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A Monthly Publication Delivered to Over 40,000 Residents

Photos by: Jennifer Neys


To find SPOOKTACULAR HALLOWEEN events, please visit page 20.

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1961  2011

Over 440*reasons


to choose Don & Norma Flaskerud as YOUR Realtor!

Happy 50th Anniversary,


City of Pleasan t Hill! We have been prou d Pleasant Hill residen ts for 34 of those 50 year s!

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October 2011

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Value up to $260 or insurance will pay. Offer includes initial exam, consultation and necessary xrays. New Patients Only. *Offer expires 60 days from receipt

A $300 value (tray system) at an introductory offer with completed new patient exam, xrays and cleaning. Amanda Backstrom DMD, Inc.

Value up to $129 or insurance will pay. Offer applies after a completed exam and xrays. Does not include periodontal cleaning. New Patients only. * for non-insured patients

DRE #s — Don: 00971602, Norma: 00867031

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October 2011

United Mt. Diablo Athletic Foundation’s (UMDAF) 3rd annual Save Our Sports 5k will be held on Sunday, October 9th at Newhall Park in Concord. During the past 2 years the race has earned over $150,000 and attracted 4,000 participants. SunPower, the company installing the solar arrays at all Mt. Diablo school sites, is supporting the foundation by making a monetary contribution and will bring a team of employees to run the race. In addition to more vendor booths this year, Sports Basement will provide “goodie bags” containing discount coupons for the participants.  According to Marci Finley, head of the 5K Committee, “the student athletes have attended one of each of the local city council meetings inviting the members and instituted a challenge to see which city will bring the most employees to the race.” A DJ will be present to add music to the event and the day will conclude

Run for High School Sports with entertainment by the Polynesian dancers from Mt. Diablo and a dance party. Although the race is designed to be a fun, family event, its purpose is to raise funds for the preservation of high school sports. “Last year, the race did well but we did not break even with the contribution collections and expenses for athletics in the high schools. We were able to continue this year due to the reserve created by the original $100,000 donation of Steve Gonsalvez and Conco Cement. There is a possibility that if we have a second deficit year, the district could shut down sports. It is vitally important that the community support UMDAF by making contributions and attending fundraisers. We have to be a self-sustaining entity for sports to continue in the district,” said Finley. It will take 1.2 million dollars to keep athletics in the 6 Mt. Diablo high schools for the 2011/2012

season. Last April, UMDAF held a “Vegas Night” fundraiser at the Concord Hilton. The fundraiser, sponsored by UMDAF and the Mt. Diablo high school athletic booster clubs, drew over 200 participants and raised over $12,000 for high school athletics. Board Member Kent Caldwell said, “UMDAF is tentatively planning on having the next Vegas Night event in late August or early September 2012 as a kick-off to the next high school sports year.” More information on this event is

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forthcoming. Registration for the 5K will be open online at until 5:00pm on October 8th and available race day at Newhall Park. Registration fees are $25 for a pre-registered runner and $30 day of the event; $10 for the Kiddie Run/Walk. Competitive run begins at 9am and the Fun Run/Walk begins at 9:45am. The Kiddie Run/Walk (8 & under) begins at 10:30am. For more information, please visit the website at


Together we can keep high school sports in our schools!

5K RUN Benefiting MDUSD HIgh School Sports

October 9, 2011

Newhall Park, Concord Help Us Raise Money for High School Sports All Ages Welcome Competitive 5K, Fun Run & Walk & Kiddie Event Food & Entertainment Available

Register at

Photos by: Jennifer Neys

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October 2011


It’s That Time of Year Again

By Julie Ross – there’s ample time to prepare for the Yep, time to get ready for that spe27th annual event in 2012. You do-itcial event combining medieval history, yourself types will want check out the woodworking, physical science and our pumpkin catapult plans found on Ask. favorite member of the cucurbitaceae com. family, the pumpkin. Who knew medieval siege weapons Mark your calendar for the first would come back into vogue? We are weekend in November, when the 26th so lucky. Anyway, the Delaware event Annual World Championship Punkin (which, by the way, includes a Miss Chunkin contest will be held in Sussex Punkin Chunkin Pageant - and what County, Delaware, right on the heels of young lady could resist going after that Halloween. title?) raises a lot of money for charity. So, anyone All make and manner of home-made pumpkinhere in our community who needs to come up with a launching devices will be put into action by eager participants to see who can hurl a pumpkin the great- fall fundraiser, here you go. Happy Halloween and enjoy those pumpkins. est distance. You will be interested to learn the world The deadline for entries in the Pleasant Hill record punkin chunk was 5,545.43 feet, which, for rhyming challenge was midnight on September 23. you non-math specialists out there, is farther than a The winner will be announced here next month. mile! (note to self: use a pneumatic cannon) There might still be time to reserve a campsite near Thanks to everyone who entered! Please send any questions or comments to the venue. However, it’s way too late to register your pumpkin launcher; the chunkin field for this fall’s com- Send any questions, comments and your entries to me at by midnight on petition is already full. You’ll just have to haul out your September 23 and stay tuned for the announcement catapults, ballistas and cannons next year. of the winner in November. What, no trebuchet in the garage? Not to worry

Cars, Bikes and Kids Converge! Share the Road Cautiously

With school back in session the roadways are busy with rushed drivers mixed with children biking and walking to school. In three separate incidents, three Pleasant Hill Middle School students were hit by cars while bicycling to and from school over the span of a few days at the end of September. All sustained injuries and one student has yet to return to school. Drivers and cyclists cannot be too cautious! Here are some basic but important reminders: Drivers: • Don’t be in a hurry. Leave plenty of time to get where you are going. • Stop at all cross walks and stop signs and look both ways. Don’t roll through! • Use extreme caution when backing out of driveways.

• Keep your windshields clean. • Do not use your cell phone. • Give pedestrians the right-of-way. Cyclists: • Always wear a helmet. It is the law for persons under 18yrs of age. • Obey all traffic signs and signals. • Ride on the right side of the road. • Never wear headphones when riding. • Ride in a single file. • Make eye contact with drivers to be sure you have been seen. • Beware of cars backing out of driveways. Please use extreme caution. Our children’s lives depend on it.

• Art, Jazz and Wine....................................... page 6 • Soup Time!................................................... page 11 • As Russ Sees It.............................................. page 13 • Alhambra’s Sports 16-17

Independent & Locally Owned

PUBLISHERS Becky Coburn, Jennifer Neys, Elena Hutslar A Monthly Publication delivered to over 40,000 Homes and Businesses in Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Pacheco, Lafayette and Walnut Creek

ADVERTISING SPORTS EDITOR Chuck Nan GRAPHIC DESIGN Trish Heaney, Debra Wilson, Sarah Birdwell COPY EDITOR Alison Clary

View the Focus online at Website:

CONTACT INFORMATION: Community Calendar:

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Content & General Inquiries:

6680 Alhambra Ave. Box #132 Martinez, CA 94553 Phone: (925) 335 - NEWS (6397)

MISSION STATEMENT The Community Focus is a free, independent, monthly publication dedicated to highlighting the vibrancy of the local businesses and residents while strengthening and building connections within our community.

• Halloween Haunts 19 • Lose the Lawn 22 • Live Music Listings........................................... page 24 • Teen Scene......................................................... page 30

October 2011

Breast Cancer Month By Tiffany Svahn, MD 1pm in the Grand Court. Breast cancer About 1 survivors will be recognized by their in 8 women oncologists and surgeons and featured in in the United a Surviving in Style Fashion Show. States (12%) The day prior, on October 15th, will develop “The Many Faces of Breast Cancer” invasive breast will take place at the Lesher Center for cancer over the the Arts in Walnut Creek, from 10am course of her – 12pm. This educational community lifetime. Breast event will focus on the unique needs cancer is a very and issues of survivors and will provide important health issue for women – it the latest information on breast canis the most common cancer, and the cer. Heather Quarterman from KKDV second most common cause of cancer 92.1 FM will be the moderator. Medical death. In 2010, there were more than experts will speak on issues effecting 200,000 new diagnoses and more than survivors and offer insight into treat39,000 deaths in the United States. The ment options and lifestyle changes that good news is that death rates have been decreasing since 1990 as a result of treat- can help with rehabilitation. There is no ment advances, earlier detection through charge for the event, however reservations are required as seating is limited. screening, and increased awareness. RSVP at 925-677-5041, ext. 260. This year, Diablo Valley Oncology, Dr. Svahn is an active supporter of Sun Valley Shopping Center and Arthur the American Cancer Society’s MakJ. Gallagher Insurance are partnering Strides Against Breast Cancer and ing together to host a special Breast Relay for Life. She will be part of the Cancer Awareness event entitled “Pink opening ceremony at St. Mary’s College’s Up The Mall.” Throughout the month Relay for Life on October 7th beginof October, Sun Valley merchants will ning at 3pm in Moraga. Dr. Svahn is a feature “Pink” themed merchandise Medical Oncologist and Breast Cancer and discount offers. Merchants will also Specialist at Diablo Valley Oncology in help raise Breast Cancer Awareness by Pleasant Hill and San Ramon. She can showcasing the color pink via window dressings and lights. The highlight of the be reached at 925-677-5041 or at www. event will take place on October 16th at

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Race for the Cure

Lindsey Lombardi and Lauren Burns wanted to make a difference in the fight against breast cancer. On September 25, they joined thousands of others in San Francisco for the annual Komen (Affiliate Name) Race for the Cure®. They collected donations that support local breast cancer screening, treatment, education and outreach. After her race Lindsey remarked, “My experience was great because I knew I was running for a good cause and I can’t wait to do it again next year.”

Friends of Faith “Bubbles for Boobs”

Join Roxanne Cole (Roxx on Main) and Sean Andrade (Andrade Wine Group), as they host “Bubbles for Boobs,” at Roxx on Main, Wednesday, October 19th from 6:30 to 9:30pm. The evening includes a fabulous silent auction, raffle and live music. The $39 per person tickets will include a selection of champagne and sparkling wines along

with unique and delicious tapas (small plates), especially prepared for this fun and flirty evening of fundraising. Proceeds benefit Friends of Faith (Fancher), Inc., a Bay Area non-profit dedicated to providing support and information to the uninsured and under-served women in our community. Roxanne Cole explained, “We are very pleased to sponsor and host Bubbles for Boobs. When the topic of breast cancer comes up in daily conversation, it is apparent just how far-reaching this disease is. It seems like everyone you speak with has either personally experienced breast cancer or knows someone among family or friends who is fighting the disease. Friends of Faith is providing a great service for so many local women and they are doing a wonderful job carrying forward Faith Fancher’s vision. Roxx on Main is very excited to be able to help with this wonderful event.” Tickets can be purchased in advance at Roxx on Main (627 Main Street, Martinez) or on-line by visiting www. Come have a great time while supporting Bubbles for Boobs!

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Experience Pleasant Hill like never before as the Pleasant Hill Art, Jazz & Wine Festival kicks off its ninth year! This year’s two-day event, held on October 8 and 9, is the pride of the Pleasant Hill community. The festival will run from 10am to 6pm on Saturday, and from 10am to 5pm on Sunday. Between 8,000 and 10,000 visitors are expected to attend the festival, located along Crescent Drive in downtown Pleasant Hill. As they enjoy a wide array of wonderful art and entertainment, guests are welcome to peruse the wares of more than 75 artists and sample a great selection of fine local wines and premium beer.

October 2011

Art, Jazz & Wine...Wow!

The popular Premium Wine tent provides an opportunity to enjoy tasting some great premium wines. Booths of local artists will line the two-block section of the festival streets while children of all ages can enjoy the festivities in a fun, family-friendly environment. The following bands are slated to perform throughout the two-day event: Saturday: Jambalaya Jazztet, King Cosby Group, featuring Joyce Grant, En Vivo, Aja Vu. Sunday: Elizabeth Hunnicutt, Delta Dogs and Cover2Cover  The Pleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce and the City of Pleasant Hill, along with community leaders and volunteers,

continue to make this event a huge success. The Pleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce strives to promote and meet local business needs, provide added value to its members and enhance the quality of life within the community of Pleasant Hill.

If you would like more information about Pleasant Hill’s Art, Jazz and Wine Festival please phone the Pleasant Hill Chamber Office at 925-687-0700 or check the website:Â

Pleasant Hill Turns 50!

A lot has happened in the city during these years! Faye Donoghu, Margi Alkire, and Karin Giblin have been working on a book chronicling the city’s history. “It was great to have our new local newspaper as a resource,� affirmed Margi.  “Research is one of the challenges for writing a book, and we appreciate the help of the Focus.� The City of Pleasant Hill will have its anniversary Gala Dinner on Saturday, November 12, at the Contra Costa Country Club.  This will be a black-tie formal event.  At this event, the history book will be unveiled.  Then on Sunday, there will be a free, informal open house at City Hall, full of activities, exhibits, and introductions. Happy Birthday, Pleasant Hill! Pictured above is Faye Donoghu, Margi Alkire, and Karin Giblin useing the Focus to research their book The History of the City of Pleasant Hill, 1962-2011   1961  2011


Pleasant Hill turns 50 this November...


Join the celebration of our

GREAT YEARS! Sponsored by Allied Waste Services

There are multiple opportunities for all family members to join in our grand celebration this fall....

Contests Elementary Students Art Contest For Grades K through 5— $400 in prize money to be won. Theme: “My Favorite Place in Pleasant Hill� Entry deadline: October 17 Middle and High School Writing Contest For Grades 6 through 12— $875 in prize money to be won. Theme: “Your City at 50— Past, Pleasant & Future� Entry deadline: October 5

Entry forms for both contests are available online at

Gala Celebration Dinner!

Open House at City Hall Sunday, November 13 10am–5pm Free event for all Pleasant Hill residents. Festivities will include:

Saturday, November 12, 6:00pm 'til late! Contra Costa Country Club  Tickets, $95 per person City Hall.

Dinner is Black-Tie optional  Entertainment by Michael Fender  Champagne reception

 Complimentary wine at each table  Free commemorative photograph  Free book — 50 Years of Pleasant Hill History

— a wealth of information about people, places, and events, with photos, in Pleasant Hill over the past 50 years.

50th Programs at the Library 

Pleasant Hill Reads “James and the Giant Peach� by Roadl Dahl—The Pleasant Hill Library has selected this as a citywide book read during October. The book was first published in 1961. Extra copies available at the library. Moonlight Movie “James & the Giant Peach� — Friday, October 7 on the lawn at City Hall, 7-8:30pm.

Historical photographic exhibit depicting 50 years of Pleasant Hill history Art Exhibit by the East Bay Artists Guild Winners of the Art, Writing and Photographic contests on display Music and light food and refreshments Family entertainment

Join the FUN! For more information email

1961  2011


Pleasant Hill’s 50th anniversary

 November 12, 2011

  801 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill

No host bar—6:00pm Dinner—7:30pm Program—8:30pm Dancing until wee hours of the night Entertainment by Michael Fender

tie Black nal optio


Tickets on sale at City Hall

October 2011

Mayor’s Message By the time you read this, we’ll have finished the city’s Summer Concert series, concluding with the City of Pleasant Hill’s September 11 commemoration, and also completed Pleasant Hill’s Community Service Day and the city’s popular Plaza Concert Series. The 9th annual Art, Jazz & Wine Fest is right around the corner (October 8-9 in downtown Pleasant Hill), and so is the Pleasant Hill Foundation’s fundraising Golf Classic (October 10). Then we will be only six weeks or so from the great celebration of Pleasant Hill’s 50th birthday on November 12th. These

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David Durant, Mayor of Pleasant Hill activities highlight only part of what keeps Tina Young, Lee Palmer, Kevin Hennessy, our city such a fantastic and vibrant place Reverend Peter Woodward, Ken Housfel, to live and work. We have so much “comMarti Martin, Phil Madruga, the memmunity” happening all the time. bers of Pleasant Hill CERT, and a host of I want to thank all of those who others. I want to thank the sponsors: The helped make the September 11 Commem- Pleasant Hill Ecumenical Clergy Group, oration so touching and special: ReverCity of Pleasant Hill, Pleasant Hill Police ends Weidmann and White, along with Department and the K-9 Unit, Pleasant their colleagues Father Joyce, Reverends Hill Recreation & Park District, Pleasant Smith and Barnes, the Boy Scouts, Nicole Hill Rotary Club, Pleasant Hill Lions Club, Palmeri, the Children’s Choir and DirecPleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce, and tor, Carolyn Moeller, the Adult Choir and Director, Dr. Bret Peppo, Walt Beveridge, long-time resident Pam Brady, Jane Baxley, Matt Rinn, Steve Lack, Kelly Calhoun, On Saturday, September 17th, the Kelli Guis, Jim Nunes, June Catalano, city of Pleasant Hill was in front of the Dennis Donaghu, Faye Donaghu, Trevor lens of 40 local amateur phoDonaghu, Bob Turcious, Martin Nelis, tographers. As part of the City’s

Boy Scouts of America. These people proved, once again, how a small group of people of good will and vision can come together and make a difference! What an honor to have been able to participate. What a joy to see such selfless service exemplify the theme of the day, “one world, one community, remembering, engaging community, giving back.” Wow! Best, David Durant

A Day in the Life in PH

CERT’s Annual Exercise

50th anniversary celebration, a photo contest, led by Dick Hixson of Hixson Photography, was designed to express the character of Pleasant Hill within a 24-hour period. The top 20 photographs will be on

display at City Hall in November during the City Hall Open House. The 3 chosen best will receive Wolf Camera gift certificates in the amounts of $500, $300 and $200 to the first, second and third place winners. A sample of some of the winning photographs will also be published in the November issue of the Community Focus.

Movie Night

On Saturday, October 15th from 6pm until 10pm, the City of Pleasant Hill Community Emergency Response Team, (CERT) will be conducting a disaster response exercise. Pleasant Hill CERT is a FEMA affiliated organization sponsored by the Contra Costa Fire Protection District, and operates under the oversight of the Pleasant Hill Police Department.  The majority of the exercise will take place at the Pleasant Hill Seventh Day Adventist Church on Grayson Road.   Conducting the exercise at night will make the response to a simulated major earthquake along the Hayward fault more challenging for the team as it sets up an Incident Command Post, which will include sections for Operations, Planning, Communications, Medical Treatment,

Logistics and Administration.  Several teams will practice their search and rescue, first aid, fire suppression, medical transport, and radio communication skills in the surrounding area.  If you see helmeted figures with flashlights and glow sticks in the neighborhood around Twinview Drive and Strand Avenue, wish them well; it is your Pleasant Hill CERT volunteers making sure they will be ready to help their neighbors when the time comes. For information about the Pleasant Hill team go to the city website, www., and click on Emergency Preparedness.  Read stories about CERT in action in communities across the United States by checking out www. citizencorps/   

The animated film of James and the Giant Peach will be airing as October’s Moonlight Movie! Enjoy this outdoor screening of the animated feature film of Roald Dahl’s classic story. Friday, October 7th from 7pm-8:30pm, City Hall lawn.

City Calendar of Events City Council / Redevelopment October 3, 17 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Council Chambers, 7:30pm Contact: 671-5267

Planning Commission October 11, 25 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Council Chambers, 7:30pm Contact: 671-5209

Civic Action Commission October 5 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Small Community Room, 6:30pm Contact: 671-5229

Zoning Administrator October 13, 27 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Comm. Development Dept. Conf. Room, 5:00pm Contact: 671-5209

Architectural Review Commission October 6, 20 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Large Community Room, 5:00pm Contact: 671-5209

Education Commission October 26 City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane Large Community Room, 7:00pm Contact: 671-5229

October 10 City Hall Offices Closed for Columbus Day For Confirmation Visit:

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PLEASANT HILL CHAMBER NEWS Pleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce 10/4 - Computer Sales and Service “Customer Appreciation Day” 1936 Linda Drive, Pleasant Hill. 925-827-1200 5pm – 6:30pm 10/6 - Ribbon Cutting and Open House Chelsea Brackett State Farm, 2261 Morello Ave Ste A, Pleasant Hill, 691-4948. Open House 3pm-7pm, Ribbon Cutting 5pm

10/19 - October Mixer - Mr. Lucky’s 2618 Pleasant Hill Road, Pleasant Hill 5:30pm - 7:30pm 10/24 - Government Affairs Committee Back Forty, 100 Coggins Dr., Pleasant Hill 5pm - 6pm. Please verify schedule at • 925-687-0700

10/7 - Ambassador Meeting- City Hall, 100 Gregory Lane, Pleasant Hill, 7:45am - 9am 10/8 & 9 - Art Jazz & Wine See the back page! 10/10 - Office closed for Columbus Day 10/13 - Waters Moving and Storage Ribbon Cutting, 37 Bridgehead Road, Martinez, 5pm

cALENDAR sponsored by

9/21 Mega Mixer

October 2011

MARTINEZ CHAMBER NEWS Martinez Chamber of Commerce 10/13 - Ribbon Cutting / 36 Year Anniversary Celebration at Waters Moving & Storage. 4-7pm. Ribbon Cutting at 5pm. 37 Bridgehead Road, Mtz. Proceeds benefit the Mtz. Historical Museum. 10/14 - 26th Annual Martinez Mayor’s Cup Golf Classic – Fri. 10:30am – 7pm. Cohosted with Main Street Martinez at Roddy Ranch Golf Club, 1 Tour Way, Antioch. For more info call the Chamber: (925) 228-2345 or Main Street Martinez: (925) 228-3577.

ber. Great Networking, Food, Fun, Raffle Prizes (bring a raffle prize and have your business announced!) Coming Up on November 3rd, 5-Chamber Business Expo, Thursday 4-7pm at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 45 John Glenn Drive, Concord. Call the Martinez Chamber for more information and to reserve your booth. Please verify schedule at • 925-228-2345

10/20 - Educational Series – Marketing for the Holidays, 12pm -1pm. Presented by Marie Knutson of the UPS Store. 11:30. John Muir Best Western Inn, 445 Muir Station Rd.; $10 Members; Non-Members: $20 includes lunch. RSVP (925) 228-2345 or email info@ 10/27 - Chamber Mixer- 5:30 – 7:30pm. AAA, 1276 S. California Blvd., Walnut Creek. Co-hosted with the Walnut Creek Cham-

cALENDAR sponsored by

Ribbon Cuttings Handbag Store

Photo by

The new Handbag Store carries and hand selects designer inspired handbags. It is your go-to boutique to find accessories that will pair well with your existing wardrobe such as scarves, sunglasses, wallets, jewelry and of course gorgeous handbags galore. The Handbag store offers famous handbags for all the seasons. Get
ready to hear, “Where did you purchase that bag? It’s gorgegous!”
“Gorgeous” is their motto.
Check the Handbag store often as they offer weekly sales! Like them on Facebook. 1252 Pine St, Martinez,
Store hours Sat.10-5pm & Sun. 11-3:00pm.

TJ’s Cafe

Photo by

26th Annual Mayor’s Cup Golf Classic October 14, 2011

Join us for a festive afternoon at the award winning, par 72 
Roddy Ranch Golf Course in Antioch. Fabulous hosted holes & activities, great raffle prizes, followed by an amazing auction. Win prizes such as $10,000, a TV, American Airline tickets, and much more! 10:30am: Registration, Putting Contest, BBQ Lunch 12:00pm: Shotgun Start, On-Course Food and Beverage 5:30pm: Post Golf Hors d’oeuvres, Awards and Raffle Individual Golfer $150, Foursome $600. To register online visit or call 228-2345

Hosted by Mtz Chamber of Commerce and Main St. Martinez.Portion of the proceeds benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Diablo Valley

Centrally located at the corner of Howe Road and Pacheco Blvd, TJ’s was once known as Mitch’s Club and then Pegg’s Western Grill until Doug Callahan bought it in June naming it TJ’s Café after his daughter, Tiffany Jessica. TJ’s Café is a family restaurant serving a variety of comfort food including Tbone steaks, bbq’d ribs, tri-tip, ground chuck burgers, lasagna and Salisbury steak. TJ’s boasts that 95% of their food is from scratch and their meats come from Weber Quality Meats, San Leandro; a place wellknown for their fresh meats. The cafe provides delivery service in Martinez & Pacheco, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner. TJ’s appreciates the nice welcome and the support they’ve received from the community. Doug says, “We are here for you, this is your restaurant and your kitchen. Great food is back!” 3210 Pacheco Blvd, Mtz, (925) 370-6379. M-F 5am-7pm, Sa & S 6am – 7pm, 3 meals, 7 days a week.

October 2011


Real Estate Update

By Nathan Hitchcock spite mortgage rates at never-before-seen A recent survey by Apartments. lows, low down payment with governcom revealed new insight into our curment-backed mortgage programs, and rent real estate market. Their findings? Many would-be homeowners are choos- most homes actually costing less to own than to rent, many would-be homeowning to rent not because they have to, but ers are simply saying, “No thanks, I’m because they want to. A primary factor happy renting.” in their decision is the lower financial risk that comes with not having to worry This growing trend is showing up clearly in the market numbers: home about maintenance and fluctuating prices are falling and rents are rising. home values. A home that cost about $650K at the I’ve spoken to dozens of former first of the year is now selling for about homeowners who have recently turned $600K. Conversely, the rental rate on to renting, and nearly all of them rethat same home has gone from about port having a heavy weight lifted from $2,500 per month to about $3,000 per their shoulders—they no longer need to month, with the homeowners typically worry about how much their home has getting to choose from multiple applidropped in value, or how they would cants in the first week. As a point of make ends meet if a major repair arose. comparison, the principal and interest This stands in stark contrast to the mortgage payment on that $600K house long-held view of homeownership as with a 10% down payment at today’s rate one of the iconic American dreams and of 4.375% would be $2,921 per month. renting is something you begrudgingly The story changes a bit when you do because of financial constraints or drop down in value. Homes in lowshort-term living situations. Now, deer price points are seeing their values buoyed by relatively strong investor demand. Conversely, as those homes become available as rentals, they put downward pressure on rental rates. The rental rates are still rising in those markets, but at a slightly slower pace. So if you are selling a home and have not been pleased with what the market thinks it is worth, it might be a good idea to consider renting it out. The first step is to find out what the home would rent for to see if it makes sense for you financially. A good place to start is, which is now tracking rental rates. This of course will just be a rough estimate. For a more accurate rental rate analysis, contact your favorite realtor or a local property management firm. This information is generally provided free of charge. Nathan Hitchcock is the managing broker of Hitchcock Realty, a residential real estate brokerage and property management firm in downtown Pleasant Hill. He can be reached at nathan@ or (925) 825-1100.

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Martinez Martini Festival

Photos by

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The Martinez Marina is strategically located between San Francisco Bay and the Delta, which makes it an ideal spot for transient and seasonal boaters as well as for longterm tenants to moor their boats. Unfortunately the Marina is currently in dire need of repairs and upgrades to its docks and breakwater as well as a maintenance dredge. At this time these issues pose significant concerns to the marina’s safety and naviga-

Mayor’s Message Rob Schroder, Mayor of Martinez bility if left unanswered. The Marina’s request to support replacement of the existing timber docks were installed in eastern breakwater, DBA expressed an the mid 1970’s and are now past their interest in exploring yet another option life expectancy. The breakwater walls for Phase I reconstruction. They are are in need of repairs and some replace- interested in not only replacing the eastments. Time is of the essence in order ern breakwater but also a redesign and to take advantage of the 2012 construcconstruction of the entrance to slow tion window. It is critical that the fundthe siltation rate at the entrance of the ing gap of $1.3 million is closed and the marina. If the city were to include these currently approved funds be released elements in the first phase, it would also by the Department of Boating and Wahave to dredge the existing usable area terways (DBW) to the city in order to to create cash flow to pay for the loan move forward with the remaining perfunds needed to complete the scope of mits and construction activities. work. The new DBW grant request of During recent discussions with $750,000 has been submitted as part of DBW regarding the city’s new grant the 2012/2013 DBW budget request to the State of California. We are also working with our private partner in looking at other lease ar The tour participants should arrangements and possible private capital rive with an empty stomach, comthat could help support dredging costs fortable shoes and a loose belt! The 17 participating restaurants are: Royal Thai Restaurant, Roxx on the Main, Smokey D’s, Whiskey The tour begins on Saturday, OctoLane, Family Kitchen, Pacifica ber 8, at 10am at the Shell Clubhouse on Pizza, The Ferry Street Station, Pacheco Blvd., and concludes at 4pm. Haute Stuff, Hot Dog Depot, Enjoy displays of vintage clothing, anLuigi’s, La Tapatia, LeGatique cars, refreshments and music by teau Elegant, Taqueria Los “The Spinning Wheel”. The tour includes Toros, Legal Grounds the 1890 Borland House (home of the Café, Lemon Grass, Martinez Museum), John Muir’s 1882 Main Street Sweets and Italianate Victorian Home, the Martinez California Magic Dinner Theater. Adobe and 7 private historical homes cir-

Restaurant Tour 2011 Join us for a delicious event! Sample tasty treats from 17 restaurants on quaint streets, in downtown Martinez on Saturday, October 8, from 1:30pm to 4:30pm. This event is sponsored by the Martinez recreation department. All ticket sales benefit a series of free after school performances for children: “Oohs, Ahs, and Giggles”. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased through the recreation department by calling: 372-3510 or the Martinez Senior Center at: 370-8770.

Oohs, Ahs and Giggles October 5, 12 &19 3:30pm-4:15pm City Hall Contact: 925-372-3510 Planning Commission Meeting October 11, 25 7:00pm-11:00pm Contact: 925-372-3500 Design Review Meeting October 12, 26 4:00pm-6:00pm Contact: 925-372-3500

and potentially reduce the city’s reliance on loan funding from DBW. In addition to our efforts in working with DBW and our private partner, we have met with our local representatives, Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, Senator Mark DeSaulnier, and Congressman Mike Thompson. All have toured the marina and are working on our behalf to secure the needed funding to rebuild. The marina is a critical component of the economic vitality of Martinez. It not only serves the boating public but also activities of the Department of Fish and Game, private research companies, spill response teams, Coast Guard, County Sheriff and CHP patrol boats, Sea Scout programs, fishing charters and a water venue for marine biology studies at local colleges.

Martinez Home Tour

City Calendar of Events Zoning Administrator Meeting October 5 (cxld), 19 3:00pm-4:00pm Contact: 925-372-3500

October 2011

Park, Recreation, Marina and Cultural Commission Meeting October 18 7:00pm-9:30pm Contact: 925-372-3510 Backyard Composting Workshop October 27 7:00pm-9:00pm Council Chambers, City Hall Contact: 925-372-3531 Registration: October 10, City Offices Closed for Columbus Day For Confirmation Visit:

ca 1880-1930. “The Hopeful Romantics” and “Ancestral Waters” will provide music at the John Muir House and the Foster Street Neighborhood respectfully. New to this year’s tour are period art and craft demonstrations including shoe making by Pablo Martinez of Carlos Shoe Repair, historical faux painting by Kelly Moore Paints and spinning by the Martinez Art Association. You can drive the tour route, or utilize a shuttle service that will provide uncrowded buses and frequent departures. Wear

comfortable shoes; once you reach the Foster Street Neighborhood, you may wish to walk the 7-block stretch of private homes.  The tour is self-paced so you can take time to enjoy the homes.  No children under 12 years of age please (infants may be carried in arms or a belly carrier). Due to the period of the homes, they are not wheelchair accessible, and we regret that taking pictures is not allowed inside the homes. Tickets are tax deductible and are $20 in advance or $25 at the Shell Club House on the day of the event.  If you have a party of 10, tickets are $18 each.  For more information please contact: Carolyn Duncan, Home Tour Chair at: 925 864 8457. For a complete list of stores selling tickets and to purchase online, visit Proceeds from the tour will benefit the Historical Society’s effort to restore the 1877 Old Train Depot in downtown Martinez.

October 2011

Pair Up Soup Time! October in northern California is often warm during the day and chilly at night. This menu addresses that dichotomy by starting with a cool white wine and finishing with a warm soup. This year, I am featuring a soup from the Dominican Republic, a country that shares the same island as Puerto Rico and Haiti in the waters between Florida and South America.

With La Sommelierre Maria Terry Start with an easy to find, aromat- soup that incorporates savory pork and ic white wine like torrontes, a hybrid of slightly sweet, sweet potatoes and remuscat of Alexandria and the mission quires a wine with plenty of big flavors. grape. Argentina produces torrontes at A hearty Livermore Valley merlot, like great prices. Lush aromas and flavors the estate wine from the Wood Family such as peach, apricot and lychee are Vineyards, will have just the right comtypical, and the moderate alcohol levels plementary peppery notes as well as a allow it to work with the Aleppo pepzippy acidity to stand up to the lime, per in the Sautéed Shrimp and Mozzavinegar and fresh herbs. rella appetizer. As usual, I make the trek through Sancocho de Frijoles is a bold the Caldecott Tunnel to Kermit Lynch in Berkeley or DuVin Wines in Alameda to buy Vin du Bugey-Cerdon. Its sweet, pink, bubbly nature makes Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Season shrimp to taste with salt and pepper. Add to skillet in INGREDIENTS batches if needed and cook until 1 lb. cooked pork, cut into 1” cubes they brown and just losing their 2 tbsp. olive oil translucency, about 2 minutes per 1 cup each onion and green bell pepside. Move skillet off the heat and per, chopped transfer shrimp to a warmed dish, 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced then tent with foil to keep warm. 8 garlic cloves, minced Meanwhile, drain cheese and add 1 can Italian tomatoes (with liquid), to the still-warm pan. Gently stir drain, seed, and chop tomatoes, mozzarella balls to coat and slightly reserving liquid warm, then scrape the pan to incor1 can of small white beans, rinsed porate the browned bits. Add moz12 oz. sweet potato, peeled and cut zarella to the shrimp. Season with into ¼ inch thick slices salt and pepper, and brighten with a 4 tbsp. white vinegar squeeze of lemon, if desired. Stir in Juice of one lime the red bell pepper. Serve immedi2 qts. of good quality chicken stock ately with crostini. 1 bay leaf Yield:  3-4 Appetizer Servings 1 tsp. oregano leaves

Sautéed Shrimp and Mozzarella INGREDIENTS ½ tsp. Aleppo pepper or other dried, crushed pepper with medium heat 4 tsp. amontillado sherry 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp. lemon zest 4 tsp. chopped fresh dill 1 lb. large shrimp, deveined, tail on (about 21-26 count per pound) 4 oz. small, fresh mozzarella balls (or a larger ball cut into small chunks) Kosher salt and pepper to taste Squeeze of lemon juice to taste 1 tsp. roasted red bell pepper, finely chopped DIRECTIONS Combine Aleppo pepper, sherry, olive oil, zest and dill in a mediumsize bowl. Add shrimp and toss to coat. Marinate for about 30 minutes.


it the only wine I pair with the super sweet chocolates of Halloween. This year try it with a Butterfinger. The salty, crunchy center creates a perfect harmony with the wine in both texture and flavor. So, go on. Pair Up! Maria Terry is a Certified Sommelier and Wine Educator in the San Francisco Bay Area. For more great wines and information please visit Maria’s website at

Sancocho de Frijoles

Saturdays, 8am-12pm • Thru Nov. 19

Oct 1: Join us in celebrating the city’s 50th anniversary! Special giveaways, prizes and deals! Plus kids’ Jump House & face painting. Oct 8: Pleasant Hill Jazz & Wine Fest. Oct 15 & 22: Guess the weight of the GIANT pumpkin & win a bag of produce! Oct 29: Kids wear a costume to the market and receive a free pumpkin! (While supplies last)

Downtown Pleasant Hill in front of the Century 16 Theatre


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Salt and pepper to taste 2 tbsp. each parsley and cilantro, chopped DIRECTIONS Heat olive oil in stockpot to medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper, jalapeno pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until vegetables are softened, 2-3 minutes. Add all remaining ingredients except fresh herbs. Reduce heat to low, cover pan, and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20-25 minutes longer until sweet potato is tender. Just before serving, discard bay leaf, add parsley and cilantro. Yield:  One Pot of Soup

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October 2011


Upcoming Senior Mental Health Day

By Jenny Lind, Senior Helpers forms of dementia are among the most 1. Memory changes that disrupt daily prevalent and deadly mental health life conditions facing the nation, and se2. Challenges in planning or solving niors are far and away the most at-risk problems population for both. We suggest fami3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks lies with senior loved ones living on at home, at work or at leisure their own learn what to look for so they 4. Confusion with time or place can catch any coming problems early 5. Trouble understanding visual images while there is time to do something and spatial relationships about it. 6. New problems with words in speak According to the Alzheimer’s Asing or writing sociation Early Detection Alliance, the 7. Misplacing things and losing the top 10 warning signs of coming demen- ability to retrace steps tia include: 8. Decreased or poor judgment 9. Withdrawal from work or social activities 249 Gregory Lane (925) 798-8788 10. Changes in mood and personality Research has repeatedly shown that 10/13 – Friday Flik – 1pm Winslow Center: 2590 Pleasant Hill Rd. featuring “Life As We Know It” (2010) About: regular mental and physical stimulation Holly is a caterer and Eric directs sports for a major network. Their first date was a are the best ways seniors can prevent nightmare, and they’re about to become family caretakers of their goddaughter. the onset of diseases like Alzheimer’s PG-13, 1 hour 52 mins. and dementia. Exercise for the body 10/21 - Taste of the Vine- 4pm-6pm keeps core muscle groups working Beverages plus light hors d’oeuvres will be served. Sponsored by the Chateaus of Pleasant Hill at 175 Cleaveland Rd. Presale: $7 presale / $10 at the door (purchase properly, and mental workouts keep tickets at Senior Center: 249 Gregory Lane) nerve receptors in the brain active and 10/21 - The Morning Joe- 10am-Noon. alert. The best, most effective prevenVFW: 1919 Wendell Lane, free! Miss our regular Friday Chef’s Lunch? Come to this tion strategies for seniors to reduce the “open house” to visit and catch up with friends! We will have coffee and light snacks; risk of mental health conditions are: feel free to bring something to share! • Daily Exercise – at least 30 minutes 10/25 - Looking For A Travel Roommate? per day at moderate intensity Looking for someone to join you on your next vacation? Whether you wish to avoid the single supplement or are seeking a traveling companion, this is a chance to • Eating Healthy – emphasize fruits meet travelers like yourself. VFW: 1919 Wendell Lane, Pleasant Hill at 10am. and vegetables, take vitamins Upcoming Trips: • Building Up the Brain – set aside Tropical Costa Rica Feb. 3–Feb. 12, 2012 & Italy’s Treasures Mar. 24-Apr.4, 2010. time for memorization exercises, puzzles, and reading • Getting Plenty of Z’s - getting restful 818 Green St. (925) 370-8770 sleep helps to process, store, and recall information Council on Aging – Position Open

The World Health Organization has declared October 10th World Mental Health Day to educate people around the globe about serious mental health conditions affecting millions of people each day, including thousands of local seniors. In recognition of this worldwide awareness effort, Senior Helpers, a leading local in-home senior care provider, is asking our families with aging loved ones to watch for the most telling signs of a potentially devastating problem. Alzheimer’s disease and other

• Reducing Stress – studies show lifelong stress can double or quadruple chances of Alzheimer’s • Kicking Unhealthy Habits – smoking and heavy drinking are two well-known risk factors that lead to mental health diseases. For more information please visit the National Alzheimer’s Association at

Pleasant Hill Senior Activities

Martinez Senior Activities

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The City of Martinez and the Board of Directors for the Senior Club are looking for a volunteer willing to serve on the board for the Contra Costa County Advisory Council on Aging. The Council meets every month except November. Attendees participate in at least one of the Council’s Work Groups: Legislative Advocacy Work Group – Studies and reviews bills, etc. / Housing Work Group – Looks into adequate and affordable housing for seniors/Transportation Work Group – concerned with transportation needs of seniors in Contra Costa County or Health Work Group – Assesses health-related programs and systems affecting seniors. The Martinez representative issues a report on the Council’s monthly activities in person or can be submitted. The Council offers travel reimbursement. AARP Tax-Aide Call for Volunteers for 2012 Tax Season Do you like working with people? Are you good with numbers? Contra Costa County AARP Tax-Aide is looking for volunteers to become members of a team providing free tax preparation for individuals of all ages. Volunteers are trained by Tax-Aide and become IRS Certified tax counselors. If interested, call LaVerne Gordon, District Coordinator, at (925) 726-3199. Orientation is in November and classes for tax counselors start in January.

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October 2011

Uncle! There are some in my family who claim I snore. Now, personally I have never known this to be true. I have no indications that I make a single noise when I sleep. In my world I sleep peacefully. Angelically. I have no trouble sleeping at all. In fact, I have been known to sleep so long that the only reason I get up is because my back hurts from sleeping so long.

By Russell Carroll Over the years, my wife has learned of the bed crying like Mark McGwire. to sleep with earplugs. This seems to “What’s the matter?” I asked. “I forgot me like a small adjustment. After all, my ear plugs,” she said. “I will never be I have endured a couple of surgeries able to sleep.” Her reaction seemed a to aid the alleged snoring issue. When little drastic to me. Whatever happened traveling as a family we always get two to “for better or for worse”? We decided hotel rooms to comfortably accommoto go for Plan A, which would allow her date the five of us. Check-in is typically to fall asleep first. But, as with any plan, followed by a nasty little debate around there were obstacles. The solution was who has to share a room with “snore for me to lie in bed and read while she guy.” The good news is I often end up got a head start toward slumber land. with my own room! Unfortunately, she can’t sleep with the One night while traveling with just light on. So, I turned off the light and my wife, I found her sitting on the edge tried to lie as still as possible, making

A Special Benefit to Help Support Frank Loureiro’s Family Some of you have known him as “Coach Frank”, “Super Dents Frank”, “Martial Arts Specialist Frank” or just “Family Man Extraordinaire”… to us, he’s been our much loved son, brother, uncle and father. Frank has been gravely ill and unable to work and provide for his wife and children, which on top of his health, has been financially devastating to the family. To help them during this most difficult time, we are holding an evening fundraiser to lend our support. Please save the date. Invite your friends and family and join us for an afternoon of pasta, games, raffle and live music by “The Soul Mates”. All proceeds will go directly to Frank’s family. Our most sincere thanks are offered in advance.

Sunday, October 9th: 1:00 – 5:00 PM Dallimonti’s Restaurant

925-944-5224 • 1932 Oak Park Blvd. Pleasant Hill Contribution: $30 pp for dinner and music No host bar Please send all RSVP’s and inquiries to: For those interested in donating: CitiBank 700 Contra Costa Blvd, Pleasant Hill CA 94523 - Under acct #40027698914 Payable to: Starla Loureiro PayPal Account: OR directly to their home:1804 Glacier Ct., Martinez, CA 94553

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AS RUSS SEES IT no noise at all, and what happened? I FELL ASLEEP! The next morning I found her complaining of back pain because she tried to sleep in the bathtub with the door closed. Again, a bit drastic. I guess there may be some truth to her claims. I once had a call from a hotel front desk stating that the person in the adjoining room could not sleep due to my snoring. Perhaps, they were part of this well-organized conspiracy to break my spirit; beat me down until I become more amenable (because some find me hard to get along with - but I will save that for another article). Eventually I cried “Uncle” and headed off for a sleep study. The point of the sleep study was to record my breathing and possible snoring activity during a typical night’s sleep. So, they threw me in a strange room, in a strange bed, connected to multiple wires and sensors, flicked off the florescent lights and said “nighty-night”! Yep, just like home. I lay there as if in a straight jacket, afraid to move for fear of strangling myself with these wires during my “typical” night’s sleep. A few days later we received the results. The family all gathered around to hear the news. It was like a reading of the will: I had stopped breathing 27 times and snored 464 times during my typical night’s sleep. The family leapt to their feet and shared high fives. My wife and oldest son performed a perfect chestbump. It was confirmed. I am a snoring machine. Now I sleep with a mask connected to a machine that pumps oxygen into my system. This thing blows enough air to dry your hair. My family thinks the mask makes me look like I am on lifesupport. I think it makes me look like a fighter pilot. There is a happy ending though. My wife says the snoring is gone! Sleeping like a baby, “angelic” I think is what she said. The craziest part of this story is that somewhere there is someone whose job it is to count snores. But….that is just how I see it.

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October 2011


High Fashion at a Discount The Plato’s Closet Pleasant Hill / Concord location buys and sells very gently used brand name fashions for teens and twenty-somethings.  The Pleasant Hill / Concord location is owned and operated by Matthew and Cindy Converse, who live locally with their two sons Chase and Ayden.  The Converse family fell in love with the Plato’s Closet concept when some friends of the family opened a store near Olympia, Washington.  The idea of being able to give cash or store credit to local youngsters for their gently used brand-name fashions and resell them at 50-90% off the original retail price to the local community was very appealing to the owners for a multitude of reasons.  Teens and young adults often don’t have a lot of money to spend on expensive name brand fashions. Plato’s Closet allows them to make some money selling their current gently used name brand items they no

longer fit in to, or need. They then offer these items at 50-90% off of what they would cost at the mall.  In this tough economy Plato’s Closet is a great way for parents to get their teenagers or college age kids the clothes they really want at a great price. You can often get an entirely new outfit from head to toe for less then one or two items at the mall. “We feel this is a nice service for the local community and it is great for the environment that we are able to recycle these barely used clothing items” says owner Matthew Converse. Plato’s Closet is open seven days a week from 10am-8pm, Mon.-Sat. and 11am-6pm on Sun. and located at 959 Contra Costa Blvd. in Pleasant Hill.  They buy items seven days a week up until an hour before closing for the day.  Contact information: (925) 691-6700, and Plato’s Closet Pleasant Hill is on Facebook. 

Auto, Truck, Motorcycle, Boat, RV and Commercial

DON’T WAIT IN LINE! We are an authorized California Vehicle Registration location.


We are the local Progressive, Safeco, Mercury and Travelers Insurance agent.


70 Doray Drive, Suite #6, Pleasant Hill (Across from Play it Again Sports) Pleasant Hill


Pleasant Hill Middle School (field by the tennis courts) 9/10 year-olds – 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM • 13/14 year-olds – 12:00 – 2:00 PM 11/12 year-olds – 2:00 – 4:00 (Ages are as of April 30, 2012) You must pre-register your player prior to tryouts with Melissa Brackins at Please send your player’s name and the age group he will be trying out for. Please register no later than October 19, 2011.



All participants, including returning players, are encouraged to attend both dates. However, it is only required that you attend one. The 12 year-old team has a berth to the Cooperstown Dreams Park tournament in New York for mid-summer 2012. Playing on this team requires a commitment to this tournament. A parent must accompany player to the tryouts to sign a waiver and attend a brief meeting. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early. If you have any questions regarding Hawks Baseball, the level of play, requirements, expenses, Cooperstown, etc, please email Russell Carroll, Hawks Baseball Commissioner, at


October 2011

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Diablo Futbol Club

Proudly sponsored by:


Diablo Futbol Club’s (DFC) teams finished with a dominant showing in all age divisions, with most clubs taking first, second, third or fourth in the recently contested Wine Country Tournament held in Napa. The premier team Galaxy took first-place with a 1-0 win in the championship game over the runner-up, the Gold Team Azzuri. Pictured are both teams after the championship match.

I never had a policy; I have just tried to do my very best each and every day. Abraham Lincoln

Photo by: Diane Rivest Top Row (Standing): Galaxy’s Coach Richard Weiszmann, Caroline Chouinard, Janet Lopez, Lauren Robinow, Sam Gotz, Carly Agostino, Sophia Jones, Rajneet Sahota, Daniela Suarez, Nicole Lanfranchi, Francesca Monti, Rebecca Phelan, Rozalyn Marzocco, Maaeva Dwiggins, Emma Hough, Mackenzie Lyall, Cassie Silva, Jenna Betti, Payton Mannie and Azzurri’s Coach Jack Boeger. Middle Row (Kneeling): Susanna Garcia, Ashley McClearnen, Sophie Wheeler, Santana Merryfield, Stephanie Neys, Isabel Hough, Katie Christman, Alli Moody, Marianna Giovannetti, Katie Rangel, Kylie Schneider and Gabrielle Hair. Front Row (Bottom Sitting): Amanda Zodikoff and Lindsey Osmer.

Laura Lawrence is a familiar face in both Martinez and Pleasant Hill dedicating her business, personal and organizational skills as well as shear hard work to the betterment of both communities. Leaders in Martinez and Pleasant Hill who have worked with Laura offered these comments: “Laura was the Chair of the Pleasant Hill Chamber Ambassadors for several years. Under her direction the ambassadors continued, and in fact excelled, in their outstanding roll as the contact points of our chamber community. Laura is always participating in some way with and for our community.” Dick Hixson, Hixson Photography “Laura is a dynamo of a woman. While running her thriving insurance business she has taken the time to become outstanding member of our community. She is a faultless volunteer who can be counted on to perform at the very highest level of professionalism. She is a significant cog in the wheel of the Chamber of Commerce’s King of the County BBQ Challenge and Music Festival, whereby she runs the Amateur Barbeque arm of the festival with great organization and success. This event showcases our city, and Laura’s efficiency and skills raise the bar at every level. She is a tireless worker, making sure that every detail is in order. Laura is also ever present at Chamber events, mixers and ribbon cuttings. She is deeply involved in the community and works tirelessly to give back.” Cynthia Murdough, CEO, Martinez Chamber of Commerce

The Cosmos Conquest Submitted by Sandy Jones

The weekend of August 19-21 will live on in memory as a heart wrenching series of games leading to triumph for the Heritage Soccer Club’s Cosmos U12 boys and their families. They began the Mustang Stampede tournament competing for goals against FC Elk Grove.  Both teams played well and stayed 2-2 until the last 5 minutes when Cosmos scored the winning goal. The following day they met their match and tied the Mustang Arsenal.  Cosmos enjoyed a confidence-building win versus Central Marin 5-0.  Next they met Athletico from Santa Rosa in the semifinals. The game was intense. It went into overtime and continued to be scoreless until the Cosmos’ triumphed with penalty kicks (PK’s). Both teams were applauded for their efforts.  The Championship game proved to be just as competitive.  The game was tied despite numerous corner kicks and great defensive moves.  Fearing another PK shoot-out, the Cosmos and its fans went wild after making a goal in the last minute winning the Mustang Stampede Tournament Championship.

“Laura is a treasure in the community. She selflessly continues to donate her time to several events/organizations and she strives for perfection in everything. When asked to help with the King of the County BBQ in Martinez, not only did she learn how to judge an event, but she took it upon herself get involved in the BBQ world and she became a KCBS certified judge, which is the most recognized national BBQ circuit. People like Laura inspire me to give more to my community and take it to a higher level. She can take a tough situation and have all parties smiling in the end. She just has that way about her.” Dwayne Glemser, Store Manager, Les Schwab Tire Center, Martinez

Martinez 3800 Alhambra 370-6382 • Concord 625 Contra Costa Blvd. 825-5940

Limit one coupon per customer. Not valid with other offers.Restrictions apply. Valid and redeemable only when presented at a participating location. The UPS Store centers are independently owned and operated. © 2010 Mail Boxes Etc., Inc. Exp. 10/31/2011

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October 2011





Sat 10/1 Farmer Invitational Wed 10/5 DFAL Center Meet #1 Sat 10/8 Castro Valley Tojan Inv. Sat 10/15 TBD 10/20-10/23 Mt. SAC Wed 10/26 DFAL Center Meet #2 Sat 11/05 DFAL Championships Sat 11/19 NCS Championships Sat 11/26 CIF Championships

Hayward HS Hidden Lakes Park on Center Canyon, Castro Valley TBD Mt San Antonio College Shadow Falls Park Pleasanton Hidden Lakes Park (Center) Hayward HS Woodard Park


7:30 2:30 8:00 TBD 12:00 2:00 12:00 TBA TBA


DATE Wed 10/05 Fri 10/07 Wed 10/12 Sat 10/15 Tue 10/18 Wed 10/19 Thur 10/20 Wed 10/26 Fri 10/28 Sat 10/29

OPPONENT Campolindo San Luis Obispo Miramonte Alhambra JV Tournament Amador Valley Dougherty Valley Northgate Las Lomas JV Championships Cal High

Varsity at 4pm & JV at 6pm

GIRLS TENNIS DATE Thur 10/06 Tue 10/11 Thur 10/13 Tue 10/18 Thur 10/20 Tue 10/25 Thur 10/27


OPPONENT Campolindo Las Lomas Miramonte Acalanes Dublin Dougherty Valley Team Doubles

SITE Campolindo Las Lomas Alhambra Alhambra Dublin Alhambra Alhambra

SITE Campolindo San Luis Obispo Alhambra Alhambra Amador Valley Dougherty Valley Alhambra Alhambra Las Lomas Cal High


DATE OPPONENT Wed 10/05 Campolindo Sat 10/08 Alhambra Classic Tourney Wed 10/12 Miramonte 10/14-10/15 Pinole Girls Varsity Tourny Tue1 10/18 Amador Valley Wed 10/19 Dougherty Valley Wed 10/26 Las Lomas Wed 11/12 NCS First Round Sat 11/15 NCS Second Round Varsity at 4pm & JV at 5pm

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL DATE Tue 10/04 Thur 10/06 Thur 10/13 Tue 10/18 Thur 10/20 Tue 10/25 Thur 10/27 Tue 11/01

DFAL Tennis Tournament: November 3, 4 and 5, 2011 All games at 3:30pm. Oct 27th game at 2:40pm.

OPPONENT Dublin Dougherty Valley Campolindo Las Lomas Miramonte Acalanes Dublin Dougherty Valley

SITE Campolindo Alhambra Alhambra CCC Amador Valley Dougherty Valley Alhambra TBA TBA

SITE Alhambra Dougherty Valley Campolindo Las Lomas Alhambra Alhambra Dublin Alhambra

Tournaments: TBA NCS Championships: November 9, 12, 16, 19 - 2011 Frosh at 4pm, JV at 5pm & V at 6:30pm

GIRLS GOLF DATE Tue 10/04 Wed 10/05 Thur 10/06 Tue 10/11 Thur 10/13 Tue 10/17

OPPONENT Campolindo Las Lomas DVHS Las Lomas Miramonte League TBA

All matches begin at 3:30

SITE Moraga CC Boundry Oaks DVHS Boundry Oaks Orinda CC TBA



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October 2011

Page 17




NO. 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12 13 15 21 23 24 26 28 32 34

s g o D o G NAME

Gonzalez, Jose Revetta, Nick Bailey, Michael Johnson, Cody Little ,Ethan Christolos, Nick Costa, Leo Green, Justin DelDosso, Devon Richard, Eric Martinez, Vincent Miller, John Lopez, Jose Salva, Kyle Archuleta, Julian Wilson, Mitchell Poyadue, Taylor Sperry, Cameron Crosno, Andrew


11 11 12 12 11 12 10 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 11 12 11 12 12




36 Lamberts, Kory 43 Avalos, Edwin 50 Mosher, Guile 52 Todd, Kendrick 54 Pierce, Joe 56 Outman, Lenny 58 Gallerin, Brandon 63 DiMercurio, Marco 66 Highleyman, John 72 Lara, Miguel 74 Navarro, Julian 75 vonDisterlo, Alex 76 Rossi, Stevie 77 Parhar, Camran 78 Fernando, Vincent 80 DuQuette, Kameron 85 Johal, Jayveer 87 Haney, Bergen 99 Candia, Ken


12 12 12 11 11 12 12 12 12 11 11 12 12 11 12 12 12 12 12

VARSITY FOOTBALL DATE Fri 10/07 Fri 10/14 Fri 10/28 Fri 11/04 Thur 11/10

OPPONENT Dublin Acalanes Campolindo Dougherty Valley Miramonte

SITE Dublin Acalanes Alhambra Dougherty Valley Alhambra

TIME 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:00

SITE Dublin Acalanes Alhambra Dougherty Valley Alhambra

TIME 4:30 4:30 4:30 4:30 7:00

JV FOOTBALL DATE Fri 10/07 Fri 10/14 Fri 10/28 Fri 11/04 Thur 11/10

OPPONENT Dublin Acalanes Campolindo Dougherty Valley Miramonte

FRESHMAN FOOTBALL DATE Thur 10/06 Thur 10/13 Thur 10/27 Thur 11/03 Wed 11/09

OPPONENT Dublin Acalanes Campolindo Dougherty Valley Miramonte

SITE Alhambra Alhambra Campolindo Alhambra Miramonte

TIME 5:00 5:00 5:00 5:00 5:00


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To be a proud sponsor of the upcoming Alhambra High School Sports Calendar Pullout


Page 18

HOME TEAM Neu Moving Up The California Golden Bears baseball team has announced that they have brought Mike Neu on board as their new pitching coach. Neu is now a key part of head coach David Esquer’s staff. Neu replaces long-time pitching coach Dan Hubbs who decided to depart. The Bears were one of the big stories in college baseball this past season, being one of eight schools to make it to the College World Series. Neu joins a team that will be ranked high in national polls heading into the 2012 season. Neu comes from Diablo Valley College where he was head coach for the past two seasons. In 2010, Neu led the Vikings to the Big 8 Conference, Region I and Super Regional titles. In 2011, he was named the Conference Coach of the Year as DVC won the championship once again. A local boy raised in Napa, the 33-year-old Neu spent two seasons in the Major Leagues, including one for the Oakland Athletics, before joining the coaching ranks. In 2003, Neu was a relief pitcher for the A’s. He pitched 42 innings, appeared in thirty-two games and posted a 3.64 ERA. Steve Ward has volunteered to take the helm for DVC in Neu’s place for 2012. Ward previously coached the Vikings for over 20-seasons and enjoyed much success. In 2002 he was inducted into the California Community College Baseball Hall of Fame, Ward last coached in 2000. He was also the Athletic Director at DVC for over two decades. Randy Wilson Martinez’s own Randy Wilson competed in the World Masters Athletics

October 2011

Season Ticket By Chuck Nan late-August. (WMA) Championships in Sacramento a at the Feats of Strength Meet in Castro few months back. The Olympic style event is Valley, Tami Lacy of Martinez set two world Fighting at 161-pounds, Reger defeated his opponent, NorCal MMA an arena for the top over-50 track and field records for women in the 50-54 age group. fighter Kyle Davey of Roseville, in a TKO athletes from all over the world. The compeLacy completed 14 strict chin-ups to notch 48 seconds into the second round. Reger tition boasts many former Olympians. her first record. She then successfully comshowed no signs of nerves and braved pleted one chin-up for maximum weight Wilson competed in six different with 37.4 pounds extra (in addition to body the hot, humid conditions of the outdoor throwing/field events for the 50-54 age event in Placer County. weight) for a total of 158.4 pounds. This group. His best finishes were in the weight Still growing in popularity, the event meet was held as part of the 2011 Bay Area pentathlon and discus throw. He scored saw a sellout crowd estimated at 3,000 fans Senior Games. second (silver) in the pentathlon and third to catch the 18 bouts featured on the card. (bronze) in the discus. The pentathlon Reger Prevails Only one of the fights on the card went to consists of the shot put, hammer throw, dis Concord resident and Martinez the judges for decision. cus, javelin and weight throw. Wilson also trained Rick “Boomer” Reger made his competed in the shot put, weight throw, professional Mixed Martial Artist (MMA) Reger will continue training with his team, Team Fightkore, under the watch of hammer throw and javelin throw. debut in successful fashion at the GladiSean Sharkey at the Martinez Fight Club, in Weight Pentathlon: 2nd (Silver) (3,663 ator Challenge’s “Unleashed” event, held preparation for his next bout. Points). Men’s 50 Discus: 3rd (Bronze) at the Thunder Valley Casino Resort in (45.75 m) Men’s 50 Shot: 5th (14.06 m) Men’s 50 Weight: 10th (15.04 m) Men’s 50 Hammer: 11th (41.42 m) Men’s 50 Javelin: 25th (44.28 m) The WMA World Championships were held at four different venues in and around Sacramento. This included facilities at Sacramento State University, Sacramento City College and American River College. Wilson is co-founder of the Nor Cal Throwers and devotes his time as throwing coach for the Alhambra High School track team. Wilson practices two-to-three days per week but has indicated that he is taking the rest of the year off. He is also looking for any interested parties to join the Nor Cal Throwers. Any age is welcome. For more information, please go to Daivon Ballard rushed 24 times for 102 yards (4.2 avg.) and one touchdown as College Park won the annual “Backyard Brawl” battle with Alhambra, 28-20. Sophomore quarterback Dimitri Salido also looked Tami Lacy good as he tossed two touchdown passes and ran for another. Jaelen Collins caught both of Salido’s TD Another local athlete demonstrated passes, a pair of 22-yarders to preserve the victory. Alhambra was led by tailback Mitchell Wilson who rushed 11 times for 103 yards (9.4 avg.) and one touchdown (16 yards). He also caught one pass. success on a grand stage. Earlier this year,

CP’s Dimitri Salido with the Carry

Photo by Tod Gomes,



October 2011

A Temporary Goodbye A summer cultural visit to the United States turned out well for the Ukrainian orphans who were brought here in the hopes of finding adoptive families. Eager families were found for four of the children who visited. Seven-year old Bogdan, who was hosted in Pleasant Hill by Cara and Brian Helberg, is in the process of being adopted by a North Carolina family who flew to California to meet him over the summer.

Cara Helberg is the founder and Executive Director of the Licensed Adoption Agency, Angels Haven, which works to bring adoptive children to the U.S. to meet potential families. Cara is currently planning to bring a group of ten children from Ukraine in December. If your family is interested in hosting a child for a visit, Cara can be contacted at www., 1-877-378-9781 or

Page 19

CPHS Student Wins Grant this year to help offset budget cuts to Sophomore Katia Novak captured schools. Katia’s painting of a mermaid a grand prize of $1500 for the College Park High School Art Department with entitled “Hooked on Zachary’s” will be displayed in their College Avenue locaher painting submitted in the semi-annual art contest sponsored by Zachary’s tion in Oakland. Pizza. Katia’s work was first selected from nearly 400 entries by students and adults to be displayed in the Bay Area restaurants. She was then chosen as one of three grandprize winners of the new Student Artist Award for schools, which includes a gift certificate and prizes for the student. According to Kevin Suto, Zachary’s CEO, the company wanted to do Photo LtoR: CPHS Art Department staff Chris Ellenwood, Marianne Mcsomething different Craney, student Katia Novak, and CPHS Vice Principle Peter Aloo.

Page 20

October 2011

Halloween Haunts and Happenings
 10/1-31 - Pick of the Patch Pumpkins. ABC Tree Farms in Martinez presents Pick of the Patch Pumpkins, a pumpkin patch with several varieties of pumpkins and a wide variety of inflatable amusements including large slides, bounce houses, and obstacle courses. Plus retail Halloween items, cold beverages and snacks, a Halloween photograph area, and more. Pacheco Blvd. and Blum Rd., Martinez. Sun.-Thur. 9:30am-9pm; Fri.-Sat. 9 am-9:30pm, free. For more info. visit: 10/1-31 - Clayton Valley Pumpkin Farm. Come to Clayton’s pumpkin wonderland and choose a pumpkin and specialty items including squash and gourds. Also enjoy Plumpkin Playland, duck races, a train, animals, baked treats, Rollin A. Plumpkin visits, gift shop, and more! 1060 Pine Ln., Clayton. 9am-8pm. Admission is free; fees for activities. For more info. visit: 10/8-9 - Harvest Festival at Ardenwood Historic Farm. Become a share-cropper for a day and help harvest this year’s Indian Corn and popcorn crops! Enjoy fresh squeezed apple cider, hands-on crafts making, games, hoedown music, pumpkin patch, and the bounty of another harvest season. $8; kids $5; seniors $6. 10 am-5 pm. 34600 Ardenwood Blvd, Fremont, (888) 327-2757. 10/8-31 - Mangini Farms Pumpkins. This patch features pumpkins, small hay maze, and gourds. Mangini Farms, 24 Mangini Dr. in Pleasant Hill. Mon.-Fri. 10 am-6 pm; Sat.-Sun. 9 am-5 pm. Admission $3 for hayride, corn maze, patch, and small pumpkin; Smaller patch free. 10/15 – Full Moon Cemetery Tour. 6:30 - 7:40pm. There is nothing that reveals more about Martinez or its history more vividly than at walk through the Alhambra Cemetery. You will learn more about local war heroes personalities, politicians and a most creative caretaker. This tour is to enlighten, not frighten! Bring your flashlight and dress for the weather. Free, but donations to the Martinez Historical Society are appreciated. Call 372-3510 to reserve your spot space is limited. No children, please. 10/15 - Ardenwood Scarecrow Scavenger Hunt. Ardenwood’s scarecrows aren’t just decoration, they do important work. Ardenwood’s has been scattered around the farm. Help find the missing parts and put them back together. Meet in the barn! Ardenwood Historic Farm, 34600 Ardenwood Blvd., Fremont. Noon-1 pm. $2-$5. 10/15 - Benicia Sorcerer Saturday. Join in this family-friendly celebration of Sorcerers, Witches, and Warlocks! The day will welcome the magic and mystery of October with vendors, activities, and special brews for adults! The event takes place at the Haunted Depot (open noon-3 pm). Historic Southern Pacific Depot, 90 First St., Benicia. For more info visit: 10/21, 22, 28 & 29 – Concord Cascade Haunted House - This haunted house offers scares, fun, wonderful actors and you will laugh and scream at the same time! Full of surprises! Concord Cascade Mobile Home Park, 245 Aria Dr., Pacheco. 7 pmmidnight. $5. 10/22 – Carnoween. A fun, Pleasant Hill tradition for over 40 years, Carnoween, Pleasant Hill Elementary School’s annual Halloween carnival, features games, food, prizes, and more! 10:30am-3 pm. Free; game tickets three for $1. 10/27 – Marty ‘O’s Halloween Haunt. 3:30pm-5pm. Nancy Boyd Park, 90 Church Street, Martinez. We are having an old fashioned Halloween affair. There will be crafts, candy, and face painting to share. To register call the Recreation office at 3723510. Everything is FREE. Decorate a candy bag and have your face painted. The candy hunt will be at 4:00pm. Ages 3-12 years old. Space is limited to the first 100 children.

10/28-29 - Roaring Camp Railroads, Children’s Ghost Train. Relive “The Legend of Sleepy Hallow” this Halloween riding vintage railway cars through a Redwood forest. Costumed actors re-enact scenes from the story as it’s narrated during the one-hour and fifteen minute ride. Reservations required. Trains depart at 6:30 and 8:00 p.m. 5355 Graham Hill Rd., Felton, CA 95018. (831) 335-4484. 10/28-10/30 - Haunted House, Lafayette Community Center (Live Oak Room), 500 St. Mary’s Road, Lafayette. 5–7pm is not too scary; parents accompany children 7 and under; 7:30–9:30 p.m. is very scary; for children 8 and over. Join us for a ghoulishly good time! Tickets: $3 (ages 7 and under); $5 (ages 8 and over). (925) 284-2232. 10/28, 29, 30 & 31 - Cursi House of Screams. Dr. Satan is back, chilling bones to the core. The Cursi House of Screams is a home haunt that welcomes all ages, but is not recommended for small children. Strobe lights, smoke, and sudden spooks are not the only things of which to be afraid. 5625 Lewis Way, Concord. Free, but donations appreciated. 10/28 - 4th Annual Downtown Walnut Creek Trick-or-Treat. 2pm-6pm. Collect as much candy as you can at participating downtown stores. Come dressed in your costume!! To receive a bag and map of participating businesses, you must begin at the starting location between 2pm-5:30pm.  Children 10 & under must be accompanied by an adult.  For the official starting location, visit: Special note: This Trick-or-Treat event takes place in the traditional downtown area.  Broadway Plaza hosts their own Trick-or-Treating event on 10/31. 10/29 – Halloween Party at Armando’s - Halloween party with Macy Blackman and the Mighty Fines at Armando’s! 707 Marina Vista Ave., Martinez. 7:30pm11pm. $10. 10/29 - USS Hornet Monster Bash - Is the USS Hornet Haunted? Bring the whole family and find out. At this annual fundraiser onboard the “Grey Ghost,” visitors will get a good fright throughout the evening with haunted tours, costume contests, and other treats. Dance favorites by The Cocktail Monkeys. USS Hornet, Pier 3, 707 W. Hornet Ave., Alameda. 7:30 pm-midnight. $25; $20 in advance; $10 kids ages 5-17years. 10/30 - Trunk or Treat’s THE big event for Halloween in Downtown Martinez. 10am to 2pm (in conjunction with the Farmer’s Market). Dozens of local businesses are participating (with decorated car trunks and inside their business). Last year we had more than 500 children attend this FREE event. 10/30 – Concord Halloween Parade and Costume Contest. 12noon-2pm. Todos Santos Plaza. Parade around the Plaza with treats for the kids; entertainment, and the Mayor’s Mongrel Mash. Costume judging after the parade. See the Todos Santos Scarecrow contest winner. For more information, call the events hotline: 671-3464 or visit: 10/31 - Trick-Or-Treat at Broadway Plaza. 5:30pm-7pm. Join us for some safe and spooky fun this Halloween! Fill your favorite treat bag with goodies from all participating stores while supplies last. 10/31 – Halloween Tour. 6:30 - 7:40 p.m. Join us as we explore the Alhambra cemetery in Martinez on All Hallows Eve. Don’t forget your flashlight and sturdy walking shoes. This tour is to enlighten, not frighten. Call 372-3510 to reserve your spot space is limited. No children please.

October 2011

The Blue Devils Want You

The award winning Blue Devils Drum & Bugle Corps & Color Guard will be offering color guard classes for boys and girls ages 5-8 years old. We will teach basic dance moves and traveling combinations. There will be work to develop rhythm and basic flag spinning. Ten-week classes are held on Thursdays from 5:30 PM to 6:15 PM. Classes will begin on Thursday, October 6th at New Life Christian Fellowship, 3525 Chestnut Ave in Concord. Class Fee is $40.00.

2011 CP Hall of Fame

On August 26, supporters of College Park High School athletics gathered for the annual 2011 Athletic Hall of Fame dinner. Director Jerry Pollard says this is the fifth annual event and inductees included: Sally Sutton (1963, track & field), Karen Semenza (1988, softball, track & field and basketball), Casey Strand (1994, wrestling), coach Ed Sias (cross-country and track & field) and the 1993 football team (undefeated champions of MBAL). Each member is honored with an individual plaque and a blanket banner which hangs proudly from the school gymnasium. In all, some 30 athletes and five teams have been honored by the foundation thus far.

Additional Blue Devil Groups The Blue Devils “C� Drum & Bugle is also looking for new members. The “C� Corps is a beginning-level music, dance and marching activity for ages 8 to 14. Rehearsals will begin in mid-October. For additional information contact Rick Odello at 925 689-2918 X3100. The Blue Devils “A� Winter Guard will begin rehearsals on Tuesday, October 4th at Calvary Baptist Church of Concord -2140 Olivera Ct. in Concord. The ages are 8-14. No experience necessary. For more information, please call Annette Odello 925 383-0424. The Blue Devils “Open� Winter Guard – Winter Guard is a competitive program that combines music, dance, and props into a theatrical production performed in a gymnasium. The ages are 14-23. Auditions are Sunday, October 9th 12:00-5:00 PM at the California Nat’l Guard Armory 2525 Willow Pass Road in Concord and Sunday, October 16th 12:00 to 5:00 PM at the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Diablo Valley, 1301 Alhambra Valley Ave. in Martinez.



.A M

Pictured (L to R) Karen Semenza, Sally Sutton, Ed Sias, Casey Strand.



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October 2011

Lose the Lawn and Get a Garden Did you know that lawn irrigation accounts for more than 25% of the water use in Contra Costa County? For many homeowners, lawns consume more than 50% of their household water use.  In addition, lawn maintenance typically requires regular chemical fertilizers, herbicides and weekly mowing. In contrast, yards landscaped with waterefficient plants will use less than half the water of lawns and require little maintenance.  For example, converting a 30’ X 30’ lawn can save more than 25,000 gallons per year! Saving water means saving on your water bill, which is always a good thing. Eliminating the need for weekly mowing means saving time if you’re doing the mowing yourself and saving money if you use a gardener. So, your money and your Saturday mornings can be spent, say, on the golf course instead.

By Chris Dundon, Water Conservation Supervisor, CCWD

Aside from significantly reducing your water consumption, consider the benefits to the environment when you switch from a traditional lawn to water-efficient plants. Not running a lawn mower helps reduce greenhouse gases, and if you can eliminate the need to apply chemical fertilizers and herbicides, which

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seep into the environment, the wildlife, the water supply and the planet will thank you. For a limited time, Contra Costa Water District is offering rebates to encourage its customers to replace water-thirsty front lawns and other publicly visible lawns with water-efficient landscaping. Single-family residential customers can receive a rebate of fifty cents ($0.50) per square foot of lawn replaced, up to $500, and commercial and municipal customers can receive a rebate up to $5,000. The program is open to residential, commercial, and municipal customers in the District’s service area, which consists of Clayton, Clyde, Concord, Pacheco, Port Costa, Martinez, Antioch, Bay Point, Pittsburg, Oakley and parts of Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek and Brentwood. The program is not retroactive, and

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Page 23


Fall Brings a Delicious Variety to the Table October is an exciting time of year for food freaks. We get this phenomenal crossover season that blends cool weather crops with remnants of sexy summer goods, eagerly jumping over the line. You can actually make a butternut squash and caramelized onion risotto for an entrée while lovingly slurping up the last crop of your heirloom tomatoes with mozzarella and basil from the garden. What about crunchy white nectarines and grapes tossed into a fruit salad with juicy local apples and Fuyu persimmons? Artichokes can be found cockily displayed next to brilliantly red-veined Swiss chard. Have you ever grilled an artichoke before? They are amazing. I had one at a farmers’ market I was cooking at and was flummoxed by the ease in preparation as well as how good it tasted. Cut the lower part of the stem off a large artichoke. Cut the prickly tops off. Rub in olive oil and salt. Place on medium hot grill for about a half an hour. Turn intermittently. That’s it. You can also make a nice aioli by scooping some mayo into a bowl and stirring in a bunch of fresh,

By Lesley Stiles chopped garlic and lemon juice. Dip and Lesley Stiles is a graduate of the it never gets cold in these parts until swoon. California Culinary Academy, sustainHalloween, so until then, be sure to en All manner of salad greens are perkjoy your crossover season produce along able caterer and school garden educator. ing up with cooler evenings and mornContact Lesley at lesleystiles@comcast. with lusciously velvet evenings, unsurings, and we still have tomatoes and cunet, and passed hiking and biking trails, and Mt. cumbers to toss them with before we flow Diablo, and hope for a very long Indian visit her new website: www.lesleystilesinto the apple, blue cheese and walnut summer followed by lots of rain. salad season. Pears are crazy, sugary, buttery good at the markets as well. At the This is a great cookie for breakfast and lunch boxes as well as snacks or dessert. Half of Alhambra Valley Farm stall at the Pleasthe butter is replaced with apple sauce and yogurt, and I use whole wheat flour along ant Hill and Martinez farmers’ markets with the oats. Add turbinado sugar, apples and fresh current crop nuts and raisins. This is no ordinary cookie. Barely even any empty calories! Makes about 40 cookies. they have three bins marked: “To eat today,” “ In a few days,” and “In a few more.” Ingredients: Perfect--buy a lot, they go down quick. 4 tablespoons butter, softened ¾ teaspoon baking powder If you have not already, it is time to 2 tablespoons apple sauce 1 teaspoon kosher salt 2 tablespoons plain yogurt 2 tablespoons of freshly toasted and get that winter garden in. Get starts of 1 cup turbinado sugar ground cinnamon broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts 2 eggs ¾ cup of chopped fresh apples and plunk into well-drained, richly com2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1 cup current local raisins posted soil. Also plant chards, kales and 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour 1 cup fresh local walnuts, toasted and lettuce from seed. If you are an arugula 1 ½ cups old fashioned uncooked oats chopped lover, now is the time. This amazing, 1 teaspoon baking soda spicy salad or sautéing green acts as a Directions: perennial as it drops its seeds and comes Preheat oven to 350* Spray a couple of cookie sheets with pan release. Cream butback year after year. It’s another great ter, apple sauce, yogurt and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs garden gift that keeps on giving. and vanilla and mix well; stir in oats. Sift the flour, salt, soda, powder and cinna Carve up those Halloween pumpmon onto a sheet of waxed paper, stir into wet ingredients. Add apples, raisins and kins and fill them with soup. Put some nuts, stir well. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minchocolate chips in your pumpkin cookutes. Cookies may look a little under done but will be fine as they cool and not dry ies. Light fires in your barbeque or heatout from over baking. Cool on a rack and store in an airtight container between er and make s’mores. Long-timers know waxed paper.

Fresh Apple and Oatmeal Raisin Cookie

Pleasant Hill Recreation and Park District News

The Bond: Making Progress Although difficult to see through the chain-link fences, the construction sites for the new Pleasant Hill senior center and teen center are showing much activity! Most of the time there are well over a dozen people hard at work. According to Gordon Johnson of Critical Solutions Inc., grading has begun and will continue for several weeks; plumbers are busy with underground plumbing; electricians are working on underground electrical wiring; and some concrete work is being done in preparation for the foundations of the new buildings. For more information on progress, the public is invited to attend the Pleasant Hill Recreation & Park Dis-

trict board of directors meetings on the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month at the administration office at 147 Gregory Lane. The bond projects portion of the meeting begins at 6 pm. Share the Magic on Oct. 21 This year, the annual celebration of magic and mystery will be held at the Winslow Center on the corner of Pleasant Hill Road and Taylor Boulevard. This special show features youngsters who are members of the Society of Young Magicians along with adult members of the Society of American Magicians pulling rabbits out of hats, performing illusions, card tricks, and much more! Members of the audience will get a close-up view of the performers and the clowns, and maybe even take a guess at how the magicians per-

form their tricks. Admission to the show on October 21 is $8 per person and pre-registration is required. Call 682-0896 to sign up soon! Seating is limited. Doors open at 6pm and the show begins at 7pm. Ahoy Matey! Pirates are Coming to Pleasant Hill On Wednesday, October 12 at 3:30 pm, Pleasant Hill Recreation & Park

District is hosting its first-ever Pirate Party at the Winslow Center on the corner of Pleasant Hill Road and Taylor Boulevard. Complete with pirate training, refreshments, and pirate loot. Come dressed in ye pirate best for an afternoon of treasure hunting. Tickets are on sale now for just $8 per person. Call 682-0896 and make your reservations NOW – or beware of the plank!

Teen Center Input Needed! Pleasant Hill Recreation & Park District is proud to be opening the new Pleasant Hill Teen Center in the Fall of 2012. The Teen Center will be located in Pleasant Hill Park on Gregory Lane. The 4,900 square foot building will allow Pleasant Hill Recreation to provide a wide range of programs for Teens. In order to offer the best programs and activities for our Teens, PHR&PD would like to get input from parents about what you and your children would like to see at this facility. If you would like to give input please access the survey at: www.

Page 24

October 2011

In the Mix By Paul Cotruvo fitting). A few days Then there is “Werewolves of Londonâ€? ago, I put my ipod by the late great Warren Zevon. With on shuffle and up great lines like “I saw a werewolf drinking popped a song I a piĂąa colada at Trader Vic’s, his hair was hadn’t heard in a few perfect!â€? and the big “ah-hoooâ€? in the years. It was Elvis chorus, how can you go wrong? Costello’s version Of course, probably one of the greatest of a very disturbing videos of all time is Michael Jackson’s song called “Psycho.â€? It is a chilling song “Thriller.â€? A great song with great dancing written years ago by a country singersongwriter named Leon Payne. The singer and choreography. Need I say more? innocently describes to his mother various One of my all-time favorites is a song by the group Oingo-Boingo, called “Dead murders he has committed, until the song Man’s Party,â€? a great tune from the 80’s, ends with the revelation that he has just killed his own mother! If you can find this which will get you up on the dance floor of murder ballad with such a chilling ending, your Halloween party! I could go on and on with songs like I highly recommend you make it a part of “Ghostbustersâ€? and “I put a spell on youâ€? your music collection. And it’s perfect for (The Screamin Jay Hawkins version). You the upcoming Halloween season! cannot go wrong downloading these tunes I know that Halloween music cannot compare to the vast, inspirational songs of to your ipod, but it also made me think, where are the great Halloween songs of the Christmas season, but there are some great tunes out there. Here are some of my today? Wouldn’t Lady Gaga be perfect for this genre? If you know of any, please favorites, which put me in the mood. e-mail me because I searched and cannot Let’s start with the classic “Monster find anything newer than 1995! Mashâ€? by the great Bobby “Borisâ€? Pickett. I hope you get out there this month Released in 1962, it reached number one and support some live music and maybe on the Billboard charts and is probably you will hear some of these classics! the most well known and most played Quote of the month: Where there is Halloween songs. You can find versions no imagination there is no horror. ranging from Alvin & the Chipmunks to Arthur Conan Doyle, Sr. the Smashing Pumpkins (I know, very PAUL’S PICKS FOR OCTOBER: (ALL THESE EVENTS ARE FREE) October 1: Zoo Station, Dan’s Bar, Walnut Creek, 10:00pm. October 1: Garageland Rodeo, The Station, Martinez, 9:00pm. October 8: Aja Vu, Pleasant Hill Art & Wine Festival (Crescent Drive), 6:00pm. October 9: Cover2Cover, Pleasant Hill Art & Wine Festival (Crescent Drive), 3:00pm. October 13: Jeff Magidson Blues Band, Armandos, Martinez, 8:00pm. October 14: Delta Dogs, Round Up Saloon, Lafayette, 9:00pm. October 22: Jinx Jones Acoustic Duo, Back 40 Texas BBQ, Pleasant Hill, 6:00pm. October 29: Dan DeShara, Rocco’s Pizzaria, Walnut Creek, 8:30pm.

Savanh, originally Bangkok Restaurant, has been serving Thai favorites in this Oak Park location for over 20 years. Insisting on fresh market ingredients, our kitchen locates the freshest produce, seafood, and meats everyday, preparing each dish a little different from other Bay Area Thai restaurants. Our newly redesigned dining room is adorned with the nation’s symbolic emblem, the elephant. Our extensive menu boasts the traditional Thai fare, plus an array of grilled dishes. We also offer take-out. 1910 Oak Park Boulevard • Pleasant Hill Hours: Monday - Saturday, 11am-9pm (closed Sunday) 925.937.4368 •

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Smokey D’s Slow Cooked BBQ Smokey D’s in historic Martinez provides finger-licking, slowcooked, hickory-smoked meats for the courthouse crowd and anyone wanting to be in carnivore heaven. Upon entering, we were greeted by the friendly young women at the counter and the unmistakable, heady scent of BBQ. The open and friendly owner and chef of Smokey D’s, Dave Huitt, opened his restaurant in July and proudly says everything on the menu is made by hand. This proprietor concedes it’s more expensive for him but believes

By Emma Peel popular demand, beef ribs his customers are worth it. were recently added to Combinations of meats the menu. The family and sides range from meal also includes “Belly Fillers” to “Gut a large salad Busters” ($11.99 with homemade – 21.99), but we dressings, rolls, ordered the Family and two large Meal ($45.99). sides from mac & This included cheese, D’s beans, three choices from potato salad, coleslaw, an impressive array pasta salad, seasoned of meats: pulled pork, fries, and onion rings. beef brisket, chicken, turkey The pork ribs were meaty, breast, spicy or mild links, pork ungreasy, and had an especially ribs, and boneless pork loin. Due to pronounced smoky flavor. They are utterly satisfying on their own but two savory sauces are included. The beef brisket was unexpectedly moist and tender and Dave pointed out the pink Mon-Thur 11-8PM “smoke ring” from the edge of the Fri & Sat 11-9PM slices, which indicates smoke flavors Sun 11 - 3PM are deeply absorbed. Meats are slow-



Slow Cooked, Smoked Meats and More


Monday Night Beer & Wing Specials 4pm-Close

Tuesday Night $1 Ribs & Beer Specials 4pm-Close Catering available at our place or yours.

Come watch the baseball playoffs on our HD TV's while enjoying great food, beer & wine! Open Sundays for the first time. Come down, enjoy the Farmers’ Market on Main Street then stop by for the football games.

cooked to perfection for at least six hours. I couldn’t help but imagine the pulled pork featured in one of the lunch sandwiches, offered for $8.49. The sides are all made on the premises, unlike those at many BBQ establishments. I detected hominy in the baked beans, lending a creamy, complex texture. Both the potato salad and coleslaw tasted fresh and natural, not processed or overly salted. Come with your biggest appetite and wash it down with ice cold beer on tap ($3.25 – 4). Monday is football night with 12 chicken wings and a pitcher of Coors Light for $12 and Tuesday is dollar night for ribs and Pabst Blue Ribbon. Smokey D’s is on 601 Main St. in Martinez and is open Monday – Thursday 11 – 8, Friday and Saturday 11 – 9, and Sunday 10 – 3. www.smokeyds. com (925) 335-9930.

Voted Best Japanese Restaurant by Best of the Bay TV Viewers in 2010

$30 Birthday Certificate Join our new Birthday Club and receive a $30 Birthday Certificate to spend at Kobe Japan Restaurant during the month of your birthday. You will also receive special offers and information about the latest happenings in our monthly newsletter. Please go to our website, and

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1918 Oak Park Blvd., Pleasant Hill, California 94523 Phone: (925) 705-7065/7066

Fax: (925)705-7067


Page 26

October 2011

Calendar events

4pm. More information on page 10.

10/1 - New Exhibits Open at Lindsay Wildlife Museum. Fly like a hawk and see like an eagle in “Raptors, Hunters in the Sky, featuring the many adaptations of birds of prey. Explore our wildlife hospital and witness presentations with actual wild animal patients in “Wildlife Hospital, Behind the Scenes.” For open hours and more information, visit www.

10/10 – Pleasant Hill Community Foundation’s 11th Annual Allied Waste Golf Classic. Raise funds to support youth programs in Pleasant Hill and the Senior Center’s Care Management Program.10–11:45am, Registration and Putting contest; 12pm Shotgun start; 5pm No-host cocktails; 6pm Dinner and awards. Visit:

10/4 – Pleasant Hill Garden Study Club. Speaker: Patrick Anderson on “Garden Design with Succulents”. Free. Camellia Room, at Heather Farms, 1540 Marchbanks Dr., WC. Visit www.phgsc. com or call 925-944-4898 for more info.

10/10- 11/23 – Contra Costa County Historical Museum, “The Ladies Have Something To Say”. The centennial of California women getting the right to vote displays and exhibits. Free. Tues., Weds. & Thurs. 9 am – 4pm and third Sat of each month.

10/5 - Emeritus College Presents “Your Personality/Your Heath”, Part 2. Lecturer Dr. Karen Van Zino, MD, Stanford has practiced primary care medicine for 25 years and has studied the ancient wisdom of the Enneagram to learn about personality and how it affects relationships and health. JFK University, Pleasant Hill from 10am –noon. Fee: $25. Call 685-1230 ext 2388 to register. 10/7 – Moonlight Movie - Watch James and Giant Peach on the City Hall Lawn. Bring a blanket, towel, or chair. 100 Gregory Lane, Lawn Area, Pleasant Hill. 10/8 - 2011 Musician’s Showcase. Join us for a night of music and fun to raise funds in support of the College Park Instrumental Music Program. 5pm-10pm at the Hilton Hotel in Concord. Tickets: $60/person. Tickets include dinner and an evening of music from the awardwinning College Park Instrumental Music ensembles. Purchase tickets and get auction information by visiting: 10/8 – Mt. Diablo Writers Club presents Danville author Veronica Rossi on “Creating High Concept Fiction”. Check-in at 11:30am, Noon mtg. and lunch buffet at Zio Fraedo’s Restaurant, 611 Gregory Lane, Pleasant Hill. $20 for CWC members. $25 guests. 10-/8 & 9 – Art, Jazz and Wine Festival – Crescent Dr., Downtown Pleasant Hill. Visit the back page for details! 10-/9 – Martinez Home Tour 10am-

10/12 – Pirate Party. Ahoy Mateys! Join a Pirate Adventure! Go through pirate training and hunt for buried treasure. Includes a snack and goodie bag. $8 per person. 3:30-4:30pm at the Winslow Center, 2590 Pleasant Hill Road, PH. 10/13 - Be Prepared: Top 8 Remedies for Emergencies. Dr. Golovanov & Myra Nissen, CCH discuss remedies that can keep you safe: Ease injuries, calm the shell-shocked, or save a life. 6-7 pm, Quail Court Office Park 43 Quail Court, Suite 215. Conference Room, Floor 2, WC. 925.826.3858, reg. www. 10/14 –11/6- Romeo and Juliet. Fri & Sat 8pm, Sun 2pm. Diablo Valley College, 321 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill. Box Office: 925-687-4445 or www. 10/19 – Veterans in The Mist. Join the American Legion as they host the author of several WWII books, Jerry Whiting. He will captivate you as he tells the stories he’s documented through interviews and research. Gather at 7pm, dinner at 7:30pm; $5. Veterans Memorial Building, 930 Ward Street, Martinez. To RSVP or more information: (925) 518-3295. 10/19 - Emeritus College Presents: Magic, Murder and Mystery. Lecturer Dr. Karen Van Zino will speak about medical history over the centuries, from the miraculous story of Insulin to the grisly details of murder in Florence. JFK University in Pleasant Hill, 10am –noon.

Fee: $25. Call 685-1230 ext 2388 to register

Thursdays. - Preschool Storytime, ages 3-5. 11:15-11:45am.

10/21 – Share the Magic. See illusions, card experts, close-up performers, and clowns. Performances by The Society of American Magicians. Pre-reg. is req. Seating is limited!

10/6 & 20 – Wii Thursdays. Get your game on in Room A, 3-4:30pm.

10/22 – Bay Area Craft Beer Festival at the Martinez Waterfront, 1pm-5pm. For more info visit:

ANNOUNCEMENTS The Martinez Grange No.853: a grass roots organization that began in 1867 open to all members of the family. Junior Grange for ages 5 to 13 1/2 years, and regular members are 14 and up. The Grange has ten thousand members and 207 chapters across California. For more info email: Pleasant Hill Baseball Association Registration Dates: Sat. Oct. 29 10am – 1pm; Sat. November 12 from 10:00am – 1:00pm and Wednesday, November 16 from 6:00pm – 9:00pm. PHBA Sports Complex, 2 Santa Barbara Road , Pleasant Hill. 1st child - $160.00, 2nd child - $140.00, 3rd child or more - $100. You can buddy up with a friend when you register, if this is your first year playing. To register or for more information please visit our website: Martinez CERT Classes are held on Saturdays, Oct 1st & 8th, 8am-1:30pm and Tuesdays, Oct. 4th, 11th, 18th & 25th 6:30pm- 9:30pm. Contra Costa Animal Services Facility, 4800 Imhoff Place, Mtz. To register, contact the CERT program administrators at martinez.cert@ or Lieutenant Aaron Roth at or call 925228-0911. The 4th of July Commission welcomes people with new ideas and planning skills.  Community Room at City Hall. Wed. Oct. 19, 7p.m.; Wed. Nov. 16, 7p.m.; (No meeting in December). Contact Jim Bonato at

At the library Pleasant Hill:

Wednesdays. - Mother Goose Storytime, ages 0-3. 11:15-11:45am. Fridays 1:15-1:45pm.

10/11 - Roald Dahl Reading Discussion. The October city read is Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach. Book club members and new participants are invited, 6:30-7:30pm. 10/12 – Teen Advisory Group. Teens can make a positive difference for themselves and their peers. Ages 13-18. Room A, 3:30-5pm. 10/18 - Peach Party. Kids of all ages will enjoy crafts, games and contests, and more tied to the book the whole city is reading: James and the Giant Peach. 6:308pm. 10/25 - Halloween Storytime. Don’t miss this special spooky family storytime packed with not-so-scary songs and stories. Come in costume! 6:30-7pm.


Mondays – Picture Book Storytime, ages 3-6. 1:30-2:15pm. Tuesdays – Mother Goose Storytime, ages 0-3. 10:30-11am. Tuesdays – Book Buddy. After school drop in. 2-4pm 10/11 – Listen While You Lego. Preschoolers, 3:30-4:30pm. 10/12, 19 & 26 – Cool Science. ‘States of Matter’ workshop for K-3rd grade. 2:303:30. 10/15 – Friends of Mtz Library Book Sale. 10am: Members only, 11-4pm: General public. Fill a bag for $5. 10/25 – Live Tarantulas! All ages, 3:304:30pm.

Reunions College Park High School Class of 1981 Reunion, Saturday Oct 8th, Contra Costa Country Club, 6:30 11:30. Food, drinks and dancing, $65.00 per person. Email Wendy Sherril at wendys100@ for details or view Facebook and

October 2011

Page 27

Serious Athletes Cheer Gone are the days when cheerleaders stood on the sidelines without breaking a sweat and “rah rah’d” while shaking pom poms. Today’s cheerleaders participate in a heavy-duty contact sport that demands a high level of athleticism, strength, flexibility, balance and endurance, all of which are driven by the power of the core. Cheer now requires a high level of discipline, long practice hours, and infinite bravery. According to the Sports Injury Center and National Cheer Safety Foundation, over 70% of cheerleading injuries are strains, sprains and soft tissue injuries, and cheerleading accounts for over 65% of the catastrophic injuries in female sports. The athletic demands of today’s cheer can no longer be ignored. These young athletes (most aged

By Tonya Marie Amos, Aspire Pilates 5-18, unless they continue through col Tonya Marie Amos danced proful and healthy. lege and professionally) dance hard, lift fessionally in New York for 15 years So whether you’re a solid base or their teammates overhead, tumble like before opening her studio, Aspire a flyer who craves anti-gravity, you gymnasts and get tossed around like need to cross train for success. A strong Pilates Center in Concord. She is a confetti at a wedding. Take a moment to fully certified Pilates instructor with conditioning program starts with solthink about the strength it takes to do over 1000 hours of training including id Core strength, flexibility, balance, all that! It’s no wonder that hamstrings healthy body mechanics, and addresses advanced certifications in Movement and groins get pulled, backs get injured, Medicine, Scoliosis, Osteoporosis, Pre/ the muscular imbalances of the sport. knees, ankles and wrists get sprained, Post Natal and Pilates For Golf. For Don’t let the smile and pep fool you. and shoulders get dislocated. And bemore information, contact please call Cheerleading deserves serious respect. cause cheerleaders often start stunting (925) 680-4400 or go to www.AspirePiTrain both your body and mind for very young, there is a high potential for success. Go Team! strain on immature joint structures that may not have yet developed the muscularity to keep the joints stable. By Janet Concepcion-Manalo, D.D.S. The best coaches take conditioning seriously and stress safety. They health problem.  The ADA urges us to It’s been a year since I gave birth drill basics, teach progressions, and do recognize that children’s teeth are susto a baby girl, and like many mothers, I a great job trying to keep their teams have had the privilege of watching every ceptible to decay as soon as they erupt. healthy. But with the high number of Based on their guidelines, here are milestone my child has reached − from injuries sustained performing super husimple steps for healthy beginnings: the first feeding to the introduction man feats, it is clear that cheerleading • As early as infancy, wipe the gums to solids, to the emergence of her first has developed into a sport that deserves gently with dampened cotton after teeth. athletic kudos and requires a high level feeding or intake of medications. Do Every phase in a baby’s growth of cross training in order to be successthe same if food or milk is expelled as comes with a demand for nutrition vomit; the acidity is destructive to the from different food sources. As teeth tooth enamel. move into position, they also become • Urge family or caregivers to follow susceptible to tooth decay. Many parproper oral hygiene practices during ents don’t realize the importance of developing healthy oral care early on. Baby the time you entrust your child to their teeth will not be replaced by permanent care. teeth for about 6 to 12 years. That means • Consult your dentist within 6 months the primary teeth will serve the child for of the first tooth’s appearance. many years. Moreover, they will serve as • A small investment of your time and a guide for permanent teeth to be in the patience is vital in giving your child a healthy smile for years to come.  proper position. A statement made by the American For more information please conDental Association recognizes tooth de- tact Dr. Concepcion-Manaol at Parkcay as an infectious disease and a public way Smiles Dental, 925-229-8890.

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Page 28

October 2011

Art World UnConfidential Regular readers of “Art World UnConfidential” know that I enthusiastically encourage people to incorporate all forms of art into daily life, from an individual’s wardrobe to their home and work environments. Displaying art in the home is a wonderfully positive and personal connection to the talents and ideas of artists in our communities and around the world. One such media is functional pottery, which conveys that warm and useful feeling as much as any other form of creative expression. From handmade bowls and cups to platters and teapots, pottery can perform as food servers, containers, and other vessels as well as art pieces, providing form and color to your table. A dinner setting that includes beautiful hand-thrown pottery presents

By Tony Michael Vecchio Kean’s work and that of three other a statement of functional elegance participating artists can be seen in a along with visual diversity. Beyond the new exhibition at the Lafayette Gallery. table, interesting and colorful plant “Textures, Layers, and Lines” will be on containers, for example, are an artist’s display from October 11 to 29, with an perfect complement for plants, flowartist reception on Friday, October 14, ers, and small trees. Such pots frame nature’s beauty with a deliberate display from 5pm to 8pm. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11am of human personality. to 5pm and located at 50 Lafayette Cir Martha Kean has been working in cle in Lafayette. For information, see clay for more than 35 years. With the intent to be aesthetically pleasing, Kean Other art happenings this month works primarily in functional pottery. include the 9th annual Pleasant Hill “I particularly like the idea of people Art, Jazz, & Wine Festival on Saturday, using and enjoying my pots in their October 8 from 10am to 9pm and Suneveryday lives,” says Kean. “I work in stoneware, fired in reduction, oxidation, day, October 9, from 10am to 5pm. The Pleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce or salt.” Working out of her own studio, Kean is active in the Walnut Creek Clay sponsors this fun festival as thousands Arts Guild (CAG) and is also a member of residents and visitors stroll along Crescent Drive enjoying art, enterand current director of the cooperative tainment, food, and superb jazz. The Lafayette Gallery. “One of the wonderDanville Village Theatre Art Gallery’s ful things about clay is that there is always so much still to learn,” says Kean. exhibition, “Offerings; Works of Text and Image,” continues its run through “I continue to take classes and share October 29. The Alamo-Danville Artinformation with friends.”

ists’ Society art exhibition, “Artistic Reflections,” continues through October 23 at the Blackhawk Art Gallery in Blackhawk Plaza. For more information, contact Tony Michael Vecchio at View his collage illustrations and paintings at shop/WabiSabiDaddi, and selected work at the Blackhawk Gallery.

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P.H. Reads About a Boy and a Peach By Patrick Remer, Children’s Librarian, Pleasant Hill Library for families to share In celebration of together. the 50th anniversary Copies of the book of the city of Pleasant or the audiobook can Hill and the 50th annibe checked out at the versary of the Pleasant library. We are also Hill Library, the library partnering with local is getting everyone in schools to get free coptown to read and share ies of the book directly a 50-year old clasinto the hands of young sic this month: Roald readers. Dahl’s, James and the Throughout the Giant Peach! month of October, This is the very first readers of all ages are Pleasant Hill Reads, encouraged to comand while most City ment on the story by writing their Reads programs focus on literature thoughts on a paper peach and posting for adults, this year’s selection is for it on the library’s peach tree. the whole family.  Dahl’s adventure of On Tuesday, October 18th at a very clever boy who goes on an ex6:30pm, the library is hosting a giant traordinary adventure in an airborne Peach Party. Entire families will enjoy peach will delight anyone who is a games, crafts, and more - all tied to kid, has a kid, or ever was a kid! Dahl’s the book. book is a fun and whimsical fantasy

PHBA Adds New League As an alternative to playing high school baseball, Pleasant Hill Baseball Association is starting up Hardball teams for 16-18-year-old boys for the upcoming 2012 spring season. Aspects of the new league include playing with wooden bats, pitching opportunities for all players and paid umpires.

Jim Goonan, Head Commissioner, said that “We are trying to build a league for high school boys to play and we are looking to build an inter-league with other neighboring cities.” More information can be found on the PHBA website: and if you have questions email

Martinez Opera Update Martinez Opera Contra Costa presents “Belle Voci,” Beautiful Voices Concert on Saturday, October 15th at Telfer Hall in Martinez. Enjoy an enchanted evening of fine food and beautiful voices from the Bay Area. Featured artists include Tenor, Michael Desnoyers, Baritone, Torlef Borsting and Soprano, Kimber-

ly Twesme. No Host cocktails begin at 5:30pm, the buffet diner at 6:00pm and the show at 7:00pm. Reserved seating is $45.00 per person. To purchase by credit card please visit: Proceeds benefit MTZO 2012 Season and Outreach programs. For more information, please call 925-372-6657. 

Page 29

W.C. Elks Host Eagle Court of Honor

Walnut Creek Elks Lodge honors Kyle Hendricks as outstanding local citizen with the Award of Eagle Scout, the highest honor that can be awarded to a Boy Scout. Kyle is the 23rd Eagle Scout in Troop 1811. He is a resident of Walnut Creek, graduated from Las Lomas High School and is on his way to Colorado State University as Chemistry major. He has received 23 merit badges, the Triple Crown Award with a special project for Native Bird Connections (NBC). He has directed hun-

dreds of volunteer hours to get salvaged wood siding to fabricate barn owl boxes for nesting sites in Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, as well as other locations. The event was made unique with a special guest brought it by Jenny Papka from Native Bird Connections - an American eagle! Kyle received the Elks Lodge certificate of achievement, and an American flag presented by Garrick Gouvia, ER and Ed O’Connell , Chapter representative.

Veteran’s Day Outreach and Celebration

The 2nd Annual Veteran’s Day Outreach and Celebration will take place at St. Andrews Church on November 11, at 1601 Mary Drive in Pleasant Hill from 7:30am to 11am. The mission of this event is to “match” our veterans of all ages and wars with the resources they might not otherwise be aware of or have access to.  There will be an array of FREE resources including:  free legal advice table, free benefits information from Contra Costa County, job placement from EDD and much more!

The event is put together by a full community representation of committee members of Pleasant Hill Rotary, Martinez Rotary, Walnut Creek Elks Club, Pleasant Hill Lions Club and others. Please join us in honoring all veterans and their families for the sacrifices they have made and continue to make, and to remember our fallen heroes and those who currently serve. A free breakfast will be served at 8am and transportation will be provided if needed. Please RSVP to Jessica@

Page 30


October 2011

Summer Sneak Peak at Medicine

By Jessica Gardner, Senior, College Park take blood pressure, suture, have ethical This summer I attended the Nation- fly on an airplane alone without knowU.S. debates, and even viewed an actual suring a single person so I was a little bit al Youth Leadership Forum on Medi Our groups visited different places. gery. scared. When I arrived at camp, there cine in Boston and it was an awesome One day we visited medical schools in When we weren’t in our med were about 430 other high school stuexperience. I signed up for the sumthe New England area. My group went groups, we enjoyed variety show night, dents. Some had traveled with friends mer camp in early January not knowto Tufts Medical School; other groups game and movie night, and a cruise ing much about the program except that and some, like me, didn’t know anywent to Harvard Medical School, around the Boston harbor. Also, since body. it was a summer camp for high school University of Connecticut School of Boston is a very historical place, we We were soon split up into our students who are interested in going Medicine, and New England School of spent the day in Harvard Square, medical groups of about 25 students into medicine. NYLF is held in ten difOsteopathic Medicine. We got to talk Downtown Boston, and Quincy Market. apiece, and each group was lead by a ferent cities around the United States to medical students and learn how the NYLF opened my eyes to all the with two in California, but I chose to go faculty advisor. Each group was named admission process works. Another day different fields and aspects of medicine after an important person in science. to Boston because I’ve never been there we visited hospitals to get a sneak peak and allowed me to listen to doctors and I was in the Reed group. I had no idea before and it’s a place known for great at what it would be like to be a doctor. other medical professionals talk about that I would become so close with my medicine. Our groups also visited hospitals that their experiences. You really couldn’t get This would be the first time I would group, all from different parts of the included: Boston Children’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, Shrin- this exposure anywhere else, and it was a once in a life time opportunity. So for ers Children’s Hospital, Harvard Mediall you future doctors out there or if you cal Center, and Boston MedFlight. Story Submitted by Deborah Dawson interested in medicine, I highly recom Each medical group did different mend NYLF summer camp. Besides all simulations. For example, we simuer kids how much fun art is. Bailey has Aspiring artist and Morello Park the knowledge you will gain, you will lated the MATCH, which is the procattended Art in the Park since she was 2nd grader Bailey Robinson, was kept also make awesome friends from all ess of how medical students are placed a baby but never dreamed she would busy all day painting faces at the 42nd around the U.S., and have the opportuin their residency programs. We also get this chance to share doing what she annual Art in the Park in Martinez on did a disaster triage simulation that was nity to explore a new city! August 21st. Cathy Riggs and RC Ferris loves. Bailey said, “It was so fun to get For more information on this proa lot of fun and kids really got into it. to make other kids happy doing what of The Martinez Arts Association gave gram, visit: In our med groups we learned how to Bailey her big break and the experience makes me happy. It was neat to have other people tell me they liked what of a lifetime after being approached by I was doing and that I should do this Bailey’s grandmother, Deborah Dawson. Ms. Dawson came up with the idea when I grow up. To me it seems easy.” Bailey loves to work with waterafter watching Bailey spend the entire color, acrylics, colored pencils and rainsummer decorating her own face and bow Sharpies. She draws every day and arms with flowers and swirls, and turnis almost never seen without a sketching friends and family members into book in hand. She also loves making kittens, butterflies and zombies. Specialist in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics things for her doll house out of poly Bailey has been painting since she was two and hopes to someday work for mer clay and is starting to learn jewelry 401 GREGORY LANE, SUITE 126 Disney or Pixar, or be able to teach oth- making. PLEASANT HILL, CA 94523

Young at Art


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October 2011

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October 2011

Page 32

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 8TH; 10AM - 6PM SUNDAY, OCTOBER 9 TH; 10AM - 5PM DOWNTOWN PLEASANT HILL ON CRESCENT DRIVE Award winning Art, Jazz & Wine Fest returns to downtown Pleasant Hill with continuous live music, arts & crafts, food, premium wines, microbrews, and childrens’ entertainment, including the return of Capt’n Jack Spareribs.



11:00 - 12:15 .....Jambalaya Jazztet 12:45 - 2:00 ....King Cosby Feat. Joyce Grant 2:30 - 3:45 ......Tamsen Donner Band 4:15 - 5:45 .......En Vivo 6:30 - 8:45 ......Aja Vu

11:30 - 12:30 ....Elizabeth Hunnicutt 1:00 - 2:30 ......Delta Dogs 3:00 - 5:00.....Cover2Cover

Plus! Saturday Evening Concert on the Plaza with Aja Vu starting at 6:30pm KIDS’ ENTERTAINMENT AND ACTIVITIES SCHEDULE


Macaroni Kids Craft Experience .............................. 10 am - 3 pm Face Painting by Hollis Banks ................................... 11 am - 3 pm Boswick the Clown ..................................................... 11 am Musical Adventures with Andrea Gaspari .............. 12 noon The Juggling Genius, Daniel DaVinci ....................... 1 - 3 pm Gemar The Magician ................................................. 3pm Capt’n Jack Spareribs ............................................... 4:30 pm


Macaroni Kids Craft Experience ......................... 10 am - 3 pm Crafts with Sequoia Day Care ............................. 10 am - 3 pm Boswick the Clown ................................................ 11 am Face Painting by Hollis Banks .............................. 11 am - 3 pm Musical Adventures with Andrea Gaspari ......... 12 noon Marcus the Juggler ............................................... 2 pm Encore Gymnastic’s Acrobatic Show Teams ...... 3pm Capt’n Jack Spareribs .......................................... 4:30 pm

Thank you to our event sponsors

Graphic Design Donated by Meghan Mahler Design

For More Information: (925) 687-0700

October 2011 Community Focus  
October 2011 Community Focus  

Community Newspaper for seniors, children and everyone in between. For Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Pacheco, Lafayette and Walnut Creek