Valley People (Sep. 20, 2017)

by AVA News Service, September 20, 2017

THE MENDOCINO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION will hold two meetings in Anderson Valley this month, one next Wednesday, September 20 concerning the planned new arched bridge over the Navarro near Hendy Woods, the other concerning the Lambert Lane Bridge over Robinson Creek in Boonville which has suffered major damage in recent storms and currently stabilized by a temporary arrangement of riprap holding up the creek bank where the river turns sharply to the northwest. According to the DOT press release concerning the Philo-Greenwood Bridge:

“The Mendocino County Department of Transportation is continuing the design of the bridge improvement project along Philo-Greenwood Road at the Navarro River crossing and would like to provide an update to the community. The purpose of the Navarro River Bridge Project is to improve safety and convenience for drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists along Philo-Greenwood Road. The project proposes future construction for the widening & rehabilitation of this bridge over Navarro River (built in 1951 – called “River Rest Bridge”). The Project Area is located approximately 500 feet on each end of the Navarro River Bridge, about three quarters of a mile west of Highway 128. The County would like to discuss the project with its neighbors and community on Wednesday, September 20th from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. at the AV Grange 669, 9800 Highway-128, Boonville, CA 95415. PLEASE JOIN US FOR THIS IMPORTANT MEETING! If you have any questions, or cannot make the meeting, please call Jason Wise (Project Manager) at (707) 234-2846.”

THE MENDO DOT press release concerning the Robinson Creek Bridge reads:

“The Mendocino County Department of Transportation is beginning the design of the bridge improvement project on Lambert Lane at the Robinson Creek crossing in Boonville. The purpose of the Robinson Creek Bridge Project is to replace the Scour Critical Lambert Lane Bridge at Robinson Creek to improve public safety. A retaining wall was damaged during winter storms in 2015 which required emergency repairs. The Project Area is located approximately 100 feet on each end of the Robinson Creek Bridge, about 500 feet southwest of Highway 128. The County would like to discuss the project with its neighbors and community on: Wednesday, September 27th from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. at the AV Grange 669, 9800 Highway-128, Boonville, CA 95415 PLEASE JOIN US FOR THIS IMPORTANT MEETING! If you have any questions, or cannot make the meeting, please call Jason Wise (Project Manager) at (707) 234-2846.”

THE WEATHER was perfect for the Boonville Fair, which was absolutely packed all three days, culminating in the best parade in years coordinated, I understand, by A.D. Jones, the talented Boonville jeweler, reinforced by Aaron Martin, Captain Rainbow, Denver Tuttle and a cast of tens.

THE AV PANTHERS lost Friday night’s football game after a plucky comeback with 16 points in the last quarter that fell short, leaving the home boys on the short end of a 50-40 final score. The eight man game against Calistoga occurred because traditional rival Mendocino did not field a football team this year. The Panthers have several good players but not enough overall depth to reach the impressive win records of the last few years. Nevertheless, they performed well and scored six touchdowns against a much — and we mean much bigger Calistoga team, which also had a couple of fast little guys who did most of the damage to their hosts. Most of the TDs on both sides came on passes. AV had been warned to avoid trying to run up the middle against Calistoga’s behemoths who, from a distance, looked like an NFL line.

OLD FASHIONED VANDALISM. Last Wednesday night a car load of fun-loving local rover boys, presumably, knocked a number of mail boxes off their stanchions up and down Anderson Valley Way. The culprits are probably males because we've never heard of girls leaning out of the passenger side of vehicles to club residential mail boxes, although girls could have been along for the ride as cheerleaders. “Awesome, Jason, Get another one!” Back in the day this particular strain of random destruction was called ‘baseball.’ The kid wielding the bat would yell "Home run!" if he was able to knock the mail box clean off its post.

STEVE GRESHAM of Boonville installed our solar system here at your beloved community newspaper. I know there are several solar businesses in the county, all of them reputable. But if any of them can beat Steve for gettin’ er done in as timely a manner and as inexpensively as he got ours done, I’d be surprised. Highly recommended if you’re thinking of going solar.

THE HARI KRISHNA sect is selling their unique 22 acres on Sky Ranch, which comes with a beautiful little temple, a small house in which Swami Whatever lived, and an array of yurts for lesser Haris. Anderson Valley! We got it all!

GOWAN’S HEIRLOOM CIDER  has won the top spot for the second straight time at the California Cider Competition. Gowan’s, a 141-year-old apple grower based in Philo, won Best in Show and Best in Class – Modern Cider for its 2016 Sierra Beauty Heirloom. The cidery also won Best in Class – Varietal Ciders for its 2016 Gravenstein Heirloom and 2016 Macintosh Heirloom. The Philo cidery took the 2016 Best in Show for its 1876 Heirloom Cider at the third annual competition. The 2016 version this year won Reserve Best in Class – Modern Cider.

A LOCAL DEMANDED, "Why haven't you tried to find out who got slashed across the face with a machete and why he got slashed at Rancho Navarro last month?" I tried to find out. It apparently happened in connection with a dope raid, but the vic ran into the wild and hasn't been seen since. That's the version I got. The prob is, and here we veer off into No Comment land, but we're informed that the pot raiders operate apart from the Sheriff's Department because the DEA, which partially funds the Marijuana Price Support Unit, as it's been called, does not trust the SD. Persistent rumor has it that the Feds think that someone in the Sheriff's Department has, in the past, tipped off certain growers that they were on the hit list. Be that as it may or may not be, the pot raiders don't issue press releases, although they have said they are focusing on grows that do environmental damage, a target-rich environment, for sure.

WE ENJOYED meeting Brenda Hodges at the Fine Arts Building on the Fairgrounds when we hauled our art entries in for display among this year's collection of Mendo creativity. Brenda seemed momentarily nonplussed at our replica pig, a four hundred pounder which, to even squeeze into the hall, required the removal of the center bar of the double doors. If nothing else, we expect a ribbon for largest exhibit.

OUR MORE PROPORTIONAL EXHIBITS are the work of the Kalantarians, father Mike and daughter Annie. Mike wrought a Doug-fir pole stand for two photo montages artfully arranged by Annie called "The Faces of Mendocino County." Last year's collection proved quite popular with Fairgoers, mesmerized by faces of friends and relatives no longer with us. The photos are drawn from the ava's archive.

20 PERCENT OFF every Saturday at Farm Supply, Philo, where I scored a bedraggled pair of fuchsias last week which I intend to nurse back to robust health. I thought about how much I miss the fuchsia nursery just north of Fort Bragg, and who might remember the lady up on Spy Rock north of Laytonville who specialized in Japanese maples and peonies? Odd that you don't see peonies much around Mendo. People seem to go big for dahlias, which I do, too, and they're darn near, but not quite as striking as peonies, imho as they say on Facebook. About fifteen years ago I bought a rare Japanese maple from Spy Rock Lady that became so spectacular in late fall in a splendiferous deep red different than other maples, and deeper even than the deep red of pistachio trees, that I took pains to replant it in a concrete planter that it took two of us to lift. Call me paranoid, but that thing got so much close attention from other plant people, and I know what covetous maniacs they can be, that I was afraid someone would rip it off. And someone did, too. I mourn its loss yet.

SOHUM LILY REMEMBERS THE SPY ROCK NURSERY: “Thank you for the fair photos, not as good as being there but better than nothin’. The Mendo County Apple Fair was always a lot of fun. Good to see the wool show still happening :) It’s Mountain Maples; the owners Nanci and Don Fiers, long out of business. I’m always a bit flattered when someone makes off with one of my prize botanical treasures. I once had someone come to my door one late February offering me $100 for my flowering daphne. You could smell it a block away, but not for sale! It was worth more to me for its ease of cultivation and reliable heavenly scent for weeks in a cold and dreary time of year. Deer resistant, too. Peonies don’t grow too well without a lot of winter chill. They’re very big here in Siskiyou. Saving money up for a coral colored cultivar; we used them a lot when I worked at the florist’s in Garbageville.”

GARBERVILLE gets no respect: I’ve seen the scruffy Southern HumCo crossroads often referred to  “Gooberdam,” and Willits as “South Gooberdam.”

A READER noted that the mighty AVA garnered another blue ribbon for their art entry, a photo collage called "The Faces of Mendocino County," a masterly assemblage of Mendo visages arrayed by the gifted Mendocino High School senior, Annie Kalantarian whose justly proud father noted, "I forgot to mention the nice job someone(s) did on all the art-building presentations -- museum quality work this year." That's gotta be energetic Brenda Hodges, whose eye is so unfailing she's gotta be an artist herself.

WE NEED more garden tours in this county, beginning with this one, one we all enjoy glimpses of every day created by Rod Balson at the corner of 128 and Mountain View Road. Balson has managed Anderson Valley’s most spectacular lateral display of morning glories, and anyone who covers a cyclone fence in morning glories deserves a civic medal.

ACCORDING TO DAN KUNY, Will Lemons has successfully made the jump from small school football at AVHS to the college game. Lemons, of the Anderson Valley Lemons, is starting at defensive end at Santa Rosa JC and, according to Kuny, "dominating." Kuny reports that at the game he saw the opposing team "stopped running to Lemons' side."


I wanted to share with you what a truly heartwarming day it was when we had our mom's ashes buried. The memories of the conversations and moments shared that day will last a long time. Clyde Doggett is such a kind, thoughtful caregiver of the Evergreen Cemetery. Not only did he share some very nice memories of my mom and dad from over the years, he was able to chat with my older sister, Joan, and her friend from their schooldays in the Valley. Joann Prather Borges and Joann's husband, Fred had joined us at the cemetery that day to offer support and to share memories. Clyde was also very mindful of an elderly man who had driven from Vacaville to tidy up his wife's grave. It was warm out and Clyde was concerned that the man might be over exerting himself. Clyde went over and just pitched in, engaging the man in a lovely, quiet way. That was so touching to witness-a truly generous and unselfish act of kindness. Clyde is more than a caretaker of the cemetery. He offers a human connection that is true to his kind spirit. Laying loved ones to rest is not an easy task. Clyde's genuine dedication to honoring those who have passed on is a gift to families, loved ones, and friends. Joan and her husband took us over the the Museum where she put up a small plaque to commemorate our mom. She had us all sign the guestbook and proudly pointed out many very interesting items on exhibit. My son, Alex (not a kid at 33) was thrilled that he was able to ring the school bell as he held his 6-month old little boy. He has many memories of visiting his grandma Loretta in Boonville! Alex's son will hear the Boonville stories as he grows up. Lunch in town, a stroll through some shops, a look at the local artistic talent shown in a gallery or two, and a stop at Rossi's to visit for a bit with Chris Rossi was the finish to a beautiful Saturday in Boonville. Mom would have loved it and we all felt that she was there with us as we went through the day. You are so fortunate to live in the Anderson Valley. Some things have changed, yet the warmth and kindness in the human spirit remains strong and genuine. In appreciation, and a plan to return for another day in the Valley,

Jamey Holsten Myers, Napa

BOONDOGGLE ALERT! That’s what we posted last night after reading Agenda Item 4w on Tuesday’s Supe’s agenda: “Approval of Agreement with Mendocino County Office of Education in the Amount of $175,000 to Provide CalFresh Outreach Services to School Children in Mendocino County for Fiscal Year 2017-18 … On Tuesday the boondoggle was unanimously approved.

THE SUPERVISORS jealously guard their lush pay and perks down to the penny. If they were asked to pay $175,000 of their own money for the simple task of placing telephone calls to the admin offices of Mendo school districts for the purposes of getting eligible people to sign up for Cal Fresh, would they spend $175,000 of their own money to do it?

DOUBT IT, Would they spend your money to do it? Of course, no problemo. But last week they agreed with Welfare chief-tess, Anne Molgaard, that if Mendo didn’t spend the money some other county would, so by all means let’s route it through the County Office of Education to do what our schools already do as a matter of routine, which is sending home with each student at the beginning of each school year, a bilingual notice urging eligible families to sign up for CalFresh.

TO BE CLEARER than clear, the Supes are squandering $175,000 to duplicate what’s already being done by the individual school districts of Mendocino County via the sign-up forms in the packets sent home with all children at the beginning of the school year.


“Western Fairs Association Blue Ribbon Award presented to Amy Bloyd in recognition and appreciation of dedicated support to the Mendocino County Fair 2017”

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