Nice Work, If you Can Get It - And Mr. S Has Shown Them How!
CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - With apologies to George Gershwin, the above sums up the long career of educator Ed (“Mr. S”) Santillanes (65), who will bow out as El Camino High School drama coach in June. After directing 16 shows, his retirement will follow a farewell production of “Nice Work If You Can Get It.” The musical comedy opens March 1 and runs until March 10 at the school.
Santillanes’ swan song is also the final show to be presented in El Camino’s “cafetorium.” Though divas Jessica Chastain and Kate Levering began brilliant careers hoofing around its makeshift stage, better things lie ahead. From next year, school productions will rejoice in an $11 million arts center. The coach’s exit might seem like poor timing, but he voices no regrets. “I’ve loved working with my drama students,” he says. “Their enthusiasm is inspiring, and we’ve had a good run together. The new center will be great for them but I’m ready to retire.”
Staging “Nice Work” -- with a cast of 22 plus orchestra and 15 production staffers -- guarantees stress. “As an actor and director, I am used to what you must give up,” he says. “But students have all kinds of pressures -- homework, family obligations -- it’s hard to keep them all together. Keeping them off their cell phones at rehearsals is the hardest part. The choreographer and I are used to high anxiety.”
Santillanes began acting at Hollywood High School in his own teen years. Drama was his forte and -- while later teaching at Bella Vista High (Fair Oaks) and Winston Churchill Middle School (Carmichael) -- he moonlighted in Shakespearian productions. He joined El Camino High’s faculty 27 years ago, teaching English and running school radio and TV programs. Six years ago, he took over the drama gig and directed such plays as Agatha Christie’s “Mousetrap” and Noel Coward’s “Blythe Spirit.” His musicals have included “Kiss Me Kate,” “Fiddler on the Roof” and “The Sound of Music.”
As a final effort, “Nice Work” produces unique challenges. A recovering alcoholic and 27-years sober, Mr. S had to coach leading man Adam Severeid to act tipsy in the title number. “It’s hard to direct a teenager to seem drunk,” he admits. “They haven’t the experience -- or if they have, they don’t want to admit it. In this case, I told Adam to watch Fred Astaire’s famous drunken dance with Marjorie Reynolds in ‘Holiday Inn.’ If there’s any such thing as a graceful drunk, Astaire was it.”
Another challenge was finding circa 1930s costumes. While the school prop box contained tuxes and gowns, they were more disco than Prohibition. “Out of the blue, a lovely Carmichael lady offered her late husband’s tuxes,” says the director. “He was a bandleader and kept dozens of dinner jackets. She also donated her own evening gowns for the girls. The cast was thrilled to look so authentic and elegant.”
A free-standing tub for a bathroom scene posed another prop dilemma. “In the end,” confides Santillanes, “we painted a horse trough white. We stuck it on casters, so it can roll round. It’s not quite what we wanted but it works.” Such a prop segues neatly to the director’s next step: retirement. Santillanes owns horses and a Fair Oaks horse property. On his bucket-list is riding in a cattle drive near the Nevada border this year.
Coaxing equines after coaching teenagers seems a quantum leap. “Like teenagers, horses can be temperamental,” considers the thespian/equestrian. “But they don’t talk back. And in the stables, you don’t have to contend with cell phones.”
To purchase tickets for “Nice Work If You Can Get It,” visit El Camino High Schools Facebook page or call (916) 971-7453.
Sunday, February 12, 2017 was a day many of us will forever remember.
I was working on our property when an aide called to inform me that the integrity of the Oroville Dam Spillway was compromised that an estimated 30-foot wall of water was about to uncontrollably rush out of the spillway, and that Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea had called for a mandatory evacuation.
Knowing Sheriff Honea to be a measured person, I knew he would not call for such an order without strong evidence. He must have weighed all the factors in his thoughts and deliberation.
Immediately, I contacted him to offer my full support.
Soon thereafter, nearly 200,000 people of the North State, from Plumas Lake to Oroville, quickly loaded their treasured possessions and pets and evacuated via congested highways.
Despite heavy traffic, residents – no doubt fearing the unknown and dealing with anxiety – evacuated without chaos.
Law enforcement officials and volunteers directed citizens to where they needed to go. Hundreds of first responders assisted and transported those who were most vulnerable. Residents of neighboring regions opened their homes to displaced families.
In this time of high stress and unease, the citizens of our region held their heads high and acted admirably.
Over the next few days, Assemblyman James Gallagher (R-Yuba City) and I visited residents at the evacuation centers. We talked and shared cookies and donuts with our friends and neighbors.
Between the visits, I called the Governor’s Office and the director of the Department of Water Resources (DWR) for status updates.
After this alarming incident, thousands of workers from Kiewit Corporation and its subsidiaries descended onto Oroville to make the necessary repairs to the spillway. Their hard work is greatly appreciated.
But there’s more to be done.
A year later, sediment and debris from the spillway disaster still clog the channels of the Feather River and are strewn along the riverbanks. This disregard for the environment forced Butte County, the City of Oroville and local jurisdictions to file lawsuits against the state. Penalties can be as high as $51 billion.
At the state level, I have held many meetings in my office to discuss repair and communication efforts with state officials and community members. My staff and I continue to work with Sutter Butte Flood Control Agency to get funding to shore up the levees.
Along with Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-Richvale), the Oroville Strong Coalition, Assemblyman Gallagher and I travelled to Washington, DC to lobby federal officials. Our request to have the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) delay the license renewal is pending.
This disaster has united our community. We are now stronger than ever.
On the one-year anniversary of the evacuation, community members and leaders, businesses, and public officials affected by the order gathered on the steps of the Capitol to commemorate the event and call for efforts to prevent any similar disaster in the future.
In the coming year, we will continue to encourage the Governor to sign Assembly Bill 1270 (Gallagher), a measure to require more thorough dam inspections which I shepherded in the Senate.
I will continue my efforts to push for $100 million in state funding for flood control efforts and to clean up the Feather River system.
It is also my goal to have DWR include our community in their decision making process. We want a seat at the table when DWR decides to either send more water to Los Angeles or hold back water, among the other decisions they make.
That’s why I authored Senate Bill 955. This measure would create a citizens advisory commission for Oroville Dam and the Feather River system. This commission would allow for participation by the residents who are directly affected by the dam’s operations and strategic plans.
With the strength and support of the community, I am optimistic that we will achieve these goals for the safety of our people and the prosperity of our local economy.
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Elected to the State Senate in January 2013, Senator Nielsen represents the Fourth Senate District, which includes the counties of Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Tehama and Yuba. To contact Senator Jim Nielsen, please call him at 916-651-4004, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter.
CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - Over 250 people of all ages provide around-the-clock services to seniors living at Eskaton Village Carmichael, a nonprofit Continuing Care Retirement Community on Walnut Avenue in Carmichael. For the past 25 years, Village Carmichael has been home to hundreds of seniors at different stages of their lives.
Recently at the annual awards celebration, WinterFest, Executive Director Greg Klick recognized employees in true Academy Awards style with Oscar-like statues and speeches.
During the celebration 23 people were honored, and there were many notable moments. Imelda Hilario received Housekeeping Team Member of the Year. Her department provided cleaning services 33,000 times in 2017 to the apartments and cottages at the Village. Dining Services Team Member of the Year, Julie Telles, and Richard Dimitroglo, Independent Living Server of the Year, helped their fellow staff members serve 368,372 meals during 2017. “That’s a lot of dishes cleaned,” said Klick.
The maintenance team responded to 7,300 requests during 12 months and Jacob Wilkerson, IT Specialist, received Maintenance Team Member of the Year for the countless times he fixed residents’ computer and Internet issues. Eskaton 21-year veteran Dale Johnson, Campus Patrol Team Member of the Year, helped his team provide 25,000 guest passes during the year.
Staff also provided residents with 4,800 organized activities including performances, speakers and outings, as well as 4,200 rides to doctor appointments and shopping.
Icon award recipient Anita Cambridge who joined Eskaton in 1985 said, “We all support each other and believe in the mission.”
“We have an incredible amount of longevity and loyalty here at the Village,” said Klick. “Every single staff member plays an essential role in enriching the lives of our residents.”
Pristina Zhang, Life Enrichment Coordinator in Memory Care, received a standing applause when her name was called for the Team Member of the Year. She thanked everyone in her department, noting she could not have done it alone. “Every day I am inspired by how hard the memory care team works,” said Zhang. “We work together to make the best out of every situation, to go above and beyond for the residents.”
Other award winners included:
For a complete list of career opportunities available at Eskaton Village Carmichael, please visit careers.eskaton.org.
SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - The Board of Supervisors on February 6th, authorized the County Department of Human Assistance (DHA) to enter into an agreement with Wind Youth Services (WYS) for $380,000 for rehousing and supportive services for youth who are homeless or at risk of homelessness; and $160,000 to Sacramento Self Help Housing (SSHH) for navigation and rehousing services for unsheltered homeless populations in unincorporated areas of Sacramento County. Services will run February through October 2018 and may be extended further.
In July 2017, the Board approved funding for the implementation of four County homeless initiatives to improve the County’s response to homelessness in Sacramento County. The initiatives provide for a range of services, including shelter, transitional housing, and permanent housing services specialized for a variety of households: families, individuals, and those experiencing long-term homelessness. Currently those initiatives are all in various stages of implementation.
In September, the Board approved an additional $540,000 in funding to address service gaps in the homeless initiatives and to serve vulnerable subpopulations. DHA released a Request for Proposals seeking services for families, individuals, transitional aged youth, ages 18 to 24, and unsheltered homeless in unincorporated areas of the County. The County received five responses to the RFP.
The evaluators determined that the Wind Youth Services program integrated a spectrum of services through a strong partnership among three youth service agencies working to not only support youth experiencing homelessness stabilize in housing and employment, but to help this population avoid homelessness altogether.
Evaluators also determined Sacramento Self-Help Housing’s (SSHH) proposal addressed a gap in homeless services by expanding engagement and rehousing services for persons experiencing unsheltered homelessness in unincorporated areas of the County. This program will involve a strong partnership with SSHH, neighborhood leaders, such as the Carmichael Homeless Assistance Resource Team, law enforcement and DHA staff.
All of the selected programs will provide services that further the County’s objectives to fund services that promote permanent housing placement, residential stability, and increased skill level or income in order to prepare participants to live more independently.
For more information on the state of homelessness in Sacramento County, visit the Responding to Homelessness website at http://www.saccounty.net/Homelessness/Pages/default.aspx
Source: Sacramento County Media
Verizon's Emergency Response Center Has Connectivity Covered
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Likely, as you watched recent television or streaming images of emergency rescue operations following the devastating fires and subsequent mudslides in Southern California, for example, you gave little thought to how first-responders on the ground, in the air and elsewhere were keeping the lines of communication flowing as they scrambled into gear to save lives and prepare for recovery operations.
Behind the scenes, mobile carriers such as Verizon Wireless were doing some of the most critical work necessary in these types of situations: addressing cellular network failures, which are common in natural disasters. Depending on the situation, this can include anything from establishing mobile satellite systems to sending drones into those places humans can’t go, including collapsed buildings, tunnels and unstable structures.
Recently, officials overseeing Verizon’s Rocklin-based emergency services switch facility held a “Public Safety Day” event, offering some of its clients a tour of their Rocklin switch facility, once of several nationwide keeping an eye on their perspective, regional networking systems, as well as TV news coverage of any and all disasters or emergencies where first-responders are unable to get on the network.
Built in 2003, the facility’s sister location is based in Sunnyvale. Roughly 30 people work at the Rocklin facility; however, there are more than 100 others centers set up across the country employing more than 46 teams comprised of roughly 160,000 people.
“We like to think of ourselves as ‘pre-responders,’” said Paul Lynch, who manages Verizon’s two Northern California facilities. “We monitor situations going on all over the country and we have crews on the ground from the get-go to provide onsite support for first responders to make sure they are connected and talking to one another.”
The invite-only tours are offered monthly as a way to show emergency response teams from Cal Fire, police and sheriff’s departments, the Department of Fish Wildlife and others exactly how well-prepared and equipped the company is at providing them with on-demand connectivity during a natural or man-made disaster.
The team will mobilize portable networking call centers, mobile satellite stations and deployment of any one of the company’s veritable barnyard of “cool tools,” such as cells on wheels (COWs), cells on light trucks (COLTS), HVACs on roadside equipment (HORSEs), and generators on a trailer (GOATs).
The Rocklin switch facility tour included a walk through the engineer’s command center or NOC (Network Operations Center), where 24-hour “surveillance” of its networking operations run across wall-to-wall monitors, scrutinized around the clock by a team of six engineers, three on the day shift, three on at night.
“We don’t highlight any of this,” said Lynch. “We don’t grandstand what’s behind our network. But it is important for our customers working in the emergency fields to have confidence in who they partner with and to see up close exactly what we can do and how quickly we can do it.”
Verizon’s Crisis Response Teams, in Rocklin and nationwide, conduct regularly scheduled drills and emergency tests to ensure that they are ready to roll when they are needed, including shutting down the battery rooms and switching over to generators.
“We don’t want to be the last to know that we’ve got failure,” said Lynch.
Tim Kuka, who oversees the Rocklin facility’s Network Equipment Center (NET) located right next door to the switch facility, gave a tour of the state of the art building. The tour offered visitors a sneak-peak at Verizon’s local 4-G networking nerve center, a mind-blowingly pristine space known as the Data Hall or “cloud room.” The building was constructed in 2014 and contains an impressively intricate layout of data backup units and an equally mind-numbing amount of cable.
“If you would take all the conduit in this building alone and stretch it out, it would go all the way to San Francisco,” said Kuka.
First-responders to man-made emergencies also often require backup power and or connectivity support. Case in point: Verizon’s switch teams worked closely with FBI officials during the mass shootings that occurred at a San Bernardino-based regional center in December of 2015, quickly mobilizing command centers, establishing private networking and satellite communications lines and serving to provide backup power and other services to all agencies aiding victims and overseeing the recovery efforts.
The switch facility and NEC tours culminated with a close-up demonstration of some of those cool tools, including Rocklin’s own RAD (Robotic Assistance Device), a four-wheel robot that looks like a scooter with a camera tower perched on its front end.
“She can go into dull, dark, dirty and dangerous places,” said Jim Larson a vendor with Robotic Assistance Devices, which partners with Verizon to provide the RAD. “She can be manually operated or put on automatic to handle perimeter security during a disaster or emergency, taking pictures the whole time while emergency personnel are doing their jobs.”
Verizon’s 46 emergency networking teams across the country also are prepared and ready to help set up networking stations with water, food and other supplies, as well as connectivity support relief efforts, specifically by the Red Cross. Its response teams also will provide first responders and others with handsets, dedicated mobile hotspot devices and private networks.
“Everything we provide is free, except in cases where we have to set up satellites,” said Lynch.
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Community leaders, business owners and entrepreneurs gathered at the Carmichael Park on Friday morning, February 9th for Assemblyman Ken Cooley’s Small Business Resource Workshop.
The workshop, dedicated to reaching out to and assisting small business owners and entrepreneurs from around the community, is a free annual seminar and networking event aimed at boosting local business and the local economy. It was a good turnout from the community, as many people came not only prepared to listen and learn, but with plenty of questions as well – getting the answers and direction they need to be successful.
“It’s good to see people active in the community and able to get the help they need,” said Tiffany Detinne, owner of Detinne CPA. “In my business I see a lot of businesses fail because they don’t get help. It made me aware that there are a lot of services and places out there to go and get that help.”
Representatives from the State, County and local non-profits were on hand, answering questions and providing a variety of resources: The County of Sacramento discussed how small businesses can apply for procurement contracts with the County. The Small Business Development Center provided tips and resources on how small businesses can create an effective strategy, discover ways to generate revenue and grow their bottom line. California Capital Financial Corporation spoke about their services and on how to generate more business, find and identify business opportunities, reach more customers and build customer relationships, and business financing.
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The Effie Yeaw Nature Center has bid farewell to two of its most senior staffers. Executives Paul Tebbel and Betty Cooper recently retired after long careers in natural history education.
Cooper (63) served the center for 23 years. When it lost county funding and settled under the wing of the American River Natural History Association in 2010, Cooper assumed a critical financial development role. “ARNHA took a giant leap of faith in taking us on,” she considered. “Continuing our operations required tripling their fundraising. We all realized how much people loved this place. For more than 40 years, it’s provided education and tranquil space where you really can connect with wildlife.”
Cooper’s greatest success was in partnership with the Sacramento Fine Arts Center. The two non-profits came up with an “Art Where Wild Things Are” gala. In nine years of sipping wine and auctioning art, the event has become the most glamorous night of the Carmichael calendar. “Compared to our more family-oriented programs, this gala is elegant,” explains its organizer. “We sell out almost every year. It’s great to see well-known artists, philanthropists and elected officials in our beautiful preserve. Fine food, fine art and fine people blend delightfully.”
Paul Tebbel (63) joined the Effie Yeaw staff in 2011. The new executive director’s biggest challenge was managing the transition of a County facility to a nonprofit. “We started from scratch in creating staffing and accounting systems,” he explains. “Most importantly, we had to rebuild public confidence. Many supporters thought we would close. Our job was to convince them we were still in business. Thankfully, our members came back and provided the support that keeps us thriving. We would not have survived without hardworking ARNHA volunteers and our staff. Betty Cooper has been a fantastic co-leader. There’s nothing she can’t do.”
The retirees’ roles will be taken over Torey Byington, who previously directed a nature facility in Wayland, Michigan. Both Cooper and Tebbel plan to volunteer for future Nature Center projects. “Effie Yeaw and its programs are a great mission,” said Cooper. “The staff and volunteers are like family. That’s not something you can walk away from.”
Learn about the Nature center’s educational programs at www.sacnaturecenter.net
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Help the volunteer heroes of nature at the non-profit Wildlife Care Association of Sacramento and give small animals and birds brought to them injured, orphaned and displaced across our region that second chance by participating in the annual Nuts & Berries Fundraiser.
The event will be a raffle for more than $10,000 in prizes. The Nuts & Berries event will be held on Sunday, February 25, 2018 from 12pm-3pm at McClellan Conference Center located at 5411 Luce Blvd, McClellan, CA 95652. The festivities will begin at 12 pm when Wild Things Inc. will hold several presentations with exotic animals such as a Capuchin Monkey, an African Crested Porcupine, and a Crocodile. This will be a casual event which will include door prizes and refreshments.
The event is open to the public, $5.00 at the door, admission is included with raffle ticket purchase. In addition, we will live stream the raffle draw, so you can watch to see if you won, even if you can’t make the event. The raffle draw will begin at 2 pm and will be live streamed on Facebook @wildlifecareassociation.
These regional volunteers in wildlife rehabilitation need your support to help thousands of small birds and animals recover to return to the environment. The Wildlife Care Association depends on your donation of time and money to save them.
Visit www.wildlifecareassociation.com to learn more about Nuts & Berries tickets. $75.00 each or two for $140.00.
If you’ve found injured wildlife call 916-965-WILD. Wildlife Care Association of Sacramento serves the public 10am-6pm seven days a week year-round at 5211 Patrol Rd. McClellan Park.
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Exactly one year ago today, hundreds of thousands of North Sacramento Valley residents were forced to evacuate their homes as the result of the spillway failures at the Oroville Dam. Today, on the one year anniversary of this mass evacuation, the legislature passed Assemblyman Gallagher’s (R-Yuba City) dam safety legislation, AB 1270.
On February 7th, after releasing water from series of heavy storms, the spillway at Oroville dam collapsed. Authorities were forced to use the untested emergency spillway, which also eroded, forcing the evacuation of almost 200,000 people. Had the emergency spillway broken, a three-story wall of water would have come down the Feather River, causing unimaginable destruction to communities downstream.
“The Oroville disaster jeopardized lives, property, and California’s water supply and conveyance system. The silver lining is that the crisis highlighted that we must do more to ensure we are taking care of vital infrastructure, like the levees and dams that protect our communities. AB 1270 will help us do this by ensuring that California leads national and global efforts to update and modernize dam safety requirements,” said Gallagher.
AB 1270 will require the Department of Water resources to work with independent dam safety and risk management organizations to update dam safety protocols. These protocols must include things identified the by the forensic team as contributing to the spillway failure, like the review of the original design and construction of dams and auxiliary structures like spillways.
“Most of our dams are over fifty years old, and many are considered high-risk. We must do the necessary work to identify deficiencies and correct them,” added Senator Nielsen, a co-author of the bill.
AB 1270 now heads to the Governor’s desk where, if signed, it would take effect immediately.
For more information on Assemblyman Gallagher, and to track legislation visit www.assembly.ca.gov/Gallagher
CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - The Carmichael Recreation and Park District will host a President’s Week Kids Camp from February 19-23, 7am-6pm at La Sierra Community Center located at 5325 Engle Rd, Suite 100. Come enjoy arts, crafts, games, dancing and a lot of fun for the kids. There are two gymnasiums, large outdoor facilities and a new playground. Children ages 5-12 are welcome and there are full and part-time options available. Full time program fees for residents rates go for $110, non-residents are $115. Part time program fees for residents go for $70, non-residents $75. For more information call 916-483-7826, e-mail email@example.com or visit carmichaelpark.com – register today!
The Kid’s Hang Out After School Program is operated by qualified staff and held at the La Sierra Community Center, Monday through Friday throughout the school year. Children are in a safe environment where they can do homework, have a nutritional snack, be active, explore their creativeness, and socialize with others.
The program is offered to Deterding, Carmichael, Del Paso Manor, Thomas Kelly, Cowan, Barrett, Arcade, and Churchill. The program is looking to expand to Cameron Ranch so please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get on our request for pick-up list. If we have enough participants from that site, we’ll be able to move forward with picking up from that school. For all other school inquiries please contact us at Telly@carmichaelpark.com