December 2, 2020
MESSAGE FROM THE CITY MANAGER
Happy Holidays from the City Family to Yours
We may be approaching the holiday season a little differently this year, but we are making sure to retain all the joy and connectivity for which Murrieta is known. You can read about all of our Holiday Magic events and activities in the articles below. I hope that you get a chance to experience our new holiday light drive-through at Town Square Park. It's free, and a great way to immerse yourself in holiday cheer from the comfort of your vehicle.

The City's holiday closure is coming up from December 24 - January 1. As is our tradition, we give employees the option to vacation between Christmas and New Year’s Day so they can rest and rejuvenate during what is traditionally a very quiet time here. There will be no deliveries or plan drops during our holiday closure. You may want to take care of City business before December 24, but rest assured that Public Safety and emergency services will not be impacted. If you need to urgently contact the City during that time, just call our main number, 951-304-2489. We will be back to serve you on January 4, 2021, although it may be from behind-the-scenes, as City Hall will remain closed to walk-in visits until our COVID numbers begin to drop.

At my house, we decorated a little earlier than usual this year, and I don't think we were the only ones. It provides a few more nights to enjoy the lights and relax next to the tree with a cup of cocoa. Join me, and let's savor the season. Stay safe, keep healthy and we will see you in 2021.
Kim Summers, City Manager
December Brings Transitions to the City of Murrieta
It's a month of transitions for the City of Murrieta, starting with a December 1, 2020, farewell to longtime Council Member Kelly Seyarto and exiting Mayor Gene Wunderlich. Council Member Seyarto has dedicated 14 years to the Murrieta City Council, including four terms as Mayor. As a new member of the CA State Assembly, he will continue to represent us in Sacramento. Mayor Wunderlich, appointed last year to fill the seat vacated by Randon Lane, is completing his appointment, and what a year. The Mayor took the helm just before the COVID pandemic impacted our cities and has guided us through many unforeseen challenges. An advocate for local business and real estate, he is headed to a well-deserved semi-retirement. You can view the meeting on our Vimeo channel later today.

At the December 15, 2020 meeting, incoming Council Members Lori Stone and Dr. Lisa DeForest will officially assumer their new roles. The City will also recognize some executive team retirements at the December 15 meeting: City Clerk Stephanie Smith, who has been with us for 13 years, and Police Chief Sean Hadden, one of our original police officers with nearly 30 years under his belt, are saying good-bye to the City.

We invite you to join us virtually on December 15. Click here to view City Council Agendas (posted 72 hour before each meeting) and get information on remote viewing and participation options. You can also learn more about our City Council Members by visiting www.MurrietaCA.gov/Council
Business Snapshot: Shop Local and Shop Safe
This month, we're highlighting all Murrieta small businesses. When you are safely shopping this holiday season, please shop local when you can. Many small businesses are even accepting phone or online orders and hosting outdoor shopping spaces. Working together we can make a big difference in the survival of local small business and help ensure they are waiting for us when things re-open.

If your business is struggling, our Back-to-Business team is here to help connect you with local and state resources, email Scott Agajanian for more information.
Whether you wish to enter a single home or the whole block, sign up now for our jolly holiday home competition. But hurry, registrations close at 4 p.m. on Saturday, December 5. On Tuesday, December 8, we will release a map of all the entries and a voting link. You can select the best from submitted photos. Or even better, you can take a drive and see them all in person.
Bring your new, unwrapped toys and non-perishable food items to our one-day drive-thru Food Drive on Saturday, December 19, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Murrieta Community Center, 41810 Juniper, enter off Adams. Just place items in your trunk for staff to collect. All donated items will go to local food pantries for distribution to the Murrieta community. Questions? Call 951-304-7275.
Murrieta Library Goes Blogging, Free E-Books and More!
Murrieta Public Library has launched their official blog, created by Library Specialist Ashley Jennings-Bigay. It features booklists, activities, online resources, and local history information and a virtual library where you can explore and see what featured resources the Murrieta Library has available. Visit our blog at https://murrietalibrary.wixsite.com/library.

Starting December 1, the Library launched Freading, a free e-book service that offers unlimited access to over 100,000 titles from 1,100 publishers including HarperCollins, Harlequin, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Sourcebooks and Lonely Planet. Login using your library card and password. The link will go live on the library website: www.murrietalibrary.info under eResources. This service was funded by the California State Library through Southern California Library Cooperative System to address the increased demand from our community for e-resources as people practice physical distancing and access to physical library collections is restricted during the pandemic. 
Shortcuts to Stay Connected with the City of Murrieta
If you were forwarded this email and wish to receive More Murrieta directly to your inbox each month, please visit our sign-up page.