Christmas Day dinner will be served 1 p.m., at the Oakhurst Sierra Senior Center. All seniors who would otherwise be alone on Christmas Day are invited to attend. Refreshments will be available at noon, and the dinner (turkey, ham, and side dishes) will be served an hour later.
Reservations: (559) 683-3811.
Reservations are being taken for Erna’s annual New Year’s Eve Gala - “It’s all about love.” A seven course menu, paired with fine wines, and entertainment will be offered at $135 per person for the 5 p.m. seating, or $245 per person for the 9 p.m. seating.
Fireworks are back
The Pines Resort will celebrate New Year’s Eve with a bang - fireworks are back. Dinner will be served 4-10 p.m., with a sunset menu available 4-6 p.m. There will be two magic shows - 1 p.m. and 4 p.m., with the party beginning in the evening.
The cost is $25 for the sunset menu, $65 for the later dinner, and the magic show is free during lunch.
Details: (800) 350-7463, or basslake.com.
Search & Rescue volunteers
Madera County’s nationally recognized Search & Rescue Team is currently accepting new applications through the end of the year. Applications can be picked up and dropped off at either the Sheriff’s main office at 2725 Falcon Dr., Madera, or the Sheriff’s substation at 48267 Liberty Dr., Oakhurst.
Interested candidates are urged to complete and submit an application, they must be received no later than December 31st, 2015. You must be 18 or older to apply. The Madera County Sheriff’s Office provides training. Novices are more than welcome. Applicants accepted into the program will undergo a 100 hour class and field training course.
The Madera County Sheriffs Search & Rescue Team is trained and certified to carry out the following rescue and recovery functions: 4X4 Team, Dive/Swiftwater Team, Technical Rope Rescue Team, Snowmobile Team, Communication Team, Medical Team, Incident Command Team, OHV Team, Operation Lost & Found Team, and Canine Team.
With several major storms coming through the area, Yosemite National Park has closed Tioga Road for the season.
YNP is open year-round with snow removal on all other roads within the park. All roads are subject to chain control or temporary closures due to hazardous driving conditions. All motorists are required to carry tire chains, even if their car is equipped with four-wheel drive, while driving in the park during the winter months.
For updated 24-hour road and weather conditions for YNP, call 209-372-0200.
Coolwater Ranch will present a concert with Tony McManus, 7 p.m.., Jan 16. McManus has come to be recognized throughout the world as the leading guitarist in Celtic music. He has performed on five continents, and was recognized by the readers of Acoustic Guitar magazine.
Details: Robin, (559) 760-1134.
Advocates push to implement assisted death law
Supporters of an assisted death bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown in October are pushing for policymakers to implement the law, which is currently on hold.
Patients must wait months before acquiring life-ending medication under the law, which won’t take effect until 90 days after a legislative health care session comes to an end.
Madera receives national rank in job growth
The Madera Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes most of Madera County, was ranked 32 in the Milken Institute’s 2015 Best-Performing Cities category for job growth. Madera was ranked 69 in the report last year.
Earlier this year, New Geography ranked Madera number one as best place for manufacturing jobs, along with a top ranking from Forbes for farming and agribusiness.
Pot ballot gaining strength
A handful of people in the state’s marijuana community are supporting a recreational legalization effort from Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.
A majority of the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform board agreed to withdraw support for a previous proposed measure, and instead endorse the Adult Use of Marijuana Act to legalize and tax the plant.
Newsom, as well as former Facebook President Sean Parker, are working to form a united front on the bill, to avoid any competing measures in next fall’s ballot.