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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.


Localvore: The buzz about bees

Final exam week at the College of the Redwoods ended on Friday. The students have taken their tests, so now it’s your turn. Here’s a word problem from Localvore 101:

You live in town but your street is tucked away, out of the hubbub and congestion of the main drag. Lot sizes are large, and many of your neighbors have fruit trees, flowers, and big vegetable gardens. One morning while walking the dog, you notice a swarm of bees gathering around the limb of one of your neighbor’s apple trees.  What should you do?


Volunteers are crucial to libraries

Localvore: My New England character

With the warm weather we had last weekend, I succumbed to the itch and added more vegetables to the garden.

I went a little wild and planted Asian Long Beans in the tiny greenhouse we built on the sunny side of our house. Not being a confident gardener, I have not checked the beans since. I use the “plant-and-run” method.  The joy I get from gardening doesn’t come from daily forays into the fields to see how my garden grows. I like the concept of raising my own vegetables more than the practice.

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Del Norte Triplicate:

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P.O. Box 277
Crescent City, CA 95531

(707) 464-2141

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