The Sonoma County Gazette: Community News Magazine
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Petaluma Playground - January 2017


Petaluma Playground - January 2017

New in Town? Or just want to meet locals and become involved in our community? Meet new people, share resources, and get involved in social activities at the Petaluma Newcomers Club at Aqus Community & Cafe, 189 H St, Petaluma. INFO: (707) 778-6060, This is just the Tip of the Iceburg at Aqus Community, a 501c3 California Nonprofit. We create fun opportunities for people to connect, build relationships and enjoy a sense of belonging to community.  Through a variety of social events, programs, lectures and activities, we get people connected through shared interests in vibrant and friendly settings. Their events are held around Petaluma at various locations and in Aqus Cafe - a neighborhood hotbed of community. Learn about Poet Mondays (6pm), Creative and Abundant Artist, Thinkaers’ Book Club, Take Action on Climate Change, Science Salon, Jazz Jam, Celtic Night, Trivia, Chamber Music, Singers & Songwriters, and Bluegrass Jam. Sign up for their newsletter. John and Diane will make sure you have no reason to be onely or feel left out of your community.   

Petaluma Art Center is closed until January 21st. Once back open their new hours will be: open Tuesday through Saturday, 11am-5pm.  Closed Sunday. If you haven’t been there yet, please put this on your list of things to do in 2017. They not only have on-going exhibits, but also classes. films, and literary events.  230 Lakeville Street in the Historic Railroad Station, right by the tracks. INFO: (707) 762-5600 and

NEXT Exhibit: Five Sonoma County artists are being recognized through the fourth annual “Discovered: Emerging Artists from Sonoma County” program, produced by Creative Sonoma and the Petaluma Arts Center. The five winners’ work will be shown in a professionally juried show at the Center, with an opening reception on January 21st from 5 to 7 pm. These five artists reflect the tremendous diversity of the county’s visual arts community in genre, style and philosophy. Yet, they share several common themes. These works explore a culture that has less to do with the intrinsic value of things, and more to do with providing a felt experience.” 

Winners include: Jenny Harp (Santa Rosa), whose beautiful drawings remind us of the power and permanence of physical, rather than digital images; Dayana Leon (Santa Rosa), whose fluorescent paintings document the extreme, physical changes women go through to feel included in today’s society; Catherine Sieck (Occidental), who uses meticulously cut paper to illustrate her fascination with earth’s sustainability; Kala Stein (Sonoma), who uses ceramic sculpture to assemble a view of the skies; and Jaynee Watson (Petaluma), whose installations use dramatic manipulation of materials to transform emotions and feelings into physical objects. 

The winners were selected through a highly competitive process. Initial recommendations were made for 80 artists to participate leading to 46 applications which were juried down to 12 finalists. Jurors made site visits to the studios of all finalists and selected the 5 winners. For more information on the Discovered program, please contact Kristen Madsen at

Petaluma Elks Lodge hosted ‘Holiday Fest’ Concert of the Schools. Music was provided by Petaluma High School Jazz ensemble, Petaluma Junior High Choir and the Petaluma High School Choir. There was a pasta and meatball dinner, raffle and holiday sing alongs. Over 200 Elks and members of the community attended the event.  Next years event plans to have more Schools from through out the city perform. The Elks working in conjunction with “Keeping Music in the Schools” a local non profit worked to raise money to keep music programs funded in the Petaluma City School system. “Keeping Music in the Schools” puts on the Petaluma Music Festival as well. This year they raised $60,000 to distribute between the different Petaluma Schools