Inside Land Park July 2021

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FROM ONE MCCLATCHY GRADUTE TO ANOTHER

CONGRATULATIONS CLASS OF 2021! Kareem Abdalla Blake Aboueljoud Hibah Ahmed Berenize Alcala Pinon Michael Alongi Natalie Alvarez Tania Amey Aidan Anderson Summers Taylor Ansell Muhibullah Anwari Mustafa Anwari Jose Arandia-Martinez Alyssa Archuleta Lauren Archuleta Gabriela Arguello Geraldin Arias Marcelino Arrizon Anna Arzbaecher Colin Austin Richard Avila Jose Vela Baker Andrea Balderas-Gonzalez Daniel Baradat Soleil Barbour-Berson Jacob Barros Rory Batey Shamim Bayat Marco Bazan Jennifer Becerra Adrianna Beckham Samrawit Belete Angelly Bernal-Rico Christopher Bevens Ethan Bianchi Katelyn Bier Robert Bonsignore Hailey Bowland Destiney Boyce Tay-John Brandon Zarrea Breedlove Liam Bren Quetzal Brewster Maddison Brodeur Lily Brown Matthew Brown Omari Brown Rhys Brown Kayla Brunell Amiri Buckner Andre’ Burce Tyler Busch Emily Cabrera Sitie Cai Jaden Calhoun Azalia Camara Devin Campbell Deselia Cardenas Jasmine Carrillo-Barajas Ariel Castro Gabriela Castro Lily Chan Devin Chang Ricardo Chavez-Cornejo

Jaqueline Chavez-Trejo Jimmy Chen Ella Christiansen Brian Cisneros Liam Clayton Hannah Clifton Anna Colatrella Samantha Collier Jayla Colvin Kenneth Ashton Cook-McKnight Jack Costa Luna Costa Ximena Cruz-Diaz Kira Cunningham Emilio Damian-Hernandez Anthony Dang Caila Davis Antonio Davis-Yuke Julian De La Rosa Brian Dela Cruz Ashleigh Dendas Christina DeNecochea Kai Derego-Frankel Paden Diaz Yenia Diaz Yesenia Diaz Destiny Dixon Tyjohn Dossman Margaret Downs Demi Dupavillon Eugene Eaton Nataly Echeverria Ortiz Daryll Edwards Andrew Eidanizadeh Emelia-Rose Engel Fernando Espino Diego Espinosa Luis Antonio Espinoza Albarran Blanca Estrada Samantha Estrada Delaney Evans Isabella Fehringer Imani Felix Francisco Fierros Flores Maeve Fine Claire Finney Madaya Fletcher Manuel Flores Marcos Flores Isabella Florez Carlie Floyd Samuel Fonseca Ulani Fonseca Lily Foster Sophia Frandsen Devin Freeman-Robinson Robert Fry Victoria Fuel Giovanni Galindo-Reyes James Gallardo Monica Galvan Jack Galvez Briana Garcia

Caleb Garcia Harmony Garcia Arleene Garcia Gonzalez Romy Gavia Aidan Gee Eden Getahun Jennifer Goi Alyssa Gomez Esteban Gomez Adriana Gonzalez Nihayah Gonzalez SoÀa Gonzalez Paola Gonzalez Hernandez Bernardino Gonzalez Marquez Naomi Goodloe Shakira Grant Molly Grattridge Alexa Gray Olivia Green Rachit Gusain Briana Guster Nadia Gutierrez Michael Guzman Lillyana Habblett Khadija Hamdani Lindsay Hatch John Hawley Julia Heckey Samuel Hemesath Lucas Henderson Zandor Henderson Leah Her Aryanna Hernandez Fabian Hernandez Jesus Hernandez Luis Hernandez Gonzalez Vania Hernandez Miranda Giselle Hernandez Parra Edgar Hernandez Solis Jack Herrera Joaquin Herrerra Elijah Hightower Julian Hightower Calix Ho Isiah Holquin Sophia Huezo Aiden Hughes James Hunter Nicolas Ibarra Evelyn Ildefonso Ne Kayla Irvin Higginbotham Cara Ishisaka Lashell Jackson Owen Jackson Felix Janssen Alexis Jarquin Sophia Jerkovich Maximus Jernigan David Johnson Larry Johnson Johniel Josol Ashley Jun Katherine Kawamoto

Aldina Kelecija Grace Kennedy Cole Kerksieck Kaitlyn Khamsa David King Glory King Andrew Klassen Grace Kline Morgan Kline Zoe Koenigsaecker Brett Kojima Fono-Ki-Moana KolokihakauÀsi Katherine Krinsky Nicholas Kuntz Madeline Kwong Giselle Lagunas Margo Landry Eva Lane Bryce Laney Jordan Langley Ethan Latimer Colin Le Joseph Le Minh Anh Le Berenis Ledesma Leither Lee Mckenlee Lee Nikkie Lee Nikolaus Legard Angelina Li Junru Li Joel Lima Damon Lin Kaiyu - KAI Lin Lucy Lindgren Huanting Liu Xingqing Liu Byron Longero Anthony Lopez Dominic Lopez Jessica Lopez Maricela Lopez Juan Lopez-Mendoza Nancy Lor Arianna Luecke Derek Lum Wen Jun Ma Kylie Macasias Joseph Macias Benjamin Mageno Zoe Maggio Daniel Maldonado Pastora Sophia Mandella Megan Marin Kamania Marshall-GrifÀn Keoni Martin Cecilia Martinez Karina Martinez Kevin Martinez Lisbeth Martinez Mia Martinez Omayra Martinez Aleman

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Ava Mascoe-Talbott Ruhullah Masomee Alanna Matheny Tre’Von Mathis Reese Matsumoto Ellen McCallin Delaney Mccarthy Clare Mccarty Finnegan Mcfetridge Destiny McGregor Michael McKinney Emma Meads Emily Mejia Dominique Mendoza Maya Mendoza Lauren Mercer Arielle Miller Elizabeth Miller Chloee Mills Benjamin Mitchell Claire Mitchell Kimani Mitchell Vincent Monjaras Alyssa Montejano Thalia Moore Angelina Morales Jacob Morales Romeo Morales Daniel Moreno Jaimie Moreno Xavier Moreno Liliana Moreno Diaz Flavio Moreno Santana Eduardo Moreno-Meza Helen Morris Nicholas Mui Lydia Murry Mark Mustybrook Kurtis Nammavongsa Kevin Nash Emiliano Navarrete Miley Nelsenador Xavier Nelson Nevaeh Newman Zawadi Ng’ang’a Bailey Nittka Wendy Noguera Hernandez Emily Nye Bridget O’Neil Jackson Oakes Tucker Oakes Edrick Olvera Melchor Alejandro Ordonez John Oropeza Isaac Ortega Britney Ortiz Marisa Ortiz Theo Osborn Jose Oseguera Chloe Otterson-Taylor Jenan Ozeir Tamana Panahi Sophia Peavy

Alia Peer-Baadqir Anahi Perez Duran Isaac Perez-Yost Ethan Pham Bellicianna Piscitello Kaley Poon Makyla Preston Christian Printy Nilab Quraishi Nazia Rahimi Isabella Ramirez Osvaldo Ramirez Victorio Ramirez Julian Raymundo Erika Razo Christian Razon Mariah Regalado Andrew Reyes Jedidiah Reyna Kurtis Reynolds Olivia Richardson Claire Rios Violet Roberts Caillou Rodriguez Cynthia Rodriguez Haley Rodriguez Raul Rodriguez Josue Rodriguez Munoz Paulina Rodriguez Navarro Cynthia Rodriguez-Nieves Oscar Rojas Castillo Esmeralda Sosa Roldan Emiko Ropp Alondra Rosas Marcos Rosas Ilene Ruelas Mateo Ruiz Daniel Rusnak Simone Sackett Fate Saephan Garcia Benjamin Saetern Haroon SaÀ Sanaullah SaÀ Elias Salazar Maximiliano Sanabia Del Toro Robert Sanchez Sandi Sanchez David Sandoval-Sanchez Diego Santos Ronish Sapkota Parviz Sarwari Grace Saubulinayau Carson Schmidt Isabella Schneider Kaitlin Seifert Fernando Sencion Cassandra Serrato Lindsey Shintaku Benjamin Silva Nancy Silva Lizbeth Silva-Gomez Stefan Simeonov Jane Singley Derek Smith Jade Smith-Antos Tk Soeuth Nicole Solis Manuel Solis Aguilar Ivette Soto Gutierrez Allyson Spurlock

Class of 1993 Jayde Stafford Ellie Stehr Taylor Stewart Devin Stover Jacob Strader Peter Sunseri Christopher Synco Alyssa Takimoto Kevin Tan Emily Thao Melonie Thao Ryan Thao Tomyson Thao Vince Thao Samuel Thomas Emma Thompson Kamari Thwaites Nicholas Alexander Tidwell Trevor Tillett Dulcemaria Tinoco Kate Tobie Jolie Topete Angelique Tran Kate Tully Ella Turkie Iris Tyzzer Cristopher Uribe Alexios Vakis Angelina Valdez Mikaela Van De Heetkamp Yuuto Van Loben Sels Parker Van Ostrand Nelson Vang Sanphon Vang Tiffany Vang Natalie Vasquez Boyens Vega Omar Vera Hernandez Maximilian Von Rotz Elijah Vucago Danny Vue Adam Wadhwani Mia Waki Trinity Watson Lauren Wen Vivian White Makayla Whitford Clyde Whitman Anastasia Williams Lauren Williams Avery Willis Dylan Wyckoff Melody Xayavong Emily Xiong Lewis Xiong Hector Yabes Marcus Yamamoto Jake Yancey Jaelynn Yang Leilani Yang Benjamin Yeargain Michelle Yehya Terrance Yip Abbey Yoas Nixie Young Osvaldo Zamudio Lilianna Zebley Yinglin Zhang Peiqi Zhou Junjie Zhu Liangyu Zhu

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COVER ARTIST

3104 O St. #120, Sac. CA 95816 (Mail Only)

HEATHER HOGAN Heather Hogan makes statement art for vibrant and tenacious people who are inspired by our interconnectedness on a molecular, social and universal level. Hogan will be participating in Sac Open Studios, Sept. 11–12, in South Land Park. Shown: “Meander,” mixed media on paper, 22 inches by 30 inches. This piece is for sale at $300. Visit tenaciousgoods.com.

info@insidepublications.com PUBLISHER Cecily Hastings EDITOR Cathryn Rakich editor@insidepublications.com PRODUCTION M.J. McFarland DESIGN Cindy Fuller PHOTOGRAPHY Linda Smolek, Aniko Kiezel @anikophotos AD COORDINATION Michele Mazzera DISTRIBUTION Info@insidepublications.com or visit insidesacramento.com ACCOUNTING Daniel Nardinelli, COO, daniel@insidepublications.com

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JULY 2021 VOL. 24 • ISSUE 6 6 10 16 18 20 22 26 28 30 32 34 36 40 41 42 44 46 48 49 50 52 54

Publisher's Desk Out & About Pocket Beat Meet Your Neighbor Inside The County Open House City Beat Fighting For A Cure Animals & Their Allies Nursery With Purpose Giving Back Building Our Future Devil's Duo Garden Jabber Farm To Fork The Art Of Public Speaking Spirit Matters Sports Authority Protecting The Parkway Getting There Open Studio Restaurant Insider


Kim Squaglia

Let Freedom Ring Independence Day was achieved by individuals coming together for a common goal. Like in a neighborhood--we all have our own homes, but we’re stronger as one. Our community keeps growing stronger every day, and that’s something to celebrate.

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BRIDGE TO PEACE

Joe Pane, Josh Pane and Ronnie Pane. Photo by Aniko Kiezel

FALLEN SPD OFFICER TARA O’SULLIVAN MEMORIALIZED BY H STREET SPAN

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acramento Police Officer Tara O’Sullivan was gunned down during a domestic disturbance call in June 2019. Her death sent the region into mourning. I’ll never forget waving our American flag on the Business 80 overpass as her funeral procession slowly moved from Rocklin to Elk Grove. The idea for a beautiful tribute to Tara began over cups of coffee between friends earlier this year.

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“Our coffee group was deeply saddened when Sacramento Police Officer Tara O’Sullivan was killed,” says Joe Pane, an SPD officer from 1979 to 2007. “I started looking into her story, and what we could do to recognize this amazing young woman who met a tragic end. And then, given her strong ties to East Sac, we thought why not the H Street Bridge over the American River by Sac State?” Tara O’Sullivan was born and raised in Pleasant Hill. She grew up wanting to be a cop, and became an Explorer Scout with Pleasant Hill police while in high school. “SPD Chief Daniel Hahn told me that she moved to Sac State to be a cop, majoring in child development because she felt like that would help her in her profession,” Pane says.

“When she moved to Sacramento, she rented a Midtown apartment I owned,” says Ronnie Pane, Joe’s cousin, who retired as chief sergeant at arms for the California Assembly after 41 years. Both cousins, and Joe’s brother, Josh Pane— who served on the City Council from 1989 to 1994—live in East Sacramento and proudly support law enforcement. The three men put together an email to friends and contacts seeking support for the O’Sullivan memorial. The response was overwhelming. “When emails were too numerous for my wife Sue to manage, we posted a Change.org online petition,” Joe says. Nearly 5,000 supporters joined the effort. Their plan went like this: They met with Chief Hahn, the Sacramento Police Officers Association, City Councilmember Jeff Harris, Sac State

President Robert Nelsen, the rest of the City Council, the city’s public works department, and numerous business and neighborhood groups, including those from River Park and Meadowview. Tara was the first female graduate of an inaugural Sac State class called Law Enforcement Candidate Scholars’ Program, which prepares leaders for law enforcement. The director is Dr. Shelby Moffatt, a former SPD officer who became a Sac State professor. Tara was killed in the North Sac neighborhood of Redwood Park. On that tragic day, there were two houses on Redwood Street that involved previous domestic violence calls. Officers told the female victim that if she would get her possessions together, they would come back to keep the peace while she moved out.


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“When I was an officer, I worried about two things every day—that I would be in an auto accident or, worse case, that I’d be shot,” Joe Pane says. “The auto accident and the sniper never left my mind, or that of my family, for 28 years.”

When Tara and her training officer arrived at the Redwood Street location, they knew a man there might have access to guns. But they were unsure of his location. They announced they were there only to help remove some items from the house. As they entered the house, the man opened fire with a rifle. Tara was hit

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and mortally wounded. The shooter kept firing and prevented officers from reaching Tara for the 45 minutes it took her to die. All while he disgustingly taunted and cursed the fallen officer. As a result of the Panes’ efforts, the City Council unanimously approved the bridge dedication May 26.

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BY R.E. GRASWICH

changed its policy and adopted language used by San Francisco. The new language lets police use deadly he Sacramento City Council force “when reasonable alternatives finally admitted some police have been exhausted or are not emergencies aren’t resolved with calm, patient negotiation. feasible and the officer reasonably believes, based on the totality of the Backpedaling after criticism from circumstances, that such force is the public and Police Chief Daniel necessary.” Hahn, the City Council revised its The earlier language written by policy on deadly force. The council Steinberg said officers could only acknowledged there are times when use deadly force as a “last resort.” It officers must quickly react by shooting continued, “Last resort means that a suspect. peace offi cers shall use tactics and The controversy was highlighted techniques that may persuade the in June editions of Inside Sacramento suspect to voluntarily comply or may after Mayor Darrell Steinberg mitigate the need to use a higher level proposed a deadly force policy that of force to resolve the situation safely.” required police to talk to suspects Hahn and his leadership team in all cases, even ambushes and were pleased with the revised policy. workplace or school shootings. Steinberg said, “Let’s move forward Hahn told Inside Sacramento, together.” “Our officers won’t be able to defend themselves or the public.” R.E. Graswich can be reached at Three weeks after approving regraswich@icloud.com. n the Steinberg proposal, the council

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“Chief Hahn sent me the following text the day after it passed,” Joe says, sharing the text: “Thanks so much for your support on the bridge proposal approved by Council last night—the Tara O’Sullivan Memorial Bridge. Thank you, Joe, and I appreciate you and your brother. That means a lot to us as our city should understand what Tara and her family sacrificed for all of us, and your efforts will help make sure we will never forget. Sadly, we were at preliminary hearing for the shooter right now, so God help us all.” The next steps are to design and install a memorial sign for the bridge. “Friends of East Sacramento—where I serve as a facility manager for our McKinley Park facilities—stepped up immediately to offer their financial support for the sign,” Joe says. “The nonprofit is going to work with other funding partners, including the SPOA, who want to help with the costs of the dedication.” “The dedication signage will be visible from both sides of the bridge. We’re just starting to work on the design,” Josh says. Supporters hope the H Street span can also be known as “The Bridge to Peace.” This reflects the sacrifice Tara O’Sullivan made for her family, her fellow officers and our community while doing her best to help keep the peace on that tragic day in June 2019. Cecily Hastings can be reached at publisher@insidepublications.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n


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Sustainable Station Sacramento Valley Station will include residential spaces, hotels and offices.

PLAN TURNS HISTORIC TRAIN DEPOT INTO ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY HUB

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he City Council recently approved the Sacramento Valley Station Area Plan, which will turn Sacramento’s historic train station at 401 I St. into one of the most sustainable public places in California. “This plan is more than four years in the making,” says project manager Greg Taylor. “The plan positions Sacramento as a regional center for sustainable transportation and a leader in sustainable design technologies, which will help combat climate change.” The plan has already earned the prestigious Living Community Challenge Vision Plan Certification for environmental innovation, making Sacramento the first city in the world to receive the designation.

JL By Jessica Laskey Out & About

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The plan is designed to connect pedestrians and transit users to infill development areas within the central city that include residential spaces, hotels and offices. All the buildings within the development will run on 100-percent renewable energy. The city hopes to begin construction by 2026.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING The City Council recently voted to commit $10 million to a new affordable housing complex on Stockton Boulevard. It’s the first expenditure from the $31.5 million housing fund created in the mid-year budget at the request of Mayor Darrell Steinberg that will come from the general fund and Measure U dollars. The planned 220 affordable apartments and townhomes will help fulfill the city’s commitment to invest at least $50 million in affordable housing along the Stockton Boulevard corridor to prevent displacement that might occur as a result of the new Aggie Square innovation district. Seventy-five percent of the units will be reserved for low-, very low- and extremely low-income tenants. Another

25 percent will be priced for those with moderate incomes (up to $60,410 for a family of four). In addition to the $10 million from the city, another $5 million from the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency will round out a $15 million loan to Mercy Housing to build the complex. “This investment is the first of many housing commitments made to neighborhoods surrounding the Aggie Square project and communities around Stockton Boulevard,” says District 6 Councilmember Eric Guerra. “Addressing the housing crisis head-on and offering job opportunities is the only way we can help our neighbors find economic freedom and help them realize their dreams in this city.”

TWENTY TWENTY The award-winning nonprofit literary performance series, Stories on Stage Sacramento, is celebrating the publication of its first anthology, “Twenty Twenty: A Stories on Stage Sacramento Anthology,” inspired by a year like no other.

The book contains 43 essays and short stories written by Northern California and guest authors, including Karen Bender, Anita Felicelli, Joan Frank, Debra Gwartney, Sands Hall, Pamela Houston, Vanessa Hua, Joshua Mohr and Peter Orner. Join SOSS on Friday, July 23, at 5 p.m. on Zoom for a book launch and readings by professional actors. On Wednesday, Aug. 11, from 1–4 p.m., SOSS hosts an in-person book launch reception at Capital Books on K Street. Sales from the anthology will support the nonprofit’s ongoing programming, including paying authors and actors for their work. For more information, visit storiesonstagesacramento.org.

EAST SAC IN BLOOM Have you noticed “East Sac in Bloom” signs scattered throughout the neighborhood and wondered what they were about? Well, you’re in good company! East Sac in Bloom is a new neighborhood event celebrating beautiful front yard spaces. Sponsored by Friends of East Sacramento, Inside


SAC HISTORY FUN

An English cottage garden is one of the winners in East Sac in Bloom. Photo by Linda Smolek. Sacramento and East Sacramento Realtor Ann Vuletich, the event is in its first year. Inspired by similar events in other cities, Vuletich created the contest to celebrate East Sac’s beautiful front yards and promote local businesses. “While we have an annual backyard garden tour, we didn’t have anything similar for our front yards. So I decided to create one,” she says. Neighbors nominated 13 yards for an award. Winners were “announced” May 1 when they spotted a sign in their front yard and found a canvas tote bag on their front porch filled with goodies, including the Inside Sacramento coffee table book, a gift card from Archival Gallery and a bouquet of flowers grown by local floral designer Mary Kuyper. Three judges evaluated each yard on five criteria: color, creativity, design, water-wise and “fit” with the architectural style of the home. Judges, all avid gardeners, were Kuyper, Vuletich and Tamara Engel. One of the winning gardens, surrounded by a short wooden fence, is a 3-year-old English cottage garden near the McKinley Rose Garden. The homeowner worked with Kathleen Harvey of Browerbird Landscapes and

Sam Alongi with Alongi Yardscapes to create and install the inviting garden.

gazes out over her garden, enjoying its colorful exuberance. Plans for next year include expanding the contest to recognize a public garden space, holding a tour to meet the winners and get gardening tips, and adding a new category for “most inviting front porch space.” Send other ideas for next year to info@ eastsacinbloom.com.

25 MILLION STITCHES Verge Center for the Arts is the first stop for “25 Million Stitches: One Stitch, One Refugee,” a traveling fiber art project showcasing 2,200 handsewn panels. The tapestry installation will be on display through Aug. 22. Created by Verge resident multi-media artist Jennifer Kim Sohn, the project is designed to bring awareness to the approximately 25 million people across the globe who have been to forced to flee their homelands n e m a r c Stage Sa tories on short stories by as a consequence of genocide, S A : y t n Twe ssays and “Twenty war, poverty, natural ontains e rnia authors. c ” y g lo o fo li a Anth C n disasters, targeted violence Norther and other grave threats. Alongi re-scaped approximately 3,000 Each panel is the result of hours of square feet of lawn and installed a handstitched labor by participants from low-water-use garden that feeds both 49 states and 36 countries across six people and pollinators. The homeowner continents. For more information, visit sits on a daybed on her second story and 25millionstitches.com or vergeart.com.

The Sacramento History Museum— which now has more followers on TikTok than any other museum in the world—has reopened for indoor visitation and resumed its most popular activities. Old Sacramento Underground Tour provides guests with the unique opportunity to explore what has been hidden beneath the city for more than 150 years. With the help of entertaining tour guides, guests explore excavated foundations, enclosed pathways and interesting archaeology exhibits, while hearing the sounds of 1860 street life. Tickets are $18 for adults, $12 for kids 6–17 and free for children 5 and younger. In Gold Fever!, participants take on historical personas to relive Sacramento’s early days of the Gold Rush and discover if they’ve successfully escaped floods, lost their gold dust to gambling, and survived fires, disease and the occasional steamboat explosion. Tickets are $12 per person. Kids 5 and younger are free. All tour tickets include complimentary admission to the Sacramento History Museum. For more information and an updated schedule, visit sachistorymuseum.org.

EMPOWERING WOMEN Women’s Empowerment is celebrating its 20th year providing paid job training, child care and support services to women and children to help break the cycle of homelessness. The nonprofit recently received a $25,000 grant from Kaiser Permanente Northern California Community Benefit Programs and a $20,000 grant from State Farm. “This is a milestone year for Women’s Empowerment, and we would not be here without the generous funding of local companies and foundations that are committed to ending homelessness for women and children in Sacramento,” says Lisa Culp, founding executive director of Women’s Empowerment. For more information, visit womensempowerment.org.

LOANER LIFE VESTS When you go out on the waterways this summer, make sure you’re wearing a life jacket. Don’t have one? Fire stations throughout the region offer life jackets on loan for the day or the weekend.

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More than 2,000 panels comprise “25 Million Stitches: One Stitch, One Refugee.”

Old Sacramento Underground Tour explores excavated foundations and enclosed pathways.

prevention, under “Safety Tips,” then “Water Safety.” Loaner life vests also are available through the county’s “Kids Don’t’ Float” program, which features numerous life vest borrowing stations along the American River Parkway. Borrow one for your child and return it when you are done. For a list of stations, visit regionalparks.saccounty. net, under “Activities,” then “Water Safety.”

DINOSAUR PLAY

“Lower (water) levels, like we are experiencing this year, can lead to exposed debris, as well as deceptive currents,” says Daniel Bowers, director of the city’s Office of Emergency Management. “Awareness of these

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conditions and the proper preparation— including the wearing of a life jacket— can literally be the difference between life and death.” For a list of fire stations offering life jackets, visit cityofsacramento.org/fire/

District 6 Councilmember Eric Guerra and local community residents recently gathered at the city’s oldest existing playground in Oki Park, located in the College Glenn neighborhood, to celebrate recent renovations. One of 175 park playgrounds overseen by the city of Sacramento, the Oki Park playground was installed in 1992. The new playground has a dinosaur-exploration theme that includes a flying Pterodactyl and T-Rex head, life-size dinosaur bones,

skulls and eggs, an exploration vehicle, stepping boulders and more. For more information on Oki Park amenities and the playground renovation, visit cityofsacramento.org/ parksandrec, under “Parks.”

WATER WISE Our region is expected to experience an extremely dry year, according to the Regional Water Authority. What can you do to help conserve water—and save money at the same time? The city offers a variety of rebates to help residents become more efficient with their water usage through turf conversions, irrigation upgrades, smart controllers, rain barrels, laundryto-landscape, high-efficiency toilets, washing machines and water fixtures. Customers can schedule a free virtual “Water Wise” house call by calling the city’s water conservation team at (916) 808-5605. There are also a variety of resources available at epa. gov/watersense, beyondthedrought.com, bewatersmart.info, saveourwater.com and through the city’s SAC311 mobile


(From left) Anaiah Morris, Devin Gates and Tiara Abraham are first-place winners in Scholarship for Young Choral Singers. app, which allows you to make nonemergency service requests or report water misuse. County residents can report water waste, get drought information and learn water-saving tips at sacramentocounty.net/ waterconservation.

SCHOLAR SINGERS Sacramento Master Singers has announced the winners of its annual Scholarship for Young Choral Singers to support the musical growth of local students. Winners for ages 20–22 are: first place, Anaiah Morris, Cosumnes River College; second place, Andrea Chea, Cosumnes River College; third place, Dayed Amituanai, Cosumnes River College. Winners for ages 17–19 are: first place, Devin Gates, Folsom Lake College; second place, Shawntell Livingston, Bear Creek High School; third place, Sarah Levy, Davis Senior High School. Winners for ages 14–16 are: first place, Tiara Abraham, UC Davis; second place, Kathryn Kasten, Saint Francis Catholic High School; third place, Raquel Lewis, Bradshaw Christian High School. Sacramento Master Singers also has been busy recording a series of digital performances to celebrate the changing seasons. Check it out on the YouTube channel or at mastersingers.org.

DOWNTOWN LIVE! The Downtown Sacramento Partnership is seeking local musicians and artists for its new entertainment series, Downtown LIVE!, featuring live music and art activations on five pop-up stages through Aug. 28. Entertainment is scheduled for Tuesdays through Saturdays from noon to 2 p.m. and 4–6 p.m. Locations are 12th and K; Ali Youssefi Square, 7th and K; Pony Express at the Old Sacramento Waterfront, 2nd and J; Bishop Gallegos Square, 11th between K and L; and the Embarcadero at the Old Sacramento Waterfront. Musicians and artists will be paid for their performances. For more information or to sign up as an entertainer for a two-hour time slot, visit godowntownsac.com.

BURNETT AWARDS The Sacramento History Alliance has presented the 2021 Burnett Awards to five honorees—The Sacramento Observer, Shasta Linen Supply, Iceland Ice Skating Rink, HUB International (formerly John O. Bronson Co.) and Taylor’s Market. The Burnett Awards are named in honor of the late Burnett Miller, a native Sacramentan, former mayor, community icon, philanthropist, business leader and one of the city’s most prominent history enthusiasts. Each year, the Sacramento History Alliance honors local legacy businesses that have stood the test of time and

contributed to the community culture in the Sacramento region. Funds raised from award ceremony tickets help support the Sacramento History Museum and Center for Sacramento History. For more information, visit sachistorymuseum. org, under “Events.”

INCLUSIVITY TRAINING Starting this month, the Midtown Association—in partnership with WEAVE, Sacramento LGBT Community Center, Sacramento Rainbow Chamber of Commerce, Faces Nightclub and Outword Media—presents “PRIDE, Pronouns & Progress: Gender Inclusion Training,” a new grant program and educational workshops. The hourlong virtual inclusivity training sessions are offered for free to Midtown and central city businesses, and focus on three primary topics: educating businesses about gender identities, gender rights in the workplace and beyond, and the importance of pronouns. “Everyone deserves to feel safe and seen when they come to work, patronize a business or walk through the streets of Midtown Sacramento,” says Beth Hassett, CEO of WEAVE. “When we all encourage people to show up as their true selves and make it easier to navigate their lives, it increases the chance that they will reach out for help if they need it and that the right help will be there for them.”

Businesses can apply to participate at exploremidtown.org/midtownpride.

CAPITOL MALL MARKET The seasonal Certified Farmers Market has returned to 6th Street and Capitol Mall, and is open Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. With more than 25 vendors, the weekly market also provides hot lunch options from Sacramento’s most popular food vendors, including Yolanda’s Tamales, Nash & Proper, Rosa’s Portuguese Bakery and What’s Poppin’ Kettle Corn.

SUTTER FORT MOVIES The Midtown Association’s popular “Movies at the Fort” has returned to Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park. The fun, free, open-air movie program features family-friendly films played on the fort’s historic exterior walls at the corner of 26th and L streets. On Saturday, July 10, enjoy “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” On Saturday, Aug. 14, watch “Up.” The community is invited to arrive at 7 p.m. with movies starting at approximately 8:45 p.m. Blankets and lawn chairs are welcome. Guests are asked to sit in physically distanced family units in line with all current guidelines. Tickets must be reserved in advance at exploremidtown.org.

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CALIFORNIA STAGE California Stage continues its exciting Social Distance Theater outdoor programming. This month’s “Music in the Courtyard Concert” features singer/ songwriter Jessica Malone on Saturday, July 3. The event opens at 7 p.m. with music from 8–10 p.m. Tickets are $15. As part of Second Saturday, July 10, enjoy an exhibition in the Courtyard Gallery from 4–7 p.m. The show features Jermaine Tilson’s vibrant paintings, Roy Tatman’s colorful

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Lambtrust.com wooden sculptures, and Gerry Mamola’s totems and wall pieces. California Stage is at 1719 25th St. For more information, visit calstage.org.

STAGE NINE To celebrate 30 years of retail success, Stage Nine Entertainment at the Old Sacramento Waterfront has installed inside the store a 13-foot, 500-pound replica of the iconic Warner Bros. water tower.

Stage Nine specializes in pop culture toys, gifts, games and more. Founded by Troy Carlson in the early ‘90s, the Stage Nine retail empire started as a small 500-squarefoot gift shop—then known as Old Sacramento Giftique —that specialized in model railroad products, souvenirs, Sacramento-themed apparel and unique gifts. Today, Stage Nine has expanded into an elaborate five-store, 8,000-squarefoot premier entertainment retail destination specializing in pop culture toys, gifts, games and more. For more information, visit stagenine.com.

WATER VAULT Construction of the McKinley Water Vault at McKinley Park is nearing completion. The FILL phase is done. The ENHANCE phase has started and is anticipated to be finished this summer. Over the next few months, expect temporary sidewalk and street closures, and pedestrian and jogging path detours, as irrigation and jogging paths are enhanced. For more information, visit cityofsacramento.org/ mckinleywatervault.

FOR AMERICA

“Mother Courage II” by Charles White is part of “For America” exhibit at Crocker Art Museum. Image by Google© The Charles White Archives. Courtesy of American Federation of Arts

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The Crocker Art Museum presents “For America: Paintings from the National Academy of Design” from July 3 through Oct. 3. Featuring 100 paintings created between 1809 and the present, this exhibition documents the history of American painting through the lens of the National Academy. Since its founding in 1825, the academy has required all academicians to donate a representative work to its collection.

Represented artists include Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer, William Merritt Chase, John Singer Sargent, Richard Estes, Lois Dodd, Andrew Wyeth, Maxfield Parrish, Cecilia Beaux, Wayne Thiebaud, Charles White and others. Looking for fun this summer? The Crocker also has tons of in-person and virtual art experiences for all ages. Visit crockerart.org/calendar for a complete list of offerings.

TOYROOM ODYSSEY Toyroom Gallery celebrates its 20th anniversary with the exhibition “Toyroom’s Odyssey—A 20-Year Art Trip” at the Russ Room, upstairs in Solomon’s Deli at 730 K St. Opening receptions are July 16 and 17 from 6–9 p.m. The art will be on display through Sept. 12. Artists include Shaunna Peterson, John Berger, Kim Scott, Robert Bowen, Carrie Cottini, Jack Howe, Bruce Gossett, Chuck Sperry, Shepard Fairey, Skinner, Charles Glaubitz, Kepi Ghoulie and Dennis Larkins. Founded by co-owners Craig Maclaine and John Soldano in 2001 in an unnamed alley in a building without an address, the gallery started as a way of “optimistically bringing popsurrealist and low-brow art to a public eagerly looking for brighter and more colorful times,” Maclaine says. The gallery was eventually named Toyroom and relocated to a space on K Street, where it lived until the 2008 recession forced it to move online. This exhibition marks its return to an inperson retail space. “Though many (artists) are missing from the saga, we feel this is a good representation of Toyroom’s odyssey,”


“Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” by Carrie Cottini is shown at Toyroom Gallery.

Maclaine says. For more information, visit toyroomgallery.com.

3-ARTIST SHOW Archival Gallery presents Davy Fiveash, Sean Royal and Richard Stein in a three-person exhibition July 6–31. The grouping promises interesting interplay among three very different artistic styles: Fiveash’s traditional still-life florals and collage; Royal’s contemporary textured wood and spray paint landscapes; and Stein’s graphic regional landscapes in bright colors. The gallery will be open for a Second Saturday reception July 10 at 5 p.m. Visitors also are welcome during normal business hours with no appointment needed, but masks or face coverings are required when indoors.

Happy 4 of July …Sacramento Style! th

HUMBLE SKY Veteran PR professional Stuart Greenbaum just released his first work of fiction, “Humble Sky,” a novella about the beauty of letting your imagination run wild. Through the life stories of protagonists Henry Bakersfeld, an ingenious old man living with dementia, and Sherman, a curious young boy living in the Bronx, readers learn to appreciate the intersection of cosmology and philosophy, curiosity, humility and the range of ages of the uninhibited mind. Greenbaum has written and edited several nonfiction books, and directed numerous statewide and national initiatives to influence public behavior on social concerns involving health, education, environment, safety and

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longevity. He recently concluded his second term as a governor’s appointee to the California Commission on Aging. Purchase “Humble Sky” for $10 at book.humblesky.net.

SAC MOTORCYCLING

“The Delta - Venice Island” by Richard Stein is on display at Archival Gallery.

This month, native Sacramentan, retired educator and writer Kimberly Reed Edwards is celebrating the publication of her book, “Sacramento Motorcycling: A Capital City Tradition.” The book, published by The History Press, covers the first 50 years, 1910–1960, of what Edwards calls “the greatest sport in the world” right here in Sacramento. “I wanted to learn about the people and their habits, influenced by the roaring two-wheeler that came to town,” says Edwards, whose father was a motorcycle dealer at 1520 16th St. in the 1950s. “This is our history—the pathfinders, many of whom we’ve never heard about but who played important roles in the retail community, the chamber of commerce, civic positions, the police department—even the judicial system.” The book includes a deep dive on Sacramento’s history as a motorcycle

hub, as well as more than 100 photos and fascinating narratives of the figures who were active in the area at the time. A presentation on the motorcycle pioneers of Sacramento and a book signing by Edwards is set for Saturday, July 17, from 2–4 p.m. at the California Automobile Museum. The book can be purchased at most online retailers. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Submissions are due six weeks prior to the publication month. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n

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Survival Mode Photo by Aniko Kiezel

POCKET COMES THROUGH STRONGER THAN EVER

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eople in Pocket and Greenhaven who have worked from home the past 16 months might believe their neighborhood exists in a universe removed from City Hall. It’s understandable. But I can tell you it’s not true. The city did not forget about Pocket during the pandemic. The city had bigger things to worry about. Federal and state bailouts saved the day, making it easy to forget how bad the future looked at City Hall last summer. To recap: Sales tax revenue and money from hotels, rental cars and conventions collapsed. Income from city garages and parking meters disappeared. There was no parking ticket revenue, because there were no parked cars. Social justice protests filled Downtown streets. Looting and

RG By R.E. Graswich Pocket Beat

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property destruction spilled into retail areas. Pocket and Greenhaven avoided those catastrophes. The community doesn’t cater to tourists, conventioneers or looters. There are no garages or parking meters. Protesters weren’t interested in Pocket’s placid, suburban streets, other than a few misfits who figured out where Mayor Darrell Steinberg lives and showed up at his home to yell, throw rocks and wreck garden ornaments. City authorities did manage to slightly disrupt Pocket’s bliss, but no harm was done and the imposition was soon corrected. In September, the City Council took away just over $4 million designated for the Sacramento River Parkway Bike Trail. At the time, the city claimed it was putting the money “on hold.” For people who don’t trust politicians, “on hold” might have suggested the city was breaking its promise to build the levee parkway—a promise “on hold” since 1975. For a while, I began to worry. But the city isn’t backing away from the levee bike trail. Those parkway millions put “on hold” were strategic. They helped keep the city’s books balanced until bailout money was secured.

Earlier this year, the city quietly added $4.5 million to the levee bike trail project between Garcia Bend and Zacharias Park—a stretch that for decades was blighted with illegal fences, gates and barbed wire strung by property owners near the river. In a neat summation of the $4.5 million, the city manager’s office explains, “This will provide the public with open-space access along the Sacramento River, provide a safe path for bicycling and walking, and create stronger connectivity amongst neighborhoods and communities.” “We actually got a little more money put back than was taken out in September,” says Dennis Rogers, chief of staff for Pocket City Councilmember Rick Jennings. Today, the project funds top $8 million, thanks to additional money from Sacramento Area Council of Governments. Actions such as returning $4.5 million to the levee bike trail show how Pocket and Greenhaven aren’t ignored by City Hall. This is something residents should never take for granted. If the City Council was filled with people who were shortsighted or beholden to Downtown interests, they could forget the cozy riverfront suburb to the south.

Pocket and Greenhaven were designed around 60 years ago to function as a bubble, a place apart from the city, a unique community where residents have everything they need. Other than going to work or a hospital, there’s no reason to leave. To understand the designer’s temptation to create the Pocket bubble, consult a map and remember what the planners saw: To the west was a broad river bend. To the east was a smooth new freeway. Interstate 5 stopped at Pocket until 1979, when the Stockton gap was finished. In those days, Pocket was the end of the road. A better bubble could not be imagined. The past 16 months tested the bubble in ways planners didn’t anticipate. Families lost loved ones. Businesses suffered. But the community’s future is bright, especially with $8 million for what City Hall calls “the most defining natural resource in the region.” R.E. Graswich can be reached at regraswich@icloud.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


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Staying Power WEAVE LEADER

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quarter of a century. Makes a girl think.” –Marilyn Monroe as Sugar in “Some Like It Hot.” Beth Hassett has been thinking a lot lately. The chief executive of WEAVE is celebrating her 25th year at the nonprofit that provides crisis intervention for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking in Sacramento County. The milestone has Hassett looking back to where she started. And she’s looking ahead with the organization she’s served since 1995. “Twenty-five years ago… I walked through the doors of WEAVE as the special events coordinator and the agency’s 278th employee,” Hassett writes in an email to the community. “I know now, I was—and remain—drawn to a complex combination of wanting to support that individual survivor; the urge to lead a team of compassionate, caring staff and volunteers to realize our agency’s mission; and a drive to make the world a more equitable and safe place for all people.”

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Beth Hassett Photo by Linda Smolek


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NARI of Sacramento’s most award-winning remodeling company! Hassett didn’t intend to spend her career in the nonprofit universe. She studied finance at the University of Utah. After college, Hassett and her husband decided to attend graduate school for theater. Hassett’s parents were in show business and she grew up performing. She planned to combine her interests and raise money for the arts. Instead, she ended up getting “a taste of working with the media” as publicity director for the school theater department. The experience changed her trajectory. “Part of my challenge with the finance field is the juxtaposition between how to ethically raise money to operate a business while looking at it through the lens of (philosophers) like Kant and Mill of using people to get ahead,” Hassett says. “I was very drawn to the idea of working for an organization that worked with very difficult issues, but also the inequity of gender and race.” While working fulltime in fundraising for WEAVE, Hassett volunteered for its crisis line and as a sexual assault responder. She sat with survivors as they underwent medical tests at UC Davis Medical Center. Coupled with the death of her mother, the experience was too much. Hassett left and served in senior management positions with Capital Public Radio and the Mercy Foundation before WEAVE beckoned her back—this time as executive director. Over the last 15 years, Hassett’s job morphed from executive director to CEO as the organization grew in size and complexity. She oversees a $10 million budget and hundreds of staff, including advocates, counselors and educators, and volunteers. The pandemic only complicated matters, forcing the organization to pivot in unforeseen ways.

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“When the shelter-in-place orders first hit, we saw a decline in people reaching out because they weren’t comfortable leaving and the shelters had stopped taking new people,” Hassett says. “By July, the calls to our legal line had doubled as people looked for legal solutions (such as restraining orders) to stay safe.” In March, WEAVE launched an online chat function so people wouldn’t have to talk on the phone, which Hassett calls a “lifesaver.” They also introduced the telemedicine platform Doxy, which allows WEAVE to serve counseling clients remotely—a practice that will likely continue after the pandemic. This year, Hassett wants to reframe what WEAVE means. She and others felt the original acronym, Women Escaping a Violent Environment, was too gendered for an organization that also serves men and nonbinary people. When a young boy came up with a new basis for the abbreviation—When Everyone Acts, Violence Ends—it sounded like a perfect fit. “In 2021, we’re focusing on what people can do to help end violence,” Hassett says. “Educating yourself about what leads to violent acts, intervening when you see somebody behaving badly, donating clothes to our thrift stores, donating money. I like the positivity of (the new name). It shows that we all have a role—even if we don’t think we’ve been touched by it, we have.” For more information, visit weaveinc. org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

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Battle Lines COUNTY BOARD WILL DRAW ITS OWN DISTRICTS

SHERIFF’S ACCOUNTABILITY County supervisors recently created a community review commission to work with the County Inspector General to improve accountability and transparency at the Sheriff’s Department. Inspector General Mark Evenson said he liked the commission idea and saw it providing a “supportive role” to his office. But he was concerned panel members might use subpoenas to play a more active role. He said some “vetting” was needed on the panel’s subpoena power. In response, the board agreed to issue rules for the commission, including how subpoena power is administered. Evenson and two supervisors will finalize the rules and regulations for presentation to the 11-member volunteer commission. The group will undergo orientation on law enforcement policies and procedures.

MENTAL HEALTH EMERGENCIES

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edistricting season has arrived. Every 10 years based on census results, political lines are changed to ensure equal voter representation. How the lines are drawn can be controversial, especially when gerrymandering is involved. The process may allow politicians to choose their voters, rather than the other way around. In Sacramento County, the Board of Supervisors will determine its own districts, with public input. The Sacramento City Council is going through a similar exercise but has

HS By Howard Schmidt Inside The County

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appointed a public commission to draw the lines. The county process is explained at the website saccounty.net/redistricting. Workshops will be scheduled in July across the county to encourage residents to share their thoughts and suggestions. Check the website for updates. Official census data are expected in September, with the process finalized by Dec. 15 to accommodate 2022 elections. Three supervisorial seats are on the ballot next year. Phil Serna (District 1) and Patrick Kennedy (District 2) will run to keep their jobs. District 5 Supervisor Don Nottoli will retire after 28 years on the board, so south county voters will elect a new representative. New district boundaries could influence those elections. Sacramento County will provide a web-based mapping tool for voters and community groups once the census figures are available. The tool will allow the public to draw and submit suggested boundaries for each county supervisor. Politicians have checkered histories when it comes to drawing their own

boundaries. The late Congressmember Phil Burton (D-San Francisco) once concocted a district so bizarrely shaped he referred to it as “my contribution to modern art.” His design included Burton’s ideal constituencies, broken into four sections, two of which were connected by water and two by railroad yards. Not surprisingly, redistricting can become intense political theater. District changes can either help or hurt election prospects. Federal and state laws exist to limit the shenanigans, but they don’t always work. The rules require districts to be substantially equal in population, “communities of interest” treated fairly (socio-economic geographic areas kept together), cities and neighborhoods not divided, and boundaries made easily identifiable with freeways, rivers and major roads. A representative from the League of Women Voters will monitor the county for compliance to the California Fair Maps Act.

In September, the board will decide whether law enforcement should continue to respond to persons experiencing mental health emergencies via 911 or turn the function over to social workers through a stand-alone call system. Rancho Cordova Police are operating a new Mobile Crisis Support Team to respond to mental health emergencies. The team consists of a police officer trained in crisis intervention and a licensed mental health clinician. A peer navigator follows up to ensure clients are offered support in accessing care systems. There are six additional Mobile Crisis Support Teams in Sacramento County. Each team responds to an average of 50 to 80 calls a month. While these teams combine law enforcement and behavioral health experience, some advocates want the Board of Supervisors to end law enforcement involvement by ditching the 911 routing system for a stand-alone call center dedicated to mental health emergencies. Howard Schmidt has worked on the federal, state and local levels of government, including 16 years for Sacramento County. He can be reached at howardschmidt218@aol.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n


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Creative Conversions

HOMEOWNERS TURN GARAGES INTO ARTISTIC ESCAPES

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hen Jim Darke first moved into his house in South Land Park in 2019, he knew immediately he would convert the garage into an art studio. The painter and cartographer downsized from his former home in Little Pocket, but knew he still wanted a space where he could spread out his art materials. Though he has a studio at Arthouse on R, he does most of his work in his reimagined garage. “The garage had the right framework to be a studio, so I hired my ex-son-in-law to do the conversion,” says Darke, whose ethereal paintings on canvas explore the connection between sky and land—a perspective gained while working as a naval aviator and glider pilot. “He’s a talented craftsman, so he not only did the electrical work, he also insulated the very high ceiling, put in new LED lighting that approaches natural sunlight and installed a mini HVAC unit, so it can be 105 degrees outside, but it’s still only 75 in my studio.” The pièce de résistance of Darke’s project was replacing the standard garage door with one made of frosted glass, which allows for a “big bank of soft, diffused light” that is perfect for painting but

JL By Jessica Laskey OPEN HOUSE

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Jim Darke Photos by Aniko Kiezel


The Benefits of Mangos For Skin By Vivien Fam, RD PhD; Raja Sivamani, MD MS AP Mangos are tropical fruits that are sold in many different varieties in our local stores. While mangos are certainly delicious to eat, they are full of nutrients that may be good for our health and our skin. This sweet and savory fruit is known to contain high amounts of vitamin C and carotenoids, along with other vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Some variety of mangos such as the Ataulfo variety, contains a more robust nutrient profile than others. Vitamins and minerals are important for skin health, with a research showing that women with significantly

lower intakes of vitamin A and C had more wrinkles. Our skin typically contains high levels of vitamin C, which is important for collagen formation and to protect the skin against damage. On top of that, carotenoids, which are naturally occurring pigments that gives

mango its yellow color, has the capability to efficiently protect the skin against the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. With its high nutrient profile coupled with a flavor favored by many, it comes as no surprise that mango is a fruit of research interest. We are currently recruiting for a study at Zen Dermatology to investigate the effects of fresh-frozen Ataulfo mango intake on facial skin and gut health! Mango Study on Wrinkles and Gut Health Isoflavone Study on Wrinkles and Gut Health

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Photos by Megan Goetz

A GLASS GARAGE DOOR IS ALSO THE STUNNING FOCAL POINT OF MARK AND CAREN RODDY’S RECENT GARAGE CONVERSION.

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Mark and Caren Roddy with their children Eryn and Garrott. Photo by Megan Goetz

maintains privacy, since the garage faces the street. He plans to open the door completely when he hosts visitors as part of the Verge Center for the Art’s Sac Open Studios in the fall. A glass garage door is also the stunning focal point of Mark and Caren Roddy’s recent garage conversion. When the couple first settled in East Sac three years ago (by way of Phoenix and Oakland), they knew they wanted to make the garage a functional separate space. But it wasn’t until the pandemic hit that they finally made it happen. “We decided to inhabit the garage as soon as we moved in, but when COVID happened and we were going to be spending time out there a lot as a family, we started thinking about how to really make it comfortable,” Mark says. Both he and Caren are architects and faculty members in Sac State’s Interior Architecture department, so they designed the conversion themselves.

They hired a contractor to install insulated windows, French doors that open onto their yard, new lighting and, of course, a fully functional glass garage door. “We wanted an inside-outside space because the weather is so nice, but we didn’t want to enclose it,” Mark says. “We can benefit from the light and still stay connected to the neighborhood even when the garage door is closed.” Three-quarters of the space have been transformed into a “hang out” room designed by Caren, with eclectic furnishings—including a birdcage seat suspended from the ceiling. There’s plenty of room for drawing, dollhouse making and game playing with the Roddy’s two children, 11-year-old daughter Eryn and 14-year-old son Garrott. The remaining quarter of the space boasts much-needed storage (designed by Caren) for the family’s tools, camping gear and bicycles.

“We don’t all have to be minimalists—there’s no shame in having things you actually need and use,” says Caren, who runs a professional practice helping people organize, design and stage their interior spaces. “It’s all about helping you figure out what you need to live.” Mark adds, “People often complain that they can’t do anything in their garages because there’s too much stuff in the way. But if they just organized it

in a different and clever way, they could benefit from a great, usable space that’s so often underutilized.” For more information, visit jimdarke. com, markroddyarchitect.com and carenroddy.com. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

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Photo by Aniko Kiezel

No Way L.A. DOWNTOWN CAN’T FOLLOW PATH TO SKID ROW

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fter a decade of looking for encouraging news about Sacramento’s homeless crisis, I’ve found some: Compared to downtown Los Angeles, Sacramento has no homeless crisis.

RG By R.E. Graswich City Beat

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I visit downtown L.A. every couple of months and have watched its vibrancy sink into an abyss of misery, poverty, crime and wasted lives. Tents, doorway sleepers and garbage are everywhere. Recovery will take years. If L.A.’s anguish makes Sacramento look hopeful, it also carries a warning. As Mayor Darrell Steinberg says, “Los Angeles is a cautionary tale.” Before the pandemic, about 4,600 homeless people lived in L.A.’s dystopian wasteland east of Main Street between Third and Seventh streets. The slum covers 50 blocks

and almost 3 square miles. Welcome to Skid Row. For 50 years, Skid Row was a containment zone. Flop houses, rescue missions and soup kitchens served derelicts, felons, lunatics and drug addicts. Tourists and office workers steered clear. Police considered it a cesspool of violence and vice. An invisible wall surrounded Skid Row. The pandemic breeched the wall and shattered it. As offices closed for COVID and social-justice protests disintegrated into looting, parts of downtown L.A. near Skid Row—thriving

neighborhoods—were obliterated. Restaurants, bars, hotels, bakeries, sandwich shops, clothing stores, gyms, record shops, florists, nail salons, coffee roasters, hairdressers and art galleries boarded up and left. At least 145 downtown L.A. businesses closed. Now their sidewalks are filled with tents and people in cardboard boxes. The historic Skid Row boundaries of Main Street and Third Street are gone. Homeless camps blossom on all corners. By comparison, Sacramento’s homeless crisis is fragmented and small. The city’s Skid Row flows away from Downtown toward North 12th Street and the River District. Dingy single-room occupancy hotels that served transients and ex-cons are reborn as low-income housing. Sanctioned campsites feature toilets and showers. Sacramento follows a new strategy, designed by Steinberg to thin out homelessness, spread the problem around and make it less obvious. Under Steinberg’s plan, each council district—there are eight—will support some type of services for unsheltered people. The Great Homeless Dispersal is underway. It’s the mayor’s most clever move in a crisis that has defined his two terms. The dispersal comes weeks after a federal judge in L.A. ordered authorities to find shelter for Skid Row’s entire population. Judge David Carter sided with downtown L.A. business owners and residents who said officials abdicated their duty to clean up the mess. The judge wants L.A. to stop wasting tax dollars on


homeless remedies that don’t work and lack accountability, such as Housing First. L.A. authorities have appealed Carter’s order, but Steinberg is paying attention. “It’s a drastic order,” he says. “In Sacramento, we have the opportunity to accomplish the same goal contained within the judge’s order without the intervention of the court. We have an opportunity to do it better and differently.” That means disperse homeless people into temporary housing and shelters. Before the pandemic, downtown L.A. boomed. More than $35 billion was invested since 1999. Skyscrapers, music halls and museums rose on Bunker Hill. Old factories and warehouses became expensive lofts. Downtown L.A.’s population reached 85,000. The L.A. Live entertainment district and Staples Center were inspirations for DoCo and Golden 1 Center. But Carter’s intervention shows why Sacramento can’t afford to copy L.A.’s acceptance of tents in parks and street corners.

Two factors will determine how Downtown Sacramento recovers from the pandemic. First, government workers must return to offices. Second, tents and sidewalk sleepers must be dispersed. Many public employees won’t come back until September at the earliest. Without them, businesses will continue to struggle—a challenge made worse by people living on the street. There are already signs of economic resurgence in Downtown. Michael Ault of the Downtown Sacramento Partnership says 27 businesses have opened since April 2020. They offset the loss of about 40 shops that closed. The newcomers are diverse, from coffee shops to salons. Many are located in Old Sacramento, the city’s former Skid Row. What those new businesses need are lots of customers and zero tents.

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Fighting for a Cure Sophia and Ryan Phillips with their son Crosby Photo by Aniko Kiezel

JL By Jessica Laskey Meet Your Neighbor

ROSEVILLE PARENTS GO ALL-IN TO HELP SON WITH RARE GENETIC MUTATION

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verything was fine—until it wasn’t. Sophia and Ryan Phillips got pregnant quickly. Every prenatal scan checked out great. Delivery was smooth and they brought newborn son Crosby home in November 2019. The first thing they noticed was how much he cried. “He cried for days and days—he was inconsolable,” Sophia says. “You always hear from new parents how exhausted they are, but this was at a different level. We just figured we had the most challenging baby ever.” At their four-month wellness visit, the new parents expressed concern that Crosby still had crossed eyes. This is not unusual for newborns, but it typically resolves in the first few months. Also, he was not meeting typical milestones such as rolling over, making eye contact or laughing. They visited an eye doctor who suggested a neurological exam to rule out more serious causes for Crosby’s crossed eyes. An MRI and a slew of genetic testing revealed an underdeveloped brain and a rare mutation in Crosby’s FOXG1 gene—the first and most fundamental

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gene formed during human development responsible for early brain development. It’s known as FOXG1 Syndrome. And the Phillips’ lives changed forever. “Upon receiving the diagnosis, the geneticist gave us an analogy,” Ryan says. “Genes are like the letters, sentences and chapters in a book. You can have genetic abnormalities that remove whole chapters, or just one sentence, or just one letter. Crosby’s missing just one letter, so we were hopeful it wouldn’t be all that impairing. But then we looked up FOXG1 Syndrome online and saw other children suffering from it and we were devastated—it was significantly worse than what we’d imagined.” FOXG1 dysfunction has been linked to conditions including autism, Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, epilepsy and cerebral palsy. “Ryan and I have been through a lot together, but I finally understood why people commit suicide,” Sophia says. “Why would I want to live—why would I want my child to live—if he’s going to have to go through this?” After wading through the initial shock and grief over the loss of their imagined future, the Phillips got to work.

“We went from grieving to the rebirth of our reality and an acceptance of that reality,” Ryan says. “A large part of that was identifying what occurred, what the gene’s role and responsibility is and identifying ways we could potentially intervene and improve Crosby’s quality of life.” The Phillips dove into the science, joined groups of fellow parents with children suffering from FOXG1 Syndrome and prepared for the fight of their lives. They sent samples of Crosby’s skin cells to an international repository that researchers draw from to study rare diseases in children. They looked for advocacy groups to join to help raise money for research. They found the FOXG1 Research Foundation, a global organization that connects a scientific advisory board of neurologists, geneticists, clinicians, scientists and biopharmacy executives to families hoping to find a cure. With his background in finance, Ryan now serves as the organization’s CFO. He and Sophia are determined to share Crosby’s journey to help raise research

money for the foundation through a GoFundMe page. They give hope to other families adjusting to their new reality. Crosby’s cells are now being studied in labs at several institutions, including UC San Diego, University of Buffalo in New York, King’s College in England and Center for Gene Therapy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio. “Our goal is to make sure that there are therapeutics being developed that work for Crosby’s specific mutation,” Ryan says. “We’re doing this to help Crosby and impact anyone suffering from FOXG1. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and we don’t want anyone else to have to go through it—but if they have to, we want people to know there’s relief at the end of the road.” For more information, visit gofundme. com/f/crosbyscure or foxg1research.org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


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Kitten Crusaders NEW PROGRAM OFFERS BEST OPTIONS FOR STRAY NEWBORNS

Kitten Connection volunteers hit Sacramento streets, backyards and alleyways to help stray kittens.

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oft mews came from the church ceiling. Staff could hear the kittens crying, but could not access the fragile felines. Kitten Connection to the rescue. “I could see the kittens in an AC duct,” says Stephanie McCall, a Kitten Connection volunteer. She grabbed a cardboard box, climbed a ladder and opened the air conditioning grate. “They all fell right into the box. I felt like Wonder Woman.” Four 6-week-old females—three calicos and a black and white—were trapped without mom, food or water for almost a week following repairs at the church in Del Paso Heights.

CR By Cathryn Rakich Animals & Their Allies

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An emergency exam by a local veterinarian found them underweight but healthy. “They went into foster care and they’re doing great,” McCall says. Kitten Connection is a communitybased volunteer program run by the city’s Front Street Animal Shelter. A team of approximately 12 trained volunteers are on-call 24 hours a day, hitting the streets, backyards and alleyways to respond to requests from the community to help stray kittens. But Kitten Connection is not just about dispatching volunteers to pick up homeless felines. The program is tailored to assess situations and find best options, even if that means leaving the youngsters where they are. Historically, animal control officers were dispatched to these calls. But with officers receiving 16,000 animalrelated service requests a year, there is little time to evaluate each circumstance and create a plan for an optimum outcome.

“Inevitably, the officers would pick up the kittens, take them to the shelter and head off to the next call,” says Jace Huggins, Front’s Street chief of field services, who created Kitten Connection. “I wanted to find a way to add an educational component to our responses. We focus on when it’s appropriate to bring kittens in and when it’s appropriate to leave them in the field.” McCall has been volunteering at Front Street for seven years and has fostered more than 800 kittens. She and the other Kitten Connection volunteers have the knowledge and experience to make the program a success, which includes educating the public. “People would see a litter of kittens and make an assumption that mom must not be coming around—and just take them to the shelter,” Huggins says. “But the shelter is not the best place for a newborn kitten. We can’t provide it with the same nutrients that mom can, the same temperature

controls. Mama cat is the absolute best provider for that care.” In addition, foster caregivers trained to care for “bottle babies” are scarce. “So let’s work triply hard to make sure mom isn’t coming around before we go in and swoop up kittens,” Huggins adds. Kitten Connection volunteers scatter flour over the ground and return in a couple hours to look for mom’s pawprints. They scan for hiding places. They determine if the kittens are healthy. “You can tell a lot if the mama cat is coming around just by looking at the kittens,” Huggins says. “The volunteers’ specialty is figuring out when a kitten really needs to go and when it can stay where it’s at.” When the kittens are 5 to 6 weeks old and eating on their own, Kitten Connection volunteers are called back to retrieve the youngsters and mom (which may entail setting humane traps). The kittens are spayed or neutered and put up for adoption. After her spay, mom is typically


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Timothy Scott (Tim) has created a concept FOR that’s new and quite appealing. It will be a bit different than what you’re used to, but within a few minutes, you’ll settle right in. The typical, cold, minimalist salon look is gone! He uses rich textiles and real furnishings, combined with the perfect genre of music to create a luxurious, warm, modern interior that is a direct extension of his creativity and attention to detail. This is a private place for men as well as for women. There are no other stylists or clients. It’s just you and Tim in a comfortable, spacious environment where you can ask questions and talk freely about whatever you want without anyone else listening to your conversation or having to listen to theirs. He is open and engaging, hilarious to talk to, and without pretense, is genuinely interested in you as a person. Tim doesn’t run his salon as an assembly line. He loves what he does. So much so, that from the first shampoo to the blowout, he does all the work himself. You won’t get tossed off to an assistant or to another stylist that’s trying to gain experience. His

returned to her home base. “If she is friendly, there is a possibility that she has a home to go back to,” Huggins says. “The key is to get them altered so they are not having more litters.” Sick, injured and “bottle babies” with no sign of mom are picked up immediately. “We also create foster families right there in the field,” Huggins explains. “People who are glad to keep the kittens and take care of them until they are old enough to be spayed or neutered.” Kitten Connection volunteers come prepared with supplies, including formula, bottles, heating discs and wet kitten food, to leave with the caller. Because calls to the Front Street Animal Shelter go through Sacramento’s 311 system, Huggins developed Kitten Connection to work within the system. The program seems to be working. “Kitten Connection has allowed 311 to handle the overwhelming number of calls for kittens received daily much more quickly and efficiently,” says Suzanne Solorzano, a 311 Call Center agent. “Their assistance has greatly improved response times for

consultations are a fun, in depth discussion of what you want to achieve addressing all concerns and possibilities he sees. Tim can make men handsome and women gorgeous. He will never claim to be perfect, but what a person will experience from him today, is a culmination of 34 impressive years of his triumphs and, more importantly, his failures. His precision haircuts, ingenious formulations of his hair color line, and genuine Kerastase products will make your hair sublime, enabling you to feel more confident in your professional life as well as in your

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priority calls, freeing animal control officers to handle other emergency calls throughout the city.” Kitten Connection, which operates within the city limits, has been up and running since the beginning of the year. Now, with “kitten season” in full swing, the program is more critical than ever. “It’s not a perfect system,” Huggins says. “We are not going to be able to get them all. This isn’t a short sprint. It’s a marathon. We are doing the best we can. But we’re doing more than we were before, which is the most important thing.” To volunteer for Kitten Connection, sign up for Front Street’s online volunteer orientation at cityofsacramento.org/communitydevelopment/animal-care. For more information, contact Huggins at jhuggins@cityofsacramento.org.

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Nursery Mona Bahraini Photo by Linda Smolek

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SUCCULENT GARDEN HELPS THOSE WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

art of the magic of The Prickly Pear is finding this hidden treasure as you stroll down U Street in Southside Park. Follow a path into the backyard of a historic two-story home, weaving through arches of wisteria and fairy lights.

ZS By Zack Sherzad Meet Your Neighbor

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The manicured succulent garden opens up like a scene from a semi-arid fairy tale. Amethyst geodes and signs pointing toward Narnia, Westeros and Hogwarts keep company with a pair of pygmy goats nibbling mischievously on the leaves of an overhanging pineappleguava. Underneath a broad awning of corrugated plastic, a who’s who of popular succulents dominates the space. The Prickly Pear owner Mona Bahraini was working as a dental hygienist in 2017. A self-described succulent nerd, she spent her free time driving for hours to buy plants out of people's backyards. “My husband and I were in the cutest little 500-square-

foot apartment in Midtown, and I had 300—literally over 300—succulents and cactuses in that tiny apartment,” she says. “I was such a hardcore collector because they’re the most beautiful plants. They’re sustainable, they’re healing, they’re prehistoric.” Later that year, Bahraini was involved in an accident that left her on disability. She was told to take a year off for surgery and recovery. “I decided to build a do-it-yourself little tiny greenhouse.” She purchased a carport from Home Depot, called it her shop and opened it to the public on Sundays. Bahraini considered holding events similar to paint-and-sips. But instead

of painting, guests would pot their own succulents to take home. “Personally, I don’t like paint-and-sips,” she says. “I’m not a good painter. It’s hard! But pot-and-sip? It’s not hard to put a plant in a pot!” She started booking birthdays, bachelorette parties and other events. The business grew quickly. Still, she felt it was not quite where she wanted it to be. “My goal was eventually to have a space where I could do therapeutic activities for adults with disabilities.” In 2018, the woman who owned The Prickly Pear’s current U Street residence was looking to sell. “She’d lived here for 25 years, loved the property, and wanted to sell it with purpose, with intention,” Bahraini says. “She sent a friend to my Sunday public hours to vet me. She watched me interact with my customers, and then came up to me and said, ‘My friend wants you to buy her house.’” Bahraini and her husband moved into the century-plus-old home. The property includes a barn that was used as a wood shop. In keeping with her policy of sustainability and intentionality, the space is decorated with interesting tools and reclaimed materials found during the remodel. The tables in the main event room are made from the house’s original doors and beautifully mottled with the character of age. Keeping with her goal of giving back to the community, Bahraini created a community garden geared toward adults with disabilities. Pre-COVID, “every two weeks they would come plant some vegetables and herbs, and every few months we would sell the produce on Sunday public hours,” she says. “With COVID, we had to stop. But when it picks back up, we’re going to do that same thing again.” Bahraini also is offering those pot-and-sip events now where guests drink locally sourced wine as they pot a succulent and enjoy either small bites, juice tasting or a full dining experience. Everything in The Prickly Pear speaks to Bahraini’s passion for intentional, sustainable and local living.


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She has clay succulent pots made by Sacramento artists, local wine and kombucha on tap in the event room, all-natural skin-care products, and soon (she hopes!) a line of biodegradable bamboo clothing. “From the very beginning I’ve called it ‘A Nursery With Purpose.’ I want to sell plants, but relate it back to where they come from. The Earth provides so much beauty for us. It’s therapeutic, it’s helpful for all people,” Bahraini says. “My ultimate goal is to create a culture through Prickly Pear that is embraced nationwide. I want to be an example of what a small business can do

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if you focus on your talents and pursue them in the right way. It will get you where you want to be, and who you should be helping.” The Prickly Pear is located at 816 U St. and open to the public 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. For more information or to shop online, visit thepricklypear. com. Zack Sherzad can be reached at zacksherzad@gmail.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

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Part of the

Billie Hamilton Photo by Linda Smolek

JL By Jessica Laskey Giving Back: Volunteer Profile

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B

illie Hamilton was born to be part of the action. The River Park resident has spent her life educating people and fighting for causes. At 93, she’s going strong. “I’ve always been an activist,” Hamilton says.

Action RIVER PARK ACTIVIST STILL FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT

Her history proves the point. She’s a member of the Sacramento chapter of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby and has been involved with the Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, American Friends Service Committee and National Organization for Women. When Hamilton wasn’t marching or getting friends involved in various causes, she taught elementary school for more than 40 years in New York, Indiana, Michigan and California. The avid musician has directed choirs and taught the recorder to kids and adults. She sees teaching and activism as intertwined interests. “Looking at what I’ve done all my life, everything seems to point to educating others,” she says. When she came to California, Hamilton taught at a private Quaker school near Grass Valley and became deeply involved in the Quaker faith community with Sacramento Friends Meeting. At the time, she was keenly interested in going to Washington to lobby congressional representatives to reduce Pentagon spending and address issues affecting the poor. Eight years ago, she realized her dream with the Citizens’ Climate Lobby, a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots advocacy organization focused on national policies to address climate change solutions. The Sacramento chapter is one of 587 around the world. “One of my friends was involved with CCL and invited me to come to a meeting,” Hamilton says. “I met Jennifer Wood (Sacramento chapter leader at the time) and she said they needed somebody to go to Washington, D.C., to lobby. I knew nothing about the group, but I thought this is my opportunity to go to Washington, so

I took the challenge. I found it really exciting.” Hamilton has traveled to Washington with CCL four times to lobby for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 2307). She has served on the group’s advisory board as treasurer and liaison to Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento). Prior to the pandemic, she attended CCL conferences that left her with “a wonderful feeling of hope and love and care and kindness” thanks to the nonprofit’s culture of respect, which fits with her Quaker beliefs. The acronym for the Quaker Testimonies “is SPICES—simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality and stewardship,” Hamilton says. “I can apply all those things to CCL. They respect, they don’t bully, they care about people and the relationship of building political will.” Post-pandemic, Hamilton is looking forward to resuming her full schedule of CCL conferences, singing in the choir at Sacred Heart, performing and teaching recorder with groups that include the Sacramento Recorder Society (which she founded in 1987) and singing protest songs at marches as part of the international social justice activist organization Raging Grannies. “I never got depressed during the pandemic because I’m so involved in my interests,” Hamilton says. “Doing something all the time makes me hopeful.” For more information, visit sacramentoccl.org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


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6306 COYLE AVE 6524 MILES LN 6208 WILDOMAR WAY 3645 HOLLISTER AVE 4812 KENNETH AVE 4024 EASTWOOD VILLAGE LN 6555 MADISON AVE 5528 WHITNEY AVE 2717 GUNN RD 6141 ORSI CIR 6119 HILLTOP DR 2445 FALLWATER LN 5616 SAPUNOR WAY 3130 COLORADO ST 4032 EASTWOOD VILLAGE LN 4027 EASTWOOD VILLAGE LN 4028 EASTWOOD VILLAGE LN 3625 VOLEYN ST 6000 AMIR LN 4537 WINDING TREE LN 5036 KINROSS RD 5720 NORTH AVE 3916 HOLLISTER AVE 5716 MISTY WIND CT 5330 KIRKLAND WAY 5708 MISTY WIND CT 5712 MISTY WIND CT 8428 FAIR OAKS BL 3901 HENDERSON WAY 5540 HESPER WAY 4813 SERENA CT 3625 WAYNART CT 4306 GLENRIDGE DR 3833 BALLARD DR 6212 WILDOMAR WAY 3640 TIMMCO CT 3013 GARFIELD AVE 5115 CYPRESS AVE 4024 MASON LN 6518 SUTTER AVE 5091 TONYA WAY 5348 HALSTED AVE 3120 OZZIE CT 5219 GRANT AVE 5340 ADELAIDE WAY 4726 PAXTON CT 2414 WALNUT OAKS LN 4207 PUEBLO ST 4719 NELROY WAY 5141 CYPRESS AVE 3606 KEARNEY WAY 4700 NORTH AVE 4251 GOLD FLOWER CT 4961 FRANCIS WAY 7225 WILLOWBANK WAY 2749 GUNN RD 5109 LOCUST AVE 6422 LINCOLN AVE 2730 CALISA CT 3627 AZELL RD 4809 FAIR OAKS BL 3706 GARDEN CT 1411 MCCLAREN DR 3740 DELL RD 4900 CLEAR CIR 1453 THISTLEWOOD WAY 1749 CARMELO DR 5901 RIVER GLEN CT 6904 LANDIS AVE 5269 MARIONE DR 1230 MCCLAREN DR 3440 MARSHALL AVE 3000 PARKWOOD CT 3001 MARLYNN ST 1822 SUFFOLK WAY 4943 SUDBURY WAY

$335,000 $360,000 $370,000 $377,000 $377,000 $384,000 $385,000 $400,000 $400,000 $400,000 $405,000 $415,000 $420,000 $420,000 $435,000 $440,000 $440,000 $445,000 $455,000 $468,500 $470,000 $470,000 $475,000 $475,000 $475,000 $479,000 $479,000 $490,000 $493,900 $500,000 $500,000 $505,000 $508,500 $510,000 $515,000 $519,000 $520,000 $525,000 $530,000 $530,000 $530,000 $530,000 $533,000 $550,000 $555,000 $560,000 $594,950 $600,000 $608,000 $610,000 $610,000 $610,000 $620,000 $627,000 $635,000 $650,000 $660,000 $680,000 $685,000 $719,000 $755,000 $775,000 $812,000 $814,000 $815,000 $825,000 $845,000 $860,000 $891,000 $950,000 $980,000 $1,000,000 $1,190,000 $1,200,000 $1,200,000 $1,425,000

4934 PALOMA AVE 4994 KEANE DR 1620 GARY WAY

95815

3090 BELDEN ST 3267 OFARRELL DR 601 LEE DR 145 BAY DR 450 ELEANOR AVE 467 ELEANOR AVE 1928 BOWLING GREEN DR 2916 DEL PASO BL 2157 SURREY RD 2002 OXFORD ST

95816

3158 SERRA WAY 1818 - 22ND ST #106 2503 RICE ALLEY 821 - 24TH ST 2517 I ST 3241 L ST 330 - 24TH ST 3131 SERRA WAY 2601 D ST 1750 SANTA YNEZ WAY 431 - 35TH ST 1241 - 33RD ST 536 - 38TH ST 330 - 36TH WAY 584 SANTA YNEZ WAY

95817

3754 - 5TH AVE 2949 - 43RD ST 2022 - 53RD ST 3909 BOYLE CT 3004 PORTOLA WAY 3444 - 1ST AVE 3973 MILLER WAY 5008 U ST 3201 Y ST 4867 V ST

95818

437 LUG LN #73A 448 TAILOFF LN #78A 236 BOX LN 421 U ST 450 TAILOFF LN #78B 451 TAILOFF LN #201 438 TAILOFF LN #79 1015 BROADWAY 948 VALLEJO WAY 2221 W ST 3644 - 24TH ST 2656 HARKNESS ST 2349 MCFLY WALK 2649 - 13TH ST 2121 PERKINS WAY 1817 - 5TH AVE 2500 - 6TH AVE 3353 - 11TH ST 1012 YALE ST 1905 - 7TH AVE 2525 - 8TH AVE 2719 - 14TH ST 2009 VIZCAYA WALK 1207 MARIAN WAY 3233 CROCKER DR 2939 - 27TH ST 1615 - 13TH AVE 2020 - 8TH AVE

95819

1840 - 44TH ST 5264 MINERVA AVE 5240 MINERVA AVE 648 SAN ANTONIO WAY

$1,430,000 $1,475,000 $2,100,000 $311,500 $325,000 $325,000 $327,000 $330,000 $355,000 $371,000 $380,000 $459,000 $680,000 $460,000 $474,950 $560,000 $615,000 $630,000 $635,000 $670,000 $735,000 $780,000 $800,000 $825,000 $896,800 $920,000 $1,200,000 $1,200,000 $410,000 $425,000 $440,000 $440,000 $550,000 $555,000 $580,000 $697,000 $700,000 $807,000 $303,000 $305,000 $365,000 $400,000 $415,000 $445,000 $479,000 $559,000 $568,000 $600,000 $605,000 $610,000 $636,860 $650,000 $661,000 $740,500 $744,500 $798,745 $801,005 $845,000 $850,000 $880,000 $899,000 $1,025,000 $1,125,000 $1,200,000 $1,350,000 $1,450,000 $445,000 $505,000 $550,000 $552,500

1865 - 41ST ST 1849 - 41ST ST 1301 LOUIS WAY 5015 TEICHERT AVE 4452 B ST 5317 CALLISTER AVE 1560 - 48TH ST 801 - 53RD ST 5140 T ST 504 MEISTER WAY 311 - 40TH ST 1917 - 40TH ST 632 - 40TH ST 4600 BREUNER AVE 5751 MODDISON AVE 440 SANDBURG DR 4464 H ST 5326 SANDBURG DR 5305 SANDBURG DR 5281 K ST 5341 T ST 5190 BRAND WAY 4617 P ST 151 LAGOMARSINO WAY 1224 - 47TH ST 5146 E ST 4416 E ST 1038 - 55TH ST 1038 - 42ND ST 1438 - 41ST ST 5281 F ST 1513 - 40TH ST 509 - 53RD ST 912 - 44TH ST 925 - 45TH ST 1431 - 46TH ST 1136 - 46TH ST

95821

2137 MEADOWLARK LN 3928 AUBURN BL 2119 WHIPPOORWILL LN 3611 WHITNEY AVE 2636 BALL WAY 3712 GRATIA AVE 2125 RASSY WAY 3630 BECERRA WAY 4620 WYMAN DR 4518 BARON AVE 2733 LERWICK RD 4360 ZEPHYR WAY 2820 LA PAZ WAY 3236 LIBBY WAY 2396 TYROLEAN WAY 3600 RIDGEWOOD WAY 4608 ENGLE RD 3617 EASTERN AVE 3430 SAINT MATHEWS DR 2970 YELLOWSTONE LN 3924 GREEN FOREST LN 3400 HARMONY LN 3317 HUNNICUTT LN 3342 LYNNE WAY 4019 GLENOLIVE CT 3220 GREENWOOD AVE 2605 CATALINA DR 4408 WYMAN DR 4040 LOGSTON CT 3209 DELWOOD WAY 2811 STAFFORD WAY 3931 IRELAND ST 3248 LIBBY WAY 4312 RAVENWOOD AVE 4304 HAZELWOOD AVE 3833 HILLCREST LN 2720 CREEKSIDE LN

$585,000 $595,000 $601,000 $605,500 $630,000 $645,000 $660,000 $665,000 $670,000 $675,000 $695,000 $700,000 $705,000 $705,000 $751,000 $752,500 $775,000 $780,000 $780,000 $795,000 $813,000 $852,000 $860,000 $869,359 $890,000 $919,225 $980,000 $982,000 $1,025,000 $1,040,000 $1,092,900 $1,200,000 $1,263,800 $1,300,000 $1,525,000 $1,595,000 $2,375,000 $320,000 $330,000 $335,000 $338,000 $350,000 $370,000 $380,000 $385,000 $390,000 $400,000 $405,000 $438,000 $451,000 $455,000 $459,900 $480,000 $485,000 $486,000 $490,000 $505,000 $510,000 $530,000 $535,000 $540,000 $540,400 $550,000 $585,000 $586,000 $625,000 $635,000 $656,500 $675,000 $688,300 $693,500 $710,000 $770,000 $815,000

95822

2551 FERNDALE AVE 7555 - 29TH ST 1407 MCALLISTER AVE 2300 - 66TH AVE 1934 - 67TH AVE 2131 ARLISS WAY 1780 - 59TH AVE 6850 - 21ST ST 2632 - 52ND AVE 2138 MONIFIETH WAY 2299 - 67TH AVE 1442 - 65TH AVE 2513 ENCINAL AVE 2140 - 48TH AVE 1437 - 63RD AVE 7338 CRANSTON WAY 6513 HOGAN DR 2224 FLORIN RD 2141 BERG AVE 5636 MILNER WAY 2272 - 62ND AVE 6960 DEMARET DR 2449 FERNANDEZ DR 2517 WAH AVE 2109 - 16TH AVE 2512 47TH AVE #A 4 CASA LINDA CT 4611 ATTAWA AVE 15 MIRANDA CT 4721 CUSTIS AVE 2374 HOOKE WAY 1840 HARIAN WAY 5940 - 14TH ST 5601 CARMELA WAY 5604 SURF WAY 1156 THEO WAY 2276 MURIETA WAY 6081 HOLSTEIN WAY 1340 - 35TH AVE 4610 MARION CT 1741 SHERWOOD AVE 4819 SOUTH LAND PARK DR 1310 GRANT LN 4501 CRESTWOOD WAY

95825

3225 CASITAS BONITO 1528 HOOD RD #B 2470 NORTHROP AVE #16 2045 BOWLING GREEN DR 2037 EDWIN WAY 2248 LA PALOMA WAY 2019 ETHAN WAY 2141 VIOLET ST 2306 HIGHRIDGE DR 2528 EXETER SQUARE LN 1313 GANNON DR 1328 GANNON DR 706 HARTNELL PL 3116 PENNLAND DR 2306 MEADOWBROOK RD 1305 VANDERBILT WAY 732 COMMONS DR 216 E RANCH RD 803 DUNBARTON CIR 605 ELMHURST CIR 3121 ELLINGTON CIR 1422 COMMONS DR 930 COMMONS DR 384 HARTNELL PL 304 E RANCH RD

95831

3 PARK RIVER OAK CT 1048 JOHNFER WAY 312 RIVER ISLE WAY 7512 GREENHAVEN DR

$315,000 $320,000 $325,000 $340,000 $340,000 $340,000 $350,000 $350,000 $365,000 $370,000 $370,500 $375,000 $375,000 $375,000 $375,000 $381,000 $383,000 $385,000 $400,000 $402,000 $405,000 $407,000 $411,000 $425,000 $450,000 $455,000 $460,000 $470,000 $485,000 $495,000 $499,000 $540,000 $544,600 $565,500 $572,000 $580,000 $650,000 $675,000 $708,500 $850,000 $885,000 $891,000 $1,100,000 $1,695,000 $303,000 $305,000 $307,000 $350,000 $350,000 $357,000 $380,000 $400,000 $412,500 $419,000 $420,000 $420,000 $440,000 $442,500 $450,000 $455,555 $462,234 $465,000 $470,000 $475,000 $490,000 $500,000 $510,000 $540,000 $577,000 $395,000 $400,000 $415,000 $420,000

19 LANYARD CT 7157 ROB RIVER WAY 7289 HARBOR LIGHT WAY 7256 GLORIA DR 505 COOL WIND WAY 543 DE MAR DR 7523 ISLAND WAY 7496 SUMMERWIND WAY 8078 IDO ISLE LN 8046 LINDA ISLE LN 10 SAND CT 108 BLUE WATER CIR 7345 POCKET RD 22 SPRAY CT 6590 LONGRIDGE WAY 438 SAILWIND WAY 946 TRESTLE GLEN WAY 423 CEDAR RIVER WAY 6967 RIVERBOAT WAY 637 RIVERLAKE WAY 19 SHORELINE CIR 7708 RIVER GROVE CIR 9 DOWN RIVER CT 7 TRIUMPH CT 6360 CHETWOOD WAY 567 RIVERGATE WAY 618 RIVERGATE WAY 883 SHORE BREEZE DR 20 SAIL CT 7705 WEST SHORE DR

95864

3112 WEMBERLEY DR 1111 EVELYN LN 3333 TEMBROOK DR 3240 MAYFAIR DR 1029 AMBERWOOD RD 3368 ARDENRIDGE DR 2426 VERNA WAY 1157 GREENHILLS RD 1333 KEENEY WAY 3404 ARDENRIDGE DR 2109 IONE ST 3325 WEMBERLEY DR 3324 TEMBROOK DR 1013 AMBERWOOD RD 1838 CERES WAY 4629 MORPHEUS LN 1221 RUSHDEN DR 4608 THOR WAY 3751 EL RICON WAY 1901 EASTERN AVE 11 SABLE CT 3641 BUENA VISTA DR 730 WHITEHALL WAY 126 MOFFATT WAY 4236 GUILDFORD CT 831 SIERRA OAKS VISTA LN 4236 STOWE WAY 1130 JONAS AVE 27 ADLER CIR 4221 AMERICAN RIVER DR 1223 LA SIERRA DR 3096 LAUREL DR 1181 CASTEC DR 4615 ASHTON DR 3745 LAS PASAS WAY 585 ASHTON PARK LN 531 GROVESNOR CT 862 LA SIERRA DR 3620 SAN YSIDRO WAY 3337 AMERICAN RIVER DR 891 LOS MOLINOS WAY 4161 FAIR OAKS BL 441 HOPKINS RD 2002 FOX HOLLOW LN 650 MILLS RD

$425,000 $445,000 $452,500 $468,400 $475,000 $490,500 $500,000 $520,000 $529,000 $557,400 $565,000 $606,000 $620,000 $630,000 $640,000 $662,000 $675,000 $680,000 $685,000 $700,000 $707,000 $720,000 $731,250 $799,000 $805,000 $810,800 $828,000 $888,000 $1,000,000 $1,370,000 $300,000 $303,000 $345,000 $365,000 $380,000 $380,000 $380,000 $382,000 $385,000 $400,000 $406,450 $410,000 $415,000 $470,000 $480,000 $535,000 $599,950 $602,500 $630,000 $670,000 $750,000 $751,000 $760,000 $761,001 $785,000 $790,000 $839,500 $859,000 $864,000 $870,000 $875,000 $900,000 $975,000 $995,000 $1,250,000 $1,275,000 $1,295,000 $1,399,000 $1,400,000 $1,850,000 $2,200,000 $2,270,000 $2,600,000 $2,645,000 $3,400,000

VISIT INSIDESACRAMENTO.COM FOR COMPREHENSIVE NEIGHBORHOOD REAL ESTATE GUIDES WITH 6 MONTH HISTORICAL SALES DATA

* BASED UPON INFORMATION FROM METROLIST SERVICES, INC, FOR THE PERIOD MAY 1, 2021 THROUGH MAY 31, 2021. DUNNIGAN, REALTORS DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN ALL OF THESE SALES.

ILP/GRID n INSIDESACRAMENTO.COM

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Brain Holloway and Tricia Stevens Photo by Aniko Kiezel

The Right Way EAST SAC SHOWS HOW COMMUNITY GROUP SUCCEEDS

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he East Sacramento Improvement Association is not just another neighborhood group. Established in 1958 when Sacramento was still a sleepy backwater, it’s believed to be the city’s oldest neighborhood association. Founded as a way to coalesce local opposition to Mercy Hospital expansion when Dwight Eisenhower was in the White House, the East Sac Improvement group is one of the city’s largest and most effective grassroots advocates. It typically gets early peeks

GD By Gary Delsohn Building Our Future

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ILP/GRID JUL n 21

at proposed developments within its boundaries and has re-shaped or helped kill projects it dislikes. Part of the clout comes from its history and the fact that East Sac includes some of the city’s most exclusive areas, including the Fab 40s. The East Sac alliance surely has an advantage over less economically strong corners of Sacramento when it comes to being heard at City Hall. But its influence also comes from its leadership and wise, nuanced positions. The East Sac Improvement Association has moderated Mercy expansion plans over the years. It sidetracked a proposed Elvas Avenue connection that would have swamped the area with thousands of cars. Perhaps most famously, it helped stop the massive Centrage development along Business 80 in the early 1990s. The land is now occupied by McKinley Village, an attractive neighborhood developed by former California

State Treasurer Phil Angelides that complements its surroundings rather than overwhelms them. The group’s president is Tricia Stevens, a respected former principal planner for Sacramento County known for her thorough but fair reviews of proposed developments over a career that spanned more than 40 years. Brian Holloway is the group’s treasurer and land use chair, another planning professional who has run his own development entitlement and consulting firm for decades. Opposite sides of the urban growth coin, a public planner and a developer’s advocate, the two neighborhood leaders have always gotten along. “We know the language. We know the jargon,” Holloway says. “We know when good projects are being presented before us because we are not newbies in the development business.” If you want proof of the association’s thoughtfulness, ESIA stands out among

neighborhood groups for endorsing rather than attacking plans that could soon allow multiplexes in neighborhoods historically zoned single-family residential. In Sacramento and other cities where the move to add housing options has been proposed, most neighborhood groups predict the death of singlefamily residential neighborhoods. ESIA supports the proposed changes with conditions the city seems willing to accept regarding building size, location and other considerations. “We talked about it a lot and we felt we needed to have more housing choices in East Sacramento,” Stevens says. “We’ve been hearing from people for a long time that they want to rent an apartment or a duplex but have very few choices. We’d really like to see a more diverse neighborhood with different choices for renting and buying, and we also recognize that this strategy


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starts to address in some ways past housing inequities that have stemmed from strict single-family zoning.” Experience tells her a surge of new duplexes and triplexes in single-family neighborhoods is not likely. “The economics are not necessarily there,” Stevens says. “It’s an opportunity and a choice. But in the greater scheme of things, most of the growth in the city is going to take place along corridors and other infill sites.” Reasonableness can be hard to find in civic debates. The East Sac group exemplifies it. What other hot issues are East Sac residents most concerned with? Stevens and Holloway did not hesitate when asked: homelessness. Both agree the city is trying but not solving the crisis. “One of the biggest concerns people have is the whole criminal justice system where people that are homeless and may be committing crimes,” Stevens says. “They get picked up and released right away. We’re very encouraged with the city’s community response team and encouraged by the initiative to help with folks who have mental health issues, but it’s a very difficult problem to solve.”

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3406 American River Drive Suite B Sacramento, CA 95864 916-273-9040

Also high on the list are the city’s plans to require all-electric new buildings and a possible move to eventually require all-electric appliances in remodels and repairs as part of the fight against climate change. “It probably makes sense in the grand scheme of things,” Holloway says, “but people are very concerned about this sort of piecemeal, costly approach that could be coming on remodels or even if your air conditioning system breaks down and you’d be required to replace it will all-electric. It hasn’t happened yet, but we’re watching it very closely.” That’s what the East Sac Improvement Association does. It watches. It listens. It gets involved and does its homework. When the group weighs in, its views are respected and often heeded. The city and East Sacramento are better for it, a shining and too rare example of responsible civic engagement. Gary Delsohn can be reached at gdelsohn@gmail.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


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Sara Kronenberg with guitarist Mateo Briscoe (left) and bassist Ira Mandella. Photo by Aniko Kiezel

Devil's Due SINGER EXPLORES EMOTIONS THROUGH MUSIC

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ara Noelle Kronenberg had a revelation when she plunged into the Pacific at Ocean Beach in San Francisco on New Year’s Eve 2018. “I realized I wanted to do something to leave a legacy,” says Kronenberg, who fronts the Sacramento band Sara and the Devil. “I had always enjoyed playing music, but I’d never taken it seriously.” Kronenberg played guitar since age 15, but it took until her late 20s—and the frigid dip in the ocean—for her to decide to pursue a music career. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., Kronenberg grew up in Woodland and attended

JL By Jessica Laskey Meet Your Neighbor

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American River College before moving to Chico State for a degree in forensic anthropology. Her degree qualifies her to be a coroner, but she quickly realized, “I don’t want to look at dead people for the rest of my life.” She found her way into marketing for a local TV station and enjoys her day job. But music really lets her shine. “I love talking about mental health in my music,” says Kronenberg, whose band name is a nod to the personal demons she overcomes through music. “We’re raised to not talk about our emotions, but we need to change that rhetoric. This whole nation is struggling with anxiety and PTSD—we’re not equipped to deal with all the stress that we have these days. “Music is my outlet to talk about what I couldn’t talk about with my friends or therapist. ‘I’m Sara and I’m able to create beautiful music and relationships, but at the same time, I’m my own worst enemy.’ I struggle with PTSD and anxiety disorders, which is something I’m constantly working on.”

After her Pacific plunge, Kronenberg connected with two producers at Think Tank Music. They helped the singer-songwriter take the next step. She released her first EP and embarked on a tour across Britain, Europe and Israel. Back home, she started performing at the Starlet Room at Harlow’s, Old Ironsides, Goldfield Trading Post and Shine. Her solo act soon evolved into a full band. Her brother Jeremy plays drums on many tracks and she’s collaborated with other local acts, including Mateo Briscoe (a solo artist who provides background vocals for Sara and the Devil) and rock duo Cities You Wish You Were From. Kronenberg insists that while the pandemic hurt the music scene, it didn’t stop her from creating. In fact, she says, “It forced us to revisit what’s most important.” The only two shows she performed in 2020 were fundraisers, one for Black Lives Matter and another for the Sacramento LGBT Community Center.

Looking forward, Kronenberg is optimistic. In January, she released a single, “Deja Vu,” which she says “touches on the familial experience of constant disappointment from friends, loved ones or struggles you might be experiencing about your own self.” She’s working on an untitled new project with Cities You Wish You Were From, plus a new song with transgender artist Briscoe. No matter what she creates, her focus remains the same. “If I can relate to somebody through my music, that’s the ultimate goal.” For more information, find Kronenberg on Instagram @ saraandthedevil and online at saraandthedevil.wixsite.com/ saraandthedevil. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


Water Wise DROUGHT MEANS YOU MUST PLANT SMART

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cant rainfall and drought, measured in degrees like “severe” and “extreme,” have slithered back into our lives. Folsom Lake is a mud puddle, the Sierra Nevada snowpack was 59 percent of normal and rainfall is more than a foot below average. Sacramento did not receive an April downpour. Zero precipitation was recorded for the entire month Downtown, a record, and the driest April since 1877, when data was first collected. Not even a trace of moisture settled on lawns and flowerbeds. According to the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, landscape watering accounts for an estimated 50 percent of residential water consumption statewide. In the hotter inland suburban areas—think Sacramento—it jumps above 60 percent. Persistent climate trends present landscape challenges. Parched earth dictates watering restrictions, but also triggers help through programs, rebates and educational opportunities.

DV By Dan Vierria Garden Jabber

The city of Sacramento offers rebates for residents who decide to swap water-guzzling lawns with waterefficient landscaping. Customers can schedule water-wise house calls where deficiencies are red flagged and watersaving tips are presented. To schedule a home visit, call (916) 264-5011. Department of Utilities spokesperson Carlos Eliason says the city has partnered with landscape designers to help homeowners successfully plan makeovers. “Water efficiency is important year-round and especially so during dry periods, which are becoming more frequent,” Eliason says. “Saving water can help improve flexibility with water supplies in the future and education is critical to getting that message across. During the past few years, some Sacramento residents have even combined saving water with a sense of civic pride.” The city boasts a new demonstration garden at the Department of Utilities main office at 1395 35th Ave. It’s open to the public and features lowwater plants, more efficient irrigation systems and environmentally friendly concepts. A virtual tour and information about the garden can be accessed at cityofsacramento.org/utilities/ sustainability. Unfortunately, there is the perception that water-efficient landscapes are homely, barren Las Vegas-like moonscapes of gravel, river

rocks and spikey plants. Sacramento is not a desert city. Visit the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center at the back of Fair Oaks Park and discover the beauty of low-water perennials, ground covers and trees. The front demonstration gardens are open daily from dawn to dusk and plants are labeled. A plant list, garden layout and tips on creating and caring for a new landscape are online at sacmg. ucanr.edu. Click on “Water-efficient plants” and “Drought gardening” for numerous links to information. The UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden is an excellent source for landscaping ideas. Visit arboretum. ucdavis.edu for a list of Arboretum AllStars (100 plants) and another plant list with choices specific for Central Valley performance. The arboretum features several demonstration gardens open to the public focusing on low-water, year-round blooming plant choices. Admission is free. Elk Gove maintains Rain Garden Plaza on Laguna Springs Drive across from Colton Park. Drought-resistant plants, pervious paving systems, water harvesting and other educational conservation practices are on display. Plants are labeled. Those who decide to reduce or eliminate lawn areas may want to consider some of these plants: lavender, butterfly bush, rockrose, ceanothus, sage, penstemon, grevillea, rosemary, lantana, sedum and caryopteris. All new

plantings require regular watering for the first year. Once established, waterefficient plants use much less water. Escalating water bills and restrictions can be offset not only with water-wise plants, but simple home strategies. The Elk Grove Water District recommends prompt repair of leaky faucets, pipes and sprinkler heads. Running lawn sprinkler systems for a couple of shorter cycles rather than one long water cycle allows water to soak in between cycles and reduces runoff. This also works well in raised vegetable beds. The Regional Water Authority has many more tips and conservation information at bewatersmart.info. Each water district has its own prohibited practices. Check your water district website for specific information. Citations and fines are the reward for noncompliance during droughts. Good luck! Dan Vierria is a University of California Cooperative Extension Master Gardener for Sacramento County. He can be reached at masterg29@ gmail.com. For answers to gardening questions, contact the UCCE Master Gardeners at (916) 876-5338, email mgsacramento@ucanr.edu or visit sacmg.ucanr.edu. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

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Killer Tomatoes SUMMER BRINGS OUT CITY’S FAVORITE FRUIT

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omatoes are so in this season. Summer has arrived and farmers markets are bursting with freshly picked produce. Blackberries and apricots drip with juice. Cucumbers and corn are dressed in bright greens and yellows. To top it all off are tomatoes: cherry, beefsteak, green zebras, even Mr. Stripey heirlooms. Many local farmers are vendors at neighborhood farmers markets and sell their tomato varieties throughout the year. The popularity of tomatoes runs deep in local history. For decades over the past century, at least five canneries operated in Sacramento. Today the canneries are gone but tomatoes remain a favorite. Jamie Dettmer is a market manager for Certified Farmers’ Markets of

TMO By Tessa Marguerite Outland Farm-to-Fork

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Sacramento County. She’s also an avid farmers market enthusiast and knows many vendors by name. When asked who grows some of the best tomatoes, she rattles off an impressive list, describing the juicy and flavorful fruit grown on area farms. One vendor with exceptional tomatoes is Juan Toledo of Toledo Farms, a certified organic grower in Lodi who works with his father Federico Toledo. Toledo created his farm about 10 years ago on a modest 3 acres. A few years ago, the growing operation moved to its current plot in Lodi, with 30 acres of rich soil and plenty of space. While the battle with grass and weeds never ends, the seasonal harvest is worth it. Tomato varieties from Toledo Farms include heirloom, Brandywine and cherry. With help from the sun, soil and water, Toledo says his tomatoes grow quickly with sweet, juicy fruit. This summer, in addition to tomatoes, Toledo Farms is growing jalapeno, serrano and orange bell peppers, summer squash and watermelon. Whatever the season, there’s always something in rotation.

“It makes my job a lot easier when people say these tomatoes are a little bit sweeter or better tasting,” Toledo says. “Feels good.” Toledo attributes his tasty tomatoes to work and diligence. “There’s no cutting corners,” he adds. “When I sell my stuff, I know there’s hard work behind it. It’s pure.”

Toledo says his favorite way to eat his tomatoes is simply sliced on a sandwich or chopped cherry tomatoes in a salad. His daughter loves ripe, juicy tomatoes straight from the vine. Toledo is proud of his farm and the full-flavored produce he shares with the community. “Anything that comes out of Toledo Farms is grown with blood, sweat, tears


Selling or Buying? Put Neighborhood Experience and Knowledge to work for you

Federico Toledo

916-698-1961 /LWWOH5(6 FRP P and hard work,” the grower says. “I have a lot of satisfaction in that.” Toledo Farms is a vendor at the Elk Grove Farmers Market on Saturdays and the Downtown Farmers Market, temporarily relocated to the Arden Fair Mall parking lot on Sundays. Other vendors with ripe and ready-to-eat tomatoes can be spotted

throughout the summer months at any farmers market in the area. Tessa Marguerite Outland can be reached at tessa.m.outland@gmail.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n

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The Art of Public Speaking YOUTH PROGRAM HELPS BUILD SKILLS AND CONFIDENCE

Derek Yuan Photo by Aniko Kiezel

JL By Jessica Laskey Meet Your Neighbor

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hough Derek Yuan is only 17 years old, you wouldn’t know it talking to him on the phone. The Mira Loma High School graduate credits his impressive verbal poise to six years of speech and debate training. And he’s determined to give other kids the chance to develop their own public speaking skills through Leaders Speak, a free online training program he cofounded with fellow Mira Loma senior Hemang Dhaulakhandi. “I was very shy growing up,” Yuan admits. “I was really lucky I made the speech and debate team in middle school or I wouldn’t have gotten started on this path. Once I got to high school, I realized that I’d gained all these skills by participating in speech and

debate competitions—but not everyone has the same access to those opportunities. We decided to spread our experience and knowledge to as many people as possible.” Leaders Speak’s mission is to enhance students’ abilities and confidence in public speaking and persuasion. In 2019, Yuan and Dhaulakhandi started pitching Leaders Speak to local schools with the promise of low time commitment (only an hour a week) and an easy-to-follow curriculum covering argumentative structure, informative speech structure, persuasion theory, nonverbal communication and more—at no cost. Yuan even cold-called every elementary school in the Sacramento area, which showed him just how far his confidence had come. “If you’d asked me to cold call when I was just starting out in middle school, I would have run away,” the Carmichael resident says with a laugh. Their persistence paid off when Karyn Roth, a fifthgrade teacher at Catheryn Gates Elementary School in Roseville (where Dhaulakhandi’s younger sibling attends) decided to allow the enterprising teens to try the program out on her students. Leaders Speak was a hit, so Roth vouched for the founders and helped the program expand to other schools in the region. When COVID-19 hit and in-person classes were no longer possible, the program moved online to Zoom and has now reached 150 students in the United States, Canada, United Arab Emirates, India, Australia and China. “The growth was kind of a happy accident,” Yuan says. “Word of mouth has been really important, as has social media. I’m Chinese and my co-founder is Indian, so we have really vibrant social media networks we can use to communicate with our communities.” Yuan says that age has also helped him and his fellow trainers connect with their students. All 10 Leaders Speak volunteer trainers—top competitors in local, regional and state speech and debate tournaments—are under 18. “Being younger is much more helpful connecting with kids and getting them to learn,” Yuan says. “When an adult is lecturing you, it’s harder to relate to them, whereas our trainers share a similar culture— slang, things we’re interested in, music we listen to— and that allows us to create a fun environment. That’s one of the most important aspects of getting younger kids to learn. You have to have fun doing it or they won’t want to come back.” While Yuan will be attending Harvard College this fall, majoring in government, he’s clear that Leaders Speak will continue to be offered for free to reach as many kids as possible. “Seeing our students improving keeps us going,” Yuan says. “It’s heartwarming. Some kids come in really shy, but by the end of the session, they’ve opened up, they know how to formulate their thoughts and they’re more confident and better poised to take on the world.” For more information, visit theleaderspeak.org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail. com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n


Joel Hockman, CCO, Pucci’s Pharmacy at 3257 Folsom Boulevard

Maria E. Munoz, owner of East Patio Mexicano on 5100 Folsom Boulevard

Alan Leatherby, Owner, Leatherby’s Family Creamery at 2333 Arden Way

LOCAL PLEDGE CAMPAIGN KEEPS GROWING

Mary Ngo, Owner, The Sandwich Spot at 2108 11th Avenue

Cheri Malkasian, Owner, The Summer Porch at 3254 J Street

Photos Courtesy of Cecily Hastings, Lauren Stenvick and Sally Giancanelli We are happy to report that the PLEDGE 100% LOCAL campaign continues to grow and pick up new supporters. We invite other businesses and groups to join the effort. You can participate as simply as posting our signs at your business or by donating to fund signs and other resources. Visit insidesacramento.com/100local. For more information, contact cecily@insidepublications.com.

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Dwindling Flock DECLINES SPELL TROUBLE FOR CHURCH MEMBERSHIP

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ne recent Sunday morning, my wife and I pulled up to a stoplight near our home and spotted our neighbors alongside us. We exchanged the requisite fun faces of surprise before the green light signaled our Subarus to resume highway speed. For the next 10 minutes, we passed each other back and forth along a 10mile, four-lane highway in the foothills. Coincidently, we both turned off at the next stoplight. “It would be fun if they were joining us this morning,” I said to my wife. Three stoplights later, I drove into our church parking lot and glanced back to see the neighbors blur past as they continued into the Gold Country hills. I can’t say where they were headed, but according to a recent Gallop

NB By Norris Burkes Spirit Matters

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poll, they were probably like most Americans. They were not going to church. The poll brings startling news for the faithful. America’s membership in a church, synagogue or mosque has declined at least 1 percent each year— dropping from 70 percent in 1998 to an all-time low of 47 percent by 2020. Before 1998, church membership had remained steady as far back as 1937. In just 22 years, we had a whopping 23 percent decline—the sharpest in American history. Take a moment to consider that polling word “membership.” As a young man, I considered myself privileged to pastor a 200-member church. However, I rarely preached to more than 70 people. I quickly learned that membership doesn’t equal commitment, attendance or activity level. In a not-so-subtle effort to resolve that discrepancy and boost our attendance, I would sometimes ask neighbors, “If you went to church tomorrow, where would you go?” They would pause a moment before naming their preference: “Either the church I grew up in or the one down the street.” According to Gallop, the majority of people today would say, “I wouldn’t. I just wouldn’t.”

With more than 100 churches in the U.S. closing every week, where has our religion gone? Besides the usual suspects of yard sales, the mall and sporting events, Shadi Hamid suggests a more disturbing answer in a March 10 article in The Atlantic titled, “America Without God.” Hamid is a contributing writer for the literary and cultural magazine and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. His Atlantic article argues there is a suspicious connection between the decline in religious faith and today’s rising ideological intensity. He suggests our faith is a limited quantity. As we’ve invested more energy into our political ideals, we’ve become less faithful to our places of worship. If that’s true, we may have to consider faith as something we must budget. And if that’s the case, we are confronted with the question, “Where do we spend it?” We seem to be expending our faith coins on Red vs. Blue. Fascism vs. socialism. Pro-gun vs. gun control. Fox News vs. CNN. Trump vs. Biden. The Bible identifies our misspent faith in the very first commandment regarding idolatry. Exodus 20:3 says, “You shall have no other gods before me.”

Put simply, God should be the No. 1 item in our faith budget. (Not to be followed by country.) My working definition of idolatry is: “Excessive devotion to or reverence for some person or thing.” I’m as guilty of squandering my faith as you are. Consider the amount of time we’ve spent advocating for our pet issues on social media versus time spent volunteering at church or in prayer. No wonder Americans find their faith nearly bankrupt. In the meantime, the faithful are left to ask, “What do we do to save our churches?” I believe it’s possible to restore our faith and recover our devotion to church. We simply have to reintroduce the priorities of passion and relevance. I’ll share some thoughts on that next time. Norris Burkes can be reached at comment@thechaplain.net. He will be guest speaker at Elk Grove Presbyterian Church for the 10 a.m. service Sunday, July 11, at 8153 Elk Grove Blvd. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento. com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. Burkes is available for public speaking at civic organizations, places of worship, veterans groups and more. For details and fees, visit thechaplain.net. n


ZUCCHINI

These fast-growing squash are low in calories, con contain no saturated fats or A and other vitamins. cholesterol, and are a good source of protein, vitamin vita To eat: Slice horizontally, brush with olive oil, sprinkle sprink with salt and pepper and grill over a hot fire.

PEARS

Pears are packed with dietary fiber, antioxidants, minerals and vitamins. They are low in calories, too! To eat: Slice, top with a dollop of blue cheese and wrap with prosciutto for an elegant hors d’oeuvre.

WATERMELON

Low in calories, calorie watermelon contains dietary potassium, and vitamins C and A. Drink fiber, potassiu watermelon jjuice after a grueling workout. To eat: For a refreshing salad, serve with arugula and feta. f

Monthly Market A LOOK AT WHAT’S IN SEASON AT LOCAL FARMERS MARKETS IN JULY

TOMATOES

NECTARINES

Related to peaches, these delicious stone fruits are full of antioxidants and provide some B-complex vitamins and minerals. To eat: Combine with raspberries to make a summery crumble or cobbler.

CUCUMBERS

This low-calorie vegetable has a surprisingly high amount of vitamin K. The peel is a great source of dietary fiber. To eat: Peel and seed, then chop coarsely and combine with yogurt, garlic and lemon juice to make the zingy Greek dip known as tzatziki.

This summer treat—practically synonymous with Sacramento!—contains massive amounts of lycopene. According to a study from The University of Montreal, a diet rich in tomatoes may help reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer. To eat: Slice, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper for the perfect summer salad.

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First Love

FROM CIVIL RIGHTS TO THE RACE TRACK

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athaniel S. Colley died in 1992, but he’s having an excellent 2021. His home on Pleasant Drive in South Land Park has been declared a historic landmark, along with his office on S Street. A new school on Gerber Road is named for the civil rights attorney. Tributes to Colley invariably mention his work to end housing discrimination and his status as the first African American lawyer to practice in Sacramento. That would be January 1949, when he was admitted to the California Bar. Six years later, he built his home at 5114 Pleasant Drive, integrating a whites-only neighborhood. But Colley had another passion that usually goes ignored. He was a sportsman and mad about horse racing. He purchased box seats at Cal Expo and rarely missed a day’s action during the State Fair thoroughbred meet. When night harness racing became a Sacramento phenomenon in 1971, the best place to find Colley was not at his office or home, but the racetrack. Colley was a bold horseplayer. He loved to search the Daily Racing Form or harness program for long shots. He believed he could conjure opportunities missed by other bettors. I visited Colley’s box and Turf Club table several times and watched him in action. Judging from the torn betting tickets that littered the floor around his feet, I figured Colley was like many horseplayers. His long-shot dreams dissolved as his horse faded down the home stretch.

RG By R.E. Graswich Sports Authority

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Attorney Nathaniel Colley and son Nat Jr. with a thoroughbred in 1966 at Priscilla Bell Ranch in Elk Grove. Colley suffered defeat like any bettor, but he was no common horseplayer. He served seven years on the California Horse Racing Board. He bred hundreds of racehorses at Priscilla Bell Farm, his 122-acre ranch in Elk Grove. And in 1984, Colley kept harness racing alive in Sacramento by taking over the operation and running the show. Sadly, his Cal Expo harness season was a fiasco. It became a rare and costly failure in the Colley legacy. Colley resigned his seat on the racing board before the 1984 harness meet. Partnering with a food concession manager named Scott Esparza, Colley was the brains and financial heavyweight behind the operation. But he wasn’t a true heavyweight. “What I’m saying is that I’ve had to exhaust my credit with my bank,” Colley told friends as his harness meet

began. He borrowed $350,000 to ensure the track met minimum requirements for cash on hand. The odds were stacked against Colley. Track operators took small profits from parking, ticket sales and wagers made by customers. The real money was in food and drink. But Colley didn’t preside over concessions. Cal Expo sold the track’s hot dog and beer contract to Ogden, a global food concessionaire that today

operates as Aramark. Colley despised Ogden. “We put on the show and people come here to eat and drink beer. The profits are going to Ogden and they are running a tacky operation. It isn’t first class,” Colley said. He insisted Ogden failed to spend a promised $600,000 in track upgrades. “All Ogden has done is patch up the worn railings with tape. They’re just not taking care of the public.” Other problems emerged. Colley installed new wagering machines, but the equipment had glitches. Bettors grew frustrated. Several races were interrupted when the power grid failed at Cal Expo. Colley ended up losing money. “We wound up substantially in the hole,” he said. The 1984 harness season was a long shot that finished dead last. Colley continued to breed thoroughbreds at his Elk Grove ranch. His first horse—a filly named Najermape—was a gift from a client to Colley and his law partner, a future judge named Mamoru Sakuma. The filly debuted at Vallejo and won her first race. That was 1958. Colley was hooked. “The judge and I were so new we didn’t realize we were supposed to go to the winner’s circle,” Colley said. Brain cancer ended Colley’s life at age 73. He died at Priscilla Bell Farm near the stables he loved so much. R.E. Graswich can be reached at regraswich@icloud.com. Previous columns can be found and read at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

HIS FIRST HORSE DEBUTED AT VALLEJO AND WON HER FIRST RACE. THAT WAS 1958. COLLEY WAS HOOKED.


Protecting The Parkway BROADCAST VETERAN ADVOCATES FOR AMERICAN RIVER

George Nyberg Photo by Aniko Kiezel

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eorge Nyberg knows what the American River Parkway means to Sacramento. He can often be found biking, jogging or kayaking along the majestic waterway near his home in Campus Commons. “The thing that makes the parkway unique is the fish and wildlife, especially the birds,” Nyberg says. “It’s like a zoo without fences. The side channels are loaded with various birds like egrets, herons, cormorants, ducks, geese. But the river otters are my favorite.” Nyberg moved to Campus Commons 16 years ago. He wanted to be near the parkway where he trained for Eppie’s Great Race and Ironman triathlons.

JL By Jessica Laskey Meet Your Neighbor

He finished 26 editions of the Eppie’s competition and 20 Ironman events. Nyberg prefers to get on the river first thing in the morning when animals are feeding so he can get a close look and photograph them in perfect light. He spent more than 40 years in film and video production for TV stations, Aerojet, private clients and nonprofits before retiring eight years ago. Now his production skills create for a different purpose: as a board member of Save the American River Association, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year. SARA was founded in 1961 as a volunteer, grassroots nonprofit to spearhead the establishment of the American River Parkway and advocate for the adoption of the American River Parkway Plan. The plan protects and enhances wildlife habitat, fishery and recreational resources. Nyberg was introduced to the organization when he decided to make a documentary film about the parkway. He attended a SARA meeting and “one thing led to another,” he says. He’s served on the board for 10 years.

“Our biggest challenge is dealing with the homeless population,” Nyberg says. “Over the years, I’ve seen fewer birds and more campers—they displace animals and destroy the environment. I recently saw two bird species nesting in a tree, but then someone started camping under the tree and the nests are now empty.” In addition to advocating for ways to keep parkway wildlife safe, Nyberg makes sure the places where humans are allowed remain as clean and functional as possible. He brokered a partnership with Sacramento County’s waste management department to replace 100 damaged and rusting trash barrels along the parkway. Waste management and SARA split the cost and hope to repeat the process every year. As much as Nyberg enjoys being involved in the nonprofit, he knows

SARA must attract the next generation of parkway stewards. “What we really need is younger people to get involved in the organization,” says Nyberg, noting the group’s average age is “probably over 70.” Though the younger generation appears less interested in protecting this essential regional asset, Nyberg wants to change that by creating video content about “parkway pioneers” for the SARA webpage. “We need to protect the parkway now so it’s still here in the future,” he says. For more information, visit sarariverwatch.org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

THE THING THAT MAKES THE PARKWAY UNIQUE IS THE FISH AND WILDLIFE, ESPECIALLY THE BIRDS. IT’S LIKE A ZOO WITHOUT FENCES. ILP/GRID n INSIDESACRAMENTO.COM

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Place To Be

HUMAN SCALE, BEAUTY MAKE FOR GREAT SPACE

hat makes a great place? In what we hope are the waning days of the pandemic, people are traveling more. Many are headed to major public spaces around the country and the world. Those places promote social interaction, health, happiness and a sense of wellbeing. I’ve had the privilege of being in some of the world’s greatest spaces: St. Mark’s Square in Venice, Luxembourg Garden in Paris, Las Ramblas in Barcelona, Spanish Steps in Rome, High Line in New York, French Quarter in New Orleans and Grand-Place in Brussels. Can we have great places in Sacramento? Great places share common characteristics. They focus on people, not vehicles. Pedestrians rule. Architecture—its beauty and relationship to humanity—is essential.

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S W By Walt SeLfert Getting There

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Such places are relatively quiet, nurturing the spirit amid grittier, sometimes less relaxed confines of nearby surroundings. They have cafes or areas to sit and linger and socialize, people watch or contemplate. They draw tourists, but locals too. They are often near services within a dense city grid that eases access by foot. What are the best places in Sacramento? We’ve got the American River Parkway, State Capitol, McKinley and Land parks, and Old Sac. But all lack essential aspects of great places. They are not really gathering spots with services nearby or within walking distance of other desirable destinations. The under-the-freeway farmers market brought people together Downtown, but in a charmless setting. Shopping under the W/X freeway is not the same as gazing at the Doge’s Palace. And the quality of the market’s setting hasn’t improved with its temporary relocation to an Arden Fair parking lot next to a defunct Sears. In 2012, the American Planning Association named Cesar Chavez Plaza and its park one of America’s Great Places. Homelessness was less of a factor then, apparently. We’ve made improvements in Sacramento. Old Sac used to be Skid Row. The once-industrial R Street corridor was thriving before the

pandemic. Midtown is vibrant and livable with a lively farmers market. Midtown’s transformation was aided by junking three-lane, one-way streets. Those speedways were good for commuters, bad for residents. Similar changes on Freeport Boulevard and 21st Street south of Broadway enhanced livability. Some places the city has made worse. The Historic City Cemetery, once a green oasis with an award-winning rose garden, is increasingly desolate and forsaken. We’ve got some not-so-great places, streets that are lousy to walk, scary to bike and unpleasant to see. In my neighborhood, J Street between 56th Street to Fair Oaks Boulevard is a sterile, mini-freeway. Bike lanes were added on J, and the intersections of J and H with Carlson Drive were improved after several bicyclist fatalities. But no sane bike rider uses the road to cross the H Street Bridge. And there’s little indication, beyond monument signs, that a university is right there. Other places have few people out walking, biking and enjoying the surroundings. Fair Oaks Boulevard, Howe, Watt, El Camino, Arden, Marconi, Northgate and Truxel come to mind. There are others in South Sac. I believe it’s difficult, if not impossible, to have great places that

lack complete streets. Complete streets are places where pedestrians and bicyclists feel safe, comfortable and welcome. Great places are not strip malls with uninspired architecture fronted by parking lots along six-lane streets. Fastfood outlets with drive-in windows don’t make great places. Local businesses might. “Place making” has become a thing. We deserve to live with inviting public spaces. Celebrating what’s unique and special about where we live makes us feel good. It makes our community stronger and friendlier. We can’t duplicate European plazas from the 15th century, but we can create places where people can revel in their surroundings. In Sacramento, we can take greater advantage of our rivers. It can’t be done overnight, but it can be done. We’ve had enough huddling in our houses and social distancing for a lifetime. Walt Seifert is executive director of Sacramento Trailnet, an organization devoted to promoting greenways with paved trails. He can be reached at bikeguy@surewest.net. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n


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Cue T he Music SACRAMENTO CHORAL SOCIETY & ORCHESTRA CELEBRATES 25 YEARS

R

unning an arts organization is difficult in the best of times. It’s all the more trying during a global pandemic. But Donald Kendrick is unfazed. As the founder and music director of the Sacramento Choral Society & Orchestra, he’s helped the organization survive and thrive for the past 25 years—and he’s not stopping anytime soon. “We founded this organization to provide world-class choral orchestral music for the greater Sacramento community,” Kendrick says. “We take our job very seriously—to inspire people, lift them up, touch them in ways that nothing else can. It’s a huge responsibility and we don’t take that for granted.” SCSO is notable for producing more than 150 classical choral orchestral concerts in its first 24 seasons and completing more than 10 international tours. It’s also the only chorus in the country that maintains a professional 55-member symphony orchestra. SCSO musicians are contracted members of the American Federation of Musicians labor union, which means they are guaranteed to perform a certain number of concerts per year. “Lots of people ask how Sacramento manages to have an amateur chorus running a

Donald Kendrick Photo by Aniko Kiezel

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855 57th Street (Between J & H Streets) professional symphony orchestra,” Kendrick says. “It does seem kind of like putting the cart before the horse, but we’re able to do it because we control our finances and we have an effective, hard-working board. We haven’t gone into debt in all 25 years. We’re the capital of California, for God’s sake, we have to have a professional symphony orchestra!” Kendrick has always been passionate about music. He studied at the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago, New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Stanford University and the Eastman School of Music in New York, where he earned his doctorate and also served on the faculty. He landed in Fair Oaks in the mid-1980s to take a teaching job at Sacramento State, from which he retired in 2018 after 33 years. During his tenure there, he served as the director of choral activities, conducted three university choirs and ran the graduate degree program in choral conducting, which he founded in 1986. Over the past four decades, he’s found time to teach at universities

and conduct choirs all over North America, co-found the Sacramento Children’s Chorus (and serve as its artistic director) and adjudicate choir festivals across the country. When he was first teaching at Sac State, Kendrick was appointed parttime chorus master for the original Sacramento Symphony Orchestra. When the symphony went belly-up— not once, but twice—and musicians started to move away, members of the chorus begged Kendrick to keep them together. And so, in 1996, SCSO was born. “We couldn’t let these wonderful players leave Sacramento,” Kendrick recalls. “I talked it through with my partner Jim (McCormick, now SCSO president and CEO) and we decided to take it step by step and try it for one year. We did pretty well.” A quarter of a century later, SCSO is still making music despite all odds. When the pandemic hit, the organization pivoted online. The group uploaded behind-the-scenes videos, informational talks and recordings of past performances for free to its YouTube channel.

SCSO hosted a virtual version of its annual Singathon fundraiser to keep audiences engaged until the group can return to its newly refurbished home at the SAFE Credit Union Performing Arts Center on L Street. “We’re so looking forward to getting out of this pandemic,” says Kendrick, who finds time to serve as the organist and director of music at Sacred Heart Church, where he conducts men’s chorus Vox Nova and choir ensemble Schola Cantorum. “There’s no such thing as a virtual choir. We’ve all got to be in the same room, breathing the same air, feeling that connection, making something beautiful out of thin air. We’re here to bring beauty to the world.”

Pamela Hartvig

Fine Art

For more information, visit sacramentochoral.org. Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Previous profiles can be found at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @ insidesacramento. n

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Delizioso! HEAVENLY GNOCCHI TOPS NEW RESTAURANT EXPERIENCE

Photos by Linda Smolek

T MO By Tessa Marguerite Outland Restaurant Insider

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M

attone Ristorante is East Sacramento’s newest fine dining Italian restaurant. It’s the type of place

where you have to think about which fork to use, where the salt and pepper shakers go untouched. It’s also where the truffle ricotta gnocchi makes your mouth water.

For many Sacramento natives, Mattone will not be hard to find. The location on Folsom Boulevard was home to the famed Español restaurant, which closed in 2020. The new eatery


&KDUDFWHU &RPSHWHQFH &RPPLWPHQW &RPPXQLW\ ³,W ZDV DQ DEVROXWH SOHDVXUH ZRUNLQJ ZLWK 6WHIIDQ :H ZHUH ORRNLQJ IRU DQ ROGHU KRPH LQ 6DFUDPHQWR DQG ZHUH TXLWH SDUWLFXODU ZLWK RXU QHHGV 6WHIIDQ UHDOO\ LV DQ H[SHUW DW ROGHU KRPHV DQG JXLGHG XV WKURXJK WKH SURFHVV DQVZHULQJ DOO RXU TXHVWLRQV VWHHULQJ XV LQ WKH ULJKW GLUHFWLRQ IURP GD\ 3XUFKDVLQJ D KRPH LV VXFK D ELJ GHFLVLRQ DQG LW¶V VR LPSRUWDQW WR SDUWQHU ZLWK DQ DJHQW \RX WUXVW 6WHIIDQ %URZQ LV WKDW JX\ KH PDGH WKH SURFHVV HDV\ IRU XV H[SODLQLQJ HDFK VWHS DQG JXLGLQJ XV LQ H[SHFWDWLRQV %LJ WKXPEV XS WR 6WHIIDQ ´ ~Rose and Dan brought life back to the old building when June Chang opened Mattone in May. Stepping inside the familiar place, I found it warm and welcoming. A simple arrangement of a vase with pink carnations graced each starched white tablecloth. Surrounded by old brick walls and low candlelight, the sound of clinking glasses and muted laughter saturated the space. The wait staff moved through the three dining rooms like actors in a play, all rehearsed and confident in their roles. The relatively short menu—an indication of a chef who has perfected the craft—offers four sections: antipasti, insalate and la zuppa, primi piatti and secondi piatti. The dishes are written in Italian, but their descriptions are decoded in English. The first dish on the menu is calamari fritti. The shareable plate of crispy squid is surprisingly spicy, seasoned with cayenne and smoked paprika, accompanied by a creamy tomato sauce and lemon wedges. Each bite provides a delectable crunch. For more daring eaters, there is the spuma di finocchino con granchio, a creamy crab salad layered on a fennel mousse topped with Sterling caviar. It’s mild in flavor but elegant, buttery and

smooth, served in a chilled martini glass and garnished with yellow endive. If you order nothing else at Mattone, you absolutely must try the gnocchi al tartufo. You have not lived until you have had one bite of this dumpling. The waitress is correct when she predicts your eyes will roll back in your head after biting into one heavenly piece. Blanketed in a rich cream sauce, the mouthwatering dish of truffle ricotta gnocchi is served with simple presentation, topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. The gnocchi itself is unbelievably fluffy and smooth, like a savory marshmallow dripping with garlic and butter. The menu changes seasonally, but the gnocchi should not be missed. Two of the three appetizing options for the secondi piatti include pollo al Mattone and pesce del giorno. The first dish is served with a graceful presentation of traditionally blackened chicken atop seasonal vegetables with a decorative drizzle of a dark, sweet sauce called vincotto. It was cooked to absolute tenderness. The pesce del giorno was presented beautifully with a creamy walnut pesto drizzled over braised garbanzo beans and a mountain of silky cauliflower puree. All that topped with dark green

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arugula and a thick, juicy piece of seasoned swordfish. The wine selection features many Italian-style vinos, including Chianti, Chianti classico and brunello. If you manage to save room for dessert, it may be difficult to decide between a traditional affogato or cappuccino cheesecake. No doubt the reason so many families dine here together is for everyone to take bites from each other’s plate. Mattone is a fine dining experience. It’s also a memorable place for a couple to share an intimate meal or

celebrate an anniversary. Call ahead for reservations. With its warm atmosphere, attentive staff and thoughtfully crafted Italian food, Mattone Ristorante could easily become the dining destination for locals, as well as big city folks. Mattone Ristorante is at 5723 Folsom Blvd.; (916) 758-5557; mattonesac.com. Tessa Marguerite Outland can be reached at tessa.m.outland@gmail.com. Previous columns can be found and shared at InsideSacramento.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento. n

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