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Craig Baracco
2 days ago
Breanna Lowther took top honors in the Amateur Woman’s A Division, including a 27’ 4” throw of the 16-pound Braemer stone. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

More than fifty competitors in various divisions took part in the Inaugral Mother Lode Highland Games, held last weekend at the Amador County Fairgrounds. Each participant tried their hand at the nine events of Scottish Heavy Athletics, which include the famous caber toss, hammer throw, Braemar Stone (an elongated shot-put) and throwing various weights for either height or distance to find the overall winner. Kilts are required of all competitors.

Christopher Hurts won the Amateur Men A Division, throwing the 56-pound heavy weight...

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Guest Commentator
2 days ago
Sobon Estate Syrah 2013 was named ‘Best of Show.’ Photo courtesy of Mike Dunne
Sobon Estate’s 2013 Syrah was awarded Best of Show in the 2016 Amador County Fair Wine Competition. Entries in the competition were up by 10 percent, to more than 500 wines. Awards given were 45 double-gold medals, 80 gold, 212 silver and 107 bronze. Other top awards included: Best White Wine — Andis Wines Amador County 2015 Sauvignon Blanc; Best Red Wine — Sobon Estate Amador County 2013 Syrah; Best Dessert/Other Wine —— Shendandoah Vineyards Amador County 2013 Black Muscat; and Best Blush Wine — Bray Vineyards Shenandoah Valley... [Read more]
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Lisa Lucke
2 days ago
Argonaut Softball players and coaches express their hopes. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

his summer is going to be hu-u-u-u-ge. First, our eldest son, my firstborn, graduated from high school. In August, he’ll be leaving the shoe and moving about three hours away, where he’ll be learning the fine art of working without a net. I have complete confidence in him, not that it will be a perfect transition with no missteps, but that he’ll recover nicely after each “splat” and learn as he goes. So that’s the first big thing happening this summer.

The other big thing is actually the absence of something: softball. Read my...

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Brent Parsons
2 days ago
Marlene and Kirk Wallace, along with Darryl Readshaw, are the buyers of Mace Meadow. Ledger Dispatch photo by Brent Parsons
I’ve submitted a rambling of disconnected thoughts a few times in the almost three years I’ve been a regular contributor to the Ledger Dispatch. Some readers would say I’ve done that many more times than I think. The bulk of my pieces have been interviews and there is still a rich crop to harvest. Those take scheduling and a significant block of time. Rejection is also part of that genre, which sometimes pushes me another way. Ginger Budrick has joined in the interview process and I’m certain, despite age-limiting her subjects, she... [Read more]
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Jerry Budrick
2 days ago
The Amador Transmission Pipeline at work. Ledger Dispatch file photo

After postponing a final decision on whether to cancel Phase 2 of the Amador Transmission Pipeline Project until its the next scheduled meeting, set for yesterday, June 23, the Amador Water Agency Board of Directors has spent the last 13 days mulling over some information that has come to them from various sources.

In a staff report prepared for the discussion, AWA General Manager Gene Mancebo wrote:

“During the June 9, 2016 Board meeting, staff was directed to investigate several possible project options. These included a...

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Eric Winslow
2 days ago
Dr. Dwight Jennings of Sutter Creek.
Sutter Creek dental orthopedist Dr. Dwight Jennings has some jaw-dropping news for people suffering from a host of common (and not so common) ailments ranging from Parkinson's disease to Tourette's syndrome. The astonishing news is this: Most of our troubles are in our mandibles. An emerging approach to a set of little-known therapies, called dental orthopedics, is proving to offer effective remedies to maladies which conventional medicine had failed to notice were associated with Temporomandibular Joint Disorders, or TMJ, as well as... [Read more]
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Eric Winslow
2 days ago
State Assemblyman Frank Bigelow (R) took 63.5 percent of the County's votes.
The following are the updated results of the June 7, 2016 Presidential Primary Election in Amador County. The run date of these results from the County Election Office was June 17. Fifty-nine precincts were counted. Of the county's 20,924 registered voters, actual ballots that were cast amounted to 12,836. Just under half of these votes came from registered Republicans; just over two-fifths from Democrats. The rest derived from voters registered with other parties or from unaffiliated citizens. The percentage of the county's... [Read more]
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John Tuttle
2 days ago

While recent rains this winter and spring have been a welcome sight in California, drought conditions continue to increase fire danger in the region prompting CAL FIRE to suspend all burn permits for outdoor residential burning within the State Responsibility Area of Sacramento, Amador, El Dorado and Alpine Counties. This suspension takes effect June 27, 2016 and bans all residential outdoor burning of landscape debris like branches and leaves.

“Conditions throughout our region have become such that it is no longer safe for the...

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John Tuttle
2 days ago

The California Department of Transportation and the City of Jackson continue to work on the project to realign the two intersections where State Route 49/88 meets Sutter Street, while also installing traffic signals at the new intersection.

Official hopes are that this safety project will be completed this summer. Crews are working primarily Monday through Friday, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and drivers should expect five-minute delays. No work is scheduled to be performed on weekends or holidays.

When complete, the project is...

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Jack Mitchell
2 days ago
Helicopters and numerous emergency personnel converged on the Camanche Fire, on Coal Mine Road, near Lake Camanche. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie

On Friday, June 17, at 2:45 p.m., reports of a grass fire in the area of North Camanche Parkway and Coal Mine Road were estimating the size of a new fire as being 1/4 acre, but a very short time later it had grown to 40 acres and was moving east.

The Amador County Sheriff’s Office launched a Code Red, notifying residents in the area of the danger, then began evacuating the area of North Comanche Parkway between Coal Mine and Buena Vista roads, including the area of Hidden Mesa. They closed the roadways in the area and routed...

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Via Press Release
2 days ago
Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership is now accepting applications for the 2016-2017 Program. Photo courtesy to the ALD

Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership is now accepting applications for the 2016-2017 Program.

The Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership (SNAP) is seeking enthusiastic, conservation-minded people to commit to a year of service to protect Sierra natural resources and sustainable communities.

Becoming a Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership member means doing great things for the Sierra Nevada, helping rural communities and the environment, and gaining invaluable skills and experience for developing careers and for life. During...

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Craig Baracco
1 week ago

The City of Jackson has adopted a budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

At its regular meeting Monday night, the Jackson City Council approved a spending plan for all city services from July 1, 2016 to June 30 of next year. The city’s general fund will spend a total $3,567,000 this year, down slightly from the $3.6 million spent last year. As always, the city’s police department takes the lion’s share, spending $1.5 million. Administration will cost the city $646,000 and maintenance of city streets another $367,000.

The city...

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Via Press Release
1 week ago

The following people have been arrested and booked into the Amador County Jail on the dates and times indicated. All persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

June 6

Pioneer

William Patrick Barnes, 61, Pioneer; 10:56 p.m. on the 26600 block of Highway 88; Assault with a deadly weapon, not a firearm, with gross bodily injury; Soliciting a lewd act.

June 7

Pine Grove

Angela Irene Rees, 41, Pine Grove; 11:45 a.m. on the 14000 block of Rolling Hills Court; Vandalism of $400 or more....

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Craig Baracco
1 week ago

The Amador County Planning Commission has voted to deny an application for a new winery tasting room in Fiddletown.

At its meeting Tuesday night, the planning commission heard an application for a new tasting room located on Ostrom Road, on the northern outskirts of Fiddletown. The Plein Air Vineyards proposal included an 1,800-square-foot winery, 800-square-foot tasting room, and eight-car parking lot. Many residents living near the project testified at the meeting to oppose the project, expressing specific concerns over traffic,...

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Jack Mitchell
5 days ago
The Camanche Fire started on Friday, June 17, 2016 - burned 200 acres. Here's the aftermath. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie
On Monday, June 20, 2016 we took the opportunity to fly over the Camanche Fire area. The Camanche Fire started on June 17, 2016 at 2:54 p.m. and burned approximately 200 acres. No home were lost, but three outbuidlings were destroyed, another was damaged. No injuries were reported.This is an aerial view of the site taken on Monday, June 20, 2016, at 11:54 p.m. https://youtu.be/Bsge87-LSsc [Read more]
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Craig Baracco
1 week ago

In a vote held at their meeting on Tuesday, the Amador County Board of Supervisors adopted a budget for the the upcoming 2016-17 fiscal year.

All told, the budget outlines $80 million in total spending, with $38 million spent by the general fund and the rest split into various dedicated funds. Public protection, which includes the County Sheriff, Probation, jail and court system, will receive $34.4 million this coming year. $11.4 million will be spent on Public Assistance, $9.5 million on Public Ways and Facilities and $9.2...

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Via Press Release
1 week ago

The following is taken from dispatch logs created and compiled by the Amador County Sheriff’s Office on the dates and times indicated. This information is part of the public record and is presented here in the interests of public safety.

May 26 2:13 a.m. Barking Dog in Pioneer. An evicted tenant has a dog that runs around loose all night. 11:55 a.m. Suspicious Circumstances on Depot Road in Martell. There is a tenant here who, after getting drunk, rides a bicycle all the time. The caller just wanted to advise law enforcement...

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Brent Parsons
1 week ago
Parker and Bella lounge in the desert. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Brent Parsons

We left Parker’s bones behind after a second windy night and drove the 125 miles to Cedar City. It’s a neat, tree-thick town at the base of the mountains where Interstate 15 is a final southern route option. Zion, which we drive through but avoid the crowded campgrounds, is 65 miles south on the way to Navajo and Grand Canyon country. Instead, if we’re heading that way, we camp at a quiet little BLM campground just past Kanab, on a 40-mile dirt road connecting Utah with Arizona. The crowd there might reach six.

We had several...

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Brent Parsons
1 week ago

Amador County’s Upcountry golf course, Mace Meadow, on Highway 88, in Buckhorn, has been sold. I’ve previously written a few pieces on this subject. If you haven’t seen me play, you might think I’m a golfer. No, I’m not, but I am interested in a facility that once attracted many to the Upcountry, including my parents, who, in turn, enticed me to Amador.

After a couple of disappointing buyer back-outs and a looming bankruptcy, it looks like a deal has been sealed. These last-chance buyers hoped all would be final by Monday, the...

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Jerry Budrick
1 week ago

Bombarded from many sides, the Amador Water Agency Board of Directors deadlocked on a vote to cancel Phase 2 of the Amador Transmission Pipeline Project. At its regular meeting last Thursday, Board Chairman Robert Manassero made a motion to cancel the project. Director Art Toy seconded the motion, but the subsequent vote resulted in a 2-2 tie, as Directors Rich Farrington and Gary Thomas voted nay. Director Paul Molinelli, who had been expected to support the motion, was absent from the meeting.

At a special meeting of the board...

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