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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
January 27, 2010     Feather River Bulletin
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January 27, 2010

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6A Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2010 Feather River Bulletin Butcher hangs up his knives after 33 years Joe Klein plans to close the building he designed and built for meats and groceries in Portola after the big snows in 1993 crushed Leonard's Market, where he previously housed his butcher shop. Photo by Diana Jorgenson Is your furnace feeling its age? A Technician from Madden Plumbing & Heating will do the job right the first-time. Factory Trained Technicians Friendly, Honest Help FREE ESTIMATES Free Advice From everyday collection to environmental protection, Think Green. Think Waste Management. Feather River Disposal, Inc., 283-2065 Quincy, Greenville, Chester/Lake Almanor when you need it/ Diana Jorgenson POrtola Editor Soon, a Portola institution, Klein's Quality Meats, will be no more. After 33 years cutting meat for local resi- dents, Joe Klein will retire at the end of January. Klein learned the family trade in Germany at the age of 10. After school, he would go to work in the family business that began in 1923. In 1956, he escaped from East Germany into West Ger- many and eventually immi- grated to America. But, he took his own sweet time get- ting here. From West Germany, he went to Switzerland in 1958, and then to Canada, and from there to Bermuda. In 1976, tall ships, sailing ships from all over were in- vited to participate in cele- brating America's 200th birthday, and Klein was for- tunate enough to be invited aboard one of them sailing from the tip of Spain. The windjammer made its way to the Azores, to Bermu- da and then to Newport, R.I., before entering its New York harbor destination. Thus, Klein arrived in America in high style. From New York, he came straight to Portola, where he had friends: Peter Schmid, former owner of the Log Cab- in Restaurant, and Karl Ban- mann, former owner of the Iron Door in Johnsville. He established his busi- ness at Leonard's Market that year, and there he stayed until the big snows in 1993 crushed the building. At that point, Klein designed and built the new building at 60 Pine St. and expanded his inventory of meats and seafoods to include groceries and wine. Klein has been a stable presence in Portola these past 33 years, but his wide travels before he settled here gave him a wide variety of friendships that kept his life interesting. Peter Benchley, author of "Jaws" and "The Deep," was one of those friends. 'The Deep" was the real life story of another pair of friends, Edna and Teddie Tucker. Klein said only their names were changed. When Jacque Cousteau made a movie about singing whales, Klein was along for the ride. Actually, Cousteau, leased Klein's boat to make the movie. Another friend, Roland Mesnier, was a cook at the White House for 25 years, re- tiring only recently He wrote a book called "All the Presidents' Pastries: 25 Years in the White House" about his experiences. Klein and Mesnier have been friends-more than 40 years, so parts of the book are Klein's life history as well. The book, which also features recipes favored by presidents, is available at the library and at the Williams House Museum. It came out three years ago in French and was translated into English a year later. The two worked together for many years, Klein said. The walls of Klein's meat market are filled with me- mentos of an interesting life: tall ships, Jacque Cousteau and other friends. "I did crazy things," said Klein, acknowledging that health issues are not likely to allow these kinds of ad- ventures again. Klein does not intend to move from the area. This is home. His years in Portola were full of business ups and downs, and in the last 10 years, more downs than ups. He points to two poison- ings of Lake Davis with much of the economic down- turn in the last years. Then the national economy took a dive, preventing him from finding a successor for his business. Although he would like to sell the building, that, too, seems unlikely in the local real estate market, so it will remain available for lease or rent. Times have changed in in- tervening years and it's a new generation out there, a generation that relies heavi- ly on prepared foods and frozen dinners. "People don't know hbw to cook any more, just frozen or out of the can," Klein said. "Many kids don't even know where milk comes from anymore. They come in here and they ask a lot of questions." In years past, families of- ten bought a half or quarter of beef to stock up for winter. Few do that anymore. Whether the traditional butcher shop makes a come- back as hard times continue is unknown, but for the peo- ple of Portola, the closing of Klein's Quality Meats marks the end of an era. NRA friends to host dinner Quincy Friends Of The NRA will hold its annual banquet Saturday, March 13, at 6 p.m., in Serpillo Hall at the Plumas-Sierra County Fairgrounds in Quincy. The NRA does not use PrO= N ~4 Kory Felker, MPT on site for you 5 days a week! Local QHS graduate Class of 1995 * Actively involv6d in community clubs and athletics PLUMAS PHYSICAL THERAPY Kory Felker, MPT 78 Central Ave., Quincy 283-2202 WASTEMANAGEMENT Think Green: ceeds from the event for po- litical support in any way. A few of the ways the funds are used in the northern California region are for the improvement of the shoot- ing sports by supporting Check Out Our range improvements, youth and ladies shooting and the Eddie the Eagle gun aware- ness program. This year:s dinner tickets are $~t0 per person. To be en- ,tered in ~h~::~rl:y bird spe- cial drawing, W~e~ is worth $500 in tickets, you must purchase dinner tickets be- fore Feb. 13. The pre-event drawing is for a Cannon 14- gun safe--these tickets are $20 each, limited to 200, and you need not be present to win. No dinner tickets will be available at the door. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Gina at 283-4130 or Oran at 283-3322. NEW HOHES GARAGES CARPORTS REMODELS COMMERCIAL BLDGS, CONSTRUCTION SINCE 19!~4 / General Building Cont/actor Calif. Lic. #453927 (530) 283-2035 LI L( PEOPLE t - Winler- Clearance Sale Starts Today Up to 70% o. ' (530) 283-0404 GET READY FOR SPRING.* Winter Golf Lessons 112 hour video swing analysis with take-home copy $50 Gift Certificates ,Available for use in 2010 A PLUMAS PINES Golf Resort Brandon Bowling, PGA Head Golf Professional Randy Estep Assistant Golf Professional -836-1420 402 Poplar Valley Rd., Graeagle