Friday, May 31, 2013

New Restaurant in Eureka Square

It's a Vietnamese restaurant called "Dinosaurs". It'll be interesting to compare their sandwiches and
spring rolls with Vy's Coffee.

Yelp review for Dinosaurs

Yelp review for Vy's Coffee 

Since we're at it, it's probably time for the city to update its Eureka Square web page. Some of the businesses left or closed down years ago. 

Retail Businesses

  • Abundance
  • Bay Wide Medical Supplies
  • City Arms
  • Coast Karate Studio
  • Discount Cigarettes
  • Elizabeth Styling Salon
  • Eureka Square Cleaners
  • First National Bank  (Enclosed ATM) 
  • Go Sushi
  • Good Health Natural Foods (within Oceana Market)
  • JJ Performance Training
  • JKF Gojukai Karatedo Pacifica
  • Kim's Natural Nails Pro Nail
  • Longboard Margarita Bar 
  • Masala Restaurant 
  • Ocean Yoga
  • Oceana Market
  • On the Coast Book Keeping & Tax Service
  • Pacifica Hydroponic Connection 
  • Paul Hessinger, NLP & Hypnotherapy
  • Shintaikido of Pacifica
  • Slender Lady
  • Sparks of Creation Studio
  • Stephanie P Elliott, MFT
  • Tamales Unicos De Cuernavaca
  • U.S. Bank
  • Weightech
  • Wells Fargo (ATM within Oceana Market) 

Posted by Steve Sinai

Pacifica Homelessness Soars

PRC's Homeless in Pacifica? Study Addresses 900% Increase in Homelessness in Pacifica.

 On Thursday, May 30, the Pacifica Resource Center (PRC) released a report, ”Homeless in Pacifica? Understanding the Escalating Situation & Creating a Community Response,” written by PRC Executive Director, Anita Rees, and Professor Sheila Katz of Sonoma State University’s Sociology Department. A downloadable copy of the report can be found here.

This policy report brings attention to the escalating number of homeless people in the city of Pacifica. “Despite the beautiful beaches, quaint town feel, open spaces, ocean views, and beachfront property, homelessness in the city of Pacifica has increased 900% in the last 6 years,” explains Rees. “Life is not a beach for unhoused Pacificans.”


Submitted by Lionel Emde

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Pacifica Spindrift Players presents "Love Letters"

Whether you’re a Spindrift Theater regular or if you’ve never been there before, please come to see A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters which opens on Friday, May 31st The play has just two characters, who recount notes and letters between them from 2nd grade until their late fifties.  “It’ll make you laugh, it’ll make you cry”, etc., etc.
Love Letters will be performed by a rotating set of 3 different pairs of cast members on Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 p.m. and on Sunday afternoons at 2:00 p.m. between May 31st and June 23rd.  We hope to see you there!
Call the box office at (650) 359-8002 or go to to make reservations.

Submitted by Laurie Frater

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Facebook threats to Speier probed

Several active-duty Marines are being investigated by federal law enforcement for allegedly threatening a local congresswoman through social media.

U.S. Capitol Police launched the investigation after U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Mateo, received threatening and disparaging messages on Facebook from the now-defunct page “F*** You Jackie Speier.”

“Free speech is one thing, hate speech is another,” Speier said Tuesday.

Speier said she could not divulge the nature of the threats but confirmed that the page featured a doctored image of her with a black eye and a comment that said, “Someone ought to struggle snuggle the s*** out of her.”

The Facebook page also displayed several other messages and pictures celebrating misogyny and violence toward women, including a photo that showed a woman lying at the bottom of a staircase with the caption, “Next time don’t get pregnant.”

Read more at the San Francisco Examiner:

Posted by Steve Sinai

Understanding the Basics of County and City Revenues

This document is about five years old, but except for a few figures, it's still worth reading.

Posted by Steve Sinai

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

This Saturday, Get Stuffed!

Posted by Steve Sinai

California Coastal Commission's 20-Year Limits on Sea Walls

Atop the ocean bluff are the homes of those fortunate to own a piece of
land overlooking the dramatic California coastline. Down on the beach are the surfers, swimmers and beachcombers lucky for a sliver of sand that skirts caves and coves in this paradise north of San Diego. 

Dividing the two is a crumbling 80-foot cliff that forms a battle line between homeowners who built concrete walls to prevent their houses from sliding into the sea and those who want to put limits on how long they can fend off the waters.

The powerful California Coastal Commission is imposing 20-year caps on permits to build sea walls, setting up a classic debate over public beach access and property rights as sea levels continue to rise and relentless surf threatens to erode a way of life along 1,100 miles of shore.

Since 2010, the agency has set 20-year expiration dates on a private tennis club in Pebble Beach, a 13-unit apartment building in San Diego, two houses in Santa Cruz, a 19-unit apartment building in nearby Capitola, a 260-unit apartment complex in the San Francisco-area town of Pacifica and several homes in Solana Beach and neighboring Encinitas.


Posted by Steve Sinai

City Council tonight, Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Attend in person, 2212 Beach Boulevard, 2nd floor.  Or, view on local channel 26, also live internet feed,  The meeting begins at 7pm, or shortly there following.  City council updates and archives are available on the City website.    Direct - City Council Agenda 5/28/13. 

Fix Pacifica City Council Agenda article. 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

State Academic Performance Index (API) ratings, Pacifica Schools

Silicon Valley Mercury/Oakland Tribune/Danny Willis, 5/24/13.  "Data Center: 2012 base API school scores and rankings."  State rating are 1 through 10 (higher scores, closer to 10 are better).  Thornton continuation High School is a B. 

High School
DistrictSchool2012 Base APIRankSimilar Schools Rank
Jefferson Union HighOceana High80485
Jefferson Union HighWestmoor High80272
Jefferson Union HighTerra Nova High78773
Jefferson Union HighJefferson High69431
Jefferson Union HighThornton High518BB

Elementary School
DistrictSchool2012 Base APIRankSimilar Schools Rank
PacificaCabrillo Elementary89893
PacificaVallemar Elementary87883
PacificaOrtega Elementary86074
PacificaOcean Shore Elementary85771
PacificaSunset Ridge Elementary84877
PacificaIngrid B. Lacy Middle82561
PacificaLinda Mar Educational Center7362

ReferenceCalifornia Department of Education, reports include school, district, county, state, and more. 
RelatedSilicon Valley Mercury News/Sharon Noguchi, 5/25/13, "State school API rankings show middle school can be tough, but some excel." "As California's Academic Performance Index scores released Friday indicate, even districts with high-scoring elementary schools falter in grades 6, 7 and 8.  .... The rankings are based on results of tests taken in spring 2012."

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day, Monday, May 27, 2013

Richard Arvine Overton, born 5/11/1906, looking good at 107
The oldest living veteran this year (according to Fox News) is 107 years old.

Fox News/Military/Joshua Rhett Miller, 5/24/13, "America's oldest veteran to spend quiet Memorial Day at Texas home."

For his 107th Memorial Day, Richard Arvine Overton, who saw many of his fellow soldiers fall in the line of duty in World War II and even more die over the following decades, is planning a quiet day at the Texas home he built after returning home from World War II.  He wouldn’t want it any other way.

Overton, who is believed to be the nation's oldest veteran, told he’ll likely spend the day on the porch of his East Austin home with a cigar nestled in his right hand, perhaps with a cup of whiskey-stiffened coffee nearby. “I don’t know, some people might do something for me, but I’ll be glad just to sit down and rest,” the Army veteran said during a phone interview. “I’m no young man no more.”   Read article.  Note:  Photographs of Richard Arvine Overton from the article

Reference articles US Department of Veterans Affairs. "Memorial Day, which is observed on the last Monday of May, commemorates the men and women who died while in the military service.  In observance of the holiday, many people visit cemeteries and memorials, and volunteers often place American flags on each grave site at national cemeteries.  A national moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time." - ".... Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. Many Americans observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades. Unofficially, at least, it marks the beginning of summer."  And,  US Memorial Day organization.

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Sunday, May 26, 2013

City calendar this week, May 28-31

Kale Alderson visits the Chico grave of his father, World War II veteran John Alderson, who died at 89 in a Yuba City nursing home three months before the Department of Veterans Affairs approved his benefits. Photo: Michael Short
Memorial Day, Monday, 5/27/13

City of Pacifica calendar, and other city meetings.  Any event you may wish to add, please advise.  PCT26 calendar

Monday, 5/28 - Memorial Day Holiday

Tuesday, 5/29 Regular City Council meeting, 7 PM, City Council Chambers,  2212 Beach Boulevard.  Televised.

Wednesday, 5/29
City council interviews for Planning Commission, 6 PM, Pacifica Police Station EOC room, 2017 Coast Highway.  
Regular Parks, Beaches and Recreation meeting, 7 PM, City Council Chambers, 2212 Beach Boulevard. 

Thursday, 5/30 - no meetings.   Friday, 5/31 - no meetings. 

Note:  Photograph by Michael Short from a  San Francisco Chronicle article. 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Pacifica Beaches report cards, May 30 days, 2013; and Annual, 2012-13

Sharp Park Beach is "honor role" clean
Heal the Bay 30 day "Beach Report Card"

30 day dry weather Report Card ending 5/20/13.  Historical data from March 2006 forward is included. 
Linda Mar Beach at San Pedro Creek, A+
Rockaway Beach at Calera Creek, A+
Sharp Park Beach, projection of Birch Lane, A+
Sharp Park Beach, projection of San Jose Avenue, A+

But longer term, the year round view is recorded in Heal the Bay 23rd Annual Report Card, 2012-13, (100 pages).  Note:  Sharp Park Beach (projection at San Jose Avenue) received  San Mateo County "Honor Roll recognition, along with Montara State Beach (at Martini Creek), bottom of page 78. 

The 2012-13 Annual Heal the Bay Report measures 1) Summer Dry (April through October), 2) Winter Dry (November through March), and 3) Wet Weather (year round).  San Mateo County grades are listed on pages 88 and 89.

Linda Mar Beach, usual Wet Weather grade "D"
Grades are listed by Summer Dry, Winter Dry, Wet Weather (year round).
Linda Mar Beach at San Pedro Creek,  A, A, D
Rockaway Beach at Calera Creek, A+, A+, A
Sharp Park Beach, projection of Birch Lane, A, A+, A+
Sharp Park Beach, projection of San Jose Avenue, A+, A+, A+

Okay, Linda Mar Beach still gets a D grade during wet weather, but that's better than an F, and remediation is underway. 

Note:  Photographs upper from San Francisco Chronicle, lower from Scuba San Mateo.
Posted by Kathy Meeh

Open Space Committee

With 24 years participation turning this city into Parkland, Open Space deserves to be absorbed into their GGNRA prize. 

Pacifica Tribune, Letters to the Editor, 5/21/13, "Consolidation" by Dan Underhill.

"Editor:  I finished work too late to make it to the City Council meeting about the possible termination of the Pacifica Open Space Committee. I gathered from some of the member's previous comments that there was a plan to seek some political cover by instituting another committee that would take on, and be limited to, a few of the Open Space Committee's functions.

"The development could be seen from top of the quarry, scale it back" (Noel Brincoe)
I got home in time to hear on TV26 part of Lynn Adams' response to this plan and, while I regretted not getting to present my own two cents worth, I doubt that anything I might have said would have been as eloquent or powerful as what she had to say. I was pleased that the council recognized that their present plan ain't it, if indeed that is what they recognized.

I was somewhat disturbed by the ensuing discussion that sounded an awful lot like an attempt to establish that the council could, if it chose, appoint ringers to the Open Space Committee. I am hoping that I heard that wrong. I am hoping that we all come to recognize that good stewardship is good business even if it does not turn a fabulous profit in the short term. We are all presently benefiting from responsible decisions of past Pacificans. Let's do the same for future ones."

And from Pacifica Riptide/Dan Underhill, Correspondent, 5/22/13. "Open Space Committee survives for now."  ".... The Open Space Committee never really had any teeth and has operated mainly in an advisory capacity, helping council understand issues that might not be immediately obvious unless they were one's primary focus.  ....  No Open Space Committee means no official notification of council on these issues. There are always moneyed developers ready to build as shoddily and densely as they possibly can get away with. The imagination reels. ....  It may be that particular functions (for example, interfacing with GGNRA and the National Park Service) will be handled by a subcommittee of the Open Space Committee rather than being the fig leaf that covers intentional elimination of the committee. We can all thank and encourage our council for this."  Read article.  Be sure to read aggressive comments following this Riptide blog article.  Yes, I remember how "easy" it was to get developments through Planning (the delays, the 1/3 project chop, appeals, consultation with Open Space and other ad hoc NIMBY "committees").  We remember, we were there.   Note: the Fassler Avenue hill photograph is from Zillow.   Reference - Open Space Committee, "Agenda Archives" indicate meeting cancellations (no quorum) for more than one year. 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Oceana Art Gallery in the news, artist James Torlakson

It seems to me the Eureka Square Shopping Center owner, Mike Biagini of  Biagini Properties, Inc. deserves credit for this one.  Gallery space provided low cost or "free"? 

James Torlakson, Vasu Narayana, Rig Terrell, Elizabeth Marshall
Oceana Gallery on Facebook slide show
The Daily Journal (San Mateo), Samantha Weigel, 5/25/13.  "A space for art in Pacifica:  Top-notch artists, community all welcome at Oceana Art Gallery."

The Oceana Art Gallery is located next to the Oceana Market, among several empty storefronts. Elizabeth Marshall, her mother Kay Marshall and Rig Terrell are all co-directors of the revamped location. Vasu Narayanan, owner of the Oceana Market, is the driving force behind the gallery’s fruition. 

Narayanan, along with the Economic Development Committee of Pacifica and the Art Guild of Pacifica, took inspiration from the aftermath of New Orleans’ Hurricane Katrina by following a unique model created by the artistic community of the ravaged city. By using empty storefronts to hang art in pop-up galleries, the resilient citizens of New Orleans were able to restore some of the shopping areas. By making them appear more populated and accessible, Narayanan said they encouraged people to return to the area.

Photo realist painter James Torlakson is currently exhibiting a large collection of his internationally recognized paintings through June 23. Torlakson typically shows his work in large metropolitan cities across the country and is part of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection. When approached by Elizabeth Marshall to display his work, he was delighted to assist the community-spirited gallery, Torlakson said. His rarely seen coastal landscape paintings are included in his 49-piece exhibit, Torlakson said.  Read article, includes the event photograph above left. 

Reference -  Oceana Arts, Gallery hours:  Friday 3–7 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 1-5 p.m, or by appointment.  James Torlakson data website.

Related article -  Pacifica Tribune. 5/7/13, "The Oceana Gallery is proud to present its latest art exhibition of artworks by James Torlakson. The exhibition will run from May 17 through June 23." 

 Posted by Kathy Meeh

With highway 1 access, commercial and residential space may be developed

55 acre property north of the Lutheran church
Pacifica Tribune, Letters to the Editor,k 5/21/13. "Highway widening" by Todd McCune Bray

"Editor:  I received a letter from Caltrans dated 2009 written by R.A. Macpherson, Deputy District Director for Caltrans District 4 (which includes Pacifica) explaining the promise made to the property owner of 55 acres north to the Lutheran church, Mr. David Thomas of Walnut Creek, to provide the owner with highway access post widening project which is a growth inducing impact of the proposed widening that was not included in the projects draft environment document (DEIR). 

....   However I understand the 55 acre property, which is currently accepting sealed bids (you may have seen the sign next to the Lutheran church advertising for same), does boast of having Caltrans approval for an entry to the highway for 55 acres of property zoned for commercial and residential development. ...."  Read article. 

Related  -Pacifica Riptide article, "Rockaway Hillside on the Auction Block", 10/15/2009, includes a land area map outline.  Note:  Photograph from this article.   

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Friday, May 24, 2013

Planning commission interviews don't make everyone happy

Pacifica Tribune Letters to the Editor, 5/21/13.  "Palace coup" by BJ Nathanson

"Editor:  It is with great distress that I hear of Council's decision to arbitrarily put all seven Planning Commission seats up for grabs at the end of the month. This is not democracy, it is a palace coup.

Dinner !
"Palace coup", something like the tea party 
taking over the Republican Party?
While I truly believe that each Councilmember is an honorable person with the best of intentions, the end does not justify the means. No single council has had the power to shape the entire commission at once, nor should it have that power. Yes, there have been excesses from time to time, but those can be balanced in a tempered way as each term expires. The point of staggering those terms is not fanciful. It maintains the integrity of the Commission.

The Council has also taken action to streamline the Planning Department's policies. While I agree that it was onerous to have single family dwellers go through a prolonged and expensive "process" in front of an overly zealous Commission, removing the Commission from meaningful surveillance is a grave mistake.

I understand the need for economic progress in these hard times, but we must not sacrifice the quality of life that we hold so dear in the name of that cause. The urbanization of Pacifica would be a permanent and irreparable loss. As guardians of the Coast, we have an obligation to see not only dollar signs. We must be stronger and better than that."

Posted by Kathy Meeh

City council interviews for the Planning Commission, Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Police station public parking, turn left
According to the PCT 26 calendar these interviews are not televised.  If you attend, be aware that parking is available in the small front parking lot or off the highway.

Pacifica Tribune, author unknown, 5/21/13. "Public meetings coming up."

"Last week, City Council established new rules about city commissions that requires all the standing members of the commission to reapply for their positions.

Current Planning Commissioners Thomas Clifford, Richard Campbell, Josh Gordon, Chuck Evans, Celeste Langille and Michael Brown have all reapplied for their positions. Commissioner Leo Leon has not reapplied for his position. They are being joined by new applicants Mary Brown, Lisa Villasenor, William Keaney, Allen Federman, Jeffrey Cooper, Sue Vaterlaus, Connie Menefee, John Nibbelan, Victor Spano and Mike Bell.

The City Council will be interviewing applicants for the Planning Commission on Wednesday, May 29 at 6 p.m. at the Pacifica Police Station EOC room, located at 2075 Coast Highway."   Read more.

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Thursday, May 23, 2013

City council agenda, Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Attend in person, 2212 Beach Boulevard, 2nd floor.  Or, view on local channel 26, also live internet feed,  The meeting begins at 7pm, or shortly there following.  City council updates and archives are available on the City website.   City Council Agenda 5/28/13.   Items listed may include embedded pdf documents, illustration and photographs of interest. The information below is restated or summarized from the city agenda documents. Additional links or comments may be added.

Closed session, 6:00 p.m.
1.    CA government code 54957.6.  Conference with labor negotiator: Agency negotiator: Ann Ritzma. Employee organizations: Pacifica Firefighters Local 2400; Local 856 Battalion Chiefs; Department Directors Local 350; Wastewater Treatment Plant Employees Local 856; Miscellaneous Local 856; Managers Local 350; Police Officers Assn.; Police Supervisors Assn.; Police Management Local 350.
2.   CA government code 54957.  Public Employee Appointment: Title: Interim City Manager.

Open session, 7:00 p.m. 
Consent calendar
1.    Approval of disbursements - 05/01/13-05/15/13 - FY 2012/2013.
2.    Approval of  City Council Minutes May 13, 2013.
3.    Adopt sewer charges, with projected future increases FY 3013-16, 2nd reading.
4.    Adopt designation, clarification of beaches, beach parking areas, parks and mini-parks, 2nd reading.
5.    Adopt commission appointment ordinance revision, 2nd reading.
Item 12, missing CIP information
6.    Resolution to dispose of (destroy) certain old city documents and papers:  Obsolete Records Destruction.
7.    Approval of service, purchase agreement with Mackay Meeters, Inc. for Pacifica State Beach. 
8.    Approve CEQA addendum to the Highway 1, San Pedro Creek Bridge replacement and creek widening project. 
9.   Administrative Cost Allocation Plan (CAP),  identification in keeping with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB-87) reimbursement principals, advisement from Willdan Financial Services, Consultants, 5/20/13.
Special presentations 
Rod Clark Poet laureate
National Flood Insurance Program community rating system plaque
Public hearing
10.  Gas and Electric Utilities user's tax, Staff recommendation to leave as is at 6.5%
11.   Consideration to increase user fees, thus updating administrative policy #2.
12.  Resolution to adopt the 2013-14 Capital Improvement Program (CIP), as reviewed "consistent with the General Plan" by the Planning Commission, 5/6/13.  (Note: the list includes Fire Stations 71 and 72 replacement, Pacifica State Beach Parking, relocation of sewer mainline at Sharp Park, lateral grant assistance, forecemain conditions assessment;  but, Planning Commission pages 22-34 are omitted. These missing pages are also not included in the City Council Agenda, hence the proposed CIP improvements are not really transparent). 
13.  Resolution to establish parking fees and fines for parking at Pacifica State Beach and Crespi Parking lots:  per vehicle, $3 less than 4 hours, $6 more than 4 hours (all day); annual permit $50; individual citation $38. 
14.  Resolution to review budgets, Funds 40 (debt); 65 (self funded dental plan): 66 (self funded workers compensation); 67 (self funded general liability). 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Electric car charging stations increasing in California

Are electric car charging stations included in Pacifica infrastructure planning? 

Los Gatos Weekly Times/Judy Peterson, 5/21/13, "Electrifying new rules for charging spaces in downtown Los Gatos."  

Los Gatos downtown
....  "When the town installed charging stations last June, it was with the understanding that they would be in parking spaces that could also be used by internal combustion vehicles. There are EV charging stations on S. Santa Cruz Avenue across from the Toll House Hotel, in the parking lot between Elm and Main streets, in the lot between Royce Avenue and Grays Lane and next to the library on Villa Avenue.

But allowing non-electric vehicles to use the spaces has proved problematic because internal combustion vehicles are apparently keeping the EVs out. "As a result, visiting electric vehicles are not able to use the charging infrastructure that the council has authorized and put into place," resident Dennis Mc-Evoy said. McEvoy charges his EV at home and said he doesn't need to use the charging stations in town.

.... The council voted unanimously to convert the charging stations to exclusive EV use while charging. Signs will be posted when the new policy takes effect, but the council did not set a timeline for implementation."  Read article. 

Andrew Utter plugging his converted Toyota Prius into a charging station across the street from City Hall in San Francisco.
20 minutes, 80% charge
Related Autoblog green/Danny King,  blog, 5/8/13,  "The EV Open Access Act, or SB454, was recently passed by the California Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee. The bill guarantees plug-in owners "same access" to publicly accessible charging stations as conventional car owners have to gas stations. ....  That California took the lead here is no surprise. Californians have bought more than 35,000 plug-ins – more than a third of all the plug-ins in the US – since 2011. As of the end of last month, the Golden State was home to 1,276 publicly accessible charging stations, or more than a fifth of the country's total, according to the US Energy Department." Other Autoblog green articles.

Christian Science Monitor/John Voelcker (opinion), 2/28/13, "Are California's electric-car charging stations too congested? "California is by far the largest single market for electric cars, Voelcker writes, and that means charging stations in public parking lots are now sometimes fully occupied, meaning they can't recharge their electric cars' batteries."   NBC/Business 5/17/13, "Expect millions of electric car charging stations by 2020," San Francisco plug in, lower right photograph.  Los Gatos, CA city data, population 29,502, household income $117,669 (2009);  upper left photograph from Vine Times, 4/7/11.

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Pigs can't fly, but they can clear the land and garbage

Half Moon Bay Review/Mark Noack, 5/15/13.  "Pigs take aim at problem plants,  Pescadero farm makes use of pigs' taste for everything."

See how nice we mix with the cows and chickens
"...  Now a nascent Pescadero farm startup, Early Bird Ranch, is experimenting with harnessing pigs’ destructive talents for the good of all. The ranch, started in 2011 by two graduate students disenchanted with academia, is trying to focus pigs’ appetites on troublesome plants that are difficult to eradicate. Not only can pigs’ ravenous appetites be fine-tuned to devour nuisance plants, said Early Bird co-owner Kevin Watt, but it can also produce some top-grade pork in the process.

What else you got?
....  Squealing with delight, 40 of the ranch’s pigs were stuffing themselves Monday morning on a smorgasbord of thorny blackberry vines, poison oak leaves and eucalyptus seed pods. Watt piled on more to that buffet, dumping a mound of overripe iceberg lettuce and moldy breads rescued from the trashcan. Snouts in the ground, tails in the air, the hogs gorged on a meal that would turn any human’s stomach. They were, to borrow a phrase, as happy as pigs wallowing in mud.

.... Early Bird owners say there is a method to their work beyond giving pigs free rein on a piece of land. As tenants on TomKat Ranch, Early Bird has the luxury of ample grazing land on which to rotate the pigs and other livestock. An acre of land that the pigs graze heavily for a week might be given two years to regrow its vegetation. The pigs don’t try to escape so long as the humans keep their side of the bargain, Watt said.  Early Bird also raises goats and chickens, and the farm is experimenting with rotating the different animals. This year, the farm is working with the Point Reyes Bird Observatory to track the biodiversity and soil content from the animal grazing."  Read article.

Posted by Kathy Meeh

Monday, May 20, 2013

Hall of Famer Ken Venturi, Honorary Chairman of SF Public Golf Alliance, dies at 82





1.   San Francisco favorite son Ken Venturi, 1964 U.S. Open champion, CBS TV golf analyst, recent World Golf Hall of Fame inductee, and Honorary Chairman of SF Public Golf Alliance, died Friday, May 17.   Ken was a beloved great champion who never forgot his roots in San Francisco public golf, and who urged golfers to "defend San Francisco's golf heritage and public courses... with your time, your money, and your passion:  do not let anybody destroy Sharp or Lincoln."  
(i)  See letter, Ken Venturi, Oct. 12, 2009; to download:    
(iii)  See Golf Digest interview with Ken Venturi, December, 2004:
2.  Reyhan Griffin,  a 13-year-old student at the San Francisco First Tee program's Visitacion Valley and Harding Park programs, last month won the national "Succeeding Together" video contest, sponsored by the national First Tee organization.  Reyhan, who carries a 4.0 grade point average at A.P. Giannini Middle School, submitted the following video telling of his passion for golf:
3.   And Don't Forget the Alister MacKenzie Tournament to Save Sharp Park, Saturday, June 22, 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. shotguns.  Be There.  Bring your foursome.  Here is link to download the entry form and sponsor sign-up:  

Donations are greatly appreciated. To donate, please visit our website: Donations Page

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Submitted by Richard Harris