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Valley People

SATURDAY NIGHT, Boonville gym, beginning at 6pm, three alumni basketball games, the greats of yesteryear, men and women, will return to the hardwood scene of their glories to take on the present-day Panthers and Panther-ettes led by Omar Ferreyra; Ruby Pena; Garrett Mezzanatto; Natalia Ventura; John Paula; laura Essayah; Derek Soto; Jeanette Ochoa; Noe Benevides; Sasha Herrera; Domingo Ferreyra; Josie Mendoza; James Viera; Itzel Perez!

THE ALUMS include a least one big star from the 1990s who is driving up from the big city fully expecting “to ricochet a few reverse slams right in some startled teen pusses! Shock and awe, baby!” Quieter alums include: Ben Anderson, Robert Mailer Anderson, Matt Equinto, Jerry Tolman, Ryan Parish, Kevin Lee, Will Housley, Antonio Soto, Logo Tevaseu, John Toohey, Vidal Ferrerya, Mike Wellington, Justin Carson, Joe Pronsolino, Ramon Jimenez, Emilio Torales, Justin Rhoades, Eddie Reynoso, Mariko Mooring, Justin Johnston, Jack Boudoures, Nate Moore, Martin Tevaseu.

LADY HOOPSTERS will feature Michelle Favela, Dora Jiménez, Claudia Jiménez, Ashley Gowan, Brenda Pena, Lupita Guerrero, Ana Karen Carrillo, Alicia Mendoza.

AMEEN GAZALI, a senior at Anderson Valley High School, has organized Saturday night's hoops spectacular, which also includes a raffle, a silent auction, plenty of food, music, and the pure joy that derives from seeing old friends again.

VALERI HAMMANG-CAMPBELL, 30, a resident of the Mendocino Coast, died from injuries she sustained in a terrible collision on Highway 128 near Dimmick State Park last Tuesday morning about 11:30. Hammang-Campbell was westbound in a 1989 Honda Civic when she unaccountably crossed into the oncoming lane and struck an eastbound 1998 Mercedes driven by Kathleen Wishner. Mrs. Wishner braked hard but was unable to avoid Hammang-Campbell's oncoming vehicle. The Mercedes struck the passenger side of the Honda full-force and, being the larger, heavier vehicle, crushed Ms. Hammang-Campbell's Honda and Ms. Hammang-Campbell with it. Mortally battered from the collision, Ms. Hammang-Campbell was extracted from the wreckage and flown by a Cal-Star helicopter to the Ukiah Valley Medical Center where she expired from multiple injuries. Mrs. Wishner and her husband, William, are residents of Pasadena. They were uninjured. The Anderson Valley Fire Department, the Albion Little River Fire Department, Fort Bragg Ambulance and the Anderson Valley Fire Department all responded to the scene of the accident, the CHP said.

TROTTING FORLORNLY along the Greenwood Road on the rain-soaked Tuesday of March 30th were two big dogs, a brindle Mastiff and a black and white Great Dane. If you're missing them, and how could you not given the size of these splendid animals, call 467-6453.

BROKE? Bored? Beset by guilt for never doing your civic duty? Uncle Sam needs you to help find and count all the people who were not mailed, or failed to return, 2010 Census forms. Earn $11.50/hour plus $.50/mile driving up those roads that you always wondered about, talking to the people who live along the way, helping to possibly collect the first ever accurate count of Mendocino County residents and hopefully bring more federal dollars back to your own community clinic, school and housing programs. And as an extra bonus for liberal leaning lefties, learning why Emil Rossi is probably right about big government programs being an inefficient use of our hard earned tax dollars. Call 1-866-861-2010 to find out the nearest place to apply. — Diane Paget

“CENSUS BUREAU braces for possible threats to count: $15 billion headcount not going well.” So went the headline in one of last weekend's daily newspapers. In these fragmented, suspicious times the government is surprised that millions of people prefer silence, cunning and internal exile? With all due respect to Diane Paget, and speaking as a person who faithfully filled out his census form because his wife demanded that it be done, who in his right mind would want to trudge up Mendocino County's lonely dirt roads these days asking questions for $12 an hour? At planting time? No telling what you might walk into. If the Census Bureau provided full body armor and $50 an hour they might get a few takers, but given the pathological givens of American society in 2010…?

PS. AskCensus @ explains why they don't send forms to post office boxes. “Thank you for contacting the Census Bureau Question and Answer Center. We don’t send census forms to PO boxes. The census is all about counting people where they live and sleep, so we must tie each form to a physical location. PO boxes are not tied to specific housing units, so we can’t use them to send the forms to specific housing units. One of our census workers will visit houses that rely on PO boxes between May 1 and July 10.”

ACCORDING to Google Weather, as of Monday morning 2.97 inches of rain had fallen on the Anderson Valley, fallen hard and fast since the previous Saturday. Richard Herr, who measures rainfall for your community newspaper, puts the total for the week at an even three inches.

COMPTCHE’S 6th Annual Flea Market and plant sale is May 8th from 10am to 3pm. It’s a benefit for the Comptche Community Organization, Inc. Great goodies, collectibles, plant starts, clothes, jewelry, crafts, new and used treasures will be on offer. Bring mom and enjoy browsing the booths, snacks, lunch and music. For more information send an email to:

THE PHILO YACHT CLUB hasn't quite announced that its annual regatta is scheduled for Sunday, May 3rd under the Greenwood Bridge, Philo.

THE 28TH ANNUAL Boontling Classic 5K footrace (and walk) will take place Sunday, May 2nd at 10:00 am. at the Anderson Valley Elementary School. This is a low - key run / walk for all ages and abilities. Ribbons are awarded to the winners in each age group, but the real draw is the drawing for prizes donated by local businesses. All entrants are eligible to win wine, gift certificates, etc. Last year’s winners were Randy Esson of Willits who clocked a 21:13 and Rebecca McLean won with an impressive 21:40. This event is sponsored by the North Coast Striders. Entry forms can be picked up at the Boont Berry Farm Store, All That Good Stuff and the General Store in Boonville and Lemon’s Market in Philo. For info or entries call 707-895-3589 or email

IF YOU'VE NEVER done the Boontling Classic I can tell you it's a heckuva lotta fun with a congenial mass of Mendolanders. I remember running it back in the day, and I remember walking it not so far back in the day. I always tried to finish ahead of Bruce Hering but, try as I might, I'd pull abreast of his gaunt, fit form only to find that I couldn't keep up with his long, loping, relentless strides. I thought at the time that running against Bruce Hering was like trying to beat Father Time. Now that both our clocks have run down some I wonder if I could out-walk the old boy. I'm going to give him a go May 2nd.

DIANA CHARLES' Philo barn was chock full of family and friends Saturday night who'd gathered to celebrate Derek Wyant's 25th birthday. In other Charles' news, Holly Charles is engaged to Ukiah attorney, Brian Momsen.

FIRE CHIEF Colin Wilson sent the following note to the Community Services District’s Budget Committee last week: “[General Manager] Serina [Wallace] included an increase of .3% in Property Tax revenues to the CSD [for administration] which will mean that the Fire Department will receive a reduction of that amount. This will equate to a shift of a little over $6K from the Fire Department to the CSD administration. I believe this was done because it was necessary to fund the CSD’s increased [admin] cost. Something of a trade off occurred when Serina re-calculated her time devoted to each of the entities she works for and found that the Teen Center used considerably more of her time than had previously been assumed. This is the first time accurate and relatively complete records have been kept. The result of this to the Fire Department was a reduction of $3,670 in the Admin Fee charged to the Fire Department. The net change to us is about a $2,000 loss in revenue. The Board has already voted to approve the increased time to the General Manager’s position (from 80 to 85 hours per month) which accounts for a portion of this increase so I am not going to protest this proposed transfer of revenue at this time. The new proposed admin fee to the Teen Center is $3,263 which is a considerable increase. If the Board elects to, once again, forgive all or part of the Teen Center [admin] fee, I think it is necessary for them to identify where they want the funds taken from. Even with this increase in Property Tax Revenue, the proposed CSD Budget is in the red about $4,400. For FY 2010/11 Serina [Wallace] is proposing to fund this shortfall from preceding years Fund Balance Carryover. That will work this year but it is an ongoing revenue source and will result, over time, in a budget shortfall that is not replaceable from CSD funds. The potential cumulative impact of these issues may become significant in the near future (one to two years) and I would like to see us address the issue now, before it becomes a crisis.”

TRANSLATION: Torch the kids. Well, not exactly. But if a mere three grand or so is diverted to the Teen Center, the Chief says local fire fighting is proportionately penalized.

SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY for Young Writers: The Mendocino Coast Writer's Conference offers up to six full conference scholarships to students currently completing 9th-12th grade in Mendocino County. Home-schooled and independent study students are eligible. This year the conference takes place from July 29th to August 1st. Students' writing can be in any genre: poetry, journalism, fiction, memoir, graphic/comic, essay, or blog. Last year, Maribel Garcia and Sierra Kuny of Anderson Valley High won two of the six scholarships, and reported that the experience was both fun and very useful. Another former scholarship winner says, “One of the best parts of the conference was the opportunity to share my writing. It was fun to talk to all the other writers at the conference; everyone treated me as an equal.”  Winning a scholarship to this kind of conference also enhances college applications. The application deadline is May 1, 2010. If you have questions, please contact the scholarship program coordinator, Karen Lewis, at

MURIEL ELLIS, Terry Ryder's popular mom, is back in the hospital. After almost single-handedly winning last week's Trivial Pursuit contest at Lauren's Restaurant, leading her team to a big win, Muriel seems to have suffered a relapse from her recent bout with cancer.

THE MENDOCINO ORGANIC Network and Redwood Empire Farmers Union will host a Food and Farming Forum for 5th District Supervisor candidates: April 20 at the Garcia Grange in Manchester. The forum will begin at 7 p.m. and conclude at approximately 8:30 p.m. Another Food and Farming Forum will be held in Willits at the Little Lake Grange on April 29. It will begin at 7 PM and conclude at 8:30 PM. The purpose of the forums is to inform voters about where the candidates stand on issues related to small farms, local food production, and a strong local food economy. The forums will be moderated by Tim Bates of The Apple Farm, with questions to the candidates and opportunity for brief responses among the candidates, followed by a period of questions from the audience, and concluding with a short closing statement by each candidate. The Mendocino Organic Network (“MON”) is a group of farmers and gardeners in Mendocino and Lake Counties. MON conceived and conducted the successful Measure H campaign and developed the local certification program known as Mendocino Renegade. (For more information see Redwood Empire Farmers Union (REFU) is a newer organization, affiliated with the California Farmers Union and National Farmers Union, which has advocated for family farmers since its founding in 1902. (For information see

BARBARA JOHANNAH spotted this bold signs-of-the-times ad in the MendoLake Exchange: “Remote land wanted in Lake/Mendo county. Wanting to grow on it over the summer and pay cash for the land/rent at the end of the grow season. 707-461 9145.”

IDENTIFY WILDFLOWERS in the wild. The Anderson Valley Land Trust is happy to announce that Clare Wheeler and Jane Miller will lead our Spring Wildflower Walk on Saturday afternoon, April 17th featuring new areas of the conserved Bickell Ranch outside of Yorkville. More than one option of routes will be offered. Please call the AVLT office at 895-3150 (which is now in the Missouri House next to the Boonville Post Office) or email us at to sign up, receive directions, time, and carpooling information.

JENNIFER LeBRETT, nee Clow, has a good shot at appearing on Donald Trump's television show, The Apprentice. Jennifer graduated from AVHS in 1987.

FREE LEGAL HELP is now available to Lake and Mendocino homeowners 60 years of age or older who need assistance in avoiding foreclosure or otherwise maintaining the affordability of their housing. California Human Development, an area nonprofit agency serving northern and central California, has contracted with the Senior Law Project based in Lakeport to provide non-litigation services for seniors. Advice and assistance can be provided towards obtaining a home loan modification or other remedy that may help keep seniors and their household members in their homes. California Human Development can also provide foreclosure intervention counseling to all other households living anywhere in California, free of charge and with no income or age restrictions, through its HUD-certified counselors. These counselors are bilingual English/Spanish and can provide counseling in person at California Human Development’s Santa Rosa headquarters, by telephone or by e-mail. For more information on foreclosure intervention please contact Linda Hedstrom, California Human Development’s Housing and Economic Development Manager, at 707-372-4588 or Seniors living in Lake or Mendocino counties interested in legal assistance may contact the Senior Law Project office at 200-B North Main Street in Lakeport or at 707-263-4703 to request an application.

WHEN CARLOS ESPINOZA took a fly ball on the nose the other afternoon, the Anderson Valley Health Center in deep, deep right field was just closing up for the day. But. But Dr. Mark Apfel and Maria Reynoso delayed their already long work day to patch the kid up.

ONLY ONE BALL GAME last week. Anderson Valley dropped a close one to Fort Bragg, 2-0.

THE SPANISH 4 CLASS at Anderson Valley High School is presently engaged in a plant-a-tree campaign for the entire month of April, the goal being to get 100 trees planted in our community. The young arborists have put up posters throughout Anderson Valley advertising their campaign. Anyone wishing to participate is invited to fill out an “order form” that can be found at All That Good Stuff, Alicia’s Restaurant, and Boont Berry Farm and redeemable at either Ludwig’s Irrigation and Nursery or the Anderson Valley Nursery where a 10%-30% discount on the tree of their choice. The Spanish 4 class hopes to aid the battle against global warming. Please help us do our bit.

MTA'S BUS SERVICE to and from the Anderson Valley to Ukiah is about to cost 25% more, meaning it will cost $75 a month for a monthly pass which presently goes for $60. MTA is, to say the least, badly managed. They say they're running a deficit of nearly three quarters of a million dollars just after they announce they intend to spend roughly that amount on planning and design for a new headquarters building, the money thus allocated representing their entire vehicle reserve. $75 a month is zero incentive to take the bus to Ukiah from Anderson Valley. You can drive it for that. MTA, always marginally relevant as a public transit system, is just about wholly irrelevant at this point.

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