Tuesday, December 24, 2013

AAUW Presents: A Look Back at Amador’s History – Wed Jan 15

On January 15, 2014, the Amador Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) will be presenting an evening with author and historian Carolyn Fregulia who will be discussing her books about the history of Volcano and of Amador County. This will be a fascinating look back at the development of the Gold Country and its residents, builders and important characters.

Ms. Fregulia has published three books including her new book, Silently They Speak, which focuses on the history of Volcano during its first ten years, from 1848 to 1860. Her previous books, Italians of the Gold Country, and Logging in the Central Sierra are also popular. All books will be available for sale.

Please come and enjoy this historic presentation on Wednesday January 15 from 6:30 to 8:00 PM at the Margaret Dalton Children’s Center, 975 Mission St.in Jackson. The program is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation’s Grant to the Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School

The newly founded Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation makes its second charitable contribution in the form of a grant to help facilitate the painting of the historic Sutter Creek Grammar School’s steeple. Pictured here is Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation (SCCBF) Chairman Frank Cunha, awarding the grant to S.C. Historic Grammar School Restoration Committee members Deedie Calmes, Judi Bartholomew and Lisa Klosowski. Also present, representing the Amador Unified School District are Wally Upper, President of the School Board and Dick Glock, Superintendent.

The Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation was founded in late 2012 and is dedicated to the restoration, preservation, and development of Sutter Creek’s historic assets, both now and for the future. The SCCBF made their first financial grant less than 1 year after being founded, to the Monteverde General Store Museum. This financial grant to the historic Sutter Creek Grammar School is the second, but hardly the last financial grant that they will make. Their list is of targeted projects grows by day. Sutter Creek can look forward to seeing many more projects funded by this proactive and aggressive Foundation. Keep your eyes out for the South Main Parking Lot historical display & park development and many other wonderful projects that this Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation has coming.

The Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation (SCCBF) hopes to increase the public’s awareness of Sutter Creek’s diverse history and encourages everyone to please join in and help preserve this wonderful city for our future generations. For more information on this proactive organization you can visit www.sccbf.org or call 209-560-6880.

The historic Sutter Creek Grammar School is a majestic building which is on the National Historical Registery#76000477 and also on the California State Historical Registry.  Realizing the financial hardship that the school district faces, a handful of local women have set out to raise the money needed to do repairs. They formed the Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School Restoration Committee in 2012 and have been on a roll ever since, raising over $8,000 in the last 18 months.

The Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School, built in April 1871, is a huge piece of our history. The old Grammar School housed classrooms full of children, after school day care, the Train Museum, Dance Studios and much more over the last 142 years…now sits quiet and empty. Its paint has chipped off exposing the original wood, the attic is now home to pigeons, the front stairs and the fire escape stairs have collapsed and some windows are broken out.

Randy Ronk and Son Painting were awarded the job of painting the steeple and the chimneys, which will happen October 5th-7th.  

It is the Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School Restoration Committee and the Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation’s goal to get the school back into shape so it may once again be open to the citizens of Sutter Creek to be used and enjoyed. If you would like to make a donation for future repairs to the school, please mail them to Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation, P.O. Box 24, Sutter Creek, CA  95685. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Preston Castle Wine Tasting Tour – Sat Sept 14

IONE, CA:  Taste the fine wines of Amador County and tour the historic Preston Castle.  Experience the history and feel the sensation of the past.  Attendees will sample fine wines, poured by 15 different wineries, from commemorative Preston Castle wine glasses.  A new addition this year is Turley Wine Cellars, a renowned producer of outstanding Zinfandels.

Sip a glass of wine, enjoy a variety of gourmet hors d'oeuvres, and listen to live music on the patio and in the Castle. Local favorite Manny Sosa will be playing in the Wine Cellar.

Val Starr & The Blues Rocket, a premier blues and blues rock band, will be playing on stage in the courtyard. They bring a unique style of traditional blues infused with blues songs from rock artists to create an entertaining show for dancing on the floor, dancing in your chair, drinking and listening or just listening and enjoying yourself!  Val Starr is a top class vocalist and shares the stage with top notch musicians to create the best in today's California Blues.

You can also wander the public areas of the Castle. Docents will be available to answer your questions.

This has become one of Amador County's premier wine events, and is always a sellout, so get your tickets now!

Participating Wineries:

Amador Cellars, Bella Grace, Bray, Clos du Lac, Drytown, Karmere, Nine Gables, Scott Harvey, Sera Fina, Sobon, Tanis, TKC, Turley, Vino Noceto, Wine Tree Farm.

Tickets, $40, available at Clark's Corner in Ione or online at www.prestoncastle.com

Preston Castle Wine Tasting and Tour
Saturday, September 14, 3 pm to 6 pm
Preston Castle, Ione - About 35 miles southeast of Sacramento, CA off HWY 104 in Ione
Tickets: $40
Sponsored by Preston Castle Foundation
                        Jerry Funderburgh and Marie Nutting, Chairpersons

About Preston Castle Foundation
The strikingly beautiful Romanesque style Preston Castle, on a hill in Ione, was actually the administration building for the Preston School of Industry, the first major attempt in California at rehabilitating, instead of just impris­­­oning, young offenders.  Opened in 1894, the Preston School of Industry became a leader in the juvenile prison reform movement by giving convicted boys a real chance at life by educating them not only in academics, but in all of the useful trades of the time.  Closed in 1960, when the Preston Youth Authority moved into a new administration building down the hill, the Preston Castle was left to deteriorate due to weather, vandalism, and general neglect.  It now serves as a vacant, but vitally important landmark for Ione, Amador County, and the Motherlode.  It is a California State Historic Landmark and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Mission of the Preston Castle Foundation is to preserve, rehabilitate, and utilize the historic Preston Castle site.  This year we are pushing hard to obtain our own utility connections that will ultimately lead to acquiring the title to the property.  To help raise money for this important project, the Foundation sponsors several fund raising events throughout the year.  In addition to the upcoming Wine Tasting and Tour on September 14, we will hold the exciting and spooky Preston Castle Halloween Haunt the two weekends prior to Halloween, Oct. 18, 19, 25, and 26, and a holiday fair/bazaar called Old Tyme Christmas on December 14 and 15.

Also, Castle Tours are available on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays, and selected Thursdays, from 10 am to 1 pm.  Help Save The Castle and learn more about our history, events, and tours by visiting www.prestoncastle.com.  All contributions are tax deductible. 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

All Aboard, Historic Ione Train Depot Rides the Rails

Ione, CA (August, 8, 2013) – On Thursday, on or about the noon hour, August 8, 2013, the City of Ione will be moving history. After living at its current location for just over 135-years, the historic Ione Depot departs from its old home to start a new life. Preservation of the historic icon started May 2010 with the exchange of $1 between Union Pacific Railroad and the City of Ione. It continues tomorrow with the planned relocation of the depot adjacent to the historic Ione rail yard. Starting at Depot Road, the approximately 150-foot long, 30-foot wide wooden building will be moved about 2,000 feet to its new home on Mill Street, still on the right side of the tracks. Originally used as a passenger and freight depot since January, 1877, the depot will become a local railroad museum and community event center. The goal is to preserve the unique rail road history invaluable to the Mother Lode and California.

A Historic Resource Evaluation completed by San Francisco-Based Garavaglia Architecture, Inc. (30 August 2012) brings to life the historicity and value of the Amador Branch RR Depot, Ione, CA.  In the well-documented report that can be found on the City of Ione’s web page, Garavaglia concludes “the building appears to retain a relatively high degree of integrity both interior and exterior.”  The interior retains many of its original or early finishes and features including wood trims, original interior doors, built-in furniture, and wood wall finishes. All of the original six-over-six wood windows are intact with the eastern portion of the building housing rooms related to the ticketing and passenger functions of the building, and the western portion of the building function as a large open warehouse that was used for freight and storage purposes.

Support from the Jackson Rancheria, a grant from the National Trust of Historic Preservation, Lowes in Jackson, CA, and generous contributions of time, materials, and funds from many people have made this possible. With the relocation marking the beginning of a large renovation effort, continued investments in preserving the rail history of the Amador Railroad and the history of the gold country must continue if this effort is to succeed. Please consider making a contribution to help preserve the valuable piece of California and Amador Rail history.

For more information on the City of Ione’s Train Depot Preservation project, visit: www.ione-ca.com.

The City of Ione incorporated in 1953 and is a General Law City with 13 FT, 15 PT, and 5-7 seasonal employees.  Located in the fertile Ione Valley of Amador County, Ione is among the historic foothill communities  established during California’s 1849 Gold Rush.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Historic Live Steam Powered Sawmill to Have Expanded Exhibits at Amador County Fair

Plymouth, CA. (June, 2013) – This year’s Amador County Fair, July 25-28, will once again feature live operation of the steam powered sawmill on the Amador County Fairgrounds.

Sawmill shows are daily at 11:00 am and 3:00 pm, and Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00 pm.  “You haven’t experienced the Amador County Fair if you haven’t seen this sawmill operate”, said Ken McCoy, long time volunteer and docent.

The authentic 19th century sawmill is run by the powerful 1907 Corliss single cylinder steam engine with a 7 ft. flywheel, and will once again turn giant logs into useful boards as they pass through the 48” circular blade.  The1890 Smith & Sayer steam engine will again come to life to drive the sawdust removal conveyor. 

In addition to the huffing and puffing engines, and flying sawdust, there will be an expanded machine tool exhibit featuring restored 19th and 20th century machine tools. Included will be a circa 1907 Sebastian lathe which originally was used to make shell casings for the U.S. Navy. Also on display will be a Rockford Horizontal Milling Machine of the same vintage. The tools will be operating as originally configured with power being transmitted from an overhead line shaft. 

On the logging side, an operating Steam Donkey similar to those used to pull logs out of the woods in 19th century Amador County will be fired up. The steam-driven winches will be operated by docents who will provide overviews and conduct tours. 

All are welcome to visit the demonstrations and talk to the volunteers who build and operate the exhibit. Learn how the Steam Donkey’s Dutton boiler is fired up and the history of its use on a pile driving barge in San Francisco Bay. Watch the sawmill crew muscle a huge log onto the carriage that moves it through the 48” saw blade. Watch as the Sawyer communicates with hand signals to direct the efforts of setters and off-bearers. Take a look in the Engine Room and be hypnotized by the rhythmic machinery huffing and puffing, turning steam into 60 horse power. 

         According to Bill Braun, President of the Amador Sawmill & Mining Association (ASMA), “Fulfilling our mission to restore and demonstrate historic equipment is fun, but more important is our increased ability to educate young people about their American heritage. By recreating a live 19th century Sawmill, we provide a glimpse into Amador County history and one of the three traditional industries here, Logging, Mining, and Agriculture”.

The Amador Sawmill is one of the last operational steam powered sawmills in California. The sawmill is operated by ASMA, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization supplying rough-cut lumber and timbers for projects that require time-period saw marks for their restoration. The sawmill is a living history museum using turn of the century (1890-1910) steam power operated by volunteers. The Amador Sawmill’s mission is preservation and education by acquiring, restoring and preserving authentic historic working sawmill equipment, and to provide Public education through display and demonstration.  



Monday, July 8, 2013

Murder Mystery Dinner Party at the Preston Castle - Sat Aug 3

Murder Mystery Dinner Party at the Preston Castle

Saturday, August 3, 6 pm to 9 pm

The succulent aroma of home cooked pasta is drifting from New York City's most popular Italian Restaurant, La Speranza, but something else is heating up the kitchen...cold blooded murder! Restaurateur Pepi Roni has been shot in the back with his own pistol. Tonight, his family and friends will gather to pay their respects to poor Pepi, but one of the guests won't be shedding any tears. Get ready for Pasta, Passion and Pistols.....
Enjoy a sit down dinner in the Preston Castle Courtyard and be part of the action as events unfold around you.  Observe, ask questions, and use your super sleuth skills to figure out “who done it?” 
A no host bar will have a nice selection of drinks available for purchase.  Tickets: $45, limited to 130 guests, are available at Clark’s Corner in Ione or online at www.prestoncastle.com.  Call 209-256-3623 for more information and/or tickets.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Grand Re-Opening of the Amador County Museum and Grand Re-Opening of the Kennedy Tailing Wheels Park - Sat June 15

Grand Re-Opening of the Amador County Museum and Grand Re-Opening of the Kennedy Tailing Wheels Park
Saturday, June 15, 2013
Guests: Congressman Tom McClintock, State Sen. Tom Berryhill,  City of Jackson and CalTrans officials

  • Kennedy Tailing Wheel #4, one of California’s most unique historic landmarks now has a dramatic new 7-story steel and glass protective enclosure
  • County-wide celebration of newly remodeled Kennedy Tailing Wheels Park
  • County Museum opened for the first time in 5 years
  • Gold mining-era exhibits, historic railroad display, Mountain Men, demonstrations
  • Free BBQ Hot Dog lunch will be served to the first 500 guests.
For more information and directions to V.I.P. parking, contact:
Keith Sweet, Jackson City Council/Event Chair, 209-223-2698, kgsweet1@comcast.net
Kennedy Tailing Wheels
Kennedy Tailing Wheels Park: 9 am – 1 pm
Jackson Gate Road, Jackson, CA
Ceremony and Speakers: 11 am

The 58-foot tall landmark Kennedy Tailing Wheels are 100 years old this year and were operated by the Kennedy Gold Mine virtually non-stop from 1914 to 1942. The majestic wooden wheels were an amazing feat of engineering in 1913 and are still awe-inspiring today.

The wheels represent one of the first mitigation efforts in California toward an environmental hazard – the original four wheels lifted tailings from the Kennedy Mine out of the creek drainage to an impound dam to keep them from polluting area streams.

A seven-story-tall steel enclosure has been built to protect Wheel #4, in the best condition after a century of work and weather. A dramatic glass wall allows visitors to view the wheel from outside the enclosure.

A $596,000 grant administered by CalTrans and over $100,000 in community and city funds paid for the enclosure and a complete remodel of the 1970s-era park surrounding two of the wheels.

New interpretive displays explain how the Kennedy Mining Company met the challenge of major environmental mitigation requirements in the early 1900s.

Former State Senator Clare Berryhill attended the original dedication of the Kennedy Tailing Wheels Park in 1973. His son, current State Senator Tom Berryhill, and Congressman Tom McClintock are scheduled to attend the June 15 dedication ceremony.

Tailing Wheel #4 Before

Tailing Wheel #4 New Structure

 Amador County Museum
Open 10 am – 2 pm
Amador County Museum
225 Church Street, Jackson, CA

The Amador County Museum is reopening after being closed to the public five years ago due to seismic requirements and lack of funds for needed remodeling.

The Museum is housed in the 1859 home of Dr. Ambrose and Phillipa Brown. Hundreds of volunteer hours and community donations have been spent on the seismic retrofit and refurbishment of the historic structure and beautiful grounds.

The Museum is dedicated to the history of Amador County. Among its curiosities is a Bordello Room illustrating the city of Jackson’s colorful past as one of the Gold Country’s “Sin Cities.”

Also on the museum grounds are three large-scale working models of a gold mine, stamp mill and the famous Kennedy Mine Tailing Wheels.

Amador County Museum 

Kennedy Gold Mine & Vista Point
The nearby Kennedy Mine preserves the facilities of what was one of the deepest gold mines in the world. Docent-led tours are held on the weekends, March – October.

Vista Point park on the west side of Highway 49/88 overlooks the entire Kennedy Mine site. Eight new interpretive murals are now displayed at this “classroom” for travelers to Amador County.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

History of Carson Pass Guided Walks

Learn about Early California, Pioneer and Gold Rush History on the Mormon Emigrant Trail at Carson Pass. A half mile loop with less than 100 feet of elevation loss and gain and appropriate for all walkers. Dogs on leash welcome.
When: Fridays and Sundays from 10 to 11 AM. June 7-  Sept 8
Where:: Carson Pass Information Station on Highway 88, about two miles east of Caples Lake. 
Cost: FREE but parking fees or passes apply.
For more information, call the Carson Pass Station (209) 258-8606

Preston Castle Foundation Presents: "Because: A Tribute to the Beatles" - Sat June 22

IONE, CA:  Come Together and Twist and Shout to Save The Castle.  Join Because – the area’s premier Beatles Tribute Band for a wildly entertaining evening of fun and music on the beautiful Preston Castle Courtyard.  Because is a Northern California based Beatles Tribute Band, a band that strives to capture the imagination of both the old and young. Their pride is in their attention to detail: from the way that they look and move to the way they sing and play, they will whisk you away to the 1960's. Because brings to their live performances a youthful energy and playfulness that is the sheer essence of The Beatles.

Gates open at 6:00 pm with a no host bar and you can tour the outside farm museum. Show starts at 7:00 pm. Snack food and a wide selection of drinks will be available for purchase.  $25 in advance, $30 at the door.  Tickets are available at Clark’s Corner in Ione, or online at www.prestoncastle.com.  Call 209-256-3623 for more information and/or tickets.  Please, no outside alcohol.

WHAT: Because – a Tribute to the Beatles
WHEN: Saturday, June 22, gates open at 6:00 pm
PRICE: $25/$30 at the door
WHO: Sponsored by Preston Castle Foundation
WHERE:  Courtyard, Preston Castle, Ione, CA, 35 miles southeast of Sacramento, CA off HWY 104 in Ione

About Preston Castle Foundation:
The strikingly beautiful Romanesque style Preston Castle, on a hill in Ione, was actually the administration building for the Preston School of Industry, the first major attempt in California at rehabilitating, instead of just imprisoning, young offenders. Opened in 1894, the Preston School of Industry became a leader in the juvenile prison reform movement by giving convicted boys a real chance.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Pride of Ione Foundation presents historical documentary on Ione Homecoming - Thurs May 9

On Thursday May 9th, at 6:00 PM, the first historical documentary on Ione Homecoming will be shown at Clark’s Corner. Tickets are available at Clark’s for $10 each. If you stay for a prime rib dinner, Clark’s will donate 20% of each dinner to the Foundation. This is a great opportunity for residents and guest to celebrate, enjoy, and understand the rich history of the Ione Homecoming. 

The Pride of Ione Foundation is a newly formed organization with the primary purpose to preserve the rich history of the Ione Valley, share its memories and connect people. They are creating educational programs, providing living, interactive historical archives that everyone can access and contribute to. 
Plans include video documentaries, a quarterly  newsletter, beautification projects, commemorative photo books, soldier packages, welcome baskets for new residents and a memorial garden to name a few. 

Volunteers, members and sponsors are needed in support of this community centric program. For more information, Contact  Andrea Bonham at 209-304-4818,  email: info@prideofione.org, or log on to www.prideofione.org

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Kennedy Mine Deep Pit BBQ - Sat May 18

Spend some great time outside at the annual Kennedy Mine Deep Pit BBQ.  Featuring Plasse's special recipe beef and beans,  Kathy Simmons world famous desserts...
Old Soles and The Feather River Band will be providing music on the day, starting at 5 going til at least 9 p.m.

A horseshoe tournament will start much earlier in the day. 50:50 split.

Wine at the no host bar is supplied by Vino Noceto.

This fundraiser benefits both the Amador County Recreation Agency and the Kennedy Mine Foundation.

Attached is the BBQ Poster... Print it out and share with others.  Get you tickets now before they all run out!

Tickets are always available at the ACRA office, and are also available at Davenport Properties on Main Street Jackson, and City Hall in Jackson.

See you all there!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School begins Phase 1 Renovation

The beautiful and historic Sutter Creek Grammar School will begin phase 1 renovations this last Sunday, April 7th.

This majestic building is on the National Historical Registery#76000477 and also on the California State Historical Registry.  The citizens of Sutter Creek see the importance of preserving their local history and that is why the fund raising for this renovation has been so successful. After a year of fund raising, we are pleased to announce that we are ready to start Phase 1 of the Renovations, which will entail the removal of unwanted inhabitants and sealing the gaps between the roof and the walls where bats, pigeons and now raccoons are getting into the attic.

The next phase will be the clean up and sterilization of the attic, among other renovations that will take place to get the building open to the public again.

Everyone is invited to come by this Sunday April 7th to celebrate the beginning of the renovation and to witness what a community can do when they put their minds to it. The Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School is located on the Elementary School Property between Broad and Cole Streets with the cross street of Randolph. We alos must remind the public that being on school property during the week is not allowed, so please join us this Sunday.

Thank you to all who attended the Mardi Gras Party and Cajun Cook-Off events and to those who donated. All of you helped raise this money so that the renovations can begin!

Lisa Klosowski
Historic Sutter Creek Grammar School Restoration Committee

(209) 267-1344


Friday, March 22, 2013

FUNDRAISER: Preston Castle presents "Amador Wedding Faire 2013"

IONE, CA - Engaged couples need not think Disneyland or Vegas to dream of being married in a castle, when the bride and groom can be king and queen for a day at the Preston Castle in Ione, California. To assist in making those dreams come true, AmadorWeddings.com and Preston Castle Foundation announce the 2013 Amador Wedding Faire on Saturday, April 7, 2013 from 12 Noon to 4PM.

“What princess bride wouldn’t want to be married in a castle?” said Carol Harper, Editor of Amador Community News, founder of AmadorWeddings.com, as well as the event’s coordinator. “We’re just fortunate that Sacramento has an impressive-looking one, right in their own backyard, here in Amador County. It’s such a quick, beautiful drive, and so many resources for those who want to make their wedding a day to remember. What better venue than a castle? Short of having to drive to Europe, the next best thing would be to book their wedding at a Castle right here in America.”

The Preston Castle was built between 1890 and 1894, and has had historical significance for California and Amador County. It has been named a California State Historical Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Plans have been ambitious to make it a place where both tourists and communities could come together and realize the value of such an edifice.

“The Preston Castle Foundation is composed entirely of volunteers, and all our efforts are directed at preserving and restoring the Castle for future use,” said Karl Knobelauch, PCF Vice President. “Events like these help gain exposure for the Castle, not only as a venue for weddings, but for other events as well. Fundraising is the crux of making the renovations for this structure not just a dream, but a reality.”

The Preston Castle has hosted several events, even on a national level. Additionally, the Castle has hosted photographer days, wine tasting events, and music concerts for local and regional musicians and bands.

 “I remember the first time I was driving to Ione from Sacramento, and saw the castle about a mile away as I was coming into town, “said Harper. “I was like, ‘Wow! What is that?” I took the tour, and have since attended several music events and fundraisers at the Castle, but they’re still in need of many renovations and repairs.”

The Preston Castle’s most current and critical renovation needs are working restrooms, flooring and ceiling work, room renovations and much more. For more information, the history and their current fundraising needs, visit: www.PrestonCastle.com

The Wedding Faire itself is planned to be simple and excellent, with a focus more on the Castle itself as an impressive locale that would truly make a wedding a historic day to remember, for both Castle and couple. Sacramento and Stockton wedding professionals are encouraged to participate as well. “Bring the entire party up here to Amador County and make a weekend to remember,” said Harper. “We have wine tasting, shopping in our historic gold country downtown districts, tours of the local gold mines—this faire is a great opportunity for not just brides and couples to check out the Castle, but the entire public to come and take a look around. It’s hoped that many more can capture the vision of the Castle for their own fundraising events, music concerts, business meetings, church events, and so forth. But there’s still so much to be done towards restoration and renovation. It is worth the investment to, at the very least, come and see.”

Those who have never been to the Preston Castle are encouraged to come to the Faire, walk around the Castle grounds, and take a mini-tour. Admission for the event is only $5, of which all proceeds go to the Preston Castle Foundation.

Local and regional wedding professionals and vendors are welcomed to participate and support the Preston Castle Foundation by signing up for a booth or table display space. Vendor booths are $100, table display vendors are $50, of which a very generous portion goes to the Foundation. Event sponsorship is $250, all of which goes to the Preston Castle Foundation.

 “AmadorWeddings.com is a part of Amador Community News, and I’ve always tried to be on alert, not only about the assets of California’s historic home towns, but what is needed to preserve our history,” said Harper. “Amador County’s gold country is a treasure, and one of California’s best kept secrets. It is time that surrounding metros realize that our assets and treasures need renovation and upkeep for the benefit of future generations…and their weddings, too!”

Contact Harper at acneditor@gmail.com or visit AmadorWeddings.com for more information and to register. After the Faire, AmadorWeddings.com will be an ongoing fundraising site for the Preston Castle Foundation.

About the Preston Castle Foundation: PrestonCastle.com
About Amador County: TourAmador.com
About Ione, California: www.ione-ca.com/home/ione
About Amador Community News: NewsAmador.com, facebook.com/AmadorCounty

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Quilts of Honor" Founder Recognized - Sat Feb 9

Sierra Amador Chapter NSDAR invites the public to join us February 9th, 12:30 for potluck and 1:00 Speaker, at the American Legion Hall on Sutter Hill, corner of Airport Road and Highway 49.
Gail, who has been recognized by the White House as a Vietnam Veteran "Champion of Change", has (with her volunteers) provided over 3000 quilts to veterans in appreciation for their sacrifices.  She will receive the DAR Community Service Award for the ongoing work in our Sierra Foothills which continues to be felt all over the world.
To learn more about her work, check out: http://www.quiltsofhonor.org/index.html

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Volunteers Needed at Indian Grinding Rock

Volunteers Needed at Indian Grinding Rock SHP Come to the February 5th training and join the park docents
Pine Grove—
If you’d like to get involved with Indian Grinding Rock State Historic Park, now is a good time to volunteer. The park has scheduled docent training for February 5 from 10 AM to 3 PM for people interested in working at the park as school tour guides, museum workers, and interpretive assistants. Pre-registration is required by January 28. Contact Wendy Harrison at to sign up at: Wendy.Harrison@parks.ca.gov
Every fall and spring, 4th graders from throughout the region tour Indian Grinding Rock to learn about the park’s unique cultural and physical history. Volunteer docents lead small groups of students and their teachers around the park’s reconstructed Miwok village, including a visit to the actual grinding rock, the largest of its kind in the nation.

Tour guides escort the students to the Miwok Roundhouse, which is used by Native Americans for dancing and ceremonial events. Docents help staff the Chaw’se Regional Indian Museum where they explain various Miwok artifacts and demonstrate how they were made and used. Many docents enjoy working and maintaining the park’s garden that contains native plants used by the Miwoks for a variety of purposes.
Docents also have access to the park’s exceptional library on California Indians, have free use of the park, and can earn passes to other California State Parks.

Docents meet on the first Saturday of every month to learn more about the historic Miwok way of life and how to help visitors understand the park’s many unique features. Volunteers must complete the park’s training before they can serve as docents.

Space is limited, so please contact Interpreter Wendy Harrison to reserve your spot no later than January 28: Wendy.Harrison@parks.ca.gov or (209) 795-7980.

The training will be held in the park’s museum and may involve some walking. Attendees should dress comfortably and bring a brown bag lunch.

For more information, call 2092967488
or drop by the park and talk to one of the staff. Indian Grinding Rock State Historic Park is located at 14881 Pine GroveVolcano Road, Pine Grove, CA 95665.