Ardent for Life Spring 2021

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Ardent content food

& flavor 18. Garden Chowder Carole Morris


20. Cultural “Immersion” Cindy Della Monica 24. Apricot & Lavender Muffins Carole Morris 26. Strawberry Martini Bogle Vineyard

feature 28. Old Town Plaza

home 34. Open House No-No’s


36. Stephanie & Eric

profile 40. Dinorah Crossing Cultures with Music


42. Book Reviews Sacramento Public Library

education 48. What I’ve learned CT Morris

community 22. Anniversary Celebration Cheese Central 44. The Great Read Book Fair 47. Summer Events McConnell Estates Winery

health 50. The Great Undoing Anna Osborn 52. Living Healthy Elk Grove Vitamins 56. The Keys to Healthy Aging Kaiser Permanente 58. What is Intense Pulsed Light? Rejuvenation Wellness 60. Fitness In 2021 Switch Fitness

40. 6. - Spring 2021

history 64. Travel Elizabeth Pinkerton

Contributor’s Corner Justin Azevedo

Justin has been a Youth Services Librarian for Sacramento Public Library since 2010, and is currently the Youth Materials Selector for the system.

D’Lee Daleo

Switch Fitness Owner with a passion for life, family, friends and fitness. She's never met a stranger, loves the movie Elf and is living proof that fitness can be fun.

Aaron Andrew Grove

Serial Entrepreneur and Owner of Purely CBD of Elk Grove

Scott and Dana Halvorson

We are Sacramento photographers, shooting everywhere from Tahoe to San Francisco, and we have a love for travel beyond.

Tra Huynh

Owner of Two Twenty Photos is a Fun Wedding and Family Photographer.

Dr. Dayle A. Imperato

A Board Certified physician, she has served the Sacramento community for the past 20 years. Owner of Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine in Old Town, Elk Grove.

Nan Mahon

Is an author and journalist. She is a member City of Elk Grove Committee for the Arts and received the Elk Grove 2011 Mayor’s Award for volunteerism in the Arts.

Jamie McCalman

Switch Fitness Owner and Mom to Braden, Kyla and Lea. Some Moms can juggle a lot, Jamie can literally juggle her three kids; yeah, she’s that strong.

Cindy Della Monica

Cheesemonger and Owner of Cheese Central in Lodi, Ca.

Carole Morris

Instructional Specialist, Author and Adjunct Professor. She is married to an outstanding, brilliant man and the mother of two grown awe-inspiring children, and grammie to three flawless grandchildren.

Anna Osborn

Anna lives in Elk Grove with her husband and school aged twins. She owns Life Unscripted Counseling in Midtown Sacramento.

Amanda Perry

Marketing Manager at McConnell Estates Winery

Elizabeth Pinkerton

Teacher and Administrator for 40 years, she is now a historian and author.

Justin Pinnell

Justin is not just another pretty face in Real Estate. He enjoys long walks on the beach and high mountain sunsets.

Susie Franklin Roeser

Owner & full time employee of Gifts From The Heart Of Elk Grove. Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mom x2, Carpool Minivan driver, 4-H Leader and lover of all things creative.

Louis Silveira

Newsletter Editor, Webmaster, and Archivist at the Elk Grove Historical Society

Dianna Singh

Owner of Elk Grove Vitamins for the past six years.

Brendle Wells

Is a librarian and lifelong reader who has a passion for sharing books with pretty much anyone she meets. She currently works as the Adult Materials Selector for the Sacramento Public Library and asks, “What have you read lately?”

10. - Spring 2021

For full bios of our contributors, please visit

There’s always a “sunrise and always a sunset and it’s up to you to choose to be there for it… Put yourself in the way of beauty. -Cheryl Strayed-

creative director

executive editor

business manager

Sara Pinnell

Carole Morris

art & production

Justin Pinnell


View Ardent for Life online at

Copyright © 2021 Mrs. and Mr. Publishing Published by Mrs. and Mr. Publishing six times a year Want to know about great events, open houses, and more? Like us on Facebook at Ardent For Life is distributed in Elk Grove, Sacramento, Lodi, and every point in between. Have a great story idea, or know someone that we should feature? Email us with your comments & suggestions at Interested in increasing your business and partnering with Ardent For Life? Check out The information in this publication is for informational purposes only. Mrs. and Mr. Publishing Inc. (DBA Ardent for Life) assumes no liability or responsibility for any inaccurate or incomplete information, nor for any actions taken in reliance thereon. The information contained about each individual, event or organization is not necessarily the views of the magazine.

ardent f o r

Checking In

l i f e

I’m so excited to see all of our migrating birds returning to us! The Pacific Flyway extends from Patagonia to Alaska, and birds such as herons, egrets, bald eagles, warblers, swallows, tanagers and flycatchers — just to name a few — are flying back to us. I’m a bird lover, I love the ugly ones and the pretty ones. But, there is something about the swallows as they chase after flying insects with acrobatic twists and turns…they are adorable! Right now they are busy building their nests all around our house and they truly make my heart sing. While I hear my neighbors mutter, “messy birds” with scowls on their faces; I’m confident they would change their tune if they understood what a service swallows did for them. They love to eat the insects that humans consider pesky and each bird eats 60 insects per hour (a whopping 850 per day). So what if they’re a little messy? They are natural pest control! Aren’t we blessed to live in such a beautiful state? Besides our gorgeous flowers, we have: rice, almonds, walnuts, plums, peaches, tomatoes, wheat, olives, corn, alfalfa, pears, sunflowers, grapes, kiwifruit, and hay all around us. I wish all of you a joyful spring—enjoy every sundrenched day!

executive editor

Carole Morris What did we learn after reading this issue? We have an interesting article on Old Town Plaza and the exciting happenings that are going on in the Old Town Area. There is an introspective article about The Great Undoing that I know will strike a chord in you. If you feel as if your life has been pretty much dismantled over the last 14 months, don’t feel alone—this article will give you some grounding. Elizabeth always writes amazing educational articles about Elk Grove. In this issue she wrote about the History of Travel in the City of Elk Grove! Starting with our Native American people, the Miwok families. We have delightful recipes that will make your mouth water and inspire you to try something new. Sit outside, sip your favorite beverage and immerse yourself in this issue of Ardent.


Garden Chowder By Carole Morris

18. - Spring 2021

food} The name of this soup alone invokes images of gardening…you know gardening gloves, gardening hat and a hoe. While it may seem unnerving at first, wouldn’t it be fun to grow your OWN celery, onions, potatoes, cauliflower, carrots and broccoli? While we know that gardening is a very rewarding hobby, it’s also considered exercise—profitable exercise that gives you soup ingredients! So skip the gym this summer and do your squats picking vegetables instead, truly a win-win.


2 cups broccoli (broken into florets)

4 tbsp. butter 2 onions

4 cans chicken bouillon (or 6 tbsp. dried chicken bouillon)

4 stalks of celery (chopped)

Water (to cover ingredients) 2 tbsp. parsley (chopped)

6 red potatoes (skins on) diced

2 cups cheddar cheese

3 carrots (chopped)

1/2 cup cornstarch

(feeds 4 favorite folks)

2 cups cauliflower (broken into florets)

1 pint half and half Salt and pepper (to individual taste)


In a large soup pan sauté onions, celery, and potatoes in butter (until light brown). Next, put carrots, cauliflower, and broccoli in pan. Cover with chicken bouillon and enough water so all vegetables are covered with water. Simmer until carrots and potatoes are cooked (test with a fork). Stir in Cheddar cheese. Mix cornstarch in measuring cup with ½ cup of cold water, then slowly add to soup mixture (stirring constantly). Next, stir in half and half and season with salt and pepper. If you like your soup thicker, add more cornstarch mixture until desired thickness is reached.   19


Cultural “Immersion” Without Traveling By Cindy Della Monica, Cheesemonger and Owner, Cheese Central

An example of modern train of thought, with a laptop or phone in front of you: Google… planting flowers for honey bees… snapdragon, violets, hostas and more … violets make an Easter beverage, tips for colored eggs… matrushka dolls and colorful pysanki eggs!... Pascha May 1, 2021 (Orthodox Easter)… Yummm, Ukrainian Pascha food! Vodka, warm butter, fried onions and potato pierogi… recipes from The Ukraine… how to shop a Russian grocery store … 20. - Spring 2021

This train of thought, and the curious googling trend which we now perform, is popularly termed “going down the rabbit hole”. This particular “rabbit hole” started with a question to Google—Spring flowers to attract honey bees--and amongst the topics will be a website about making violet flower syrup for Easter beverages, which you click on…. and a new topic catches your eye about coloring Easter eggs (though Easter was a couple of weeks ago) it is still interesting…and the images show pysanki eggs made the Ukrainian way, and those are shown next to decorated vodka bottles and fascinating articles about Pascha food. Before you know it, the garden question has lead you to delicious recipes for a zakuski (“vodka snacks”) table, an Amazon purchase

of an ethnic cookbook called Katchka, which is also a Ukrainian restaurant in Portland, where you plan to visit this summer, so Katchka is typed into your phone notes to make dining reservations. A bit of cultural immersion via the “rabbit hole”… You’re welcome… Nazdrovia! Though I have never visited the Ukraine, I did marry into a half-Ukrainian family and my cultural education began. My Lutheran upbringing and Germaninfluenced Easter table or Christmas baking was really all that I had known. Introduction to Pascha and the incredible foods made to specifically fill the void that the 40-day Lenten fast had created was an amazing experience! And, over the years, I have mastered many of these dishes. By the way, Katchka (the cookbook) is a fascinating read for immersion into this culture—there is even a section called “5 Rules For Drinking Vodka”. Pages about shopping in a Ukrainian grocery, and the unusual food and equipment to purchase there. Specifics on table setting, and patterns of tablecloths. So very rich in fact, history, and lore. P.S. We did dine at the restaurant in Portland. It is a MUST for a delicious experience with warm and friendly owners and staff. An interesting tidbit here: Orthodox Christians celebrate Easter (Pascha) on the first Sunday after the first ecclesiastical full moon (according to the Julian calendar) which Western Christians replaced with the Gregorian calendar. Hence, Eastern and Western Easter is separated sometimes by as much as six weeks, only to be held on the same date every third year or so.


Though travel is still an iffy proposition this year, our silver lining of the times means that we can “immerse” ourselves into any culture we choose. So, Orthodox families bring a colorful filled basket to the church upon arrival to the Pascha candlelight midnight mass on Saturday evening, to be left in the parish hall awaiting blessing. Bursting with foods to break the Lenten fast—bright red-dyed hard cooked eggs (to signify the blood of Christ and the miracle of rebirth); a decadent spreadable “cheesecake,” also called Pascha; golden kulich, an egg-and butter-laden yeast bread to hold the Pascha cheese; a vessel of salt and a bit of ham. A bud vase of fresh flowers, a specially decorated candle, and maybe a chocolate bunny completes the family basket. Liturgy, as this service is called, is finished usually around 3 a.m., ending with the priest shouting three times “Christos voskres” ('Christ is risen!”), and the congregation responding “Voistinu voskres” ('Indeed He is risen!'). Everyone gathers in the hall, where the tables filled with baskets seems to stretch to infinity, and the air is laden with the buffet’s aroma of MEAT and more! The basket candles are lit, the parish choir continues in song while the priest blesses the baskets and sprinkles all liberally with holy water. The fast will be broken in just minutes—and your mouth salivates through your song! And finally, one last series of joyous shouts “Christos voskres!!” and response. The vodka and wine are poured, the red eggs are broken and consumed. The buffet table groans under the weight of meat-filled dishes, cheesy casseroles and eggy delights. Several pyramids of beautifully decorated Pascha cheese, with the initials XB on the side for Xpnctoc Bockpece or Kristos voskrese, are surrounded with fresh bright red strawberries and slices of kulich bread. The dessert table is resplendent with chocolates, cakes, cookies and more. The feasting will continue sometimes until dawn, and then a good sleep will be in order. A short church service will be held Sunday at noontime, and then parish families will spend the afternoon in many brief visits to each other’s homes for a bite of holiday food and

a small toast to continue the celebration into the night. Pascha is indeed the biggest event in an Orthodox calendar! Though travel is still an iffy proposition this year, our silver lining of the times means that we can “immerse” ourselves into any culture we choose. Take a deep dive down the “rabbit hole” for inspiration into Mexico’s culture, and celebrate in a big way on Cinco de Mayo! Perhaps the upcoming summer temperatures will be a catalyst into the Caribbean cultures, and the spontaneity of beach life, tropical foods, cold Red Stripe beers, and upbeat steel-drum music. I could get lost in the worlds of Japan/origami/ tea ceremony, or become an honorary Punjabi before exploring some other provinces of India. Wouldn’t you like to learn how to order “beaver tails” in French as do the Quebecois? (check out beaver tails on www.tasteatlas. com) A fascinating Canadian world exists in our “next door neighbor,” a very worthy deep-dive via Google!

Now is the time to pick a theme for a unique Mother’s Day on May 9. I’m considering “immersion” into the Deep South for a Kentucky Derby-inspired luncheon. I’ll keep the theme a secret so as not to tip off an impromptu viewing on race day May 1. I’ll have decorated hats for all on Mother’s Day, we’ll “bet” on the horses, drink fresh mint juleps, and dine as the Kentuckians do. I’ll record the Derby on May 1, Send me an email to share your choice of “cultural immersion” to honor the mothers in your life! It is great fun to include the kids in the immersion experience—play new music or games, have them help cook new foods to share with each other, or prepare special table decorations as an art project. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination!

Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders

A tribute to Southern taste buds, adapted from Taste of Home magazine! This delicious recipe will suit everyone in the family, maybe even “heat up” the betting on the horses.


4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut crosswise in half 8 slider buns 6 C canola oil 1 egg 1/2 C buttermilk 1 C flour 1 T salt 2 t black pepper 1 T hot sauce, or less for a milder flavor 2 T cayenne, or less or a milder flavor 1/2 t garlic powder 1 t paprika 1/2 t chili powder 2 T honey

Instructions 1. Prepare two bowls to coat

chicken. In the first bowl, place egg, milk, and hot sauce and mix well.

Into the second bowl, combine flour, salt & black pepper. Pat thigh pieces dry with a paper towel. Coat each piece in flour, then egg mix, then back into the flour. Repeat until all pieces are coated.

2. In a Dutch oven or heavy castiron skillet, heat oil until it reaches 325*. When the oil is up to temp, fry a few pieces at a time, without overcrowding the pan. Allow the oil to return to temperature before adding the next batch. Fry each piece until golden brown, with internal temperature measuring 165* (about 6 minutes per side). As you remove the pieces, place them on a rack over a rimmed baking sheet to cool.

3. In another bowl, combine cayenne, chili powder, garlic, paprika, and honey along with 1/2 cup of the frying oil. Stir well, then brush this oil solution over the fried chicken pieces. Serve on slider buns with thick-cut pickles.   21


Cheese Central’s

Anniversary Celebration Streamers, balloons, party flags and new T-shirts were just some of the outward signs that CHEESE CENTRAL was having a party! The March 19 and 20, 2021, in-store 10th Anniversary celebration was blessed with beautiful sunny skies and bright smiling faces as shoppers and guests (new and regulars) enjoyed warm greetings from staff. Guests received samples of the "Featured 5" cheeses from our cheese mongers, tasty products from the Delectable Pantry shelves, and delicious bites from the Grand Central Kitchen's repertoire of recipes from culinary classes, scheduled to start again in late summer. Our wonderful friend, Chef Ray Duey, entertained with his amazing skills in food carving, and treated us with a fruit and vegetable "frame" for fun photo ops! (Google Chef Ray for more info and awesome photos). New, seasonal cheeses have arrived, and new local food products are stocked in the Pantry. Welcome to CHEESE CENTRAL for amazing edibles--we will help you enjoy your spring and summer meals, gatherings and holidays!

22. - Spring 2021


Apricot& Lavender


By Carole Morris


It is the season for apricots—also known as the fruit of freshness. Their origin? Drum roll, please…Armenia… which is one of the places where apricot trees grow wild and are known as Armenian plums. Additionally, Sara (Ardent’s creative director) has roots in Armenia! Now we know for sure delightful and original things do come from Armenia.

24. - Spring 2021

food} All over the world apricots are considered to be the most delectable of all fruits. They are used in both fresh and dry form, preserved as jam or made into a wine. Moreover, apricots have a lot of health benefits: • Nutritious and low in calories. Vitamin A, C, E and potassium.

• Apricots are a great source of many antioxidants, including beta carotene and high in a group of polyphenol antioxidants called flavonoids, which protect against illnesses, including diabetes and heart disease • Promotes eye health (Vitamins A & E)

• Good for your gut, Apricots contain both soluble and insoluble fiber.


3 tsp culinary lavender

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar

3 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup butter (softened)

1/2 cup milk

2 eggs

2 cups apricots (sliced)

1/2 cup almond meal

3/4 tsp almond extract

1 1/2 cups flour

1/2 cup powdered sugar

Directions Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray muffin pan with non-stick spray.

1. Put sugar and lavender in a food processor, process (until ground into a fine powder). Next, pour sugar mixture into a bowl and cream together with the softened butter. Add in the eggs, one at time, and beat until thoroughly mixed. Slowly stir in the milk and the almond extract. 2. In a separate bowl, combine the

almond meal, flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients

into the egg mixture. Next, stir (with a spoon) in the apricots… just to combine.

3. Scoop the batter into muffin pan, filling them about 3/4 full. 4. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, (or until toothpick comes out clean when stuck into the middle).

5. Cool then sprinkle the tops with powdered sugar and sprigs of lavender. WOW, aren’t they beautiful?   25



Martini Sauvignon Blanc

By Bogle Vineyards

Fruity and fresh, this wine and vodka martini makes an impressive party cocktail that is sure to please. Ingredients • 2 cups strawberries • 1/4 cup granulated sugar • 2 tbsp strawberry jam • 1 bottle Bogle Sauvignon Blanc • 9 oz vodka • Ice cubes • 6 fresh strawberries, for garnishing Instructions 1. Toss together strawberries, sugar and

jam; let stand for 15 to 20 minutes. Purée in blender until smooth. Strain through fine-mesh strainer.

2. For each cocktail, add 1 1/2 oz strawberry syrup, 4 oz wine, 1 1/2 oz vodka and ice cubes to cocktail shaker. Shake until frosty. 3. Strain into glasses. Garnish each serving with strawberry. Serves: 6


26. - Spring 2021

Substitute raspberries for strawberries if desired.   27

What's happening at

Old Town Plaza By Justin Pinnell

As you are driving past the Old Town Plaza you might ask yourself, “What in the world is happening to Old Town Plaza?” The happenings are exciting because there are several projects in design and construction (in the City of Elk Grove) in the Old Town Area. Some of the projects the city has decided to get off the ground include; street improvements, the addition of bike lanes, utility undergrounding, utility extensions, sidewalks, drainage improvements, and parking lot improvements. All of this, in addition to the continued improvements to the Old Town Plaza site, is located at the corner of Elk Grove Boulevard and Railroad Street. The goal of these projects is to create a sense of community by providing improvements to access and circulation for those walking, biking, riding transit and taking rideshare, and for those needing a place to park to spend some time in Old Town Elk Grove. The City wants to create opportunities to gather in the Old Town area in order to improve the economic vitality of Old Town. Out of all these projects, in and around Old Town Elk Grove, my personal favorite is the giant brick building you see from Elk Grove Blvd. (right by the railroad tracks). My wife and I walked by it years ago and thought it was a shame such a beautiful building was slowly decaying. We thought maybe we could buy it and breathe life into it again. However, after looking closer we knew it was a task we could never undertake. It really looked insurmountable, but there was a team of women, backed by the City, who decided they could tackle it.

We asked three members of the team some background information about who they are, an insight into their vision, and how they are getting all these major projects done. 28. - Spring 2021

The first team member is Rachael Brown. Tell us about your job at the City, what is your role?

My current role at the City is Economic Development Manager. My job duties include a variety of special projects, but my focus is on hospitality, entertainment, and retail. I am also the Board Chair for Explore Elk Grove, our tourism district. I really enjoy what I do because I help with fun projects like breweries, wineries and restaurants. More specifically, I am responsible for trying to improve amenities for both residents and visitors of Elk Grove.

Please explain your role in this project.

Initially, I was involved in finding a qualified developer to take on this historic building renovation. We engaged a few different teams before finding D&S development, who specializes in historic rehab projects like this. I am project manager for the developer’s side of the project and act as the liaison between the developer and City staff to ensure the project moves forward and the terms of the agreement are met.


Old Town Plaza

The goal of these projects is to create a sense of community by providing improvements to access and circulation for those walking, biking, riding transit and taking rideshare, and for those needing a place to park to spend some time in Old Town Elk Grove. In your opinion, what was the most challenging part of the project?

In some ways, getting started was the hardest part. Finding the right developer was the most critical part of this project because the building needed so much work. We were fortunate to connect with D&S Development and find a motivated partner who shared the same vision as us. As with any historic rehab project, there have been a number of other challenges once we started designing the project. I think the utility design was a major component to moving this project forward – the street width is so narrow that the team had to be very creative in how the utilities were designed.

How do you see this project changing Old Town?

Since I started working at the City in 2014, I envisioned the redevelopment of Railroad Street. I initiated conversations with our City Manager about buying the old brick building, but the critical piece was finding the right developer in addition to having a supportive City Manager and Council to coordinate the partnership that has led to the project you see today. This project will act as a catalyst for downtown Elk Grove and begin to reshape this part of town into a thriving, entertainment district. Like a lot of Elk Grove residents, I actually grew up here. I watched the city grow from a

small town to the thriving mid-size city that it is today. Having seen the growth over the last 40 years has helped me immensely in my job. I remember when Elk Grove did not connect to I-5... but as the city continues to grow, I want to help Elk Grove keep its small town feel while adding amenities to maintain the high quality of life that residents enjoy.

Next, let’s meet Kristin Parsons. Tell us about your job at the City, what is your role?

I am a Senior Civil Engineer in our Capital Improvement Program which is a division of our Public Works Department. I am responsible for overseeing the funding, planning, programming, design and construction of many of our capital projects including roads, trails, sidewalks, City owned building facilities, drainage improvements, community enhancements, etc. I also manage our Grants program looking for grant opportunities to fund capital projects and other work throughout the City.

Please explain your role in this project.

Prior to starting my current position in 2018, I was a Project Manager for the Railroad Street Improvements Project. Subsequent to taking on

my current position, I decided to remain as Project Manager for this important project in order to ensure consistent communication with the business and residents in the area were maintained. Additionally, I wanted this project to   29


Old Town Plaza

in Boston (Central Artery Third Harbor Tunnel). This project hits home for me on a personal level, I think it is partly the proximity to my own home as well as the fact that I grew up spending time in Old Town. There was no other Elk Grove at the time, but it also has to do with filling an important need in our community and providing a benefit to so many Citywide. It is a unique area that celebrates the heritage and history of Elk Grove. In addition, the Old Town projects have been managed by mostly women as the lead in planning, design, construction and all support areas. This is unusual being that civil engineering and construction are male dominated fields historically. I have had the opportunity to work with some other amazing female civil engineers and professionals... an opportunity which doesn’t come around every day. I hope this is a sign of the future and of changes coming our way, paving the future for young girls interested in entering the world of engineering and construction!

move forward as quickly and efficiently as possible. In my current position, I also have oversight over both the Railroad Street Improvements and the Old Town Plaza Projects, so I have worked closely with the entire team for both projects... from design through construction. In addition, I have worked closely with our Economic Development Staff and with the developer’s design and construction teams to ensure the private development occurring along Railroad Street works in conjunction with the City’s projects.

In your opinion, what was the most challenging part of the project?

Community outreach was key in designing this project, so I worked closely with residents who voiced a desire to be involved and tried to incorporate their ideas (where feasible) in order to create a sense of place when the projects are completed. The most challenging aspect of the design phase was utility design... and making that work with grading and drainage on an existing road that is very flat but is full of existing utilities, many of which were old and whose location was not certain.

How do you see this project changing Old Town?

My vision is that the project creates a sense of place where visitors and residents desire to spend 30. - Spring 2021

time with each other beyond simply getting a personal service attended to or having a bite to eat with friends or family. I want people to look forward to spending time walking around the area, frequenting shops after a meal, and enjoying coffee while sitting at Old Town Plaza. In addition to watching youngsters run around or play on the abandoned rail spur, which is being incorporated into our project in unique ways. I hope this project brings a renewed vibrancy to the area and attracts new business and restores the economic vitality of the existing businesses. We have some great businesses in Old Town and having spent summers here as a child (since the early 70s) and moving back to this area 10 years ago, I have a personal desire to see the area thrive as well. I look forward to not having to go far to enjoy a meal, do some wine tasting, shop, or grab an ice cream with my kids. A place where I can just sit and enjoy the beautiful weather that Elk Grove experiences almost year round. Once completed, this project will provide the additional parking Old Town needs to support these things, as well as events at the old Town Plaza. My career has included decades of working on important projects ranging from design and construction of affordable housing for California residents, to working on the “Big Dig” project

Last, but most certainly not least Ann Grava. Tell us about your job at the City, what is your role?

I’m the City’s contract Real Estate Manager, and my position is contracted through Interwest Consulting Group. As a staff augmentation, I represent the City in real estate negotiations when additional property rights are required to complete a public project or when the City needs to acquire additional buildings or land for new facilities, Economic Development or the City’s Housing Program.


Old Town Plaza

The investment in the Old Town Plaza and Railroad Street should bring a sense of community to the area by providing a comfortable place to gather and have special outdoor events. Please explain your role in this project.

My initial role for this project was to acquire the historic building at 9676 Railroad Street for Economic Development. I worked with the previous owner of the property and City staff and negotiated the purchase of the property. The property had been listed for sale for quite some time and we were successful in negotiating a purchase price significantly below the asking price. Once the City owned the property, Economic Development went to work to find a developer interested in ultimately acquiring the property from the City for commercial development. I assisted Economic Development as needed in drafting amendments to the purchase and sale agreement, and ensuring the City retained the necessary rights to complete the necessary roadway, utility and drainage infrastructure. In order to complete the public improvements, additional property rights were also required from A-1 Towing. I worked with the owner of A-1 Towing to acquire the needed roadway right-of-way and to ensure he would have continued use of his property after the public acqui32. - Spring 2021

sition and the project. Additionally, coordination with the businesses at the end of Railroad Street (and the neighboring owners) was required to ensure continued access to the business during construction and coordination of the removal of trees along the block wall.

In your opinion, what was the most challenging part of the project?

Ensuring the community, impacted property owners, and neighboring owners all have a voice in the public project. It is critical to the success of all projects to ask for and listen to input and be willing to make changes, when it makes sense to do so.

How do you see this project changing Old Town?

The investment in the Old Town Plaza and Railroad Street should bring a sense of community to the area by providing a comfortable place to gather and have special outdoor events. In order to have a thriving Old Town Business District, you need to draw people to the area. I think the

Old Town Plaza and the future development of 9676 Railroad Street will provide an awesome community gathering spot and a catalyst for new mixed use development. I truly enjoy engaging with the community and property owners, this is what makes my job fun... I meet the most interesting people! Infrastructure projects are necessary to build vibrant and safe communities and sometimes a project requires the acquisition of a home (or just a portion of someone’s property). Therefore working with impacted owners, and the design team, to help find ways to minimize impacts on their property is very rewarding and sometimes challenging. I personally would like to thank Racheal, Ann, and Kristen for taking time from all the hard work they are doing in Old Town to give me some insight into this monumental task.

I encourage everyone to take a walk through Old Town and watch the project unfold; it will also give you the opportunity to enjoy the unique local shops and restaurants.

home} real estate

Open House No-No’s When buying a home, there may be no single event as important as the open house. Attending an open house gives you the opportunity to see, feel, and experience the home for yourself, far beyond what’s possible from looking at photos, taking digital tours, or driving by on a sunny afternoon. The open house is when you really get to find out whether you can see yourself living in the home or not.

But if you want to get the most from an open house, there are some things to keep in mind (and some costly mistakes you’ll want to avoid). Not only is it possible to cost yourself money at an open house, but in some (rare) instances, a seller might not even entertain an offer based on somebody’s behavior at the open house. So if you want things to go smoothly, and want the best opportunity to buy your dream house, here are nine things you should never do at an open house:

1. Keep your shoes on when you’ve been asked to take them off

No one likes to walk around without shoes on, especially in somebody else’s home. But as an open house guest, you need to respect the seller’s instructions. If you refuse, you might be asked to leave, and blow your chance at landing an accepted offer.

2. Let your children roam around unattended

Parenting is difficult, and bringing your kids along with you to an open house is understandable—after all, they’ll be living there too. But when touring an open house, make sure to keep an eye on your children. We all know children tend to get into things, and a packed home is full of all sorts of interesting items. A good rule of thumb is to just pretend that you’re at a museum.

3. Loudly make negative comments about the house

We all have opinions, especially when it comes to a house that we’re considering paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for. But keep your negative opinions between you, your partner, and your agent; because if the seller’s agent overhears you, they might not only feel insulted, they’re likely to relay the comments to the seller, who might not take them too kindly if you put in an offer.

4. Pry into the seller’s personal belongings

Being allowed into someone’s home for an open house does not give you carte blanche to go through their 34. - Spring 2021

When we love a property, it can be difficult to contain our excitement, especially if we’re not used to playing our cards close to the chest. The open house, however, is one occasion when you’ll want to put on your poker face and play it cool. home} real estate personal stuff, no matter how intriguing it might be. Opening dresser drawers, touching clothing, pulling back bedding, and rifling through bookcases is a no-no, and violators are likely to be asked to leave. You’re there to see a property, not personal property.

5. Overshare

there, you don’t want to make an offer during the open house. Not only would this be out of the norm, but it would also reveal your eagerness and put you in a position of weakness during negotiations. So even if you’re absolutely obsessed, take a deep breath, step outside, and regroup with your agent and your loved ones before making a decision.

Unless you’re a trained spy, you probably don’t think too much about tempering your speech when chatting with strangers. But an open house is an exception, and you might want to consider what you’re revealing during conversations with (and around) the seller’s agents. Even though talking about how much you’re pre-approved for, where your kids go to school, how desperately you need a new home, or that your lease is ending soon might seem harmless, it can put you in a poor position when you begin negotiations, so act accordingly.

7. Spend too little time there (if you’re interested)

6. Make an offer

8. Lie about your intentions

Even if you absolutely love the house and would be willing to give up a kidney for the chance to live

There’s no need to spend hours at an open house, but if you walk in and walk right out, you might be doing yourself a disservice. To be sure, sometimes you know that it’s not a fit right away, but if you do like it, there’s nothing wrong with spending some time looking around and taking in the details. At the very least, it might help you remember the little things that you’ll be thinking about once you start planning to move in. Some people like to play games, but there’s really no upside to being disingenuous about your intentions

during an open house (or after). Whether you’re just there to look, or are truly serious about making an offer, don’t present yourself otherwise. Not only is it bad form, but words can travel a lot quicker than you might think, and the next time you want to be taken seriously, you might not be.

9. Show too much enthusiasm

When we love a property, it can be difficult to contain our excitement, especially if we’re not used to playing our cards close to the chest. The open house, however, is one occasion when you’ll want to put on your poker face and play it cool. If you show too much enthusiasm, the seller’s agent (and therefore the seller) will know that you’ll do just about anything to get the house—and that’s not the position you want to be in. Contact Justin Pinnell DRE- 02045095, M&M Real Estate at (916) 812.0576 or   35


Stephanie Eric

Photographed by Weddings by Scott and Dana

Who are you?

Stephanie (Esquivias) Masch and Eric Masch

How did you meet?

We met in college during our Junior Year at Santa Clara University. We had a lot of mutual friends, and started to get to know each other better during our time there. It wasn't until a few years after we graduated that we started dating. We did a lot of adventuring around the city of San Francisco including Giants games, music concerts, and restaurants.

The Proposal?

(Eric) Stephanie had no idea that I had a ring or had already talked to her parents about proposing. We had a fun date planned for a Friday afternoon, but all morning it had unexpectedly been raining. I was so worried the day would be ruined, but fortunately the sky cleared just before we headed out for the day. We walked out to Crissy Field in San Francisco – Stephanie still didn’t know I was going to propose, but started to piece it together as I nervously started telling her how much I loved her and how happy she makes me. The field was empty because of the earlier rain, so it was just us two walking through the wet grass. Then, with the Golden Gate Bridge as our backdrop, I got down on one knee and popped the question. (She said yes!)

36. - Spring 2021

What is love?

Stephanie: Love is wanting to do anything and everything to make him happy. Love is supporting him and all of his wildest dreams. Love is being there for each other during the good times and bad. Love is experiencing all that life has to offer… side by side, hand in hand.

Eric: Love is a choice you make every day to work together in a partnership, to support each other, to accept each other, and to make each other better. It is also an undeniable feeling of connectedness and happiness.

What do you love most about him?

The thing I love most about Eric is his carefree spirit. He can make any situation a million times better just by being himself. He’s got such a clever witty sense of humor, and it’s never a dull moment in our home. I love that he can always make me laugh and puts the biggest smile on my face.

What do you love most about her?

I love how deeply she cares about everything and everyone in her life; she has a strong connection with her family. Everything she does, or tries to do…

she does to the best of her ability. She is selfless in wanting the best for those she cares about and will go to the ends of the earth to stand up for them.

When did you know you were in love?

Stephanie: I knew I was in love with Eric for a few months before I finally said it. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment when love started, but I can tell you the first time I said it out loud. We went to a concert and we stopped at the food shack for some snacks. I looked over at him with mustard ALL over his face and I just blurted it out to him. For months I was hoping he would say it first, but I just couldn’t help myself! It was overwhelming.

When did you know you were in love?

Eric: I was living in San Jose and Stephanie lived in San Francisco when we started dating. Fairly early on I remember I was lying in bed thinking, “Wow, I really miss her right now” and the more I thought about why, it became clear to me how much I cared about her. I knew I loved her then, even though it may have taken me another month or two to actually say, “I love you” when she professed her love for me, too.




is wanting to do anything and everything to make him happy. Love is supporting him and all of his wildest dreams.   37




is selfless in wanting the best for those she cares about and will go to the ends of the earth to stand up for them. Fun facts

We are born and raised Californians, but have been living in New York City for the last year. We moved across the country three weeks before Covid started shutting everything down, talk about timing! We have a seven month old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, named Archie. We are biased, but he is adorable. In Eric’s spare time he likes to make music and he is also the household Chef. We LOVE stand-up Comedy


We wanted to have a combination of exploring new places, but also relaxing and enjoying our time together as newlyweds. We spent one week in Barcelona with a Paella cooking class, soccer game, nightlife and lots of Tapas and Sangria. We then spent a week in Italy between

38. - Spring 2021

Florence, Positano, and Rome with a Pasta cooking class, castle and wine tour and we even saw the Pope at the Vatican.

Wedding details

We got married on April 27, 2019 at Park Winters in Winters, California. We had a church wedding ceremony at St. Anthony’s Church, which is the parish Stephanie grew up in. For weeks, we were eagerly checking the weather to make sure the April rain showers faded away—and indeed they did. We had a lovely spring outdoor reception, with string lights throughout the property that lit up the night sky. We were surrounded by friends and family from all over, including Germany and Mexico! From pre-wedding preparations to the very last hour of the night, the day went smoothly without any issues. From the flowers, food, and music, to the photographers and wedding planner, everything came together perfectly.

Photographer Weddings by Scott and Dana Venue Park Winters Rentals Celebrations Party Rentals, La Tavola Linen Caterer Park Winters Cake Let Them Eat Cake Dessert Puros Churros

Hair and Makeup Brittney Kannel, Yoly Torres, Amanda Walker Florist Strelitzia Tux Rentals The Black Tux Bride's Dress Monique Lhuillier Bridesmaid's Dress Bella Bridesmaids

Wedding Coordinator Kate Whelan Events

Rings 3rd Street Jewelers

DJ DeBorba Events

Photobooth Cloud Nine Photobooth

Musician Astraeus String Quartet

Transportation API limousine

Dinorah profile}

Crossing Cultures with Music By Nan Mahon

Whether it’s the romance of a Mexican ballad, the traditional mariachi band, or the fun of American pop, Dinorah is a performer who commands any stage she is on. The range, clarity, and beauty of her voice demand her audience’s complete attention. “Performing is my heart and soul,” said Dinorah, whose persona blends with the genre, going from cultural to glamour or bohemian—as she relates to the songs. Her talent and style has earned her three local Sammie Awards. In 2012, Dinorah won the Latin Artist of the Year. In 2016 and 2017 she was named World Music Artist of the Year. Vocalist, songwriter and musician, Dinorah sings in five languages. She has toured Europe with venues that include flamenco, bolero, blues, salsa, funk and rock. On famous stages (that include the Hollywood Bowl) she has entertained beside such top names such as Stevie Wonder, Patti LaBelle, Celia Cruz, and Mariachi Sol de Mexico. It is a long way from Mexico City where Dinorah grew up. Dinorah and her sister, Gabriela, sang at subway and bus stations throughout Mexico City. “We would put out a tip jar,” she said. “It made us happy that people would pay us to sing.” Music filled the middle-class home where the girls grew up. There was little doubt their future would be in entertainment. “My mother wanted to be a dancer and so did I,” Dinorah said. “In high school I won a spot in the renowned CEDART School of the Arts.” 40. - Spring 2021

It was more than an hour on public transportation across Mexico City to the prestigious CEDART FRIDA KAHLO, (INBA) school, but the young dancer dreamed of becoming part of the National Ballet Company. That dreamed ended with a broken ankle at age 15.

“The next year, when I was 16, a professional band hired me to sing with them,” said Dinorah. “I never looked back.” Marriage to a medical student brought her to the United States. When that marriage ended, she married a businessman named Mark Klingler and moved to Sacramento. Her career has flourished and grown. She manages her own Dinorah’s Band, and produces the Mariachi Festival de Sacramento. In addition to music, she is the producer and host of Dinorah Desde, a YouTube series of interviews with Latinos who have made a mark on society. To date they have had thir-

teen shows, each one taking place in a different local restaurant. Other shows are planned for this year. Beyond the entertainment world, the musician and songwriter has a passion for cooking. Always looking to share her talents, this spring Dinorah and her husband will launch her line of salsas called Flame of Love. She said her love of cooking comes from learning in the kitchens of her mother and two grandmothers. They taught her not only Mexican but Spanish style food as well. “I started making tamales and selling them to friends,” she said. “That worked out so well I decided to sell my salsa also. Cooking is one of my favorite things to do.” But, like other musicians during the year of COVID, she has found her career put on hold with the close of all indoor venues and large outdoor gatherings. However, that did not stop her from entertaining. She set up equipment in the driveway of her home in a culde-sac in the Pocket area of Sacramento.



Vocalist, songwriter and musician, Dinorah sings in five languages. She has toured Europe with venues that include flamenco, bolero, blues, salsa, funk and rock. She invited her neighbors to bring chairs to the street and listen to a free solo concert. She found an appreciative audience and continues her driveway serenades as the world waits to return to normal. “We performers thrive on live audiences,” Dinorah said. “This pandemic has been a hard time for us. However, one of my biggest accomplishments during COVID is my all female MARIACHI BONITAS, de Dinorah Klingler, a beautiful group of 13 female musicians and singers playing traditional Mexican music. We are rehearsing and getting ready for festivals, weddings, and other events.”

Dinorah’s Band is made up of five local musicians: Sandy Baca, drums; Johnny Ramos, keyboard/lead guitar; Steve Davis, bass guitar; Eddie Diaz, percussion, and Dinorah, vocals and rhythm guitar. Their contemporary style is popular in clubs, at weddings and private events. The coming summer looks optimistic for smaller outdoor concerts. Under Dinorah Entertainment Productions, the Sacramento Mariachi Festival is scheduled for July 24th and 25th in Southside Park. Five bands will bring the magic of old Mexico to the city once again.

“In the best of times, the Sacramento area is difficult for performers,” she says. “The venues are few and the fight for recognition and work is ongoing.”

Fans may catch Dinorah playing solo in her driveway, in a coffee shop, on the big stage with her band, or in front of the mariachi horns… and they will be captivated by her performance each and every time.

“Musicians have thousands of dollars invested in equipment and rehearsal hours,” she said. “But we struggle to find a place to perform.” 530-383-4581   41

art} books

Reviews brought to you by the

T h e B a d M u s l i m D i sc o u nt

By: Syed M. Masood Book Reviews by Brendle Wells

An intriguing title and a beautiful cover will likely offer many browsers reason enough to pick up this book for further examination. Those who continue on to read will be well rewarded by the contents. This is a comic novel following the paths of two immigrants from their childhoods (in Pakistan and Iraq) through their meeting in San Francisco in 2016. Anvar has lived a relatively comfortable life with a loving family, but he is disillusioned with his legal career and his life as the specter of the 2016 election takes over the country. He’s not sure where he belongs and settles in a rundown SF apartment. Azza, a resident of the same complex, has had a much more difficult and dangerous path. She has endured the heartbreak of war, death, and abuse in her relatively short life. She’s trying to find her footing but restricted by circumstance and the men in her life. When they meet it sets forth a chain of events that will throw their community into turmoil. The situation here is serious, but the novel is rich with the absurdities of life and engaging side characters which liven the tone and propel the reader along. As one might expect from a Sacramento based author, the Northern California setting features descriptions which are absolutely pitch perfect, adding to the reader’s pleasure. This book would be an excellent choice for book groups and popular fiction readers of all interests. Doubleday Books 2021

The Liar’s Dictionary

By: Eley Williams

If you like words, then this is the book for you. Even if you don’t, there are still plenty of reasons to read this lively story. Set at Swansby House in London, home of Swansby’s New Encyclopedic Dictionary, the book features two alternating storylines. One is in the present day when the dictionary is being digitized, the other from the turn of the 20th century when the dictionary is being written. In the present day, Mallory the sole employee of editor in chief David Swansby, is given two alarming tasks: field daily threatening phone calls and find all of the mountweazels; made up words that have been snuck into the dictionary. How did those mountweazels get there? Peter Winceworth, a frustrated lexicographer, knows. His dislike of his colleagues (who I might add, are eminently dislikable) simmers along with his general dissatisfaction with life until one day it all boils over. The author makes full use of the dictionary in telling these two stories, choosing words and phrases that make the text glimmer with playfulness and illustrate moments of aching sincerity to perfection. Even more delightful are the mountweazels themselves which are both nonsensical and perfect all at the same time. A choice read for wordnerds, for literary fiction fans, and fans of quirky storytelling. The audio version is also a true joy for audiophiles. Doubleday Books 2020 42. - Spring 2021

art} books

The Lion of Mars

Author: Jennifer L. Holm Children's Book Reviews By Justin Azevedo Eleven-year-old Bell has spent his entire life in the American colony on Mars, and so it doesn’t feel especially strange to him that he not only doesn’t know anything about Earth, but anything about the colonies from other countries. Still, amidst his comfortable life of daily chores, caring grownups, the shifting loyalties of preteen life, and the company of the settlement’s cat, Leo, he can’t help but wonder: why aren’t they allowed to speak to people from the other colonies? What are the adults arguing about when they think the kids can’t hear them? When a potentially deadly virus suddenly strikes the colony, Bell and the other kids will have to find the answers to those questions on their own in order to help, and the successful resumption of contact with the other colonies places everything they’ve been told in a brand new light. But will the geopolitical realities back on Earth end a world of new friendships for Bell just as it begins? Holm’s middle-grade science fiction book is a fun, cozy read that is driven by themes of navigating friendships and is sprinkled with plenty of fascinating real-life science. The setting neatly provides a surprising amount of sci-fi worldbuilding without getting lost in the details; the characters immediately take center stage. Best of all, a story about colonizing Mars (and battling a rogue virus) is a perfect read for kids plugged into current events, without once feeling scary or overwhelming— the story manages to be both gentle and full of action and high stakes, a notable feat. An intriguing story about science and cooperation, recommended for ages 9 to 13. Random House Children’s Books, 2021 For details, telephone the Sacramento Public Library at (916) 264-2920 or visit

Lubaya’s Quiet Roar

Author: Marilyn Nelson Illustrator: Philemona Williamson Lubaya has always preferred the quietude of her own imagination to the tumult and noise that typically surrounds her. She usually sits quietly at the back of the classroom with her hand down, even when she knows the answer. At home, she is happy in her quiet space behind the couch while the rest of her family talks and laughs around the television. Her favorite pastime is drawing pictures of everything her mind can dream up, and often does so on the backs of old protest signs her family keeps around the house. When dreadful news on the TV indicates that it’s time to march once again, her family decides that her pictures make the signs even better, and Lubaya’s artwork is held aloft for everyone to see, giving her a chance to roar without saying a word. This singular picture book begins as an introspective, deeply poetic affirmation for introverted young readers, and those who have a predilection towards artistic endeavors. It ends on a powerful note about the importance (and, sadly, continued need) of protest, and the varied ways someone can lend their voice. The double-page artwork spreads are created with a mix of crayon and oil paint, offering impressionistic scenes of protest and family life that are accessible and link neatly with the depiction of Lubaya’s own illustrations. A lyrical, touching picture book that celebrates quiet children who have a lot to say, recommended for ages 4 to 8. Dial Books for Young Readers, 2020

community} happenings

The City of Elk Grove Arts Commission Presents

The Great Read Book Fair Story submissions are due August 1st. The Book Fair is Oct 9, 2021 at District 56 8230 Civic Center Drive

A day when imagination soars as authors, readers, and beginning writers come together. Short Story Contest Book Fair Writer’s Conference Children’s Hour Be part of the literary excitement as a participant or a browser. Choose a book to read, sell your novel, enter a short story contest, or learn writing skills.

Short Story Contest

First Place $200 Second Place $100 Fiction or non-fiction 2,000 words or less Story must take place in Elk Grove Manuscript must be in a PDF format Writers need a cover page with the title of the story, the author’s name, and contact information. No author’s name on story pages, just the title on each page.

Entry Rules

Open to all age 18 and over $10 entry fee (to be paid at manuscript submission). Fees must be submitted with applications and paid by credit card only. Deadline for submissions is August 1, 2021 at 5:00 PM. Entries will only be accepted electronically. No submissions will be accepted after Sunday, August 1, 2021 at 5:00 PM. Winners will be announced on Saturday, October 9, 2021 during the Great Read Book Fair located at District 56 (8230 Civic Center Drive, Elk Grove). Information on how to submit will be available on the website www.cityofelkgorve/artscommission.

Writer’s Conference

All day workshops with successful authors and agents. For information on the conference visit the Elk Grove Writer’s Guild website at

Author and Book Vendor

Vendors must bring their own tables, chairs, canopy (optional) No access to electricity. Spaces are assigned by EG Arts Commission. Outside booth space fee $25 (8x36, includes table and 2 chairs) 10x10 or limited to 5 inside booth space fee $50. Information on the website cityofelkgrove/artscommission. 44. - Spring 2021

community} happenings

Summer Events Are Back

McConnell Estates Winery Barn Nights Every Friday 6-9

Enjoy the warm summer evenings at McConnell Estates Winery's new barn venue! Kick back and relax with a glass of wine, listen to live music, visit our food truck (changes weekly), and play bocci ball or cornhole in our courtyard seating overlooking the vineyards.

Summer Concerts

June 12th, Journey Revisited, gates open up at 5:30. Tickets are $23 online, $25 at the door, and $20 for wine club members. July 10th, Bump City Reunion Band, gates open up at 5:30. Tickets are $23 online, $25 at the door, and $20 for wine club members.

Your reservation begins between 6 P.M. and 7 P.M. and will last until the event is over at 9 P.M. Visit our website to reserve your spot.

July 31st, Fleetwood Mask, gates open up at 5:30. Tickets are $35 online, and $30 for wine club members.

Please note that this event is exclusively 21+ and we do not allow outside food or folding chairs.

August 14th, The Boys of Summer, gates open up at 5:30. Tickets are $23 online, $25 at the door, and $20 for wine club members.


What I’ve Learned From

Students Returning to School By CT Morris - BS Elementary Ed., MS Ed.

It has been a year…a whole year since students have been in their classrooms. Last spring (all across the U.S.) schools closed their doors to teachers and students; remote classes became the new normal for all of us. The coronavirus pandemic sent parents, students and educators into a tailspin; we literally were thrown into uncharted territory. As an educator, I became an unwanted and reluctant observer of my students’ home life. I felt a need to apologize to the parents for my intrusion into their homes. It was truly a journey for all of us…but we have made great strides and we are moving toward a “new normal” classroom. The first day my students came to class, I was nervous…because, I wanted everything perfect for them. But, how were they going to behave in a classroom after being home for a year? They had become accustomed to snacking with their jammies on—as we did our remote class. Sitting at a desk and doing their school work with other students (in a classroom) was going to be totally alien to them. As my students started arriving at the school that I teach at, they were so excited…even though I couldn’t see their smiles (because of their masks) their eyes literally glowed. But, as I looked at their adorable faces I wondered what toll has the pandemic and its subsequent lock down had on this generation of children? 48. - Spring 2021

Even though Covid-19 is usually nonthreatening in children, the pandemic may still have lasting negative impacts on them. Because most childcare programs and schools were closed (with the exception of remote learning) children missed out on opportunities for development. They were isolated from their friends at school (even parks were closed down) which had an impact on the cognitive and social stimulation that children normally get outside their home. Let’s not forget another traumatic event that happened at the beginning of the pandemic, “shelter in place”. Added to the isolation from peers, children (in many cases) watched their parents struggle to pay rent or put food on the table. Even necessities were hard to find; remember the toilet paper shortage? Children observed all of this abnormal behavior happening all around them. Life experiences they could depend on—were skewed and didn’t match up to their previous experiences. These kinds of traumatic events, referred to as “adverse childhood experiences” can have long-term consequences. This is where I interject the word “resiliency” into the dialogue. Children who are resilient will bounce back even though they may have encountered adverse childhood experiences (such as the pandemic). We all

want our children to overcome hurdles and persist when they have problems. Resiliency is not something that children have or don’t have—it is an ability that they develop as they grow. Parents and educators can help children build resilience by teaching them to resolve problems independently. I know it is really hard not to jump in and help a child solve a problem they may have, but this actually weakens resilience. Experiencing problems helps a child learn to work through them…then they develop their own problem-solving skills. Another gift that we can give our children is to teach them to embrace their mistakes. This action helps encourage a growth mindset and gives our children a positive message, “mistakes help us learn”. It gives us the opportunity to talk about a mistake we may have made and how we recovered from it. As our communities open back up, it won’t be possible for children to avoid feeling stressed, but becoming resilient is one of the best ways they can cope. When children have the abilities (and the self-reliance) to work through their problems, they learn that they have what it takes to challenge difficult life experiences. They begin to internalize the message that they are tough and capable… “Resilient”.

education}  49

The Great Undoing By Anna Osborn, LMFT, Relationship Therapist and Coach

50. - Spring 2021


I don’t know about you, but it feels like my life has been pretty much dismantled over the last 14 months. From the way that I work, to the way that I parent, to the way that I show up with others. From how I cope, how I vent, and how I communicate. Pretty much all the things I used to do effortlessly were twisted up and tangled throughout the pandemic. And I don’t think it’s just me who has experienced a great undoing…at least I hope not. I’ve worked with so many couples this past year that have echoed their own version of feeling “come undone”. They’ve faced challenges they never knew (or wanted) to face. All the while courageously working their way through it. And as scary as dismantling and coming undone can be, it also allows for an opportunity. An opportunity to decide how you want to put it all back together. For about the year leading up to March of 2020, I was suffering from some major burn out. And I kept blaming it on my work. Although I love my job as a relationship therapist and coach, I’ve also been doing it since 2005 and I was beginning to question my longevity in the field. Based on my own blind spots, I was continually blaming my job for my emotional exhaustion and deep fatigue.

In fact, I’ve had countless conversations with couples this last year who have shared the new patterns they’ve been able to establish because of their own undoing. Patterns that serve their relationship far better than what they were doing before. In fact, I’ve had countless conversations with couples this last year who have shared the new patterns they’ve been able to establish because of their own undoing. Patterns that serve their relationship far better than what they were doing before. From evening walks to sit down dinners. From cooking together to working on household projects as a team. From being able to ask “How are you?” and genuinely being interested in the answer. All of these benefits have come because of this incredible undoing.

Little did I know, it wasn’t work that I was burnt out on…it was my life. I was overcommitted, stretched way too thin and completely stressed out. I was over volunteered, overscheduled and overwhelmed throughout most moments of the day. I was burning the candle at both ends as my Dad always likes to say.

And so when the world hit STOP last March, I was left to do some deep soul searching. What I discovered was everything I was doing, was not benefitting anyone…especially me. I was so deep into auto pilot that I hadn’t looked up—in a long while—to really survey the landscape of the pace I had created. And it was too much. I simply couldn’t do it this way anymore. And as I’ve discovered this last year…I wasn’t the only one.

Despite the pain of the dismantling…there’s a lot that needed to be reconfigured. Which I can now say I'm grateful for.

had on your heart and your relationship. Not because speaking it will make it disappear; but, instead so you can feel heard in what has been lost. I also think it’s important to speak into the gratitude and awakening that has occurred for you. What have you learned? What routines or habits do you want to safeguard and continue practicing? What do you want to hold close—because you see it in a valuable new light? I know for me, I am grateful that I was able to realize the ways I was creating an impossible standard within my own life. I’m grateful (mostly) for seeing how my frantic pace was impacting those that I love the most. And I’m truly grateful that (hopefully) I’m not alone in being able to feel both the blessing and the burden of walking through such a time of intense and sustained uncertainty. I encourage you to step back and see what has been dismantled for you over the past year. What were you robbed of? What was taken from you? And most importantly, what appeared in its place? How can you take the opportunity to let the beautiful rebuilding be more aligned with who you and your relationship are now—because you’ve walked through this together?

So what about you? What has been dismantled in your life? In your partnership? In your family? Has it all been bad...has some of it been a blessing? I think it’s really in how you look at it. I think it’s important to speak into the sadness of what has been lost. Of the impact that fear and distance has

I truly hope the inward look is as beneficial for you as it was for me. I’m here…cheering you on.

Anna Osborn, LMFT, is a relationship coach and therapist. You can reach out to her by calling 916.955.3200 or visiting her website at   51

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Find these products and more at Elk Grove Vitamins!

Stop by Elk Grove Vitamins to find out more about the these products and many others. We have a knowledgeable staff that can answer your questions and get you started on the path to health. As we’ve said before “Let’s Start the Talk.” Let’s get Elk Grove energized and healthy. Visit us at 9647 E. Stockton Blvd. Elk Grove or visit our 2nd location at 3342 Coach Lane, Cameron Park, CA.   53


The Keys to

Healthy Aging Written By Jessica Masocol, MD, Kaiser Permanente

Age. Is it a word? Is it a number? Or maybe it is a state of mind. Perhaps it is all three but differs from person to person. My favorite quote about aging is, “Age is just a number that changes depending on who’s asking.” To me, it’s more a matter of living your best life as you age. This can mean valuing quality of life over quantity particularly when we start thinking about end of life. But aging itself does not mean declining health and/or debility. I went into geriatric medicine because it truly exemplifies the concept of whole-person care. Each patient has a story, a diversity of experiences, a family, and their own individual symptoms and long-term goals that shape their decision-making. Some patient cases are complex. But I love being able to advocate for my patients and prioritize their needs to guide them to the best treatment options. May is Older Americans Month. Whether you are personally in this category or you are helping to care for someone who is, I want to take this opportunity to provide information that will help promote the keys to healthy aging and empower each person to cope with the changes that come with aging. Some of the most common issues as we age include a decrease in functionality and an increased need for assistance. This is often associated with falls and injuries, including broken bones. A sedentary lifestyle has been shown to increase chronic illness and early death. At some point, many older adults may need increasing assistance with activities of daily living which include dressing, toileting, hygiene, bathing, and feeding… as well as the ability to transfer (i.e. from bed to chair) and ambulate. This often requires the use of durable medical equipment, as well as caregivers, and may eventually necessitate placement in a skilled facility with trained caregivers. 56. - Spring 2021

The key to preventing functional decline is maintaining daily activity. Physical and occupational therapy can help with strategies or education and the recommended equipment to optimize injury prevention. Falls are among the top injuries treated in our trauma center at Kaiser Permanente in South Sacramento. We have several programs designed to help with fall prevention.

Older adults may face progressive medical issues. From heart disease to respiratory illness and diabetes, worsening co-morbidities are associated with poor quality of life, more medications, and increased hospitalizations. This contributes to both functional and cognitive decline. But there is good news. Improving one’s lifestyle early on can help to reverse some of these detrimental effects or, at the very least, slow down the progression. For example, it’s never too late to reap the benefits of tobacco cessation. Another possible issue is cognitive decline. It’s more than just forgetting things – it can also affect our ability to process information, hold attention, and use logic and

Kaiser Permanente Northern California saw a more than 3,000% increase in the use of video visits over the past year across all ages, ethnicities, and specialties of care. We’ve monitored patients through video visits, and it has been a great option for patients who are unable or uncomfortable to come in person. health}

Healthy Aging

reasoning. It impacts our capacity to make healthcare and financial decisions which has ramifications on our independence as well as our safety. Cognitive decline can progress to dementia and be associated with behavioral symptoms necessitating medication and facility placement if someone is not safe at home. The goal is to slow down the decline by keeping one stimulated with activities and socialization. Mental and emotional health are also very important as we look at healthy aging. Staying connected with others is huge in buffering against depression, loneliness, loss, and disability as well as helping us continue to find meaning and joy.

Something that may surprise people about their health as they get older is significant memory loss is not an inevitable part of aging. Older adults are just as capable of learning new things and thriving in new settings. Plus, they have the bonus of wisdom from life experiences. Let’s not forget the importance of routine checkups – staying up to date on vaccinations, cancer screenings, osteoporosis screening, and other assessments, depending on risk factors, all help to decrease further medical issues as we age.

The pandemic has changed the way some people visit their doctors and health care team. Our medical centers and doctors’ offices are safe places to receive care and we have encouraged our patients not to delay care, especially if it’s an emergency. In fact, Kaiser Permanente Northern California saw a more than 3,000% increase in the use of video visits over the past year across all ages, ethnicities, and specialties of care. We’ve monitored patients through video visits, and it has been a great option for patients who are unable or uncomfortable to come in person. Telehealth really affords a unique opportunity to see patients in their own environment – i.e. what barriers are present that may be limiting mobility, what does that pill box, or the inside of refrigerator look like etc. Often, I have found a patient’s report in the office may be masking the reality and challenges of his or her home situation. Physicians can gain a better understanding of a patient’s limitations which can guide treatment options and open consideration for additional resources.

I must say, “If you don’t use it, you lose it” at least five times day to different patients. Aging is inevitable but how we adapt to the changes that come with getting older and maintain a healthy lifestyle are key to aging well and slowing down the decline.

As a physician, it’s my goal to advocate on your behalf to offer all I can so that you can make the best treatment decision for you, which often may not be further aggressive treatment but rather a focus on optimizing comfort and quality of life.

Jessica Masocol, MD, has been with Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento since moving to the Sacramento area in 2019. Dr. Masocol currently works with patients in skilled nursing facilities, many who require rehabilitation following hospitalization. She and her husband have three children.   57


What is Intense Pulsed Light? By Dr. Dayle A. Imperato, Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine

What it does

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL), also known as a photofacial, is a type of light therapy used to address many skin concerns such as wrinkles, spots, rosacea, redness, and hyperpigmentation with virtually no downtime. IPL uses light energy to reverse the visible signs of aging from general environmental wear and tear. It can undo some of the visible damage caused by sun exposure, called photoaging. It improves the tone and texture of your skin and also can help stimulate collagen production reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. IPL may help reduce the appearance of red, brown or splotchy skin on your face, neck, hands or chest. IPL photofacials benefit your skin in two ways. First, these light treatments target your pigmentation problems such as age spots. The darker cells absorb the IPL energy and the melanin pigment fragments. The body then absorbs the pigment cells and the spots become less and less visible. With facial surface veins, the energy is absorbed by the dark blood, heating the vein. This heating causes the vein wall to collapse and close off the vein. The body then scavenges the vein and it completely disappears. 58. - Spring 2021

Second, the IPL energy penetrates the epidermis layer of the skin (the outer layer) and gently heats the dermis, the skin’s second layer. When the body senses this heating in the dermis it responds as if it has been wounded by producing new amounts of collagen and sending it to the “wounded” area. Since collagen provides the skin’s underlying support structure, this firms your skin and reduces lines and wrinkles.

IPL can be used to minimize or remove: • Age spots, AKA as Liver Spots • Sun damage • Freckles • Birthmarks • Spider Veins • Broken Blood Vessels • Rosacea • Fine Wrinkles • Hyperpigmentation • Decrease Pore Size

The difference between IPL and laser treatment

Lasers focus just one wavelength of light at your skin, while IPL releases light of many different wavelengths, like a photo flash. The light from IPL is more scattered and less focused than a laser. IPL penetrates down to the second layer of your skin (dermis) without harming the top layer (epidermis), so it causes less damage to your skin. Pigment cells in your skin absorb the light energy, which is converted into heat. The heat destroys the unwanted pigment to clear up freckles, age spots and sun damage. It can also destroy the hair follicle to prevent the hair from growing again. You can use IPL anywhere on your body, but it may not work as well on uneven areas. It isn’t recommended for people who tend to get thick, raised keloid scars or who have darker skin tones. It’s also not as effective on light-colored hair as it is on darker hair.


IPL uses light energy to reverse the visible signs of aging from general environmental wear and tear. It can undo some of the visible damage caused by sun exposure, called photoaging. IPL photofacials are not effective for darker skin tones or deeply tanned skin, as the IPL wavelengths cannot differentiate between the age spots/pigmentation problems and the rest of the darkened skin.

Who Shouldn’t Get IPL Treatment? Talk to your doctor first if you:

• Are pregnant • Have a skin condition • Take medication for other conditions

IPL isn’t a good idea if you:

• Are sensitive to light • Have recently tanned your skin using sunlight, tanning beds, or tanning creams • Might have skin cancer • Use a retinoid cream • Are very dark-skinned • Have a skin resurfacing disorder • Have severe scarring • Have keloid scar tissue

How to prepare

Before your IPL procedure, your skin care specialist will examine your skin and let you know what to expect. Let them know if you have any skin conditions that might affect healing after your treatment, such as inflammatory acne or eczema. For two weeks before treatment you should avoid direct sunlight, tanning beds, waxing, chemical peels, collagen injection, aspirin or ibuprofen, and RetinA

What to expect during the procedure

To start your IPL photofacial, we rub gel on your clean skin, and we give you a pair dark glasses to protect your eyes from the light rays. If you desire, we also can apply topical numbing cream to reduce the sensations of the treatment. We then place the IPL handpiece on the skin of the treatment area. The handpiece slides across the skin delivering light pulses. When the IPL device delivers the light pulse, you’ll feel a slight sting. Patients equate this with a small rubber band being plucked lightly against your skin. This process is repeated until

the entire face or other targeted area is completely covered. This typically takes between 20 and 30 minutes. To get the results you want, you may need to have three to six treatments. Those treatments should be spaced about one month apart to let your skin heal in between.

Possible risks

Most people experience mild redness or swelling after the procedure. This typically fades within a day or two.

In some cases, you may experience: • bruising • blistering • change in skin color • infection • hyperpigmentation

What to expect afterward

Intense Pulsed Light

How Long Will My Results from IPL Last?

The changes in your pigmentation problems and blood vessels are permanent. After the IPL energy breaks down the melanin in your sun spots and closes off those small surface blood vessels, your body removes them as waste products. Whether you develop more sun spots and broken surface blood vessels is dependent upon your sun exposure moving forward. More sun exposure will create more sun spots and areas of blotchy pigmentation. But if you take good care of your skin and protect it from the sun, your skin will continue to look good for the long term. Dayle A. Imperato, M.D. Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine (916) 670-7601 9180 Elk Grove Blvd, Elk Grove.

Spring Photofacial Rejuvenation Package Purchase a Package of Three (3) Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Facial Rejuvenation Treatments (4 weeks apart)

You should be able to go right back to your regular activities. The treated area of skin will be red and sensitive for a few hours, as if you got sunburned. Your skin may be slightly swollen, too. Your skin will continue to be sensitive for a couple of days after the procedure. You may need to avoid using hot water on it until your skin heals. You must avoid use of retinol products for 24 hours and avoid direct sunlight for several days. Following IPL therapy your skin is highly susceptible to sunburn or the formation of irregular, darkened pigmentation. Good sun protection is essential following treatment. If you are outdoors apply a minimum SPF 30 and wear sun protective clothing and headwear for a minimum of two weeks.

Plus a Lytera (The Pigment Correcting Serum)

Maintain hydration. Flaking and crusting may occur. Do not attempt to exfoliate or remove any crusting. Areas with heavy sun damage and brown spots will darken over the first 24 hrs. after treatment. Some of the red areas may intensify as well. Do not pick or abrade the area. This is part of the normal response to treatment and will clear on its own in 3-7 days. Drink plenty of non-alcoholic, caffeinefree and sodium-free beverages and keep skin well hydrated as directed.

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Fitness In Written by D’Lee Daleo & Jamie McCalman, Switch Fitness

What does fitness look like in 2021? We have survived over a year in a pandemic which has greatly affected pretty much every aspect of our lives. For many of us our daily routines over the past year look quite different than they did in 2019. Now that we seem to be slowly making our way back to some kind of normal, what does that look like? Health and fitness were big topics during the pandemic, and for good reason…they generally go hand in hand. You can improve your health by increasing your fitness and staying fit can help keep you healthy. But fitness can mean many different things. Most of the country has been “locked down” to some degree or another for most of the past year—meaning things like going to the gym or group classes for physical fitness wasn’t an option. Also, many people soon realized that not being able to see friends and family, go on vacation, or out to dinner and a movie, in addition to their kids having “Zoom School” at home… greatly affected their mental health and therefore, their fitness.

60. - Spring 2021

During the lockdowns, some people started walking, running, and/or biking. Some people turned to online classes or built up their home gym. However, some didn’t have the time, energy or desire to keep up a normal fitness routine while balancing life in pandemic. With so many changes to our daily routines, we have all had to adjust and make numerous changes.

just reminding them to move, eat, or drink. Given the popularity of these devises we can expect to see even more options and features in the future. Having so much information on your wrist or in an app has proven helpful in keeping people motivated and on track.

For some, they found more free time to focus on things they had previously neglected. For others the changes meant they had even less free time and had to decide which activities were not going to make the cut. So what have we learned? What will change in our approach and habits going forward? What do post-pandemic fitness trends look like? Only time will tell for sure, but we have a few things that we will carry with us on our journey back to normal. Wearable technology has quickly become the latest accessory. Apple watch, FitBit, Whoop, Garmin, smart clothing, smart shoes, and smart glasses have grown exponentially in popularity. These technologies can help you remember to stand up if you are sitting too long, track your heart rate, record your workout, calories burned, sleep patterns, recovery time, measure distance covered, remind you to breathe, track food and water intake, allow you to set goals…along with many more features. Having this info so readily available has been helpful for many people in reaching their goals, tracking their progress, or

We have learned that fitness can happen anywhere. While we typically think of gyms—when talking about fitness; this last year has shown us fitness can happen at a gym, at home, in a garage, outside, or online. There are many ways to squeeze activity into your day and many do not require tons of expensive equipment, time, or space. Sim-

Fitness is not just physical but mental and emotional as well. Little else in the last 20 years has brought to light the importance of mental and emotional health like Covid-19 has. ply walking can be an amazing form of exercise. Many people tried new workouts for the first during lockdowns because they were able to try it at home alone and didn’t have to worry about looking silly in front of other people. Trying a new exercise can be intimidating in front of other people, but between the comfort of being at home and having little else to do, many stepped outside of their fitness comfort zones. A quick lunchtime workout has been integrated into some people's routines. A quick yoga flow before bed or starting your day with meditation has been helpful for others. People are reporting that they intend on continuing their activity going forward, whether at home or heading back to gyms or studios. Seeing the benefits of exercise and movement has made it more of a priority for many people. Covid-19 has also made it clear how important our health is. When we are as healthy as possible, our bodies are much better equipped to fight off illness and disease. Fitness is not just physical but mental and emotional as well. Little else in the last 20 years has brought to light the importance of mental and emotional health like Covid-19 has. In light of this, many people have said they are bringing

the lunch break back. The idea of taking a working lunch is commonplace for many. We now have a greater understanding of how important downtime can be. Even just 30 minutes to really enjoy what you’re eating, decompress, read, or go for a walk, can change the tone of the rest of your day. The stress over the last year has shown what an impact mental and emotional health has on our well-being. The increase in people reaching out to mental health professionals (and more virtual options for people needing help) has skyrocketed. The connection between mental and emotional health and our physical health has become very apparent. Many people have said their mental and emotional health will remain a priority going forward. In addition to not giving up lunch breaks, reports show that taking more time off and more vacations are in many people’s plans as they gradually move back to normal. Taking time to reconnect with family and friends and time to just “unplug”, is making a comeback. Tying into mental and emotional is the mindbody connection. If there was ever a question as to whether or not there is a mind-body connection, this last year has answered with a loud,   61

The focus on all work, no play is an unhealthy way to live. Mental health should be a priority. Fitness can be many different things and can happen pretty much anywhere. health}


affirmative “YES”. People say they are more likely to seek out activities like yoga and Pilates, that help create the mind-body connection. Having so little external outlets forced many of us to turn inward and really brought to light how connected our thoughts are to our overall happiness and health. The mind is an amazing tool that can be of great use to us. Unfortunately, if left unchecked, it can also wreak havoc. Learning to control our mind, thoughts and breath are some of the most undervalued tools we have. There is an expectation that as more people start to leave their homes, they will seek out activities that develop a better mind-body connection.

HIIT (high intensity interval training) is expected to continue to grow in popularity. Over the last few years HIIT has risen in popularity and likely will continue to increase. The benefits of HIIT include the short amount of time needed for a good workout and also that many HIIT exercises can be done using just your body weight. Quick, effective, and with little to no equipment needed, HIIT workouts are easy to incorporate into busy schedules. As we start to head back to working onsite, getting kids to and from school again, and having the option to travel, these types of workouts can keep us active. While this past year has been filled with hardships for most of us, there are positive lessons we can take from it. The focus on all work, no play is an unhealthy way to live. Mental health should be a priority. Fitness can be many different things and can happen pretty much anywhere. Our overall health is determined not just by our physical size or shape, but also how happy (or stressed) we are. Finding a balance in life is critical in all areas; food, exercise, work, play, school, time alone vs. time with friends and family. We are given one chance to live our best life. It is so easy in the daily hustle and bustle to take things for granted, to assume there will be time later, to ignore the small signs our bodies give us, to put off a vacation or even a lunch break. Our health (physical, mental, and emotional) is so easy to take for granted until it's gone. Let’s make our return to normal be one where we make our health a priority.

Switch Fitness

(916) 883-BFIT 9632 Emerald Oak Dr. Suite K, Elk Grove   63


Our History of

Travel By Elizabeth Pinkerton Photos courtesy of Louis Silveira, Elk Grove Historical Society

We have a long history of travel, not only in the world, or in our nation and sate; but also right here in our City of Elk Grove! We still walk from place to place just as people have always done, but we have many other ways to get around as well.

Local physician's horse & buggy

Our Native American people, the Miwok families, were great walkers and they found their way along the Cosumnes River as they searched for food – acorns from our many oak trees and salmon from the River. They traveled all the way here from the Yosemite area, because they were great walkers! In addition to walking, our long ago travelers often hopped onto a horse to get from one place to another. And many people still ride horses today. People figured out how to hitch the horse to a wagon and that was more comfortable than being on the back of the horse. Next, we got the stage coaches and stage stops were built to provide services for the travelers.

We had stage stops here in Elk Grove, in Franklin, and in Sloughhouse. Travelers could get food and other necessities. They could exchange their horses for other ones and give them a rest, and they could even spend the night there. Some stage stops were called Seven Mile Houses as they were seven miles apart. After seven miles, the horses needed a rest! Wagon trains were assembled and people could travel long distances across the country, especially coming across the plains and many sates to California. The gold mining days of the late 1840s brought many people to our Cosumnes River and Sloughhouse areas, including many families. Sutter’s Fort in today’s Sacramento was the place you could get what you needed, and trails ex-

panded throughout Northern California. Jared Dixon Sheldon, one of our first settlers, built a wagon making place in what is now our town of Sheldon. The route from Sutter’s Fort to the Mexican capital of California (in Monterey) was called the Monterey Trail. When it flooded in the winter, travelers used a route on higher ground to the east. The trails were referred to as the Lower Monterey Trail and the Upper Monterey Trail. These are our Franklin Boulevard and Highway 99 of today. Both of these roads could tell us many stories about the travelers over the years! Traveling changed dramatically in 1868 when the first railroad came through what is now our City of Elk Grove. It was the Central Pacific Railroad, and it ran from Sacramento to Stockton. From those cities, the traveler could go anywhere in the United States. Our tiny town of Elk Grove at the stage stop began to move around the railroad tracks, and we even had our own railroad station there at the tracks!

Hundreds of families came by train for the great picnics in what is now Elk Grove Park, and they went by horse and wagon from the station to the Park. There was talk of creating a special line to the Park, but it never happened.

The trains still run through Old Town Elk Grove! But, they do not stop—as the station was closed in 1972. We just hear the trains rumbling along, and an occasional horn blowing when there is an animal or something on the track.

We had several other trains through our area. The Southern Pacific train came through the Franklin area and it still does, but it does not stop there anymore. The Central California Traction Line was an electric line that went from Sacramento to Sheldon and Wilton on its way to Stockton in 1910. This railroad was an amazing electric railroad that ran the 48 miles from Stockton to Sacramento. It opened up a vast region to agriculture and contributed

Top photo: Elk Grove Station - 1970. Bottom: Candycraft store located in the bottom of the Elm building in Old Town Elk Grove.

64. - Spring 2021



Elk Grove High School bus 1922

Ehrardt Ford Dealership

General Merchandise Store - Markofer & Latte

Elk Grove to Sacramento Shuttle Car

to the settlement of south Sacramento County. The freight service carried merchandise, livestock and produce, primarily grapes and strawberries.

The Traction Line also opened up a new source of danger for the parents who lived near that electric line. Long ago residents of the area who were children in those years remembered well the stern warnings of their parents to stay away from the dangerous tracks. That third rail carried electricity, and electricity was something new in their lives. Dared by schoolmates and pals though, or sometimes just curious to see if they could do it, they jumped across that wood-covered rail. Their parents usually did not know of their dangerous game, and it is probably well that they didn’t. To our knowledge, none hit the rail, for if they had they would have been electrocuted on the spot!

The doom of the electric train and its passenger service was signaled by ever-increasing popularity of the automobile and subsequent highway improvement. Originally the Central California Traction Company planned to run a line southward from Sacramento through rural farms and grape vineyards all the way to Modesto. It was anticipated that most of the San Joaquin and Sacramento County communities would be connected to the main tracks by branch lines. The first purchases (in 1905) were for electric cars, car motors, air brake equipment and track materials. Streetcar lines in Stockton opened in May 1907. In 1910, the railroad was completed to its terminus in Sacramento. By 1914, the electric line operated 36 daily passenger trains. The first cars were painted red (but later green became the popular color) and in the 1930s, yellow emerged as the official color. The wooden cars were attractive and equipped with both trolley poles and third rails. However, the doom of the electric train and its passenger service was signaled by ever-increasing popularity of the automobile and subsequent highway improvement. People just quit riding the train when they could get to their destination with a fancy new car, and they could follow their own timeline instead of having to go by the train schedule.

The Central California Traction Company finally gave up the battle after years of declining revenues. The last interurban passenger run was made on February 4, 1933. We have many wonderful railroad stories from long ago people who told us a lot about their experiences with the railroads in the Elk Grove area. You can read many of these stories in my book, History Happened Here, Book 2 – Fields, Farms, Schools.

Henry Eehardt & George Rhoads Garage - Ford dealer

Cars were next, but not until the 1920s. What used to be trails for us to walk on became streets for the cars. That is still our main transportation method today, and families often have two or three cars! We also have buses to take us to Sacramento and other places, and we have school buses that take students to school from their homes.   65


Automobile agencies developed all over, and people could purchase cars (new ones or used ones) and the car companies had workers who could work on the cars. Our two most well-known car agencies in Elk Grove were Bob Batey Chevrolet and Frank Cate Ford. Today, we even have our own auto Mall, and we can get a huge variety of cars – whatever we like and want.

It did not take long in past years for people to use bicycles to get from one place to another, and later, motorcycles became popular. Both are much used today by young people and older ones as well. Airplanes have been with us for a long time and although we still do not have our own airport, we have residents who learned how to fly and they set up their own landing and take-off strips. One early person in our airplane history is Dr. Gus Windmiller who lived in the area of what are now Waterman and Grant Line roads. He called his landing and take- off place the Sacramento Sky Ranch.

fly airplanes, and he also had his own airport in Wilton. He was a longtime educator with the Elk Grove Unified School District and left us in 2014. Many Elk Grove residents who learned to fly, took lessons from Mr. Winter. He logged over 10,000 hours of flight instruction time in our local communities. We have many forms of transportation today— including cab service. We could just call the cab company, and they would send someone out to pick you up. You paid for the cab, but it was well worth the price. Today we do the same with services such as Uber and Lyft.

Here is a special travel story about two U. S Presidents who traveled through Elk Grove – one by horse and one by train. Ronald Reagan rode through Elk Grove on a horse (during a Western Festival parade in 1966) when he was running for governor of California. President Warren Harding died in San Francisco in 1923, and his body was taken to Washington DC on a train that came through Elk Grove.

Doc Windmiller, as people knew him, flew in and around Elk Grove, and many residents remember his flights. He even flew backwards. One story tells us that on a strong north wind day when it was really blowing, Doc took his plane up and while heading into the wind and thereby keeping up air speed, he managed to fly his plane backward across Elk Grove. Many thanks for Hans Feickert for the memories of Doc Windmiller, our first pilot!

Howard Winter was well known to many Elk Grove people because he taught people how to

Above photos from left to right: Batey Bros car dealership and garage. Sunset Airport on Grantline. Sky Ranch Airport on the NW corner of Stockton and Florin.

66. - Spring 2021

Ronald Reagan at the Western Festival in 1966.


Airplanes have been with us for a long time and although we still do not have our own airport, we have residents who learned how to fly and they set up their own landing and take-off strips.

BOOKS By ELIZABETH PINKERTON History Happened Here, Book 1 – River, Oaks, Gold Book 2 – Fields, Farms, Schools We the People, a Story of Internment in America

All book proceeds go for student scholarships, and I thank the many purchasers who have made possible the 80 scholarships with each one $1,000. Five more will be awarded in 2021 to seniors at Elk Grove high schools. To purchase books, make your check for books payable to Laguna Publishers and send to me at 9227 Lamprey Drive, Elk Grove CA 95624. Books are $20 apiece and California sales tax is included. Add $3 for shipping of one book; $5 for 2-3 books. Call me at 916-685-0606 or email me at

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