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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.

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Trash or Tack?

| Opinion | January 30, 2015

by Steve Petzold

Steve head shotI was personally involved in the effort to defeat the digital billboard development agreement between the City of Santa Clarita and Metro, as the principal officer and treasurer of the No on Measure S Committee. During this process, I became quite familiar with and gained knowledge about onsite and offsite advertising in the City of Santa Clarita.

By developing three large digital billboards along the 5 and 14 freeways, the City claimed that it was attempting to eliminate trashy visual blight within the Metro right-of-way and develop a new revenue stream from a revenue sharing agreement. When it became apparent that a special deal would have to be made to accommodate the family-owned Edwards Outdoor Advertising to gain local support, our City Council agreed to pay them $1.3 million from the General Fund to take down their billboards over a three-year period.

The Edwards’ billboards are typically the smaller ones you see in Santa Clarita. They offer smaller local companies the ability to advertise offsite. As these are gradually removed, we can expect the entrepreneurs who operate these businesses to look for alternative means to grab your attention.

It seems that the first course of action by some businesses seems to be to purchase a cargo van or SUV and have it wrapped or painted with a promotional message. The owners then place these vehicles on their properties or park them on local streets.

As the most glaring example, those who drive Soledad Canyon may notice the large trailer with “Williams Homes” painted on the side. I have to give Lance Williams an “A” for his creativity.

Onsite advertising by businesses is subject to strict rules for the signs located near the street and attached to buildings. Aggressive business owners often attempt to stretch the rules.

At a recent City Council meeting the owner of Fiesta Insurance on Lyons Avenue made an appearance with a company vice president to lament that his mascot chicken was not allowed to stand by the street with a sign. His office is located a fair distance off the street and a chicken waving by the street without a sign was not very effective. This is especially true when the closest business to the street is a KFC franchise.

After meeting with the owner, Councilman Bob Kellar asked the City Manager to work with Fiesta to work out an agreement that would allow the mascot chicken to stand by the street and have some type of marking identifying the business. It was almost laughable when the Fiesta Vice President held up a small patch that presumably could be sewn onto the mascot.

Last Saturday I drove down Lyons and noticed the chicken waving to passing vehicles while a passenger car was positioned strategically in the parking lot with a large sign strapped to the side.  I could not help but stop and take a picture for my archive.

I do not know whether the vehicle sign was placed with the advice and consent of the City or whether Fiesta Insurance decided that a small patch would not accomplish the goal. It is ironic, in my opinion, that the same councilman who loudly proclaimed billboards to be trashy, would intervene with the City staff to accommodate an advertising tactic that is so tacky.

Fiesta Insurance is not the only business that uses the waving mascot. Liberty Insurance on Bouquet has young adults dressed as the Statue of Liberty near the sidewalk dancing wildly from dawn to well past dusk.

The elimination of the Edwards billboards over the next several years may very well put pressure on local businesses to adopt nontraditional means of onsite advertising. As our City pays to take down the “trash,” expect to see more “tack.” Perhaps we will see Colonel Sanders waving side by side with the Fiesta Chicken.

Hero of the Week – Melissa Hollinger

| SC Living | January 30, 2015

From the moment she joined the Yes I Can (YIC) program as a Canyon High School student, Melissa Hollinger has immersed herself in it. YIC is a class taught at Canyon High school that integrates the special education population with the general education students. Melissa has shown compassion to each student who creates a piece of the puzzle that makes up the YIC family. A majority of the special ed population in YIC has a form of Autism known as Asperger’s syndrome. While these students tend to strive academically, they often lack social skills, which is why combining them with general education mentors is instrumental for their social growth.

Not only has Melissa’s love been shown through her actions toward her peers, by building relationships, but through her commitment to the year-end project, the Summer Meltdown Autism Awareness Arts and Music Festival. She is instrumental in planning and producing the festival, by taking the lead on the food committee. She goes above and beyond her chosen role by fundraising and raising awareness within her community. Melissa is a leader who takes this role to heart and is an outstanding role model. She is a mentor in the YIC program, a student trainer in the safe school anti-bullying program and in the leadership program at her high school, fighting to stop social exclusion and advocate for others. In addition to all of this, she started the Helping Hands club at Canyon High School to help tutor students. Melissa is truly Yes I Can’s hero every week.

Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 30, 2015

A 53-year-old Castaic man whose occupation is civil rights leader was charged with battery against a former spouse. And a 48-year-old Saugus man who is a bull rider was picked up with a charge of being drunk/drugs with alcohol.

The most widely publicized case this week involved an unemployed 30-year-old Newhall man suspected of committing murder.

A 22-year-old Winchester, Calif. man who works in contractor supply was arrested for battery with great bodily injury.

Two unemployed Canyon Country men who are neighbors – a 20-year-old and a 21-year-old – were arrested for robbery. A 19-year-old unemployed Saugus man was picked up for theft of personal property.

A 23-year-old unemployed Lancaster man was picked up for acquiring access to a card in four or more names.

An unemployed 18-year-old Newhall man was picked up for taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent. A 19-year-old student from Palmdale was picked up for grand theft auto/horse, etc.

A 31-year-old Canyon Country man was charged with attempting to take a vehicle without the owner’s consent.

An unemployed 32-year-old Bloomington, Minn. Man was cited for failure to obey a peace officer. A 27-year-old construction worker from Santa Clarita was brought in for violation of parole: felony.

A 19-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for possession of a controlled substance.

DUIs with prior arrests included:
51-year-old doctor from Altadena
28-year-old loan officer from Bakersfield
37-year-old unemployed Corcoran man
27-year-old electrician from Canyon Country
53-year-old Lancaster man
61-year-old laborer from Saugus
29-year-old journeyman lineman from Baxter, Minn.
40-year-old self-employed Valencia man
33-year-old dock worker from Mission Hills
24-year-old cook from Palmdale
19-year-old unemployed Canyon Country man
22-year-old installer from Northridge
23-year-old dispatcher from Bermuda Dunes, Calif.
35-year-old dishwasher from Acton

Female Athlete of the Week – Angelina Puno

| SC Living | January 30, 2015

SONY DSCStill just a sophomore at Canyon High School, this Girls Basketball team standout has moved into SONY DSCa starting role. Angelina Puno scored 10 points in her team’s 52-48 win over Valencia in a Foothill League game. It was the third win in a row for Canyon. The Canyon girls were 3-1 in the Foothill League standings after the win.
“Angelina has really become a work horse for us-offensively and defensively!” says Canyon Girls Basketball Coach Jessica Haayer. “She has been doing an outstanding job at running the point guard position. She is getting better and better with each game under her belt.”

Additional Volunteers Sought for Homeless Charity

| News | January 29, 2015

Family Promise SCV is currently seeking volunteers who are interested in providing meals to homeless families in the Santa Clarita community.

The growing non-profit organization works with dozens of local congregations that provide temporary overnight stays at their facilities. Each night, a meal is provided at the congregation site to the families, prepared by volunteers. Right now, Family Promise is seeking volunteers to be part of a list that can be called upon to provide dinner on occasion to families in the program.
“At any given time there are between one and four families that we are hosting. These families stay overnight at local congregations and during the day they are at our Center working their individual plans that will take them out of homelessness. Having a list of volunteers who are willing to provide dinners on occasion for these families is a huge help and very welcome,” explains Laurie Ender, President of Family Promise SCV.

Family Promise works to achieve sustainable independence for its guests while offering hope, compassion, and preserving individual dignity.

For more information about Family Promise or to sign up as a volunteer to provide meals to homeless families, contact the Center at 661-251-2868 or via email at: contact@FamilyPromiseSCV. You can visit Family Promise SCV online at: www.familypromisescv.org.

New Chamber Board Members and Henry Mayo and Others Recognized at Banquet

| News | January 29, 2015

Members of the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce gathered at the Hyatt Regency Valencia last weekend for the organization’s 91st Banquet. In addition to the installation of new members to the Chamber’s Board of Directors, awards were granted to member businesses for service to the community.

Winner of the Large Business of the Year Award was Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital.

“We were thrilled to honor Henry Mayo tonight, they represent everything that is good in our community,” said Terri Crain, president/CEO of the Chamber.

Henry Mayo was recognized again when the hospital’s director of marketing public relations, Patrick Moody, was sworn in as a board member. Fast Frame took home the award for Small Business of the Year for the owners’ ongoing commitment and dedication to the Chamber. Randy and Rose-Marie Burzynski donate all the custom framing for Chamber grand opening certificates. Signal Multi-Media took the spotlight for Medium Business.

“They have been a great supporter of the Chamber over the past year and continue to give more than they are asked for,” said Sue Nevius, 2015 chairman of the board.

Ambassador of the Year went to Tobias Anne Skelly, owner of GitNoticed Marketing. When asked about Toby, Chamber Membership Director Cheryl Ramirez said, “Toby is everywhere. She runs committees, volunteers for everything! She has earned this prestigious award, hands down!”

For more information about the Chamber visit the website, www.scvchamber.com or call 661-702-6977.

Male Athlete of the Week – Malik McCowan

| SC Living | January 29, 2015

malikNow in his senior year at Valencia High School, the Vikings Boys Basketball team is benefiting from Malik McCowan’s skills as a guard. In a game against cross town rival Canyon High School, Malik scored 22 points, 17 in the second half, in his team’s 56-43 win in Foothill League play. Canyon and Valencia were tied for second place in the league standings with 3-1 records after the game.

“Malik has so much passion for the game of basketball,” said Valencia High School Boys Basketball Coach Chad Phillips. “He plays the game hard and smart. But, mostly his leadership on and off the court is what separates him from other players. Valencia Basketball is blessed to have Malik McCowan leading the way.”

Canyon Country Bake Shop Hosts Demos Saturday

| News | January 29, 2015

Canyon Country’s Kake Kreations 2 has some sweet opportunities for the community. This weekend, on Saturday, January 31, the store is hosting a Cookie Demonstration from 12 Noon to 3:00 p.m. Stop by to watch the experts at work. There will be another Cookie Demonstration on Valentine’s Day, February 14 from 12 Noon to 3:00 p.m.

For those of you who want to become more expert yourselves, Kake Kreations is holding cookie classes. A talented expert will teach attendees some basic skills so they can create professional cookies. Each student will receive about half a dozen cookies to decorate and will walk step-by-step with the teacher, learning techniques for shaping and icing the cookies. Reserve a seat for one of the classes by calling the store at (661) 252-1272.

Classes will be held on the following dates:
Monday, Feb 2 from 7-9 p.m.- Royal Icing 101 
Friday, Feb 6 from 7-9 p.m. – Cookie Decorating Class Beginner Part 1 (Valentine’s Day Theme)

Friday, February 13 from 7-9 p.m. – Cookie Decorating Class Beginner Part 2 (Valentine’s Day theme with St. Patrick’s Day Preview)

Kake Kreations 2 is located at 18986 Soledad Canyon Road in Canyon Country; (661) 252-1272. Visit www.kakekreations.com.

Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 23, 2015

A charge was on the police blotter that is new to the Santa Clarita Gazette: a 23-year-old unemployed Saugus man was charged with possessing graffiti tools. Also, a 25-year-old unemployed Valencia man was picked up for unauthorized possession of a syringe/needle.

A 26-year-old man who wouldn’t give his address was picked up for illegal possession of ammunition, and an unemployed 43-year-old Santa Clarita man was cited for drawing/exhibiting an imitation firearm.

There were three men picked up with firearm charges last week. An 18-year-old Lancaster man and a 20-year-old Palmdale man were cited for having an occupant with a concealed firearm in a vehicle. A 20-year-old Lancaster man was charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon/addict/etc.

A 42-year-old salesman from Valencia was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon with great bodily injury. And a 42-year-old Saugus man was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon not a firearm, with great bodily injury.

A 33-year-old construction worker from Saugus was arrested for cruelty to a child likely to produce great bodily injury/death.

A 20-year-old unemployed Valencia man, a 40-year-old court reporter from Stevenson Ranch, a 46-year-old electrician from Castaic and a 46-year-old unemployed Canyon Country man were all charged with corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant in the last week. And a 19-year-old Canyon Country man who works in security was arrested for battery against a former spouse.

A 19-year-old Bowman High School student was brought in for robbery. An unemployed 26-year-old Santa Clarita man was brought in for unauthorized entry into a non-commercial dwelling. An unemployed 18-year-old from Lancaster was picked up for grand theft auto/horse/etc. And an unemployed 33-year-old Palmdale man was charged with receiving known stolen property.

A 47-year-old window installer from Santa Clarita was charged with transporting/selling a controlled substance.

Charges of possession of a controlled substance went to:
26-year-old unemployed Saugus man
43-year-old Valencia man who works for a computer network
19-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita man
30-year-old dishwasher from Newhall
45-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita man

DUIs with prior arrests included:
35-year-old poker player from Jackson, Calif.
36-year-old self-employed Temple City man
46-year-old Saugus man who refused to give his occupation
18-year-old construction worker from Lancaster
53-year-old skip tracer from Studio City
25-year-old bartender from Saugus
19-year-old student from San Fernando
33-year-old heavy equipment operator from Fillmore
29-year-old chef from Castaic
21-year-old pharmacy tech from Rosamond
51-year-old unemployed Stevenson Ranch man

Remo Personally Delivers Drums to SCVi, iLEAD’s Founding School

| News | January 22, 2015

Local school, SCVi, which is iLEAD’s founding school, received a generous donation directly from drum company owner Remo Belli last Tuesday. A gift of 30 drums was presented to learners, to upper school Director Matt Watson, and to school founder, Amber Raskin, at the Santa Clarita campus. Following the presentation, two learners from the iLEAD ambassadors program guided Remo on a tour of the facility.

“SCVi & iLEAD Charter Schools are looking forward to the many ways drumming will enhance educational experiences for learners,” said Founder and Co-Executive Director Amber Raskin.

Studies have shown that rhythm in the classroom can help facilitate the connections learners make in mathematics, language arts, and other subjects.  iLEAD and SCVi Charter School administrators are always looking for ways to enhance the learners’ experience. 

“The school is looking forward to the many ways drumming will add to the classroom setting.” said Raskin. “But equally, if not more important to SCVi and iLEAD Charter Schools, is the benefit of developing leadership and social emotional growth of learners while in a drum circle and using instruments.”

Innovation through rhythm and music is nothing new to Remo Belli. Founded in 1957, Remo, Inc. has been on the cutting edge of creating instruments that outpace the environmental, technical and musical advantages of other percussion instruments. An extension of Remo’s commitment to improving the quality of life through music, the company has developed HealthRHYTHMS, a method of using rhythm to foster growth in creative expression, reduce stress and improve mood in people of all ages. iLEAD schools will be training staff to facilitate the evidence-based HealthRHYTHMS program in the coming months.

Learners taking part in SCVi’s sensory integration program have already benefitted from the use of the NSL drum table. Equipped with a 40-inch drumhead, the NSL drum, made with Comfort Sound Technology, is designed to create a quality of sound that is beautiful and comfortable, even for people with sensitivity to sound. The teacher’s voice can be easily heard while the drum is played by a group of learners sitting around the drum table and the controlled movement of the head facilitates rhythmic entrainment. It has become a favorite of the learners in SCVi’s sensory integration program.

“With the addition of 30 more handheld drums, we look forward to integrating drumming into classes and groups across all of the K-12 grade levels. This will surely add to our learners’ growth in academics and leadership,” said upper school Director Matt Watson.

To find out more about the HealthRHYTHMS program go to www.remo.com/health. To learn more about SCVi and iLEAD schools go to ileadschools.org.

Jaso vs. Doug – A Differing Opinion Irresponsible Corporate Freedoms Again

| Opinion | January 16, 2015

Dear Mr. Ranter,

It is time to stop corporate carte blanche in the pursuit of the best bottom line.

This time it is not about polluting our oceans or air as a byproduct of profit, nor is it workplace safety issues falling short in order to cut costs. This time it’s something different—the for profit abuse of freedom of speech.

A couple of weeks ago Sony nearly released a humorous film depicting a comedic plot that assassinates a foreign leader. Sony saw this project as another great profit maker. Nothing more and nothing less.

One must wonder how we Americans would have received a foreign film with a “humorous” story that culminated in the assassination of a U.S. president. Whether your preferred leader is Bush or Obama, America would have been offended. Yet, from conception to release date, Sony executives failed to wake up and say, “This is in bad taste, offensive to an entire nation, and is not a good idea.” The oblivious juggernaut marched ahead.

Ultimately, the film was not released as planned. Was it withheld for the moral reasons mentioned above? No. Rather, after receiving threats of violence and terrorism, many theaters began pulling the film. To avoid a poor opening weekend showing and the possibility of many expensive lawsuits for the loss of life that may have occurred at said opening weekend, Sony opted to pull the film completely. Once again, another decision based solely on bottom line results.

Mr. Ranter, we know you righties love unbridled corporate freedoms. But, really?


Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 16, 2015

There was a range of theft in the SCV in the last week, one involving a three-year-old. A 37-year-old construction worker from Saugus was arrested for kidnapping a toddler from Newhall. An unemployed 22-year-old Newhall man was arrested for burglary. A 31-year-old computer tech from Los Angeles and a 28-year-old construction worker from Castaic were charged with robbery. A 43-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for receiving known stolen property valued at more than $400. Two unemployed Los Angeles men, ages 22 and 24, were picked up for theft of personal property.

A 20-year-old valet from Valencia and two Stevenson Ranch men – a 22-year-old construction foreman and a 20-year-old student – were cited for entering/occupying a property without consent. And a 56-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for unauthorized entry into a non-commercial dwelling.

An 18-year-old unemployed Inglewood woman was charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent, as was an unemployed 18-year-old Fresno man. A 30-year-old TV director from Glendale was cited for reckless driving.

DUIs with prior arrests included:
20-year-old Costa Mesa nanny
24-year-old painter from Castaic
45-year-old horse trainer from Canyon Country
29-year-old electrician from Newbury Park

Two Bakersfield men – a 19-year-old handyman and a 41-year-old waiter – were picked up for transporting/selling, etc. a controlled substance.

A 45-year-old sculptor from Saugus and a 44-year-old roofer from Canyon Country were picked up for possession of a controlled substance for sale. And a 32-year-old bartender from Sherman Oaks was charged with possession of a controlled substance.

A 38-year-old glass polisher from Van Nuys was charged with failure to appear after a written promise.

A couple – a transient 27-year-old and a 27-year-old mechanic from Newhall – were cited for building fires on posted property.

A 39-year-old Santa Clarita man who works as an oil changer was picked up for making criminal threats.

A 37-year-old pastor from Canyon Country was arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant earlier in the week. Last weekend, a 44-year-old Valencia doctor and a 35-year-old computer programmer from Castaic were brought in for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant.

My Comments about Public Comment

| City Council, Opinion | January 15, 2015

by Steve Petzold

Steve head shotI went to the City Council meeting on Tuesday evening planning to make a statement regarding the lack of a meaningful response to the voter’s rejection of Measure S on November 4, 2014. Unfortunately for me, a large number of individuals had already signed speaker cards and I would be required to wait until the end of the meeting to make comment.

For those of you unfamiliar with council procedure, let me provide a quick background. Following an invocation and time for awards and recognition, the council allows public comment from a maximum number of ten individuals for up to three minutes. This time is typically reserved for issues from the public that do not relate to items on the published agenda. If the number of public commentators exceeds 10, they must wait until after the council has finished the normal business, and public comment is allowed to commence again. In general, the members of the city council are not allowed to publicly comment on items not on the agenda.

For items on the agenda, speakers are allowed three minutes for comment before consideration of the issue.

In my opinion this system works fairly well, although the public speaker is at a disadvantage, because they do not have the ability to respond to, or rebut statements made during council consideration of the item.

What I learned during the time that I sat through public comment is what I would like to share with you today.  There are several issues that we should keep our eyes on over the next few months.

Santa Clarita, as most of us know, has several mobile home communities, concentrated in the Canyon Country area. These mobile homes are usually owned by residents, but sit on spaces that are leased from the landowner. There is a rent control ordinance that covers these parks and the City Council is considering an ordinance that allows for an update on allowable rent increase. The number that I hear is a maximum three percent increase.

A large number of the speakers at the beginning of last night’s meeting are residents of the mobile home parks who object to this increase, because they are on fixed incomes and the increases on their Social Security are less than those on the proposed lease increases.

If I learned one thing during the billboard battle over Measure S, it was to have a degree of empathy for the concerns of others, even if I did not find a great deal of value in the issue itself. I recognized one of the speakers as a dear man who I often see at the Senior Center. He and his “wife” sat through the meeting to hear a response to the plea for rent increase relief. It really touched my heart to see the sincere concern on their faces.

The City plans to make a decision in the late winter or early spring. It certainly appears to me that the City Manager, staff, and Council members are attempting to find a good balance, although I expect that the residents will be unhappy with the result.

The other issue for us to watch is the proposed expansion of the Chiquita Landfill in Val Verde. On this issue, the City has no meaningful control and the decision is in the hands of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.
Next to the mobile home residents, the next largest number of public comments came from citizens concerned with this issue.

But, Santa Clarita City Council will not make this decision; City staff does evaluate the public documents and makes recommendations and comments for the City Council to review. There are many serious concerns that the public has about this expansion, but powerful interests are in favor of it and there does not seem to be a reasonable alternative plan for future solid waste disposal requirements.

It was rather nice to sit back and see the important issues that affect our city and the Santa Clarita Valley discussed by citizens like you and me.
It is important for our representative democracy and the future of the SCV that citizens utilize the City Council public comment period. My advice is to take advantage of this process … and get your speaker card in early.

Santa Colorita 5K Run Supports Jack’s Angels

| News | January 15, 2015

The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce is registering runners and volunteers for the second annual “Santa Colorita Run.” Held February 14, 2015, the event is described as a “festival of community, color, fitness, fun and families” at Castaic Lake Recreation Area.

The event is held all over the world fostering a celebration of health, happiness, individuality, and a spirit of giving back to one’s community. This event is for runners and participants of all ages, but there is an important rule: runners must wear white. Some participants wear goggles, because at the end of the race they all get doused with non-toxic powder in many colors.

santa colorita2A portion of the race called “Skip for Jack” will take place just before the first wave of Santa Colorita. It is dedicated to the charity Jack’s Angels Foundation, named for Jack Demeter, who was diagnosed at age three with Diffused Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) and died nine months later. Participants will skip around the booths, raising awareness for the disease. They will each be given a handmade gift and can participate in a balloon release. Those who register with more than 10 people will qualify as a “team” and get to choose a team name.

Registration for any event at the Santa Colorita Run is available online until February 9. After that date, call the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce at (661) 702-6977.

The price for “Skip for Jack” is $10. Registration for the 5K race is $65 before February 9. Runners may use discount code: “72514” to save $15. Groups of 10 people registered together as a team receive a $5 discount per person.

Children 12 and under and seniors (65+) are $22.50 and strollers are free. There are no discounts for these pricing groups.

The Castaic Lake Recreation Area is located at 32132 Castaic Lake Drive in Castaic.

Visit www.santacolorita.com

Female Athlete of the Week – Alexa Porchia

| SC Living | January 15, 2015

Female AthleteThis Canyon High School senior is a point guard and a shooting guard on the Girls Basketball team. The top defensive player, Alexa leads the team in steals. She showed her offensive skills recently, scoring 29 points in her team’s 58-38 win over Garfield in the Fairfax Tournament. The Canyon girls improved to 12-4, thanks to players like Alexa.

“I’ve coached her for three years, and I believe she’s our best athlete,” said Paul Broneer, CHS Girls Basketball team assistant coach. “This year, she’s beating two to three people to the basket and often gets fouled. Alexa’s having to take on a bigger role and she’s handled it well. She’s really a competitor.”

Male Athlete of the Week – Joshua Garnica

| SC Living | January 15, 2015

male athlete1

male athlete2A junior at William S. Hart High School, Joshua Garnica is making a strong showing for the Boys Soccer team. He scored a goal in his team’s 2-0 shutout over La Canada last week. The Hart Boys team has a seven-game winning streak and are 12-1-2.

“We have scored 37 goals and have only been scored on three times in 15 games. It’s the best defense I’ve had in my last three years, said Coach Adonay Jovel. “Joshua Garnica is very dangerous around the box and has strong technical abilities. He is a team player who plays where you need him and is always willing to learn.”

Nearly 50 Local Authors at Library Celebration

| News | January 15, 2015

The Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library, with support from the Santa Clarita Public Library, will once again present the Celebration of Local Authors event from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 17, 2015 at the Old Town Newhall branch, located at 24500 Main Street.

This exciting free event will feature 48 local authors, and provide them with the opportunity to share their work with the public. Authors will participate in moderated panel discussions which will be followed by a question and answer time from the public. Attendees will also be able to purchase the authors’ books throughout the event and obtain autographs.

The Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library is an active group of Santa Clarita residents who volunteer, advocate and fundraise to meet the needs of the local library system. All of the proceeds from the fundraising efforts and programs sponsored by the Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library go towards providing new materials and programming. To receive information about Friends events or to join as a general member, email friends@santaclaritalibrary.com.

For more information about the Second Annual Celebration of Local Authors, visit SantaClaritaFol.com or contact Santa Clarita Public Library Marketing, PR and Special Projects Coordinator Robin Hoklotubbe at (661) 799-6135 or email at friends@santaclaritalibrary.com.

Sheriffs: Ride ATVs Only in Designated Areas

| News | January 15, 2015

After a year of numerous deaths and injuries from off-roading, the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station is reminding residents in the community, including the SCV, to be aware of rules and regulations when they ride. Now is often considered the best time of year to ride an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and enjoy the thrill, but remember to only ride in areas designated for these types of vehicles.

Every year the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station receives hundreds of calls for service regarding illegal riders, mainly in the Acton/Agua Dulce area. Many of these riders are individuals who live in these communities. It is a very upsetting situation for residents of Acton/Agua Dulce area, because ATV riding in these two communities is prohibited. The land is either privately owned or owned by utility companies; therefore, riding in these areas is illegal.

The Palmdale Sheriff’s Station has an off-road team which is funded by a grant through the State and County Department of Parks and Recreation. These deputies are assigned to patrol these areas and look for illegal riders. Generally the team dedicates over 48 hours a month to the Acton/Agua Dulce area and contacts between 10-20 people during each shift. If you are on an ATV and stopped, you will be cited for riding in a non-designated area, pursuant to 15.68.020 of the Los Angeles County Code (LACC) – Off Road Vehicle Trespassing.

Sheriffs are asking the public to refrain from riding in non-designated riding areas. If you would like information on areas that have been designated in Southern California visit the website.

If you have any other questions or concerns contact Jodi Wolfe at 661-272-2520 or email jewolfe@lasd.org.

*Courtesy of www.hometownstation.com

Santa Clarita Family Provides the Gift of Open Space to Public Trust

| News | January 15, 2015

There are many residents of Santa Clarita who are open space advocates and enjoy outdoor sports and recreation. There are few, however, who have the means and generosity to expand its accessibility.

Bob and Wendy Stevenson proved that they are dedicated to the preservation of land last month when they donated two 4.91-acre lots to the City of Santa Clarita creating additional open space. This gift of approximately 10 acres of property is adjacent to the City’s existing Golden Valley Ranch open space.

Rather than building on this property, which is located in Sand Canyon, the Stevensons decided that they wanted to give current and future residents the opportunity to experience the pristine mountains viewable from the two donated lots.
This is the second property donation made by the Stevenson family. In 2007, the couple donated 16.3 acres of land to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (SMMC).

The property will add to the City’s continued efforts to preserve open space and provide additional recreational opportunities for residents in the future. Currently the City of Santa Clarita, with the help from funding partners and the passing of the Open Space Preservation District, has preserved thousands of acres of open space for the public to enjoy in perpetuity.

For additional information on the Stevenson’s property donation to the City of Santa Clarita, contact Bob Stevenson at 805-490-2300.

Athletes of the Week – Male – Michael Valencia, Female – Nickey Davis

| SC Living | January 10, 2015

As goalkeeper for the Hart Indians Varsity Girls Soccer team, Nickey Davis played a key role in taking the championship at the Hart Soccer Showcase last week. She made two crucial saves in the penalty kick portion of the championship game of the tournament. The Hart girls won, 5-4 on penalty kicks, against Quartz Hill. The two teams played to a 1-1 draw in regulation. Hart won its own soccer tournament for the third time in the past four years, thanks to Nickey’s winning save.

Thanks to Hart High School sophomore Michael Valencia, the Varsity Boys Soccer team brought in its third championship in four years at the Hart Soccer Showcase last week. Michael scored two goals in Hart’s 3-1 win over Valencia in the championship game of the tournament. Hart improved to 10-1-2 and are unbeaten in 10 straight games against Valencia. With team members like Michael Valencia, Hart stands ready to see more of the same.



Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 9, 2015

There was a rare charge of kidnapping in the last week. A 29-year-old gardener from Canyon Country was arrested for the crime.

There were several different types of theft in the last week. A 35-year-old contractor from Stevenson Ranch was picked up for taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent. An unemployed 35-year-old Newhall woman was brought in for forgery/counterfeit of a public/corporate seal. A 50-year-old engineering assistant was charged with theft of personal property. And a 47-year-old unemployed Lancaster man was arrested for burglary.

A 22-year-old Palmdale man was charged with defacing/damaging property valued at less than $400, and an unemployed 25-year-old Santa Clarita man was picked up for defacing property.

A 22-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for trespassing on lands under cultivation.

Those who received a charge of driving under the influence included:
53-year-old Bakersfield man
37-year-old landscaper from Garden Grove
21-year-old food server from Canyon Country
23-year-old salesman from Pacoima
58-year-old unemployed Carson man
25-year-old unemployed Palmdale woman
29-year-old construction worker from Newhall
24-year-old service worker from North Hollywood
21-year-old unemployed Agua Dulce man
46-year-old studio driver from Santa Clarita
34-year-old loading tech from Fillmore
28-year-old unemployed Castaic man
39-year-old maintenance worker from Panorama City
21-year-old waitress from Sylmar

A 34-year-old Castaic man who works at a car wash was cited for carrying a switchblade knife. And an 18-year-old Canyon Country man was charged with manufacturing/selling/giving/lending/possessing metal knuckles. A 32-year-old electrician from Saugus was arrested for illegal possession of ammunition.

An unemployed 37-year-old Lemon Grove man was brought in for assault with a deadly weapon, with great bodily injury, and a 28-year-old Saugus woman was charged with assault with a deadly weapon used on a police officer/fireman, without a firearm, causing great bodily injury.

Charges of corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant were brought against:
20-year-old custodian from Newhall
50-year-old unemployed Valencia man
18-year-old construction worker from Valencia
31-year-old loader from Newhall
30-year-old unemployed Van Nuys man

A 27-year-old gardener from Newhall was charged with battery against a former spouse, and a 45-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita man was charged with battery on a non-cohabitating former spouse. A 48-year-old Valencia construction worker was charged with disobeying a domestic relations court order.

Residents Meet Fitness Goals with Community Center Classes

| News | January 9, 2015

Fitness is at the forefront of people’s minds this time of year, and the City of Santa Clarita is one step ahead of the crowd. Two local community centers have a number of classes slated for this year, open to residents with plans for some healthy workouts .

Community Members of all ages can mix up their fitness routines at affordable prices with the following programs available at the City’s Community Centers:

Canyon Country Community Center (18792 Flying Tiger Drive)
For more information, or to register for the following programs, visit Santa-Clarita.com/CCCC or call 661-284-1480.
CCCC Striders (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays beginning January 5, 2015 – Staff will lead a moderate to fast-paced walk on differing routes.
Dance It Out! (Adults) – From 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays beginning on January 14, 2015 – This beginner-friendly, follow-the-leader cardio dance class blends a variety of dance styles from Broadway to Bollywood to hip hop and funk.
POUND Rockout Workout (Adults) – From 5:45 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. on Mondays and/or Thursdays beginning on January 12, 2015 – Participants can experience a full body cardio jam session, combining light resistance with constant simulated drumming.
SMART ProTrainer Circuit (Adults) – From 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesdays beginning on January 6, 2015 – This class combines strength training, explosive plyometric, and speed training, while using the SMART ProTrainer interactive wall. Each exercise option will have modifications for various fitness levels.

Newhall Community Center Fitness (22421 Market Street)
For more information, or to register for the following programs, visit Santa-Clarita.com/NCC or call 661-286-4006
Boxing Fitness (Adults) – From 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning January 13, 2015 – This class teaches fundamental boxing techniques to improve overall fitness while burning calories.
Boxing Introduction – For adults from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and for youth from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning January 13, 2015 – Learn the basics of boxing mechanics, including skill and technique development, circuit training and drills. Participants must provide their own equipment.
Dance Workout – For adults from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and for youth from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Thursdays beginning January 15, 2015 – This class is all about having fun while dancing and burning calories to some great tunes!
Pilates (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays beginning on January 13, 2015 – Learn Pilates, which emphasizes the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility and awareness.
Yoga with Jackie (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Thursdays beginning on January 15, 2015 – Jackie teaches basic yoga poses and flows to stretch and strengthen the major muscles of the body, while increasing flexibility.
Zumba Gold Winter 2015 (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Thursdays beginning January 15, 2015 – Older adults can enjoy a modified Zumba ® class with the original moves at a lower-intensity.  Zumba Sculpt & Stretch (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, beginning on January 12, 2015 – This class incorporates cardio, strength and flexibility taught by a bilingual Spanish-speaking instructor.

*A $5 surcharge may be applied to classes for non-residents of the City of Santa Clarita.

Tilted Kilt Turns Family-Friendly with New Name

| News | January 9, 2015

tilted kiltTilted Kilt Pub & Eatery employees and officials from the corporate office have confirmed the Valencia restaurant is closed, officials said Monday. The restaurant will be re-branded and open as Varsity Draft House.

A Westfield Valencia Town Center official said the location was leased through CBRE.

One employee posted to Facebook, “Yesterday was my last day as a kilt girl… That’s right TILTED KILT IS CLOSING after tonight! I’ve gained so much experience from that place and I’m thankful but I’m also happy I’ll never wear that outfit or those hideous shoes again!! It will be renovated into a new BETTER restaurant bar where I’ll still be bartending so make sure you come check it out in about a week or so.”

Varsity Draft House management took little time to announce its plan to open.

Varsity-Draft-House-To-Replace-Tilted-Kilt-In-Santa-Clarita-620x330“I noticed so many rumors going around and knew we had to make a statement. (Monday) was a very hectic day,” said Varsity Draft House General Manager Richard Moore. “I heard a lot of things, like our rent increased, we were out of business. We had not gone under like a lot of people have been saying — we’re rebranding the pub to separate ourselves from Tilted Kilt.”

The new pub will be more “family-friendly” and the servers will no longer be wearing the “breastaurant-style” garb, Moore said. The new uniforms will be more “casual” with employees wearing jeans, a T-shirt and sneakers.

Management of the bar held a meeting Monday with all of the employees, in which management announced the change and offered employees the option to stay with the new restaurant or have a letter of recommendation to stay at Tilted Kilt.

“We were alerted (Monday) of the unexpected closing at the Valencia pub,” said Kelly McNamara, spokeswoman of Fisherman PR for Tilted Kilt’s corporate office. “We have been well received in the Valencia market since opening in February 2012.”

Management is planning to reopen the pub Jan. 9 at 5 p.m.
“Everyone is very, very excited,” Moore said. “The owners love Valencia. We felt we can better serve the employees and community by rebranding our pub. We’re extremely excited and we hope that the new concept is well received by the Santa Clarita Valley.”

Management plans to have a menu with “lots of burgers and a very big representation of some seafood,” he said, adding that “the selection is going to be very vast.”

“We tried to build a menu that we thought gives something for every taste for whoever to walks through the door,” Moore said. “We’re sports oriented. We have over 50 televisions, 10 satellites. We wanted to make this a place for families.”

“We’re looking at long-term strategy,” he added. “We’re going to be here for the long haul.”

Business of the Week – Securitas

| SC Living | January 9, 2015


Offering customized security services to a broad range of business clients, Securitas is able to tailor its service to each company. The Los Angeles management team serves clients in approximately 300 locations, placing security officers in small, medium and large businesses, assisting executives in providing safety with operational efficiency.

Securitas provides security in high rise commercial real estate properties, residential communities, retail stores, and offers both permanent and temporary services. The trusted company contracts with many Santa Clarita locations, hiring only experienced, trained personnel. To contact Securitas, call 213-580-8825 or visit www.Securitas.com.

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