Fruit trees. Tomorrow. Distributed 5-6 p.m. Tuesday in the parking lot at Civic Center Plaza on Macdonald Avenue.
The trees are being given out by the group Self-Sustaining Communities (www.self-sustainingcommunities.org), which has distributed almost 10,000 trees in the East Bay since 2009.
Most recently, there were 400 trees handed out at Richmond’s compost giveaway on Saturday.
The group was started in El Cerrito and is now based in Richmond and most of the trees have been directed to low-income communities in West Contra Costa as a way to help people provide for themselves.
The trees are donated by growers in the Central Valley.
This time there are no qualifications and almost 900 trees that need homes and may bear nutritional fruit with the proper care.
Here is the announcement from group founder Linda Schneider.
We were unexpectedly given 1308 apple and cherry trees, somewhat at the last minute. They are all bare root.
They are Gala, Granny Smith, Fuji apples, and Bing, Rainier, Van and Brooks cherries.
Thanks to Jennifer Ly with the City of Richmond, Eduardo Martinez and Tony Wolcott, 400 trees total were given out Saturday with the compost giveaway.
The City is having another giveaway between 5:00 and 6:30 in front of the Richmond City Hall, in the parking lot, tomorrow, Tuesday. Because we have so many, and time is of the essence, we would like to get these out as quickly as possible.
This will be open to all — the goal being we want as much local food and greening throughout entire neighborhoods as possible, and because it also creates meaningful social activity and community. These are not for resale or business.
My plan on Thursday was to attend the reopening ceremony of the historic Maritime Center in Richmond, then rush back to the office to file a story on the event and write the community column for Sunday’s edition.
That plan came crashing down, when I came crashing down myself, tripping on the sidewalk and injuring a finger pretty badly. Instead of hurrying back to the office, I was hurrying to the emergency clinic at Kaiser Richmond, which, thankfully, was nearby.
This note is just to explain why there won’t be a column on Sunday as I recuperate and to offer my apology to all the readers and contributors who depend on it for their community news. I plan to be back at work next week, typing laboriously with the fingers I can still use.
On Thursday night, from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., and Friday night, from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., there will be various lane closures on eastbound I-80, between State Route 4 and the Crockett off-ramp.
Ramp Closures for Landscape Activities
· On Wednesday, July 27, and Thursday, July 28, Caltrans will close the eastbound I-80 Hercules off-ramp from 10 p.m. to 6.a.m. Detour: exit at the eastbound I-80 Willow Avenue off-ramp
· The eastbound State Route 4 to eastbound I-80 connector ramp will be closed Wednesday night, July 27, and Thursday night, July 28, from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., and Friday night, July 29, from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. Detour: Continue north on San Pablo Avenue to Willow Avenue and turn right. Continue on Willow Avenue. Take the on-ramp to eastbound I-80.
· The westbound SR 4 to eastbound I-80 connector ramp will be closed Wednesday night, July 27, and Thursday night, July 28, from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., and Friday night, July 29, from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. Detour: Continue on John Muir Parkway. Turn right on San Pablo Avenue. Continue on San Pablo Avenue to Willow Avenue and turn right. Continue on Willow Avenue. Take the on-ramp to eastbound I-80.
· Friday night, July 29, the eastbound I-80 Hercules off-ramp is scheduled to be closed from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. In addition, the eastbound I-80 Willow Avenue off-ramp is scheduled to be closed from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. Note: the eastbound Hercules and Willow Avenue off-ramps will not be closed at the same time. As the contractor completes work at the Hercules off-ramp, work will proceed to the Willow Avenue off-ramp. Detour: During the Willow Avenue off-ramp closure, drivers may reach Willow Avenue by taking the State Route 4/Hercules exit (right lane), then turn left on Willow Avenue.
It hasn’t been an easy year for public education. For the John Swett school district, the state budget cuts have translated into layoffs, program cuts and elimination of basics like librarians and custodians.
Pastor John Wright of Full Gospel Fellowship Church in Hercules has decided some local help is needed. Wright has teamed up with Steve Trotter, principal of Rodeo Hills Elementary School in Rodeo, and launched a new web site: www.adoptyourschool.org.
The site has a general list of needed items (everything from colored pencils to glue sticks to disinfectant wipes) and drop-off locations. Right now Full Gospel is the only official drop-off point but more are coming.
Teachers in all grades at Rodeo Hills have also posted their personalized wish lists on the site.
So if you’ve got some extra school or office supplies around the house, or you don’t mind picking up a little extra while doing your back-to-school shopping this summer, check out the new site!
The El Cerrito-based group Self-Sustaining Communities has landed another donation of fruit trees that will be distributed from 1-3 p.m. today at the Center for Human Development at the Shields-Reid Community Center, 1410 Kelsey St. for residents in Parchester Village, and to Opportunity West at the Nevin Community Center at Sixth Street and Nevin Avenue.
Group founder Linda Schneider says the latest batch of trees numbers 500 or more and includes primarily cherry and possibly apple trees, all intended to provide a source of ongoing nutrition for marginal neighborhoods.
“There may be a few extras for those in Albany, El Cerrito and El Sobrante who would like to go to the Nevin Community Center or to 1410 Kelsey St.” at 1 p.m. she writes.
Those trees will be given out on a first-come, first-serve basis.
UPDATE — Schnieder e-mailed this note at 12:30 p.m. today: “1,260 apple and cherry trees today, bringing out total as of November, 2009, to 7,425. We just may meaningfully transform our communities in spite of ourselves. How cool is that going to be?”
Credit for the trees goes to grower Pro Tree Nurseries.
If you were planning on going to a county library branch in Contra Costa on Thursday, well, don’t. The county library advises that “Due to Countywide budget cuts, all Contra Costa County Libraries will be closed on Thursday, March 31. During the closure, the book drops will remain open. Renewals may be requested online or by phone. Each community library will reopen on their next regularly scheduled open day.”
The main branch of the Richmond Library at 325 Civic Center Plaza isn’t part of the county system and will be open for its regular hours of 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Thursday.
A "new" fault line map from the United States Geological Survey was actually drawn up in 1982, when you could go to the drive-in movies in Richmond.
So the United States Geological Survey is making its maps of earthquake fault lines in California available for download online to the public for the first time.
The maps, officially titled the “Alquist-Priolo Earthquake Fault Zone Maps,” show highlighted fault lines highlighted on a grayscale, topographical depiction of the terrain, but that doesn’t mean any new cartography was done.
The map from our area is from 1982 and clearly shows a drive-in movie theater at the Hilltop Drive exit and no Richmond Parkway, where our beloved West County Times building has stood watch for more than 20 years.
The world champions of baseball, after all, had previously announced that Richmond (location to be determined) was to be one of the stops on a tour that had garnered large crowds around the Bay Area, the West Coast and even New York.
(The tour noticeably avoids most of the areas considered Oakland A’s territory, but has already hit Walnut Creek and Pleasanton. A Richmond stop would be the trophy’s closest stop to Oakland.)
Calls and e-mails to the Giants took a couple of days to get a response, and the answer was that the trophy will indeed be at the Richmond Memorial Auditorium at Civic Center Plaza off Macdonald Avenue from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Feb. 23. After the inquiries, the Richmond visit was also put up on the team’s website.
Viewings will be on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Voters turned down Measure J in November, but the school district is hoping that it will fare better if it asks taxpayers for less this time around.
The latest proposal: a May 3 mail election seeking approval of a $75 parcel tax on residential property for four years, and one cent per square foot on industrial and commercial property.
That’s less than what the district asked for in Measure J, when they sought $96 a year for four years on residential properties and 1.5 cents per square foot on commercial land.
Is that enough to make a difference at the ballot box? We may soon find out.
If you want to let the school board know what you think of the proposal, you can attend a public hearing at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at 400 Parker Ave. in Rodeo. The school board will decide whether to call a special election after the hearing.
The John Swett school district covers Rodeo and Crockett.