Community News for 9/19/13 edition of the Sierra Star

September 17, 2013 

Health insurance counseling and advocacy program

The Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program will now have representatives available all week for free consultations at the Sierra Senior Center, 49111 Cinder Lane, behind the Oakhurst Community Center.

This is an opportunity for those with Medicare to review or change their prescription drug plan or look at the Medicare Advantage plan offered in their area without any pressure to purchase.

Counselors will be available every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Senior Center. Anyone interested can call or drop by for information. The program is funded by the CMS and the Area Agency on Aging.

Details: (559) 683-3811, or (800) 434-0222.

Tioga Pass open

Tioga Road (state route 120) is now open. The road, which had been closed from Crane Flat to White Wolf, within Yosemite National Park, was clogged due to fire activity in the area. The public is advised to use extreme caution as firefighting activities continue in the area and visibility may be reduced due to smoke. For current road conditions in the park visit:

Current road conditions can also be found at Caltrans' website: or by calling Caltrans District 10 public affairs office, (209) 948-7977.

The area burned by the Rim Fire within Yosemite National Park remains closed due to hazardous conditions.

Rim Fire Stanislaus National Forest closures remain in effect. For forest closure information visit

Veteran and private investigator will speak at library

The Oakhurst Library is very pleased to host an event for local author, Robert Williams.

Williams is a veteran of the Vietnam War where he was awarded a Purple Heart among other military decorations. When he returned home, he earned a Bachelors Degree from Pepperdine University. After 17 years, Bob retired from the Culver City Police Department as a Sergeant. William's newest book is "T.Y.M.E. Interrupted,"the story of a scientific expedition using a time machine to venture to ancient Egypt.

The signing event will be held in the Library's new Community Room at 10 a.m. on Sept. 21.

Details: (559) 683-4838.

Grief support

The Hinds Hospice Center for Grief & Healing is forming a grief support group that will meet 6-7 p.m. every Tuesday for 12 weeks, starting Oct. 1, at the veterans outpatient center, 40597 West Lake Drive.

"In an effort to accommodate the overwhelming response for grief support groups we have added this 12-week group to our program," said Kathy Cromwell, director of the Center for Grief & healing. "It can be very helpful and supportive to meet with others who have also experienced the loss o a loved one. Support groups provide an opportunity to share stories, encourage others, and to have our feelings supported by a facilitor and group members."

Advance registration is required and the cost for the 12-week session is $25. A limited number of scholarships are available.

Details: (559) 248-8579.

Grocery Outlet ribbon cutting

The public is invited to the 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting ceremony Sept. 25 for the Grocery Outlet Bargain Market at 40301 Junction Drive.

The store, owned by Brandon and Jessica Steele, will hold a grand opening celebration 7 a.m. - 6 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 28, featuring an eco-friendly resusable bag to the first 500 customers, coffee and treats, a spin-and-win wheel of bargains, face painting, and a hot dog and drink for $1, benefiting the Oakhurst Kiwanis Club.

The festivities continue Sunday, Sept. 29, with the first 100 customers receiving a Grocery Outlet mascot bobble head.

David Haas concert

David Haas, a Minnesota resident and founder of Music Ministry Alive, will be presenting a workshop and concert Sept. 21 and 22 at 3 p.m. at North Fork's Grace Community Church for anyone interested in church music. Admission is free but registration is recommended due to limited space.

The concert will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday and the cost is $10 per person.

Details: Barbara Colliander or Sandy Chaille, (559) 877-7796,

SNAMP reschedules workshop

The Sierra Nevada Adaptive Management Project (SNAMP) has rescheduled its Oct. 14 collaboration workshop to Oct. 21 due to oversight of the Columbus Day holiday.

The workshop will now be held 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Monday, Oct. 21 the Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church.

Cost of the workshop is $15 and will include lunch and materials. The registration deadline is Oct. 14.


Volunteer Krogen killed in fall from helicopter

California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) volunteer Shane Krogen was tragically killed Sept. 12 when he fell from a helicopter in support of a Tulare County marijuana cleanup operation.

The incident occurred in a remote section of the Sequoia National Forest, during Operation Pristine, when Krogen, along with the High Sierra Volunteer Trail Crew, which he supervised, was supporting a clean-up operation in the forest. Operation Pristine is a combined effort of California Department of Fish & Wildlife, the California National Guard, U.S. Forest Service, to identify, eradicate and reclimate the most polluted illegal marijuana grow sites in California.

"Shane's dedication to California's natural resources was extraordinary," said John Baker, CDFW assistant chief. "He and his crew have worked tirelessly for several years to maintain access to the high Sierra for all Californians."

As the supervisor of the High Sierra Volunteer Trail Crew, Krogen has actively supported clean up missions of illicit marijuana cultivation sites, and other projects, since 2008.

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