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MCT: Friday, November 22, 2019

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EXPECT ANOTHER SUNNY AND MILD DAY today, with Pacific high pressure keeping the weather quiet through the weekend. A colder and wetter weather pattern will arrive next week. (National Weather Service)

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Two people died in Mendocino County Tuesday night in a Highway 101 crash north of Ukiah, but a child in the SUV survived, according to the CHP.

The victims were identified Wednesday as Cheyenne Hoaglen, 25, and Randolph Balladarez, 32, both of Covelo, according to the Mendocino County Coroner’s Office. The two were romantically involved.

They died in the 9:30 p.m. crash near Lake Mendocino Drive, the CHP said in a news release Wednesday.

A four-year-old boy riding in a car seat suffered moderate injuries. The boy was Hoaglen’s son, according to authorities.

The crash was the third this week involving a double fatality in the region, or involving local residents.

Hoaglen had been driving a black 2003 Cadillac Escalade, headed north on the highway. North of Lake Mendocino Drive the SUV drove off the east side of the road, dropped down an embankment, hit a metal fence, traveled up a dirt embankment then overturned onto the driver’s side. The vehicle then hit a parked Caterpillar tractorscraper parked on a private yard, the CHP said.

First responders found the couple dead from the crash and the boy in the back seat.

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STACY SQUIRE’S USE PERMIT for an AirBnB rental about two miles up a private road behind the old Horse Haven ranch between Philo and Navarro was unanimously denied by the Planning Commission Thursday. Neighbors unanimously objected on grounds of privacy, fire hazard, road maintenance, driving hazards, and security problems. Use permits are required for AirBnB rentals not on publicly maintained roads. LEAD by neighbors Don Shanley and his wife Laura Quatrocchi with their former County Counsel Terri Gross, the neighbors attorney, the eloquent Terry Gross, argued against the permit application which would also open the door to major events like wedding or parties with a simple administrative add-on permit.

MS. SQUIRE ARGUED that she has paid for several road improvements on the upper portions of the road to her property and implied that her neighbors have some personal animosity toward her. She thought the neighbor concerns were overblown for such a insignificant permit application and that she needed the supplemental income.

DIANE WEIDEMANN, Fifth District Commissioner, said she’d driven that “problematic” hard-to-drive road to the property and that it was simply not a place to bring random city-slicker or brightlighter visitors. Commissioner Jacobsen cited liability problems associated with the risk of damage from strangers on such difficult steep and windy roads. Another Commissioner cited the applicant’s history of non-compliance with prior conditions and that she’s been renting it on AirBnB without a permit already. Commissioner Madilyn Holtkamp cited the fire hazard especially since the applicant wouldn’t be present during the rentals.

MS. SQUIRE can legally rent the property on a longer-term (greater than 30-days at a time) basis without a permit. And she has 30 days to file an appeal, although her chances of reversal of an unanimous Planning Commission vote would seem to be remote.

OLD TIMERS will recall that Nick Alexander, son of Dragnet's Ben Alexander, first owned the Squire place. It used to be accessed via the Holmes Ranch.

(Mark Scaramella)

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THIS YEAR’S Anderson Valley High School girls basketball coach is Justin Rhoades and high school boys is Luis Espinoza. The Panthers just played our first game (pre-season) against Roseland Collegiate Prep in Santa Rosa. The girls won 20-17 and the boys lost 33-35. We will be playing tomorrow at home (JV and varsity teams) at the Boonville High School Gym against Upper Lake. Game starts at 3:30 in this order: JV girls, JV boys, varsity girls, varsity boys. (Arthur Folz, AV High Athletic Director)

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Michael Saner, 60, formerly of Navarro, lately convicted of murder in the first degree in the shooting death of William “Willie” Martinez, was sentenced to 50-years-to-life in the state prison by Judge Cindee Mayfield early Thursday morning.


The sentencing had been put over from the previous day, and after hearing defense attorney Patrick Pekin’s request to use her honor’s discretion to not add the enhancement of the “use of a firearm,” Judge Mayfield said, “I don’t fnd this an appropriate case to strike the gun enhancement [which in effect doubles the 25-to-life for the murder]. The murder appeared to be premeditated and the alleged blackout [from Saner’s use of drugs and alcohol] was really not all that compelling in mitigation. In fact, there was not much evidence of anything mitigating presented that was helpful to Mr. Saner. His criminal history consisted of numerous convictions, such as battery, brandishing, violations of court orders; in short, he has not lived a “predominatingly law-abiding life.” In view of Saner’s inability to pay, the judge reduced the victim’s restitution fund fine from $10,000 to $1000 and waived the $712 fee for the presentencing investigation and report from probation. “In all this time the defendant has shown no remorse for his actions nor the taking of another human being’s life, nor any acceptance that others may have a different view than his. He still considers himself the victim,” said Judge Mayfield. Saner was also sentenced to a year in jail for a trailing misdemeanor, and given credit for time served on that count.

(Bruce McEwen)




UKIAH - Convicted murderer Michael Jay Saner, age 61, formerly of Navarro, was sentenced Thursday in Mendocino County Superior Court to 50 years to life in state prison.

Saner after having been convicted of murder in the first degree received the designated punishment for that crime - 25 years to life. Saner also received a consecutive 25 years to life for his personal and intentional use of firearm to inflict death upon another.

Saner on Thursday continued to express outrage during his sentencing, claiming "the cops lied in their reports" and that he was being "railroaded."

At trial, Saner claimed he had blacked out during critical time periods which prevented him from being cross-examined as to what he might claim had happened on the date in question. Today, however, the defendant's memory had recovered and he now remembers that the victim had a knife that the defendant believes justified the defendant in shooting the victim in the back. Other witnesses have been clear from the start in their statements that the victim was not armed with any sort of weapon when he was caught off guard at a friend's home and murdered.

The prosecutor at today's sentencing hearing was Senior Deputy District Attorney Beth Norman.

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AV Fire Chief Andres Avila said neighbors called the fire in after they heard some kind of explosion in the area and saw smoke from the fifth-wheel on Lazy Springs Road.

Initially called in as “an explosion” and “three people including a child,” firefighters arrived to find an unoccupied fifth wheel and nearby car fully involved in flames. Shingles on a nearby well-house were also on fire and were quickly extinguished by arriving AV units accompanied by a Calfire helicopter which landed with the crew getting out and assisting in putting out the blaze. An air tanker from Ukiah also arrived in the sky above the scene but was called off when ground crews were able to handle the fire before it escaped into nearby brush.

Chief Avila said the fire originated in the living room of the vacant fifth-wheel but he could not speculate on the cause. It did not appear to be marijuana related. The fifth-wheel and car were a total loss.

(Mark Scaramella)

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On November 20, 2019 at approximately 8:35 A.M., Deputies were dispatched to a report of a person in possession of a firearm at a business in the 44900 block of North Highway 101 in Laytonville. Deputies responded and contacted Niko Steffen, 38, of Laytonville, inside the business.


Deputies interviewed Steffen and noticed he showed objective signs of being intoxicated. Deputies later contacted a seven year-old juvenile at a separate location. Deputies learned that Stephen had allegedly pointed a firearm at a juvenile while at the business and negligently fired the firearm in the juvenile's presence. A two year old juvenile girl was also present. During the investigation, Sheriff's Office Detectives sought and were granted a search warrant for the business. During the service of the search warrant, Deputies located a .44 magnum handgun, spent casings, and other evidence to indicate the handgun was discharged inside the business. Deputies also located and secured video footage of the incident from the business surveillance system. It was later discovered that the recovered handgun was reported as being stolen and Steffen was on probation with terms including no alcohol and obey all laws. From reviewing the surveillance footage from the business, Deputies determined probable cause existed to arrest Steffen for child cruelty/endangerment and negligently discharging a firearm. Steffen was placed under arrested for Willful Cruelty To a Child: Possible Injury/Death, Discharge of Firearm in Grossly Negligent Manner, Receiving Stolen Property, and Probation Revocation. Steffen was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $25,000 bail.

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SUPERVISOR WILLIAMS: "The State’s answer to the failed Proposition 64 roll out now includes raising taxes? We’re trying to transition the illicit market — the illicit market has zero environmental oversight, safety testing or public revenue generation — to the regulated market. On many fronts, the State is the hindrance. From seed to consumer, the overall tax rate exceeds 40% and businesses are barred from deducting business expenses. The impact of keeping cultivation illicit through overbearing regulation is tens of millions of dollars in lost revenue to our county."

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As already provided, on November 19, 2019, at approximately 11:55a.m. Officers of the Fort Bragg Police Department were informed that a potential threat had been made directed at Fort Bragg High School by a Custodian [Bradon Williamson, 36, of Fort Bragg / see below] employed by the School District.

To clarify questions that have been raised by the Community, as to why the High School was not placed on lockdown, representatives from the School District Administration and the Fort Bragg Police Department assessed the threat and determined that there was no immediate danger to students or staff on any school campus. A few relevant facts that were considered in making that determination and not provided in the earlier Press Release:

The threat was limited to verbal statements.

The statements made by the Suspect to a co-worker were after school hours on November 18 and not reported to District Administration until the next day - November 19.

The Suspect never returned to campus after leaving work late on November 18.

The Police Department and District Administration confirmed the Suspect’s whereabouts immediately after confirming the threat and the Police Department then arranged for the “Felony” stop near his home.

No firearms were found in the Suspect’s vehicle during the “Felony” stop.

After the Suspect was taken into custody, the search warrant was served and the firearms, rounds of ammunition, high capacity magazines and ballistic equipment was discovered. The search was conducted late in the day on November 19 and it was late evening before the situation was fully assessed.

The School District Administration first communicated the incident to School District staff early on November 20. Parents were then informed, using several communication channels. The delay in the City’s initial Press Release was timed so that parents would initially learn about the incident directly from the School District and not social media.

Bail has been set for the Suspect, and it is not known at this time if bail will be posted. Please remember that this is normal course in our Country’s judicial system. The firearms, ammunition and equipment taken into custody during the search of the Suspect’s home remain in Police custody.

The case has been submitted to the District Attorney’s (DA) Office for consideration of filing for the appropriate criminal charges. The suspect is expected to be arraigned today. Any further developments on the case will come from the DA’s Office.

Anyone with information regarding this incident may contact Officer Chris Awad at (707) 961-2800 ext. 180, or the Fort Bragg Police Department (Anonymous) Crime Tip Hotline at (707) 961-3049.

On Tuesday, November 19, at approximately 11:55 am, officers of the Fort Bragg Police Department were informed that a potential threat had been made directed at Fort Bragg High School.

Officers quickly verified the information via witnesses and began a work up on the suspect’s information.

At 1:25 pm, the suspect’s vehicle was observed on the 700 block of Maple Street and a 'Felony' stop was conducted. The lone occupant, Bradon Williamson , age 36 of Fort Bragg, was taken into custody and his vehicle was impounded.

Officers prepared and served a search warrant at the suspect’s house in the 400 block of Harold Street where numerous firearms, 1,000’s of rounds of ammunition, high capacity magazines and ballistic equipment were confiscated.

This investigation is continuing as the evidence seized is being inventoried. The case will be forwarded to the District Attorney’s Office for filing considerations at the conclusion of the investigation.

This action was made possible by the systems put in place by the school district and the quick actions of all involved so that no one was hurt during this incident.

The quick resolution to this investigation avoided anyone at the school from being put at risk.

Anyone with information regarding this incident may contact Officer Chris Awad at (707) 961-2800 ext. 180, or the Fort Bragg Police Department (Anonymous) Crime Tip Hotline at (707) 961-3049."

(Fort Bragg Police presser)


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At its Thursday, November 21st quarterly meeting, the Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) approved approximately $28.7 million in grants to help restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat throughout California. Some of the 27 approved projects will benefit fish and wildlife — including some endangered species — while others will provide public access to important natural resources.

Several projects will also demonstrate the importance of protecting working landscapes that integrate economic, social and environmental stewardship practices beneficial to the environment, landowners and the local community.

Funding for these projects comes from a combination of sources including the Habitat Conservation Fund and bond measures approved by voters to help preserve and protect California’s natural resources.

Among the projects funded:

A $2.57 million grant to Trout Unlimited for a cooperative project with the Mendocino Railway, the Mendocino Land Trust and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to restore access to 1.15 miles of steelhead and salmon habitat and reduce in-stream sediment upstream of where the California Western Railway crosses the upper Noyo River in Mendocino County.

A $675,000 grant to the Lake County Land Trust to acquire approximately 200 acres of land for the protection of shoreline freshwater wetland, riparian woodland and wet meadow habitats that support the state threatened Clear Lake hitch along with the western pond turtle, a state species of special concern, and also provide future wildlife-oriented, public-use opportunities. The land is located on the southwestern shore of Clear Lake in an area known as Big Valley in Lake County.

For more information about the WCB, please visit

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This from Rachel Williams - please reply to her directly ( or as soon as you can so that your input can be considered - thank you.

I am a part of the newly formed AV Community Health & Wellness Committee. We are assessing the wellness needs of our community and looking into the best ways to serve those needs. I have been asked to collect input from the community to share at this week’s meeting. If you have a moment, could you please answer the following two questions for me so that I can report the results back to the committee? It will be an anonymous, of course! If you have already shared your answers with someone else from the committee, that’s great! There are quite a few of us collecting answers.

Thank you so much for any input,

Rachel Williams


  1. What are the top two changes you would make to improve your health today if you could?
  2. What are the barriers to making those changes?

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CARTOON BY THE LATE FORGES—Spain’s greatest cartoonist:

Politician: It's either us or chaos!
Crowd: Chaos!
Politician: Great.

(Louis Bedrock)

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On 11-16-2019 at approximately 6:30 P.M., Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a disturbance at a residence in the 25500 block of Poppy Drive in Willits. It was reported a male juvenile was wrestled to the ground and physically assaulted by Gary Wyatt, 38, of Willits, who left the location on foot.


Deputies responded to the residence and interviewed the uninjured juvenile male and another witness. It was determined that Wyatt assaulted the juvenile during an argument over property at the home. Deputies located Wyatt a short distance away from the residence on Poppy Drive. Wyatt exhibited signs of being under the influence of a controlled substance. During the investigation, Deputies determined Wyatt to be in violation of Child Cruelty, and Under the Influence of Controlled Substance. Wyatt was placed under arrest for the listed charges without incident. Wyatt was subsequently booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $25,000 bail.

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Re: Your Honda Civic

Congratulations on your Honda reaching 300,000 miles. I had a 1986 Civic hatchback and currently own a 2002 four door Civic. The engine on both cars blew a head gasket at 330,000 miles. I chose the least expensive option and had a used engine installed in both cars. I drove the ‘86 another 100,000+ miles until it wouldn’t pass the smog test so the state of CA paid me $1,000 to get it off the road. The 2002 now has 375,000 miles on it and it runs great. I hope you have a plan for a replacement vehicle. May your Honda keep going for many more miles.

Gary Guliasi


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“Why can’t you be more like little Hester Prynne? She’s getting straight A’s.”

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WAY TO DO PROBATION, RUSS, Sitting In A Car Like A Total Mope At 2:30am With A Whoopee Pipe In The Passenger Seat. Officer, Lock This Man Up For His Own Safety.

On November 15, 2019 at approximately 2:38 A.M., a Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Deputy on uniformed patrol observed a subject seated in a vehicle that was parked in the 1300 block of North State Street in Ukiah. The Deputy contacted Russell Harmon, 50, of Willits, who was seated in the driver's seat of the parked vehicle.


The Deputy learned Harmon was on Pre-Trial Release with a search waiver condition. Deputies searched Harmon's clothing and the vehicle which resulted in the discovery of a large amount of suspected methamphetamine. Further investigation lead the Deputy to believe Harmon possessed the controlled substance for sale. The Deputy also found four suspected methamphetamine smoking pipes during the search. During the investigation, Deputies observed Harmon showed objective signs of recent controlled substance use. Harmon was placed under arrest for Possession of Controlled Substances for Sale, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and Disobeying a Court Order. Harmon was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $40,000 bail.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, November 21, 2019

Asbury, Castaneda, Collins

JOSEPH ASBURY, Potter Valley. Domestic abuse.

JOHNNY RAY CASTANEDA, Ukiah. Shoplifting, petty theft, probation revocation.

XAVIER COLLINS, Sacramento/Willits. Under influence.

Frazier-Whipple, Galindo, Hammond

KENNETH FRAZIER-WHIPPLE, Row/Redwood Valley. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

THOMAS GALINDO JR., Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)

DARIN HAMMOND, Ukiah. Disobeying court order, resisting, probation revocation.

Harris, Hastings, Joaquin

CHARLES HARRIS, Willits. Domestic abuse.

REX HASTINGS, Fort Bragg. Contempt of court, failure to appear.

ANGIE JOAQUIN, Covelo. Probation revocation.

Juarez, Spitsen, Steffen

MARTIN JUAREZ, Hopland. Under influence.

MARK SPITSEN, Ukiah. Controlled substance.

NIKO STEFFEN, Laytonville. Grossly negligent firearm discharge, child endangerment, probation revocation.

Sundstrom, Vinson, Williamson

KRISTIN SUNDSTROM, Ukiah. Domestic battery.

DONALD VINSON, Ukiah. Domestic abuse.

BRANDON WILLIAMSON, Fort Bragg. Criminal threats.

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NORTHERN LIGHTS: The bold, brooding music of Sibelius and Schubert

Soloist Polina Sedukh featured

by Roberta Werdinger

The Ukiah Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Phillip Lenberg, presents "Finnish and Unfinished," December 7 at 8 p.m. and December 8 at 2 p.m., at the Mendocino College Center Theatre. The concert--bold, brooding, and beautiful--consists of several pieces from Finnish composer Jean Sibelius, including his Violin Concerto in D Minor featuring distinguished violinist Polina Sedukh, along with Franz Schubert's "Unfinished Symphony." There will be a free 30-minute talk before each concert on aspects of the music--at 7 p.m. on Dec. 7, and 1 p.m. on Dec. 8.

Born in St. Petersburg to a musical family, Polina Sedukh began playing violin at age four. At seven, she debuted as a soloist with the Chamber Orchestra of Liepaya, Latvia. She has since soloed for orchestras in Russia, Europe and the United States and been the prizewinner at numerous competitions, including the International Spohr Competition in Weimar, Germany. After coming to the United States at the age of 19, she earned a degree from the Longy School of Music in Boston and began playing for orchestras, including the Boston Symphony. She now plays second violin for the San Francisco Symphony, a position she has held since 2009. Despite her many accomplishments, Sedukh maintains a clear line to the traditions imbibed in her childhood, especially from her first and most important teacher--her father, Grigory Sedukh.

The elder Sedukh was himself descended from musicians: His father was a violin teacher and his grandfather a cellist, making Polina at least a fourth-generation musician. As a child, Polina used to hear her father play the violin all the time, prompting her to ask for her own as a New Year's present. The granting of that wish launched her early career.

"I knew I wanted to do nothing else as a profession," Sedukh says. "It was not easy for me to withstand many hours of tutoring and practice. Now I have a deep sense of gratitude to him and to my teachers." She and her father, still an active musician himself, are now able to confer as colleagues and friends.

Which also means that they have reached a level of respect and understanding about their different techniques. Polina, long transplanted from Russia, has learned to adapt her style to American tastes and sensibilities. "For me, to learn how to play in an orchestra was not an easy task," she recollects. "In Russia, the main interest is solo playing. In the U.S. people tend to focus on cooperation and collaboration. Growing up, I was used to my accompanist following my lead. When I came here, I realized it is not just about being musical; it is about listening to others more than to yourself."

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957) bridged the Romantic and modern eras. Revered as Finland's greatest composer and the voice of its people, he composed symphonies, an opera, chamber and choral music, and one violin concerto before falling silent in the mid-1920s. Nevertheless, his contribution helped Finland develop a sense of identity during a time when the small Scandinavian country was establishing independence from Russia.

Sedukh notes that St. Petersburg, where she grew up, is not far from Finland, and that she used to vacation in a place that used to be Finnish territory. The connection she feels to this land is intimate. "Russians like going to summer houses, picking berries, swimming in lakes, making every effort to spend summer in nature. The Finnish are the same way," she notes. The winters, in contrast, are very cold and dark. "I know something about this darkness," Sedukh relates. "Darkness conceals. It's not cheerful, but it's deeply passionate. I don't find it depressing. It is just how it feels when there's only five hours of daylight.

"This music feels very personal to me," Sedukh continues. "I'm deeply passionate, but it's often concealed… I try to go by my own feelings. I prefer not to read too much" about the music she has been assigned to play. "I have my own image about music."

Symphony Director Lenberg comments, "This rich, powerful concerto is an elevated glimpse into the art and emotions of Finnish culture. The stark, open majesty of the frozen north is captured in this music. I can’t wait for you to hear Polina’s stunning interpretation of this masterful and mysterious piece." ​​

The Orchestra will also be playing Franz Schubert's Symphony No. 8 in B Minor, also known as the "Unfinished Symphony" because, for reasons that are unclear, only two movements out of the customary four were completed. Nevertheless, these two movements--Allegro moderato and Andante con moto--are full of Schubert's expressive beauty and lyrical passion. A critic who attended the symphony's premiere in 1865 commented, "The whole movement is a sweet stream of melodies, in spite of its vigor and geniality so crystal-clear that you can see every pebble on the bottom. And everywhere the same warmth, the same golden sunshine that makes buds grow!"

Tickets for "Finnish and Unfinished" are available at; Mendocino Book Company in Ukiah; or at the door, where credit cards are now accepted. Tickets are $30 for ages 18 to 64; $25 for age 65 and up; and free for ASB card holders and youth under 18. Group-discounted tickets are available online. Wine and beer are now available at the venue and may be brought into the theatre. For more information contact the Ukiah Symphony at (707) 510-1793.

Polina Sedukh

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Wavelength Farm has pasture-raised holiday turkeys for sale!

They're delicious heritage breed, bronze-breasted turkeys, averaging around 14lbs in size. 11$/lb.

The pasture-raised poultry greatly contribute to the multi-species, holistic grazing program at the farm. They are raised, honored, slaughtered, and butchered all by the hardworking team at Wavelength farm.

Please contact Kelan at or call (310)433-4604 to reserve yours!

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The Holiday Community Dinner

Sun. Dec. 8 5:30

AV Grange

Yes folks , it's coming up sooner than we all think. Sponsored by the Foodshed and the Grange, our yearly FREE gathering for one and all. Started in the late 80's it's become a wonderful tradition. Come have a delicious dinner, turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing provided by Grange and Foodshed and all the extras provided by everyone else, i.e. a monster potluck with you bringing desserts, salads, drinks, vegetarian options, and, if you can swing it, your own utensils. There's a kids zone, Lynn on the white grand piano with dinner music and perhaps some caroling, and a long line where you get to hang out with friends and neighbors. As always there is much need for volunteers to cook the turkeys, mashed potatoes, gravy, and stuffing before the event AND folks to pitch in, run the kitchen, serve, set up, decorate, clean up and on and on. Helping out is a great way to meet and greet both new and old members of our community. If you want to help out before, during, or after the event please call or email Cap Rainbow 895-3807 or

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The waves of protests breaking out in country after country around the world beg the question: Why aren’t Americans rising up in peaceful protest like our neighbors? We live at the very heart of this neoliberal system that is force-feeding the systemic injustice and inequality of 19th-century laissez-faire capitalism to the people of the 21st century. So we are subject to many of the same abuses that have fueled mass protest movements in other countries, including high rents, stagnant wages, cradle-to-grave debt, ever-rising economic inequality, privatized health care, a shredded social safety net, abysmal public transportation, systemic political corruption and endless war.

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The highlight of the season!

Come one, come all to the 10th Annual Festival of Lights at the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. Each winter the Gardens transforms into a spectacular show of glittering color. This year’s Festival will run rain or shine each Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evening from November 29 through December 22 (5PM - 7PM; no pets please).

Take a stroll along the Gardens’ twinkling pathways lined with inventive displays. Then warm up and wind down in a beautifully decorated tent complete with live music, sweet treats, local craft brews, and some of the best wine Mendocino County has to offer. Be sure to check the Festival calendar ( for a schedule of musical acts and bonus nights.

Tickets are $10 each, children age 16 and under attend for free. Be sure to take advantage of the free parking shuttle, available each night of the Festival of Lights. The shuttle will pick up from the Mendocino Community College parking lot (1211 Del Mar Dr, Fort Bragg) beginning at 4:45 PM and take you directly to the Gardens' entrance. The last shuttle pick-up from the College parking lot will be at 6:45 PM.

Join us at the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens this holiday season, where beautiful blooms and crashing waves combine with good cheer and dazzling lights for an experience you won’t soon forget.

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Join us at the Ukiah Library, on Sunday, November 24th, from 2-4 pm for a writing workshop with Natasha Yim! Participants can expect to learn how to use visual storytelling, how to create strong narrative arcs, and how to devise a plot. Natasha Yim is a children’s author and freelance writer. She has published six picture books and written for the children’s magazines, Highlights for Children, Appleseeds, Faces, and Muse. She is also a regular contributor to Mendocino Arts Magazine. Her upcoming math-concept picture book, Luna’s Yum Yum Dim Sum illustrated by Violet Kim, will be published by Charlesbridge Publishing in Fall 2020, as part of the Storytelling Math series. She is currently working on a multicultural historical fiction middle grade novel. Natasha grew up in Malaysia, Singapore, and Hong Kong and loves to write about people and cultures from around the world. To sign up, or for more information, please contact the Ukiah Library: 463-4490.

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Sorry, progressives, but I never made you any promises. Sure, I may have endorsed the Green New Deal, single-payer healthcare, and decriminalizing border-crossings. But after a lot of soul-searching, and significantly more poll-testing, it turns out that I am a centrist in the mold of Joe Biden. Amazing timing, right?

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“I DON'T READ THE MAIL,” said Attorney Robbie Feaver. “For 15 years I got holes in my stomach from the mail. Then I turned 40 and said, Life is too short, because one thing is surer than gravity: there is only bad news in the mail. No lie. First there's always the motions, the bane of my existence. On the other side of every case there’s a defense firm getting paid by the hour by an insurance company, so it's money in their pocket to file every harebrained, damaged, not-a-chance-in-hell motion they can think of. Motion to dismiss, motion for summary judgment, motion to reconsider prior motion, motion to revise proffer, motion to declare Puerto Rico a state — you can't believe it! And we are on contingency! Nobody pays me to answer this dreck. If I win ten motions but lose the eleventh, the whole case still craters. Every morning there are letters from clients who have been romanced by other attorneys and want to discharge me after years of work. Urgent alerts from trial lawyers organizations about anti-plaintiff legislation that the insurance lobby inspired. And of course never the checks that defense lawyers owe on resolved cases. Only bad news.”

Scott Turow, “Personal Injuries”

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Message fr. Craig Louis Stehr @ The Magic Ranch in Redwood Valley, CA

The very warmest spiritual greetings, I am chillin' 10 miles north of Ukiah, awaiting social security benefits to come in the first week of December. At that point, I am mobile. Having declared spiritual autonomy, (following 40 years of frontline peace & justice/radical environmental activism), I am identified with the "Eternal Witness", and continue to play my part well in society. I am seeking others for a creative spiritually enlightened future, in spite of all of the craziness in contemporary politics, and the horror of materialism. It is evident to all of us who bothered to cultivate a spiritual life that there is another way to go! If you identify with this message, you are invited to make contact. Indeed, what would you like to do? What are your visions? What would you do in this world if you knew that you could not fail? What makes your heart sing? PS. We can still vote for Bernie if he's on the ballot.

Craig Louis Stehr

November 21, 2019


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County Counsel has responded to arguments raised by Mendocino Redwood Company (circa Summer of 2016). Supervisors were hands off, allowing counsel to provide a response based on merit and free of political influence.

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  1. Lazarus November 22, 2019


    Elon’s newest…

    As always,

  2. Lazarus November 22, 2019


    Elon’s newest…

    As always,

  3. James Marmon November 22, 2019


    CEO Angelo going down in flames after the 2020 elections.



  4. Harvey Reading November 22, 2019


    Because we’re stupider than most.

    • James Marmon November 22, 2019

      Impeach Trump and see what happens.

      • Harvey Reading November 22, 2019

        I guess that is supposed to be a threat sort of, eh James? The revolt of the very stupid. Ya gotta remember, boy, that from pictures of I’ve seen, the “revolutionaries” make very large targets with their overhanging bellies. I’m shaking as I type.

  5. Harvey Reading November 22, 2019


    Trump’s Mars Rocket.

  6. Lazarus November 22, 2019

    Measure B-ness:

    In today’s Willits Weekly Mike A’Dair has a piece on the $3,333,000.00 Measure B architectural contract situation. His break downs are interesting, it seems to cost nearly as much to hire a pencil pusher as it does to hire a builder…

    It is of no wonder, Ted Williams and Dan Gjerde voted NO!
    I sincerely hope the AVA and others do not let this issue die a quiet death…
    As always,

  7. Jim Armstrong November 22, 2019

    I have to admit I didn’t try to read every word of the long letter above by county counsel.

    The three years to respond does seem to lack something in timeliness.

  8. Harvey Reading November 22, 2019

    “+ We’ve never had a “democratically-elected” president. But we might have a democratically-impeached one. Since members of congress are elected by popular vote, impeachment is actually a more democratic process than the way we elect presidents, which is, I suppose, why it’s so rarely used. The right talks about impeachment as being a “coup.” In fact, our presidential elections more closely resemble coups of the electoral college, where two of the last three presidents have been put into power despite losing the “democratic” vote.”

    • Jim Armstrong November 22, 2019

      My favorite quote from that is:
      “What did A$AP Rocky know and when did he know it?”

  9. Craig Stehr November 22, 2019

    ~Still Life on Porch~
    Sitting in a big comfortable porch chair sipping coffee,
    Watching a completely still front area at The Magic Ranch
    With the sound of a distant chain saw, and nothing else is
    Happening here at all; the German Shepherd snoozes and
    All is well…my world is at peace and hopefully so is yours.
    A tree’s leaves changed color and are resplendant in sunlight.
    Two zen flies buzz by, the duck floats in the pond, and the
    Rooster is peck peck peck pecking! When Paramahansa
    Yogananda visited Ramana Maharshi in South India, he
    Asked why there is so much suffering in this world. The
    Maharshi explained that suffering is the spiritual path.
    Yogananda asked, “For whom?” Ramana Maharshi simply
    Beamed a saintly smile, and remained silent. ~OM Shanthi~

    Craig Louis Stehr
    22.XI.’19 @ The Magic Ranch,
    Redwood Valley, CA, USA
    Facebook: Craig Louis Stehr

  10. michael turner November 22, 2019

    “Impeach Trump and see what happens”. He’s not going to get impeached but even if he did I wouldn’t worry at all about the angry geriatrics who comprise the bulk of Trump’s support. Their uprising would consist of yelling at Fox News in between trips to the refrigerator.

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