Phelan and Wrightwood Chambers, Music in the Pines & Lions bring Easter celebrations to the Tri-Community
By Terri Hill
Easter Sunday in Wrightwood was a celebration of traditions, old and new.
Timberline Lions held their famous Pancake Breakfast, from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Wrightwood Community Building.
The Lions’ breakfast has become a staple of Easter morning festivities in the Village, having first been served in 1973. Families come for the morning repast before church, after church, or before the big egg hunt at the park. For some attendees, it’s a tradition. For others, it’s an introduction to their new home town. Several couples, new to Wrightwood, expressed their appreciation for the old-fashioned small-town events that aren’t found in big cities. Whether long-time residents, current house hunters, or “weekenders,” locals young and old enjoy participating in Village activities.
Our good friend and music man John Burcher was at the stove, making omelets. Lion Bill Swift flipped hundreds of pancakes. Kitchen staff included Michelle Kraenkel and Novel Carter. Helpers outside the kitchen included Nancy Smith, Carl Smith, Donna Alvarez, Jill Carlton-Payne, Dee Potter, Quinn Culver, Rinek family; Stephanie, Gilda, Chris, and Allison, and Judy Wright with her son Danny G. and granddaughter Katie C. and friend Alicha M.
In its second year, the Community Easter Celebration at the Apple Farm was well-attended. Again, singers from the Mormon and Catholic churches brought traditional Easter music to the outdoor venue. Lora Steinmann, from Our Lady of the Snows, and Music in the Pines director Claudia Campbell organized the early morning concert, which featured sacred music honoring the Christian holiday. Last year’s celebration was a sunrise service, but with a temperature of less than 40º predicted at that hour, Steinmann and Campbell chose to hold the concert at 8 a.m., when it would be a toasty 40º plus! It was, apparently, a good choice, as the event drew a large audience of well-bundled adults and children.
At precisely 11 a.m., the annual egg hunt at Hollis M. Stewart Park began. The Wrightwood Chamber of Commerce sponsors the Easter egg hunt annually. This year, they hid 1,000 eggs in the park, plus three golden eggs with special prizes. The park was divided into three separate sections, one for each of three age groups. With a staggered starting time, the youngest children are allowed to hunt first, and then the two older groups begin soon after. Even the 12-year olds eagerly anticipate the start of the hunt and run frantically in their search for the golden egg.
A common feature of the Lions’ pancake breakfast and the Chamber’s egg hunt is the appearance of the Easter Bunny. Lions Steve and Vicky Rinek and their family are acquainted with the holiday hare and assure his arrival each year. Children at both events look forward to posing for pictures with the bunny, and to the treats he hands out. In addition to the younger set, a number of adults were seen posing for photos with the giant rabbit.
Mark your calendar for April 21, 2019, and plan to join the community in local Easter celebrations.
By Michael Palecki
On the final Saturday of March, the Phelan Chamber of Commerce presented an Easter event that rivaled all others in the Tri-Community. There was little hunting to take place on the Serrano High football field with 3,000 plastic eggs arranged in plain view on the lawn. Instead, the task for members of four age groups was to run down the lane, scoop up an egg and pop it in their basket before repeating the process as many times as possible.
Welcoming the crowd of hundreds, Master of Ceremonies Tony Spampinato explained that Lane 1was for those children two and three years old with parental assistance allowed holding the basket and providing instructions, but not actually scooping up eggs. Spampinato explained that Lane 2 was for those four and five, with Lane 3 dedicated to six and seven-year olds and Lane 4 for older children eight to ten years of age. Although most of the eggs contained small pieces of candy, there were some that had a purple ribbon inside, which could be redeemed for gift baskets of games and toys.
While most contestants jockeyed for positions and developed strategies prior to the 10:00 a.m. starting time, it was the tiny toddlers in Lane 1 that received special encouragement from parents as they added the words, “Egg, basket, run” to their vocabulary. Meanwhile, Spampinato introduced the Easter Bunny, and the Royal Court consisting of Miss Phelan Sierra Leyde, Jr. Miss Phelan Elizabeth Schuller and Little Miss Phelan Harlow Rae Sizemore. Shortly afterwards, Nash Axtel and her sister Sidney-who were visiting from San Diego- shared a happy pose with the Easter Bunny.
Following that, it was time to start Lane 1 and unlike past years there was a minimum of confusion as the little ones really seemed to have absorbed their lesson and they methodically scooped eggs into their baskets. However, there was definitely confusion in Lane 2 as contestants jumped the gun and Set Free Ministry volunteers exclaimed, “Let them run.” On lanes 3 and 4, although the egg placement extended farther down the field, the older kids were true aficionados at galloping and lunging for eggs. In a flash, the lawn was clean, glistening in the morning sunlight, and baskets were full.
Sponsors for the Phelan Chamber Easter event included Mills Hardware who provided the bounce house, and Tidwell & Associates Realty, Desert Community Bank, News Plus, Keller Williams Realty, Shear Realty, Hannon Painting, and Desert Mountain Veterinary-who provided the eggs and gift/raffle baskets. Most importantly, volunteers from Set Free Ministry prepared the field and monitored activities for a safe experience.
Serrano High’s chapter of Future Farmers of America (FFA) under the supervision of Department Chair Sarah Huss, operated the concession stand and provided games. Additionally, Carrie Pirner and Justin Hayward of FFA sold Origami Owl custom jewelry lockets and charms as a fundraiser for the chapter.
In addition to the finest weather in years, moving the event from the baseball field to the football field provided new opportunities for the event.
WCSD hears public concerns about facilities use fees
By Terri Hill
Tuesday’s meeting of the Wrightwood Community Services District (CSD) drew 40 residents, approximately 30 more than usual. The rise in attendance was predominantly due to a rallying of the troops, by the Wrightwood Farmers’ Market owners and operators Ron Frame and Joyce Wonderly.
Having recently become aware of the fees that will now be imposed for use of CSD properties, i.e. Community Building (CB), parking lot (PL), Vivian Null Park stage (Stage), Old Firehouse/Museum (WM), and the Skate Park and Hollis M. Stewart Park, the Famers’ Market owners put out a call to supporters to come to the meeting and express their concerns. During Public Comments, Ron explained that, as the fees were presented at the last CSD meeting, the Farmers’ Market would certainly have to close down, for lack of funding.
Cheryl Buckle spoke on behalf of the Snowline Players, an organization that has been part of the community since 1961. The hourly rate for renting the CB for rehearsals and performances would be prohibitive for them as well. Mal Youngblood worked out the figures for Mountaineer Days; for the facilities alone, the Chamber of Commerce would have to pay $1801.00, compared to last year’s $262. The Chamber still has to pay fees to the County, for closing the roads, and other permits. Representatives of Lions Club and Wrightwood Home Owners’ Association also spoke to the uncertain future of their organizations, given the new fee schedule.
The agenda for the meeting was rearranged, moving the Facility (use) Application item to an earlier slot, to accommodate the people who came for that discussion. General Manager (GM) Al Morrissette, and attorney Steve Kennedy explained that the fees were for the costs associated with the use of the buildings, etc. Mr. Morrissette added, “The County maintained a similar fee schedule, but they were not actually imposing the fees.” He suggested representatives from interested organizations were welcome to see him during business hours, to discuss fee reductions for certain activities. Mr. Kennedy suggested those considerations would fall under, “Gifts of Public Funds.” Simply put, a government agency cannot give away public funds to a private person or company.
In order to give special consideration to an organization for their event, the CSD would have to agree to cosponsor that event. In order to do that, without breaking the law, the Board would have to agree that the event serves the public interest.
John Aziz suggested a form, to accompany the Facility Application, which would have specific criteria to be met when applying for co-sponsorship. This, he offered, would eliminate the need for special meetings with the GM for each event, of which there are many.
CSD Board member Michelle Schneider pointed out that Wrightwood is a community of volunteers whose organizations exist to benefit their own community.
Mr. Kennedy agreed, expressing his awe over the sense of community, and volunteerism in Wrightwood.
Board member Chuck Franklin said, “I would hate to push our volunteer organizations out.” At the same time, he understands the need for the fees to be collected.
Contact the CSD office MWF 8 a.m.-1 p.m. (760) 249-3205, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spring sports report
By Gino Lewis
The biggest sports news in our community for the upcoming week falls outside of Serrano. Wrightwood Little League is back this weekend! Opening day is Saturday April 7. Wrightwood Olympian Maddie Mastro will be attending opening day ceremonies and will throw out the first pitch. Opening day ceremonies begin at 9 am with games starting at 10 am.
Two weeks removed from spring break you would expect a busy week for high school sports. That wasn’t the case at Serrano where it was a surprisingly slow week from Thursday March 29 through the Wednesday the 4th. Those games will be covered in our next issue.
Diamondbacks Baseball scored a 7-3 win over the Cougars of Granite Hills (Apple Valley) Tuesday March 27. It was a complete team effort for the Diamondbacks. They used four pitchers, junior Jon Mocherman gave up one earned run over three innings to get the win. Almost everyone contributed at the plate with senior Lucas Higgins leading the way. Higgins went 2-3 with a run scored, three RBIs and a stolen base. For the second week in a row the team didn’t have much time to enjoy a big victory and was back on the field the next day against the Burros of Burroughs High School (Ridgecrest).
The game against Burroughs was a pitching duel. Senior Dylan Madole started the game and gave up only one run over the first 4 innings. The Diamondbacks used both their ace pitchers as Madole was relieved by senior Carson Phillips. Phillips also had a strong outing and held the Burros scoreless his first 3 innings of work. Entering the bottom of the 7th Inning the Diamondbacks trailed 1-0. With the game on the line Dylan Madole made his presence felt at the plate and drove in the game-tying run. Dylan finished the game 2-3 with an RBI. The Diamondbacks had a chance to win the game in the 7th when they had runners on 2nd and 3rd with two outs. Unfortunately, the team couldn’t push the winning run across and ended up losing 2-1 in extra innings.
The tough loss against Burroughs pushed the teams record to 6-8 overall, they are 1-2 in league play. The team will look to bounce back with three games over the next week. The softball team hosts their league opener Friday April 6 versus Sultana. The team has invited the community to attend as they honor our local heroes by having Serrano’s Cadet Corps present the colors, and police officer Robert Jahn will throw out the first pitch.
Serrano’s two winningest teams so far this spring were off last week. The boys’ tennis team had nothing on the schedule. The varsity track and field team was off as well, the team was represented at The King Frosh/Soph Classic Saturday March 31. The meet took place at Martin Luther Jr. High School in Riverside. The girls took third place in the meet while the boys won the whole thing! We also got word that the girls’ team posted the third fastest time in the state in the 4x1600 meter relay at the Chino Relays back on Saturday March 24. The girls in that event were Maddy Elliott, Maribel Aguilar, Elizabeth Martin, and Julia Brenner.
Tue Mar 27 vs Granite Hills(Apple Valley) W 7-3
Wed Mar 28 vs Burroughs(Ridgecrest) L 2-1(8 innings)
Wed Mar 28 at Summit(Fontana) L 8-0
Scores for games played Tuesday April 3rd and Wednesday April 4th will be available in our next issue.
Thursday, April 5
Boys Tennis vs Burroughs(Ridgecrest) 3:00pm
Baseball at Grand Terrace HS 3:00pm
Friday, April 6
Track at Arcadia Invite 9:30am
Baseball at Hesperia 3:00pm
Saturday, April 7
Track at Arcadia Invite 10:30am
Softball at Etiwanda HS - Double Header 9:00am, 11:00am
Monday, April 9
Softball at Desert Christian Academy(Bermuda Dunes) 3:30pm
Tuesday, April 10
Track at Burroughs(Ridgecrest) 3:00pm
Boys Tennis vs. Hesperia 3:00pm
Wednesday, April 11
Baseball vs Sultana(Hesperia) 3:00pm
Softball at Oak Hills(Hesperia) 3:00pm
USFS continues fire fuels mitigation around Wrightwood
By Terri Hill
In their continuing effort to create defensible space around the community of Wrightwood, the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) is currently working on the east side of town.
Chris Matthews, Fuels Battalion Cheif for Angeles National Forest, explained at the Wrightwood Fire Safe Council March meeting, the current project below ‘Helicopter Hill’ involves mastication of 129 acres of dry chaparral. Matthews said, “I’d also like to come back in, and get some these trees limbed up.” If a fire did start in the masticated area, it would be less likely to get up into the trees.” He added that there is still plenty of fuel coming up from Lone Pine Canyon, and this work would give firefighters room to slow the progression of a fire in the area. In recent years, USFS crews have performed fuel modification in an area adjacent to the acreage being cleared currently. Looking at where the Blue Cut fire stopped, on the east side of Wrightwood, it is apparent that both the new dozer lines (cut during the fire) and the previous mastication project were essential to stopping the forward progress of the fire.
This fuel reduction project, one of several planned by the USFS, is fully funded, and satisfies the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requirements. Major areas of environmental concern are the spotted owl, and several species of rare plants. Fuel modification work must not disturb the owls’ habitat, and USFS crews “flag and avoid” designated rare plants.
Other projects that Matthews plans to pursue involve the north side (the ridge between Wrightwood and Pinon Hills), 300 acres on Blue Ridge to the Guffy campground to the south, and Big Pines to the west, “Effectively boxing Wrightwood in,” he explained. Each project will involve its own set of environmental, financial, and logistical issues. “They all have different sets of prescriptions; some are mastication – the crushing and grinding of shrubs and downed tree limbs, some are cut, pile, and burn.”
Contractors will be hired by USFS for the work on the south side, freeing up their work force during fire season. In Big Pines, Matthews reports thousands of piles that have been cut since 2007, and still need to be burned. While the state experienced years of drought, burning was not prescribed.
Wrightwood Fire Safe Council conducts a public meeting on the third Tuesday of each month, 7 p.m. at the Wrightwood Museum. Representatives from USFS, Cal Fire, SB County Fire, LA County Fire, and SB County Code Enforcement report and answer questions about fire safety projects and activities in the San Bernardino and Angeles National Forests.
Mountaineer Progress Newspaper
WEEKLY PUBLICATION • March 29, 2018
Pinon Hills Chamber to sell interest in property
By Michael Palecki
On March 20th, the general membership of the Pinon Hills Chamber of Commerce voted to sell a 51 percent controlling interest in their property to The Door Ministry, also referred to as the “Church.” The proposal/offer to purchase an interest in the Chamber building was initiated by the Church, which has been a tenant of the building for the past three years, in hopes of securing a permanent home. The transaction down payment, interest on the amount to be carried by the Chamber, and monthly payments will provide a steady income for 15 years.
The 700-square foot cinderblock building located at 10405 Mountain Road was constructed by the Chamber in 1957. In time, the Chamber purchased a second lot to the north to be used as a parking lot, and subsequently purchased a third lot east of the Chamber building from San Bernardino County (SBC) when the Pinon Hills Volunteer Fire Department vacated the “Old Fire Station.”
In 1999, the Chamber proposed leasing the vacant portion of its properties to SBC Special Districts for an expansion of the Pinon Hills Park. However, during the next ten years, that proposal was subject to several modifications and was eventually handed off to the newly formed Phelan Pinon Hills Community Services District (CSD). At that time, because grant monies obtained for the park expansion could not be used on leased land, the Chamber agreed to sell two parcels to the CSD. In the agreement, the CSD purchased the parking lot, which had been leased to SBC Special Districts for Community Center parking, and in return leased the parking lot to the Chamber for one dollar per year. On the remaining lot, the Old Fire Station was demolished for the park expansion.
Last Tuesday, more than 50 Chamber and community members heard Chamber President/Church Pastor Bill Davison explain, “Nothing is going to radically change.” Under terms of the proposal the fair market value amounts to $125,000; $70,000 represents the value of the building and $55,000 represents the value of Parcel Number 306705108. A 51 percent share would amount to $63,750 with the Chamber receiving $20,000 as down payment and realizing $16,493.22 in interest earned on $43,750 over a term of 15 years.
Davison conceded that a property tax increase would occur due to the sale and commented, “The Church will pay any increase in taxes up to $3,000 per year.” Additionally, the Church would pay for and provide water, electricity, and gas utilities. In maintaining a 49 percent share, the Chamber would be provided with a place to hold meetings, functions, and events, and would be responsible for 49 percent of building maintenance and improvement costs as well as liability insurance.
In regard to building improvements, Davison mentioned that constructing a disability ramp, removing asbestos ceiling panels, and installing emergency lighting and a new electrical panel would be required to bring the building up to code requirements triggered by the sale. On those issues, there was no estimate on costs. Additionally, the Church would respect and maintain provisions of the parking lot lease through the CSD.
Regarding the proposal, one audience member asked, “Would the Church consider a 50/50 partnership”? To that Davison replied, “No, the Church would not do it without controlling interest because the Chamber Board of Directors changes annually. If the Chamber membership does not approve of the proposal, we will look for a new home.”
A long-term Chamber member commented, “15 new members joined the Chamber on March 19,” alluding to ‘stacking the deck’ of voters. In support of the proposal, a neighbor remarked, “I have lived here since 1972 and we have seen churches come and go at the Community Center. I live right across the street and The Door Ministry has been here longer than any other. They provide stability to the neighborhood and are an inspiration to those using the park.”
In conclusion, although the Chamber Board of Directors had approved the proposal last month, there remained some uncertainty as to whether the By-laws authorized the Board or general membership to make such a pivotal decision. Therefore, in all fairness it was decided the proposal must be approved by both entities. In the end, the purchase proposal for the Pinon Hills Chamber of Commerce was approved in a secret ballot, with 22 in favor and 9 opposed.
March 22, 2018: Rainbows appeared in the Tri-Community, as a series of storms gave way to clear skies, and Serrano’s Center Stage and Bravo! Ensemble opened their production of, The Wizard of Oz. The show opened Thursday, and ran through Sunday. This run was just one weekend, because of the timing of spring break, and other considerations.
Adapted from the book by L. Frank Baum, the play by Erin Detrick is a non-musical version of the classic “No place like home” story. In this retelling, we meet Dorothy Gayle after a tornado has thrown her, and her farmhouse, into the mysterious Land of Oz, and onto the Wicked Witch of the East.
Drama teacher Beverly Quinn was faced with task of filling a larger cast than usual, as parts for Munchkins, Winkies, and Flying Monkeys called for younger actors to supplement the roles played by the high school students. Middle school and elementary students from around the Tri-Community had the opportunity to audition for the show, and 23 of those joined 23 high school actors to complete the cast. Toto was double-cast, so that the pooch with the best temperament for the night could take the stage. Both canines proved their acting chops, as it were.
Lead roles for humans were also doubled-cast. Mrs. Quinn does this for many shows, giving more students an opportunity to shine, and giving herself the chance to showcase more of the talent from her drama classes. Fiona Woodside played a frustrated Dorothy, with little patience for the obstacles to her return home. Kayleigh Balthis played the same role as a more bewildered young girl, than an irritated one. Both performers showed Dorothy’s vulnerability and heart.
Jacob Laycock and Ty Rogoff played the Scarecrow for alternate performances. Again, even as they each played their own Scarecrow, they were both able to bring out the character’s charm, and the wisdom he did not recognize in himself.
Canon Toki and Jared Brown played the Tinman, with all his creaks and squeaks. Jared said, “April Williams put the makeup on for me. I spend about three hours in the (makeup) chair before each performance.” The silver face paint is water based and washes easily, unlike that used in the 1939 MGM film classic, which caused an allergic reaction that hospitalized Buddy Ebsen. He had to be replaced in the Tinman role.
Precise Hooper played the Cowardly Lion, and Destini Sharp and Stephanie Robles shard the role of the Wicked Witch.
Technically, the production was simple, yet stunning. Only a handful of props and set pieces were used onstage. Instead of cumbersome free-standing set walls, which must be moved on and off stage between scenes, images were projected onto a scrim upstage (behind the action). The glimmering Emerald City, the witch’s kitchen, the poppy field, and a starry night were rich with color and depth.
Oz himself was projected onto a scrim, effectively creating the ghost-like image of a bigger-than-life wizard. For his otherworldly voice, multiple actors – Kitara Wishnef, Seth Burris, Sophia Hernandez, and Paige Johnson – spoke simultaneously, and with some added distortion the effect was spooky and ominous. Kitara Wishnef and Seth Burris shared the role of Oz, the man behind the wizard.
May 4, 5, 11, and 12, Serrano Center Stage and The Majestics will perform, Shrek the Musical.
Performances are at 7 p.m., tickets are $10.
Traffic at Baldy Mesa discussed at SJUSD meeting
By Donna Alvarez
The Snowline Joint Unified School District (SJUSD) Board discussed traffic issues at their March 20 meeting. In order to increase safety protocols at Baldy Mesa Elementary School, all but three of the gates used for buses and cars to drop off/pick up students are now closed to traffic. This new configuration began Monday, March 19. According to teacher Cathy Pauly, even though lines were long, most parents were patient and appreciative of the new safety procedures. Baldy Mesa now has three drop-off/pick-up gates. Gate A is on the school’s south boundary on Avenal Road, Gate B is in the back on the west boundary, and Gate C is where cars go through the paved driveway on the north boundary. Karie LaFever stated that when Pinion Hills Middle School went through this same procedure, parent traffic began running more smoothly during week two.
Superintendent Doctor Ryan Holman presented his up-to-date message regarding Snowline’s Long-Term Debt Repayment Plan (LTDRP). Holman discussed twelve points to consider in two categories, which are opportunities to increase revenues and opportunities to decrease expenses. Holman stated that to increase revenue the Snowline District needs to expand in six different areas. He reported that the district’s new web site will increase the connection between the district and the community in a more extensive way, in its marketing and public relations. Other factors that help increase the district’s revenue are increased and regular student attendance, enhancement of existing programs and the creation new programs, upgraded facilities, improvement of customer service, and passage of a general obligation bond. In order to decrease expenses, Holman said the district needs to redesignate specific reserve elements regarding long-term debt repayment, designate annual amounts of long-term debt repayments, decrease water expenses by using artificial turf and drought resistant landscapes, reduce department and site budgets, adjust transportation services, and reduce personnel costs.
During board comments President Christina Behringer mentioned that she appreciated being a judge at the county level for the National History Day Contest. Assistant Superintendent Allan Miller reported that six Snowline students will be attending the competition at the state level. Schools participating are Pinion Mesa Middle School, Serrano High School, and Snowline Academy.
Board member Karie LaFever said the Little Red School House at Phelan Elementary School is being painted to get ready for its Centennial Celebration. The anniversary of demonstrates the growth of the Snowline District and the continuous benefits to its students throughout the years. The enhancements and expansions to existing and new classes and programs represent these benefits. Assistant Superintendent Miller stated, “When our district challenges students, we see our work reflected down the road.”
Opera singer returns to her alma mater
By Terri Hill
March 23, 2018: Jennifer Ashworth was a student at Wrightwood Elementary School (WWE) in the early 1980s. Last week, she visited her alma mater to perform one of her favorite engagements as an opera singer; teaching school children about opera. Jennifer’s program, “Sing a Story,” is geared toward children in elementary grades. Using costumes and props, and prerecorded music, Jennifer involves the class in the story, music and magic of selected operas.
For classes at WWE, she chose, The Magic Flute, by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. First grade students in Laura McKay and Carol Fehrman’s classes were among the participants in Jennifer’s fun and educational program, which she presented to one class at a time. Jennifer started by explaining that in opera, the actors sing their lines. She then instructed them on proper breathing techniques, before teaching them the simple chorus they would sing in their abbreviated run-through of the opera.
The children were eager to participate, taking turns playing the roles of Papageno, Tamino, Pamina, Sarastro, and the Queen of the night. Mrs. McKay commented, “(Jennifer) got some of my shyest students to raise their hands, volunteering to play parts!” Simple costumes and props (like magic wands) transformed the students into princes, princesses, magic people, and even fire and water. “Stickers, stamps, and shiny objects,” Jennifer mused, “help keep their attention.”
Jennifer sang parts of some of the songs, as the children performed their parts. When the princess thought the prince wasn’t interested in her, Jennifer sang Pamina’s Lament, explaining to the youngsters, “In opera, if you’re really sad, you sing a song.”
Jennifer seemed to have the students under her own magic spell, as she told the story of the flute that would make music, even if no one was playing it, enchanting every creature that heard its sweet tune. Indeed, following direction, everyone in the room began smiling and dancing whenever they heard the flute play.
At the end of each session, Jennifer urged the students to write, “the rest of the story” when they returned to class, and invited them to ask questions about opera, and The Magic Flute. No one was particularly eager to leave when the bell indicated the end of the class period.
This is only the second time Jennifer has come back to Wrightwood to sing, in 20 years. In August, 2017, Jennifer returned to sing in her home town for the first time since 1997. Jennifer grew up in Wrightwood. She graduated from Serrano High School in 1992, where she performed in the Mellotones show choir, was Drum Major for the Marching Diamondbacks, and was the Student Director for Concert Band.
After earning her BA in music from UC Berkeley, and Masters in Vocal Performance from Holy Names University, Jennifer moved to San Francisco where she has performed with the Lamplighters Music Theatre since 2001.
Introducing herself and her music to a full house at the Wrightwood Community United Methodist Church in August, Jennifer quipped that she is, “A nerd.” She enjoys teaching her audience, be it children or adults, about music and composers, and eras in which they achieved notoriety.
Mountaineer Progress Newspaper
WEEKLY PUBLICATION • March 22 - 28, 2018
Wrightwood Elementary Celebrates Maddie Mastro, as Hometown Hero
By Donna Alvarez
March 20, 2018: Wrightwood Elementary School’s cafeteria was filled with energy, excitement, and anticipation as students waited for their hometown hero, Olympic Snowboarder Maddie Mastro. Students displayed American Flags, and posters of Maddie to show their enthusiasm.
Maddie took the stage, along with Superintendent Dr. Ryan Holman, to talk about her experience in the South Korean Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. Maddie answered Holman’s questions, which included everything that would interest her young Wrightwood fans. She fully enjoyed the opening ceremonies, one of her favorite activities, where she got to wear the United States Team Uniform, represent the U.S.A. along with 240 of her teammates, and watch the Olympic flame being lit. Maddie talked about the atmosphere of the Olympic Village, where the U.S. team was housed in a skyscraper type building, eating her favorite food ,which was Korean Bar-B-Q, Indian food, and caramel ice cream, meeting new friends from New Zealand, watching the U.S. Women’s Hockey Team take gold, watching 15-year old American speed skater Maame Biney race, and cheering on her snowboarding teammates. Maddie stated that the Olympic fans were the biggest and best crowds ever.
Holman asked Maddie what sport she actually participated in first. It was T-ball here in Wrightwood. He then asked how she handled setting a goal, as she did in PyeongChang, only to have fallen short of the achievement. Maddie said that she had no regrets. She had a plan to complete her hardest trick first in each of her three runs. Even though she fell, she said, “You learn by your mistakes. You go for the next goal. I took a day to re-think my goals, and then set a new goal to compete in the Nationals after the Olympics (where she placed second).” She continued, saying, “In order to accomplish a goal, you may have to say no to many fun things in school, and no to fun things you do with friends. It is a sacrifice. Then, you may have to say yes to more time in the gym and more time in practice.” Maddie shared that on her way home from PyeongChang, she participated in the “Save Korean Dogs” by being a traveling companion for one of the Korean dogs. She said the lucky dog now has an amazing new home in America. As a supporter of shelter and rescue dogs, Maddie has three of her own.
Students at Wrightwood Elementary presented Maddie a signed poster with many positive messages. This was given to her by first grader Aurora Warren. A handmade gold medal was also given to her by newly sponsored snowboarder, fourth grader Michael Morgaridge, who is now being sponsored by Pharmacy Snowboards.
In return Maddie presented Wrightwood Elementary School with an official Olympic flag signed by her. With her enthusiasm and generosity of spirit, Maddie truly is Wrightwood’s Hometown Hero and an inspiration to its young people on many different levels.
Local tree mortality addressed by Cal Fire
By Terri Hill
March 18, 2018: For several months, residents in Wrightwood have been noticing small sap droplets on cars, decks, walkways, and outdoor furniture. The clear substance looks like a fine mist, applied by a spray gun, and it seems to collect on vehicles that are parked out in the open, under pines, or under oaks.
Kathy Smith, a Board member on the Wrightwood Fire Safe Council, was concerned the about the sap, and its probable connection to tree mortality. She contacted Cal Fire Unit Forester Henry Herrera about her concerns. Mr. Herrera came to Wrightwood at the end of January, to survey the tress, and find the source of the sap, as well as to gauge the health of the trees in the area.
Pitch droplets tend to be symptomatic of insect infestation or disease. According to Herrera’s report, many insects secrete a clear, sweet liquid called honeydew. Pine aphids, among other pests, can cause growth reduction in young trees, but natural predators, like ladybugs, tend to keep the population of these insects under control.
Herrera found a multitude of pines in Wrightwood are dead or dying, due primarily to bark beetle infestations. The root of the die-off, he explained, is stress to trees, caused by lack of water. A healthy tree will produce resin that pushes the beetles out when they bore into the bark. Without enough water, the tree cannot produce enough resin to fight off the beetle attack.
Herrera included the following in his report:
A recent communication from Stacy Hishinuma (2018) stated that “…pitch streaming is caused by the California Flatheaded Borer (Melanophila californic)... Attacks by California flatheaded borer are not always fatal but may be if the tree is stressed. Pitching usually means that the tree is attempting to fight off the (borer) infestation…this is usually a good sign.” Herrera added, “There is no cure for bark beetle infested trees.” Some of the most common bark beetles attacking trees in Wrightwood include the California fives-pined ips (Ips paraconfusus), western pine beetle (Dendroctonus brevicomis) and red turpentine beetle (Dendroctonusvalens). Prevention is key and can be achieved by thinning the tree stands to 20’ between main stems. This is the best long term preventative measure. Deep watering high value trees is also an option.
Infested trees should be cut down immediately, and the wood should be chipped and hauled away. Trees that cannot be chipped should be tarped with six (6) mil plastic.
Herrera also observed many oak trees in Wrightwood that are dying from severe broadleaf mistletoe infections. He reported 80% of the crown on many of those trees are infected.
Mistletoe is a parasite that can greatly affect water stress of host trees. Infected branches should be pruned, and for trees with multiple main stems, Herrera recommends cutting away any infected main stems. Complete removal of heavily infected trees will protect nearby healthy trees.
Visit www.fire.ca.gov for more information on tree health and maintenance.
WEEKLY PUBLICATION • March 15 - 21, 2018
PPHCSD Rehabilitation Plans
By Terri Hill
During the March 7 meeting of the Phelan Pinon Hills Community Services District (CSD) the Board of Directors decided on several pieces of business.
Staff has solicited bids for the rehabilitation of the Phelan Community Center and Park parking lot, and the Board approved entering into a Professional Services Agreement (PSA) with TRLS Engineering & Design Services for the project. According to the Engineering manager’s report, “Improvements will include a larger trash enclosure, expanded parking lot to increase turning mobility, regrading to mitigate flooding issues at the Community Center, and (compliance) with current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements.”
The Board also approved the 2018/2019 Budget Assumptions, and the replacement of the Well 9B pump and motor.
General Manager Don Bartz reported on the cost to the CSD of the water “line locate” jobs required for Race Communications’ subterranean builds. The ‘locates,’ as referred to by Bartz, require two to six employees working nine hours per day, and the use of at least one vehicle at $25 per hour. Bartz worked on the numbers and estimates 1700 hours of work, at a cost $120,000 to the CSD, by the time all of the locates have been performed. He spoke with Attorney Steve Kennedy, who reported that according to government code, a Local Agency required to do subsurface investigation may charge the requesting utility/contractor company for the costs.
San Bernardino County Fire Captain Travis Aguirre reported call stats for the Phelan station in February, including 110 medical aid calls, 22 traffic collisions, 4 structure fires, 4 vehicle fires, and 22 investigations. He confirmed that the ban on fire permits has been lifted, and stressed that residents must still contact the department to make sure it’s an authorized burn day.
Sheriff Sergeant Vacarri also reported call stats for Phelan with 707 calls for service, 72 reports taken, and 20 arrests, and Pinon Hills with 222 calls, 19 reports, and one arrest. Vacarri explained that most burglaries involving electronics, like Xbox and PlayStation, are the result of too much information being shared. He said that often, teens will talk too much about the expensive toys they have, or a ‘friend of a friend’ comes to the home, and takes a mental inventory, only to come back later and steal the items. Vacarri suggested that in the case of game systems being stolen, the most likely suspect is either, “The kid who suddenly quit coming around,” directly after the burglary, or “The one who wants to be really helpful with the investigation.”
Susan Drake, Representative from Supervisor Lovingood’s office, announced the next Veterans’ event will be held in Apple Valley, on May 31, 2018. The Mountaineer will publish details as they become available.
SJUSD honors The Heritage School students for Science Fair achievements
By Donna Alvarez
March 6, 2018: Snowline Joint Unified School District (SJUSD) meeting, the boardroom was packed with 26 Middle School Science Fair winners from The Heritage School. The school board honored the excited students Tuesday night. Among them were the three winners: 1st place winner, Sarah Crowley, 2nd place winner, Shane Gage; and 3rd place winner, Brady Elliott. Of the 26 students, 17 will advance to the San Bernardino County Science Fair on April 3rd in Fontana.
During community comments, some controversy occurred regarding the resignation of Dan Andrus, Principal of Serrano High School. While some did not support Andrus, many Serrano teachers spoke in support of him. They stated that he was a great leader, who was very supportive of his teachers and their programs, and was not afraid to stand up for what was right. “He is a man of honor,” they said.
Assistant Superintendent Karen Winkler presented the “2nd Interim 2018-2019 Budget Information” and its projections. Winkler explained the intricacies of the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) and the revenue involved. SJUSD will receive revenue from a one-time money allotment that Governor Brown will send to each of the state’s many school districts. According to Winkler, Governor Brown expects to be able to fully fund Snowline’s LCFF in 2018-2019. Winkler further stated, “Assembly Bill, AB 2808, would increase Snowline’s LCFF rates in 2018-2019. Additionally, there is another proposal to increase LCFF funding (to the state’s school districts) of $1.2 billion. This has not been assigned an Assembly Bill number. This proposal is to help districts that are facing rising operational costs in areas like retirement, health care, transportation, and special education. Both of these initiatives would help Snowline’s budget into the future.”
During board comments, Board member Steve Coulombe addressed the issue of the new housing developments within the Snowline District. The awareness to accommodate the new students and their demography is important for the transition of these new students into SJUSD.
Student school board member Sabrina Cisneros reported that Quail Valley Middle School’s cheerleading squad won a high placement in the National Cheerleading Competition. She applauded Serrano High School for its celebration of art contest regarding Black History Month, which Sabrina herself won, according to Dr. Holman.
Board member David Nilsen proposed that a workshop be held to alert the public on what the district is doing to keep the schools in SJUSD safe. This would help to continue the support the district’s recently passed ‘Safe Area for Everyone’ Resolution, or, S.A.F.E. (See Mountaineer Progress, D. Alvarez, February 22-28, 2018, page 7).
Wrightwood Blues Society All-Stars
By Michael Palecki
March 9, 2018: Friday night at The Yodeler, Wrightwood Blues Society (WBS) President Greg Jones put together a band after learning during the week that scheduled performers-Allison Scull & Victor Martin-had cancelled their concert tour because of a death in Martin’s family. In the tradition of, “The show must go on,” combined with a few telephone calls, the Wrightwood All-Stars came to life for the listening enjoyment of music fans.
All-Star musicians included Greg Jones on keyboards and vocals, Danny Flores playing lead electric guitar, Walter Foley playing rhythm guitar, Irwin Williams playing bass guitar, Dave Leicht on harmonica and vocals, Mike Romaine playing drums, John Burcher Senior & Junior playing saxophones, and Gail Mahler on flute with female vocalists Brittan Egnozzi and Claudia Campbell.
Starting off with a medley of his original songs the mood was jazzy as Jones sang “Lovely Day” and then shifted to R&B for “Stop Whining, Its Only The Blues.” After that his voice became plaintiff and almost spoken word for Bob Marley’s song “Waiting in Vain.” Sliding back to organ, the tempo increased for “Every King Of People” and kept going for the Isley Brothers’ “Work To Do” as Danny Flores hit high shrill notes accompanied by Irwin Williams’ surging bass notes, creating a locomotion to Jones’ vocals. After that, Flores screeched into a wall of sound as Jones sang “Evil Ways” by Carlos Santana.
Following a break, Jones introduced Brittan Egnozzi and Claudia Campbell who sang a sultry version of the George & Ira Gershwin classic song “Summertime,” as Flores and Foley bantered on guitars. After that, the ladies were animated, bouncing harmonies and repetitions off one another and rolling on the river of John Fogerty’s “Proud Mary,” as Mike Romaine pounded a massive drum roll. And then slowing the pace, Jones and Campbell sang a duet for “The Closer I Get To You,” reminiscent of Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway.
Jones introduced WBS Vice President Dave Leicht on harmonica, who began with a solo introduction to Jones’ vocals and keyboards for the Fleetwood Mac song “Doctor Brown.” Once again, the harmonica and Flores’ wailing on guitar channeled a superb musical locomotion. After a reprise with Egnozzi singing “Won’t You Come On Over,” Leicht sang one of his own high-octane songs entitled “Tired” which featured wailing guitars, clinkey piano and blistering harmonica solos careening around his vocals.
Later, John Burcher and his son John Jr. joined the band on saxophones, along with Gail Mahler adding flute to the mix. With the entire Wrightwood All-Stars then in place, tables and benches were pushed aside for dancing to the James Brown power anthem, “I Feel Good.” After that it was time to slow things down in a reverent way, heavy on the horns and mellow on the vocals, for Ray Charles’ epic song “Georgia On My Mind.”
The Wrightwood Blues Society, a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization, strives to encourage, celebrate and disseminate a variety of Blues traditions and creativity. Call Greg Jones at (760) 574-8231 for information on the next quarterly concert
WEEKLY PUBLICATION • March 8-14, 2018
Instructors are key to success of Adaptive Ski School at Mountain High
By Terri Hill
Although the storm they hoped for fizzled, the slopes at Mountain High are still well-groomed each morning, and conditions are great for skiing and snowboarding. That’s what instructors Ken Bisson and David Shu pointed out as we ascended the Snowflake run on the chairlift and watched the activity below. Skiers and snowboarders traversed the slopes, taking advantage of the last two hours of their ski day. I was there to interview some of the 20 specially trained ski and snowboard instructors of the Adaptive Ski/Ride School.
Ken and David rode the lift chair, sitting on either side of me. I was in a bi-ski, a recumbent ski chair, designed to afford people with limited abilities the opportunity to ski. The bi-ski is just one of the rigs available at Mountain High’s Adaptive Ski/Ride School (Adaptive) program.
More than 20 years ago, Lynne Haile and Dan Stormer were responsible for initiating the Adaptive program, and the foundation that still funds the equipment. As Bobby Mourino, Adaptive Ski/Ride School Supervisor, explained, “Stormer was a civil rights lawyer, and part of settlement was designated to fund the school.”
Children and adults can take advantage of the adaptive school. The instructors, Mountain High employees, are certified by the PSIA, Professional Ski Instructors of America, to work with persons of all levels of ability. Physical as well as cognitive disabilities can present obstacles to one’s enjoyment of activities in the snow. The school’s purpose, according to Bobby, is to, “facilitate family and friends’ recreation together, in a winter environment.”
The level of assistance for each student varies. Bisson commented, “We may four instructors to one student, if necessary.” He also explained that how the student steers and maneuvers the bi-ski, depends on the physical injury or ailment. “If the injury affects the legs, the student steers from the waist. If the injury is from the waist down, the student will use his or her shoulders.” Even those without motor function in their upper torsos, can steer by tilting their heads right to left.
The equipment is specialized for particular disabilities as well. Outriggers for the bi-ski act as training wheels, a 3-track is designed for someone with one leg. A student’s walker can be attached to a special apparatus, making it possible to ski standing up. Modifications to each can adjust for ability level and physical support.
An instructor is always tethered to the skier or boarder. Depending on the student’s ability, an instructor will hold on to the bar in the back or hold the straps from distance behind. A typical session includes a run down the bunny slope, a ride on the magic carpet, and one or two chairlift rides for fun trips down the lower slopes, carving s-shaped swoops that you can see from your next lift to the top. Having only attempted skiing once, and failing spectacularly, I was excited to experience the sensation of gliding gracefully down the slope. It was a rush that I can only imagine is liberating to someone whose activities are limited due to physical or cognitive disabilities.
During a good snow season, Mourino said the school probably schedules about 100 adaptive student sessions. He has been working at Mountain High since the “Miracle Year,” 1991. Bisson first started teaching ski school in Wrightwood in 1978. He has been an adaptive program instructor for 15 years. David Shu is a new instructor this year, for both the regular ski school and adaptive. He commented, “Working with the Adaptive school is really rewarding.” It’s obvious to the onlooker, all of the staff feel the same way.
Before the student’s session, answers to written and oral questions provide the instructors with a thorough assessment of the student’s particular needs. Medications, injuries, and emotional temperament are weighed along with the actual physical abilities of the student, to structure the session to accommodate those needs.
A gentleman with cerebral palsy came to Mt. High’s Adaptive School for his first snowboard experience a few years ago. His friend recorded the experience and posted it to You Tube. To see the well-produced 15-minute video, go to https://www.youtube.com/atch?v=ReJ2fOvGWx4.
The video, as well as prices and details for registration, are on Mountain High’s website.
18 Wheeler loses control at 138 & I-15 off-ramp
Residents grow increasingly weary of dangerous I-15 off-ramp
By Terri Hill
On Tuesday, March 6, at approximately 8 a.m. a 2012 Peterbuilt tractor-trailer crashed into the Shell gas station on SR-138 at I-15. California Highway Patrol officials told CBS News that the semi failed to stop as it exited Southbound I-15 at SR-138. The truck crossed the highway, clipping the back of an SUV, then overturned as it slammed into the corner of the Shell station convenience store building. “For reasons still under investigation,” the CHP reported, “the driver failed to stop at the stop sign at the top of the off-ramp, traversed Highway 138 and struck a 1999 GMC Yukon traveling east.” The truck driver and his passenger had to be extricated from the cab, both sustained what the CHP referred to as, “major, but non-life-threatening injuries.” The driver of the Yukon reportedly declined medical attention. SR-138 was closed west of I-15 while County Fire worked to clear the hazardous spill that resulted from the crash.
The latest of a trove of such accidents has stirred up emotions in the Tri-Community, as news outlets remind the public of a similar collision in June 2014. Nicole Brittney Lyle, 18, of Victorville and 16-year-old John Anthony Cabrera Jr. from Phelan, who was known as “John John,” were killed, and three other teens injured when a dump truck carrying concrete exited at Highway 138, came through the stop sign and collided with the teens’ car before crashing into the Shell station.
Residents of the High Desert have, for years, expressed their concerns about the dangerous off-ramp on a steep grade in the Cajon Pass. Trucks coming down the Pass, heading south, have trouble stopping in time on the short ramp. Others have lost their brakes altogether and came to a stop only after colliding with the gas station on the south side of SR-138.
Wrightwood resident Tom Pinard has submitted editorials, for this and other newspapers, and petitioned local and State agencies for a longer, safer off-ramp at that location.
According to Caltrans officials, a new, redesigned off-ramp is in the budget for the year 2020. Commuters and local residents voiced concerns as to how many more fatalities will occur at the location, before the ramp is fixed.
Weakened storm causes minor road issues
Although the storm last weekend fizzled, bringing little rain or snow to the area, traffic was affected on the east and west sides of Wrightwood.
On Friday, March 2, Officer Mumford of the CHP Victorville station posted a warning on Facebook about the heavy fog on Lone Pine Canyon Road was creating low visibility for drivers. Later in the day, Terri Kasinga of Caltrans announced the closure of Highway 2, west of Wrightwood, “due to ice and rock fall between Vincent’s Gap and Islip Saddle.”
Caltrans reopened the road on Sunday, March 4.
Over the weekend, traffic on Highways 138 and 2 were crowded with skiers on their way to enjoy the fresh now at Mountain High. Because the snow level stayed at higher elevations, congestion along SR-2 due to snowplayers stopping on the side of the road was not an issue.
Rental Fees a Hot Topic at the WCSD meeting
By Vicky Rinek
Wrightwood Community Services District held the monthly meeting on Tuesday, March 6, 2018, with a large crowd in attendence. On the agenda were topics including public comments, agency reports and General manager reports.
Public comments were made by John Lenau, regarding the crash at I-15 exit at 138. CERT Volunteer Stretch Signore, spoke on the problems with the required insurance coverage and the rental fees on the community building.
The Sheriff and Fire Departments reported on the activity in Wrightwood. Sheriff Sgt. Vacarri reported the stats for February: 126 calls taken, 8 reports made, 2 arrests, 20 vehicle checks, 15 patrols, and 12 tickets issued. In the West Cajon Valley there were 19 calls taken and 3 reports made. Last weekend 3 units patrolled on Saturday, 2 units on Sunday. Vacarri said, “If you’ve noticed a woman walking on Sheep Creek in Phelan, we checked on her. She is usually barefoot, wearing shorts and a tank-top. She is on a spiritual mission and does not want help. We had complaints; we talked to her, and she has all her faculties and she knows what she’s doing.”
Captain Carl Hegle, of San Bernardino County Fire, addressed the board with the report on activity for Wrightwood Station #14. Fire Chief Kelly Anderson wasn’t able to come, as she was at the scene of an earlier accident at 138 & I-15. Hegle reported two critical injuries from the rollover of the tractor-trailer that had lost its brakes. Three injuries were reported over the weekend: a sledding accident involving an 8-year old who sustained a head injury when she collided with a tree, a 14-year-old who fractured his hip in a similar accident, and a woman fell down an ice chute near Table Mountain, while walking her dog. Rope pulleys had to be used to rescue her. She broke her ankle but is otherwise doing fine. The Sheriff deputies helped find a sitter for the dog.
“We’re getting calls for small brush fires. Everyone in Wrightwood is proactive and when they see smoke, they call,” said Hegle in answer to John Lenau’s query about controlled burns. “We are not (conducting controlled burns) but (Angeles and San Bernardino) Forest Services are. But when in doubt call us.” Hegle also mentioned a number of brush fires called in, almost daily. “Who started the brush fires?” asked Lenau. “They were illegal burns where someone was clearing their property,” Hegle responded. “They were near Hwy 2 and 138.”
Al Morrissette GM made his report. LAFCO is checking on WCSD progress. The assessment records are being changed and updated. QuickBooks is up and running with the help from the CPA Accountant Cecelia Cummings.
UIA up graded the computer, and solid waste records are being transferred into the WCSD computers so the dump cards can be printed at the WCSD office, rather than from Wes Zuber’s computer. “The system is much easier and quicker,” said Morrissette.
He also reported on underground plumbing and outdoor stage electrical repairs.
The hot topic that had the room buzzing was the bump in rental fees for the Community Building to $16 per hour and $50 for use of the kitchen. Users must also provide proof of insurance to cover the Community Building. The fees for the Vivian Park stage would also be collected at $16 an hour. The parking lot usage would cost $16 an hour fee plus a $5 per vendor fee. For non-residents the fees would be slightly higher and a security deposit of $150 would be added to the rental.
Representatives from various organizations expressed their concerns with charging the new fees, which they contend their groups cannot afford. The non-profit organizations, like CERT and Property Owners, serve the community, making it better and safer. Others provide entertainment, cultural events, and programs for children.
Editor’s Opinion: Example: A typical gathering for 4 hours with use of the kitchen would require rental fees of $114.00 for one event. Also, the required insurance from a group would cost between $450 to $2,000 for a year’s coverage.
Examples: the Farmers Market’s rental fees for the parking lot, plus the insurance to operate, could cost them nearly $8,000 a year. The Timberline Lions Club’s monthly meetings at the Community Building and the Museum, calculated under the new fees, would require an annual expense of $2,600. Bingo Night rental would be nearly $1,400 for a year, totaling their cost for all uses of the community buildings nearly $4,500 a year.
Under the old SBCo structure the Timberline Lions paid around half that amount. They, along with other groups, would have to find other accommodations for their meetings and special events, effectively kicking the Timberline Lions Club from the building they built and donated to the community, in good faith, years ago.
The board appeared to be concerned for the various organizations, however, they approved the new rental fees of $16 an hour. They stated that it is expensive to operate the building and everyone using it should pay their fair share. The board put the other rental fee decisions off until next the meeting, scheduled for April 3, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.
Chaparral Instructional Associate arrested
On Thursday, March 1, 2018, school administrators from Chaparral High School obtained information regarding an inappropriate relationship between an employee, 43-year-old Phelan resident Caron Michele Escobar, and students at the school. Caron Michele Escobar is employed with the Snowline Joint Unified School District as an Instructional Associate at Chaparral High School in Phelan. In November of 2017, Escobar was transferred from Eagle Summit Community Day School to her current position at Chaparral High School.
School administrators reported the suspected sexual abuse to the Victor Valley Station. Detectives from the Crimes Against Children Detail assisted with the investigation and interviewed several minors regarding the allegation of sexual abuse.
During the course of the investigation, detectives discovered Escobar had engaged in sex acts with two victims, a 15-year-old male and a 16-year-old male. Escobar also exchanged explicit text communication, which contained obscene matter, with the minors.
On Friday, March 3, 2018, Escobar was arrested for PC 288(c)(1), PC 288a(b)(2), PC 288.2(A) and PC 261.5 (d). She was booked at Central Detention Center in San Bernardino and bail was set for $100,000.
Detectives believe there may be additional victims and are releasing Escobar’s booking photograph. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Specialized Investigation Division, Crimes Against Children Detail, Detective MJ Higgins (909) 387-3615. Callers wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463).
Serving Wrightwood, Phelan, Pinon HIlls and West Cajon Valley Since 1961