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February 8, 2013
CCC, city ink deal for Main St. parcel The purchase will “severely limit” the city’s budget for future improvements, said City Manager Gary Napper in his staff report, but it allows the city to regain control of one of the last undeveloped parcels in the Town Center. In 2003, CCC bought the smaller .64-acre parcel for $340,000, and renovated the old Pioneer Inn building to house their administrative offices. In 2006, the church bought the adjoining 1.66 acres for $1.4 million and made plans to build a four-building, 42,000 square foot worship center covering the whole 2.3 acres. But, the use was not in compliance with the Town Center
A win/win for city and church I am very pleased to announce that following months of negotiation, the Clayton City Council has voted unanimously to purchase the 1.66 acre parcel in the Clayton Town Center from the Clayton Community Church for a mutually-acceptable price of $1 million. Escrow will close before March 15. The purchase and sale agreements were signed following the special meeting of the council on Jan. 31 with
See Land Sale page 4
See Mayor, page 8 Tamara Steiner photo
CLAYTON COMMUNITY CHURCH HAS AGREED TO SELL the undeveloped 1.66-acre portion of their downtown property to the city of Clayton for $1 million, abandoning their controversial plans to build a worship center in the city’s commercial center. The church has acquired a non-commercial site on the hill next to Mt. Diablo Elementary School and will build there instead.
Fire station closure is hot topic for residents
TAMARA STEINER Clayton Pioneer
The city of Clayton and the Clayton Community Church finalized a deal last week that both sides called a win/win. The city will purchase the larger of the
church’s two downtown parcels – 1.66 acres between Main Street and Clayton Road – for $1 million. They also received a first right of refusal to purchase the adjacent smaller parcel where the old Pioneer Inn houses church offices and meeting rooms.
The deal will assure the future commercial development of the Town Center and allow the church to complete the purchase of a 4.5-acre building site on the hill next to Mt. Diablo Elementary School – a site Robinson says is less controversial and better
suited to the needs of the church. The $1 million purchase price and $30,000 in closing costs will come from the city’s Downtown Economic Development Project Account, from interest earnings and from some other project savings.
Clayton’s dancing royalty, husband and wife team two-step into the limelight PEGGY SPEAR Clayton Pioneer
CCFPD FIRE CHIEF Daryl Louder details the district’s plans for emergency response at the community meeting Jan. 23 DENISEN HARTLOVE Clayton Pioneer
More than 100 local residents crowded into a meeting room at the Clayton Library on Jan. 23 for a heated discussion surrounding the closure of Fire Station 11, the city’s only station, expressing concern on how their families will continue to be protected. County Supervisor Karen Mitchoff, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Chief Daryl Louder, and Pat Frost, the County Director of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) all addressed the issue,
See Station 11, page 6
Between Olympic Bronze Medal-winning hometown heroes Kara Kohler and Kristian Ipsen, and Clayton Valley Charter High School’s outstanding football season, Clayton has enjoyed more than its share of athletic success this year, You can add two more names to the championship list: in January, Clayton residents Craig Johnson and wife Joan Lundahl won second place in the 2013 World Championships of Country Dance, held at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. Lundahl also won first place in the Advanced/All-Stars Country Two-step Jack & Jill and is currently ranked number one on the Country Two-step Tour. Partners since 2004, the duo has earned a combined total of four World Championship titles and is the 2012 United Country Western Dance Council Worlds Points Champions for Couples Crown.
See Two-step, page 3
What’s Inside Around Town . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Classified . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
A JUBILANT MAYOR JULIE PIERCE and CCC Pastor Shawn Robinson sign the sales agreement for the $1 million deal.
Young at heart: Helix wants Concord youth to step up PEGGY SPEAR Clayton Pioneer
It makes a certain amount of sense that one of the top items on the Bay Area’s oldest mayor’s agenda is to involve more young people in the city of Concord. “I want to acquaint young people with local government,” says Dan Helix, 83. “They learn about the state and federal governments in schools, but so
See Helix page 7
JOAN LUNDAHL AND CRAIG JOHNSON took second place in the world country dance competition in Nashville in January. The Clayton couple have been dance partners since 2004.
Club News . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Community Calendar . . . . .12 Design and Décor . . . . . . . .13 Directory of Advertisers . . . . .5
DVMS Reporter . . . . . . . . . .9 Fashion Over 50 . . . . . . . . .14 Fitness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Garden Girl . . . . . . . . . . . . .16
Performing Arts . . . . . . . . . .13 Pets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Police Activity Report . . . . .15 Real Estate . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
CONCORD MAYOR DAN HELIX
Safety Zone . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Sports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Teen Speak . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9 Weather Words . . . . . . . . . . .9
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February 8, 2013
Around Town Mittones celebrate their 60th anniversary
Two Clayton scholars named to Dean’s List
Diamond Terrace celebrates 10 years in Clayton and still going strong It was a beautiful winter Saturday afternoon last month when Diamond Terrace Retirement Community celebrated 10 years in the Clayton community with a reception. The first resident of Diamond Terrace, Lora Ingalls, now 93-½ years young, announced to the crowd of over 150 residents, family, friends and staff that “I have been here 10 years and one week!” Administrator Ellen Diamond, who has been at the Clayton facility for about three years, was the mistress of ceremonies for the brief ceremony that honored eight ladies who are still at Diamond Terrace and have been residents for 10 years. Besides Ingalls, Lu Brown, Marge Crawford, Vonna Rainbow, Winnie Reed, Wilma Stone and Marie Sutton were conspicuously wearing yellow rose corsages. Dottie Bornemann is the eighth “10 year” but wasn’t on hand for the reception. Clayton Mayor Julie Pierce and councilman Jim Diaz circulated around to each table greeting the residents and their families. Steve Swan brought his Frank Sinatra Tribute Show to the festivities performing some Old Blue Eyes favorites.
Jay Bedecarré photo
LORA INGALLS (RIGHT), NOW 93-½ YEARS YOUNG, moved into the brand new Diamond Terrace Retirement Community in January 2003. Ten years later Ingalls and seven other newcomers in 2003 are still living in the Clayton facility, which celebrated 10 years in operation last month with a reception. Administrator Ellen Diamond (left) was mistress of ceremonies.
Kimberly Cerruti of Clayton made the Dean’s List at the University of Portland for Kimberly Cerruti the fall semester 2012. Kimberly is a junior, majoring in nursing and the daughter of Tammy and Ron Cerruti of Clayton. Another Claytonian, James Magas, a senior majoring in mechanical engineer also made the list which requires a 3.5 grade point average to be named to the list.
KinderCare kids fingerprinted Chrobak Golden Anniversary
Claire and Richard Mittone of Clayton celebrated their 60th anniversary this month with a family dinner at the Black Angus Restaurant. The couple met at a teenage club dance. They dated for four years before marrying on Jan. 31, 1953 at St. Cyril’s Catholic
Church in Oakland. The Mittones have 7 children: Linda, Leslie, Lorie, Lance, Larry, Anthony and Brett; 21 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Most live in the area. They will celebrate further with family on a cruise to Alaska in July.
MARSH CREEK KINDERCARE and the Contra Costa County Sheriff Safety ID Program teamed up on Jan. 26 to fingerprint and photograph local children for parents’ home safety records. Clayton Police Department cadets assisted with the 86 participants.
PETE AND CAROL CHROBAK celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at the Lafayette Park Hotel with family and friends. Pictured are the couple and their four children. From left, Lori, David, Carol and Pete, Michael and Deb Chrobak.
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February 8, 2013
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Mackenzie Ayers will dance for AIDS education PAMELA WIESENDANGER Clayton Pioneer
After a six-day trek climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with its elevation of over 19,000 feet, staying on her feet to dance for 26 hours will be a walk in the park. What brought Clayton resident Mackenzie Ayers to Africa last summer is the same cause that she will be dancing for on Feb. 16 and 17 in Dance Marathon: educating people about HIV and AIDS. Ayers is participating in this fundraiser held by the Pediatric AIDS Coalition (PAC) at the University of California, Los Angeles. “It’s a really hard thing, but one day of your life affects kids all over the world,” Ayers says. Ayers is in her second year of study at UCLA with a double major in political science and psychology. She is interested in government and wants to be a psychologist. “I love to hear people’s issues; I love to help people.”
Clayton resident Mackenzie Ayers taught HIV/AIDS awareness in a rural village in Africa during the summer of 2012. On Feb. 16 and 17, she will dance the night away to raise funds for the fight against pediatric HIV and AIDS.
Though she admits, initially, it was for selfish reasons, to gain world experience, that she volunteered with Support for International Change. SIC educates
Two-step, from page 1 It’s particularly impressive since couples dance competitions have been steadily gaining in popularity, thanks to the exposure from such T.V. programs as “Dancing With the Stars” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” The two have traveled worldwide in competitions, often serving as judges or performing for other dancers. It’s a wonderful way to “spend my retirement,” says Lundahl, who left her administrative position at Foothill Middle School in Walnut Creek almost four years ago.
They also teach dance at Levity Fitness in Clayton, and other Bay Area studios. Country Western is just one of the styles of dancing the duo performs, as competitions require a mastery of such dances as the Triple Two-step, the Polka, the Cha-Cha, the East Coast Swing, Night Club Twostep, and the West Coast Swing – the official dance for the state of California. Once viewed as an “artistic” pastime, couples dancing now enjoy athletic status at an Olympic level, requiring keen
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Happy Valentines Day to our readers and advertisers from all of us at the Clayton Pioneer
over the world, it’s (HIV and AIDS) a huge problem. It’s sad; it’s so preventable.” Now, Ayers is the campus coordinator for SIC and could not wait to sign up for Dance Marathon. The focus of PAC is pediatric HIV and AIDS. For the last 11 years, the marathon has contributed more than $3 million to its beneficiaries: Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Project Kindle and UCLA AIDS Institute. The marathon brings together thousands of students, parents, alumni, community members and celebrities. Dancers learn more about the disease, meet young children affected and join the fight for a cure. “I’m literally taking a stand,” Ayers says, against pediatric HIV and AIDS.
school and community groups in Africa about HIV, tests residents and provides care for those who tested positive. “It changed me forever. All
To donate on behalf of Mackenzie Ayers, go to payitsquare.com/ collect-page/9941. For more information about the event and PAC, go to www.dancemarathon.ucla.edu.
physical fitness and the ability to dance in high heels. “I’m in better shape than I’ve ever been in, and I need it to do what we do,” Lundahl says. She had just left Foothill when she suffered a recurrence of breast cancer. Her dance career helped her through the treatment and reconstructive surgeries. “I kept telling myself I had to get healthy, because I needed to dance.” The next step on their dance card is the Calgary Dance Stampede in Canada in April. The two were “white-hatted” and made “honorary Calgarians” after winning the Dance Stampede in 2011. The iconic white
hat is bestowed on visiting dignitaries, and Johnson and Lundahl share the honor with U.S. presidents, the Dalai Lama and even Will and Kate. It’s not a cheap pastime, as Lundahl’s costumes can cost as much as $3,000, and travel expenses can escalate. But between their work as coaches and judges – plus some prize money – Lundahl says they “happily break even.” “I am passionate about dancing,” she says. “When I was being treated for cancer, I told myself ‘this isn’t how my life is going to end. I have more to do.’” And she and Craig are doing it, one two-step at a time.
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Shelly Gwynn (925) 207-3069
Assisting More Buyers & Sellers than Anyone Else* *Statistics based on Clayton closed by sales volume (1/2012 – 12/2012). Data by Trendgraphix
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Land sale, from page 1 Specific Plan (TCSP) which calls for commercial development in the town center, and resistance to the project reached the boiling point when the Environmental Impact Report detailed the parking and traffic issues that the project would create. “It was a public relations nightmare,” said one source close to the church, who asked not to be named. “The last thing a church wants is that kind of controversy.” By moving their plans to the hillside property, Robinson hopes to quiet the controversy and become the “blessing to the community” that he has said he always wanted to be. The hillside property will present both opportunities and hurdles, said Robinson. By building
outside the Town Center, they won’t be required to construct the more expensive two-story buildings nor provide the retail space required by the TCSP And the hillside parcel is big enough to keep all parking on site. This was a huge hot button with the previous plans which relied on public parking to meet their parking requirements. He expects to work with the school district to plan a shared agreement which would increase parking at MDES. He believes access from Oak Street will help relieve before- and after-school congestion. However, engineering the hillside and constructing a bridge to give the property Oak Street access will be a challenge and expensive. Robinson says he has met
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with little resistance from the neighbors at the new site. Charmetta Mann and Janet Easton who live directly across Pine Hollow Court from the new church site were initially opposed to the idea. But, they feared the property would be sold to a developer for high density housing and say the church is a better choice. “It’s a one story building and won’t block our view of the mountains,” said Easton. “And it’s better than a 30-unit condo project.” The church expects to close escrow on the 4.5-acre hill property by June 15, but they still need to raise another $350,000 to cover the closing costs. “For everyone that didn’t want the church downtown, this is your chance,” quipped Robinson. “You can help us raise the $350,000 we need to close on the new property.”
February 8, 2013
Clayton hawk returns home to soar again On Jan. 24, Lindsay Wildlife Museum hospital staff released an adult female sharp-shinned hawk back to the wild. Her liftoff near the Clayton Library was a marvelous sight, says wildlife rehabilitation director Susan Heckly, as the bird took off strongly and flushed a flock of songbirds out of the trees as she rose through the air. The hawk had been found in Clayton at the end of December, unable to stand and with an injured wing. Xrays showed she had fractured her clavicle (a bone that helps create the shoulder joint). Injuries like these are especially serious in birds that need to fly well enough to maneuver around trees, but rest and immobilization allowed this hawk to heal completely. If you find an injured bird or animal, contact Lindsay Wildlife Museum at 925-935-1978.
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February is American Heart Month according to the American Heart Association. Please help Anna Chan, The Lemon Lady, celebrate by sharing seasonal fruit with a nearby food pantry. THINK HEALTHY. THINK ORANGE. Oranges, lemons, mandarins and kiwi are in season and bowing the boughs of trees across the city. Share the fruit or volunteer time to collect it. February is also The Lemon Lady’s 5th anniversary of her lemon project. She has collected over 10,000 boxes of produce
equaling $1 million worth of fruits and vegetables that she donated to local charities to feed the hungry. It takes a simple act of kindness to bring fresh fruit to a food pantry. One person. One tree. It all begins somewhere. The Lemon Lady asks, “Have YOU picked a tree today?” Here are her five simple tips to a happier, healthier heart: 1. Walking is healthy exercise for your heart. Go for a walk around the neighborhood today. You will find many fruit trees bursting with ripe oranges, lemons and other citrus.
What are you waiting for...? For more information or to contact Anna Chan, The Lemon Lady, go to thelemonlady.blogspot.com.
ed Pend rice P Full day! 1 in
2. Making friends is healthy for your heart. I have met thousands of fruit tree owners in the Bay Area. They are kind and generous souls who love to share. Make new friends today. 3. Picking fruit is healthy exercise for your heart. 4. Eating fresh oranges is healthy nutrition for your heart. 5. The joy of giving and sharing is a healthy emotion for your heart.
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I N S P I R E D R E A L E S TAT E
February 8, 2013
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Directory of Advertisers
Jerry Alan Johnston P.O. Box 1246 6200 Center Street, Suite H, Clayton, CA 94517 TAMARA
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CLASSIFIEDS Classified rates per insertion: $48 for first 30 words, $.40 each additional word Non-profit: $24 for first 30 words, $.20 each additional word To place your classified ad over the phone, call the office at (925) 6720500 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mon.-Fri. Or, you may fax your typewritten ad and credit card information to (925) 672-6580. All classifieds must be paid for in advance by credit card (Master Card or Visa) We will not accept any ad that discriminates on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, nationality, family status or disability. The Clayton Pioneer
reserves the right to reject any advertising we believe is unsuitable. LET US KNOW Weddings, engagements, anniversaries, births and deaths all weave together as part of the fabric of our community. Please let us know of these important events. We ask only that the announcement be for a Clayton resident. You will find the appropriate form for your announcement on our Website. Attach your photo to the form. Make sure the image size you are about to send is at least 3 MB but not bigger than 6MB. The only format we accept is JPG. You can also mail or bring your print to the office and we can scan it for you. Also on our Website are forms for submitting Community Calendar items and press releases for your organization. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR The Clayton Pioneer welcomes letters from our readers. As a general rule, letters should be 250 words or less and submitted at least one week prior to publication date. Letters concerning current issues will have priority. We may edit letters for length and clarity. All letters will be published at the editor’s discretion. Please include your name, address and daytime telephone number. We will not print letters from “anonymous.” E-mail your letter in a Word document to email@example.com. Letters MUST be submitted via E-mail.
Serving Northern California for Over 30 Years
Jerry Johnston of Clayton died on January 23. Jerry was born in Darlington, Wis. on May 20, 1959. He graduated from Mineral Point High School in Mineral Point, Wis. After high school, Jerry attended the University of Wisconsin, Platteville, where he earned a degree in mechanical engineering. Outside of his career with Clorox, Jerry was very involved in the community as a youth soccer and CYO Track and Field coach. With his love of
Why do you read the Pioneer? “Hi Tamara: We want to let you know how much we enjoy the Clayton Pioneer. It really makes us feel connected to the community. When we take the mail out of our mailbox and the Clayton Pioneer is there, it's the first thing we read. Thanks for a great publication.” BARBARA AND RON JACOBS
Classified TUTORS NEEDED
Diablo Valley Literacy Council needs English tutors. Tutor training classes: March 9, 12, 16. Must attend all three sessions. Nominal fee to cover training and material costs. Volunteer time commitment of one or two hours per week. For more information, go to dvlc.tripod.com. To register, call 685-3881 or send email to DVLC4ESL@gmail.com.
Flower Gardening by Nicole Hackett Perennial, ornamental, rose and container care. Keep your garden in flowers this year with monthly fertilizing and pruning visits. Email for consultation or details. Gardengirl94517@yahoo.com.
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sports came his devotion to the Green Bay Packers and Wisconsin Badgers. The Johnstons have been residents of Clayton for 11 years. Jerry is survived by his wife of 29 years, Gwen Johnston; his two children Bryan and Amanda; his parents Bracken and Patricia Johnston (of Wisconsin) and his sister Marcia Gratz (of Wisconsin). He is preceded in death by his brothers Bruce, Scott and David Johnston.
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WANTED Come join Mazzei Realty! Currently interviewing and hiring new and experienced real estate agents. Call 693-0757 for details. Real Estate Agents Be Successful! Lynne French is expanding and interviewing for a few agents. Call her today 672-8787.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED Help Fight Hunger Anna Chan – AKA: The Lemon Lady needs your help! Weekly commitment appreciated. For more info and contact numbers, go to thelemonlady.blogspot.com. Hospice of the East Bay Help needed at Hospice of the East Bay Concord Thrift Shoppe located at 5350 Clayton Road, Concord. 6749072. For information contact Carmen Siems, volunteer coordinator at 887-5678 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Clayton Historical Society Museum The Clayton Historical Society Museum needs a greeter for two hours per month from 2-4 p.m. Wednesdays or Sundays. Call the museum at 672-0240 and leave your name. Clayton Community Library Needs volunteers. Minimum age 13. Minimum commitment is 6 months. Some training provided. Contact: Arlene at 673-9777 or email@example.com.
Check out the Clayton Pioneer’s new website: claytonpioneer.com
Dining and Entertainment Clayton Club Saloon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .673-0440 Cup O’Jo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-5105 Memo's . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .914-0395 Oakhurst Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9737, ext. 205 Financial and Insurance Services Held, Chris – Morgan Stanley Smith Barney . . . .930-3815 Leraul, Luciann – CPA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .518-9076 Littorno, Richard – Attorney at Law . . . . . . . . . . .432-4211 Miller, Tom – CPA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .354-1385 Prosperitas Wealth Management . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-7700 Van Wyck, Doug – State Farm Insurance . . . . . .672-2300 Funerals Ouimet Funeral Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .682-4242 Home and Garden Abbey Carpet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .686-9901 Clear Splash Pool Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .216-6245 Diablo Lawnscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .381-3757 Diablo View Cleaning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-8300 Flooring City . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .680-8220 Interiors Panache . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-7920 Just Floors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .681-4747 Navlet’s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .681-0550 Nichols Landscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9955 The Maids . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .798-6243 Utopic Gardens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .524-0055 Waraner Bros. Tree Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .831-2323 Waraner Tree Experts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .250-0334 Mailing Services The UPS Store . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .689-6245 Optometry Foresight Optometry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-4100 Pet Services Monte Vista Veterinary Hospital . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-1100 Pittsburg Pet Resort . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .432-7387 Rodie's Feed and Pet Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-4600 Real Estate and Mortgage Services French, Lynne – Windermere Real Estate . . . . . .672-8787 Howard, Don – Better Homes Realty . . . . . . . . . .408-3184 Klock, Leigh – Coldwell Banker . . . . . . . . . . . . . .212-5593 Laurence, Pete – RE/MAX Realty . . . . . . . . . . . .890-6004 Lopez, Stephanie – Coldwell Banker . . . . . . . . . .932-7329 Mazzei, Matt – Mazzei Realty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .693-0757 Stojanovich, Jennifer – Better Homes Realty . . .567-6170 Vujnovich, George - Better Homes Realty . . . . . .672-4433 Recreation and Fitness Clayton Valley Bowl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .689-4631 Earthquake Arabians . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .360-7454 East Bay Regional Park District . . . . . . . . . .888-327-2757 Kali Ball276-0845 Senior Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Diamond Terrace Senior Retirement Living . . . . .524-5100 Montecito – Oakmont Senior Living . . . . . . . . . . .852-6702 Services, Other ComputersUSA! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9989 Net Solutions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-6029 Recycling Center & Transfer Station . . . . . . . . . .473-0180 Travel Cruise Adventures Unlimited . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .935-7447 Travel to Go . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9840
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Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
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Q. I recently made an offer on a property. I competed with another buyer. The sellers said they would accept my offer when I agreed to raise my offer to over the asking price. After we agreed on the price we proceeded to negotiate other terms like occupancy, limits on repair costs, etc. Before all papers were signed, the sellers received another higher offer and accepted that one. They had promised my realtor over the phone that they would only work with ours. Do I have any recourse? A. I am sorry this happened to you. I would say it was rude of the realtor and the seller but not illegal. Verbal agreements to sell real estate are not binding. To be legally enforceable, a contract to buy real estate must be agreed to in writing by both buyer and seller. Sometimes buyers and sellers engage in several rounds of counter-offers back and forth before they arrive at a contract that is mutually acceptable. It could take days. It is tempting to negotiate verbally until everything is agreed upon, then put it
REAL ANSWERS in writing and all parties sign it. But it is critical to remember that every counter offer is legally considered a new offer. There is an expression in real estate that “time is of the essence.” This is true in all aspects of buying and selling property. When trying to put together an offer, stay on course and get everything in writing as soon as possible, even if it is inconvenient. Then make sure acceptance has been delivered and initialed by the party of the previous counter offer. Q. Our friend recommended a realtor to help us sell our house. It is a cousin of theirs who works a differ-
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my heart attack between the hours of 2 and 8 p.m.,” she said at the Jan. 23 meeting. Officials cast blame for the fire station closures on the $32 million decrease in revenues to the district from recessionfueled property tax decreases, as well as the failure to pass Measure Q last November. Measure Q proposed adding $16.8 million annually to district coffers via a $75 increase in property taxes. Although Clayton was one of the few towns that failed to pass the measure – 52 percent of city voters said “nay” – the total countywide yes votes were in the majority, but fell short of the 66 percent supermajority vote necessary to pass tax increases in California.
ward, that if we just reform pensions, we don’t have this problem. Because pension reform can only affect new hires. “Pension reform would not have kept the Clayton station open,” she said. Jim Derickson lives with his family in the Clayton Valley Highlands, and works as an Alameda County firefighter. He sympathizes with both sides in the debate. “I can’t really tell you [whose fault it is],” he said of the closures. “One thing I noticed when I voted, right there it said it’s going to cost $75 a year. It sounded pretty expensive if you really hadn’t thought it through, if you’re not someone who used 911 a lot. “If you no longer have these services, you won’t realize there’s a problem until you need it,” he said. “Then you realize what the problem is, and at that point it’s too late.”
Lynne French is the Broker/Owner of Windermere Lynne French & Associates and a Clayton resident. For any real estate needs or questions contact her at 925672-8787, email Lynne@LynneFrench.com, or stop in at 6200 Center Street in Clayton.
Associate Vice President Financial Advisor
of-area agent, he or she might not hear of the latest listings immediately. Even when the sellers wait several days before listening to offers, it’s in the buyer’s best interest to have as much lead time as possible to prepare to compete with other buyers. Agents are often nervous about working with an unknown agent. If you’re making an offer in competition against other buyers, the seller’s agent could favor buyers who are working with a local agent. Realtors are like many people, they like to work with people they know. A trustworthy agent will refer his or her clients to a local specialist if he or she has any concerns about being able to represent the client’s interests. They can receive a referral fee from the agent they referred. And that is a win-win.
Boyce Nichols - Owner
Station 11, from page 1
Chris J. Held
ent market in the East Bay. This agent has only sold one house in Clayton, a year ago. She is very nice and said her location doesn’t matter because all the realtors have the same MLS system. What do you think? A. I hope I don’t appear self serving but I truly believe one should use a local realtor. A local specialist can educate you about local property values and this can help a seller to select the correct list price. Correct pricing knowledge is critical if you are buying, too, so you don’t pay too much. The statistical information that an agent can access from a computer is often insufficient and can be misleading. An agent should have seen the comparable sales in person rather than just on the computer. Another issue to consider is that local agents know one another personally. This camaraderie can work in a buyer’s or sellers’ best interest. The local real estate buzz can work for you. When you are buying in a competitive market, most of the good homes that are listed sell quickly and with multiple offers. If you are working with an out-
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detailing their plans for keeping local residents covered when emergencies occur. The Contra Costa County Fire Protection District – known as ConFire – closed four fire stations in central Contra Costa County, including Number 11, on Jan. 15, leaving 24 stations in operation to cover its 300 square miles. ConFire employs about 250 personnel, from fire inspectors to paramedics. According to Louder, now that Station 11 has been “destaffed,” the team from Station 22 near the Crystyl Ranch housing development will work out of the Clayton station during part of the district’s peak call hours of 2 p.m. until 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday. The Clayton station will stand empty on Sundays. He hopes this rotation of staff will be able to keep call response time for the area as close to the previous six minutes, 34-second average time as possible. But already, the average response time to calls in the area has lengthened almost a minute and a half to what Louder estimates to be eight minutes, 18 seconds. That extra 104 seconds may not seem like a long time. But according to the National Fire Protection Association, in cases of cardiac arrest, stretching response time to eight minutes for basic life support to be administered can mean the difference between a healthy recovery and permanent brain damage. Frost said that time waiting for emergency personnel to
arrive time can be bridged by anyone willing and able to perform CPR. “[CPR] can be provided by a bystander, a law enforcement person with an automated external defibrillator device, a firefighter, or just the public, like someone in the home,” she said. AMR TO RELOCATE AMBULANCES
In response to the closures, American Medical Response is adjusting the locations where its ambulances are stationed to make them more rapidly available in case of a medical emergency when local firefighters are out of the area at other calls. “I think it’s important for the community to understand that the EMS agency is working with the fire and the ambulance providers to ensure that fire is going to the most critical 911 calls,” said Frost. “The vast majority of 911 calls are not critical.” AMR’s current area response time averages seven-to-eight minutes. Frost said there were no plans to increase the number of ambulances to make up for the stretching of ConFire resources. “There is no ability for the county to add ambulances, because there is no funding for that. What we’re doing is we’re maximizing the efficiency of the ambulances we have.” Clayton resident Deanna Jakel isn’t impressed by the new measures being put in place. She remembers when Station 11 was first built in order to ensure locals in both old and new areas of Clayton were protected. “I’ll just make sure to have
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ARE PENSIONS THE PROBLEM? Debate blazed as to the reason for the District’s money troubles. “You guys are saying it’s a revenue issue, but it’s not. It’s a spending issue,” said one local at the meeting. Instead, pension spending was raised by many as the real basis of the problem. New ConFire employees are offered a 2.7/57 pension package. This means that at retirement at age 57, they can take a pension in a percentage equal to 2.7 times the number of years they worked as a firefighter of their highest salary. That would equate to a firefighter who was paid $100,000 per year for his last of 30 years of employment being entitled to a pension of $81,000 per year, funded by a combination of investments made with their own salary contributions over the years, as well as money from the district. Currently, more than $31 million of the district’s $99.8 million budget goes to pension and retirement healthcare costs. Records show well over 100 retired ConFire employees take pensions each year in excess of $100,000, with a few reaching over $200,000. But County Supervisor Karen Mitchoff says public disgust at the pension figures – which led in large part to the defeat of Measure Q – is misplaced. “I understand the public’s frustration and irritation that they’re being asked to pay more to get less,” she said. “We all feel that way. But … that’s one of the fallacies that was put for-
DISTRICT CUTTING COSTS Mitchoff cited as examples of the District’s cutting of costs the two salary cuts agreed to by firefighters in the past two years totaling 10 percent, and a lowering in overtime expenses as the firefighters from the now-closed stations are sent to other stations where the existing staff had to work overtime hours to meet their communities’ needs. Based on overtime reduction alone, closing the four stations equates to $3 million in savings for the district. “Measure Q was meant to get us through the hard times with enough financial resources until we climbed out of the recession and the property tax revenue started climbing again,” she said. Although more station closures loom on the horizon – Pittsburg’s station 87 may be next – Mitchoff said she sees growth on the horizon via increased property tax revenues as the market recovers, and the possibility of future parcel tax measures. “We need to look at [changing California’s constitutional requirement that budget adoptions and tax increases must be approved by a two-thirds] supermajority,” she said. “If we lower the threshold, I think people will say they’re willing to pay for public safety.”
February 8, 2013
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Concord seeking volunteers to help with downtown planning
Joel Clayton descendants to pour at Camellia Tea
area when selecting the three at-large members. The role of this advisory committee is to help the city direct the long-term and shortterm development and improvement of the downtown area, specifically near the BART station. In addition to the three atlarge members, the committee will also include two city council members, two planning commissioners, one design review board member, one Todos Santos Business Association member and one Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce member. The committee is expected to meet month-
The Clayton Historical Society is celebrating Joel Clayton’s 200th birthday featuring his life in a special exhibit on Feb. 10 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Joel Clayton House Museum. This is also the 36th Annual Camellia Silver Tea honoring Clayton’s pioneering families. Founder Joel Clayton’s descendants are special guests and tea pourers. Come to meet his great grandson, Charles Calhan, and wife, Kathleen Calhan; their daughters, Ellen Magnie and Diane Hoffman; and granddaughter Ellen Culp, all from Sunnyvale. Also pouring is Debora Groves, the great granddaughter of the former owner of the Clayton Club, Carl Berendsen. Fresh Camellias will be on display to view while you enjoy delicious cookies, coffee, tea and punch. There is no admission charge, but donations are gratefully accepted. Children are welcome with an adult. The museum is at 6101 Main St., Clayton. For more information, go to claytonhistory.org.
hood, and social service needs within the community. Meetings are held the third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1950 Parkside Dr., in the City Manager’s Conference Room. Members may be required to meet more often in the spring. Application forms are posted on the home page of the City’s website at www.cityofconcord.org. Applications may also be obtained from the City Clerk’s office, 1950 Parkside Drive, or requested by calling 925-671-3495.
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Helix, from page 1
ly for approximately one year. Meanwhile the recruitment period for applicants to the Community Services Commission has been extended for an additional period, until Friday, Feb. 22 at 5 p.m. The commission is comprised of nine members, and is seeking to fill four openings and two alternates. This commission reviews funding requests, and advises the city council on the allocation of Federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for programs and projects, monitors the performance of funded programs, and identifies housing, neighbor-
much of what affects their daily lives happens at a local level.” Helix should know: this isn’t his first rodeo, so to speak. He served as mayor and a council member for Concord from 1968 to 1976, and a Director of the Bay Area Rapid Transit District. He was re-appointed to the Concord City Council in 2010, to serve the remainder of District Attorney Mark Peterson's term, and was just sworn in as mayor in December. This time around, he is perhaps learning to say “no,” more, and to keep council business from becoming a 24/7 occupation for he and his wife, Mary Lou. But other than that, the decorated Army general is in command of his troops. Besides developing a strong youth voice in the city, Helix’s other objective is to guide the city as it develops the Concord Naval Weapons Station. Besides his experience in local government, Helix served on a U.S. Congressional Commission considering structural changes in the Department of the Army, was on Governor Schwarzenegger’s Military Base Retention Commission; and co-chaired the Concord Reuse Committee for the CNWS. He has seen what the station was, and has grand plans for its future. “I want to make sure this city is good shape not only for the next generation, but for the 22nd Century,” he says. To that end, using the base to develop revenue-generating
projects is a priority. His own vision is to see the site anchored by a state-of-the-art sports training facility, most specifically for soccer, and attract businesses and projects that appeal to Concord’s quality of life. There are other projects brewing that he isn’t quite ready to talk about publically, but if he has his way, the old base will usher in a dynamic period of economic growth for the city. That is important to him, he says, as he has seen firsthand how hard a financial hit the city has taken in the last few years, leading to layoffs in vital city services and the elimination of some programs. “We are now coming back from that,” he told a packed Chamber of Commerce “State of the City” luncheon last month. “And I’m happy to say, our future looks bright.” To keep it that way, Helix needs to enlist the help of the next generation of young leaders. He plans to reinvent the city’s Youth Commission, to not only educate them but to educate him and his colleagues at city hall. He will hold a meeting with city department heads, local youth leaders and as many young people as possible later this month, to help him and his fellow council members gauge the areas of concern for young people, and map out projects that will both revitalize the community and engage youth. He may even get busy with the texting he so dreads. “We are a wired bunch” he says of the city council. “People can reach us at any time – by phone, email and texting – and we will listen.”
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KNOWLEDGE SERVICE INTEGRITY RESULTS
The city of Concord is seeking residents to serve on a couple of local committees. The city will be accepting applications for the newly established Downtown Specific Plan Ad Hoc Steering Committee. Preference will be given to people who live or work in the downtown target
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February 8, 2013
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February is Pet Dental Health Month so it is a good time to discuss a commonly seen feline dental disease. Cats do have their own form of cavities, medically called Feline Odontoclastic Resorption Lesions (FORLs) or Tooth Resorption (TR). Studies show that 60 percent of cats older than six years will lose at least one tooth due to this process. Unlike humans, this decay process is not caused by sugar within the diet and cannot be cured with a filling. The actual cause is unknown but there are theories depending on the type of lesion. There are two types of resorptive lesions in cats. Type I involves decay at and above the gum line with healthy roots. Inflammation caused by stomatitis, severe periodontal disease, calici and FIV virus, autoimmune disease, genetics, or even food allergies can stimulate destructive cells called odontoclasts. They slowly eat across tooth enamel, dentin and into the root pulp. Eventually the crown fractures across the gum line, painfully exposing nerve tissue. Your kitty may lose her appetite, drool, have blood tinged saliva as well as halitosis and weight loss. Type II starts below the gum line. One theory suggests that cats’ teeth were not made to eat hard food. As they bite into a hard substance, lateral forces on the crown cause cracks in the roots allowing the odontoclasts to enter. As the roots are destroyed, bone producing cells, osteoblasts, move in to replace the root with bone. This is called root resorption. The crown fractures off and gum closes over the resorbing roots. Thus there is little to no pain. The other theory proposes high dietary levels of Vitamin D enhances this root resorption process. On oral exam you and your
veterinarian may note swollen inflamed gums. The appearance of red gum extending up the outside of a tooth indicates a Type I lesion. When touched with a probe or finger nail your cat will exhibit pain with a jaw spasm and pulling away. These lesions may be hidden by tarter and not seen until tooth cleaning. Type II lesions are only diagnosed with oral x-rays. A gum covered bump indicates where roots have been resorbed. Appropriate treatment
includes general anesthetic so that a thorough dental cleaning, probing of tooth surfaces, measurement of gum pockets and taking of full mouth x-rays can be done to fully assess the level of disease present and the appropriate treatment. Extraction with root removal is the treatment of choice for Type I, although some teeth may possibly be restored by a Veterinary Dental Specialist. For Type II, crown amputation, burring the tooth
off at the gum line, is appropriate if X-rays show that the roots have been resorbed. At home fluoride gel treatment can slow the resorptive process. Prevention includes routine brushing, treatment to reduce inflammation, and perhaps wet food instead of dry. For more information on this topic and other veterinary issues visit, www.veterinarypartner.com. Marybeth Rymer, DVM, can be reached at Monte Vista Animal Hospital, Concord. 672-1100.
Amigo and Rainbow Sherbet are ARF’s Adoption Stars
8-year-old Amigo is a sweet, older boy who is the ultimate lap dog. He may be a little nervous at first, but with the help of positive, gentle encouragement and tasty treats, he should come around in no time! The adoption fee for adult dogs is $225 and includes 60% off one 7-week dog training session. 1 1/2-year-old Rainbow Sherbet is full of life. She sees everything as something to
explore and play with, and is a great huntress of toys. She seeks a cat savvy household where she can have lots of interactive playtime and things to do. Rainbow Sherbet’s adoption fee has been prepaid by a generous donor. Meet your forever friend at Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation, 2890 Mitchell Drive, Walnut Creek, during adoption hours: Noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday, 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, Noon to 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday. The primary caretaker must be present to adopt. ARF also encourages kids 16 and younger and canine family members (dog adoptions only) to be present during the adoption process. Would you like to be part of the heroic team that saves the lives of rescued dogs and cats? Can you share your talents to connect people and animals? ARF volunteers are making a difference! For more information see our website, www.arf.net, or call 925.256.1ARF.
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Mayor, from page 1 many community members in attendance. The negotiating teams celebrated the resolution of their mutual agreement over ice cream sundaes late last week. The acquisition of this vacant parcel improves the economic development potential of our downtown as the city promotes commercial and retail development consistent with our Town Center Specific Plan. The city council authorized the use of Downtown Economic Development Project Account funds, other project savings and interest earnings to pay for the property. No general fund or reserve funds were used to pay
for the property. The Clayton Community Church is continuing to market their office property formerly known as The Pioneer Inn. DOWNTOWN PLANS Speaking of commercial development, the market seems to be waking up. In the past few weeks, there have been several visitors to our community with active interest in our downtown. City staff and our economic development subcommittee (Councilmember Dave Shuey and me) are meeting with them to encourage their investment in our community. FIRE DISTRICT MEETINGS The Contra Costa Fire District hosted a community meeting on Jan. 23 to review their plans to serve Clayton’s fire and emergency services needs following the closure of our Station 11. The council ad-hoc committee will host another meeting on Monday, Feb. 4. If you would like to be notified of future meetings, please send me an email and I’ll put you on the notice list. We are also posting all the committee meetings and informational materials on the city’s website: www.ci.clayton.ca.us.
CAMELLIA TEA The Clayton Historical Society’s Camellia Tea is Sunday Feb. 10, from 1 to 4 p.m. Come on down and see the current exhibit, “The Life and Times of a True Pioneer of the West,” celebrating the bi-centennial of the birth of Joel Clayton. The Museum is also open (free admission) Sundays and Wednesdays from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. A visit to the museum makes a great family outing – kids of all ages love it. CELEBRATION AT DIAMOND TERRACE Congratulations to Diamond Terrace as they celebrate the 10th anniversary of their opening. This wonderful facility includes more than 80 apartments affordable to limitedincome seniors in our community. Over 100 residents, family members and guests attended the event. I was pleased to share in the festivities with 10-year residents Dorothy Bornemann, Lucille Brown, Margery Crawford, Lora Ingalls, Vonna Rainbow, Winnifred Reed, Wilma Stone and Marie Sutton. They wore yellow rose corsages and were all radiant for the celebration. As always, you can contact me by email at Julie_Pierce@comcast.net. Let me know what you think!
Club News Clayton Valley Presbyterian sponsors a Retirement and Communication Workshop for Couples Join this unique workshop that blends retirement planning and effective communication skills. Couples will learn communication skills and tools to ensure peaceful discussions about money. This free, threeweek series is led by an experienced financial planner and a skilled family psychologist. The program is designed for couples within 10 years of retirement or who are currently in retirement. Workshops will cover both the financial aspects of retirement planning and how to speak effectively with your spouse about retirement concerns. Workshops will be held at Clayton Valley Presbyterian Church, 1578 Kirker Pass Road, Clayton, on March 3, 10 and 17 from 12 to 2:00 p.m. The leaders are Michael Ginsberg, JD, a certified financial planner and retirement income specialist, and Dr. Marc D. Komori Stager who has been helping couples communicate effectively for 20 years. Space is limited. For information or to register, call 287-8400 or go to michaelginsberg.com.
February 8, 2013
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Helping kids get a Smart Start SAMANTHA TUOHEY
DVMS REPORTER Ever year at Diablo View parent volunteers present the Smart Start program for sixth
graders. Over the course of seven weeks, Smart Start covers cyber safety, tobacco and marijuana, prescription drugs, inhalants, alcohol, conflict resolution/ bullying, and peer pressure. Kathy Verderame, the coordinator of the Smart Start program at the middle school, was generous enough to let me talk with her about this program that
she feels so strongly about. “I feel passionate about the program,” she said. “The program works, because parent volunteers can sometimes have more credibility than people who are paid to be there. The parents are there, because they care.” She is very grateful that the teachers and principal are willing to give up seven hours of class
time and that the PFC is willing to pay for the parents’ training. Usually parents who volunteer continue to volunteer for a long time, partly because they have to go through 21 hours of training, but mostly because they want to educate children. At a recent training event, Mrs. Verderame learned that 90 cents out of every dollar spent on drug and alcohol abuse is
Fighting the Senioritis bug Senioritis: something that many begin to complain about as early as freshman year, but do not truly know until they are staring graduation in the face. As the senior class returns to school after winter break, we have reached the home stretch of our high school career. We are now second-semester seniors. If I thought my “senioritis” was bad during the first semester, it has gotten even worse now that I know that as long as
I pass my classes, the grades I get have no effect on whether or not I get into college. Don’t get me wrong: it’s not that I don’t want to learn. But after going through the college application process, I’ve become even more focused on my future career options, as well as looking forward to attending college and taking classes specifically tailored to my interests. Therefore, I am perfectly motivated to put all of my efforts into my English and journalism classes, and
even into government. It’s when it comes to math and science that I find myself at midnight, staring at a blank piece of binder paper where my homework should be. It can be argued that I brought this on myself: I did choose to take AP classes in subjects that I have never found to be particularly interesting. But the truth of the matter is that in order to be competitive on a college application, students must take difficult courses
U.S. is still warm to the Fahrenheit scale WOODY WHITLATCH WEATHER WORDS Here’s an interesting weather trivia question for you: What do the United States, Myanmar (Burma), Belize and Liberia have in common? The answer is that they are among the few countries in the world that use the Fahrenheit scale to report temperature. The rest of the countries on our planet have adopted the Celsius temperature scale. The history of temperature measurement provides some clues as to why that is. The first thermometer was invented in the mid 17th century, but it was nothing but an unmarked tube filled with a water/alcohol mixture that rose and fell as the temperature changed. About 50 years later a scientist named Gabriel Fahrenheit developed a mercury-based instrument. Fahrenheit’s device measured temperatures over a much larger range than the water based tube. His temperature scale included a zero point where a brine water substance froze, and 212, the boiling point of water. Using this scale, the freezing point of pure water was 32. The numbers on the scale
were called “degrees Fahrenheit” or degrees F. Almost a century later Swedish scientist Anders Celsius proposed a temperature scale that separated the freezing and boiling points of water into 100 increments. This scale was called Centigrade. Although he originally proposed zero for the boiling point and 100 for freezing, fellow scientists convinced Celsius to reverse the scale so that higher numbers indicated warmer temperatures. The Centigrade scale mimics the metric measurement system where length units are defined by multiples of ten. In the late 19th century the Centigrade temperature scale was adopted as a standard by the International Commission on Weights and Measures. In 1948 the General Conference on Weights and Measures standardized several units of measurement, including the temperature scale. Conference members chose to rename the Centigrade temperature scale after the man who devised it, Celsius. Over the next several decades the scientific community and most of the nations of the world adopted the metric system of measurements, including the Celsius temperature scale. The United States attempted a congressionally
approved voluntary metric conversion plan in the 1970s. It was poorly received by the American public and considered too expensive by the business community and federal government. This effort was officially disbanded in 1982. We remained a Fahrenheit country. There is a formula to convert degrees F to degrees C; subtract 32 from the Fahrenheit value then multiply by 5/9. Conversely, to convert from degrees C to degrees F, multiply the Celsius value by 9/5 then add 32. I find these formulas pretty cumbersome, and think it a lot easier to know a few basic conversions in the realm of temperatures we normally experience. For example 50°F equals 10°C, 68°F equals 20°C, and 86°F equals 30°C. In a nutshell, for me it’s cold below 10°C and hot above 30°C. It is highly unlikely that the U.S. will ever change the way temperatures are reported. However, when Americans travel to countries besides Burma, Belize and Liberia, a basic understanding of the Celsius temperature scale is useful.
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spent on rehabilitation and only 10 cents is spent on prevention. This to her seems completely backwards. This is a great program for the kids and parent volunteers. Kids gain the knowledge to make smart choices when faced with difficult situations, and parents can take away the satisfaction of knowing that they have helped at least one kid to have the tools that they need to make a better choice than they might have made otherwise. Parents are learning along with the kids, especially in the area of cyber-bullying, because technology is always changing. Now there are 10 Smart Start volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering for PEP or Smart Start or to learn more about either program contact Kathy Verderame at 925628-2892.
TEEN SPEAK in all subject areas to prove that they are a well-rounded student. Although I agree that everyone should be capable in all subject areas, I can’t help but find myself sitting in AP calculus thinking, “when am I ever going to use this?” Unless, while in college, I completely change my mind about something I’ve planned for since elementary school, I am not looking at a future as an engineering career. Which probably means the answer is never. It wouldn’t be all that bad if I found the subject matter to be interesting. However, since I am most definitely not the only student who feels this way, my classes are filled with restless teenagers whispering conversations while a teacher lectures obliviously. And even after a two-hour block, nothing has been accomplished. I realize that this is a catch-22, because in order for a teacher to teach an interesting class with real world applications, they need students who are excited to learn. And once we’ve filled out the cap and gown forms for graduation, those are just not abundant within the senior class. This is probably not the best way to prepare for college. Ideally, we should be more motivated than ever; we’ve worked hard to go on to bigger and better things in our education. But I am just as guilty as anyone, and wonder what it says about our generation, as we tend to get lazy right before the big finish. It often slips my mind that graduation is not necessarily an ending, but the beginning of our adulthood. Sara Chavez is a senior at Clayton Valley High School. She hopes to pursue her passions of writing and dancing in college, as well as working toward a career as a school psychologist. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Samantha Tuohey is in the seventh grade at Diablo View Middle School and plans to be a writer someday. Email your story ideas, comments and questions to Samantha@claytonpioneer.com.
One last opportunity for 2012 tax planning. If the “fiscal cliff” paralyzed you at the end of 2012 there is still one little tax savings you can put into effect for 2012 as long as you do it by April 15th 2013. If you qualify, you can put away the smaller of up to $5,000 ($6,000 if you are age 50 or older) or your total 2012 earned income (from wages or self-employment) into a traditional IRA. This is my favorite part: On average every dollar you put away for yourself is 25 cents less you have to give to the IRS. PS. Be sure to designate the IRA contribution as for 2012. And one more thing: if your family enjoys the education tax credits, wait until mid-February to file. The Form 8863 is not ready yet according the IRS. Luciann Leraul, CPA/MBA is ready to take the stress out of tax time for you. Call for an appointment,
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February 8, 2013
CV teams on bubble for NCS playoff bids JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer
Berths in the North Coast Section playoffs for soccer and basketball will be doled out this weekend and next and a couple Clayton Valley Charter High School teams will have their post-season fates in the hands of the selection committee. Both boys basketball and girls soccer have had winning records in Diablo Valley Athletic League play but losing marks in the pre-season leave their entry into the section playoffs in doubt. On the other hand, the Eagle girls basketball team is rolling towards an unbeaten league championship with an automatic NCS appointment already secured. The wrestling team of coach Kyle Behmlander has pointed to the DVAL tournament, which they host next Wednesday, as the time the squad will all be healthy and ready to qualify for the NCS meet Feb. 22-23. Girls basketball squad for coach Bernard Barnes has yet to have a close game in league play and has taken the DVAL title two of the past three seasons. The team’s goal all year was to not only qualify for NCS but be successful at section and earn a return trip to the Northern California Championships as they did two years ago after losing a heartbreaker in the NCS championship game. Troy Sullivan’s boys basketball team lost a narrow 56-55 decision to Concord High last month. Reversing that game would have left the two teams tied for second place behind undefeated College Park entering the last two weeks and with a better shot for the Eagles of making NCS. Clayton Valley Charter won only two of 14 non-league games to make it difficult to earn an at large section berth. Last year, none of the Division II teams in NCS had a losing overall record. The Eagles were 17-8 before being defeated in the opening round of the playoffs. A loss last Friday to Northgate further dented CVCHS hopes of garnering a playoff bid. For girls soccer it has been a season with wins, losses and draws almost balancing one another out. The Eagles have been to the NCS playoffs in Division I (previously 3A) for seven successive years and their fate at Sunday’s seeding meeting was probably going to be determined by the final round of games this week. College Park and Ygnacio Valley placed ahead of Scott Booth’s team in DVAL play and also had much more impressive overall records, even though both are categorized by attendance in Division II. The only CVCHS winter sports team totally out of consideration for NCS is the young, inexperienced soccer team of Jesus Martinez. The boys managed only a pair of draws this season although their most
recent three league games were all one-goal losses. Springs sports practice officially began this week with a
large number of athletes turning out, according to athletic director Greg Fister. Track and Field, lacrosse, swimming, baseball,
softball, boys golf, tennis and golf are all reading for play that begins late this month or in early March.
Jason Rogers photos
SOPHOMORE SARAH WILLIAMS (10) is one of the shorter players on her team but reaches over her Ygnacio Valley High opponent for a rebound in one of the Eagles league victories. Clayton Valley Charter has three more league games before starting play in the North Coast Section playoffs.
ALEX ZAVALA (5) SPLIT TWO NORTHGATE HIGH DEFENDERS as he drove to the basket for Clayton Valley Charter Friday in a loss to the Broncos 46-37. The junior guard ended with six points for the Eagles who have a winning record in league play but are suffering from a tough pre-season in trying to qualify for North Coast Section play. John Moore (24) led CVCHS with 13 points.
San Jose Earthquakes unveil landmark youth soccer development alliance with Diablo Futbol Club JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer
The San Jose Earthquakes announced this week the creation of a landmark partnership with Diablo Futbol Club of Concord, establishing the Earthquakes’ first Youth Development Alliance and allowing for collaboration at both the competitive and recreation levels of play. Through the partnership, Diablo FC – the club where current Earthquakes star and reigning Volkswagen Major League Soccer Most Valuable Player Chris Wondolowski played his final years of youth soccer – will work closely with the Earthquakes’ Youth Development Academy while implementing recreation leagues and development schools for girls and boys in the U5-U10 age groups. The Earthquakes will provide financial and curricular support as well as additional resources to assist Diablo FC in its overall development of competitive youth players while also offering recreation-level players an opportunity to participate in their own setting. On the competitive side, Diablo FC will field U12, U14,
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U16 and U18 teams donning an official San Jose Earthquakes Youth Development Alliance patch. Coaches in the program will report to Earthquakes Youth Academy technical director Chris Leitch and head coach Marquis White, who has coached for over a dozen years with Diablo FC and is the club’s Technical Director. Each roster will serve as a player pool for the club’s Academy, giving every athlete an added level of exposure. Diablo FC director of coaching Brian Voltattorni says, “This Alliance is a great opportunity for Diablo FC to work with such a respected organization as the San Jose Earthquakes. This gives our coaches a unique opportunity to work with the Earthquakes Technical Staff to share curricular ideas and training habits to help strengthen our player development program. “We are honored to be recognized with this partnership since our club has a history of over 20 years developing elite soccer athletes. We have helped place six Diablo FC alumni in MLS and have also had two of our Technical Directors and one alumni player selected for the San Jose Earthquakes USSDA
Academy Staff.” The Diablo FC connections to the Earthquakes Development Academy run deep. Assisting White on the U16 and U18
coaching level is Stephen Wondolowski, another Diablo FC alumnus who played in MLS for the Houston Dynamo with his brother Chris.
Photo courtesy Diablo FC
DIABLO FC DIRECTOR OF COACHING BRIAN VOLTATTORNI (LEFT) AND SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES YOUTH DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY MANAGER FRED WILSON put pen to paper on the agreement making the local competitive soccer club the Earthquakes first Youth Development Alliance partner, allowing for collaboration at both the competitive and recreation levels of play for area youth soccer players.
The goalkeeper coach for the Earthquakes Academy is Henry Foulk, perhaps the longest tenured coach in Diablo FC who coached the older Wondolowski in Diablo FC and has been keeper coach at his alma mater, Cal Berkeley, for 13 years. Foulk has spent the last two Januarys working with United States Men’s National Team coach Jurgen Klinsmann preparing the American National team for World Cup qualifying that began this week in Honduras. Several Diablo FC players have already made their mark with Earthquakes Academy teams including former Clayton Valley High standout Eli Padilla. As a sophomore Padilla shattered the scoring records for the Eagles before joining the Academy team on a full-time basis. Kids in the Diablo FC recreation league will have the opportunity to play in a fun environment while wearing Earthquakes team gear. Structurally, the Earthquakes will also provide a registration platform that Diablo FC can utilize to improve their digital experience. In addition to competitive teams and recreation leagues,
See Alliance, page 11
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February 8, 2013
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Sports Clayton Valley Little League preparing for 50th season The first time this spring that the umpire says “Play Ball” Clayton Valley Little League will begin its 50th season of offering youth baseball to youngsters in the community. To mark this significant landmark, CVLL is looking for information, souvenirs and photos that former players, coaches and parents can provide, especially about the early years of the league. Merrill “Mack” McCarty and a group of volunteers were responsible for getting the league organized to play its first games in 1964. The McCarty family will be on hand at this year’s opening ceremonies on Sunday, Mar. 24, at 9 a.m. in the Clayton Valley Charter High School gymnasium. Following the Mar. 24 opening ceremonies there will be the annual Hit-A-Thon fundraiser and team pictures at the CVLL fields on Academy Way adjacent to the high school campus. Nearly 600 players are registered for the local baseball and softball program this year. League president Kevin Christiansen says, “We are proud of our league’s heritage and have heard so many stories of how CVLL has been a source of fond memories for the youth of Clayton and Concord. We look forward to sharing the story of the beginnings of our league. CVLL would like to reach out to our current and past players for any photos they would like to share and which may be part of a video for the league.” Interested parties can send email photos, stories, documents and any history to CVLLhistory@gmail.com. The Pioneer will be running stories about Clayton Valley Little League and its 50th season this spring.
Alliance, from page 10 the partnership will also allow for a series of Regional Development Schools. These eightweek programs are offered at four different levels: Elite, Hopefuls, Recreation U5-U10 and Developmental U5-U10. The focus for RDS programs is on developing fundamental skills in a fun, engaging environment. Finally, the partnership will include camps and clinics offered exclusively to Diablo FC members in conjunction with the Earthquakes. The Earthquakes are coming off a 2012 season that saw them win the Supporters Shield with the top record during the regular season among the 19 MLS teams. Wondolowski won his second Golden Boot in three years as the top scorer in the league while tying the all-time MLS record for goals in a season with 27. The former De La Salle High star started in the MLS all-star game against European champion Chelsea. Diablo FC is concluding tryouts this month for U9 through U14 boys and girls teams and will hold tryouts for the U15 through U18 age groups in April. For more information, visit www.diablofc.org and www.sjearthquakes.com/academy.
New era for Clayton Valley Charter track began this week
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DARREN NEWELL (LEFT) HAS TAKEN OVER AS TRACK AND FIELD COACH at Clayton Valley Charter High School. Newell is familiar with many of the 160 athletes signed up for the spring program after coaching them on the St. Bonaventure CYO track team in recent years. Among the standouts getting their first official workouts this week are senior triple jumper and sprinter Nicole Simms (center) and junior Sara Holt, who figures to challenge for State Meet in the triple jump as well as running hurdles and sprints.
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Sports Shorts SPRING YOUTH, ADULT PROGRAM SIGNUPS NOW AT CLAYTON GYM
Spring youth basketball academy for boys and girls of all skill levels in first through ninth grades is returning to Clayton Community Gym for seven Fridays starting Mar. 15. Signups are also being taken for spring youth volleyball league, which will run on Saturdays from Mar. 2-April 20 for ages 8-16. Adult volleyball league begins a sevenweek Thursday night season Mar. 21 and runs through May 2. Youth Tee-ball league for ages 3-5 is Mar. 16-Apr. 27. Registration deadline for these programs is Feb. 25. For more information or to register for any program offered by All Out Sports at the gym, visit alloutsportsleague-clayton.com.
WAITLIST SPRING SIGNUPS FOR MT. DIABLO SOCCER TAKEN ONLINE
Mt. Diablo Soccer is still accepting applications for its spring program which begins in March. Players who participated in the fall season are charged only $50 for spring. Boys and girls 4 to 18 years of age can take part. Under 12 and older divisions in spring league are coed. Spring league ends in midMay and is generally less formal than fall with players getting the opportunity to play soccer without any post-season playoff pressure. Email any questions to email@example.com. Players registering now will be placed on wait list at mdsoccer.org.
MEET DANA HILLS SWIM TEAM COACH FEB. 20
The 10th annual Crab Feed and Auction to support Diablo FC youth soccer programs is this Friday, Feb. 8, at Centre Concord. Besides the crab feed dinner and fund-raising live and silent auctions, there will be dancing. Tickets are $50. To get more info or to buy tickets visit diablofc.org.
City Meet champion Dana Hills Swim Team will hold a Meet the Coach Night on Wednesday, Feb. 20, at the Dana Hills Cabana Club on Mountaire Parkway from 6-7:30 p.m. New coach John Tsubota will be on hand and there will be refreshments and door prize for attendees. Early registration for the 2013 DHST season opens online beginning Saturday, Feb. 23. For complete information visit danahillsotters.com.
TEAM REGISTRATION OPEN FOR CONCORD
19TH CVCHS CRAB FEED & AUCTION MAR. 16
Clayton Valley Charter High School Athletic Boosters will hold their 19th annual Crab Feed and Auction on Saturday, Mar. 16, at Centre Concord. Tickets are sold on a first come, first served basis and the popular event always sells out. Must be 21 or older to attend. For more info email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to cvhsboosters.org to order tickets.
10TH ANNUAL DIABLO FC CRAB FEED & AUCTION THIS FRIDAY
Concord Parks and Recreation is taking team registrations for one of the fastest growing adult sports in the country – adult coed kickball. The game is played following the rules for softball, except there is no bat involved. Teams can choose to play Sunday, Tuesday or Friday evenings for the seven-game season beginning in March with single-elimination playoffs for qualifying teams. Rosters are 12 to 20 players with games played under the lights at Willow Pass Park. “Our leagues are all coed and are perfect for family and company teams. Our goal is to provide a fun, relaxing, recreational opportunity for adults of all ages,” says coordinator Kathie Leavitt. Registration deadline is next Friday, Feb. 15. For more information, visit teamsideline.com/concord or call (925) 671-3423.
OAKHURST ORCAS SIGNUPS FEB. 27, MAR. 24 Head coach Jasmine Millan announced that registration days for the Oakhurst Country Club recreation summer swim team will be held on Wed., Feb. 27, from 7-8 p.m. and Sunday, Mar. 24, from 2-3 p.m. Parents will have the opportunity to meet the coaches and their coaching philosophy and learn about practice dates and times. For more info email coach Millan at email@example.com.
SARAH NELSON NAMED TO PACWEST FANTASTIC 15 FOR 3RD TIME Dominican University sophomore center Sarah Nelson has been named to the Pacific West Conference Fantastic 15 for the third time this season. The 6foot-4 Nelson averaged 11.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks over three games for the Lady Penguins during the Jan. 21-27 week. The Clayton native is currently tied for third among NCAA Division II women’s basketball players in blocked shots (3.06). She leads Dominican with 10.8 points and 8.0 rebounds per game.
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SUPPLEMENTAL DIABLO FC U9-U14 COMPETITIVE SOCCER TRYOUTS IN FEB.
Diablo FC is now aligned with the San Jose Earthquakes and will hold supplemental tryouts for the 2013 competitive soccer season for under 9 through under 14 girls and boys competitive teams. Those who missed earlier tryouts can register today at diablofc.org and the appropriate age group coach will contact the player about an evaluation. U15-U18 team tryouts will be held in April and can register for free tryouts now at diablofc.org.
CLAYTON PIONEER WANTS TO HEAR YOUR SPORTS STORY We get plenty of information from local high schools, sports leagues and clubs. What we don’t hear about so often are from our neighbors who are competing below that radar screen. There are Claytonians who are participating in sports and recreational endeavors that we don’t normally hear about but we’d like to tell their stories too. If you know of someone – or even if you are that someone – let us know what you’re doing and perhaps we’ll find it something our readers would love to read about! If you’re running, jumping, hiking, biking, swimming, skydiving, bowling, golfing or participating in any of dozens of other sports and recreational activities let us know. Give us a brief rundown and your contact information and we might be in touch with you. It’s as simple as sending an email to email@example.com.
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February 8, 2013
Community Calendar PLEASE SUBMIT YOUR CLAYTON COMMUNITY CALENDAR EVENTS BY 5 P.M. FEB. 13
IN CLAYTON Feb. 10 Camellia Tea Clayton Historical Society’s 36th annual Camellia Silver Tea and Open House. Camellia display and special exhibit featuring Clayton’s founder, Joel Clayton. 1 – 4 p.m. Clayton Museum, 6101 Main Street. Free. Donations welcome. 672-0240.
Feb. 19 A Passion for Art
ISSUE. ITEMS MUST BE SUBMITTED BY EMAIL TO
Feb. 15 – 24 “Disenchanted! Bitches of the Kingdom”
Wednesdays Book Buddies
A brand new, fun-loving, hilarious musical revue proving that happily-ever-after can be a royal pain in the ass! Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $25-$30. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
A volunteer will read stories for children 3 and older. 1 - 2 p.m. Call in advance.
Feb. 17 Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra
Story time for 3- to 5-year-olds. Child may attend without caregiver. 11 a.m.
Composites. 7:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $10-$30. Veterans mention code word “CHIEF” for discount. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Sundays thru Feb. 24 Computer Science Club
Clayton Valley Art Collaborative’s February coffee. Opportunity for local artist’s to present projects and techniques. Art sales. Non-artists welcome. 7 – 8:30 p.m. Diamond Terrace, 6401 Center St., Clayton. $5 donation. Prospective artists must contact Julie VanWyk at firstname.lastname@example.org or Nancy Garrett at email@example.com by Feb. 11.
Join naturalist Michael Marchiano as he presents a cross section of animal and plants encountered on Mt. Diablo. 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Summit Audio Visual Room, Mount Diablo. mdia.org.
Mar. 3 Chili Cook-Off
Feb. 23 Parenting the Child with Special Needs
Make great chili? Enter the Clayton Club’s annual Chili Cook-Off. Prizes for first, second and third place. Registration required for contestants. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Clayton Club Saloon, 6096 Main St., Clayton. claytonclubsaloon.com. 673-0440.
Mini conference. 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Loma Vista Adult Center Multi-use Room, 1266 San Carlos Ave., Concord. Register at www.mdusd.k12.ca.us/adulted.
Feb. 17 Mount Diablo
Feb. 28 – Mar. 24 “Othello”
First Thursdays Oakhurst Business Network Meets first Thursday of the month for social hour. Hosted hors d’oeuvres, cash bar. 5 – 7 p.m. Oakhurst Country Club, 1001 Peacock Drive, Clayton. oakhurstcc.com.
EVENTS AND ENTERTAINMENT Thru Feb. 9 “Down an Alley Filled with Cats” Australian thriller set in a rare used book shop in Sydney. Diablo Actors’ Ensemble Theatre, 1345 Locust St., Walnut Creek. $10$25. diabloactors.com.
Thru Feb. 10 “The Spots of a Leopard”
Shakespeare’s tragedy of falsehood, jealousy and revenge in this gender-reversed casting. Cue Productions Live, 1835 Colfax St., Concord. $12-$18. b8company.com. Feb. 24 Contra Costa Camp Fair Find out about Summer Camps, daycare, preschool, sports and more. Acalanes High School, Lafayette. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. contracostacampfair.com.
The first dance work developed from suggestions on the internet. Shadelands Arts Center, 111 Wiget Lane, Walnut Creek. $19$37. diabloballet.org.
Thru Mar. 2 “Old Wicked Songs”
San Francisco Symphony’s Donato Cabrera conducts Beethoven. 4 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $65. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Center REP performs this inspirational journey of two very different men, with music as a common bond, who must find a way to break through their pasts. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $33-$51. centerrep.org. 943-7469.
Mar. 28, April 4 Getting on the Air
Feb. 9 The Szymanowski Quartet
Two-part seminar to develop your amateur radio license gettingon-the-air skills. Held by Salvation Army and Mt. Diablo Amateur Radio Club. 7 – 9 p.m. Salvation Army, 3950 Clayton Road, Concord. Class is free. $5 materials fee. Registration required. firstname.lastname@example.org.
CHURCHES AND RELIGION Baha’i, interaction, fellowship and discussion. Topic: Baha’i Faith: Its History and Beliefs. Speaker: Henry Miller: Educator with master’s degree in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology. 7:30 p.m. Free. For directions, call 672-6686.
Feb. 10 Diablo Symphony Natasha Paremski performing on the piano. 2 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $10-$25. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Feb. 11 New Shanghai Circus Fearless performers with boundless energy bring you more than 2000 years of Chinese circus traditions. 3 and 7 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $15-$45. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Feb. 12 California Symphony Performs The Sounds of Love. 7:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $65. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Mar. 2 Crab Feed Concord High School Choir Crab Feed. 6 – 11 p.m. Centre Concord, 5298 Clayton Road, Concord. $45 per person; $400 table of 10. Buy tickets by Feb. 22. Contact Rolynne Manalac at email@example.com or 788-9456.
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The Clayton Library is at 6125 Clayton Road. Programs are free unless otherwise noted. claytonlibrary.org or 673-0659.
Tuesdays thru Mar. 5 Patty Cakes Story time for babies to 3-year-olds. Child attends with caregiver. 11 a.m.
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Feb. 11 Clayton Library Book Club Sunny Solomon leads the discussion of “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Shermann Alexie. Group open to anyone who would like to join. 7 p.m.
Program to get you acquainted with your new gadget and take advantage of the library’s e-books. 7 – 8:30 p.m. Registration required. ccclib.org or 673-0659.
Doug Thomas, library assistant, gives a brief presentation and answers questions about how to find the information you are looking for at the library. 7 p.m. Registration required at ccclib.org or 673-0659.
Mar. 13 CERT Emergency preparedness seminar. Learn what to have on hand, develop an escape plan, know what goes in your Go Bag. 7 – 9 p.m.
The Concord Library is at 2900 Salvio St. 646-5455.
Join us for this very special storytelling experience with Kirk Waller. He is nationally recognized for his storytelling abilities. 7 – 7:45 p.m.
1st and 3rd Tuesdays Clayton City Council 7 p.m. Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. 6737304 or ci.clayton.ca.us.
7 p.m., Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. 6737304 or ci.clayton.ca.us.
Meeting dates and times for local clubs and organizations are listed at claytonpioneer.com. Click on ‘Events’
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Learn about solar technologies and the key steps to going solar. 10:30 a.m. Space is limited. Registration required. ccclib.org or 673-0659.
Installations by In-House Crew
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Feb. 9 Solar Energy Basics for Homes and Farms
2nd and 4th Tuesdays Clayton Planning Commission
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For K through 2nd graders. Pick up reading record, read 10 books and return for a prize. Dr. Seuss read-in on Mar. 2 from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Doug Van Wyck
Thru Mar. 2 Chill Out and Read
Feb. 11 Storyteller
Presented by Chamber Music SF. 2:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. Tickets on sale Feb. 9 at 12 a.m. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Introduction to computer science for high school students. Led by Mike Fine, veteran in technology industry and member of Curriculum and Instruction Committee at CVCHS. 1 – 2:30 p.m. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Feb. 27 Clayton Library 101: An Introduction
Mar. 3 California Symphony
Story of the first Hollywood movie musical. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $49-$53. lesherartscenter.org. 943-7469.
Thursdays thru Mar. 7 Picture Book Time
Feb. 20 Electronic Book Gadgets
Mar. 1, 2 “The Web Ballet”
Onstage Theatre performs this comedy by John Baker. Cue Productions Live, 1835 Colfax St., Concord. 518-3277.
Feb. 8 – Mar. 2 “Singin’ in the Rain”
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February 8, 2013
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Page 13 Father and Daughter Owned & Operated
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Last weekend for DAE’s ‘Down an Alley’ Diablo Actors’ Ensemble (DAE) is presenting Warwick
Moss’s “Down an Alley Filled with Cats” through Feb. 9.
Directed by Scott Fryer, this Australian thriller is set in a rare
used book shop in Sydney. Simon comes to the shop at closing time in pursuit of a particular volume. It soon becomes obvious that the book contains an important code. Through the night he and the book shop owner discover themselves through each other. The show features Jeremy Cole and Avi Jacobson.
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Performances are Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. at the DAE theater, 1345 Locust St. in Walnut Creek. Tickets range from $10-$25 and can be reserved at 866-811-4111 or www.diabloactors.com.
Photo: Jay Yamada
Jeremy Cole and Avi Jacobson star in ‘Down an Alley Filled with Cats’, playing at the Diablo Actors Ensemble through Sunday.
‘Dead Metaphor’ to liven up A.C.T’s season Now
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A.C.T. will present the world premiere of George F. Walker’s “Dead Metaphor” – a hilarious dark comedy about the hypocrisies of postwar living, Feb. 28 through March 24, in San Francisco. When Dean returns home from the war in the Middle East, he discovers that his superior military skills don’t get him very far in the working world. He readjusts to non-bunker life by moving in with his parents and pregnant ex-wife, then takes the only job he can get — as an assistant to a crusading politician on her own mission for “truth and justice.” The play is directed by Irene Lewis, and features René Augesen, Tom Bloom, Rebekah Brockman, Anthony Fusco, George Hampe and Sharon Lockwood. The recipient of The Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement – Canada’s highest honor for excellence in the performing arts – Walker is one of Canada’s most acclaimed and widely produced playwrights. There will be several InterACT events, at which the audience can learn more about the play and its production, throughout the run. “Dead Metaphor” will be performed at A.C.T.’s Geary Theater, 415 Geary St., San Francisco. Tickets start from $20 (current pricing $20–$95). For more information, call 415-749-2228 or visit www.actsf.org.
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You’ve just returned home after a visit to a local portrait studio. Your prize, for a morning spent with your family in a cozy 10-foot-by-10-foot studio, is a lovely family portrait – all smiles, all looking at the camera, all temporarily clean and polished. Before this framed beauty starts to collect dust, you seize the moment by getting out the hammer and picture-hanging hardware and decide to find the perfect spot on one of your walls…but where? If you’ve lived in your home for a few years, chances are most of your walls are pretty well filled. But don’t settle for a so-so space for your new addition. Look at this project as an opportunity to take inventory of your wall décor and rearrange some things. Photography, fine art, decorative objects, like thoughtfully placed accessories on a table top, should be hung with an organized plan in mind. I like to group family photos together. Instead of hanging one family photo on every wall
throughout your house, consider grouping them on one or two walls to create an “individually framed photo album.” Family photos are personal and very meaningful, so by keeping them in a group, you’re telling a story. How you hang them – side-byside, in rows, randomly, or in coordinating or contrasting frames – this is where the decorative element comes in to play. FOCAL POINT VS. GALLERY Reclaimed ceiling tins with a distressed finish, a series of mounted game fish, a collection of antique white dishes you’ve gathered over the years, a woven tapestry displaying an Italian countryside, or vintage concave and convex mirrors with gold distressed frames – whether you’re trying to create a focal point with one special item or adorn your walls with numerous pieces to create a gallery, if the wall décor and the furnishings within the room compliment each other, you’re on the right track.
FRAMING Old frames can be charming, especially if they contain photos taken in the 1940s or ‘50s. Those vintage tones that we try to achieve with our computers today were just a matter of fact back then. But there’s a fine line between charming and dated. If your frames are coming apart at the corners, if your artwork or photos do not fit, if your artwork should really have a matte, or if your frames don’t complement your furnishings and décor, these are all clues that your artwork is ready for new frames. A great choice for new frames is black. A simple, squared off edge in a flat finish coordinates with just about everything. And if your artwork needs a matte, select white or ivory as the finishing touch. Jennifer Leischer is the owner of J. Designs Interior Design based in Clayton. Contact her with questions, comments and suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org
Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
St. John’s Clayton
A Lenten Speakers’ Series
“Peacemaking & Healing in a Broken & Divided World.” featuring Speakers from Six Faith Traditions on Six Consecutive Sundays
Feb 17-Mar 24, 6:30 p.m. Feb 17 Father Spyridon, Greek Orthodox Feb 24 Dr. Harmesh Kumar, Sikh Mar 3 Estelle Frankel, Jewish Mystical tradition Mar 10 Kate Boisvert & Pascal Kaplan, Sufi Mar 17 Hugh Joswick, Ph.D., Tibetan Buddhist Mar 24 Dr. Diane Hill, Baha’i
Freewill donation suggested
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February 8, 2013
Spice up your sweet potatoes DEBRA J. MORRIS Pacific Coast Farmers Market
and is not even distantly related to the sweet potato.
2 lb. medium sweet potatoes 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
Whether you bake them, “candy” them, or mash them, sweet potatoes are delicious. They are unsurpassed in betacarotene and vitamin content, and surprisingly low in calories. They’re perfect as a side with pork, chicken, vegetables and more. Anthocyanin and other color-related pigments in sweet potato are equally valuable for their anti-inflammatory health benefits. And since February is Heart Health Month, it’s a perfect way to treat your heart well. California grows both “dry flesh” and “moist flesh” varieties. The “moist flesh” type is sometimes referred to as a yam, and the “dry flesh” as a sweet potato. They are both sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are native to Central America and Peru. The sweet potato is a member of the morning glory family. The true yam is native to Africa. The term “yam” came to be synonymous with sweet potatoes because Louisiana used the term to market their moist, orange sweet potatoes. The true yam is the tuber of a tropical vine (Dioscorea batatas)
ROASTED SPICED SWEET POTATOES 1 tsp. coriander seeds 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds 1/2 tsp. dried oregano 1/2 tsp. dried hot red pepper flakes 1 tsp. kosher salt
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Coarsely grind coriander, fennel, oregano and red pepper flakes in an electric coffee/spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle. Stir together spices and salt. Cut potatoes lengthwise into
1-inch wedges. Toss wedges with oil and spices in a large roasting pan and roast in middle of oven for 20 minutes. Turn wedges over with a spatula and roast until tender and slightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes more. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
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FASHION OVER 50 My new glasses have chunky frames. Should I adjust my makeup? Too much eye makeup with glasses can look heavy and distracting. Stick to a neutral shade of eye shadow and a little mascara. Switch the focus to a bold lip instead. What’s the one thing every woman should splurge on? A tailor. Whether you shop at Target or buy designer clothes, if the piece doesn’t fit, you won’t look your best. Get your jackets nipped at the waist and your pants hemmed at the perfect length.
What’s the newest inexpensive cosmetic line? Drew Barrymore’s Flower Beauty. Her crème eye shadows ($7) won’t crease, stick or run, yet they come off easily with makeup remover. The adjustable wand in the Ultimate Mascara ($8) gives you both volume and length. The line is available at Walmart. How can I make my lips look fuller without resorting to injectable fillers? Try drawing a curved white line along the Cupid’s bow to emphasize the shape of your lips. You can buff the liner with a clean sponge or just use a nude-colored pencil (Cover Girl lip pencil in Seduce, $7) for a subtler plumping effect. Also, when lining your lips, follow the outer structural ridge rather than the natural color line.
How can I give my cheeks a more natural flush? Use lipstick instead of powder blush. This is a trick I learned in modeling school that I still use. Put two dots on the apple of each cheek and use your fingers to blend them into the foundation already on your face. It creates a kind of emulsion that glows for a younger, more vibrant look.
What can I do to update my office wardrobe? The workplace has become progressively more casual. Suits are out, separates are in. Mix, match and layer essential pieces and you’ll not only look chic, but you’ll save money. A crisp white shirt, wool pants with some stretch in black, navy or gray and a year-round leather jacket will get you started. Add a pop of color in a belt, scarf or bag. And please, don’t match your shoes to your bag. This is not your mother’s office. Lastly, remember size and age are just numbers. Live long and pester!
Judith Marshall is the author of “Husbands May Come and Go but Friends are Forever.” Send comments to Judith.Marshall@att.net. MERYL STREEP
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Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
Switch things up in your work out Are your tiring of your New Year’s exercise regimen already? If so, it’s never too early to change. Here are some tips for keeping up the motivation to stay fit: Change the type of exercise you usually do. The possibilities of aerobic exercise are endless. If you walk, try cycling. If you take kickboxing, try the elliptical. Consider adding some of these possibilities to your routine: running, jogging, walking, elliptical machine, swimming, cycling, indoor exercise, outdoor exercise, hiking, fitness videos/DVDS, group fitness classes like kickboxing, aerobics, spinning, stair steppers, etc. There are many options — just change it up. Change the mode of exercise. If you’re using machines, move to f r e e weights. If you’re u s i n g b o d y weight, try resistance bands. If you are doing free weights, add a stability element like a BOSU ball or stability ball. Try doing exercises while balancing on one foot or switch between
any and all of these. Change the exercises you actually do. If you’ve been doing chest presses, change to a chest fly or use the pec-deck machine. Think of an alternative exercise for each muscle group and you’ll have an entirely new workout. Change your resistance level and/or number of repetitions. Be sure to increase your weight regularly. Make sure you are lifting to failure with each set. If you typically lift 12-15 reps, try doing 8-10 with a higher weight, or vice versa. Play with your weight and reps in each set. For example, try lifting 25 pounds for 15 reps, then 30 pounds for 12, then 35 pounds for 10 reps on your third set. You can also do it backwards, starting with high weight/low reps and working the weight down. There are many ways to add variety to your workouts, and it’s important that you do to continue losing weight and improving your fitness level. By always challenging yourself, you will avoid hitting a plateau in the first place, and overcome the one you’re stuck in now. BLAST 130 CALORIES IN 12 MINUTES Do you want to burn 130 calories in 12 minutes? This
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5:00-6:00 Reverse crunch: Lie on back with knees bent, feet lifted and arms at sides. Using your abs, lift your hips off floor; lower and repeat. 6:00-8:00
challenging circuit was designed to sculpt all your major muscles while improving balance and coordination. What you need: A jump rope (that’s it!)
0:00-1:00 Warm jumping jacks.
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Repeat cardio drill.
8:00-9:00 Mountain climber: Get into a full push-up position and bring one knee toward chest. Switch feet back and forth as quickly as you can, keeping palms on floor. 9:00-10:00 Squat jump: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, arms at sides. Squat down, then jump up explosively. Land softly into squat position; repeat. 10:00-12:00 Repeat cardio drill.
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Ilima Heuerman holds multiple fitness certifications. She trains at Levity Fitness studio in Clayton. Email Ilima at IlimaHeuerman@levityfitness.com
(3 1/2 crown 64 lineal ft, 8 cuts)
1:00-2:00 Quick feet pushups: Run in place as fast as you can for 5 seconds, then drop to the floor and complete one full push-up; repeat. 2:00-4:00 rope.
Cardio drill: jump
4:00-5:00 Skater lunge: Standing with feet hip-width apart, bend right knee 90 degrees and place it behind left foot. Return to start and repeat with opposite leg.
Prepare for the unexpected RICH VEAL Clayton PIoneer
An unexpected event could be a sudden illness or injury to yourself or a loved one that requires a trip to the hospital or out of town. Maybe there has been a hazardous substance release that will affect your area. Possibly your residence has become unstable due to an earthquake or other natural phenomenon. When the unexpected happens, we are often thrown into emotional turmoil. The trigger event can vary. The way to react appropriately under these conditions is to be organized ahead of
time and update this organization on a regular basis. Let’s identify some simple no-cost, pre-planned measures you can accomplish in a few minutes that may save you hours of anxiety later. COMMUNICATION During an unexpected event the most important thing to have is not water, food or any of the other things you might expect would top the list. It is having a preplanned method to communicate. If you cannot communicate your needs or inform others of your status, your situation can deteriorate quickly. Give some thought to the consequences of an inability
Police Activity Report P O L I C E A C T I V I T Y FOR TWO W E E K S ENDING JAN . 31, 2013 ACCIDENTS Jan. 26, 8:19 p.m. Oakhurst Dr./Yolanda Cr. ARRESTS Jan. 18, 11:23 p.m. Clayton Rd./El Camino Dr. A 23-year-old Martinez man was arrested for driving while license suspended after being stopped for a Vehicle Code violation. Jan. 19, 1:01 a.m. Clayton Rd./Marsh Creek Rd. A 21year-old Concord man was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon in vehicle; carrying a loaded firearm on/in person/vehicle: public place; suspended driver’s license; possession of hydrocodone, codeine; possession of hash oil/concentrated cannabis; possession of codeine without prescription after being stopped for a Vehicle Code violation. Two 20-year old male passengers from Concord were also arrested. Jan. 20, 1:17 a.m. Main St./Morris St. A 42-year-old
Concord man was arrested for DUI; driving while license suspended for DUI after being stopped for a Vehicle Code violation. Jan. 21, 12:16 a.m. Mountaire Cir./Mountaire Pkwy. A 25-year-old Clayton man was arrested for DUI; possession of marijuana 28.5 grams or less with priors after officers responded to a call for service. Jan. 24, 2:09 a.m. Center St./Easley Dr. A 31-year-old Pittsburg man was arrested for DUI after being stopped for a Vehicle Code violation. Jan. 24. Center St./Morris St. Four juveniles from Concord were arrested in downtown Clayton after fleeing from a stolen vehicle around 9 a.m. Concord police issued a be-onthe-lookout notification shortly before that for the compact car. When a Clayton officer spotted and attempted to stop the car, the suspects fled. The youths were captured and booked in a joint effort between Clayton and Concord police. The suspects were released to their parents/guardians and were referred to the juvenile proba-
to ask for assistance or inform others of your state of affairs. Let’s consider two basic types of communication, active and passive. The active method is one in which communication is initiated and a reply or confirmation of understanding is received. This can be accomplished many ways. Face to face, land-line phone, cell phone (have you programmed important contacts into your phone including an agreed-upon out of area contact person?), text message, walkie talkie radios and amateur radio are just a few examples.
See Prepare, page 16
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tion system. Jan. 26, 7:15 p.m. Clayton Rd./Kirker Pass Rd. A 30-yearold Concord woman was arrested on a warrant after being contacted by officers on a traffic stop. Jan. 28, 2:38 a.m. Clayton Rd./Washington St. A 26-yearold Clayton man was arrested for driving while license suspended for DUI after being stopped for Vehicle Code violations. Jan. 29, 10:02 p.m. Clayton Rd./Kirker Pass Rd. A 24-year-old Concord man was arrested for driving while license suspended for DUI after being stopped for Vehicle Code violations. Jan. 29, 11 p.m. Alberta Way/Ygnacio Rd. A 30-yearold Concord man was arrested for driving while license suspended for DUI after being stopped for Vehicle Code violations. BURGLARIES/THEFTS Jan. 24, Alef Ct. Petty Theft. Jan. 25, Mt. Palomar Pl. Burglary – Residential. Jan. 31, Peacock Creek Rd./Clayton Rd. Burglary – Vehicle. VANDALISM Jan. 25, Center St. Jan. 28, High St. Jan. 31, Gamay Dr.
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Clayton Pioneer • www.claytonpioneer.com
February 8, 2013
Fertilize and prune this month for healthy roses Granular iron breaks down slowly to fight chlorosis, and gives your rose gorgeous green leaves. Epsom salts intensify the color. Spreading chicken manure on top of the fertilizers and watering in gives a rose an instant surge of nitrogen, while holding the applied fertilizers in place. Almost all of these ingredients have other uses in your garden and landscape besides roses. You can use the multi-purpose fertilizer almost everywhere, from containers to fruit trees or evergreens. The alfalfa meal can be used to prepare your vegetable beds and to feed clematis. Bone meal can also be used as a starter for your vegetable installations and when you plant bulbs. Granular iron has several uses; apply to citrus, acid-loving plants and your lawn to keep it green. And the epsom salts can be used in the tub to soak your body after all your gardening.
recipe is for one mature ground grown rose and tree rose:
FIVE-INGREDIENT ROSE FERTILIZER RECIPE ½ cup 16-16-16 Multi-purpose Fertilizer ½ cup Alfalfa Meal ½ cup Bone Meal ½ cup Granular Iron (F.S.T, Dr. Iron, or Iron Plus) ½ cup Epsom Salts
Cultivate fertilizer throughout drip line, top dress with chicken manure and water in. If you are fertilizing container-grown roses, cut the recipe in half. Do not feed new, bare root installations with this recipe. Water your roses and landscape every five days during dry spells in the winter months. If it’s been windy, add another day. Why do we need so many ingredients? Why not just use one of those national-brand jugs of rose food from the hardware store? Roses have more needs than one container of product can satisfy. Each ingredient serves a purpose in this recipe. The 16-16-16 multi-purpose fertilizer is a garden shed staple. It is a perfect, balanced feeding of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Almost all plants need these elements. The alfalfa meal is an organic form of nitrogen that, when mixed in the soil, remains available for long periods. Alfalfa meal has also been proven to help roses develop new cane growth, and new canes are the most flower-productive. Bone meal is an organic form of phosphorus, and phosphorus creates more opportunity for flowers.
Each January and early February we focus on the winter pruning of roses for our Clayton Valley landscapes and gardens. Many residents already have a firm understanding of how to prune a rose. The principles are simple: Cut back last year’s growth. Remove any crossing branches and stems. Cut or saw away old, thick canes, leaving the rose resembling a basket. The instructions are always the same, and pruning can be done by anyone. An annually pruned rose should take only five minutes to prune. What takes some time is fertilizing the roses. Our winterfeeding of hybrid tea, floribunda, and grandiflora roses is a fiveingredient recipe that invigorates the roses in your landscape. You will have surging growth, gorgeous green leaves, bountiful buds, exceptional flowers and new cane growth. A customer introduced this five-ingredient recipe to our nursery many years ago, having used it with great success. A gal named Bonnie at Orchard Nursery and Florist in Lafayette had shared it with her. This
Nicole is the Garden Girl at R&M Pool, Patio, Gifts and Garden. Contact her with questions or comments at email@example.com
Prepare, from page 15 The passive method is generally one way and may include monitoring the radio or television for information, posting a notice on a bulletin board, posting to social media, or sending an pre-formatted text or email to inform others of your situa-
Family owned & operated since 1981
TO CORRECTLY PRUNE A ROSE, LOCATE THE FIRST FIVE-LEAF BRANCH and make your cut about a half-inch above the bud that is nestled at the base of the five-leaf branch as shown in the diagram above. The ideal angle is 45 degrees, slanted parallel to the direction of bud growth. Do not cut too close to the bud or at too sharp of an angle. Source: erthturf.com
tion and state of being. Do you have a GO Bag? This is just what it sounds like, a small quantity of things you need, consolidated in one bag for you to grab if you have to leave your residence rapidly for any reason. Some items to include would be any medication you require, a bottle of water and a food bar, flashlight, first aid kit, cash in small denominations, a
change of clothes, and an Emergency Medical Information Sheet, (a document that has your emergency contact information, health insurance information, medication list, pertinent medical history, allergies, etc.) Generally less that 10 percent percent of respondents to “are you prepared” surveys state that they feel that they are sufficiently organized to handle
an all-hazards type of event. Given that 90 percent are not ready, it would be wise to remember, when the unexpected happens and we need a hand, the first place to look is at the end of your own arm. Rich Veal has 39 years in public safety and teaches CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) classes in Clayton and Concord.
Our passion is pets.
Happy Valentine's Day! Bring in this coupon to get
Show your pet some extra love this holiday!
your purchase of $50 or more
Offer valid at Rodie’s Feed & Pet Supply through 2-22-2013 Limit one per customer.
SAVE THE DATE
April 20th, 2013 10:00am - 2:00pm
Community Tack Sale
Come to Rodie's to find local horse owners selling their tack! Call to reserve your prime selling spot!
Raffle prizes, BBQ, horse vendors & more!
Open 7 days
Mon - Fri 10 to 6
While supplies last
IAMS Lamb & Rice 29 lb. bag Reg. $40.99
Tired of shopping for tack online without seeing or feeling it?
Fleece Dog Sweaters Dogs need sweaters in chilly weather too!
Rodie’s Gourmet Wild Bird Seed 20 lb. bag Wild birds love the mealworms in this mix!
Sat 9 to 6
Sun 10 to 4
8863 Marsh Creek Rd. in Clayton
2 outstanding meals served daily Weekly housekeeping & fresh linens Concierge style service Chauffeured transportation daily On-call 24-hour professional staffing
Extensive program of diverse recreational and cultural offerings Full service beauty salon Community gardens for green thumbs Library and computer center