Photos by Trina L. Drotar and courtesy CHP
WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) – When they woke on the morning of Friday, November 16, the 46 men and women who arrived for final inspection spent their last morning as California Highway Patrol cadets. The class of 43 men and 3 women received their stars in a ceremony filled with pomp, circumstance, and a lot of fun.
Poor air quality had cancelled the cadets’ run to the state capitol earlier in the week, and the final inspection had to be moved from the quad into the dining hall, and the emergency vehicle operator course (EVOC) demonstration was also cancelled, but none of those things dampened the spirit and the joy shared by cadets and their family and friends upon finishing a grueling six months at the state’s only CHP Academy.
Among the graduates was Margarito Meza, the first graduate in the Law Enforcement Candidate Scholars (LECS) program at Sacramento State which began in 2017 to prepare college students from all disciplines for careers as sworn law enforcement officers at the local and state level. Program director Shelby Moffatt and a large group of LECS students were on hand to support Meza. Four are currently in the CHP Academy and are expected to graduate in 2019.
Early arrivals toured the Academy’s museum and learned the history of the CHP and its role in popular culture. Timelines, motorcycles, including a rare 1941 model, and communications equipment spanning several decades are on display in the museum which is open to visitors Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:45 p.m. and is free of charge.
Not free were the hours of intense physical and mental training that cadets endured during their six months away from family and friends. Cadets live on the West Sacramento campus for the duration of their training and education which includes a host of courses from basic Spanish to marksmanship to how to perform field sobriety tests. They must pass the EVOC driver training, attain certification in arrest techniques, and keep on top of their physical training. During the ceremony, a short film created by the graduating class provided family and friends a glimpse of life during the past six months at the Academy.
Prior to the ceremony in which cadets received their badges, they underwent their final inspection. Photos were snapped and hugs were given to cadets for a few minutes before the inspection began. Commissioner Warren Stanley, Deputy Commissioner Scott Silsbee, Assistant Commissioners Amanda Ray and Nick Norton, and Captain James Mann greeted each cadet, moving through the ranks, shaking hands, and providing encouraging words to each.
In that group was Erik Rodriguez of West Sacramento whose family was joined by several of his military buddies who had flown in from Texas for his special day. The 34-year old veteran was honored with a plaque for being the class’s most inspirational cadet, and he was recognized for his work as one of the company commanders. He will report to the San Francisco Bay Area for his first assignment as an officer.
Graduates are required to report to their first assignments within ten days and are sent where the greatest need is so many were sent to the southern part of the state. Cadets select up to three possible choices and are never first stationed in Sacramento.
Perhaps the brightest smiles to be found were from Cortez Sanders of Sacramento, his parents, and his extended family. His proud father, Bennett, was also recognized during the ceremony as he is a CHP employee. Sanders’ mother, Adrienne, said that she is very proud of her son and all the work he put into becoming an officer. It was his father who held the honor of pinning the badge on his son, one of the traditions that did occur outside as is custom.
Cortez will report to Redwood City for his first assignment and will be joined there by fellow Sacramentan David Waggoner who was honored as outstanding athlete. Also headed to Redwood City are Trevor Gossett of Sacramento and David Tran of Elk Grove.
For additional information, visit: https://www.chp.ca.gov/chp-careers/officer/life-in-the-academy. For additional information about the LECS program, visit: https://www.csus.edu/hhs/lecs/.
THE MOST FAMILY-FRIENDLY, ACTION-PACKED MOTOR SPORT IN THE WORLD RACES BACK INTO SACRAMENTO
SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Unexpected, unscripted and unforgettable! Monster Jam®, the most action-packed motorsports experience for families in the world today, returns to Sacramento with a new level of high-flying, four-wheel excitement! Be prepared for another high-octane weekend of Monster Jam Triple Threat Series events featuring six different competitions of speed, racing and freestyle stunts at the Golden 1 Center from January 18–20, 2019.
Featuring eight of the most intense athletes of Monster Jam, Central Valley fans will witness a fierce battle for the championship with each Triple Threat Series competitor contending in customized high-powered vehicles: Monster Jam Speedsters, Monster Jam ATVs and of course, the iconic Monster Jam trucks in six events sure to leave fans on the edge of their seats.
Monster Jam drivers are trained, world-class male and female athletes who have mastered not only the physical strength and mental stamina needed to compete, but the vital dexterity to control 12,000-pound machines capable of doing backflips, vertical two-wheel skills and racing at speeds up to 70 miles per hour to produce jaw-dropping, live motor sports action seen around the world. Now across all Monster Jam events, fans in every city will have the chance to vote for the winner in the two-wheel and freestyle competitions by real-time, in-stadium fan voting on their smartphones.
Fans also have the unparalleled opportunity to get up close and personal to their favorite Monster Jam trucks and drivers at the Monster Jam® Pit Party pre-show experience for photos & autographs.
Tickets are affordably priced for the whole family with seats starting at just $20 each. Pit Passes available to purchase for $15 each.
Tickets and Pit Passes will be available for purchase online at Ticketmaster.com, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 or visit the Golden 1 Center Box Office. Ticket prices are subject to change, venue/ticketing fees may apply.
For all the latest news, announcements and updates, be sure to watch the Monster Jam 2019 Season Kickoff Show live streaming on www.MonsterJam.com.
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Society for the Blind, a Sacramento-based nonprofit serving blind and low vision people in Northern California, has received a grant from Anthem Blue Cross and CareMore Foundations to create opportunities for individuals to participate in the National Fitness Challenge, an initiative founded by the United States Association of Blind Athletes and the parent Foundation of Anthem Blue Cross and CareMore. Society for the Blind is one of 17 organizations across the nation that is participating in the National Fitness Challenge and is using grant funding to offer adaptive yoga classes, walking groups, running clinics and other sports and fitness activities that can help people who are blind or low-vision to maximize healthy lifestyles. These activities will be offered over the course of eight months to help hundreds of youth and adults to increase physical fitness levels and live healthier lives.
“The goal of the National Fitness Challenge is to help people with visual disabilities to live more active lifestyles,” said Shari Roeseler, executive director, Society for the Blind. “The program launched during Blindness Awareness Month in October, and through May 31, 2019, will highlight what people with visual disabilities can do, rather than what they cannot do. We are lucky to live in an age where a person with vision loss can achieve most anything they set their mind to doing, and we are grateful to Anthem Blue Cross Foundation and CareMore Foundation for helping us to empower this year’s participants.”
This year’s challenge integrates technology and social media to inspire participants to set goals, create team environments and encourage leadership. Each participant has been provided with a Fitbit Flex 2 wearable – a universal way to measure activities, calories burned and number of steps taken. Participants also have the opportunity to utilize Fitbit Coach, which is a personalized training app that provides adaptive video workouts and audio coaching. Foundation grant funding is being used to provide Fitbits, fitness and nutritional instruction, performance prizes as well as technical and financial support for all participants.
“Research has consistently shown that individuals who participate in regular physical activity to improve their health have higher energy levels, lower risk of health-related diseases, improved psychological health, and lower rates of depression and anxiety,” said Ricardo Young, CareMore Health Medical Director. “We are proud to support members of the Society for the Blind through our collaboration with the National Fitness Challenge, and to create access to activities supporting healthier individuals and stronger communities.”
More than half of those who are blind or low vision in the United States do not participate in even a limited physical fitness routine, mostly due to barriers to accessible fitness or misconceptions about their abilities. Individuals of all abilities should have equal opportunities to engage in activities that improve health outcomes, so the National Fitness Challenge aims to increase access to fitness and health for blind and low vision people.
“Anthem Blue Cross Foundation is committed to removing barriers and increasing access to critical programs and services that help individuals and communities to lead healthier lives,” said Dr. Barsam Kasravi, Interim Anthem Blue Cross Medicaid Plan President. “We are proud of our Foundation’s ongoing support of people with visual disabilities and are confident that this support will go a long way in helping Californians to improve their overall wellness while enjoying the physical and emotional benefits of exercise and group sports.”
Since 2011, the parent Foundation of Anthem Blue Cross and CareMore has provided $1.3 million in grant funding to U.S. Association of Blind Athletes for the National Fitness Challenge initiative and has impacted thousands of Americans with visual disabilities by partnering with 40 different agencies across the country. To learn more about the National Fitness Challenge, visit www.usaba.org/NationalFitnessChallenge.
For more than 60 years, Society for the Blind has created innovative ways to empower individuals living with low vision or blindness to discover, develop and achieve their full potential. Society for the Blind has grown from a dedicated group of volunteers to a nationally recognized agency and the only comprehensive rehabilitative teaching center that provides services for a 27-county region of northern California. The nonprofit provides low-vision eye care, life and job skills training, mentorship, and access to tools to maintain independence for more than 5,000 youth, adults and seniors experiencing vision loss each year. For more information: SocietyfortheBlind.org.
Mike Wolfe, Frank Fritz, and their team are excited to return to California! They plan to film episodes of the hit series AMERICAN PICKERS throughout the region in March 2019!
AMERICAN PICKERS is a documentary series that explores the fascinating world of antique “picking” on History. The hit show follows Mike and Frank, two of the most skilled pickers in the business, as they hunt for America’s most valuable antiques. They are always excited to find sizeable, unique collections and learn the interesting stories behind them.
As they hit the back roads from coast to coast, Mike and Frank are on a mission to recycle and rescue forgotten relics. Along the way, the Pickers want to meet characters with remarkable and exceptional items. The pair hopes to give historically significant objects a new lease on life, while learning a thing or two about America’s past along the way.
Mike and Frank have seen a lot of rusty gold over the years and are always looking to discover something they’ve never seen before. They are ready to find extraordinary items and hear fascinating tales about them.
AMERICAN PICKERS is looking for leads and would love to explore your hidden treasure. If you or someone you know has a large, private collection or accumulation of antiques that the Pickers can spend the better part of the day looking through, send us your name, phone number, location and description of the collection with photos to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 855-OLD-RUST.
Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians Program Now Serving 4 Counties
WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - The Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians announced today that they will be expanding Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to Yolo County starting today.
“We are excited to be expanding the program to Yolo County,” said Tribal Chairperson Regina Cuellar. “Every tribal family needs to have access to resources. As of today, our Tribal TANF will now be able to help those Native American families in need from Yolo County.”
Yolo County’s Tribal TANF offices will initially share its space with Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency in West Sacramento. Those interested in Tribal TANF services in Yolo County can contact (888) 688-6816 to schedule an intake appointment at either 500 Jefferson Boulevard, West Sacramento or 25 N. Cottonwood Street, Woodland. In the coming months, Tribal TANF hopes to open its own offices in West Sacramento and Woodland.
“These services are available for the neediest tribal families,” said Executive Director Daniel Delgado. “We would not be able to provide services throughout the Sacramento Valley region and expand into Yolo County if not for the generosity, leadership, and support from the Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians.”
The TANF program, which is time limited, assists families with children when the parents or other responsible relatives cannot provide for the family's basic needs. The program provides educational development, career development, vocational training, child care, transitional services, teen pregnancy prevention, and parenting skills classes as well as monthly cash assistance.
The Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians runs the Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program in El Dorado, Placer and Sacramento counties. The program serves hundreds of needy Native American families with the goal of providing the tools and teaching skills to allow the families to achieve self-sufficiency.
"Our program incorporates culture and traditions into all services provided to strengthen Native American families and assist with issues which create barriers to self-sufficiency,” added Delgado.
The mission of the Shingle Springs Tribal TANF Program is to shift Native Americans from a pattern of chronic unemployment and welfare dependency to one of self-reliance and sustainable prosperity by developing a comprehensive web of support services and activities that form a pathway that income eligible and at-risk individuals and families can take as they make their journey toward self-sufficiency.
The Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians opened the Shingle Springs Tribal (TANF) Program in 2010.
Woodland, CA (MPG) - December 31, 2018 Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced that on December 26, 2018, his office’s grant team successfully assisted Fourth & Hope in obtaining funding to start a new transitional housing program. The grant will provide up to $1.5 million over a span of five years. This funding, awarded by the California Office of Emergency Services Transitional Housing (XH) Program, will provide community additional resources to effectively serve homeless victims of crime in Yolo County.
Fourth & Hope has provided emergency shelter services in Yolo County since 1985. For 33 years, Fourth & Hope has demonstrated a commitment to addressing homelessness and helping some of the most vulnerable members of our community re-establish themselves. The organization is dedicated to changing lives, providing supportive services, and working closely with partners throughout Yolo County.
The Homeless Opportunity and Positive Engagement (HOPE) Housing Program will use a “housing first” model, which prioritizes placement in housing as the first step towards assisting the homeless in working towards self-sufficiency. The grant will fund a full-time Case Manager to work directly with homeless clients, with support from existing Fourth and Hope staff and volunteers. Empower Yolo will partner with Fourth and Hope on the project to provide rapid re-housing services to help clients secure permanent housing. Funds will also be used for security deposit financial assistance and short-term rental assistance for up to three months after moving into a permanent housing arrangement. Fourth & Hope will collaborate with the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office, the Public Defender’s Office, the Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA), the Woodland Police Department’s Homeless Outreach Street Team (HOST), Empower Yolo, and other local nonprofits to execute this new program.
The proposal was written by Jake Whitaker and Kevin Clark, two members of the District Attorney’s grant team, in collaboration with Amara Pickens at Fourth & Hope. This initiative is part of ongoing efforts by the District Attorney’s Office to partner with nonprofits and other county agencies in order to help secure funding to start new programs that align with Yolo County’s Strategic Plan priorities. During the past year, the District Attorney’s Office has assisted with putting together funding proposals on behalf of Fourth and Hope, Empower Yolo, the Probation Department, the Health and Human Services Agency, and CommuniCare Health Centers. In 2017, the District Attorney’s Office partnered with Empower Yolo and Shores of Hope to fund a new emergency shelter in West Sacramento.
“We have an outstanding team of grant writers who are knowledgeable, dedicated and very creative,” said District Attorney Jeff Reisig. “We are always pleased to assist our partners particularly when it comes to important causes such as homelessness. We will continue to seek out partnerships with nonprofits and other county agencies to achieve shared policy goals.”
Fourth & Hope Executive Director Doug Zeck, Jr. expressed his appreciation for the community’s ongoing support of their mission. "We are excited to increase capacity to serve the most vulnerable neighbors within our community. The ability to develop strong partnerships is key to long lasting stability for those we serve. Projects like this turn hope for housing into a reality.”
Area Christians Counseled to Be Civil When Debating Religious Freedom
SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - About 600 Christians who gathered Friday, Nov. 16, to learn how to help preserve religious freedom in America were told to boldly declare their beliefs, but to debate civilly.
“And why must we do it civilly? Because the alternative is civil war,” said Dr. John Mark Reynolds, a Houston Christian college administrator and popular Evangelical speaker. “Not a shooting war, but a civil war of the soul, where we tear apart people … because we cannot compromise, because we cannot speak civilly, because we cannot just agree to disagree, but to boldly disagree.”
Reynolds, an expert on culture, society and philosophy, was the featured speaker in the first of three conferences bringing people of different faiths together to learn how to work side by side to preserve religious freedom. The series is presented by the Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, Rocklin’s William Jessup University and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This first conference was held at The Church of Jesus Christ’s Chapel on Temple Hill in Rancho Cordova.
To show how far the United States has come in its intolerance of religious views, Reynolds quoted former U.S. Pres. Teddy Roosevelt, who said at a national convention at the turn of the 20th century, “We stand at Armageddon and we battle for the Lord.”
“Can you imagine what the Washington Post would do to the presidential candidate who would dare to say that today?” Reynolds asked.
Reynolds drew from history – especially the Bolshevik revolution in Russia – to show the result of what happens to a culture and even entire nations when a society blocks religious rights.
“A culture will die when religious freedom dies,” he said, “because religious freedom is the first freedom.”
He told about his great-great-grandfather leaving his family and farm to volunteer to fight for “Mr. Lincoln and liberty” in the Civil War.
“When I am told that religious people should be quiet about their religious beliefs, I point out that my great-great-grandfather did not leave to fight for a secular state. But instead he marched to a song that said, ‘In the beauty of the lilies, Christ was born across the sea, with a glory in His figure that transfigures you and me, as He died to make men holy, let us’ – in the version I was taught – ‘die to make men free, His truth is marching on.’ … His motivation was purely religious.”
Asked how we can effectively engage in a discussion about religious freedom among our neighbors in California, where there are so many voices wanting to squelch these freedoms and often are uncivil in their tone, he told of the four-fold lesson he learned from his mother, who loved to debate:
In closing, Reynolds told how Daniel of the Old Testament endured 70 years in Babylon, thanks in part to three or four miracles, but mostly because he was smart and cagey, having learned how to live among the Babylonians without having to compromise his core values and beliefs.
Emphasizing the need for civility in our conversations and debates, Reynolds said, “Some of us are so obnoxious that we need the miracle ratio to be daily, not one every 20 years. But if you’re getting yourself thrown into a lion’s den every day, you’re doomed.”
The next conference in this “Preserving Religious Freedom” series is planned for March 2019. For more on the series, including videos from local leaders on the importance of religious freedom, go to http://jessup.edu/religious-freedoms-with-a-civil-voice/.
"A Simple Emigrant Christmas" on December 8
SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - California State Parks, Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park (SHP) and Friends of Sutter’s Fort are proud to present an interactive, fun and festive “Hands on History: A Simple Emigrant Christmas” event on Saturday, December 8, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Fort visitors will be delighted to have the opportunity to step back in time to the 1850s to enjoy festive holiday traditions from early in California’s early history when people from around the world passed through the Fort gates, each with their own customs and traditions for the holiday season. Friends and families are encouraged to visit the Fort to experience a variety of early holiday traditions and cultural activities similar to what early emigrants enjoyed. Complete with docents in period attire, entertaining vignettes will be set up that showcase a few of the diverse holiday scenes that will include food, music, decorations and other holiday traditions. As a special treat for kids of all ages, Father Christmas will be on-hand to hear holiday wishes.
Fort visitors can also participate in a number of hands-on activities such as dipping and creating their own holiday candles, crafting their own “keepsake” holiday ornaments – that include snowflakes, cornhusk angels and bird nests – plus making holiday cards with nib (or “dip”) pens and colored ink, grinding raw wheat into “Christmas flour,” singing Christmas carols with Fort musicians and more. And, of course, popular demonstrations of black powder weaponry in action will take place including the crowd-favorite firing of the Fort’s cannon. Additionally, Friends of Sutter's Fort Trade Store will be open, providing complimentary samples of gold nugget chocolates and offering a special holiday sale.
Admission costs for this special “Hands on History: A Simple Emigrant Christmas” event at the Fort are as follows: $7 per adult (18 and older), $3 per youth (ages 6 to 17) and free for children 5 and under. For more information, please call 916-445-4422 or visit www.suttersfort.org
Source: T-Rock Communications