About Newsroom


Santa Clarita Gazette and Free Classifieds is a locally owned weekly publication. Each week you will find news, opinion, restaurant reviews and more plus over 800 classified ads online and in print! Each week’s issue is printed and distributed on Thursdays and Fridays, the full edition is also here on the web site on Thursdays as a page flip. All of the articles and classified ads are online and display ads are printed and appear on various pages of the web site to correspond with the print ad.

Ads / Latest items listed


1986 Nissan Pickup,

4 cylinders, 5 speed, runs well, $1500. 818-439-2099



1998 Chevy Astrovan V6 automatic.

Passenger for 7 people. Very good, $1200 OBO 818-439-2099 Joe



Moving, many items for sale.

Newhall area. Leave message. 661-992-8717



Precious moment collection

Newhall area about 80 pieces Leave message. 661-992-8717



Kenmore air conditioning

portable for apartment $300 Newhall area, leave message 661-992-8717



GE Washing Machine.

Portable, for apartment, $300 Newhall area. Leave message. 661-992-8717



Seeking room with bath,

close to Santa Monica, Venice, Marina Del Rey area. Price negotiable. Please call Suzi 661-309-2426




The nations largest senior living referral service. Contact our trusted, local experts today. Our service is free, no obligation. CALL 1-844-722-7993



1915 Ford Model-T 3-door touring sedan.

Excellent shape. 661-714-2245



Parts for a 1999 Chevy Suburban

5.7 liter. 661-713-4359



Two ceiling fans.

Beautiful - five blade, 4 light, white in color. Matching fans. Paid $900 each, sell both for $150. 310-633-1214



Free five-month-old male kitten.

Indoor only, sweet and loving. Needs to be neutered, pound bound. Please leave message 661-904-1452



Kenmore washer and dryer

whirlpool sell both for $50, $25 each. Mitch 661-305-0552



Many jigsaw puzzles –

$2.00 each. For sale 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. May 20th during West Greenbrier Yard Sale 661-288-2662



Complete socket fusion kit

for 1.5 and 3 quarter inch sizes $300 661-222-2234 ask for Jim.



BMW run flat tire

size 225-55-R17-97V 10 percent used. $70 661-222-2234 ask for Jim.



Full size bed frame

for a mattress $15 in good condition 661-722-2879



Free duck and chicken.

Both lay eggs. 661-860-0695 About a year old.



Necklace –

vintage look, pinks and roses, $15 cash only Canyon Country 661-309-7311



Sears tent by Hillary

$35. Heavenly bamboo plant, 6ft high you dig up and remove. $37 818-366-7925



Lovely large ornate picture frame, gold.

56 inches by 33 inches. For picture size 4ft by 2ft $127. Art box, 13inx17in wood, $37. Portfolio 24inx30in $37. Drying board 20inx25in $37 818-366-7925



Car cover large new in box

GoodWrench Polycotton fabric $55 818-366-7925



Tiffany and Co.

crystal bowls. $60 818-447-6028



Bakeware by Temp-tations at QVC.

Two different sets, one oval, they go from freezer to oven to microwave to table. $45 818-447-6028

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Posts / Recent blog posts

Local Crime and Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | May 26, 2017

On May 19 at 12:30 p.m. a theft was reported on the 26400 block of Bouquet Canyon Road. And on May 20 at 10 p.m. a petty theft was reported on the 19800 block of Christopher Lane.

On May 19 at 2 a.m. a theft was reported on the 27000 block of Clarence Court. And a theft was reported on May 21 at 1:22 p.m. on the 24200 block of Valencia Blvd.

A theft was reported on the 23500 block of The Old Road on May 19 at 1 a.m. And another theft was reported on the same day at 6:52 a.m. on the 24300 block of The Old Road.

Canyon Country
A vehicle grand theft was reported on the 19600 block of Drycliff St. on May 19 at 5:25 a.m. And an alleged grand theft of a vehicle occurred on May 21 at 11:33 a.m. near Sandy Drive and Sierra Hwy.

An alleged assault occurred on the 28600 block of Black Oak Lane on May 15 at 11:30 p.m., and a vehicle burglary allegedly occurred on the 31000 block of The Old Road on May 17 at 6:30 a.m.

Santa Clarita
A vehicle burglary was reported at 8:52 a.m. on May 20 on the 26400 block of Golden Valley Road. And a petty theft allegedly occurred on the same day at 10:15 p.m. on the 26400 block of Carl Boyer Drive.

Stevenson Ranch
On May 18 at 4:30 a.m. near the 5 Fwy and Magic Mountain Pkwy theft from a boat, plane or private residence allegedly occurred. A burglary was reported on the 25600 block of The Old Road on May 18 at 6:20 p.m.

Police Blotter

A 25-year-old cashier from Valencia was charged with evading a police officer, disregarding safety. And a 33-year-old Simi Valley electrician was arrested for showing a false ID to a peace officer. A 22-year-old Valencia man was charged with obstructing/resisting an executive officer.

A 49-year-old mobile mechanic from Burbank was arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant. And a 33-year-old plumber from Canyon Country was arrested for battery against a former spouse.

A 33-year-old Santa Clarita woman who works for Shell was arrested for grand theft of money/property valued at greater than $400. A 32-year-old gardener from Palmdale was charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent.

A 25-year-old Santa Clarita transient was arrested for burglary.

A 45-year-old service clerk from Newhall, an unemployed 25-year-old Canyon Country woman and a 26-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita man were each charged with theft of personal property.

A 21-year-old Valencia student was charged with receiving known stolen property with a value higher than $950.

A 29-year-old singer from Glendale was charged with possession of a device/instrument/paraphernalia.

Two unemployed Canyon Country residents — a 53-year-old man and a 55-year-old woman—were cited for possession of a controlled substance for sale. And an unemployed 57-year-old Santa Clarita man was arrested for maintaining a place to sell controlled substance. A couple of Reedley field workers in their 30s were arrested for the sale/offer to sell/transport marijuana.

Charges of possession of a controlled substance went to:
20-year-old unemployed Tujunga woman
24-year-old unemployed Castaic woman
24-year-old welder from Sylmar
37-year-old unemployed Winnetka man
27-year-old sales rep from Woodland Hills
18-year-old construction worker from Arleta
19-year-old Canyon Country man who vacuums vehicles
35-year-old unemployed Newhall man
23-year-old houseman from Reseda
30-year-old unemployed Saugus
24-year-old construction worker from Culver City
37-year-old unemployed Orange County man

DUIs with prior arrests included:
20-year-old unemployed Tujunga man
55-year-old Somis man
46-year-old teacher from Saugus

Music Student Receives $21,000 Scholarship

| Community | May 26, 2017

College of the Canyons music student Justin Horwitz was offered a $21,000 transfer scholarship to Rider University in New Jersey. Unaware that the university offered talent scholarships, the 22-year-old was surprised by the scholarship offer, which was based on his performance during a recent audition.

“If I had known, I probably would have been more nervous for my audition,” said the Valencia resident who will be graduating from COC in June and continue his studies to become a music director.

Horwitz started playing piano when he was eight years old, but it wasn’t until he played piano in a production of “Into the Woods” at the age of 15 that he discovered his love for theatre.

“Music is an aesthetic to my identity as an artist, as opposed to theatre, which forms the core of it,” said Horwitz, who realized he could marry his two passions as a musical director. “In theatre, this is traditionally the person whose job is to bridge the gap between two worlds — theatre and music — which need to symbiotically exist in order for musical theatre to function.”

Being able to float between the college’s music and theatre departments has been instrumental to his training, which includes the ability to analyze music and function as part of an ensemble.

“For someone who wants to do what I do, understanding the beats and changes an actor makes to communicate a thought is just as important as being able to analyze the harmonic structures a composer uses to communicate the very same idea,” said Horwitz. “I feel very lucky to have had great teachers.”

Among those who guided Justin at COC is Dr. Carmen Dominguez, dean of the college’s School of Visual and Performing Arts, who helped Horwitz develop skills to be a better accompanist and provided him with the opportunity to learn from experienced music directors.

“Justin is the rare student who, in addition to having strong piano technique and musical talent, also works diligently to expand his musical theatre repertoire,” said Dominguez. “He works every day, learning new music from every era of musical theatre. He has tremendous potential to succeed.”

Six days out of the week, Horwitz can be found sitting at the piano in the Pico Hall practice room, practicing for up to five hours.

“For musicians, practice rooms often become sanctuaries — safe spaces — and I’ll miss the one I use at COC,” said Horwitz. “I’ve grown a lot in there.”

Trump’s Brilliance

| Opinion | May 26, 2017

by Joshua Heath

Since Ronald Reagan, Republicans have styled themselves as the party of the middle class and the affluent. Their rhetoric paints these demographics as the hard-working, “true” Americans, while the poor, by contrast, receive stern criticism. Low-income folks have no one to blame but themselves, according to Republicans; they are simply too lazy and morally corrupt to do better in life.

For many Americans, these arguments made the GOP appear mean-spirited and cruel. In turn, they went and elected Barack Obama twice as president — a man who bases his politics on a sense of compassion for all.

However, during his presidential campaign, Donald Trump up-ended this status quo. He didn’t utter a single word against the poor. Instead, he styled himself as their champion and the champion of “forgotten men and women” everywhere. Working families, average Americans, those who have dropped out of the middle class — Trump promised to fight for each of these groups.

He said he would wage war against the political elites who engineered the trade deals and immigration policies that had cost them their jobs. If he was elected president, their station in life would rise. They would reclaim the American dream.

This was an incredible shift from typical conservative thinking. Effectively, Trump campaigned like a democrat. He focused on uplifting ordinary Americans — the waitress, the school teacher, the bus driver — instead of helping the wealthy. But instead of offering them more government benefits, he offered them conservative policy that he claimed would create jobs, raise their incomes, and reduce their healthcare bills.

In essence, Trump innovatively campaigned with the idealism of a Democrat, but offered conservative ideas. To his supporters, he is as iconic a figure as Franklin Delano Roosevelt is for liberals, except instead of waging war on the “economic royalists” as FDR did, Trump has promised to fight the political elites.

Most Democrats have not yet picked up on Trump’s genius. They still see him as an orange buffoon, but this thinking will only harm them. In order to successfully counter Trump, liberals must first see him for what he is: a shrewd, brilliant politician who knows exactly what he is doing.

Then Democrats must advocate as forcefully for working families as Trump does but, of course, offer progressive policies instead. If they ever hope to reclaim power, they must defeat Trump in a war of ideas. Underestimating him and making fun of him only works in his favor. Average Americans, faced with a choice between supporting their “champion” and a political party dedicated to deriding him, will choose Trump every time.

Americans Shafted by Budget

| Opinion | May 26, 2017

by Angel Cruz

The White House last week unveiled one of the most aggressive fiscal budgets in modern U.S. history — a vicious program designed to cut taxes on the wealthy and to utterly destroy social welfare programs. It is not enough that many Americans sludge through this recessive economy and those at the very bottom have the last safety net cut from beneath them.

This is a program that has been years in the making. Ever since the pitched battles in the 20th century for labor rights and social programs, the rich have always resented those who begged for more than scraps. Trump and the Republicans, among the most unapologetic defenders of brutal capitalism, have become emboldened since gaining power to not only halt progress, but to reverse it completely. The Democrats over the years have only asked for meager gains for the well-being of the public. Meanwhile, the Conservatives have the freedom of not having to play with niceties. They can say in your face that if you can’t afford it, well, tough break — guess you are not working hard enough, not “competing” enough to even scrape by.

The logic that honest Conservatives will admit to is that Capitalism is “survival of the fittest” — fittest in the sense that those who are born with capital in hand deserve to live, and let the poor be damned. The massive cuts to Medicaid and ACA are such an abomination that people are becoming furious, because they see that it is not a choice to choose insurances but to choose starvation or medical bankruptcy. This is wildly unpopular and the Republicans know it, as they shirk & hide away from town hall meetings. This is the logic of the defenders of unbridled Capitalism, that they (the Republicans) must enact these programs, while risking their employment, come 2018. It is ridiculous to see their logic, that cutting Medicaid, one of the most beneficial (75 million Americans relying on it) and popular programs, has to be done so that those that survive on it can have the freedom of not relying on their government. The idea of needing the government to survive is disgusting to them, as they say with no hint of irony that they will never need it.

It is amazing to see beyond the absolute gutting of the welfare state that there will also be an increase in military spending. Beyond the horrors of an even larger military industrial complex, endless warfare throughout some of the most impoverished nations. You just know that none of that money will be earmarked for the social programs for the soldiers who give life and limb for our country. I can’t really see this version of the budget passing at all, but to see just how naked and ugly the Conservative vision is, is enough to make one reel. The rich and their apologia hold no love for those that struggle. They cannot even fathom the concept of living paycheck-to-paycheck, where if they were hit with a medical bill they would have to fear bankruptcy. Why even entertain the idea of reading their justifications when you know they are nothing like you. These divisions are real, the middle class is gone, and now there are only two — those who have and those who don’t. It’s grim, but I do hold the belief in facing up to it, because that is the first step in change.

A High Schooler’s POV

| Opinion | May 25, 2017

by Analyn May

A few days ago, I was pondering topics for an article, and for a while I was considering “the dangers of the internet.” Unfortunately, that particular topic has been written about so many times, I hardly had anything new to add. The internet is a scary place, and nobody can deny it. There are so many scammers and ill-intentioned people lurking about, and with the internet as a mask, it’s hard to tell who’s wearing a facade. However, I think there’s a silver lining, and it’s not the “wealth of information” argument I usually hear when people defend the internet. Actually, what I find most appealing about the World Wide Web is the same thing that makes it so terrifying. Allow me to explain.

As I’m typing this article, next to me is a copy of “Pride and Prejudice” for school (although I won’t deny loving the book). As one might suppose by the title, one of the main themes of the book is prejudice: the act of judging someone’s character before knowing their story and intentions. Basically, it’s a fancy word for stereotyping. I’ve already addressed stereotyping, so why bring it up again? Well, that’s where the internet comes into the mix. I’m not saying people on the internet are safe from prejudice: Cyberbullying proves that it happens everywhere. However, on the internet, people can only be bullied for information they choose to reveal about themselves — that is, if they are open about their race, beliefs, etc. But, as I stated before, the internet is a mask. That means two things: One, people can conceal information they wish to keep private, and two, even the information they do reveal feels a lot less relevant. I can tell you in this article that I am blonde. You can even see my blonde hair in my headshot. But you’re reading my words, as opposed to looking at my face; that is, you aren’t focused on the fact that I’m blonde. You may know my age, my gender, and the color of my hair, but when you’re staring at a newspaper page, all those things suddenly seem … irrelevant.

This is the internet’s best feature: the ability to let people communicate with as little prejudice as possible. On the web, people can become friends without first having to consciously get rid of preconceived notions — age, race, gender and appearance all disappear, for the most part. All you think about is personality, beliefs, and shared interests — all the things that really matter in a relationship. Of course, those things can be faked, which is why it’s easy to deceive someone online, but deception has been around far longer than the internet, as have scammers and thieves.

So, why do I tell you all of this? Well, first off, I want to point out the silver lining of internet communication, which many adults overlook. And more importantly, I would like to see us start applying the good parts of the internet to real life. There’s a lot of push right now to not judge first appearances, which is good, but we’re not done yet. There’s been some improvement in our society as far as removing assumptions based on race and appearance (clothes/hair/body type). That’s a good start. But there are many more preconceptions we need to eliminate. One of these is age: Old does not always mean wise, and young does not always mean foolish. Also, old does not always mean traditional, and young does not always mean rebellious. You get my point. We’re making progress, but we have a long way to go to remove prejudice from our community. Just remember there’s more to a person than what’s on the surface, and often, it’s when someone wears a mask that you can see them most clearly.

Of course, that’s just my POV. Until next time, this is Analyn May, signing off.

White Ribbon Week to Raise Traffic Safety Awareness

| Community | May 25, 2017

In an effort to remind young graduating seniors of the serious consequences that can occur when they drive while distracted or impaired, a Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputy visits area schools at the end of the year. Local high school assemblies are held where white ribbons are handed out, which are attached to cards listing the names of Santa Clarita Valley youth ages 14 to 20 killed in traffic collisions. White Ribbon Week this year is May 22 to June 5, 2017.

The Drive Safe White Ribbon Campaign began in 1997 in response to concerns over the large number of local teenagers who lost their lives in vehicular collisions as a result of driving recklessly or while impaired. The Class of 2003 White Ribbon card listed 17 students killed since 1998. This year’s Class of 2017 card lists the names of seven teens killed since 2011: Sarah Alarid, Albert B. Castro, Dakota Demott, Nicole Lynn Hoffman, Madeline “Mads” Rossiter, Wyatt Anthony Savaikie and Jennifer Stift.

Teens are asked to wear the ribbons during their graduation ceremonies in memory of those who have lost their lives. The ribbons also provide a drive safe message in hopes of encouraging students to have fun during their celebrations without engaging in high-risk activities, such as impaired driving, to prevent any further traffic collisions.

“We want to educate students about safe driving and avoiding distractions such as cell phones or driving while impaired,” law enforcement officials said. “We’re asking the students to wear the white ribbon on their gown during graduation not only to show respect for the fallen, but to remember to make smart choices during graduation time. This can be a dangerous time in a teenager’s life because of being fatigued from studying for finals and celebrating their accomplishments.”

Local residents are also encouraged to wear white ribbons and show their support. Free white ribbons can be picked up at the following sponsor locations: Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital Gift Shop, Frontier Toyota and Santa Clarita City Hall. Other sponsors of the Drive Safe White Ribbon Campaign include the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and Safe Rides. For more information, call 661-200-1306.

Community Invited to Touch-A-Truck Fundraiser

| News | May 25, 2017

This year’s annual Touch-A-Truck event added a feature to bring in additional money for the SCV Senior Center in Newhall. Admission to Touch-A-Truck will cost $5, with a bonus for fathers who bring children along. In honor of Father’s Day weekend, dads with kids are admitted free.

Touch-A-Truck is coming on Saturday, June 17 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at Central Park on Bouquet Canyon Road. Both children and adults are invited to climb on fire engines and operate sheriff’s sirens while enjoying a hands-on learning opportunity with all kinds of other vehicles as well. There will be costumed characters to take photos with and other media draws such as popular movie vehicles.

All proceeds will benefit the SCV Senior Center, which offers such programs as home delivered meals, senior respite day care and supportive services to local seniors.

“Kids love vehicles,” said Santa Clarita City Councilwoman Marsha McLean, who is once again serving as the event chair, “and now they will be able to touch their favorite things on wheels.” She noted that the event will offer a close-up look at a cavalcade of construction rigs, fire engines, sheriff’s cars, military vehicles, famous film industry cars, a TV news van, race cars and “nearly anything you can think of!” McLean concluded.

In addition, the committee is working on such kid-friendly activities as face painting, arts and crafts, bubbles, model building and more — all free with event admission. The City of Santa Clarita’s dump truck filled with balloons will repeat its popular “Beach Ball Dump” just after noon, with free beach balls for all guests.

Food trucks will offer meals and treats to purchase, and costumed characters will be there for photos and interaction with young guests.

Further information and registration forms are available at the event website, http://myscvcoa.org/touch-a-truck/. Event tickets can also be purchased online or at the gate.

Live Entertainment

| Entertainment | May 25, 2017

May 25, Thur 7-10p Bergies steakhouse John Davis, Paul Marshall Classic rock & more
May 25, Fri 6-9p Vincent Hill Station Miles 2 Go Classic easy rock
May 26, Fri 6 – 9p Wolf Creek Brewery Live Music Classic rock to current
May 26, Fri 7 -10p American Legion 507 SCV High School Open Mic /large area for dancing
May 26, Fri 8-11p Vincent Hill Station Wildside Live music
May 26, Fri 8-12m Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Matt Loewy Live music
May 26, Fri 9p–12m Valencia Wine Co PULP Party rock

May 27, Sat 2 – 4:30p Agua Dulce winery Mary White band Country
May 27, Sat 8 – 11p Wine 661 Sean Wiggins & Lone Goat/ Classics & originals
May 27, Sat 8p-12m VFW 6885 Soundwaves Surf & classic rock
May 27, Sat 9p-12m Valencia Wine Co Counterfitz Alternative rock
May 27, Sat 9p–1a Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Robert Heft band Blues & Classics
May 26 & 27, Fri & Sun 8-11p Wine 661 Live music
May 26 & 27, Fri & Sat 9p–12m Salt Creek Grille Live music
May 28, Sun 1 p.m. Drifters Bar Live Music, Memorial Day BBQ, Free Food
May 28, Sun 10a – 2pm Saugus Swap Meet The Fulcos live music
May 28, Sun 1-5p Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Mary White Duo Country

May 28, Sun 2:30-5:30p Valencia Wine Co Morris & Sullivan, guitar duo Classic rock, blues & jazz
May 28, Sun 5-9pm VFW 6885 Apache Rose Varied classic rock

May 28, Sun 5-9pm American Legion 507 Pro Blues Jam Blues Jam

May 30, Tues 7-10p Bergies steakhouse Bunky Spurling Blues & classic rock

May 31, Wed 6-9p Vincent Hill Station Miles 2 Go Classic easy rock
June 1, Thur 7-10p Bergies steakhouse Alan Wright band Classic blues & rock

Non Profit of the Week – Habitat for Humanity SCV SFV

| SC Living | May 25, 2017

Habitat for Humanity San Fernando/Santa Clarita Valleys and Homes 4 Families held their first-ever Rainbow Build in partnership with the LGBTQA+ community of Northern L.A. County. Volunteers formed build teams to help with construction on the remaining 24 homes of a 78-home community for low-income veterans and their families in Santa Clarita. The event was chaired by John Musella, chairman of the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce.

This build is to help complete the third phase of a CalVet REN (Residential Enriched Neighborhood), following the Homes 4 Families (H4F) Enriched Neighborhood model. In attendance was Vito Imbasciani, secretary of the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet). There are 54 veteran families who have already moved into their homes. Enriched Neighborhoods previously built by the organizations include 63 homes in Pacoima and 12 in Sylmar. They will soon break ground on an additional 56 homes for vets in Palmdale.

The model, in addition to providing homes, offers an outcome-based program of wrap-around services and education that enables under-served families to build equity, self-sufficiency skills, and advocacy capacity to move themselves up in socio-economic status. For veterans and their military families, these wrap-around services are enhanced with much-needed trauma-informed programs and services to address PTSD, military sexual trauma, traumatic brain injury and other issues.

The mission of Habitat for Humanity San Fernando/Santa Clarita Valleys is to build affordable homes for low-income civilian and veteran families, and provide services that empower them to build brighter futures as homeowners. They are a locally run, independent, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization service in North Los Angeles city and county, building houses and futures for low-income families. This Habitat affiliate specializes in building Enriched Neighborhood communities which hold the promise to move low-income families up into the middle class, and they have built 320 homes to date. Learn more at www.HumanityCA.org.

Homes For Families is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving low-income families through the development and replication of the Enriched Neighborhood model. This model offers a powerful outcome-based program of wraparound services and education that empowers underserved families to build equity, self-sufficiency skills and advocacy capacity to move themselves up in socio-economic status. For more information, go to www.Homes4Families.org.

Female Athlete of the Week – Gabby Sanchez

| Sports | May 25, 2017

A junior at Canyon High School, Gabby Sanchez has already broken records for the Cowboys as a discus thrower, plus she’s the track and field team’s top scholar athlete with a 5.0 GPA. Last week, Gabby qualified for the CIF Masters Meet with a discus throw of 137 feet, 5 inches at the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 Finals at Cerritos College in Norwalk. She also ranks sixth on Canyon’s All Time List for shot put.

Gabby was named the varsity girls’ basketball team’s “Defensive Player of the Year,” and was named to the first team in the Foothill League. The Canyon girls’ basketball team finished as runner-up in the CIF Championship game for the last two consecutive seasons.

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Always Advocating Alan – I Love a Parade

| Opinion | May 25, 2017

by Alan Ferdman

Everyone loves a Parade. With spectators smiling and waving at the floats, bands and sights to be seen, everyone has a good time. It seems like a time to step back and relax, to forget our daily stress, because today everyone standing next to you is your friend.

So, to share a little known fact about what I do besides go to city council meetings, I am coming out and letting it be known — I am Shriner. As a member of Old West Masonic Lodge in Newhall and the Al Malaikah Shrine in Los Angeles, I was given the ability and honor to ride in parades with the Al Malaikah Motor Patrol.

An added plus is that it is very relaxing for me. Where else can I get away with riding right through red lights, driving on the wrong side of the street, making u-turns in every intersection and parking in no-parking zones, all while waving and smiling at local residents and law enforcement? Oh, I know, you probably favor watching the Shrine Clubs, who come out with grown men decked out in their Fezzes, franticly driving helter-skelter in their custom go-carts. But when Shriners come out in force, it starts with a color guard, shrine officers riding in shiny convertibles, followed by the guard in uniform with their chrome swords, then possibly stagecraft with their locomotive, followed by the clowns dressed to fit the part with red rubber noses. Then comes the coppers with their paddy wagon and, of course, the motor patrol on motorcycles. What a pleasure it is to stop by a young boy or girl who seems ambivalent about the event, and see his or her face light up when they get a special hello. It is a constant reminder for Shriners about participating in a parade. We are not there for ourselves; we are there to raise awareness and promote the 20-plus Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Last Saturday, I rode in the Fillmore Parade with the Shriners for the first time. Even with a population of just 20,000, Fillmore put on a parade that would make any big city proud. The parade traveled down Central Ave. for about three hours and was filled with marching bands, fire trucks and police cruisers, including community groups such as the Voltage Cheer, Love 2 Dance and many more. Everyone was welcoming and friendly. This is an event I will be at next year, no matter if I ride in the parade again or just watch from the sidelines.

The Al Malaikah Motor Patrol participates in several community parades throughout the year, starting on President’s Day weekend at the annual Whiskey Flat Days in Kernville. The event kicks off with the parade on Saturday and includes a humongous mixture of craft booths and food stands. It is truly a family event, and normally full of local and visiting parade-goers. After that, it’s the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Ventura. Sponsored by the Ventura Elks Lodge #1430, the parade starts on East Main Street at 10 a.m. in front of the San Buenaventura Mission, ending at the corner of North Chestnut Street and East Main Street. Space is limited and up to 100 entrants participate each year.
Not to be outdone, the Santa Maria Elks Lodge #1538 puts on a parade and rodeo. Visit Santa Maria in June and you get to see a parade with over 200 entries, including marching bands, majorettes, color guards and floats. The Santa Maria Elks Rodeo is a 3-4 day event founded in 1948.

And who would want to miss the San Luis Obispo Pioneer Day Parade in October. Local heritage and tradition comes alive during the annual event, with many antique steam-powered and gas-powered tractors and other farm machinery. I like this event so much I have been known to leave Santa Clarita at 4 a.m. on my Harley just to be there at staging time. But next time I try that stunt in October, I am bringing hand warmers.

When I show my support for these community day events and parades, please understand I also heartily support our Santa Clarita Fourth of July Parade. Honoring the founding of our great country and those individuals who chose to protect it by serving in the United States Armed Services is something we should remind ourselves to do every day. Coming out on the Fourth of July to publicly show our love for this country is something we should all be willing and proud to do.

At the same time, special area events and parades give local residents a sense of community. Whenever I attend a community parade, it reminds me of a time when our valley had Frontier Days. When it went away at the end of 1997, it left a void in our community, which has not been filled to this day. Here is hoping a Santa Clarita civic organization takes up the Frontier Days banner again. It will make Santa Clarita feel a little more like Mayberry, and I am sure Sheriff Andy Taylor and Aunt Bea would approve.

In the meantime, I am going to continue riding in parades with the Shriners, because raising awareness and supporting Shriners Hospitals for Children is important to a lot of families. Last December, just before Christmas, the Encino Shrine Club sponsored their second annual Toy Ride ending at Shriners Hospitals for Children in Los Angeles. This facility is a pediatric specialty hospital for orthopedic conditions, hand disorders, burn scars, and cleft and lip palate conditions. Shriners Hospitals for Children provides care to children under 18, regardless of a family’s ability to pay.

For me, a most meaningful part of this event was meeting Shriners Hospitals spokesperson, Alex. You know him from watching television commercials. He is the wheelchair-bound young man who always smiles and tells you about the adorable blanket you will receive when you contribute. I want you to know he is a very polite and modest young man with a very special, supportive family. He makes me smile every time I see him on television and reinforces my resolve to continue supporting this very worthy cause.

Athletes of the Week

| SC Living | May 20, 2017

Victoria Kirshner

A senior at Santa Clarita Christian High School, Victoria Kirshner has left a legacy in swimming. Last week at the CIF SS Finals in Riverside she won two CIF titles — one in the 50 free (24.18 seconds) and the other in the 100 free (52.86 seconds). Throughout her four years swimming for Santa Clarita Christian she has won a total of six CIF titles. Initially committing to swim this fall for the University of California, San Diego, Victoria changed her mind and will be attending the United States Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, New York following graduation. She is anxious to attend the Academy and serve her country.

“Victoria is a remarkable athlete and person,” said Elizabeth Kirshner, Santa Clarita Christian swim coach. “She is one of the hardest workers I know and I couldn’t be happier for her and SCCS. I trust that her success in and out of the pool will inspire future swimmers at SCCS to reach their goals.”

Jaeyeol Kim

College of the Canyons sophomore Jaeyeol Kim recorded a 36-hole score of 151 (70/81) to help the Cougars claim the 2017 California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) State Championship at Cypress Ridge Golf Course in Arroyo Grande on Monday. Kim’s opening round score of 70 was tops on the day, while his combined 36-hole score of 151 ranked sixth in the field of 60 individuals. As a result, Kim was named to the CCCAA All-State team. COC claimed its most recent state championship — the program’s eighth overall — with a 24-stroke cushion over second place Cypress College (785).

Afternoon T

| Opinion | May 20, 2017

by T-Katz

Q: I’m finding it hard to make everybody happy. I don’t know how and I’m fried.

A: Fried?! Do you cook? Then imagine owning a small, wonderfully equipped restaurant, with no menu. People just order whatever sounds good to them. You’re left scrambling (frying, poaching, steaming) like mad, knowing there’s no way to whip (beat, whisk, froth) up everything to make everybody happy. Your Yelp reviews are a mess and so are you. Now what? For starters (appetizers, hors d’oeuvres, aperitifs), shutter the doors of this boutique bistro in your brain. That ain’t no way to run a business. It’s certainly no way to run your life.

I want you to read this aloud: “You can please some of the people some of the time, all of the people some of the time, some of the people all of the time, but you can never please all of the people all of the time.” Just reading it is exhausting. Trying to serve up the last bit of that mouthful is even worse.

Attempting to please everyone with a menu of 1001 choices usually means fast, fluffy and not terribly satisfying or healthy. Darling, from here on out, you think of yourself as a fine Michelin-rated restaurant with a specialized menu.

Now, to properly plan any menu you must write it all out and then add or subtract items to make it the best it can be. So, sit down and start writing (single words and sentences) what you feel describes who you are down to your core

(pit, seeds and all). Not who you think you should be or what you think other people think you should be. Oh, and please be honest with yourself about who you truly are. [A bacon bit might dream of being a succulent holiday ham, but it’s not. You wouldn’t serve that on a platter for company.] This page of words doesn’t have to be neat or in order. You throw those ingredients all over the page! After all, that’s often how things float around in our brain. Once you see what’s in your mental pantry, it becomes easier to seriously get cookin’.

Next, circle words of the highest quality (e.g. honorable, kind, compassionate) and cross out the not-so-tasty traits (e.g. anxious, fearful, inflexible). You wouldn’t make a delicious bouillabaisse with bad seafood, so focus on the best of what you see in you.

Lastly, make peace with the fact that some folks prefer neither bouillabaisse nor cioppino, and that’s okay. The bottom line is to take the finest ingredients of your character to ultimately make for a more delicious you. Then, you can be of better service to those who fully appreciate you.

The Michelin guide gives stars to rate fine dining establishments. One star signifies “a very good restaurant.” Two stars is “worth a detour” and three stars is “…vaut le voyage!” Trust me, when you work and confidently present your finest, it’s worth the journey. Yours and those you serve.
xo – t.

COC Spring Electronica Concert

| Community | May 20, 2017

The College of the Canyons music department will present its spring “Electronica Musique & Multi-Media” show on Wednesday, May 31 at the Black Box Theatre.

The free concert will feature the innovative sounds created by 18 COC students enrolled in various music courses, such as Music 142 (Electronic Music Production) and Music 146 (Electronic Music for the Stage).

“Come and marvel at the sounds and sights of interactive works combining synthetic with real voices,” said Dr. Bernardo Feldman, chair of the college’s music department. “Attendees will be able to immerse themselves within the musical textures bursting with boundless sonic energy and be transported by an array of hypnotic and enigmatic videos.”

The original music will be performed in conjunction with the movements of COC dance students under the direction of Phylise Smith.

“The show will challenge your senses with the sophisticated and cutting-edge music that is both intellectually challenging and exquisitely beautiful,” Feldman said.

The concert will take place at 7:00 p.m. at the college’s Black Box Theater in the Performing Arts Center.

Admission is free and open to the public. Space is limited.

Last fall, Electronica was performed in partnership with Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico en Los Angeles (UNAM-LA) at UNAM-LA’s Downtown L.A. location.

For more information about the annual Electronica Musique & Multi-Media Concert, visit www.canyonsPAC.com.

Art Exhibit Opens at Westfield Valencia Town Center

| Community | May 19, 2017

A new art exhibit opened at Town Center Art Space at Westfield Valencia Town Center this week. “The Intermissions” is a free show featuring the works of Lucas Novak.

Inspired by 20th century artists Henri Matisse and Wassily Kandinsky, Novak’s work in the exhibit will include oils, acrylics, fabric and clay. Some paintings are mounted on canvas, while others make use of the color and texture of wood panels.

“In the battles of life, there is loss, persistence, and liberation. Some of these episodes, more dramatic than others, serve as pillars or beacons in our own timelines. Then there are the lulls or periods of recovery from and preparation for past and future battles — the necessary intermissions in between that may feel nameless but impact us nevertheless, often in more important ways than the memorable events of our pasts,” says Novak. “Sometimes we meander along our amorphous, cracked, or abstract thoughts. Our plans for the future are never definite and our memories constantly change. Nothing lasts forever.”

The Town Center Art Space is located at 24201 W. Valencia Blvd. in Santa Clarita, next to Sisley Restaurant. The pieces will be on display through September 15, 2017, and a free public reception will be held on Wednesday, May 24, from 6-8 p.m. During the reception, guests will enjoy light appetizers and live music while also having the chance to meet Novak and see the art featured in the exhibition.

For more information about current and upcoming exhibits in the Santa Clarita Valley, visit SantaClaritaArts.com.

Zonta Presents Awards to Grant and Scholarship Winners

| Community | May 19, 2017

More than $16,000 was awarded last week to local women and non-profit groups at an annual event hosted by Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley. Club members gathered at the Embassy Suites in Valencia with recipients, who were chosen by committees based on applications received.

Clarissa Michael, a 19-year-old Canyon High School graduate and College of the Canyons student, received the 2017 Jane M. Klausman award, presented by committee co-chairs Cheryl Wasserman and Karla Edwards. Michael is headed to Loyola Marymount University in the fall, where she will earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting in two years. She is taking an accelerated three-year program at LMU, which places her on track to earn a master’s degree and become a Certified Public Accountant. She currently works as a bookkeeper for a Santa Clarita business and hopes to accept an internship in a “Big 4” firm once she completes her studies. Clarissa received $2,000 from the local Zonta Club, and her application has been forwarded to District 9, where she could win an additional $1,000. The district winner’s application will go on to Zonta International, where 12 women will be chosen to win an additional $7,000.

Zonta member Phyllis Walker, 2016 JMK Committee chair, recognized Marianne Gaviara, last year’s Klausman winner, for also winning the District 9 award.

Co-chairs Gloria Mercado Fortine and Mary Ann Dortch presented the Young Women in Public Affairs awards.

Five local women who have faced life-changing situations will share $7,000 in Virginia Wrage Memorial Scholarship grants. Virginia Wrage Committee co-chairs Barbara S. Cochran and Jaci Hoffman joined Randy Wrage, son of the program’s namesake, in presenting the awards to Lisette Ferguson, Jennifer Campbell, Jennifer Kennedy, Kelly Ongle and Annelie, who chooses to use just her first name.

The Virginia Wrage Memorial Scholarship is named for a former Zonta member who re-started her life as a flight attendant in her 50s and followed her dream for several years before succumbing to cancer. The club developed the memorial scholarship program in her name shortly thereafter and has maintained it every year since her death.

Lisette Ferguson became a single mother two years ago after leaving an abusive marriage. Finishing school became imperative for the Stevenson Ranch resident. When she obtains her business degree from National University in March 2019, she will work to become a certified fraud examiner. She hopes eventually to work for the FBI and then run her own business. She will use her scholarship to help cover a school loan.

Jennifer Campbell is a Castaic resident and single mother who enrolled at College of the Canyons to become a registered nurse. Last year she was diagnosed with Chiari malformation type 1, a congenital defect that went undiagnosed until then. Due to complications from subsequent surgeries and the disease itself, Jennifer suffers regularly from headaches, hearing loss and tinnitus. There is no cure for her condition, but she perseveres so that she can set a good example for her four-year-old son. She plans to purchase school supplies and books with her Zonta scholarship.

Valencia resident Jennifer Kennedy believes that surviving breast cancer two times has made her a better person. Now she can serve others and understand exactly what they are going through. She was 32 years old when she first heard the devastating news, and more than two decades later, she received the diagnosis again. Jennifer turned her pain into her passion and created Footprints in Pink, a resource for women, caretakers and families going through breast cancer. Footprints in Pink offers its free services locally and nationally to all patients, helping them find free products and financial resources and deal with other aspects that affect them and their families. Her Zonta scholarship will allow her to expand her services to aid more breast cancer victims and their families.

Ongle’s life-altering experience began at age 20, when her son suffered a stroke in utero, leaving him gravely disabled for life. In 2009, she gave birth to another child, who was diagnosed with autism. A resident of Valencia, Kelly has returned to school to earn a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education with an emphasis in special education. The scholarship will help pay for her studies at the University of Laverne. She expects to graduate in 2019, although she would eventually like to earn a Ph.D. in special education.

Canyon Country resident Annelie, who prefers not to use her last name, developed a passion for flying in junior high school, but life took her on an extended plan to achieve that dream. In July 2016, she passed the written FAA test and flew her first solo flight two months later. While working 30 hours each week and homeschooling four daughters, Annelie manages to attend Glendale Community College and volunteer in the community. With her scholarship, she will begin her second phase of pilot training, after obtaining her private pilot license. Her eventual goal is to become a commercial airline pilot.

Four local young women are sharing $4,000 in scholarships offered by the Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley. Mary Gooneratne received the Young Women in Public Affairs Award locally and her application has been forwarded to Zonta’s District 9 for further competition. In addition, Joyce Kim and Sabrina Pin accepted cash awards as runners-up in the YWIPA competition locally.

The top Young Women in Public Affairs award was granted to Gooneratne, a senior at William S. Hart High School. She expressed a desire to work in government and hopes to use a college education to pursue a cybersecurity-oriented career with the National Security Agency. Her dream is eventually to enroll in law school and then direct her cybersecurity career toward foreign intelligence and policy.

Ranking at the top of her class academically, Mary served as president of her high school speech and debate team for two years and as vice president of the Key Club. She was an active volunteer in the last presidential election campaign and personally helped raise thousands of dollars for her candidate. She is concerned about issues that impact women, such as equal pay, forced marriages, female genital mutilation and female literacy around the world. She received $1,000 as the local winner and is eligible for another $1,000 if she is selected as the District 9 winner. That winner will go on to international competition, where 10 young women will receive $4,000 each.

Runner-up Joyce Kim is a senior at Golden Valley High School, where she is studying international relations and political science. She aspires to become a diplomat or ambassador. As yearbook editor-in-chief, she instituted a cultural spread, interviewing students from different countries and highlighting their cultures and traditions. She worked on a Santa Clarita City Council election campaign and was happy to see a woman running for higher office.

Hart High School senior Sabrina Pin is also a runner-up. She is interested in pursuing a career in public service or politics, and hopes to obtain a law degree. She intends to study public policy with a minor in computer science at Duke University. Throughout her high school years, she has been involved in Associated Student Body, California Girls State, swim, and the speech and debate team. She also was involved with the California YMCA Youth and Government, a model legislature and court program. In her junior year, she interned for a State Assemblyman, listening and responding to constituent concerns. Sabrina’s involvement in speech and debate, particularly in Public Forum debate, has sparked her interest in international relations. She has debated everything from foreign involvement in Iran to development aid in sub-Saharan Africa.

Four non-profit agencies dedicated to serving the Santa Clarita Valley are sharing $5,500 in Community Grants. Award checks were presented by committee co-chairs Suzie Alziebler and Judy Penman to William S. Hart (WISH) Foundation, Domestic Violence Center, SCV Senior Center and College of the Canyons Foundation.

Zonta’s mission is improving the lives of women and girls through service, advocacy and awareness, and successful grant writers focused on specific programs that meets those goals.

The WISH Foundation grant will help fund a proposed Girls Who Code Club at Rio Norte Junior High School, aiming to advance the academic and economic status of young women by encouraging them to enroll in computer science courses at the high school and college levels and eventually pursue computer science and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers.

The Domestic Violence Center will use its grant to support its local shelter for victims of domestic violence and their families. The center has been servicing the local community for 12 years and is in much need of repairs and maintenance. The grant will go toward materials needed to modernize the kitchen and give it a much-needed renovation to make the room a welcoming area for women and children to fix their meals and gather in an positive environment.

The SCV Senior Center grant will be used to create an “Empowering Senior Women” workshop series. In three separate seminars, experts in the field of aging will provide comprehensive, leading-edge information, resources and support to senior women to give them tools to become proactive and maintain good physical and mental health.

College of the Canyons Foundation will use its grant to establish a domestic violence advocates training project. The goal of the program is to train 12 COC students to become domestic violence advocates, who will use their training to provide service back to the SCV Domestic Violence Center. They will also design action plans and devise strategies to inform others of this issue and how to confront it. Once trained, these 12 young women will serve as campus mentors to educate others to the signs, dangers and effects of domestic violence.

Sicilian Mafia has Nothing on the Dems!

| Opinion | May 19, 2017

by Joe Messina

The days, and soon to be weeks, after FBI Director James Comey’s firing have really turned up the heat on the Democrats. Some of you have that confused dog look on your face right about now. I say that because up until November 8, 2016 the Dems were the American Psychiatric Association’s poster child for the Jekyll and Hyde syndrome.

The so-called “tampering” in the recent presidential election showed emails released by the “Russian” WikiLeaks (according to Mrs. Clinton) disclosing in unfiltered detail how Democrats really felt about their rank and file constituents, those average working Americans. They made fun of Mexicans, blacks, and Jews. We saw firsthand in those emails that, from day one, they had no intention of allowing Bernie Sanders to ever win. They made sure he didn’t get the nomination. Yes, the DNC!

We saw firsthand, after being told that questions were never given to candidates in advance of a debate, that, in fact, they had been passed off by the DNC to Mrs. Clinton to give her a leg up. And when Donna Brazile, the Interim Chair for the DNC, was asked if that had happened, she emphatically stated that it did not. For added emphasis she said, “As a black Christian woman…” Yup. Every one of the labels that we are never, ever allowed to question. She pulled the race, religion, and woman card all in one breath! But, to my Christian sister, the Bible says the lie will tell on you! And it did. She later had to apologize and recant those words, admitting she gave the questions to Mrs. Clinton in time to prepare for the debate.

Are you following? Lying, cheating, cover up, speaking ill of races, ethnicities, and females. Working against one of their own while insisting that it wasn’t happening. All these issues and who on the Left was outraged? No one. The one in the DNC caught coordinating it all, Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, was actually promoted to an organization that could use her skills, Hillary Clinton’s campaign! And, she’s still a sitting congresswoman.

Yet, with all this evidence and proof we are told there is nothing to see here. Move along! No one’s feet were held to the fire and simply put, if there was no action taken against these people, then the Democrat Party, the Clintons, the Obamas, Senator Chuck Schumer, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, and the rest of the Democrat leadership are all complicit in those vile acts.

This same group called many, many, many times for the ouster of FBI Director Comey, stating he was untrustworthy, incompetent, and that he compromised the department and our national security. Many of those same Democrats called for his immediate removal. Congresswoman Maxine Watters stated this week that if Hillary were president then the firing would have been OK. But since it was Trump, it had to be a cover up because, as we all know, the Clintons are stellar Americans with an impeccable record of service, TO THEMSELVES!

Dems are just sure that Comey was getting closer to getting some dirt on Trump, as was evidenced by him asking for more money for the investigation. WRONG! According to Acting Director McCabe, they needed no more resources. They have over 160 agents working the case! He was then asked if the firing would hamper the investigation, stop it, or slow it down. His answer again was, “NO!” Do the Dems really believe that the only guy who could handle this was Comey? With all of those capable agents, the only one who could keep it together was Comey? Do they really believe that we need an “incompetent” leader at the helm of the FBI? Their words, not mine. That’s one of the words they used to describe him. Why would we trust Democrats with our security when they are so willing to allow someone they don’t trust at the helm? Someone who had to come back time after time to correct his testimony. How much dope are they smoking in D.C.?

Yes, these same Democrats without one shred of evidence want you to believe that Mr. Trump and his team is in the pocket of Vladimir Putin and the Russian government to somehow give Russia the upper hand in American politics. That somehow all this Russian activity started when Trump decided to run for office. They are outraged that Mr. Trump mentioned while he was campaigning that if the Russians hacked Hillary’s email server they should release every document they got. How dare he ask them to get involved!

Yet many of you didn’t know, or forgot, that Mr. Ted Kennedy asked the Russians to get involved in his run for President. And he was to supply them with intel on his opponent, they would release it, and then he would reward them later for a job well done! Dems were good with that.

We are all fixated on Comey and the Healthcare bill and whether or not Trump really got two scoops of ice cream to everyone else’s one (yes, that’s a real story CNN covered). But the real story is how dangerous the Democrat leadership has become. How anti-American they have become. Even old-time rank-and-file voters are concerned with how far Left the Party is going and has already gone. Democrats keep the rank-and-file fooled as a good sleight of hand magician keeps his audience fooled.

The most dangerous pilot you can fly with is one who believes he never makes mistakes and believes he knows more than pretty much anyone else. I have had my helicopter pilot’s license for nearly 30 years. And I have seen too many pilots gone too early because of how “smart” they were. Democrat leadership believes they know more than anyone else. They believe they know more than their rank-and-file. Even when polls, their own polls, show the people don’t want it, they vote for it anyway.

Dems have become dangerous because so many blindly follow a leadership that wants more and more power at any cost. They want to be in total control, at any cost. It’s not equality they want, it’s control!

Democrat leadership are the real bullies who tell their fellow electeds, “Do what we say or you’ll end up with all the ‘crappy’ committees and assignments!” or “Vote this way or you won’t get any help in the next election!” Does it happen on both sides? Yes. But the level of thuggery by which the Democrat leadership does it can only be topped by the Sicilian Mafia itself!

Democrats have used the same mantras for years. … Republicans hate women, children, clean air, clean water, immigrants, sick people, old people, the Earth, pot smokers, poor people, and anyone in the LGBTQ community. WOW! We are a busy lot of haters, aren’t we? And they are just a bunch of fear-mongering bullies who think they can scare you into voting for them. They are the Big Tent Party? Not so much! Only if you are on the inside. Only if you fall in line with their way of thinking. Like a big gumbo, only they got all the ingredients wrong.

Since Trump has been elected, no blacks have been put back in chains (Joe Biden’s claim), women have not had their right to vote or to have abortions taken away, minorities still have the right to vote, schools are still teaching all children, and Al Sharpton and the other MSNBC hosts are still out of jail, even though they owe millions of dollars in back taxes.

This is both scary and depressing. … Democrats believe Republicans are ALWAYS wrong and Dems are ALWAYS right. And that makes them very, very dangerous!

Long Live Nancy Pelosi!

**The Views and Opinions expressed in these columns are those of the writer, not necessarily those of Valley Publications/Santa Clarita Gazette.**


Non-Profit of the Week: Paint Care

| SC Living | May 18, 2017

Back in October 2012, a group of paint manufacturers created a structured method for recycling leftover paint. They established a non-profit organization called PaintCare, making it convenient for individuals to drop off cans they no longer need.

There are 801 drop-off sites in California, thanks to PaintCare, mostly at retail stores—usually home improvement, hardware and paint stores. Members of the public can take unwanted, leftover paint for recycling, as these shop owners are willing to accept them from any household or business in California.

Santa Clarita has one paint retailer, Vista Paint, located at 21010 Golden Triangle Rd., which joined the program in its first year – 2012 – and it’s one of the 801 drop-off sites statewide.

Next weekend, the public has an additional opportunity to turn in their old paint cans at a one-time drop-off event held in Santa Clarita next Saturday, May 20, 2017 (see sidebar).

A number of PaintCare drop-off sites are household hazardous waste programs — either facilities or “round-up events.” These programs are run by a local county or city government agencies, often in partnership with the local garbage and recycling company or transfer station. In addition to accepting paint, these programs usually accept other non-paint hazardous wastes (e.g., pesticides, solvents). Most of these government programs limit participation to households in certain cities or towns. Some of these government programs also allow businesses to make appointments during special hours. Businesses are usually charged fees for non-paint hazardous waste, and sometimes they are charged an administrative fee to schedule an appointment, but they are not charged for paint, on a per gallon basis, if the agency is a PaintCare partner.

A few restrictions apply: there are limits on how much paint can be dropped off per visit. Certain businesses — those that produce more than 220 pounds (about 20-30 gallons) of hazardous waste per month — can only drop off latex paint (they may not drop off oil-based paint).

Products Accepted
PaintCare sites accept house paint, primers, stains, sealers, and clear coatings (e.g., shellac and varnish), but they cannot accept aerosols (spray cans), solvents, and products intended for industrial or non-architectural use. The products they accept are referred to as “PaintCare Products” or “architectural paint,” and they must be in containers that are no larger than 5 gallons in size. Paint must be in its original container and the container must have an original printed label and a secured lid. They cannot accept open or leaking cans.

Free of Charge
There is no charge for dropping off paint at a PaintCare drop-off site. PaintCare is funded by the “PaintCare Fee” which is added to the purchase price of paint sold in the state. These fees are paid to PaintCare by paint manufacturers, then passed down to retailers and to their customers. When you buy paint, you may see a line item on your receipt or invoice for each container. The fee is not a deposit — you don’t get it back when you drop off paint — a common misunderstanding. These fees are used to fund all aspects of the paint stewardship program. Fees pay for paint collection, transportation, recycling, public outreach, and program administration, and to manage old “legacy” paint — the paint that has been accumulating in homes and businesses from before the program started. PaintCare sites accept old paint, even if it is 30 years old!

Paint events like the Santa Clarita drop-off (sidebar) are an ongoing part of the PaintCare program, which is set up year round. This event will accept larger amounts of paint and is a good opportunity for those who have accumulated paint over many years. Residents and businesses from any place in California can bring paint (not just those from Santa Clarita).

If you plan to take your paint to one of PaintCare’s year-round drop-off locations, call the location before bringing your paint to check to see if they can accept the type and amount of paint you would like to recycle. Visit www.paintcare.org/california for locations and phone numbers.
There will be a one-time drop-off event at Via Princessa Metrolink Station, 19201 Via Princessa in Santa Clarita from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. on Saturday May 20, 2017.

Open to all California households and businesses, you may drop off containers meeting the following criteria:
Only cans with original labels
House paint and primers (latex or oil-based)
Deck and concrete sealers
Clear finishes (e.g., varnishes and shellac)

For details on what products are accepted (and not accepted), visit https://www.paintcare.org/santaclarita/.

For more information, call call (855) 724-6809. Or visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/paint-drop-off-event-via-princessa-metrolink-station-santa-clarita-tickets-33154525077.

‘Guys and Dolls’ at the Canyon Theatre Guild

| Entertainment | May 18, 2017

Broadway favorite “Guys and Dolls” will open later this month at the Canyon Theatre Guild in Newhall. Set in the 1940s, characters include nightclub performers, gamblers and even members of the Salvation Army in its early days. The main story involves the lead character, a fly-by-night gambler, attempting to woo a Salvation Army missionary in order to win a bet. There is a side story where a showgirl tries to hook her fiancé of 14 years, who happens to be the founder of “the oldest, established, floating crap game in New York.” The musical comedy has some of the best known tunes from Broadway since it opened in 1950.

“Guys and Dolls” opens Saturday, May 27 at 8 p.m. Adult audience members who arrive at 7 p.m. can enjoy a free wine and champagne reception. Performances are Fridays, June 16 and 23 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, June 10, 17 and 24 at 2 p.m.; Saturdays May 27, June 3, 10, 17 and 24 at 8 p.m.; and Sundays, May 28, June 4, 11 and 18 at 2 p.m. Ticket Prices: $19 Adults, $17 Juniors ( under 18) & Seniors (62+). Call the CTG Box Office for reservations at 661-799-2702.

Local Crime, Bad Boys & Girls

| Police Blotter | May 18, 2017


In the Neighborhood

A petty theft was alleged on May 10 at 3:12 p.m. on the 28100 block of Bobwhite Circle, and again on the same block the next day at 12:15 a.m.

A case of vehicle grand theft was alleged on May 10 at 1:45 a.m. near Avenida Rotella and Orchard Village. Also on May 10, a petty theft was reported on the 23900 block of Decoro Drive at 11:52 a.m.

Grand theft of a boat, plane, private residence, yard, etc. was reported on May 11 at 11:30 p.m. on the 22500 block of 9th Street. On May 12 at 5:15 a.m. a strong-arm robbery was reported near 15th Street and Railroad Avenue.

Canyon Country
A strong-arm robbery was reported near Nadal Street and Whites Canyon Road on May 13 at 9:30 p.m. And on May 14 at 6 p.m. an alleged theft occurred on the 18500 block of Soledad Canyon Road.

An alleged assault occurred on May 9 at 7:30 a.m. on the 31500 block of Castaic Road. And on May 13 at 2 a.m. a petty theft was reported on the 31600 block of Castaic Road.

Santa Clarita
A residential burglary was reported on the 26900 block of Flo Lane on May 10 at 2:17 a.m. Also on May 10, a vehicle burglary was reported on the 22000 block of Windham Way at 11:25 p.m.

Stevenson Ranch
There was a perpetrator search/chase by authorities searching for a residential strong arm burglary suspect, which ended with a K9 flushing out the suspect on May 15 at 6:49 a.m.

Bad Boys & Girls

An unemployed 52-year-old Santa Clarita man was charged with fighting in a public place.

An unemployed 30-year-old Val Verde man was arrested for terrorizing/causing fear.

A 21-year-old medical assistant from Monrovia was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon, not a firearm, with great bodily injury.

A 20-year-old nanny and a 25-year-old electrician from Newhall were both arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant. A 43-year-old grip from Val Verde was picked up for battery against a former spouse.

A 32-year-old transient from Santa Clarita was picked up for disorderly conduct/loitering on private property. A 32-year-old auto detailer from Canyon Country and a 23-year-old unemployed Canyon Country man were both charged with vandalism.

A 47-year-old tattoo artist from Canyon Country was charged with driving with a license that was suspended/revoked for another reason. And a 41-year-old mover from Newhall was charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent.

An unemployed 32-year-old Castaic man was charged with forgery/counterfeiting a public corporate seal.

A 53-year-old painter from Pasadena and an unemployed 18-year-old Santa Clarita man were charged with attempted burglary, and an unemployed 23-year-old Canyon Country woman was arrested for burglary.
A 44-year-old unemployed Saugus man was arrested for unlawful mail theft. And an unemployed 61-year-old from Santa Clarita was charged with theft of personal property.

A 24-year-old Santa Clarita transient was brought up on charges of possession of a device/instrument/paraphernalia. A self-employed 44-year-old Santa Clarita man and a 24-year-old student from Santa Clarita were picked up for possession of controlled substance paraphernalia. A 37-year-old welder from Little Rock, Calif. was picked up for possession/purchase of a controlled substance for sale.

DUIs with prior arrests include:
47-year-old realtor from Valencia
57-year-old self-employed Los Angeles man
58-year-old barber from Sunland
22-year-old machine operator from Palmdale
60-year-old self-employed Sherman Oaks man
21-year-old construction worker from Los Angeles
36-year-old fuel technician from Panorama City

Ask the Experts

| Canyon Country Magazine | May 16, 2017


If a sink is clogged, are there any home remedies you suggest, such as Drano?

We’ve found a few easy steps to keep those drain lines flowing free. Read the following suggestions.

Install a disposal that suits your family’s needs. The smallest one is probably not the best fit for a multiple member family.
Turn on the water and put just a handful of food in at a time. Listen for the disposal to change its sound as food is broken up before adding more. Do not pack food in your disposal.
On a monthly basis, put a tray of ice and a small amount of lemon juice into the disposal and run it to keep blades sharp and disposal clean and smelling fresh.
Never dispose of stringy vegetables or pack pasta in the disposal.

Never use drain cleaners for stoppage in the line. It will only waste your money and can be dangerous to your plumbing system and the plumber repairing it.

What is the most common plumbing problem, and how can a homeowner minimize the chance of it occurring?

The most common problem we see is kitchen drain stoppage, which is mostly caused by the garbage disposal being used improperly or the homeowner having the wrong size of unit.

The key to using a disposal is water. We find most people don’t use enough water with the disposal and let it run long enough to completely break up the food. Plumbing systems were designed to carry waste that has already been digested or degraded, and although a disposal is a useful tool, much care should be taken in breaking down the food completely so it washes away with water.

Hallway Plumbing
26352 Ruether Ave., Santa Clarita        CSL#962937


What is the best way to store an antique/heirloom watch?

Try a standard watch box. Watches should be stored separately from one another to avoid wear caused by friction. Keep automatic watches on winders. Or consider repurposing a cigar case. And put extra valuable watches in a safe.
Does the presence of gems on your watch or watchband affect the value?

If a collectible watch is set with “after market” gems, then yes, it does affect the value. If the gems are set by the factory, then a watch is worth more than those added after the fact.
Vintage Watch Shop & Service Repair Center
18364 1/2 Soledad Canyon Rd.
Canyon Country, CA 91387

Real Estate

What is curb appeal?

It’s that first impression you get when you drive up to a home that makes it stand out. Curb appeal is critical when selling. I have had buyers decide not to even go in to see a home because of the lack of curb appeal. Paint the exterior, upgrade the front door, put in a fence, manicure the lawn, trees and add plants and flowers. Make the home feel alive and inviting. Every time I sell a home for a client I bring in my gardener and pay to have them clean up the front of the home by trimming bushes and adding plants, flowers and mulch before I have my photographer take high resolution pictures for my virtual tour. Most buyers want the same impression they get when their friends and family first see their new home. It gives them a sense of pride and accomplishment and helps validate their home choice.

Which areas of Canyon Country are the hottest right now?

Right now Canyon Country 1 and 2 are selling fast. Mainly because these are areas with prices for first-time buyers that generally have no Mello Roos and no HOA. These homes are selling between $400- $500K and you get a community with great schools, parks and dining. Last week I put over seven offers on homes in this area alone. Right now I have too many buyers and there are not enough homes on the market for the demand. The last two homes I sold in the area had offers the first day for over the asking price. If someone wants to sell at this time, I can have their home sold before they even start packing.

Craig Martin
Realty One Group

Pest Control

What can homeowners do to minimize the chance of getting a rat infestation on their properties?

Here in the SCV we have a very healthy Roof Rat population. They are always a threat, and at all times of the year. Homeowners can do a lot to prevent rats from entering the house, including:
Take a flashlight and a ladder and walk around the exterior of the home to look for any open areas.
Look especially at all the vents, and most importantly, the AC line! We find this is almost always the main access point for rats in the attic.
Carefully use a ladder to access the roofline, using a flashlight to see up and under any roof returns or dark corners for signs of rodents (e.g., droppings or black rub marks).
Identify any overhanging trees and other bushes and shrubs that touch the roof or obscure any vents. Rats love to climb the trees, jump on the roof and, once there, they can chew through wood and stucco to get inside.
It is best to not leave dog food out overnight. Also pick up the dog poo with increased frequency, and try to maintain the dog area better.
If the attic is overwhelmed with rat droppings and other debris, consider having the insulation replaced, or at least cleaned up and sanitized.
Consult a professional for any assistance in this endeavor.

Is there a “season” for bugs, such as ants?

The summer months are prime time for ants, especially July and August. Argentine Ant colonies are very large — up to a million ants, at their peak. In the winter months the colonies are smaller so they do not need as many resources, such as water, but in the summer they need a lot of water in order to survive. They have a hard time finding enough outside, so that is why you find them entering the house, mostly looking for water. The fix is simple for a professional. It can be done with a non-invasive ant bait inside and a perimeter treatment that establishes a barrier.

Joseph Wilson
All Pro Pest Control, Inc.

Of Drinks and Teen Butts

| Opinion | May 12, 2017

by Joshua Heath

It all took place a couple weeks ago, late at night, as I was finishing an essay for school. While taking a study break, I came across a Facebook post that irritated me to no end. On the Santa Clarita Community page Chelsea Jackmond-Ellis, a local resident, authored these immortal words:

“If your kid was at Aldi tonight [a local supermarket], scrawny little guy in a black shirt about 13 with two friends he needs a serious butt kicking! Yelled out ‘f*ck’ really loud for no reason. Then decided to yell out ‘why are there no drinks in this store to shove up my a**’”

Immediately, folks chimed in supporting Jackmond-Ellis. One said the boy should be taken to the local prison to commiserate with some felons. Another argued he was on the path to becoming a low-life. All in all, the comment section turned into an orgy of pointless moralizing directed at a teen who committed the grave sin of telling a joke.

For my money, if I saw the fella wonder about which drink to shove up his butt, I would have first laughed uproariously and then handed him a Pepsi in protest of that awful Kendall Jenner commercial.

But in all seriousness, this episode was another example of a real problem in society: this country has it all wrong when it comes to young people. We judge and shame them, when what they really need is kindness, constructive criticism, and an empathetic ear.

For the record, I am not pro-shoving drinks up your butt. Neither do I believe that it is something to joke about (there are far better butt jokes one can make use of at 13, like just straight-up farting).

But I also don’t believe in responding to a kid’s crude joke with such stern, nasty rhetoric. For in the final analysis — and this is important — kids have the right to be wrong. They have the right to be stupid. That’s what growing up is all about.

The right thing for Jackmond-Ellis to do would have been to take the kid aside and say something like, “Hi, sweetie. I know you’re with your friends having a good time, but could you please not speak that way in the store? It is offensive.”

Instead, she puts him on blast over Facebook. No bueno.

Now, I should probably reveal my personal stake in this. I am just a few years past my own teenage years, and back then I would have been just like that kid. That’s why Jackmond-Ellis’ post irked me so much.

I wouldn’t have joked about shoving a drink up my glutes, but I delighted in crude humor. Those years were tough. I was bullied a lot, and being a wiseass was a release.

One of my greatest hits from that period included:

“Ms. Banks, I need to go the bathroom. I’m feeling a WMD about to burst out of me.”

Another time, after I got into a fight with a peer, the principal had us try and find common ground and make up: “Well, Kyle, I like the Dodgers; you like the Dodgers. We’re both into video games, and we’re both white, eh? White power?!”

Then, a few years later, my English teacher made me do stand-up in front of the class: “Okay, pick up and turn to page 52 of ‘The Diary of Anne Frank.’ Now tell me, what was the theme of this section, as Anne stands her first night in the concentration camp? Anyone? Anyone? No one read the book? Did you bastards SparkNote the holocaust?”

And on the last day of school, he made me do more, but this time I was to give compliments to my fellow classmates:

“Oh, Britney, you’ve done well pitching for the high school team. You are a master with soft balls.”
It was crude and immature, but it was harmless, innocent fun — emotional medicine for getting through the day. And I didn’t end up a low-life either. I finish this column from the UCLA library as a senior here, currently with high honors.

So my message to the 13-year-old comic who started all the controversy is simple. Kid, joking about shoving a drink up your rear is a little weird, let’s be honest. Tone it down a bit. You want to make people laugh, that’s true, but you also want to get dates.

At the same time, I will say, as a fellow wiseass, joking about butts is a good subject; just don’t get into what you want to shove up there. I, personally, like to joke about my lack of one.

Life’s a learning process, and at 13, you still have a lot more growing to do. Take pride in that fact, keep making people laugh, and drown out those who will shame you for being a flower in bloom.

That doesn’t mean don’t accept criticism, but only listen to the folks who speak to you with compassion, wisdom, and true empathy. You and every other child on God’s green earth deserve nothing less.

Laina McFerren, Eric Stroh Named 2017 Man, Woman of Year

| Community | May 12, 2017

The final winners of the 2017 Woman and Man of the Year awards were announced last week at an annual recognition dinner held at the Hyatt Regency in Valencia.

Laina McFerren and Eric Stroh were announced as this year’s winners and will each receive $1,000 to donate to the non-profit organization of their choice. A total of 16 women and 12 men were nominated by local non-profit groups; McFerren was nominated by SCV Child & Family Center and Stroh represented Carousel Ranch. The event was chaired by Jim Lentini, 2016 Man of the Year, and Lois Bauccio, 2016 Woman of the Year, and the winners were selected by a committee of former winners.

McFerren, founder and co-owner of Wolf Creek Restaurant & Brewing Company, has volunteered for the Child & Family Center Foundation for 12 years. She has served on the organization’s board of directors for 12 years and chaired the board from 2012 to 2013. She served on the Child & Family Center Executive Committee for 10 years and worked on the non-profit’s Taste of the Town for 19 years — three years as co-chair, 12 years on the committee and 19 years as an exhibitor. She also has served on the Guardians of Hope Committee for one year and the Kid Expo Committee for nine years. She also has served on the Santa Clarita Jazz Festival Committee for three years.

Stroh, who is vice president of Santa Clarita Concrete, has volunteered for Carousel Ranch for over 11 years, serving as president and vice president during that time. He also served as creator and chair of the How the West Was Won Trap Shoot.

The final winners were chosen based on overall volunteer effort, years of service, impact on and commitment to the nominating organization. The committee looked at the impact the nominee has made on the nominating organization and the community, and other contributions made by the nominee that should be considered in the selection. Those contributions can include special personal effort, in-kind or intangible contributions, and outstanding leadership. This year’s honorees will now become chairs of the committee which will organize the 2018 event.

Other nominees for this year’s award, chosen by their non-profits for outstanding service and leadership, include:

Mary Ann Bennett, SRD Straightening Reins Foundation; Jane Bettencourt-Soto, Forged by Fire Foundation; Ann-Marie Bjorkman, SCV Boys and Girls Club; Marianne Cederlind, Carousel Ranch; Tami Edwards, Rotary Club of SCV; Diane Green, SCV Disaster Coalition, Sandra Ann Hardy, Girl Scouts of Greater LA; Tracy Hauser, SCV Senior Center; Pam Ingram, Soroptimist International of Greater SCV; Janine Jones, American Cancer Society; Gloria Mercado-Fortine, Samuel Dixon Family Health Centers; Janice Murray, Circle of Hope; Susan Reynolds, Domestic Violence Center and Boy Scouts; Christine Sarro Sexton, Zonta Club of SCV; and Doris Marie Zimmer, College of the Canyons Foundation.

Man of the Year Nominees included Alan Ferdman, Samuel Dixon Family Health Centers; Tom Hough, Boy Scouts of America; Taylor Kellstrom, Circle of Hope and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles; Jonathan Kraut, Domestic Violence Center; Nick Lentini, Child & Family Center and Rotary Club of SCV; Randy Moberg, College of the Canyons Foundation; Bruce Munster, SRD Straightening Reins Foundation; Kirk Nelson, American Red Cross; Todd Stevens, SCV Senior Center; Chuck Strong, American Legion Hall; and Jim Ventress, SCV Boys and Girls Club.

Female Athlete – Melanie Abzun

| Sports | May 12, 2017

College of the Canyons sophomore center fielder Melanie Abzun played a key role in the Cougars’ 2-0 series sweep over Southwestern College in the opening round of the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Southern California Regional Playoffs last weekend. COC defeated the Jaguars 4-3 in game one and 10 -5 in the series finale, with Abzun finishing the series 3-for-7 with two home runs, four runs, three RBIs and two walks to help No. 9 seed Canyons advance to this weekend’s CCCAA Super Regional.

“Mel has been a great competitor all season long,” said COC head coach John Wissmath. “She continues to make solid plays in the outfield and impress us with her bat.”

COC will begin the weekend with a matchup vs. No. 1 Cypress College at 1 p.m. on Friday.

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