Community Briefs for Feb. 19, 2015

Stage Route Bus Tour

The popular "Stage Route" bus tour runs from 9 to 3, Saturday, April 25. Seats are $45 including lunch and special dessert. To reserve a seat, send Name, Address, Phone & Email and a check to CHS, PO Box 117, Coarsegold, 93614. More Info: 559-683-8877.

The tour begins at the Coarsegold Historic Museum (31899 Hwy 41). The bus travels up Hwy 41 to Coarsegold, then Rd 415 to Knowles. The Raymond Museum is next with a talk by lifetime resident Anita Fulmer. Then north on Rd 600 just like the freight wagons and stages did 100 years ago, stopping at historic sites along the way. Included lunch stop at Wassama Roundhouse including a fascinating history talk by a Native American Elder. On to Oakhurst to see the original site of the town of "Fresno Flats." Travel up Rd 425B, an old stage route, and down to Coarsegold for a walking tour. Arrive back at the CG museum for dessert and docent-led tours.

Karen Morris and Gaye Lews are the tour guilds who will give a running history commentary along the way.

Writing in the library

The Oakhurst Library will provide a weekly “creative space” for writers. Anyone with a desire to write is welcome. Bring laptop, notebook, pen or pencil. This group will be facilitated by published author Sandy Alonzo. Writers will meet every Monday, 3 - 4:30 p.m.

At the beginning of a meeting, each writer describes his/her goal for the session. Then, writers will separate and work either in the community room, a quiet spot in the library, or outside in the park. At the end of the meeting, writers will reconvene to discuss what transpired during their writing that day.

Details: or Sandy Alonzo at


The Sierra-Oakhurst Kiwanis will offer Bingo Night Saturday, March 14, at the Oakhurst Community Center. Doors open at 5 p.m., and bingo begins at 6:30. Drinks and cocktails, bingo prizes, a raffle, and soup and sandwich with home-made pie will be offered. In past years, Service Organization of the Sierras ran this event.

Ticket price is $20, which includes meal and bingo cards.

Details: Ram, (559) 790-5929.

Fundraising dinner

A spaghetti fundraising dinner-dance and raffle to benefit Mark Kursely will be held 4-6 p.m., Feb. 28, at the Coarsegold Community Center. The dinner costs $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12.

Details: (559) 683-5879.

Audubon field trip

The Yosemite Area Audubon Society will take a field trip to the UC Merced Vernal Pools and Grassland Reserve on Saturday, Feb. 21. It’s free and public is welcome. To carpool, meet at the Mariposa rest area adjacent to the history center just off Highway 140 in town at 7:45 a.m. Bring binoculars, field guides, lunch, beverages, and raingear. Dress in layers and wear comfortable, waterproof shoes.

Details: (209) 742-5579, (209) 966-2547,

Hitching Post dinner

The Hitching Post in Ahwahnee will hold a fundraising spaghetti dinner 5-8 p.m., Feb. 26, to benefit owner Greg Gonzalez, who recently underwent a lifesaving surgery.

Tickets cost $10 per person, and includes a raffle ticket. Take-out is also available.

Details: (559) 641-8071.

American Cancer Society Road to Recovery

Volunteers are needed to transport cancer patients to treatment in Madera County. The Road to Recovery is a free program, run by the American Cancer Society, providing patients rides to and from their cancer treatment. The organization encourages volunteers to arrange their own schedules, with some volunteering as little as one afternoon a month, and others driving patients as often as twice a week.

“If you have a car, driver’s license, insurance, and some spare time, you can help someone keep a very important appointment,” Donna Gavello, program manager, said.

Details: (800) 227-2345,

off at the Oakhurst College Center office.

To reserve a table, (559) 683-3940,

Free tax help

Free income tax return preparation and electronic filing, for both state and federal returns, will once again be available this year for Mountain Area residents, offered by the AARP Tax-Aide program. Tax help is offered to persons of all ages - you don’t have to be a senior citizen, or a member of AARP to use the service. Services are provided free of all costs and charges.

This year the program is moving from the Sierra Senior Center, where it has always been hosted, to the Community Room at the Oakhurst Library. Services will be available Tuesdays between Feb. 10 and April 7. Three Saturdays are also available, Feb. 28, March 21 and April 11, to make the services more accessible for families and working adults.

For the first time, there will also be a day of services offered in North Fork, at the Studio, on Feb. 21.

Appointments for all of these dates and locations can be made by calling Brian at (559) 285-1494.

Job Fair

The Madera County Workforce Assistance Center and the America’s Job Center are hosting a job fair from 2-5 p.m., Thursday, March 12, 2015 at the Oakhurst Community Center.

They are currently accepting business reservations for the upcoming event for business looking to fill immediate vacancies with quality workers or those just looking to build a pool of applicants for future openings. These services are provided at no cost to the business.

Details: Jorge Espinosa (559) 662-4540, or email,

German Fest

The Oakhurst Area chamber of Commerce will hold a four course German style dinner, 6 p.m., Saturday, March 7, at the Oakhurst Community Center. Major sponsors are Sierra Tel and Sullivan’s Tire Pros.

Door prize, raffle, live auction and entertainment will be offered. Tickets are $30 per person.

Details/tickets: Chamber, (559) 683-7766.

28th Annual Kids Day

Kids day is looking for volunteers to help sell special editions of The Fresno Bee on street corners throughout the Valley. Kids Day will be held Tuesday, March 3, this year. All proceeds will go to help Valley Children’s Hospital continue to meet the growing healthcare needs of children.

Details: Valley Children’s Hospital, 1-800-73-CHILD or (559) 353-7100 or go online to

Community Unity

The Oakhurst College Center will hold its annual Community Unity event on campus, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Thursday, April 30. This event brings Mountain Area vendors, service groups, and colleges together to celebrate the community. There will be free food, music, workshops, games and prize drawings.

School representatives from the faculty, academic counseling, veterans services, financial aid, and student government will be available to provide information, and answer questions. Some previous organizations attending have included First 5, Fresno State, Head Start, and Madera County Workforce Investment Corporation. Donations are welcome from anyone unable to attend. Prize donations can be dropped off at the school.