Big Blend's Radio & Tv Magazine - Oct 2015

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National Parks Ghost Stories Fall Recipes The Arts Environment Family

Historic Coronado Motor Hotel Yuma's Destination Hotel Celebrating Over 75 Years of Tradition Where The Past Makes History

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233 4th Avenue, Yuma, AZ 85364 Toll Free: (877) 234-5567 Local: (928) 783-4453 PAGE 2

Contents‌ 5. Editors Block 22. Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway!

Toast to the Arts 6. Experience the Arts of Tulare County 10. Tucson Modernism Week 2015 12. The Barbizon School 14. Dos Angeles 15. 5 Common Mistakes Writers Make 16. Music News & Interviews

Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll 18. Music News & Interviews 20. Book News & Interviews

Creative Celebrations! 28. Halloween Cocktails

Eat, Drink & Be Merry! 30. Pure Portobello Pleasure 32. Bake It Beautiful & Slice It Up! 36. News & Interviews

Garden Gossip 38. Harvesting & Cooking With Herbs 39. Rose Report 40. Real Estate Secrets

Nature Connection 42. Tiger Tragedy in Asia PAGE 3

Contents Cont’ … Nature Connection Continued 43. Fisher Kits Reintroduced in Yosemite 44. Greening of New Orleans 46. Hi-Five to Solar Power!

Spirit of America 48. Yosemite National Park 50. Hans Florine Rocks 51. Kids in Parks

Vacation Station 54. Fall Weekend in Tres Pinos

Way Back When 58. Historic Graveyards of Norfolk, England 60. Ghost Party!

Success Express 70. Do You Work in the Food & Drink Industry?

Quality of Life 72. Excellence & Education 73. Commitment 74. Organize For Transition 76. No Sew Clothing Repairs 77. Laundry Revolution! 78. Rock Talk - Herkimer Diamonds PAGE 4

EDITORS BLOCK This issue celebrates the month of October with Fall Recipes and Halloween Cocktails, Graveyard Haunts and Ghost Stories, a spotlight on 125 yearold Yosemite National Park, and a feature on Kids in Parks. Speaking of parks, check out our new National Park Planner Facebook Page to keep up with our daily park posts and news from the Big Blend Spirit of America Tour, our quest to visit and cover all 408 National Park units and their gateway communities. Our Nature Connection department shares how Global Green USA continues to rebuild a Green New Orleans 10 years after Hurricane Katrina, how Solar Power Benefits Society, and why there’s such a desperate need to Save Asia’s Tigers. See our Front Cover Photo: Yosemite National Park coverage of the arts with new music, books, art events and destinations, and take a weekend trip to Lisa D. Smith historic Tres Pinos, California. There’s home and garden news and interviews, legal advice for the food and drink industry, a look at quantum learning in education, tips on getting organized, and more! We hope you enjoy this issue! Big Blend Radio streams live online on Wednesdays at 4pm PT / 7pm ET, and Fridays and Sundays at 11am PT / 2pm ET – catch our live or archived shows on One of the best ways to keep up with our upcoming shows is by following us on Facebook. Be sure to subscribe to our Big Blend e-Newsletter so you can enter our Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway. Remember, one winner wins all the prizes we add to the prize pot throughout the year. You will also receive our Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine in your email. Here’s to a Fabulous Fall Season! Nancy J. Reid and Lisa D. Smith Big Blend’s mother-daughter publishing, radio and travel team; along with Priscilla - Big Blend’s pink sock monkey travel mascot. This magazine is developed by Big Blend Magazine™. copyrighted since 1998. No part of it may be reproduced for any reason, without written permission from Big Blend Magazine, P.O. Box 87633, Tucson, AZ 857547633. Opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily that of this publication or any of its staff. We reserve the right to edit submittals. All subject matter is intended for general information only and not to be taken as personal advice in any matter. Although every effort is made to be accurate, we cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies or plagiarized copy submitted to us by advertisers or contributors.


A Toast to the Arts

Experience the Arts of Tulare County Art, Music and Theatre in California’s Sequoia Country


Listen to the Sandy Blankenship – Exeter Chamber of Commerce, Shirley Keller – artist/ co-ordinator of 1st Saturday Art in Three Rivers, and Erin Olm-Shipman of the Fox Theatre in Visalia. Located in central California, Tulare County is nestled at the base of the spectacular western Sierra Nevada mountain range, and is home to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Sequoia National Forest and Giant Sequoia National Monument. While Tulare County may get an ‘A’ for being one of the most productive agricultural regions in the state, the area also gets an ‘A’ for its dedication to The Arts. Numerous artists, performers, musicians and authors are drawn to this region, many of them calling it home. The local towns and cities host monthly art walks and studio tours, seasonal concerts, theatre performances, and a calendar chock-full of annual events and festivals that showcase visual art, music and the performing arts. The historic downtown districts feature beautiful architecture and colorful murals that provide a sense of place, telling visual stories of the land, community and its people.

Four Destinations that Celebrate the Arts in California’s Sequoia Country

EXETER Established in 1911, Exeter was once home to the largest cattle ranch in the US. Today, this quaint community grows citrus, deciduous fruit and table grapes, and is known for its outdoor gallery of over 30 murals that adorn the walls of the historic brick buildings in the charming downtown district. It’s a pleasure to stroll the flower-filled downtown and learn about the area’s cultural, natural and agricultural heritage as portrayed in the murals. Docents lead guided mural tours, and the Mural Gallery & Gift Shop carries mural-themed gifts.

Open on weekends, the Exeter Courthouse Gallery is attached to the Exeter Historical Museum, so you can view the historic artifacts alongside current local artist works. The gallery features a permanent fine art collection with exhibits that change every three months, focusing on artists from throughout Tulare County and the San Joaquin Valley. Other It’s well worth adding a couple of extra days to your highlights include a Summer Concert Series, Sequoia travel itinerary so that you can experience Summer Movies in the Park Series, and October’s the arts in Tulare County, savor the region’s diverse month-long Scarecrow Contest and week-long annual Fall Festival that features live entertainment and delicious culinary scene, and delight in some as well as art and crafts. Downtown Exeter also has true boutique and specialty shopping. When it a fantastic selection shops and dining options. To comes to lodging, there’s something for everyone including forest campgrounds and cabins, bed and book a mural tour and learn more about Exeter, visit breakfast inns, and hotels. PAGE 6

A Toast to the Arts Listen to historian/author Terry Ommen talk about the history of the Visalia Fox Theatre!


VISALIA Settled in 1852, Visalia is the oldest permanent inland settlement between Stockton and Los Angeles. Home to the Visalia Convention Center and the Visalia Fox Theatre, the historic downtown district features over 50 murals, art galleries and theatres, the 45-minute Historic Visalia Walking Trail, a good selection of antique and specialty shops, and a wonderful array of restaurants. The historic Visalia Fox Theatre was built in 1929 and opened in February 1930 during the days of “talking pictures” as part of Fox West Coast Theaters, the largest chain of motion picture theaters in the country. Today you can still see the ornate décor that features a garden court of an East Indian temple with wall murals, trees, and twinkling stars. From performances by the Tulare County Symphony and local community theatre companies, to major acts and touring shows, the Visalia Fox Theatre is heralded as one of the finest performing arts venues in California. A good introduction to the area’s talent, First Friday Downtown Visalia is a free monthly event that showcases a variety of visual and performing artists. Other noteworthy art venues in Visalia include the Arts Consortium, Arts Visalia, Creative Center, Imagine U Interactive Children’s Museum, Visalia Opera Company, Ice House Theatre and The Enchanted Playhouse Theatre Company. Continued on Next Page…


A Toast to the Arts

Three Rivers Performing Arts also serves as part of the volunteer support staff for the summer Located at the entrance of Sequoia National Park, Center State Strings Music Camp & Festival. Other Three Rivers is a vibrant art community with galleries, shops and restaurants situated along the annual art and music events include the Three Rivers Music Festival in May, High Sierra Jazz Kaweah River and throughout the foothills. In true Tulare County tradition there are murals to be seen, Band’s JazzAffair in September, and month-long plus, the outstanding Paul Bunyan wood sculpture Raven Festival in October. For up-to-date event news visit at the Three Rivers Historical Museum.


The 1st Saturday Art tour leads you to various artist studios and galleries, plus art demonstrations in the local shops and restaurants. Every month features a different theme. All you do is follow a map and visit venues that fly the 1st Saturday flag. It’s a great way to learn about art, explore the beautiful surroundings and enjoy some tasty bites along with a little shopping. Three Rivers Performing Arts presents virtuoso chamber music concerts and performing arts events throughout the year, including a Winter Concert Series and the popular Concert on the Grass in September.


A Toast to the Arts

The Porterville High School Band and its Fabulous Studio Band is honored by the two-sided “Marching Gateway to Sequoia National Forest, Porterville is Through Time” historical band mural at Centennial an All American City that boasts a vibrant historic Plaza, as well as at the Porterville Historical downtown district complete with murals, art galleries, specialty shops and restaurants. Held the Museum with memorabilia and a life-size mannequin of Frank "Buck" Shaffer, who directed first Friday of each month, the Porterville Art Walk is a wonderful way to experience the downtown art the band for 37 years. scene. On Friday evenings during the spring and Established in 1952 (in a real barn), The Barn fall, guests and locals gather in the Centennial Theater is California's longest running community Plaza for the Music on Main free concert series. theater that offers on-stage performances the Of note, the Porterville High School’s Panther Band whole family can enjoy. The idea for establishing a theater in Porterville came from Peter Tewksbury, is one of the longest running advanced level who later went on to become a successful director marching and concert bands. The band performs in both television and motion pictures. and travels nationally and has marched in six Tournament of Roses Parades, presented solo Visit to plan concerts at The Kennedy Center and Lincoln your Sequoia Getaway and to download a Center, and given two Carnegie Hall performances. visitor’s guide and maps.



Listen to Steve Schneickert as he recalls the Hollywood History of The Barn Theatre!


A Toast to the Arts


Celebrate Tucson’s Mid-20th Century Architectural Treasures Tucson’s Modernism captured the exuberance of the post WWII era, and is defined by clean, simple lines and a casual informality. In the Southern Arizona desert the movement has come to be defined as Sonoran Modern with the use of regional materials, adaptation to the desert climate and an emphasis on indoor/outdoor living.

Listen to Demion Clinco of the Tucson Historic Preservation Foundation and Lance Laber of DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun discuss the modern artwork of Ted DeGrazia and Tucson Modernism Week on Big Blend Radio

Tucson Modernism Week 2015 kicks off on October 2, in signature elegant style with an opening reception and a program of lectures, film, exhibits, tours, and gloriously glam parties. The very popular Vintage Trailer Show returns for the third consecutive year, along with a rare opportunity to view the jet-age inspired 1958 GM Firebird III, designed by Detroit legend, Harley Earl. The Vintage Car Show features a wide variety of privately owned finned-era cars. Presented by the Tucson Historic Preservation Foundation, Modernism Week celebrates Mid-Century Modern design and architecture throughout the city. DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun will present a special exhibit of Ted DeGrazia's modern work and fabrics (as pictured). There will be a free reception Sunday, October 4th from 4:006:00pm, with live music and rarely seen DeGrazia pieces. PAGE 10


A Toast to the Arts This year, Tucson Modernism Week spotlights Architect Icon Nicholas Sakellar, one of three architects credited with bringing modern architecture to Tucson. The son of Greek emigrants, Nicholas and his wife, Phyllis, moved to Tucson shortly after the end of World War II. In his 50 years of practice Sakellar created many of Tucson’s most beautiful buildings. Dino Sakellar will speak about his father’s life and work. President of Sakellar PLLC, Tucson’s oldest architectural firm, Dino has 40 years of experience as an architect and planner, and is a recognized leader in the profession and the community. Lectures include such topics as Saving Urban Renewal, Reading Mid-Century Neon, Garrett Eckbo Modern Landscape in Tucson, The Experimental Films of Charles and Ray Eames, The Past and Future of Midcentury Modern Architecture, Designing GM’s 1958 Firebird III, Danish Modern Design, The Life and Death of Blackwell House, Better Living in the Burbs, Judith Chafee: Artifact of Desert Magic, and The Remarkable Work of Sylvia and William Wilde. In addition to the always spectacular Home Tour, there is a Modernism Downtown Walking Tour, Retro Bus Tour of Miracle Mile, and Guy Greene’s Desert Museum/Sunset Magazine Case Study Garden Tour. The Fabulous Modernist Cocktail Party takes place at sunset in the historic Lininger House located in Flecha Caida, where each house was custom-built by some of the most renowned architects of the time such as Tom Gist, Arthur Brown and Nickolas Sakellar. The Downtown Clifton opens its doors for a wine reception where designer Clifton Taylor will discuss the “Moderne Dude Ranch” aesthetic that inspired much of the hotel’s transformation. Cophenhagen presents Danish Modern Design at a reception with furniture historian, Mark Mussari. The closing reception at the Murphy-Wilmot Library will have a fashion show courtesy of L.A.-based Clever Vintage Fashions with clothes from 1965 – the year the Sakellar-designed library was built. Tucson Modernism Week is a project of the Tucson Historic Preservation Foundation with support from Pima Community College. Tucson Modernism Week 2015 begins Friday, October 2nd and continues through Saturday, October 10th. For a complete listing of all events, and to purchase tickets online, please visit PAGE 11

A Toast to the Arts

Constant Troyon, The Ford, 1852


Victoria Chick discusses The Barbizon School on Big Blend Radio! We are so accustomed to artists working from nature that it may seem strange to think there were long periods in history where this was not the case. Most European artists of the 17th and 18th centuries still looked to past masters, particularly the Italian High Renaissance and Baroque painters, as producing the epitome of color, composition, draftsmanship, and worthy subject matter.

Landscape, if used, was minimal and totally subordinate to the lofty subject matter being visually described. Landscape backgrounds usually consisted of generalized trees, often interspersed with remnants of Roman or Greek architecture. Rome was still the place artists all over Europe aspired to go to in order to study classical painting and architecture. The French Academy offered a monetary Prix de Rome award each year to a young painter of promise. It paid his expenses for a year of study in Rome.

The idea of landscape as a stand-alone subject did not arise until the early 19th century in France and, even then, it was not well accepted. A few artists, Corot and Millet among them, were dissatisfied with the rules of the French Academy. Knowing that Dutch painters had made landscape an important part of paintings since the 17th century, and that Constable was painting from nature in England, In the 19th century, the classical model of painting they determined to paint from nature. If figures was still revered along with classical subjects. If the were included, they were of peasants and laborers artist was not a portrait painter, his studio time was whose work was given dignity. They viewed themselves as Realists. spent imaginatively arranging his compositions in order to tell a historical, Biblical, or mythological Continued on Next Page‌ story. PAGE 12

A Toast to the Arts Toward the 1870s, there were discoveries in the new science of Physics regarding refraction of light and new theories of color. A younger group of painters termed Impressionists were influenced by this new information and over a period of ten years eclipsed the Barbizon school. Because of the scientific basis for their painting, they felt they were the true “realists” when they painted out-of-doors. However, the influence of the Barbizon School continued and spread to the United States. The realism of the Barbizon School was an example to painters of the New York Hudson River School and many of the artists that painted natural wonders in wilderness areas of the United States. Victoria Chick is the founder of the Cow Trail Art Studio in southwest New Mexico. She received a B.A. in Art from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and awarded an M.F.A. in Painting from Kent State University in Ohio. Visit her website at Charles Jacque, The Old Forest, c. 1860s A short trip from Paris by train took them to the village of Barbizon, at the edge of the Forest of Fontainebleau. They were gradually joined in that village by other painters also interested in direct painting from nature, rather than taking sketches back to the studio and painting there. Barbizon became an artists’ community. The term Barbizon School does not refer to any academic entity but, rather, to the style and subject matter adopted by most of the artists in Barbizon during the period from 1830-1870. Barbizon painters painted from nature. Fontainebleau Forest and surrounding farmland were favorite subjects. In some ways, the Barbizon school followed Realist ideals. Yet, their dramatic tones of light and dark and picturesque views also romanticized their subjects. In most Barbizon paintings any figures are tiny, giving the impression of the majesty of nature and the insignificance of man.

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, View of the Forest of Fontainebleau (1830)

Besides the invention of engines that made railways possible and, therefore, places like Fontainebleau accessible, two other inventions of the Industrial Age made outdoor painting easier for artists. One invention was standardized metal tubes that held premixed paint. The other invention was a transportable easel that folded out of a wooden box much the size of a small suitcase. A handle enabled it to be easily carried. Both inventions made painting in remote locations practical. PAGE 13

A Toast to the Arts BOOKS & WRITING


DOS ANGELES New Novel by Michael O’Hara Introduces a Series of Mysteries and a Different Breed of Homicide Detective. Dos Angeles brings an exciting new character in the mystery genre: Paco Moran, a multicultural thirty-something, ex-LAPD homicide detective turned reluctant private eye. O’Hara puts Moran on the trail of a beautiful young Latina on the run with ten million dollars in cash. Half Anglo and half Mexican, Moran is a transitional character equally at home working in Beverly Hills or blue collar Boyle Heights, the tough East Los Angeles neighborhood where he was raised by a single mom. In his debut case Paco quickly learns he’ll be the fall guy if he doesn’t track down the young immigrant who allegedly stole a small fortune from a sleazy Hollywood producer secretly laundering money for a notorious drug cartel. Paco’s frantic search takes him on a roller-coaster ride through a shadowy place he calls Dos Angeles – a city within the city and a virtual country unto itself.

Listen to Michael O’Hara discuss ‘Dos Angeles’ and writing on Big Blend Radio!

Michael O’Hara is an Emmy nominated screenwriter; a former award-winning journalist and writer/producer of more than thirty TV movies and miniseries, including the highest-rated television movie (“Those She Left Behind’); the second highest-rated miniseries (“Switched at Birth”); creator of two TV movie franchises – NBC’s highly successful ‘Moment of Truth,’ and ABC’s ‘Crimes of Passion.’ In addition he wrote and produced a fourhour NBC miniseries based on James Patterson’s “First to Die.” Learn more at

Click to Watch Big Blend’s A Toast to the Arts TV!


A Toast to the Arts

We all make mistakes. It’s just a part of life. But when you’re on the writing journey, which more often than not is a long excursion, you want to avoid as many setbacks as possible. A good game plan is to take time to avoid the mistakes that waste time. So what are the common mistakes writers make that you want to avoid? 1. Not getting a manuscript professionally edited. Hey, even New York Times bestselling authors have their work edited. A new set of eyes reading your work is a blessing, not a curse. Invest in a talented editor. 2. Not verifying facts. It’s the age of the Internet and viral news. If your info is incorrect, somebody is going to call you on it. Not only is it embarrassing, it affects your credibility. 3. Assuming a publisher will promote your book. NOT! Even the major pubs expect an author to participate in book promotion, so be prepared to engage in social media, schedule your events, and pitch the media.


Listen to the Big Blend Radio interview with Lynn Wiese Sneyd ‘The Book Biz Whiz’.

5. Failing to learn the business of writing. Learning the craft of writing is key to being a successful writer, but then so is learning the business of writing. Book proposals, query letters, working effectively with agents, key components of contracts, book marketing – these are areas that you want to learn about in order to increase the odds of being successful.

Lynn is a writer, author, literary expert, PR consultant and owner of LWS Literary Services where she assists authors in book publicity campaigns, agent searches, book proposal writing, and editing. Most recently, she coauthored ‘The Horse Lover: A Cowboy’s Quest to Save the Wild Mustangs’ released by the University of Nebraska Press. Visit

4. Assuming that a book promotion campaign lasts 6 months to a year. Sometimes reality bites. Most campaigns need to extend beyond a year, especially for first books. Just ask authors who are out there pounding the virtual and paved sidewalks of publicity. (Tip: bring at least a few pair of shoes.) Photo courtesy Greene


A Toast to the Arts




JOSEPH EID - ‘Human’


Americana-folk singer/songwriter Joseph Eid chats with Big Blend Radio about his melodic and insightful full studio album ‘Human’, as well as his music videos, songwriting and musical background.

Singer-songwriter Rachel London talks with Big Blend Radio about her pulse-racing latest single ‘Runnin’ that’s distributed by Sony, produced by Mike Gonsolin and co-written by Nick Nittoli.

Born in Liberia to Lebanese parents, Joseph Eid grew up in the suburbs of New York in a strict and traditional home where the arts were only supported as a hobby and never as a career. During his college years, Eid studied psychology and pre-med but all the while, he dreamt of a career in music. Eventually Joseph made the bold choice of dropping out of med-school and moved to New York City to pursue music. He joined a band, picked up a guitar, and the songs poured out like rain. His journey led him to Los Angeles in 2007 where he started playing regularly at open mics and showcases. He began working with renowned guitarist/songwriter David Lamar, honing his songwriting at weekly showcases at the Stone Bar. He has written over 30 new songs as well as recorded his debut EP, ‘Cardiac Output’.

In her latest single ‘Runnin’, London honestly and powerfully belts out the whirlwind that is new love, and the trials and tribulations of relationships. London is a singer/songwriter creating a genre all her own by infusing contemporary pop with authentically raw and unapologetic lyricism. Her first single “Toxic Magic Tragic” reached people in more than 20 countries within hours of its viral release and received international radio airplay. Her second single, “I’m All Yours,” released under Warner and featuring Jon Secada, reached top 10 on both mainstream and independent charts, earning her an Artists in Music Award nomination for best new pop artist of the year. Her third single, “Marquee” was licensed and released in conjunction with a worldwide commercial placement as the sound of Jerome Alexander’s “Hot Stuff Go Pop” makeup. London’s upcoming EP, co-written and produced by Grammy nominee, Marthin Chan, is anticipated to be her most authentic body of work yet.

Keep up with Joseph’s tour dates and new videos at

Visit Rachel at


A Toast to the Arts

MUSIC NEWS & INTERVIEWS AOEDE ‘Do You Believe in Magic?’


Lisa Sniderman a.k.a. ‘Aoede’ joins BIg Blend Radio to discuss her innovative and mystical new audio musical ‘Do You Believe in Magic?’ written and recorded for young adults and those young at heart. ‘Do You Believe In Magic?’ is a brilliant, inventive alternative Rock Opera Musical for tweens and all "kids at heart" who resonate with the fantasy genre(think Into The Woods, Once Upon A Time and Harry Potter). Creator Lisa Sniderman does not disappoint! This musical masterpiece takes listeners on a spellbinding journey to the cursed kingdom of Wonderhaven where a muse (Aoede) has a secret, and where enchanted books and witches break into song! Audiences will embrace the colorful characters, the compelling story, the infectious songs, danceable duets, narration and full musical score. ‘Do You Believe In Magic?’ (along with her previous albums ‘What Are Dreams Mado Of?’ and ‘Is Love a Fairytale’) was produced, engineered and orchestrated by Aoede’s chief collaborator, Scrote (Jackson Browne, Van Dyke Parks, Daniel Johnston and The Stripminers). Musicians featured include: Craig Eastman, Peter Adams, Mike Klooster, Tim Young, Isaiah Gage, David Sands, Blair Sinta, Scrote and Aoede/Lisa Sniderman.

In addition to the return of narrator Kevin Ponthier (who narrated both ‘What Are Dreams Made Of? and ‘Is Love A Fairy Tale?’) and the spirited David Yow as Luk, the collection includes San Francisco Bay Area musical theater actors, who lend their dynamic voices to the characters. Tracks were recorded in Berkeley, San Francisco and Los Angeles, California. The project was mastered by Rainer Gembalcyzk. Listen to Lisa’s Big Blend Radio interview featuring audio clips from ‘Do You Believe in Magic?’ and watch the videos below showing highlights from a staged reading at Tides Theatre, San Francisco. Visit


Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll Music News & Interviews ZAKIYA HOOKER ‘In The Mood’ Blues legend John Lee Hooker is best remembered for his iconic hits, "Boom, Boom" and "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer." But perhaps his greatest legacy is found in the seductively supple vocal stylings of his daughter, the jazz-inflected, bluesy recording artist, Zakiya Hooker. Listen to Zakiya Hooker’s lively Big Blend Radio interview discussing her new albums ‘In The Mood’ and ‘Zakiya Hooker Live at the International BluesFest Eutin, Germany,’ the ins-and-outs of the music industry, and working with her producer / recording artist husband Ollan Christopher aka Chris James. "In the Mood" is one of Zakiya's most diverse efforts to date. With the music actually recorded in Argentina and Zakiya's vocals laid down in her current home state of Georgia, the project boasts eleven tracks drenched deep in the muddied Delta waters. "Zakiya Hooker Live at the International BluesFest Eutin, Germany," transports the listener overseas and right beside Zakiya onstage as she charms a live audience with her jazzy blue interpretations. Performing blues classics as well as material from her vast catalog and John Lee Hooker originals, Zakiya proves she is live and 'not Memorex' with a voice that is smooth as silk and steadies the course under any conditions. Visit



Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll Music News & Interviews


Listen to The Loose Hinges on Big Blend Radio where they discuss their new album ‘Nothing’s Permanent’, talk about organic farming and songwriting, and share their timely ‘Rants & Raves’.

THE LOOSE HINGES ‘Nothing’s Permanent’ The Loose Hinges are an American singersongwriter duo based on Nashville’s upper west side in the rural community of Joelton, Tenn. Eliot Houser and Kris McCarthy began their collective career in 2010 with an eponymous long-play debut which met with critical reviews and enthusiastic support for more. Since that time, the duo has written prolifically, followed a prudent production schedule, while keeping a regular regional touring schedule. Perfectly centered in the spirit of the independent music movement, Houser and McCarthy are a disciplined writing team pulling organic inspiration from robust and fertile roots.

Their lyrics and music blossom without rehashing trifled themes overwrought in America’s cultural consciousness. Bringing their collective influence to the table -- he’s a native Texan and she’s a native Tennessean -- there’s a palpable hipness in the mix. His many years of hands on involvement as a producer, performing and recording artist are the yin to her yang in the performing arts. A heady blend of tradition, originality, familiarity, and maturity is well-established in the DNA of their work. Exceptional harmonies and solidly crafted songs are the chemical strands that bind them.


Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll Book News & Interviews DEVIN S. JAMES ‘Inside Ferguson: A Voice for the Voiceless’. When protests turned violent after Michael Brown was killed, St. Louis County leaders called upon diversity expert Devin S. James to help bridge the gap between Ferguson's allwhite leadership and its outraged Black community. They thought his background made him perfect for the task. James has firsthand experience of the ambiguity of the criminal justice system, making him a very unlikely success story. An abused child, high school drop-out, victim of gun violence and former gang member, his transformation as an astute, educated communications professional speaks volumes about his intellect, character and integrity. In his new memoir, Inside Ferguson: A Voice for the Voiceless, James offers readers a behind-thescenes look at the challenges he experienced while working with Ferguson city officials and leaders resistant to change. ‘Inside Ferguson: A Voice for the Voiceless’ is an explosive missile of truth from a man uniquely positioned to uncover the real mechanics of damage control and race relations. The insider game he reveals is gut wrenching as he exposes the Black community as pawns in a war that rages deeper than the death of one victim. James' account will make you question the progress America has made in the quest for racial equality and reflect upon the true meaning of "Black Lives Matter."



Listen to Devin S. James on Big Blend Radio and visit

Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll Book News & Interviews JONATHAN BANNON MAHER ‘The Destiny of Humanity’ ‘The Destiny of Humanity’ is the first book to have ever been written for, and sent, to the leaders of every country on Earth.


Listen to Jonathan Bannon Maher on Big Blend Radio discuss a variety of topics covered in his book.

Chapters cover: War, Privacy, Poverty & Trade; Innovation & Education; Space Exploration & Colonization; Health; Technology, Hunger & Disease; Social & Economic Opportunity; Financial Institutions & Capital Markets; Economic Development; Government & Freedom; Environment, Energy & Transportation. What did the leaders say? "I am confident that this book will surely attract public attention to the important task of building a peaceful and prosperous world for all." Norodom Sihamoni, King, Cambodia “A pointing of horizons and goals to which we must be aware. The quest for harmony and a blend of attitudes that could reach the heights of the global and total dignity of human beings." Jose Maria Neves, Prime Minister, Cape Verde "It is the kindness of people like you that continue to renew my confidence about what we, as Americans, can achieve together." Jill Biden, Second Lady, United States of America Also the author of ‘Building a Successful Organization’ and hit song ‘The Fallout of Love’, Jonathan Bannon Maher writes network intrusion detection and prevention software for the Pentagon. In his free time, he writes investment management algorithms and works on startups. In 2012 at age 29, he ran for the United States Senate. Prior to that, Maher wrote software used to purchase and manage billions in assets at a hedge fund. Visit




Enter to Win the Year-Long Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway! ONE WINNER TAKES ALL! Every few weeks we add new prizes to the giveaway. These are announced in our Big Blend e-Newsletter, and the monthly Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine.

ck Cli to ! re Subscribe to the Big Blend e-Newsletter to get the monthly prize update, He cribe s monthly question, and entry form. Maximize your chances of winning by ub S answering as many questions as possible. As a subscriber your entries are tripled


each month. Last entry will be accepted on November 10, 2015. Winner will be announced in the December 2015 issue of Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine.

Click Here to Subscribe to Big Blend e-News to Enter the Big Blend Bonanza!

Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway Prizes Include: PRIZE #1: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Three Rivers Bed & Breakfast – Located in Three Rivers, California this Riverhouse is only 8 miles from the entrance to Sequoia National Park. Guest rooms feature a high ceiling, tiled floors, queen-sized bed, TV/VCR, Wi Fi, wood-burning fireplace, A/C and heat, small private verandah, private access to Kaweah River, private bathroom, wine and chocolates. Prize added Nov. 25, 2014. See:

PRIZE #2: $75 Gift Certificate at DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun – Located in Tucson, Arizona, this 10acre historic landmark is home to over 15,000 originals of famous Arizona artist Ted DeGrazia’s art pieces. A limited number of DeGrazia originals are available for purchase, while the gift shop offers a wide variety of popular DeGrazia reproductions. This certificate is for in-store use only. Prize added Dec. 22, 2014. See:

More Prizes! PAGE 22


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PRIZE #3: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Dream Manor Inn – Located in Globe, Arizona, the gateway community of Tonto National Monument, this Tuscan-style hill-top boutique resort features 20 guest rooms and extended-stay villas, a pool and Jacuzzi, walking paths, lush gardens, fountains, waterfall, a putting green, complimentary DVD and book libraries, free WiFi, and BBQ areas. Gift certificate can be used between Sunday-Thursday. Prize added January 20, 2015. See

PRIZE #4: Coronado Motor Hotel Getaway – Located in Yuma, Arizona the historic Coronado Motor Hotel features comfortable Spanish hacienda-style guest rooms with modern amenities, 2 swimming pools, Yuma Landing Bar & Grill (the site where the first airplane landed in Arizona), and the Casa de Coronado Museum. The hotel is in walking distance from the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area, the Colorado River, and historic downtown district. This prize includes a 2 night stay for 2 at the Coronado Motor Hotel (includes breakfast), $25 gift certificate for Yuma Landing Bar & Grill, plus a tour of Casa de Coronado Museum. Prize added February 23, 2015. See PRIZE #5: $25 Gift Certificate for The Peanut Patch - Located in Yuma, Arizona, The Peanut Patch is a popular gift shop that carries a variety peanuts, fresh fudge, homemade peanut butter and peanut brittle, fine chocolates, nostalgic candies, dried fruits and nuts, sugar-free candies, gourmet preserves and relishes, olives, salsas, syrups and raw honey. They have a nice selection of gifts and gift baskets. The Peanut Patch is open October – May, but has a year-round Fabulous Fudge Fan Club. Prize added March 23, 2015. See

PRIZE #6: 8 Keys of Excellence Gift Set - The 8 Keys of Excellence character education program is a free family program that guides young people toward a positive future full of confidence, motivation, creativity, team work, leadership and valuable life principles. This prize package includes the book “The 8 Keys of Excellence: Principles to Live By” written by Bobbi DePorter, large 8 Keys of Excellence Wall Set, and 8 Keys of Excellence wristbands. Prize added March 23, 2015. To learn more about the 8 Keys and to join the Excellence Movement, visit

More Prizes! PAGE 23

PRIZE #7: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Joshua Inn Bed & Breakfast – Located in historic downtown Hollister, California, the gateway community of Pinnacles National Park, Joshua Inn is a charming 1902 Victorian home featuring five beautifully appointed guest rooms, gourmet breakfasts, evening wine and cocktail hour, candy bar, complimentary WiFi. Enjoy a glass of ice tea while rocking on the front porch, out in the garden gazebo or in the parlor. Gift certificate can be used between Sunday-Thursday. Prize added April 28, 2015. See

PRIZE #8: Round of Golf for Two at Ridgemark Golf & Country Club – Located in Hollister, California, the gateway community of Pinnacles National Park, Ridgemark features a beautiful 18hole championship golf course designated as a "Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary", a pro shop, tennis courts, The Public House lounge and restaurant, 32 deluxe guest rooms, and indoor and outdoor wedding and event venues. Prize added April 28, 2015. See

PRIZE #9: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Yerington Inn – Located in historic downtown Yerington, in western Nevada off the Pony Express and California National Historic Trails, Yerington Inn is a newly renovated hotel that features 79 airconditioned guestrooms with complimentary highspeed WiFi, flat screen LCD TVs with cable, inroom microwave and fridge, coffee/tea makers, and more. The area features numerous hiking and biking trails, historic and cultural sites, casinos and restaurants. Prize added May 24, 2015. Visit

More Prizes! PAGE 24



PRIZE #10: $200 Gift Card for Dini’s Lucky Club – Located across the street from Yerington Inn, in historic downtown Yerington, Dini’s Lucky Club Restaurant & Casino is the oldest family owned and operated casino in Nevada. Here you can play the latest slots, video poker or keno, enjoy drinks at The Cellar Bar & Lounge, and eat a delicious breakfast, lunch or dinner at Dini’s Coffee Shop. Gift card can be used for food and drinks. Prize added May 24, 2015. Visit PRIZE #11: $25 Gift Certificate for The Bakery Gallery - The Bakery Gallery is a popular destination in Yerington, Nevada that offers a delicious variety of made-from-scratch cakes, pies, cookies, cupcakes, muffins, Danish pastries, coffee cakes, biscotti, and breads. They also serve coffee and espresso, have a decadent selection of chocolate truffles and desserts, and serve pre-fixe to-go dinners. Prize added May 24, 2015. Visit

PRIZE # 12: Book Set from C. Lee McKenzie – California based author C. Lee McKenzie writes young adult and middle grade books as well as short stories and non-fiction articles for young readers. This prize set includes 4 of her young adult novels: ‘Sudden Secrets’ (Evernight Teen 2014), 'Double Negative' (Evernight Teen, 2014), 'The Princess of Las Pulgas' (Westside Books, 2010), and 'Sliding on the Edge' (WestSide Books, 2009). Prize added June 22, 2015. Learn more at

More Prizes! PAGE 25



PRIZE #13: The Asphalt Warrior Series – The late author Gary Reilly’s best-selling ‘The Asphalt Warrior’ book series features the adventures of Denver cab driver Brendan Murphy, a.k.a. “Murph”. This prize set features all 7 books including: ‘The Asphalt Warrior’, ‘Ticket to Hollywood’, ‘The Heart of Darkness Club’, ‘Home for the Holidays’, ‘Doctor Lovebeads’, ‘Dark Night of the Soul, and ‘Pick Up at Union Station’. Prize added June 22, 2015. Learn more at

PRIZE #14: Allison Coil Mystery Series – Mark Stevens is the award winning author of the bestselling Allison Coil mystery series that’s set in the Flat Tops Wilderness of Colorado. This prize set features all 4 books including: ‘Antler Dust’, ‘Buried By Roan’, ‘Trapline’, and ‘Lake of Fire’. Prize added June 22, 2015. Learn more at

PRIZE #15: Blue Cat Balancing: This limited edition art poster is by figurative artist Victoria Chick, the founder of the Cow Trail Art Studio in southwest New Mexico. She received a B.A. in Art from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and awarded an M.F.A. in Painting from Kent State University in Ohio. Prize added July 28, 2015. Visit her website at

PRIZE #16: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Julian Lodge B&B Inn – Located in historic downtown Julian, San Diego’s popular mountain destination, the Julian Lodge and its guest rooms have the Old West ambiance of Julian, yet offer the comfort of modern air conditioning, private baths, TV and WiFi. Park your car and you're steps from shops, galleries, restaurants, historic attractions, wine tasting and Julian's famous apple pie. Gift certificate can be used between Sunday-Thursday, and includes continental breakfast. Prize added Aug. 27, 2015. Visit




PRIZE #17: $25 Gift Certificate for Jeremy’s on the Hill California Style Bistro – Owned and operated by Chef Jeremy Manley ‘San Diego’s Sustainable Chef’, Jeremy’s on the Hill is known for serving fresh and delicious farm-to-table cuisine with locally sourced ingredients. Seasonal menu features steaks, seafood, burgers, salads, sandwiches, desserts, micro-brews and local wines. The restaurant is located in Wynola, just a couple of minutes from Julian, CA. Prize added Aug. 27, 2015. Visit PRIZE #18: $25 Gift Certificate for Crossroads Treasures – Located in Santa Ysabel, just a couple of minutes from Julian, California, Crossroads Treasures features a vibrant variety of rocks, gems and minerals, Zuni fetishes and Native American crafts, jewelry and specialty beads, plants, books, lapidary and gold panning supplies. Prize added Aug. 27, 2015. Visit

PRIZE #19: CardNinja! - Free your arms from the straps of your purse with CardNinja. The CardNinja is incredibly convenient with its ultra-slim design and can hold cash and up to eight cards in one compact, convenient spot—on the back of your smartphone. CardNinja’s spandex sleeve and 3M adhesive ensure cards and money stay in securely, even if you flip it over. Prize added Sept. 28, 2015. Visit

ONE WINNER TAKES ALL! Every few weeks we add new prizes to the giveaway. These are announced in our Big Blend e-Newsletter, and the monthly Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine.

HOW DO YOU ENTER? Subscribe to the Big Blend e-Newsletter to get the monthly prize update, monthly question, and entry form. Maximize your chances of winning by answering as many questions as possible. As a subscriber your entries are tripled each month. Last entry will be accepted on November 10, 2015. Winner will be announced in the December 2015 issue of Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine.

Click Here to Subscribe to Big Blend e-News to Enter the Big Blend Bonanza!


Creative Celebrations HALLOWEEN COCKTAILS Spooktacular Sips ‘n Shots! Want a little zombie blood with your martini? Or how about a liquid shot of candy corn? Get into the spirit of Halloween with these easy-to-make cocktail recipes from Tyler Johnston and Heather Witherington, mixologists at the historic Yuma Landing Bar & Grill in Yuma, Arizona. October marks this popular restaurant and watering hole’s 25th anniversary, and the 104th year of being the site where the first airplane landed in Arizona. See more of their cocktail recipes at

Tyler’s Zombie Blood Martini For Cocktail: 1 oz. vodka 1 oz. peach schnapps 1 oz. sour apple schnapps 1 oz. coconut rum 1 oz. sweet and sour mix For Blood Slime: 3 Tbsp. corn syrup ½ tsp. red food coloring Rim Instructions: Mix corn syrup with red food coloring. Dip the rim of martini glass into the mixture, and slowly spin the glass to coat it. Turn the glass upright and the blood will begin to drip slightly. Set aside. Cocktail Instructions: Pour all ingredients into cocktail shaker half-filled with ice cubes. Shake well and pour over ice cubes into slimerimmed martini glass.

Heather’s Candy Corn Shooter Get a plastic shot cup and the fill center with Jagermeister. Fill the outer cup with orange soda.

Halloween - Where Did It Come From? Halloween is now one of North America’s most popular observances. It was brought to North America by way of Irish and British colonists, but largely ignored until the Us experienced a sizable influx of European immigrants in the nineteenth century. Thought to originate before Christianity as a Celtic festival known as Samhain, taking place once a year on or about November 1, bonfires were lit and offerings of food and drink were left out to attract the wandering spirits of all those who had passed away during the year. At this time those souls were finally allowed access to the ‘otherworld.’ Part of the celebration apparently included ‘mumming’, or dressing in disguise as the souls, going from home to home and performing in exchange for food and drink. Some souls elected to play pranks, perhaps due to the quality or quantity of the food and drink provided, or just because that was their general personality while among the living. PAGE 28

Yuma Landing Bar & Grill Come Eat, Drink & Be Merry where the First Airplane Landed in Arizona! Hangar Sports Bar 24 Beers on Tap ~ Daily Drink Specials Appetizers & Entrees Televised Sports Events ~ Live Music & Entertainment

Captain’s Lounge Top-shelf Cocktails ~ Fine Wines ~ Specialty Coffees

Yuma Landing Restaurant American & South-of-the-Border Cuisine Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

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Win! Win! Win! Sign up on for our Captain’s Log e-Newsletter and you will be entered into our monthly drawing for a $25 Yuma Landing Gift Certificate, plus you'll get news on other great giveaways, specials, Yuma Landing recipes, events news & more! Located on the same property as the Historic Coronado Motor Hotel, the Yuma Landing Bar & Grill is the site where the first airplane landed in Arizona, and features a state monument, historic photos and memorabilia.

Groups of 15 or more diners get a 15% discount on breakfast, lunch and dinner. All Military Personnel Receive a 20% Discount on Meals!

195 S. 4th Avenue, Yuma, Arizona Tel: (928) 782-7427 PAGE 47 PAGE 29

Eat, Drink & Be Merry

Portobello mushrooms are actually grown-up brown crimini mushrooms. Their earthy flavor and meaty texture makes them a favorite ingredient for vegetarian dishes, not to mention that they are a good nutritional source for B vitamins, riboflavin, and niacin. Try these recipes from Chef Ivan Flowers and Chef Jeremy Manley that feature the pure delicious pleasures of the Portobello Mushroom.


Listen to Chef Ivan Flowers discuss Portobello Mushrooms on Big Blend Radio!

ROASTED PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS This recipe from Five-Star Chef Ivan Flowers features a Garlic, Olive Oil and Balsamic Glaze, and Citrus Sriracha Aioli. Ingredients: 4 Large Portobello Mushrooms, gills and stems removed ¾ Cup Olive Oil 1/3 Cup Balsamic Vinegar ½ Tsp. Sugar ¾ Tsp. Granulated Garlic ½ Cup Mayonnaise 1 Tbsp. Sriracha Juice of 1 Lemon Salt Pepper

Method: In a bowl combine the olive oil, sugar, balsamic vinegar and garlic. Mix well, add salt and pepper to taste. Marinate Portobello mushrooms in this for one hour. In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, Sriracha and lemon juice. Mix well and hold in the fridge. Preheat oven to 450. On a sprayed baking sheet, place Portobello mushrooms gill side up and fill them with the marinade. Cook for 7 minutes. Flip over and using a pastry brush, brush top side with marinade and cook for 7 more minutes. Remove from oven, slice and serve with Sriracha aioli for dipping. Serves 4. PAGE 30

Eat, Drink & Be Merry

PORTOBELLO MUSHROOM BURGERS This recipe from Chef Jeremy Manley ‘San Diego’s Sustainable Chef’ is served on a brioche bun with Chèvre goat cheese, caramelized onions, and avocado. For more of Chef Manley’s recipes visit Ingredients: 2 Large Portobello mushrooms cut in half 3 Basil leaves sliced as thin as possible, stems removed 2 Cloves of garlic, sliced thin 1/8 Cup balsamic vinegar 1/4 Cup olive oil 1 Teaspoon kosher salt 1 Teaspoon fresh cracked white pepper

Cook the Portobellos for 4-8 minutes on each side depending on desired mushroom texture and your personal taste. Serve on a brioche bun with Chèvre goat cheese, caramelized onions, and thinly sliced avocado. Caramelized onions: 1 White onion, thinly sliced 2 Tablespoons of butter 2 Sprigs of thyme 1 Teaspoon kosher salt 1 Shot of Jim Beam Kentucky Bourbon (optional) Thinly slice your white onion and place in Sauté pan with the 2 tablespoons of butter, thyme and salt. Over a high flame begin cooking your onions and stir them every couple minutes. You can turn the flame to low if you like, however high flame and paying attention to the transformation in your sauté pan will mean you can eat at a quicker time. After 15 minutes a caramelization should begin to form on your pan. Deglaze with the shot of Bourbon or water. Let cook another 5-7 minutes and remove from the heat. Add more salt if desired.

Method: Combine your basil, garlic cloves, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and white pepper in a mixing bowl and whisk together. Then place your marinade in your casserole pan. Place your mushrooms in the marinade for 20 minutes. After another 20 minutes flip your Portobellos over and marinade for a least another 20 minutes. You can leave your mushrooms in the marinade for up to 5 days. The longer they are in the more they will begin to break down. Reserve the liquid for making your own salad dressing, by adding an extra 1/2 cup of olive oil. Light the BBQ up and heat to 350 degrees. PAGE 31

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Eat, Drink & Be Merry

There’s nothing like the aroma of fall fruits and spices wafting out of the kitchen, not to mention the delicious flavors of home-style baked goodies. From cornbread to persimmon, pumpkin, date and banana, here are five bread recipes that celebrate the season.


Ruth’s Home-style Cornbread Recipe Cornbread is rich and dense enough to please everyone over the forthcoming holiday season. I like to serve it with honey and/or sour cream on the side. Be careful not to over bake! Makes 12 servings in a 4 1/2 x 8 1/2 x 3 inches loaf pan. This recipe is from Ruth Milstein, author of the Gourmand award-winning recipe book ‘Cooking with Love: Ventures Into the New Israeli Cuisine’. Visit for more recipes. Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup yellow cornmeal 3 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup apple sauce 1/4 cup honey 1 cup soy milk or 3% milk 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil 2 large eggs or 1 egg and 2 eggs white, lightly beaten

Ruth & Howard Milstein talk Cornbread and wine on Big Blend Radio! Method: In a large bowl combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt; stir well. Blend in apple sauce and the honey. In a separate bowl whisk together the milk, oil and eggs. Pour the milk egg mixture into the flour mixture and combine gently. Pour batter into a greased baking pan and bake in a 400◦ preheated oven for 20 minutes until the wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. * For those who love "wet" cake, mix 1/2 cup orange juice with 1 tablespoon orange liquor; drip the mixture by spoon over the cake after baking. * Bread is suitable for breakfast and keeps fresh if frozen, for 2 months. You may double the ingredients and bake 2 loaves for 25 minutes. Let it cool after baking and wrap tightly with plastic wrap and freeze.


Eat, Drink & Be Merry

Leah’s Persimmon Bread Featuring Fuyu Persimmons, this fall inspired recipe is from Leah Launey, innkeeper of Three Rivers Bed & Breakfast in California’s Sequoia Country. Visit to learn more. Ingredients: 1 cup whole wheat flour 3/4 cup unbleached flour 3/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 cup dark brown sugar 2 large brown eggs (I use Glaum's organic), lightly beaten 1/4 cup maple syrup 1/3 cup canola oil 1/4 cup plain nonfat homemade yogurt Approximately 3/4 cup peeled and mashed Fuyu persimmons

Terri’s Pumpkin Bread This pumpkin bread recipe from Terri Bailey, coowner of Bailey’s Palomar Resort in Palomar Mountain, California, can be baked in two loaf pans or mini loaf pans – perfect for gifts! For more of Terri’s recipes visit Ingredients: 3 cup sugar 1 ½ tsp. salt 3 ½ cup flour ½ tsp. cloves 1 cup oil 1 tsp. cinnamon 4 eggs ½ cup walnuts, chopped 2 cup pumpkin pie filling 2/3 cup water 2 tsp. baking soda

Method: Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. Method: Sift the flours and soda together, twice. Gently stir Preheat oven to 350 degrees. in the dark brown sugar. Combine all ingredients in one large bowl. Grease Separately, mix the wet ingredients together. Fold two loaf pans. wet mixture into dry until just blended. Divide batter and pour into baking pans. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in You can sprinkle nuts on top and they will roast and the middle comes out clean. add a delicious flavor to the bread. Actual oven temperatures vary, but this bread Bake for 1 hour. should be ready in about 50 minutes. The first time you bake it in your own oven, keep an eye on the bread, and if the edges are cooking faster than the middle, cover the edges with foil to prevent them from getting too dark. Oven temperatures vary and the type of pan you are using makes a difference. Again, on average, the bread should be done in about 50 minutes. PAGE 33

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Eat, Drink & Be Merry TV!

Eat, Drink & Be Merry

Debbie’s Spicy Date Loaf Served with whipped cream or covered in browned butter frosting, this recipe is from Debbie Mansheim, owner of Basket Creations & More in Yuma, Arizona. It features locally grown Medjool dates from Bard Date Company. For more recipes featuring Medjool dates visit Ingredients: 1 ½ cup boiling coffee ½ cup Medjool dates, cut 3 cups all-purpose flour 1 tsp. baking powder 2 eggs 1 cup nuts 2 tsp. vanilla 1 tsp. salt ¾ cups sugar 1 cup brown sugar ¾ cup shortening 1 tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. cinnamon Method: Pour coffee over dates and set aside. Cream sugars and shortening well. Add unbeaten eggs, one at a time. Sift dry ingredients and alternately add with date mixture, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Add nuts and vanilla. Bake in a 14 x 10 inch greased and floured pan at 350 degrees, for 40-45 minutes. PAGE 34

Eat, Drink & Be Merry

Donna’s Peanut Butter Banana Bread Offering a peanut butter twist to regular banana bread, this recipe is from Donna George, owner of The Peanut Patch in Yuma, Arizona. For more recipes featuring peanuts visit

Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 cup whole wheat flour 1 cup peanuts, chopped 1/4 cup wheat germ 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 2 teaspoons baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 4 eggs, room temperature 2 1/3 cups sugar 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter 1/2 cup canola oil 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 cups coarsely mashed bananas (about 3-4) Method: Combine flours, peanuts, wheat germ, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Beat eggs. Add sugar; beat until creamy. Add peanut butter, oil and vanilla; beat well. Add banana, beat 1 minute. Stir in dry ingredients until blended. Spray two 9X5X3-inch loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray. Divide batter equally between pans; tap on counter to settle batter. Bake at 375 degrees for 55 - 65 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes.


Eat, Drink & Be Merry NEWS & INTERVIEWS





Rio de Cerveza Brew Fest in Yuma, AZ

Iron Chef Team Building at The Wine Artist in SoCal

Listen to Linda Morgan, Executive Director of the Yuma Visitors Bureau, chat with Big Blend Radio about the annual Rio de Cerveza Brew Fest and Fall Fun in Yuma! Featuring craft brewers from throughout the region, the 3rd Annual Rio de Cerveza Brew Fest returns to Yuma on October 24, 2015 with over 60 beer samples, food vendors, art, live music by ‘80’s and Gentlemen’ and more! At this 21 and over event you can sample craft brews from a wide variety of regional breweries. Held at the Desert Sun Stadium from 5-9pm, drinkers receive a souvenir sampling mug and 24 pours and designated drivers get free soda and water. Proceeds benefit the Yuma Veterans Fund. For tickets and information visit

MJ Hong, Proprietress of The Wine Artist and SoCal Media Coordinator for International Food Wine Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), talks with Big Blend Radio about her boutique winery and special event venue in Orange County, California that has hosted special media events for IFWTWA. The Wine Artist is a 2,500 square foot elegantly decorated Tuscan themed boutique winery and event venue that specializes in custom labeled wines, as well as private parties and corporate events that feature team building exercises such as Iron Chef competitions! So whose cuisine will reign supreme? Find out at



Garden Gossip

Garlic, my next favorite.

Beautiful Basil and Good-for-You Garlic By herbalist Cynthia Johnston As I ponder the array of herbs in my garden that await harvest for use in my kitchen…..I see Rosemary, Basil, Thyme, Garlic and Chives. These herbs are abundant by nature and if you are wise enough to have them in your garden you are able to enhance any meal with the sheer, sharp, pleasure of fresh, fragrant all natural herbs right from your own backyard.

There is simply nothing like going out into the garden, digging up a garlic bulb to use in dinner preparations. Washed, crushed, chopped and added to anything……..this is simply the most aromatic experience one can have with garlic. As well as being an amazing immune support, garlic is antibacterial and antimicrobial. If you have picked up any moist, moldy, conditions this summer…this is your antidote. Incorporate garlic in to your diet whenever possible. Aside from these two specific herbs…..there is simply nothing more satisfying then going to one’s garden to harvest chives, tarragon, oregano, thyme or rosemary to use in the days meals. The cycle of nature, the cycles of plants and herbs, will assist you to be more in touch with the cycles of your body….and life. And this is a good thing!

My favorite, Basil.

Cynthia Johnston is an herbalist and founder of MoonMaid Botanicals, a small herb company that is dedicated to providing high quality herbal products that are free of chemical preservatives, propylparabens or synthetics of any kind. Products include remedies for menopause, PMS, yeast infections, common women’s health issues, and herbal products for the family. Learn more or shop For pesto, mix the frozen, crushed basil leaves with online at equal parts feta cheese, olive oil, pine nuts (or walnuts, almonds etc.) and a bit of salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix well. I use a narrow mouth spaghetti sauce jar with an Osterizer blender blade to mix on my blender. Simply screw your blender blade/top onto the jar………whalah!!! Perfect for mixing sauces, dressings or smoothies. I harvest this abundant plant just before it begins to show a flower top. Cut it 6 to 12 inches down the plant, depending how tall it has grown. Strip the leaves from the stem. Place the leaves in a plastic bag, seal tightly and put in the freezer. When frozen, crush the leaves well.

One can also simply toss these frozen leaves into hot drained pasta, add salt, pepper and olive oil. A bit lower calorie than the pesto…..and equally as good.


Garden Gossip

Photos Above : Champagne Wishes & Pink Beverly Photo Below: Belinda’s Dream & Priscilla Photos by Teresa Byington Those topics ranged from fall rose care to new hybrids, the history of the Peace Rose, the naming of roses in regards to country music, and even a lesson on the difference between ‘nekked’ and ‘naked!’ In honor of Priscilla, Big Blend’s pink sock monkey travel mascot, Chris and Teresa also came up with a few rose varieties such as Champagne Wishes, the Pink Beverly and Belinda’s Dream (pictured). Keep up with Chris and Teresa at


Rosarians and hosts of the popular Rose Chat Podcast, Chris VanCleave ‘The Redneck Rosarian’ and Teresa Byington (photo above) just returned from the American Rose Society’s National Convention that included a rose show and various lectures presented by experts and well known hybridizers such as Will Radler, Michael Marriott, Alain Meilland, Thomas Proll and Steve Hutton. Listen to their Big Blend Radio conversation that follows Steve Schneickert’s Hollywood History segment on roses. It sure was a lively chat that covered the convention and rose show, and a variety of rose related topics. PAGE 39

Garden Gossip

When it comes to purchasing overseas property, there are two vital factors that buyers Listen to have to keep in mind – location, location, Garrett Kenny on location and local knowledge. And for those Big Blend Radio! looking to buy in Central Florida, Garrett Kenny, the Chief Executive Officer of leading developer Garrett Kenny, knows the Orlando region ‘like the and agent, Feltrim Group, has plenty of both! back of his hand’ following his move from Ireland in 1996. He wrote ‘Buying and Owning Property in Anyone who wants practical advice about the buying process – particularly overseas buyers who Central Florida’ because there was no similar guide available. may not be familiar with the process in the United States – will find Mr Kenny’s book ‘Buying and “The more I look at the books and guides available Owning Property in Central Florida’ invaluable. Mr Kenny, who has sold more than US $600 million to those who want to buy real estate in Central Florida – whether as a holiday home, an investment of real estate and won numerous industry awards, says, “It is very important for the buyer to carry out property or to live here – the more I am depressed by the poor quality available. The answer was to in-depth research - not just on the area but on the write my own guide! There is so much I know today property as well.” that I wish I had been aware of when I first came to “Long-distance buyers can be sure they are getting Florida and bought my home. This book provides overseas property buyers with that knowledge and the right information by obtaining local expert knowledge. The internet is a great tool. You have a is focused on practical ‘must-knows’.” lot of photographs, a lot of good stories, but nothing The 322-page book covers everything homebuyers will ever substitute the local expert knowledge – need to know including how to carry out initial knowing exactly what is on the ground and where research, how to find the right property and who are the good locations versus the bad locations.” should own it, inspections, surveys and the financial and legal processes. It also explores other But how do you know who is an expert? “It is important the buyer asks hard questions of the essential issues including the cost of buying, moving in, letting your property, investments, visas so-called expert. How long has he or she been in the business? How long have they been operating and immigration, taxes and more. It aims to provide a short, readable and practical in an area? For example, myself, I’ve been outline to help those buying property in Central operating in Orlando for close to 13 years. I’m not Florida, to understand and solve the problems good in Miami. I’m not good in other parts of Florida, but I consider Orlando my back yard and I involved and to save them time, stress and money. know my back yard.” PAGE 40


Garden Gossip

What makes Orlando so attractive for real estate investors and vacation home owners? It attracted 62 million visitors in 2014, making it the most popular destination in the United States, way ahead of the 48 million in New York. And millions more are to come in the future. Orlando International Airport is just undergoing an US $1.5 billion expansion to cater for visitor growth over the next 10 years. The area is famous for its worldclass theme parks, including Disney, Universal, Legoland, Discovery Cove and SeaWorld, who spend billions of dollars a year in marketing the area. Garrett Kenny says serious international buyers who travel to Orlando receive much more help from Feltrim Group than simply looking at their chosen property. “When you come out to Orlando, we are not just going to show you a three-bedroom house or a four bedroom house. We are going to show you the area and all the economic activity that is happening in the area. It is very important for you as a buyer to understand what is happening in that area. We will help you open a bank account, find a tax advisor and apply for a mortgage if you need one.” Figures recently released by the National Association of Realtors show that the value of US property bought by overseas investors reached US $104 billion in the year to March 2015, up 13% from the previous year, according to the Profile of International Home Buying Activity.

Mr Kenny says anyone thinking of buying a property in another country should always take professional advice. Visit for more information.

The figures are topped by Chinese and Canadian buyers – who are also the leading overseas buyers of Feltrim Group developments – as well as UK investors. Florida is the most popular state and accounts for 21% of all international purchases. Among in-demand Feltrim Group properties is the new Balmoral at Water’s Edge luxury lakefront resort and community that promises to be one of the most attractive developments south of the Disney area. It is set within a 113-acre private gated community featuring natural and man-made lakes and impeccably landscaped gardens and parks, and provides an upscale, elegant and distinctive lifestyle for owners. The beautiful garden-themed community, just south of Orlando includes Tuscan-style architect-designed homes exclusive to top developer, the Feltrim Group, that are individually designed so no two homes look the same. Balmoral at Water’s Edge features a host of top-class leisure facilities, including a resort-style pool with luxury clubhouse, mini waterpark, lakeside beach, gym and spa, gourmet kitchen, restaurant and more.


Nature Connection - Wildlife

Tiger Tragedy in Asia

The illegal trade in tiger parts and products, poaching, conflict between tigers and communities living alongside them, and habitat loss and degradation, have caused wild tiger populations to plummet to as few as 3,200 individuals. Tiger range throughout India, Indochina and Southeast Asia is now 40 percent smaller than it was in 1951, and today tigers occupy a mere 7 percent of their historical territory. Amid this, the threats are mounting. On the Indian subcontinent, where the largest tiger population persists, only 11 percent of original habitat remains in an increasingly fragmented and often degraded state. Tigers are a conservation-dependent species, requiring large contiguous forests with access to water and undisturbed core areas in which to breed. China has only between 40 and 50 wild tigers remaining but more than 5,000 tigers in captive breeding facilities, ranging in size from a handful of tigers to two establishments which have more than 1,000 tigers in each. These facilities can be a ready source for a number of tiger products such as tiger skins - used as luxury home dĂŠcor and for tiger bone wine, made by hanging tiger carcasses in vats of wine and then bottling - a prestigious item used to show wealth and status and gifted to curry favor or give thanks for a business deal. Photo courtesy of Suresh Babu /


Adam Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA and Born Free Foundation, Talks Tiger Conservation on Big Blend Radio Poaching of tigers continues, and despite a 1975 ban on international tiger trade, seizures of tigers and tiger products across the Asian region show a healthy ongoing trade, with a mingling of captive bred tigers and wild tigers. This highlights a growing concern among conservationists: that these captive bred tigers are not only feeding demand for tiger products across Asia, but are also stimulating it, placing an additional and unsustainable pressure on their wild counterparts. Born Free USA and the UK based Born Free Foundation are global leaders in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, they lead vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic "pets," trapping and fur, poaching and the destructive international wildlife trade. Visit


Nature Connection - Wildlife

Fisher Kits Reintroduced in Yosemite National Park Four Orphaned Fisher Kits Released North of the Merced River

Four rescued fisher (Martes pennanti) kits were released in mid-September, north of the Merced River in Yosemite National Park. This historic reintroduction was a cooperative effort between the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station (PSW), Fresno-Chaffee Zoo, and the Fresno Wildlife Rehabilitation Foundation. The reintroduction aims to increase the long term viability of the declining fisher population by expanding its population to the northern part of Yosemite National Park.

The release of these orphan kits, now approximately six months old, back into the wild is part of a four-year effort to reintroduce fishers north of the Merced River in Yosemite National Park. Historic records show that fishers once occupied this area but trapping and logging in the late 1800s and early 1900s likely led to their local extinction. Despite over 70 years of protection, fishers have failed to successfully recolonize the area.

Biologists hope that human-assisted migration north of Yosemite Valley and across the Merced River barrier may help increase the long term The kits, two sets of siblings, were rescued south of viability of the population by expanding its distribution. National Park Service and Forest the park on U.S. Forest Service land after two Service biologists will work together to monitor radio-collared female fishers were killed by these four kits. If they survive at rates similar to predators. The kits were rescued by PSW other juvenile fishers, the population will be researchers Craig Thompson and Laura Van augmented in the following years with additional Vranken. Estimated to be approximately eight orphans that would have otherwise died if they had weeks old, the kits were taken to the Fresnonot been rescued by researchers. Chaffee Zoo to be cared for until they could eat solid food. They were then moved to an outdoor The small, isolated population of fishers in the facility near Oakhurst run by the Fresno Wildlife southern Sierra Nevada is listed as threatened by Rehabilitation Foundation where they have since the state and is under consideration for federal grown and learned to hunt live prey. listing. This is due to fire, habitat loss, and other environmental threats. PAGE 43

Nature Connection - Energy & Environment

Global Green USA's Vision, Leadership, Community Coalition Building & Persistence Helps Create Models of Climate Resiliency for NOLA and At-Risk Coastal Cities Immediately after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, Global Green USA responded with a greenprint for sustainably rebuilding NOLA's schools, homes and communities to be climate resilient. Global Green USA's goals were to save residents money, improve health and create model buildings that would reduce the CO2 emissions that contribute to global climate change. Time Magazine previously reported, "No organization is doing more to green New Orleans than Global Green USA."

While 10 years ago, New Orleans embodied the dire threats and potential devastating impacts of climate change to coastal cities, today many NOLA neighborhoods reveal a green, hopeful future that especially benefits low-income and minority communities disproportionately harmed by climate change. "As we commemorate the 10 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and remember the extraordinary loss of life and unimaginable horrors caused by one of the first climate-related natural disasters in North America, we also reflect upon the remarkable resilience of New Orleans residents and the successful transformation of many neighborhoods, schools and communities that are now greener, healthier and more resilient," said Dr. Les McCabe, Global Green USA President and CEO. Today, thanks to Global Green: • Tens of thousands of New Orleanians are enjoying healthier lives in greener homes, schools and other community buildings.


• Thousands of students and teachers now go to school in more energy-efficient classrooms, which save hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in reduced electricity expenses, thanks to a generous grant from the Bush Clinton Katrina Fund.

• More than 25,000 people have toured Global Green's Model Green Home Visitor Center in the Holy Cross Project of the Lower Ninth Ward to Listen to Dr. Les McCabe, Global Green USA learn how to build and remodel their homes to be President and CEO, discuss Climate Change greener. The average monthly Energy bill (including and the Rebuilding of a Greener NOLA electricity and gas) of Holy Cross Project on Big Blend Radio! homeowners is less than $30. PAGE 44

Nature Connection - Energy & Environment

• More than 20,000 New Orleanians participated in Global Green’s innovative Build it Back Green (BIBG) workshops and community events. BIBG directly assisted over 3,000 New Orleans residents and saved approximately 1,713,500 pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere which is equal to the planting of 35,699 trees or taking 150 cars off the road for a year. • Over $1 million dollars in revenue was generated for local and small business contractors through Global Green's implementation of NOLA Wise that completed 170 single-family retrofits which will save a combined total of 763,170 kilowatt hours of energy per year for these families.

Global Green USA is also commemorating the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and their efforts to rebuild a greener New Orleans by launching the Climate Champions fundraising campaign. The initiative recommits resources to NOLA and other at-risk cities such as New York, San Francisco, Miami, and Los Angeles in order to complete their Lower Ninth Ward Climate Action and Community Center, enhance their New Orleans-based Disaster Response Team, and educate and motivate people in other cities to make changes to prevent climate related disasters and become prepared before they happen, thereby lessening the destruction and shortening the reconstruction process.

To learn more about Global Green's remarkable initiatives over the past decade check out the Katrina10 blog series at For more information and to support the Climate Change Champions campaign, log onto or text CLIMATE to 77717. PAGE 45

Nature Connection - Energy & Environment


Robert Stayton talks with Big Blend Radio on the benefits of Solar Power.

2. SOLAR PV IS SECURE ENERGY A transportation system based on solar-charged electric vehicles breaks our dependency on oil. Because the sun bathes every country in solar energy, all countries become solar “haves,” and can rely on a secure supply of energy. Another side of energy security is to protect energy infrastructure—power plants, transmission lines, and refineries—from natural disasters and terrorist attacks. A single attack that disables a large centralized power plant can put millions of people in the dark. The wide dispersal of solar PV systems makes them harder to target.

3. SOLAR PV SAVES OIL FOR USE AS A RAW MATERIAL Oil is usually viewed as an energy source, but oil 1. SOLAR PV IS DISTRIBUTED also serves as a raw material for many chemical Distributed energy is defined as electricity products, including pharmaceuticals, solvents, produced from many small sources distributed over fertilizers, pesticides, and plastics. About 16% of oil a wide geographical area. Solar PV is distributed, production goes to materials other than energy. If while nuclear and coal-fired power plants are not, we burn all the oil for energy, then future because their economics require them to be large generations will not have this valuable resource. and centralized. Distributed energy systems have How much we preserve will depend on how quickly these advantages: we can transition from oil to solar-based energy systems. • Distance to the end user is shorter, so less energy is lost in transmission lines. • Not susceptible to grid-wide failure due to natural disaster or terrorist attack because there’s no single centralized facility. • No need for major new transmission lines and their dedicated corridors of land, which are becoming harder to secure. • Can use smaller distributed units for energy storage, which can be standardized and mass produced to make them cheaper. • Enables reusing waste heat from a generating system for heating buildings and hot water. The distributed nature of solar PV will require a smart grid, which is already being developed.

Author of "Power Shift: From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power,” Robert Arthur Stayton has a master’s degree in physics and has taught college courses in physics, energy, and solar energy. Robert and his wife built a passive solar home have been living with solar energy since then. He drives a solar-charged Plug-in Prius, heats his water with a solar water heating system, and bakes his bread in his solar oven. Visit


Nature Connection - Energy & Environment 4. SOLAR PV SAVES WATER Most people are surprised to learn how much water our current energy systems use. In coal and nuclear power plants, water is used for cooling. For a heat engine to continue to operate, its waste heat must be removed. Some power plants are sited so they can divert river or seawater through the plant to carry away the heat. In the U.S., 41% of all freshwater withdrawn from lakes and rivers is used for such energy cooling. By contrast, a solar PV system uses no water for its operation. Large PV farms use water to wash the collector surfaces to maximize output, but that process uses only 0.026 gallons per kilowatt-hour. With water stress growing in many parts of the world, energy systems like solar PV, which don’t compete for water, gain an advantage over those that do. 5. SOLAR PV REQUIRES NO DEDICATED LAND Most solar PV systems don’t need land set aside for them. With no moving parts and no noise, solar PV is very flexible in where it can be installed, as long as there’s sun exposure. Rooftops are the obvious choice, but panels can also be installed on racks over parking lots, on the ground along highway medians, and on pole mounts on pastureland.

Unlike wind energy, solar PV produces little visual impact. Groups of giant wind turbines with moving blades impose themselves on the visual landscape. Cape Wind, an offshore windfarm slated to be built five miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, was held up for years by coast residents who thought it would ruin their views of the horizon. Solar PV sits silently in place, attracting no one’s attention. PV modules in the form of solar shingles or roof tiles are already available to blend PV completely into a roof. Newer PV designs could expand the available areas even more. Semitransparent PV modules under development are tuned to absorb wavelengths that plants cannot use and pass through the wavelengths that plants need for photosynthesis. Such panels could be installed on greenhouses or erected over farmland, providing power without reducing agricultural output.


Spirit of America Tour

“Yosemite Valley, to me, is always a sunrise, a glitter of green and golden wonder in a vast edifice of stone and space.” ― Ansel Adams On June 30, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed a bill granting Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove to the State of California. John Muir, artists, writers and photographers helped spread the word about the giant trees, great granite peaks and the beautiful valley. On October 1, 1890, President Benjamin Harrison signed The Yosemite Reserves Act passed by Congress, creating Yosemite National Park as the nation’s third National Park, and preserving over 1,500 square miles of land including Tuolumne Meadows, the park’s high country, Hetch Hetchy and lands surrounding Yosemite Valley. This park was the inspiration for America’s greatest idea, our National Park system.

Meadows attract black bear, mule deer, red and gray fox, coyote, and bobcat as well as over 200 species of birds. Most of the year Yosemite has wildflowers in bloom, and is home to over 1450 wildflower species. Hummingbirds and butterflies visit the wildflowers, some emerging even before winter snows have melted, and there are many flower trails throughout the park. Yosemite offers hundreds of miles of hiking trails, rivers and waterfalls, plenty of wildlife, and the magnificent giant sequoias that can live over 2000 years, growing as wide as 25 feet in diameter. You could visit this park every day and see something different. Each season has its own dramatic look and feel as the flora and fauna change their habits to cope with the weather.

The Ahwahneechee lived here for generations before the Europeans arrived in the mid-1800s. Their stories live within the towering granite cliffs of Half Dome and North Dome that face each other, watching each other over the valley. These granite cliffs continue to be sculpted by waterfalls, weather and falling rocks–giving Yosemite an everchanging look. Ranging from 3000 to 13,000 feet in elevation, the park’s 750,000 acres of rich habitats range from thick foothill chaparral, conifer forests to expanses of alpine rock and caves. PAGE 48

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Spirit of America Tour Yosemite National Park Continued With over 4 million visitors per year, Yosemite is the third most visited National Park in the country, with most of the visitation occurring from late spring through late summer. We found fall and winter to be spectacular seasons to visit, and not overcrowded. A great time of year for hiking and photography, fall heralds the vibrant and rusty colors of the dogwood and maple leaves, and crystal clear reflections in the river. Winter brings the pure beauty of snow, startling ice formations in the river, and utter peace and quiet that promises to be broken by the bickering and chirping of woodpeckers, blue jays and ravens. Winter snow also brings about the opportunity to go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. Yosemite offers hiking, birding, wildflower trails, rock climbing, fishing, biking, camping, scenic drives and more– and each time you go, just like the seasons, your experience will be different. For more information including road and weather conditions, and park ranger programs visit Yosemite National Park was the 11th park visited on the Big Blend Spirit of

CROSS COUNTRY THROUGH THE CLOUDS Photo and text by John DeGrazio YExplore Global Adventures A sense of wonder arises as soon as the first snowflake hits the freshly frozen ground. Excitement abounds as outdoor activities are eagerly anticipated. El Capitan is veiled in mystery and a blanket of snow covers Half Dome along with every other Sierra peak. Yosemite transforms into a winter wonderland in a matter of minutes. Photographers flock to the banks of the Merced River ready to capture the mood of the day. Skiers and snowshoers embark on extended journeys across rolling hills and past jutting cliffs to quench their thirst for adventure and gaze upon the magnificent landscape.

Winter is here, and the crowds have dissipated. It is time to appreciate the beauty Yosemite offers its most intrepid visitors who are never disappointed and always rewarded.


Spirit of America Tour

HANS FLORINE ROCKS! Rock Climber Completes 100th Ascent of the Nose Route in Yosemite National Park Hans Florine, world renowned rock climber, completed his 100th ascent of the Nose Route of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park on September 12, 2015. Florine, along with Jayme Moye, an adventure writer from Boulder, Colorado, and Fiona Thornewell, an adventurer from London, England finished the ascent on Saturday afternoon, after beginning the climb on Thursday, September 10, 2015. This was the first time climbing El Capitan for both Moye and Thornewell. Florine’s first ascent of El Capitan was completed in 1989. The summit of El Capitan is 7,569 feet above sea level, and the climb from the floor of Yosemite Valley (at 4,000 feet) represents over 3,000 vertical feet of climbing. "El Capitan is both the most beautiful rock and has the best routes of any rock in the world", stated Florine. “I chose to do the 100th ascent of the Nose Route with two people who had never done it before. There is a crazy excitement and joy in being on a big wall for the first time and seeing it through their eyes.”

Photo by Steve Rokks, courtesy Yosemite NP This historic ascent of El Capitan also coincides with the 100th year of the National Park Service (NPS). The NPS will commemorate its Centennial on August 25, 2016, following the park’s 125th Anniversary on October 1 of this this year.


Spirit of America Tour

The faint breeze wrapped itself around my body as goosebumps dotted a course up my spine, across my arms and down my legs. My thirteen-year-old heart felt heavy as somberness washed over me. Standing beside the knee-high pile of white-washed rocks marking a mass grave at Isandlwana, I learned the impact of war. I had heard about the Battle of Isandlwana in school and read about it in my text books. But something about standing where one of the very first battles of the Anglo-Boer War occurred, gave me an intense feeling and a true understanding of this deadly part of South Africa’s history. When school exams came around, I only had to study the dates of the battles. From my experience, I knew the story, it lived within me.

From watching birds and wildlife and following hiking trails, I developed the art of patience and the ability to listen to the quietest of sounds and hear their message. I grew to have a high sense of awareness of my surroundings – be it in a city or a natural area. I had an intense passion for photography which taught me how to focus. Providing me with a sense of understanding, to look beyond my bubble of a world, the parks also told me the stories of different people and the history of the land. Continued on Next Page… USFWS photo by Steve Hillebrand

I am so very fortunate to have the incredible childhood my mother provided for me. ‘Keeping up with the Joneses’ was not a language she understood, nor wanted for us. Her hard earned resources were invested into creating life experiences for us through travel and by visiting parks, museums and historic sites. Whether it was England’s beautiful Lake District National Park, Kenya’s Nairobi National Park or South Africa’s Kruger National Park, just about every weekend and school holiday was spent exploring a park. From watching a pride of lions feast on an impala to being charged by a young elephant bull, to watching the great wildebeest migration in Maasai Mara, I have a big suitcase of amazing memories. However, I have an even larger set of life lessons. PAGE 51

Spirit of America Tour Kids in Parks Continued…. Parks taught me all these lessons, including the great importance of protecting and preserving not only the world’s wilderness areas, flora and fauna, geology and natural history - but also the diverse heritage of its people and places. By giving back as a volunteer I was fortunate to experience the greater connection between life and one’s soul, to know what I cared about, and to stand up and defend and protect it. Fast forward to my adult life. For the past two years my Mom and I (along with Priscilla, our pink sock monkey travel mascot) continue this journey of ‘life experiences’ by traveling full time on the Big Blend Spirit of America Tour, a quest to visit and cover all 408 National Parks units and their gateway communities. Lessons continue in abundance. And stress? Yes, like most adults it’s there but I guarantee that when we visit a park, you can literally feel it melt away as a whole new world opens up to us. Patience returns, as does focus, awareness and understanding. Last spring we were up in the Northern California Bay Area to visit Muir Woods National Monument and Point Reyes National Seashore. Chris, a good friend who lives up there joined us for our park exploring, and brought along his beautiful 3-yearold daughter Delilah. On our first hike in Point Reyes, I stopped to photograph some lovely lilies on a cliff. Delilah came up to me, held my hand and started a whole conversation with the flowers.

EVERY KID IN A PARK INITIATIVE As part of President Obama’s commitment to protect our nation’s unique outdoor spaces and ensure that every American has the opportunity to visit and enjoy them, the Every Kid in a Park initiative allows fourth graders nationwide to go to and obtain a pass for free entry for them and their families to more than 2,000 federally managed lands and waters nationwide through August 31, 2016.

By introducing fourth graders to public lands in their backyards and beyond at an early age, the I was intent on taking my photograph, and she was innovative Every Kid in a Park initiative delivers a intensely fascinated with the bugs on the petals nationwide call to action to build the next and how the flowers were swaying in the breeze. generation of outdoor stewards of our country’s spectacular and diverse federal lands and waters. Time stood still for her and the flowers were in her Connecting our nation’s youth to the great full focus. She reminded me to not just look and outdoors is even more important at a time when 80 click, but to stop and truly see. percent of American families live in cities and most One of the days we went hiking in Annandale State children spend more time on computers and smartphones than exploring nature. The initiative Park, a park Chris and Delilah visit often in Santa Rosa. Delilah spent time focusing on the lush moss is slated to continue with each year’s group of rolling over the rocks, and the lichen growing on the fourth graders to inspire successive generations to become responsible stewards of our nation’s trees. It was like a fairy garden for her. Crossing natural and cultural heritage. over streams was another fun experience for her, and as soon as we sat down for a little picnic, she Every Kid in a Park invites children of all took off her clothes and splashed around the edge backgrounds to discover their public lands and all of the stream. A product of nature, she was a they offer, including opportunities to be active and happy carefree spirit soaking up the clean air and the freshness of spring. On our way back down the spend time with friends and family. As living classrooms, these outdoor places and historic trail Delilah and Chris gave us a lesson of plant sites also provide hands-on, real-world identification. She was an excellent teacher and a opportunities to develop critical skills and learn good student of land stewardship. about the natural world. PAGE 52

Spirit of America Tour

NATURE = BRAIN HEALTH NPS photo by Will Elder, Golden Gate National What are the brain health benefits of taking a hike? Professor and psychologist Brant Cortright, Ph.D, author of the best-selling book “The Neurogenesis Diet & Lifestyle: Upgrade Your Brain, Upgrade Your Life,� brings these studies to our attention: A study of kids with diagnosed ADD (attention deficit disorder) were given a task to purposely fatigue their attention. Then they were given a 20 minute walk, either in 1.) a lush park or 2.) a downtown setting or 3.) an area with houses. Then their attention was measured again. The lush park group knocked it out of the park. They had superior attention compared to the other two groups, and the improvement in cognitive function matched that reported for the two top-selling ADHD medications. Also, walking in nature reduces cortisol and other glucocoricoids (stress hormones). In 1990, a Japanese researcher showed that walking indoors for 40 minutes vs. walking in a pristine forest for 40 minutes resulted in the nature walk group having improved mood, vigor, and lower cortisol levels. Another team of Japanese researchers from Chiba University collected data on 500 adults who walked in nature and reported they had lower stress levels, reduced depressive symptoms and hostility, better sleep, lower blood pressure and pulse rate and increased vigor.


Vacation Station

Nestled within San Benito County’s golden rolling hills, wine and ranch country, Tres Pinos is a small rustic historic town between the eastern entrance of Pinnacles National Park, and the city of Hollister, “The Birthplace of the American Biker.”


Park Ranger Paul Johnson, Pinnacles NP on Big Blend Radio!

SEE & DO Pinnacles National Park is just 30 minutes south of Tres Pinos. The cooler fall temperatures make it an excellent time to explore the park’s hiking trails through varied habitats of chaparral, oak and pine woodland, riparian areas, and grasslands. There are caves to explore and spectacular rock formations. Located on the migratory Pacific Flyway, Pinnacles NP is a bird watcher’s paradise. You may even get a chance to see a California Condor or Peregrine Falcon! See Continued on Next Page…


Vacation Station


Donnette Silva Carter, Bolado Park Event Center on Big Blend Radio!

Bolado Park Event Center - Home to the San Benito County Fairgrounds, Bolado Park Event Center hosts numerous events throughout the year, and also features the San Benito County Saddle Horse Association Museum that displays equestrian art, historic photos, saddlery and riding apparel. Upcoming events include: Oct. 1-4: San Benito County Fair; Oct. 17: San Benito Olive Festival; Oct. 24: Fault Line Derby Devilz Roller Derby. See


Don Pidd & Delbert Dody, San Benito County Historical & Recreational Park

San Benito County Historic Park is a historical village on 33 acres within San Benito County Historical and Recreational Park. Tour 10 historic buildings including the Willow Creek School House, Dunneville Dance Hall, Cottage Bar, and Tres Pinos Jail, plus see a diverse collection of historic homes, vehicles, farm and household implements, a rose garden, and more. Guided and group tours are available. It’s a great place to stop for an afternoon picnic! See PAGE 55

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Vacation Station

Tres Pinos Continued‌ Pinnacles Hill Golf Course features a scenic nine-hole course layout within the Hollister Hills. After your game, relax on the patio with a cold beverage and a burger or sandwich. Tel: (831) 628-9995



Shawna Castillo, 19th Hole Booze & Food

EAT & SLEEP 19th Hole Booze & Food is a historic restaurant and saloon that was founded in 1883. They are known for their juicy steaks, BBQ tri tip sandwiches and big tasty burgers. It’s a popular stop for motorcycle riders and day drivers who pass through Tres Pinos on scenic CA Route 25. Don’t forget to add your $1 bill to the saloon ceiling! See Pitch Your Tent or Hook Up the RV at Pinnacles National Park or Bolado Park Event Center. Both provide group areas, and Bolado Park also has horse corrals. If camping under the stars isn’t your style, we recommend staying at Ridgemark Golf & Country Club or Joshua Inn Bed & Breakfast just up the road in Hollister. If you stay longer than a weekend, there’s plenty to see and do in San Benito County including wine tasting, boutique shopping, museums and historic sites, and all kinds of great restaurants to experience. For area travel an up-to-ate event information visit


Way Back When

In England, we are surrounded by historic graveyards. The many churches, which often date back centuries, sit within their own ancient cemetery. In the past, even in cities and towns, people were buried in the area around the Church and this practice did lead to some problems. In 1671, an extract from the memoirs of a local man, talking about Norwich, states: “I observed that most of the church-yards, (though some of them large enough), were filled up with earth, or rather the congestion of dead bodies - one on another for want of earth, even to the very top of the walls, and some above the walls, so as the churches seemed to be built in pits.”


Listen to Glynn Burrows talk about Historic Graveyards on Big Blend Radio!

As our churches and churchyards have been used for burials for centuries, there are many memorials, some of which date back many hundreds of years. The memorials inside the church are usually for the rich, as they were the ones who could be buried By 1819, people in Norwich began to see that it just inside the building and some of these memorials wasn’t possible to keep on burying more and more are amazingly ornate. We do have brasses too and these often date back to the medieval period, but people in the city churchyards as there was no most of the memorials inside the churches will be space, so, a burial ground was established in one from the last four hundred years. of the outlying areas. This was the first nondenominational cemetery established in England Most of the population were laid to rest outside and, and soon after, many towns and cities started to if your ancestors were well off, they may have put follow suit. By the middle of the C19th, most large towns and cites had laid out an area to be used as up a memorial stone. Very few of my ancestors a cemetery and churches within the boroughs were have stones, but some do and when I find one, it really helps to feel that connection as I know closed to burials. Today, there are no burials in Norwich city churches, but every church has an old exactly where my own flesh and blood relation is buried. (If the stone hasn’t been moved). graveyard which is often much higher than the surrounding area, showing just how many people Continued on Next Page… are buried there. PAGE 58

Way Back When

Memorials often give extra information which would be found nowhere else. Information about date of birth, places where the deceased lived or worked, personality, family members and sometimes, with the rich, even a statue of what they looked like and the sort of clothes they wore! A few months ago, I was able to take a party of sisters to the gravesite of their ancestor who had died in 1786. Beside him was his wife and one of their sons. While we were standing there, knowing that their own family had stood around those same graves over 220 years ago, I read them his will. That is what you call real connection with the past. Glynn Burrows is the owner of Norfolk Tours in England. For help or advice about tracing your family history, or if you are thinking about taking a vacation to England, contact Glynn and visit


Way Back When

By Nancy J. Reid Calm and serene in the daytime, but spooky and eerie at night, graveyards and cemeteries are always a fascination around Halloween. Stories of ghosts, spirits that wander the earth, either incapable or not wanting to ‘move on’ give us a glimpse into the past of colorful characters and remind us of those who helped build this country. Reading and researching the names and writings on headstones, connects you to a time when this country was being settled out of a wilderness. The stories are a reminder of plague, floods, drought, war, pestilence and disease-the many hardships faced by our early settlers. Central Louisiana: Historic Rapides Cemetery (pictured above), located on the Pineville side of the Red River. This cemetery has graves dating back to the early 1800s, and is the final resting place for veterans from every conflict from the Revolutionary War to the Vietnam War. There are a number of interesting stories connected to some of those resting here.

The Wells family had settled in the area, along with their relatives the Cuny family. When new families arrived, some with competing financial interests, fighting broke out. There were accusations of vote fixing and unpaid loans that resulted in shouting matches, duals and fist-fights. It was known that Jim Bowie and Norris Wright, the former sheriff, had a violent past, in fact Wright had once shot Bowie and only the intervention of bystanders kept Bowie from killing Wright. Legend has it that it was this altercation that prompted Bowie to have a knife designed that he could wear and quickly use in close combat. At the Vidalia Sanbar Duel, Bowie supported Wells and his nemesis Wright, supported Dr. Thomas Harris Maddox. Wells brought supporters, including Major George McWhorter and General Samuel Cuny. Maddox was supported by Colonel Robert Crain, Carey and Alfred Blanchard, among others.

The duelists each fired two shots, missing their opponent. Wells and Maddox, once friends, shook hands and started to leave. Bowie started to move towards the two dualists as Maddox’s friends also moved to join the group. General Cuny (a Wells Robert Alexander Crain, born Nov. 4, 1790 in supporter) thought this would be a good time to Virginia, died August 27, 1852, is buried here. patch up differences between himself and Col. Colonel Crain took part in the Vidalia Sandbar Fight Crain, reportedly calling out “Col. Crain, this is a on September 19, 1827. This is a brawl that took good time to settle our difficulty.” This was met, not place on a sandbar outside of Natchez, Mississippi, with a handshake, but with Crain firing at Cuny. He right after a duel where Jim Bowie was a supporter missed, but his bullet struck Bowie in the hip. Cuny of one of the dualist, Samuel Levi Wells III. fired at Crain, hitting him in the arm, and Crain fired at Cuny, killing him with a shot to the chest. PAGE 60

Way Back When A confusing but action-packed ten minutes followed! Bowie staggered to his feet, produced a knife and charged at Col. Crain. Crain struck Bowie on the side of his head with his now empty pistol, and Bowie fell to the ground. Wright drew his pistol and shot at the fallen Bowie but missed. Wright then drew his sword and stabbed Bowie in the chest, the blade lodging into Bowie’s sternum. As Wright tried to pull his sword free, Bowie reached up and grabbed his attacker–pulling him down on his Bowie knife. Wright died as another member of the Maddox group stabbed and shot Bowie. Bowie struggled to his feet once again, pulled Wright’s sword from his chest, as the Blanchard brothers (Alfred and Carey) fired at him, shooting him in the arm. Bowie swung round and cut off part of Alfred’s forearm. As the brothers ran, Carey was shot by Major McWhorter. The brawl left two dead, and four wounded. Despite the doctors prognosis, Bowie, stabbed, shot and beaten, lived and the legend of the Jim Bowie Knife was born. The Vidalia Sand Bar Brawl is the only documented fight in which Bowie was known to have employed his Bowie knife design. Among the people buried in Rapides Cemetery are Alexander Fulton, the founder of Alexandria; George Mason Graham, known as the "Father of LSU" for his efforts to help found the forerunner to that university; Pierre Baillio, the builder of Kent Plantation House; Judge Henry Boyce, for whom the town of Boyce is named; and James Madison Wells, the controversial governor of Louisiana during the Civil War Reconstruction years.


Listen to Bobby Hynson, Historical Association of Central Louisiana, talk about preserving the Historic Rapides Cemetery.

James Bowieie PAGE 61

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Way Back When

The prison operated for 30 years, and despite the YUMA, AZ: YUMA TERRITORIAL PRISON violent criminals housed there, the ghost people Nothing will draw immigrants faster than the talk about is a small girl. promise of riches, and the discovery of gold in After the prisoners were California in 1849 spurred the settling of the moved to another prison, west. (Photo above) the prison was occupied As countless crossed the Colorado River by ferry by the Yuma High from Yuma, in search of California gold, a military School. Then, around post was needed and eventually built in Yuma in 1915, hobos and drifters 1850. When gold was discovered on the banks of used the empty cells for the Colorado River, Yuma had it’s own gold rush in lodging while waiting to 1858. Yuma grew, incorporated in 1871 and hop the next train out of became the county seat of Yuma County. The town. During the Great Territorial Prison was authorized and the first seven Depression, homeless families occupied the cells inmates built their own cells and moved in on July and it is believed the small ghost, comes from that 1, 1876. era. She apparently resides in what is known as the “dark cell.” She pinches and pokes those who Some of the most notable inmates were women, wear red. There are also reports of lights turning on like Pearl Hart, the “Lady Bandit” and Maria Moreno and off, things moving about the museum and who shot and killed her brother because he offices and on one occasion, coins from the cash complained about her dancing. On the men’s side register in the gift shop literally flew into the air and there was the likes of the notorious West Texan landed back in the drawer! gunslinger, murderer and horse thief, Barney K. Riggs, who served on the posse that chased after Continued on Next Page… the Earps, after their infamous “Vendetta Ride,” but perhaps the most well-known was Frank Leslie.

Ghost Party! Continued….

“Buckskin” Frank worked for Wyatt Earp at the Oriental Bar in Tombstone, Arizona. He was living with Mollie Williams, a known whisky-loving, singing prostitute. On July 10, 1889 they had a violent quarrel and Frank shot Mollie in the head. Frank then turned and shot witness James Neil. Mollie died but James Neil survived, testified against Frank, and “Buckskin” Frank found himself sentenced to the Yuma Territorial Prison for 25 years. He served only seven years before being paroled. PAGE 62

Way Back When

Ghost Party! Continued…. SAN DIEGO COUNTY, CA: Cabrillo National Monument, Pt. Loma Tight quarters and steep steps down a spiral staircase, and a fantastic view out to the Pacific Ocean await you at the Old Point Loma Lighthouse–but wait, there’s more!

Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery is also known to be haunted. It is believed that the soldiers buried there come out at night and look out to the ocean, searching for ships that might threaten our country. When they feel confident there are none, they return to rest peacefully in their graves.

Visitors report cold spots at the base of the lighthouse spiral staircase, the sound of heavy footsteps coming from the upper rooms, and breathy moans coming from the bedrooms. Some believe the ghost of Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo lurks there, and others believe the spirit to be that of the final lighthouse keeper, Captain Robert Decatur Israel, returning to do his duties. Israel was dismissed as the lighthouse keeper in 1892. He died at age 81 on January 12, 1908 and is buried at the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery, just over a mile away.


Continued on Next Page….

Way Back When

Ghost Party! Continued…. SAN DIEGO COUNTY, CA: Julian & Palomar Mountain, CA The historic gold mining town of Julian, California, is located just about 60 miles inland from Oceanside on Hwy 78, in North San Diego County. Drury D. Bailey, his brothers James and Frank (distant relatives of the Bailey’s that settled on Palomar Mountain), and their cousins, Mike and Webb Julian, ex-Confederate soldiers, founded Julian after making the first gold quartz discovery there on Feb. 20, 1870, nearly five years after the end of the Civil War. Earlier, former slave turned rancher Fred Coleman, found gold in what is now known as Coleman Creek, and almost overnight, Julian became a bustling gold rush town. The Julian Pioneer Cemetery became the resting place for many of the miners and pioneers. (Photo above, Doves & Desperado Re-enactors in the cemetery.)

Palomar Mountain, about one hour east of Julian, is covered in oak, pine, cedar and fir trees with dense ferns covering the floor of a shady forest. The Palomar Mountain Range boasts one of the highest peaks in San Diego County, and Palomar Mountain State Park is famous for the Palomar Observatory and the Hale Telescope. However, the area is famous for another reason, the legend of the “Weir.” While there is an actual weir that helps to control the water flow into Doane Pond, in this case the Weir is a sort of nature man that is occasionally sighted, but disappears when seen. He is said to be caked in mud with small plants growing off the top of his head, a real mountain man that blends into his surroundings with ease. He appears when a person needs help and has been credited with saving drowning children and distracting predatory animals, allowing hikers or campers to escape. He disappears as soon as he knows his assistance is no longer needed.

It is reported that some people have seen a woman in a white night gown walking through the cemetery, while others have reported seeing a woman in Victorian dress with a bonnet on, crying into her handkerchief. The cemetery overlooks the small town of Julian and the clip-clop of a horse drawn carriage adds to the atmosphere of days gone by. Some visitors have also reported feeling a cold energy brush by them when visiting the Eagle & High Peak Mines and taking their mine tour. PAGE 64



Way Back When TUOLUMNE COUNTY: Jamestown, CA The National Hotel - Ghost Party! Continued

The Saga of Henry & Flo In the bustling, gold rush days of the 1800s, a beautiful young woman meets a handsome young lawyer on her trip out west to live with relatives after the death of her grandmother. It was love at first sight for the young couple and by the time the two reached San Francisco, a marriage was planned. Just a few weeks later, the two meet at the National Hotel in Jamestown, staying in separate rooms, but meeting for breakfast each morning to plan their wedding. A beautiful lace gown is made, and Henry presented a diamond ring to Flo on Christmas day. The next morning, as Flo waited for Henry in the dining room, a shot rang out. By most accounts a drunken young man stumbled into the National Hotel and shot Henry as he was coming down the stairs. Flo ran to her love, finding him at the bottom of the stairs lying in a pool of blood. The hotel staff reported Flo sobbing day and night until there was a chilly quiet on New Year’s Eve. Checking on Flo the staff found her dressed in her wedding gown, sitting in a chair at an open window.

Haunted Yosemite National Park Hotels: The Ahwahnee Hotel & the Wawona Hotel Yosemite National Park’s Ahwahnee hotel has reports of the ghost of former operator, Mary Curry Tresidder, who lived on the sixth floor roaming the sixth floor, checking on guests. Mary was the author of Trees of Yosemite, still available today. She died of a heart attack October 29, 1970 in her Ahwahnee Hotel suite. There is also a lone rocking chair seen on the fourth floor rocking, even though that floor does not have a rocking chair. Legend has it that John F. Kennedy once stayed in the suite and a rocking chair was brought in for his comfort.

During the 1920s, a small plane crashed outside Her cause of death was listed as a heart attack and the Wawona Hotel, and the badly injured pilot was since that time, reports by those who party late at taken to Moore Cottage, a guest unit. The pilot died night see a “woman in white” floating in an upstairs and since then, both employees and guests report window as they pass the hotel. Some guests and a ghostly figure dressed as a pilot, with a leather staff report lights flickering, clothing being dumped jacket, head gear and goggles and a white silk from their suitcases, items moving off shelves and scarf – walking down Moore Cottage’s inside stairs. doors slamming. Celebrity psychic Nancy Bradley Continued on Next Page…. has certified the hotel as haunted or spirit-filled. PAGE 67

Way Back When LYON COUNTY: Yerington, NV Ghost Party! Continued “Where the Walker runs down to the Carson Valley plain, There lived a maiden, Darcy Farrow was her name The daughter of old Dundee and fair was she And the sweetest flower that bloomed o'er the range. Her voice was sweet as the sugar candy Her touch was as soft as a bed of goose down. Her eyes shone bright like the pretty lights That shine in the night out of Yerington town.” On his return trip he found the first station he was to rest at, had been raided by the Paiute. He rode on, and at one point at night he rode right through a Written in 1964, inspired by an accident Gillette's ring of Indians headed in the same direction he was little sister Darcy had when she was 12, Tom headed. He finally reached Buckland Station after Campbell morphed the story into a young lover’s making a 380 mile round trip, the longest record for tragedy and set it to a melody by Gillette. John the Pony Express. Later he was to make his Denver, plus many others, made it famous and greatest ride, 120 miles in 8 hours and 20 minutes since that time people search for the grave of Darcy while wounded. The fastest trip ever made for the Farrow, supposedly in Yerington, NV. So, we Pony Express - he was carrying Abraham Lincoln’s thought we would have a look. Inaugural Address as his message. Steve Gillette and Tom Campbell

We visited the Valley View Cemetery, also known as the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery, looking for Darcy Farrow’s grave. We were not successful, but we found some interesting headstones, the most interesting one being that of Five Cents. Nobody seems to know when or where he was born or died, but apparently he was a nice guy… worthy of flowers. (Photo above).

Wovoka (Jack Wilson) and the Ghost Dance Wovoka was a Paiute mystic who was raised in Western Nevada by a white rancher’s family because of the death of his father. He grew up learning Christianity as well as the Paiute beliefs.

Another great story is that of “Pony Bob Haslam”, a young British man who helped build the stations and rode from Fridays Station to Bucklands Station near Fort Churchill, just outside Yerington. Probably the most well-known and respected Pony Express In his own effort to bring peace and hope to his rider, he made the longest uninterrupted ride during people during a time when relations between the the lifetime of the Pony Express. whites and the Paiute and other American Indian Nations were tumultuous and sometimes violent, he The Paiute were on the warpath and war parties developed the Ghost Dance. The Dance was were burning signal fires on every mountain peak dancing and singing in a circle, promising the return the settlers could see. As Haslam came riding into of the Indian ancestors, the revitalization of the the Carson River station he found settlers had earth and the disappearance of the white men, but taken all of the horses at the station to combat the through peaceful ways. As it grew in popularity, Paiute. He rode on, another 15 miles, to the more and more Indians gathered and danced, but Buckland Station, but found his relief rider was too wrote their own meaning and songs into the dance, scared to make the next ride. Pony Bob saddled up making it increasingly militaristic. Eventually the US and rode on to the next station, Carson Sink. Here Calvary was sent to quell the gatherings, which led he got a fresh horse but no water, and rode on. He to the Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890. Wovoka rode on to two more stations, making it to Smith’s was a respected leader and believers in the Ghost Creek, where he rested and picked up the Dance spirituality are convinced the Ghost Dance westbound mail. will eventually reunite them with their ancestors. PAGE 68

Way Back When

The Bakery Gallery – Popular destination offering a delicious variety of cakes, pies, cookies, cupcakes, muffins, Danish pastries, coffee cakes, biscotti, chocolate truffles, desserts, and breads. They serve coffee and espresso and pre-fixe to-go dinners. 215 W. Goldfield Ave., Yerington, NV 89447. Tel: (775) 463-4070,


Success Express

Do You Work in the Food & Drink Industry? Check Out These California Labor Laws By S. Ward Heinrichs Esq., Backstrom & Heinrichs Attorneys at Law, APC



Brinker Restaurant Corporation v. Superior Court, (2012) 53 Cal.4th 1004: Brinker was a case in which restaurant hourly employees filed a class action against their employer for violations of the California meal period regulations and other wage and hour violations. The Supreme Court said that employers have a duty to “provide” meal periods for its qualifying employees. However, employers need not “ensure” that employees get meal periods, as the plaintiffs argued. Rather, they only need to provide the opportunity to receive a meal period. Sometimes, the work load is so heavy that employees cannot find the time to take a meal period. When that situation arises, the employer can be exposed to liability. If it happens to enough employees, the employer may face a class action. If an employer learns that employees feel as though their workload prevents them from taking a meal period, the employer should adjust the scheduling or workload to allow its employees the opportunity to take a meal period if they want to. Once they have a legitimate opportunity to take a meal period, the employer’s risk of a class action lawsuit should diminish markedly.

Listen to Ward Heinrichs on Big Blend Radio!

REST PERIODS: Employers must “authorized and permit all employees to take rest periods.” The Brinker court case helped to clarify what an employer must actually “authorize”. An employee is entitled to a 10 minute uninterrupted rest period if the employee’s shift is at least 3.5 hours. An employee is entitled to a second rest period if his or her shift is at least 6 hours and is entitled to a third rest period if the shift is at least 10 hours long. Employees can elect not to take their rest periods, but allowing them to not take them can create the appearance of violations. Cont. On Next Page…


Success Express Food Industry Cont.


Starting on July 1, 2015 most employers in Employers should track the rest periods with a sign- California must provide at least 3 days of paid sick in/sign-out sheet. However, tracking rest periods leave for its employees who have worked at least can have a downside. If the rest period tracking 30 days within the year. Restaurant employees will, data shows employees who skip or skimp on rest in most cases, qualify for paid sick leave under the periods, then it can be used by a plaintiff’s attorney new California law. to show violations of the rest period requirements. The sick leave accrues at the rate of 1 hour for In that case, the unanswered question is ‘are employees not taking breaks, or shortening breaks, every 30 hours worked. The employer may provide only 24 hours (3 days) of sick leave per year if the of their own free will.’ employer offers its employees three sick days at the beginning of the employment year. Otherwise, TIP POOLS AND TAXATION: Generally, California law forbids the employer from the employer must allow its employees to accumulate up to 6 days of sick leave per year, but taking or sharing in tips (Labor Code §351), and may still limit each employee to the use of only 3 employers must track all tips that they collect for days per year. In that case, any unused balance employees (Labor Code §353). Employer mandated tip pooling is legal, but the house cannot may be carried over to the next year. Employees share in the pooling arrangement. The tip pool must can begin to use accrued sick leave after 90 days of employment. be fair and reasonable. Only those who are in the chain of service can be in the pool. For instance, an employer cannot require servers to include cooks and dishwashers in the pool. CLASS ACTION WAIVERS: One way an employer can potentially avoid class Tips are taxable income. The IRS now requires all action liability is to have a valid class action waiver tips to be declared. Technically, all persons who in an arbitration agreement. (Concepcion v. AT&T receive tips, or a share of the tips, must report it as Mobility, (2011) 563 U.S. 321.) The United States income. However, a common practice is for the Supreme Court ruled that the Federal Arbitration employer to allocate the entire tip to the server who Act (FAA) preempted state law. In other words, if waits on the table. In that case, even when the the parties freely entered into an arbitration server shares the tip, the server is the only person agreement under the FAA, then state laws that who pays tax on the entire tip. The employers might otherwise invalidate the arbitration record’s do not show any other employees in the agreement could not defeat it. Typically, arbitration service chain as persons who receive tips, even agreements require the consumer or employee to though they actually do in tip pooling arrangements. waive the right to take their cases to court. Further, Presumably, they escape tax liability because the they typically require the consumer or employee to employer’s records do not show them collecting waive their right to bring a class action in the any tips. The server then unfairly pays tax on arbitration proceedings. income that the server did not actually take home. The Courts are still wrestling with arbitration agreements and class action waivers in the employment context. Generally, class action waivers appear to prevent employees from filing class action lawsuits, but that is not true in all cases. Ward Heinrichs is a shareholder and named partner of the San Diego based employment law firm, Backstrom & Heinrichs, Attorneys at Law, APC. The firm represents both employers and employees in almost all areas of labor law. He and his firm litigate cases that have been filed in many different parts of California. Visit PAGE 71


Bobbi DePorter and Barbara K. Given, Ph.D., teamed up to make an impact in classrooms with their new book ‘Excellence in Teaching and Learning: The Quantum Learning System.’ The book demonstrates that the integration of the Brain’s Natural Learning Systems with the Bobbi DePorter, President Quantum Learning System creates an impact that transforms the way teachers teach and students of Quantum Learning Network and Co-founder learn. This comprehensive approach empowers of SuperCamp, explains teachers to achieve the desired goal, that students leave high school prepared for success in college Quantum Learning on and career with strong character and citizenship Big Blend Radio. traits.


What is Quantum Learning? Quantum Learning is a system that artfully orchestrates learning and increases teacher effectiveness while facilitating student mastery of rigorous academic content. The Quantum Learning System focuses on what teachers and students do to teach and learn effectively. Teaching and learning are open, dynamic and complex systems. The QL System is flexible enough to embrace changes in education and research from the neuroscience community, while at the same time remaining stable and consistent with its core principles and beliefs.

With today’s more rigorous standards, much is expected from teachers and often there is little direction or support for how to get results. Without new information and professional development tools to improve instruction and develop positive learning cultures, these expectations may be unrealistic. ‘Excellence in Teaching and Learning: The Quantum Learning System’ provides the “how” along with supporting evidence that supplies teachers with the knowledge required for excellence in teaching. Learn more at


Quality of Life

COMMITMENT Make Your Dreams Happen Take positive action. Follow your vision without wavering. Commitment is the breathtaking moment of making a compelling decision, jumping in, and going forward with gusto. Once a commitment is made, indecision is eliminated—there is no more “Should I or shouldn’t I?” … “Will I or won’t I?” A commitment is not made lightly—it’s about making a decision so strong that there is no going back … like a skydiver The 8 Keys of Excellence Are: 1. Live in INTEGRITY. who has jumped from the plane! 2. Acknowledge FAILURE LEADS TO SUCCESS. The decisive act of making a commitment—when 3. SPEAK WITH GOOD PURPOSE. we decide to do “whatever it takes” to reach a goal—sets in motion an energy field that propels us 4. Live in the now. THIS IS IT! 5. Affirm your COMMITMENT. forward on our path. At each step along the way, 6. Take OWNERSHIP. our commitment inspires us to take positive action 7. Stay FLEXIBLE. and overcome obstacles, and pushes us on until 8. Keep your BALANCE. we “make it happen.” As ambassadors for Quantum Learning Network's “8 Keys of Excellence Character Education Program”, the Big Blend Spirit of America Tour embraces the challenge of bringing excellence to 50 million children and young adults. This free program guides young people and families, toward a positive future full of confidence, motivation, creativity, team work, leadership and valuable life principles. See

Watch the video featuring endurance athlete and author Dennis Yang tell his story of Commitment. Founder of Papa Didos Ideals Foundation, Dennis is currently on an epic 11,000 mile ‘Great Reading Run’ around the perimeter of US for children’s literacy and fitness. He started in Southern California and is currently part way through Montana. Along the way he stops at schools, children’s hospitals, and orphanages to motivate children to read and be healthy. This is his second Great Reading Run, with the first run being across the country. Dennis founded the Papa Didos Ideals Foundation with the belief that education is the key to solving this world’s problems. Follow his journey at


Quality of Life


1. ‘Stuff’ can clog your environment. It can be as difficult to move around freely as it is to think clearly. The usual culprit is not having been taught the skill of organizing. The second most likely suspect is not knowing the power of the decision making process. Stuff collects when we fail to decide where it should go.

Listen to Regina Leeds on Big Blend Radio!

A bit of journaling will uncover the reasons for the ‘stockpile of stuff.’ I’ve got journal prompts for every area of the home in One Year to an Organized Life. Why should you spend time examining the No matter what stage of life you’re in, the end of past? Because until you lay down new mental summer is a time of transition. An organized tracks, you are inclined to allow the old causes to plan will make all these transitions a bit easier. produce the same effects. It’s basic psychology. It’s powerful. And it’s in your hands to change. Let me ask you a few questions: - Is your environment chock full of miscellaneous 2. Time is a commodity like food or money. You stuff? use it or lose it. Unlike money, food and any other - Has it been your modus operandi to be late to replaceable commodity, time never gives you a every appointment? second chance. It’s literally now or never with every - Do you make a mental plan to make each fall second of our lives. People squander time for a season the start of a new cycle in your life, only to myriad number of reasons but at the heart of the habitually fall into the same old/same old routines? matter is usually some kind of fear. Maybe showing - Is it difficult for you to imagine success in your up late makes you the star of the show. You new endeavors? unconsciously fear you have no other way to be special. Perhaps making your friends and If you answered ‘yes,’ to any or all of these colleagues wait for you or delaying the delivery of questions, take heart. You’re in the majority of work projects allows you to feel powerful and in readers. control? Or maybe you fear success or failure in the projects assigned to you? If you are late with the Let’s take a quick look at some ways to shake promised results, the pressure to succeed will be up the routines that have run your life up until off you. Once again journaling will reveal the now. reason you are not living life to the full. PAGE 74

Quality of Life Are you spending too much time at various social media forums? Are you going to bed late and over sleeping? Do you rush out the door with a donut in your mouth in the morning? A little planning and a dash of self-control can literally change your day-today experience making you more productive and powerful. Why not give it a whirl for 21 days and see if you like the benefits? 4. Very often it’s our loved ones who hold us back. They do so unwittingly of course because they fear that changes in you will cause seismic changes in their life experience. Change that’s embraced and chosen is a powerful tool. Change This fall will be given to you only once. This is not a that is foisted upon us can be terrifying. Comfort dress rehearsal. Perhaps it was my experience with your loved ones with your words and a solid plan. cancer thirteen years ago that makes me so acutely Yes, you’d like to return to school and get a master’s which means you won’t be free to travel aware of the precious nature of each moment. on a whim or play golf every day but that doesn’t Don’t wait for chemotherapy, an accident, a death mean you don’t love your partner. It means you’re in the family or any life emergency to drive this trying to become the best you can be in life and that point home. Make a plan. What do you want or need to accomplish? What are the individual steps means a more fulfilling relationship. Why? Because you will have to take to make this goal a reality? As fulfilled people are happy and that’s a lot sexier than anything for sale at Victoria Secret this fall! you look at the steps, do you have what it takes? Are you strong enough to do the work? Have you met the underlying financial demands? Should you Next month we’re on the inevitable march to the postpone or charge ahead? Make a plan and honor long, holiday season. Allow the natural energy that fills your mind and body when you realize that fall is it. You’ll always have the memories from this time to remind of you of the fall you finally took control of coming to infuse you with a drive to be more productive, healthier and happier than you have your life. ever been. 3. If your life has never supported your wishes, dreams or goals, what’s going on? Are you eating the right food? Are you drinking enough water? Do you exercise each day? Do you have spiritual beliefs that nurture and support you? These are all key ingredients in your success. If you falter in one or more you can of course still be a success. It will simply be more difficult. Take a look at the practical side of life.

An organized environment will enhance your journey. It will provide a springboard for greater accomplishment, joy and meaning. What have you got to love but your old fears and that same old/same old routine that’s boring you to tears? Professional organizer Regina Leeds, known as The Zen Organizer™ has brought order and peace to home and work environments across the country for over 27 years. She is the author of 10 books on organizing including New York Times bestseller ‘One Year to an Organized Life’ and the newest release ‘Rightsize! Right Now!’ The latter presents a sane plan for rightsizing your possessions to fit your home and life and craft a move in 8 weeks. A former actress Regina delights in giving lectures on the benefits of Zen Organizing™. A native of Brooklyn, New York she now lives in Los Angeles with her rescue pup Charlie. Visit


Quality of Life

By fashion designer Aggie Garcia Years ago, almost every woman knew how to sew, darn socks and repair torn clothes. Sewing was also taught in high school home economics classes. These classes are no longer offered in high school. In the busy world we live in, and with more women working, home sewing has long been forgotten. Women today don’t have the time to sew or never learned when they were young and living at home. So what do you do when the pant hem comes undone or a pant pocket has torn apart? What if the length of the pants or jeans you want to wear tonight is too long and there is no time to take them to an alterations person? How do you fix the tear on your children’s pants or jackets? I have seen pant hems stapled or duct taped. I am going to share with you a product that no household should be without. Go to your neighborhood fabric store and pick up a roll of Stitch Witchery. Many larger chain grocery stores will also carry this product under the name of fusible webbing. This product is amazing and the only thing you need to apply it is an iron. This fusible webbing comes on a roll and can be cut to any length you need. For a hem that has come undone, simply cut the amount you need and place between the two layers of fabric.

Set your iron on medium heat and press until the webbing melts and creates a bond after cooling. For delicate fabrics, be sure and place a cloth on top of the garment. When hemming jeans you can use high heat. You can even shorten pants with this product. Easy to read directions come with the product and you can even go online for a list of other uses. It is permanent and if it does come loose after several washings, simply reapply. I have a friend that doesn’t even own a sewing machine and she managed to make curtains for her kitchen using stitch witchery. It is not expensive and will save you time and money. If a seam comes undone, you can fold the seam to one side and place a thin piece of the product between the seam and garment and apply with your iron until you can take it to your dry cleaners for repair. Another product that will be of great help to you are fabric patches. These square patches come in black, several shades of denim and tan. You can repair tears and to keep it invisible, place on the wrong side of the garment. Several of my male clients have expressed how valuable they are. Everyone should also carry a couple of safety pins in their handbag or wallet. If the zipper on your pant breaks, you can always use a safety pin to hold it up until you get home. These are simple solutions that will be of great help to you! Aggie Garcia is a San Diego based fashion designer who specializes in designing bikini and figure competition suits, and is the owner of Illusions by Aggie. Visit:


Quality of Life

LAUNDRY REVOLUTION! Wash It Clean & Green with MyGreenFills Review by Lisa D. Smith

I have always had a problem with the ingredients in laundry detergent. Going down the ‘chemical aisle’ in the grocery store is a complex experience trying to find an authentic non-toxic soap. Trust me, the label may say the soap is safe, but with one wash I’m usually scratchin’ and a sniffin’. It is such a relief to have found MyGreenFills!

Toxic-free, planet friendly products like MyGreenFills just make good, healthy and economic sense. I can’t wait to try their I’ll Fly Away Insect Repellant and 100% Naturally Non-Toxic Sunscreen. Join the Green Laundry Revolution and get Your Free Laundry Soap Jug at

MyGreenFills has a wonderful line of all-natural, non-toxic, hypoallergenic laundry soap products that include unscented laundry soap, fabric softener, and colorsafe brightener. The products have no dyes or perfumes, are hot and cold water safe, cruelty-free and vegan too! Your first order comes with a laundry jug for each product, plus a little recyclable refill bag for each powder that you mix with water in the jug (it lasts up to 50 loads!). I was excited to try MyGreenFills, and was thrilled to see my clothes come out of the washer bright and clean, and amazingly static-free after the dryer! There was no fake perfume smell and no itching! They also have a powerful enzyme stain remover, which has been put to some good use! After your initial order, you can order refill products online at and they send them to you, shipping free! They know how to ‘Pay It Forward’ too – they send an extra laundry jug with your first order so you can gift it to a friend, and, MyGreenFills will send them a free refill! No more shopping in the chemical aisle! No more used laundry jugs going into the landfill. Did you know that our country uses over 1 billion plastic laundry jugs a year? We know we need to get on ‘The Green Bandwagon’ and I applaud companies like MyGreenFills who provide a cost-friendly solution. PAGE 77

Quality of Life

Rock Talk by Marilee Strech Herkimer "Diamonds" are useful for accurate dream recall and beautiful spiritual dreams, as well as allowing one to see through deceptions and make connections with other people on a spiritual level.


Listen to Marilee Strech on Big Blend Radio. Diamonds? No, but they sure do sparkle like diamonds! These sparkly crystals from Herkimer County, New York are actually quartz crystals, formed in pockets of the hard dolostone along a sixty mile corridor of the Mohawk River and its tributaries. This rock formation outcrops on both sides of the river, in farmer's fields, in the canal locks and waterfalls, and can be accessed by several fee dig sites in the area. Herkimer "Diamonds" are unusual among quartz crystals in that they are doubly terminated with eighteen faces on each and every crystal regardless of size--- from almost microscopic to crystals that are over three inches in length.

These special quartz crystals affect the body on the deepest level, opening the aura and chakras to spiritual healing, as well as giving access to the user’s own unlimited potential for growth. They are manifestations of pure solidified spiritual Light and work well with moldavite, danburite, and celestite. They are associated with the Zodiac sign Aries and the Planet Sun. If you would like to collect your very own Herkimer "Diamond", there are two fee digs in Middleville, New York, the Ace of Diamonds Mine and the Herkimer Diamond Development Corp. Mine, open to the public from May 1 through October 1. Be sure and check out their days and hours of operation on line before you make that trip! An avid rock hound, Marilee Strech owns Crossroads Treasures, a gift shop that features a variety of rocks and gems, beads and jewelry, plants and books, and is just down the hill from Julian, a popular mountain destination Southern California. Visit