Roundup: Under the Big Tent
A crowded Gravenstein Apple Fair; cemetery clearing brush; City budget numbers; kids headed back to school this week.
This is the summer of big tent events, literally and figuratively — from Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour packing stadiums across the U.S. to much smaller events in Sebastopol & West County such as last weekend’s Flynn Creek Circus and Bodega’s Big Event parade, Wednesdays at Peacetown, to this weekend’s Gravenstein Apple Fair, which had a nice assortment of tents and shade trees for people to gather under.
People want to be in a crowd again. They want to run into people they haven’t seen for a while. They want to make small talk with strangers. They want to show off proudly their hats and tattoos and toddlers.
Isn’t it amazing to see how many people can gather under the shade of a live oak?
Cemetery Brush Cleanup is Underway
Sebastopol Memorial Lawn is in the process of removing the fallen trees and brush at the cemetery Laura wrote about the brush creating a fire hazard near Burbank Heights last month.
Patty Hiller, who told us about the problem, followed up to say that progress has been made: “We did it! There are large metal containers and a bulldozer up there and the work has begun. Thanks to everybody who helped, especially Fire Chief Jack and Sebastopol Times Laura.”
The City of Sebastopol released the FY 2023-2024 budget on August 3, 2024. This tome is more than a budget document. It is a discussion of past accomplishments and priorities for the upcoming year for each department of government as well as the services it supports such as the Senior Center, Community Cultural Center and Ives Pool.
A. How many pages long is the City of Sebastopol 2023-24 budget document?
B. Is the revenue for the City projected to be higher or lower than last year?
C. Is the budget for the Fire Department more or less than the previous year?
D. Is the budget for the Police Department more or less than the previous year?
E. Is the budget for Public Works more or less than the previous year?
Area schools reopening
It’s a date that parents have had circled on their calendars since June; grandparents who have had extended summer duty (“Gramp Camp” or “Nana Camp”) as well will be happy to see the first day of school.
Here’s the first day of school for each school district in the area:
August 16: Gravenstein Union, Guerneville, Oak Grove Union, Piner-Olivet Union, Santa Rosa Schools and West Sonoma County High School Union.
August 17: Forestville Union, Harmony Union, Sebastopol Union and Twin Hills Union.
August 24: Sebastopol Charter School.
August 28: Summerfield Charter School
Kirsten Madsen exits Creative Sonoma
Kristen Madsen, who talked about the “Arts After Covid” on Sebastopol City Limits in April, is stepping down from Creative Sonoma in mid-September. She announced her exit on a blog post, Creative Sonoma in Transition. Madsen had been helpful in advising the Sebastopol Center for the Arts during its struggles earlier in the year. Applications for a new director are available here.
Pickleball meetup on Monday night
Kathy Kerst, the North Bay Pickleball ambassador whom I profiled last week, will meet with us on the courts at Brook Haven on Monday at 5pm. She will bring extra racquets and offer some lessons to those who want to get started. Seven readers expressed interest in advance but feel free to just show up and play.
Carmen Snyder on the Gravenstein Apple Fair
To Be Taxed or Not
The New Arcade in Town
The Saga of Elderberry Commons
Answers to City Budget questions: A - 354; B - City Revenue $1.372M lower; C - Fire Dept $240K more; D - Police Dept $480K less; E - Public Works $168K less.
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