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Sonoma County Gazette
Springs Splash by Thomas Martin

Thank You Firefighters!

Nov 22, 2017
by Thomas Martin


Public messages across the community abound showing thanks and blessings to the thousands of firefighters, police, and service workers who worked to save the Springs from being incinerated. On Boyes Hill workers with water trucks stayed on watch through the first two nights of the conflagration. On another day this writer could hear bulldozers creating fire breaks on the hills above although they were hidden from view.

Springs residents were fortunate to skip the devastation that moved through the same area in 1923 and 1964. Hopefully, the lesson we have learned is to trim trees, cut grasses in March, and remove hazardous materials. See the June edition of “Springs Splash” detailing the kinds of measures residents living in fire zones should take.

“Caroling at the Mission” – this Wonderful Sonoma Tradition

On Saturday, December 9 there will be caroling at the Sonoma Mission in three separate programs at 5-6-7 p.m. Tickets became available at the end of November. Some might still be available. Contact the front desk at the Sonoma Mission State Park at E. Spain Street and 1st Street East. Also, there usually vacancies on the night of the program.

Candles, Sprigs of Xmas Tree, Cider, and Cookies…

Those attending the caroling receive a candle and sprig of Xmas tree as they enter the Mission. Musical support is offered by guitar and cello or other instrument. In addition, there is music at the Toscano Hotel. A variety of locations on the east side of the Plaza offer cider and cookies to passers-by. Mark your calendar, Saturday, December 9, with programs at 5–6-7 p.m. These are programs enjoyed by adults and children alike.

Does low rainfall mean drought? Weather – A Topic of Interest!

As of the deadline date for this article (11/10/17) this writer recorded 2.98” of early rain for the Rain Year 2017-2018. Does this mean a light or heavy rainfall for the year? Note: A rain year runs October 1 through September 30.

This writer has collected rain precipitation data for the Sonoma Valley/Boyes Hill area since 2005. The data are sent to CoCoRAHS (Community Coordinated Rain and Hail Studies) at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. The data is used by NOAA (National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration) and weather researchers around the world. Data is gathered from 65,069 participating reporters in the USA, Canada, and the Bahamas. Sonoma County boasts reporting from 140 stations. There are at least 4-5 reporters between Sonoma and Glen Ellen.

Early and Final Rain Data – Boyes Springs, 2005 – 2017

Rain DataWhile predictions have perils, it is worth to note that the two highest early reports (2009 and 2016) turned out to be among the three highest reporting years. Although the early rainfall was low, 2005-2006 resulted in the highest rainfall of the reported years. How will the 2017-2018 rain year end, average, below average, or a high year?

California Cumulonimbus (CoCoRAHS California Newsletter, Fall 2017) reports the beginning of a La Nina year. Governmental predictors believe Northern California will be in a normal pattern. However, they predict a drier than normal year for Southern California. CC reports that a heavy rain year is usually greater than a “normal” rainfall in seven cities from Eureka to San Diego. For information about CoCoRAHS go to and Learn how to become a CoCoRAHS reporter.

Coming Events:

Springs Community Action (SCA) meets at the La Luz Center on the third Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. The SCA promotes the well being of residents in the Springs, that is El Verano, Boyes Hot Springs, Fetters Hot Springs and Agua Caliente.

Sonoma Valley Democrats Holiday Party – Monday, Dec. 11, 6-8pm at the Springs Hall. There will be music. Volunteers are planning a smashing successful party. The Club will supply liquid refreshment.


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