Mountain Area cooling centers
Madera County has established the following hours and locations in the Mountain Area for cooling centers during times of extreme heat:
Oakhurst Senior Center: 49111 Cinder Lane (behind the Oakhurst Community Center): 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday. (559) 683-3811.
Coarsegold Community Center: 35540 Highway 41: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
Yosemite Lakes Park Clubhouse: 30250 Yosemite Springs Parkway: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
Details: Madera County Sheriff's Department/Office of Emergency Services, (559) 675-7770.
Harlow fire presentation Friday
On Friday, Fresno Flats presents "Harlow Fire Memories" with eye witness accounts from survivors of the Harlow Fire of 1961, the fastest fire in California history which destroyed Ahwahnee and Nipinnawasee in some 15 minutes.
Featured speaker, Franny Adams, events coordinator for the National Forest Service, will show the Harlow Fire DVD, picturing the devastation left by the fire. She will discuss lessons learned from this disaster, offering specific suggestions for preparing for such emergencies.
"Preparing for Disasters", a guide written by George Sitts for St. Raphael's Church will be available for a small donation.
The evening begins at 5:30 p.m. with dinner, followed by the program at Fresno Flats Historic Village and Park on School Road (427). The public is invited to attend this important program. Cost, including dinner, is $10.
Details: (559) 683-6570
Tea Party meeting
The Coarsegold/Oakhurst Tea Party will hold an action meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 17 at the Best Western Yosemite Gateway Inn Restaurant in Oakhurst.
Guest speaker will be Brad Roltgen, former head of the Central Valley Tea Party, one of the largest and most active Tea Parties in the nation, now co-coordinator of all the Tea Party groups in California.
Also speaking will be Ronika Johnson, Tea Party activist just back from Michigan and Washington D.C.
Details: (866) 565-1379.
Peter Pan to Fly into Mariposa
The Mariposa Playhouse is proud to present Peter Pan on Wednesday & Thursday, Aug.t 1 and 2 at the Mariposa Park's Amphitheater. The play will start at 8 p.m. Cost for adults is $10, children $5.
True Value Family Health & Safety Expo True Value Homecenter is gearing up for the first Family Health & Safety Expo 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday July 28 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 40596 Westlake Drive off Highway 49.
"Like many other communities across the country, we found residents of Oakhurst want to learn more about health and safety issues," said Alan Bryant, one of the members of the Bryant family, owners of True Value Homecenter. "This event will feature health screenings, child safety seat inspections by the California Highway Patrol and health education exhibits. The Expo is a fun way to see your neighbors, learn safety skills and pick up some new information at the same time."
The expo will also feature fire engines displayed by Cal Fire and the Madera County Fire Department, sheriff's search and rescue personnel and the department's off highway vehicle unit. Sierra Ambulance is sponsoring a "Hands Only CPR" event to commemorate Oakhurst's 100th birthday by having 100 people perform Hands Only CPR at the same time.
Anyone interested in participating in the event should call Bill Hartley, (559) 658-1052.
Details: Sheila Smith or Alan Bryant, (559) 683-7117.
"Farmageddon" at North Fork library
A documentary film titled "Farmageddon" will be presented at The Studio next to the North Fork Library at 7 p.m. Monday, July 16 about the unseen war on American family farms.
A potluck will be held in The Studio at 5:45 p.m. and the movie starts at 7 p.m. Free coffee and tea will be provided by Slim's Koffee Shack.
Special guest and local farmers Hansel Kern of Kern Family Farm and Tom Willey of T&D Willy Farms will be available for discussion after the film. Hillari Hanson from Weston-Price Foundation will be available for questions.
Two die in Yosemite
Two people have died in Yosemite National Park in the past two weeks, including Michael Ybarra of Los Angeles, an extreme sports correspondent for the Wall Street Journal and contributor to the Los Angeles Times, who died from a rock climbing fall over the weekend before the July 4 holiday.
Ybarra was climbing alone in the Sawtooth Ridge area on the edge of the park when he fell about 150 feet. His family and friends contacted authorities when he did not return home July 1 from his one-day trip. Park authorities retrieved Ybarra via helicopter a day after he was spotted by a Mono County helicopter.
Another man, 41-year-old Francisco Garcia of South Gate, drowned in the Merced River July 6 in the back of Wawona Campground.
Garcia jumped into the river around the time his teenage son started having trouble swimming, said Kari Cobb, spokeswoman for Yosemite National Park. Another person also jumped into the river and pulled the teen to safety on the other side of the river, but Garcia drowned.
This is the third accidental death in Yosemite this year, with another six dead since January from natural causes, Cobb said. The park typically sees between 12 and 15 fatalities a year, she said.
Many more people died in the park than normal last year, with 13 accidental deaths, seven natural deaths, and one man still missing after he disappeared in May, 2011 while hiking on the Upper Yosemite Falls Trail with a large group from his church, Cobb said.