If you could use just three words to describe San Juan Capistrano what would they be? We posed that question to the town's five City Council candidates and here's what they came up with:
Ginny Kerr: History - Horses - Home
"I will fight to preserve the character of our city," said Kerr, who considers herself a newcomer after 14 years in in town, compared against some families who have lived here for generations. She said she supports the Western heritage and traditions of the city.
Roy Byrnes: Unique - Historic - Bedroom
"Scouts honor, I will not serve more than three terms," jokes the 89-year-old doctor. He notes that "Bedroom" doesn't refer to Mustang Ranch, but to a decision made in 1975 to limit the number of residents projected for the city. Although he was mayor 37 years ago when that plan was designed, he said it has created problems attracting businesses. Byrnes said he wants to protect longstanding local businesses.
Sam Allevato: Tradition - History - People
As a City Councilman, Allevato said he knows "Getting our financial house in order is the most important job, along with public safety." Allevato said he appreciates the rich traditions of the city, which he attributes to two centuries of history. "Layers" of culture including the native Juanenos, Spanish padres, Mexicans, Anglo farmers, and people from other areas who have "morphed" and melded to create San Juan's culture and traditions.
Tom Marantz: Evergreen - Hospitality - Bustling
"We have a lot happening in our town," Marantz said. "Bustling" means the town enjoys activity, businesses growing and a lively atmosphere, he said, adding that San Juan is "timeless." Marantz is a Marine veteran who spent years in Iraq rebuilding cities and towns.
Kim McCarthy: Little Girl's Dream
"I was a little girl living in Detroit who dreamed of riding a horse," said McCarthy, who now owns two horses and a rescued goat. She said she wishes more of San Juan's little girls could realize that same dream. McCarthy said she knows the value of a dollar and understands retailers need to turn a buck everyday. She said residents and retailers have been overlooked in San Juan and that many of the city's traffic problems are "self-inflicted."