Community News for 12/20/12 edition

December 20, 2012 

Sierra Star early deadlines

Due to the upcoming Christmas holiday, Sierra Star deadlines are earlier than usual.

Sierra Star display ad deadlines are at noon Thursday, Dec. 20.

Classified ad deadlines are at 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 20

The Wednesday, Dec. 26 Advertiser deadlines have not been affected.

The Sierra Star office will close at noon on Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas day.

Details: (559) 683-4464.

Madera County warming centers

Madera County has established the following locations as warming centers during times of extreme winter cold. The centers will be open the days and times of the week as indicated.

Coarsegold Community Center, 35540 Highway 41. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Phone: (559) 683-7953.

Oakhurst Sierra Senior Center, 49111 Cinder Lane. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. Phone: (559) 683-3811.

Yosemite Lakes Park Clubhouse, 30250 Yosemite Springs Parkway. 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Phone: (559) 658-7466.

Centers are closed on holidays unless otherwise indicated. Activation of warming center sites beyond regular operating hours will be assessed on an as need basis.

Details: Sheriff's Department/Office of Emergency Services, (559) 675-7770.

Comfort Food

The Sierra Senior Center in Oakhurst will host a Comfort Food Night 5-7 p.m. Friday at the center behind the Oakhurst Community Center.

A ham dinner will be served for $8 per person and reservations are suggested by calling (559) 683-3811.

Dec. 31 deadline nears to save theater

The Save the Met campaign is close to two-thirds of their goal of 3,000 movie theater memberships to reopen the Oakhurst movie theater.

The trio spearheading the effort -- Matt Sconce, James Nelson and Keith Walker -- made a deal that gives them until Dec. 31 to raise funds to reopen the Met by reaching a quota of memberships, what allows residents to watch unlimited films each month for less than the cost of two movie tickets in Fresno.

"If every Met Hero (member) would get one person to sign up, we would reach our goal in a single day," Sconce said. "We need people who are waiting to join. We need people who are members to tell their neighbors and friends. It will take a community effort, but with their help, we can save the Met."

Residents can sign up at, or in the theater's lobby.

The trio recently launched a "Heroes Take Flight" contest to encourage sign-ups. If a friend of a Met Hero member signs up, they can put the name of the friend who referred them in a referral box on the first sign-up screen on

"Each time you get someone to sign up and they put your name, it counts as a point in the contest," Sconce said. "If the doors open, the top 100 referred members will have the ability to receive a free popcorn and soda each time they watch a movie all year. The top referred member wins an entire year of free movies."

Crab cakes is offering Met members 1/2 off any appetizer with the purchase of an entrée -- offer good for one year. Mariposa Coffee is offering 10 free mochas to Met members. More perks are on the way, Sconce said.

The Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau supports their efforts to save The Met Cinema. Along with benefitting the community, it also gives tourists another reason to stay in Oakhurst, they said.

"The bureau wholeheartedly supports the efforts" said Dan Cunning, CEO. "We challenge businesses in town to buy memberships as a great way to say 'thank you' to your hard working staff, or even as a gift for a family member or friend."

Sconce said to give a Met Cinema membership as a Christmas gift, all people registering at have to do is sign-up, then wait for the email that will ask what name you want on the card. When that email comes, just tell us the friend's name, Sconce said.

Yosemite adult school classes

Yosemite Adult School is offering the following classes next semester and registration is now open:

EMT Class -- Starting 6:30-9:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 8, Room 57, Yosemite High School. Cost: $250.

Welding Class -- Starting 6-10 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 23, Welding Room 500. Cost: $150.

Register online at or call Lawnna Porter, (559) 683-8801 ext. 366.

Donation for aid of crime victims

The Community Action Partnership of Madera County has received a $54,849 donation from the California Prison Industry Authority, operating at the Central California Women's Facility in Chowchilla, to aid its efforts in the assistance of crime victims.

The donation was announced last week by Michael R. Keitz, Madera County district attorney.

The Community Action Partnership in collaboration with the DA's office provides assistance and advocacy to victims of crimes committed in Madera County partners with the women's facility to employ inmates in manufacturing projects.

The inmates are paid for their work and a portion of the income is contributed to restitution to crime victims.

Book Signing

Pam Pederson will have a signing for her book featuring about 25 Yosemite bridges, titled "Old World Bridges," from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in the Thomas Hill Studio next to the Wawona Hotel in Wawona.

Avon representatives donate to hospital

Back in September, Elena Chase, an Avon representative, decided to do a fundraiser for Children's Hospital, Central Valley. She started raising money for "Curly the Bear" by Avon, so that the children could have a big bear for Christmas. When Elena told her fellow Avon representative, Deona Cooper about it, they decided to join forces to raise additional funds for the bears.

They raised enough so that 138 children at the hospital will get "Curly" for Christmas. They delivered the bears to the hospital on Dec. 8, along with their unit leader, Phyllis Smith and her husband Ray.

"It's nice to know that even in hard times, a small community can come together when it comes to charity, especially when it's for children," Chase said. "Many individuals and businesses in the Mountain Area were kind enough to donate to this wonderful cause."

German exchange student opportunity

The Bundestag Program is currently receiving applicants ages 15-18 for scholarship opportunities for high school students to spend an academic year in Germany.

The application deadline is Jan. 15.

Details: (800)733-2773, email

RSVP by Jan. 3 for chamber dinner

The Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce will host their annual Installation Dinner and Award Ceremony Jan. 11 to welcome its 2013 board of directors, and to name the Man, Woman, Business and Volunteer of the Year.

The reception will begin at 6 p.m. at Tenaya Lodge, followed by the $40 per person dinner at 7 p.m.

RSVP and pre-pay by Friday, Jan. 3 to the chamber.

Special Tenaya Lodge room rates are available for $109 for those attending the event.

End of the world party at the Pines

In honor of the Mayans' prophesied end of the world on Friday, The Pines Bar in Bass Lake will host a "Party Like There's No To-Maya" party from 9 p.m. "until the end of the world, or until 1:30 a.m., whichever comes first."

Those attending are encouraged to wear black and party favors will be available. Drink specials start at $1.

Free comedy show

"Bass Lake Laughs," a free comedy show featuring six acts, will be presented at 7 p.m., Friday, Dec. 28, in the Lakeview Room in the Pines Village.

Performers, who have appeared at comedy clubs around the state, will include: Bo DeLapp, one of the fastest rising comedians in the Central Valley; "Just Dave," who runs two comedy shows in the Valley through his company Valley Comedy; Torio Van Grol, a Bass lake resident who now performs regularly in the Valley; and Joe Alaniz, a comedian who's enthusiastic about helping people laugh.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Details: (559) 692-8807.

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