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Sonoma County Gazette
Occidental Oriented by Gino Gaffney

Hello and Happy New Year Ya’ll!

Jan 5, 2018


GOALS: I have made a couple of New Year resolutions for 2018, get back in the habit of bike riding and get more involved in charity work. I have found in my own experience that setting attainable goals and creating a routine that incorporates them are good pathways to success when setting resolutions. If you want to accomplish whatever you have resolved to do, don’t be vague with your goal setting and don’t just assume that once your goal is set your actions will come.

My way of achieving that for this year is to sign up for Climate Ride California 2018. Between May 20th and 24th I will be part of a 150 person group riding our bicycles from Eureka to San Francisco to raise awareness and funds for charities that are involved in efforts to combat climate change, and do good work around our county, state and world.

All participants agree to raise at least $3,000 – my personal fund-raising goal is $3,900 as I will be turning 39 on January 29th(shout-out to all the Aquarians out there). Please help me to reach (and surpass) my goal by visiting and making a tax-deductible donation, I and the planet (and some very worth causes) thank you.

I am very excited to get back on the bicycle and getting into better shape riding our beautiful Sonoma County roads and trails. If anyone reading this is looking for a riding buddy (road or trail) please contact me. When it comes time for the ride, I am looking forward to riding the Avenue of the Giants, the Mendocino coast and across the Golden Gate Bridge which will all be firsts.

One of the great aspects of the fund-raising for Climate Ride is that each individual gets to choose (from a long list of options) which charities he/she wants their funds to go to. I have chosen Ceres Community ProjectSonoma County Bicycle Coalition,  Center for Climate Protection, Sierra Club California and The Nature Conservancy.

HOME for the Holidays:The 32nd annualOccidental Crafts Faire was a wonderful experience as always. Thanks to all who made it happen, from volunteers to vendors, soup preparers to cookie bakers, even Mother Nature pitched in with some perfect weather for the weekend! Thank you to all the local businesses that made contributions to our raffle, your generosity is greatly appreciated.

The Occidental Community Council (who puts on the Craft Faire) would love to have more community involvement, whether you come to meetings regularly to be part of the group, or have a specific idea/need for town that you think is worth bringing to the groups attention and possibly receive funding for. We meet on the third Saturday of every month at the Community Center at 10:30am, next meeting is January 20th.

Art Classes: Speaking of the Community Center here’s a great resource for adults of any age with Tuesday mornings free. Our area is full of artists, but what about the rest of us who might enjoy playing with art in a non-judgmental atmosphere and finding new depths of concentration, self-expression, and camraderie?

Occidental has recently started such a class thanks to the Older Adults program of the SRJC and it is open to adults of all ages and led by a former Camp Meeker resident. There is no enrollment fee… you can simply show up and fill out a registration form at any time during the semester. Participants come and go as it fits their other obligations in life.

Dotty Joos (my source of in on this) attended almost every class and has gotten so much personal value out of it, even though she has no intention to be...”an artist.” Classes are at the Community Center on Tuesday mornings from 10-12:30, and start again on January 23. Put it on your calendar and try it out, no obligation. Thanks for sending in the info Dotty.

Anyone else out there who has community information they would like to possibly be included in the column, please don’t hesitate to e-mail and let me know. This could be event information or just something on your mind. Our deadline for submittal is generally mid-month to make it into the following months paper. 

I will sign off in the hopes that 2018 brings good things.

How about some rain please!


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