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honor MIGHTY OAKS WARRIOR PROGRAM

holiday BEST PUMPKIN PIES IN THE NORTH COUNTY

style MODERN EYEWEAR JOINS DOWNTOWN N OV E M B E R 2 021 Prsrt Std US Postage PAID Permit 19 13Stars Paso Robles CA ECRWSS

Local Postal Customer

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Certified Represented Both Buyer & Seller

Home Staging & Estate Liquidation Specialist! Stunning views prevail from every room in this unique West Templeton property. Situated on an oak studded parcel, this 2900 +/- sf home is located just minutes from Downtown Templeton, Trader Joes, Local Flavor Cuisine, and Hwy 101. The expansive floorplan includes a fully equipped Chef’s kitchen, inviting formal dining room complete with freestanding wood stove and views overlooking the pool, custom designed book nook, Step-Down living room with picture windows, fireplace and sunroom. Enjoy the lower living area that can be fully designed as your home office, home gym, or entertaining. You’ll appreciate the expansive, newly renovated deck surrounding the pool with additional amenities including power, solar heating, a gorgeous copper wet bar and powder room. The property is fenced for horses and has its own tack room - perfect to satisfy your equestrian enthusiast. The property also includes a detached large shop with concrete floors and power.

3260 Ridge Road, Templeton 93465

Represented Seller

8110 Settlers Place, Paso Robles 93446 Welcome to your very own oasis nestled in the Paso Robles Wine Country. This privately gated 4 bed/ 3 bath, 2056+/- sf home nicely situated on 2 acres is tastefully remodeled to suit even the most discerning of clients. As you walk through the entry, you are welcomed with stylish travertine floors, a beautifully remodeled kitchen with granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and a colossal kitchen island complete with a wine fridge and extra storage- ideal for the entertaining enthusiast. The garage has been transformed into an inclusive bedroom/full kitchen area with its own private entrance for guests, or other options. The master bedroom provides a full walk-in closet and sliding glass door to enjoy the cool air on summer nights. The opportunities are endless, make this your horse sanctuary or enjoy your own Spanish varietals of Arbosana and Arbequina organic olive oil producing orchard. The acreage includes its own wine grapevines, is fully fenced and cross fenced for horses or 4H- animals, and sports a 30 x 40 Metal Shop towards the rear of the property. The shop comes fully prepared for projects and toys with concrete floors, a large roll-up door, and ample power. The property also runs on solar to offset those power bills. With only a 5-minute drive to Tobin James Cellars and minutes to renowned vineyards and world-class golfing, this is a property you do not want to miss.

Represented Both Buyer & Seller

1736 Kings Dr, Paso Robles 93446

Represented Seller

Represented Buyer

620 Brookhill Drive, Paso Robles 93446 Great location in Sierra Bonita Village right across from Turtle Creek Park! Two bedroom, two bath Cavalier model. Two car garage with concrete driveway. Nice living & dining area and additional room that could be used for an office or family room. New carpet. Clean and ready to move into! Covered patio area, low maintenance yard.

Represented Seller 1738 Kings Dr, Paso Robles 93446 Both of these well-maintained two bedroom, two bath homes with preferred Cavalier floor plan are located in the desirable 55+ Sierra Bonita community. Features include step-in shower, spacious bedrooms, large living area, home office area, and two-car garage. Enjoy low maintenance landscape, spacious patio area, room for gardening, and mature shade trees! All within minutes from the Starbucks shopping center, Paso Robles Golf Course, Paso Robles Senior Center, Veterans Memorial Center, dog park, and Sherwood Park! Learn more at Sierrabonitavillage.com!

942 Brookhill Drive, Paso Robles 93446 Lovingly maintained, 2 bedroom, 1 bath located in a desirable adult (55+) community known as Sierra Bonita Village. Home is directly across from Turtle Creek Park which includes walking path & mature trees. Upgrades include wood flooring, custom interior paint, and low-maintenance landscape. The backyard has a terraced garden, and enclosed patio off the dining room. Short distance to Senior Center, Veterans Memorial Building, dog park & Paso Robles golf course.


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November 2021

fe at ures

Issue No. 41

17

15 17

Thanksgiving Paso Robles by camille devaul

For 37 years, Thanksgiving for Paso Robles has provided homemade meals for over 1,200 people per year.

Mighty Oaks Warrior Program by camille devaul

The Mighty Oaks Foundation serves those in need by providing intensive peer-based discipleship through a series of programs, outpost meetings, and speaking events.

16 24

Honor, Duty and Love for County by simone smith

After graduating from Atascadero High School in 1997 and a short stint at Cuesta College, Leia had a “nagging feeling to serve the country.”

Specs by Kyla

by patrick patton

Kyla Skinner saw a need in the North County for unique eyewear with attention to customer service, so she brought her vision to Atascadero.

On the Cover

Happy Thanksgiving! Cover inspired by the “Best Pumpkins Pies in the North County” and sharing a meal with the ones you love. File photo 20,000 PRINTED | 17,000 DIRECT MAILED LOCALLY!

3,000 DROPPED AT HIGH TRAFFIC LOCATIONS

Atascadero 93422 • Santa Margarita 93453 • Creston 93432 Hotels • Wineries • B&Bs • Waiting Rooms • Restaurants • High-traffic Visitor Hotspots for advertising inquiries and rates email office @ 13starsmedia.com, or contact one of our advertising representatives.


City of Atascadero presents

2021

DEC. 10th 5-9 PM Sunken Gardens, Downtown Atascadero

W O N S E

E D I L S • Bounce Houses

• Joe’s Little Train • Santa & Mrs. Claus V I S S A • A-Town Park Scooter Demos M N O G N • Live Entertainment • Food & Craft Vendors I D SLED • Snow Pile Areas • Downtown Atascadero

50 TONS OF SNOW! EVENT IS FREE TO THE PUBLIC!

www.VisitAtascadero.com/events


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30

Something Worth Reading Publisher’s Letter

Round Town Atascadero Chamber of Commerce | Cross Talk with Josh Cross The Natural Alternative: Feeling the Burn

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12 13

20

Features Thanksgiving: Pumpkin Pie Veterans Day: Events in the North County

Taste of Atascadero

14

22

Taste of Americana: Cheers to Food, Family & Friends

26

Business Spotlight Lifestyle: Downtown Paso Robles Welcomes House of Moseley 13 Stars Media: Meet the Team

Tent City

30

SLO County Office of Education: Success Stories in the Age of Covid Rick Evans: A Special to the Atascadero News Magazine

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28

Events Calendar of Events: Happenings in the North County

Last Word Atascadero News Magazine Manifesto Directory of our Advertisers

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6 | atascaderomagazine.com

We’re so

Grateful for you.

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021



Something Worth Reading

Publisher’s Letter

A

s we look back over the last 20 months, as hard as it has been, there is so much to be grateful for. Many lessons we learned might have been missed had it not been for the pandemic stopping us in our tracks and the universe asking us to take a moment and pause.

A focus on good health is essential in our lives; daily exercise, organic foods, fresh air, clean water, and meditation heal the soul and spirit, allowing us to hear the needs within. Living on the Central Coast, we have no shortage of places we can go to rejuvenate, with long walks on the beach and multiple hiking and biking trails. This time of year, we take time to reflect on all we have to be grateful for. In November, we honor the sacrifice of so many local men and women who have served our country. We extend a deep appreciation to all veterans for their service and are so grateful for their dedicated commitment to fighting for our freedom.

publisher, editor-in-chief

publisher, editor-at-large

Hayley Mattson

Nicholas Mattson

assistant editor

layout design

Melissa Guerra ad consultants

Michael Michaud ad design

Dana McGraw Jamie Self Jessica Segal

community writers

Jen Rodman

Camille DeVaul Patrick Patton

office administrator

Cami Martin | office@13starsmedia.com

contributors

Barbie Butz

Mira Honeycutt

James Brescia, Ed.D.

The Natural Alternative

Josh Cross

Simone Smith

OUR NEXT ISSUE:

We are excited to share that our 9th annual Best of North SLO County Readers’ Poll is now open! We have more than 100 categories of local businesses, organizations, events, and attractions waiting for you to cast your ballot for the Best of 2021. So be sure to go and cast your vote!

WINTER HOLIDAYS YEAR IN REVIEW December 2021

PUBLICATION DELIVERY DATE November 29, 2021 ADVERTISING DEADLINE* November 10, 2021 * Ad reservation deadline is the 10th of each month preceding the publication. For more information about advertising, upcoming issues and editorial themes, contact our advertising representatives above, or see our media kit at atascaderomagazine.com/advertise

Our company is growing, and for that, we are truly grateful. This month we add a new local publication to our media family, the Central Coast Journal. Tom and Julie Meinhold stewarded the iconic magazine, and we are honored to carry on the over 25-year-old legacy.

ATASCADEROMAGAZINE.COM office@13starsmedia.com • (805) 466-2585

We could not do any of this without our incredible team of professionals, and this month, we get to share them all with you! On page 26, we asked our team a few questions so that you could get to know the team behind the magic of the magazine. We are truly blessed to have each and every one of them dedicated to our mission, to you, and our community. As 2021 nears its end, we are deeply grateful for the local businesses who continue to advertise, as well as all our community members who read and share our publications. Please be sure to visit them all this holiday season and let them know you saw them in the magazine. From all of us here at 13 Stars Media, we wish you a very happy and healthy Thanksgiving. We hope you enjoy this month’s issue of Atascadero News Magazine. Hayley & Nic

OFFICE 5860 El Camino Real Ste G, Atascadero, Ca 93422

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Commentary reflects the views of the writers and does not necessarily reflect those of Atascadero News Magazine. Atascadero News Magazine is delivered free to 17,000 addresses in North San Luis Obispo County. Our costs are paid entirely by advertising revenue. Our Local Business section spotlights select advertisers. All other stories are determined solely by our editors.

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Atascadero News Magazine ©2021 is a local business owned and published by local people — Nicholas & Hayley Mattson No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form by any means without written consent from Atascadero News Magazine.

if thou wouldest win immortality of name, either do things worth the writing, or write things worth the reading. — Thomas Fuller, 1727

This month’s edition of Atascadero News Magazine is brought to you by all the local advertisers that fill our pages. Thanks to them, we are able to bring you your local Hometown Magazine.

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Round Town

Chamber of Commerce

New Chamber Members

talk

W I T H

J O S H

C R O S S

CEO/President | Atascadero Chamber of Commerce

THE CHAMBER’S SECRET

To Managing This Holiday Season? Early Local Shopping!

T

he holiday season is here! Lights are coming out, friends and family are gathering over hot cider, and the smell of fresh-baked cookies is in the air. There are so many memories to make with those you hold dear this year. However, the one experience you don’t want is frantically stressing about gifts and shopping days (or hours) before the holiday festivities begin. Trust us; last-minute shopping is a tried and true recipe to becoming a grinch this holiday season. Here are three reasons why you’ll want to shop early and local this year. 1. Enjoy The Holiday with Minimal Stress And Maximum Fun The holiday winter season only happens once a year; wouldn’t you rather spend it playing games with family and friends and enjoying gingerbread cookies and mulled wine? Instead, by waiting until the last minute to go shopping, you may spend some of the best parts of the holiday running around stressed and tired. But, if you go early, you can turn it into a fun all-day event. Pick a holiday shopping weekend! Go out to breakfast with friends, hit the local stores for presents, decorations, and more, then, after you’re done, grab a couple of cocktails to celebrate. Now that sounds like a win-win! 2. Don’t Get Caught Up In The Nationwide Shipping Delays Now more than ever, people are shopping online for the holidays, adding even greater strain to the already currently stressed shipping and delivery system. Delivery delays are a real challenge coming into this holiday season. I know that you don’t want to spend the week before the holidays biting your nails, wondering if the gifts you ordered will get here in time. Instead, try shopping early and locally! Find incredible presents right here in our community – no shipping hassle required (did you know that a lot of local businesses even offer gift wrapping for gifts, it’s a real-time-saver.). 3. Get Unique Gifts Before They’re Gone Local businesses often carry products that you can’t find anywhere else. With a limited supply, you’ll want to shop for these treasures early before they’re gone. Good gifts go fast! So you’ll want to start your shopping sooner rather than later. A little preparation goes a long way this holiday season. Get your holiday shopping checked off your list early this year, so you can spend the holidays making memories with the ones you love. For resources on local shopping, check out our online and local Business Directory at atascaderochamber.org/business-directory/ 

12 | atascaderomagazine.com

• Axis Fiduciary Services axisfiduciary.com

• Harvestly.co harvestly.co

• Behavior Respite in Action behaviorrespite.com

• La Donna’s Dinner House & Cocktail Lounge ladonnasrestaurante.com

• C.D.M Enterprises L.L.C thegreatescapeadventure.com • Criu Hospitality Professionals criuhospitality.com • Elevate Fitness & Massage emovebetter.com

• Linda Hamilton, CPA ljhamiltoncpa.com • Oracle oracleatascaderoca.com • Saunter Yoga Studio saunteryogastudio.com

• Family Chiropractic- Craig Beuttler beuttlerchiropractic.com

• Zenovia Cooks, Keller Williams Realty Central Coast zenoviacooks.kw.com

Upcoming Events To Register: Visit AtascaderoChamber.org or call (805)466-2044 Chamber Mixer November 17 Templeton Tennis Ranch | 5:30 - 7:30 pm

G

et ready to connect with other local businesses at our November Chamber Mixer! This is your chance to meet other incredible businesses in our community this holiday season. Drinks and bites will be available to enjoy during the event. Tickets for the mixer are complimentary, and everyone is welcome to attend! Early registration is encouraged. Register at AtascaderoChamber.org. Art, Wine, and Brew - Light Up The Downtown! December 3 Downtown Atascadero | 5:30 - 8:00 p.m.

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et into the cheerful holiday spirit with Art, Wine & Brew Tour - Light Up The Downtown! Sip and shop your way through beautifully decorated downtown stores lit up to celebrate the holiday season. Enjoy some phenomenal wine, beer, coffee, and other treats from 15 – 20 businesses (it’s one of our favorite ways to go shopping for Christmas gifts!). Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door; every ticket comes with a complimentary wine glass. Go to the booth in front of City Hall or Central Coast Distillery on the day of the event to claim your wine glass and wristband for tasting. Atascadero Lakeside Wine Passport Ends December 31

F

or only $50, you can enjoy complimentary tastings, one per location, at eighteen wineries, four breweries, two distilleries, and one cidery. You will also receive complimentary corkage fees at participating restaurants and discounts on local hotel stays. A portion of the proceeds will help support the Atascadero Charles Paddock Zoo. In addition, those that visit all participating tasting locations and complete their passport can submit it to the Atascadero Chamber of Commerce for a 25 percent discount coupon for 2022’s in-person Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival! Purchase your passport at atascaderolakesidewinefestival.com. Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


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A

Feeling The

re you suffering from heartburn and reaching for an over-the-counter antacid or prescription acid blocker on a daily basis? Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD, otherwise known as heartburn, is typically treated with a class of drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) or over-the-counter medications known as “antacids.” So, what’s wrong with that...... Too Little Stomach Acid? It is reported that over 90 percent of people with “acid indigestion” are not making too much stomach acid, but too little stomach acid, i.e., hypochlorhydria. Symptoms include bloating, belching, gas, indigestion, diarrhea, or constipation. Not pleasant! Stomach acid not only plays a critical role in digestion but also helps to protect you from food poisoning, H. pylori, and many other infections. In addition, in a Dutch study of more than 300,000 patients, it was found that users of heartburn and ulcer drugs such as Nexium, Pepcid, and Prilosec faced almost double risk of developing pneumonia after nearly three years of use. As stomach acid (HCL) is needed to not only break down proteins but also absorb nutrients (esp. calcium, iron, zinc, B12), taking PPIs long term is linked to osteoporosis, anemia, increased risk of fracture, kidney problems, and dementia. A study published in JAMA Neurology reported that the

BURN

reduction of B12 caused by these drugs leaves the brain vulnerable to damage. (Ref.: Scientific American /Weintraub 2/1/17)

A Better Way. Enhance digestion – don’t disable it! If you suffer from occasional heartburn and acid indigestion, I would first advise discussing this with your health care professional. If digestive enzymes are recommended, let us help you choose a formula that is best suited for you. Herbs such as marshmallow, slippery elm, and aloe have soothing properties, while either plantbased enzymes or HCL & pepsin may assist with efficient digestion of protein, fats, and carbohydrates. Support the body’s natural processes rather than suppress enzyme activity, and your gut will thank you for it! An 80 yr old customer was suffering from acid indigestion and refusing to take PPIs, knowing the side effects. After discussing her dilemma with Nick (favorite team member), she chose Acid Ease and DGL to support her digestion. She returned 4 days later to give Nick a big hug and thank him as her digestive problems completely resolved! Stop by The Natural Alternative and let our friendly staff assist you in finding the right digestive support for you. Find out “what better feels like!” Bobbi & The Team @ Natural Alternative

THE INFORMATION CONTAINED HEREIN IS FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE DIAGNOSIS, PRESCRIPTION OR TREATMENT AND IS NOT INTENDED TO BE USED AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR MEDICAL COUNSELING WITH A HEALTH PROFESSIONAL.

Sue Gibson, CSA, MBA (415) 656-6869 sue@slgseniorcare.com www.SLGSeniorCare.com

FREE PLACEMENT SERVICE

SLG

Senior C are

ASSISTED LIVING  MEMORY CARE  RESIDENTIAL CARE HOMES

November 2021 | Atascadero News Magazine

atascaderomagazine.com | 13


Pumpkin Pie

...and where to find the best that the North County has to offer!

By Camille DeVaul

I

think it is safe to say the pumpkin has earned a special place in Americans’ hearts. In fact, America’s history with pumpkins dates back to at least the 16th century, when it was one of the first foods brought back from the New World. We love the gourd so much we have found a way to put it in everything from body lotion to our coffee. But, the pumpkin pie will always remain at the center of our pumpkin obsessed hearts. Some of the earliest pumpkin pies dated back to the early 1600s and were made with stewed pumpkin or by filling a hollowed-out shell with cream, honey, and spices then baked in hot ashes. How we became so obsessed with everything pumpkin is unknown, but I have a feeling it is because we have a lot in common with the gourds. We, like the pumpkins, come in all shapes, sizes, and colors--and we are all delicious. Luckily, we have plenty of options here in North County to fulfill our spiced pumpkin cravings this Fall. The perfect pie will make for a very flavorful Thanksgiving! 

14 | atascaderomagazine.com

ATASCADERO • A-Town Diner • Call to place order (805)461-8181 • facebook.com/myatown • A-Town Humble Pies • Signature Pumpkin Pie, Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Tart, and Signature Pumpkin with Mascarpone and Honey Swirl • Gluten-Free and Vegan options are available • Available at all North County Farmers Markets or order online atownhumblepies.com or call (805)792-4310

PASO ROBLES • Bless Your Heart Bakery • Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pie • Call (805)227-4969 and order two days in advance or order online at blessyourheartbaking. com

• Cider Creek Bakery & Deli • Traditional Pumpkin Pie and many TEMPLETON • Bramble Pie Company others • Signature Pumpkin Pie made with • Pre-orders can be placed through • Chulo’s Cafe & Cantina • Call to pre-order all local ingredients and served November 21 (805)434-3044 or visit with homemade whipped cream • Call (805)238-4144 or visit online chuloscafecantina.com • Special order online at cidercreekbakery.com bramblepiecompany.com or call • Negranti Creamery • Just Baked Cake Studio & Bakery (805)460-6294 • Call to pre-order (805)801-3847 • Perfect Pumpkin Pie or visit negranticreamery.com • Guest House Grill • Limited availability of Gluten• Call to pre-order (805)460-0193 Free pie • Templeton Donuts Plus or visit guesthousegrill.com • Pre-order for Thanksgiving online • Special Order by calling at justbakedslo.com, first come, (805)434-0226 • Nautical Cowboy first serve, and limited availability • facebook.com/Templeton• Call to pre-order (805)461-5100 in the shop Donuts-Plus or visit nauticalcowboy.com Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


Thanksgiving Paso Robles

Returns With Sitdown Meals For 37th Anniversary

By Camille DeVaul

F

or 37 years, Thanksgiving for Paso six years, I was the turkey carver. I would Robles has provided homemade carve 20 to 28 turkeys a year—I’m a darn meals for over 1,200 people per good turkey carver.” year. Now, David serves as the Thanksgiving In 2020, Thanksgiving for Paso Robles for Paso Robles chairman and doubles as kept its promise to provide Thanksgiving a captain for the Pioneer Day Bean Feed. dinner to those in need. However, due to Thanksgiving for Paso Robles is 100 COVID restrictions, volunteers created percent funded by donations and run by take-out meals and delivered them to the volunteers. It takes approximately $9,000 community rather than their traditional and 200 volunteers to put on the annual sit-down dinner. dinner. Given challenging circumstances from Volunteers begin prepping and cookthe past two years, Chairman David ing the meals on Monday and are ready Kudija says they are preparing to make to serve almost 2,000 people by Thursday. 1,500 meals—300 more than usual. This year there will be 70 turkeys and Thanksgiving for Paso Robles was hams cooked for the community. started when Mildred Wilkens wanted Volunteers are needed this year more to prove she could create a one-day than ever. Kudija says they are always restaurant. Ten years later, she stepped in need of volunteers to help clean up down due to her declining health, and the dinner. community continued what she started. Kudija explains the operation as a David began volunteering about one-day restaurant. Everything is set up, 27 years ago. He laughs, saying, “I got served, and then taken down all in one involved because I wanted to become day. It is a lot of work, but when speakgreat at carving turkeys, and for about ing to Kudija, it sounds pretty worth it.

Wishing our Community Happy, Healthy and Safe Holiday Season! T

AS CO L A

TR CEN RES TO R

CA

SU ALT

Y

The traditional sit-down meal is complete with fine china, table cloths, and plenty of good company. “It’s fulfilling work—I’ve met a lot of great people doing this. We try to keep it fun,” David shared. This years dinner menu includes: • Oven Roasted Turkey • Ham • Rolls • • Mashed Potatoes & Gravy Dressing • • Green Beans • Candied Yams • • Cranberry Sauce • Housebaked Pies • Guests have an option to enjoy a sit-down meal, or if coming down to the park is not an option, volunteers are more than happy to deliver a meal to them. Thanksgiving for Paso Robles is a “celebration of thanks serving over 1,500 men, women, and children from all communities, a traditional Thanksgiving meal at no cost. A true expression of community that brings diverse people together to share the day with others. All made possible through the generosity of caring individuals, students, organizations, churches, and businesses.” 

N

DELIVERY For those who are homebound, they have volunteers to deliver a warm Thanksgiving meal. Call the committee at (805)239-4137 by November 19 to schedule a delivery.

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Simone Smith

SANTA MARGARITA TO AL TAQADDUM AND BACK

A

ll the training and testing had taken place, she had given her all, fighting against the odds and despite the naysayers who told her she would never make it. Everything in her life had led up to this very moment as HMLA-775 (Marine Light Helicopter Attack Squadron 775) landed at the Al Asad Air Base in Iraq under the cover of darkness. “It was the most surreal moment of my life, like watching a movie,” said Leia Larson, activated and deployed as a Huey Crew Chief and Door Gunner after September 11, 2001, as part of OIF (Operation Iraqi Freedom). “I’ll never forget being hit by the dry, unfamiliar scent of the desert when we first arrived and being rushed into the Intake Tent, with the sound of machine-gun fire and tracers lighting up the sky.” This was the beginning of what would become two tours of active duty in Iraq during OIF II and OIF III for Leia Larson and what she had dreamed of since being a little girl in Santa Margarita. Growing up as the youngest of 5 to older parents, Leia Larson loved listening to her father tell stories. As a Polio survivor, John Larson served in the Civil Air Patrol during WWII, later becoming an avid WWII historian, and although he didn’t have formal school training, was a brilliant Design Draftsman for the Aerospace industry designing parts that are used to this day. Leia went to every Air Show with her dad and remembers one show in particular when, afterward, a pilot asked if she wanted to sit in the cockpit of his F4 Phantom, she was overwhelmed by all the instruments and complexity, but it was at that moment, at the age of four, that she decided she wanted to fly. Leia still has the Honorary US Navy Aircrewman certificate with wings that she received on that day. The pull to serve her country seems to be in Leia’s blood, being surrounded by cousins and relatives in the Marine Corps, with her Uncle serving in Korea. Although Leia had a dream of being the first female Blue Angel Pilot, she said she would often steal one of her brother’s t-shirts, it was her favorite, with a picture of a Huey helicopter, who knew that years later that little girl would become a Huey Crew Chief “I loved that shirt and still have it!” she said. After graduating from Atascadero High School in 1997 and a short stint at Cuesta College, Leia had a “nagging feeling to serve the country.” She had scored high on the ASVAB test and had been talking to recruiters since 1999 when a reserve position came up for a Huey Crew Chief and Door Gunner, that was it, the exact position that she wanted, “a position where I felt I could make a difference and not in the rear with the gear,” she wanted to be part of the action. They said as a female she would fail, but Leia enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2000 and proceeded to pass ALL the training and testing, no bars lowered, to become 6174, UH-1N Huey Crew Chief/Door Gunner as well as becoming Dual Qualified Plane Captain on Hueys and the AH-1W Cobra.

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It was on September 11, 2001, during Flight School at NAS Pensacola, Florida, when she and her schoolmates crowded into a breakroom, watching, shocked as events unfolded live on TV that she knew their lives had forever changed and they would be headed to war. Sure enough, just under a year after completing all Flight School training, her squadron got recalled to active duty and deployed directly to the Suni Triangle in Iraq in early Spring of 2004. Leia said that her experience was “a lot of fun but a lot of hell,” and while there, she fell in love with the people of the country, and it all became about them. She’ll never forget the little girls, mothers, and brothers that she met and thinks of them often, hoping they’re okay. After two tours of duty, the hardest thing was returning home and being dropped right back into civilian life. She was terrified that after serving, they would be poorly treated like the Vietnam Vets but were happily met with thanks and gratitude by her fellow Americans. When asked what she thought would be the best way to honor our country’s Veterans, Leia said, “Take the time to attend Veterans Day and Memorial Day ceremonies, bring your children and teach them to sit quietly and listen to the stories. Our WWII Veterans are quickly passing and with them go their stories and wealth of knowledge. Go up to these old guys, say hello, give them a hug, thank them for their sacrifice to our country, listen to them and learn why.”

Leia Larson enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2000. Contributed photos

These are men like Santa Margarita’s WWII Centenarians, Henry Barba, now 108 years old who served in Alaska as a member of The National Guards Searchlight Battalion—250th Coastal Artillery, Battery G; and Harold Lowe, now 102 years old who served in WWII as a soldier in the US Army with the 162nd Infantry deployed to Australia and later to New Guinea. “Also,” Leia continued, “learn about the tradition and set up a POW/MIA Table to honor and remember our prisoners of war and those who have gone missing in combat.” Thank you, Leia, and all others who have made a personal sacrifice for the greater good of our country; we owe you a debt of gratitude and respect.  Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


Mighty Oaks Warrior Program Serving U.S. O Veterans Suffering With PTSD By Camille DeVaul

n November 11, 1918, at 11 a.m., the world celebrated the end of World War I, which would be later known as Armistice Day. The day the world thought would be the end of the war to end all wars would become a national holiday in 1938. Later in 1954, November 11 was proclaimed Veteran’s Day to honor all Veterans. We know now that WWI was not the war to end all wars. And even when soldiers do come home, their war isn’t always over. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was first used as a diagnostic term in 1980. Prior to that, symptoms of PTSD were known as “shell shock.” Since then, PTSD has been prevalent among 13.8 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. According to the U.S. Department of Veteran affairs:

Help Is Just Around the Corner!

• Operations Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Enduring Freedom (OEF): About 11-20 percent who served in OIF or OEF have PTSD in a given year. • Gulf War (Desert Storm): About 12 out of every 100 Gulf War Veterans (or 12 percent) have PTSD in a given year. • Vietnam War: About 15 out of every 100 Vietnam Veterans (or 15 percent) were currently diagnosed with PTSD at the time of the most recent study in the late 1980s, the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS). It is estimated that about 30 out of every 100 (or 30 percent) of Vietnam Veterans have had PTSD in their lifetime. • The average number of Veteran suicides per day was 17.6 in 2018. Continued on Page 20

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Continued from Page 17

After Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter Chad Robichaux served eight tours of duty as a United States Marine Corps Force Recon, he was diagnosed with PTSD. His diagnosis led him on a journey to create the Mighty Oaks Foundation, a non-profit committed to serving veterans and first responders suffering from PTSD. The Mighty Oaks Foundation is committed to serving the brokenhearted by providing intensive peerbased discipleship through a series of programs, outpost meetings, and speaking events. Mighty Oaks started in Colorado in 2011 and has grown into four locations—including one at the Sky Rose Ranch in Paso Robles. Jamie Warner, the foundations West Coast Regional Facilitator and former USMC Naval Aviator, said, “Our mission is to serve our nation’s warriors and their families who have endured hardships in their service to America whether they are a veteran, active duty or a first responder and help them find new life purpose through hope and Christ through the different programs we offer.” He adds, “We are unashamedly a faith-based program.” There are five programs developed for veterans:

• • • • •

Legacy Program for Men Legacy Program for Women Military Resiliency Programs Marriage Advance Aftercare Sky Rose Ranch has hosted the Mighty Oaks since 2012 and handles mainly the Legacy Program for men and women. According to Warner, the foundation has served over 4,000 veterans since its inception. The Veterans, or Warriors as they are called here, who attend are fully sponsored for training, meals, and lodging needs to ensure that upon arrival to the ranch, each Warrior is focused solely on his or her recovery and identifying purpose moving forward. The Mighty Oaks Warrior programs are privately funded. No one coming to the program will ever have to pay for travel to and from the program or anything while they are there. Warner says, “We try to keep those excuses away. It is completely paid for by donations from Americans who are appreciative of their service—we do what it takes to get them there.” A typical day at the Legacy Program begins with colors, raising and saluting our nation’s flag, and breakfast. Each day is filled with a variety of classes, or presentations, on a wide range of topics. One of the activities Warriors participate in is a horseback ride at the

Work Family Ranch in San Miguel. The Work family has been a proud supporter of the Mighty Oaks since it first came to Paso Robles. “We are faith-based, but we don’t force anything on anyone—this is what works for us,” explained Warner. He continued saying, “We use the Bible as our foundation and walk them through ‘this is why a man needs to fight for the most important things in life, this is what a man of character looks like, a man who has discipline this is what brotherhood should look like.” All the instructors and counselors at Mighty Oaks have gone through the program themselves and are also veterans. “They are carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders—when they arrive, you can see it on their face,” said Warner. He explains how Mighty Oaks is often a last resort for many of the veterans they meet, and there is always an impactful moment to witness. “Oftentimes, you’ll hear guys say, ‘I have a stronger brotherhood now than I ever had in the military, and I didn’t think that was possible.’ I see miraculous changes every single week, and it never ceases to amaze me.” The Mighty Oaks Foundation explains how their programs work the best.

“Our five-day intensive peer-to-peer program serves as the catalyst to help Warriors discover the answers to the big questions in life. Challenges related to the struggles of daily military life, combat deployments and the symptoms of post-traumatic stress (PTS) surface during these five days. Utilizing peer leadership, participants find common ground through shared experiences and understanding, allowing greater potential for growth and recovery within the men. By discovering the truth about discipline, brotherhood, legacy, courage, honor, faith and family, men develop authentic character and learn to live a life of leadership. We equip our Warriors to fight through life’s challenges and discover the very purpose for their lives moving forward.” Warner says as instructors, they witness lives being saved. He says, “My two favorite moments of the week is Monday dinner because it’s quiet. People are forcing conversations. You can tell people are uncomfortable. Then Friday at breakfast, there’s laughter, hugging, there’s talking.” Warner often sees a common misconception coming from civilians and veterans: a veteran experiencing PTSD is broken and damaged. One thing Warner says they try to make clear to veterans is Post Traumatic Stress is not a disorder. Instead, they try to retrain people to understand that post-traumatic stress is a normal reaction to the abnormal and horrific situations that veterans and first responders often find themselves in. To learn more on the Mighty Oaks Foundation or to donate or apply for the program, visit mightyoaksprograms.org.  To all Veterans, we thank you for your courage and dedication to preserve the American freedoms we hold dear. And thank you to the military families for their support, resilience, and sacrifice.

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Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


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Taste

Taste of Americana

From the Kitchen of

Barbie Butz

I

t’s November, a beautiful month in this part of our county. The deciduous trees drop their colorful leaves, and the mighty Oaks drop their acorns, often hitting my car like a bullet as I drive through the country. After we gather and give thanks for our many blessings on Thanksgiving Day, it’s all about food, family, and friends. When it comes to the food, I’ve always noticed that the turkey or the ham is usually traditionally the same, but the “sides” vary, depending on the cook. Magazines at the check-out counter of the grocery store vie for your attention with new recipes for those sides. I remember a Thanksgiving when our daughter-in-law, Shannon, served three different potato dishes and three different vegetable dishes because she just wanted to try the recipes. It was a Thanksgiving buffet to remember, and none of us complained! I have located the following recipes for you to consider adding to your menu this year. If you prefer, a mix of young, tender salad greens can be used in place of watercress, and Bosc pears can stand in for Bartletts in the salad. Be sure to purchase the pears several days ahead and let them ripen a bit on your kitchen counter or near a kitchen window. Mild Gorgonzola can replace the goat cheese. The salad can be plated individually or served from a large bowl. Toss with the vinaigrette just before serving. Enjoy your Thanksgiving. Remember that no matter what you serve, whether it’s hamburgers or turkey, it’s being together with those you love that really counts. A pumpkin pie can’t hurt, though! Cheers! 

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WATERCRESS, PEAR, & GOAT CHEESE SALAD WITH SHERRY VINAIGRETTE Ingredients: • 3 firm, ripe Bartlett pears juice from ½ medium lemon • 2 or 3 bunches watercress, long stems removed (about 8 cups) • ½ cup moist dried pitted sweet cherries

For the Vinaigrette: • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil • 2 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar • ½ teaspoon salt • Ground pepper to taste • 5 ounces mild-aged goat cheese, cut into small pieces

Directions: Peel, halve, and core pears. Cut each half into 4 wedges. As pears are cut, place in a large bowl and sprinkle with lemon juice. Add watercress and cherries. To make vinaigrette, in a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, sherry vinegar, salt, and pepper until blended—drizzle vinaigrette over watercress mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Divide salad evenly among 6 individual plates. Add goat cheese to salads, distributing evenly. Serve immediately. Notes: An easy way to core a pear is to cut it in half and use a rounded metal measuring teaspoon or melon baller to scoop out the core.

BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH PISTACHIOS AND LIME Ingredients: • 2 pounds small brussels sprouts, trimmed • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter • 3 tablespoons raw pistachios

• • • • • •

2 tablespoons date molasses or honey 1 teaspoon honey Zest of ½ lime 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes Lime wedges for serving (optional)

Directions: Place oven rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 450 degrees. Toss brussels sprouts and oil in large bowl to coat; season with salt and pepper. Toast brussels sprouts on rimmed baking sheet 15 minutes, then shake baking sheet to loosen them. Continue to roast until deeply browned all over, 5-10 minutes longer. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and roast another 10 minutes. Shake baking sheet again, then roast brussels sprouts until the tip of a small knife easily slides through, 5-10 minutes longer. Cook-time will be 35-45 minutes. Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. When butter starts to foam, add pistachios and pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often until nuts are golden brown and butter solids are browned about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Use a slotted spoon to transfer nuts to paper towels to cool. Coarsely chop and set aside. Bring date molasses, honey, and lime juice to a simmer in same skillet over medium heat, swirling pan to emulsify. Add 1 tablespoon water and swirl to emulsify, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Add brussels sprouts; toss to coat. Transfer brussels sprouts to a platter. Toss nuts, lime zest, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl to combine; scatter over brussels sprouts. Serve with lime wedges if desired. Notes: Rather than al dente brussels sprouts, this recipe asks that they be well-cooked. Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


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Business Spotlight

A Clear Vision

Specs by Kyla

How Kyla Skinner Made Her Vision A Reality

By Patrick Patton

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K

yla Skinner saw a need in the North County for unique eyewear with attention to customer service. So she started the renovation of her new space in Atascadero, located at 5808 Traffic Way in the El Paseo Plaza, last May. Kyla and her husband Jeff, who is a contractor, did most of the work themselves on the weekends and evenings. Together they refinished the concrete floors, painted, and added a custom light fixture to complement the abundant natural light already present in the space. The high ceilings and industrial concrete floors showcase Kyla’s selection of modern eyewear. “My instinct told me Atascadero is where I belonged. I live here; my kids go to school here. I sensed a fun energy burgeoning forth, and I was excited to be a part of it. I connected with other business owners here in town and felt supported and encouraged,” Kyla explained. Kyla’s goal is not only to help you see better but to accentuate your features and have your eyewear be a stylish accessory. Personalized attention to detail will ensure the frame fits comfortably and allows you to see well. Kyla offers a wide array of independent eyeglass frames and sunglasses. Partnering with HOYA Lab, Kyla uses digitally surfaced lenses that will enable you to see the most naturally and enjoy a clear, wide field of vision. “I have chosen to only carry independent eyewear lines—smaller companies, better quality products, a personal connection to the eyeglass lines I choose to offer,” Kyla shared. “I have been an optician for 22 years, customer service is so important to me, and I really care to help you see clearly and look amazing in your eyewear. I’m a habitual smiler—I want you to feel at home, comfortable and welcome in the space I’ve created.” Skinner, who was raised in Templeton, began working in the optical field immediately after graduating High School. “Putting a pair of glasses on someone’s face and helping them see the leaves on the trees for the first time is the best feeling ever!” Kyla said. “Making sure their frames are comfortable, adjusting them until they are perfect, hearing about the million compliments they’ve received on their eyewear... there is just something so rewarding about it! It is the perfect balance of medical, technical, and fashion. It is never boring or repetitive, everyone’s face and eyes are different, and I love the challenge of finding perfect frames for each individual.” After studying and learning on the job for a couple of years, she earned her optician certification through the American Board of Opticianry in 1999. Skinner moved to North Carolina around 2007 and lived there for three years; during that time, she helped an optometrist open a new practice and gained knowledge on what it takes to start and

own a business. Then, in 2010, her family decided to move back to California as they missed the Central Coast and their family here. “I missed the ocean. I missed home,” Kyla shared. “I grew up in Templeton, and I think I had to move away to fully appreciate how amazing the Central Coast is. I love the rolling hills, the small towns that are each unique and special in their own way, the friendly faces, the oak trees, the lack of traffic, the mild winters, family. I will never leave again!” Upon returning to California’s Central Coast, Kyla worked at an optometrist’s office in San Luis Obispo for more than ten years. She began to entertain the idea of opening her own business in North County. That idea grew into a real possibility after she received the tragic news that her birth mother had passed away in December of 2019 and that her birth family had left her an inheritance. Kyla chose to open the business on July 5, which is also her birthday, as a way to honor her birth mother and the opportunity she was given. “The day I was born was the one day that I know we had together,” Kyla shared. The grand opening of Specs by Kyla was on September 24 and combined with Atascadero’s Art, Wine & Brew event. There was a ribbon cutting, eyewear styling, and wine and appetizers in the courtyard by Forager Central Coast Distillery. “Honesty, when I opened, I expected to hear crickets for the first few months,” Kyla explained, “but I have been absolutely blown away with the support from our community and surrounding areas. People have found me mainly through word of mouth and social media, and it has been so exciting to see things take off! I’m so so grateful for the support from other business owners, the mayor, the chamber of commerce, and people who love unique fun eyewear.” Specs by Kyla is truly a family business. Kyla’s husband Jeff, and her two girls Eden and Tessa help her with the business and have supported her from the beginning. “My girls have each helped me in the shop. My 16-year-old is great at helping people, and my six-year-old loves cleaning the floor for me. They do their homework in the shop loft, and I love having the space for them. My husband helped me with all the grueling hard work of construction, and I hope he can eventually help me expand the business to include cutting lenses in-house. He has an intelligent eye for detail, and I’m excited to grow together.” “The future is bright; grab your sunglasses!” Kyla said with excitement! “Cheesy, but I am excited! Thank you, Atascadero and North County, for being so supportive!”  To find out more about Spec by Kyla visit her online specsbykyla.com. Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


Lifestyle

Left: Robert Moseley and his son George Right: Robert’s wife Alexis and their two sons George & Luke. Contributed photos

Downtown Paso Robles Welcomes By Camille DeVaul

D

House of Moseley

owntown Paso Robles recently welcomed lifestyle and gift store, House of Moseley. Based in Bakersfield, interior designer Robert Moseley has been serving clients on the Central Coast and throughout California for 33 years. His flagship store has been open for over 11 years in its current location. “I consider my clients my friends at the end of the day and feel very fortunate that I’m a part of their lives,” Robert shared. When Robert started looking for a second location, many of his clients begged him to open shop in Paso Robles. He mentions that although Paso Robles is its own entity, the area and its people have many ties to his hometown in Bakersfield. “I’m excited to be a part of the Paso area,” Robert explained. He adds he is looking forward to extending his interior design firm services soon in Paso as well. Robert is looking forward to becoming a part of the Paso Robles community and being known as the place people can go for the perfect gift or addition to their home. As we all know, the holidays are among us—and Robert is ready for them! As a lover of the most wonderful time of year, House of Moseley is stocked with all the essentials to dress your home up for all the holidays. Some of Moseley’s fondest memories revolve around the holidays, “I love the fact that it [holidays] is the time you get to gather with your family and share and be grateful for everything you have.”

As a child, he remembers loving how the stores transformed with the coming holidays. To Robert, interior design should revolve around one’s personal style and livability. He creates spaces for families to feel at home. That’s why he calls House of Moseley a lifestyle store. “It’s not just aesthetic. It has to be livable and breathable, and that it’s able to change over time,” he explains. A favorite product carried in House of Moseley is their candles and fragrances. Like Robert says, “the candles are more than just how they smell—it’s how they make you feel and the memories they bring back.” House of Moseley carries names like Capri Blue, Mariposa, Nest Fragrances, Mackenzie-Childs, and more. They offer unique pieces made with quality, each chosen with care. You can find anything from ornaments, flatware, vases, picture frames, and more. Moseley also offers a bridal registry service. Through their website, customers can browse items they will find in-store or even order for delivery to their homes. House of Moseley is looking to fit in perfectly with the melting pot of downtown Paso Robles. One thing I know for sure is, anyone will be able to find something in Moseley that makes them and their home smile. House of Moseley is located at 840 11th Street, Downtown Paso Robles. Open Daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.  To learn more about House of Moseley, visit houseofmoseley.com.

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Small but Mighty

Meet the Team at Say hello to the fantastic team at 13 Stars Media who, month after month, help to make our communities better through print and quality media coverage! Each valued member represents an integral part of our “Small but Mighty” team. When asked about themselves, each “Mighty Member” came up with responses that perfectly encapsulate their personalities and why we have such a winning team. To learn more about each team member, visit atascaderonews.com

Cami Martin Office Administrator Date of Hire: October 2019

What do you like most about your position? ▷ Getting to learn something new every day from people of all walks of life and being able to tell their stories. What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ With a slow morning and quality time with my husband and dogs and ending with takeout and a cozy night at home.

What do you like about living in SLO County? ▷ I love how much history is packed into this small but impactful County.

Camille DeVaul Date of Hire: December 2019

Advertising Consultant Date of Hire: September 2019

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What’s your favorite joke? ▷ A man makes dad jokes but doesn’t have any kids… what’s he called? A Faux Pas.

Assistant Content Editor

Dana McGraw

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ Lately, I’ve been dabbling in Stained Glass.

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ It starts by getting up early, having a warm cup of coffee on my front porch, then making a meal with my boyfriend while we play our favorite songs and have a dance party just the two of us in the kitchen.

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Listing to a great podcast, either a comedy, true crime (I’m a Murderino at heart if you know, you know!), or a great survival story, getting caught up in a detailed story definitely makes my day better.

What’s your favorite joke? ▷ What is a cow’s favorite newspaper? The Daily Moos

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Coffee!

What do you like most about your position? ▷ Advertising is crucial for all businesses, whether they are just opening their doors or are well established, but also getting the word out for non-profits, events, and new happenings. It’s like having my finger on the pulse of North County.

What do you like most about your position? ▷ I enjoy getting callers excited about a story we’ve covered for the community, or people wanting to submit a tip/editorial piece that can turn into a story the community would love to read about.

What do you like most about your position? ▷ I enjoy building relationships with local, small business owners. I love seeing them out at dinner and school pick-ups or youth sporting events. My success relies solely on their success and their trust in my marketing skills! What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ My days off are usually spent at a sports field watching my kids play or in the middle of nowhere while my son rides his dirt bike! Honestly, that’s my happy place!

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ My kids can usually make my day better! My daughter has a special way of saying ‘I love you, Mommy,’ that just melts my heart. My son, at 13, still wants to spend time with me, so that makes me pretty happy! I also have some pretty awesome fur-babies! Harley is a 4 yr old Boxer/ Pitbull mix, Dexter is a 2 yr old Cane Corso/ Bullmastiff mix (165lbs… YIKES), and Kitty is a 16yr old cat that we rescued from a pavement hopper.

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ An unexpected kindness from a stranger. What’s your favorite joke? ▷ A Man showed up for a duel armed only with a pencil and paper. He then proceeded to draw his weapon. What do you like about living in SLO County? ▷ Every corner of this country offers a completely different experience. I’ve never been anywhere else like here.

Jamie Self Advertising Consultant Date of Hire: May 2007

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


What do you like most about your position? ▷ Ad designing gives me the creativity freedom with the variety of advertisers we have in all our publications to help local businesses on our Central Coast. What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ Trail riding in our jeep or relaxing on the beach.

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Finding lost money in a jacket pocket What’s your favorite joke? ▷ What concert costs just 45 cents? 50 Cent featuring Nickelback!

Jen Rodman Ad Graphic Designer Date of Hire: December 2019

Jessica Segal Advertising Consultant

What do you like most about your position? ▷ Building long-lasting relationships with my clients while being a community resource. What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ Exploring or relaxing at home with my son, William, and Silver Lab, Jackson. What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Hearing my son say, “I love you, you’re a good mom,” or a nice glass of wine.

What’s your favorite joke? ▷ I’m not really a good source for jokes, but I think this one is pretty great: When you look for something, why is it always in the last place you look? Because when you find it, you stop looking! What do you like about living in SLO County? ▷ The slow-paced lifestyle and all the beautiful people and places our County has to offer.

Date of Hire: April 2021

What do you like most about your position? ▷ I love being connected to the community events and aware of what is going on. Sitting in on City calls and hearing residents express their issues, and understanding what’s happening is so important to maintain our community as we grow. What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ Working on home renovation projects, learning new skills, and sometimes learning that I have a lot left to learn.

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Just one thing?? A good song on the radio with the music up loud. Also, a clean kitchen in the morning, fuzzy socks on a cold day, and bubbly water just all day every day. What’s your favorite joke? ▷ When does a joke become a “dad” joke? When it becomes apparent.

Layout Design Editor Date of Hire: January 2020

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ With my wife and two kids, whether we’re at the beach, at the soccer field, on a hike, or just spending a day at home working on projects or watching a movie together.

Assistant Editor Date of Hire: January 2021

Mike Michaud What do you like most about your position? ▷ I’ve become more involved with the community than ever been before, and I’ve acquired a broader understanding of the different facets of our community.

Melissa Guerra

What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Both of my kids and my wife all have a pretty sophisticated sense of humor, so it’s not unusual for one of their offhand and witty comments to catch me off guard, crack me to pieces, and instantly brighten my day. That typically results in the other thing that is sure to instantly make my day better: my wife’s contagious laughter and beautiful smile.

November 2021 | Atascadero News Magazine

What do you like most about your position? ▷ There are a wonderful variety of publications that we produce at 13 Stars Media— from newspapers and magazines, to special projects like the Mid-State Fair program and Restaurant Guides. Each one provides its own set of challenges, but also a certain level of creative freedom that allows me to make something cool, different, and with a wow factor that keeps readers coming back.

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off? ▷ Playing a round or two of disc golf with some buddies. What's one thing that can instantly make your day better? ▷ Two things actually: good coffee and a SLODOCO donut (or three). What’s your favorite joke? ▷ Why are most artists struggling with finances? Because they have no Monet.

Patrick Patton Freelance Writer/Reporter Date of Hire: June 2021

atascaderomagazine.com | 27


Tent City • San Luis Obispo County Office of Education You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS guy who’ ll decide where to go. ~ Dr. Seuss

James Brescia, Ed.D.

O

ver the past 20 pressure-filled months, I reviewed multiple articles, plans, and reports about the impact of COVID-19 on instruction. I have personally observed education employees across San Luis Obispo County skillfully managing responsibilities under extraordinary circumstances. The positive attitude and actions of students, teachers, support staff, families, and the community reminded me again of our many blessings. Here are a few stories highlighting those blessings in the form of takeaways about distance learning improving in-person practices. “We found it difficult to maintain our train of thought with so many student interruptions online.” Adapting to distance learning was an adjustment, and some students were not comfortable turning on their cameras. Initially, some did not turn on their microphones either. With teacher and support staff encouragement, the students activated their mics and cameras. Slowly, more students joined in and began to show their personalities. In a very short time, the instructional team experienced chaos with students talking simultaneously. The answer to the dilemma came in the form of a chat room or organized routine. The teacher explained the concept to the classes and set up procedures to follow (similar to an in-person classroom). By applying the chat room concept, the students could pose questions for the whole class or submit a question privately for the teacher. The chat room option meant that lessons could flow more smoothly. The use of chat rooms reminded the team about the importance of classroom management procedures for in-person instruction. When in-person services began this fall, the team used the initial days to practice procedures and intentionally reviewed these as new students joined their classes. This middle school team in this example revealed that one of their favorite influences was 7 Tips for Breakout Room Success, by Stephanie Rothstein. “Finding a personal and professional balance in presenting yourself to your students.” This classroom quote describes the realization that educators must maintain a certain professional distance while at the same time personally relating to their students. Checking on students via Zoom or Google Meets provided a visual cue and opened up the personal lives of

those connecting from homes. The cute dog in the background is charming to some and distracting to others. Should we have our laundry that needs attention visible while teaching online? Over the years, I have observed many types of classrooms and learning environments, some tidy, others cluttered. It is vital to remember that school should remain a professional environment with a personal feeling tone. Most child and adolescent development courses stress the importance relationships play in successful classrooms. The teacher, in this instance, reflected on the lesson learned during her pre-teaching days: “It’s all about relationships!” We need to interact with our students in a personal way, sharing information and asking questions about interests while at the same time maintaining a professional frame. Over time comfort levels will improve, and student interactions will grow. This educator stressed the importance of social-emotional learning by starting lessons with a positive message. “Virtual teaching reminded me of the power a positive tone and attitude hold in shaping a lesson.” Learning environments that are personal and professional directly benefit students. This classroom continues the virtual practice of having students recite “Optimistic Closures” (a method of sharing something they learned) now that they are back in person. “I felt so relieved when I realized that I wasn’t the only one who felt like I did.” When we commit to a meaningful conversation about our challenges and opportunities with our peers, we can better serve our students. To that end, we must continue to support each other and join together as one community. It is easy to allow negative thoughts and feelings to creep into our heads. Mental health experts remind us that focusing on the positive in our lives can help filter out the constant barrages of discouraging news. Promoting a positive mindset will assist in providing an effective support system. Support systems are more than simple “do-it-yourself ” projects. Our family, friends, community, and colleagues all represent pieces of a support network. Winston Churchill was quoted during World War II as saying, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” When we look for opportunities during difficulty, we can improve our situation and that of others. As illustrated in the stories above, the challenges and confusion that surrounded distance learning were overwhelming to some and celebrated by others. I reviewed reports of loneliness, discouragement, and anxiety alongside requests for additional virtual learning. When educators and school leaders begin sharing these challenges and opportunities, we will address the new normal. The daily, weekly, and monthly professional collaboration thrust upon us by COVID-19 is a practice that will benefit a post-pandemic workplace. When we share “truth-telling” with colleagues, we allow others to assist and support our challenges. These are just a few of the success stories we can learn from as we move forward. I am very proud of our schools and consider it an honor to serve as your county superintendent of schools. 

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Service ∙ Sales ∙ Installation Proudly serving all of the San Luis Obispo County

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28 | atascaderomagazine.com

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


Happy Holidays

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A Special to Atascadero News Magazine

2021 Atascadero Cornhole Tournament.

91st Annual Pioneer Day Parade.

Atascadero Colony Days Parade.

30 | atascaderomagazine.com

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


Calendar of

Events

EVENTS NOVEMBER

DUE TO COVID-19 ALL EVENTS ARE TENTATIVE AND THEIR DATES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE.

NOV. 5 - 7 PADEREWSKI FESTIVAL PASO ROBLES DETAILS: The Paderewski Festival is a four-day music festival celebrating Paso Robles’ rich heritage and its most famous resident Ignacy Jan Paderewski. Registration and info online at paderewskifest. com or by calling (805) 235-5409.

Stay up on all the events and happenings in North San Luis Obispo County! SUBMIT UPCOMING EVENTS TO: office@13starsmedia.com

NOV. 6

CENTRAL COAST WEAVERS GUILD’S 14TH ANNUAL SALE & SHOWCASE

ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY DAY

9156 SANTA MARGARITA RD., ATASCADERO

9100 MORRO RD., ATASCADERO

TIME: 5 : 12-7p | 6 : 10a-4p | 7 : 10a-3p DETAILS: Handwoven clothing, household items, gifts for sale. Demonstrations of weaving and spinning throughout the show.

TIME: 10a-4p DETAILS: Bring valid military ID and all immediate families receive free entry.

th

th

NOV. 11*

th

NOV. 12 - 13

AT THE CHARLES PADDOCK ZOO

NOV. 13

VETERAN’S DAY AT

VETERAN’S DAY AT

AVENUE OF FLAGS

GARAGISTE WINE FESTIVAL

HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE SHOPPING

8024 PORTOLA RD., ATASCADERO

PASO ROBLES DISTRICT CEMETERY

PASO ROBLES FAIRGROUNDS

PAVILION ON THE LAKE, ATASCADERO

TIME: 11a DETAILS: Pay tribute to those who have served and put themselves in harm’s way to protect and defend our nation at the Atascadero Veterans Memorial.

TIME: 8a-3p DETAILS: View the Avenue of Flags & American flags placed at each Veterans Grave tradition. The Annual Veteran’s Day program is canceled.

INFO: GARAGISTEFESTIVAL.COM DETAILS: A three day of event, including new wineries, live music,etc. Tickets: my805tix.com/e/10th-annualpaso-garagiste-wine-festival

TIME: 10a-3p DETAILS: Get a head start on holiday shopping at this one-day craft show where all the items are handmade! For more info call (805) 470-3178.

NOV. 19 - 21

NOV. 25

NOV. 26

THE FACES OF FREEDOM

NOV. 27

ATASCADERO FALL FESTIVAL 2021

37TH ANNUAL THANKSGIVING FOR PASO ROBLES

DOWNTOWN LIGHTING CEREMONY

SHOP SMALL SATURDAY

SUNKEN GARDENS, ATASCADERO

ST. ROSE CHURCH ON CRESTON RD.

DOWNTOWN PASO ROBLES

TIME: 19th: 4-10p | 20th -21st: 11a-10p DETAILS: A 3-day family-friendly event with FREE admission. Carnival rides, games, street fair vendors and food trucks, and bands playing 2 stages!

TIME: 11a-2p DETAILS: Free Thanksgiving meals provided by drive-thru or delivery. Pickup dinners provided while supplies last. Call (805) 239-4137 by Nov 19.

DOWNTOWN CITY PARK (11TH & SPRING) TIME: 5:30p DETAILS: Community candlelight caroling, refreshments with Mrs. Claus, the Grinch and Santa’s Elves.

TIME: All Day DETAILS: Support local businesses on Shop Small Saturday, November 27, 2021, all day in Downtown Paso Robles.

* THE ANNUAL VETERAN’S DAY PROGRAM AT THE PASO ROBLES DISTRICT CEMETERY HAS BEEN CANCELED DUE TO COVID -19. November 2021 | Atascadero News Magazine

atascaderomagazine.com | 31


Community Services

At the Library

Business & Networking

6290 Adams St.,• (805) 237-3010

Santa Margarita Library

atascaderochamber.org • (805) 466-2044 6907 El Camino Real, Suite A, Atascadero, CA 93422

9630 Murphy Ave • (805) 438-5622

Templeton Chamber of Commerce

San Miguel Library

templetonchamber.com • (805) 434-1789 321 S. Main Street #C, Templeton, CA 93465

Creston Library

Atascadero Chamber of Commerce

254 13th St. (805) 467-3224

Shandon Library 195 N 2nd St. • (805) 237-3009

Atascadero Library 6555 Capistrano • (805) 461-6161 • Register online at slolibrary.org • Beanstack Reading Challenge for Families: The Skin You Live In • The month of November • Parent Place: Learn to the Music with Nathalia (in English and Spanish) • Wednesdays, Nov. 3 & 10 @ 10:30a • Chumash and Tataviam Stories • Friday, Nov. 5 @ 10:30a • You can do it! A Guide to Talking to Kids about Race • Monday, Nov. 8 @ 6:00p • Who Saved the Redwoods? • Tuesday, Nov. 9 @ 12:00p • Redesign Your Mind with Dr. Eric Maisel • Tuesday, Nov. 9 @ 1:00p • Difficult Conversations: A Guide to Talking to Teens about Race • Tuesday, Nov. 9 @ 6:00p • Missions and the California Indians: The First Colonizers • Tuesday, Nov. 16 @ 10:00a • DIY Demo - Candle Making • Saturday, Nov. 20 @ 4:00p • Teen Virtual Games on Jackbox Games • Saturday, Nov. 27 @ 4:00p • Ongoing Programs • Live Zoom Storytime | Thursdays @ 10:30a • Teen Advisory Board Meetings | Nov. 13 @ 3:30p • Monthly Book Groups • Nov. 10 @ 10:00a • Nov. 12 @ 12:00p • Nov. 18 @ 2:30p • Nov. 19 @ 10:00a • Nov. 23 @ 3:00p

Health & Wellness

Cancer Support Community Providing support, education and hope 1051 Las Tablas Road, Templeton • (805) 238-4411 • cscslo.org Cancer Support Helpline • (888) 793-9355, 6 a.m.- 6 p.m. PST. Special Programs

Email programs@cscslo.org for zoom links

• Every Wednesday • Tai Chi Chih | Virtual • 10:00 - 11:00a • Mindfulness Hour | Virtual • 11:30a - 12:30a • 1st & 3rd Wednesday of each month • Grief Support Group | Virtual • 1:30p - 2:30p • 1st Thursday of each month • Breast Cancer Support Group | Virtual • 11:00a - 12:00p

Service Organizations Lions Club

Atascadero Club 2385 • 5035 Palma Ave. Atascadero • Meeting — Every 2nd, 4th Wednesday at 7p Santa Margarita Club 2418 • 9610 Murphy St. • Meeting — 2nd, 4th Monday, 7:30p Shandon Valley Club • (630) 571-5466 • Meeting — Call ahead for meeting times Templeton Club 2427 • 601 Main St. • Meeting — 1st and 3rd Thursday, 7p

Ongoing Monthly Events Every Tuesday

Every Wednesday

Every Saturday

PASO ROBLES FARMERS MARKET

ATASCADERO FARMERS MARKET

TEMPLETON FARMERS MARKET

11TH & SPRING

ATASCADERO SUNKEN GARDENS

6TH & CROCKER

TIME: 9:00 - 11:30a

TIME: 3:00 - 6:00p

TIME: 9:00a - 12:30p

(Nov. 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th)

32 | atascaderomagazine.com

• 2nd & 4th Wednesday of each month • Adv. Cancer Support Group | Virtual • 10:00 - 11:00a • 2nd Tuesday of each month • Young Survivor Support Group | Hybrid • 6:00 - 7:30p • 2nd Wednesday of each month • Caregiver Support Group | Virtual • 10:00 - 11:00a • 2nd Thursday of each month • Cancer Patient Support Group | Virtual • 11:00a - 12:00p

(Nov. 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th)

(Nov. 6th, 13th, 20th, 27th)

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021


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atascaderomagazine.com | 33


Last Word

We believe in

holding the door, smiling, waving, and greeting strangers as

new friends. We believe in people. We believe in partnerships. We believe in getting it right, the first time, every time. We believe to change anything, create a new model that makes the old model obsolete. We believe in organic food, a healthy planet, and doing our part to preserve it. We believe handshakes and hugs are better than likes and shares. We believe in the magic of teamwork, hard work, and high fives. We believe that all ideas are big ideas when they matter to you.

Atascadero News Magazine Manifesto

We believe Main Street is more powerful than Wall Street.

adopted 2018

We believe in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We believe in family, friends, and sharing warm bread. We believe everything looks better on high-gloss pages. We believe in homemade lemonade and local honey. We believe in art, music, sports, education, and kids. We believe culture eats strategy for breakfast. We believe small business is a state of mind. We believe in lighting each other’s candles. We believe in our history, and our future. We believe in being the most fun. We believe in the Story of Us. 76 Gas Station.................................. 33 A Heavenly Home............................ 23 American Barn & Wood.................... 17 American West Tire & Auto.........17, 21 Birch Fabrics.........................................9 Blake’s True Value............................. 17 Brad’s Overhead Doors.................... 21 Central Coast Casualty Restoration.. 15

City of Atascadero................................5 Coast to Coast Pest control............... 23 Deep Steam Carpet and Upholstery Cleaners................. 15 Diane Cassidy - Re/Max Success.........2 Educated Gardener.......................... 33 Five Star Rain Gutters....................... 23 Frontier Floors................................... 13

34 | atascaderomagazine.com

DIRECTORY TO OUR ADVERTISERS Atascadero News Magazine is brought to you by Greg Malik Real Estate Group....10, 11 Hearing Aid Specialists of The Central Coast.............................3 Hedges Insurance............................ 36 House of Moseley............................ 29

John Donovan Insurance & Financial Services, Inc.. 33 Juice Boss......................................... 25 Kenneth’s Heating & Air................... 28 Nick’s Painting.................................. 23

Thank you for being #atascaderostrong

North County Pilates........................ 25 O’Conner Pest Control...................... 33 Odyssey World Cafe......................... 28 Optometric Care Associates................9 Robert Fry M.D.................................. 33 Robert Hall Winery..............................7 San Luis Obispo County Office of Education........................... 29

Sierra Pacific Materials..................... 17 SLG Senior Care................................ 13 Solarponics....................................... 29 Specs by Kyla.................................... 21 The Human Bean............................. 23 The Natural Alternative..................... 13 Upbeats & Accents............................ 33 Writing Support Group.................... 33

Atascadero News Magazine | November 2021



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