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March 10, 2017


Major landslide closes Morgan Territory Road, cuts off access TAMARA STEINER Clayton Pioneer


City budget right on track at mid year

As we headed into March, finance manager Kevin Mizuno gave the City Council the mid-year city budget results. Once again, the city’s financial health is stable. Mid-year General Fund revenue was ahead of budget by 56.38 percent. Expenditures were at 50.29 percent, because many annual city expenses are incurred in the first months. Because of the long history of balanced city budgets, the residents are not subjected to the various ballot measures other cities propose to pay for general government operations. Fiscal year 2017-’18 appears to promise similar positive outcomes. This is exemplified through the leadership of city manager Gary Napper and the finance manager and staff, with critical oversight by the council’s Budget Committee of Vice-Mayor Keith Haydon and Councilwoman Tuija Catalano. On the maintenance side, the Maintenance Department, through its role in public landscape care, has weathered this rainy season with little need for repairs due to proactive clearance of stormwater drains and V-ditches prior to the downpours. The recent storm drain renovations around the hillside of Mt. Diablo Elementary School, in partnership with the Mt. Diablo School District, have resulted in no further mudslides onto Clayton Road from this sloped common area. That’s a welcome relief to motorists and maintenance crews alike. However, our friends and neighbors out on Morgan Territory Road were not as fortunate as the city of Clayton proper. A huge hill slide has rendered Morgan Territory Road impassable. Further, they have experienced loss of water and power. We need to keep them in thoughts and prayers, and, where possible, provide assistance. On the legislative side, the City Council approved a temporary moratorium on the state-led effort to require the placement of “parolee” housing in Clayton. Our local moratorium lasts until September. Before then, city staff must thoroughly examine the issue and outline options for compliance with the new state law. The City Council previously prohibited medical marijuana dispensaries or testing laboratories within city limits. However, the council has allowed the limited growing of the plant for personal use within the interior of individual residences. No outdoor cultivation of marijuana is allowed in Clayton, whether for

See Mayor, page 7

Tamara Steiner/Clayton Pioneer

MORE THAN 256 HOMES WERE WITHOUT WATER FOR A WEEK AFTER A MAJOR LANDSLIDE SNAPPED A WATER MAIN and collapsed a section of Morgan Territory Rd. on Feb. 24, closing the main access to the area indefinitely. With the road closed, the only vehicle access is a 15-mile, detour over a one-lane mountain road, also severely storm damaged, to Livermore.

For five years, California has been wishing for rain. Be careful what you wish for. You may get it. And we got it. And then we got more. And more. So much rain that flooding and mudslides have dominated the Bay Area headlines for weeks. San Jose, Big Sur, Sonoma. And now, Morgan Territory. With each big storm, mud and rockslides created an obstacle course on Marsh Creek and Morgan Territory Roads, often closing the road to through traffic. Locals maneuvered the mudcaked pavements and silently prayed for the rain to stop. Then things got really serious. On Tuesday, Feb. 22, county workers noticed that an entire hill on Morgan Territory Road, about a mile in from Marsh

See Slide, page 16

Event pays homage to Main Street ARLENE KIKKAWA-NIELSEN Special to the Pioneer

This year’s Creekside Arts event at the Clayton Library will present varying interpretations on the theme “Life on Main Street.” From the historic view of old Main Street presented by the Clayton Historical Museum to the “Life on Main Stream” ecological presentation, the events will reflect the commonalities of every community – whether human or animal in nature. Artwork and photos submitted for judging will offer international views along “Main Street” in different countries. The 14th annual event runs Friday, March 24, to Sunday, March 26, at the Clayton Community Library. Admission is free, with proceeds from art and craft sales supporting library materials for the creekside wildlife habitat.

Clayton artist Tammy Slezak is among this year’s participants. “I use vintage sewing thread, quilting thread and really fine fibers to make small sculptures, dollhouses, textiles and tiny, tiny teddy bears – some of the world’s smallest teddy bears at about 3 millimeters,” she says. Thirty years ago, Slezak started doing standard-sized crocheting, such as scarves, bedspreads and tablecloths. “I have an aunt who collected dollhouses and she asked if I could crotchet smaller things,” she recalls. “And I gradually got smaller and smaller.” In keeping with traditional Main Street events, the opening night will include a dog and pony show at 6:30 p.m. To add to the festivities, local artists will paint the show in progress. “I have Jack Russell terriers, LOCAL ARTISTS DISPLAY SOME OF THEIR WORKS, from left, Julie Van Wyk, Barbara Paul, Donna one in particular named Annie Locher, Sharon Petersen and Renaye Johnson, seated. “Creekside Arts has been a wonder-

See Creekside, page 7 event to share with my friends.”

ful way to show my artwork for the past three years,” Johnson says. “It has also been a fun

Cameras coming to city limit entrances TAMARA STEINER Clayton Pioneer

Police Chief Chris Wenzel outlined plans to install cameras at the four major entrances to town at the Feb. 7 city council meeting. An automated license plate reader (ALPR) and a situational awareness camera

What’s Inside

Around Town . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Arts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Community Calendar . . . . .11 Directory of Advertisers . . . .7 Letter to the Editor . . . . . . . .5 Sports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 School News . . . . . . . . . . . .8

(SAC) are proposed for the light poles at Tara Dr. at Clayton Rd., Yolanda Circle at Oakhurst Dr., Marsh Creek Rd. at Diablo Parkway and Pine Hollow Rd. at Pine Shadow. The ALPR captures an image of the rear license plate of vehicles entering the city limits, compares it to a database and alerts the police if the vehicle is stolen, has a warrant or involved in criminal activity. The ALPR identifies only the vehicle; it does not photograph the occupants. A second camera, the situational awareness camera, records the activity at the city

entrance. The SAC camera captures the vehicle and occupants and records all the activity at that location. The two cameras give law enforcement an edge in preventing and solving crimes. “These are not monitored surveillance cameras,” Wenzel assured the Council.” Nor will they be used to issue citations.” Nearby cities including Pittsburg, Lafayette and Orinda are using the cameras and have seen a noticeable drop in criminal activity. “The criminal element and their bad intentions naturally migrate to communities without them,” said Wenzel.

A few issues still need to be ironed out, said the chief. The city is working with PG&E for approval to use the power from adjacent street lights. Additionally, since the Pine Hollow location is in the city of Concord, Wenzel is hoping Concord will participate in the cost of that installation in exchange for access to the information. Estimated cost for installation of the four cameras is $118K with recurring annual cost of about $12,800 for the software, licensing and maintenance. “I’m excited,” said Council member Julie Pierce. “Technology can solve a lot

of issues all the way around. I think it’s fabulous.” The council was expected to approve the project at the March 7 meeting.

Save the Date

Clayton Cleans Up 2017

April 22 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

City Hall Courtyard

Postal Customer ECRWSS


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Clayton Pioneer •

Northgate group looking to form separate district

Around Town

Sewing studio finds monstrous way to give back

JOHN T. MILLER Clayton Pioneer

A Walnut Creek neighborhood group has filed a petition with the Contra Costa County Office of Education to withdraw from the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. The group gathered 6,137 signatures – well more than the 25 percent of the residents required – in an effort to create a new district that would include Northgate High School and its feeder schools: Foothill Middle School, and Valle Verde, Walnut Acres and Bancroft elementary schools. In a letter sent to the teachers and staff at all five schools in December, Northgate Community Advocacy for our Public Schools (NCAPS) stated their

dents of all ages and abilities. They decided the best way to celebrate their oneyear business anniversary was to find a sewing-based service project to give back to the community that had been so supportive of their venture. “Creating and giving seem to go hand in hand,” says Bradburn, a former Clayton resident. “Whether it’s homemade cookies or hand-sewn monsters, the joy that comes from making something and sharing it is exactly the same.” The pair’s custom mon-

Warp and Weft Workshops has ongoing sewing classes and workshops for kids and adults at 1009-C Shary Circle, Concord. For more information, find Warp and Weft on Facebook, email or call 925-628-9529.

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According to Terry Koehne, chief communications officer with the County Office of Education, the group faces “a very long and complicated process with a lot of intricacies and a lot of players.” Koehne said the superintendent’s office has 30 days to validate the signatures and proposed boundaries to declare the petition sufficient. The

See Northgate, page 9

Sharon Anderson caught this amazing shot of kites mating one morning in the Dana Estates neighborhood in Concord. “I had focused on the female perched in the tree when the male unexpectedly flew in to mate,” Sharon said. “I was so surprised, I could hardly hold the camera still.” The photos were shot with her A6000 Sony, 70-300 Zoom, ISO 500, 5.6, 1/2500.

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with the newly elected board hiring a superintendent and filling a small number of key district level positions.” They hope to retain all personnel at the schools, as well as all the current curriculum offerings.

ster class is popular with students. “The stuffed monsters give both kids and grownups the perfect opportunity to imagine, design and create something totally unique,” Bradburn notes.

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goal “is to create a smaller district that is more aware of, and responsive to, the needs of our educators and students.” MDUSD serves about 32,000 students and stretches over 150 square miles, encompassing a wide range of ethnic diversity and economic levels. The proposed Northgate Unified School District (NUSD) would serve about 4,200 students. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median income per household in the proposed NUSD boundaries is nearly $50,000 more than the current household income in the MDUSD. In their letter, NCAPS proposes “the district would be governed by a five-member elected school board, with the transition taking place over a year or more,

Pioneer Photo Album

RUTH MANNION AND LINDSAY BRADBURN Children at a homeless shelter in Bay Point have some new stuffed monsters to cuddle, thanks to students at Warp and Weft Workshops. Sewing studio owners Ruth Mannion and Lindsay Bradburn invited all their students to design and sew the creatures. They delivered 45 machine-sewn stuffed monsters to the Love-A-Child Missions Homeless Recovery Shelter earlier this month. Mannion and Bradburn love teaching hand and machine sewing skills to stu-

March 10, 2017

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Gorgeous Downstairs End Unit backing to tranquil wooded setting! 1 bedroom, 1 bath, approx. 696sf. Updated kitchen with granite & stainless steel appliances & updated bath! $255,000

Meticulous “Belvedere” Model in Peacock Creek at Oakhurst Country Club! 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, approx. 3911sf & rare 4 car garage & desirable downstairs bedroom & full bath! $1,095,000

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45 El Molino Dr . . . . . . . . . . $830,000 . . . . .2324 3045 Miwok Way . . . . . . . . . $1,040,000 . . .3606 1294 Shell Circle . . . . . . . . . $608,000 . . . . .1709 1055 Feather Circle . . . . . . . $670,000 . . . . .1639 263 Mountaire Pkwy . . . . . . $800,000 . . . . .2324 11 Mt. Eden Place . . . . . . . . $845,000 . . . . .2481

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Stunning “Winter” model in Diablo Ridge at Oakhurst Country Cub! 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, approx. 1595sf! Beautifully updated! Rear of complex with views of hills and City lights! $599,000


19 Long Creek Circle . . . . . . $439,500 1546 O’Hara. . . . . . . . . . . . . $640,000 219 Southbrook Place . . . . . $745,000 179 Mt. Vernon Drive . . . . . . $709,000 1033 Pebble Beach Drive . . $775,000 1286 Shell Circle . . . . . . . . . $610,000


. . . . .1075 . . . . .1549 . . . . .1805 . . . . .2018 . . . . .2873 . . . . .1709


. . . . . .3/2 . . . . . . .2/17/17 . . . . . .3/3 . . . . . . .2/16/17 . . . . . .3/2.5 . . . . .2/14/17 . . . . . .4/2.5 . . . . . .2/9/17 . . . . . .2/2.5 . . . . . .2/1/17 . . . . . .3/3 . . . . .$615,000

March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 3

$15 million donation boosts Carondelet expansion JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

These are exciting times for Carondelet High School. The Catholic girls school’s $38 million capital campaign received a tremendous boost last month with a $15 million pledge from the Hofmann Family Foundation. The pledge was announced the same day as the groundbreaking for a state-of-the-art athletic complex in Walnut Creek that will house seven Cougar

sports teams starting this summer. After the groundbreaking, benefactor Lisa Hofmann Morgan announced that her family’s foundation is pledging $15 million to Carondelet. Half will support need-based financial scholarships for students and half will support construction of a new Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM) center on the Concord campus. Her father, Ken Hofmann, founded a successful

homebuilding business that constructed thousands of homes in Northern California as well as commercial buildings, golf course and the Big C Athletic Club. Over the years, the Hofmann family and foundation have been generous donors to Saint Mary’s College and De La Salle High School. Ken Hofmann was also an owner of the Seattle Seahawks and Oakland Athletics. He is a member of the California Homebuilding Hall of

Fame. The De La Salle Academy for middle school boys is in the former Hofmann Co. headquarters in Concord, across from the Big C. “This is an incredible gift and an opportunity for our school,” Carondelet president Bonnie Cotter said. “This gift paves the way for us to complete our athletics complex and take on two other important priorities for the school: needbased student aid and STEAM education for women.” Morgan called the pledge a

historic occasion for her family, her daughters and the Carondelet community. “It is my hope that our family’s philanthropy will inspire others to do more, be more and imagine more for all the young women here at Carondelet and in our community,” said Morgan, whose five daughters graduated from Carondelet. Officials say the multi-million-dollar gift will allow Carondelet to advance its plans to build a high-tech STEAM center that will “enable the school

to continue innovating its curriculum and preparing young women for careers in these fields.” It will also permanently endow a scholarship fund to help make a Catholic high school education available to more families that would otherwise not be able to afford it. “This campaign represents the most exciting venture undertaken by the school since 1965,” Carondelet’s campaign director Sheila Gilchrist said, referring to the school’s founding.

Club News

12th Annual Festival of Tables and Fashion Clayton Valley Woman’s Club

and Fashion event on Saturday, April 22, at Concord United The Clayton Valley Methodist Church in Concord. Woman’s Club presents their Social gathering and opportu12th Annual Festival of Tables nity prizes at 11 a.m. Luncheon

by Rick’s on Second at 12 p.m. with the fashion show to follow. Fashions are by Have Bag Will Travel, an entertaining and informative theatrical tour of

Fundraiser committee members Merle Whitburn, Nancy Haramaki, Kathy Hester, Shirley Adams, Kathy Olson, Arlene Lewandowski, Dee Yount and Judy Disbrow organized this year’s Festival of Tables and Fashion fundraiser for the Clayton Valley Woman’s Club.





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Live Oak — Priced to sell 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath duet with no rear neighbors. High volume ceilings, fresh paint, dual pane windows and plantation shutters. 1,614 square feet with formal dining area & inside laundry. Fenced backyard with patio. Desirable court location. This one wont last!

Lynne & Kelly offer free staging on ALL LISTINGS

Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center

Enter the Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center’s annual fashion through the ages fea- Art and Writing Challenge for Contra Costa County middle turing a museum collection of and high school students. This year’s topic is “Do Your Little antique gowns and accessories Bit of Good.” Submission deadline is April 21. Awards premodeled by volunteers from sented to winners at awards dinner on May 13. For more Goodwill industries of the information, go to  or Greater East Bay. call the Center office at (925) 933-7850. Concord United Methodist Church is at 1645 West Street. Proceeds benefit Clayton Valley Woman’s Club charities and Clayton Business and Community Association scholarships. Reservation price The Clayton Business and shoulder and brisket) in a comis $45; seating is limited. ConCommunity Association is petition setting to award the tact Rosemary Harwood at hosting a Kansas City Bar- best in each meat class. Once a (925) 672-3490. beque Society certified bar- certified barbeque judge, one The Clayton Valley Woman’s beque judging class from 8 can apply to be a judge at any Club is a non-profit organization of a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, KCBS barbeque competition community-minded women who vol- April 15, at Endeavor in the world. Endeavor Hall is at 6008 Cenunteer and do fundraisers to donate Hall.  The class is designed to train cooks, competitors and ter St., Clayton. $125 per person. to the community. The club meets at average people to judge the Contact Rory Richmond at rrich10 a.m. on the second Tuesday of four standard meats of  for applicathe month, except July and August, beque (chicken, ribs, pork tion. at Saint John’s Episcopal Church, 5555 Clayton Road, Clayton. Guests are welcome to attend meetings and social events. For more information, go to their website at

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Dana Hills — Completely remodeled rancher with breathtaking views of Mount Diablo. 4 bedroom, 2 bath home with Anderson windows, French doors, Engineered hardwood floors and custom touches throughout. Gourmet kitchen with granite counters, wine fridge, stainless steel app. and breakfast bar.

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Near Downtown — Situated on nearly an acre, this expansive, custom home is perfect for entertaining. It features over 5,000 square feet of living space including 4 bedrooms and 4.5 baths. Stunning master bedroom with steam shower, fireplace and spacious walk in closet. Gorgeous chefs kitchen, au pair, 3 fireplaces and 2 attached garages. The park-like backyard offers a sparkling pool with beach entry, a built in bbq and a fire pit. Wonderful location, walk to downtown Clayton, walking trails and Mt Diablo. ing rs nd Offe e P le ple Sa ulti M





Rossmoor — Elegance meets functionality in this rare 2 bedroom, 2 bath wrap. Spectacular and total remodel by GTAP homes. Many high end touches and lots of storage. Gorgeous kitchen with window, pantry, granite counters and stainless steel appliances. Huge veranda with view of the hills. Call for more info. Inge Yarborough (925) 766-6896

Falcon Ridge — “Serenade” Model! 5 bedrooms + loft and 3 baths. Possible in-law quarters. Gorgeous gourmet enthusiast kitchen w/granite. Huge great room/kitchen combo w/ stone fireplace! Generous loft and master w/fireplace, jacuzzi tub, walk-in, large bedrooms, spa, grass play, patio, PRIVATE! 10+ Michelle Gittleman (925) 768-0352

Diablo Ridge — Gorgeous, setting on golf course w/views of hills & pond! 3 bedroom, 2 ½ bath with 2 car garage. Light open floor plan with vaulted ceilings, 2-way fireplace, sunny kitchen w/breakfast nook, formal LR, formal DR, private patio, master suite w/soaking tub, walk in closet, & more views. Heather Gray (925) 765-3822

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Making a splash with an entryway

Page 4

Clayton Pioneer •



A home’s entry is a busy collection of square feet. It can house everything from coat closets and shoe nooks to benches that store reusable grocery bags or a console for keys, mail and cell phone charging. Whether you call it an entry, mud room, entrance hall, foyer, lobby or the room with the door mat, be sure to treat this space like any other living area within your home. Add functional pieces where necessary and don’t forget to create

a little sparkle – the welcoming aspect to your home. It’s always nice to have some sort of storage in the entry. A well-organized coat closet designed with your personal storage needs in mind in always a bonus. It’s quite nice to be able to store away the clutter. If you have space to spare, a piece of furniture that provides storage and creates an artistic statement is a win-win. Consider a console with a pair of decorative ottomans underneath or a built-in bench with decorative cubbies above it to support baskets for everyone’s shoes along with the supplies for when you take your furry friend out for a morning jaunt. If space is truly limited, opt for a tasteful display of coat hooks or a built-in niche.

Include a decorative framed mirror so you can adjust your bow tie or apply lipstick as you’re running out the door. At ground level, an entry area rug needs to be tough to withstand the wear and tear of everyday life. Think wet rain boots and umbrellas, muddy baseball shoes, sandy paws and the constant comings and goings of family and friends who politely wipe their feet as they enter. I would stay away from the very chic jute or sisal rugs and mats. They provide a great look, but their natural fiber will not hold up long term in such a high-traffic area. Instead, consider wool or a recycled, synthetic fiber that not only looks chic but is made for the long haul. These rugs don’t fear shoes, paws or any dirty

Leigh Klock, Realtor Senior Real Estate Specialist Accredited Staging Professional

Coming in March

831 Coachman Pl., Clayton

This custom California Ranch home in the highly desirable Diablo Downs equestrian development nestled at the base of Mt. Diablo, boasts 4 bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths, 2500+ sq ft. of living space and bonus art studio/office. Natural light streams through this home showcasing the exposed gray-washed plank and beam cathedral ceilings and hardwood and tile floors. The nearly one-acre homesite features expansive gardens highlighted on a recent Clayton Home and Garden Tour and offers the perfect setting for entertaining or quiet meditation surrounded by stunning Mt. Diablo views. Offered at $998,000

March 10, 2017

UPS boxes that may come their way. Once you’ve tackled storage needs that are functional and decorative and thrown down a workhorse area rug, switch directions and add some decorative elements to make the entry pop. Find a fabulous piece of art to hang above the console or cabinet, along with two sconces. Look for decorative pillows to add texture and color to an upholstered bench or add an array of table-top baubles that feature the current season or simply reflect your design aesthetic. Leischer is the owner of J. Designs Interior Design based in Clayton. Contact her with questions, comments and suggestions at

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Editor’s Note: Kevin Parker is back with a new column after a sixyear hiatus. His original column, Hikers’ Haven, was a staple in the Clayton Pioneer from 2003 until 2011. Welcome back, Kevin.

With busy schedules and days short on sunlight, I try to focus on TOT – “time on trails” – during hikes this time of year. First, I look for places with short driving times. And the copious rain we’ve experienced this year makes choosing a trail that can handle the water without too much mud all the more important. These reasons and many more are why Lime Ridge is the subject for this month’s hike. On a rain-soaked Sunday, I was lucky enough to have this park all to myself as I stepped through the gate and onto the trails. From Ohlone Trail, pick up Paradise Valley Trail. The single-track path peels away from the hum of traffic within minutes and you find yourself meandering up a canyon on sandy trails with endless scenery. The mostly packed sand and soil trail make for excellent trekking during the uphill portion. Green hillsidecovered groves of trees are excellent protection from the wind and rain during the winter and sun during the summer. Paradise Valley Trail zigzags up to the top of the trail at the “radio tower.” The 850+ feet of elevation gain puts you atop Lime Ridge South. Views of

View of Suisun Bay from Lime Ridge trail

the surrounding 2,700 acres of oak woodlands, grassland savannah and chaparral make this park a must visit location. Please note: Lime Ridge Wildlife Preserve (the center section south of Ygnacio Valley Road) is off limits to dogs. Start your descent on Lime Ridge Trail, easily one of the best trails in this part of the county. Exposed limestone, shale and packed sand once again provide easy footing as you descend farther into the protected sections of Lime Ridge. Swooping arcs duck and dive through hidden hillsides as you dissect through a maze of trees that makes you feel miles away from civilization. The descent is steady, and the remnants of a working lime quarry can be seen if you know where to look. Near the pond, pick up Buckeye Trail for a short jaunt and turn uphill on Blue Ridge Trail for a quick and steep section of hiking. Step carefully as you navigate around trail creeks created by the overabundance of runoff. Veer left onto Ridge Trail and prepare for a “whoop-dedoo” rollercoaster of a trail that drops and meanders over the undulating grasslands. Rusty exposed pipelines and small quarry pits flank the trail as you steer closer to Ygnacio Valley Road. This trail suffered the most during the recent rains, resulting in a lot of muddy and puddle-ridden trail sections. Soaked socks and

Serving Northern California for Over 30 Years

shoes are unavoidable. Follow Ohlone Trail back to the trail head and finish the hike with a gradual descent back to where you started. It’s an easy loop for the entire family that can be completed in 1.5 hours. I’m glad to be back. Enjoy the outdoors.

You can contact Kevin Parker with comments or questions by email at

Walnut Creek Open Space/Lime Ridge Distance: 3.75 miles Duration: 1.5 hours Elevation Gain: 870 feet Getting There: Park off Montecito Drive at Ygnacio Valley and Cowell roads; there are no facilities

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Gardeners can celebrate Euphorbia

March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Euphorbia is a tough, drought-resistant evergreen that will thrive in almost any Clayton Valley landscape. Its interesting foliage and unique flowers are appealing. Euphorbia looks great surrounded by stone, along rock walls, near swimming pools or



in containers that are difficult to water. Many years ago, I learned about Euphorbia’s drought tolerance by accident when it was installed in the flowerbed of an English garden by Barbara, a longtime customer and experienced gardener. At the time,

Massa Organics grows rice and almonds – naturally DEBRA MORRIS Pacific Coast Farmers Market

Massa Organics offers their popular organic brown rice and almonds at the Concord Farmers Market on Tuesdays. Organic brown rice is Massa Organics’ claim to fame. They even built their home from rice straw, which they had plenty of after harvests. Its passive solar design is a prime example of what they stand for: living a sustainable life, growing organic and sustainable rice and almonds and raising grass-fed animals without destroying the environment and human health. Greg Massa’s Portuguese great grandfather developed the land, planting the first rice crops in the Sacramento Valley. The family kept the farm through a move to town. When they returned, he and his brothers learned to farm. Through college, Massa learned about the environmental movement and ecology and decided that he needed to return to the farm. He was determined to grow organic and sustainable crops and restore the surrounding ecosystem. Massa and Raquel Krach say that Massa Organics was born

Goats roaming free at Massa Organics earn their keep by controlling weeds on the fully sustainable farm.

out of the need to stop spraying poison on their food. They started converting a small part of their land to organic rice production in Hamilton City near Stockton in 2001. Each year, they added a few more acres. They added a small almond orchard in 2004 and learned how to grow rice and almonds without the aid of any chemicals. “We view our farm as part of a functioning ecosystem, and we look at each crop in relation to how it will complement our farming system,” Massa says. “Everyone deserves safe, clean food to eat as well as a safe clean environment in which to work, play, grow and learn,” Krach adds. Massa Organics added ani-

mals into “natural” areas on the property. Goats, sheep and pigs roam the fields. With this integrated natural system, they have a fully sustainable farm that never needs pesticides or chemicals, or antibiotics and additives for the animals. The goats even keep the weeds down in the almond orchard. They decided that selling directly to customers was the best way to get their products to the public. They designed their own labels and packaging, set up tables at local farmers markets and sold to a local health food store. They have added the Concord Farmers Market to their weekly list. They also sell their products to restaurants and have their products added to a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) weekly produce box. The recent rains have flooded some of their plantings, but they accept that Mother Nature will determine their next move. Letting the earth do its thing naturally is what their farm is all about. Their products include organic rice, almonds and almond butter. Stop by and talk with them next Tuesday in Concord.

Euphorbia was new to us. Barbara thought its dark foliage would contrast well against the white-blooming candytuft already thriving in her garden. But after a couple months in the ground, the Euphorbia shriveled up and died. Barbara did what any garden-lover would do: She bought a couple more. She was determined to grow her vision. Again, the Euphorbia started to wilt and fail. Barbara dug up the plant and inspected the roots. They were drenched and smelly. The Euphorbia couldn’t tolerate the water that the rest of the flowerbed was receiving. Lesson learned. Tasmanian Tiger is an exceptional variety of Euphorbia with striking foliage. It has a stunning variegation of creamy white and green. Folks who have covered their landscapes with the dark-colored micro bark will appreciate the contrast this evergreen provides. Tasmanian Tiger can reach 12-16 inches tall and about 2 feet wide. As spring nears, its variegated heads curl toward the sky. Bracts of yellow flowers appear March through May. Euphorbia Helena’s Blush

euphorbia Tasmanian Tiger is in full bloom along the dry riverbed in the front of the Parkers’ Clayton home.

has an awesome variegation of cream, green and pink. In the late winter through spring, flower stalks with clusters of cream bracts with burgundy centers create a lovely display. This Euphorbia will grow 18 inches to 2 feet tall and wide. It can by used as a small shrub in a landscape layer. If you are installing a minimal amount of plants in an area, Helena’s Blush can stand alone and still make a statement. If you are considering companion plants, think about mixing

Letter to the Editor

DeSaulnier wrong to skip inauguration

Many Clayton residents were disappointed that Representative Mark DeSaulnier boycotted President Trump’s January 20 inauguration. Everyone understands the country is sharply divided in many ways. Political discourse is nastier than at any time in our memory. Nevertheless, for good or ill, Donald Trump was

Page 5

elected President in a constitutionally valid national election. Presidential inaugurations are not political events, but a time honored and cherished institution whereby political power is transferred from one citizen to another without the death or overthrow of the person losing power. George Washington set this precedent in 1797. It has occurred without fail every four years during times of peace, war, depression and turmoil. This peaceful

it with Carex testacea and Veronica Georgia Blue. Euphorbia Black Bird has dark, eggplant-colored foliage. The flower display features clusters of lime green bracts with burgundy centers. This selection of Euphorbia is very desirable. The U-shaped growth is 2 feet tall and wide. Black Bird is excellent in any full sun landscape. Use this evergreen as a layer to the taller Salvia Leucantha.

See Garden, page 7

transition of power historically separates the United States from every other republic. Many have fought and died to uphold this institution and what it stands. I wishfully hope the congressman and his colleagues will honorably accept the merits of this transfer and work with the new administration (in agreement or opposition) to the benefit of the entire nation. Jim Diaz, Mayor City of Clayton

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Page 6

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Q: My family has been informally looking for a home with room for my parents to have independent quarters. We haven’t really seen much that would work for us. We are now discussing adding an in-law suite to our current house, either with a guest house or an addition. Is this a good idea? We have some time because my folks are OK where they are for now. A: Demand for multi-generational housing is expanding as buyers are cutting back on expenses by living together. Building an addition or a separate cottage will add value to your property. An in-law suite can be the answer to many family’s prayers. It can be a designated area for extra adults to share living space on a temporary or permanent basis. These suites range from a bedroom with a full bathroom attached to a small apartment with a living room/kitchenette or even a full-size suite with a separate entrance.

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• Transportation to appointments and grocery shopping • Handyman services for routine home maintenance • Computer/smartphone help

Opening May 1, 2017 to serve seniors in Clayton & South Concord

We are now looking for Volunteers

who want to help Seniors in our community by driving them to the doctor, changing light bulbs, explaining what an “app” is. You do NOT have to be a Member to be a Volunteer!

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After being huddled down for such a long time due to the rainy season, we are moving into the season where we can enjoy the outdoors. Things like shopping, exercising, vacationing and sporting events will keep us focused on the enjoyable things in life. But in our excitement to become more active, we still need to be vigilant to secure our property. Please make sure that your homes and vehicles are secure when you are away. Keep valuables out of sight and do your best to deter individuals from



Begin by consulting with a custom homebuilder and selecting a floor plan. You can expand a bathroom, add a separate entrance, add closet space or even convert a garage into a full suite. The importance lies in the planning. Know what you want to do and always get an estimate to determine the specific costs. If you have elderly family members who require some care but are still very functional, adding an in-law suite may be the perfect way to preserve some of their independence while keeping an eye on them.

March 10, 2017

Q: I am cleaning and decluttering my home before I put it on the market. There are several items that I don’t feel I should just throw away. Where can I recycle things like electrical and construction waste? A: For appliances, you could donate to Goodwill, the Salvation Army or Habitat for Humanity for a tax-deduction. If you are buying new appliances, find out if the retailer will take old appliances away. There should be a state-run program called Cash for Appliances, with free pickup and/or cash for old appliances. The federal government has a program called Responsible Appliance Disposal (RAD). You can look these up on the internet. Meanwhile, large retailers such as Home Depot or Ikea often take used compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). The National Electrical Manufacturers Association runs a website at that contains a full list of retailers that accept light bulbs.

The U.S. government-sponsored Construction Waste Management Database website will direct you to recyclers within your zip code that will get rid of your wasted carpeting, ceiling tiles, flooring and more. If you have been working on a large home project, keep track of your waste materials and check the website so you can properly dispose of each item. ReStore, a project by Habitat for Humanity, accepts donated building materials and then resells them. ReStore sells to the general public at a fraction of the retail price, and proceeds help local Habitat affiliates fund the construction of Habitat homes within their communities. It’s a win-winwin for donors, consumers and communities.

department from an East Coast credit union, the check looked fairly legitimate. However, I knew I wasn’t entitled nor was I expecting such an item so I called the bank to confirm. The check was counterfeit, and I was told that there were several checks like this being sent throughout the nation. Theft of our identity and our banking information is becoming more prevalent. It is becoming easier to purchase items on the internet or open accounts based on unconfirmed information. Please take the time to do the research to make sure what you’re getting is what you are expecting. When in doubt, check it out. As you deter criminals from gaining access to

your personal property, use the same if not more vigilance to protect your identity. The theft of your identity can be a lot more damaging and take longer to correct. Meanwhile, the city of Clayton is looking into providing a camera system in the city to help identify and deter criminal behavior. Many cities have already incorporated this enhancement of quality of life and law enforcement with great success. We continue to look at ways to keep Clayton a wonder place to live and visit.

Enjoy the warmer weather, but keep safety in mind

approaching your property. As we are drying out, check around your residence to clear vegetation to allow line of sight and prevent hiding places for individuals to work on gaining access to your house. Examine all of your lighting to make sure it is operating properly. Timers and motion lights are good ways to deter criminal behavior. Inspect the locks on your windows and doors for proper operation and remember to secure them when you are away. Alarm systems can also be a good way to deter criminal behavior. We are still receiving scams through the internet and mail. Most recently, I received a check made out in my name for $1,925. Sent to the police

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ascends a small slope and dissects a wooded corridor Concord – Commercial Offices between two sections of houses. On one such recent walk, I Active business complex featuring JeNN ROe noticed a lone dog in the disa variety of commercial businesses. Well I N THE WILD tance. People sometimes walk maintained with friendly atmosphere. Extheir dogs off-leash, so I expectI often walk a trail that bor- ed to see a neighbor appear to cellent location including ample parking. ders open space near my Clayton join his pet. Instead, the dog was home. It starts at a cul-de-sac, joined by another canine, and I Contact Maureen realized I was looking at two coyotes. We stared at one another for a while, until the pair casually trotted off into a nearby stand of blue oaks. Try as I might, I couldn’t make out their shapes among the trees and shrubs. They had vanished. Coyotes live among us Call today to reserve your appointment. • Extended Hours because of nearby Mt. Diablo We accept most Insurance plans State Park, a wildlife sanctuary. • Modern Technology But the coyotes’ range is so • Internet Bar & TVs 925.219.3939 widespread today that they live • Beverage Center in every state except Hawaii and 6200 Center St. Suite I & J, Clayton • Neck Pillows & Blankets in major cities in every state, including San Francisco, • Warm Scented Towels go and New York. Coyotes have withstood more than 200 years of man’s $ robust and often gruesome attempts to exterminate them. Contrary to plan, this triggered more and bigger litters. Coyotes flowed eastward from their indigenous western domain, colAfter Exam, X-Rays & Cleaning onizing throughout North $369 Value $99 Value America. And they thrived. For new patients only. The coyote is a mediumFor new patients only. Cannot be combined with other offers. Cannot be combined with other offers. sized canine, from 15 to 50 Valid in absence of gum disease. Expires 4/16/2017. Expires 4/16/2017. pounds. It can and will eat

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Clayton Fair Properties


Send your question and look for your answer in a future column. Email French is the broker/owner of Windermere Lynne French & Associates. Contact her at 672-8787 or stop in at 6200 Center St., Clayton.


Exam, X-Rays & Cleaning

Dirk Muehlne

Coyotes are members of the canine family and can be mistaken for a stray dog.

watched in horror from her kitchen window, a coyote snatched the little kitty from the fenced backyard. My neighbor was outside in a flash, but too late. A six-foot fence is no obstacle for a coyote. Coyotes come into our neighborhoods specifically to look for food. They hunt the rats, mice and other prey our homes attract. Birdfeeders draw in rodents, as does pet food left outside overnight. And rodents lure coyotes. In times of drought, they follow the critters drinking from our irrigation systems, ponds and pools. A friend watched coyotes eat persimmons right off a tree. They eat a variety of berries in the wild, so why not from our cultivated gardens? Even compost can be a coyote snack. Their diet is so varied that almost any habitat offers nourishment. Coyotes are in our neighborhood, and we are in theirs. We coexist because we must – and can – adapt. If you’re interested in learning more about how to live with coyotes, visit the website

almost anything. It has the jaws and teeth of a carnivore and molars for chewing fruits and veggies. It usually preys on small mammals like gophers, ground squirrels, moles and voles – making them great at pest control. Reptiles and insects are also on the menu. Carrion, the flesh of already dead animals, makes a welcome meal. Unfortunately, so do cats and small dogs left outside and unattended, especially at night. Coyotes are opportunistic eaters. My neighbor adopted a feral kitten that refused to stay Roe is a volunteer docent with indoors, in spite of the owner’s the Mt. Diablo Interpretive Associbest efforts. It survived about ation. Email her at two months. While my neighbor

March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Creekside Arts

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 b Ev b riTTOn , Copy Editor J Ay b EdECArré, Sports PAMElA W iESEndAngEr , Administration, Calendar Editor S TAFF W RITERS : Peggy Spear, Pamela Wiesendanger, Jay Bedecarré, Bev Britton

C ORRESPONDENTS : Kara Navolio, John T. Miller, Jennifer Leischer

We remember Jill Bedecarré


Tel: (925) 672-0500 Fax: (925) 672-6580

Tamara Steiner Send ads to Send Sports News to Send Club News to Send School News to 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 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 Both Pioneer newspapers welcome letters from our readers. As a general rule, letters should be 175 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. CIRCULATION

Total circulation of the Clayton Pioneer is 5,500 to ZIP code 94517, all delivered by US Mail to homes and businesses. We cannot start or stop free delivery to individual addresses. This must be done directly through the Post Office. The Concord Pioneer is delivered monthly to 30,500 in Concord by carrier. Papers are delivered once a month on a Friday morning near the end of the month. To stop delivery for any reason, call the office at (925) 672-0500 or send an email to 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.

SUBSCRIPTIONS To subscribe, call the office at (925) 672-0500. Subscriptions are $35/year for each paper, $60/year for both.

Mayor, from page 1

medicinal, commercial or recreational purposes. For medicinal use, the council permitted cannabis deliveries to the residences of those who have physician-approved prescriptions. The deliveries can only be from an authorized marijuana dispensary located outside of Clayton. For Concord BART commuters: As part of the plaza improvements at the Concord station, BART must temporarily close some fee parking spaces and relocate some permit spaces in two phases. BART will post signs 72 hours in advance of removing/relocating spaces. Phase I, now to October, will close off about 115 spaces in the fee lot north of the station, near Park and Grant streets. This will require the relocation of the carpool permit spaces. Follow the signs for the new carpool permit spaces, which will be south of the station in the lot nearest

Oakland Street. This will be the new permanent carpool parking location. Phase II, November 2017 to February 2018, will relocate about 57 permit (reserved) spaces from the current lot, between Prospect and Atlantic streets, to a nearby fee lot between Prospect and Laguna streets. There will be no loss of permit spaces. The relocated spaces will remain permit parking after construction, which will add 50+ new permit spaces. BART notes that the plaza improvements will result in better lighting, easier access to the BART station and improved overall appearance. And finally, Clayton Cleans Up will be 9 a.m.-noon Saturday, April 22. Please meet at the City Hall courtyard.

Friday, March 24

Page 7

Directory of Advertisers Area code 925 unless otherwise indicated

Opening Reception, 6-8:30 p.m. Annie & Friends, dog and pony show, 6:30-7 p.m. Life on Main Street, Clayton Historical Society, 7-7:20 p.m. About Face, military self-portraits, 7:20-7:30 p.m. Juried Art Awards, 7:30-8 p.m.

business Services

Arts and Crafts Sales/Eco Groups, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Outdoor Plein Air Workshop, Steve Perry, 10 a.m.-noon. Golden Paints Demo, Tesia Blackburn, with free samples, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Storytelling and Crafts, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Portrait Drawing Workshop, Seema Mahboob, 1-3 p.m. Life on Main Stream, “Doc” Hale, 2-3:30 p.m. Nature and Craft Journaling, Patrice Hanlon, 3:30-4:30 p.m.

Appliance Repairs by Bruce, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . 672-2700

Saturday, March 25

Sunday, March 26

Arts and Crafts Sales/Eco Groups, noon-5 p.m. Open Mic, noon-2 p.m. Storytelling and crafts, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Ukulele Jam and Hula, with audience participation, 2 p.m. Diablo Taiko, with audience participation, 2:30 p.m. People’s Choice Awards, 4 p.m.

Creekside, from page 1

Oakley. She rides a miniature horse,” says Faith Taylor of Snowfire Ranch. Taylor, who lives on the south side of Morgan Territory, is hoping that there will be a safe route for her to get into town by then. “It’s a cute show. People love it, especially the kids,” she says. Dick Ellis of the Clayton Historical Society is up next Friday night, followed by a short presentation on About Face by Roger Renn. The program for veterans provides a sometimes very emotional outlet for them to paint their selfportraits after serving in wartorn areas. The evening closes with the announcement of the art winners, juried by Bedford Gallery, Art Concepts and the county Arts & Culture Commission. Saturday’s full schedule includes crafts and storytelling for kids, outdoor painting, a portrait drawing workshop, and nature and craft journaling. At 2 p.m., renowned wildlife biologist Jim “Doc” Hale hosts “Life on Main Stream,” a slide show and outdoor tour. “I will give a presentation on the prehistoric, historic and

present conditions along Mt. Diablo Creek and Mitchell Creek,” Hale says. Hale will lead visitors on “an easy saunter” along the creek near the library. “On the interpretive walk, I will discuss the wildlife and the plants – not only just identifying plants, but noting which are edible, medicinal and useful plants used by the Native Americans,” Hale says. The event continues Sunday with an Open Mic at noon for music, poetry and dance, followed by the always popular ukulele jam, hula and Taiko drumming with audience participation. The weekend concludes with the announcement of the People’s Choice Award winners at 4 p.m. Held in conjunction with the library’s anniversary, the event is supported by the Creekside Artist Guild, the Clayton Community Library Foundation and the city of Clayton. Deadline to participate is March 13. Forms can be obtained online at or at the library. For more info, contact event director Arlene KikkawaNielsen at or 925-864-3805.

Garden, from page 5

Not all Euphorbia are shrub-like. Euphorbia Rigida is a ground cover selection. Because of its leaf shape, this Euphorbia is often confused with a succulent. Gray, triangular leaves line sturdy, tube-like stems. When in bloom, green bracts and green flowers contrast Rigida’s gray foliage. Euphorbia Rigida looks great in a rock garden, but give this evergreen some space. It Send comments to the mayor at will set seed and spread

throughout a landscape. Another great attribute of all Euphorbia is that they are deer and gopher resistant. Their milky sap is toxic, so critters leave the plants alone. If you have plant allergies, you may want to steer clear of this selection. Nicole is the Garden Girl at R&M Pool, Patio, Gifts and Garden. You can contact her with questions or comments by email at

Rising Moon Marketing & Public Relations . . . 672-8717 Construction and Trades

Belfast Plumbing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 457-5423 Diablo View Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 822-5144

Gary’s Home Repair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 787-2500 J.A. Ronco Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 872-3049

Mr. Fix-it Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 825-0347 Tipperary Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 216-2679 dining and Entertainment

Clayton Club Saloon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 673-0440

Oakhurst Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-9737 Events

Bras for the Cause . . . . . . . . . . . Financial, insurance and legal Services

Van Wyck, Doug – State Farm Insurance . . . . 672-2300 Funerals

Oakmont Mortuary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 935-3311

Ouimet Funeral Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 682-4242 Health and Wellness The Grove Family Dentistry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 219-3939 Home and garden

Clayton Furniture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 686-2299 Diablo Lawnscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 381-3757

Interiors Panache . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-7920

Nichols Landscape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-9955

Skim ‘n’ Dip – Pool Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 348-5609

Waraner Bros. Tree Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 831-2323 Waraner Tree Experts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 250-0334 Mailing Services

The UPS Store . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 689-6245 real Estate and Mortgage Services

Bennett, Nancy – Keller Williams . . . . . . . . . . 606-8400

Clayton Fair Properties . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 685-0324 French, Lynne – Windermere Real Estate . . . . 672-8787

Hayes, Diane – Better Homes Realty . . . . . . . 890-4701 Klock, Leigh – Coldwell Banker . . . . . . . . . . . . 212-5593 Lopez, Stephanie – Coldwell Banker . . . . . . . . 305-9099

Mazzei, Matt – Mazzei Realty . . . . . . . . . . . . . 693-0757 Stojanovich, Jennifer – Better Homes Realty . 567-6170 Vujnovich, George - Better Homes Realty . . . . 672-4433 recreation and Fitness

Camp Concord . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 671-2267 Services, Other

ComputersUSA! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-9989 Net Solutions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-6029

925-250-0334 FREE ESTIMATES

Owners Dustin & Kim Waraner

Contractors Lic #879423 Arborist Lic WE-7372A

Recycling Center & Transfer Station . . . . . . . . 682-4518 Travel

Travel to Go . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 672-9840


Do the Right Thing


Page 8

Clayton Pioneer •

March 10, 2017

Clubs at the core of CVCHS community

At Clayton Valley, a large portion of the student body has historically been involved in one or more clubs. Club relations commissioner Mohana Hatami organizes and runs all of the club days on campus and communicates

with clubs about activities and fundraisers. “Clubs are a great opportunity for students to engage in fun activities and extracurriculars of their interest apart from schoolwork,” Hatami says. The following is a look at just a portion of the clubs at CVCHS. For more information, go to the ASB page at Black Student Union: The club informs the student body during Black History Month and promote black culture. California Scholarship Federation: The academic club plans and participates in many

service projects. CSF has more than 500 chapters throughout California. Hands for Humanity: The club “encourages students to be community-oriented and to give back to our community during and after high school,” says leader Nhu Nguyen. “The members in our club spend many hours in our week volunteering and conducting service projects to help the less fortunate, charities and the elderly.” Health Occupations Students of America: “The medical club on campus is an outlet for many students to showcase their unique talents through

Students from all grades contributed to the 13th annual talent show hosted by the Diablo View Middle School Leadership Class last month. The event included performances by the Diablo View Jazz Band, the Leadership class and Diablo View’s new 8th grade science teacher, Shay Kornfeld. Earlier this year, Kornfeld taught a science unit on sound waves. He assigned an extra credit assignment to create a cover of a popular song, making it about something the stu-

dents had learned in science class. Kornfeld made his own cover of “Heathens” by Twenty One Pilots, and called it “Sound Waves.” The song described how sound waves worked, and he included many vocabulary words from the unit. Kornfeld said that making a parody of the song makes “teaching the subject more fun and more alive. … When you make learning more fun, everyone benefits.” He promised his students that he would perform the

song in the talent show if other students would accompany him, so students played the piano, electric bass, drums and xylophone. “It is always more fun with others,” he says. “When you all come together on a piece, it brings it to another level.” Every year, the Leadership class picks a charity to donate the proceeds from the talent show. This year, the school gave more than $900 to the Save the Children Foundation, a charity that provides healthy nutrition, education and pro-



Science teacher brings unique cover song to talent show



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break the chain of – abuse toward women. Carondelet is one of those sites. Since 2013, Carondelet has hosted a celebration that includes students and faculty dancing in the amphitheater at lunch. “It’s a day of empowerment and it calls for the abuse to stop,” says Carondelet activities director Sarah

Daniel. “It’s not just a dance, it’s about rising up in a nonviolent way to educate those around us.” For the first time, Carondelet became a host site this year for a community event surrounding the One Billion Rising activities. On Feb. 13, the school hosted an evening gathering open to the public that featured guest speakers, representatives from organizations dedicated to helping women in violent situations, lots of student volunteers and a dance instructor teaching the Break the Chain dance. The theme was RISE: respect, inclusion, solidarity and empowerment. My favorite part was a powerful speech and poem by Carondelet alum Emari Dimagiba (Class of ’90) on her experience with sexual assault. After Dimagiba spoke,

Concord Mayor Laura Hoffmeister gave a short speech about the importance of female empowerment. She also honored Carondelet with a proclamation on behalf of the City Council, recognizing Feb. 13 as Violence Against Women Prevention Day in Concord. Overall, it was a huge success. I am proud to attend a school that focuses so largely on women’s issues. “It’s not just a women’s problem,” Daniel notes. “It’s everyone’s problem.” For more information, visit

McFarland is a senior at Carondelet High School and a member of the cross country team. Send comments and questions to

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CVCHS. “It encourages the development of school spirit and provides training for responsibilities both in the classroom and extracurricular activities,” says president Andrey Pristinsky. Senior Women: The group promotes honesty, loyalty, courtesy and leadership. A member of Senior Women encourages school spirit and is a leader in the classroom as well as in extracurricular activities and community. Senior Women are the official hostesses of CVCHS and participate in numerous activities to benefit the school and the community. Sydney Skow is a sophomore at CVCHS. Email her at

CVCHS focuses on incoming freshman class

Natalie Pursche is an eighthgrader at DVMS and a regular contributor to the Pioneer. Send comments to

Carondelet rises up against violence

On Feb. 13 and 14, Carondelet High School participated in the annual One Billion Rising event, a worldwide day of awareness calling people to stand up against violence against women. Beginning on Valentine’s Day 2012, the movement calls attention to the shocking statistic that 1 in 3 women will be raped or beaten in her lifetime. This adds up to more than one billion women and girls worldwide, hence the name of the movement. According to its website, One Billion Rising is “the largest mass action to end violence against women in human history.” One of the signature aspects of the movement is the “Break the Chain” dance. Large groups gather at various sites across the globe, dancing to raise awareness about – and

the community, fundraises for charities and helps members develop leadership skills. “Some people might think we’re just a community service club, but everyone who is a part of it is so spirited and loving it becomes a second family for a lot of our members,” says club president Jessica Holland. Legal Eagles: The debate and mock trial team competes in the Contra Costa Mock Trial tournament. Multicultural Club: The group spreads cultural awareness to the student body and is currently gearing up for the multicultural rally they put on annually. Senior Men: The scholarship and service club members are the official hosts of


This is an exciting time of the year at Clayton Valley Charter High School. On Feb. 25, we welcomed more than 1,500 students and family members for Incoming 9th Grade Registration Day. I was pleased to meet so many grateful parents and eager students who will be become new members of the Ugly Eagles family next fall. The large gym was filled with counselors and teaching staff who provided the students with information about everything needed for a successful transition: course selection, extracurricular programs, athletic teams, music, arts and our acclaimed Academies. A presentation by Principal John McMorris and Sarah Lovick of the Freshman Transition Program left the students excited. Leading up to registration day, CVCHS received another record number of student applications during the threemonth open enrollment period. It’s amazing to witness the commitment of parents who want the best for their children and the great lengths they will travel for a world-class education right here in Concord. It’s also the reason why the ardent spirit of CVCHS continues to prosper. Our community is galvanized by a common vision – one embraced by staff,

parents and students alike. We transformed our school culture to reflect a framework of rigor, relevance and relationships. This philosophy, coupled with innovative teaching and staff support, is why the school’s academic achievements continue to be ranked among the highest in the state. I’m committed to making sure incoming students are provided with a comprehensive introduction to their educational experience and are prepared for the transition process. Incoming freshmen are the largest at-risk population in high school. Consider these national statistics: • More students struggle in 9th grade than any other grade, because transition to a larger high school can be challenging for some. • Most of the students who end up dropping out of high school fail at least 25 percent of their ninth-grade courses. Eight percent of high school graduates experienced the same difficulty. • Low attendance during the first 30 days of 9th grade is a strong indicator that a student will drop out. At CVHCS, we offer a unique Freshmen Transition Program – thanks to Lovick, the Link Crew leaders and school counselors. To help incoming students, we address the fundamental needs so each student succeeds socially and academically. CVCHS places a high priority on incoming students to ensure that every child lives in a world where they feel safe, loved and celebrated in a positive learning environment.

David Linzey is executive director of CVCHS. Contact him

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medical-based competitions, discover new interests through health professional guest speakers and become a part of an international community of students who share the same interests in the medical field,” says leader Megan Brys. HOSA is currently preparing for the state Leadership Conference. Interact Club: Sponsored by Rotary clubs, Interact members participate in service projects. “Interact also works internationally to create overseas relationships and help the disadvantaged worldwide,” says leader Natalie Ruzicka. Key Club: The club serves

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March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Science fairs showcase student ingenuity

The season of science fairs is one of my favorite times of the school year. I never cease to be amazed at the creativity and range of ideas the students put into their experiments and projects. I have learned the best way to clean dirty pennies, how soil type can affect plant growth, whether rusting can take place

in the absence of air and whether poems with lots of rhythm and rhyme are easier to learn than those written in free verse. Science fairs are a guaranteed way to feel better about our future, knowing that these smart and curious young people will be leading the way – powered by inquiry and imagination. Over time, I have come to observe some key outcomes of science fairs: • They are great for helping develop confidence and competence while promoting a spirit of scientific inquiry.

• They integrate an enormous range of skills and academic areas, including reading, writing, critical thinking, data analysis, computer science, arts, scientific methodology and public speaking. • They provide great handson experiences – a critical component of learning science – that are both challenging and self-validating.

Concord’s Wood Rose Academy is the first U.S. member of the Arenales Foundation, headquartered in Madrid, Spain. Wood Rose, an independent, Catholic preschool-8th grade school, is one of 12 network schools in four countries. The Arenales education model focuses on a personalized education, requiring student, teacher and parent involvement. The model is aimed at developing the whole child: academic life, social life

and spiritual life. In September, Wood Rose incorporated programs from the Arenales model into its classical curriculum. The first program is student mentoring, which requires each student to meet regularly with a teachermentor to set goals. The second program is a combination of parenting workshops and parent-teacher mentor meetings, which help track student progress. The third program is a variety of after-school classes that provide extracurricular

opportunities so students may pursue a personal interest – including Spanish classes. In addition, there is an international student exchange program where students may opt to spend two to 10 weeks in a sister school in Spain. The Concord academy will begin hosting exchange students from Spain this spring. Two student teachers from Spain are currently on a five-week observation visit to Concord to meet their student teaching requirements.




ematics) Fair will be 9-11 a.m. Saturday, March 11, at the Willow Creek Center in Concord. It’s open to the public, and I encourage you to attend and be amazed. Learn more at Los Medanos Community College will also host a Science Fair 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Friday, March 17. All are welcome to attend as they judge county Schools are holding indi- submissions. vidual science fairs now; conDr. Nellie Meyer is Superintendent tact your neighborhood school of Schools for MDUSD. Email to get dates and times. The questions or comments to annual STEM (Science, nology, Engineering and Math-

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petition then goes to the Board of Supervisors, which will function as the County Committee on District Reorganization. They have 60 days to make recommendations on how the proposal satisfies the nine criteria required by the state to create a new district, at which time they will hold a public hearing. Next, the petition passes to the state Department of Education. If they approve, the proposal could come before local voters. “The procedure may take years,” said Koehne. “It’s obvious the (NCAPS) group has done a lot of work to get this far.” Jim Mills, a founding board member and spokesman for NCAPS, says the group is prepared. “We’ve done due diligence and are confident the proposal will pass the state’s criteria.” OPPOSING VIEWPOINTS The issue has divided the community, with opposition coming from teachers, administration and other stakeholders. Meg Honey, who teaches Advanced Placement U.S. History at Northgate, is wary of the proposal. She is an alumna of the feeder pattern, and both her children will attend the Northgate schools. “People are holding on to past hurts and events that are no longer relevant in the current district,” Honey says. “In the last few years, the district has made huge investments in innovation and completely restructured the district office.

We are no longer losing teachers to surrounding districts, but instead have become a destination district with improved salaries and benefits.” The NCAPS website says “the campaign attracted criticism from a small group of educators.” However, Honey notes that a survey of teachers at Northgate revealed that 96 percent said they were against the secession movement and 98 percent indicated they would stay with MDUSD. “We are not confident to leave the current district and go into an unknown venture,” Honey says. Mills believes the teachers don’t need to worry. “The formation of a new district may be many years away,” he notes. “The teachers do not need to make a decision yet.” In an open letter to the community, Northgate Principal Michael McAlister alluded to Northgate being named a U.S. News and World Report Silver School in 2016. “Northgate is working well. So too is the MDUSD,” McAlister says. “Those who disagree should visit the school and see for themselves.” BUDGETARY CONCERNS Guy Moore, president of the Mt. Diablo Education Association (MDEA), wonders how the proposal would affect teacher salaries. “Northgate CAPS will be at a disadvantage because they won’t be able to match our salaries and benefits,” he says. When Clayton Valley High School became a charter, school officials said salaries

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New faculty and staff from Spain will help guide the school’s long-term vision. Future priorities include bilingual education for all grades beginning in August, remodeling of facilities, technology enhancements and classroom expansion to allow for more students. Plans for a high school also have begun. For more information, visit or call 925-825-4644. Find out more about the Arenales Foundation at

Statutory Criteria on School District Reorganization

1. The reorganized districts will be adequate in terms of number of pupils enrolled. 2. The districts are each organized on the basis of a substantial community identity. 3. The proposal will result in an equitable division of property and facilities of the original district or districts. 4. The reorganization of the districts will preserve each affected district’s ability to educate students in an integrated environment and will not promote racial or ethnic discrimination or segregation. 5. Any increase in costs to the state as a result of the proposed reorganization will be insignificant and otherwise incidental to the reorganization. 6. The proposed reorganization will continue to promote sound education performance and will not significantly disrupt the educational programs in the districts affected by the proposed reorganization. 7. Any increase in school facilities costs as a result of the proposed reorganization will be insignificant and otherwise incidental to the reorganization. 8. The proposed reorganization is primarily designed for purposes other than to significantly increase property values. 9. The proposed reorganization will continue to promote sound fiscal management and not cause a substantial negative effect on the fiscal status of the proposed district or any existing district affected by the proposed reorganization. and benefits would be equal or better than those provided by MDEA. However, Moore says their benefits are inferior. Of the 80 teachers who chose to stay with the charter, only 20 remain today. Mills states that many smaller local districts, like Acalanes Unified and Walnut Creek schools, continue to offer quality programs. However, in addition to increased parcel taxes, education foundations raise at least $1 million a year in those districts. “Many affluent district superintendents complain that the basic level of funding will require them to constantly pass parcel taxes and bond issues,”

Moore says. “And even with those, they will not be able to remain fiscally solvent and will need to make cuts.” Special education funding could be another hurdle to the move. According to a memo from the MDUSD Special Education Department, it would cost the proposed NUSD about $3.164 million to maintain current programs and teacher and assistant staffing ratios at Northgate schools. However, Mills says that as with other smaller districts in Contra Costa, the county office would be responsible for taking care of the special needs population.

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Clayton Pioneer •

March 10, 2017

‘Port Chicago’ saga finds extended run in Berkeley Performing Arts

kindness while we were there,” says co-producer Ron Johnson. The Black Repertory Group is at the Birel L. Vaughn Theater, 3201 Adeline St., Berkeley. Tickets can be purchased through m. For more information, call 510-652-2120.



Pittsburg had it first. But thanks to the performances at Pittsburg’s California Theater, the “Port Chicago 50” has been booked at the Berkeley Black Repertory Group March 17-19. The true story of the African American soldiers who loaded ammunition and other explosives unto ships at Port Chicago and the terrible explosion that cost 320 seamen their lives was wellreceived in Pittsburg and should enjoy the same warm reception in Berkeley. “We really want to thank the city of Pittsburg for its

If you loved Clayton Theatre Company’s (CTC) production of “Rumors” last season, then you’ll love this season’s opener starring many of the same performers. “We were so impressed with our cast from ‘Rumors’ that we wanted to find another comedy to feature them and their extraordinary talents for our CTC audience,” says managing director Roxanne Pardi. They certainly found a good one with “Moon Over Buffalo.” LaTonya Watts directs Ken Ludwig’s fastpaced farce about a former Broadway couple performing in a small theater in Buffalo.

Snow White, played by Krista Joy Serpa, wishes for a “splendid ‘he’ on bended knee” in “That’s Our Snow White!” by east Bay Children’s Theatre.

Film director Frank Capra’s attendance at one of the performances to consider them for his upcoming film creates havoc, made even more so when the wife discovers her husband’s affair with another actress. Add in a crazy mother-in-law, mistaken identities and more and you have mayhem for the actors and pure enjoyment for the audience. Bringing the zany characters to life are Chip Renner, Teresa Grosserode, Peggy Scalise, Tamara Filener, Bill Dietz, Nathalie Archangel, James Bradley Jr. and Ron Craven. The show runs through March 25 at Endeavor Hall, 6008 Center St., in Clayton. Call 925-222-9106, go to or If you can’t resist a good apple, be sure to catch “That’s Our Snow White!” by the East Bay Children’s Theatre. The original musical spoof features Snow White, a high-maintenance princess with a heart of gold, the “six” dwarfs, the Evil Queen and her back-talking Magic Mirror and lots of furry friends. Playwright and composer Ron Lytle created the popular family musical in 2008 and has revamped the production to be “even bigger, even better and even brassier.” Fun songs include “I’ll Whistle; You Work!” and “How Do You Like Them Apples?” Will Snow White thwart the evil plot of her wicked stepmother? Will she ever find her prince? Will she be able to hit her high notes? The tongue-in-cheek script and Broadway flavored songs will enchant children and have adults rolling in the aisles. In addition to performing at a variety of East Bay schools, the show has public performances on March 19 at the Orinda Library Auditorium, 26 Orinda Way, and March 26 at the California Theatre, 351 Railroad Ave., Pittsburg. Tickets may be purchased at Advance purchase is strongly recommended.

Mike Kirwan

Peggy Scalise, Teresa Grosserode and Chip Renner star in Clayton Theatre Company’s “Moon Over Buffalo” through March 25 at endeavor Hall in Clayton

Lafayette’s Town Hall Theatre just opened one of my favorite shows, “Smokey Joe’s Cafe.” Running through March 25, the rock and roll revue features “Poison Ivy,” “Stand By Me” and many more. Director Lauren Rosi, who is also doing the choreography, says one of the biggest challenges is not having a real script. “It forces us to really unleash our creativity,” she says. “Luckily, I have so much talent to work with – really creative, intelligent performers.” Rosi says there is a lot of female energy at Town Hall right now, with new artistic director Susan Evans, community relations manager Suzie Shepard and Rosi directing. She notes, however, that company manager Dennis Markam is “managing to hold his own.” For tickets, call 925 2531557 or go to Young performers age 1322 can audition for Stars 2000’s production of “Beauty and the Beast” on March 19 and 20. Casting for the role of Chip (age 7 and up) will take place March 21. The

‘Matsumoto’ a timely American drama Center REPertory Company will present “Sisters Matsumoto,” the story of three sisters returning home to their family farm in Stockton after two years in an internment camp in Arkansas. Set in 1945, “Sisters Matsumoto” tells of their efforts to rebuild their lives as Ameri-

cans and their struggles to balance the hard truths of the past with the needs of the future. “We’re so honored to present this moving, incisive and heartwarming play about an important moment of American history,” says artistic director Michael Butler.

According to playwright Philip Kan Gotanda, the play mirrors the history of his mother’s life. Gotanda is a widely produced playwright and respected independent filmmaker. He has received numerous honors, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, four Rockefeller Playwrighting

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Awards and three awards from the National Endowment for the Arts. He is a Bay Area native and lives in San Francisco. Directed by Mina Morita, the play runs March 31-April 29 at the Lesher Center for the Arts in Walnut Creek. Morita is the artistic director of Crowded Fire Theatre in San Francisco and has directed at Shotgun Players, Aurora Theatre, UC Berkeley and many other Bay Area theaters. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the executive order that sent 120,000 American citizens of Japanese descent to internment camps around the country. “Every once in a while a play comes along that provides a context for exploring an issue; ‘Sisters Matsumoto’ is such a play,” Butler notes. “Many of us are thinking deeply about the very nature of the word ‘American.’ We have questions, hopes, fears and dreams. We are adding special post-show discussions with the director, playwright and cast members, and we encourage you to attend those performances if you can.”

Center REPertory Company is at 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. For more information, go to or call 925-943-SHOW.

show performs July 21-Aug. 6. For more information, go to To schedule an audition, send an email to Diane Kamrin at

Sally Hogarty is well known around the Bay Area as a newspaper columnist, theatre critic and working actress. She is also the editor of the Orinda News. Email

‘Bookseller’ teeters on edge of reality



“The Bookseller” is Cynthia Swanson’s debut novel, and with it comes all the glitches often found in a debut novel. Some characters are not particularly likeable, and some topics seem a bit ahead of the story’s time. Swanson’s bookseller is a single woman in her late 30s in 1962, quite a bit older than the typical budding young feminist. But all that aside, I found myself giving up a great deal of the day to finish what I had started reading the previous night. The protagonist is Kitty Miller, a grammar school teacher who has given up teaching to open a bookstore with her long-time best friend, Frieda Green. My guess is that the book’s title was chosen by the publisher, not the author. Other than the fact Kitty owns and works in a bookstore, there is little in this complex tale that hinges on bookselling. The story begins: “This is not my bedroom. Where am I? Gasping and pulling unfamiliar bedcovers up to my chin, I strain to collect my senses. But no explanation for my whereabouts comes to mind.” Kitty, who has come to terms with her independent and somewhat eccentric single life, is in for a shock when she awakens in the bedroom of a strange man who greets her warmly as his beloved wife. Kitty assumes she is dreaming, and to the author’s credit, the reader does, too. I found it perplexing that this “dream life” is only a few months ahead of her real life as a shopkeeper. Kitty the

bookseller, or Kathryn as she is known to her dream family, moves between these two states of being. “The Bookseller” is not quite a story of two separate lives experienced by one person. The facts contained in one life overlap and eventually spill into the other. Kathryn’s perfect dream life with Lars is complicated by the discovery that she is the mother of triplets, one of whom is diagnosed as autistic – a condition only just becoming better known. Her “real” life as a bookseller is increasingly more complex. Old-town Denver becomes drained of its business vitality with the boom of suburbia and its shopping malls. Kitty and Frieda find themselves coping with what to do with their failing bookstore. Kitty’s dreaming escapes to her married life seem a perfect anecdote for her no longer perfect single life. Eventually, both Kitty’s lives, real and imagined, prove to be not at all what she expected from either. The reader begins to wonder, at about the same time as Kitty, which life is the dream and which the reality. How far will the human mind travel to cope with life at its most stressful? No spoiler here, but the power of our minds to find solutions to what seems unbearable is beautifully captured in “The Bookseller.” 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.’

March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 11

Clayton Community Calendar

PlEASE SubMiT yOur COMMuniTy CAlEndAr EvEnTS by 5 P.M. APr. 5 FOr THE APr. 14 iSSuE. iTEMS MuST bE SubMiTTEd by EMAil TO


Thru Mar. 25 “Moon Over Buffalo”

Hilarious comedy with madcap misadventures presented by the Clayton Theatre Company. 7:30 p.m. Endeavor Hall, 6008 Center St. $15-$25. (925) 222-9106.

Mar. 24 - 26 Creekside Arts

Arts, entertainment, environmental education. This year’s theme, “Life on Main Street.” Fri. 6 – 8 p.m. Sat. 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sun. 12 – 5 p.m. Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. Free admission.

Mar. 25 Pancakes and Ponies

Enjoy breakfast, horses and Mount Diablo. Benefits horsemanship education programs. 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Concord Mt. Diablo Trail Ride Association Clubhouse, 1600 Trail Ride Road, Clayton. $8 and up.


On Sale Now Concord Pavilion Concerts

The Concord Pavilion is located at 2000 Kirker Pass Road. Concert schedule for 2017: Apr. 16, Snoop Dogg, 7:30 p.m. Jun. 2, Kidz Bop Tour, 7 p.m. Jun. 7, Chicago and The Doobie Brothers, 7:30 p.m. Jun. 11, Spirit West Coast Concord, 3 p.m. Jun. 23, United We Rock Tour, 7 p.m. Jul. 6, Deftones and Rise Against, 6:30 p.m. Aug. 11, Steve Martin and Martin Short, 8 p.m. Aug. 16, Double Feature: Straight No Chaser/Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox, 7:30 p.m. Aug. 27, 2017 Honda Civic Tour featuring OneRepublic, 7 p.m.

Mar. 16 Annual Meeting

Concord Historical Society holds its annual meeting with presentations on Mount Diablo in 1760 and Concord Then and Now. 6 p.m. Oakhurst Country Club, 1001 Peacock Creek Dr., Clayton. $45 by March 10. Open to the public. Contact Louise Turrin at (925) 685-2497.


Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve programs are available for registration through Parking fees may apply. For additional information, contact Black Diamond Visitor Center at (510) 544-2750 or

Thru November Hazel-Atlas Mine Tours

Learn about the mining history and geology at Black Diamond Mines. Guided, 90-minute tour; Saturdays and Sundays. Must be age 7 or older with parent. $5 in advance online or day of at Sidney Flat Visitor Center.

Mar. 11 Miners and Mining Tools

Discover historic mine openings. 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Meet at Black Diamond Mines.

Mar. 11, 18, 19, 25, 26 and Apr. 9, 15 Vasco Caves

Naturalist-guided tour. Ages 10 and up. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. $30; reservations required. Meet at Round Valley Regional Preserve.

Mar. 12 Wildflower Hike

Stroll through oaks and chaparral in search of early season blooms. 1 – 3 p.m. Meet at Black Diamond Mines uppermost parking lot.

Mount Diablo Interpretive Association programs listed are free with the exception of park entrance fee. Go to and click on Event Calendar for more information.

Mar. 26 A Jeweled Island in Suburbia

Drop in to learn about the animals and plants on Mount Diablo. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Summit Museum.

Mar. 29 Frog Pond

Hike to secluded Frog Pond then to Green Ranch before returning. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Meet at Curry Point Trailhead.

Mar. 31 Moses Rock Ridge

Explore some of the wild northwestern slopes of the mountain. 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Meet at Diablo Ranch Trailhead.

Apr. 2 Round the Mountain

Views in all directions. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Meet at Juniper Trailhead.

Apr. 7 Back Canyon and Diablo Falls Hike

Ideal time to see wildflowers and water on the rugged north side of Mount Diablo. 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Meet at Mitchell Canyon Trailhead.

Save Mount Diablo’s Discover Diablo is a free public hike series. Go to for more information.

Mar. 11 Family Walk

Curry Point to Frog Pond. 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. Meet at Curry Point Parking Lot. Reservations required.


Thru Mar. 12 “Jack and the Beanstalk”

Presented by Fantasy Forum Actors Ensemble. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $14. (925) 943-7469.

Thru Apr. 23 “John”

A visceral ghost story with a millennial twist. A.C.T.’s Strand Theater, 1127 Market St., San Francisco. $20-$105. (415) 749-2228.

Mar. 11 Comedy

Performed by Scott Capurro. 8 p.m. California Theatre, 351 Railroad Ave., Pittsburg. $18-$21. (925) 427-1611.

Mar. 11 Concert

Mar. 31 – Apr. 30 “Grease”

Mar. 12 “Hello Gorgeous! A Live Tribute to Barbra Streisand”

Apr. 1 – 2 Concert

Performed by United States Air Force Concert Band. 3 p.m. El Campanil Theatre, 602 W. Second St., Antioch. Free; reserved seating. (925) 757-9500.

Presented by West Coast Performing Arts. 3 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $45. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 14 – 18 “Percussion Discussion”

Ken Bergmann is back with his smashing spectacle of drums, cowbells, chairs and more. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $14. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 16 Concert

Annual concert by The Saklan School. 4:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. Free. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 16 “St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland: An Irish Hooley!” Concert led by members of The Kerry Traditional Orchestra. 7 p.m. California Theatre, 351 Railroad Ave., Pittsburg. $25$ (925) 427-1611.

Mar. 17 “Green with Envy”

Presented by Funny Bone Productions. 7:45 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $15. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 17, 19 “Princess Who?”

Performed by El Campanil Children’s Theatre. El Campanil Theatre, 602 W. Second St., Antioch. $8-$12. (925) 757-9500.

Mar. 17 – 19 “Some Enchanted Evening”

Presented by the Brentwood Theater Company. Mt. Diablo Event Center, Trilogy, 1700 Trilogy Parkway, Brentwood. $9-$26. (925) 852- 3612.

Mar. 17 – Apr. 1 “My Three Angels”

Presented by Onstage Theatre. Campbell Theater, 636 Ward St., Martinez. (925) 518-3277.

Mar. 18 Scan-a-thon

Preserve family documents in digital form. Tour center and archives. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Contra Costa County History Center, 724 Escobar St., Martinez. $10 suggested donation. Drop in or register at

Mar. 19 “The French Connection”

Presented by California Symphony. 4 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $42-$72. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 22 Understanding Weight Loss Through Surgery

Learn more about surgical solutions for weight loss. 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Walnut Creek Library, Oak View Room, 1644 N. Broadway, Walnut Creek. Free. Call for reservations (925) 677-5041, ext. 272.

Mar. 23 “23rd Anniversary Celebration”

Presented by Diablo Ballet. 6:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $33-59. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 24 “In the Mood”

A look at America’s Swing Era. 2 and 8 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $47-$59. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 24 – 26 “The Big Bad Musical”

Wonderful blast from the past. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $50-$60. (925) 943-7469. Performed by Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra. 2 p.m. Apr. 1: El Campanil Theatre, 602 W. Second St., Antioch. $7-$15. (925) 757-9500. Apr. 2: Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $10-$30. (925) 943-7469.

Apr. 2 “Painting with Music”

Explore the intersection of symphonic music and visual art. 7:30 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $35.

Apr. 6 – 22 “Glengarry Glen Ross”

Presented by B8 Theatre Company. B8 Theatre Company, 2292 Concord Blvd., Concord. (925) 890-8877.


Mar. 18 Concert

Performed by the Lowell Trio. 7:30 p.m. Clayton Valley Presbyterian Church, 1578 Kirker Pass Road, Clayton. $15 (925) 672-4848.

Mar. 25 Boutique and Vendor Fair

Crafts, including artwork, soaps, jewelry, and vendors such as Tupperware. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Faith Missionary Baptist Church Gym, 4266 Thompson Drive, Concord. Free admission. (925) 687-1440.

Mar. 10, 23 - 25 “Lucky Stiff”


A musical farce. Ygnacio Valley High School, Multi-Use Room, 755 Oak Grove Road, Concord. $8-$12. For more information, contact Kelly Cooper at (925) 528-9178.

Mar. 17 – Apr. 2 “You Can’t Take It with You”

Meet the Sycamores – a madcap clan who sets the bar for eccentricity. Diablo Valley College, 321 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill. $16-$21.


Mar. 18 Plant Sale

A huge selection of beautiful plants to celebrate spring. 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Markham Regional Arboretum Society Nursery. 1202 La Vista Ave., Concord. Free admission.

Mar. 24 Totally Rad 80’s

Benefit auction for Mt. Diablo Elementary School. 5 – 11 p.m. Centre Concord, 5298 Clayton Road, Concord. $60. Reserve by Mar. 10: To donate or for more information, contact Stacy at

Mar. 25 Baking for a Cure

Bake sale for Relay For Life Clayton. 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Starbucks, Clayton Station.

Apr. 1 Faces of Wildlife Gala

Unforgettable experience with live animals to benefit Lindsay Wildlife. 6 p.m. Diablo Country Club, 1700 Clubhouse Road, Diablo. Tickets start at $250. (925) 6272950.

Apr. 24 Swing for Science

Carondelet’s annual golf tournament to benefit the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math program. Shotgun start 11 a.m. Blackhawk Country Club, 599 Blackhawk Club Drive, Danville. $25 discount before Mar. 31.

This is your official notice to appear as juror for the trial of the Big Bad Wolf. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut AT THE LIBRARY Creek. $15. (925) 943-7469. The Clayton Library is at 6125 Clayton Road. Programs are free unless otherwise noted. See full schedule of events at claytonliMar. 25 or call (925) 673-0659.

“Chicago…The Tribute”

Powerful horns, rich vocals and a rockin’ rhythm section. 8 p.m. El Campanil Theatre, 602 W. Second St., Antioch. $10-$27. (925) 757-9500.

Mar. 25 Miles Schon Band

Powerful combination of original music and amazing guitar virtuosity. 8 p.m. California Theatre, 351 Railroad Ave., Pittsburg. $ (925) 427-1611.

Mar. 25 “Pink Floyd Concert Experience”

Presented by West Coast Performing Arts. 8 p.m. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $45. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 26 “That’s Our Snow White!”

Hilarious musical spoof of the classic tale. 2 p.m. California Theatre, 351 Railroad Ave., Pittsburg. $12-$15. (925) 427-1611.

Thru Mar. 14: St. Patrick’s Day Limerick Contest Mar. 13: Clayton Library Book Club, 7 p.m. Mar. 13, 27: Clayton Knits, 1:30 p.m. Mar. 15: La Di Da Vocal Quartet, 6:30 p.m. Mar. 30: Cartooning and Animation, 4 p.m. Registration required.

The Concord Library is at 2900 Salvio St. Programs are free unless otherwise noted. See full schedule of events at or (925) 646-5455. Thru Apr. 15: Tax Help, Fri. and Sat., 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Mar. 13: Meditation, 6:30 p.m. Mar. 20: STEAM, 7 p.m. Mar. 23: Master Gardeners, 6:30 p.m. Mar. 30: Meet Author Novella Carpenter, 6 p.m. Apr. 3: Dig it! 2 p.m. Registration required. Apr. 6: Origami, 4 p.m.


Mar. 30 – Apr. 23 “Needles and Opium”

1st and 3rd Tuesdays Clayton City Council

Mar. 31 – Apr. 23 “End of the Rainbow”

2nd and 4th Tuesdays Clayton Planning Commission

A breathtaking dive into art and addiction. A.C.T.’s Geary Theater, 415 Geary St., San Francisco. $20-$105. (415) 749-2228. Musical drama of Judy Garland’s comeback concerts during Christmas 1968. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $39-$44. (925) 943-7469.

Mar. 31 – Apr. 29 “Sisters Matsumoto”

Three sisters return home after internment in this heartwarming story of what it means to be American. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. $33-$55.

7 p.m. Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. (925) 673-7304 or 7 p.m., Hoyer Hall, Clayton Library, 6125 Clayton Road. (925) 673-7304 or

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


Page 12

Clayton Pioneer •

March 10, 2017

NCS championships: De La Salle 2, Carondelet 1 through the DAL Valley Division with a 13-0 record. League co-MVPs forward Nick Klarman and guard Garrett Pascoe powered the Eagles’ undefeated run. The team defeated Foothill of Pleasanton in their NCS DI first-round game 5751 using a 20-6 margin in the third quarter to pull off the win. CVCHS was eliminated in the Section quarterfinals 62-58 by Heritage of Brentwood.

JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

Déjà vu all over again? De La Salle and Carondelet each have had an unusual amount of success in winter sports and this year was much of the same although both schools had a big disappointment in the final game of the year on the soccer pitch, just like in 2016. The Spartans and Cougars were once again atop the North Coast Section basketball summit and DLS wrestling continued its near decadeslong wrestling success. Those championships partially covered over the pain of each school’s loss in the NCS soccer championship game.

GIRLS BASKETBALL Carondelet won its 12th Section championship since 2003 when they beat Heritage of Brentwood 56-31 in the finals. What set this apart from previous Cougar titles is the fact it was the first Carondelet Division I championship. The four lopsided wins by a total of 160 points places Carondelet as the second seed in the NorCal Open Division Championships. They host Cardinal Newman (28-3) of Santa Rosa, the Division IV champs, in the opening round of the NorCal playoffs this Friday. The Cougars are 28-4 with their only losses to California teams to NorCal Open Division top seed Archbishop Mitty and SouCal Open Division No. 1 Clovis West. The Cougars this season ran their EBAL unbeaten streak to 66 games. They have lost one league game since 2008-2009 with seven undefeated seasons in eight years. Clayton Valley Charter lost to EBAL team California 48-39 in the opening round of the DI playoffs. CVCHS (8-2) was second to Concord (9-1) in the DAL Valley Division standings.

Photo courtesy De La Salle wrestling

Clayton resident Jonathon Hackett (right) won the North Coast Section 170-pound wrestling championship as a memeber of the team champ De La Salle Spartans. The title earned him a second trip to the State Meet last weekend where the senior won four matches before being eliminated. Hackett’s freshman brother Lance is also on the DLS varsity wrestling team.

BOYS BASKETBALL De La Salle (27-5) under its third head coach, Gus Argenal, in three years won its 12th NCS championship with 53-51 win over EBAL rival Dublin in the NCS finals. It was the rubber match after the Spartans won the league game and the Gaels beat DLS in the EBAL playoff finals. The NCS finale

was termed a “classic” by longtime prep observers as junior Justin Pratt tipped in a missed shot with 1.2 seconds left for the winning bucket. The Spartans won all 13 EBAL games while being ranked near the top in the Bay Area most of the season. DLS is fourth seed in the NorCal Open Division and faces fifth

After Williams broke the discus record the oldest track and field mark belongs to legendary Clayton Valley Hall of Famer Mickey Wharton with a 58 foot, 2-1/2 shot put mark in 1965 when he placed ninth in the State Meet. DAL spring league play is underway. Schedules and highlights for spring sports: Baseball- The league season begins April 18 with Clayton Valley Charter in a highlycompetitive Foothill Division with Acalanes, Alhambra, Campolindo, College Park and Northgate. College Park has had the most recent success at NCS including the 2015 championship and a semi-final showing last year. Perennial NCs participant CVCHS were eliminated in the quarterfinals last spring. Northgate was a Division II finalist at NCS while Acalanes is defending NCS DIII champ. DAL teams will play a home and home series with league games ending May 18. The NCS playoffs begin May 23-24 with the finals set June 2-3. De La Salle won the title last year and the Spartans have taken three of the last five Section crowns. DLS is ranked as one of the top 20 teams in America early this season. Boys Golf- CVCHS is in the Valley Division. The DAL tournament is May 1 before

the NCS Division I qualifier and DII championships are May 8. The DI championship is May 15, one week before the NorCal championships. Lacrosse- The DAL has a single division in both boys and girls lacrosse. Eight schools including Clayton Valley Charter are fielding teams in each league while Ygnacio Valley is the ninth girls teams. The busy 18-game girls league schedule began at the end of February and continues until May 5. The boys are on the same schedule but each team gets four byes in the TuesdayFriday schedule. NCS girls tournament starts 10 and the boys a day later. Swimming & DivingThe Foothill Division features five aquatic powerhouses which means Clayton Valley will be a favorite in the Valley Division, which begins its full dual meet schedule next week. The final league dual meets are April 18-19. The DVAL championships are May 4-6 and then Concord Community Pool will again host NCS May 11-13 and the third CIF State meet May 1920. Softball- Alhambra has become a softball powerhouse while winning three consecutive Division II Section playoffs, prompting the Bulldogs

seed Salesian of Richmond (27-4) in the tournament opener Friday in Concord. Salesian won the NCS DIII title over Campolindo last weekend. Top seed Woodcreek is in the Spartans half of the draw should they defeat Salesian, an old Catholic Athletic League rival. Clayton Valley Charter ran

GIRLS SOCCER Carondelet played its first 23 games allowing two goals only twice. At halftime of the NCS Division I championship match the Cougars led 2015 champion Liberty 1-0. Then the Lions of Brentwood scored three rapid fire goals in the first five minutes of the second half and held off a Carondelet rally for a 3-2 win in the finals. It was revenge for Liberty, which lost to Carondelet 1-0 in the NCS semi-finals a year ago, possibly costing the Brentwood school three straight championships. Carondelet won its second straight EBAL regular-season title and that gave the Cougars the top seed in NCS Division 1. Clayton Valley was eliminated in the opening round of NCS 3-0 by No. 2 seed and eventual champion Liberty. The Eagles rebounded from a winless non-league schedule to finish second to Northgate in the DAL Valley Division with a 7-2-1 record. BOYS SOCCER Clayton Valley Charter lost its NCS Division I first-round game 2-1 to Monte Vista after finishing third in the league, wrapping up a 13-6-4 record that included four straight losses to end the season. For the third year in a row De La Salle fell out of the NCS tournament on penalty kicks. And twice it has been in the championship match. Coach Derricke Brown won

his 100th game in charge of the Spartans this season but that was washed away when his team tied Berkeley 1-1 after regulation and overtime of the Section finals. The Yellowjackets won a shootout 4-3 to claim their first NCS title since 2004 when they also eliminated DLS on penalty kicks in the semi-finals.

WRESTLING Coach Mark Halvorson’s De La Salle Spartans dominated both Section wrestling championships, taking two team titles for the eighth time in the past nine years. At the NCS Championships De La Salle was four points shy of its Section record set a year ago, with 335.5 points. Six Spartans won individual titles and eight DLS wrestlers qualified for State Meet. Darryl Aiello of De La Salle followed up his third straight NCS championship with a runner-up 220-pound finish at State last weekend. He lost to Cade Belshay 7-4 of team champion Buchanan. De La Salle tied for seventh at State, once again as the top NCS team. Senior Jonathon Hackett of Clayton was first at EBAL and NCS at 170 pounds. He reached his second State Meet and ended up winning four matches there. Other DLS section champions were Patrick Ramirez (120), Peyton Omania (145), Dwayne Guerrero (132) and Adrian Gomez (138). The Spartans also rolled through three opponents at the NCS Dual Meet Championships. They scored over 60 points each in the first two matches and then took a 59-9 victory win over Liberty of Brentwood in the final match. Andy DeLira of Clayton Valley Charter took third at NCS to reach State at 285 pounds. He won a pair of matches there before being eliminated.

54-year-old discus throw record broken at CVCHS as spring sports season begins for new DAL divisions JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

High school teams have been dodging rainy weather and wet facilities to practice and now get Diablo Athletic and East Bay Athletic league schedules underway as winter turns to spring this month. Inclement weather didn’t seem to impact Clayton Valley Charter’s Jeff Williams. Fresh off playing for the Eagles in the North Coast Section basketball playoffs the night before Williams competed in his first track and field meet recently and promptly broke the school’s oldest record. At the De La Salle Super 7 meet he threw the discus 169 feet, 11 inches, shattering the school’s previous best mark of 164-7 set in 1963 by Ken Cole when Clayton Valley High was five-years-old. “Discus is highly technical and timing is everything. With no prior practice due to Jeff being a multi-sport athlete, you can expect to see some great things from Jeff this season,” said assistant coach Mark Hicks. The record throw would have placed Williams in the top 10 at the 2016 State Meet. He’s already earned all-DAL honors in football and basketball and hopes to cap off his senior year with more success in the weight events this spring.

Jason Rogers

Jason Williams is enjoying quite a final year of athletics at Clayton Valley Charter High School. The senior has been part of CVCHS championship teams in football and basketball, earning all-Diablo Athletic League honors in each. The day after his ugly eagles basketball team was eliminated from the North Coast Section playoffs Williams took part in his first track and field meet and had quite a result. He threw the discus 169-11 at the De La Salle Super 7 meet to break a 54-year-old school record by over five feet. The previous mark was 164-7 set by Ken Cole in 1963.

to be reclassified to Di this season. The five Foothill Division opponents for Alhambra are all former DVAL teams. Concord High won three NCS titles between 2010 and 2013.

The softball schedule matches baseball with the double round-robin schedule running from April 18 to May 18. NCS playoffs begin May 23-24 with the finals June 2-3.

Boys Tennis- Matches start this week for the nineschool DAL schedule until April 20 with Tuesday and Thursday matches each week. The DAL championships are April 27-29. The Section team championships May 9-11-13 and the singles and doubles tournament May 5-6. Miramonte and Acalanes have had the most success in recently years among DAL teams. Track & Field- The track and field schedule is underway with the first round of dual meet this week. In the Foothill Division Acalanes, Campolindo, Las Lomas and Miramonte will square off with CVCHS. The division’s five dual meets are spread out through April 26. The league meet at Campolindo in Moraga features trials on May 6 and finals May 13. The Tri-Valley NCS Championships are May 20, the NCS Meet of Championship May 26-27 and the State Meet June 2-3. Boys Volleyball- Acalanes and Alhambra join former DVAL schools CVCHS, Concord, Mt. Diablo and Ygnacio Valley in the Valley Division The double-round robin league schedule runs from Mar. 2-May 4 with matches on Tuesdays and Thursdays. NCS playoffs run through May 20. NorCal championships are May 23-27.


March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Athlete Spotlight

Taylor Heuerman Grade: Senior School: CVCHS Sport: Soccer

CVCHS senior Taylor Heuerman has finished his final season of high school soccer by playing with his classmate Pedro Hernandez in the fourth annual North Coast Section all-star game, leaving behind a great impact on the soccer program at his school with four years on varsity as a forward and winger. Before high school, he played soccer, basketball, baseball and ran track, but as he began playing on club soccer team, Diablo FC 98, there was no time to commit to other sports. “I played soccer 365 days a year,” Heuerman says. His hard work paid off and proved to be crucial in the rebuilding of

the CVCHS boys soccer program. Guillermo Jara became head coach during Heuerman’s freshman year so they were together for four years. “I have had the pleasure to coach Taylor for the last four years. He shows up every day with a smile and understands what it is to represent CVCHS as a student athlete.” “During my freshman and sophomore seasons, we were the worst team in D1 and never even made the playoffs,” Heuerman remembers, “My junior and senior seasons, however, we were in the top 5 D1 teams with a really impressive record and made NCS play-

offs both seasons.” An impressive goal scored by Heuerman in the final league game of his junior year won his team the game and earned the Play of the Week by Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area. He was also awarded first team all-DVAL. He repeated as all-league this winter in the new Diablo Athletic League. In addition to playing soccer, Heuerman is a member of the CVCHS ASB Leadership class as well as Multicultural Club and Adventure Club. He has been on CV Honor Roll throughout his high school years with a cumulative 4.1 GPA. Heuerman enjoyed his friends and classmates attending their games to support them and watch him and his team play throughout his high school career. He plans on attending college in Southern California to study business and journalism, and would like to pursue a career as a sports journalist. CVCHS student journalist Sydney Skow wrote this Spotlight.

The Clayton Pioneer congratulates Taylor and thanks Athlete Spotlight sponsors Dr. Laura Lacey & Dr. Christopher Ruzicka who have been serving the Clayton and Concord area for 25 years at Family Vision Care Optometry. Do you know a young athlete who should be recognized? Perhaps he or she has shown exceptional sportsmanship, remarkable improvement or great heart for the sport. Send your nomination for the Pioneer Athlete Spotlight today to

Page 13

Clayton player Jenna West picked for Under 15 girls U.S. National Training Camp

Diablo View Middle School eighth grader Jenna West was selected for the first u.S. under 15 girls National Training Camp last month in Carson, California. The camp was led by u.S. Soccer Women’s Development coach Mark Carr who called up 40 players, almost all of whom were born in 2003. West is one of three players from Northern California for the Photo courtesy West family start of a two-year cycle for this age group as u15’s before transitioning to u17s in 2019 when they will form the core of the team that will attempt to qualify for the 2020 FIFA u-17 Women’s World Cup. West currently plays for the elite Clubs National League team at Mustang Soccer Club where she is a team co-captain and plays center back. She participates in National Training Center trainings and is also rostered on the 2003 Region IV (13 western states) Olympic Development team, the Cal North Olympic Development team and the NorCal Player Development Program. She will be attending Clayton Valley Charter in the fall and also currently participates in CYO track and field for St. Bonaventure CYO where she was 100 meter and high jump champion at the 2016 Oakland Diocese Championships.

CV Charter juniors named basketball league co-MVPs JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

Clayton Valley Charter High School juniors Nick Klarman and Garrett Pascoe were named co-most valuable players of the Diablo Athletic League Valley Division for the undefeated league champion Eagles. The duo were the only CVCHS winter athletes to garner DAL MVP honors while Brianna Simonich of Carondelet was soccer MVP in the East Bay Athletic League. Before the league season, Ugly Eagles coach Eric Bamberger confidently predicted a league title and his co-MVPs then led the way to a 13-0 DAL mark. Pascoe’s honor matched two league MVPs his older sister Hailey received before her 2015 graduation from CVCHS. She is now playing Division I basketball for Lehigh University.

His coach says that Garrett Pascoe did “any and everything I asked him to do. Score, rebound, defend pass, lead, talk to players individually, address the team as a whole. He is a coach’s dream. He makes you better as a coach, he makes his teammates better on the court and he pushes himself to get better every day.” His junior runningmate Klarman “finally came out of his shell as a player this year. He dominated most games with his speed, shooting and size. The scary thing is, even as great as he was this year, he still has a lot of room to improve as a player and I believe will even be more dominate next year,” said Bamberger. “A lot of games he was our leading scorer, leading rebounder and guarded the best player on the other team. That’s how valuable he was.” Clayton Valley, Carondelet and De La Salle winter athletes getting all-league honors:

GIRLS SOCCER Clayton Valley Charter: 1st team- Lizzie Annison, Sierra Bruni; 2nd team- Kaci Trujillo, Cassie Bizicki; Honorable Mention- Chrystina Heuerman, Sarah Cook, Olivia Kreamer

GIRLS BASKETBALL CVC: 1st team- Kelly Osterkamp, Bridget Hyland; 2nd team- Kat Segovia; HMHannah Kommer, Jade Davis

Car: MVPBrianna Simonich; 1st team- Maaeva Dwiggins; 2nd team- Michela Carondelet: 1st team- Cas- Vanderkllught; HM- Ali Bamsidy Tshimbalanga, Elizabeth berger Ospeck, Gillian Cabral, BOYS BASKETBALL Angelin Anderson; 2nd teamCVC: MVPs- Pascoe, KlarRory Biles, Devin Lozano; man; 1st teamVince Lontz; 2nd HM- Angelina Scoma, Kiki teamJeff Williams, Spencer Evangelista Tamichi; HM- Nick Becker BOYS SOCCER DLS: 1st team- Emeka CVC: 1st team- Pedro HerUdenyi, Colby Orr; 2nd teamnandez, Taylor Heuerman; Connor O’Dea, Justin Pratt 2nd team- Angel Solis, Austin Ramirez; HM- Hirisian Tasev, WRESTLING Jesus Martinez, Kellen DresCVC: 1st team- Ryan Fischdow er, Andy DeLira; 2nd teamChristian Utne; 3rd team- Gabe De La Salle: 1st teamNavarro, Juan Pablo Wilson, Omar Jiron, Ian Nicolas; 2nd Ben Acebo team- Luke Giusto, James Peerson, Wyatt Hattich; HM- Evan DLS: 1st team- Peyton Lonestar, Yianni Reynolds Omania, Darryl Aiello, Riley Hilt, Jake Lillenstein, Patrick Ramirez, Dwayne Guerrero, Adrian Gomez, Jonathon Hackett, Davor Skaric; 2nd team- Logan Sumulong, Wade Willet, Cristian Villasenor; 3rd team- Ankhaa Enkhmandkh, Mitch Vanloon

Diablo FC honors 2016 Coaches of the Year at benefit dinner

Jay Bedecarré

Clayton Valley Charter juniors Nick Klarman (left) and Garrett Pascoe stood atop the Diablo Athletic League Valley Conference basketball landscape this year leading the ugly eagles to a 13-0 league championship. For their accomplishments they were voted co-most valuable players. Forward Klarman and guard Pascoe will return next season for their senior year looking to repeat as No. 1.

Jay Bedecarré

The area’s competitive soccer program, Diablo FC, held its 14th annual benefit Crab Feed and Auction last month at Centre Concord and took the occasion to honor its 2016 coaches of the year. Brian Voltattorni (second from left) was named boys coach of the year and Miguel Gonzalez (second from right) was tabbed top girls coach for the second year in a row. One of Gonzalez’ teams won their NorCal Premier State Cup division championship. Director of coaching zach Sullivan (left) and club president Dan Pauline of Clayton made the coaching award presentations.

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Page 14

Clayton Pioneer •

March 10, 2017


2 local high school football vacancies filled by ex-Eagles JAY BEDECARRÉ Clayton Pioneer

Concord and Mt. Diablo high schools have filled their head football coaching positions with men having strong connections to Clayton Valley Charter High’s successful program. Clayton Valley alumnus and long-time assistant coach Paul Reynaud was named last month as the new Concord High coach while it’s now been announced that Vontre Mason is taking over at the area’s oldest school, Mt. Diablo. Mason has been coaching at CVCHS, in particular with the defensive linemen, for the past four seasons. Head coach Tim Murphy says, “Vontre is the definition of a guy who made the most out of a difficult situation. Growing up in

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Richmond he used football and school to eventually earn a scholarship, leading to his degree and teaching credential. He is a hard worker and outstanding role model for the kids he will be coaching.” MDHS athletic director Bryan Shaw adds, “We are excited to give Coach Mason his first opportunity to head up his own program. He brings with him a track record of success and hard work.” A long-time coach in the area says of Mason, “I have  watched him coach the CV line of scrimmage during practice. His group was outstanding.  Very knowledgeable and energetic, a great addition for the Red Devils.” Murphy concurs saying, “He is a great fit for Mt Diablo.”

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Mason will be taking over a Red Devils program that hasn’t had a winning season since 2009. He is the fifth head coach since that season. Reynaud graduated from Clayton Valley in 1999 and played football at St. Mary’s College, finishing up just before the Gaels ended their football program. He rejoined his high school coach Herc Pardi on the CVHS staff as offensive line and strength and conditioning coach from 2004 through 2011 and then served on Murphy’s first two Clayton Valley Charter staffs as assistant head coach. Reynaud spent the last three years as defensive line coach at California High in San Ramon.

“Paul has been coaching and playing in the East Bay most of his life. He relates really well with kids and he will make them work and hold them accountable every step of the way. He loves the game and he is good for high school football in every way,” Murphy stated. The Ugly Eagles and Minutemen will meet next fall in the Diablo Athletic League Foothill Conference while Mt. Diablo is now in the DAL Valley Conference where their league opponents are College Park, Berean Christian, Alhambra, Ygnacio Valley and Northgate. Ygnacio also has a new head coach for 2017 in veteran East Bay coach Clyde Byrd.

Sports Shorts


Clayton Valley Charter High School Athletic Boosters hold their 23rd annual Crab Feed and Auction this Saturday, Mar. 11, at Centre Concord benefitting the 26 sports at the school. Attendees must be 21 or older. For more info email or go to for info to order tickets online for a night of food, drink, dancing, auctions and raffle prizes.


Ygnacio Valley High is hosting its annual War Path all-comers track and field meet this Saturday, Mar. 11, from 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. on the all-weather track at the Concord school. There will be eight individual events (shot put, high jump, long jump and 100-200-400-800-1600 meter runs) and two relays for boys and girls from preschool through high school and senior classifications. YVHS is using the meet as a team fund. There is no preregistration required. Contact coach George Francis at for details.

Jason Rogers

Vontre Mason is taking over as head football coach at the area’s oldest school, Mt. Diablo. Mason has been coaching the defensive linemen for the past four seasons at Clayton Valley Charter High School.

grades. Practices are held on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. The season runs through May 13, culminating with the Oakland Diocese championships. For more information call 826-7426, email coach Matt Tillman at or go to


Formal tryouts for Diablo FC under 8 through U14 competitive teams (birth years 2004-2011 have concluded but coaches are still holding player evaluations. Under 15 and older team tryouts will be in May after spring league games conclude. Visit to get more information and signup for all tryouts.


City champion Dana Hills Swim Team are accepting registration from new and returning families online. Practice begins April 10 and the final day for swimmer registration is May 12. For more info visit


Forest Park Swim Team coach Jeff Mellinger is offering spring swim clinics through the end of March. The afternoon and evening sessions improve strokes for swimmers of all skill levels ages 4-18 before the start of summer rec swimming seaCVCHS BASEBALL HOSTS son. The Flyers will be holding team signup at their pool this 5TH HOT STOVE DINNER APRIL 21 Sunday, Mar. 12, from noon-2 p.m. Contact coach Mellinger at The fifth annual CVCHS Hot Stove Dinner is being held on for details. Friday, April 21. Honorees will be members of the 1960 Clayton Valley baseball team of head coach Vic Petreshene which we be CONCORD COBRAS FOOTBALL SIGNUPS inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame in May. Current NOW TAKEN ONLINE baseball coach Casey Coakley says the evening’s festivities celeConcord Cobras tackle football program is taking signups for brate the National Pastime for baseball fans, Clayton Valley its fall season online. The football program is open for youth five alumni and current CVCHS. Door prizes, raffles and steak din- to 14 years of age. For more information, send an email to ner benefit CVCHS Baseball and its scholarship fund. The event or visit their website at is from 6-9 p.m. at Shadelands Civic Arts Center, 111 N. Wiget Ln. at Ygnacio Valley Rd. in Walnut Creek. For more information and to buy tickets at $50 each email coach Coakley at OAKHURST ORCAS SET MEET AND GREET FOR MAR. 22 Head coach Jasmine Castillo has announced that the Orcas are accepting mail or drop off registrations for the summer rec ALL OUT SPORTS CROWNS CRUSH swim team season now at Oakhurst Country Club. Meet and WINTER VOLLEYBALL CHAMPS greet registration at the pool is on Wednesday, Mar. 22, and The Clayton adult late winter coed 5’s volleyball league Thursday, April 20, from 6:30-8 p.m. Early registration discounts recently wrapped up with Crush winning the title. The team are available until Mar. 22. Visit for more included, Michael Siradze, Erin Bennett, Captain Mike (Marat) info and registration forms. Spring practice begins April 24. Mudriyan, Joel Smith and Melanie Ruiz. DC…demolition crew were second and Block Rockers third. The Wednesday night SIGN-UPS FOR ST. FRANCIS CYO TRACK & FIELD spring league is currently underway. Visit ACCEPTED ONLINE for more info on the program. Sign-ups for St. Francis CYO track and field are now being accepted online. Practices are at Ygnacio Valley High School CONCORD CUP XXIV ACCEPTING track on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 5:30 - 6:30 SOCCER TEAM REGISTRATIONS p.m. Contact coach George Francis at coachfrancisyvhs@hotThe area’s largest annual youth soccer tournament, Concord for details. Visit St. Francis CYO website at Cup, returns for its 24th season at a variety of local parks May for updates. 20-21. Boys and girls club and recreation teams from under 10 through U19 are eligible to participate. Diablo FC, Mt. Diablo VISTA DIABLO DOLPHINS SWIM TEAM Soccer and Concord AYSO co-sponsor the tournament. Visit TAKING ONLINE REGISTRATION for complete information and to register a Vista Diablo Dolphins is taking online registration for the team to participate. summer season for boys and girls ages 3-18. Get more info at or email


The 2017 class for the Clayton Valley High School Hall of Fame includes five Eagles teams and event organizers are reaching out to locate members of those teams. The honorees will be inducted Friday, May 19, at Shadelands Art Center in Walnut Creek. The teams are 1960 baseball of head coach Vic Petreshene, 1972 wrestling of coaches Glen Scrimger and Bill Nelson, 1978 softball and coach Larry Fogelstrom and 1994 girls water polo (coach Dave Boland) and 1994 girls swimming (coach Tom Sparks). Players on those teams should send a note with their contact info to Clayton Valley HS Athletic Hall of Fame, P.O. Box 502, Clayton 94517.


Springwood is hosting a spring clinic through April 7 on Monday through Thursday afternoons. There are two time slots: 3:30-4:30 or 4:30-5:30 p.m. Workouts include 15 minutes of dryland and 45 minutes in the pool. Signups for the summer recreation Springwood team will be held on Sunday, Mar. 19, from 24 p.m. Sports Basement in Walnut Creek. For more info email


Spring leagues including adult softball, co-ed adult volleyball and youth basketball and volleyball offered by All Out Sports Leagues in Clayton are taking registration now online. For comConcord AYSO where “Everyone Plays” is hosting open reg- plete information on All Out Sports programs, visit alloutsportistration for its fall soccer season on Monday, April 3, and Thurs- day, April 20, from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. and on Saturday, May 13, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. all at Concord Bible Church, 4975 ConTERRAPIN WINTER-SPRING SWIM CLINICS cord Blvd., Concord. Fees for fall season (Aug. 1-Nov. 5) are CONTINUE THROUGH APRIL $175. Register by May 13 for a $50 discount. Visit concorThe Terrapins Swim Team is offering winter and spring for more info. stroke and turn clinics by coach Dan Cottam at their Concord facility for summer recreation swimmers ages 7-18 who want to ST. BONAVENTURE CYO TRACK UNDERWAY get a jump on the summer season on Sundays through April. St. Bonaventure CYO spring track and field Saturday meets The nationally-ranked Terrapins are also taking signups for begin this month and is still holding registration. The track and swimmers ages six and above of all levels for their year-round field program is open to boys and girls in second through eighth swim team. For information visit


March 10, 2017

Clayton Pioneer •

Page 15

Cal and Saint Mary’s look to enjoy a lot of basketball madness in March The University of California, Berkeley basketball team is in the midst of a quality season. They are 19-9 overall with a record of 10-6 in the Pac-12 Conference. But what this winning record does is put Cal in quite a predicament known in the sports world as “The Bubble.” Cal is somewhere between being good enough to make the NCAA Tournament and not being good enough, which would relegate them to the second-tier NIT. In recent projections by “bracketology” experts, the Golden Bears are labeled as the fifth to last team in the 68team tournament. That could change on a whim. For example, as recent as Feb. 20, they were projected as the 10th to last team in the field. So, in less than two-week’s time, Cal’s safety net shrank by 50 percent. If Cal manages to squeak its way into March Madness


(whether by winning the Pac12 Conference Tournament or by earning an at-large berth), they could be a dark horse threat to advance. Cal was upset last season as a fourth seed in the first round by 13th seed Hawaii. That is still fresh in the memory of coach Cuonzo Martin and his team. The Bears will likely try to return the favor, so to speak, on a higher ranked seed. Cal has a likely top 10 draft pick leading their team. Ivan Rabb is a force offensively, and has

the potential to lead Cal to a couple victories in March. While Cal is no sure thing to get into the NCAA Tournament, Saint Mary’s is as sure as a mid-major comes. The Gaels worked their way to a 26-3 regular season record and a 16-2 finish in the West Coast Conference. That already sounds incredibly good. But when you take a closer look, you’d see that two of SMC’s three losses were to Gonzaga, a team that won their first 29 games and were ranked No. 1. Saint Mary’s is projected to earn somewhere between a fifth and seventh seed. Either way, they will be playing a March Madness game as the favorite. While this by no means guarantees a win, it is still better than the other way around. There is also a decent chance that the Gaels will play their first two games in Sacramento and, if they make it,

their next two games would be in San Jose. This would actually give Saint Mary’s a potential inside track to the Final Four. There is plenty of recent history showing that a mid-major school can reach the Final 4. Butler, VCU and Wichita State have all achieved this feat from smaller conferences. While a best case scenario would be to make the Final Four, Saint Mary’s will still have their window open for at least another year. Star player Jock Landale is a junior, as is guard Emmett Naar. All in all, both Cal and Saint Mary’s fans have reason to be excited this month. Cal will try be this year’s Cinderella story and SMC will attempt to make their first Sweet 16 ever. Hopefully, they can bust some brackets and stir up some madness of their own.

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mals, reach out to your local animal shelter. A limited number of supply kits to help Good Samaritans raise young kittens are available at ARF and local Pet Food Express stores.

Spring is here, and with it comes a flood of newborn animals. During kitten season – usually March through September – waves of tiny, delicate newborn kittens arrive at animal shelters every day. Most young kittens are turned into shelters by wellmeaning people who assume they were abandoned by their mother, but that might not always be the case. If you find newborn kittens, assess the situation before you act. Mama might not be in your line of sight, but that doesn’t mean she’s gone. Keeping kittens with their mother offers them the best chance of survival. Without mom, young kittens need around-the-clock care that is nearly impossible to replicate in a shelter and can result in young kittens being euthanized.

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er dangerous situation. Put together a safe shelter and leave out food in case mom comes back. Keep the food some distance from the shelter as the mama will want to keep other animals away from her litter. If you have waited several hours, set up food and shelter and mama still hasn’t returned, remove the kittens. If you find yourself caring for newborn kittens, their second best chance for survival is bottle-feeding and caring for them until they are old enough and/or ready to be spayed or neutered and adopted (about 8 weeks old). For information on how to care for newborn ani-

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lap to say hi. The adoption fee for a cat is $75. Meet your forever friend at Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation, 2890 Mitchell Drive, Walnut Creek, during adoption hours: Noon to 6 pm Wednesday & Thursday, Noon to 7 pm Friday, and Noon to 6 pm Saturday & Sunday. Would you like to be part of the heroic team that saves the lives of rescued dogs and cats? Can you share Two-year-old Mac is a lively boy that wants your talents to connect people and animals? ARF volunto be at the center of all the fun. He is friendly teers are making a difference! For more information see and affectionate too and will get right into your our website,, or call (925) 256-1ARF.

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Page 16

Clayton Pioneer •

Slide, from page 1

Creek, was moving against the road, buckling and cracking the pavement. Over the next two days, the slide broke the water main twice. It moved fast, and by Thursday, the damaged road was impassable and the water main broken again. At noon on Feb. 24, county authorities closed the road —indefinitely. In a blink, residents found themselves stranded without water on one side or the other of a massive landslide, stretching 400 feet along Morgan Territory and another 400 feet upslope. On the opposite side of the road, they stared at a huge, gaping hole. At the bottom, a broken blue water main lay spewing water into the mud. Redwood boards littered the


hole, evidence of the expensive fence that had once stood above it. A power pole about midway in the slide was leaning dangerously over the road at a 30 degree angle. With the closure, the only vehicle access to the 256 homes on the south side of the slide is over a one-lane, storm-ravaged mountain road—15 miles to Livermore. County officials are scouting the area in search of a viable alternative to the long detour. The process is slow, says County Public Works Director, Julie Bowen. What few trails and fire roads there are all cross private property. “We’re dealing with 30 land owners,” she said at a community meeting last Thursday. The meeting was attended by officials from CC Public Works, East County Fire, Cal Fire, CC Sheriff ’s department, Contra Costa Water District, MDUSD



March 10, 2017

Searching for a new normal On Feb. 24, daily life changed dramatically for more than 800 residents caught behind a massive landslide. A few neighbors share their thoughts.

Tamara Steiner/Clayton Pioneer

emergency services were the priority for Cal Fire Batallion Chief Mike Marcucci (third from left) and eCCFPD responders as they prepare to stage an engine on the south side of the closure.

and more than 200 residents at a private ranch near the slide. The news was bad. “There is no quick fix,” Bowen said. “It’s going to be months.” A request to the Board of Supervisors to declare the area a state of emergency estimates road repairs to begin around May 15. East County Fire and CalFire have stationed an engine and ambulance on the south side of the slide, according to East County chief Hugh Henderson. In a medical emergency. a helicopter will be dispatched automatically. There are five landing sites in the slide zone. This is small comfort to Megan Traum, who is in her 22nd week of a high risk pregnancy. “I’m not sure how many more months I can continue to walk back and forth three times a day. I want to


be sure I have a way to get to the hospital.” Many of the families in the areas have young children, creating massive transport issues. Several families have opted to do independent study, keeping kids at home. “Home study it is until we have a safe route to Marsh Creek,” said Sarah W. who has three children. A Mt. Diablo School District representative at the meeting will look into providing a school bus to the north side of the slide. Some residents have stationed a vehicle on each side of the slide, driving to the barricade and walking across the closure. Residents are worried that this option will close off once construction begins in May. Others have opted to move for the duration. “I am leaving tomorrow,” posted Curry Creek resident Julie E. on the neighborhood Facebook page.” I cannot do another week of driving that nail-biter road.” The neighborhood was without water for a week until CCWD could install 1400 feet of flexible pipe above ground. Water service was restored while residents were attending the community meeting. During the week without

Nancy E. Bennett

water, CCWD provided bottled water for drinking. As residents approach the end of their second week of the “new normal,” emotions run high. Many are frustrated with the slow pace of finding alternate access. Heavy rains again last weekend added to the danger of more sliding. But despite the tense situation, neighbors are pulling together. “This has not been an easy couple of weeks for all of us,” says Tracy Hillery. “But everyone seems to be pulling together, picking up water for us, offering rides and greeting each other with smiles and asking if we need anything. “We are so proud of our Clayton community. For slide updates, go to h t t p : / / w w w. c o . c o n t r a

Photos, clockwise from top left: 1. Residents were without power for one day while PG&E straightened and raised a power pole damaged by the slide. 2. Water main broken by landslide left residents without water for a week. 3. Lito Calimlim hauls CCWD supplied bottled water across the slide zone. 4. A failed culvert sends water rushing across the one lane road that is the only vehicle access to the south side of the slide.

This is my evening. Drive to motel to check on family. Kiss, say good-by. Drive home... Fill downstairs toilet with water from the pool. Feed dog and fill water bowl with Crystal Geyser...Whiskey. Another Whiskey. 30 minutes of TV. Let dog out to pee. Fall asleep. Wake up at 0130 hrs. only to remember the only working toilet is downstairs. Kevin Keeler This has hit hard and fast and has been a shock. I never imagined that when I left home to pick up my kids from school on Friday that we would return to our road being completely closed down without notice... Sarah W.

Our family’s biggest disruption was moving four kids to grandma’s in WC so they could still attend school. Each morning we trek out to Clayton three times because they start at different times...We live in an incredible neighborhood where we are all looking out for each other. During the fire people scattered for the most part. This slide has brought people closer and we are a pretty tight knit neighborhood now. Karen Duggan

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MAR 10 Clayton Pioneer 2017  

Newspaper for Clayton California. Local news, sports, schools and events.

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