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Sonoma County Gazette
Rio Nido Roadhouse sign and building says it all about the recent destruction.
This photo of the Rio Nido Roadhouse sign and building says it all about the recent destruction. Photo: By Lisa June on FaceBook/RioNido

The Flood
Sonoma County Faux Pas

Residents of Rio Nido were Not Alerted to Evacuate!

Mar 29, 2019
by Elaine B. Holtz


The February flood was huge. It certainly devastated our area. No one really anticipated it being as big as it was.

We always hear of Mill St and the Armstrong Woods area flooding, but this one was certainly a shocker. What I find most interesting is that the County alerted residents in Guerneville to evacuate but did not alert residents of Rio Nido to evacuate. For some inexplicable reason we were not EVEN on the list. I wonder how this happened? BIG, BIG mistake.

Rio Nido Lodge:

The RN Lodge is still standing. However, it did take in quite a bit of water.

We are temporarily closed for cleaning and repairs.  Our resident Innkeeper is still residing on the premises, we have workers weaving their magic and before you know it, we will be open for business once again! Stay tuned for more exciting news. We are looking forward to all the wonderful improvements being made to this historical building.

Canoeing in Rio Nido after the River crested:

Rio Nido Lodge with staff and neighbors in kayaks. Photo: Rionidolodge.comWell, I never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would be canoeing in Rio Nido. 

The Rio Nido Lodge had quite a few beautiful paintings adorning the main lobby of the Lodge. With so much going on, the artist and I realized we needed to somehow get to the Lodge and save the paintings. Both of us canoed over to the Lodge from Canyon 7. It was a bit scary especially with power poles in the water and propane tanks floating around. We made is safely to the Lodge, made it inside to chest deep water, took down the paintings, placed them in the canoe and paddled back without tipping the canoe through the mucky water. What a story!


Its hard to believe there is so much debris after the flood. People have so much stuff. Well, on one hand its called Spring cleaning. Dilapidated properties with trash will now be cleaned up and business will be back to usual.

As a society, we place so much value on stuff.  I say, less is more. 


1) Anyone notice the nice, modern bus stop on River Road? Looks great and shields pedestrians from the rain.

2) The Friends of Rio Nido (FRN) are still working on getting our RN post office back. So much bureaucracy.  They are still investigating legal proceedings. Appropriate notice was not given to the public about the closure.

3) The historic Rio Nido Fountain is going to be restored. All the improvements are currently in the works. Pumps, LED lighting, materials, etc. will be needed.

Its going to be a beautiful sight when entering Rio Nido. Be patient. We will need volunteers and donations. A fundraiser is imminent. Stay tuned for more info....

Lolly our pet of the monthRio Nido Pet of the Month:

This months POM is Lollipop Lolita. Lolly is a fawn chihuahua. She is a rescue and came from Jessica's Haven and Rescue in San Rafael, CA.  My good friend, Laura Cottingham, owner of the rescue alerted me of her arrival. Lolly is two years old and is the sweetest, loving little soul. Lolly adores her fur brothers and sisters and is in charge. Tiny as she is, she is the Boss of this family. Lolly loves cuddling, has a very large appetite for such a tiny little girl and is quite the social butterfly. She is always excited to meet new people. If you're lucky you may catch a glimpse of this darling little chihuahua on walks in RN with her proud mommy.


Rio Nido Magic by Elena Chronis


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