Colony Magazine #23 • May 2020

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Something Worth Reading Publisher’s Letter

Round Town Colony Buzz: #StrongerTogether Santa Margarita: Tourism at Home Creston: Creston Makes a Splash


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publisher, editor-in-chief

Nicholas Mattson

layout design

Colony People Look Up and Smile: Local Skywriter Gives Us a Friendly Reminder

Local Business Shop Entrada: Farron Elizabeth Shop Entrada: Mother’s Day Natural Alternative: Got Allergies?

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Hayley Mattson

Michael Michaud


publisher, operations

ad design

Denise Mclean Jen Rodman ad consultants

Carmen Kessler | Dana Mcgraw | Jamie Self |

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Cami Martin |

Tent City LEGO® Masters: Building with Blocks Now SLO County Office of Education: What is Distance Learning? Good Reads for Shelter-at-Home Taste Of Colony Sip & Savor — Exploring The Enclaves: Paso Wine Industry During COVID-19 Taste of Americana: A Tasty Trip Down Memory Lane


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Commentary reflects the views of the writers and does not necessarily reflect those of Colony Magazine. Colony 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.


Colony Magazine ©2020 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 Colony Magazine.

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We’re getting through this together. We’ll be stronger. We’ll be braver. Together. May 2020 | Colony Magazine | 7

Something Worth Reading | Publisher’s Letter

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

— Thomas Fuller, 1727

Sometimes you have to let go of the picture of what you thought life would be like and learn to find joy in the story you are actually living.

he month of May reminds us of our love of the warmth and sunshine, flowers are in bloom, and it is cool enough to spend the entire day with the windows and doors open. As we continue living life through this economic health crisis, we have the opportunity to re-evaluate how we spend our time and what is truly important to fill our souls and what we can eliminate as we start to come out of this pandemic. May is a special month for us for a few reasons, one being it is our anniversary month. This year we are celebrating eleven years back together on the 2nd and eight years of wedding bliss on the 5th. After thirteen years going our separate ways after high school, coming back together in 2009 was truly a blessing. Going through this challenging time as parents, business owners, and individuals in our community, we are so grateful for the strong foundation we built that has held us together in the toughest of times. Strength, love, and respect is crucial, especially when you are forced to Shelter-at-Home, which includes, but not limited to, home life, kiddos, work, and school on top of everything else you already handle on a daily basis. Having a partner and friend that you can count on and trust is one of the most valuable relationships one could have, and for that, we are so grateful. In this issue, we celebrate moms for Mother’s Day and offer some great local ideas on how to plan something special. We honor our fallen heroes on Memorial Day. We share stories of our essential local hero’s and offer some educational insight into distance learning. Our highlights include the “Best of the West” and Scholar-Athlete’s along with all our wonderful contributors sharing what is happening in their neck of the woods. We hope that you enjoy this month’s issue of Colony Magazine. We worked on it together with a skeleton crew, and each one of them along with our furloughed team members are all important in their own right. No matter what the outcome is after we all walk through this, we know we will be better for it. We know it will look different than before, and we will remember that we were able to share the beauty that makes our communities so special. We thank you for your continued love and support, we will all get through this together. All our love, Nic & Hayley

Rachel Marie Martin

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Colony Magazine | May 2020










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Nic & Hayley Mattson


reetings, wonderful readers, and community members! Last month, we faced the onset of a global pandemic that called for impacted communities around the world to shelter-at-home. Our local community responded, and here we are now facing the next phase with a lot of community angst about how quickly to return to an open society — and what that even looks like. The sad truth is, any way it goes, it will not be without loss of life. COVID-19 is not expected to be eradicated soon, if ever. The plan to recover includes the protection of those most vulnerable, but total control is not expected. The plan is to minimize continued community spread, and prevent infectious spread to our vulnerable.

We will get through this together, and there is light at the end of the tunnel for us. It is difficult to even write this, because things are changing so fast that by the time it is printed and delivered, information might be completely irrelevant or obsolete. That is the nature of this business. But what we hope will not be irrelevant or obsolete are the advertisers who you find in the pages of our magazine. In March, our way of life changed. Businesses were mandated to close, economy slowed to a near stop, and disruption of everyday life made it difficult to get from one day to the next for our community. The economic vitality of our community is in jeopardy, and we are all feeling it. But together, with our strength in numbers, we will rise.

Together, we can. On this page, there are advertisers whose dollar spent was in part to deliver this issue of Colony Magazine to you. Without their support, this magazine does not reach you. It is our commitment to continue delivering the best content available to our community. It is the same for those advertisers you see in the pages of this magazine. They are part of the Story of Us. This is our new chapter. In this time of extreme economic insecurity, any one of our advertisers might decide that they need to save money instead of advertising. But those who have continued with us are producing this magazine with us. We care about our community. I speak for our company. I speak for our advertisers. I speak for our readers. We care about our community. We are here for you, and we all want to see success in our stories. Together, we can. Each week, each month, all year, our salespeople work hard to make each issue of our magazine and each edition of

our newspapers — The Atascadero News — successful. They have bills to pay, kids to clothe, and mouths to feed. They work to make that happen. But you are our most powerful salespeople. Our reader's voice is our loudest voice. When you read our magazine, and appreciate the hard work that goes into it, please make it known to those local businesses who made it happen. Don't just pick your favorite, tell them all. Read through each page and look at each advertiser. Each ad represents a team of hardworking Roblans delivering goods and services to their customers. Their customers are our customers, our readers, our neighbors, our friends. We are all connected. For each advertiser, write them a note and mail it to their address thanking them for being a part of Colony Magazine and the Atascadero community. Go onto their social media pages and give them a five-star review. When you go into their store or shop, tell them you saw them in our magazine. Try checking out a new service from those in our pages to appreciate the diversity in our community and make a new

Then the flower lifted higher, not afraid of the sun. Firmly rooted in love, back from oblivion. With the healer’s touch opening a door To dreams untapped like never before. from ‘The Flower’ by Mike Wheeler 12 |

Colony Magazine | May 2020

Continued from Page 12

acquaintance. You are our best salesperson. You are our best friend. We will continue to produce and deliver the best magazine on the Central Coast, through the good times and the hard times. We thank you for all the support you have given to us, and your future support. Our magazine is our handshake with the community. It is the firm grip of our ladies and gentlemen that keep our community going. It is our square look into the eye of our neighbors that says, "I got you," and "Let's do this." It is the essence of a can-do attitude and the culmination of a job well done. It is your friends and nieghbors, delivered to your friends and neighbors. From cover to cover, your community needs you now more than ever. It is their hard-earned income that makes this magazine possible, and your hard-earned loyalty to them that brings it full circle. We are proud to be part of that circle, and encourage you to take note of the small and large businesses that call Atascadero home in our community, as well as our magazine. Colony Magazine is coming up on its second birthday, in July, and as we recover as a community, we will continue to bring you the best we have. Along with our sister publications — The Atascadero News and Paso Robles Magazine — we plan on connecting the community and building upon the tradition of print that defines the roots of Atascadero. We are proud to be a part of the network that is facing this pandemic, and proud of our community response in this unprecedented circumstance.

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May 2020 | Colony Magazine | 13

Tourismat Home | Santa Margarita


Simone Smith

e are certainly living in interesting times. The onset and spread of the Covid-19 virus has acted like a huge monkey wrench thrown into and disrupting the workings of our everyday lives. This new, and hopefully temporary, reality has jolted us out of complacency and we can no longer take the simplest things for granted, going to school or work, out for dinner, shopping, travel or vacation. Many people have been fearful, isolated or depressed but the good news is that we have the ability to adapt and this “time out for humans” gives us great opportunities to learn, create, observe and connect in new and different ways (even if from a distance of 6’ or farther away). So, what can we do when we can’t travel and have to stay at home? In talking to friends and neighbors here in Santa Margarita and by reading online group posts, many people are expressing how grateful they feel to live where we do with plenty of space to get outside and go for a walk. Travel

plans may have been put on hold but people are coming up with some fun ways to explore and who said you can’t be a tourist in your own town? Tourism is defined by the Encyclopedia Britanica as “the act and process of spending time away from home in the pursuit of recreation, relaxation and pleasure…”. Whether the virus stays around or not, taking part in some round-town micro-tourism can be a fun way to learn and find new things that may have previously gone unnoticed; and taking a bit of time to act as a tourist can recharge your mental batteries and maybe even spark some creativity or a new interest. How well do you know your town? When times are “normal” people are often consumed with their daily routines or use Santa Margarita as a “bedroom community”, simply a place to live while spending most waking hours working, going to school or socializing in neighboring cities like San Luis Obispo, or Atascadero. By being a tourist here on your own, with family or friends, you have so much to discover! Whatever tourist type you are (freestyle, advanced planner or focused) there’s something of interest for everyone if you just set your mind to explore. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Freestyle: Just get out there and explore! No advanced plan or direction, just wander and be mindful of the sights, sounds and even smells as you walk around. You may meet neighbors you’ve never seen before, hear the sound of a different bird or the scampering of squirrels up a tree, notice a classic car or a particularly nice garden. Who knows? What’s up that hill? What’s down that path? Be curious. If you’re interested in plants or wildlife you can download an app called Seek by iNaturalist, LLC. The Seek app utilizes the camera of your mobile phone to identify the plants and animals around you. Lizard, spider, mushroom, bird; whatever you see along your adventure you can learn about. Through this app you can take photos, earn badges and even participate in monthly observational challenges. Have fun and discover something new. Advanced Planner: Learn all you can before you explore. Interested in the history of Santa Margarita? Check out the historical society’s website at or follow the link to their Facebook page to learn how Santa Margarita came to be and what you might see Continued on Page 15

Three Fences from Heidi Petersen’s Santa Margarita Fence Collection

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Colony Magazine | May 2020

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or would like to find in the way of historical sites. Next, armed with your information, go out to find historical points of interest like the the jail or where the Santa Margarita Train Station once was. Did you know that Santa Margarita had it’s very own baseball team? Where did they play and what is there now? Focused: Exploration with a specific goal. Creativity and fun is happening with all kinds of ideas online and in Facebook groups. The Santa Margarita Rocks group encourages people to paint and place rocks around town for others to find and brighten their day. Going on a Bear Hunt is the perfect activity for families with small children, where neighbors participate by placing Teddy Bears or other stuffed animals in windows or visible locations to be spotted by kids while out on family walks. Fun for adults too, my friend Heidi Petersen started going on photo missions to make various collections of a theme, like fences, “who knew there was such a variety around town!” The possibilities for tourism at home are endless, the choice is yours and adventure awaits! 

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| Creston

Creston Makes a Jennifer Best


reston Community Association Secretary Vickie Bittle first dipped her toes in Creston Pool as youngster. As a teen, with her sister Pam and friends, she would ride horses down O’Donovan Road, hitch up her mount, swim for awhile and head for home. Now, she’s among a handful of Crestonites who work diligently to keep the pool open every summer for new generations. “It’s such a social time for parents and kids. It’s also an outlet for physical activities. Kids will swim all day. It can’t be beat,” said CCA Board member Charity Doherty. Creston’s community pool was built entirely by community

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volunteers in the early 1960s. It was a team effort led by the likes of Connie and Don Smith, Eve Bundy, the Lindquists, Ryans and other long-time as well as new families. That pool was flooded out by the rising waters of East Branch of Huerhuero Creek in the mid-1960s, but with the same enthusiasm that birthed that initial effort, Creston’s pool was back in action in short order. “This giant Creston area has no park, just the pool. When it’s a thousand degrees out here in the summertime, what else are you going to do? It’s a blessing,” Doherty said. The Creston Community Association was formed to provide financial support for the pool through community fundraising. Today, it is led by CCA Board President Lorraine Clarke, Treasurer, Cheri Roe, Bittle with board members Doherty and Noreen McKenney.

Fo r decades, it funded maintenance, insurance and lifeguard staff. These days, it leases the pool from Atascadero Unified School District, receives county funding to help cover lifeguards, and continues to fundraise to cover that lease, insurance and maintenance. “The most important thing about this pool is what it represents in our community: it’s community built with an emphasis on meeting the needs of kids and families,” Bittle said. During summer months, pool hours begin with a one-hour adult swim, a communal time for grown up water babies without all the splash. The remainder of the day is dedicated to open use. “When the kids are over there, they get great exercise. They learn how to get along. They learn how

to respect authority in the lifeguards who also serve as great roll models,” Bittle said. Between cannonballs and underwater tea parties, swimmers laze under shade trees, snack on the lawn, tan on the deck. “It’s a place I’ve met a whole lot of my f riends and made connections. It’s a place where families and kids can meet and play that’s safe with great lifeguards,” Bittle said. It’s also been a starting point for teens to enter the workplace. “Lifeguarding is a great first job. It teaches responsibility and gives the little kids people they can look up to. I encourage the

Colony Magazine | May 2020

lifeguards to help kids gain confidence, and the kids really respond well to the ’guards,” Doherty said. The pool generally opens for summer, but COVID-19 has left the opening date, like so many other social gathering options, up in the air. Creston pool supporters are holding out hope that their annual fundraiser can remain on track to fund a much-needed deck resurfacing. The CCA POOL-ooza, scheduled from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, May 16 at Creston Community Center, 5110 Swayze Road. Just as it has for decades, the annual event will include a chicken barbecue, raffles, and auction. Stagecoach Three will provide live music. Tickets are $25 per person, $50 per family, or $250 by advance reservation for a VIP table. For the latest on the fundraiser, including potential cancellation, visit CCACrestonPoolFund, e-mail, or call (805) 238-0403. Donations are also accepted any time by mail at CCA, P.O. Box 84, Creston, CA 93432. 

May 2020 | Colony Magazine | 17

| Artist in the Sky

Atascadero’s mystery skywriter, Paul Kendrick gives us a friendly reminder

Xander and Paul Kendrick smile for the camera from the cockpit of their plane. Contributed photo By Connor Allen


riday afternoon, while most of the county was locked away in their houses like a teenager that has been grounded, one North SLO County man broke free of his shelter-at-home shackles and took to the skies leaving all us stuck on the ground a friendly reminder etched in the heavens. If you were in Atascadero on Friday afternoon or logged onto Facebook, you more than likely saw the two-mile-wide happy face smiling down upon you. Starting around 1 p.m., the Atascadero native opened his masterpiece with one giant circle that began to catch the attention of excited onlookers across town, and the questions started pouring in. Video after video popped up on timelines as onlookers gave their best guess at what the mystery pilot could be drawing. It soon became apparent as he made his final pass, exposing a gargantuan grin greeting us all. It was not the first time that we have seen skywriting in North County. A few weeks back, a giant “805” also made an appearance but did not cause the social media storm like the smile did on Friday. After months of anonymity, the Atascadero News finally found the “805” mystery artist (thanks to a few friends on the internet) who says this will not be the last time he takes to the air with a machine full of smoke and images to create. “I started flying when I was 14, that is when I started taking flight lessons,” Atascadero resident Paul Kendrick said. “I

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flew an airplane by myself before I drove a car by myself, which was right after I turned 16, that’s the youngest you can fly.” The 38-year-old Atascadero native grew up in the air and takes to it whenever he can as a means to clear his mind and adventure. As a young man in his late teens and early twenties, while most kids spent their days at the beach or playing video games, he spent his time in the air, often taking off for hours of flying high above California or wherever the wind took him. Now, as an adult, and more importantly, a dad, his time for long flights has disappeared, but just as he did, his nine year-oldson Xander, loves the air and when he can’t come along for a ride he sometimes leaves a message etched into the clouds. “This is only the third time that I have done skywriting. I did a smiley face and then wrote ‘805’ and then did the one Friday,” Kendrick said. “But I’ll be honest with you, I had plans to do something more ambitious, but it’s kind of a hard thing to do, skywriting.” Not only is Kendrick a certified flight instructor but also a pretty advanced mechanic. The plane he flies is a Vans Aircraft RV-7 that he built in his garage. “What I am doing wouldn’t really be possible from a practical sense any other way. The nature of it being a home built airplane means it is registered with the FAA as an experimental aircraft,” Kendrick explained. “There are 10,000 of this particular model airplane out there and flying in the world, so maybe experimental might be a bit of a misnomer, but by being experimental, it allows me a lot more options

when it comes to maintenance and modifications, like a smoke system for example.” It would be nearly impossible for a pilot to add a smoke machine to a production built airplane that comes from a factory, but with a “experimental aircraft,” Kendrick can make all the necessary modifications to create his illustrations. Now with three runs under his belt, our previously anonymous skywriter is ready to get a bit more ambitious, the only problem is that there is no way to practice without the entire county as your audience. “One of the things that makes me really nervous about trying something more complicated is, as soon as I screw it up, there is no backspace,” Kendrick said. “My practice is in front of everyone who is outside and has a camera and happens to post it on social media, so I only get one shot at doing it right.” With both feet planted on the ground, it seems easy enough, but to Kendrick, nearly 17,000 feet above us, the image is mirrored and flipped upside down. Smiley faces are simple enough, but Kendrick has told the Atascadero News his plans for his next trip, and while we won’t spoil the fun, we can report that next time he might leave us all a message rather than a sun sized emoji.

“It definitely makes me smile seeing all the posts,” he said. “I am glad that I can go out and do something like that, and it gets a positive reaction.” What also makes skywriting difficult is that the canvas is at the mercy of mother nature. Kendrick can only write on days that he has off of work when it’s also clear, sunny and relatively still. The windier the day, the quicker the image disappears, and if there are clouds behind his creations, then it will be lost and hard to see. However, next time it looks like a beautiful day, step outside and take a peek at the clouds because you never know what message could be waiting to give you hope or make you smile.  Colony Magazine | May 2020

| Shop Entrada


By Camille DeVaul

here is no better way to support your community than by shopping small. Though it may seem impossible, it is essential now more than ever to support our local businesses. Farron Elizabeth, who is celebrating its fifth anniversary, is a unique clothing boutique in Atascadero. And lucky for us, the shop is just as easy to shop online as it is in person! Farron Walker, the owner of Farron Elizabeth, opened her boutique in Atascadero five years ago after she fell in love with the Central Coast. With her background in fashion and design, Farron always wanted to open a boutique shop of her own. She found herself charmed by the downtown of Atascadero and opened her shop, Farron Elizabeth, in 2015. On April 24, Farron had planned an anniversary party and ribbon cutting for her store's fifth anniversary. Because of the new circumstances, the party is postponed, but Farron will still celebrate the store's successful five years and counting! May 2020 | Colony Magazine

The clothing boutique has become a community favorite with its returning customers feeling more like family. Customers who were at opening day for the boutique still shop with them today! Farron Elizabeth can also be shopped at farronelizabeth. com. Their online store mirrors their physical one. Currently offering free shipping and returns, customers can experience the same in-store feel and customer service while shopping online. “Some of them I’m super close with, they're not just customers. It’s like a little family. And I value that a lot,” says Farron. It is easy to become a returning customer to Farron Elizabeth because the shop is continually changing. Each week, 20 new styles are added in-store and to their online shop! Not only are new styles added, but the store is wholly rearranged each week, and a photoshoot for the new items is also done. There is always something new for customers to see and enjoy. The staff at Farron Elizabeth is made up of women from almost all stages of life. Some are raising children, others have children

grown up and gone, and some don’t have any. Some are married, and others are single. Farron says, “They're not just my employees, they're my friends, and they have an amazing relationship with the customers too.” No matter what path or stage of life you are in, the staff of Farron Elizabeth can relate to all customers. With a team made up of women of all body types and fashion style, everyone can feel welcome to shop here. Along with affordable apparel, customers can find many local products in-store and online. They carry Key Flame Candle Co., Glass Head Studio, Body Bean, and Balm Standard. Farron is currently in the works of developing a Farron Elizabeth exclusive flavor with Balm Standard! On Fridays are for champagne and 20% discounts at Farron Elizabeth! The Color of Friday Sale occurs every week. A different color is selected for each week. Every item with that color in it is 20% off. This sale includes clothing, jewelry, and accessories. The sale is also available online. In addition to the Color of Friday sale, customers can come in and

enjoy complimentary wine and bubbly from 4:00-7:00 PM while they shop! On Sundays, customers can shop for a cause at the store. Every Sunday, is Jewels for Jack where all jewelry is 20% off, with 5% of the sales are donated to Jack’s Helping Hand. This organization assists SLO County children with special needs and cancer through financial assistance and programs. Customers can also participate in this sale for a cause on Farron Elizabeth’s website. Farron Elizabeth carries attainable and affordable apparel for all individuals. Even if you cannot make it into the store, Farron Elizabeth is still available online with the same excellent customer service experience. Thanks to Farron Elizabeth, we can support some of our community while in our leggings and slippers at home!  5955 Entrada Ave. Atascadero, CA 93422 Hours: Monday-Thursday 10:30 a - 6:00 p Friday 10:30 a - 7:00 p Saturday 11:00 a - 6:00 p Sunday 11:00 a- 4:00 p | 19

By Hayley Mattson

to your personal shopping experience: • Photo of your mom (or loved one) s Mother’s Day approaches, • Three words you would use to and we continue to walk best describe her; outgoing, loving, through another beloved scheduled, humorous, thoughtholiday in the middle of this pandemic. ful, giving, to name a few, get your We have the opportunity to be creative kiddos involved too and work with our local businesses • Three things your mom loves and experiences to set a new course and enjoys; coffee, reading, taking of direction for all our gifting needs. photos, cooking, gardening, grandThese challenging times allow us kids, antiquing, etc. to take advantage of the services that • A magazine or book your mom have long been offered but perhaps loves; Paso Robles Magazine, unknown to the general public. Our Colony Magazine, The Notebook, local boutique gift shops offer personal The Moment of Lift, anything she shopping experiences. Local wineries has on the kitchen counter, nightand hotels can help you create a unique stand or coffee table day or weekend package to use now or • Direction, what are you looking in the future. Salons and hairstylists for; two-three gifts that can be put will put together personalized bags or together in a cute bag or basket, one baskets with a gift card, products, and significant gift, a few small items other items readily available. Restauthat you will be joining with other rants and caterers are at your fingerproducts from a different source or tips, bringing home your mother or location or you can let them know wife’s favorite meal or dessert. Not to you have no idea and they will guide mention items you may already have at you home that you can customize. • Finally, your budget, regardless There are many options, so to pin of what that the amount is your it down, here are a few ideas and tips personal shopper will be able to to help make your Mother’s Day giftassist and let you know what they ing one for the records books because can provide, this is key to the success we all need a little sunshine, and what of your experience and outcome so better way than to celebrate these be sure to plan accordingly special women in our lives. A few Local Shopping Resources: Personal Shopping The General Store, Paso Robles; RemiHaving a shop owner as your nisce Antiques, Paso Robles; Anna and personal shopper is a unique experience Mom, Atascadero; Farron Elizabeth, for sure and who would know their Atascadero; Hope Chest Emporium, product more. The success Atascadero; Indigo of this type of shopping Clothing, Atascadero. is all up to you, so here are a few things to help give guidance


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Local Outing and Getaway As with our small shop owners, our local economy is driven by touring our beautiful area, so why not use our local resources to create an experience she will not forget. Here are some packages that can be put together just by calling your favorite winery or hotel: Picnic pairing with your local wineries • Contact your favorite local winery • Request a cheese platter and two bottles of wine • Ask them to write down the types of cheese and descriptions of any other items on the tray along with details about the wine and why they chose to pair it with the food, note; this may take a few days to prepare so be sure to give them that time • Let them know this is a gift, and they will package it for you in a bag or a basket depending on your budget • Finally, your part is to plan where to have the picnic, ask your littles where they want to go, whether it be in your back yard or a remote location, whichever you choose it is sure to be unique, just remember to bring something for the kids to enjoy too. Getaway with your local hotels • Determine if you want to plan a stay-cation now or a future date • Contact one of the beautiful hotels we have along the Central Coast within San Luis County • Let them know that this is a gift for Mother’s Day and what are their local specials and the dates required to use by • Request, no contact room service, coffee in the room and two local restaurants that you can pre-plan meals while visiting • Request that flowers be in the room upon arrival and a bottle of champagne, wine or sparkling water • Ask if they can send you an e-card with all the details so you can place in a card for your loved one • Finally, have your kiddos make a beautiful card or pick one up from one of your local gift shops, along with a puzzle or some flowers to present or drop off

on Mother’s Day for her to enjoy A few Local Winery and Hotel Resources: Tooth & Nail, Templeton; Aron Hill Vineyards, Templeton; J. Dusi, Paso Robles; Rava Wines, Paso Robles; Adelaide Inn, Paso Robles; Hotel Cheval, Paso Robles. Personal Chef & Spirits This happens to be one of my personal favorites; if anything positive has come from the health crisis, this is it. Having local chefs from our five-star restaurant’s meal plan for us a few days a week or month could not be any better. Here is a way to best utilize their services: Mother’s Day Personal Dining Experience • Choose your Mom or Wife’s local favorite restaurant • Plan your meal, whether it be a picnic, candlelight dinner or brunch at home • Call ahead give them as much advance notice as possible so you can coordinate picking it up and the at home cooking arrangements if needed along with any special beverages, they may offer • Request that they email you a specialized menu or details regarding the order and what you will be serving • Print out your menu or have the kiddos write it and place in a frame from home you already have to set the table the day of • Go out and pick some flowers from your yard or a have local florist drop off a beautiful arrangement for your loved one and enjoy the special day A few Local Restaurant and Florist Resources: Odyssey World Café, Paso Robles; Thomas Hill Organics, Paso Robles; Red Scooter Deli, Paso Robles; Cider Creek Bakery, Paso Robles; Jeffry’s Wine Country BBQ, Paso Robles; Tooth & Nail, Templeton; Pacific Harvest Catering, Templeton; Colony Market & Deli, Atascadero; Guest House Grill, Atascadero. Regardless if you decide to use your local resources or items that you already have at home, being together (in person or virtually) and enjoying the moment appreciating all she does and has done is what the real meaning is all about. The greatest gift you will ever know is to love and be loved in return. Happy Mother’s Day to all the beautiful mommas and women who step-up and fill that significant role.  Colony Magazine | May 2020

Shop Entrada for

Mother's Day

By Camille DeVaul


hat are the odds that three businesses sitting side by side with each other all have mothers working beside their daughters? Well, it’s true! On Entrada Avenue, in Atascadero, the owners of Black Sheep, Farron Elizabeth, and Anna & Mom all have their mothers working beside them. Vintage boutique, Black Sheep, was opened in June of 2019 by Tiffani Pryor. Her passion for unique vintage finds developed into also supporting local artists, woman-owned businesses, and giving back concept companies. Pryor carries locally owned Rosen Skincare, Cloud Bench Jewelry, Wildly Pine Jewelry, and more. In the shop, Pryor creates macrame and weaving art pieces and displays them for sale in the store with custom options available. Pryor always related herself as the black sheep of her family, inspiring the name of her vintage boutique. Her mother, known beloved as Mother T, has become a face customers look forward to seeing when visiting Black Sheep. Mother T believed in Pryor and her vision for her vintage store from the start. “My mother and I are a team,” says Pryor, “we have bonded over this adventure, and Black Sheep continues to bring both of us so much joy and a deeper mother-daughter relationship.” Black Sheep has not only let Pryor May 2020 | Colony Magazine

embrace her enthusiasm for vintage clothing, but it has ignited a passion for supporting her local community. Pryor understands the importance of small businesses and advocates for them to use teamwork. Next door to Black Sheep, shoppers will find clothing boutique, Farron Elizabeth. Owner Farron Walker is currently celebrating the store's fifth anniversary! She opened the store in April five years ago after falling in love with the charming downtown of Atascadero. Farron’s boutique carries attainable and affordable clothing and accessories. Customers can also shop Farron Elizabeth at for added convenience! With free shipping and returns, customers can buy online and experience the same in-store feel and customer service. Karla Falk, Farron’s mother, shares a love for fashion with her daughter. “It’s comforting having your mom around, and it's just nice being around

her—I can bounce ideas off of her, she has a really good sense of fashion,” says Farron. Many customers have made friends with Farron and her mother. They work harmoniously together to create an atmosphere that feels like home to customers. Her store and employees can relate to women with all body types and stages of life. On the other side of Farron, Elizabeth shoppers will find children and mother boutique, Anna & Mom. Anna Pecharich, the owner of Anna & Mom, fulfilled her dream of opening her retail store in August of 2017. Here, shoppers can find unique clothing and gifts for children ages newborn and up! W hen Pecharich opened her shop, she decided to offer clothing and gifts for mothers when they come to shop for their children. When Father’s Day comes around, they have the perfect gifts for dad too! Building the store was an act of labor of

love. With the help of her mother, Pecharich built the store into what it is today. Pecharich says, “My mom and I have always been really close.” Jill Olsen, the mother of Pecharich, is a recent breast cancer survivor. After taking a year away from the store to recover, she is happy to be back beside her daughter and granddaughter, Isabella Pecharich, who also loves to work in the boutique. “she will step in or step out; however, I need her,” says Pecharich. “I’m so fortunate that my mom can do that with me.” Customers can look forward to some exciting changes coming to Anna & Mom soon! The downtown Entrada area of Atascadero is blooming into a lively area for dining and shopping. On the first Friday of each month, shops in the area are open until 8:00 PM, which coincides with their Art, Wine, & Brew Tour happening every three months! During the Art, Wine & Brew Tour, guests can stroll around City Hall and enjoy tastings and other offerings from merchants throughout the area. It is more important now than ever to support your community by shopping small. What better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than to stop by spending an afternoon helping this trio of strong women-owned businesses who all have their mother’s by their side.  | 21


got allergies?


s we continue to experience major lifestyle changes due to COVID19 pandemic, it’s more important now more than ever to stay positive and creative with our time. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updated information and funny videos! Miserable with Allergies? In addition to providing you with some effective immune support products, this beautiful Spring weather has those prone to allergies feeling a bit miserable. The Natural Alternative is stocked up with your favorites for this glorious time of year! LifeSeasons BreatheX Allergy & Sinus Support supports immune function, normal histamine production and relieves sinus congestion. BreatheX provides sinus support and soothes nasal passages with quercetin and bromelain which help maintain healthy sinus tissues and Vitamin C that supports immunity and normal histamine production. The citrus bioflavonoids promote blood vessel integrity and healthy immune response and nettle leaf calms histamine production. BreatheX has been awarded “Best in Class” for relief from allergy symptoms. Now on sale 20% of during the month of May! Matthew’s Honey is our local honey that customers love! Exceptionally rich in nutrients and savory sweet, this anti-

oxidant rich honey is a great compliment to oatmeal, tea, coffee or whatever needs a touch of healthy sweetness! To keep nasal passages clear, try an ancient secret – the Neti Pot! It can be used daily while showering to remove dust, pollen, excess mucous and other irritants. Used with a saline solution (we also carry the special salt), you gently rinse your nasal passages to soothe and moisten when they feel dry and irritated. As an alternative to Neti Pot, try Xlear saline nasal spray to alleviate nasal congestion and relieve sinus pressure. The key here is to reduce the irritant’s ability to adhere to nasal membranes, washing away dust and pollen that triggers an allergic response resulting in runny nose and watery eyes. This simple spray is natural, fast & effective, and safe for daily use! We are working hard to continue to restock supplements, especially immune and allergy support products. If you call us at (805) 237-8290 with your order, we can ring up for you and have ready for curbside delivery. If you are not able to pick up, we certainly can mail to you. If you wish to place an order or just need some support during this critical time, please call us – we are here for you! The Team @ The Natural Alternative Nutrition Center


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Colony Magazine | May 2020

10th annual

antique equipment antique equipment show show at at Santa Santa Margarita Margarita Ranch Ranch

By Camille DeVaul


or the ultimate All American Memorial Day weekend, step out into the fresh air and tour the Best of the West Antique Equipment Show at the historic Santa Margarita Ranch! Starting Friday, May 22 through Sunday, May 24, guests are welcome to explore and enjoy the equipment that helped build America into the country it is today. More importantly, the weekend is dedicated to remembering and honoring veterans who have given their lives for our country. The Best of the West Antique Equipment Show is a Pioneer Day committee event. Santa Margarita Ranch poses as the perfect location to enjoy a family gathering outside and teach the younger generations May 2020 | Colony Magazine

about the heritage of our area. Due to COVID-19, the Pioneer Day Committee has decided to proceed with caution for the event and are continually monitoring the current situation. Tom Madden, Pioneer Day committee member, says, “We don’t want to do anything that’s going to jeopardize anybody’s health.” The decision to cancel or postpone the event will be made by local, state, or federal officials. Until that decision is made, the show must go on! Anyone who has attended the past few years at the show knows Santa Margarita Ranch has the acreage to adapt to social-distancing rules and still be fun. “I’m getting calls every day from people saying ‘please don’t cancel it

because if this all plays out by then, we’re all going to need something to do,’” says Madden, “your event is so spread out that it would be the perfect kind of event.’” Tickets are now available online or can be purchased at the gate. Weekend passes are $25, and day passes are $10 with children ages 10-and-under free. Guests can also opt to camp at the grounds for an additional fee. All proceeds from the show will help fund the Best of the West Show and annual Paso Robles Pioneer Day festivities. Each morning the gates open at 8 a.m. and close that evening at 5 p.m. Food and beer sales open at 10 a.m. with plenty of options, including the Farm Bureau Trip Tip, 4-H Burgers and Corn, 805 Taqueria, and more. At noon each day, all operations will pause for a

military salute with the flag in the car and train area. A military parade follows the salute at 12:30 p.m. Throughout the day, depending on current social distancing guidelines, guests can enjoy a tractor parade, earthmoving demo, plowing demo, blacksmithing, and so much more! A favorite crowd activity is taking a ride on the train. Not just any train, but a steam engine from Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman and passenger coaches from Santa Fe and Disneyland Railroad from the 1950s! Train rides begin each morning at 9:45 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Trips leave about every 60 minutes, and separate tickets for the train can be purchased in person for an additional fee. Continued on Page 24 | 23

Continued from Page 23

about every 60 minutes, and separate tickets for the train can be purchased in person for an additional fee. In addition to trains and antique farming equipment, military aircraft from WWII are on display and take a flight throughout the weekend. “We’ve had the B-25 every year,” says Madden, “and that model of airplane was instrumental in the first attack on Japan in 1942, the surprise Doolittle raiders attack and we have other military aircraft that come.” Sometimes veterans take a ride in the B-25. Military tanks and other equipment are also displayed at the show. Veterans themselves own many of the aircraft on display. In the past, on Friday, the first day of the show, school field trips were scheduled to come and explore the show. About 300 to 400 third and fourth graders from around the county get to go and explore the ranch and take train rides. There is something for everyone to enjoy there. Madden mentions that he loves, “Anything old that can teach history, and I love the train there.” The Best of the West show is an opportunity to teach students how Memorial Day weekend is more than just the start of summer — it’s about honoring those who have given their lives for our country. Students have so much fun; many of them end up coming back with their families. The event is so vast and spread out you could attend all three days and see something new. For the best possible experience, it is recommended to wear comfortable shoes and be prepared for walking! Hats are recommended for hot days or even days when we expect a few light sprinkles. A schedule is available online so visitors can plan their visit accordingly. Locals from around the county bring equipment and tractors from various decades. “It showcases the mechanized progress of 20th Continued on Page 25

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Colony Magazine | May 2020

Guests can enjoy a tractor parade, earthmoving demo, plowing demo, blacksmithing, and even ride on a steam engine from Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. WWII military equipment, like the B-52 will also be on display.

Continued from Page 22

century America,” says Madden In 2017, the show’s biggest year, there were several hundred pieces of equipment on display. Andy Brown, with ABI Construction, Carson Wiley from Arroyo Grande, and Dwight Peterson, are just a few of the many locals who bring in their antique machinery. Joel and Terry Switzer bring their gas engines, trucks, and some cars to show. Switzer, Peterson, and others also sponsor a Friday night gathering for all the sponsors. The Hansen family is also heavily involved in putting on the Best of the West Show. They bring in their Cat 60 and are instrumenMay 2020 | Colony Magazine

tal in getting volunteer truckers as well as getting other businesses involved with the show. It has become a community effort to put on the show. Entirely run by volunteers, the show is becoming a tradition that many look forward to every year. JB Dewar is known as the “rockstar” of the community not only for their contributions to Pioneer Day and the Best of the West Show but for their tractor restoration kids and more. They have been donating oil and fuel to the tractors for as long as anyone can remember. Memorial weekend is known to be the kickoff of summer, but more importantly, it is dedicated

to remembering and honoring veterans who gave their lives serving. This year, we will have many people to thank for their service to our country in more ways than one. “We want first responders, doctors, nurses, paramedics and everybody out there to know we got your back and we love you and appreciate you,” says Madden, “They are on the frontlines of something different from war but equally as devastating to those who are impacted.”  For more information on tickets, trailer camping, and all the show has to offer visit: | 25

D C U I O M A O N F Y D n


y enn

ts ren


Wa de



P Dr.



By Connor Allen

alifornia Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order on March 19 for Californians to stay home except for those deemed ‘essential’ in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. For the last 33 consecutive days, the people of California have looked to their leaders for instruction and direction. In these unprecedented times, many people lead the community, from nurses and doctors risking their lives to fight the virus, employees of an essential business who show up every day to make sure the community has food and resources, as well as all the small businesses that have entirely changed their operating systems to serve the county and their neighbors. But no two people have had a greater impact or a greater weight to carry than County Health

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Officer Dr. Penny Borenstein and County Administrative Officer and Director of Emergency Services Wade Horton. Together, Horton and Borenstein played a significant role in making decisions for SLO County — like sheltering at home and the closing of local businesses that have impacted every person in this community — and it’s not something that they have taken lightly. “I can say it was the most difficult decision I have ever made in my life,” Horton told The Atascadero News and The Paso Robles Press in an interview on Saturday. “And probably will be the most difficult decision I make in my life. I knew what the impact would be, or I thought I knew what the impact would be and making that decision, I am just trying to do the right thing for what we need.

Ever y day I am making a lot of decisions, and every day I make those decisions based off of the information I have and how I can do right by the community. It is a very humbling spot to be in.” Horton has served not only this county but also his country with 15 years of service in the reserves, including time overseas and was unanimously voted by the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors to be the newest San Luis Obispo County Administrative Officer in November 2017. His counterpart Borenstein has a strong resume as well. “I have a nearly 30-year career of doing this work,” Dr. Borenstein said, who has spent time working in public health all over the county, including working in Washington D.C. during the Anthrax outbreak of 2001 and

working in Maryland during the times of Ebola and SARS. “I am very much accustomed to the onset of a new disease or new situation that understandably causes great public concern, and I have been in the situation many times before having to help manage that concern with facts and our best understanding of the disease situation,” Borenstein stated. “Having said that, those situations and this one are very humbling. No manner of training or experience can prepare a public health position for a worstcase scenario because it is global in its scope, deep in its impact. As you have seen with this situation and many others, we learn more about the details of the specific germs, organisms; it’s manner of spread, it’s propensity to hit certain groups, the asymptomatic nature of it, so it is very humbling to be in a decision making position Colony Magazine | May 2020

when you can’t have all the facts at hand.” Borenstein declared San Luis Obispo County in a state of emergency on March 13 and, together with Horton, has continued to extend the order every 14 days as needed for the safety of our community at the expense of time with their loved ones. “I am incredibly grateful for the support I have from my family, my wife, and four kids,” Horton said. “I don’t see them a lot. I can’t even remember. It’s been 44 or 45 days straight now working and making the best decisions that we can, and my wife has just been incredibly supportive.” However, with so much uncertainty surrounding our future and our mortality becoming clearer seemingly with each passing minute, our most visible and most scrutinized leaders have still been able to find the specks of good

amid a sea of so much darkness and fear. “I think there is a lot of good that has come out of this,” Horton said. “I’m watching people that are rising to the occasion and performing in situations that they thought they probably couldn’t do. People that are put in positions, particularly some of our public servants, might have found themselves in public works and are now are handling a sheltering program or managing a logistics supply chain. There’s the outpouring of business that are changing their manufacturing to make PPE [personal protective equipment]. The distilleries that have changed their processes to make hand sanitizer, I am just so proud to be apart of the community.” So far, through these nearly 50 days of quarantine, our community has shown time and time again that we are all in this

together by helping one another out. Still, both Dr. Borenstein and Horton have begun to feel the community anxiety and urges everyone to continue working together. “What I really want to say is that I hope that we can continue to [work together],” Dr. Borenstein said. “The anxiety and the totally understandable economic concerns, they are real, they are massive. I genuinely hope they will not lead us down a path of division and divisiveness. As we continue to come out of this, we need to have some continued measures of restrictions and mitigations that I would ask of our collective community not to start turning on each other at this time.” The work of Borenstein and Horton, coupled with the fantastic response by the citizens, San Luis Obispo County, contin-

ues to show some of the lowest and most promising COVID19 numbers across the country by several metrics and the public unrest has begun to grow louder. Still, those complaints have not fallen on deaf ears. “I know that people are hurting right now and are scared. They have done an outstanding job working as a community to bend the curve and we have bent it, and now that fear has transitioned into worrying about their loved ones getting sick too, ‘Hey, I need to get back to work,’ and we certainly understand that and we are doing everything we can right now in order to get people back to work, get kids back to school and get the faith community back in their places of worship, that is our focus. How do we do that safely, and how do we do that without creating another spike or another wave of this disease.” 


Information Resources • SLO County Official Info

• Templeton Chamber Templeton Strong page

• CDC – Center for Disease Control

• SLO County Official COVID-19 Page

• Atascadero Chamber OTHER COVID-19 RESOURCES

• WHO – World Health Organization


• California COVID-19 Response Page


• Paso Robles Chamber

• Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Tracking

Brought to you by the Paso Robles Press

May 2020 | Colony Magazine | 27

Happy — Safe & Healthy — Memorial Day By Nicholas Mattson


s we enter May, we embrace spring full-force. Flowers bloom on trees and hillsides, grapevines have budded, and the winter is melted away by more and more sunshine. It is a bright and scentful welcome as the door opens to summer. At the end of May, Memorial Day weekend brings us together for a somber reflection to remember those who gave their lives in service, and a joyful reunion with friends and family as summer rises on the horizon. This year is different. 2020 will always be different for us. Our muscle memory yearns for habit, ready to rise to the occasion as we have so many years before. Memorial Day 2020 is different. It must be different. Our national reflection and admiration for servicemen and servicewomen remains high as the point atop Marines’ barracks cover, and as solumn as a salute — but we have added another war to our list. Our coronavirus war called for a new soldier, and took lives on American soil. Our soldiers on the front lines were nurses and doctors, deliverypersons and grocers. It has been a war to protect

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our most vulnerable and for full sea to

a war that called participation from shining sea. As of this writing, things have already changed. As of this printing, things have changed again. As you read this, things change still. Things always change, and always will. It may be appropriate that Memorial Day is our first national holiday after the coronavirus washed across our country. Memorial Day began as Decoration Day, with roots in the American Civil War — as we face COVID-19, we do so in a country that stands as divided as much as any time since the Civil War. COVID-19 has brought us together at first, and it will be up to us to stay together. It is told that in late April in 1866, an assembly of four Mississippi women traveled to decorate graves of soldiers who died in the Battle of Shiloh. They found Confederate graves in good condition and cared for alongside graves of Union soldiers untended. Moved by the scene, they honored the Union soldiers’ graves

with flower decorations as well, in somber grief for lives lost. It is in the aftermath of our coronavirus war that we have the opportunity to honor each other in a similar spirit. No matter what our differences before this war, it is upon us to decide how we remember our casualties — and how we choose to honor their lives. It was not North versus South. It was not “us” versus “them.” It was a war between us and our better selves. We will come out of this as better people — all of us will. This Memorial Day is different. We witness the canceling of Memorial Day events — a weekend which is the current in a long series of dominoes to fall. But it is different. It is the first national holiday to fall, and the only holiday in which we honor those who lost their lives in service to the country. Our national death toll from COVID-19 is still climbing, and by some estimates, the disease will be around a long time, but we have reason to celebrate the end of the war. We faced the enemy squarely, and we mitigated our losses. We lost many battles, but we have won this war. We are not free from disease,

but we are learning to live with it. We are recovering. This Memorial Day is different. We will forever be changed as a nation and as a world, but we will remember those who gave their lives so we could live free. We will remember those who gave their lives so we could live. We are coming back together. We cannot tell the future, and as of this writing, Memorial Day is more than a month away. But we predict that this Memorial Day will be a day that more people gather together — though probably with some careful distance — than have been together since the second week of March. In honor of those who will continue to isolate for their health and ours, please put out an American flag in honor of them, our unity, and our pledge to be one nation. From our family to yours — Paso Robles Magazine, Colony Magazine, The Paso Robles Press, and The Atascadero News — we wish you and yours a very happy Memorial Day weekend. Wash your hands, share a spirit of patriotism, and remember those who gave their lives and freedom for ours. 

Colony Magazine | May 2020


By Nicholas Mattson


he first season of the new FOX show Lego® Masters ended on Wednesday, April 15 with an epic battle between three highly skilled teams in a winnertake-all contest for $100,000. The season was filled with nine episodes of unexpected, imaginative builds spawned from the minds of oversized, overgrown children — it was totally fun to watch. The best part though, is how our boys responded. Mirac, 7, and Max, 5, both loved the show. The episodes aired at 9 p.m. on Wednesdays and they would wait every week for Thursday to watch the next episode. The boys would watch the show with a pile of Lego® (yes, the first episode taught us all that the plural of Lego® is Lego®), and they would take the cue from host Will Arnet and start building along with the teams on TV. Between riding bikes, "school," and short errands around town, the boys would spend hours mimicking the contestants on the show while making their 'builds' with the assortment of Lego® at their disposal. My wife and I enjoyed watching their imaginations run wild with a dozen professional-grade models for inspiration and an entertaining selection of themes for each show. We played the shows for hours

May 2020 | Colony Magazine

on end at times, and didn't feel bad because instead of sitting on the couch watching TV, they were digging through buckets of Lego® on a mission to create their own epic builds. They played together, played by themselves, and played along with their favorite contestants building their favorite scenes. It was a game of elimination, and each week a team went home. The boys rooted for their favorite teams and graded the team builds along with the judges. Working parents of young kids are figuring out how to survive the current paradigm, and how to use all available tools out our disposal. One of our parent-friends told us they play nature documentaries for their son and incentivize him to take notes about the shows. The past weeks have been a strain on all of us taking on way more than we had planned, but finding new ways to work with our kids and watching them grow in front of us as we try the work-from-hometeach-from-home-shelter-at-home method of surviving in America. Hopefully, you have found a way to manage. If you have any of your own awesome things you learned, please send them our way. We are still looking for new ways to keep the kids on the right track while we navigate through our shelter-at-home. 

Max and Mirac Mattson break from building to play with their LEGO® set. Photos by Nicholas Mattson | 29

| Exploring the Enclaves

Paso Wine Industry:

Coping with Covid-19


mericans are adjusting to a new normal in the midst of the global pandemic. With physical distancing and closures of schools and businesses, communities are carving out an alternative slowpaced lifestyle. Here in Paso, where wine production plays a starring role, Covid-19 has impacted the industry like all other businesses. The absence of wine tourism has squeezed hotels, restaurants and other support industries. “It's been a pretty dramatic change for our member wineries,” commented Joel Peterson, executive director of Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance (PRWCA). “Luckily our wineries are quite nimble and got creative and started doing virtual tastings, online sales and specials to show the Paso wine experience. But it’s still a challenge as many small wineries operate as Direct to Consumer (DTC) and wines are sold through their tasting rooms.” To counteract this impact, PRWCA modulated Home with Paso Wine on, a program populated with virtual tastings and special offers from wineries plus a Zoom Hangout that features three local winemakers every Friday at 3 p.m. In the near future, “we may be looking at social distancing tasting where there’s proper spacing and sanitation methods and reservation only tastings,” Peterson added. There have been layoffs industry wide, Peterson noted, especially with part-time tasting room workforce at larger wineries. Typically small wineries operated by a single owner or couple manage to run the tasting rooms themselves. Diablo Paso Winery’s Enrique and Nora Torres are such owners. Enrique, who is fortunate to maintain his fulltime job as assistant winemaker at CaliPaso Winery, is currently open for

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pick-ups only at his downtown tasting room. Diablo Paso’s solid wine club membership has made up for some of the loss from walk-in business. “[Our members] are very supportive and ordering more than their commitment,” commented Enrique. “We will survive; we can pay the rent.” Copia Vineyards, another small business owned by Varinder and Anita Sahi, recently opened a downtown tasting room with a small staff. “We are working hard to pay our hospitality manager and vineyard manager,” said Anita. The one parttime member will be brought back once the tasting room is opened. Dave McGee, owner of Monochrome Wines in Tin City, has operated his tasting room without a staff. By launching his virtual tasting for a strong wine club membership and offering free shipping, McGee has seen a rise in his orders. “People didn’t drop their membership due to financial difficulties,” said McGee. However, sales are down by 10 percent due to tasting room closure. Wineries with good mailing/ membership list are seeing increased online sales, noted winemaker Stewart McLennan. “If you had that built up, you have a bit of a cushion.” McLennan, who recently opened his tasting room Sharpei Moon in Templeton, noted that he had his best weekend just one week before the lockdown. Tablas Creek Vineyard, Eberle Winery and Daou Vineyards & Winery are among the mid-size to large wineries maintaining full-time staff on payroll with some assistance for part-time workers. “We have not laid off anybody," said Daniel Daou, winemaker and co-proprietor of Daou Vineyards & Winery. "Our goal is to make sure we bite the bullet as long as we can so nobody gets laid off. Tasting room staff is involved in tele-sales, assisting in wine pick-ups and even helping out in vineyards and with bottling.” Daou’s hospitality center (open

daily for pick-ups only) is quiet and its strong presence in restaurants is down but the DTC, wine club membership and wholesale business is strong. “The only thing that's saving us and other Paso wineries that I know of is wholesale and that biz is doing great.” The small wineries without a wholesale presence are at risk he feels. “If this drags on another two to three months, you’re going to get hurt." Paso prides itself in small family-owned wineries crafting limited production of different varietal wines and experimental blends that don’t fit the wholesale business model, which tends to target the popular cabernet sauvignon and chardonnay wines. “Everybody who works for Eberle is receiving their full pay check, plus medical, dental and optical,” said Eberle Winery founder Gary Eberle, seated at his spot in front of the winery. “It’s good for business and I do miss the interaction [in the tasting room].” Nevertheless, Eberle is happy to see customers load wine cases in the driveway. “Last year April was huge and this year we are three days away from exceeding that,” he said. Jason Haas, general manager and partner at Tablas Creek, said his full-timers are on payroll with people shifted around in departments. The part-time tasting room workforce was given an advance month’s salary and the company is helping them apply for unemployment and other benefits. While tasting room and restaurants sales are impacted, as is the wholesale business which is down by 60 percent, the wine club membership has made up for this loss. “That’s been our lifeline,’ said Haas. With wine sales down in this economy, how is that going to affect the industry, I ask? "It’s inevitable that there will be

extra inventory by year’s end," said Haas “I know we will. It will have a trickle down effect on growers who are already struggling.” Mindy Allen, owner of Custom Vineyard Application and Martinez Farming, whose clientele ranges from small wineries to large growers, voiced the same concern. With sluggish sales and stuck inventory, small wineries doing DTC business may not fulfill their contracts with large growers for the 2020 harvest. “It all comes down to the grower who’s invested in his vineyard and depends on these contracts," she worries. While most winemakers are focused on sales, Neeta Mittal, co-owner of LXV Wine, has a different take. “It’s time to look how the industry will change once the crisis is over," she insisted. “The number of visitors won’t change. What will change is people in the comfort of their home doing virtual tasting." That, she thinks, may be the new normal. 

Colony Magazine | May 2020

A Tas ty n w o D p i r T & e t s a T y y r o m e Colon M na a c i r e m A f o e t s a aT Lane Barbie Butz


ecipes in cookbooks, on snips of yellowed paper, or on pages from newspapers, magazines, and 3x5 cards, seemingly written in “code”, fill a drawer in my kitchen. If we like to cook, this is what we do. We save recipes! I inherited my grandmother’s recipe boxes, my mother’s recipe boxes, and my aunt’s recipes. Going through them was a “trip down memory lane.” I came across recipes with handwritten notes on them that warmed my heart. They were all great cooks, not gourmet cooks, just great, down-to-earth, comfort-food, good cooks. I have met other great cooks through the years and one of them was Joanne Joyce Faulconer. Joanne and I met through our Kappa Alpha Theta San Luis Obispo/Central Coast Alumnae Chapter in 1989. She moved several years ago and I have lost track of her, but I still enjoy using the cookbook she put together in 1990 for her family and friends titled “Eat Darlings!” We had many wonderful dinners with Joanne and her husband Hal in their lovely Atascadero home. May 2020 | Colony Magazine

Note: This first recipe was being shared before White Castle Sliders were in the freezer area of our supermarkets!

White Castle Sliders

Ingredients: • 2 lb. Ground round steak • 1 box (2 envelopes) Lipton onion soup mix • ½ tsp. coarse black pepper • 1/3 c. Italian style dry bread crumbs • 2 eggs • 2 pkg. Pepperidge Farm dinner rolls • 4 Tbsp. Dijon mustard • 2 c. finely chopped onions (that have been sauteed in oil or margarine until golden brown Directions: Mix together all ingredients, except the sauteed onions, mustard and rolls. Pat out on a large cookie sheet (one with sides). Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 10 minutes. Pour off any grease. Spread mustard on top. Cut into 2-inch squares and put between buns. Put 1 tablespoon chopped, sauteed onions on top of meat and

top with second half of bun. Place the dinner rolls back into the same slots on the foil tray they came in. Wrap tightly with foil and refrigerate until ready to serve. Can be frozen also. Bake at 350 degrees, wrapped in the foil, for 15 to 20 minutes. If frozen, defrost first and bake at 300 degrees until hot, about 25 minutes. Note: My husband, John, grew up in Ohio and says he “grew up on White Castles”. In fact, before we had those little sliders in the markets our kids ordered a batch from the company for his birthday. He loved them and said they brought back many memories of going to a White Castle in Columbus with his dad. He later “lived on them” when he attended Ohio State! This next recipe is one of my favorites, especially for a big party. You probably have seen similar crock pot versions, but I still like this original one.

• 1 Tbsp. crushed (slightly) bay leaves • 1 Tbsp. cracked black pepper • 1 tsp. salt (or to taste) • 1 Tbsp. oregano leaves, crushed • 1 Tbsp. rosemary, crushed • 1 Tbsp. summer savory • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder • 2 qt. beef broth Directions: Place meat in a large roaster. Pour broth over meat. Add spices to meat and broth. Cover tightly with foil or a tight fitting lid and place in a 275 degree oven. Cook for 8 to 9 hours. Check every 2 hours and add a bit more pepper each time. Check broth. If needed, add more. Cool and refrigerate overnight. The next day, remove the fat from the broth and shred the meat with 2 sharp forks. Mix the meat and broth together; refrigerate meat and broth together. Refrigerate or freeze at this point. When ready to use, warm until hot. For a buffet, serve from a chafing dish. Miniature French rolls are excellent. A hot sweet mustard should be served on the side. Also Ingredients: serve with your favorite cole slaw • 7 to 10 lb. Boneless chuck roast recipe. 

French Dip Beef | 31

s i t a h W Distance Learning? | Education

Jim J.

Brescia, Ed.D


any students, parents, teachers, and the general public have recently asked just what distance learning is in response to COVID-19. A primary definition is that school staff are creating opportunities for students that implement learning from home in place of traditional in-person instruction typically conducted in a school setting. People should not expect distance education to replace in-person instruction completely or even match instruction hourfor-hour. Distance education is an opportunity for instruction to continue, maintain a connection, create some normalcy, and combat isolation. San Luis Obispo County schools implemented distance learning shortly after schools placed in-person instruction on hiatus. This type of learning must be flexible and will not always match the traditional 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. schedule previously practiced through in-person instruction.

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Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think. ~Albert Einstein

School districts, charters, private, and parochial schools have implemented various collaborative groups that are meeting via video chat to curate daily lessons by grade level, subject matter, and student need. Most Local Education Agencies (LEAs) have asked students to engage in structured academic lessons and social-emotional community-based lessons. Many LEA activities throughout the county are being delivered through Google Classroom, incorporating videos of the teachers speaking and reading directly to students, as well as curating a wide variety of learning resources. Organized around Google Sites, Google Classrooms are shared with families and provide daily learning

for different grade levels. Zoom is another platform in place throughout San Luis Obispo County. A challenge for our still very rural county has been accessing devices and connectivit y. Many parts of our county have limited connectivity resulting in traditional packets of work for students to complete with limited assistance f rom school staff. Additional challenges include varying levels of student workspace in homes, distractions that are some-

times more evident in a home setting, and the stress of our current medical emergency. The San Luis Obispo County Office of Education recommends that families provide a routine that includes non-instructional time, continues to focus on basic needs such as healthy food, mental health, exercise, and physical distancing. All schools in our county, Cuesta College and Cal Poly, operate food distribution in conjunction with the San Luis Obispo County Food Bank. Emergency childcare centers are running to serve first responders and essential workers. Please consult for additional information. I have observed public employees across our county stepping up to meet the needs of the community and consider it an honor to serve as your County Superintendent of Schools. ď Ž

Online learning is not the next big thing, it is the now big thing.

~ Donna J. Abernathy

Colony Magazine | May 2020

Good Reads for Shelter-at-Home


s we continue to walk through this pandemic and try to find rhyme or rhythm to our days, I find comfort in escaping in a good book. I have always loved reading; a book in my hand and a quiet place, whether it be on the beach or in a comfy chair, seemed to be the perfect setting. However, as busy as we all are, I have found over the last few years that magical setting is hard to come by, so for me, I turn to Audible these days. I appreciate different points of view, values, topics, stories, and authors. The following are some of the ones in my library that I have truly enjoyed, learned from, and recommend in no particular order. "Gift of the Sea" by Anne Morrow Lindbergh This 1955 classic has been my go-to summer read for many years. Anne shares her reflection on a life well-loved, and the lessons she has learned. Her perspective about being a woman and the importance of taking care of yourself, following your passions, independence, loving your husband and family is timeless. Appreciation for the quiet and the chaotic moments and cherish everything in between.

May 2020 | Colony Magazine

"The Moment of Lift" by Melinda Gates Melinda takes us on a very personal, humble, and powerful journey into her life and her philanthropic work through the Gates Foundation. She introduces us to some of the incredible people around the world that have inspired her and her mission to empower women. Melinda's take on feminism and equality (human equality) is refreshing and optimistic. "The Ones We've Been Waiting For" by Charlotte Alter Charlotte gives us a youthful perspective on the new generation of politicians and the life events that impacted and shaped who they are today. It is an insightful look into some of our current young leaders and why they chose to run for office. Whether you agree or disagree with the author it is a call to action to get involved if you want to see change and be the change you are seeking. "Stephen King, On Writing" by Stephen King A unique look into the mind of Steven King, through his own words. He shares an intimate look into his life, struggles with addic-

tion, marriage, family, and his love for writing that started as a young boy. This personalized teaching is an inspiration for those who love to write, feel the urge to write, or have a story to tell. King makes you feel like he wrote this just for you. "The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion A beautiful, honest look at life after loss. The author shares her thoughts, memories, and feelings as she walks through the death of her husband of forty years and caring for an ill adult child. As Joan grieves, she reflects on their journey together as a family and the importance of living and appreciating a life well experienced and loved. "Talking to Strangers" by Malcolm Gladwell In this book, Malcolm walks us through his unique perspective on how people communicate and interact with one another, key focus on strangers. He gives his opinion and insight into some of the cases and stories that have made headlines across the world. A bit controversial but challenges the way of thinking whether you agree or disagree with his theories. ď Ž | 33

We Are Not All in the Same Boat... Nic & Hayley Mattson


ay, 45, Shelter-at-Home, but who is counting. As we continue to live our life through what has turned out to be the year of the Coronavirus and our sixth week of economic uncertainty, we slowly start to place one foot at a time onto the sand beneath us that sways with the ocean tides. This once firm foundation now changes on a daily basis and remains somewhat a mystery of what is still to come. And although we are all deeply impacted by this health crisis, and experiencing some level of apprehension, pressure, tension, and stress. It is imperative that we also remember, we are all in this together; however, we are not all traveling in the same boat. That is an interesting perspective if you stop and think about it. But what does it mean, and why is it important to remember? The sentiment allows you to remain open, humble, and grateful. Open to the understanding that we are all facing our own worst and best days and, at times, have no idea how to respond or function. Humble, to the notion that things will and must get better, they may not look like what you expected or would have approved. Nonetheless, you have people, friends, and a community that will stand with you and offer support, but you do have to ask. Grateful for the little things that may have been a burden at one time or another, now offer the joy of familiarity and stability. Each of these, however, can always be followed with a counterproductive response as well. That is where the remembrance of the understanding that we are not all in the same boat, resonates the most. “To get over one’s self is an act of courage, love, and understanding,” I read many years ago. It is truer today than it was then. It takes courage to recognize

that your challenges, maybe someone else’s best day. You have love to offer in your own way, no matter what level it may be on. Understanding that this too shall pass, and in the meantime, offer someone help. We all should give ourselves and others some grace, love, and patience. For none of us have been through anything like this before. We are all doing the best we can, but that does not give us a pass to take out our fears or frustrations on others. In these trying times, we can choose to accept that we will all respond differently, and that is okay. That is what makes our world so special and unique, and that is not something that will ever change no matter what we are going through. Accept others for where they are at, be kind, and gentle. As we start to emerge from this pandemic, this is the time we all need each other the most. So even though we may not be traveling in the same boat, if you need a life vest, paddle, jacket, or some food, we will be here. We will be sure to listen, not to judge, and we humbly ask for the same in return. We Are Not All in the Same Boat… I heard that we are all in the same boat, but it’s not like that. We are in the same storm, but not in the same boat. Your ship could be shipwrecked, and mine might not be. Or vice versa. For some, quarantine is optimal. A moment of reflection, of re-connection, easy in flip flops, with a cocktail or coffee. For others, this is a desperate financial & family crisis. For some that live alone, they’re facing endless loneliness. While for others, it is peace, rest & time with their mother, father, sons & daughters. With the $600 weekly increase in unemployment, some are bringing in more money to their households than they were working. Others are working more hours for less money due to pay cuts or loss in sales. Some families of 4 just received $3400 from

the stimulus, while other families of 4 saw $0. Some were concerned about getting a certain candy for Easter, while others were concerned if there would be enough bread, milk, and eggs for the weekend. Some want to go back to work because they don’t qualify for unemployment and are running out of money. Others want to kill those who break the quarantine. Some are home spending 2-3 hours/day helping their child with online schooling while others are spending 2-3 hours/day to educate their children on top of a 10-12-hour workday. Some have experienced the near-death of the virus; some have already lost someone from it and some are not sure if their loved ones are going to make it. Others don’t believe this is a big deal. Some have faith in their God and expect miracles during this 2020. Others say the worst is yet to come. So, friends, we are not in the same boat. We are going through a time when our perceptions and needs are completely different. Each of us will emerge, in our own way, from this storm. It is very important to see beyond what is seen at first glance. Not just looking, actually seeing. See beyond the political party, beyond biases, beyond the nose on your face. Do not underestimate the pain of others if you do not feel it. Do not be judge the good life of one; do not condemn the bad life of another. Let us not judge the one who lacks, as well as the one who exceeds. We are all on different ships during this storm, experiencing a very different journey. Let everyone navigate their own route with respect, empathy, and responsibility. ~ Unknown author 

Thank you for being #StrongerTogether 76 Gas Station ................................. 15 American West Tire & Auto .............. 09 Atascadero Chamber ....................... 13 Atascadero Pet Hospital .................. 05 California Mid-State Fair .................. 02 Five Star Rain Gutters ...................... 05

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Frontier Floors .................................. 15 Greg Malik Real Estate Group ...10, 11 H&R Block ........................................ 07 Hearing Aid Specialists Of The Central Coast ........................ 03 Hedges Insurance ........................... 05

DIRECTORY TO OUR ADVERTISERS Colony Magazine is brought to you by Hope Chest Emporium ................... 17 John Donovan Insurance & Financial Services, Inc .................. 22 Megan's CBD Market ...................... 07

Mid State Solid Waste & Recycling.................................07, 09 Morro Bay Hearing Aid Center ........ 09 Nick's Painting ................................. 07

North County Pilates ........................ 07 O'Conner Pest Control ..................... 13 Odyssey World Cafe ......................... 13 Robert Fry M.D. ................................ 15 Rountree Resales ............................. 15 San Luis Obispo County

Office of Education .......................... 33 Solarponics ...................................... 05 The Natural Alternative .................... 22 Writing Support Group ................... 17 Wyatt Wicks Finish Carpentry, Inc. .. 09

Colony Magazine | May 2020

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Oh, say can you see, By the dawn's early light, What so proudly we hailed At the twilight's last gleaming? Whose broad stripes and bright stars, Through the perilous fight, O'er the r amparts we watched, Were so gallantly streaming? And the rockets' red glare, The bombs bursting in air, Gave proof through the night That our flag was still there. O say, does that star-spangled Banner yet wave O'er the land of the free And the home of the br ave?