Community News for 6/13/13 edition

June 11, 2013 

Fresno Flats Friday

The next "Friday at Fresno Flats" event will be held June 14 with speaker Ed Guzman, general manager of Sierra Ambulance.

The evening begins with a $10 pizza dinner and ice cream sundaes served by Fresno Flats volunteers at 5:30 p.m. in the Cunningham School, Fresno Flats Historic Village and Park, 49777 School Road (427).

Following dinner, Guzman will talk about the services provided by Sierra Ambulance to the Mountain Area. Sierra Ambulance has provided life saving services to residents of Eastern Madera County since 1964. Details: (559) 683-6570.

Bass Lake Arts and Crafts Fair

The 37th annual Bass Lake Arts and Crafts Fair will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Sunday, June 14-16.

There will be arts and crafts including pottery, jewelry, photography, and sea glass, as well as live music by Good Medicine of North Fork all three days. Admission and parking is free.

Details: Mike Knapp, (559) 288-6614,

Cal Fire suspends all burning in area

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire), Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit, in cooperation with Madera County Fire Department announced that all burning has been suspended in the State Responsibility Area of Madera County.

The burn suspension is necessary due to the lack of rainfall and higher than normal temperatures the area has experienced. California lends itself to severe wildfire conditions year round with its unique climate and topography, but this year is experiencing historic low fuel moistures. The chance of large and damaging fires exists throughout California. Details: or

Tea Party meeting

An Oakhurst/Coarsegold Tea Party Action Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 18 at the Best Western Yosemite Gateway Inn Restaurant, 40530 Highway 41, Oakhurst.

Speaker Steven Brink will reveal his opinions on how government policies, the endangered species act, and extremist environmentalists are destroying our national forests, the species that live on them, the lumber industry and jobs.

Brink is a 1971 civil engineering graduate of the University of California, Davis. He was a forest engineer and planner for the Forest Service for 37 years with five assignments in California, three tours in Alaska and one assignment in Ogden, Utah. He retired July 2005 as deputy regional forester in Alaska and has been vice president-public resources for the California Forest Association since then. Details: John and Jannai Pero, (559) 760-0880.

Ham radio operators will meet June 22-23

Members of the Mountain Amateur Radio Club will gather for the annual "Field Day" June 22 and 23 adjacent to True Value Home Center, 40596 Westlake Drive, Oakhurst.

When disasters strike, knocking-out traditional means of communications including telephones, cell phones, Internet and email, it is ham radio operators across the country that provide back-up communications. The "Field Day" is the conclusion of the week-long Amateur Radio Week sponsored by the National Association of Amateur Radio. More than 35,000 radio operators throughout the country participated in the event last year.

The club invites the public to visit the site during "Field Day" to meet and talk with the radio operators and see first-hand how what amateur radio can do.

Details: Joseph Frank, (559) 683-5398,

Loggers Jamboree

This year's theme for the July 6 and 7 logging event held at the North Fork Recreation Center is "From Tree to You."

Logging competition starts at 10 a.m. Saturday morning. Following the pro-am events will be the Loggers Jamboree parade down Main Street, a tri-tip dinner at Town Hall and dancing to thew sounds of "Wheelhouse" at the Woodchopper's Ball, along with the crowning of the jamboree queen.

Sunday begins with the Lions Club pancake breakfast with the professional logging events, including log rolling, ax throw and hot saws, starting at noon.

Presale jamboree tickets are $2 and $5 at the gate. Details:

Coolwater concert

Grammy nominee Thom Bresh will perform at 8 p.m., June 22 at Coolwater Ranch in Ahwahnee.

Bresh is the son of the late, great Merle Travis, and like his father, is a well-known thumb pickers who has been inducted into the Thumb Pickers Hall of Fame in 2001. Along with his diverse skill with the guitar, Bresh sports a rich, deep voice along with the ability to do impressions, infusing a whole lot of comedy into his act.

Tickets ($25) are currently available at Mountain Feed and Nursery in Coarsegold and at Oakhurst Feed & Pet Supply. Details: Robin Ralston, (559) 760-1134,

Murder case to go to court for third time

A new trial has been ordered for Michael Pizarro in the 1989 North Fork murder of his half sister, 13-year-old Amber Barfield, according to a story recently published in the Fresno Bee.

Pizarro, who has been in prison for 14 years, still maintains that he's innocent in the rape and murder of Barfield. Her body was found June 11, 1989, not far from her North Fork home.

According to the Bee, after Pizarro's first trial, his attorneys argued the validity of the DNA evidence. After his second trial, it was found that one juror read an appellate opinion outside of court when they jury had been asked to only consider evidence presented in court. A 5th District Court of Appeal cited the juror for misconduct and has ordered the third trial.

Edward Jones breaks into Fortune 500 list

Edward Jones, the financial services firm, has broken into the Fortune 500, as published by Fortune magazine, according to Darren W. Stearns, an Edward Jones financial advisor in Oakhurst.

Fortune magazine's annual listing ranks the largest U.S. companies by revenue. Edward Jones debuts on this year's list at No. 491, with more than $5 billion in revenue for 2012.

"Edward Jones will continue to grow to meet the needs of our clients now and in the future," said Jim Weddle, Edward Jones managing partner. "By serving long-term individual investors and providing them with excellent client service, we can make a significant difference in their lives."

The full list and related stories appear in the May 20 issue of Fortune and at

Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors. The firm's 12,000-plus financial advisors work directly with nearly 7 million clients. Details:

Prescribed fire in Yosemite planned

Yosemite National Park Fire Managers are planning a prescribed fire in Yosemite Valley in the Taft Toe Area. The burn will start on, or around, June 18, dependent on weather conditions. Specifically, the burn area is located along Southside Drive between El Capitan Bridge and the Sentinel Beach picnic area. The total prescribed burn area will include 111 acres and is expected to last one to two days.

Prescribed fires within Yosemite National Park help promote the long term health of the ecosystem, restore vistas, and reduce the possibility of unwanted wildfires.


Rigg earns chartered life underwriters designation

Oakhurst State Farm Insurance agent Marilyn Rigg, has earned the Chartered Life Underwriter professional designation from The American College, Bryn Mawr, PA.

Candidates for the designation must complete a minimum of eight courses and 16 hours of supervised examination. They must also fulfill stringent experience and ethics requirements.

This prestigious course of study provides professionals with in-depth knowledge on the insurance needs of individuals, families and business owners. Once the program is completed, an underwriter can provide expert advice on a broad range of financial topics including life and health insurance, pension planning, insurance law, income taxation, investments, financial and estate planning, and group benefits.

Rigg has been an Oakhurst resident for many years and she and husband Doug Reeves are active in many community activities. She is a past board member and president of the Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce and past board member and president of Soroptimist International of the Sierra. Doug is actively involved in the Oakhurst Sierra Sunrise Rotary.

The Sierra Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

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