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June 28, 2013

Eye of Diablo Beacon lifted from its longtime post on Mt. Diablo summit Iconic light structure will get needed rehab before Dec. 7 return


MAYOR’S CORNER Ideas to escape the summer funk School’s been out for just two weeks. Have the summer doldrums set in already? Clayton and its surrounding areas are full of great activities for kids and their parents. Try exploring our great Clayton trail system. We have many trails that will get you off your beaten track and up into our beautiful hills to enjoy the views and solitude. We have maps available at City Hall and posted in the kiosk at the Black Diamond Plaza (at Main Street and Marsh Creek Road) that show all the trails in Clayton and our surrounding area, including our side of Mt Diablo.

See Mayor, page 9


Scott Hein

SHELL MARTINEZ REFINERY AND MAXIM CRANE WORKS DONATED THE CRANE AND CREW SERVICES to safely move the beacon from atop the Summit Building to a waiting trailer where it will undergo a much needed rehabilitation before being returned to its perch in time for the Dec. 7 anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The project was spearheaded by Save Mount Diablo.

All eyes were on the “Eye of Diablo” as a crane lifted the 1,500 pound, eight-foot-tall beacon, swung it in a gentle arc and carefully placed it on a custommade platform attached to a truck and trailer. A small, private crowd of park rangers, Save Mount Diablo members, Pearl Harbor survivors and their wives, engineers and media quietly watched the operation. The beacon was heading down from its perch atop Mount Diablo in SMD’s efforts to make improvements to it before Pearl Harbor Day 2013, Dec. 7. The beacon was secured in place before making its slow decent down Mount Diablo to a warehouse in Concord for its

See Beacon, page 7

Local Girl Scout Emma Hall brings family fun to Clayton Enter the annual Pioneer July 4 Photo Contest and win cash prizes Shutterbugs and patriots, grab your cameras and celebrate “Community and Country.” Capture the spirit of the day and share your favorite images with our readers. Anyone who receives the Pioneer, either by mail or carrier, is eligible to enter. The contest is open to all, adults (over 12) and kids (12 and under.) The winning photos will be published in the July 12 issue of the Pioneer.

Each individual may submit up to three photos, but only one can win a prize. Submit snapshot size prints (nothing bigger than 5” x 7”) AND a CD with hi-resolution files. DO NOT email entries. Photos must have been taken during this year’s July 4 Celebration in downtown Clayton. On the back of each photo, put your name, address, phone

See Contest, page 2

Concord’s Singing Flag turns 25 The Calvary Temple Church will present highlights of the last 25 years at the annual event in Brubeck Park

JOHN JACKSON Special to the Pioneer

On July 2, 3 and 4, more than 30,000 fans are set to celebrate not only our country’s birthday, but something that has sparked patriotism and good-will in the hearts of Concord and Clayton residents for a quarter-century: The 25th anniversary of Concord’s Singing Flag at Dave Brubeck Park.

See Singing Flag, page 6

What’s Inside Around Town . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Book Review . . . . . . . . . . . .17 Classified . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5

Don’t let the parade pass you by

June 29 event features volunteers, performers from throughout the community DENISEN HARTLOVE Clayton Pioneer

There’s still time for late entries in Clayton’s July 4 Parade. So, put a coat of wax on the old pick-up, stock up on crepe paper streamers and load up the back with flag-waving patriots. Join your friends and neighbors, clubs, scout troops, and marching bands in this most patriotic and traditional celebration of our country’s independence. Fill out a parade application at the city of Clayton website at, or pick one up at City Hall and get it in by the end of the day on Monday. No advance entry is needed for the Kiddie Parade – just show up with decorated bikes, trikes, scooters and the family dog at the flagpole by 10 a.m. The day starts early with the annual Rotary Club pancake breakfast at 7 a.m. at Endeavor Hall. The parade begins at 10 and Clayton’s Cw Wolfe will be back on the grandstand this year as Grand Marshall.

People seldom equate fun with learning to administer CPR – despite instructors’ insistence that the correct rhythm goes along with the aptly-named, Bee Gees song, “Staying Alive.” That said, courtesy of local Girl Scout Emma Hall, fun and community activities, including learning about disaster preparedness and hands-only CPR, are going hand-in-hand at the Clayton Family Fair and Picnic on June 29. There, families from Concord and Clayton are invited to bring a picnic – or grab a meal from a nearby restaurant – and join in with community groups from throughout the area for a free, interactive event in the Grove. Families can expect free activities such as face painting and balloon animals provided by local Girl Scout troops, a painta-rock-like-an-insect activity sponsored by the Clayton Garden Club, a railroad exhibit at the Clayton Historical Museum,

Club News . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Community Calendar . . . . .14 CVCHS Reporter . . . . . . . . .9 Design and Décor . . . . . . . .15 Directory of Advertisers . . . . .5 Doctor’s Orders . . . . . . . . . . .3

Fashion Over 50 . . . . . . . . .15 Garden Girl . . . . . . . . . . . . .18 Performing Arts . . . . . . . . . .16 Pets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13 Pioneer Photo Album . . . . . .17 Pocket Parenting . . . . . . . . . .8

Jason Rogers/Clayton Pioneer

WHEN CLAYTON COUNTS DOWN was cancelled, Girl Scout Emma Hall stepped into the breach, planning and organizing the first Clayton Family Fair and Picnic to replace the free event.

and a vintage police car on display. In addition, live music will be performed by groups including Bingo Schmingo, Greg Fogg, and a children’s violin ensemble. The cherry on the sundae of the event’s entertainment will be a demonstration by the Clayton Bikes stunt team at the end of the evening. The event is the brainchild of both local Girl Scout Emma Hall and Clayton Mayor Julie Pierce. Pierce made public her desire to plan new family activi-

Speaking of Sports . . . . . . .12 Sports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Sports Shorts . . . . . . . . . . .12 Tech Talk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 Travels with Woody . . . . . . . .4

ties after the annual Clayton Counts Down New Year’s Eve event was cancelled in 2012, due to declining attendance. Although not as popular an event as the Concerts in the Grove (which attract thousands of people on Saturday evenings throughout the summer), the absence was felt by many residents. In response to comments that there was nothing for families to do in Clayton, Pierce put

See Family Fair, page 13

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Page 2

Clayton Pioneer •

Around Town

July 4 photo contest,

Ouimet’s new doors open after crash

from page 1 number, email address and whether you are entering as an adult or child. For kids, please include age. IMPORTANT: Drop off your prints AND the CD at the Clayton Pioneer office NO LATER THAN 5 p.m. THURSDAY, July 5. Please do not e-mail entries. Photos will be judged on overall quality, composition and how well the image captures the spirit of the day.

June 28, 2013

Ouimet Bros. Concord Funeral Chapel is finally 100 percent operational with repairs complete, following the accident on Dec. 30 of last year in which a car crashed into its front entryway, injuring three people.

The doors themselves were the last item to be installed, which were the most noticeable missing item throughout the construction. Though the chapel has been open all during the construction, the lobby was

Prizes: Adult, first $100, second $75, third $50. Kids, first place $50, second $35, third $25.

completely shut down and the chapel was not put back into operation until the beginning of March. The accident was caused when a teen driver, whom witnesses say was speeding, lost control and crashed into the front of the building. According to Senior Deputy District Attorney (Juvenile Division) Daniel Cabral, no charges have been filed against the teen driver. The crash occurred just as services for Clayton Pioneer photographer Mike Dunn were about to begin. The services were moved to the Salvation Army Church across the street. Dunn died of cancer on Christmas Eve 2012.

Claycord 4-H shines at county fair The buzz was all about the Claycord 4-H Club at the recent Contra Costa County Fair when its Outdoor Gardening Project won First Place

Professional honor for Dr. Judy Yee

Heather Clary wins in SMD photo contest CVCHS student, Heather Mary Clary, 17, was a big winner in the recent Save Mount Diablo Scholastic Photo Contest. Heather’s photo was among 375 entries and was the first place winner in the Landscape Division. Photographers Scott Hein, Hank Perry and John Finger served as judges. “The photo had all the things that people look for in a Mount Diablo landscape,” said Hein, “The rolling green hills of spring, clouds against a rich blue sky and the sun shining through the branches of a heritage oak.” “And the well-used, homemade rope swing makes you wonder about the generations of children who might have enjoyed playing there in the shadow of the mountain.”

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and the Director’s Award, and the club’s Bee Project took home the Best In Show ribbon for youth panels. Senior Cailtyn O’Connor was awarded First Place in Dog, Rabbit and Poultry Showmanship. She heads to Sacramento in July to compete in Small Animal Master Show-

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manship at the California State Fair. These were just some of the projects the Claycord 4-H members participated in this year. Other included cooking, goat, woodworking, shooting sports, sewing and veterinarian science. The club meets the second Tuesday of each month during the school year at the Farm Bureau Building on Clayton Road. To receive an email notification of the parent meeting in late August, send an email request to the club at

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June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 3

Summer is here, and so are the rattlesnakes It seems this year is a particularly good year (or bad, depending on your point of view) for rattlesnake sightings. Clayton resident David Lipton has seen two of them in his Petar Court yard in the past few weeks. Lipton lives just below the old seminary property. The first one was pretty small and not worth much concern, said Lipton. The second one, however, was another story. “I was in my backyard checking out my tomato plants when I heard what sounded like air escaping from a needle valve on a car tire. It sounded like it was coming from one of the ventilation holes in the house. I looked for the source but couldn’t find it. I started to come in the house when I heard it again. I turned

David Lipton





areas as well as on the trails.

Don’t get rattled by snake bite and we have to share our world with them, especially if we want to enjoy the great outdoors. Here is a brief review of rattlesnake bites (along with some dos and don’ts):


DOCTOR’S ORDERS There are few things that can cause an immediate visceral fear in humans as a rattlesnake. Maybe it’s due to the fact that rattlesnakes are reptilian (we tend to like mammals better) or maybe it’s because they’ve been so vilified in movies and literature that we have become programmed to loathe them. However, like them or hate them, rattlesnakes serve an important role in our ecosystem

THE BITE In general, symptoms of a rattlesnake bite include, but are not limited to, pain, swelling, numbness and tingling, bruising and blister formation at the site (the swelling may rapidly progress). Systemically, one may experience chest pain, shortness of breath, vomiting, taste changes, muscle spasms and tremors. However, if you are bit, even if you don’t have symptoms at this moment, you should get to a local hospital quickly.

When you arrive at the hospital with a rattlesnake bite, an IV may be placed and blood work taken. You may receive an ECG and you may have an X-ray taken of the bite site to make sure there are no retained pieces of rattlesnake teeth. Depending upon the severity of the bite you may be simply observed in the emergency department or you may be admitted to the hospital and given antivenom (which is very expensive). The length of your hospital stay will vary on the severity of the bite. If the swelling is extremely bad you may require surgery. DOS AND DON’TS: • Do walk on well-traveled trails. • Do wear over the ankle boots.

• Don’t hike alone. You may need someone to get help. • Don’t step over logs or rocks where snakes like to lay. Rather, step on them. (The logs or rocks, not the snakes.) • Don’t pick up a rattlesnake! Most bites are on the hands (and most are on the hands of young men who like to ignore this advice). To all young men out there I will say it again, “Don’t pick up a rattlesnake!” • Don’t kill or capture the snake. There is still a risk that you could be poisoned with venom yourself if you aren’t careful.

See Snake Bite, page 5

and saw the snake right next to the house under a rosemary bush. It was mad - all coiled and rattling away. Not visible from above.” “The snake was only about two feet long, but sure looked bigger to me. I was using a big lens on my camera, for obvious reasons. We’ve had snakes before but were less worried because we had cats then. Now we have dogs — small ones who would just stick their noses right in the snake’s face. Not good.” “There are guys out now clearing the weeds from the hillside behind us. I’m hoping this will open up the area for hawks and other snake predators to see the rattlers and help keep them in control. We’ll see.” The Northern Pacific Rattlesnake is not particularly aggressive. Should you see one on the trail or in your backyard, give it plenty of room. Don’t get between the snake and its escape route, and a bite is highly unlikely. However, if cornered, they will strike. Dogs are particularly vulnerable since they are likely to run up to the snake and bark. It seems Dana Hills is a popular place for snakes to hang out, especially in the areas that back up to the open space. They love the moist shade under decks are frequently coiled up in the corner of a porch or garage. If you see a rattlesnake in your yard, at the playground or in a populated area, you can call the Clayton police for help, says Clayton Police Chief Chris Thorsen. “Or, you can exterminate it yourself.” “If you see a rattlesnake on the trail,” Thorsen says, “Go the other way.”

s t r e c n o C he Gro T in

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6 to 8:30 p.m. At the Gazebo in The Grove

Set up chairs and blankets on the lawn after 4 p.m.

July 6 Livin' In The USA A Cross-Country Music Trip: Fully themed and costumed "all hits" cover band

July 20 Mixed Nuts Dance music from the 50s to today.

August 3 Live by the Groove Enjoy the sounds of your favorite music from the 70s, 80s and 90s.

August 17 Flashback Six-piece band featuring hits from big band/swing, early rock 'n' roll, Motown/soul, R&B/funk, classic rock, disco and country.

August 31 The Chicago Tribute Authority This upbeat tribute band plays the music of the greatest hit bands of the last 45 years.

Sept. 14 East Bay Mudd This 10-piece cover dance band with a powerful 4man horn section, will keep you on your feet asking for more.

For more band info, go to Chairs and blankets may be set out after 4 p.m. on concert days.

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Concord $569,000 Garaventa Oaks – Beautifully appointed & completely updated 4BD/3BA home. Kitchen offers granite, ss appliances, cherry cabinets, breakfast bar & nook. Downstairs living areas w/gorgeous cut-glass windows. Mature landscaping and stamped concrete patio will have you enjoy the private yard year-round.

$539,950 Concord Parkmall – 3BD/2BA home on corner lot offers newer roof, private backyard and sparkling pool. 1,921 sq. ft. is open and offers dual pane windows, two-way fireplace and a wet bar. Fantastic location near to schools and shopping.

Clayton $508,000 Downtown Clayton – Sparkling 3BD/2.5BA home with designer paint, recessed lighting, soaring ceilings and crown moulding. Living room with marble fireplace, Master suite has window seat and walk in closet. Gorgeous yard with patio, sun shade, storage shed and plush landscaping.

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Concord $220,000 Roundtree Condo – One story end unit has 2BD/1.5BA with hardwood floors, fresh paint & kitchen with granite countertops. Washer/Dryer closet is super convenient. Walk to nearby restaurants, shopping, and schools. Nice community amenities including pool.

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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Page 4

Clayton Pioneer •

The Floor Store s 4th of July Sale. Up to 50% Off. 18 Months 0%. No Sales Tax. From Sunday June 30th to Sunday July 7th, carpet, hardwood, laminates, tile, & stone – and a lot more in every category throughout the store – will be marked down as much as 50%. And because we know the Founding Fathers wanted it this way, you’ll pay no sales tax on any purchase of any size!

June 28, 2013

Beautiful Croatia survives but with scars We recently took a driving trip through the western portion of Croatia, one of several independent countries that emerged after the breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1980s. Our first stop the city of Rovinj, an active fishing village on the Adriatic Sea, located the Istrian Peninsula of northwest Croatia. The city was first settled by the Romans, and spent several centuries under the reign of Venice. The strong Italian influence remains to this day as both Italian and Croatian are considered to be the official languages of the city. Many people speak at least some English, and along the coast many also speak Italian. We hiked through Rovinj’s picturesque old town that features narrow curvy cobblestone streets that date back to the 14th century.

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Croatians converted the emperor’s palace rooms WOODY WHITLATCH into shops and homes. At its TRAVELS WITH peak, nearly 9,000 WOODY people lived inside its walls. Today the landmark palace is a major tourist destination filled with shops and restaurants. Many of the restaurants – influenced by Croatia’s allure to young people from throughout Europe and the U.S. who flock to visit or study there – piped in loud rap and techno-pop music. Sometimes that wasn’t conducive to a relaxing meal! Our next destination was Dubrovnik. Driving south along the coast from Split to Dubrovnik was very much like a cruise down Highway 1 along California’s central coast. As the road curves along the mountainous Croatian coastline there are spectacular views of the Adriatic Sea. Dubrovnik is often referred to as the “Pearl of the Adriatic.” This pearl suffered significant damage from bombing attacks during Yugoslavian war of the early 1990s. Reconstruction efforts have restored much of Dubrovnik to its pre-war beauty, but some mortar shell damage is still evident. The main tourist attraction in Dubrovnik is the old city that is surrounded by a nearly 1.5-mile-long walled fortress. We walked on top of the wall and were treated to views of red-tiled rooftops inside the fortress and the sparkling blue Adriatic outside the western wall. Inside the walled city are residences and a thriving commercial marketplace. Restaurants with outdoor seating fill the streets and alleyways. Motor vehicles are not permitted inside the walled city. Our final Croatian destination was Plitvice National Park in the Dalmatian Mountains along the Bosnia-Herzgovina border. The highlight of our walk was the view of an array of waterfalls that seemed to dance in the sunlight. Travelling through Croatia we experienced a young country with a rich history. The time capsule old cities were remarkable, the landscape was beautiful, and the scars from a recent war showed us fragile our world is.


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June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Snake Bite, from page 3 P.O. Box 1246 6200 Center Street, Suite H, Clayton, CA 94517 TAMARA AND R OBERT S TEINER , Publishers TAMARA S TEINER , Editor P ETE C RUZ , Graphic Design P EGGY S PEAR , Copy Editor J AY B EDECARRÉ, Sports PAMELA W IESENDANGER , Administration S TAFF W RITERS : Denisen Hartlove, Pam Wiesendanger, Peggy Spear

We remember Jill Bedecarré - Her spirit is our muse


MB but not bigger than 6MB. You can also mail or bring your print to the office and we can scan it for you. Also on the website are forms for calendar items, events & press releases. 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 name, address and daytime telephone number. We will not print anonymous letters. E-mail your letter to Letters MUST be submitted via E-mail.


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Total circulation of the Clayton Pioneer is 15,500. Papers are delivered to households in ZIP codes 94517, 94518 and 94521. In Clayton, all papers are delivered Every Door Direct by the US Post Office. We cannot start or stop individual addresses. All Concord delivery is by carrier and delivered twice a month on a Friday morning. To stop delivery for any reason, call the office at (925) 6720500 or email If you are NOT receiving the Pioneer, please check the distribution map on the website. If you live in the shaded area and are not receiving the paper, please call us or send an email to If you are not in the shaded area, please be patient. We will come to your neighborhood soon.

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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 resident in our home delivery area. Submit on our website and be sure to attach a JPG photo that is at least 3

SUBSCRIPTIONS To subscribe, call the office at (925) 672-0500. Subscriptions are $50/year and are not pro-rated for mid-year stops.

If you are bit: • Don’t panic. • Don’t cut the bite and try to suck out the venom. It doesn’t work and you may cause more damage by doing so. • Don’t use a “venom extractor.” Despite what the package insert says, medical literature hasn’t proven that it works and it could cause harm. • Don’t place a tourniquet or tight band on your arm. It doesn’t help and it may harm you. • Do wash the area with water • Do remove rings, watches, bracelets, etc. on the affected extremity, before any swelling starts. • Do mark and time the area of the swelling so that the medical experts can see how quickly the swelling is progressing. • Do immobilize the extremity (put in a neutral position-not necessarily above or below the heart) and minimize your activity. • Do get to an emergency room as quickly as you can.

Have a great summer and be careful. You don’t want to spend your vacation in an emergency department. A FEW RATTLESNAKE FACTS Rattlesnakes are poikilotherms (that’s a great term to throw out at parties), they can’t regulate their body temperature. Rather, they utilize the environment for their heat. That’s why they are not very active in the winter, but more active in the summer. There is no consensus as to whether a bite from a baby rattlesnake is worse than a bite from an adult. I would recommend that you don’t get bit by either. The death rate from a bite when treated with antivenom is 0.28 percent, without antivenom is 2.6 percent. Antivenom works. There is a dog vaccine for bites, but there is no human vaccine. Rattlesnakes don’t always rattle before they bite. Dr. Birdsall is an emergency room physician at John Muir Hospital. Email questions or comments for him to

Classified SERVICES Senior Services Getting you out and about. Local mom, active in the community, offering non-medical and practical help: shopping, errands, salon, doctor visits. Transportation included. Seniors About Town, Terri Gerow at 330-5090.

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.

HELP WANTED Computer Tech Growing business has position for onsite pro computer tech in Contra Costa County. Must have experience in Windows and Mac OS, network repair and troubleshooting. ComputersUSA! 672-9989. Diablo View Construction is looking for a full-time employee. Requirements: Basic construction knowledge, driver’s license and car, hard working and dependable. Room for advancement. 822-5144.

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Auto Clayton Valley Shell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-3900 Beauty and Pampering Bella Mia Spa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .680-7792 Business Services Rising Moon Marketing & Public Relations . . . . .672-8717 Computer Services ComputersUSA! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9989 Net Solutions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-6029 Construction and Trades Appliance Repairs by Bruce, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-2700 Belfast Plumbing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .457-5423 Burkin Electric . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-1519 Diablo View Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .822-5144 Gary’s Home Repair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .787-2500 Iron Horse Concrete . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .595-3951 Steffan Smith Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .914-0497 Tipperary Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .216-2679 Dentistry Loftin Family Dentistry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-7997 Dining and Entertainment Clayton Club Saloon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .673-0440 La Veranda Café . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .524-0011 Oakhurst Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9737, ext. 205 Events City of Clayton – Concerts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .673-7300 Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .825-9090 Financial, Insurance and Legal Services DuRee, Daniel – The Law Office of . . . . . . . . . . .210-1400 Held, Chris – Morgan Stanley Smith Barney . . . .930-3815 Littorno, Richard – The Law Office of . . . . . . . . .432-4211 Mingham, Pete – Guild Mortgage Company . . . .906-8166 Prosperitas Wealth Management . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-7700 Travis Credit Union . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .800-877-8328 Van Wyck, Doug – State Farm Insurance . . . . . .672-2300 Funerals Ouimet Funeral Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .682-4242 Groceries Doorstep Farmers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .349-4568 Home and Garden Clayton Furniture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .686-2299 Clear Splash Pool Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .216-6245 Diablo Lawnscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .381-3757 Interiors Panache . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-7920 Nichols Landscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9955 Son Bright Window Cleaning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .674-9455 The Floor Store . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .969-9890 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 Cat Hospital of Clayton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-2287 Monte Vista Veterinary Hospital . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-1100 Pittsburg Pet Resort . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .432-7387 Rodie's Feed and Pet Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-4600

Help Fight Hunger Anna Chan – AKA: The Lemon Lady needs your help! Weekly commitment appreciated. For more info and contact numbers, go to Hospice of the East Bay Help needed at Hospice of the East Bay Concord Thrift Shoppe located at 5350 Clayton Road, Concord. 674-9072. For information contact Carmen Siems, volunteer coordinator at 887-5678 or

Recreation and Fitness All Out Sports League . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .203-5626 Anytime Fitness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-6700 Clayton Valley Bowl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .689-4631 Doodleton Ranch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .510-207-7467 Earthquake Arabians . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .360-7454 Kali Ball . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .276-0845

The Clayton Historical Society Museum needs a greeter for two hours per month from 2-4 p.m. Wednesdays or Sundays. Summer volunteers needed 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Saturdays and 6 – 8 p.m. Wednesdays, June through August; 4 – 6 p.m. on concert Saturdays. Call the museum at 672-0240 and leave your name.

(925) 798-3900

Directory of Advertisers

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 Landgraf, Linda – Prudential . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .876-0311 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


Call Juliana today for complimentary lunch, tour and ask about our move-in specials.

Page 5

Clayton Community Library Needs volunteers. Minimum age 13. Minimum commitment is 6 months. Some training provided. Contact: Arlene at 673-9777 or

Senior Services Chateau on Broadway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .686-1700 Courtyards at Pine Creek . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .798-3900 Montecito – Oakmont Senior Living . . . . . . . . . . .852-6702 Travel Travel to Go . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .672-9840

Courage Do the Right Thing

Page 6

Clayton Pioneer •

Steffan Smith Construction  

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June 28, 2013

Concord Police aim to put the brakes on car thieves The Concord Police Department is speeding up its efforts to curb car thefts, offering owners of commonly stolen vehicles a free anti-theft device known as “the Club.” Although reports of auto theft in Concord have declined significantly over the past five years, an analysis of vehicle thefts in Concord in 2012 revealed that some specific makes, models and years of vehicles are stolen at a significantly higher rate than newer model vehicles. The purpose of this antitheft program – dubbed Operation Wheel-Lock – is to educate vehicle owners about their vulnerability to auto theft and to offer The Club for use as an additional layer of security and theft prevention. Although no vehicle security device is 100 percent effective, the Club has proven to be an inexpensive and

effective auto-theft deterrent. The Club will be provided free of charge to the following car owners: Any vehicle owner who owns an operable 1985 to 2005 model year Honda, Toyota, Nissan or Acura passenger car, currently registered in Concord. Any vehicle owner who is employed within the city of Concord, who owns and commutes using an operable 1985 to 2005 model year Honda, Toyota, Nissan, or Acura passenger car. Since there are just 900 free security Clubs to distribute to the public, CPD must confirm the vehicle is operable and either registered in Concord or used to commute to Concord for employment. Car owners who are eligible should drive their vehicle to the Concord Police Department at 1350 Galindo St. Owners

should bring with them evidence of the vehicle registration address in Concord (DMV registration documents), and/or evidence of employment in Concord (paycheck stub, business card, etc.). The security Clubs will be distributed on a first-come-first-served basis from the Community Service Desk, located on the first floor. To confirm the availability of the Clubs or the Service Desk hours of operation, call (925) 671-3220 or visit Questions about the program can be directed to the Concord Police Department Investigations Division at (925) 671-3030. The purchase of all 900 security Clubs was paid for using 100 percent asset forfeiture funds and no budgeted city funds were used to finance this program.

Tuesday Night Blues, car show kicks off July 2 The Todd Wolfe Band will launch Concord’s 2013 Tuesday Night Blues series from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on July 2 in Todos Santos Plaza in downtown Concord. In addition to blues performers, the event will also showcase Cool Concord Cars, a vintage car show from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday Night Blues continues through the month of July with Frobeck on July 9, Loose Blues on July 16, Annie Sampson on July 23, and Mitch Woods and His Rocket 88s on July 30. Todos Santos Plaza is located in downtown Concord on Willow Pass Road between Mt. Diablo and Grant streets. Free parking is available in two municipal garages. For a complete listing of musical guests and event information, visit or call the downtown hotline at (925) 671-3464.


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As of May 23, Concord medical marijuana growers must move the plants indoors where they are not visible to the public. “We want the public to know that the police department is now enforcing the ban on outdoor medical marijuana cultivation,” said Concord Police Chief Guy Swanger. “It is our hope that all growers in Concord will move their opera-

tions inside and abide by the new regulations.” Under Concord’s ordinance, which was passed earlier in the spring, growers who are allowed through the California Medical Marijuana Program must cultivate marijuana in an occupied residence. Building inspections and permits may be necessary to meet code requirements for those retrofitting their property to accommodate indoor cultiva-

tion. The residence may not be within 600 feet of a school, grades K-12. Growers are limited to six mature plants or 12 immature plants per patient. Once a complaint is received, police will contact the owner to arrange an inspection. If violations are identified, the cultivator will be informed of the city’s requirements and given 10 days to correct the violations.

Singing Flag, from page 1

Who or what are the

Ghosts of the Multiverse? From local sci-fi writer, Harald Hansen, comes a novel of ideas that is both thrilling and hilarious. In a town very much like Clayton, Fade, an everyman, meets a ghost and gets introduced to the Multiverse. dept and ter, a i r olence ruci w v s d i o e est ters y go "Ther some d n hana ver is charac ke – d s n i a n h h li se anse deat “Han ogue, and d minor a ith rald H the writing a H . l n n tio ftly; at dia – major a dividuals w . t all de holds your i g l s l n n e i i l a t d i ved l are -wr and oncei lling, over ten or dul uperb rough all the s c s l i l e w u rit n th nse - d dly-w w ttentio ts…” e a i v e no se are no ba t.” iew i ook R er Rev d even l l e B i d r m w o e F o P r S h f T – ew ks s; far –The N of Boo scene

Back in 1988, the pageant was first presented to an enthusiastic, yet smaller crowd of 1,200 onlookers at what was then called Concord Boulevard Park. Now, 25 years later, the Calvary Temple Church-sponsored event has become a staple for several generations of residents. Linda Reynolds, director of The Singing Flag, has been a part of the event since its inception. She describes the event as “a fun family day where you can put a blanket down, barbecue with your family, let the kids enjoy the fun zone and have great time with each other.” Many people arrive as early as 6 a.m. in the morning to set their blankets out on the lawn to reserve their place for the day, Reynolds says. Jeremy Gould of Concord has made the event a yearly tradition for his family. “It’s just a great family atmosphere,” he says. “It’s also a place that brings us together with our friends and family, as well as being just clean wholesome family fun.” Don Osias of Clayton has similar

feelings. “We love the fact that it’s very much a community, fun thing to do that you can take anybody to,” he says. “It’s just a neat, fun event with a good feel for the Fourth of July, where we can celebrate that we’re a nation and say thanks to all the servicepeople who contribute. It’s just a nice way to enjoy the day.” The celebration’s highlight is a spectacular two-hour patriotic variety stage show, which begins at 7:30 each evening. The show is complete with a full choir, live dancing, cartoon and television spoofs, and an emotionally touching hero’s salute to military men and women. The evening is then closed out with Concord’s only aerial fireworks display. This show is the highlight of the day for many families. “I love seeing my kids’ faces,” says Becky Rajeski of Clayton. “The musical numbers, the dancing and singing – it’s fun and well done. And then the military part too. I always actually kind of tear up a little bit, because it makes me appreciate what our men and women have done for our country.”

Serving Northern California for Over 30 Years

If violations are still present after 10 days, the cultivation will be considered a public nuisance, and the grower will be issued a citation and fined up to $500. Unpaid fines may result in a lien placed against the property. At that point, the city may begin abatement proceedings in Superior Court. For more information, visit the city’s website,

John Gregg, the Lead Pastor of Calvary Temple Church, sees The Flag as the church’s chance to honor the country. “The Flag is a celebration and appreciation of America and of the freedoms and blessings we enjoy as Americans.” The Singing Flag commands an army of roughly 600 volunteers in choir, concessions, parking, security, acting and countless other areas. Ruth Andrews has served in several of these spots over the past 25 years, currently in the costume department. “It’s hard to describe what you feel like when you’re actually up on The Flag singing and you see how responsive the crowd is to how we honor our military. That part is the most awesome, it’s just really neat.” Lyndsie Smith, a vocalist at The Flag, says, “The Flag is like showing up at Christmas dinner… being around people you love, being around family you love and being a part of something good.” The Singing Flag will take place at Dave Brubeck Park on July 2, 3 and 4 at 7:30 p.m. For more info, visit or

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June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 7

Is the PC era really over? “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated,” stated Mark Twain, a great American icon. So it is with the personal computer, another American icon. One might think from the news that PC sales have tanked, perhaps even ended in favor of tablets or smartphones. While it is true that tablets and smartphones are having great success in the market, the fact is, the tablet sector isn’t really having a big impact on PC sales. Tablets, smartphones and network-capable devices represent a new growth sector of the business. “Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt,” Twain once quipped and the same can be said about the PC business. Just because PC sales aren’t on the front page of every newspaper doesn’t

mean the PC is dead. PC sales are still healthy and growing worldwide; however, smartphones are receiving all the press. “Fourth quarter growth was slightly less than a projected increase of 5.5 percent, but shipments of 92.1 million for the quarter still were the largest ever,” the International Data Corporation stated. Total shipments for 2010 reached 346.2 million, an increase of 13.6 percent, according to the IDC. By another metric, sales in the United States for the fourth quarter of 2010 represented nearly 6 percent of worldwide sales. In 2015 it is projected that PC sales in the U.S. will represent about 5.64 percent of the worldwide total, maintaining about a 6 percent growth rate

year-to-year. Microsoft dominates the market with nearly 80 percent of all new PCs running Microsoft Windows of some flavor, such as Windows XP, Vista, 7 and now Windows 8. Apple comes in at nearly 18 percent of sales, with all other operating systems making up the remaining 2 percent. When considering a new computer you shouldn’t be timid or hesitant about your decision. The PC will be around for many years to come. For several very good reasons the success of the PC will continue. Size, features, applications and power will propel the PC business for decades. Just try and crunch a database of names, addresses, zip codes, and the like from a tablet. Tablets, smart-

Bruce & Zoey

WILL CLANEY TECH TALK phones and some notebooks just don’t have the power or applications to achieve this. The intention for smaller devices like tablets and smartphones is for communication, communication and even more communication. I recently spoke to one of our customers and she stated her next PC will be a Mac.

See Tech Talk, page 12

Beacon, from page 1

We repair all major appliances, most major brands, and we’re local

36 years Experience Bruce & Holly Linsenmeyer Clayton residents Office: (925) 672-2700 Cell: (925) 956-8605 State of California B.E.A.R


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rehabilitation. The road was closed to guarantee safety for this giant dignitary. Before radar, the beacon shone regularly as a safety device for night flying and later graced the night sky once a year on Dec. 7 as a tribute to those who died in the Pearl Harbor attack. RESTORING THE LIGHT The lift-off began the hands-on phase of Save Mount Diablo’s project to rehabilitate the beacon in time to light the night this Dec. 7. “Save Mount Diablo has cosponsored the Beacon Lighting Ceremony for years,” says SMD’s executive director Ron Brown, . “The beacon shines for those who fought for our freedoms at Pearl Harbor, allowing us the freedom to fight to protect the wilderness in our backyard. We’re proud to be a part of restoring the historic beacon so the tradition can be continued for our Pearl Harbor survivors and our community.” Redwood Painting Company, owned by Clayton residents and brothers Charles and George Del Monte, were asked to do the painting and volunteered their services in support of the mountain in their backyard. The beacon is being stripped of paint using proper lead abatement procedures. After primer is applied, other repair work follows. Then the beacon is painted with four coats of durable, commercial grade paint in Cape Verde green. All work will be done by hand. “Be gentle,” is the direction Del Monte gave his staff. Other work includes repairing or replacing a cracked lens, bearings that could not be reached until the beacon was removed, and wiring. A tempo-

rary blinking red light is filling in for the original while it gets restored. The 1,000-watt incandescent bulb will likely be replaced with a 1,000-watt halogen bulb for slightly brighter output and longer lamp life. The beacon was visible up to 100 miles away and rotated six times per minute. Candle power and visibility are about half of each now. Work is due to be complete in time to replace the beacon by October, when the lift-off will happen in reverse. The rehab doesn’t come cheap. SMD raised $100,000 for the projects, thanks in part to a matching grant from the Dean and Margaret Lesher Foundation, said SMD’s communications manager Beryl Anderson. The foundation offered to match all donations to the Beacon Restoration Fund up to $50,000. Any overage goes to a maintenance fund for the beacon. According to Anderson, the final $10,000 needed to fund the project was received from Chevron, who had initially installed the aviation beacon as Standard Oil. Linda Padon, general manager of public policy and corporate responsibility for Chevron, says, “We built this beacon on the mountain in 1928 in support of the then-burgeoning aviation industry and are pleased to provide the final contribution needed for its restoration.” Brown asked volunteer Dick Heron to take charge of the rehab project, and he, along with volunteers John Gallagher and John Stuart, lead the project. “A lot of people have stepped forward, not only with monetary donations, but donations in kind,” Heron says. In

(925) 457-5423 License. 906211

SUMMER SPECIAL PEARL HARBOR SURVIVORS MICKEY GANITCH, CHUCK KOHLER AND JOHN TATE attended the beacon lift off. Kohler says he was trying to type a letter when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. He was very surprised. “No one had ever attacked before without declaring war. They call it ‘the last clean war.’”

PROTECTING THE COAST The beacon first shone in 1928 from its perch atop a Standard Oil Company tower bearing the letters S and D (for Standard Diablo) in large neon lights that blinked S and D in Morse code. Standard Oil financed the beacon, one of five, to provide the Pacific Coast with the same protection for night flying as the Midwest, in the days before radar. The beacon operated on the tower until being moved to the Summit Building in 1939. It went dark on Dec. 8, 1941, as part of a blackout after the attack on Pearl Harbor and remained so until relit on Dec. 7, 1964 as a memorial at the request of the Oakland Chapter of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association. It has illuminated the night each Dec. 7 since. Now, the Sons and Daughters of Pearl Harbor Survivors sponsor the annual event with Save Mount Diablo.

Retired park ranger Burt Bogardus kept the beacon operational, but over the years, lack of proper maintenance along with the elements, peeled the paint, cracked the lens and caused other damage. The beacon even had to be pushed manually for 45 minutes one year before it could run on its own. LABOR OF LOVE Because the beacon is owned by the state, it took special legislation to allow SMD to manage this steel labor of love. Gallagher and Heron wrote parts of the bill passed with the support of Assemblymember Joan Buchanan. Chuck Kohler, a Pearl Harbor survivor, says, “When the new beacon is lit, it will send out a message that you do remember – you do. It will honor us after we’re gone. You will have kept a promise to us as we kept our promise to you.” To donate or for more information about the beacon restoration, go to and click on Beacon Restoration.

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Page 8

Clayton Pioneer •

Club News


CONCORD MOUNT DIABLO TRAIL RIDE ASSOCIATION Trail Obstacle/Challenge Clinic in July The Concord Mount Diablo Trail Ride Association welcomes all riders to its Trail Obstacle/Challenge Clinic, July 5 through 7. Camp, swim and go on guided trail rides. Dinner is available on Friday and Saturday night. Riders complete obstacles based on the rules of the California State Horsemen’s Association’s Trail Trials pro-

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gram for the obstacle clinic. The challenge clinic is a timed obstacle competition completed by horse and rider team or a two-rider team. Please register by July 1. Camping reservations are required. The Concord Mount Diablo Trail Ride Association is at 1600 Trail Ride Road, Clayton. Go to for registration and more information.


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at last year’s


Several homes are already signed up for the tour, but more are needed. Homeowners from each of the three years of the Christmas Tour said how fun it was showing off their homes and decorations and meeting new people. If you or someone you know loves to decorate for the holidays, please join this year’s tour. Call the Clayton Museum at 672-0240 or JoAnn Caspar at 672-7680.

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HORSE AND RIDER obstacle clinic.

The Clayton Historical Society’s Christmas Tour is Dec. 15.

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June 28, 2013

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PAST PRESIDENTS IN ATTENDANCE WERE: (seated) Mary Tarantino (2003, 2004), Joan Bergum (2000, 2001, 2002, 2008), Shirley Boyd (2004, 2005); (first row) Sheila Driscoll (2006, 2007), Kathy Fristensky (1993, 1994), Linda Pasini (1996, 1997), Connie Weimar, (2011), Bev Woods, (1982, 1983, 1984); (back row) Joyce Atkinson (2006, 2007), Jan Rubiales (1974, 1975), Kathy Hester (2010), Merle Whitburn (2008), Denise Brown (1988, 1989, 1990), Nancy Boyle (current President), Jeanne Groschwitz (1999, 2000).

Supporters and members of the Clayton Valley Woman’s Club gathered at Boundary Oaks Country Club on June 11 to celebrate their 40th anniversary. The Clayton Valley Woman’s Club was organized and federated in 1973. Members are community-minded woman of all ages who provide community service by giving their time as well as donating goods and monies to many community organizations. Since the club was founded, members have organized fundraisers such as Christmas

home tours, casino nights, fashion show/luncheons, kitchen tours and mystery dinners. The upcoming 2013 fundraiser is the Fall Happening – An Evening with Dan Ashley and His Band PUSH at the Oakhurst Country Club on Oct. 13. Seating is limited so make reservations early. The club meets the second Tuesday of every month, except July and August. New members are welcome. For more info, call 672-9448 or go to

Over 60 railroad fans attended the Clayton Historical Society’s “Railroads of the Clayton and Diablo Valleys and Beyond” presentation and exhibit preview at Diamond Terrace on June 13. The presentation included slides of sites in the greater Diablo and Clayton Valley where trains once traveled. The information was prepared and presented by Steve Lane, museum director. Local musician Rail Dust Randy played an acoustic music selection of four classic railroad songs, including “Freight Train” by Elizabeth Cotton and the “City of New Orleans” written by Steve Goodman. The presentation ended with Clayton Valley native and museum director John Rubiales sharing his personal experiences growing up in the Clayton Valley. He also lived for a brief

period in Cowell, former town of the Cowell Portland Cement Company, where the little known Bay Point and Clayton Railroad once existed. The exhibit opening at the museum was on Father’s Day boasting over 50 visitors. The museum and exhibit are currently open Wednesdays and Sundays from 2 to 4 p.m at 6101 Main Street. Please visit the museum exhibit to learn more about past local railroads and look for upcoming, special railroad event announcements planned at the museum for this summer and fall. For more information, go to

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Riding bikes, enjoying a favorite toy or getting dirty in the mud may invoke fond memories of playing as a child. Play is what children do best and is an important part of every child’s development. Through play, children learn to develop cognitive, social, language and motor skills. Play allows children to be creative, problem solve, understand cause and effect, develop memory skills and discover the power of imagination. STAGES OF PLAY Most children ages 0 to 3 go through three main stages of play. Some children may need assistance and to be taught these stages depending on various factors and situations. One of the first stages is called Object Play. Young children learn to explore their world though the use of their senses; sound, sight, touch, taste and smell. They learn hand-eye coordination, motor and verbal

DARCIE AZZOLINI PAIVA POCKET PARENTING imitation, listening skills and cause and effect. Concurrently, children learn to interact with others through Social Play. This stage emerges when children play simple games with parents and caregivers such as peek-a-boo and pat-a-cake. Later in development children learn to interact with peers. This stage is critical for children to learn appropriate social interaction, how to express emotions, initiate play, sharing and turn-taking, along

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with conversation skills. Children learn through exploration, watching and imitating others. This is why it is important for adults to be mindful of our actions so that children can imitate and model to their peers the positive things that we say and do. The stage of Pretend Play and Imaginative Play is a fun and creative one for children. During this stage, children learn to pretend that objects are something other than what they really are. An example of this includes a child using a shoe as a phone, a stick as a spoon or a cup as a microphone. They learn role-playing skills and begin pretending to cook, feed a baby and drive a car. PARENT’S ROLE Parents are their child’s first teacher. By taking 30 minutes out of the day to read a story to a child supports their future academic success. Parents can point to pictures in a book, label

objects and ask open-ended questions about people, animals and objects. This stimulates expressive and receptive language, and encourages memory and attention skills. With infants and toddlers, parents can encourage floor time and exploration through toys and activities, and can encourage siblings and other members of the family to join in the play. It’s important for parents to learn how to have fun with their children. Pretending to be an animal, playing dress-up or hide and seek, as well as using imagination and creativity, is all educational. Introduce your child to various textures: soft, hard, squishy, bumpy, rough or smooth. Most importantly, however, the role of a parent is to create memories that will last your child a lifetime. Darcie Azzolini is Director of Developmental Services at We Care Services in Concord.

June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

CVCHS shines bright during the summer ROBBIE PARKER

CVCHS REPORTER The premier year of Clayton Valley Charter High School could be summarized with one statement; success is achieved through hard work and dedication. Over the past 11 months, the CVCHS has hired 15 new teachers and additional staff members, implemented several new academic programs, totally reformed many of the existing policies, renovated and beautified the entire campus, and introduced countless changes and improvements. The proud students of CVCHS illustrated the charter’s success through their own achievements at the traditional end-of-the-year award ceremonies. Countless students of all grades achieved high academic marks at the Renaissance Awards Assembly a few weeks prior to graduation day. During Senior Awards Night, the best and brightest upperclassmen were presented with the prestigious Altair awards in front proud and teary-eyed parents. Overall, it seems that the school achieved their mission to “make the move from good to great.”

Although the 2012-2013 school year has ended, the hard work and dedication on campus hasn’t. From June 24 to July 19, CVCHS will be hosting the Summer Bridge Program for incoming freshman. During the early weeks of August, these soon-to-be ninth graders will also be attending the weeklong Link Crew as part of the Freshman Transition Program. All of these activities help incoming students to become accustomed to the changes they must go through when transferring to CVCHS. These summer programs offer a unique experience not offered at most public high schools. The changes over the summer are not only in the classroom. The upcoming months mark the eagerly awaited remodeling and improvement of the entire Gonsalves Stadium. As part of the $6.7 million plan to renovate and beautify the entire campus, the stadium improvement consists of necessary upgrades to the track and field. Thanks to the funds from newly enacted Measure C, the CVCHS Governing Board of Directors already approved the plan to construct a new school track and stadium entrance, as well as improve concession stands, restrooms and storage facilities. As many in the Clayton Valley athletic programs already

know, the previous school year has been one of the greatest in the school’s history for athletics. Due to the success, especially in the football program, studentathletes at the school are training more vigorously than ever. In response, CVCHS will be hosting sports summer camps for football, girl’s basketball, girl’s volleyball, tennis, and cross-country. These summer camps are intended for students who wish to train and condition before their season. For the many students who are neither freshman nor athletes, CVCHS is offering programs packed with dozens of activities for anyone looking to enrich their vacation. Academic camps, college preparation classes, and even a few paid internships are available. The complete list includes offers from many prestigious and advanced math camps, attorney internship programs, classes at Diablo Valley College, the Cal State University Summer Institute, and even UC Berkeley. With the wide variety activities available to students, it is more than appropriate for CVCHS to pose the question, “What are YOU doing with YOUR summer?”

Page 9

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Aquatic athletes at Northgate High School – and many others in the Mt. Diablo Unified School District – have grown tired of explaining to

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Mayor, from page 1 If you’d like to venture a bit further, check out the San Francisco Bay Trail. The trail includes more than 330 miles of shoreline trails in the Bay Area. There are online maps, an interactive trail guide as well as a mobile app available at Remember to wear sunscreen, take a light snack and lots of water – it’s getting hot! Interested in history? Check out the Clayton Museum ( on Sundays and Wednesdays from 2 to 4 p.m., Wednesdays 6 to 8 p.m. during the downtown car show, and Saturday mornings 10 a.m. to noon when you come to the Farmers Market. Or, visit Black Diamond Regional Park just over the hill – it’s great fun to explore the coal mines and see how the founders of our area lived in the mid-1800s. Want more activity? All Out Sports League, who runs our Clayton Community Gym

activities program, has basketball and volleyball summer camps. There are also adult leagues. Check them out online at In addition to our Clayton Farmers Market on Saturday mornings, take a short drive to the Brentwood U-Pick farms and fruit stands. The map and schedule of fresh produce are online at Want something closer to home? There’s no better time than now to put your emergency kit together. Our Clayton CERT has prepared a handy “Family Preparedness All Hazards Resource Guide” booklet available on the city website at Look to the lower right of the home page and click on “read more.” Take some time to review the information with your family and put your emergency kit together so you are ready when an emergency happens. Our CERT crew will be at our

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experience at the school will become a reality. Of course, this project has been a long time coming, but it has always seemed out of reach, even for Linda Loza, the aquatics fundraising chair for See Northgate Pool, page 11

Farmer’s Markets and the Clayton Family Fair & Picnic, too, if you want to get more information. If your summer plans include some home remodeling/improvements, fence changes, pools, etc., please check with the Clayton Community Development Department (925-673-7300) and/or the county for land use and building permit requirements before you start any work. Don’t forget that our many restaurants and shops are ready and willing to help make summer easy and relaxing for you. Pick up some goodies and have a picnic lunch or dinner in one of our great parks or your own back yard. The sunsets are spectacular from the Clayton Community Park. Finally, I hope to see you all at the Clayton Fourth of July Parade. We still need a few more volunteers – let me know if you can help. As always, you can reach me at Let me know what you think!

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Page 10

Clayton Pioneer •

June 28, 2013

Sports Veteran CV educator takes athletic director position JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

The 2012-13 school year was one of transition and new beginnings as Clayton Valley High School re-emerged as Clayton Valley Charter. While the administration, operations, faculty and academics at the school underwent numerous changes, the school’s athletic teams continued in the same color uni-


Rec swim season fills the pools

Photo courtesy Dana Hills Swim Team

Local recreation swimmers are filling area pools for practices and meets this summer and having some fun along with the competition. Dana Hills Otters hosted the Valley Vista Barracudas of Walnut Creek last week in a Wild West Shootout. Chloe Wigton, a 10-yearold swimmer for Dana Hills, was in her best cowgirl getup for the meet. Dana Hills will host the 19th annual Devil Mountain Pentathlon July 13-14 with local teams Oakhurst Orcas and Walnut Country Stingrays part of the 1100 swimmers expected from the 15 rec teams taking part in the unique Clayton summer meet started by former DHST parents Mike and Tony Biel in 1995.

forms and played in the same league as they had done prior to the charter school designation. However, behind the scenes many changes were afoot. Greg Fister took over as athletic director last fall while nearly two-thirds of the varsity team head coaches are different from those at the end of the 2011-12 CVHS school year. Entering the second year as a charter school Eagle athletics will be led by Amber Lineweaver, who has been teaching at the Concord school since 1993. Lineweaver takes over Monday from Fister, who is now dean of students. He is also giving up his duties as cross country coach, the first coaching vacancy Lineweaver will be filling in her new position. The domino changes began when baseball coach Casey Coakley expressed a desire to return to full-time teaching this school year which opened up the dean of students slot he held in 2012-13. While the past year was one of transition it was also one of accomplishment as CVCHS won its first ever North Coast Section football championship and saw its girls softball and basketball teams reach NCS title games. As part of the Mt. Diablo Unified School District’s Measure C bond program the school installed a new black artificial turf field in Gonsalves Stadium over the Christmas-New Year’s holiday period and currently is completing the project with a new running track being laid. The blue running track is slated to be completed in mid-July. Although Clayton Valley is now a charter school the campus is still owned by MDUSD and thus benefitting from Measure C upgrades that also included the large solar program two years ago along with other new facilities and upgrades that have been added during the past school year. Next up for the stadium upgrade will be additional bleachers and a new snack shack. Those enhancements will not be done this summer as originally anticipated. Lineweaver’s first task will be to find a new cross country coach. Alumnus Michelle Howisey had coached the team for five years before stepping down for a new teaching position and Fister grabbed the XC reins last fall. The new AD was involved in the recent interviewing and selection of the boys and girls basketball coaches, Eric Bamberger and Paul Kommer, along with boys soccer coach Guillermo Jara

Jay Bedecarré photo

CLAYTON VALLEY CHARTER HIGH SCHOOL TRACK COACH DARREN NEWELL IS EXCITED FOR THE NEW RUNNING TRACK being installed this summer as part of Measure C. The new track will complete the project that began at the beginning of the year when a new artificial field was put in Gonsalves Stadium. The old track dated back to 2004. The new blue running track will be ready for Newell’s second season in charge when he expects to have the strongest track and field squad at the school in a decade with athletes like Sara Holt, Jessica Forrester, Tisi Allatini, Alex Rodriguez and Ben Davis leading the way. The old track was removed in mid-June.

II. As part of the charter school’s plan to have on-campus coaches, both Bamberger and Jara are joining the school faculty this fall. As she seeks a cross country coach Lineweaver will begin by looking at current CVCHS faculty for candidates. She mentioned that high school coaching pay is extremely low but the school was able to make a couple adjustments to help recruit for these important positions. The school doubled the stipend for its coaches while also making school facilities available at no charge for the coaches to conduct camps and clinics that bring in additional revenue. MDUSD coaches are required to rent school facilities and have a custodian on overtime, which add unnecessary costs. “We’re very happy with the effort of getting more on-campus coaches. They are available for grade checks, meeting with student athletes during the day and can be on hand as soon as school is over for practice,” Lineweaver says. She is also hiring junior varsity and freshman coaches for a number of teams. She will be reporting to former AD Pat Middendorf, who is director of operations, collaborative education and athletics. “I’m excited and nervous [about the new position],” Lineweaver says. She will continue teaching English

and serving as the school’s yearbook and newspaper advisor. She is dropping two physical education classes (she’s taught PE since 1998) and also will no longer be the school’s human resources committee chair, an assignment that was a “huge job” over the past year and a half as the school made the change to charter. When Lineweaver first learned of the athletic director position opening up she began taking an athletic administration certification course from the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association and expects to complete level one by the end of the year. Lineweaver hasn’t done any coaching but was an athlete at Pinole Valley High and has been involved with her children’s sporting endeavors. Daughter Andi was a volleyball player for the Eagles, earning all-Diablo Valley Athletic League honors as a senior in 2011. Her son Aiden will be a junior goalkeeper for Jara this winter. He also plays club soccer for Diablo FC 96 where his coach is former all-America keeper Chris Brown. “I’m excited to be attending games and supporting all of our teams,” she adds.

1978 Clayton Valley softball another NCS finalist team The Pioneer incorrectly reported in our June 14 issue that this year’s Clayton Valley Charter High School girls softball team became the first in school history to reach the North Coast Section playoffs championship game. Former athletic director Dee Billeter pointed out that coach Larry Fogelstrom’s 1978 Eagles also made it to the NCS finale before dropping a 4-1 verdict to Montgomery of Santa Rosa, which also won the Section title the following year but never since. Three of the players from that ’78 team are in the Clayton Valley Athletic Hall of Fame. Starry Suttich was enshrined in 2008 and her teammates Karey Sheehan Venegas and Kellie Ruiz Leffle in 2010. Suttich was a senior that year while Venegas and Leffle were both sophomores.

Kixie Chicks honored by Concord for soccer achievements The Concord AYSO Kixie Chicks under 10 girls coached by Joshua Thompson of Clayton and Jeff Steeley went undefeated for 28 games to win the Concord, Area and Section 2 (Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Northern California) AYSO championships last fall which landed them in this year’s AYSO California State Championships in Davis during March. The Kixie Chicks took fourth against Downey, Westchester and Santa Barbara and were happy to be among the 400 players who made it to State Cup from the 266,000

AYSO players who started the season. The team was awarded Certificates of recognition from the Concord City Council May 28 when Mayor Dan Helix proclaimed it “Concord American Youth Soccer Organization, Region 305 Day.” The team includes, bottom from left, Jenna West, Alexa Goodyear, Taylor Clark, Katie Gavin, Sophia Omerano; back row, Ariceli Castro, Sydney Steeley, Maddie Thompson, coach Thompson, coach Steeley, Kenzie Owens, Kayla Gomez and Zoe Hernandez. Photo courtesy Concord AYSO

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June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 11


CV Little League crowns champions for 50th season

Photos courtesy Clayton Valley Little League

FOR THE SECOND YEAR IN A ROW THE WHITE SOX WON THE CVLL MAJOR LEAGUE end of season tournament. The Giants topped the regular season standings but the Sox, who tied for second, then won the tournament again. The team includes, front row from left, Matt Hyland, Ian Grimmond, Colby Newton, Logan McMillan, Teddy Conger, Lucas Lauricella; middle row, David Wishnow, Eric Zimmer, Kyle Barry, Clayton Mahloch, Anthony Hughes, Quinton Mahloch; back row, manager John Mahloch and coaches Neil Josephson, Paul “Paco” Falkenstein and Dewayne Bianchi. Not pictured, coach Kevin Zimmer.

THE FORCE WERE CROWNED CVLL MINOR DIVISION SOFTBALL CHAMPIONS after winning the league tournament. The Force had a losing record in the regular season but beat the league leaders Bandits in the finale to earn a spot in the district tournament. The team includes, bottom row from left, Julianna Vandal, Emma Gius, Miya Quesada, Samantha Childs, Mia Impastato, Elian Goldstein, Katelyn Anderson; back row, manager Eric Gius, Katelyn Walling, Caela Heatherton, Sarandon Kamrud, Jenny Linderman, coach Chad Linderman, Katie Mirabella, Ellie Hilderbrand and Sophia Warnke.

MINOR B DIVISION CVLL CHAMPIONSHIP WENT TO THE CARDINALS of manager Mike Lauricella. The Cards included, front row from left, Andrew McCann, Ryan Ward, Jake Solis, Gabe Lauricella, Ryan Bomar; back row, Ian Alexander, Carter Kosturos, Drew Warner, Riley Claunch, James McCaffrey, Chase Newton, David Seeno and Christopher Luk. The team coaches are Ken Solis, Wes Bomar and Paul Kosturos.

THE MINOR A GIANTS WON THE CLAYTON VALLEY LITTLE LEAGUE TOURNAMENT to advance to the Tournament of Champions. The Giants squad included, bottom row from left, Christian Silveira, Christian White, Mikey Morano, Nate McDonald, Cade Talmadge, Ryan Sparks; middle row, Jason Zimmer, Grant Sielman, Dominic Russo, Cooper Moylan, Luke Linkhart, Mikey Mann; back row, coach Kevin Zimmer, manager Jeff Russo and coach Tom Sparks.

Northgate Pool from page 9 Northgate Community Pride Foundation, the group spearheading the project. “Imagine waiting a very long time for something, so long that eventually you begin to think it is out of reach and never going to happen,” Loza said. “For many in this community that is how we viewed the idea of having a pool at Northgate.” In fact, it is a common tradition at the school for elder classmen to tell incoming

freshmen that there is a pool “on the roof of the school.” However, last June, NCPF and school officials realized that with the help of Measure C bond funds, 90 percent of the funding was there. “From the beginning we have said that we needed to raise $750,000 of the $7.5 million needed for the project, a project that includes more than just the pool,” Loza said, referring to the new 3,500 square-foot Sports Medicine

facility, upgraded locker rooms, and the addition of bathrooms to the sports complex. However, the addition of the pool does come with some opponents who view the new project as a frivolous misallocation of funds, and would rather see them allocated to classroom programs. The “catalyst” for the project was the Measure C funds, Loza said. “By law that money is not available for additional sections, additional teachers, or general expenses,” Loza said on the $7.5 million being spent on the complex. “The bond money can only be spent

on capital improvements such as buildings,equipment, and other types of constructed facilities.” So where might the remainder of these funds come from? NCPF is staging a series of fundraisers, including a Texas Hold 'em Poker Night to be held in the fall. Loza says these will raise funds and community support for the aquatic complex, as well as other additions to the school. “To date we have raised approximately $450,000 through individual donations and grants,” Loza said on the remaining amount of funds to kick off the project. “The pool

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will provide an opportunity for new PE units and a home for our swimming and water polo teams. Many athletes and coaches from other Northgate sports will be able to use the pool for conditioning.” If all goes according to plan, the aquatic complex will open in the summer of 2014. For more information on the aquatic center, visit

All-stars start Little League tournament at Concord American LL this week Little League Baseball culminates each season with its international World Series in Williamsport, PA. Before getting to that finale all-star teams from leagues throughout the world compete in local tournaments. For Clayton Valley and Concord American little league all-stars that starts with the annual District 4 tournament and the two local leagues have been drawn to play their opening games against one another at Concord American fields beginning this week. The Clayton Valley AllStars in the 11-12 age group that ends the season at Williamsport include Thomas Conger, Derek Gardner, Ian Grimmond, Shane Hopfner, Matthew Hyland, Luke Mingham, Steven Ralston, Scott Rodriguez, Shuicki Rountree, Paris Ruiz, Logan Schoffstall, Charles Shuey, Jordan Teicheira and Jason Cannedy. Colin Cox and Kyle Gregerson are alternates. Manager is Dave Shuey with coaches Pete Mingham and Tim Wettstein. Manager Kevin Confetti and coaches Kevin Daly and Dave Rodriguez are leading the 10-11 all-starts for CVLL. The players are Jack Saylor, Daniel Ward, Jayson Downs, Derek Luedtke, Sean Curran, Jordan Davis, Riley Christiansen, Seth Gwynn, Joe Course, Lucas Lauricella, Eric Zimmer, Julian Rodriguez and Tristan Daly. Denny Curran and Devon Voight are alternates. The 9-10 all-stars are Eric Abbett, Mitchell Hansen, Joseph Hawk, Matthew Hubbard, Maxwell Keil, Lucas Linkhart, Clayton Mahloch, Quinton Mahloch, Sean Nimr, Andrew Pesmark, Aidan Reinwald, Charles Saylor and Jason Zimmer. John Mahloch is the manager and his coaches are Mike Hansen and Kevin Zimmer.

Page 12

Clayton Pioneer •

June 28, 2013

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A’s should lock up AL West title Coming into the 2013 major league baseball season, most people would have pegged the Texas Rangers or the Los Angeles Angels to win the AL West division. If an expert analyst was told before the season started that the A’s would win back-to-back division titles and take the 2013 AL West Championship, that expert would most likely give you a mocking grin and slight laugh. Saying to you condescendingly, “Sorry, but magic only happens once.” For all the doubters of the Oakland Athletics, that “magic” is happening again, and it isn’t really magic. It’s the dedication of a hardworking team and franchise that’s leading the A’s to their second AL West title in two years. The A’s won the AL West last season, but they were by no means the favorites to do so





again. With the Angeles shoveling out money to superstar Josh Hamilton, it was thought that they would win the AL West with ease. Comically enough, the Angels prove that money does not always buy championships, as the Angels are in second-to-last in the division as of June 19. Who is in first you might ask? Well the A’s of course, sitting at a record of 43

wins and 30 losses, three games ahead of the Texas Rangers. The A’s have had so much success this year primarily because of their offense. Oakland’s line-up has plenty of power and speed, a deadly combo for any baseball team, and it has allowed them to outscore their opponents by 53 runs as of June 19. Their pitching has been the most questionable part of their team so far this season, and could be their Achilles heel in the playoffs. With the exception of Bartolo Colon, the other four A’s starters have pitched average at best. Tommy Milone, Jarrod Parker, Dan Straily, and A.J. Griffin are all very young pitchers, with lots of talent. Like most young baseball players, there are growing pains though, and the A’s young staff has experienced that this

season. That is why the A’s should be in the market for starting pitching. Don’t get your hopes too high for the A’s to trade for a superstar pitcher. If they are going to trade for a pitcher, it will most likely be an older veteran arm that can eat some innings and keep the A’s in ball games, especially in the playoffs. The young pitchers on the A’s have great promise, but their inconsistencies could prove costly in a best-of-five playoff series. The AL West is easily the A’s division to lose, especially if they trade for another starting pitcher. With the Rangers posing the only real threat at this point, the A’s should have no problem holding off a team that’s offense is a shell of its former self. Email your comments or questions to

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Clayton Valley Charter High School coach Casey Coakley has a staff of current CVCHS coaches and players as well as Eagle alumni to provide baseball instruction to youngsters 6-13 years of age at the school. The final summer baseball school session will be held July 1-3. Each daily session runs 10 a.m.–1 p.m. Fee is $120. To reserve a baseball school spot or to get more information email

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES SOCCER SCHOOL IN CONCORD The San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer are holding their Regional Development School summer session at Boatwright Fields in Concord on Tuesdays from July 9 through Aug. 27. Girls and boys 5-10 years of age are eligible for the school which brings professional coaching experience and guidance to youth soccer players of all skill levels. St. Mary’s College head men’s coach Adam Cooper and Brazilian World Cup and Olympic player Tafa head the teaching staff. For more information visit the Earthquakes Youth Alliance Partner’s website at

CLAYTON VALLEY CHARTER ATHLETIC BOOSTERS GOLF TOURNAMENT JULY 22 The 22nd annual Clayton Valley Charter High School Athletic Boosters Club Charity Golf Tournament is coming up on Monday, July 22, at Oakhurst Country Club. The format is a four-person scramble (singles will be paired up). Shotgun start with box lunch is at 11:30 a.m. with dinner immediately following the tournament in the clubhouse. Interested golfers (21 and over) and sponsors can visit

NORTHGATE VOLLEYBALL CAMP FOR GIRLS NEXT 2 WEEKS Northgate High is hosting a girls volleyball camp for incoming 7th9th graders July 1-5 and another camp for 10th-12th graders July 8-11 at the Walnut Creek school. Sessions include 1-on-1 instruction as well as 6-on-6 play. They run from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. (except July 4). For more info visit or email


Mt. Diablo Soccer is holding online signups for the fall AYSO season. Players who register during June will be placed on a waitlist. Girls and boys 4 (must be 4 by July 31) through 18 are eligible for MDSA. Parents are strongly encouraged to also accept a volunteer assignment to assist MDSA operate. For more information email or visit


Diablo FC is now aligned with the San Jose Earthquakes and is encouraging boys and girls in the U9 through U18 age groups to visit the club website to get information on a player evaluation for the 201314 competitive season. Players can register today at and the appropriate age group coach will contact the player about a free evaluation.

FINAL FOOTBALL, CHEER SIGNUP FOR CLAYTON VALLEY FALCONS JULY 10 Registration is still open for Clayton Valley Youth football and cheer. Football is for ages 7-14 while cheer accepts ages 5-14. The final in-person registration day for the CVAA Falcons is on Wednesday, July 10, 68 p.m. at Mountain Mike’s Pizza by Clayton Bowl. The season starts July 29. For online registration and info visit

AYSO SUMMER SOCCER CAMPS THIS JULY, AUGUST UK International Soccer Camp instructors will be hosted by MDSA at Boatwright Sports Complex for three pre-season summer camp sessions July 8-12, July 15-19 and Aug. 5-9 in Concord. Boys and girls 5-14 years of age can take the camp in a half day (9 a.m. - 12 noon) or full day (9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.) format in order to hone their skills for fall league play. For more information or to register visit

TENNIS CAMP THIS SUMMER AT OAKHURST CVCHS tennis coach Rick Ortega is holding the Oakhurst Grand Slam Summer Tennis Camp through Aug. 8 on weekdays from 1-3 p.m. for high school players of all levels at Oakhurst Country Club. Contact coach Ortega for details at

DVC HALL OF FAME HONORING 1989 FOOTBALL TEAM The Diablo Valley College Athletic Hall of Fame will be honoring the undefeated 1989 Vikings football team early next year with induction into the DVC Hall on the 25th anniversary of its 10-0 regular season. Please email Hall of Fame founder and chairman Steve Ward at if you were a member of the team or know any of the players so they can be contacted about the event.

FALL YOUTH, ADULT PROGRAMS COMING TO CLAYTON GYM Fall leagues are taking signups now for All Out Sports League programs through Clayton Community Gym. Adult softball (ages 18 and older) and leagues for youth volleyball (8-16 years-old), rec basketball (416 year-olds) and Blaze AAU-style basketball will all be offered. There are different Aug. and Sept. deadlines for each program. For complete information, visit

CVCHS GIRLS VOLLEYBALL, BASKETBALL CLINICS, CAMPS OFFERED Clayton Valley Charter High School coaches will be offering girls basketball and volleyball camps this summer. Volleyball coach Dave Hobson ( will have a beginner/intermediate individual skills clinic July 22-25 and an intermediate/advanced team drills clinic July 29-Aug. 1. New basketball coach Paul Kommer ( is hosting a skills camp for middle school players July 29Aug. 1. Contact the coaches for more info on the clinics and camp.

BLAZE TRAVEL BASEBALL TRYOUTS COMING UP JULY 13-14 Blaze baseball is a member of USSSA offering 11U and 12U teams which play in highly competitive tournaments throughout Northern California. This is a fall travel team that competes in weekend tournaments during September, October and November. Tryouts will be held July 13 and 14 at Clayton Community Park from 2-6 p.m. These competitive teams carry only 11 players. For questions about the Blaze program or tryouts, contact Casey Copeland (510) 282-4986 or visit to register for tryouts.

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June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 13

Love your dog? Teach ‘leave it’ It is important to teach your dog a command that lets it know that you want it to ignore something that it is interested in. The “leave it” command is easy to teach, and could save your dog’s life. Here are some tips for teaching this all-important command. First off, remember that “leave it” is a permanent command. “Leave it” means leave something alone, forever. Your dog is not waiting for you to release it to take something that you have temporarily told it to leave alone. It has been told to leave something alone, and it does. Tip 1: Teach your dog to leave a treat in your hand alone. Have your dog sit next to you, wearing its leash. Have some higher value treats in your pocket or treat bag. Hold a lower value treat in the hand that is farther from your dog.


PET PALS With your other hand, hold your dog’s leash near your dog’s face. Hold the treat in your palm, as if you are offering the treat to your dog. As your dog goes for the treat, say “leave it” and gently bump the dog’s face away from the treat with the hand that’s holding the leash. As soon as it shows that it is willing to leave the treat alone, reinforce it with a higher value treat, Tip 2: Teach your dog to

leave a treat on the ground alone. Next, place the lower value treat on the ground in front of your dog. Say “leave it” as you put the treat down. Be prepared to bump your dog with your leash hand, if it goes for the treat as you put it down. If your dog tries to get the treat once it’s on the ground, immediately step in between your dog and the treat, and push your dog back with your body. If your dog does leave it alone, reinforce it with the higher value treat. Tip 3: teach your dog to leave a treat that it is walking towards alone. The next step is to have your dog moving towards something that you want it to leave alone. Leave the treat on the ground, and walk your dog away from it. Then, walk your dog towards it. As soon as your dog acts interested in the treat, say “leave it,”

and turn around. If your dog willingly turns around with you, reinforce it. It your dog attempts to pull toward the treat on the ground, then the next time you walk towards the treat, you need to say “leave it,” and turn around when you are farther from the treat than you did previously. That’s pretty much all there is to it. Of course, you will need to practice it repeatedly. And, once your dog has learned to leave one type of treat alone, you will need to practice with other things that you want it to leave alone; your garbage, your lunch, your cat, etc. Sue Skiff is the author of “How to Have a Well-Behaved Dog,” and the owner/operator of Silver Lining Pet Services, a company which provides dog training and pet sitting services. Learn more at or Email her at

Ban-Ban and Cupcake are ARF’s Stars



Family Fair, from page 1 out the word of her desire to plan a new event for families, but said she’d need help to do so. Meanwhile, Emma Hall, a 15-year old high school freshman, was in search of a community service project to work towards obtaining the prestigious Girl Scouts Gold Award, an honor comparable to the Boy Scouts’ Eagle Scout projects. According to the Girl Scouts, “this prestigious award challenges you to change the world – or at least your corner of it.” From serving as a counselor at bible camp, to producing with a friend videos advocating spaying and neutering pets, Emma is no stranger to volunteering. Her work on this scale of an event, however, inspired

even the normally unflappable Pierce to describe Hall’s plans as “ambitious.” “Emma has done all the contacting, persuading, recruiting friends and family, making ‘cold’ calls to interest groups to participate, designed the flyer, mapped the event, logistical planning etc.,” she said. “She’s learned how complicated a ‘simple’ event can be.” In producing the fair, Emma, usually a volunteer herself, garnered input from groups throughout the area. Hearing about a need for activities, community groups such as the Clayton Business and Community Association, Clayton Valley Charter High School and the Boy Scouts, among others, stepped forward to offer projects, games

Tech Talk, from page 7 I asked why. She said it was because Macs don’t get virus infections. Really? Where do my readers come up with such myths? I like Macs, but PCs running Microsoft products are “real” computers, in my opin-

ion, and the only ones capable of doing real work and playing real games. So if you’re thinking of acquiring or replacing your PC you’ll be in good company if you purchase a new PC running

and crafts for attendees. “We’re both so grateful every time someone helps with this project,” said Emma’s mom, Pam Hall. “When the girls came over from the other [Girl Scout] troops, they didn’t have to do it. Just knowing that they were all there, that Emma’s not alone in this thing, that was just a really nice feeling, that they were there to help.” Now, the only worry on Emma’s mind is whether the event will be a popular one in the community. “The more people you get involved, the better the party,” said Pam. “ People will know people. I’m hoping and thinking it will be good that way.” Pierce thinks so too. “It’s a time for the community to gather together and spend some quality time,” she said. “It’ll be good, wholesome family fun.”

Microsoft Windows 8. Next time it’s about video phone calls. William Claney is a professional computer consultant and technical writer. Will is the CEO of CUSA (ComputersUSA!) an IT repair and support center located in the Clayton Station shopping center. He is available for comments: 925-672-9989 and says, “retirement is overrated.”

7-month-old Ban-Ban packs a lot of spunk and personality into her ultra tiny frame. This bubbly, joyful girl is all about fun, fun, fun. She loves to play fetch with a ball, and is game to join you on life’s many adventures. Ban-Ban would benefit from Basic Manners or Small Dog Manners class, where she can channel some of her youthful joie de vivre into polite ways of seeking attention, and start her new life with her best (tiny) paw forward. The adoption fee for adult dogs is $225 and includes 60% off one 7-week training session. 1 1/2-year-old Cupcake is a beautiful spunky calico who will charm you with her personality. She loves playing with her wand toys, and would be a nice addition to your family. The adoption fee for adult cats is $50. 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,, or call 925.256.1ARF.

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John Manzeck to retire Clear Splash Pool Service is closing as of June 17, to allow owner, John Manzeck, to retire. Thanks to the Clayton Pioneer for being the best customer resource a small business owner could ask for. Several years ago, I sold more than half my business which included customers in the cities of Danville, Alamo, Lafayette and Orinda. I wanted to grow my business in the Clayton area, and found that my best source of new customers came through my ads in the Clayton Pioneer. Thank you Tamara for being a great "friend" to the small businessman! Your newspaper generated enough new business in my Clayton neighborhood that I was able to expand my client base by 40%! Thanks to all my loyal customers who have relied on Clear Splash Pool Service over the years. It's been a privilege to serve your pool needs.

– John Manzeck

Page 14

Clayton Pioneer •

June 28, 2013


IN CLAYTON June 29, July 6, 13 Farmers Market 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturdays. Diablo Street between Main and Center streets, downtown Clayton. Music: June 29, Steve Fread; July 6, Damond Moodie; July 13, Vintage. July 6, 20 Concerts in the Grove 6-8:30 p.m. Grove Park, downtown Clayton. Free. For a complete concert series list, see Page 3.


Save Mount Diablo programs listed are free unless otherwise noted. Go to and click on Activities/Guided Hikes for more information. 947-3535. July 3 Moonlight Hike in Clayton Hike along Peacock Creek towards Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve in search of nighttime wildlife. Reservations required. 8-11:30 p.m. Meet at the Clayton Park’n’Ride lot at the corner of Peacock Creek Drive and Clayton Road.


AT THE LIBRARY The Clayton Library is at 6125 Clayton Road. Programs are free unless otherwise noted. or 673-0659. Through Aug. 13 Patty Cakes Story time for babies to 3-year-olds. Child attends with caregiver. Drop-in 11 a.m. Tuesdays. Wednesdays Book Buddies A volunteer will read stories for children 3 and older. 1-2 p.m. Call in advance.

June 29 Clayton Family Fair and Picnic 4–7 p.m. in The Grove. Live music, free face painting, balloon animals, children’s games, booths, and entertainment, bike show by the Clayton Bikes Stunt Team. Contact for more information.

June 28, 30 “Otello” Presented by Festival Opera. Verdi’s masterpiece “Otello” is a coproduction with West Bay Opera. 8 p.m. June 28, 2 p.m. June 30. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. 943-7469.

Through Aug. 15 Picture Book Time Story time for 3- to 5-year-olds. Child may attend without caregiver. Drop-in 11 a.m. Thursdays.

July 4 Pancake Breakfast and Parade The day begins with the Clayton Valley Sunrise Rotary pancake breakfast at 7 a.m. at Endeavor Hall, 6008 Center St., followed by the parade down Main Street at 10 a.m. Breakfast: $5 adults; $3 kids. No registration for Kiddie Parade. Register for main parade at

June 28 - 30 “The Lady Scribblers” Butterfield 8 New Works Series. This historical comedy follows female playwrights clamoring to get work produced in 1690s London. 1835 Colfax St., Concord. $7-$18.

July 8 Clayton Library Book Club Sunny Solomon leads the discussion of “State of Wonder” by Ann Patchett. Book club open to anyone who would like to join. 7 p.m.

June 29 Authorized Madness Presented by Ready or Not Improv. 8:15 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $15. 943-7469.

July 11 Tea Party Come in your “tea time” best for stories and treats. 3 p.m. For children K-3rd grade. Registration required.

July 12, 19, 26, Aug. 2 Moonlight Movies in Clayton Bring a lawn chair, blankets, invite friends and neighbors and join us at sunset for a surround sound spectacular evening: July 12, “Hook”; July 19, “Tangled”; July 26, “The Incredibles”; Aug. 2, “We Bought a Zoo”. Movies begin at approximately 8:45 p.m. Clayton Community Church, 6055 Main St. Free admission.

IN CONCORD Thursdays through Sept. 12 Music and Market Thurs. night live music & farmers market. Market 4-8 p.m.; music 6:30-8 p.m. Todos Santos Plaza, Concord. Free. Music: July 11, Foreverland; July 18, Hotel California. July 2 Car Show and Tuesday Night Blues No registration fee for the car show. 5:30-7:30 p.m. Todos Santos Plaza, downtown Concord. Free. July 2 - 4 Singing Flag Featuring the Calvary Temple Choir. Free. 7:30 p.m., with fireworks at 9:20 p.m. Dave Brubeck Park, 4201 Concord Blvd., Concord. July 4 Jubilee and Parade The day begins with a 7 a.m. pancake breakfast, followed by the 5K Run & Walk, sponsored by the Concord Police Association to benefit the community and the Monument Crisis Center. Free Kids Run at 8:15 a.m.; 5K at 8:30 a.m. Register at Parade starts at 10 a.m. Todos Santos Plaza, downtown Concord.

ON THE MOUNTAIN Mount Diablo Interpretive Association programs listed are free with the exception of park entrance fee. Go to and click on Events Calendar for more information. June 29; July 13 Evening Poorwill Hikes Join Denise Wight to hike White Canyon and listen to birds of the evening. Bring a flashlight, binoculars and water. Meet at Mitchell Canyon trailhead. 7 p.m. July 20 Mount Diablo by Moonlight An evening nature hike in the Mitchell Canyon area. 6:30-9:30 p.m. Meet at Mitchell Canyon Visitor Center. Reservations required.

June 29 – 30 “Kabata” Music Repertoire presents this chronicle of the adventures of youth in the Philippines. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $15-$20. 943-7469. July 5 – 7 “The Killing Jar” Reading of new work by local playwright Jennifer Roberts about a young painter and curator in 1962. Cue Productions Live, 1835 Colfax St., Concord. $12-$18. July 6, 11, 18 Guitar Series July 6: Classical guitar by Exaudi Duo. July 11: All acoustic guitar by the Gonzalo Bergara Quartet. July 18: Slide guitar by Chakrapani Singh. 7:15 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $25. 943-7469. July 19 - 21 “In the Heights” Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony Award-winning musical about life in one of Manhattan’s most vibrant communities. Fundraiser for Children’s Hospital and Research Center in Oakland. Diablo Valley College Performing Arts Center, 321 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill. $12-$25.

FUNDRAISERS June 29 Craft For Life Bring your own craft project or participate in a card-making project (supplies provided) for a day of fun and making new friends. Goody bag, lunch and snacks included. Benefits Clayton’s Relay For Life for the American Cancer Society. 10 a.m.–3 p.m. KinderCare, 6095 Main St., Clayton. $25. Contact Brenda Righter at June 29 Open Mic Night Calling all singers, songwriters, musicians to perform for the community. Beverages and goodies available. Fundraiser benefits the church. Sign ups for performers at 6 p.m. Entertainment from 7-10 p.m. St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, 2925 Bonifacio St., Concord. Suggested donation $5 for adults; $3 for students; children under 12 are free.

July 15 Juggling Americana “Hijinks” with Thomas John, for all ages. 7 p.m. July 1 Pajama Math Fun with patterns, matching, sorting and more for children ages 3-5. 7 p.m.

SCHOOLS July 27-28 CVHS Class of 1963 Reunion The two-day event begins with a 3 p.m. tour of Clayton Valley High School, 1101 Alberta Way, Concord, on July 27, followed by a no-host pizza party at 5 p.m. at Skipolini’s, 1033 Diablo St., Clayton. On July 28, there will be picnic 10 a.m.-7 p.m. at Clayton Community Park, 7411 Marsh Creek Road. Contact Linda Amos Shelton at

GOVERNMENT 1st and 3rd Tuesdays Clayton City Council 7 p.m. Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. 6737304 or 2nd and 4th Tuesdays Clayton Planning Commission 7 p.m., Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. 6737304 or 1st, 2nd and 4th Tuesdays Concord City Council 6:30 p.m., Council Chamber, Concord Civic Center, 1950 Parkside Dr.

Meeting dates and times for local clubs and organizations are listed at Click on ‘Links’

June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Fashion pearls that are hot again JUDITH MARSHALL

FASHION OVER 50 With fashion’s ever-revolving door, here are some trends that you might want to revive, if you dare. The Perm: This isn’t the curly bob of the 80s – it’s a new process with more gentle chemicals designed to produce soft waves and save your hair from the heat damage of a curling iron. White Eyeliner: This staple came back into the spotlight at the Spring 2013 shows. Models wore a basic cat-eye with black liquid liner first, then added a strong line of white just above it. Instead, try a white (or beige) liner on your bottom water line (inside lash line) to open up your eyes and make them look bigger. Sephora has a waterproof, richly-pigmented pencil for $5, so you won’t have a big investment if you don’t like the look. Colored Mascara: This time around the chosen hues are plums and violets, meant to bring out the natural flecks of

green and gold that are already in your eyes. Try Benefit BadGal Mascara in Plum, $19. Faux Lashes: While for some, false lashes have never really gone out of style, the new trend is less Tammy Faye and more natural. To get the look, skip the unwieldy strips – a few small clusters will do the trick. Or you can snip a strip in half and glue the shortened pieces to the outer corner of each eye. Since the edge of the lash is naturally more lush, this looks more authentic. Plus, you’ve just doubled your lash wardrobe. Before applying the fakes, curl your own lashes and sweep on a coat of mascara. After you’re falsies have dried, draw black liquid liner over the lash line and apply a coat of clear mascara to blend the fakes and real lashes together. And remember: never use the glue that comes with the kit. Since the 1960s, Duo waterproof lash adhesive has been the go-to choice. Choose the clear or dark tone. False lashes are low-commitment and because you can nab a decent pair for only $5 at the drugstore, you’ll never be left with buyer’s remorse.

Pearls: This isn’t your sweet, delicate 1950s version of the gem beloved by Jacqueline Kennedy and Audrey Hepburn. We’re talking multiple strands –

Page 15

Take a Vacation from Your Car Payments when you move your auto loan to Travis

layering different sizes and lengths. Or try pearl-encrusted brooches on dark lapels or pearl chandelier earrings. And don’t save them for evening. Nothing looks fresher than a mixture of pearls and metals with jeans. Wearing pearls today means forgetting about the rules and going over the top. Live long and pester! Judith Marshall is the author of “Husbands May Come and Go but Friends are Forever,” available on Amazon.

For custom designs at home, steal a page from the experts

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DESIGN & DÉCOR For some people, coming up with a design pallet for your home is a piece of cake. The process of combining colors and fabrics and finding furnishings that are appropriate for your home and your lifestyle is literally as easy as spending a few hours online, writing down your shopping list and heading off to the market. For others, creating a design pallet can feel like you’re recreating the wheel. If you categorize yourself with the latter description, don’t fret. Everyone has an inner designer just waiting to make his or her debut. Finding your design style takes time and patience. A well designed home is not created overnight. So, breath in, breath out. Here are some tips on where to find inspiration and create your personal design file. Magazines are still a great resource for finding design ideas. Flipping through popular magazines like House Beautiful, Elle Décor, Architectural Digest or Veranda, to name a few, you can find everything from trendy paint colors and fabrics to before-andafter photos of successful design projects. You may stumble on a page that has exactly what you’re looking for in the way of a dining room chandelier, or maybe you will come across a unique color pallet for your master bathroom. I love the articles that are attached to the photo spreads describing how or why the designers or home owners were inspired to create what is shown. The back story elements are really what brings a project to life; there’s so much more to a project than just a pretty picture. Retail stores, home tours and designer showcases are great design outings. Yes, it’s super easy to shop online, but at some point you really need to make time to physically test out the furniture

you’ll be purchasing, feel the fabric you’ll be using for your bedroom drapery, and actually paint a tester square of paint on your wall before you buy 10 gallons for the entire interior of your home. Home tours that allow you to see what other home owners have created, and designer showcases that present the best and most current in interior design, are really interesting ways to see firsthand the custom designs, as well as speak with the individuals who have created these designs. From home and garden cable shows, online blogs and the social media sites focused on home design and décor, finding a design idea for your home is really about being inspired by what someone else has created. It’s not necessarily about duplicating each and

every design detail. For example, you might find a beautifully designed bedroom online. The space is a generous 400 square feet with many windows taking advantage of a seaside view, and French doors that open to a tumbled-brick patio. Many of us probably won’t be grabbing the sledge hammer anytime soon to demolish our existing bedrooms to achieve this look, but the design details listed there are things that are very much attainable, and by scaling them to fit your living space, you will end up with something just as lovely, and completely custom. Jennifer Leischer is the owner of J. Designs Interior Design based in Clayton. Contact her with questions, comments and suggestions at


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*This offer is for refinance of an auto loan from another lender. Cannot be combined with other consumer loan offers and is not valid on existing Travis Credit Union loans or loans paid to individuals. To qualify, auto refinance applications from another lender must be submitted on or after June 1 and no later than August 31, 2013. Coupon required to receive $100 offer. Auto refinance loan must be at least $15,000 and member must have valid registration in order to qualify for this offer. $100 will be deposited into primary member’s savings account within 45 days of the loan funding date. Member is responsible for applicable tax consequences associated with this offer. Please consult your tax advisor. Rates based on creditworthiness and age of vehicle. **90 days deferred payments: The interest on your vehicle loan will continue to accrue from the date your vehicle loan is funded and transferred. Federally insured by NCUA. Everyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in our 12-county area is eligible to join. Certain requirements may apply.

Page 16

Clayton Pioneer •

June 28, 2013

Performing Arts Four Performances only!

July 19-21 Diablo Valley College, Pleasant Hill The Peter Pan Foundation presents

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Leslie Noel Musical Direction

Sierra Dee Choreography

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Young Clayton actor reaches for new ‘Heights’ GARY CARR Special to the Pioneer

He’s been Bat Boy, The Joker, Snoopy, Peter Pan, Willy Wonka and an Irish revolutionary. Jacob Ben-Shmuel just graduated from Clayton Valley Charter High School and is ready for new roles when he enters the drama program at UC Irvine this fall. But he has one more show before he heads down south. He’ll be playing a lead role in the Tony Award-winning musical “In the Heights,” July 19-21 at the DVC Performing Arts Center in Pleasant Hill. The show is produced by the Peter Pan Foundation as its summer fundraiser. Jacob lives in Clayton with parents Chris and Jon Marshall and sister Jordan, a Sophomore at CVCHS. Jacob is a talented singerdancer-actor. At CVCHS, he won both the drama and vocal music awards and was one of only two singers at the graduation ceremony, receiving a standing ovation from his classmates for his rendition of “I Can Go the Distance.” The opportunities he got at school, particularly as a member of the Clayton Arts Academy, are not lost on him. “Performing at CVCHS meant that I was always working on something,” Jacob says. “Because there were so many shows and performance opportunities, I was able to constantly

for trusting him with larger and larger parts. Playing the leading role of Peter Pan in this year’s production of “Wish Upon a Star,” Jacob said, was “a true honor.”


practice and do what I love. “ Earlier this year, Jacob played The Joker in “Batman: the Musical, in 3D,” for which he wrote the book, music and lyrics with his friend and classmate Travis Cook Johnson. He also directed and produced the show. It raised nearly $2,000, which the boys donated to PPF. In March, Jacob played the title role in “Bat Boy: The Musical” at Cal State East Bay, where he was the only high school student in the college production. It helps to be from a theatrical family. Chris and Jon Marshall had been stalwarts at the Willows Theatre Company, where Jacob and Jordan found their ways into numerous plays and musicals. Jacob also credits the Peter Pan Foundation’s Leslie Noel

Clayton Theatre Company sets auditions for fall musical


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If you heard roars of laughter coming from the direction of Endeavor Hall June 14 and 15, it was the comedy fundraiser benefitting the new Clayton Theatre Company. The successful event, starring Monique Marvez and Kyle Fitzgerald, raised the funds needed to stage the theater company’s first production, “The Robber Bridegroom,” which will run from October 16 through 26. A rousing, bawdy Southern fairy tale set in 18th-century Mississippi, “The Robber Bridegroom” is the story of the courting of Rosamund, the only daughter of the richest planter in the country, by Jamie Lockhart, a rascally robber of the woods. The proceedings go awry, thanks to an unconventional case of double-mis-

taken identity. Throw in an evil stepmother intent on Rosamund’s demise, her peabrained henchman and a hostile talking head-in-a-trunk, and you have the recipe for a rollicking country romp. Auditions for the play will be held July 14 at noon, July 15 at 7 p.m. and July 16 at 7 p.m. at Endeavor Hall in Clayton. Actors must be 19 and older, and be prepared to sing 32 bars of a Broadway song and do a cold read from a script. Call-backs by invitation only. Go to www.claytontheatre and click on “Auditions” to download the audition forms. For more information, you can send email to Roxanne Pardi at or call (925) 222-9106.

PPF policy is to double-cast lead roles so as to spread performance opportunities among the teens. Jacob will share the role of Usnavi in “In the Heights” with Jeremy Padrones, an actor from Benicia. Jacob is Usnavi in the July 20 evening and July 21 afternoon shows. “Usnavi is the narrator of the story,” Jacob says. “Playing this part gives me the opportu-

Lafayette Library screens dance classic

Diablo Ballet and The Lafayette Library continue the popular Dance on Film summer series at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 10 with the one of the most popular movie musicals of all time, “Singin’ in the Rain.” “Singin’ in the Rain” starts Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor, and features such entertaining dance numbers as O’Connor’s hilarious “Make ‘em Laugh,” the


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The East Bay’s Festival Opera will present “Otello,” Giuseppe Verdi’s classic take on Shakespeare’s tragedy, “Othello,” for two performances only on June 28 and 30. The tale of love, jealousy and revenge is faithfully translated to the stage. “Otello”features some of the greatest music written for opera – and some of the most challenging to sing. Tenor David Gustafson sings the title

cheery tap-trio “Good Mornin’” and arguably the single most memorable dance number on film, Kelly’s rain-soaked performance of the title song. Admission is $5 for all ages, and proceeds benefit the Lafayette Library Foundation. All screenings take place in the Lafayette Library’s Community Hall, located at 3491 Mt. Diablo Blvd. in Lafayette. For more information, go to or call (925) 283-6513.

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nity to sing and rap. I saw the show with the Clayton Arts Academy a few years ago in San Francisco and have wanted to play this role ever since. It’s really a cool opportunity to get to tell such a great story.” “In the Heights” is LinManuel Miranda’s Tony Awardwinning musical about life in Washington Heights, a tight-knit Manhattan community. Noel will direct the production. PPF, which Noel founded, is based in Lafayette. All proceeds from the event benefit Children’s Hospital and Research Center in Oakland. For tickets and information go to

role, with soprano Cynthia Clayton as Desdemona and bass Philip Skinner as Iago. Maestro Michael Morgan will conducts the Festival Opera orchestra and chorus in this fully staged production Performances are June 28 at 8 p.m. and June 30 at 2 p.m. at the Lesher Center for the Arts,. in Walnut Creek. For more information, call 925-943-SHOW (7469).

Local playwrights will get their day in the sun as the East Bay’s Butterfield 8 presents its New Works Series, staged readings of plays penned by area authors. The series kicks off June 2830 with “The Lady Scribblers,” written by Michaela Goldhaber and directed by Heather Ondersma. The play is a historical comedy about women playwrights in the 1690s. On July 5-7, the company will present “The Killing Jar” by Jennifer Roberts and directed by Butterfield 8 founder, John Butterfield. The play revolves around a young painter’s relationship with an artist in the Philippines in 1962. The third play in the series is a one-act, “Welcome to Little Fork, Rene Lundstrom,” which runs July 12-14. Written by Harold Smith and directed by JanLee Marshall, the play looks at small-town Texas life in 1958, and the return of a prodigal son. On July 26-28, the company presents “The Man in the Box,” written and directed by Jean Butterfield. The play follows the adventures of a brilliant but socially retarded young man’s work performing as a robot. The series ends Aug. 2-4 with “Quadrille,” written by Melynda Kiring and directed by Alan Cameron. The historical tale features romance, secret plots, more secret plots, heroic duels and lots of food. The performances are at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, at All Cue Productions Live, 1835 Colfax Street in Concord. For tickets, call Brown Paper Tickets at 800-838-3006 or go to

June 28, 2013

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 17

Book Review

Autobiographical tale is no breezy memoir What a great pleasure to recommend “A Strong West Wind” by Gail Caldwell (Random House; 2007). When I finished reading this memoir early on Sunday of our Memorial Day weekend, I thought how fitting, since Caldwell’s father, a World War II veteran, is pivotal to her life story. The Texas Panhandle, that flat brown landscape of Armadillo and her youth, is also a key element, in addition to a landscape of books. Caldwell begins her memoir with a question: “How do we become who we are?” Her father “lit a fire in me that would stay warm forever,” and her mother’s long-held secret dream was “that I might become what she could not.”

SUNNY SOLOMON FOR THE BOOKS Caldwell looks back on her youth, including her bout with polio, with remarkable honesty and rather unassuming wisdom – an impressive feat, as her memoir ranges from the nearidyllic years of the postwar 1950s, through the drug-infest-

ed anti-near-everything of the 1960s and 1970s. As a child, Caldwell was “the kid who read too much, talked too little, cried inconsolably over novels even as I maintained a steady grip on my own uneventful life. And then, to my parents’ awe and terror, the changes of puberty threw me into adolescence like a bull rider out of a gate.” Caldwell writes of her cultural and intellectual coming of age with a gentle touch, avoiding the traps of whining and anger that trip up many other memoirs. “A child’s memories are mostly sensate – we’re not yet equipped with the vocabulary or analytic clout to make sense of what we see, and so we remember the cast of light, the smell or

signifier that elicits yearning or fear or joy.” Caldwell’s leave-taking from the Texas Panhandle took as many routes as years, from university studies, travels to other states, including the Bay Area (Berkeley in its most turbulent times), and often confusing but important steps into feminism. Through it all, her reflections on the powerful landscape of her youth and the importance of the books she read contain many of the answers to her original question. For every adult daughter of a tumultuous youth, every father of such a daughter and every mother who understands that relationship and has forged a mirrored one of her own with

See Books, page 18

Pioneer Photo Album Paul Johnson was relaxing in his backyard on an early afternoon in May when a darting flash of red caught his eye. Quick with a camera, Paul caught this winged visitor with his Canon T2i, 270 zoom at about six six feet.



The Pioneer is proud to spotlight our readers’ photos. Email your photo in a high-resolution format to with a description of the photo, where and when it was taken and a little about why you like it. Include your name and phone number. Then look for it in the next Pioneer.

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Page 18

Clayton Pioneer •

Let Dick Clark, Pope John Paul II smell up your garden

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GARDEN GIRL “Good nutrition brings good health, brings happiness. Thank you, Doorstep Farmers.” -Clayton resident, Leo Schindler

There is a saying that you should stop and smell the roses. I do, every chance I get. Many rose lovers and myself have noticed these past years that many roses just don’t have the fragrance that they used to. Where has all the smell gone? Rose hybridizers are now focusing on creating roses that are more disease- and pestresistant. They seem to have for-


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gotten one of the most important reasons that people enjoy roses, and that is their fragrance. Rose lovers have begun to seek out old-fashioned roses that are rich in fragrance. This search is harder than you may think, especially if you don’t know which roses to look for. Double Delight is one of the most fragrant roses available. This rose was developed in 1977. Double delight is a prolific bloomer with creamy pointed buds that open to expose a blush red. The fragrance of this hybrid tea would be described as a strong, spicy rose fragrance. Double Delight is more fragrant in the morning and evening hours. The flowers are large with 25-30 petals. Double Delight makes a great house-warming gift. Angel Face and Fragrant Plum are both exceptional lavender colored roses. Angel Face has been around since 1969. This floribunda style rose has a natural rounded shape. Lavender pink ruffled flowers are born in clusters, and the fragrance of Angel Face is a strong rose scented perfume. The younger flowers have the best

fragrance. You’ll bury your nose in the flower and inhale as much of the smell as you can hold. Fragrant Plum is a newer rose. It was created in 1990. Fragrant Plum is a grandiflora style rose. The flower begins with a nice, pointed bud that opens wide exposing a lavender petal with magenta edging. Fragrant Plum has a nice, fruity fragrance.

The Dick Clark rose.

St. Patrick is a wonderful yellow colored rose whose color can really stand up to our sun. St. Patrick is known for performing better as the summer grows hotter. The shape of each flower is very large with 30-35 petals. St. Patrick was introduced in 1996, and it became a fast favorite among rose lovers. The fragrance of the St. Patrick rose is that per-

Books, from page 17

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that daughter, this book is a must read. Caldwell now lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 2001 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for criticism, writing for the Boston Globe. That eastern landscape is a part of who she is today, but Texas is

also present, “The sky changes never and continually…” and “Most days, the offering you get from a Panhandle sky is beauty barely outdone by desolation.” What Caldwell leaves out of her memoir “are the mysteries for which there is no story; they are

fect, familiar rose scent. The white rose called Pope John Paul II has an intense powdery rose fragrance. Pope John Paul II is absolutely one of the most fragrant roses available today. The flower style on this hybrid tea rose is formal with 45-50 petals. For a white-colored rose, Pope John Paul II really stands up to our Clayton Valley sun. The Dick Clark rose is beautiful and fragrant. Blackish-red buds spiral open to swirls of cream edged in cherry pink. As the flower matures, Dick Clark’s color changes to a bright pink. The fragrance of this grandiflora style rose is sweet. All of these roses listed above make excellent cut flowers. Roses do take more care than other shrubs in the garden. They look better when regularly deadheaded. When you remove faded roses from your shrubs take care to prune back to a leaf with five leaflets, facing outward. Remember, at the end of this month it is time to feed your roses again. Nicole is the Garden Girl at R&M Pool, Patio, Gifts and Garden. Contact her with questions or comments at

the air that circles the breaths we take, and they shape our lives as surely as winter, war, God or luck.” A reader will feel “A Strong West Wind” long after the last page. Sunny Solomon is a freelance writer and head of the Clayton Book Club. Visit her website at for her latest recommendations or just to ‘talk books.’

June 28 clayton pioneer 2013  

Clayton Pioneer newspaper for June 28, 2013