Community News for 11/7/13 edition of the Sierra Star

November 12, 2013 

Ongoing hooded sweatshirts drive

New or slightly used hooded sweatshirts are desperately needed by Yosemite High School students now that the colder weather is approaching. A box has been placed in front of the Mountain Christian Center office for drop-offs. Please note that because students will only wear hoodies, it is the only item requested for donation. Details: (559) 760-2434


Veterans Day Services

On Monday, Nov. 11, 2013 flags will be set for the Avenue of Flags at Courthouse Park by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #1981 and Boy Scout Troop # 117

Also, Placement of Flags will be taking place at Arbor Vitae Cemetery by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #1981 and the Court House Park Posting of Colors and Presentation of the Wreaths including a speech by guest speaker, Frank Bigalow


Adventist school fall festival Sunday

Oakhurst Adventist Christian School's Fall Festival will be held noon - 5 p.m. this Sunday at the school, 50690 Crane Valley road (426).

Sponsored by the school's Parent Teacher Organization, the festival is a fundraiser for student field trips.

A variety of fun booths and activities will be available including a rock wall, dunk tank, bounce house, photo booth, basketball hoop shoot, balloon dart board, face painting, bead creations, free book giveaway, cake walk, and pumpkin ring toss.

Cal Fire and Smokey Bear will also be attending. Details: Sonya Reaves, (559) 908-7475.


Musical history Nov. 11

On Monday, Nov. 11, history will be made for the Mountain Area with the first ever public performance of the "Mountain Area Marching Band," in the Fresno Veterans Day Parade. More than 125 student musicians plus color guard, banners and drum majors from Yosemite, Mariposa, Sierra and Minarets High Schools will unite to participate as one marching band.

A unified band has been a topic of discussion with band directors Bill Samuelson, Bruce Wienberger, Dr. Phil Smith, Rod Fiester, Pat Mierkey and Randy Hyatt for more than a year.

"Since the Veterans Day Parade is non-competitive, it seemed like a great opportunity to give it a test run," Hyatt said. The combined band will play "Allied Honor."

"The students are really excited to be together and support one another for this performance," Hyatt said. "Most of our students would never have the experience of marching in a band of this size at their individual schools."

The Fresno Veterans Day Parade brings national and worldwide attention to the military and to Fresno, through its broadcast on the Pentagon Channel — available on base to more than 1.3 million service members who live and work on more than 368 military bases, camps and installations in the U.S. The parade is televised each year on NBC affiliate, KSEE Channel 24.

The Veterans Day Parade begins at 11 a.m. on Nov. 11. Details: Randy Hyatt, (559) 683-4667, ext. 243

Two recycling locations established in Oakhurst

Two locations in Oakhurst have been established as drop-off locations for paint recycling. The locations are:

True Value Home Center, 40596 Westlake Dr., (559) 683-7117 and American Floors and Interiors, 40088 Highway 49, (559)683-5667.

The California PaintCare program, which started in October 2012, provides locations for people to take unwanted, leftover paint to be recycled.

California was the second state in the country to implement this program and has almost 500 collection sites across the state. PaintCare is a non-profit organization established by the American Coatings Association to implement Paint Stewardship Programs on behalf of the paint manufacturers in states that pass paint stewardship laws. Details: California Paint Stewardship Program, paintcare.org.


Fresno Flats

Fresno Flats Friday on Nov. 8 will present author Marcia Freedman, speaking about her book, "Willow Creek History, Tales of Cow Camps, Shake Makers and Basket Weavers." It's the same Willow Creek that flows into Bass Lake which has touched the lives of the many people who have lived and worked along its banks. Freedman will share interesting stories and show many photographs. Signed copies of her book will be available.

The evening begins with dinner at 5:30 provided by Kiwanis and Fresno Flats volunteers who will serve the dinner, followed by the program. This will be the last of the dinner programs scheduled for the 2013 season.

The Cunningham School is located at Fresno Flats Museum on School Road (427). Cost is $10 for dinner and program.

Manna House nonperishable food donations will be collected that evening.


Free entry to Yosemite

In celebration of Veteran's Day, Yosemite National Park will offer free admission to the public on Saturday, Nov. 9 through Monday, Nov. 11. This fee-free weekend is offered to all visitors in honor of current members, retired members, and reserve members of the United States Armed Forces and their families.

This fee-free weekend has been observed since 2006.


'California Native Plants in our Gardens' workshop

The Oakhurst Garden Club at True Value presents the 'California Native Plants in our Gardens' workshop on Sunday Nov. 10 at 1 p.m.

The workshop will include information on landscaping for fire safety, caring for existing native plants, and tips for enjoying winter wildlife.

The workshop if free of charge and will be held at the True Value Home Center. Details: (559) 683-7117


Veterans fundraiser

The Oakhurst Elks Lodge #2724 (at the Bass Lake turn-off in Oakhurst) will host a Veterans all-you-can-eat spaghetti luncheon on Sunday Nov. 10, with no-host cocktails starting at 11 a.m., and lunch from 12-3 p.m. Color guard Knights of Columbus and entertainment The Sounds of Freedom Military Band will be featured. Cost is $10; veterans eat free. Details: (559) 683-2717 for reservations


Mickey Christmas

The Service Organization of the Sierra will host a Magical Mickey Christmas at the Oakhurst Community Center on Wednesday Nov. 13. The boutique opens at 10 a.m., with lunch served at 11:30 a.m. There will be raffle and door prizes, good food, good food and good friends. Proceeds benefit local schools, ticket donation $20. Details: (559) 641-6556, Janet Franklin for tickets


Toy Run to benefit Manna House

The Madera County Chapter of the Underlords will collect new and unwrapped toys for the Manna House Christmas toy give-away at 10 a.m. Saturday Nov. 16 at the Oak Room on Highway 41.


Bikers for Christ fundraiser

Bikers for Christ (Rushing Wind Ministries) will host a tri-tip dinner and benefit concert as a fundraiser for Manna House at Yosemite New Life Church 4:30 - 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 23. Dinner will be prepared by Rushing Wind Ministries and includes smoked tri-tip, barbecue beans, salad, roll and beverage.

Tickets can be purchased at Nelson Press, Sugar Pine Pizza and all churches. Cost is $12 each, with children 12 years of age and under at two for the price of one. A donation of dry beans or rice enters guests into gift drawings, such as a two-night stay at the Pines Resort Chalets.

All donations of non-perishable food items are accepted on behalf of Manna House. Details: Bill Rice (559) 676-0086, Mark Smith (559) 392-0416


Holiday Fest

Rivergold Elementary School will host its first annual holiday fest on Friday, Dec. 6, from 5-9 p.m. Activities include a lighted parade, photos with Santa, live and silent auctions, craft tables for gift shopping, raffles, and live entertainment. There will be a soup and baked potato bar, hot beverages and sweets.


Check Before you Burn

San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District Check Before you Burn began its 11th season Nov. 1. This wood-burning curtailment program has resulted in historically clean wintertime air quality in the valley, and continues through February.

During Check Before you Burn season, the Air District issues a daily wood-burning forecast by county: either "please burn cleanly" or "wood-burning prohibited.' When wood burning is prohibited, burning any solid fuel is not allowed. A forecast of "please burn cleanly" urges residents to use manufactured fire logs or dry, seasoned wood. Gas fireplace use is always allowed.

There are two exceptions to wood-burning prohibitions: if the residence does not have another source of heat or if the residence does not have access to natural gas-service (even if propane is used).

Using a fireplace or wood-burning device — insert, stove or pellet stove — on a prohibited day without an exemption will result in a fine.

Daily wood-burning forecasts are available each day at 4:30 p.m. at valleyair.org/aqinfo/WoodBurnPage.htm or by calling (1-800) 766-4463 Details: (559) 230-6000 (Fresno)

Check before you burn


State decathletes gather in Madera for decathlon workshop

More than 500 academic decathletes from throughout California attended the seventh annual Madera County Office of Education Academic Decathlon lecture on Oct. 24. Students attended sessions on economics, literature, music, science, social science, and speech to help them prepare for this year's Academic Decathlon.

The 2014 decathlon topic is World War I. Students from Riverside to Tuolumne Counties attended the lectures, including Yosemite High School and Chawanakee Academy.

"This event is a great opportunity for students to enhance their knowledge of the rigorous subject matter in preparation for the Academic Decathlon in February," said Cyndy Dolph, associate superintendent, Madera County Office of Education.

The event is sponsored by Madera County Office of Education and Madera County Schools Foundation.

The Academic Decathlon will be held on Saturday, Feb. 1.


Rogers named to national committee

Madera County District 2 Supervisor David Rogers has been appointed a member of The National Association of Counties (NACo) Agriculture and Rural Affairs Steering committee. This group aims to better serve and preserve Madera and other rural and agriculturally-based counties. Madera County's agricultural production tops $1 billion annually.

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