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Sonoma County Gazette
Little girl using magnifying glass to observe flowers.
Little girl using magnifying glass to observe flowers.

Crane Creek Park in Bloom
Annual Family Day
SMART Quad Gates for Safety
Service to Seniors Award



Apr 26, 2019
by Lyndi Brown


Down Home Day – May 11

The 5th annual family day is Saturday, May 11th, 11am to 4pm. Families will enjoy live music by the Spyralites, a chicken BBQ, and refreshments in the Libation Station. There are plenty of $1-or-FREE parent-and-child activities:  Help-Fire-Save-Me, the Egg Toss, Applesauce Challenge, Quest, Cutest Baby, Best Hat, the Hugs & Kisses Booth, and more.

The nonprofit Artful Arrangements finds affordable ways for parents and grandparents to play with their children. Funds raised will support more programs like this one. Visit

Details:  The event is on the grounds of a 1915 working homestead at 205 Orchard Lane, Penngrove, with free admission/parking, and pets are welcome – there’s also a Most Amazing Pet Photo Contest and remember to wear a hat! 

Quad Gate for Downtown Safety

Thanks to Chuck Lucas, for sharing this important item from his column in the Spring issue Penngrove Proud: 

According to Supervisor David Rabbitt, “following approval by a majority of the Board, (on April 2, to approve the agreement with SMART for the installation of the quad gates), Transportation and Public Works will issue the notice to proceed and start construction. Project cost for the supplemental safety measure change is $848,111. The project will include moving the arm at Woodward Ave., installing a new arm opposite Woodward on Main Street. In total, we hope to be under $2.5M for all projects which is good news as this is General Fund revenues.”

The restructuring will provide a safer intersection and allow the county to remove the unsightly ‘candlesticks’ that ruin the beauty of our small town, according to Lewis. “Thanks to the COOPers (Citizens’ Organization of Penngrove) for their hard work the last five years to secure this improvement as well as the work done by Mr. Rabbitt for the town.”

Crane Creek Park in Bloom

I enjoyed a deliriously beautiful day up at Crane Creek Regional Park on a ranger-led tour titled “Can I Eat This?” Ranger Shelley led 15 of us on a slow, 1.5 miles stroll through the meadows. She loaned us wildflower guides and plastic magnifiers to observe flowers named Spotted Dick, Meadowfoam, Fiddlenecks and more. 

We learned about Fremont’s deathcamas, also called common star lily or star zigadene. It is found on grassy or woody slopes or rocky outcrops. Its spike of cream-colored flowers blooms from an underground bulb. “Deathcamas” refers to a toxin found in all parts of the plant. The Lewis and Clark expedition accidentally ate deathcamas bulbs ground into a bread, halting the expedition while its members recovered. And, who knew the ominous side of the Fiddleneck? Its seeds and foliage are poisonous to cattle, and the plant’s sharp hairs can irritate human skin. Love your parks and buy a seasonal pass for easy parking all year and other benefits. You can download the Parks’ 23-page Wildflower Guide or hook yourself up to the iNaturalist app.

Service to Seniors Award

Each year, the Petaluma Chamber and Argus Courier join forces to solicit nominations and give awards to people in our community who make the world go ‘round. This year, the Service to Seniors Award went to Anne and Paul Greenblatt, founders of the nonprofit Village Network of Petaluma in 2014. Anne described the Village this way: “The Village is about revolutionizing our experiences of aging. We are actively building a community that can rely on one another as we navigate the opportunities and challenges ahead. We laugh, learn, and grow with each other. We are expanding choices as we work with others to build a more age-friendly Petaluma.” Husband Paul said: Right now, most of you are probably still working. The Village may interest you because you have older parents, or employees with older parents. But believe it or not, there will come a time when you yourself will retire. Playing golf 5 days a week gets old - you may be ready for new connections and new horizons. That’s where the Village comes in. Research shows that social connections are extremely important in maintaining our health as we age. Volunteering our talents & energy to help others enhances our own well-being. Village volunteers have created many interest groups, like bocce ball, the singing, writing, and gardening groups. We give rides, offer tech help, fix falling fences. Volunteers meet with our members - for a walk, coffee date, maybe playing scrabble.” 

Congratulations to the Greenblatts for starting start their own post-retirement project that serves Penngrove and Petaluma communities. Learn more at a Get to Know the Village meeting, Thursdays May 9 and June 13 at 10 am at the Village office, 955 Petaluma Blvd. South, Petaluma. Contact 776-6055 or see .



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