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Valley People (Jan 7, 2015)

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: The beautifully remodeled and just re-opened Yorkville Market, managed by a most delightful young woman named Lisa Walsh Hale of the Judson Hale Winery family. The enterprise is part market, part tasting room, and just getting underway, seriously underway — Ms. Walsh opens at 6am with perfect coffee and an array of fresh pastries, making Yorkville the perfect early morning stop for all of us on the road before the dawn has cracked. When I stopped in last Tuesday, the place was humming. None other than the mayor of Yorkville himself, Larry Carr Sr., had popped in for a cuppa. It's been a long time since Yorkville had a center, and now it has one that had me temporarily disoriented. "Where am I?" The Yorkville Market is that nice.

ANDERSON VALLEY'S undefeated Panther football team dominated the small school all star team as thoroughly as they dominated small school football this season. And, except for graduating senior Jesse Owens, the core group of players, all of whom would start at much larger schools, will be back for another full season. Mendocino can start preparing themselves for another thumping next season.

NCL III FOOTBALL Honoring the All-League Best for 2014

Offensive MVP: Cesar Soto (Jr) Anderson Valley.

1st Team: Will Lemons  (Jr), Erin Perez (Jr), Jared Johnston (Jr), Alejandro Gutierrez (Jr), Jesse Owens (Sr), Tony Pardini (Soph).

IT HAS BEEN a banner year for Anderson Valley sports. The football team went undefeated, the soccer team won another area wide championship and the volleyball team, perennially dominant on the Northcoast, also racked up another area title.

ANDERSON VALLEY'S All League All Stars:


Co MVP: Alex Farber (Jr) Anderson Valley

1st Team: Riley Lemons (Soph) Anderson Valley

2nd Team: Sarah Kreienhop (Jr) Anderson Valley

Honorable Mention: Jauna Manriquez (Sr) Anderson Valley

Boys Soccer

1st Team: Abraham Sanchez (Jr) Anderson Valley

Moises Segura (Sr) Anderson Valley

Fernando Ferreyra (Jr) Anderson Valley

Isidro Tovar (Soph) Anderson Valley

Girls Soccer

Honorable Mention: Grecia Herrera (Sr) Anderson Valley

FOUND KEYS. A large double-loop set of ranch keys was found hanging on a hook in front of the Farmhouse Mercantile store Saturday night. The thing is complete with padlocks, hooks and miscellaneous gate keys. To claim them, talk to the friendly folks at Mosswood Market (morning) or Farmhouse Mercantile (afternoon).

HERE'S ONE we're still wondering about. Our New Year's Eve scanner crackled to life with a report that said a sixty-something male was hanging from a tree branch with his lower torso submerged in a stream. This dramatic visual, spotted by a passerby, was occurring in the area of milemarker 48 off Highway 128. The guy had tumbled over a steep embankment and was clinging to the branch, and had been clinging to it for some number of hours.

BOONVILLE FIRE CHIEF AVILIA said our local emergency services people were called to rescue a man who had fallen into a creek. “Arrived to find that the patient had been in the creek bed for several hours complaining of a neck injury. Due to the possible injuries incurred, and steep hillsides creating difficult access, AVFD with the help of Cal Fire had to extricate him several hundred feet up the embankment using rescue ropes and a rescue sled. The patient, still not identified, was flown by CALSTAR to the trauma center in Santa Rosa.”

THE WYANT FAMILY of Boonville is justly proud that Clint Wyant, the son of Rick Wyant and grandson of Frank Wyant, has been promoted to detective at the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office, and Jason Caudillo, Rick Wyant's son-in-law has moved up the ranks to lieutenant and supervisor of the Sheriff’s Central Sector (Ukiah and Anderson Valley).

Wyant & Caudillo
Wyant & Caudillo

LOTS OF PEOPLE have remarked on the abundance of mushrooms popping up after the long-awaited rains, an abundance I can't help but notice myself on afternoon hikes through the east hills above Boonville. They are everywhere, and of a variety I don't remember seeing in prior years. Like a lot of locals, I used to take the mystery 'rooms to the late Bobby Glover, a genius mycologist who cnuld ideotify them at a glance. Does Bobby have a local successor?

NASH MILL'S most exciting residents, the Plowrights, were arrested Friday night by the CHP when they were pulled over at Highway 128 and Peachland Road. Granma Plowright, 70, and her wayward son, Thomas Plowright, 47, were both charged with possession of: methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, two controlled substances, a forged driver's license, transportation of marijuana for sale. (Come to think of it, Gran may still be walkin' the wild side herself.)

The Plowrights

BACK A WAYS, on May 6th (2010), an Obama-size motorcade, reinforced by a hovering helicopter, passed through Boonville on its way to 3500 Little Mill Creek Road, Philo, the home of Thomas Plowright III, then 42, of San Jose, and Thomas's wife Teresa Plowright, then 50, of Manteca.

THE PLOWRIGHTS had come to local attention three weeks earlier when deputies discovered a tractor stuck in Little Mill Creek where Little Mill flows, or attempts to flow, through a neighbor’s property. The creek is a year-round blue line stream in which much local volunteer labor has been invested in a vain effort to bring it back to its once fecund life as a major salmon and steelhead stream. It appeared that the Plowrights had been attempting to build a catchment pond to irrigate an outdoor pot field when their tractor became mired in the streambed.

THE COUPLE was arrested a few weeks later in 2010 “without incident” by that Obama-size task force composed of representatives of an array of police forces and regulatory agencies. The raid team found several pieces of stolen equipment, including a cement truck, apparently taken from a San Jose construction site. These items were valued at approximately $80,000. The raid team said they also found burglary tools, marijuana, methamphetamine, and paraphernalia related to drug manufacture at the property in addition to numerous firearms including a fully automatic assault weapon. Additionally, items and chemicals consistent with the manufacture of methamphetamine were discovered along with an “explosive device.” The Highway Patrol's hazardous devices technicians were summoned from their Sacramento office to render the apparatus harmless “by counter charging the device.”

THE PLOWRIGHTS were booked into the Mendocino County Jail on the following charges: manufacturing a controlled substance, possession of a substance to manufacture methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine, possession of a device for injection or smoking a controlled substance, violation of probation, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, committing a felony while armed with a firearm, possession of an assault weapon, possession of ammunition by a person who is prohibited. Bail was set at $75,000 for each Plowright which, even given so many felony charges, translates merely as “semi-serious.”

THE UPSHOT of all these 2010 charges was a few months in the County Jail for Thomas and a period of house arrest at the Plowright headquarters in Campbell, Santa Clara County. It took a long time to sort everything out because David Eyster, then in private practice, had represented the Plowrights; then Eyster became DA, meaning a conflict of interest, meaning that the State Attorney General took control of the case, meaning it all just kinda went away over a period of years.

BUT YOU GOTTA hand it to the Plowrights. They just keep keepin' on, and here they are again!

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