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Volunteer Has a Heart Bigger than His Clown Shoes

Shriners Hospital Volunteer Recognized for Exceptional Service

Posted: 5/22/2015

Harry Norman is Hare Bear the Clown
Harry Norman is affectionately known throughout Northern California Shriners Hospital as Hare Bear the Clown. Every Thursday rain or shine, Hare Bear can be found greeting families as they arrive for their clinic appointments.
Photo courtesy of Shriners Hospitals for Children, Northern California

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Shriners Hospital volunteer Harry Norman was recently awarded the Doug Busath Lifetime Achievement Award at the Northern California hospital’s volunteer recognition ceremony. The award is named in honor of Doug Busath, who volunteered in the hospital’s Central Activity Area for 10 years after his grandson was treated at Shriners for severe burn injuries sustained in an automobile accident. The award is presented annually to a hospital volunteer to honor dedication, commitment, and joyful service to patients, families, and the entire hospital community.

Mr. Norman, winner of the 2015 lifetime achievement award, is affectionately known throughout the hospital as Hare Bear the Clown. Every Thursday rain or shine, Hare Bear can be found greeting families as they arrive for their clinic appointments. On his volunteer days, he gets up at 4:30 a.m. to put on his clown face so he can arrive at the hospital by 7:45 a.m. He has volunteered at the Northern California Shriners Hospital since it opened in April 1997, contributing more than 5,300 hours to the hospital clinic and thousands of hours in the community supporting both Shriners and Shriners Hospitals for Children.

“When I retired, I knew I wanted an active role in the Shrine, and the best way of doing that was to be part of the clown brigade,” said Mr. Norman, who has been a Shriner for over 20 years. “I love to see the looks on children’s faces when they see Hare Bear the Clown. If I can be a happy distraction for them, all the better,” he said.

When Mr. Norman decided to become a Shriner clown, he said it was easy to come up with a clown name. As a term of endearment, his wife Edna nicknamed him Hare Bear years ago. Now, it is a name that endears him to many of the children who come to Shriners Hospitals for Children, Northern California. To those who know Mr. Norman, aka Hare Bear, his heart is even bigger than his clown shoes.

Source: Shriners Hospitals for Children, Northern California

Annual Taste of Fair Oaks Returns

Posted: 5/22/2015

FAIR OAKS, CA (MPG) - Come out for an evening of fun, food, and drink at the North Ridge Country Club (located at 7600 Madison Ave.) on Friday, June 5th from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Over 60 area restaurants, wineries, and regional microbreweries will be in attendance for guests to taste and sample the exhibitors’ food and beverages. Enjoy the evening with your family and friends by sampling everything the event has to offer. A partial list of attending wineries, breweries, and restaurants are: Carvalho Family Winery, Cooper Vineyards, Heringer Estates, Lava Cap Winery, Oak Ridge Winery, Fire Rock Grill, The Melting Pot, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Lost Coast Brewery, and Mendocino Brewing Company.

There will be silent and live auctions, food and drinks, a putting contest with a $5,000 grand prize, live music, a gift raffle, classic cars, and more. The cost for all of this is just $40 for an advance purchase ticket and $50 at the door. To buy tickets, call (916) 967-2903 or visit Attendees of a Taste of Fair Oaks must be 21 years of age or older.

A portion of the proceeds from a Taste of Fair Oaks will benefit the Mercey Springs Foundation. Chamber members can help a Taste of Fair Oaks by donating items for the live and silent auctions. This is a great opportunity to promote your business. This event is the chamber’s biggest fundraiser of the year and the Chamber needs all of its members to help to make Taste of Fair Oaks a success.

Source: Fair Oaks Chamber of Commerce

Car Wash Duck Mascot and Young Volunteers
Quick Quack Car Wash franchise spokes-duck (at rear, with glasses) congratulates volunteers during Creek Week celebrations at Carmichael Park. A cleanup army earlier labored to remove tons of garbage from Sacramento County waterways.

Clean Sweep for Creeks

Water Wisdom Shared at Carmichael Park by 1,800 Volunteers

Story and photos by Susan Maxwell Skinner
Posted: 5/1/2015

CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - A party celebrating Creek Week recently caused a big splash—and vital lessons in water conservation—at Carmichael Park.

Displays and giveaways from many sponsoring agencies sent an unfiltered message: during California’s worst drought, everyone must do their bit to save and protect water.

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Jacqui Daley and Suzanne Winters Display the Quilt
Air Force veteran Jacqui Daley (left), proud winner of the patriotic quilt, and quilt creator, Suzanne Winters (right) display the much-coveted door prize following the American Legion Bar-B-Q dinner.
Photo by Elise Spleiss

BBQ Dinner and Dance Raises Funds for Local Veterans

By Sheila LaPolla and Elise Spleiss
Posted: 5/8/2015

FAIR OAKS, CA (MPG) - The American Legion (AL), Fair Oaks, Post 383, hosted a Bar-B-Q Blues dinner and dance fundraiser at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) hall in Fair Oaks, 8990 Kruitof Way, on April 11th.

Many American Legion and VFW veterans and their families as well as the general public enjoyed the festivities and delicious BBQ steak or chicken meal with all the fixings.

The crowd kicked up their heels with rhythm and blues, jazz, and classic rock music by the band Crystal Image. John Covert and his band provided an eclectic mix of listening and dancing music for the enjoyment of those from their 20s to Baby Boomers and beyond.

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Volunteers Circulate Costumed as Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee and Other Wonderland Characters
The atmosphere at the Sacramento Waldorf School in Fair Oaks was festive and upbeat, though the purpose for being there was somber. Pictured are numerous participants at the Relay for Life event on April 18th.
Photos courtesy of Patricia Poremba

Cancer Survivors Come Together at Relay for Life

By Julia Baum
Posted: 4/24/2015

FAIR OAKS, CA (MPG) - Children scrambled around a sunny athletic field while a band played rock ‘n’ roll music in the distance. Nearby, adults and teens power-walked the surrounding track, its edges dotted with camping tents and a lemonade stand, and volunteers arranged folding chairs for a late-night movie screening.

The atmosphere at the Sacramento Waldorf School in Fair Oaks was festive and upbeat, though the purpose for being there was somber: numerous participants at the Relay for Life event on April 18th had their lives affected by cancer at some point. The 24-hour American Cancer Society campout drew 15 teams of volunteers over the weekend, most of them survivors or loved ones out in full force, fighting back.

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Faith Bedingfield, Lorly Ruben, and Allison Bemis Are the Queens
Faith Bedingfield is Jr. Miss Orangevale (left), Lorly Ruben is Little Miss Orangevale (middle), and Allison Bemis is Miss Orangevale Queen (right).
Photo courtesy of the Orangevale Chamber of Commerce

2015 Miss Orangevale Queens Have Been Crowned

Posted: 4/24/2015

ORANGEVALE, CA (MPG) - The sixth Annual Miss Orangevale Pageant, directed by Tamara Barbu-Brown, was held on April 10th at the Life Center in Orangevale. The pageant was hosted by Melissa Cabral from Good Day Sacramento and sponsored by the Orangevale Chamber of Commerce. A total of 19 contestants entered to become the new Miss Orangevale.

The winners are Mazlynn Grace for Wee Miss Orangevale, Lorly Ruben for Little Miss Orangevale, Faith Bedingfield for Jr. Miss Orangevale, and Allison Bemis for Miss Orangevale Queen. To meet these lovely ladies and their sponsors, you are invited to a coronation on April 24th at Eskaton FountainWood Lodge located at 8773 Oak Avenue in Orangevale at 5:30 p.m. This event will include fun door prize gifts and pictures with the winners!

The winners and all contestants will also appear in the upcoming Orangevale Pow Wow Days Parade on May 16th at 9:00 a.m. on Greenback Lane between Main Avenue and Filbert Avenue. If you are interested in joining this wonderful program next year as a sponsor, contestant, or volunteer, please like the Miss Orangevale page on Facebook ( for future updates.

Special thanks to the following sponsors who made this event a success: Orangevale View, Eskaton FountainWood Lodge, Chris Moriarty Photography, Paul Mitchell of Sacramento, Flower Shop in Orangevale, Orangevale Copy Center, Subway Truck Parts, Lisa Sampson with Lyon Real Estate, The “GoToGuy” for Insurance, Amanda McCoin for Take Shape for Life Coach, The Pentkowski Family, Best Appliance Repair, and Mercy Hospital operating room in Folsom.

Source: Orangevale Chamber of Commerce

Learning with Furry Friends

“Read to a Dog” Helps Children Discover the Joy of Reading

Story and photos by Christie Spurlock
Posted: 4/10/2015

Gem and Mineral Show Rocks the Region

Story and Photos by Anne Stokes
Posted: 4/10/2015

Citizenship Ceremony Held for Young Americans

By Sharon Rummery
Posted: 3/27/2015

Fire Camp Lets Kids Be Firefighters for a Week

Posted: 3/27/2015


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