Eppie’s Race is Back On

Story and photo by Susan Maxwell Skinner  |  2019-07-11

Great American Triathlon organizers are business partners Ken McGuire (left) and Dan Niccum.

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Businessman Ken McGuire last year feared was the end of an era when the “final” Eppie’s Great race was announced.

Co-founder of Innovations Health Systems – a network of heath-centered services and facilities in the Bay Area – McGuire (52) never actually competed in the annual event.

“I felt it was too great a tradition to let die,” he explains. “People came here from all over the USA to compete. Eppie’s was a boost for our national profile. We Sacramentans talked about the great race in the same conversation as Kings Basketball games and the California International Marathon. It helped charities. For all sorts of good reasons, keeping Eppie’s alive seemed critical.”

Now, thanks to McGuire, the world’s oldest triathlon has not quite ended, after all. Steered by the Sacramento businessman, the contest that the late Eppie Johnston began in 1974 has new branding. From the starting gun July 20, and for future summers, it will be run as The Great American Triathlon. The endurance epic will again follow the American River Parkway in foot, bicycle and kayak stages. While benefitting charities, it will endure as one of our area’s great summer events.

Via many meetings and phone calls, McGuire persuaded major Eppie’s supporters to keep paddling. In January, Sacramento County gave approval for the new parkway event.

Capital City Road Management will continue to manage the race. Former volunteers have rallied, and more than 20 companies have agreed to co-sponsor. McGuire’s business partner, Carmichael resident Dan Niccum, is onboard for brand development.

The new race will continue restauranteur Eppie Johnston’s philanthropic drive that raised more than a million dollars for non-profits over 48 years. “Our fundraising for the American River Parkway Foundation and children’s health charities is important,” confirms McGuire. “We hope to write big checks for good causes. But above all, we want to maintain a community event that defines summer in Sacramento.”

The world’s oldest triathlon will set a cracking pace through the accustomed river stretches of Arcade, Carmichael, Fair Oaks and Rancho Cordova. Starting line is at William Pond Park. Athletes will follow a six-mile route to the Guy West Bridge near CSUS, and then grab bikes to pedal 12 miles to the beach below Sunrise Boulevard (Fair Oaks). There is no swimming stage; contestants will board kayaks, brave the San Juan Rapids and follow the river downstream to Rancho Cordova. Thousands of supporters, onlookers and volunteers traditionally cheer athletes through all stages. Après-race celebrations will include live music, food trucks and a beer garden beside the River Bend Park finish line.

Entry in the Great American Triathlon costs $40 for athletes 18 and under; $150 for adult competitors; junior relay is $110; adult relay is $225. Tandem water craft admission is $300. Contestants may use rented kayaks. For information, go to www.greatamericantriathlon.com

West Sac Play Night Splash

City of West Sacramento Press Release  |  2019-07-19

Kids get to make a splash! Photo courtesy of City of West Sacramento

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) – Join West Sac Play at the Spray Ground in Bridgeway Lakes Community Park Friday, July 26th. Bring a picnic blanket, towel, and don't forget the sunscreen.

The event sponsor Snowie King will be there ready with some delicious frozen treats along with North Border Taco. The event is free to attend, donations will be accepted, and a portion of the proceeds from your drink purchases will be donated to our 2019 fundraising goal to provide shade structures to 4 local parks: Alyce Norman, Pheasant Hollow Park, Sam Combs Park, Bridgeway Island Park.

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WOODLAND, CA (MPG) – Yolo County shines once again with its multi-award-winning California State Fair exhibit which provides State Fair attendees a glimpse into the beauty found throughout the county. This year, the exhibit was recognized for “Best Use of Marketing”, Best Agricultural Presentation” and received Second Place for “Best Exhibit-Professionally Built”. 

Yolo County is the perfect intersection of picturesque rolling hills and unique venues which allow the county’s exhibit to embody this year’s State Fair theme, “Picture yourself in...”. The booth features photos inspired by the county’s agricultural landscape and specialized destinations, with an old-fashioned flash camera (by today’s smart phone standards) as the centerpiece. The lens of the camera displays a video highlighting Yolo County’s most scenic and iconic sites. Additionally, art donated from local artists lends another perspective to the concept of picturing yourself in Yolo County. 

As always, the booth features a wide range of food and beverages produced in Yolo County. Stop by to see the products of the numerous Yolo County breweries, wineries, olive oil producers and food venues that generously donated to the exhibit’s bounty. 

“Our county is home to many charming and varied spots, found in our rural and urban landscapes as well as in agriculture, that naturally draw visitors in to take pictures,” said Yolo County Board of Supervisors Chair Don Saylor. “We know State Fair goers will be able to picture themselves visiting all that we have to be proud of in Yolo County.” 

The State Fair is open now and runs through July 28.

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SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Anyone with ideas, suggestions, or concerns about the administration and oversight of California’s business taxes is invited to attend the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration’s (CDTFA) annual Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights meeting in Sacramento July 25, 2019.

Date: Thursday, July 25, 2019

Time: 9:00 a.m.

Location: California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, 450 N Street, 1st Floor, Room 122, Sacramento, California 95814

The meeting will be held to receive public input regarding business taxes including sales and use taxes, and special taxes and fees such as fuel taxes, tobacco taxes, and cannabis taxes. Those interested in attending are invited to contact the Taxpayers’ Rights Advocate Office by calling toll-free 1-888-324-2798, or by visiting us online.

Enacted in January 1989, the Harris-Katz California Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights ensures that the rights of California Taxpayers are protected during the assessment and collection of sales taxes. The Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights was expanded in 1993 to include special tax programs such as environmental fees, fuel taxes, and tobacco taxes.

The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) administers California’s sales and use, fuel, tobacco, alcohol, and cannabis taxes, as well as a variety of other taxes and fees that fund specific state programs. CDTFA-administered programs account for over 25 percent of all state revenue. California’s essential services, such as public safety, transportation, health, libraries, schools, social services, and natural resource management programs, are directly supported by these taxes and fees.

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SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Two Sacramento area STEM learning institutions, the Aerospace Museum of California and Powerhouse Science Center are coming together to bring guests Apollopalooza, a family-friendly event that will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. This special event will take place at the Aerospace Museum of California on Saturday, July 20 from 10:00AM-4:00PM.                               

Highlights of Apollopalooza include the premiere of the Aerospace Museum of California’s new Moon Mission Virtual Reality Experience, exclusive Apollo artifact tours, a NASA Mad Science show, and several activities hosted by both the Museum and Powerhouse Science Center in the exhibit hall. A Smithsonian affiliate, the Aerospace Museum of California will also feature exclusive Smithsonian programming and NASA films in the Museum’s theater.

Michael Galane, Executive Director for the Powerhouse Science Center stated, “We’re excited to partner with the Aerospace Museum of California and SAFE Credit Union to bring this one-of-a-kind event to the Sacramento area. Tom Jones, Executive Director for the Aerospace Museum of California noted: “Northern California has a rich aerospace heritage and having these two STEM learning centers collaborate together to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing will make this a memorable event for the greater Sacramento community.”

Members of both Aerospace and Powerhouse are offered deeply discounted tickets to the event. Community partner SAFE Credit Union is also offering a special discount to their members. Tickets to the event are available for purchase online at aerospaceca.org/tickets.

Apollo 11 was launched from the Kennedy Space Center on July 16th, 1969 with a crew of three astronauts: Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, and Michael Collins. Four days later, on July 20th, Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon were broadcast worldwide on live television. Armstrong’s quote, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” as he stepped on the surface for the first time is remembered as one of the most iconic moments in NASA history. The crew landed in the Pacific Ocean on July 24th, 1969, fulfilling President John F. Kennedy’s national goal: to land a man on the moon and safely return him before 1970.

About the Aerospace Museum of California: Experience aviation history and aerospace potential in an interactive setting. With a 4-acre air park and rotating exhibits, families can engage with our STEM activities for all ages and let their imagination soar. Learn more at aerospaceca.org

 

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SAN FRANCISCO, CA (MPG) - Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is sending postcards to more than 240,000 customers encouraging them to update their mobile number, email and other key information so the company can contact them in advance should it become necessary to temporarily turn off power for safety this fire season.

These customers, who live throughout PG&E’s service area, have incomplete or no contact information on file.

It is important that all customer information is up to date so PG&E can share important wildfire safety alerts. In addition to notifying customers directly, PG&E also will provide outage updates and information through channels such as social media, local news, radio and the pge.com website.

“With the 2019 wildfire season now upon us, we all need to be better prepared to stay emergency-ready and to keep our families and friends safe,” said Laurie Giammona, PG&E’s senior vice president and chief customer officer. “We are asking our customers to be sure we have their latest contact information so we can do our best to reach them in advance of a potential Public Safety Power Shutoff event.”

The Public Safety Power Shutoff program is one of many additional precautionary safety measures in response to the 2017 and 2018 wildfires that the company is putting in place as part of its Community Wildfire Safety Program intended to reduce wildfire threats and strengthen communities for the future.

Extreme weather threats can change quickly. PG&E’s goal, dependent on weather and other factors, is to send customer alerts through automated calls, texts and emails at 48 hours, again at 24 hours, and again just prior to shutting off power.

Besides updating their contact information to prepare for Public Safety Power Shutoffs, PG&E encourages customers to do the following:
Have an emergency plan for wildfires and discuss it with your friends, family and neighbors; Update or create a go bag or 72-hour kit that can be used if you need to evacuate; and clear defensible space around your home or business.

PG&E thanks the over 390,000 customers who have taken action to ensure they will receive its wildfire safety alerts since June 1, 2018. For customers who have not yet confirmed or updated their contact information, PG&E strongly encourages everyone to do so by visiting www.pge.com/mywildfirealerts or by calling the PG&E contact center at 1-866-743-6589.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 23,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com/ and www.pge.com/en/about/newsroom/index.page.

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SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Thanks to Democrats’ latest gas tax increase, Californians filling up their gas tanks are noticing some extra pain at the pump. With this 6 cent per gallon increase, our state is now home to highest gas taxes in the country.

You’d expect that with all that extra tax revenue, Californians would be driving on some of the best roads in America.

You’d be wrong.                                                                         

The American Society of Civil Engineers gave California roads a “D” on its most recent infrastructure report card, while Transportation for America called California’s roads the second-worst in the nation.

Weeks ago, Assembly Republicans called for a one-year delay in the tax increase.

Not a single Democrat supported the proposal. Instead they doubled down on a regressive tax that’s not delivering results.

This is an ongoing effort to deliver accurate and factual information about the activities of your local representatives in Sacramento, and how their votes either improve or negatively impact the lives of Californians. For more information, please contact Jim Stanley at (916) 319-2075 or Jim.Stanley@asm.ca.gov.

 

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SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - The Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District (Sac Metro Air District) has successfully obtained millions of dollars through the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Cap-and-Trade program for fiscal year 2018/2019, which will be used to meet the goals of AB617, the Community Air Protection Plan. This plan seeks to reduce emissions in low-income, disadvantaged communities, whose residents are disproportionally affected by air pollution.

The Sac Metro Air District pioneered mobile source incentive programs, which create innovative and creative approaches for deployment of lower-emitting vehicle and equipment technologies and are now duplicated throughout the United States. “With this latest round of funding, the District will use its expertise to build upon its successes identifying and tailoring programs that assist businesses, government agencies, nonprofits, schools and other entities with zero emission incentive projects,” said Sacramento County Supervisor and California Air Resources Board member Phil Serna who also serves on the District’s Board.

This money will supplement current funding that protects the health of regional residents by reducing air pollution emissions and greenhouse gases through incentive programs.

“With the help of our regional partners, and under the leadership of Supervisor Serna who represents us on the CARB Board, the District has been successful in advocating for Cap-and-Trade funds for the Sacramento region,” said District Board Chair and City of Sacramento Vice-Mayor Eric Guerra. “Projects that were implemented with Cap-and-Trade money such as electric school buses and Our Community CarShare reduce emissions, protect public health and expand the growing number of clean mobility options in the region, particularly for underserved communities.”

The over $14 million dollars that will be administered by the Sac Metro Air District will result in hundreds of projects, which will protect public health and improve regional air quality by reducing emissions in the Sacramento region. The District has also asked CARB to add flexibility to its existing program guidelines in an effort to expand funding opportunities to those that do not currently qualify.

“It is important to me that we put these funds to good use,” said District Board Vice-Chair and Sacramento County Supervisor Sue Frost. “By working with CARB to expand the guidelines, we can aid businesses in taking on the costly burden of upgrading equipment that is less harmful to our air quality.”

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SAN DIEGO AND LOS ANGELES, CA (MPG) - Leading experts in public health and vector pest control released an explosive report showing an explosion in the rodent population in California cities across the state and a spike in dangerous diseases such as Typhus. 

"California is being overrun by rodents – and without immediate emergency action by state and local government, we face significant economic costs and risk a public health crisis," said Carl DeMaio, chairman of Reform California.

Among the findings:

California is experiencing a massive spike in its rodent population that is both measured by available data sets and observed by field personnel;

The increase in California’s rodent population is not explained by environmental factors – but is directly related to the decision by some government officials to ban effective rodent control methods and a spike in the state’s homeless population;

Rodent infestations are fueling an increase in reported cases of dangerous diseases such as Typhus – current rate of increase in cases raises concern regarding possible public health epidemic.

The report also outlines 4 recommendations for remediation framed by the expert panel, including:

Declare a Public Health Emergency, Work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and require local governments conduct immediate assessments;

Require remediation plans be formulated and executed by local governments;

Launch a public education campaign for businesses and residents to mitigate risk factors;

Oppose and reject Assembly Bill 1788 – a misguided attempt to ban best practice pest control tools that will be needed to fight the rodent infestation

"Instead of acting to address this developing crisis, California state lawmakers are just days away from passing legislation (AB1788) to ban the best rodent control tools and methods available and would require use of less effective so-called green alternatives. It’s madness!” DeMaio concluded.

Formed in 2003 by former San Diego City Councilmember Carl DeMaio, Reform California is dedicated to holding state and local government accountable and fighting costly and unfair taxes, mandates, and fees because working families cannot afford a higher cost of living — and state and local politicians already have enough of our money. For more information, visit reformcalifornia.org

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Donate Three, Non-Perishable Food Items and Get in for Free

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - As part of its ongoing community giving efforts, SMUD is sponsoring Giving Mondays at the Fair, an effort to collect needed items for the Elk Grove Food Bank. SMUD Giving Mondays at the Fair will accept three non-perishable, non-expired items per person in exchange for a free ticket into the California State Fair before 3 p.m. The first 5,000 people in the gates will also receive a free drawstring backpack.

“This partnership is a great way to give back to those in our community who need it most,” said Rhonda Staley-Brooks, SMUD’s community development manager. “Last year, this effort collected 28,000 pounds of food, and this year we hope to surpass that. It’s these types of community efforts that help lift up our entire community and we’re glad to be a part of it.”

SMUD Giving Mondays at the Fair will be on Monday, July 15th and Monday, July 22nd. Visit the booth by the Blue Gate to drop off your food items and receive a free ticket to the Fair.

The Elk Grove Food Bank is in need of the following items: Canned Meat (Chicken or Tuna), Peanut Butter, Disposable Adult Briefs, Ensure, Baby Diapers, Socks – All Sizes, Canned Fruit, Canned Veggies, Soup, Beans, Mac and Cheese, Pasta, Boxed Mashed Potatoes, Packaged Rice, Top Ramen and Cereal.

For more information about SMUD Giving Mondays at the Fair, visitcastatefair.org/smudgivingmonday, and to learn more about SMUD’s community giving, visit smud.org/en/in-our-community.

As the nation’s sixth-largest community-owned, not-for-profit, electric service provider, SMUD has been providing low-cost, reliable electricity for more than 70 years to Sacramento County and small adjoining portions of Placer and Yolo Counties. SMUD is a recognized industry leader and award winner for its innovative energy efficiency programs, renewable power technologies, and for its sustainable solutions for a healthier environment. SMUD’s power mix is about 50 percent non-carbon emitting. For more information, visit SMUD.org.

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