North Coast Journal 05-03-12 Edition
The North Coast Journal of Politics, People & Art is a guide to what’s really happening on the far North Coast of California.
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Samsung, Galaxy Sand Aviator are all trademarks of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. � 2012 U.S. Cellular t 2 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com tableof 4 7 8 Mailbox Poem Unearth sUper pay 28 Music&More! 30 StageMatters Wedding ring tone News 10 BlogJammin' 12 OnTheCover service directory sUm of the parts 31 Calendar 34 InReview 35 Filmland a book and a cd a long, Winding aisle cartoon by andreW goff a place in the Woods 19 Home&Garden 22 ArtBeat 37 Seven-o-Heaven 37 Workshops 39 FieldNotes 41 41 42 45 47 FURNITURE 23 ArtsAlive! satUrday, may 5, 6-9 p.m. 25 MoreArtsNights 27 TheHum ON THE Sudoku six rivers (by any other name) PLAZA Stop by any of our locations or shop online at humboldthydroponics.com In Humboldt County: Arcata 601 I St. 822-3377 trinidad: friday, may 4, 6-9 p.m. garberville: friday, may 4, 5:30 p.m. hold the mayo Crossword Marketplace Body,Mind&Spirit RealEstateThisWeek Eureka 1302 Union St. 443-4304 Garberville/Redway Rio Dell 2010 Tunnel Rd. 923-1402 770 Wildwood St. 764-5200 ON FURNITURE THE PLAZA Hours: Mon-Sat 10-6, Sun 12-5 � � 813 Street, ArcataArcata � 822-0312 Hours: Mon-Sat 10-6, Sun 12-5 813 H H Street, � 822-0312 northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 3 Jealous or Puzzled? Editor: Two things occur to the relic as she puzzles over the alleged merit of so many of the Flash Fiction submissions ("Fiction in a Flash," April 26). Probably she is just jealous, resentfully self-flagellating for not having been disciplined or focused enough to submit an entry of her own stellar nonsense. Or maybe she simply needs to cook up something from Chef Sicard's new marijuana cookbook, to see if upon reconsideration any of the flashes make any more sense the second time around. Then she realizes, what does she know about writing, anyway? Catherine Barnes, Eureka Ersatz Democrats? Editor: I want to thank Ryan Burns for his article ("Dem Schism," April 26) about the battle over seats in the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee. It is important that voters are aware of what is at stake in an election that often attracts little inter- est. I feel, however, that the article missed some of the significance of this division. The four candidates seeking to defeat the incumbents are part of a long-planned effort to take over the leadership of the local Democratic Party. Looking at what those individuals have said, how they have voted in public office and who they have supported in past elections, it is clear that they do not represent Democratic principles. One has long been a darling of the local Republican party, and only recently switched, putting a "D" after her name probably with an opportunistic eye to winning higher office in the party that carries more votes in this county. They are trying to appeal to Democrats by using the mantra of "jobs" just as national Republicans are. What they mean is a few short-term construction jobs on developments that will contribute to urban sprawl, undercut existing businesses and inflate profits for their economic backers. True Democratic principles support sustainable jobs, responsible land use planning and long-range environmental protection. But there is more to consider here than philosophical differences. The incumbents have for years been the worker bees of the local party -- registering voters, doing mailings, staffing the headquarters, running campaigns and doing all the unglamorous nitty gritty work of putting together fundraisers. Three of the four insurgents 4 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com of f day he newness tt ree e good ries. G th r h luebe t wi h b s re Available at all Humboldt County McDonalds locations At participating McDonald's. Limited time offer. �2012 McDonald's. CartooN by Joel Mielke haven't done squat along these lines. They suddenly want to be party leaders when they have never worked in the trenches. Why should we think that, if elected, they will do any more work besides supporting their cronies? So, if Democratic voters want their party led by real Democrats who have earned their leadership positions, they should vote for Linda Atkins, Bob Service and Pam Service for County Democratic Central Committee on June 5. Pam Service, Eureka Editor: As a longtime member of the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee (HCDCC), I feel it is imperative that the voters in the 2nd Supervisorial District know that HCDCC did not endorse Estelle Fennel, the Democratic candidate running for that seat against incumbent Clif Clendenen, after she sought our endorsement. It takes 60 percent of the attending voting members of HCDCC for an endorsement continued on page 7 northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 5 Sunny Brae �Glendale Trinidad � Cutten � Westwood Meet our Staff "I'm going to take a chance on you," is what Carlos Avelar, the store manager, said ten years ago when Jaime Graves, a new kid in town, applied for a job at Murphy's Market in Sunny Brae. Murphy's is known for its friendly stores because the employees are local people who already know the neighborhood customers. Jaime, however, didn't know anyone. But that was then and this is now. Sitting outside Murphy's on a break, Jaime spoke with each person by name. "Because Carlos took the chance with me, I wanted to prove myself. I know now that customers are wonderful and the kids, they always make me feel great!" Jaime asked little Milo, who was walking with his dad, "How is school going?", to which Milo replied, "I like math. Divides and times are my favorites." Jaime's dad is a retired Marine which meant they moved often. Jaime, who lives so close to the market that she walks to work, says about Humboldt County and Murphy's Market, "This is the first place where I feel I truly belong." wi th Prices Effective May 2 through May 15, 2012 10 M ur ar Ye y ph Jaime Graves 's M ark s ets Arrowhead 6 Pak .5 L Spring Water C2O Coconut Water 17.5 Oz. Back to Nature Assorted Varieties 5-8 Oz. Organic Crackers Reed's 4 Pak 12 Oz. Ginger Brew 1 99 Ea. + CRV 1 49 Ea. + CRV 2 6 2 7 For $ For $ + CRV 6 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com continued from page 5 and Ms. Fennell's requested endorsement did not get those numbers. Why did we not endorse her? Many of our members voiced concerns about her work for the last 2.5 years as the executive director of HumCPR (Humboldt Coalition for Property Rights -- "Protecting Your Rural Lifestyle") and the stand that it supports concerning our County's General Plan Update, a stand that many members of our organization do not agree with. Concerns were also raised for where Ms. Fennell's campaign funds are coming from. By simply following the money and looking at her contributions reported, Ms. Fennell has received campaign contributions from the same local companies and individuals who are also funding the campaigns of Rex Bohn and Karen Brooks. In accepting their donations, she has aligned herself with their political wants and desires. Most of these donations come from outside the 2nd Supervisorial District, a district which she says will always come first with her. Yet her campaign funds indicate otherwise. I urge all 2nd District voters to look at the facts before you cast your vote. Chris Beresford, Bayside Voting Fail #2 Editor: Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap raises some very troubling concerns in her letter "Voting Fail" (Mailbox, April 26), about congressional candidate Stacey Lawson's abysmal lack of a voting record. For this young multimillionaire, who now aspires to be our next elected representative to Congress, to have only voted in four of the last 12 elections (on top of her having zero experience as an elected official, which is very reminiscent of Meg Whitman, another multimillionaire who aspired to be elected with no experience and an embarrassing lack of a personal voting record), should be most troubling to anyone considering casting a vote for Ms. Lawson. But it's even worse than that. What Kaitlin failed to point out is that while Stacey couldn't be bothered to vote in 2008, an election which included an opportunity for her to vote against Proposition 8, which outlawed marriage equality in this state, she did bother to donate $10,000 to multiple candidates in the same election cycle! So Stacey apparently feels that her money can buy votes, even when she can't be bothered to vote herself. None of this is very promising for a would-be Congress member who we would hope will study the issues and vote for us every time. I am also concerned, as I was with Meg Whitman, about Ms. Lawson's efforts now to try to buy your vote and mine with her heavy media blitz, which has only just begun. I've studied the candidates and done a reasonable analysis of the race. The candidate of the status quo is clearly Jared Huffman, and he will undoubtedly make it into the runoff in November, so the competition in this "open primary" is for second place. Of the "alternative to the status quo" candidates, I feel the most qualified is third-term [Marin] County Supervisor Susan Adams. Of the major contenders she is also the candidate with the closest ties to the North Coast and the one who I feel would best represent Humboldt County in Congress. I hope you'll join me casting your vote on June 5 to make Adams the second name on the November ballot. Pam Cahill, Bayside Please join me Thursday, May 10th from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. for a "Meet and Greet" Fundraiser and Silent Auction in the Colonnade Room of the historic Eureka Inn. Admission to the event is $20. Appetizers and beverages provided. Annette De Modena For 1st District Supervisor ID# 1338830 PO Box 6980 � Eureka, CA 95502 :: 336 Grotto Street � Eureka, CA 95501 Ph: 707.476.0531 :: Fax: 707.476.0541 :: www.annette4supervisor.com � Unearth What we call poor must be more than a little red silt collected in the lungs, a harder kind of breathing. The men in the mines listen. Their questions, the private ones they keep buried deeper than the shafts they sweat or shiver in, are answered only by their own voices, echoing back at them, the nervous laugh at a blue remark, reverberating through tunnels. Instead of a bird and it's yellow singing, captive and sad in lamp-lit darkness, someone has brought his dog, a dirty white muzzle lying mostly in sleep. When the mutt sits up, barks at the flickering of shadows on stone walls, hacked and jagged, it's not annoyance the men feel, but relief. They pause to gawk at the yellow teeth, to stare into the well of open mouth, to mutter, to close their eyes and watch their women. They remember the breasts beneath the blouses, hands washing fine baby hair, cradling a soft skull, fingers dipping dishes into water, pulling shreds of meat from bones, peeling skin from fruit so much sweeter in absence, palms warming to cheek, chest, ridge of hipbone, all that touching. When the dog, the last huff and grumble of the dog, goes dormant, the men turn back into their back-breaking work. One man hands a tool to another. The only human sounds breaching the damp air, ringing above the clanking and wheeling, are words. Is this what you wanted? -- Kimberley Pittman-Schulz northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 7 Great Ideas for Mother's Day! May 3, 2012 Volume XXIII No. 18 North Coast Journal Inc. www.northcoastjournal.com IssN 1099-7571 � Copyright 2012 Super Pay By Heidi Walters email@example.com The North Coast Journal is a weekly newspaper serving Humboldt County. Circulation: 21,000 copies distributed FREE at more than 350 locations. Mail subscriptions: $39 / 52 issues. Single back issues mailed / $2.50. Entire contents of the North Coast Journal are copyrighted. No article may be reprinted without publisher's written permission. Printed on recycled paper with soy-based ink. For super work, say the county's five supervisors OPEN MON- FRI. 9-5:30, SAT 9-5 � 443.4851 3950 JACOBS AVE. (HWY 101) EUREKA w w w. c a r l j o h n s o n c o . c o m publisher Judy Hodgson firstname.lastname@example.org editor Carrie Peyton Dahlberg email@example.com art director Holly Harvey production manager Carolyn Fernandez staff writer/a&e editor Bob Doran firstname.lastname@example.org staff writer/copy editor Heidi Walters email@example.com staff writer Ryan Burns firstname.lastname@example.org staff writer Zach St. George email@example.com calendar editor Andrew Goff firstname.lastname@example.org contributing writers John J. Bennett, Simona Carini, Barry Evans, William S. Kowinski, Mark Shikuma, Amy Stewart graphic design/production Lynn Jones, Alana Chenevert, Drew Hyland production interns Kimberly Hodges, Jonathan Webster sales manager Mike Herring email@example.com advertising Colleen Hole firstname.lastname@example.org advertising Shane Mizer email@example.com advertising Karen Sack firstname.lastname@example.org office manager Carmen England classified assistant Sophia Dennler 310 F st., Eureka, Ca 95501 PHoNe: 707 442-1400 faX: 707 442-1401 MaIl/offIce: E very now and again, what our Board of Supervisors members are paid comes into question -- because they're public officials; because the pay (up to $82,000) is more than decent compared, say, to the median household wage in Humboldt County which hovers around $35,000 to $40,000. In 2010, the Humboldt County Grand Jury recommended the board reduce its members' salaries in 2011, based on a comparison with neighboring counties. The county dismissed the Grand Jury's report, citing factual errors and invalid comparisons. Nevertheless, that same year, though the board approved pay raises for its members, a couple members objected and most ended up not taking them. Last November, again, board members decided not to take raises for the next two years. This being an election year with seven candidates vying for three seats, we're revisiting the supervisors' pay. Using figures from the state controller's database for 2010 -- the latest available -- we compared Humboldt supervisor pay with that of supervisors in counties whose population is within 50,000 of Humboldt's 133,400, and determined pay per capita. (See chart.) In that grouping, Humboldt supervisors come out as the third highest paid per capita, with Napa's supervisors making the next highest and Mendocino's the highest. It's worth noting, perhaps, that only two counties hired assistants for their supervisors -- El Dorado and Madera both have six. And only some counties' supervisors contributed to their pensions: Kings ($4,439), Madera ($5,924), Napa ($3,164), and Sutter ($2,297). So what do our supervisors say about all of this? They manage a budget of around $300,000 million. They make between roughly $69,500 and $82,500. Are they paid too little? Too much? All five supervisors said they think their pay is fair. They all said they put in up to 70 hours per week performing supervisorrelated duties. They each serve on at least 14 other committees, including some at the state level. Some have declined raises in years past. Last November, all of the board members decided not to take pay raises for the next two years, citing solidarity with the bad economic times all around. They each get a little defensive, and press releases email@example.com letters to the editor firstname.lastname@example.org events/a&e email@example.com music firstname.lastname@example.org production email@example.com sales firstname.lastname@example.org classified/workshops email@example.com Grizzly Creek state Park. Photo by Ken Malcomson. on the cover: � 8 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com What They Make In this chart we compared Humboldt County supervisor salaries to those of supervisors in counties whose population is within 50,000, more or less, of Humboldt's. We averaged the five members' salaries in each for "typical compensation." Then we calculated the per-capita pay. COUNTY POPUlaTiON TYPiCal COMPENSaTiON COMPENSaTiON PER CaPiTa PENSiON FORMUla EMPlOYEE PENSiON CONTRiBUTiON El Dorado Kings Madera Napa 182,019 156,289 153,655 138,917 $76,800 $69,000 $73,300 $90,568 0.42 0.44 0.47 0.65 2% @ 55 2% @ 55 2.7% @ 55 2.5% @ 55 3 3 3 3 Humboldt Sutter Nevada Mendocino 133,400 99,154 98,680 90,289 $75,468 $35,300 $44,558 $72,150 0.57 0.36 0.45 0.79 2.7% at 55 2.7% @ 55 2.7% @ 55 2% @ 57 sourCes: CaliforNia state CoNtroller's offiCe aNd North Coast JourNal researCh proud, when asked about their pay and what they do to earn it. "Yes, I get a decent salary, and yes, we need to be accountable to the public," said 1st District Supervisor Jimmy Smith, who has served three terms and is retiring this year. "I think it's equally important that the public know we respect those dollars." Don't compare him to some part-time supervisor like some counties employ, he said. "Compare me to the consultant who does the engineering for the drainage system," he said. Smith said he has spent days with that consultant, and weekends on his own, out examining ditches. He gets up at 5 a.m. to dive into supervisor business. Goes to bed at 10 p.m. Smith makes $74,000, has taken two 10-percent salary cuts and has turned down five years-worth of 3-percent annual raises. He gets 5 percent longevity pay -- the first year he got it, he paid it back to the county by check. Subsequent years, he's used it for expenses -- supervisors don't have an expense account like they did more than a decade ago, he said. "Right now I have on my desk 10 invitations to go places, and I pay all the way," he said. "For example, the League of Women Voters lunch is $65. I pay. I also pay a selfimposed assessment to the fire districts of Loleta, Ferndale, Honeydew and Petrolia each year -- $150 to $200 each." Second District Supervisor Clif Clendenen, who makes $72,900 and has been on the board since 2009, likewise said he probably pays a few thousand out of pocket for expenses he incurs in the line of supervisor duty. He, like Smith, has declined recent raises. Clendenen said it's tough to compare his sprawling district -- which includes Shelter Cove -- to that of an urban supervisor's elsewhere. Third District Supervisor Mark Lovelace, who came on in 2008, takes home about $69,000. He, too, has rejected raises. But he thinks the workload justifies the pay he does get. "It doesn't even begin to cover all of the meals, dinners and events that we all go to that are kind of part of the job, kind of an obligation, but not covered out of county expenses -- thousands and thousands of dollars go into just being where you need to be for this job," he said. "If I was working an hourly wage, with time and a half and double time, my salary would probably break down to $17 an hour. Because I work basically every waking hour." In keeping with the three-year stepped pay increases an earlier board negotiated (but which many have declined), the base pay for a supervisor had already reached about $80,000 by the time 4th District Supervisor Virginia Bass and 5th District Supervisor Ryan Sundberg came on the board almost a year and a half ago. So they make more: Bass about $82,000 and Sundberg $81,000. Bass said she made a roughly $10,000 contribution back to the county recently. She said that, after years in the restaurant business "working obscene hours" for less pay, it's nice to be better compensated. And the hours are still long, she said -- not like when her dad, O.H. Bass, was supervisor in the 1970s, and he could go to work at 6:30 a.m. and cut meat all morning, report for supervisor duties in the middle of the day, then return to his regular work that afternoon. It's full-time work now. Aside from the assorted other duties, the board meetings themselves are timeintensive. "I go in, get my board packet, take it to the gym and exercise on the elliptical with the highlighter in my hand." If the public wants to cut supervisor pay, she'd consider it. But in that case, she said, "the community needs to decide what it does not want the supervisors to do." Sundberg said he took a $2,000-amonth pay cut when he closed his insurance practice and left his position on the Trinidad Rancheria Tribal Council to become a supervisor. "I'm basically the city council for all the 5th District except for little Trinidad," he said. "So every pothole, dog barking, neighbors loud, building issue -- all those little things that come up are all mine. In larger areas, the city councils take care of things." But he said he didn't think he'd be negotiating for a raise anytime soon. So how did the salaries get to their current level? According to documents provided by county staff, before 1999, the board members' salary was a set percentage of what superior court judges make. Then a law that tied board salaries to judges' salaries changed, and in July 1999 the board passed an ordinance to begin setting its members' own salaries. Salaries rose from $46,563 that year to $60,688 in 2002, plus a bonus week of pay each July. Like other county employees, they started getting longevity pay -- which today is 5 percent after 10 years and 10 percent after 20. In April 2005 their salaries jumped to $71,755; in 2006 to $73,922; and in 2007 to $74,661. But they lost the bonus week of pay. In 2008, the board voted 3-2 to amend the ordinance setting its salary yet again, with 3-percent raises for the next three years, bringing the supervisor salary to $81,584 by June 2010. But even the supervisors who voted for the raise declined to take it. l northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 9 Blog Jammin' KEEP ON THE GRASS! PHOTO BY ANDREW GOFF ACTIVISM, GOVERNMENT/ BY ANDREW GOFF / MONDAY, 11:41 A.M. Keep On The Grass About 5� months after it went up, the fence surrounding the Humboldt County Courthouse lawn is gone. A frequent target of Occupy Eureka signage and disdain, the barrier was removed this morning by county officials and the vendor from whom the fence was rented. As you'd expect, occupiers happily rolled right on to the grass, enjoying what they perceived as a slight symbolic victory. "I think in some ways we have beaten them," occupier James Decker said. "They have not been able to get rid of us." But in case you're worried that the county has surrendered to the power of Occupy Eureka, know that there is non-political reasoning behind the fence removal. "We determined that the rainy season is over," said Assistant County Administrative Officer Cheryl Dillingham. "The lawn can accommodate foot traffic again." Well, great. But it could sure use a mow. Atomizers $219.95 Sulfur Burners $85.95 Battery-Powered Sprayers $145.95 SALE! Prices Valid Through June 1St Open Mon-Sat 10am - 6pm Sunday 10am - 5pm 707.826.7435 On Hwy. 101, in the Bracut Industrial Park 10 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com www.northcoastjournal.com/blogthing READ FULL POSTS AND SEE PHOTOS AT POLITICS / BY RYAN BURNS / APRIL 26, 4:01 P.M. Polling Shenanigans PART 1: Late last month, Claire Josefine got a phone call from an anonymous pollster. The woman asked Josefine to rank a list of issues (education, the environment, jobs, etc.) from most to least important and then asked who she intends to vote for in the 1st Supervisorial District, where Josefine lives. Recalling the phone conversation earlier this week, Josefine said she told the woman that she'll be voting for Cheryl Seidner. Asked if she had a second choice Josefine said, "No," and the woman, sounding enthused, responded, "OK, great! Can I tell Cheryl?" Josefine recalled. "I thought that was weird," Josefine said. The pollster also reportedly asked if Josefine would like a Seidner lawn sign, which also seemed odd because Josefine has been volunteering for the Seidner campaign and she'd heard nothing about phone polls. After hanging up with the pollster, Josefine called a campaign orga- nizer who confirmed that, sure enough, nobody with the Seidner campaign was conducting any polling. Over the next few weeks, the Seidner campaign received a number of calls from confused 1st District residents saying that they, too, had received polling calls. Former State Assemblymember Patty Berg -- who lives in the 1st -- was called twice, and the script, as recalled to the Journal, was nearly identical. "He asked if I'd be willing to put up a yard sign," Berg remembered. "I said, `I already have two.' He asked if I'd be willing to assist her [Seidner]. I said, `I already am.'" Just who is conducting the poll? Good question. The other two candidates in the race -- Rex Bohn and Annette de Modina -- say they know nothing about it. Anyone else out there gotten one of these calls? Let us know. PART 2: The few internal campaign polls released in the 2nd District U.S. Congressional race all have one thing in common: Jared Huffman is in the lead. ... A much-cited poll from March was leaked by Huffman's own campaign earlier this month, showing the state assemblyman ahead with 24 percent of likely voters saying they plan to vote for him on June 5. Entrepreneur Stacey Lawson was next with 9 percent, followed by activist/media critic Norman Solomon with 7 percent and three candidates (Marin County Supervisor Susan Adams and Bay Area Republicans Dan Roberts and Michael Haliwell) tied for fourth with 5 percent. ... Thirty-five percent of respondents remained undecided. Compare that with a poll released by Norman Solomon`s campaign yesterday: "Huffman currently leads with 18 percent, followed by Solomon with 10 percent, then ... Adams (8 percent), and Lawson in fourth place (5 percent). The remaining candidates, including both Republicans, all receive 3 percent or less." Like Huffman's poll, the findings were based on 500 phone interviews with a random sample of likely 2012 primary election voters. Now let's look at a poll released by Earth First! organizer and Humboldt County resident Andy Caffrey: Again, Huffman is on top with 23 percent, but below that things get weird. For one thing, Caffrey's poll places him in a close fourth place, with 8 percent support. Both of the other polls give him less than 3 percent. Straining credulity even further is where he puts mega-fundraising contender Stacey Lawson: 1 percent -- and nowhere in the last seven months has she surpassed 2 percent, according to Caffrey's poll. We contacted Caffrey to ask about the methodology of his poll. He responded via email that he hires a consulting firm in Illinois called Triumph Political, and that Triumph contracts out the actual polling to a third-party company. "I do not know anything about that firm and have no contact with it," Caffrey said. A brief Google search returned no results for an Illinois firm called Triumph Political. ... UPDATE: On Monday, Caffrey posted a comment on his campaign Facebook page, saying that Triumph Political has changed its name to TPB Consulting. He still didn't know who's conducting his polls. northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 11 A Place in the Woods THE AUBUCHON FAMILY SWIMMING AT GRIZZLY CREEK, JULY 1945. PHOTO COURTESY OF RON AUBUCHON As park closure deadline nears, a scramble to save what we can By Heidi Walters I t was overcast that August morning, we're just dying to know what you're doing. like that and cool enough for a campfire. TheWe keep hearing this beeping, and we see one a few Augusts ago, full of familiar resa Aubuchon sat by the fire reading you get up and lift this lid, then add some routine and random wonders, might not a book. coals ..." happen again at Grizzly Creek Redwoods Like a lot of Fortuna families, the They looked at Aubuchon expectantly. State Park -- nor at Benbow Lake State Aubuchons treated this campground like an She lifted the lid, looked in, and removed Recreation Area nor dozens of other state outdoor home away from home for a couple the pot from the fire. She counted the cinparks in California which, this summer, of weeks each summer. On this midweek namon rolls inside, then counted the women could close indefinitely. The Department of morning, the rest of her family had gone to again, then glanced through the trees at Parks and Recreation announced last year it town -- to work or get supplies, check the the four men hanging back, looking wary would have to shut down 70 of its 278 state mail, do some laundry, maybe pay some bills. but hopeful. She had just enough to feed parks by July 1, 2012, everybody. Later in the day when they returned and the because there is afternoon sun had warmed the river, no more money they'd all go for a swim in that sweet to run them. The spot in the Van Duzen where Grizzly closures were anCreek pours in. nounced after the A beeping erupted next to AubuLegislature cut $11 chon. She turned off the timer, got up, million in general grabbed a long tool and lifted the lid fund support for off the Dutch oven propped in the fire. the parks system She peered inside: a long ways to go from last year's yet. She put the lid back, replaced the budget and cooled coals nestled on it with hot ones, set the timer for another eight minutes, and returned to her book. She repeated these motions often, each time sinking again into her book, until a half hour had BUCHON URTESY OF RON AU passed. MILY, 1942 PHOTO CO THE JOHNSON FA Beep-beep-beepbeep. Surely, now, they would be done. She stood up again and then stopped, staring across the campfire at the road that flanked her campsite. Four women stood there, alert as raccoons, watching her. "Well," said one THERESA AUBUCHON MAKING of them, "we're A GRIZZLY CREEK CAMPOUT: THE AUBUCHON, NEEDHAM AND SUSMILCH COBBLER IN A DUTCH OVEN. two sites away and PHOTO COURTESY OF RON AUBUCHON FAMILIES. PHOTO COURTESY OF RON AUBUCHON Such perfect days threatened to increase the reduction to $22 million in the 2012-2013 budget. Since then, private, public and nonprofit entities have temporarily rescued 11 of the parks from closure by donating money or offering to run the parks themselves. The National Park Service, for instance, will run Del Norte Coast Redwoods and two other state parks for a year, said Roy Stearns, state parks deputy director. Negotiations are under way with potential saviors to keep another 24 parks open -- including Grizzly Creek, Benbow and, not far south in Mendocino County, Standish-Hickey. In addition, the state has solicited requests for proposals from concessionaires to run 11 of those parks. Meanwhile, efforts to halt the closures or make it easier for non-state operators have been ongoing by nonprofits such as the California State Parks Foundation, which fundraises and advocates for state parks. The foundation started a Save Our State Parks Campaign, has met with every state legislator, and has co-sponsored several bills -- including Jared Huffman's recently approved AB42, which allows nonprofits to enter into agreements to run state parks. Foundation spokesperson Alexis Stoxen said a new Huffman bill directs the Department of Parks and Recreation to find new ways to fund parks and make them more selfsufficient -- by collecting entry fees instead of just parking fees, for instance, or starting a license plate fund. (Currently, the majority of the park system's funding comes from the general fund.) But the clock is ticking. Will deals happen in time to ward of closures this summer? What is to become of Humboldt's doomed three -- Grizzly, Benbow and Fort Humboldt State Historic Park? 12 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com CAP'N ZACH'S Fresh from our Boat to You Family owned and Operated since 1996 (market and weather permitting) 11am -6pm � Call 839-9059 Corner of Central & Reasor, McKinleyville CRAB HOUSE DUNGENESS CRAB OPEN THURS.- SUN. Bayfront Restaurant One F Street, Eureka, CA 443-7489 Open Daily 11-9:30pm | BayfrontRestaurant.net Ping!Pongpongpongpongpongpong. The bird called from somewhere high. Then came the uh-uh-uh-uh-uh of a woodpecker knocking on a snag. A car pulled into a moss-covered space in the parking lot next to the only other car there. Its middle-aged occupants got out, stretched, locked the doors and wandered up the trail with their dogs, the skunky eau d'Humboldt wafting off their clothing. They walked past the quaint, cabin-like visitor center. It was shuttered for the day, as was the fee booth at the entrance, and there was no ranger in sight. But a self-pay notice on one wall of the visitor center encouraged visitors to grab a small envelope from the box nearby, put their camping or day-use fee in, and deposit it in the slot. The campground host's RV space likewise was empty, save for a forlorn white plastic chair. Only one of the 32 campsites had an occupant in it, but then it was April, not the height of camping season. Over where the ranger, on summer nights, would deliver campfire talks, catastrophe had recently struck -- a redwood, felled by wind, had landed on the amphitheater and busted several benches. Somebody had been sawing the tree into firewood and stacking it neatly to the side. Tall trees, some with blooming trillium at their feet, filtered the cloud-thinned sunlight. The Van Duzen was a cold roar of muddy jade brightened by white riffles, and Grizzly Creek chattered loudly in from the side, full and willow-tugging swift. In some ways, the dappled emptiness seemed just another pre-busy-season Saturday in early April, the quiet prelude before the regulars -- the Aubuchons and other families continued on next page Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park Hunan, Szechuan, Peking, Cantonese & Asian Cooking Beer & Wine Lunch & Dinner 7 Days a Week 4th & D Streets � Eureka 269-2618 "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." Virginia Woolf 835 J Street, Arcata � 822-WISH Open For Dinner @ 5:30 pm T ues-Sun GRIZZLY CREEK STATE PARK PHOTO BY KEN MALCOMSON northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 13 continued from previous page who've come here for decades -- show up to mingle with folks from around the world. But it also felt like a premonition of abandonment. Grizzly, 17 miles east of Fortuna on Highway 36, is just 430 acres. It consists of three parcels, including the original patch of woods donated in 1943 by Owen Cheatham, the founder of Georgia Pacific Corp. (yes, the timber products company). A grove of old growth redwoods named after Cheatham was acquired in 1983 with help from the Save the Redwoods League. The park's 4.5 miles of trail wend through a virgin redwood grove where part of Return of the Jedi was filmed and through leafy woods of tanoak and maple. Near the river and campsites there's a horsehoe pit, exhibits, picnic tables and the visitor center. And there's the river for swimming in the summer when the water has slowed and warmed. The campground is open year-round, and the day use area is open sunrise to sunset. On average, the park draws more than 27,000 visitors a year. Normally the state assigns a full-time maintenance person to the park and a full-time ranger, plus three seasonal employees for 4� months in the summer. Because of the impending closure, the ranger was reassigned to Humboldt Redwoods State Park farther south on Highway 101, said Michelle Gardner, interim director of the state's North Coast Redwoods District and superintendent of the Eel River sector. The seasonals will have to find work elsewhere. Only the maintenance worker has been kept on, for now; he'll be able to transfer to another position in the system if the park does close. So, who would take on this remote little park by the river, where redwoods mingle with Doug fir and madrone, mossy-trunked tanoak and big-leaf maple, where trillium opens its three-petaled pale face to the world each spring, where big cats roam and woodpeckers rattle on dead wood, where countless people from near and far have whiled away the summer weeks in a neighborly outdoor fashion? Well, Humboldt County might. Last week, the county sent a proposal to California State Parks headquarters in Sacramento to keep the park open from May 16, 2012, to May 15, 2013, using a combination of county staff, state staff and volunteers. In addition, the nonprofit Save the Redwoods League has tentatively committed to giving the county up to $60,000 for Grizzly Creek -- with the caveat that some of that money be used to develop a long-term strategy to fund and maintain it into the future. "We could run Grizzly pretty cost- Benbow Lake State Recreation Area ABOVE swaiN's Flat, where loCals aNd CaMpers like to buy their goods aNd grub. RIGHT store atteNdaNt tiM garvey. photos by keN MalCoMsoN effectively," Hank Seemann, the county environmental services manager, said recently by phone. "However, campgrounds don't generally pay for themselves." Seemann said that, based on past Grizzly revenues, the campground might bring in between $55,000 to $65,000 a year. He figures the county would need $95,000 to run the entire park. "That includes labor, garbage disposal, electricity, the phone bill, propane for the campground host." The League money would fill the gap between revenues and costs. Under the proposal, the county's resident caretaker at Van Duzen County Park, only six miles west of Grizzly Creek state park on Highway 36, would coordinate operations, and sheriff's deputies would take care of law enforcement. The county would provide money to the state to retain the current Grizzly Creek park maintenance worker full time from mid-May through the end of September and part time for the rest of the year. The state would maintain the water system. And the county would invite back the camp host, a volunteer. County staff and volunteers would run the visitor center. The campground, which is open yearround now, might only be open in the summer, under the proposal. And the county would opt out of the online Reserve America system; instead, sites would be available on a first-come, first-served basis, which Seemann said might cause a drop in out-of-area campers. But the camping fee would only be $25 -- a drop from the state's $35 fee. Seemann said the county hopes the lower rate will encourage more local campers. The day use area would remain open year-round, with a $5 entrance fee. The proposal also suggests setting up a fund-raising account with the Humboldt Area Foundation as part of the strategy to make the park self-sufficient so it can stay open beyond the next 12 months. If the state likes the proposal, the parties will develop an operating agreement. Seemann aims to present that agreement to the Board of Supervisors at its May 8 meeting. Other, richer counties have recently rescued several state parks from closure, including Sonoma County, according to Seemann. Not-so-flush Humboldt is glad it could pick up even one. But parks are important, Seemann said, places where people can have "transformative, life-changing experiences." "So it's kind of a blow to the gut to lose that," he said. If for some reason the deal breaks, Grizzly will be mothballed, said Gardner: Equipment, tools and everything from inside the visitor center hauled to storage; windows boarded up; gates locked. Either way, the campground closes at least temporarily this week. John Porter, co-owner of the Benbow Inn hotel, golf course and RV resort, slowed the rattling golf cart to a halt at the top of a rise, got out, and stood gazing at the scene spread before him. The east branch of the South Fork Eel River snaked under the Highway 101 bridge to meet the south fork, flowing past the Tudor-style inn and the grassy tree-dotted state park's day use area. A stand of forest on the other side concealed the state park campground and its 75 campsites. Porter pointed straight down at two concrete dam ramparts where, for decades, a seasonal dam has been installed in the summer and taken out again in the fall. Nine Benbow brothers and sisters bought the land here in 1922, and in 1926, they built the inn. They built the dam in 1928 for power and a recreational lake, and built the rest of the resort later. The Roosevelts once tootled through here, and Herbert Hoover, and famous heartthrobs and lovelies such as Spencer Tracy, Nelson Eddy and Joan Fontaine were drawn to this remote riverside nook in the redwoods. In the 1950s, the Benbows began shuffling much of the land to the state to protect -- and the Benbow Lake State Recreation Area was born. It grew to 1,200 acres, flanking the 50-acre private inn property. In 1994, Porter continued on page 16 ABOVE grizzly Creek redwoods state park's visitor CeNter is opeN oCCasioNally these days, aNd will stay opeN with liMited hours iF the CouNty MaNages the park. LEFT CaMp site at grizzly Creek redwoods state park. photos by keN MalCoMsoN 14 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 15 continued from page 14 and his wife, Teresa, and another couple bought the inn. They bought the golf course and RV resort in 2004. And the lake was always a draw for their guests. In recent years, however, there's been no lake. The state can't afford the dam's upkeep and, besides, conservationists worry it is hurting salmon. There's talk of removing the structure permanently and restoring the river. Porter shrugged. His guests have gotten used to the lake's absence, he said, and seem happy to frolic in the river or swim in his pool by the golf course. He's also not too concerned that the campground might close indefinitely. Even before they heard that the state had included Benbow on the closure list, he said, he and his partners Photo By heIdI walters were planning to open some of their 112 RV sites to tent camping this summer, charging the same price the state charges at its campgrounds, $35 a night. A consultant had suggested that as a way to make up for the loss in RV and golf tourists, whose numbers have dropped off lately. Porter is miffed, however, about the pending closure of the day use area -- his guests like to amble and picnic there. He could run it, if only the state would let him. "When I heard last year that the state park was going to close, the first thing I did was contact the local superintendent -- Michelle Gardner -- and said, how can we help, what can we do?" Porter recalled. "I said, the day use area would be pretty Photo By keN MalCoMsoN simple for us to run -- it's a matter of mowing the lawn and keeping it maintained. We have a golf course, so we have mowers, staff, PVC pipe. We have the ability to jump in and take that over." The campground would be trickier: It's farther away, and it involves nighttime duties. But he'd consider running that, too, he said he told Gardner. "I said we were willing to take the risk of income versus expenses, and if we made a profit we'd keep it and if we lost money we'd absorb it." But a park can't be run for profit. Under state rules, there are three ways to rescue a state park from closure. Someone can donate the money to allow the state to keep operating it. A nonprofit can put in a proposal to run it. Or a business or concesJohN Porter, Co-owNer of the BeNBow INN, offered to ruN the BeNBow sionaire can respond lake state reCreatIoN area (Below). a to the state's request frIeNdly INNkeePer who waves aNd for proposal (RFP) Chats wIth eMPloyees aNd guests, to run it -- with the Porter grows terse wheN he talks understanding that if aBout dealINg wIth the state. the private operator makes a profit from fees or sales, the money has to be reinvested in the park. Nonprofit and private would-be operators must submit bids to run a park. "The department determines which one is the best for the park," Gardner said. In February, Porter went to a seminar for prospective park operators in Fort Bragg. In March, he said, Gardner told him the state had found money to run the Benbow day use area, but it needed help with the utilities: Would he donate the money? "The email kind of irritated me," Porter said. He wrote back: "Tell you what: You pay for the utilities and I'll run the park. I already have the staff and equipment for it." Nevertheless, Porter asked to see copies of past utility bills. He also contacted Benbow Water Co. to see if it would be willing to donate water -- likely the costliest utility -- to the park and was waiting for a response. But he has not filled out that 132page RFP that Gardner emailed him a couple weeks ago. "To be honest with you, I didn't even open it up," Porter said. "I think the wind has been taken out of my sails. This is not something we need to do. It's something we thought we could do to help out. But they just seem to make it more difficult. I don't blame Michelle Gardner. But to me, this just epitomizes to me the bureaucracy of the state -- no wonder the state's in such a financial position." Gardner sounds equally frustrated. She'd love to just let Porter run the park. "But Sacramento said we can't go ahead without doing bidding." If no deal is struck, with Porter or anyone else, the campground and possibly the day use area, which draw together an average of 35,890 people a year, will close. There is one bright spot: Justin Crellin, general manager of the nonprofit Mateel Community Center in Redway, said his organization has signed an agreement with the state to operate the Benbow campground and day use area over two weekends this summer: during the Mateel's Summer Arts and Music Festival June 2 and 3 and during Reggae on the River July 21 and 22. Gardner continued on page 18 (707) 444-3318 2120 4TH STREET � EUREKA MONDAY-SATURDAY 11:30AM-9:00PM TRADITIONAL AND FUSION JAPANESE FOOD DINE IN OR TAKE OUT Something Unique. New Menu Available Online 6th Street & K Street 707-633-6124 theotherplacearcata.com 16 North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 17 continued from page 16 thE old MIlItary hosPItal (BuIldING at lEFt) at Fort huMBoldt Was Most rECENtly a MusEuM. It's BEEN ClosEd sINCE suFFErING daMaGE IN thE 2010 EarthquakE. Photo By hEIdI WaltErs said the Mateel is paying state employees time-and-a-half to keep the campground open and maintain the day use area for the public on those two weekends: $30,000 for the Summer Arts weekend alone. The Mateel also is handling all reservations for those weekends. ABOVE tWo old-tIME loGGING loCoMotIVEs INhaBIt thIs dIsPlay. LEFT loGGING hIstory dIsPlays at Fort huMBoldt. Photos By hEIdI WaltErs Fort Humboldt State Historic Park This is a strange and empty space. A flat, grassy bluff on the south end of Eureka, overlooking the Bayshore Mall and Humboldt Bay, that yields scant clues about the richness of its past. Traffic sounds drift up from Highway 101, at the base of the bluff, underscoring the loaded silence. Oh, there are some signs: tiny rectangular ones staked into the lawn that you have to crouch down to read, that tell of the time between 1853 and 1865 when this was Fort Humboldt: Here is where the assistant surgeon's wife lived and wrote colorful letters home. Here is where hunter Seth Kinman fed soldiers elk and adventure tales and played wild music for them on his mule-skull fiddle. Here is where soldiers heading into the hinterlands could stock up on supplies -- and where a young Ulysses S. Grant famously malingered for about a year before slumping off to his wife's family farm in 1854. And there's the huge old white hospital, of course, the only building left of the 14 built during the fort's time. It was a museum most recently, but was closed after the 2010 earthquake toppled its chimney through the roof. Nearby stands a replica of the surgeon's quarters, a two-story white house, but it too is closed, its uncovered windows revealing a jumbled mess of haphazard furniture and cleaning supplies. There's so much more of this land's story yet to be told: How soldiers and their wives mingled with traders, children played, and local tribes people -- brought to the fort for their own "protection" during that violent time when gold-rushers and settlers flooded in -- settled uneasily into limbo before being shifted to other places. How, when the fort was abandoned, townspeople rushed in to tear off pieces of the buildings for souvenirs -- Grant, after leading the Union to victory in the Civil War, had become president by then. And how later, in 1935, reporters sat on this bluff and watched as the five-week labor strike down below at the Holmes-Eureka Mill turned bloody one day when police fired into the strikers. Across the grassy expanse from the fort site lie, frankly, bigger tourist draws: the visitor center and an outdoor logging history display. But everything is about to change out here -- and it isn't what you're thinking. First, Fort Humboldt isn't completely closing. Starting July 1, it will be closed on weekends -- gates and bathrooms locked. But it has to stay open on the weekdays because the district office is here, out of which 20 people handle various functions for the 22 parks in the district from Laytonville to the Oregon border. So on weekdays, the gates will be open and the public able to drive in and enjoy the park. School tours and events will still take place. Gardner said the district will have to borrow already stretched-thin staff from other parks to clean the bathrooms, mow the lawn and do other maintenance. Second, and ironically, there is going to be much more to see. Four years ago, the district received $200,000 in bonds to revamp the fort-related exhibits and construct an ADA-approved path around the entire facility. That work is culminating this summer: The path has been built, and soon new interpretive displays will sprout throughout the park, said Susan Doniger, the district's interpretive coordinator. "We're sort of flushing out stories that haven't been told," she said. "It's really exciting. Kids will really identify with the families who were living on the fort. There were laundresses and people building boats and wagons, and farmers hired to supply the fort. I think of Fort Humboldt as the Home Depot of its time. There was a constant play between Eureka and the fort. The fort played this economic role that spurred history. And it had the more difficult role of trying to mediate between tribes and the settlers." The bond money also allowed the district to refurbish the surgeon's house, where staff is busy installing recently acquired period pieces: a bear-hide rocker, a roll-top desk, surgical instruments and a homeopathic kit that contains a tincture of marijuana. Third, and most controversially, the continued on page 21 Play Baywood for BAYWOOD GOLF COUPON 822-3688 One 18-hole round of golf. Act quickly! Must present coupon before play, unlimited coupon use, carts extra, dress code enforced, club etiquette to be followed. Expires 5/31/2012. Baywood reserves the right to refuse service for any reason. 3600 Buttermilk Lane | Call the Clubhouse: 822-3686 Visit Our Web Site: baywoodgcc.com $ 40 MeMBershiP, LiMiteD OFFer! Join Baywood Golf & Country Club before May 31st and pay $0 initiation fee and only $200 per month for a full golfing membership. Social, Pool and Junior Memberships available. 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MOTHER'S DAY SALE Delight your Mom with a gift - 20% off all kitchenware May 7th - 13th 707-822-7049 3384 Janes Rd. Arcata, CA Open 7 days a week! Mon-Sat 9am-6pm | Sundays 9am-5:30pm 20 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com continued from page 18 district plans to eventually dismantle the displays of 19th and 20th century logging equipment spread across an area shaded by enormous pines. The idea has flustered members of the Timber Heritage Association, who want to develop a big timber heritage museum out on Samoa. The association's treasurer, Mike Kellogg, said the state has not been forthcoming with details, which has fueled their fears. He said some members heard rumors that the district planned to send everything up to Del Norte County or down to the state's railroad museum in Sacramento -- including the Falk Locomotive, which according to its donation deed must be displayed locally. "They don't talk to us," Kellogg said. "And we don't know why they're sending the stuff out of the area, instead of donating it to a group that's talking about creating a timber heritage museum right here." Gardner said the district hasn't decided yet what to do with the displays. Some items probably will go to a state park in Del Norte County -- first into storage, where they'll be protected, she said, and later on display in a new museum there. The district will keep other items at Fort Humboldt. The remainder will go back to donors or be found new owners locally if that's what their deeds require. The Falk, added Gardner, won't be sent away. The timber folks also fear loss of the Bear Harbor Gypsy Locomotive, donated to the park by the Partain family, which they heard was going to the Sacramento Railroad Museum. It is, said Gardner -- to be restored, for free. After it's restored, the museum will display it for a while and then return it to Humboldt. "Restore it for free in exchange for a little display time? That's a great deal," Gardner said. In 2009, when then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said he was going to shut down 223 state parks, everybody freaked out. Those parks are our heritage! Repositories of our history, our culture, our natural state. Our last green, wild hope -- or at least our best close-by escape from the doldrums of the office and the hard, urban streets. Skeptical folks said it was a political ploy to scare Californians into really thinking about, and acknowledging, the serious, deepdebt doo doo our state was in and summon the will to do something about it. And the threat slunk away. Now it's back, reduced but still troubling. What does the closure of 70 state parks -- or 60 or 50 or, really, any -- say about us as Californians? What did we do wrong? How did we get so broke, and broken, that we now have to close state parks? "We're a very complicated state," Dan Walters, a political columnist for the Sacramento Bee, said over the phone recently. Walters (no relation to me), like U.S. Grant, in his youth did a term in Eureka -- on occasion taking his young children camping at Benbow Lake -- before heading for more fruitful ground. "We try to do too many different things with our dollars and we end up not doing any of them well." Until we figure out how to wrangle our diverse priorities into a short list to focus on -- and change the tax structure, Walters adds -- the only thing to do is what's already happening: cuts and more cuts. "The underlying thing is, over the years, voters and legislators collectively have committed California to spending more money than the revenue system can produce -- even when the economy is doing well," Walters said. "In round numbers, the general fund has a $100 billion budget, and revenues are a little over $80 billion. So something has to give." And every state sector is giving -- except prisons and pensions, notes Walters -- including, now, our parks. So what happens to these shuttered beauties -- and the people who have taken care of them -- once we lock the gates and drive away? Well, locally, nobody except BY HE IDI WALT seasonal employees will be out of E RS a job, reports Gardner with grim optimism. The ranks have already thinned, and there's room for displaced employees at other parks. "We ran five parks last year with two rangers, open positions we couldn't fill because of the budget," she said. "We imported rangers from outside the area -- including from some desert parks -- to help us out during busy times." The deterioration many state parks already have experienced over 20 years of steadily decreased funding -- resulting in more than $1.3 billion in deferred maintenance statewide -- will continue and possibly grow worse. Perhaps, however, without all of us tromping through, plants and animals will flourish in some parks. Or perhaps not. Just because gates are locked doesn't mean people won't tromp through. "There's liable to be higher vandalism," Gardner said. "There's the fear of crimes such as marijuana grows. Fire danger. I worry about the increased poaching of resources, of trees and tree burls and animals. We have problems like that in the parks now." Gardner said a park employee would check on the closed parks occasionally, but there would be no regular patrol. Doniger, the district interpretive coordinator, said she hopes neighbors of these parks will keep an eye on them. And it appears at least one group has committed to do so out at Grizzly, if the deal with the county falls through: EarthFirst! Humboldt, which used the park often as a base camp for staging its tree-sits and blockades during the Pacific Lumber/Maxxam days. The group plans to organize hikes in the park to keep an eye out for tree and burl poachers, PH O OT and will report problems to law enforcement. It's that instinct to protect, to do something good -- demonstrated by everyone from a private inn owner to a small county to a scraggle of committed forest defenders -- that created our state park system in the first place. Maybe it can save it. Aubuchon was just 11 years old, the '64 flood buried in silt the first spot where her family loved to camp, on private land by the Mattole River. She remembers how, after the flood, her mom and grandmother, the big campers in the family, chose Richardson Grove State Park as their new family summer getaway. And they went there for years, until Aubuchon was grown up, married, and had her own kids -- and her mother was too frail to make the hike from the campsite down to the river anymore. "One time my mother said, `Let's try Grizzly Creek,'" Aubuchon recalled recently. The Aubuchons lived in Fortuna. "I laughed and said, `That's not real camping! That's like going-up-the-street-type camping!'" But they did it, and they got hooked on the convenience. Aubuchon's husband, Ron, could go to work during the week and camp with them on the weekends. They'd stay up till midnight playing cards and laughing. Sometimes, said Aubuchon, they'd roll her mom in her wheelchair right to edge of the river, settle an inner tube around her, and set her to sail, and then they'd catch her downstream. And now Aubuchon's children have begun bringing their kids there for those glorious two weeks in the summer. They swim, talk to people from Japan and Europe and Wisconsin, eat Dutch oven pizzas and brown-bears-in-an-apple-orchard (an applesauce-gingerbread concoction) sleep in a tent, listen to the river. "That's what you do in the summer," said Theresa Aubuchon. When Theresa CARPET CLEANING Upholstery Cleaning Tile & Grout Cleaning Quality Workmanship Dependable People Fair Prices Landscaping and Tree Service Hauling Irrigation Systems Gutters Power Washing Painting Dana Lerski Ask us about Green Guard! 442-3229 267-0627 firstname.lastname@example.org northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 21 21 Sum of the Parts JACK SEWELL WORKS ON HIS SCULPTURE Following the progress of Jack Sewell's C Street sculpture project By Jason Marak SPARKS FLY � JACK SEWELL AT WORK. PHOTO BY JASON MARAK ONE OF JACK SEWELL'S STAINLESS STEEL BIRDS PHOTO BY JASON MARAK CONCEPT DRAWING FOR WATER SCULPTURE BY JACK SEWELL 22 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com PHOTO BY JASON MARAK W hen most people pull off southbound Highway 101 into the parking lot shared by Mr. Fish and a pawn shop, they're probably looking to bring home a few pounds of fresh crab or make a few bucks off that old guitar that's been taking up closet space -- but not local artist and gallery owner Jack Sewell. He's there for a very different purpose. He parks his truck on the far north side of the lot, in front of three large, bay doors that used to be Eureka Truck Terminal. The warehouse houses Sewell's most ambitious sculpture project to date -- a work in progress that, if all goes as planned, will be ready for installation at the foot of C street by Arts Alive! on Saturday. Sewell's sculpture project began last May as a proposal in response to the Eureka Art and Culture Commission's call for artist submissions describing ideas for a large, permanent, waterfeature sculpture. Creation of a piece based on the winning design would be funded with redevelopment money and installed at the foot of C Street in the new Market Square area near the recently redeveloped Fishermen's Terminal. Sewell's proposal was selected from among many, and he began building his sculpture last December. Now, 700 pounds of stainless steel and $30,000 later, Sewell is on the home stretch. I went to see the work in progress at Sewell's Broadway warehouse workspace in early March. Walking into the dimly lit warehouse from the daylight was a bit disorienting. Sounds of ignition and bursts of torchlight provided moments of intense, perception altering illumination. When my eyes adjusted, I was confronted with a central loop of stainless steel standing over 20 feet high, roughly outlining the shape of a sail. The movement of the line and its scale are eye-catching, and the open space invites the viewer into the piece titled Following Current Events. On the day that I visited with Sewell, a large propeller was lying, tilted, next to an old, gray pickup truck, and larger-than-life aluminum birds were propped near a beat-up, blue lift: elements of the piece that were finished but not yet incorporated into the whole. But Sewell's clear, enthusiastic description of how the parts would come together brought his vision to life. The piece will be installed in a pond (already completed at the C Street location) with jets providing moving water currents. The currents will rotate a large-bladed propeller that will be mounted at the base of the piece. The rotation of this prop will, in turn, slowly rotate the entire 23-foot sculpture. When it's windy (more often than not at the foot of C) the "sail" will catch the wind and either fight or aid the rotational direction provided by the current. The final kinetic element of the piece comes in the form of three large, aluminum birds that will be suspended at three different points around the loop between 11 and 15 feet high. The birds will be mounted on swivels, allowing them to move with the wind independently from the rest of the piece. In short, a beautifully envisioned and designed form will bring a lot of steel and a lot of movement to the foot of C Street. Eureka has long been trying to become an arts destination and in recent years it seems to be getting closer to that goal. The city is home to many galleries (Sewell's among them), museums and art spaces. Arts Alive! has become an important monthly event for the local arts and business communities. "The more public art the better!" declared Swell. For Sewell, the importance of public art seems to go beyond simply signifying a community's interest in the arts. "Every chance you get to kind of take someone out of their cell phone mode and over into looking at something and taking their minds off of things for just a few moments, well then public art has been successful to that degree," Sewell said. Reflecting on the project's completion, Sewell has modest hopes. "Maybe there'll be a few people that'll sit and watch this spin around for a while; that'd be good for me," he said, smiling. Following Current Events will certainly offer visitors to the Market Square/Fisherman's Terminal area something different to enjoy and contemplate. The content of the sculpture and the location are significant. They bring together two key elements that are largely responsible for making Eureka such a unique place to live and visit: a burgeoning art scene and the long established fishing tradition that has done so much to build and shape our community. Sewell's sculpture may, like a shock of perception-altering torchlight, allow us for a few moments to see ourselves, and the place we are standing, just a little bit differently. northcoastjournal.com Stock Schlueter First Saturday Night Arts Alive! Saturday, May 5, 6-9 p.m. Presented by the Humboldt Arts Council and Eureka Main Street. Opening receptions for artists, exhibits and/or performances are held the first Saturday of each month. Phone (707) 442-9054 or go to www.eurekamainstreet.org for more information or to have an exhibit/ performance included. Art of Morris Graves; Mel Schuler Sculpture Garden; Youth Gallery: Eureka High School Senior Art Showcase; Second Saturday Family Arts Day Gallery Children's art. 3. REDWOOD REALM ARCHITECTURAL ANTIQUES 618 F St. 3a. EUREKA THEATER 618 F St. Roberta Preble. 3b. ANNEX 39 608 F St. 3c. PAUL'S LIVE FROM NEW YORK PIZZA 604 F St. 4. REDWOOD ART ASSOCIATION 603 F St. Membership Spring Exhibition. 5. DALIANES 522 F St. Robert Lopez, Travels with Dalianes, acrylic paintings and pastels depicting trips booked through Dalianes; Dennis and Leialoha Robinson, Hawaiian music, performing. 6. F STREET FOTO GALLERY at Swanlund's Camera 527 F St. Modernism, Photography After 1930, featuring 12 artists including Ansel Adams. 7. THE LOCAL 517 F St. Dave Van Patten and Branden Barlow, paintings. continued on next page May Featured Artist CAPTION: "CAMO CHRONICLE: VIETNAM � USA" Representing Premier Artists from the North Coast 423 F Street, Old Town Eureka PIANTE GALLERY PRESENTS A JOINT SHOW FOR THE MONTH OF MAY WITH "ARTIFACTS AND INCIDENTS," PHOTOGRAPHY BY NICOLE JEAN HILL AND "THE CAMO CHRONICLES," PAINTINGS BY VIETNAMESE ARTIST LIEN TRUONG, A 1999 HSU GRADUATE WHO WENT ON TO MILLS COLLEGE. TRUONG EXPLAINS, "THE CAMO CHRONICLES ARE BASED ON BOMB CRATERS THAT EXIST AS THE RESULT OF A HISTORICAL OR CONTEMPORARY WAR. WITHIN THESE DEPRESSIONS OF DESTRUCTION, THE CRUDE CAVITIES TRAP MOISTURE AND SEEDS, BECOMING AN ORIGIN FOR NEW LIFE. I SCULPT OUT THE CAVERNS WITH PAINT AND EMPHASIZE THE WATER AND BOTANICAL BODIES, FUSING A WESTERN PAINTING STYLE WITH AN EASTERN AESTHETIC OF FLAT, NEGATIVE SPACE. THE LAND MASSES, WATER AND MAMMALS PLAY OUT ALLEGORICAL NARRATIVES TO REAL CONFLICTS." 269-0617 www.sewellgallery.com Tues-Sat 10-6PM � Sunday 12-5PM 1. EUREKA INN 518 Seventh St. Peggy Jenkinson, Silent Poetry, multi media and verre eglomis� paintings. 2. HUMBOLDT ARTS COUNCIL at the Morris Graves Museum of Art 636 F St. Humboldt Artist Gallery: Artist Cooperative; Performance Rotunda: Wallace and Phines performing; William Thonson Gallery: The Humboldt School of Landscape Painting, Julia Bednar, John Crater, Judy Evenson, Eric Fidjeland, Ralphie Hendrix, Ken Jarvela, Jim McVicker, Terry Oats, Kathy O'Leary, John Palmer, Steve Porter, Leslie Reid, Alan Sanborn, Stock Schlueter, Randy Spicer, Dolores Terry, Alicia Treadway, George Van Hook and Lisa Marie Waters; Homer Balabanis Gallery: Celebration of the Arts 2012 Auction; Anderson Gallery: Redwood Art Association 54th Annual Spring Juried Exhibition; Knight Gallery: Shawn Gould, Humboldt Wild, paintings; Atrium Gallery: Morris Graves, works from HAC Permanent Collection and CD-ROM The Life & New Thai NEW LO C AT I ON in Old Tow n � Frames � Custom Framing � Framed Art M-F 10-6pm, Sat 10-5pm Featuring Lauris Phillips Sumi Paintings in May 616 Second St., Old Town Eureka 707.443.7017 email@example.com 307 2nd Street Eureka 269-0555 northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 23 northcoastjournal.com ALONG WITH THE ANNUAL JURIED MEMBERS EXHIBITION, THE REDWOOD ART ASSOCIATION GALLERY HAS A MAY SHOW WITH BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVE SCHUMAKER, STILSON SNOW AND HAL WORK (WHOSE PHOTO OF CRAB POTS IS SHOWN HERE). THE WORK IS SLIGHTLY RETRO IN THAT IT WAS SHOT WITH OLD SCHOOL (NON-DIGITAL) CAMERAS, BUT MORE EXTRAORDINARY IS THE FILM PROCESSING, WHICH WAS NOT DONE WITH THE USUAL CHEMICALS, RATHER WITH "CAFFENOL," A CONCOCTION COMPRISED OF COFFEE AND OTHER HOUSEHOLD PRODUCTS. NOT LONG AGO WORK STUMBLED UPON A STORY ABOUT STUDENTS AT ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY WHO CAME WITH THE IDEA OF USING COFFEE AS A DEVELOPER. AFTER SOME EXPERIMENTATION, A RECIPE INCLUDING INSTANT COFFEE, VITAMIN C (ASCORBIC ACID), WASHING SODA AND SALT WAS ESTABLISHED. "I HAD TO TRY IT," SAID WORK, WHO TEAMED WITH HIS PHOTOGRAPHER FRIENDS AND BOUGHT SOME NEAR-EXPIRED B&W FILM AND THE STUFF TO DEVELOP IT. THEY'LL BE SERVING COFFEE AND SNACKS (COURTESY OF THE LOCAL STARBUCKS) AT THEIR MAY ARTS ALIVE! OPENING. continued from previous page 8. SACRED PALACE BOUTIQUE/BIKRAM YOGA 516 Fifth St. Jesse G. Cala, wood and bronze sculpture. 9. SEWELL GALLERY FINE ART 423 F St. Stock Schlueter, Plein Air and Plain Talk, paintings; Doug Feldon and Friends, performing. 9a. NORTH COAST DANCE 426 F St. So That Any Child Who Wants to Dance Can scholarship fundraiser. 10. SIDEWALK GALLERY at Ellis Art and Engineering 401 Fifth St. Mischa Lollar and Brent Forsyth. 11. WELLS FARGO ADVISORS 318 Fifth St. Jaffa Dugan, Kitch Eitzen, Maija Kalb, Marla West, Ann Anderson and Jane Cinnamond, floral, land and riverscape watercolors. 11a. Z & J ASIAN SUBS 310 Fifth St. 12. REPUBLICAN HEADQUARTERS 3 11 Fifth St. Bernice Houston, paintings and weavings. 13. AMIGAS BURRITOS 317 Fifth St. Katherine Ziemer, Antique Wooden Boats, photography; Brandon Clark, photography. 14. PRIMATE TATU 139 Fifth St. Dre Meza, Casey Z and Juniper new works. 15. INK ANNEX 47 W. Third St. North Coast Open Studios artists and reception. Appetizers, no host wine bar and live music. 16. CHERI BLACKERBY GALLERY and THE STUDIO 272 C St. Dawn Wentworth, Experiemental � Through the Eyes of an Artist. 17. HALL GALLERY 208 C St. Valaria Alvarado. 17a. THE WORKS 210 C St. Phillip King, artwork. 17b. ACCIDENT GALLERY 210 C St. 18. SAILORS' GRAVE TATTOO 138 Second St. Tattoo related art. 18a. LIVELLA STUDIO 120 Second St. Recording Studios. Mod Brothers, performing. 18b. MANTOVA'S TWO STREET MUSIC 124 Second St. Christian Abercrombie and Friends and Trip Wire, performing. 18c. THE BLACK FAUN GALLERY 120 Second St. Paul Fukunaga, paper and reed sculpture; Amanda Wilson, mixed media paintings. 19. STEVE AND DAVE'S First and C Sts. Marni Schneider, photography; Dr. Squid, performing. 19a. REDWOOD CURTAIN 220 First St. North Coast Journal Field Notes columnist Barry Evans, Travel the World, photography; For Better begins at 8 p.m. Tickets $15. 19b. FOOT OF C STREET Meet Jack Sewell between 6 and 7 p.m. and talk with him about his latest sculpture gracing C Street Market Square. 20. CHAPALA CAFE 201 Second St. Traditional Southwest artists' prints. 20a. ACCENT STYLING GALLERY 219 Second St. Wynsome Winds, performing. 20b. GOOD RELATIONS 223 Second St. Laura Rowe, A Kind Of Beauty, drawings. 21. HUMBOLDT HERBALS 300 Second St. Renee Thompson, acrylic and oil paintings; Todd Krider, acoustic guitar music, performing. 21a. NORTH COAST KNITTERY 320 Second St. 22. RUSTIC WEST TRADING CO. 339 Second St. Carol Nelson, vintage jewelry; Adam Dias, woodworking; Fern Valley Goats, goats milk soap; Loreta Flemingate, bright amber and feather jewelry. 23. HUMBOLDT GLASS BLOWERS 214 E St. Monica Haff, paintings; Pinball tournament. 23a. CLARKE HISTORICAL MUSEUM Third and E St. Vintage Clothing Exhibit, May Pearsall 1910-1930. 24. BELLA BASKETS 311 E St. Barbara J. Pulliam, watercolors, ink and graphite; Gael Dougherty, watercolor, colored pencil and pastel. 25. STUDIO 424 424 Third St. James Reid and Mark McKenna, photography. 25a. ORIGINS DESIGN LAB 426 Third St. Mari Shroeder, quilts made from upcycled clothing. 25b. SHIPWRECK 430 Third St. Jeeze Louise, 19b EUREKA MAY 2012 19 19a Humbo 33 ldt Bay 1st St 32a 34 49a 50 51 48 48a 52 54 54a 55 55a 53 to 59 20 20a 20b 18c 18b 18a 18 17b 17a 17 16 21 Gabriel to 15 15 49 29 30 31 28a 35 35a 36 36a 37 38 47 46 Imperial Square 23 28 39 45a 27 26 26a 40 45 44a Clark 40a 44 23a Plaza 40b 43a 3rd St 25 25a 25b 2nd St 21a 22 43 42 56 57 to 58 24 41 19b 4th St EUREKA MAY 2012 1st St Humbo 33 ldt Bay DOWNTOWN 9a 14 13 12 11a 11 10 8 19 9 19a 5th St OLD TOWN Romano Gabriel 32a 32 34 49a 50 51 48 48a 52 54 54a 55 55a 53 Detail Gazebo 207 20a 20b 18c 18b 18a 6th St to 15 15 0 500 ft 7th St � NORTH COAST JOURNAL/Miles Eggelston Graves Museum 2 18 17b 17a 3c 17 3b 3a 16 3 Morris 5 6 21 2nd St 21a 4 3rd St D St 1 49 29 30 31 28a 35 35a 36 36a 37 38 47 46 Imperial Square 23 28 39 45a 27 26 26a 40 45 44a Clark 40a 44 23a Plaza 40b 43a 25 25a 25b 22 43 42 56 G St H St C St E St F St 24 41 4th St 24 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com 9a 9 I St THE INK ANNEX'S BRENDA TUXFORD GALLERY (47B WEST 3RD ST.) HAS A GROUP SHOW MEET-AND-GREET FOR MAY ARTS ALIVE! WITH WORK BY MANY OF THE 60-PLUS NORTH COAST OPEN STUDIOS ARTISTS PREVIEWING THE UPCOMING COUNTYWIDE ARTS TOUR SET FOR JUNE 3-4 AND JUNE 9-10. AMONG THE PARTICIPANTS: SUSAN COOPER AND JO PRITCHETT, WHOSE PAINTINGS ARE SHOWN HERE, to 59 AND CONCRETE ARTIST JOHN KING, WOOD ARTIST ZACHARY SHEA AND WATERCOLORIST/MONOTYPIST PATRICIA SENNOTT, WHO HAVE CONTRIBUTED PIECES FOR A BENEFIT DRAWING TO HELP SUPPORT PUBLICATION OF THE GUIDEBOOK FOR NORTH COAST OPEN STUDIOS 2012. THE GUIDEBOOK WILL BE AVAILABLE AT THE ARTS ALIVE! RECEPTION 57 AS WELL AS IN THE MAY 30 ISSUE OF THE NORTH COAST JOURNAL AND to 58 IN "ARTS-FRIENDLY VENUES THROUGHOUT HUMBOLDT COUNTY." UNTITLED LANDSCAPE BY SUSAN COOPER. 32 See Old Town Detail Map Gazebo Romano G St H St D St C St E St F St I St northcoastjournal.com Fresh Good Food Dine-In or Take-Out Mon to Sat 11 am - 4 pm Closed Sundays Open for Arts Alive! ~Mediterranean & Creole Specialities~ ~Local Wine & Beer~ ~Offering dining choices for ALL appetites~ On E St. between 2nd and 3rd Eureka � 443-4663 "MITCH'S CHRISTMAS TREE" PAINTING BY NED SIMMONS Fresh Alaskan Halibut � Fresh Crab Dishes Black Angus Beef � Extensive Salad Bar Famous Seafood Chowder � Historic Bar feather headbands and new jewelry. 26. CAF� NOONER 409 Opera Alley. Jesse Weidel, Erin Whitman, Chris Hungerford, Kris Swan, Mari Persson, Dave Orchard, Doug Lunt, Mural 2.0, mixed media integrated into the existing murals; The Living Rooms, acoustic guitar performing. 26a. THE SPEAKEASY BAR 411 Opera Alley. 27. HUMBOLDT BAYKEEPER 211 E St. Jan Hollander, North Coast landscape oil paintings; Kenny Ray and the Mighty Rovers, performing. 28. RAMONE'S 209 E St. Rosalie Thomson, mixed media; Samuel Whitlach, performing. 28a. BOOKLEGGER 402 Second St. 29. TRUCHAS GALLERY/LOS BAGELS 403 Second St. Linnea Tobias, acrylic and watercolor paintings. 30. BELLE STARR 405 Second St. Paula Anderson, watercolors. 31. NORTH SOLES 417 Second St. Paula Anderson, watercolors. 32. SISTERFRIENDS JEANS 108 F St. 32a. HSU FIRST STREET GALLERY 422 First St. Erin Whitman, Projections: Paintings and Mixed Media. Michael Guerriero, Celebrating the Eel River Salmon Run, works on paper, canvas and mixed-media. 33. BAYFRONT RESTAURANT F St. Plaza Richard Duning, paintings. 34. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS 123 F St. Abbie Perrott, paintings. 35. EUREKA FABRICS 414 Second St. Libby Palmquist, Repurposed Art Garments, Skirts, Tops, Belts and more, created from repurposed materials. 35a. THE LITTLE SHOP OF HERS 416 Second St. Starla Ball, paintings. 36. YARN 418 Second St. Brooklyn Marvin, illustrations. 36a. EUREKA BOOKS 426 Second St. 37. SHORELINES GALLERY 434 Second St. Amber Jones, Copper Turtles. continued on next page Trinidad Art Night Friday, May 4, 6-9 p.m. Dedicated to the memory of the late Ned Simmons (1939-2011), painter, poet, historian and owner of Trinidad Art Gallery. Online at trinidadartnights.com or call 707-502-5737. 316 E ST. � OLD TOWN, EUREKA � 443-7187 DINNER MON-SAT 5-9 �LUNCH TUE-FRI 11-2 TRINIDAD WEST Trinidad Art Gallery. 490 Trinity St. Celebrate Ned Simmons! Music by Pilot Rock Ramblers from 6-7 p.m. followed by a reading of Ned's poetry Beachcomber. 363 Trinity St. Art and live music Moonstone Crossing. 529 Trinity St. Alan Sanborn Critique Group. Trinidad Massage. 529 Trinity St. Agate jewelry by Christen Condry Trinidad Eatery. Parker and Trinity sts. TBA Trinidad Town Hall. 409 Trinity St. Music and artworks by Kahish Kverda. Tennis Court. Costumed tennis with town favorite, David Trinidad B&B. 560 Edwards St. Paintings by Sam Lundeen TRINIDAD EAST Saunders Park. start of Patrick's Point Dr. Open acoustic stage at the Gazebo Salty's. 332 Main St. Photography and music by JD Jeffries 6-7 p.m. Forbes & Associates. 361 Main St. Jewelry by Midori Designs Trinidad Museum. 400 Main St. Poetry by Stephanie Silva, wine and cheese WindanSea. 410 Main St. "Fish Eye" jewelry by Greta Daniels, music by JD Jeffries from 7-8 p.m. Trinidad Trading Company. 460 Main St. Spirit work and chakra alignment by Jessika Lazor 2DoorsDownWineBar.com The Sea Grill northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 25 northcoastjournal.com continued from previous page 38. MANY HANDS GALLERY 438 Second St. Lunel Haysmer, assemblage art, Phil Haysmer, redwood art. 39. TALISMAN BEADS 214 F St. 40. SASAFRASS 226 F St. 40a. ALIROSE 229 F St. Justine Levy, jewelry. 40b. THE WINE SPOT 234 F St. 41. OLD TOWN JEWELERS 311 F St. Patricia Sennott, Botanical Monotypes. 42. COCO & CUVEE 531 Third St. Steven Schmidt. 43. DANNILYNN'S SHOE BOUTIQUE 527 Third St. Frank Shelley and Kari Shoberg, Lost in the Redwoods Photography. 43a. DISCOVERY MUSEUM Corner of F and Third St. Kids Alive Program Drop off 5:30-8:00; call for reservations 443-9694. 44. AMERICAN INDIAN ART GALLERY 241 F St. Ellen Poitras, Lakota-Chippewa, fiber artist. 44a. OLD TOWN ART GALLERY 233 F St. Carol Lauer, Jean Hawkins, Patty Holbrook, paintings. 45. BON BONIERE 215 F St. Eureka High School, mixed media; Dale Winget, guitar/vocalist, performing. 45a. CODY GALLERY 213 F St. 46. OLD TOWN COFFEE and CHOCOLATES 211 F St. Gabriella Wotherspoon, vibrante watercolor and acrylic paintings; Emily Reinhart, Open Mic Night, charcoals; Trifecta, multistyle music, performing. 47. OLD TOWN ANTIQUE LIGHTING Corner of 2nd and F Sts. Margriet Seinen, paintings on silk; George Mooney, classical and folk tunes. 48. HOLLYGOLIGHTLY 514 Second St. Floral paintings. 48a. OBERON GRILL 516 Second St. Historic photographs of Old Eureka from Historical Society. 49. LINEN CLOSET 127 F St. Baroni Jewelry, charms, necklaces. 49a. TESORI 525 Second St. Michael Rowland, acrylics; Becky Saucedo, crochet; Alleta Hele, woodwork. 50. HIMALYAN RUG TRADER 529 Second St. 51. LUCIDITY 531 Second St. Tony Machado, paintings; Alison Vernon, a painter out of New Hampshire; live jazz. 52. BUHNE ART STUDIOS 207 G St. Studio 106: Yuma Lynch, mixed media and landscape paintings; Studio 109: Fran Kuta; Studio 120: David Steinhardt, Ceiling Murals, acrylics on canvas; Studio 206: Rob Hampson; Studio 333: Robert Busch, oil paintings; Geometrix, clothing line. 53. PARASOL ARTS 211 G St. 54. ART CENTER 616 Second St. Lauris Phillips, brush paintings/Sumi paintings. 54a. PIANTE 620 Second St. Lien Truong and Nicole Jean Hill. 55. DELIGHTFUL EYE PHOTOGRAPHY 622 Second St. Scott and Jennifer Wilson, landscape, portraits and weddings photography. 55a. SMUG'S PIZZA 626 Second St. Brandon Garland, pen and ink. 56. AVALON Third & G Sts. 57. STUDIO S 717 Third St. Redwood Empire Quilters Show. 58. BIGFOOT COMPUTERS AND PHOTOGRAPHY TOO... 905 Third St. Education Cannabis Show, Cannabis Collage memorabilia, propaganda posters. 59. ADORNI CENTER 1011Waterfront Dr. Donna Sellers, acrylic paintings; Jaci Forthun, drawings; Jessica Albee, acrylic paintings. THE HUMBOLDT ARTS COUNCIL IN THE MORRIS GRA VES MUSEUM OF ART The Humboldt School of Landscape Painting May 3 through June 24 A combination of the varied and dramatic local landscape, a vibrant art scene centered around humboldt state university, and the effects of a backs-to-the-land ethic have coalesced into a regional school of painting. The humboldt school of landscape painting consists of nineteen artists: julia bednar, john crater, judy evenson, eric fidjeland, ralphie hendrix, ken jarvela, jim mcvicker, terry oats, kathy o'leary, john palmer, steve porter, leslie reid, alan sanborn, stock schlueter, randy spicer, dolores terry, alicia treadway, george van hook, and lisa marie waters. Garberville Arts Alive Friday, May 4, 5:30 p.m. Garberville downtown. Local businesses featuring talented local artists. 923-4789. Presbyterian Church. Ettersburg School hosting a benefit Spaghetti Feed from 5-8 p.m. Umpqua Bank. Photos by Erin Freeman. Town and Country Video. Items crafted by Agnes J. Johnson School students. Lil' Sprouts Boutique. Stepping Stone's preschool art. Calico's. Masks by Burt Neiman's 4th/5th grade class. North Valley Bank. Sue Shelton's classroom art. Redwood Drive Center. Music by Twango Macallen; SFHS Senior projects. Randy Cantua Insurance. Nancy Lewis' 2nd grader art. Little Redwood's preschool. Cuttings. Chamber Office. Stu Moskowitz, paintings. Smokin' Caterpillar Glass and Gifts. Glass art Jacob Garber Square. School's Foundation bake sale; Marianne Odisio, feather jewelry; Mable Chang, jewelry. Tranquility Lane Flowers. Jennifer McCarthy, wearable art. Flavors. Brian Allison, photographs. Garden of Beadin'. Jewelry art. Bootleg. Claire Piccinelli's 1st graders' art. Paradise Grill. Maria's art. Garberville Veteran's Hall. Feet First, casual dance lessons. W W W. H U M B O L D TA RTS . O RG 636 F STREET � EUREKA � 707-442-0278 � NOON-5PM WED-SUN S E E O U R P RO G R A M S O N L I N E 26 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com Hold the Mayo Music for a quasi-Mexican holiday, plus jazz, folky Cars, and The Shondes By Bob Doran firstname.lastname@example.org S aturday is the 5th of May, aka Cinco de Mayo, another of those quasi-holidays like St. Patrick's Day pushed by marketing departments that wants to sell more beer, or in this case, beer, margaritas and tequila shots. Ask a reveler on bar row what it's about and, unless you chance upon a history major, they'll probably tell you it's like the Fourth of July -- Mexican independence day or something like that. It isn't. The few who celebrate it south of the border call it El Dia de la Batalla de Puebla (The Day of the Battle of Puebla), marking the anniversary of a dramatic victory 150 years ago when Mexican troops beat back a much larger French force. Unfortunately, the French ultimately won the war and Emperor Maximilian ruled Mexico, at least until our Civil War ended and we sent some of our boys down to kick some French butt. Or something like that. But enough history. Let's party. The hippest, most ironic take on the faux holiday has to be �El Raco Taco!, a show at the Arcata Theatre Lounge on 5/5 with five bands for just five bucks. It's a kick-ass cross-section of local rawkousness including my favorite local alt. somethings, Strix Vega, who have been stretching out and seriously shredding of late. Splinter Cell is a trio of veteran rockers with a sense of humor, whose collective r�sum� ties them to just about every band in town. Indianola is a new band fronted by guitarist Ben Allen with CJ Stewart on bass and Graham Miller on drums promising "heavy riffs and melodic guitar that will surely make you nod yo head," or maybe bang it. Then you have two branches off the family tree of Que La Chinga, a classic local twisted-stringbandmeets-rock country/punk outfit that split up five years ago. Bret went on to a career as a Neil Diamond clone, then founded the dark, fearsome garage psyche outfit Drifter Killer. Kiel and some of the other Chingas formed Side Iron and went on singing slightly countryish rock songs about whiskey, women, etc. Haven't heard much of them lately, since they apparently went underground to woodshed for this triumphant return. Put all those bands together and you have a perfect backdrop �El raCo taCo! photo by tErrENCE MCNally - arCataphoto.CoM for your tequila shot barrage, or, god-forbid, downing a giant margarita with a bottle of Corona upended in it. Incidentally, if you're thinking the Good, Band and Ugly trio of rockin' banditos above is not quite p.c., remember that the photographer, Mr. T McNally, is half-Mexican. For a slightly more authentic Latin American experience there's "Salsa and Samba," a familyfriendly benefit for the Morris Elementary Language Immersion School Saturday evening at Azalea Hall in McKinleyville. They've strayed from the Mexican theme with Brazilian dance/ drum troupe Samba na Chuva and the superhigh-energy AfroCuban dance band Ponche! Just `Cause presents "Funky Full Moon II: A Cinco de Mayo Dance Party" Saturday at the Ocean Grove. The Latin/soul/funk/disco/ etc. vinyl extravaganza features DJ Knutz (of Just `Cause) along with the usual Soul Night suspects: Matt `n' Adam, King Maxwell, Jaymorg, and DJ Mantease, who scored a mess of new (old) cumbia records for the occasion. The Jambalaya has the Bay Area band LoCura with its mix of flamenco, reggae, cumbia, ska and Cuban son, something the band calls "Califas Flamenkito." Mucho caliente! (No, I don't habla.) The HSU Guitar Ensemble has a semi-Latin program planned for its concert at Fulkerson Recital Hall that night with tunes for the Spanish guitar ranging from classic sonatas and flamenco to boleros and gypsy jazz. AkaBoom Sound and DJ Gabe Pressure spin reggae, rock steady, dancehall and presumably a bit of reggaeton for a "Cinco de Mayo Reggae Party" at the Arcata Veterans Memorial Building. It's not like they want to honor the other side in the battle of Cinco de Mayo, but Northcoast Preparatory and Performing Arts Academy has its annual "Elegant French Dinner and Dance" that night at the Arcata Community Center with Chef Marceau Verdiere back from Europe for the occasion and roots/rockin' The Delta Nationals once again providing music for dancers. (Request "La Bamba.") The folks at Blue Ox Millworks are celebrating a different holiday that Saturday with their 11th Annual May Day Living History and Artisan Fair, an all-day thing with skill demonstrations by old time blacksmiths, wood workers, ceramics artists, etc. and old time music by Compost Mountain Boys, Pilot Rock Ramblers, The Tumbleweeds, Striped Pig Stringband, Mirth First and JD Jefferies among others. Trinidadian folk/rock singer/songwriter Jeffries is rolling out a new CD, Mixed Classics, with a series of shows. For Friday's Trinidad Art Night he's at Trinidad Trading Company and Salty's. Tuesday's big release party at Mad River Brewing also has harpist Howdy Emerson and Sage, an all-ladies barbershop quartet (or "beauty shop quartet," as JD puts it). The Compost Mountain Boys are doing double duty that Cinco Saturday, also playing at the annual Campus Center for Appropriate Technology "May Day Spring Compost Festival" at HSU. Our Weight in Gold and No Good Redwood Ramblers join the fun. (The Compost Mountain Boys also play Thursday night at Shamus T Bones.) Humboldt Brews has a Cinco de Mayo party with Orjazzmic Sextet. Latin jazz? Maybe a little. It's free, so, whatever. There's nothing remotely Latin about The B-Stars, a S.F.-based hillbilly/honky tonk, retro-boogie band playing Saturday night at the Riverwood Inn. (Loreen has been known to serve some fine Mexican food, however.) A reminder: Tommy Castro and The Painkillers play at the Riverwood Monday, but unless you bought advance tickets, forget it. As predicted, it's sold out. It's jazz time down SoHum way Friday night as Persimmons Gallery returns after a winter hiatus. Owner (and ace jazz drummer) Michael Curran leads The Persimmons Quartet with Francis Vanek on sax, Jim Wilde on guitar and Damian Roomets on bass, expanding to a quintet with special guest vocalist Joannie Rose. Meanwhile at Fulkerson Recital Hall, HSU's AM Jazz Band, directed by Sky Miller, mixes jazz classics by Miles, Dizzy and Billy Strayhorn with less familiar tunes by Sid Wyche, Bobby Timmons and Ray Wetzel. Wednesday, the Arcata Playhouse adds tables and cocktails to become a "jazz lounge" with The Randles/LaBolle/Wu Trio (Tim/Shao Way/Mike) playing cool jazz and original tunes. Tribute of the week honors go to Brooklynborn folkie Kris Delmhorst, whose latest album, Cars, explores the music of the newwave band The Cars. The history is explained at krisdelmhorst.com: "Summer of 1984, 13-yearold Brooklyn girl takes babysitting money uptown to Tower Records, finds Heartbeat City on cassette. Drawn in by slightly racy cover art, unnerved but fascinated by lead singer's punchy warble, she finds herself defenseless against intricate layers of pop hooks. Bounces album from Walkman to boom-box and back until tape is destroyed while dubbing for best friend. More babysitting follows." Fast-forward to last year when Delmhorst revisited the Cars catalog with guitars, fiddles etc. She'll play some of those songs as well as some of her own songs (with help from Hayward Williams) on Thursday at the Arcata Playhouse. That same Thursday at Redwood Yogurt, local folkies John Ludington, Chris Parreira and Lyndsey Battle sing a few songs, probably not any by The Cars. Sunday night at the Alibi, it's the return of The Shondes, a band out of Brooklyn playing what Entertainment Weekly calls, "giddy garage melodics with [a] Sleater-Kinney twist." I'm guessing The Shondes, whose name is Yiddish for "disgraced," might not agree. (Must every grrrl group be compared with SleaterKinney?) Last time the band was here, drummer Temim Fruchter offered this less-giddy description: "We're a queer/trans rock quartet mixing classical, feminist punk and Jewish music with radical politics to make you dance and break your heart!" DJ Anya opens on what is usually Hella Gay Dance Party night. Dance. And break your heart. l northcoastjournal.com � North Coast JourNal � thursday, May 3, 2012 27 37F OF MSRP % entertainment in bold includes paid listings see The Hum pg. 27 clubs � concerts � caf�s bands � djs � karaoke � drink & food specials � pool tournaments � and more venue THE ALIBI: ARCATA 822-3731 744 9th St. Arc. thealibi.com ARCATA COMMUNITY CENTER ARCATA PLAYHOUSE 1251 9th St. ARCATA THEATRE LOUNGE 1036 G St. Info line: 822-1220 ARCATA VETERAN'S HALL Arcata AZALEA HALL McKinleyville BAR-FLY PUB 443-3770 91 Commercial, Eureka barflypub.com BEAR RIVER CASINO 733-9644 11 Bear Paws Way, Loleta Happy Hour everyday 4-6pm Karaoke w/ Chris Clay 8pm Open Mic 7pm HSU Center for Evolutionary Anthropology fundraiser 6:30pm $25 Blues Jam w/ Anna Banana 6pm Good Company (Celtic) 8pm The Tumbleweeds (cowboy) 6-8pm BossLevelz w/Masta Shredda & Itchie Fingaz no cover 9pm Kindred Spirits (bluegrass) 9pm The Trouble, The Bandage 8pm Bradley Dean (folk rock) 7pm Death Metal Thursday (DMT): 4:30-10 pm AND Happy Hour until Close! Beer Pong Tournament 9pm AM Jazz Band 8pm $7/$3 Synrgy, Antioquia 9pm $5 Spring Wine Appreciation Course: Thursdays in May 6pm $25 per class myspace.com/ littleredlioneurekacalif www.madriverbrewing.com Distracting the cook will only prolong the hunger www.humboldtbrews.com KRFH's Lixxapalooza 6pm KBR In Human Creation: In Jest 9pm Matthew Cook 6-9pm no cover We got beer. State of Play (rock) 6pm Happy Hour All Day! Cinco De Mayo Party w/Orjazzmic Sextet 8pm free HSU Guitar Ensemble 8pm $7/$3 LoCura (alt. Latin) 9pm $18/$14 Aber Miller (piano) 6-9pm no cover Don't think of it as work, think of it as fun! All ages Mateel Comedy Cabaret 8pm No Good Redwood Ramblers 9pm www.OldTownCoffeeEureka.com DJ Jsun & friends (dance music) 9pm-midnight www.persimmons.net Steel Standing, Samba da Alegria 9pm Get your growlers filled Irish Music Night 7:30-10:30pm John Ludington, Lyndsey Battle 7pm B-Stars (honky tonk) 9pm $10 Irish Music Night 7:30-10:30pm Compost Mountain Boys (bluegrass) 9pm Karaoke 7-10pm MXMSTR KRSHN2N 10pm Speakeasy Saints (R&B) 9pm Sangria and Snacks 4-6:30 MXMSTR KRSHN2N 10pm Blake & Rich (bluegrass) 8pm SugaFoot (blues duo) 7:30pm Ladies night ($1 off drinks) 8pm Boss Levelz 10pm Rude Lion 10pm Butcher (jam/folk) 9pm Cinco de Mayo! $1 off tequila shots 5-d-Mayo w/MXMSTR KRSHN2N 10pm www.robertgoodmanwines.com Dinner reservations 407-3550 Buddy Reed (blues) 7-10pm Cinco de Mayo w/ Jim Lahman Band (blues/rock) 9:30pm Located in beautiful Old Town Eureka Uptown Friday, Guerrilla Takeover (dance music) 10pm Francis Vanek, Jim Wilde, Damien Roomets, Joani Rose 7pm DJ Ray's Mixtape Release 9pm $8 Tasting Room open Fridays 4-midnight World Dance Party 7pm class 8pm party, all ages $5 Funky Full Moon Dance Party 9pm Arts Alive! w/Trifecta (rock, blues, jazz, etc.) 6pm Cinco de Mayo: DJ Jsun (dance music) 10pm Find us on Facebook Hum. Republic Cinco de Mayo 9pm Tasting Room Open 12-12 Learn more at our website Eyes Anonymous (new wave) no cover 9pm The Tumbleweeds (cowboy) 6-8pm Blue Rhythm Revue (R&B) no cover 9pm The Billies (rock/country) no cover 9pm Happy Hour: $1 off wells Dr. Squid (rock) no cover 9pm $ 18.99 1.75 litre thur 5/3 www.thealibi.com Kris Delmhorst (folk) 8pm $15/$12 Ocean Night Films ft. Ocean Frontiers Doors at 6:30pm $3 All ages fri 5/4 Find us on Facebook. sat 5/5 TBA 11pm $5 French Dinner and Dance 5:30pm Big Screen Showcase 6pm $5 Whip It Doors at 7:30pm $5 Rated PG-13 Strix Vega, Drifter Killer, Indianola, Side Iron, Splinter Cell 9pm $5 21+ Cinco de Mayo Reggae Party 9pm Salsa and Samba 6pm Happy Hour: $1 off pints Taxi (rock) no cover 9pm Fine Wines Spirits Beer Soda Premium Tobacco 786 9th St., On the Plaza 822-0414 BLONDIES Arcata 822-3453 BLUE LAKE CASINO 668-9770 777 Casino Way, Blue Lake THE BRIDGE Fernbridge 725-2190 CAFE MOKKA Arcata 822-2228 CHAPALA CAF� Eureka 443-9514 CHER-AE HEIGHTS 677-3611 27 Scenic Dr. Trinidad CLAM BEACH INN McKinleyville EUREKA INN 518 7th St. FIELDBROOK MARKET Fieldbrook HEY JUAN! BURRITOS 1642 1/2 G St. Arcata HUMBOLDT BREWS 826-2739 856 10th St. Arcata HUMBOLDT STATE UNIVERSITY JAMBALAYA 822-4766 Arcata LARRUPIN CAFE Trinidad LIBATION 825-7596 761 8th St. Arcata LIL' RED LION 444-1344 1506 5th St Eureka MAD RIVER BREWERY 668-5680 101 Taylor Way Blue Lake MATEEL COMMUNITY CENTER NOCTURNUM Eureka OCEAN GROVE Trinidad OLD TOWN COFFEE & CHOC. 211 F St. Eureka 445-8600 PEARL LOUNGE 507 2nd St. Eureka 444-2017 PERSIMMONS GARDEN GALLERY 1055 Redway Drive 923-2748 RED FOX TAVERN 415 5th St Eureka REDWOOD CURTAIN BREWING 550 South G St., Arcata 826-7222 REDWOOD RAKS 616-6876 824 L Street, Arcata redwoodraks.com REDWOOD YOGURT Arcata RIVERWOOD INN Phillipsville ROBERT GOODMAN WINES 937 10th St. Arcata 826-WINE SHAMUS T BONES 409-3550 191 Truesdale St., Eureka SICILITO'S PIZZERIA Garberville SIDELINES Arcata Plaza SILVER LINING 3561 Boeing Ave., McK SIX RIVERS BREWERY Central Ave. McK. 839-7580 THE SPEAKEASY 444-2244 411 Opera Alley, Eureka TOBY & JACKS Arcata Plaza Mirage (Fleetwood Mac tribute) no cover 9pm 14 th An niv ers ary 1644 G. St. 16th & G 822-1965 must be 21 & over A 8p dmi m ssi - 4 on Fr pm ee Tip F 2 T oo 18 - 4 - op H d! + w 1 oo ith Spe die ID cia Ra ls ffle s Fre e Fr Ma iday, y1 1th Buy any 2 Hats/Beanies SAVE $5 G ENTLEMEN ' S C LUB CLUB: 443-5696 | BAR: 443-6923 King Salmon Exit, Hwy. 101, Eureka W O M E N -O W N E D Buy any 2 T-Shirts SAVE $5 Buy any 2 Hoodies SAVE $10 and get 2 pairs of Humboldt Shoelaces EUREKA BAYSHORE MALL 707-476-0400 ARCATA 1642 G ST. LIKE US ON FACEBOOK! FABULOUSTIPTOP.COM (Next to Hey Juan Burritos) 707-822-3090 28 NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 � northcoastjournal.com The Shondes - Sunday at the Alibi with DJ Anya sun 5/6 The Shondes (Jewish punk) DJ Anya 11pm $3 Voices That Heal 3:30 Babe Doors at 5:30pm $5 Rated G mon 5/7 www.thealibi.com tues 5/8 2-Fer Tues: buy any breakfast or lunch item 8am-3pm: 2nd for 1/2 off wed 5/9 Irish Pub Wednesdays: with $2 wells Jazz Lounge: Randles, Wu, LaBolle 8p Find our website at www.arcatatheatre.com Like us on Facebook! Sci Fi Night ft. Zardoz (1974) 6pm-10pm All ages Free www.barflypub.com $100,000 Strike It Rich Karaoke w/ KJ Leonard 8pm Karaoke w/ DJ Marv 9pm-1am Receive one free swipe on the Strike It Rich kiosk Quiz Night 7pm www.bluelakecasino.com Open Mic Night 6pm Free Pool & $3 Wells Poker Tournament 6:30pm Fat Tire Tuesdays $2.00 Fat Tire Pints Open Jam 6pm Karaoke w/ DJ Marv 9pm-1am Bear River Casino Hotel For reservations call 707-733-9644 Wild Wing Wednesday w/ 25� wings m LIBATION MATTHEW COOK, P F ., M WINE SHOP . .� . .� WINE BY THE GLASS ALWAYS AVAILABLE! Karaoke w/Chris Clay 8pm 9-ball tournament 8pm 8-Ball Tournaments at 8pm Karaoke with Chris Clay 8pm Free Pool & $3 Wells Gin & Guitar Stan (country) 5-7pm ABER MILLER, P S ., M M H , -T H M , - Rule #1: Suck it up! Rule #2: Learn rule #1 UPCOMING: The Trouble May 10 University Singers 8pm $7/$3 Brainfeeder, Mono Poly, Ryat 9pm Try our new Sake! Come for the beer, stay for the clowns! Open Sundays Water Day 9am - 5pm Mimosa Mondays $3.00 pints of Mimosas all day long! Fruition, Huckle (folk/Americana) 9pm $10 Fish Taco Tuesdays $3.50 for one $7.00 for two UPCOMING: Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers, May 20 Weensday: all Ween from 4:30-10pm AND 10% off your order! www.humboldtbrews.com Dancehall Reggae Night 9pm Aber Miller (piano) 6-9pm NEW SUMMER HOURS! �F -T S - � W B S :O M S 8th Street on the Arcata Plaza � 825-7596 Wine Bar overlooking the Arcata Plaza The other Red Lion Growler Mondays $3 off refills www.libation.com Night Beats (garage soul) Cosmonauts (garage pop), Bored Again 9:30pm $3 JD Jeffries CD Release (folk) 6-8:30pm We are a certified wine shipper Disastroid (San Fran rock) 6pm No Good Redwood Ramblers (bluegrass/old time) 6pm WWW: Smasheltooth, The Pirate 9pm Rude Lion Sound (reggae) 8pm Now serving beer and wine Closed www.pearlloungeeureka.com Now reopen for spring! Sit and sip. Closed www.pearlloungeeureka.com Open 2-10pm Wed-Fri Tasting Room open Mon-Wed 4-11pm Thu 4-12 Swing Dance Night 7:30-10:30pm $5 www.OldTownCoffeeEureka.com Tequila Tuesdays muchas variedades Handcrafted items for children and adults. Happy Day! Happy hour all day! West African Drum/Dance 5:30-7pm $10 Open mic w/ Mike Anderson (music/spoken) 6:30pm www.pearlloungeeureka.com www.persimmons.net Jam Session 9pm www.redwoodcurtainbrewing.com www.redwoodraks.com Tapping IGA from the Oak Hoop Dance w/ Nicole 5:30-7:30pm, two classes northcoastjournal.com For Everything Humboldt County Cinco de Mayo Celebration Saturday Enchiladas & Prime Rib Tacos Tequilla Drink Specials Jim Lahman Band 9:30pm Dancing! Tommy Castro (PRESALE ONLY) Kindred Spirits (folk) 6-9pm Oysters, oysters, oysters! 826-WINE Special events/meetings 273-8054 The fine taste tasting room Music bookings 273-8054 Salsa Night! Lesson 7pm, dancing 8-11pm $5 Full cocktail bar Karaoke 8pm Burning Sage noon-3pm Jimi Jeff's Jam 9pm Sunday Mimosa and Bloody Mary specials Karaoke 9pm w/ sushi Open Sun-Thu 4-11pm Fri-Sat 4pm-2am Sunny Brae Jazz 9pm w/ fried chicken SugaFoot (trumpet/guitar duo) 6pm Peace of Mind Orchestra: unplugged 8pm Wednesday Happy Hour 4-6:30pm Que Lastima! Reservations Recommended 407-3550 Off Broadway behind the Best Western Bayshore Inn 1911 Truesdale St., Eureka northcoastjournal.com � NORTH COAST JOURNAL � THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2012 ! 29 Kyra GardNer, ColleeN laCy aNd sarah MCKiNNey iN For Better. photo Courtesy of redwood CurtaiN Wedding Ring Tone Do it Legally Low Cost 215 Evaluation Center $ 85 Any Doctor All Renewals Cellular comedy connects at Redwood Curtain By William S. Kowinski email@example.com C Doctor's office available on site State Licensed Confidential, Safe and Easy Walk-ins Wed & Sat 12-6pm Special discount for Seniors, SSI & Veterans $5 New Patie nts SAVE with men tion this ad of 0 Lowest Price Evaluations in HC Medical Cannabis Consultants (across from HC Court House) (707) 407- 0527 508 I Street, Eureka lassic farce involves people running in and out of a lot of doors. There are multiple deceptions and discoveries, and a frantic frenzy to manage a situation that is obviously and hilariously already out of control. But a large chunk of today's reality is virtual, and the opening and closing of doors often involves key strokes, touch screens and tiny buttons on cell phones that are too smart for their own good. That's the brilliant theatrical insight behind the farce by playwright Eric Coble called For Better, now onstage at Redwood Curtain in Eureka. Coble ups the ante by placing his characters in the virtually virtual habitats of the new service class, for whom identical airports and cloned hotels are the ground of their physical being. The satire practically writes itself but Coble adds verisimilitude and poignancy to the instant portraits of these characters and their insecure connections, when "can you hear me now?" is not just a funny ad line but a momentous question, if not a plaintive cry. Karen Baedeker (played by Kyra Gardner) has met her true love -- she thinks, maybe -- at a Sheraton Buffet Breakfast during the International Food Conference (they're both in food service) and has decided to marry him. He's Max Aphelion, a location scout for Starbucks (Karen Baedeker, Max Aphelion of Starbucks -- there's enough in those names for a PhD thesis already). We never meet him, but then Karen herself has only seen him three times. They talk on the phone and text a lot, though. First she must tell her tech-challenged father, Wally (Ken Klima), who is happy about it, and then on the phone to her sister Francine (Colleen Lacy), who is not. Francine pauses outside the marketing focus group she's running to call her husband Michael (Anthony Mankins), who is off selling more insurance for satellite TV dishes. Francine suggests getting their friend Lizzie (Sarah McKinney) to Google this Max guy, so Michael calls her. Freespirited Lizzie works from home, monitoring seller ratings for eBay. She is also Michael's former girlfriend. Meanwhile, their friend Stuart (Kyle Handziak) is off in Asia being the personification of the nerdy guy in the now nearly ancient commercials who goes everywhere to test cell coverage. He is devastated by the news, since he's been carrying a crush on Karen he's never quite acted on. They all carry on multiple conversations at the same time, and when the wrong call-waiting door opens ... As per the playwright's instructions, the action is spread out on nearly bare platforms, and for once the neck-challenging width of the Redwood Curtain stage has a purpose. Our gaze is as separated and fragmented as the conversations. (Despite the required bareness, Elizabeth Uhazy's set design with the geometric color-coded lines on the floor is elegant and suggestive.) The actors are as convi