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June 25, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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June 25, 2014
 

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8B Wednesday, June 25, 2014 Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter D ITORIAL AND OPINION EDITORIAL I Plumas County has a rich and colorful history dating back to the gold rush. And few events impacted our region as much as the creation of Lake Almanor. This month marks the 100th anniversary of the completion of the Great Western Power Co. dam on the North Fork Feather River at what was then the southern end of Big Meadows. Although vacationers had been drawn to the area for years, the creatiori of Lake Almanor spawned a premier vacation destination that attracted people from all over the world. Creating the lake was no small undertaking. A number of factors complicated the project, including its remote location. On top of that, concrete was hard to come by because of two huge construction projects taking place in. the Western Hemisphere: San Francisco was rebuilding from the 1906 earthquake, and construction of the Panama Canal was underway. Originally, plans called for a series of concrete arches to cross the river channel just as it dropped into the gorge leading to Seneca and the Feather River Canyon. Construction began in 1910, and everything was going according to plan until late summer 1912. After five of the proposed arches were completed, it was discovered that instead of the expected bedrock, they were building on an old lava flow and over a thick layer of clay that just wouldn't support the concrete dam. Panic set in downstream, with outcries from residents in Oroville and MarysviUe. Finally, during hearings held by the state Railroad Commission, it was announced that the dam was being abandoned in favor of a hydraulic-fill dam, using gravel, sand and clay, that would be built just upstream of the concrete dam site. That dam was completed in early June 1914, with Big Meadows already flooding from a heavy winter. The dam held a capacity of 220,000 acre-feet of water and flashboards were installed in 1916 to increase capacity. During the dry years of the mid-1920s, a new and higher dam was added below and adjoining the original dam, which increased water storageto 880,000 acre-feet. Today the lake:attracts tens o~thousands of .... visitors annually. In addition to its popularity, the lake represents an economic engine for the Lake Almanor Basin and Plumas County. Its shores are lined with small communities and resorts that are summer homes for thousands of people and year-round residences for thousands more. The lake is also the headwaters of the famed stairway of power that provides hydroelectricity to the region. On behalf of everyone at Feather Publishing, happy birthday Lake Alrnanor. This place wouldn't be the same without you. Editorials are written by members of the editorial board and should be considered the opinion of the newspaper. The board consists of the publlsher, managing editor and the appropriate staff writers. Fea blishing wspaper For breaking news, go to plumasnews.com Michael C. Taborski .............. Publisher Keri B. Taborski .... Legal Advertising Dept. Dan McDonald .......... Managing Editor Jenny Lee ................... Photo Editor Ingrid Burke ................. Copy Editor Staff writers: Laura Beaton Debra Moore Carolyn Shipp Maddie Musante Michael Condon M. Kate West Makenzie Davis Aura Whittaker Ruth Ellis Sam Williams Will Farris James Wilson Susan Cort Johnson Samantha P. Hawthorne Feather River Indian Valley Record Bulletin (530) 284-7800 (530) 283-0800 Portola Reporter (530) 832-4646 Chester Progressive (530) 258-3115 Westwood Lassen County Times PinePress (530) 257-5321 (530) 256-2277 Member, Printed on California Newspaper recycled paper Publishers Assoc. Summer solstice brings midnight sun memories Summer solstice, the longest day of the year, just passed. Already the days are getting shorter and the inevitable march toward fall slowly begins. Summer solstice always reminds me of the years I spent in Alaska working at my uncle Roger's fishing lodge on the Kenai Peninsula. My uncle's place, Anglers Lodge and Fish Camp, is on the banks of the world-famous Kenai River, known for its record 97-pound king salmon. I used to go to Alaska in late April to prepare for the fishing season that began in May out on the "salt." Roger took customers to a launch site on the Cook Inlet called Deep Creek, about an hour's drive away. In those days, he would launch the boat himseffby driving onto the beach and backing the boat trailer into the water. MY TURN LAURA BEATON Staff Writer Ibeaton@plumasnews.com It could be a pretty dicey situation, depending on the surf. These days an enterprising guy with a tractor makes a boatload of money by offering a tractor launch service. He launches boats even in high surf, and the skippers call when they're ready to come in and he's waiting on the beach with their trailerkready to receive their boats. This week's special days NOT JUST ORDINARY DAY COMPILED BY KERI TABORSKI Not just an ordinary day....a sampling weekly notable special days and facts throughout the year. of June 25 1788 -- Virginia, (The Old Dominion State), is admitted as the tenth U.S. state. 1947 -- "The Diary of a Young Girl" better known as "The Diary of Anne Frank" is published. 1978 -- The rainbow colored flag, representing gay pride, is flown for the first time in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day parade. 1984 -- A U.S. library accused pop star Michael Jackson of owing more than $1 million in overdue book frees. Library officials agreed to waive the t'mes if Jackson returned the book autographed. June 26 1927 -- The roller coaster The Cyclone opens at Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York. 1945 -- The United Nations charter is signed in San Francisco. 1974 -- The Universal Pwoduct Code (UPC) is scanned for the first t:ime to sell a pack of Wrigleys chewing gum at a supermarket in Troy, Ohio. amended in 1924 to include the stanza Happy Birthday to You. 1985 -- The 2,488 mile U.S. Highway Route 66, originally opened in 1926, was closed and removed from the U.S. highway system. It can currently be found on some maps as Historic Route 66. 1974 -- United States President Richard Nixon visits the Soviet Union for the first time. June 28 Today is Paul Bunyan Day, celebrating the giant lumberjack of American folklore. Various Paul Bunyan Mountain Festival events will be held in Westwood July 3-5. (see page 36 of the Plumas County Visitors Guide for details). 1846-- The saxophone is patented by Adolphe Sax in Paris, France. June 29 Today is Waffle Iron Day celebrating the handy waffle iron. The waffle dates back to the 1300s in Greece where the Greeks cooked flat cakes between two metal pans, flavoring them with herbs and cheese -- not syrup. 1974-- Mikhail~Baryshnikov defects from the Soviet Union to Canada while on tour with the Bolshoi Ballet. 2007 -- Apple, Inc., releases the first mobile smartph0ne, ~e IPhone. June 30 1953 -- The Chevrolet Corvette automobile rolls off the assembly line in Flint, Michigan. June 27 1859 -- The song "Happy Birthday" was composed by Mildred J. Hill with lyrics written later by her sister Patty Hill. The song was first published as "Good Morning TO You" and the lyrics were July 1 The traditional birthstone for July is the ruby. 1908 -- The Morse Cede signal SOS is adopted as the international distress signal, Back at the lodge, the fishermen would make themselves at home in their rooms, by the campfire, on the riverbank or soaking in the hot tub that overlooked the glacier-fed turquoise river. In early May, fishermen were treated to the "combo" package: they trolled for king (Chinook) salmon on the salt near the mouth of Deep Creek, where the fish headed to spawn, and bottom-fished for halibut further out during slack tide. It was a rare day when the crew got skunked. Many days they would come home with limits and that night's dinner would feature fresh-caught halibut or salmon. On the longest day of the year in the "land of the midnight sun," the nights barely got dark. I remember driving at 11 p.m. without headlights. I learned to fall asleep even in the light. Lots of people had blackout curtains to block the sunlight, but my living accommodations (a small trailer nicknamed the Silver Bullet) had no such luxury. What I never got used to was the incessant whine of mosquitoes! There is so much water in Alaska "-- rivers, lakes, ponds, bogs --that mosquitoes flourish just about everywhere, in huge populations proportionate to their thirst for fresh blood. The saving grace at the lodge is the breeze by the river, which keeps the bloodsuckers at bay. There's a thing in Alaska called "civil twilight." This is the period before sunrise and after sunset when the light still lingers. According to the daylight hours calculator for a typical summer solstice in Soldotna (the town closest to Anglers Lodge), civil twilight begins before sunrise around 2:39 a.m., the sun rises at 4:36 a.m., the sun sets at 11:35 p.m. and civil twilight ends at 1:32 a.m. That equals just 67 minutes of darkness. Can you imagine? For outdoor workaholics ,it's a dream come true. But for those who can't sleep unless it's pitch dark, it's a nightmare. There's a lot to be said for living in a four-season climate. I kind of forgot that during my 25 years in Santa Barbara, where flowers bloom year-round and you can ' swim in the ocean on Christmas. The progression of the seasons each year brings anticipation and delight: the first snowstorm and ski, the first wildflowers and hike, the first hot summer day and dip in an icy mountain lake or stream. Now that summer is truly here, we're already harvesting peas and lettuce from our gardens and picking cherries from the trees. The blackberr-~es a~.e flowering and setting fruit and farmers markets are in full swing. More events than you can keep up with are happening all over, and the promise of apples, pumpkins and autumn leaves are a full season away. But for now, it's time to get outside and enjoy that sunshine, clean air and cool water. Soon enough fall, then winter, then spring will bring us full circle to the next summer solstice. REMEMBER WHEN KERI TABORSKI Historian 75 YEARS AGO ..... 1939 Headline: Greenville Bank Robbed!!! Walking into the Indian Valley Bank as the staffprepared to close for the lunch hour, a disguised man held up the bank and escaped with over $5000 in currency and silver. The burglar fled along Wolf Creek at the back of the bank building, leaving a trail of coins behind him. 50 YEARS AGO ..... 1964 IrOun Jim School in the Feather River Canyon will add grades 7 and 8 next school year. The local Ladies Auxiliary of the Veterans of War Post will dedicate a memorial plaque which will be installed in front of the the Plamas County courthouse bearing the names of Plumas County men who lost their lives in WWII and the Korean War. It is made of black granite and measures 4 by 7 feet. 25 YEARS AGO ..... 1989 The complex and expensive removal of asbestos from old Plumas County area school buildings will begin this month in Chester. One of the largest jobs of the entire asbestos removal projects will be at Quincy High School where a 10,000 gallon boiler is encased in asbestos. 10 YEARS AGO ..... 2004 Masons, Plumas County employees and residents gathered this week to watch the opening of the Plumas County courthouse cornerstone and remove the time capsule box there. Certain items contained in the box included coins, a Bible, a photograph of the Feather Publishing Company newspaper brick building located on the corner of Bucks Lake Road and Crescent Street, a Feather River College class catalog, a Plumas County Fair booklet, stamps and other items. A feasibility study for a hotel and a 100 space RV park in Portola has been approved by the Plumas County Community Development Commission. I don't envy county supervisors at budget time i! to believe that the magic nobers needed to As a writer, when I hit a mental speed balance the budget, without loss of county bump, I pace. Today as I work to come up with an opinion for this column I am services, will be forthcoming. experiencing nothing but bump, bump, This is an unenviable task that I wouldn't bump! wish on my worst enemy and yet, our I do my pacing in the parking lot outside elected officials will have to face the the office of the Chester Progressive and as ............ ~%~ ..... numbers, the county's employees and their my first opinion pops up I will say I have to :~ : constituents day in and day out for the next agree with the well-known phrase of ------- several months. television's Mr. Rogers, "It's a beautiful day MY TURN While a portion of the shortfall may be in the neighborhood." M. KAYE WEST tracked back to declining income and rising It's about 75 degrees outside, the breeze is Staff writer expenses, it's important to remember that warm and in one direction I can catch sight chestemews@plumasnews.com other outside mandates also impact the of the north shore waters of Lake Almanor fiscal position of the county. and in the other, beautiful baskets of can translate to more children and families This past week, the state of California hanging flowers at the commercial nursery in our community, passed its budget, and lo and behold, on across the street. Having a healthy community also time for a change! The Legislature looked I see unfamiliar faces on the nearby impacts daily lives beyond our town awfully pleased with its accomplishment sidewalks, which says "tourists" to me. I'm boundaries. It also impacts the well-being but what does that portend for Plumas and very much hoping for my community, and of our county government, the other 57 counties in the state? those in the rest of Plumas and Lassen Local government operates on the While I have yet to hear what expenses counties, that we see many more guests in transient occupancy tax that tourists pay the state will likely be passing down to our local businesses and at our summer when they stay in Plumas County lodging county level, it's a pretty sure bet that by events over the coming months, establishments. An increase in home sales reducing funds to county level roads, Personally, I am a very strong advocate means more property tax goes into the schools, health and mental health, the for healthy families and healthy general fund of the county. Legislature found the means to "rob Peter communities and I am not so different from It is now that time of the year when the to pay Paul" in their budget sessions. others who wish our economy would return Plumas County Board of Supervisors must This, coupled with any new legislation to more robust times, take calculator in hand to balance the that may affect the county's requirement to While I think we could all agree that we budget for the new fiscal year. pay first-time dollars to a new state are not likely to experience the real estate In a recent article, staff writer Debra program, may also end up being part of the boom of seven years ago anytime soon, it Moore reported the county's cash shortfall budget puzzle. would be nice to see more of our vacant has increased from $1.7 million a year ago I wish the BOS members well as they storefronts fill with new businesses, to $3.3 million this year. navigate their way through this stressful New business can mean more jobs, which It would be pretty "Pollyanna" of anyone process; they have a hard road ahead. J J