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Lisa Lucke
6 days ago
For me, just thinking about a State or County Fair brings to mind fond childhood memories of hurtling through the air on the Scrambler, clattering through the fun house, and most vividly, the smell of goat manure in the morning. There really is nothing quite like it, except for possibly the smell of a mixture of pig, goat and cow manure, oh, around 4 p.m. on a 100-degree day. Oddly enough, it’s when I leave the animal exhibits that I can’t help but think about food.

More specifically, stick food.

The smell coming from the...

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Jerry Budrick
6 days ago
I was set to interview the interim replacement for Sutter Creek City Manager Sean Rabe a few months back, but I waited so long that it made more sense to interview the permanent hire.

The term “permanent,” when referring to this position, does not mean “until retirement.” Hopefully, it means more than six months, but almost always less than five years. A contentious issue like a subdivision application or a sewer rate increase can shorten the stay and an election might introduce the manager to a new council majority that would...

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Brent Parsons
2 weeks ago
I first met Allen on the basketball court. I would guess he crashed our game a decade ago judging by how big his son, Max, is now.

Allen learned, as I did 15 years earlier, that this Wednesday-evening basketball was not an open gym. He had to shoot with his son on a side hoop until the number of regular players dropped below 15 or someone was unselfish enough to let him play in a spot. That doesn’t happen often and I doubt it happened that night.

I remember a couple of things from his inaugural night: Max telling me how good...

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Lisa Lucke
2 weeks ago
Recently, on Geniusbook, a friend of mine groused about her teenager, who seems to be perpetually on mute. She can’t get a word out of him. The responses to her post were split pretty evenly when it came to what’s worse: verbal diarrhea or the silent treatment. Some moms complained of constant chatter and too much sharing. Others were equally frustrated with the silent treatment.

Of my four kids, I have one who never shuts it, one who rarely shuts it, one who is mostly quiet until he’s completely insane, and one quiet soul who I...

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Brent Parsons
4 weeks ago
One of the perks of this column is the freedom I have had in picking my subjects. Thus far, I have had a tolerable rejection rate — about one in six has said “no” and a few others have said “maybe later.” Whether I check back later is a question of if I want to appear desperate or pesty. I’d prefer to be neither. I choose who I know or think is interesting and then hope for the best. All 29 have met or exceeded expectations. My goal is to do 50 before deciding what to do next. The interviews have been a joy.

Although I have picked...

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Brent Parsons
06/20/2014 12:55 PM
In 1992, my family had been in Sutter Creek for three years. The charm of the town and its setting were not yet fading. They still aren’t. The only thing I’ve missed is the ocean, but that was in a package with the negatives of wind, fog and people. To be able to walk to work and support a family seemed too good to be true. At times, it almost was.

Sometime early in that year, Heidi Boitano asked me to run for city council. I did. I had seen and talked to Heidi in town and knew her brother, Louis, was on our city council before...

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Carolyn Schmitz
06/12/2014 2:36 PM
Artist Wendy Ward, The Mermaid Muse, invites you to connect with your inner muse through the use of art journaling in a six-week series, beginning June 26 through July 31, from 3 to 6 p.m., at Yoga Moment, in Buckhorn.

Although an art major in college, Ward felt she couldn’t make a living at it, and redirected her emphasis to business as an applications programmer, financial consultant and in marketing. Although her weekdays were filled with business, she was constantly drawn to art in her free time, and stated, “I have always had...

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Matthew Hedger
06/10/2014 2:50 PM
Today is Tuesday, June 10, the 161st day of 2014 with 204 to follow.

The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Neptune, Uranis and Venus. Evening stars Jupiter, Mars, Mercury and Saturn.

In 1652, silversmith John Hull, in defiance of English colonial law, established the first mint in America.

In 1692, Bridget Bishop was found guilty of the practice of witchcraft and hanged in Salem Village in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. She was the first colonist executed during the Salem witch trials,

In 1898, U.S. Marines invaded Cuba in...

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Via Press Release
06/09/2014 10:24 PM
It is officially the beginning of June. The Pinterest pages, Facebook feeds, and family magazine features are loaded up with all the activities you should do with your kid’s summer. AS. IF. As if we need more activities. MORE I say! As if I am sitting here, ok, really laying here in my end of school year coma, thinking, “OMG! I CANNOT wait to tackle that homemade moon sand recipe we will dye ourselves with the skin of organic vegetables, then shape our homemade sand into a perfect replica of the Millenium Falcon! ” Or, “Why yes, I... [Read more]
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Carolyn Schmitz
06/06/2014 11:11 AM
Christopher Petralli, of Morgan Stanley, continues to serve Amador County clients, offering investment advice and wealth management.

After receiving his degree at Miami University, Petralli began his career as an associate at Wells Fargo. His current position as a financial advisor at Morgan Stanley is based out of the Roseville office. He meets with his local investors regularly, at a Jackson location, two or three times a week. He stays involved within the community as a member of the Rotary, and as part of the membership...

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Matthew Hedger
06/05/2014 10:46 AM
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Matthew Hedger
05/31/2014 10:12 AM
The yeast extract left over from the manufacture of beer is considered a delicacy in Australia.

Tonya Harding was the first American ice skater to successfully land a triple axel in competition.

If you have a 'Sister Joseph's Nodule,' you have been diagnosed with belly-button cancer.

Hummingbirds live an average of 5 years. They are hatched from eggs that are so small that a penny would cover three of them. Hummingbirds are usually hatched in pairs in nests that average 1.5 inches in diameter.

The average age of a French...

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Jerry Budrick
05/30/2014 3:40 PM
Amador is a small county with a bumper crop of interview candidates. If I’m up to it and subjects are willing, this series could go for a while. I’m entering camping season, which limits my time at home for both interviewing and writing. I’m expanding my technical arsenal with a laptop to facilitate campsite composition. It is another step down a path I, and those that know me, never thought I would be on. Hopefully, my back page absences will be few. We are heading to the desert for two weeks.

Within the life stories are the...

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Carolyn Schmitz
05/30/2014 9:27 AM
Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

Sophia’s Well of Wisdom

Vision of Oneness, the Spring Weekend Workshop, begins on Saturday, May 31, with, “Wisdom of Meditation,” led by Rev. Patsy. On Sunday, June 1, “Living Nonduality,” will be led by Eugene Alliende. Pre-registration is required. All events are by donation. The inter-spiritual center is located at 270A Hanford Street, Sutter Creek. Contact Rev. Patsy Walker Fine, at 418-9003, or visit sophiaswell.org.

The Healing Word

Thursdays and Fridays, from 1 to 3...

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Brent Parsons
05/22/2014 2:00 PM
Some weeks ago, I wrote about an auto dealer still standing, Jeff Holman. One who isn’t was not only Amador’s largest, but also, in my opinion, the county’s most recognizable and active public figure.

The collapse of the auto industry and closing of the brand-spanking-new Prospect and Amador Toyota dealerships, in the fall of 2008, shocked the community by knocking a 25-year pillar off his footing. Some months ago, I asked Frank, as he was setting up to broadcast one of his son’s Argonaut basketball games, if he would give me an...

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Lisa Lucke
05/16/2014 12:07 PM
About the only times I’ve really spent any money on myself to get in shape throughout the years is for gym memberships and yoga. I think I’ve belonged to a gym three times in my adult life, for about a year each time. The first time was post-first baby, when I lived in Southern California. I joined a gym and had a one-time appointment with what was called a “fitness trainer,” and then I was on my own. I did the circuit three times a week and then hit the treadmill. It was a yawn, but I slowly got myself back into shape.

Fast...

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Brent Parsons
05/08/2014 2:13 PM
I moved to Sutter Creek in 1989, the same year a group of citizens from Amador and Calaveras began holding potlucks on revolving host decks. The meetings grew out of a presentation on foothill growth by Steve McNiel, a planning professor from UC Davis. After the talk, sponsored by the Amador Association of University Women, Steve Elias, a motivated attendee, asked in a letter printed in the Ledger Dispatch for others sharing his concerns to call him. Several did.

The newly formed group, The Foothill Conservancy for Responsible...

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Scott Oneto
05/06/2014 8:56 AM
I have found that many people have never given a whole lot of thought to the tiny green balls that are scattered on pasta, chicken piccata and other Italian dishes. These little olive-green delicacies are known as Capers or Capparis spinosa. Depending upon the part of the plant that is used, a caper can be considered a vegetable (the edible shoots) or an herb (the processed buds). Most often, the part of the caper plant used in cooking is the immature bud, picked at perfection and then pickled in brine or vinegar, where it is... [Read more]
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Lisa Lucke
04/30/2014 11:33 AM
Sometimes, the lines that define the relationships around our house get a little blurry. Like a recent Sunday morning, when I served up a hot breakfast, including cinnamon rolls, to my husband and daughter. Breakfast for three. Easy, right?

The patrons sat down at the table, side by side, eyeing one another’s portion of potatoes, looking disgruntled. She stared at his plate out of her peripheral vision. Knowing what she was up to, he did the same thing to her plate. I ignored them. Until this:

Dad: You got more sauce on your...

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