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Valley People (September 30, 2023)

A MEMORIAL SERVICE for John Burroughs of Boonville will be held on Sunday, October 22, 2023 from noon to 3pm at the AV Vets Hall/Senior Center. 

John Burroughs

Mr. Burroughs died September 6, 2023 in Boonville at the age of 87. Potluck.

A FAIR WORKER WAS FOUND DEAD of an apparent drug overdose at the Boonville Fairgrounds Friday morning before the Fair's noon opening. A second worker was found unconscious, but was revived by a combination of CPR, medical assistance and narcan. Both casualties were transient employees of the rides’ proprietor. Authorities would not confirm the drug overdose until an autopsy can be conducted, but given that the second casualty was revived by narcan drug overdoses seem likely. The deceased, a young woman, was found to possess drug paraphernalia and what appeared to be narcotics. The rides were ordered re-inspected by law enforcement, delaying the carnival’s usual noon opening for three hours.. The carnival company rep was fully cooperative with law enforcement as an investigation of the staff, the equipment and the grounds was conducted. By 3pm Sheriff’s deputies had cleared the scene and declared the carnival safe to open. 


[1] The Mendo fetty meth proved deadly again. Everyday ODs. Everyday reported ODs with Narcan used. Here we sit #1 in California for OD deaths. The treatment centers available are a mess maybe with a 1% success rate. Millions upon millions poured in to local treatment and supportive services with dismal if any results. Carnival workers working to survive vs laying around. The fair circuits drive a billion dollar industry often overlooked or not mentioned until something like this happens. RIP lost soul.

[2] Looks like the coroner can skip the toxicology report since you know the fatal formulation of the OD and that it was acquired in Mendo instead of arriving with the carnival. But you might be right. I just don’t think we know at this point. Curious also how you know there’s only a 1% recovery rate for treatment centers despite pouring in “millions and millions” of dollars. A major problem is there aren’t enough treatment beds. In Mendo, Ford St. Project has a successful treatment program but the Board of Supervisors has blocked funding for them to expand.

[3] How does anyone know Ford St. Project is successful? As far as can be seen, does any treatment center even keep records about relapses at all? Length of time to relapse? Are there any scientific guides specifying what can be called a success? The only one I came up with is for substituting methadone for the illegal drug.

[4] Addicts need to change habits and lifestyle, not just get “clean and sober.” Rehab places don’t have the resources to fix that.

[5] Hoofbeats could be zebras or even unicorns, but they’re usually horses. Chances are high that a carnival worker (or more than one) scored upon arrival in Mendo and that these two ODs weren’t expecting exactly what they got. Could have been laced meth. Could have been laced heroin. Could be simply not cut as much as they were used to. There are many possibilities but fentanyl in one way or another seems quite likely.

AN ANDERSON VALLEY FIRE STRIKE TEAM was deployed for almost three weeks at the Smith Rivers Complex fire in Del Norte County, returning on September 7, AV Fire Chief Andres Avila reported this week. The locals spent most of their time doing “structure protection” as well as helping with firebreaks and fire suppression on the perimeter. The Smith Rivers complex fire was started by a cluster of lightning strikes on August 15 and at last count was up to almost 100,000 acres in size. That fire complex including the Anvil fire, Bedrock fire and Lookout fire are the main sources of smoke blanketing much of northern California this week. Fire crews are hoping for preliminary containment by the end of this week, but it will still be burning for days after that.

CHIEF AVILA also reported that ambulance call volume is up in the Valley because “Anecdotally, [responders] are finding that some people are having a harder time getting appointments with their doctors, and then resort to calling 911 due to their declining condition, or perhaps even out of frustration in receiving needed care.” Ambulance Manager Clay Eubank also speculated that the local increase in Ambulance call volume could be related to the increasing number of elderly Anderson Valley residents.

(Mark Scaramella)

SEEMED LIKE every time I set out to walk down to the Fair, I got sidetracked, but  I did enjoy the parade, which had many more entries this year than last. My spectator crew was briefly mesmerized by the sight of a pneumatic Mexican woman with large gifts front and back clad in see-through tights leaving not much at all to the male imagination. I felt like applauding but restrained myself. This next comment is certain to be construed by the highly evolved righteous ones as both racist and sexist, but I'm always aware around Mexican women of their female-ness. With gringo women, at least the ones over thirty, you're aware something is standing in front of you that could be a woman or maybe a hockey stick.

I WAS SURPRISED by a float dedicated to the presidential candidacy of RFK Jr. The Democrats are of course putting in a lot of OT devising ways to keep him out of their dependably rigged “debates,” which Jr would easily win because he's smart, articulate and his Kennedy-ness also makes him kinda charismatic. He's very good on the issues except for his unsupported vaxx opinions and, natch, the usual blind support for Israeli fascism that comes with the Democratic Party in its presently degraded state.

BILL KIMBERLIN: Went to the fair this year in Boonville and captured a couple of images I thought were interesting.

The black Chevrolet convertible is "right hand" drive. The 1956 Mercury Montclair belongs to Bill Holcomb.

The sign is just an old sign.


The Bob Ayres Big Band

Saturday, 30 September, 7 ~ 9 pm

at the new Brewpub in the old Sears building in the warm,

squishy heart of Fort Bragg:

Tall Guy Brewing & Taproom — a nice big space, room to dance! Also: dog friendly!

No cover! 

ROSSI HARDWARE’S current window display features an interesting array of equipment and photographs of logging’s heyday. Not to be missed.

THE STATE declared the Navarro’s silted-up, fish-free, summer-scabrous waters fully appropriated more than twenty years ago, but does anybody in the multiple non-profits allegedly monitoring the Navarro actually walk it and its feeder streams to ensure that water thieves and chemical runoff isn't at work against the embattled river's health and well-being?

PRELIMINARY NUMBERS from the big Boonville Skatepark Fall Fundraiser last Saturday have it that the project brought in an amazing $19k in just that one event. Not much was spent on the event which featured local music, donated food and drinks, an auction of skate decks painted by student artists, and a raffle of donated goods and gear. 

I CALLED Felines of Philo for assistance with a feral cat infestation of the ava's work site in central Boonville. Every morning, the instant I open my door, I get bull-rushed by a dozen or so starving cats. I tried trapping them but they're too smart for the trap, or I’m too maladroit to set the Have A Heart properly. 

NO CALL BACK from Philo Felines, but thinking over the message I left for them I'm afraid I may have sounded a little too frantic, a little too threatening when I said I might have to resort to shooting the little beasts in mass mercy killings if no help is offered. I’ll even settle for sensible advice. Your continued silence, Cat Ladies, could mean that the blood of these innocent felines could be on your hands!

TAKING A BREAK from Big Think to return to local, Y Ranch residents are alarmed that the Santa Rosa realtor handling a sale property is a little too casual with keys to the place. Anybody who expresses an interest in buying gets a key, which has resulted in poachers and who knows who else doing their various things on the remote forty. 

(THE Y RANCH is a subdivision between Boonville and Yorkville. Most interestingly, it abuts, on its northeast end, the archaeological treasure commonly known as the Spirit Rock, a giant boulder covered with ancient Native American messages at what was once a trail linking Lake County with the Mendocino Coast. A wacky hippie mystic built a house there but the commune he envisioned never came off. The site is as idyllic as prehistoric sites can be — a large meadow at the headwaters of Feliz Creek rich in old oaks. The beauty is in stark contrast to lower Feliz as it passes beneath Highway 101 at Hopland, a denuded, desert-dry river bed that looks like one of those stream beds on Mars. I've seen vague references to the Spirit Rock area serving as a Native American sanctuary from slave-takers and soul-savers, the latter Spanish soldiers dispatched from the missions at early Sonoma and San Rafael.) 

THE COUNTY’S GENERAL SERVICES AGENCY reports that they entered a memorandum of understanding with a caretaker for the Indian Creek Park Campground in Philo in July 2023. “The caretaker will be onsite through the remainder of the season which ends the last weekend in October. The caretaker is tasked with greeting and assisting visitors and the public in a friendly, helpful, and courteous manner. They answer questions, remind visitors to register at the fee collection station, and explain applicable rules and regulations. They perform routine cleaning of the restrooms and campsites and report any issues or potential problems that require staff attention. We are thrilled to have somebody on site once again.” 

This is good news. At least until October. (Mark Scaramella)

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