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Penngrove Station by Lyndi Brown - September 2015


Penngrove Station by Lyndi Brown - September 2015

by Lyndi Brown

Plywood or Mural? Do you see plywood panels covering Penngrove Market’s windows? I don’t. I see a great canvas for a community mural. Petaluma artist Jason Holtz envisions a Sonoma Mountain scene dotted with farm animals. Jason, age 20, grew up doing art projects with his PTown neighbor Jackie Yurth. He looks forward to working with another young artist or two, and have community members add a cow, chicken, horse, or whatever. Building owner Martin Sessi will prepare the panels with a primer, and add a finish coat when the mural is complete. The budget is $600 or less, and paint supply businesses can help out. A panel will recognize donors, and there will be a community bulletin board. If you want to gaze at a mural instead of blank plywood, donations can be made at JavAmore Café. Make checks to Rebuild Penngrove at any Wells Fargo branch. For details, talk to Kim Hanson or yours truly. 

HAWAIIAN SHIRTS and TIKI TIME – Who doesn’t love a taste of the islands in your own backyard? Get your hula happening at the 6th Annual Hawaiian Luau on Saturday, Sept. 19th at Penngrove Park. I love this end-of-summer ritual. Is it the Kalua Pig, Hawaiian style chicken (from Petaluma Poultry), Hawaiian dancers and music or the whole gestalt? And, you could be the lucky winner of a Hawaiian vacation for two, with air and car. Raffle tickets $10 each or 6 for $50. The event is a Penngrove Social Firemen fundraiser to improve and maintain the Penngrove Park. Social time is at 4:30 pm, with dinner at 6:00 pm, at the park, 10800 Main Street. Get your tickets by advance pre-sale at JavAmore Café, or call Kim Hanson at 707-794-1516 to charge by phone: $25 adults; $10 children ages 6 -12 $10, and free under age 5. 

Penngrove Post Office is the front porch of our little burg. That’s where we bump into each other, exchange tidbits and learn the news. We have a new postmaster, Mary Vitorelo. She joined the USPS in 1980 and has worked in the North Bay Processing Center (bulk mail), at the Casa Grande station, an most recently was Healdsburg’s acting postmaster. Mary took time out to raise her five children, now ages 21 to 30. She supervises two clerks (Pat and Sharon), two rural carriers and two relief carriers. Who knew ours was such a complex place? She remarks how important this station is, especially since the Penngrove Market building closed from fire. Mary finds the Penngrove pride is second to none. Customers are down to earth, friendly and patient. “It’s contagious,” she said. “Now I’m proud of Penngrove, too.” Another news flash: clerk Pat Hall is retiring at the end of the year after 30 years with the USPS. She is looking forward to travel and being with her nine grandchildren, aged 14 months to 20 years of age. 

Next door, Redwood Montessori School has new owners, Aishwarya Kancharla and Daniel Turner. They take over from Kim and Jeff Mattison who founded the school in 2001. When I met Aishwarya in front of her school, she was madly getting ready for opening the school in mid-August. The new owners worked alongside the Mattisons since last winter to really get the feel this treasured school It is licensed to serve 36 children between the ages of 24 months through Kindergarten. 

Penngrove’s Superburger is moving this Fall to the Grapevine in Cotati (where Masala Jack’s used to be, @ 7981 Old Redwood Hwy.). Owner Bill Cordell says he expects to open in October, after the beer license transfer and building improvements are done. There will be seating for 40 inside and 20 outside. It will be the same great Superburger. Cordell grinds choice beef for your burger and you can expect 16 beers to choose from. The menu choices will expand a bit in the lamb burger and wild game area, including elk and boar half-pounders. His grass-fed beef comes from Stemple Ranch in West Marin.