Ripon Almond Blossom 2023

Page 1

61st Annual Ripon

Almond Blossom


VALLEY OAK DENTAL GROUP Serving the community since 1979 General Dentistry Dr. Bonnie Morehead Dr. Ron Joseph Dr. Rudy Ciccarelli Dr. Elizabeth Grecco

Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Dr. Mark Grecco Valley Oak Dental Group is a multi-specialty group practice committed to excellence. Our Pediatric Department provides a comfortable, caring atmosphere for your children. We provide the latest General Dentistry procedures in a state-of-the-art dental suite. Our Oral Surgery Department provides general anesthesia and I.V. sedation in a safe, professional environment.

(209) 823-9341 Pediatric Dentistry

Dr. Mohammad El Farra

Members of • California Dental Association • American Dental Association • San Joaquin P.P.A.

1507 W. Yosemite, Manteca • Between Airport and Union


The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival


When Dave Phippen walks through an orchard, he takes it all in – the sights, the sounds, and the smells of the cash crop blooming around him that has helped put food on his family’s table for generations. And while the price that growers are currently getting for almonds is down and the struggles with exporting the abundance of the crop that is currently sitting in storage bins and warehouses are intensifying, it’s the thought of passing on his operation to members of his family that keeps him going. “When I’m walking those fields, I’m thankful to God first of all for having the health to allow me to be able to be out there,” said Phippen of what keeps him going after decades of toiling in the San Joaquin Valley soil. “And I’m remembering the holiday dinner table, and the 8 or 9 grandchildren that hopefully will one day likely have a shot at doing what grandpa is doing – keeping the family farm alive. “It’s about presenting the same opportunity that my parents presented my brother and cousin and I with Travaille and Phippen – to keep it going forward to that next generation.” As tens of thousands get ready to descend on Ripon for it’s annual Almond Blossom Festival, Phippen has stayed busy checking the weather reports and the popcorn blooms that are starting to form on orchards throughout California. If the temperature drops below a certain point, it’s dangerous to the potential crop – opening the door to frost damage that can wipe out entire orchards for the season. All of the work to prepare to plant, to nurture the trees, and to keep them healthy – almond trees can take between 5 and 12 year to start producing nuts – can be wiped out seemingly overnight if the conditions during this precarious time don’t cooperate. “We’re just getting some popcorn blooms right now, and the bee boxes are out, and those bees are really excited – we’re paying through the nostrils to have them, but we’re happy to be at this point,” Phippen said. “We just got by the frost danger this week by the skin of our chinny-chinchin and now it looks like we’re going to have some cloud clover and some rain – which can also cause problems. “Frost has the potential to be the most devastating, like what happened up our fellow growers up in Chico, but we’re equally concerned about both.” While things have improved in terms of the ability of growers to get their products out to the markets that need them, Phippen said that transportation issues that cropped up during the pandemic are still an ongoing concern for growers and shippers of almonds.

Bulletin file photos

Almond blossoms bursting out in orchards around Ripon, Manteca, and Escalon today in six months will allow a whole lot of shaking in six months.

For one thing, the abundant supply in warehouses means that brokers know that scarcity is not an issue with almonds and that drives the price that they’re able to get down. With costs rising in nearly every other facet of the business, those lower prices – which, coincidentally, are not equally felt on the consumer side – mean tighter budgets and less leeway. The demand, Phippen said, remains in markets that previously purchased California almonds, but simply getting the product to the people who want it remains a challenge – which is exacerbated by the tightening budgets of consumers in the wake of the financial impacts of the

COVID-19 pandemic. “I think that the people that wanted almonds before still want them now, but the issue is that when a family goes to Costco they are first going to be buying milk, and cereal, and grain-type things and by the time they get to the nut aisle, they may be out cash – that worries me a little bit,” Phippen said. “Unfortunately, some people are priced out of the market in times like this – they have to get gas in their car and essential items on their table. “On one hand almonds have never been more affordable – there’s an abundance of supply and the people that buy them know that and it doesn’t leave us in the best position to negotiate – but the

economic conditions we’re seeing the ability to pay for food is a little bit worrying for us an industry.” Even though Phippen’s daily concerns are very different than those of the average attendee of the Almond Blossom Festival, the longtime grower said that he has noticed how the community’s tradition of keeping an agricultural focus has trickled down even to new residents who aren’t necessarily familiar with the city’s longstanding traditions. It’s not uncommon, he said, to have people that know he’s an almond grower ask him questions about the crop, or the season, or the artform of growing almonds itself – conversations that he said he’s

always willing to have with people when they arise. “I think the impact is even greater than we realize,” Phippen said of the community’s annual festival. “When somebody is new to Ripon and they find out I’m a farmer, they ask questions – they want to know about the bees, or about the drought, and I think there’s a lot more awareness than most farmers realize. “This is an event that ties it all together and brings people into town to appreciate and enjoy the beauty in these orchards, and I think that it focuses things, even just for a brief moment, into remembering that Ripon is an agricultural community.” And while there has been

much discussion about the ethics of going into orchards for the perfect almond blossom photo, Phippen said that he’s always been one to welcome visitors with open arms – just asking that they park on the side of the road and be respectful as they come and their pictures. “We’ve always been one to welcome people,” Phippen said. “There are always a few bad actors, but for the most people are good actors – just remember to leave your car at the roadside and walk into the orchard and enjoy these beautiful blooms.” To contact Bulletin reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.

The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival


Miss Ripon and last year’s Almond Blossom Festival Queen Briley Perez shares the stage with this year’s princesses and queen hopefuls following the annual speech contest at Ripon City Hall.


Carnival, queen crowning, spaghetti dinner opens Almond Blossom Festival A growing sea of white and pink almond blossoms can mean only one thing — it’s time for Ripon to go nuts while celebrating the valley’s bounty and the joys of small town living. The 61st annual Ripon Almond Blossom Festival — the first major community festival of 2023 in the Northern San Joaquin Valley — starts its four-day run Thursday. It features plenty of fun activities including a family-orientated carnival as well as a festival complete with numerous vendors, food options and entertainment. The setting for the festival is magical given Mistlin Sports Park where it takes place on River Road will be then be surrounded on three sides by blooming orchards. That is where vendors offering everything from crafts, trinkets, clothing, and food — not to mention just about anything that is edible that can be wedded with almonds — takes place Friday, Feb. 24, from 2 to 8 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 25, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, Feb. 26 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The carnival opens at Mistlin Sports Park on Thursday, Feb. 23, from 5 to 10 p.m. featuring “Dollar Ride Night.” It continues Friday, Feb. 24, from 4 to 10 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 25, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday, Feb. 26 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Thursday, Feb. 20, events include a bake-off from 7 to 10 a.m., the Ripon Lions spaghetti dinner from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., and the queen coronation at 7 p.m. all at the Ripon Community Center on Fifth Street. The queen candidates are Ava Brocchini, Kylee Fullmer, Madison Hendley, Anniston Holck, Ava Keast, Payton Miller-Kay, Anika Schooland, Madeline Staley, Madeline Stewart, and Nayeli Zuniga. The Friday, Feb. 24, activities include a craft and bake sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Ripon Senior Center, Community Stage “Teen Night” Live Music at Mistlin Sports Park from 5 to 8 p.m., and the Ripon Quarterback Club Golf Tournament at Copper Valley in

Copperopolis. Saturday, Feb. 25, starts off with the Grange Pancake Breakfast from 6 to 10 a.m. at the Grange Hall and the American Legion Auxiliary from 7 a.m. to noon at the Legion Hall, fun run starting at 8:30 a.m. at Marvis Stouffer Park, a bake and craft sake from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Ripon Senior Center, a bake sale from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Immanuel Christian Reformed Church from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the diaper derby at 10 a.m. at the Ripon High North Gym, and the Ripon Quarterback Club Brats & Drinks at the Ripon Community Center from 1 to 7 p.m. There will also be live music on the Community Stage at Mistlin Sports Park from noon to 8 p.m. Swiss Club Dance for those 21 years and older starts at 7 p.m. at the Ripon Swiss Club. The parade starts at 1 p.m. through the downtown district. On Sunday, Feb. 24, there will also be live music on the Community Stage at Mistlin Sports Park from noon to 5 p.m. Additional information can be found at To contact Dennis Wyatt, email dwyatt@

Bank With Us Love Your Bank When your bank merges, is acquired or moves, it can affect you in ways you may not appreciate. Don’t like the idea of being caught in the middle of change you didn’t ask for? Fall in love with your bank again with Bank of Stockton! Bank of Stockton has been a stable and secure choice for more than 155 years. We offer all of the products and services customers expect from a bigger bank along with the advantages of a bank that is truly invested in you and your community.


The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival


The Ripon Chamber of Commerce recognized its many supporters at the February City Council meeting.



President and CEO Kelly Donohue and board President Dr. Debbie Daniels accepts the City of Ripon proclamation honoring the Ripon Chamber of Commerce from Mayor Michael Restuccia.

Sales - Rental - Pump Services Stockton (209) 460-0450 Holt (209) 921-6011

Crows Landing (209) 837-4669

Ballico (209) 634-5072 Dixon (707) 678-4277

Not many organizations can celebrate 100 years of service to a community. The Ripon Chamber of Commerce has done just that and more. According to CEO and President Kelly Donohue, her organization accomplishes many things in town, but much of that takes place behind the scenes and may not be immediately obvious. She noted that the main goal of any chamber is to help to further the interests of small businesses in the area. The success of the Ripon Chamber of Commerce is “because we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us,” said board President Dr. Debbie Daniels. In research conducted by local historian John Mangelos, several of those accomplishments can be traced to the 12 dedicated men who affixed their signatures to a document that set into motion the most prolific organization that Ripon has ever known. On July 24, 1923, Frank C. Jordan, Secretary of State, signed the Ripon Chamber of Commerce Articles of Incorporation. The chamber, before that, saw its beginning as the Board of Trade and Merchant’s Association, from 1914 to 1915. It was newspaper publisher C.A. McBrian who was moving the force behind the formation of a chamber, along with fellow community members’ AJ Nourse (owner of Waterworks and the first-ever president of the Chamber), Vigo Meedom (banker), Andrew Douma (local merchant), Harold Davis (hardware store owner), C.B. Tawny (warehouse owner and ice dealer), George Bainbridge (farmer), Bruce DuVall (Ripon Lumber Company owner), Hubert L. Dickey (banker), Art Stuart (traffic officer), Joseph A. Bodeson (farmer), John Williams Garrison (butcher and constable), and Avon Tober Graham (restaurant owner and Ripon’s first chief of police). One of their earlier works took place in 1931. The Chamber helped fund street signs placed at the Golden State Highway and Main Street. The Meyenberg Milk Plant – encouraged by the Chamber – opened in Ripon and was welcomed by the community. A year later, the Chamber put


Lynn Van Dorst was the 1986 Almond Blossom Festival queen.


Walt Funk served as the president of the Ripon Chamber of Commerce for 10 years.

up two large wooden signs, one of each approach to Ripon. The Chamber’s welfare committee stepped in to help the economically disadvantaged in 1933 by providing them with money during those tough times. By 1935, the lot adjacent to the clubhouse (old city hall) was surveyed for a park and was purchased by the Chamber, which

also assisted in the negotiation of a neon sign at the Golden State Highway and Main Street some two years later. The following year, the Chamber put together the first official map of Ripon. Twenty-five hundred, 12-page booklets were also printed about that time, featuring the dairy SEE HISTORY, PAGE 5

Highly likely to Recommend 5 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Knowledgeable, Professional & Friendly... Barb made our home sale process STRESS FREE! If I could give Barb 10 stars, I would... A proud Sponsor of the Northgate Little League - Senior Challenger Division Giants 2022 & 2023

Barb Montalbo REALTOR® • DRE License #01194113

Direct: 209.938.8140

“Where trust becomes friendship.”

735 N. Main St. Manteca, CA 95336

The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival




industry on the cover and encouraging tourism and business investments. The Chamber was instrumental in getting six new streetlights installed in town and the hiring of someone to conduct a census. There are some improvements to the town by the Chamber that remains obvious to this day. In 1943, a property was purchased from Mrs. Davis to improve the approach to Main Street from Highway 99. The property was then deeded to the county. The Water District was formed in 1944, the same year that the Chamber was purchased from the Nourse estate. Perhaps the most formidable time for the organization took place on June 4, 1945. The Chamber drew up the articles of incorporation for the City of Ripon and moved forward in ratifying them. The official seal of the City of Ripon was made possible a few years later thanks to a contest held by the Chamber. In 1946, construction of the four-lane Highway 99 beyond the bridge took place. The Chamber, with an eye for modernization, played a role in having the sewer lines placed under the highway. The deed to the property where the current city hall sits was transferred to the City after 24 years of possession by the Chamber. During the 1950s, the organization set sights on further benefitting the city and shaping the community to what it is today. Included was the donation of funds to form a Recreation Commission, which procured 365 acres for Caswell Park. Another move related to that was when the railroad closed the Southern Pacific Depot in 1958. The Chamber worked to save it by hiring an attorney to fight the decision. The State Department of Budgeting and Planning recognized those rights and had Caswell Memorial State Park designated as part of Ripon. Businesses such as Hayward Poultry Producers and Simpson Lee Papers moved to Ripon thanks to successful efforts of the Chamber. Another big moment for the Chamber was the Olympic Torch passing through town on Feb. 8, 1960. The Chamber board had a plaque and the torch holder placed at Community Center Park for all to enjoy. The inaugural year of the Almond Blossom Festival was 1963. The Chamber hosted the first Main Street Day in 1986 followed by Taste of Ripon, a wine stroll to showcase local businesses founded in 1996. The Chamber continues to create and maintain many events in recent years, including a few that have since become part of the tradition. The Scarecrowfest was established in 2014 – this is a competition among the businesses to decorate and celebrate the fall season. The Christmas Light Parade made its debut in 2016. This was a collaborative effort between the Chamber, the Ripon Consolidated Fire District, and the Ripon Police Department. The following year, the first Bites & Beer stroll took place. The COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 was a struggle for everyone. The City of Ripon along with the Chamber and the community worked in collaboration to secure grants to help the local businesses during these tough times. The history of the Chamber is a colorful one with more to come. According to Donohue, the board will never forget the fundamental objectives of championing “the economic, civic, and social welfare of our community.”


Local scouts join in on the 1994 Almond Blossom Festival Parade.

QUICK ALMOND FACTS  80% of the world’s almonds are grown in California and no other state in the US grows them commercially. The California almond farms span 500 miles of the Central Valley with 6,500 growers — 72% of which are family owned farms. *California is in a major draught and it has affected everyone, especially farmers. The almond board focuses on sustainability and has been working for more than 20 years on research to use water more efficiently. Innovative irrigation and farming practices over the last two decades have led to a 33% decrease in water use per pound of almonds produced.  Almond varieties are “self-incompatible” which means that pollen of one variety doesn’t pollinate itself. Each orchard is planted with at least two, usually three different varieties in adjacent rows to allow for cross-pollination. The farmers rely on bees to move the pollen from one variety to the next. If there are no bees, almonds don’t grow so farmers rent honey bees for a portion of the year — about six weeks while the almond trees are in bloom.

Please join us for a Gospel Meeting

at The Ripon Church of Christ March 9th - 12th, 2023

Speaker: Eddie Cloer from Searcy Arkansas

• Thursday, March 9th @7pm:

• Sunday, March 12th @9:30am:

“Listen to the Blood” • Friday, March 10th @7pm:

“What God Will Always Do!” • Sunday, March 12th @10:30am:

“Ministry of the Resurrection”

“The Second Coming of Christ”

• Saturday, March 11th @7pm:

• Sunday, March 12th @1:30pm:

“Is Baptism Really Essential?”

“The Righteous Teacher”

13397 West Ripon Rd. Ripon, CA 95366 209-599-4452 /

Lux Dermatology

Voted #1 in Dermatology Manteca Readers’ Choice 2021 and 2022!


Let Our Experience Work For You Meet Our Team

Robert Leposavic, MD

Stephen Doggett, MD

Dermatologist Mohs Surgery

Radiation Oncologist Brachytherapy

Joselyn Johnson

Ron Bedford



Medical Services Include: Acne, Rashes, Scar Revision, Skin Cysts, Dandruff, Eczema, Fungal Nail And Toenail Infections, and Psoriasis to Name a Few.

Skin Cancer: Mohs Micrographic Surgery, Brachytherapy and Surgical Excisions.

Cosmetic: Botox, Dermal Fillers, Skin Rejuvenation and Laser Hair Removal.

Call Either Location To Learn More.

296 Cottage Ave. Manteca • 209-624-7006 5757 Pacific Ave. Ste. 228 Stockton • 209-490-5050

Healthy, beautiful skin is possible


The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival

Who needs Chanel No. 5 when you have nature’s perfume in the breeze?


Photo contributed

Briley Perez – a senior at Ripon Christian High School and the reigning Miss Ripon – will relinquish her title to the incoming Almond Blossom Queen to start the Almond Blossom festivities.


Briley Perez will always remember what it was like seeing the Almond Blossom Queen riding in the annual parade. It isn’t every day, Perez remembers thinking, that a real-life princess is in your own city. And this weekend Perez will get her final chance to inspire the next wave of Miss Almond Blossom candidates when she rides in the annual parade to bookend her year as serving the community that she has grown up in and come to love. “I will say the parade has always been a huge things for me – I remember being a little girl and seeing all of the candidates and queen and it’s a fantasy for a little kid to see a reallife princess in your city,” Perez said. “It was very impactful to me from a young age.” Perez, the daughter of Golda and Tim Perez, said that the year that she has spent serving the citizens of Ripon – spending the weekend as the Almond Blossom Queen and then the remainder of the term as Miss Ripon – has grown to love and appreciate Ripon on a much deeper level thanks to her participation in the longstanding tradition. While she had the unique perspective of having attended both Ripon and Ripon Christian High Schools, Perez said that since her family isn’t as entrenched into the fabric of the community as some of the other participants she was able to learn a lot more about the town and what makes it special and unique. “On a grander scale, this has showed me how important the Almond Blossom festival is to the people who live in Ripon – it’s a generational town, and you get to learn about the people and find out that their grandparents grew up here,” Perez said. “These are people that have a generational – a deep family connection – to this town and hearing the stories of people that have flown their grandchildren or extended families in to celebrate this weekend shows how special it is.” A member of the drama department all four years she’s been in high school and three years

as a member of the “Knights Sounds” singing team, Perez said that she’s grateful for the opportunity to serve the community she loves – which allowed her to see the place that she grew up in a completely different light. “I’m so grateful for all of the wonderful blessings and opportunities – it has been such a humbling experience,” Perez said. “The role of Miss Ripon is to serve the community and give back and I think that it’s important to emphasize that – not only in going to events to represent the city, but also in being there for the other candidates – serving as a mentor, helping them understand the process, and see things with different eyes. “I remember where I was at this time last year and now, I get to help calm the nerves of another – it means everything to me.” While lots of cities in the Northern San Joaquin Valley programs like the Almond Queen court, Ripon’s is unique in the fact that the title shifts after the weekend – as does the focus. In reflecting on her time serving the community she loves, Perez said that she began to see the strength of that transition and how it keeps the titleholder focused on the job of service – something that stresses the responsibilities that come along with wearing the sash and crown. “What’s unique about Ripon is it is kind of a dual-title role – for one weekend it’s amazing because you’re the Queen and everybody wants to see the Almond Blossom Queen, but after the weekend you become Miss Ripon and the responsibilities begin to set in. It becomes about being a volunteer and helping in the best ways possible and it’s so much fun. “It’s amazing to see the impact that the role can have if done correctly, and it’s so much fun to see the community and it’s traditions from a different perspective.” Perez is currently awaiting hearing back from colleges and lists both UCLA and UC Davis as her dream schools. To contact Bulletin reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.

2 hours a week = a lifetime of impact 20

njoy nirvana. We are in the sweetest days of the year. And it’s the busiest dates on the calendar for tens of millions of bees. It is part of one of nature’s most blessed unions. Bees zip through nearly naked almond branches to visit small buds just starting to split through the soft wood. In DENNIS a matter of a short time WYATT those buds will open. Editor Sometimes it seems to happen overnight. Skeleton orchards start to shiver after losing the last rays of semi-warmth as the sun slips behind the Diablo Range as winter uses the chill of night to try and prolong nature’s slumber. But then as the sun rises over the snow draped Sierra in the east the light of a new day backlights the most glorious sight ever created by Mother Nature — billions upon billions of delicate white and pink almond blooms bursting everywhere you look. Spring doesn’t simply arrive in the countryside around Manteca, Ripon, and Escalon. It bursts open seemingly all at once but not in an in-your-face way. Rather it caresses the senses. Feast your eyes on delicate creations that make cherry blossoms seem rough by comparison. Touch the delicate beauties and you are suddenly as nervous as a guy holding a newborn baby for the first time. They are so soft and new that you fear you may hurt them. But then the biggest treat comes along. The bees have been busy. As the mercury inches up ever so slightly toward the magical 70 degree mark, the sun’s warmth gently bakes the blossoms creating a delightful scent that is more intoxicating than Chanel No. 5 announcing the arrival of a sweetheart. The air you breathe is filled with delightful reminders that the cold and sometimes gray days of winter were worth every second. But it isn’t until night falls when the warmth of the mid-February day slips away and a slight coolness slip over the land that the real treat begins. On the perfect night, there is an ever-so gentle breeze. The steady stream of air washing ashore from over the Pacific Ocean makes its way across the Altamont Pass and through the meandering Delta to nudge the scent along as a gentle caressing breeze makes its way through orchard after orchard. It is best this time of year to leave your bedroom window ajar before you retire for a late winter slumber even if you still need to bundle against the cold. That’s because there is not a more glorious way to drift off to sleep than taking in breath after breath of the sweetest perfume ever concocted — almond blossoms in bloom. As your body goes into sleep mode and your mind drifts away they help create the sweetest dreams of the year. And if you happen to awake in the middle of the night, your senses led only by your nose make you feel as if you are in Mother Nature’s arms bundled up with covers as you smell the sweet scent of rebirth. And, if you are lucky, the fragrant elixir will wake you in the morn. Who needs to smell the coffee when you can inhale the soft fragrance of almond blossoms? It is little wonder millions of bees have no issue with being as busy as a bee. How can it be work when you get to zip from one almond blossom to another getting




This column is the opinion of editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinions of The Bulletin or 209 Multimedia. He can be reached at dwyatt@


$ Features:


intoxicated with the sweetest smell on earth? Once you’ve taken in the first act of spring in the Northern San Joaquin Valley it is easy to understand how insects that can hurt so much when they sting can produce such a sweet golden treat that we call honey. The days of February are the days that try the souls of almond growers. While we revel in the return of almond blossoms, growers fret about rain and high wind striking at the most inopportune time. The early almond varieties started popping blooms here and there a week ago. Almond growers will tell you this is a week ahead of time. Mother Nature, if she could talk, would likely laugh at such a statement knowing full well that almond blossom time starts always on the terms of the brave buds that give the first signal that the glorious symphony of smells and sights she is cueing up is about to fill the countryside with a blazing celebration of life. It’s a spectacle that makes the great works of arts such as Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” look drab and mechanical. Nothing flows as free or inspires as much as what the almond blossoms and what follows brings to the valley. Forget about waking up and smelling the roses. That’s for people landlocked by asphalt and concrete. Get out and savor the almond blossoms. Drive south or east from Manteca in the coming weeks and roll down your windows. You won’t be disappointed. Better yet park the car, get out, and walk along an orchard’s edge that is in full bloom. Unless you are unfortunate enough to be cursed with an allergy to almond blossoms, there is nothing than man has yet to bottle that can bring as much bliss to your nose. This is the time of year I trade my 2 to 3 mile jog for a 6 to 8 mile excursion into the countryside heading down orchard lined country roads such as Manteca Road, Sedan Avenue, Alice Avenue and Veritas Road not as much to exercise my lungs and heart as it is to lift my soul. In fields where growers still let grass grow in almond orchards, the dew moistened blades you jog pass that form green stripes between rows of white and pink blossoms creates a delightful scent of its own as the month slips closer to March. It’s a decadent treat. Almond blossom time also heralds the start of an endless parade of blooms and scents that the Northern San Joaquin Valley’s Mediterranean climate coaxes out of some of the most fertile soil in the world. By the time March arrives and almond blossoms have reached their crescendo, Mother Nature unleashes the final performance of the production that will lead to the shaking of several billion pounds of nuts up and down the Central Valley when summer draws to a close. The sweet scent is waning as delicate white and pink blossoms start softly falling to the ground. The “Manteca Snow” — or “Ripon Snow” if you live in the self-proclaimed Almond Capital of the World — is the final act that brings down the curtain on the almond blossom season coating the earth with a gentle blanket of blossoms. Enjoy now unfolding in our backyard. It’s heaven on earth.

• Lava Arch Conditioner • Add Tire Gloss for $1 more • TR TRIP IPLE LE Foam • 50% OFF Next Wash within 7 days • Ceramic Coating • Complete Surface Gloss

Download today and receive $500 OFF first purchase.

Unlimited Washes Starting at



$300 OFF

Diamond Wash with coupon.

CODE #0102, Expires 2/28/23.

Clear Drop Car Wash


1195 E. Yosemite Ave. Manteca, CA 95336

(209) 239-1477 Open 7 Days a Week!

The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival



Dr. Debbie Daniels is current board president of the Ripon Chamber of Commerce. The owner of the Ripon Veterinary Hospital, she along with Chamber CEO / President Kelly Donohue accepted a proclamation from the City of Ripon – as presented by Mayor Michael Restuccia at Tuesday’s City Council meeting – publicly congratulating the Chamber’s centennial birthday. In celebration of 100 years, the Chamber was named the official grand marshal of the 61st annual Ripon Almond Blossom Parade scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, along the historic downtown. The Ripon Chamber of Commerce established articles of incorporation dating back to July 1923 – the City of Ripon didn’t become incorporated until 1945. It was Daniels who realized this was an important year for the Chamber to thank Connie Jorgensen of the Ripon Historical Society. Jorgensen showed her the 1923 newspaper article from the Ripon Record about a group of Ripon businessmen who decided to form a chamber of commerce and had this organization incorporated with the state of California. “This was too big an achievement and too big an opportunity not to celebrate,” said Daniels on her board’s decision to honor the Chamber at the 2023 Almond Blossom Festival. She added: “Throughout 2023, we will be recognizing and honoring all those who worked hard to keep our chamber successful and vital for 100 years.” Daniels is a graduate of the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. In 1984, she founded the Ripon Veterinary Hospital and has long been active in the community, and is a past president of both the Chamber and Soroptimist International of Ripon. Daniels also has had a Relay for Life Team for eight years. Other members of the Chamber board are vice-chair Janet McMahon of Realtor-Keller Williams Realty; treasure Chad DeGraff of DeGraff Development Inc.; secretary Kyndra Wilson, owner of The Vine House wine bar & bistro; Darryl Bartels, State Farm Insurance owner; Jeremiah North, special projects coordinator / Ripon Consolidated Fire District / Kid Red Entertainment / owner; Heather Hernandez, owner of Divine Salon; Jan Nowak; Carrie Sweet, owner of Discover Ripon Magazine; Rachel Venema,


President and CEO Kelly Donohue and board President Dr. Debbie Daniels accepts the City of Ripon proclamation honoring the Ripon Chamber of Commerce from Mayor Michael Restuccia.

owner / photographer of Rachael Venema Photography; and retired Ripon Unified School District superintendent Leo Zuber. All share Ripon’s best interest and it shows. “This is the best Chamber that I’ve been associated with,” said Restuccia, a longtime resident. He recognized the Chamber as being “successful in education, promotion, and municipal relationships,” including the establishment of the Ripon Community Center, being instrumental in several economically beneficial businesses relocating to the City, and acquiring 365 acres for Caswell

Memorial State Park. Along with the Almond Blossom Festival, the Chamber also plays host to annual events such as Main Street Day and Taste of Ripon. Restuccia, in reading from the proclamation, said: “With a century of achievement behind it, the Ripon Chamber of Commerce is looking forward with a continued commitment to ensuring a vibrant and prosperous community for future generations.” Staff and board members will be featured as the grand marshal of the parade.

Contributed Contributed

The current Chamber board members, from left, include Jeremiah North, Kyndra Wilson, Rachael Venema, Carlos Blanco, Susan Bunnell, Chad DeGraff, Heather Hernandez, Ed Mulder, and Jan Nowak.

Members of the Chamber staff are Catie Carrel (membership director), Anna Newburg (office manager), Heather Cristalinas (marketing director), and Kelly Donohue (president and CEO).


(M) 209.604.1799 • @MS.LAURA .LOU LCAT R I N A@ PM Z .CO M • W W W. LCAT R I N A . PM Z .CO M CAL DRE #01961756


"Relationships matter, make them count"

JEFF STEVES BRETT STEVES “What Drives You, Drives US!”


44,275 Price before dicount: 44,275 PRO COMP OFF-ROAD 6" LIFT +$6,920 $weetheart $avings: -$2,000 Customer Cash: -$1,250 Select Market Purchase Bonus Cash: -$1,000 $


Rear Wheel Drive

SALES HOURS: Mon-Fri 8am-7pm, 1285 EAST “F” STREET, OAKDALE Sat 9am-5pm, CLOSED SUNDAY Toll Free 1-800-660-2261


STEVES Net Price



Closed Sunday for our employees and their family, but you can still come and browse around.

Vin#NZ627498 Stock#22T0618


The Bulletin-Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Almond Blossom Festival

NATURAL PATH WELLNESS CENTER • Skincare products • Unique gifts • Memberships

FEBRUARY SPECIALS • Valentine Couples Massage Therapeutic massage with Rose/Lavender Foot Salt Scrub $140/60 min ($190 Value) or $220/90 min ($270 Value) Members: $130/60 min ($160 Value) or $210/90 min ($240 Value)

Add-ons to Massage: • Sparkling Cider in champagne flute, fresh strawberries, Belgian Chocolate $20 • Infared Sauna immediately following 30 min - $45

• Be Our Valentine Single’s Massage

Therapeutic massage with Rose/Lavender Foot Salt Scrub $70/60 min ($95 Value) or $110/90 min ($135 Value) Members: $65/60 min ($80 Value) or $105/90 min ($120 Value)

Add-ons to massage: • Sparkling Cider in champagne flute, fresh strawberries, Belgian Chocolate $10 • Infrared Sauna immediately following 30 min - $35

• Ultra-Hydration Chocolate Strawberry Facial

Naturally boost hydration & replenish the skin’s moisture barrier in 60 minutes for smooth, glowing, and radiant skin. $110/60 min ($135 Value) Members: $80/60 min ($95 Value)

Add-ons to facial: • Microdermabrasion & Rose/Lavender hand scrub followed by warm hand paraffin - $25/15 min • Red LED Light therapy - $15/15 min

All Eminence products 10% off All Mtn. Rose Herbs 10% off

Voted Best Day Spa and Best Massage, 2022

CELEBRATING 10 YEARS Saturday, February 25th, 2023 9:00 am - 11:30 am Special Drawings For Services & Products

10th Anniversary Specials for the Day Purchase on February 25, 9:00 am - 11:30 am

Anniversary Special #1 (Package of 10)

• 2-60 min Swedish/Therapeutic Massages • 2-60 min NPWC Facials • 2-30 min Infrared Saunas • 2-30 min Ionic Foot Detoxes • 2 Eminence Mangosteen Hand Cream • 10 items $558 Value for $438 Anniversary Special #2 (Package of 10)

• 2-90 min Swedish/Therapeutic Massages • 2-60 min NPWC Facials • 2-30 min Infrared Saunas • 2-30 min Ionic Foot Detoxes • 2-30 min Reflexology Foot Massage • 10 items $660 Value for $540 Detox Special #3 (Packages of 10) Choice of:

• 10-30 min Ionic Foot Detoxes • 10-30 min Infrared Sauna • 5-30 min Foot Detox/5-30 min Sauna • Each Pkg $400 Value for $300 We bring therapists and products to one location to help guide you on your journey to Being your Best YOU!

303 W Main Steet, Ripon, CA 95366 209-599-WELL (9355) •

Turn static files into dynamic content formats.

Create a flipbook
Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.