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Forestville - The Good Life - December 2015


Forestville - The Good Life - December 2015

by Richard Naegle

The Good Life…

Here in the country, we value privacy and independence; we also highly value community. What we take for granted as “the good life” is supported and maintained by caring locals who do not seek the limelight. As Bilbo once said, “It’s the little people who turn the wheels of the world while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.” It’s all about community spirit and a sense of belonging. Last month I listed the names of just some of the people who “step up to the plate” in very concrete ways to support the Town. 

As we begin the holiday season with its emphasis on family, friends, and good will towards all, you might want to consider how else you can actively participate in Forestville, in making “the good life” a reality for all. Check with local organizations (the Food Closet, the schools, the Forestville Planning Association, the Youth Park, Prime Timers, the Chamber of Commerce, etc.), or, if you are not sure where your interests and efforts would best fit, feel free to contact me for, or 887-1985. 

Downtown Park 

Movement is slow, but it’s happening. You probably already enjoy the natural beauty, vineyard views, trail, and benches there. It is a jewel in the center of Town. But, before any further, possible development can happen, the County has required a lot line adjustment. This will clean up the original misshapen lot lines to conform with their intended use, i.e. so that the Town (via the Forestville Planning Association, FPA) owns all of the lands within the conservation easement and the private LLC owns the adjacent developable land. Once the County approves the change, the design plans (as shared at Town Meetings) will be submitted for permits. (See for design plans.) All this should take the County a good 6 months. Meanwhile, I kind of like the Park’s rustic nature as it is.

Silver Oak

People have wondered about the ongoing activity (earth moving machines, noise, etc) in the old Crinella property behind the Downtown Park. Tony LeBlanc, General Manager of Silver Oak Winery, which now owns the property, renamed Last Stop Vineyard, reports that the County required the upgrading of an old pond there due to serious structural defects. In digging out the area in order to lay a clay liner, the construction crew hit several unexpected flows of water. This has made the project last much longer than expected. The final stage of the project will be to grade the adjacent area for the future planting of additional vineyard. 

The goal is to complete the project by the end of November. Silver Oak, which wants to be a “good neighbor,” plans to then hold an open house to explain the project and answer questions about its viticulture practices. {Silver Oak is into “sustainable farming.” It is not certified organic primarily because it still uses Round-Up for weed control}.

Youth Park 

The YP will break ground on its new Youth Center on December 28! Construction should take about 3 months with the facility hopefully opening in March. Thanks to all the members of the community who have made this possible! (This year’s golf tournament raised over $40,000.).

Bits and Pieces 

…The County Board of Supervisors adopted a Gold Resolution recognizing the Forestville Teen Clinic on 15 years of service to the youth of Sonoma County.

Paul Dondero, the Forestville School Music Teacher last year (Mr. D), is forming a new Children’s Choir/Family Choir of kids and their parents. It meets weekly on a drop-in basis, Thursdays, 3:15-4:00, at the Tiny Town Café (thanks, Kevin!). $5 per kid per class – parents sing free! 

   Also, on Wednesdays at Tiny Town, 3:15-4, he is offering a Drum Circle. His intention is for the groups to give frequent community-centered performances in the West County area. For more info contact Paul Dondero at 510-331-1057 or 

..…The Hollydale Clubhouse: Mark your 2016 calendars with these annual community dinners: March 12th Corned Beef & Cabbage, April 9th German Beef Rouladen Dinner, October 15th Pasta Feed. Table Tennis every 1st & 3rd Thursday of the month from 7-10pm. Family memberships, helping to keep the 69-year-old Clubhouse open, only $35 per year. Support long-standing local non-profit public benefit organizations; it’s a community thing and the locals make it happen.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! There is much to be thankful for.

How might you contribute more to “The Good Life” in Forestville?