Mountaineer Progress Headline News for September 15, 2016
Wrightwood Music Doubleheader
By Michael Palecki
Last Saturday, Wrightwood music fans had their choice between two venues offering a variety of sounds for a total of eight hours. At the Village Grind, Tommy & Gayle Dowling presented their annual music festival to thank musicians and audience members for another great year of support. Later in the day at The Apple Farm the closing concert of the 2016 Music in the Pines season showcased Jarett James and The County Line, a local finalist in the ongoing America’s Country Showdown Competition.
Starting off at the Village Grind, Alan Speer & Arin Coyl played acoustic guitars and sang folk songs as well as performing ever so subtle guitar instrumentals. Notable cover songs were Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” and Van Morrison’s “Caravan” with Alan singing that timeless phrase, “Turn up your radio.”
Following Speer and Coyl, Chuck Stewart, on bass guitar, accompanied Walter Foley on electric guitar, with Gayle Dowling on lead vocals and acoustic guitar, and Chris Boehmé on drums. The set included a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Dance Me To The End Of Love” with sultry vocals from Gayle, and Foley playing his guitar gypsy-style. On a cover of Gram Parsons’ “Return of the Grievous Angel,” Foley played a remarkable slide guitar while Gayle’s vocals were a close second to Lucinda Williams’, poignant version of that song. Interspersed with those selections were four original songs written by Gayle, which included “The Mountain,” and “A Memory” with a rockabilly beat.
Dave Leicht on acoustic guitar/vocals with Mark Barrera on electric guitar and vocals, played a set of all time favorite cover songs. Trading off on vocals, Barrera started with Dylan’s “Maggie’s Farm” with Leicht scatting around on guitar. After that, Leicht sang the Rolling Stones’ “Dead Flowers” with a twangy voice and then sang harmonies to Barrera’s vocals on “The Weight” by The Band. Concluding with “Fire On The Mountain,” Barrera’s vocals and long extended guitar solo, for the song written by Gayle Dowling, also paid tribute to the name of the festival.
Continuing with a change of musicians, Gayle Dowling, Chuck Stewart and Chris Boehmé became part of the “Grateful Fred Band” with the addition of Fred Stuart on Dobro slide guitar and lead vocals, Chuck Tucker on electric guitar and mandolin and Brittan Egnozzi on supporting vocals.
Fred Stuart, the former Master Builder for Fender Guitars now has his own line of vintage inspired instruments and created a one-of-a-kind Stuart “Goldenhawk” electric guitar for Gayle Dowling with an Alice in Wonderland bas relief carving on the front of the guitar body.
The Grateful Fred set included Chuck Stewart singing “Rock Me Mama” (Secor/Dylan), and then Fred Stuart singing his own autobiographical version of “You Don’t Know My Mind” with plenty of slide guitar as Dowling, Tucker and Egnozzi sang vocal harmonies. After that, Stuart and Stewart sang Buck Owens’ “Love’s Gonna Live Here.” Additional memorable songs with again lots of Dobro slide guitar were Egnozzi singing Emmylou Harris’s “Those Memories Of You” and Fred Stuart singing Gram Parson’s “Hickory Wind. The set concluded with the entire cast singing Hank Williams’ “Honky Tonk Blues.”
Meanwhile at The Apple Farm, more than 350 country music fans streamed into the amphitheater for the Music in the Pines showcase of Jarett James and The County Line. During a pre-concert interview, James confided that although the band did not advance to the national finals for the Best New Act in Country Music Award to be announced early next year, the Wrightwood musicians honed their stage performances remarkably for an upcoming road tour.
And that they did, with James singing lead vocals and playing acoustic guitar, accompanied by Cody Blair on electric guitar, Mark Eshelman on bass guitar with Chase Nankevil playing drums. The set of 30 songs included covers of every notable contemporary country music star as well as four original selections penned by Jarett, which in a way explained his values and love of country music.
Starting off with Billy Curington’s “I Wanna Be A Hillbilly,” James worked the audience and warmed them up with his showmanship. “Folsom Prison Blues,” by Johnny Cash, had a high energy tempo with electric guitar pulsing a steady locomotion. Later on James announced, “Here we are on a farm so let’s get down with the honky tonk music of Tim McGraw’s song “Down on The Farm.” That generated some cheering, applause, and dancing as each of his band mates was then featured in solo performances.
When the band played Brad Paisley’s “Easy Money,” there were more than 20 line dancers in front of the stage, and then with Chris Ledoux’s “Cadillac Cowboy,” the musicians were at a high octane pace to Jarett’s vocals and the audience heated up to an excited frenzy.
That was just midway through the concert, but the energy level provided staying power for the audience on a night to remember at The Apple Farm.
PPHCSD Assists SCMWC with Two Million Gallons
By Steve Mosley
The topic on the table at the September 7th PPHCSD Board meeting was water. Sheep Creek Municipal Water Company is currently suffering a severe water shortage. In an August 19th letter to their shareholders and customers, General Manager Chris Cummings said that Sheep Creek is “experiencing a severe water crisis” and asked, “Every water user to cut water use an additional 25%.” He went on to state in the letter not only is the Board of Directors monitoring the situation closely, but that they are developing another source for water.
In an August 31st letter to the members of the PPHCSD Board, Mr. Cummings thanked the PPHCSD for their assistance in the past, and requested an additional two million gallons of water. According to a September 7th PPHCSD memorandum, the PPHCSD began assisting Sheep Creek Water on August 4th to help with their shortage. As of August 30th, 3.8 million gallons had been given to Sheep Creek. Taking into account the water that the District owed to Sheep Creek for water provided after vandals let loose 6 million gallons of PPHCSD water in 2015, 1.8 million gallons is owed back to the District by SCMWC.
During the September 7th meeting, Mr. Cummings addressed the current water shortage saying water levels have risen, “a couple feet,” still; water production has decreased 77% in the last three months. PPHCSD board member Al Morrissette asked Mr. Cummings, “are you guys looking at next year?” Mr. Cummings responded by saying that Sheep Creek is looking at another water source for next summer.
PPHCSD Chair Dan Whalen commented the two managers of Sheep Creek and the PPHCSD need to get together and work out a long-range plan, rather than a “Band-Aid.” He also stated in addressing Mr. Cummings, “Anything beyond this, I want to see a plan.” The proposed new water source would take two years to develop. The PPHCSD ultimately moved forward with the transfer of two million gallons to Sheep Creek, with a vote of 4-1. Director Mark Roberts recused himself, citing his own affiliation as a SCMWC customer.
Serrano collapses late against Quartz Hill
for first loss
By Keith Rivas
Serrano’s varsity football team suffered their first loss of the season, at the hands of the Quartz Hill Rebels. The Diamondbacks fell 21-14, giving up two scores to the Rebels in the final quarter of play.
Seth Hughes completed five of his nine passing attempts of the night, throwing for 99 yards overall and a quarterback rating of 54.6. Rebels’ Matthew Tago threw the ball effectively against the D’backs, proving himself more poised in a big home win. Tago, the junior quarterback, completed 13 of his 20 throws, totaling 141 yards and a quarterback rating of 81.5.
Serrano’s running game was their one positive takeaway, as they out-rushed Quartz Hill 135-128 led by Brandon Murcio’s 56 yards on 18 carries.
Both teams racked up consequential penalties, with eight flags called on the Diamondbacks contrasted to the Rebels’ nine. Although Serrano put up 14 points, they only ran 39 plays in the game, compared to the 60 plays run by their opponents. This gap can cause fatigue in the team’s defense, and is something to watch moving forward in the season.
Next, Serrano will travel to Adelanto in a game that will decide momentum moving forward for the Diamondbacks. Should the team see their record fall to 2-2, they will have a home game against Kaiser in a few weeks to get back on track. Up next for Quartz Hill is a battle against Eastside.
9/6 Drug / Alcohol Violations, poss of controlled substance, 4600 blk Phelan Rd. Phelan
9/9 Theft / Larceny, lost or stolen plate, Phelan Rd./Wilson Ranch Rd., Phelan
Deputies recover stolen trucks taken during the High Desert Fires and arrest a Phelan man
On Saturday, September 3, 2016 at approximately 9:00 p.m., deputies from the Hesperia Police Department observed a Toyota pickup, in a business’ parking lot, with an attached license plate that had previously been reported lost or stolen. Further investigation found it did not belong to the truck it was affixed to and the truck itself was reported stolen on August 30, 2016 from Hesperia. The truck, along with other belongings from the victim’s home, were reportedly stolen from their residence while the family was evacuated during the fires.
Deputies set up surveillance and observed the suspect enter the vehicle and leave the parking lot. A traffic stop was initiated, but the suspect attempted to flee in the vehicle until he lost control in the dirt and then fled on foot. After a short foot pursuit the suspect was detained and taken into custody.
Suspect Michael William Kessler was found to be in possession of the stolen vehicle and ammunition. Suspect Kessler was arrested and booked at HDDC on charges of PC496d(a)- Possession of a stolen vehicle, PC30305(a)(1)- Prohibited from owning ammunition, PC3455- Probation violation and two outstanding warrants.
Collision results in critical injuries
By Terri Hill
A multi-vehicle accident Tuesday September 12, on Phelan Road at Nevada Road, took the life of one victim and critically injured another. Shortly before 1 p.m. September 13th, a Ford Fusion, Ford Focus, and Dodge Dually were involved in the major collision, the cause of which is under investigation.
According to San Bernardino County Fire Duty PIO, Ryan Vaccaro, one victim was trapped, required extrication from the vehicle, and was pronounced deceased at the scene. Another person involved in the collision was airlifted to Arrowhead Regional Hospital with serious injuries. A third person declined medical attention.
Phelan Road was closed in both directions for approximately 2 ½ hours, while the scene was under investigation and authorities waited for the coroner’s arrival.
Phelan Sub Station finds two suspects stealing heavy equipment
On Monday, August 31, 2015, Deputies from the Rural Crimes Task Force with the assistance of deputies from the Phelan Station located two suspects stealing heavy equipment, batteries and other materials from DR Horton Construction in Adelanto. This construction site has been the victim of numerous thefts varying from tractors, batteries, fuel, copper wire and other miscelaneous material. The thefts have set back construction of new homes in the area and cost local business’ thousands of dollars in repair/replacement of materials.
Using progressive investigative tools the Rural Crimes Task Force was able to place the suspects into custody. Robert Christopherson and Timothy Kraayenbrink were both arrested and booked at the High Desert Detention Center on charges of Possession of Stolen Property and Grand Theft.
We-tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at www.wetip.com.
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Mountaineer Progress - News for September 15, 2016
Gratitude for youths’ assistance during Blue Cut
Submitted by Rebecca Fullmer
I live in the Phelan area and am acquainted with the family of Dennis Doyle. When I learned of the service given by the friends of his son, Ryan, during the Blue Cut Fire I desired to share it with others. I know that many others quickly came to the aid of those in the evacuation areas and this is but one example.
Since the Blue Cut Fire on August 16, 2016, the Doyle family of Oak Hills has reflected on the much-needed service they received as they rushed to evacuate from their house. Dennis Doyle was working in the Palm Springs area and headed home when he learned of the fire that might affect his house. His son Ryan Doyle was working in Riverside.
“I knew it would be hours before I arrived home so I called my friend Taylor Bahney who in turn called Brandon Williams, both Hesperia residents,” Ryan said. “Two more of my friends, Tristan Packard and Dalton Hubler, were working with my dad in Palm Springs and they also came to help.”
As this group of young adults worked with Dennis Doyle to secure the house and pack items for evacuation, Nolan Barlow, a former school friend of the young men, was driving by so he stopped and helped too. They were working in increasingly thick smoke and falling ash.
Dennis Doyle sent the young men around the area to help other families who might need assistance and they continued to monitor the location of the fire, returning to their homes when things were safe. He commented on the experience.
“I had a similar situation in 1980 when I helped my parents and neighbors in San Bernardino evacuate from the Panorama Fire and now I’m grateful for the same assistance for my family,” he said.
“I know these young men are service oriented-three earned the rank of Eagle in the Boys Scouts and three have served for two years as missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints-and our community is stronger due to the positive actions of these young men.”
Caltrans didn’t get the memo
By Terri Hill
As the newspaper office was evacuated for the Blue Cut fire immediately after West Cajon Valley received orders, staff members headed west on Highway 2, to Wrightwood. Many cars were also coming into town from Phelan, some by happenstance and some in anticipation of possible evacuation orders in the community. Traffic heading east was moderately heavy as people became aware of the fire, and went to pick up children from area schools.
Motorists on SR-2 were more than a little baffled when they were stopped and forced to wait for a pilot car, and then slowly maneuver, around Caltrans equipment and workers, in a long line of vehicles. “I called CHP while my husband was driving us home,” Mountaineer Managing Editor Vicky Rinek reported. “I asked them if anyone had notified Caltrans about the evacuation orders in the area. The Public Information Officer said he would research it right away.” He also suggested she could try calling Caltrans, but Rinek reminded him she was on the road, and it would be difficult to continue making calls.
In an email conversation, the Mountaineer office informed Terri Kasinga, Caltrans District 8, Chief Public and Media Affairs, of the apparent lack of communication between law enforcement and Caltrans employees during the crucial first hour of evacuations, noting the safety issues for travelers and for the workers. Kasinga responded she would investigate the incident and report back to the newspaper. She sent the following update in an email two days later:
I did some investigation on this issue and it appears that the message was not conveyed to the staff in the field in a timely manner.
I am working with the Caltrans Construction Safety Engineer to insure that future notification takes place as quickly as possible when we have roadwork on state highways that will affect evacuations. I am reaching out to our partners (fire and law enforcement) to see if they have any suggestions.
It is our policy to immediately clear highways in the event of emergencies. In some circumstances work may have to take place to restore the roadbed to ensure safe passage to the public and emergency vehicles.
While Caltrans and law enforcement scrutinize the policies and lines of communication in emergencies, residents are cautioned to be ready for evacuation, and mindful of the complications with traffic flow that can accompany the order.
Serving Wrightwood, Phelan, Pinon HIlls and West Cajon Valley Since 1961