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Valley People (January 12, 2022)

LAUREN’S at the Buckhorn is another loss to Anderson Valley’s small businesses. Buckhorn owner Natalie Matson explains what happened:

We are very sad to announce that due to circumstances beyond our control we are currently closed and have had to put many people out of work for the time being.

Lauren’s at The Buckhorn, the combination of two very popular and historic community hubs that came together just a few months ago has been operating legally on a temporary liquor license since July. This license has been in an escrow that held both the full payment amount from me and the liquor license being sold by Jean Condon, the owner of the previous bar/restaurant at this location, The Buckhorn, and the person who closed that establishment down in May 2019.

A couple of weeks ago, just a day or two before the escrow was to close after numerous delays, primarily caused by the Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC), Ms. Condon decided that there were better financial offers now available in the County and so she decided to withdraw from escrow. We believe this is illegal. It did not stop there, however, and she has since found another buyer and entered a new sale process to a bar/restaurant believed to be in Hopland.

The escrow contract has been broken and legal action is being taken by us, but in the meantime it is a very sad situation that the Valley is in danger of losing its only liquor license to another community and local folks, friends and family members among us, have lost jobs.

As stated above, I entered into a fully funded escrow months ago and have had my temporary license all this time, waiting for our ABC paperwork to be completed and the license to be transferred. Apart from getting paperwork in, I have had virtually no control over the timeline for this.

Given my financial commitments and the cost of running the business, it is not viable to go ahead with food and soft drinks only, so I am now applying for a temporary Beer and Wine License while I pursue either the liquor license we are legally committed to with Ms. Condon, or, if necessary, a different liquor license from elsewhere when one becomes available — there are only so many issued in the County. Obtaining the Beer and Wine license will hopefully take no more than 4-6 weeks.

Many thanks for everyone’s support and the good times so far enjoyed by lots of local folks and visitors too. I look forward to many more. Thank you to our wonderful community all your patience and support. I know it is unlike us to be closed at all, let alone for this long. I have not posted about it until now because I was hoping to right the situation, but we have been forced to make the very hard decision to be closed for the next few weeks.

LAST WEEK, after hearing from the opposition and market owner Lisa Walsh, the Supervisors approved the permit application to convert the Yorkville Market to a cannabis processing facility  There was unanimous support for the market but stout opposition to conversion of its premises to a marijuana business. The opposition cited crime associated with cannabis, water shortages at the site, loss of the market as a market, and the general unsuitability of that particular enterprise at that particular location.

THE SUPERVISORS, however, decided they could not legally deny owner Lisa Walsh’s decision to sell the premises to a pot operation, and following a muddled discussion the Supervisors decided to review the operation’s permit in three years, after which, if there are no problems with the business, the permit would extend for another ten years.

CSD BOARD CHAIR VALERIE HANELT’S REMARKS to the Supervisors regarding the Yorkville Market conversion permit application Jan 4, 2022:

My name is Valerie Hanelt and I am a board member on the Anderson Valley Community Services District. We received the application for the administrative permit for the Yorkville Market parcel and we needed a great deal of information to understand this process as well as understand what our input could be. 

So first and foremost, I would like to thank Mr. Vandewaters [county planning and building department] for his time and support as the AVCSD Board needed a lot of his time and attention. He was willing to zoom with us and take many calls. He was endlessly patient.

I also would like to thank the Yorkville community for sending letters to Mr. Vandewaters, and also, for many of them for attending our special meeting to hear from the public and take a final vote on the administrative permit. I am very grateful to Lisa Walsh for attending the meeting and answering many questions. 

I have been impressed, as always, by the Yorkville community, as a great deal of energy and good will was extended to the owners of the Yorkville Market to help do whatever was possible to help them bridge their economic hard times. There were even some early efforts to put together a co-op to purchase the site. A great deal of the community upheaval was trying to solve the problem of losing our market and gathering place. 

You are familiar with the Anderson Valley; we have four communities – Yorkville, Boonville, Philo, and Navarro. The loss of the Yorkville market was comparable to losing the Navarro Store or Lemon’s Market in Philo. We consulted the General Plan for Anderson Valley and while the goal of “retaining the commercial and social center of our communities” was listed, there is no legal expression supporting that goal with a zoning ordinance. 

In the matter of the administrative permit, the AVCSD Board judged that while it had the same concerns as the Yorkville community, the setting of conditions on these concerns was outside its purview. 

There is a difference between “concerns” and “conditions”. We learned that we did not have the authority to approve or deny, and we became aware that our concerns were being met under the regulations of other agencies and that our actual authority will come later during the business permit process when the site is inspected by our Fire Chief.

After a tremendous amount of discussion which included a journey through the cannabis industry (which I am sure you can appreciate was labyrinthian), the AVCSD arrived at putting a check in the box “no comment at this time” – which certainly does not seem to adequately represent our efforts. And that is why I am addressing you, as I want to convey to you how seriously we took our job of communicating with our community – the Walshes as well as all our Yorkville constituents – and making a transparent and fully informed decision. 

THE PREMISES of the Yorkville Market are small, certainly small by the standards of the vast Emerald Sun pot processing facility in Ukiah and FloCanna in Redwood Valley, and the market for the magic weed is in a wild state of flux as, we hear, regular tokers return to the street markets because the storefront weed processed by mammothly capitalized outfits like Emerald Sun is not only a lot more expensive than street-sold marijuana,, it is inferior to the weed grown by the legacy Moms and Pops. The Yorkville Market seems an unlikely venue for any kind of pot business, but with the frontiers of free enterprise always expanding…

HOWEVER all this plays out, we hope the Walsh family, and Lisa Walsh, the proprietor of the once thriving little market, come out whole. It was Covid that brought the business down, just as it’s brought so many small businesses down.

SOME of the opposition to conversion of the Yorkville Market to a pot op stems from rumors that the business is funded by a flamboyant couple then living on Elkhorn Road who came to public attention two years ago as described below:

THE NAKED LADY had called up in August of 2020: “I am the naked woman walking down the street in Yorkville. I am that person.” I remember wondering if a naked woman was presently walking down the street in Yorkville, a lightly populated area where even clothed pedestrians are a rare sight. Nope, the caller was the naked lady of two weeks ago who was taken into custody in Yorkville with Casey Hardison, the latter an international drug fugitive. 

“I want everyone to know I’m doing very well,” the naked lady said, identifying herself as Victoria Carmen Clemente, a distant relative of the famous baseball player, the late Roberto Clemente. “There was a lot of misinformation in that article [Sheriff’s Department press release],” Ms. Clemente emphasized. “I was not held against my will. We’re in a totally loving relationship. Any rumors that I’m a victim are false. What I did was me, my fault. I only complained about restraints when I was in the ambulance. When I read that report it demonized my partner and that is not true.” Ms. Clemente said she and Hardison “used to live in Yorkville. We were visiting a friend there when this happened.” Mr. Hardison at the time of the naked lady’s call was in custody in the Mendocino County Jail.

SOON after this call, Mr. Hardison wrote the following letter, further identifying himself: 

Dear Mr. Editor!

Casey Hardison here, aka Mr. International Drug Guy, the International Bigwig: though I prefer “drug wizard” or simply “OB1.”

Whilst all publicity is good publicity in Marshall McLuhan’s eyes, your article about me paints a pejorative, possibly even slanderous portrait of myself.

Yes! I do have an “indefatigable good mood,” an unfailing jolly joker live demeanor, I got the cosmic giggle decades ago one starry restless night on LSD. Hamilton already made the documentary. Now, maybe the movie.

I take issue with a few of your mistruthier representations. First, I do not have a long history of drug convictions. I have a possession of cannabis conviction in Idaho for a few grams and similar here in California from the 1990s. And I beat charges for cannabis in Idaho for a few pounds on constitutional grounds and 2017.

Yes, I am recognized internationally by the usual alphabet agencies and beyond for operating in England the “most sophisticated clandestine psychedelic drug lab in history,” although I’d give that title to Nick Sand, the legendary Orange Sunshine Acid Chemist. Nick inspired my meticulous attention to alchemist detail, purity and cleanliness.

As for your line about my lady being a possible victim of “the grinning perp” — absurd nonsense. She’s a victim of her own sacred tantrum. This time a multi-day traipse in the fields of Lodi sponsored by ketamine and Balleto Brut rose 2014 champagne. Tralala. Ketamine is quite possibly the finest powdered sleep and antidepressant known since the aimless blade of science slashed the pearly gates. And the Balleto? Well, for those who know… Mr. Advertiser.

So, what was I doing in on Elkhorn Road? Aside from fishing my lady out of her “K-hole” I was consulting on a project bringing a custom proprietary blend of cannabinoids to market as “Covid(re)Leaf” tincture and aerosolized inhaler and/or suppository. Thus, a totally lawful adventure in “healing the nation” with “the leaves of the tree” sustaining the Mendocino economy and beyond.

In June “I fucking love science” reported that 45 mice given the severe respiratory syndrome associated with Covid (AROS) were 100% cured from the inflammatory cytokine storm by inhaled Delta-9 THC, that “assassin of youth.” Cannabinoids are involved in all pathophysiology in mammals.

So please Mr. Advertiser spare me your pejorative drug abuseologies, and drug warrior rhetoric. For a “war on some people who use some drugs” is a war on people and a war on the people is a war none of us can win.

I now sit awaiting extradition/deportation to Wyoming for the conveyance of cannabis. Who’d have thunk that one could be arrested for cannabis the days? I could have drove with that with much weed on my dashboard here in California without consequences.

When I drove off in Wyoming that fateful day two years ago, I believed I is was being robbed by pirates, unidentified on the high seas. But their Admiralty Jurisdiction is of no force and will be the undoing of the war on some people who prefer some drugs. This is not the high seas, this be Wyoming, one of the last bastions of true liberty in these United States.

So take me there O Lord for I look forward to this quest for the Holy Grail, my quest to end the “war on cognitive liberty,” the right to alter my mental functioning as I see fit, provided no harm to others results. With this and other rights retained by the people, I will end the war.

No one was harmed on Elkhorn Road although some laughs were had. Does anybody remember laughter? Our folly is that 2500 years after Plato we have still not fully integrated the Pharmakon: Those remedies, those poisons, those magical substances we know and love.

We had a psychedelic hootenanny on Elkhorn. We saw infinity in one hour. After the ecstasy, the laundry.

I am charged with selling a few pounds of Mendo Outdoor to that Wyoming undercover and scooting off with their money to their chagrin, to their embarrassment. It’s time for us all to strip down, get naked in the garden and do the laundry.

So I thank you Mr. Advertiser for this opportunity to state my case! May it please this Court, let there be light, let there be justice, though the heavens may fall.


Casey William Hardison, POW

Mendocino County Jail, 501 Low Gap Road, Ukiah CA 95482

THAT was then and now is now. Are the vivid Hardisons the new owners of the Yorkville Market?

CHECKING with Superintendent Simson this morning, the super Super reports that although attendance and staffing is down a little after the long holiday, not to mention the ravages of covid, when she did a “walk through” this morning staff was at their posts, some of them at two posts to fill in for absent colleagues, and the Good Ship AV Unified was sailing on. The Superintendent praised staff, students and student families for managing so well in a very difficult time.

THE COMPANY KITCHEN, PHILO: We are hiring! We are looking to expand our team as well as our hours! We are currently looking to fill all positions! Please come down to the restaurant during our business hours (starting this Friday) or message us here. Thank you!

RENTAL WANTED: Locally employed, mature writer seeking quiet, private parking place in Anderson Valley for 30-foot 2018 self-contained trailer to work on artistic projects. Please consider renting me a little slice of your “North 40.” I can pay a little cash, or am willing to negotiate trade for legitimate services. Call Katherine at 707 272-3301. Please leave a message. 


We have been able to obtain individual rapid tests for all registered students. This is in addition to our scheduled pool testing on Monday and Wednesday of next week. Families of students may pick up a test for their student at the following times and location. It is recommended that your student test Sunday evening or Monday morning before school. Please remember if your student is exhibiting any cold or flu symptoms to keep them home. If they have a positive test, please contact the school office.

Friday: Between 8-11 at the district office. Please do not come in, just drive up and honk at someone will bring a test out to you. Saturday: Jr./Sr. High School 10-12 at the office Sunday: Elementary School 10-12 at the office.

We also have pooled testing scheduled, which is PCR, on Monday and Wednesday with follow up testing as needed.

Take care,

Louise Simson

Superintendent Anderson Valley Unified School District

Cell: 707-684-1017

REBECCA JOHNSON: Marking time. Today I made a pilgrimage to Hendy Woods an old growth redwood forest near my studio in Philo CA. It is an auspicious place a poignant reminder of change as we turn the page to a new year. 23 years ago I visited this redwood forest with my parents. They had come to see what my dad called my California adventure. While walking in the grove of ancient trees we discussed what a mammoth redwood might sound like when it falls. At that moment one fell! About 30 feet from us! It was astounding like dynamite branches flying the earth shaking! I visit the fallen giant when it summons me, somewhere in my subconscious I feel the call. A good reminder of time passing. My dad died 20 years ago my California adventure continues. Happy New Year everyone. 2022.


Theft on Gschwend Road. Philo. 16 ft green trailer. Yoga studio interior with built in propane stove. Taken between Dec. 31st-Jan 4th. Looking for leads to bring back home. Very sad to think this would be a new reality. We are very trusting for a reason. We love and trust our community. Also: All PO boxes on Gschwend road down to 128 were stolen from during the same period.

Please keep your eyes and ears open. 

Please let me know if you saw this trailer being towed in the Anderson Valley area. It is a Salvage vehicle, has no lights, papers or registration and an eyewitness said they saw it going South towards Yorkville on Dec. 31st around 5 to 5:30. It is brown-green camo colors, 1965 Scotsman. It is completely empty, paneled, carpeted with a white wool, with my Yoga gear,  and a steel Propane stove mounted on the wall. It is a vintage trailer, my Yoga studio, and was taken from Gschwend Road in the broad daylight it seems. (After 4 pm Dec. 31st)I am actively looking to find my trailer and who did this. It is not ok. I will offer a reward and my gratitude if you can help me. Anonymity is guaranteed. I have posted in Valley Hub, Elk and Mendocino Trading platforms, Craigslist in Mendocino and Sonoma County. This is in addition to having all of our mail stolen for the 4th time from the mail-boxes on HWY 128.

Thank you Very much, Kira Brennan,, 707-321-8644   

AV SENIOR CENTER: No silent auction with the drive-thru crab feed but we have this great Warriors tickets raffle prize. (Feb. 16, 7pm, Chase Center. (These four tickets are a $2,000 value!) $5 per raffle ticket. No need to be present to win! Message me or call the senior center at 895-3609. Purchase tickets at the senior center or at the crab feed. Or call 895-3609.

IN PREPARATION for upcoming winter storms, our partners at the Boonville CALFIRE station have sand and sandbags available onsite for the public. If you are in a flood area or need sand bags to fend off winter rains impacts, stop by the Boonville CALFIRE Station on any Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday (during the winter months). Sand and sand bags are free on a first come first serve basis.

THIS NOTE inspired me to speculate if like-minded Boonville people might spruce up our dusty, depleted hamlet: “A group of us has been working on the Mendocino Post Office landscaping for several months. We’ve decided to set the second Sunday of each month at 11:00 as a regular meeting time. We usually work for 2 hours or so. So this Sunday, January 9 at 11:00 is our next work day. Please join us!”

GEEZER TIP: If I were younger I’d get a knee (singular) replacement, but I prefer to live with it rather than take time off to get it done. I get by as is, along with an occasional shot of steroid, which helps short-term if the medical ace manages to put the needle in the right place, which seems to be, in my experience, hit or miss. Lately, a couple of times a day, I beat back the minor pain accompanying my arthritic knee with Voltaren, a “topical gel” designed specially for arthritic joints. When a friend said the stuff actually works I ordered a try out tube. It does work. For maybe an hour, and doesn’t work for me at all for the arthritis in my hands. But I’ve found that Voltarin is especially helpful on the nights you’re awakened by jolts to the knees. Slap some on and in no time you’ve returned to Dreamland.


Friday, January 21st, 10 to 11 am

The Mosswood Market— Join us for a short volunteer training and we’ll treat you to a coffee or tea - learn more about the Anderson Valley Village and how you can give back to the elders of our community. The work of volunteers is vital to our mission of supporting seniors as they age in place, providing all manner of help, from basic ch ores, transportation, tech support and errands to check-in calls and visits to skilled services. It’s up to you how, and how often, to volunteer. Because we are working with a vulnerable population, we require our volunteers to have the COVID vaccine, thank you (please bring your card). And if you would like to be a volunteer driver, please bring your Driver's License and proof of insurance card. Volunteer applications are available at the training, Senior Center, Health Center and/or our website: RSVP with the coordinator -  thank you! Anica Williams, Anderson Valley Village Coordinator Cell: 707-684-9829 Email:

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Hendy Woods activities —  Free Entry to Hendy Woods State Park for local residents On the Second Sunday of every month in 2022, the Hendy Woods Community  is covering the Hendy Woods State Park’s Day Use fee ($8) for local residents from the following communities: Yorkville, Boonville, Philo, Navarro, Comptche and Elk - Know your zip code. Enjoy a free visit to the park on us and stroll the old growth redwood groves and beautiful meadows, hike the trails, and unwind along the river! Note: Day use is from sun up to 1 hour after sunset  

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Invasive Plant Removal - Volunteers Needed!  Saturday January 22nd 10 am to 12 pm Hendy Woods State Park Please join us in restoring natural habitats by removing invasive plant species (mainly poison hemlock and Dock). Take local action and be rewarded with FREE entry to the park. ~ rain cancels ~ Meet at the Day Use Area of Hendy Woods State Park Dress in layers, bring gardening gloves with rubber palms, shovel or hand tools (some will be available) & a picnic lunch.  

Want to join our great team and support your wonderful park? We are always looking for motivated Volunteers to staff the Hendy Woods Visitor Center, remove invasive plant species and lead forest walks! Interested?  

Contact: Hendy Woods Community Web: Phone: 707-895-3716 Email: Park Website:

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