Community News - edition of May 11

North Fork fire

A North Fork family of nine was left homeless Monday morning after a fire destroyed their home on Church Street.

“The family’s lost everything,” Cal Fire Captain Paul Rotondaro told ABC30. “All their clothes, belongings, everything else. We’ve got them set up with the Red Cross to take care of all that. But for right now, they’ve lost it all.”

The family of a man, woman, and their seven children all lived in the destroyed home. The fire started around 1 a.m., and the woman was able to get everyone to safety after she smelled smoke.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Alzheimer’s seminar

Mountain Area family caregivers are encouraged to attend a free seminar on Alzheimer’s disease, 10 - 11:30 a.m., May 23, at the Oakhurst Lutheran Church, Crane Valley Road (426) and Black Road.

A speaker from the UCSF Fresno Alzheimer’s and Memory Center will discuss the basic symptoms of Alzheimer’s, communication strategies, and responses to common dementia related behaviors.

Seats for the seminar are limited, and pre-registration is required by contacting the Valley Caregiver Resource Center, (800) 541-8614, or Carol Breit, (559) 683-4045.

HOW dinner May 17

Shania Faith Costella, the 16-year-old Yosemite High student who lost her life in a car accident Jan. 7, once said “never take life for granted.”

With that motto, the Helping One Woman (HOW) organization will hold a fundraising dinner for Shania’s mother, Nina, 6 p.m. May 17 inside the Yosemite High School gymnasium.

Guests are asked to make a $10 donation at the door for a spaghetti dinner with bread and salad. There will also be prize drawings.

HOW follows the philosophy that one woman with $10 can buy another woman lunch, 10 women with $10 can buy another woman groceries, and 100 women with $10 can make a lasting difference in another woman’s life.

Details: Nancy Fikkert, (559) 658-5428.

Memorial Day

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 8741 and Marine Corps League Griswold Detachment No. 1121 will conduct Memorial Day ceremonies at four cemeteries in the Mountain Area to honor our nation’s veterans. The ceremonies, held Monday, May 29, will consist of a reading and placement of flowers and a flag on a veteran’s grave, followed by three rifle volleys and the playing of “Taps.”

The first ceremony is 9 a.m. at the Indian Cemetery at Wassama Round House in Ahwahnee, followed by the Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst at 10 a.m., Picayune Cemetery above Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino at 11 a.m., and the North Fork Cemetery at 1 p.m..

Music in the Meadow

Coarsegold Historic Society will host its 13th Annual Music in the Meadow from 12 - 4 p.m. Saturday, June 3, at the Coarsegold Historic Museum. There will be a silent auction, a 50-50 drawing, and food available by area Kiwanis.

The Executive Rockers band will also provide live music such as oldies, classic rock, 80s, and country. Admission is $10.

Details: (559) 642-4448.

Roadside litter cleanup

Keep Our Mountains Beautiful will have its next roadside litter cleanup event Saturday, May 13, along Road 200 from Highway 41 to North Fork.

Participants are asked to meet at the North Fork Post Office, or the park-and-ride at Highway 41 and Road 200 between 9 - 9:30 a.m.

Details: Sandee Scott, (559) 760-1058, Judy, (559) 877-2361.

Mariposa art exhibit

Mariposa County Arts Council is hosting “Hand-to-Hand,” an installation by veteran Ehren Tool, until July 16. The installation includes over 200 ceramic cups addressing issues and concerns facing veterans and service members.

Details: (209) 966-3155.

Democratic Club meeting

The Oakhurst Democratic Club will host Tim Hernandez during the group’s next meeting at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, June 3, inside Denny’s on Highway 41.

Hernandez is an American writer, poet and performer raised in the San Joaquin Valley as the son of migrant farm workers. His books and research have been featured in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and NPR’s “All Things Considered.”

The public is encouraged to attend the meeting.

Audobon trip to Foresta

Yosemite Conservancy invites the public to an Audobon field trip to Foresta in Yosemite National Park on May 20. The trip will begin in El Portal, and make stops along the Merced River as the group looks for Peregrine Falcons and Black Swifts.

Most of the day will be spent on foot in Foresta, covering about two miles of habitats looking for several species of birds.

The group suggests anyone wishing to attend bring binoculars, water, snacks or a lunch, and layered clothing.

To take part, meet at the Yosemite Conservancy office, 5020 El Portal Road, before 7:45 a.m. The Conservancy will waive entrance fees to Yosemite National Park. The approximate time for the trip to end is 1-1:30 p.m.

Details: Pete Devine, (209) 379-2321, ext. 12,