, Urban Graffiti Enterprises, Inc., for graffiti abatement services. The new process is meant to be streamlined, with Urban Graffiti providing reports to the City, which will then share that information with the Sheriff's department. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
December 16, 2019
Pioneer Square
At the San Dimas City Council meeting on December 10, 2019, the Council will review proposals from three developers for the vacant Bonita/Cataract lot. Listen to this episode as I share about my personal experience with one of those developers, Creative Housing Associates, and their unique plan for Pioneer Square in downtown San Dimas. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
December 07, 2019
Salon Dimas
Have you ever wondered why there are so many salons in San Dimas? Do you wish downtown San Dimas offered more diverse businesses? Do you feel like you are always leaving San Dimas to dine and shop in nearby cities? You are not alone! This week, I interview Jaymes Dunsmore, an AICP-certified planner and urban designer. Jaymes talks with me about why businesses such as salons might thrive in a place like San Dimas. Also, given the historic nature of downtown San Dimas, Jaymes explains some of the challenges and potential solutions for transforming ours into a more vibrant and revitalized downtown. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
December 02, 2019
Sales Tax on the March 2020 Ballot
On November 12, 2019, the City Council unanimously voted 5-0 to add a proposed 0.75% sales tax increase on the March 2020 ballot. Historically, the City has been very fiscally conservative with healthy reserves, so why did the Council put this measure on the ballot? Listen to this episode to get more information about the City's rationale behind the decision as well as details about what the sales tax could mean for the City and its residents. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode. Ballot Measure Text: SAN DIMAS ESSENTIAL SERVICES PRESERVATION MEASURE To preserve San Dimas’ long-term financial stability; maintain emergency response, neighborhood sheriff patrols; prevent thefts/burglaries; protect/clean local water sources; keep public areas safe/clean; repair streets/potholes; maintain senior, youth/afterschool services/other general services; shall a measure be adopted establishing a 0.75% sales tax providing approximately $4,700,000 annually until ended by voters; requiring audits/public disclosure of all spending, all funds benefiting San Dimas residents?
November 25, 2019
No Big Hotel in Our Small Town
What's with those orange No Big Hotel yard signs? This episode features a very special guest, my husband Phil Ebiner, who launched the No Big Hotel effort with me back in the Fall of 2018. We talk a little bit about the history of the Bonita/Cataract lot, why we walked door-to-door with our three-month-old twins handing out yard signs, and where the City stands now with developing the vacant lot. Visit for show notes and to share your thoughts on this episode.
November 18, 2019
Our Neighborhood Coyotes
Have you ever seen a coyote at 5th and Eucla? I haven't! But coyotes are an important local topic nonetheless. Listen to this episode, where I dive into the City of San Dimas's recently adopted Coyote Management Plan and give you a concise summary of the City's plan of action. Visit for show notes, more episodes, and to leave a comment on this episode.
November 09, 2019
Introduction to Isabel in San Dimas
Welcome to the first episode of Isabel in San Dimas! Listen to the show to get to know me, Isabel, and why I started this podcast. If you are interested in local politics, community events, or just general happenings around San Dimas, this is the podcast for you! Join me, your neighbor, and let’s chat. Visit for show notes, more episodes, and to leave a comment on this episode.
November 09, 2019