Bicycle Enthusiasts Love Benicia:
Bridge Access, Popular Trails & Scenic Beauty
Form & Function Come into Balance in a Remodeled Live-work Space POSTAL CUSTOMER ***** ECR WSS ***** Volume 7 Issue 7 May 2012
Please Deliver 5/2-5/4
Downtown Benicia Gets a Brand-new Statement-making Plaza
ECRWSS PRSRT STD US POSTAGE PAID PORTLAND OR PERMIT NO. 2160
Voted #1 Flooring Company in Solano County
BENICIA FLOOR COMPANY
Mâ€“F 10 to 5:30 l Sat. 10 to 3 or by appointment 84 Solano Square in Safeway Shopping Center, Benicia www.beniciafloorcompany.com
Large Showroom with Excellent Selection On-Time Installations Competitive Pricing Professional Reliable Hardwood Laminate Carpet Tile
Committed to Excellence in Customer Service
A fresh mix of fun
Farmer’s Market – Every Thursday, 4-8pm
Fresh fruits and veggies, baked goods, gourmet food, delicious hot food, fresh cut flowers and more! Located at First Street between “B” and “D” Streets.
Ghost Walk – Every First & Third Fridays, 8pm
Discover paranormal history of downtown Benicia on this fun, interactive tour led by a paranormal investigator and/or sensitive. Reservations required: 707.745.9791 (no children under 10)
Wine Walk – Saturday, June 9th, 2-5pm
Stroll First Street and taste regional and other fine wines being poured inside downtown shops! Tickets: $20 advanced, $25 door (21 years of age and over only) Tickets available at Benicia Main Street, 90 First Street or online at BeniciaMainStreet.org
For more info visit BeniciaMainStreet.org • Benicia Main Street, 90 First Street, 707.745.9791
She found her soul paint, Purple Energy 5056. Find yours. Choose from the harmonious color palette of the new Clark+Kensington™ paint+primer in one exclusively at Ace. Scan this QR code to see more.
Locally Owned and Operated
Pedrotti Ace Hardware 830 Southampton Road Benicia, CA 94510 707.745.NUTS (6887)
beautiful, remodeled showroom everything under one roof
Quality, Service, Selection Contractor’s License #864853
736 First Street, Benicia, CA 94510
707.745.8337 • Beniciahomeimp.com
COWs of the Bay Area:
Container on Wheels Benicia • Napa • Sacramento • Mountain View
Garage full? Closets jammed? Patio packed? In between moves? We’re the COWs folks and we bring the storage to you! 8-foot & 16 foot COWS: Safe, convenient, affordable storage solutions. Only pay for the time you use! Daily, weekly or monthly rates available.
Call today for a free quote!
4 • Benicia Magazine
COWs of the Bay Area 707.745.1150 • 925.372.8015 • 866-GET-A-COW www.866-get-a-cow.com
I LOV E FA S H I O N
“ Try on” Temptation!
Try on any item & receive 10% off your purchase. This Tempting Offer is good May 1 – Sept.1, 2012
Right: Christina’s mom, Ma
Fashion Destination ChristinaSBenicia.com
Facebook.com – Christina S Benicia Open Every Day • 370 First Street, Downtown Benicia
BeniciaMagazine.com • 5
Benicia Magazine MAY VOLUME 7 ISSUE 7
26 Photo, left, by Lisa Duncan Photos middle & right, Jerry Bowles
Features Industrial chic amps up productivity in a home office
18 More than the sum of it's parts: Downtown Benicia's new "entry statement" 26 Intertidal habitats being restored at Cullinan Ranch
Departments 10 From the Editor 12
Currents Veterans get a welcome home parade BMS students show passion for after school Guitar Club The San Francisco Sinfonietta celebrates Arts Benicia
Challenging trails, meandering paths & an active bike club make Benicia a great place to ride
20 What's on the web
Hats off to hats and Mom!
Refresh skin & relieve tension with a pampering facial
Retired Historical Museum Curator Harry Wassmann
30 Looking Back
Doña Benicia, Benicia's "Mom"
22 Just for Kids
33 Live Music Calendar
Show mom your appreciation with Mother’s Day gifts she’ll love
6 • Benicia Magazine
Featured musician Jeff Campitelli
34 May Events
MID CIT Y
NURSERY For All Of Your Landscape Needs
Sailor Jacks Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Join us for
Mother’s Day Brunch Sunday, May 13
Large variety of flowers, plants and trees Decorative pots & garden accessories Master Nursery products Indoor plants and quality garden tools
any purchase of $50 or more With this coupon • Expires 5/31/12
3635 Highway 29, Vallejo
THE BEST PLACE AROUND FOR LIVE MUSIC
Purchase one lunch or dinner entrée in May & receive one complimentary dessert with this ad* *expires 5/31/12. One discount per person, no cash value. Cannot be combined with any other offer.
Sailor Jacks • Open Every Day • 123 First Street 707.746.8500
City of Benicia
art 5/4 Go Kart Moz o ay M de o 5/5 Cinc Coffeehouse – Bar – Ultra Lounge Block Party son's "The Voice" Headlined by this sea yer Band! M contestant Whitney
Tournaments M 5/11 Accoustic S& 2nd & 4th Wilders Band 5/12 The Honey Sundays n 5/18 Local Optio 5/19 Political Plum Cinco De Mayo at 5/25 Dead Cat H All day live music! 5/26 Crown Pointty) Randy's Restaurant, (CD Release Par outside, corner of First & H Streets May 5, 1-8pm
Call for weekend bottle service and VIP room availability 707.746.1137 • 726 First Street, Benicia For the events schedule, please check our website
The following trees are PROTECTED by the City — — — —
City property trees over 8" in diameter Street trees over 8" in diameter Heritage trees Designated protected trees (trees on property for new construction) — All other trees over 12" in diameter; fruit trees 18" in diameter — California native trees with a trunk diameter of 8" (25" circumference)
Download removal or pruning permits at www.ci.benicia.ca.us Parks & Community Services, or call 707.746.4285
BeniciaMagazine.com • 7
Bremen Health Clinic West
Beauty from th e Ins ide O u t Botox • Dermal Fillers • OBAGI Skin Care Oxygen facials • Laser Therapies Medical Grade • CEDSA
(Computer Electro Dermal Stress Analysis)
• Homeopathic/Herbal supplements • Detox /Wellness Programs (for balance and well being) • M’lis Detox body wraps • Detox Foot baths • CHI Machine • NEW •
Natually occuring protein hormone medically supervised weight loss program
707. 745. 3040 560 First Street Suite C105 Benicia CA 94510 PielMedSpa.com
Capitol Glass Co., Inc. Serving Solano County since 1970
in Showers, Windows and Mirrors $
7 windows & a patio door
Free in-home estimates • Lifetime warranty including glass breakage Lower your utility bill by installing energy efficient windows Voted Best Glass Company in Solano County
5000 East Second Street, Ste. H, Benicia www.capitolglassbenicia.com License # 855587
8 • Benicia Magazine
Celebrating our 8th Year Editor Jeanne Steinmann
Benicia Graphic Design Margaret Bowles
Web Specialist Yarrow Sweningsen
Special Projects/Advertising Coordinator Joey Baker
Benicia Contributing Writers Elizabeth D' Huart Rhonda Lucile Hicks Beth Steinmann Christina Strawbridge Sue Sumner-Moore
Contributing Photographers Lisa Duncan, Jerry Bowles Photography Editorial deadlines The 1st of the month prior to the issue month
Advertising sales 707.853.5226 firstname.lastname@example.org Advertising deadlines New ads: the 5th of the month prior to the issue month Ad changes: the 1st of the month prior to the issue month
Contact Us 707.853.5226, Beniciamagazine.com email@example.com Administration Office Manager Rise Goebel Copy Editor/proofreader Beth Steinmann Benicia Magazine is published monthly by Polygon Publishing, LLC Copyright © 2012, all rights reserved. Contents of Benicia Magazine cannot be reproduced in whole or in part without the written consent of the publisher. Opinions expressed in Benicia Magazine editorial or advertisements are those of the authors and advertisers, and may not reflect the opinion of Benicia Magazine’s management or publisher. Subscriptions $18.00 per year. Benicia Magazine, P.O. Box 296, Benicia, CA 94510. 707.853.5226, beniciamagazine.com.
What makes a printing process Green? Our printer incorporates many green practices far beyond state and federal guidelines. Sustainability in the pressroom includes: — Vegetable & soy inks — 100% paper waste recycled — Energy positive emissions systems — A plate-making system that virtually eliminates all chemicals
At NorthBay’s Center for Women’s Health, we believe in making healthcare a more comfortable, respectful experience, one that’s tailored especially for your life.
In-office Green Practices We walk, bike or drive a hybrid vehicle to get to work and around town. Paper waste is either recycled or cut up and reused as scrap paper. Envelopes and other business supplies are reused.
That means care with women’s schedules, bodies and aesthetics in mind. Our physicians are passionate about women’s healthcare and are in tune with your needs. Call 707.646.4100 or visit NorthBay.org to learn more.
Electronic devices are turned off at night and we use fluorescent light bulbs.
Dr. Andrew Lin, Ob-Gyn Dr. Robin Price, Family Practice Dr. Sarah Smith, Ob-Gyn Dr. Madhavi Vemulapalli, Ob-Gyn Dr. Teresa Whitley, Internal Medicine
BeniciaMagazine.com • 9
Photo by Lisa Duncan
From the Editor Pottery Barn, that arbiter of American style, has named a furniture collection after us. In their spring catalog they have dubbed a new furniture style “The Solano.” Does this mean we have made it? Been discovered? Do we have that certain something? Or did they just like the sound of our name? At first I thought PB might be referencing something else, but there’s also a collection called “The Sonoma.” So not only did the international retailer name their furniture after our humble county, it was chosen along with our renowned wine-loving neighbor to the north. Are we hip now, too? Or did the PB “namers” catch our story in the March issue about Solano’s finer features and decide right there in the conference room that we merited a collection of our very own? These musings made for a highly entertaining, rainy April afternoon. I’ve seen ample evidence the past year to be convinced that Benicia and Solano County are poised to take their rightful place on the greater Bay Area stage. People are catching on to our history, art and culture and heaps of natural beauty. What will it be that puts us over the top? Will it be a new spirit of collaboration between cultural organizations? Restoration of county wetlands? Tourism? Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point, digs deeper to find the real reasons behind what causes a trend to spread rapidly. There are obvious reasons for increasing interest in our area, but Gladwell’s method might reveal insights that would surprise us. Who knows—perhaps even Pottery Barn, tastemaker that they are, will unwittingly push us closer to the tipping point. Speaking of our county, on page 26 we take a look at the Cullinan Ranch marsh, one of Solano County’s important waterways along Highway 37. It’s undergoing restoration to improve the overall health of the wetlands, which also impacts the Carquinez Strait and San Pablo and San Francisco Bays. Why is this important to us? Because these wetlands are part of the larger ecosystem that includes our waterfront. Finally, hats off to mom this month. In Looking Back, we offer tribute to Doña Benicia, Benicia's "mom," and be sure to check out our May guide to the perfect Mother’s Day gift. This issue is chock full of interesting tidbits as we continue to bring readers cutting-edge design and insightful articles, written by professionals like Sue Sumner-Moore. In addition to being part of the organizing team who helped build the Playground of Dreams in City Park twenty years ago, Sue recently sat down with Harry Wassmann, a Benicia icon, for this month’s interview.
Jeanne Steinmann Send your comments, suggestions and ideas to: firstname.lastname@example.org www.beniciamagazine.com
Editor: I just wanted to congratulate you and your staff for putting out such a great magazine that just keeps getting better with each issue. And thank you too for promoting our Sustainable Benicia: Energy Symposia! I really appreciate it. —Constance Beutel
10 • Benicia Magazine
OFFERING: Botox® Juvaderm® Restylane® Chemical Peels Sclerotherapy
Exceptional Legal and Mediation Services Now with 8 attorneys to serve you
Emily Thomas, M.D.
We offer personalized Aesthetic Medicine services that enhance your sense of well-being in an ethical, professional and relaxing environment.
Excellence in Aesthetic Medicine 321 First Street Suite 103 Benicia, CA 94510 www.lighttouchmedspa.com
Call to schedule a FREE consultation
Serving the community for over 60 years
Family Owned and Operated for over 60 years
Wills • Trusts • Estate Planning Personal Injury • Criminal Defense Family Law & Mediation • Real Estate Consumer Law • Business Law • Probate
Gizzi & Reep, LLP 940 Adams Suite A
Sky Valley Financial plus (we get you home) Advanced Mortgage Service (your antidote to mortgage stress) Alan Schwartzman Branch Manager
NMLS #238622/1850, CA DRE #00681649
Mitchell Chernock Sales Manager
Local & Long Distance Moving — — — — —
Office & Residential Relocations Military & Government Relocations Packing & Crating Modular Furniture Installations Commercial Distribution & Storage
Record Management & Document Destruction — Self Storage Container Services - Door to Door — NAID Certified Shredding Services
METROPOLITAN VAN & STORAGE
5400 Industrial Way, Benicia, CA. 94510 800.824.0549 • Call today for a Free Estimate!
NMLS #236204/1850, CA DRE #00583404
Advanced Mortgage SVF A branch
American Pacific Mortgage Corp. NMLS #1850 CA DRE# 01215943
• Purchase/Reﬁnance • Conventional, FHA, VA, 203 K Rehab • Reverse Mortgages for Seniors • Native American Home Loans
615 First Street Benicia, CA 94510
707-746-4920 707-746-8140 Fax • www.advancedmtg.com
BeniciaMagazine.com • 11
Veterans Get A Hero’s Welcome with a Benicia-style Parade
Benicia’s 749th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion of the California Army National Guard returned home after a year-long tour in Adder, Iraq last November. Benicia recognized their homecoming the best way we know how: with a parade. The deployment was part of “Operation New Dawn,” the transition mission that marked the end of “Operation Iraqi Freedom” and U.S. combat operations in Iraq. Members of the Benicia Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion and the VFW Ladies Auxiliary spearheaded the parade that was originally planned for March. An issue with liability insurance suspended their plans temporarily until local business owner
Rob Storelee stepped in to troubleshoot and finance the necessary coverage for the event. Once the coverage was secure, Benicia’s Parks and Recreation and police departments assisted in expediting the necessary permits and volunteer requirements to put on the event. Valero Benicia Refinery helped provide funding for a luncheon for the Veterans. The Benicia Middle and High School marching bands paid tribute to California’s heroes as Benicians lined First Street to usher our troops home. In addition to honoring the 749th CSSB, the parade also paid tribute to veterans for their service in the Korean and other wars. B
Benicia Middle School
Passion, Perseverance, Patience
12 • Benicia Magazine Currents
The Benicia Middle School Guitar Club began eighteen years ago after Keith Jordan, the BUSD psychologist at the time, secured a grant to implement an after school program for at-risk students. His schedule prohibited him from actually teaching the class so he asked Mr. Garcia (P.E. & musician) and Mr. Calderwood (woodshop) to direct the students. Mr. Garcia and Mr. Calderwood ran the program for sixteen years and have since passed the torch to Mr. Rodgers (sixth grade science) and Mr. Frederick (woodshop) who are in their third year of supervising the program. The Guitar Club is open to all eighth grade students. During the first week of September eighth graders are invited to attend the Guitar Club meeting. Attendance at the first meeting has been as high as two hundred and as few as fifty. At this initial meeting, students learn what it will take to become a part of the Guitar Club and eventually make a guitar. As Mr. Rodgers explains, it takes patience and perseverance to take a block of wood and turn it into a guitar in five months. Only the very passionate will see it through to completion, so the “Wanto-Meter” was developed to find those eighth graders who have the passion. This year 50 students attended the first meeting. Those who make the commitment are allowed to miss only two Fridays during the semester. Miss a third and you forfeit your membership. The 2012 Guitar Club currently has fifteen passionate members. “I feel very blessed to be continuing the tradition of this club here at BMS. As a sixth grade teacher I seldom interact with the eighth graders, and I get a chance to interact with students who share the passion. I always leave guitar club in a better mood than when I start, and I’ve started each session this year feeling fantastic,” says Mr. Rogers. Most of these students have never used a power tool, and for many, this is the last chance for woodshop experience. The club goes beyond just making a guitar—the kids who participate learn one of life’s most important lessons: great things take great effort. In this world of immediate gratification, these students spend five months turning a block of wood into their own highly personal, unique creation. B
THE SAN FRANCISCO SINFONIETTA
Celebrates Arts Benicia’s 25th Anniversary with Benefit Concert
Photo courtesy of the San Francisco Sinfonietta
Mozart’s Requiem is coming to Benicia. This is a rare chance to see a full orchestra and chorus performing great music right here in town. The concert, also including Schubert’s “Unfinished” Symphony, is a benefit for Arts Benicia—a gift from the San Francisco Sinfonietta on the occasion of Arts Benicia's 25th Anniversary. Arts Benicia will use the opportunity to take time to remember friends and family who are no longer with us. The Requiem will be performed in Benicia’s historic Clock Tower. The community can remember lost loved ones and friends by having their names included in the program. If you would like to honor someone in this way, you can contact Arts Benicia. Mozart's Requiem is arguably one of the most stirring pieces of music ever written. It was the last piece of music Mozart ever composed, and its history is shrouded in mystery and conjecture. Mozart was apparently aware that this would be his last work, and asked that it be performed at his funeral. Many of you will be familiar with it as the powerful music from the end of the film Amadeus. The San Francisco Sinfonietta is directed by its charismatic conductor, Maestro Urs Steiner. Urs is internationally renowned as a conductor, guitarist, educator and composer. He is revered in San Francisco for his annual New Year’s Eve performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the “Ode to Joy,” and his annual singalong version of Handel’s Messiah. He and his wife are also members of Arts Benicia and support its mission to “stimulate, educate and nurture cultural life in Benicia.” Though this is a benefit concert for Arts Benicia, the Sinfonietta still has to cover its costs and the overhead is high. Arts Benicia is seeking significant sponsorship to make this a financial success. Private donors, Benicia Magazine and Vino Paladini have already stepped forward. Benicia Magazine will advertise the event, and Vino Paladini will serve its favorite gourmet hors d'oeuvres at the reception following the event, included in the ticket price. Please contact Arts Benicia to purchase tickets, for more information about the concert and sponsorship opportunities, or to remember a loved one in the program. What: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Requiem Mass in D Minor and Franz Schubert's Symphony No. 8 in B Minor, performed by the San Francisco Sinfonietta, with a cash bar wine reception following to benefit Arts Benicia. Where: The event will be held at the Clock Tower, 1189 Washington Street, Benicia, June 3 at 4pm. For tickets and information: www. artsbenicia.org or 707.747.0131. See also www.sfsinfonietta.org. B
FREE DRAWING ON SAT. JUNE 16 Infineon Raceway Tickets NASCAR in Sonoma
Events: Sat or Sun, June 23-24, Infineon Raceway Name__________________________________ Street__________________________________ City____________________State___ ZIP_____ Phone (___)__________Cell (___)___________ Complete entry and drop off at Dolan’s in Benicia. No purchase necessary. One entry per person. Must be 18 or older. Need not be present to win.
4563 E. Second St., Benicia 94510 / 707-746-1780 / MON - SAT Also in Concord, Pinole, Walnut Creek & Burlingame. Sign up for news and information at www.DolanLumber.com
BeniciaMagazine.com • 13
Amps up Productivity and Enjoyment in a Home Ofﬁce
Photos page 6, left, and pages 15 & 16 by Lisa Duncan
In most offices, aesthetics play second fiddle to function, and this busy live-work space was no exception. Pam Hughes, of Pam Hughes Design, was called upon to create a warm but industrial feel to a home office with three large bays. Hughes saw potential in the soaring ceilings and interesting architectural features. Solid design principals and an eye for whimsy allowed her to infuse the space with style and bring form and function into balance. The angled walls, large windows and insufficient lighting and storage had to be considered. Hughes’ design plan included bringing in lots of storage and unifying the space with one all-over paint color. Cord-hung pendant task lighting replaced ceiling can lights, and a second desk and large credenza made of recycled lumber and iron were brought in. Window coverings, wall art and large area rugs soften the look and add warmth, with bright orange and yellow accents for pops of color. The leaf pattern on the drapes brings the outside in, along with a large Fiddle Leaf Fig and two small succulent gardens. Who says you can’t mix business with pleasure?
14 • Benicia Magazine
pendant task lighting
replaced ceiling can lights
Paint: Benjamin Moore White Sand, acehardware.com. Stressless leather chairs & footstools, rustic storage cabinets, iron & recycled lumber credenza and desk, sisal rugs, orange leather recycle & refuse bins: ironhorsehome.com. Cowhide & storage Baskets: worldmarket.com. Wall Sconces and globe: potterbarn.com . Borneo side table: ballarddesigns.com. Yellow carpet tiles: flor.com. Drapes: Ikea.com. Fiddle Leaf Fig & succulents: midcitynursery.com. B
BeniciaMagazine.com â€˘ 15
Biking to work... May is National Bike Month
...or for Pleasure, Gains Momentum in May
Benicia Bike to Work Day is May 10 Recent bike statistics are hard to come by. But the trend is clear—between 1972 and 2007, bike sales and commuting by bike were growing. According to bikeleague.org, in 1972 bike sales in the U.S. outnumbered auto sales by two million. The latest data from 2007 estimates that the total number of bikes sold in the U.S. was 18.5 million (bicycleretailer. com). The estimated total number of autos (cars, trucks & SUV’s) sold in the U.S. in 2007 was 16.2 million (ask.com), so bike sales outnumbered auto sales in 2007 by 2.3 million. May is National Bike Month, and Benicia is a great place to celebrate with a ride. There’s something for everyone: varied terrain, a bridge-to-bridge loop and scenic, meandering paths. The Benicia Bike Club, over 100 members strong, has weekly rides where groups form to accommodate different paces (beniciabikeclub.org). The club welcomes all road riders to join them. Cycling momentum increases this month with activities across the United States. Our local Bike to Work Day is May 10, National Bike to School Day is May 9 and National Bike to Work Week is May 14-18. Join the thousands of people across the Bay by biking to work or for pleasure. And regardless of your destination, keep these rules in mind, from bikeleague.org, while sharing the road:
1. Follow the law.
Obey traffic signals & stop signs. Ride in the direction of traffic.
2. Be predictable.
Make your intentions clear to motorists and other road users.
3. Be conspicuous.
Ride where drivers can see you; wear bright clothing. Use a front white light & red rear light and reflectors at night or when visibility is poor.
4. Think ahead.
Anticipate what drivers, pedestrians, and other bicyclists will do next. Watch for turning vehicles and ride outside the door zone of parked cars.
5. Ride Ready.
Wear a helmet. Ensure tires have sufficient air, brakes are working, chain runs smoothly & quick release wheel levers are closed. Carry repair and emergency supplies appropriate for your ride.
6. Keep your cool.
Road rage benefits no one and always makes a bad situation worse. B
6 TOP CITIES WITH THE MOST MILES OF BIKE PATHS AND BIKE LANES • bikeleague.org RANK
BIKE LANE AND PATH Miles per 100K population
BIKE LANE MILES
BIKE PATH MILES
(includes shared -use and bike only paths)
BIKE LANE MILES PLUS BIKE PATH MILES
New York, NY
San Diego, CA
16 • Benicia Magazine Fitness
Lerner Eye Center
End Your Frustration with Reading Glasses The Benicia Historical Museum is proud to present
GIRL SCOUTS - 100 YEARS An Exhibit Celebrating The Girl Scouts of America’s Centennial Available at our gift shop “First Girl Scout” a Biography of Juliette Gordon Low, Founder of The Girl Scouts by Ginger Wadsworth 2060 Camel Rd. • Benicia • 707-745-5435 w w w.b enicia his to r ic almus eum. org
Call today for a complimentary consultation
Arsenal Crafts Fair Antiques—Collectibles—Pottery—Crafts
CK (Conductive Keratoplasty) is a 3-minute office procedure to help improve your near vision.
Noninvasive, painless & safe (no laser cutting)
Sunday, May 6, 10am-5pm Fun • Food •Drinks • Art Bring the whole family! FREE ADMISSION Self-tour artist live-work studios Benicia Annual Open Studios at the Arsenal Info: 707.746.0100
Benicia Historic Arsenal 940 Tyler Street Military East to Polk Street and Tyler Street
“Dr. Lerner is a phenomenal surgeon, and the choice of other doctors.”
Dr. Eric Mariotti, Plastic Surgeon, Concord
Concord I Pittsburg I San Ramon
www.lernereyecenter.com Zero Interest Financing Available
if booked before May 31, 2012
HILARY JON LERNER, M.D. Eye Physician & Surgeon
Dr. Lerner is one of the few doctors performing CK in the East Bay.
BeniciaMagazine.com • 17
A Statement-Making Project Coming to Downtown Benicia tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend , or social behavior
crosses a threshold, tips, and
spreads like wildfire.”
—Malcolm Gladwell, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
Exisiting intersection of Military and First Streets
Renderings by Community Design + Architecture
with tree-lined medians 18 • Benicia Magazine
After several years of planning and design, a new project is coming to Downtown Benicia that will change the face of upper First Street. Although many adjectives have been used to describe our lovely downtown—historic, quaint, vibrant, beautiful—the intersection at First and Military could benefit from a little love. Back in the 1990’s, upper First Street was enhanced by the Playground of Dreams in City Park (1992), new library (1993) and the redesigned Fire Department (1998). More recently, the Safeway shopping center and the Veteran’s Hall received major upgrades. But the connecting intersection at First and Military, the hub of all this loveliness, is still just ho-hum. It doesn’t serve to unify the park or public buildings, and it isn’t bike or pedestrian friendly. The Intermodal Facilities Project (IFP), scheduled for construction this month, is about to change that and then some with a statement-making plaza. In 1996, the requirement for an “entry statement” to Downtown Benicia was written into the general plan. Funds were identified and a public process, not without controversy, ensued. The project, funded by a $3 million grant from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, includes two regional bus stops for a new route between the Vallejo Ferry Building and Pleasant Hill Bart. When completed in August, the IFP improvements will also create “people places” and provide a sense of arrival to Downtown Benicia. Bump-outs, tree-lined medians, a lighting overhaul and large crosswalks with attractive pavers for pedestrians and cyclists are a major part of the design. Military West, from First Street to West Second Street, will see the elimination of a traffic lane in each direction, and street lighting will be replaced by the more appealing “Benicia Blue” lamp posts. Likening the new plaza to the front door of a building, Mayor Patterson feels that the project will define the entry to downtown. “You start with a plan, identify funding sources, work together to build relationships and stay focused on the outcome,” she says. Identifying the “front door” will entice more people to visit downtown and increase foot traffic. Perhaps this particular outcome will cross the threshold that allows Downtown Benicia to reach the tipping point.
Above: Playground of Dreams 1992 Below: Playground of Dreams 2012
Photo, top right, playground build, by Scott Sumner-Moore. Middle & below right, playground maintenance, staff photos. Library & Vet's hall photos by Jerry Bowles B
BeniciaMagazine.com • 19
Amy Carpenter AKBD Kitchen & Bath Specialist
Love Mom Bouet
Designing Spaces that Inspire
In-home consulution Personalized service Custom design Competitive pricing Evening appointments available AmyCarpenterInteriorDesign.com Amy@AmyCarpenterInteriorDesign.net 877.748.1310 Mention this ad for $500 off Cabinet Order Some restrictions may apply, Exp. 5/31/12
838 First Street Benicia, CA 94510
Benicia Floral & Gifts 707.745.5838 • www.beniciafloral.com
Beniciamagazine.com What’s Going On?
Find out daily at BeniciaMagazine.com Hundreds of listings in our ongoing, interactive calendars
Weekly and monthly roundup calendars
Bay Area Live Music
Lake Tahoe Calendar
Art Exhibits, Events & Classes
Wine Country Calendar
Real Estate Events, Classes & Seminars
CONTESTS • BLOGS • COMPREHENSIVE BUSINESS DIRECTORY 20 • Benicia Magazine
Alonzo and Small
Orthodontics for Children and Adults
Your one-stop insurance shop since 1981 Home, Auto, Motorcycle, Boat & Business Policies
Dr. Tom Campbell Board Certified Orthodontist
Call to schedule a complimentary exam 707.745.1994 • 164 East H St., Benicia beniciaparadocs.com
1440 Military W. #202, Benicia
The first to use the most environmentally safe/friendly cleaning process.
ry 4th pair of pant s Eve
(Dry clean & pressed)
Come visit our Com ddesigner showrooms
81 Solano Square, Benicia • 707-745-1353
2310 “D” “ Bates Ave.
(Next to Pizza Pirate) Free delivery & pickup • We honor competitors’ coupons
Concor Concord (near HWY 4) also in Santa Clara Mon - Fri 7 - 5 and Sat 9 - 2 & Milbrae 925-798-7525 925
• No waiting to drop off • All work done on premises • Best shirt laundering in town • No Perchloroethylene
STAINS: If we can’t get them out, they won’t come out!
New Classes Added! Private Instruction Trigger Point Therapy Thai Yoga Massage 707.246.2331 • MarleensYoga@gmail.com • www.MarleensYoga.net
DRE # 00674738
GET COMFORTABLE IN YOUR BODY
ESTEY Since 1946
Real Estate Sales & Professional Property Management Customer Service, Professional Knowledge, Integrity Here for you since 1946, call us today.
935 First Street, Benicia • www.esteyrealestate.com
If you need cash
2nd Chance Thrift Store Furniture, Collectibles & Household items 11am-6pm, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat 929 First Street, Benicia, 707.745.6276 Adobe is a clean and sober men’s residential program solely supported by Thrift Shop sales and Labor Services. Thrift store purchases help men rebuild their lives.
for Mother’s Day Vallejo Coin Exchange pays the most for your gold! Vallejo Coin Exchange • 127 Tennessee, Vallejo 707.554.1754 VallejoCoin.com BeniciaMagazine.com • 21
Just for Kids 5/5 4th Annual Lynch Canyon Kite Festival 11am-4pm
5/11 Teens Casa Buena: A Multicultural Event 4-6pm
5/19-20 Walnut Creek Model Railroad Open House 11am-6pm
5/12 Pre-Moth-ers Day at the Bohart Museum 1-4pm
5/26-9/3 Tony Hawk—Rad Science 10am-5pm
All you need to bring are your kites and kids Kids of all ages and ability levels are welcome Lynch Road & McGary Road, Vallejo Solanolandtrust.org 707.432.0150
Treats from all over the world, belly dancing & music Doña Benicia Room, 150 East L Street Benicialibrary.org 707.746.4343
More than seven million insect specimens A live “petting zoo” – Treat mom to this exhibit 1124 Academic Surge, UC Davis campus Bohart.ucdavis.edu 530.752.0493
5/18-20 Alice in Wonderland, Friday & Sat. 7pm
Saturday & Sunday 1pm Matinee Following the White Rabbit can be tricky! Come experience the adventure Vacaville Ballet Theatre, 813 Davis Street Vacavilleballet.com 707.469.4013
Come “ride” the Diablo Valley Lines One of the largest HO scale model railroads in the US Walnut Creek Model Railroad, 2751 Buena Vista Ave. Wcmrs.org 925.937.1888
Explore the physics behind sports like skateboarding, BMX biking, and snowboarding. Lawrence Hall of Science, 1 Centennial Drive Berkeley Lawrencehallofscience.org 510.642.5132
BENICIA UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
Carnegie Hall Royal Conservatory The Achievement Program
Reserve space now for summer lessons!
Marian Fiore Smock
Pianist • Instructor • 707.745.1850
CONVERSATIONAL CLASSES — Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced Adults — Small groups or individual sessions — C’est facile et amusant!
Reserve your seat: email@example.com
707.644.3421 22 • Benicia Magazine Just for Kids
Preparing Students for the Future
BUSD offers the programs and services necessary for students to pursue and achieve their long-term academic goals.
BHS graduates are attending: — UC’s, CSU’s & community colleges — Public & private colleges & universities nationwide — Ivy League schools BHS & Liberty High students were awarded over $1 million dollars in scholarships last year.
350 East K Street, Benicia, CA 707.747.8300 • www.beniciauniﬁed.org
This Mother’s Day with Gifts She’ll Love!
9. 6. Photos by Lisa Duncan
1. Reusable “I heart Benicia” shopping tote bag, $3. Benicia Main Street, 90 First St., beniciamainstreet.org. 707.745.9791. 2. Crabtree & Evelyn avocado, olive & basil skin cleanser, bath & shower gel and body lotion gift set, $20. Steve’s Hallmark, 844 Southampton Rd, steveshallmark.com. 707.745.5421. 3. Rustic wooden birdhouse, $31, and ceramic bird, $8. Romancing the Home, 617 First St., Benicia-rth.com. 707.747.1717. 4. Glass frame by J. Devlin, $41.95, additional sizes available. Benicia Bay Company, 714 First St., beniciabay.com. 707.745.8232. 5. SandBaggers women’s golf shoes, $125, additional colors available. MC2 Golf Pro, Inc., 960 Grant St., mc2golfpro.com. 707.745.6075. 6. Tea Forté Coconut Tea collection & tea bag holder, $16.75 & $3.50; shortbread cookie, $1.00. Studio 41, 700 First St., studio41.com. 707.745.0254. 7. Big Buddha deep turquoise handbag, $87, other colors, sizes & styles available. Christina S, 370 First St., christinasbenicia.com. 707.745.5125. 8. Midnight Blossom mini-vase hand-blown art glass, 6.5” tall, $145, silk scarf, $45. Lindsay Art Glass, 109 East F St., lindsayartglass.com. 707.748.1336. 9. 12” x 12” glass fusion plate, create your own for $89, additional sizes available. Artcentric, 733 First St., artcentricbenicia.com. 707.745.9553. B BeniciaMagazine.com • 23
To the LIT Ars AR ena YW l ES T
FIR ST ST RE
310 Military West 946 F Tyler Street 940 Tyler Street 118 West K Street 1036 First Street 935 First Street 929 First Street 838 First Street 832 First Street 828 First Street 827 First Street 736 First Street 726 First Street 700 First Street 640 First Street 611 First Street 109 East F Street 601 First Street 513 First Street 513 First Street 159 East D St., Ste. A 370 First Street 321 First Street 309 First Street 252 First Street 123 First Street 90 First Street
FIR ST ST R
A. Judith Judson B. Consignment Arsenal C. Weddings at the Arsenal 1. Tosch Dental 2. A Lago Salon 3. Estey Real Estate 4. Adobe 2nd Chance Thrift Store 5. Benicia Floral & Gifts 6. First Impressions Salon 7. Camellia Tea Room 8. Wellness Wisdom 9. Benicia Home Improvement 10. The Rellik Tavern 11. Studio 41 12. Sandovals Restaurant 13. Little Bird 14. Lindsay Art Glass 15. Benicia Chamber of Commerce 16. Hamann Real Estate 16. Joan Shepard 17. Dudikoff Insurance 18. Christina S Fashion Destination 19. Light Touch Medical Spa 20. Be Chic Boutique 21. Yan Spa & Massage 22. Sailor Jacks Restaurant 23. Benicia Main Street
24 â€˘ Benicia Magazine
Be Ca nicia pit ol
9 10 EA
19 EA ST DS 20 18 T.
adorable & affordable games, gadgets & gifts for bellies, babies & big kids
707.745.9300, 707.558.9000 Office 707.246.6567 Cell 513 First Street, Benicia hamannrealestate.com
REALTOR/OWNER, 25 years experience
611 First Street, Benicia, CA 94510 707.747.5400 • littlebirdbenicia.com
Real Estate doesn’t have to be this painful!
1036 First Street Benicia, CA 94510 707.745.1450
Residential & New Home Sales; Property Management 707.745.0759 www.judsonandcompany.com
A Bumble and bumble Exclusive Salon
Joan Shepard, Realtor 513 First Street, Benicia 707.747.9300 Office 707.567.3901 Cell www.joanshepard.com
Mexican Food 640 First Street • 707.746.7830
Christie Finn | Realtor DRE# 01876823 Coldwell Banker Solano Pacific 900 First Street | Benicia Ph: 707.853.9787 | Fax: 707.746.1337 firstname.lastname@example.org www.LiveBenicia.com
FIRST IMPRESSIONS HAIR SALON AND SPA
832 First Street • 707.747.6910
Dudikoff Insurance Agency
Planning, Products, & Services
Pre-owned, new & antique furniture 946F Tyler Street, Benicia • 707.746.0100 Open Daily 12-5pm
Honesty, Integrity, Experience. “Your Realtor for Life!”
George Dudikoff, Agent, Lic. #OB13442 159 East D Street, Suite A, Benicia • P: 707.746.7395 • F: 707.747.6814
Benicia Golf Association
Wedding and Event Space Blacksmith Gallery at the Arsenal
940 Tyler Street, Benicia 707.373.5371 or 707.746.0100
To find out more call Dale Thorne, 707.745.4852 or Charles Kibby, 707.746.6054
Plumbing and Boilers Residential & Commercial Locally owned and operated
Full-line pet store Professional dog & cat grooming Do it yourself pet wash Anesthesia-free teeth cleaning clinic – first Sunday of each month
1202 East 5th Street, Benicia 707.745.5016 • www.FeathererPet.com
discount with this ad
Earthquake-proof your home to prevent gas leaks/floods! Slab leaks, repipes Water heaters, faucets Toilets, garbage disposals Remodels, gas lines & more Free Estimates No overtime charges for nights or weekends Lic. #944357 Insured & bonded
707.333.5992 • Up2Codeplumbingandboilers.com BeniciaMagazine.com • 25
The Cullinan Ranch
Restoration Project in Progress
among the Bay Area’s complex system
of waterways affords it beautiful views and
By Beth Steinmann The scenery along Highway 37 is alluring in a desolate, understated way, with a view of both Mt. Diablo and Mt. Tam on clear days. A quick drive-by may reveal the occasional heron or bird of prey in the interlacing marshes and waterways, but without a closer look, the environment appears rather sparse. Appearance—in this case—is very deceiving. These marshlands are home to numerous ducks, shorebirds—including the endangered California Clapper Rail—raptors, shrews and mice, and several species unique to the area. This sensitive eco-system also acts as an important filter for dirt and pollution, maintaining water quality in our bays. Cullinan Ranch is the first vegetated tidal marsh adjacent to the San Pablo Bay. It comprises 1,500 acres and is bound by Highway 37 on the south and Duchman’s Slough on the north. The ranch has been slated for restoration since 1991, when it was purchased by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. To understand the necessity for restoration, a snapshot of local history provides context. The marshes and estuaries connecting to the San Pablo and San Francisco Bays are part of a 3,000-year-old network that once comprised over 200,000 acres. In the early days of the Spanish occupation, cattle were set out to graze on this land for most of the year, which is subject to seasonal water inundation due to high tide. Ranchers and farmers leveed and pumped the marsh in 26 • Benicia Magazine
Photo by Jerry Bowles
the 1850’s to allow year-round grazing and crop production. After the land was blocked from seasonal water flow and subject to compaction by grazing cattle, it began to subside and is currently 6-9 feet below sea level. Part of the the restoration goal is to raise the elevation. Cullinan Ranch was primarily used for oat hay farming into the 1980’s, when it almost became a housing development called Egret Bay. Shifting public attitudes and awareness in the last fifty years began creating pressure for marshland development projects. After denial of the Egret Bay project the land was purchased by the USFWS. Restoration funding is an entirely different animal, and it took about twenty years to acquire enough resources to start the project. Highway 37 also adds a difficult twist to this particular project. If the levee were breached without prior preparation, the road would flood. So, phase one includes a setback levee along 2.6 miles of the highway, with additional construction of acceleration and deceleration lanes. The largess of the Cullinan Ranch project begins to hit home with a breakdown of its short and long-term goals. 26,000 feet of the northern levee will be lowered to allow for immediate creation of forty acres of intertidal habitat. In addition, breach locations have been selected along historic slough channels that will restore connection to adjacent waterways, but it’s projected to take at least
sixty years for this aspect to reach its full effect. The projected breach date is January 2013. This should be an exciting event, as avian life will flock to feast on the influx of tidal invertebrates. It will jumpstart the return to a balanced ecosystem and create an inviting environment for the California clapper rail and dozens of other sensitive and endangered species, like the salt marsh harvest mouse, San Pablo song sparrow and Suisun shrew, and eleven species of fish that travel through San Pablo Bay to reach their spawning grounds. Other aspects—such as the complete regeneration of natural vegetation—will take some time. Although ninety-two percent of the area’s marshes were destroyed between 1850 and 1930, some of the land surrounding Cullinan has already been restored, including adjacent salt ponds formerly owned by Cargill Salt Company. Benicia is flanked by wetlands on two sides. Restoration to Martinez wetlands was started in 1992 after a 1988 oil spill. In Suisun, a levee was breached at Little Honker Bay in 2006, creating seventy acres of wetland. Benicia’s location among the Bay Area’s complex system of waterways affords it beautiful views and peaceful charm. If my great-grandparents had travelled here, they might have seen our marshlands in their pristine natural state, and if my grandchildren stay here, they may live to see it fully restored. B
Benicia Plumbing, Inc. Residential and Commercial
“People taking care of people...”
Over 35 Years of Excellence! Repair or Replace | Water - Gas - Sewer Garbage Disposal | Drain Cleaning Water Heaters Video Camera | Slab Leaks | Free Estimates
24 Hours - Seven Days a Week | www.beniciaplumbing.com
CA Lic. #329632
Summer at SPSV…
Summer Camp & Intensive 2012 July 30 - August 10
Reserve your space now! Y
www.ligiosoballet.com 412 Military East, Benicia • 707.310.0928
Visit our large showroom of Fireplaces, Stoves, Inserts & BBQ’s
Something for Everyone K-12 Sports Camps • Summer School Academic & Artistic Camps
Check our website for details! St. Patrick-St.Vincent High School 1500 Benicia Road, Vallejo, CA 94591 email@example.com
www.SPSV.org • 707.644.4425 x443
Benicia Magazine Congratulates and sends best wishes for future endeavors to
Adding Warmth and Beauty to Your Home For Over 30 Years
www.calcomfort.com 4680 East 2nd St., Benicia
Michael’s Steam Carpet Care Quality carpet, area rugs & upholstery cleaning
Proudly, Benicia owned and operated
Call for a free estimate • Se Habla Español
Specializing in carpet repairs, re-stretching, spot dying, and tile & grout cleaning Benicia: 707.747.1664 • Walnut Creek: 925.890.0300 BeniciaMagazine.com • 27
Hats off to Hats and Mom! By Christina Strawbridge As with any accessory, the hat has been worn as a fashion statement and for functional reasons— warmth, safety and religious requirements—throughout the ages. It has represented different cultures and professions with head coverings dating back from men and women depicted in ancient tombs to the current fashion icon Lady Gaga. Wearing a hat can be about attitude and style. Many notable historical figures are recognized not only for their moment of fame, but also for what they wore on their heads. Napoleon is identified with the long, horned-shape felt hat called a Bicorne, which lent balance to his diminutive size. A century later, Abraham Lincoln's stovetop-style hat made the tall President even taller, in addition to being a good hiding place for his speeches and documents. Jacqueline Kennedy popularized the pillbox hat in the early 1960's, after which the hat trend took a hiatus. Could it be that the emphasis switched to hair, with innovation in styling and color that finally "did in" the chapeau? Princess Catherine of Cambridge (Kate Middleton) has resurrected the interest in wearing a hat or fascinator with a younger generation of fashionistas in 2012. Both men and women in their 20's and 30's are wearing hats for fun and style. Currently, hat enthusiasts can find berets, boaters, beanies, aviators, baseball caps, bowlers, cloches, fedoras, headbands, Panamas, cowboy/Stetsons, and top hats. My experience with hats started as a child, as women were required to wear hats to church, until suddenly in 1962 the trend stopped—but I didn't. My millinery collection has grown through the years with a closest full of hats from around the world, including eight from Paris designer Marie Merci. My mother was a significant influence in the art of wearing hats. I have photos of her wearing them in the 1940's to dinner and for business. The styles from that era were both sophisticated and whimsical, with the use of veiling and unusual findings. Today Mom continues to wear hats, with a cream-colored, billed, knit cap as her go-to accessory to wear to Church or around town. At 88, she still knows how to pull off the attitude to make a statement with a hat. In mid-June the Benicia Historical Museum will feature a hat exhibit entitled “The Way We Were– Lady’s Hats 1890 -1965.” The exhibit will also include support materials: items of clothing on mannequins, handbags, gloves, hankies and more. The majority of the hats will be from the 1940’s and 1950’s, from the collection of the late Georgia Wagner, former Benicia resident—her collection was over 40 strong! B
Photos by Lisa Duncan
The Rejuvinating Power of a Good Facial By Beth Steinmann The skin is the largest organ in the human body. We think of it as solid—after all it holds in our blood and guts—but it breaths and is permeable. Everything that we put on our skin gets absorbed into our bodies through the lymph system, which is one reason why I’ve long been a proponent of natural beauty products. Eating a healthy diet and taking care of your skin will keep it lustrous, clear and toned. The face requires special attention. Over time the effects of the sun’s rays and makeup or toxic facial care products can stress this sensitive part of the body. I liken face care to hair care. Hair that’s washed regularly with good shampoo and conditioner, and cut regularly, stays strong and healthy. Following a daily face care regimen and getting monthly facials will allow the skin to breathe and thrive. A good daily face care routine is three-tiered. A natural, gentle, exfoliating cleanser is the first step. You can give yourself a minimassage by using two fingers to rub the cleanser in circular motions around the face. This increases blood flow and opens up the pores. Next, an alcohol-free toner should be applied liberally to the face and neck. I believe hydrosols—also called floral waters—make the very best toners. Hydrosols are created during the essential oil distillation process, and are a fusion of water and the flower’s volatile oils. Rose hydrosol is good for dry, sensitive or mature skin; rosemary 28 • Benicia Magazine Fashionista & Wellness
for oily or congested skin; chamomile for sensitive and combination skin; and lavender works with all skin types. The final step is the application of moisturizer. I prefer a light facial serum. Oils such as apricot kernel, almond and jojoba are actually nourishing for the skin. Cream-based moisturizers work well also if they have healthy ingredients. Moisturizer should be applied to the face and neck in circular motions while the skin is still moist with toner. Items to avoid in your skincare products include parabens, phenoxyethanol, sodium laurel sulfates, ethylhexylglycerin, BHTs and BHAs. A good rule of thumb is: if you can’t pronounce it, question it! Facials add to the quality of healthy skin by removing toxins and dead skin cells, improving circulation and increasing blood flow, and toning and tightening the skin. They also help release tension in the face, head and neck, providing a relaxing, pampering experience. Gentlemen, never underestimate the rejuvenative power of pampering for your ladies. When us women pamper ourselves, we have more energy to contribute to helping others. This is my notso-subtle hint for Mother’s day. Treat your special lady (mom, sister, girlfriend, wife) to a facial and you’ll receive benefits too. And ladies, if the men in your life are curious, encourage them to try one also. Benicia has many skin spas with professionals ready to give you the royal treatment and radiant glow. They may also have tips about daily skincare and which ingredients to avoid and embrace. B
with a Relaxing Salon or Spa Treatment for Mother’s Day
Benicia's premier family hair salon no appt necessary
PS Hair Studio Let us create your signature look
75 Solano Square (next to Pizza Pirate) Benicia
Bombshell Hair and Ink Hair & Tattoo Studio
638 ½ First Street, Benicia
120 East G Street, Benicia
Wellness Wisdom Spirit • Body • Mind
Holistic Spa & Wellness Center 827 First Street, Benicia
a Lily of Gold Day Spa
Benicia’s Studio One Styles that make you look fabulous every day
A Lily of Gold Day Spa Pampering with results
273 East H Street, Benicia
2006 Columbus Parkway, Benicia
Promotion BeniciaMagazine.com • 29
Harry Wassmann By Sue Sumner-Moore
Photo courtesy of Benicia Historical Museum
When Harry Wassmann was growing up in Benicia, tulle reeds grew where Rancho Benicia now stands. He borrowed books from the library, which was in the state capitol building along with other city offices. The building’s second floor had a stage and dance floor, and Harry once saw a sword exhibition there. His first job was carrying coal into the telephone company office on East G Street “to keep the girls warm as they asked, ‘Number, please.’ ” He graduated from Benicia High School in 1939, when the school occupied the current City Hall. Now 93, Harry saw the town adjust as thousands came to work at the
Why did you work so much to establish a museum here?
Because no one seemed to know the Benicia story. Benicia participated strongly in the early days of the state, but we did not have somewhere that told our story. … So many dedicated people who cared and knew about Benicia’s past worked on this. I told the Council back then that with each day that passes, we’re losing our historic heritage—artifacts and papers that tell about Benicia’s role. The artifacts were getting scattered. They weren’t in one place. So people would drive into Benicia and they’d have to go to City Hall and ask where the prisoners of war were taken during World War II. Where’s the capitol? Where was the shipyard? We needed a central place to exhibit our artifacts and tell the story, and that’s why we worked to get a museum.
So where were POWS kept during World War II?
The buildings are gone now, except for the hospital, which they used as a chapel. It’s now offices in the Industrial Park.
Benicia Arsenal during World War II and again as people left when the Arsenal closed in 1964. “The Benicia Arsenal was prominent in my lifetime,” he says. He initiated the move to resume annual Memorial Day services at the local military cemetery after the Arsenal closed. He considers the Southampton area of town to be “not that old” and doesn’t regret the changes he’s seen over the years. “We love Benicia just as much as ever,” he says, a warm smile on his face. “There’s something about this town—the people are friendly,” adds his wife, Diane. The couple live in the house where Harry was born in 1919 and where they raised their two children. He retired in 1985 from Travis Air Force Base after 37 years as a transportation specialist. Harry is passionate about researching and preserving local history, and he and Diane are frequently resources for Benicia history publications. Harry has devoted the past 40 years to the Benicia Historical Society and Benicia Historical Museum. He helped found both organizations and retired as museum curator in 2006. “The museum has taken up a lot of time over the years, and happily so,” he says. “Before that, Benicia Historical Society occupied my time, and it’s all been a pleasure.”
The Italian POWs were allowed to go downtown because they were jovial—well, not all of them were allowed to go. In general, the Germans were not allowed to go. Most people don’t know we had Italian and German POWs here during the war. One day a man came to Benicia and he went to City Hall and asked if they could tell him where the POWs were kept. They didn’t know what he was talking about and told him there were no POWs here during the war. But he kept insisting, so they finally called me. He’d been an Italian prisoner here. We got together and we showed him where the camp had been. He admitted that they had a good time here. … His son, who worked for Chevron, ended up living here for a time and he and his wife were museum volunteers.
When did you become interested in local history?
I’ve always been interested in history. I’ve always gathered things I found that I thought were interesting and of historical value. We have a basement full of some of these things.
Mother’s Day Muse: Doña Francisca Benicia
Photo courtesy of Benicia Historical Museum
By Elizabeth D’Haurt Mothers of Benicia…do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by shopping, cooking, cleaning, school scheduling, homework support, driving detail to and from sports practices and matches, dental and doctors’ appointments, and all of the other duties and responsibilities attendant to the care and feeding of your little darlings? Even with help from a spouse or partner, it is sometimes difficult to feel that you are doing the best job you can as a mother 100% of the time. Consider Doña Francisca Benicia, (18151891), after whom our town is named—and you may feel inspired about your own maternal role and tasks at hand. Married at the tender age of seventeen to General Don Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, Francisca Benicia bore sixteen children, six of whom died before the age of six. In spite of the heartbreak she must have endured, she succeeded in creating a series of well-appointed homes for her family throughout their
30 • Benicia Magazine Interview & Looking Back
What do you remember about Benicia during the Depression?
I know there were a lot of people without jobs, but it didn’t affect our family. My mother, brother and I didn’t suffer thanks to my father (a butcher). My mother had a track on people who did need help and she’d take them clothing. We did have a WPA (Works Progress Administration) camp here. Camp Benicia was out by Lake Herman. There were allmale barracks out there. They’re gone now. They didn’t do any art projects here, but they may have cut down thistles or done some road work locally.
What did you and your friends do for fun when you were growing up?
We had all kinds of things to do, like One Foot Off the Gutter and Kick the Wicket. Some of the fellas went duck hunting. They had their own boats and they’d go out. We went swimming in the bay, at the end of West G Street. There was a nice arrangement there with bath houses and a somewhat sandy beach.
A Great Hair Style
Beats A New Outfit Hands-down Call today for a style that makes you look fabulous every day! Visit
Benicia's Studio One
707.373.7256 • 273 East H Street, Benicia
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I used to think I’d like to be a farmer. My grandmother had turkeys and I had chickens. When I graduated from eighth grade, I wanted chicks and I got them. But that’s not an easy life and I’m glad I never got into it. I did like gardening and growing things.
Open to the Public & to the Trade Interior Design Showroom • Commercial & Residential
What projects are you working on now?
I’m clearing out the basement, which includes so many papers that I’ve got to share with the museum. All kinds of papers—rough drafts and final products, photographs, newspaper clippings. I still visit the museum and help when I’m called.
What are your hopes for the museum in the future?
I think it’s progressing very well as it is. Elizabeth d’Huart (executive director of the museum) is doing a good job—we need that kind of expertise. I appreciate what they’re doing now, I really do. I hope they carry on as they are doing now. B
many moves, with an emphasis on classical education and the arts; especially music. She was part of the local landscape of the time, recording her observations in the many letters she wrote during her fifty-eight years of happily married life; during which time California moved from frontier territory to statehood. Her last home in Sonoma, built in 1851 and open to the public as a State Park and decorated with period appropriate furnishings, is still an example of a well-ordered domicile, both comfortable and pleasing to the eye. The journals and diaries of the period are dotted with descriptions of this strong and sensitive woman, who helped to forge and define an era. Described by one of her sons, Platon, as “… what we would call a level-headed woman,” she is a role model for mothers today, as B well as being the “Mother of Benicia.”
946 Tyler Street, Suite E, Benicia
707.747.4762 • lerevedesigns.com
Jewelry, Home, Baby, Chocolate & More Open Every Day 700 First St. Benicia, CA 94510
BeniciaMagazine.com • 31
Photo courtesy of Rhonda Lucile Hicks
Jeff Campitelli, Drummer Born: Dec 29, 1960, Fullerton, CA Resides in: Benicia Favorite Food: My dad’s pasta and my wife’s short ribs over polenta Favorite Book: Anything by Kurt Vonnegut Favorite Song: Now that’s impossible…way too many good ones out there. Relationship Status/Children: Married to Christy Campitelli. One daughter named Gabby.
By Rhonda Lucile Hicks
You’re well known for being Joe Satriani’s drummer, what music do you listen to that might surprise us? Believe it or not I love John Prine, Neil Young, Nick Lowe…acoustic guitar and witty, well-crafted lyrics and oddly enough…not a lot of drumming.
You were only 16 years old when you played your first professional gig at the Cow Palace and a senior in high school when you formed a band with Joe Satriani. Have you always worked as a rock drummer? Did you ever have to wait tables? I’ve been very fortunate to always be able to make a living playing music but believe me I’ve paid some dues. In the early days I played hundreds and hundreds of not so glamorous gigs. To get good at something you have to work hard…practice, practice, practice!
You’ve toured the world, how did you end up in Benicia?
We tour in over 40 countries and as much as I like hanging out in big cities I really like coming home to Benicia. We were looking for a small town to settle down in…walking my dog along the water, helping out with softball, volunteering to help the school band and VOENA. It has a real community feel and it’s a great place to raise kids.
32 • Benicia Magazine Listening
What was your best moment on stage? A show we did in London and Mick Jagger was watching us from the side of the stage. Rolling Stone magazine lists you as the 50th greatest drummer of all time, but what impresses your daughter?
I don’t believe polls. There are way too many great musicians to choose from to make a “greatest” list. I think my daughter is more impressed with my ability to help with math homework!
Can you tell us about your work with VOENA? I’m having a blast working with the kids in VOENA. I have a small group of them in a special program called Voices of Rhythm where we are working on all kinds of percussion ideas to add to the show. Jeff Campitelli will be performing with Peppino D’Agostino in a benefit concert for VOENA on Sunday, May 20 at 7pm at Uptown Theatre in Napa. For more information on this all ages show visit uptowntheatrenapa.com. B
Scan for more listings
Blown Glass, Wall Art, Jewelry, Gift Items
Ongoing Live Music: The Rellik Tavern Live music every Friday & Saturday night therelliktavern.com 707.746.1137 Upstairs at the Café Live music Thursday, Friday & Saturday night Jazz Sunday afternoon firststreetcafe.com 707.745.1400 Sardine Can, Vallejo Live jazz every Sunday 5pm-8pm sardinecan.net 707.553.9492 The Empress Theatre, Vallejo Live music and movie every Friday night empresstheatre.org 707-552-2400 Sticky Rice Chinese Bistro & Bar Fairfield Live Music every Saturday night stickyricebistro.com 707.863.7500 Winterhawk Winery, Fairfield Live Music and dancing every Saturday, 2pm-5pm winterhawkwinery.com 707.428.6977 Favela’s Fusion, Fairfield Live Mariachi music the first Friday of the month favelasfusion.com 707.421.8484
Special Events: Shelby Lynn Bankhead Theatre, Livermore Tuesday, May 1, 7:30pm mylvpac.com
707.748.1336 • www.lindsayartglass.com Keiko Matsui Yoshi’s, San Francisco Wednesday May 9 and Thursday, May 10 yoshis.com The Laurie Morvan Band Silo’s, Napa Saturday, May 12, 8pm silosnapa.com VOENA: Voices of Life Empress Theatre, Vallejo Saturday, May 12, 4pm empresstheatre.org Underground Sound Stagewerx, San Francisco Sunday, May 13, 7pm stagewerx.org Johnny Winter Napa Valley Opera House, Napa Tuesday, May 15, 8pm nvoh.org Josh Workman Piedmont Piano Company Friday, May 18, 8pm piedmontpiano.com House of Floyd: Tribute to Pink Floyd El Campanil Theatre, Antioch Saturday, May 19, 8pm elcampaniltheatre.com Kai Eckhardt The Jazz School, Berkeley Sunday, May 20, 4:30pm jazzschool.com
Fishtank Ensemble Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley Thursday, May 3, 8pm 142throckmortontheatre.com
Jeff Campitelli & Peppino D’Agostino Benefit for VOENA Uptown Theatre, Napa Sunday, May 20, 7pm uptowntheatrenapa.com
The Snyder/Bump Organ Quartet Armando’s, Martinez Friday, May 4, 8pm armandosmartinez.com
Tab Benoit Mystic Theatre, Petaluma Thursday, May 24, 8pm mystictheatre.com
Little Kids Rock Benefit George’s, San Rafael Sunday, May 6, 5pm georgesnightclub.com
Pablo Cruise Firehouse Arts, Pleasanton Friday, May 25, 8pm firehousearts.org
Sweet Honey in the Rock Zellerbach Hall, Berkeley Sunday, May 6, 7pm calperfs.berkeley.edu
Eliyahu & the Qadim Ensemble Freight & Salvage, Berkeley Thursday, May 31, 8pm thefreight.org
Glass Blowing Demonstrations Wed-Sat until 4pm
Gallery Hours: Sun-Thurs 11-5 Fri 11-7 • Sat 10-7 109 East F Street Benicia, CA 94510
Camellia Tea Room Voted #2 Best Tea House in the SF Chronicle/SFGate.com
“Best of the Baylist” Delicious Lunch, Afternoon Tea, Desserts & Fine Teas & Tea Accessories
Camellia Tea Room • 828 First Street Downtown Benicia • 707.746.5293
Yan Spa & Massage Relax & enjoy special offer* *with this ad, expires 4/30/12
— 20 minute Chair Massage $19.99 $ — One hour Herbal Foot Massage 24.99 — One hour full body massage $49.99 — Two hours Full Body/Foot Massage $69.99 — One hour Full Body 4 Hands Massage $99.99 Reservation preferred Walk-ins welcome Gift certificates available 252 First Street, Benicia Open every day 9:30am-9:30pm 707.745.5888 • www.yansdayspa.com
BeniciaMagazine.com • 33
Calendar of Events
5/1 First Tuesdays Investment Club
Long-standing investment club Meets in Benicia first Tuesday each month For more info contact 707.373.1200
5/2-5/30 Toastmaster’s Group
Wednesday evening 7:30-9pm Learn to speak with confidence in a friendly environment 601 First Street, Suite 100, Benicia Larry Miller 707.745.5694
5/3-5/31 Benicia Certified Farmers Market 4-8pm
5/3 Gallery 621 Opening Reception 5-8pm
Fruit, vegetables, flowers, baked goods, arts & crafts First Street between B & D Streets Beniciamainstreet.org 707.745.9791
Featuring Linda Stevenson Dunlop “Horizons” Guest artist Judith Hoff Brooks “Healing the Spirit” Exhibit runs from May 3-27 621 First Street, Benicia, Thurs-Sun 12-5pm Gallery621.com 707.746.6211
5/3 Sustainable Benicia
Climate Action Plan 6-8:30pm Getting from Here to There—Energy in Benicia Public education & outreach with focus on energy City Council Chambers, 250 East L Street Constance Beutel, EdD firstname.lastname@example.org
5/4& 5/18 Ghost Walk with Donna Raymond & Devin Sisk
Fridays, Main Street Depot, 8pm Spooky tales of the paranormal history of Benicia Approx. 2 hours, no children under 10 Beniciamainstreet.org 707.745.9791
5/5 Community Parking Lot Sale 8am-2pm
5/5 California Native Plant Sale 9am-3pm
Major fundraiser to support BHS Grad Night BHS Front Parking Lot, 1101 Military West Beniciagradnight.net
Perennials, groundcovers, shrubs and trees Kids activities and irrigation workshop Corner of Military & East 2nd Street Cnpsjepson.dreamhosters.com 707.747.5815
34 • Benicia Magazine Calendar
Scan for more listings
5/5 & 5/6 Benicia Artists' Open Studios 10am-5pm
Access to over 60 artists' studios to view & purchase art Tyler, Jackson, Lincoln, & Grant Streets Artsbenicia.org 707.747.0131
5/5-5/27 Capitol & Fischer-Hanlon House
Weekends only 10am-5pm Fischer-Hanlon tours 1st & 3rd Sundays & 2nd Saturday Tours at 1, 2 and 3pm 115 West G Street, Benicia, 707.745.3385
5/10 Hurtful Heels & Tender Toes 6pm
5/12 Friends of the Library Book Sale 10am-4pm
5/12 Vintage Home & Garden Tour 11am-4pm
5/16 Evening Book Club for Adults 7-8pm
5/17 Community Blood Drive 1-7pm
5/20 Community Appreciation Event 2-4pm
5/28 Memorial Day Ceremony 10-11am
Treatments for foot & toe conditions NorthBay Healthcare, 4500 Business Center Dr. Fairfield, Northbay.org RSVP 707.646.3280
Benicia Library basement, 150 East L Street Benicialibrary.org 707.746.4343
Peek behind the doors & gates of 9 homes & gardens Tickets sold in advance & day of the tour Beniciahistoricalsfociety.org 707.751.1435 Sue Hayes
Library Doña Benicia Room Benicia Library, 150 East L Street Benicialibrary.org 707.746.4343
Donors must be in good health, 17+ yrs, over 110 lbs First Baptist Church, 1055 Southampton Road
Food, fun, & tours of Fischer-Hanlon House & Capitol Adults and children welcome—no admission charge Outdoor lawn of Benicia State Capitol 707.742.4108 or 745.5845
Guest speakers, C-5 flyover, Color Guard & more Benicia Arsenal Post Cemetery, end of Hospital Rd. Beniciahistoricalsociety.org
of Solano for 7 years
S UP U P E RVI S OR
Paid for by Seifert for Supervisor 2012 ID#1301737
Let our family keep your family comfortable! CA license #719381
Still on Your Side
& Best of the Bay for 2 years
Providing excellent customer service since 1996
1768 Broadway - Vallejo, CA 94589
Tosch Dental Let us make you feel at homeâ€” even in the dental chair!
bleach when scheduled for a routine exam & cleaning Make an appointment today & meet Dr. Tosch; proudly serving Benicia families for over 25 years.
Ronald J. Tosch, DDS l 118 West K St., Benicia, CA 94510 707.745.2130 l www.toschdental.com BeniciaMagazine.com â€˘ 35
“Affordable Quality Cabinets and Countertops exceeded our expectations every step of the way. Susy's innovative design maximized our space, allowing for more storage and functionality.” -Adam and Tracy
AFFORDABLE QUALITY Cabinets and Countertops
4852 East 2nd Street, Benicia Open M-F 9-5, weekends & evenings by appointment
from the renowned Nourot Glass Studios, with the purchase of your kitchen
Contractor’s License # 678979