INDEPENDENCE DAY FIREWORKS AND CELEBRATIONS IN YUCCA VALLEY AND TWENTYNINE PALMS

Tuesday’s July 4th events begin in the early evening at both end of our Morongo Basin and capped off with a coordinated fireworks spectacular synchronized to music broadcast across our desert skies. Reporter Mike Lipsitz has details …
This year Twentynine Palms boasts the biggest booms set to start in Luckie Park off Utah Trail at 9 p.m., same time as Yucca Valley’s fireworks spectacular in Brehm Park on Little League Drive. Both displays will be synced to patriotic music and broadcast on Z107.7 FM. So whether you’re in Brehm or Luckie Park, or tuned in to Z107.7 from your backyard, pool, or patio, you can experience the same spectacular sights and sounds just about anywhere in the high desert.
Events start well before dark. Beginning at 4 p.m. in Luckie Park, enjoy food and other vendors, kid’s activities, extended pool hours, and the Z107.7 mobile DJ. Live music starts at 6 p.m. with the classic rock sounds of Southbound and Company.
At Yucca Valley’s Brehm Park, gates open at 6 p.m. with free face painting, food and other vendors. At 6:30 p.m. the funk-rock sound of “Desert Sol” kicks off the Summer Music Festival’s free concert series.
Both events are free and open to all ages. Feel free to bring your lawn chairs and blankets, but leave the pets and alcohol at home. There is no July 3 show in Landers this year. Personal use of any fireworks is prohibited by law in Morongo Basin.

JULY 4TH HOLIDAY CLOSURES SET

All government offices, banks, libraries, schools, and post offices will be closed Tuesday, July 4, in observance of Independence Day. Copper Mountain College will be closed as well. In addition, Burrtec will delay its trash pickup by one day. The Morongo Basin Transit Authority will NOT operate service on Tuesday, July 4, and will resume its regularly scheduled service on Wednesday, July 5. The Twentynine Palms Senior Center will be open on a modified schedule. On Monday, July 3, the center will be open from 9 to 1, and will serve lunch. On Tuesday, July 4, the center will be closed. The senior center will re-open Wednesday, July 5, with full services.

KEEP YOUR DOG SAFE DURING THE 4TH OF JULY

The fifth of July is the busiest day of the year for many animal shelters, as many dogs panic due to the loud bangs from fireworks celebrations, run off, and get lost. Managing editor Tami Roleff has some tips on how to keep your dog safe this weekend…
While most people love the fireworks on the Fourth of July, the sounds of explosions may be very scary for our furry friends. To help keep your dog safe and calm, keep your dog inside during fireworks, with windows and curtains closed. Provide a safe place for your dog; many dogs like to be in small enclosed places, such as in their crate, inside a closet, or even in a bathtub. Make sure your dog is wearing a collar, with ID tags. Play music to drown out the sound of the fireworks. A Thundershirt helps some dogs remain calm; if you don’t have a Thundershirt, substitute a T-shirt that fits snugly around your dog’s chest and abdomen. It may also help if you tire your dog out with lots of exercise earlier in the day.

MOJAVE DESERT LAND TRUST PURCHASES SAMUELSON’S ROCKS PROPERTY

A long-time favorite spot for local hikers inside the boundaries of Joshua Tree National Park has been purchased from the private owners and will eventually be transferred to the national park. The Mojave Desert Land Trust finalized the acquisition of the 60-acre parcel of land containing Samuelson’s rocks in June. John Samuelson was a homesteader, gold miner, and Swedish immigrant who carved his philosophies into the boulders around his property starting in 1927. The engraved boulders, complete with misspellings and imperfect grammar, provide insight to early homesteading life and life during the Great Depression. Park Superintendent David Smith was grateful to the Land Trust for the purchase. “Samuelson’s Rocks is truly one of the most unique historical sites we have in the California desert. It opens the door to a time when people were discovering the desert as a way of finding peace and rejuvenation. Having it in public hands is a wonderful gift to the American people,” Smith said.

Tami Roleff photo

Tami Roleff photo

Tami Roleff photo

Tami Roleff photo

PROPERTY VALUES GOING UP COUNTYWIDE AND LOCALLY

Property, apparently, is still a good investment in these parts. Reporter David Haldane explains…
If you own property in the Morongo Basin, County Tax Assessor Bob Dutton has some good news for you; you’ve made money. At least on paper.
Assessed property values in San Bernardino County have increased overall by 6.1 percent since 2016, Dutton reported last week. That amounts to a whopping $206.6 billion worth of property, the first time ever that the county’s total property valuation has broken the $200 billion mark.
Local property values also increased, though slightly less. Unincorporated areas led the pack with a 5.6 percent increase, followed by Yucca Valley where property values went up by 4 percent. Twentynine Palms had the smallest increase of just 1.3 percent.
To look up your own property’s assessed value, visit the assessor’s website at www.sbcounty.gov/assessor.

YUCCA VALLEY MAN HELD AFTER GIVING FALSE NAME

A Yucca Valley man who gave his brother’s name to a deputy following a traffic stop was arrested for false impersonation. According to a Sheriff’s report, the deputy stopped a black Acura about 6:40 p.m. near Joshua Lane and Hardesty Drive in Yucca Valley because the car didn’t have any license plates. The driver, Paul Taylor, 32, provided the deputy with his brother’s name because he knew he had a no-bail arrest warrant for violating the terms of his post-release community supervision. During a search, the deputy found drug paraphernalia. Paul Taylor was arrested for investigation of false impersonation and for violating the terms of his release. He was booked into the Morongo Basin Jail and is being held without bail.

MORONGO BASIN SEXUAL ASSAULT SERVICES LOOKING FOR VOLUNTEERS

Volunteers are being sought for Morongo Basin Sexual Assault Services. Reporter Rebecca Havely has the free training details…
A few minutes of your time can help someone take back years of their life. Every two minutes, another woman, man or child is sexually assaulted and the effects can be devastating. Morongo Basin Sexual Assault Services offers free state certified volunteer training. To sign up for the next training session beginning July 10 call 760-369-3353.

ANIMAL ACTION LEAGUE OFFERING LOW-COST PET SERVICES

The Animal Action League will be offering low-cost vaccine and microchip clinics in July for dogs and cats, as well as low-cost spaying and neutering. No appointments are necessary for vaccines or microchips; appointments are required for spaying and neutering services. Microchips are only $15, and can help reunite you with your lost pet. Clinics will be held in Joshua Tree, west of the dinosaurs on Highway 62, on July 5, 6, 8, 17, 20, 21, 28, and 31, and in Desert Hot Springs’ Wardman Park July 12, 13, and 24. All clinics are held from 10 to 2 and are cash only. Visit animalactionleague.us for more information. To make an appointment for spaying or neutering, call 760-366-1100.