Calling Kids, Canines and the Young-at-Heart…
SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Plans are afoot for the Midtown Association to present the crowd-favorite Midtown Halloween Festival & Pooch Parade on Saturday, October 27, 2018, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Marshall Park (915 27th Street). Sponsored by the Sutter District – with restaurants that include BarWest, Biba, Blue Cue, Centro Cocina Mexicana, Harlow’s, INK Eats & Drinks, Paragary’s Midtown & Red Rabbit Kitchen & Bar – the canine-friendly event is highlighted by the much-anticipated “pooch parade” scheduled to take place at 2:30 p.m. that day. Four-legged friends will strut by on stage while competing in an entertaining costume contest that will include playful prizes for the winning pooches.
The playful Midtown Mascot will be on-site as will the ever-popular mobile off-leash “Pop-Up Dog Park” to encourage canine-friendly communication for pooches 30 pounds or less (due to the structural limits of the fencing). Plus, a variety of free family-friendly activities will be available that include the following: face painting by Fancy Figments; a deluxe rainbow castle jump house with a basketball hoop; hands-on arts and crafts; and entertaining live music from The Hoots that is sponsored by Republic Services. Also, photo-friendly pet backdrops will be available along with a fun pop-up portrait board.
Early that day, special and spirited activities will be available at the Midtown Farmers Market that takes place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on 20th at J Street and extends beyond K Street. Costumes are encouraged and children of all ages are invited to join the fun. Then, many business near J, K and 24th Streets will participate in “Midtown Trick-or-Treat” by providing goodies for children in costume from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. that day.
“All year long, we’re excited to offer an inspired variety of creative and fun events in Midtown that are both family and pet friendly,” said Emily Baime Michaels, Executive Director of the Midtown Association. “And we’re especially thrilled to showcase our four-legged friends for this Halloween Festival & Pooch Parade that is so incredibly popular with the Midtown community.”
The Halloween Festival & Pooch Parade, Pop-Up Dog Park and the Midtown Farmers Market are presented and supported by the Midtown Association, which is committed to ensuring Midtown remains a thriving center for culture, creativity and vibrancy. Midtown is both walkable and bike-friendly with parking available in nearby garages located at 1801 L Street or the East End Garage on 17th Street between L & Capitol plus various lots throughout Midtown. For more information about Midtown Sacramento, how to get around, special events and the Midtown Association, please visit www.exploremidtown.org or follow on social media – Facebook at www.facebook.com/exploremidtown/ and @ExploreMidtown on Instagram and Twitter.
The mission of the Midtown Association (MA) is to create a center for culture, creativity and vibrancy in Sacramento’s urban core. For more information about MA, please, call 916-442-1500 or visit www.exploremidtown.org
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Utility poles covered with signs and notices for political candidates, lost animals, yard sales and events present serious hazards for utility workers. This is a particular problem during election season.
Nails, staples, tacks, and screws used to post signs can cause serious injury to lineworkers who climb the wooden utility power poles every day. These items are especially hazardous when the poles are climbed during bad weather to restore power during storms and at night.
When the signs fall off or are removed, the fasteners often remain in the pole, causing lineworkers to get cut or injured. Nails and staples can obstruct climbing gear, which can cause workers to slip or fall as they climb. Even the tiniest puncture in lineworkers’ rubber gloves can expose them to severe shock from power lines.
When advertising for a political candidate, lost pet, garage sale or other event, please do not post signs on utility poles.
RANCHO CORDOVA, CA (MPG) - As part of its commitment to the community, SMUD is hosting a free community resource fair to ensure the success of seniors in the community. Seniors and their families are invited to learn about caregiving resources; accident prevention; fraud prevention; legal assistance; health and wellness; financial assistance; and, home modifications. Register today for free breakfast and resources.
WHAT: Community Resource Fair Celebrating Seniors
WHERE: SMUD Customer Service Center: 6301 S Street, Sacramento
WHEN: Saturday, September 29, 2018 from 8 a.m.—Noon
REGISTER: SMUD.org/Learn or 916-732-6738
CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - September’s luncheon opened with the Pledge of Allegiance before Chaplain Debra Fontes and Citrus Heights Police Chief Ron Lawrence spoke in remembrance of 9/11.
“Let us remember what was lost on this day seventeen years ago, but even more importantly, we remember that this day is a reminder of our nation’s unity, resilience, and strength,” said Fontes. “May all of our endeavors here today make us stronger tomorrow.”
Chief Lawrence said that “this is the first year that we’ll have seniors graduating from high school who were just being born when that tragedy occurred, which means that the next generation will not know what that moment was like. Those of us in this room probably distinctly remember where we were, what we were doing, and what we felt like. And for a few brief weeks after that tragic incident this country was united like I have never experienced in my life.”
“The truth is, it’s not going take a national, a political party, or some big movement to make things better in our country, it’s going to take communities just like ours right here in Citrus Heights banding together and having those moments of clarity of who we are, what we’re about, and what brings us together as a city.”
Following the introduction of dignitaries and sponsors, Sgt. Wes Herman spoke about the newly created Mesa Verde High School Pathway Program, a “multi-year educational opportunity” for high school students to focus on academics and career opportunities. “For eighteen weeks, they get an opportunity to explore the different fields,” he said. “After that, they have an eighteen week internship in our police department or a neighboring department where they’ll get hands-on experience.” Currently, 18 students, many from outside of Citrus Heights, are enrolled.
Presentations about the Citrus Heights Police Foundation by Lt. Chad Morris and Student Connect by Haley Reid followed. A motorcycle skills challenge and safety fair on September 29 will benefit the foundation. Backpacks and other school supplies will be distributed on the same day at Advent Lutheran Church.
Education Committee Chair Rosa Umbach introduced the CHPD Youth and Family Services Unit - Sgt. Wesley Herman, Juvenile Detective William Dunning, School Resource Officer Barron Cox, School Resource Office Jacob Davis, JDEP Coordinator Judie Cooper, and PAL Coordinator Kendahl Smallwood. Certificates were presented by the Citrus Heights City Council and the offices of Congressman Ami Bera, Senator Jim Nielsen, Assemblyman Ken Cooley, and Supervisor Sue Frost.
Chief Lawrence presented the “State of the Police Department” report. “We could not do our job unless our community has complete faith and trust in your police department. This community loves our police department, and we love you.”
Lawrence praised the professionalism of the men and women in the twelve-year-old department. The budget, he said, has come in at or under for the eight years he has been chief. Crime rates are down overall and the trend continues. He addressed the importance of Citrus Heights having its own “full service police department.”
Initiatives during the past 18 months include a regional approach to homelessness, drone program, and housing inspection unit. CHPD is on two area task forces, partners with WEAVE, recently secured a $450,000 three-year grant to help pay for the program, and operates a mobile crisis team three days a week which is expected to grow to daily service.
Jonathan Glatz, representative of Assemblyman Ken Cooley’s office, presented Chief Ron Lawrence with an Assembly Resolution. “On behalf of Assemblyman Cooley, I want to thank Chief Lawrence and the members of the Citrus Heights Police Department for all the work that they do on a daily basis keeping us safe and for the sacrifices they make to the people of Citrus Heights.”
Chief Lawrence accepted on behalf of the department and recognized the City Council. “Your support means a lot. We could not do what we do without you.”
For additional information about the Citrus Heights Chamber of Commerce, visit www.chchamber.com. For additional information about the Citrus Heights Police Department, visit www.citrusheights.net/222/Police. For additional information about the motorcycle skills challenge, visit www.sunrisemallonline.com/event/traffic-safety-day-and-police-motorcycle-skills-challenge/2145510611.
CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - Back in 2017, the Sunrise MarketPlace Business Improvement District (BID) joined with Sunrise Mall on an ambitious idea to bring a variety of exciting events to the City of Citrus Heights. The plan was to develop a Pop-Up Stadium that would be located at Sunrise Mall and would generate business by attracting more visitors to the area for entertainment, cultural, and sporting events. The city approved the idea, and the project was granted $300,000 in Economic Development funding.
The stadium was originally scheduled to “pop up” in the spring of 2019. But unfortunately, Sunrise Mall recently canceled the plans for the Pop-Up Stadium. In an email, Kathilynn Carpenter, executive director of Sunrise MarketPlace BID, stated, “Sunrise Mall has recently advised us that, given the mall’s current state of affairs, they are unable to commit to the Pop-Up Stadium as originally planned.”
The terms of Sunrise Mall’s commitment to this project included providing the location for the stadium (the former tennis courts/concerts stadium area) through 2021 and annual contributions (in the form of cash as well as goods and services) for operations and programming.
Carpenter said, “As there is no comparable space (with existing electrical infrastructure, parking for event patrons, etc.) in the District, this decision effectively puts an end to the project.” Because Sunrise MarketPlace BID can no longer fulfill the terms of the grant agreement with the city, they have returned the $300,000 received in funding for this project.
At the time that Sunrise Mall withdrew from the agreement, Sunrise MarketPlace BID had spent less than $5,000 on the project, most of which was in staff time and production. So while the financial loss was not particularly significant, there were substantial time and resources output in the planning and preparation for the project.
When asked if Sunrise Mall has offered any further explanation for the current state of affairs that caused them to withdraw from the plan, Carpenter replied, “No, we have not received additional information from the mall. And, I don’t have any information on the current state of affairs.”
Carpenter is confident that Sunrise Mall disclosed their intent to cancel the plans as soon as they could, stating, “I would assume the mall advised us of their inability to participate in the project as soon as they became aware of it.” So while it appears that Sunrise Mall entered into the plan in good faith and did not unnecessarily delay this revelation, they have yet to offer a more detailed explanation for canceling this potentially lucrative project that had so much support among local residents.
Spinoso Real Estate Group, which is based out of New York, acquired ownership of Sunrise Mall in 2015. Spinoso’s website showcases their decades of experience in mall acquisition, stating, “Through careful analysis, we can determine the strengths and weaknesses of a particular mall, as well as develop an achievable vision of what can be done to create value.” In an email to Spinoso, they were asked to offer a detailed explanation of why they backed out of the stadium plans, and if commitments to the Pop-Up Stadium project (such as the location and cash contributions) would have potentially interfered with future redevelopment plans. As of press time, Spinoso had not responded to the request for additional information.
Now that the plans for the Pop-Up Stadium have been canceled, Carpenter was asked about the upcoming projects that Sunrise MarketPlace BID is pursuing. She replied, “We have focused aggressively on ‘turning the ship,’ so to speak, and working on new strategies for 2019. Three things already in the works will receive more funding and emphasis: Magical Moments holiday events, June 2019 BeefFest, and 20th Anniversary activities. We premiered Magical Moments in 2017; there will be four events around the district that invoke the magic of the holiday season, creating memories and traditions for our guests. The BeerFest will be a new event here in the District featuring specialty craft beer tasting, food, and entertainment. In 2019, we’ll be celebrating our 20th Anniversary with activities all year long, including new banners and Facebook giveaways.”
Although the cancelation of the Pop-Up Stadium is a disappointment, Sunrise MarketPlace BID is looking to the future and moving forward, implementing new and exciting projects in the area. Carpenter said, “Sunrise MarketPlace will continue to do what is has done for the past 19 years and strongly focus on improving the economic vitality of the district by driving traffic and generating positive awareness. We will continue to activate space in the district with special events and other activities. We will continue to focus on our mission of providing value and benefit to the properties with the BID.”
Successful Leaders Are Made Here
CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - It’s 6:15 a.m. Thursday morning. As the meeting room at Perko’s Café Grill begins to slowly fill up it is obvious those arriving are there for a purpose. After the cobwebs have been shaken off with a good cup of coffee and greetings exchanged, the Pledge of Allegiance is recited and the fun begins. This is Sunrise Center Toastmasters.
This scenario is repeated day and night throughout the United States and internationally as men, women and young adults of all ages, different cultures, professions, interests and life experience come together as part of Toastmasters International. They are there to learn how to become better communicators at their job, other organizations and in their personal relationships.
Toastmasters International (TI) is a nonprofit, educational organization that operates clubs worldwide to promote public speaking communication, and leadership skills. Members give speeches, make presentations and do projects, continually challenging themselves to improve. Impromptu speaking, evaluations and mentoring are all important components of the program.
Sunrise Center Toastmasters was founded in 1976 by a small group of experienced Toastmasters from a club in downtown Sacramento. Over those 42 years hundreds of members have come and gone and a few remain today. Armed with the knowledge and confidence gained from their work with the club, members have become entrepreneurs, advanced in their present jobs, become leaders in the community and local government, and simply become better people.
Founding members Dave Mason and Ed Schroeder fought through the hard times as they grew but forged on as they believed that “one person can make a difference, two can change the world,” setting the tone of excellence for the life of the club.
By 1986, club membership reached 88 members, earning Sunrise the #3 position in the world of Toastmasters. They were forced to split and formed American River, Spellbinders and Birdcage clubs, among others.
On April 26, 2001 nearly 40 members and guests, including 14 past presidents, gathered to celebrate the club’s 25th anniversary. Former member and then District 39 Governor, Ruth Maloney had been quoted as saying, “What we learn at Toastmasters we take with us forever. You never know when you’ll make a difference (with your words) in another person’s life.”
At least five members have received their Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM), the highest honor to be earned. The club itself has been in the “Top 10” clubs in the world for eight years in a row.
Distinguished Toastmaster, Marty Maskall has been a member of Sunrise Center for 35 years. She credits the confidence and knowledge gained from Toastmasters to her authoring two books, starting a business and becoming the co-founder of the Fair Oaks EcoHousing project to open in 2019.
Toastmasters come from all backgrounds, including local government and community services, art, finances, law, education, health, and law enforcement. Members and guests heard stories from speakers such as a former Vietnam fighter pilot who ejected from his jet as it crashed to the ground; the vacation one member was compelled to take to the North Pole; and a story told by a member of her harrowing experience at the age if nine as she became one of the thousands of “Boat People” escaping North Vietnam in the 1970s.
Why the continued success of the Toastmasters program and Sunrise Center specifically? Members attribute success to having fast moving, well run meetings, being supportive of all members, and having fun. Many also see fellow members as family, with whom they share their lives each week. The endless cache of speech topics keeps members coming back. Each meeting gives three speakers the opportunity to talk about things such as their greatest challenges, world-wide travels, newly discovered book or magazine article, or a poignant story of the loss of a beloved family member.
Two quotes from founder Ralph Smedley explain the Toastmaster philosophy. He said, “Ours is the only organization I know dedicated to the individual, we work together to bring out the best in each of us and then we apply these skills to help others.” And, “All speech is for communication, and there is no possibility of communication unless people understand. Your club can help you find out whether you are making yourself understood.”
Sunrise Center Toastmasters meets at Perko’s Café Grill at 6215 Sunrise Boulevard at the corner of Greenback. Meetings are held every Thursday except major holidays from 6:30 a.m. to 8:00 a.m.
Answer in DNA
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - It was an eerie, familiar feeling as Sacramento District Attorney stood alongside state law enforcement agents and in front of media members, announcing the arrest of yet another notorious California serial rapist.
58-year-old Roy Charles Waller of Benicia was linked through DNA to the heinous NorCal Rapist crimes committed on at least 12 victims that date back beginning 27 years ago and took place across six counties.
“The answer has always been in the DNA,” said Schubert, coincidentally in the midst of National Forensic Science Week. She explained the partnership of tireless science and police work that led to a breakthrough over the past 10 days, eventually leading to the arrest.
“Today we can bring some closure to the victim in Contra Costa County who was attacked on Halloween in 1996,” said Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton.
Waller was arrested in Berkeley near the U.C. Berkeley campus. He has been a U.C. Berkeley employee for the past 25 years. The Sacramento Police Department and the Berkeley Police Department made the arrest.
The suspect has been charged with 12 counts of force-able sexual assault, plus enhancements. There are also allegations that he used a gun. He’s been awarded no bail and his arraignment is set for Monday in Sacramento.