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Valley People (June 4, 2014)

SHEILA DAWN TRACY writes from Comptche, “The KZYX board election count for Paul Lambert — 310 votes/41% of the total vote — never made it into the printed version of last week's article. Please make note of it in this week's edition. Apologies for any confusion caused by the omission.”

AMONG THE 21 students who have completed their 420 hours of administrative and clinical medical assistant training through the Career Technical Education program sponsored by the Mendocino County Office of Education, we find our very own and uber-capable Erica Lemons.

COMPTCHE HISTORIAN KATY TAHJA would like to invite everyone to share a bit of history on Fathers Day and attend the Comptche Volunteer Fire Department’s Chicken BBQ at FireHouse Park on Flynn Creek Road. Saturday Sunday! This marks the 50th year of CVFD’s protection of the community and this dinner has been being held for decades. Good food, live music, kids activities, a raffle and fun in the sun from noon to 4pm. Please leave the dogs at home.

MAUREEN BOWMAN WRITES: “AV TENNIS COURTS A GREAT ASSET Maureen Bowman Tennis players and supportive residents gathered at the tennis courts once again for a “completion” dedication. We now have a curtain to separate two of the courts, a new entrance gate so all courts may be directly accessed, two new signs, and a storage area for all of the balls and rackets donated for the kids. Oh yes, and some items to bring out for tournaments so spectators may sit in the shade and be comfortable. Now you know why we all felt such an asset was created, not just tennis courts. Players from other Schools and Clubs from Fort Bragg, Mendocino, Willits, Windsor, Santa Rosa and Ukiah, all talk about the AV tennis courts and what a wonderful experience to play on them. Tournament players appeared to have a good time no matter how their scores were going. At the end of play everyone had a great time drinking the libations and eating the various dishes provided by all. O.K. some of us did nibble before and during play. This project started with a wish and small donation by a Valley resident. The community, led by Clive and Kim Silverman, took this seed, gathered donations of money and hard work, creating new, beautiful, state of the art courts. One of the very best outcomes has been the increased interest in tennis by the young people in our Valley. We not only have excellent players but champs! Dick Browning and Dave Ballantine continue to devote lots of time to help young people develop their skills and love for the game. On a personal note I cannot thank Clive, Kim, and all of the others that made this happen. There are just too many in this community to name, but you all came together and did it! I know Mike would be overwhelmed, as I am, by the love and soul that poured out for this project. Thank you all!”

AV YOUTH SOCCER LEAGUE sign ups are happening now. Pick up a registration form at the AV Elementary School office, or on-line at As usual, we need coaches, asst. coaches, and team parents. Help make the 2014 season another success! For information call Glad at 684-0792.

BILL McEWEN, Boonville Farmers Market Manager reminds us that knife sharpening (and other tools) will be available at Saturday mornings market. Look sharp!

WAY BACK when Boonville was called Kendall City, and local historians are invited to verify my hazy recall here, our fair town was centered in the area of what is now the junction of highways 128 and 253, then called the Ukiah Road and the Cloverdale Road. Not as far back, hops were among the Anderson Valley's primary export crops, as they were of course in Hopland. Surviving remnants of Native Americans were said to be the most adept harvesters of hops. The area of vanished Kendall City again features a modest hop field under the auspices of the Boonville Brewery, and a fine new landmark structure is rising to the west of the junction, a project of the Carsey family.

THE PHONE RINGS. I make the mistake of answering. “Philo fascism!” a female voice squawks, sounding very much like Polly wanting a cracker. I cock an ear for the terrible approach of synchronized jackboots. “I don't think they're coming for us today,” I say. “You're talking about incompetents, not fascists. Fascism implies energy, evil intelligence. You see energy or intelligence anywhere on the fetid premises of that place?” I try not to be rude, but with some people… Oblivious to my despairing groans, the caller thunders indignantly on, finally getting to the point about 15 minutes in, which is that the FCC complaints filed by disgruntled KZYX members have been chucked. Of course they have. The FCC could care less about some kind of tax-funded, muffin-headed echo chamber deep in the American outback. “But they called us ‘a handful of malcontents’ and ‘extreme leftists’.” You're surprised? Dissidents are always called a minority of malcontents. Who cares? You should be honored. Anyway, most public radio people here in the seething Emerald Triangle moved on to KMUD years ago. There isn't any way to reform KZYX. Don't worry your pretty little head about it, Yaz old girl. Move on.

ON THE SUBJECT of indignation, the clandestine meetings about what to do about the frost fans continue. Wendy Read is the lead malcontent on this one. Er, check that: Wendy can hardly be called a malcontent for representing majority Valley opinion, can she? The complaint about the preposterous racket the fans make filed with the county's Planning and Building Department by your beloved community newspaper is, I'm startled to report, actually being investigated. We got a call the other day from Planning and Building asking us for the specific addresses of the malefactors, which we were delighted to supply. We don't expect a wine-owned county to do anything about the annual sleep deprivation suffered by 2,000 residents of the Anderson Valley, but it's a start. An official record of complaint has been established, and next Spring when the aural assault re-commences in late March through April, and we're standing in front of the wine-supine Mendocino County Superior Court seeking our permanent injunction against these grotesque intrusions, it will be that much harder for the Court to rationally beat us back over the hill.

NOT THAT IT MATTERS to the cult-brains who elected him, but our alleged supervisor, Dan Hamburg, has not only been silent on the wind fan issue, he refuses to even respond to e-mail inquiries about them. And he runs for re-election unopposed on a record of doing absolutely nothing on this or any other issue! Hamburg is the only non-responsive supervisor. The other four return calls and are unfailingly helpful in clarifying this or that.

PLEASE NOTE that the photo of this year's Anderson Valley Senior Class is an informal photo. Some of those pictured this week are not graduating, and a few students matriculating from the Rancheria continuation high school are not here included. Also please note that graduation is Thursday, June 12th, 7pm at the high school.

ANDERSON VALLEY ARTISTS AND FRIENDS, an exhibit of compelling art works by some of the valley's finest artists, along with accomplished coast and inland artists, runs at the Odd Fellows Gallery, corner of Kasten and Ukiah Sts. in Mendocino, June 5 through June 30. Gallery hours are 10:30am-5pm. (Closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays.) Opening celebration is Second Saturday, June 14, 5-7pm. Info: 895-3134. Supporting local art is supporting the valley's vibrancy.

IS THERE ANYONE in The Valley without a scanner? We have one, as only befits a major rural news gathering organization, but to avoid its crackling din we only turn it on when we hear the sirens. This past weekend we had it on a lot, and it was reality radio all morning for two days:

At 5:16am the Boy Scout Camp, Navarro, reported a “combative, hallucinogenic (sic) patient. A 500-person “juggling fair” was underway at the Camp. We suspect, however, a rave whose alleged 500 attendees were juggling ecstasy, some of which they just happened to ingest, hence the combative, hallucinating juggler.

6:49am: Mosswood Cafe. “Altered mental state, difficulty breathing, detoxing patient.” Probably another juggler.

8:00am: Gschwend Road: Tom Melcher, not a juggler, but a victim of a wasp sting, from which Tom was “going into anaphalatic shock and having difficulty breathing,” which anaphalatic shock does to its victims.

8:11am: Hugh Scaramella, brother of Major Scaramella, was having difficulty breathing. Hugh is seriously ill with cancer and is presently in the Ukiah hospital.

9:am: A young woman calling from Lemons Market, Philo, said she couldn't move her neck. It soon moved.

ALSO Sunday morning there had been a house fire in Fort Bragg whose victim, an 82-year-old male, suffered major burns but apparently has survived.

SATURDAY, we heard the sad news that an ab diver had died and that Mendocino's emergency services people had carried out an “extended cliff rescue” that saved another person.

A NEIGHBOR of Husch Vineyards tells us that Husch has made major stream alterations to the Navarro River channel near the confluence of Lazy Creek so that they can continue to pump the stream’s depleted waters into their holding pond. Low flow had caused the river to shift and flow beyond the reach of the Husch pumps, hence the dispatch by Husch of a hand shovel crew about 40 yards upstream to make the river again flow within reach of Husch's pump. Husch has also had the shovel crew enlarge the pump hole. According to our source, the channel alterations are not only taking water away from downstream users, but will increase erosion because the re-routed flow undermines the rip-rap holding up the stream bank just downstream. Fish and Game warden Mark White told our source that as long as Husch doesn't bring heavy equipment into the riverbed, the stream alteration is sort-of legal in a loophole-ish way. One wonders if a by-hand alteration of the depleted river carried out by, say, 500 workers, would be sort of, loophole-ish, legal. Twenty guys with shovels are roughly equivalent to a medium-size tractor in the streambed, aren't they? No one questions the permit; Husch has one to pump. But can they really get around the Fish and Game laws by making major stream alterations with manual labor? Yes — unless a downstream property owner wants to take them to court.

RURAL SKILLS WORKSHOPS, this Saturday (June 7) at the Boonville Farmers’ Market, features:

• Jesse Rathbun of Boonville Bike Works will have his Mobile Bicycle Repair set up and will be offering $5 bike exams. This is the perfect time to bring your bikes to Jesse to get ready for Summer cruising. Maintaining our tools and transportation is definitely considered a “life skill” and Jesse will be cranking out a demo with plenty of Q & A for all of our local biker’s from 10:30 to 11AM.

• Alice Woelfle-Erskine — Local Livestock Manager offers livestock consultation services throughout the county as well as products including sheepskins and her miniature felted sheep sculptures. Alice will give a demonstration in the traditional hand sheep sheering method from 11:30 to 12 noon at our Boonville Farmers Market. This is the perfect opportunity to catch this busy farmer with any questions regarding the raising and management of livestock.

• Andy Sands — Another of Boonville’s renaissance men will be available at his “Garden Talks” table in the center of the Market. If you haven’t met Andy yet, then introduce yourself and come with your gardening questions.

• Bebing and Bill McEwen — Our Farmers Market Managers will offer their latest Olallie berry Jams and Syrups to sample and for sale.

Local Farmers, Gardeners and Culinary Artisans are available each week selling their labor of love (produce and more). Our Market Vendors each offer their experience stewarding Anderson Valley land and animals.

Rural Skills Presenters Needed for future workshops at our Boonville Saturday Farmers Market. Everyone in Anderson Valley has a Rural Life Skill to share in a half hour workshop, demo or presentation. Pick a Saturday that works for you and determine if you’d like to facilitate one or two workshops (10:30 to 11AM — 11:30 to 12) on that day. Contact Valerie Adair (707 367-2143 or with questions.

FORTUNATELY for us, the AVA has a loyal and remarkably patient gang of subscribers, many of whom, especially those out of state, tend to receive their papers in clumps of three and four. San Francisco is a little better. This week a subscriber reported that “the May 28 AVA arrived BEFORE the May 21 AVA (the former on Friday, the latter on Saturday! Apparently, life has more mysteries than we know.” Life and the Post Office seem to run neck and neck in the mystery department.

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