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Santa Clarita Gazette and Free Classifieds is a locally owned weekly publication. Each week you will find news, opinion, sports and more plus over 200 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
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Posts / Recent blog posts

Canyon Country Business Briefs

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 15, 2018

CITYWIDE FILM STATISTICS
In August, the City issued 51 film permits which contributed to 165 film days, generating an estimated economic impact of $4,435,500.
The following productions were filming in Canyon Country in August 2018.
Television Shows:
9-1-1 – Sand Canyon area home
Criminal Minds – Sable Ranch
Home Made Simple – Area home
NCIS – Sand Canyon area home
NCIS: Los Angeles – Rancho Deluxe
Station 19 – Sable Ranch
Unbelievable – SCV Pawn Brokers
You’re the Worst – Rancho Deluxe
Commercials:
Adidas – Mountasia Family Fun Center
Jeep – College of the Canyons
Nissan – Vacant lot
Walmart – Walmart
Internet/Web:
Built – Aliento Development, Bothwell Park
Real Bros of Simi Valley – Sand Canyon area home

CANYON COUNTRY COMMUNITY CENTER UPDATE
The project site is on the northeast corner of Soledad Canyon Road and Sierra Highway and is expected to begin construction in the spring of 2019. The City continues to work on completing the construction documents for this project and anticipates the project will go out to bid this fall. The Canyon Country Community Center is tentatively scheduled to open towards the end of 2020. The new center will replace the existing temporary community center located on Flying Tiger Drive, at Sierra Highway.

One of the final structures to be removed, the billboard at the corner of Soledad Canyon Road and Sierra Highway was recently dismantled. As a result, the project site now has a clean slate to begin the grading process. When complete, the new Canyon Country Community Center will hold classes, activities, programs and cultural prospects for youth and adults, as well as special community events and workshops that will provide opportunities for personal and professional development.

PUBLIC WORKS UPDATE
Caltrans started its nightly road closures along Sierra Highway, between Friendly Valley Parkway and Newhall Avenue, for re-pavement work on August 20. This work will run through mid-October. All work will be completed in the late evening through the early morning, and will clear out before heavy commuter traffic starts.

ARTS IN CANYON COUNTRY
The Vision of Gary Friedman
On display through October 5, 2018
FREE
Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Library
18601 Soledad Canyon Rd.
Santa Clarita, CA 91351
The solo art exhibit “The Vision of Gary Friedman” features several neo-impressionistic landscapes, cityscapes, and abstracts done in a unique, warm palette style. The award-winning painter and teacher has studied with the world’s top watercolor talents, has traveled extensively, and tutored and exhibited locally for the past several years.

Mr. Friedman was also the band director at Arroyo Seco Junior High School from 1976 to 2011. When not painting, traveling, or teaching, Gary plays music with the bluegrass band The Flaw and jazz with the Go Jazz Big Band and David Peter’s jazz combo.

UPCOMING EVENTS
Canyon Country Community Center

Flu Vaccine Clinic
This free event will provide flu vaccines at no charge to those who do not have health insurance, or whose healthcare provider does not offer flu vaccines.
Thursday, October 18
4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
FREE

Popcorn and a Movie Family Night (All Ages)
Bring your family and enjoy some popcorn while you watch the 25th Anniversary edition of “Hocus Pocus”!
Friday, October 19
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
FREE

Preschool Pumpkin Party
Join us for all things pumpkin! Celebrate the fall season with music, games, arts and crafts, and sensory activities. Make new friends at our Preschool Pumpkin Party! Children and parents are welcome to attend in costume.

Note: No pretend weapons or masks please. Ages 1-5 years old.
Monday, October 22
9:15 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.
FREE

Fall Carnival
A fun-filled family event of games, contests, crafts, and more! Reserve your spot today! Space is limited. Registration begins Mon., October 15.
Friday, November 2
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
FREE
Saturday, November 3
10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
FREE

Visit santa-clarita.com/CCCC or call (661) 290-2266 for more information and to view a complete list of activities happening at the Canyon Country Community Center.

SANTA CLARITA PUBLIC LIBRARY
Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Library

Monday, October 15
Monster Mash – Sewing Class
3:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Learn sewing basics while making a monster bookmark. This free program is for children in kindergarten through sixth grade. All supplies provided. Space is limited to available supplies.

Friday, October 19
Goosebumps & Ghosts Party
3:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Creepy crawlies, spine-tingling games, and spooky stories – you’ll be sure to get goosebumps! Kids, wear your costume but please leave masks at home. This free program is for children in kindergarten through sixth grade. Space is limited to supplies on hand.

Monday, October 29
Slime and Other Non-Newtonian Fluids
3:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Learn about and play with slime! Make your own slime to take home. This free program is for children in kindergarten through sixth grade. All materials provided. Space is limited to supplies on hand.

Please visit SantaClaritaLibrary.com for more information and to view a complete listing of activities happening at the Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Library.

Bad Boys and Girls

| Police Blotter | October 12, 2018

This week, a 35-year-old dispatcher from Frazier Park was arrested for battery, and a 32-year-old Chatsworth resident who works in retail was arrested for reckless driving.

A 53-year-old Uber driver from Studio City was arrested for identity theft. And a 52-year-old massage therapist from Newhall was arrested for sex penetration: force/etc.

A 19-year-old Canyon Country resident who works in customer service was brought up on charges of battery against a former spouse. Another 19-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident was charged with defacing property.

A 55-year-old dance instructor from Newhall was charged with battery.

DUIs with prior arrests include:

64-year-old nurse from Long Beach
27-year-old welder from Santa Clarita
22-year-old stocker from Saugus
23-year-old unemployed Valencia resident
41-year-old construction worker from Santa Clarita
28-year-old clerk from Canyon Country
27-year-old animal trainer from Lakewood
46-year-old unemployed Valencia resident
41-year-old construction worker from Santa Clarita
36-year-old unemployed Castaic resident
28-year-old unemployed Simi Valley resident
28-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident
30-year-old caregiver from Hollywood
21-year-old unemployed El Monte resident

Charges of possession of a controlled substance went to:

32-year-old unemployed Castaic resident
46-year-old mechanic from Canyon Country
43-year-old dental assistant from Canyon Country
29-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident
26-year-old unemployed Chatsworth resident
32-year-old caregiver from Palmdale
31-year-old field worker from Salinas
50-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita resident
52-year-old fisherman from Carpentaria
18-year-old unemployed Palmdale resident
31-year-old unemployed Stevenson Ranch resident
48-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident
29-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita resident
25-year-old driver from Stevenson Ranch

Volunteers Needed for 23rd Annual Santa Clarita Marathon

| Community | October 12, 2018

The City of Santa Clarita is seeking volunteers for the 2018 Santa Clarita Marathon, presented by Parkway Motorcars, which is scheduled to take place on November 3-4, 2018. The event, currently in its 23nd year, will include a 5K race, 10K race and Mayor’s Walk on Saturday, November 3, followed by a Half Marathon and Marathon on Sunday, November 4. Also on Saturday will be an all-new Kids Fitness Challenge, presented by Kaiser Permanente.

The weekend will begin on Friday, November 2 at the Santa Clarita Health and Fitness Expo, presented by Boston Scientific. While the expo officially opens to the public on Saturday, runners can pick up their bibs and their official race shirt beginning Friday, from 4 to 9 p.m. The expo will be held in the northern parking lot at the Westfield Valencia Town Center, near Chick-Fil-A. At the expo visitors can connect with various health and fitness vendors on Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

On Saturday, November 3, runners from near and far will take to the streets of Santa Clarita for the 5K race and the new 10K race, presented by Boston Scientific, as well as the Mayor’s Walk, presented by Henry Mayo Fitness and Health. The next morning, runners will compete in either the Marathon or Half Marathon, presented by Parkway Motorcars.

During the expo on Saturday, parents will be able to purchase an all-day pass for their child to participate in the new Kids Fitness Challenge, presented by Kaiser Permanente. The Kids Challenge is an inflatable obstacle course for children to navigate. An all-day pass is $10 per child and free T-shirts will be distributed with the first 300 Kids Fitness Challenge passes sold. Passes may be purchased at the expo site, beginning at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 3.

Online registration for races is ongoing until Sunday, October 28, while in-person registration will be available during the Health and Fitness Expo only. Runners will not be able to register the morning of any race.

The City of Santa Clarita is seeking volunteers for both race days, and is in need of water station workers, course monitors to direct runners along the course and zone captains to oversee course monitors. The deadline to register as a volunteer is Sunday, October 21. To learn more about the responsibilities of each position and to register as a volunteer, visit SantaClaritaVolunteers.com.

The public is encouraged to cheer on runners at various points along the course both days. Street closures and times will be announced once they are confirmed. In the meantime, Santa Clarita residents can familiarize themselves with course maps online. For questions regarding volunteering, please call (661) 250-3708 or email volunteers@santa-clarita.com. To learn more about the Santa Clarita Marathon and register for a race, visit SCMarathon.org.

When We Officially Abandon Civil Discourse

| Opinion | October 12, 2018

by Christine Flowers

Hoping that a child will be raped is the vilest thought that can be formed in the civilized brain. There is no “larger picture,” no justification, no explanatory context. Unfortunately, it’s no longer out of bounds in social discourse.

Recently, I came across a public posting on Facebook, which means the author wanted the world to have access to her thoughts. It was a jeremiad against Donald Trump, which is unexceptional these days, since he seems to turn certain people into human volcanoes who spew rivers of hateful prose. I avoid them when I see them scroll through my Facebook news feed.

But this one caught my attention because I love children, spend a lot of time with them, and used to teach them. I also represent them in immigration court, like the little girl whose hand I held as she told the judge the other day that she was from Honduras, and that she was 5, and that pink was her favorite color.

So when I saw these words, I froze:

“Time to burn everything to the [expletive] ground, when it comes to this vile, non-human garbage who by stealing and cheating ended up in the White House. Are we going to take as any kind of truth an ‘investigation’ that isn’t one? Are we going to take his a–hole supporters who say ‘lock her up’ to Dr. Ford? I’m a good and nice person, a peace-loving person but let every one of them and their sons and daughters get raped, accosted by one of those ‘boys will be boys.’ “

It went on. I reported the post to Facebook, and as of this writing, it’s still there. That’s Mark Zuckerberg’s problem now, because I’ve blocked the poster. But it was important for me to not simply shake my head as I used to do and move on, narrowing my group of friends to those with whom I could share photos of my sweet black Labs and funny anecdotes from my family along with political essays and ruminations. I’ve resigned myself, ruefully, to the realization that this political and social climate is choosing for me, without my permission, the comfortable echo chamber, where even though I hear kindred thoughts, I miss some of the kindred spirits who didn’t share them. In other words, I am becoming increasingly isolated from liberal ideas because it is much harder these days to have a civil conversation.

And yet I have very good, very decent, liberal friends, like Robin and Donna, Jennie and David, John and Victor, who would never in a million years write about the rape of children in the same breath as they wish death on a president they can’t stand. They make me realize that this is not a partisan disease, even though many of my conservative friends urge me to see “the other side” as the enemy.

I have to admit that these past two weeks, the “other side” has been Dixie to my Union, the Axis powers to my Allies, guillotine-wielding Jacobins to my aristocracy. The Democrats, for whom I have vowed to never again cast a vote, have morphed into a caricature of their former selves in their duplicitous crusade to destroy a man and his reputation. I see nothing there that reminds me of the party I belonged to for 37 years. But that is political, and I understand that there are just as many Democrats and liberals who read my words defending Brett Kavanaugh last week and felt the same revulsion for me that I feel for the despicable assault on the judge.

I would sincerely hope that even they, disgusted with our president and with the people he has chosen to represent him in the cabinet and now on the court, would recoil from the suggestion that my hypothetical children and the children of Kavanaugh supporters should be raped.

You might say that this is anger speaking, and of course it is. But the appropriate place for that anger to burn is in the deep and quiet recesses of the mind, hidden from view. That we have now reached the point that assaulted children are considered appropriate conversational tender sterilizes the soul and induces a nausea that can’t be eliminated by blocking the person who dares to write the words.

And not even the confirmation of a Supreme Court justice will make it better.

Copyright 2018 Christine Flowers. Flowers is an attorney and a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, and can be reached at cflowers1961@gmail.com.

It’s a Dog’s Life

| Community | October 11, 2018

by Harry Parmenter

It’s been nearly three weeks since Charlie died and the void he left just seems to widen, the loss burnished by time. Charlie was our family dog, a small, fierce, loving and protective mix of Schipperke, Chihuahua and mutt. Black coat sprayed with white triangles across his throat and chest, Charlie joined us 13 years ago, shortly after we married New Year’s Day 2005. It was the beginning of the blended family experiment, both of us divorced with three kids each in tow, more Wild Bunch than Brady Bunch.

After purchasing a six bedroom, three bathroom house in Canyon Country a year prior, the rocky road to integration commenced in earnest. Four girls, two boys, aged nine to nineteen, all rolled into a house of hormones and emotions sweet and salty; the kids sometimes weekend visitors, sometimes permanent residents, lots of attitudes and adjustments for all involved, including my wife and I. Getting a dog was one unanimously popular decision.

We piled into a pair of vehicles one crisp Saturday morning, almost all the brood in tow, and sailed down the 126 and up a long dirt road somewhere in Santa Paula. Eventually we made our way to a worn, sprawling compound, a house, a barn and a couple of shacks and other small structures, the cacophony of yapping canines greeting us as we disembarked.

I can’t recall if it was four or five of the kids there with us, but I know somebody was missing. I do know the idea was not only to get a beloved pet to unite our incipient clan, but to do it especially for my 15-year-old daughter, a middle child who was struggling. Regardless, everyone was excited. There must have been at least 50 dogs at the place, some running free, others confined to half a dozen coops. A frazzled woman with brown hair, jeans and a red and black plaid shirt slammed open a screen door at the house, her voice whipping through the winter air.

“You the ones who called?”

“This morning, yes,” said my wife. “Raquel?”

“Right! Welcome!” She held the door open and a huge brown Doberman bolted out of the house past her. “Brutus!” She bellowed as the beast headed straight towards us. “BRUTUS!” My ten year old son coiled behind me as the dog neared, and I flashed on Sherlock Holmes battling the hound of the Baskervilles on a foggy moor. “BRUTUS!!!”

The dog approached and, smelling fear, bounded up into my chest, his huge frame pushing me back, excited eyes and a square, panting snout as big as a baseball mitt. The tail wagged furiously.

“Don’t worry, he doesn’t bite,” shouted Raquel as a telephone rang inside the house. Just as fast as he’d made his introduction Brutus was gone, drawn by a pair of German Shepherds loping across the parking lot. My son released his grip on my jacket.

“Help yourself, look around,” said Raquel. “I gotta grab this.” She disappeared back into the house and the phone stopped ringing. We wandered around for a while, the smell of dogs, pigs, horses and everything that goes with them wafting through the air.

We eventually homed in on a small chicken coop, padlocked, two sleeping Spaniels and a little black dog hovering in the back behind a water bowl. At first, he ignored our entreaties, and then gradually inched towards us. His eyes were filled with cautious uncertainty, his ears pulled back, but finally he put his face up to the mesh, a look of hope, fear and adoration. I had seen a similar expression on my daughter’s face when I’d picked her up at her mother’s house the night before.

“Dad, he likes us!” she cried.

Raquel told us he was somewhere between three and five years old, abused, abandoned. His name: Zeppo, just like the fourth Marx Brother. That was all I needed to hear. We took him home and rechristened him Charlie. I had never heard of a Schipperke until then—a small, Belgian dog originated in the 16th century: “Fearless, agile, independent, confident, faithful.” Talk about spot on.

Fearless: he went right at a coyote in our backyard one summer night and the creature, thrice his size, bolted. True story. Agile: he’d jump up onto the kitchen table after we left and sleep with one eye open—ever wary of intruders–only to be later seen leaping off when you pulled back into the driveway, filling the air with a big bark belying his size, then twirling in fervent circles once you unlocked the door, his tail a blur, the eyes no longer uncertain but gleaming, ecstatic. Curious: always up for a car ride or a neighborhood sniff. Independent: “Charlie, GET IN THE HOUSE!” became a household mantra. Confident: Trotting outside, marking territory—an unfortunate habit he shared with a certain living room couch—I can still see him furiously wiping his back feet on the grass, emphatically making a point I never quite grasped.

And like all dogs, of course, faithful. Charlie certainly was, an endless shadow, never wanting to be away from the action, the family, not to mention the food. Through the years, the good and the bad, the kids growing into adults, he was always there to inject happiness and good energy, be it a mundane, tense or celebratory moment. He was the black and white thread of our blended family, weaving through it all as one child after another grew up and left the nest.

In recent years he developed a heart murmur and other complications. We paid five or six bucks a day in doggie rx but it didn’t keep him from developing a dry, deep cough that wracked his little body for minutes at a time. It didn’t faze him; the tail wagged on.

One day I came home and my wife and youngest stepdaughter, who’d become the closest to Charlie of the six kids, gave me the bad news. It wasn’t a surprise but it was still a shock. He had gone out the dog door in the middle of the night like he had a thousand times before but this time died right there, eyes wide open. It was painful for us to realize that he’d been alone, not held by one of us in his final moments like he should have been, his soft neck resting in a friendly lap on the couch as it had so many times before. My wife went out of town last weekend and the house felt even emptier, soundless, her absence underscoring Charlie’s and his hard charging personality, which enlivened our home for so long. He was always there, watching, trailing, sleeping, barking, living … until he wasn’t. Somewhere I know he is furiously wiping his back paws on celestial turf and marking his territory, twirling in circles waiting for the loving members of his blended family to join him.

The Constitution and the Rule of Law Got a Reprieve

| Opinion | October 11, 2018

by Stephen Smith

The Honorable Justice of the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh. The Honorable Justice of the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh. The Honorable Justice of the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh. Those nine words bring me such joy. Let me say it once again; the Honorable Justice of the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh. Nine words, because there are now nine seated Justices of the Supreme Court. The set is complete, and now the unfortunate situation of ties being referred to the appellate courts is over. Joyful, because the court is now more likely to follow the rule of law and not the rule of man. The Constitution, and the rule of law, which was ignored by Democrats and found missing by the Republicans in the Confirmation Hearings, got a reprieve.

This time the politics of slander, intimidation, creating divisions based on race, class and gender executed by the Democrats did not work. Somehow the usually weak Republicans cast off their cloaks of the Cowardly Lion and grew a p… Oops, I mean the Wizard of the Tweets gave them a tweet and they found their courage. Even Senator Lindsey Graham metamorphosized into an outraged tiger.

If ever a wonderful Wiz there was, the Wizard of Tweets is one because, because, because, because, because, because! Because of the wonderful things he does.
Near the end of the story, the Great and Mighty Oz was able to grant the Scarecrow, the Tinman and the Cowardly Lion the virtues they desired by simply reminding them that they already had the wisdom, heart and courage they sought all along. Both the Great and Mighty Wizard of Oz and the Wizard of Make America Great Again are and were flawed human beings. They have been able to get past the fire, smoke and noise and inspire people to be the better selves that they seemed to have forgotten.

Finding our National wisdom, heart and courage is what we need to bring us back to the place and time that left Dorothy homesick for Kansas. Our National wisdom is deeply rooted in our founding documents and the writings that inspired them. I am a big advocate for the Ten Commandments. Our founders went further by advocating Natural Law, which was given to us by our Creator. The Declaration of Independence establishes that we have rights such as Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness, which have been given to us by God with the express understanding that they are unalienable and are never to be taken away by men. With a deep understanding that man is flawed, our founders established a form of government that had separation of powers and a bicameral legislature to prevent consolidation of power by despots. To protect us from ourselves, it is essential our Supreme Court Justices must follow the law as it is written and the Constitution as it was intended. Perhaps the greatest danger the Republic faces today is Justices who interpret the law as they wish it would be, thus usurping the roles of the Legislature and the Executive branches of government. Democrats are supporting judicial appointments who become dictators for life (commonly referred to as legislating from the bench) and who would destroy the separation of powers.

The biggest star and clear-headed summary of the Kavanaugh confirmation was when Senator Susan Collins laid out the case for her vote to confirm. She has been a longtime supporter for women’s rights and her votes have been not viewed as conservative. It was a remarkable demonstration of American Civics at its best. Especially if you disagreed with the final confirmation, it is well worth your time to view it on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LJRdMh1XhAY.

Many have angrily argued that Judge Kavanaugh would overturn Roe vs. Wade based on an opinion regarding a rape victim. His argument was not based on “right to life,” rather, it was about proper jurisdiction between state and federal government. He followed the Constitution as best he understood it. He wrote the book on honoring precedent. The accusations against him came without any, I repeat, any credible corroborating testimony or evidence. Even the witnesses that Ms. Ford identified denied any knowledge of the event she described. When Justice Brett Kavanaugh strongly protested the multiple vile and career destroying accusations made against him, the Democrats claimed that reaction proved he was unworthy of being a Judge. I think it proves, unlike the leftist-progressive Democrats beliefs, that he was human. That is a good thing. The tactics of the Democrats was not a search for truth or providing proper consideration for “Advice and Consent.” Theirs was choosing a path of personal destruction without consideration of the accused, the accuser and their oath to protect and defend the Constitution. This gauntlet may have made the new Justice even more aware of the need to follow the rule of law rather than the emotions of angry men (persons).

Regarding those who opposed the confirmation of (just got to say it again) The Honorable Justice of the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh. They demonstrated in the confirmation hearings that the veil has been lifted from our elected Democrats. Our National wisdom is an anathema to these angry, evil, leftist-progressives who desire to take power away from the individual, give it to the ruling elite and control the masses by encouraging dissension between women and men, black and white and the successful vs. those who struggle. They are planting the seeds for civil war. Our founding wisdom has been rejected and their tactics are evil. This November, vote for leftist-progressive Democrats at your and your children’s peril.

Passport Services Available at Newhall Library

| Community | October 11, 2018

On Wednesday, October 3, members of the Santa Clarita City Council visited the new Passport Acceptance Facility, located on the second floor of the Old Town Newhall Library. The new facility offers passport services to library customers by appointment.

“The Santa Clarita Public Library, has what you need for where you’re going – and now that includes passport services,” said Mayor Laurene Weste during her visit.

According to the U.S. Department of State, nearly 20 million passport books and cards will be issued this year in the United States alone. “Unfortunately, high demands can translate to long wait times. That is why we are excited to be able to offer this convenient service at your local library,” added the Mayor.

The new facility offers the following services:
First-time passports
Passport renewals, for passports issued before the applicant was 16 years of age
Renewals for expired passports, issued more than 15 years ago
Replacements for lost, stolen or damaged passports
Passport photos

For facility dates and hours, fee information or to schedule an appointment, visit the Passport Services website at SantaClaritaLibrary.com/Passport-Services.com. The Old Town Newhall Library is located at 24500 Main Street.

To learn more about the management of the service, contact Library Administrator Gina Roberson at (661) 799-6105, or at groberson@santa-clarita.com.

Our Representatives’ Values, Then and Now

| Opinion | October 11, 2018

by Richard Hood

Near the end of the Cold War, Romanian dictator Ceausescu, like other atheist tyrants around the world, imprisoned and tortured Christians, including pastors and priests. One was Father Calciu, whose hands were broken to keep him from praying. I wrote my Republican congressman John Rousselot, who did two things: he inquired of our State Department to see what pressure could be applied to Romania, and he contacted President Reagan, keeping me informed each step of the way with calls and State Department fax responses because, I suppose, I was an American citizen he served.

Because Romania had a favored trading status with the U.S. that it wanted to keep, not only the release of Father Calciu was obtained, he came to America to live out his years, like Pastor Richard Wurmbrand of “Tortured for Christ” fame before him. The entire episode took only a few months from my first snail mail typed letter – the kind that our civic classes teachers said our representatives consider as counting for thousands of like opinions. A few months, from initial letter to release and resettlement. Let’s compare that with our current congressman’s response.

Mrs. Bibi has been in prison in Pakistan for over nine years. She was accused of blasphemy because she refused to dishonor Christ in front of her taunting Muslim coworkers. This law is often used against Pakistan’s Christian minority out of hatred of their minority religious belief and to obtain their land and property, and a conviction carries with it the death penalty. Not being able to determine whether Pakistan has a similar preferred trading status with the U.S. that could be used as a pressure point, I called several different people at our State Department (that on paper works for us, although you may have to go all the way back to parchment paper) and after never receiving a return call, I wrote a snail mail letter (worth thousands of requests) to our current Congressman, requesting he find out and also contact the President as was tried successfully before. After not hearing back after an entire month, I called his office. They told me to call another of his offices, which in turn told me to call the original office. I did, and explained everything above, and also told them to tell our congressman that he had one more month to have someone get back to me, as I would submit a letter to his community either of praise or censure.

Being an election year, you would think he would care, but it’s been over two months, and none of my calls have been returned, or letter responded to. Mrs. Bibi is still separated from her family, still under a fatwa, as are her lawyers and any judge that rules to justly drop charges. Before you say, “What do I care? This isn’t my concern,” let me remind you that if you ever do have your own concern, “no response” will not be the response you’ll expect you’ve been paying for. Remember – Congress isn’t even required to pay into social security, and they receive a subsidy for their Obamacare coverage – they voted themselves better deals that we have to pay for. Has our congressman tried to rescind even these injustices?

I had to ask myself whether a letter such as this could result in someone getting elected that was closer politically to the beliefs of communist Ceausescu. The Democrats seem increasingly enchanted by communism’s evil near twin, socialism. Instead of being boiled slowly and unknowingly like a frog, perhaps faster acting pain might make people aware enough to recognize the danger of continuing with the swamp, much like the left’s recent presidency helped result, for better or worse, in the Trump presidency.
George Washington had to be begged to run a second time, and that should have set the standard. To prevent the swamp, political service should be like jury duty – do what’s right, serve, get in and get out. Don’t make it a life career. But the political machines pick the candidates (just try running as a major party candidate on your own), and the machines love incumbents. If our congressman loses, it won’t be on me, or you, it will be on our congressman himself, and the machine that could have picked someone else. You would also think at least his staff would have cared enough to respond for humanitarian reasons as well as their continued employment. Some of his staff are great. It’s a mystery.

I anticipate someone mentioning that Mrs. Bibi is not an American citizen. Rightly or not, America has a history of defending others with shared values of liberty. For instance, the 58,000 Americans killed defending South Vietnam. While the leftists want open borders that will flood our country with those who may not share American values, and rather, desire only to share our affluence, Mrs. Bibi, for refusing to deny the same Lord worshipped by most Americans, and for the American values of freedoms of speech and religion, is in a third world dungeon. Her values are more American than someone with an American government paycheck that is too busy to care, and that’s a shame.

If you’d like to help Mrs. Bibi or learn more, please visit www.persecution.com, and/or the ACLJ. Also, you could contact the White House, or our Congressman’s office, and write in to this paper to let us all know the response you get. (Or don’t get.)

Letters

| Opinion | October 11, 2018

How sickening to see the leftist disgrace to America, David Barlavi actually run for school board. He calls Republicans facists (he should only look in the mirror to see one). He lies about the make-up of the SCV saying they have 65% liberals to 35% Conservatives, lies and gives the middle finger to President Trump. What else does he do in private? If he actually wants to fight facism in this Country, he should look at his own leftist base. The ones who don’t allow freedom of speech at college campuses, harass and attack any one they don’t believe in (which means the people they attack are good and decent folks speaking the truth), harass Conservative politicians and others on their home property and in public places, destroy statues of good and great Americans (they always get away with that). That is if Barlavi was a decent and humane person.
-Robert

I gotta make a point of reading the Gazette cover to cover from now on. For as much time as I waste on National politics, your paper is critical if we want to be informed on local level issues, which are actually much more relevant.

– Corey

Los Angeles Dodgers and Milwaukee Brewers Set to Clash in NLCS

| Sports | October 11, 2018

by Diego Marquez

With both teams wrapping up their series victories over the Atlanta Braves and the Colorado Rockies, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Milwaukee Brewers are set for a collision course to meet in the National League Championship Series (NLCS) which is set to begin Friday in Milwaukee. The Dodgers head to their third straight NLCS after dispatching the Braves with their starting pitching, who posted two shutouts win and a 2.06 ERA for the series, and clutch hitting situations. The Brewers took care of the Rockies with their bullpen as the starters only pitched a combined 12 2/3 innings, and as a whole, the rotation was able to hold the Rockies scoreless in 27-of-28 innings.

The Dodgers and Brewers met seven times during the regular season, with Los Angeles taking four of the seven matchups. The two franchises have never met in the postseason and will look to make the NLCS series one for the books. Finishing the season strong, both teams ended the season on a positive note, as both team trailed their respective divisions entering the final two months of the season. Milwaukee climbed back and posted the National League’s best mark of 20-7 while Los Angeles grabbed the second spot in the league posting a 19-9 record to round out the season.

The proposed starter for the Brewers will be Jhoulys Chacin, after making a league high of 35 starts this past season averaging just 5.5 inning per outing. Using an elite bullpen, the Brewers managed to finish with a 3.47 ERA and a 18.8 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Josh Hader, Jeremy Jeffress, Joakim Soria and Corey Knebel all contributed to these eye-popping stats for the opposing team.

If the Dodgers want to win, they need to hit early and often against Milwaukee’s starting rotation before the bullpen gets going. Los Angeles led the league in walk percentage, walking 10.2 out of 100 percent of the time. The Dodgers need to take advantage of all they can because this series looks to be the toughest matchup, as the Brewers won the most games in the National League this season, they have a potential NL MVP candidate in Christian Yelich and not to mention the stud bullpen rotation that has carried them to many of the victories in the 2018 season.

Vertical Merlot Tasting

| Entertainment | October 11, 2018

by Beth Heiserman, Reyes Winery

This coming Saturday, October 13, Reyes Winery will be hosting a Merlot Vertical. Attendees will get to pair our award-winning Merlot with a tasty treat, along with education about Merlot and our wines. I will be pouring from the 2009 vintage through the 2012, in addition to the newly released 2013, the unreleased 2015 and finishing with the 2015 Rose of Merlot.

The 2009 vintage has sold out of the tasting room, but I saved two cases for this special day. It has won a gold medal at the 2011 Long Beach Grand Cru Wine Competition, a Silver medal at the 2011 Los Angeles International Wine Competition and received 86 points from the Wine Enthusiast Magazine (March 2018 Edition). Blueberries, Cocoa and a hint of mint round out the flavors of this exceptional fruit-forward varietal. It pairs with a Porterhouse steak with a wild mushroom demi-glace sauce, mushroom brie, or blueberry cheesecake.

Each wine can pair with a cheese, a savory dish and a dessert. The 2010 vintage has amazing notes of black cherries, blueberries and cinnamon. Pumpkin spice pairs perfectly with this smooth estate Merlot. Also, I will be featuring a very small batch of “unfiltered” 2011 Renaissance by Reyes Merlot. It matches with espresso dishes like coffee-crusted tri tip, or a scrumptious mocha Merlot cake with an espresso mascarpone frosting.

The 2012 and 2013 vintages are a bit more tannic compared to previous years. Water wasn’t as abundant; therefore, the wine is a bit bolder. 2015 Merlot has already won a gold medal and 91 points in the 2018 Toast of the Coast Competition. This estate Merlot has bold aromas of plum, blackberry and notes of toasted oak, followed by juicy flavors of Satsuma plums with a hint of spice rounding out the finish. Supple, velvety tannins and lush fruit make this wine an ideal match for grilled pork chops, Port Salut cheese or roasted plums and vanilla ice cream.

Lastly, to finish the vertical tasting, I will be pouring the 2016 Merlot of Rose. It received 83 points from the Wine Enthusiast Magazine (December 2017 Edition). This special wine is a skin-contact Rose Merlot and Viognier. It has light tannins and medium acidity. It’s bursting with young, vibrant fruit. It has notes of blueberries, anise, peach and orange peel, which compliment a slight sweetness for perfect balance. Upside peach cake and brie cheese with a blueberry honey drizzle make a great accompaniment.

All Wines get a holiday … and Merlot gets a month! Come celebrate Merlot Month with our Merlot Vertical! Social media has a hashtag for it, #MerlotMe. Join the movement and drink lots of Reyes Winery Merlot. Take a photo of you, your wine and your wine glass; #MerlotMe and #ReyesWinery.

Hart Regiment Hosts the 35th Rampage

| Entertainment | October 11, 2018

Rampage is coming to town on November 3. This year marks the 35th year that the Hart Regiment from William S. Hart High School will be hosting the event.

The Regiment is composed of the top Marching Band and Color Guard teams that have been recognized for excellent musicianship and showmanship throughout the years. In fact, under the direction of Band Director Anthony Bailey, the Regiment has won the SCSBOA (Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association) state championship in its category 13 times since 2002. This achievement is unmatched by any other. On and off the field, the students are an example of hard work, dedication, determination and teamwork.

Rampage is one of the largest Marching Band and Field Show Tournaments that is a part of the SCSBOA. It typically attracts 35 marching band and color guard teams from all over Southern California who come to compete and put on their best performances.

Being held at the College of the Canyons Cougar Stadium provides seating for the 5,000-6,000 friends and families who come to support their teams, as well as enjoy all the other performances. All of the local Santa Clarita High Schools are anticipated to be present at Rampage this year.

It begins approximately at 10 a.m. and lasts until 9 p.m., ending with a mass drum line and awards ceremony. Cougar Stadium is located at 26455 Rockwell Canyon, Valencia. Parking is free and tickets can be purchased at the gate, $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and students and children under 5 are always free. There will be refreshments as well as opportunities to buy Rampage products and raffle tickets for great prizes and gifts.

Rampage is the Hart Regiments top fundraiser, so come out and support the program and enjoy a great day filled with great music and wonderful entertainment.

For further information or to make a donation, check out the Hart Regiment Facebook Page, visit www.hartregiment.com, email them at rampagechair@gmail.com, or call (661) 347-8461.

Use Your Own Superpower to Increase Self-Worth

| Community | October 11, 2018

A workshop, hosted by Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley, will help participants “transform challenges into power & catapult to success; resolve problems with ease and confidence and find gifts in baffling situations.” This free LifeForward workshop is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday, October 20, at Savia Community Center, located at 23780 Newhall Ave in Newhall. Individuals will be able to learn how to increase their feelings of self-worth, believe in themselves and feel good.

Expert Laura Cazares will share her knowledge with the audience as she presents ways to feel good and empowered by using your own inner superpower. Laura is a certified Life Mastery Consultant and DreamBuilder coach. Since 1986, she has worked with people to unleash their inner hero and transform obstacles into powerful forces for their success.

Participants are not required to register in advance, however, free childcare is available through Single Mothers Outreach (SMO) and the children must be registered at least one week in advance by calling the organization at 661-288-0117. Spanish translation can also be provided upon request. The topic presented will be empowering and uplifting.

Previous workshops in the series have helped women and attendees learn how to improve relationships and communicate more effectively, select career options, pursue meaningful employment, work on goal setting and time management, deal with anger management, set budgets and file taxes, maintain healthy eating and exercise habits, and provide advice before, during and after a divorce. Workshops are designed to help participants believe in their unlimited power and potential, build the skills necessary to succeed, and be the powerful women they are meant to be. All are welcome.

Zonta offers nine free LifeForward workshops on a monthly basis (with the exception of June, July and December), in collaboration with Single Mothers Outreach, Domestic Violence Center, Returning Women Veterans and Veterans’ Wives, and the Los Angeles County Department of Child & Family Services serving foster mothers.

Workshops are organized by topics developed from surveys showing expressed interest and needs. Flyers and a schedule of upcoming workshops are posted on www.scvzonta.org for women who are interested in a particular topic. Pre-registration is not required for those who simply wish to attend a workshop, but those who wish to hold a space for the more popular workshops or obtain further information on the upcoming workshop can call 661-288-0117.

Respect

| Opinion | October 11, 2018

by William Tozzi

Too many so-called “americans” (capitalization intentionally omitted) have chosen not to give any respect for the leader of their country—the President. Some of these “Americans,” including elected officials, show Our President blatant discourtesy, express personal hatred, and display rudeness. Any normal person looks at these so-called “americans” as lost souls who don’t realize how ridiculous they look with their own self-aggrandizement, half-truths and bias, attacking anyone who disagrees with them. That’s their prerogative, not caring how absurd they make our country appear to the rest of the world.

I don’t blame them; I believe they were indoctrinated, more like brainwashed, by liberal educators who taught lawlessness, revolution, and hatred as a way of life without any mention of honesty, respect, kindness and love.

They proclaim, in lock-step with each other, “He hasn’t earned my respect!” Well, I question if their disrespectfulness and profane language will earn my respect? Of course not! Yet, I still acknowledge their right for a courteous and rational discussion, without sinking to their level of incivility. Don’t they realize it’s time to acknowledge the election results?

We accepted the results of the last two elections. We acknowledged and showed respect to the elected leader of the country. Even though we did that, many of us were disappointed at the lack of accomplishment of his administration.

Today’s detractors have no idea their negative and radical actions, not the President’s, are tearing our nation apart at the seams. And those seams are becoming more irreparable every day. One day there will be no seams at all, and our country will fall apart, resulting in chaos and anarchy. We will no longer be a leader in the world, but be primed for civil conflict or be an easy target for takeover by a foreign power. Sound untrue, outlandish, insane? Well, if there is no change, we are definitely headed down that road, or even a worse path.

I fear there aren’t enough Real Americans standing-up for the trait that made America the great country it used to be and what it can be. That trait is respect for our fellow citizens. You could add a little kindness, too.

Live Music

| Entertainment | October 11, 2018

Oct 12, Fri
6–9pm Wolf Creek Brewery Right Side Up Classic rock
7–10pm Wm S Hart Park Magnolia Drawl band Country
7–10pm Route 66 Classic Grill Double Play Acoustic duo
7–10:30p Vincenzo’s Newhall Cover Charge band Rock (no cover)
8–11pm Wine 661 Bill Cinque & Dave B Classic covers
8–12m Vincent Hill Station Runaway Train on patio Country rock
8–12m Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Steve Jones Acoustic blues
9–11p The Local (Valencia) Max Esparazza Live music
9–12m Salt Creek Grille Sean Hughes Covers & orig
9–1pm Doc’s Inn Frankly Speaking Rock covers
———————————————————————————————————————–
Oct 13, Sat
1–7pm Amer Legion Newhall Battle of the Blues Bands – 8 bands!
6–10p Vincent Hill Station Lance Allyn Classic covers
7–10m Backyard Grub n Brews Mod-U-Lates Classic rock
8–11pm Wine 661 All Access band Rock covers
8–12m VFW 6885 Morgan Ridge Country
9–12m Salt Creek Grille Lawrence Tamez Saxy music
9–1a Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Bad Traffic band Rock
————————————————————————————————————————
Oct 14, Sun
10a–2p Saugus Swap meet Lee & the Real Deal Live music
1–5pm Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Natalie Wattre Folk rock
3–7pm Vincent Hill Moldy Marvin’s open mic Various
5–8pm Salt Creek Grille G – 3 Classic rock
5–9pm VFW 6885 Big Coyote Country
———————————————————————————————————————–
Oct 16, Tues
6–8:30p Wolf Creek Brewery Community Pints night Dos Locos
7–10p Bergie’s steakhouse Dallas Hodge band Blues mix
Oct 17, Wed
6–10pm Route 66 Classic Grill Bike Night & Live Music various
7–9pm Alchemy Dole-Humphries Folk rk & orig
7–9pm Paseo Club Lance Allyn Classic covers
Oct 18, Thur
7–10pm Brewery Draconum SRBQ Blues mix
7–10pm Bergie’s steakhouse Stunt Road Blues CR mix
———————————————————————————————————————–

Athletes of the Week

| Sports | October 11, 2018

Daniel Waters has competed in the Special Olympics for 16 years. He has played basketball, floor hockey, bocce ball, and golf. Daniel favors bowling (tournament high of 189), as well as track and field, but basketball is his favorite sport.

Special Olympics means great friends and choice coaches. His best memory of Special Olympics is receiving the gold medal at the Spirit Games that are held every May in SCV. Daniel is a super team supporter. “We can beat these guys!” said Waters. “Go Sharks!”

 

Karissa Ganih is an energetic and enthusiastic Special Olympics athlete who has enjoyed her years in the program. She competes in bocce ball and volleyball, but tennis is dearest to her heart. “I have fun with friends. People are so nice to me and I learn a lot from the coaches,” Karissa stated.

When Karissa is not in the Special Olympics, she works full time locally.

 

Alondra Solis – College of the Canyons Women’s Soccer

The sophomore midfielder played an integral role in College of the Canyons’ 8-0 win against Allan Hancock on Tuesday, Oct. 2. Scoring the final two goals of the game for the Cougars, Solis assisted on two other scoring opportunities in the shut-out win.

Weston Eget – West Ranch Football

The senior quarterback broke West Ranch’s single-game passing yards record, throwing for 431 yards and five touchdowns on 14-of-32 pass attempts in Friday’s 46-14 win over Canyon. The previous record (412 yards) was set by Jackson Clark in 2014.

Canyon Country Campus to Throw Star Party on October 12

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 10, 2018

Caltech Astronomy graduate student Anna Ho will be guiding this semester’s interstellar journey at the College of the Canyons Star Party on Friday, Oct. 12 at the Canyon Country campus.

The topic in focus for the evening is “Dirty Fireballs and Orphan Afterglows: A Broader Landscape of Stellar Death.”

Anna Ho’s research on a rare and extreme case of stellar death has been published in two of her own works and included in 14 others. She has also designed and taught several courses and workshops on math, science, astronomy and cosmology.

In addition to her presentation, interactive demonstrations, activity tables and a portable planetarium will be run by students, faculty and staff from the college. Multiple telescopes will also be set up by local astronomy groups, allowing attendees to get a closer look at the night sky.

“Attendees will have the opportunity to interact with the college in a way that’s both educational and fun,” said Anthony Michaelides, dean of Campus Services and Operations at the Canyon Country campus. “Our Star Parties allow our students, faculty and staff to showcase the sciences in a variety of ways, and the timing couldn’t be better, with our new science building under construction.”

The Canyon Country campus is located at 17200 Sierra Highway.

The fall 2018 Star Party will take place Friday, October 12 from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at the Canyon Country campus’ Carl A. Rasmussen Amphitheater.

This event is free and open to the public. Food and beverages will also be available for purchase on site. Families will not want to miss this out-of-this-world opportunity.

For more details about the fall 2018 Star Party, visit the Canyon Country campus web page.

Ask the Expert – Most Affordable Areas in Canyon Country

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 9, 2018

The great thing about Canyon Country is that we have homes for every buyer. This is such a wonderful community because of its great schools, parks, shopping, dining, and it’s safe for families to enjoy, yet very affordable and close to work.

Canyon Country is made up of five areas (Canyon Country 1, 2 & 3 with Rainbow Glen and Sand Canyon).

In Canyon Country 1 & 2 many of the older homes are perfect for first-time buyers, as they are affordable and usually have no Mello-Roos taxes and no HOA and run from $425k – $525k for a 3-bedroom, 2-bath home between 1,000 -1,500 square feet. Many of these homes will need some updating and are perfect for a buyer to fix up to add instant equity.

Canyon Country 3 is a newer area, built from 1999 on, and it consists of Fair Oaks Ranch, which has an HOA, and the Ranch at Fair Oaks, which has an HOA and Mello-Roos tax. These homes are quality, built by Pardee Homes, and are perfect for the move-up buyer. They run between $550k-$750k for a 3- to 6-bedroom home and are as big as 2,300 -3,800 square feet.

Sand Canyon is perfect for the high-end buyer. These homes tend to have large lots, pools and room for a guest house or corral for horses, etc. They tend to sell for between $750k-$2.5m and can be as big as 5,000 square feet.

Also, a few other wonderful subdivisions are Rainbow Glen, Shangri La, Canyon Crest, Stetson Ranch, Sunset Heights and Stonecrest, just to name a few, and sell for between $500k-$700k on average. Lastly, there are several affordable condos and townhomes that run between $250k-$400k that are the perfect place to begin homeownership, build equity and move up in 3 to 5 years to your dream home.

With new developments like Aliento, Skyline Ranch, Vista Canyon (shops, dining, parks, etc.) and the new Disney Studios to be built, Canyon Country is going to be “the place to be” and should continue to see values rise for many years to come.

I specialize in the Canyon Country area. All of my services are free. I offer up to $5,000 towards your closing costs and a free local MOVE when I help you purchase a home.

CRAIG MARTIN – Realty One Group – 661-361-6843

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Wear it Pink

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 8, 2018

It’s a campaign with thousands of participants worldwide. Breast Cancer Awareness Month reminds individuals everywhere to get mammograms and to contribute to research in an effort to reduce the instances and deaths from the disease.

The annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure was the first to distribute pink ribbons, marking the symbol for breast cancer with the color pink.

There are many local events this month to promote awareness:

4th Annual Ride for a Cure
October 12 at Santa Clarita Athletic Club
5-7 p.m.
Participants will spin while DJ Mark Anthony and instructor Janet Jaycee lead the way. 661-200-1200.

Eat, Drink and Raise Funds
October 15 at Rattler’s Bar B Que
A portion of receipts go to Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center. Rattler’s is located at 26495 Golden Valley Road in Santa Clarita. 661-251-4195.

Eat, Drink and Raise Funds at StoneFire Grill
October 16 at StoneFire Grill
A portion of receipts go to Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center. StoneFire is located at 23300 Cinema Drive in Valencia. 661-200-1200.

Breast Cancer Awareness Lecture
October 17 at the SCV Senior Center
1-2 p.m.
Henry Mayo Hospital nurse navigator Heather Kellis Young, RN will inform attendees about prevention, detection and treatment. Free. SCV Sr. Center is located at 22900 Market St. in Santa Clarita.

The Daily Harvest Cafe and Juicery
October 20 at The Daily Harvest
This family owned and operated restaurant will donate 10% of its sales to the Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center. The Daily Harvest is located at 22722 Lyons Ave, Ste. 6 in Newhall. 661-383-9387.

Breast Cancer Awareness Lecture
October 23 at Henry Mayo Fitness and Health
5-6 p.m.
HMNMH nurse navigators Mara Shay, RN and Heather Kellis Young, RN will present information about prevention, detection and treatment. Free. Henry Mayo Fitness and Health, 24525 Town Center Dr. in Valencia. 661-200-1300.

Wolf Creek Brewery Community Pints
October 30 at Wolf Creek Brewery
4-9 p.m.
Live music, food trucks and Wolf Creek’s brews are available and a portion of sales goes to the Sheila Veloz Breast Center. Wolf Creek Brewery is located at 25108 Rye Canyon Loop in Valencia. 661-294-9977.

Greeting Customers: ‘How may I help you?’

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 6, 2018

by Ken Barnes

A colleague of mine once came to the office very upset, asking me, “Do I look like a shoplifter?” He was in a store earlier that day and one of the associates asked a simple, everyday question, one asked by nearly every customer service practitioner: “How may I help you?”

I suggested to my colleague that the store associate probably wanted to help him navigate his way around the store, and he responded with, “Do I look like someone who wouldn’t know his way around a store?”

As a minority, he doesn’t feel comfortable when he’s approached by store personnel who ask if they can help him.

While teaching a customer service training session to mid-level managers, I asked them what they thought about that simple question, “How may I help you?”

Below are some of the answers given by the participants in that class:

  • It makes me feel welcomed.
  • It is disrespectful, as though you are inadequate.
  • I don’t see anything wrong with it.
  • As a minority, that question makes me feel like I am being profiled.
  • I think they should wait for the customer to ask for help first.
  • The attendant is asking if I know why I am in the store!
  • It depends on how it is asked.
  • To me, it amounts to hustling.

Participants in the class could not agree on the usefulness of that favorite question, but they agreed that the associate’s tone, attitude, posture, and the general body language and expression are critical. The participants also agreed that asking the question with aggression does not help.

I asked the class which question we should ask in place of “how may I help you?” The following were some of the answers given:

  • Hello Sir/Ma’am; how may I be of service to you?
  • Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you.
  • Welcome; let me know if I could be of any assistance.
  • Hello; let me know what I can do to make your visit worthwhile.
  • Hello; I hope you are finding everything you need. Please let me know if I could be of any assistance.

It is crucial for all customer service practitioners to note that more than half of your customers will return based on a superior customer service experience. Traditionally we believe that if we dress well, smell good and smile to our customers we will win them. That is true, but we also need to exhibit knowledge about the product we sell, as well as the industry involved, and walk customers to the products they are looking for.

Again, where we most often drop the ball is in how we acknowledge the customers. Anytime a customer is made to feel hustled, unwelcomed, aggrieved or threatened during the acknowledgment stage, it’s a strike against us. From there, no amount of customer service will change the negative impression created about the store, shop, or eatery.

Note that little things go a long way to make a customer your raging fan. One of them is how you receive them.

Ken Barnes, MBA, DBA, is a management consultant with Specializations in Entrepreneurship and Business Management. You can reach him at kbreginc@gmail.com

Runners Join the 3rd Annual SPACEROCK Trail Race

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 6, 2018

Sometimes referred to as the final trail-running frontier, the annual SPACEROCK Trail Race returns this month to Vasquez Rocks in Agua Dulce. Hosted by New Global Adventures, it’s a half marathon, 10K or 5K race available to the public on October 13, 2018.

With the iconic Vasquez Rocks as a backdrop, participants will run across the former filming location of famous TV shows and movies, including “Star Trek,” “The Flintstones,” “Battlestar Galactica,” “Planet of the Apes,” and many classic westerns. The “out of this world” SPACEROCK Trail Race enables you to “explore strange, new trails, to seek out new life and new experiences, to boldly run where no one has run before.”

With three choices, runners of many levels of ability are welcome to join others in passing through rock formations and for longer distances into the canyons and the iconic tunnel going under the 14 freeway.

The starting point is located at Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park located at 10700 Escondido Canyon Road in Agua Dulce, beginning at sunrise, 6:00 a.m. Parking will be off-site and participants will be shuttled to the race staging area. Check the website for complete event details. You can read more about the race at SPACEROCKTrailRace.com, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Creators of the event also host the VALENCIA Trail Race (valenciatrailrace.com) in the hills of Valencia, Calif. and the Sugar Daddy Half Marathon (sugardaddymarathon.com) held on Father’s Day weekend in Santa Clarita.
“Our organization believes it is important to give back to the world,” says founder Terry Majamaki. “While our event’s focus is about giving runners an amazing race experience, we also want to give back to our local community and, when possible, to those in need around the world. By running in these races you will be supporting the local Wildlife Waystation, Global Adventure Kids and ChowChow.org.”

Headquartered in Southern California, New Global Adventures is a global service of software, media and event entertainment specializing in creating unique, one-of-a-kind experiences for the athletic and athletic industries around the world. Visit NewGlobalAdventures.com.

Gilchrist Farm Pumpkin Patch and Harvest Festival

| Canyon Country Magazine | October 6, 2018

by Natalia Radcliffe

Families have the chance to celebrate fall and the Halloween season at Gilchrist Farm’s Harvest Festival and Pumpkin Patch.

It is open from September 29 through October 31 every day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission is free.

During the week, there are Pony Rides and Wagon Rides available from 2-6 p.m. There is also a Straw Bale Maze and Petting Zoo that is open all day, as well as the chance to pick out and purchase a pumpkin. There is a Farm and Garden Tour at 4 p.m., and a Goat Milking Demonstration at 4 p.m. and again at 5 p.m.

The weekends are filled with more activities and sights to see, including a Straw Slide, Pumpkin Sling Shot, Chicken Splat Bingo, Horse Rides, Face Painting, and Live Entertainment. On weekends the Goat Milking Demonstrations are at 9 a.m. Pig Races will be held at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
For the crafty at heart, there are Fall Farm Crafts and Pumpkin Decorating. Food lovers can enjoy Fundraiser Bake Sales every weekend along with Carmel Apples, Roasted Corn on the Cob, and Food Trucks on the premises.

There is also a Marketplace where you can support local vendors selling handcrafted items, homemade goodies, specialty wares and more.

You can get free entry to the Straw Bale Maze if you donate to the SCV Food Pantry. Lists of possible donations are available at http://scvfoodpantry.org/HowtoHelp/NeededItems.aspx.

Gilchrist Farms is located at 30116 Bouquet Canyon Road in Saugus. For more information, visit www.gilchristfarm.com/harvest-festival.

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