Serving the communities of Valley Springs, Burson and Wallace
Spring Valley builder plans to host town hall meeting
A town hall meeting to discuss the proposed Spring Valley project
has been scheduled for Oct. 13.
Ryan Voorhees’ concept for the project on the Grace Ponte Ranch
was outlined at a July 13 Valley Springs Chamber of Commerce meeting.
Voorhees is the president and
owner of CRV Enterprises
The 455-acre parcel is located between Lime Creek Road, South Petersburg Road, Hogan Dam Road and the Valley Springs Public Utility District Treatment Plant.
The initial plan designates 45 acres as Public Service and Roads, including sites for a fire station as well as an elementary school site adjacent to the Calaveras County Water District’s proposed multi-use project; 225 acres of high, medium and low density residential, including 31/2 acres of multi-family residential; 48 acres of commercial including a hotel/conference center site; and 136 acres of open space, including a 2-1/2-acre neighborhood park. In all, 1,100 homes could be constructed.
One aspects of the conceptual plan is to provide a parkway that could
eventually connect Highways 12 and 26 and relieve congestion at the
four-way stop downtown. The
development will be accessed by a new road that connects Hogan Dam Road
with Lime Creek Road near the
intersection of South Petersburg Road.
The public forum is
scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 13 at Sheng Chi Kung Fu, located at 139
Main St. In addition to receiving input from the public, project
officials will be available to answer questions. Snacks and drinks will
be available and a children’s playroom is onsite.
For more information,
call (209) 483-6883.
Descendants of Daniel and Martha Burson unveil a memorial stone recognizing the couple's importance to the community bearing their name.
First-ever celebration of Burson's founding a success
By Nick Baptista
The west Calaveras community of Burson celebrated its roots
Saturday with a solemn ceremony in the morning at the gravesite of the
town’s founder and a gathering later in the day on a green lawn near
Daniel Smith Burson’s original homestead.
Organized by the Wallace/Burson Association, the first-ever
Burson Founders Day began at 11 a.m. with a memorial dedication to
Burson and his wife Martha at Harmony Grove Cemetery in nearby Lockeford.
The first-ever Founders Day came nearly 121 years after Burson
filed the official plat of the townsite of Burson with the county in
Burson’s descendants had the honor of unveiling the memorial
stone, which acknowledges Burson as the founder of the town bearing his
name and recognizes that his wife Martha is buried in an unmarked grave
The ceremony included Kris Krug on the bagpipes playing
“Highland Cathedral” and “Amazing Grace” and an honor guard
composed of members of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War and
the Amador Mountaineers. Burson was a Civil War veteran.
Wallace/Burson Association President Sal Manna made a
presentation on “The Life and Legacy of Daniel Smith Burson.”
Supervisors Bill Claudino and Merita Callaway read proclamations from
the area’s governmental leaders and Manna read an 1890 poem,
“Memorial Hymn” by former Burson Postmaster Job F. Thomas.
The festivities shifted to the grounds at Moore’s Karate in
Burson where several hundred people came to enjoy entertainment provided
by the Calaveras High School choir, martial arts demonstrations, and a
sampling of crafts, plants, wares, giveaways and foods from about 30
booths circling the grassy grounds.
In addition, a number of posters by area school children
depicting the beginning of Burson were on display.
Dakota Sims, a second-grade student at Jenny Lind Elementary, won
the grand prize for the posted contest for the second- and
third-graders, while Sadie McCamly, a Valley Springs Elementary School
fifth-grader, was the grand-prize winner for the fourth- through
sixth-graders. Third-grader Alec Brotherton and sixth-grader Katie Gore
finished second, while third-grader Brittney Seria and sixth-grader
MacKenzie Theiler finished third.
Manna said he was pleased with the turnout and next year’s
event promises to be bigger and better.
3 RVs, storage unit go up in flames
Shortly before 5 p.m. Thursday, fire crews were dispatched to Junction 26 RV & Mini Storage for a blaze.
Damage estimated at $30,000
Three recreational vehicles and a storage unit were damaged by a
fire reported at 4:37 p.m. Thursday at the Junction 26 RV and Mini
Storage at 1390 Country View Drive.
CDF sent one air attack plane, one helicopter, five engines and
two air tankers to the scene. Firefighters and equipment from Foothill,
Jenny Lind and San Andreas fire protection districts also responded to
the fire, which was parallel to Highway 26.
The blaze was
out by 5:45 p.m. CDF officials say the cause was undetermined and damage
is estimated at $30,000.
Andy Henkle owns the business.
The day before, firefighters were dispatched at 8:30 a.m. to a
pair of small roadside fires at Highway 26 and Hogan Dam Road on land
owned by Caltrans. The cause was undetermined.
Thirty minutes later on Wednesday, three small roadside grass
fires were reported on Highway 12 near the Zippy Mart in Valley Springs.
One of the fires grew to two acres before they were extinguished. Cause
of the fires was undetermined.
At 12:05 a.m. Sunday, Jenny Lind Fire and the CDF responded to a car and vegetation fire at Huckleberry Lane and Delin Way. Arson is suspected. The fire caused $2,000 in damage to a vehicle and burned less than one acre of grass.
Mary Oleson of Oakley participates in the grape harvest earlier this month at Bear Flag Vineyard.
Grape harvest under way in Calaveras vineyards
It’s harvest time in Calaveras County for the nectar of the
Bear Flag Vineyard in Jenny Lind the first weekend of the month
began harvesting Merlot grapes that will be crushed into wine. The
harvest at Bear Flag Vineyards continued the past weekend with Barberra
and Zinfandel grapes being picked and crushed.
Jim Green of Valley Springs Dentistry expects to harvest four to
five tons from his two acres in Jenny Lind.
He said this year’s crop is about average.
Five tons will produce about 10 barrels or 3,000 bottles of wine,
Green and Barbara Fox had more than a dozen friends and members
of the Antioch Rotary Club on hand for the Sept. 3 harvest. After a
morning of picking, Fox and Green treated their friends to a superb
Tyler, Kyle and Travis Caires
of Jenny Lind 4-H were seeking donations the past weekend to help
victims of Hurricane Katrina.
Valley Springs jumps to aid Hurricane Katrina victims
By Nick Baptista
Some Valley Springs area youngsters spent the Labor Day weekend
collecting donations to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina.
The Jenny Lind 4-H Club established donation tables in front of
Mar Val to collect money designated for “Disaster Relief” to the
Salvation Army at P.O. Box 4857, Jackson, MS 39296-4857.
“It’s looking good so far,” 4-H helper Lori Caires said on
Friday. “We have some really generous people. People who don’t have
a lot are putting in all of their change.”
Lori’s three sons Kyle, Travis and Tyler were manning the
tables and help later in the weekend was expected from other 4-H Club
The Salvation Army is also accepting donations over the phone by
Donations can be made to the American Red Cross at
Two Jenny Lind Fire Protection District firefighters are donating
more than money, they’re donating their time. Al Engle and Roy
Estakhri have been accepted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency
to assist in the relief efforts.
Jenny Lind Fire Chief Stacey Hebrard said Engle and Estakhri will
be leaving for a training course in Atlanta, Ga., as soon as they get
their gear together. The two men are signed up for 30 days, but the
assignment can last from 14 to 120 days, Hebrard said.
Two other Jenny Lind firefighters – Ross Estabrooks and Jason
Robitaille – could also be bound for the Gulf States to offer
assistance, Hebrard said. Estabrooks’ wife Debbie is going as a Red
Those trying to find the health and welfare
status of family members in the path of Hurricane Katrina have three
sources of help.
The Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network website at www.satern.org
has a form to be completed and will make attempts to contact as soon as
resources become available. It is important to note that contact
information be provided; otherwise it probably will not be processed. In
addition, names and addresses must be complete and, if possible, a point
of reference such as a crossroad provided.
It will probably be several weeks before any reply can be
Another source is www.gulfcoastnews.com.
They are compiling a database of family members and allowing people to
post queries and status of family members in an attempt for separated
families to make contact. Be alert to any attempts for scam artists to
misuse and take advantage of any information posted on a public source.
In addition, the American Red Cross has an on-line Family Links
Registry, or call 1-877-568-3317.
Preparing a quilt for President George W. Bush were, from left, Patti Chandler, Gail Belmont, Virginia Belmont, Jan Boli and Bert Gonzales.
President Bush to receive Valley Springs-made quilt
By Nick Baptista
A quilt produced in Valley Springs is expected to grace the Bush
White House in the near future.
Navy Special Warfare Group No. 3 based in San Diego made a
special request for a quilt similar to the Quilts of Valor produced by
Gail Belmont and members of the Loose Threads Quilt Guild of Valley
Belmont said the Navy Seals last week asked her to produce a
quilt for “a very special recipient.” She had a pattern in mind that
she had been saving, a “Lone Star” pattern, and on Saturday she
learned the special person was the former governor of the Lone Star
state and U.S. President George W. Bush.
The Seals wanted the quilt in time for the president’s trip
this past Tuesday to the Naval Air Station North Island in San Diego
where he commemorated the 60th anniversary of the victory
over Japan. The final touches were made on the quilt during a busy
weekend and it was shipped Monday via overnight service to San Diego.
However, the president had to cut his trip short due to Hurricane
Katrina and the quilt presentation was postponed.
New plans call for Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee to present
the quilt to the president.
In addition to the star pattern, the front of the quilt is
inscribed with “God Bless America” and “Land of the Free.”
Belmont said she believes the special request for the quilt was
made to let the president know “we stand behind you no matter what
Loose Threads and Belmont have shipped 65 similar quilts this
past year to service men and woman wounded in action in Afghanistan and
Iraq. Their goal is to produce 40 more before the end of the year.
Nationwide, the Quilt for Soldiers program has produced 2,200
quilts for wounded veterans, but it is estimated that 13,000 to 20,000
have been injured in the recent actions in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“I can’t think of a bigger honor” than making a quilt for
the president, said Belmont, who served in the U.S. Army from 1969-76
during the Vietnam War era.
In addition to Belmont, who was the machine quilter; Patti
Chandler was the piecer; Bert Gonzales and Virginia Belmont bound the
quilt and Jan Boli laid the label.
The label contains a quote from President Bush’s Sept. 20,
2001, address to Congress and the public: “Freedom and fear, justice
and cruelty, have always been at war, and we know that God is not
neutral between them.”
In addition, the label has the names and email addresses of those
who worked on the quilt, two Bible verses and a note that the Seals
present the quilt to the president with a note of thanks, “Thank you
for actively promoting freedom and justice for all. Sir, Operation
Enduring Freedom continues on our watch. God Bless America!”
Valley Springs woman arrested on suspicion of murdering her husband
Springs woman is in custody on suspicion of murdering her husband.
Peggy Casey, 66, of 6629 Evergreen Road, Valley Springs, was arrested
Tuesday evening at her residence after a preliminary investigation into
the shooting death of her husband, Frank Casey, 75, according to the
Calaveras County Sheriff’s Department.
say deputies were dispatched at 10:18 p.m. to the Evergreen Road house
for a shooting incident.
Casey was booked into Calaveras County Jail and is being held on
detectives are investigating the shooting.