Sunday, July 27, 2014

RootStock kicks off ‘Día de Albariño’ at local tasting rooms

July 28, 2014 |

Spanish themed music will be performed at local tasting rooms this Saturday, August 2nd, to celebrate “Día de Albariño”

Downtown Winters tasting rooms will be celebrating the release of their Albariño this weekend. There will be music, tasting, and food to kick off this fun day! At RootStock from 2-5pm, Route 3 will be offering a complimentary tasting of their recently bottled Albariño. Later on in the evening, Berryessa Gap and Turkovich Wines will be releasing their Albariño. All of the grapes are grown locally and thrive in in our warm, dry climate.

This is a Spanish grape varietal that loves to absorb our warm, California sunshine. This varietal was originally grown in Northwest Spain and Portugal, and descends from the Riesling clone in France. You may have noticed it in classic wine blends along with Vino Verde, but in recent years has become popular in it’s own right. Albariño is known for having a clean taste with hints of fruit like apricot and high acid notes.

In the afternoon, Route 3 will be offering complimentary tastings of their 2013 Albariño at RootStock. Along with wine, there will be locally crafted cheeses to pair with this bright summer wine. To help with global atmosphere, there will be Spanish music playing in the tasting room as well. In the evening Berryessa Gap, will have a complimentary tasting of their 2013 Albariño along food, music and more! Turkovich Wines will be having a tasting experience in their Downtown tasting room as well!

Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-summer, tasting experience in Downtown Winters!

For more information on any of these events call 530-794-6008 or visit



Chris Smither 2014

July 29, 2014 |

Songwriter and guitarist Chris Smither will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2, at The Palms Playhouse, 13 Main St. in Winters. Courtesy photo



Special to The Enterprise

Smither releases new CD Saturday at The Palms

July 29, 2014 |

Blues/folk singer, songwriter and guitarist Chris Smither made a splash in the 1960s and early ’70s — and then walked away from music for most of a decade.
After fighting some personal demons, he re-entered the musical fray in the ’80s and has remained a songwriting and performing force whose fans include such luminaries as Bonnie Raitt and Dave Alvin. This year Smither marks 50 years in music with three releases including the career-spanning double-CD retrospective “Still On The Levee.” Smither will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2, at The Palms Playhouse, 13 Main St. in Winters.

“One-third John Hurt, one-third Lightnin’ Hopkins and one-third me” is how Smither describes is his guitar-playing, but his music draws on a number of American styles. Raised in New Orleans, Smither relocated to Boston in the 1960s at the height of the folk revival. But New Orleans left its indelible stamp.

“As far as the musical influences of the town, I didn’t know anything else,” Smither recalled at JazzFest earlier this year. “It’s like asking a fish what water’s like. … I didn’t understand what sort of things from New Orleans influenced me until I left.”

Smither combines the sultry groove of New Orleans’ acoustic blues with the precise, thoughtful wordsmithing of the New England folk tradition. Combined with finger-style guitar that chimes and flows and a voice like water-smoothed gravel Smither creates music that is beguiling, witty and wise.

Smither’s music — be it recorded or live — can flows over listeners like a deliciously languid New Orleans summer night; watch or listen more closely, however, and the depth of the lyrics and complexity of the guitar playing are revealed as gems hidden in plain sight.

“Train Home” (first released in 2003 and re-recorded for this year’s “Still On The Levee”) is a quintessential example. On one hand, it’s a catchy song with a driving beat (supplied by Smither’s foot) and an eminently hummable refrain. On the other hand, it’s a blues song with existential overtones about the existence, or not, of afterlife and why that matters (or not) to people.

Last week, Signature Sounds released “Still On The Levee,” a two-CD retrospective with a 50-year span of Smither’s songs. No mere reissue of previous releases, “Still On The Levee” pulls songs from Smither’s previous 15 albums and features them in reimagined formats. Smither returned to New Orleans to record the album, and worked with luminaries such as Allen Toussaint, Loudon Wainwright III and rock band Morphine on selected songs.

And those early New Orleans and Delta influences? “I kept it up,” says Smither. “I was just sort of addicted to it.”

Tickets are $25 and are available at Armadillo Music in Davis, Watermelon Music in Woodland, Pacific Ace Hardware in Winters and at the door if not sold out.

For more information, visit and



Are we there yet?: ‘RV’ there yet? — Amazing and agonizing adventures


July 30, 2014 |

Having recently completed an eight-day motorhome trek through Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks, I have some wisdom to share on this kind of vacation.

So as not to bury the lede, let me just say I have no idea if I would recommend this trip.

Actually, I would totally recommend it to kids. It is awesome when you’re a kid, which is partly why we did this now.

My younger brother and I went on an amazing three-week RV adventure with our dad and step-mom when we were 13 and nine years old. When adult-me thinks about this trip, it’s all fond memories and incredible highlights. But there’s no way that was the case for the adults along this trip.

Because amazingly, besides the four of us in the RV, there were my uncle and aunt, their three-year-old and their — you’re going to think I’m making this up — two-week-old baby. As a kid, I didn’t realize how brave/crazy/unbelievable it was that my aunt agreed to this/that my dad agreed to this. (This is turning into a “choose your own adventure” story. “Who was crazier? The mom with the newborn or the dad who hates crying babies?”)

Anyway, the eight of us left Los Angeles and headed across the bottom of the country, with a goal of hitting most of the perimeter states of the U.S. Here are the highlights I remember: stopping at Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico and watching an explosion of bats; visiting family in Texas; rolling through the French Quarter of New Orleans (beignets and beads!); and visiting family in Florida, with a day devoted to Disneyworld.

From there, we headed up the east coast. We saw the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia; visited friends in New York City (I swear we drove our massive motorhome down the streets of Manhattan); and cruised the Maid of the Mist under Niagara Falls.

Across the top of the country we visited family on their farm in Michigan; went to Yellowstone and Grand Tetons national parks; and ended up in Las Vegas (Circus Circus!) before heading back to Los Angeles.

I’m sure we saw many other things along the way, but this is what I remember.

What I don’t remember were the massive arguments and stress-induced outbursts that must have been regular events as the adults navigated where to eat, where to sleep, and where to park all over the country. Imagine a trip like this where you had no Internet to help with where to leave a motorhome in Manhattan, kid-friendly tours, alternate routes when you hit Atlanta at rush hour, places to camp or park an RV overnight … were the adults drunk the whole time to keep from being annoyed by all this?

Looking back, I honestly only remember the fun.

So my husband and I, along with my brother, our mom and our kids recently did a far-less ambitious trip. We flew to Jackson, WY, where the eight of us rented a motorhome.

Not driving from home, however, meant that as soon as we got the motorhome, we had to go to the grocery store for everything! We hadn’t made a list of what we would make for meals — duh! — so my mom and I quickly declared at least one meal a day would be at a restaurant.

For two hours, all eight of us wandered a gigantic, unfamiliar grocery store in Jackson, WY, trying to decide what we would want to eat. Our first night we had cheese and crackers for dinner to recover from our shopping trip.

When we headed for our campsite, we realized another major oversight. Turns out, when I reserved a campsite that was big enough for a motorhome, I assumed it had motorhome hookups. Rookie mistake. Not having hookups meant we were on edge about how much we used the water, shower and toilet in the RV, plus we felt kind of jerky when we roared our generator next to campers who were roughing it in tents out in nature.

We also quickly realized that having a motorhome as your main mode of transportation is not easy in some ways, especially parking in a crowded national park. Some roads were actually off-limits to RVs, so we might have missed some things by driving such a behemoth.

Indeed, there were plenty of other forehead-smacking moments, but you get the drift.

However, as we’d hoped, the kids had a total blast. Although there were plenty of stressful and alcohol-craving moments for the adults, all four kids said they want to buy motorhomes when they grow up and do this kind of trip with their kids. They especially loved “traveling by bed,” flopping on the queen-sized bed looking out the back window, or roaming around while we drove.

Thus, if you do a cost-benefit analysis on this kind of trip, you might have a hard time justifying the expense and the amount of effort it takes. But if you are looking to make lifelong great memories for your kids — and yourselves, because the hard parts have already faded for my husband and me — it’s totally worth it.

— Tanya Perez is a staff writer at The Enterprise. Her column publishes every other Wednesday. Reach her at Follow her on Twitter at @enterprisetanya



Hear live music at Monticello

July 29, 2014 |

Ricardo Rosales will play classical bassoon from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays throughout August at Monticello Seasonal Cuisine, 630 G St.
His musical stylings will be paired with wine tasting from Enterprise Wineaux columnist Susan Leonardi.
Fridays feature Bob Wren (violin and octave mandolin) playing World music, Klezmer, jazz, Django Reinhardt, folk and Baroque from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Ken Kemmerling plays jazz piano from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturdays.
Sundays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. feature a variety of stylings. On Aug. 10, Bob and Donna Wren will play folk and classical. On Aug. 27, Jon Spivack will play jazz guitar and Aug. 24 has George Sheldon and Sandra Carter with “Be Here Now.”



Enterprise staff

Fay Evans 100 years young

July 29, 2014 |

On February 24th, 1914, a baby girl named Fay Evans was born in Chicago. Four months later, Europe – and later the world – was thrown into chaos by the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, and the advent of worldwide war.
And while World War I has long since been laid to rest in the history books, Fay, who now sports the last name of Libet, is still going strong.
Libet was born to a family of Eastern European Jews in a Jewish neighborhood of Chicago. She was immersed in Jewish culture, and entered first grade speaking only one language – Yiddish.
She took quickly to school, especially when it came to reading.
“Other kids went off and played hockey or something else,” Libet said of her childhood. “But I had to have a book in my hands.”
Her parents were very supportive of her education, which was unusual for the times, especially for a poor family like hers. Libet excelled in school, and graduated high school with a multitude of options.
One such option was teaching school, which she enrolled in at first, but found it to be not quite her taste.
“I went to a school for teachers,” Libet said. “But it was too much like high school… I didn’t like it.“
She soon left teaching school, and began attending the University of Chicago. It was there that she met a man named Benjamin Libet, who earned his doctorate from the university in 1939 at the age of 23, and later became a prominent neuroscientist. Fay graduated from Chicago a year later, and by 1946, the two were husband and wife.
After a couple of stops in Albany, NY and Philadelphia, Benjamin became a professor of physiology at UCSF. The couple moved to Burlingame, in the Bay Area, and it was there that the Libets raised their four children; Julian, Ralph, Moreen and Gayla.
While in Burlingame, Fay found a way to combine to of her passions – music and teaching. Music had always been a big part of her life, dating back to when her father bought her a piano while living in Chicago, an exorbitant purchase for her relatively poor family.
“My father brought home a piano,” Libet said. “He’d been saving for months in order to buy it… he told me, ‘I spent a lot of money on this, so you’d better play it every day.”
The Libets relocated for a final time with the turn of the millennium, as they found a house in Davis in 2000. The couple lived there for seven years, until 2007, when Benjamin Libet died at the age of 91. Fay still lives in Davis by herself, next door to Ralph, a physician and her second son.
Much has changed in the world since Fay entered it. In 1914, the Ottoman Empire ruled Turkey and the area around it, Franz Ferdinand was an archduke, Woodrow Wilson was the President, and the Chicago Cubs were five years into their World Series drought. In the years spanning from then to now, two world wars were waged, man set foot on the moon, the Soviet Union rose and fell, and the Internet became a staple of modern life.
Fay Libet has been around for every one of those monumental events. And with a little luck, she’ll be around for some more.



Brady earns top honors at State Fair

July 29, 2014 |

Susan Whitley Brady, the former owner of the Farmer’s Wife Bakery in Davis and a 1963 MFA graduate from UC Davis, won an Award of Excellence for her mixed-media painting that was selected for the California Fine Art Show at the State Fair this year.
Brady earned her bachelor’s degree in 1962 from UCD and her master’s degree in art studio in 1964. Among her professors were Wayne Thiebaud, Ralph Johnson, William Wiley and Roland Peterson.
There were 181 works selected from more than 1,300 entries this year for the Fine Art Show at the Fair. Of those, 20 received an Award of Excellence which came with a $250 cash prize.



Enterprise staff

Legacy ’99 girls just miss title in elite San Diego Surf Cup

July 29, 2014 |

SAN DIEGO — Going undefeated in the first five games, the Davis Legacy Soccer Club ’99 girls came up just short in a rematch with SD Surf Academy, losing 1-0 in the championship game at the San Diego Surf Cup on Monday.

Ranked 28th nationally by Got Soccer magazine (No. 3 in Northern California), the Legacy (U16) used a stifling defense to earlier stop SD Surf, 1-0, on Sunday.

In that victory it was a tally from Shingle Spring’s Mia Root off an all-business serve from Davis High’s Gabby Hernandez that did the trick.

Along the way, the Legacy defense — paced by netminder Dani Lawson (Sacramento) and backline stalwarts Blue Devils Josie Baca and Alex Diaz and out-of-towner Camille Renaud — held all six opponents to a tournament-low three goals.

“It was a final-minute goal that beat us,” Legacy coach David Robertson told The Enterprise by telephone. “It was a nice run. Some great teams.”

Like the nation’s 25th-rated San Diego team, which was just coming off the Elite Club National League U.S. title.

In the 16-team Elite Division of the Surf Cup, Davis had previously stopped the Southern California Eagles, 2-1, and the FC United (Illinois), 2-0, on Saturday before topping The Academy, 1-0, early Sunday to win its pool and advance to the first round of the eight-team one-and-done brackets.

Legacy ’99 routed Arsenal FC (Bowers), 4-1, later in the day on Sunday. The 1-0 victory over Real Soccer Club set up the championship rematch in the invitational-only shootout.

In the locals’ opening victory, Julia Curtis scored both goals versus the Eagles. (“She was a stud,” commented Robertson.)

Julia Cummings (Fairfield) and Theresa Borge (Vacaville) shook the net against FC United while Root (twice), Borge and Hernandez scored in the Arsenal rout.

It was Hernandez again, with under 10 minutes remaining, who provided the margin of victory versus Real Soccer Club in Monday’s 1-0 nail-biter.

Fans need to go back only two weeks to remember Davis’ last tournament title — the Pleasanton Showcase. In May, Legacy ’99 took the Santa Clara Invitational. The City of Las Vegas Mayor’s Cup International was another championship earned by the local club in February.

Now Davis Soccer Club Legacy ’99 turns its attention to league play, which begins next month throughout the region.



Enterprise staff

Molten art on display at Davis Arts Center

July 29, 2014 |

Members of the Sierra Wax Artists — the Sacramento chapter of International Encaustic Artists — will display their “Wax On” group exhibit from Aug. 6 to Sept. 5 at the Davis Arts Center, 1919 F St. There is a free public open house from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8.
The exhibit features the ancient process of working with bee’s wax and tree resin in a molten state. This translucent — and aromatic — medium dates back to 1st century Rome and is typically heated, transferred to wood panels, and then sculptured, textured or combined with other materials to create unique works of great depth and complexity. Encaustic art is seeing a resurgence today in many fine art forms, including mixed media, sculpture, print-making and many other techniques.

The gallery hour is open from 9:30 to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9:30 to 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m Saturday.



Enterprise staff

Curbside recycling celebrates 40 years

July 29, 2014 |

The city of Davis boasts a plethora of environmental interest organizations and was dubbed the “Coolest California City” in 2013. Davis residents celebrate the Whole Earth Festival every Spring, students study Environmental Science, and, lastly, residents recycle.

40 years ago, Davis began a curbside recycling program. It was not only one of the first of its kind in Davis, but in the nation as well. A handful of other recycling efforts in Berkeley, CA and Woodbury, NJ are among the only the preceded the Davis program in the nation.

Davis’ historical interest in the environment took appears in the original curbside recycling program and has since blossomed to one of the most impressive efforts in the nation.

What is now a five-day a week recycling operation started with one man – Richard Gertman. In 1970, Gertman, a graduate student and self-proclaimed “mild activist”, was originally looking for a way to raise funds so the Geology Club at UC Davis could go on field trips.

Gertman’s solution was to start the Recycling Committee. Armed with eight boxes left behind by the Salvation Army, Gertman set up newspaper collection bins placed near schools and grocery stores. He encouraged students to use the bins for recycling and would stash the newspapers in his garage. When a truck load could be filled, Gertman would transport them to a facility in Sacramento for money, he recalled.

“We started the program as a fundraiser,” said Gertman. It was not until later that the group’s focus turned to keeping materials out of the landfill, he explained.

Collection expanded after Gertman met Barney and Margaret Hill, two local residents and graduates from UC Davis. These three, along with a handful of other volunteers, formed the Recycling Committee.

The committee performed bi-monthly newspaper collections in a small, three wheeled Cushman scooter with a box on the back. Davis Waste Removal provided the scooter for the group. The vehicle sported 1 cubic yard of storage space. This required 6-7 trips from neighborhoods to the collection area during each pick-up period and frequent maintenance for the small scooter.

In 1972, the committee consolidated as a non-profit under the name the Recycling Awareness Committee of Davis. Under this new title, the group expanded to can and bottle collection. Twice a month the group would open up a facility near Aggie Villa on First Street where residents could drop off cans and bottles. From there the group transported the materials to facilities in Oakland and other cities.

The next step was approaching the Davis City Council with the idea of curbside collection. “We convinced the city council to ask Davis Waste Removal to take of an easy step – collection,” said Gertman, “the cost of the program was integrated into garbage collection rates.”

In 1974, the city council passed an ordinance for residents to separate newspapers from other waste products.

There were concerns however. “City council thought only students would recycle and that the program would fall apart in the summer,” said Gertman. When summer arrive, however, more recyclables were collected than earlier seasons in the year, to Gertman’s surprise.

Margaret Hill explained that although recycling was unprecedented in Davis, local residents took well to the new program. “It was new and there was lots of enthusiasm,” said Hill. One part of the Recycling Awareness Committee was educating residents. For example, the committee helped residents sort aluminum and bimetal cans.

The operation was not without a few challenges, however. Hill recalled a soda dispenser in Young Hall where they placed a can collection there for easy collection. “When students realized the aluminum cans had value,” said Hill, “there were never any in the collection bin.”

“At least they were recycling them,” she joked.

In 1976, Davis Waste Removal took charge of all recycling operations, “with the blessing of the Recycling Awareness Committee,” as written in an article by Gertman.

The Recycling Awareness Committee’s efforts continued throughout the 70s until the late 80s when Gertman moved to San Jose to start a recycling program using Davis as an example.

Hill’s story about the landfill and her family’s full commitment to the recycling effort.

Recycling Today

Since then, the recycling program has expanded its operations such as the addition of cardboard collection in 1988 and the transition to the split-container system that is in place today.

Davis Waste Removal now dedicates eight vehicles to its recycling operation — four for residential areas, two for apartments and businesses, and two for cardboard collection.

John Geisler, Manager of Davis Waste Removal, explained that the type of materials has also changed through the years. “The stream of material has changed over time,” explained Geisler, “the volume of paper is 70% less than 10 years ago.” Geisler attributes these changes to different methods of packaging.

Looking to the future, Davis Waste Removal is currently looking to add compost to its regiment of products collected. “There’s a company –wide effort to transition from loose green waste to containers,” said Geisler.

Davis’ recycling efforts are nationally renowned, receiving awards such as the California Resource Recovery Association Recycling Award in 2000 and the 2012 California Resource and Recovery Association Pavitra Crimmel Reuse Award.



Felicia Alvarez

Lewin letter

July 29, 2014 |

Oops I just edited this. i am a lousy proofreader early in the morning…

To: “Enterprise, newsroom”
Sent: Monday, July 28, 2014 8:53:35 AM
Subject: Putah Creek History – letter to Ed

I see you are going to relate the story of the demise and revival of the Putah Creek. Good! This story needs telling.
Allow me to recount the history in a nutshell:
People upstream dammed the river that ran past Davis, and despite promises they would maintain flows, cut it off almost completely. They (the Solano Irrigation District) argued that the water was critical for agricultural needs.But investigation found that most of the diverted water was being sent down South for huge profit. When the creek was in desperate straits they offered to allow Davis to buy water to restore the flow. This was, simply put, extortion. (I remember the dilemma of wanting to save the fish, but not wanting to give in to extortion.) The Putah Creek Council went to court and after many years eventually got the court to order the robbers upstream to maintain the flows in the creek. This was hailed as a victory, but nobody was punished, for what was, if not criminal, at least malfeasance. There were no fines, reparations, or incarcerations, after many years of extortion and lies and profiteering. There should at least have been beatings, or tar and feathers involved..
I remember seeing the sign on the bridge at Mace that said “No Fishing from the Bridge.” At the time I seriously considered adding a sign that would read “On account of no water, no fish! No foolin’!”
Have I got this right?
Gabe Lewin 1111 Drexel Drive Davis CA 95616 530 756 3896.



Letters to the Editor

Mondavi Center – dynamic pricing

July 29, 2014 |

For the past two years, the Mondavi Center has tried a ticket policy called “dynamic pricing,” under which ticket prices rise a bit for popular events that are selling briskly in advance, with selective discounts sometimes offered for other events that aren’t selling as well. And according to Jeremy Ganter, the Mondavi Center’s associate executive director, and Rob Tocalino, director of marketing, the policy has worked out well thusfar.

It’s a strategy that other outfits that sell tickets have employed for years. Club promoters, for instance, have long had a practice of charging (say) $20 for tickets sold in advance, and $25 at the door. And hotels have long charged variable room rates, with peak season rates during prime travel periods, and lower off-season rates at less busy times of the year.

Airline ticket prices are famously variable as well — most travelers learned long ago that you get a lower price (to say nothing of better seat selection) by booking your flight well in advance, and you pay a premium if you decide to fly on short notice.

With the advent of computer technology and online ticket sales, quite a few Major League Baseball teams adopted variable prices over the past decade — with the price of a ticket increasing (or decreasing) depending on factors including the quality of the opposing team (such as a game between two teams that are traditional rivals), the day of the week, the month of the year, the fame of the opposing pitchers, and calendar factors such as opening day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, and so on. National Football League teams are pursuing the strategy as well — the Green Bay Packers are currently thinking about trying variable pricing in 2015.

And several years ago, a number ofBroadway shows adopted dynamic pricing — increasing or decreasing prices for certain seats based on week-to-week or even day-to-day sales trends, in addition to high-demand weekends.

The Mondavi Center initially did a “test drive” of dynamic pricing during the 2011-12 season, with three or four “high demand” performances involved. That led to a decision to try dynamic pricing across the board during the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons.

It basically works this way: before the season begins, the Mondavi Center staff identifies  an attendance goal for each event. As ticket sales for a show reach 70 percent of that goal, the ticket price will increase by about ten percent. In the case of a famous performer, this might happen three months before the actual performance — for instance, last season’s visit by violinist Joshua Bell and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields… an event that the Mondavi Center had expected would sell out. In other cases, a less prominent performer may generate an unanticipated surge in ticket sales a week or two before the performance — like last season’s visit by the Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain. (“We had no idea beforehand how well that concert would sell,” Tocalino said.) Another unexpected hot ticket last season was jazz artist Jonathan Batiste, who had not performed at Mondavi before — demand for the four performances in the Studio Jazz series was so high that a fifth performance was added.

Other events that drew better than expected included talks by Peter Sagal (host of NPR’s program “Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me”) and  physicist/mathematician Brian Greene, and concerts by jazz pianist Amad Jamal, mandolin player Chris Thile, and the ensemble Mnozil Brass.

A number of the tickets that are involved with dynamic pricing are turnback tickets from subscribers. Tocalino said “there is a concentration of seats in the middle of Jackson Hall that are licensed seats — we get some of those back 45 days before the show” (when the license holder decides not to attend that particular performance). “We used to turn those seats back on the open market at the same price that the licensed seat holder would have paid,” Tocalino said. “They are some of the best seats in the house. And we feel there is a higher value for those seats. So when we get those seats back, we are often increasing the price a bit, depending on the demand for a particular show.”

And there seem to be enough customers willing to pay a bit of a premium to buy a good seat at the last minute.

Those who buy their Mondavi tickets early get a lower price. “If you want the best seats, and a big discount, that is through subcriptions,” said Ganter. Single ticket buyers likewise will likewise typically get the best price if they order their tickets promptly on August 15, when single ticket sales for the coming Mondavi season commence.  “It’s a reward for those who buy their tickets early,” Ganter said.

And there are are also a number of seats (including some on the sides and toward the back) that are not generally subject to dynamic pricing.

The Mondavi Center also routinely offers a a 50 percent discount to UC Davis students, and a 10 percent discount to UCD faculty and staff (as compared to general ticket prices).

Ganter stressed that “we are a nonprofit, so when we do eke a little more revenue out of a particular event, we invest that money back into the season. As a public institution, the ethics of this are very important.” The additional ticket income that accrues through dynamic pricing on high demand events goes to support the presentation of lesser known artists visiting the Mondavi Center for the first time. “That is always the goal, to keep the Mondavi Center as vibrant for our patrons as possible,” Ganter said. (This is different than a for-profit entity like a sports team or an airline or a hotel, where the additional revenue will likely go toward the company’s bottom line.)

Tocalino said “the money (from dynamic pricing) goes back into supporting new artists, younger artists. If it wasn’t for the other shows that are very successful — we wouldn’t be able to do them. This is funding those other opportunities.”

Tocalino added that “In the context of our budget, (dynamic pricing does not generate) gargantuan amounts of money — it’s one or two percent of our goal for the overall season. We’re not talking about a situation like ‘The Book of Mormon’ ” — the hugely popular Broadway show that has sold tickets to performances months in advance.

Sometime the Mondavi Center has offered bargain priced tickets to subscribers or UC Davis students. When the San Francisco Symphony appeared on Feb. 13, 2014 — and the concert was a “Just Added” event, rather than part of a subscription series — ticket sales were not initially brisk. So the Mondavi Center, with some support from a Mellon Foundation grant, sent an email blast offering flat-price $10 tickets to UC Davis students (a better deal than the original $25 student ticket price). The result: the concert drew a healthy audience, including several hundred students, some of whom took advantage of the concert as a “date opportunity” just before Valentine’s Day. “It was a nice confluence of price, timing, messaging… it all worked out really well,” said Tocalino.





Auto Draft

July 28, 2014 |



UCD professor turns down lectureship to protest against gender inequality

July 29, 2014 |



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo

Two thousand dollars and a public audience edged to the front of their seats to learn about microbes — that’s an opportunity a biologist rarely argues with (especially the latter).

When he opened his email last week, UC Davis professor Jonathan Eisen was delighted to receive an invite to a lecture series at a well-known university, which he is choosing to keep anonymous for now. But before accepting, Eisen, a microbiologist, researched both this lecture and a second endowed talk hosted by the same institution.

“Both of them were dreadful, in terms of the gender ratio,” Eisen said. “And that’s really weird in biology.”

So Eisen turned it down.

“In my field, there just isn’t that big of a difference in the percentage of males and females at various academic levels,” Eisen said. “And so when there’s a skewed ratio, there’s a sign that something is amiss.”

On his “Tree of Life Blog” and elsewhere, Eisen has championed diversity, highlighting the lack of diversity at scientific seminars and conferences, where speakers and organizers tend to be white males. Additionally, he sits on a committee for UC Davis’ ADVANCE program, which seeks to improve environment, hiring opportunities and education for women and minorities in science, engineering, math and technology.

“We need to think about whether or not we’re creating systems that are biased or supporting things that have some sort of discouragement,” Eisen said. “Every single one of these things is discouraging participation and advancement of certain groups.”

In 2012, he publicly shamed a quantitative biology conference for a male-to-female speaker ratio of 25:1. As part of his campaign, he submitted an abstract called “A quantitative analysis of gender bias in quantitative biology meetings.”

This year, the conference had a 7:6 invited male-to-female ratio, and next year, 12 male speakers and five female speakers have been confirmed.

Upon refusing the lectureship, a representative from the institution replied with what Eisen calls one of the most positive responses he has received to his criticism, asking for his suggestions about who to invite. He sent along four names: Ruth Ley at Cornell University, Katie Pollard of UC San Francisco, Jessica Green from the University of Oregon and Julie Segre at the National Health Genome Research Institute.

“I write my blog just to keep a record of things – I don’t imagine what the response is going to be,” Eisen said. “But the response to this was amazingly positive across the board.”

He has been contacted by old friends and colleagues and his post was shared hundreds of times across Twitter.

“It’s not like seminar series and conferences are the only important thing to deal with in gender equality in science,” Eisen said. “But they are so easy to fix.”



Elizabeth Case

Davis Film Festival to feature 18 selections

July 28, 2014 |

The eleventh annual Davis Film Festival will be held Sunday, Aug. 10 at the Veteran’s Memorial Theater on East Fourteenth Street.

Eighteen films will be showcased at this year’s event. For $8 moviegoers can watch either the first nine films — screening between 1:30 p.m. and 5:50 p.m. — or the last nine films, playing from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. An all-day pass is $14.

Tickets can be purchased at the door, online at or at Armadillo Music on F Street in downtown Davis.

Festival director Judith Plank says moviegoers can look forward to a diverse sampling of cinema.

“We’ll be showing everything from documentaries to animation,” Plank said. “There will be films produced from all around the world to films shot right here in our own backyard.”

Two of the films, “From Davis to Montgomery…and Back Again” and “Princess Daisy” both feature locals and were produced by Davisites.

Clocking in at just under 24 minutes, “From Davis to Montgomery…and Back Again,” will kick off the festival. The short centers on interviews with three Davisites who traveled across the country to march alongside Dr. Martin Luther King in 1965.

“We talk a lot about the city of Davis in this film,” director D.H. Martin said. “Sometimes we Davisites can be a little smug about our elevated consciousness, but even here there’s a history of racism, which is why I think it’s important for locals to see this film.”

Filmmakers Martin and Ben Breuning and subjects John Pamperin and Dick Holdstock are both expected to attend, as are “Princess Daisy” producers Ian Wallace and Jennifer Provenza — daughter of Yolo County Supervisor Jim Provenza.

One of only two full-length films shown at the festival, Provenza describes “Princess Daisy” as a semi-autobiographical, coming-of-age tale about about a woman who returns home to Davis after graduating from college. Shot in Davis, Provenza says locals will recognize much of the backdrop as well as the extras, which include Yolo County Supervisors Jim Provenza and Don Saylor.

“I think it will be really fun for local people to see all the places they go to every day on the screen,” Jennifer Provenza said. “There are a lot of local kids in the film, and I bet that if you’re from the area, you’ll recognize at least one person.”

“From Davis to Montgomery…and Back Again” and “Princess Daisy” bookend the first nine films shown before the dinner break.

“Fantasy Land,” a self-reflective short about the search for a lost childhood memory will be shown second. By Gabrielle Tillenburg, the film will be making its world premiere.

Vivian Kleiman’s “Families are Forever” will be screened next and focuses on conservative Mormon parents struggling to cope with their 13-year-old son’s homosexuality. At 3:10 p.m. romantic comedy “Evolution” will be presented; an 11 minute film by Berlin-based director Georg Jungermann.

“It All Started with Mom,” another romantic comedy, will follow “Evolution.” The twenty-four minute film includes footage from 1995 and centers on the romantic experiences of six women of the same family.

After a 15-minute intermission, “Unplugged,” an animated short by James Zachary is scheduled to run. “Meeting Gary,” a 13-minute film about a young boy’s dream of becoming a professional dancer will be shown before “Princess Daisy.”

Two environmental documentaries, “Threatened: The Controversial Struggle of the Southern Sea Otter” and “Postcard from the Sacramento Delta,” which features UC Davis environmental engineering professor Jay Lund. After the short films, evening festival ticket holders will be allowed in the theater.

The second half of the event begins with the debut of “Needs Talking,” a short film about a woman at a crossroads.

Fans of the animated series “Courage the Cowardly Dog,” which was broadcast on Cartoon Network from 1999-2002, are in for a treat. “The Fog of Courage,” a short based on the television series, will also be making its world premiere in Davis. In this chapter of the once-popular cartoon, Courage must save his owner from a vengeful supernatural Fog.

Twenty-two minute experimental film “Falling Asleep” is billed next. “Falling Asleep” puts the audience in the shoes of a man who has either hurled himself off a building or cannot wake from a terrible nightmare.

“The Martini Effect” and “Skype War” both deal with romantic entanglements, while “Midlife” and “First Session” delve into its subjects’ psychological traumas.

After an intermission, “Risky Business” is scheduled to close the festival. A full-length documentary directed by David Mech, “Risky Business” is the festival’s only R-rated selection and gives an in-depth look into the lives of adult film workers.

More information on the festival is available by visiting the website at



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Join us at the Alzheimer’s Cafe August 20th, Opening Celebration

July 28, 2014 |

I hope you can post a story that will inspire folks to drive to Woodland -the event is Free and open to anyone that is interested in attending as a guest or volunteer. We offer friendship, music, art and entertainment and games. This program is sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Aid Society of Northern California and the Californian of Woodland. /Users/maryannmcdermottfrantz/Downloads/PastedGraphic-1-3.pdf/Users/maryannmcdermottfrantz/Downloads/Coming_SoonWoodlandcafe[1]-4.docx

Pls post the flyer and if you have space info about the cafe. Thank you, Maryann



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Dolores Fairchild

July 28, 2014 |

Dolores Fairchild
Died peacefully at her residence on July 12, 2014 She was 78.Born July 5, 1936 Kansas City, MO relocated to Southern California with parents Truman and Mina Fairchild (Both decreased). Attended Our Lady of Loreto High School Los Angeles CA 1955 obtained her Medical Assistant Credentials 1972. She was a well-known resident to the Davis community since December 1979. She obtained her AAS Computer Business Administration 1998 and BS Criminal justice Administration 2001
She is survived by her 4 children Jeffery Lawrence and wife Leona Blumberg of Lawrenceville, GA. Nancy Lee Blumberg of Sacramento, CA. Susan Jean Blumberg of Palmer, MA. Patricia Fannymae Blumberg Fairchild of Davis CA. Her Grand-daughter Cheyenne Rose Blumberg with 3 Great-grandchildren Christopher, Nicholas and Hannah of Port Angeles WA.



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UC Davis alumnus hopes to bring amateur radio to Nepal

July 29, 2014 |

In 2003, UC Davis graduate Suresh Ojha quit a well-paying job as a communications engineer to spend a year in his native Nepal. Working pro-bono to develop a curriculum at Tribhuvan National University in radio engineering, Ojha lived in the middle of a cramped, timeworn neighborhood in Kathmandu where generations of his family had been raised.

Upon his return to the United States — after installing a new teaching laboratory and assuring the success of his radio frequency curriculum — even back in his own bed, Ojha still had trouble falling asleep.

It has been 80 years since the last major earthquake struck Kathmandu and killed more than 8,000 Nepalis. Experts estimate an 8.0 magnitude earthquake should hit the region, which is nestled between the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates, every 75 years. In a city of over 2 million residents, a similar earthquake today would claim close to 40,000 casualties, according to estimates by Nepal’s National Society of Earthquake Technology.

Though researchers can’t guarantee another impending disaster, Ojha believes the next big earthquake is long overdue, and it’s why he started the Radio Mala project last October.

“We’re trying to save lives by establishing this system of amateur radio systems beforehand,” Ojha said. “There wasn’t adequate information infrastructure in Haiti at the time of that devastating earthquake, cellular phone networks were overwhelmed. If we can develop this network now, maybe we can save lives that would otherwise be lost.”

With academics at Tribhuvan University, engineer friends he met in his master’s program at UCD and experts from across Silicon Valley, Ojha made plans to create a network of amateur radio stations that would stretch across most of Kathmandu.

Ojha says Radio Mala can be deployed in three steps. The team has already installed a long-range radio station on the top of Tribhuvan University. Engineers are in the middle of phase two — the purchase and establishment of a radio repeater. The team has already bought most of the equipment for phase two and are in the process of shipping the instruments to Kathmandu. The last step calls for the installation of a second repeater, that would connect with the first.

Now, the team is busy raising funds for a second repeater. To date, volunteers have done everything from selling t-shirts to hosting telethons, but have still only raised a quarter of what they need to finish their project. The volunteers still hope to complete Radio Mala by the end of 2014.

“We’re not trying to do anything new here,” Ojha said. “We’re simply replicating what’s already been carried out in Silicon Valley. We have the plan and the tools and the expertise, we just need greater support and more donations.”

Ojha, who serves as the chairman of disaster preparedness for the Computer Association of Nepal in the United States, will be in Nepal in the coming weeks to participate in a United State Pacific Command exercise. Representatives from 21 nations will gather in Kathmandu to decide how best to deploy their communication technologies to respond to a natural disaster.

While in Kathmandu, Ojha says he plans to meet with Nepali officials to spread the word about Radio Mala.

For more information about Radio Mala, readers can visit or email



Name Droppers MASTER FILE

December 20, 2013 |

Honey bee scientist Elina Lastro Niño of Pennsylvania State University in University Park, known for her expertise on honeybee queen biology, chemical ecology and genomics, is the newly hired Extension apiculturist at the UC Davis.

She will join the UCD department of entomology and nematology faculty in September, replacing Eric Mussen, who retired June 30 after 38 years in the position.

Niño will conduct problem-solving research focused on honeybees and those crops in need of pollination services. In addition, with the establishment of the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven, she will provide outreach to backyard beekeepers that represent a growing enterprise in California.

Her research involves the reproductive processes involved in queen bee mating, including the impacts of oviduct manipulation, insemination volume and insemination substances. The induced changes include measurable behavioral, physiological and molecular alterations that occur, including differences in behavioral interactions between queens and worker bees.

Niño said considering her interests in honeybee queen health she anticipates fruitful collaborations with the California queen breeders.


Brandeis University has announced that Gaelyn Walche represented Davis High School and the state of California at the Global Youth Summit on the Future of Medicine.

Walche is one of only 240 delegates selected for the program from across the United States. Delegates gained behind-the-scenes insight into the world of health care through experiential learning, guest lectures and networking opportunities with leaders and innovators in the global medical community.

Delegates heard from prominent Brandeis faculty members, including fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and medical researchers and innovators.

The conference keynotes were delivered by Dr. George Q. Daley, director of the Stem Cell Transplantation Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, and Dr. Michael J. Zinner, surgeon-in-chief at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital.


Debra Bakerjian of UC Davis, an assistant adjunct professor and senior director for nurse practitioner and physician assistant clinical education and practice at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, was selected as one of 168 nurse leaders nationwide for fellowship in The American Academy of Nursing.

The academy consists of more than 2,200 nurse leaders in education, management, practice, policy and research. Fellows include hospital and government administrators, college deans and renowned scientific researchers. Bakerjian is the first Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing faculty member to be selected for fellowship as a member of its faculty.

Bakerjian joined the School of Nursing in 2009 as a postdoctoral scholar and in fall 2010 was appointed an assistant adjunct professor. Along with School of Medicine faculty, she led the transition of the UC Davis nurse practitioner and physician assistant programs to the School of Nursing. In 2012, she was selected as a fellow in the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.

Selection criteria include evidence of significant contributions to nursing and health care and sponsorship by two current Academy fellows. Applicants are reviewed by a panel comprising elected and appointed fellows, and selection is based, in part, on the extent the nominee’s nursing career has influenced policies and the health and well-being of all.


Derek Nelson of Davis received a bachelor’s degree from North Central College in Naperville, Ill., at its 149th commencement on June 14.


William DuPratt of Davis, student at the prestigious Pratt Institute in New York City, was among more than 1,000 students who made the president’s list in the spring semester.


Christine Trites of Davis received a doctor of law from the School of Law of Emory University in Atlanta at its 169th commencement ceremony on May 12.


The Chinese Academy of Sciences has named professor Zhe Chen as an overseas member of the academy’s Scientific Review Board. Chen is a professor of human development and family studies in the department of human ecology.

The board provides evaluations and recommendations concerning the academy’s strategic plans, research priorities and policies, academic programs, and award programs.


The Graduate School of Management’s MBA student recruitment brochures are winners — again — in the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, or CASE, awards program.

The GSM’s 2013 recruiting brochures, prepared by the school’s marketing and communications unit, earned a silver award in district competition. This year, the unit took a big step up, earning bronze in the CASE Circle of Excellence Awards Program for entries from around the world.

The GSM unit prepared three 2014 brochures: one for the full-time MBA program, and one each for the Sacramento and Bay Area MBA programs.

Recognition for the latest award goes to Marianne Skoczek, associate director of marketing and communications, who served as the project manager and lead editor, and Tim Akin, the executive director, who participated in the writing and editing, as well as the early design conceptualization.

They worked closely with James Stevens, who, as senior assistant dean of student affairs in the GSM, has responsibility for recruitment and admissions.

Besides printing the brochures, the GSM also published them on the Issuu digital platform as Web-based, mobile-optimized and interactive documents, which feature active links to the GSM’s website and social media sharing features.


Timothy King Hobert of Davis, an engineering student at Washington University in St. Louis, was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.


Tyler Berg of Winters, an exercise science major at California Lutheran University, was one of 24 students awarded a Swenson Science Summer Research Fellowship. Berg will receive $3,700 for his project comparing the effect of different landing directions on leg joint angles, angular velocities, joint forces and torques.


Jennifer Horn of Davis, a computer and information science student at the University of Oregon, was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.


Angela Maya Rothman of Davis, a history student at the University of Oregon, was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.


Ariella Wolfe of Davis, a theater student at the University of Oregon, was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.


Dominic Carrillo of Woodland, a political science student at the University of Oregon, was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.


Liesl Knoesen of Davis, was honored with the 2014 DAISY award, given each year to a Shriners Hospital nurse.

Knoesen is a 2011 University of California San Francisco School of Nursing graduate. She has worked as an operating room nurse at Shriners Hospital since her graduation.

She is described by patient care services director Pam Cornwell as, “skillful, thoughtful and compassionate.”


Derek Nelson of Davis, a student at North Central College in Naperville, Ill., was named to the dean’s list in the spring semester.

— Do you know of someone who has won an award or accomplished something noteworthy? Email it to or send it to Name Droppers, The Davis Enterprise, P.O. Box 1470, Davis, CA 95617



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Calvin D. Rourke

July 29, 2014 |

April 28, 1925 – July 17, 2014

Cmdr. Calvin D. Rourke USNR (Ret.), a lifetime resident of Davis, passed away peacefully on July 17, 2014.

Calvin was a Naval pilot and WWII veteran. He is survived by his daughters, Teresa Franchi and Sandra McRae, son David Rourke, eight grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, Aug. 2, at 9:30 a.m. at Lutheran Church of the Incarnation, 1701 Russell Blvd., Davis. Interment will be at Davis Cemetery, 820 Pole Line Road, Davis, followed by a light luncheon at Lutheran Church of the Incarnation in the Fellowship Hall.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that donations be made to Wounded Warrior Project at P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675 or

Those who wish to sign a guestbook online may do so at



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Freewheeler Bicycle Center

July 28, 2014 |



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Arboretum 8/15

June 14, 2014 |

Fridays; August 1, 15 & 29; September 12 & 26

Folk Music Jam Session
12–1 p.m., Wyatt Deck, Arboretum Drive, UC Davis campus
Folk musicians are invited to play together informally during this acoustic jam session at the Wyatt Deck, located on Arboretum Drive (formerly Old Davis Road) next to the redwood grove in the UC Davis Arboretum. Pull out your fiddles, guitars, mandolins, penny whistles, pipes, flutes, squeezeboxes (you name it) and join your fellow musicians for a little bluegrass, old-time, blues, Celtic, klezmer, and world music over the lunch hour. All skill levels welcome. Listeners welcome! The event is free; parking is available for $9 in Visitor Lot 5, at Old Davis Road and Arboretum Drive. Click here for a map of the location. For more information, please call (530) 752-4880 or visit
Past Folk Music Jam Sessions

You are welcome to download any of these photos for promotional use. For more download assistance, information, or captions, please contact Katie Hetrick, Director of Marketing and Communications, UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, at or (530) 754-4134.

Saturday, August 16
What’s Up with Plants Down Under?
10 a.m., Wyatt Deck, UC Davis Arboretum (just off Arboretum Drive), UC Davis campus
What a difference a hemisphere makes! Explore the unusual and interesting plants in the Australian and New Zealand collection at the east end of the Arboretum. Many of these plants grow well in our climate. The event is free; free parking is available in nearby Visitor Parking Lot 5. Click here for a map of the location. For more information and directions, please call (530) 752-4880 or visit
Australian and New Zealand Collections

You are welcome to download any of these photos for promotional use. For more download assistance, information, or captions, please contact Katie Hetrick, Director of Marketing and Communications, UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, at or (530) 754-4134.
Sunday, September 14
Butterfly Ecology Talk & Tour
11 a.m., Trellis at the California Native Plant GATEway Garden (newly-constructed garden at the Arboretum’s east end, just behind the Davis Commons Shopping Center)
Join naturalist Steve Daubert and explore the ecology and evolution of butterflies, as we tour the new garden. Learn how the Arboretum functions as a butterfly preserve. All ages are welcome. The event is free; walking or biking to the event is encouraged. Please note that the Davis Commons parking lot is for shopping center customers only. Other parking is available in nearby public parking lots. Click here for a map of the location. For more information and directions, please call (530) 752-4880 or visit
2013 Butterfly Ecology Talk and Tour

You are welcome to download any of these photos for promotional use. For more download assistance, information, or captions, please contact Katie Hetrick, Director of Marketing and Communications, UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, at or (530) 754-4134.



Enterprise staff

Take steps to ensure a healthy, happy pregnancy

July 29, 2014 |

If you’re a woman of childbearing age, you should be thinking about your health.

Medical research shows that a mother’s health before and during the nine months of pregnancy not only affects a baby’s development in the womb, but also influences the child’s health through adulthood.

First 5 Yolo offers information about how to take care of your health if you are thinking about becoming pregnant and once you are pregnant. Executive Director Julie Gallelo noted, “First 5 Yolo funds several programs to ensure babies are born healthy and ready to succeed once they enter the world and it starts with a healthy pregnancy.”

Tips include:

* Prenatal care: Take a prenatal vitamin every day. They contain folic acid and iron, vitamin A, vitamin D, zinc and calcium.
Folic acid can help reduce the chances of neural tube defects by up to 70 percent. Start taking a prenatal vitamin or 400 micrograms of folic acid at least one month before you become pregnant.
Foods like beans and legumes, citrus fruits and juices, whole grains, dark green leafy vegetables, poultry, pork, fish and shellfish all contain healthy amounts of folate.

* Eat right, not twice: Research suggests that women should increase their caloric intake only by 10 percent. Usually, pregnant women only need an additional 300 calories a day — about half a cup of nuts or two cups of milk.
Eat lots of vegetables and fruit; protein from lean meats, eggs and nuts; and low-fat dairy products like cheese, yogurt and milk, and steer clear of calories that come from added sugars and solid fats.
You should get 1,200 milligrams of calcium a day to prevent bone loss.
Eat iron-rich foods such as red meat, salmon, eggs, tofu, dark poultry, enriched grains, beans and peas and dark green leafy vegetables.
Omega-3 fatty acids boost your baby’s brain development before birth.
Choose fish that are high in omega-3s but low in mercury, which can harm a fetus’ nervous system. Avoid swordfish, shark, king mackerel, tilefish and, some experts now say, tuna. Top picks include wild Alaskan salmon, Atlantic mackerel, herring, sardines and anchovies.

* Keep fit: Most experts recommend gaining about 25 to 35 pounds during pregnancy.
Regular exercise helps prevent excess weight gain, improve sleep, boost your mood, improve circulation and lessen recovery time.
Low-impact, moderate-intensity activities such as walking and swimming are great.
Talk to your doctor before beginning or continuing any exercise regimen.
Drink enough water (about 10 cups per day) to prevent dehydration that can lead to headaches, nausea, cramps, edema and can trigger preterm labor.

* Know the “don’ts”: Say no to alcohol. Even as little as one drink a week has been linked to behavioral problems in children.
Quit smoking. Smoking is the most preventable cause of poor pregnancy outcomes in the nation. Smoking can cause miscarriages, bleeding, premature babies and other complications during pregnancy. Plus, infants are three times more likely to die of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome when their mothers are smokers.
First 5 California sponsors the California Smokers’ Helpline (1-800-NO-BUTTS) to provide parents who smoke or use tobacco with free resources to quit. Help is available in English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean and Vietnamese.
Limit caffeine intake to about a 12-ounce cup of coffee per day.

For more information on early learning and development, visit or



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elias 8/15 Prop 49

July 29, 2014 |



Whichever way Californians vote this fall on Proposition 49, which aims to convince Congress to pass a constitutional amendment overturning the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision on political fundraising, they will send a dangerous message to the rest of America.

Vote yes, in favor of nixing the court’s decision to remove restrictions on political spending by corporations and labor unions, and voters will be saying they want this done at all costs. With the Republican-dominated House of Representatives highly unlikely to pass anything that might restrict corporate political donations, a yes vote could conceivably lead to the first full-fledged constitutional convention America has seen since the 1780s.

Vote no, thus ratifying the Supreme Court’s opening the corporate political money spigot, and Californians will be saying the decision in Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission is OK with even one of America’s most liberal states.

That gives voters a Hobson’s choice: Whatever they do, there’s potential for significant harm to this country’s political fabric.

There can be no doubt of the danger in a California vote that might be strongly enough in favor of repeal to inspire other states to act if Congress does not. Although some dispute this, the odds are a constitutional convention would not be limited just to the issue that inspired it. It would not take many states to trigger such a convention, either.

For 34 state legislatures, aiming to create a federal balanced budget amendment, have voted since the 1970s to call a convention. At least four later rescinded their votes, but there’s nothing in the current Constitution allowing them to do that. The 34 – Michigan in 2012 being the most recent – make up the two-thirds needed to call a convention, even if most of their votes have been hanging around unnoticed for almost 40 years.

If just a few more states now voted to call a convention, aiming to repeal Citizens United, doubts about the rescinded votes could quickly become irrelevant and the House would have to call a convention.

At any such meeting, as at the first one which lasted four months in 1787, all subjects would likely be fair game. Would a convention sustain the Bill of Rights with its freedoms of speech, press, religion and association that have long been the essence of America, or would delegates truncate them?

Would Second Amendment gun rights be strengthened or weakened? Would delegates eliminate the Supreme Court-affirmed right to privacy that has led to abortion rights but is not spelled out explicitly anywhere in the Constitution – or would they beef it up? Would they eliminate the Supreme Court itself? What about separation of church and state?

Most legal experts agree an unlimited number of questions could be opened up, one reason there has been no such convention in more than 225 years. It could be a classic Pandora’s Box, many unknowns waiting to leap out.

But then there’s the message that would be sent by a no vote on Proposition 49: Even California’s mostly liberal voters don’t mind unlimited corporate and union bucks being dumped into politics.

Surely Gov. Jerry Brown, as veteran and savvy a chief executive as California has ever had, knew all this when he allowed the measure to go to the ballot without his signature, declining to veto it. But in his message permitting the vote, he did not speak to the dangers, only the foolishness of asking voters to decide something that “has no legal effect whatsoever.”

That reality might just give voters an out. The fact this proposition would not bind anyone to do anything is the basis of an attempt by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assn. to toss it off the ballot. Using similar reasoning, the state Supreme Court in 1984 dumped another advisory measure from the ballot.

But the dangers in either a yes or no vote are potentially very real, if the state’s current high court doesn’t take similar action, and quickly.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



Snyder-Oerman engagement

July 26, 2014 |

Joseph Hibbert Snyder of Davis and Stephanie Oerman of Hollister are engaged to be married on Aug. 2, 2014.

The bride-to-be is the daughter of James Oerman and Delores Azevedo. She graduated from Sonoma State with a degree in English and works as a realtor for Coldwell Banker.

The groom-to-be is a third generation Davisite. He is the son of Thomas and Molly Snyder. His grandparents, Jack and Carol Hibbert, also, of Davis, founded Hibbert Lumber Company. Snyder graduated from San Francisco State with a degree in industrial design and works for PG&E.

The wedding will take place at Taber Ranch in Capay Valley.

Snyder’s cousin, Conor Hadley of Davis, will serve as the best man. Valerie Cirinelli, a friend of the bride, will be the matron of honor.



elias 8/12: drought knowledge

July 29, 2014 |



We know a fair amount about the drought that has now afflicted California for about three years: It has been the driest period since record-keeping began in the 19th Century. If their wells are deep enough, farmers can still pretty much pump all the ground water they like, while homeowners can be fined up to $500 for watering down a walkway. Water use actually rose after Gov. Jerry Brown asked for a voluntary 20 percent cutback.

A large seawater desalinating plant will open by 2016 in the north San Diego County city of Carlsbad. Ground has subsided in many parts of the Central Valley as aquifers have been pumped faster than they could be replenished. Weather forecasters predict next winter may be as dry as the last one.

But there remains much that we don’t know, as detailed in the latest issue of Stanford Magazine article by writer Kate Galbraith. It turns out that what we don’t know may be more fundamental that what we do know. For example, because more than 255,000 homes and businesses in 42 communities lack water meters and because of the almost unlimited, unmetered ground water pumping, no one knows just how much water California uses or needs.

In Sacramento, scene of the meeting where state regulators this summer decreed there be less watering of lawns all over California, about half the homes and businesses lack water meters. They can use all they like without any financial or legal consequence unless they have the temerity to hose down a walkway or sidewalk.

For another example, we have no idea how much water lies in most California underground lakes, also known as aquifers. We do know that golf courses in the Coachella Valley portion of Riverside County, including Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage and the aptly-named Indian Wells, remain quite green even as the state Capitol lawn and many others go brown. Drought or not, a vast underground lake beneath most of that area has so far kept water shortages there at bay. Plus, much of the water sprayed onto that valley’s myriad greens and fairways eventually filters back down to the aquifer.

But it’s the extent of aquifers in the Central Valley that’s most important to know. As farmers expend tens of thousands of dollars deepening wells to reach the new, lower levels of the aquifers, no one has the foggiest notion how long this can go on.

Meanwhile, state law effectively permits farmers, water districts and anyone else with a well to pump all the water they want, the presumption being that water beneath a property belongs to the property owner. Never mind that ground water has no idea who owns it or where property lines may lie. Which can mean that if one well owner pumps excessively, others in the area get left high and dry.

Meters, Stanford Magazine says, could fix some of that. “If everyone had a meter on their well and you knew how much everyone was using and you knew what the aquifer levels are, you could sort of calculate everybody’s contribution to aquifer depletion,” Leon Szeptycki, executive director of Stanford University’s Water in the West program told the magazine. “But if you don’t know any of those things, they just become things to fight about.”

So ground water regulation bills now wending their way through the Legislature could be vital to planning the state’s water future. So could expanded aerial surveys of the Central Valley’s land formations and levels, which can indicate how much of a region’s ground water has been lost over time.

Every other Western state now regulates ground water use. But California operates blindly, and could pay a heavy price if it doesn’t begin sizing up its real situation, since ground water is the usual backup when surface water supplies from aqueducts and reservoirs run low.

Yes, conservation is important, but even more vital is information. Right now, California simply doesn’t have enough upon which to base vital decisions that become more urgent with every passing month of drought.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



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Tom Elias: Red-light camera fate now uncertain in state



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo


July 12, 2014 |

There are few worse feelings for a driver than receiving a letter purporting to show that person in the act of running a red light.

But not many legal items are less enforceable or reliable, despite what the California Supreme Court said in an early summer ruling that held that red-light camera photos and videos have “a presumption of authenticity.”

There’s a reason traffic cops routinely demand that drivers sign the bottom of every ticket they write: That signature constitutes a promise either to pay a fine or appear in court on a specified date. Drivers make no such promise on red-light tickets, which normally carry fines of about $480.

That was one reason the city of Los Angeles abandoned red-light cameras in 2012. The decision came about a year after that city’s police chief, Charlie Beck, candidly admitted that no actions were being taken against drivers who simply ignored red-light camera violation notices. Because they’re not routinely sent as certified or registered mail (too costly), prosecutors cannot prove drivers are lying if they say they never got the mailed tickets.

This, in effect, creates two classes of citizens, in apparent violation of the equal protection clause of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment: drivers who dutifully pay fines on demand and scofflaws who don’t. There could hardly be more unequal treatment.

There’s also the issue of red-light camera reliability. The nub of the case against cited drivers is usually a videotape that drivers can often see via an Internet link provided in the mailed violation notice.

Since the vast bulk of red-light camera tickets involve drivers making rolling stops rather than full stops before right turns, the accuracy of videos is critical. A still photo may place a driver in the middle of a turn during a red light, but doesn’t establish that he or she didn’t stop before proceeding with the turn.

If the video camera doesn’t run precisely at life-speed, but is a little faster, a vehicle can appear to be rolling through the stop, when, in fact, it made a full stop. In several cases where police have been cross-examined about how often their video cameras are calibrated, they testified they didn’t know, that it was up to the camera operator — usually Redflex Traffic Systems or American Traffic Solutions, both based in Arizona. But those firms are never available for cross-examination in court and the Supreme Court said they don’t have to be.

So while drivers contesting red-light camera tickets can usually question a cop, they can’t cross-examine the ultimate witness against them, an egregious violation of a basic constitutional right, no matter what the state justices may say.

But legal reasons are not the main cause for removal of red-light cameras in Poway, Oakland and most other cities that have gotten rid of them: finances are. Because more than half the take from each $480 fine goes to the state or the operating companies, cities often don’t make much profit from the cameras, while annoying thousands of their citizens and visitors.

There’s disagreement in Oakland, for one example, over how much the city made last year from the 11 red-light cameras it then had operating: The city says it netted just $280,000, while Redflex said the city share came to about $1.1 million. Oakland police are now auditing paid fines to see which figure is closest to correct.

In Poway, near San Diego, cameras at three intersections netted between $100,000 and $218,000 per year. Apparently, those smallish receipts were not enough for either city to put up with complaints about cameras violating privacy and the exorbitantly high fines for rolling stops before right turns.

All of which means red-light cameras are at a different kind of crossroad: The state’s highest court says drivers don’t have the right to cross-examine camera operations because of the presumption of accuracy in their findings, while some of the state’s largest cities have shut their cameras down.

The upshot is that unfair as the cameras may be if they’re not properly calibrated, their fate in many places will hang not on traffic safety, but on the city budget dollars they produce, regardless of anyone’s constitutional rights.

— Reach syndicated columnist Tom Elias at



Alice Waters on food run 8/3

July 23, 2014 |

National Farmers Market Week, as proclaimed by the USDA, is Aug. 3-9. Run box with market info

Alice Waters Says the Future of Food Is Sustainable and Locally Sourced
The Chef and Author Sees a Big Role for Schools in Promoting Healthy Eating and Subsidizing Real Food
By Alice Waters
Over the past half-century, the fast-food industry, aided by government subsidies, has come to dominate the food marketplace. That development has given us an obesity epidemic and, with the growth of so-called factory farms, has degraded the environment.
More recently, in a reaction against fast food and Big Ag, the sustainable-food movement, with a focus on local food networks and healthy eating, has gained a foothold in restaurants and farms across the country. What began as an underground movement has now gone mainstream.
Looking forward, I believe that ever-growing numbers of Americans—led by passionate chefs, farmers and activists—will choose the latter of these two paths: a sustainable food future. Let me describe how I believe, ideally, that future will look.
Farmers Markets
The number of farmers’ markets and young people taking up farming will multiply geometrically. As such, we will see at least one farmers’ market in every town in the country and, in turn, the revitalization of many areas.
At the same time, small mom-and-pop restaurants will enjoy a resurgence. These owners—with little enthusiasm for franchises—will be interested primarily in quality of life and in building a community around their businesses. These restaurants will build relationships directly with farms and will want to increase the quality and variety of their produce. As a result, I expect to see a greater variety of fruits and vegetables becoming available in the market.
Growing demand will push farmers to be innovative, as will climate change. That will mean more greenhouses in the colder parts of the country, growing food in urban areas and choosing crops that can withstand extreme weather.

This movement poses a threat to fast-food businesses and industrial food companies, both of which I predict will continue to shape-shift and co-opt their values for profit. As long as their products continue to be supported by government subsidies, they will be successful. The reality is that the sustainable-food movement’s reach will grow only to a point and ultimately will be limited to those with access, means and education—unless legislators dramatically change food and agriculture policy.
I think that those in government will come back to their senses in the coming years and begin to subsidize farms instead of factories. As access to real food becomes increasingly divided between the haves and the have-nots, food security will become even more of a social-justice issue.
Back to school

I am confident that we will see a growing consensus about the most effective way to transform food in America: building a real, sustainable and free school-lunch program. Decision makers will agree that the most sensible place to reach every child and to have the most lasting impact is with a program of “edible education.” Having worked in that field for more than 20 years via the Edible Schoolyard Project, I know what’s possible: Providing children with delicious meals made from organic ingredients transforms their attitudes about, and behavior toward, food for life.
Beyond the individual nutrition outcome of each child, an institutional food program with principled buying criteria (food that is locally sourced and organic) becomes a subsidy system for real food—a subsidy system that sees schools become the engine for sustainability.
I know that those on both sides of the political aisle finally realize that in food we find the root problem of many of our nation’s ills. I am not sure yet that they realize that food has the solution.

— This piece was published originally in The Wall Street Journal on July 7.



Special to The Enterprise

shooting vampires

July 29, 2014 |

Dear Editor:

My God! And we wonder why kids shoot other kids at schools throughout the U.S. Is This what we’ve come to? That it’s an entertaining family outing to ride the train and “shoot zombies?” Oh sure, I know it’s all “make-believe.” And you don’t believe that “make-believe” has any relationship to acting out? I am shocked at the practice, shocked at Sierra Railroad President for thinking this is just a fun good idea, and shocked at the Enterprise for running the article on the front page of the Sunday paper as if hey, no problem.

Elli Norris



Letters to the Editor

Zombie article

July 29, 2014 |

I was appalled to read “All aboard The Zombie Train” on the front page of the July 27 Enterprise. Here is free advertising that promotes violence as entertainment for adults and children, including those younger than 12, using the same laser guns the Army uses for simulation.
This is just one way we are choosing as a society to live in an increasingly violent world.

Jean Shepard




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Evan Ream

Evan Ream graduated with a B.A. in journalism from Southern Oregon in Ashland, Ore. He loves soccer more than any person rationally should. "Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure them it is much more serious than that." - Bill Shankly

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Anne Ternus-Bellamy

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Revised: UC Davis Penalizes Drivers for Driving Less

July 27, 2014 |

Let’s Gas Up for TAPS

The UC Davis Transportation and Parking Services (TAPS) recently encouraged everyone to consider alternative transportation. People should walk and bike. People should ride share. As a result people’s health will improve, traffic congestion will decrease, fossil fuel use will decline, air quality will improve, and global warming slows slightly. UC Davis could potentially set aside less land for parking lots. What a win, win, win….scenario. Indeed, the campus community drove fewer cars.

But fewer drivers mean lower parking revenues. Revenues plummeted. So, TAPS has hatched a plan to cover the short fall by increasing fees and fines. Chancellor Katehi approved TAPS to raise the daily visitor permit rate by $1 ($8 to $9) effective August 1, 2014

The plan includes increasing the citation fines for parking violations by $5 with no pretension to promote law and order.

So, I worry that TAPS worries too much about its economic plight and has lost sight of the larger economy and the espoused Principles of Community of UC Davis as a “foremost institution of learning and teaching, committed to serving the needs of society.” To help TAPS avoid Levitt and Dubners’ freaky trap of better educated people being better extremists, TAPS should just reverse its policy and encourage everyone to gas-up, fatten-up, and pollute-up. Let’s have a festive gas-up day once a month! That way, everyone could celebrate TAPS’ message that the increased fines also help support a state mandated surcharge to fund courthouse construction throughout the state.

Hear, hear to the good people of UC Davis. You’ve done well. But you should have known better than to trust TAPS to play anything but taps.

Thomas Jue




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Special to The Enterprise

Reynolds letter

July 26, 2014 |


I have noticed that there have been several letters to the editor on the Israel matter recently. I have created my response (copied below), and hope that your policy about these type of letters has at least temporarily changed so that my letter can be printed. Thank you for considering this.

Judy Reynolds


The latest bombing by Israel of a United Nations-run elementary school on Thursday that resulted in more killings of Palestinian civilians adds to the lopsided consequences of the present war between Hamas and Israel.

Yes, Hamas should be condemned for firing rockets into Israel whether or not they take a large number of Israeli lives. On the other hand, punishing thousands of civilian Palestinians for Hamas’ transgression is not a viable solution. Killing civilians who are seeking refuge at U.N. schools cannot continue or be justified by “battle ground” claims; there are hundreds of thousands of Palestinians seeking refuge in such complexes. If fighting moves to those areas, will more schools and civilians be destroyed with this justification?

As the civilian death toll in Gaza mounts, I hope that supporters of Israel in this conflict will come to the conclusion that massive civilian Palestinian deaths do not promote peace in either the short or long term, and that they ask the Israeli government to cease their conduct. Although it is true that the 1977 Protocol 1 of the Geneva Convention prohibiting the indiscriminate attack of civilians in a war zone has not been signed by Israel, I do not believe that battle ground claims, sweeping hidden weapon claims or having dinner with a suspected Hamas operative will be judged by world opinion to justify the large number of civilian casualties that are taking place today. I also sincerely hope that the government of Israel will take note and reconsider their actions.

Judy Reynolds



Letters to the Editor

Logos Books 8/7

July 26, 2014 |

Italian lovers are invited to join Marinka Swift for “Una Chiacchierata”, an hour of Italian conversation meeting the first Thursday of every month, 7:30-8:30 pm at Logos Books, 513 Second Street. Next meeting is Thursday, August 7th.

La Table Française meets the second Wednesday of every month, 7:30 -8:30 pm at Logos Books, 513 Second Street. Next meeting is Wednesday, August 13th. Check for topic info.

El Círculo Español meets the third Monday of every month, 7:30-8:30 pm at Logos Books, 513 Second Street. Next meeting is Monday, August 18th. Check for topic info.



Enterprise staff

Lewin letter

July 26, 2014 |

(Thank you for publishing my letter about Peter Kent the homeless derelict to whom I sometimes donate money. I have had several calls from people verifying that he is who I think he is. He should be cared for in a benevolent institution. Thanks Ronald Reagan!)
Gabe Lewin 1111 Drexel Drive Davis CA 95616. 530 756 3896
Again today I read about DNA evidence exonerating a man convicted of a serious crime, only after years of efforts by the “innocence project” or efforts by the prisoner.
Surely it behooves us, no matter what the expense, to examine every case where there is DNA evidence that could exonerate convicted prisoners, without making them wait for many years in incarceration. Why do they have to beg and plead for this? And when we find that they indeed are not the perpetrators, release them immediately, not after months or years of processing paper work!
And there are many cases where it is evident that the prosecutors and/or police were guilty of malfeasance to convict the accused. Such as hiding exonerating evidence. And when the accused is released he/she gets no apology and there are no repercussions on these people! To advance their own careers they have knowingly wrongly convicted and incarcerated an innocent person! That is a crime!
The case of the “Wilding” kids in New York who all served time before they found the individual who actually did the crime comes to mind.
I know that most prosecutors are honest, but where it can be shown that they had a reckless disregard for justice they should be prosecuted themselves! I do not think it has ever happened!



Letters to the Editor

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Helmus + Baker Optometry

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Special to The Enterprise

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Elizabeth Case

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Elizabeth Case

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Sweet and Shavery

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Special to The Enterprise

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Elizabeth Case

Fleet Feet Sports: ‘From the couch to the finish line’

July 18, 2014 |

Fleet Feet Sports of Davis has been open for barely a minute on a Monday morning, and the small store is already bustling.

A customer browses running socks amid racks of workout wear. Another admires the shelves of shoes that cover the walls almost to the ceiling. And two customers sit on benches at the back of the store, ready for one of the store’s best-known services: one-on-one shoe fitting.

Chris and J.D. Denton, owners of Fleet Feet Sports’ Davis franchise, run their athletic goods store with the community in mind.

“We like to have a relationship with our customers,” J.D. said. “There is a business side to (Fleet Feet Sports) but what we do is way beyond just selling stuff.”

The training groups sponsored by Fleet Feet Sports are a part of that mission, according to J.D. The store sponsors coached groups for everyone from advanced runners training for half-marathons to beginners thinking of trying their first 5-kilometer race.

“We take (new runners) from the couch to the finish line,” J.D. said.

The store also sponsors a number of local races and school running groups.

“When we took over the store, we wanted to get other people excited about running and fitness,” J.D. said. “We wanted to create community.”

Bob Lorber of Davis and his family have been shopping at Fleet Feet Sports since before the Dentons bought it. When Lorber walks into the store, the employees greet him by name. “Do you like our new layout?” one asks.

Lorber admires the rack of mens’ running shoes, pointing out shoes he’s tried before and asking after new models. For Lorber, the choice to shop local is clear.

“I like supporting the stores in our town,” he said. ”I think to keep our economy and our community vital we need to support local business.”

J.D. agrees. “We have always been priveleged to be a part of this tight little comunity of businesses downtown,” he said. “We’ve always believed in being very local in everything we do.”

He remembers his early jobs in retail, which he said sometimes involved no more than “showing up and opening the door.” Now, with Fleet Feet Sports, he’s proud to build a connection to the stores’ customers.

For the customers, who come to the counter with questions about everything from socks to sunscreen, there’s a tangible benefit to this store-customer rapport. Lorber remembers when a Fleet Feet Sports employee “recommended a particular physical therapist who helped me a lot,” he said.

Like many other Davis businesses, Fleet Feet Sports is a part of the Shop Davis promotional campaign, which encourages shoppers to  frequent local businesses. Shop Davis is supported by the Davis Chamber of Commerce and the Yolo County Visitors Bureau.

“We appreciate that there is a very strong shop local movement all over the country,” J.D. said. “People are starting to realize that if you don’t shop at local businesses, they go away.”



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College Admissions

July 25, 2014 |

Thought you might be interested in publishing this for Davis residents, I recently retired from Davis and have worked at Stanford and UC Santa Cruz. Thank you for your consideration of this article.

It’s College Admissions Season…….
By: H. C. Cuevas
August is upon us and around the corner college admissions season awaits high school seniors. An annual ritual with high school students excited about the prospect of moving on to college, new found independence and a host of new ventures, yet, it is also a period that students and parents alike often find stressful and confusing. On or about October, students will be able to begin filing their on-line college admission applications. There is additional pressure to prepare and submit ones admissions application as a complete portfolio for students applying Early Action or Early Decision, these deadlines tend to be as early as November 1st.
The one thing that has been constant and driving up angst, among parents and students alike, is that college admissions continues to become more competitive at public and private colleges as witnessed by last year’s statistics on freshmen class admissions. More students than ever are applying for a shrinking number of slots, this alone, should be enough to add stress to this year’s applicants. Not only are the most highly selective colleges admitting fewer students (Stanford lead the pack by admitting only 5% with Harvard admitting 5.9%, Yale 6.2% and Princeton 7.2%, N.Y. Times, April 9, 2014) in relation to the number of applicants, but selective liberal arts as well as public universities and colleges are also following this trend. The University of California System’s flagship schools, regarded as the public ivies, (UC Berkeley admitted 17 %, and UCLA 18% of their 74,000 and 86,000 applicants respectively, UC Fall 2014 Admissions Rates, Table 2) dropped below 20% for the first time. Another indicator of increased competition for college admission is that colleges once thought to be safeties by many high school students have become reach schools for students with seemingly outstanding academic portfolios.
It should also be noted that public universities (UC Fall 2014 Admissions Rates, Table 2) have joined the ranks of private colleges by actively recruiting and admitting a larger number of both international and out of state students for the purposes of revenue enhancement or what many plainly call cash cows. Thus, increasing the competition among instate applicants. With private colleges and universities, one must also be aware of the phenomenon of legacies, development donors and VIPs. When colleges give extra weight to an applicant who has a legacy, such as a sibling, parent, or grandparent who is alum of that institution, then of course that increases the competition among non-legacy applicants who are not entitled to this type of consideration. Private colleges and universities also give special consideration to athletes, underrepresented students, applicants whose parent(s) are potential significantly wealthy donors as well as children of VIP’s. In addition, Early Admit applicants can make up to a third of overall admissions for these schools (Stanford accepted 748 early admits out of it 2138 admissions offers for 2104). In brief, regular applicants are competing among themselves for the smaller remainder of slots.
As colleges continue to become more selective, parents should not think that stellar GPA’s and SAT scores alone would get their student admitted into the college of their choice. Mere statistics, no longer guarantee admission into college. Harvard and other colleges, both private and public, turn down applicants with perfect (1600) SAT scores and 4.0 plus GPA’s and yet, still admit some students with slightly lower scores and grades.
Why? Today, most private and now many public colleges and universities conduct a comprehensive review of an applicant’s background and are looking an entire admissions portfolio of a prospective student’s background. This is not to say that academic performance doesn’t play a critical role in the admission’s process. On the contrary, most college admission officers advise high school students to challenge themselves academically, pursue a balanced but the most rigorous curriculum offered and strive for an academic record that reflects their true potential. Students admitted into highly competitive colleges have generally taken a large number of AP courses and to gain a more competitive edge, will have taken courses at nearby colleges.
Colleges today, look well beyond competitive academic backgrounds to build a well-rounded freshmen class. It is common to find two to three admission readers reviewing each college application. Each reader assesses how an applicant will contribute not only academically, but what values, unique talents and personal attributes will bring to his or her respective campus. In essence, Admissions Officers are looking at a prospective student’s entire admissions portfolio. Each student should know that their admissions portfolio encompasses areas that are evaluated in respect to the candidate’s values, maturity and a variety of achievements. Co-curricular as well as extra curricular accomplishments and experiences can be rated on a variety of scales along with personal attributes such as leadership, initiative, creativity, resilience, teamwork, and independence. An accomplished athlete, budding scientist, notable humanitarian, or accomplished artist maybe rated on their noted level (local, state, national, international) of experience and accomplishment. Co-curricular activities are those that blend academic interests and passions with initiatives that lead to experiences beyond the classroom. Extra-curricular experiences do as well but are generally defined by interest or passions outside of academic pursuits. Today, both types of experiences are desirable to have in one’s application portfolio, especially for highly selective and selective colleges and universities.
It is through well-written personal essays, answers to specific questions, and personal interviews where colleges and universities get an insight to someone’s traits and what matters to them most and why. An essay should provide a personal perspective that cannot be found in transcripts, test scores or list of activities. It should be an engaging in-depth personal story about something that might incorporate interests, abilities, contributions, achievements as well as a reflection of ones values. Thus, it is the dreaded college application essay that can be critical to capturing in a thousand words or sometimes less the critical essence of one’s admissions portfolio. A well-written essay, no matter what the topic or theme, is reflective of an individual’s core. And this is what the college admissions reader is hoping to find, an essay with a compelling and authentic story that no matter how late in the day or night, the applicant comes to life, as does admissions officer’s energy with the joy of reviewing one more application of the hundreds she or he has read that day
With increased competition, varying requirements and timelines, it is no wonder that the process of selecting, applying and gaining admission to college can be stressful, anxiety producing and confusing to both high school students and parents. Fortunately there are a number of resources to help students and families approach the college admission’s process in a clear, organized, and strategic manner. There are high school counselors who can help but whose large student loads may limit the time devoted to each student. However, there are numerous web sites such as as well as private college admissions counselors offering assistance.
It is also important to note that college admissions counseling, particularly for selective colleges, should start much earlier that a student’s senior year. Starting as early as ninth grade provides a student and their family the opportunity to carefully plan and build a comprehensive and competitive admissions portfolio. An admissions portfolio that includes a rigorous academic curriculum, good test scores, compelling personal essay(s), excellent recommendation letters and in-depth co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, projects or internships that are unique to a student’s interests, values, attributes and innate talents.
You will get the best help from individuals who take the time to understand the personal, family and educational needs of a student and who have carefully assessed the student’s academic background, abilities, interests and goals. Good college counseling assist students with finalizing a list of appropriate colleges, standardized testing, college visits, applications, personal essays, supporting documents, financial aid, college interviews/resumes and final selection.

H. C. Cuevas is Founder of College Choice and a Private College Admission and Career Consultant. His has over 20 years experience in higher education with the University of California and Stanford University. He has also served as an instructor with UC Berkeley’s College Admission and Career Planning Certificate Program and as a local and national speaker on College Recruitment and Admissions. You can reach him at or at 916 502-4057



Special to The Enterprise

For eye health page

August 01, 2014 |

By Dr. Schrader

Survey Reveals Parents Drastically Underestimate the Time Kids Spend on Electronic Devices

Home and classroom digital device use is up among school-age children; Dr. Wayne Schrader recommends yearly back-to-school eye exams

According to the American Optometric Association (AOA), parents severely underestimate the time their children spend on digital devices. An AOA survey reports that 83 percent of children between the ages of 10 and 17 estimate they use an electronic device for three or more hours each day. However, a separate AOA survey of parents revealed that only 40 percent of parents believe their children use an electronic device for that same amount of time. Eye doctors are concerned that this significant disparity may indicate that parents are more likely to overlook warning signs and symptoms associated with vision problems due to technology use, such as digital eye strain.

Eighty percent of children surveyed report experiencing burning, itchy or tired eyes after using electronic devices for long periods of time. These are all symptoms of digital eye strain, a temporary vision condition caused by prolonged use of technology. Additional symptoms may include headaches, fatigue, loss of focus, blurred vision, double vision or head and neck pain.

“When parents think about their kids’ mobile consumption habits, they often don’t think about how much time they spend on devices in the classroom,” said Dr. Wayne Schrader. “Each year when school starts we see an increase in kids complaining of symptoms synonymous with eye strain. Essentially, they’re going from being home over the summer with a minimal amount of time spent using their devices back to a classroom full of technology, and their time on devices often doubles, leading to a strain on the eyes.”

Optometrists are also growing increasingly concerned about the kinds of light everyday electronic devices give off – high-energy, short-wavelength blue and violet light – and how those rays might affect and even age the eyes. Today’s smartphones, tablets, LED monitors and even flat screen TVs all give off light in this range, as do cool-light compact fluorescent bulbs. Early research shows that overexposure to blue light could contribute to eye strain and discomfort and may lead to serious conditions such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which can cause blindness.

When it comes to protecting eyes and vision from digital eye strain, taking frequent visual breaks is important. Children should make sure they practice the 20-20-20 rule: when using technology or doing near work, take a 20-second break, every 20 minutes and view something 20 feet away. According to the survey, nearly one-third (32 percent) of children go a full hour using technology before they take a visual break instead of every 20 minutes as recommended.

Additionally, children who normally do not require the use of eyeglasses may benefit from glasses prescribed specifically for intermediate distance for computer use. And children who already wear glasses may find their current prescription does not provide optimal vision for viewing a computer screen. An eye doctor can provide recommendations for each individual patient.

The AOA suggests the following guidelines to help prevent or reduce eye and vision problems associated with digital eye strain:

Check the height and position of the device. Computer screens should be four to five inches below eye level and 20 to 28 inches away from the eyes. Digital devices should be held a safe distance away from eyes and slightly below eye level.

Check for glare on the screen. Windows or other light sources should not be directly visible when sitting in front of a computer monitor. If this happens, turn the desk or computer to prevent glare on the screen. Also consider adjusting the brightness of the screen on your digital device or changing its background color.

Reduce the amount of lighting in the room to match the computer screen. A lower-wattage light can be substituted for a bright overhead light or a dimmer switch may be installed to give flexible control of room lighting.

Adjust font size. Increase the size of text on the screen of the device to make it easier on your eyes when reading.

Keep blinking. To minimize the chances of developing dry eye when using a computer or digital device, make an effort to blink frequently. Blinking keeps the front surface of the eye moist.

The AOA recommends every child have an eye exam by an optometrist soon after 6 months of age and before age 3. Children now have the benefit of yearly comprehensive eye exams thanks to the Pediatric Essential Health Benefit in the Affordable Care Act, through age 18.

“Parents should know that vision screenings miss too many children who should be referred to an optometrist for an eye examination to correct vision,” added Dr. Schrader. “Eye exams performed by an eye doctor are the only way to diagnose eye and vision diseases and disorders in children. Undiagnosed vision problems can impair learning and can cause vision loss and other issues that significantly impact a child’s quality of life.”

To find an optometrist in your area, or for additional information on children’s vision and the importance of back-to-school eye exams, please visit and

About the American Eye-Q® survey:
The ninth annual American Eye-Q® survey was created and commissioned in conjunction with Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates (PSB). From March 20-25, 2014, PSB conducted 1,000 online interviews among Americans 18 years and older who embodied a nationally representative sample of the U.S. general population. (Margin of error is plus or minus 3.10 percentage points at a 95% confidence level)

About the Children’s Omnibus survey:
The children’s Omnibus survey was created and commissioned in conjunction with Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates (PSB). From March 24-31, 2014, PSB conducted 200 online interviews from March 24-31, 2014 with children ages 10 to 17. (Margin of error is plus or minus 6.93 percentage points at a 95% confidence level)

About the American Optometric Association (AOA):
The American Optometric Association, a federation of state, student and armed forces optometric associations, was founded in 1898. Today, the AOA is proud to represent the profession of optometry, America’s family eye doctors, who take a leading role in an individual’s overall eye and vision care, health and well-being. Doctors of optometry (ODs) are the independent primary health care professionals for the eye and have extensive, ongoing training to examine, diagnose, treat and manage disorders, diseases and injuries that affect the eye and visual system, providing two-thirds of primary eye care in the U.S. For information on a variety of eye health and vision topics, and to find an optometrist near you, visit



Special to The Enterprise

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Target event 8/5

July 24, 2014 |

Davis Target cordially invites you to attend our 31st Annual National Night Out! Join in our neighborhood celebration of public safety and crime prevention with Davis PD, Woodland CHP, Davis Fire Department, Yolo County Sheriff’s Office, American Medical Response and the UC Davis Police Department. Come meet the Davis Target team and enjoy lots of games, treats and fun activities for kids!

When: Tuesday August 5, 2014 from 4:30-7:30 PM

Where: Target in Davis – 4601 2nd Street, Davis, CA 95618

Katie Young ¤ Executive Team Leader –



Enterprise staff

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Local Hasbara Watch

July 24, 2014 |

Local Hasbara Watch

The recent letters to the Enterprise defending Israel reflect the doublespeak emanating from Benjamin Netanyahu’s Davis apologists: denial that Israel has destroyed Palestinian homes in the West Bank, while in reality over 27,000 home demolitions are documented; describing as an “unprecedented humanitarian gesture” the grossly inhumane attacks by Israel on the Gazans, including attacks upon three hospitals, which thus far have resulted in the killing of over 680 Palestinians—mostly civilians—while two Israeli civilians and fewer than 30 Israeli soldiers have died in the same period, including those from the Gaza-launched rockets.

If Israel really wants to stop rocket attacks from Gaza, then as Israeli journalist Gideon Levy suggested to Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman on July 22, it must end the siege and accept a just peace. “Sure Israel wants peace, Israel just doesn’t want a just peace,” Levy said. Since 2006 Israel has wrapped Gaza in an impenetrable blanket, trapping people inside its boundaries while severely restricting the flow of goods, food and medical supplies across its borders, limiting fishing boat access to the Mediterranean—essentially placing a choke hold around the throats of the people living in one of the most densely populated areas of the world.

“The real goal of Operation Protective Edge against Gaza is ‘to kill Arabs’,” said Levy in the July 13 edition of Ha’aretz, a conflict he describes as “the elephant against the fly.” The Gazans recognize this, which is why Hamas has refused the recent cease-fire offer that would only perpetuate the intolerable status quo.

Said Levy, “It is all about justice. You look backward and you ask yourself in which stage, in which moment, was Israel willing to give up the occupation? … It was never there. It was all about gaining time and maintaining the status quo — namely the West Bank occupied, Gaza under siege, peaceful life in Israel. … If you want the ultimate proof for it, it’s the settlements. Israel never stopped building settlements, and says to the Palestinians and the world, [we] have no intention to give up this piece of land.”

Mikos Fabersunne




Letters to the Editor

Devastation in Gaza

July 24, 2014 |

In his op-ed of July 20, George Rooks avoids the most important piece of the puzzle of conflict in Palestine/Israel: the brutal military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza by the Israeli Defense Force (IDF)—along with the right under international law for Palestinians to resist that occupation. Without understanding this, none of it makes sense.

In the West Bank, Palestinians face checkpoints, refusal of building permits, home demolition, land seizure, killing by IDF snipers, live fire at nonviolent demonstrations, administrative detention without trial that can be extended indefinitely, arrest and detention of children, torture in military prisons, continuous construction of settlements, destruction of olive trees and crops and more. Israelis control all their borders, water, trade, who enters and leaves.

In Gaza the situation is even more dire. Israel has Gazans under seige within the confines of a small strip of land. It controls everything coming in and limits or disallows everything from food, to repair parts for bombed infrastructure to building materials, to spices. Almost no export is allowed. With all restrictions unemployment is rampant.

The response by the Gazan people should not be surprising. “If you strangle a people, deny them supply, for years, extreme reaction is inevitable. The one begets the other.” Tweet by Jon Snow, British TV announcer.

Targeting of civilians by anyone is wrong. Since the Israeli offensive started on July 7, over 600 Gazans have been killed and three medical facilities shelled and bombed. This offensive, as well as that in 2008-2009, which killed over 1,400 Gazans, go far beyond attempts to strike the militant forces of Hamas, and are illegal collective punishment with the hope that the resulting misery will demoralize them enough to flee the country.

The plan to force out the Palestinians began long before Israel proclaimed itself a state in 1948. David Ben-Gurion, who became the first prime minister of Israel wrote in 1937: “With compulsory transfer [forced expulsion of Palestinians] we have a vast area [for settlement] …. I support compulsory transfer. I don’t see anything immoral in it.” (quoted in Benny Morris, Righteous Victims, p. 144)

Marsha Carlton




Letters to the Editor

Resta letter

July 24, 2014 |

In response to Tuesday July 22 letter from Julia Lutch: “Shame on the Palestinians.”
Julia Lutch started her tirade against the Palestinians with the statement: “Indiscriminate rocket firing by armed groups from Gaza has targeted Israeli population centers to terrorize and kill innocent civilians.” I understand that the “kill” count of Israeli civilians is 1, while the “kill” count of Palestinian civilians is nearing 400. How can you justify killing innocent women and children while blatantly saying it’s Hamas’ fault for hiding the targets Israel wants to hit in schools. hospitals, mosques, and such, and so that absolves any Israeli guilt for killing women and children. And of course before the Israeli kill them, the Israeli supposedly warn them, like if an assassin came in your house with machine gun aimed at your head, warned you and then shot you –he of course would not be guilty of a crime, right? And isn’t it interesting that the news spoke of wounded Palestinian civilians in hospitals being killed by Israeli attacks. Were the “notices” painted on the bombs and shells? I am a combat veteran of WWII and saw the results of the Holocaust at Gardalegen, Germany, and I have since always championed the Israeli. But I can’t stomach killing women and children with any excuse, certainly not as self-serving as those put forth by the current Israeli terrorists. Francis Resta



Letters to the Editor

Auto Draft

July 22, 2014 |



Water rates

July 23, 2014 |

In response to the recent announcement by UCD to participate in the Davis Woodland Water Supply Project, the City of Davis intends to retain the rate consultant, Bartle Wells Associates, to analyze the potential impact of the University’s decision on water rates. UCD’s choice to use 1.8 million gallons per day (MGD) in surface water supply from the Project will result in a reduction in the amount of water that the City receives from the project, reducing the City’s participation by about $11 million.

Bartle Wells will analyze the impact of the reduction in overall project costs on proposed water bills for residential, commercial and irrigation uses. The reduction in total project costs has the potential to influence financing opportunities for the City and impact cash flow requirements. The City will also have to recognize the impact on operations costs and opportunities from soon-to-be-executed operations agreements with the University. In addition the City will ultimately have to determine how the 1.8MGD, no longer available to City residents, will be replaced through the development of alternative sources or reduced through demand side management.

The Bartle Wells study will be presented to the Davis City Council during the public hearing on water rates currently scheduled for September 16, 2014.

Kelly Stachowicz
Deputy City Manager
City of Davis
23 Russell Blvd
Davis, CA 95616
(530) 757-5602



Auto Draft

July 22, 2014 |



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Auto Draft

July 21, 2014 |



Tuleyome Tales: Hikers, be safe during fire season



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo


Barnett trail1W

Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett works on trails around Lake Berryessa and emphasizes wildfire safety for all of his crews. Charlotte Orr/Courtesy photo

July 22, 2014 |

Tuleyome Tales – Hikers: Be Safe During Fire Season!


Tuleyome Tales

Hikers: Be Safe During Fire Season!

by Mary K. Hanson

With the fire season already well underway, and the recent incidences of the Monticello Fire near Lake Berryessa and the Butts Fire in Napa County, wildfire safety for hikers in the region is a topic that bears repeating.

Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett builds and maintain hiking trails on a regular basis very near the area affected by the Butts Fire. “I like to talk to my crews on the trail, especially the trails I build because of the remoteness, about fire dangers,” Barnett says. He encourages wildfire safety and awareness.

Taking reasonable precautions during fire season before going out on a hike is the first best defense against getting trapped in a remote area with a wildfire on the way. Before heading out, check with the local fire services for notices about possible burns or risk concerns in the area. Take the time to not only plot the course of your hike, but also to plot escape routes.

Barnett says, “I am pretty good about checking for fire [information] online. I have a campfire permit and follow the guidelines. I keep an eye out for smoke, and stay aware of phone reception areas for emergency calls.”

Watching for signs of fire is another good defense against getting trapped by a wildfire. The acrid scent of smoke or seeing smoke are obvious indicators that a fire is nearby. If you see ash or sparks in the air, it means the fire is probably less than a mile away from you and you should take immediately measures to safely leave the area. Even small fires can loom large in just short amount of time, so don’t underestimate the danger.

“Getting away from the burn is more important than getting to your car at the trailhead,” Barnett says.

When trying to escape a fire, FACE the wind and move DOWNHILL whenever possible. Remember, heat rises, so fire will run up the side of a hill or embankment much quicker than it will move down it. Move along areas that won’t provide the fire with any additional tinder, such as wide dirt trails or fire breaks, paved roads, or rocky and gravelly areas; and avoid canyons and ravines where wind will provide fuel and movement for the flames. Barnett warns, “Wildfires will catch a draw very similar to the draw in a fireplace or wood-burning stove along ravines.”

If you do find yourself trapped by the fire, and you can’t get out into a deep water source (such as a stream or lake) do NOT douse your clothes with water. If the fire reaches you, it can cause the water on your clothes to super-heat and turn to scalding steam.

Never try to outrun an oncoming wildfire; they can move as quickly as 14 miles per hour.

If the fire is going to overtake you, find a relatively clear space on the ground, pull up any weeds or brush you can, and create a shallow depression to lie in. The bigger the space you can clear for yourself, the better. Remove any synthetic clothing you’re wearing, as synthetics will burn quickly and melt onto your skin. Take off your backpack, but keep it nearby in case you need to use it as a heat shield. Then lay face-down in the depression with your feet in the direction of the fire.

As horrifying as being trapped by a wildfire may seem, keep in mind that if one does overtake you, it may pass over you in less than a minute or so. The heat will make it difficult to breathe, but try to keep yourself low to the ground and as calm as you can.

To avoid situations like this, however, it’s always best to arm yourself with as much information as you can before going out on the trail. Stay alert and stay safe.

Tuleyome Tales is a monthly publication of Tuleyome, a conservation organization based in Woodland, CA. Mary K. Hanson is an amateur naturalist and photographer. Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett is the Trail Development Coordinator for Tuleyome Napa in Napa County. Tuleyome also thanks Susan Kocher, Natural Resources Advisor for the UC Cooperative Extension program for her assistance with this article. For more information about Tuleyome visit


Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett works on trails around Lake Berryessa and emphasis wildfire safety for all of his crews. Photo by Charlotte Orr, used with permission.

Trail builder and hiker Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett. Photo by Charlotte Orr, used with permission.

Hikers along the Berryessa Peak Trail keep in mind that wildfire season is upon us and following hiking fire-safety measures saves lives. Photo by Charlotte Orr, used with permission.

Mary Hanson
Executive Assistant
Membership, Volunteer and Lecture Series Coordinator

Tuleyome – Deep Home Place
607 North Street, Woodland, CA 95695
Phone: 530-350-2599
On the web:
Remember to “Like” us on Facebook!
My normal office hours are 8:00 am to 2:30 pm, Monday through Friday
You Can Donate to Tuleyome By Clicking Here!

(Let me know if you would like to stop receiving emails from this address.)



Special to The Enterprise

Future subscriber: Sonya Theresa Arnold

July 18, 2014 |

Will and Nichole Arnold of Davis are pleased to announce the birth of their daughter, Sonya Theresa Arnold, born June 11, 2014, at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento. She weighed 7 pounds, 10 ounces.

Sonya is named after her late maternal grandmother, Sonya Theresa Garrett. Her maternal grandfather is Larry Mosley of Sacramento, her paternal grandmother is Marti Arnold of Davis, and her paternal grandfather is Doug Arnold of Davis. Sonya is welcomed home by big brother Mauricio Mosley, age 6.



Enterprise staff

elias 8/8 fall election certainties

July 22, 2014 |



Make no mistake, the fall election season began on the evening of June 3, just as soon as the primary election polls closed. But no one has spent much on the election since then, nor has the vast majority of voters focused on any issues to be decided in November.

This will change in a month or so, when the campaign gets underway semi-officially during the Labor Day holiday weekend.

When it does, three things will be certain:

— Many more voters will turn out this fall than cast primary ballots.

— Even though the fall campaign features just seven propositions, including four in the initiative and referendum category of popularly-placed proposals, two or three of them will be election centerpieces and spending records will be set.

— Democrats will be favored in every statewide contest, even for controller, where the leading primary vote-getter was Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin. Things are likely to turn out just as expected, too.

These three items may not seem tightly linked, but they definitely are.

The presence of the initiatives and referendum on the ballot will attract far more voters than the record-low turnout of almost two months ago. That’s precisely what Democrats in the Legislature planned back in 2011, voting overwhelmingly to place all propositions qualified via voter signatures onto the November ballot, keeping June initiative-free. They wanted more voters at the polls in November, when they mostly compete against Republicans, rather than have the big numbers come out for the intra-party fratricide of the top-two primary.

The likely result of those machinations and the higher turnout they will produce is that Democrats stand to take all statewide offices.

Republicans feared just this when initiatives and referenda were removed from the June ballot. At the time, state Sen. Bob Dutton of Rancho Cucamonga, then the Republican leader in the Senate, called the measure “game-playing.”

But Gov. Jerry Brown, somehow keeping a straight face, said it was really about getting more voters involved in key decisions. He noted that in 2010, the last general election not including a presidential race, 10.3 million Californians voted in November, compared with just 5.7 million in that year’s primary.

With Democrats holding a large plurality among registered voters, the more people participate in the fall, the better Democrats figure to do. That’s especially important for the only two Democrats who had close races last June. Yes, Democratic Board of Equalization member Betty Yee squeaked into November by just 400 votes over former Democratic Assembly Speaker John Perez and will have to make up ground on Swearengin, who finished a few percentage points ahead of both Democrats.

A bigger turnout is also important for Democratic state Sen. Alex Padilla of Los Angeles, who barely won a primary plurality over Republican academic Pete Peterson.

The one ballot measure figuring to draw the most voter attention – and special interest money – will be Proposition 45, an attempt to place health insurance rates under the same kind of regulation by the state insurance commissioner as auto and property insurance now get. This one is strongly backed by the Consumer Watchdog advocacy group, whose founder, Harvey Rosenfield, wrote the 1988 Proposition 108 that created the current insurance regulations.

Expect that one to draw more than $40 million, the bulk from insurance companies fighting it.

Also of high interest will be Proposition 48, a referendum placed on the ballot by a combination of anti-gambling groups and existing Indian casinos. This one would overturn two gaming compacts setting up the state’s first off-reservation casinos.

Expect heavy interest, too, in the Proposition 43 water bond, if Brown and legislators can agree on its precise content. Figuring to be little understood by many voters is Proposition 44, which would make permanent a rainy-day fund to cover potential state budget shortfalls.

Two other initiatives will also draw heavy investment, as trial lawyers seek to increase current maximum medical practice judgments and liberal groups try to reduce some crimes from felonies to misdemeanors.

No one yet knows how all these issues will come out, but for sure they will interest far more voters than the boring June primary, exactly as the Democrats planned.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, the Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



elias 8/5 no embargo — child immigrant crisis

July 22, 2014 |




For some people familiar with the history of the runup to World War II, there’s a sense of déjà vu in today’s humanitarian crisis along the Mexican border these days, as resistance rises against the tens of thousands of unaccompanied children attempting to enter and stay in the United States.

Eyewitness reports in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune and other major newspapers indicate that about half the children coming without parents are actual refugees fleeing murderous Central American drug gangs who would kill them without qualm or consequence if they refuse to become addicted or go to work for the gangs as drug runners, prostitutes or worse. Even if they’re only six or eight years old.

But many Americans are skeptical of those reports, doubting so many could be induced to become refugees so suddenly without a motive that is mostly economic.

Back in the early to mid-1930s, there were also doubts and skepticism when Alan Cranston (later a longtime U.S. senator from California) described in detail German persecution of Jews via the old International News Service wire. Similar reports in the New York Times were greeted with the sort of skepticism that’s rampant today.

When the German-Amerikan (cq) Line steamer St. Louis attempted to land 937 Jewish refugees from Europe in Cuba in 1939, Havana residents protested en masse on the docks of their city, forcing their right-wing government to turn away the ship, which was then denied even the privilege of docking in nearby Miami. Those aboard were returned to Europe, to face the Holocaust.

Conservatives in America led the resistance to taking in those Jews, claiming many were Communists. Similarly, some of today’s protestors claim without any evidence that the youthful wave of immigrants includes terrorist “sleepers.” There is no more proof of today’s canards than there was 75 years ago.

Seeming to echo the reception the Jews got in Havana, tea party members and other screaming protesters waved and wore American flags while carrying banners inscribed “Return to Sender” as they blocked buses carrying illegal immigrant children to a temporary shelter in the Riverside County city of Murietta.

The parallels between the St. Louis saga, now widely recognized as one of the most shameful episodes in Western Hemisphere history, and today’s humanitarian crisis, of course, are not precise.

For one thing, all passengers but one aboard the St. Louis were genuine, unquestionable refugees from persecution and near-certain death. It’s probable that only about half the 50,000 to 60,000 undocumented children attempting to enter the U.S. in the last year fit that category.

Most of the others want to join parents already here illegally or simply gain an economic foothold in America.

So it’s important to determine who fits into which category. Federal law provides that every person claiming refugee status – which the United Nations is now pressuring American authorities to grant many of the recently arrived kids – must get a judicial hearing to determine the validity of each claim. A 2008 law demands those hearings be held quicker for children than others claiming asylum.

But no one anticipated a wave like today’s, so there are nowhere near enough immigration judges to hear all the cases.

That’s one thing President Obama wants to fix via a $3.7 billion emergency funding request to deal with the crisis. But partisanship in Congress makes it all but certain the funding will not come, leaving the children’s fate up in the air as there will likely be no new or even temporary cadre of immigration judges. Some kids will find foster homes, some will no doubt be deported, but the fate of the vast majority is in doubt.

The ultimate solution, of course, will have to be improvements in the children’s home countries, but since America is not about to police hundreds of Central American towns, this country can’t cure the situation on its own, but must deal with symptoms.

There is no doubt, though, that it’s incumbent on us to avoid another shameful humanitarian disaster like the St. Louis episode, which is far from forgotten even after three quarters of a century.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough: The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



Halprin Jackson/Alpers

July 22, 2014 |

A sparkling day at Pajaro Dunes was the setting for the wedding of Julia Halprin Jackson, formerly of Davis, and Ryan Alpers of San Jose, on the summer solstice, June 21, 2014.

“We’re writing a story together,” the bride and groom told family and friends as they stood under a chuppah built by the bride’s father of walnut branches and decorated with flowers at the Pajaro Dunes lagoon. The couple walked down the aisle to Mendelssohn’s wedding march performed and recorded by the bride’s grandmother, Saralee Halprin of Santa Monica.

Julia, the daughter of Alan Jackson and Lyra Halprin of Davis, is a 2002 graduate of Davis Senior High School, a 2006 graduate of UC Santa Barbara and a 2012 graduate of UC Davis’ creative writing master’s program. As a junior in college she studied in Granada, Spain, and after graduation returned to Spain to work in an elementary school bilingual education program.

She works as a writer and editor for UCSC Silicon Valley Extension. Julia is one of the three co-founders of Play On Words, a collaborative literary performance series in San Jose that pairs performers with up-and-coming and established writers. Play On Words will make its LitQuake debut in San Francisco on Oct. 18.

Ryan, the son of Rick and Shirlee Alpers of San Jose, is a graduate of Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose. He received a bachelor’s degree in literature at UC Santa Barbara and his teaching credential from San Jose State University. He teaches English and journalism at Lincoln High School in San Jose, where he coaches the badminton team. Ryan also has written and performed at Play on Words, and has built contraptions for the Maker Faire and the Burning Man festival.

The couple met at the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara, and became reacquainted in a writing group in San Francisco. Together they have camped in 25 states and traveled through 20 national parks. They also enjoy running together. Julia has completed four half-marathons with her mother-in-law. Julia and Ryan wrote special 100-word story postcards in honor of their wedding.

Bridal attendants included man of honor Joshua Halprin Jackson of Honolulu, Hawaii, the bride’s brother; maids of honor Laurel Brittan of Inverness and Tiffany Edwards of Berkeley, and Dumindra Gurusinghe of Spokane. Julia’s sister-in-law Shelby Ho of Honolulu read a statement dedicated to Julia’s family, while Stephanie Thayer of Davis read a poem by Naomi Shihab Nye.

Richie Alpers of El Dorado Hills served as his brother’s best man. The groomsmen were David Tannaci of San Francisco, Cleveland Motley IV of San Francisco, and Andrew Christian of San Jose. Ryan’s sister-in-law Ashley Alpers read Ryan’s statement to his family.

Bayard Nielsen, a friend of the couple, was the officiant. Ryan’s cousin Emily Abernathy served as the couple’s day-of coordinator. Family friend Judi Bloom designed and crafted centerpieces and venue decorations. The mother of the bride, with help from family and friends, used local flowers to create bouquets, corsages and boutonnieres.

Guests enjoyed fresh food from Monterey Bay Catering, cookies from the Pacific Cookie Company and Davis’ Farmer’s Kitchen, and berry pies from Gizdich Farm. Pies were the dessert of choice in honor of Julia’s late grandmother Alice Jackson, and grandfather Fred Jackson, who passed away the day before the wedding.

Julia and Ryan live in San Jose, where together they work, run and write.



Special to The Enterprise

Mello house

July 19, 2014 |

“Nugget Dream House” Once Was a Pig Farm
No Longer Pigsty: Renovated Farmhouse Is the “New California Vernacular”
(other good titles abound  )

by Christina Cogdell

As the metal siding went up on the newly constructed back wing of the house in 2010, passersby stopped and asked, “Is that a barn?” “Are you going to paint it?” “Are you going to have livestock?” Perhaps the cattle panel fence added to their perceptions, which in fact were true to past use of this original Davis farmhouse site.

The Mello family bought it in the early 1920s. They were immigrants from Portugal who went into dairy and pig farming, like many other Portuguese farmers in this part of the Central Valley. Possibly the house had been built just a few years before during World War I, or perhaps it dates to before the turn of the twentieth century. The moulding throughout the house is similar to that in San Francisco homes built before the 1906 earthquake. A Yolo County map in the UC Davis archives has a structure on the site in 1900 in the same place as the house, but maybe then it actually was a barn. The Robsons owned the property before the Mellos, farming the plot adjacent to the Hunts, whose land is where The Cannery is now being built.
Alfred (“Chat”) and “Nini” Zalunardo – the pillars of the neighborhood – say the barn was closer to Pole Line, and there may have been another down Claremont to the west (closer to where the cul-de-sac Mello Place is today). The Zalunardos have lived next door for fifty-four years, since 1960, when the Mellos sold most of their land to the city of Davis for construction of a new neighborhood. At that time, they say the farm included the land between Pole Line, Eighth Street, L Street, and Claremont drive, a sizeable tract.
Manuel (“Manny”) Mello lived here his entire life, sitting on the front porch steps, talking to anyone who would stop and listen. He was a character, everyone says. After he passed away in 2007, the house continued its decline. The front porch steps sagged, the railing was broken, there was no heating nor even a back door, and the back part of the house that the Mellos had added on in 1961 was actually collapsing. Water damage had cracked the basement wall beneath their addition. Originally the root cellar had been a separate structure, where every year Mr. Mello aged his famous homemade wine. The walls still bear the marks of the barrels.

“Just rent the house out until it falls down,” we heard one other prospective buyer say when the house went on the market in 2010. My then-husband Todd Gogulski – a sports commentator for professional cycling – and I were the only ones brave enough to put in an offer. Banks told us no financing was available unless it was a construction loan, and after the economic crash, these were very hard to find. However, local banks in Davis and Yuba City made it possible.
In March, bulldozers razed the back part of the house after chainsaws cut the kitchen in half from roof to foundation. The chimney for the old wood-burning cookstove remains, as does the “cooler.” Before ice-boxes, “coolers” offered cool-storage for food by simply having screens above and below the pantry-like space, so that as the attic heated up during the day, passive cooling would draw air from below the house up through the “cooler.”
Todd and I had designed and built before in Santa Fe, New Mexico, using our own hands and the knowledge and help of friends who were builders. We knew we wanted “vigas” and “latillas” in the master bedroom ceiling (a wooden ceiling with large cross beams). Most the contractors we approached said they would frame the house with 2×4’s and sheetrock it, and then “hang” the beams off the framing on the inside, to make for the finishing “decorative feature.” We laughed – not only did we want 2×6” walls, but why would anyone use a strong structural feature like cross beams unstructurally? I should mention that I am an architectural historian and UC Davis Design professor.

Jeff de Vault was game to build them structurally. We hired De Vault Construction to repair the basement wall and frame the addition above it, putting all the height up to the existing roofline on the inside of the house, making for twelve-feet-high ceilings.

The original farmhouse has generous nine-foot ceilings and lots of windows for cross-ventilation, as it was built long before air-conditioning existed. Today, these simple strategies make for “sustainable” design. So many Davis homes are dark with low ceilings, so we intentionally added skylights, six-foot-tall windows, and eight-foot-tall French doors to let in the maximum of light.
To cut construction costs, we did much of the work ourselves. We installed or sub-contracted the electrical work (including removing the old knob-and-tube wiring from the farmhouse and updating it), the metal roof and siding, and the beautiful orange spiral stair to the basement.

I refinished the original claw-foot tub and found vintage bathroom fixtures, learning my way around Urban Ore and other architectural salvage places in Berkeley. Our 1940 O’Keefe and Merritt stove was free for the taking off craigslist from an Oakland homeowner, and the nine-foot-long double stainless sink and cabinets came from the UC Davis Bargain Barn.

A most special feature in the kitchen are the three large vintage refrigerator doors we salvaged from the former UC Davis Food Science building – now Cruess Hall where the Design department is based. They were the cooler doors for the yeast storage for the viticulture and brewing programs.

UC Davis architectural historian Simon Sadler describes the house as the “new California vernacular.” “It is still somehow clearly a farmhouse even though it’s now an urban home,” he says. It is even an urban farm, given the size of the lot (10,400 sq ft) and the gardens. The passion flower vine on the front fence is home to the largest population of Gulf Fritillary butterflies that Davis has seen in the last thirty-five years, according to entomologists at UCD’s Bohart Entomology Museum. Orange butterflies fill the garden each July and August.

Technically, whoever next owns this special historic Davis property could have a goat, if the City would allow it, as this plot is exempt from the covenants and restrictions that are over the rest of the neighborhood. Sadler adds that the “strong color, corrugated metal, intriguing proportions and eclectic industrial detailing nicely link the two phases of the town’s history – from agricultural, to urban.”

The “Nugget Dream House” – as strangers call it – will be for sale by owner, listing at $695,000, starting August 1st. Open house will be from 9-6pm the weekend of August 1st, 2nd and 3rd. For more information, please see the photo album at or contact the owner at

Contact Information:
Christina Cogdell
Associate Professor, Department of Design
UC Davis Chancellor’s Fellow
1506 Claremont Drive
505-670-6107 (cell)



Special to The Enterprise

Clyde Elmore photo



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo


Barnett trail1W

Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett works on trails around Lake Berryessa and emphasizes wildfire safety for all of his crews. Charlotte Orr/Courtesy photo

Clyde ElmoreW

Clyde Elmore. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo

July 17, 2014 |



July 17, 2014 |

    Number of Well Permit Applications



Elizabeth Case

Charles M. Blow: ‘The Buck Stops With Me’

July 17, 2014 |

(EDS: SUBS 2nd graf to CORRECT wording of Boehner quote. NO other changes.);
Commentary: ‘The Buck Stops With Me’

c.2014 New York Times News Service

In trying to lay the blame for the border crisis on the White House’s doorstep, House Speaker John Boehner exploded at a news conference on Thursday, saying of the president:

“He’s been president for 5 1/2 years! When is he going to take responsibility for something?”

The suggestion in the question — that the president doesn’t take responsibility for anything — is so outrageously untrue that it demands strong rebuttal.

President Barack Obama hasn’t taken all the blame Republicans have ascribed to him, nor should he have. But he has often been quick to take responsibility.

In 2009, after the administration came under fire for AIG executives’ receiving bonuses after the bailout, Obama said on the lawn of the White House:

“Ultimately I’m responsible. I’m the president of the United States. We’ve got a big mess that we’re having to clean up. Nobody here drafted those contracts. Nobody here was responsible for supervising AIG and allowing themselves to put the economy at risk by some of the outrageous behavior that they were engaged in. We are responsible, though. The buck stops with me.”

After the failed bombing plot on Christmas Day in 2009 by a young Nigerian man with plastic explosives sewn into his underwear, the president took responsibility for intelligence lapses, saying the next month:

“Moreover, I am less interested in passing out blame than I am in learning from and correcting these mistakes to make us safer. For ultimately, the buck stops with me.”

In a 2011 interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, the president took responsibility for the economy and the rate at which it was being repaired, saying:

“Well, here’s what I remember, is that when I came into office, I knew I was going to have a big mess to clean up and, frankly, the mess has been bigger than I think a lot of people anticipated at the time. We have made steady progress on these fronts, but we’re not making progress fast enough.

“And what I continue to believe is that ultimately the buck stops with me. I’m going to be accountable. I think people understand that a lot of these problems were decades in the making. People understand that this financial crisis was the worst since the Great Depression. But, ultimately, they say, look, he’s the president, we think he has good intentions, but we’re impatient and we want to see things move faster.”

(It should be noted that this president has produced 45 straight months of job growth, and the June jobs report released this month was particularly strong.)

In an interview in the 2012 election cycle, the president reiterated his philosophy about presidential responsibility in response to a question about Mitt Romney’s relationship to Bain Capital:

“Well, here’s what I know, we were just talking about responsibility, and as president of the United States, it’s pretty clear to me that I’m responsible for folks who are working in the federal government and, you know, Harry Truman said the buck stops with you.”

In a 2013 interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, the president said he was accountable for Washington gridlock:

“Well, look, ultimately, the buck stops with me. And so any time we are not moving forward on things that should be simple, I get frustrated.”

In an interview with MSNBC’s Chuck Todd after the health care rollout, the president took responsibility for the problems rather than simply pin them on Kathleen Sebelius, then the health and human services secretary, saying: “My priority right now is to get it fixed. … Ultimately, the buck stops with me. I’m the president. This is my team. If it is not working, it is my job to get it fixed.”

(The site is now fixed, the law is working, and according to a Gallup report issued Thursday the uninsured rate has dropped to “the lowest quarterly average recorded since Gallup and Healthways began tracking the percentage of uninsured Americans in 2008.”)

This president is a habitual blame-taker. This is the anti-George W. Bush. The fess-upper in chief. He is the antidote to the eight previous years of obfuscation, fault-dodging and flat-out denial.

This is one of the traits that made Obama an attractive candidate, and it is one of his best traits as a president.

But taking his share of responsibility does not mean he must acquiesce to his opponents and absolve them of guilt, particularly not an intransigent Congress that would rather do nothing than something, particularly not Republican leaders who envision opportunity in opposition. The president has a duty to himself and the country to call them out for the part they play in our problems.

The real question, Boehner, is not when the president will take personal responsibility for something. He has. Many times. The real question is, When will you?



New York Times News Service

Joe Nocera: Helping big companies compete

July 17, 2014 |

Commentary: Helping Big Companies Compete

c.2014 New York Times News Service

Last week, Standard & Poor’s issued a short report about Boeing. “Boeing Co. Faces Long-Term Credit Risks If The U.S. Export-Import Bank Isn’t Reauthorized,” read the alarming heading.

In dollar volume, Boeing is America’s single largest exporter. It is one of our country’s strongest manufacturers. It employs more than 150,000 people, and last year it sent checks worth $48 billion to some 15,600 subcontractors. In competing with the likes of Europe’s Airbus and Canada’s Bombardier, it takes advantage of loan guarantees and financings offered by the Export-Import Bank — just as those competitors rely on their own export credit agencies for loan guarantees and financings. Without the help it gets from the Ex-Im Bank, Boeing would undoubtedly lose business to those competitors.

And, as S&P was suggesting, it could also see its credit rating lowered if it had to finance and guarantee loans to its airline customers “in order to remain competitive.” Clearly, S&P did not view this a positive development. Nonetheless, on Monday, The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page — which is among the conservative voices leading the charge against the reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank — hailed that same S&P report because it also said that, in the short term, Boeing would be able to find financing. Thus has the Ex-Im Bank become the current Rorschach test of American politics.

I am returning to this subject because I continue to find it mind-boggling that anyone in Washington would want to pursue a path that is so clearly destructive to the economy. But that is exactly what is happening. Conservative organizations like Heritage Action for America and Americans for Prosperity (financed by the Koch brothers) have made killing the Ex-Im Bank their cause. And it has been taken up by Tea Party Republicans in the House, as well as Jeb Hensarling, the powerful chairman of the House Financial Services Committee. Although it is likely that the Senate will pass a reauthorization bill this month, if the House doesn’t follow suit by the end of September, the Ex-Im Bank will not be reauthorized. Companies that rely on the Ex-Im Bank’s array of financing products to complete deals will, unquestionably, be hurt. Many of them will be small and medium-size companies that are able to export only because of the assistance they get from the Ex-Im Bank. I have written about them in previous columns.

But some will be big guns like Boeing, Caterpillar and General Electric. It’s worth dwelling on these large companies for two reasons. First, customers of these big companies get the bulk of the Ex-Im Bank’s assistance. Though this seems completely logical — the biggest companies do the biggest deals, after all — this has also made them a target of the right, which views the relationship between the bank and American multinationals as the paradigmatic example of “crony capitalism.”

Second, most of the arguments made against the Ex-Im Bank revolve around its help to the big companies, not the small ones. For instance, it is argued that big companies have their own means of helping customers finance deals. That’s true, but it’s the customers, not the companies, that are pushing for export credit guarantees. A Boeing source told me that it is hearing from customers and potential customers about the fate of the Ex-Im Bank. “It’s a big deal,” my source said, especially in places like Africa, where conventional financing for aircraft is hard to come by.

“Nobody is saying these companies are going to die if they can’t use the Ex-Im Bank,” said Gary Clyde Hufbauer, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics and a member of the Ex-Im Bank’s advisory board. “The issue is their ability to meet their competition.”

Hufbauer ticked off some of the competitors: Siemens of Germany is a huge company that competes with GE; Komatsu of Japan competes with Caterpillar; and, of course, Airbus competes with Boeing. Each of them gets assistance from their own export credit agency, none of which will go away if the U.S. decides not to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank.

One thing the House Republicans have sought is a commitment from the Treasury Department to lobby for the elimination of export credit agencies around the world. But this is an ideological pipe dream. Other countries have no interest in walking away from export assistance; indeed, countries like China and Japan are far more wedded to this kind of assistance than the U.S. is.

In its editorial on Monday, The Journal mocked the phrase “unilateral disarmament” in regards to the Export-Import Bank. But that is what it would be. There are times when we have to accept the world as it is, rather than how we wish it would be. And like other countries, we ought to be helping our companies get business, and thus increase employment and economic growth — not forcing them to compete with one hand tied behind their backs.



Thomas Friedman: Order versus disorder, Part 2

July 17, 2014 |

Commentary: Order Versus Disorder, Part 2

c.2014 New York Times News Service

I’ve argued for a while now that it is always useful to study the Israeli-Arab conflict because it is to the wider war of civilizations what off-Broadway is to Broadway. A lot of stuff starts there and then goes to Broadway.

So what’s playing off-Broadway these days? The Israeli-Arab conflict has become a miniature of the most relevant divide in the world today: the divide between the “world of order” and the “world of disorder.”

Israel faces nonstate actors in civilian clothes, armed with homemade rockets and drones, nested among civilians on four of its five borders: Sinai, Gaza, Lebanon and Syria. And what is most striking about this play is that the traditional means of bringing order seem ineffective. Israel, a mini-superpower, keeps pummeling the ragtag Islamist militias in Gaza with its modern air force, but the superempowered Palestinian militants, leveraging cheap high-tech tools, keep coming back with homemade rockets and even a homemade drone. You used to need a contract with Boeing to get a drone. Now you can make one in Gaza.

What to do? For starters, it would be great if the big powers of the world of order — the United States, Russia, China, Japan, India and the European Union — were able to collaborate more in stemming the spread of the world of disorder. That is certainly necessary. But the prospects for that are limited. No power these days wants to lay hands on the world of disorder because all you win is a bill. And even if they did, it would not be sufficient.

In my view, the only way Israel can truly curtail the Hamas rocket threat is if the Palestinians of Gaza demand that the rockets stop. Sure, Israel can inflict enough pain on all of Gaza to get a cease-fire, but it never lasts. The only sustainable way to do it is by Israel partnering with moderate Palestinians in the West Bank to build a thriving state there, so Gaza Palestinians wake up every day and say to the nihilistic Hamas: “We want what our West Bank cousins have.” The only sustainable controls are those that come from within.

That is how the U.S. military defeated the earlier version of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, when the jihadists largely took over Iraq’s Anbar province in 2006-07. The United States partnered with the Sunni Muslim tribal leaders who didn’t want puritanical Islam, or their daughters to be forced to marry fundamentalists, or to give up their whiskey.

But we did not just arm them. We brokered an agreement of shared guns, shared power and shared values — about the future of Iraq — between those Sunni tribesmen and Iraq’s ruling Shiite president, Nouri al-Maliki. That is what ended the jihadist disorder there in 2007.

And then what did al-Maliki do as soon as we left Iraq? He stopped paying the Sunni tribal militias and tried to arrest moderate Sunni politicians. Rather than building on the foundation we laid of power-sharing, al-Maliki uprooted it. That is why ISIL found it so easy to move in. Iraqi Sunnis weren’t going to fight for al-Maliki’s government. No trust, no power-sharing — no order.

Jewish settlers in Israel have done all they could to build more settlements and undermine Palestinian trust that Israel will ever share sufficient power for a West Bank Palestinian state to emerge. And the moderate, secular Palestinian leadership in the West Bank all too often has shown too little courage to compromise at crunchtime. So no compelling West Bank alternative to Hamas’ nihilism exists. Israel, the moderate Palestinians and al-Maliki all wasted the quiet of the past few years. And al-Maliki and Israel’s leaders now insist on wiping out the military threats they face from radicals — before rebuilding or reconsidering any of the political alternatives that they themselves helped to scuttle. That won’t work.

Patrick Doherty, author of “A New U.S. Grand Strategy” in Foreign Policy magazine, argues that if you look at the traditional responses to the world of disorder by both U.S. and other leaders, you notice that there are a lot of “controllers and disrupters but no builders. Our leaders were trained in the control tactics of the Cold War — aka ‘crisis management.’ So it’s no surprise that we are using our power only to hedge risk and preserve a failing status quo. But now we need our leaders to be builders with enough foresight to shape a sustainable international order — and to support regional leaders committed to the same.”

Control, notes Doherty, is surely better than chaos. But as we have seen with the controllers America has tended to adopt in Egypt, Iraq and Israel, their brand of control “tends toward stagnation and excesses, as power is concentrated to counter the forces of chaos.”

When all the old means of top-down control are decreasingly available or increasingly expensive (in a world of strong people and strong technologies, being a strongman isn’t what it used to be) leaders and their people are going to eventually have to embrace a new, more sustainable, source of order that emerges from the bottom up and is built on shared power, values and trust. Leadership will be about how to cultivate that kind of order.

Yes, yes. I know that sounds impossibly hard. But when isolated Gazans can make their own drones, order doesn’t come easy anymore.



Thomas Friedman

Ken’s Bike-Ski-Board

July 16, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

University Honda

July 16, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

List of CSAs

July 14, 2014 |

1. > Good Humus
2. >Full Belly

3. > Eat Well

4. > Terra Firma

5. > Pacific Star Gardens

6. > Del Rio Botanical

7. >Farm Fresh to You/Capay Organics

8. > Riverdog

9. > Devoda Gardens

10. > The Student Farm

11. > Soil Born

12. >Free Spirit Farm

13. > Say Hay Farms

14. > Heavy Dirt

15. > Shooting Star

16. > Coco Ranch

17. > Steiner College CSA

18. Capay Valley Shop Farmshares-

19. UC Davis Student Farm –




Elizabeth Case

Are we there yet? There’s no T-E-A-M in S-O-N



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo


Barnett trail1W

Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett works on trails around Lake Berryessa and emphasizes wildfire safety for all of his crews. Charlotte Orr/Courtesy photo

Clyde ElmoreW

Clyde Elmore. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo


July 16, 2014 |

Having just witnessed World Cup Fever by most members of planet Earth, I’m left reflecting on sports fandom. Namely, I’m trying to temper my disdain for feverish support of teams where not even one of the players is a member of your family.

I think this switch happened for me somewhere around July, 2011. Prior to that, I could muster a reasonable amount of excitement for college and professional sports.

The first big BIG game I attended was in 1986 when my UCLA Bruins went to the Rose Bowl. The Bruins played the Iowa Hawkeyes, and the game was exactly how a UCLA fan would want it.

I also attended many exciting Bruin-versus-Trojan match-ups, and with Troy Aikman and Reggie Miller playing their hearts out for UCLA during my college career, sports offered a lot of thrill.

Speaking of World Cup Fever, I actually attended a World Cup game in 1994. My husband’s parents lived in Palo Alto then, and they caught the fever with a vengeance when FIFA World Cup Group B played a series of games at Stanford Stadium. My in-laws would wander over to the stadium within an hour of game-time, buying tickets to whatever match was about to take place. Although my husband and I lived in Virginia at the time, we were visiting his parents who insisted we see one of the games.

We took in the Brazil versus Cameroon game, and what I distinctly remember was how insanely enthusiastic the crowd was. I thought it looked like fun to be so invested in a team.

“Invested” is an understatement when it comes to the NCAA Final Four (basketball) tournament my husband and I attended in April, 2013. The fans were out of their heads with excitement over their teams, and I envied their genuine joy.

Because me? I lost my ability to feel joy over sports unless a player is wearing a jersey with “Perez” on the back.

How watching my kids play sports has made it unsavory to watch sports where I’m not related to players. Debbie and I talked about how she’d been to the A’s World Series but it’s more fun to see (ask Debbie what game to include)

For me, I’ve been to the NCAA championships. Seen my school win the Rose Bowl, even a World Cup game when it was in Palo Alto (crowd was so into it) is nothing compared to my son’s pitching in the Juniors d64 championship. That was the pinnacle of sports spectating

Now I’ve gotten to where I’m not interested in my son’s soccer game unless has the ball. No team in I

This week my younger son is at track camp, and I would just as soon sit in the hot bleachers watching him practice the hurdles than I would …

But as the Enterprise headline said on Thursday, July 14, 2011, the game that mattered most was when “DALL juniors use an offensive explosion to capture D64 championship”



Fiona Buck pushes the limits in para-athletics

July 11, 2014 |

While many teenagers spend their summer vacation sprawled on the couch watching Netflix, it’s a summer of sunscreen and protein shakes for Fiona Buck, a local para-athlete who swims like there’s no tomorrow.

Buck, 18, grabbed a global spotlight by setting three world records at an international swim competition for para-athletes in Guayaquil, Ecuador, in June. Her journey to success, however, takes root in Davis’ swim and special-needs communities.

Early in her life, Buck was diagnosed with a global development delay that included delayed oral language development and hypotonia, or low muscle tone. Additionally, she also deals with epilepsy, a language disorder (apraxia of speech) and visual difficulties that affect her depth perception and peripheral vision.

Buck was born on a frigid January day in Terrance, Canada. The Buck family owned a small home in Masset, where the nearest hospital was a ferry ride and several hours of driving away. When this distance became too challenging to accommodate Buck’s emerging disabilities, her family knew it was time to move.

In 2000, her father, Peter, found work in Sacramento and the family settled into Davis and the expansive special-needs community within it.

A place to call home

Young Fiona dove headfirst into Davis’ swim community. During the family’s first summer in the area, her mother, Seana Burke, arranged for Fiona to take swimming lessons through the SummerDarts. The SummerDarts is a program that teaches youngsters a variety of swim skills and water fitness.

“We could tell right away that Fiona was a fish,” said Burke, smiling, “She loves to be in water; it’s the most comfortable element for her.” Even though she was only 5 years old, Fiona instantly took to the water.

Three years later, Fiona joined Team Davis, a network of families with special-needs children.

“One of the missions of Team Davis is inclusion,” said Kelly McDonald, a swim coach with Team Davis. “Our main focus is to show how our guys bring value to the community,” she said.

Team Davis puts on activities for all ages ranging from athletics to work skills programs to quarterly dances, or “Kokomos.”

Buck’s active participation with the organization includes swimming as well as playing softball, soccer and running. “My friend is gonna make me play golf,” she said, rolling her eyes.

McDonald, who has coached Buck since she joined Team Davis, has watched her grow.

“One of the coolest things about coaching the kids that are Fiona’s age is that I’ve watched them grow up,” said McDonald, “…to see them getting better not just in sports, but in life.”

At Team Davis, members with a wide spectrum of abilities are always encouraged to participate. McDonald said the swimmers range from “world-class to walking in the pool.”

Through Team Davis, Buck was able to take her first steps toward competitive swimming. She began competing in Special Olympics Northern California five years ago. Special Olympics gives para-athletes the opportunity to compete at the same standards that Olympic athletes are held to. The officiators used at the events are the same as those at national competitions, McDonald explained.

The Summer Games, which took place June 27-29 in Davis, are one of the most anticipated Special Olympics events of the year. Swimmers high-five the swimmer in the lane next to them, even if they are on opposing teams, McDonald said.

“It’s just about being here, doing this, enjoying people and challenging themselves,” the coach said. “We stress sportsmanship and camaraderie more than anything else.”

Camaraderie wasn’t the only thing Buck gained this year, however. After the most recent Summer Games, she added four bright, gold medals to her display at home.

Sharpening her competitive edge 

The 2013 Summer Games opened the doors to new competition for Buck. A fellow parent at the Summer Games noticed that Buck was making times that qualified her for competitions through the International Paralympic Committee. This qualification brought her to a regional meet in Santa Clara last September.

Buck’s successes there led to a series of victories that had her racing in Edmonton, Canada, for the CanAm Games and across the country to Miami for the U.S. Paralympics Swimming Nationals.

In Miami, Buck tore through her events, taking up to 10 seconds off of her earlier times and winning a gold medal in the 200-meter backstroke. After nationals, Buck was ranked No. 2 in the United States in the S14 classification.

Following the competition in Miami, Buck was hand-selected for the U.S. Paralympic swim team. Made up of a total of 10 athletes, the team competed in the Guayaquil Open in Ecuador on June 6-8.

At Guayaquil, Buck faced new competition against international para-athletes.

“Canada, Australia, South Africa, England, France and Sweden have been investing in their Paralympians for a long time,” Burke said.

These countries fund training facilities and cover expenses for their para-athletes. Burke wasn’t sure how the U.S. team would match up against them in the races.

But when the races came, Buck excelled. Competing on a relay team, she not only won gold but also set three world records in the 400-meter medley relay, 400-meter freestyle relay and 200-meter relay.

Beyond their victories in the water, traveling to Guayaquil helped the U.S. team members form close friendships and experience unprecedented independence, according to Burke.

“(The team) wanted to do team bonding. … It was really serious, no moms allowed,” she joked. Some of the athletes even traveled to the competition independently.

Buck is training for the next CanAm Games that take place this winter. In the meantime, she continues her training and participation with Team Davis, the AquaMonsters and the Davis High School swim team.

Though the walls of her room are decorated with what Buck describes as “thousands” of medals and ribbons, mostly gold, a blue and white striped medal with white golden bands declaring in a thick font “Guayaquil” is her favorite.



Felicia Alvarez

Avid 8/8

July 13, 2014 |

What: When: Where:
Book talk and signing with Dorena Rode Friday, August 8, 2014, 7:30pm Avid Reader, 617 Second St., Davis, CA 95616
Event Contact: Nicholas Weigand, 530-758-4040,
How to be Happy All the Time UCD alumna to give talk and book signing at Avid Reader
Davis, California — Dorena Rode returns to Davis to give a talk about the steps to permanent happiness based on her book, The Twelve Steps as a Path to Enlightenment—How the Buddha Works the Steps on Friday, August 8, 2014 at 7:30pm at the Avid Reader downtown. First twenty people will receive a free gift (handmade lavender sachet) with their book purchase.
The Twelve Steps as a Path to Enlightenment – How the Buddha Works the Steps explains how the spiritual principals embodied in the Twelve Steps (of Alcoholic Anonymous) parallel the Buddhist teachings for reaching ultimate enlightenment. This book is a great introduction to the world view of Tibetan Buddhists such as the Dalai Lama. Dorena demystifies key concepts such as the six perfections, emptiness, refuge, bodhichitta, renunciation, and the development of watchfulness and concentration.
This guidebook, written by spiritual teacher and life coach, Dorena Rode, clearly presents a step by step proven method for increasing joy, making life more meaningful and destroying self-limiting beliefs. The spiritual seeker, whether in recovery or not, finds they can end their specific sufferings (which may include addiction to alcohol, drugs, food, sex, debting, etc) without the need to have a belief in a higher power or God.
Karen R. (Amazon review) writes, “What an awesome book—I couldn’t wait to finish reading it so I could begin again and study it (which I am doing now!)! This book is great for experienced members or newcomers to the recovery program. A true tool of enhancement to one’s personal growth if you are of non-faith, of enlightened faith and even of Christian faith.”
Avid Reader is a local independent bookseller offering new hardbacks, paperbacks and eBooks; special orders at no charge; and complimentary wrapping.
Dorena Rode is an award winning speaker and has extensive experience in a multitude of disciplines. Her Twelve Step recovery began twenty-four years ago and she is a member of several programs. She studied Buddhism with the Asian Classics Institute and meditation with Master Culadasa of Dharma Treasure. She has a Ph.D. in physiology with an emphasis in alternative medicine from UC Davis (2004). For the past eighteen years she has maintained a regular practice of meditation and internal arts (Chi Gung, Tai Chi, Ba Gua & Hsing Yi). Currently she lives, practices and teaches in Phoenix Arizona.
Dorena Rode is available for pre-event phone interviews. For booking presentations, media appearances, interviews, and/or book-signings contact (707) 291-7731 Dorena’s blog:



Special to The Enterprise

The Paint Chip

July 12, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

DeBartolo & Co Fine Jewelers

July 12, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

Bubble Belly moms | babies | kids

July 12, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

Tres Hermanas

July 12, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

UC Davis Student Ashley Ott Places 1st Runner Up at Miss California Pageant

July 12, 2014 |

(Fresno, CA 7/10/14) On June 28th, Ashley Ott became the first UC Davis student and Sacramento representative in 23 years and the first UC Davis student in history to place in the top 5 at the 90 year-old Miss California competition.

The Miss America Organization is the largest scholarship foundation in the world for young women with more than 49 million dollars awarded annually to the 70,000 young women who participate in this program each year. This year, 54 local titleholders representing various counties and regions throughout the state competed for the title of Miss California and the opportunity to compete in the Miss America Pageant this September.

On Saturday night, 15 top state finalists were chosen to perform at the William Saroyan Theater in Fresno. Contestants were judged based on a panel-conducted interview and in the categories of physical fitness, evening gown, talent and the on-stage question. By the end of the night, five finalists remained: Marina Inserra, Miss Yosemite Valley, Felicia Stiles, Miss East Bay Cities, Bree Morse, Miss Orange County, Emily Tom, Miss County of San Francisco and Ashley Ott, Miss Sacramento County. Ott placed first runner up with her performance of George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue while Inserra was crowned as the victor after her vocal performance of “Bring Him Home” from Le Miserables. Inserra was awarded $12,000 in scholarship monies and will continue on to compete for the title of Miss America this September.

Since being crowned Miss Sacramento County this past February, Ott has graduated from UC Davis with honors, a major in Cell Biology and minors in Chicano/a Studies and Art Studio and is currently in the process of applying to medical schools. Ashley currently works with the Children’s Miracle Network as a member of their business council and is busy promoting her platform, Trading Cope to Hope – Increasing Awareness and Support for Children with Cancer and has been working in the hospitals of Sacramento to improve the experiences of children within the pediatric oncology unit and to educate and inspire children in the community to take charge of their health from a young age.

At the conclusion of the competition, Ott was awarded $7,000 in scholarships and was also awarded the Miss America Community Service Award for her extensive volunteer work in Honduras, Mexico and the Sacramento area while also receiving the second highest interview score in the system. She will continue to represent California at the National Sweetheart Pageant, a competition for the runners up in the Miss America system, that will be held on August 31st in Hoopeston, Illinois. Ott looks forward to competing in the Miss California competition and representing the Sacramento area again next year. If you want to find out more information about Ashley or the Miss Sacramento County Program, please contact or go to our website at



elias 8/1 changing of the political guard

July 12, 2014 |



For a state that has long been a symbol of youth, there’s been a lot of age among California’s preeminent politicians of the last decade. But that began to change in 2012, and the shift accelerated this summer as many of the old guard chose not to brave the “top two” primary system that threatened to expose them to serious intra-party challenges.

Changes in the state’s congressional delegation two years ago saw departures of the long-serving likes of Fortney “Pete” Stark (East Bay area), David Dreier (San Dimas), Jerry Lewis (Redlands), Elton Gallegly (Simi Valley), Mary Bono Mack (Palm Springs), George Radanovich (Merced), all either retiring or getting turned out.

The trend continued this year, with congressional kingpins like Howard “Buck” McKeon (Santa Clarita), Henry Waxman (West Los Angeles) and George Miller (East Bay area) retiring. All three are or have been chairmen of major House committees. This is as bi-partisan a trend as can be, affecting Republicans and Democrats almost equally.

It will surely grow in coming years, as a quick look at the ages of those who represent the coastal districts from San Francisco to Santa Barbara makes clear. These usually solid Democratic districts stretch hundreds of miles south from the San Francisco turf of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, 74, who bristles at questions about her age. There are also Jackie Speier, 64, of San Mateo; Anna Eshoo, 71, of Palo Alto; Zoe Lofgren, 66, whose district reaches from San Jose to Gilroy; Mike Honda, 72, now facing a serious challenge in his San Jose district; Sam Farr, 72, of Monterey County, and Lois Capps, 76, of Santa Barbara County.

All are highly capable. But any of them could draw a major challenge at any time, as Stark did two years ago, when the 40-year congressional veteran from Alameda County, now 82, was surprised and beaten by an intra-party challenge from then 31-year-old Eric Swalwell, a Dublin city councilman. Swalwell beat Stark in their all-Democrat 2012 runoff by a thin 52-48 percent margin. So Stark, like many of his former colleagues, would most likely still be in Congress but for the top two system which permitted the Republican minority in his district – displeased by his long liberal record – to vote against him. No GOP candidate would stand a chance in that district.

Chances are seats in most districts seeing change will not change parties, but they will get younger representatives who figure to start as back-benchers many years away from any hope of chairing a big-time committee.

Change is also in the wind in statewide offices, where Gov. Jerry Brown will likely be reelected one last time this year, with the Democratic logjam behind him at last beginning to break up after that. Former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, for one, wanted to be governor four years ago, but Brown’s strength forced him to settle for lieutenant governor. Still, no one will simply hand him the top state job. Expect people like Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris, Controller John Chiang, former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and possibly his successor, current Mayor Eric Garcetti, all to consider 2018 runs for the state’s top job.

And should either of California’s aging pair of U.S. senators, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, step down – a possibility if Democrats lose their Senate majority this fall and both lose the committee chairmanships they love – any of the current gubernatorial prospects and some folks now in Congress might seek that job instead of running for governor.

It’s tough to predict who might emerge among Republicans, because they now hold no statewide offices and are not favored to win any this fall, either. But a respectable autumn run against Brown by businessman Neel Kashkari, Brown’s fall opponent, could propel him into prominence.

The one thing that’s sure in all this is change. It’s coming, as is the end of the near monopoly on high office now enjoyed by people in their 60s, 70s and 80s.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



All in the Family 2014 – Tres Hermanas



Jonathan Eisen. Courtesy photo


Barnett trail1W

Eric “Bam Bam” Barnett works on trails around Lake Berryessa and emphasizes wildfire safety for all of his crews. Charlotte Orr/Courtesy photo

Clyde ElmoreW

Clyde Elmore. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo



July 11, 2014 |



What the newspaper trends of 2014 mean for the industry’s feature

July 08, 2014 |

What the newspaper trends of 2014 mean for the industry’s future
By: Caroline Little, President and CEO of the Newspaper Association of America
Word count: 793
The newspaper industry has transformed in a way that we could not have imagined just a decade ago.
Across the globe, there is a renewed energy to innovate, strategize, and meet these growing opportunities and challenges. That was the theme of the World Newspapers Congress, which I had the pleasure of speaking earlier this month, and it rings very true for our industry in America.
We are already halfway through 2014. From the creative solutions and trends I am seeing, we are in an excellent position to further evolve and thrive for the rest of this year and far beyond.
Newspapers continue to command a huge audience and remain the most-trusted source of news and information. While that will not change, there has been a key shift in the way information is delivered and audience is engaged. The World Editors Forum revealed their Top 10 Trends in 2014 report and it is intriguing to explore the way those trends will impact our business.
The importance and influence of data and analytics on every part of our industry cannot be underestimated. It is only going to grow. Much has been made of recent ventures in data-focused journalism, such as statistics and data-driven predictions that will figure more and more heavily in mainstream journalism. Publishers and journalists across the country are now relying on hard metrics to assess the readership and engagement of a given story, and the more we do so, the more successful we will be as we understand what interests  drive our unique audiences and tailor our offerings accordingly.
As I’ve noted before, data plays a critical role in our increasingly personalized world. The days of a one-size-fits-all solution to news are ending, and newspapers are in a strong position to capitalize. We have enormous amounts of data at our disposal to deliver a customized news experience. The opportunity lies in analyzing and leveraging that data to create and strengthen our products for consumers and advertisers.
As we do this, we will see advertisers follow. The advertising landscape has likewise changed dramatically, as consumers now choose whether or not they view ads and insist on relevant, personalized material. Advertisers are looking for precisely targeted audiences, and newspapers’ data on user engagement and experiences will enable them to deliver exactly that.
Another trend that will significantly shape our industry is thinking about mobile strategy first, instead of it being tacked on as an after-thought. Excellent video products have become critical storytelling vehicles for newspapers, with the possibility that our quick, agile videos – perfect for mobile platforms – can challenge traditional broadcasting. Our focus in video over the next few months should focus on refining individual formulas for creating successful videos and integrating them even better with our other content offerings. 
The ways in which journalists report the news may be changing but the essence of a free press is not, despite being challenged on multiple fronts around the world. We have seen journalists in Venezuela and Hungary threatened with violence or had information suppressed in the past couple of months. Here in the United States, New York Times reporter James Risen could face stiff fines or jail time for not sharing confidential sources, which shows why we need a federal shield law for reporters to be able to covering our government without fear of prosecution.
Newspapers are at the forefront of researching and planning for the explosion of wearable tech, developing and refining the types of journalism that will be most successful. The ubiquity of social media, push notifications and short-form stories for apps has created a distinct, on-the-go audience that will look for even more immediately available, “snackable” content with the influence of wearables.
However, as Reuters’ Digital News Report points out, that will create greater audience segmentation as younger generations use smartphones and tablets to constantly consume news, while more traditional offerings remain the product of choice for other generations. Newspapers are tasked with balancing and integrating strategies across each platform and generation to effectively reach every audience. Indeed, one of the biggest mistakes leaders in any industry could make today is eschewing one platform for another, trendier medium without considering how they complement each other.
As we prepare for the second half of 2014, it is encouraging to look at the amount of growth, innovation and new investment we have seen in the first half. I am proud to say that next year, the NAA will be partnering with the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers in bringing the World Newspaper Congress to our hometown of Washington, D.C.
I’m eagerly anticipating where our industry will be in 12 months. With the wealth of talent and energy at our disposal, I have confidence that these trends forecast a very bright year.



Special to The Enterprise

Burr oped

July 08, 2014 |

If you are old enough, you might recall a song of the late 1940’s I’m My Own Grandpa, which suggested that one’s relationships could become so twisted and convoluted, as a person you might not recognize all the roles you occupy. This crisscrossing of connections might equally apply to a current concern in our area about oil trains traveling through our area and why it is a direct descendent of several recent Supreme Court decisions.
As legalese sometimes states, “but for …..” the Citizens United and McCutcheon decisions, we would not have Corporations exercising rights that now allow them to pump unlimited money, without disclosure, into political actions. In the most naked way — money can equal power and influence as never before. One of the big users of this privilege is the Oil & Gas industry; the folks who brought us “fracking.”
Fracking, the new love-child of the O&G folks, is being touted as the answer for increasing employment, decreasing our oil dependency, a cudgel for negotiations in the Mid-East, and an all-around marvel. Why would anyone be against it?
Taking a closer look at fracking has revealed many undesirable traits in that gene pool. It uses enormous amounts (4.4 million gallons per well) of pure clean water and turns it into polluted dross that we have to capture and store and try to figure out how to make less poisonous and how to dispose of (eventually). [Do you think it will impact our current drought conditions?]
The process of forcing that water into the ground seems to be stirring up the latent ability of here-to-for quiet territory to suddenly become earthquake prone. Imagine that! We now have tremors and shifting land in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and everywhere this oil exploration takes place. [Maybe disturbing agricultural land (and its impact on food supply), and increased insurance risk in cities which have never had to considered being earth-quake-proof ) are unplanned costs that the industry can ignore, but not the rest of us.]
The methane and other air pollutants that escape in the fracking process and through oil transfer and refining, especially of heavy crude, will hasten climate change and contribute to increasing health issues. [ Who will cover the cost of these changes – not the O&G industry.]
But look at the bright side. The Oil & Gas “gift” is this new shale product, which now just needs to get to refineries. We have a long history of shipping oil products by rail. Why would anyone object? [Won’t it reduce the price of gas and lessen our dependence on International fuel? NO!]
The potential for an oil spill increases with the increased number of tankers on the rails and how many of those cars are old and not suited to the more volatile oil we are now shipping. The promise of more Emergency Training and equipment (in some locations), better tanker cars (whenever they get produced), doesn’t really assuage our anxiety. How can it; those are only promises, and the push for the approval of the transport is happening now.
The pedigree of a disaster is a chain of many disasters. It is such a cliché to say The Root Of All Evil Is Money —- yet the avalanche of corporate money is providing the foundation on which this assault on our ecology has us up against decisions in an effort to get us to endorse a disaster waiting to happen. “But for —“ the power of money to buy political favor and policy, would we be trying to mitigate the effect of the oil trains? Wouldn’t we stop fracking instead? Wouldn’t the negative evidence of its effect on food production, water, air, climate, human and animal health, earthquakes — ecology in its broadest context — wouldn’t that be what we would unite around? Better yet — we could put our energy and intelligence into finding and supporting alternative energy sources and leave fossil fuels in the ground. [Think how that would impact our lives!]
Well — another cliché —- Follow the Money. With the least amount of effort we can see all the ways corporations gain from all this activity. And yes, workers in the related industries have gains. But the loss of essential elements of a good life for all citizens — clean air, clean water, sufficient food — is at risk. And if you haven’t noticed, profits in the related industries are hovering at the top of the organizational chart — not “trickling down,” not supporting a middle class, and frequently ignoring or castigating everyone else.
So what can you do? Write letters and participate in the effort to combat unsafe oil transport through our area. Contact Governor Brown and ask him to place a moratorium on fracking. Join with others to insist on policies and practices that will preserve the earth and seas. Find your voice to help influence overturning Citizens United. Pay attention to decisions that are turning us into an autocracy (where having money is not only the name of the game, it is the only chip or right that counts). Insist that we pursue renewable energy and keep diminishing your own use of fossil fuels until everyone considers it the least acceptable alternative.
Here is a partial list of consumer oriented groups, some with local chapters, some are statewide, and others are national organizations, that you can assist, and they can help you find what kind of citizen you want to be. These are internet addresses (www.), use them to get to their homepages so you can know what their main interests are, how long they’ve been around, etc.. Begin today to create the change you know needs to happen. (People for the American Way)
If you think none of this matters — then you better hope a lot of other people care and be thankful that you live in a country where you can ride on the coattails of those who do.

Barbara R. Burr
1020 Miller Dr.
Davis, CA 95616



Special to The Enterprise

Fleet Feet Sports

July 04, 2014 |



Special to The Enterprise

Dentist on road, treats elderly in nursing homes

August 01, 2014 |

By Bill Decker
The Lafayette Advertiser

LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — Add this to the list of things that get more difficult as we grow older: Going to the dentist.

If you’re in a nursing home, a trip to the dentist can be near impossible, financially or even physically. At the same time, our stake in good dental health grows, even to the point where a dental procedure is a matter of life or death.

Lafayette dentist Gregory Folse has built a practice, Outreach Dentistry, on providing dental care for such patients, including dozens each year who cannot pay. That’s why he was recently named Dentist of the Year by 232-HELP, the social service information and referral service.

“I’ve got a ‘no suffer’ policy in my office, that no patient will suffer from dental disease as long as we’re in this game,” Folse said. “We make sure all these folks are taken care of, regardless of the funding we may have. 232-HELP helps us organize that care.”

“It’s that kind of generosity of spirit that we look for in our Dentist of the Year,” said Rae Logan, executive director of 232-HELP.

Folse and dental assistant Abby Trahan were at Maison de Lafayette to begin the work of realigning dentures for two patients.

“I’ve found that most of my patients, as was the case this morning, have multiple differing diagnoses,” Folse said. “Sometimes they have 15 or 20 different diseases. They may have 15 to 20 medications.

“You tie that many diseases and that number of drugs with an abscessed tooth and an infection that won’t go away, then you’ve got a problem for a nursing home patient.”

Sometimes the problems can be lethal.

“Unfortunately, in my career I’ve seen numbers of patients who have passed away either directly because of poor oral health, due to an infection, or who have complications that come from the disease process combined with dental infections that worsen the diseases than they have.”

So Folse goes to the patients who can’t come to him.

A native of Raceland, Folse sometimes accompanied his grandfather, a physician, on house calls. After attending the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and the LSU School of Dentistry, Folse had a traditional dental practice for a few years.

“The need for what I do now is pretty profound,” he said.

Going into nursing homes meant leaving behind dental chairs and other pieces of major equipment. Folse carries portable versions of some of the tools of the trade with him.

Folse said that when he started treating nursing home patients in 1992, Medicaid, the state-federal health care coverage program, covered only dentures. Since then, reimbursements to participating dentists have improved. He also discovered that reimbursement rules let nursing home residents pay for dental care with Social Security money that would normally go to a nursing home. The state must make up for the lost revenue to the nursing home.

Folse receives a stipend from the nursing homes where he sees patients. Even so, Folse estimates that he gave away about $44,000 worth of care last year.

“He’s an amazing man,” said Logan at 232-HELP. “His dental practice focuses on the elderly, and a good part of our clients are the elderly and those who are disabled and unable to get dental services any other way. .

“If you live at the poverty level in Louisiana, you cannot afford to get your teeth cleaned. You’re unable to get your teeth pulled.”

Folse is advocating for nursing home dentistry and mobile dentistry at local public schools, publishing articles and talking to professional organizations and lawmakers.

“I look forward to making a patient who has poor oral function eat and chew,” Folse said, “and enjoy the three best events of the day, which are breakfast, lunch and supper.”


Information from: The Advertiser,




The Associated Press

The road left unpedaled: Davis looks to take advice from the best cycling knowledge in the world

June 26, 2014 |

Soon, Davis residents may be biking like the Dutch.

With one of the highest bicycle-friendly ratings of any American city by the exacting League of American Cyclists, Davis has few places left to look for new bicycling standards but abroad.

Far away from sunny Davis, the Dutch and Danish have built cycling empires throughout their road networks tested over decades. The Swedes have their “Vision Zero” — just adopted by New York City — to radically ensure the fewest number of traffic-related deaths as humanly possible.

Their advice is sought after worldwide, they tend to advise what is, in America, vastly unfamiliar kinds of roadway solutions and Davis has been instructed by the City Council to seek out their vision on specific pieces in Davis’ East Covell Corridor Plan.

City Councilman Brett Lee convinced his colleagues to direct city staff to seek out the Dutch Cycling Embassy on April 22 to address where the best location and design of grade separated crossings would be at the Cannery development and the East Covell Corridor Plan.

Lee said in an interview that his motivation was not purely to seek out international advice, but instead noted experts.

“We were talking about $14 million,” he said, adding that a then-estimated $25,000 cost on the front end to ensure the designs would work was quality control.

“When Davis needs some advice on bicycle connectivity, I think in Holland and in Denmark they are leaders,” Lee said. “If we picked a random U.S. city out of a map, we would be ahead of them.”

Lee raised the issue after he determined that neighborhood meetings made the prioritization of projects, and not experts.

“The people taking the leadership should be the architects and engineers,” he said. Lee worked for many years as a project engineer himself. “I f we were planning on making a $100,000 improvement, we wouldn’t need outside experts to come in.”

Lee cautions that Davis doesn’t have to have a Dutch system, but the community can gain from the transfer of knowledge.

Davis has been talking with the Dutch Cycling Embassy for months, and could sign a contract with a member agency sometime in the near future, according to Dave “DK” Kemp, Davis active transportation coordinator.







Summer HG: Fences: Check out your options

June 20, 2014 |

Check out your options

Tawny Maya McCray

There are many reasons to put fences up in your yard. They allow you to enjoy your outdoor areas and often are used to provide a sense of privacy or security or to enclose pets and small children. And although there are a number of options, styles and materials to choose from when erecting a fence, some materials work better than others, depending on where you live.
Maria Prior, trade show manager for the American Fence Association, says that in places where the weather changes dramatically with the seasons, cedar wood or chain-link fences are typical. “You’re dealing with the fence post expanding and constricting because of the cold and hot weather,” Prior says.
In places where there is water and sea salt, Prior says common fence materials are vinyl, aluminum and ornamental iron.
She says glass fences, a new trend in fencing, also are popping up in areas along the seaboard or near lakes. “It’s very pretty, so a lot of places that have marinas (are) going with glass panel fencing to give it that aesthetic look,” Prior says.
Desert conditions lend themselves well to composite, vinyl, ornamental iron or aluminum fencing, Prior says.
She adds that just because certain materials lend themselves to certain regions doesn’t mean people can’t choose the exact fence they want. “Look at the different styles and the different options that are available to you, and most importantly, ask for a sample of what it is that you’re going to be getting,” she says.
Some fence materials, such as vinyl, can be used just about anywhere. “(Vinyl is) good for all weather. That’s what’s good about the fence,” says Monica Schraidt, a sales representative for USA Vinyl. “You don’t have to ever replace it. Once you put it up, it’s there to stay.”
Schraidt says USA Vinyl manufactures its vinyl with titanium dioxide, which acts like a sun blocker. “It doesn’t fade. It’s not going to get that yellowish color that other kinds of fencing will get from the sun,” she says.
Schraidt adds that there is also little maintenance required on vinyl fencing. She says people can opt to power-wash it once a year to keep it looking nice.
When it comes to choosing a fence installer, Prior says you should go for somebody who is affiliated with an association. “Those people are the best in the industry,” she says. “You can rely on them to follow some code of ethics.”
Prior says it’s also good to check to see whether a company is licensed, insured and bonded.
And most importantly, she says, check references. According to Prior, if the fence is for a residence, you want to get two residential references and one commercial reference from a fence contractor. If the fence is for a commercial property, you should get two commercial references and one residential reference.
“I can’t tell you how many times we get calls from consumers after the fact,” Prior says. “And it’s like: ‘No, I didn’t use an AFA fence contractor. No, I didn’t check his references. No, I didn’t know he wasn’t bonded. And the fence that they put up is completely wrong. I’m short 2 feet, and my dog keeps getting out. What can I do?’”
It’s good to check references to avoid that sort of situation. “That way, you can weed out and find out: If something wasn’t done correctly or to their satisfaction, how did that fence contractor correct the problem?” Prior says.
Prior says that if you go through an association, such as the AFA, which has more than 900 member companies and 29 chapters in the United States and about 17 members internationally, many times if there is a problem, the association can go back and try to correct the situation on the company’s behalf.
If you were to use a non-member company and things went awry, your option might be to follow through with the Better Business Bureau and make a complaint against the company “so that they don’t do it to another individual,” Prior says.
She says that if a fence contractor can’t provide at least three references for you to check, it’s best to eliminate it from the running.
“The biggest thing is to make sure you’re not being taken advantage of,” Prior says.



Creators Syndicate

City wrestles with tax idea, water rates

June 19, 2014 |

The City Council took on a new tax measure and water rates at a study session Tuesday, coming to no final conclusions but seeming to figure out where each other’s positions are staked out.

The council zeroed in on wanting to pay for roads, sidewalks and refurbish existing community pools with any money it might get from a parcel tax or a general tax, such as a surcharge on utility bills, but it couldn’t provide much direction to city staff on exactly what kind of tax it would like and how long a life it would have.

On water rates, the council split.  Mayor Pro Tem Dan Wolk and Mayor Joe Krovoza want the Utility Rate Advisory Committee to focus on a pay-as-you-go conservation rate authored by residents Donna Lemongello and Matt Williams that would peg only 13 percent of its charge on fixed rates, leaving the rest up to how much water is used.

Brett Lee and Lucas Frerichs had concerns about tiers being unfair and wanted more information from city staff about how much money someone who used no water would be charged and the ease of finding financing for a largely volume-based rate, instead of a rate with a substantial fixed rate.

Newly-re-elected Councilwoman Rochelle Swanson was on vacation with her family and Councilman-elect Robb Davis, who sat in the audience and will be sworn in July 1, did not offer his views of specific tax measures or water rates during public comment. Mayor Joe Krovoza presided over one of his last public meetings as a member of the City Council.





Notes on Made in Yolo

June 14, 2014 |

Made in Yolo notes and assignments

Linda and Kim (Kim, I’m only telling you because this affects a couple of your interns):

(Other assignments to make: 

* Farm to fork (side bar with CSAs, farm tours)

* Service orgs…profile R&R, new location, money to mental health; STEAC, Davis Community Meals; Team Davis (pull from Thomas’ LL story) — Rachel

* High tech story…Bio Consortia story from Jason McAlister

* RIKI profile on Ursula Labermeier who designs most (all?) fashions for the store. Crystal Lau

* Davis Live Music Collective story: 22 members so far, people pay quarterly to attend concerts; grew out of house concerts; sold out a recent show at the Vets Memorial; performers are people you’d pay to see but couldn’t sell out a big show. Feature on who they’ve brought to town, who they will bring. Danny Tomasello involved, Kyle Monhollen is the leader. Landon Christenson
Debbie and I brainstormed some stories for Made in Yolo, and here’s what we’ve come up with. 

1. A lengthy farm-to-fork story that touches on many aspects. Assigned to Elizabeth:

Farmers markets are huge in this area (Davis, UCD’s, Woodland Healthcare, Sutter should all be mentioned, maybe just in a box, or maybe as a segment of the story.

Some details can be found in the following press release, and I grabbed a couple briefs about Sutter and Woodland Healthcare’s farmers markets (below that). 

Also, Monticello Bistro in town is a farm-to-fork restaurant, and Ann Evans and Georgeanne Brennan are columnists for us who might be good to interview (pioneers for this movement in the area, and Ann Evans is a co-founder of the Davis Farmers Market…). We have a story in WordPress about the Farmers Market cookbook that Evans and Brennan wrote, in case that offers any info.


From press release for Yolo Farm to Fork (Jan. 7)

Yolo Farm to Fork is pleased to announce the appointment of Davis resident Beth Harrison as the nonprofit’s first executive director. Harrison brings more than 15 years of strategic leadership and nonprofit management experience to the organization.

“Beth Harrison comes to us with experience, energy and commitment to our mission and is a person of exceptional skills, both personally and professionally,” said Yolo Farm to Fork’s president, John Mott-Smith. “With a passion for farm-to-fork programs, she is perfectly suited to guide our organization’s continued growth and development.”

Having served in senior positions with large and small organizations based in the United States and abroad, Harrison’s expertise encompasses food and health, education, the arts, international development and the political landscape. She has managed fiscal operations and led and directed marketing communications, organizational fundraising and development, capacity building, media and public relations, and education outreach.

“I am thrilled to combine my professional background with my passion for good food, health, education and recycling, and to be an integral part of the continued growth and implementation of Yolo Farm to Fork’s programs,” Harrison said in a news release.

Yolo Farm to Fork has been providing farm and garden-based education, increasing local farm-fresh foods in school meals, and reducing sold waste through recycling and composting with the flagship and nationally recognized Davis Farm to School program for 13 years. The organization also recently initiated Kids Dig It garden-learning programs in Woodland schools.

“Over the years we have made enormous strides developing grants that have primarily supported Davis schools,” Mott-Smith said. “We have expanded our mission and are launching farm-to-fork-related initiatives throughout the county, as well as sustaining our current programs.

“Our leadership now represents many of the communities in Yolo County, including Davis, Woodland, West Sacramento, Winters, Capay and Clarksburg. We are confident in Beth’s ability to lead our growth at such an exciting time.”

In 2014, Yolo Farm to Fork will continue its landmark programs and present the fifth annual Tour de Cluck in May and the 10th annual Village Feast in August. To begin the new year, the organization is launching three new, groundbreaking initiatives: Harper Harvest, Taste Our Garden and Futures.

For the Harper Harvest project, broccoli and lettuce being grown at Harper Junior High on East Covell Boulevard in Davis will be served in Davis school lunches. School garden programs will be reimbursed for the 2,400 broccoli plants that will be harvested in February by volunteers.

The Taste Our Garden initiative, sponsored exclusively by Sutter Davis Hospital, will provide 10 grants to schools, with the highest priority being those where 50 percent or more students eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

The Futures program, supported by Orchard Hill Family Fund, will fund six schools to expand edible garden programs that will include a curriculum coach to help garden coordinators integrate garden learning activities into classroom instruction.

“I am honored to be selected as Yolo Farm to Fork’s executive director, especially at this defining moment in the organization’s history,” Harrison said. “I have seen the deep personal commitment that these dedicated professionals and volunteers have to Yolo Farm to Fork’s compelling mission and I share their profound sense of purpose.

“We are geared up and ready for significant expansion in 2014 and in the years to come.”

For more information, visit


Farmers market returns to Woodland Healthcare (May 28)

The Woodland Farmers Market returns to the lawn of Woodland Healthcare’s Cancer and Neurosciences Center, 515 Fairchild Court, from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays, beginning next week. The market, which continues every Tuesday through Aug. 26, is made possible by a donation from the John and Eunice Davidson Fund.

A Saturday farmers market takes place at Heritage Plaza, Second and Main streets in downtown Woodland.

Locally grown fruits and vegetables will be available for purchase at each market. The market accepts WIC coupons and Cal Fresh EBT cards, plus debit and credit cards as well as cash.

For information, contact Mora at 530-666-2626 or visit


Sutter farmers market (May 14, 2013)

The Sutter Davis Hospital Farmers Market will reopen Thursday and will continue from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 29, at the hospital’s entrance at 2000 Sutter Place in West Davis.

Opening-day festivities include cooking demonstrations and tastings, face time with Dinger and Sacramento River Cats players (bring your cameras), giveaways, plus a market filled with farm-fresh produce, local honey, baked goods, flowers, plants and garden starts.

The hospital’s market accepts EBT cards, WIC and senior coupons. Shoppers with no cash in hand also can purchase market scrip using debit or credit cards.




How to get and keep women’s attention and support

June 11, 2014 |

Enclosed is an op-ed on the Women’s Equality Treaty. The op-ed is written by Terry O’Neill, President of the National Organization for Women and Don Kraus, CEO of the Citizens for Global Solutions. Please let us know if you are interested in using the op-ed. Photos of the authors are available and credit to American Forum is appreciated.
Denice Zeck
American Forum

How to Get and Keep Women’s Attention and Support

By Terry O’Neill and Don Kraus

There is a lot of talk these days about the importance of the women’s vote for the 2014 elections. Democrats and Republicans alike are courting women voters — Republicans are working as hard as they can to shed their anti-woman image stemming from the 2012 election cycle, while Democrats are working equally hard to shine as the party that fully supports women’s equality.

President Obama is in full courtship mode, speaking out on issues like the gender wage gap, workplace discrimination and sexual assault on college campuses. As well, perhaps, he should: he arguably owes his 2008 and 2012 wins to women voters, and neglecting them may have cost Democrats the House in 2010. Numerous polls show overwhelming support for the Treaty especially among young women and men.

But with control of Congress again at stake, the president should do something bolder to get women voters’ attention. One possibility is to call on the Senate to ratify the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, or the Women’s Equality Treaty.

The Women’s Equality Treaty is a landmark international agreement on fundamental human rights and equality for women everywhere. The United States helped draft the pact in the 1970s and signed it in 1981, but remains one of only seven countries that have not ratified it–along with Iran, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, and the two small Pacific Island nations of Palau and Tonga. These are embarrassing bedfellows.

The United States has a long history of leading the global drive for women’s rights. Eleanor Roosevelt helped ensure that the 1948 Universal Declaration on Human Rights included provisions on gender equality. The State Department, especially under former Secretary Hillary Clinton, worked to empower women in development, economics, post-conflict resolution and more.

But it hasn’t been enough. One in every three of the world’s women has suffered violent assault at some point in her life, and women worldwide are denied equal rights to education, health care, work, legal status, and more.

Even in the United States, problems like domestic violence, sexual assault, and workplace discrimination disproportionately plague women. Ratifying this agreement will not fix these or any other inequalities by itself, but it will give women’s rights advocates another tool to use in pressing legislators and employers to fix them, using our usual democratic processes.

And because we have not joined 187 other countries in ratifying the Women’s Equality Treaty, America is blocked from many conversations about women’s rights around the world.

The UN’s committee on the Women’s Equality Treaty, for example, oversees treaty implementation, issuing nonbinding recommendations for action toward gender equality. But committee members can only come from countries that are parties to the treaty. This means we cannot contribute our wide experience or our otherwise strong UN presence to promoting the rights of women.

Until we ratify this agreement, we can’t use all the tools available to combat violence and discrimination based on gender. And the treaty is just that – a tool. Some argue that ratification would threaten U.S. sovereignty, but that’s a red herring – the United States has ratified similar treaties under presidents of both parties with no such problem.

The real problem is that some senators flat-out oppose equal rights for women, and President Obama could galvanize women voters by saying so. In an election year, a ratification campaign would ignite instant controversy and excitement. But it might also generate bipartisan support in the Senate, where two-thirds of those present and voting would be needed for ratification.

As the president is routinely pointing out these days, U.S. women still are only paid an average of 77 cents for every dollar paid to a man, and they make up only 19 percent of members of Congress. We believe that voters deserve a clear opportunity to know which of their senators truly are willing to make women’s equality a priority.

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot by the Taliban for defending girls’ education, said, “Some people only ask others to do something. I believe that, why should I wait for someone else? Why don’t I take a step and move forward?” Calling for Senate ratification of the Women’s Equality Treaty would be that step for President Obama.

Terry O’Neill, President , National Organization for Women and Don Kraus, CEO, Citizens for Global Solutions.



Special to The Enterprise

Gen Events MASTER

August 16, 2012 |

Monday, June 23
The city of Davis’s summer teen drop-in program, The Vault, opens for business at 3:30 p.m. and runs through Friday, Aug. 15. The program, at King High School, 635 B St., will be open Monday through Thursday from 3:30 to 8 p.m. and Fridays from 3:30 to 9 p.m. Youths in grades 7-12 are invited to come hang out with friends, play video games, board games, air hockey, foosball and outdoor activities. Throughout the summer, there also will be sports tournaments, cooking projects, crafts and water games. The cost is $2 per day or $30 for an all-summer pass. For more information, call 530-757-5626.

Youths in grades 7-12 are invited to participate in the Davis Police Youth Academy Camp. The camp takes place Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, from June 23 to July 3. The cost is $135 and spaces are limited. Participants will have an active role in learning about crime scene investigations, SWAT teams, narcotics and gang intervention, the importance of physical conditioning and much more. Parents are required to attend the academy information night on Monday, June 2, at 6 p.m. at the Davis Police Department, 2600 Fifth St. Contact Michele Sharitz at 530-747-5411 or email for more information.

Friday, July 18

Children ages of 1-12 are invited to try out gymnastics at the Civic Center Gym from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Open Gym is also an  opportunity for gymnastics and dance students to make up a missed class. Children ages 1-4 will need to have a parent or guardian supervise them on the gym floor. There is a $5 fee for all participants (unless the participant is currently enrolled in a session and is using open Gym as a make-up class). For more information, call 530-757-5626.

Friday, Aug. 22

Children ages of 1-12 are invited to try out gymnastics at the Civic Center Gym from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Open Gym is also an  opportunity for gymnastics and dance students to make up a missed class. Children ages 1-4 will need to have a parent or guardian supervise them on the gym floor. There is a $5 fee for all participants (unless the participant is currently enrolled in a session and is using open Gym as a make-up class). For more information, call 530-757-5626.

Friday, Aug. 29

Junior high students are invited to a “Back to School” dance from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at the Veterans’ Memorial Center, 203 E. 14th St. The dance is for all students entering grades 7-9. Tickets are $8 and will go on sale two weeks before the dance at the Community Services Department, 600 A St., Suite C. A liability waiver must be in hand or on file for students to enter. For more information, call 530-757-5626.



Anne Ternus-Bellamy

June 9, 2014 |


[Editor's note: A video about related bean-breeding research at UC Davis is available at: .]

A newly reported genome sequence for the common bean — which includes a number of varieties that together rank as the world’s 10th most widely grown food crop — has been released by a research team including a UC Davis plant scientist. The results shed light on nitrogen fixation, how beans were domesticated and disease resistance.

The sequencing effort is key to helping boost production of this vitally important global food source, improving competitive production of the $1.2 billion U.S. crop and better understanding the genetic makeup of the broader group of related legume plants.

“The availability of this new whole-genome sequence for beans is already paying off,” said Professor Paul Gepts, a UC Davis plant scientist and co-author on the new sequencing study.

Gepts noted that the new sequence is already being used to confirm many of the findings made earlier by his UC Davis research group, including identification of the common bean’s two points of origin and domestication — one in the Andes and the other in the Mesoamerican area of Central America.

Gepts leads the UC Davis bean-breeding program, with responsibility for producing new varieties of common beans, as well as lima and garbanzo beans.

The new whole-genome sequencing is also helping to identify genetic “markers” that can be used to speed up breeding of new bean varieties in the United States, East Africa and other countries, Gepts said.

The nitrogen connection

The common bean, Phaseolus vulgaris, includes kidney, navy, string and pinto beans. All of these well-known bean varieties share with the closely related soy bean the highly valued ability to form symbiotic relationships with “nitrogen-fixing” bacteria in the soil.

Working together, the plants and bacteria convert nitrogen in the atmosphere into ammonia — which includes nitrogen in a form that enriches the soil and feeds crops. Nitrogen-fixing crop plants can actually reduce or eliminate the need for farmers to apply expensive fertilizers.

One of the goals of the sequencing project was to better understand the genetic basis for how such symbiotic relationships between nitrogen-fixing plants and bacteria are formed and sustained. This will be critically important for increasing crop yields for both fuel and food production.

The new sequencing identified a handful of genes involved with moving nitrogen around, which could be helpful to farmers who intercrop beans with other crops that don’t fix nitrogen.

Sequencing and bean ancestry

The common bean is thought to have originated in Mexico more than 100,000 years ago, but — as the Gepts group earlier discovered — was domesticated separately at two different geographic locations in Mesoamerica and the southern Andes.

“This finding makes the common bean an unusually interesting experimental system because the domestication process has been replicated in this crop,” Gepts said.

The sequencing team compared gene sequences from pooled populations of plants representing these two regions and found that only a small fraction of the genes are shared between common bean species from the two locations. This supports the earlier finding that the common bean was domesticated in two separate events, one at each location, but distinct genes were involved in each event.

Other important findings

The researchers also discovered:

* dense clusters of genes related to disease resistance within the common bean’s chromosomes;
* certain genes that are shared by both the common bean and the soybean, its most economically important relative; and
* evidence that the common bean’s genome evolved more rapidly than did the soybean genome, after the two species parted ways on the evolutionary pathway nearly 20 million years ago.

The project was led by researchers at the University of Georgia, U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute, Hudson Alpha Institute for Biotechnology and North Dakota State University. Findings from the study are reported this week online in the journal Nature Genetics.

Funding for the genome sequencing study was provided by the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

June 07, 2014 |



Elizabeth Case

The Art of Being Human- Shambhala Training Offered in Davis 8/9

June 06, 2014 |

Contact: Leslie Gossett

For immediate release:

The Art of Being Human Weekend Training Offered at Davis Shambhala Center

The first class in a series of trainings in the Shambhala Buddhist tradition will be offered at the Davis Shambhala Center August 9th and 10th.

Based on ancient teachings that were brought to the West by Tibetan Buddhist meditation master Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Shambhala Training weekends offer a way of living in the world with confidence, genuineness and creative expression based on the inherent wisdom that exists in every person. Attendees receive clear and precise methods for uplifting their personal experience and relationships with others.

Taking time to relate to our confusion, suffering, and struggle, we begin to realize our potential as genuine and compassionate human beings.

This program includes meditation instruction with periods of sitting and walking practice, formal talks, collaborative group discussions and individual meetings with a meditation instructor.

Saturday August 9th, 8:30 am until 5:30 pm
Sunday August 10th, 8:30 am until 5 pm

Cost: $150 Suggested Donation

Davis Shambhala Meditation Center
133 D St, Ste #H Davis, CA 95616

Details here:




Enterprise staff

FD: Fit Food: For Father’s Day, prosciutto poppers recipe

June 06, 2014 |

By Sara Moulton
What to do on Father’s Day when it’s time to eat and you want to serve something manly and filling? Other than steak, that is. Here’s a nominee that re-engineers a classic sports bar appetizer — jalapeño poppers.
Standard jalapeño poppers are thumb-sized hot peppers stuffed with cream cheese and cheddar cheese, then breaded and deep-fried. Yummy, but most home cooks aren’t too excited for the mess of deep-frying.
That’s why there also is a baked version — half a jalapeño stuffed with cheese and wrapped in bacon. Both types are delicious, but neither is all that healthy. After all, we want to keep Dad around for a while.
So my version delivers guy’s-guy gratification without overdoing it.
From a culinary point of view, jalapeño poppers make complete sense. Nothing tames a chile’s heat like dairy. That’s why so many cultures serve their fiery entrées with dairy as a side dish. The Mexicans team up spicy tortillas with crema. The Indians serve hot curries with yogurt-based raita. And that’s why cheese is right at home in a jalapeño popper.
But it doesn’t have to be high-fat cheese. The fresh goat cheese in this recipe delivers the required creaminess, while a very modest amount of Parmigiano-Reggiano delivers the required flavor.
I brightened up the filling with scallions and lemon zest, then wrapped the stuffed jalapeño in prosciutto, my substitute for bacon. Though it has a lot less fat than bacon, prosciutto boasts big pork flavor. And when it’s baked, as it is here, it’s nice and crispy, which eliminates the need to coat the pepper with breadcrumbs.
A couple of tips for preparing the jalapeños. First, be sure to wear rubber gloves when you’re halving and gutting the peppers. No matter how macho you’re feeling, you don’t want those capsaicin oils burning your hands. Also, use a grapefruit spoon, if you have one, to remove the pepper’s innards — its ribs and seeds — which are the hottest parts of a chile.
Then serve it to the big guy with pride. He’ll never notice that many of its typical ingredients have gone AWOL.
Baked Prosciutto-Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers
Start to finish: 45 minutes (30 minutes active).
Servings: 6
4 ounces fresh goat cheese
1 ounce grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
¼ cup finely chopped scallion greens
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
Page 2 of 3 Jun 05, 2014 11:06:05AM MDT
6 jalapeño peppers
3 ounces (12 slices) prosciutto
Heat the oven to 450 F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, then coat it with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, combine the goat cheese, Parmigiano-Reggiano, scallion greens and lemon zest.
Halve the jalapeños lengthwise and carefully remove the ribs and seeds (wear rubber gloves if necessary
to protect your hands). Stuff each half with the cheese mixture, being sure to use all of the cheese
Wrap 1 slice of prosciutto around each stuffed jalapeño half, overlapping the ends of the prosciutto on the
bottom of the jalapeño. Arrange the poppers on the prepared baking sheet, then bake on the oven’s
center rack until the prosciutto is slightly crispy, about 15 minutes.
Nutrition information per serving: 110 calories; 60 calories from fat (55 percent of total calories); 7
g fat (4 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 25 mg cholesterol; 2 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 10 g
protein; 540 mg sodium.



The Associated Press

Prosciutto popper photo

June 06, 2014 |

Baked prosciutto-wrapped jalapeño poppers use fresh goat cheese for the required creaminess, while a very modest amount of Parmigiano-Reggiano delivers flavor. (Matthew Mead, The Associated Press)



The Associated Press

elias 6/17 no embargo Kashkari brings GOP back from brink

June 05, 2014 |




No candidate campaigned harder this spring that Neel Kashkari, the former federal Treasury Department official and ex-Goldman Sachs executive who just become the first Asian-American ever nominated to for governor of California.

He was someplace every day. His campaign issued a seemingly non-stop barrage of press releases. He willingly met with political reporters, who took him seriously even when he was at 2 percent in the polls.

Kashkari also won the endorsements of every prominent Republican who took sides in this month’s (Editors: say “this week’s” here if using this column before Sunday) primary election. These included ex-Gov. Pete Wilson, former presidential nominee Mitt Romney (now a La Jolla resident), possible GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush and Rep. Darrell Issa of northern San Diego County, chairman of the House Governmental Oversight Committee. Ex-President George W. Bush made fund-raising calls for him. There are no bigger GOP guns.

But Kashkari’s campaign was so cash-starved that during the month before the vote, the candidate who once said he couldn’t fund his own campaign because his net worth was “only” about $5 million felt he had to put up $2 million of his own cash (by his reckoning, about 40 percent of all his resources).

This was still barely enough to put Kashkari into the November runoff election, beating out primary opponent Tim Donnelly, an assemblyman from the High Desert town of Twin Peaks best known for attempting to carry a handgun onto a Southwest Airlines flight at Ontario International Airport two years ago. Before that, the Tea Party favorite’s main claim to fame was being a co-founder of the Minutemen group battling illegal immigration. Imagine what that might have done to the Latino vote.

Donnelly’s campaign manager, Jennifer Kerns, quit in mid-March, amid reports the candidate consistently refused to take her advice. He compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler and groundlessly accused Kashkari of promoting Islamic Sharia law. Yet, somehow, Donnelly almost managed to make the runoff, primarily because much of the Republican Party’s California base believed he was the only purely anti-government candidate available.

Kashkari’s win meant that the Republican establishment beat back the grass roots GOP right this spring. In a contest that drew very few Democratic voters, Kashkari’s last-minute spending inspired just enough moderate Republican voters to back him. Many apparently feared having Donnelly top their ticket would drag down dozens of other Republicans in swing districts, while Kashkari might be a neutral factor.

As of early May, just over two weeks before the first absentee ballots went to voters, Kashkari had barely run any commercials. So he was undefined to most voters before his last-week ad campaign, even as Donnelly tried to tag him a purely establishment hack.

But at least Kashkari is a real candidate. While Donnelly railed vaguely against big government, Kashkari issued detailed position papers on job creation and education.

Kashkari’s primary win over Donnelly at least indicates the GOP does not have a total death wish, as it avoided nominating a candidate who could alienate even more voters than the California GOP already has. But in a very lightly-voted election, with Democrats having little at stake in most places, Brown still managed to win a large majority over both Republicans combined.

It’s possible Kashkari will make inroads into that cushion by the fall, for he’s promised that if elected, he will frequently compromise with Democrats who dominate the Legislature.

The vote also might indicate GOP feelings against illegal immigration have eased a bit, as the party nominated the son of immigrants while rejecting a leader of the vigilante-like Minutemen.

The bottom line is that after flirting with a potentially deep electoral disaster, just enough GOP voters realized that their party would be a dead duck on many levels if it sent Donnelly against Brown, whose job approval ratings in polls this spring were well over 50 percent.

All of which probably means Brown, sitting on a campaign war chest of more than $21 million, will still have a clear path this fall, but the GOP likely will at least avoid a Democratic clean sweep of every competitive race in the state, which Donnelly could have made a distinct possibility.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough: The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



YOLO notes (May 2014)

May 08, 2014 |


“Flexibetical” listing…All As together, Bs together, etc.

Cover photos: main art should be Yolo County Fair, with a fireworks photo, pumpkin patch and bikes

USE “Courtesy photo” for all the shots from non-Enterprise photographers

Downtown trick or treat
Earthquake festival
Public pools
Stroll through history
Yolo county fair
Movies in the Park
fun runs to include turkey trot write-up (from first edition)
check festivals
Impossible Acres pumpkin patch (from first edition)

Davis Double Century
Ride 200 miles in one day through Yolo, Napa, and Lake counties on the most popular and one of the best supported double centuries in California. Always the 3rd Saturday in May.

Whole Earth
Scottish Games
Capay Almond Festival, Black history Day in Capay,
Pence Gallery Garden Tour
Picnic Day

Misc notes about 2014 #1
Picnic Day needs to be its own entry
Grand Fondo and Double Century should be in bike events

Misc notes about 2014#2
Add Dock Store to Sudwerk
Add Third Space events/activities — include Art Theater of Davis

(from Debbie)
This would be good to hold on to for a future YOLO magazine piece (if you wanted something longish) or Welcome. It’s a great wrap-up of local agricultural stuff. It’s running as a guest opinion piece tomorrow.

By Alan Humason
When it comes to Sacramento’s Farm to Fork initiative, Yolo County is all in. How could it be otherwise?

Yolo County is the farm to Sacramento’s fork. This fact goes well beyond supplying produce and proteins to Sacramento restaurants. Here’s how:

Yolo County is one of the most diverse farming regions in the nation, producing several hundred commodities including tomatoes, wine grapes, rice, a variety of grains, almonds and walnuts, olives, honey and, of course, our signature sunflowers. In addition, Yolo County is one of the nation’s leaders in the highly technical world of seed research and development.

Yolo County is the home of leading nonprofits such as the Center for Land Based Learning — dedicated to creating the next generation of farmers through its California Farm Academy — and Yolo Farm to Fork — a leader in expanding local school nutrition and education programs.

Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor’s visionary Farm to Every Fork initiative — embracing Yolo Food Connect, Yolo County Farm Bureau and other progressive groups — means to address food security, distribution and nutrition issues in myriad ways.

We have wonderful farmers markets in Woodland, West Sacramento and most famously in Davis.

Yolo County is home of Farm Fresh To You (by Capay Organic), perhaps the largest Community Supported Agriculture service in Northern California; they even have a presence in San Francisco’s Ferry Building, the Taj Mahal of Bay Area markets.

In fact, there are several CSA providers based in Yolo County. You can find them via Harvest Hub Yolo, an online resource created by Yolo County Agricultural Commissioner John Young, connecting numerous farm producers to the general public. Another unusual outlet for locally grown produce from small family farms is the online Capay Valley Farm Shop.

Yolo County isn’t “small potatoes.” We help to feed the world, exporting to 95 countries from Afghanistan to Yemen.

Our county is home to three dozen olive oil producers, many of them award winners, such as Bondolio in Winters, gold medal winner at the 2013 New York International Olive Oil Competition. We can also lay claim to the new, state-of-the-art olive mill press owned and operated by Séka Hills in Brooks.

On the dining scene, Yolo County has its share of farm-to-fork restaurants: Kitchen428 in Woodland, Seasons and Monticello Seasonal Cuisine in Davis, and The Eatery in West Sacramento, just to name a few.

Yolo County wines are undeniably outstanding; you can find them in Clarksburg, Davis, Winters and the Capay Valley. Several have been picked for the Legends of Wine event at the state Capitol. What’s more, the dessert course at the Tower Bridge dinner will feature Yolo County wines exclusively.

Yolo County farms and vineyards host tours and events throughout the year in our gorgeous countryside. In just this October, you can enjoy the Hoes Down Harvest Festival at Fully Belly Farm, the Palate Project at UC Davis, Fresh Press Weekend — a Roots to Wine event — throughout the county and the annual Taste of Capay.

We claim UC Davis and the Robert Mondavi Institute for Food and Wine Science. Enough said.

Yolo Arts in Woodland sponsors an innovative program called the Art & Ag Project, connecting artists, farmers and the community, stressing the importance of preserving farmlands and the visual arts, culminating in a top-flight art show this fall. This program is so good, it has been recognized by the National Endowment for the Arts.

I could go on, but you get the idea. You can find out more when you visit the Yolo County booth at the Farm-to-Fork Festival on Saturday in Sacramento.

But to really taste, experience and savor the farm of the farm-to-fork movement, come to Yolo County; you’ll love it here.

— Alan Humason is executive director of the Yolo County Visitors Bureau.



elias 6/10 no embargo new numbers on fracking debate

May 24, 2014 |




There’s a huge political implication in the big difference between 13.7 billion barrels of oil and 600 million.

Similarly, there’s meaning in the gigantic difference between 15 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and 6.4 billion (the average California household uses about two to three cubic feet of natural gas per day).

Taken together, it’s the difference between fueling the entire United States for several years and fueling it for only about one month.

Those are the differences between the amount of oil and gas the federal Energy Department in 2011 estimated lies trapped in the rocks of California’s Monterey Shale geological formation and what it now says can actually be recovered using current technology at today’s prices.

The gigantic Arabian- or Oklahoma-style resources first said to be available from the Monterey Shale, which stretches south from San Benito County along the western side of the San Joaquin Valley all the way into Southern California, gave rise to a strong drive for massive hydraulic fracturing. Better known as fracking, this technique sees many thousands of gallons of water and acid injected under high pressure deep into the ground, where it blasts apart shale rocks holding oil and gas deposits.

The 2011 Energy Department estimates, repeated in 2012 and 2013, gave rise to a boom mentality and changed the political balance of environmentalism and job creation in this state.

Gov. Jerry Brown, who consistently champions measures fighting climate change, refused to back an outright ban or moratorium on fracking in California despite concerns over both production of greenhouse gases and possible pollution of ever-more-vital ground water aquifers.

Onefactor:A USC study contended that full-blown fracking of the Monterey Shale would spur 2.8 million new California jobs in what seemed like it could become the biggest boom here since the Gold Rush era.

The author of that study has told reporters the reduction of about 95 percent in official estimates of what can be readily extracted from the Monterey Shale would similarly cut his job-creation forecast.

Through its information agency, the Energy Department explains the massive cut in its expectations for the Monterey Shale by saying rocks there are warped more than in other heavily-fracked areas like Ohio, North Dakota and Pennsylvania. Earthquakes did this. The convolutions they produced in subterranean rocks would make it far harder to extract oil by any current method than previously thought, the EIA said.

Of course, any estimate that can change by 95 percent in one direction seemingly overnight and for reasons that were long known prior to the initial estimate is not likely to remain stable long. Nor can it be considered highly reliable.

So the oil industry says it wsill keep driving for fracking, trusting that oil company scientists will devise ways to tap resources the firms have lately rushed to control.

The politics of all this are still murky. With the latest estimate of Monterey Shale resources now pretty similar to what’s known to exist in untapped offshore California oilfields, logic says a fracking moratorium would cost no more jobs than the current moratorium on new offshore oil drilling.

In short, environmentalists may argue that a moratorium – embodied in a bill now active in the Legislature – makes as much sense in one place as the other. And Brown, a decades-long supporter of the coastal oil moratorium, might just go along since for the moment, the bottom has fallen out of fracking job-creation forecasts.

So far, Brown has said nothing, and since he’s surely aware any fluctuating estimate can change right back to where it was before, he’s not likely to anytime soon. Former U.S. Treasury official Neel Kashkari, fighting to be Brown’s Republican opponent this fall, has for months made all-out fracking a centerpiece of his economic platform and has yet to change his stance.

Even so, the drive for fracking has definitely been changed. For the ratio of fracking risks to benefits has now shifted radically – at least for the next year or so – nor are the stakes as high as they were before the late May day when the Energy Department radically changed its tune.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



May 21, 2014 |


Newly published research involving a 12-year study of dengue infections in Iquitos, Peru, helps explain why interventions to prevent the mosquito-borne disease are frequently unsuccessful.

The research, headed by professor Thomas Scott of the UC Davis department of entomology and mematology, was published Monday 19 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Defining variation in the risk of dengue transmission has been a roadblock to understanding disease dynamics and designing more realistic and effective disease prevention programs,” Scott said.

“This study is an important step toward overcoming that obstacle,” Scott said. “We hope our results will help reduce the burden of this increasingly devastating disease.”

Dengue, a mosquito-borne virus infecting nearly 400 million people a year, is difficult to model not only because the majority of all infections are hidden, but also because there are four distinct serotypes, or versions, of dengue, each having unique characteristics, said lead author Robert Reiner, a Research and Policy for Infectious Disease Dynamics (RAPIDD) postdoctoral fellow in Scott’s Mosquito Research Laboratory.

“Typically, most infections go unnoticed and as such, measuring and modeling transmission intensity is problematic,” Reiner said.

Dengue virus is transmitted by Aedes aegypti, a mosquito that bites during the daytime as people move about in their daily routines.

Over the 12-year period, from 1999 to 2010, the researchers periodically tested individuals in Iquitos for dengue virus infections, even if they never felt sick.

“We created a new modeling approach that was able to leverage the resulting 38,416 blood samples to create time-varying, serotype-specific estimates of transmission intensity, which we measured as the force of infection, or the rate at which susceptible individuals became infected,” Reiner said.

“By accurately estimating the force of infection within and between years, we were able to demonstrate that current control strategies that are typically based on one-time estimates of transmission intensity are underestimating the effort needed to eliminate this disease. This may help explain why most interventions are not successful,” he said.

Reiner said that the team’s work suggests that certain serotypes can infect up to 33 percent of the susceptible population in a single year and that 79 percent of the population of Iquitos would need to be protected from any further infection to eliminate transmission. Further, he said that the researchers’ estimates form a detailed description of virus-transmission dynamics that provides a basis for understanding the long-term persistence of dengue and for improving disease prevention programs.

“The marked variation in transmission intensity that we detected indicates that intervention targets based on one-time estimates of the force of infection could underestimate the level of effort needed to prevent disease,” the authors wrote in their abstract. “Our description of dengue virus transmission dynamics is unprecedented in detail, providing a basis for understanding the persistence of this rapidly emerging pathogen and improving disease prevention programs.”

Scott’s dengue research program recently received two new research grants totaling nearly $10 million to study the illness. The grants, $7.5 million from the National Institutes of Health and $2.2 million from Notre Dame University, will help fund the program for the next five years, said Scott, director of the Mosquito Research Program and the principal investigator of the dengue research program.

“There is no vaccine nor drug that is effective against this virus,” said Scott, who has studied dengue for more than 25 years and is recognized as the leading expert in the ecology and epidemiology of the disease.

While vaccines are under development, it is not clear how they can be best applied when they are available, including in combination with other interventions like mosquito control, Scott said.

“New disease-prevention tools, in addition to vaccines and an improved understanding of virus transmission dynamics, which will enhance surveillance and epidemic response, are needed to reduce the global burden of dengue,” he said.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

Elias 6/6 two California districts

May 20, 2014 |



With memories of last fall’s federal government shutdown and several national debt default crises already faded from the public mind, national Democrats no longer appear to believe they have a realistic chance of retaking control of the House of Representatives from the Republicans who wrested it away from them unexpectedly almost four years ago.

But they might still gain some ground in a few places. Democrats harbor that hope primarily because every poll shows most Americans – even about half those who call themselves Republicans – assign primary blame for government gridlock to the GOP.

To take control and make San Francisco’s Nancy Pelosi speaker again, Democrats would need to win back 17 seats now held by Republicans. That’s probably not going to happen. Because of gerrymandering in many states, Democrats have no chance in the vast majority of the 235 districts now held by the GOP.

But they still could improve their numbers. Democrats have identified 24 so-called swing seats where Republicans won close elections last year, and two of their most prominent pollsters say they are ahead in 17 of those. If they won all those – not likely – and hung onto every seat they now hold, they could rid themselves of Speaker John Boehner. Not realistic.

Every Democratic scenario for making progress in the House, though, requires wins in two of the three California districts among those 24 swing seats.

In one of those three, Republican David Valadao’s 21st District, Democrats don’t have much realistic hope. Even though voter registration is about even in that Visalia-centered district, Valadao is favored by a 50-40 percent margin over just about any Democrat, say the Democrats’ own surveys.

But Democrats are in much better shape in the district now held by retiring Republican Gary Miller and on Jeff Denham’s Central Valley turf.

In Miller’s 31st district, covering much of San Bernardino County, four Democrats and a couple of Republicans are vying for runoff election slots. Before Miller pulled out, the Public Policy Polling firm had him trailing 51-39 percent when voters were asked to compare him with just about any Democrat.

Democrats have a 41-34 percent voter registration edge in the district, with another 20 percent giving no party preference (Democrats have lately won majorities among these undeclared voters in most places). Miller had the good fortune to face a fellow Republican in his last election, after he and state Sen. Bob Huff topped a fractured list of Democrats in the 2012 primary.

There’s a good chance one Republican could make the runoff in this district, but the polling numbers suggest it is the Democrats’ to lose. Most likely, the leading Democrat will be either Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar, activist Eloise Gomez Reyes or former Congressman Joe Baca. Aguilar has the backing of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and endorsements from more than a dozen Southern California Democratic members of Congress, including most of those from neighboring districts. Gomez draws a slew of endorsements from the likes of Democratic Congress members Xavier Becerra and Raul Grijalva, the National Women’s Political Caucus and several big labor unions.

Denham, whose 10th District encompasses Modesto, Manteca and Tracy, beat Democrat Jose Hernandez, a former astronaut, by 53-47 percent in 2012, a margin of about 11,000 votes out of 209,000 cast. The Public Policy Polling survey currently shows 37 percent of district voters approve his performance in office, even with the 37 percent who disapprove. He trailed by four percentage points when the poll asked voters whether they’d vote for Denham or a Democrat, without naming any possible opponent.

Once the opposition acquires a name and face, of course, everything can change in any political race. So even though Democrats look in good shape in those districts, primary election results deciding the candidate finalists will speak loudly about the eventual outcomes.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough: The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



Elias 6/3 fundraising blackout

May 20, 2014 |



With polls showing Californians distrust their state government more than citizens of almost any other state, it’s high time legislators at least began taking small steps toward earning back some of the public faith they have squandered.

One way to start might be to adopt an idea advanced this spring by Democratic state Sen. Alex Padilla of Los Angeles, now a candidate to become secretary of state, California’s chief elections officer.

Even before the spring corruption indictments of fellow Democratic Sens. Ron Calderon of Montebello and Leland Yee of San Francisco, Padilla realized that one of the least seemly things lawmakers now do is raise campaign dollars right when they are deciding how to vote on important bills.

Even for the rare senator or Assembly member strong enough to heed the half-century-old advice of former Assembly Speaker Jesse Unruh (“If you can’t drink their booze, (sleep with) their women, eat their food and then vote against them, you don’t belong in politics.”), decision-time fund-raising still looks bad and erodes public trust.

Especially when a legislator then votes precisely the way big-money special interest donors want. It’s often a “which came first, the chicken or the egg” question when trying to determine whether lawmakers attract special interest support because of their own voting proclivities or vote the way they do because of special interest donations. Whichever, the practice stinks and looks terrible.

So Padilla proposes to ban campaign contributions to lawmakers during the final 100 days of each legislative session. That’s not as extreme as forbidding donations during the entire session, but the longer ban (legislative sessions run seven or eight months yearly) might be impractical. For sure, outlawing donations for entire sessions could put legislators seeking reelection at a disadvantage against challengers not subject to a ban, while leaving millionaire self-funded candidates with an even bigger advantage than they often enjoy now.

A shorter, 100-day ban is something incumbents could live with. They usually enjoy huge advantages over challengers in both fund-raising and the name-recognition that’s so important to political survival in a large state where most voters never lay eyes on a candidate.

But some of Sacramento’s most prolific fund-raisers say it wouldn’t change much if either fundraising during entire sessions or during the finishing rush were outlawed.

“It’s just rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic,” said Dan Weitzman, who gathers funds for major Democrats. “This simply front-loads fund-raising. You’d simply tell people on July 1 to mail their checks in on Sept. 1 or Sept. 15 or whenever the session ends. Everyone would know it was coming.”

Adds Democratic consultant Steve Maviglio, a onetime press secretary for ex-Gov. Gray Davis who has worked for three Assembly speakers and run many initiative campaigns, “The concept is great, but the reality is not workable. This would be nothing more than a Band-Aid at best. I favor full disclosure of all donations within 24 hours instead; then everyone will know who’s getting what from whom.”

But past history indicates that even if donations were posted immediately, very few voters would check on them.

Still, it’s clear the public wants some kind of action to clean things up in Sacramento, where almost 3 million Californians today languish with no Senate representation at all because their convicted or indicted representatives are suspended while trying to fight off corruption and perjury charges against them.

So why not start with a small step like Padilla’s proposal? The one thing it would do is keep legislators from staging fund-raising events during the times they cast their most important votes. It is conceivable that not having to confront their big donors might make it a little easier for them to get back to basics, and actually vote their consciences or their constituents’ best interests.

Doesn’t sound like much, but it could at least lend a little more of the appearance of propriety to a polluted political environment. That’s better than doing no cleanup at all, which is what has happened so far amid all the pious talk of regaining public confidence.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough, The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For more Elias columns, visit



Afraid to camp? Nothing to fear but fear itself (Hold for Tanya)

May 16, 2014 |

By Solvej Schou

Growing up in Los Angeles, I loved camping.

My family and I regularly escaped the city’s concrete sprawl for California’s wilder edges, driving deep into the desert or high up into the mountains. We’d set up a tent and plunk down sleeping bags, each trip a dusty, if slightly smelly, adventure.

Then something changed. As an adult, I stopped camping. Though still an avid nature-lover and hiker, I didn’t want to abandon the modern perks of home — roof, electricity, bed! — or similarly equipped hotels.

This year I decided to break that 15-year-long camping drought. I joined my stepmother, sister, aunt, uncle and Danish father, who has averaged three camping trips a year since he moved to California in 1977, on a three-day camping excursion in Pinnacles National Park, south of San Jose. The experience turned out fun, freeing and easier than I thought it would be.

Here are five things you might be worried about when it comes to camping, along with ways to cope.

Forgoing a comfy mattress for a sleeping bag may not sound appealing, but there are ways to lessen the ick. Driving to a campground versus hiking in means you can stuff your vehicle with provisions — including a tent you can stand up in for maximum comfort.

The taller the entrance to your tent, the less it affects your back. Then make sure to have a self-inflating mattress, like a Therm-a-Rest, or an air mattress you can inflate with a pump. Slip it under your sleeping bag to avoid the sleepless scenes from “The Princess and the Pea.” Another option is a collapsible camp cot.

Camping in spring and summer means using lighter rectangular sleeping bags stuffed with synthetic material. When it’s cold, go with a down-filled mummy-shaped sleeping bag that cinches around your face. I also found bringing a bedroom pillow helped. It smelled and felt like home.

These days some commercially operated campgrounds offer Internet access. But if you’re heading to wilderness-type parks, depending on location, you may not even have cellphone service.

You can always bring an external battery pack and angrily play Candy Crush for hours, but that really defeats the purpose of being outdoors. I did bring my excellent Jackery Fit portable battery pack, but only to make sure my iPhone was charged enough to take photos during hikes into Pinnacles’ winding mountain caves.

Channel the great naturalist Henry David Thoreau, and remember that the internet will still be there later. Play cards, eat, drink, breathe in fresh air, hike, build a campfire and enjoy the company of others — in person instead of online.

You love food, and so do animals, including squirrels and bears, whose sense of smell overshadows ours and who may find your fragrant dinner supplies irresistible. Just remember: They want your food, not you.

Never leave trash, toiletries, dirty dishes, food or drinks unattended. Don’t leave trash and open containers in your car or around the campsite. Look for metal lockers to store trash and food onsite. Keep your tent zipped up, and keep in mind that bugs and birds also enjoy nibbling on half-eaten peanut butter sandwiches, so don’t give them the chance.

As for ticks and mosquitoes, insect repellent works. For major bug phobias or when biting insects are thick, outdoor supply stores and websites sell inexpensive, lightweight mesh jackets that you can zip yourself into — including your hands and face if need be.

Bathrooms and electricity
You can live without electricity, a full-length mirror and private bathrooms without sacrificing hygiene or general spiffiness.

Most developed tent campgrounds you can drive to have communal bathrooms with running drinking water, sinks and showers, but check in advance. Pretend you’re at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, strap on a floppy hat and embrace a wind-swept, natural look.

Try gas- or battery-powered lanterns for preparing food and hanging out in the evening. A headlamp works well for midnight bathroom runs and as a makeshift night-light hung in a tent.

Leaving your smoothie blender home doesn’t mean you can’t have delicious food while camping.

Get a decently sized cooler that can keep your food cold for a few days before the ice needs to be changed out, and a small basin to wash dishes. Bring a propane gas-powered camp stove with one or two burners. In campgrounds with grills, you can fire-roast anything from portobello mushrooms to zucchini. At night my family and I made gooey s’mores.

“Approach camping as an adventure with possibilities of new experiences of fun, and the possibility of challenges,” my dad told me. “Camping gives you a sense of togetherness in a natural environment you’re not usually in, that you end up enjoying together.”



The Associated Press

sacramento campus draft

May 15, 2014 |

UC Davis is eying the Sacramento railyards as a possible location for a third campus housing the World Food Center and other policy and education programs.

“A lot of people have been talking to (Chancellor Linda Katehi) about the World Food Center. She is committed to having some kind of location in Sacramento,” Luanne Lawrence, associate chancellor for strategic communications, said this week.

West Sacramento also has been mentioned as a possible location for a campus, seen by the chancellor as a “bridge” between the existing health system campus in Sacramento and the core sciences in Davis, Lawrence said.

Vice Chancellor John Meyer said in a recent interview that UCD’s main objective would be to inform public policy: “If the state is a leader nationally, if the state is a leader internationally, how can we give them the data, the studies, to influence that policy?”

UCD was approached by what Lawrence characterized as civic leaders, developers, commodity groups and others with a proposal that included an artist’s rendering of a campus on the 240-acre railyards site.

The chancellor included the drawing in her state-of-the-campus address in February, showing it during a discussion of the university’s long-range planning process.

Lawrence said plans for a third campus are “amorphous.” She said a West Sacramento location and possibly a second Sacramento site have come up in discussion.

For years, the railyards have been mired in foreclosures, toxic cleanups and on-and-off development discussions as a possible site of a new arena home for the Sacramento Kings.

A variety of ideas also have been brainstormed for what, besides the World Food Center, the new campus will house, Lawrence said. ADD LINE ABOUT WHAT THE CENTER IS

Meyer said programs in population and global health are possible tenants, along with wellness and nutrition clinics and education programs for the public.

The University of California’s Sacramento center, operated by UCD along K Street, also might relocate, he said, and add “a residential experience” similar to that for UC students who take part in programs in Washington, D.C.

Meyer said the campus also might attract “major food corporations and others” looking for a West Coast home, as well as other frequent food- and health-related partners, like the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

The right place for that work is Sacramento, Lawrence said.

“It’s just the perfect place to be,” she said.

Meyer said Katehi was asking, “ ‘How do we better effect policy in areas of our strength?’ ”

“Things like the World Food Center — that’s not just, ‘How do we feed a planet with 9 billion people?’ but food safety, especially for emerging economies in Asia, and wellness — sort of this bridge between health sciences in Sacramento and the core sciences in Davis,” Meyer said.

UCD has not set a timeline for choosing a site, Lawrence said.

“By the end of the year, I feel like we’re going to have a good feeling about what we’re doing in Sacramento,” she said.

The main campus’ long-range planning process is set to get underway this quarter, with most of the public process likely to take place in the fall.

Among the standout projects being discussed are a new chemical sciences building — intended to house chemistry, chemical engineering and biochemical engineering — and a new large science building, aimed at interdisciplinary research.

Other eye-catching items that are likely to be part of the plan include replacing Toomey Field and Woody Wilson Track, at Fifth and A streets, with new housing. The track would moved to the site of the dairy complex, opening up seven or eight acres at the campus’ edge where it meets downtown.

The main campus’ current plan — akin to a city’s general plan — was approved in 2003 and was intended to guide it into the 2015-16 academic year. It included the first phase of the West Village housing project and the university’s Interstate 80 front door.

That plan imagined a campus with 30,000 students. UCD has about 33,300 students currently, including 25,800 undergraduates.

The new long-range plan may extend to the year 2025 or perhaps 2030. Much of it will be aimed at accommodating 5,000 new students, 300 faculty and 600 staff by 2020 with new classroom, lab and office space in the core of the campus being added under the 2020 growth plan.

A number of projects consistent with the current long-range plan are already in various stages of development. They include:

  • The build-out of West Village with housing for 1,000 more students, 500 single-family homes and the expansion of the Sacramento City College location;
  • Developing East Village, a 42-acre site, which the campus is in talks with the city and other partners as part of a Downtown/University Gateway District.

It’s complemented by a 45-acre strip of land on the southeast side of the university, usually called the Nishi property, which the city is taking steps to acquire, and another 11 acres owned by businesses in the Olive Drive area. The district could add both housing and space for innovative new businesses.

  • The remaking of the Howard Way entrance to campus, including a new bus terminal;
  • The renovation of the Memorial Union, including a two-story atrium and bookstore improvements.
  • Discussions about whether to renovate or replace Freeborn Hall, which is in need of seismic upgrades.
  • The creation of an “international complex” at Russell Boulevard and California Avenue with services for the growing number of international students and scholars, a new home for the University Extension, education abroad and other international programs.
  • Talks about the redevelopment of the Orchard Park housing area, with additional units being added.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

May 13, 2014 |

Following is a complete list of commencement dates, times and locations:

* May 16 — School of Law at 4 p.m. at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts; Master of Laws and Juris Doctor degrees.
* May 29 — School of Medicine at 2 p.m. at the Mondavi Center;
* June 11 — School of Education at 4 p.m. at the Mondavi Center;
* June 12 — Graduate Studies at 4 p.m. in the ARC Pavilion;
* June 13 — School of Veterinary Medicine at 10 a.m. at the Mondavi Center;
* June 13 — College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the ARC Pavilion;
* June 14 — College of Letters and Science at 9 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the ARC Pavilion;
* June 14 — Graduate School of Management at 10 a.m. at the Mondavi Center;
* June 15 — College of Biological Sciences at 9 a.m. in the ARC Pavilion; and
* June 15 — College of Engineering at 3 p.m. in the ARC Pavilion.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

elias 5/30 third party

May 14, 2014 |



California voters created tectonic changes in state politics four years ago, when they approved the “top two” primary election system that takes effect in races for statewide offices next month.

There is no longer any guarantee Democrats and Republicans will face off in November runoff elections. In fact, four years ago, primary election voters set up more than two dozen intra-party runoffs matching Democrat on Democrat or Republican on Republican in legislative and congressional contests. It could happen in more than one statewide race this year.

Every poll in 2010 showed that voters acted because they were sick of polarization and gridlock in Sacramento. They got what they wanted, says a new report from a University of Southern California institute funded primarily by ex-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Voters also may have inadvertently set up a de facto third political party in Sacramento, a moderate one, even if it’s not formally recognized by anyone. For lack of a better term, this group might be called the “Blue Dogs,” borrowing a name from a group of moderate to conservative Democrats who served in Congress in the 1990s and carefully picked and chose which liberal causes to support.

Just such a group now exists in Sacramento, and it promises to grow larger after the June primary that’s already taking place via ballots mailed out this month. The group has no formal organization, but that might come as its numbers grow.

Based on an analysis of all roll-call votes in both the state Legislature and Congress, USC political scientist Christian Grose found the average state legislator was more moderate over the last 18 months than for many years previously (

Diminished polarization of the parties in the Legislature took place against a background of ever-increasing partisanship in Congress, a phenomenon applying in both the House and Senate.

Most movement, Grose found, occurred among Democrats. This may partly be because, as noted in an investigation by former Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Gary Cohn, increasing numbers of Democratic legislators are less beholden to labor unions for their campaign money and more dependent on corporations and the state Chamber of Commerce.

Cohn found that some of these lawmakers – he named Marin County’s Marc Levine and Republican-turned-Democrat Steve Fox of Palmdale as prime examples – skipped or abstained from several key votes. Abstentions affected the fate of bills aiming to help farm workers, require economic impact reports for proposed new big box stores and require more disclosure from some health insurance companies before they raise rates.

One possible addition to the Blue Dog ranks this year might be Steve Glazer, until last year a top advisor to Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown, who later worked as a consultant to the chamber. Glazer, an Orinda city councilman, now seeks an Alameda County seat in the Assembly.

“I am trying to redefine what it means to be a Democrat,” Glazer told one reporter.

For sure, Glazer has parted company with the labor unions that support most Democratic campaigns. But that doesn’t make him any less liberal on issues from gay rights to gun control and abortion, areas of relatively little interest to business.

How many Blue Dogs get elected this fall will in large part be a product of the current primary. The more Democrat-on-Democrat races ensue, the more contests will pit union contributions against business dollars.

Their outcomes can be surprising, too, as when former Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom two years ago won in an Assembly district created by reapportionment over Democratic Assemblywoman Betsy Butler, a strong labor ally who previously represented a district that marginally overlapped the new one. Butler now seeks a vacant state Senate seat and will very likely this fall face another Democratic rival not funded by unions.

No one can be quite certain how all this will play out in the long term: A moderate wing for the most liberal state Democratic Party in the nation? A three-party system?

These are the kind of non-automatic, unpredictable developments that make voting both worthwhile and fun.

Elias is author of the current book “The Burzynski Breakthrough: The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” now available in an updated third edition. His email address is



elias 5/27 no embargo – hydrogen highway

May 14, 2014 |




Looking for a new reason to distrust a state government that won’t even expel legislators when they’ve been indicted or convicted?

Then examine $46.5 million in grants announced by the state Energy Commission in early May for building refueling stations to serve the hydrogen-powered cars due to appear on California roads as early as next year. These grants thoroughly pollute the coming hydrogen highway.

Fully 58 percent of the money – $27.5 million – will go to one company if the commission gives its final approval. Action was due May 14 (Editors: say Wednesday here if running this on or before May 20), with the commission’s agenda estimating it would need just 10 minutes to dole out the funds.

What’s wrong with that? The company getting all that cash – from vehicle license fees – is FirstElement Fuel, which has never built or managed anything. Its co-president is Dr. Tim Brown, until last Oct. 1 a senior scientist in the Advanced Power and Energy Program at UC Irvine.

While there, Brown was the principal designer of the Energy Commission’s map for placement of hydrogen stations, most to consist of pumps added into existing service stations. Under a contract with UCI, Brown also trained Energy Commission staffers on how to use the material he developed for the commission. Some of those staffers evaluated grant applications this spring.

If these obvious conflicts of interest aren’t problematic enough, there’s also the fact FirstElement filed a 900-page grant application barely four months after Brown left UCI. It included commitments from more than 20 service stations to allow FirstElement to install hydrogen pumps. Officials of competing companies say it’s unprecedented to recruit so many stations and develop a 900-page proposal in so little time.

About one week after this column revealed in early March that Brown had applied for tens of millions of grant dollars under a system he essentially designed, the Energy Commission requested a written opinion from the state Fair Political Practices Commission on whether Brown was in conflict of interest. In its 40-year history, the Energy Commission never before requested such an opinion.

That opinion emerged as a rubber-stamp document filled with legal sophistry. Example: “Dr. Brown was an employee of UC Irvine while operating under a contract with the Energy Commission. The research and education that the Energy Commission gained during that contract might have informed (his grant application), but we cannot say the contracts are the same or even that one necessarily led into the other,” the FPPC said. Translation: the state’s ethics watchdog says Brown can receive the state money because it can’t prove he drew the map to benefit himself. Even if this was possible.

Of course, the state Supreme Court in 1980 ruled that conflict of interest laws are intended “not only to strike at actual impropriety, but also to strike at the appearance of impropriety.” The FPPC cited this passage, but then paid it no heed. FPPC general counsel Zackery (cq) Morazzini refused to answer questions about the ruling, as did Brown, his attorney and Energy Commission officials.

Then there’s the fact that FirstElement’s proposal exposed the new company as something like a surrogate for the large international commercial fuel firm Air Products and Chemicals, which saw grants of its own pulled back by the Energy Commission after this column in 2012 revealed a pattern of cronyism in that year’s awards.

FirstElement’s proposal says the company is a “consortium of
partners,” with financing from Toyota Motor Sales and all equipment
and hydrogen fuel to come from Air Products, which will also install
the pumps. Executives of Air Products and Toyota for years have
attended meetings of the California Fuel Cell Partnership (annual
dues: $87,000) with Energy Commission staffers. This was part of
what led to the earlier allegations of cronyism.

So contrary to the FPPC’s convoluted opinion, the large new grants to Brown and FirstElement reek of conflict of interest and a revival of cronyism.

Which means that if the Energy Commission, as expected, gives final approval to the announced grants, Californians will have a dirty hydrogen highway and one more multi-million-dollar reason to distrust state government.

Email Thomas Elias at His book, “The Burzynski Breakthrough: The Most Promising Cancer Treatment and the Government’s Campaign to Squelch It,” is now available in a soft cover fourth edition. For ‘more Elias columns, go to



National Climate Assessment Shows Climate Change is Already Here

May 10, 2014 |

By Elisabeth Robbins

The National Climate Assessment released this week tells us that climate change is happening now. Not some future time, but now. We see examples all around us—12 inches of rain in 12 hours in Dubuque, IA, 22 inches of rain awash in the streets of Miami, 102 degrees in May in Kansas, our own record drought and shortage of irrigation water in Yolo County. While record numbers of weather records are being set each year, most of these weather extremes are still within the range of historical cycles. It’s the frequency and intensity of our weather nationwide that is not normal. The pattern of more intense weather occurring more frequently shows something new is happening. It can be seen in the hard data of current measurements, not models of what someone thinks will happen in the future.

Regardless of what is causing our freaky weather, we know what we can do to prevent it from getting much, much worse. Stop putting so much greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.

It’s not a question of whether we will act; it’s become a question of when. As a kid, I learned “a stitch in time saves nine.” Taking action now and limiting world temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius (3.8 F), the latest IPCC report estimates, would reduce global growth by only 0.06% over the next century, reducing the earth’s annual growth rate from about 2.5% down to 2.44%. But that is probably an overestimate, because the cost of action now does not include the billions gained each year from weather catastrophes that don’t happen–the crops not lost to drought, homes and businesses not lost to flood waters and rising tides, forests not lost to wildfire, etc. Not to mention lives not lost to heat stroke. Each year we delay action we increase our future costs,

A reasonable assessment of the danger of doing nothing should spur both Republicans and Democrats to action for the good of the country. All three of our elected representatives, Senators Feinstein and Boxer and Representative Garamendi , have indicated they would support a carbon tax or fee as a way to encourage Americans to use less fossil fuel. But to earn Republican support, they’ll need to agree that the fee be revenue neutral, meaning all revenue is returned to households with nothing held back to build government programs.

That compromise is a small price to pay for a big return on creating a livable environment for our children. Do we pay a little now, or a lot later?

— Elisabeth Robbins is a Woodland resident.



Special to The Enterprise

May 07, 2014 |

Four musicians from two bands that played at the original Woodstock Festival are set to headline the 44th annual Whole Earth Festival , bringing art, crafts, education, food, music and dance back to the UC Davis Quad this week.

Canned Heat will play a free show at 8 p.m. Saturday. They’ll be joined by guitarist Barry “The Fish” Melton of Country Joe and the Fish.

The student-run festival ’s opening ceremony is slated for 1 p.m. Friday. Performances and other events run until 10 p.m. Friday, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. until the closing ceremony at 5 p.m. Sunday.

Bringing to the campus Canned Heat — whose song “Going Up the Country” was No. 1 on the charts during the first Whole Earth Festival , in May 1969, and which was the unofficial theme of the Woodstock concert film — has been a labor of love for co-chair Brett Lemke.

The fifth-year anthropology major has known members of the band since 2003, when he interviewed them for the music magazine Maximum Ink.

He later met the band at the Wisconsin Blues Festival , which led to his work redesigning Canned Heat’s website, researching and editing a new edition of drummer Fito De La Parra’s book “Living The Blues. Canned Heat’s Story of Music, Drugs, Death, Sex and Survival,” and serving as tour manager from 2007 to 2009.

Melton, the anti-war musician turned Yolo County public defender turned private attorney, has been friendly with Canned Heat since the blues revival music of the 1960s. He played with members of the band as Canned Fish for a 2006 tribute album to guitarist John Fahey.

Blues aficionados Alan Wilson and Bob Hite formed Canned Heat. Wilson committed suicide in 1970; Hite died of a heart attack in 1981.

De La Parra, who has long been the band’s leader, is joined in the band’s current incarnation by two others from the Woodstock lineup, bass player Larry Taylor and guitarist Harvey Mandel, as well as by journeyman singer, guitarist and harmonica player Dale Spalding, who joined up in 2007.

In his research about the band, Lemke discovered the long list of blues musicians whose work was championed by Canned Heat’s members, including John Lee Hooker and Albert Collins.

Band members tracked down blues pioneers like Sunnyland Slim, who was driving a taxi in Chicago, and Skip James, whom they found in a hospital in Tunica, Miss., and brought them to the attention of a new generation of audiences.

“What they did was so selfless. Their dedication brings tears to my eyes,” Lemke said. “When nobody knew who these guys were, (Canned Heat) lifted them up and said, ‘These are our heroes.’ ”

Now Lemke will have a chance to introduce the band and its swirl of blues, rock and boogie sounds to students who may never have heard it before.

“Fifty years of musicianship and tireless work on the road will allow (the audience) to see a group that is so experienced and that plays so well together and that is so tight and are so happy to be playing together, 50 years later, that I can only imagine — it could be life-changing,” he said. ”I’m hoping that everybody will be absolutely amazed.”

Whole Earth started in 1969 when an art class taught by José Argüelles organized an “art happening” at UCD. After the United Nations established Earth Day in 1970, the event was renamed the Whole Earth Festival .

This year’s festival has a staff of 65, headed by Lemke and co-chair Lauren Cockrell, including, for the first time, a hired accountant. More than 300 volunteers — the Karma Patrol — will be on hand to make the event go smoothly.

Some of those volunteers have returned for decades, each year passing on the festival ’s history and ideals to newcomers.

Education remains central to the festival . Among this year’s speakers include authors Kim Stanley Robinson, a Davis resident whose latest critically acclaimed novel is titled “2312,” and Tobias S. Buckell, the New York Times bestselling author of “Halo: The Cole Protocol.”

The pair will discuss climate change from the point of view of science fiction at 1 p.m. Saturday in Young Hall.

The documentary “Edible City: Grow the Revolution” will be screened at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, also in Young Hall.

Also listed in this year’s program: 21 food booths, from ice cream to Indian cuisine; 12 education booths, on topics from midwifery to using gray water; and 15 service booths, ranging from henna painting and community supported agriculture.

Dozens of crafts vendors will sell jewelry, art glass, clothing, toys and more.

Also back for another year: a kids’ space for crafts and other activities, an art space featuring works in a variety of media and a sacred space for open mic, poetry reading and other activities. A “hoop space” will feature, well, you guessed it.

An eclectic range of music — including reggae, jazz, progressive rock, funk and hip-hop — and dance — including samba and belly dancing — also will be offered.

The festival continues to strive to be a zero-waste event, and annually composts or recycles more than 97 percent of its waste.

This year, there will be no charge for the use of reusable plates, mugs and silverware from food booths, which visitors are asked to bring to dish-return stations for reuse. The festival previously has asked for a deposit or charged for their use.

The forecast this weekend calls for temperatures to top 90 degrees. Since water and soda aren’t for sale at the festival , it’s best to bring a reusable water container to fill up at the hydration station.

Other tips:

* First aid and other assistance can be found at the Karma Dome, the festival ’s headquarters, at the northeast corner of the Quad.

* UCD is again emphasizing a zero-tolerance policy on drugs and alcohol.

* No camping is allowed on campus.

* Dogs are allowed, but must be kept on leashes.

* Organizers encourage walking or biking to the event. For those who drive, most campus lots are free on weekends, $7 on Fridays.

For a festival map and full program of events, see

— Reach Cory Golden at or 530-747-8046. Follow him on Twitter at @ cory _ golden



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

April 26, 2014 |

Republican-turned-Democrat Bill Dodd says he’s neither an opportunist nor a wolf in sheep’s clothing, but an Assembly candidate who is “pro-business” and “fiscally responsible” while being moderate to liberal on social issues.

A 14-year Napa County supervisor, Dodd will face four Yolo County candidates in June 3′s open primary: fellow Democrats Joe Krovoza and Dan Wolk, Davis’ mayor and mayor pro tem, respectively, and Republicans Charlie Schaupp, an Esparto farmer and retired Marine, and Dustin Call, a legislative aide and college student who lives in Davis.





Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

Ads are for real: Buick gets double takes

From page A9 | April 25, 2014 |

The television ads where neighbors, friends and family can’t identify a new car as a Buick are true to life.

The attractive styling on a 2014 Buick Regal test car so stumped admirers, many could not believe it was a Buick. The common question was, “What kind of car is that?” — even as they stared at the Buick and Regal badges.

Still others couldn’t believe the 2014 Regal only has four-cylinder engines. In fact, a newly improved, direct injected, turbocharged four cylinder is offered on every trim level for 2014 and delivers a commendable 259 horsepower and 295 foot-pounds of torque.

2014 Buick Regal GS AWD

Base price: $29,690 for base Regal FWD; $31,560 for Premium I FWD; $31,865 for base Regal AWD; $33,735 for Premium I AWD; $33,760 for Premium II FWD; $35,935 for Premium II AWD; $36,905 for GS FWD; $39,270 for GS AWD

Price as tested: $44,275

Type: Front-engine, all-wheel drive, five-passenger, mid-size sedan

Engine: 2-liter, turbocharged/intercooled, double overhead cam, direct injection, inline four cylinder

Mileage: 19 mpg (city), 27 mpg (highway)

Length: 190.2 inches

Wheelbase: 107.8 inches

Curb weight: 3,981 pounds

Built at: Oshawa, Ontario, Canada

Options: Driver confidence package #2 (includes adaptive cruise control, automatic collision preparation) $1,695; power moonroof $1,000; driver confidence package No. 1 (includes forward collision alert, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, memory settings for front seats and outside mirrors) $890; Crystal Red tintcoat exterior paint $495

Destination charge: $925

Subtly restyled with new light-emitting diode headlights and infotainment display for 2014, the Regal can come with front- or all-wheel drive. New safety features, such as cross traffic alert when the vehicle is backing up out of a parking space, are added to the equipment offerings. Plus, every Regal includes two years/24,000 miles of free scheduled maintenance.

Best of all, the 2014 Regal earned top, five out of five stars overall in federal government crash testing.

It’s also a recommended buy of Consumer Reports magazine where predicted reliability is average.

Starting manufacturer’s suggested retail price, including destination charge, is $30,615 for a base, front-wheel drive, 2014 Regal with 259-horsepower, turbo four cylinder and six-speed automatic. The lowest starting price for a 2014 Regal with all-wheel drive is $32,790, or $2,175 more. And the top, Regal GS has a starting retail price of $40,195 for 2014. But it does not include a power moonroof. That’s $1,000 extra.

Competitors include other premium, front-wheel drive sedans with four-cylinder engines.

As an example, the 2014 Acura TSX sedan has a starting MSRP, including destination charge, of $31,620 with 201-horsepower four cylinder and automatic transmission. The TSX, however, is not available with all-wheel drive.

Meantime, the front-wheel drive, 2014 Volvo S60 with 240-horsepower, turbocharged four cylinder and automatic transmission has a starting retail price of $34,225. The lowest starting MSRP, including destination charge, for a 2014 S60 with all-wheel drive is $35,725.

The Regal tester, a top-of-the-line GS AWD model with six-speed automatic, looked good in its tasteful Crystal Red Tintcoat paint and 19-inch alloy wheels. The car had a rich appearance and was visually interesting even on the sides, where door panels have an attractive sculpting line.

Fit and finish on the test car was excellent, too, with gaps between exterior metal body panels small in size and well aligned.

The car impressed with its quiet passenger compartment and overall handling, no matter which of three drive control modes it was in.

In standard drive control, the ride was the most compliant for daily commutes or leisurely weekend drives. It was definitely not harsh but still felt well-controlled.

The GS mode setting — activated by a button near the top of the dashboard — made the throttle more responsive, stiffened the ride and increased the steering effort needed. This setting worked well to manage body lean of the car as it traveled twisty mountain roads. The increased steering effort fit well, too, with the well-sized and tactilely pleasing steering wheel.

In between standard and GS drive settings is a sport mode with its own button on the dashboard. But in the test car, it wasn’t easy to notice much change in this middle setting, and the test car spent much of its time in standard or GS.

The Regal’s 2-liter, direct injected turbocharged four cylinder engine worked so smoothly, some passengers didn’t recognize a turbo was under the hood. Power was strong and steady, with just a hint of a lag as maximum torque of 295 foot-pounds hit by 2,500 rpm. The peppy, yet refined performance is good, considering the Regal GS AWD weighs nearly 4,000 pounds. Buick reports this model has a 6.8-second time from 0 to 60 miles per hour.

The 2014 Regal GS FWD with six-speed manual transmission — yes, Buick offers a manual on the Regal — is fastest, with a 6.2-second time.

Fuel economy isn’t as high as might be expected in this mid-size sedan. The federal government rates a 2014 Regal GS AWD model with automatic at just 19 miles per gallon in city driving and 27 mpg on the highway. The test car averaged 18 mpg in city driving and not quite 24 mpg on the highway with a lot of spirited driving.

Premium fuel is suggested but not required, and the Regal’s 18-gallon fuel tank — which can provide a combined city/highway range of less than 400 miles — can cost nearly $70 to fill with mid-range gasoline at today’s prices.

At less than 16 feet long from bumper to bumper, the Regal feels right sized, and the tester was agile and easy to park.

The back seat, with 37.3 inches of legroom and 36.8 inches of headroom, looks smaller than it is. Smaller stature adults at the outboard seat positions back there found decent space for feet and legs if front seats were moved up a bit on their tracks. The middle spot, however, is tight when three adults are back there. And the middle person has to contend with a sizable hump in the floor.

Trunk space in the Regal is 14.2 cubic feet, just a tad more than the 14 cubic feet in the TSX.

The 2014 Regal with automatic transmission is among the General Motors Co. vehicles recalled this month because a cable in the transmission may disengage from the shift lever. If this occurs, the driver may be unable to put the Regal into “park,” creating the risk the car could roll away.




April 25, 2014 |

After a series of scandals that led to the suspensions of three Democratic senators, and what Krovoza sees as “a general malaise about the effectiveness of government,” he says that voters want “ a smart, functioning government that puts policy and the people over politics.”

One way to do that, he says, is make decisions rooted in facts, not politics.

“My day job, what I’ve been doing for the last 17 years, has been working with faculty and graduate students on clean transportation and energy policy. Our goal is to transfer kind of right thinking policies to the legislature. I want to do that in spades.

“The University of California, not just Davis, is the research arm of the state of California, so we need to make sure that there are more mechanisms for getting good analysis and good policy recommendations out of UC and into the state of California.”

Krovoza said that he talks to voters about making tough choices during the recession. The city reduced staffing by 23 percent over six years, but has maintained and in some cases increased service, he says.

On education, Krovoza touts his 17 years at UCD, his service on the California Student Aid Commission, his time as a community college student trustee.

Krovoza said that there needs to be protections on the UC and California State University budget, similar to the way that Prop. 98 guarantees a portion will go to K-14 education.

“When times get tight, then, K-14 is protected but higher education — UC, CSU — are not,” he said. “This is part of what’s causing high student fees. When you’ve got to cut UC and CSU, the only place they can go for money is student fees and that’s reducing accessibility.”

Krovoza said he gets “a little nervous” about locking in a percentage of the budget, however. “I don’t know exactly how we’d do it,” he said.

Krovoza said that at the K-12 level, he’d seek additional funding for technical education to provide options for students who aren’t necessarily college bound and to incentivize group-based learning.

He would oppose “teaching to the test” and seek to move away from No Child Left Behind, testing to evaluate teachers and funding formulas based on test scores.

“We’re now using testing as something that we’re hanging over teachers and students in this world of teacher evaluation and such,” he said. “I support testing to help us learn how we should tweak our system, where administrators and teachers are collaborative.”

Krovoza, who has attracted Sierra Club and League of Conservation Voters endorsements, said that he would “defend staunchly” AB 32: the state’s landmark climate change law, which set the state’s goal of returning to 1990 greenhouse gas emission levels by 2020, and continue the push for increased energy from renewables.

He’d also bring a local perspective on addressing environmental issues. More than 200 cities in the state have climate action plans with little or no money to implement them.

“I’ve been part of something called the Transportation Coalition for Livable Cities,” he said. “That group is working to make sure cap and trade revenue, which is going to be enormous for the state, is pushed to the highest percent possible to local communities who can prove that their local actions will be carbon reducing. I think that that’s very powerful, and I want to continue that work in the Assembly.”

Likewise, Krovoza said that cities need help with water management.

“A community like Davis, with all of our talent and relatively good funding, still has a hard time making these assessments of exactly what’s the most effective, efficient, low-cost system,” he said.

“As I’ve travelled around the fourth Assembly district, you have cities of 5,000 people with no experts, barely a city council, and they’re supposed to figure out how to do water management? How do they hire the consultants, how do they characterize their groundwater basin, how do they do a big bidding process to get a good firm to come in? The challenges of these problems are completely swamping small communities.”

Krovoza opposes the Delta tunnels plan, supporting instead off-river storage north and south of the Delta, rather than damming rivers, and increased conservation. He is also a backer of high-speed rail.

During his tenure the city has “really reasserted our leadership” on environmental issues, including a new bike plan and transportation element for its general plan, he said.

“The water project is a spectacularly creative environmental advancement to get us off of our groundwater, to go into conjunctive use, to use low-quality well water for our parks and to buffer ourselves against all the minerals in the ground that we otherwise had to treat for,” he said.

Krovoza also cites: the city’s effort to divert 75 percent of its solid waste, conservation-oriented water rates, high efficiency standards for both the water supply and waste water treatment plants, the plastic bag bag and an anti-rodenticide resolution.

“Joe has a tremendous record that distinguishes him from public servants all over the state,” says Nicholas Josefowitz, founder of the advocacy group Leadership for a Clean Economy, which picked two Assembly candidates statewide to support (the other: Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal, D-Long Beach) in races for an open seat. “We picked people who would move the agenda forward — who would not just vote the right way but be the authors of the next great climate change legislation.”

Dodd and Schaupp have questioned whether Krovoza’s environmentalism would come before all else, including infill development and economic growth.

Dodd cites Krovoza’s vote against the Cannery, which Krovoza defends as an attempt to improve bike connectivity and increase safety by asking developers for a second grade-separated crossing.

“My environmentalism is performance-based environmentalism — it’s not command-and-control,” he says. “And so, in clean-vehicle regulations, in clean-fuel regulations, in land-use planning, what I believe in is setting up these financial incentives where we tell people, this is where we want to go, and we think you can move in that direction.”



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.


April 10, 2014 |

The Pleasants/Hoskins “Joyful Ranch” will be the site of the May 1 Winters History Symposium. Courtesy photo



Special to The Enterprise

Winters history photo

April 10, 2014 |

The picture is from the Vacaville Museum collection, showing the earliest fruit growers in Solano County. The people in the picture have their age following their names, and in parenthesis the year they arrived in this area. The picture was taken April 29th, 1894 at the James M. Pleasants ranch in upper Pleasants Valley to celebrate the 85th birthday of J.M. Pleasants.

Front row, Left to Right, John Reid Wolfskill, 90 (1836); M.R. Miller, 76, (1849); James Madison Pleasants, 85 (1849); J.R. Collins, 67, (1849); and G. W. Thissell, 65, (1850)
Back row, Left to Right, William James Pleasants, 60, (1849); E.R. Thurber, 68, (1850); Richardson Long, 74 (1849); and Edwin C. Rust, founder of the Winters Express in 1884.



Special to The Enterprise

PD 2014: Past themes

April 03, 2014 |

Every year, the Picnic Day board of directors selects a theme to reflect the mission and vision of that year’s Picnic Day. The theme is incorporated into many of the events at Picnic Day, especially the Picnic Day Parade.

2013 – Snapshot
2012 – Then, Now, Always
2011 – Rewind
2010 – Carpe Davis: Seizing Opportunities
2009 – Reflections: 100 Years of Aggie Legacy
2008 – A Kaleidoscope of Voices
2007 – Making Our Mark
2006 – Celebrate Today
2005 – Live on One Shields Ave.
2004 – Shifting Gears for 90 Years
2003 – Rock The Picnic
2002 – Open Mind, Open Door
2001 – Aggies Shine Together
2000 – Life’s A Picnic
1999 – Moo-ving Into the Future
1998 – Breaking New Ground
1997 – UC Davis Outstanding in It’s Fields
1996 – Carrying the Torch of Tradition
1995 – Down To Earth
1994 – Students Shining Through
1993 – Faces of the Future
1992 – Moovin Ahead
1991 – Catch the Spirit, Building a Better U
1990 – Shaping Our Environment with Diversity, Tradition and Style
1989 – Challenging Our Future Today
1988 – Progress Backed By Tradition
1987 – On The Move
1986 – Reaching New Heights
1985 – Setting The Pace
1984 – Celebrating Excellence: UCD’s Diamond Anniversary
1983 – Meeting the Challenge
1982 -
1981 – ’81 A Vintage Year
1980 – Decade Debut
1979 – Aggie Energy
1978 – Davis Directions
1977 -
1976 – UCDiversity
1975 – Hay Day
1974 – Cycles
1973 – The Farm Mooves
1972 – Remember the First
1971 – Memories of the Past… A Challenge to the Future
1970 – Blowing in the Wind
1969 – Freewheeling & Friendly
1968 – Know Your University and 100 Years Later
1967 – Farm
1966 -
1965 – Aggie Country
1964 – Today’s Aggie Family
1963 – Aggie Jubilee
1962 – Kaleidoscope ’62
1961 – Workshop for the World
1960 – Foundations for the Future
1959 – U-Diversity
1958 – Showcase of Progress
1957 – Campus Cavalcade
1956 – Aggie Milestones
1955 – Future Unlimited
1954 – California Cornucopia
1953 – At Home
1952 – Preview of Progress
1951 – Harvest of Science
1950 – Cavalcade of Agriculture
1949 – Research Makes the Difference
1941 – We Are Still Behind the Plow
1940 – Agriculture, the Nation’s Foundation
1937 – Cal Aggies, Farmer better living, partners in Agricultural progress
1936 – Be entertained
1935 – Agriculture Ahead
1934 – 25 years ago
1933 – A New Day in Agriculture
1930 – Twenty Years Ago in Agriculture
1928 – Look Beneath the Surface
1923 – Follow the Sign



Enterprise staff

Roy Bellhorn

April 03, 2014 |


Courtesy photo
Roy W. Bellhorn, D.V.M., is the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award at Michigan State Veterinary School. He is holding Kermit, clearly a mutual love relationship.

Photo by Margaret Burns
Roy W. Bellhorn, D.V.M. is a Distinguished Alumnus of the Michigan State Veterinary School for his contributions to veterinary medicine.

Photo by Margaret Burns
Roy W. Bellhorn, D.V.M. is the Distinguished Alumnus of the year at Michigan State Veterinary School for his contributions to his profession. He is being wooed by Kermit the Lovable.

Bellhorn receives prestigious veterinary medicine award

Staff writer

Roy Bellhorn, a Winters resident for 30 years, and still an “implant” in town, is known locally for his singing in barbershop style (or swing) with Octapella. He can be found delivering meals to seniors, teaching literacy one-on-one, helping out in the Winters Theatre Company kitchen, dining with the Olde Phartz, or chatting up a lovely lady here and there.
He never brags about what he has done professionally, but his college has recognized it this year. He is the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year of the Michigan State Veterinary School.
This award is given to a graduate of the school who is “held in high esteem by his or her colleagues and who has excelled in practice, teaching, research, service and/or organized veterinary medicine.”
Dr. Roy William Bellhorn has done all of that. And more.
He is one of the five founders of the subspecialty of veterinary ophthalmology. He trained in human ophthalmology and has a master’s degree from New York University in human ophthalmology because there were no veterinary ophthalmology courses in the 1960s. He applied his knowledge to animals, usually dogs and cats, but occasionally horses or apes, parrots or dolphins or whales. He was a consultant to the Bronx Zoo for exotic animal eye diseases.
At the UC Davis Veterinary School, where he was recruited in 1984, he won the Norden Teacher of the Year award.
He is known for his research in animal models of human disease, for which he was mentored by his chairman at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, Paul Henkind. Bellhorn held grants from the National Institutes of Health for many years.
He was president of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmology, which he helped found; chaired the board defining their residency programs and proficiency examinations.
Bellhorn is still an active member, as an Emeritus, of the Ophthalmology service at UC Davis Veterinary School.
His contributions are so numerous and longstanding, that it is not surprising when one young veterinary ophthalmology resident was introduced to him, she blurted out, “Dr. Bellhorn, I thought you were dead!”
He is not dead and he lives in Winters.

(Disclaimer: This story was written by Maggie Burns, a sometimes collaborator, critic, and his wife.)



Enterprise staff

PD 2014 Campus Rec events (from online newsletter)

April 02, 2014 |

The 100th Picnic Day is right around the corner on April 12, and Campus Recreation and Unions is ready to celebrate! Here’s a sneak peak at what our units have planned.
Activities and Recreation Center (ARC): Open house, 11 a.m.–4 p.m.
Cal Aggie Marching Band: CAMB will strut their stuff in the Picnic Day parade, 8–10 a.m. Catch them again at the Arboretum during Battle of the Bands, 2–10 p.m.
Craft Center: Open house, noon–3 p.m.
Equestrian Center: Open house, noon–3 p.m.
Games Area: Arcade open 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Bowling and billiards available 5–11 p.m.
Outdoor Adventures: Open house, 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Check out the new facility and learn about the exciting activities and classes offered in spring.
Sport Clubs: Sport Clubs will host the Men’s Waterpolo Alumni Game, 9–10 a.m., and the Women’s Waterpolo Alumni Game, 10–11 a.m., at Hickey Pool.



Enterprise staff

PD 2014: Parade marshals from UCD website

March 29, 2014 |

Hal & Carol Sconyers
The centennial Picnic Day Board of Directors is pleased to introduce this year’s parade marshals – Hal & Carol Sconyers and Sandy Holman. We believe that these individuals exemplify what it means to have Aggie Pride and spirit through their pivotal contributions and roles on the UC Davis campus. These individuals have helped make Davis what it is today.

For their part, Hal & Carol Sconyers have proven that that they both are true Aggies. Having both graduated from Davis, the Sconyerses now reside at the University Retirement Community just a mile from campus. Hal graduated from UC Davis in 1952 with a degree in Agronomy from the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. He initially enrolled at Davis as a veteran using the G.I. Bill to pay for his tuition. When Hal first came to Davis in 1948, he registered as a pre vet major; this was the same year that UC Davis’ School of Veterinary Medicine opened. Carol began her time at Davis in 1951 as a Home Economics major. While at Davis, Hal was a part of the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity. Hal and his then new wife, Carol, were both on the Alpha Gamma Rho float as a part of the 1952 Picnic Day parade.

Through his studies in agronomy at UC Davis, Hal was able to gain experience in making farm loans at a major bank in Sacramento, which started him on a long career in financial services. This would lead him to becoming the founding CEO and President of the Modesto Banking Company (MBC). After spending many years in the banking industry in Modesto, the Sconyerses made their return back to Davis in 1994. It was at his desk in the the MBC bank that Hal received a call from a UC Davis development officer asking for his financial support of the Alpha Gamma Rho room in the soon-to-be built Walter A. Buehler Alumni Center; it was the building of the Walter A. Buehler Alumni Center that catalyzed his & Carol’s return.

It was during this return that the Sconyerses both fell in love with the Davis community and campus for a second time. Hal was on the California Aggie Alumni Association board for four years, from 1991 to 1995. He also served on the UC Davis Foundation board from 1995 to 2001. It was through such contributions that started the now successful CAAA. The Sconyerses were also very great friends with the fifth chancellor of UC Davis, Larry Vanderhoef. When Chancellor Vanderhoef initially started his tenure, one of his goals included a campaign to create a performing arts center on campus. The goal was to bring world-class performers to Davis students and surrounding communities. After hearing his plans, the Sconyerses became very instrumental in bringing the idea into fruition. They were on the early steering committee and helped raise the initial seed money for what is now the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. When the facility was being built, they were able to participate in hardhat tours and were present on the opening night and very first performance at the Mondavi Center. Carol took a particularly large role at the Mondavi Center. She was the President of “Friends of UC Davis Presents” for a year before it became the “Friends of the Mondavi Center,” which she led for 2 years. To this day, the Sconyers continue to take an active role in the arts. They volunteer as ushers at matinee shows at the Mondavi Center.

In addition to their aforementioned contributions, the Sconyerses have contributed to UC Davis’ Intercollegiate Athletics, the Cal Aggie Marching Band, UC Davis Medical Center, Graduate School of Management, as well as both CAAA and CA&ES scholarship programs. Hal & Carol also still attend UC Davis sport games on a daily basis – always cheering for their favorite Aggie team! It is through such contributions and reasons that the 100th Picnic Day Board of Directors is excited to have them as this year’s parade marshals. Through this nomination, the board feels we are celebrating the Sconyerses for their many contributions to UC Davis as a great institution.

Sandy Holman
Sandy Holman has also proven to display Aggie pride through her admirable work. She graduated from UC Davis in 1987 as a Psychology major. With her degree, Sandy was able to work with the two things that she loved in life – people and writing. All of her experiences would eventually lead to her starting the Culture Co-Op. While at Davis, Sandy took an active role on campus through her multiple jobs, including a job at the Tape Lab, where students could rent out tapes of lectures, as well as was on the volleyball team. While at Davis, Sandy was also able to meet her husband, who is also a fellow Aggie alumnus. Next year, they will have been married for 25 years!

After graduation, Sandy began to write on the side, which eventually culminated to her publishing many books that have been nationally and internationally circulated. She found a great interest in the interactions between people and how that is sometimes manifested through prejudices and biases. It was her goal to fight such prevalent social injustices through her work, which was aided by her experience in dealing with different groups of people. It is Sandy’s goal to counteract these social injustices, which would result in people realizing their fullest potential.

After working several jobs, which included interacting with children, Sandy started the Culture Co-Op in 1991 as a way to fight against hate. It is her hope that she leaves a legacy that “encourage[s] people to love themselves and others and to share power and resources in the world.” In addition to spearheading the Culture Co-Op, Sandy also served on the board at the International House for 3 years. While on the board, Sandy collaborated on the International Festival, which brought three thousand people in its first year. The focus of the festival is to bring different cultures of many countries to the people of Davis for a day as an educational experience.

Through her work in fostering diversity and community at Davis, the 100th Picnic Day Board is very proud to nominate Sandy Holman as the other parade marshal for this centennial celebration. It is our belief that through Sandy’s continued and past work, such feelings of unity are felt throughout the UC Davis campus and in the city of Davis.



Special to The Enterprise

Honda Smart House

March 22, 2014 |

MAK Design+Build is proud to announce the opening of the Honda Smart Home US, a showcase for environmental innovation on the UC Davis campus in the West Village net-zero neighborhood. This demonstration home is a showcase for cutting edge green living and transportation technologies.

MAK designed the interior spaces and provided sustainability consulting for interior details including fixtures, appliances, furniture and finishes. All furnishings and finishes were selected to maintain the highest levels of indoor air quality and minimize environmental impact. Efficient plumbing, lighting, and appliance selections will reduce the consumption load for the life of the house. Beautiful finishes and furnishings ensure that the home is as enjoyable as it is healthy and responsible.

Other local businesses involved with the project include Davis Energy Group, Monley Cronin, Cunningham Engineering, and the California Lighting and Technology Center.

The Honda Smart Home US is located at 299 Sage Street in the West Village area of campus and will be open for public tours on March 25 from 12 pm to 4 pm. The house will be open again Friday, March 28, Saturday March 29, and Sunday March 30 from 11 am to 4 pm. More information is available at



March 07, 2014 |

By Cory Golden

Lincoln Journal Star

WAHOO — Inside the white house with the black shutters, none of Ken Smith’s things have moved, not his after-shave, not the collection of toy farm machinery, not the green blanket on his chair.

In the garage, the oldies station on his radio still plays.

Sitting on the patio, rain rapping its little roof, his widow drinks coffee in the gray cold.

“Everything is going to stay where he left it,” Roma Smith says. “His clothes will stay in the closet. I still feel like maybe he’ll come back, that he’ll need his stuff, even though I know he won’t.”

An allegedly drunk driver hit Ken, who was filling potholes May 15 for the city of Lincoln. Less than three hours later, Roma stood over her husband, dead at 52 from massive internal injuries, a rubber sheet pulled to his chin.

With her fingers, she brushed the hair of his mustache and the hair on his head, parted to one side, turned dark black to gray-tinged, always a touch too long.

Married for 30 years, they’d made it through the Vietnam War, through political campaigns, through building and closing a business, through her battles with multiple sclerosis, through raising a song and scraping to get by.

Now it ended like this. Goodbye, so soon.


They met when he smeared catfish bait in her mouth. She got sick; he apologized; she accepted.

He was a quiet senior, the middle child of a farm family, a runner who drove too fast in his ’59 Ford. She was the talkative only child of the county’s register of deeds. They went to the movies, played pinball, ate burgers at the teen center.

“It was like it was meant to be,” she says.

It was 1965.

After graduation he loaded pens at the sale barn and delivered lumber until 1968, when he enlisted in the Army. He spent a year in Germany, where he had a portrait of her painted from a senior photo. Then he shipped out to Vietnam.

The young couple scribbled letters. She worried he’d get bee stings, to which he was badly allergic.

He came home in May 1970. They didn’t talk about the war; instead, they planned a wedding.

In 1975 he began farming near Wahoo, working his parents’ 160 acres, which the couple moved onto, and another 340 owned by her parents. They bought Mr. J’s Drive-In, which they ran until 1978, when Roma decided the couple couldn’t raise her baby, little Heath, working 12 to 14 hour days in a fast-food joint.

Active in the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, Ken took a stab at politics in 1980. Selling insurance and running the restaurant had brought him out of his shell, and the campaign was successful. He served one term as a county supervisor.

In 1982, convinced the state needed a new generation of leaders, he ran for lieutenant governor and lost in the Republican primary.

A member of the Saunders County Historical Society, Ken bough a century-old gran elevator in Ithaca his grandfather once ran. His wife thought he was nuts. In February, the elevator was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

In 1986, a doctor diagnosed Roma with multiple sclerosis. For a six-month stretch, she lost her sight. To boost her spirits, Ken bought her a keyboard, but she couldn’t see the sheet music. So he bought her a baby goat instead.

He led her by the arm, read to Heath because she couldn’t.

Later, she campaigned for school board, walking neighborhoods with a cane. Ken made her signs. She won and remains on the board 13 years later.

Heath grew into a state champion runner, his dad always cheering him from the backstretch, even if it meant climbing a barbed wire fence to get to the spot where he could make eye contact with his son.

When Heath chose Nebraska Wesleyan over schools that offered athletic scholarships, Ken took another job to make it happen, working 45 hours each week at a seed corn plant.

A friend suggested he apply with the Lincoln Public Works Department. He quit the plant to work 4 p.m.-midnight plowing streets or fixing potholes.

The Smiths settled into a routine after 1993, buying the little house in Wahoo so she wouldn’t have to struggle climbing stairs.

Early each morning, Roma would hear the comforting sound of Ken’s pickup pulling up in the drive at 10 minutes before 1. He’d come in, make a tuna sandwich, watch a movie on TV.


In early April, Roma decided to write the couples’ obituaries. It was a family custom. They were tucked away in a Bible, ready when the time came. She read Ken his one morning while he was in the bathroom, and he laughed.

It was about six weeks later, around 9:45 p.m. on a weeknight, when Ken called using his cell phone. He wore a western shirt, as usual, jeans and an old pair of Heath’s track shoes.

“What’s wrong?” Roma asked.

“Oh, nothing,” he said. “I’ve just got to go to 56th and O Street to fill a pothole. I just wanted to say I love you.” He was like that, Roma says. A pad of paper is filled with notes: Gone to the farm. Love you, Me.

About 90 minutes later, he was loading shovels into a truck when another truck driving 45 to 50 mph hit Ken, witnesses said. The driver, Robert E. Lee, a 31-year-old with three previous convictions for driving under the influence, is scheduled for a June 23 preliminary hearing in Lancaster County Court on manslaughter charges.

“I don’t believe in an eye-for-an-eye, a tooth-for-a-tooth,” Roma says, “but people like that have to be stopped before they hurt another family.”


Heath missed his college graduation to go to his dad’s funeral. He helps out on his grandfather’s farm now. The sheep will be sold off, along with other animals.

He says he finds himself sitting at the farm for hours at a time, just thinking. On Wednesday, he stood in an antique store, trying to see things as his dad saw them.

He used to dream of running in the Olympics. That dream is over. Now he thinks about his father’s hands, so rough and hard that a friend once asked what was the matter with them.

“I said he worked hard,” Heath says. “How can you tell someone that those hands showed how much he loved us.”

Heath works part-time at Kmart and mows lawns for money. At 23, he faces $30,000 in school loans and taking care of his mother, who still suffers from double vision, and grandmother and the farm and a little daughter of his own, 2-year-old Abigail.

“I’ll work 80, 90, 100 hours a week or more. I just want to keep what my dad built together,” Heath says. “I don’t worry about myself, just my family. I’ll never ask for help. We’ll get by somehow, but it’ll be hard.”

When Ken’s girlfriend got pregnant, others were unsure how to handle it. But Ken supported his son openly, was happy without hesitation, even beating Heath to the hospital on the day little Abby was to be born.

“Hopefully I can be as good to her as my dad was to me,” Heath says.


Sixty bouquets brightened the church for Ken’s funeral. Roma wore a black suit she’d bought just weeks before, so new she hadn’t taken it out of the bag. Cards flooded in, so many it took her and six friends nine hours to write thank-you notes.

Roma sees other friends at the store, catching them out of the corner of her eye as they slink off, unsure what to say. Others drip by with food or a hug.

“When you hurt in a little town, everyone hurts with you,” she says. “They don’t know your pain, but they share your sorrow.”

Roma sits with her mother each day, sits and talks, sits and waits for any of it to make sense, sits and waits for Lee’s trial to begin.

“I have not really sat down and bawled,” Roma says. “When someone is buried in the ground, for most people it’s the end. But this is only beginning.”



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

Ski camp notes

December 01, 2013 |

As part of the Davis High School ski team for three seasons, junior Davis Perez has regularly heard coach Bob Brewer say at the last meeting of the year, “If you really want to improve your skiing, consider going to race camp this summer.”

So Davis, his younger brother, Tate, and five of their friends took Brewer’s advice to heart and booked spots at Timberline Summer Snow Race Camp at Mt. Hood, Ore.

(Details about ski camp)
So what can one expect at summer ski camp?

Timberline Summer Snow Race Camp (

So who else attended ski camp?

Ski team kids as well as kids who want to be on the DHS team getting a head start. Besides then-seventh-graders Tate Perez and Kyle Powell, two of this year’s freshman racers, Josh Lovell and Jackson Lutzker attended last summer.

National license plates from many of the 50 states; but international skiers … heard Russian, Japanese, and kids skied beside members of the Canadian Olympic team.

2,100 lift tickets sold on Monday (looks far less crowded)

32 stayed with Timberline that we used….Major benefit is it’s the only race camp with lift line-cutting privileges.

You can stay at the Timberline Lodge, recognizable as the exterior of “The Overlook Hotel” from The Shining, or rent a place. Talk about our place and how the kids loved it.
Kids who stayed at camp did afternoon activities…Mt. Hood Adventure Park, rafting on XXX river,

Can demo skis in Govt. Camp

Daily videoing gets done, and at the end of the ski day, students sit with their instructors to go over the day’s footage…instructor analyzes footage with skiers. Send a DVD home at the end of the camp.

From Timberline website:

Quality coaching from our experienced and dedicated staff provides participants with an optimal training experience. Our emphasis during Performance Camps is on gate training for Giant Slalom and Slalom. This camp is ideal for both the beginner racer and the very experienced competitor. Summer race camp is the perfect opportunity to focus on fundamentals and make changes that will make you faster for the coming season. Groups are divided based on age and ability.

Details about the cabin/recreation in the area

Entertainment in the area…Alpine Slide (name of that park?), Portland not too far (look this up) and a jet boat along the Willamette River. Huckleberry milkshakes!

(move this lower)
My husband, Steve, and I assumed we’d have the week off to do whatever we wanted while the kids were at camp, but our older son approached us and asked if we’d consider renting a place near ski camp for the group of friends (with Steve and I as chaperones). Long story short, we opted for that rather than having the kids lodge at Timberline.

Once we got to Mt. Hood, we knew several other Davis students who attended camp and stayed at the lodge, and those we talked to reported enjoying it. But our guys were very happy having the cabin as a home base.

The lodge, it should be said, is the famous Timberline Lodge, recognizable as the exterior of “The Overlook Hotel” from Stephen King’s horror movie, “The Shining.”

Tyler Powell:

3. The conditions were very icy in the morning, then got to a good condition of snow after an hour of skiing. The rest of the day was slushy!

4. My coach was very awesome! They went to the personal level, learning your name and wanting to help you ski better.

Tyler Powell
Joel Almeida:

6. The best part was probably the alpine slide, that was crazy. We originally had planned to spend some of the day there and most at the other part of the amusement park but we ended up going back to it because it was so fun. It probably never would have been allowed in California; there were no safety regulations like helmets, which made it way cooler. I almost fell out a couple of times, but I never did, so the risk just made it better. Getting air on it was also awesome.
5. I would do absolutely do it again, no question about it. I don’t know if I would do it if I wasn’t gonna be in the cabin with my friends, though. That was the best part, because while our coach, Ben, was great, the conditions of the mountain weren’t. While it was nice to be skiing in the summer, it wasn’t very good skiing. There were no trees, no powder, just the icy, salty, steep race course. However, being with friends and getting to go do crazy awesome things like the alpine slide and riverboat tour was super cool, and it was good to get the practice in for the next season. (That sorta answered some of the other questions too I guess)
Timberline notes:

Timberline Summer Snow Race Camp (

Ski team kids as well as kids who want to be on the DHS team getting a head start (Lovell, Lutzker)

National license plates from many of the 50 states; but international skiers … heard Russian, Japanese, and kids skied beside members of the Canadian Olympic team.

2,100 lift tickets sold on Monday (looks far less crowded)

32 stayed with Timberline that we used….Major benefit is it’s the only race camp with lift line-cutting privileges.

You can stay at the Timberline Lodge, recognizable as the exterior of “The Overlook Hotel” from The Shining, or rent a place. Talk about our place and how the kids loved it.
Kids who stayed at camp did afternoon activities…Mt. Hood Adventure Park, rafting on XXX river,

Can demo skis in Govt. Camp

Entertainment in the area…Alpine Slide (name of that park?), Portland not too far (look this up) and a jet boat along the Willamette River.

Daily videoing gets done, and at the end of the ski day, students sit with their instructors to go over the day’s footage…instructor analyzes footage with skiers. Send a DVD home at the end of the camp.

Huckleberry milkshakes!

From Timberline website:

Quality coaching from our experienced and dedicated staff provides participants with an optimal training experience. Our emphasis during Performance Camps is on gate training for Giant Slalom and Slalom. This camp is ideal for both the beginner racer and the very experienced competitor. Summer race camp is the perfect opportunity to focus on fundamentals and make changes that will make you faster for the coming season. Groups are divided based on age and ability.

AGE 10 AND UP (younger age possible with approval)

June 30 – July 6
July 7 – July 13
July 21 – July 27

Combine two sessions and receive a $100 credit.

DAY CAMP SESSIONS (5-DAY) – $575/person
July 1 – 5
July 8 – 12
July 22 – 26
DAY DAY CAMP SESSIONS (3-DAY) – $375/person
July 1 – 3
July 8 – 10
July 22 – 24

Day 1: Free skiing warm-up, drills focusing on athletic stance and GS Training drills.
Day 2: Warm-up drills focus on athletic stance, GS Training with individual focus.
Day 3: Warm-up drills, GS training with individual focus, timed GS runs
Day 4: Warm-up drills with slalom focus, slalom training with individual focus.
Day 5: Warm-up drills, slalom training with individual focus, timed slalom runs.

• Safe & Secure
• Priority Lift Access (cut to the front of the line!)
• Early summer season soft snow
• No attitudes, intimidation or embarrassment
• Home Court Advantage – We run the Ski Area
• Historic Timberline Lodge
• Professional Coaches & Counselors
• On-hill lodging at Timberline Lodge
• Video Analysis
• Afternoon Activities
• Meals by award winning Timberline Culinary Team
• Camp session DVD
• Camper promo gift pack

Same as above, but without the lodging, afternoon activities, meals and camp session DVD. Video analysis available for additional $20.



America can quit coal and oil addiction the same way we’re quitting tobacco

February 18, 2014 |

By Mark Reynolds

Back when Fred Flintstone was puffing away on Winston cigarettes in the 1960s, it was hard to imagine the day would ever come when we would see the end of smoking in the U.S. But, much to the relief of our overburdened health-care system, some officials now dare to predict that the adult smoking rate will drop to 5 percent or lower by mid-century.

So, how is America breaking its addiction to tobacco, and what lessons can we apply to a similarly dangerous addiction — the burning of fossil fuels?

For starters, the days when ashtrays were a fixture on nearly every office desk are long gone, thanks to restrictions on smoking in the workplace, restaurants, airlines and other confined spaces where humans must share the air. Being a smoker today is, to say the least, inconvenient, as workers in cities like Minneapolis must sometimes brave 10-below wind chill to satisfy their nicotine fix.

While restrictions are making smokers outcasts, there’s an even more powerful incentive to quit or never take up this nasty habit: Economics.

I risk dating myself here, but I can recall a time when every diner in America had a vending machine in which you could drop two quarters, pull a lever and acquire your favorite pack of smokes. These days, that same box of Marlboros will set you back $6 in some places, courtesy of the heavy state and federal taxes placed on cigarettes.

At a certain point, people are confronted with the total insanity of spending over two grand a year to increase their chances of getting lung cancer, money better spent on things like, oh, groceries. Teenagers working minimum-wage jobs, even those who flunked algebra, can easily do the math and figure out that a pack-a-day habit eats up maybe a quarter of their paycheck.

The taxes we place on tobacco are a prime example of an economic tool called Pigovian taxation, named after an early 20th Century economist named Arthur Pigou. Many conservative economists subscribe to this school of thought, which maintains that the free market normally produces things that are good for society. There are times, Pigou argued, however, when the market fails. Those times occur when something imposes a cost to society that is not reflected in its price. When that happens, it is necessary to correct that market failure with a tax.

Cigarette smoking imposes tremendous costs to our society. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attributes 480,000 deaths per year in the U.S. to smoking, including 42,000 deaths from second-hand smoke. The economic cost is equally staggering: $133 billion in direct medical care for adults and more than $156 billion in lost productivity.

By imposing a heavy tax on cigarettes, some of those costs are now reflected in the price Americans pay for tobacco. That steep price is discouraging people from buying cigarettes and helping us move toward a smoke-free, healthier society.

In a similar way, conservative economists – from Greg Mankiw, to Douglas Holtz-Eakin to George Shultz – believe a Pigovian tax should be applied to fix the market failure surrounding fossil fuels. These fuels are relatively cheap because, like tobacco years ago, their costs to society are not accounted for in their price.

Those costs include treating respiratory and other health problems associated with air pollution. They also include costs associated with climate change, which will get higher in years to come if we fail to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We’re talking about damage from weather-related disasters made worse by global warming, higher food prices stemming from crop shortages, and deaths and hospitalizations caused by extreme heat.

The failure of Congress to treat our fossil fuel addiction the same way we treated our tobacco addiction is forcing President Obama to deal with climate change through a regulatory process abhorred by conservatives.

Such regulations would be unnecessary if Congress enacted a steadily-rising tax on the carbon content of coal, oil and gas. This would correct the market failure that makes fossil fuels our first option to generate electricity and provide transportation. If revenue from such a tax returned to households, we can break our carbon addiction without imposing economic hardship on families. Border tariffs on imports from nations that lack a similar pricing mechanism will motivate other countries to follow our lead.

Taxes are already helping us to kick the tobacco habit. They can help us kick another equally harmful habit and preserve a livable world for our grandchildren. As Fred would say, “Yabba-dabba-doo!”

Mark Reynolds is Executive Director of Citizens Climate Lobby.

On Fri, Feb 14, 2014 at 4:08 PM, Debbie Davis wrote:
Hi Elisabeth:
The text of the oped piece did not arrive with your form. Would you mind attaching it to this email?

On Feb 14, 2014, at 3:27 PM, Davis Enterprise wrote:

Full Name
Elisabeth Robbins
City of Residence
Phone (including area code)
ending addiction to tobacco shows how to end addiction to fossil fuels
News Tip
Hi Debra,

I have just received this oped from Citizens Climate Lobby Executive Director Mark Reynolds, and I’m sending it to you in hopes you will publish it. Health officials have recently reported that they now think we can virtually eliminate smoking in the US by mid-century. This is great news for the health of our country. And it shows how we might break another harmful addiction, burning fossil fuels that emit heat-trapping gases.

I hope you will consider running this oped in the Davis Enterprise.


Elisabeth Robbins
Yolo County Citizens Climate Lobby
150 Freeman Street
Woodland, CA 95695
319 981 6555



Special to The Enterprise

SPRING HI: Proper planning is key to enjoyable home remodeling

February 13, 2014 |

After years of biding their time, waiting for the economy, job stability, and home values to improve, many homeowners are ready to get their remodeling projects rolling. Local designers report that new client contacts have increased significantly over the past few years.

While deferring home improvements can make some homeowner’s over-eager to get started, MAK Design+Build’s project assistant Juliana Tadano stresses that the first and most important step in remodeling is to create a game plan. Tadano provides suggestions below for moving your project from a “someday” daydream to a “let’s do this” reality in a smart, efficient manner.

* The most important step in remodeling is to establish a plan. Will you be staying in the home long-term or remodeling to improve real estate interest? How does your home compare to others in your neighborhood, in terms of condition, improvements and value? This can help you establish a realistic budget for investing in your home. While you can’t recover all of your remodeling costs through selling your home, a smart remodel can make your home more desirable on the market as well as more enjoyable to live in.

* Next consider where the most positive impact could be made. Are your kitchen cabinets falling apart? Bathroom tiles falling off? Or are the kids outgrowing your small footprint?

Consider your kitchens, baths, roof, and HVAC system as well as the additional space that most people long for. Many homes in Davis have original components that are reaching the end of their useful lives. Update the hardworking rooms and systems in your house that you use every day to enjoy the maximum value of your project. You can often improve the traffic flow, storage and enjoyment of your existing home without adding space — which keeps costs down and shortens the time you will be living through your remodel.

* Determine priorities, an overall budget and a budget for each room or section of the project. Be sure to factor in timeframes that works best for your family. Then head to inspirational websites such as and to explore what sorts of possibilities excite you. Discuss your project ideas and goals with everyone in your family — not only does everyone have different needs, but everyone will need to live through the planning, dust and disruption that remodeling brings. Engaging the whole family will open up opportunities for everyone to be excited about the project ahead.

When you are ready to contact remodeling professionals, having done this research and prioritizing will make the interview process smoother. Be sure to look for licensed, local professionals who specialize in remodeling and have experience in your area.

Don’t be afraid to discuss budget, as this will help your remodeling professional make suggestions on prioritizing your list of projects. A responsible remodeler will help you maximize your investment and prioritize your needs. Proper planning will help you manage costs, minimize headaches and maximize the enjoyment of your project.



Special to The Enterprise

A solution for bad teaching

February 08, 2014 |

A Solution for Bad Teaching
By Adam Grant

PHILADELPHIA — IT’S no secret that tenured professors cause problems in universities. Some choose to rest on their laurels, allowing their productivity to dwindle. Others develop tunnel vision about research, inflicting misery on students who suffer through their classes.

Despite these costs, tenure may be a necessary evil: It offers job security and intellectual freedom in exchange for lower pay than other occupations that require advanced degrees.

Instead of abolishing tenure, what if we restructured it? The heart of the problem is that we’ve combined two separate skill sets into a single job. We ask researchers to teach, and teachers to do research, even though these two capabilities have surprisingly little to do with each other. In a comprehensive analysis of data on more than half a million professors, the education experts John Hattie and Herbert Marsh found that “the relationship between teaching and research is zero.” In all fields and all kinds of colleges, there was little connection between research productivity and teaching ratings by students and peers.

Currently, research universities base tenure decisions primarily on research productivity and quality. Teaching matters only after you have cleared the research bar: It is a bonus to teach well.

In my field of organizational psychology, there is a rich body of evidence on designing jobs to promote motivation and productivity. The design of the professor job violates one of the core principles: Tasks should be grouped together based on the skill sets of the individuals who hold them.

If we created three kinds of tenure rather than one, we might see net gains in both research and teaching.

A research-only tenure track would be for professors who have the passion and talent for discovering knowledge, but lack the motivation or ability to teach well. This would allow them to do more groundbreaking studies and produce more patents, while sparing students the sorrow of shoddy courses.

Creating more full-time research professorships could combat the decline of research productivity post-tenure, as many productive professors see their nonteaching time consumed by administrative responsibilities. If research professors didn’t teach, administrative duties wouldn’t impede their work.

A teaching-only tenure track would be for professors who excel in communicating knowledge. Granting tenure on the basis of exemplary teaching would be a radical step for research universities but it might improve student learning. In a recent landmark study at Northwestern, students learned more from professors who weren’t on the tenure track. When students took their first course in a subject with a professor who didn’t do research, they got significantly better grades in their next class in that subject.


Kotik 20 hours ago
I am glad that MK suggested to do away with the tenure system. I have been suggesting this for over three decades. Tenure system has been…
Red Sox Fan 20 hours ago
This article is poorly reasoned and informed from its very first sentence. To wit: “It is no secret that tenured professors cause problems…
Casual Observer 20 hours ago
Most universities need grants and research contracts to fund the institutions, these days, especially the publically owned ones. As the…
Currently, universities pay adjunct instructors below the rate of tenure-track faculty and give them short-term contracts. If tenure were available for teaching excellence, with pay and prestige comparable to tenure for research, we could attract and retain more exceptional educators. Replacing adjuncts with tenured teachers would cost more, but there are ways to offset that, perhaps by funding more research with grants.

The third tenure track would be for research and teaching. Professors who succeed in both could maintain this dual role, whereas those who struggle in research could eventually shift to the teaching track, and vice versa.

Of course, this model is not without challenges. Universities have clear criteria for evaluating research productivity and impact, but typically falter by assessing teaching quality solely through student ratings. That said, Dr. Marsh and his colleagues find that student ratings are less biased than many people assume: Contrary to popular belief, students rarely favor teachers who grade leniently — and give higher ratings to teachers who assign heavier workloads.

Still, students can rate professors as great teachers even if they teach information that is wrong. To support tenure on the basis of teaching alone, we need new metrics for evaluating the quality of the knowledge that teachers disseminate in the classroom. For example, research professors could provide updates on discoveries and vet the accuracy of information taught, while teaching professors could curate questions back from the classroom to help researchers pursue meaningful projects.

I have watched skilled researchers burn out after failing in the classroom and gifted teachers lose their positions because university policies limited the number of courses that adjunct professors could teach. Dividing tenure tracks may be what economists call a Pareto improvement: It benefits one group without hurting another. Let’s reserve teaching for professors with the relevant passion and skill — and reward it. Sharing knowledge with students should be a privilege of tenure, not an obligation.

— Adam Grant is a professor of management and psychology at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and the author of “Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success.” This piece was published originally in The New York Times



Special to The Enterprise

Campaign for Communities

February 06, 2014 |

Enclosed is an op-ed on communities of color and the environment by Kathleen Rogers, president, Earth Day Network; Greg Moore, executive director of the NAACP National Voter Fund; and Antonio Gonzales, president of the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project (SVREP). Please let me know if you are interested in using the piece. Photos of the authors are available and credit to American Forum is appreciated. Thanks!

Denice Zeck
American Forum

By Kathleen Rogers, Greg Moore and Antonio Gonzales

This month marks the 10th anniversary of Campaign for Communities, which created a coalition of Latino, African American, low-income and environmental organizations working to educate, register and turn out voters using environmental issues as motivation. During the 2004 and 2008 election cycles, we registered hundreds of thousands of voters and turned out more — all of whom were educated as to how their health was at risk from environmental issues and how to analyze candidates’ records. Most recently, we conducted an on-the-ground Latino voter education/registration/turnout on California’s Prop. 39, which passed handily and with no small credit going to Latinos, African Americans and other minorities who voted in higher numbers than whites.

Our initial effort was a breakthrough. Before then, no coalition of national black, brown and environmental groups had ever been formed to work on voter education. At the time, few Latino or African American organizations were singularly focused on environmental issues. While minority-led environmental justice groups had long existed, most were focused on environmental health issues. None were focused on voter education and making the environment a major voting issue.

When we began, we suffered no illusions. We knew that jobs, education, immigration and other issues would initially trump environment, an issue never fully translated to minority populations. Our initial attempts to create environmental educational materials that would resonate with minority voters produced limited results. But we found common ground and our coalition produced long-term friendships and shared history.

At first, there wasn’t much polling on how Latinos or African Americans would vote on environmental issues or whether they would vote for candidates based on environmental records. Little money was being spent on minority voter persuasion regarding environmental issues — odd, given the disproportionate impact environmental issues have had on minority and poor communities and how easy it would have been to make that case. Never mind that census data made it clear that in many states, minorities would soon be in the majority or in election-significant numbers and therefore worth long-term investment.

For 10 years, minorities have repeatedly proved themselves reliable voters for health, environment and infrastructure investment initiatives and for candidates who support them. Across the spectrum of issues, Latinos and African Americans vote in higher percentages that their white counterparts for environmental initiatives and for green candidates.

Beyond consistent pro-environment voting, African American, Latino and other organizations now include environment and environmental health-related issues. Some polls indicate that minority voters’ concern about climate change is almost double that of whites. Minority-rights-focused organizations now invest in environmental staff; training young environmental scientists, conducting their own research on climate issues; fighting for their fair share of the green jobs market; and playing an important role in solar energy investments in their communities.

Despite these pro-environment voter statistics and community environmental programs, year-round investment in educating and turning minority voters into permanent climate/environment voters still lags behind investments in other demographics. While large-scale voter registration efforts always materialize during major election cycles, few leave a permanent infrastructure behind. And with few exceptions, none are focused on creating permanent active environment voters.

While there have been advancements in strengthening relationships between environmental and civil rights organizations, creating a vibrant, diversified climate or environmental voter constituency requires continual investment in voter registration and education. Environment and climate issues are key concerns for both minority and youth voters. Give them a green reason to vote and they will turn out.

Beyond this voter engagement investment, building a permanent minority-owned and environment-focused infrastructure in communities of color will embolden community leaders and officials to take more leadership in the climate change movement. Certainly, communities of color have been and will continue to be more adversely affected by climate disasters than other demographics, so building a constituency that can respond to climate disasters is a key to building resilient communities.

Low-income communities are anxious to invest in efficiency and renewable energy programs, but are stymied for a number of reasons, including financing, access and other factors. For example, while solar rooftops have grown exponentially in southern California, FICO credit score requirements exclude many low-income families, and even if they qualify, their smaller homes are not given priority by private sector installers. These types of issues exist nationwide and need to be solved.

Finally, building a permanent integrated environmental/climate movement requires investment in the next generation of green voters, including supporting minority and low-income students to enter the green technology and STEM fields. Finally, investment in low-income schools through greening and efficiency projects, and requiring core curriculum compatible environmental and civic education will keep the movement growing.

Investment in minority and low-income voters has produced stunning environmental voter conversion rates despite low investment in voter education and infrastructure development. With 2014 environmental initiatives on the horizon, building an environmental voting bloc should be our highest priority.
Kathleen Rogers, president, Earth Day Network
Greg Moore, executive director of the NAACP National Voter Fund
Antonio Gonzales is president of the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project (SVREP). SVREP, founded in 1974, is the largest and oldest nonpartisan Latino voter organization.



Special to The Enterprise

Google, Tell Me. Is My Son a Genius?

January 21, 2014 |

By Seth Stephens-Davidowitz
More than a decade into the 21st century, we would like to think that American parents have similar standards and similar dreams for their sons and daughters. But my study of anonymous, aggregate data from Google searches suggests that contemporary American parents are far more likely to want their boys smart and their girls skinny.

It’s not that parents don’t want their daughters to be bright or their sons to be in shape, but they are much more focused on the braininess of their sons and the waistlines of their daughters.

Start with intelligence. It’s hardly surprising that parents of young children are often excited at the thought that their child may be gifted. In fact, of all Google searches starting “Is my 2-year-old,” the most common next word is “gifted.” But this question is not asked equally about young boys and young girls. Parents are two and a half times more likely to ask “Is my son gifted?” than “Is my daughter gifted?” Parents show a similar bias when using other phrases related to intelligence that they may shy away from saying aloud, like, “Is my son a genius?”

Are parents picking up on legitimate differences between young girls and boys? Perhaps young boys are more likely than young girls to use big words or otherwise show objective signs of giftedness? Nope. If anything, it’s the opposite. At young ages, when parents most often search about possible giftedness, girls have consistently been shown to have larger vocabularies and use more complex sentences. In American schools, girls are 11 percent more likely than boys to be in gifted programs. Despite all this, parents looking around the dinner table appear to see more gifted boys than girls.

Parents were more likely to ask about sons rather than daughters on every matter that I tested related to intelligence, including its absence. There are more searches for “is my son behind” or “stupid” than comparable searches for daughters. Searches with negative words like “stupid” and “behind,” however, are less skewed toward sons than searches with positive words.

What concerns do parents disproportionately have for their daughters? Primarily, anything related to appearance. Consider questions about a child’s weight. Parents Google “Is my daughter overweight?” roughly twice as frequently as they Google “Is my son overweight?” Just as with giftedness, this gender bias is not grounded in reality. About 30 percent of girls are overweight, while 33 percent of boys are. Even though scales measure more overweight boys than girls, parents see — or worry about — overweight girls much more often than overweight boys.

Parents are about twice as likely to ask how to get their daughters to lose weight as they are to ask how to get their sons to do the same. Google search data also tell us that mothers and fathers are more likely to wonder whether their daughter is “beautiful” or “ugly.”

Parents are one and a half times more likely to ask whether their daughter is beautiful than whether their son is, but they are nearly three times more likely to ask whether their daughter is ugly than whether their son is ugly. How Google is expected to know whether a child is beautiful or ugly is hard to say.

In general, parents seem more likely to use positive words in questions about sons. There is a larger bias toward asking whether sons are “tall” than “short.” Parents are more likely to ask whether a son is “happy” and slightly more likely to ask whether a daughter is “depressed.”

Liberal readers may imagine that these biases are more common in conservative parts of the country. Not so. I did not find a significant relationship between any of the biases mentioned and the political or cultural makeup of a state. These biases appear to cut across ideological divisions. In fact, I was unable to find any demographics that significantly reduced the biases. Nor is there evidence that these biases have decreased since 2004, the year for which Google search data is first available.

This methodology can also be used to study gender preference before birth. Every year, Americans make hundreds of thousands of searches asking how to conceive a child of a particular sex. In searches with the words “how to conceive,” Americans are slightly more likely to include the word “boy” than “girl.” Among the subset of Americans Googling for specific gender conception strategies, there is about a 10 percent preference for boys compared with girls.

This boy preference is surprising for two reasons. First, the top websites returned for these queries are overwhelmingly geared toward women, suggesting that women are most often making gender conception searches. Yet in surveys, women express a slight preference for having girls, not boys; men say they prefer sons. Second, many Americans are willing to admit a gender preference to even out a family. About 5 percent more boys are born than girls in the United States, so evening out a family would more often require having a girl, not a boy. Are men searching for conception advice in large numbers? Are women searching on their husbands’ behalf? Or do some American women have a son preference that they are not comfortable admitting to surveys?

Other countries exhibit very large preferences in favor of boys. In India, for each search asking how to conceive a girl, there are three-and-a-half asking how to conceive a boy. With such an overwhelming preference for boys, it is not surprising that there are millions fewer women in India than population scientists would predict.

Clearly there is more to learn. Because this data make it easy to compare different countries over time, for example, we might examine whether these gender preferences change after a woman is elected to run a country.

The disturbing results outlined here leave us with many open questions, but the most poignant may be this one: How would American girls’ lives be different if parents were half as concerned with their bodies and twice as intrigued by their minds?

Correction: January 18, 2014
Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this column misstated the number of searches in India asking how to conceive a boy in relation to the number asking how to conceive a girl; it is three-and-a-half to one, not two-and-a-half to one.

Seth Stephens-Davidowitz is a contributing opinion writer who recently received a Ph.D. in economics at Harvard.



Special to The Enterprise

Restock your potting shed: Welcome to a new season of gardening

January 18, 2014 |

Find photo in no purge/spec ed/Creators Garden spring
By Sharon Naylor

Get ready for a new season of gardening! Though you may be perusing seed and plant websites and catalogs — envisioning what you’ll grow this year — be sure to add gardening supplies to your shopping list. After so many months of being away from your potting shed or potting bench, you’re probably not aware where you’ve run low. Restocking your supplies for seeds, fertilizers and liquid plant nutrients also justifies a good shopping spree. Getting new items means better blooms. Plus, older tools may be dulled or rusted, so it may be the perfect time to upgrade to some new tools, as well.

Here is your shopping list to restock your gardening supplies:

Your metal-edged tools may be rusty or dull, and new hand-held tools are vastly improved with rubberized grips to make work easier and blisters less likely. So look for new round-edged shovels, pointy-edged shovels, long-handled spades, hoes, garden forks (with a trident or four-pronged fork edge), rakes, edgers, garden brooms, hand spades, garden claws, bulb planters, pruning shears, pocket clippers, garden hand saws, weeding knives, loppers, rose thorn strippers and tool-cleaning solutions and brushes.

If you enjoy gardening with your partner or with your kids, buy multiples of safe hand tools so that you can work together on a garden project.

Though manual tools give you a better workout, some of your trusty garden machines may be ready for retirement, including your lawn mower, leaf blower, mulcher and edger.

*Pots and Planters
You’ve stored those plastic plant pots on the bottom shelf of your potting bench long enough. Recycle or dispose of them, and invest in new and pretty pots and planters for your garden additions. Examples include terracotta pots, elongated metallic planters, colorful pots and planters, self-watering pots and planters, hanging pots with attractive chain suspension, mini pots, blocks to elevate planters, rocks for drainage in pots and fertilizer spikes.
Lifestyle blogger Tabitha Philen outlines her container sizes as follows: 16 to 24 inches (for tomatoes, zucchini and summer squash), 12 to 16 inches (for cucumbers, eggplants and beans), 10 to 12 inches (for pepper and carrots), rectangular planters (for basil and lettuce).

*Seeding Supplies
If you start plants and flowers from seed, stock up on the following: seeding trays, seeding kits, soil, ID tags, a plastic lidded container for keeping your seed packets and other plant information tags dry and safe and a calendar for keeping track of what was planted and when.

*Watering Essentials
The pretty red watering can you keep outside your front door for the deck planters may be faded by the sun. So invest in new watering cans and systems: small watering cans for indoors and outside, large watering cans for outside, watering “showerhead” attachment for your hose, sprinklers, rainwater collection barrel, rainwater gauge, watering timer, self-watering planter inserts, pails and spray bottles.

*Grass Supplies
Keep or improve your perfect green lawn, and restock your supply to be sure you have enough fresh seed and spread for your entire property. You’ll need grass seed, straw or peat moss to cover newly seeded areas, along with grass seed spreader.

*Lawn and Garden Additives
Feed your lawn and garden with new, fresh and improved materials: fertilizer for lawn, rosebushes, trees and other plants, organic pesticide pellets, spreads or sprays tailored to your particular pests (e.g., aphids and slugs), a hand-push spreader, a garden hose attachment for liquid fertilizer, compost, garden pebbles and rocks, decorative garden stones and boulders, mulch in your chosen color and material (fresh is best because bagged, stored mulch may have developed fungus and mold), a composting bin and lots of fresh garden soil.

*Garden Supplies
For use in your vegetable and herb gardens: a tomato trellis, a bean trellis, garden stakes, garden tape or ties for trellises or stakes, garden twine, garden ID sticks or signs, a raised bed, planting barrels, anti-weed layer, a basket for gathering harvest items, garden gloves, garden boots or shoes, a gardening hat, a low garden bench, padded mats for kneeling, a rolling garden tool caddy, tarps and burlap rolls to cover plants in a cold snap, summer-weight garden covers and garden decor.
Add a gardener’s first-aid kit to your potting shed in case of a cut or scrape, and also stock bug spray and sunscreen nearby. And because some garden work will require heavy lifting, invest in a quality wheelbarrow with sturdy rubberized handles to cart hefty items and bags of mulch or fertilizer. A Velcro-affixing lower-back support wrap will also protect you from lifting injuries.
A new potting bench may be on your wish list, as well, which many gardeners say gives new life to their passion, with organized shelves and drawers and lots of display and work space. And a small greenhouse setup is also a bigger-ticket item on gardeners’ wish lists. A new structure could make an entirely new crop or flower possible this year.



Special to The Enterprise

YOLO 2014 festivals

January 9, 2014 |

From YoloCVB

Hot August Nights at Mojo’s in Woodland ~ May 16 through Summertime ~ Woodland: Vintage cars, live music, great food and drink every third Thursday ~ roll on in!

14th Annual Woodland Hot Rod Reunion ~ June 9 ~ Woodland: Classic cars, motorcycles, music, entertainment, all at the fair grounds.

Second Friday Art About, Davis – 2nd Friday ArtAbout is a monthly evening of art viewing and artists’ receptions at galleries and businesses in Downtown Davis and beyond. Coordinated by the Davis Downtown, all events are free and open to the public. Many include complimentary refreshments and opportunities to converse with featured artists. For more information about the Davis Downtown and 2nd Friday ArtAbout, visit

Square Tomatoes Crafts Fair, Davis, monthly every 2nd Sunday. Come to Central Park (3rd and C Streets) from 11 to 4 for a free celebration of creativity. Enjoy an afternoon of live music, hands on crafts instruction for visitors of all ages, food booths, and over forty craft vendors. Expect the unexpected—farm feed bags upcycled into shopping bags, jewelry with silver jazz cats and spirit foxes, record clocks, and more. See and also look on Facebook.

California Duck Days – Held in February, this is one of California’s premier wildlife viewing festivals, offering a wide variety of activities, including more than 40 field trips, workshops, an art show, demonstrations, and more. (530) 758-1018.

Annual Petite Sirah Port Weekend – Spend Valentine’s Day weekend at Bogle Winery, where you can sample ports both from the bottle and the barrel as well as enjoy Stilton, strawberries, and lots of chocolate! (916) 744-1139.

Capay Valley Almond Festival – This is the only event in Northern California held simultaneously in five towns; it’s an outstanding showcase of the riches you can find in the Capay Valley region. Held in n March, you will enjoy all things almond blossom, great food, music, and wine! (530) 787-3242.

Annual Art of Painting in the 21st Century Conference – Featuring educational demonstrations and exhibits in downtown Davis every March. (530) 756-3938.

Native American Cultural Days – A time in April to celebrate the vast culture and traditions of the Native American people. (530)752-4287.

Picnic Day – A Davis tradition since 1909, this one-day event in April features a parade, battle of the bands between college bands, several music and dance stages, an assortment of academic exhibits, the singular Dachshund Derby, and much more! (530) 752-6320.

Asian Pacific Cultural Week – A week-long event in April designed to educate the public about the culture and traditions of the Asian Pacific culture. (530)752-4287.

Youth Day – Held every April since 1933, this day begins with a parade featuring floats made by local youth winding through historic downtown Winters. After the parade the city park fills with booths, crafts, music, and entertainment. (530) 297-1901.

Woodland Scottish Festival & Games – Modeled after the traditional gatherings of Scots in their homeland, this epic weekend festival features Olympic-style heavy athletics, music from pipe bands to Celtic rock, Highland dancing, sheep dog trials, historical reenactments, British cars, and more. Every April in Woodland, more than 135 years running. (916) 557-0764.

La Raza Cultural Days – This celebration of Latino culture in April begins with a fair, live music, and traditional foods. The week continues with art exhibits, political forums, seminars, and films. (530) 752-2027.

May Festival – Spend the day touring the Gibson Mansion, shopping at artisan’s booths, and strolling the Museum’s gardens. This festival takes place on the 3rd Sunday in May. (530) 666-1045.

California Conference for the Advancement of Ceramic Art – The long-time, well-attended ceramic sculpture event incorporates demonstrations, lectures, shows, and exhibits throughout many venues in downtown Davis. Every May. (530) 756-3938.

Whole Earth Festival – Held every Mother’s Day Weekend in May, this festival has been a tradition since 1970 featuring eco-friendly ways of life. Festival grounds feature music, drum circles, booths, henna tattoos, informational booths, numerous performances, and more. (530) 752-2569.

Black Family Week – This May celebration promotes an understanding, awareness, and commemoration of the cultural, social, and educational achievements of the African American community. (530) 752-6620.

Gourd Art Festival – This annual May event features gourd art, classes, demonstrations, and live music. (530) 753-6677.

Pence Gallery Garden Tour – For more than 20 years, the Pence Garden Tour has provided the public with the opportunity to view up to 10 beautiful gardens. Visitors in the past have enjoyed Japanese gardens, art-filled yards, and xeriscapes filled with native grasses. This self-guided tour is a ticketed event, taking place on the first Sunday in May. (530) 758-3370.

Cache Creek Lavender Festival – An annual celebration in June of all things lavender. During the festival you’ll find live music, wine tasting with local vineyards, food, lavender products and u-pick lavender, field tours and talks, craft demonstrations, and more! (530) 796-2239.



YOLO 2014 intro

January 09, 2014 |

Yolo County is tucked away between Lake Tahoe and San Francisco, but it is a world apart. Boasting a variety of experiences — from bike paths lined with lush greenery, strolling through parks, shopping in historic districts, art walks, cultural events, adventure sports, to name a few — the vibrant cities of Davis, Winters and Woodland, along with the outlying communities in the picturesque countryside, have something to offer all year.

Explore natural beauty by touring verdant farmlands or walking quiet creek-side trails. Enjoy great entertainment, from intimate theaters to the world-class stage of the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. Sample an abundance of carefully crafted local wine, stroll farmers markets famous for their selection and freshness and enjoy just about any cuisine under the sun at one of many fine restaurants.

History buffs will find much to discover in Yolo County, as will adventurers, nature lovers, families, art aficionados, sports fans, music enthusiasts and even canine companions!
Davis has many attractions to keep you busy while exploring Yolo County — a lively downtown with interesting restaurants, art galleries and retail shops; more than 100 miles of bike paths and lanes; the twice-weekly Davis Farmers Market (voted best Farmers Market by American Farmland Trust), the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame; live music and theater; 100 acres of plants and trees at the UC Davis Arboretum; and of course, internationally-renowned UC Davis itself.

Winters is a small yet accessible town, surrounded by fields and orchards, with a booming art scene and historic charm. Many delights await you: art galleries; antique stores; live musical performances at The Palms Playhouse in the historic Winters Opera House; wine tasting; and great local cuisine.

Woodland is full of historical and agricultural treasures. Enjoy farm tours, great theater at the Woodland Opera House and the Heidrick Ag History Center with more than 130,000 square feet of exhibit space. The city of Woodland also offers beautiful examples of Victorian and Craftsman style houses in the historic center of town. Or just outside of town catch one of the many themed train rides on the Sacramento River Train. Woodland also hosts many fun-filled festivals and events throughout the year, from the Woodland Scottish Games in April to the Stroll Through History in September.

Incorporated Yolo County is full of charm and surprises. To the northwest, you’ll discover the fertile Capay Valley and the serene little towns of Esparto, Capay, Brooks and Rumsey. Orchards and vineyards fill the valley floor; keep going and you come to Cache Creek, a great place for fishing and, in summertime, white water rafting. To the southeast you’ll find beautiful Clarksburg, home to nine winery tasting rooms in the Old Sugar Mill, as well as prizing-winning Bogle Vineyards. In summer, the Mill plays hosts to outdoor concerts. Elsewhere you can take part in farm tours, relax in cozy bed-and-breakfast inns, and take part in fairs and festivals year-round. Come to Yolo County — you’ll love it here!
Here’s your guide to explore Yolo County as if you’ll only live once! It’s organized alphabetically and concentrates on things to do, see and experience in Davis, Woodland, Winters, West Sacramento and nearby Sacramento, and the smaller towns throughout the county.

— The Yolo County Visitors Bureau,, contributed to this story.



YOLO 2014 bikes

January 8, 2014 |

From Yolo CVB
Why Davis is a Bicycle Friendly City

Because the agricultural land around the City of Davis is flat, riding a bicycle has always been an easy way to get around town. After the city incorporated in 1917, the increasing number of paved roads encouraged local citizens to take up cycling. University of California students have been coming to Davis since 1908 and bicycling has always been an important part of their campus experience.
After acknowledging that the well-educated and well-traveled citizenry would be receptive to European-style bikeways, the Davis City Council decided in 1967 to create a few short blocks of bicycle lanes. As a result, Davis became the first city in the United States to install official city bicycle lanes.
The combined system of bicycle lanes and dedicated bike paths today reaches well over 100 miles in a small town that is about 11 square miles. Davis has become a model for hundreds of U.S. cities because of its safe, integrated bicycle transportation network. The UC Davis campus has developed its own extensive bicycle path system, support programs and infrastructure including numerous roundabouts.
Over the years Davis has become even more pro-bicycling in its planning and policies as well as promotional events, educational programs and infrastructure. Although it’s impossible to confirm, the urban legend is that there are more bicycles in Davis than the 64,000 citizens.
The 2010 U.S. Census Bureau count revealed that Davis had the highest percentage of bicycle commuters in the U.S. An estimated 22.1% of the working population commuted to their job using a bicycle. The Davis’ Bicycle Plan aims to increase the amount of bicycle trips as a percentage of all trips made in town to 25%.
For over forty five years, Davis has had one of the highest levels of per capita bicycle use in the country. Bike lanes and trails permeate the community and enable people of all ages to ride to school, work, for recreation and errands. Davis is the only city in the United States that features a high-wheeled bicycle in its city logo.
Other bicycle support includes: police officers on bicycles, May is Bike Month activities, bike to work and school events, bicycle auctions, bike rodeos, free bike fixit stands, printed and online bike maps, city staff responsible for bicycle infrastructure and programs, a citizen Bicycle Advisory Commission, ten active bicycle shops (including the UC Davis Bike Barn) and an active hand-built bicycle frame building community.
Other Davis bicycling milestones include:
The permanent home of the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame. The museum opened April 2010 featuring community events and education, a speakers program, Hall of Fame memorabilia and museum bicycles from the historic Pierce Miller collection.
Davis was the first city in the U. S. to install bicycle signal heads on traffic lights.
The Livestrong Foundation has produced successful Livestrong Challenge bicycle events in Davis.
The 2010 Davis High School stadium renovation included the Steve Larsen Bicycle Plaza. Spectators can now easily ride and park their bikes when attending football games, track meets and graduation ceremonies.
Bicycle path “Loops” around the community are identified by painted symbols. A local “Loopalooza” event helps publicize safe routes to schools.
Davis has hosted stage starts of the Amgen Tour of California professional bicycle race.
The Davis Bike Club is one of the most active bicycling clubs in the U.S. It produces bicycle tours and races such as the Davis Double Century (for over 42 years), the 4th of July Criterium (over 35 years) and Foxy’s Fall Century (over 35 years).
Davis features advocacy groups such as Davis Bicycles! and the Davis Bike Collective with its “Bike Forth” bicycle shop
The UC Davis Cycling intercollegiate racing team is a collegiate cycling powerhouse. The men and women’s team captured the 2009 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championship.
The Davis Farmer’s Market “Farm to School Program” holds an annual “Tour de Cluck” bicycle tour of backyard chicken coops to support the “fresh food in school meals” initiative.
The Davis Odd Fellows created the “World’s Greatest Bicycle Parade.” Begun in 2010, it raises thousands of dollars for local public schools.
Some hotels provide loaner bicycyles for their guests
The American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) encourages participants to ride bicycles to all games and practices.
Davis was proudly named the first platinum Bicycle Friendly City in October 2005 by the League of American Bicyclists. The city’s recent sustainability efforts have also ensured that bicycling is recognized as an effective tool for lowering our carbon footprint, improving air quality, benefiting public health and reducing childhood obesity.
Bicycling is part of the city’s economic development strategy. Downtown businesses have requested that some vehicle parking spaces be removed and replaced with on-street bicycle corrals full of racks. Replacing a parking spot with bike racks has become an inexpensive way to handle more shoppers and downtown workers.
Local realtors tout the proximity of homes to bicycle paths that lead to schools, shopping and the university knowing that the bike paths increase property values. Some Davis realtors tour homes with their clients on bicycles.
Entrepreneurs and businesses are concerned about quality of life and they locate in Davis because of the good schools, educated workforce and because it is a safe, bike-able community for their employees and families. Some Davis businesses provide lockers and showers for their employees, covered bicycle parking for clients and sponsor employee bicycling teams.
When the City of Davis turns 100 years old in 2017, high-wheeled bicycles will still be riding in the annual UC Davis Picnic Day parade. In the next century, you can count on bicycling being an increasingly important part of the fabric of the Davis community.
For more information, contact the Bicycle & Pedestrian Coordinator, Dave “DK” Kemp at:

~ Written by Bob Bowen, Public Relations Coordinator, City of Davis (c) 2012



Aggie forwar

January 4, 2014 |

At first blush, a 2.4-point scoring average with a rebound or two a game aren’t eye-popping numbers.

But for Aggie forward Lauren Beyer, just being able to walk properly — let alone contribute on the basketball court — is a warm sports story.

It was November 2011 when the Elk Grove native went down in a heap during a win over visiting San Jose State.

The 6-foot-1 former Bradshaw Christian High standout was chasing down a rebound when she hit the floor awkwardly. The then-freshman’s right leg buckled.

The resulting injury was catastrophic.

Diagnosis: ACL, MCL and meniscus tears, a broken tibia that had struck her femur, causing further, upper-leg damage. Torn tendons in her ankle.

Singularly, any of the injuries would have sent her to the sidelines for a year.

Together, they might have folded the spirit of even the strongest woman.

No one was concerned about the McDonald’s Prep All-American nominee returning to basketball. The hope was she’d be up and around, just continue a normal life.

Fast forward to Nov. 26 In the fourth game of this season: there was UC Davis’ No. 11 — yes, that No. 11 — back on the court, a bulky, long black brace on her leg. Nonetheless she contributed 10 points in a 95-61 rout of those same SJS Spartans.

It’s been several surgeries and two years later, hundreds of days of rehabilitation and certainly more than 1,000 hours of physical therapy and training…

But Lauren Beyer has made it all the way back.

“I had no doubts that I’d return,” Beyer told The Enterprise this weekend. “My confidence was (often) low in trying to come back, sure. But I never had any doubts that I was going to return.”

Along the way, it helped that her good friend and roommate Sydnee Fipps was there to provide encouragement.

“Lauren is super-special on and off the court,” the Aggies leading scorer Fipps says. “She’s worked so hard. With that injury, I know (most) people weren’t thinking she was going to come back.

“But she did. Lauren’s been an inspiration to all of us. We see her putting in all that work and we have to reward her … we have to play hard for her.”

And lately she’s been playing hard for her teammates.

In last month’s 84-78 loss to Sacramento State, Beyer kept the Aggies in the game with 8 points, two blocks and two assists.

Her 19 minutes in the game was the most action she’s seen in her interrupted career — and UCD coach Jennifer Gross says the Remarkable Miss Beyer can now be a contributor as Big West Conference play starts Thursday at home versus Cal State Northridge.

“We’re getting quality time from Lauren,” Gross reported after the CSUS game. “She’s getting her timing back and is coming on.”

Gross continued…

“To have gone through what she has and still be so determined and positive is something. I have nothing but respect for Lauren and she is really helping the team.”

The spirit, work ethic and re-emerging talent of Beyer makes “our team very fortunate to have her back on the court,” Gross emphasized.

Despite the injury, Beyer has never ventured far from her Aggie sisters.

During rehab, she attended practices, often heading over to the ARC for rehabilitation sessions.

Then she was on the bench during games.

But it hurt not being in the fray. It hurt not being able to travel with the squad. It hurt getting that darn right leg back to playing status.

Fipps, says Beyer, was instrumental in helping her during the tough spots.

Fipps and Beyer came to campus together two years ago after playing AAU basketball for the NorCal Elite.

Fipps, while at Yosemite (Mariposa) High, had suffered an ACL injury and knows all about extensive comeback campaigns.

“Sydnee has had quite a few injuries herself,” Beyer explains. “So we can relate. I could always ask her questions like ‘Hey, were you feeling this type of pain when you were going through rehab?’”

Beyer says Fipps would answer, “‘Yeah,’” and then add “That I’d be OK, so I thought, ‘cool.’

“She helped pushed me through. She was always there for me and I’m always there for her.”

Beyer has “a lot of great people surrounding me.”

Dad Mark and mom Jani encouraged their daughter. After all, if anyone knew how determined and tough Lauren was, it would be her parents.

In her years at Bradshaw Christian (where Jani is now the principal), The Pride won four Sac-Joaquin Section D-IV basketball titles. Beyer also played soccer, where BCH won three SJS crowns.

Great teammates, her family (including little brother Kevin) and trainer Lisa Varnum, who Beyer says “spent every day with her,” encouraged, pushed and pulled for a full recovery.


“Honestly, my leg feels as strong as it was before,” Beyer reports.

And there are handfuls of life lessons to be learned from Lauren’s long and winding road back to Hamilton Court.

“You’re going to have some hard times. I definitely had some breakdowns,” the personable exercise biology major explains. “But you have to surround yourself with good people and keep thinking positive thoughts like ‘I’m going to get through this. I’m going to push.’

“You have to think of the rewards and how great it’s going to be once you’re through it.”

Well, Lauren, you’ve done it!

Notes: Beyer’s dad is a correctional official and 17-year-old brother Kevin plays three sports at Bradshaw. …”She’s doing a great job,” says UCD assistant coach Joe Teramoto. “But even if she wasn’t doing a great job, just the fact that she’s back is really amazing. You can see the team is inspired by her being back — and playing well.” …Beyer is a junior in the classroom, but a sophomore on the court. She told The Enterprise she’ll continue with UCD basketball “as long as I can.” …The recent winter break has given the Aggies a chance to rest off the court: “Everybody is catching up with something,” says Beyer. “I’m really obsessed with ‘Gray’s Anatomy,’ Sydnee and (Kelsey) Harris are watching ‘Scandal’ and Celia (Marfone) likes to bake. When we get together as a group, we’ll be watching (TV) and Celia will be over there making banana bread.” …Beyer (elbow) missed the win over Simpson on Thursday, but should be ready for the Jan. 9 Big West opener versus Cal State Northridge at The Pavilion. 



Bruce Gallaudet

How to evaluate an aging person’s needs

December 31, 2013 |

Holidays are filled with quality time with family, a situation that can bring to light the increasing and changing needs of aging parents and family members. After the holiday season, senior living communities such as Palm Gardens in Woodland see a rise in inquiries from concerned family members looking for help and answers for their aging loved ones.

“When a visit home leaves a loved one concerned about an aging family member’s health, safety and quality of life, it may be time to evaluate the situation and determine what accommodations or care are necessary in the coming year,” said Sarah Landis for Palm Gardens.

How can you tell when seniors might need the care of a senior living community, and what kind of community is best for them? Palm Gardens offers these tips for both evaluating if its time to make inquires, and where to inquire.

* Depression or low mood. How are they emotionally? Do you observe changes in their activity level? Are they seeing friends and partaking in activities they have loved for years?

* Weight loss. Do they show decreased appetite or lack of interest in food and cooking? Illness or mobility issues could be keeping them from eating properly.

* Decreased personal care. Are they taking care of themselves physically? Look to see if they are keeping up with basic daily routines such as bathing, brushing teeth and wearing clean clothes.

* Unkempt home. What shape is the home in? Watch for stained carpets, un-emptied garbage, soiled counters and floors. If the home needs cleaning and repair, the job might be more than seniors can handle without help.

* Loss of mobility. Are they having difficulty moving around their home, or going up and down stairs? Having trouble walking or being unsteady on their feet not only limits mobility but also puts them at risk for falls.

* Personality changes. Are you noticing different attitudes and habits? Memory loss, difficulty in performing familiar tasks, poor judgment, misplacing items, disorientation, rapid mood swings, increased apathy or passiveness are all early warning signs of Alzheimer’s. A doctor’s evaluation can help determine the cause and treatment of these symptoms.

It is important to understand the many choices that make up the new face of senior living in the 21st century. Here is a breakdown defining the differences in the level of senior living options offered.

* In independent living communities, active older adults continue to enjoy private dwellings, control over their own schedules, and freedom to come and go as they choose. Social networking, optional events, special interest clubs, and conveniently located services may be offered on site, as well as medical, dietary and other assistance when needed.

An assisted living residence offers much of the freedom of an independent living community with a special combination of housing, personalized support services and health care designed to meet the needs — both scheduled and unscheduled — of those who require help with daily activities.

* Memory care communities provide specially trained staff, secure facilities and cognitive and physical therapies to help soothe and relieve those with Alzheimer’s and other related dementia illnesses.

If you have questions about senior care or helping an elderly loved one, call Landis at Palm Gardens at 530-661-0574.



Special to The Enterprise

December 19, 2013 |


(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — More intensive screening to identify firearm owners among individuals who are subject to domestic violence restraining orders, and streamlining processes to recover guns at the time those restraining orders are served could help enforce existing laws that prohibit these offenders from having firearms, a pilot study conducted by violence prevention experts at the University of California, Davis, and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health has found.

The initiative, developed by law enforcement officers in San Mateo County and Butte County in California with consultation from the California Department of Justice and study authors, developed and assessed processes that could potentially improve firearm-recovery rates among individuals with domestic violence restraining orders. The study was published online Dec. 12 in the American Journal of Public Health.

“Intimate partner violence is a significant threat to the public’s health and safety, especially for women, and firearms play a prominent role,” said Garen Wintemute, director of the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program and lead author of the study.

“Women are at least twice as likely to be murdered by partners using a firearm than by strangers using any weapon,” he said. “Abusers with firearms are five to eight times more likely to kill their victims than those without firearms. Firearm-owning abusers also are nearly 8 times more likely to threaten partners with firearms. We need to do more to disarm known offenders to prevent violence.”

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation crime database, an estimated 1,127 women were murdered and some 605,000 were assaulted by their partners in the U.S. in 2011. In addition, nearly 36 percent of U.S. women participating in the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey said they have experienced violence at some time in their lives.

“Existing federal and state statutes addressing firearm possession among individuals subject to domestic violence restraining orders are one step in assuring that people who are violent toward their intimate partners don’t have access to guns,” said Shannon Frattaroli, faculty with the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research and a study co-author. “Our study is instructive for states and localities interested in assuring those laws are enforced.”

Currently, federal and state statutes prohibit the purchase and possession of firearms by persons subject to domestic violence restraining orders. Many states authorize or require courts to order offenders to surrender their firearms for the duration of the order. But these statutes are not enough, even in states with particularly strict requirements, the authors say.

In California, for example, offenders must surrender their firearms to a law enforcement agency or sell them to a licensed firearms retailer within 24 hours after the order is served, and file a receipt with the court to document compliance within 48 hours. Since 2007, they also must surrender their firearms immediately if a law enforcement officer makes a demand for them.

Yet, it has been difficult to enforce these laws, beyond preventing offenders from purchasing firearms from licensed retailers.

“Identifying armed offenders and recovering their firearms in a timely, comprehensive and efficient manner is a challenge,” Wintemute said. “Some restraining orders are never served. Records of firearm ownership are incomplete. Owners may simply deny possessing firearms, and it may be impossible to determine if they are telling the truth. But it is possible to begin developing broad recommendations for implementation that can be tailored to the specific circumstances of states and counties across the country.”

For the study, Wintemute and colleagues at UC Davis and the Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, worked with local detectives to track their efforts to identify and disarm individuals with firearms among those served with domestic violence restraining orders in San Mateo County between May 2007 and June 2010 and in Butte County between April 2008 and June 2010.

During this time, San Mateo County detectives reviewed 6,024 restraining orders on 2,973 individuals and linked 525 perpetrators to firearms (17.7 percent overall, 19.7 percent for males and 8.3 percent for females), which resulted in 119 offenders surrendering one or more of their firearms. Of the estimated 1,978 restraining orders that Butte County detectives reviewed, they served and maintained records on 305 orders to 283 respondents. Among those 283 respondents the detectives identified 88 offenders with links to firearms (31.1 percent overall, 33.3 percent for males and 16.3 percent for females) and recovered one or more firearms from 45 offenders. Almost all recovered firearms in both counties (622 of 665) were taken into custody by law enforcement agencies, with the remainder being sold to licensed retailers.

“In this study, firearm transaction records and court documents each identified only 40 percent to 50 percent of offenders with firearms,” Wintemute said. “With only 10 states archiving any firearm transaction records for 10 years or longer, most states will need to rely on court records and interviews with victims.”

In addition to using all available sources of information to identify firearm owners, the authors found that it was important to ensure that the personnel who serve domestic violence restraining orders to individuals who own or possess firearms are able to recover those firearms at the time the order is served. They also recommend having search warrants available when an offender believed to possess firearms does not surrender them.

“This study represents a step in the right direction, but larger-scale studies will be needed to determine optimal procedures for screening and recovering firearms, assessing the incidence of adverse events and determining the effects on rates of violence,” Wintemute said.

Co-authors of the study also include Barbara E. Claire of the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program and Katherine Vittes and Daniel W. Webster from the Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

December 6, 2013 |

A look at recent books by UC Davis authors:

* “Wonder and Delight: A Dolph Gotelli Christmas” by Dolph Gotelli (, $75, 360 pages). Known as “Father Christmas,” UC Davis environmental design professor emeritus Dolph Gotelli has now featured his collection of toys and Christmas memorabilia in a book containing 570 color photos suitable for any holiday coffee table. For decades, Gotelli has mounted a number of museum exhibitions using toys from his collection — and this book gives everyone a chance to view them.

* “The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives” by Sasha Abramsky (Perseus Books, $26, 329 pages). Looking at long-term poor and the working poor, Abramsky, a UC Davis lecturer and freelance journalist, looks at the tens of millions of people whose lives are shaped by financial insecurity. Ultimately, he suggests ways “for moving toward a fairer and more equitable social contract.”

The New York Times Book Review just named the book one of the 100 notable books of the year.

* “Lost & Found: American Treasures from the New Zealand Film Archive” by Scott Simmon (Treasures from the American Film Archives, National Film Preservation Foundation, $24.98). Those hoping to catch a movie during their extra time off this season should seek out this DVD and accompanying 56-page booklet. In just over three hours, an anthology of silent films thought to be have been lost forever can now be viewed at home. The set features the work of such well-known directors as John Ford and Alfred Hitchcock.

Simmon, an English professor who works at the intersection of film scholarship, archiving and access, has previously completed four of these critically acclaimed anthologies for the National Film Preservation Foundation. These collections have included such diverse themes as “The West” and social issues in American film. Altogether, his DVD sets make available 201 films preserved by the U.S. Public Archives.

* “Smarty Marty’s Got Game” by Amy Gutierrez (Cameron & Co., $17.95, 40 pages). This children’s book shatters stereotypes for girls in sports and tells the story of a character named Marty, who teaches the game and her love of baseball to her younger brother. Gutierrez, a 16-year career sports journalist who covers the San Francisco Giants, is a 1995 UCD graduate of the Department of Communications.

* “Song of Siwa: the Marzuk-Iskander Festival” by Louis Grivetti (XLIBRIS, $16.36, 242 pages). Louis Grivetti, professor emeritus of nutrition, worked at the Siwa and Qara oases of Egypt during the mid-1960s, and wrote this fictional epic to honor the residents of these remote desert areas.

With many elements based on historical events, it relates the transcribed oral tradition of a band of early Stone Age hunters, led by Marzuk, who fled southwestern Europe, crossed the Mediterranean Sea to North Africa and ultimately reached safe haven in Siwa. It culminates with the visit of Iskander (Alexander the Great) to Siwa oasis, an event still revered at the oasis today.

The book is illustrated by Alison Smith, a multidisciplinary visual artist, singer, and performer.

* “The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832” by Alan Taylor (WW Norton & Co., $35, 624 pages). This Pulitzer prize-winning UC Davis history professor brings to light the untold stories of slaves who used war to escape slavery, and when newly freed, helped free others. Taylor focuses on the relationship between slave owners and enslaved people in the period between the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812, often called “the second American Revolution.”

The book is a finalist for the National Book Award.

* “One Hundred Apocalypses and Other Apocalypses” by Lucy Corin (McSweeney’s, $17, 192 pages). A collection of short stories by Corin, a UC Davis associate professor of English, illuminates moments of vexation and crisis, revelations and revolutions. An apocalypse might come in the form of the end of a relationship or the end of the world. Writes the publisher: “At once mournful and explosively energetic, ‘One Hundred Apocalypses and Other Apocalypses’ makes manifest the troubled conscience of an uneasy time.”

* “Representing the Good Neighbor: Music, Difference, and the Pan American Dream,” by Carol A. Hess (Oxford University press, 49.95, 336 pages). This is the first book, according to the publisher, to examine in detail the critical reception of Latin American music in the United States. The author, a UC Davis associate professor of music, compares the work of three of the most prominent Latin American composers: Carlos Chavez, Heitor Villa-Lobos and Alberto Ginastera, with new biographical information on each.

* “Courtesans, Concubines and the Cult of Female Fidelity” by Beverly Bossler (Harvard-Yenching Institute Monograph Series, $36, 480 pages). Bossler, a professor of history, specializes in the study of society, family and gender in China. Her most recent book traces the influence of commercialization and entertainment on gender relations in China in the 10th to 14th centuries.

Bossler illustrates how women intersected and interacted with men, influencing the social, political, and intellectual life of the Song and Yuan dynasties.

* “Stem Cells: An Insider’s Guide” by Paul Knoepfler (World Scientific Publishing, $29, 360 pages). This book offers a guided tour through the awe, science and controversy of stem cell research. A true insider, Knoepfler is an associate professor of cell biology and human anatomy at UC Davis School of Medicine whose research focuses on stem cell and cancer cell biology. He also was treated for cancer a few years ago (though not with stem cells). His science interest came later in life — he has an undergraduate degree is in English literature. The book is informative, accessible and even entertaining.

* “Eating Right in America: The Cultural Politics of Food and Health” by Charlotte Biltekoff (Duke University Press, $22.95 paperback, $79.95 cloth cover, 224 pages). Biltekoff, formerly a chef at the acclaimed San Francisco restaurant “Greens” and now an assistant professor of cultural studies, and food science and technology at UCD, critiques dietary reform in the United States from the late 19th century emergence of nutritional science through the contemporary alternative food movement and campaign against obesity.

She says she intends not to change eating habits but rather to “illuminate the politics of dietary health in America, so we can better understand what happens when we define good diets, talk about eating right or try to improve peoples’ eating habits.”

* “Making the News: Politics, The Media and Agenda Setting” by Amber Boydstun (University of Chicago Press, $25, 280 pages). In her book, this assistant professor of political science looks at how the media can influence public policy and what makes policy issues resonate with the media. The publisher says: “Boydstun documents this systemic explosiveness and skew through analysis of media coverage across policy issues, including in-depth looks at the waxing and waning of coverage around two issues: capital punishment and the ‘war on terror.’”

* “Prometheus Reimagined: Technology, Environment, and Law in the Twenty-first Century” by Albert C. Lin (University of Michigan Press, $75, 316 pages). Lin, a professor of law, asks how governance institutions should adapt when innovation evolves faster than lawmaking and calls for a more democratic approach to technology regulation. Lin specializes in environmental and natural resources law. He is a former attorney for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.

— UC Davis News



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

GG4: Change up your holiday decor the holidays

December 06, 2013 |

File name on APEXCHANGE for photos: BC-US–Homes-Designer-Imaginative Holiday/922

By Melissa Rayworth

The holiday season is synonymous with tradition. But that doesn’t mean you have to fill your home with the same holiday decorations in the same color scheme every year.

“Until four years ago, I was Scrooge-y when it came to holiday decorating — a result of seeing the same old thing over and over again,” says Brian Patrick Flynn, a Los Angeles-based interior designer and executive producer of’s “Holiday House.”

But after finding ways to “reinvent the look and feel of Christmas for my own home,” Flynn says he “rediscovered how much fun seasonal styling can be when you make it your own.”

Here he and two other design experts — Jon Call of Mr. Call Designs and Betsy Burnham of Burnham Design — offer suggestions on shaking up holiday decorating.


Call’s family takes a creative approach to Christmas stockings: On the night before Christmas Eve, they make new stockings by sewing together large pieces of felt (inexpensive at any craft store) using a simple blanket stitch.

“We let our imaginations fly when it comes to decorating the outsides, and top off each one with our name and the year,” he says. “Making these stockings gives us all something to do the night before Christmas (Eve), and we share memories and laughter along the way.”


A Christmas tree doesn’t have to stay parked in one place. Flynn recommends putting a small tree on wheels (maybe in a vintage metal wagon or an old metal washtub with casters on the bottom) so you can change its location when you’re entertaining to create space or to bring extra holiday style to a different room.

Another option is ditching red and green tree decorations for an understated color palette.

“This year I created a tone-on-tone tree using all shades of light gray,” Flynn says. “To do this right, it’s all about having a balance of texture, finish, shape, scale and proportion.”

Try a white tree if you’ll be using light colors and neutrals, or a green tree with decorations in earth tones.

To shake up your tree’s decorations, Call suggests going with a theme.

“Last year for a client, I indulged in masses of vintage mercury-glass ornaments of all sizes and shapes. Silver was literally dripping off the tree. It was spectacular,” he says. “This year we are changing it up a bit and creating a completely edible tree, including childhood favorites such as homemade popcorn balls, small sacks of chocolates tied with a ribbon and hung from the branches, and pungent gingerbread.”


If you have minimal space, Call says you can skip the tree altogether without losing any holiday cheer. Instead, cluster together a bunch of white poinsettias. They set a holiday tone in a fresh way, he says, and in a large group look “almost like snowfall.”

Or create your own “tree” out of branches: “In my kitchen, I love to fill a large galvanized pot with armfuls of branches full of red berries,” Call says. “As the season progresses, I simply clip incoming cards to the arrangement so that everyone can enjoy. It’s become a tradition over the years, and everyone loves to come and check out my ‘family tree.’”


Christmas doesn’t just happen in your living room. Flynn suggests adding a tiny tree to any space, even a breakfast nook.

To spice up a staircase, he created a garland out of “old men’s flannel and denim shirts cut and stitched” into pennant squares with tiny pockets. Strung together, they create a colorful advent calendar (mark all 25 days with sew-on varsity letters). Each one can hold a tiny gift and “add life and activity to an otherwise humdrum space.”

And for a new twist on outdoor decorating, Burnham suggests investing in a professional decorating service to string your outdoor trees with white lights. “I don’t mean drape lights over branches. I mean really wrap the trunk and every branch,” she says.

She had this done at her Los Angeles home several years ago and is still impressed with the look. “It is the most spectacular thing when I light the trees up at night, and it’s something I would have never been able to do myself,” she says. “The lights haven’t needed changing or redoing, and it’s been a couple of years now.”


“One of the most searched-for terms on is ‘mantel decorating,’” Flynn says. For homes with a flat-panel TV mounted above the mantel, he has a high-tech idea: Burn images to DVD that coordinate with the accessories you lay out on your mantel, then let the DVD run during holiday entertaining.

For one project, Flynn displayed colorful pop art images (including a reindeer by artist Jonathan Fenske) on the TV, and then put colorful items like candy in apothecary jars and brightly colored ornaments on the mantel “to make it all pop.”

Call agrees there’s no need to hold back with color: “The holidays are a time for indulgence, and that always means color to me,” he says. “Commit to a color scheme and go for broke!”

Tradition definitely has its place. But it can coexist with bursts of creativity and playfulness.

“It’s OK to bust out the old red and green,” Flynn says. “Just change it up somehow to make it more exciting.”



The Associated Press

GG4: 30 easy eats for fuss-free holiday entertaining

December 06, 2013 |

(File name in APEXCHANGE to get photos: BC-US–Food-Easy Holiday Party Food/947)

By Alison Ladman

Fantasizing about throwing a big holiday bash but fearful you’ll spend the whole party — or worse, the whole week — in the kitchen prepping? We’ve got you covered.

We’ve assembled an easy mix-and-match approach to holiday entertaining. An hour or so of prep and you’ll have enough nibbles to feed a crowd in high style.

Here’s how it works: We’ve divided the menu into 10 “base” ingredients. Each ingredient is paired with three simple suggestions for dressing it up for the party. All you need to do is pick enough base ingredients to feed your crowd, then decide how you’d like to prepare each. A little shopping, a little prepping, then you’re ready to party.

Many of these options make easy dips, spreads or other toppings for bread, so when you make that trip to the grocer, round out the menu with a variety of crackers and baguettes or pita bread that can be sliced and toasted.



— Top a round of brie with purchased fig jam and toasted pecans.

— Top slices of brie on a platter with a quick fresh herb sauce (puree 1/2 cup parsley, 1/2 cup chives and 1/4 cup cilantro with 1/4 cup olive oil and 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, season with salt and black pepper).

— Place a round of brie in a small, shallow baking dish. Bake at 250 F for 10 minutes, then top with fresh berries and drizzle with warmed orange marmalade.



— Spread on slices of baguette, then broil for 2 minutes or until lightly browned. Top with sliced strawberries and black pepper.

— Stuff into Peppadew or sweet cherry peppers.

— Top a log of goat cheese with crumbled bacon and thinly sliced scallions.



— Skewer cubes of manchego with Castelvetrano olives and grape tomatoes.

— Stuff pitted dates with a piece of manchego, then wrap each date with half a slice of prosciutto. Broil for 3 to 4 minutes.

— Make a slaw by slicing fennel paper thin, shredding manchego, then tossing both with 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar, salt and black pepper.



Start by arranging the spears (bottoms trimmed) on a baking sheet, misting them with cooking spray, then roasting for 10 minutes at 400 F. Then:

— Toss with thinly sliced sun-dried tomatoes and a bit of the oil from the jar they were packed in.

— Toss with a vinaigrette made from 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, 2 cloves minced garlic, salt and black pepper.

— Toss with hoisin sauce and a drizzle of toasted sesame oil. Garnish with thinly sliced scallions.



Save yourself time and trouble by using jarred. Just drain them well and pat dry with paper towels.

— Finely dice and toss the peppers with the zest and juice of 1 lemon, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano and 2 cloves minced garlic.

— Slice and mix with 4 mashed anchovies, 2 tablespoons rinsed chopped capers and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes.

— Make a roasted red pepper chimichurri pesto. In a food processor, combine a 12-ounce jar of red peppers (drained), 1/2 cup fresh parsley, 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, 1/4 cup fresh mint, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Pulse until finely chopped.



— Marinate 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives in 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary, the zest and juice of 1 orange, and 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar.

— Finely chop 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives and mix with 2 tablespoons chopped fresh garlic, 2 tablespoons chives, and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Spoon over purchased hummus.

— In a food processor, combine 1/2 cup olives, 4 ounces cream cheese, 2 tablespoons tomato paste, salt and black pepper.



— Roast red grapes on a rimmed baking sheet for 10 minutes at 450 F. Toss with 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze, 1 tablespoon honey and 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint.

— Cut green grapes in half, then toss with marinated artichoke hearts.

— Freeze individual grapes on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with cinnamon and sugar.



Start with chilled cooked, shelled shrimp.

— Toss with diced mango, cucumber, lime juice and minced jalapeno.

— Serve with a light dressing made of mayonnaise, roasted garlic and Dijon mustard.

— Toss with purchased pesto and diced sweet bell pepper.



— Shred and toss with barbecue sauce spiked with smoked paprika and diced apples. Serve warm.

— In a food processor, chop together 1 green bell pepper, 2 stalks of celery, 2 scallions, 2 tablespoons fresh thyme and 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese. Mix in finely chopped chicken breast, 2 tablespoons olive oil, the zest and juice of 1 lemon, salt and black pepper.

— Thinly slice cooked and cooled chicken breasts crosswise to form thin medallions. Spoon hot pepper jelly onto each piece, then sprinkle with chopped salted peanuts.



Start by roasting 8 ounces of crimini or button mushrooms on a rimmed baking sheet for 12 minutes at 450 F.

— Make a mushroom pate by blending the mushrooms in a food processor with 1/4 cup heavy cream and a hefty pinch of salt and black pepper. Stir in 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme and 1/4 cup minced salami.

— Stuff with a blend of crumbled cooked bacon, chopped walnuts, feta cheese, and minced fresh marjoram.

— Whisk together 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce and a hefty pinch of black pepper. Toss the mushrooms in this mixture.



The Associated Press

Grief after loss of loved one can be hard during holidays

December 06, 2013 |

By Nicole Villalpando

Julie Gold had trained to be a volunteer with Hospice Austin but never got to volunteer before she needed her own grief support. In April 2008, her sweetheart, Reed, was killed in a motorcycle accident. They had spent years creating their own holiday traditions.

That year, Gold learned how hard the holidays can be after a loved one has died. Even though Gold had lost Reed in April, by the time the holidays rolled around, she was still numb, she says, plus both her dog and cat also had died that year.

Gold opted to have a quiet Thanksgiving alone. She baked a sweet potato and read a lot that day. Christmas was harder because it was a gift-giving holiday. She didn’t know what to do with Reed’s stocking, and she didn’t know what to do about friends who invited her to the usual holiday gatherings she had always attended as part of a couple.

The anticipation of the season was worse than the actual days themselves, Gold found. That’s very common, says Hospice Austin bereavement coordinator Maggie Cochran. Grief often is intensified during the holidays because the expectations of being happy don’t line up with what people are feeling.

“There’s lots of reminders of happy memories,” Cochran says. “Maybe down the road those can be happy again, but not in that acute feelings stage.”

Gold, who has now been able to volunteer by leading bereavement groups with Hospice Austin, and Cochran have some things to consider for people who have lost a loved one this year. The holidays won’t be the same as last year, and they don’t have to be. Think about what Christmas will look like and discuss it as a family or with friends.

* Accepting party invitations. Just because you always went to a party each year doesn’t mean you have to this year. If you decide to go, explain to the hostess that you might not be able to stay long. Take your own car; if it becomes overwhelming, you can leave.

* Decorate or not. Maybe you decide not to decorate this year. Maybe you decide to decorate and create a tribute to your loved one.

* Send cards or not. You might not have the energy to do it this year, and that’s OK. You also might not want to explain why the loved one is not in the Christmas card picture this year. You also could just send out a few cards to the people who know about your loss.

* Shop or not. If the Christmas music about it being “the most wonderful time of the year” is going to make you start sobbing, this might be the year to shop online. You also can ask for help with the shopping or just make a donation in honor of your loved one.

* Carrying on with meal traditions. It might be comforting to make the same meals or be with the same people as last year, but it also might be harder. Maybe you go out to eat. Maybe you ask a friend if you can come over for Christmas dinner.

* How you will worship. You can decide it will be too painful to go to midnight Mass without your loved one and opt for a different service, or try a different house of worship.

* Pick your holiday location. If you’ve always been at home on Christmas, maybe you want to go to an out-of-town friend or family member’s house this year. Or maybe you want to go on a completely different kind of vacation.

* Take care of yourself. During this stressful time, make sure you’re getting enough sleep and exercise and limiting alcohol.

* Be patient with yourself. You might be short with people or a little grumpy, and that’s OK. You also don’t have to put on a fake smile.

* Trust yourself. Even if everyone is telling you to come to a party or that you shouldn’t be alone on the holiday, do what you want to do.

The second year might also be hard. Gold found the next year harder because, after letting herself out of a lot of typical obligations that first year, she tried to return to the old traditions in the second. After that, each year got better, and she is now dating someone else — something she could never have imagined in 2008.

If you have friends or family members who have lost someone this year, you can help by letting them talk about their loved one and not judging them if they need to tell the same story again and again.

Acknowledge that this might be an especially difficult time for them and offer to help by doing things such as taking care of children or shopping or cooking for them.

Call on the holiday but understand if they don’t want to talk to you. Invite them to events, but don’t put up a fight if they opt not to attend.

Grief is different for everyone, Cochran says. “There’s no timeline, no endpoint … but it does get better; it does get easier.”

Story Filed By Cox Newspapers



The Associated Press

HI: Gray headlines interior color ‘hot list’

December 05, 2013 |

With photo in leaf raw: HI gray paint.jpg

The article below identifies the paint colors that will be hottest for home decorating next year. For more information, please contact Debbie Zimmer, paint and color expert for the Paint Quality Institute, by reply email or by calling 215-962-5551. Thank you.

2014 Paint Color Forecast

Grey – the color that connotes intellect – is one hue homeowners will be incorporating into their home interiors next year. So says Debbie Zimmer, paint and color expert for the Paint Quality Institute, a leading source of information on interior color and design.

In her annual color forecast for 2014, Zimmer is supporting grey in a big way: “It’s the hot new neutral, a sleek and sophisticated color option that adds refinement to almost any room.

“Walls that are painted grey are great backdrops for almost any style of décor, and grey is such a dignified color that it can elevate the appearance of even the most modest furnishings,” she says.

Beyond wall color, grey will embellish interiors in other ways next year — in the form of grey wash on wood furniture, for example, and in fabric used for everything from seating to floor coverings. “We will even see grey’s flashier cousin, silver, used as an important accent color,” says Zimmer.

But grey won’t be the only neutral to be popular in 2014. According to Zimmer, those seeking a change from more saturated color will be happy to learn that white and off-white are back in vogue. Manufacturers of interior paint will offer extensive palettes of ever-so-subtle tints comprised of 30, 40, and even 50 “whites” containing just a hint of color.

White is staging a strong comeback for a number of reasons, says Zimmer.

“As with grey, the ease of coordinating furnishings with a neutral hue like white is appealing to almost everyone,” she says. “However, some will gravitate to white for more personal reasons having to do with a change of address: those who are downsizing will favor white or very light-colored walls to make their new, smaller interiors look more spacious; and for those who may soon put up a ‘For Sale’ sign, white is the wise paint color to apply before listing a home.“

Design professionals and do-it-yourselfers in the mood for more colorful options will also have good choices next year. Blues and greens – in more tints and shades than ever before — will again be crowd-pleasers, as they have been for a while.

“Another hot color in 2014 will be mustard yellow,” says Zimmer. “Its influence is growing in both fashion and home furnishing fabrics. We also expect to see more use of the color on walls — if not for entire rooms, then at least on accent walls.”

If you’re thinking about changing a color scheme in your home interior, Zimmer’s insights into the tints and shades expected to be next year’s “hot” choices can provide some valuable direction. But the color expert has one final piece of advice:

“In the end, color choice is a very personal decision, so whether you are thinking about doing some painting, or changing your décor, or both, stick with colors that you love. When it comes to your home, your opinion is the one that matters most.”

To learn more about color, home decorating, and home painting, visit the Paint Quality Institute blog at

# # #


Since 1989, The Paint Quality Institute (SM) has been educating people on the advantages of using quality interior and exterior paints and coatings. The Paint Quality Institute’s goal is to help educate consumers, contractors and designers by providing information on the virtues of quality paint as well as color trends and decorating with paint through a variety of instructional platforms and conferences, and traditional and new media vehicles. More information can be found at———————————————————————–
This message was sent to Debbie. If you no longer wish to receive email from us, please follow the link below or copy and paste the entire link into your browser.



Special to The Enterprise

Holiday cookies — Cherry Lime Brownies and Mango Marshmallow Bars

November 22, 2013 |

With photo on desktop: GG cherry lime brownies.jpg, GG mango marhsmallow.jpg

By Alison Ladman

We’ve seen all manner of ways to make brownies a holiday treat, everything from burying peppermint candies in them to topping them with candy canes. But we prefer the delicious simplicity of this recipe, which swirls lime marmalade and cherry jam over a rich brownie base studded with chocolate chunks and dried cherries. If lime doesn’t do it for you, feel free to leave out the zest and substitute another variety marmalade or jam.

Cherry Lime Brownies
Start to finish: 40 minutes, plus cooling (10 minutes active)

The ingredients:
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, melted
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Zest of 1 lime
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Dutch processed cocoa powder, sifted
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chunks
1/3 cup lime marmalade
1/3 cup cherry jam

Putting it together:
Heat the oven to 350 F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with baking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, lime zest and vanilla. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the flour and cocoa powder, then stir in the cherries and chocolate chunks.

Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Dollop lime curd and cherry jam over the top of the brownie batter. Gently drag the back of a spoon through the top of the batter and the marmalade and jam to swirl them into the surface. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted at the center yields just moist crumbs. Allow to cool in the pan. Cut into 24 bars.

The mango marshmallow bar has all the makings of a classic summer s’mores — graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallow — but with a decidedly more festive sensibility.

We started with a deliciously buttery graham cracker crust, then topped it with a cream and chocolate ganache studded with bits of cooked mango. Then we pulled out all the stops and made fresh marshmallow — it’s much easier than you imagine — also flecked with mango to spread over the top. And to add a holiday kick, we decorated the top with decorating sugar.

The only special equipment you’ll need is a stand mixer and a candy thermometer. The mixer does the bulk of the work of making the marshmallow.

Mango Marshmallow Bars
Start to finish: 3 hours (1 hour active)

The ingredients:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 cups chopped dried mango, chopped
1 cup plus 6 tablespoons water, divided
3/4 cup heavy cream
11 1/2-ounce bag milk chocolate chips
1/4-ounce envelope gelatin
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup corn syrup
Pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Colored sugar or sprinkles

Putting it together:
Heat the oven to 350 F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with baking spray.

In a medium bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and flour. Stir in the melted butter until thoroughly combined. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking pan and press to form an even layer. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until toasty and browned. Set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium-high, combine the chopped mango and 1 cup of the water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool.

Once the crust and mango have cooled, pour off and discard any excess liquid from the mango. Transfer the mango to a bowl, then wipe the saucepan clean.

Return the pan to medium heat. Add the heavy cream and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to very low, then add the chocolate. Stir until melted and smooth. Stir in half of the mango, then pour the mixture over the crust and spread in an even layer. Refrigerate until completely cooled.

Meanwhile, make the marshmallow layer. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the gelatin with 3 tablespoons of the remaining water. Set aside.

In a small saucepan over medium-high, combine the remaining 3 tablespoons water with the granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt. Cook without stirring until the mixture reaches 240 F on a candy thermometer.

Pour the mixture into the mixer with the gelatin. Using the whisk attachment, beat on high (be careful not to splash the hot syrup) until cool, 7 to 9 minutes. Stir in the vanilla and the remaining half of the mango. Spread the marshmallow mixture evenly over the cooled chocolate layer, then sprinkle with colored sugar or sprinkles. Allow to fully set up, about 2 hours, before cutting into 24 bars. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.



FOOD: Double the oats for a pleasing holiday or breakfast cookie

November 22, 2013 |

With photo in no purge/living: oatmeal breakfast cookies.jpg

By Elizabeth Karmel

Many people would balk at the idea of eating holiday cookies for breakfast, but this recipe might make you reconsider.

These double-the-oats oatmeal cookies are so jammed with oats — making them tender and wonderfully chewy and rich — that I’ve been known to take them on vacation just so I can enjoy a familiar breakfast. Because if you could enjoy your morning bowl of oatmeal in the form of a cookie, why not?

The inspiration for this cookie actually began with my dislike of raisins. Most oatmeal cookies are packed with raisins, which usually turns me off. So I wanted to create my own take on this classic cookie.

I started with a basic cookie dough made with creamed butter, then added twice as many oats as a traditional cookie. I also substituted dried cherries for the raisins. The result was a good cookie, but it wasn’t a great cookie. I wanted to be able to taste the individual ingredients, and I wanted a crispier texture.

I was at loss until a trip to Houston unexpectedly gave me the answer. I was visiting a friend whose mom recently had sent him a tin of her oatmeal cookies. I tried one and wanted to eat the entire batch. I loved the texture and the light, clean taste. They were crisp and toothsome, everything I was looking for.

The secret? She used vegetable oil instead of butter.

At first, I thought this was odd, but then I realized that a lot of my favorite cakes were made with oil, not butter. As soon as I got home, I tested my recipe with oil and I could not believe the difference. My cookies had gone from good to great and I started baking them weekly.

Because I like to eat these cookies for breakfast with a cup of coffee, I bake them and keep them in the freezer so I have them on hand most of the time. I generally bake the cookies with dried cherries and pecans, which makes me equate them with eating a bowl of granola.

But during the holidays, I love making them with dark chocolate chips and walnuts. The addition of the rich chocolate makes them more decadent and takes them from a breakfast cookie to a special occasion cookie.


Double-the-Oats Oatmeal Cookies
Feel free to substitute 1 1/2 cups of dark chocolate chips and 1 cup of chopped walnuts for the dried cherries and pecans. Either version is delicious and perfect for a holiday — or any day — treat. Start to finish: 30 minutes

The ingredients:
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking), divided
1 1/3 cups dried cherries
1 generous cup pecan halves, coarsely chopped

Putting it together:
Heat the oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with kitchen parchment.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla until frothy. Add both sugars and the oil. Mix until well blended and creamy in appearance.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cardamom and salt. Add to sugar and egg mixture and mix until completely combined. Mix in 2 cups of the oats, then the cherries and pecans. Add the remaining 1 1/2 cups of oats and mix well. The batter will be stiff.

Working in batches, use a teaspoon to drop cookie dough on the prepared cookie, leaving about 2 inches between cookies. Bake for 14 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown and still soft at the center. Cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet, then use a spatula to transfer to a rack to cool completely. Makes 3 dozen cookies.



The Associated Press

waiting for information

November 21, 2013 |


Health information exchange improving coordination of care in 12 rural counties 

(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — Communication of clinical information needed to provide safe and effective, high quality health care is now easier in 12 rural California counties as a result of an initiative launched earlier this year by the UC Davis Institute for Population Health Improvement (IPHI).  

Through nearly $775,000 in grants awarded under IPHI’s California Health eQuality (CHeQ) Program to four designated health information exchange (HIE) providers, the adoption of HIE is significantly accelerating in rural California. As a result of CHeQ’s Rural HIE Incentive Program, HIE options for exchanging patient care-related information electronically have been created for more than 30 acute care and critical access hospitals, community clinics and behavioral health providers, serving nearly 3.5 million rural Californians. More than 700 physicians in these 12 counties will benefit from having better access to patient information.  

CHeQ also is targeting an additional $200,000 to fund “Direct” accounts, a service much like secure email, to individual physician offices, small clinics, hospitals, and other providers in these rural counties that are not yet served by a health information organization or have HIE options. The Direct service will become available in early 2014.  

Health information exchange refers to the secure electronic communication of health-related information among doctors, hospitals and other providers so that they have important patient-related information wherever and whenever it is needed to support patient care. Establishing HIE services to support electronic communication of health information in rural areas has proven to be particularly challenging, which is why IPHI launched the Rural HIE Incentive Program. HIE options for some areas were largely inaccessible or simply did not exist. 

“Patients in rural areas often have to travel long distances to multiple different health care providers to get needed care — especially for medical specialist service — increasing the likelihood that some providers will not have all the information they need,” said Kenneth W. Kizer, IPHI’s director and a distinguished professor at UC Davis. “CHeQ’s rural HIE incentive initiative has provided a catalyst for developing these services in large areas of California. This will result in better coordination and higher quality patient care being provided in these areas.”  
Redwood MedNet of Ukiah, one of the four Rural HIE Incentive Program awardees, knows how beneficial HIE is to their rural communities.  

“The Rural HIE Incentive Program has been extremely useful for us,” said William Ross, Redwood MedNet program manager. It adds HIE functionality to low-resource facilities such as community clinics and critical access hospitals in historically underserved areas.” 

In addition to Redwood MedNet, the three other service providers under the Rural HIE Incentive Program are Inland Empire HIE (Riverside), Orange County Partnership Regional Health Information Organization (OCPRHIO) (Orange) and Axesson (Santa Cruz).  

The 12 counties benefitting from this initiative are Colusa, Fresno, Humboldt, Kings, Madera, Mendocino, Napa, San Luis Obispo, Solano, Sonoma, Tulare and Yolo.



UC Davis Institute for Population Health Improvement funds state’s first “Blue Button” project for Medi-Cal
Patients to have online access to their prescription data for improved patient safety.

(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — As part of its mission to accelerate the adoption of health information exchange throughout California, the UC Davis Institute for Population Health Improvement’s California Health eQuality program awarded $400,000 to L.A. Care, the nation’s largest publicly operated health plan, to develop Blue Button functionality.

Blue Button will allow L.A. Care members to access their own prescription data online. The project is the first in California and among the first in the nation to develop the tool for Medicaid beneficiaries.

L.A. Care offers free or low-cost health insurance programs to more than one million Los Angeles County residents, giving members access to more than 10,000 physicians, specialists, hospitals and pharmacies.

The Blue Button initiative is a Web-based feature that allows patients to easily view and download their health information and share it with health care providers and caregivers. The U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs initiated Blue Button in 2010. In 2012, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology began encouraging its broader use.

“Having a list of medications available through the Blue Button will help L.A. Care members take an active role in managing their care, increase effective communication with their providers and avoid potential prescription errors,” said Kenneth W. Kizer, distinguished professor and director of the Institute for Population Health Improvement at UC Davis. “The lessons learned from this project can serve as a model for all managed care health plans in the state to adopt the same Blue Button functionality to improve patients’ access to their data.”

L.A. Care expects to begin extending the Blue Button service to Medi-Cal Managed Care beneficiaries by early 2014.

“For underserved and disadvantaged populations, the availability of online medical information resources significantly lags behind those offered to commercial insurance and Medicare patients, limiting their ability to participate in their own care,” said Trudi Carter, chief medical officer for L.A. Care Health Plan. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to bring Blue Button to those vulnerable L.A. County residents, who can now get more involved in the management of their conditions and share their information with their providers and caregivers.”

The UC Davis Institute for Population Health Improvement is working to align the many determinants of health to promote and sustain the well-being of both individuals and their communities. Established in 2011, the institute is leading an array of initiatives, from improving health-care quality and health information exchange to advancing surveillance and prevention programs for heart disease and cancer.

L.A. Care Health Plan (Local Initiative Health Authority of Los Angeles County) is a public entity and community-accountable health plan serving residents of Los Angeles County through a variety of programs including L.A. Care Covered™, Medi-Cal, L.A. Care’s Healthy Kids, L.A. Care Health Plan Medicare Advantage HMO and PASC-SEIU Homecare Workers Health Care Plan. L.A. Care is a leader in developing new programs through innovative partnerships designed to provide health coverage to vulnerable populations and to support the safety net. With more than one million members, L.A. Care is the nation’s largest publicly operated health plan.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

waiting for information

November 21, 2013 |

UC Davis has been awarded a $750,000 grant to expand its telemedicine services for infants.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant will allow UCD to provide ’round-the-clock access to neonatologists and other subspecialists through the use of UCD’s secure videoconferencing capabilities, according to a news release.

Four hospitals were picked to take part in the program, called PEANUT: Pediatric Emergency Assistance to Newborns Using Telehealth.



(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — UC Davis Children’s Hospital has been awarded a three-year, approximately $750,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for the Advancement of Telehealth – Health Resources and Services Administration (OAT-HRSA) to expand its services for infants through the new Pediatric Emergency Assistance to Newborns Using Telehealth (PEANUT) Program.

The program will provide clinicians at rural hospitals round-the-clock access to neonatologists and other subspecialists through the use of UC Davis’ award-winning secure videoconferencing capabilities.

Four hospitals in California were selected to launch the PEANUT project because they are in rural counties serving health-professional shortage areas and medically underserved areas, said Madan Dharmar, assistant research professor in the UC Davis Children’s Hospital Pediatric Telemedicine Program.

“Telemedicine has been an important part of UC Davis Children’s Hospital’s efforts to improve access to pediatric care for more than a decade,” said Dharmar, the principal investigator for the PEANUT Program. “Our goal is to extend essential subspecialist expertise to medically underserved areas, which should lead to higher quality and more cost-effective care.”

“Rural doctors and hospitals deliver great care. But they have limited access to pediatric subspecialists. Without subspecialty guidance, newborn infants may be undertreated, receive inappropriate therapies or face unnecessary transfers. By providing immediate access to neonatologists, and other pediatric experts, PEANUT will provide a safety net for rural clinicians and their patients,” Dharmar said.

For example, increasing access to pediatric cardiologists will help rural hospitals follow new guidelines for identifying infants with congenital heart disease, and also will help avoid unnecessary neonatal transfers if physicians rule out the condition in advance.

In addition to providing multidisciplinary neonatal care, the PEANUT Program also will enhance access to ongoing medical education for physicians, nurses and other hospital staff. The program will assist hospitals with implementing new state and national care standards, such as the Critical Congenital Heart Disease Screening Program, by providing training for rural hospital technologists in neonatal echocardiography. In addition, health-care providers in rural nurseries will be trained on techniques and standards for emergency care for newborns.

“The PEANUT Program will give our rural communities immediate access to the pediatric subspecialists they need to do their jobs well,” said Robin Steinhorn, chair of the Department of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief for UC Davis Children’s Hospital. “We view this program as an important step in delivering high-quality and cost-effective care throughout California.”
In addition to reducing rural disparities in care, the PEANUT program will study the long-term impact of these telemedicine interventions on neonatal outcomes, as well as the cost-effectiveness of these efforts.

James P. Marcin, director of the UC Davis Children’s Hospital Pediatric Telemedicine Program; Robin H. Steinhorn, chair, Department of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief, UC Davis Children’s Hospital; and Byung Kwang (BK) Yoo, associate professor, Department of Public Health Sciences, are the grant’s co-investigators.

UC Davis Children’s Hospital is the Sacr



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

GG1: A plan for Thanksgiving week — plus a Leftovers Shepherd’s Pie

November 08, 2013 |

By Janet K. Keeler

* Monday: Simple food
Bank calories for Thursday by trimming some tonight with White Bean and Greens Soup served with toasted pita triangles. Saute a chopped onion in olive oil along with diced carrots and celery. When veggies are soft, add a box of chicken or veggie broth. Stir in 1 teaspoon dried thyme and 2 cans of drained and rinsed white beans. Let simmer for about 10 minutes, then add whatever greens you like, such as baby spinach leaves or chopped kale, and cook until wilted. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

* Tuesday: Fridge-foraging
Time to make room in the fridge for all those big feast ingredients, especially Tom himself. So tonight you’ll make Open-Face Sandwiches With Fried-Egg Toppers. Toast a big piece of bread, spread with butter, mayo or soft cheese like Boursin and add thin slices of whatever meat you have on hand (ham, turkey, leftover steak). Stack with greens (Romaine, arugula, spinach) and sprinkle with a bit of vinegar. A fried egg tops it all. Now, make sure you’ve scoured the fridge for any bits of leftover soups, vegetable sides or creamy salads. Eat them.

* Wednesday: Rotisserie chicken
Maybe the store-bought bird seems like poultry overload this week, but it’s so convenient on a night when you’ve got lots of work to do. Take this opportunity to make another sweep through the fridge so you can make room for Aunt Margaret’s very special Jell-O salad on Thursday. Use the bird to make Whatever You Have Chef’s Salad. Pile up the lettuce and top with veggies, shredded chicken, hard-boiled egg slices, shredded or cubed cheese, pitted olives, pepperoncini, etc. Use the dressing of your choice, but make sure there are no leftovers.

* Thursday: T-day and eating
No matter what time you are serving dinner or when you’ll leave for someone else’s house, you’ve got to eat something before you sit down to the big meal. You don’t want to fill up the family too much, but too little food might cause crabbiness, a very unwelcome mood at the holiday table. Set out some nibbles like cheese and crackers, and hummus and pita chips. Have some yogurt on hand that can be served with granola. Fresh fruit is also a spirit booster.

* Friday: Turkey redux
Hopefully you made enough extra food to prepare Thanksgiving-Leftovers Shepherd’s Pie (recipe below) tonight. This recipe, from our buddy Martha Stewart, throws in everything but the pumpkin pie. If you’re lucky, you’ll have a slice or two of that left to enjoy with the last squirt of whipped cream.
The recipe

Thanksgiving-Leftovers Shepherd’s Pie

The ingredients:
3 cups cooked stuffing
1 cup cranberry sauce, plus more for topping (optional)
1 pound sliced cooked roast turkey with sage
10 ounces glazed carrots (or another leftover vegetable)
4 to 6 tablespoons gravy
3 to 4 cups mashed potatoes

Putting it together:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a 9- to 10-inch pie plate, mound stuffing on bottom, then layer with cranberry sauce, turkey and carrots. Drizzle with gravy and spread potatoes over surface to sides of dish. Top with more cranberry sauce, if desired.

Place pie on a baking sheet and bake until heated through and potatoes are golden, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool slightly.
Serves 4 to 6.

— From

— Tampa Bay Times



Scripps Howard News Service

GG1: Classic and modern takes on cranberry sauce

November 15, 2013 |

With two photos: gg cranberry 1 and 2

By Alison Ladman

Unless you really crave those accordion-like ridges or consider Thanksgiving a failure without hearing that classic shplopping noise, you have no excuse for resorting to canned cranberry sauce.

Homemade cranberry sauce is wildly better than anything you can buy and it takes little time or effort to make. Plus, it’s easy to take a basic cranberry sauce and doctor it up in so many delicious ways.

To help you along on your journey from can to greatness, we offer a base recipe for a delicious brown sugar and orange cranberry sauce, plus five ways of taking the flavor in crazy delicious directions. Don’t want to use our base recipe? Don’t. Use what’s written on the bag of fresh cranberries, then use our flavorings.


Cranberry sauce with variations
Start to finish: 15 minutes

The ingredients:
12-ounce bag fresh cranberries
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup orange juice
Pinch of salt

Putting it together:
In a medium saucepan over medium-high, combine the cranberries, brown sugar, orange juice and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the cranberries have popped and softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Serves 8.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and select one of the flavor combinations below:

* Chipotle:
Add 1 minced chipotle pepper and 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from a can of chipotles in adobo). Allow to cool, then stir in 3 tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro.

* Truffled:
Allow to fully cool, then stir in 1/2 teaspoon truffle oil and 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives.

* Sweet-and-Smoky:
Stir in 1/2 cup crumbled well-cooked bacon, 1 teaspoon smoked paprika and an extra 1/2 cup brown sugar.

* Lemon-Tarragon:
Stir in 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh tarragon and the zest and juice of 1 lemon.

* Ginger-Miso:
Stir in 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger and 2 tablespoons sweet white miso.



The Associated Press

GG 1: Setting a dramatic Thanksgiving table

November 08, 2013 |

With photo on desktop: GG1 tgiving table.jpg
By Mary Carol Garrity

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Dan starts cooking the turkey early while I set the table for 27. At dinnertime, our large but intimate party of family and friends packs around the table to raise a toast, share what we are most thankful for and dig into some great food. Our daughter calls us the Loud Family because the volume gets high as we all share stories, catch up on each other’s news and roar with laughter.

If you are entertaining this Thanksgiving, I want to encourage you to make the setting for your feast as special as the people who will ring your table. Here are some steps I follow when creating a dramatic and memorable Thanksgiving table.

Step 1: Aim to awe
It’s sometimes hard to find the time to spoil the people we love most. Thanksgiving is the perfect opportunity to do just that by taking extra time to set a table that is so lavish and lovely it lets guests know how very important they are to you. The time you invest in creating a dramatic tablescape pays off when you see the surprised and delighted faces of guests as they take in your dining room.

A powerful centerpiece is the key to creating a table that wows guests. I have designed some centerpieces that are intricate and complex, and I’ve fashioned some that are powerful in their subtle simplicity.

Consider using matching garden urns to anchor your centerpiece, or even tall, beefy vases or cake plates or hurricanes — anything that gives you some nice height and allows you to embellish with seasonal decor. Incorporate moss, straw and fall foliage. If you want to go bigger and wilder, use longer tendrils of fall foliage and fallen sticks in your centerpiece.

Lushly layered place settings that weave together different colors, textures and heights are among my very favorites. Maybe start with simple orange table runners, which provide a pop of bright fall color, to break up the wood of a table top and serve as placemats. Look in your china cabinet and see what dishes you could mix up to give your table a blend of patterns and colors. You’ll be surprised by the diverse pieces you can weave together to create a charming place setting.

Step 2: Zero in on details that make a difference
Use personalization to make each place setting that much more special. Perhaps go with a menu card, a name card so everyone knows where to sit and a conversation prompt: “I am thankful for ….” There is something special about seeing your name at your place setting, isn’t there? It makes you feel like a treasured addition to the party.

Make sure to add in a few other touches that applaud the season, such as fall-themed dishes and table linens.

Step 3: Don’t forget the backdrop
While the dining table is the undisputed star of the show at Thanksgiving, don’t forget to add some decorative touches to the rest of your dining room. If your table is loaded with drama, you won’t need much. One of the spots I like to dress up for holiday entertaining is my buffet. Many of the pieces on my buffet remain in place year round, like the matching lamps and the platter. I just poke in a few seasonal motifs, like a scale holding a fall figurine, a pumpkin and a tiny bouquet of orange roses.



Scripps Howard News Service

GG1: Pastrami-wrapped bird for Hanukkah and Turkey Day

October 30, 2013 |

with photo on desktop: pastramiturkey.jpg

By Alison Ladman

Pastrami. Horseradish. Matzo. Frying in oil. All the makings of a traditional Jewish holiday meal. But this time, we add turkey, a nod to the first day of Hanukkah falling on Thanksgiving this year.

To keep this lusciously savory dinner on the speedy side, we started with turkey tenderloins. They cook quickly and you don’t need to worry about thawing them as you often do with a whole turkey. We then wrap the tenderloins in pastrami, coat them in matzo and fry them until crisp on the outside, but moist and tender inside.

The breaded pastrami wrap on the turkey adds a great “skin” to the otherwise simple turkey tenderloin. The pickled onions have a subtle bite from the horseradish. Of course, putting this together requires a little more hands-on time than throwing a turkey in the oven, but the reward is in the taste.



Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)

Servings: 12

For the pickled onions:

1 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons pickling spice

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1/2 cup prepared horseradish

2 medium red onions, thinly sliced

For the turkey:

3 pounds turkey tenderloins

8 ounces thinly sliced pastrami

2 eggs

2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups matzo meal

Vegetable oil, for frying

In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the vinegar, sugar, pickling spice, salt and horseradish. Bring to a boil, then add the onions. Return to a boil, cover and remove from the heat. Let sit until cool. The onions can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.

Wrap each turkey tenderloin in several slices of pastrami, securing them with wooden skewers as needed.

In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, mustard and flour. In a second bowl, spread the matzo meal. One at a time, roll each tenderloin in the egg mixture to coat evenly. Transfer to the matzo meal and roll to coat. The tenderloins can be prepared in this manner up to several hours ahead of time, then covered and refrigerated.

When ready to cook, heat the oven to 350 F.

In a large, deep saute pan, heat 1/2 inch of oil until it sizzles when a matzo crumb is dropped into it. One at a time, fry each tenderloin for 5 to 7 minutes per side, or until golden brown all over. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet, then repeat with the remaining tenderloins.

When all of the tenderloins are fried, place them in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they reach 165 F at the center. Serve with the pickled onions on the side.

Nutrition information per serving: 270 calories; 70 calories from fat (26 percent of total calories); 8 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 90 mg cholesterol; 17 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 2 g sugar; 35 g protein; 440 mg sodium.



The Associated Press

GG1: Turkey Day money-saving tips you’ll be thankful for

October 30, 2013 |

By Kasey Trenum

Q: How can I prepare a Thanksgiving feast on a budget?

A: As the cost of food continues to rise, you might be stressed about affording a Thanksgiving dinner. But your stress does not have to go up with food prices. Here are some simple steps for preparing a Thanksgiving feast on a budget.

* Search for coupons! This is one of the simplest ways to save on Thanksgiving foods. Luckily, this time of year there will be lots of them floating around. Don’t forget to purchase a Sunday paper for coupons; also look for rebate offers. If you are unsure where to start, check the coupon database at It is a cinch to search for an item by name and print any available coupons. Plan your shopping and menu around the coupons you have and see what a difference it makes.

* Start shopping now. You know what you need now, so go buy it ahead of time if possible. If you know you want a turkey, pie fillings, stuffing and canned pumpkin, stock up in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving when these items are on sale. This will also help you avoid last-minute impulse shopping, which always ends badly. Make a list, get shopping now and see how you can save.

* Be a price-matching pro. All of your area stores will be offering traditional Thanksgiving foods such as turkey, dressing and cranberry sauce, so this is the perfect time to use price-matching. That means you can have one store honor the sale price of another store. Depending on the product, you may be able to use a coupon on top of that. Check with your local grocer for details of the store’s price-matching policy so you can take advantage of it.

* Keep it simple. Instead of tons of different dishes that your guests likely won’t finish, make a few basic dishes that everyone will eat. If you know your family’s favorites, stick to those and bypass doing any additional dishes. You don’t need to make them and waste the money if no one is going to eat them.

Give these tips a try and you will have plenty of cash left in your pocket — cash that is sure to come in handy this holiday shopping season!




Scripps Howard News Service

Senior or health page: Home remedies

October 23, 2013 |

By Deanna Fox
The Associated Press

As the calendar turns toward winter, we start to hear it: The sniffles from the person in the next cubicle. The dreaded middle-of-the-night coughs from a child. It’s the cacophony of cold season, and we are headed into the throes of it.

Step away from the Sudafed.

While colds, flus, allergies and other seasonal ailments are bad news for us, the sounds that accompany them are as sweet to pharmaceutical companies and drugstores as coins clinking into a piggy bank. Last winter was one of the worst cold seasons in a decade, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , which Advertising Age Magazine reported led to a 38 percent sales increase for Johnson & Johnson and a 9 percent increase for Procter & Gamble, according to Advertising Age magazine.

But many studies show conventional treatments are not as effective or have the same effectiveness rate as classic home remedies, and the overuse of them can actually lower effectiveness moving forward.

Some home remedies have withstood the test of time, like chicken soup and the power of good local honey. Reports from the Mayo Clinic have shown chicken soup relieves congestion, limits inflammation (due to inhibiting the movement of neutrophils, an immune system cell), and speeds up the movement of mucus in the body. Protective cilia, tiny hair-like structures in the nose that block germs and other contagions from entering the body, get a boost in function from chicken soup as well, according to the November 1998 issue of Coping with Allergies and Asthma. There is no scientific data on the effectiveness of matzo ball versus noodles in chicken soup, though surely your grandmother has ideas and opinions.

A more adult cold cure-all is the hot toddy. Much like chicken soup’s vapors help with congestion, the same is true with a hot toddy. The alcohol in a toddy can dilate blood vessels, helping mucus and white blood cells fight infection, and can also provide a mild sedative, making for a good night’s sleep when slumber is elusive due to cold symptoms.

Writer William Faulkner, a known hot toddy enthusiast, would prescribe toddies to cure everything from “a bad spill from a horse to a bad cold, from a broken leg to a broken heart.” A good base recipe for a toddy is 1/4 cup whiskey, a squeeze of lemon, 1 tablespoon of honey and 1/2 cup boiling water or hot tea. Combine all ingredients in a mug and drink while still hot.

”On the Score of Hospitality: Selected Recipes of a Van Rensselaer Family, Albany, New York, 1785-1835,” a book filled with recipes and cures produced from the “Historic Cherry Hill Recipe Collection,” also advocates for the use of toddy-type elixirs. Combining rum or wine with an assortment of herbs, botanical oils, and water or milk was recommended for curing sore throats, colds, coughs and “the dropsy” (commonly known today as edema).

So a toddy a day keeps the doctor away.

A key ingredient in the toddy is honey. Honey, particularly raw honey, is full of antibacterial and antimicrobial properties and sulfur, which help to soothe sore throats and speeds the get-well process of illness. Honey can be boiled down with essential oils to create homemade cough drops or lozenges for at-home healing on the go.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advises caregivers to avoid giving children younger than 2 years, and in some cases age 6, over-the-counter cold medicine (as reported in an August 2007 statement). Pediatricians and parents alike turn to natural remedies to combat sniffles and stuffy heads. While there is some relief found in pharmaceutical treatments, the side effects that often come with relief (high blood pressure, dehydration, and more) are more harmful that the actual illness, deterring their use by adults and children alike.

While previous generations turned away from homeopathic options in favor of commercially produced “convenience” medications, knowledge of the natural healing properties of honey, herbs, essential oils and extracts, spices, saline and more is re-emerging. Increased research and practice is leading people back into their pantries for all-natural solutions, and the popularity of the kitchen cabinet pharmacy rises with each cold and flu season.

Deanna Fox is a frequent contributor to the Times Union. Find her at or

Homemade Cough Drops

3 inches peeled ginger root, sliced in 1/2-inch pieces

3 cold and flu tea bags or other therapeutic tea (optional)

4 cups water

1 cup raw honey

10 drops food-grade peppermint essential oil

Confectioners’ sugar

Boil ginger, tea (if using) and water together. Reduce to about 1 cup by simmering on low. Strain and reserve liquid.

Heat honey and tea mixture together in a thick-bottomed pot over medium heat. Do not allow to boil over (adjust temperature as needed). Stir constantly until the mixture reaches 300 degrees on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat.

Add the peppermint oil — be careful, it may smoke a little, but that is normal. Stir rapidly to incorporate. Pour immediately into small candy molds or onto a cookie sheet that’s been lined with a Sil-Pat mat or parchment paper and dusted with confectioners’ sugar.

If not using candy molds, let the mixture rest after pouring for a few minutes, then cut into 1-inch-by-1/2-inch rectangles with a well-greased knife. Once cooled completely, dust each drop with confectioners’ sugar, wrap with wax paper, and store in an airtight container or zip-top bag for up to three months. Use whenever illness or a sore throat occurs.

Vapor Rub

1 cup coconut oil

3 tablespoons olive oil

30 drops peppermint essential oil

30 drops eucalyptus essential oil

15 drops rosemary or tea tree essential oil

15 drops clove or cinnamon essential oil

In a double-boiler, melt the coconut and olive oils. Once melted, add in the essential oils and stir. Pour into a heat-safe container and allow to cool. Store at room temperature and use liberally on chest and feet to help clear stuffiness and congestion.

Shower Vapor Tabs

Baking Soda


Essential oils (peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary, tea tree)

In a bowl, combine enough baking soda and water together to form a paste the consistency of peanut butter. For every cup of paste, add 90 drops of essential oils of your choice. Pour paste into paper-lined muffin tin cups, making each tab about 3/4 inch thick. Allow to air-dry overnight. Store in an airtight bag or container until ready to use.

To use, remove one tab from the paper liner and place in the bottom of the shower. As the hot water splashes the tab, it releases vapors and opens up congestion.



GG1: Latkes lend savory crunch to Thanksgiving stuffing

October 23, 2013 |

(With photo in desktop GG folder: gg1 latkestuffing.jpg)
By Alison Ladman

Part of what makes the traditional Thanksgiving stuffing so irresistible is its delicious blend of lightly crisped top and sides with a tender and moist inside.

Turns out that combination also happens to be the mark of a great fried potato latke, one of the most iconic foods of Hanukkah. And since this year marks the rare convergence of Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah, we decided to see whether we could unite these classic comfort foods in one dish.

The result is a wonderfully rich stuffing topped by a crispy layer of fried latkes. And it’s good enough that you may want to make it for years to come, regardless of when Hanukkah or Thanksgiving fall on the calendar.



Start to finish: 1 hour 10 minutes (30 minutes active)

Servings: 12

2 large russet potatoes

4 eggs, divided

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons minced fresh sage

Salt and ground black pepper

Vegetable oil, for frying

1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped

3 stalks celery, roughly chopped

2 carrots, roughly chopped

1 green bell pepper, cored and roughly chopped

1/4 cup chopped fresh chives

2 medium apples, peeled and diced

1 large loaf (about 1 pound) challah bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and toasted

2 cups low-sodium chicken or turkey broth or stock

Heat the oven to 350 F. Coat a large casserole dish or a 9-by-13-inch pan with cooking spray.

Into a medium bowl lined with several layers of paper towels or a clean kitchen towel, shred the potatoes. Gather the towels with the potatoes inside and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Discard the liquid, dry the bowl, then return the potatoes to the bowl, removing the towels. Stir in 2 of the eggs, the flour, sage and a hefty pinch each of salt and pepper.

In a large skillet over medium-high, heat 1/4 inch of oil over medium-high. Working in batches, drop the potato mixture in 1/4 cup mounds into the oil, flattening them with the back of a spatula. Cook until golden brown on both sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the latkes to a paper towel-lined plate and repeat with the remaining potato mixture.

In a food processor, combine the onion, celery, carrots and green pepper. Pulse until finely chopped.

Drain all but 1/4 cup of the oil from the pan used to cook the latkes. Set the pan over medium heat, then transfer the vegetable mixture to it and cook until lightly browned and tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then add the chives, apples and challah. Season with a hefty sprinkle each of salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, whisk together the 2 remaining eggs and the broth. Pour over the stuffing mixture and mix well. Spoon the stuffing into the prepared pan. Arrange the latkes over the top. Wrap with foil or cover and bake for 35 minutes. Remove the foil or cover and continue baking for 10 minutes, or until 165 F in the center.

Nutrition information per serving: 260 calories; 50 calories from fat (19 percent of total calories); 6 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 80 mg cholesterol; 42 g carbohydrate; 4 g fiber; 7 g sugar; 8 g protein; 330 mg sodium.



The Associated Press

Is music the key to success?

October 15, 2013 |

By Joanne Lipman
Condoleeza Rice trained to be a concert pianist. Alan Greenspan, former chairman of the Federal Reserve, was a professional clarinet and saxophone player. The hedge fund billionaire Bruce Kovner is a pianist who took classes at Juilliard.

Multiple studies link music study to academic achievement. But what is it about serious music training that seems to correlate with outsize success in other fields?

The connection isn’t a coincidence. I know because I asked. I put the question to top-flight professionals in industries from tech to finance to media, all of whom had serious (if often little-known) past lives as musicians. Almost all made a connection between their music training and their professional achievements.

The phenomenon extends beyond the math-music association. Strikingly, many high achievers told me music opened up the pathways to creative thinking. And their experiences suggest that music training sharpens other qualities: Collaboration. The ability to listen. A way of thinking that weaves together disparate ideas. The power to focus on the present and the future simultaneously.

Will your school music program turn your kid into a Paul Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft (guitar)? Or a Woody Allen (clarinet)? Probably not. These are singular achievers. But the way these and other visionaries I spoke to process music is intriguing. As is the way many of them apply music’s lessons of focus and discipline into new ways of thinking and communicating — even problem solving.

Look carefully and you’ll find musicians at the top of almost any industry. Woody Allen performs weekly with a jazz band. The television broadcaster Paula Zahn (cello) and the NBC chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd (French horn) attended college on music scholarships; NBC’s Andrea Mitchell trained to become a professional violinist. Both Microsoft’s Mr. Allen and the venture capitalist Roger McNamee have rock bands. Larry Page, a co-founder of Google, played saxophone in high school. Steven Spielberg is a clarinetist and son of a pianist. The former World Bank president James D. Wolfensohn has played cello at Carnegie Hall.

“It’s not a coincidence,” says Mr. Greenspan, who gave up jazz clarinet but still dabbles at the baby grand in his living room. “I can tell you as a statistician, the probability that that is mere chance is extremely small.” The cautious former Fed chief adds, “That’s all that you can judge about the facts. The crucial question is: why does that connection exist?”

Paul Allen offers an answer. He says music “reinforces your confidence in the ability to create.” Mr. Allen began playing the violin at age 7 and switched to the guitar as a teenager. Even in the early days of Microsoft, he would pick up his guitar at the end of marathon days of programming. The music was the emotional analog to his day job, with each channeling a different type of creative impulse. In both, he says, “something is pushing you to look beyond what currently exists and express yourself in a new way.”

Mr. Todd says there is a connection between years of practice and competition and what he calls the “drive for perfection.” The veteran advertising executive Steve Hayden credits his background as a cellist for his most famous work, the Apple “1984” commercial depicting rebellion against a dictator. “I was thinking of Stravinsky when I came up with that idea,” he says. He adds that his cello performance background helps him work collaboratively: “Ensemble playing trains you, quite literally, to play well with others, to know when to solo and when to follow.”

For many of the high achievers I spoke with, music functions as a “hidden language,” as Mr. Wolfensohn calls it, one that enhances the ability to connect disparate or even contradictory ideas. When he ran the World Bank, Mr. Wolfensohn traveled to more than 100 countries, often taking in local performances (and occasionally joining in on a borrowed cello), which helped him understand “the culture of people, as distinct from their balance sheet.”

It’s in that context that the much-discussed connection between math and music resonates most. Both are at heart modes of expression. Bruce Kovner, the founder of the hedge fund Caxton Associates and chairman of the board of Juilliard, says he sees similarities between his piano playing and investing strategy; as he says, both “relate to pattern recognition, and some people extend these paradigms across different senses.”

Mr. Kovner and the concert pianist Robert Taub both describe a sort of synesthesia — they perceive patterns in a three-dimensional way. Mr. Taub, who gained fame for his Beethoven recordings and has since founded a music software company, MuseAmi, says that when he performs, he can “visualize all of the notes and their interrelationships,” a skill that translates intellectually into making “multiple connections in multiple spheres.”

For others I spoke to, their passion for music is more notable than their talent. Woody Allen told me bluntly, “I’m not an accomplished musician. I get total traction from the fact that I’m in movies.”

Mr. Allen sees music as a diversion, unconnected to his day job. He likens himself to “a weekend tennis player who comes in once a week to play. I don’t have a particularly good ear at all or a particularly good sense of timing. In comedy, I’ve got a good instinct for rhythm. In music, I don’t, really.”

Still, he practices the clarinet at least half an hour every day, because wind players will lose their embouchure (mouth position) if they don’t: “If you want to play at all you have to practice. I have to practice every single day to be as bad as I am.” He performs regularly, even touring internationally with his New Orleans jazz band. “I never thought I would be playing in concert halls of the world to 5,000, 6,000 people,” he says. “I will say, quite unexpectedly, it enriched my life tremendously.”

Music provides balance, explains Mr. Wolfensohn, who began cello lessons as an adult. “You aren’t trying to win any races or be the leader of this or the leader of that. You’re enjoying it because of the satisfaction and joy you get out of music, which is totally unrelated to your professional status.”

For Roger McNamee, whose Elevation Partners is perhaps best known for its early investment in Facebook, “music and technology have converged,” he says. He became expert on Facebook by using it to promote his band, Moonalice, and now is focusing on video by live-streaming its concerts. He says musicians and top professionals share “the almost desperate need to dive deep.” This capacity to obsess seems to unite top performers in music and other fields.

Ms. Zahn remembers spending up to four hours a day “holed up in cramped practice rooms trying to master a phrase” on her cello. Mr. Todd, now 41, recounted in detail the solo audition at age 17 when he got the second-highest mark rather than the highest mark — though he still was principal horn in Florida’s All-State Orchestra.

“I’ve always believed the reason I’ve gotten ahead is by outworking other people,” he says. It’s a skill learned by “playing that solo one more time, working on that one little section one more time,” and it translates into “working on something over and over again, or double-checking or triple-checking.” He adds, “There’s nothing like music to teach you that eventually if you work hard enough, it does get better. You see the results.”

That’s an observation worth remembering at a time when music as a serious pursuit — and music education — is in decline in this country.

Consider the qualities these high achievers say music has sharpened: collaboration, creativity, discipline and the capacity to reconcile conflicting ideas. All are qualities notably absent from public life. Music may not make you a genius, or rich, or even a better person. But it helps train you to think differently, to process different points of view — and most important, to take pleasure in listening.

Joanne Lipman is a co-author, with Melanie Kupchynsky, of the book “Strings Attached: One Tough Teacher and the Gift of Great Expectations.” This was published originally in the New York Times.



Special to The Enterprise

Think pink: Breast cancer myths

October 10, 2013 |

(NOTE: Tons of pink ribbon graphics in…type in “pink ribbon breast cancer” and many images that could run with this story will appear.)

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same. Knowing what isn’t true about breast cancer is a step in the right direction.

The breast cancer myth: Finding a lump in your breast means you have breast cancer.

The truth: Only a small percentage of breast lumps turn out to be cancer. But if you discover a persistent lump in your breast or notice any changes in breast tissue, it should never be ignored. It is very important that you see a physician for a clinical breast exam. He or she may possibly order breast imaging studies to determine if this lump is of concern or not.

Take charge of your health by performing routine breast self-exams, establishing ongoing communication with your doctor, getting an annual clinical breast exam, and scheduling your routine screening mammograms.

The myth: Men do not get breast cancer; it affects women only.

The truth: Quite the contrary, each year it is estimated that approximately 2,190 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 410 will die. While this percentage is still small, men should also check themselves periodically by doing a breast self-exam while in the shower and reporting any changes to their physicians.

Breast cancer in men is usually detected as a hard lump underneath the nipple and areola. Men carry a higher mortality than women do, primarily because awareness among men is less and they are less likely to assume a lump is breast cancer, which can cause a delay in seeking treatment.

The myth: A mammogram can cause breast cancer to spread.

The truth: A mammogram, or x-ray of the breast, currently remains the gold standard for the early detection of breast cancer. Breast compression while getting a mammogram cannot cause cancer to spread. According to the National Cancer Institute, “The benefits of mammography, however, nearly always outweigh the potential harm from the radiation exposure. Mammograms require very small doses of radiation. The risk of harm from this radiation exposure is extremely low.”

The standard recommendation is an annual mammographic screening for women beginning at age 40. Base your decision on your physician’s recommendation and be sure to discuss any remaining questions or concerns you may have with your physician.

The myth: If you have a family history of breast cancer, you are likely to develop breast cancer, too.

The truth: While women who have a family history of breast cancer are in a higher risk group, most women who have breast cancer have no family history. Statistically only about 10% of individuals diagnosed with breast cancer have a family history of this disease.

If you have a first degree relative with breast cancer: If you have a mother, daughter or sister who developed breast cancer below the age of 50, you should consider some form of regular diagnostic breast imaging starting 10 years before the age of your relative’s diagnosis.

If you have a second degree relative with breast cancer: If you have had a grandmother or aunt who was diagnosed with breast cancer, your risk increases slightly, but it is not in the same risk category as those who have a first degree relative with breast cancer.

If you have multiple generations diagnosed with breast cancer on the same side of the family, or if there are several individuals who are first degree relatives to one another, or several family members diagnosed under age 50, the probability increases that there is a breast cancer gene contributing to the cause of this familial history.

The myth: Breast cancer is contagious.

The truth: You cannot catch breast cancer or transfer it to someone else’s body. Breast cancer is the result of uncontrolled cell growth of mutated cells that begin to spread into other tissues within the breast. However, you can reduce your risk by practicing a healthy lifestyle, being aware of the risk factors and following an early detection plan so that you will be diagnosed early if breast cancer were to occur.

The myth: If the gene mutation BRCA1 or BRCA2 is detected in your DNA, you will definitely develop breast cancer.

The truth: According to the National Cancer Institute, regarding families who are known to carry BRCA1 or BRCA2, “not every woman in such families carries a harmful BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, and not every cancer in such families is linked to a harmful mutation in one of these genes. Furthermore, not every woman who has a harmful BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation will develop breast and/or ovarian cancer.But, a woman who has inherited a harmful mutation in BRCA1 or BRCA2 is about five times more likely to develop breast cancer than a woman who does not have such a mutation.”

For people who discover they have the harmful mutation, there are various proactive measures that can be done to reduce risk. These include taking a hormonal therapy called Tamoxifen or deciding to take a surgical prevention approach which is to have bilateral prophylactic mastectomies, usually done with reconstruction. Most women will also have ovaries and fallopian tubes removed as well since there is no reliable screening test for the early stages of developing ovarian cancer.

The myth: Antiperspirants and deodorants cause breast cancer.

The truth: Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) are not aware of any conclusive evidence linking the use of underarm antiperspirants or deodorants and the subsequent development of breast cancer.

— Courtesy of and the National Cancer Institute



Special to The Enterprise

Ski page: Epic race

October 03, 2013 |

Media Contact: Kelly Ladyga, (303) 404-1862,

Vail Resorts Announces The Epic Race, Offering an Epic Pass for Life to Guests Who Can Ski the World: 26 Resorts in Four Countries in One Season

The Epic Race challenges passholders to ski and ride 26 iconic mountains in four countries, including the U.S. (Colorado, Utah, Lake Tahoe, Minnesota and Michigan), Switzerland, France and Austria
Up to 10 winners will receive an Epic Pass for life

Registration for The Epic Race opens Nov. 1 at

BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Oct. 2, 2013 – This season Vail Resorts announced that the Epic Pass now includes 26 mountains in four countries. And now Vail Resorts is calling all globetrotting, Epic Pass-holding, die-hard skiers and snowboarders for The Epic Race – a season-long competition to visit all 26 resorts spread across four countries that make up the Epic Pass. The first 10 people to complete the race will receive an Epic Pass for life.

“When we launched the Epic Pass with five resorts in 2008, I said our guests wouldn’t be able to out-ski or ride this pass,” said Rob Katz chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. “Five years later, after adding three more countries and 21 additional resorts, we’re throwing down the gauntlet. If you can be one of the first to ski the world, you’ll ski for life.”

Starting Nov. 1, guests can register to Ski the World by visiting Each racer will need to ski or ride all 26 resorts on the Epic Pass (Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Arapahoe Basin and Eldora in Colorado; Canyons in Park City, Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood at Lake Tahoe; Afton Alps, Minnesota; Mt. Brighton, Michigan; Verbier, Switzerland; Arlberg, Austria – St. Anton, Lech, Zürs, St. Christoph and Stuben; and Les 3 Vallées, France – Courchevel, La Tania, Méribel, Brides-les-Bains, Les Menuires, Saint Martin de Belleville, Val Thorens and Orelle). Epic Racers will be asked to document and share their experience at each resort they visit to be eligible to win. All the content from the Epic Racers will be available at

“If there was any doubt that the Epic Pass is by far and away the snowsports industry’s best and most comprehensive pass, the experiences these contestants share should put the question to rest,” said Katz. “What other pass allows you to enjoy the steep and deep of the Sierra Nevada, the amazing powder of the Wasatch, the majesty of the Rockies, the urban hills in Michigan and Minnesota, the interconnectivity of the French Alps and the world’s largest linked ski area, the unmatched off-piste skiing and riding of the Swiss Alps, and the birthplace of modern Alpine skiing technique in the Tyrolean Alps?”

Epic Racers will be responsible for their own expenses in undertaking the Epic Race and no racer will be permitted to ski or ride more than one resort per day in the U.S. and two resorts per day in Europe to ensure they capture and enjoy the full experience of each mountain. Race winners receiving an Epic Pass for life will be able to ski or ride only the resorts operated by Vail Resorts in any given year. All rules and guidelines will be posted on on Nov. 1 and included in the registration materials provided to guests.

The Epic Pass features unlimited, unrestricted skiing and riding at Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Arapahoe Basin and Eldora in Colorado; Canyons in Park City, Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood at Lake Tahoe; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan. Furthermore, Epic Pass holders have the opportunity to extend their skiing and riding adventures from the U.S. to Europe with five free days at the renowned mountain resorts of Verbier, Switzerland, five free days at Arlberg, Austria and five free days at Les 3 Vallées, France. Vail Resorts is offering the industry’s best-selling season pass at $709 for adults and $369 for children (ages 5-12), but these prices are only guaranteed through Oct. 13, 2013. For more information about the 2013-2014 season pass line-up or to purchase a pass online, visit

“The Epic Pass is more attractive than ever, not just because of the access it provides to 26 mountains in four countries, but also because of the unprecedented on-mountain improvements of $130-140 million across our resorts for the upcoming season,” said Kirsten Lynch, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Vail Resorts. “Not since the opening of Blue Sky Basin at Vail have we seen such a significant terrain expansion at a Colorado ski resort as with the addition of Peak 6 at Breckenridge. We’re also adding a new high-speed six-person lift in Mid-Vail to get guests into the Back Bowls faster and opening a new on-mountain restaurant at the base of Beaver Creek’s famed Birds of Prey race course. And then there’s the fourth generation of EpicMix – Epic Academy – which offers a unique way to earn and share your accomplishments in our world-class ski and ride schools.”



Hold for Welcome: UCD building names story

September 27, 2013 |


Aggie Stadium – Opened in 2007, it is the home of Aggie field hockey, football and women’s lacrosse. It includes:

– Jim Sochor Field — Honoring Coach Sochor’s immeasurable and unparalleled contributions and dedication to Aggie football. He began his UC Davis coaching career in 1967 when he was hired for the baseball program. In 1970, when he took over as football head coach, the team had not had a winning season for 22 years and had not won a championship since 1915. Under Sochor, UC Davis would win 18 straight league championships, more than any other football program at any level in NCAA history, until he retired in 1988.
– Bob Foster Team Center — Foster graduated in 1962 as the Aggies’ second all-time leading rusher and would eventually join the coaching staff. Described as a “players coach,” he would work with the football team for more than 20 years, the last four as head coach, 1989-92, during which time he guided the Aggies to three league titles in four seasons, twice reaching the NCAA Division II championships. He also coached women’s tennis, leading the Aggies to a national title in 1980 (Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women), and he assisted with the gtrack team.
– Bruce Edwards Club Room — Alumnus (1960) who played football and ran track for UC Davis; he is a retired businessman from the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2011, he and his wife, Diane, made a $2 million commitment to Intercollegiate Athletics — the single largest philanthropic contribution to athletics in the university’s history — to support Aggie Stadium’s future maintenance, operations and enhancements.
Maurice J. Gallagher Jr. Hall — Opened in 2009 as the new home of the Graduate School of Management. The building is named in honor of Maurice J. Gallagher Jr., a Las Vegas airline executive, who, with his wife, Marcia, contributed $10 million toward the project and an endowment for the school. Maurice Gallagher received a bachelor’s degree in history from UC Davis in 1971, and went on to earn an MBA at UC Berkeley. He is majority owner, president and CEO of Las Vegas-based Allegiant Travel Co., the parent company of Allegiant Air. He served on the GSM advisory board in the early 1990s, has been a guest speaker in graduate business courses and was the school’s commencement keynote speaker in 2000 and 2011.

Ghausi Hall — In a 2010 ceremony, Dean Emeritus Mohammed S. Ghausi became the third dean to have a building named after him in the UC Davis College of Engineering. Ghausi Hall (formerly Engineering III), houses the civil engineering and applied science departments. Ghausi (pronounced Gow-see) served as dean from 1983 to 1996, a period of strategic growth marked by expanded teaching and research programs, and increased diversity — all of which raised the profile of UC Davis engineering. He was instrumental in the development of three buildings: Academic Surge, Engineering III (now named after him and Engineering II (renamed Kemper Hall in 2003, in honor of former Dean John D. Kemper). Founding Dean Roy Bainer also has a building named after him.

Warren and Leta Giedt Hall — It comprises three lecture theaters, including the 278-seat Ted and Rand Schaal Auditorium, and two classrooms. Construction of the $7.5 million building was supported by a gift of $2.5 million from Warren Giedt, professor emeritus in the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, and his late wife, Leta, as well as a gift of $400,000 from alumnus and former geology lecturer Rand Schaal and his father, Ted Schaal (see Ted and Rand Schaal Aquatics Center below). Warren Geidt attended the Geidt Hall dedication ceremony, March 12, 2007, and died 11 days later at age 86.

Barbara K. and W. Turrentine Jackson Hall (1,801-seat main theatre in the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts) — W. Turrentine “Turpie” Jackson, a UC Davis history professor, and his wife, Barbara, an award-winning costume designer and wardrobe mistress, and longtime volunteer with the Sacramento Opera and other local theater groups, were early supporters of the university’s Center for the Arts Campaign. In fact, Barbara was among the volunteer leaders of the $30 million effort. Professor Jackson died in 2000, and a year later, when construction crews put the center’s last steel beam in place, Barbara announced a $5 million gift to the campaign. “This gift stands as her extraordinary commitment to help build interest and enthusiasm for music, theater and dance in the region,” then-Chancellor Larry N. Vanderhoef said at the time. “It reflects her deep devotion to the performing arts in our communities and to this campus.” The Jacksons also endowed two faculty chairs, one in western U.S. history and the other in orchestral conducting.

Jungerman Hall — One of the older buildings on central campus finally got an official name June 1, 2011, with the dedication of the building housing the Crocker Nuclear Laboratory as John A. Jungerman Hall. Jungerman joined the faculty at UC Davis in 1951, the same year that the College of Letters and Science was formed. He was a graduate student at UC Berkeley and Los Alamos during World War II, and worked on the Manhattan Project. He witnessed the first test of an atomic bomb, Trinity,” at White Sands, N.M., in 1945.

Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science

– August A. Busch III Brewing and Food Science Laboratory — Busch is a former president and chief executive officer of Anheuser-Busch Cos., which has a foundation that gave $5 million to the UC Davis brewing and food science lab project.

– Jess Jackson Sustainable Winery Building — Made possible by a $3 million pledge from the late Jess Jackson and his wife, Barbara Banke, proprietor of Jackson Family Wine.

Peter A. Rock Hall — Known to thousands of alums as Chem 194, this 415-seat lecture hall got a new name in 2012, honoring the late Professor Peter A. Rock. He never taught anywehere but UC Davis – 42 years altogether, until his death in 2006 at the age of 66. He was the founding dean of the Division of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, serving from 1995 to 2003.

Ted and Rand Schaal Aquatics Center — Opened in 2004, the complex features an Olympic-sized pool, locker rooms, team rooms, office space and permanent seating for approximately 500 spectators. Named after former geology lecturer Rand Schaal and his father, Ted Schaal.

Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art –
This project (ground breaking is expected in 2014) began with a $2 million gift from Margrit Mondavi and a naming gift of $10 million from Jan Shrem and his wife, Maria Manetti Shrem. UC Davis will inaugurate the museum as an institution dedicated to combining vanguard artistic and curatorial innovation with audience engagement. Exploring new means to connect visitors with art and participating in the process of art are two aspects of the new museum that are at the very center of its vision. The museum will encourage interdisciplinary exchange, provide means to make an impact on curricular development and create informal educational opportunities.
Gladys Valley Hall — The Wayne and Gladys Valley Foundation provided $10.7 million for this building, part of the School of Veterinary Medicine. The building includes two auditoriums, five classrooms and seminar rooms, a computer classroom and conference areas, as well as rooms for training students in diagnostic imaging, clinical pathology and clinical procedures. Opened in 2006. Wayne Valley was the founder and majority owner of San Leandro-based Citation Builders, which became one of the largest builders of single-family homes in California.

Larry N. Vanderhoef Quad
Larry and Rosalie Vanderhoef Studio Theatre

Both naming honors were announced at a retirement tribute, June 2009, as Larry Vanderhoef prepared to step down in mid-August as chancellor, after 25 years of service to UC Davis (10 years as provost and executive vice chancellor, and 15 years as chancellor).

The Larry N. Vanderhoef Quad, at the campus’s south entry, is bounded by the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center, Gallagher Hall (home of the Graduate School of Management), and the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. The fourth side will have the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art (ground breaking is expected in 2014).

The quad includes a fountain named after the Morris family, in recognition of Professor Emerita Mary Ann Morris’ donation to the project. Officially, it’s the Morris Foundatin — In Memory of Madison and Nora Morris and Zoa Morris-Lycan (Professor Morris’ parents and aunt). Mary Ann Morris was a faculty member in textiles and clothiong from 1962 to 1987, and an early member of an organization that became known as Friends of UC Davis Presents, precursor of today’s Friends of the Mondavi Center.

The theatre, a flexible performance space in the Mondavi Center, was formerly known as the Studio Theatre. The new name pays tribute to Chancellor Vanderhoef’s vision in proposing to build a performing arts center and his steadfast leadership in getting it done, and his wife’s deep commitment to arts education for all ages, for example, by introducing schoolchildren to the arts at the Mondavi Center.

Marya Welch Tennis Center — Marya Welch, who died in 2012 at the age of 95, was a pioneer in women’s athletics at UC Davis, as a physical education instructor, coach and administrator. Her philanthropy extended to athletics (the tennis center) and UC Davis arts. The tennis center, developed on the site of the old Hickey Courts, hosted its first match in 2005, between professionals John McEnroe and Wayne Ferreira. UC Davis rededicated the center in April 2013.

Editor’s note: This story originally appeared in The Enterprise on Feb. 24, 2003.

By Crystal Ross O’Hara

Most locals are well aware of Robert and Margrit Mondavi. In September 2001, the vintner and his wife announced the largest gift in UC Davis’ history: $35 million to name UCD’s performing arts center and to establish the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science.

But what about other buildings on campus, whose names — whether established through financial, academic or administrative donations — have faded from our memory? The Enterprise has chosen to explore some of the more well-known buildings on campus to learn more about their history and namesakes.

Walter A. Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center

When it officially opened on Picnic Day in 1992, this building seemed oddly out of place and facing the wrong direction.

But the 21,000-square-foot building now seems more at home nestled among the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts and the UCD Hotel and Conference Center. It is a key piece in making the corner of Old Davis Road and Mrak Hall Drive the south-facing entrance to the campus.

The $4.8 million Walter A. Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center was built almost entirely from private contributions, including a $1 million gift from Walter D. and Carol L. Buehler. The center was named in honor of Walter’s late father, a structural engineer who worked on many of the buildings on campus.

The building houses the Cal Aggie Alumni Association — which uses a likeness of the building as its logo — the International Agricultural Visitors Program and the Visitors Services Department.

“This center, with its inviting openness and many services, will be a point of entry for many — from alumni and longtime friends to first-time visitors, new students and their families, potential employers of our students and guests from overseas,” former UCD Chancellor Ted Hullar said during an opening day speech.

Asmundson Hall

Asmundson Hall, which houses the department of vegetable crops, was once home to the department of avian sciences. It was built in 1954. The building is named in honor of Vigfus Samundur Asmundson, a pioneer in poultry research. His work included research into turkey and chicken genetics and egg formation.

He was born in Iceland in 1895 and died in 1974 after 42 years at UCD. But his legacy goes beyond research and academics. He was the father of the late Vigfus Asmundson, who served as mayor of Davis in the early 1970s and was married to former Davis City Councilwoman Ruth Asmundson.

Freeborn Hall

Before the grand Mondavi Center, the campus community would gather in Freeborn Hall for entertainment, lectures and the chancellor’s annual convocation. This 52,000-square-foot auditorium is named for Stanley Barron Freeborn. Freeborn Hall opened in 1961, a year after the death of its namesake at the age of 69. It continues to be a major gathering place for campus activities.

Freeborn became the Davis campus’ first provost in 1952 and was named chancellor in 1958. According to “Windows on the Past: A Personal History of Campus Buildings,” a book written and published by the Prytanean Honor Society in 1984, Freeborn gained recognition as an authority on malaria and malaria carrying mosquitos. The medical entomologist even has a mosquito named after him, the Anopheles freeborni.

Freeborn retired in 1959 at the age of 68. “Windows on the Past” notes that upon his death, former University of California President Clark Kerr commented, “In all his contributions to so many people and in so many ways, he was as friendly as he was wise.”

Hickey Gymnasium

A man of many talents, Vernard B. Hickey led a full life. An athlete at Washington State University, Hickey was a halfback in the first East-West Shrine game in 1925. He later went on to coach a wide variety of sports, including serving as football coach for UCD from 1937 to 1948. He served as athletic director at Davis from 1961 until he retired in 1967.

Somehow, according to “Windows on the Past,” Hickey also managed to find time to serve as a Davis City Council member, mayor (1954-58), police commissioner, county head of the Red Cross and chairman of the Chamber of Commerce. Hickey was named Citizen of the Year in 1962.

The storied Hickey Gym was built in two stages. The first part was built in 1938 and the second portion of the building was completed in 1963. It was named after Hickey in 1972. He died in 1987 at the age of 87.

Meyer Hall

For 18 years, James H. Meyer was chancellor at UCD, taking the helm in 1969, at the beginning of some of the most turbulent times in U.S. history. Through marches and protests, Meyer gained a reputation as a man who students could trust as they expressed their anger over the Vietnam War. By the time he retired in 1987, Meyer had also seen the campus almost double in population.

An Idaho native, Meyer came to UCD in 1951. In a 1994 interview, he told The Enterprise that he had always assumed he would be a farmer, like his father. But his time at the University of Wisconsin changed his mind.

“I admired some of the faculty and what they did,” he said. “The university is an exciting place, I thought. That’s where ideas are born and taught.”

Long after his retirement, Meyer could still be found creating and teaching ideas. He was fortunate enough to work in an office in a building named in his honor. In 1988, UCD’s Food and Agricultural Sciences Building was named Meyer Hall.

On Oct. 12, 2002 Meyer died at the age of 80. At a memorial that December, then-Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef said of him, “He was the best mentor and one of the most loyal friends I’ve ever had.”

Mrak Hall

Home of the UCD administration, Mrak Hall was completed in 1966 and named in honor of Emil Mrak, the university’s second chancellor. He served from 1959 to 1969.

Mrak was renowned for his work on the preservation of foods and was one of the world’s authorities on the biology of yeasts. A California native, Mrak received his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees from UC Berkeley, where he became chairman of the food science and technology department in 1948. In 1951, he and the department moved to Davis.

Many of the campus’ buildings were constructed during Mrak’s era as chancellor. This includes Olson, Sproul, Wellman, Kerr, Briggs, Bainer, Roessler, Kleiber and Mrak halls.

“He led UCD during the most rapid growth period this campus has ever seen,” Meyer told The Enterprise in a 1994 interview. “He provided the character and foundation that has led to the university’s present stature.”

Nearly 1,300 people attended a memorial service for Mrak after his death in April 1987.

Shields Library

Known as the “Father of the University Farm,” Peter J. Shields is credited with starting the school that later became UCD.

According to Alyce Williams Jewett’s “Saga of UCD,” Shields conceived of the idea at the 1899 State Fair after inquiring how a judge there knew how to evaluate the quality of butter. When he discovered that California had no such school for learning these techniques, he set out to establish one.

He spent the next few years convincing the Legislature of the need for a state dairy and experimental farm.

On March 18, 1905, Shields’ work paid off, when his bill to establish a school became a law.

“This was a day of solemn satisfaction to those of us who sensed what it would mean to California and the golden future which we felt fate had in store for her,” Shields said.

In 1909, his wife celebrated the campus’ first year by holding a Basket Picnic, the precursor to today’s Picnic Day.

Shields served almost 50 years as a Superior Court judge, but maintained an interest in the Davis campus. He died in 1962 at the age of 100.

The original library was named for Shields in 1972. The current, four-story 386,000-square-foot building is the result of several years of remodeling, completed in 1993.

Sproul Hall

Every UC campus has a Sproul Hall.

At UCD, Sproul Hall houses the departments of comparative literature, religious studies and foreign languages. At nine stories tall, it is the tallest building in Yolo County.

Named for former UC President Robert Gordon Sproul, it was completed in 1963. A San Francisco native, Sproul attended UC Berkeley and became the first UC graduate to become a UC president. He served from 1930 to 1958, overseeing vast expansion of the university.

According to “The Centennial Record of the University of California,” “Sproul’s outstanding contribution during his 28-year administration was the multiple-campus expansion of the university to meet the demands for higher education in widely separated parts of the state, while maintaining one institution governed by one board of regents and one president.” Sproul died in 1975 at the age of 84.

Storer Hall

Dedicated in 1969, the six-story Storer Hall is home to Evolution and Ecology, formerly known as Zoology, and the Center for Population Biology.

In 1923, Tracy I. Storer came to UCD as an assistant professor of zoology. He later went on to become the founding chairman of the Department of Zoology. But Storer brought more to Davis than his own academic strengths. His wife, Ruth Storer, was the only female graduate in UC Berkeley’s medical school class of 1913 and was the first female pediatrician in Yolo County.

In 1960, the Storers established an endowed lectureship in the life sciences, which brings prominent biologists to UCD from other institutions.

Tracy Storer died in 1973 at the age of 84. His wife remained active in the Davis community until her death in 1986.

Wright Hall

The colorful Celeste Turner Wright Hall houses a 500-seat main theater used for a variety of performances. In 1997, at the age of 91, the pioneering Wright became one of only a handful of women to have campus buildings named in their honor.

Wright came to UCD in 1928 to become, as she said, “a refining influence on the farm boys.” She was the first tenured female faculty member at UCD. Her academic career spanned more than 50 years and included work as a teacher of English, Latin, German and dramatic arts.

Upon her death in 1999 at the age of 93, Vanderhoef said, “Celeste Turner Wright was a pioneer in women’s search for professional recognition in the academy, an untiring advocate of the humanities and a person who never missed an opportunity to strengthen our community bonds.”



Enterprise staff

WEL: 2013 Welcome outline

September 05, 2013 |


Good CanStock puzzle images:
Close-Up Of Small Puzzle
Puzzle frame
Incomplete puzzle
Gray cardboard jigsaw puzzle (good for fact box…already made into cutout on desktop)
close up of one blue puzzle piece
Complete puzzle (at an interesting angle)
Group of white paper jigsaw puzzles
Puzzle Border (put a photo in this)

FIND: Davis Bicycles, Explorit, DCA/Autumn, Davis Art Center, Paws for Thought, Ask Maddy to write a theater story

Monthly flea market
Treat trail/Dia de los muertos
Arboretum plant sale
Movies in the park
Bike repair stations: on campus, around town
AYSO standalone photo/Opening Day LL
Comedy Central coverage as a hidden gem: Dark Sky, snoring, Toad Tunnel, potholes, fruit trees for homeless,



X A to Z listing
X Activities (VG)
Tour de Cluck
X Murals all over town
X Davis Live music festival — Landon
X It’s official, Davis is California’s ‘Coolest’ city with Cool Davis sidebar
X New website puts downtown at your fingertips
X Art

X Building the Mondavi Center season involves years of planning to get stars aligned (Jeff Hudson, with photos, box of upcoming highlights)
X Tree Davis: Fall tree planting 101
Ceramics conference
X Tours (VG)
X Parks
X Nextdoor story on neighborhood web — Tom (saved in WordPress)
X Village Harvest (Anna)
X Autumn’s DMA column
X School names (Jeff)
X Helping hand: SPCA
X Helping hand: STEAC

X Building names on campus/around town
Warren Roberts is an Arboretum all star!
X Sports round up — Kim
X Sports map — Shawn
X Aggie nicknames — Katie
X US News ranking — very recent story
X Bodega Marine facility
X Olive Oil
X Confucius Institute
X Arboretum GATEway

X Best bike rides (use Sunday best story by me)
London double-decker story (by Fred and me)
X Bike commuting
X Bike fixit stations
X Bike loop map
X Roundabouts
X Street names?
X wine map
X City of Davis map
X Getting here to there
X Rock talk: Yolo Bypass



Rock talk: Stones at bypass levee are a bulletin board

September 24, 2013 |

* Editor’s note: This story was originally published in October 2010.

A few weeks ago, the rocks read, “Jesus loves you,” but that message is long gone. By now, another message, perhaps the letters of a campus organization or a political preference, graces the slope of the levee marking the beginning of the Yolo Causeway. Travelers on eastbound I-80 have just seconds to glimpse the latest message spelled out in spray-painted rocks.

Davis High School students Margaret Starbuck, Anna Sturla and Linda Wogulis chose the spot to write out “No on 8″ during the 2008 election season. At the time, the girls were leaders in Emerson Junior High’s Gay-Straight Alliance. Their message remained visible for “about a day” before a conservative group contradicted it, Sturla said.

While many groups choose to leave their messages at night, Starbuck, Sturla and Wogulis acted during the day. “We didn’t have anything to hide,” Sturla said.

The girls had the approval and assistance of their parents, who drove them to the site and fetched supplies. “At one point Anna’s dad went to get a machete so we could cut the weeds down on the side of the highway so people could see it better,” Starbuck said.

College groups are much more reluctant to disclose that they have rearranged the rocks.

Despite the fact that a photo of the rocks as arranged by Alpha Gamma Omega fraternity is prominently displayed on Davis Wiki, the group refused to comment. When asked, one fraternity brother said he would find an appropriate person to talk about the activity. Without covering the phone’s mouthpiece, he laughed and told a friend he was going to hang up. When The Enterprise called back, he explained, sounding a bit embarrassed, “Anything involving that is sensitive.”

Arbel Bedak, a UC Davis senior majoring in music, admitted to having rearranged the rocks with several organizations, though he wouldn’t say which. Some groups use the practice as an initiation and bonding activity for new members, and he didn’t want to ruin “many years’ of tradition and surprise” for any potential inductees. “There are high school students in Davis that might be coming to UCD,” he warned.

Though driving out to the Yolo Causeway at a time when only college students are awake to perform hard labor may seem cruel, Bedak works to create “a very positive environment.”

Returning members don’t do any heavy lifting, but they “cheer (the workers) on with encouraging words.” He emphasized that the activity is a team-building exercise, not hazing. “It really is about becoming a member of the (group) and encouraging them to work in a large group,” he said.

The end result: the group’s name finished in time for the morning commute. With a large group, rearranging the rocks takes a little over an hour, but with fewer workers, students can struggle in the dark for two or three hours.

At least in Bedak’s experience, there’s never been any alcohol present. Groups take appropriate “precautionary measures” to stay out of the way of drunk drivers who may not see students in the dark. “We usually coordinate with the county police. They know that we’re out there,” he said.

Clean up, clean up, everybody do your share

Some UCD students leave a mess behind them. “Occasionally I go out there and there are beer bottles everywhere and trash,” Robin Kulakow, the executive director of the Yolo Basin Foundation, complained.

According to Sergeant Lance Faille from the Yolo County Sheriff’s Department, “It’s not vandalism, because they’re not destroying anything.” Besides, there’s not much the sheriff can do, even if messages are obscene or inappropriate. However, if people block the roadway while they’re rearranging the rocks, the sheriff can get involved to resolve traffic issues.

The levee that serves as a bulletin board also is the entrance to the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area. The Yolo Basin Foundation leads environmental education and conservation programs in the area. “It would just be nice if the people doing the rocks remembered that it’s a public place,” she said.

“My employees do clean up on a fairly regular basis,” Dave Feliz said. He manages the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area for the California Department of Fish and Game. “It can be a mess,” he added.

Employees of the Department of Fish and Game are usually the first to arrive on the scene every morning. During hunting season, they sometimes run into groups putting the finishing touches on their messages. “There’s been times we’ll open the gate to the wildlife area — during the duck season we’re there quite early — and we see people doing the rocks,” he said.

Message center

Over the years, Feliz has noticed the names of student organizations, personal messages to individuals, and without fail, some sort of cheer or jeer every time UCD plays Sacramento State University.

Both Kulakow and Feliz recall the message left in November 1997, when President Clinton came to dedicate the wildlife area. Someone wrote “Vic’s Place” across the levee on the day of the ceremony. “Vic Fazio was our congressman, and he was instrumental in establishing the wildlife area,” Kulakow explained.

No one knows exactly when well-wishers and pranksters began leaving messages in the area. According to Bob Bowen, the public relations manager for the city of Davis, the practice has existed for at least 50 years. “I was messing with them in the late ’60s, early ’70s as a Davis High and UCD student,” he said.

Shipley Walters, who is the author of nine books on the history of Yolo County, said that the levees and causeway were built during World War I, but the place probably became a bulletin board sometime after I-80 opened in 1962.

“It just happened to be a visible place,” Walters said. In many towns, residents leave messages on a visible hill as “a sign of civic pride.” “We don’t have any hills here, so people chose that place to make a statement,” Walters said.

The first organization to rearrange the rocks “could have been a local peace group,” Walters speculated, due to the large number of peace signs left at the spot in the ’60s and ’70s.

The exact origin story has probably been lost to history, which is fitting for such a practice. It’s “a mysterious thing that happens in the darkness, and you see the results in the morning,” Feliz said.



WEL3: UCD festivals

September 06, 2013 |

(Originally published in March…should have sidebar of festivals)

With spring comes UC Davis’ annual festivals and culture weeks, which mix the educational with the celebratory: swirling traditional Mexican dance and hip-hop, fashion and film, and food from kimchi to fry bread.

Some of the marquee events for the public include Asian Pacific Culture Night, the UC Davis Powwow, the Danzantes del Alma dance show, La Gran Tardeada and Black Family Day.

On the heels of those smaller events come the big two: the Whole Earth Festival and, ready or not, Picnic Day.

Some of the culture weeks that have long since become traditions themselves began when groups of students banded together to make something of their own on campus.

Black Family Day, for instance, started in 1969 as a barbecue on the Quad attended by 40 or 50 people.

It began as an alternative to Picnic Day, of which black students didn’t feel a part, Sacramento State University government professor Stan Oden said during an alumni event in 2009.

Andrea Gaytan, the assistant director of the UCD Cross Cultural Center, said the culture weeks are a “matter of pride and celebration of our presence here, of perseverance for many of the groups who’ve seen growth and change. I think it’s a time to celebrate the presence of underrepresented students on campus.”

All of the events are meant to be inclusive, and each year students find inventive ways to reach out to one another. This year, for instance, Asian Pacific Culture Week’s culminating show will open with Chinese dancing to the rhythm of Japanese taiko drums.

The same event also will feature a special first-of-its-kind performance when students from the Hmong Student Union and Vietnamese Student Association will dance with the folkórico dance troupe Danzantes del Alma.

Program coordinator Fong Tran said it’s been fun to see student dancers in meetings have ah-ha moments of inspiration — when they discover common movements or the use of fans in Vietnamese and Mexican dances.

The culture weeks, Tran said, are “an institutional way of investing in the diversity of the campus, a reminder to build bridges; but they also pay homage to the unique cultures and the contributions of people of color on campus.”

Some of the very same celebrations began as struggles.

Gaytan knows that well.

In 1992, she joined classmates at UCD in a hunger strike that resulted in the creation of the Cross Cultural Center, which now serves thousands of students annually.

Having taught English at home and abroad, Gaytan returned to campus and her present job, pleased to see what devoted students, staff and administrators built.

“It’s very fulfilling,” she said. “The Cross Cultural Center is better than I ever imagined it could be. I think of the staff who believed in the center and created a safe space for students who’ve come through the door, slept on its couches and taken advantage of its programs.”

— Reach Cory Golden at or 530-747-8046. Follow him on Twitter at @cory_golden



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

WEL3: Revved up: Hyundai engineers head to UCD

September 21, 2013 |

UC Davis and Hyundai Motor Corp. on Tuesday turned the ignition on the first-ever corporate-funded center on campus.

The world’s fourth-largest automaker will send eight of its engineers at a time to learn and carry out research, much like graduate students, support student research and give students a chance to rub elbows with professionals.

The company has made a three-year commitment to the project, dubbed the Hyundai Center of Excellence in Vehicle Dynamic Systems and Control.

“The goal is twofold: to operate an academic-training program and conduct research projects designed to make Hyundai vehicles safer, better-handling and more fun to drive,” said Enrique Lavernia, dean of the College of Engineering, at a ribbon-cutting inside Bainer Hall.

Hyundai will spend $940,000 on the center in its first year, including the renovation of office space and a conference room.

The first group of company engineers arrived in January. They’ll be on campus until October.

“I would like to say that this is only the beginning, and that the Hyundai-Kia Motor Company will provide continued support to make this center as successful as possible and to leave a very solid milestone for great partnership between industry and academia,” said Woong-chul Yang, vice chairman of the company’s research and development division.

“I believe that this center will not only train our engineers, but spur the excitement and passion of engineering students at UC Davis by giving them exposure to industry.”

Yang earned his doctorate from UCD in 1986. Returning to Davis is “really emotional,” he said.

“I’m so proud and excited to have this event at the place I got my Ph.D. under the guidance of professor Dean Karnopp and professor Don Margolis, who made me who I am now,” Yang said.

Karnopp and Margolis, both professors emeritus, will co-direct the center. Assistant professor Jae Wan Park and Zac Sabato will act as associate directors.

The presence of the company engineers is a boon to the department of mechanical space engineering, which is home to 32 full-time faculty, 150 graduate students and 350 undergraduates.

Said Lavernia: “I cannot over-stress the significance of such industry involvement with higher education, which grants our students and faculty real-world engagement, helps our graduates become better employees, fast-tracks laboratory research to commercial production and ensures that our academic curriculum more precisely serves the needs of the economy and society.”

Hyundai builds hybrid, fuel cell and electric cars, so as problems emerge with new technology, faculty and students will be able to work alongside the company’s engineers to solve them.

The college’s Institute for Transportation Studies works with a who’s who of major auto manufacturers on sustainable transportation issues, but the number of engineers Hyundai has sent to campus is something new.

Its engineers also will be able to get to know engineers from other companies on the “neutral ground” of the campus, Lavernia said.

“There’s a recognition (on the part of industry) that there’s a big need for engineering students and faculty and staff. I think companies are starting to realize that they need to come to the universities,” he said.

The college is currently in talks with an aerospace company about a similar initiative.

Such arrangements also should be a plus for student recruitment. “They see the name, they see the space and they want to work in it,” Lavernia said.

Not that the College of Engineering is sorely in need of help in that regard: This year, it attracted about 11,000 applications for 720 freshman slots and 1,500 for 175 transfer slots.

The campus plans to add 5,000 students by 2020. Because engineering students make up about 16 percent of students, the college likely will make up a similar proportion of new faculty hires, Lavernia said.

A bigger task ahead will be remodeling and adding buildings and other infrastructure, for which state funding has dried up. That’s where corporate partners like Hyundai are likely to play an increasing role, he said.

“That’s the greatest challenge for us and for the campus,” Lavernia said.

— Reach Cory Golden at or 530-747-8046. Follow him on Twitter at @cory_golden



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

paperless classrooms oped

September 18, 2013 |

Below, please find an op-ed called “Paperless Classrooms” by Sherry Maysonave, author of ““EggMania: Where’s the Egg In Exactly.” The piece is available for you to share with your readers in exchange for the byline that appears below the article. Please let me know if you decide to use the article, and I can provide you with a book cover and/or author photo. Thank you for your time and consideration.


Stacey J. Miller, Book Publicist
S. J. Miller Communications
Randolph, MA
telephone: 781-986-0732

Paperless Classrooms
By Sherry Maysonave

The 21st century learner is hard-wired for technology. Students today have a different profile of cognitive skills which resonate with digital tools. They expect multimedia, and they become quickly bored without it.

Schools have embraced the mobile-device wave with tablets (iPads and others), which are now almost as common as blackboards in classrooms across America. School districts are converting textbooks to ebooks to cut costs and to more easily update them. Does all this mean we are moving toward paperless classrooms? And is this good for our children?

The answer is a categorical yes. Learning occurs based upon students’ engagement levels, and no doubt, kids today are riveted by digital devices. It’s clear as a bell — a school bell, in fact. It would be short-sighted and illogical to not bring mobile-device technology and the new ways of learning into educational settings.

Leading educators agree that multisensory and multidimensional teaching methods are what engage kids today, and are most easily achieved with digital programs. The principal advantage of such pedagogy is that multiple areas of students’ brains can be activated at one time. Neuroscientists say such brain activity vastly increases long-term learning potential.

Tech-savvy teachers claim that they are far more effective because tablets act as extra sets of hands for them. With a plethora of instructional apps to choose from, teachers can manage and assess classroom data and respond in real time. In a nutshell, they can provide better-quality personalized instruction, meeting the needs of students with wide-ranging skill levels, and all in a timely manner.

Teachers are not replaced by tablets — hardly so. Teachers are still the heart of education and are crucial to the success of any program, digital or otherwise. Yet think of the advantage they have by more easily breathing life into subject matter with animated, three-dimensional visuals. This feature alone has been shown to increase retention rates up to six times higher than the one-dimensional static visuals found in traditional text books. Yet it’s not only visuals that are producing learning gains; enhanced sound plays a role, too. Interactive digital programs requiring touch can employ all three of the primary learning modalities—visual, audio, and kinesthetic—and do so simultaneously.

Interestingly, special-needs students, including blind, deaf, and autistic children, are also showing increased engagement. Test results show they, too, are having accelerated and improved learning comprehension through the use of digital tablets in their instructional programs.

Awash in research, hundreds of studies have been conducted regarding technology-based learning, many of which are funded by technology companies. Ignoring those and focusing solely on independent research, the results remain staggering in favor of technology use. What’s the bottom line? Higher tests scores and improved attitudes, especially about reading and doing math and science. Students were also shown to be more motivated, to participate more, and to have increased comprehension. These impressive findings should make the most lackluster educators and parents jump up and cheer.

The U.S. Department of Education has done its due diligence, too. After analyzing data from technology-rich schools, it concluded this: “The use of technology resulted in increased attendance and educational gains for all students regardless of age, race, parental income, or other characteristics.” That’s profound and inspiring.

Even in the face of such positive evidence, screen time, particularly the large doses when considering extended periods during the school day, remains a concern for many parents and educators. While it’s true we do not fully understand long-term effects just yet, studies done in the past five years found there’s increased relational skills—helping behaviors, collaboration, cooperation, and discussion—taking place among students in classrooms employing digital devices. This relieves some of the angst about socialization. In addition, many teachers are using Skype and digital programs to connect with students in same-grade classrooms around the world, raising global awareness, cultural understandings, and most importantly, empathy, which is pivotal to healthy socialization.

It’s just common sense that with kids getting substantial screen time at school, parents will need to step up their responsibility at home by providing additional socialization opportunities and setting digital-device limits. Sleep disruption is another concern of overdoing screen time. Numerous neurological studies show that sleep patters can be disrupted, but mainly when kids (and adults) are allowed to take devices to bed and fall asleep with them nearby. The light that emanates from electronics has been found to interrupt the making of melatonin, and essential sleep hormone the brain naturally makes.

Overall, the screen time issue has been debated for a decade or more. Hours of violent video games and droning televisions would indeed have negative effects on anyone, particularly children. Dr. Dimitri A. Christakis from Seattle Children’s Institute, associated with the University of Washington, Seattle, had this to say about screen time for kids: “The quantity of media consumed has been unduly emphasized. It is not that quantity is unimportant, but the effects of media upon children are mediated more by what is watched than how much is watched.”

A new study released just this year by the Pearson Foundation made significant distinctions in this direction. It found that negative behaviors and bad moods did not occur in children using digital devices for extended periods in directed, school settings when appropriate breaks were required and when the material was highly educational versus pure gaming entertainment.

You may say, this is all well and good for high-schoolers, but not younger children. Surprisingly, a study conducted in Maine showed that even kindergarteners, who had been exposed to educational ebooks and language arts-oriented apps, tested as having higher literacy rates. They were either already reading or had developed keen language-arts skills essential to reading readiness.

School districts that can afford electronic devices, have benefactors, or have partnered with banks and Chamber of Commerce groups to employ them in their classrooms are on track. What’s troublesome are the districts that are establishing policies of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device, from smart phones to tablets). Lower income children stand to suffer socially and educationally with these policies. In the face of shrinking budgets, we must back our schools and support them in attaining proper funding for technology that can be used by all students.

The report card is out: Mobile-device technology is helping kids to be smarter, to enjoy learning and improved achievement, and to be prepared for the future job market which will no doubt require high-level technology skills in a global economy. And it’s greener; just think of the trees that are smiling as we move closer to paperless classrooms.

By Sherry Maysonave, author of “EggMania: Where’s the Egg in Exactly?” Visit her online at———————————————————————–
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Special to The Enterprise

WEL: Captions for stand alone volunteer/club photos

September 13, 2013 |

* Soroptimist International, an organization for business and professional women, makes gifts to the community at large and especially encourages — financially and otherwise — outstanding young female athletes and women re-entering the job market or an academic field. Local residents have two choices: Soroptimist International of Davis meets Wednesdays at noon at the Odd Fellows Hall, 415 Second St, and Soroptimist International of Greater Davis meets on the first and third Wednesdays at 7 p.m. at FamiliesFirst, 2100 Fifth St. For more information, visit and

* Davis is proud of its active Veterans of Foreign Wars chapter, which works to promote better benefits for veterans of military service. For more information, visit

* And the Odd Fellows Hall has long been the scene of potluck suppers, pancake breakfasts, card parties, bazaars and other fundraising events to support the community work of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Rebekahs. Meetings are on the second Saturday of the month at 8:45 a.m. at the Odd Fellows Hall at 415 Second St. For more information, visit

Team Davis is a local non-profit organization established in 2006 to help enrich the lives of children and adults with developmental, cognitive and/or physical disabilities living in or near Davis. Team Davis sponsors athletic, social, cultural and recreational activities that help build physical skills, a sense of camaraderie, and a more fully integrated connection with the Davis community for our participants and their families and support staff. Weekly practices for several sports are held during the year, including basketball, track, swimming, golf, soccer, bocce ball and softball. Team Davis participates in Special Olympics’ tournaments with other teams from Northern California. There also are a number of weekly or one-time activities. Currently, 90 athletes from the Davis area participate in one or more Team Davis activity during the year.

* The mission of Friends of Allied Nonprofits is to benefit 12 mental-health agencies through its consignment shop, All Things Right & Relevant, and through R&R Thrift. For more information, visit

* A helping organization that began in Davis and serves the entire county is STEAC (Short-Term Emergency Aid Committee), staffed mostly by volunteers. STEAC sees that help is there when the situation doesn’t seem to fit any other agency or service.

STEAC, accepting referrals from established agencies, quietly and effectively provides aid without red tape in times of immediate need. STEAC volunteers maintain food and clothing closets, can arrange for temporary shelter and can provide transportation in case of a family crisis.

* Senior citizens keep the Davis Senior Center, 646 A St., jumping, with an amazing number of fun activities, excursions, potluck parties and dances. The center also serves as a resource center for seniors, providing information about transportation, health and more. For more information, call 530-757-5696 or visit

* Many nonprofit agencies focusing on human services have volunteer members serving on their boards and working actively on fund-raising, community education and other projects.

Some of the local nonprofit organizations that depend on volunteers are … Yolo Crisis Nursery



Enterprise staff

Starting at the bottom to give kids a better chance

September 11, 2013 |

Enclosed is an op-ed on a study on infant care just in time for “National Diaper Need Awareness Week”, which is during the week of September the 9th. The authors are, Joanne Samuel Goldblum, the executive director of National Diaper Bank Network and Dr. Megan Smith of Yale University Child Study Center and School for Public Health. Please let me know if you are interested in using this piece. Photos of the authors are available and credit to American Forum is appreciated.
Denice Zeck
American Forum

Starting at the bottom to give kids a better chance

Dr. Megan Smith and Joanne Samuel Goldblum

Child poverty has been worsening in this country for a decade, to the point where one in five of our children is ensnared by a web of injustice and simple bad luck that diminishes their present and casts a shadow over their future. The causes are so many and varied that no one has been able to develop a corrective strategy that is likely to be implemented, particularly in a time of austerity.

We do not offer a comprehensive plan either – just one, simple, achievable action step that would make a tremendous difference: We should make sure that every child in America has enough diapers to stay clean, dry and healthy.

Our research shows that it is common for low-income families to be unable to buy an adequate supply of diapers for their children. In a recent study published in the journal Pediatrics, we found that nearly 30 percent of low-income mothers could not afford to change their children as frequently as they wished.

The want of something as simple as a package of diapers can keep parents out of the workforce and place babies at enormous risk.

Most child-care providers require parents to supply disposable diapers for their children. A parent who cannot comply with this simple request cannot work or attend job training or other programs designed to help people improve their lot. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families often requires attendance at such programs, so parents risk loss of TANF benefits. Children miss opportunities for early childhood education, and thus the achievement gap widens.

Our research found that mothers who cannot provide enough diapers are more likely to report difficulty with stress management, depression and coping with trauma. These mental health needs were even more pronounced in mothers who had trouble obtaining diapers than in mothers who reported food insecurity. Maternal stress and depression are strongly associated with developmental and health problems in children that can have lifelong effects.

Babies who are left in wet and soiled diapers are likely to get rashes and infections. Furthermore, they cry a lot, a risk factor for shaken baby syndrome and other forms of child abuse.

Though diapers are clearly a necessity, they are not generally categorized as a basic need, the way that food or housing are. As a result, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps) and the Women Infants and Children Program do not provide diapers. Community-based diaper banks have sprung up around the country to help families. But there are not enough of these organizations to meet the needs of the 6 million American children under the age of 3 who live in poverty.

Diaper banks often get pushback that poor parents should turn to reusable cloth diapers. Some do, and a number of diaper banks provide a cloth option. But there are significant barriers, including start-up costs and access to washing facilities. We are far less concerned about what type of diapers families use than we are about assuring they have an adequate supply.

On average, diapering a child costs about $18 per week. That is a significant expense for some parents, as it represents more than 6 percent of the gross pay of a minimum-wage worker. But as a social programs go, $18 a week to change a life is an incredible bargain.

We take no position on whether that should be a public or private program, or some combination thereof. We simply think that discussions about basic needs should include all basic needs.

On an individual level, when a baby is obviously in distress, people are quick to ask: Does she need a change?

In America today, millions of babies and toddlers are less comfortable, less safe and less likely to prosper in the long-term because they are sitting in wet, soiled diapers.

They need a change.


Goldblum is the Executive Director of National Diaper Bank Network and Dr. Smith is professor at Yale University Child Study Center and School for Public Health



Special to The Enterprise

Investing in America means investing in its small and microbusinesses

February 21, 2013 |

Enclosed is an op-ed on small and microbusiness by Richard Eidlin. Eidlin is the Director of Public Policy and Business Engagement for the American Sustainable Business Council, which represents more than 160,000 businesses nationwide, and more than 300,000 entrepreneurs, executives, managers, and investors… Please let me know if you are interested in using the piece. A photo of the author is available and credit to American Forum is appreciated. Thanks!

Denice Zeck
American Forum

Investing in American Means Investing in its Small and Microbusinesses

By: Richard Eidlin
In his State of the Union speech, President Obama focused on investing to create the, infrastructure, work environment and skills for good jobs and a thriving middle class.

But, do you know how most jobs get created in America? The answer is small and microbusinesses.

As the Kaufman Foundation has noted, the majority of jobs created in the US are done so by companies with 50 or less employees. There are more than 25.5 million microbusinesses – 90 per cent of all businesses – in the US, employing more than 31 million people and generating $2.4 trillion in annual receipts. With many of the largest companies sitting on trillions of dollars in cash, rather than investing it and the jobless rate close to 8%, it’s now time to fully acknowledge the vital role that small and microbusinesses play in stimulating economic activity.

The problem is that small businesses receive much lip service but little action from policymakers.

More and more firms are starting smaller and staying smaller. As the Bureau of Labor statistics reported in March 2012, the average size of new start-ups went from 7.6 employees in the 1990′s to 4.7 employees in 2011. And the share of the self-employed in the labor market is growing exponentially. If one in three microbusinesses hired just one additional employee, the US economy would achieve full employment. In addition, small and microbusinesses are more innovative and more likely to focus on positive social and environmental goals.

In many ways, these businesses represent our best hope for achieving the economy of the future. And yet these entrepreneurs face enormous challenges accessing the capital they need to start and grow their businesses. Those in underserved communities are especially challenged, due to lack of assets, credit scores, and net worth.

As the President noted in his State of the Union address only “a thriving middle class” can ensure long-term growth, and Americans must be given the tools to succeed. We applaud the President’s focus on attracting jobs to the US, calling for smarter investments in manufacturing and increasing the minimum wage, for example. But, the federal government must also play a role in providing start up entrepreneurs with the tools to create their own economic opportunities and build wealth for themselves and their community. Here are a few suggestions of what these tools need to include:

· Revamp the tax code and increase revenue, by eliminating corporate tax havens that allow capital to be offshored. An estimated $100 billion or more in tax revenue is lost to corporate tax havens every year. Our economic progress is undermined when companies are rewarded for financial manipulation rather than innovation and productive investment.

· End wasteful subsidies that benefit the nation’s largest companies. In an era that requires trimming the federal budget, the $5 billion in direct payments for agribusiness are not justifiable, especially when funding and technical assistance for small farmers and ranchers is eliminated. Nor should we provide nearly $4 billion in annual incentives for the oil and gas industry.

· Provide Small Business Access to Capital. There is no shortage of determined, committed, and capable entrepreneurs who want to succeed. However, there are a dearth of opportunities for microbusiness owners to access to fairly-priced capital and resources. Congress must re-instate the ability of the SBA 504 lending program to do refinancing. New Market Tax Credits should be modified to allow for lending to small businesses. And, SBA’s technical assistance, Microloan and the highly successful Program for Investment in Microentrepreneurs need to be fully funded.

· Pass the National Cooperative Development Act. Cooperatives are a critical tool in catalyzing economic development and wealth creation in low to moderate income areas, both rural and urban, throughout the United States. Representative Fattah’s bill would provide much needed loans and seed capital to groups working to form cooperatives.

The American economy is the most dynamic in the world, and a market-based business system must remain the heart of our economy. It spurs innovation and efficiency and allocates resources better than any alternative. However, it must have a set of 21st century tools that directs this innovation onto a path that is sustainable – for our small businesses, our people and our planet.

American Forum 2/19/13



Special to The Enterprise

WEL: Take a hike

September 06, 2013 |

(From June VG)
The UC Davis Stebbins Cold Canyon Reserve, set in a steep canyon of the Northern California Coast Range, showcases the impressive landscapes, human history and plant and animal communities of the region. The reserve has a mix of undisturbed habitats, including grasslands, blue oak woodland, chaparral shrublands, riparian woodland and a seasonal stream.

Immediately upstream of Cold Creek’s outlet to Putah Creek stands the massive wall of Monticello Dam.

The number of visitors to the canyon varies consistently with favorable weather, but the trails are open all year-round, and become well-worn after the winter rains.

Bird-watchers will have much to see at Cold Canyon, and mammals range in size from the ¼-ounce shrew to the large, lumbering black bear. In fact, more than 40 species of mammals call this area home for much or all of their lives.

The reserve is open year-round to hikers, from sunrise to sunset. An entrance donation of $2 per visitor is requested at the informational kiosk near the reserve entrance. Stebbins Cold Canyon is about 15 minutes west of Winters.

* More information:
Spring-fed waterfalls cascading over shadowy caverns, pockets of wetlands with turtles floating undisturbed and the fur of black bears shimmering in the sunlight as they move swiftly along river banks. Recounted by Andrew Fulks, who manages UC Davis’ Putah Creek Riparian Reserve, these adventures actually are close to home.

Fulks has worked to inform, protect and expand opportunities in local nature. And the local outdoorsman shares his journeys from the Blue Ridge trail off Highway 16 to a route leading into Pierce Canyon Falls.

* More information: Detailed descriptions of nearby hikes are listed on the Tuleyome Trails page — aka Yolo Hiker — at



Enterprise staff


September 06, 2013 |

* Editor’s note: This story originally published in February.

It’s been nearly three years since the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame made its cross-country journey, emerging from boxes in New Jersey storage to be showcased in a new Davis home at Third and B streets.

The spoke shrine has raced forward at breakneck speed in an effort to find its niche in the American sporting world.

Anthony Costello of Davis, president of the Hall of Fame board, believes this will be a breakout year for the Hall.

“We’ve always said this was a start-up project,” Costello explained. “We’ve spent the last two years restructuring the board, reworking the building, bringing the collection out of storage, rebuilding the website … doing a lot things that corporate funders expect to see in place.”

The hard work is paying off …

* On May 6, the Hall of Fame presented its inaugural Legends Gran Fondo, featuring three-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond.

* A new elementary school education program is on the horizon.

* A locally based assistant executive director has been hired and oversees new daily hours.

* The Tireside Chat series will continue to bring interesting and internationally known visitors to town for discussions and presentations.

* The November induction ceremony continues to thrive, with national attention growing. This year’s induction is Saturday, Nov. 3.

* At the hub of the Hall of Fame’s increasing presence are powerful additions to its board of directors.

“These new members are all world-class cycling or industry people,” Costello told The Enterprise. “Those people are going to connect us much more to fundraising, too.”

As the shrine’s profile grew, Costello and Pennsylvania-based Executive Director Joe Herget were able to recruit a who’s who of marketing and cycling-savvy personalities to serve on the board.

John Greene, vice president of corporate sales at AEG and the Amgen Tour of California, joins Shawn Hunter of U.S. Pro Cycling Challenge; Bruce Donaghy, vice president of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney; Nancy Hill, customer marketing vice president of Del Monte Foods; Cathy Sutherland of EVP Kensington International; George Mount, a Hall of Fame inductee; and Todd Gogulski, a Davis resident and voice of the Tour de France.

“We wouldn’t have had any of these folks two or three years ago,” Costello said, pointing out that the cycling world wanted to see what direction Davis was taking the Hall of Fame.

Costello believes the new lineup speaks volumes to how the city, UC Davis and those in charge of the facility have propped up and promoted the new Hall.

Gogulski, who already is a frequent visitor at Third and B, is a “perfect” example of the new clout among the incoming board members.

“He’s right at the nexus of what we’re trying to do,” Costello said. “He’s a major player in the industry; he’s connected to every bike racer or rider we’ve ever heard of; he knows the history of the sport — but he also lives in Davis, so from a proximity standpoint, he can be heavily involved with us.”

Then there’s the potential impact in fundraising.

A $250,000 city of Davis redevelopment grant partially has sustained the Hall of Fame. Costello said the facility will reach a “tipping point” later in the year, at which time the organization needs to be self-sustaining.

Trustees like Greene, Hill and Sutherland are expected to bring fiscal clout.

But the Hall of Fame isn’t going to fall back entirely on contributions or grants. Costello and the current board have been pro-active: The annual induction ceremony is a money-maker and the new Legends Gran Fondo is expected to be a big financial shot in the arm.

“One of our goals when we relocated to Davis was to add more annual events that could focus on our inductees and raise money for the organization,” Costello said. “We’re optimistic that we can make this a truly one-of-a-kind event in the country and grow it quickly to be an important annual fundraiser for the Hall of Fame.”

Herget said the Gran Fondo is attracting “many of America’s greatest cyclists from all disciplines of the sport.”

LeMond, a 1996 Hall of Fame inductee, was the marquee participant in a field that included BMXer Stu Thompson, track superstar Nelson Vails, mountain-bike mavens Jacquie Phelan and Ruthie Mathes and triathlete John Howard.

As far-reaching as Costello and Herget believe the Hall of Fame’s impact will be, the pair know its bread and butter is local and regional attention. Enter Herget’s assistant, Kelsey Monahan.

A former San Francisco resident, Monahan was hired in June of 2011 to assist with the massive tasks of inventory, helping with website makeover, scheduling exhibit changes and staffing the Hall of Fame for daily hours. The Hall of Fame is now opened Tuesdays through Fridays from 1 to 5 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

From the new website — at which visitors can explore the ever-expanding treasure chest of the Pierce Miller Collection and the old hall’s recently unearthed bounty — to the frequent Tireside Chats, the Gran Fondo and the constantly changing Hall of Fame displays, Costello and Company think their vision is playing out.

“Just recently we didn’t have a home, the organization needed a lot of work — and we’ve been doing that work to show corporate funders here’s a new direction: all the things you have to have in place,” Costello reflected. “We’ve done that.”

Notes: Costello believes an internship at the Hall can be a game-changer in the job market: “Interns these days are looking at a tough job market and they’re doing everything they can to have (résumé entries) that are unique. We are that kind of opportunity — there are only a few sports hall of fames in the country.” …Visit to journey through cycling history, learn about upcoming Hall events or to sign up for the Legends Gran Fondo. Costello credits current trustees like Brodie Hamilton, Ken Hiatt, John Carbahal, John Hess, John Meyer, Bill Roe and Matt Dulcich — among others — “for doing most of the heavy lifting locally … getting us to this point.”

— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at or 530-747-8047.



Bruce Gallaudet

WEL: Warren Roberts is an Arboretum all star!

September 07, 2013 |

(Originally published June 2012…walk on Sept. 11; check back for website update on next walk dates)

Did you take in a Walk with Warren this year? That’s Warren Roberts, superintendent emeritus of the UC Davis Arboretum. Well, if you didn’t, you are out of luck until September or October. But there are other activities at the Arboretum all summer.

Warren, superintendent for 37-plus years, has been leading a monthly walk in parts of the Arboretum since before he retired. He is a superior storyteller. You ask him about a tree and he has one fascinating story leading into another.

On one walk, in the oak tree grove, he had told a story about a tree insect that produces a sweet substance that can be used to make candy. There is a chestnut-leaved oak, quercus castaneifolia, that grows in the Shields Oak Grove. Native to the Caucasus and Alborz mountains of Iran, it is the fastest growing oak after our valley oak. It has excellent wood and is used for timber.

His candy from oak tree story: In its native habitat, it has a mealy bug that lives on it — sort of like an aphid with a very wooly coat — and that insect, when it hooks onto the part of the tree that carries the fluids up and down … it gets more than it needs and so ejects some of the sugary material. In your own garden you might see aphids and sooty mold, that’s the honey dew as it’s called that’s been attacked by fungi. But it collects in the wooly part of these insects and so you can take your finger and get some (sweetness) by just touching this particular creature.

It was long ago that people learned that this could be made into a candy. So people go out and scrape the mealy bugs off of these twigs and gather them and put them into a double boiler so that the water gets hot, but not to the boiling point. So that gets the sugar into the watery solution plus some of the protein from the insect, and this is strained and cooked down and you make a nougat of this. Usually you think of sugar and egg white … but the egg white part is taken care of by the protein from the insect and the nougat is made … — sort of a soft, chewy candy — and traditionally pistachio nuts are added to it, which come from the same part of the world, and rose water. This is the most delicious thing and it has the name Gaz … (a Farsi word that means) gal or girl, probably related because Iranians speak a language related to English. It’s not an Arabic language at all.

And then that is typically made into little cakes, about 2 1/2 inches across and about less than a half-inch thick and then it is stored in flour and you can ship it around. I had a roommate from Shiraz, which is in the southern part of Iran. And his folks used to send boxes of this stuff. And, oh! It was so delicious. It’s kind of like divinity but with a rose flavor and you can get it here in Davis at the International Food Market in Davis Manor, East Davis. Ask for Gaz. It’s wrapped in little papers. It is made with egg whites so people who are squeamish about … where eggs have been would be squeamish about that too. Nonetheless, it’s delicious and has come from a tree.

That story was from my roommate … He knew the Iranian oak and the oaks we have. Thank goodness we don’t have the mealy bugs (in the Arboretum).

Warren’s story led into one about a scrub oak from the Mediterranean that has another kind of mealy bug, which produces a red dye that was the main dye for the Roman empire, medieval Europe and so on. Gradually, the Spanish adopted that red dye but with the conquest of Mexico, a much better insect was found for red dye — that’s the cochineal on prickly pears. The name cochinilla is depreciative for little pig. When they dry, they look like little black pigs.

Warren is familiar with the products of our own native oaks. On his mom’s side, there were Native Americans. His grandmother used to make muffins and sheet cake from acorns. You gather them, crack open the shell and have to get the brown skin off the cotyledon because that’s very bitter. Then the seeds are ground and leached. You put them in a colander and keep pouring scalding water over them until it no longer tastes bitter. Then his mom and grandmother would toast it in ovens and then grind it again and they would add it to the recipe and use it instead of bran in muffins.

Warren was interested in plants from the time he was 3. His grandparents and great-grandparents were interested in plants. His great-grandmother was a gringa but was a healer. She was born in the Sierra foothills in the 1860s and learned about herbs. She used yerba santa, which was used to treat tuberculosis. The leaves taste sweet so, when you are hiking, you use the shiny leafed species and it keeps your mouth from drying out. She also used creosote bush to make a poultice to treat arthritis.

The Arboretum had been discontinued when Warren came to run it in 1972. He was hired to re-establish it. He was hopeful when he met devoted volunteers Pat Miller and Nancy Crosby, who were painting a building, and those volunteers are still working today, 40 years later.

Year-round, the 3.5-mile Arboretum loop is a delight of surprises, free, 24 hours a day. In the summer, it’s best to visit early in the morning or later in the day. Google UC Davis Arboretum and click on Plan Your Visit for maps, directions, parking information, to find out what’s in bloom, special events, tours, folk jam sessions, birding and the like. I recommend the very accessible west end if you only have time for a short taste.

— Jean Jackman is a Davis resident. Her columns appear monthly. Got a story, question, comment, correction? Contact her at



WEL Box: Toad Tunnel

September 06, 2013 |

The Davis Toad Tunnel, as Stephen Colbert explained during a segment on the Daily Show in 1999, was created “to end the senseless, vehicular homicide of innocent toads.” The tunnel itself is a pipe 6-inches in diameter that runs underneath the Pole Line Road overpass to the Davis Post Office on the other side. A miniature town commonly known as “Toad Hollow” greets traveling amphibians and includes a pub, restaurant and hotel. The town has been commemorated in the children’s book “The Toads of Davis: A Saga of A Small Town” by the tiny town’s designer, Ted Puntillo Sr.

Located: 2020 Fifth Street, at the Davis Post Office
More information:



Enterprise staff

WEL Box: MU Games Area

September 06, 2013 |

Tucked away just below the bookstore on the UC Davis campus, the Memorial Union Games Center gives students and community members alike a fun place to enjoy some downtime. The MU Games Area offers 16 bowling lanes (bowling shoes are available to rent), 10 billiard tables and the largest arcade in a 20-mile radius. The arcade offers pinball along with racing, fighting, shooting, simulator games such as Guitar Hero, classic arcade games and more.

Memorial Union Games Center is inexpensive and can be rented out for birthday parties. They also offer various leagues, host championships and tournaments, and offer youth programs, such as summer bowling camps.

Located: 1 Shields Ave., UCD campus
More information: (530) 752-2580;



Enterprise staff

WEL Box: Sacramento River Train

September 06, 2013 |

Opened in 2005, the Sacramento River Train offers a variety of daytime and evening trips with food and entertainment. There are more than 200 departures a year and each trip lasts 3 or more hours and brings passengers back to their starting point.

The train travels at a leisurely 10 to 20 miles per hour and operates on the 16 mile “Woodland Branch” between Woodland and West Sacramento. The blue and gold painted train boards in both Woodland and West Sacramento and offers three air-conditioned coaches and three open-air cars. Entertainment options include live music, comedians, murder mystery shows, various tastings and more. Special shows include a Christmas Train at the holidays, the Easter Egg Express in the spring and the popular Great Train Robbery offered frequently throughout the year.

Located: 341 Industrial Way, Woodland
More information: 800-866-1690;



Enterprise staff

WEL Box: Flying Farmers

September 06, 2013 |

If the weather’s right, head out to University Airport to spread out a blanket and watch planes soar overhead. Davis is the only UC campus with an airport and boasts over 35,000 take-offs and landings every year. Exhibits are open in the administrative offices weekdays between 8 am and noon, displaying cross sections of two aircraft engines and a beacon light.

The airport was built in 1946 by Harold Hopkins, who also founded the Cal Aggie Flying Farmers the next year. Originally created for aviation enthusiasts, farmers and pilots returning from World War II, this flight club provides aircraft and flight instruction to the general public at a reasonable cost. CAFF has over 350 members, half of who are UCD students, and owns and operates 10 planes.

Located: 1 Airport Road, Davis
More information: 530-752-3067;



Welcome editions — Outline

September 05, 2012 |



Use “like” or “trending” for hidden gems

Ideas for gems:

Monthly flea market X

Square Tomatoes monthly crafts fair (next one is 10/21) X

Rec report info (Parks and Rec offerings)

Treat trail/Dia de los muertos X

Arboretum plant sale X

Movies in the park X

Whymcycles X

Bike repair stations: on campus, around town



Volunteer opportunities X

Clubs X

Census X

Parks X

Activities X

Ceramics conference

Public art: Update, include transmedia sculpture info, Natsoulas info from Debbie

Davis Live music festival — Landon

Flash mob story

DAC: incorporate community into the art…last couple art projects have asked public to get involved (i.e. flash mob, tiles

Murals all over town

Second Friday ArtAbout: Tom’s cheap date story

Neighborhood zones, explained.

Nextdoor story on neighborhood web — Tom (saved in WordPress)

Comedy Central coverage as a hidden gem: Dark Sky, snoring, Toad Tunnel, potholes, fruit trees for homeless,

Tour de Cluck, NY Times (saved in WordPress) X

Water tank story (saved in WordPress) X

Village Feast standalone:

(caption from photo published on Aug. 25) A warm summer afternoon and a cool breeze under the shade of the sycamores in Central Park made a perfect setting for the eighth annual Davis Village Feast, a fundraiser for the Davis Farm to School Connection. The feast, prepared and served by the Buckhorn Restaurant in Winters, was served family style, with all produce, meat and wines from local growers.

Proceeds from the annual event go to the Nutrition Services Department in the Davis Joint Unified School District, supporting efforts to secure local, fresh produce for school lunches, second-grade farm visits, school garden matching grants and recycling programs and environmental education at Davis schools.

AYSO standalone photo (hidden gem?)



Farmers’ market/food trucks on campus — Katie X

Sports round up — Kim X

Sports map — Shawn X

Aggie nicknames — Katie X

to run with Gunrock/Bossy story:, Gunrock page X

College sleep X

US News ranking X

Sierra’s coolest school X

Community book project: Warmth of Other Suns X

Stand alone move-in day X



Sidebar about new resident info, parking, downtown passes, etc.

Bike theft problems…story assigned to Brett (in Sunday’s paper)

Best bike rides (use Sunday best story by me) X

London double-decker story (by Fred and me) X

Bike fixit stations X

Bike loop map X

Roundabouts X

Street names?

wine map X

City of Davis map X

Getting here to there X

Bruce’s car museum story X

Rock talk: Yolo Bypass X

TRENDING: Yolo Bypass bike ride X



Letters welcome

January 04, 2013 |

We welcome your letters

Letters to the editor make a community newspaper lively, but a few rules must be followed. Addresses and phone numbers should be included for verification purposes; they will not be published.

Limit letters to 350 words. Anonymous letters will not be accepted. We reserve the right to edit all letters for brevity or clarity.

Mail letters to The Davis Enterprise, P.O. Box 1470, Davis, CA 95617; bring them to 315 G St.; fax them to 530-756-1668; or email them to



Letters to the Editor

Stroll: Landmark buildings history and architecture

August 28, 2013 |

Sacramento-Woodland Electric Depot:


On July 4, 1912, Woodlanders celebrated the first train to enter the newly constructed Sacramento-Woodland Electric Depot building. Designed in a mixture of California Mission style and contemporary California style by architect/engineer Arthur D. Nicholson, the building features arches, smooth plastered walls. A mission style quatrefoil and rounded roof parapet shapes the arched main entrance. A tall rounded tower with Mexican tile roof extending over this central parapet anchors the Main Street elevation while a shorter Mission style bell tower was placed on the Second Street side. The train track led from the east down Main Street to Second Street where the trains entered the building on the diagonal making it possible to exit at the rear of the building to the freight yards. The tracks also extended down Second Street to Beamer. During World War II portions of those tracks were torn up and given to the scrap metal drive. Traces of the tracks could still be seen as late as the 1970′s.

The passenger terminal was on the Main Street side of the building and Railway Express was on the Second Street side. For 25 cents a Woodlander could ride to Sacramento arriving in 25 minutes. Trains left on the hour and returned on the half-hour. Better transportation by far than available today. Sadly, passenger service was discontinued in mid-1940 due to increasing popularity of the automobile. A Greyhound Bus Station occupied the structure until fires destroyed two-thirds of the building and the building demolished.

A new chapter for the depot opened when Woodland attorney, Tom Stallard bought the property in 1984. Mr. Stallard found the original drawings for the depot, making it possible for the new building to so closely resemble the original that it regularly drew comments from old time Woodlanders who remembered the original. The workmen at the depot were flooded with stories from old timers telling about when they used to go to the soda shop for a refreshing drink, and paper boys who sat in the depot to roll their papers. Woodland physician, W.J. Blevins wrote a grateful note to Mr. Stallard telling him of pleasant memories when he caught the 6:30 a.m. train to attend Sacrament Junior College.

The building now is home to North Valley Bank.

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church:

515-519 SECOND STREET | 1912

The rustic, Gothic-Revival style of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church has graced Second Street in Woodland since 1912. Designed by prominent Berkeley architect, William Hays, the church is a fine example of the medieval tradition of melding woodcarving, stained glass and natural material into an organic and inspired whole. Berkeley contractor P.N. Schmidt built the church. The church is modeled after the original Anglican Church in America built in Smithfield, Virginia in 1632. The exterior is constructed of brick with pilasters between the exterior windows. A rectangular-shaped bell tower positioned at the edge of the Second Street frontage, has an arched main entrance with double doors. Wood carving in the Gothic tradition decorates the rear gable, and the interior exhibits a rich display of wood craftsmanship with intricate ceiling and pews. In 1922 three stained glass windows, created by the world-famous Louis Tiffany Studios were installed above the altar. Another stained glass window, made by Cunnings Studio, was added to the church in 1952, followed by four more in 1966. Finally, in 1974 the remaining six windows were replaced by stained glass from the Exeter Studios. St. Luke’s parish had the Tiffany windows re-leaded in the 1990s.

The Guild Hall, following the Tudor Revival Style, was added to the main part of the church in 1928. Its designer was Woodland resident C. Carlton Pierson, and the builder was Joseph Motroni. In 1929 Woodland contractors Brown and Woodhouse built the Rectory also in the Tudor Revival style with half timbering wood decoration. The latest addition was the Great Hall and Education complex in 1955. The architect was Constable and Constable of Sausalito,

In recognition of the outstanding architecture and the history of the church in the community, St. Luke’s was designated a City of Woodland Historical Landmark in 1993.

United Methodist Church:

212 SECOND ST. | 1852

The Woodland United Methodist church has been serving the community since 1852 when it was a stop on a circuit-riding pastor’s itinerary. A Methodist church building has been located on Second and North Streets since 1883. Before that, in 1864 and 1868, the congregation met in other locations. Construction of the present church was dedicated on Sunday June 21, 1925. The architect of the Mission Revival structure was Rollin S. Tuttle of Oakland who interestingly was also a Methodist pastor in the Oakland area. The contractor was William R. Fait.

A tall bell tower flanks the tiled gable roofs of the sanctuary. The Second Street façade has a tall arched stained glass window with columns above the entrance, which is formed by a tiled arcade with classical columns. There is another arched stained glass window on the North Street façade and a circular stained glass window above the altar, as well as a series of triplicate arched stained glass windows lining both sides of the sanctuary.

In 1954-55 the Education-Fellowship wing south of the sanctuary was built. In 2006 renovation of a small chapel facing the circle on Second Street was completed, featuring a modern stained glass mural created by church members Susan Slover Murphy and Megan Murphy.

St. John’s United Church of Christ:


“For the past 100 years families have looked to St. John’s church for care and comfort. No church has ever been without struggles or problems. The crowd of saints who have gone marching on before us can attest to that. The struggle to build a church, the fire that destroyed the buildings, could not destroy the spirit of the people.” – Reverend William Schroeder, 1991

EARLY HISTORY: Farmers, merchants, clerks, housewives and others among the German immigrants gathered in 1891 to organize what has evolved as Woodland’s St. John’s United Church of Christ. First worshiping in a small church on Third St, they soon began building a sanctuary on the present site. The building constructed of wood in the Gothic Revival style was completed in just four months at a cost of $4,000.00. The first pastor was Reverend J.A. Schilling. German was the language spoken at the services until the 1920’s, when the younger people asked that English be used at some of the Sunday services. Gradually this came to be and in 1948 the last German service was heard.

The church seemed to be at its peak, when on September 8, 1934 disaster stuck. The Yolo brewery across Main Street (where Nugget Market is today) burst into flames; the fire spread destroying the church, parsonage and Sunday school building. Acting with speed, Jacob Witzelberger and a crew of workers began construction of the present church in January 1935, completing it just 90 days later.

William E. Coffman of Sacramento was selected to design the new church in the Tudor Revival Style with checkered pattern of light and dark cinder bricks and a steeply pitched gable. The main entrance to the church shows a Tudor arch featuring a pair of wooden plank doors with stained glass windows, and a side door framed with concrete blocks imitating stone. Inside, pairs of tall stained glass windows line both walls of the sanctuary, honoring families prominent in the life of the church and community.

In 1991, the sanctuary was renovated to widen the chancel area. The choir lofts and organ were moved. The organ pipes were exposed, presenting a grand view for the congregation. A large round stained glass window was placed above the altar. The project was designed by architect Ron Folsom, The contractor was M.C. Blixt.

St. Paul’s Lutheran Church:

625 W. Gibson Road at the corner of Cottonwood and Gibson

From 1905 when the first Lutheran emigrates settled in Woodland, to the founding of the church in 1912, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church now celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2012. This building is the fifth site for the congregation. The church and education wing were designed by the architect Nicholas A. Tomich in a contemporary style and built in 1969. On display are many interesting features. The chapel alter comes from the prior church site and depicts a miniaturized version of the western facade of the 1211 Roman Catholic Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain. The stained glass windows were designed by Cummings Studios of San Rafael, California. The Christus Rex metal sculpture was handmade by artist Norman Grag of Manton, California.

Historic Woodland Train Depot


The Historic Woodland Train Depot, built in 1911 by the Southern Pacific Railroad, was the third of four train depots that were built in Woodland. It is the only original one still remaining and is located at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Sixth Street. This landmark building has witnessed many historical events and has had many famous and not so famous people walk through its waiting room doors to board trains heading north and south. It experienced good times when its outside arcade was full of people waiting to catch a train or meet someone arriving on one. Then it saw years of decline and decay as travel by train to Woodland declined and then stopped altogether. For a time it served as a Greyhound Bus Depot, all the while becoming more run down. Finally all railroad activities were moved out of it in 1989 and it was set for demolition. It was only through a concerted effort by a coalition of historical preservation groups, the City of Woodland, and many individuals and businesses that saved this “last of its kind building” from being destroyed. Now it is nearly restored to its original grandeur and is once again a community gathering place.

The Sacramento Valley Historical Railways purchased the depot in 1991 from the Southern Pacific Railroad and moved it to its present location in 1992. Since then volunteers have spent thousand of hours restoring it for use as a community resource and railroad museum.

Dr. Tan’s Orthodontic Office


Estella and Alpha Mae Harris bought the land this home sits on from their brother in 1912, and later that year built this Craftsman/Bungalow Style home on the corner of Court and Cleveland Streets. The Craftsman Style is typified by the desire to return to nature and basic craftsmanship in design and building. The bungalow style was developed by California architects, Greene and Greene and was the first indigenous domestic architecture in California. The enclosed porch-veranda was a later renovation of the original style.

The history of one of the owners, Stella Harris is a fascinating glimpse of a remarkable woman. She was one of the first teachers in Guinda, California. She taught 40 children 1st through 8th grade for three years before marrying the principal, Guy Gibbs in 1913. She then stopped working, taking time off to bear two children, Guy Jr. in 1914 and Willa in 1917. In 1928 she was elected as the Public Administrator of Yolo County, serving two terms. She was a member of the Woodland Native Daughters of the Golden West. She retired as the Educational Director of the California Western State Life Insurance Company, and was the first woman life insurance agent in the state. Tragically, on December 2, 1968 she was found dead in her home. In 1979 her son and daughter sold the home. In 1984 Chris and Jane Campos bought the property and converted it into a fine furniture store. In 2001, Dr Tan purchased the property, and in 2002, moved his orthodontic practice to this location.

Porter Building

Harry D. Porter, successful Woodland businessman, selected William Henry Weeks from San Francisco to design the three-story office building in 1913. Built in the Renaissance Revival style, the handsome arched entrance leads to the front lobby featuring marble walls and floors. Woodland’s first elevator, still in working order, telephone service to all offices and steam heat were major innovations for that time. The Porter building was a demanding construction project of sophisticated design and modern technology, requiring the skills of an advanced and experienced general contractor Earle L. Younger. The building was occupied in the early days by The Woodland Medical Center, dental offices, post office, attorneys, a civil engineering firm, small private businesses, among them Leithold Drugstore, Red Bud Candy Store and Yolo Savings.

The first floor has been completely renovated and is now occupied by Cambridge College, a training school for medical support staff. The upper two stories are in the process of restoration and will be rented to businesses. The beauty of the workmanship in wood – Golden Oak, Red Douglas fir – marble stairways, opaque patterned glass, and marble bathrooms is being restored to its former glory.

Woodland Fire Museum:

532 Court Street at the corner of First Street in the old firehouse across the street from the Carnegie Library and Rose Garden.

When the City moved its main fire station, the museum opened its doors in the historic old City of Woodland Fire House in August of 2009. The Spanish Colonial Revival style City Hall building was built in phases with the first phase by prominent local contractor Joe Motroni starting in 1932 with the jailhouse and the firehouse, including the tower, originally used for hanging wet fire hoses. The next portion, designed by architect Harry J. Devine and built by Charles F. Unger included the present-day council chambers and finance department was added in 1936. Two additional renovations, in 1961 and 1971 completed the building as it stands today.

The museum will have the fully restored America La France Company1874, Woodland’s first horse drawn steam fire engine in addition to several other early 20th century restored fire trucks, equipment, memorabilia and displays honoring past local firefighters.

Woodland Public Library Rose Garden:

The garden is accessible for free viewing all day. The garden surrounds the Carnegie Library at 250 First Street on Court between First and College Streets. The Library Rose Garden Club rosarians work in the garden throughout the day. They can answer your questions as they demonstrate rose garden summer maintenance.

The John A. Saltsman Garden is on the Woodland Library grounds. The garden was established in 1988 with the labor provided by many volunteer workers and materials provided by local landscape businesses. Over 600 roses provide beauty, fragrance, and rejuvenation to this historical downtown area, including roses grown in early Yolo County gardens. Today, both old and modern roses flourish in the Woodland area and are used in many landscaping formats. The all-volunteer Woodland Library Rose Club maintains the garden.

Woodland Carnegie Library:

250 First Street corner of Court Street.

The historic parts of the Library were constructed in 1905, 1915 and 1929. The original structure of 1905 was funded by a $10,000 grant from industrialist Andrew Carnegie, who funded library buildings throughout California, United States and the United Kingdom. Woodland Public Library is the oldest Carnegie building in California still functioning as a library. Designed by Dodge and Dolliver of San Francisco, and constructed by Woodland contractor William Henry Curson, the Mission Revival style building features many classical elements such as the flight of stairs and columns leading to the front porch, and the interior rotunda and columns which form the entrance into the building.

Kraft Brothers Funeral Directors:

175 Second St.

The building was designed by the prominent Sacramento architectural firm, Dean & Dean, and was constructed in 1927. It was built in 3 sections, the chapel being the first section. It is adobe construction with 18-inch thick walls, and beautiful stained glass windows in the chapel. The arched double doors are solid hardwood made from oak trees from the Capay Valley. The lines running vertically through the doors represent the river of life. Beautiful antiques are throughout the building. The garage was the final section built, and is constructed from solid redwood casket shipping trays. The caretaker’s quarter is located over the main building.

Kraft Brothers is the oldest privately owned company in Yolo County, established by Peter Krellenberg, who emigrated here in 1862 from New York to work on a farm. The Krellenbergs began in the funeral business by making coffins for the local barber/dentist/mortician, located in Dead Cat Alley, and who, after awhile, seeking greater fortune, left Woodland to find his fortune in gold prospecting. Since the Krellenbergs were already making the coffins they were left with no other option than to do the services too. In 1881 Peter Krellenberg brought his only son Emil into the business. Peter died in 1904 and Emil Krellenberg took over the business, bringing his 2 nephews (Julius and Emil Kraft) to join him in the early 1910s. They sold the furniture business in 1933 and renamed their funeral home Kraft Brothers. Funeral Director Paul Wiggins has operated Kraft Bros. since 1998.

Woodland Opera House:

340 Second Street on Heritage Plaza at 2nd & Main Streets

Located at Heritage Plaza, the site of the Stroll headquarters. A State Historical Park and registered California State Landmark, the Woodland Opera House is a rare example of a functioning, small town Victorian performing arts center, complete with a horseshoe balcony. The restoration of the theater exhibits superb craftsmanship with interior antique lighting and Arts and Crafts wallpapers that create an elegant ambiance. The original Woodland Opera House was built in 1885 and designed by prominent San Francisco architect Thomas J. Welse. That building and others nearby were destroyed in the great fire of 1892. This building was rebuilt in 1895-96 and stayed in operation until 1913 and then closed until purchased by the Yolo County Historical Society in 1971 and reopened for performances in 1989. The building is now owned by the State of California and is a State historical park, State Historical Landmark #851.

Makoto Kai Art Deco Building:

443 First Street just south of Bush Street

This building, one of Woodland’s few classic Art Deco buildings was constructed in 1936. This building exhibits the flair and imagination of the distinct Deco architectural style. The stucco building has characteristic horizontal bands and smooth edges, and still retains its original tower and signage. The tower was designed to house the ventilation for cooling equipment for Mulcahay’s, Woodland’s first frozen food locker business that also sold fresh and frozen meats. The building was converted to an upholstery shop in the 1960’s and since 1992 has been Makoto Kai healing arts center for yoga, massage and jujitsu.

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ):

509 College at the corner of College and Lincoln.

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the first Christian Church in Northern California, was founded under an oak tree by Joshua Lawson in 1854 and celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2004.

The current Mission Revival styled sanctuary was built in 1949, with beautiful memorial stained glass depicting people and events in biblical history, created in memory of founding Woodland families. Docents will lead tours to explain the significance of the windows and the history of the church.

The church also maintains the Heritage Oak Room Museum. The docent tours of the museum also tell the story of Hesperian College, founded by the church and opened in 1861 at the hour of Lincoln’s inauguration. It was one of the very first co-ed schools and, in 1934, became part of Chapman University. Historic pictures, artifacts, and antiques including a communion table, communion trays and collection boxes from the 1889 sanctuary are on display. An organ belonging to Minna Cross, Sunday School Teacher, Hesperian College Teacher, and recipient of Woodland’s first bicycle license will be on display, as are pictures of Hesperian College made by Imelda Rooney who was a kindergarten teacher in Woodland many years ago.

Yolo County Historical Museum, also known as Gibson House:

512 Gibson Road, just east of College Street

Situated on 2.5 acres of towering trees, historical plantings, and lawn, this Greek Revival style building is the former home of pioneers William Byas and Mary Gibson. The house, built in phases beginning in 1857, features a front facade of four Doric columns and a Southern Plantation style balcony. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Woodland Nursing and Rehabilitation:

678 Third Street between Cross and Oak Streets

Today known as Woodland Skilled Nursing Facility, when built in 1928 this three-story simplified Classical Revival hospital building represented the third version of a hospital facility located at this site. In 1911 the Woodland Sanitarium was constructed here after having been started in 1905 in a converted house at 110 College Street by nurse Kathleen McConnell. In 1920 the Sanitarium was enlarged to meet the needs of the Woodland Clinic medical group comprised of several physicians. William H. Weeks was the architect for both the 1920 and 1928 projects. The new owners have upgraded this historic building to house a modern facility.

Boy Scout Cabin:

525 Lincoln Ave between College and First St

This rustic redwood cabin has served as a meeting place for the Boy Scouts of America since its construction in 1932. Dr. H.J. “Doc” Camp is credited with being the pioneer of the Boy Scout movement in Woodland. He organized community fundraising drives to develop the cabin. The cabin is owned by a nonprofit trust that is currently raising funds to address needed repairs on the building so it can continue to serve the next generation of Scouts. There are currently four Boy Scout Troops, one Venture Crew Explorer Unit, and two Cub Scout packs using the cabin.

Elks Lodge No. 1299:

500 BUSH STREET | 1926

The Woodland Elks Lodge, No. 1299 designed by architect, William Henry Weeks, is an elegant example of the Mediterranean Revival style. The building has a low-hipped tile roof and a stucco finish. On the front elevation is a projecting first story and arched entry with decorative flashing tiles above. Molded upper arched windows are covered with a tracery reminiscent of Moorish architecture. Lower widows grouped in threes on each side of the arched triple entry are topped by decorative rectangular panels. The front windows also have a pair of engaged molded spiral columns separating them. A circular medallion over the center entry arch contains the Elk symbol executed in molded metal. A one-story annex on the east side (1950) conforms in style with the rest of the building.

The building contractor was J.A. Bryand of San Francisco. Joseph Motroni, Woodland resident and master mason and builder, was in charge of brick and concrete work. The interior features a large foyer, high ceilings, stained glass windows, elegant woodwork, a grand staircase, several comfortable rooms for dining and visiting, two offices, a huge kitchen plus the impressive Lodge Room on the second floor, the largest room in the building.

The Woodland Elks Lodge was founded in 1913 when 47 charter members were installed in the Odd Fellows Hall on Main Street. The Exalted Ruler was Ross C. Wilson. The chair of the building committee was P.T. Laugenour. By the end of that year rooms were secured on the second floor of the Bank of Woodland/Yolo Savings Bank, providing ample space for club rooms. Lodge sessions were held in the Native son’s Hall until their new building was completed in 1926.

Dingle Elementary School

625 ELM STREET | 1926

Since 1889 there has been a grammar school at the site where C.E. Dingle Elementary is located today. While the names of the school and the buildings have changed over the years the site has long played a significant role in the history of education in Woodland. Charles E. Dingle, principal for many years of Woodland Grammar School (today’s Dingle School) had the life motto of “What a teacher is, his pupils will be.” After his retirement in 1924, it was decided in 1926 to honor his devotion to education by changing the name of the school to C.E. Dingle Elementary School. His legacy is honored today through the teacher’s commitment to the education of their students.



Special to The Enterprise

A successful home renovation requires team work

August 20, 2013 |

David D. asks that we please save this for the fall home improvement issue — The author is one of David’s clients.

By Nancy Morrow
Special to The Enterprise

You are finally ready to tackle that kitchen or bathroom renovation or remodel. But where do you begin? Some homeowners start by calling in a contractor, based on recommendations from friends and family or by looking on-line at a resource like Angie’s List. Others might start trying to put together materials that they like by visiting retail showrooms and big box stores. Still others may search the internet, looking for information on design and products. A few brave souls may even plan to tackle the project themselves. While all of these approaches do work for some projects, you may more satisfied with the process and the product if you approach the project systematically and with the help of a team of experts. Most remodeling novices believe that the more people that they have involved in their project, the more it will cost, when in fact, relying on professional help can actually save you money.
Decide on a budget range. You need to begin by looking at your goals and your budget. Sometimes they just don’t match up. You will waste a lot of your own time (and that of the professionals from whom you see help) if you put together a project that you ultimately can’t afford or that means over-investing in your current home. You can find out more about the value of your home compared to others in the neighborhood by looking at or talking to a local realtor. Homeowners are sometimes reluctant to “reveal” their budget for fear that the designer or contractor will just want to “spend it all.” While it is better to be open about your budget, you might want to ask a question like, “What is the average or typical price of a kitchen remodel in my neighborhood?” You will also want to consider the impact of your remodel on the rest of your home. For some homeowners this becomes a “slippery slope.” One project makes the rest of the house look dated and shabby, which leads to another project, and maybe another. Consider also how you want to fund the project: for example, do you want to use money you have saved, or apply for a home equity loan, or combine some different sources of funding? If you are financing the project, keep in mind that the application process may take some time, which will affect your start date.
Come up with an appropriate design. Once you know how much you can spend on the project, you will want to explore the possibilities for reconfiguring your space and finding new materials. While you might be able to figure this out on your own or with the help of your contractor, you will probably have a better outcome if you work first with an architect or designer who has access to current information on building codes and the availability of specific materials. Unless you are adding on to your current residence or changing roof lines, where an architect’s skills would be valuable, you may be better off working with an interior designer who has specific training in kitchen and bath design. (The National Kitchen and Bath Association at, can give you the names of certified designers). Even if you are simply replacing what’s in your current kitchen or bath with something new, a designer can provide the drawings you will need for building permits, help you to interview prospective contractors, and guide you in selecting the best materials for your project.
Choose quality materials for durability and aesthetics. In your kitchen or bathroom, you will be selecting materials – appliances, cabinets, flooring, countertops, tile, plumbing and lighting fixtures – that should last for decades. Price is, unfortunately, a pretty good indicator of quality. While a remodeling professional can judge the quality of a product based on their knowledge and experience, the typical homeowner usually can’t distinguish quality materials from inferior (and usually less expensive) products. There is a saying in the design business: The sorrow that comes from getting poor quality lingers long after any pleasure that comes from getting a low price. Here’s something else to consider: that $2/SF tile that you found at the outlet or big box store will cost you exactly the same to install as the higher-quality $6/SF tile. Working with a designer can also help you to avoid materials that look inexpensive or dated and to manage your budget effectively.
Not everything you see on the internet is available where you live. Many homeowners are turning to resources like for inspiration. But your architect, designer, material supplier, and contractor will need to work together to make sure that your inspiration can be replicated where you live. Not all materials are available in all parts of the country, and some the products that you see in magazines or on-line may already be discontinued. Trends have been moving quickly in design and product manufacturing, and you want to make sure that you don’t fall in love with a material that can’t be shipped to your area, or that may even have already been discontinued. The advantage of sourcing your materials locally, either from regional manufacturers or from products that are distributed locally, is that you will know who to call if there is an issue or problem. Purchasing on the internet, while convenient, can pose a number of problems, for example, many manufacturers do not honor warranties for their products if purchased online. Even if warranties are valid, it might be difficult to find someone to help you if the product is defective in any way.
Your contractor needs to know what materials you are using in order to give you an accurate bid for installing them. Experienced contractors bid on a job based on the materials that might be “typical” for a similar job. If you decide, however, to use a complicated glass tile mosaic instead of the 6X6 ceramic tile that the contractor usually uses, not only will your material costs be higher than expected, but the contractor might add additional labor costs for that material. Selecting your materials and making sure that they available before you begin your project will help you to avoid these problems. Your designer or material supplier should work closely with your contractor to insure that the chosen materials are available when they are needed in the construction schedule. Inevitably, sourcing or inventory problems may arise, but you want to make sure that your construction team can resolve them as quickly as possible.
Make sure that you choose professionals who communicate well with you, but also with each other. When problems arise during the construction process, there can be unproductive figure-pointing. The contractor might blame the designer or the material supplier, or the designer might blame the contractor. The contractor might pass the blame on to his own installer. In the end, assigning blame is far less important than simply resolving the problem. When you are asking former clients about a designer or contractor, be sure to ask about how quickly and effectively problems were solved. During the interview process pay close attention to how professionals interact with each other.
With thoughtful planning and help from professionals, you can end up with a kitchen or bath that you can be proud of.

— Nancy Morrow is the owner of Casa Verde Designs, a full-service design and materials showroom in Davis since 2007. The business has helped many Davis residents to remodel their kitchens and baths. The showroom provides a variety of materials, all geared toward the consumer seeking sustainable products.



Special to The Enterprise

Aggie Football National readies for Gould’s first season

August 04, 2013 |

The Ron Gould Era of UC Davis football begins in earnest today when the former Cal associate head coach is expected to greet 95 Aggies a day before fall camp opens Monday morning.

“I’m very excited, but I think the biggest thing is to stay focused,” Gould told The Enterprise.

Gould, who in 16 seasons as a Golden Bear mentor oversaw one of the nation’s most prolific ground games, was hired last December as the Aggies’ XX head coach in the school’s 95-season gridiron history.

The season-opener is Aug. 31 at South Dakota.

Gould knows of the school’s storied football past, which at one point saw UCD teams post 37 consecutive winning seasons under coaches Jim Sochor, Bob Foster and Bob Biggs.

“I don’t anticipate much change in coaching philosophy,” Gould explains. “Just get better.”

Davis has posted back-to-back 4-7 records, after which Biggs retired last year with a 144-85-1 mark during his 20 campaigns.

“Bob remains a great asset … he’s been so generous with his time,” Gould continues. “To follow three legendary coaches like those – including Sochor, the godfather of Aggie Nation – is an honor.”

But they were then. Gould is now…

After a winter conditioning program and spirited spring practice in which Gould and his staff got a good look at veterans, the new Aggie regime now greets 15 high school recruits and several community college transfers among the almost-100 players reporting today.


And while the players are sky high with anticipation, even Gould admits his first head-coaching gig has a special feel – anticipation that has him running 24-7 football mode.

“(I’ve awakened) several times thinking of different plays, thinking about the team and practice and those things,” the 47-year-old Oregon graduate says. “We still have to get better. But (as head coach) now I have more guys that I’m giving (the) message to.”

And that message?

“Focus on the day-to-day (responsibility). Don’t focus on the outcome, just focus on getting better,” adds Gould, who preaches trust and has the word posted throughout the football operations center, his office and in each playbook.

With 45 letter-winners (which includes 18 starters) back from 2012, Gould has a solid nucleus from which to work…

Despite last year’s losing record, a quick look at the UCD bottom line suggests a competitive team that just didn’t hold it together in the second half.

The Aggies were outscored by only 20 points. They had a 407-yard total offense deficit, but carved out a plus-seven turnover ratio.

Davis had a 183-139 cumulative halftime advantage a year ago, but wore down after intermission – being out-pointed 183-119. Losses included 12-8 to South Dakota State, 28-20 at Cal Poly, 48-41 versus Montana State and 31-28 in Eastern Washington.

The numbers – and an accomplished returning cast of characters – suggest these Aggies but are handful of tweaks away from revisiting their salad days.

Three-year starting quarterback Randy Wright returns. The Santa Rosa native hit on 57 percent of his passes for 2,410 yards and 13 scores. For his career, Wright has 7,092 career yards and 44 touchdowns.

With tight end Taylor Sloat and wideout Corey Galindo chock-a-block with preseason honors and familiar with Wright’s ways, the aerial games should be a given strong spot.

On the ground, Davis averaged 136 yards a game – but those numbers are deceiving because 508 of those came in just two games (wins over Azusa Pacific and Idaho State).

But with tailback Colton Silveria (590 yards) and preseason All-Big Sky Conference fullback Dalton Turay (seven touchdowns) returning – mix in Gould’s propensity with a running game – rushing should see an up-tick and consistency.

A more dangerous ground game, in turn, will give Wright a better chance to throw.

And as Aggie fans know, Gould has promised a balanced offense.

How that will materialize is a mystery since the new coach – like most college coaches – plays it close to the vest when talking with media in the preseason.

However, come Aug. 31 in that opener with South Dakota, expect the cat, er, Aggie to be out of the bag as a new era of UC Davis is off and running.

Notes: Initial practices at Aggie Stadium will run from 9:15 to 11:20 a.m. Weekend practice will be an hour later with the first two-a-days commencing Aug. 12. Regular-season drills (8:30-10:20 a.m.) begin the week of the first game. …This is the second season for UC Davis in the Big Sky Conference. League games are Idaho State (Sept. 28), at Southern Utah (Oct. 5), Montana (homecoming Oct. 12), at Northern Colorado (Oct. 19), at Montana State (Oct. 26), Cal Poly (Nov. 2 on Family/Parent Weekend), North Dakota (Nov. 16) and at Sacramento State (60th Causeway Classic on Nov. 23). Davis’ first home game is Sept. 14 versus Northern Arizona. The Aggies will travel to Nevada on Sept. 7. …Administrative meetings with coaches are scheduled for players throughout today.



Bruce Gallaudet

Health and Beauty: Body clock: Best times to eat, sleep, exercise, whatever

August 2, 2013 |

By Allie Shah
Minneapolis Star Tribune

When it comes to healthy living, there’s no shortage of competing views on how to fight flab, run faster, sleep sounder and feel happier.

But what if when you exercise — and eat and sleep — is just as important as how?

Mounting evidence suggests that our bodies perform differently at different times of the day. Like all living things, we have an internal clock that affects our hormonal responses, body temperature, heart rate and sleep cycles. It’s determined by something called circadian rhythms, which follow the 24-hour pattern of Earth’s rotation.

Does this sound a bit mystical? Maybe. But health experts say that knowing your body’s clock can help you synchronize your daily activities for optimal health. Mastering these internal rhythms can pay dividends — from controlling your weight to sleeping better to improving your overall mood.

“Whether you are a yeast in beer or a fly or a dog or a fish, we all have this innate 24-hour circadian rhythm,” said Dr. Michael Howell, a neurologist at the University of Minnesota. “What your body is doing at 8 o’clock in the morning is different than what your body is doing at 10 o’clock in the morning. Your gut responds differently to food at different times of the day, and we have different capacities for exercise at different times of the day.”

What happens if you disrupt these natural rhythms? You might be setting yourself up for a host of health problems.

For many people, a good night’s sleep is the hallmark of optimal health.

There’s no perfect time to wake up, Howell said, because sleep cycles vary dramatically from person to person. But finding the time when you naturally wake up is crucial to getting good rest. Sleep problems more often stem from mistimed sleep than from anything else.

Nighttime, Howell said, isn’t the only time our bodies crave sleep. Our energy level and body temperature take a natural dip in the middle of our waking day, making us tired. Before industrialization, most people did not work a conventional eight to nine hours in a row without pausing for rest, he said.

Although most modern work schedules do not make it possible to accommodate a midafternoon power nap, the most refreshing sleep comes from having slept six hours at night and then napping for up to two hours in the afternoon, Howell said.

Nap times vary, depending on when you get up in the morning. “It’s usually six hours after your normal wake-up time,” he explained, “so if you wake up at 7 a.m., then your natural time to fall asleep is at 1 in the afternoon.”

Martha Mattheis, a lawyer from Carver County, Minn., is an avid long-distance runner and has completed 17 marathons. She enjoys running in the morning, but has tried running at different times of the day.

She’s made a discovery: “I think I run faster in the afternoon,” she said, “because I am warmed up and I’ve had quite a load of caffeine on board.”

Some physiologists back up the idea that afternoons are the perfect time to tackle high-intensity exercise.

“That’s because you have the day to warm up as opposed to waking up with stiff joints, and blood flow (in the morning) might not be quite what it is at the end of the day,” said Paul Mellick, an assistant professor in the Department of Health and Human Performance at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn.

Yet some trainers and fitness coaches say people should just keep it simple: The best time to exercise is whenever works best for you. “As a physiologist, I don’t care when you do it. Just do it,” said Mark Blegen, chair of the Exercise and Nutrition Sciences department at St. Catherine University, based in the Twin Cities.

Blegen prefers to exercise in the morning.

When it comes to eating, experts differ on timing.

“From a scientific standpoint, there have been studies that say eating smaller meals, more frequently, can be beneficial. So, eating every two hours,” said Katherine Zeratsky, a registered dietitian with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. “There’s equivalent research that says eating three meals is adequate.”

But they’re unanimous on the importance of breakfast. It keeps your mind sharp and can prevent overeating later. Some say you should eat within an hour of waking up, while others say within two hours is ideal.

So when should you stop eating for the day? Many diets ban foods after 7 p.m. as a way to discourage snacking on unhealthy foods. Sleep experts say that eating late at night, especially anything with caffeine, will raise your heart rate and prevent you from falling asleep on time. But some nutritionists see little harm in eating past 7 p.m., and one even recommends having a healthy snack an hour before sleeping.

“This is where we might differ from a lot of people,” said Darlene Kvist, founder of Nutritional Weight and Wellness in the Twin Cities. “We believe that an hour before you go to bed, you need to have a snack with a little fat and a little bit of carbohydrates. The fat helps to stabilize blood sugars through the night so (people) sleep more soundly and deeper and they’re more rested in the morning.”

Early risers stand to benefit from several wellness pursuits timed perfectly for the morning hours.

Erik Storlie teaches meditation at the University of Minnesota’s Center for Spirituality and Healing, where his students often ask: “When should I meditate?” He tells them that they must find their own optimum time, but generally, one of the best times is when you wake up — when the world is quiet. He also suggested pausing in the middle of the day, and just before you lay your head on the pillow at night.

The body’s inner clock can even help you perform better in other, more surprising, wellness areas.

Levels of oxytocin, also called the “love hormone,” are highest in the morning hours. Men’s testosterone levels also peak early in the day.

When it comes to having great sex, it seems, everyone should be a morning person.



Scripps Howard News Service

Health and Beauty: Changing your lifting grip can keep workouts fresh

August 2, 2013 |

By Lya Wodraska

Salt Lake Tribune

Changing your exercise routine is a great way to keep workouts fresh and challenge the body.

Not allowing yourself to get comfortable helps you find “new” muscles to work or provides new mental and balance challenges.

One change that’s easy to make — but often overlooked — is the grip you use when lifting.

By simply changing the way you hold weights or bars, you can change your workout. Another option is to substitute cable handles for those with different shapes or for ropes.

By doing this one simple change, you can tweak muscles and get more definition since you are challenging the body on a neuromuscular level.

In 1992, a research project in the International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics studied how three different bar diameters affected neuromuscular strength. Researchers compared three different handles and the reactions it caused in weightlifters. They tracked the information using an EMG — short for “electromyography” — machine, which records the electrical activity produced by skeletal muscles.

Researchers found that the smallest handle elicited the greatest maximal voluntary contraction and the lowest neuromuscular activation on the EMG machine. The largest handle caused the greatest neuromuscular response and the smallest maximal voluntary contraction. Further studies support the idea that bigger bars cause larger reactions.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should ditch all exercises for an Olympic bar. In everyday life, the things we grasp vary in size, so your workout should reflect that.

If you want to experiment with new grips and positioning, try the one-armed row. It’s one of my favorite exercises because it is simple to perform and awesome for the back. Here’s how to do it:

Set up: Add weight to one end of a standard Olympic bar. If necessary, secure the other end by placing it in a corner or against a wall to keep it from sliding.

Stance: Stand to one side of the bar. Then bend over and grasp the handle just above the weight. Use a kind of “baseball stance,” with legs slightly bent.

Move: Row the bar up toward your chest. Keep the back neutral. Don’t let it round.

Variations: Add more variety by making some of the rows a slow, moderate pace and others fast and explosive.

This exercise not only gives you a new way to row and develop back muscles, it’s also is practical because it mimics the motion we use when we pick things up off the ground.

— Contact Lya Wodraska at Twitter: Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service,



Scripps Howard News Service

Health and Beauty: Study: Hula has heart health, spiritual benefits

August 2, 2013 |

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii research presented to a convention of the American Psychological Association claims hula is good for the heart and soul.

According to research by the University of Hawaii medical school and the Queen’s Medical Center, learning hula dancing can lower blood pressure and help rehabilitate patients after heart attacks or cardiac surgery.

The research attempted to evaluate how hula can help improve health among Native Hawaiians, whose death rate from heart disease is roughly twice that of the general population in the state, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Friday ( ).

Mele Look, an investigator on the studies, said there’s also evidence hula has emotional and spiritual benefits.

“Hula has never been used before as an intervention in a scientific research study,” Look said. “We wanted to understand it both from the cultural side as well as from the Western scientific side.”

One study examined 45 people diagnosed with hypertension. Half of them took hula classes twice a week for 12 weeks, including heart health education. That group saw their blood pressure drop by 20 points on average. The control group saw a nine-point drop. Most of the participants with Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander.

Another study offered hula as rehabilitation for patients after cardiac surgery or heart attacks. The trial showed hula improved physical functioning and boosted social support, Look said.

“People in the group often felt no one else really understood what they went through or how they were feeling, how vulnerable, facing their mortality,” she said. “In the environment of a hula class, they felt supported, and it happened very fast and it lasted.”

An earlier stage of the research was accepted for publication in the International Journal of Sports Medicine. Researchers found low-intensity hula was slightly more energetic than fast ballroom dancing and high-intensity hula took more energy than a pickup game of basketball.



The Associated Press

American education and the IQ trap

August 01, 2013 |

By Scott Barry Kaufman
July 20, 2013, 5:00 a.m.
What does it mean to be gifted in the United States?

A national survey in 2011 found that the predominant method of assessment, by far, is the administration of IQ tests and standardized academic tests. At least 34 states, including California, consider such tests an indication of giftedness; they are mandated by at least 16 states. In contrast, only nine states require the use of tests that measure “creativity” and even fewer require the assessment of leadership, motivation or a talent for the performing arts. Although no state permits a single IQ score to determine gifted eligibility, 18 states set strict cutoff scores, and testing is typically a one-shot deal: You’re either gifted or you’re not, for the rest of your life.

On every count, these policies profoundly limit the intellectual and innovative possibilities of all students.

I can attest to just how limiting the process is. As a child, I was diagnosed with an auditory disorder that made it difficult for me to process speech in real time. I repeated third grade. Then, after an anxiety-ridden IQ testing session in fourth grade, I was sent to a school for students with learning disabilities. By the time I reentered public school in sixth grade, the label “special ed” was hard to overcome, despite my yearning for more intellectual challenges. If it weren’t for a couple of teachers (thank you Mrs. Jeuell and Mrs. Acton!) who considered the kid rather than the system’s preconceptions, I might never have earned a doctorate at Yale.

How does the system go wrong? For one, educators frequently treat IQ scores as if all students with the same score have the same educational needs. In reality, everyone with the same score got there with a different pattern of cognitive strengths and weaknesses. When properly interpreted, a comprehensive test battery can offer insights into working memory, abstract reasoning, visual-spatial ability, mathematical reasoning, reading comprehension, writing ability, vocabulary, auditory processing and processing speed. Research suggests that identifying these specific cognitive skills, not a single global IQ score, has the greatest value for determining who will benefit from various educational programs.

But even done well, standardized testing has limits. Many other factors contribute to learning and real-world success, from active learning strategies to intrinsic motivation, grit, self-regulation and outside support and encouragement.

Consider the Posse Foundation, a national scholarship program that recruits high school seniors with extraordinary potential that standardized testing has missed and helps them succeed in college and beyond. Nominated students, mostly from disadvantaged backgrounds, undergo a three-month “dynamic evaluation” that involves group and individual interviews to assess leadership, communication, problem-solving and collaboration skills. The aim is to truly get to know the person, not just his or her numbers, to determine who can benefit from the program.

Although the average SAT score of Posse alumni is much lower (1,053 out of 1,600) than the average at the colleges and universities they attend, their academic performance matches that of the general student body at those institutions, many of which are prestigious, such as Cornell University and UC Berkeley. Among Posse graduates are a college dean, a cardiologist, a film director and a lieutenant in the Army. Many have earned graduate scholarships and doctorates. Posse’s results demonstrate that people can achieve similar academic and life outcomes by drawing on different mixes of personal characteristics.

The testing system also goes wrong when educators assume that IQ scores and intelligence are immutable. Educational psychologist Kevin McGrew compared test results and reported that a given student’s IQ could be expected to vary from 16 to 26 points depending on which IQ test he took. In one large-scale analysis based on 6,321 students, researchers found that only 35% to 40% of the students who met the gifted standard in third grade still met it by eighth grade. Undoubtedly, the reverse was also true.

IQ test score fluctuations may be due to test administrators making a scoring error or to students who zone out. But researchers also credit the brain’s neuroplasticity and the importance of experience on its development. Reasoning training, for example, can strengthen connectivity in the “executive attention network,” which is crucial to concentration, multitasking and the ability to integrate diverse ideas.

In other words, “human potential” is a moving target. A student’s performance at any given moment on standardized assessments ought to be seen as an indication of readiness for engagement in a particular area, not a measure of static ability.

Is there a role for IQ testing in the education system? Yes, if it stands for intelligent testing, a technique pioneered by psychologist Alan S. Kaufman, not intelligence testing. Unearthing a child’s fixed, innate level of giftedness should not be the goal of education. The tests and labels should never be used to limit a child’s access to accelerated resources. Instead, testing is an opportunity to learn about the child’s strengths and weaknesses, with the goal of tailoring a program to his or her needs.

Strict cutoff scores must be banished and global IQ scores deemphasized. The test scores have to be viewed in context: How do students behave during testing? What kind of learning opportunities and environment are they exposed to? What’s their level of grit,leadership, creativity and talent for things other than academics? Perhaps most important, assessments have to be revisable.

It may be time for a paradigm shift: Perhaps we should stop describing people as gifted or ungifted and start describing a wide range of personal characteristics and environmental factors as potential gifts — and promote an educational culture that develops them.

Project Bright Idea offers an example of how this might work. It was founded on the assumption that all children benefit from gifted curriculum. The latest phase focused on K-2, with students whose economic and educational backgrounds don’t usually land them in accelerated programs. It targeted a wide range of “gifted intelligent behaviors” including thinking flexibly, being self-reflective, creating, imagining and innovating, taking responsible risks, listening with understanding and empathy, and remaining open to continuous learning.

Virtually none of the students involved had been nominated for gifted and talented programs. But by second grade, about 1 in 4 was identified as gifted. And even those who weren’t showed substantial improvements in the gifted behaviors that were taught. On top of that, one principal found that nearly every Bright Idea student scored 50% to 100% higher than students in the regular classrooms on every academic assessment given.

When I was in ninth grade, Mrs. Jeuell asked me a simple question: “What are you still doing in special ed?” It galvanized me. I talked my way into regular and then advanced classes, but I hit another roadblock. The school psychologist, my fourth-grade IQ test in hand, blocked my access to the gifted program. Mrs. Acton believed in me and let me unofficially join her “Challenge” class, allowing me to prove myself.

What happens when Mrs. Jeuells or Mrs. Actons don’t materialize? How many children are trapped even now by the low expectations contained in a misunderstood and misused test score?

Scott Barry Kaufman is an adjunct assistant professor of psychology at New York University and the author of “Ungifted: Intelligence Redefined.”

Copyright © 2013, Los Angeles Times



Special to The Enterprise

July 24, 2013 |

One of regenerative medicine’s greatest goals is to develop new treatments for stroke. So far, stem cell research for the disease has focused on developing therapeutic neurons — the primary movers of electrical impulses in the brain — to repair tissue damaged when oxygen to the brain is limited by a blood clot or break in a vessel. New UC Davis research, however, shows that other cells may be better suited for the task.

Published today in the journal Nature Communications, the large, collaborative study found that astrocytes — neural cells that transport key nutrients and form the blood-brain barrier — can protect brain tissue and reduce disability due to stroke and other ischemic brain disorders.

“Astrocytes are often considered just ‘housekeeping’ cells because of their supportive roles to neurons, but they’re actually much more sophisticated,” said Wenbin Deng, associate professor of biochemistry and molecular medicine at UC Davis and senior author of the study. “They are critical to several brain functions and are believed to protect neurons from injury and death. They are not excitable cells like neurons and are easier to harness. We wanted to explore their potential in treating neurological disorders, beginning with stroke.”

Deng added that the therapeutic potential of astrocytes has not been investigated in this context, since making them at the purity levels necessary for stem cell therapies is challenging. In addition, the specific types of astrocytes linked with protecting and repairing brain injuries were not well understood.

The team began by using a transcription factor (a protein that turns on genes) known as Olig2 to differentiate human embryonic stem cells into astrocytes. This approach generated a previously undiscovered type of astrocyte called Olig2PC-Astros. More importantly, it produced those astrocytes at almost 100 percent purity.

The researchers then compared the effects of Olig2PC-Astros, another type of astrocyte called NPC-Astros and no treatment whatsoever on three groups of rats with ischemic brain injuries. The rats transplanted with Olig2PC-Astros experienced superior neuroprotection together with higher levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein associated with nerve growth and survival. The rats transplanted with NPC-Astros or that received no treatment showed much higher levels of neuronal loss.

To determine whether the astrocytes impacted behavior, the researchers used a water maze to measure the rats’ learning and memory. In the maze, the rats were required to use memory rather than vision to reach a destination. When tested 14 days after transplantation, the rats receiving Olig2PC-Astros navigated the maze in significantly less time than the rats that received NPC-Astros or no treatment.

The investigators used cell culture experiments to determine whether the astrocytes could protect neurons from oxidative stress, which plays a significant role in brain injury following stroke. They exposed neurons co-cultured with both types of astrocytes to hydrogen peroxide to replicate oxidative stress. They found that, while both types of astrocytes provided protection, the Olig2PC-Astros had greater antioxidant effects. Further investigation showed that the Olig2PC-Astros had higher levels of the protein Nrf2, which increased antioxidant activity in the mouse neurons.

“We were surprised and delighted to find that the Olig2PC-Astros protected neurons from oxidative stress in addition to rebuilding the neural circuits that improved learning and memory,” said Deng.
The investigators also investigated the genetic qualities of the newly identified astrocytes. Global microarray studies showed they were genetically similar to the standard NPC-Astros. The Olig2PC-Astros, however, expressed more genes (such as BDNF and vasoactive endothelial growth factor, or VEGF) associated with neuroprotection. Many of these genes help regulate the formation and function of synapses, which carry signals between neurons.

Additional experiments showed that both the Olig2PC-Astros and NPC-Astros accelerated synapse development in mouse neurons. The Olig2PC-Astros, however, had significantly greater protective effects over the NPC-Astros.

In addition to being therapeutically helpful, the Olig2PC-Astros showed no tumor formation, remained in brain areas where they were transplanted and did not differentiate into other cell types, such as neurons.

“Dr. Deng’s team has shown that this new method for deriving astrocytes from embryonic stem cells creates a cell population that is more pure and functionally superior to the standard method for astrocyte derivation,” said Jan Nolta, director of the UC Davis Institute for Regenerative Cures. “The functional improvement seen in the brain injury models is impressive, as are the higher levels of BDNF. I will be excited to see this work extended to other brain disease models such as Huntington’s disease and others, where it is known that BDNF has a positive effect.”
Deng added that the results could lead to stem cell treatments for many neurodegenerative diseases.

“By creating a highly purified population of astrocytes and showing both their therapeutic benefits and safety, we open up the possibility of using these cells to restore brain function for conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, traumatic brain disorder, cerebral palsy and spinal cord injury,” said Deng.

Peng Jiang of UC Davis and Shriners Hospitals for Children was the study lead author. Deng and Jiang’s co-authors were Chen Chen, Olga Chechneva, Seung-Hyuk Chung and David Pleasure of UC Davis and Shriners Hospitals for Children; Quanguang Zhang and Ruimin Wang of the Medical College of Georgia; Mahendra Rao of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Center for Regenerative Medicine; and Ying Liu of the University of Texas Health Science Center.



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.

Universities’ corporate takeover

June 12, 2013 |

Dear Editor:
Please consider this analysis and commentary by an emeritus educator who has written about the corporatization of the American universities, Dr. Lawrence Wittner. This New York statewide case has US nationwide implications. Kindly let me know if you choose to use it.
thank you,
Tom H. Hastings

Corporate Welfare or Education? America’s Public University System

By Lawrence S. Wittner

Should a public university be transformed into a corporate welfare project? That’s the key question surrounding “Tax-Free NY,” a new plan zealously promoted by New York State’s Democratic Governor, Andrew Cuomo, with nation-wide implications.

Under the provisions of his Tax-Free NY scheme, most of the 64 campuses of the State University of New York (SUNY), some private colleges, and zones adjacent to SUNY campuses would be thrown open to private businesses that would be exempted from state taxes on sales, property, the income of their owners, and the income of their employees for a period of 10 years. According to the governor, this creation of tax-free havens for private, profit-making companies is designed to create economic development and jobs, especially in upstate New York.

Joined by businessmen, politicians, and top SUNY administrators, Cuomo has embarked on a full court press for his plan. Tax-Free NY, he announced, was “a game-changing initiative that will transform SUNY campuses and university communities across the state.” Conceding that these tax-free zones wouldn’t work without a dramatic “culture shift” in the SUNY system, Cuomo argued that faculty would have to “get interested and participate in entrepreneurial activities.” As he declared in mid-May, the situation was “delicate, because academics are academics. . . . But you can be a great academic and you can be entrepreneurial, and I would argue you’d be a better academic if you were actually entrepreneurial.”

In fact, the commercialization of American college and university life has been advancing steadily in recent years. Thousands of U.S. students are paid by businesses to market products on their campuses, large numbers of university presidents serve on one or more corporate boards, administrators sport new titles such as Kmart Chair of Marketing and BankAmerica Dean, and for-profit universities now dot the American landscape. Indeed, some universities run their own industrial parks, venture capital funds, and joint business-university research centers.

Even so, Tax-Free NY appears to be an important milestone in the corporatization of higher education, for SUNY is the nation’s largest public university system. Only a few years ago, New York State law prohibited businesses from operating on SUNY campuses. But that barrier has been swept away, and SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher is now a leading cheerleader for Tax-Free NY.

SUNY’s faculty and staff, on the other hand, have a greater stake in preserving the university’s traditional role of education and the advancement of knowledge. United University Professions (UUP), the union that represents 35,000 faculty and other professional staff on SUNY campuses, has been disturbed for years by the state government’s abandonment of its legal commitment to fund public higher education. Over a four-year period, SUNY lost nearly $700 million in state support through budget cuts, and state funding has remained flat over the past year. Today, nearly 75 percent of the university’s operating budget comes from ever-rising tuition and fees. A decade ago, the state covered 75 percent of SUNY’s budget.

Naturally, then, UUP has promised to fight against this latest assault on the university. Rejecting Tax-Free NY, it argues that any available space on SUNY’s campuses should be dedicated to improving education through smaller class size and improved student services, that there are no assurances that business entities would support the academic mission of campuses, and that the tax-cutting plan would diminish tax revenues that could be used for public education.

Also, there is considerable doubt that Tax-Free NY will spur economic growth. The Citizens Budget Commission, a business-backed group, has reported that New York State already spends about $7 billion annually to foster economic development without any evidence that this funding has been productive. The Alliance for a Greater New York, a group with a liberal orientation, has noted that, in the past year, the state gave away $490 million to businesses for projects through its Industrial Development Agencies. Of these projects, half failed to create any jobs and another quarter lost a total of 17,000 jobs. Criticizing Tax-Free NY, Crain’s New York Business, a leading commercial publication, stated that “history tells us these kinds of strategies don’t work.” During the administration of Republican George Pataki, “the state created Empire Zones . . . with special tax breaks and incentives. . . . No area ever showed any real economic gains. They were eventually phased out when it became clear they had achieved virtually nothing.” In addition, these economic development programs were riddled with abuse and fraud by unscrupulous companies.

As a result, significant criticism of the governor’s plan has begun to emerge. The small Conservative Party — a key ally of the Republican Party — formally denounced Tax-Free NY, arguing that “government should not be deciding what businesses receive government handouts that give them advantages over other businesses.” Journalists asked the governor what would stop the favored companies from simply packing up and leaving after their decade of tax breaks. According to the president of the Civil Service Employees Association: “The governor doesn’t get the fact that more corporate welfare is no answer to New York’s economic challenges.”

Why, then, despite the obvious limitations of Tax-Free NY, is the governor promoting it so vigorously? One reason, some observers contend, is that Cuomo is a very ambitious man, with his eyes on a run for the White House. Determined to win re-election by a huge margin, he needs to strengthen his sagging appeal in upstate New York to do so. In addition, Cuomo has been closely allied with the state’s corporate leaders, who have poured millions of dollars into promoting his pro-business agenda. Championing tax cuts to business helps cement this alliance.

Ironically, it’s quite possible that the governor could spur economic growth and job creation if he just reversed his proposal. Instead of throwing more tax dollars at profit-making businesses while starving public education, he could channel that same money into the SUNY system. In this fashion, he would help build the kind of university that, through its intellectual excellence, would foster advanced scientific experimentation, economic innovation, and a highly-educated workforce. But that’s not at all his plan. Corporations, politicians, and educators across the country are watching closely.


Dr. Lawrence Wittner ( is Professor of History emeritus at SUNY/Albany and writes for PeaceVoice. His latest book is “What’s Going On at UAardvark?” – a satire on the corporatization of higher education.]

Yours for a nonviolent future,
Tom H. Hastings, Ed.D.
Director, PeaceVoice Program,
Oregon Peace Institute

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Special to The Enterprise

Child care: too little for the little

June 22, 2013 |

Child Care: Too Little for the Little
By Linda Turpin

If you’re a baby in Yolo County who needs a safe, nurturing child care center while Mom or Dad work or attend school, good luck.
Throughout Yolo County, there are just 280 infant-toddler center slots and more than 4,500 infants and toddlers, according to “Child Care in Yolo County: Preliminary Findings from the 2013 Needs Assessment,” issued in June by the Yolo County Local Child Care Planning Council. The Needs Assessment, released every five years, tracks the county’s child care needs and availability.
“In 2008, we had infant care being served by our school districts. But now, all school districts eliminated infant care,” said Gail Nadal, Yolo County Office of Education’s director of early childhood education and Yolo County Child Care Planning Council coordinator.
“Now, it’s only Early Head Start in the whole county for center-based care,” she said.
According to Nadal, state-mandated staffing ratios’ attendant costs drove school districts’ decision to shutter infant care.
“To run infant toddler care is very expensive,” she said, noting that infant care requires one teacher for every four infants but the adult-to-child ratio for preschoolers is one teacher for a dozen preschoolers. So cash-strapped school districts looking to save on extra employee salaries, pay hikes and other associated expenses “are putting the money into a preschool program” instead of infant-toddler early education.
But it’s not just babies and toddlers left out in the cold. It’s rough for their preschool-age siblings to find care, too.
And what space there is doesn’t come cheap.
“If you have two children in care full-time it gets pretty expensive,” said Tamiko Kwak, senior child care supervisor for the City of Davis’s Child Care Services, which serves the entire county. Privately paying full-time child care for an infant in Yolo County hits $800 to $1200 monthly; and for a preschooler, $700 to about $1,000 a month, Kwak said.
For many parents, though, private pay child care is not a real option: A parent working full-time at a minimum wage job earns $1,344 monthly, before taxes.
According to the Child Care Planning Council’s report, not only is there a great unmet need for more child care options in Yolo County, but families in every region of the county need help paying for it. And there are nowhere near enough government subsidies to go around.

Budget Cuts Spell Hard Times
Nearly 800 Yolo County low-income infants, toddlers and preschoolers got kicked out of th