December 2012 Journal Plus

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Journal DECEMBER 2012





Linda Aiello-Madison Broker-Associate

Serving the entire SLO County since 1978


Annette Mullen

Ken Arritt


Cindy Newton

Twila Arritt

Pamela Bliss



Gentleman’s Ranch 3.76 acres with vineyard and fully insulated 4900+ square foot steel shop with living quarters. Dry farming Zinfandel grapes. Electric gate + alarm system with cameras. Great opportunity for a car collector, or nicely located for potential tasting room. For more info call 904-6616. $1,275,000

Fantastic location and income with this delightful 1 bedroom 1 bath 1926 home, single car garage/ storage. Also a separate rental 2 bedroom, 1 bath unit in the back. Close to the government center and easy access to highway. Mixed zoning with lots of potential. $489,500

Spacious Cul-de-sac Home in Orcutt

Theresa Carroll


Near the Village of AG, Gleaming remodeled home in rural setting. 3 car garage + bonus rooms, RV parking, completely fenced oversized lot. More info call 904-6616. $459,000 Great SLO Location!

Abundant space in this 4bedroom/3bath home, located in Cul-de-sac. Featuring 1954 SF of living space, foyer, fireplace in living/family room, back yard, plenty of light throughout, kitchen breakfast bar, covered patio, 2 car garage, large yard w/sprinkler system, on .23 acre. Workshop and room for RV on side of garage. Near Orcutt high schools $429,500

55+ Senior Complex

Vicky Hall


Stephanie Hamilton REALTOR®



Janet Shaner REALTOR®

Larry D. Smyth


David Hamilton

Laura Rizzoli

Mary Rosenthal


Patricia Garrison


Fantastic Opportunity in SLO!



Kelly Hannula


Fantastic location! Sunny, energy efficient, quiet upstairs flat. Gorgeous views of Bishop’s Peak from the SW deck. Close to Cal Poly, shopping, & hiking. Bright, open floor plan with attached one car garage. All units must be owner occupied. This complex was designed to provide quality housing at substantially lower prices for Cal Poly’s faculty and staff but is also available to the general public with certain resale/rental restrictions. $275,000

Located within walking distance to Arroyo Grande theatre, restaurant, grocery, pharmacy, coffee shop and many other stores. Awesome Clubhouse (with full kitchen). 2 bedroom, 2 bath End unit contains granite countertops, storage, patio and fireplace. $268,900

Conveniently located in the heart of SLO & the Village of Arroyo Grande 21 Santa Rosa Street, Suite 100, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405 102 E. Branch Street, Suites C & D, Arroyo Grande, CA 93420

Chris Stanley REALTOR®

Christine Williams REALTOR®

With Gratitude

to all of our nonprofit partners for the important work you do to make our community stronger. At this special time and throughout the year, it’s our privilege to stand beside you in support of our friends and neighbors.

From everyone at SBB&T, thank you for your partnership in 2012.

Achievement House, Inc. Alzheimer’s Association Amazing Surf Adventures American Heart Association Arroyo Grande Rotary Club ARTS Obispo Atascadero Christian Home Avila Beach Community Foundation Ballet Theatre San Luis Obispo Big Brothers Big Sisters of SLO County Bishop’s Peak PTA Boys & Girls Club of North SLO County Cal Poly Athletics Canzona Women’s Ensemble Central Coast Ag Network Central Coast Economic Forecast Central Coast Pug Rescue Central Coast Vineyard Team Central Coast Zoo Society Children’s Creative Project Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo Community Health Centers Foundation Court Appointed Special Advocates of SLO County Cuesta College - Track & Field Cuesta College Foundation Dana Adobe Nipomo Amigos Earth Day Alliance Ecologistics, Inc. El Camino Homeless Organization Endeavour Institute Estrella Warbirds Museum Family Care Network, Inc. Festival Mozaic 5 Cities Homeless Coalition

“Big Brothers Big Sisters is proud to partner with Santa Barbara Bank & Trust. Their contributions to our Board of Directors and support of our youth mentoring programs make a BIG difference in the lives of children on the Central Coast.”

Rotary Club of Paso Robles Rotary District 5240 Charitable Foundation San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce San Luis Obispo Child Abuse Prevention Council San Luis Obispo Child Development Center SLO County Bicycle Coalition SLO County Community Foundation SLO County Housing Trust Fund San Luis Obispo Downtown Association San Luis Obispo Farmer’s Market San Luis Obispo High School San Luis Obispo Lions San Luis Obispo Little Theatre San Luis Obispo Museum of Art San Luis Obispo Parks Open Space & Trails Foundation San Luis Obispo Symphony San Luis Obispo Tigers San Luis Obispo United Methodist Church

“Santa Barbara Bank & Trust has been our community partner for over a decade, financing the purchase of critical housing for very low income people disabled by mental illness. SBB&T’s continued support has been absolutely invaluable!” Jill Bolster-White

Executive Director Transitions-Mental Health Association

Grid Alternatives History Center of SLO County Homeless Animal Rescue Team Hospice SLO Jack’s Helping Hand Jewish Community Center of San Luis Obispo Kids Cancer Research Foundation Kiwanis of Greater Pismo Beach Laguna Middle School PTA Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo Leadership San Luis Obispo League of Women Voters of SLO County Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Life Steps Foundation Literacy Council of San Luis Obispo Loaves & Fishes Mission Community Services Corporation Morro Bay National Estuary Program Nipomo Area Recreation Association Noor Foundation North County Connection North County Women’s Resource Center Opera San Luis Obispo Pacific Wildlife Care Paso Robles Art Association Paso Robles Chamber of Commerce Paso Robles Education Alliance Peoples’ Self-Help Housing Pismo Coast Association of Realtors Charitable Foundation, Inc. REC Foundation Restorative Partners

“The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art appreciates Santa Barbara Bank & Trust’s community partnership. It is partnerships like this that help the Museum of Art present thought provoking exhibitions and art education for all ages.” Karen Kile

Executive Director San Luis Obispo Museum of Art

Anna Boyd-Bucy

Executive Director Big Brothers Big Sisters of SLO County

Food Bank Coalition of SLO County Foundation for SLO County Public Libraries Foundation for the Performing Arts Center French Hospital Medical Center Friends of Hearst Castle Friends of Prado Day Center


Senior Nutrition Program Soroptomist International South County Family Education and Cultural Center Special Olympics SoCal - SLO Spokes Resources for Non Profits Studios on the Park The Monday Club of San Luis Obispo The Paso Robles Association of REALTORS® The SARP Center of SLO County The T.E.A.C.H. Foundation The Wellness Kitchen Transitions Mental Health Association Tri-Counties Regional Center United Cerebral Palsy United Way of SLO County Vocal Arts Ensemble Wilshire Health & Community Services Women’s Community Center Women’s Network of San Luis Obispo Women’s Shelter Program of San Luis Obispo Woods Humane Society



The People, Community, and Business of Our Beautiful Central Coast ADDRESS

654 Osos Street San Luis Obispo California 93401








ADVERTISING Jan Owens CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Susan Stewart, Natasha Dalton, Joseph Carotenuti, Dr. Julian Crocker, Sarah Hedger, Maggie Cox, Deborah Cash, Ruth Starr, Taylor Coffman, Will Jones, Ynana Zovich, Jan Marx, Bob Huttle, Andrew Carter, Gordon Fuglie, and Phyllis Benson Mail subscriptions are available at $20 per year. Back issues are $2 each. Inquires concerning advertising or other information made by writing to Steve Owens, JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE, 654 Osos Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401. You can call us at 546-0609, our fax line is 546-8827, and our e-mail is View the entire magazine on our website at JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE is distributed monthly free by mail to all single family households of San Luis Obispo and is available free at over 600 locations throughout the county. Editorial submissions are welcome but are published at the discretion of the publisher. Submissions will be returned if accompanied by a stamped self addressed envelope. No material published in the magazine can be reproduced without written permission. Opinions expressed in the byline articles are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE. Cover photo by Tom Meinhold

PEOPLE 10 12 14 16


HOME & OUTDOOR 18 20 22 24 26 28


COMMUNITY 30 32 34 36 46







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We are proud to support the local organizations that contribute to our community. Big Brothers Big Sisters

Pacific Wildlife Care

of San Luis Obispo County

San Luis Obispo County

Cal Poly Athletics

The Prado Day Center

Child Development Center


of the Central Coast

The Conservation of Old Mission SLO Family Care Network Food Bank Coalition of San Luis Obispo County

Rotary Club of San Luis Obispo

SLO Noor Foundation Clinic Tiger Athletics


CASA Court Appointed Special Advocates

San Luis Obispo High School

Womenade San Luis Obispo County

Women’s Shelter Program of San Luis Obispo County

Hospice SLO San Luis Obispo County

Woods Humane Society

Best wishes to all our clients and friends for the Holiday Season 805.541.2888 962 Mill Street • San Luis Obispo, California 93401 •

From the publisher


or more than 30 years, Jan and I have made our home on the Central Coast, and we’ve made some very close friends along the way. One of these is with the Cole family. We watched John Cole grow up and develop into a wonderful young man, devoted husband, and loving father. Today, John and Darsie have four children of their own, just as warm and loving as their parents. Recently, 9-year-old Cambell Cole was named the West Coast Rodeo Association’s All-Around Cowgirl. Susan Stewart caught up with Cambell and her family, and we’re proud to tell her story inside. This month, we also tell you about the community project that David Iwerks completed in Avila Beach; and you’ll really enjoy S.A.V.E.’s tribute to Bobbie Loomis. Bob Huttle writes about a transistor radio he received as a child at Christmas. His story makes a perfect profile for December. The last quarter of each year is one of great celebration in the Owens household. We celebrate five October birthdays by having dinner at McLintock’s in Shell Beach—a tradition now in its 30th straight year. In November, we celebrate two more birthdays, Thanksgiving, and my parents’ 65th wedding anniversary! In December, our four generations gather together to celebrate the holidays, and there is always plenty of love, laughter, and memories to share. This photo gives it all away: There’s nothing quite like four generations of family … partying together.

May your holiday season be filled with as much love, laughter, and happiness as your hearts and houses can hold. And as always, enjoy the magazine.

Steve Owens


PERFORMING ARTS CENTER Cal Poly Choirs' "A Christmas Celebration" 12/1 • 8 p.m.

Cuesta Master Chorale "Vespers" & Holiday Carols 12/15 • 8 p.m.

Christopher Cohan Center Presented by CP Music Dept.

Christopher Cohan Center

Popovich Comedy Pet Theatre 12/1 • 2 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Forbest Pipe Organ Holiday Concert & Sing Along 12/16 • 3 p.m.

Alex & Faye Spanos Theatre

Christopher Cohan Center

The Nutcracker 12/8 • 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. & 12/9 • 2 p.m.

The Irish Tenors with the SLO Symphony 12/21 • 8 p.m.

Christopher Cohan Center

Christopher Cohan Center

Presented by Cal Poly Arts

Presented by Cuesta Master Chorale

Presented by PAC Outreach

Presented by Civic Ballet of SLO

Presented by SLO Symphony & Cal Poly Arts

Paula Poundstone 12/14 • 7:30 p.m.

MET Live in HD: Verdi's Aida 12/30 • 2 p.m.

Alex & Faye Spanos Theatre

Christopher Cohan Center

Presented by Opera SLO & Cal Poly Arts

The Velveteen Rabbit with Degas and Marie (his Little Dancer) 12/15 • 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. 12/16 • 2 p.m. Alex & Faye Spanos Theatre

Presented by Ballet Theatre San Luis Obispo

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WWW.PACSLO.ORG | 805-756-4TIX (4849)

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682 Higuera St. San Luis Obispo • 541-2896

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With coupon only. Valid at the SLO store only. Offer valiid through December 18, 2012. Not valid with any other offer or promotion, discount taken at register.



Cambell Cole ... “It’s a hard knock life!” By Susan Stewart


er older sister Lynnde was watching the announcements from atop her horse at the back of the crowded arena. It had been a nailbiting competition; the two highest scoring participants in the West Coast Rodeo Association’s All-Around Cowboy events were neck and neck right down to last minute. No one knew who would win it. So when 9-yearold Cambell Cole’s name was called, Lynnde stifled a scream of delight as she watched her little sister’s face register the fact that she had just won this year’s top honor—All Around Cowgirl—in her age group (from an original field of 50) this last September.

At first glance, the small, blonde, and angelically-featured girl looks far too fragile to be a rodeo champion; but it’s not long before the competitive gleam in Cambell Cole’s eyes and the testimony of those who know her best, convince you otherwise. Born and raised in San Luis Obispo, the fourth-grader has been riding horses from her earliest memory; as have her three siblings—Lynnde (12), Clayton (10), and Caleb (7). Their parents, John and Darsie Cole, are cattle ranchers with herds in San Luis Obispo, Los Osos, and Huasna. So the fact that their children are “cowhands” is both natural … and helpful! What is not so “natural” are the stellar performances from Cambell in goat tying, pole bending, barrel racing, dummy roping, and keyholing. She participated in her first rodeo in Parkfield, California, when she was just 4 years old. She’s been competing … and winning ever since. Crediting her trainers, Leah and Clint Cochrane, and their glossy brown horse called Uno, with much of her success, Cambell is a fierce competitor, dedicated to improving her skills through hard work and a lot of practice. Longtime friends of the Cole family, the Cochranes mentored Cambell, giving her Uno to ride and lots of practice time in their arena. “They are very generous, very giving people,” said Darsie Cole. When Cam was just 5 years old, she had a scare that might keep most of us from ever D E C E M B E R


Tom Meinhold photo

climbing on a horse again. It seems she was riding a horse called Cherokee, who suddenly claimed a mind of his own and “ran off” with little Cambell holding on for her life. The tiny girl was thrown off the horse’s back, sliding around to end up upside-down under Cherokee’s belly before the horse finally stopped and let her dismount properly. “To go from that experience at such a young age to now wanting to ride fast and win events, just shows how determined she is,” said Darsie. Cambell is a member of 4H, is an honor roll student, and competes in spelling bees. Oh, and when she’s not in the rodeo arena, Cambell is on another kind of stage. Last month, she was a singer in “The Follies,” a fundraiser for Parkinson’s Disease held every year at the Clark Center in Arroyo Grande. For six performances this last October, talented children

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entertained sell-out crowds with a medley of popular Broadway tunes. Cambell has been taking piano lessons for a year, loves acting, and has always been a strong singer. “I want to be a singer when I grow up,” she said, when quizzed about her future plans. She admires Carrie Underwood, Reba McIntyre, and Adele. “She has a lot of emotion,” said sister Lynnde. “But in a good way.” Family members call her “sweet … determined … loving … funny … brave … and energetic.” And it’s clear they are her biggest fans. “She makes us laugh so hard, we’re crying at the dinner table,” said brother Clay. When asked what advice she might have for other kids who have their eyes on the


Cambell singing in the “Follies” at the Clark Center

prize in the world of competitive rodeo, Cambell says, “Stick to it, practice, and have fun.” And when asked what the strongest influence in her life so far has been? “I’d have to say

Tom Meinhold photo


The John Cole Family: John and Darsie, with children, Clayton, Caleb, Lynnde and Cambell

my sister Lynnde,” said Cambell. “She always helps me, and she’s very smart.” With such loving parents, supportive siblings, generous mentors, and wonderful horses to ride, Cambell Cole could hardly be said to be

living a “hard-knock” life. Not in the sense that the lyricists for the musical Annie meant it anyway. But given the knocks she takes in the rodeo arena on a regular basis, it’s no wonder that Cambell’s favorite show-tune from this year’s Follies was “It’s a Hard-Knock Life!”



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PEOPLE David Iwerks 12

avila beach healing garden By Will Jones


orticulture major David Iwerks is a perfect fit for the Cal Poly “Learn by Doing” philosophy. Ever since he was a boy growing up in Apple Valley, David has been attracted to hands-on activities, like riding and maintaining dirt bikes. During high school David hung around the Apple Valley airport and learned to build sport aircraft. He became an expert in a process called “dope and fabric,” used to cover the wings of early aircraft with cotton shrunk and made taut by application of cellulose dope, a kind of shellac. The Wright Brothers used this method to cover their Wright Flyer. “When I was 12 and 13 I used to come home and tell my mother, ‘Mom, I flew to Laughlin today!’ She freaked out but she knew how much I loved planes.” After graduating from high school in 1997, David worked in an aeronautics machine shop that built parts for the space station, but he returned to airport work, eventually in Santa Paula. “I became well known for my fabric work. The FFA wanted me to do their private aircraft.” But the chemicals used in the modern version of dope and fabric were too toxic, and while working at the airport he started taking horticulture classes at Ventura College. “I always enjoyed working outside in the garden with my mom.” By the end of his first year, in 2005, he was already getting design and build work, encouraged and supported by his mentor on the Ventura

College faculty, Dexter McDonald. He left school and ran his own business until the economic decline in 2009, when he moved to the central coast and started attending classes at Cuesta. A year later he transferred to Cal Poly, around the same time the Avila Beach Civic Association received a $9000 grant from Archie McLaren and the Central Coast Wine Classic to build a garden behind the community building and post office. Good things happen when talent and opportunity meet. Early in 2012, Avila Beach Civic Association board member Mary Matakovich contacted Cal Poly horticulture professor Dave Hanning looking for a student who might be interested in designing and building the Avila Beach Healing Garden as a senior project. David, a member of the Horticulture Club, heard about the project and volunteered. With the support and assistance of faculty members John Peterson and Melanie Mills, David began working with the Association’s board. “Cal Poly is the only school that requires a senior project for a bachelor’s degree. By the time we graduate we have real experience doing what we want to do. Teachers like John and Melanie do a fantastic job. The project was great for me because I aspire to design and build entertainment venues and parks.” One of the big challenges for David was working with a large board that had many visions of what the garden should look like. Given general agreement that it should be a place of healing and bonding, it was decided that a Native American Medicine Wheel design should be at the center of the 80 x 160-foot space. The wheel’s four quadrants represent the elements, the seasons, and the four directions; and the circular shape represents the rhythm of life. Members of the community donated the bricks that separate the quadrants.



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plant palette with seven varieties of plants so that the colors won’t clash with colors used in ceremonies like weddings.” If all goes as planned, the garden will be completed in the spring of 2013. Along the way David has enjoyed meeting and working with people in the community. “Bill Boyce is a vibrant volunteer who worked closely with me throughout the building process, as did Gary and Teddy Beddingfield.” According to Civic Association Director Mary Foppiano, “David has been wonderful to work with and generous with his talents. We wouldn’t have this beautiful garden without him.”

“The healing properties of the medicine wheel have been used for thousands of years and will be sure to bring healing and joy for many more in Avila. There will also be a three tiered fountain, but rather than water, blue hued succulents will drape out of the fountain. The sculpture will be seen from all angles of the garden and pick up the colorful highlights of seasonal change. We have chosen a simple

David learned early in his educational life that he had a learning disability, a processing disorder that impacted his ability to read and recall information. There was a large discrepancy between his IQ and his performance on reading assessments. Rather than be daunted by that disability, he learned that he could succeed through determination and persistence. When he arrived at Cal Poly he quickly found out “what I didn’t know,” and he worked hard to learn how to do research and master the skills necessary to compete successfully with other students.

Shell Beach

750 Mattie Rd. 773-1892

Paso Robles 1234 Park St. 238-2233


From the Avila project David learned the importance of team work, how to meet the needs of a variety of people and how to use Auto CAD (Computer Assisted Drafting) for his design work. “I would like to go on to get a Master’s in parks and recreation, studying what brings people to public venues, parks and gardens, and then design and build facilities that will satisfy people.” David also told me about a two month bicycle trip he took from the Canadian to the Mexican border, and he showed me his garage full of motorcycles, including a vintage 1956 model, that he is rebuilding. He is a skilled craftsman who says “yes” to challenges, and my guess is that the public will benefit from his creativity and hard work for a long time. The Mission of the Avila Beach Civic Association is “To improve the lives of those living in and visiting Avila Beach through social, educational, and recreational activities.” With the help of David Iwerks on the garden project, mission accomplished. For more information about the healing garden, activities and events in Avila Beach, go to

San Luis Obispo 686 Higuera St. 541-0686

Arroyo Grande 133 Bridge St. 481-1700

Steamers of Pismo

or online at:



1601 Price St. Pismo Beach 773-4711

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The Frank Family Planting trees and making memories for four generations By Susan Stewart


ranklin Frederick Frank was a Forest Firefighter Foreman. Feels a little like we’re in the middle of an old Laugh-In sketch, doesn’t it? You know; the ones with Frank and Franny Farkel and their kids Fritz and Fred Farkel? Except this is real life, and “Fred” (as he likes to be known) Frank is a real guy. For four generations, his family has been planting, growing, and selling eight different varieties of Christmas trees on the land his parents, Fred and Wanda Frank, bought during the 1930s and ‘40s. On 55 protected acres in rural Atascadero, Fred, his wife, his children, and grandchildren, work year-round to ensure that local families can come every winter to choose the perfect holiday tree. They’ve been doing it since the first crop was planted back in 1959. Now this gorgeous forest is home to a plethora of happy wildlife, especially deer, who wind their graceful way among the trees, fearless and calm, as if they owned the place. It was E.G. Lewis’s enticing promises that brought the first Franks to California from their native states. Lewis, the “founding father” of


for ys op da ! Sh Holi will d the t Goo a


Proceeds from sale may be tax deductible! We do all DMV paperwork! All vehicles offered for sale in San Luis Obispo benefiting Local Goodwill Programs. Donations support workforce development services in SLO County. “Our business is changing lives.”

544-0542 or 1-800-549-5920 GOODWILL INDUSTRIES, SAN LUIS OBISPO 880 Industrial Way, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401



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The Frank family: Fred, Andrew, Pat, Olivia, Auraly and Craig

Atascadero, sent out glowing circulars expounding on the visionary new colony he’d established on the central coast of California. In fact, E.G. Lewis himself greeted Fred Frank, Sr. at the train station when he arrived from Wood Lake, Minnesota in 1921. Seven years later, in 1928, Wanda arrived in Atascadero from her native state of Kansas, to stay with an aunt who had settled here in 1915. She would meet and marry the popular town bachelor Fred Frank in 1932. Frederick Frank was the youngest of 14 children (!) born and raised on a homestead farm in Wood Lake, Minnesota. After he moved to Atascadero, Fred’s first job was driving a tractor in the fruit orchards that E.G. Lewis had planted here. The Franks planted wheat and farmed pear trees and did well with those crops. But during the Great Depression, the Franks fell on the same hard times that their neighbors did and Fred resorted to farming for other people (then known as sharecropping), even door-to-door sales, to make ends meet. When President Roosevelt started the Works Progress Administration in the mid-1930s, Fred went to work for the WPA, building roads and paving the way for a job he took later, when he went to work for the county roads department. In 1941, Fred was named superintendent of roads for district five, and held this position until his retirement in 1961. He also served the county as a volunteer firefighter during the 1920s, and was honorary chief for most of that time. Among his many contributions, Fred had a hand in starting a local credit union and the local golf course, which is marked today by the Rancho T Motel in downtown Atascadero (next to the Galaxy Theater). When Wanda arrived in Atascadero, she went to work for the Atascadero Development Syndicate, the entity that served as the administrative body for the not-yet-incorporated city. She would later work at the Moran School for Boys, become a member of the Red Cross Gray Ladies at Camp Roberts, and serve on the county elections board for 30 years. She and Fred were married in 1932, and they had their only son, Franklin “Freddie” in 1936. That same year, they bought 10 acres on the land where the tree farm is today, adding to it over the years. An insightful purchase, the land is blessed with a perennial creek where steelhead trout once thrived. During World War II, the Franks built cottage-style apartments on a portion of their farm to house the officers stationed at Camp Roberts. Those apartments still stand, though they have been renovated several times. Among his many talents, Fred Sr. played the banjo and sang at the local grange hall. He was a very active member of the Lutheran Church and of the local Lion’s Club. Wanda was well known for her frugal money-



but also worked for the county for more than three decades. He has been a truck driver, a foreman, a logging inspector, a forest ranger, and served as County Fire Chief and CDF Fire Chief simultaneously. And he was a farmer. Fred Jr. met his wife, Pat, at what was then known as San Luis Junior College (Cuesta’s forerunner) and married her in 1957. The newlyweds made their home first in Atascadero, then moved to Humboldt while Fred finished up his degree. Fred’s career required several moves; they lived in Monterey, Santa Rosa, San Jose, Davis, San Andreas and San Luis Obispo before returning to Atascadero. Pat would later return to college, where she earned her degree in Natural Resources in 1980 from Columbia Community College.

Fred Senior and Wanda

management skills, her service on the grand jury and with the Red Cross, her famous and frequent cookie-baking, and warm, welcoming ways. Fred and Wanda Frank achieved the status of “royalty” when they were named king and queen of Colony Days in 1982. Following in his father’s footsteps, Franklin (who goes by Fred today) first earned his degree in Forest Management from Humboldt State University before returning home to continue his work as a fireman for the California Department of Forestry, a job he had been doing during the summers. While in college, Fred worked as a psychiatric technician at Atascadero State Hospital. His own career has been every bit as storied as his father’s: Like his dad, Fred not only served as a firefighter,

Fred and Pat had two children, Greg (born in 1958) and Auraly (born in 1962). In 1959, Fred convinced his parents to start growing Christmas trees and planted the first of them on a small section of the family farm. Wherever they were living, the Frank family spent weekends in Atascadero, planting, weeding, laying in pipes for irrigation, and cultivating the forest that would become the magical holiday tree farm beloved by local families for the last 50 years. Greg and Auraly didn’t much like giving up some of their teenage social lives to the weekend tree farm tasks, but they were critical to the dream. By 1961 (the year Fred Sr. retired), the trees were growing up, and the following year, 1962, Hidden Springs Tree Farm opened for business. Now the trees occupy a 10-acre space on the 55-acre property, supporting 8 varieties of every size—from the feathery Monterey Pine to the fragrant Cedar; from the shapely Redwood to the elegant Douglas and White Firs. This year, they’ll celebrate their 50th anniversary, welcoming both new and loyal repeat customers. “Coming here is an annual tradition for families,” said Fred. “It’s an old-fashioned experience that began back when people used to go into the forest with an axe and chop down their own holiday tree. Only now we’re proud to say we run a completely sustainable operation.”

Fred, 10, with his pet deer

Green is more than just the dominant color at Hidden Springs. It’s also green in the environmentally conscious sense. The Franks plant two new replacement trees for every one that’s mature this year and gets chosen by a customer to take home for the holidays. In fact, The Land Conservancy entered into an agreement with the Frank Family that will preserve and protect the acreage from development or degradation and ensure that the tree farm and small organic garden on the site will continue to employ environmentally sound practices in perpetuity.

One of the regular hikers in the Tree Farm

When Auraly Frank earned her degree in Recreation Admin from Cal Poly, she returned to the family farm and is slowly taking the reins of the family business so that her parents can retire one day. Tragedy struck in 2009, when Greg Frank died far too soon at the age of 51. Auraly married Craig Dobbs in 1989 and they have two children, Andrew (21) and Olivia (18). Andrew is earning his degree in Forestry from Humboldt State, and is the fourth generation of Franks to work the family farm, along with his sister Olivia who is a student at UC Davis. As the Frank family prepares their secret recipe of hot spiced cider to serve alongside roasted chestnuts fresh from the tree, Fred Frank is reminded of the old-fashioned principles that guided his parents while he was growing up. “My mother was not religious in the traditional sense,” he said. “But she was a true Christian; a real idealist. She always believed in treating people the way she would want to be treated. … When my parents died, we discovered many I.O.U.’s amounting to thousands of dollars they had lent out to those in need, that were never repaid.” Like his father before him, Franklin Frederick Frank says he believes in doing things that will benefit others. And he’d like to see the family farm continued, handed down to Andrew and Olivia, and from them to their children … There is something about the holidays, something sweet, something nostalgic, something precious. And no matter how we celebrate them, the traditions we embrace ensure they will endure. The Frank family understands this, and their Hidden Springs Tree Farm contributes to the best of them.



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PEOPLE are fun to watch, and, unlike other owls or hawks, barn owls aren’t territorial: they don’t mind living in close proximity to humans or other birds.

glenn prichard nature’s remedy

Back in California, on his trips to the construction sites on the Central Coast and inland, Glenn began to notice abandoned owls’ nesting boxes. Underneath, he’d find broken owl eggs and dead owlets. “There must’ve been a handyman here who made these boxes,” Glenn comments. They were wellbuilt, but, apparently, people who put them up hadn’t realized that a box can be a home for an owl only if it’s properly maintained. It’s equally important to know where exactly and how these boxes should be installed. Unintentionally, many bird lovers lost their barn owls simply because the owls’ nesting houses became too old and dingy.

By Natasha Dalton


ntil recently Glenn Prichard had the typical fast-paced life of a successful urbanite. This California native has always “worked for himself,” starting over three decades ago with physical labor in the construction business and then moving on to consulting. During the housing boom he was “right in the middle of it,” overseeing multiple development sites. Then the market crashed, and all construction, even in denselypopulated Southern California where Glenn lived, came to a halt.

Part of Glenn’s job included dealing with banks and disbursing funds to contractors. Allocation of hundreds of millions of dollars hinged on Glenn’s understanding of the project’s demands and his ability to coordinate the work. As a break from such a high-stakes job, Glenn began to volunteer for an animal sanctuary in Lockwood Valley, near Bakersfield—and found his interactions with animals to be relaxing and inspiring. With a group of other volunteers he was involved in a rescue of wolf-dogs from Alaska, working on the receiving end of the operation which brought these animals to California. American wolves’ survival chances plummeted when landowners were allowed to benefit financially from blaming wolves for harming domestic animals. And as if a “shoot-onsight” policy that made it happen, and aerial recreational hunting weren’t destructive enough, many states now introduced trapping and poisoning “of the babies in the dens.” “It’s a sad situation,” Glenn says. “I understand that wolves shouldn’t run amok. But as an animal lover, I find it hard to accept policies that ‘manage’ these magnificent, intelligent creatures into extinction. There must be a balance here.” Traveling around the country, Glenn saw first-hand how easily wildlife can be affected by humans—and was upset when he noticed needless animal loss. Glenn has never been the kind of a guy who’d just sit and complain. The desire to educate people about wildlife prompted him to join D E C E M B E R


the board of the Education Research Center in Winchester, Idaho. “I’ve always been into animals,” he says. “Babies and animals—I always want to look after them. The rest of us can take care of ourselves.” It was at the Research Center where Glenn learned about the plight of another American icon—the barn owl. Owls are interesting creatures. They are the best rodent hunters known to man. A single owl family can keep under control up to twenty acres of land, clearing it of mice, gophers and snakes. They’re tireless and relentless flying machines who are remarkably ravenous for their size (a grown-up owl weighs just about one pound). There’s no such thing as ‘No, thanks,’ when it comes to the amount of food they can eat. But there’re times when these swift hunters become vulnerable. Many of them die simply because they don’t build nests. They make homes in tree holes, or in darker corners of old barns— anywhere where they can find a narrow tunnel— and a high number of babies fall prey to bigger predators: horned owls and prairie falcons. Parents face danger, too. After the babies are hatched, dad has to leave the nest: his job is to provide food. But barn owls cannot hunt in bad weather: they’re relatively small and light and when their feathers get damp they become too heavy for flying. If dad cannot hunt for a while or gets killed, the whole family starves to death—since mother never leaves the nest for fear of letting it go cold. “There’s a huge following of people who love barn owls,” Glenn discovered. Owls

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But the greatest danger to barn owls comes from landowners who bait rodents with poison. “People are concerned about the environment for a reason,” Glenn says. “Many now realize that poison isn’t the optimal substance against pests.” An unintended consequence of using poison is that other animals and birds get harmed by it, and these animals, in turn, become the source of secondary poisoning for pets and humans. Luckily, in the case of barn owls, it really is “if you build it, they’ll come.” “You can easily rebuild your barn owl population,” Glenn says. “Once established, an owl’s family creates a self-perpetuating system, and the birds continue to inhabit breeding sites for generations.” Of course, this doesn’t happen overnight. The rodents are always reproducing, too, and sometimes people get impatient and revert to poisons. “They’re not thinking that when they use their poisons against rodents, the barn owls that live there also get poisoned. It defeats the purpose,” Glenn laments. “It’s also dangerous when people next-door use poison: then those who want to do the right thing and support barn owls, see their birds fly over, pick up something that died there, and die too.” So, looking for the new source of income that would also support the wildlife, Glenn came up with a unique business idea: He’d start a human- and animal-friendly rodent control program, which would work by attracting barn owls to the farms and vineyards. It took two years of research and “testing the waters” before he felt comfortable about plunging into his new venture.



just supply and install owls’ boxes, he also offers full maintenance. Right now his company Nature’s Remedy offers two types of nesting boxes: wooden and plastic. While still in Santa Clarita, Glenn employed several veterans to manufacture those boxes, and is hoping to find a few local veterans interested in taking over this part of the job. “It’s good for them—my Vietnam veterans liked being involved in something that’s worth doing,” Glenn says. He has two business-related Facebook pages, one for Nature’s Remedy, and another one for Preservation Education, which educate people about secondary poisoning.

Baby Owl

“I started doing it part-time when I still lived in Santa Clarita Valley,” Glenn says. He made fifteen boxes to begin with, and offered them to the farmers near the construction sites where he worked. To his delight, he found quite a few people willing to try his method. “There’re still areas, even in California, where animals are just tools,” Glenn says. And while in those places his proposals were met with indifference and skepticism, the Central Coast and Napa Valley’s residents loved Glenn’s ideas. Many were happy to find out that they could fight rodents and have the benefit of attracting remarkable birds to their properties.

“Golf course keepers, bird-watchers, farmers, photographers—many owl lovers welcomed me,” Glenn says. “And I like to help them out. Last night I was out in a vineyard until sunset: it’s so pretty here! I love it! Owls, wolves—they’re a part of our world; we’ve got to have them.” “You want to have more reason for what you’re doing besides just making money,” Glenn adds. “Staying in touch with nature lets you get more out of life.” Next time you’re driving on the country roads, take a closer look and you might

Owl house in the vineyard

notice Glenn’s nesting boxes. He’s pretty optimistic about the future, and is already contemplating the next step toward greater protection of the barn owls. “People are into animals around here,” Glenn says. “I hope to create a barn owl trust, like the kind they have in the UK.” Protecting owls is a world-wide movement; they help us, and we can—and should—help them in return. To learn more, go to

Their enthusiasm sealed the deal for Glenn, and in September he and his wife moved to Paso Robles. Glenn advises people who are interested in attracting owls to their yards to install boxes in pairs—so that the dad has a safe place to stay in any weather. Glenn doesn’t

Soaring Barn Owl D E C E M B E R


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HOME/OUTDOOR huttle up

The Christmas radio By Bob Huttle

“Remembrance of things past.” —William Shakespeare ‘Tis the holiday season. We here on the Central Coast are blessed with myriad activities and opportunities which put us in the proper spirit, usually in weather that much of the nation envies. Events are everywhere you turn. From the bright lights of the Mission Plaza carousel, Santa’s house, and Hanukkah candles, to festive parades on land and water, people everywhere sample the season. There’s ice skating, snow play, and carolers; craft fairs, a pink wonderland at the Madonna Inn, and the ethereal floating lights atop San Luis Mountain. If you enjoy holiday music, the sounds and sights never stop, with numerous Nutcracker ballets, The SLO Symphony and the Irish Tenors, the Vocal Arts Ensemble, and the Oceano Melodrama’s holiday extravaganza. Church and Temple services and programs abound. Toss in live theater with SLO Little Theater’s version of “It’s A Wonderful Life” and PCPA’s “The Wizard of Oz” and who has time to sleep? Higuera Street sparkles with white lights and local merchants ply their wares with a twinkle in their eyes. Families wander up and down streets in every town, stopping for coffee and hot chocolate. Special meals are a family tradition at places like The Apple Farm, Madonna Inn’s restaurant, and McLintock’s Dining House. Folks have stocked up on apple cider from See Canyon, standing rib roasts, hams, and turkeys from local grocers, Dungeness crab from Morro Bay, and wines from the over 200 wineries that dot our countryside. Really now, where would you rather be? Our bountiful blessings are abundant but we must keep in mind that many others, here and farther away, need our assistance. We have numerous opportunities to volunteer our time, money and resources. You can serve food at the homeless shelter or at churches, ring that bell for the Salvation Army, collect cans for the Food Bank and Toys for Tots, or donate to the Red Cross. Something happens to me between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Nostalgia makes an appearance and, to a child of the 1950s, this time of the year summons up glittering ghosts of Christmases past. If you, dear reader, grew up around that same era, perhaps you still can recall an occasion or an object that captured your fancy then—and still does now. For me, it was a radio. There was nothing especially remarkable about the look and feel of that Motorola AM transistor radio. It was rectangular, smaller than a deck of cards, made of cheap plastic, with bits of wire and rubber here and there. An assembly plant in Japan probably made millions of them for shipment around the world. On Christmas morning, 1956, I unwrapped one of those beauties from under my Christmas tree. A tag said “Merry Christmas” from Santa to 7-year-old Bobby. That radio soon became my ticket to other worlds. Every Christmas Eve thereafter, from the time I was 8 until maybe 12, I played that radio through the holy hours. Scanning the starry-cold D E C E M B E R


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sky for Santa, too fidgety and excited to sleep, I listened to Christmas carols deep into the night, the tinny speaker softly harking Herald Angels through my pillow. I’m certain I heard Bing Crosby sing “White Christmas” for the first time and, in the darkness, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Mitch Miller, Tchaikovsky, and others made their annual pilgrimage to my room. To this day, I trace my love of Christmas music to those years when that little radio broke the silence and delivered me into the waiting, warm arms of my favorite holiday. If Christmas Eve was a time for me to listen in clandestine pleasure to my radio, the summer was when the volume increased and baseball filled the airwaves. School was out and I could stay up later at night without having to try to fool my parents into thinking I was asleep. A night didn’t pass without me listening to the Padres games on KOGO Radio 600, but when the Dodgers were in town, the voice of Vin Scully on KABC, Radio 790, painted incomparable word pictures. He still does so today. There were times when I’d lie on my bed in my darkened bedroom, the radio blaring balls and strikes, when I’d suddenly shout loudly enough to bring my mother running, wondering what mischief I was up to NOW. I always blamed that radio, which connected me to baseball forever. My radio also introduced me to rock and roll music. The first time I ever heard the Beatles sing “I Want to Hold Your Hand” their voices harmonized through the microscopic tweeter and non-existent woofer of my Motorola transistor. My radio was my ticket to imaginary concerts everywhere. I eventually became a musician myself and my band recorded a song which a local radio station played on the air. Imagine my delight and pride when I heard it on that radio. My radio brought me the news that author Ernest Hemingway had died. Years later, I would teach his great novel, “The Old Man and the Sea” to my ninth graders. I remember hearing about a Russian space satellite named Sputnik and I took the radio to school so I wouldn’t miss a tense moment of the worsening Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. And at the end of that awful November day in 1963, after the TV had been turned off and my family had finally gone to bed, I listened to my radio into the early morning hours, as the shocked and saddened news announcer tried to help me somehow understand the enormity of President Kennedy’s assassination. I probably stopped listening to that radio when I bought my first GE hi-fi stereo phonograph player and record albums became my obsession. From then on, the only time I paid attention to a radio was in the car or—for old time’s sake—on that winter’s eve each year when carols were sung just for me or on a summer’s sultry night, when the crack of the bat and Vinny’s voice sounded best on a cheap radio from Santa.



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Sexual assault victim education, Inc. (S.A.V.E.) goodbye to its founder, Bobbie Loomis By Ynana Zovich, President, S.A.V.E.


obbie Loomis, S.A.V.E.’s guiding force for 30 years, has retired. Those remaining on the Board of Directors are sad to lose her, but supportive of her need to focus on her family and larger life.

S.A.V.E.’s Mission Statement is the following: “To develop public awareness information and raise funds to implement educational programs to help reduce the incidence of sexual assault and molestation of children.” Simply put, we raise funds to educate the public about the incidence of sexual abuse in our comBobbie Loomis munity, and prevent abuse from occurring by providing an educational curriculum called “Talking About Touching” free of charge to any interested preschool in the county. Bobbie began her service to the group that would become S.A.V.E. in 1982. She attended a gathering of local citizens in a friend’s home, and the information that was presented regarding the sexual abuse of young children in our community was so shocking that Bobbie agreed to help. S.A.V.E. began its mission of educating young children and their families about the prevention of sexual abuse that year. In 1985, Bobbie introduced an educational program to local preschools. Eventually, the curriculum became what we provide to preschools today,

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S.A.V.E. Board of Directors and Friends

Committee for Children’s “Talking About Touching” personal safety program. Currently S.A.V.E. serves 66 preschools in SLO County. A non-profit’s fundraising work is constant. Bobbie has guided the S.A.V.E. Board through many fundraising events, including a circus, casual barbecues, elegant brunches, formal dinners, a cooking class, gift wrapping, and many more. She has also been instrumental in securing many private grants. As Education Coordinator, she established the current system of employing a part-time person to deliver our curriculum to interested preschools, train them in its implementation, and follow up with them every year. Serving on the S.A.V.E. Board has never been about glamour or even popularity in the world of non-profits. Most people would rather think about anything else than the sexual abuse of young children. However, Bobbie has chosen to spend 30 years of her life dedicated to this cause because she believes that she can make a difference. In Bobbie’s History of Sexual Assault Victim Education, Inc. (2003) she writes, “Child sexual abuse cuts across all socio-economic groups. Fathers, stepfathers, and live-in boyfriends do it. But so do mothers. Babysitters, teachers, and coaches do it, and so do priests and ministers. Grandpas, uncles, cousins do it. So do older children. There will never be an end to this insidious crime, but SAVE can make a difference.” Without Bobbie’s efforts of the past 30 years, there would likely be no S.A.V.E. While many of the teachers at the preschools, the parents and the children that have benefited from our curriculum may not know her personally, I know that they are thankful to her mission of teaching them about how to prevent abuse. The S.A.V.E. Board members will miss her wisdom, experience, faith and determination. I will personally miss her calm and ladylike composure in the face of the various crises that can befall non-profits in their efforts to raise funds and create a visible presence in their community. When I first called S.A.V.E. to inquire about their work, she warmly invited me to a Board meeting. When I showed up, she welcomed me with a hug. Asked about her motivation for this work, she says, “I really believe that anything you can do to prevent bad things from happening is time well spent. An elderly gentleman told me many years ago, ‘You never stand as tall as when you stoop to help a child.’ I have prayed about my work with S.A.V.E. many times. There are so many ramifications of abuse. I have been doing what I thought the Lord wanted me to do. He put it in my way, and I had to listen.” She leaves us with her words, “Thank you to all you past Board members for all your great support over all these years. I want to encourage current and future Board members to carry on.” Bobbie, we will.

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Charles and Ray Duncan

Ranchers for peace By Ruth Starr


f you want peace, work for justice.” That’s what the bumper sticker said on a car traveling in front of Charles and daughter Rachel (Ray) Duncan on a recent day in San Luis Obispo. A reminder, says Charles, that peace, like happiness, is not something that can be directly invoked, but instead is a by-product that only arises in the presence of other favorable conditions. Together, Charles and Ray have formed a dynamic musical duo called “Ranchers for Peace.” Although neither are involved in raising livestock or ranching, they chose this moniker to express that they are working for peace just as a rancher works the land. The name Ranchers for Peace actually goes back to the 1980s. It was a headline in the New York Times about cowboys from Montana and Wyoming who went to Moscow to meet with Russian cowboys to discuss international peace. Charles thought it was ironic to use the name even though it had nothing to do with them. However, their mission is to advocate for such conditions, and to join their music with the



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long tradition of folksingers, bards, and troubadours who have done the same. A native of Bakersfield, Charles has been in the field of music since the early seventies. He eventually moved to Los Angeles where he played with bands and had solo jobs performing. Soon he was writing his own songs with the idea to create male and female parts to perform together as a vehicle for social comment. Charles continued his career in music and settled in Cambria where he married a fellow musician Jude Johnstone and together they have two daughters, Emma and Rachel. When Ray was about 10 years old, she began listening to some of Charles’ music cassettes. She liked the music and began learning the songs. But it wasn’t until 2011 when Ray and Charles kicked around the idea of performing Charles’ songs together. In time, Ray realized her musical talents and with her father, she has blossomed in her own right as a performer. Ray has a strong depth to her vocals and presents her lyrics in a convincing, heartfelt manner. Her mother Jude is an established singer songwriter who has worked with some of the most well-known acts in the industry. Jude’s songs have been covered by Trisha Yearwood, Jackson Browne and a host of other performers. Now following in her footsteps, Ray is trying her hand at songwriting as well. Ray’s own brand of music is outside the scope of Ranchers for Peace. However, she is happy to perform in a variety of genres. Locally, Charles and Ray have found a loyal following. They have recently expanded their gigs to out of the area. When they are in town, Ranchers for Peace can be seen at one of the many Songwriter’s Showcase nights such as Kruezberg Cafe, the Steynberg Gallery, or a host of other performance venues. They recently released their first CD, “Tell All the World.” Following in the tradition of folk singing, Ranchers for Peace connects to America’s aging hippies. Many of Ray’s youthful peers think it is really “cool” music. Charles calls it social, political music. He feels that young people from fifteen to thirty are not as engaged in social questions as they could be. What Charles wants to accomplish is to make it important for young people to care about what’s going on in the world at large. “Music is fanning the flame—it is being a part of helping folks to awaken compassion inside,” explains Charles. To find upcoming gigs and check out their music, log onto www.

Celebrating 20 Years Celebrating 20 years of a work-free smoke place environment, Doug Shaw has loved every minute of owning The Sanctuary Tobacco Shop since he took over the existing cigar shop in 1992. Having a passion for collecting pipes and smoking cigars from a young age, Shaw says that the cigar shop has indeed become the sanctuary of many regular customers since it is the only place you can smoke in Downtown SLO. Customers are able to enjoy their cigars inside the store in an upstairs lounge area. Aside from regulars, Shaw often sells to tourists who want to take a break from traveling.

“When customers come in they can expect to meet the epitome of the happiest guy in San Luis Obispo.” – Doug Shaw

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at the market Fresh cranberry orange bread By Sarah Hedger


ecember brings a number of things with it, including a whole lot of fun, holiday eating and cooking traditions. While it is also the wrap up of yet another year, and, I do my best to refrain from asking where the year went (again), there is plenty to enjoy with cooking traditions and the ingredients we have to choose from. December is probably one of the most traditionally entrenched months, with an amazing variety of celebratory food happenings taking place. Food is, for the most part, a universal commodity, that does a great job uniting people, especially in the kitchen (and dining room). Aside from the smell of the mountains each Christmas tree brings with it, or the fresh baked treat smell that emanates from ovens throughout town, we are still graced with an abundance of variety at our local farmers’ markets for all the delicious food celebrations. Whether it is the dark, hearty greens of chard and kale, or winter squashes and hearty potatoes, it is always a great sight to see the variety of late apples, early oranges, as well as pomegranates and persimmons. Needless, to say, looking at the markets, there is a good chance there is enough variety to sustain us through Winter. While many have their favorite family recipes that help with the Christmas spirit, it is fun to learn what different traditions bring to different households. It always amazes me to learn the cooking traditions that continue, not only for decades, but generations, and the loyalty each recipe conjures to survive, near its original form, for generations. Each year, my mom and I come up with new treats to grace our December bake-off. While we do a good job of coming up with some new ones (making marshmallows for the first time was an amazing discovery of delicious-



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ness), there have always been a few stand-bys that remain close to the original version because they are, on their own, our taste of the holidays. This recipe, Fresh Cranberry Orange Bread, is one of those stand-bys that has stood the test of time. I remember my mom baking it for as long as I can remember eating. And, for me, it reminds me of this celebratory time of year. The time of year when we relax a bit more in the time department, eat our meals a little more slowly (hopefully), and bake (and eat) more than any other time of the year. With this bread, there is something special about the combination of fresh cranberries and fresh oranges. With that, one can almost rationalize a notable amount of Vitamin C in this bread with all the tart Winter fruits. Try to get your hands on the freshest cranberries you can find, as well as some good, local, organic oranges. We have many oranges to choose from in this area! This bread is simple, beautiful, and zaps the taste buds in all the right places as it has a wonderful fresh flavor. Do not think about using anything else aside from fresh oranges for the zest or juice! I usually take the zest from one orange and if you are lucky to find some real good juicy oranges, it will only take a couple to make the 3/4 cup fresh juice you will need. I will resist calling it a fruit cake bread; but there is heaps of fruit in it. Make it for yourself and watch how quickly it disappears! And, Happy Holidays!

fresh cranberry orange bread 2 cups flour (or 2 Ÿ cups gluten free flour mix for a gluten free option) 1 cup sugar 1/2 tsp baking soda 1 1/2 tsp baking powder ½ tsp salt 1/4 cup unsalted butter 1 free range egg, beaten 1 Tablespoon fresh orange zest (use a zester or microplane to make this easy) 3/4 cup fresh orange juice 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, finely chopped (in food processor works best) 1 1/2 cups light raisins Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper (or lightly oil/butter). Stir flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in large bowl. Cut in butter and mash into flour mixture with a fork, until thoroughly incorporated resembling coarse meal. Add egg, orange zest, and orange juice and mix well. Fold in chopped fresh cranberries and raisins. Pour dough into prepared loaf tin and bake for 1 hour. Bread is done when golden on top and toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean (with no doughy bits attached). Cool on wire rack and enjoy. This is a moist bread and can easily last for a day or two, if needed. Sprinkle with powdered sugar for the holiday look. Makes 1 standard loaf. Number of servings depends on how you slice it! *Feel free to email me at if you have any food-related questions and find this recipe (as well as other versions) at



slo county art scene tony girolo: the art of returning By Gordon Fuglie


or those embarking upon the artistic quest, it seems that, more often than not, the journey is accompanied by intervals of anxiety. Surely, artists expect hard work and barriers to break, but progress is assumed. Worry and insecurity, however, are less easy to shake or assuage, and most artists struggle solitarily with their bouts of psychic unease.

A few years back, I curated an exhibition of a well-regarded and collected Southern California artist. We structured the project as a mid-career summation, planned an ambitious catalog, and displayed the exhibition in an important regional art museum. While I was thrilled with the high attendance and press



reviews garnered during the exhibition, my artist friend grew increasingly disconsolate as it drew to a close. Fearful that new inspiration would not be forthcoming, he closed his LA studio and retreated to his home in the San Bernardino Mountains, a virtual recluse. I thought of my friend recently during a visit with Tony Girolo, a young artist who lives and teaches in San Luis Obispo. Raised on the Central Coast, Tony attended San Luis Obispo High School where he took art classes and felt the first stirrings of his vocation. Just as he was finding art as a personal necessity, his family relocated to Geneva, Switzerland. He was a proverbial provincial in an international city, and the cultural

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abundance of Europe hit Girolo like a tidal wave. He loved it. It was his return to SLO, however, that posed a problem. Our beloved SLO “paradise” seemed a bit of a retraction after his experience in Switzerland. Graduating from high school, Girolo set out again, enrolling at San Francisco State to study art. Again, he loved it—especially the hilly ter-



Carving out his art career in SLO has taken time, interfering with his art making for the time being. But Girolo, who recently turned 30, has found a silver lining. Teaching basic art courses in a variety of settings, and to people from all walks of life, has helped him to purge himself of the narrow dogmatism that fed an unhealthy insistence on what art ought to be—a holdover from graduate school. In art, a return to more humble practice often provides just the right grounding for new beginnings. Back to my Southern California artist friend: After four years of rethinking his life and art, he burst back onto the LA art scene with a whole new body of work and a new direction. It makes one think; isn’t a comeback also one of life’s many returns?

rain which afforded opportunities for some really gnarly skateboarding. Encountering the drawings and paintings of James Weeks (1922 – 1998), a key figure in the Bay Area Figurative School, confirmed an abiding influence on Girolo. San Francisco also sparked the young artist’s budding intellectualism. He became a habitué of City Lights Bookstore, and avid for poetry, tried his hand at verse. But dormitory life proved too impersonal for Girolo and he transferred to St. Mary’s College in Maryland, where the figurative painter Jeffrey Carr became his first mentor. Anxious for wider horizons, Girolo did a session at the International School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture in Italy. An artist of a self-nurturing and non-competitive temperament, he was dismayed by the “humiliating critiques” in the classes. Returning to the U.S., Carr helped Girolo gain admission to the prestigious Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia where he lived for four years, maintaining a studio on his roof—convenient for painting city views. He was awarded the MFA in 2006, but again had to endure stressful critique sessions at the competitive Academy. Despite the pressure, Girolo found his own style: a restricted palette and a minimalist representational mode inspired by the early works of Richard Diebenkorn (1922 – 1993), Arshile Gorky (1904 – 1948) and Willem DeKooning (1904 – 1997), as well as the compositional stringency of the Italian modernist Giorgio Morandi (1890 – 1964). Determined to make it as a practicing artist, Girolo came back to the West Coast, settling in Portland. But working a day job in restaurants absorbed this precious studio time, and he returned to Philadelphia in hopes of finding a job teaching art. Girolo had just started to gain a foothold in the Philadelphia art scene when the recession hit in 2008 and he lost his teaching position. This prompted him to once again return to the Central Coast where he has since held a number of art positions: teaching at Cuesta and Alan Hancock Colleges, the SLO Adult School, and the art component of the Restorative Partners program at Juvenile Hall. Girolo has also worked as the exhibitions preparator for the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art and conducts private art lessons. D E C E M B E R


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the december dilemma: religion in public schools By Dr. Julian Crocker, County Superintendent of Schools


ach year at this time, schools often find themselves between the proverbial “rock and a hard place.” This happens because it is during the December holidays when the issue of religious expression in public schools becomes visible. Questions about the use of sacred music and religious symbols and decorations in the classroom put the matter of “separation of church and state” before us again. The dilemma in which schools are placed is trying to balance the appropriate recognition of religion in American life and society with the clear obligation not to encourage or sponsor a particular religious belief. My experience is that the public is also confused about how to deal with religion in public schools. There are usually very strong opinions on both sides of this issue.

courts, so we are not completely in the dark about how to deal with this issue. But it still evokes strong feelings at this time of the year. The basis of the dilemma is the interpretation of that portion of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which states: “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Within these few words are contained two very powerful concepts, separated by only a comma. On the one hand is the prohibition against the state (i.e. government) establishing or supporting religious belief or practices. This is referred to as the “establishment” clause. On the other hand is the “free exercise” clause which guarantees religious freedom of American citizens, including students in public schools.

There has been much written and decided on this issue by constitutional scholars and the

This is not the place to review all the legal opinions on this issue, so here are some general guidelines which hopefully will allow these two equally important freedoms to live peacefully together in our schools. 1. Religion is a personal matter and individual students are free to express their religious beliefs in school as long as it does not interfere with other students, or with the instructional program. One observer noted that as long as there are Algebra tests there will be prayer in school! 2. Religion is too important in our history and heritage for us to keep it out of our schools, but it should be addressed within the context of the instructional program. This is the classic

rule to study “about” religion, not to promote a particular religious viewpoint in school. 3. Students are captive audiences. They are required by law to attend school. Therefore, schools need to be very sensitive to practices that may offend students whose families may hold religious beliefs that are not shared by the majority. Just because no one complains, does not give schools the right to become overly involved in religious practices. Students should not be made to feel like an outsider based on religious preferences. 4. Songs, symbols and practices, which clearly have a religious purpose, are not appropriate as stand-alone activities in schools. It is possible for schools to address these, but as part of the curriculum with a specific instructional purpose. There are some accepted legal “tests” to guide us in this area. Schools should include a study of a variety of holidays and religious traditions throughout the year and not just in December. 5. Schools should remember that even though symbols such as Santa Claus and trees have become very commercialized, many non-Christian parents and students could see these as religious in nature. The best solution is for schools to remember their educational role and to provide secular instruction about religious traditions and not appear to advocate a particular religion. 6. It is very appropriate for our public schools to teach values such as respect, honesty, caring, the value of hard work and responsibility. Just because public schools may not promote religion, we certainly should be teaching the core values of our American society. In actual practice, this December dilemma is usually handled in our schools without problems. But we need to remember that when government and religion occupy the same room, the space between the rock and the hard place can become very narrow.

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Business interview


the man who saw the light

john vincent of cc laser hair therapy in slo explains why he is committed to laser therapy


ohn Vincent has been in the hair restoration field for 28 years. During this time, he has been closely involved in all aspects of hair loss solutions, including hair pieces and wigs, which is where he started, as well as an educator and patient spokesperson for one of the top hair transplant groups in the nation. Most recently, John has focused on the field of laser hair therapy. Since 2007, he currently operates Central California Laser Hair Therapy in San Luis Obispo with his business partner, Dermatologist Dr. Bradley Kurgis. He is co-owner of the personal laser device and hair products company, Nutreve International™, and directs global sales and education for the LaserCap™ Company. The following is an excerpt from an interview with John by the National Hair Journal©. NHJ: You have a background in both medical and non-medical hair restoration procedures, but you evolved into an authority in the world of low-level laser light therapy (LHT). Why?

John Vincent: An important part of medical hair management is preserving and improving thinning hair. Hair transplants for men are not a quick fix and many people don’t want to take drugs to combat hair loss. Low level laser light therapy is a way to strengthen and maintain the hair that you have, particularly as you age. Women are a big part of the thinning population. 25% of women see their hair quality and density decline over their 30s, 40s, 50s, and so on. LHT has proven to be the most effective way of restoring the quality and thickness of hair in these women. Another reason we see so many female patients is that hair is such an important part of a woman’s feeling self esteem. Men can accept baldness-shave their heads, even. Women don’t have that option. LHT is a safe and effect way to reverse thinning hair—without risk. Understanding the cyclical nature of hair growth helps our patients understand how hair deteriorates, and how it can be helped by the healing energy of LHT. It’s an extremely effective anti-aging treatment for the hair.

NHJ: The acceptance of low level laser light therapy wasn’t an instant success. There was a period when there was a lot of skepticism. But today many doctors’ clinics around the country offer light therapy as a normal part of medical hair management. John V: You’re absolutely right. Many doctors looked upon the early claims of LHT devices with a jaundiced eye. Fortunately for everyone, a few leading medical pioneers in the field of light therapy took a closer look at these machines and started experimenting with them to see what they would do. And, lo and behold, they found that light therapy could help their patients in a way nothing else could. Now we have the internet, where more than 2000 articles are available on LHT and personal experience stories proliferate. NHJ: The technology evolved to meet the market’s needs, right? John V: That’s exactly what happened. At our clinic we carry all laser product options and hair support products. There are clinical machines, the budget priced Nutreve Personal Hair Therapy Laser™ at $499, and the LaserCap™. Many of our patients start with a treatment program using our clinical machines and then switch to home treatment with their own device. NHJ: What is the LaserCap™? John V: The LaserCap™ is a very sophisticated device containing 224 acutal laser diodes in a structure invented by the company founder, Dr. Michael Rabin with the help a Harvard photo-medicine professor, Dr. Michael Hamblin and MIT engineer, David Smith. It has gained worldwide attention for its unique design. Dr. Rabin got me involved in the international introduction of the LaserCap™ and has made me Director of Global Affiliate Physican Sales and Education. My team of caring, educated professionals consults with doctors and patients from all over the world from our office here in SLO. NHJ: A lot of people don’t know what the laser cap is. Is it a baseball cap? Is it a hard hat? Describe the characteristics.

John V: The LaserCap™ is a structure that contains 224 semiconductor lasers that fits inside of any kind of hat. If you don’t like the caps that come with it, you can put it in your favorite ball cap, cowboy hat, or for ladies, under any head covering. NHJ: Is it expensive? John V: The LaserCap sells for $3000. When you consider what multiple hair surgeries cost, or a lifetime drug regimen expense, it really makes financial sense. It operates from a small battery pack that you wear or put in your pocket. You can take what is essentially a clinical laser treatment with you anywhere in the world. You need only recharge it at night on a wall charger. NHJ: You talked earlier about people doing their research online and coming to you already pre-educated. Where can they get accurate and reliable information? John V: There’s just no shortage of technical information on the Internet On my website,, I let my patients do the talking. My patient results photos are compelling and our patient videos speak “from the heart.” I think that is more credible than any kind of commercial message. NHJ: If somebody wanted your advice, how would they reach you? John V: My e-mail address is I have a toll free number, 800-NowHair (local is 805-597-3004). We offer a full scalp examination with macrophotography, hair density gauges and video microscope to help the prospective patient understand what condition his or her hair is in. We monitor our patients’ progress on a regular basis.



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nick yost Packer Extraordinaire By Taylor Coffman


ANUARY 1, 1940, was a Monday. And thus Nickolas Yost’s new job, along with a hopeful new decade, began on Tuesday that year. Nick had been promoted by William Randolph Hearst to manage the San Simeon warehouses. There were five of those buildings next to the ocean, crammed with art objects and antiques. While working there in recent years, Nick had gained Hearst’s favor by becoming an expert packer. Many a precious item was to be handled, Hearst ordered, by no one but Nick Yost. Better known as Sandy, the new warehouse manager had recently turned 34. He brought youthful vigor to the job—a type A personality, as his daughter Sharon Vandercook of Cambria fondly recalls. Fast forward to December 1941. The day after Pearl Harbor, Sandy wired Hearst at Wyntoon in northern California, saying he needed lumber for more shelving at San Simeon. Did his request stem from the debacle in Hawaii? It’s hard to say. Sandy may simply have been starting the new week on his usual active note. All through the war he oversaw the warehouses. Hearst finally returned to San Simeon late in 1944. By then Sandy had packed the man’s Navajo blankets for the old Los Angeles Museum, a gift preceded by Hearst’s knowing comment that the blankets were “the best collection extant.” They were that indeed. Sandy also stayed sharp by shipping items from the Santa Monica Beach House to San Simeon and Wyntoon. This was in the mid-1940s. Hearst and Marion Davies would soon be selling that mansion west of Los Angeles, a showplace that in the 1930s had been their Southland equivalent of the more renowned estates farther north. Sandy was thereby equipped for a bigger task, starting in 1949. He compiled a master inventory of San Simeon—not only of the beachfront warehouses but also of the Enchanted Hill, where the mythical Castle stood. He began with Estate #1 “down below.” By the time he’d finished in 1950 within the Castle itself, his numbers reached the 6,000s. Pairs or sets of objects were often grouped as single entries. “Built-ins” (architectural items), plus all the books in the two libraries, were separately tallied. Up at Wyntoon, the Estate numbers ranged from the 8,000s to the 11,000s. Yost family, San Simeon, early 1940s D E C E M B E R


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Nick Yost, early 1940s

Besides taking stock of objects at San Simeon, Sandy listed names of rooms and, outdoors, names of areas that sometimes needed clarifying. The north side of Casa Grande (the main Castle) posed a challenge. Often called the Recreation Wing before the war, that imposing structure was renamed the New Wing by Sandy, a term used by the construction crew during Hearst’s final years at San Simeon. The New Wing long remained the name of choice. However, “North Wing” has since gained favor, despite the 1940s precedent. And yet when in Rome, do as the Romans do: Sandy’s “New Wing” may not be ideal, but it’s surely authentic, with much history on its side. After Mr. Hearst died in 1951, the warehouses still required full-time attention. They remained in Sandy’s devoted care. Meanwhile, the main warehouse in New York became a gold mine in the early 1950s for some of this country’s best museums. As the bounty dwindled, eyes were increasingly cast westward; this was shortly before the State of California acquired Hearst Castle in 1958, by gift of the Hearst Corporation. In 1956 a prime component of the Castle collection was sold to the Metropolitan Museum of Art—for its medieval branch called The Cloisters. Sandy Yost was the man of the hour, the one who prepared numerous Hispano-Moresque ceramics to be shipped to that facility, exceedingly valuable antiques that had once been in Hearst’s private Gothic Study in the Castle. The old plates and vases had to be packed with the utmost care. The treasures were taken to San Luis Obispo by Sandy’s assistant, Marguerite Brunner, and put on the train. Everything arrived in New York in perfect shape. James Rorimer, director of The Cloisters, had visited San Simeon in 1941 while Hearst was hunkered down at Wyntoon on the McCloud River; he’d been given a full tour of the Castle in its creator’s absence. Dr. Rorimer had never forgotten the rarities he’d seen. His museum’s acquisition of the Hispano-Moresque pottery was a major triumph. Sandy was 50 by 1956, the year of that special shipment. Related by marriage to the Plasketts of Big Sur’s South Coast, he had acreage


ber of the local school board, a hardworking pillar of the rural San Simeon community—and the trusted packer for the very particular W. R. Hearst. Marguerite Brunner, who’d completed The Cloisters shipment right after Sandy died, took over for him in the warehouses. Those buildings soon began yielding their treasures to architects, collectors, and art dealers, many of them people with Hearst family ties. Peggy Brunner stayed on until 1971. Hers was a fascinating job, always done with me-


thodical precision. Yet by rights that assignment should have been Nick Yost’s to carry out as elder statesman, until the warehouses were all but emptied, as still holds true of them today. NOTE: Taylor Coffman relied upon the personal archives of William R. Hearst III of San Francisco for this article. Photos provided by Sharon Yost Vandercook. Your comments or questions are welcome at

Rare Hispano-Moresque dish from the Hearst Collection

near Gorda. Sandy liked to drive up the coast from his family home in old San Simeon village and spend weekends working his land. He toyed with the idea of building a motel, even if tourism on Highway I was only seasonal back then. He’d had a heart attack, though, while still in his forties. He knew he had to be careful. While operating his tractor on the Gorda property in May 1956, he possibly suffered a second attack; so thinks his granddaughter Tina Humphrey. Sandy rolled over and was crushed by the heavy machine. His doctor was rock hunting that Saturday afternoon at nearby Jade Cove and somehow heard the news. He rushed to the scene, but it was too late. Sandy had died almost instantly. Life was never the same again for the Yost family. Sandy’s wife, Gladys, grieved throughout her long widowhood. He’d been a loving husband and father, a mem-

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history – Part 2

serra in san luis obispo Perseverance By Joseph A. Carotenuti


he unrelenting difficulties of establishing a new order in the unknown land of Alta California confronted both the secular and spiritual leaders in the latter part of the 18th century. A doggedness born of fidelity to the twin majesties of God and monarch sustained California’s earliest pioneers. Padre Serra was the first to admit his failings … but perseverance wasn’t one of them.

As 1776 approached, Serra was able to leave the southern missions after attending to the disaster in San Diego and the joy of founding Mission San Juan Capistrano. In what must have been an exhausting journey, the 62-year-old padre-presidente returned to San Carlos Borromeo Mission shortly after the new year. While there was a founding of that mission in Monterey at the presidio in 1770, its proximity to the soldiers convinced Serra to move his headquarters to its present location. Returning, he was able to remain closer to home for a few years, but both the growth of missions, padres, and neophytes also increased his responsibilities. He now was obligated to assume the role of a bishop. The story continues. For most of the mission’s spiritual obligations, a priest was able to perform the



necessary rites. However, for the sacrament of confirmation, a bishop was required. With the nearest one in Mexico, the authority to perform the service was granted to Serra as it had been in previous years to the Jesuit missionaries in Baja California. Once granted, Serra was obligated to visit each mission and confirm those ready. He kept his own journal of names and when he had concluded his obligation years later, there were 5309 entries. Returning to San Luis Obispo in March of 1782 for four days after a three year absence, Serra confirmed 148 neophytes. Undoubtedly, he was anxious to continue south to found the ninth—and his last—mission of San Buenaventura. The mission by the sea had its own drama beginning from the earliest efforts of the Franciscans in California. Originally, plans called for the establishment of three spiritual outposts. Beset by lack of supplies and priests, then government delays and changes, Serra’s efforts had been frustrated in founding a “middle” mission. In a series of convoluted evolutions, this mission’s birth waited for over 13 years. Not only was San Buenaventura to be founded, but a new presidio and mission at Santa Barbara were to be added to the growing “ladder” of spiritual and secular outposts.

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Father Serra Statue in Washington D.C.

COMMUNITY Having concluded his duties, he returned locally for a brief two-day stop in mid-May to confirm fifteen neophytes. While pleased he finally was able to preside at the founding of the ninth mission, it was a bittersweet moment for Serra. Ever ready to sacrifice comfort and convenience, he believed there were sufficient personnel and supplies to also establish a mission in Santa Barbara as had been done with the first two presidios in San Diego and Monterey. Commander Fages thought differently and even though the Baptismal Register had been inscribed, the tenth mission was to wait until 1786 to be officially established. It was done so by Serra’s successor. Eighteen months later at the end of November 1783, his last visit here was heart-wrenching for everyone. Serra was traveling to each mission to perform confirmations … but also to bid a final farewell. He had just turned 70 and had long ago addressed his advanced age. Indeed, approaching 66, he wrote his superior suggesting a “robust” replacement as “I am pretty useless and tired out, and how much longer can I last?” Before what must have been a tearful farewell, 88 names were added to the Confirmation Register. In the 14 years from the fateful San Diego, nine missions had been established and 19 Franciscans currently labored to convert, feed, build, hope and pray that their efforts would bring souls into heaven. Thousands of baptisms, confirmations and burials were all carefully recorded along with agricultural productions and animal numbers. It was never easy or expected to be. Serra enjoined his superiors to send only men who would be willing to work under most unfavorable circumstances. Yet, men came, some returned to Mexico or Spain, but most would be buried in their new home.


memory of him would be best honored in prayers for the dead. To him, more important than remembering the workers were the souls who now had the prospects of paradise. Yet, the legacy and legends refused to forget. Palou—who undoubtedly had been keeping memories and notes safely tucked away for years—compiled Historical Memoirs of New California and a life of Serra. Both are extraordinarily important books of the era. In later years, the cause for his canonization required an exhaustive search of records primarily in the United States, Mexico, Spain and the Vatican resulting in Maynard Geiger’s authoritative Life and Times of Junipero Serra. Remembering Serra, the State of California designated him as one of two honored in Statuary Hall in Washington, D. C. Closer to home, the imaginary eye can still catch a fleeting glimpse of the small man taking one step after another along the trail—and on the road to eternity—as he paid his seven visits to the central coast. Contact:

After Serra returned to Carmel from his final trek, his frail body needed to rest. He—and others—knew his time was limited. Finally, after attending Mass, he told his friend and eventual successor, Francisco Palou: “Now, let us go to rest.” On August 28, 1784, Serra placed a crucifix on his chest, lay on his rawhide bed and, indeed, finally could rest. So profound an impact the “Apostle of California” had upon those who knew the man, Palou had to watch carefully as bits of hair and his robe were taken by mourners as mementos of their “grey ox” as he was affectionately known. Junipero Serra would never have given a thought as to his efforts as anything more than obedience to his Franciscan order and imperial king. His duties ended in death and any D E C E M B E R


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A Retirement Facility


Even though the prospect of moving may be in are the many distant here things in thatcan are out of our hands. future, you owe it to yourself to learn howlife you enjoy Having an Advance Health Care carefree living in your own home for many years to come. Directive in place gives you a way to

Hospice corner


control something very important—how to assure that decisions regarding your future medical care will reflect your own wishes, the event you are unable to voice those Pristine is fullyin wishes. An Advanced Health Care Directive licensed and insured. (AHCD) is a document that instructs others about your care should you be unable to All of our workers make decisions on your own.

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some day-to-day tasks become too much to handle on our own. That doesn’t mean you have to move away are carefully screened At Hospice Partners of the Central Coast, from the comfort of your home. and pass a criminal we do address the issue of advance care • Personal Pristine Home Services is• aHousekeeping local background check Care planning when patients are referred to our that helps San Luis Obispo and drug test, giving peace of mind However, sometimes, it may be too • Yard company • Handyman Maintenance late for the person who has not prepared an County residents avoid the high cost when someone from Pristine is working AHCD and is unable to communicate due to Servingof moving All oftoSan Luis facility. Obispo County a retirement in your home. disease progression or dementia. The AHCD

By Gina Grieb

allows one to appoint a health care agent

“She helps me(also with bathing and other known as “Durable Power of Attorney Enjoy Affordable Living personal care. She is so wonderful to me. Home Services Specialist for Health Care”) who will have the legal

All of our services can be provided make health decisions She should beauthority cloned!to…and the care price is for daily, weekly, or on an as-needed basis. the person if theydid are no longer able to speak very reasonable. She even my winfor themselves. This is typically a spouse, but From housekeeping You to handyman services and plumbing to preparingyou meals.need There is no task too large or pay for only the services Luis Obispo dows!” R. Watson, can be San another family member, close friend, too small for Pristineand Homewe Services. All of ourthose services can be providedatdaily, weekly, or on an as-needed provide services a price or anyone else you feel will see that your basis. You pay for only the services you need and we provide those services at a price you can“They afford. took the time to ask me exactly wishes and expectations are met. The AHCD you can afford. what I wanted. They on time, did allows youarrived to make specific written instrucPristine Home Services made it possible forwhat Itions for your future health care in the event exactly asked, and the price was Convenient One-call us to stayService comfortable and independent of any situation in which you can no longer reasonable. I would recommend Pristine in our home. When Mary was diagnosed communicate your wishes. It provides a clear Our personal care services include a friend. Hall, San Luisabout Obispo statement of wishes your choice to with cancer, is no longer ato threat, the ” C. shopping, daily errands, mealwhich preparaprolong your life or to withhold or withdraw people at Pristine became a very important tion, transportation part andofnon-medical Before you make anySince decisions treatment. every statethat has different our team. They were trustworthy, laws, it future is important to use state-specific care. Our housekeeping services keep happiness reliable and always stood by ourcould side. Weaffect your advance directives. You may revoke any part our relationship their staff. your kitchen and thetruly restenjoy of your home withand standard take the time orof theliving, entire Advance Health Care Directive -Don and Mary Smith spotless. We even do windows and any time. to read theseattwo FREE reports: laundry. Our yard maintenance crews is suggested that you discuss your health Before you make any decisions that could affect your future happiness and standard of living, take everyIt senior “What needs to know know how to take care of your favorite care desires with your physician. He or she the time to read these two FREE reports: about livingisin a retirement facility. likely to be the one caring for ” you when rose bushes and keep the grass neatly “What every senior needs to know about living in a retirement facility.” your instructions become relevant. Furthermowed. Our handyman services are “Four critical questions to ask more, your physician can a help you phrase “Four critical questions to ask a service provider...before you let anyone work in or near your home.” provided by specialists in plumbing, your requests in a way thatlet makes sense to service provider . . . before you physicians and can answer any questions We invite you to call Pristine rightwork, now so that we can sendrepairs you these two FREE reports by mail. electrical painting, and anyone work in or near your home.” you may have. safety rail installation. Call for rateS We invite youDespite to call Pristine right your best efforts to plan for all now so that we can send you these eventualities in a health care declaration, actual events may not “fit” your directives. two FREE reports by mail. We Bring Assisted Living Home You Whatever you need...give us atocall

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It is important that you discuss your desires with family and friends. They can then often help clarify your directives on the basis of recollections of specific discussions under specific circumstances. In addition, if you have discussed your wishes with a number of people, it is more likely that those wishes will be honored. Another benefit of discussion with family members is the avoidance of unpleasant scenes and


confrontations when you are incapacitated. While family members may have little legal authority to make decisions for incapacitated patients, they may feel they have moral authority. If your wishes have been made clear in advance, there is a greater likelihood that family members will agree to follow your wishes, even if they may personally disagree with your choices.



Experts agree the time to discuss your views about end-of-life care, and to learn about the end-of-life care choices available, is before a life limiting illness occurs or a crisis happens. By preparing in advance, you can help reduce the doubt or anxiety related to making decisions for you when you cannot speak for yourself. To obtain a copy of a state-specific Advance Health Care Directive, visit the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization website at, or contact Hospice Partners. This monthly Hospice Corner is sponsored by Hospice Partners of the Central Coast. Gina Grieb is the Community Education & Events Coordinator at Hospice Partners. For more information, call (805) 782-8608.

STATEPOINT CROSSWORD THEME: FAMOUS ATHLETES ACROSS 1. Like winters in the North, e.g. 6. Western omelet ingredient 9. One of the Three Bears 13. Japanese port 14. International Labor Organization 15. Peeled or trimmed 16. Drawing support 17. A nervous ___ 18. Plural of #10 Down 19. *Most decorated Olympian 21. Unwelcome to a comedian 23. High rocky hill 24. Ditto 25. Wear and tear 28. Opposite of warp in weaving 30. Exhort 35. South of Market Area in San Francisco 37. Like Oscar in “The Odd Couple”

39. Composer of American military marches 40. Wing-shaped 41. *2002 gold medal skater, Hughes 43. Angelina’s husband 44. Like a wall covered with certain evergreen 46. Hurtful remark 47. *Quipping Hall-of-Famer 48. *PGA great, Byron 50. Snakelike sushi staple 52. Last word of “America, the Beautiful” 53. Wasn’t straight 55. Romanian money 57. *He led an army? 60. *”His Airness” 63. Rub hard 64. Boiling blood 66. Farewell, to ami 68. African tea or chew 69. Rank above maj. 70. Prison-related 71. Strong desires

72. ___ Aviv 73. Go the way of Vesuvius DOWN 1. Tiller’s tool 2. Hurry! 3. Poison ivy woe 4. Clay pigeon shooting 5. Render something holy 6. Not misses 7. *Rhyming fighter 8. Cafe order 9. Central to NYC 10. Seed cover 11. *Soccer great known by single name 12. Online pop-ups 15. *Reggie Miller’s team 20. *Ali seem to relish it 22. Down Under bird 24. With an illustrious past? 25. *Fastest man on Earth 26. To crack, as in case 27. Inbox letter

29. We pledge allegiance to it 31. Pass 32. Continental money 33. Missouri River tributary 34. *Bela Karolyi prodigy 36. Mars, to the Greeks 38. *He was passed by Hammerin’ Hank 42. Conversation starter 45. Sorrows 49. Not a thing 51. Colorful Mexican wrap 54. Order 56. Milk dispenser 57. Dull pain 58. Multicolored horse 59. Brazils or filberts, e.g. 60. Become gelatinous 61. Hokkaido language 62. Less than average tide 63. Blue hue 65. Future fish 67. Last, abbr.



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COMMUNITY 2012. Council pays close attention from the results of those surveys. The current survey, which was distributed in utility bills, had 2198 respondents, the vast majority of whom were city residents.

palm street perspective

thank you ... now it’s time to roll up our sleeves and get to work By SLO City Mayor, Jan Marx

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

deserve credit for a job well done.

Thank you so much for re-electing me Mayor of San Luis Obispo by 63% of the votes cast! I am moved by all the community support for my leadership and enthusiastic volunteer work along the campaign trail. The fact that fellow Council members, John Ashbaugh and Dan Carpenter also won by substantial margins shows strong approval for the job we as an entire Council have done over the past two years. Council members Andrew Carter and Kathy Smith, although they were not up for election, also

Now that the election is over, it is time to roll up our collective sleeves and get to work, completing the 2035 update of the Land Use and Circulation Element, ( making new Advisory Body appointments and setting a nicely balanced budget for the next two years, just to name a few projects on our agenda.

We are here for you.

Nicole Pazdan, CSA “Placing a loved one is full of complicated choices. You can call on us to help guide and support you through this emotional decision .”

The turnout in this election reflects our long tradition of civic involvement, which is key to our success as a city. Our civic involvement has made us world famous. It is a big reason Dan Buettner (and later, Oprah) called our city “the happiest city in North America.”

Respondents want to retain the current residential growth rate of 1%, and encourage more mass transit and bicycle paths. We do not want to sprawl beyond the city’s borders to accommodate more housing. We want fewer bars in the downtown and more, small city parks in residential areas. The only thing that the majority of respondents said they would support actually paying more money for was expanding open space and the greenbelt. Check out the results of the 2012 survey for yourself on line at http://www. survey_2012.09.16-rrr.pdf

As Buettner pointed out in his National Geographic book, Thrive, “Deliberately aiming for the right balance between prosperity and the pursuit of happiness, the people of (San Luis Obispo) have developed a taste for civic involvement, self-employment, fresh foods, local wines and volunteering for good causes … The result has been a boost in civic pride that has raised their level of well-being to one of the highest in the United States.”

On January 8th the Council will hold a Community Forum followed by the Council Goal-Setting Workshop on January 26, 2013. Please save the dates and speak up about your priorities for our fair city. And, take the budget priorities survey, http://www.jotformpro. com/slocity/budgetsurvey. So, keeping up our honored tradition of civic involvement, please speak up. Your City Council wants to hear Pazdan, CSA whatLester youRogart& have Nicole to say!

Our civic involvement also includes a high response rate to citizen surveys, such as the one the city conducted to guide the Land Use and Circulation updates of 1988, and again in

Looking forward,

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Jan Marx, Mayor


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In response to the question “How would you rate the overall quality of life in San Luis Obispo,” 80.9% rated it “high.” When asked about the city’s greatest strengths, taking top spots were the natural environment (air quality, open space), low crime rate and access to fresh produce and healthy foods. The greatest problems identified were the homeless, traffic and lack of jobs and affordable housing.



The Magazine of Downtown San Luis Obispo


December 2012

W hat ’s U p Downtown B usiness Spo tlights

W h a t ’ s

U p

A r o u n d


D o w n t o w n


your entry: “Hot dog, look at all those doxies…!” It’s just one of those good ol’ fun, happy, downhome kinds of things to do, so we hope to see you there. Plus, the tree lights along Higuera will add an extra special touch this year; arrive early to stake out your spot between Morro and Garden streets to enjoy this feature. (Entire Parade route and map at

eason’s Greetings! With The Holidays officially upon us, at the Downtown Association we are fully underway with a slate of activities, events, fun and joy for our local residents, their families and guests, visitors and anyone/everyone with “Visit Downtown SLO” on their list in December.


ight around the corner, we’ll host the Annual Holiday Parade—now in its 37th year! Themed “Dreaming of a Downtown Holiday,” y this printing, Santa’s House will have Deborah Cash, CMSM, this SLO tradition is must-see if you are one of the Executive Director already opened in Mission Plaza and through few people who actually aren’t IN the 100-plus Christmas Eve will be open daily. This year, entry affair. Held on the first Friday of December (this thanks to a generous grant from the City’s Promotional year December 7), the procession showcases a myriad Coordinating Committee, we will be adding a slate of community interests from businesses to churches to of “Special Events at Santa’s House” with music, dance troupes to animals. While typically I work the event dance, arts and crafts and story telling to enhance the (it’s all-hands-on-deck for this gargantuan promotion), experience of children dropping in to tell Santa their I’ve also had the opportunity to be IN the parade both heartfelt wishes. The Carousel arrives on December 3 with the “Walking in a Weenie Wonderland” dachshund completing the “Plaza Package” of Santa’s House, the entry a few years ago and last year with the Downtown Holiday Tree and the fun merry go round. Schedules for Foresters. Hard to tell whether it’s more fun to be on the all events are available at curb watching, sipping hot chocolate and applauding usinesses are getting in on the action as well. From the floats and bands or rolling down the street waving to wonderfully creative windows to in-store specials thousands of people and hearing the announcer call out



On the Cover: He's here! The jolly ol' guy himself will be on hand to hear kids' wishes through December 24.

The Downtown Association is proud to host Santa's House daily in Mission Plaza--and a beautiful house it is! Every child receives a coloring book, candy cane and small toy free of charge. Photo packages and carousel rides also available. Visit for a schedule of events at Santa's House. Collage of children's letters from last year assembled by Deborah Cash.

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and Open Houses to gift-wrapping and later evening hours, Downtown retailers, restaurateurs, galleries, museums and service providers are going all out to make your Downtown experience memorable and enjoyable. Some are even offering Parking Structure Tokens to provide a free hour of parking in one of the conveniently located garages; pretty much all are communicating with their customers about ‘minding the meter’ or reminding that by using the parking structures, you can spend your time worry-free of getting a ticket.


’ve put together a message for readers recently published in the “Downtown-only” Holiday Shopping Guide (found in news racks around town) that I feel is worth repeating here. My belief in shopping, eating and contributing locally compels me to share why doing so supports our community and YOU, our local citizens. Before you go online or drive north or south to shop, consider why investing locally is a better idea:

10. 9. 8.

Keeps dollars local (money spent in SLO stays here and supports local services)

Promotes a sense of community (take time to get to know your neighbors) Is a lot of fun (bring your camera!)

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Provides local jobs (a lot of part time positions help students and families during the holiday season)

6. 5. 4.

Gives families a way to spend time together (great alternative to TV)

Makes memories (who doesn’t remember their favorite holidays past?) Is something a lot of people would like to do but they live too far away (Just ask your relatives in points south, east or north)


Provides lots of ‘free’ things to do (From museums to the creek to people watching…lots to do for free or nearly free!)


Offers exercise opportunities (Hike one end to the other, run up the parking structure staircases, ride your bike into Downtown…whew, a great workout!)


nd the #1 Reason: Proves that we really ARE the happiest town in the USA!

hank you for your patronage of Downtown throughout the year and your support of the businesses that provide so much to our wonderful community… around Downtown.

In recognition of Home Health and Hospice Month, we’d like to thank our caregivers, nurses, therapists, and volunteers for all of their work. Affiliated with three award winning hospitals— Arroyo Grande Community Hospital French Hospital Medical Center, Marian Regional Medical Center. Most insurances accepted Medicare Certified

State Licensed Joint Commission Accredited

For more information call 1-800-549-9609 Formerly Marian Home Health, Hospice and Infusion

D o w n t o w n

B u s i n e s s

Granada Hotel & Bistro

Kimberly Walker, managing partner 1126 Morro Street 805-544-9100 According to Kimberly Walker, managing partner of The Lunacy Club LLC, the one thing missing from Downtown is a four-star boutique hotel and restaurant and they have developed the solution. The Granada Building, located on Morro Street between Union Bank and jewelry design store Baxter Moerman, has been completely remodeled into the Granada Hotel and Bistro with an upstairs lounge and 17-room hotel. “Our goal was to keep the spirit of the original Hotel Granada, and the original Granada Bistro, while creating a four-star boutique property,” Walker said. Each of the hotel rooms has its own identity with different furniture and designs and the entire building has an artistic and chic feel. In the 1920s, the building was a hotel and entertainment hot


Julia Pickslay, owner 853 Monterey Street (at the end of Rose Alley) 805-781-0119 Assets is a workout clothing boutique up front and a barre fitness studio in the back. Owner Julia Pickslay promotes that her studio offers unique classes you can’t find anywhere else as well as fashionable workout wear that translates to the street. Barre fitness is the primary class offered at Assets and it incorporates movements from ballet, yoga and pilates. It is a non-impact, body-toning and postural improvement class. Pickslay notes that after taking just three classes, you will notice differences in your posture and after ten classes, your silhouette will improve. Because barre fitness engages

Sanpei Optics

Richard Sanpei and Linda Parker Sanpei, owners 641 Higuera Street, Suite 211 805-541-3873 Sunglasses can do more than just protect your eyes from the sun’s rays thanks to inventor Richard Sanpei. The unique eyewear allows the user to connect to their phone or other device to communicate, stream music or audio-books, or cancel noise. The flexible design lets the user wear them without earbuds as traditional glasses, or with only one earbud in, adjusting for various needs throughout the day. Sanpei, a long-term local resident and general contractor, conceptualized the design when he watched construction workers fumbling with their ear plugs. With the input of engineers he was able to create a revolutionary one-of-a-kind retractable and fully adjustable hinged temple bar, which was granted a U.S. Utility Patent. The glasses are perfect for the sports enthusiast and active lifestyle user, but are

S p o t l i g h t s spot that inspired Walker to bring back what once was a popular destination. “The place has taken on its own identity and energy,” Walker said. She described the look of the building as having a mix between vintage and industrial elegance. “Its Downtown location, the artistic vibe, the high level of service and stellar restaurant in the heart of the property is going to set this hotel apart from other hotels in the area,” Walker said.

The Granada Bistro and the entire surrounding structures have been remodeled and retrofitted but the skeleton of the original brick building has been left intact. Adding to the elegant ambiance, the Bistro reopened with more seating, an expanded menu, outdoor dining and a roof top patio. She and her three partners want to achieve a high level of hospitality and consider the remodeling of the Granada Building as truly a passionate project for them. By: Amanda Margozzi all muscles of your body, the moves will burn more calories than other exercises and effectively elongate muscles. “Because barre was virtually unknown in this area, I wanted to open up the studio to make it more prominent,” said Pickslay. Assets is Pickslay’s first and only studio and considers it to be one of Downtown’s hidden special places as it is located off Monterey Street at the end of Rose Alley. “The brick building is over 100 years old and it’s beautiful. It’s clean and welcoming and sets Assets apart from other gyms,” said Pickslay. Her goal in designing the studio was to make the client feel like she or he is walking into a spa in Vegas. The studio is ‘upscale professional’ and emphasizes personal one-on-one attention. Class schedules are viewable online and private training is also available. By: Amanda Margozzi also useful in many other applications such as heavy equipment operation, the airline and military industries, as well as everyday home hobbyist. The glasses are convenient because they guarantee the ear buds won’t fall out during activities. The sunglasses also promote being “handsfree,” and the earbuds are waterproof. Richard and Linda have collaborated with several local resources, including the Small Business Development Center for Innovation, Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the marketing department at Cal Poly. They have been gaining support through crowd funding, a technique for raising funds by rewarding their ‘Visionary Partners’ with a pair of firstproduction glasses at, which is set to end on December 3. Sanpei Optics eyewear will be launched in the market in January. Their office is located at 641 Higuera Street, and can be reached at 805-541-3873, or visit: By: Amanda Margozzi

Around Downtown November 23 rd

Founders Community Bank’s

Santa’s House Opening Day

Through December 24th

December 7 th

Court Street presents

Dreaming of a Downtown Holiday

37 th Annual Holiday Parade 7 p.m. Downtown SLO

December 3 rd ~ 24 th La Cuesta Inn presents

Classic Carousel in Mission P laza


Friday, November 23 - Opening Day

10:00 10:00-3:00 11:00-4:00 11:00-12:00 1:00-2:00 2:00-3:00

Santa Arrives SLO County Band Free Treats & Refreshments - Cowboy Cookie & Jamba Juice G. Brothers Kettle Corn SLO Friends of the Library - Crafts Jamba Juice SLO Friends of the Library - Magician Jim Wilson Civic Ballet of SLO Shanks Family Quartet

Saturday, November 24 10:00-3:00 2:00- 3:00

SLO Friends of the Library - Crafts Dance Obispo

11:00-4:00 12:00-3:00 2:00

Beverly’s Fabrics & Crafts - Craft Tables Cuesta Jazz Mark’s Balloonies

12:00 2:00

Enchanted Faces - Face Painting Mark’s Balloonies

11:00-3:00 12:00-3:00 2:00 3:00-5:00

SLO Friends of the Library - Crafts Music by: Atalanta Running Mark’s Balloonies ABC Kids Choir

11:00-3:00 1:00-2:00 2:00

SLO Friends of the Library - Crafts SLO Friends of the Library - Music for Kids - John Beccia & Emy Bruzzo Mark’s Balloonies

Saturday, December 1 Sunday, December 2

Saturday, December 8

Sunday, December 9

Cal Poly Fraternities & Sororities present

Saturday, December 15

in Mission Plaza

Sunday, December 16

Holiday Tree

12:00-4:00 12:00-3:00 2:00

SLO Symphony - Musical Petting Zoo Music by: Phil Cisineros Mark’s Balloonies

12:00 2:00 4:00-5:00

Enchanted Faces - Face Painting Mark’s Balloonies Opera SLO

1:00-3:00 2:00

Something Ridiculous Variety Performance Mark’s Balloonies

Saturday, December 22

Sunday, December 23 2:00

Call (805) 541 - 0286 or visit for more information

Mark’s Balloonies

Events are FREE, open to the public & subject to weather, for more info call 541-0286 or visit



252 Higuera Street San Luis Obispo (805) 541-TIRE


John Kimball


109 South Street SLO, CA 93401

“Specializing in Honesty and Integrity”

Expanded walkway for san luis obispo

The City of San Luis Obispo recently held a ribbon cutting ceremony officially opening the Los Osos Valley Road Multi-Use Pathway which provides a Safer Route for Students and Public. The multiuse pathway was installed for walking and bike use of C.L. Smith Elementary and Laguna Middle School students, as well as the general public. The Los Osos Valley Road Multi-Use Pathway was federally funded by a Safe Routes to School grant in conjunction with San Luis Coastal Unified School District.

slo hires new natural resources manager

Assistant City Manager, Michael Codron, recently announced the appointment of Bob Hill to be the City’s next Natural Resources Manager. Mr. Hill will succeed Neil Havlik, who retired on June 30th, after 16 years of service to the City. Mr. Hill currently serves as the Executive Director for the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County. In his capacity as Executive Director, he worked closely with the City on major land preservation and habitat restoration projects, including the Froom Ranch acquisition. Mr. Hill has worked for the Land Conservancy since 2001 in various capacities.

San Luis Obispo’s Best Kept Secret Power Carts Senior Discount (55) • 10 Play C ards • Tournaments Welcome • •

Tee Times on our website: or call 805-781-7309


Literacy council needs volunteer tutors

The Literacy Council for SLO County has an ongoing and urgent need for volunteer tutors. Our 2-part, Tutor Training Workshop will take place on Saturday December 1st, and Saturday December 8th, at the SLO County Library, 995 Palm St. from 9:00am to 3:30pm. There is a $25.00 registration fee. For more information or to sign up, please call 541-4219 or visit our website at

new name for leading hospice home care

Marian Home Health, Hospice, and Infusion has changed its name to Dignity Health Home Health, Hospice and Infusion. As the largest local provider, the name change to Dignity Health Home Health, Hospice and Infusion Services more accurately reflects the comprehensive home health, hospice and infusion services offered throughout the Central Coast. For more information please contact Dignity Health Marketing at (805) 739-3580.

free Senior Healthcare screening

Screening for adults and seniors is available throughout San Luis Obispo County. Free services include: screening for high blood pressure, weight and pulse. Finger prick screening tests for: high cholesterol, anemia and blood sugar. Counseling and referrals as needed. Please call 544-2484 ext.1 for dates, times and locations.

Donna Lewis, Principal (805) 783-4000 NMLS #245945



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Pacific Oak Foreclosure Services INC


994 Mill Street • Suite 230 San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 TEL (805) 544-9242 • CELL (805) 235-0493 FAX (805) 543-7838 EMAIL

Fpac receives grant from slo

The Foundation for the Performing Arts Center is the recipient of a PCC grant from the City of San Luis Obispo. The funds supported BravoSLO, a free open house at the Performing Arts Center featuring local performing groups that took place recently. Mayor Jan Marx presented Heather Cochrane, Executive Director of the Foundation for the PAC, and Melody Klemin, Outreach Services Specialist for the PAC, with a PCC grant check for $5,600.

A reverse mortgage could help stay in Frank your own home. Call today to learn more about this government-insured program for accessing your home’s equity.

Bob Gayle Reverse Mortgage Consultant 805/772-3658 NMLS License 582948 CA DRE Broker License 00466813

NMLS License 98161 CA DRE Corporation License 01820779 Borrower must maintain property as primary residence and remain current on property taxes and insurance. Security One Lending, 3131 Camino Del Rio North, Suite 1400, San Diego, CA 92108.

a benefit for casa of slo county

Celebrate the season of giving at CASA’s Voices for Children fundraising event in the Madonna Inn’s beautiful Gay 90s Room on Tuesday, December 5th, at 11:30. CASA’s Voices for Children luncheon will feature lively entertainment by emcee Dave Hovde, a children’s musical performance by the children of the Central Coast Children’s Choir, a silent auction featuring a selection of fine local wines and other unique items, and a live auction of beautiful floral arrangements created by local florists. Find the perfect gift at the ever-popular “Jewelry with a Past,” with a special preview sale starting at 11:00 so you can browse the extensive collection of items on display. Treat yourself, your friends or office staff to the perfect holiday party while supporting CASA! Tickets are $50 per person. Call 541-6542 or visit to purchase tickets.

C rossword S O L U T I O N S Exterior & Interior Plastering

Custom Homes and Patch Repairs · Free Estimates · Call or stop by

Terry Evans, President

4180 Vachell Lane · San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 805/541-4750 · 805/541-4118 FAX · CA LIC#759246




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united way youth board offers grants for youth

M a i n ta i n i n g E xcEllEn c E

The United Way of SLO County Youth Board is proud to announce its members for the 2012-2013 year. This group of 30 high school students hail from 10 cities across SLO County and seek to increase philanthropy and leadership in SLO County youth, improve programs to better serve our community, and promote positive relationships between youth and adults. As part of their philanthropic work, the Youth Board will award three $1,000 grants to local youth-driven programs. Individuals and groups are encouraged to create projects that have a positive impact on youth (up to age 19), and incorporate some youth development principles, such as the 40 Developmental Assets.

local historian receives national recognition

Gary A. Sage License No. 0E02096 100 Cross Street, Suite 203 San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

(805) 593-1400 (805) 593-1401 fax (805) 593-1413 direct (805) 235-1043 cell

Local Historian and writer for Journal Plus Magazine recently received one of the highest national awards for his historical research and writing. The California Council for the Preservation of History presented Joe Carotenuti with the Dave Byrd Certificate of Meritorious Performance and Promise for 2012.

ballet theatre presents “the velveteen rabbit”

D ressing Windows in San Luis Obispo for over 39 Years

Alan “Himself” D E C E M B E R

alan’s draperies 544-9405 2012

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Ballet Theatre SLO has a lovely holiday program coming December 14-16 in the Spanos Theatre, “The Velveteen Rabbit” revival. It’s a magical journey based on Margery Williams’ classic children’s book. The heartwarming story of innocence and love transcends age. Performances are Friday, 12/14 at 11am YOPAC, Saturday 12/15 2pm & 7pm full performance and Sunday 12/16 2pm full performance. Full Performance tickets $15-$35 @ www.pacslo. org or 756-2787



eye on Business

john myers delivers postelection insight By Maggie Cox, Barnett Cox & Associates


ohn Myers is a seasoned political journalist who reported for KSBY some years ago, then made the move to Sacramento with KQED Public Radio. John was one of the anchors of The California Report, a well-regarded, insightful program focused on the goingson in our State government. Earlier this year John returned to television news when he was named political editor for KXTV in Sacramento. His smart, fair minded, tenacious reporting and his love of all stories political have made him one of California’s most respected government commentators. I share John’s background to illustrate he is someone in the know. He’s articulate and connected and also a favorite speaker at the Central Coast Economic Forecast. John was in San Luis Obispo and on the dais for the event in November, and he shared his thoughts on the then-72 hour old General Election and what it meant for California. We may be hundreds of miles from our State Capitol, but policies and programs coming out of Sacramento have a direct impact on local business. It’s important we stay connected.

He also reviewed the unusual nature of senate and assembly races that pitted same party candidates against each other, reflecting the new “top two finishers” principle (i.e., the top two vote getters in the primary election are the names on the ballot for the general). The new rule created some lively races in which incumbents faced off against same-party challengers, and some that were lively to a fault. John punctuated his remarks by showing two same-party candidates in a physical shoving match at a candidate’s forum. But the information I found most interesting focused on the change in voting behavior and the shifting electorate. John spoke of the huge surge in absentee voting and how it influences campaigns with earlier and earlier decision-making, and delays vote counting. Nine million absentee ballots were mailed out in California and many of those were hand delivered on Election Day. There is an increasing diversity reflected in voter turnout: 55 percent of California voters this

John Myers

election were white and 22 percent Latino. And most telling of all—fully 27 percent of the voters in California fell into the 18- to 29-year-old age group. That is an impressive upswing in young voters, and one that tells us this group is paying attention. We’re going to need our young adults to stay engaged, especially as California pushes to improve its educational system, better compensate teachers and better prepare for the challenges ahead. The system needs help and it’s good to know our next generation is on the job. If you’d like to hear more, listen to John Myers’ pod cast available on KXTV’s website:

John reviewed the various ballot measures and offered his analysis of the results. He talked about the millions of dollars spent by both opponents and proponents of the propositions. He offered his insight on the new Democratic super majority in the State Legislature and how it changes rules, with the Legislature now able to take direct actions previously precluded, including sidestepping the governor on some matters. John said the range of Democratic philosophies will be more apparent—from very liberal leaning Democrats to mid-range to more conservative Democrats, and that it will be interesting to see how the body moves ahead, especially on issues related to the environment. D E C E M B E R


Journal PLUS



DECEMBER Almanac By Phyllis Benson

“I don’t know what’s in the box, but I love it. Unopened gifts contain hope.” —Jarod Kintz

irruptions, arrivals of birds not normally found in the area, excite winter bird watchers. These quirky invasions of birds from another region may be due to lack of food in their normal habitat, harsh weather, or migration disruption, but they boost the bird counting tallies. our neighbor says bird irruptions are like uninvited relatives. They hog the holiday feast, roost in the best beds, bully local residents, then leave with nary a thanks. Winter solstice is December 21. This mid-winter point marks the longest night of the year. 75 Years ago Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered at the

Carthay Circle Theater in Los Angeles. In its first year, the full-length animated feature grossed over $8 million. Admission to the theater was a dime.

December begins with Eat a Red Apple Day and ends with

National Champagne Day, book-ending a month of celebrations.

December 1812: California was rattled by a major earthquake that rolled through the Santa Barbara Channel and damaged buildings from Lompoc to Los Angeles.

postal: On December 16, 1912, the first United States postage stamp picturing an airplane was issued.

December 23 hosts Festivus, an alternative holiday to Christmas. Festivus, occurring about half-way between winter solstice and Christmas, is a light-hearted secular and non-commercial time with family and friends. No tree, no gifts, no shopping. mistletoe: More people become engaged in December than any

December 7 is Letter Writing Day. Tuck a hand-written note in

those holiday cards.

Streetcars: The first Municipal Railway streetcars rolled onto San Francisco streets in December, 1912.

neiman-marcus offers a unique gift for car buffs. Their McLaren

other month. Wedding planners say the holiday spirit and family gatherings prompt the proposals.

a good christmas leaves good memories. Charlton Heston said, “My first copies of Treasure Island and Huckleberry Finn still have some blue-spruce needles scattered in the pages. They smell of Christmas still.”

12C Spider, with a limited edition of 12 cars, is a Santa-red color with a 616 horsepower V8 twin turbo engine.

lunar: The full moon is on December 28 and is called the Full Cold Moon for its wintery appearance and night-chilled glow.

our mechanic says it is a dream car, and you can just keep dreaming, as the $350,000 cars sold out within 2 hours.

the old farmer’s almanac reports fishing is best from December 13 to 28 as tides are higher than normal and fish tend to feed more.

be an operation santa paws helper. The event promotes holiday treat and toy donations to animal shelters. Those kennel pups and kits deserve a winter doldrum break while they wait for new homes.

our fisherman says even the fish deserve seasonal peace. Over the holidays he trades the boat for the recliner and fishes for the remote control.

bird alert: The annual Audubon Bird Count is here. Volunteers tally birds in a geographic area. The event, over a century old, gathers information for tracking bird populations and trends.

we are homebodies for the month. The dogs are drowsy, the cat is comatose, and the year has been a doozy. The comforter and cookies are calling. Have an enchanting December.

Let our family take care of your family.

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