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By the way: World Vision popular charity

Localvore: Using my noodle

By the way: Volunteers with wings

Localvore: A taste of the fair

Down at the fairgrounds, they’ve only just packed up the last of the midway amusement rides and swept up after the festivities last weekend.

Our family went on opening day. We toured the animal barns, rode the thrill rides, and put our 2-year-old on the green John Deere tractor for the obligatory photo op. Along with consuming my share of kettle corn and funnel cakes, I got a healthy dose of nostalgia with my fair experience.

I grew up in a small farming town in Pennsylvania, so I went with my family to at least three fairs every summer. It was a tradition that marked the end of summer vacation. Since we were townies, we had no animals to show.

My mom made spectacular jams and jellies, but she never entered anything. No, we went as outsiders. It may seem strange, but it was kind of a literary experience for us, something out of our tattered copy of  “Charlotte’s Web.” We reenacted the same story — the same family story — each time we went.  And of course, that story revolved around food.

My sister and I each got to choose a treat. I usually went straight for the cotton candy, in various unnatural shades.

The localvore: Southern comfort

By the way: Volunteer for all seasons

Death notices June 20, 2009

By the way: A volunteer and a church

About 11 years ago Jeanne Akers drove up from Southern California looking to live closer to her Del Norte County family. Recently widowed, Jeanne decided to join a local church and settle down.

She chose the United Methodist Church in Crescent City. The first time she went, Jeanne explained recently, “everybody was so busy, I finally asked if there was anything I could help them with.” That was the beginning of a church-oriented volunteer job that some weeks threatens to occupy all her waking hours except those she spends as a member of the Sutter Coast Hospital Auxiliary, a weekly chore.

Jeanne is the very embodiment of the faithful, hard-working church volunteer. There are millions of them across America. Of all faiths and beliefs, they maintain their churches and temples as they would their homes, with loving care.


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