Love and Satire on Center Stage

Submitted by Fair Oaks Theatre Company  |  2017-06-15

Members of the Reefer Madness cast: (Front row, left to right): Melissa Brausch, Elio Gutierrez, Jonathan Blum. (Back row, left to right): Brianne Hidden-Wise, William Schmidt, Leah Fraizer, Michael Bowles. -- Photo by Brian Williams

Love of many kinds is running rampant at The Fair Oaks Theatre Festival this summer! Love for their beloved former Artistic Director Bob Irvin… love of satire and music… and love of the dreaded ‘reefer,’ a humble pig, and Shakespeare’s iconic Kate from “Taming of the Shrew.” All this love comes in the form of a summer theatre season that was inspired and driven by Irvin. The season’s show reflect his vision: “Reefer Madness,” “Charlotte’s Web,” and “SHREW!,” an original musical mapped out by Irvin before his untimely passing. Irvin’s 30-year legacy is in good hands with Beth Duggan (the new Artistic Director), and Karen Bombardier, the director of the season’s opening production of “Reefer Madness” (June 19 – July 23, 2017).

“Reefer Madness,” is an outrageous tongue-in-cheek musical comedy and a satirical sendup of the 1936 low-budget film on the menace of marijuana. It is laced with heady ballads, spectacular choreography (by Jacob Montoya) and hilarious musical commentary on the nature of government propaganda.

The musical tells the tale of the Harper Affair, in which young Jimmy Harper finds his life of promise turned into a life of debauchery and murder thanks to the new drug menace marijuana. Along the way he receives help from his girlfriend Mary Lane and even Jesus himself, but always finds himself in the arms of the Reefer Man and the rest of the denizens of the Reefer Den. Winner of seven awards, including Best Production: L.A. Drama Critics Circle Award, and Best Production: Backstage West Garland Award.

A sort of twilight-zone-meets-horror-film-meets-musical-comedy, this shows provides both thrills and chills that just may inspire a cult following! “Reefer” runs at 8:30pm Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through July 29. Tickets range from $12 (on Retro Sundays) to $18 general. “Reefer Madness,” an R-rated show.

Opening July 1 is “Charlotte’s Web,” a fun and faithful adaptation of E.B. White’s classic story of a gentle pig and his unlikely friend, a spider. The one-hour show features all of the novel’s favorite characters, including Fern, Homer Zuckerman and Templeton the Rat, and is followed by an opportunity for photos and autographs in the adjacent park. Tickets to all shows (Saturdays, July 1-22, 11am) are $5.

The final show of the season is “SHREW!,” an original musical set in 1930s Paris. This swinging little musical takes Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew” as a launching off point, but brings the audience a feisty couple that’s evenly matched in strength and wit. Written by published author Jennifer Longo (“Six Feet Over It,” “Up to this Point”), “SHREW!” is filled with high fashion fun and music reminiscent of Cole Porter and Noel Coward. Musical Directors Lucy D’Mot, Kirt Shearer and Jonathan Blum set the perfect tone in this ‘jazz age’ musical comedy! Shows will run Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 8pm from August 11 through September 17. Tickets range from $12 (on Retro Sundays) to $18 general.

In addition to theatre, the Fair Oaks Theatre Festival offers a full season of music this summer as well! Concerts include the popular folk music group “The New Christy Minstrels” (July 29 and 30), a New Orleans Jazz Night (James Pace & the Switch Blade Trio with Jessic Malone, August 5), and a Bluesy/Rock Night (Jeff Watson Band, September 30).

For more information on all productions and concerts, call (916) 966-3683 or visit

Sac Choral Society

Railroad Museum is Now a Smithsonian Affiliate

Source: T-Rock Communications  |  2017-06-21

Union Pacific 4466 is an 0-6-0 type steam locomotive built in October 1920 for the Union Pacific Railroad (UP) to perform switching chores and transfer runs. The locomotive currently resides at the California Railroad Museum. 
-- Photo courtesy Neil916

California State Parks and the California State Railroad Museum & Foundation are proud to announce the California State Railroad Museum is now officially recognized as a Smithsonian Affiliate.

“We are delighted to officially begin our Affiliate partnership with the California State Railroad Museum, an organization which has previously worked alongside the Smithsonian in scholarship and historic preservation,” said Myriam Springuel, Interim Director, Smithsonian Affiliations. “The story of railroading is very much the story of building the foundation of the United States and we are proud to partner with this museum which tells this national story from its beginnings in California. The collections, scholarship and expertise of the Smithsonian will be well matched by those at the California State Railroad Museum; we expect both organizations to benefit a great deal from this collaborative relationship.”

Located in Old Sacramento State Historic Park, the Railroad Museum joins a network of 216 organizations throughout the nation that are committed to serving the public through educational outreach, artifact loans, traveling exhibitions and collaborative research with the Smithsonian. Smithsonian Affiliations help to build a bridge between the local experiences available in individual communities with the national heritage preserved and displayed at the Smithsonian.

“We are proud that the Railroad Museum is now an official Smithsonian Affiliate,” said Ty Smith, Museum Director for the California State Railroad Museum. “Aligning the Railroad Museum with the Smithsonian Institution will help us further our mission of connecting people to California's railroad heritage. This partnership is both intellectual and material and will advance our ability to create a world-class experience to each and every guest who visits the California State Railroad Museums and Old Sacramento State Historic Park.”

Widely recognized as North America’s most prestigious rail museum, the California State Railroad Museum showcases more than 150 years of railroad history in 225,000 square feet of space. Each year, approximately 600,000 guests from all over the world visit the Railroad Museum, to see and experience the immaculately restored full-scale locomotives and railroad cars, impressive toy train collection, interactive and ever-changing exhibits, and much more.

“We look forward to networking and working collaboratively with other Smithsonian Affiliates to further our collective goals to educate, interpret and engage the public with the unique and memorable experiences we have to offer,” said Cheryl Marcell, President & CEO of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.”

For more information about the California State Railroad Museum & Foundation, please call 916-323-9280 or visit

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The Center for Jobs and the Economy recently released its full analysis of the May employment data.

In the State Employment Growth Rankings, California dropped to 3rd place behind Florida and Texas Between May 2016 and May 2017, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data shows the total number of employed in California increased by 250,000 (seasonally adjusted), or 13.4% of the total net employment gains in this period for the United States. California dropped to 3rd place behind Florida (which has a civilian working age population only 55% as large as California’s) at 409,600 and Texas (68% as large) at 254,800.

Measured by percentage change in employment over the year, California dropped to 33rd highest. Adjusted for population, California dropped to 35th.

The report shows California’s Labor Force Participation Rate at its lowest level since 1976. California’s participation rate (seasonally adjusted) in May declined to 62.0%, while the US rate dropped only 0.2 point to 62.7%. Improvement in the unemployment rate at both the California and national levels came from these contractions in the labor force numbers.

The seasonally adjusted California participation rate in May was at its lowest level since 1976. The unadjusted rate was at its second lowest level since 1976. In the recent May Budget Revision, the Governor again pointed to the increasing share of lower wage jobs as one of the prime causes of slowing state revenues growth.

“The level of wages has been revised downward, and cash receipts have been significantly below forecast.” - Gov. Jerry Brown.

Brown continues to not take responsibility for the many lost high paying jobs leaving California for better business climates in other states. California ranks last in the United States for being pro-business. Over one-third of jobs growth over the past 12 months has been in the low wage industries.

For additional information and data about the California economy visit


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Capitol Pops Patriotic Concert July 2nd

Story and Photo by Susan Maxwell Skinner  |  2017-06-21

Kurt Pearsall will lead the Capitol Pops Concert Band at Fair Oaks Village Park, July 2.

A free July 2 (Sunday) concert at Fair Oaks Village Park will set a patriotic mood for the nation’s birthday. Lead by maestro Kurt Pearsall, the Capitol Pops Concert Band’s volunteer members will offer an all-American program that will include marches, anthems and swing tunes.

Susan Skinner is featured vocalist. A God Bless America finale will include the audience in a sing-along with the 60-piece ensemble. Children are welcome. The park is located at 4238 Main Street in Fair Oaks. Downbeat is 6:30 pm.

Sheltons Unlimited Mechanical Services of North Highlands is concert sponsor. Learn about the Capitol Pops Concert Band at

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Divine Love: the Answer to Universal Health

Submitted by Christopher Cheney  |  2017-06-21

José de Dios Mata, is originally from Spain, but has been living in the United States for a number of years.

International Speaker to Address Effective Health Care Through Prayer

Jose de Dios Mata, of Elsa Illinois, will give a free lecture to the public in Carmichael on Thursday, June 29 at 7:30 p.m. The talk is titled “Divine Love: The Answer to Universal Health” and is sponsored by First Church of Christ, Scientist, Carmichael, as a gift to the community and will be given in the church edifice at 4949 Kenneth Ave., Carmichael, During the talk free parking and child care are included.

This lecture is about the power of God as divine Love and the direct influence for good it can have on lives individually and collectively when spiritually understood. It explores the Biblical basis of God as divine Love whose law Christ Jesus taught and practiced in his healing and teaching ministry. It brings out the relevance of his command “to love your neighbor as yourself” and the worldwide healing impact this can have.

The ideas in this lecture make clear the importance of loving from the standpoint of God, Love, as our source and each of us as God’s tenderly cared for children. Praying from this standpoint heals disease, saves us from wrong thinking and acting, and awakens us to the reality that our lives are safe in the law of Love. How powerful divine Love is to answer every problem we might be facing. This lecture includes experiences of healing that resulted from prayer and a deeper understanding of God as divine Love based on the teachings of Christian Science.

The speaker, José de Dios Mata, is originally from Spain, but has been living in the United States for a number of years. As a teenager, he felt a special interest in music and decided to study guitar, with an emphasis on flamenco. This led him to form his own group and perform in various venues.

Later, he worked for the government for a decade, the last five years of which were spent as a special agent in the Intelligence Services. In his personal life, he faced an enormous challenge in early 1979. A relative’s sudden illness, for which the doctors could find no cure, as well as his own almost complete loss of hearing due to a congenital lesion, which he was told would require immediate surgery or result in total deafness - and he could not continue in his position at work until he had surgery - forced him to seek a solution to these difficulties. He chose not to have surgery. After trying a series of different alternatives, in December of that year José de Dios was introduced to Christian Science by a doctor, his guitar student, who knew of his reluctance towards conventional medicine and encouraged him to explore this system of spiritual healing. Both situations were quickly and completely healed solely through reading the textbook of this religion, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy.

He soon realized that the spiritual understanding he had just achieved enabled him to heal others. After several years of proving the practical effect of these teachings in the healing of illness and other inharmonious situations of day-to-day life, he gave up his career in 1986 and decided to move to the United States to enter the public practice of Christian Science as his only profession. His desire to teach others how to practice spiritual healing led him to take Christian Science Normal Class in 2009,in Boston, in order to become an authorized Christian Science teacher in Spain.

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Feral Cats Project Seeks Volunteers and Community Support to Curb the Feral Cat Population

By Linda Morgan, Director Sacramento Feral Resources  |  2017-06-21

Spaying/Neutering of stray, feral, and abandoned cats will prevent hundreds of litters of kittens, literally thousands of cats yearly.

Unwanted feral/stray cats are everywhere and the proverbial “kitten-season” is in full-swing. In an effort to help these newborn kittens, people often put them in a box and rush them to the local shelter. Too often the outcome for these kittens isn’t what the well-intentioned person expected. So how can you change this outcome? Spay/Neuter of stray, feral, and abandoned cats will prevent hundreds of litters of kittens, literally thousands of cats yearly, from being born in areas where they are not wanted and struggle to survive on their own.

Sacramento Feral Resources (SacFerals) recently introduced the Feral Cats Project.

The focus of the Project is to recruit volunteers and involve residents county-wide to help humanely curb the feral cat population in Sacramento County through a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program. We are looking for the best ways to reach residents in communities throughout the County.

Feral cats are a neighborhood issue that can have good resolution when working together to TNR. In fact, Sacramento County supports TNR - not euthanasia, starvation, or relocation (which is illegal) of feral cats. The good news is that there are low-cost and free spay/neuter clinics available.

Residents who want to help improve the feral cat situation can learn more about the Project, feral cats, TNR, feral colony assistance, and other volunteer opportunities at monthly Free Feral Cats Workshops. Workshops open to the general public. Meetings are held at 5605 Marconi Ave in Carmichael. The Workshop Schedule, class descriptions, and sign-up information is available online:

Why establish a Feral Cats Project? In 2013 SacFerals introduced a public website to offer resources and assistance to anyone with feral cat issues. Over time, traffic to the website as well as requests for help have substantially increased. During the past two years, SacFerals has received reports of more than 9,000 feral/stray cats. The need for assistance has out-paced the current volunteer staff.

With an estimated 98,000 – 220,000 feral cats in Sacramento County, as the saying goes, “It takes a village” to make a huge dent in reducing the number of litters born in the County every year and to ultimately control and reduce the community feral cat population in Sacramento County.

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Masters Lead in Ceremony Celebrating Achievements

By Elise Spleiss  |  2017-06-14

Students about to receive their new colored belts with the staff for Family Tai Know Do Plus and grand masters who will present the belts. 
-- Photo courtesy Family Tae Kwon Do

Madera Park in Citrus Heights was the setting for a special day on June 10, celebrating both the new, larger Family Tae Kwon Do Plus facility in Citrus Heights, and to honor its family of teachers, staff and students as they celebrated another year of student achievement with their annual Belt Ceremony.

Just one week following the grand opening celebration of the move to a new 5,400 square foot at the corner of Sunrise Boulevard and Antelope Road, friends and family along with five much honored and respected Grand Masters came to the park to recognize students of all ages who have worked so hard to achieve their next level of belt.

The night before the ceremony, the testing panel of the grand masters met and tested 100 color belt students and six high ranking black belts. On the panel were Grand Masters of various martial arts systems: Joe Souza Grand Master- Kensujitsu; Grand Master Vinton Koklich - Parker’s Kenpo; Grand Master Harry Green - Bladed Weapons Specialist; Professor Andre Sims - Taechi & Kenpo Karate, and K.C. McFarland, Grand Master of Kajukenbo. These masters of their craft represent thousands of hours of learning and teaching, generously sharing their expertise and knowledge with others.

Dozens of pupils, beginning with the Kinder Kick class, ages 3-6 years, came forward, one by one to receive their new belt from Professor Dominic Cirincione, Kateena Cirincione, teacher Miss Kasea, 20, and several of the Grand Masters assembled on that day to celebrate ‘Ohana’ or ‘family’ in Hawaiian, and to share and celebrate knowledge.

Parents and staff then helped with the “changing of the belts” as each student switched out their old belt for their new one. Several martial arts demonstrations were given by Zachary Gohn, a new first degree black belt, and Kasea Cirincione, both demonstrating with swords. Cirincione, a new fifth degree black belt also demonstrated a board breaking kick with her fiancé, Brenden Nielsen, a third-degree black belt.

It is an honor to be allowed to test, and to show her gratitude, Kasea who has been doing martial arts since the age of four, presented each Grand Master with a special handmade Barong, a traditional Filipino martial arts weapon.

Following the demonstrations students lined up to have their belts signed by the Grand Masters, followed by a BBQ and more sharing and camaraderie.

Mutual respect is evident in everything the Family staff does. There is a reason or that. In a conversation on the merits of teaching and learning discipline and respect in today’s children, Professors Sousa and Koklich, who share over 120 years of martial arts experience between them, noted that there is “no respect or discipline today and these are needed to pursue things in life”. “You have to earn it, life isn’t where everyone gets a trophy…there are winners and losers, that’s part of life”. They added that having discipline and respect affects the student’s whole life, “makes them better citizens and students.”

Family Tae Kwon Do Plus is located at 7831 Sunrise Blvd. at the corner of Sunrise Blvd. and Antelope Road. 916 (725-3200). It offers a wide choice of classes and other resources for children and adults.

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Women's Veterans Event Honors Many Who Served

Story and Photos by Paul Scholl  |  2017-06-14

The women veterans who attended the event were an impressive group who served our nation and now need our support in return.

Dedication to our nation was on display at a recent event held to support women veterans of the United States Armed Services. A very impressive group of women who have served our country came together at the gathering and celebration, hosted by American River Brewing Company.

The Women Veterans Alliance, created to support female veterans who have specific needs separate from male veterans, has as their mission is to impact and empower the lives of women veterans. They are the only group focused on directly impacting the quality of life of women veterans.

Attending the event on Friday, June 2nd to recognize the honorees were Congressman Ami Bera and Assemblyman Ken Cooley. Dave Mathis, co-owner of American River Brewing Company has become a big supporter of the group.

During the presentations, each of the veterans took to the microphone and announced their branch of the military and their term of service. It was truly impressive to hear each of their individual commitments, with some still engaged.

American River Bank was the major sponsor for this event. Be sure to tell them “Thank You” when you visit one of their local branches. Food was provided by Culinerdy Cruzer.

To get more information about the Women Veterans Alliance go to

“We believe strongly in supporting our veterans, and especially our women veterans. They all gave so much for us. It is time for us to stand up and do more for them” said Dave Mathis, co-owner of American River Brewing Company.

American River Brewing is located at 11151 Trade Center Drive, just off Sunrise Blvd. in Rancho Cordova.

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Democrats Deny Funding for Critical Levee Repairs Needed after Oroville Dam Spillway Failure

Source: The Office of Senator Nielsen  |  2017-06-14

Despite the support of a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers, businesses and local agencies, legislative Democrats in Sacramento rejected funding to repair the state's water infrastructure that was severely damaged as a result of the failure of the Oroville Dam spillway.

Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Tehama) and Assemblyman James Gallagher (R-Yuba City) led an alliance to obtain money in the state budget to repair California's critical levees in Northern California, which are used by the State Water Project to deliver water to the Central Valley and Southern California.

“The failure to prioritize our state's infrastructure is incomprehensible,” said Senator Jim Nielsen. “Millions of Californians depend on water that passes through these critical water conveyance systems.”

Senator Nielsen added, “Our request would have provided for an investment in the state’s water infrastructure, which would protect lives, preserve property and save the state billions of dollars in emergency repairs.”

On February 7, the Oroville Dam spillway failed causing nearly 200,000 people and their pets to be evacuated. In addition, water system levees suffered significant damage that may prevent them from functioning properly in the next high-water event unless emergency repairs are completed this year.

The $100 million funding request was also supported by Senators Bill Dodd (D-Napa), Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton), Dr. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) and the following organizations: Central Valley Flood Control Association; Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency; Northern California Water Association; Metropolitan Water District of Southern California; Western Growers; California Farm Bureau Federation; Yuba Flood Control District; Yuba City; Operating Engineers Local 3.

Senator Jim Nielsen represents the Fourth Senate District, which includes all or portions of Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Tehama and Yuba Counties. To contact Senator Nielsen, call him at (916) 651-4004, or via email at

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Join Team Hope Walk

Source: Rick Reed PR  |  2017-06-13

Genetic Disaster or Uncertainty in Your Genes - Huntington’s Disease?

Individually, they battled ALS, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s. They all lost. ALS beat baseball great Lou Gehrig; Parkinson’s knocked down Muhammad Ali; Alzheimer’s erased rock music legend AC/DC founder Malcolm Young; and Huntington’s disease silenced Singer/Songwriter Woody Guthrie.

Called ‘the cruelest disease’ Huntington’s is like having ALS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s at the same time. Imagine! And many are unaware the HD is in their family history.

Neurological degeneration becomes the life of people impacted by the genetic disaster called Huntington’s disease or HD. Caused by a genetic mismatch many won’t know they carry within their makeup.

Local families are uniting to provide help for today and hope for tomorrow at the Team Hope Walk, William Land Park Saturday, June 24, 2017. The ninth annual walk in this beautiful setting helps raise awareness of HD, support for local families and funds for ongoing research to find treatment and a cure.

Often unknown before symptoms, Therese Crucher-Marin of Auburn and Dawn Doster of Fair Oaks have lived with Huntingon’s disease dedicating their lives to helping others understand the fate, learn about testing and help support local families thru the HDSA Sacramento Chapter. They are just two regional families talking about how Huntington’s changed their lives.

To learn more about HD, visit the chapter Website at

Registration costs are: Adults $25, Children $10. You receive a T- shirt when you register online. You can get information, register or donate at Sacramento, CA Team Hope Walk at

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