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Valley People (July 28, 2021)


Hello Everyone! My name is Noah Sanchez and I'm a member of the Anderson Valley FFA. I am 16 years old and this is my third year in FFA. I am taking a market swine project to this year's fair. My pig is a purebred Poland China born right here in Mendocino County. I named her Clover. I have spent a lot of time with Clover this summer, I have walked her, gave her baths, and fed her. The profits I will receive from this year's auction will be deposited right into my college savings. I will be showing and selling Clover in the Mendocino Junior Livestock Auction. This year the auction is online. You can register to bid at

Noah Sanchez

I would like to invite you to bid on my pig, Friday August 6th though Saturday August 7th. I hope you have a chance to view the animals and also see my pig.

Thank you for your support! Sincerely, Noah Sanchez

* * *

My name is Jack Spacek and I live in Yorkville, Ca, on our family ranch. We raise cattle, sheep, and grow our own hay. I attend Anderson Valley High School. I am representing Anderson Valley FFA.

I enjoy riding my dirt bike, hunting, fishing and working on the ranch with my Dad and Grandfather. I am raising a market lamb for my FFA project this year. My lambs name is Joe. I started my project when I got my lamb on March 22. I monitor feed, water and exercise my lamb daily.

Jack Spacek

I will be selling my lamb at the Mendocino County Junior Livestock auction at the Redwood Empire Fair. The Auction will be online. The sale opens Friday August 6th at 3:00pm. The sale closes August 7th at 6pm. Please log on to to register to bid. Follow the prompts to the auction site. The auction preview will begin in August 2nd. Please help support the Junior Livestock Auction.

I hope to use the funds from my project to help pay for my college education. 

Thank you for your support,

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Hi my name is August Spacek. I am 15 years old and I live in Yorkville, California. I live with my parents and three brothers on our family ranch. We raise sheep, cows and hay. I am a fourth generation rancher. I attend Anderson Valley High School. I belong to Anderson Valley FFA. I love living on our family ranch in Yorkville. My hobbies include motorcycle riding, hunting, fishing and restoring vintage chainsaws with my great grandfather, Ralf.

My market lambs name is Jorge. I got my market lamb in March and have worked to get him ready for the 2021 Mendocino County Junior Livestock Show and Auction. During this time I have monitored his feed and water intake. Exercised him daily. I have also groomed / sheared and trimmed his feet on a regular basis.

August Spacek

I will be selling my lamb at the Mendocino County Junior Livestock auction at the Redwood Empire Fair. The Auction will be online. The sale opens Friday August 6th at 3:00pm. The sale closes August 7th at 6pm. Please log on to to register to bid. Follow the prompts to the auction site. The auction preview will begin in August 2nd. Please support the Junior Livestock Auction.

I plan on saving the money I make from my market lamb for my education, so that I can pursue a career in ranching and agriculture.

Thank you for your support,

* * *

My name is Kellie Crisman and I'm 15 years old. This is my second year raising a meat pen of rabbits for the Redwood Empire Fair Junior Livestock Auction. I've been part of the Anderson Valley FFA for two years and have been showing rabbits for a year and a half. I've also been given opportunities to show the Ag Department's rabbits. The breeds I've worked with are Mini Rex, Dutch, and New Zealand. In the future I'd like to be raising Dwarf Hotots.

Kellie Crisman

Come Join me at the Redwood Empire Fair virtual Junior Livestock Auction. Sales open on August 6th at 3:00 pm and close at 6:00 pm August 7th. Register to bid at 

For more information visit

Thank you for your support

WORSE & WORSER. Marshall Newman Writes: “Navarro River flow today (Thursday, 7/22) stands at 0.16 cubic feet per second, essentially a dribble. This is the worst ever for this date by a country mile; the previous minimum flow recorded for this date in the 70 years of records- in 2014 - was 0.73 CFS.”

SO WORSER that even Marshall despairs: “Today (Sunday7/25) Navarro River flow is 0.06 cubic feet per second, essentially nothing. The previous minimum for this date, in 2014, was 0.62 cfs. This for a watershed that drains 315 square miles. I will stop sending these to you for a while. The numbers and implications are too depressing.”



  • Michael Warych, Superintendent
  • Kim Campbell, English Teacher
  • Kelley Hiatt, Special Education Instructional Aide

New Hires to the District:

  • Louise Simson, Superintendent
  • Cymbree Thomas-Swett, Elementary Principal
  • Gabrielle Visco, Special Education Teacher

We have other employees that have shifted into different roles. We do have some positions open, so if anyone is interested, have them give us a call. 

JULY BEING quiet time for the schools, school business nevertheless continues. Our new superintendent, the energetic Louise Simson, writes: “The Anderson Valley Unified Board of Trustees met on Tuesday, July 20 via a virtual link. The meeting highlights included: Celebration of the success of the summer school programs at both sites. Creation of a high school intervention teacher to support students returning to school in the post-pandemic environment funded by the ESSER funding. Approval of carpet replacement in portions of the high school. Discussion of a return to live Board meetings on August 10 with an electronic option for participants wishing to view on-line. Discussion of the plans for re-opening of full in-person school at both sites for all students on August 17. Approval of a Facilities Use Agreement to facilitate the expansion of the Health Center. Looking forward to a wonderful year ahead!”


We are now open all weekend! Open Friday 2-5pm AND Saturday and Sunday 11am-3pm!

Fruit this week includes blueberries, peaches, and plums! We will be offering vegetables including New Girl tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, GREEN BEANS!, Padron peppers, NEW potatoes, lettuce, spring onions, celery, eggplant, chard, beets, turnips, cucumbers, carrots, cabbage, dill, summer squash and more! We will also have fresh flower bouquets, our 2020 olive oil, quince apple butter, dried prunes and raisins. All items are certified biodynamic and delicious! Follow us on Instagram for updates @filigreenfarm or email Annie at with any questions. We accept cash, credit card, check, and EBT/SNAP (Market Match available too!)

AV FIRE CHIEF Andres Avila reported Monday that the small wildland fire in Yorkville on Friday was contained mainly through the active help of the Yorkville locals who somehow kept it from crossing Highway 128 despite the 10mph or so wind that could have spread it up the nearby hill across the highway quickly. By the time the fire department crews arrived the brush fire was spotting in the area including in a vineyard but those were also kept small by locals. The burn area ended up being about an acre when it was contained and extinguished. Avila said it was not clear what started it, but it was in the area of a burn pile being accumulated for a winter burn. 

WE CERTAINLY AGREE with the caller who said he thinks the abandoned nursery at the Philo end of Anderson Valley Way is an ongoing fire hazard, the second most visible fire hazard in the Valley after Ricard's kindling pile at the south end of Boonville. 

WE RESEARCHED ownership of the nursery property after hearing that it belongs to one of the Cakebread family members  based in Napa County. Winery people being strictly Whitey-Tighty personality types we doubt a Cakebreader would simply sit on the place without maintaining it. Ricard, of course, gets the all-time Mendo Fire Trap Award. He's been allowed to maintain his hazard for 50 years.

CAKEBREAD does indeed own the abandoned nursery at the Philo end of Anderson Valley Way. The last story I heard about the former nursery enterprise was that an out-of-the-area tweaker-dude somehow managed to briefly grab title to what had been a viable business under the savvy management of Sarah Songbird of the Singing Sarahs. Then, suddenly, the gates were padlocked, and behind the gates lots of plants, fertilizers, and miscellaneous garden supplies were simply left to rot and die. Get on it, Cakes. You're seriously frosting us in your neglect of your property.

AT WEDNESDAY NIGHT’S COMMUNITY SERVICES DISTRICT Board meeting, we asked AV Fire Chief Andres Avila to consider sending a courtesy notice to Cakebread Cellars in Rutherford (Napa) County — owners of the overgrown abandoned nursery at the end of Anderson Valley Way — asking them to do something about the obvious fire hazard at their neglected property. Chief Avila declined saying 1. He didn’t have the necessary authority to enforce the applicable fire code because the District hadn’t adopted that particular section of the fire code, and 2. He didn’t want to point fingers at people, apparently worried that other people might ask for similar notices for other local fire hazards. We argued these are dangerous fire times and that a courtesy notice/request wasn’t pointing fingers and that the District should consider adopting the applicable section of the fire code — we thought they already had — since there’s no other effective avenue besides the local fire department to abate local fire hazards. (Calfire is nearly impossible to reach and so is the County, both of these options were mentioned by the Chief but without any specific contact person or complaint process.) Board Chair Valerie Hanelt noted the Chief’s “hesitancy” and left it at that.

UPDATE: Chief Avila also said Monday that he had called the Cakebread people in Rutherford (Napa County) and they said they simply hadn’t been aware of the fire hazard at the old nursery at the end of AV Way where the property had become overgrown with long dry grass and other wooden leftovers of the abandoned nursery. The Cakebread people quickly and courteously agreed that they’d be on it by the end of this week. Good for them.

ON THE OTHER HAND, the District’s letter to the Sheriff, CHP and Caltrans last month about dangerous speeding through Boonville and the rest of Anderson Valley elicited positive responses from all three agencies.

SHERIFF MATT KENDALL replied at some length with a three-page letter, agreeing that there’s a problem with heedless driving in the Anderson Valley, mentioning that he has personally conducted traffic stops in the Valley. He also said he’d urged CHP to increase their presence in the Valley. Kendall added that he’s having trouble maintaining staffing levels with fewer qualified deputy candidates available, although there’s at least one young candidate from Boonville who will begin training soon. A pending “rural communities grant” may also help with manpower shortages.

CHP CAPTAIN C.R. Leonard also replied to The Valley's traffic concerns, saying he had spoken with locals about the problem and has asked his officers to increase their presence in Boonville and the Valley generally, especially during high traffic periods.

AND CALTRANS said they’d conduct a signage review in the Valley on Highway 128 “in the coming weeks.”

ANDERSON VALLEY ENGINE 7471, with local volunteer firefighters Ben Glaus and Abraham Sanchez from Anderson Valley, and Richard Hunt, a Comptche volunteer firefighter, was dispatched on July 11 to help fight the rapidly growing “Dixie” fire in the Sierras northeast of Chico. Chief Avila said that there are financial benefits to the District (Calfire pays for such assignments, personnel and equipment), along with experience gained and assistance provided, but that he only dispatches local strike teams when they don’t detract from the District’s own firefighting capacity.

THE ANDERSON VALLEY COMMUNITY SERVICES DISTRICT has posted a powerpoint presentation about the proposed Boonville clean water project on their website:

 (Mark Scaramella) 

A LOCAL TASTING ROOM  ran out of water with a big event scheduled for last weekend. Its wells are dry, and there's no water in the creek they've been draining for years. Emergency pleas from management located a very expensive hurry-up consignment.

THE LAST TIME I hiked the length of Anderson Creek there were many, many straws in the water, a number of which did not, so far as I was able to determine, enjoy historic riparian rights to it. The only person I know to register a serious complaint about illegal water taking, the redoubtable David Severn, had his complaint followed up on, and the thief, a wine-spa guy, paid a twenty thousand dollar fine.

AND MUCH Mendo water never gets down out of the hills to water what's left of our watersheds because it's diverted upstream by the intoxicants industries, marijuana and wine grapes, not to mention the thousands of people living in the hills where not many people lived prior to 1960. 

JUST IN FROM CONGRESSMAN HUFF AND PUFF ($400,000 for Anderson Valley will buy maybe a third of a small house)

An affordable housing initiative in Anderson Valley is just one local project that may (sic) receive federal funding as part of the Community Project Funding process included in the House Appropriations Committee’s Fiscal Year 2022 funding bills, the office of Rep. Jared Huffman (D -San Rafael) announced this week.

“In my role in Congress, it’s an honor to work side-by-side with local governments, community organizations, and non-profits as we strive to improve the lives of people in our district. Folks here on the ground know our communities’ needs best, and the Community Project Funding process allowed them to give recommendations on what the federal budget should prioritize,” Huffman is quoted as saying in a press release.

The release also notes that, “beginning this year, the U.S. House of Representatives allowed members of Congress to recommend specific projects in their communities for direct funding through federal appropriations. The Fiscal Year 2022 Appropriations Committee bills include the following projects submitted by Huffman:

Anderson Valley Affordable Housing Initiative, Mendocino County, $400,000: The funding would be used for the Anderson Valley Housing Association (AVHA) and the Anderson Valley Health Center (AVHC), who are partnering to provide affordable housing in Anderson Valley. AVHA and AVHC have a longstanding commitment to the health and wellbeing of the underserved population in the valley including those under 200% of poverty level and seasonal farm workers. There is a significant shortage of affordable housing in this rural valley and AVHA has over 40 individuals on a waiting list for affordable housing.

FRIDAY EVENING the following notice appeared on a local law enforcement incident log:

Update Code 4, 1 Detained 

Public Safety - Avoid The Area


12500 Block of Anderson Valley Way/Cemetery 

Prior to 5:34pm 07/23/21

5:38pm Code 4, one detained.

On 253/mm 2. 

Unable to get status on officer.

5:34pm Compliant but refusing to get out of vehicle 

5:34pm One at Gun Point asking for back up to come quicker. Responding Code.

WE ASKED the Sheriff if there was any more info on this incident. Sheriff Kendall replied: “It was a 5150 call. The victim went into a short stand off and deputies called for cover. Because of the nature I don’t think I can disclose the name of the subject. But I’ll get some clarification on that.”

TURNED OUT the above was a man distraught at the loss of his mate, not that she died but that she left him.

JUST IN from the County: Indian Creek Park is at last open for day use and camping.

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