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Council gives honors to Solana Center, Heritage Museum

ENCINITAS — The Encinitas City Council honored the Solana Center and the San Dieguito Heritage Museum at Wednesday’s council meeting for their respective achievements.

Mayor Kristin Gaspar issued proclamations for both groups: The Solana Center for recently receiving the state’s highest environmental honor, and the museum for its recent completion of the restoration of the historic Teten House.

The Solana Center received the Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award, or GEELA, on Jan. 19. Since 1993, the GEELA has been awarded to individuals, companies and organizations that use sustainable business practices to conserve energy, reduce waste or prevent pollution while contributing to their local economy.

Solana Center received the GEELA for our food waste diversion programming.

Gaspar presented the proclamation to Solana Center executive director Jessica Toth and the council also offered its praise to the organization for its environmental achievements.

“I routinely feel really grateful that we have the Solana Center in our city,” Councilwoman Catherine Blakespear said. “While Solana Center helps cities throughout the county, Encinitas is lucky enough to be home of the Solana Center and we benefit from that in all sorts of intangible ways.”

Among those who accepted the proclamation for the Teten House was Dave Oakley, the 87-year-old man behind the restoration efforts.

The 130-year-old home was a former schoolhouse in the mid-1880s before it was bought by Fred Teten, the local blacksmith, who connected the schoolhouse with the family home to create the structure as it is today.

Oakley has spent years more than six years on the restoration, receiving guidance along the way from members of the Teten family, namely a Fred Teten’s granddaughter, Gladys Teten Shull, who lived in the home until the 1940s.

“I am just so proud that we are receiving this honor from the city,” Oakley said earlier in the day. “We worked very hard trying to restore this piece of history for future generations to enjoy.”