Lovingly Left Behind

By Margaret Snider  |  2016-10-28

Trish Medina, coordinator for this year’s Mass Halloween Art Abandonment Project, is shown with one of her paintings at a previous Rancho Cordova City Hall art show. --Photos courtesy Trish Medina

Masses of Art to be Abandoned Locally

Is abandoned art doomed to be forever forsaken? According to Trish Medina, coordinator for this year’s Mass Halloween Art Abandonment, the answer is a resounding “no.” Medina is one of the founding members of the group putting on the event, RCAFE (Rancho Cordova Art for Everyone), and the Cordova Community Council is sponsoring it. Numerous local artists will place their own original works of art in various public places in and around Rancho Cordova, to be found and enjoyed by whoever comes across them.

“I believe strongly in volunteering in the community around me,” Medina said. “If you want change and good things to happen, you have to be an instrument in that process.”

Victoria Smith, local artist and art teacher, also a founding member of RCAFE and leader in the Rancho Cordova artist community, helped put on the first mass abandonment in Rancho Cordova in August 2014. She was inspired, she said, by Robyn Slakey’s abandonment projects and those of other artists.

Slakey, who lives in Carmichael and most recently was jurist of the Rancho Cordova Fall Art show, is an artist and photographer. Slakey had heard about urban art, created and enjoyed by people who can’t afford to buy expensive art. “I didn’t want to do the graffiti,” Slakey said, “because, you know, I didn’t want to get arrested.” When she and her husband were on a road trip, she came across a nasty note about Obama on a bathroom wall. “It got me really upset, so I took it down and stuck up a (painting of a) cupcake.”

Since then, Slakey has continued to drop her artistic renditions of cupcakes in various spots. This year, since she is a K-8 art teacher in Gold River, she is having her students paint cupcakes. Slakey will give them to Smith for abandonment on Halloween. “It’s just a really nice thing,” Slakey said. “That’s what I try to do with the art is to try to make it happy.”

The abandoned art work is not limited to paintings and drawings, Medina said. “We encourage everyone to share whatever they are creative in: sculptures, knitted items, poems, photography... We are encouraging everyone to abandon art all day Halloween, not just at night where it might be missed.”

The art is intended to lift the spirits of the finder, who can keep it, pass it on, or re-abandon it. “Because we post on Facebook and Instagram we have a worldwide reach with our project,” Smith said. Many artists work all year long on small art to abandon, and make it part of their regular work. “We invite artists to make photos of the art where it’s abandoned, or selfies with the art they made and post it to Facebook and Instagram. We hope finders will send selfies with their found art to the Facebook or Instagram links on the back of the art.” Some artists have already started putting out their work, so look around carefully now and on Halloween.

Information about the artists, the art, the project, and reports of found items can be seen on Facebook under The Abandoned Art Project/RCAFE, and on Instagram #theabandonedartprojectrcafe, or @cordovacouncil. If you find some art and would like to report it, you can e-mail abandonedartmail@gmail.com.

Foster Youth to Shine at Philanthropy Luncheon

Source: Kristin Thébaud Communications  |  2016-10-28

Local foster youth walk the runway in last year’s United Way Women in Philanthropy Luncheon fashion show. 
--Photo courtesy United Way

Local residents can help foster youth at United Way’s 15th Annual Women in Philanthropy Luncheon from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Nov. 9 at Memorial Auditorium, 1515 J Street, Sacramento. The event, sponsored by AT&T, will include a fashion show, gourmet lunch, presentations by local foster youth and an announcement about the future of the group. Tickets are $75-$125 and can be purchased at www.yourlocalunitedway.org.

“We have an entertaining and heartfelt program planned for this year including stories from foster youth, successes from the program, a fashion show and a big announcement about Women in Philanthropy’s exciting future,” said Stephanie Bray, president and CEO, United Way California Capital Region. “This is an amazing opportunity for local foster youth to sit side by side with some of the region’s most powerful women and community members who care deeply about their future.”

United Way’s Women in Philanthropy brings local women together to end poverty for local foster youth by helping them become financially prepared for life after foster care. This focus is part of the Square One Project, United Way’s 20-year promise to significantly increase the number of local students who graduate from high school ready for success in college and beyond. Through nine decades of work and research across the region, the local United Way now believes ending poverty starts in school and is working to ensure kids meet important milestones to prepare for success in college. To learn more about United Way’s Women in Philanthropy, visit www.yourlocalunitedway.org.

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A Pipeline to Sustainability

Source: Aerojet Rocketdyne Communications  |  2016-10-28

The American River Pipeline Conveyance Project (Project), conceived in 2011, is an example of regional partners coming together to solve water supply reliability issues at a local level.

The Project was developed to provide a replacement water supply for Golden State Water Company’s (Golden State Water) customers in Gold River and parts of the City of Rancho Cordova utilizing existing treatment capacity at Carmichael Water District’s (CWD) Water Treatment Plant. The project enables CWD to divert and deliver up to 4.5 million gallons of water per day.  The replacement water supply originates from the remediated Aerojet Rocketdyne groundwater discharged to the American River at Buffalo Creek.

Longer-term regional benefits include reduced groundwater pumping during wet years, which will help better manage the underlying groundwater basin.  Working with the Regional Water Authority, a portion of the project funding was procured from the State under the Governor’s Water Action Plan (Proposition 84).  The project is one of 17 Sacramento-area projects awarded $9.7 million in California Department of Water Resources grants in 2014 for projects designed to help shore up the area’s water supply reliability during the drought and beyond.

“The American River Pipeline Project and other grant-funded projects in the greater Sacramento region are outstanding examples of DWR’s commitment to addressing California’s water challenges with Integrated Regional Water Management where partnerships, like this one, are formed to work together to develop solutions which will both address drought challenges and long-term water reliability” said California Department of Water Resources Deputy Director for Integrated Water Management, Gary Bardini.

This project adds to an evolving network that ties many of the region’s water providers together via pipes to improve supply reliability for all of us,” said Golden State Water Company Senior Vice President of Regulated Utilities, Denise Kruger. “In times of drought or water supply emergencies, we now have the ability to transport water to neighboring communities or receive additional supplies for our customers in Rancho Cordova and Gold River.”

For additional information regarding the American River Pipeline Project, please contact Carmichael Water District at (916) 483-2452.

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Taking Back a Promise to Our Vets

Source: Office of Senator Nielsen  |  2016-10-28

Senator Nielsen on Forced Repayment by Vets

Chair of the California State Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber), telephoned the Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), and members of the California Congressional Delegation to urge them to take action to end the aggressive collections of enlistment bonuses that were granted to California Army National Guard Members.

The Army provided these bonuses to our Guard Soldiers as an incentive to reenlist and redeploy into combat zones. Senator Nielsen issued the following statement:

“Our service men and women who made the extraordinary commitment to extend their active duty deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan did so with honor.

“This action by the federal government is outrageous and must be corrected immediately, as numerous veterans have been devastated financially by these collection actions.

“This is a betrayal of our Soldiers. I am confident that Chairman Thornberry and members of Congress will right this wrong.

“In the coming days, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks), Chair of the Assembly Veterans Affairs Committee, and I will work together on a bipartisan, bicameral communication to the Congress to resolve this problem.”

Senator Nielsen represents the Fourth Senate District, which includes the counties of Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Tehama and Yuba.

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Special Report on ‘Body Art Ink’ at Work

Source: Pacific Staffing  |  2016-10-27

Generational change is often expressed in how styles affect people as fads come and go.  How your appearance affects a career may not be front of mind, but first impressions are important in work. Employment often means change to meet company or corporate culture your career path requires. While clothing or hair styles are easy to change ‘body art’ like full sleeve, facial tattoos, piercing and ear gauging are more permanent. When asked ‘Is visible body art a positive or a negative in applicants?’ Sacramento’s top regional firms shared their opinions on this fad. Just ten percent (10%) felt body art was a positive in job applicants. The majority, sixty-five percent (65%) say body art is a negative!

Some didn’t answer, and over twenty percent (20%) also say that hiring applicants with body art might depend ‘on the job and the person’. When asked specifically, fifty-six percent (56%) say full sleeve tattoos were acceptable, but most placed them in field or non-public contact jobs, or required they be covered. Sixty-two percent (62%) polled say facial tattoos and ear gauging were unacceptable.

In anecdotal comments hiring professionals polled by Pacific Staffing say ‘covering it’, ‘extreme content’, specific safety and sanitary issues would also be factors. Contacted directly by phone between August 19 and September 22 some report having no formal policy regarding body art at work. However, those surveyed also were unanimous in declaring violent, gang-related images and other extreme tattoos, facial piercings or ear stretching/gauging as inappropriate for the workplace.

While four percent (4%) of Construction/Property Development companies plan to reduce workforce in October, November and December, primarily for seasonal change, sixty-seven percent (67%) of Sacramento’s top firms are hiring through the end of the year. Every Retail firm polled is hiring!

Workforce expansion continues in the fourth quarter and hiring motivated by attrition forty-seven percent (47%) of regional demand. Fourteen percent (14%) also say seasonal needs are part of their hiring motivation.

High demand for sales crosses all industry sectors with customer service, IT, RN’s, Class A drivers, accounting/finance, general office and cooks also sought by regional employers.

Pacific Staffing discovered wages, retention and qualified applicants as concerns of regional employers. Some also say benefit enrollments, minimum wage changes and specific skills are challenges in the last quarter of 2016.

Report by Pacific Staffing.  For more information, employment blogs & market surveys go to www.pacificstaffing.com.

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Folsom Lake College Mens’ and Womens’ Soccer and Womens’ Volleyball Update

Source: Ron Richardson, Folsom Lake College  |  2016-10-27

Freshman Mia Evans was a Falcon force on the defensive side. 
--Photo by Rose Shoen

Women’s Soccer
With a Friday afternoon home match against Big 8 Conference 2nd place Diablo Valley College, the Falcons had hoped to avenge an early-season loss to the Vikings and also make up some ground in the Big 8 standings. But both teams were intent on shutting down their opponent and the intensity was evident throughout the physical match that ended in a scoreless tie. FLC goalkeeper Aubrey Hall earned her fifth shutout of the season with six saves, but the Viking defense was just as impenetrable. With just five matches remaining in the regular season, the Falcons (5-3-3, 10-3-3 overall) remain in fourth place in the Big 8, just one point behind third-place Delta – whom they’ll face on Friday in Stockton – and four behind second-place DVC.

Men’s Soccer
Facing the state’s second-ranked team, the Falcons hosted undefeated Fresno City in a non-conference match on Friday evening at Falcon Stadium. It was apparent from the start that the Falcons were not going to lay down for this match; in fact the home team dominated possession time throughout most of the first half. The only goal of the match came in the 32nd minute of play when Fresno’s Jonathon Rodriguez managed to find the net for a 1-0 Rams’ victory. FLC returns to Big 8 play this week with matches against Santa Rosa on Tuesday and American River on Friday night.

Women’s Volleyball
The Falcons got back on track as they ended their brief 3-match losing streak with a convincing 4-set (3-1) victory over Santa Rosa on Friday night at Falcon Gym. Other than a second-set funk that cost them the sweep, the Falcons clearly were the better team, winning 25-14, 24-26, 25-17, and 25-19. Setter Isabel Mason provided 36 assists and added 27 digs to lead the team. Outside hitter Kylie Haverson contributed with 17 kills while Kate Nicknig added 10. The Falcons remain in fifth place in the Big 8 standings and are just one game behind fourth-place American River, who happen to be Friday’s opponent.

Upcoming Sports Schedule
(home matches in bold)

Tues Oct 25      Women’s Soccer at American River, 3:30 pm
        Men’s Soccer vs Santa Rosa at FLC, 6:00 pm

Wed Oct 26       Women’s Volleyball at Modesto, 6:30 pm

Fri Oct 28  Women’s Soccer at Delta, 3:30 pm
        Men’s Soccer at American River, 6:00 pm

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Farming Without Getting Dirty

By Alona Thomas  |  2016-10-27

The farm container. 
--Photo by Alona Thomas

F. Scott Fitzgerald is quoted, “I care not who hoes the lettuce of my country if I can eat salad!” There’s not much dirt and no hoeing at Rainsville Farms and the salad greens are the best. As a bit of a lettuce snob – it needs to be fresh, crisp & very clean. This farm delivers on all the above and is located on a cement slab.

Fred Chevaz, a Data Service Manager, retired after 33 years from VSP Vision Care. He wanted out of the corporate world and was looking for a place for his energies and his expertise. After researching franchises that did not give him the control he desired, he returned to his family roots in farming. His grandfather was a lifelong farmer in Rainsville, New Mexico raising his family of nine children. Fred always had a backyard garden and loved giving his crops to neighbors, colleagues and friends. His research led him to Freight Farms in Boston that provides completely outfitted containers for hydroponic farming. This company founded in 2010 “manufactures high volume crop production units made from up-cycled freight containers”. The vision is to provide a perfect environment in a small footprint 365 days a year regardless of climate.

The 40’ refrigerated container comes complete with all the tools to farm. There is not a hoe or shovel in sight, but there is Bluetooth capability, instruments that measure the nutrients in the water, a system that controls the water, LED lights and a great big panel that probably takes an IT person to manage. The container was shipped from Boston and is now parked off of Douglas Rd. in Rancho Cordova. Inside red and blue lights are on at appropriate times which allow the best growth for the lettuce. Fred spends about 10 hours a week on his farm and is able to manage it daily from his home.

He begins with pelleted seeds that almost have 100% germination. There are six varieties of Butter lettuce including Red Cross, Selanova, Green, Red, Green Oak leaf and Alkindus. Fred also has Basil and Mini Romaine. The seeds once sprouted are transferred to towers hanging vertically in the controlled air temperature of 62 degrees. The system uses 300 gallons of water a month as it recycles through the towers. A quarter of the farm is harvested each week and so there is a constant rotation of crops.

This enterprise only began in July of this year. Chefs love having access to fresh micro greens that are delivered within in a few miles of the farm. Marriot and Claim Stake Brewery have already signed on. This is a family company with his son providing graphic design and web management. His 10-year-old twins help him plant the seeds. His farm is the only the second in the state after Google. He is planning on adding two more containers as we all become more conscious of where our food comes from.

Alona’s hobby is food and all the fun that it brings. Email alonat@comcast.net

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Rally Gives Cordova Football Huge SVC Win

By Mike Bush  |  2016-10-27

Cordova running back Deante McCullough, 21, rushes for some of his 222 yards. He also scored three touchdowns in the Lancers’ 40-14 win over El Dorado, and now occupy first place in the SVC with a 3-0 record. 
--Photo by Rick Sloan

Three turnovers seemed like it could haunt the Cordova High School football team.

But in a huge Sierra Valley Conference home game against El Dorado, the Lancers enjoyed the tricks and treats in the fourth quarter that led to a 40-14 win over the Cougars at Lancers Stadium last Friday.

The win launches Cordova into sole possession of first place in the SVC at 3-0 and 6-2 overall. El Dorado, which beat Liberty Ranch 27-24 two weeks ago, and the Lancers’ next opponent this Friday, goes to 2-1 and 6-2.

The Lancers led 13-0 at halftime. But the visiting Cougars scored two touchdowns in the third quarter to take a 14-13 lead. Then in the final quarter, the game changed when Lancer running back Kelechi Njoku scored the go-ahead touchdown on a 2-yard touchdown for a 21-14 lead.

“What we wanted to do is hang onto the ball,” said Cordova head coach Darren Nill of the fourth quarter. “Those turnovers were keeping the game close.”

Cordova had two fumbles lost inside the Cougars’ 30-yard line, plus a fumble in the first half that kept the game close until the final quarter.

“The first part of the game was feeling each other out,” Nill said. “We knew it was going to be a tight game. El Dorado is an excellent coached team.”

From his defensive end spot, Njoku recorded a key sack on the Cougars’ next offensive drive in the fourth quarter, and one of four in the game. That led to a Cougars’ punt. Then Cordova scored three more times that led to bust opening a close game into a blowout.

“We knew that we were going to be able to run,” Nill said. “They were overplaying the pass a little bit. We went ahead and made the decision to just go ahead and jam it down their throats, and luckily it worked out for us.”

The numbers back the Lancers’ success on the ground. Cordova had 37 carries for 304 yards on the ground. The Lancers finished with 522 total offensive yards. El Dorado had only 87 yards on 33 attempts, and 286 total offensive yards.

“Luckily, our run game just took over in the fourth,” Nill said.

Leading the Lancers’ ground attack was running back Deante McCullough, who had 22 carries for 222 yards and three touchdowns.

Contributing toward the Lancers’ touchdowns in the game was running back Terrill Johnson, who scored on a 23-yard run. Wide receiver Alvin Banks had a big night at six receptions for 159 yards, plus a touchdown.

Cordova quarterback Xavier Johnson completed 11-of-22 passes for 188 yards, plus one touchdown and interception.

“If we put together our offense, along with our defense, that’s how we’re capable of playing,” Nill said.

On defense, Cordova linebacker Yusef Pugh had 10 tackles. Middle linebacker Kenneth Haney followed with eight, Njoku seven and Johnson, plus defensive back Tyreke Tate, linebacker Michael Gonzalez, defensive back Bryan Estrada and defensive tackle Fidel Romero had five each.

Tonight, Friday, at Warriors Stadium in Galt, Cordova takes on Liberty Ranch (2-1 in the SVC, 6-2), which posted a 14-0 win over Rosemont. A Lancers win over the Hawks would secure a share of the SVC title. However, a Liberty Ranch win would create a three-way tie for first place between the Hawks, Lancers and El Dorado, should it beat Galt (2-1 in the SVC, 5-3) tonight.

In the frosh/soph game, Cordova remained undefeated in the SVC at 3-0 with an 18-16 win over El Dorado. The Lancers are 3-5 overall.

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Season Ends at Divisional Tournament for Cordova Linkers

By Mike Bush  |  2016-10-27

Cordova’s Mackailee Lawrence putts during an SVC match at the Cordova Golf Course earlier this month. Lawrence was one of three Lancer linkers who competed at the section’s Division IV Golf Tournament earlier this week. 
--Photo by Rick Sloan

On Monday, three Cordova High School girls golfers took their game to a challenging course in the Merced area.

Competing at the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section/Les Schwab Division IV Golf Tournament at the Rancho Del Rey Golf Club in Atwater, the Lancers’ Angela Jones, Kearry Lopez and Mackailee Lawrence were part of the tournament that had nearly 200 linkers from various medium-size schools in the section competing. An opportunity to place high and compete at the section’s Masters meet, which will take place at The Reserves at Spanos Park in Stockton, was on the line.

The course, according to Cordova head coach Mark Gribskov, had thick unmowed rough, plus numerous ponds and bunkers. That, naturally, didn’t stop Jones and Lopez, both of whom fired a 105 at the par 72 course. Lawrence carded a 126.

“Only three girls shot in the high 70s,” said Gribskov of linkers who had low scores on the day. “A few more in the 80s, slightly more in the 90 and more than half of the field of 54 golfers shot over 100.”

Despite not advancing to the Masters, Gribskov is proud of the trio’s accomplishments in post-season, as well as in Sierra Valley Conference action during the regular season. Cordova took fourth place at the conference’s tournament earlier this month.

“Our three ladies made a very respectable showing down in Atwater,” Gribskov said.

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Halloween Candy Buyback Saves Teeth and Treats Troops

Story and photos by Margaret Snider  |  2016-10-26

The week after Halloween, dentist Jose Juarez will be buying back Halloween candy and donating it to U.S. troops through Operation Gratitude. He is shown here in the “enchanted forest” with three of his four daughters: Yesenia, (right), Vida and Marlena. Oldest daughter Adeliana, was at school at the time of the photo.

For those who dread seeing their children gobble down all that Halloween candy, pediatric dentist Jose Juarez has an alternative. He will buy back up to five pounds of candy at $1 per pound and send it in a care package to our troops via Operation Gratitude—and include toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss as well. His office at 2340 Sunrise Blvd., Suite 25, in Rancho Cordova will accept the candy during office hours Monday through Friday from November 1 through November 10.

The mission of Operation Gratitude is “to lift the spirits and meet the evolving needs of our active duty and veteran communities, and provide volunteer opportunities for all Americans to express their appreciation to members of our Military.”

This is not the first time Juarez has participated in the buyback/donation program. He also collected donations last year at his Rancho Cordova location. He is hoping to exceed last year’s drive that collected over 155 pounds of candy.

Juarez’s grandfather was a major in the Army, and office practice manager Danielle Mendoza has had several family members in the military. Mendoza’s father was in the Marines, and a brother and a sister in the Army; her brother is still on active duty. “They’ve actually received those boxes from the candy buyback,” Mendoza said. “I can tell you right now, from their experience, it’s like gold to them.”

Mendoza said that on the Operation Gratitude website Smile Kingdom Dental was the only participating dentist listed in Rancho Cordova.

For any questions, please call Juarez’s office at (916) 852-8510. For more information on Operation Gratitude and how you can help our troops, please see www.operationgratitute.com.

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